Pastor's Big Ask | Why Are Christians So Miserable?

Understanding Why A Christian Becomes Miserable In Life

Darrell Ingram
Oct 3, 2021    29m
The main reason a Christian becomes miserable in their life is we attempt to live outside of God's will. We will all come up against difficult times in life, but sometimes God calls us to sow the land where we are instead of jumping ship. He will always lead you in the right direction, into more abundant life. Video recorded at Pineville, Louisiana.

messageRegarding Grammar:

This is a transcription of the sermon. People speak differently than they write, and there are common colloquialisms in this transcript that sound good when spoken, and look like bad grammar when written.

Darrell Ingram: [00:00:00] Amen. Hey, is God worthy? Is He truly worthy? Wait, wait, wait. Y'all know if I don't get some praise for the Lord, I'm just going to keep on and on and on and on and on. Is God worthy? Yes, He is worthy of our praise. He is worthy of our praise. And what we need to understand is when we start asking questions and when Pastor was asking these, I'm going to say it slow because sometimes I get too fast and I may leave off the last letter and add another letter, which we don't need to. But Pastor has this thing, this big ask questions. And you know, it's his turn to ask everybody questions. And the one we're looking at today, why are Christians so miserable? Why are we miserable? Why do I look at paintings out in the world of Christians and they're sad? They're moping. They're not happy and jovial and just jumping for joy. Well, Pastor wants us to understand that we don't have to be miserable. We don't have to live in that state. We don't have to live there in that place. And listen, it's just a privilege that Pastor allows me to come and I want to thank him. Hey, he's in the northeast right now, him and Mrs. Debbie. They’re vacationing. Y'all give it up for him right there. Yep. Y'all enjoy. Y'all relax. Y'all rest.

Darrell Ingram: [00:01:25] Come back and then rock with God’s Word. But this morning, what we're talking about is we're talking about why Christians are miserable and why do we continue to stay miserable? Why don't we stay in that place when we're taught to persevere, when we're taught to move through, when we're taught to grow through that pain? It's called growing pains. We need to step forward and step through it and allow God to work in our lives. Man, but we go through time and time again. I'm not supposed to go past these black things so y'all watch me or I'm not in the picture. Josh said, make sure you stay between those. I'm going to stay between them. It's going to be hard. I'm going to get jittery. I'm not going to get miserable, but I'm going to be happy because I know why do we stay in a place of misery and we don't get nourished and we get parched and we're thirsty? Have any of y'all ever been so thirsty? I mean I remember back in the day when I was in the military, we'd have these rucksacks on and we’d go for these marches and they'd be like 25 miles and all this, that, and the other. I couldn't do it today. But I know when I did it and we'd get to the end, I was thirsty. Matter of fact, I was parched. It's like I had cotton in my mouth.

Darrell Ingram: [00:02:47] Y'all ever had that feeling before? I mean just anything. You just wanted anything. Give me a rock and I'll see, just like Jesus did for Moses, I'll see if some water would come out. Man, I was thirsty. But the minute I took a drink, man, I was quenched. Man, that was satisfying. And here's what God’s Word is for the thirsty soul. When you drink of God’s Word, it quenches you. It fills you up and you feel refreshed. Do you ever feel like that? You see, when I go to God’s Word, I get so excited. And y’all are going to know how excited I am because in a minute I'm going to be so hot, I'm going to be sweating and I'm going to be just on fire and the house is going to be warm because God's in the house. We're going in Genesis 26 and we're going look in starting in verse one. Now there was a famine in the land besides the previous famine in Abraham's time. And Isaac went to Abimelech, the king of the Philistines in Gerar. The Lord appeared to Isaac and said, do not go down to Egypt. Live in the land where I tell you to live. Stay in this land for a while, and I'll be with you and will bless you.

Darrell Ingram: [00:04:02] For to you and your descendants, I will give all these lands, and I will confirm the oath that I swore to your father, Abraham. I will make your descendants numerous as the stars in the sky and will give them all these lands. And through your offspring, all nations of the Earth are blessed. They're blessed today because of the oath and the promise and the covenant that God made with Abraham. And then in verse 12, it says this, Isaac, so Isaac sowed in the land, the land that was in a famine and reaped in the same year a hundredfold and the Lord blessed him. And in verse 13, it says, the man begin to prosper and continued to prosper until he became prosperous for he had possessions of flocks and possessions of herds and great numbers of employees. Here's the best part I like. And the Philistines envied him. And the Philistines envied him. Let's go to the Lord in prayer. Father, I thank you. Father, I thank you for your Word, the power of your Word, the excitement of your Word. And Father, you are truly worthy. Father, right now, use me, a broke vessel, a cracked vessel, a sinner, incomplete. But I’m completed through Jesus Christ, and I want to honor and glorify you, prepare our hearts this morning to glorify you and to hear from you. In Jesus’ name. Amen. Do you think Isaac at this point was going through a famine? Do you think Isaac was going through the famine?

Darrell Ingram: [00:05:50] I want to talk to you a little bit about that misery that we go through as Christians. And sometimes it's hard to get through, and sometimes we don't know. But let me tell you something. When crops begin to fail in our life, there's always a way out. God always gives us a way out. We just got to stay and wait on God and allow Him to begin to bless us. God said to Isaac, stay right here. Don't go anywhere. He said, I don't want you to go anywhere. I want you to stay right here. There's a contrast with staying right here and leaving where God is. And I'm going to show you that this morning. There's a contrast for me staying in God's will and then me walking over here and getting out of God's will. And so many times, we don't know how to jump back into God's will so we decide to live in misery and we decide to live right there. He says, what I've done is I've given you this land and now this land Isaac is in, it's in a famine. But God is saying, don't walk away. Just because it's not producing right now, don't quit. Don't pack up your bags. Don't go anywhere else. Don't go somewhere else where it looks better, looks greener on the other side.

Darrell Ingram: [00:07:16] You stay right here. But unfortunately, what happens is many Christians are in misery because we don't stay where God has placed us. We want to jump ship, and we want to move on. And God says, stay right here. God in essence was giving Isaac a stay here command. He said, stay here. God said, Isaac, I don't want you to do like your father, Abraham, and start traveling all around. I don't want you to move. And then, you know, then I think about Naomi. This is the contrast here. Isaac stayed. Naomi and her family, they moved. And I think of them. That's in the book of Ruth by the way. Y'all have a Bible. Why don't you open it sometimes, and maybe you could see that Ruth is there in the Bible. The Bible said that she was in the city, the Holy Land, Bethlehem, which means House of Bread. It means House of Bread. And there's something wrong when the House of Bread is breadless. There's something wrong with it. She was without bread, and there was a famine in Bethlehem. So she, her husband, her two sons, who by the way, when they got there, they married to Moabite women. When they got there, they left the House of Bread, and they went to Moab. And when you're in Bethlehem, in God's home, in God's house, sometimes there's going to be breadless times.

Darrell Ingram: [00:08:51] Sometimes there's going to be times of thirst. Sometimes there's going to be sometimes of hunger. Sometimes you're going to be aching. Sometimes you're going to be wanting. Sometimes it's going to be miserable. It's going to be miserable, and there will be pain. But I don't care where you're at. You may have a blessed marriage, you may have a great job, you may have a great calling. But you're going to go through leanness in your life. There are times when you go through hardships, and those hardships may bring misery. They may beat you down. I mean there's times that you go through those battles. But you and I know that God’s Word says that we need to persevere. Don't be so quick to jump ship, to hop over to the other side where everything looks much better. Don't just do that. Why not just stay where God tells us to stay? In that land, in that marriage, in that business, in that place, in that church, in this church, Journey Church? Why not stay? Man, listen, I may get you upset because I don't say good morning. I try to. But don't leave on my account. God’s still here. I may be out there, but God's still here. He's still on the throne and He's still worthy and He’s still worthy to be praised. No matter what happens, no matter where you go, no matter where you step in, God is there.

Darrell Ingram: [00:10:38] So why not praise Him instead of being miserable in your life? Everything that you need, God has already given it to you. Everything that you need, God has already given it to you. So why not wait for the blessing to come? Why jump ship? Just wait a little while. When you're in misery, it doesn't matter where you go. You know what happens? Misery always follows you wherever you are. If I'm sorry and sourpuss here, I'm going to be sorry and sourpuss over there. It doesn't matter. If I'm angry here, I'm going to be angry over there. It doesn't matter. If I'm miserable here at Journey Church, you know whose fault it is? It's your fault. It's not God's fault. It's your fault. God says, I'm here and I have all kinds of things for you to help you. I have my Word. You can get up here. And you know what picks me up? I was on fire to come up here even before that praise hymn. But they lit a fire under my soul. Man. How can I sing a song, You Are Worthy, and not preach to Him or preach about Him and tell people that He is worthy? Man, that is so good. Rob, y'all, Micah, y'all rocked the house and I'm just I'm on cloud nine. And I don't know where I'm at in this message, but I'm just excited that God is good.

Darrell Ingram: [00:12:14] But what happens is we step out, and God says, stop. Wait a minute. What I want you to do is I want you to start sewing. There's something, it may look good in Moab and it may look fun and there's no shortage of fun and music and parties. And teenagers, you better listen. Man, it may look good on the outside. Oh, I can't wait to graduate. Let me tell you something. If you want to know how the real world is after that, ask every adult in here that's been there and done that. You got to start paying your own bills, and that's miserable. So listen to us. Listen to the parents. Man, just stop and sow right there. There's going to be breadless times, but God says, stop. That land dried up. You know, but you came back and you're still in the House of God. And it may be dried up for you right now. There may not be big miracles in your life. There may be headaches. There may be trouble. But what do I do? How do I change this? How do I move from misery to happy, to joyful? Where do I go? You take God’s Word, and you start sowing in the land that you're at.

Darrell Ingram: [00:13:46] You take God’s Word, and you start sowing in the land that you're at. Sow in your life. Sow into your dreams that God is placed in you. Give back to the church. Start being a part of the church. Get involved in the church. You know, the most satisfied people here at Journey Church are the ones who serve, the ones who give back. The most miserable ones? That come in the door and say, what can you give me rather than what can I give you, God? God, what can you give me? No, God, what can I give you? Because you alone are worthy. You alone are worthy to be praised and honored. It's not what I can get. But it's what I can give. Man, Journey has a place for you. It's got a place for you to serve, to be a part, to have that satisfaction in your life. If you'll stay in God's house when it's breadless, even when you feel miserable, there'll be a time that it'll all come back. There'll be a time when the blessings begin to pour on you. There'll be a time when, you know, you can't get a hundredfold unless you sow in the land that you're in right now. He told Isaac, stay right there and sow in that land. You're never going to reap a hundredfold until you sow where you're at in this very moment.

Darrell Ingram: [00:15:27] And then God will begin to bless you. It's that land that brought forth a hundredfold. It's that land that God blessed. The Bible says this in Proverbs 17:20. Says, the wisdom for wisdom is before the eyes of him who has understanding. But to the eyes of the fool, there are the ends of the Earth. Wisdom is before the eyes of him who has understanding. Let me put it a different way, another way of saying this. A wise person, when you're a wise person, you begin to appreciate the people that are around you. You begin to appreciate the things that are around you. You begin to appreciate all the wisdom and the people that show up in your life. But the eyes of the fool, there is no ends of the Earth. You see, sometimes, sometimes, sometimes feasting brings misery. Y'all understand that? Sometimes, listen, it's fixing to be Halloween, right? And we're going to have trunk-or-treat and all that out there. And I remember growing up as a kid in California. We didn't carry around these little bags and these little pumpkin plastic things or whatever. We didn't even carry, you know, shopping bags. We got those king-sized pillow sheets. Look at me. I'm telling the truth. If I wouldn't get arrested, I would still go out and get that candy. But I would have a duffel bag this time. So we would go out and, you know, we’d stitch the bottom to make it extra strong because we didn't want to lose any of the treasure that we got.

Darrell Ingram: [00:17:17] And Lord help the person that left to get whatever you want, and they left it out. Because if I went by before anybody else, I had to take the sign down because there was nothing else there. So I'd carry that around. And when I’d get home, all our cousins, we would sit around, and we would start picking out, this is the choice pieces right here. We're going to, I'm going to set these out. These are the okay in a bad day pieces. And these are when I'm out of all the other candy, I'll have some more candy for the rest of the year. But man, I would stuff myself with a choice chocolate, the choice candy. I still do that. If y'all give me candy, Beverly will take it away because I'll eat it. No lie. John Smith brought some of my very best thing. Goo Goo Clusters. And they were a three pack. By the end of the service, they were a zero pack. They were all gone. Don't bring me candy unless you want to bring me Goo Goo Clusters. They good. They good. You put them in the freezer, and they like Goo Goo ice cream cluster candy. Oh man. Oh, I better, it's hypnotizing me. But I'd eat that candy, and I would fill myself with all that good stuff. And I would feel so miserable, and it was misery for like days on out.

Darrell Ingram: [00:18:55] And sometimes, that feasting that we're doing, it brings us misery. God doesn't want us to stay there, and sometimes the leanness comes so that we would depend on Him. So that we’ll depend. And so God was telling Isaac at this point, I use the less than perfect places. I don't want you to do you like your daddy. God doesn't want us to do like Naomi did. He doesn't want us to go out to travel the land to do all these different things. Because this is what happened to Naomi and her family. They left, and later on, bread came back to the House of Bread. They were in a famine where they were, where they went. And this is what happens. She left one famine for three funerals. For three funerals. Her husband and her two boys died, and the only one that was left was one daughter-in-law. The other one had tucked tail and ran and said, I don't want to be a part of that. Three funerals for one famine. Be careful where you run. Be careful where you go. Maybe it's miserable right now, but stay where you're at. Sometimes it's better when you're in a famine and miserable to stay right where you're at.

Darrell Ingram: [00:20:32] I'm not prospering. God, you know, God, you're not doing anything for me. You're not hearing me, God. I'm just so lonely, and I'm so miserable. You know, I think I could go over there because all my friends are over there, and they're having fun. And they don't have God, but they're living it up. And I need to go, and I need to be a part of that. Sow into this ground, not that ground. God says, you know that word, Jarod, what it means? It means dragged off roughly and then chewed up. You know, God says His will for us is not always easy. Sometimes it's hard. Sometimes we get laughed at. Sometimes we don't get included. Sometimes we don't get asked to go along with the whole group. You know what? It's not easy. They may say you're cheesy. But God says He's pleased with you. It's not always easy. Sometimes when you get out there, God says, stay here for a while. You may get chewed up. You may get dragged roughly. You may get chewed up, spit out, and gone. But as a Christian, what you need to do is you don't need to go back to that addiction. You don't need to go back to that drug. You don't need to go back to the way you were. But you stand your ground, and you sow in the House of Bread and bread will come again.

Darrell Ingram: [00:22:05] Man, we're miserable because we keep on running, and we keep on jumping ship. Man, sow into God’s Word. Jesus went to Lazarus on the fourth day. He found David in the back side of the desert. He found Moses in the desert. Found Job in a trial and found the Hebrew children, three of them in the fiery furnace. He found Daniel in the lion's den. He found Elijah in the Juniper tree and Jeremiah in a pit, Peter in a prison, Paul in a storm. What makes you think he can't find you right here? God says, I use surprising places to bring my glory. I use surprising places to bring my glory. Sow into the land that God has given you because when God begins to bless you, it's pressed down, shaken together, and it's overflowing. And when it overflows, guess what happens? It touches that person and it touches that person and it touches that person and that person. And they want to know, hey, what do you have? Let me tell you, I don't want to give you what I got. It's something good. And when God gets a hold of them, then they'll begin to feel. And it's not like that commercial filled to the rim with brim. No, it's pressed down, it’s shaken together, and it's overflowing. That's what God wants to do and what He wants to continue to do with us.

Darrell Ingram: [00:23:37] Stay in the place that He commands you and that He called you to and you'll get blessed a hundredfold. The Bible said He reaped a hundredfold. Every corn kernel that he, or whatever it is, corn seed, corn kernel. I'm not a farmer. I'm a Mexican. I can eat. I'm not a farmer. But every corn seed that he dropped, every pumpkin seed that he dropped, every pea seed that he dropped, every potato bud that he dropped. I thought I was going to say seed. Every one he dropped, everything taco and chalupa he, I threw that in there because I wanted to make sure you're awake. But it would be good, huh? If I dropped a chalupa, there was like a hundred of them. But every seed, every piece of corn he planted, a hundred stalks popped up. Everything he planted. I can see him feasting a hundredfold. Those that are around him. Here's the amazing thing. Those Philistines that encircled him, they envied him. They envied him because he had a hundredfold. He had herds, he had servants, he had workers. He had everything at his command because he listened to God. Here's the thing. We as Christians become miserable when we step out of God's will. And I'm here to tell you, I've stepped out of God's will so many times in my life that I lived in misery.

Darrell Ingram: [00:25:26] I didn't think I would make it the next day. But thanks be to God, I stayed firm, and I had a wife that encouraged me that lifted me up. And God begin to water that seed once again. I began to live. I began to live. What you and I need to learn to do when we live in a time of famine and misery is we need to learn to wait and watch. Wait and watch, wait and watch, wait and watch. I'm going to continue to plant, God. I'm going to continue to plant, God. I'm going to continue to plant, God. It didn't rain for three years. Then he prayed, and it began to rain again. Wait and watch, wait and watch. You know, to everyone that comes every Sunday, whether it's 8:30, whether it's 10:00, whether it's the 11:30 service, the gospel is preached to each and every one. Doesn't matter where you are, you could be watching online, you could be on TV watching, the gospel is presented. You say, well, how do I work out of misery in my life? How do I get out of this misery in my life? God gives us an answer in His Word, and the first thing you need to do is you need to surrender. You need to surrender to Jesus and ask Him to be your Lord and Savior, to forgive you of your sins, to trust Him.

Darrell Ingram: [00:27:04] And to say, Lord, here I am. Take me. You are worthy. And I'm only worthy when you're with me. So, Father, right now, I surrender. No matter if you're a Christian or a non-Christian, the first thing you must do is surrender. It's like that song I Surrender All, All to Him I Owe. Sin has left a crimson stain. He washed it white as snow. Washed it white as snow. Will you stand and bow your heads? Father, I know that many times, we cause misery to come into our lives. But Lord, I know that you don't want us to stay in that state of misery. Father, you want to lift us, you want to encourage us, you want to water us, to get us out of the famine and misery that may come in our lives. So Father, whatever it is right now that whoever is going through, maybe they don't know you as Lord and Savior. Until they surrender, until they stop, and say, Lord, I can't do it on my own, I'm a sinner. Until they come to know you as Lord and Savior, they will continue to live a life of misery. Maybe you're a Christian, and you're living in a life of misery. Maybe you've stepped out of God's will and God's telling you, come back to my will. Let me begin to bless you a hundredfold. You just got to plant where you're at right now. Don't run. But come running down to the Lord. Right now, Lord, whatever's on our heart, we ask in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Bruce Goulart: [00:29:25] On behalf of Pastor James, I ju7st want to say thank you for joining our online experience today. Man, what an amazing message from all three pastors this Sunday. Now I hope to see you next Sunday as we continue our series Pastor’s Big Ask. But if you need someone to pray with you right now, we have people on standby that are willing to pray with you. There's a link in the description that if you click on and fill out, someone will get with you right away. Again, I just want to say thank you for joining our online experience today, and I hope to see you next week.

Recorded in Pineville, Louisiana.
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Journey Church
2900 Donahue Ferry Rd
Pineville, Louisiana 71360