A Broken Jaw To A Purpose Driven Life

Purpose Driven Life

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28

“You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” -Genesis 50:20

“The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles”. ‭-Psalm‬ ‭34‬:‭17‬ NIV

Ten years ago my life would forever change. One night my friends and I had a wild night at a local club. Most of us were all home from college and were drinking pretty heavily. A group of guys from a neighboring town started an argument over a previous fight my friend had with one of their buddies. It was typical behavior for animals you might find on the Discovery Channel. Chests out, sleeves rolled up and screaming as loud as you can to get everyone’s attention. I was King Kong, or at least I thought I was…

I decided I had enough of the arguing, and while one of the guys got in my face, I blindsided him with a sharp elbow to the face. It seemed like a good idea at the time; however I failed to notice his brother was right behind me. Before I knew it, I was lying on the ground after getting punched in the face. Within moments, all hell broke lose. My brother and friends jumped in, and it was an all out brawl. I quickly got up and clocked the guy who hit me. It felt great! Tens of Bouncers jump in. Break up the scuffle and kick out the group of guys we were fighting. We seemed victorious. All my friends padded me on the back as we reminisced what just happened. They were calling me an “Animal.” That is the greatest compliment a young man can get. A word that signifies your strength and wild nature. Everyone bought me drinks and told stories how I managed to give those two brothers a pair of black eyes…

Fast forward three hours. I am now very intoxicated, and my friend convinces me to go outside to smoke a cigarette. After we walk outside he realizes, he has to go to the bathroom. Within seconds, a man comes flying out from around the corner and nearly knocks me out cold with his punch. It was one of the guys from earlier in the night… They waited for me for over three hours. Sobering up and letting their anger take control- the one guy repeatedly punched and kicked me while I laid defenseless on the ground. By the grace of God, I somehow managed to free myself and run back in the bar. I hardly remembered what happened, but I was pretty shaken up. I kept asking my friends to look inside my mouth because I thought I was missing a tooth. They said everything seemed fine; and that I just had some bumps and bruises…. When I woke up the next morning, I was in bad shape. I had a big knot over my eye, and my jaw was severely swollen. My right cheek looked like I swallowed an entire baseball. My parents took me to the hospital, and we found out that I had broken my jaw! I soon had surgery to sew it shut. For the next 40 days, I would eat humble pie out of a straw…

There is no doubt that I led a reckless life back then, and that I had this experience coming to me. However, that moment made me realize that I needed to change. Even before the broken jaw I wasn’t happy with the direction my life was going. Deep down I felt like I didn’t have any purpose and was starting to get depressed. The Bible says the wages of sin are death, and that the enemy wants nothing more than to kill, steal and destroy Gods creation. I was quickly falling into these traps and suffering the consequences of my childish actions. During that difficult time, I began to pray to God like never before. I rededicated my heart to the Jesus. What seemed like was going to be the worst summer of my life wound up being a blessing in disguise. The plans of the enemy are always to harm us, but God desires to teach his children from their mistakes. He is a loving Father and when we need him; the Psalms tells us that we can “Cry out to him in times of trouble.”

During those 40 Days, I began reading the Purpose Driven Life Devotional by Rick Warren. I started the day of the surgery and ended the 40 Day Journey the morning the wires came off. I can honestly say Jesus did a great work in my heart those 40 days. I was an entirely different person by the time I finished reading that devotional. Instead of encouraging people to take part in partying and fighting; I was now encouraging friends to come to church and live for Christ. It wasn’t easy, but I will never forget the lessons I learned through that trial. I thank God for humbling me, and giving me another chance. Today I encourage you to seek the Lord and cry out to him. Life will always have its ups and downs, but the Holy Spirit will guide you through it all if you let him. The void in your heart can only be filled by the one who created your heart. So I encourage you to give it back to him today. He can take your most difficult trial and turn it into a life filled with purpose.