Date: 
Sunday, January 15, 2012 - 9:45am
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Bible Reference: 
Psalms 147:1-3

THE GOD WHO HEALS
PSALMS 147:1-3

 

OPENING REMARKS

        How many of you have ever broken a bone?

                Had stitches?

                Had surgery?

        At lunch today, share with the people at the table where you are eating the dumbest thing you ever did that resulted in injury?  Let me give you two examples.

        I read about these two teenagers who decided to ride a trash can with wheels down a main road near their college campus.  The trash can, with one person inside and one on top, got going so fast they couldn’t jump off.  At the bottom of the hill, the trash can smashed into a car that was going through a green light.  Wouldn’t you like to know what the policeman wrote in his accident report?  What do you think the insurance company said when the driver of the car called to file a claim?

        A couple out on the west coast was playing Frisbee in an area where these gigantic elephant seals where sunning themselves.  As the man ran for the Frisbee, looking up, he ran right into and over an elephant seal.  He flipped over the top and broke his arm.  How do you not know where the elephant seal is lying? How do you miss that?

        This morning I want us to look at how God heals the wounds of our heart.  Physical wounds we understand.  Broken bones we can deal with.  But only God can heal the wounds found deep in our soul.  Wounds that come from our bad experiences and past relationships…wounds of abandonment, criticism, ridicule, failure, and abuse. 

Psalms 147:1-3

1Praise the LORD!  For it is good to sing praises to our God; for it is pleasant, and a song of praise is fitting. 

2The LORD builds up Jerusalem; He gathers the outcasts of Israel.

3He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. 

         Everyone has emotional wounds.  We may mask them, hide them and deny them, but we all have them.  See wounds don’t prove you are weak.  Wounds simply prove you are human.  Tough guys may not cry, but even tough guys get hurt.

        And I know there are some tough men and women in this room.  There are men in here who, when it comes time to change the tire on the car, they don’t mess with a jack.  They simply hold the car up with one hand and put the tire on with the other.  But even tough guys have a heart and if you have a heart, it has a wound.

        Toward the end of Exodus 26, God speaks to Moses and tells him to tell the people that God’s name is Jehovah Rapha.  In Hebrew that means, “I am the God who Heals”.  The passage from Psalms 147 says that God heals the broken hearted, He applies the bandages to our wounds. 

        If we let God work, if we open our hearts, if we get honest before the Lord, He can and He will heal the wounds in our soul. 

 1.  ADMIT YOUR PAIN

        Because we live in a sin infested world, hurt is going to happen.  There is no one perfect.  Look at the person next to you and say, “You are not perfect”.  Because no one is perfect, we are going to do things that hurt each other.  It is as simple as that.  Hurt is a part of life.  We are going to be hurt deeply sometimes.  The first step in experiencing God’s emotional healing is to admit the pain.

        Now we all respond to pain differently.

        Some people try to ignore it.  They hope it will just go away.  Sometimes that helps, but it doesn’t heal.  Emotional pain doesn’t fade, it festers.

        Others try to forget about it.  Just let is slide.  Well, sometimes that is down right impossible.

        Others still try run from it.  That is why alcohol and drugs are such a big problem in our society.

        Ignoring your pain, trying to forget your pain and trying to run from your pain really doesn’t work.  You may get momentary relief, but your problem is not solved.  When you decide you want God to heal you, your first step is to admit your pain. 

        Be honest and acknowledge that you have been wronged, that you have been hurt, that you are wounded.  Even the toughest people carry emotional scars.  You think John Wayne didn’t have any issues?  We don’t like to admit our weaknesses, but wounds are not weaknesses.  And trying to deny the pain or suppress the pain simply prolongs the pain.  Until you get honest, you are not going to be healed.

        Also be honest with God.  Tell God how you feel.  He can handle it.  God cannot work until you get honest before Him.  Tell God your pain.  Admit your fear.  Confess your anger.  Own up to your resentment.  Uncover your bitterness.  He won’t think less of you for admitting that you are going through a painful experience.  For God to work, you have to start by being honest with Him. 

 2.  FORGIVE THOSE WHO HURT YOU

        So the first step in emotionally healing is to admit your pain, step number two is you have forgive those who hurt you.  Mark it down, God cannot begin to heal you until you begin to forgive.  For your own sake you have got to give up the right to get even.  One of the most difficult decisions in life is, “Do I want to get well or do I want to get even?”  Either God is going to heal you as you forgive the one who hurt you or you are going to perpetuate your hurt by hanging on to the memory of the pain.   

        Getting even doesn’t get rid of the pain.  There is only one way to get rid of the pain.  God has to heal your heart and healing doesn’t take place until your start forgiving. 

        You say, “But they don’t deserve to be forgiven”.  You are right they don’t.  But neither did you and God forgave you.  We don’t forgive because they deserve it.  We forgive because as long as you hold onto your resentment you will be stuck in your pain.  If you offer grace you will find healing.  If you demand justice you will keep hurting.

 Romans 12:19 msg  - Don’t insist on getting even; that’s not for you to do.  “I’ll do the judging”, says God.  “I’ll take care of it.”

         Trust God.  He will balance the books.  Offer forgiveness, find healing and move on. 

 Psalms 56:8  - You have kept record of my days of wandering.  You have stored my tears in your bottle and counted each of them. 

         God has kept a record of you’re your pain, your hurt, your tears.  He going to settle the score one day because He is a God of justice.  Nothing has ever slipped His watchful eye.  No single hurt has gone unnoticed.  Since God has a written record and since God is going to take care of it, you can turn it lose, turn it over to Him and let it go. 

 Hebrews 12:15  Make sure no one misses out on God’s wonderful kindness.  Don’t let anyone become bitter and cause trouble for the rest of you.

         Don’t hang on to a grudge.  It will turn you bitter and then you become a troublemaker.  Turn it loose, let God take care of it. 

 3.  LOOK TO THE FUTURE

        Step three is change your focus.  Stop living in your past and your pain and start living in our future and your gain.  God has a plan for you and it is a good plan, in fact it is a great plan.  God came up with it so you know it has to be perfect.

 Jer. 29:11-13

11For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.

12Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.  13You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart. 

         God has a plan for His people.  A plan to prosper us and not to harm us.  But you can only leverage God’s plan and reap the benefits when you search for God with all your heart.  And you can not search for God with all your heart if bitterness has sunk its talon into your heart.  God wants to heal you, restore your soul and bring you peace.  But He can’t do that as long as you keep dwelling on your past and reliving all your hurt and pain. 

        The way to get over a painful past is to trust God for an emotionally prosperous future.  Those painful memories aren’t going to turn you lose and go away.  You can’t just forget them, you have to replace them.  And you replace them with the truths from God’s Word that tells you God is at work, He has a plan for your life, He is preparing for your future and it is going to be good. 

 4.  REACH OUT AND HELP OTHERS

        The final step in experiencing God’s healing power is to begin to help others.  That is called ministry.  When we can get to the point where our pain is no longer suffocating us and we can take our eyes off ourselves and begin to show compassion to those around us, then God can begin the final step in healing. 

2 Cor. 1:3-5 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubes

So that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.

For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows. 

         God is a God of compassion.  He really cares how you feel.  God is a God of comfort.  In fact that is one of the main roles of the Holy Spirit.  He is the comforter.  And it is God Himself who will comfort us during out time of pain and suffering so that He can then use us to comfort others who are going through a difficult time.  God will so comfort you if you will let Him, that His comfort will over flow your life and touch the lives of those around you.  And isn’t that better than letting bitterness eat at you and thoughts of revenge haunt you? 

        Come clean before the Lord.  Admit your pain.  Forgive.  Change your focus and minister to others. 

  

THE GOD WHO HEALS
Jan. 15, 2012

PSALMS 147:1-3

Exodus 26 - Jehovah Rapha

 

1.  ADMIT YOUR PAIN

 

2.  FORGIVE THOSE WHO HURT YOU

 

Romans 12:19

Psalms 56:8 

Hebrews 12:15 

 

3.  LOOK TO THE FUTURE

 

Jeremiah 29:11-13

 

4.  REACH OUT AND HELP OTHERS

 

2 Corinthians 1:3-5