How To Deal with Family Drama| Sandals Church

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Yes. Man, I’m super glad you
guys are here today, so glad that you came. And if you’re a family member
that’s been invited today, I apologize. Today we’re talking about family drama. Who’s had family drama? Yes, if you’ve got no drama,
you’ve got no mama, amen. (congregation laughing) That’s the reality. That’s the reality. Look man, we deal with drama at work. We deal with drama at school. There’s something about family drama that just makes it just that
much harder to deal with. And let me just say this, if
you’ve never had family drama, it’s coming, amen, the rest of us. It’s coming. You just haven’t lived long enough or you’re just total avoidant. So let’s talk about why
family drama is hard. And I’m not saying I’m an
expert but I do think I’m right. (congregation laughing) I don’t know why you’re laughing. All right, why is family drama so hard? Number one, expectations, oh my Lord. We have expectations for
our parents, siblings and add in there, and spouses. Couple years ago, I was
out to lunch at a Denny’s and don’t judge, but I was at Denny’s and there was this old lady
reading a romance novel. And she was reading this romance novel. You ever see these novels, the
book, the guy has long hair and his chest is out and he’s
riding a horse or a dragon, you pick. And she’s like 90 years old, man. And she’s reading this
book and she’s reading and she’s looking at me and she’s reading. I used to have long hair. And I’m like, it’s getting weird. And so finally I said, can I help you. And she said, “Do you mind
if I gaze into your eyes?” (congregation laughing) I was like, gaze away. What am I gonna say? And it was just awkward. I was thinking this poor
lady’s gonna go home to her 95 year old husband
who’s not been on a dragon ever. And you just have these
unrealistic expectations. And now some of you guys
you’re getting engaged and that’s like a whole
theatrical production because you saw somebody
did something on Instagram. And we just have these
huge level of expectations, and especially for our parents. Let me just tell you this. When you’re a kid, you think
your parents have the answers. And then when you become a parent, you realize you have no answers. You don’t know what you’re doing. The first infant I ever held was my own. That’s not a good way to start. Guys, volunteer in kids ministry. Start practicing, not with your
own kid, but somebody else’s that you just have for an hour, amen. All right. But we have expectations. And so a lot of us get hurt because we go into these relationships
expecting our mom to be this way, our dad to be this way or
mother-in-law to be this way or father-in-law to be this way. And we have these huge
expectations and we get hurt. Next, this is so true. Emotional intensity. If you’re freaking out on the
freeway, that’s a you problem. But when it’s your family,
that’s a real problem. Like if you’re on the freeway
and somebody cuts you off and you’re like, I need to
follow them all the way to work to discuss this, you need counseling. But when it comes to your
marriage, it matters. It matters. And those of you who don’t have kids yet, you lie to yourself. When I have kids I’m gonna lie right now is what you’re doing. Because you know why? The kid’s not real and you really don’t care yet. The kid’s this made up thing. And then one day you get a real kid and you’re like, oh my
gosh, I really care. I’m gonna puke, I’m gonna poop. I don’t know what’s gonna happen. Because it matters. When you’re fighting with
someone that you love, it’s intense because you love one another and you care for one another. I can read all kinds of
books about how to listen to your wife, how to not freak
out, not how to spazz out. As soon as my wife’s
like, “We need to talk.” I’m like, blah! Because I get all upset
because it matters. It matters. It’s real. And so literally somebody,
Jesus Christ himself could be standing next to you, you need to not respond that way. You’re like, listen, Jesus. Because it’s very, very real
and it’s very, very personal. So there’s an emotional intensity. So just understand that. When you’re fighting with
your spouse, when you have a disagreement with your
mom, your dad, your brother, your sister, it matters. That’s why it’s hard. Next, I wish this wasn’t true but it is. The power of negative memories. What is it with us? You could tell me you
love me every single day and I will never remember
you saying that or your name, but you’re like, I hated your sermon. I’m like, I know you forever. Isn’t it amazing that
most of us our memories from our parents are
just negative memories? Our memories from our siblings
are mostly negative memories? There’s something that
happens when we feel like we’re being attacked
or we’re being criticized or something bad is happening to us. We just lock that away forever. And so when you’re dealing with family, you’re not just dealing with the moment, you’re dealing with all the bad moments. And so when Tammy and I are arguing because she’s slow to repent. When we’re arguing, it’s
not just me and her. It’s me, her and all
the stupid Matt Browns for 20-something years of marriage. And they’re all in there and
she remembers everything. She has no idea what
I’m gonna do on Tuesday but she knows what I
did Tuesday 27 years ago when I said something dumb. Just know that. And parents, you gotta know this, man. When you have a negative
encounter with your kid, you gotta deal with it. Because they’re not gonna forget it. We’re on vacation, parents,
you ever just decide, yeah, I wanna take our kids
on vacation, then you do and you’re like, why did we
take our kids on vacation? Did we need more stress, more misery? So we took our kids on vacation
and maybe it’s just me, but dads, I lost it. I know it’s hard for you to believe ’cause I’m so much like Jesus. (congregation laughing) I don’t know why you’re
laughing, that hurts. Dads, I lost my mind. I lost my mind. And my super power is I turn
into the Incredible Hulk. And I literally went crazy on my son. And this is how I know I went crazy. Because as I was lunging
towards my son, my wife dove, she dove, she was gonna
sacrifice her life for her son. She dove in the middle
of us and yells out, “Don’t do anything you’ll regret!” And I said, I will not regret
anything I am about to do. See, those are dads. They’re like, oh yeah, I been there. But you know what I told my son afterwards when I apologized? I said, I’m so sorry for
what I did and how I did it. I said here’s the thing that bothers me. 20 years from now, you’ll not remember one of the good things we did on this vacation but you’ll remember dad
turning into the Hulk. And that bums me out because this vacation
has been robbed from us. That’s the power of negative emotions and negative encounters. And literally, you can
have a great marriage and you get in one fight, you’re like, oh my gosh,
it’s destroyed forever! Because they’re powerful. Next, the embarrassment
over sin and mistakes. Like some of your families,
they’re just not real. Do you know how many funerals
I’ve done where kids find out their parents were
married to other people? Like, my dad was married, he has 27 kids. Whoa, what happened? And so what we do
oftentimes in our families is we don’t deal with the embarrassment. We don’t deal with the sin
and we sweep it under the rug. And this is different
for all kinds of families for all different reasons. And it matters what ethnicity you are. If you’re a white person,
man, you’ll go on Oprah for 10 bucks to throw
your family under the bus. You’re like, uh! But if you’re from another
ethnicity, some families, man, you don’t poke the bear. You don’t do that and we just pretend that nothing ever happened. And we just sweep that under the rug. So you go around trying
to, I go to this church and our vision is to be real. They’re like, you need to knock that off. You need to stop that right now. Our vision is to be unreal
with ourselves, God and others. Things happen and they’re embarrassing. Next, there’s a difference in age, upbringing and perspective. You know the family’s the only place where you have four year
olds and seventh graders that hang out? There’s no other place in the world. We don’t even do that in school. But in the family, you
can have different ages literally you go to different schools. And now we have this thing
called blended families ’cause that’s fun. And so we have blended families,
we have second families, third families, we have
all this stuff together, and then we have generations. We were going through some
family photos and my kids they always laugh at our pictures way back in the olden
days called the ’90s. (congregation laughing) And my kids are like, “Oh my
gosh, dad, look at your photo. “Look at your face!” (laughs) (congregation laughing) Well, let me tell you
something, young people. We didn’t take 1,000 pictures (congregation laughing) and pick the perfect one. Somebody just snuck a
photo, didn’t tell you and then put the film in the
refrigerator for a month. And then you collect it all
together and you take it to Walgreen’s and some
weirdo you don’t even know looks at them first. (congregation laughing) And then hands them to you in an envelope. (congregation laughing) Our photos are real. We’re like (grunting). (congregation laughing) It’s just different. It’s different. You can’t imagine. Well, why didn’t you just delete it? It was film! (congregation laughing) You can’t delete it, man. And let me just say this. If you don’t deal with
your family drama now, your drama will deal with
you when you least expect it. You know I was saying
this in all my sermons. I said I’ve done funerals where
we had to call the police. And one of the guys volunteering
for security told me that he works military
funerals and he said he doesn’t even know how many
times a fight breaks loose over who gets the flag. Can you imagine that? Do you know why all that hurt,
you’re saving that for later. And it comes out when we grieve. And that’s what happens
in Genesis chapter 50. If you feel bad about your
family, read the Bible. You’ll feel so good. Parents, if you’re like
I’m a terrible parent, read Genesis 4. They got two kids, one kills the other. You’re like, okay, well,
we just got one in jail. We’re not doing that bad. (congregation laughing) And it gets progressively worse, each family, each generation. It gets so bad, in Noah’s time, God’s like, we gotta start over. It’s that bad. We get to Genesis 50 and
we get the promise family, the family of Abraham,
the family of Isaac, the family of Jacob. This is the family that creates
the family called Israel. But they’re jacked, they’re messed up. And so Jacob who’s name
literally becomes Israel because all of his sons become
the 12 tribes of Israel, man, he’s like the worst. And he has all these issues. And he dies, and listen to me, parents, he didn’t help his children
through the issues. And so they saved it for his funeral. In chapter 50 verse 15 it says, and now that their father was dead, oh my gosh, grief is
bad enough on its own. It’s even worse when you
have to deal with drama. And now that their father
was dead, Joseph’s brothers, they became fearful. They said, Joseph will show
his anger and pay us back for all the wrong we did to him. You see, here’s the situation. Joseph’s the little brother. How many of you guys had little
brothers or little sisters? Raise your hands. You ever do things that
you’re not proud of? Like for example, when
I was in seventh grade, I thought I was gonna be a hair stylist. (congregation laughing) Don’t laugh. I was gonna be a hair stylist. And so I practiced on
my dog a couple times. I got some dog clippers. And then I practiced on my little brother. (congregation laughing) It’s not a good moment. It’s just not a good moment. Thank God he’s not like the king ’cause I might be getting
haircuts every Friday. But Joseph didn’t get weird
haircuts from his brothers. They actually cut him off from his family. They saw Joseph coming while
they were working in the field and Joseph had a fancy coat
that his dad had bought him. He wore that everywhere. He showed up, they said, look, here comes the little brother. He’s a little snot. And they plotted against him to kill him. 10 of the brothers wanted to kill him. One of them said let’s not kill
him, let’s wait till later. They end up selling him. They trafficked their own brother. They sold their brother into slavery. And they sent him to Egypt. He doesn’t speak the language,
he doesn’t know the culture, he’s never eaten the food. He’s literally a slave
in a foreign country because his brothers sold him. And they took that fancy
coat and they cut it up and they poured animal blood on it. And they took it to their dad and they said, Dad, an
animal killed Joseph. You feeling better about your family? Some of you are like,
nope, that’s my family. That is my story. So they’re afraid he’s gonna pay them back for all the wrong he did. ‘Cause here’s what happened. They sent Joseph off to Egypt as a slave and he became the second most
powerful person in Egypt. God blessed him. And in Israel, there was a great famine and they were starving. And literally Joseph and all his brothers and their father came to Egypt because there was no food in the land. They were gonna die. And the brother they
sold and left for dead is the brother that fed
them and watched over them and cared for them. But now they’re like dad’s
dead, he’s gonna kill us now. So they sent this text message to Joseph. (congregation laughing) Hey, before our father died… Well, I said it wrong. Before your father died,
that’s interesting. He instructed us to say to you,
please forgive your brothers for the great wrong they did to you, for their sin in treating you so cruelly. So we the servants of
your God, your father, the God of your father beg
you to forgive our sin. Underline this. When Joseph received the
message, he broke down and wept. Sometimes the path to healing is weeping. Some of you been hurt, some of you been hurt. And I want you to know that
if you’re ever gonna heal, you might have to hurt a little bit more to get to the other side. In every service that I’ve
preached this weekend, at some point somebody
gets up and walks out ’cause it’s too much. Look, I don’t know what’s
happened in your life but I know this, that if
you want Jesus to heal it, you need to sit in it for a second and hear what God has to
say about your problem. He broke down and he wept. And then his brothers came and threw themselves down before Joseph. They said, look, we’re your slaves. You’re like, well, I’d
forgive my mom and dad if they became my slave. But Joseph says, he says, don’t be afraid. Don’t be afraid. He says, am I God that I can punish you? I want you to know Joseph
didn’t live in America. There’s no bill of rights. His brothers don’t have any rights. They’re not even citizens in Egypt. Joseph can literally hang his
brothers from their ankles and watch them starve in the streets. And the Egyptians don’t care. But he says, am I God? Am I God to punish you? He says, you intended to harm me, but God intended it for good. You see, some of the
worst things in your life are gonna lead you to the
best places in your life if you let God handle it. He brought me into this position so I could save the lives of many people. He says don’t be afraid. I will continue to take care
of you and your children. And so he reassured them
by speaking kindly to them. You know why? It’s not just what we
say, it’s how we say it. He could’ve been like, I
won’t kill you, I promise. He said, guys, I’m not gonna kill you. We were young, you were stupid. You tried to hurt me, but God
meant it not just to save me but to save us. So to deal with your family drama, I wanna challenge you
to do a couple things. Number one, I wanna
challenge you to do your part to bring healing. You see, some of you
today you’re asking God to fix your family when God is calling you to face your family. That’s what we do. Oh God, fix it! Some of you right now in church, you’re throwing Jesus
grenades at your relatives. Oh, I hope they hear this. (congregation laughing) Write down point two. Stop trying to bomb your
family with the Holy Spirit and listen to what Jesus has to say. This is one of the most bizarre passages in the gospel and many of you’ve read it and never thought about what it means. Someone called from the crowd. It’s a Jesus rally. They’re wearing make
Israel great again hats. (congregation laughing) “Teacher, please tell my brother “to divide our father’s estate with me.” So dad’s dead, very similar. Brothers are fighting, very similar. And somebody calls out from the crowd, “Hey, Jesus, fix my jacked up family.” And Jesus says, who made me judge over you to decide such things? Isn’t this interesting. Jesus is the judge of the world and he says you deal
with your family crap. Whoa! He just lobbed a Holy
Spirit grenade right back. Look, if you want God to
intervene in your family, maybe you need to learn
what Jesus wants you to do. Quit praying to Jesus. Actually pick up the phone
and call your family member. Say, I’m sorry. I just talked to somebody
last service, 72 years old. She said, “Pastor, I’m
gonna call my daughter “as soon as I get home
’cause we haven’t spoken.” And she said, “That’s not right.” Quit praying for your daughter
and call your daughter. Quit praying for your mom, call your mom. Quit praying for your dad, call your dad. And just say, look, man, I’m
sorry that this has happened. You see, Jesus doesn’t fix families when we sit in fox holes
waiting for God to move. So we’re in this series
called Relational Remix where we’re looking at the enneagram. And the enneagram divides us up into nine different personality types. We see the world differently, we deal with the world differently and we deal with drama differently. And so here’s the thing. Some of you are like, well, I wonder what my mother-in-law is. She’s jacked up, what could she be? Unhealthy, that’s a given. (congregation laughing) Well, let me tell you something. Instead of trying to figure
out what number they are, I want you to figure
out what number you are ’cause I don’t know how
they’re going to deal with their problems,
but Jesus wants to know how you’re gonna deal with your problem. Stop running around
waiting for somebody else to get it right. You gotta get it right and
say, how do I handle this? So I want you to do your
part to bring healing. So as an eight, I always
start with the eights ’cause you can handle it, amen. You’re like bring it on,
challenge me, Pastor. (congregation laughing) Your challenge is I love you. You don’t run from
problems, you run at them. But here’s the problem, you
gotta deal with the issue but don’t destroy your
family, like problem solved. I’m like, well, they’re all dead. (congregation laughing)
Exactly. This is what I did when I was on vacation. I became an eight, destroyed my son. My wife was Jesus, “Don’t kill us all.” You gotta deal with the issue
but don’t destroy the family. Eights, what you’re trying
to do is protect your family. And oftentimes, the thing
that’s the most dangerous to your family is you. Peacemakers. And some of you are just
literally shrinking right now. I am never calling my mother. And you know why that’s so sad? Because you’re the very best in conflict. Listen to me, nines,
God’s given you a gift of seeing both sides. The problem is if you don’t use your gift, the eights are gonna fix
it and we’re all dead. (congregation laughing) We need you. Use your gifting, but here’s the thing. You gotta declare what’s right. So if you’re sitting there
with Joseph’s brothers and Joseph, you’re like,
well, what did Joseph do? He’s like, well, I got sold into slavery. You’re like, hmm. And what did you guys do? We sold him into slavery. Hmm. Who’s wrong? The 10 brothers. You can’t be like, well,
let’s consider every side. Sometimes there’s a right
and sometimes there’s a wrong and nines, you gotta declare it. Ones, scratch out the
word don’t, that’s wrong. And I know you’d notice. Ones, I want you to focus
only on the big picture or lose connection. How many of you ones noticed
that the brothers said before dad died, he told us. You know, like, I sniff a lie. I smell a little lie. I think you guys just fibbed. I know you men of integrity
who sell your brother into slavery would never tell a lie. Let me ask you ones what’s more important, whether or not they told the whole truth, nothing but the truth so help them God or restoring your relationship
with your jacked up brothers? You see, ones, you can get
so caught up in the weeds and you’re literally so caught
on everything they’ve said that’s wrong, eventually
you lose connection with the person you want
a relationship with. You can’t go through
life going foul, foul, foul, foul, foul. You can’t do that. You gotta look at the big picture. My son was in swimming,
and let’s be honest, he was never in danger
of being Michael Phelps. (congregation laughing) He’s in swimming. And let me tell you something, parents, pick a sport that exhausts your children. Swimming is a great sport
because if they rest too long, they drown. (congregation laughing) I’m just saying. It’s a great sport. It’s wonderful. You don’t have to go
anywhere, you just watch. And get a message afterwards. Your neck will be better. But my son, like a lot of
sports, if you don’t start when you’re super small,
you’re kind of behind. And so he hadn’t done it,
but eventually he got good at one event and he made the finals. He made the finals in this one event and it was a big, big deal. And he came in last place,
which was fine ’cause everybody in the finals gets an
award except for the fact that the ref disqualified him
for something he did wrong. And I went up to the ref. I’m like, he came in last. He says, “Yeah, but he
did something wrong.” I said, it doesn’t matter. He came in last. It’s not like you’re
penalizing another kid. And he says, “Rules are rules.” And you know my son quit
swimming and never went back. Ones, what’s the goal? Rules are rules. Well, do you wanna
maintain a relationship? Do you wanna maintain the connection? ‘Cause I got some stupid adult that made swimming unbearable for my kid. He came in last, it doesn’t matter. And then we got the helper, I love you. You’re like, I’ll solve it. I will help, I have super powers. Listen to me, helpers, sometimes
the best thing you can do is not get involved at all. I’m gonna talk to the moms. (congregation laughing) You’re like, I will make
them all get along, everyone. We’ll have a great family. (congregation laughing) Listen to me, moms, sometimes
brothers gotta figure it out. They gotta figure it out. If you solve all their problems,
you’re gonna screw it up. Step back and allow
others to figure it out. Because if you solve the problem, listen to me, the problem’s not solved. Threes, I love you but you gotta see the person and the relationship as the goal. You’re like, I shredded
them in that argument. (congregation laughing) You walk into family drama like a lawyer. We are gathered here today and I’ve been studying family law. Guilty, I say. And you just shred people. What’s the goal? Winning the argument? Threes, we’re gonna have Thanksgiving. What if you’re the only Trump
supporter in your family? You got your MAGA hat on. (congregation laughing) What if you’re the only
Democrat in your family? Let me tell you something,
there are idiots on both sides. Last Easter, we got idiots
on both sides of my family. We got a stupid Republican
and a stupid Democrat and they found each other
at the dinner table. (congregation laughing) It’s like they fell in love, ahh. (congregation laughing) Dude, I just wanted to eat my
ham and go into a Jesus coma for the afternoon. And I told my wife. I said, Babe, the idiots
have found each other. We are going home! Do you know why? They don’t care about each other. They just wanna lob political grenades. Ha-ha, boom! Ha-ha, boom! And they both go home, I
really shredded that person. The only thing you
destroyed was Easter meal. Listen to me, you can win
and still lose, threes. Individualists, I love you. You can’t cry all the time. (crying) Do you know why? Your tears, it feels like manipulation. Here’s what I wanna challenge you. Don’t allow emotion to
cloud your judgment. I thought we weren’t
supposed to judge people. Well, you haven’t read the whole Bible. You’re supposed to have judgment
and you need to disengage from your emotions a little
bit for you to have judgment. Five, observers, you’re exact opposite. I need you to cry. It would shock your family. (congregation laughing) Express your feelings as
you share your thoughts. Fives, you enter into family
conflict like a lab technician. Got your little lab coat
on, gonna observe you guys. Shed a tear, your kids
would literally be like, I didn’t know Dad did that. (congregation laughing) Sixes, I love you. You gotta share your fears
but listen to other’s words. ‘Cause what sixes do is you
attach meanings to words sometimes even before
the words are spoken. And like, I wanna talk about dinner. I hear what you’re saying, divorce. (congregation laughing) What, what just happened? Sevens–
(congregant cheering) Yes.
(congregation laughing) Yes, I love the sevens. Sevens, would you do me a favor? Would you work hard just to not give up if it’s not going well? You’re like I’m just
gonna get on I’ve gotta have relatives somewhere else. (congregation laughing) And they’re gonna be more fun. All right, so whenever
you go into conflict, I wanna challenge you, own
your part, own my part. If you come into family
conflict, self righteous, the righteousness of God
will never come about. Own your part. So if I sat down with Joseph,
Jacob and the brothers, let’s start with Joseph,
Joseph, what’d you do wrong? He’s like, nothing, they kidnapped me and sold me into slavery. I got that, but you do know
you were a little snot, right? Some of you parents you
constantly bust the older kid because they’re bigger and stronger but you don’t deal with the little snot. You got a little terrorist
running around your house. (mischievous laughing) (congregation laughing) Say Joseph, you need to be nicer. Joseph was responsible for arrogance. Jacob was responsible for preference. Parents, you wanna jack up
your kids, have a favorite. When our kids were
little, we’d have cereal. Put the cereal out. None of the kids would eat their cereal until they made sure that
every bowl was equal. (congregation laughing) Then they would always corner me. “Dad, who do you like the most?” (congregation laughing) “Who do you like?” I said, you wanna know. “Yeah.” I’ll tell you, come here. Your mother. (congregation laughing) That’s who I like the most. “I know it’s me, Dad, I know it’s me.” It’s your mom. (congregation laughing) Here’s the point where I’ve lost people in almost every service. If you want to deal with
family drama in a way that honors God, you
gotta honor your family. And some of you are like, nope. Listen, I love you, but if you wanna go to a church where you pick the
commandments you follow, then you’ve picked the wrong church. We don’t follow commandments
because they’re easy. We don’t follow commandments
because we agree with them. We follow commandments because
they’re commanded by God. The Bible says if you honor
your father and mother, things will go well for you and you will have a long life on earth. Let me tell you this,
parents, some of you right now are showing your kids how
to treat you when you age. I’m going in a home. Yep, you are.
(congregation laughing) You are. You know what you don’t
know until you know it? What it feels like to be old. You don’t know. You don’t know what it’s like. Well, they’re cranky. Well, you might be, too, when you’re 95. You wake up every morning shocked. (congregation laughing) Didn’t see that coming. (congregation laughing) All right, next, navigate
difficult family members. I want you to think about who’s the most difficult family member. And if you can’t come up with them… (congregation laughing) It might be you. That’s all I’m saying. Yeah, Pastor was preaching this weekend. He said every family has
a difficult family member. I don’t think we have one. And everybody’s like… (congregation laughing) You gotta navigate
difficult family members. And then you gotta avoid destructive ones. Some of you, you love
Jesus but you’re stupid. (congregation laughing) If you have a family member
that’s gonna kill you, you can love them from afar. How about for Christmas,
we exchange cards? You give me your address
and I’ll give you my PO box. (congregation laughing) Always be humble and gentle,
be patient with each other, making an allowance for
each other’s faults. Why, because of your love. People are irritating. So are you. So am I. I know that’s hard for you to believe. (congregation laughing) It’s true, it’s true. Look, if you’re ever gonna
have the family you want to, you gotta make an allowance. So next time a family
member ticks you off, just give them a Jesus dollar. Here you go, here you go. And they’re like, what is this? Your allowance. (congregation laughing) Navigate difficult family members and avoid destructive ones. Next, you gotta be ready to forgive. Some of you have been really,
really hurt by family members. I want you to imagine the family member that’s hurt you the most, they’re in church somewhere else today. You’re like, they’re not in
church, they’re going to hell. Well, let’s just imagine. (congregation laughing) Let’s imagine they’re in
church somewhere else today and the Holy Spirit, the
Spirit of God, the same Spirit that awoken you from your
sin, the same Holy Spirit that awoken you to your
faith in Jesus Christ, that same Spirit convicts that
family member who hurt you, who wounded you. And I don’t know what they
did to you, but let’s just say they sold you into slavery. Would you be willing to forgive them if they were genuinely sorry? Here’s what the Bible says. Instead, be kind to each
other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another just as God
through Christ has forgiven us. Do you know why you have
a relationship with God? Because you were really sorry
and you told God, I’m sorry. And this is how bad of
a thing that you did. What you did was so bad,
God had to kill his son, Jesus Christ, to save you. That’s how bad it was. That’s how dark it was. And yet, when you ask God to
forgive you, he forgives you and he punishes his son,
Jesus Christ, in your place. And you’re like, yep, I can’t forgive. Then maybe you haven’t been forgiven. Ephesians 4:31, do not grieve
the Holy Spirit of God. You know how we do that? With bitterness. Here’s how I wanna challenge
you to handle family drama. Don’t give in to bitterness
if it doesn’t go your way or the way you thought it should. And let me just say this, most family conflicts don’t go well. Do you know why? They involve people. And if you’ve forgotten
the first list of things, all of the things that I went through, you’re dealing with all those things when you deal with your family. Don’t give in to bitterness. The Bible says don’t grieve
the Holy Spirit of God. Get rid of all bitterness,
rage, anger, harsh words as well as all types of evil behavior. And some of you are like, I’m
not angry, I’m just righteous! Your face says you’re angry. Don’t grieve the Holy Spirit of God. When you give in to bitterness, you give up your intimacy with God. Think about that. There’s not room for both. There’s not room for
bitterness in your heart and the presence of God. So you gotta get rid of bitterness, you gotta get rid of rage,
you gotta get rid of anger, you gotta get rid of harsh words. And some of you say,
well, I don’t have that. And the Holy Spirit says, well, let’s look at your
social media profile. And you’re like, oh. We live in a world that’s bitter, that says harsh words
every day about everyone. That’s not for you if you’re a Christian. Tammy and I were out to
dinner and we were talking about some family drama that we’ve had. And on the way home, I
said, we gotta be so careful when we’re critical. We gotta be so careful
when we’re negative. And here’s why. When you’re critical
and negative of people, you’ve just invited the
devil into your life. Jesus is the Savior. The devil is an accuser. And when you find yourself accusing that’s not the Spirit of
God working in your life. Last point, I know some of you guys, you don’t have a lot of hope. And I know that family issues
are so sensitive for you. I want you to know this, God is with you. You have a whole family in
Heaven you’ve never met. Did you know that? You have a family in Heaven that’s praying for you right now. They’re on their knees for you right now. They can’t wait to meet you
right after you hug Jesus and you walk through those pearly gates. You have a family in Heaven
that is devoted to you forever and they see your hurt,
they recognize your pain and they’ll never give up on you because they’ve been changed
by the love of Jesus. But right now, you’re walking in the midst of pain and heartache. And some of these people
that have hurt you claim to be Christians and
it doesn’t make any sense. I don’t want you to try
to make sense of it. I want you to trust, write
this down, God in the process. You don’t think there were moments where Joseph said this
doesn’t make any sense. Joseph literally was sold
into slavery then he got sent to prison because he did the right thing. He did the right thing. And there’s all that time in the prison. There’s all that time trying to learn a new language, trying to learn a new culture. There’s all that time where
he thought God had given up on him and here he is the
second most powerful man in Egypt and he says what
you intended to harm me, God intended for good. Romans 8:28 says this, God
uses all things to good for those who love him and are called according to his purpose. There is no evil that Satan
can bring into your life that God can’t flip to benefit your life. Trust God in the process. I wanna close today by praying over you and I know this is a sensitive thing. So let’s bow our heads and close our eyes out of respect for each other. But if you got family drama
that’s weighing you down, would you just lift your
hand, so I can pray over you. I want you to know right
now that God sees your hand, God sees your heartache and God loves you. Holy Spirit, I just pray
that you empower these people who’ve lifted their hands,
Lord, with strength, strength from Heaven to
deal with the hell on earth. God, I pray that you give
them the power to forgive, the power to love and the
power to be like Jesus in the midst of this family drama. Bring healing, Jesus. But, Lord, if healing is not in your will, I pray that they would have faith and trust you in the process. We pray that in Jesus’ name, amen. I love you, Sandals Church. God bless.
(congregation applauding) – Here at Sandals Church,
we really do believe that this vision of being
real can change the world because Sandals Church is a non-profit that operates from donations
from people like you because when you donate, your
money goes to creating places for people to be real all over this world. So man, I would love for
you to be a part of that. And you can make a donation
today by clicking the link on this video or going to So join us and join what God
is doing through this vision of being real and have a great day. (light music)


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