Pohutukawa Coast Presbyterian Church
Clevedon Presbyterian Church
Kawakawa Bay
Clevedon Kidz

The Love that Heals

May 16, 2021
Mark Chapman


Eph 1:9-23  God did what he had purposed, and made known to us the secret plan he had already decided to complete by means of Christ. (10)  This plan, which God will complete when the time is right, is to bring all creation together, everything in heaven and on earth, with Christ as head.  (11)  All things are done according to God's plan and decision; and God chose us to be his own people in union with Christ because of his own purpose, based on what he had decided from the very beginning. (12)  Let us, then, who were the first to hope in Christ, praise God's glory!  (13)  And you also became God's people when you heard the true message, the Good News that brought you salvation. You believed in Christ, and God put his stamp of ownership on you by giving you the Holy Spirit he had promised.  (14)  The Spirit is the guarantee that we shall receive what God has promised his people, and this assures us that God will give complete freedom to those who are his. Let us praise his glory! (15)  For this reason, ever since I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all of God's people,  (16)  I have not stopped giving thanks to God for you. I remember you in my prayers (17)  and ask the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, to give you the Spirit, who will make you wise and reveal God to you, so that you will know him.  (18)  I ask that your minds may be opened to see his light, so that you will know what is the hope to which he has called you, how rich are the wonderful blessings he promises his people,  (19) and how very great is his power at work in us who believe. This power working in us is the same as the mighty strength  (20)  which he used when he raised Christ from death and seated him at his right side in the heavenly world. (21)  Christ rules there above all heavenly rulers, authorities, powers, and lords; he has a title superior to all titles of authority in this world and in the next.  (22)  God put all things under Christ's feet and gave him to the church as supreme Lord over all things.  (23) The church is Christ's body, the completion of him who himself completes all things everywhere.



The Love that Heals

May 16 2021


May the Words of my mouth and thoughts of our hearts, be acceptable in your sight,

O Lord, our strength and our redeemer. Amen

Jesus speaking to those who would hear said these words:

Joh 8:36  If the Son sets you free, then you will be really free. 


This puzzled me for a long time

how does the son Jesus  set free

and what does it mean to be really free.


So the term free means to be set lose from captivity

taken out of chains

all those kind of connotations.

And in Jesus words it has a kind of completeness about it.

You will be really free.


And for years I’ve wondered what does really mean

and how does Jesus do it?


The apostle Paul wrote

“The good I want to do, I can’t do.”


It seems that he knows what he would love to be

he senses within him

something so very good

which I would call the God DNA

but it just doesn’t work out in his life.


Maybe we all sense this.

Something within that calls us to a higher purpose

that seems almost unattainable.

And so we often settle for a more mediocre life.


And yet at the same time we know it’s not unattainable.


I truly believe that you and I are spiritual beings

having a human experience.

That’s why many of us sense a longing to be with God

to be home

in the safety of God’s embrace.

To be known

truly known and truly loved.

I think that’s why the word home is such a powerful word

whether we know of God or not

we have within us

a longing for home.

That’s why I think programs on finding ones lost family

are so popular



The lost sheep longs to be found

because if not it will die;

the prodigal son wants to be home

because he knows there is life only in the Father’s house.


And this longing I sense is tied up in what it means to be free

as Jesus speaks of.

In other words to be home in God is to be free.


So a few more introductory pieces

and of course you know

it’s going to come back to the love message.


It’s got to.


When I look back to my first teenage

or young adult introduction to the gospel

and to Jesus

it was all a kind of a head thing

which you have to have as a teen.

We like things fixed.

Black and white.


And so I found myself in this group of teens

who I just assumed where smarter than me

and understood the whole Jesus story much better than I did.

The problem was at that age

we all had a degree of low self esteem

that hid behind a kind of bravado.


For me it was bravado and a guitar

which meant you could play and lead singing

and not have to get to involved with people.


I discovered too that I had a lot of underlying anger

from my childhood

which showed itself in stupid ways

as it does when you have to hide who you are.

In short

we came together into this group of church teens


Not whole

not free

rather enslaved to all kinds of negative emotions within.


But at the same time –an almost mystical

sense of this seeking God.

So it seemed there were these two forces at work in me.

One, that reminded me of the Divine

and the other the wounded child within

trying to survive.


And all of us were the same.

All of us to a greater or lesser degree

carry wounds which we in turn attempt to mask.

There is a book entitled, “Why am I afraid to tell you who I am?”

The point the author was making is

that while we want to be genuine and real

there is a fear that if people knew who we really were they wouldn’t like us.


And so what happens is that we come into the church

and I think this is particularly true at a young age

we come and we love being with a group of like minded people

people who are generally caring

and similar to us

but who like us, are nevertheless wounded.

And in our search for love and acceptance

we can do a lot of damage.


Then we become adults in the church still carrying those wounds that display themselves in

negative emotions like anger, jealousy, fear, arrogance,

cloaked hostility etc

and of course these are all potential sources of conflict.

We do a good job of masking them

most of the time.

The apostle Paul puts it this way

the human nature is at war with the Spirit of God within.


So how can I be delivered,

how can I be healed of the wounds

I carry that do such damage;

not just in relationships

but damage to mental and physical health as well,

set free from the wounds I carry within?


The solution could be as simple as this.


What if I could offer those wounds

wholly and without reservation to a lover

who would embrace those wounds and

as our mothers used to say,

kiss them better. There is a great truth in that!


Embrace those wounds

speak into those wounds

understand those wounds

cover them over with love.

Pour a trillion Divine kisses upon them

until all the pain was taken away?


Today I want to suggest that that is essentially what

the baptism of the Holy Spirit is all about.

It is the flooding of our being

with the love of God.

The apostle Paul writes:

God has poured His love into our hearts by means of the Holy Spirit

which is God’s gift to us.


Why would God want to pour His love into us

unless it was to set us free?


I know there have been all kinds of things written

by importantly spiritual people

and there are a number of list that are produced

that say, if you do this

and you believe this

and you get someone to do this

then it will all happen.


And maybe it does

but it occurs to me that it would be like

an arranged marriage, right?

Contract is signed, a dowry is paid,

certain conditions have to be met

and presto you have a marriage.


I’m not sure if that’s how a love relationship works.

When you’re falling in love

something in the other person moves you

some mysterious

un scientific thing starts to occur

and you are in love.


And you change and become open to the others presence.


I know a man who was struggling over his belief that the gospel was in essence so


and it was to his mind an intimacy with God.

It wasn’t popular with others

and he struggled over it.

Was he right in his thinking

when others were adamantly tied into forms and procedures.

With a kind of frightening god as well.

He recalled standing at the sink one morning alone, washing dishes

very torn and uncertain

but wanting separately understand

maybe even to be free.

He remembers how in this unholy

of holy places

it felt that a certain kind of warmth began to spread up through his body

a kind of inner embrace

that brought with it

a mysterious tingling

and tears of joy

as something within began to release him from

what he would come to see as a kind of captivity.

And he knew God was present in the fullness of God’s

love, a love that said, “It’s O.K.”

Be what I have called you to be.

And with it, the beginning of the cleansing of the wounds of his past.


Today is the day of setting free.

Whatever religious burden

has been dropped on you

whatever wounds you have brought here today

whatever feelings of inadequacy

in Jesus name you are not inadequate

in Jesus Name your wounds may be healed

today, the Son of God would set you free

and you will be free indeed.


Let us Pray


Now unto God the Father, God the Son and God, the holy Spirit, be all the honour and

glory, world without end. Amen

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