Truth & Relationships - April 30, 2023
Pastor Mike (00:00):
You know, we’re so afraid to have our egos bruised. We’re so afraid to be embarrassed. We’re so afraid to have our plans to work. We’re so afraid to be wrong and rejected that we push out what we need the most.
Hannah Hunter (00:13):
Hey, beautiful people. Welcome back to Sundays with The Gathering. I’m Hannah Hunter, the director of Reach here at The Gathering Place in Palm Beach Gardens. This week, pastor Mike brings us a message on the essential need we all share to have really loving and trustworthy people in our lives.
Pastor Mike (00:28):
Well, I thought at first we can start out by talk bringing two stories, um, and just to kind of get us in that framework. Uh, the first story you’re probably familiar with, it’s the Hans Christian Anderson story, the Emperor’s New Clothes. Um, and do you remember that story? The Emperor’s New Clothes? Right? We have this, this emperor that, um, was more concerned about, you know, um, getting the, the fanciest clothes and living in luxury at the expense of the people and, and the kingdom that he was supposed to lead. And what happens is we have these two swindlers that come in and they say, man, here we, we have this, this emperor man that, that’s just so full of himself, you know? And, and he, and he loves every pleasure. And so, and they, they give out this, this little scheme, and they said, Hey, you know what?
We can make some invisible clothes. And, and, and they’re invisible. Um, but they’re real clothes. And so, um, the only people who don’t see or appreciate the value of these clothes are these like foolish people. You know, ones that, that, um, that are actually, you know, not really competent, not really smart, but everybody else who has like this great intelligence who’s, who’s brilliant like you, o emperor and king, they can appreciate the value. And so the king’s like, man, I need to have the latest fashion. I need to have the latest thing. And so he, he dives in and he, and he’s, and he, you know, hires these, these guys. They put up their looms and they start working. And the, and the king’s officials come in to check on the status of the work. And all they see is like these empty looms just hanging there and there’s no material on it.
But they said, okay, they’re invisible though. And so they’re like, we don’t want to be up here. We don’t wanna appear foolish, right? So, yeah, man, they’re, they’re great. He’s doing great progress. And then finally, um, you know, there’s like, haha, the, the clothes are done. And so they call forth the emperor, and they, they go ahead and they dress them in nothing. And they go through the whole mimicking everything, like, ah, putting it on. Doesn’t that feel comfortable and great? And, and the emperor’s like, yeah, it does. It feels fantastic. And emperor’s so proud of his new clothes that, of course, everyone can see that the emperor’s not wearing anything, but no one wants to point it out. Why? Because they don’t want to appear foolish. They don’t wanna be embarrassed. They don’t wanna offend the emperor. And so the emperor goes through and he has this great big procession, and, and he, and he goes through and, and everyone’s a seeing the emperor, you know, not, not wearing anything, but no one dares to say it, except all of a sudden a little child, he points out and say, Hey, this guy is not wearing anything.
Does anybody see this? And everyone realizes that single moment that, that they’ve been tricked. But the emperor in his pride and his arrogance carries on as if nothing happens, refuses to listen to the council. So I’m sure you’ve heard that as, as a little kid. And if you didn’t, it’s always a fun story to, to come back to. The second story is from the Bible. Um, and it’s a part of a larger story, um, about King David. But we’re gonna jump into just the, the first part of this that I think is really important. It’s in Second Samuel chapter seven, verses one to 17. After the king was settled in his palace king, meaning King David. And the Lord had given him rest over all his enemies around him. He said to Nathan, the prophet, here I am living in a house of cedar. While the arc of God remains in a tent, Nathan replied to the king, whatever you have in mind, go ahead and do it.
For the Lord is with you. But that night, the Lord, the word of the Lord came to Nathan saying, go and tell my servant, David, this is what the Lord says. Are you the one to build me a house to dwell in? Have I I have not dwelt in a house from the day I brought the Israelites up out of Egypt. To this day, I have been moving from place to place with a tent as my dwelling. Wherever I have moved with all the Israelites, did I ever say to any of their rulers who I commanded to shepherd my people? Why have you not built me a house of cedar? Now then tell my servant, David, this is what the Lord Almighty says. I took you from the pasture, from tending the flock and appointed you ruler over my people, Israel. I have been with you wherever you have gone, and I have cut off all your enemies from before you.
Now I’ll make your name great, like the names of the greatest men on earth. And I’ll provide a place for my people, Israel, and will plant them so that they can have a home of their own no longer, uh, be disturbed. Wicked people will not oppress them anymore as they did at the beginning and have done ever since the time I appointed leaders over my people. Israel. I will also give you rest from all your enemies. The Lord declares to you that, that the Lord himself will establish a house for you. When your days are over and your rest with your ancestors, I’ll raise up your offspring to succeed you, your own flesh and blood. And I’ll establish his kingdom. He is the one who will build a house for my name, and I’ll establish the throne of his kingdom forever. I’ll be his father, and he’ll be my son. When he does wrong, I will punish him with a rod, wield it by men with floggings inflicted by human hands. But my love will never be taken away from him as I took it away from Saul whom I removed before you. Your house and your kingdom will endure forever before me. Your throne will be established forever. Nathan reported to David all the words of this entire revelation. So we heard two stories about two rulers and, and what can we observe?
We could see that both of these rulers, you know, they, they, they had some great power and influence. They could do whatever they won it, and they also had advisors in their lives. But the difference is, uh, the major difference is that David had this relationship with a person named Nathan. And Nathan was a trusted advisor, but not only just an advisor, but we can see that throughout the biblical account that Nathan was that truth teller or truth sayer in David’s life. Um, if you think about this, you know, king David, you know, fights off all his enemies. I mean, I mean, he has a, a, a radical ascent to the, to the throne. I mean, it, it’s incredible. And now everything is his. And David, you know, realizes that, you know, he has these huge palaces and and he has all the luxury. And he looks and he says, wow, you know, like, I haven’t really done anything back for God.
God has blessed me so much. I I probably need a big build, a big home. And, and so he says all the right things unlike our, our other king that we have in the Hans Christian Anderson story. But Davis says all the right things. And the prophet, at first when he hears it, he, what does he say? He says, do whatever plan is is in your heart. Go for it. You know, because I mean, it sounds great. It sounds right. Go, go ahead and do it. And then Nathan hears the word of the Lord. And the word of the Lord is quite different than David’s plans. The word of the Lord says, Hey, David, yes, I will establish you. I will make your name great, but ultimately, you know what? You’re not gonna be the guy that’s gonna build, build this, um, this temple for me.
You’re not gonna build my house. Your son will. And that could, could really hinder, you know, David’s, uh, hurt David’s, uh, ego. But what we see is that Nathan revealed the full counsel of God. Nathan comes up again in, um, in David’s life, and, and many of us are familiar with. This is when, again, David’s really doing well. But as people are out to war and, and when all the kings are supposed to be going out to war at this particular time, David decides to stay home. And we’re familiar, many of us are familiar with the biblical count, where all of a sudden David gets in eyes of a young, uh, eye his eyes on a young woman that’s bathing on the rooftop. And, and he desires her so much so that he arranges for her husband to be murdered. And he, and he takes her.
And, and what happens is we know that Nathan confronts the king so much that it pierces David’s heart. David realize that he sins against God. David has an opportunity to repent. And also, you know, we have one of the most beloved hymns that’s used in the church today, Psalm 51, which as you are familiar with those words, have mercy on me. Oh God, according to your unfailing love, according to your great compassion, blot out my transgressions. All because of Nathan was willing to stand up and speak truth to power to speak to David. Nathan comes up again in the third time in the Bible, and that’s in one king’s, uh, chapter one when there’s a plot about David’s son who, um, um, a a adja who actually has this plan to kind of overthrow and have his own kingdom. And so Nathan brings us up to be Sheba and bes sheba them, talk to David.
And so basically what happens is David appoints his son Solomon, to be the new king instead of his other son. And so he, um, and so Solomon gets anointed and then the, those that were following the other son, they, they all get disbanded. And so what we see about Nathan, Nathan was not only a prophet, but he was a blessing to King David. He was a close and trusted friend. He spoke truth to David even when times when the truth was difficult to hear. He was loyal in his service to the king, but more importantly, he was also loyal to God. And, and he was, and he was faithful to God’s words. And, and these attributes, um, of, of Nathan are what really solidified the friendship between David and Nathan. It was a very un unusual friendship because, you know, David was a man with such power, but Nathan had that place where he had the king’s ear, and he didn’t use it for his own advantage, but he always did it, um, used his position to speak truth to David that not only blessed and benefited David, but blessed the entire kingdom.
So the story of David and Nathan, it teaches us a lot of things, but one of the most important lessons that I can see in their relationship is the importance of having truth tellers or truthsayers in our lives. And, and we can see that even though David was a king, Nathan was able to speak the truth and, and it might have cost him his life, but he still did it anyways cuz he knew that that was his responsibility. When I think about our lives, when it’s time for us to, to grow and to thrive, and to be the people that God has called us to be, one thing that I see that’s missing in a lot of people’s lives is those, those truth tellers. You know, people who are not afraid to tell us the truth, even when it is painful or uncomfortable, if we’re really honest with ourselves, without people speaking the truth to us and people that we can trust and that can just, just be honest with us, what happens is we get easily deceived and we fall into sin.
If you think back in your life, how many times have, have you had those occasions where you know you made the wrong choice? You know, and you wish that somebody would’ve spoke up and said, Hey, you know, you’re, you’re, you’re going the wrong way. You’re, or, or maybe they spoke up, but maybe you just didn’t listen to ’em because you didn’t value the relationship or you didn’t trust them. I’m, I’m always reminded of what it says in Proverbs chapter 27, verse six. It says, wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses. You know, in, in this day and age, it seems like a lot of people are more comfortable with the kisses and, and this, the superficial relationship than those trusted wounds that become with a friend. You know, we’re so afraid to have our egos bruised. We’re so afraid to be embarrassed.
We’re so afraid to have our plans to, we’re so afraid to be wrong and rejected that we push out what we need the most. You know, Jesus himself was the ultimate truth teller, right? You know, he did not shy away from confronting sin or calling people to repentance. I mean, he confronted religious leaders, and he even told us disciples in John chapter eight, verse 32, he said, then you’ll know the truth and the truth will make you free. Yes, the truth is difficult to hear, but it is necessary for spiritual growth and also for our overall wellbeing. And so the question that I’m asking you is, do you right now have a group, I mean, not just one person, but I’m talking about several that you call, that you would call in your life, that these are, are truth tellers, people that you could trust, people that you could open your soul to and tell your craziest plans and that, and that you could be sure that you’re, you’re getting some sound counsel, some sound advice, because I wanna tell you something.
It is, it is quite scary to go out in this world alone and thinking that you have all the answers or that you can solve all the problems. And if you really want to experience life and everything that God has for you, you need these kind of truth tellers in your life. Here are some dangers about what happens when you don’t have those truth tellers in life. First of all, you make bad decisions. And again, if we look at every bad decision in our lives, usually, sometimes it’s like when we, when we resisted sound council, when they said, Hey, you shouldn’t hang out that person. Or, Hey, that’s not a good business to get into. Or maybe you shouldn’t change that employment, or maybe you shouldn’t move to that area, or whatever it is. Um, you know, when you reject that, you make bad decisions.
Another thing that happens to us is that oftentimes we get taken advantage of because, you know, we, we can’t see, we only see the one perspective. We only see the candy in front of us, and we don’t see the consequences. Another thing that happens a lot is that we live in a false reality. When we, when we’re not, you know, surrounded by people who speak the truth in our lives, it’s very easy to, to not get the information that we need to have a, a wrong perception of what’s really happening. And so many times we go through life, we do all these things by our own power, our own strength, by our own wisdom. And we neglect to say, Hey, you know what? I need some help. Which kind of goes to the fourth thing, is that when you don’t have truth tellers in your lives, you live a very isolated life because you’re carrying it all on your own.
And you don’t have the support from people that God has called you to be connected with. So what I’m saying is, I’m giving you a challenge. This is more than about just attending a church or believing in God. It’s talking about living in community. And one aspect of living in community is having people that speak to you. Because what will happen is that when you have these individuals, first of all, you’ll start experiencing some tremendous personal growth and development. I mean, they will stretch you. They, they, they will, they will, they will challenge you to do things that you didn’t think you could do because they can see in you what sometimes you cannot see in yourself, but also they help you to not be complacent. I think so many times why church sometimes can be so, the, the Christian life for many people is like kind of, um, mundane and just redundant sometimes is because they don’t have any truth tellers to keep their edge sharp.
You know, they kind of just go through the routine. They go through the emotion, the emotions, and they’re not allowed to transform their lives. And another thing that we see, um, I think that is, uh, really important about the truth, um, tellers in our lives, is that it also helps us to have integrity. It also helps us to, to have that consistency in our lives. And, and what we see, you know, right now in our world is that people are so angry when someone has a different opinion in themselves than what they have or, or tries to confront them, or God forbid, tell them they’re wrong. Okay? Like, you know, you tell somebody you’re going the wrong way. Whether, whether it’s by directions or, or what kind of food you’re ordering or whatever. Like, Hey, this is not good for you. Or, Hey, your, your plan might not work out the way it has.
People get all upset. And what we see is, is this because of this lack of just truth in the world. I mean, we see a lot of moral decay and corruption. No one’s here to challenge anything anymore. So in order for us to have people that can speak the truth in our lives, there’s some things that we need to make sure our heart is, is in check with. And I guess the, the first thing is to ask ourselves, am I willing to be vulnerable before another human being? And then also one, let’s take it one step further.
Am I really teachable and teachable’s a big thing? Because like, listen, as a pastor, you know, I, I’ve been, I’ve served several churches, right? And, and, and in every church you got some people that are hungry for the word of God. They’re, they’re, they’re hungry for, for God to speak to them. They’re, they’re hungry for God to lead them and guide them and, and show them something new or to transform their lives. And then there’s these other people that know so much, I mean, they can talk the talk really well, they can, they can speak the, the, the scripture and all that and, and, and they listen to a, a sermon by a pastor or a pastor’s just like, you know, yeah, that was not bad. I knew that. You know, or, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. You know, I hear that. But you know, I have a little another perspective on this thing.
And no matter what, what God is saying, it might be like a fresh word that God is speaking to the community. Their hearts are hardened, and they’re so used to just going through the motions, and they’re, and they’re really good at pointing fingers and judging everybody, but there’s no action in their lives because they’re not teachable. They think that they have already arrived, and now what they’re doing is like sitting at the finish line of heaven saying, okay, you know, we’ll see who’s gonna make it with me. And that, and that is not what God has called us to do. So I guess the question that we need to ask ourselves is, are we willing to let people, like really inside our inner world, you see fear wants you to keep ’em out. You know, fear says you, you’re gonna be embarrassed. They’re gonna use the information against you.
Um, you know, all the things, the head things that we say when we’re afraid to actually be vulnerable and confess our weaknesses. You know, sometimes fear tells us, just keep up with appearance and don’t show, don’t show anybody that you got that, you know, one junk drawer <laugh> or the junk closet. What or the, or that, or that, that other room that you just stash all your stuff in or, or those boxes in the garage that you didn’t unpack. Don’t, don’t show ’em that stuff. Show ’em you have everything all together. But here’s the thing I want you to consider.
You know, and, and first John, it talks about saying about how, how can we say that we love God? Who’s, um, that we don’t see when we have a hard time loving the person that’s right in front of us, right? If we can’t love the people that we see right now, how in the world can we love God? And so I would, I would use that same understanding and apply it to the truth telling. How can we really say that we’re gonna let God in and to the deepest area of our lives? And when we have a hard time just being true friends with people around us, that when we have a hard time of being vulnerable with people that are right in front us, when we have a hard time of letting people into our inner world. Now, I’m not saying just, you know, open the gates and let everyone in, but, but we do need to let people in.
There are people right now that God has placed in your life and, and they’re, and they’re there not just to hang out with you, not just to be your buddy. Not just to give you the attaboys, but there’s some people that God’s saying you need to bring them a little bit closer into your life. You need, you need to, you need to let these people allow to hold you accountable. You need to have let these people come in so that you can share with them some of the things you’re wrestling with, or whether it’s a challenge you’re going through in your family or personal life, or whether it’s something that maybe that God has called you to do, that you’re afraid to speak about it. And you need, and you need those close people to talk to and say, okay, here, you know what? This is what’s God’s doing in my life.
And again, if we can’t do it with the people around us, then can we honestly have these authentic relationships, this authentic relationship with God? And I, and I believe that if we don’t have it here among the Christian community, I don’t care how close you think you are to Jesus, there is a gap. And I want to challenge you to, to take that step and say, Hey, God, you know what, I’m, I’m willing to, to move a little bit forward. You know, I’m using the term truth teller. But it could be that, that title can be a lot of things. It could be a trusted mentor, it could be a coach, an advisor, a confidant, a true friend, or maybe just a brave voice. But I guess what, what really matters is do you trust these people? Do you have people in your life that you can trust and that you can be real and say, Hey, guess what? Um, I thought I was wearing some clothes, but I’m running around in my pajamas. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and I need some help. Do you have those people in your life?
Why do we, we need this? I think right now, you know, the one of the understandings of us, uh, of Christianity is that we can only give what we have received. And what this world is really lacking right now are people that are, that are in the place where they can speak the truth and love those two things together, holding, holding ’em in that holy tension of, of truth and love, holding it together. Why do we need this? Because first of all, if what is being said is untrue and unloving, then it’s, you know, basically it’s just another form of bullying in the world. You know, it’s, it’s just, it’s just attacking a person. And it’s not building anybody up, those kind of words that don’t have any love and don’t have any truth. They’re only out there to manipulate and use people and to dominate people.
But also, you know, if we’re just loving and not speaking the truth, it means that a lot of people will be misled. People will be hurt and not cared for. Um, because you cannot have real love without truth. And if a church doesn’t have truth and only has love, then what happens is it’s just, it’s just a cult. It’s just a club. There’s nothing to it. To call us more on the inverse. You know, if you’re, if you’re just all about truth and no love, um, then what happens is you, you have a community that, that thinks that they have all the answers and they stink at listening to other people. They, they, they can’t, they can’t hear it all. They’re not interested in hearing people. And so to be long on truth and short on compassion is, you know, to be sure that this, that your body’s just always gonna be small. It’s not gonna grow. You’re just gonna be this judgmental, critical people that always keep people out. But when we’re true and loving will result in a community of people who will be the mature body of Christ that will not only talk like Jesus, but but live like Jesus.
So, how we all agree that we need the Nathans in our lives, we need those truth tellers. We need those mentors and guides. But, but how do we cultivate those things? And then also, how do we become, first of all, don’t self appoint yourself a truth teller, okay? I just want to like say that, you know, don’t, don’t, don’t say, I, I was part of a Bible study once and this guy walked in and we we’re talking about spiritual gifts and, and, and he said, let me tell you what my spiritual gift is. And he goes, I’m a fruit inspector <laugh>. He goes, I go around in every church and I make sure that they’re, that, that they have fruit and, and their fruit is of God and all this stuff. And then this is what’s so crazy. Guess what his like, professional job was?
He was that fruit inspector for the Department of Agriculture. And he, and he like, so he shows me his badge. He’s like, I’m even deputized by the state. And this guy was like, just the meanest, most judgmental person. And he would like self deputize himself to be like, here, I’m, I’ve been sent by God to inspect the fruit in your life. And everybody just like stayed the heck away from him. So, so what I’m saying is like, don’t, you know, think that God has called you to be a fruit inspector, but what I wanna encourage you to do is to maybe, um, model certain behaviors that I’m gonna talk about. And maybe somebody will give you the incredible privilege to say, Hey will be my accountability partner. We be my prayer partner. Will you, you know, just, um, you wanna spend some time with me so I can share, I got some stuff going on and I need to, I need to share something.
Cause I don’t really have a lot of people to talk to. Wouldn’t that be nice to have that kind of ask? I mean, that, that’s what we, we want, right? We, we want to have, um, um, a relationship with Jesus that, that, that, that people can see that, wow, this is a safe person. And I guess that’s the thing you have to look for when you’re looking for those truth tellers, is look for somebody that has integrity, that there’s some consistency in their life, okay? And that they are mature, I think both spiritually and emotionally, you know, so you, I mean, like sometimes we, in churches, we, we go like the world, sometimes people outside the church, you know, really values those people that, that just, you know, are really nice and they’re the peacemakers and all that. And that’s really important. And then they say, well, and, and I like, I don’t need somebody who knows the scripture.
And then some people go, uh, churches, people go on the side of like, I just need somebody to know the Bible. So they think that someone has a, a high level of biblical literacy that they can quote scriptures and know all the stories and all that stuff that they think that they, you know, are, are better truth tellers. You need somebody that, that has both, that, that spiritual maturity and that, um, just emotional maturity, you know, whereas they carry themselves well, but they’re also, you know, spiritually and biblically rooted. You know, those are some people you need to look for also, um, somebody that’s trustworthy. So in other words, if, um, if someone goes to you and says, I’m only telling you this and I shouldn’t be telling all that. Stay away, stay away, stay away. You know, or, or, Hey, I got a prayer request that, that I wanna share with you about that they didn’t ask you to pray for, but I’m gonna tell you to pray for them anyways.
And I’m gonna tell you all the juicy gossip. Stay away, stay away, stay away. Look for people that you know, that you can see some maturity in their walk with God. Um, you can see it in their family, like, you know, and I’m not saying look for the, the per, none of us are perfect, I understand that. But, but you can tell like where the, that dynamics are, are healthy and good and where they’re not, and also someone that has a good, uh, reputation in the community. The next thing is, once you start seeing these kind of candidates and people that, that God has already placed in your life, um, focus on relationships, you know, is, is a person willing to be, you know, are they a person that actually has healthy relationship with others? Are they willing to have a, a relationship with you?
In other words, are they willing to be your safe friend so that you can be your true self? In other words, that you can be real with them and you don’t have to have any fear. Um, you know, and, and, and it’s kind of a person. So like in, in James chapter five, verse 16, it says this, it says, confess your sins to each other and pray for one another so you may be healed. So is this the kind of relationship where it is safe to actually confess some of your most embarrassing sin and that you could trust that in this relationship that they’re actually gonna pray for you? But the result of this is that there’s gonna be healing in your life, not just forgiveness, but healing change. Another thing about the relationship is that it has to be, um, about the person and not their position.
So there are some people out there that, that chase people with power, money, and position. And so if you’re, if you’re in a large room and you’re seeing somebody that is just, you know, they’re, they’re talking to you for the moment, but then all of a sudden when someone with, with more influence or power just says, Hey, you know this, oh, you know, I, I guess who walked in the room? Um, if someone is doing that, um, that, that’s, that’s a red flag. You, you don’t want that. And you don’t want to be that kind of person. And I know sometimes it’s easy to, to be wowed by, you know, I mean, cuz some people, I mean, some of you guys like dress so cool. I mean, and, and, and some people have a lot of cool toys down here in south Florida, and it’s, and it’s easy to be wowed and it’s easy to get distracted by shiny things that, you know, that, that do a lot of cool stuff.
But, but when it’s talking about relationship value, the person over the position and the stuff, and you gotta check your heart to make sure you’re not, you know, when you’re, when you’re, when you’re meeting with people, don’t look at their stuff, look at them. I remember like when I was in Moscow, you know, I had the privilege of of being the chaplain at the US Embassy, but it also, um, opened the doors for me to, to be the spiritual advisor to, to diplomats and people with a lot of power. And, um, and one thing that they were all looking for, they didn’t want somebody to see, you know, their titles, you know, and they didn’t want somebody with another title. What they were looking for was somebody that can see them as a person that they could, you know, trust the, the, the treasures of their soul with, and they can share and that, that we can grow together in God. You know, a friend of mine once told me, he said, look, he goes, you know, be weary of anybody who puts a bunch of titles on themselves, especially churchy titles. Now I know we have to have it because of our responsibility, but he said, he said, but remember Mike, you know, we serve Jesus with towels and not titles. And so we have to be careful to, to guard our hearts that we don’t fall into that.
I have a lot more to say about that, speaking the truth and love. But I, but I will just kind of summarize a couple of things, um, just to, to give you some things to think about and maybe dig on further. When you’re speaking the truth in love, remember to try to listen and understand before you speak the other thing, check yourself, you know, check your own words. Do you have some kind of anger? Is there something going on inside of you? Do you have an offense that’s going on? You know, check that out. Also, choose your words. And again, when you’re looking for people, you know, look for people that model this. You know, people that keep it simple, that speak with kindness, uh, because unfortunately we know with words, you know, once they come out, you can’t take ’em back. Also rely on God.
You know, there are gonna be times when God’s gonna call you to speak the truth in love. And I wanna encourage you to, to rely on God by praying before and after the conversation and then giving everything to God. So I put some things out there, I hung a a few things out there for you to possibly grab onto. And, and I don’t know what God is saying to you, what you need right now, whether you need to look at right. Take an inventory of your close friends, or do you have some close friends and say, do I have any truth tellers in my life? The other thing you gotta take a, a look at and say, okay, if I don’t, what, what’s holding me back? Why am I keeping everybody in our arms length? And then the other thing asking yourself, God, what do you need to do in me so that I can grow to the level of spiritual maturity that people will say, you know what, I need you in my life.
Because here’s the thing, all of you have something incredible to give, incredible to give you. You have treasures that are stored in you. And like as scripture says, they’re, they’re stored in these earth and vessels, but sometimes we project all this other stuff that we think is so important, and that’s actually what pushes people away. If you can like, let go of all the other stuff and hold onto those gifts and treasures that God has given to you, and let those things shine, I’m telling you, it will bless you and you’ll be such a blessing to others. So the vital relationship that we need to strive for for this week and in the, in the months ahead and years ahead is those truth tellers and that we too will be truth tellers. Let us pray. So loving God, we thank you for the relationship that we see in the Bible with, with David and Nathan, and we can see that it was more than just a prophet and king relationship. But for some reason, David trusted Nathan, even when Nathan spoke some hard truth, and also Nathan was secure in his own position, that he could speak the truth even was hard. God, our world, we lack that.
We personally lack that. So we ask you Jesus to come to do a work in our heart so that we can continue to, to, to grow and maturity and be those safe people that speak truth and love, that build relationships with no strings attached. But also God show us people in our lives that, that you’ve already put in our past to be our spiritual guides and confidants and mentors and coaches, and for those that we already have in our lives. God help us this week to do one act of kindness to say thank you to. We thank you Jesus. We offer this to you in your name,
Hannah Hunter (35:07):
Hey, beautiful people. This is Hannah Hunter. I’m the director of Reach here at the Gathering Place of Palm Beach Gardens. Thank you for joining us this week. We love getting to share our journey in Christ and community with you. And if you’re in the Palm Beach area, we’d love to get to connect with you in person at our Sunday Worship service at 1115. For more information about our community in faith, check out our website at the gathering place fl.org. Thanks for listening.