Good Morning Family!
What a blessing that God has gathered us all together today..
I know some of you might think, you've stumbled here by mistake
But I'll let you in on something, God makes no mistakes!
You ended up here because God places a high value on your life!
On your soul!
If you have been with us the last few times we've met,
you know we've been talking about A Path To Freedom
If you're here for the first time, I'm so glad you've come to join us..
Today, in our series A Path To Freedom, we'll be talking about
Awaken us to the claims of Your Word! O loving and gracious Lord, stir within our hearts, a passion, a desire to grow deeper in our faith, and for Your Kingdom. That we may respond not with just our words, but with our lives. Help us each to realize and respond to the unique gifts, You have placed within us, that we may do our part to building Your Kingdom.
As we worship You today, help us to know You more fully, as we are fully known.
In Jesus' Name
"Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."
Sick Gems Being Cured
Some time back, I read an article of a man who observed:
“At the foot of a cliff under the windows of the Castle at Miramar, at a depth of eighty feet below the surface of the clear waters of the Adriatic, is a cage, fashioned by divers in the face of the rock. In that cage are some of the most magnificent pearls in existence. They belong to the Archduchess Rainer. The gems had become “sick” and been losing their color; and experts were unanimous in declaring that the only way to restore their original brilliance was to submit them to a prolonged immersion in the depths of the sea. They lay there for a number of years; and, when I last read of them, they were gradually regaining their former unrivaled oriency.”
Life has a way of wearing us out and bruising us…
Can I get a witness?
If we don’t allow ourselves to cure and recover, we will only get worse.
We have talked a lot about healing from bruises and how that Jesus declared in Luke 4:18 that a vital part of His mission was to set at liberty them that are bruised.
How many here know what it is to have had bruises in your life?
This word bruise in Luke 4:18 means to oppress. The Greek gives this definition: to break, break in pieces, shatter, smite through.
So Jesus is talking about more than just a dark blood spot under the surface of your skin. He is talking about spiritual and emotional bruises…. bruises of the soul.
These are bruises that you can’t see with the eye. To be emotionally bruised means to be emotionally downtrodden, emotionally crushed, and emotionally broken down by calamity.
Calamity can certainly crush and break down.
When you are oppressed and bruised, it takes a tremendous amount of emotional energy just to get out of bed in the morning…. to the person who is emotionally downtrodden, it seems like each day is only going to be another drag…. nothing to look forward to.
Even the simplest of tasks become mundane
Life itself becomes weighty.
Remember that we also talked about 2 Timothy 2:26: "that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil."
That the purpose of this whole series is about recovery from the bruises.
Remember how we talked about Isaiah 57:18 and how that the Lord said: "I have seen his ways, and will heal him: I will lead him also, and restore comforts unto him and to his mourners."
God wants to Lead, help, comfort, and offer peace.
Remember that we also talked about some major keys to recovery:
Before I begin today, I want to pose a question to some of you:
If you are bruised, ask yourself this question:
What is it within me, that could keep me from taking the steps to accept Jesus' invitation to come to Him?
Okay, let's dive into our text of what Jesus said:
I don't want to admit I need help.
Proverbs 18:12 says: "Before destruction the heart of a man is haughty, And before honor is humility."
"Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility for "God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble." Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you."
1 Peter 5:5-7
Guilt can keep a person from accepting Jesus invitation.
"For innumerable evils have surrounded me; My iniquities have overtaken me, so that I am not able to look up; They are more than the hairs of my head; Therefore my heart fails me.
Fear can block a person from accepting Jesus invitation: You may say: I am afraid of what I don't know. I am afraid of what I would have to give up:
Mark 8:35-38 says:
"For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”
Worry can block a person from coming to Jesus:
We may confuse the decision phase with the problem solving phase.
"casting all your care Him, for He cares for you."
1 Peter 5:5-7
This word "cares" is equivalent with anxiety.
We all know what this feels like
Am I right?
Doubt can block our response to Jesus.
This is when your faith seems too small.
"Jesus said to him, “If
you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.”
Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”
I know a great many Christians, who struggle with doubt.
May I just tell you right here, that if you are experiencing doubt, you need to deepen your faith!
Instead of spending a few moments each day, reading devotionals or God's Word, dedicate more time to His Word.
And before you start with excuses, being a pastor, I've likely already heard them all
In today's world, with all the technology we have available to us, there is no excuse. There's television, the internet, smart phones, tablets, computers, audio programs, radio, Alexa and Google Home devices.
I know, I know... you just don't have enough time.
Well, try giving up that 30 minute T.V program, or how about this... take the time you would normally spend complaining about all the things that are wrong, the things you don't have, your doubts, worries and fears... and study God's Word.
If you will make a point to dedicate more time to His Word...
Believe me, it will not only change your entire thinking process...
It will change your life!
And for those of you, who are sure if you believe in God,
I know some of you personally, I know you enjoy reading a good fictional novel on occasion...
Just humor me and begin reading God's Word...
I challenge all of you to my 30/30 program!
30 days, 30 minutes a day reading or listening to God's Word.
Every day for 30 days, before you begin, ask God to lead you to something in His Word, He wants you to know...
then just open the Book and start reading...
And for you doubters, God, if you're real...reveal to me that you exist.
Many people have attempted to prove that God doesn't exist, only to learn in their quest, God does indeed exist!
And after giving their life to Jesus Christ, they came to realize the quest for proof, was actually God wanting to reveal His existence to them. They finally concluded that the evidence for God was so strong that it actually made more sense to believe in God than to believe He didn't.
So, if you're not afraid (smiling) of becoming a believer in Christ,
what do you have to lose?
How do I take this step to accept Jesus invitation to come to Him?
Step 1: Be sure you are born again.
Acts 2:38 and John 3:5 are still the answer.
Step 2: Accept God’s word as my standard for living. 2 Timothy 3:16 tells us: "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:"
That means even the genealogies are inspired!
Luke 9:26, says:
"For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, of him the Son of Man will be ashamed when He comes in His own glory, and in His Father’s, and of the holy angels."
Step 3: I accept God’s will as my strategy
Psalm 40:8 says,
"I delight to do Your will, O my God,
And Your law is within my heart."
Psalm 143:10-12 says,
"Teach me to do Your will, For You are my God;
Your Spirit is good. Lead me in the land of uprightness.
Revive me, O Lord, for Your name's sake!
For Your righteousness' sake bring my soul out of trouble.
In Your mercy cut off my enemies, And destroy all those who afflict my soul; For I am Your servant."
Step 4: I accept God’s power as my strength
Philippians 4:13 says,
"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."
It's completely logical that what you are presently putting your faith will be proved to be completely and totally insufficient.
"As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. 'He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.' "
So, if you're not afraid, what do you have to lose?
Now may the Lord bless you and keep you;
the Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;
The Lord life up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.
Now and forever, in Jesus' name
Brian Monzon Ministries