[00:00:00] For me, shame feels like being in the middle of a stage in this like huge auditorium and there's people surrounding you on every step. And everyone's screaming at you. There is no gentleness there, it's loud and it's brash and it's annoying. It hits you over the head consistently. And I think that's what, that's what shame feels like for me, the moment where I felt the most shame was when I first sat out loud that I think I was being abused by men.
[00:00:44] I hated myself because I thought I was being accusatory. I felt like I was lying and trying to tear my family apart. And I was, I was terrified. I think a lot about why I even believe, um, in the first place. And I think the only answer I really come to is if I didn't believe if I, if I didn't believe, I don't know what I mean.
[00:01:13] I, I don't know how I would have been able to move through life because it was just like, that was the only thing, keeping me grounded and keeping me stable now that he he's out of my life. And I just realized how hard I had fought to make it better when that wasn't even my job in the first place. Um, go back to my, to my father to say, Hey, like, you know, you, you might've heard me.
[00:01:38] And, um, I just want to, you know, have a dialogue and figure this out and establish a plan so that like we can move forward together. And he, it never works. It was like, why had this never worked? I would see these, these stories of people forgiving their dads and going back to them after really harming experiences.
[00:01:58] And I was like, why isn't that me? Like, why, why didn't I get that? And I think a lot of the lesson. To learn. There was like, I do have, that is with God. It's been a really slow process, kind of accepting that love again and accepting that I'm worthy of that love. Well, I want to begin by just saying thank you to Christian or having the courage to share his story.
[00:02:27] That's hard. And, uh, you know, it's interesting. Every one of us has a story. You have a story and I have. It's unique to you. You're the only one that has your story, but it's interesting as you contrast stories, uh, the truth is some are harder than others. Some are heavier than others. Some are more difficult and more challenging, but everybody's got a story and there's something really cool when you come to grips with the fact that your story is yours and it's okay to share it.
[00:02:59] It takes a lot of courage. But when you invite people in, it's a wonderful thing. Well, that's really important to what we're talking about today, because we're going to continue today in a series that we started last week, it's called through the valley and we're just kind of pointing out that. And it just seems right now, it'd be a really appropriate time to stop and welcome all of you here.
[00:03:20] Thank you for being here with me and whichever campus you're on, man. We welcome you. And so glad that you're with us as well. And we also have an online community. And so every week I can see from Pennsylvania, Debbie is with us today, as well as lots of people from other places. So I just need you to understand it's kind of a different era of art.
[00:03:40] And God's doing great things. And so without you, it wouldn't be the same. So thanks for being here wherever you are, wherever you're hearing this. So as we continue in the series, let me just say a couple of things. It's a series on mental health. Now, when I say mental health immediately, we start getting uncomfortable.
[00:03:56] Like, Hey God, and mental health got any mental health issues. They don't connect with God. And I want to challenge that. And I started this last weekend and basically I said, the problem is we have a stigma whenever it. Mental health issues. And, and so we hear this and all of a sudden it gets kind of weird and I really want to normalize the conversation.
[00:04:14] I want to take away that weirdness. And I would say so, because if you came to church and you had a leg in a cast, we wouldn't freak out and go, man, what are you doing here? Like, you know, like what happened to you in a weird way? Like you don't belong here, but often when it's some internal stuff, it can get kind of edgy.
[00:04:34] And I just want to deal with. I think because we get weird. Um, we, we distance ourselves from reality and the word reality, and what's real are really going to be important kind of concepts in this series. Um, somebody said it this way. Okay. Emotional illness, they defined as, as avoiding reality at all costs to the degree that you can't face reality is, is that degree of whatever, you know, mental stuff we're struggling.
[00:05:05] And then went on to say that mental health is accepting reality at any cost. So all I'm trying to say is, is in the series as difficult as it might be. I really am challenging us to get real. And when I say get real, I mean, get real with ourselves, get real with God and get real with others. As I began this series last week, I had to say this, I got to say, I'm probably going to say it every week.
[00:05:29] So just kind of get used to hearing it. These are sensitive subjects and I am not unaware. I own a plead with you to understand and believe in my heart. I don't want to say anything, hurtful, nothing at all. I have no intention, no motive, no desire. I am. I am fearful. And I pray for again today before I came out, we prayed that I wouldn't say something that seemed incredibly insensitive because these are incredibly sensitive subjects.
[00:05:55] So please understand that. I want to take us on a journey. And yet I know it's kind of fraught with danger now with all of that said, let's just jump into the word of God. We're going to be in John chapter four. And if you would take a moment to find John chapter four, if you don't have a Bible, I'll read the story to you.
[00:06:10] You'll always get more out of it. If you bring a Bible and become familiar with your own. But John chapter four is a story that's pretty familiar. We've preached on this before. And yet I'm going to try to show you something maybe a little bit different than we've talked about before. If you've never heard this.
[00:06:24] It's a fascinating story. If you've heard this story, please don't tune it out because you've heard it because I want to ask you to do something that maybe you haven't done. And that is, I'm going to ask you to actually put yourself in the story. I want you to imagine that this was you now. Usually when we insert ourselves into the stories of the Bible, we are, we always put ourselves either in the place of Jesus or on the side of the good guys.
[00:06:45] You know what I'm saying? Here? Anyone, anyone like we're not a Pharisee? No, we're the. But for just a moment, I want you to pretend you're not Jesus. Okay. I know it's hard. I know it's hard, but in this, in this moment, you don't get to be Jesus. Jesus is going to have an encounter with a person and I want you to imagine you're the other person.
[00:07:01] Okay. So I'm going to begin this story. It's John chapter four. Let me explain what verse three is all about. He's just basically saying that Jesus was going up from Judea, which is where Jerusalem is. He's going up north into what's called Galilee and there's a middle section called sin. And for lots of historic reasons, Jewish people, avoidance, some area, there's a lot of history.
[00:07:20] I don't have time. It's not important to the story. You just avoid it. Samaritans Jewish people had nothing to do with Samaritans. Jesus does something really bizarre. And then he didn't go around. He went through, and this was an encounter with a person that he finds as he goes through. So verse four says now he had to go through Samaria.
[00:07:36] So he came to a town in Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of ground. Jacob had given to a son. Now Jacob's well was there and Jesus tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well, and it was about noon. When a Samaritan woman came to draw. And Jesus said to her, will you give me a drink? This disciples had gone into town to buy food.
[00:07:57] Now let me stop here and point out something. This is noontime. So she's coming to the well at noon time. What you need to understand in the context of the story is that's not the time you go to the well, you go to the well in the morning or you go to, well, You water your animals in the beginning of the day or the end of the day, not in the middle of the day.
[00:08:12] Cause it's hot. Now the Samaritan woman said to him, you are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink? And then it says in parentheses for Jews do not associate with Samaritans. She's like we don't visit with you. And Jesus answered her. If you knew the gift of God and who it is, it asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living.
[00:08:35] Sir, the woman said you have nothing to draw with. And the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? Are you greater than our father? Jacob who gave us the well and drank from it himself. As did also his sons and his livestock, and Jesus answered everyone who drinks. This water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks, the water I give them will never thirst.
[00:08:54] Indeed. The water I give them will become in them. A spring of living water, a spring of water welling up to eternal life. The woman said to him, sir, give me this water so that I won't get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw. He, he, he told her and I catch this part, listen carefully. He told her, go call your husband and come back.
[00:09:13] I have no husband. She replied and Jesus said to her, you are right. When you say you have no husband, the fact is you have had five husbands and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have said is quite true, sir, the woman said, I can see that you are a prophet. Okay. We're just going to stop there.
[00:09:37] We're going to get back to the story. And just a minute, I just want to put that out there. Cause I want to ask him. I want to ask some questions. I mean, when you hear this story, I mean, it's just kind of fascinating. How would you react if you just met somebody randomly and you met them at a place and all of a sudden you met her at a bar or something, and all of a sudden that person just looks at you and just blurted out like your most embarrassing story, the part of your life that you're most ashamed of.
[00:10:07] He just blurts it out and he. You'd be going like, who are you? How do you even know that? And then you'd be wrestling with what he actually said, but which leads me to the question. Why didn't Jesus say to her what he said, it didn't seem appropriate. It seems kind of rude. You're shacking up with this guy and your past is pretty checkered.
[00:10:28] Cause that's what he said to her. And then the third question I would ask you to wrestle with this. What would it be that Jesus would say about you? Th that would send you into that place that he sent her, which is into her like depth of like, oh my, how do you know this? Because that's where he took her.
[00:10:45] He took her into her past failures. What would Jesus say about you? If the scene were about you now, just hold all that for a little while we'll come back to it. And, and there's a reason that I want you to wrestle with that. What is your comfort level with reality? Cause it's, you know, he didn't make that stuff up about her.
[00:11:06] That was the real, her, what's your comfort level with Ralph Hall show? When we come to church, I Russia, how you doing, how you doing really? And last week I talked about the fact that so often when we come to church, we go into pretend mode and we, we, we go into this, you know, better than better, there were only better.
[00:11:24] There'd be two of me, you know, we say things like this, you know, I'm fine. I'm great. I'm, everything's awesome. And we love to tell people how great things. W w why is it that we do that when the tooth is that deeper down, we know that there's just issues. There's issues. We're in this series right now, because this is an incredibly difficult time to live through.
[00:11:48] And we should talk about some stuff that's tough, but, but the reason we don't could it be possible that reason we don't is because we're really afraid to let somebody in, because if you really knew what was going on, If you really knew, you know, the story you might pass knew my struggles knew my issues.
[00:12:08] You, you, to reject me and you wouldn't want to be my friend. And so I've got to pretend so that I don't drive you away. I don't think for a moment that we learned deception at church, I'm not at all believers. I don't believe that at all, but I would say this, I think we've honed the skill of deception at church for many of us.
[00:12:28] We've gotten really good at it. And church can become an incredibly dishonest place to exist because we don't really want anyone to know. And I would say this is absolutely tragic of all the places we should be real. It should be here. Now I started this series last week. I received a number of emails.
[00:12:44] One email I got was from the lady and she, uh, Man when you were talking last week about how we pretend to be somebody different. When we come to church and made me think of this song, and she told me of a song by a guy named Matthew West, and the title of the song is truth, be told. And, and as she sent me the email, she added the lyrics in her email.
[00:13:02] And so I was reading the lyrics of my office and I intrigued by the words of the song. I just thought I got to kinda hear the song. So I got on Spotify and I brought the song up and I sat in my office and just listened to the song over and over. And that's not me. Okay. I just listened to the song and I, there sat there and I thought this is so good.
[00:13:21] There's gotta be a way. And this is Tuesday. Okay. Okay. And, uh, I contacted, uh, Julianne Williams and her and her husband, Dennis. And just, is there any way, but between now and the weekend, you can figure out a way to do this song. And I really think it would be good for us to wrestle with, and they took the challenge and took the charge.
[00:13:44] And so I'm going to invite them right now. Come out and you know them, they're on our worship team. And here's what I want to ask you to do listen very carefully to the words. Okay. And we're going to put them on the screen so you can't miss them. Alright. Just wrestle with this and they do it so well. So here we go.
[00:14:32] Yeah. How you doing you just smile and tell them I have a better
[00:14:41] plan. Number two everybody's life is perfect except yours. So keep secrets in messes in your wound, safe at you behind closed door,
[00:14:56] it should be
[00:15:03] a sale.
[00:15:13] control, but it's not
[00:15:21] would be an honest as they only way to fix it. There's no failure. No, father's the sin you don't already know. So that, that shoot.
[00:15:38] There's a sad door. It's just come as you are. But I doubt it. Cues or feeling like that was true ever Sunday morning, pew would be crowded
[00:15:56] hospital, a safe place for the sick, the sinner in the scar, in the prodigals. I was just like me with beats the shoe. There's rarely it's wrong. Sam. Hey, I'm fine. But
[00:16:21] when it's out of control, but it's,
[00:16:29] I don't know why I, that two images. Being honest is the only way to fix it. There's no
[00:16:39] know that you
[00:16:51] Oh, got it. That's really, it's true then.
[00:17:05] I'm broken when it's out of the show. The say it's construe, but it's
[00:17:13] at so no. 4 billion us is the only way to fix it. There's no failure. There's no scene. You don't already know. Yeah. There's no value. There's a scene. You don't already know the truth.
[00:17:42] Thank you both very much for doing that. So truth be told the truth is seldom told, rarely told, you know, it's interesting, Jesus said in John 8 32, you will know the truth and the truth set you free. Why do we run from the truth? Why do we hide? Yeah. From what's real. Why do we pretend like it's better than it is?
[00:18:05] I want to suggest, I think there's tremendous freedom in knowing and believing and grasping that God loves you for who you are now. We'll get to that. So today we're going to talk about shame and guilt. Okay. Oh, Gloria subjects, shame and guilt are not the same thing. And we'll kind of differentiate them in just a moment in a bit, but for now, let me just make the point as we get going here.
[00:18:31] Our story never begins in shame. Now I'm not saying that somebody didn't do something shameful that began your story. That's not what I'm saying. I'm saying you were not born with a sense of shame. You weren't born feeling bad about being born. You didn't feel like there was an issue when you were born because there was no.
[00:18:48] Within you Seamus taught to us. It is some, some message we get from external extrinsic from ourself. It comes at us in some form. I don't know how you learn shame, but you learned it in Genesis chapter two. It's the story of Adam and Eve and the creation story Genesis one through three, really? But at the end of chapter two, there's a sentence that I think is so interesting.
[00:19:14] It's Genesis 2 25 and it says this Adam and his wife were both. And they felt no shame. It's really important that you understand that they were naked and they felt no shame. They were their truest selves. They were, as, you know, this as authentic as you can be, and they felt nothing wrong. But, uh, you know, any of us who have had kids, you, you know that at some point you start to realize how comfortable your little kids are being naked.
[00:19:44] It's funny even say in church, in it. But they're incredibly comfortable being naked. They're running around the house. They'll run around the neighborhood. They'll run around in front of your guests. They'll do any. And so you have to teach them civilized people don't run around naked. You cover up your little nudist, get something on, however, you know, whatever you say to your kids.
[00:20:01] But eventually you start to realize that we're supposed to cover with something. And, but Adam adamant Eve had nothing to hide nor do. Now I need to explain something that if you keep reading in chapter three, sin enters the story. Okay. And it was about disobeying what God says. So sin enters the story and when sin enters guilt enters, okay.
[00:20:23] Now if you, if you've sin and you've got guilt and you deal with it, it goes away. But if you don't then, so if you, if you don't confess it, you're going to conceal it. That's what you need to understand. You're going to, you're going to cover it up somehow. Like a hide. Like I didn't do that. Okay. Like I have nothing to do there at all with that.
[00:20:46] And when guilt, so sin, guilt, shame. And when all three of those together, that's like, that's when the party's really rocking and rolling in Genesis chapter three, after the sin entered, the story is this line. Okay. Verses eight to 10, then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord as he was walking in the garden in the cooler.
[00:21:07] And they hid from the Lord among the trees of the garden, but the Lord called to the man, where are you? He answered the man answered. I heard you in the garden. I was afraid because I was naked. So I hid who, who told you, you were naked? Well, sin told them that they were naked and instead of confessing their sentence and a dad really messed up here.
[00:21:33] Oh my. Really messed up could have confessed, but didn't conceal. So I'm going to hide now. Hiding is the most tempting thing we could ever do when we've given into temptation. Now I got to stop here because I feel like I have to, I have to put a parentheses here that I think is really, really important.
[00:21:52] And I feel like if I don't, we're going to miss something that we needed to cover. So just allow me to chase says, I want to make a point. Not all shame is. Not all shamans just as there is good cholesterol and there is bad cholesterol. There was good shame and there is bad shame and you might be going, what do you like?
[00:22:09] Good shame. Be good. All right. So I want to quote a psychologist guy named John Bradshaw. He wrote the book healing, the shame that binds you. And he said this in itself, shame is not bad. Shame is a normal human emotion. In fact, it is necessary to feel shameless. If one is to be truly. Shame is the emotion that gives us permission to be human shame tells us of our limits.
[00:22:33] Shame keeps us in our human boundaries, letting us know that we can and will make mistakes and that we need help. Our shame tells us we are not God healthy. Shame is the psychological foundation of humility. It is the source of spirituality. So, so let me be crystal clear. There all shame is bad. There is a healthy shame.
[00:22:56] All right. And this is important. Healthy shame is never going to hurt you. It's only going to help you. And yet I would say this to you. If you don't ever feel shame, something broke inside of you. Now stay with me on this and that there are things you shouldn't be ashamed of in your life. There are just things you should, but, but all of us know people, but the truth be known.
[00:23:18] They're not ashamed of anything. And I want to say that was not how you were designed. And in fact, I was thinking of this in Philippians two 19 speaks of a person whose glory, a group of people actually, but their glory is in their shame, their glory. They are proud of what they ought to be ashamed of.
[00:23:37] And my guess is again, you know, somebody they're just. And you just go, you should not be proud. Well, let's leave that sit there for just a bit, because that's not the kind of shame I want to talk about. I want to talk about the other, the insidious one, the harmful one that we're going to call toxic shame is something that my guess is we've all wrestled with.
[00:23:56] I don't think that any of us are exceptions to this toxic shame can eat us alive from the inside out like a. It takes all the joy out of our life. It takes the purpose out of our life. It takes the value out of our life. It's very real. Um, this is when, uh, shame. Isn't something you feel listen carefully.
[00:24:20] It's something you've become. It's a state of identity, a state of being it's that point in time when you've convinced yourself that you are flawed, you are defective. You are inferior and you are unworthy. Hm. When, when this happens, the pain causes us to, uh, cover up and hide. It's just fearful. It makes us defensive, distant.
[00:24:50] It's exhausting to live out of such a negative center of our being. It's like holding a beach ball under water. It just takes all of our energy because we don't want it to come out and be. Why don't we just let it be seen because we're afraid. We're afraid of being exposed. We're afraid of being seen naked for who we really are bar.
[00:25:08] And, uh, and I need you to listen carefully when this sort of thing becomes normal in your life. And this is just a matter of degrees. It's just steps toward it when it takes over. And this is the hardest part is you actually come to loath yourself. Come to hate yourself. You come to resent yourself. You, you reproach your very existence.
[00:25:36] You really do believe that you don't belong. And that you're less than by the way. Uh, if you've arrived there, don't expect to have any kind of relationship that will fulfill you because nobody can fill in that. And truth. Be known a lot of broken relationships come out of that deep place of hurt. So I hope by this point in time, you're catching on that shame is a pretty powerful emotion.
[00:26:00] And some have said the most powerful of all, but understanding that there's two kinds of shame, a good shame and a bad shame, I would differentiate them by saying this good shame can shape your psyche. That's him can destroy your psyche. Good shame can motivate you to action. Bad shame can manipulate. To action.
[00:26:19] Good shame can lead you to a better way of living bad shame can decimate your sense of living, but make no mistake. Shame in your life will get your attention. You, you will notice it will take you somewhere. It will have an effect on you. Oh, so why, why is this such a relevant subject? Do you know? You weren't born feeling shameful, but did you know that listen very carefully.
[00:26:47] If I'm going to get misunderstood, this message is going to happen right now. Okay. Listen carefully. You know who taught you to be full of shame? Probably. I don't know your story. Probably your parents now, hang on. I'm not knocking on your parents. You know how they learned it from their parents. You see shame.
[00:27:10] Is generally our parents figure out that they listened carefully manipulate and control, okay. That they can get us to do certain things that can motivate us by making us feel bad about certain things. Now, my parents needed that to me and I did it too. Amen. I'm not trying to make you feel bad. I'm just saying let's just call it out.
[00:27:35] Is what's behind this sign at a little league ballpark. I love this side reminders from your child. Number one, I'm a kid. Number two. It's just the game. Number three of my coaches of volunteer. Number four of the officials are humans. Number five, no college scholarships will be handed out today. Why is that even funny?
[00:27:56] I got to do is be a parent. And you understand why that's funny. So what was it that your parents said to you that has stuck with you all your life? I have no idea. There's a long list. I don't have time to give a long list. I'll I'll fire off a couple of things that you might've heard, you might not have heard.
[00:28:13] My guess is you've heard some of these and you were sent to your room to go think about one of these or two. Now I've got to say this as a caveat before I make my little short. I'm not saying this to shame any of you as parents. Okay. So please, if, if this makes you feel bad, I'm sorry. Okay. I learned it from my parents.
[00:28:32] You learned it from your parents. Okay. And we'll just like, let's just call that out. So don't, don't let this shame you, that's not the point. Number two. Don't pick up any tips. Okay. Like, oh man. Number four. I'm used that on my son. No, that's not the point. But these are the kinds of things that no doubt parents say to their kids.
[00:28:51] And it taps into this whole issue of shame. I cannot believe that you would do that. Can you help me to understand what were you thinking when you did that? You just, you just, you just wait until you're father gets home. You just wait. Okay. We didn't raise you to fill in the blank. Your, your brother never did that.
[00:29:20] Your sister would never would this family doesn't do Jeff, do you have any idea how much this is going to cost me? Got any idea? I just need you to know. I will not be able to show my face in public. Now I just need you to understand that. Just need you to know. I don't think you're ever going to amount to anything ever.
[00:29:56] And, and of course they'll stand by shame on you. Shame on. It's just pretty succinct. So again, that's a short list. There's a bunch of them and many more, much more could be said. I would get the point. All right. But here's what I need you to understand about the point. The point is originally, those were the things you heard.
[00:30:18] In fact, let me say it this way. Once you've heard these things long enough, you don't need anyone else to say them to you. You begin to say them to yourself. Hmm. You're never going to amount to anything. What were you thinking? We don't do that in this family. Now. Now listen, we can forever debate the nuances between what is guilt and what is shame.
[00:30:43] But I want to, just for the sake, differentiate them a little bit by saying just a couple of things that I think will be helpful. Okay. So let me define guilt as this guilt is guilt says I did something bad. I did something. It's when internally you, you just know you knowledge that you screwed something up, you, you know, what you did was wrong and guilt is the, uh, it's the gatekeeper conscience, as it were.
[00:31:15] It's the guardian of your conscience. It helps you to realize you violated something that, that you valued and. Tragically today in our culture, fewer and fewer of us are feeling guilt about much of anything because we're living among a people who want to say anything goes and nothing's ever wrong. And so we feel like guilt should never be felt anymore.
[00:31:41] But, but we know when we violate our own standard, I think about this passage in first Timothy four, where Paul said, he said to Timothy, they said, be aware of people whose consciousness have been. As with a hot iron listen carefully. If this were a hot iron, how do you sear your conscience? Okay. It's kind of a weird thing because you think of your conscience is this is internal, but let me just say, let's just imagine this right here was my comment.
[00:32:11] All right. So the right side of my face, so I would take this and I would put this on my face. This is a hot iron. I put it on my face. Here's what I need you to understand. The first time I put it on my face, it's going to be incredibly painful and I'm going to scream really loudly. And when I pull that thing off, it's going to be, it was going to be a mark and it's going to be a mess.
[00:32:29] And just, it's not going away. It's going to be there, but leave it alone and it will heal. You'll see the iron it'll be the leave a mark. I healed it. And then I did it again. Here's what I can tell you about the second time it's going to hurt really badly, but it will not hurt as much as it did the first time, because part of me died the first time I did that.
[00:32:54] And the second time I do it, more of me is going to die. It's called scar tissue and the third time and the fourth time and the 10th time and the hundredth. And he said, what happens is, is you can do stuff so many times, it just deadened your conscience and it's not good. It's not good. Guilt is like the check engine light in your car.
[00:33:18] When the check engine light goes on, it doesn't mean it's broken. Oh, my light got broken. It came on. It's indicating something deeper within is broken and that's what guilt does. And then you got to do something. It can be. But you got to do something now that's not shame. Okay. So guilt says I did something bad.
[00:33:40] Shame says I am something bad. Wow. This is where destruction inner story. See shame, attacks your sense of self-esteem because it's not. Look, I made a mistake. It is, I am a mistake. It's not about an errant app. It's about an errant. It's deep, deep, deeply internalized it's toxic shame. And by the way, here's just an observation I made.
[00:34:15] We're far more. We're not likely to confess our guilt, but we're far more prone to confess our guilt than we are to admit our shame. Please make a mental note of that. Gil is hard to confess. It's hard to tell you what I feel guilty about, but Hey, what I feel shameful about. I'm fine. I'm good. But I'm not broken.
[00:34:37] Shame starts to transform us, convinces us that we are less than we're less than we're not enough. We're a disappointment. We're not worthy of love. We're not worthy of belonging. Bernay brown says it this way. Shame is a warm feeling that washes over us makes us feel small, flawed, and never good enough.
[00:34:59] And my guess is you go, I felt. And by the way, can I just point out all of our really bad behavior comes from this pit, this bottomless pit? I mean, think about it. Our, uh, our judgment of others comes out of that pit, our rage and our anger comes out of that. Our addictions to cope come out of that pit.
[00:35:23] What about, how do we cope? Well, here's what most of us. Okay. So this is the real us that we know. This is the real me with all my junk and this real me. It's the one I know to be true. All my failures reside there, all my disappointments reside there, all my degrading thoughts, all the negative comments I've ever heard, all the conclusions that have reached about myself.
[00:35:49] They all reside here in the negative self, but I don't want to live there. And so this and carefully, we set that aside and then we come over here and we create a persona. Please listen carefully. We create a persona. This is my sculpted self. This is the me. I want to, to see this is the me. I want you to know, listen carefully.
[00:36:13] This is my Instagram I'm page. This is my Facebook page. Carefully crafted to get you off the trail of what's really going on inside of me. I want you to look and I want you to see, well, what does any of this have to do with mental health? Oh, come on you, you get this right. If this is who I really am, and this is who I'm projecting myself to be, there is a huge gap.
[00:36:37] And I say all the sicknesses in this gap, all the sicknesses in the.
[00:36:45] This there I don't exist in here. This is not, none of this is for real. This is for real, all of this however wide the cows is, uh, created Jesus. Doesn't meet me there. It was. Why don't we do this? Because I believe if you knew the real me, you would reject me, you would abandon me. You would forsake me.
[00:37:08] You'd want nothing to do with me. So I can't let you. Let's go back to the woman at the well, and you got to wrap this up, so you go back to the woman at the well, and I asked you some questions. Why would Jesus do that to her? Why would he do that to her? Well, again, without having a lot of time, let me just suggest to this.
[00:37:29] Did you hear how she communicated with him? Oh, um, you're here. You understand where you are, sir? My, my ancestor, Jacob. Now, when you, Jacob, that's the, the father, I mean the 12 tribes, Jacob, I mean way back in our family and our ancestry. And she's just, she's just wrapped into this hyper religious thing with Jesus.
[00:37:57] He, he, she, she has not a clue who this guy is and she says our ancestors mete this well, and all of a sudden it's super spiritual. And she goes on and she's like, if you keep reading, you'll get more of it. And he can, I just think of it. This, could he just say, that's your persona? That's not who you are.
[00:38:20] And I know it's not who you are. So let me just cut to the chase. Let me go straight to the heart of who you are. Go get your husband. I don't have one. I know you don't because you're, you're shacking up with a guy and you're pretending, like, I don't know that. And she's going, how do you know that? And you're right to say, you don't have a husband because you've had five.
[00:38:38] Do you understand what he's doing? He's not doing this to hurt her. He's doing this to meet her where she really is, is reality. Don't bring it. Your persona to me. Jesus is saying, I don't want to know your persona. I want to know you. And he just took her there. And so there's nothing she could do. Now. You got to understand, she's not proud of the fact of.
[00:39:00] She's showing up at the well at noon because she has no friends to come to the well, they would come in the morning and then the evening with their friends, she has no friends. You have five husbands shame on you. How difficult must you be to live? That's not what he's doing. What he's no woman had control of how many guys would reject her.
[00:39:25] This was her point of deepest pain. I've been rejected by five different guys, all of whom didn't want her. You don't have any kids to come do this for you.
[00:39:41] going, can we just get real? Can we just truth be told and he. Just lays this out there. And I think this is so incredible. Can I just give you the big idea, please hear me. The only you, the only you that God loves nos and blesses is the real you, that's it. The only you God wants anything to do with is not anything.
[00:40:12] This side of reality, none of that matters. It's the real you.
[00:40:20] Jeff. If you keep reading, we just have to, if you keep reading, she goes out and she tells everybody, you got to come to the well, there's a guy that I met at the, well, he told me everything I'd ever done wrong. You gotta come hear him.
[00:40:38] Are you thinking about what was the thing I asked you? I asked you what would be the most humiliating thing he could say about you. Come here, this guy, he's got it. Like on film. I mean, it's incredible. It's incredibly accurate. Why would she do that? Because he shamed her mercilessly. No, he loved her carefully.
[00:41:01] Precisely go into the heart. Yeah. I'm just thinking of this passage in Romans two, four, it says, do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness for Berenson patients? Not realizing that God's kindness is intended to lead you to repentance, you know, as she was telling me. Unknown unknown. And he, and I got nothing to hide here, man.
[00:41:22] I'm I'm naked and it's just all good. Don't get weird on me right now. Okay. She's like, I don't have to pretend anymore. I don't have to. He met me in the heart to the toxic shame. Listen carefully. I'm going to be finished. We're in a moment. Toxic. Convinces you, your very existence is pulsive to God, shame on you for being you you're, you're not enough.
[00:41:53] You're not good enough and convince you that convinces you. He can't stand you, you discuss, and he's going to vomit you out of his mouth. And it doesn't take a whole lot of that kind of stuff to start to believe that he really is against you and not for you. Could it be possible? Could it just be positive?
[00:42:11] We are both known and loved by God. Not just known by God. That'd be horrible, but we were loved by God. Yeah. But if he only knew that's horrible known and loved by God, could it be possible? I don't know who came up with this thing. I just need you to understand that you got some really good parts and you got some really bad parts and none of it's secret to God and his love of you was not conditional on you.
[00:42:41] Get more good stuff than bad stuff. He just loves you because you're you, you're his created one. You're precious. You're his workmanship. I, I don't know who said this, but somebody came up with this. It's not the. And I thought a lot about this. I think there's more truth to this than anything. There is nothing you can do that would cause God to love you more than he loves you right now.
[00:43:05] He's not holding back. He's not in reserve. He's not on, you're not on probation. There's also nothing you could do that would to love you less. You can earn more of his love because he's given it to you freely, but he's not going to take it away from you because you screwed something up. It's hard for us to get a brain around.
[00:43:25] See Jesus had, we're supposed to love others as we love ourself. What does that mean? We're supposed to treat people with as much reproach as we treat ourselves with as much repulsion as we repulse ourselves with as much hatred, self hatred as I have for myself. I'm supposed to hate now he, you know, he's not saying that what he's saying is, is when you're healthy, you understand I'm with you.
[00:43:48] And I know, and I love you. For who you are, the only you, God loves, knows, and bless us is the real you, you should become comfortable with that. You do something different here. I'm going to stop talking and we're going to go silent for a minute. Wherever you are is going to feel like an eternity. It's one minute.
[00:44:09] Okay. One minute. I want to remind you of something is shame comes when guilt wasn't dealt with shame. Shame comes when. You decided to conceal rather than confess first John one nine. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and righteous to forgive us and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness when I'm clean.
[00:44:29] I'm why do I have to be concerned? So I'm going to just say, can we just have a moment of silence, literally a minute of silence where maybe there's just something you go, I should really get this one off my chest. I've been hiding from this for so long. It's been a secret. I never as sick as the secrets you keep.
[00:44:50] I got, I got to just look at the, I know, you know, I just need to, I need to say this, so spend a minute, and then I'm going to lead us into a time of communion in which I want to make a one more point before we're done. Let's pray. Well, let's be quiet before God.
[00:46:04] We're going to come now to a time of communion and really we're just extending that minute. So just stay with me, stay in that same spirit. Jesus said to do this as often as you gather and do this in remembrance of him. So every week we set aside time in our service to commit. Jesus to commune. Well, what happens when we do this?
[00:46:25] Okay, well, we're going to take bread that represents his body in a cup that represents a shed blood, but really what's happening is, is we're going back to the cross. We're going back 2000 years. We're going back to remember the fact that 2000 years ago, something happened on a hill, literally outside of Jerusalem.
[00:46:44] That changed all the course of our lives. It's fascinating to me. Scripture says that Jesus endured the shame of the cross. You got to understand what was being said. There is the cross a crucifixion, the form of execution. We know as crucifixion was devised by the Romans to be the absolute worst way a person could die.
[00:47:08] That's through the advancement of their technology at the time. So how can we prolong it? How could we make this torture us? Humiliate somebody, how can we a base? Somebody? How could we set it up so that it would be so gruesome that nobody's seeing it would ever want it to happen, but to them, that's what they devised.
[00:47:25] It came with crucifixion and to be crucified, it was literally the be pointed out. And so mommy, what did he do, daddy? What did he do? I don't know, but you don't ever want to, why would he die for us on that cross? You ready for this? Because my son. My shame
[00:47:48] needed to be crucified, needed to be paid for. Yeah. And again, how does, I don't know, God just said bad luck. I'll do this one for you. You just have to put your faith in me. So when we take communion, we're going, God, I know I don't get it. I don't understand. But I, what I understand is that for me, you died.
[00:48:12] And I die with you in this moment.
[00:48:19] And God goes, you're clean. It's covered in all the right ways. Not hidden. It's paid for cover. Your dad is paid. So I want to just lead us to a time of community. I want to read to you two passages, Romans eight, one through three says this, listen, listen carefully to these words, therefore. There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ.
[00:48:45] Jesus, no condemnation because, uh, through Christ Jesus, the law of the spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death for what the law was powerless to do. And that it was weakened by the sinful nature. God did by sending his own son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering big picture, man.
[00:49:11] God goes. I know you, I know the real you, I know what you've done and I will cover it for you, which leads me to the next passage in Romans. I want to read two chapters later. Anyone who believes in him will never be put to
[00:49:40] I just have to ask, do you believe in him? I do. It's not because I'm good. It's not because I don't have needs. It's not because my story's perfect. No, it's exactly the opposite. I believe in him because he meets me in the deepest places on my soul and he goes, I love you anyway. I love you. Anyway. I know, I know.
[00:50:05] You're still valuable to me. What do I have to be ashamed of? What do you have to be ashamed of? That's free as we continue in our worship right now, we just do so just grateful. We're going to break bread and we're going to say, thank you. We're going to go back 2000 years to what you did, and on a lonely hillside outside of Jerusalem, you died for us.
[00:50:29] And when there's no worthiness about this, we didn't deserve it. And we get. It's not about our goodness. It's about your goodness and God. Uh, you love to us in a way that we will only spend the rest of our life, trying to emulate and get as close to that as we can to love you back and to love others. But it's because you loved us first.
[00:50:51] Not because we were good, but because you were so in this moment, in our real self, we break bread with you now with gratitude in Jesus' name. Amen.