The Changing of You

The Changing of You – Pastor Leon Fontaine (Sermon Notes)

  • One of the greatest tricks of the enemy is to make you believe that where you are is who you are
    • You are what you can’t do
    • You can’t change
    • Medical science teaches that the brain is hardwired
  • This is not true, science has found that the brain is so fluid that it can be changed
    • There is a process to change
    • Dr. Carolyn Leaf1 came in and spoke about Neuroplasticity2 and how your brain is so capable of changing
    • God’s word is true the thoughts that you think about yourself and life are powerful
      • Everyone thinks thoughts are just random
      • When you wake up in the AM and have a thought the thinking of your head determines a lot of what goes on with your body
      • One thought can have a physiological impact on the body – impacting bodily functions
      • The word of God says that your thinking controls your entire life
        • Romans 12 speaks about the fact that if we want to live according to the will of God, we must renew our mind3
        • What should I change to? What am I to become? How am I to renew my mind?
          • When someone becomes a Christian the first year of life they have the greatest impact on others. In one year more impact on others than the rest of your life. Why is that?
            • Don’t Christians often become something that they shouldn’t become?(e.g. spooky, religious, weird, judgmental, rebuking others, calling out sin)
            • Read from 2 Corinthians 3:17-18 (Amplified) Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty [emancipation from bondage, true freedom]. And we all, with unveiled face, continually seeing as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are progressively being transformed into His image from [one degree of] glory to [even more] glory, which comes from the Lord, [who is] the Spirit.
            • We are transfigured into His image.
  • What does God look like to you?
    • Do you even know what it looks like to be transformed from glory to glory?
    • 1,100 pastors a month leave the ministry in America
      • The Church is becoming irrelevant
    • Does God want us to rebuke people? Correct people?
      • Jesus never hunted down people who did wrong, He only corrected mainly the religious people (Scribes, Pharisees)
    • Do we always say “God bless you” and act religious when we are around others?
    • 1 John 4:17-19 (Amplified) In this [union and fellowship with Him], love is completed and perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment [with assurance and boldness to face Him]; because as He is, so are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love [dread does not exist]. But perfect (complete, full-grown) love drives out fear, because fear involves [the expectation of divine] punishment, so the one who is afraid [of God’s judgment] is not perfected in love [has not grown into a sufficient understanding of God’s love]. 19 We love, because [a]He first loved us.
      • We shouldn’t be spiritual, religious, spooky, judgmental
      • We want to be as He is – as Jesus is that is the picture of how we want to change and be renewed
    • When you rise up and become like Him, you bring glory to God
      • We are God’s crowning creation and achievement
      • Religion has reduced us to being poor little bags of blood always looking for God’s glory
        • We have it; we are God’s glory. God’s presence is in you, get up and do something. Don’t look for a supernatural experience – just rise up and love as Jesus would, walk as a son of God
        • When you have done it to the least of mine you have done it to me.
  • Renewing our mind – practically walk out
    • Why your mind needs to be changed or renewed
    • Curse in garden had a brutal impact on our ability to believe and see
      • Impacted how we see ourselves and how we see God.
        • Adam and Eve hid from God sin has opened up feelings of:
          • Guilt
          • Fear
          • Shame
        • This is how the human race acts in the presence of God – we hide, we have guilt, we feel we are not good enough. We withdraw.
          • We carry shame and guilt
    • Everything that Jesus did was to stop the way we see God and ourselves. To stop us condemning ourselves and feeling shame and guilt
      • He said come boldly to the throne of God (Hebrews 4:16)
      • You are my son (Psalm 2:7)
      • We cry Abba Father (Romans 8:15)
      • Change how we see God – do we see a big bad mean God? If so, we need to renew this image in our mind
      • We need to change how we see ourselves – renew our mind
        • God needs to change our mind on these things
  • Meditation
    • Meditation I believe is the missing link that can take us toward renewing our mind and overcoming feelings of shame, doubt, etc.
    • How to meditate?
    • A great part of prayer is meditation – allow his presence to do something to you
    • Gods word has promises
      • We need to stand on God’s promises – how do we do this, how do we renew our mind in this?
    • Example – someone that is insecure
      • A person can look at an insecure issue in their life
      • As we look at the thing we are insecure about, we begin to feel insecure.
      • When we feel insecure, we begin to look for evidence to ratify our feelings
      • This creates a repetitive cycle where we are always looking for reasons to feel insecure
        • Creates a state of insecurity that can go on until we believe that this is the way we are
      • We try to serve God – If God has called us to serve kids how is he going to get our butt on the stage – He has to get us to rise up, to change our heart our belief about ourselves to overcome insecurity
    • Need to use God’s word to renew our mind and we will change
      • Joshua 1:8 (Amplified) This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall read [and meditate on] it day and night, so that you may be careful to do [everything] in accordance with all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will be [a] successful.
      • How is our prayer life? Do we fell that to be spiritual we must beg and bug God?
        • Tears and cry
        • Pray hour after hour – for many hours
        • Grab horns of altar
        • Pray for healing
        • This is an image that we passively wait and beg and plead for God to do something
        • This is not correct
        • Doesn’t God want to save our community and us and heal us more than we want it? Then why are we asking Him all the time, why are we crying and begging.
      • Praying looks different then some think – someone said that they never pray longer than 15 minutes or go 15 minutes without praying – constant connection
    • If we are insecure and want to change – what to do?
      • Find promise – “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13)
        • But we have known this word our whole life and we are still insecure?
      • Know truth but the truth is not setting you free! Head knowledge does not lead to freedom!
        • God’s word does not change you just because you know it
        • God’s word changes you when it goes to work on the beliefs of your heart
        • We want this word to impact our whole life
        • Now they tell me to meditate on this, what does that look like? Say it over and over?
      • This word impacts us not when we say it over and over, but when it impacts what we see in our heart, what we believe
      • We want the Holy Spirit to take the promise and paint new pictures for our future of what we will become of how we will change
        • Heart sees the end from the beginning
        • The brain always see the steps – how are we going to get there and the brain is sorting and managing
        • The heart doesn’t do that, it simply sees the answer, and it sees it done. This is why we need to get the change into our heart.
      • Another example
        • I want to teach kids but I am too insecure to do that
        • Take bible verse again, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”
          • See yourself in front of kids
          • See yourself teaching
          • Have a bible and the kids are laughing and rejoicing and you see yourself loving it and enjoying it
          • See the kids enjoying it
        • Now the word is changing what you see
        • We must change our heart images
    • No matter what you are believing for, you need to see it done. See the destination
      • God’s word needs to impact and change how you look at things
      • The Holy Spirit will help you to develop this vision
      • The Holy Spirit will show you things to come; the Holy Spirit will help you dream (Hebrews 11:1).
      • This is the process for everything in life
        • If you struggle with anger
        • You can be the Dad that you always want to be
          • God’s will is for you to be patient
          • You need to find the promise and meditate on it, you need to visualize it in your mind, what it looks like to be the Dad you want to be
    • Claim the word and allow it to change the way that you see yourself
      • Don’t plead for God to change you – visualize yourself changing, see the change, see the renewed you.
  • Focus each day – thank God for the promises in your prayer and see yourself as the new you
    • Mentally practice who you want to become
      • This sounds New Age
      • New Age got it from the bible
    • One definition of imagine in Hebrew is meditate (Young’s)
    • Imagination is part of your mind
    • You need to root out the negative thinking
    • Deepest thoughts of your heart are leading you to your future
    • Instead of begging God to take it away pray from position of power based on God’s word
    • You can change – what you want to change can be changed through God’s word; your current state can be changed. You can have liberty through God’s word
    • Need to break the guilt and the condemnation
    • You are not praying God’s word because He has forgotten it.
      • When you pray the word you are renewing your mind and reintroducing God’s dream for your life
      • Success comes from the heart, focus on God’s word and stand and renew your mind on God’s word
      • Ask God for a new vision
      • If job is stressful, meditate on the job being a joy based on God’s word
      • You believe what you see on the inside
      • Then God’s grace will go to work and His favor will go to work

1 http://drleaf.com/about/

2 The brain’s ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections throughout life. Neuroplasticity allows the neurons (nerve cells) in the brain to compensate for injury and disease and to adjust their activities in response to new situations or to changes in their environment.

3Romans 12 (Amplified Bible (AMP)) – Therefore I urge you, [b] brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies [dedicating all of yourselves, set apart] as a living sacrifice, holy and well pleasing to God, which is your rational (logical, intelligent) act of worship. And do not be conformed to this world [any longer with its superficial values and customs], but be [c] transformed and progressively changed [as you mature spiritually] by the renewing of your mind [focusing on godly values and ethical attitudes], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His plan and purpose for you].

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