by James Merritt

This content is part of a series.

Empty Your Suitcase (4 of 4)
Series: Lost Baggage
James Merritt
Matthew 18:12-17


1. If I have ever done a series of messages in my life that struck home, hit a nerve, scratched an itch or met a real felt need it is the series that we are concluding today that we have called ''Lost Baggage.'' As we have said repeatedly, everybody has baggage. Even if you grew up in what you would consider a perfect environment, that environment itself may have loaded you with baggage.

2. What kind of baggage do people carry? Many times it's relationships baggage. Maybe a failed marriage in your past. Maybe you had sin in your life, or were the victim of sin in someone else's life. Maybe your relationship with your children, or your parents, or your relative or in-laws. Something with someone just isn't right, and because you've never fully dealt with the issue, it hangs on you like baggage.

3. Then there is cultural baggage. The government has been unfair to you. Or work baggage. You didn't get the promotion you wanted, or a project you worked on for months was rejected, or maybe your boss simply doesn't like you. And all of the emotions around these issues, from bitterness to anger to resentment to despair to unforgiveness, is a suitcase you carry with you each and every day of your life.

4. In this series, we have dealt with the baggage of a bitter spirit. We said if you are going to lose your baggage you've got to learn how to forgive. In fact, lost baggage always involves forgiveness. No matter what else you do, you will never lose baggage in your life unless and until you are willing to forgive.

5. Then we dealt with the baggage of a judgmental spiritual. Unfortunately, the church as a whole and many people inside the church are too quick to judge others on the outside of the church. One of the reasons why people who are far from God don't want to come to church is because they feel they will be walking into a very judgmental place. We made i ...

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