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Joyce Meyer - Be Honest with Yourself


Joyce Meyer - Be Honest with Yourself
TOPICS: Honesty
Joyce Meyer - Be Honest with Yourself

One of the things that I had to learn, and it started coming really early in my life. 'cause I don't think you can make progress without this, is to learn how to be honest with yourself, about yourself. Hmm, ouch, ouch. John 8:31 and 32, "If you continue in my word, then are you my disciples indeed: and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free". Now, it's not just hearing the truth, that makes us free. It's applying the truth that we hear. And I don't know how much you're aware of this, or not aware of this, but people are so deceived. It's amazing how many things that people believe that just aren't true at all. But the sad thing is, is if you believe it, then it's true for you.

One example, maybe you've messed up in life and the devil's got you deceived into thinking that, now you're always gonna have to have an inferior life. Lie, that's a lie. Because God says that he will take even the fragments of your life and do something amazing with 'em. God doesn't waste even our pain. God will take even our pain and get use out of it, if we give it to him. There's nothing that is unredeemable by God. God is the redeemer, and he can redeem anything. That's why no person here tonight or watching by TV, you do not have to have fear in your life that it's too late for you, that you've done too much wrong, that there's no hope for you. You do not have to live in fear, because God is the redeemer. He has bought us back with the blood of Christ. And everything in our life can be bought back, worked over, and turned into something good. Did you hear that?

God can take the worst thing that you could possibly imagine, and somehow or another, he throws a few of his own ingredients in there, and it turns out to be a miracle. But all you gotta do is give it to him. Just give it to him, here God, I've made this huge mess, and I'm sorry I can't do anything about it, I'm just givin' it to you. And he won't throw it back at you, he'll take it and show himself to be God in your life. We need to be set free from deception. Satan is the great deceiver. We have blind spots in our life. Just like you have blind spots in your side mirrors on your car, your rear-view mirrors. That's why you got more than one mirror. You've got this mirror, you've got that mirror, you've got that mirror. Because there's blind spots, you gotta look everywhere. And we need to go to God and say, "God, I wanna learn how to be honest with me, about me".

It's a scary thought, isn't it? That it's not the truth about somebody else, that will set me free. It's the truth about me, that will set me free. And we don't mind hearing truth about somebody else. I'm sure you've already thought of a whole long list of people that you wish were here this weekend. "Man, if so-and-so just wouldn't of backed out, this was just what they needed". And, you know, you're thinking of four people you could call tomorrow and get 'em to come. Amen.

Well, bring 'em anyway, that's good. But the point is I'm here and you're here, and God's got something to say to us. I just really encourage you to learn how to be honest with yourself, about yourself. It's great for us to know our strong points. But we also need to be well acquainted with our weaknesses. Not unto condemnation, it's not about condemnation. It's about honesty, and getting things out in the open. Because the only things that Satan has power over, are things that are hidden in the dark. When we get things out into the light, they lose their power. Amen? You don't have to have things hidden in the dark, where there's just Satan uses them to torment you. You can get 'em out in the open, bring 'em out into the light, expose them to God. He knows all about 'em anyway. And say, "God, I own up to this, I take responsibility for it, and I want to be set free".

Jeremiah 17 verse 9, let's take a look at this scripture. "The heart is deceitful above all things, and it is exceedingly perverse and corrupt and severely, and mortally sick! Who can know and [perceive, and understand, be acquainted with his own heart and mind]"? In other words, all of us including me, we have ideas about ourselves that sometimes are a little bit lofty. And I'm gonna find me somebody that's in agreement, and I'm just gonna preach to them. Let's put it like this, do you think that maybe occasionally, you think you know, a little more than you really do? You know what I've decided? Nobody knows anything until they're at least 40.

Now listen, now wait, before all you young people wanna throw something at me, listen, and then when you're 40, here's the first sign that you're learning something, because when you're about 40, you begin to think, "I don't know a thing". And that's the first sign of any intelligence, when you can say, "You know what? I really just don't know a thing, I am just a lost mess without God". And that's the first sign that there's a little bit of intelligent life in us, that maybe now, we've got a teachable spirit, and God can teach us something. It's a scary thing really, when you think about, and this is something we should pray every day.

I think we should pray, "God, help me not to be deceived". Could we begin to pray that on a regular? "God, help me not to be deceived. And if there are any areas in my life where I am deceived, then reveal them to me. Reveal truth to me because I don't wanna be deceived. And I especially don't wanna be deceived about myself. Help me not to think more highly of myself than I ought to. Help me not to mistreat people and not even know that I did it. Help me not to be so selfish and full of myself, that there's people all around me with needs, and I'm just totally oblivious to their needs, because I'm so full of me. Help me not to blame all of my issues on somebody else. Help me not to sit around my house, in deception feeling sorry for myself, when the truth is I am so blessed that I don't even hardly know which end is up".

Can I tell you the truth? Just go ahead and just get ready, for this download I'm about to give you. There's no reason for anybody in this room tonight, to ever feel sorry for yourself. You know why? Because you got hope. You may have a bad situation, but you've got Jesus, and you've got hope, and there's answers. And I would say even for people watching by TV, I know some of you have got terrible messes in your life, and it's not that I don't have any empathy, I do. But I had to learn this from God, "You can be pitiful, or you can be powerful, Joyce, but you're not gonna be both, so you can take your pick". And everything that was wrong in my life, was somebody else's fault. It was Dave's fault. "If Dave wouldn't do this, then I'd be happy". "And if the kids would do that, then I'd be happy". And blame, "And it's not my fault, it's not my fault".

Until God decided to show me some truth. He showed me what it was like to live in the house with me. And I cried for three days. I'm telling you the truth. I still remember the exact spot that I was at in the house, when God showed me that Dave wasn't the problem, that I was. He said, "You're manipulative, you're controlling, you're hard to get along with, you're full of self-pity". Yeah, I didn't feel so good about myself that day. But it helped me get from where I was, to where I am. See here's the thing, back here in my childhood I had the test. As a young woman in my twenties and thirties, I had the monies. But I hadn't gotten 'em together yet, to have a testimony.

So, I wanna know if anybody here is gonna make it through the monies, and get to the point where you've got a great testimony, that's gonna encourage other people, that the power of God is real in their lives? And that there's a great life available for them. Amen, amen, amen! I've been thinkin' a lot about Obadiah chapter 1 verse 3 lately, because it simply says, "The pride of your heart hath deceived you". Oh! That stinkin' pride, thinking more highly of ourselves than we ought to. And anytime we do that, we automatically look down on other people. "I'm not gonna listen to you, you don't know as much as me". "Why don't you quit talking, so I can tell you what, the way things really are"? C'mon, you've got it, right? I wanna see you perk up, when you have this point.

See, and then we can go on to another point. Deception, probably one of the greatest examples in the Bible about deception, is in 1 Samuel chapter 15. When God had anointed Saul to be king, and he gave him some instructions, that he was to go into the enemy nation, and kill everything, everybody, all the sheep, all the oxen, all the people, men, women, children, everybody, he said, "Get rid of all of 'em". And I know that sounds a little harsh, but you gotta keep in mind that they were heathen worshipping, idol worshipping nations.

1 Samuel chapter 15 it says, "And Saul took agag the king of the Amalekites alive, although he did utterly destroy all the rest of the people". So, he didn't do what God told him to. He did almost what God told him to. But he didn't do what God told him to. And partial obedience is really the same as no obedience at all. Hmm, do I need to put whipped cream on that to get you to eat it? I said, "Partial", okay, I'll read another verse. So, "He spared agag and the best of the sheep, the oxen, the fatlings, the lambs, and all that was good". So, he went in there and instead of destroying everything like God told him to, he got rid of all the junk, and kept all the good stuff. And then, to make matters worse, God said, "I regret making Saul king, because he doesn't follow my commandments".

Now, Samuel the prophet went to Saul and said, "Saul, what is it that you have done"? And Saul said, listen to this, "Blessed are you of the Lord. I have performed all that the Lord ordered me to do". And you know what? I think he kinda, sorta thought he did. He just compromised, and he thought he could give God partial obedience, or that he could maybe kinda serve God a little bit on Sunday mornings, but do what he wanted to do the rest of the week. Ooh, uh-oh, uh-oh. "Well, I'll just listen to Joyce every morning and that'll take care of everything, that's my God time. Me and Joyce". You know what? I'm really glad you listen to me, but if you gotta choose between me and God, then choose God. Will you? Cause I don't want you getting me in trouble.

So, I feel compelled to tell you to put God first. Amen? There's no other man or woman on earth, that can take the place that belongs to God. It's great to learn and grow, but then, take what you learn and get with God, and ask him to make it work in your life. So anyway, "Oh yes, I've done, I've done what God told me to". Well, long story, I don't have time to get into it. But when it got all the way down to the bottom of it, you know what it really was, what the problem was? The people got tired of waiting. And the Bible says that he did what he did, because he feared the people. He didn't wanna lose the people. And so, he compromised on his relationship with God, to keep the people happy.

Now, surely, there's somebody here, who's been invited to a party, where you knew there was gonna be drugs and a lot of wrong stuff, and you knew that you shouldn't go, but you didn't want your friends getting mad at you, so, you thought, "Well, I'll just go, but I won't really partake of anything. And I won't this, and I won't that". Then, you ended up in a big mess. Naa—nobody—naa you... Okay, I'll pick something else. You know, it's amazing the things that we do, just to not lose people. We gotta hang on to those people. And half the time they're people that are poisoning our lives. Don't care anything about us anyway. When push comes to shove, they'd be the first ones out the front door. But, we compromise our relationship with God, just to hang on to those people.

You need to start standing up to stuff and saying, "God is gonna be first in my life, and I hope you like it. But if you don't, God is still going to be first. Because I can do without you, but I cannot do without God". Amen? Let the truth set you free. The third thing I wanna talk to you about tonight, the first thing was, put God first and keep him first in all things, right? The second thing was, be honest with yourself, about yourself. All right? Now, knowing what this phrase "In Christ," really means. What does it mean to be "In Christ"? When you're born again, you're literally taken out of sin, and put over here in a different container called Christ.

So, you're no longer identified as dirty, rotten sinner, that's not your identity anymore. That's not your who anymore. You may still sin, but that's not who you are. You now have a new nature. "If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature". You get a new nature on the inside. Your soul is still the same. Your body still looks the same. There's a work that needs to be done in you, but the core of who you are now is holy, and right, and good. And God sees you in a totally different light. He now sees you "In Christ". But you have to begin to see yourself that way. But I'm gonna stop for just a minute, and do something. I think I'm gonna give away some free gifts. How many of you would like to have some free gifts? I mean, do you really want free gifts? I mean look, look at this, we have got my study Bibles, we've got my testimony, we've got some of my new, c'mon now, if you want these, you have to act like it.

I gotta see if you guys are really serious about wantin' free gifts, woo! Check that one out, free, free, free, free, free, woo! One more, who's gonna get the last free gift? There it is, woo! Don't we like free stuff? Isn't that amazing? Okay, now, you say, "What in the world are you doing"? Well, let's look at Romans 5:15. Romans chapter 5 verse 15, now, get locked back into what we're doing here. I did that to teach you a lesson that you're about to get. "But, God's free gift", but God's free gift... "But God's free gift is not at all to be compared to the trespass [his grace is out of all proportion to the fall of man]. For if many died through one man's falling away (his offense), much more profusely did God's grace and the free gift [that comes] through the undeserved favor of Jesus Christ overflow to many".

Verse 16, "Nor is the free gift at all to be compared to the effect of that one [man's] sin. For as one man's sin brought condemnation, the free gift", the free gift, verse 17. Come on, verse 17, "For if because of one man's trespass death reigned through that one, much more surely will those who receive [God's] overflowing grace the free gift of righteousness". Undeserved favor, the free gift of salvation, the free favor of God, freely forgives all of our sins. We get more excited about gettin' a free book in a meeting, than we do about having received the free gift of righteousness, in Jesus Christ. Gottcha, didn't i? It is amazing how we act, to get some kind of a material free gift.

And yet, let me tell you something, you are loaded on the inside! You are loaded. You have God in you, father, son and Holy Ghost. All the Fruit of the Spirit is in you. You've been justified, and sanctified, and made right with God, through the blood of Jesus Christ. It's impossible to grow. It's impossible to get from the test, through the monies. Is this making sense? To the testimony. They kinda go together. You have the test, you get the monies, then you finally get 'em together, now, you got a testimony. But it's impossible to get from the test, through the monies, to the testimony, unless you learn really who you are in Christ, and that your who is totally different than your do. I suffered so unbearably with guilt and condemnation.

Oh, my gosh. Felt like a lifetime of a nightmare. If I didn't feel wrong, I didn't feel right. It started in my childhood because of the abuse, and the devil got me convinced there was something wrong with me. And from then on, I had this little record playing in my head, "What's wrong with me? What's wrong with me? What's wrong with me? What's wrong with me"? Comparing myself with everybody else. I'd like to say that it stopped when I receive Christ, and got into the church, but it didn't. I just took it then to a spiritual level.

I still compared myself with everybody else, now, it was just Christians I was comparing myself with. And then even after I became a preacher, I compared myself with other preachers. It never stops until we learn who we are in Christ. That we are individuals in Christ. And he has an individual plan for our lives. And that there is no condemnation to those who are in Christ. There's only an opportunity for repentance, and gettin' in that elevator and pressing penthouse, and going back up to the top floor. Yeah, sometimes we fall to the basement. Sometimes there are rough days. Sometimes there's hard times. There's things that we don't understand. But in the midst of all of it, God loves us.
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