Fig Leaves and Other Christian Coverings HTML version

I was John Cleese I could do that better with those big legs he has but [laughter ] you know what I'm talking about.
Father, we just thank You that You're a God who moves us on. We don't want to mess around in a wilderness of
brokenness, a wilderness beyond the promises of God. We want to step up into the things You have for us and we
know Lord it requires we make a decision to change and to grow, make a decision to position ourselves for those
things that must happen in our life for us to receive Your blessing. Father, I pray Your great grace upon my life, upon
Bay City, upon every pers on here to enter into a season of changing and growing.
1. Introduction:
· How authentic and real are we with people? T he way we act shows how we grow, how mature we are and how we respo nd to Him.
· Some people have relationships with their pets and their hobbies rather than people.
· How can you enter another's world if you can't be real and authentic? Walk daily and be consistent in life.
· God's plan is for us to grow, mature, represent him, and advance His Kingdom in society, not to be great pretenders but to be real, authentic.
· Luke 10:33-34 - T his is what maturity looks like!
· T he Good Samaritan entered the world o f the broken man and did what he could.
· Jesus still enters the world of broken people to minister healing and freedom.
· T he anointing on Jesus – heals the broken hearted – Luke 4:18
· Oft en people cover and conceal their brokenness and never mature.
· Genesis 3:7 - Adam and Eve – sewed fig leav es together and made themselves coverings.
· Verse 10 - “I was afraid (bad feelings) because I was naked and I hid myself”.
· Adam and Eve conceal, cover up then hid from the painful reality of their condition.
· Behavior = „hiding'
· Feelings = „fear and shame'
· Belief = “I will be punished”
· What if they had believed the truth? God is Good! What if they've behaved differently?
· With the Holy Spirit in us, we need to face the truth and realities, if not we can't grow and we'll miss the opportunity.
2. God often uses Pain to get our Attention – How God causes us to grow:
· God allows us to go through a journey to change and to be able to change causes pain on the inside. Change inside and the exterior will change quicker.
· Deuteronomy 8:2-3 - Remember the way the lord your God led you all the way through the wilderness that he might know you.
· God desired His people to grow, to mature! So they could possess their inheritance.
· God's people needed to break free of old patterns formed in slavery in Egypt.
· God allowed His people to experience pain – to draw out what was in their heart.
· God led them, allowed them to go through painful experi ences and to get rid of the victim mentality that faith might grow. Israel demonstrated that they
were unabl e to enter the promised land – if you resist change, you delay your life from progressing to a higher level.
· Unless there is sufficient pain, most people will not take an honest look at themselves.
· Many people change when pain o f staying the same is greater than the pain of change.
· He knows exactly what is in us. We don't, we are unaware of what's going on inside. Experiences bring it to the surface. We could loose our cool, loosing
control. What you fear will control your life.
· The first step to change is to develop „awareness' of „inner personal world'.
· Awaren ess o f behaviors, of feelings, of beliefs and motivations.
· Most people would prefer to control and manipulate their „outer world' than explore their inner world.
· Real change requires pain ful honesty! Change, be honest. T he preferred choi ce is to control the world around us, but God wants to change our inside to
influen ce the outside.
· How do you look beneath the surface? Begin to change.
3. Keys to Change:
1) Developing an Awareness o f what I am Feeling and Doing:
a) John 13:3-5 - Jesus was fully aware (knowing) who he was and what He was doing.
· Knowing = 1492 = eido = to see, become aware o f, to perceive by senses.
· He was secure in His identity = able to break free o f expect ations from people.
b) Jesus was deeply aware of His feelings and expressed them openly. No need to pretend. He was a passionate man.
· John 11:33 – Jesus wept.
· Jesus felt and express ed emotions: joy, anger, astonishment, longing.
· T here are 8 main groups of feeling/emotions: Anger, Sadness, Fear, Shame, Disgust, Enjoyment, Love, and Surprise.
· Every person has feelings – part of being made in the image of God.
· How connected are you with your feelings?
c) Jesus was deeply aware o f His feelings fo r others.
· Mark 1:41 - Jesus moved with compassion. He felt the pain in others life.
· Empathy = ability to be aware o f and sensitive to the feelings of others.
· T o impact people is to be aware of how they feel. T o be able to do this we need to be able to be aware o f what we are on th e inside, our heart, conflict,
belief systems.
· What you belief you become.
d) Practice paying attention to what is happening within you.
· E.g. your body – tension, stomach knotted, clenched arms.