WHAT TURNS OUR HEARTS TO STONE?

inside-narnia-edmundDo you remember how in Narnia the white witch turned the living creatures into stone? It wasn’t until Aslan came and breathed on them that life was restored.

Some of you have written me privately telling me that your heart became cold and withdrawn during a period of enormous loss. When loss comes into our lives, Satan also comes prowling in with his lies, hissing: YOU SEE? GOD DOESN’T LOVE YOU.

One of the most moving scenes in all of Scripture is the one we will study this week when Jesus comes to Mary, in the midst of her tremendous suffering.  I pray through this you will see Him coming to you in your suffering you will feel His warm breath, and be willing to relax in His arms, letting Him be your Comfort, your Control, your Approval.

FREE SERMON RESOURCE FROM REDEEMER.COM (FREE SERMONS) TIM KELLER: TRUTH, TEARS, ANGER, AND GRACE 9/16/01  JOHN 11:20-53

What Satan wants to do is cause “attachment disorder” between you and your heavenly Father.

“Attachment disorder” occurs when the person who should have protected you hurts you. One of our adopted daughters suffered with this, having experienced abuse in her childhood — so she had a wall up and a stony heart, trying to protect herself. But I see Aslan coming to her in so many ways, breathing on her! In this short but powerful passage, “Aslan” comes and breathes on Mary. If you are suffering, how I pray this will minister to you.

Each of us need Aslan’s warm breath, for this is the power of expulsive love. Unless we truly believe Jesus loves us, we will fear giving up our idols.

1. Read John 11:28-32

A. Describe Mary in this scene. What do you think she was feeling, thinking, and why?
B.  Have the actions of Jesus ever confused you? Has your confusion made you withdraw? Please share.

C.  Why does withdrawing work with Satan’s scheme?

2. Read John 11:33

A. Tim Keller says the words that describe the emotion of Jesus are underplayed by the translators.

He is deeply grieved, He is angry — He is groaning in His Spirit. Why, do you think? Write down

everything you can think of.

jesus-comforting-mary-of-bethany1-276x300B. Put yourself in Mary’s place now — for indeed, He loves you as He did her. He sees your

suffering. He sees your tears. He knows your pain. Write down everything you feel.

C. Now write down your fear in giving up an idol and also write down the truth you can speak

to your soul.

3. When you come to this blog on a daily basis, I’d like for you to give an account of how you did that day

with trusting God with your idol. Some days there won’t be a good report and Satan will tell you to give

up. Let’s not let him win. Keep coming back, keep coming to Jesus, keep coming to your sisters. SHARE

ALSO, FOR OUR ENCOURAGEMENT, WAYS “ASLAN” IS BREATHING ON YOU.

PRAYING FOR EACH OF YOU.

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I copied and pasted this because I though we might enjoy it.

“The Bible tells us that we are God’s masterpieces (poiema in Greek); not only creatures, but His creations, His poems (Eph 2:10). We are living epistles (2 Cor 3:3).

And so, our lives are meant to be listened to, because it is God who is speaking into and out of and through the symphony of the years, and the masterpiece of a lifetime.” ~Michael Card

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    Anne Thanks for sharing this. It gives me a new perspective of myself.

        Anne
        Thank you of thinking of me. Love this video!

    Anne, do you mind if I put this on my F.B. status?? :)

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    Anne — I don’t know how you found that sermon about Haman, but I decided I would listen to it to hear what you heard. You have such a teachable heart. Did you hear him say, “No one ever admits their problem is pride.” And I had to laugh as well for Haman is such an ultimate in pride. You are so dear and so teachable — and that was quite the story! I’m not sure I would have responded so well!

      O.k. ladies..you all have really sparked my interest in this Haman sermon…I am going to have to check it out. I am going to check out more of his sermons. I have heard nothing but good things about him.

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      Rebecca, the name of it is The Man the King Delights to Honor.

      Dee, I got it because the Lord intended for me to hear those words. I did not respond very well at first, but as I listened I could see myself. I am not much like Haman but I saw the root of my problem. Keller described 2 different types of proud people. My type is not so obvious. Both have self on the throne.

      The sermon about the other Haman was excellent. I remember when we studied Psalm 88 and now this puts the pieces together.

        Anne, Tell me the title of the other Haman as well and I am going to listen to both. I will have my husband listen in with me.

        The one Dee was referring to is Haman’s Cry of Darkness. I have forgotten the date but Susan gave it in her post. It is not a free one but very worth 2.50. The funny thing is I absolutely could not find it the first time I looked :~}

        Dee, your link is perfect..Thanks!! I am home not feeling well-cold coming on, and with a little one who is sick with fever so I will get to listen.

        I am listening to the first Keller sermon-”The man the King delights in.” I just took a break and had to tell you guys..When he was describing pride at first I thought..Wow..I don’t struggle with this, guess this sermon won’t really apply to me… then when he got into the inferiority form of pride, MY ears were pinned back..lol!!! Sorry, but I had to laugh because there I was sitting in a pit of pride thinking I must be pretty humble and then God comes in like a hurricane revealing part of the stumbling block to my stone. :)

        O.K. done with the sermon…Going to listen to it again with hubby when he wakes up. Still sinking in..Man was this crucial for me to hear in this process of change God is taking me through in our study here…I just learned that i struggle with the inferiority kind of pride. Satan has been using this to keep my eyes on me and from fully keeping my eyes on Jesus… YUK!!! Man I want to be free from this..This has been embedded in me since I was young through the example of one of my parents who lived this. Wow, and I can pass this ‘false humility’ down to my boys unless it changes.

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I’ve had a breakthrough with my stone! For three nights in a row I have not had good sleep. The first two nights were my fault but the third night was not. I made sure I went to bed on time and had no caffeine, no computer time, or blackberry time. So I was perplexed when I awoke at one am. I asked the Lord ‘what’s going on here?’, tuned in to Music in the Night for a few minutes and had no trouble going back to sleep. But, four hours later, the alarm signals it’s time to rise and I did AND I DID NOT GO BACK TO BED. My flesh wanted to but my spirit told my flesh NO. Later during my quiet time I got the answer to my question. ‘The enemy wants you to think you can’t live without your idol? My response? I know I can. This is huge for me.

I also have the tendency to run to food for comfort. Last night something finally clicked with me. When I’m extra tired I tend to want to eat something that I really don’t need to eat late in the day. I’ve been noticing that my body really likes it when I eat a light supper.

Deuteronomy 7:22 tells us “The LORD your God will drive out those nations before you, little by little.”

Spurgeon wrote, “Evil principles and practices die hard. May take years of grace on God’s part and years of effort on my part.”

Lord God I thank for granting me and my sisters success as we learn to long for only You. Grant us more. Amen

    Tammy, Praise God!!!! That is so awesome sis! Isn’t this such a blessing that all of us are going through this change together?!?!? God is good.

    so encouraged!! Keep it up! God is so good to show us these things!

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    That’s so wonderful Tammy. Amen to your prayer.

I am so encouraged by you all! What a blessing this study is. God is so good to us. Praying for each of you. As far as checking in…God provided a lady with wisdom in my struggle to talk to randomly (but we know it was planned) and unexpected by me. It was great encouragement and my women’s group as well. Both encouraged me in prayer and teaching…Seeing the worth and encouraging me to follow in obedience regardless. The funny thing is most of us as women do see ourselves and what we offer as not as valuable as the next woman. I wonder why this is? It was nice for us to all encourage one another in our giftings and commit to praying for one another. God always provides what we need at the proper time.

It is thrilling to see all the excitement, to know Aslan is breathing on us.

Each of you is throwing kindling on the fire, and what a blaze!

Pray for me as I write tomorrow’s post.

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    Lord, thank You for teaching us through Dee. I pray You will give her revelation from Your heart as she writes tomorrow’s post. Please continue to breathe on us. Amen

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Thank you for your post on attachment and explaining it in a way that others may understand. Raising a child with attachment has been a challenging and painful process. I can see how our child’s heart is beginning to change as love and true attachment is shown towards me. God has been so good. Thank you for posting about your journey:)

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    So encouraging to read about the love of God changing a heart that has been so damaged.

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Anne–bless you for mentioning The Man the King Delights to Honor! I haven’t even made it all the way through yet because I started taking notes and have already written a page! Just had to stop it to thank you–God really used you here.
Somewhere in the last few weeks I have really swung to the inferiority version of pride and it is gross (not to put myself down once again!) I am just really thankful–I needed this wake up call.

I can remember in college after years of Bible study, the Lord opening my eyes to the realization that I was the older son in the Prodigal son story. I spent my early years full of pride for not being the rebel in the family only to realize my sin was my pride! This was a great reminder, I really struggle between the approval-seeking and feeling good from a good compliment….to the being down on myself for my sin.

Keller said–Humility=thinking of self, less. I love it! I think I’ll write it down :)

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    Elizabeth, I am so glad this is helpful to you. There is something wrong with the recording and in the middle it goes back to the beginning. It happens just when he is getting to ‘the cure’, but it is all there as far as I could tell. I just fast forwarded to where I was when it glitched.

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    I liked that definition of humility too — not thinking less of yourself, but less of self less — so good.

    I guess Anne’s “mistake” was meant for others! Marveling at God’s hand.

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I’m here everyday, reading and praying for everyone. I just haven’t been very good about posting. My daughter plays little computor games and we just have the one computor and some days she plays for hours! I feel anxious to get on the study with you all, but try to be very patient and have some quite time reading then. I’m giving my stones to the Lord of Control and Comfort and feeling some gentle Aslan breathing on me:}

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I am thinking about how the Lord has spoken to my heart in the last few weeks and especially this week. What I mean is I’ve been contemplating feelings of guilt that have hounded me for years but more acutely in the last few years as many things in life seem not to have turned out as I thought they would. These feelings are at times relentless and oppressive.

This week God spoke to me about something poisonous in my life that I never felt one minute of guilt about. The pride thing I mean. When I saw it I was pierced through as I said but it was different. I was guilty and I knew it but that knowledge was followed by such peace and hope in mercy given and received. I am becoming suspect of feelings of guilt that are not banished by repentance or that seem to have no clear source.

In the study of Isaiah this week we are looking at what was meant by preparing the way of the Lord. What was John’s role in that preparation? He called people to repentance and baptism. Still today we prepare the way for the Lord to come to us. As we relinquish our idols we prepare the way for Him. We invite You Lord, please come to us. Help us as we prepare the way for You.

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    Thank you Anne, that really hit me…as I relinquish my idol, my SELF on the throne…I am “preparing the way for Him…” another one to write down ;)

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Hi all, this quote from Piper was on our bulletin at church this morning and I thought some of you might like it too with all we’ve been “digesting”!

When the people of God are set free from the compulsion of self-exaltation and self-justification and self-preservation, so that we live for the eternal good of other people, then we become the light of the world and the salt of the earth, and people notice in us the reality of God and give him glory (Matthew 5:14–16). Therefore if God’s purpose for us is to be accomplished in the world—to make known his glory through lives of love—then we must find a weapon with which to conquer the pride and insecurity that feeds our need to exalt ourselves and justify ourselves and preserve ourselves with postures and poses and performances and prosperity.
The weapon that God has put into the hands of his people is the promise of Romans 8:28. “We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, to those who are called according to his purpose” (KJV). The heart-felt confidence that God Almighty causes everything that happens to me to be good for me is the sword that severs the root of self-exaltation and self-justification and self-preservation. As verse 31 says, “If God is for us, who is against us?”

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    That is good Elizabeth. Thanks for taking the time to write it down and share it with us.

    Elizabeth, that fits in really great!! Aslan started breathing on these stones of ours on this blog and He is also using others in our sphere around us to solidify and enhance what He is showing us here..at church, a friend, a counselor, a bible study class, a posting in a bulletin at church..I can testify that He is doing this in my life and it is encouraging to see it in your all’s lives here too..I am willing to bet that Dee is very encouraged to see God moving in this incredible ministry He has given her with women.

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