The Things We Hide part 4 of 4

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Have you ever seen someone do something wild or go somewhere wild or change their appearance drastically because they were trying to “find themself”? Share a story about a time you got a funny haircut or made a wild decision because you thought it would be “more you.” (Keep it lighthearted and fun!)
• Everyone wants to know who they are! That’s why there’s an entire genre for movies and TV shows called “coming of age” stories. People want to find themselves. They want to know who they were really created to be.
Tension Question: Did you know that you don’t have to search for you who are because God already tells you who you are in His Word? Tonight, I believe that Scripture is going to show us how God secures our identity in Christ.
• Scripture: 1 Peter 2:9
1 Peter 2:9 KJV 1900
But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
This is who Scripture says you are! You are chosen, royal, holy and special.
What does this mean for us today?
Luke 15:11–24 KJV 1900
And he said, A certain man had two sons: And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living. And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living. And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want. And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him. And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants. And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son. But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.
• This is the truth — this son forgot who he was. And there was a key reason he lost sight of it: shame distorted his vision.
• He believed the lie that his sin took away his standing as a son. When he thought about going back to his Father’s house, he viewed himself as a slave.
• The truth is, the way the Father responded in this story, is the way God the Father responds to us — He runs to meet us, welcoming us back with open arms.
• The Father reminds us that we are not slaves to sin — we are His sons and daughters, and there is always a place for us in His family.
• No amount of shame can change who God created us to be. While shame shakes us, God secures us.
Bottom Line: Shame wants to attack your identity, but God wants to secure your identity in Christ.
How do we apply this in our lives?
• Scripture: 2 Corinthians 5:17
2 Corinthians 5:17 KJV 1900
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
This Scripture makes it simple — when we are in Christ, everything from our old life that we could possibly be ashamed of is completely gone. We are new creations!
*(Share a story of a time when shame tried to make you lose sight of who you were, but God reminded you who He created you to be.)
• So many times, we think that we have to go off and search and find out who we are. In reality, shame distorts our vision and keeps us in a constant state of confusion, believing lies about who we really are.
Application: Ask God to remind you who He created you to be.
• Altar moment: The truth is, shame wants to keep you running in a constant circle, believing lies about who you are. Surrender your life to God tonight, and let Him tell you who you were created to be. No matter how far you’ve gone, the Father is always ready and willing to run to you when you decide to come home!
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