Pastor, author, and Bible teacher, Alan Wright. I was overwhelmed with a feeling of cleansing and healing like I've never experienced. It was as if my father himself had made things right. A heavy weight's been lifted from my heart, and the chains of hurt were shattered.
My bruised petals are healed, and my joy could fill a rose garden. That's Pastor Alan Wright. Welcome to another message of good news that will help you see yourself in a whole new light. I'm Daniel Britt, excited for you to hear the teaching today in the series, Free Yourself, Be Yourself. If you're not able to stay with us throughout the entire program, I want to make sure you know how to get our special resource right now. It could be yours for your donation this month to Alan Wright Ministries. As you listen to today's message, go deeper as we send you today's special offer. Contact us at PastorAlan.org or call 877-544-4860.
That's 877-544-4860. More on that later in the program. But now, let's get started with today's teaching. Here is Alan Wright. Welcome to our third session of our Free Yourself, Be Yourself series.
It's so good to be with you. We are, we have been learning about what shame is. We have been learning about how shame is a lie that says that we don't measure up and that we have to fix it.
We've got to figure out what the problem is. In order to make ourselves acceptable, we have to measure up. I made the statement that the idea that we don't measure up and yet we have to measure up and that gap between what we ought to be and what we see ourselves as being, that that gap is actually the greatest source of anxiety in the universe because it's right there that our insides are always churning, that we're always having to figure out what do I need to do to measure up. And what we've been learning is how the glorious gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ says something entirely different. Whereas the whole world might be saying shame on you, you ought to be ashamed of yourself, that I'd be ashamed of myself if I were you, that kind of language we've heard all life, that in the gospel that there is a completely different announcement, shame off you, that Jesus Christ came to take not only your sin but to take away our shame. That we have an announcement in the gospel that tells us precisely the opposite of the message of the world.
Instead of telling us that you don't measure up and it's up to you to measure up in order to be accepted, what the gospel tells us is that though we were born in sin and all have fallen short of the glory of God, that Christ came and He came and lived a perfect and sinless life so that anyone who would believe in Him would know that they are completely, totally, forever accepted. Now one of the stumbling blocks in our lives, one of the things the enemy uses to continually drag us downward, backward, are the wounds of our hearts. And those wounds cause many different manifestations in our lives. So when people who have not loved us or have hurt us or mistreated us in any way, when this has happened, and we've all experienced this to some degree, what happens is that our hearts make responses to those wounds.
And we're going to be learning in coming sessions some more specifically about those kinds of responses. But in a real sense what happens with shame is that it's not so much the shame or the wound that begins to debilitate our soul and hold us back, but it is instead our responses to those wounds. So for example, if someone says, I was hurt when I was a child, as a little girl, and I was hurt emotionally, and that child says, so therefore I'm not going to let anybody hurt me again. Well what that is, is that's an ungodly response to try to protect the soul, to try to protect oneself from ever being hurt again. And so our responses that we make to wounds determine how we're going to end up living our life. And the scripture makes it very, very clear that one of the most important things we could ever learn to do is to forgive. And it's a supernatural thing really to forgive. And we are in this session we are going to really ultimately be talking about forgiveness. But we're going to have a unique opportunity and so I have less teaching for us in this segment and more really what is ministry. And it is an invitation for all of us and it is an invitation for everyone who is participating by video to actually receive words of confession. And for this purpose that in some new way through the hearing of this and through the decisions of your own heart that you'll be able to let go of some of the wounds that may still have some binding influence in your life.
This all happened years and years ago. We had a denominational meeting here at our Reynolda church where we were hosting this meeting from people all over the region. And in an effort to be hospitable we had decided to decorate with flowers, lots of flowers. And some of our ladies had some beautiful flowers all over. Well it so happened that that following weekend was Valentine's weekend after we had just hosted this denominational meeting and we had all these flowers around and it just made me think, I was thinking about these beautiful flowers and I had been thinking so much about and preaching some about the importance of honor. And I just had this idea. I said what would happen if without telling anybody, telling any of the ladies that we made a plan that we would on that Sunday morning, which happened to be Valentine's Day, that on that Sunday morning I would preach a message about honoring women and then we just give a rose, a single red rose to every woman that comes to church that day.
And I just thought you know what good idea, how could you lose with that? And so that was the plan I made. And as was always my custom, on Friday morning I began praying and preparing for a message about honoring women. And I went back and I focused on Adam and Eve and I was, I prepared some thoughts to share about how sad it was that Eve, though she was the one to take the first bite of the forbidden fruit, that the text says clearly and Adam was there with her. And I was thinking back about Larry Crabb's idea, the silence of Adam and how he was instead of defending her in her hour of need, how it was that he just capitulated to the enemy and stood by and let his wife be overtaken by the temptation.
And then how shortly after sin had entered the world that Adam said, well, the woman you gave me, she gave the fruit to me and he began to shift the blame. And I was just there in my study and I began to think about all of this. I began to think about all the ways that women have been dishonored, women in our own culture.
Not to mention the cultures around the world where women are just systematically dishonored throughout history where women have been not treated well, not treated equally, not honored. And I began to think about my own mother. I began to think about my mom, that wonderful, wonderful, beautiful lady who when I was in the fourth grade had to sit in the room when my dad announced that he was going to leave home. And I remember watching my mom cry that day. And that beautiful woman and how she had come to a place where she just got down on her knees one night in her room alone and she said, Lord, I think I'm sinking down. She said, if you're really there, if you really exist, then I'm going to need for you to do something because I'm sinking.
And if you don't do something, then I'll probably take these three boys down with me. And how it was that a lovely lady a couple weeks later came by our house and said to my mom that she had been awakened in the middle of the night. And of course they figured it to be that very same night. And how she had come over and said, you're on my heart.
Is there anything you need? My mother told her that our family had broken and that lady introduced my mom to Christ and my mother who introduced us to Christ. And I thought about my mother that Friday morning as I was thinking about honoring women. And I thought about my wife.
I thought about my lovely and beautiful wife and who I love with all my heart. And yet how often I get distracted by ministry, by other things, by other needs, and every little insensitivity, everything critical that I'd ever said. All of this, it just began to, it just came to me like it began to be, it began to be a thought process.
But maybe you've experienced this before where it moved beyond just my thoughts. And soon I realized that in my little study at home the Holy Spirit had come in a very manifest way. And I just began to fall under the conviction of the Holy Spirit and I began to weep. And I began to weep and I wept and I wept there. And I realized pretty soon that I was not weeping for just my own sin. I was weeping for the sin of men. I was weeping for all the dishonor that women had been shown. And I started realizing that what the Lord was going to have me to do was something quite unusual. Something that I never had done, never thought that I would do. But it became quite clear to me that I was being instructed that on that Sunday morning that we would have an opportunity not only for men to honor women but to repent.
And that we wouldn't just give a rose to each woman that we would have something else that would happen. And I began to have a knowing that there was a powerful thing that the Lord was going to do. And so what I did was I wrote out not so much a sermon as I wrote out a confession.
That's Alan Wright. And we'll have more teaching in a moment from today's important series. Unlock the power of blessing your life. Discover God's grace-filled vision for your life by signing up for Alan Wright's free daily blessing. If you want to fill your heart with grace and encouragement, get Alan Wright's daily blessing.
It's free and just a click away at PastorAlan.org. Can you imagine what it would be like to be accepted perfectly? Envision it. Being free to be yourself with no fear of rejection. If you mess up, people don't roll their eyes, make fun of you, or love you less.
Imagine no more of that anxious feeling that you get deep down in your gut that makes you feel like the pressure is always on so you can never really relax. What you're imagining and longing for is a life with no shame. In Paradise, before sin came into the world, the Bible tells us only one thing about Adam and Eve's relationship.
They were naked and felt no shame. Ever since the fall, the human heart has been riddled with shame. It's a lie that says, until you measure up, you can't be truly acceptable. Shame causes some to say, I'll try to be perfect in order to be accepted, and others to decide, since I'll never measure up, I might as well rebel.
Either way, the heart is poisoned by shame, and there is only one antidote. The grace of God in Jesus Christ. In his highly acclaimed book, Free Yourself, Be Yourself, Pastor Alan Wright not only exposes the lies of shame, he leads you into a revolution of God's love that heals your soul. Discover freedom, joy, and destiny as you shed performance-based living and let God take the shame off you for good. It's a life-changing, full-length book from Alan Wright.
Free yourself, be yourself. The Gospel is shared when you give to Alan Wright Ministries. This broadcast is only possible because of listener financial support. When you give today, we will send you today's special offer. We are happy to send this to you as our thanks from Alan Wright Ministries. Call us at 877-544-4860. That's 877-544-4860. Or come to our website, PastorAlan.org.
Today's teaching now continues. Here once again is Alan Wright. You know, it's a biblical thing to confess on behalf of others. Nehemiah did this, you know, when his heart got broken over the disrepair of the walls of Jerusalem, part of what he prayed, he said, I pray before you day and night for the people of Israel, your servants, confessing the sins of the people of Israel which we have sinned against you. You see what Nehemiah is doing here is he's not just confessing his own sin before the Lord, but the people of God understood that really sin is a corporate thing. We think in the western mentality, we tend to think so individualistically, my relationship with God, my sin, my walk with God, all of that, but from the perspective of God, he sees things sin generationally, he sees sin, and so there's a biblical, it's biblical to confess on behalf of others. It is not to say that you are actually repenting on behalf of others.
Repenting means to change your way of thinking, to turn your direction, and you can't repent for someone else, but we can confess, we can say, I'm sorry, let me stand in the position, let me be a proxy, let me be one to confess on behalf of others, and this is what Nehemiah did, and I began to realize that this is what I was going to be doing on Sunday morning, and so I wept and I wept and I wrote out this confessional statement. I came to church on that Sunday morning, and I had gone all by myself, and I had not wanted to tell any of the women because I didn't want word to leak that we were going to give a rose to all the women, and so I went over myself to the store and got all these hundreds and hundreds of roses, and I had preordered them, and when I was checking out with these hundreds and hundreds of roses, I wish you could have seen the lady's face that I was, she was like, you must be a special lady, or something like that, you know, and I told her, I said, I will let you in on a secret, I said, it's actually, it's for my church, and I said, it's Valentine's, and every woman's going to get a rose, and she said, what church is that? And so maybe that's what we ought to do every Sunday, we get the ladies to come. I bought all the roses, I didn't tell a single woman, and then I got some men, we got that green wax paper stuff, you know, to go around it, and we got men in the back room early that morning, and I got them back there, we were bumbling around, wrapping those things, and later the women all told me they wouldn't have cared if it had been wadded up in tissue, it was just the whole idea of the thing, and so we had hundreds of roses, each in wax paper, that was going to be available to be handed out, but first, what I did, was I gave a little bit of my message about Adam, and how he had dishonored Eve, and how ever since, men have been prone to dishonor women, and I had a lot of emotion, just like I'd had on that Friday morning, I could barely speak, I just was overcome with this great sorrow, and I knew that it wasn't just sheer emotion, it was the Holy Spirit, and I began to read the confession, these are the words I read, I have glimpsed the pain of the dishonored and shamed women in our world, and I believe God has sent me to you today to say I'm sorry for not honoring you, I'm sorry for the way that men have abandoned women, to every little girl whose daddy was too busy at work to notice her play school art, for every dance recital that we missed because of needing to work late one more night, for every preachers daughter whose father was out saving the world, but didn't notice he was losing his own girl, I'm truly sorry, I began to read the confession, it was a long confession, I was choking back the emotion, and it was so real, well at the end of reading that confession, what happened was we invited men to come up, I went and I literally got on my face for the Lord and just invited other men to come and say this would be a good time to just tell the Lord that you're sorry for any of the ways that you've dishonored women, and on behalf of all men, and I said if there's another man that wants to come and join me for a few moments you can, and I think every man in the church came forward, and so you could just imagine this scene of just a sea of men, not enough room for all to get on their knees, and have it in our hearts, and women you need to understand this, men, so many men want to have it in their heart to honor women, they may not have ever seen it, they may not know how, they may not know what it feels like, but it's in there, and I saw it in all those men, all those men that came forward, and we just had some moments of just time of just humbling our hearts before the Lord, and it was sweet, sweet, sweet, and then it happened that we brought out on carts all these roses, and I said now men just take a rose, find any lady if it's your wife go to her first, if it's your daughter go to her with a rose, and at least take a rose each of you to somebody, and the men began taking the rose, and I said just tell them this, tell them a rose for a rose, because that's really what each lady is, a rose, beautiful, and fragrant, and lovely, and this is what we say to you, it's our blessing to you today, and the aroma of these roses began to fill the sanctuary, but there was something sweeter than the aroma of those roses, it was the aroma of Christ, it was absolutely beautiful, and I'll never forget it, afterwards I had many responses from women, this one touched me the most, I'll call her Cindy, she wrote and said, Dear Pastor Alan, the effect this morning's service had on me has left me with a compelling need to let you know, you see I've suffered dishonor at the hands of men in my life, but the one that has bruised my petals the most is my relationship with my father, I am the preacher's daughter you spoke to this morning, the extreme legalism we practiced in our family caused me to grow up ostracized and lonely, I married young to escape, and found myself in an abusive relationship, many years later my husband abandoned our three girls in me, I had made no effort to reconcile, and one day, sitting at my kitchen table, my father quietly berated my unforgiving heart, several years later my father refused to share in my joy or rejoice that I'd found a husband who honored me and treated me with respect and dignity, he refused to attend our wedding or even acknowledge our marriage, this morning, at first I felt a weight of hurt and grief as I wept when you voiced the apology to the preacher's daughter, but as the service progressed, and I witnessed the conviction of the spirit on a whole congregation of men, and continued to hear your words of blessing, I was overwhelmed with a feeling of cleansing and healing like I've never experienced, it was as if my father himself had made things right, a heavy weight's been lifted from my heart, and the chains of hurt were shattered, my bruised petals are healed, and my joy could fill a rose garden. Alan Wright, today's teaching, A Rose for a Rose, from a conference titled Free Yourself, Free Yourself, and that's our series title as well. Pastor Alan is back with us in the studio with a parting good news thought for today in just a moment.
Stick with us. Unlock the power of blessing your life. Discover God's grace-filled vision for your life by signing up for Alan Wright's free daily blessing. If you wanna fill your heart with grace and encouragement, get Alan Wright's daily blessing.
It's free and just a click away at pastoralan.org. Can you imagine what it would be like to be accepted perfectly? Envision it. Feeling free to be yourself with no fear of rejection. If you mess up, people don't roll their eyes, make fun of you, or love you less. Ever since the fall, the human heart has been riddled with shame. It's a lie that says, until you measure up, you can't be truly acceptable. In his highly acclaimed book, Free Yourself, Be Yourself, Pastor Alan Wright not only exposes the lies of shame, he leads you into a revolution of God's love that heals your soul. Your freedom, joy, and destiny as you shed performance-based living and let God take the shame off you for good. It's a life-changing, full-length book from Alan Wright.
Free yourself, be yourself. The gospel is shared when you give to Alan Wright Ministries. This broadcast is only possible because of listener financial support.
When you give today, we will send you today's special offer. We are happy to send this to you as our thanks from Alan Wright Ministries. Call us at 877-544-4860.
That's 877-544-4860. Or come to our website, PastorAlan.org. Back now with Pastor Alan, our closing final thought as we place a bookmark here in a rose for a rose. Such a unique message in a wonderful series that we're in Free Yourself, Be Yourself.
I'll never forget that day. It was like the sanctuary was filled with the very aroma of Christ as men are handing out roses and repenting and handing out roses and telling every lady, a rose for a rose. A blessing that's being given and an act of contrition on behalf of those who may not know how to confess. And it's life-changing if you could receive that. Our listeners, like all of us, have been heard, every single one of us. And the key to freedom is not excusing the wrongdoing, but truly authentically forgiving. And this is part of the path to freedom from shame, is to forgive those who may not have ever asked for your forgiveness, but you need to not hold on to your judgment of them, but turn them to God and trust them to Him so that you can be free. You can forgive in Jesus' name. Today's good news message is a listener-supported production of Allen Wright Ministries.
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