God will Rescue you- but you have to allow him…
Romans 8:13: “Whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
“One day, she came to a crossroads. It only felt natural to keep going, but she just didn’t want to. She wanted peace in her heart, she just wanted to fill that void in her life. Finally realizing that she just didn’t want to die.“
I’m going to tell you a story about a woman today; one with which you might be able to relate. She came to a crossroads and had to decide. So, pay attention to the details, because at the end I will ask you a question. You must know all the facts before you can answer. Are you ready? I once knew this lady; she struggled so much. She was born to two drug addicts, and they didn’t teach her much. All through life she tried, and she tried to fill that hole that she felt inside. As she grew older things would change, but only if she didn’t want them to remain the same.
God created everything.
The book of Genesis tells us the work of God’s creation. He was in love with his creation, but he didn’t have anyone to look after his work. Repeatedly in Genesis we read, “God saw that it was good.”, when speaking of his creation. When God made Adam, he created him in the likeness of himself. This is a special trait because it means God thought of mankind as very special. He wanted to have someone to care for his creation and to have fellowship with him. You might be asking, well what does that have to do with our lady in the story? You see she always believed God created everything, but she never knew just how special she was to God. She never could understand how great his love for mankind was.
Deception caused sin.
When God created mankind, he only had one rule. Genesis 2:16-17 tells us God instructed Adam not to eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil or he would surely die. God clearly laid out this first law for Adam and Eve, but unfortunately it wasn’t hard for them to fall for the deception of Satan. In Genesis 3 a conversation takes place between Eve and the serpent known as Satan. He asks her “did God really say you couldn’t eat from this tree? He doesn’t want you to be like him.” Eve gave in to this temptation and sin entered the world with this one lie causing the sting of death to fall in mankind. But this didn’t just cause death, it caused three kinds of death: we are born dead, we will die a physical death and we are subject to eternal death. See the woman in our story, she was mad because of death. She had lost someone she loved so very much, but without this understanding of death, she sank deeper into depression causing even more separation from God.
Deception makes you a slave.
The goal of the enemy is to keep us enslaved to sin which keeps us even further from God. If we are riddled with guilt, shame, and sin- it will cause our hearts to become hardened, and we will remain spiritually dead. The Bible tells us in Proverbs 28:14 “Blessed is the one who always trembles before God, but whoever hardens their heart falls into trouble.” This is how the enemy keeps us in bondage to sin. He keeps us enslaved to his lies so our hearts will become hardened to God’s promises. I was telling you the woman of our story sank into depression because she was hurt by the death of someone special in her life. It was the compounding of many years of lies that made her more susceptible to this attack from the enemy. Throughout her life she was hurt by so many people who were supposed to love her, and she had lost the only person she perceived to truly care for and love her. Her heart was so hard, she had lost all hope- enslavement to the enemy was all that remained. She woke up crying day after day for about 5 months straight. She had no energy to do the things she needed to do in life. Completely broken, she was spiritually dead and yearning for physical death as a way out.
God provides a way out.
You see, God is a patient and loving God- but he is also Holy and just. Because God cannot allow sin in his presence, and we have no way of correcting the sin nature that entered the world with Adam and Eve. In 2021 the CDC reported 12.3 million adults in the USA seriously thought about suicide. Of those 12.3 million, 48,000 took their own life. These people were so deceived by the enemy they saw no other way out than to take their own lives. But I am here to tell you, God does provide a way out. 1 Corinthians 10:13 tells us God does allow us to be tempted, but he will also provide a way out so we can endure the temptation. The woman of our story, she was constantly tempted by things of the world- but she never could stand firm. She hated herself and everything about her. She was like a feather blowing around in the wind. One day, she came to a crossroads. It only felt natural to keep going, but she just didn’t want to. She wanted peace in her heart, she just wanted to fill that void in her life. Finally realizing that she just didn’t want to die.
Something had to change.
For many years, the Israelites followed the Levitical Law– but this still wasn’t enough to atone for their sins. Since this wasn’t enough, God had bigger plans. Afterall, he is a patient God and desires a relationship with his creation. The Bible tells us in 2 Peter 3:9 “the Lord is not slow in keeping his promise…Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” So, he sent his son Jesus to atone for the sins of all mankind. The Bible tells us in John chapter 3 verse 16, “For God so loved the world he sent his only begotten son, that whosever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life.” Jesus died a horrific death on the cross to pay for all the sins of the world. But see, Jesus didn’t just die. He was crucified and three days later he rose up from the grave, alive. See, the woman in our story had come to know this fact when she was very young- but her heart was so hard, she was so tainted with the enemy’s lies that she couldn’t see the truth. She couldn’t see that she had worth and value in Jesus. She was spiritually dead.
Redemption in Jesus.
While Jesus did come to die to set us free, he doesn’t impose this upon anyone who is unwilling to accept him. God gave us the free will to make choices, but if we don’t choose Jesus, we will face an eternal separation from God. The Bible tells us in James chapter 1 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the Heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” Eternal separation from God means eternal separation from everything good that comes from God. But we don’t have to live that way. We can live in peace with God while we are here on Earth too by realizing we are sinful, and we need Jesus. This is where it gets good with the woman of our story. After she started to wake up crying for days on end, she began to fall to her face in the dark of her bedroom, in the wee hours of the morning crying out to God. Although it took some time and suffering, God answered those prayers. She slowly started to smile more with less tears appearing on her face than before, until one day they stopped. She started learning of God’s promises as they untangled all the lies she had believed for so long. Her faith became stronger because she rested on the promises of her Heavenly Father. She made a choice to follow Jesus and she didn’t look back. The Bible tells us in 2 Corinthians 5:17 “therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”
At the beginning of this message, I told you there would be a decision at the end. You have heard the story of a hurt and broken woman who found Jesus in the midst of her suffering and pain. Maybe you are here and hurting just like she was and maybe you are hurting worse. Today, you have heard how you can get rid of that pain and suffering. Jesus wants you to lay it all at his feet and experience the freedom only he can give, just like the woman in our story. You see, she found her way to Jesus, and she has experienced complete freedom. The Christian life isn’t easy by any means, but it sure is a lot better than the old way. You see, the woman in the story- she is special to me, because she is me and I am she. Will you shake off the deceptions of the enemy, laying your pain and hurt at Jesus feet- allowing him to heal you today? I encourage you to run to Jesus today!