COMMUNION -- EIGHT REASONS WE GET STUCK....
LifeCare Communion Service 9/22/11
Listen to the audio for more in depth information on this lesson.
Ever been stuck? Stuck in traffic, stuck at a train track, stuck in an elevator, stuck in a ditch..stuck on the side of the road? stuck in gum?
What kind of emotions and thoughts happen when you are stuck?
My Vega story – gas pedal stuck – ended up in a ditch – never going to get out of there without some help.. been there?
traffic jam – start texting – letting everyone know we’re going to be late, looking for a way around it… another quick exit
Let’s face it… none of us really like being stuck.. or do we?
Eight Reasons We Get Stuck
1) We avoid putting the biblical principles into practice that we have already learned.
Maybe we have ‘selective obedience’?
“Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit”
- Galatians 5:25
Sometimes we simply try to rush through our healing.. rush to our growth… we have to remember it is a process but at the same time, as God gives us revelation, we must put it into practice.
2) We have not completely surrendered our life and will to the Lord.
“For good judgment and common sense, trust in the Lord completely; don’t ever trust in yourself. In everything you do, put God first, and he will direct you and crown your efforts with success.”
- Proverbs 3:5-6
We have to ask ourselves what part(s) of our lives we are still holding on to.. trying to control, fix, handle?…We must let God be the Lord & Manager of our lives.
3) We have not fully accepted Jesus’ work on the cross for our forgiveness.
I think the real issue here is: have you forgiven yourself? That’s where I see most people get stuck and not able to move on..
4) We really have not forgiven others who have harmed us.
“After you have suffered a little while, our God, who is full of kindness through Christ, will give you his eternal glory. He personally will pick you up, and set you firmly in place and make you stronger than ever.” - 1 Peter 5:10-11
As we consider forgiveness, we cannot avoid dealing with suffering.. and for many of us.. it is a huge struggle and an added suffering we go through when we push through the process of forgiveness. Keep at it! That is what God requires… ask Him for His grace to forgive…Until we are able to let go of debt/ release it to the Lord, we will remain a prisoner. ‘letting go of a caged bird to discover the bird is you’
5) We are afraid of the risk in making the necessary changes in our lives.
“Fear not, for I am with you. Do not be dismayed…I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.”
– Isaiah 41:10
What are some of our fears related to making changes in our lives:
- fear of failure - fear of intimacy – fear of rejection - fear of being hurt (again) - fear of the unknown
My life is a mess, my relationships are a mess, but at least I know what to expect… all together now: “A mess!” We get comfortable with our ‘unhealthiness’.
6) We are not willing to “own” our responsibility.
“Examine me, O God, and know my mind: test me, and discover….if there is any evil in me and guide me in the everlasting way” - Psalm 139:23
None of us is responsible for everything that happens to us.. however, we are responsible for how we respond to it.
Discuss abuse here
7) We have not developed an effective support team.
“Be with wise men and become wise. Be with evil men and become evil” – Proverbs 13:20
Are you letting people help you… support you, encourage you, challenge you, hold you accountable?
8) We have a lack of knowledge in spiritual warfare.
“Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand…
…Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace…
…In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God…
…And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.” – Ephesians 6: 13-18
How can we overcome?
They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.
Tonight is an opportunity to celebrate what God has already done in our lives… it is also our opportunity to get unstuck – to overcome…or keep from getting stuck.
Do you realize that physical exercise helps us fight off colds and infections? The theory is that a good workout puts our body in a condition similar to what happens at the onset of a fever. A fever is the body’s way of fighting back when intruders get into our system. Increased body temperature aids our white blood-cell defense system while slowing down the action of bacteria and viruses. Exercise does the same thing. It releases chemicals into the blood that stimulate the brain to make our temperature rise.
We must have regular practices of spiritual exercise that benefit the health of our soul & spirit and keeps us from getting stuck or gets us unstuck.
God’s exercise program is one of faith and obedience. So what can we do?
- if you related to any of the reasons we get stuck, start there..
- follow His instructions (Bible, Holy Spirit promptings)
- walk in love as Christ walked in love
- don’t walk alone – ask for help if needed
- confess your sins and failures to God regularly.. do not allow anything to come between you
The communion table represents that opportunity – a time to confess & receive grace once again - An opportunity to be restored to right relationship with God and an invitation to healing, victory, getting unstuck! And just as physical exercise releases chemicals into the blood for healing.. we will believe, in faith, that this communion, taking the symbolic body & blood of Christ, He will release in us all that is needed to break through – get unstuck if needed or simply move a step further in our personal growth.
Note: portions of this material comes from the Celebrate Recovery principle #8.
EIGHT REASONS WE GET STUCK...GETTING UNSTUCK
1. Do you believe you are stuck? If not, have you ever been stuck before?
Of the 8 reasons... what were the reasons? Share specifics if you are willing.
2. Share with the group how you are going to take steps in one of the Eight areas to break free/ get unstuck or.. simply to take another step in the right direction?
3. Considering what Jesus did for us (connection to communion), what hope can we take in being able to get unstuck or to continue to move forward in our healing/ growth?
4. What is a specific prayer request you have of the group this week as it relates to your walk with Christ and the path to serenity you are on?