How you can bring hope to someone…


  1. Acknowledge their REALITY


The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 2 Corinthians 4:4


Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. 1 Peter 3:15



  1. Show them there is A WAY OUT


For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.  But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. 2 Corinthians 4:6-7


  1. Help them change their PERSPECTIVE


We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.  Philippians 4:8-9


  1. Share that GOD IS WITH THEM


So we’re not giving up. How could we! Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace. These hard times are small potatoes compared to the coming good times, the lavish celebration prepared for us. There’s far more here than meets the eye. The things we see now are here today, gone tomorrow. But the things we can’t see now will last forever. 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 (The Message)

The Lion King

  • Sorry the recording didn’t start at the beginning of the message, I was having trouble with my microphone – Mike


This is what the Lord says— “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. Isaiah 43:18-19


A couple of points about living in the past…


  1. People stuck in the past cannot move forward


Indeed, if others have reason for confidence in their own efforts, I have even more!  I was circumcised when I was eight days old. I am a pure-blooded citizen of Israel and a member of the tribe of Benjamin—a real Hebrew if there ever was one! I was a member of the Pharisees, who demand the strictest obedience to the Jewish law.  I was so zealous that I harshly persecuted the church. And as for righteousness, I obeyed the law without fault.

Philippians 3:4-6 (NLT)


  1. People living in the past cannot reach their potential


I once thought these things were valuable, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done.  Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with him. Philippians 3:7-9 (NLT)


Leave the past behind through…


  1. Confession


Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. Philippians 3:13


Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.  James 5:16


  1. Forgiveness


For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. Matthew 6:14-15


 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:13-14

Am I Good Enough?

Four things that we learn from the rich young ruler:


First, his view of his goodness was superficial & empty.


You know the commandments: ‘You shall not commit adultery, you shall not murder, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.’” “All these I have kept since I was a boy,” he said. Luke 18:20-21


Secondly, he was not as good a person as he thought he was.


Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin. Romans 3:20


“You shall have no other gods before me!” Exodus 20:3


Third, he knew that he was not good enough.


A certain ruler asked him, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Luke 18:18


Fourth, he was unwilling to do the one thing that was necessary.


When he heard this, he became very sad, because he was very wealthy. Luke 18:24


Something to Think About…

  • Even good people need to be saved.
  • You can never be good enough to earn salvation
  • All can be saved but not everyone will because some refuse to give in to God.
  • Good people and bad people are both saved by repenting of their sins and placing your faith in Jesus. (Acts 20:20-21)

It All Starts Today

8-10 Don’t run up debts, except for the huge debt of love you owe each other. When you love others, you complete what the law has been after all along. The law code—don’t sleep with another person’s spouse, don’t take someone’s life, don’t take what isn’t yours, don’t always be wanting what you don’t have, and any other “don’t” you can think of—finally adds up to this: Love other people as well as you do yourself. You can’t go wrong when you love others. When you add up everything in the law code, the sum total is love. 11-14 But make sure that you don’t get so absorbed and exhausted in taking care of all your day-by-day obligations that you lose track of the time and doze off, oblivious to God. The night is about over, dawn is about to break. Be up and awake to what God is doing! God is putting the finishing touches on the salvation work he began when we first believed. We can’t afford to waste a minute, must not squander these precious daylight hours in frivolity and indulgence, in sleeping around and dissipation, in bickering and grabbing everything in sight. Get out of bed and get dressed! Don’t loiter and linger, waiting until the very last minute. Dress yourselves in Christ, and be up and about! Romans 13:8-14 (The Message)


The behaviours you “let in” become the behaviours you are “set in.”


Remember this when you think about where you will be in five years…


  1. TIME is not on your side.


You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Everyone is but a breath, even those who seem secure. Psalm 39:5


Teach us to number our days that we may gain a heart of wisdom. Psalm 90:12


“All people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord endures forever.” 1 Peter 1:24-25


 2. Future you is simply an EXAGGERATED VERSION of current you.


Whoever seeks good finds favor, but evil comes to one who searches for it. Proverbs 11:27


The desires of good people lead straight to the best, but wicked ambition ends in angry frustration. Proverbs 11:23 (MSG)

Holy Living in an Unholy World

Christianity – Christ = Religion


So if we want to live authentic Christian lives – if we want to live a holy life in an unholy world, there are three things we have to be willing to do.


We have to be willing to…


  1. Stop dating God


Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment.” Matthew 22:37-38


  1. Get out of the greenhouse_


So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness. Colossians 2:6-7


  1. To run into the burning building


All the people, experiencing the thunder and lightning, the trumpet blast and the smoking mountain, were afraid—they pulled back and stood at a distance. The people kept their distance while Moses approached the thick cloud where God was. Exodus 20:18, 21 (The Message)

Breaking the Dysfunction Cycle

“And as I hung up the phone it occurred to me, he’d grown up just like me—my boy was just like me.” Cat’s in the Cradle by Harry Chapin


God’s solution for dysfunctional families…


  1. Examine the problem.


We are all members of a dysfunctional family.


As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. Ephesians 2:1-3



  1. Understand God’s Solution:


Jesus’ intervention broke the cycle of dysfunction.


But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. Ephesians 2:4-7



  1. Move beyond recovery


We need to give away what we now possess.


For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Ephesians 2:8-10


Some of the typical behaviours seen in dysfunctional families:



  • Pretending to not hear you; moving the conversation the direction that suits them.
    • Completely ignoring you.
    • Walking out of the room when you walk in.
    • Creating allegiances and scapegoats.


Emotional blackmail

  • Guilt-trips.
    • Criticisms, blame.
    • Resentment.
    • Blocking opportunities to express emotion.


Verbal attacks

  • Direct Accusations (aimed at you).
    • Indirect Accusations (aimed at you via others).


Role shifting

  • Forcing sons and daughters into surrogate parent or sibling roles, such as parents looking for approval off children or passing responsibility to children for their issues.
    • Crossing boundaries such as making inappropriate requests, constantly asking for money or sacrificing personal time to fix their problems.
    • Burdening with worries, especially around health.
    • Sharing too much private information, such as confiding about their relationship with your mother or father.
    • Interfering and trying to control situations for example forcing your hand in decisions surrounding career, relationships or life, etc.

Why Won’t You Change?

The greatest problem of all, when it comes to broken relationships, may be the inability to change.


Every relationship you have has three levels:


  1. Spirit: is the first thing you “touch” in a relationship with another person.


  1. Soul: is made up of the intellect, will and emotions


  1. Body: if appropriate, a relationship enters the third level with appropriate touch


A general rule of thumb is: whatever dishonours another person usually closes their spirit.


Five Attitudes to Open a Person’s Spirit…


Attitude #1: Become soft & tender with the person.

Attitude #2: Understand what the other person has gone through

Attitude #3: Acknowledge the hurt and admit any wrongdoing

Attitude #4: Use gentle touch

Attitude #5: Seek forgiveness and wait for a reply

Forgiveness means to “release, set free, to untie.”