Running From Reality!

November 23th, 2015

People handle Discouragement, Difficulty and Disappointment in different ways. I have listed several common responses to these emotional hurdles that we all face in this life:

The First Response Is To Be An Insulator.

According to 1 Samuel 10:22, when Israel had come together to anoint their first king they could not find Saul. The verse says, “Therefore they enquired of the LORD further, if the man should yet come thither. And the LORD answered, Behold, he hath hid himself among the stuff.” Shortly after Adam and Eve had sinned in the garden, the Bible says in Genesis 3:8, “And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden.”

When struggling with a disappointment or a setback, the common response of an Insulator is to wrap himself or herself up in such a disguise that no one can access his or her heart and hurt them again. Just like Saul and Adam and Eve, they believe the lie that it is easier to hide than it is to face their responsibilities. The Insulators hide within layers of emotional armor in an attempt to prevent anyone from ever seeing who they really are. They go to great lengths to wrap themselves in insulation. They refuse to risk emotional intimacy because of the pain of past hurts.

The Second Response Is To Be An Isolator.

This group of hurt people break my heart the most because the Bible says in Genesis 2:18, “And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.” Relationship and fellowship is not a luxury; it is a necessity.

The common response of an Isolator when they are struggling with emotional darkness and difficulty is to Isolate themselves to avoid the possibility of rejection! Unlike the Insulators who engage in relationship, but beneath layers of protective padding, the Isolator may stand before you, but it is clear that they are not with you.

The Isolators have left their battered heart at home, removed from their daily routine, protected from interaction. Like a patient in the intensive care unit, the Isolator’s emotional health may be so fragile that they do not want to risk taking their pain off of life support. Isolators feel safest in a perpetual state of suspended dislocation. They have the misconception that Isolation and solitariness is freedom, when it is actually their prison cell! Their Isolation protects them from
What They Fear but it also Isolates them from What They Need. This dangerous response to life’s difficulties is really people phobia.

The Third Response Is To Be An Inhibitors.

Ruth 1:19-21, “So they two went until they came to Bethlehem. And it came to pass, when they were come to Bethlehem, that all the city was moved about them, and they said, Is this Naomi ?” And she said unto them, Call me not Naomi, call me Mara: for the Almighty hath dealt very bitterly with me. I went out full, and the LORD hath brought me home again empty: why then call ye me Naomi, seeing the LORD hath testified against me, and the Almighty hath afflicted me?”

They asked her
Who she was, but she answered How she was. She let what she went through change and redefine her identity. An Inhibitor’s common response to the disappointments of life or the wounding of others is a sense of pessimistic frustration that is unparalleled. Enough is never enough to make up for what they have lost, what they have endured, and what they continue to carry around inside of their wounded soul. They live trapped in a perpetual state of frustration, regardless of what they attain or accomplish.

Like pouring water into a rusty bucket, there is no compliment or encouragement that stays with them because they leak out through the holes of
Human Hurts and Difficult Disappointments that have never been healed in their soul! They tend to try and find solace by Making Money, Achieving Another Promotion, Reinventing Their Appearance, Hiding In Hobbies or Avoiding Relationships.

These are not bad people, just people responding badly to life’s
Discouragements , Difficulties and Disappointments. These kind of people will eventually end up divorced, out of church, or at the very least, never satisfied as they continue looking in vain for a way to escape their unpleasant reality. Let me give all the Insulators, Isolators and Inhibitors some candid advice:

1. Please understand that your absence increases the load and burdens of all those left behind by your emotional withdrawal.

2. Please realize that your method of escaping from life’s responsibilities and relationships breaks ties that may never be repairable.

3. Please recognize that escapism, while appearing to offer relief for your emotional hurts, is in reality robbing your soul of God’s sufficient grace. Only God’s grace can heal your hurts.

4. Please return to your friends of a lifetime and the fellowship of God’s people – you're needed and loved.

History Or Destiny?

November 6th, 2015

On Sunday evening, October 25th, I preached on one of the greatest life principles ever discovered that was spoken by the Apostle Paul and inspired by the Holy Ghost in the New Testament book of Philippians. In two familiar verses the Apostle reveals this life principle.

Philippians 3:13-14  “Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended, but this one thing I do,  forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before.  I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.”

The Apostle Paul is not just talking about the bad things in his past being forgotten, but the good things as well. In Philippians 3:7, the Apostle writes,But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.” The word Loss in this verse means detriment. In verses 5-6 the Apostle lists seven religious credentials that were now viewed as liabilities.

God wants you and I to understand – we have a limited amount of both Life and Energy. This sounds simple, but it may be the one of the most serious of all life principles. Consider these observations:

1. Everyone and Everything has a History and a Destiny! This is true of every individual
    Christian and every local Church.

2. Each of us have Good History and Bad History. Your past and my past is called
    History (His - Story). It is our story – all you and I can do is read it, but we cannot
    change it.

3. All you can do with your Good History and Bad History is Learn From It and Leave It!
    We must make our History a launching pad for our Destiny! Those who cannot let go
    of Their Past will never embrace Their Potential!

4. You cannot live for Your History and Your Destiny! Rejoice over your Good History,
    and Reject your Bad History. You cannot change the past; all you can do is change  
    the future! You are not limited by Your History; you are only limited by Your Destiny!

5. To reach forth unto Your Destiny, you must first volitionally, purposefully, and
    consciously forget those things in the past, even the ones you once counted as gain!
    You might stop right here and ask the question, “Why is it such a big deal?”

6. Because we only have a limited amount of both Life & Energy! If I use 40%, 50%, or  
    60% of my Energy to focus on My History, then that exact amount is no longer
    available to help me reach My Destiny.

7. Individual people, marriage partners, and church families that focus on Their Past Or
    Their Legacy will rarely reach Their Potential Or Their Destiny, because you can only
    use your Energy to look back or to reach forth. You cannot do both!

8. How do we deal with our past? Financial obligations – make them right; Emotional  
    hurts – forgive them; Personal accomplishments – thank God for them; Wrongs that
    have not been made right – make the necessary restitutions, apologies, or amends.  
    That is putting Your History in proper perspective and reaching forth for Your

You and I had better develop the ability to forgive and move on, or we will stay Crippled, Conflicted and Critical all of our lives. Survival necessitates that we develop the ability to forgive and move on. I don’t just move on because I am nice – I move on because it costs me too much energy to stay angry, and I need my energy to get to where I am trying to go. If I give My History too much Energy, I won’t have the Energy I need to get to My Destiny! How many times have we missed Our Destiny because we kept putting too much Energy into Our History? Put the past to bed and get up and go on today with your Life. I don’t have, and neither do you have the resources to feed both Our Past and Our Potential, Our History and Our Destiny! Our Life is too short and our Energy is too limited.