It has been a great thrill for the Booth Brothers to get to know author and speaker Zig Ziglar. He has had a tremendous impact on our lives, which has even carried over into the effectiveness of our ministry. One of the most important things Zig ever told us was, "If you treat everyone as though they are hurting, you will be treating the majority of people in the proper manner.” I believe that is true of this world we live in, and it is also true within the Church.
When I think of his quote, I immediately think of James 4:10 “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he will lift you up.” With very few exceptions, I believe our human pain can be traced to sin-- either a choice we have made that created painful results, or choices others have made which have caused painful disruptions in our lives. Even our bodies are impacted by the choices two people made so long ago in a garden. Death and sin were introduced into the world by their wrong choices, and left to ourselves, no one can escape their impact.
But the reason the Gospel is GOOD NEWS is because we are not left to ourselves—we are given the help and hope we need to deal with these painful consequences. We have a sympathizing Savior who has endured hurt, pain, rejection, temptation and any other trial we could possibly face. Not only does he sympathize with our pain, he carried our sinful choices all the way to the cross. At the cross, all of our wrong choices were mercifully paid for so that we could be justified. Once we are justified through Christ, we receive the Holy Spirit and the ability to understand God’s truth in the Bible. These are precious gifts to help us deal with a difficult life.
I know what it feels like to be one of those hurting people Zig talks about. When pain enters my life, the Holy Spirit often reminds me of the truth of James 4:10. I remember that I first came to salvation by completely falling before Christ and trusting that He alone could save me from my sin. And if I daily apply that same humility and acknowledge my need for his strength in my life, I know that He alone will help me get through whatever I face. My job, my CHOICE, is to stay humble before Him, and simply trust in His promise to always pick me back up.
- Michael Booth