Presentation on theme: "Warm-Up Anger Recap: – Express righteous anger. Is it about you, or external to you? Is your aim to improve others or glorify God? – Defuse unrighteous."— Presentation transcript:
Warm-Up Anger Recap: – Express righteous anger. Is it about you, or external to you? Is your aim to improve others or glorify God? – Defuse unrighteous anger. Wanting more at the cross? The lightning strike and the termite.
Series Outline What is it? What does it do to me? How do I kill it?
What is it? Going postal. – How many neighbors report: “Yeah, saw that coming a mile away…” In actuality, the signs are almost always there. – We overlook or ignore them out of fear of being the next target, or out of shame for our own indulgences in bitterness. Yes, the emotional septic tank!
What is it? “Logizomai” – To calculate or to reckon. – God has the right to enter into a ledger our transgressions for those apart from Christ. – We do not get to claim love if we attempt to do the same. – Love “thinks no evil.” – Love “keeps no record of wrongs.” I Corinthians 13:5(b)
What is it? You may think resentment is your own internal issue, but it communicates to God: – Go ahead and forgive him if you want to, but “the State of Mississippi ain’t so forgivin’…” – “Your blood wasn’t quite enough.” – “I hold some form of superiority over You.”
What does it do to me? Resentment destroys you spiritually from the inside out and invariably causes damage to those around you. – Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled; Hebrews 12:14-15 – (Romans 12:18)
What does it do to me? Resentment is also, unfortunately, an heirloom disease. – Volunteer reading: 1 Kings 2:1-6 According to Jesus’ standard, good King David committed murder twice in his life.
What does it do to me? Resentment exacts a terrible physical toll on its master. – Ironically, resentment is directed outward, but damages inward as its target operates freely from direct contact with your wrath. Resentment has a tendency to rewire your very thinking, causing deep damage that is difficult to reverse. – Corrie Ten Boom and the Nazi Guard.
What does it do to me? Resentment feeds on the power of the false illusion that you are the one in control. You like to somehow reckon that you have the upper hand…the triumphant silent sufferer…are somehow righteous in it. Acid Test: – If confronted with a request to forgive, how would you respond? This tells you if you are truly “in control” of these feelings.
How do I kill it? You must understand the GRAVITY of resentment in God’s eyes. Some of the most serious and severe warnings from Jesus have to do with an unforgiving heart. Why? The Bible commends us to turn the cheek, walk an extra mile, heap kindness upon insult. Scriptures scream with the warning to turn back from this giant! Why?
How do I kill it? Scattered throughout the first Book of “Good News” is some very bad news about an unforgiving heart. The if-then relationships suggested by Jesus are hard to process. Salvation is not through works, but Jesus is clearly showing a linkage between your willingness to forgive and your capacity to receive forgiveness from God.
How do I kill it? Worst-case scenario: – Failing to forgive others is a sign that you have not truly repented and are not living a life in Christ. – Unlike “typical” Christian sins (periodic or passionate failures), resentment is a chosen lifestyle of long-term disobedience. – When we turn to Christ, we repent of our sin and we ask Him to change our hearts and lives to live under His power.
How do I kill it? Best-case scenario: – As in the history of Israel in the Old Testament, God withholds His fellowship and blessing in a loving effort to correct His children and restore the broken relationship. NEITHER alternative is particularly pleasant compared to the chore of surrendering resentment.
How do I kill it? STEP 1: Think it through. – Do you fantasize about catching your prey in the right circumstances so that you can enjoy the sweet taste of victory? – Do you desire pain and/or suffering equal or greater than your own? – Do you regard yourself with pride as being the superior party in an unresolved conflict?
How do I kill it? STEP 2: Write it down. – You might be surprised or disappointed about how your pent-up offense looks on paper. – Often, the scope and injustice stored in one’s mind does not conform with reality. – Imagine yourself before the cross of Christ, pleading your case as he bears your sins and those of whom you are accusing.
How do I kill it? STEP 3: Work it out. – Buy yourself a punching bag. – Start with little steps…set up code-words or practices with your spouse to defuse anger as it happens. – PRAY ABOUT IT! Ask God to take it from you. Cross-reference the Giant of Temptation. God will answer your prayer!
How do I kill it? STEP 4: Talk it over. – Talk to God about it, in every glorious detail. – He already knows about it! – Seek God’s forgiveness for your own sins. Bitterness and resentment are often signs of PERSONAL unforgiveness. Do you have something you haven’t forgiven yourself for?
How do I kill it? STEP 5: Give it up. – Clara Barton: “I distinctly remember forgetting it.” – Ridding yourself of resentment is an active and deliberate step on your part. – It may or may not involve direct confrontation with its target. Does a relationship need to be restored? Would the person be shocked, embarrassed, or otherwise taken down by the revelation? Easier: Do they know about it?
Kill Shot DO NOT FLIRT with what God means by withholding forgiveness as you withhold it. DO NOT put yourself on a pedestal where you demand a higher standard for forgiveness than Jesus did. DO actively seek to rid your heart of resentment through prayer, more prayer, reconciliation, and then some more prayer.