Revive Our Hearts Podcast

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Dannah Gresh: Hey Nancy, before we dive into our program today, Nancy, check out my coffee mug!

Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth: Love it! In fact, I’ve got one just like it. It says—Heaven Rules! 

New from Revive Our Hearts. You know, I need every reminder I can get, every day of my life. Whether I'm starting the day with my cup of tea or going through the day . . . I need these reminders that Heaven rules! No matter what is happening, Jesus is still on His throne!

Dannah: Yeah, me too, Nancy. I need that reminder. That's why I'm so excited about our Revive Our Hearts Spring Sale. It's full of great gift items like this mug at a discounted price, that remind us that Jesus is still on His throne. But if you are going to take advantage of it, you've got to hurry because it ends this Friday!

Nancy: In fact, Dannah, I have sitting in front of me a whole box of items that are in that Spring Sale. I just want to pull out a few. There are some tea towels. I've actually got one of these in my kitchen. It says Heaven Rules.

Dannah: That would go great if you pair that with the mug and then you have a great Mother’s Day gift!

Nancy: And the candle. I love the candle. Heaven Rules . . . it's beautiful. It's fragrant. It's pure soy. Pink pepper linen and sandlewood is the scent. I lit that for the first time this morning. I loved having that in my home. There's a stainless steel water bottle. There's a journal. There's a number of books. Tell us about some of those books.

Dannah: What I'm excited about it the Mary Kassian books Growing Grateful and The Right Kind of Strong. But there are so many books in this sale.

Nancy: I have to mention one.

Dannah: What's that?

Nancy: It says it's by Robert Wolgemuth.

Dannah: I thought you might be attracted to that one.

Nancy: It's a great book called The Most Important Place on Earth: What a Christian Home Looks Like and How to Build One. This is one of the books I read when Robert and I were courting, because I wanted to find out what kind of husband and dad he was.

Dannah: That's one way to get into a man's head! If all men could write books, we could all make our marriage decisions so well.

Nancy: He was reading some of my books too.

Look . . . I just pulled up this wonderful, frameable print. It comes from the 2021 Heaven Rules calendar. This quote is: "Nothing in this world happens by chance. Nothing happens outside of His knowledge and control. He is the Creator and Ruler of all that exists. Heaven Rules!

I love having these reminders around my home. In fact, I want to show you one more thing. I don't know what you call this thing.

Dannah: What is that thing? I've forgotten what it is. I'm looking like a fifty-three year-old. It's what you put on the back of your phone . . . pop socket.

Nancy: Pop socket. Heaven Rules. I would like this on the back of my phone except it doesn't match the color of my case. I might have to get a new case because I like Heaven Rules everywhere around me. I need the reminder. It's a comfort to me—a reassurance to know that no matter what goes on in my life. It's what Robert and I say to each other over and over again. "Honey, remember . . ." We're watching the news . . . "Honey, remember, Heaven rules." We get a tough doctor's report, "Remember, Heaven rules." In the little things and the big things, this is just such a great assurance for our hearts

Dannah: Well friend, if you'd like some reminders like this for your heart, Mother's Day, Father's Day, preparing for your summer reading, there are all kinds of reasons to visit the Revive Our Hearts website today and check out the Spring Sale. After the program, just head over to ReviveOurHearts.com. Now, let’s listen to Revive Our Hearts.

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Dannah: If you’ve ever felt weighed down with guilt and shame, you know what it feels like not to want to tell God (or others) about it. Mary Kassian says you might want to change your perspective.

Mary Kassian: Confessing sin isn’t about salvation, it’s about sanctification. Confession is about applying the gospel. It’s not something we have to do as much as it is something we get to do!

Dannah: This is Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth, author of Holiness: The Heart God Purifies, for Wednesday, April 28, 2021. I’m Dannah Gresh.

Nancy, you fly a lot, don’t you?

Nancy: Well, I did pre-COVID.

Dannah: Did you ever take your car along with you on a plane trip?

Nancy: Uh, no.

Dannah: How about a pet elephant?

Nancy: Not recently.

Dannah: Unless you’re traveling on a huge military cargo transport plane, you can’t bring that much weight along. It wouldn’t be safe for the airplane; you’d never make it off the ground. If you did, you’d probably crash and burn!

Nancy: No kidding. What a great picture for what Mary Kassian was talking about yesterday on Revive Our Hearts. She said, "A Christian trying to live life without genuinely repenting is like trying to fly an overloaded airplane. It's dangerous and just not going to work."

Dannah: Here’s Mary, from a recent Revive Our Hearts conference helping us, as she puts it, “ditch the baggage” by recognizing the marks of genuine repentance, from David’s prayer of confession in Psalm 51. If you can open your Bible to this passage. Let’s listen together.

Mary: Genuine conviction . . . genuine sorrow . . . and the third mark of genuine repentance is genuine transformation. Confession that’s motivated by worldly grief depends on human effort for change. The attitude is, “I’ve got this! I’ll do better. I’ll try harder. I won’t mess up again. I’m so sorry. I’ll take care of it.” And there’s an element of self-sufficiency and pride in addressing the predicament. 

But a “sorry” that is motivated by godly grief runs to God and humbly relies on Him to take care of the problem. The attitude is that I cannot do this without God. “I need You, how I need You, God! Every hour I need You, my One defense, my righteousness. Oh, God, how I need You!’”

In Psalm 51, verses 9–13, David cried out: 

Turn your face away from my sins and blot out all my guilt. God, create a clean heart for me and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not banish me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore the joy of your salvation to me, and sustain me by giving me a willing spirit. Then I will teach the rebellious your ways, and sinners will return to you. 

David says, “Oh, God! Oh, God, please, please. I can’t deal with the problem of sin in my life. I can’t pull myself up by my own boot straps. I’ve tried, and it doesn’t work!”

“Create a clean heart for me! I need You! Renew a steadfast spirit in me. Help me abide in Your presence. Deal with this rebellious spirit! Give me a willing spirit. Then things will surely change. I will change, and my changed life will have a ripple effect on others. Sinners will return to you, oh God.”

If you’re ditching the baggage of sin in your life on a regular basis, you will inevitably change! You will be changed by the redemptive and transformative power of God because change is what repentance is all about. Repentance is a turn-around; it’s a change of mind, a change in one’s life, a change in thinking, a change in doing things my way to doing things God’s way.

And it starts with an admission that we are thinking the wrong way and acting the wrong way and that there are things in our lives that actually need to change.

  • Are you becoming more godly? 
  • Are you being transformed to be more like Jesus? 
  • Are you genuinely repenting? 
  • In your life, do you see the marks of genuine conviction, genuine sorrow, genuine transformation? 

Twenty-seven-year-old Ben Ogden and a group of friends were embarking on the biggest adventure of their lives. Ben had just finished passing the bar exam, and before he hunkered down at his new job as an associate at a law firm and got married and started having kids, he thought, I’m going to go on a big adventure! 

He and a group of his mountaineering buddies had dreamed of an Everest adventure for years, and they had spent the last year training and preparing for it. Spirits were high as they tossed all their climbing gear into the cargo hold of the small plane that would take them from Kathmandu, Nepal to the gateway to Everest. 

They watched out of the window as a crew member handed the necessary paperwork to the airport official. The loadsheet, which was part of the paperwork the airlines required for take-off, reported that the plane was a few pounds under its maximum load, so the plane was cleared for take-off. 

What Ben and the rest of the passengers did not know was that the take-off weight on the load sheet did not include the weight of all their climbing gear and equipment. To clear weight regulations, the crew had reported on the sheet: “No baggage.” If that plane had had no baggage, Ben would have made it to the top of Everest.

But, tragically, it crashed into the hilly embankment on a river just minutes after take-off—killing Ben and everyone else onboard. Investigators reported that the drag on the plane was greater than the power available for ascent. The plane had enough power to carry all the authorized weight. Surely it did.

But with all that unauthorized baggage, it just couldn’t get enough lift to clear the obstacles in its way.

Many of you are in the same situation. You’re carrying baggage that you shouldn’t be carrying. Maybe you’re on the verge of crashing. Maybe you already have crashed due to the sin in your life. Spiritually, you’re weak because you are burdened with sin . . . and you’ve gotten used to it. 

You don’t even feel it; you don’t even sense it anymore. It doesn’t convict you. You don’t realize it because you haven’t been taking the problem of sin in your life seriously. You’re dragged down; you’re not getting enough lift. Perhaps you haven’t confessed with godly sorrow. You haven’t genuinely repented.

Now, for the Christian, confessing sin isn’t about salvation. It’s about sanctification. We are saved; we are forgiven. There’s not a doubt about that. So we can run to the cross every day! Every time I see sin in my life rear its ugly head, I can run to the cross and say, “Jesus, I need You! I’m so sorry!”

When we confess, we recognize and declare the force of what Christ has already accomplished on our behalf. We claim the amazing mercy and forgiveness that became ours the moment of our salvation. Confession is about applying the gospel. It’s not something we have to do as much as it is something we get to do. We get to unburden ourselves, sisters! We get to do it!

Isn’t that amazing? We get to feel the load lift; we get to experience the cleansing. We get to approach God with confidence, and not with fear, knowing that we will receive mercy and find help in our time of need. (see Heb. 4:16) And nothing makes us more needy than the sin we wrestle with every day.

We get to feel the force of God’s love and forgiveness. We get to claim His power and His victory. We get to get rid of it! It’s a privilege and it’s a joy that’s inaccessible to those who don’t know Jesus. And each time we confess, we claim and reaffirm the truth of what our Savior did for us on the cross! 

The grace and the forgiveness that we receive makes the joy of our salvation more precious every time we receive it. “There is . . . no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 8:1). God does not condemn you, but He says: “Girl, I want to free you! I want to see that lift in your life. I want to breathe air into you. But you need to get rid of the drag of sin that is weighing you down. All you need to do is come to me.” 

If [you] confess [your] sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). 

Every time we come to the cross with our sin and lay it down, we’re reminded over and over again about the reality and the wonder of it all!

You know, when you start addressing baggage, it’s a good thing to look at it, go: “This is a pink suitcase.” Be specific about what sin is in your life, and then just say, “O God, I need You! Against You, You alone have I sinned!” 

“I’m leaving this at the foot of Your cross, and I ask You to forgive me. I am so sorry! And how I need You, God! I need You to give me a willing spirit . . . a spirit that is not rebellious against Your ways . . . a spirit whose heart just is inclined to want to do Your will.” 

This is victory. This is the power of the cross. I’ve been praying that the Holy Spirit will be in this place convicting your hearts of what He wants you to confess in this moment.

So what I want you to do is, symbolically, whenever He points out a sin (and some of us are just going to be going at it! That’s fine, that’s good) . . . Grab hold of that sin, that load that is weighing you down. Come to Jesus and say, “I am laying this down. I am unburdening, because of the power of the cross. I do not want this sin to reign over me. I do not want the drag.”

And maybe you do not feel genuine conviction. Well, then, that’s your sin that you can pray about. “God, I need to know what it is that, in my life, needs to be cleaned up.” So I’ll just get you to close your eyes and begin to do that. Grab hold of the sin. Drop it.

And we’re just going to spend a few more moments doing that. You don’t have to take a peek at what everybody else is dropping . . . all their kind of baggage. Because we’ve all got it. I have it. You have it. So let’s just take a few moments before the cross to unburden ourselves of that weight.

Nancy: And Dannah, as you know, what followed in that conference was a time of confessing and repenting of sin—just watching women get set free from that burden, that extra baggage that so many had been carrying. I know you were there and saw what was happening.

Dannah: It was truly precious. As I listened to the message today, I'm just reminded again of how powerful it is to confess sin. You know why, Nancy? Because I have just recently lived out this message. Just a few weeks ago, my life felt off. I felt burdened. I felt a weight. Things weren' right with my husband; things weren't right with my friends. Things weren't right at work.

I couldn't figure out what it was. Then a friend helped me to see this itty bitty sin in my life. No one should ever say itty bitty and sin in the same sentence. They are all the same. The ground is level at the foot of the cross. The things that are big and scary to us and horrible and hard to confess, those things separate us from God. But the little ones do too.

So I took the little sin, I confessed it to the Lord. Then I went to Bob who was the most affected by it, and I confessed to my sweet husband. It seemed like it was pretty uneventful. But Nancy, the next morning, when I woke up, my time with the Lord, it was if He had opened up the Word to me in a way it hadn't been in such a long time.

And my time with my coworkers . . . I couldn't wait to disciple some of them that I'm responsible for discipling. And Bob and me, everything is so good and sweet between us. I thought it was his fault that things weren't quite right between us, and it was mine. It was this itty bitty sin.

Friend, I just encourage you, no matter how big, how small, that analogy that Mary has just given, you are weighed down. There is baggage. There is sin in your life that doesn't belong. If you confess it—no matter how  big or small—you're going to experience a mini-revival like the one I just had.

Nancy: I love that Dannah. I love your heart and how transparent you are before the Lord—roof off—and before friends like us—walls down. I see in you the sweet fruit and freedom that that brings.

In fact, as you were talking, I was reminded how my sweet husband over the last year has had multiple scans—MRIs, CT scans. He gets in a tube and they turn on whatever they turn on and take pictures and X-rays of his body. He has told me each time when he gets in that scan he thinks about how the technology tells the technician to see what's inside of him physically.

But he's told me how he's used those times to say, "Lord, would You search my heart? Would You show me the things I don't even see that are between You and me." He came out of one of those scans and he said, "I have to tell you what the Lord showed me as I let Him search my heart in that session."

So I've seen in him too the sweet fruit of repentance—confessing sin. What a great example you have been and my husband has been to me to let the Lord show me what only He can see that needs to be confessed and repented of.

Dannah: So friend, how about you? Is there a sin you’re holding onto? Mary said genuine repentance is marked by three things:

1. Genuine conviction—understanding that your sin is wrong and it's an offense against a holy God 
2. Genuine confession—telling God you agree with Him that you’ve sinned and where appropriate, telling others you’ve sinned against them and you ask for forgiveness
3. Genuine transformation—as we apply the gospel to our lives, the Holy Spirit does change us and we look more and more like Jesus

Nancy: What a beautiful progression that is. So, what step do you need to take today? What sin do you need to confess? Would you ask Him to transform you and change you from the inside out? I hope you'll take time to just pray about it before you move on to whatever is next in your day.

We've been listening to Mary Kassian will be one of our speakers at our upcoming conference, Revive '21, Oct. 8–9. The theme of that conference is going to be Grounded: Standing Firm in a Shaking World. And oh how we need that today! 

That weekend, whether you attend in person in Indianapolis or you are part of the online experience, you’re going to hear powerful messages, and your heart will soar as we shed the baggage and worship Christ together. For more information or to register, visit ReviveOurHearts.com, or call us at 1–800–569–5959.

Dannah: Don’t forget the Spring Sale we mentioned at the beginning of today’s program. There are a lot of resources available at discounted prices. But hurry, because they’re only there while supplies last, and the sale is over Friday. Again, check it out at ReviveOurHearts.com.

Tomorrow we’re going to hear from another speaker who will be with us for Revive '21, pastor and radio host Chris Brooks. He’ll take us to First Peter and challenge us to be known for our love. Please be back tomorrow for Revive Our Hearts.

Encouraging you to run to the cross. Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth is an outreach of Life Action Ministries.

All Scripture is taken from the CSB.

*Offers available only during the broadcast of the podcast season.

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About the Speaker

Mary Kassian

Mary Kassian

Mary Kassian is an award-winning author, an internationally-renowned speaker, and a frequent guest on Revive Our Hearts. She has written more than a dozen books and Bible studies, including …

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