"Breaking the Destructive Patterns of Dysfunction"
Sermon by Rev. Harrod Emmanuel Clay, Jr. When was the last time you felt safe? The last time you felt secure? Has there ever been a time in your life when you were safe, secure? Do you recall the moment when you ceased to be safe and secure because fear, terror, dread, anxiety, and worry replaced your sense of security? What robbed you? Who stole your sense of safety and security? Have you ever know the experience of being safe, secure? Do you feel safe now? Do you have hope? Questions regarding our safety and our hope must be settled because the decisions that we make are predicated upon our sense of security, much like the Israelites in Exodus 17,Numbers 13, and Numbers 14. In each of these passages the Israelites were faced with significant problems that caused them to question God's presence in their lives as well as his ability to deliver them; a water problem (Exodus 17), an Amalekite problem (Numbers 13), and a giant problem (Numbers 14). In all three passages we see the same pattern; their present problems overshadowed God's track record of miracles, signs, and wonders in their lives--freedom from slavery in Egypt, the parting of the Red Sea, the bitter waters of Marah being made sweet, and being fed manna from heaven. The reality of the miracles they experienced should have pointed them to the reality of God. The presence of the solution to the problems they faced was indicative of His presence. Yet, they refused to believe.
Like the Israelites, even in the worst time of our lives, God is with is. He is trying to get us somewhere. Ask yourself the question, Where is God trying to get me from---to? Isaiah 40 assures that God will make our wilderness experience a highway to get us to our destination. If we but trust Him and not rely on our own coping skills and devices, we will discover that God is faithful, our hope will be restored, and every destructive pattern of dysfunction in our lives will be broken.
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