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Destroying shame with regeneration

Finding our worth in God's truth  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Destroying shame with regeneration from Robert S. McGee's Search for Significance books and dvd series.

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I’ll never change

God gave us a unique body and mind that he made to hold all the truth, love, joy, and peace that he wanted to give us. But instead of this our lives are full of ugly, nasty lies.
What thoughts do you have that you think are pleasing to God, and which ones are polluted?
When someone first explained Christ’s love and forgiveness to you, how did you respond?
So many of us have piles and piles of guilt and blame inside us.
Do you think that all this stuff inside you that is bad can be cleaned out with a little determination and self-control? Or, is it tied to who you are and what you think about yourself?
God doesn’t just want to save us, but he wants to change us and transform us to become like Jesus Christ in the way we think and act.
Is this possible?

Shame

What is shame? It is deeper and stronger than guilt. Shame is the belief that we did something wrong, and because of this, we are not a good person. It personalizes the blame and sees that there is something wrong with us. This is a terrible feeling.
It is more than just a reaction to our mistakes. It is an overriding feeling that we are worthless and rejected. We tell ourselves that the kind of mistakes that we make are expected from somebody who is such a failure as we are. We expect the worst out of ourselves because we believe that is who we are. We know that we are no good on the inside.
This is the last lie we will be looking at.

Lie #4: I am what I am. I cannot change. I am hopeless

We tell ourselves that nothing works. I just can’t be fixed, therefore I must just live with it.

A test to see if we are living in shame

I often think about past failures or experiences of rejection - don’t think about much else then negative things or rejection.
There are certain things about my past that I cannot recall without experiences strong, painful, emotional reactions - haven’t got the messages that have been sent to you.
I seem to make the same mistakes over and over again - in a repetitive pattern it is because our identity is tied to those mistakes, then we don’t think we can do anything else than making those mistakes.
There are certain aspects of my character that I want to change, but I don’t believe I can successfully do so - suffer with inability to never overcome some behavior in their life. They believe that this is all they can have. Why? they can’t overcome it. The behavior has become so identified as them that they are that.
I feel inferior - many very successful people are so because a sense of inferiority drives them.
There are aspects of my appearance that I cannot accept - we can change some aspects, like weight. But this is more like basic appearance, what I look like.
I am generally disgusted with myself - they don’t need anyone to hate them, because they hate themselves more than anybody else could.
I perceive myself as an immoral person - many people because of past failures do not believe that they can live a moral lifestyle
I feel that I have lost the opportunity to experience a complete and wonderful life - Satan tells them that they will never experience joy

Where do these sources of shame come from?

It really comes from our own minds when we believe the negative messages that significant people in our lives tell us.
Family neglect - parents were/are too preoccupied to give them the attention and love they need. parents were/are wrapped up in their own problems like depression, alcohol or drugs. What do our minds think: No time = No care. No care = No value. We can then think that we are not important enough to deserve our parent’s time and attention.
Family control - parents that dominated/dominate their kid’s lives and rule their homes with authoritarian, iron fists. Parents assume they know what is best so they impose their views on them. Feel as though your life is not your own and you can’t do anything to make your parents happy. Self-worth is based on your parent’s demands and desires. Something must be wrong with you if you can’t make decisions on your own.
Family abuse - deepest shame comes from aggressive, attacking families: verbal (sarcastic put-downs) and ridicule, physical (hitting, withholding meals, demeaning labor), and/or sexual abuse (invades the body and usually threatens them to keep it secret).

How does shame destroy us?

Shame does some pretty damaging things to us.
Inferiority - the feeling that the person is not as good as everybody else. Think of themselves as a total loser, not worth anything. Self-destructive behavior - a pessimistic outlook on life, seeing yourself through the eyes of shame. Engage in self-destructive behaviors like eating disorders, drug use, alcohol abuse, reckless living. Self-pity - see themselves as victims and so blame others or condemn themselves for their actions. Withdrawal and isolation - we know we will fail so we don’t try. Find solo activities to avoid interaction with others. Despising appearance - feeling ugly because of comparison to standards of beauty created in one’s own mind. Codependent relationships - become addicted to the feeling of being needed by a family member or friend who has a problem or compulsion.
Inferiority - the feeling that the person is not as good as everybody else. Think of themselves as a total loser, not worth anything.
Self-destructive behavior - a pessimistic outlook on life, seeing yourself through the eyes of shame. Engage in self-destructive behaviors like eating disorders, drug use, alcohol abuse, reckless living.
Self-pity - see themselves as victims and so blame others or condemn themselves for their actions.
Withdrawal and isolation - we know we will fail so we don’t try. Find solo activities to avoid interaction with others.
Despising appearance - feeling ugly because of comparison to standards of beauty created in one’s own mind or from culture.
Codependent relationships - become addicted to the feeling of being needed by a family member or friend who has a problem or compulsion.

Whose voice should you believe?

Do you listen to yourself and the “facts” of different disappointments in your life in order to build your self-worth?
Blame is “hearing the voices of others telling you that you don’t meet the standards they set.”
Shame is hearing your own voice tell you that you are a failure for life and you will never change.
There is a dialogue that is happening, and it can go something like this:
Satan: “Your life is a mistake. It has no purpose or meaning.”
God: “I have made you what you are. In Christ Jesus, you were made to do good works, which I planned in advance for you to live your lives doing.” ()
Satan: “You’ve done so many bad things that God will never accept you or forgive you.”
God: “Those who are in Christ Jesus are not judged guilty.” ()
Satan: “You will never change. What you are is what you always will be.”
God: “If anyone belongs to Christ, they are a new creation. The old things have gone; everything is made new!” ()

The choice

You can break free from Satan’s lies and the evil in your past and be set free to live with new attitudes since God is present in your life, or you can stay stuck in your pride and sinfulness. Which will you choose.
If you listen to what God says, you will here a different story than, “I am what I am. I cannot change. I am hopeless.”
Ephesians 4:20–24 ESV
But that is not the way you learned Christ!— assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.
“to be renewed in the spirit of your minds” or it could be said, “you were taught to be made new in your hearts.”
The way to change is to change what we put in our hearts and minds. We have to stop focusing on certain messages that we play and replay in our heads over and over. These messages have taken root, and are stuck in our minds. We must not believe these lies, but instead believe what God says.

The reality

Our actions and behavior are the direct result of what we believe to be true. Because of this, Satan works hard to get these lies planted in our minds.
We must start to think like God. We must see God as he sees us and yield to God’s way and obey him in our daily actions and choices.

God’s solution

God, however, has given us his word and tells us to read and think about it everyday. We must start to think like God. We must see God as he sees us and yield to God’s way and obey him in our daily actions and choices.
Our mind can be changed and renewed when it is filled with God’s truth. What is this truth?
We must start to think like God. We must see God as he sees us and yield to God’s way and obey him in our daily actions and choices.

Regeneration

What is regeneration? It is when God changes us on the inside so that we are given a new identity. Something happens that makes us completely knew
Titus 3:3–7 ESV
For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
When a person accepts Christ…the old spirit is done away with (God does not use the old spirit, he doesn’t refurbish it or clean it up) and the person is given a new spirit. The Holy Spirit indwells the new spirit to give strength (now we have chance for a new life) and lead the person into all truth (give us power and show us what we need to do, it can begin to move and renew our mind, captivating our thoughts). However, the spirit is surrounded by the emotions and intellect, and is pressured by the body.
Our new spirit is to take dominance (it will grow, we will be able to walk in the Spirit, but we are at war, but we are a new person) as we follow the impute of the Holy Spirit and learn to rely on his power.
God has regenerated us and renewed us by the Holy Spirit. He has made us into a new person, and now, through the Holy Spirit, he is breaking the power of sin in your life. God wants us to fill our minds with him, his word, everyday. He wants us to use his word to change the way we think, the way we talk, and the way we live.
We are in a warfare that demands that we are led by the Spirit of God. We can speak and claim the authority of God. We are here to rule for him. Pray and claim his authority to take place on this earth. We can’t fulfill this role until we understand who we are.
2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
God wants us to read his word everyday, to pray everyday, and to obey him. When we do this, we are pouring into our soul and our mind clean, living water. This water displaces the evil that is in us and the lies and allows us to recognize who we are and be the people we really are.

What next?

God wants us to read his word everyday, to pray everyday, and to obey him. When we do this, we are pouring into our soul and our mind clean, living water. This water displaces the evil that is in us and the lies and allows us to recognize who we are and be the people we really are.
Shame grips us and tells us that we are no good, that we can’t change. But God tells us that we are so valuable that he would give up his Son to provide all that we need to be reconciled to him.
God has made us a part of his family. God has given us a new way of thinking about who we are and our purpose in life.
God wants you to pour his truth into you every day. Day-by-day pouring will bring the change God promises. We must be in a lifetime process to push out the lies and displace them with God’s truth.

A few questions

Which is more powerful: your sin or God’s ability to overcome your sin?
Can man’s sin be superior to Christ’s payment for that sin?
Can God, who spoke the universe into being, make a difference in your life?

Can you say this?

Because of Christ’s redemption, I am a new creation of infinite worth.
I am deeply loved, I am completely forgiven, I am fully pleasing, I am totally accepted by God, I am absolutely complete in Christ.
When my performance reflects my true identity in Christ, that reflection is dynamically unique.
There has never been another person like me in the history of mankind, nor will there ever be.
God has made me an original, one of a kind, a special person.
If you can’t, then you need to hear the message of the Gospel. Not only can’t you meet your own standards of goodness, but you cannot meet the standard of perfection that God has set (You must be perfect as our Heavenly Father is perfect - ). Because of this you are not approved or accepted by God. You know this because often others don’t accept you, nor do you even accept yourself, so how could a perfect God that you have offended and rebelled against accept you (All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God - ; For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight… - ). Because of the holiness and justice of God you should be punished. Intrinsically you know this (For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord - ). There is no way that you can change, you are dead in your trespasses and sins (And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience-among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind - ).
But…God offers the opposite of all of this to you in Christ.
Ephesians 2:4–10 ESV
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
So then, all we have to do to be saved from this evil is:
Romans 10:9–11 ESV
because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.”
Then we can say:
Because of Christ’s redemption, I am a new creation of infinite worth.
I am deeply loved, I am completely forgiven, I am fully pleasing, I am totally accepted by God, I am absolutely complete in Christ.
I am deeply loved, I am completely forgiven, I am fully pleasing, I am totally accepted by God, I am absolutely complete in Christ.
When my performance reflects my true identity in Christ, that reflection is dynamically unique.
When my performance reflects my true identity in Christ, that reflection is dynamically unique.
There has never been another person like me in the history of mankind, nor will there ever be.
There has never been another person like me in the history of mankind, nor will there ever be.
God has made me an original, one of a kind, a special person.
God has made me an original, one of a kind, a special person.
If you feel drawn by God to this, please take a moment to quiet your hearts and pray along with me:
Father, I recognize that I am not perfect as you require to be in your presence. Not only this, but I am far from it. I have wronged you times without number, and also other people that you made in your image. I can see the evil of my rebellion against you and I admit and agree with you that these things deserve your infinite and eternal punishment. But I also can see that you love me so deeply, so completely that you sent Jesus Christ to bear the punishment that I deserve. He took upon himself all of my sins while he was hanging on the cross. He thought about me and was punished because of me. I believe this and recognize this to be true. Therefore, I repent of all of my sins and I agree with you and hate them. I ask for your forgiveness because of the fact that Jesus was held on the cross by them, his blood was poured out to pay for them. I turn from my sin and turn to you. I trust that you have given Jesus my sin and you have given me Jesus’ righteousness. I believe that Jesus died on the cross, but rose again on the third day because his payment was accepted and sufficient. Therefore, I now confess with my mouth that Jesus is my master, and I believe in my heart that he died and was raised from the dead. And now I ask for your Holy Spirit to live in me, giving me a new heart, and making me your child who lives and follows you as both my Father and my Master. I give you thanks and look forward to living my life in your loving presence. Amen.
If you have for the first time believed and confessed, then I want to talk with you to make sure you understand the significance of this day and what to do next.
If you already have done this, or you just did it, you can now say this:
Then we can say:
Because of Christ’s redemption, I am a new creation of infinite worth.
I am deeply loved, I am completely forgiven, I am fully pleasing, I am totally accepted by God, I am absolutely complete in Christ.
I am deeply loved, I am completely forgiven, I am fully pleasing, I am totally accepted by God, I am absolutely complete in Christ.
When my performance reflects my true identity in Christ, that reflection is dynamically unique.
When my performance reflects my true identity in Christ, that reflection is dynamically unique.
There has never been another person like me in the history of mankind, nor will there ever be.
There has never been another person like me in the history of mankind, nor will there ever be.
God has made me an original, one of a kind, a special person.
God has made me an original, one of a kind, a special person.
This is what we are to believe and confess. This is what we are taught by God. If you can say this, but if you can’t, I want you to take a moment in your heart to listen to see if God is calling you to himself. Has God opened up your eyes this week and given you a new heart? Has he regenerated you?
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