Family Matters - Part 5

How Do I Resolve Conflict?

The reason for conflict:

What is the cause of your conflicts and quarrels with each other? Doesn’t the battle begin inside of you as you fight to have your own way and fulfill your own desires?  You jealously want what others have so you begin to see yourself as better than others. You scheme with envy and harm.   James 4:1-2a TPT

How to resolve conflict...

    *ask for help

You don’t have what you want because you don’t ask God for it.  James 4:2b NLT

    *change your focus

And if you ask, you won’t receive it for you’re asking with corrupt motives,seeking only to fulfill your own selfish desires.  James 4:3 TPT

You can't change what's going on around you until you change what's going on inside you.

    *become a Jesus follower

But he continues to pour out more and more grace upon us. For it says, God resists you when you are proud but continually pours out grace when you are humble.” So then, surrender to God. Move your heart closer and closer to God, and he will come even closer to you. But make sure you cleanse your life, you sinners, and keep your heart pure and stop doubting. Feel the pain of your sin, be sorrowful and weep! Let your joking around be turned into mourning and your joy into deep humiliation.  Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor.  James 4:6-10 TPT

    *establish ground rules

Don’t speak evil against each other, dear brothers and sisters. If you criticize and judge each other, then you are criticizing and judging God’s law.  James 4:11 NLT

And never let ugly or hateful words come from your mouth, but instead let your words become beautiful gifts that encourage others; do this by speaking words of grace to help them. Lay aside bitter words, temper tantrums, revenge, profanity, and insults.  But instead be kind and affectionate toward one another. Has God graciously forgiven you? Then graciously forgive one another in the depths of Christ’s love.   Ephesians 4:29,31-32 TPT

        7 Rules of Engagement:
        #1 Be positive
        #2 Be specific
        #3 Be current
        #4 Be attentive
        #5 Be courteous
        #6 Be considerate
        #7 Be honest

    *go and make peace

You can't change what's going on around you until you change what's going on inside you.


Family Matters - Part 4

What If I Married the Wrong Person?

Why you may be thinking you married the wrong person:

* you discover a hidden negative
* you over-estimated your ability to cope

What you thought was a strength starts looking like a weakness

Flawed thinking that will destroy your marriage:
    *either/or thinking
    *over generalization
    *dismissing the positive
    *mind reading
    *negative expectations
    *emotional reasoning

Like is an emotion - love is a decision

And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.  Romans 12:1-2 NLT

How to change your marriage by changing your mind:

Acknowledge relationship realities

Eliminate negative thinking

Get the facts

Act on the truth

Like is an emotion - love is a decision

Family Matters - Part 3

Is There Life After Marriage?

Form a Joint Partnership

In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life.  1 Peter 3:7 NLT

* everything must be in common

* every decision must be made on the principle of agreement

When you can't agree:
-you need more information
-you need more time to process
-when in doubt, don't

*God can change your spouse's mind (heart)

Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper who is just right for him.”  Genesis 2:18 NLT

Don't let your marriage slip... Make it an equal partnership!

Cultivate a Grateful heart

He gave names to all the livestock, all the birds of the sky, and all the wild animals. But still there was no helper just right for him. So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep. While the man slept, the Lord God took out one of the man’s ribs and closed up the opening.  Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib, and he brought her to the man. “At last!” the man exclaimed. “This one is bone from my bone, and flesh from my flesh! She will be called ‘woman,’ because she was taken from ‘man.’”  Genesis 2:20-23 NLT

Make a Firm Commitment

This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.  Genesis 2:24 NLT

HOMEWORK: This week...
-verbalize your commitment to each other
-be in agreement about every decision
-list your differences, then thank God for completion

Don't let your marriage slip... Make it an equal partnership!


Family Matters - Part 2

Who Should I Marry?

Don't leave it to fate when choosing a mate.

How do I know if this is the right one?

-Character compatibility

    What is the level of honesty?

    What is the level of responsibility?

-Communication compatibility

-Physical compatibility

When Jacob saw Rachel...he went over and...kissed Rachel and began to weep aloud.  Genesis 29:10 NIV

-Spiritual compatibility

You are not the same as those who do not believe. So do not join yourselves to them. Good and bad do not belong together. Light and darkness cannot share together. How can Christ and the devil, have any agreement? What can a believer have together with a nonbeliever? The temple of God cannot have any agreement with idols, and we are the temple of the living God.  2 Corinthians 6:14-16 NCV

    *to ensure a common treasure

    *to ensure a common future

    *to ensure a common power

    *to ensure common values

-Give the relationship enough time

    *time for true attraction

Nine tests for love:

 - Share test
 - Strength test
 - Respect test
 - Habit test
 - Time test
 - Separation test
 - Giving test
 - Growth test
 - Patient test

    *time for affirmation

Don't leave it to fate when choosing a mate.

Family Matters - Part 1

Moms Make A Difference

Moms, do you ever feel like a failure?

And though he loved Hannah, he would give her only one choice portion because the Lord had given her no children.  1 Samuel 1:5 NLT

So Peninnah would taunt Hannah and make fun of her because the Lord had kept her from having children.  Year after year it was the same—Peninnah would taunt Hannah as they went to the Tabernacle. Each time, Hannah would be reduced to tears and would not even eat.  1 Samuel 1:6-7 NLT

    *Resist comparing yourself to others

“Why are you crying, Hannah?” Elkanah would ask. “Why aren’t you eating? Why be downhearted just because you have no children? You have me—isn’t that better than having ten sons?” 1 Samuel 1:8 NLT

    *Don't give up on your dreams

Once after a sacrificial meal at Shiloh, Hannah got up and went to pray.  Hannah was in deep anguish, crying bitterly as she prayed to the Lord. And she made this vow: “O Lord of Heaven’s Armies, if you will look upon my sorrow and answer my prayer and give me a son, then I will give him back to you. He will be yours for his entire lifetime, and as a sign that he has been dedicated to the Lord, his hair will never be cut.”  1 Samuel 1:9-11 NLT

    *Ask for help

“In that case,” Eli said, “go in peace! May the God of Israel grant the request you have asked of him.” “Oh, thank you, sir!” she exclaimed. Then she went back and began to eat again, and she was no longer sad. 1 Samuel 1:17-18 NLT

    *Accept the encouragement of others

When the child was weaned, Hannah took him to the Tabernacle in Shiloh. After sacrificing the bull, they brought the boy to Eli. “Sir, do you remember me?” Hannah asked. “I am the very woman who stood here several years ago praying to the Lord. I asked the Lord to give me this boy, and he has granted my request. Now I am giving him to the Lord, and he will belong to the Lord his whole life.” And they worshiped the Lord there.  1 Samuel 1:24-28 NLT

    *Prepare your children for the future
    *Continue to provide what they need
    *Remember your goals

Moms, you make a difference.

Dads, be supportive.

Kids, say thank you.

I Love My Church


Vision - to be the church that the unchurched love to experience.

Mission - following Jesus, changing together.

What should determine the reputation of the church?

So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”  John 13:34-35 NLT

Why does the church exist?

To make a difference by relentlessly loving those who are outside.

Later, as Jesus left the town, he saw a tax collector named Levi sitting at his tax collector’s booth. “Follow me and be my disciple,” Jesus said to him. So Levi got up, left everything, and followed him. Later, Levi held a banquet in his home with Jesus as the guest of honor. Many of Levi’s fellow tax collectors and other guests also ate with them. But the Pharisees and their teachers of religious law complained bitterly to Jesus’ disciples, “Why do you eat and drink with such scum?” Jesus answered them, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor—sick people do. I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners and need to repent.”  Luke 5:27-32 NLT

Our church should be a hospital for sinners.

What we receive from the church is in direct proportion to what we are willing to give to the church.

There is no love without sacrifice.

What does it look like to intentionally love the church?
    *love by connecting
    *love by serving - saved people serve people
    *love by giving
    *love by sharing

Church:  It's not about you.

It's about those who are still lost & broken without Jesus.