Leon Fontaine - He Restores My Soul
Today, I'm going to title this part of it as we talk about Holy Spirit, "He Restores My Soul". He Restores My Soul. I've counseled with people in every kind of situation you can imagine for almost 40 years. I've prayed with people about stuffs so bizarre and sick. I can't repeat them. Broken people, hurting people. You know, whenever we would date somebody. I remember when I was single. We talked about a certain girl. We go, "She's damage goods". I'm sure the girls talked about the guys that way, too. He's damage goods. Don't touch him. What a true statement about all of us. What a true statement about all of us.
I remember praying one day at a healing service and I walked down to pray with one couple who were so broken. I didn't know what to say, tried to get them to stop crying so I could talk in and what they said was their daughter had been murdered just that weekend, brutally murdered while the little, her little daughter watched and then managed to hide from him. Talk about broken, talk about, but when I get done praying with them, I walked over to another family across the way a little bit, a couple just broken. And I got them quiet and down and there's a line-up of people and I asked what they wanted prayer for and they were so ashamed, so guilt-ridden. Their son had killed his live-in girlfriend that weekend brutally and they just were almost in their last braincell. They didn't know where to go with this. The life of a pastor. If you're going to be alive for the presence of God is bringing healing to broken hearts.
Now I'm going to get a little serious because we need to talk about this and I need this message to be ready for this world for you as a church. But when you've been betrayed, you're broken. When you've lost something you love so deeply, the wound is off the charts. If you've been divorced, which is half of our church. You will both struggle with guilt and shame. But you'll also struggle with betrayal and lost. Don't, don't worry about it. Just, you will. It's just the way the enemy works. It's the way he attacks you. When we deal this guilt, with shame, with anger, with hatred, with blame. When you've been betrayed, when you've lost, when you've been abused. When you've been the abuser. I deal with so many suicides.
And today I want to talk about the broken heart because you could be here trying to serve God and live for God and have never known the truth about this and have never allowed the Holy Spirit to change you. When we say a dishwasher's broken, it means it doesn't work. If we say my car is broken, it doesn't work. When we say our heart is broken, it doesn't work. And the heart, the very seat of your identity and your emotions is broken. And today I'm not talking about counseling. Although I love good counseling when it's done right. But I'm talking about restoration. I'm talking about a miraculous touch of the Spirit of God, because if you don't deal with these things, it works the way you see stuff. The way you see people. The way you see relationships. That you can't love like you want to love. You know you're broken and you can't fix it. And if you're dealing with guilt and shame which all of us are. You try to just justify it rather than to let the presence of God and the blood of Jesus just... and so the soul is damaged.
My mom when my dad passed away, was impacted. And when it wasn't expected. It was out of the blue. And, you know, I remember a couple of years later talking with her and we're just having real talks because that's what all you can do as someone is, you know, who do you trust to talk about real stuff. And she says, "You know, there's a whole new meaning Leon to the word that says, 'He restores my soul.'" Whenever I'd go to an amputation, if someone had an arm ripped off in an industrial accident. As a paramedic and you begin to try to keep this person alive to get back to the hospital. It was amazing the raw nerve endings. And even when that person when I spoke to them. We were based at the hospital so I get the chance to see them coming in for a year or two. And they would talk about this phantom pains and all the different things that they dealt with and how it had to heal up.
Your soul is the same way. Your soul has been hurt. You could have hurt it yourself. I don't care where, how, but we need the presence of God to touch us, to heal us, so that we can function normally. You can't live a faáade. You can't live, well, I'm doing my best. In 3 John 2, it literally says that your life in the area of health and healing and prosperity will prosper based on your soul. So your soul needs to be healthy. And so most of us have lived our lives in a world that was so full of junk. And I'm not saying this to make anybody feel guilty. You feel guilty enough if that's what you're struggling with. If you've been betrayed, you're dealing with betrayal. If you've lost something, you're just sure that nobody understands. But I want you to know that the 23 Psalm, that one line where it says, "He restores my soul". That if you can learn to get into God's Word and let the Spirit of God touch you. He will heal you and change you.
If you've been raised in a home where you've never been shown love. You've never been built up as a man. You're a man. You're amazing. My son, I'm proud of you. If you had a dad that was, some anal guy they could never say that. You're damaged goods. Stop calling me damaged goods. Let's get you healed. Let's get you healed. And what, you know, so the way God's designed a human being to be loved and believed in and raised up. The way He's designed relationships to be. He heals the broken hearted. And when that heart gets healed. It starts to function. It starts to do its job. Things begin to change on the inside. Oh, to be born again and to know Holy Spirit.
You see, when you fellowship with Holy Spirit, the Bible says you begin to sense the love of God, the grace of Jesus, and the communion with Holy Spirit. This fellowship, this Koinonia is so rich and so beautiful. That it just heals you. It restores you. And I want you to be very aware today, that if you do not recognize and at least admit. That okay, I need help here. I was raised in a stunningly good home. Man, anytime I start talking about my parents and what I saw and what I was raised with. They look at me and go, "That's not even fair. What a rip off. You got a parents like that. You should have seen my parents".
I know. I'm blessed. But I got to tell you. As good as Sally and I have tried to raise our kids and with the things that we can talk and teach about. We know we're nowhere near what they would need from Father God. And that Father God, He answered all the things we couldn't be, didn't know, and couldn't do for them. And because, because He's the Father. And He is the Father to the fatherless areas of my children. He is the mother to the motherless areas of our children. And that brings a hope that your own relationship with God brings you quickly into a place of healing and restoration. There's someone listening to me right now that you've never been restored. You could be married for decades. You could just be really high up in your field and brilliant in your mind, in your career. But if you've never been healed of a broken heart.
I meet people all around the world, multimillionaires. I sat down with one of the top actresses and we were in one of the American cities and her husband just kept everybody away because I just looked her right in the face as I talked to her about the broken heart that she was exhibiting. And she just sat there and wept unashamedly in an open restaurant where people walking by. And her husband just got up and just stood there and won't let anybody come near us because he knew there's nothing he could do with that. But God, the presence of God was restoring and healing. The Bible says in Acts 3:19, repent and be converted so your sins may be blotted out. So your sins are blotted out when you're born again. But then it says, so the times of refreshing will come from the presence of God.
Where does the refreshing come from? The presence of God. This presence of God that is within you. That heals this mind, restores this body. Make sure a heart work where your very identity comes from. If you've done things with your life that you're so ashamed of, you don't need to be telling people. But if you've got someone you can talk to about it, and then great. Find a safe counselor, a pastor. But recognize that the attack of guilt and the development of shame and the development of condemnation is so great. You're barely hanging on to an emotion in your head. Let alone function properly. And it just takes the breath of God to heal you. If you've gone through something, a trauma, a tragedy. If you've gone through something, a betrayal.
You know, you need to just get into the 23 Psalm and say, "Holy Spirit, You're on the inside of me. You lead me beside the still waters. You lead me beside the green grass. You restore my soul. You lead me in paths of righteousness because I'm not righteous on my own. But it's this gift of", Like when you begin to unpack the 23rd Psalm, the Psalm will just heal you. If you'll meditate, take it through the new covenant. Take it through the cross and recognize He prepares a table before you in the presence of your enemies. Don't be worried about anyone. They can't stop you. They can't touch you. The presence of God is upon you.
You know, as a young man, as I would go to some of these conferences. I'm just being very blunt because I haven't got time to speak baloney. I just noticed this incredible difference between man and woman that would teach and I could just feel the wind of God in my heart. And the rest were good. They were informative. They were funny. They made me laugh. They had good jokes. They were entertaining. I like all of that rolled into one if you can. But then this people, sometimes they were halting. They didn't even have good messages. Sometimes they didn't have a good way to express. They weren't entertaining at all. But when they got up, it's just this, filled the place, lives will be touched, tears would flow. People would decide sitting there. I decide. I could tell you every message and who preached it and what city I was in that absolutely revolutionize my life. And it wasn't, I couldn't give you the doctrines as much as something happened to me. The breathe of God. The presence of God touched me.
I want you to know it doesn't matter where you come from, what you do. We need to be born again. Your sin is blotted out. But this refreshing times of Holy Spirit. The Bible says they stayed full of the Holy Spirit. You understand the apostle Paul who wrote the Bible was so filled with shame. So filled with guilt. So filled with condemnation because he had walked children and women to their deaths. He tied up kids and women and locked them up. If he could take this guy and set him free to love and to serve God. I would go into the prison with my dad every weekend on Saturdays in Stony Mountain. And I remember this one wife sent in which we met with the husband. You know, it wasn't her husband. I'm sorry because she was dead. He'd killed her. But it was a friend of this man.
And I remember him walking out and coming in and sitting down and talked. And he'd killed children and women. It was just something that, you know, you're just kind, you're just disgusted by it and I said, "God, give me love". And I watched the presence of God touched him. And I watched his heart come alive and this knowledge that he was forgiven. And then I watched the presence of God just go, and he started to smile. And when I would meet with them and talk with them the Saturdays after that. The joy, the witnessing, the praying he was doing. And he was a huge, powerful, wicked looking guy. No one mess with this guy. But he was one broken puppy. And when God restored him and healed him, he would begin to minister within that jail. And it was a stunning thing to me who can be very judgmental just like you can, to see God use him. And if God can heal and take murderers of children and women like the apostle Paul and like this man, then touch him.
Then don't let the enemy just harass you with the guilt and the condemnation and the shame of your past. Don't let him take what other people have done to you and destroyed your past into destroying your future. And take and allow Holy Spirit. It's in the communion with Holy Spirit that he begins to minister to you. The fruits of the Spirit are for God's character to flow in you. The gifts of the Spirit are for you to minister the very presence of God to others. But without the healing power of joy and love and patience and kindness and goodness and self-control and the fruits, the character. You're never going to be able to be whole. I've seen people as I would minister around the world with great men and women. I would see the Word of God. I would see the gifts of the Spirit flow through someone and an incredible miracle take place. But only to go back to a really messed up marriage. Only to go back to a really unhappy puppy.
When he was done using his gift and the gift, you know, when he go back and you could just see the loneliness. He couldn't make a relationship work. How does it even work? I don't know all the time. But I just know that I wanted to be whole. I want to be a person that times of refreshing are always flowing in my life. So that person who's threatening my life and that person who's blogging about me and that person who sued me. And all the things that go on. That I'm not sitting and stuck in a life full of anger and resentment and envy and what people. You were living in a world where people are going to do stuff. And you and I could swap war stories. But I promise you I've ministered to someone who's had it worse than you. I just couldn't tell their story because it's so gross. And I've seen them rise up with the light and the life of Jesus because they are born again. And until the Word of God, when you begin to fellowship with Holy Spirit, the Word comes alive. Something goes on the inside.
This refreshing begins to touch you in a way that is amazing and your tongue becomes the tongue, the pen of a ready writer as it writes on your heart the new truths of God. When you, I haven't got time for Scriptures I'm, but it's all through the Word. You know, when God reached down His finger and Moses is standing there with a tablet of rock, and He's going to write the Ten Commandments on it. We don't know if he set it down before God and backed away with his eyeballs this big, or if he stood there and held this great big slab of tablet and the finger of God, first command, like a laser beam. But now He writes them on your heart. When God's Word gets inside of you and you're free and you're whole and you're loved and the old you is dead and you're forgiven. There's a new you. This presence of God. This refreshing. This life and you just leave this... You let it go and you move on.
I can't explain it to somebody who's going to be just sit there with your wife and little face, and you just have no understanding. Okay, do you want me to know how you feel or you want me to help you? Everybody wants people to know how they feel. Really? I remember as a paramedic going to a call where a guy was waving a front-end loader forward to hook it up and he made a wrong call. Something happened and he was standing close to a cement wall. And the blade of this front-end loader caught him at the knees and crushed his knees into the cement wall. He fell on his bum with his feet in his lap. And that's how I found him screaming for help. It was interesting. I don't make light of this but I saw stuff like this for seven years. I remember walking up to him and he didn't go, "Don't you touch me till you know how I feel". He didn't even care. He didn't have a conversation with me.
Have you ever had your knees destroyed and your joints popped and your feet sitting in your lap? I just want to tell you how I feel. He didn't care of what I felt. He just went, "Give me something for pain right now". Why do you need people to know? Allow God to heal you and just restore you. Why you just be the best version of who you are with Jesus today. Snap all the umbilical cords that have tied you to guilt and shame, or loss or betrayal or brokenness or what ifs or how comes and regrets. And all the negative junk that clouds up your heart and your mind. And as you receive this refreshing, this life, this incredible breath of God that Holy Spirit does for you and to you. You rise up and you no longer look to your past as to who your identity is. Paul put it this way. Boy, he needed this one. He said, "Forgetting those things which are behind". I got a good forgetter. I really do.
I bought into this message about forgetting a long time ago. People will walk up to me and go, "I know we're on. I know you know five years ago when we left, we said this and we did this". And I'll go, do you remember? I go, "Um, no. I'm so sorry". And I'll talk to someone say, "Oh, yeah. You remember that"? I go, "Okay, now if you explain it. I will". But there's an amazing forgetfulness. That if God makes Himself forget your past, He'll give you an ability to forget the guilt, the shame. You might, you'd try to dredge that memory up, bring it there. But there's an incredible power to forget. Forgetting those things which are behind. Who needs it? You don't need it. But Leon, we can learn from our mistakes. Man, you've been learning for ten years with that mistake. Why don't you let it go and just be the new you once the Holy Spirit just breathe something new in you.
Psalm 23 is the most stunning, amazing portion of Scripture when you take this through the cross in what Jesus has done for you. The Lord is my shepherd. I can't control the boundaries of my emotions. I can't control the boundaries of what my addictions and my actions. But He's got the rod and the staff. He's my shepherd. And I'm not going to desire anything else but Him. He makes me lie down in green pastures, not rip up, stain, yuck. He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul. Your soul is being hacked at, ripped at. You soul is being abused by the people around you. And this and this emotions is mine, etcetera. It's getting into your heart.
So you're walking through the valley of the shadow of death. Death is a continuum. It doesn't mean just physical death. It means death to your emotions, death to your sex life, death to your marriage, death to your manhood, your womanhood, death to your relationships, death to this ability even enjoy God. It says this valley of the shadow of death, I fear no more evil because He's with me. He's with me. Your rod and Your staff comfort me. He's guiding every step now. You prepare a table before me in the presence of mine enemies. There's enemies everywhere. People who remember what I was and what I did and they're against me and they come, the very presence of my enemies, I'm a new creation and the blessing and the favour of God is all over my life. My cup runs over. Your goodness and mercy follow me all the days of my life. Who? You, you broken ex-person that's healed and restored. You that's going to be real and final.
God touch you in a special way. You who's not going to just try to make excuse for all the things you did wrong. Come on! Let's just want to go. Let you be. Some of you guys and your dads. Dads represent God to their sons and daughters. Cut the umbilical cord and let the new father. Whatever it is. Whatever it is. Holy Spirit has a way of bringing restoration. He restores my soul every day, every relationship. Oh, when someone gets restored. Talk about how to do business, how to do family, how to do marriage, how to raise kids, how to live life. It is this most incredible thing when this broken heart is healed. It works. It's loving and laughing and healing and believing and succeeding and earning and enjoying.
Well, you know, life is hard and then you die. Well, how's that working for you? Jesus came to give me life. He came to give me life around all my failures and guilt and shame. He came to give me life with all those who've been betrayed. How does He do that? He restores my soul. Every day there's a refreshing. Something goes on on the inside of me that makes me live and alive and grow. And people around you might not follow you. A thousand might fall for that lie at your side. Ten thousand might fall for the stupid stuff on your right hand. Why don't you get up and live it up? Why don't you just get up and enjoy Jesus? Get up and live that life you've always dreamed about and stop letting anything from your past change you. He restores my soul.
Father, I pray that this message would be an incredible healing bond to every person that listens. That Father, we'd let go all the things that we're forgiven for anyway and there will be no residual. That we'd live this new life.
And for those who don't know You yet Father, I pray they would just right now say:
Jesus, come into my heart. I choose You. And start this incredible journey. I pray this in your wonderful name, amen and amen.