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September 8, 2021 12:00 pm
Mike is joined by his good friend Pastor Steve Goode of North Side Baptist Church in Greensboro, NC.
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This is good Truth Network welcome to If Not for God stories of hopelessness that turn to hope.
Your host Mike Zwick. If not for God with like today. We had a very very special guest pastor do. He is the lead pastor at Northside Baptist Church in Greensboro on Cornwallis and actually spoke at his church yesterday and had a really really good time there.
There is wonderful people over there if you're looking for a church home. Check out Northside Baptist Church over in Greensboro North Carolina and pastor Steve actually wrote a book. It's called marriage triage and the name that you're going to look under is Stephen dude S TEP HE and G00 DE and I read the book at her and I really liked it but but pastor Steve he said that in the book. It's not just for the people who were, you know, having a few problems. It's not known. In fact, maybe sometimes I feel like a limited myself to call it marriage triage because it's it's about life triage life triage. There are so many people out there that when you go through circumstances in your life you then all the sudden get stuck and you don't know what to do next and also when you're at the lowest point. Sometimes you can make the most stupid choices on the net on the you never have never done. I never got what you got there for cats that we can so we can do some stupid things so the point is, when were at those lowest moments in as Christians, as believers, because I'm in the book really is written tort of a believers viewpoint you know you a believer in Christ. Their viewpoint but when you get to that point you need to be saying okay, God, how, how am I supposed to walk through this mean how I'm hurt like crazy. I don't know today how my going to walk through this. Even James. James some of my favorite books of the Bible is probably because my mom used to make me read it every time I talk back to her. So I read the book of James, probably more than Charles Stanley and David Jeremiah combined not for good reasons, but it says count it all joy when you go through various trials, because that as you go through those trials it says to go through and learn something of patients you know if there was a number of patients find a cure yet and it but it says that there is this perfecting that occurs occult refinement that occurs in our life when we walk through those trials okay but if, as a believer, were you. We are's being told we're going to walk the trails are gonna happen, then there must be a way that God wants us to enter into an experience that trial and we need to make the right choices so with marriage triage. I said okay you know where when you're at the lowest point in your life and so your marriage is like it that the crossroads art when things are starting to go south.
Then how do you not make decisions and choices that decimate the chance of you coming and have an reconciliation with your spouse. How do you how do you stop and go God, you know, before I start reacting and being really mean and angry. How do you want me to respond so that the book takes a person through how to respond the way that would honor God in at the same time leave the door open.
It just just if there's that chance reconciliation to leave the door open for I believe it's in maybe in the book of Malachi, but work. God says he actually hates divorce and so you know I think a lot of times when people think about divorce they go well you know were not getting along, or it didn't work out.
Or, you know it's it's effort. People say this will. It's just a sheet of paper. It's not just a sheet of paper. I mean it's it's it's a commitment that we make for for life and so you know they used to say this I don't know if they say this anymore, but they used to say. At the marriage, they would say, for better or for worse sickness and in health, until death do us part and I don't think they say that a lot places anymore. Well as well tell you what if if a couple ever came to me and said I need you to take that part of us not having the right of the dealbreaker that you got your set yourself up sold for better for better or better for better work.
No, but what is what they need to realize twos you know what I've had couples come to me before that have had infidelity and then had to counsel couple couples through infidelity. If you Nick about this.
I got had a husband had husbands come to me going to. Here's where we are but you know, my wife wants to reconcile now that she is cheating on me and NF's had the sides on pendulum.
Yeah husbands what is so and so and I'm looking at them going.
That's awesome that's awesome you know something I'm glad 70 like they are what level just to note but not I said don't you understand how can you know if your love was ever to you if your love is never tested. How do you know it's real you know if if you if you go around and play the unicorns and rainbows game all the time. That's not real, but when you come to a fiery trial in your marriage then then and you have to look your spouse in the eye and you have to offer your hand in forgiveness, a end that right there. That's when you can be taught what real love is couples that never go through those things in their marriage. Never have this contest can't have the depth of love that marriages have that have had all of these fiery trials in their marriages that that's how that's how you grow deeper in your walk with you when you have to go through these hard times in your marriage is in. Nobody wants to go through these things, but if you have to go through them. Why why should it not have something called something in your life that that could make you better.
That can make you better believe are better Christian know let love your spouse more yet that's true, and we were at the actually were at the abortion clinic this past Saturday, and I know you're there a lot and is getting to him. I think you're friends with him. Is it right and in he's there. I think not only on Saturdays.
I think every day during the week and a lot of times you'll see his face and he kinda has a sad countenance to me because he sees what's going on constantly dealing with it, but the good news is that there were two women who turned around and decided not to kill their babies not to have an abortion without amazing it was absolutely amazing and you know what what I was thinking of is that you know it's and I think this is the verse actually read it's Ephesians 6 starting verse 10 it says.
Finally, my brother, and breach be strong in the Lord and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armor of God that she may be on the stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto the unto you the whole armor of God that she may be on the withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand stand therefore, having your lure rulings girt about with truth and having on the breast breastplate of righteousness, and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace and and and so witchy when you said that it really resonated with me.
Just to clarify, you're not telling anybody to go out having an affair. You know, we and for the people who have never gone through that that is awesome you know and and not you know I personally haven't dealt with that myself and I don't know a lot of people that we know have and so if you've dealt with that and if you're dealing with that and if you do have a spouse who is truly repentant and is sorry and wants to work things out. That's better than a lot of people because I met a lot of spouses who know lady in Burlington right now who her husband had been cheating on her for years. He didn't care she was trying to work it and he didn't want to stop doing what he was doing.
She and she shouldn't of been the one who was trying to work out while he was just running around it so he finally asked her for her divorce so you know, I do believe that sometimes God intervenes, but but sometimes we do have a battle on her hands and you know it's interesting night. Whether it's in.
I think may be some at one of the reasons why people may not want to work out their marriage or why they may not even want to come and pray outside of the abortion clinic is because sometimes there is a fight that's on our hands. I heard a story about a kid who is getting bullied every day and the bully was taking away his lunch money to a dollar a day and he took away five dollars a week and so he got he was really upset. He said there's nothing I could do. We said so all of a sudden he saw that there were these karate lessons that were available for him and he got really excited and he was about to go start doing the karate but then he found out that the karate lessons were five dollars a week so we said get the five dollars to the bully. You know that's that's somebody who's not willing to to take up the fight.
That's somebody who's not, would doesn't realize that they got a fight on their hands. Conversely, I heard a and this is a true story about a kid who was up in New York City and he has these two guys who came up to her with a gun in their hands and they were to rob him and they came up and they said no were to rob you right now you give us your give a short while and he says no I'm not getting my wallet give us you want know and all of a sudden this is true, think they started to fight him. They try to grab his wallet and all of a sudden there were bystanders who saw what was going on and they were able to break it up in the in the. The robbers ran away and so they they interviewed him a reporter and they said why, why would you not give up your wallet and the kid said because I had my learners permit and that's not worth your life so kids if somebody somebody Roger Chappell orders permitted there. Give your wallet. But I know your work for the police and you would tell the same thing but I do believe that I am with you hundred percent that we do have a fight on her hands and we have to realize that there is an enemy on it.
And so when you've done spiritual counseling in when you talked about this in your book on how you handle the battle had or how you tell people to handle the battle will that's that's a loaded question because you know it. First of all it is for a believer it is it there is a spiritual battle going on even even in their management and we know the number one reason marriages fail starts with the number one thing selfishness that that people began to to look inwardly go you know it's about. This is about my happiness meant Gary Thomas said it best when he said what it meant. What marriage wasn't about her happiness. What was about. What if it we understood it was better holiness. You know that that was about something bigger, but when the spouse. The first thing a spouse must do when they enter into this whole battle, so to speak and when they come in and a lot of times, by the way, remember, spouses are not coming with each other to come get counseling about their marriage even in death. This crazy it's usually one spouse coming because only one spouses at that moment, trying to figure out what to do if there's a point of decision that you have to get them in the mindset.right from the get go to say that you know regardless of what happens in my marriage regardless of the direction this goes they have to to do a Colossians 323 approach in realize what everyone do. I'm going to do this all to God's glory. Not not to my eyes as under is under God. They have to start looking toward their spouse like they're looking through them because Jesus is on the other side of their just kind of met unit referendum that he stays there for them but when our spouse is being resentful, hateful, and all these things we must understand that that were not really doing it for spouse were doing it for God where everything that we do is is a gift as an offering up in the God and if we start seeing things from that perspective. That's when were able to go to Ephesians 5 and start to read through the some of the things about marriage and about how to treat our spouse that we can begin to live those things out. But the first thing we need to do independent entering into the battle is to understand the objective is to honor God regardless of the outcome.
Okay, here's the part about that outcome thing. So if if I'm going do this regardless of the outcome.
It means that there could be two outcomes to this. Neither my spouse is going to reconcile with me and things are gonna come back together or my spouse is going to leave or were not gonna get back together is not it's something that happens were not going to back together but it doesn't change either way that it happens it doesn't change the fact that it's all about honoring God and what you do so because we can always control outcomes. We can't control her our sinful man a sinful man we can control all outcomes, but we can control our response to those outcomes. Yet in unit one of the things when you're when you're talking about this pastor Steve is as I'm thinking about what you're saying is, is that a lot of times when people will come to you and they may be trying to work it out that they don't know the outcome. They don't know what the end result is an inner one of the things I'm reminded of is is what it takes a little bit of his Hebrews 11 where it says that now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen for by the elders obtained a good testimony by faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God so that the things which were which are seen were not made of things which are visible by faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts and through it he being dead still speaks. By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death and was not found, because God had taken him for before he was taken. He had this testimony that he please God and here it is. Verse six without faith it is impossible to please him, for he who comes to God must believe that he is and that he is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him and I'm reminded of is Daniel chapter 3 were talk about this recently where when Shadrach me shack and Abednego they came up to Nebuchadnezzar and they said and he said all you have to do is bow down is that we we don't need answer you in this matter. He said God will is a God will save us in this matter. They said that even if he doesn't were talking about so what they did was they really had some faith there mean we look at the story right now we look at the end of the story and we see that worked out, but you know I guess it was there there and I'm sure there have been some people that you counseled where they've worked in a one of the spouses has worked really hard and it still ended up not working out, but II guess it kinda goes back to that theater Roosevelt quote that I that I talked about yesterday were you know, at least they gave it their best shot.
You know they they they tried as best they could and and you know I think one of the reasons why people don't try as much as they should.
Pastor Steve is because they say will if I try really hard it may not work out and so it's almost easier for them to say further hands in the air and give up because then there not to be disappointed. But on the other hand, I'm sure you seen some stories where it has worked out right yes I have, in and by the way I want to qualify something with what were saying. Also in the essay Ivan qualify this in the book and that's when I was in law enforcement I would say this to any any spouse out there for you.
I say this, the ladies wife's if your husbands beat on you get out. That's at. That's, that's my advice, get out, you do not have to take that kind of abuse ever to get out of the house and I always say it this way. Love them from a distance.
Love is what you don't you get you. You either get out or get him out, but you do not have to put up with that you do not tolerate it. That husband right there is not honoring God and anything that is doing it get out get out, saving, and do it for the sake of kids do it for the site but but an abusive husband if he if, in fact, by the time I have been told about that abuse it. It's been an ongoing thing, it's that that's not the first time when I hear from a special diet from a spouse. They come to me know it's been going on for quite a while so I'm saying just that you want to put up that we know that in mind with that that component in mind, there are those times though in fact were spouse my goal. What if my husband has has laid hands on me.
How do I treated good on this road for a minute and out the first thing I would tell spouses get out, get get distance from from him and then from there you have the leverage to today have that that spouse first about spouse don't think twice about getting out of some sort of domestic violence order to protect yourself for that matter don't don't ever think that that's not a good Tom Cohen get law enforcement involved and hold them accountable were for that abuse for that those actions you do not tolerate it, but the same token, if a spouse ever gets the counseling and help that they need an abusive husband and then turns around and begins to go to counseling and begins to make improvements. I would even say to spouse, then there is approving. Along proving. That would then have to happen and occur for all the TV cut to come back together so that that's what that's just one. One situation or think that spouses need to know that that you can still honor your husband from a distance and you can live out not honoring him with him out away because he cannot dishonor his vile to you if you just get away so well and it in and here's and that's certainly true and so you have to be safe and in you have to be smart about this and in in a week. I believe in having faith also believing that God has given us a sound mind yes on it talks about that in the Bible and talks about renewing our moment so you know we have to be smart about. We have to use common sense, yes. And so that is certainly true.
Here's another thing I've heard on like that lady I was talking about with her husband Running around and I actually know gentleman who was married to a woman for 20 some years and she was a serial cheater and so she kept doing it again and again in and then they finally got to the point where they got a divorce but let me ask you this because this is what a lot of people say is will once a cheater always a cheater of know what will. That's back to where the Bible teaches us and we know this, and I that's that's a loaded question, but we know Bob Paul. Paul even said it that if any man be in Christ is a new creature, old things can pass away and the new things, queso that the transformed mind of a believer cannot stay and see it and be a part of continuing sin can happen. It's it's it's if if you are in a sin that has enslaved you to the point, you cannot leave it or anything else that not then there there is a real issue. There I think there is an issue of the genuineness of that believer and that is it so important understand that that that you have of person who is not a genuine believer in Christ, they can sin without any sort of of life that sin with license they just got right into it, but a true and genuine believer can make that change can can turn to make that change serial cheater serial cheater and they need that still back to the approving periods and accountability and everything else that's that's one thing someone especially in other words, if the if the husband goes out cheats on his wife and then the date the day after he goes to his wife going hey you know it that's in the past you see an issue with that guy that there's a problem there. You know that was a long time ago like four hours to see there's a problem there there there is a chronic problem in and so it's it's back to when it went into even in those situations worse spouse. I do believe that a husband or wife who is a chronic unit cheater that comes to comes to bathe a repentance for that and then goes to the approving. And and and that gets the counseling they need the accountability they need. I believe that anyone can make that change. But it's that's back to accountability and I believe that they have to want to make the change leader and I'll give you an example that the guy who he kept cheating again and again and again that the sad part about him was that he was a strong believer. At one point and he would think he heard from the Lord. The Lord told him to go to another country into a mission trip.
He did that mean the world to speak to all the time and then he got caught up in this and the last I heard was that he says I don't even want to talk to any Christians. I don't want anybody to talk to me about Christianity at all. I think he's just completely turned away from it and note it reminds me, I guess, is it in John chapter 3 where Jesus said that that people love the darkness and they refused to come into the light and so that sin.
I heard this years ago that sin can actually lead atheism because what what how a lot of times we think it's an intellectual issue we we say well they they read some book by Stephen Hawking or whatever, usually it's not the case what it is is that you know the little college meet a girlfriend or boyfriend will start having sex in the little say I can't reconcile these two things I can't continue to have sex outside of marriage, which I know is wrong and continue to be a faith filled Christian believer in so one of the two has to go in and thank God.
Some of them say and have sex and were that's great but a lot of them will say you know what this this Christianity thing just isn't true. So it they think it doesn't bother them as much. But that's a sad place to be a bit, but the good news is that that you have seen a lot of results in that there that in there. There is redemption. Any you know what when I was talking this little bit before you know we were we were talking about it and I said you know sometimes I'm going through something and you know I think that I'm the only person in the world who's who's having this problem. I'm the only person in the world who could ever be going through something like this but it actually talks of Jesus talks about this in Luke 18, he says two men went up into the temple to pray, the one a Pharisee and the other Republican the Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I think the that I'm not as other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers even as this publican fast twice in the week. I give tithes of all that I possess the publican standing far off would not even lift up his eyes into heaven, but smote upon his breath saying God be merciful to me a sinner.
Jesus at the second, I would way justified. And so, whether it's the with the work that you do with the homeless, with about three minutes left.
Whether it's the work that you do with the homeless or whether it's you know you dealing with you know people who are doing things that seem to be really bad. I guess it it kinda helps you to look at it from that second person's point of view and say first of all God have mercy on me a sinner. I know I'm not perfect and then does it make it a little bit easier to pass on that grace. Oh my word. I think that's that's one of the things I believe that it's a lot easier for me to go to a prison and minister to men in prison. Oka than it is for me to go to a group of church people jobs and because there is that there is almost that immunize thing and a lot of them you know if you're raised in church.
You really haven't it when you're raised in church you have this like kind of rose-colored view of the world moments to where you don't see the things you have maybe you haven't fallen in a way that would make you look and view when you see someone else follow here that it would make you less judgmental if you've been through heart rate yourself. So for those that's the Psalms I want to go to when I got a prison schedule, you'll always have those in prison ago. I'm not supposed to be here.
You have a few of those I okay but you, when you work with people in your around people that have fallen right even the homeless are that are at the lowest point in their lives and you see their testimony and see what God brought them through and you see them rejoicing in the relationship with the Lord. Even though there at these low moments in their life and their hurting and they and they fallen in their drug and they've they've had been a drug addict, or anything else. I think it should put in perspective the way that we approach the so for me that's for me that when I see people in the on these from all levels and when you saw the maven law enforcement when you see people at all levels.
It does begin to take that view, that you may have that everything's okay and that everybody's you know really are. Even when you see people do egregious things. It makes you put things in perspective and realize it, except the grace of God.
We do know things, except for my life the way I was brought up and everything else I could be right where they were. That's right in and you know it that the one thing that I try not to say is manna may be bad but at least I'm not that bad because basically if I say that on the first guy yeah right mean and you know I'm glad we could have you on today. Pastor Steve, if you guys can go to go check out Northside Baptist Church. It's over in Greensboro and Cornwallis Road and check out their Facebook page on pastor Steve does a lot of videos.
He was a police and law enforcement for years and we thank God for our law enforcement officer keep us safe and also check. I wanted to check out the book is very tree on by Stephen PhD and PO yet Christian book.com Amazon still find it on Amazon right now so you can find it all is almost as on in back effect if they go to Northside Greensboro, drop me a line through Northside Greensboro.com.
Thank you very much. You mentioned having these turbulent times.
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