But his wife looked back behind him, and she became a pillar of salt.
Then the Philistines took him and put out his eyes, and brought him down to Gaza. They bound him with bronze fetters, and he became a grinder in the prison.
Saul became David's enemy continually.
The Lord became angry with Solomon, because his heart had turned from the Lord God of Israel.
Most people love a happy ending, but few achieve it. 'For wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it' (Matthew 7:13-14).
Even so, life has two endings: the end of the body (our earthly circumstances) and the end of the soul (our spiritual destiny). Many go from sad to bad, like Saul. He became mad, and his life ended poorly. Others go from sad to glad, like Samson. He became a slave, but his life ended victoriously. A few go from glory to glory, like Jesus. Despite opposition, He became stronger, and His Life ended miraculously.
Consider my parents: the New York model and the fighter pilot. My mother, Millie Lewis, seemed to have it all: beauty, talent and success. But she forgot the God of her youth. When she was hit with dire circumstances (Parkinson's disease), she suffered years of misery. To me, her life ended poorly. I choose to believe she re-met our Lord at the end. Therein, she was sad, then glad.
On the other hand was my father, Jack Lewis: a relentlessly optimistic hero. When he was hit with dire circumstances (health and financial challenges), he remained hopeful and became stronger. His life ended easily. He went from glad to glory.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: Happy endings can follow sad lives, as evidenced by the sinner on the cross next to Jesus.* But why wait?
If Jesus rules your heart, your life will end well. But why not be glad now? Give Him your head, mouth, hands and feet. Whatever your circumstances, be thankful to become stronger. If becoming is a process, appreciation pulls you up. 'In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.' (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
No matter if God allows you to wait, suffer or serve in a role you didn't expect. He has a great reason. If you make a decision to be happy, your circumstances will change to match your mood. A glad attitude will rewrite a sad story every time.
To Be Continued...
* The sinner on the cross is saved! https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=luke+23%3A32-43&version=NKJV
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Becoming series.