Relationship or Rights

Relationship or Rights

Sun 6 Feb 2011 AM

Would you rather be Right, or would you rather have Relationship? Hurt people hurt others, without even realising. We have no power really to stop painful things happening in our life. We do have the choice how we respond. Relationship conflicts reveal our heart attitude.
Audio Transcript
I want you to open your Bible with me in Matthew, Chapter 18. I want to speak a message called Relationship or Rights. Relationship or Rights - would you rather be right, or would you rather have relationship? While you're finding Matthew 18 - there's a scripture in Ephesians 5 that goes something like this. It says: be imitators of God, and walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave Himself for us. In other words, the Bible says: don't copy the guy next door to you. Don't copy someone down the road. Don't model your lifestyle on people who are broken and sinful. Rather model your lifestyle on what God is like.

We're called to become like Him, so God has designed us for relationship and to become like Him. To become like Him means, we need to model our life on Jesus, what He taught, and how He lived His life out; and walk in love, as He walked in love. So this is the challenge, is walking in love, a lifestyle of love, and it's not ishy-gishy or all that kind of [woohy] sort of thing. It's much, much more than that. It's something substantial that involves our character, what goes on in your heart. Now in life, there wouldn't be anyone here in this room who didn't have someone upset you or hurt you, probably on the way to church this morning - upset you or hurt you, just by living in life; and living in life, one thing is absolutely certain is taxes. The other thing that's fairly certain, is that you're going to get hurt, you're going to suffer injustice, you're going to suffer pain, you're going to get wounded in your interactions with people.

When this happens, which is part of life, it's natural to feel a bit hurt and a bit upset. Sometimes we might even get angry - tell someone next to you: that's you he's talking about now. I know you [Laughter] so it's quite natural to be like that. But the thing is, we have no power really to stop painful things happening in our life. We do have the choice how we respond, and it's the choice how you respond that positions you to walk in blessing and increase of the grace of God, or to literally open your life to demonic oppression. My observation is the majority of Christians suffer needlessly, suffer in their life and relationships, in ways that we should never have to suffer, because they don't understand how to walk in the love of God, how to walk and reflect the character of God. We would rather be right than do that, so when someone upsets you, you have a choice.

Your choice - remember, you have no choice over what they did. Here's what your choice is. Your choice is in how you respond; and you're either going to decide to move in blessing, or in cursing. Choose life, choose blessing rather than cursing. We always have the choice, so the moment someone upsets you, gets on your wick or anything, you can choose to walk in blessing, and release blessing - if you release grace and forgiveness; or if you want to demand your rights, and hold that the person has to put it right, and demand they apologise to you, you will walk in cursing.

I'll show you why you'll walk in cursing. God opened to me something from scripture; I've read it enough times, and you have too, but I saw something I had not seen before, because I've puzzled about this parable. So I want to go through the parable of the unforgiving servant, in Matthew Chapter 18 Verse 21. So in Verse 21, Peter came to Jesus and said: Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? How about seven times? That's pretty big of me, if I forgive him seven times. That's not to bad is it aye? I'm a pretty good guy don't you think? And Jesus said: no, seventy times seven. He said: what? Then Jesus began to speak a parable, and so He said: the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. When he begun to settle the accounts, there was one brought to him who owned him ten thousand talents. That's millions of dollars - and he was not able to pay.

Sermon Notes
Keywords: grace, pride, forgiveness, unforgiveness, hurt, anger, law, debt, heart, christian, torment, mind, judge, blame, repentant, bitter, attitude