Summary: How to overcome my character weaknesses
The Character Challenge (part 2)
I. the impact of character (review…)
1. I can never ________ ____________ my character.
2. Looking at my character strengths reveals my ____________.
3. Looking at my character weaknesses reveals my _________.
II. how to overcome my character weaknesses:
1. Fake it!
(wear a mask and pretend that everything’s cool)
(Jesus)“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men’s bones and everything unclean.” Matthew 23: 27
"Every man alone is sincere. At the entrance of a second person, hypocrisy begins." Ralph Waldo Emerson
2. Force it!
(depend on my will-power to fix what’s broken)
(Paul)“I don’t understand myself at all, for I really want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do the very thing I hate… But I can’t help myself, because it is sin inside me that makes me do these evil things…It seems to be a fact of life that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong... Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin?” Romans 7:15, 17, 21, 24 (NLT)
3. Faith it!
(connect spiritually, allow God to repair and replace)
“What happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely. Legalism is helpless in bringing this about; it only gets in the way. Among those who belong to Christ, everything connected with getting our own way and mindlessly responding to what everyone else calls necessities is killed off for good—crucified. Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit, let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts, but work out its implications in every detail of our lives. That means we will not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us were better and another worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original.” Galatians 5:22-26 (Message)
three character keys to meditate on…
A) Character is a byproduct of my spiritual relationship.
He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard…
B) Character is developed by choosing the Holy Spirit.
Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit…
C) My character is greatest spiritual responsibility.
That means we will not compare ourselves with each other…
Scripture passages from the New International Version unless otherwise noted.
Digging Deeper @ Home Church: character
1. Who is historical man or women of character whose life serves to inspire you? Why?
2. Spend time praising your Father in prayer and/or song for His faithfulness.
3. When it comes to artificially producing godly character, are you more likely to fake it or force it? Why?
• What are some of the negative drawbacks to living this kind of life?
4. Read Galatians 5:16-26.
• If we are made alive by the Spirit, why do we still struggle with sin?
• What does ‘living in the Spirit’, and ‘keeping in step with the Spirit’ mean (in practical terms)?
• What are some ways that you can see how God’s Spirit produced His fruit in your life?
• In the area of your character that seem to be lacking, what is a word or phrase that you want to take home and meditate on?
5. Pray for one another.
2004, Jeff Christopherson, The Sanctuary