Archive for November, 2012

Where Is Your Happiness?

R.C Sproul makes the statement in his book Unseen Realities, “We get confused between happiness and pleasure. Sin brings pleasure, but never happiness. We haven’t learned that yet; we won’t learn it until we find our only happiness in God and in the things of God, when we enter into the heavenly state. In the meantime, we’re subject to these seductive advances by satan, who makes sin look good to us, with the promise of pleasure.” Is your happiness fully in the Lord? More than likely it’s not. If I had to guess there is something in your life that you are mad, upset and angry at God for. I’ve had things in my life that I just hated God for, things that have happened to me, things He allowed, and prayers I didn’t see Him answering. I once made a four page list of all the things I was angry at God for. God doesn’t get mad or upset at us, if we are angry at Him, He welcomes that. God had to walk me through that four page list and He helped me deal with each thing on that list. The more I have come to understand who He is and His grace the more I see how much He loves me, and truly cares for me. I am His child, and there have been so many areas in my life He has had to heal and there are still things in my life we are working on. There comes a point in our lives where we have to choose to either run hard towards God or just continue to listen to the lies of the enemy and just be mad and upset at God. When we stay upset and angry at God, sin will have its way with us. Go hard after God. The last few weeks I’ve been really studying some very deep truths on who God is, and my brain just cannot fully understand theses’ truths. I believe them, but to truly comprehend them is rocking my world. The one thing that has been coming out of my study time is a deeper love of God, and a thirst for more of Him. This has turn into happiness for God. When our joy and happiness is in God, sin tends to not taste so good anymore. If your upset at God take it to Him and let Him know how you are feeling, it won’t be a shock to Him, since He already knows what you are thinking. Let God bring healing to those areas of your life that you need to have healed. When your happiness and joy is in God, sin tends to have a different look.

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Why Do We Act Out?

There are a number of reasons why one might turn to pornography, and I want to look at two that we at Refuge think is more of the underlining reasons why one goes to pornography. They both go hand in hand. One of the things we want guys to do is try to identify if there is a hurt or wounded that they received from someone when they were in their childhood or teenage years. Now some people can pinpoint this directly and they now specific what the wound is. Often there is more than one, and God has to show us what those are as well. We are born into relationships, and as a child, our closest relationship we have is with our parents or those who raise us. A break in the relationship occurs when something is said to us or done to us which causes an emotional wound. More than likely there is more than one break, there are many. This can come in the form of rejection, abandonment, physical, mental or sexual abuse. What normally happens is once the child is hurt they will try to bridge back their need of love, acceptance, worth/approval and security. Often the bridge doesn’t get fixed by the one that has broken it. At the point of the wound that child comes to believe something about themselves and something about God. Now if the one who has caused the wound reaches out to the child depending on the kind of wound it was the bridge is fix. Left untreated over time the break cause guilt, shame, anger, fear and pain. As that child grows up and moves into their teenage years or into their adult years they try to find ways to numb the pain. One of those ways is with porn, its escapism, and that will on last a little while because there is still pain. So they go to the next thing and the next. Only God can heal that wound so that it won’t hurt anymore, and what needs to happen is God has to show that person what He (God) has to say about what happened. When I started listening to what God had to say about my wounds, this was when I started to have victory over my sin, and healing started to take place in my life. Thomas Aquinas makes the statement, “Every sinful behavior is rooted in a legitimate God-given appetite.” If this is true, those who are acting out sexually are really crying out to God. This brings us to our second reason why people act out. There are four basic needs every human needs to have met in their lives: Love, Acceptance, Worth/Approval and Security. There is no one on the face of this earth that can truly meet those needs in our life except God. These are God given needs, and when we are not having those needs meet we turn to things that we think are going to meet them. Nothing on this earth can, but for a lot of people, they think porn can. Now Porn and sex will give you anything you want, take you anywhere you want to go, always free on the front end. But it will never fill that place in your heart, only Jesus can fill that and satisfy that. Why do we act out? We are looking to fill a wound in our lives or to have needs meet. Only Christ can heal wounds and meet our needs. Think about that the next time you are tempted to go to porn.

A Prayer

Infinite and eternal Majesty! Author and Fountain of being and blessedness! how little do we poor sinful creatures know of thee, or the way to serve and please thee! We talk of religion, and pretend unto it; but, alas! how few are there that know and consider what it means! How easily do we mistake the affections of our nature, and issues of self-love, for those divine graces which alone can render us acceptable in thy sight! It may justly grieve me to consider, that I should have wandered so long, and contented myself so often with vain shadows and false images of piety and religion; yet I cannot but acknowledge and adore thy goodness, who hast been pleased, in some measure, to open mine eyes, and let me see what it is at which I ought to aim. I rejoice to consider what mighty improvements my nature is capable of, and what a divine temper of spirit doth shine in those whom thou are pleased to choose, and causest to approach unto thee. Blessed be thine infinite mercy, who sentest thine own son to dwell among men, and instruct them by his example as well as his laws, giving them a perfect pattern of what they ought to be. O that the holy life of the blessed Jesus may be always in my thoughts, and before mine eyes, till I receive a deep sense and impression of those excellent graces that shined so eminently in Him! And let me never cease my endeavours, till that new and divine nature prevail in my soul, and Christ be formed within me.

By Henry Scougal from his book “Life of God In The Soul of Man”

Henry Scougal (1650 – 1678) was a godly young Scotch Puritan who produced a number of works in his brief life while a pastor and professor of divinity at King’s College, Aberdeen. His greatest production is by consensus, The Life Of God In The Soul Of Man, which was originally written to a friend to explain Christianity and give spiritual counsel. This short treatise displays unusual perception and maturity for one so young. In fact, this work was almost universally well-spoken of by the leaders of the Great Awakening, including George Whitefield, who said he never really understood what true religion was till he had digested Scougal’s treatise. In addition to his literary productions, Henry Scougal was also noted for his piety and his clear grasp of scripture, aided in turn by his proficiency in Latin, Hebrew, Greek, and some of the cognate oriental languages. Taken out of the world at the young age of twenty-eight by tuberculosis, perhaps the words preached at his funeral service most aptly characterize the man, for there it was declared of Henry Scougal that – “he truly lived much in a few years and died an old man in eight and twenty years.”

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