The sermon Pastor Terry gave was directed to and from “nothing but the blood of Jesus”. I was compelled to write a bit after hearing the sermon again on Vimeo.
The song “Chain Breaker” as recorded by Zack Williams entices those that hear the song to trust in Jesus and the Lord to remove the emotional bondage and chains from the past. This allows a person to start today, fresh, and move forward in the nurture and admonition of God’s love.
People can have and serve many gods. Television, mobile phones, movies, work, social media, science, hunting, fishing, sex, drugs, alcohol, thoughts, money, lack of money, politics, sports, door knobs, philosophies, the pursuit of entertainment and excitement, and the list goes on and on.
Yes, “door knobs”. One man in AA chose a door knob as his ‘higher power’ and thus his ‘god’.
There are as many gods in this world as there are people. If any individual allows any person, place, thing, emotion, feeling, or action to take precedence over the one and only true savior, Jesus Christ, then whatever is consuming their life has now become their ‘god’. So, in reality, one person may have multiple ‘gods’ in their life.
Changing our thought patterns is difficult, but it can be done when we line up our minds with God’s Word. He formed the world with His Word!
The enemy has many plans of attack against us. One of these is emotional bondage. Damaged emotions can open our souls to accepting the deceptive “solution” of a covenant with the enemy which causes casualties in our lives. When we are wounded and hurting, the enemy of our soul torments us and tempts us to blame God, to blame others, and/or blame ourselves. But the truth is, the devil is usually the root of the problem to which he offers solution. That’s why we must run to God and not from Him!
Now we can blame God for our bad experiences, or we can run to Him with our troubles. He knows that we are made of dust; and as a father pities his children, so the Lord pities those who fear Him (Psalm103:13, 14).
For instance, when Adam and Eve hid from the Creator in the Garden of Eden because of their disobedience to Him, His love was still there for them. Though they had brought trouble upon themselves and the entire human race, God had mercy on them and did not destroy them.
Our emotions can rebel and rage against God when we experience unanswered prayers or other distresses, but this is the very time we should turn to Him with our damaged emotions, because “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble” (Psalm 46:1).
Satan has other weapons too. Shyness, loneliness and fear of rejections are insecurities that enable the enemy to work in our thought life. Like the thief that he is, he comes to our thoughts to persuade us to isolate ourselves from others. Satan seeks to convince us that to be safe from wounds, we must build walls around ourselves to keep others out. The problem is that the walls we build to keep others out also keep us in!
When we choose to erect invisible walls with the brick and mortar of damaged emotions, we immediately stop all spiritual growth. We become “sitting ducks” for the devil, and suddenly he can hit us with all kinds of misunderstanding and poor judgment. We can become so befuddled that we make it easy for the enemy to enter our decision-making process and misguide us. That is when his demons can deal death blows to our self-esteem and our relationships with others.
Lester Sumrall once said, “If you’re moping, you aren’t coping!”
Rejection and self-pity are examples of emotional hang ups that affect all of us in different ways as we make life choices for good or for evil
["Self-Pity" by D.H. Lawrence]
I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself.
A bird will fall frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself.
Sometimes emotional and mental “structures” have existed for years and we need to wage a real mental war in order to tear them down. We may not even remember when those evil structures were built.
This spirit of rejection may entice (tempt) you to yearn after a married person or someone who is already committed to another. If you yield to that yearning, you have just helped set up the process for rejection.
God’s Bible warns, “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s house, thou shalt not covet thyn neighbor’s wife….nor anything that is thy neighbor’s”(Exodus 20:17). It also says that covetousness is idolatry (Colossians 3:5).
Remember… We covet what we see! Be careful what you allow your eyes to view as it will lead to your mind, heart, beliefs, and overall life. With all the media, it is easy to covet as mass media messages and advertising is in our faces and ears every day.
We can attempt to minister to these self-inflicted wounds of rejection by overindulging items mentioned in the beginning of this letter. These can and will become idols in our lives if we allow them to be. Idols can be considered the same as gods. However, what first appears as liberation is later discovered to be bondage.
Have you ever binge watched a TV Series on Netflix, Amazon Prime, or Hulu? After that series was over, did you start another? After the 147 (or however many) episodes for the first series and 250+ episodes for the second that was just finished, did you stop and realize how much of your life you just devoted to the ‘TV god’?
With 168 hours in a week, how much time do we devote to social media, mobile phones, and TV? Chances are that a large number of us could essentially be bible scholars in this amount of dedicated time if we only redirect our priorities back to God and His word. 200 years ago there was no TV, cell phones, or electronic devices to divert attention away from God. Can you see how Satan easily diverts and distracts our attention with mass media. I know I am guilty of this. Are you?
When we turn to these things instead of turning to God, they become idols. Idolatry is a sin simply because it takes first place in our lives. That is why God says, “Thou shalt have no other gods before me” (Exodus 20:3).
The root of rejection has many branches: loneliness, fantasy and self-pity. After a person feels rejected, Satan manipulates these “branches of loneliness” in the victim’s life so the person will make unconscious agreements with him.
Another emotional hang up the devil uses to get us to make agreements with him is self-pity.
Tears in our souls can bring tears to our eyes. Who hasn’t been wounded by deception in others? The danger, though, is in wallowing in self-pity from the memory of those wounds. Someone once wrote, “We waste half our strength in a useless regretting, we sit by old tombs in the dark too long.”
When thoughts of self-pity attack us, we often throw a “pity party”, inviting spectators of past hurts to contribute their sad stories. AS we agree with these negative thoughts, we are prone to agree with the spirits of jealousy, resentment, unforgiveness, and self-pity. This compounds the suffering and brings infection to our inner wounds.
Our only avenue of freedom is to first understand that forgiving all others, including ourselves, is a prerequisite for receiving healing of inner hurts.
A pity party may temporarily attract a few sympathizers, but ultimately it chases them away. Everyone has his or her own problems. There is enough trouble for everyone in this world! We are no fun to be around when we are wallowing in self-pity.
God knows that most of us have engaged at one time or another in self-pity. Certainly, we have all been mistreated, used and abused at some time. But extended thoughts of self-pity can be a killer because they often lead to depression, despair and even suicide.
The bittersweet poison of self-pity lets us think on self. We get to be center stage, seeking attention and sympathy for the duration of our pity parties. If we spend too much time on this act of futility, we don’t get any better. In fact, we get worse because we are giving over our energy and time to hurt feelings and damaged emotions.
Proverbs 23:7 says, “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” If we maintain the cause of our distress, we will eventually reap the results.
Compassion is needful, but sympathy often courts a whiner. Sympathy originates more from mental emotions, whereas compassion comes from the heart and spirit. Compassion strengthens; sympathy often weakens.
Once we have fallen into the pit of self-pity, how can we free ourselves from this “disease?” If we have made a covenant with an evil spirit of self-pity, we may need others to pray with us to escape this entrapment as we verbally break the covenant in the name of Jesus.
We must confess the sin of self-centeredness and pride. Then we must ask for special grace from the Lord to pull down the stronghold of wrong thoughts engineered by the enemy of our soul.
This pattern of self-destructive thoughts does not form overnight, so it may take a while to break the habit of self-pity. But, “we can do all things in Christ which strengtheneth us” (Philippians 4:13).
Some say that self-pity is the root of depression. As we seek to overcome self-pity, we should edify ourselves with stories of others who have overcome great adversity. Sometimes we may need medication and rest to recuperate. Another way to overcome self-pity is by service to others.
But of course, the greatest help is to first break the spirit of self-pity is in the name of Jesus. Then we must determine to obey God by meditating on “things that are true, noble, things that are lovely, things that are praiseworthy” (Philippians 4:8).
Changing our thought patterns is difficult, but it can be done when we line up our minds with God’s Word. He formed the world with His Word! That’s powerful wouldn’t you say?
That same creative word also tells us to be set free from emotional bondage. We must turn to God instead of away from Him by trusting Him for our answers instead of blaming Him for our problems. Then, even in the midst of life’s trials, we can put on “the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness!” (Isaiah 61:3).
“My God Can”
Years ago, I was a summer counselor at a Christian college. I was counseling a group of teens with numerous questions and issues of things that had happened or were happening in their lives.
From the cafeteria, we set out to gather cans. After cleaning the vegetable, coffee, and other cans, we stripped the labels off. We taped on sections of paper bags to the cans. I had each of the teens take a magic marker and write on their can, “My God Can”.
They were then instructed to write down on a piece of paper each individual thing that was causing them issues or concerns in their life and put it in their “My God Can”.
After they placed their issues into their “My God Can” can, we prayed that God take these things from them and to handle these issues and concerns.
The kids were then told, “These things you have given to God to handle. Now, do not take these things out of your can. Leave them in there.”
They were then told that anytime they started thinking about the things they put in their can to read what they wrote on the can. “My God Can”. Read it out loud numerous times and this would keep frontal the truth and release of those things, issues, and concerns in your life as you have already given them to God so do not dwell on such things. You gave it to God to handle so leave it alone.
If there are still issues concerning you, find an empty green bean or other can and make yourself a “My God Can”, write down your worries and concerns and put them in your can.
“How can this help?” you may ask. The answer is simply...
It is time to break your chains of emotional bondage and get on with serving God and others.
Get over it, give it to God, and Get-Er-Done!!!
Welcome to the Joshua Crossroads Fellowship SDA Co in Joshua, TX.
"UNCONDITIONAL LOVE AND ACCEPTANCE THROUGH THE GIFT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT"
Please join us for Bible study, worship, and prayer.
Terry Darnall - Pastor
Griselda "Kris" Jobe, Student Pastor
Joshua Crossroads Fellowship SDA Co
Join Us This Saturday
Sabbath School: 9:35 am
Worship Service: 10:40 am
"MY COMMAND IS THIS: LOVE EACH OTHER AS I HAVE LOVED YOU." JOHN 15:12