Faithlife Sermons

Manifestations of the Flesh

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To cope when things aren’t going right or going my way, I tend to…

become self-absorbed (self-consumed) by:

  • becoming overly introspective
  • feeling sorry for myself
  • engaging in self-pity
  • getting depressed by stuffing my anger and frustrations
  • beating up on myself (hating myself)
  • focusing on my suffering and trials to get attention
  • playing the role of a victim/martyr

withdraw (isolate myself) by:

  • becoming aloof (pull away)
  • going into a shell
  • running and hiding (escape)
  • distancing myself from others
  • avoiding others (becoming a loner)
  • becoming unapproachable
  • being overly introverted
  • retreating to the silent treatment
  • not communicating

become obsessed with:

  • accomplishments
  • recognition
  • status
  • how I look
  • what others think of me
  • my physical health
  • the past (especially past hurts and past failures)
  • a devotion to a cause
  • structure, order, rules, regulations

escape pain/pressure through:

  • carousing
  • sex
  • drugs/alcohol
  • talking
  • staying busy
  • school
  • television
  • sleep
  • athletics
  • religion
  • hobbies/games
  • reading
  • computers
  • fantasy
  • pornography
  • movies
  • entertainment
  • overeating
  • religious activity & service
  • becoming a workaholic
  • work (career, business, job)
  • gloom & doom thinking (refuse to see the positive)

become self-disciplined (self-reliant) by:

  • becoming a perfectionist
  • overcompensating by trying even harder so as not to fail
  • becoming legalistic
  • living “by the book”
  • living by rules (have to’s, should’s, must’s, ought’s)
  • becoming too hard and strict on myself and others
  • setting unrealistic standards for myself and others
  • basing acceptance (of self and others) on performance
  • fearing making mistakes

become self-indulgent (self-gratifying) by:

  • becoming impulsive (hasty)
  • buying things to feel better
  • assuming “if it feels good, do it”
  • becoming compulsive (lacking self-control)
  • lusting (craving) for: alcohol, drugs, caffeine, sex, sugar, junk food, cigarettes

become anxious (worry and fret) by:

  • becoming fearful (apprehensive)
  • lacking peace and rest
  • becoming paralyzed (go numb)
  • becoming paranoid (overly suspicious)
  • seeking astrology, horoscopes, fortune telling (tarot cards, palm reading, Ouija boards, etc.) and/or the occult for guidance and strength

become dominant by:

  • becoming dictatorial (bossy)\
  • becoming demanding (pushy)
  • becoming overbearing (controlling)
  • becoming manipulative
  • intimidating others
  • demanding my rights

try to stay in control through:

  • blackmail (making threats)
  • manipulation (using coercion)
  • profanity (swearing)
  • the silent treatment
  • passivity (play helpless)
  • not eating (anorexia/bulimia)
  • use of guilt
  • favoritism

come across as insensitive

  • uncaring
  • indifferent
  • unsympathetic

To cope when things aren’t going right or going my way, I tend to…

become complacent (nonchalant) by:

  • saying things like “it doesn’t matter … it’s OK”

challenge others by:

  • resisting authority
  • becoming uncooperative (unteachable)
  • causing dissension (strife)
  • irritating (aggravating) others
  • becoming argumentative, rigid, inflexible, close-minded, stubborn, obstinate, unreasonable or unyielding

become pessimistic by:

  • lacking confidence and optimism
  • becoming skeptical (suspicious)
  • distrusting others, myself, God, church, and/or government
  • expecting the worst
  • assuming the worst case scenario to protect myself from disappointment and pain
  • never being satisfied or content
  • never being pleased with self/others
  • becoming jealous of other’s success and happiness

develop a critical attitude by:

  • finding fault with others, myself and everything around me
  • nit-picking things to death
  • becoming judgmental (opinionated)
  • becoming prejudiced (intolerant)
  • complaining a lot (becoming negative)

become hostile (vent my anger) by:

  • becoming unfriendly (cynical)
  • becoming hateful (malicious)
  • becoming harsh (cruel and brutal)
  • becoming sarcastic (caustic)
  • having a quick temper

become self-assured (self-confident) by:

  • depending on myself instead of God
  • becoming proud (haughty)
  • becoming egocentric (acting Pompous)
  • bragging (being boastful)
  • becoming arrogant (cocky)\
  • having a superior attitude (saying in effect: I must always be right…; I must always win…; I must always be the best)
  • pretending to know it all
  • becoming conceited (smug)
  • having difficulty asking for help

become self-righteous (self-justifying) by:

  • becoming defensive
  • covering up and hiding mistakes
  • assuming I am never the problem
  • pointing to someone or something else as the problem
  • avoiding taking responsibility for failure or problems
  • becoming critical of others (blaming others)
  • having difficulty:

- admitting I was wrong

-  apologizing

- asking for forgiveness

-  expressing gratitude

become tense (nervous and agitated) by:

  • finding it hard to relax
  • becoming restless (high strung)
  • becoming impatient

become emotionally insulated by:

  • keeping people at a distance
  • becoming inhibited (bottling up emotions)
  • avoiding intimacy
  • denying feelings, having difficulty expressing feelings and opinions openly and honestly
  • becoming unable to express love in a meaningful way

deny reality by:

  • ignoring problems and hoping they will go away
  • denying anything is bad or wrong
  • lying (mislead)
  • deceiving others and myself
  • exaggerating (overstate matters)
  • playing games to hide real intent
  • conning people to get what I want

hold a grudge (be resentful) by:

  • becoming moody (sulk)
  • harboring bitterness
  • becoming unforgiving
  • keeping a scorecard of wrongs done to me or by me
  • trying to get even (seeking revenge)
  • wanting others to fail or get hurt
  • punishing myself or others

fight unfairly (take cheap shots) by:

  • becoming slanderous (misrepresent the actual situation)
  • gossiping (talking behind other’s backs)
  • engaging in passive-aggressive behavior (i.e. using humor to hide real feelings, becoming sarcastic, refusing to communicate, becoming passive, forgetting things, procrastinating, being late, etc.)

To cope when things aren’t going right or going my way, I tend to…

put up a front (can’t be real) by:

  • faking it (hiding what I really think and feel)
  • putting on a show (performing) to get attention and impress others
  • becoming pretentious (phony, unreal)
  • becoming superficial (plastic)
  • becoming gushy (too sentimental)

lack compassion:

  • kindness,  understanding, gentleness and love

live by y feelings by:

  • becoming too subjective (believing that truth is only what I feel)
  • believing I’m OK only when I feel okay
  • becoming too sensitive to criticism
  • becoming hypersensitive
  • taking things too personally
  • reading in rejection when it isn’t there, or setting things up to bring about rejection
  • becoming touchy (irritable)
  • being controlled by anger, doubts, emotions, fear, etc.

become a pleaser (be nice) by:

  • trying to be all things to all people
  • trying to do the “proper/correct” thing
  • trying to keep everyone happy
  • trying to keep peace at all cost
  • avoiding conflict at all cost
  • becoming a doormat (letting others take advantage of me)
  • expressing to others what I think they want to hear
  • giving in to others too easily
  • becoming controlled by others
  • having difficulty: saying no, setting boundaries, standing up for myself
  • becoming overly compliant
  • becoming too submissive

become passive (lack initiative) by:

  • quitting too easily (giving up)
  • not taking chances
  • playing it safe (pulling back and waiting)
  • waiting for someone to tell me what to do and how to think
  • depending on others instead of God
  • vacillating (becoming too changeable)
  • becoming indecisive (not making decisions)
  • wanting someone else to make the decision for me
  • avoiding failure at all cost
  • procrastinating (putting things off)
  • becoming irresponsible (becoming unreliable)
  • becoming lazy, apathetic, lethargic

becoming self-deprecating (self-condemning/self-critical) by:

  • assuming I am always the problem
  • becoming overly apologetic
  • becoming too hard on myself
  • having difficulty: receiving love, receiving compliments, receiving forgiveness, forgiving myself
  • clinging (becoming a leech) to those who finally accept me
  • becoming uncomfortable with success

become a caretaker (rescuer) by:

  • becoming overprotective
  • taking responsibility for other’s feelings (becoming overly responsible)
  • making decisions for others
  • giving unsolicited advice
  • trying to prevent other’s failures
  • becoming possessive (selfish)
  • becoming a busybody (becoming too involved in other’s affairs)
  • becoming preachy (lecturing others)
  • trying to find someone who needs me and whom I can rescue
  • nagging (badgering)
  • talking too much and listening poorly

becoming overly serious by:

  • becoming stoical (unemotional)
  • having trouble dealing with feelings
  • becoming overly analytical
  • becoming stern (solemn/formal)
  • lacking joy for life
  • not being fun to be with
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