SEND ME | Working Notes | Sunday, May 5, 2019
SEND ME (2)
Okay, ready for this? I am sharing a bit of background here as I get ready for Sunday. Behind the scenes, as it were.
I’ve been working on this new two-part series called, “Send Me,” and it’s a humdinger. Not kidding. Can’t wait to preach Part 2 this Sunday. This message has been yanking my chain all day long every day for the last couple of weeks.
The BIG IDEA for the series is that being sent by God requires inner healing.
Let me back up and provide some context.
This message series, Send Me, flows out of the previous series, Your Harvest Is In Your Field. In Harvest, we closed with the command of Jesus, “Pray earnestly that the Lord of the harvest would send out (Gr. — ekballe: thrust, hurl or launch, fire like an arrow) laborers into his harvest.” Before we can find our harvest, we must find our field. And before we can find our field, we must be sent.
We need Jesus to “ekballe” us into our field. There is great power in being sent by Jesus. When he launches us into our field, we are fired like arrows into the bullseye—Jesus doesn’t miss his mark! And the force of his grace propels us straight and true.
This arrow metaphor is actually quite apropos for Freedom Life Church, for the “arrows into a circle” icon anchors our logo and branding. Take a peek:
The icon was created to reflect our motto: “Helping people find their way into freedom for all of life.”
The arrows represent helping people find their way, and the circle represents all of life, the world. We help people “know God” (arrow 1), “find freedom” (arrow 2), “discover purpose” (arrow 3) and “make a difference” in the world (the circle).
All of this has to do with being sent into the world. Which leads to the story of Isaiah, the central actor in our current series. Isaiah was sent into the world as God’s faithful prophet. No one prophesied more beautifully and precisely than Isaiah. He told more about the coming of Jesus than anyone. But before he could be sent, Isaiah had to be healed.
THE STORY OF ISAIAH
The simple idea is this: Isaiah could not be sent into his destiny until God addressed the inner issues that threatened his call.
Look at the story.
Isaiah 6:1–8 (ESV): In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train of his robe filled the temple. 2 Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. 3 And one called to another and said:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!”
4 And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke.
5 And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!”
6 Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a burning coal that he had taken with tongs from the altar. 7 And he touched my mouth and said: “Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin atoned for.”
8 And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here I am! Send me.”
Here’s a quick overview of what we will talk about on Sunday from this powerful story:
The sending requires inner healing. We all have the “go” embedded in our spirit (God has “set eternity in our hearts”) but we all inevitably face a “woe” (or, “whoa!”) moment.
Isaiah needed to be healed in relation to God (“my eyes have seen the King!”), to self (“I am a man of unclean lips!”) and to others (“I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips!”).
God qualified Isaiah: “Your guilt is taken away! Your sin is atoned for!” God addressed and healed the sin blocking the send.
Being sent by God requires inner healing. Before Isaiah could “go for us,” he had to be touched with a coal from the altar. Isaiah had to be moved from “Woe is me!” to “Here I am! Send me.” His guilt was a destiny blocker.
And this is true for all of us: our sense of worth (self-worth, worthiness) plays a huge role in our ability to fulfill our call. Nothing sabotages purpose like guilt.
You were not BUILT for GUILT!
WHAT IS INNER HEALING?
Inner healing is the healing of our soul. Our spirit is resurrected when we are born again, but the soul is still pulled between our spirit and body, which remains bent toward sin and death until the resurrection. This is why we must “walk after the Spirit” and not “after the flesh.” (Galatians 5)
Our soul is our mind, will and emotions. Inner healing flows out of our Holy-Spirit-filled-human-spirit into the emotions, the will and the mind.
1 Thessalonians 5:23 (ESV) — “Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
The Holy Spirit flows through the human spirit and heals the soul. We begin to be healed:
- In relation to God: this is mostly about breaking the lies we have believed about God and discovering the truth about our heavenly Father.
- In relation to self: this is mostly about breaking the lies we have believed about ourselves and rediscovering our true identity in Christ.
- In relation to others: this is mostly about breaking the lies told by others (intentionally or not) and breaking free from expectations driven by the fear of man.
DELIVERANCE & SPIRITUAL WARFARE
Also, notice that it was an angel who touched Isaiah’s lips and cleansed his sin. This highlights a reality that must not be ignored when pursuing inner healing: we live and struggle for freedom within a highly charged spiritual environment. Inner healing only happens through deliverance, through casting out evil powers that attack and torment the soul.
2 Timothy 2: 26 (ESV) — [That] they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.
However, Jesus is victorious over the devil through the Cross, and his victory is already ours!
Hebrews 2:14 (ESV) — “Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil.”
1 John 3:8 (ESV) — “The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.”
Colossians 2:13-15 (ESV) — “And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him.”
Luke 10:1-3 (ESV) — After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them on ahead of him, two by two, into every town and place where he himself was about to go. And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. Go your way; behold, I am sending you out as lambs in the midst of wolves.
Luke 10:17-20 (ESV) — The seventy-two returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in your name!” And he said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you. Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”
There is a spiritual battle raging around your destiny. Never forget that! But also never forget that Jesus is victorious, and you are victorious in him. Never forget it!
Want to be sent? Then, you must be healed. And inner healing is a journey, a lifelong process. You must get started now. Commit to pursuing soul health.