Assumptions

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elong - Assumptions #1

 

OpeningScripture: John 4:3-9

Spiritual Growth Challenge: Recognize Shame and Familiarity

Spiritual Growth - The Word, Worship, Prayer, Living Generously

 

In this series, Belong, we want to quit looking at people through the lenses of shame and familiarity. Maybe we are so familiar with someone we don’t see what they could be famous for.

If there is anything that keeps people from coming to Christ and church, it is shame.

 

Our assumptions occur because we judge the surface but don’t love them enough to find the source. The source of their pain, actions, poverty, addiction.

 

John4:3-9

he left Judea and departed again for Galilee. And he had to pass through Samaria. So he came to a town ofSamaria called Sychar, near the field that Jacob had given to his sonJoseph.Jacob's well was there; so Jesus, wearied as he was from his journey, was sitting beside the well. It was about the sixth hour.

A woman from Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.” (For his disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.) The Samaritan woman said to him, “How is it that you, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a woman ofSamaria?” 

 

With just 4 words, “Give me a drink,” Jesus opened the door for a person incarcerated by her past to step into her “new image.”

 

WhenJesus asked her for a drink, He modeled empathy.To have empathy, you must be willing to step out of your world into their reality.

 

With Just 4 Words Jesus overcame:

Race

Culture

Gender

Economic

Superiority/Inferiority

Everything that is dividing us today, Jesus overcame with just 4 words.

 

HouseExample:

When people tell us about their house, we hear about their reality from our imaginary viewpoint. This shapes how we interpret what they are saying.

When you go to their house, you now have entered their reality.  We encounter for a moment their world physically, socially, culturally, digitally, financially, and emotionally what their existence always is.

The difference between the two is like looking at a picture of the ocean and scuba diving with sharks.

Why is entering their reality vital?

When you hear a story, it stirs up sympathy. When you have an experience, you encounter empathy.  

 

Empathy is God’s way to get us into someone’s reality to be His agents of change in the earth.

We are not just the Father's pathway to the earth; we are the "Father's Image" here on earth.

·      We are His pathway to the earth. God wants to use us.

·      We are alsoHis image on the earth. He wants people to see him through us.

 

What happens when my identity in the mirror doesn't look like the image of the Maker?

When this is the case, God gives us more than the immediate answer; He provides us with a promise.

When God said it, it was done; but the promise has a process.

 

The process of the promise is what develops us into the image Hesees. God believes in you so much. "He calls you finished before you have even started.”  

 

We must start trusting that the goodness of God is the process, not the promise. A promise on a foundation that can't sustain it is a curse.

We want success, but God wants significance.If God is not the center of it, you will never be satisfied with the success of it.  

 

We need to understand that God develops our strength and makes us into His likeness and image by giving us a promise rather than just an answer.        

When God gives us a promise, we are forced to move toward Him to step into it!

We learn how to exercise His power by walking through circumstances and conditions that are contrary to His will. This results in the ability to walk in empathy.            

 

Why is entering their reality vital?

Because it was the model, Jesus lived out for us. Jesus left his world and entered our reality. (John 1:1)

 

Hebrews 4:14 (New Living Translation)

14 So then, since we have a great High Priest who has entered heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to what we believe. 15 ThisHigh Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin. 16 So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.

 

When Jesus said, “Give me a drink,” Hewas not just stepping into her world; he was inviting her into his.

 

Revelation3:20 “

Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come into him and eat with him, and he with me.