by Cherrilynn Bisbano
The effects of original sin permeate every crevice of our world. Trials, tribulations, illness, sexual immorality, and debauchery are some of the effects of this unwanted invader. There is no escape while sojourning on earth, so God sent the Holy Spirit to give us strength and wisdom amidst the storms.
Jesus is the perfect example of how to live with the effects of sin. He acted in wisdom and love. He never complained. I want to glean from His actions and walk in the power of the Spirit.
Jesus was crushed for our sin. “But he was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace…” (Isaiah 53:5 ESV).
When I read this verse, I think of grapes. I know it seems irreverent and a bit silly, but bear with me. When grapes are made into juice for wine, they are crushed. We reap the rewards when they are pulverized. A fragrant aroma arises only when they are pressed.
Jesus’ body was beaten, yet he said, “Father, forgive them.” His sacrifice reconciled the world to God.
So what happens when we are crushed? People watch when we go through trials.
One day at work, a few co-workers ridiculed me because I said I was offended by their dirty jokes. I found a quiet corner to sulk. Eyes were still on me. My heart broke; they knew I was a Christian. Why would they say such nasty things in my presence, then make fun of me?
The taunts continued.
“Oh, Cherrilynn’s here, we’d better be good, she’ll tell God on us,” Mike stated.
“God wouldn’t like our jokes, either would he?” Steve said.
“You guys are idiots!” I said as I left the room.
Laughter echoed throughout the office and followed me down the hallway as I escaped their harassment. I prayed and asked for wisdom. (I wanted God to call down lightning on them.)
But the Holy Spirit impressed this verse upon my heart instead: “For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing” (2 Corinthians 2:15 ESV). The Spirit continued, your choice is to whine or be wine when you are crushed. Do you want to complain or be a fragrant aroma?
I returned to the office. “I’m sorry for calling you idiots.” Mike and Steve’s mouths opened wider than their eyes.
“We thought you’d never talk to us again,” Mike said with his Cheshire grin.
“We accept the apology, and we will warn you next time we tell those kinds of jokes,” Steve said.
“Thanks, guys,” I said.
After the apology, the dirty jokes stopped. They even came to me privately to ask for prayer.
I’m not always a fragrant offering when I go through trials and tribulations, but God is there to lovingly remind me not to whine.
This article is brought to you by the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA).
About the author: Cherrilynn Bisbano is an award-winning writer in both fiction and non-fiction. She is a coach, ghostwriter, editor, and speaker. She is honored to be a member of AWSA.You can find her published in several online magazines and blogs along with books. Her latest book, Shine Don’t Whine, released in October 2020. Cherrilynn proudly served in the Navy and Air National Guard. She lives with her son, Michael, Jr., and husband of 22 years. Cherrilynn loves Christ, Chocolate, coffee, and Cats. You will often find her on the beach sea glass hunting.
Join the conversation. Do you find yourself complaining when you are crushed?