6-Week Series: Against All Odds


Summary: If you have a broken relationship with someone its because you have been offended or you have offended someone. This sermon gives practical help of what to do in each case.

TEXT: Philemon; Colossians 4

TITLE: A Fresh Start…With Others - A Message of restoring broken relationships

SERIES: Fresh Start

TOPIC: Reconciliation

OCCASION: Burnside Christian Church, January 25, 2009

PROP.: It’s important that you and I be reconciled to those with whom we have broken relationships.

INTRODUCTION: ILLUSTRATION: have a bag of dog food that has been labeled: GRUDGE

Sling it over your shoulder

Good morning! There is no Jr. Church today as it’s the last Sunday of the month.

The name of the sermon series we are in is called: FRESH START

We’ve looked at getting a fresh start with:

God - a message about repentance

Myself - a message about making wise choices

Today is probably the most sensitive message in this series. It’s the message in the series that is the most difficult to hear.

Today’s title for the message is: A Fresh Start…with Others - A message about restoring Broken relationships.


I want to start by giving you four facts about forgiveness:

1. Forgiveness is a process - it doesn’t happen overnight. It will take time.

2. Forgiveness is work - it isn’t easy to forgive. It will be difficult. Why? Your pain is real.

So why would I want to forgive? If it’s going to take time and it’s going to take work, why would I want to forgive others?


3. Forgiveness is necessary - Because it’s necessary!

Let me ask you a question…How many of you have ever suffered from a broken relationship of some kind? You’ve wounded someone…or you’ve been wounded because of what someone said or what someone did and the RELATIONSHIP you had with that person has never been the same! I think we would all agree we have had broken relationships.

Now here’s the painful part: How many of you want to try to fix the broken relationship?

There are no doubt people here today who have been deeply wounded by others. The scar is deep and never has quite fully healed. And if the truth is known, there are some (maybe you) who have NO desire to fix the broken relationship. Why would you want to fix the relationship? They hurt you. You don’t need them. You’re just fine. It doesn’t bother you.

But what you fail to realize is that you’re not fine. Ignored hurt comes back to haunt you. You will never be free. Never be free from guilt. You’ll replay the scene that caused the conflict over and over in your mind.


Jesus, in his loving way, invites us in this way (Matthew 11:28)

28"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

Some here today are burdened by the grudge you’ve been carrying. Someone has done you wrong and you have NOT forgotten about it. Carrying that grudge affects the way you live your life. You avoid that person. You feel awkward around that person. It affects the way you worship. It robs you of joy.

ILLUSTRATION: (put down the bag of dog food)

And I’m here to tell you…put down the grudge! Allow Jesus to remove the burden of carrying around the grudge.

That leads me to the fourth fact about forgiveness:

4. Forgiveness is just as much about me as it is about the other person.

When you’re able to put down the grudge…and allow forgiveness to take it’s place…your burden just got lighter!

God didn’t make us to carry the weight of the past, so we are going to make the choice to forgive!

Our text is found in the book of Philemon. We are going to be studying the entire book today. I think you’ll discover the truth of these four facts in the portion of the Bible we are going to be studying today.

As you are turning there, can I ask how your memorization of the New Testament books is going? Were you able to find the book of Philemon easy? Today is the last OFFICIAL Sunday for saying the New Testament books! I would urge you to go to the welcome booth after church today and say the new testament books to the people there and then sign your name so we can know how many said the books of the New Testament in order!

Philemon, are you there? There are two main characters that the book of Philemon is all about. Their names are Onesimus and Philemon.

The book of Philemon is not very lengthy. But it’s interesting!


Let me give you some background about the book of Philemon today.

*Philemon was a letter written to a specific individual. There are only three letters written to individuals

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