Step 4: Part 2 Examining the Inside of the Cup


“Life Change from the Heart” is a sermon series on how God changes us from the heart through the gospel. How does change from the heart happen? After we surrender our life to God, we start the process of cleaning the inside of the cup, our heart. We can’t change ourselves just by trying to clean the outside of the cup, meaning by trying to change our behavior. We have to first focus on cleaning our heart, which Jesus said is full of self-indulgence. So, step 4 is about examining our heart for self-indulgence so that we can start the process of cleaning our heart. It is critical to find the self-indulgence in our heart if we want to change our life. But, our spiritual blindness makes it difficult to find selfindulgence directly. There is an indirect way to find our self-indulgence, though. It is by looking for resentment, a more noticeable byproduct of our self-indulgence. So, one way we find self-indulgence is by examining our resentments and asking, “How might each of the following forms of self-indulgence be at the real root of the resentment: pride, self-pity, dishonesty, and self-centeredness?” As we do so, we will find self-indulgence. It is very important for us to take the time necessary to ask this question for every feeling of resentment we experienced. A lot of people find this too hard to do. But if you want real change, you should go through this process even if it takes months to complete. This is at the core of examining our heart.


This is a series about how God changes us from the heart. We saw that the fruit of the Spirit is a picture of a changed life—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. That’s the destination. The way we get there is by living in the Spirit. The Bible tells us what it means to live by the Spirit and Bill W. and Dr. Bob who wrote 12-step recovery program did a great job distilling it from the Big Big Book, the Bible. So, we are going to look at what it means to live by the Spirit as we look at the process outlined in the 12-step recovery program; and as we do this, we are going to do this from the perspective of its biblical roots just as the co-founders did.
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