Category: Messages

Letting Go of Resentment

LETTING GO OF RESENTMENT

AS PART OF THE PROCESS OF CHANGE, I WILL IDENTIFY AND RECORD EVERYONE I HAVE HARMED AND THROUGH PRAYER BECOME WILLING TO MAKE RESTITUTION TO THEM.

Matthew 5:23Suppose you are offering your gift at the altar. And you remember that your brother has something against you.”

This scripture in Matthew goes on to say “If you remember someone has something against you leave your gift and go and make peace, then come back and offer your gift.” That tells me the process of making restitution in continued spiritual growth is a big one.

Step eight not always an easy step to take. To let go of all resentment. To give it to God and then go and make peace with the people you resent goes against everything we have ever done in life before. But it is necessary because if we don’t resentment will lead us back down that path of despair.

– Now you are at a turning point in your relationship with God and others how do you feel?

LET GOD LEAD
One day when large groups of people were walking along with him, Jesus turned and told them, “Anyone who comes to me but refuses to let go of father, mother, spouse, children, brothers, sisters—yes, even one’s own self!—can’t be my disciple. Anyone who won’t shoulder his own cross and follow behind me can’t be my disciple. Luke 14:25-27

FOLLOW GOD’S LEAD
Jesus went with them to a garden called Gethsemane and told his disciples, “Stay here while I go over there and pray.” Taking along Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he plunged into an agonizing sorrow. Then he said, “This sorrow is crushing my life out. Stay here and keep vigil with me.” Going a little ahead, he fell on his face, praying, “My Father, if there is any way, get me out of this. But please, not what I want. You, what do you want?” Matthew 26:36-39

SUBMIT TO GOD’S LEADING
So let God work his will in you. Yell a loud no to the Devil and watch him scamper. Say a quiet yes to God and he’ll be there in no time. Quit dabbling in sin. Purify your inner life. Quit playing the field. Hit bottom, and cry your eyes out. The fun and games are over. Get serious, really serious.  James 4:7-9

DON’T RESENT GOD DISCIPLINING YOU
Honor God with everything you own; give him the first and the best. Your barns will burst, your wine vats will brim over. But don’t, dear friend, resent God’s discipline; don’t sulk under his loving correction. It’s the child he loves that God corrects; a father’s delight is behind all this. Proverbs 3:9-12

RESENTMENT
Stop being mean, bad-tempered, and angry. Quarreling, harsh words and dislike of others should have no place in your lives. Ephesians 4:31 TLB

May the God of green hope fill you up with joy, fill you up with peace, so that your believing lives, filled with the life-giving energy of the Holy Spirit, will brim over with hope! Romans 15:13

Want to download the message notes for this message? HERE IT IS

Leviticus 19:17  “Don’t secretly hate your neighbor. If you have something against him, get it out into the open; otherwise you are an accomplice in his guilt.”

James 1:5  If you don’t know what you’re doing, pray to the Father. He loves to help. You’ll get his help, and won’t be condescended to when you ask for it.

Job 5:17  Happy is the person whom God corrects! Do not resent it when he rebukes you.

Romans 8:3  God went for the jugular when he sent his own Son. He didn’t deal with the problem as something remote and unimportant. In his Son, Jesus, he personally took on the human condition, entered the disordered mess of struggling humanity in order to set it right once and for all. The law code, weakened as it always was by fractured human nature, could never have done that. The law always ended up being used as a Band-Aid on sin instead of a deep healing of it.

Prayer: God give me the strength to let go of resentment. To trust you as I go to those I resent to repair relationships

Salvation ~ A Gift From God


Romans 10:5-15 Moses said that a person could become acceptable to God by obeying the Law. He did this when he wrote, “If you want to live, you must do all that the Law commands.” But people whose faith makes them acceptable to God will never ask, “Who will go up to heaven to bring Christ down?” Neither will they ask, “Who will go down into the world of the dead to raise him to life?” All who are acceptable because of their faith simply say, “The message is as near as your mouth or your heart.” And this is the same message we preach about faith. So you will be saved, if you honestly say, “Jesus is Lord,” and if you believe with all your heart that God raised him from death. God will accept you and save you if you truly believe this and tell it to others. The Scriptures say that no one who has faith will be disappointed, no matter if that person is a Jew or a Gentile. There is only one Lord, and he is generous to everyone who asks for his help. All who call out to the Lord will be saved. How can people have faith in the Lord and ask him to save them, if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear, unless someone tells them? And how can anyone tell them without being sent by the Lord? The Scriptures say it is a beautiful sight to see even the feet of someone coming to preach the good news.

 

  1. EVERY PERSON HAS THE OPPORTUNITY TO BE SAVED

If you tell others with your own mouth that Jesus Christ is your Lord and believe in your own heart that God has raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9

 

* Without qualification, this applies to everyone
Jew and Gentile are the same in this respect: they all have the same Lord who generously gives his riches to all those who ask him for them. Anyone who calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved.  Romans 10:12-13

 

* Salvation is specifically offered to individuals, not to groups

 

  1. CONFESSION IS AGREEING WITH GOD THAT WE ARE SINFUL
    * It is the holy spirit who brings conviction to the heart of man

But the fact of the matter is that it is best for you that I go away, for if I don’t, the Comforter won’t come. If I do, he will—for I will send him to you. “And when he has come, he will convince the world of its sin, and of the availability of God’s goodness, and of deliverance from judgment. John 16:7-8

 

God can always point to us as examples of how very, very rich his kindness is, as shown in all he has done for us through Jesus Christ. Because of his kindness, you have been saved through trusting Christ. And even trusting is not of yourselves; it too is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good we have done, so none of us can take any credit for it. It is God himself who has made us what we are and given us new lives from Christ Jesus, and long ages ago he planned that we should spend these lives in helping others. Ephesians 2:7-10

 

*A person first believes with God that he is a sinner and then externalize their agreement with their mouth

Romans 10:10 For it is by believing in his heart that a man becomes right with God; and with his mouth he tells others of his faith, confirming his salvation.

 

Why “with thy mouth?” In this way, we verify our faith and its personal application—unlike a people who when asked whether they are saved say, “Mum told me I was when I was a little girl.”


The salvation that comes from trusting Christ
—which is what we preach—is already within easy reach of each of us; in fact, it is as near as our own hearts and mouths. For if you tell others with your own mouth that Jesus Christ is your Lord and believe in your own heart that God has raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:8-9

  

III. THERE IS AN INITIAL CONFESSION (Step Three) AND CONTINUOUS CONFESSIONS (Step Ten)

Initial confession indicates a change in our position from darkness to light, from death to life, or a rebirth.
Jesus said, “With all the earnestness I possess I tell you this: Unless you are born again, you can never get into the Kingdom of God.” John 3:3

 

*After our transforming experience, we must continue to confess our sins to God for forgiveness
This is the message God has given us to pass on to you: that God is Light and in him is no darkness at all. So if we say we are his friends but go on living in spiritual darkness and sin, we are lying. But if we are living in the light of God’s presence, just as Christ does, then we have wonderful fellowship and joy with each other, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from every sin. If we say that we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and refusing to accept the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he can be depended on to forgive us and to cleanse us from every wrong. And it is perfectly proper for God to do this for us because Christ died to wash away our sins. If we claim we have not sinned, we are lying and calling God a liar, for he says we have sinned. 1 John 1:5-10

  

  1. WHAT MUST WE BELIEVE TO BE SAVED?

 

*Without faith in the resurrection, there can be no salvation
1 Corinthians 15:12-18 Since you believe what we preach, that Christ rose from the dead, why are some of you saying that dead people will never come back to life again? For if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ must still be dead. And if he is still dead, then all our preaching is useless and your trust in God is empty, worthless, hopeless; and we apostles are all liars because we have said that God raised Christ from the grave, and of course that isn’t true if the dead do not come back to life again. If they don’t, then Christ is still dead, and you are very foolish to keep on trusting God to save you, and you are still under condemnation for your sins; in that case, all Christians who have died are lost!

 

*Since Jesus is Lord, He also raised Himself
Christ rose from the dead and will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him. Romans 6:9


Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? Will God? No! He is the one who has forgiven us and given us right standing with himself. Who then will condemn us? Will Christ? No! For he is the one who died for us and came back to life again for us and is sitting at the place of highest honor next to God, pleading for us there in heaven. Romans 8:33-34

 

Jesus said, “this is the miracle I will do for you: Destroy this sanctuary and in three days I will raise it up!” John 2:1

The fact is that Christ did actually rise from the dead and has become the first of millions who will come back to life again someday. 1 Corinthians 15:20

 

*The Holy Spirit, being part of the Triune God, also raised Jesus from the dead.
If the Spirit of God, who raised up Jesus from the dead, lives in you, he will make your dying bodies live again after you die, by means of this same Holy Spirit living within you. Romans 8:11

 

  1. THE RESULT OF THIS BELIEF AND CONFESSION IS SALVATION

*Salvation is an act of God, not us, and it can never be taken away.

 

Jesus promised,” I give them eternal life and they shall never perish. No one shall snatch them away from me, for my Father has given them to me, and he is more powerful than anyone else, so no one can kidnap them from me.” John 10:28-29

 

STOP TRYING TO BE LIKE EVERYBODY ELSE

Archie Boyle 13th September 2020

REMEMBER WHERE YOU WERE BEFORE RECOVERY You went along with the crowd and were just like all the others, full of sin, obeying Satan, the mighty prince of the power of the air, who is at work right now in the hearts of those who are against the Lord. Ephesians 2:2

REMEMBER TO APPRECIATE WHERE YOU ARE NOW We started out bad, being born with evil natures, and were under God’s anger just like everyone else. But God is so rich in mercy; he loved us so much. Ephesians 2:3-4

  • We, too, were foolish and disobedient; we were misled by others and became slaves to many evil pleasures and wicked desires. Our lives were full of resentment and envy. We hated others and they hated us. Titus 3:3

GET SERIOUS ABOUT CHANGING YOUR LIFE If you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ—that’s where the action is. See things from his perspective. Your old life is dead. Your new life, which is your real life—even though invisible to spectators—is with Christ in God. He is your life. Colossians 3:1-3

GOD’S GRACE IS AVAILABLE TO HELP US By God’s grace, without earning it, all are granted the status of being considered righteous before him, through the act redeeming us from our enslavement to sin that was accomplished by the Messiah. Romans 3:24 CJB

HE HASN’T BROUGHT YOU THIS FAR TO DROP YOU I am sure that God who began the good work within you will keep right on helping you grow in his grace until his task within you is finally finished.

HE HAS A PLAN AND A PURPOSE FOR YOU You are set apart for God; and he has accepted you because of what the Lord Jesus Christ and the Spirit of our God have done for you. 1 Corinthians 6:11

EVERYBODY IS INCLUDED This includes you who were once so far away from God. You were his enemies and hated him and were separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions, yet now he has brought you back as his friends. Colossians 1:21

Now you belong to Christ Jesus, and though you once were far away from God, now you have been brought very near to him because of what Jesus Christ has done for you with his blood. Ephesians 2:13

2 Corinthians 5:17  When someone becomes a Christian, he becomes a brand new person inside. He is not the same anymore. A new life has begun!

NEW LIFE IS AVAILABLE TO US ALL THROUGH FAITH IN JESUS
AND DAILY RELATIONSHIP WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT

WHAT GOD CHOOSES, HE CLEANSES – WHAT GOD CLEANSES, HE MOULDSWHAT GOD MOULDS – HE FILLS WHAT GOD FILLS, HE USES

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Repairing Relationships

Matthew 5:9 “You’re blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of competing or fighting. That’s when you discover who you really are, and your place in God’s family.”

 

THOUGHT:

JESUS LOVED ALL

BUT INVESTED IN A FEW

 

“Family and friendships are two of the greatest facilitators of happiness.”
–John C. Maxwell

 

“Treat your family like friends and your friends like family.”.

Welcome To Step Eight

God forgives. Do You?

Matthew 18:21 Peter came to Jesus. He asked, “Lord, how many times should I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?”

STOP! Think about the process of recovery. About all the things God has forgiven you for. About all the things you haven’t dealt with yet because you are not yet strong enough. All the things you know that He will forgive because of His unconditional love for you.

“How many times should I forgive my brother?” As many as it takes to repair the relationship.

Matthew 18:15-16If your brother sins against you, go to him. Tell him what he did wrong. Keep it between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won him back.  “But what if he won’t listen to you? Then take one or two others with you. Scripture says, ‘Every matter must be proved by the words of two or three witnesses.”

  • ­What relationships are you going to need help to repair?








Prayer:
Lord, help me identify relationships I need help to repair

WHY WOULD GOD FORGIVE ME?

GOD FORGIVES OUR MANY SINS

Our sins too much for us— but you get rid of them once and for all. Psalms 65:3

GOD FORGIVES BECAUSE HE LOVE US
My Lord, you are good and merciful. You love all those who call to you for help. Psalms 86:5 ERV

GOD REMOVES OUR IMPURITIES
“It will be as though I had sprinkled clean water on you, for you will be clean—your filthiness will be washed away, your idol worship gone.” Ezekiel 36:25 TLB

WHY SHOULD I FORGIVE OTHERS?

  1. BECAUSE GOD FORGAVE YOU
    Forgive as quickly and completely as the Master forgave you. Colossians 3:13

  2. BECAUSE I WANT TO GET BETTER
    “You can’t get forgiveness from God …… without also forgiving others. If you refuse to do your part, you cut yourself off from God’s part. Matthew 6:14-15

  3. DON’T KEEP TRACK OF OTHERS SINS
    Don’t insist on getting even; that’s not for you to do. “I’ll do the judging,” says God. “I’ll take care of it.” Romans 12:19

Download the Handout

Living Life Recovery


Living Life Recovery is a God-inspired Bible-based Twelve Step Recovery. Founded in 2015 by me whilst a member of the Ferntree Gully Salvation Army.

During participation in Saddleback Church’s 4o Days of Purpose God challenged me, a recovered alcoholic to do something with people with addictions. Through prayer, meditation and communication with the Holy Spirit God delivered to me the concept of Living Life Recovery. At the same time, God delivered to name the name ‘Living Life Recovery’ the ‘Logo’ and the slogan ‘Recovery is about learning to live life but living life is more than just recovery.’

Since 2015 Living Life Recovery has been run in a number of churches throughout Victoria with various degrees of success. In that time I have been also been involved in a number of different Christian Recovery programs, including Celebrate Recovery but God kept prompting me back to Living Life Recovery.

In January 2016 God again prompted me to write the curriculum for Living Life Recovery based on his own experience of recovery since 1987. The result was a Group Discussion Starters’ manual containing three hundred and sixty-five recovery scripture-based recovery thoughts and a Participants workbookcontaining fifty-two Participant Handouts based on the ‘Group Discussion Starters’ manual.

Since becoming a Christian in 1989 my goal and God-given purpose has been to ‘lead people to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ through the process of recovery.’

To that end in 2020 via the website http://livingliferecovery.com I will sharing sharing ‘daily discussion starters’ and weekly ‘participant handouts’ The website will also contain other recovery curriculum and topics produced by me over my 30+ years in recovery. If you or someone you love is suffering the negative effects of addictions and compulsions I encourage you to visit the website throughout 2020 and to get along to a local church in your area or local 12 Step fellowship and establish a support network to help you on the journey. Handouts SampleThe website will also include various “Recovery Message Videos’

I look forward to sharing with you all and growing in faith as we Live Life Recovery together. #Learn  #Recover   #Together

 

 

#2253 Living Life Recovery Message


Recovery_MessagerReading: Genesis 1:26-28 

Focus Verse: God created human beings; he created them godlike, Reflecting God’s nature. Genesis 1:27

Why did God create us?
God spoke: “So they can be responsible for the fish in the sea, the birds in the air, the cattle, And, yes, Earth itself, and every animal that moves on the face of Earth.” Genesis 1:26

How are we to do that?
God spoke: “reflecting our nature” Genesis 1:26

The Spirit of God made me what I am, the breath of God Almighty gave me life! Job 33:4
Send out your Spirit and they spring to life. Psalm 104:30
Everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, rank after rank after rank of angels–everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him.
Colossians 1:16

What does the Bible say about the ‘nature of God?

To understand the ‘Nature of God’ I belive you need to understand the attributes of His character.

1. GOD IS IN CHARGE and He created us to be in charge (vs 28) says ‘Take charge’ God created us to be leaders and to be examples of right living here on earth.

2. GOD IS HOLY and He created us to be Holy.
God said, “I am holy; you be holy.” 1 Peter 1:16

3. GOD IS EVERYWHERE now as human beings it is impossible for us to be everywhere but it is possible for us to be a God influnecing presence everywhere we go. Jesus said, “Go into the world. Go everywhere and announce the Message of God’s good news to one and all.” Mark 16:15

4. GOD KNOWS EVERYTHING again we as humans can’t know everything but we can learn what we need to know to live as God wants us to throughwalking daily with the Holy Spirit.
The Friend, the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send at my request, will make everything plain to you. He will remind you of all the things I have told you. John 14:26

5. GOD IS CONSTANT
Let’s not allow ourselves to get fatigued doing good. At the right time we will harvest a
good crop if we don’t give up, or quit. Galatians 6:9

6. GOD IS LOVE living lives in the ‘Nature of God’ is not easy. But let me tell you from personal experience it is so worth it.
“This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life.” John 3:16

2 Corinthians 5:17 says “We look inside, and what we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it!”

Recovery is not easy! If you want it you will need to work at it and you will need to learn to live in the “Nature of God” It will take time (the most important ingredient in recovery and life) There will be times when you get it wrong and want too quit. Please don’t. Always remember Joshua 1:9 “Haven’t I commanded you? Strength! Courage! Don’t be timid; don’t get discouraged. God, your God, is with you every step you take.”

#2217 Living Life Recovery Message


Recovery_MessagerRomans 8:6 Following after the Holy Spirit leads to life and peace, but following after the old nature leads to death.

OUR ABILITY TO THINK

We differ from animals in that we can observe, think, and arrive at logical conclusions. We are endowed by God, our creator, with understanding.

WE HAVE CHOICES
Romans 6:6-8
Your old evil desires were nailed to the cross with him; that part of you that loves to sin was crushed and fatally wounded, so that your sin-loving body is no longer under sin’s control, no longer needs to be a slave to sin; for when you are deadened to sin you are freed from all its allure and its power over you. And since your old sin-loving nature “died” with Christ, we know that you will share his new life

WE HAVE A GOD WHO LOVES AND SUPPORTS US
Romans 8:27-29 The Father who knows all hearts knows, of course, what the Spirit is saying as He pleads for us in harmony with God’s own will. And we know that all that happens to us is working for our good if we love God and are fitting into His plans. For from the very beginning God decided that those who came to Him—and all along He knew who would—should become like his Son, so that His Son would be the First, with many brothers.

BECAUSE WE HAVE CHOICES AND A GOD WHO LOVES AND SUPPORTS US THE BIBLE SAYS WE HAVE TWO POSSIBLE MINDSETS

OUR OLD WAY OF THINKING

Following the crowd to fit in Colossians 2:18 says “Don’t let anyone declare you lost when you refuse to worship angels, as they say you must. They have seen a vision, they say, and know you should. These proud men (though they claim to be so humble) have a very clever imagination”

God created me to be me and you to be you, so be the best you you can be.

Listening to lies because we don’t want to admit the truth about ourselves and our lives 1 Timothy 6:5  These arguers—their minds warped by sin—don’t know how to tell the truth; to them the Good News is just a means of making money. Keep away from them.

If you ask enough people you are sure to find one who thinks like you and will give you the answers you want to stop you from facing up to the truth of your reality. The Bible says we should Pray about everything; telling God your needs, and thanking Him for His answers. Philippians 4:6

Trusting God to help us to change what we think which will change what we do, Titus 1:15  says “A person who is pure of heart sees goodness and purity in everything; but a person whose own heart is evil and untrusting finds evil in everything, for his dirty mind and rebellious heart color all he sees and hears.”

Changing our thinking patterns is important on a daily basis if we want to change our lives. There is a cliche in Alcoholics Anonymous that says THINK! THINK! THINK! and we all need to discipline ourselves to learn to think before we act on our feelings.

GOD’s WAY OF THIKING

In the Bible Paul says Romans 7:23-25 There is something else deep within me, in my lower nature, that is at war with my mind and wins the fight and makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. In my mind I want to be God’s willing servant, but instead I find myself still enslaved to sin. So you see how it is: my new life tells me to do right, but the old nature that is still inside me loves to sin. Oh, what a terrible predicament I’m in! Who will free me from my slavery to this deadly lower nature? Thank God! It has been done by Jesus Christ our Lord. He has set me free.

For many of us for many years  we have tried in our own strength to achieve and maintain recovery and character change, unsuccessfully and we can relate to what Paul is saying. Now it’s time to learn to listen to Jesus and do the things He tells us to do so we can experience His peace in our lives.

Jesus says: “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart! And the peace I give isn’t fragile like the peace the world gives. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” John 14:27

Ephesians 4:23  says “Your attitudes and thoughts must all be constantly changing for the better.”

1 Corinthians 2:15-16 says “The spiritual man has insight into everything, and that bothers and baffles the man of the world, who can’t understand him at all. How could he? For certainly he has never been one to know the Lord’s thoughts, or to discuss them with him, or to move the hands of God by prayer. But, strange as it seems, we Christians actually do have within us a portion of the very thoughts and mind of Christ.”

1 Corinthians 2:14 says “The man who isn’t a Christian can’t understand and can’t accept these thoughts from God, which the Holy Spirit teaches us. They sound foolish to him because only those who have the Holy Spirit within them can understand what the Holy Spirit means. Others just can’t take it in.”

If we want to understand the thoughts of Jesus and experience the gift of ‘peace of mind’ He talks about we need to change our attitudes and thoughts as we grow daily in faith and understanding of the reality of the opportunities recovery brings to our lives.

lineDeath here means spiritual death, or separation from God. When we constantly think of the flesh and how to gratify ourselves it definitely separateds usfrom God.

Death stands in contrast to a  “life and peace.”

“Life” is eternal or the life of God which Christ imparts into the believer.

Jesus said “Anyone who believes in me will have eternal life.” John 3:15
He also said “My purpose is to give life in all its fullness.” John 10:10

“Peace” is the tranquillity Jesus Christ brings to the heart of the believer who seeks to please God in his spirit.

“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart! And the peace I give isn’t fragile like the peace the world gives. So don’t be troubled or afraid. John 14:27

I have told you all this so that you will have peace of heart and mind. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows; but cheer up, for I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

 

Romans 14:7 says “We are not our own bosses to live or die as we
ourselves might choose.”

 

 

Step Four ~ Week Two


Job 31 2-37what can I expect from God? What do I deserve from God Almighty above Isn’t calamity reserved for the wicked? Isn’t disaster supposed to strike those who do wrong. Isn’t God looking, observing how I live? Doesn’t he mark every step I take? “Have I walked hand in hand with falsehood, or hung out in the company of deceit? Weigh me on a set of honest scales so God has proof of my integrity. If I’ve strayed off the straight and narrow, wanted things I had no right to, messed around with sin,Go ahead, then—give my portion to someone who deserves it.

“If I’ve let myself be seduced by a woman and conspired to go to bed with her, Fine, my wife has every right to go ahead and sleep with anyone she wants to. For disgusting behavior like that, I’d deserve the worst punishment you could hand out. Adultery is a fire that burns the house down; I wouldn’t expect anything I count dear to survive it.

“Have I ever been unfair to my employees when they brought a complaint to me? What, then, will I do when God confronts me? When God examines my books, what can I say Didn’t the same God who made me, make them? Aren’t we all made of the same stuff, equals before God?

“Have I ignored the needs of the poor, turned my back on the indigent, Taken care of my own needs and fed my own face while they languished? Wasn’t my home always open to them? Weren’t they always welcome at my table?

“Have I ever left a poor family shivering in the cold when they had no warm clothes? Didn’t the poor bless me when they saw me coming, knowing I’d brought coats from my closet?

“If I’ve ever used my strength and influence to take advantage of the unfortunate, Go ahead, break both my arms, cut off all my fingers! The fear of God has kept me from these things— how else could I ever face him?

“Did I set my heart on making big money or worship at the bank? Did I boast about my wealth, show off because I was well-off? Was I ever so awed by the sun’s brilliance and moved by the moon’s beauty that I let myself become seduced by them and worshiped them on the sly? If so, I would deserve the worst of punishments, for I would be betraying God himself.

“Did I ever crow over my enemy’s ruin? Or gloat over my rival’s bad luck? No, I never said a word of detraction, never cursed them, even under my breath.

“Didn’t those who worked for me say, ‘He fed us well. There were always second helpings’? And no stranger ever had to spend a night in the street; my doors were always open to travelers.

Did I hide my sin the way Adam did, or conceal my guilt behind closed doors Because I was afraid what people would say, fearing the gossip of the neighbors so much that I turned myself into a recluse? You know good and well that I didn’t.

“Oh, if only someone would give me a hearing! I’ve signed my name to my defense—let the Almighty One answer! I want to see my indictment in writing.Anyone’s welcome to read my defense; I’ll write it on a poster and carry it around town. I’m prepared to account for every move I’ve ever made— to anyone and everyone, prince or pauper.

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Job 31 asks a lot of questions about our character and the way we lived prior to recovery. In the midst of our addictions and problems most of us have experienced loneliness and rejection. Not because people didn’t love us, didn’t like us. But, because our behavior, our attitudes and the way we hurt ourselves and others were too much for them to stand by and watch without interfering.

Job wanted God to show him his failures. He was tired of suffering (if you don’t know the sufferings of Job I suggest you read the book of Job) But Job knew God was merciful and God could show him what he needed to change.

And God can show us too what needs to change in our character to help us become the people He created us to be and living the lives He has planned for each of us.

In recovery we need to take inventory and we need to wrote it down look at verses 35-37 again.

 

“If only someone would give me a hearing! I’ve signed my name to my defense—let the
Almighty One answer! I want to see my indictment in writing. Anyone’s welcome to read my defense; I’ll write it on a poster and carry it around town. I’m prepared to account for every move I’ve ever made— to anyone and everyone, prince or pauper.”

  • We record our sinful attitudes and behaviors so we “can see our indictments in writing.”
  • We record our sinful attitudes and behaviors so when it comes to the process of confession to God and to someone that we trust we won’t be tempted to lie or justify them.
  • We record our sinful attitudes and behaviors to keep us accountable for what we have done and doing something about repenting and making amends for our past.
  • We record what we our sinful attitudes and behaviors so we can see spiritual progress as we walk the road of recovery with God.
  • We record our sinful attitudes and behaviors to stop us from falling back into them.
  • We record our sinful attitudes and behaviors to help us to deal with the shame they have installed in us and with God’s help uninstall them.

Job says “I am prepared to account for every move I ever made.”

Are you? Because that is what it takes to ‘Take an open and honest inventory of our lives.” and let God show us how to change and help us to do it.

We need to honestly examine our character and pray that God will reveal to us anything that exists in our us that we may not have seen up to this stage of our progress in the recovery process.

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