Choice is an absolute must for quality relationships. Consequences for our choices are necessary to create a feedback loop that is rooted in reality. Learn how God wants to move us toward freedom and power to make choices that move us along a continuum of maturity.
Choice is an absolute must for quality relationships. Consequences for our choices are necessary to create a feedback loop that is rooted in reality. Learn how God wants to move us toward freedom and power to make choices that move us along a continuum of maturity.
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I am Josh Hallmark, and I want to thank you for listening to one of the oaks podcasts. Remember this message from Isaiah? Chapter 61 God takes the seeds of Brokenness and turns them in tow oaks of righteousness and that's you. Okay, all right, so we're in a syriza about boundaries, and I just want to read this verse to you. This says in Galatians 62 through five carry each other's burdens. That's really what you guys were helping us do this morning, and I really appreciate that. And it says in so doing, you feel Feel the law of Christ. If anyone thinks he's something when he's nothing, he deceives himself. Each one should test his own actions. You know, if you read the Book of Galatians, you see, the Galatians were actually having some strife within their church. They were they were having some issues with getting under some bad teaching. But also there was these issues where they were biting each other and devouring each other. They were jealous of one another. Paul mentions envy more than he mentions envy and jealousy a few times in this book, and he's talking here about being conceded. You know, he says, if anyone thinks he's something he had actually just mentioned that in Chapter five about not being conceded. He says Anybody thinks he's something when he's nothing. He deceives himself and um and it says each one should test his own actions. Then he can take pride in himself without comparing himself to others. Because what do we do? Often we compares up to other people, and that makes us settle in about where we are. We think if I can find somebody a little worse than me, you know a little worse off than me, then I could feel better about where I am, right, and then, you know, that's that's that's pride, right? And then sometimes we do exactly the opposite. We find somebody that's better than us, and that's reason enough for us to think we have nothing offer, cause there's always somebody doing it better, but it's neither. We should compare our own. We should test our own actions and then we can take pride in ourselves and hopefully if we test our says we're getting better and better. We're getting stronger and stronger, and when that when we actually are getting stronger started, say the issue of boundaries here. If we're getting better and better bandage, we can, like, take pride in our seven. That's a good kind of pride, by the way. Oh, I'm doing better. This is not where I was last year. I'm doing better. This is good and it actually creates momentum and create some confidence. And so anyway, But then Paul and finishes by say, Okay, we carry each other's burdens. But at the end of the day, we should also recognize that God has given each one of us a load to bear, and we want to carry our own load. And what do we learn? That load was like. If if the burden is like a boulder, what is the load like? Greek Word is a backpack, right? We gotta own within our own backpack. Our attitudes, our reactions, are stuff are who loop what's inside our hula hoops. So there's where again. So a boundary is where I end where another person begins, right may say something real quick. Um, what we're looking for is the truth about how God has set things up, Jesus said. You'll know the truth and the truth will make you free. The truth is his word. But we've learned that word actually means a reality. You'll know reality the way things really are, and that will set you free. And this is actually something that God wants us to get us to his freedom Because freedom is absolutely required for us to have relationships. Why don't you understand this foundational for us to have freedom? God wants us to be free. Not so that we can be free and have our own little hula hoop that we're doing our own little thing in. But he actually wants us to be free so that we can relate to one another with that freedom. You guys understand You can't have love without freedom. This is so foundational. You remember in the garden before sand enter the picture. God gave a choice. He put freedom is embedded from the beginning because God is looking for relationship. And so anyway, it's really we We want to get to a place of freedom. So anyway, so what we learned last week real quick is where I end. It's for the other begins. Last week we learned that boundaries protect treasure. We see that there's something that's worth protecting on the inside of us. Remember, we want to protect our pearls from the swine, if you will. And there's a treasure. You guys remember this. You're the goose that lays the golden egg right, and there's you There's the picture of you. And, uh, that is an actual selfie that I pulled from one of your ah social media accounts last week we talked about how to start creating these boundaries to protect the golden eggs that we were talking about and we talked about. Truth is a way that protects it, talking about the truth of God's word in this sense that we realize that the Lord says, Hey, don't don't do that when he says Don't do that, That actually creates a barrier for us to go into something that's going to hurt us if you're the toddler and God's truth is the fence and he knows the wolf is on the other side. The fence is there to keep you from getting your lunch, eating right? Actually, yourself eaten. So God's word actually provides a offense around us, and it's a good thing, right? We would do well. Remember that verse where Josh was leading the people of Israel into the new land. He said, Look, I'm giving you these commands so that will go well with you. And so you'll succeed. That's what truth does. And that's what God's word. We also learned that words are how we create boundaries. Stop. No, I don't like that. Remember that? Okay, distance is something we learned last week. Sometimes we need to take a step back, and that actually enables. Our goal is not to separate from one another, but it can be two separate from one another for a time. I just need to get a little space, cause you're really getting on my nerves right now. And I like you. You're tracking with me. But my goal was restored Relationship. But I need to manage me right now. I'm you know, I'm really ill right now. I'm you know, I've been up for 72 hours and I've got to get a little distance and a little sleep. And but my goal is to come back and, you know, for there to be relationship restored the ship time was sort of like that. You know, we sometimes we need to take a little time apart. Talked about snoozing on Facebook. So one more thing that we talked about last week that helps us build boundaries. Our rituals, that is, like the ritual of the family eating together. We mentioned that there might be other Richard. Do you guys have some stuff that you do every now, everyone? Some, uh, some kind of, uh, way where some regularity. That's the word. I was looking for, something that you do with some regularity that you know, It helps create boundaries. Like if your family is something that you're part of the treasure, one to protect or maybe have taco Tuesday every Tuesday. And that is creating a moment where you're protecting that connection that treasure. You know, one thing I mentioned to is saying, Hey will be a church. I'm gonna be there because it helps create that wall between me in the devil. Here's the deal, the wall between us and the devil or the boundaries between us and the devil because he is the wolf that would like to get in our back fans. Defense does not have to be that thin, right? We want to build that sucker thick. Um, so that we Ah, so that we're, uh Yeah. Okay, so I'm trying to get onto what I want to talk about, so time. All right. Today here's what I want to talk about. And ah, this is an idea of freedom and consequences. And what did I say about freedom Already? Freedom is required. God wants us to walk in freedom. Look, if you're saying yes to things that you don't really say yes to, that is not freedom that slavery. And it's not worth anything. By the way, your yes, your yes, it's so valuable to God. And it's valuable relationships. If you say yes to somebody, just so that you won't offend them, or so that they won't have their feelings hurt because your southern and that's what Southerners do. You might be complying on the outside, but you will not have authentic relationship with that person because it is built on a foundation that's faulty, is built on fear is not built on love. You guys tracking with me it goes the same with your relationships with your demanding parent. It may be, is really up in your business and you haven't left and Clift. I'm just saying it's you might really, really be afraid of hurting someone's feelings. I was reading the book. So the book that ah, that a lot of this stuff comes from is called Maybe one, I guess, Boundaries. Yes. This is a great book. Give the audio book if you're not a reader and just listen to, um, this is what you're saying Thank you. He was saying There's a difference and hurting someone and harming someone. I thought that was a really, really good thing. We're afraid of hurting other people's feelings. That's not sometimes our decisions. That's protecting our boundaries. It might actually hurt somebody a little bit, right, And so anyway, it might hurt somebody to get news about something right that we don't like. We don't like to have our feelings hurt. Ever. Do we? That's not good, but that's not the same as us being harmed. Where s Oh, you want to injure someone's person through your boundaries? That's not it. It's more about protecting your treasure, right? And if you just do something out of fear, then that's not really worth anything. You guys tracking with me there. So we wanted to be worth something, are? Yes, to be yes, man. Wouldn't it be cool if somebody tells you? Yes. And you know that there yes, is yes. So you really feel chosen because of that? Yes. It gives it power. Gives it integrity. You understand what I'm saying? It gives it authenticity. So anyway, let's talk about this for just a minute. Okay? So God wants to move us from the place of being a victim to the place of being powerful. And to me, this is illustrated very, very well with the Children of Israel. You guys know that the Children of Israel, actually in slavery for 400 years they moved the Egypt. They multiplied greatly while they were there. But the Egyptians did not like after Joseph, after the time of Joseph in the time of Faeroe says there were raised up another Faeroe who knew not Joseph. He did not have value for Joseph. And the Israel became slaves for 400 years. Let me tell you something. When you're in slavery, this means that you are not powerful from the inside. But everything is chosen for you. It's sort of like being in prison. Everything your government is external to me, this is polar opposite From what the Lord is trying to do inside of us. Everything has chosen for you what you wear when you goto work. When you eat your opportunities for the bathroom, you know, in the more strict that you know and there's maybe a sliding scale in terms of, you know, the slavery that they were under. But you remember, at its peak, it got more and more oppressive for Israel. Remember, they had to do twice the work with half the material. You understand saying so. The demand, the oppression that this is what slavery does is it brings oppression. But here's the thing. God took Israel out of Egypt. He moved them through the desert and his destination was a land that they owned. Do you see? That's a big difference. They go from being in a place where they are owned to them, moving into a land where they actually have, say, and they have power. Now watch this. This is really interesting. God attempted to bring a people out of Egypt and change them into a free people in one generation. That's amazing, because it's not just Egypt that they were fighting. But it was it was not them. In Egypt, it was Egypt in them. And this is exactly what God is trying to get out of you. He It's one thing for you to be born again and brought out of Egypt. But it's another thing for the Lord of you to allow the Lord to deliver Egypt out of you. And this is what he wants. He wants to make you a free person. A free person is a person that is able to so and reap somebody that is able to plant something and then reap a harvest. Now watch this. When? When? When the Children of Israel were making this transition from Egypt into free land, there was the desert. Do you guys remember what God did for them during that time? In terms of provisions, how did they eat? There was manna that came from heaven and their shoes didn't wear out. So this is my thought is that this was a burden. It was too big for them to bear alone, right? It was, you know, bear one another's boulders. This was a boulder for Egypt. I'm sorry. A Boulder for Israel to get out of Egypt and get to the Promised land. And so the Lord for 40 years didn't let their shoes wear out. And he did not, uh, he provided food for the man. Every morning they would go out and collect Mana Mana means what is it? That's funny, isn't because What is this? This angel food cake? It's probably what it was. Angels would bring it down. They would come collect it and they would eat it. They didn't do anything for they just collected it and ate it. And this was the Lord helping them transition from out of slavery and victimhood into a season of power and choice. Now watch this. This is crazy. Have you ever seen this before? This is Joshua, Chapter five. Once they stepped in to the Promised land. The Bible says the mana stop. The day after they ate this food from the land, they started eating food from the new land they were in and the man to stop. There was no longer any manna for the Israelites. I want you to understand something. God will give you a hand up. Okay? But he will not give you a hand out. He was helping them transition, but his ultimate And it my extended for 40 years. Okay, so God is the one that gets to choose that period of time. But ultimately, what he's trying to do. Let's keep reading. There was no longer any man up for the Israel ICTs, but they ate the produce of Canaan. So what happened is there was a transition period where they went from having their food just provided for them. To them actually being participants with freedom and power and consequences. So if they decided to go so corn, what came up for them? They ate off the land so they begin to work. You guys, this is a paradigm of power and freedom. This is amazing. This is amazing. That God was This is what he was bringing to God provided for them in two ways. Number one he provided for them in the things that they said number twos. He provided them from the spoils of what they conquered. And I think that this is the paradigm of the promised land. The Lord wants you to so and the things that you overcome, he wants you to reap a harvest from that. Some of you guys have challenges that stand before you and your family line and things like that, and you go punch the devil in the mouth and God gives you spoils from that to live on to celebrate toe walk in. But also, the Lord wants you to have freedom so that you can so and reap that sowing and reaping. We think of that in a bad context, but it's actually a That's a beautiful thing. Farmers have been doing this for thousands of years, right? But we want to soem or than just corn, right? What does it say in Galatians? Chapter six, Verse seven. This is funny because Paul is trying to get them out from under the yoke of slavery, and this is terms that he uses and enter yoke of grace and freedom. Be not deceived, though, he said, Don't use your freedom to do bad. Were is what he's saying. Be not deceived. God is not mocked for whatever a man cellos that he also rapes. And so what Paul is saying here is don't so to the flesh things of the flesh that he mentions when he mentions his jealousy. That's the work of the flesh. Another is somebody that causes trouble that stirs up trouble. That's the work of the flesh, she saying. Don't do that. Another one is drunkenness. Just don't do that in morality. Don't do that, he says, because if you do that, you're gonna wreak destruction. People that do that, we'll have no inheritance in the kingdom of God. But he's like instead, Why don't you work on the fruit of the spirit, which is love, George? This is the chapter love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, kindness and was the last one. Self control is our boundaries through the spirit, right? And so Paul is saying, Hey, guys used this freedom that you have, we have freedom. Did you know that? It said, Actually, I'm about to get to about to show you God is moving them from slavery to freedom. But you know, Israel. But see, this is also what he's trying to do for us. Instead of being a slave to Egypt, we've actually been slaves to sin. But now we're but coming into free and we're using our friend. He wants us to move from a paradigm of victimhood to being powerful for us to understand that God gives us freedom. So two points real quick, and I'm about to land the plane. Okay, Number one, this is these. There's more foundations for boundaries. Number one is that God gives us freedom. And this is what Paul says in the chapter, right before the one I just read to you. It is for freedom that Christ has set us free stand firm. Then you do not let yourself to be a burden again by yoke of slavery. So God is giving us freedom. And this is like this is good news. This is one of the most empowering things that you could ever hear is there? And you could decide whose house you wanna paint news How she don't want paint or whose kitchen you do wanna paint and whose you don't? There's like freedom. Guys. I used to think that God was a taskmaster. This is what I thought about him. And then I could never please him. And then I realized, Oh, now sometimes the Lord tells me Hey, don't go that way. You need to go this way. Sometimes I can't tell you how many times I've prayed about something in my life. I felt over says, Well, what do you want to do? There's definitely time. She's like Woo. Sometimes he gives me not a red light. But, uh, you like, you know, proceed with caution. Sometimes I feel like the green lights going either direction. God is not trying to control you, by the way, has a purpose and a destiny for your life. But freedom is one of the earmarks of a Christian, you guys, because when we come from freedom, what is it? How does that enable relationships? We'll see when we have freedom in our life. Then we choose one another. That's love when we choose one another is love. And that is the biggest thing, isn't it? This takes us back to the first command, right? The love God and the second love each other. So God wants us toe walk in freedom. God wants you to be free from control. He wants you to be free from control because control is not rooted in love. It's rooted in fear. Usually people that are trying to control you are afraid about something. But love actually gives us the ability our freedom rather gives us the ability to be kind of who we are. So let me talk about the flip side of this, and this is kind of where I wanted to get today. So So you got that right. God gives me freedom. Okay. Number two is, though. God wants me to give others freedom. So this is this is kind of flip side of boundaries. This is us saying that we honor other people's boundaries. So God wants us to have freedom. We create banners, our freedom. We protect ourselves with that freedom. But God also wants us to be able to give other people freedom. When you do this, this is going to increase the quality of your relationships. Because when you give somebody else freedom without controlling them, you actually position them to build a love you. Because when they say yes, it's yes. So how do we do that? How do we give others freedom? God gives us freedom. Have you ever felt like God just made you do something? Every now and then, right, he's like, train. Get out, away, right? Or he's like, you better step through that right now. But usually That's not how he operates. He's a good dad, right? He's gonna put you on the front of the train if you're trying, you know. But generally speaking, the Lord gives us a tremendous amount of freedom. I think that after I started realizing this about God told you guys, I went to use with a mission while William in 1999. And, um And when I was there, I got this revelation that God liked me. I got this revelation that he was nice and I got this revelation that he want to be my friend. But I had a choice in it that he was not making me. And you know what it did for May? It didn't for, like, a better terms. It made me want to love him more. It made me want to pursue him or because I felt like I had freedom to do what I wanted. And I wanted to choose him. Right. So if God gives us freedom, then we want to extend that to other people. When you stand across the are not, you know, across the way when you're getting married to somebody else or you dream of getting married somebody else. Do you want them toe want you or do you want them to think couldn't do any better? Or I kind of got suckered into this or pushed into this. You know, some people get married because they have a controlling other partner that locks them in the relationships. And some of you guys may have been in relationships like that before that were controlling. You could not get out of it. That's not real relationship. That's something else. But when we choose this funny cause, the Lord's really so I thought I was supposed to marry somebody else. This is a whole different story. I'm so I don't have time to hotel the whole thing. I tell you the whole thing. Some other time I thought God told me to marry somebody else, and I was. I weighed about four years on it, and then finally I met this girl named Ginger Grayson who have but was pretty awesome. She was a mystery to make. She didn't talk much, you know. I talk a lot. She was She was a mystery to me, and I was like, I really liked her and ah, there's a guy There's mentor me at the time, and he was like, Man, maybe it's the Lord, you know, I don't know about this other girl, you know, um, who you met one time. And it was this weird. You know, sometimes we're a little too weird. Followed Jesus, but, uh, sometimes that we should be weird, but anyway, um, But I remember telling the Lord this was kind of my This was my mom. I said, Lord, I'm worried that other girl for you want me to you. But if you give me a choice, I choose Ginger Grayson. Now, fast forward. Well, this is one of the reasons that freedom is so powerful. Fast forward. I did get the Lord's Okay, by the way, and I went through, I had a lot of people checks because sometimes it's tricky to here from God about relationships. Anyway, that's just my experience talking with other people. Because sometimes did God tell the same two people there's person reason, girl, we know that ain't right. You know? E way when Ginger and I get in. Fights were both, like, strong wheeled right way, but it has a number times over the years, but um ah. Always had with me. I couldn't just blame God for making me marry somebody that shows her. See, when we have freedom to choose something, we own that decision. And I think that's probably helped us stay married. Right? And I want you to go in on the decision. If you got married, you stand there. You said I do. So just own it. Right. So going back to this, Okay. God wants to give me to give other people freedom so that we can have all think relationship that starts with being able to hear their No. Okay, sometimes people tell, you know, and you have to hear their No. This is one thing that we had to try to teach our kids because sometimes we tell them, though, and they work. Every single angle known to man occasion will let him work that angle. But sometimes I make a good point. That's okay. That gives them power, right? Like a negotiate. But sometimes what? You need to hear my No, but we need to hear other people's now. And so there's a difference. Like I'm gonna tell you something. I i m a leader and I'm in leadership, and I like to get people to help, right? Sometimes I say No, here's my Here's my boundary. I want to motivate them But I never want somebody to do something for me that they just are saying no In their heart, I would rather them just say no because then we never we stand and there's freedom and I can trust if somebody says no to me, Well, guess what? The laurel have another way? Because he's pretty big right? But what does that preserve, John, Do you like to tell people? Yes, on the outside, But you're saying no on the inside. It's no fun is what happens. What happens to the people that you say yes to over and over again, Even though you're saying no in your heart, you resent that person. You don't like that person. You don't want to be around that person. It might not be that strong, but this is what happens when you know you have relationships. Maybe a couple has been married for 20 years, and one of them has been overbearing and one of them has been very authoritative and the other one's been compliant. But it has not been out of a yes in their heart. They just divorce out of nowhere. But it wasn't out of nowhere. It was something that so we have to have a relationship. We have to be able to hear other people's no. And so this means that we want toe motivate them if we're trying to win them to our cause. But we don't want to cross the line of manipulating them. And that means where we're getting them to do something. If they don't want to do, we're honoring their choice. See, the Lord does that for us. He honors our choice and there's something great. And it's something that is honorable about this. You know, one of the fruit, one of the works of the flesh, is called witchcraft. But witchcraft is really us figuring out crazy means to get what we want. Even going into the spirit world, some of you guys pray about things and your prayers to try to overcome somebody's wheel. Okay, that will cause you to reach something other than what you want to read. Now, if you want to pray that Auburn wins, that is an exception to this rule. Okay? I'm just choking. So when a motivate And you know what? I'm one day I've got another mourner too. But I'm gonna stop there. I think we're out of time. I think that's a good starting point where we stand, we want to hear other people's no. Does that allow That allows us to really receive their Yes. Doesn't. Yeah, we're building on good foundation here. So let's pray. Lord, we just pray in our lives that we were recognized the freedom that we have in Christ. And when I just pray that you would break off of every person in here the voice of condemnation. Listen, God does not condemn you, but I pray you would break off the voice of condemnation. If you're in Christ, you're a new creation. If you're in Christ, you're a new creation. You are under condemnation if you don't know the Lord. But Jesus actually paid for your sins. So you're no longer under that you're not under that way, team Or could you exchanged it for what Jesus purchased. So we give our life to Jesus. There is tremendous freedom that he's given us. There's no condemnation in cross Jesus. That's powerful I pray my prayers, that Lord get off for you The weight and the expectation that you thought was coming from God and instead, the Lord. I pray you get to them a tremendous freedom that we have in cross Jesus. And I pray that we will use our freedom not for the flesh, but we'll use our freedom. Toe love were that will be faith. Expression itself through love. We'll use it for good. And then secondly, I'm gonna lead us in prayer. Okay, Lord, this is about us giving other people freedom. OK, Lord, forgive me for trying to manipulate and control other people towards my aunt. I repent. You don't do that to me. And I don't want to do that. Other people instead give me supernatural grace to give other people a choice. And in doing so, I received there. Yes. I'm gonna be okay. For more information about the Ope's visit the oaks dot org, Thanks for listening