Hi! Welcome...

Chris Drury Welcome to chrisdrury.org - thanks for taking the time to be part of our journey. In a nutshell I love being married to Dawn, being a dad, eating curry, telling (bad) jokes, live music and generally trying to enjoy life to the full.



Please pause a while and check out what God has been doing in us over the last few years, and I pray that something here might bless and help you.



.............. Oh and i would love to hear from you, iron sharpens iron you know! - Chris Drury

09 January 2012 ~ 0 Comments

“The future’s so bright, we gotta wear shades…”

This is a copy of the presentation shared with LFM on Sunday morning, 8th January 2012.

In it we look back at 2011 to acknowledge what God has been doing, and then recognising where we are we look to the future and what our priorities for 2012 are.

2011 has been an amazing year! We began with the words of Exodus 33 v 15-16 as our heart cry:

“Lord, unless your presence goes with us, don’t send us up from here; how will anyone know we are any different unless your presence goes with us?”

12-months ago we shared with LFM “Unlocking Our Potential” – a booklet that outlined what as a leadership we felt God had called us to, clearly defining our mission, vision & values but putting some meat on the bones to explain what this meant in practice.

Looking back, I am so excited and encouraged to see that the first step of what we shared has been happening. We have experienced arguably a 50% growth in the last 12-months, particularly through under 30’s making LFM their home. But we have also made a series of investments:

• Physically in the building, giving it a much brighter, warmer and welcoming feel;
• In ministry, with a new youth work team, expanded 18-30’s work, mission’s policy but particularly in Celebrate Recovery, which has been serving both an internal & external need to help people find true, lasting freedom and new life;
• In people, with a new Church Administrator, developing the staff team, mentoring of future leaders, and creating an environment where people can feel safe, loved and empowered to live the lives God always wanted them to have;
• In pastoral care, with a lot of support for hurting people and almost everyone who has made LFM their home being visited; and
• In strategic, external relationships with other churches, the Police, City Council, NHS, agencies etc.

It has been a really busy year, not without some significant challenges as God has been allowing people’s pain and pasts to come to the surface in order to deal with some deep seated issues. Such holiness is never a comfortable experience, but refining us in order to give us a firm foundation for the future is part of the reality of walking by faith, and living with God.

What really excites me is to know I am part of something that God is doing that is very, very real. And it feels like God has been laying foundations and opportunities for the future; to quote a certain band: “the future’s so bright, we gotta wear shades.”

I am particularly excited by the strategic relationships being built, especially with the police. Recognising that Celebrate Recovery is both an internal, pastoral resource/tool it is also an opportunity to serve our city, and it would seem that our pastoral care has now become our external outreach – perhaps how it always should have been? In a city in England in 2012, where the social challenges are no different to the rest of the UK, off the back of Celebrate Recovery it would seem to be that as we care for people within the church who are hurting, the city is saying “Will you do that for us too?”

Opportunities are developing for us to become a real recovery community, supporting people in a number of different ways in recovery from hurts, habits and hang-ups of all kinds, developing bridges for people from the community to connect with us through: J2R, Addaction, RLI hospital, the police multi-agency partnerships, rehabilitation of offenders, mental health, youth mentoring and more. As we walk forward exploring these possibilities, I find myself stirred to believe that genuine faith means more than just what we preach; it matters how we live, and how we can build a real loving family, a real community where we can offer more than a fish, rather helping people to learn to fish for themselves.

As 2012 looms, the challenge therefore becomes looking at how we do life together? How do we help people connect? How do we disciple people so that they can know the full transforming power of God at work in their lives?

“Lord; unless your presence goes with us…”

29 December 2011 ~ 1 Comment

Celebrate Recovery and the 8 Principles


I am really excited about what lies ahead for us in 2012, particularly with the prospect of the impact Celebrate Recovery can have within Lancaster. The above DVD was produced with a the help of funding from LDAAT, and is a short introduction and explanation of what Celebrate Recovery is, who it is for and how it works. It includes stories from people who have been through it over the last 7 months, and has been distributed to lots of agencies across the area.

Our new course is due to begin on 10th January 2012, and with this in mind, having blogged through all 8 principles on our Road to Recovery over the last few months, let us recap on these:

Realise that I’m not God. I admit I am powerless to control my tendency to do the wrong thing and that my life is unmanageable.
(Happy are those who know they are spiritually poor.)
Earnestly believe that God exists, that I matter to Him, and that He has the power to help me recover.
(Happy are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.)
Consciously choose to commit all my life and will to Christ’s care and control.
(Happy are the meek.)
Openly examine and confess my faults to myself, to God and to someone I trust.
(Happy are the pure in heart.)
Voluntarily submit to every change God wants to make in my life and humbly ask Him to remove my character defects.
(Happy are those whose greatest desire is to do what God requires.)
Evaluate all my relationships. Offer forgiveness to those who have hurt me and make amends for any harm I’ve done to others, except when to do so would harm them or others.
(Happy are the merciful. Happy are the peacemakers.)
Reserve a daily time with God for self-examination, Bible reading and prayer in order to know God and His will for my life and gain the power to follow His will.
Yield myself to God to be used to bring this ‘Good News’ to others, both by my example and by my words.
(Happy are those who are persecuted because they do what God requires.)

19 December 2011 ~ 0 Comments

Life’s Healing Choices: Yield Myself to Serve God

Have you ever wondered why you had to go through what you have been through? Ever stopped to ask “Why?” Ever complained “It’s not fair?”

The last step of our road to recovery addresses some of these questions as we consider our 8th principle:

Yield myself to God to be used to bring this ‘Good News’ to others, both by my example and by my words

So why has God allowed me to go through pain? Let us suggest 4 reasons:

1: He has given me free will (Genesis 1:27 – God created man in his own image)

It’s a fact of life that we all have freedom to choose. We can all choose good, or bad. We are all responsible for our own actions, and need to take responsibility for our part when our actions have caused harm to us or others.

The problem we face is that other people also have free will, and sometimes they choose to exercise that free will in ways that are harmful to others – which is not our fault!

2: He uses it to get my attention (2 Corinthians 7:9 – It can take pain to turn us back to God)

Pain is a bit like the oil warning light on a car dashboard – it tells us that there is something else going on that we need to take notice of and resolve. Like with an oil warning light, we can choose

– to ignore the light and hope it will go away (denial)

– to cover over the light and pretend it’s not there (avoidance)

– to take note of the light and fill up the oil (acceptance)

Either of the first two options results in the car breaking down, and no sensible motorist would do that! We all know we need to fill up the oil, and in a similar way the pain tells us we need to stop and take action

3: He uses it to teach me to depend on him (2 Corinthians 1:8-10 – Happened that we might rely on him)

When everything is going well, we tend to cruise on autopilot, and take life for granted. We become complacent, and can stop depending on our higher power Jesus Christ for “our daily bread”, and yet when we go through pain we learn that there is a power greater than ourselves on whom we can depend.

4: He uses it to give me a ministry to others (2 Corinthians 1:4 – So that we can comfort those in trouble with the comfort we have received)

God never wastes a hurt! He may not have wanted us to be hurt, but he can certainly turn around the pain into something that can be of help to others. When we have been through a lot of pain, it makes us acutely aware of what others going through the same thing are experiencing, and helps us to identify and stand alongside them. So when we have been through pain, it gives us a ministry to others that can help them find hope, comfort and new life in the way that we have.

OK, so if that is the case, how do I use my pain to help other people?

1.Be humble

  • We are all fellow strugglers! We all share out of brokenness We are all on a journey

2.Be real

  • Be honest about your faults, fears and failures. Integrity is so important

3.Be a witness

  • You don’t have to win every argument! We don’t argue people into heaven, but love them

As we come to the end of our Road to Recovery, what are you going to do differently? And how can you give back to others with the comfort, grace and love you have received?

12 December 2011 ~ 0 Comments

Life’s Healing Choices: Reserve Time With God

Do you ever feel stuck? Find yourself saying if only…..? If only I didn’t keep doing that thing I do. If only I could stop. If only I could start. If only I could change.

Sometimes we simply seem stuck in patterns of behaviour that we wish we could change. Why is that? Why can’t we seem to change – after all, we want to?  

There are a number of reasons why we get stuck:

1. We try to do it in our own strength

Galatians 3:3 says “Only crazy people would think they could complete by their own efforts what was begun by God.” If we have walked steps 1-3 properly, we have learned to accept that we are powerless against the things that hold us, and we need to allow our higher power to set us free. Many of us have done that, but then we seem to forget it and having broken free, stop relying on God and fall back into relying on ourselves.

2. We try to rush on ahead

Galatians 5:25 says “Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.” Timing is everything, and if we are honest, we’re not very patient. When we do start to get somewhere, we try to rush ahead instead of building up our stamina and endurance, then wonder why we don’t have enough in the tank to last the distance.

3. We try to go it alone

Hebrews 10:25 says “Let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another.” I know how valuable the support, encouragement and friendship I have received has been, and continues to be. In the last few weeks I have been dealing with some tough stuff, & one of the guys in my small group without knowing anything texted to ask how I was doing. We need each other; we were designed for relationship, & when we are not walking alongside others we can get picked off so much more easily.

4. We try to be overconfident

1 Corinthians 10:12 challenges us to check ourselves; “If you think you are standing strong, be careful not to fall.” I have always been told that my greatest strength is also my greatest weakness, and if you are anything like me, you know what it is to be pushing forward and starting to get somewhere when you get pulled up short & fall flat on your face because you got overconfident.

And this is why this 7th principle is so important.

Reserve a daily time with God for self-examination, Bible reading and prayer in order to know God and His will for my life and gain the power to follow His will.

Jesus recognised that it was human nature to fall back and that we all need to put in place some safeguards against this. He said to his own disciples: “Watch & pray, so that you will not fall back into temptation, for the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.” Taking time out each day to examine ourselves, not because we have to but because we want to is a great way to start this. But how do you use your time out with God? How about trying the following:

Firstly learn to examine ourselves honestly. Ask yourself:

  1. What physical symptoms do you have? Sometimes when we say we are being really tempted and struggling, we just need an early night!
  2. What emotional symptoms do you have? Try doing a HEART check – ask yourself how you feel, e.g. are you: H: Hurting? E: Exhausted? A: Angry? R: Resenting? T: Tense?
  3. What relational symptoms do you have? Do we have any relational conflicts going on?
  4. What spiritual symptoms do you have? Am I relying on myself or God?

Secondly, learn to be honest about when it’s best to examine ourselves? Immediately something happens? Every morning/evening? Once a week? Special occasions?

Thirdly, think about how we examine ourselves. Taking time to meditate is a good start – not the emptying of our mind as some meditation techniques suggest but rather the focusing and consideration on something. On God. On the Bible. On our experiences.

I find when it comes to meditation, a great tool is the “stronghold buster” taught on the Freedom In Christ Discipleship course. To spot the things behind our repeating patterns, take a structured approach to repentance.  Try using the following formula: 

“I forgive……who did <be specific> to me……that made me feel……”

If you write out this phrase, and use it (or something very similar) for a number of things you can identify, perhaps through working the 4th Step Personal Inventory, a pattern. Maybe a repeated phrase, word or feeling starts to reveal something we believe about ourselves that isn’t true, and the lie gets exposed. Once the lie has been exposed, we can research what the Bible has to say about the truth, and as we discover the truth, the truth set’s us free.

What patterns of behaviour are you stuck in? Will you decide to do something about it today?

05 December 2011 ~ 0 Comments

Life’s Healing Choices: Evaluate My Relationships

Our next principle on our road to recovery should carry a health warning! “This might hurt” was how Alex Sayer introduced it when she developed this principle at the end of October. As she pointed out, relational repair work is never easy, and this whole principle is all about challenging us to:

Evaluate all my relationships. Offer forgiveness to those who have hurt me and make amends for any harm I’ve done to others, except when to do so would harm them or others.

This is based upon Matthew 5v7 & 9: “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy…Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.” In other words the challenge before us is to be the one who looks honestly at themself and recognises where things need to get sorted out and then takes the initiative to sort it out. So this step is about helping us to do just that, and to begin with we have to ask ourselves:

1: Why should we forgive those who have hurt us?

There’s a simple answer to that. Or should I say three!

  • Because we have been forgiven a debt we can never repay, meaning that to forgive is not a nice idea, it’s a command! How can we accept forgiveness if we are not willing to forgive others?
  • Because resentment simply doesn’t work! It ends up hurting us more than the other person!
  • Because WE will need forgiveness in the future, or at least, if you are anything like me! We all mess up, and so we will all need to be forgiven in the future, so if we won’t forgive, how can we accept it?

2: OK, so how do I go about forgiving others?

Once we realise that we need to forgive, how do we go about doing it? How do we go about getting rid of the pain?

  • Reveal: we need to admit the pain. I found Alex really helpful on this, when she was very honest and admitted what we are all afraid to admit; that the deepest hurts are often caused by those closest to us. So do we “repress it or confess it?” after all, there’s no “closure without disclosure”
  • Release: we need to release those who have hurt us from our hook, and start to travel lighter. At the end of the day, we have to make the choice!
  • Replace: if we can reveal our pain to ourselves, and the release that person from our hook, then we need to take the third step and replace the pain with peace. At the end of the day, we may let the person off our hook, but realising that they are not of God’s hook, that they will need to face his justice can allow us to do just that – and move on with our life

3: But sometimes we know it was us who messed up, and as we seek freedom it can mean that we realise it’s us who need to make amends

As Christians, we often neglect the importance of “walking in repentance.” Sometimes, putting things right means we have to live with the consequences of what we did wrong, but if we are to refocus on building a new life based on freedom, wholeness and happiness then we have to recognise that unresolved hurts establish roots, and so it’s vital we make amends. This needs careful consideration though, as sometimes making amends can cause serious damage to either ourselves, or others; taking time to plan is therefore vital. So let’s:

  • Make a list, and be honest with ourselves
  • Pick the right time
  • Weigh up the impacts
  • Approach it with the right attitude

But don’t forget; we can only make amends for those things we are responsible for! We can’t make amends for things that were not our responsibility…

To listen to this message preached on 30th Oct 2011, click here to go to LFM downloads

28 November 2011 ~ 0 Comments

Life’s Healing Choices: Voluntarily Submit To God

 

Never surrender! Never give up! How many times do we hear these things in our society today? And yet, our next principle on our road to recovery seems to be asking us to do just that:

Voluntarily submit to every change that God wants to make in my life and humbly ask him to remove all my character defects

This is based upon Matthew 5v6: “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.”

Now if we understand the meaning of righteousness to be “right standing with God” or to put it another way “right living”, then we have to start to ask ourselves whether we really desire such things. Do we really hunger and thirst to live right, to be right? How much do we really want it.

So we have two problems – voluntarily submitting to God and really wanting to have our lives right. Why is this? Because when we are honest, we all have character defects that hold us back.

1: Where do these character defects come from?

  • Biological: my chromosomes. We inherit certain defects from our family DNA, and these can make us predisposed to certain weaknesses in our character
  • Sociological: my circumstances. We inherit certain behavioural characteristics from our upbringing, social groups etc which also set up patterns of behaviour in our lives
  • Theological: my choices. We al make choices about what we think, believe and do, and when we make repeated choices about aspects of what we think/believe, we develop habits in our character

2: Why is it so hard to change these defects in my life?

  • Because I have had them for a long time – and we don’t change overnight
  • Because they have become my identity – and I believe that’s “just the way I am”
  • Because we like the reward – all defects have a payoff (attention, control etc)
  • Because Satan discourages me – just as we try to move forward, we get a whisper in our ear that reminds us we are wasting our time trying to change

3: So how do I cooperate with God’s change process in my life?

Romans 12:2 says: “Don’t copy the behaviour & pattern of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.” The way we think is like our autopilot, and so fighting the autopilot can be a fruitless pursuit. We need to refocus – reprogram – our autopilot, and so here are 7 steps that may be useful to help us refocus the way we think:

  1. Focus on changing one defect at a time: Proverbs 17:24
  2. Focus on victory one day at a time: Matthew 6:11
  3. Focus on God’s power not my will-power: Philippians 4:13
  4. Focus on what I want, not on what I don’t want: Philippians 4:8                  
  5. Focus on doing good, not feeling good: Galatians 5:16
  6. Focus on people who can help me, not hinder me: 1 Corinthians 15:33
  7. Focus on progress, not perfection: Philippians 3:13-14

Will you choose to submit to God’s work in your life to change the character defects we live with?.

To listen to this message preached on 23rd Oct 2011, click here to go to LFM downloads

21 November 2011 ~ 0 Comments

Life’s Healing Choices: Openly Examine Myself

Our next principle on our road to recovery is to:

Openly examine and confess my faults to myself, to God and to someone I trust

This is based upon Matthew 5v8: “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.”

The idea of coming clean can seem a really scary prospect! But if we really want to find freedom, and become unstuck, then somewhere along our road to recovery we have to choose the courageous step of coming clean. This principle therefore has to do with cleaning up the past, letting go of guilt, gaining a clear conscience, learning to live guilt free and the way God wants us to live. Wow! How much do we want that? That’s why this is probably best described as the housekeeping step.

The truth is, none of us is faultless. We all have sins, we’ve all made mistakes. So we all have regrets. We all have remorse. We all have things we wish we could turn back the clock on and say, “I wish I would have done that differently,” but you didn’t. So you feel bad about it, feel guilty about it, carry it with you. As a result we carry guilt around—sometimes consciously, but most of the time unconsciously. There are a lot of ways you react in life that are caused by unconscious guilt, and so let us consider:

1: The reason for taking this step is because of what guilt does to us

  • Guilt destroys our confidence
  • Guilt absolutely damages our relationships
  • Guilt keeps me stuck in the past

2: How do I take this step?

  • Take a personal moral inventory.

Psalm 139:23–24 says“Search me O God, and know my heart. Test my thoughts, point out anything you find in me that makes you sad.” We have ways that can help you do this, and if you would like help with this, get in touch!

  • Accept responsibility for my faults

Proverbs 20:27 says “The Lord gave us a mind and a conscience. We cannot hide from ourselves.”

  • Ask God for forgiveness

1 John 1:9 says “If we freely admit that we have sinned we find God utterly reliable. He forgives our sin and makes us thoroughly clean from all that is evil.”

  • Admit my faults to another person

James 5:16 says “Admit your faults, to one another and pray for each other so that you may be healed.”

The idea of telling someone else is a really scary prospect, so here is some advice about who do you tell:

  1. Somebody you trust. Somebody who can keep a confidence, who is not a gossip and who has a reputation for keeping a confidence.
  2. Somebody who understands the value of what you’re doing.
  3. Somebody who is mature enough that they are not going to be shocked.
  4. Somebody who knows the Lord well enough that they can reflect His forgiveness to you.

If we really want to be free, then as part of a safe place and a loving family we can begin to come clean and allow God to set us free.

To listen to this message preached on 16th Oct 2011, click here to go to LFM downloads

14 November 2011 ~ 0 Comments

Life’s Healing Choices: Consciously Choose God

Our next principle on our road to recovery is to:

Consciously choose to commit all my life and will to Christ’s care and control.

This is based upon Matthew 5v5: “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.”

How many of want to be meek? Most of us associate meekness with weakness in our society, and so this seems to be the last thing we would want to do. But in this session, David Ramm unpacked a fantastic insight into what it means to really be meek. Did you know that only two people in the Bible are described as meek? These were Jesus & Moses, probably two of the most inspirational leaders the world has ever seen.

To understand then what being meek meant to the Greeks, meekness was the middle ground between fits of anger and being completely timid and docile – Aristotle said it was the absence of excessive anger. But they also used it to describe a soothing medicine, a refreshing wind or a horse that had been tamed. These three things all had something in common: all of these things have been harnessed for good. So perhaps a better description of being meek is:

Power under control

Suddenly, many of us become a lot more interested in being meek! And with that in mind, we can start to work through this principle and ask ourselves:

1: What stops me from taking this step?

  • Pride stops me from admitting I need help. (Proverbs 18:12:
  • Guilt keeps me from taking this step (Psalm 40:13:
  • Fear scares me from taking this step (John 8:32:
  • Worry prevents me from taking this step (Philippians 1:6:
  • Doubt makes me hold back from starting this step (Luke 8:50

 

2: How do I take this step?

  • Accept Jesus Christ as my higher power
  • Accept God’s word as my standard for living
  • Accept God’s will as my strategy for life
  • Accept God’s power as my strength

As we choose to commit all of our lives into the care of Jesus Christ, we suddenly start to understand what it really means to know power under control

To listen to this message preached on 9th Oct 2011, click here to go to LFM downloads

07 November 2011 ~ 4 Comments

Life’s Healing Choices: Earnestly Believe God

Are you someone who quickly jumps to the wrong conclusions and assume the worst? Things are often different to the way we think or imagine them to be.

Our second principle is to “Earnestly believe that God exists, that I matter to him and that he has the power to help me recover.”

It draws from the Beatitude found in Matthew 5:4 that “blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted”. In other words, blessed are those who feel that they have lost everything, because it is only when we recognise our pain, and our need for God to comfort us/set us free that we can begin to move forward. That’s why this is often called “The “HOPE” step!”

In order to take this hope step, there are three things we need to do.

1. Acknowledge God’s existence

Hebrews 11:6 says “Anyone who comes to God must believe he exists & rewards those who earnestly seek him.” In today’s post-modern, global community there are so many voices competing to be heard that make faith in a higher power (Jesus Christ) seem to be something that only weak people do. Belief in a higher power can be whatever you want it to be, but claim this to be Jesus Christ and faith is placed alongside belief in Father Christmas, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy.

Right from the early days of Christian faith, there has been a concerted attempt to undermine the historicity, the evidential factual basis for the existence of God. Space here doesn’t permit a lengthy discussion, but I simply want to nail my colours to the mast and say I believe that Christianity stands the test of examination. I will happily debate with anyone who wants to discuss this!

2. Understand God’s Character

Many of us however do accept the existence of a higher power, and are even ready to accept that this is Jesus Christ. The problem is that for many of us, it is knowing what this higher power is actually like that causes us to struggle to trust.

Colossians 1:15 says that “Christ is the image of an invisible God.” So if we want to know what God is like, let us consider what Jesus is like, because until we know how can we trust him? The Bible tells us that:

  • God knows about my situation

Psalm 56:8 (NLT) says: “You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.” We may think nobody knows what we are going through, or can understand what happened…God does.

  • God cares about my situation

Psalm 103:14 (NLT) says: “For he knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust.” God loves you & wants to be what you have never had

  • God can change my situation (and me!)

Luke 18:27 says: “What is impossible for man is possible with God.” Jesus has the power to change you and your situation

3. Accept God’s Offer To Help

Past problems cause us to become stuck in the ruts, which means we often end up spending more time looking back than forwards. We end up being distracted, and trapped in repeating patterns of behaviour. If God knows us, cares about us and can change the situation, then we need to make a choice of whether we are willing to let him – or not?

To listen to this message, click here to go to LFM Downloads

31 October 2011 ~ 1 Comment

Life’s Healing Choices: Realise I’m Not God

And people say I get excited! When was the last time you saw real passion like Steve Balmer at Microsoft? I don’t know about you but it’s pretty rare to see passion like that in church!

The thing is I guess, many of us don’t feel as if we have anything to get excited about! We just wish things weren’t this way….

This series is all about helping us to know the freedom that Jesus Christ won for us on the cross. When Jesus died and rose again, he didn’t just break the power of death, he also broke the power of sin and as Free Methodists with a Wesleyan heritage, we believe that “all people can be free from the power of sin.” The first principle then on our road to recovery is to:

Realise that I’m not God. To admit I am powerless to control my tendency to do the wrong thing and that my life is unmanageable.

This is based upon Matthew 5v3: “God blesses those who are poor and realise their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.” (NLT) – if we really want to recover and know true freedom then we have to realise we need God! But this is easier said than done in today’s society when we are taught that we have the power to do everything our self, and don’t need anyone else! So let us ask 4 questions:

1: What is the cause of my problem?

Quite simply, I am! I don’t mean I am responsible for your problems (!), but I am at the root of MY problems, just as you are at the root of yours! Even the Apostle Paul recognised this in Romans 7:15 when he wrote: “I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate.”
This is because our basic problem is our sinful nature, which we inherited from The Fall; like Adam & Eve, we don’t want anyone else to be in control of our life, we want to play God!

2: How do we try to play God?

• We Try to Control Our Image – we don’t want people to see the real us
• We Try to Control Other People – we all want our own way
• We Try to Control Problems – we say I can handle it, it’s not really a problem. I can stop anytime I want
• We Try to Control Our Pain – we develop coping mechanisms to live with the pain

3: What are the results of playing God?

In short, we end up battling fear, frustration, fatigue & failure – as fast as we try and batter down one thing another raises it’s head!

4: So what is the cure?

• Admit I am powerless to change my past. Yes it hurt. Yes I remember it. Yes I am powerless to change it
• Admit I am powerless to control other people. Do I try and manipulate people? I am responsible for my own actions
• Admit I am powerless to cope with my harmful habits, behaviours and actions. At the end of the day, good intentions are not enough! God wants me to make the changes in my life.

James 4:6 says: “He gives us even more grace to stand against such evil desires. As the Scriptures say, ‘God opposes the proud but favours the humble.’”

I wonder: will you take the decision to be honest about your struggles? Will you choose to step out of denial and towards freedom?

To listen to this message preached on 25th Sept 2011, click here to go to LFM downloads