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October 31, 2021 1:00 am
Fractured, stressed, broken, dysfunctional…all these words describe the state of the family today. This chaos is often rooted in failed communication in marriages. The communication issue goes all the way back to the Garden of Eden. Shame, the fear of rejection, and blame are all brought to light in Genesis 3 with Adam and Eve. Like them, we manipulate each other to meet our own needs, rather than loving our spouse through meaningful communication—a love that reflects God’s own character.Click here to listen (Duration 54:30)
Adam and Eve tossed Paradise aside when they disobeyed God like them. We manipulate each other to meet our own needs, not realizing that meeting our mates needs is the real key to marital happiness as will see dealing with rejection is a major component in rescuing of failing marriage from Chicago. This is The Moody Church.
Our weekly service of worship and teaching with pastor Erwin lutes are today.
Pastor concludes a four-part series on till death do us part keys to success in marriage later will come to talk about couples being miles apart in the same house the Moody choir comes now to open today's service were glad that you are here worshiping the Lord and when we leave the things of this world after we have parked our cars and found our way into the sanctuary. We devote these moments, especially to the Lord, praying for his guidance.
Praying for the ability to worship him acceptably and that our thoughts in our minds might be focused in worshiping him alone were glad that you are here. Let's bow together in prayer and invite the Holy Spirit to lead us as we worship the Lord together.
Father, we do dedicate these moments to you for all who are listening and watching. We pray your blessing upon them. May this be a time in which they concentrate. May all of us, Lord, think about you and your goodness to deal with the issues that you bring to our attention, and above all else, to glorify you by giving you ourselves. We thank you in Jesus blessed name.
Amen, amen. Stand with me as we honor the reading of the word for the Lord comes to us this morning from first Chronicles chapter 29 verses 10 through 13. I will read the standard print. Please join me on the bold David praise the Lord in the presence of the whole assembly saying praise be to you oh Lord God of our father Israel, from everlasting to everlasting yours or the Lord is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor for everything in heaven and earth is yours, yours, oh Lord, is the kingdom you are exalted as head over all wealth and honor come from you. You are the ruler of all things in your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all. Now, our God, we give you thanks and praise your glorious name father owner. Pray for the marriages at The Moody Church. We think of those who seem to be so nice on the outside, but inwardly they are full of turmoil and trouble father. Today we call upon you bring healing and bring hope and bring encouragement and father for those who are here, who'd never trusted Christ as Savior.
We pray that they may do that. But Lord, who is sufficient for these things who can enter the human heart who can change human nature.
We can't, we call upon you today father to do miracles in restoration and healing and help in redemption.
Now, Lord. It's all up to you, Jesus, blessed name, amen.
So what do you think the American family is going to look like in the next century. According to Time magazine.
It will be interracial bisexual divided by divorce multiplied by remarriage. The concept of illegitimate children will vanish, because the nuclear family will have vanished.
In fact, the nuclear family that was so popular during the 50s will be thought of as having been abnormal. There will probably be serial monogamy that is one partner at a time, but several partners during a lifetime. You may get married and right into the contract that you're marrying this person your college years and then you have a career and during that period of time you're married to someone else and then you decide to divorce that individual and retire with someone that is compatible.
Finally, and that children will have to divide their affection and their loyalty between stepmothers birth mother's biological father stepparents and neck stepparents. Schools will have to have 24 hour support structures for childcare sanctuary for abused children may be in Huxley your member presented this in the brave new world, there will actually be baby hatcheries staffed by nurses who will do the rearing for people and then everybody will be free and everybody will be equal and live in on uninterrupted happiness and bliss and that that's exactly what's going to take place, and if Time magazine is anywhere near correct. I'm glad that I'm living in this century and not in the next one because the emotional distress that is going to take place is going to be absolutely devastating and unbelievable and the reason is because God put it in the heart of every little boy that is been born in every little girl that is ever been born to have two parents who love the child but who also love each other to give it securities stability and a sense of identity and already today in the world.
We have all of these things that we call dysfunctional families this morning.
I'm going to be referring to married couples quite a bit but actually this will apply to singles and teenagers because it's going to have more to do with that those human relationships in the disruptive things that are tearing the fabric of our emotional being a part today I speak on the topic miles apart in the same house. Basically a message on communication or the lack of it in our homes and in our own lives. Why is communication so important. Well there is several reasons. First of all, because communication is necessary to solve problems. You see, communication can be defined is giving messages both verbally and nonverbally that are understood and received, and that communication solves problems because we need to communicate in this world. Some people are better communicators than others.
On the way down to church this morning. I was trying to think of that statement. I hope I have it correctly. I know that you think you understand what I said but what you heard is not what I meant well. Sometimes we do get into those problems of communication other with someone who is writing a biography on a very important person and this individual's grandfather died in the electric chair at the Sing Sing prison because of a crime that had been committed and the author wanted to put it in the biography but you don't want to just say that trying to ruin the person's reputation so that story was included in the biography, but it was written like this. This person's grandfather occupied the chair of applied electricity in one of America's best known institution. He was attached to his position and literally died in the harness. Well, that's 1 Possible Way of saying it. Communication or did you hear about the child the came home and said to her mother mommy. My teacher said that if I am ever absent again from Sunday school. She's going to throw me into the furnace mother couldn't believe that the child actually heard correctly but the child insisted. That's what the teacher said so.
The teacher was asking what the teacher said was if your absent one more time I'm going to have to drop you from the register well. Communication communication is important, but there's a second reason why communication is important not only to solve problems, but that is because of the need for harmonious relationships, particularly within the family. We have to have the same kinds of goals. The same kind of vision that the shared value is the. The similar beliefs and all of that becomes important to the communication process. But there's 1/3 reason why I speak about communication today and it is the most important and that is that communication is absolutely necessary for love. It is impossible to love deeply.
Unless you communicate deeply unless there is a sharing of who you are with someone real communication has not occurred, and real love is impossible because it is impossible to love a stranger real genuine love knows the good the bad and the ugly about the other person but still loves them unconditionally, just as they are with the recognition that improvements may have to be made. Of course, not necessarily loving everything they do.
But there is a sense in which that person is received and accepted and allow no matter what lies beneath the surface that is genuine, true, lasting, unconditional love. But the problem is that there is very little true communication in our homes and it's not possible to have a happy marriage certainly without communication, and if you were brought up in a home where there was very poor and bad communication. You have felt the effects there are some people who say I'm not going to communicate. Except of course on the superficial level, and so the talk becomes very very mundane because there is no real sharing of who that person is. And so what people do is they build structures they put down the foundation they build walls they they close ceiling of their lives and then they put do not disturb sign on the door of their heart like one woman says I'm married to the great stone face all that he does is sit there and read the newspaper and he simply will not communicate.
The problem is you cannot love under those conditions and that's why there are so many frustrated women because women desire communication oftentimes much more than men do, and they desire to communicate and it can work the other way around as well, but unless there is a breaking of those walls that have been so carefully done. There can be no real genuine fulfillment and love. Well, where did all these problems get started. Anyway, why can't we communicate well let's take your Bibles and find out where the whole mess began. Genesis chapter 3 Genesis chapter 3, I am always amazed at how many things all began in Genesis chapter 3 well, you know that Adam and Eve were in the garden and they decided that they would disobey God and we will be commenting on that again next time.
In the message but the I is the van verse seven it says they were opened. This is after. Now they chose to eat of the fruit of the tree that God said they should not eat from. So sin entered into, and that sin that entered into the world has come.
Now upon all individuals.
The Bible says every single person has been tainted by sin.
But notice it says that the eyes of them were opened and they knew that they were naked and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves alloying covering and they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day and the man and his wife themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.
What is the first barrier we notice that sin brings to the human family that is not a block communication first barrier is shame. It was not just merely their physical nakedness that they suddenly became so aware. But along with that. There was also any emotional and spiritual nakedness, because now they were beginning to feel the guilt of theirs in and so they sewed fig leaves together, and they began to hide from each other and then of course they wanted to hide from God. They had been talking to God in the cool of the day and now God comes along and wants to communicate and Adam and Eve are nowhere to be found. They are hiding behind fig leaves behind some trees in the garden doing all that they possibly can to stay out of sight. The awesome unbelievable power of shame. Nowhere does this shame come from in people's lives today. Some of it comes from their families.
If you were brought up in a family where you are slapped and hit beaten or where any expression of sexuality was immediately frowned upon and you were made to feel guilty and shameful.
You will grow up with shame and those of you to whom I am speaking and you know exactly what it is that I'm saying if it applies to you.
You went to school and you went to college and you felt as if everyone who saw you could see the shame within you wanted to run and hide because to you. It seemed as if everyone was peering beneath the glass surface and they could see it all. Parenthetically, I am just a maze at the foolishness of some parents and how all expressions of sexuality and all normal sexual development among children is not simply accepted with joy and with the recognition that that's the way God created us, rather than with a sense of shame and a sense of guilt and a sense of hiding, but many of you were reared that way. Probably shame that your parents inherited from their parents and it can be debilitating and incredibly destructive. But there's another kind of shame. And that is a shame that people feel is not imposed upon them, but it is derived from their own experiences because they have done this shameful thing.
In other many people who have a very very sordid past. They want to keep that past hidden, and that's understandable and there may be some people who may be doing some very shameful things in the present. They may be committing adultery. They may be secretly addicted to pornography.
They may be involved in some kind of bizarre activities, possibly financial improprieties.
All kinds of things and and as a result, you see one of the things that shame does is it absolutely the year the years exposure. There are some people whose lives are like that proverbial iceberg. You see only a little bit of it and if you saw what was beneath the surface. Use sin not believe it.
Just think of the disclosures we find in our newspapers sometimes of prominent people and discover what they been up to and and were shocked, shocked now how do people respond to shame.
Well, they become very defensive. Any attempt to try beneath the surface of their lives. Any attempt is immediately cut off and that lid is slammed down and now instead of simply being buttoned down.
It is nailed down, and if it is a metal lid. It is well down is nobody nobody is gonna find out who they really are and if they are not defenses.
They will also resort to manipulation like the person who whines no you don't really trust me, asking me those questions.
Do you you don't trust me. I just think that through with that person is saying is you want to feel guilty for even asking these questions. See, it's your fault it's not mine to protective device and then of course. Dishonesty flows very naturally because if you've been living a lie to tell one is no big deal. And so what people do is they maintain that secrecy because if there is anything about shame and its incredible power is it absolutely low. This law does exposure and so Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden they were going along in life. Finding places to hide and that's a barrier to communication. Second, not just merely shame.
Bedstead says in verses nine and 10 now then the Lord God called to the man and said to him, the where are you, by the way, that's not because God was a little puzzled and said you know Adam and Eve are playing hide and seek, and I I just can't seem to find him known known that God was saying.
I want you to tell me where you are and don't ever think that you can run from God. God can even find you in Chicago. I'm in God. God's just got a network like you would believe.
Just give it up, give it, and the Lord God called to him and said where are you and he said I heard the sound of the in the garden and I was afraid because I was naked so I sell if the first emotion is shame.
The second is fear. What is he fearing is he fearing God, I mean he and God were talking together, they were taking walks in the cool of the day what's what's the fear in does he fear his wife. What is the problem Adam tell us what is Adam fearing is fearing rejection see now that he feels guilty and those that he has violated the laws and the commands of a very holy God. He is thinking that God is gonna look them in the eye and say Adam, you are going to be banished from my presence forever get on a hair that's what he feared and the other many people who don't communicate because of fear of rejection like a man who told me if my wife really knew I was. She could never love me and so there's a part of him that remains hidden and his wife will never really love him because it's hard to love a stranger and then there are couples who make it difficult for themselves. Like the man who called me from Canada several years ago told me said you know I committed adultery last week. He said I'm simply awash with shame and regret and guilt but he said my wife always told me if you ever commit adultery. I want you to know that I will never never forgive you, and you might just as well recognize the fact that if you do that our marriage is over. How does that man try to go to his wife and be reconciled after such devastation is see she probably said it because she thought that this would keep him from adultery. She may be set at because that's the way she felt judgmental, perfectionistic, and I'm not in any way trying to minimize the awful effect of adultery. Don't misunderstand, but I'm simply saying that how do you take two people and try to get them to communicate when certain rules of been set up by which they say unless you meet my expectations.
There will be no communicate. How do you bring a couple like the fact together. You know, if you feel rejected all that you can do is to retreat into the silence of your shame and your grief and your anger and you can leave in that terrible terrible private world. It's all you can do or if you really feel rejected. What you can do is what many people do and that is make it impossible for other people to accept them. You've met rejected people and so have I and what they have done to us is they have made demands of us that nobody could ever possibly keep because what they are trying to do is to prove that nobody will love them that everybody will reject them and the minute somebody shows them love they will begin to make demand that will inevitably lead to failure. This is absolutely necessary in the mind of a rejected person and that's why rejected. People sometimes in marriages are so incredibly hard to live with because because they are making demands of their partner that no partner could possibly meet. They are out to prove that nobody really loves them and they will make it is hard on you as they possibly can to prove their point. Some of you are struggling with homosexuality and you've kept that hidden because you say you know if I exposed that. Think of the rejection that I would receive. I understand what you're saying but I also want you to know that there is no such thing as real healing until you share with at least one other human being who can be a part of the solution who you really are because there is no prison that is as terrible as that prison called the secrecy that says there's a part of my life out here that I will not share like that man I told you about several years ago to conference was raining outside and he said I want to take a walk with you and so we walked together he said you don't know who I am here from another city. You're leaving town tomorrow, but he said I spent $400 a month on pornography. Help me see there there is there is no prison in Illinois or any other part of the world that is as wretched.
That is as debilitating as that prison that says I will keep my life to myself and not share my need. Now what do Adam and Eve do once God lifts the cover well the first thing of course, most people do is live but how are you gonna lie to God is not worth it because he knows it.
He knows the truth.
So this is what happens verse 11, and a godsend who told you that you were naked. Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat of the man could've answered in three simple words yes I did with him expected that from Adam.
But you know he didn't.
He said, and watch my hands now, Lord, the woman whom thou gavest me thou gavest me, she took of the tree then what's a guy supposed to do. I want you to notice the first of all, he blamed God.
He said I was even awake when this woman was made so you can't blame me for her. That's number one and number two it is she that took of the tree. It's this we will woman whom you what I want you to notice that Adam blamed his wife, even though there wasn't a chance in the world that he had married the wrong woman. This is everlasting proof if proof is needed that the best of marriages have problems this idea that if you meet the right one that you're going to go through life and be a wonderful and happy and never have any disagreements well all that I can tell you is that Rebecca's marriage to me has not been nearly that boring. I want you to know also that we are happier than I think we've ever been in our married life is just great. But you know we had some difficult years. There's no such thing as as everybody just getting along so so but isn't this interesting. Adam and Eve want to pass the buck you will. Rogers says there was the passing of the buffalo.
And then there was the passing of the buck. Well, notice this now God says all okay. It's the woman's fault so he says in verse 13, the Lord God said to the woman, what is this you have done woman said well I was tempted and I ate all no no no no no, the serpent deceived me, and I ate the man blame the woman. The woman blamed the serpent in the serpent didn't have a leg to stand on and the whole blame game that we know so much about today all began here. The failure to take responsibility for the overreaction and for your actions and I want you to know today that no matter how much responsibility your parents may have had, and it may be considerable. Ultimately, there does come a time when we all must take responsibility for our own reactions and when we begin to do that, God begins to give us help me ask you something. What does God do in this situation.
Does he say well you know you guys blew it. I put you together. You disobeyed me that's it. What you need to do is to wait 2000 years until they have talkshows and then go on one of them and spill your guts and try to get some help.
Well, I don't object to talkshows where there is a lot of sharing some of that today is good because people are beginning to realize that it is in to talk about dysfunctional past experiences. But you know God goes way beyond that. I want you to know today that God never leaves people on their own and says you've messed it up. Now let me out of it. Do the best you can know verse 15 I will put enmity between you and the woman in between your seed and her seed, he shall bruise you on the head and you shall bruise him on the this is the first prediction of the coming of Christ. God says that I'm going to put hostility between you serpent represents the devil and the woman and her seed is going to win a battle and the woman's seed turns out to be Jesus Christ and and Satan is going to do his best to conquer Christ but all that he will be able to do is to nip Christ's heel whereas Christ the seed of the woman is going to crash the serpent's head in the dust.
Somebody is going to come who is the seed of the woman who's gonna put Satan in his place and bring redemption to at least a part of humanity. And then, as if that isn't enough, it says in verse 21 and the Lord God made to garment subs skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. What he said to them is you don't need your fig leaves. What you need is some garments of skin and if these were garments of skin.
Obviously, God must have killed some animals to make these close spread of any and Bible commentators for years have seen in this the pre-figure meant of the coming of Jesus Christ.
Because animals were slain in the Old Testament, all pointing to the coming of our Redeemer who would die on the cross and then when Jesus died, he became the Lamb of God which takes away the sins of the world. Now listen to me carefully, God is saying, I will cover your shame will cover your shame. It says in the book of Revelation to the church at Laodicea, the Lord is said, he says, come by of me and I shall give to you white clothing so that the shame of your nakedness might not appear those of you who are living today in that prison of shame. God can cover you come now, let us reason together, says the Lord. Though your sins be as scarlet, and though there are those ugly sores. I will send a snowfall and you will be covered so that your shame will be put away. It says in Psalm 25 they that wait for the shall not be ashamed.
There's a covering for your shame and also because your shame is covered. That's actually also the answer to your fear. Despite our need and despite our helplessness, we can come to God as we are. Knowing that there is a Redeemer to cleanse us and to forgive us and give us a standing before God that can never be earned, but is ours through his matchless wondrous grace and when we do that we begin to have the security to be able to communicate because now we know that we are accepted by God were forgiven by God, we can let others know who we are and take that risk without fearing the rejection and without the pain of the shame overwhelming us so that we cannot only be loved by God, but feel loved, because the guilt is gone. The shame is gone. The fear is gone and that we can begin to love each other there. Some of you who are listening to this message were single and you had some terrible experiences in your relationships.
The minute someone has begun to love you and that there is a relationship that has been developed. You immediately back away because you fear letting someone know who you really are and all of your relationships have to be kept at a distance you cannot you cannot let someone into your I urge you today receive the cleansing of Christ receive the covering for your shame and let someone know who you really are there some of you who are married in your communication lines are incredibly frozen every month. More hostility more anger more shame is stacked on the walls that you have built around you. You have dug those foundations. Yes, you have put up barricades you have cemented your life in you have folded your arm said no is ever going to get inside my world and that's why your marriage is in such bad shape because no one can love you, unless they know you.
Let me tell you a true story. The names are changed, but the story is totally true will say that the man's name was Tim and the woman's name was and both accepted Christ as Savior brought up in a fine evangelical church became Christians in their teenage years and married but became disillusioned with Christianity look at the promises of Jesus you know if you come to me will never hunger. If you believe in will never thirst. They were hungering and they were thirsting and they were looking at the promises and they asked their friends and they received sympathy but no real help, so they just decided to drop out of church. Christianity does not work and began to watch soap operas. They became a part of her day there at home that she was bored with a husband that lacked excitement as she began to watch those soap operas she realized that there was a part of her life that she thought had been missing brought up in a fine Christian home, why there was a whole life out there in the world that she had never experienced the life of excitement the life of the possibility of a new partner and so she had an affair. Her husband would have left her but pride kept him at home because they were known in the community and he just simply didn't want to walk out on her, though she had this relationship when it seemed as if their marriage could not take a single strain that would break it totally and discovered that she was pregnant. The problem was that it was not a moment of rejoicing because she was unsure as to whether her husband was the father of the child. They decided to attend a meeting where some couples had gotten right with God. Some worldly couples actually so yielded themselves to Christ that their lives were full of joy. They were communicating and asked this couple shared their need to get this now. The sharing of the need is so important because they had to break out of that wall of secrecy and anger and hostility in unforgiveness that they were living at as they broke out of that and they shared and needed to these couples, they said we need prayer.
All the couples got on their knees and prayed for this couple that had that great need and during the prayer Tim took his wife's hand and squeezed it and said I forgive you and it was those words that suddenly took all of that stability and guilt and shame and anger and it penetrated those walls that she had so carefully nurtured and built in that night when Tim and Ann got home they did something they should've done early on in their marriage.
They talked all night amid cheers. They share to their expectations. They shared what they liked about one another.
What they didn't like all the disappointments that their marriage marriage had brought, but in the midst of it. They were communicating. Finally, for the first time really communicating and they ended that long marathon talk in prayer. Six years after that experience when their little daughter was six I wrote up there story that occurred in the book I wrote many many years ago and they told me that during that six year.
First of all, the little girl that was born to them did turn out to be their child. But secondly they said that during that six year. They could not remember having one serious argument of any kind. Why because they said to Jesus Christ is really the best marriage counselor why because in the process of communication in the process of allowing one another. Finally, to enter into each other's world of the Bible says there were two or three are gathered together for the purpose of reconciliation. That's the context. Christ said I am there to make sure it happens, you will never sense the presence of Christ more than when you honestly and openly communicate you save it wasn't to painful all yes believe it is painful. It's as painful as slicing and least sore and getting the press out so that it can heal. That's how painful it is, but without it, it can't happen. Some of you in your marriage you will never be healed unless you talk no matter how much you cry and tears are important no matter the pain. Some of you are hiding from one another. You're hiding from God, and I say to you today in the name of Christ in God's name get found get found your playing hide and seek God knows where you are. It's time that somebody else also knew exactly where you are because without communication there cannot be love and God is willing to close your shame set you free, so that finally the great stone face can begin to talk. Let's close now.
Father, I have spoken only words unless the blessed Holy Spirit who has been poured out to his people. Does the work.
The message falls on deaf ears. I cannot penetrate the barriers. I cannot get behind the walls. The words that I speak full dead to the person who says no one will ever find out who I am. But Lord you are the God of the heart. I have done the possible but the impossible is holy and totally up to you.
I pray for singles who are here today history of smashed and painful relationships.
Unable to communicate. I pray for couples that are here today. Unable to really really talk about what you come to us sinners need you so desperately. And would you heal us.
Would you wound us and then let us heal and do the work that you need to do for your glory in Jesus name, amen on today's Moody Church.
Our pastor Erwin Luzerne spoke on what to do when couples are miles apart in the same house. The last of four parts in a series on till death do us part. We hope you and your mate have benefited from this series till death do us part can be yours on CD for a gift of any amount to The Moody Church. Our call 1-800-215-5001. Let us know you'd like to support Moody Churches ministry, call 1-800-215-5001 or you can write to us at Moody Church media 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago, IL 60614 online go to moody offeror.com that's moodyoffer.com join us next time for another Moody Church. Our with pastor Erwin Luzerne and the congregation of historic Moody Church in Chicago. This broadcast is a ministry of The Moody Church