Freedom Strategies

Freedom Strategies

Real Hurts, Real Freedom-Joseph’s Story (Genesis 37-50)

Message #7;  Rev. Scott Parker

Genesis 37: 23, 28; 39: 19-21; 40: 14, 23; Ephesians 6: 11, 12

 

This side of Jesus’ return, we will continue to face disappointments and hurts in this life.  The good news is that we can learn HOW to face life’s hurts

-without becoming paralyzed or joyless. 

–Joseph’s life is not immune to disappointment and hurt.  In fact, he seems to get hurt in the same way several times over—as soon as the wound appears to heal over, he gets another arrow shot at him, and the wound is open again.

And yet, we know that JOSEPH THRIVES.

Joseph named his firstborn Manasseh and said, “It is because God has made me forget all my trouble and all my father’s household.” [52] The second son he named Ephraim and said, “It is because God has made me fruitful in the land of my suffering.”  Genesis 41:50-52

 

But the story could have taken a different direction

Joseph’s Plan to take his future into his own hands: 

The Cupbearer (Genesis 40: 14, 23)

What if Joseph’s plan had worked?  It would have detoured Joseph:

1)from Pharoah

2)from God- and the restoration of his heart that only God can bring about

 

When we experience a hurt or struggle, something even bigger is taking place:

Struggle=something is at stake, something important hangs in the balance that God is strategically and deeply invested in:   Our HEARTS!

 

God’s power and glory is manifested when we start to become-the people He longs us to be—fully alive  –St. Irenaeus

 

God is committed & invested in the restoring of our hearts: “… he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philip. 1:6

 

We face forces at work which threaten to hinder  that work:  Ephesians 6:  11, 12

“You can call it the devil, call it the Big Lie, call it a fallen world, whatever it is, it ruins most everything we try.”  Steve Krikorian

 FREEDOM STRATEGIES:  Daily Steps toward freedom

1)  Learn to Understand the Hurt that God recorded in your heart, the False Message that gets replayed, and the Situations that push the re-play button.

       –Re-affirm your pledge of forgiveness:  70 x 7  (that might be how long it takes!)

-Pay attention to particularly strong reactions –is a hurt lying underneath?

-Ask Christ to be present in your hurt:  We simply (invite) His presence, then invite Him into our hearts.  He shows us our hearts.  In prayer for the healing of memories, we simply ask our Lord to come present to that place where we were so wounded (or perhaps wounded another).  Forgiving others, and receiving forgiveness, occurs. Walking with God leads to receiving His intimate counsel, and counseling leads to deep restoring.  As we learn to walk with God and hear his voice, he is able to bring up issues in our hearts that need speaking to.  John Eldridge

 

2)  Walk with God:  Continuous Relationship

“Remember, the purpose of this thing called the Christian life is that our hearts might be restored and set free…But restoring and releasing the heart is no easy project.  God doesn’t just throw a switch and poof-it’s done.”  God sends his counselor (Holy Spirit) to walk with us instead.  That tells us it’s going to be a PROCESS.  All sorts of damage has been done to your heart over the years, all sort of terrible things taken in—by sin, by those who (have hurt us), and by our Enemy (Satan)…”

John Eldridge, “Waking the Dead”

 

-Become Intimately Familiar with God’s character & ways:  SCRIPTURE

 

Walk with God through Prayer: 

A guide for a daily conversation with Christ:  A.C.T.S.L.

Adoration:  Acknowledging and appreciating God for who He is

-We remain aware of God’s character in the midst of our hurt & challenges

Confession:  Naming, turning from and being released from our sin against God

-We surrender the things that compete for God’s place in our life

-We are able to forgive others only as we are first forgiven

Thanksgiving:  Identifying and giving God credit for His activity and goodness to us

-We prepare for the “winter” of hard times during the “harvest” of blessing

Supplication:  Going before God in TRUST with our needs and the needs of others

-Healing happens as God becomes our Source and our Security

Listening:  Becoming aware of God’s presence &  NEW THING He is doing in your life

-“Lord, what are you wanting to do (in this situation)?”

-“Lord, what is the new thing that you are doing in my life?”

-“Lord, what are you wanting to show/teach me about who you are?”

 

God’s Desire, Goal and Strategic work in our lives is that we become people for whom “God is everything, and God is enough” (Brennan Manning)

It is in that place that our hearts become healed and free

 

 

 

 

 

 

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