For those struggling with the pain of their past, what I’m about to share with you will open your eyes to the positive treasures in what you’ve been through. Please pay attention to it.
It is a law of the Spirit that anyone who will be sent to help any group of people must have compassion for the group he is sent to help before he can qualify to help them. It is compassion that draws out of an anointed servant of God the virtues of the spirit to heal, save and deliver those he’s sent to. The Bible will always tell us about Jesus, “and he had great compassion for the multitude and healed them all.” Mathew 9:36, Mathew 14:14, Mathew 20:24 etc.
It takes a compelling compassion for anyone to continually cry to God for a people in order to continue to receive from God on their behalf that which pertains to their deliverance. Nothing else produces such doggedness and total commitment to a course of helping a group than a deep-sitted compassion in the heart.
Now, how does anyone develop this compassion? How did Jesus develop a compassion for sinners? Let me show you God’s formula for achieving this:
“So it is evident that it was essential that He be made like His brethren in every respect, in order that He might become a merciful (sympathetic) and faithful High Priest in the things related to God, to make atonement and propitiation for the people’s sins. For because He Himself [in His humanity] has suffered in being tempted (tested and tried), He is able [immediately] to run to the cry of (assist, relieve) those who are being tempted and tested and tried [and who therefore are being exposed to suffering].”
Hebrews 2:17-18 AMPC
God’s way of imparting compassion on Jesus’s heart for sinners (whom he was called to help) was to give him a personal experience of every possible temptation, test and trial that a human could ever go through. By His personal experience of pain, he now better understands the human experience and therefore better able to sympathetically relate with us.
Jesus could have been a very harsh leader considering his own personal standard of holiness. Whenever anyone came to him crying, “Lord I have done it again. The last time I was here, I promised not to return to that boy’s house. I was later overcome and went back and here I am, my garment is soiled again;” Jesus could have asked the angels to cast them into hell straight away. But no, Jesus knows all about our struggles not by reading it in a book but by personal experience. He would lift up his eyes and say, “whosoever has never sinned before, let him cast the first stone.”
Please note that the bible passage said, IT WAS ESSENTIAL… for Him to be made like his brethren in every respect in order that he might become a merciful and sympathetic high priest to them. What it means is that as far as God is concerned, MERCY and SYMPATHY for those God is calling you to minister to is an ESSENTIAL ingredient for your ministry. If you don’t have it, you have no ministry to that group. Now this is where your past comes in.
Sometimes, that compassion for a group develops in you from your own personal experience of pain. You yourself have suffered the same problem, the same kind of abuse or hardship. When God rescued you finally, you couldn’t imagine seeing others going through the same things.
You get uneasy wishing you can do something to stop the menace immediately. There is a deep compassion in your heart for those passing through those same temptations today. Could it be that God allowed you to pass through those experiences (sometimes not sinful in nature) to prepare you for your future ministry because you’re called to help others who will later experience the same?
Sometimes you are bordered that some of us are not as concerned to help that group. The reason is because we haven’t developed compassion for them because we don’t know how it feels. You know how painful the problem feels because you’ve experienced it before.
While we are not saying that someone must succumb to temptation and sin before developing compassion for ministry – Jesus in his case was tempted in every way, yet without sin – what we are saying is that now that you have fallen but now you’ve been rescued, God wants to make use of your story to save multitudes.
Sometimes, no one can better reach a drug addict than a former addict who met the saviour and got delivered; sometimes no one can better lift an harlot out of promiscuity than a “Rahab” who was once a professional harlot yet still found her way into the lineage of the heroes of faith.
The number one defense sometimes of someone you are trying to minister to is, “you don’t understand what I’m going through.” If then you look them in the eyes and say, “I perfectly understand because I was once in this mess,” they lose their guard and immediately, they want to hear the story of how you found deliverance.
Brothers and Sisters, God needs your past as a token of ministry. In short, this is the greatest way you can retaliate on the devil for how he ravaged you back then. It is by ensuring that your pain will be converted into purpose – that as long as you live, you will viciously ensure others don’t sink into where you had sunk.
But a “past” that God will use for His glory is not one you are unwilling to share. It’s not one you are keeping secret and you don’t want anyone to hear about like some preachers are encouraging you to do. It’s one you have been saved from; one that no longer represents your reality; one you’ve been healed from.
Ironically, one of the ways to such healing itself is to share it to get someone out of the same problem. The more you do and see how your story is converting sinners and strengthening those who are weak, the more you get healed from it; the more you see an edifice of hope being erected out of the broken pieces of your past.
I charge you this day to raise your head up; stop crying; stop that self-pity; kill that low self esteem. Convert your pain into purpose today!!! Let the devil ever live to regret that he ever attacked you by the many sons that story will bring to glory. So shall your case be in Jesus name.
The series on “Past” continues next week.
Peniela Eniayo Akintujoye.
©Peniela Eniayo, Akintujoye| firstname.lastname@example.org