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Brokenness: The Plan - Part 1

In Touch / Charles Stanley
The Truth Network Radio
April 29, 2024 12:00 am

Brokenness: The Plan - Part 1

In Touch / Charles Stanley

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April 29, 2024 12:00 am

It's not easy to give everything you have to God, but it's how He can give you His best.

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Welcome to the In Touch Podcast with Charles Stanley for Monday, April 29th. Is your relationship with Jesus at the top of your list of your most valuable things?

Today's podcast shows us what happens when other things take priority. If I should ask you, do you want God's best for your life? More than likely you would say, why sure I do. Then if I should ask you, do you want to become the person God wants you to be and to be able to accomplish the things that God decided, predetermined and would have you to accomplish and achieve in your life?

You say absolutely. Then are you willing for God to do whatever is necessary in your life to bring you to a full surrender of all of your abilities and talents and gifts so that He may be able to do what He chooses to do in your life? Now you say those first two questions, yes.

The third one, not sure about that third one. Are you asking me, am I willing for God to do anything that is necessary to bring me to a point of total and full surrender of my life? Yes, that's the question because you see, for us to be able to receive the best of God's blessings, for us to be able to become the persons that God wants us to be and achieve the things that God wants us to achieve in life, we have to surrender our will to Him. Now that's not easy. God never says it's easy. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that it's easy. In fact, the truth is it's very difficult and oftentimes we don't like the process. We would like to be able to read a book and say, well, here's what the Bible says and I read the Bible and I pray and I give and I go to church and therefore isn't that it?

No, that's not it. Well, what does it cost? What is required of us? And if you really want God's best for your life, you listen very carefully. If you want to achieve the things that God has set out for you to achieve in life, you listen carefully. There is a principle, a very, very important principle and I want you to go to John chapter twelve. John chapter twelve, and let's go back up here to verse twenty and I want us to read just a few verses and just make a comment about this and then I want to explain this very, very important principle.

It's absolutely essential. It does not make any difference who you are. It doesn't make any difference where you go to church. It doesn't make any difference what you believe.

This is an undeniable, irrefutable, inescapable, divine principle that God has in mind for every single one of His children. So beginning in verse twenty. Now there were some Greeks among those who were going up to worship at the feast. These then came to Philip who was from the side of Galilee and began to ask him saying, sir, we wish to see Jesus. Philip came and told Andrew.

Andrew and Philip came and told Jesus and Jesus answered them saying, the hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified, which meant, referring to His crucifixion, ultimately His ascension into heaven. And then He said, Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone. But if it dies, God bears much fruit.

He who loves his life loses it. And he who hates his life in this world will keep it to eternal life. If anyone serves me, he must follow me. And where I am there, my servant will be also.

If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him. Now here's what He's saying. Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone. So think about it for a moment. If you took one grain of wheat and you placed it on the barn floor, on the table, most anywhere, and you just left it there, it would finally disintegrate. There'd be nothing there but powder. You take the same seed, you place it in the earth, cover it up, it's dark, and there's moisture and there's sunlight and warmth and before long, there's a little green stalk that comes up and before long, you have a whole bunch of wheat. That is grains of wheat out of just that one. Now if you took those grains of wheat and you planted all of those or buried all of those, you know what would happen if you kept doing that year after year after year? You could have a million acres of wheat from one simple grain.

That's the potential. But as long as you keep it on the barn floor, on the table, anywhere, what do you have? A disintegrating, lifeless nothing. Now here's the principle. Jesus was referring to His own life when He said, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone, but if it dies, it bears much fruit.

Now if you love your life, you're going to lose it. Lose your life for my sake, have eternal life. If you're going to serve me, you've got to follow me and where I am, there my servant will be and if anyone serves me, the Father will honor him.

Think about this for a moment. If Jesus had lived His life and never been crucified for you and for me, He would have led some people to know what eternal life's about. He could have taught them and many people might have been healed, but you see, that wasn't enough. Jesus came for the purpose of dying. He had to die, be buried and then rise again and ascend to the Father and offer His life as a living sacrifice, the atoning sacrifice, the substitutionary sacrifice and therefore, all these centuries, people have been saved by His grace and love and mercy as a result of the cross. He had to die.

Now you say, Well, what does that have to do with me? Listen to what Jesus said. He said, He who loves his life will lose it and he who hates his life in this world will keep it to life eternal. If anyone serves me must follow me. Now in order to follow Jesus, you can't follow a bunch of other folks.

You have to make a decision of who will be the Lord and the Master of your life. Now here's the principle. The principle is just as simple. The principle is that if you and I are going to experience the best that God has offered for us and if you and I are going to become the persons that God wants us to be, you and I must be willing to surrender our life completely and totally to Him. Will it be easy?

No, it will not be. Is it necessary? It is absolutely essential. Because you see, that's the only way God can give you His best. When you position yourself by a full surrender of your life, only then can you exercise the gifts and the talents and the skills. Only then can you become and only then can you achieve the things that God has set for you because it can only be done through Him.

So as long as you insist on having your way, it'll never happen in your life. So that brings us to the whole idea of brokenness because you see the seed had to break and the moisture and the warmth caused it to crack and out of it came life. You remember when Jesus was there in the house and the woman came and broke her alabaster box and poured it on His feet and the roamer filled the room? It's only when it was broken that everybody was able to enjoy it and the Lord to be blessed. That principle goes all the way back through the Scriptures and all the way to the end. God's process of bringing you and me to the place where we can enjoy His best and become His best, all of that is wrapped up in the principle of our willing to die to our old self. As somebody says, well, you know what? I've been hearing that idea of dying to yourself for ages. What in the world does that mean? Well, let's put it this way. Here's what brokenness is about. Brokenness is about God working in your life and my life and sending into our lives those things that are absolutely essential to bring you and me to a place of absolute and total surrender. As we said, it's very difficult.

But what is He dealing with? Why would He do that? Why can't we just read the Bible? Why can't we just get down and pray and say, okay, Lord, I want you to have your way? For the simple reason, that's just not the way life is because that's just not who you and I are. There's something else that God has to deal with. And when I think about how He deals with this and how He deals with us individually, we have to remember that we didn't come into this world with a bent toward God.

We came into this world with a bent away from God. So God has to deal with something about us to bring us to the place that we're willing to make that full surrender. Now, so God has purposed in your life and my life to bring every area of our life in submission to His will. He's purposed to do that.

He's willed to do that. And you'll recall He said He's predestined you and me to be conformed to the likeness of His Son. So God has His eye on something in your life and mine. And so we might ask the question, well, that being true, then why the pain? If God loves us, why the pain? Listen, God does love us. Every single thing that God allows in your life and my life as His children is an expression of love in one way or the other. I may not think it's loving.

It may be very painful and hurtful to me. And I may cry out, God, if You love me, why do You allow this? And how many times have all of us said to Him, Lord, where are You? And God has always answered right where I've always been, right here. We've often said, God, why do You allow these things in the light of what Your Word says? Here's what Your Word says, and I read that You love me and that You love me unconditionally.

What is this? God is a God of compassion. He is not a cruel God. He is not a hard God. He's a God of compassion and love and understanding.

But you know what? His love for us motivates Him to allow you and me enough pain and hurt and suffering in our life to bring us to a full surrender. We don't like it.

I don't like it any more than you do. And oftentimes when you see something beginning to happen in your life and you know the pain's coming, we want to cry out to God to some way, Lord, let me avoid this. God, help me some way to escape this. Lord, help me to be able to walk around this. And God sends us right through the heartache, right through the pain, right through the loss.

Very, very difficult for us at times. And sometimes we misunderstand this, and we think that because the suffering comes our way, that God is angry with us or that He's punishing us. So remember this, God does not punish His children. Punishment is the wrath of God exhibited and expressed toward people who have rejected their only hope of salvation, which is Jesus Christ. When you reject Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, you have no other hope whatsoever to get to heaven. So when a person rejects the Lord Jesus Christ, they're rebelling against God, saying no to Him, and so the wrath of God will come upon them. Now what about the believer? Somebody says, well, you know, sometimes I think what comes in the life of a Christian, of a believer, is as bad as it is in the life of an unbeliever.

Well, it may look that way. The only difference is this. One of them is motivated by the wrath of God, and the other is motivated by the love of God. So what is he doing? He's training us. And so what is this discipline?

What is this pain and hurt and suffering? It's not punishment. It is discipline. It is God's tool to bring you and me to the end of ourselves so that we can begin to see things the way He sees them. We can begin to become the persons that God wants us to be. That is, we can begin to die to those things in our life that are obstructions to the very blessings that we seek. And sometimes the very thing you and I want most in life, we can't have it. And it's not because God doesn't want us to have it.

It's because we can't handle it. Now once in a while I've heard somebody say, well, I guess the reason I'm just not making it financially is God knows I can't be trusted with it. And sometimes people will say that, usually in a humorous sort of way.

The truth is they don't even realize that what they're saying is the truth. It will become an object, not of just affection. It'll become a God in your life. It'll become the most important thing in your life. You'll put your whole security in it, and God is not going to allow that. People who are able to manage their way through, resist God, fight, whatever is necessary to get what they want in life, and oftentimes they get it.

And you know what they discover? Not all they thought it was going to be. There's no security in it. They're still not happy, still not contented.

Why? Because God is up to something better than just giving us things. He's up to something so good, so powerful, so eternal, so important to Him, so necessary in your life and mine. He's willing to watch us cry, willing to feel our pain, and willing to turn up the heat when necessary in order to bring us to a place of total and full surrender. Now the big question is this. What is this that He's after?

Why turn up the heat? Why can't I get down and pray and say, Lord, here's what You said. You said, if I ask, it'll be given. If I seek, I'll find it. If I knock, it'll be opened. Well, Lord, I'm praying and I'm asking and seeking and knocking, and it's not happening.

You see, here's what happens. Oftentimes a person will find them a verse of Scripture, and I can find you a bunch of verses of Scripture about prayer. And if you isolate those verses, then surely you say, well, here's what God said. If He asked anything in my name, He says, I'll give it to you, but what in the world does that mean?

Anything in His name means under His authority, in keeping with His purpose, and by His enabling power. And oftentimes, we want to eliminate all the things that really matter to God. So let's ask ourselves the question, what is this whole issue and why is it that God finds it necessary to allow brokenness in your life and mine, to allow this pain and suffering and hurt. Now we've all asked Him why. I've asked Him why.

You've asked Him why, but I can tell you this. I discovered this, and I'd like to think that I've learned it. No matter what pain and suffering and hurt that I may have experienced or you may have experienced, I can only speak for myself. I can tell you today that every single time when I have looked back after I've been through it all, I've been able to say, thank you, God.

You didn't listen to me. Thank you for not taking it away. Thank you for keeping it there until you were able to accomplish your purpose and wrench from me, take from me, cause me to be willing to give up, lay down, surrender, yield, whatever it is in my life that you know doesn't fit who I am and what you want me to become in life. I can tell you, you will never, never be sorry for surrendering your life to Him. You'll never be sorry for laying down anything that He wants, separating yourself from anything or anybody that is His will for you to separate yourself from. God has a holy plan. Listen, when you look back at it and you think, God, it's so simple and so plain. How could I have rejected?

How could I have resisted something like that? And yet we do. Now I want you to think about this for a moment. What is it that God's after? He's after the self-life and the self-life is our desire to advance and to be known or to achieve at other people's expense. He's after this whole idea of being self-centered. The world isn't centered around us. Listen, Jesus is the center of the world.

He's the center of everything. A self-centered person wouldn't say it, but their lifestyle, their actions, their attitudes, their treatment of other people, it all is self, big I. I rule, I reign no matter what. And to be self-dependent, self-sufficient, and self-will, all of that.

You know what brokenness is all about? Bringing that to its end, bringing it to death. God wants death to the self-life in us. Turn to Galatians chapter five for a moment. Galatians chapter five says, here's what happens when you begin to allow the Spirit of God who lives in you to rule and to reign. When the self-life begins to die, is all of that going to happen at one time?

No. But now watch this. Once you make that decision and you trust God to be willing to work in your life, here's what you're saying to Him. So I want to warn you. You're saying, Lord, whatever it takes, whatever it takes to get my attention, whatever it takes to drive this self-life out of me, God, send it. I'm going to trust you to give me the grace to bear it. I'm going to trust you to walk me all the way through it. But God don't quit on me until you have done your wonderful work in my life.

You know what happens? Galatians chapter five, listen, when the Holy Spirit who lives inside of you is allowed, listen, when the soulishness is put aside and the Spirit of God is allowed to flow through you, this is the kind of person you'll be. A person in verse twenty-two who knows how to love and be loved. A person in verse twenty-two who has joy in their heart, even in their difficult times. A person who has peace ruling and reigning in their heart, even in troublesome times. A person who has learned to be patient, forbearing, giving the other guy a second chance. Kindness, goodness, faithfulness, something's happened to your life. Gentleness and self-control, but that self-control means simply this, that because the Spirit is working in your life, you don't yield to those things you once yielded to. You know what God is after?

Here's what He's after. Putting to death the self-life so that the life of the Lord Jesus Christ can flow through you and what happens? Then you become the kind of person, not only listen, who can love and have peace and contentment and joy and all the rest, but you'll be the kind of person who will, listen, attract people to Jesus because they will see in you this awesome life that they've never seen. And let me tell you something, the world is looking for people who demonstrate what we preach, that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. He loved us enough to down the cross, and if we follow Him, He will bless us and enable us and strengthen us and guide us and bless us in ways that only He can fully understand. The world's looking for truth, proof that what you and I believe works and that it's real.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-04-29 02:16:54 / 2024-04-29 02:24:54 / 8

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