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Posts Tagged ‘ANXIETY’

JESUS HEALS THE BROKEN HEARTED – SUNDAY 24TH NOVEMBER 2013,  10AM

Bible reading – Mark 5:1-20 – Amplified Bible.tag - born for more - portrait - pos_renamed_26541

1 They came to the other side of the sea to the region of the Gerasenes.

And as soon as He got out of the boat, there met Him out of the tombs a man [under the power] of an unclean spirit.

This man [a]continually lived among the tombs, and no one could subdue him any more, even with a chain;

For he had been bound often with shackles for the feet and [b]handcuffs, but the handcuffs of [light] chains he wrenched apart, and the shackles he rubbed and ground together and broke in pieces; and no one had strength enough to restrain or tame him.

Night and day among the tombs and on the mountains he was always [c]shrieking and screaming and [d]beating and bruising and [e]cutting himself with stones.

And when from a distance he saw Jesus, he ran and fell on his knees before Him in homage,

And crying out with a loud voice, he said, What have You to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? [What is there in common between us?] I [f]solemnly implore you by God, do not begin to torment me!

For Jesus was commanding, Come out of the man, you unclean spirit!

And He asked him, What is your name? He replied, My name is Legion, for we are many.

10 And he kept begging Him urgently not to send them [himself and the other demons] away out of that region.

11 Now a great herd of hogs was grazing there on the hillside.

12 And the demons begged Him, saying, Send us to the hogs, that we may go into them!

13 So He gave them permission. And the unclean spirits came out [of the man] and entered into the hogs; and the herd, numbering about 2,000, rushed headlong down the steep slope into the sea and were drowned in the sea.

14 The hog feeders ran away, and told [it] in the town and in the country. And [the people] came to see what it was that had taken place.

15 And they came to Jesus and looked intently and searchingly at the man who had been a demoniac, sitting there, clothed and in his right mind, [the same man] who had had the legion [of demons]; and they were [g]seized with alarm and struck with fear.

16 And those who had seen it related in full what had happened to the man possessed by demons and to the hogs.

17 And they began to beg [Jesus] to leave their neighbourhood.

18 And when He had stepped into the boat, the man who had been controlled by the unclean spirits kept begging Him that he might be with Him.

19 But Jesus refused to permit him, but said to him, Go home to your own [family and relatives and friends] and bring back word to them of how much the Lord has done for you, and [how He has] had sympathy for you and mercy on you.

20 And he departed and began to publicly proclaim in Decapolis [the region of the ten cities] how much Jesus had done for him, and all the people were astonished and marvelled.

 

Here is a man whose life has been taken from him. He’s existing but not really living. So often people all around us experience the traumatic effects of tragedy, pain and loss every day. They exist, but they don’t really live.

This man lived in the tombs. He was forced out of his normal home by his abhorrent behaviour. We can only imagine the events that led up to his rejection by the community. His behaviour became a liability for the community – why? Perhaps he suffered the agony of loss, his wife or children may have died from illness or accident. Perhaps his business went belly up and he has been tormented by the sense of failure and his shame at not being a provider for his family. Could his failures have been compounded by a condemning and critical father who goaded him all his life saying, “You’re a failure boy, you’ll never amount to anything.”

For some the worst nightmares can be fought through and they piece life back together again; but for so many others their mind is continuously filled with torment because of rejection, shame, anger, hatred, guilt, or depression. The thoughts just never let up, and like this poor wretched soul you find yourself alone, outcast or simply choosing to avoid people – it’s easier that way.

Today I’ve come to tell you Jesus is the answer! Jesus gives Hope! Today I will show you the way out of pain and brokenness. If life has knocked you around, I can help you today. If you’re a pretty whole person, listen up I want to empower you to help others around you to find what the world can never offer. PEACE.

He cut himself with stones. Today some people cut themselves. It’ a sign that they hate themselves. Self-hatred comes from a wrong picture on the inside of who you really are. Like the beautiful young girl who was in our church many years ago who looked in the mirror at herself and screamed, I hate you, you are so ugly” You see her dad wasn’t there for her and never gave her the indispensable value she was loved and precious for who she was.

Jesus heals the broken hearted. He can and will heal you today. He will touch your life and you can begin the journey to wholeness. Jesus brings hope. In an era when more people than ever in history are seeking out a psychologist or counsellor; where statistics show one in four will suffer depression in their lifetime; you need to know Jesus is the answer. For all our medical advancement, our vastly greater understanding of how the human brain works, more people than ever are suffering debilitating symptoms of stress, depression and anxiety.

Listen to some of the symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and tell me if you think this man suffered with this increasingly common complaint?

  1. Suicidal thoughts and feelings.
  2. Feeling alienated and alone.
  3. Anger and irritability.
  4. Depression and hopelessness.
  5. Feeling detached from others and emotionally numb.
  6. Loss of interest in life in general.

(from http://www.helpguide.org/mental/post_traumatic_stress_disorder_symptoms_treatment.htm)

Maybe you thought this man was just filled with demon spirits, a strange and exotic phenomenon that takes place in some faraway places. No, what we have come to understand is the spirit world is real and there are evil spirits that torment and plague people even right here in our own community. We don’t pay a lot of attention to demons in Australia but they are active and afflict people mostly in their minds with uncontrollable thoughts. Mostly in Australia we medicate, Jesus brought release and healing. Jesus heals the broken hearted. For example a young man came to John Mellor meeting last weekend who had been diagnosed with Schizophrenia and his prognosis was to be kept permanently in a lock down ward. Now after prayer he is living at home and living a happy and peaceful life.

You see there is a spirit realm and there is an enemy. He works on the mind, can also afflict the body and opposes you spiritually to try and keep you from connecting with Jesus.

Jesus offers peace and life. This what the bible says about your mind…

Luke 8:35

And [people] went out to see what had occurred, and they came to Jesus and found the man from whom the demons had gone out, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right (soundmind; and they were seized with alarm and fear.

2 Timothy 1:7
For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control. 

Jesus is the answer. He alone can bring hope and freedom. Medication can cover the symptoms but Jesus sets you free.

No matter how tormented you are, like this man you can run to Jesus. These demonic powers were not able to stop him coming to the one who has the answer. Though he was filled with these torturing spirits, he saw Jesus and came running towards Him and fell at His feet and worshipped.

This is the beginning of your answer – run to Jesus. You see Jesus knew about this man. He went seeking him out, He deliberately put ashore at this very place where this madman had his abode among the tombs.

Jesus knows your pain, He knows your heartache and He has come to seek and to save those who are lost. Here is your answer – Run to Jesus, and like this man desire to stay with Jesus. Jesus is not a pill you take to relieve symptoms and you go back to your normal life. Jesus has a new life for you. Your old life was killing you. It was filled with wrong believing, wrong values and wrong behaviour. It was how you lived and what you believed that put you in the mess you are in now. It’s time to come to Jesus and let Him redeem you and show you His abundant life of righteousness peace and joy.

You might be strong and whole this morning, but this message is still for you. WE need to go out and boldly proclaim that Jesus is the only answer. He is the only one that heals the broken hearted. Tamazepam doesn’t heal a broken heart, a bottle of scotch a day doesn’t heal a broken heart, only Jesus can do it! Look at this man’s end state… 15 And they came to Jesus and looked intently and searchingly at the man who had been a demoniac, sitting there, clothed and in his right mind, [the same man] who had had the legion [of demons]; and they were [g]seized with alarm and struck with fear.

Will you run to Jesus today?  Will you surrender your heart and mind to Jesus? Find a strong and Godly church that will lay hands on you and pray for you. Find a group of passionate Christians who will love you and pray for the power of God to touch your life. Find a church that has a reputation in your community for helping the broken and hurting people.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS.

1. Jesus dealt with demon spirits all the time. Why don’t we focus on their activity in our day and age?

2. Discuss how the thought life of an individual can be interrupted by the influence of demonic spirits. (2 Cor 10:5)

3.  Why do you think that stress depression and anxiety are so much more prevalent in our time than they were in past times?

4. This man’s turnaround was fast, dramatic and complete. Can Jesus do that today?

5. Is there also a steady healing process for many as they journey towards wholeness with Jesus?

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The AnswerSTRESS

Stress is all too prevalent in the world today. In spite of all the advancement in medicine, education and health advice we face massively escalating levels of stress induced ill health.

Do you feel the pressure of life gets too much for you at times? You’re not alone; many feel like it’s getting too much to bear. Mental Experts say that stress levels amongst the general population today are equivalent to mental patients in the 1950-60s! http://tinyurl.com/a89hua9

I notice so often on game shows where the contestant is about to win some big money, the show host always asks what will you do with the money if you win? – The answer is almost always – take a holiday!

Do you find yourself feeling anxiety to the point of being unhappy? Do you suffer from the results of stress such as heart palpitations, mouth ulcers, skin rashes, tension headaches, stomach ulcers, neck pain, bad backs and on and on it goes.

Depression is huge in our society. I want help you today – Jesus can be your answer today if depression plagues you. The statistics are clear: “This year [2010] alone 1,000,000 people in Australia will experience a depressive illness.” http://mraact.org.au/2010/06/black-dog-r…
“Depression is the third largest individual health problem in Australia after heart disease and stroke.” http://www.blackdogride.com.au/view/red-…

“About 6% of [Australian] people will experience a major depressive illness in their lifetime. 1 in 4 women and 1 in 8 men will experience some form of depression during their life.”  http://mindframe-media.powersites.com.au…

What is it about our fast paced world we live in, that we have no place to de-stress? We live in a peace free zone that does not enable the majority of us the ways to find the life and peace that we so desperately need? Come on – how many of you have daydreamed about living on some tropical island paradise and totally veging out?

A study in England from June 2012 found that among people under 65, nearly half of all ill health is mental illness (http://tinyurl.com/d6azuzf). Yet only a quarter of all those with mental illness are in treatment, compared with the vast majority of those with physical conditions.

I want to help you to find out today that Jesus is the answer for you.

Jesus is the answer to the stress and pressure you feel today.

The bible predicts this kind of experience in the last days:

Luk 21:26  Men swooning away or expiring with fear and dread and apprehension and expectation of the things that are coming on the world; for the [very] powers of the heavens will be shaken and caused to totter.

Jesus faced the most horrific levels of stress imaginable and the result was he sweat great drops of blood. Here’s the story:

Luk 22:41  And He withdrew from them about a stone’s throw and knelt down and prayed,

Luk 22:42  Saying, Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but [always] Yours be done.

Luk 22:43  And there appeared to Him an angel from heaven, strengthening Him in spirit.

Luk 22:44  And being in an agony [of mind], He prayed [all the] more earnestly and intently, and His sweat became like great clots of blood dropping down upon the ground.

(Hematidrosis (also called hematohidrosis) is a very rare condition in which a human sweats blood. It may occur when a person is suffering extreme levels of stress, for example, facing his or her own death.[1] Several historical references have been described; notably by Leonardo da Vinci: describing a soldier who sweated blood before battle, men unexpectedly given a death sentence, as well as descriptions in the Bible, that Jesus experienced hematidrosis when he was praying in the garden of Gethsemane (Luke 22:44). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hematidrosis )

The stress that Jesus felt was through his task of bearing the sins of all mankind on himself. Would he succeed as a man? (Being essentially fully God and fully man) Would he be able to complete the task?  The fear He faced and overcame, was whether He would fail or not in His mission; not to mention the weight of all the sin of mankind about to be placed on Him; and the inevitable separation from the Father for a time. A very big outcome rested on His being successful in this mission. Yours and my salvation depended on it! He carried our sins and sicknesses on His body on the cross (1Pe 2:24  He personally bore our sins in His [own] body on the tree [as on an altar and offered Himself on it], that we might die (cease to exist) to sin and live to righteousness. By His wounds you have been healed. (AMP))

The power of substitution.

All the way through the Old Testament God showed His acceptance of the substitute. God accepted the substitute of a lamb or a bullock as in offering to atone for or pay for the sins of a person who brought that animal to Gods altar of sacrifice. It was the innocent standing in the place of the guilty. Later Jesus became the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. Because he carried our sins we don’t have to bear the judgement of them. Only if a person has faith in Jesus Christ, then they can claim the substitutionary death of Jesus as applying to them. In the same manner Jesus also carried our sicknesses in His own body on the cross. Mat 8:17  And thus He fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah, He Himself took [in order to carry away] our weaknesses and infirmities and bore away our diseases.

Just as Jesus carried your sins and sickness on the cross, He also carried your stress and anxiety. By being so stressed and anxious Himself, He bore all the pains and stress and fear of failure that you will ever be faced with. In fact Isaiah tells us directly: Isa 53:5  But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our guilt and iniquities; the chastisement [needful to obtain] peace and well-being for us was upon Him, and with the stripes [that wounded] Him we are healed and made whole.

As a substitute for us, Jesus carried our stress and anxiety. The chastisement of our peace or the pain necessary to obtain our peace was given to Him. What He carried we don’t have to carry. Just as He carried our sins and He carried our sicknesses; so He also carried our stress and anxiety.

Through faith in Christ you can obtain the atonement of sins, the taking away of your sins. Through faith in Jesus Christ also you can receive healing for your infirmities. So then also in faith you can receive total peace in your mind and heart through Jesus Christ because he carried those things also. As our perfect substitute He paid the price for all that we need for complete salvation in our body soul and spirit. The healing of our minds or our soul is just as real as the healing of our body and heart. This life and this healing we have received is complete.

Do you know that Jesus knows your pain and stress levels intimately? He experienced all that you will ever experience and more. That is why He is compassionate and able to bring healing and life to you. Heb 4:15  For we do not have a High Priest Who is unable to understand and sympathize and have a shared feeling with our weaknesses and infirmities and liability to the assaults of temptation, but One Who has been tempted in every respect as we are, yet without sinning. Heb 4:16  Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God’s unmerited favour to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it]. Psa_94:19  In the multitude of my [anxious] thoughts within me, Your comforts cheer and delight my soul! (AMP)

So what does this answer look like? What is this peace that Jesus offers to us?

Here’s how the bible describes it: Php 4:6  Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition (definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God.

Php 4:7  And God’s peace [shall be yours, that tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and being content with its earthly lot of whatever sort that is, that peace] which transcends all understanding shall garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

What a beautiful picture of God’s help for you, that tranquil state of mind. It’s a kind of peace that will set up a protective wall around your life. It’s like a garrison around your heart and mind. It sounds awesome doesn’t it?

It’s obtained through faith; but let me share with you how to work with your faith to obtain real and lasting peace.

  1. Come to Jesus and see how big He is in comparison to your tiny problems. He created the whole universe and this world; isn’t  He big enough to take care of you?
  2. He is so vitally interested in you and loves you unreservedly, unconditionally. Luk 12:32  Do not be seized with alarm and struck with fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom!
  3. 1Pe 5:7  Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully. [Ps. 55:22.] What this means is; you throw over, to cast upon; your cares; it implies a quick flip or toss of the cares and anxieties onto Jesus. This is about how you think on your problems. It’s about applying your faith to this change of thinking….. you can think differently because you have evidence now from God’s word that He cares for you; so you can give the worry and anxiety and stress over to Him.
  4. Now thank Him for every good thing. Phil 4:6….. with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God. Thankfulness is very powerful in changing your thinking to receive God’s peace.

Reach out to Jesus today. Lean on Him with your mind and heart. Consider how much He loves you. He knows how to bring the answer to you. Jesus is the answer!

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