Develope a Palate

Develope a Palate
Daily intake of the Word nourishes the Spirit. Jeremiah's Menu is an exercise in recognizing God's Word made flesh in and around me. Eating the Word in a way that supplies the spiritual nutrients needed to grow. The Menu is offered with the hope of inspiring you to taste and see that the Lord is good. Bon Appetite!

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Quote Du Jour

Quote du Jour
Christians may differ on a variety of points, but they have all one spiritual appetite; and if we cannot all feel alike, we can all feed alike on the bread of life sent down from heaven. At the table of fellowship with Jesus we are one bread and one cup. As the loving cup goes round we pledge one another heartily therein. Get nearer to Jesus, and you will find yourself linked more and more in spirit to all who are like yourself, supported by the same heavenly manna. ---Charles Spurgeon, Morning and Evening

Sunday, August 31, 2014

morning... and... evening...

And you shall say to the people, This is the offering
made by fire which you shall offer to the Lord:
two male lambs a year old without spot or blemish,
two day by day, for continual burnt offering.
One lamb you shall offer in the morning
and the other in the evening...
Numbers 28:3-4 Amp

The Lord's direction for His people... given through Moses... 

Daily... you shall offer a sacrifice...
 morning... and... evening... 

When I came across this morning and evening sacrifice in the reading through of The Journey... I didn't think much about it until... I consulted a commentary...
Every morning and evening, a lamb had to be sacrificed. The purpose of this is most important: 'Then I will dwell among the Israelites and be their God. They will know that I am the Lord their God...' (Ex. 29:45-46).
---The New Bible Commentary 
The time of sacrifice for the Israelites played two roles...

  1. The sacrifice of blood needed to cover their sins daily... that He might continue to dwell in their presence...
  2. A reminder that He is their God... and they are dependent on Him...

Today... we Believers live by faith in the once-and-for-all sacrifice of the Lamb of God... Jesus... by Whom all sins are forgiven... and through Whom we have access to God's presence 24/7...

But the reminder... that He is God... that our days are His... and we are completely dependent on Him... may require a sacrifice in our life... a reminder of His presence... grace... mercy...

And I think about sacrifice today... and what is hardest to find... to give...?

Time...

Now my way with Him... has come to a place where every morning... I give Him time... willingly... joyfully... starting may day... in His presence...

This did not always come easily... it began with discipline... effort... but it is now carved into my day...

The evening however... is a different story... my day seems to end in a blur of tasks... fading into a time of relaxing with family... and finally an unconscious state (usually in front of the television on the sofa)...

There is no evening sacrifice to the Lord in my life...

I've felt the call recently to initiate one... but it has yet to happen...

With this Word... I feel the call even more intensely... and remember the effort made for the morning sacrifice to become deeply ingrained in my life...

So this week... I choose to begin to carve out... work for... sacrifice... some time with Him... for Him... in the evening... the twilight of my day... the day He has blessed me with... and walked with me through... faithfully and full of grace...

We'll see how it goes...

May my prayer be set before you like incense;
may the lifting up of my hands be like the evening sacrifice.
Psalm 141:2

How do you sacrifice to Him each day...?

Saturday, August 30, 2014

The Journey Readings: Week 35

Monday                Numbers 31
Tuesday                Numbers 32
Wednesday           Numbers 33:1-49
Thursday               Numbers 33:50 - 34:29
Friday                   Numbers 35-36

The Journey continues its time in the wilderness... the trek to the Promised Land through Numbers nears completion... one more week remains...

The last week's of readings led us to the border of the land promised... and one last census before entering...

But among these there was not a man of those numbered by Moses and Aaron the priest when they numbered the Israelites in the Wilderness of Sinai.
For the Lord had said of them, They shall surely die in the wilderness. There was not left a man of them except Caleb son of Jephunneh and Joshua son of Nun.
Numbers 26:64-65 Amp

The forty years of wandering... weeded out those who doubted... grumbled... and rebelled...

Friday, August 29, 2014

full of thanks...

Full of thanks... for His faithfulness... and grace...

For from his fullness we have all received,
grace upon grace.
John 1:14 ESV

Thursday, August 28, 2014

challenges of new... reveal a truth of old...

This journey into new... new job... new skills... new challenges... leads to the opportunity for lots of errors...

Errors from presumption... and assumption... each highlighted after the fact... by clear cut evidence... a solid piece of testimony... revealing the error...

Backtracking... confession... time... required to correct each...

I wake in the night... errors haunting...

Wondering how I could make such mistakes... when I know what to do... but somehow I don't do it...?

A parallel emerges... between this new endeavor... its pitfalls... and my own life... a truth of old...

Each and everyday... I make mistakes... commit sins... against Him... in the unseen realm... based on presumption... and assumption...

It's just that for the most part... these go unnoticed... no physical evidence readily available to reveal the sin...

Eventually yes... through challenging relationships... unkind attitudes... and a decreased sensitivity to error...

But in the moment... nothing seems all that detrimental...

These challenges of new... reveal a truth of old...

Who can discern his errors?
Declare me innocent from hidden faults.
Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins;
let them not have dominion over me!
Then I shall be blameless,
and innocent of great transgression.
Psalm 19:12-13 ESV

Oh... praise Him for His Son... Jesus... the One who saves...!

In Him alone... am I declared innocent from hidden faults...
and those blatantly obvious...

Yes... today... I will focus on His great grace...
and pray for some... from those I serve...
on this new business journey...


Lord... keep back Your servant... from presumptuous sin...
Only in You... may I be blameless... of great transgression...

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

a prayer... for facing the challenge of the day...

The challenge to stay grounded in grace... moves from one day... to... the... next...

A prayer... for the day... and throughout... each day... to help stay grounded...

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.
Psalm 19:14 ESV

Lord... guard my mouth... keep rash words from being spewed...

Lord... guard my heart... keep my mind... will... and emotions... in line with You and Your truth...

Lord... let me... my thoughts... words... and actions... be pleasing to You...

Lord... let my life... today... be a witness of Your grace... and evidence that You are... my Rock... my Redeemer...

Lord... let it be so... Amen...

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

a challenge... to stay grounded in grace...

Where is He...?
when things go wrong...?
when relationships are strained...?
when hearts feel hard...?

He is here...
there...
with us...
in the midst of it all...

The challenge... recognizing the truth... the reality of His presence... then... making the choice... to stay grounded in grace...

We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed;
we are perplexed, but not in despair;
Persecuted, but not forsaken; 
cast down but not destroyed;
Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus,
that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.
2 Corinthians 4:8-10 KJV

In this world we will have trouble... He said it Himself... to His disciples...

Just as He faced trouble... and walked in grace...
we too... face trouble... and must choose... to walk in grace...

For me... walking in grace... often involves busting out with the Doxology... when feeling pressed... or tried...

Praise God from whom all blessings flow...
Praise Him all creatures here below...
Praise Him above ye heavenly host...
Praise Father... Son... and Holy Ghost...
Amen...

What about you...?
What helps you stay grounded in grace...? when life presses... and challenges...?

Let us know... here at the table...
[To share with us... click the post title... scroll down till you find the box... Post A Comment... and then post...]

Here's a song that may help you stay grounded... in His grace...


Yes Lord... Yes Lord... Yes Yes Lord...

Monday, August 25, 2014

signs of hope...

Signs of hope...
a sprouting from the dark...
I saw one today...

Praying for more...

And hope does not disappoint us, because God has
poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit,
whom he has given us.
Romans 5:5

Sunday, August 24, 2014

beware settling... for where you are...

Israel settled down and remained...
Numbers 25:1 Amp

Settling down... sounds good to most of us...

We long for routine...

Knowing what's next... brings a sense of security...

Change can be exhausting...

The problem with Israel's choice to settle... was that they were on a journey... and not yet to the end...

They had not reached the Promised Land... the place where God was leading them...

This settling down happened in the fortieth year of their wanderings... so close to the end... they settled for where they were...

Israel settled down and remained in Shittim,
and the people began to play the harlot
with the daughters of Moab...
Numbers 25:1 Amp

Israel settled... and in the settling came temptation...

The same is true for us...

When we stop moving forward with God... when we settle for where we are... and fail to pursue all He has promised... we set ourselves up to be led astray...

Beware settling for where you are... in your faith... in your relationship with Him... in your life...

Settling leads to distraction... unbelief... and doubt...

He is true to His Word... continue to seek... remember you are on a journey......

Blessed are those whose strength is in you,
who have set their hearts on pilgrimage.
Psalm 84:5

Saturday, August 23, 2014

The Journey Readings: Week 34

Monday                 Numbers 26:1-27
Tuesday                 Numbers 26:28-65
Wednesday            Numbers 27-28
Thursday                Numbers 29
Friday                    Numbers 30


Friday, August 22, 2014

faith... trusting what we do not understand...

Now faith is being sure of what we hope for
and certain of what we do not see.
Hebrews 11:1

The reading through of The Journey brought me to the account of the fiery serpents sent by God as a punishment for Israel's sin...

Moses interceded... again... for this rebellious people... and the cure... a bronze snake on a pole...?!

All who looked upon the bronze snake... lived... 

The venomous snakes remained... but the Lord provided a way of healing... in response to their plea of repentance...
But why should Moses make a model of a serpent, the very creature that was causing the people to die? Because on the cross, Jesus became sin for us --- the very thing that condemns the people --- and bore in His body that which brings spiritual death (2 Cor. 5:21; Rom. 8:3; Gal. 3:13; 1 Peter 2:22-24). Moses didn't hide the bronze serpent; he lifted it up on a pole and put the pole where everybody could see it! So our Lord was crucified publicly, outside the city of Jerusalem, and those who hear the Gospel can "look to Him" and be saved. "For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved" (Rom. 10:13).
Moses didn't stick the pole inside the tabernacle or even in the tabernacle court, because nobody is saved by keeping the law. The uplifted serpent was the only cure in the camp, just as Jesus Christ is the only Savior of sinners in the world (Acts 4:12; John 14:6). Nobody could look at the bronze serpent for another person; each dying sinner had to look for himself or herself. The salvation Christ offers is personal and individual, and each of us must look to Christ by faith. No matter how hard they tried, no dying Jew could save himself or herself. The only salvation available was what God had graciously provided, and if you rejected it, you died.
Sin and death came into this world through a look (Gen. 3:6), and the only deliverance from sin and eternal death is by a look of faith: "Look to Me, and be saved, all you ends of the earth" (Isa. 45:22, NKJV). To look means to exercise faith, and the only way to be saved is by faith (Eph. 2:8-19). A dying Jew might argue, "It's a foolish remedy," but it still worked (1 Cor 1:18-25). Or the dying Israelite might say, "It's too simple," but the remedy still worked.
---Warren W. Wiersbe, Be Counted 
To look by faith... upon this snake... upon Christ... is to trust... without understanding... how... or why... it works...

When people say... I see... it denotes an Aha moment... one where understanding has dawned...

But to be certain of what we do not see... is to be certain of what we do not understand...

Jesus Himself connects Himself to this bronze snake on a pole...

"... And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness,
so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever
believes in him may have eternal life."
John 3:14 ESV

Faith... trusting without understanding... 

Where do you need to exercise some faith...? God's Word...? His promises...?

You do not need to understand it all... You just need to trust Him...

He is faithful in all He does...

God is not man, that he should lie,
or a son of man, that he should change his mind.
Has he said, and will he not do it?
Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it?
Numbers 23:19 ESV

Thursday, August 21, 2014

when facing a full day...

When facing a full day... do it with joy...

This is the day that the Lord has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118:24 ESV

Trusting His help...

My help comes from the Lord,
who made heaven and earth.
Psalm 121:2 ESV

Relying on His strength...

The Lord is my strength and my song;
he has become my salvation.
Psalm 118:14 ESV

Thank You... Lord... for this day...
Your help... Your strength...
all reasons to rejoice...!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

seeing... hope...

A daily prayer journal... instructs during the time of confession...

Ask God to reveal sins you need to turn from. 
Confess. Repent.

I asked... and was convicted by the answer...

Hopelessness...

Yes... I tend to be a pessimist... a pragmatist...

Hope-full... is a place I fall short...

After confession... I seek repentance... How do I make this u-turn...?

And I recognize... it is done... by faith...

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for,
conviction of things not seen.
Hebrews 11:1 ESV

All the things for which I hope... for me... family... friends... church... are currently unseen... hidden... by time...

The image that comes to mind... is a seed... planted... underground... unseen... in the dark...

So I look at the nothing... put my hope in Him... and thank Him for the work He is doing... in the unseen... 

Lord... I can't wait to see what You bring forth...
from this darkness...

Hope... is only hope... when it is unseen...

For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.
Romans 8:25 ESV

There's the rub... patience... 

Impatience... continues to raise its head... 
as I wait... 
           and wait... 
                     and wait...

The picture of God at work in the unseen... underneath the surface... bringing life... and growth... as only He can... fuels... my... hope...

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.
Romans 15:13 ESV

Amen...!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

be prepared... to stop...

The call to stop... and pray... intercede on behalf of others... has me thinking...

His Word... it says...

...be prepared in season and out of season...
2Timothy 4:2

...in season... when conditions are favorable...
... out of season... when conditions are unfavorable...

Be prepared... to... stop...
when it's convenient...
when it's not convenient...
when it fits easily into your plan...
when it seems completely unreasonable...

Be prepared... to stop... when He calls...

You don't know what the eternal impact might be...

I just heard of a man I know who died...
a possible suicide...

And I wonder... Did He call someone... to stop...? to intercede...? but the conditions weren't favorable...?

I don't know...

But I do know... it was not convenient for me to stop... to walk through a garden... and pray...

I know... I could have made excuses... justified not stopping... hardened my heart... and moved on... I actually tried to...

I'm glad He continued to press...
hold me to my desire... for my days to be His...
both in season...
and out of season...

You just don't know... what difference it may make...

So... give Him your days...

Be prepared... mentally... emotionally... spiritually... to stop...
in season... and out of season...

Father God... I give You this day...
let it be... Your day... Your way...
Hold me to my desire... to be prepared...
to stop... at Your call...

What steps... do you need to take... to be prepared... to stop...?

Monday, August 18, 2014

a call to stop...

Returning home on Saturday evening... I saw it... a sign...

Prayer Garden
Public Welcome

Passing this sign at 65 mph... that still small voice said... Stop...

So I slowed... significantly... where the arrow pointed... and all I saw was an RV park...

Thinking... Well... I missed it... I zoomed on... but not for long...

That voice... His Spirit... it pressed... 

Passing each spot to U-turn... the angst... increased...

Asking forgiveness for missing the opportunity... did not bring peace...

At the next left turn lane on the highway... I turned...

Backtracking several miles... I came again to the sign... a sign to pray...

Making my way to the garden... car parked... Bible in one hand... iPad in the other... I found myself standing at the entry to the prayer garden and prayed... OK... I'm here... 


With ears open... I began to walk...

My expectation... He had something for me... something to tell me... adding to all I heard over the last two days at the leadership conference...

But continuing down the path... it was hard to hear...

Next door... country and western tunes blared... as the neighbor worked on his house...

The garden was full of concrete animals... and men's words... 

All a bit distracting...

Making my way to the gazebo... I sat... telling Him... I'm trying to hear... but there is a lot of noise from the world here... 

I listened more... What do you have for me...?

Nothing...

Then... Why am I here...?

To pray for this church...

Ahhh.... there's the unexpected answer... 
I was not called to this garden to receive...
but to give...

What shall I pray...?


(His standard answer for everything of late...)

And so I prayed... through the psalm... for the church He led me to...

When I was done... I went back to the car... headed again... for home...

No more angst... at each turn around...

Just peace...  

And wonder... at a call... to stop... and intercede... for a church... I know nothing about...

Privileged for the opportunity... grateful for the turnaround... and the blessing of serving Him... wherever He leads...

Is He calling you to stop...? not for yourself... but for another...?

Be willing to listen... stop... and intercede... when He calls... even if you don't know exactly who it is you are praying for...

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions
with all kinds of prayers and requests.
With this in mind, be alert and 
always keep on praying for all the saints.
Ephesians 6:18

Sunday, August 17, 2014

good-bye world... good-bye

The men's quartet sang it in worship this morning...

Heaven is near and I can't stay here,
Good-bye world... Good-bye...

And I think... heaven is near... for those in Christ...

...Jesus began to preach,
"Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near."
Matthew 4:17

We do not have to die... to begin telling the world... and its ways... good-bye...

We need only repent... turn from the world's ways... and follow Him...

Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.
Colossians 3:2

Begin telling the world... good-bye... today... for His kingdom is near... in Him... and we shouldn't want to stay where we are... we should long to draw closer to Him... living in His kingdom... now...

What in the world... do you need to tell Good-bye...? starting today...?

Saturday, August 16, 2014

The Journey Readings: Week 33

Monday              Numbers 18-19
Tuesday              Numbers 20:1 - 21:9
Wednesday         Numbers 21:10 - 22:21
Thursday             Numbers 22:22 - 23:30
Friday                 Numbers 24-25

In last week's readings... God revealed His heart to protect His people from sinning...

Speak to the Israelites and bid them make fringes or tassels
on the corners in the borders of their garments...
And it shall be to you a fringe or tassel that you may
look upon and remember all the commandments
of the Lord... That you may remember and do
all My commandments and be holy to your God.
Numbers 15:38-40 Amp

In addition... Aaron's staff budded... to remind the Israelites whom God had appointed... in order to stay any further rebellion...

God does not want to afflict His children with pain... He longs to pour out mercy... grace... 

But sometimes... affliction... is... grace...

For the Lord will not cast off forever,
but, though he cause grief, he will have compassion
according to the abundance of his steadfast love;
for he does not willingly afflict
or grieve the children of men.
Lamentations 3:31-33 ESV

I wonder what He might reveal to you...?

Friday, August 15, 2014

knowing where to stand...

As processing continues... I know where I need to stand... to listen... and wait...

On The Cornerstone...

So then you are no longer strangers and aliens,
but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members
of the household of God, built on the foundation
of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus being the cornerstone...
Ephesians 2:19-20 ESV

Reminded... I do not want to step off the Cornerstone...
Reminded... I belong to Him...
Reminded... of His love... grace... goodness...
Reminded... He is at work... even when it doesn't look like it...

Encouraged... to stand firm... on The Cornerstone...


Lord... I do not want to move off The Cornerstone...
keep me firmly planted... rooted in You... and Your Word...
Amen...

Thursday, August 14, 2014

processing...

Preparing... leads to processing...

The first of two days of...
high level...
highly condensed...
leadership training...

Processing leads to questions...
What...?
How...?
When...?

Questions lead to listening... waiting... for Him to reveal... answers... direction... guidance...

But for you, O Lord, do I wait;
it is you, O Lord my God, who will answer.
Psalm 38:15 ESV

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

preparing...

Preparing... whether it is the process of prudently preparing for bad news... or for a couple of days away... takes time... and intention...

Preparing... is the way we are to approach each day with Him...

He has prepared a way for us... into His presence...

...we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place
by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us
through the curtain, that is, his body...
Hebrews 10:19-20

He prepares a table for us... in the presence of the enemy...

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.
Psalm 23:5

Our appropriate response... prepare for the day... the journey... whatever may lie ahead...  with a sacrifice of thanks...

He who sacrifices thank offerings honors me,
and he prepares the way so that I may show him
the salvation of God...
Psalm 50:23

Through a preparation of thanksgiving... we prepare the way... so we may see the salvation of God... today...

How will you offer a sacrifice of thanks today...? how will I...?

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

trusting the Lord... prudently...

Trusting the Lord... does not mean we ignore the alarms He provides...

The prudent sees danger and hides himself,
but the simple go on and suffer for it.
Proverbs 22:3 and 27:12 ESV

The lesson of the alarms... the alert of the tempest... the battle cry... call for preparation...

Just as Joseph instructed Pharaoh... the dreams an alarm... seven years of plenty... to prepare for seven years of famine...

Here we find ourselves in the end times... the time when wars... rumors of wars... famines... earthquakes... will increase... the labor pains come with greater frequency and intensity... as the time for Him to return draws near...

"... And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are but the beginning of the birth pains. ..." 
---Jesus
Matthew 24:6-8 ESV

We... in Christ... are to expect... and read the signs... and listen for His alarm... yet not be alarmed...

The Greek translated alarmed in this passage means... to be in a state of fear associated with surprise... (Louw-Nida)

We... in Christ... are to be readied... prepared... listening for His guidance... direction... preparing... without fear...

But also with a heart of compassion for others... being prepared... that we might be in a place to help others... should need arise...

Fear should not be our driving force... when bad news... and rumors of wars... come into our lives...

Trusting the Lord... listening to His guidance and direction... is our response...

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you with my eye upon you.
Psalm 32:8 ESV

Monday, August 11, 2014

bad news...?

Bad news... rumor of impending doom...

What is the proper response... when it comes...?

Praise the Lord!
Blessed is the man who fears the Lord,
who greatly delights in his commandments!
...
He is not afraid of bad news;
his heart is firm, trusting in the Lord.
Psalm 112:1, 7 ESV

The Lord... He's greater than any evil in the world... and the one who trusts Him... praises Him... delights in His commandments... has no thing to fear...

What then shall we say to these things?
If God is for us, who can be against us?
Romans 8:31 ESV

Sunday, August 10, 2014

more on complaining...

Last week's lesson from The Journey... recognizing complaining as a sin... on further examination... I see that it is when we complain to each other... or to our leaders... that God becomes angry...

There is One to whom we can legitimately take our complaint... when we have built a relationship with Him... and that is the Lord Himself...

When we turn out complaint into prayer... He receives it... hears it... convicts... and changes our perspective...

This is what Moses exemplified so well...

Moses heard the people weeping throughout their clans, everyone at the door of his tent. And the anger of the Lord blazed hotly, and Moses was displeased. Moses said to the Lord, "Why have you dealt ill with your servant? And why have I not found favor in your sight, that you lay the burden of all this people on me? Did I conceive all this people? Did I give them birth, that you should say to me, 'Carry them in your bosom, as a nurse carries a nursing child,' to the land that you swore to give their fathers?..."
Numbers 11:10-12 ESV

When you read on... you find God's anger did not burn against Moses... He had compassion on Him... He empowered additional leaders to help Moses carry the burden of the people...

Complaining is sin... when we carry it to one another... but when we take it to God... it is prayer...

Rick Warren calls this "venting vertically"...

We too... need to take our grumblings... complaints... to the only One who can do something about it... not to our friends... or family...

Cry out to Him... follow the example of Moses... and the psalmists... turn your complaint... into prayer...

I cry aloud to the Lord;
I lift up my voice to the Lord for mercy.
I pour out my complaint before him;
before him I tell my trouble.
Psalm 142:1-2 

Saturday, August 9, 2014

The Journey Readings: Week 32

Monday                  Numbers 12-13
Tuesday                  Numbers 14:1-38
Wednesday             Numbers 14:39 - 15:31
Thursday                 Numbers 15:32 - 16:50
Friday                     Numbers 17

This past week's readings... the grumblings began anew among God's people... on their journey to the Promised Land...

The greatest lesson received...


Complaining... grumbling... and ingratitude...
is evil in the sight of the Lord...

God's people are to be marked by gratitude... thanks giving... in all circumstances...

Do all things without grumbling or disputing,
that you may be blameless and innocent,
children of God without blemish
in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation,
among whom you shine as lights in the world...
Philippians 2:14-15

Friday, August 8, 2014

an alarm to journey...

An alarm shall be blown 
whenever they are to set out on their journey.
Numbers 10:6 Amp

I read it in my reading through... this week in The Journey...

And I wonder... Is there always an alarm... to signal the beginning of a journey...?

Delving into the original language... I find the Hebrew means... 
teruwah... 1. alarm, signal, sound of a tempest, shout, shout or blast of war or alarm or joy. 1.a. alarm of war, war-cry, battle-cry 1b. blast (for march). 1c. shout of joy (with religious impulse). 1d. shout of joy (in general)
--- Enhanced Strong's Lexicon
And I think about my own journey... the alarm setting me on this journey seeking Him...

Mine was the sound of a tempest... a violent storm... tumult... uproar... 

The illness and death of my mom... this was my alarm... waking me to the need to journey... set out to a new place... and a new way...

And my latest journey... into the new shop...

That alarm... began quietly... but erupted with a shout of joy... taking the official steps... setting out with commitment...

But... are there alarms in the past...? ones I've missed...? alarms I ignored... neglected...?

Yes... I can think of a few...

Memories of alarms... still echo... bringing a mix of regret... and thanks...

Regret for journeys missed...

Thanks for His grace... His continued persistence... to pursue... and prod... this stiff-necked beast...

Alarms... joyful... tempestuous... or calls to battle... they are all signals to begin journeying...

Can you identify the alarms that set you off on your journey with Him...?
What about alarms you closed your ears to...? or let fear paralyze you from setting out...?

The Israelites had the priests... blowing out alarms on silver trumpets... to signal the time for a new journey...

In Christ... we have a great High Priest... who still graces us with alarms... signaling the time to move... journey... to a new place... with Him... and others...

Father God... make me attentive to the various alarms You set off in my life... I don't want to miss any part of the journey You have laid out for me...

Thursday, August 7, 2014

opinion... vs... Truth...

Against you, you only, have I sinned
and done what is evil in your sight,
so that you may be justified in your words
and blameless in your judgment.
Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity,
and in sin did my mother conceive me.
Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being
and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart.
Psalm 51:4-6 ESV

I've heard too much about opinions lately... when the topics discussed... should be centered on seeking Truth...
opinion... noun... 1 a: a view, judgment, or appraisal formed in the mind about a particular matter b: approval, esteem 2 a: belief stronger than impression and less strong than positive knowledge b: a generally held view...
 ---Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary (11th Ed.)
Why can't people just keep their opinions to themselves...
Can't we agree to disagree...? understand we all see things differently...?

When it comes to the subject of sin... it's not about opinion... we do not get to make those judgments... no matter how we view... appraise... or feel about... issues regarding sin...

God alone... judges rightly... 
He alone... defines sin...
He alone... is Truth...

Jesus answered, "I am the way,
and the truth, and the life... "
John 14:6

Behold... I was brought forth in iniquity... what possible judgment could I make... could you make... about sin that would be right...?

Opinions come from strong beliefs... impressions... judgments... formed in the mind... and often times based on deceptions... the emotional deceit of the heart... it wants what it wants... 

The heart is deceitful above all things,
and desperately sick; who can understand it?
Jeremiah 17:9 ESV

Only when we are ready to put aside emotions... and seek His wisdom... His way... despite how we feel about it... will we come to Truth...
truth... noun... 1 a archaic: fidelity, constancy b: sincerity in action, character, and utterance 2 a (1): the state of being the case: fact (2): the body of real things, events, and facts: actuality (3) often capitalized: a transcendent fundamental or spiritual reality b: a judgment, proposition, or idea that is true or accepted as true... c: the body of true statements and propositions 3 a: the property (as of a statement) of being in accord with fact or reality...
 ---Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary (11th Ed.) 
Every Believer possesses access to Truth through the Holy Spirit...

"... When the Spirit of truth comes, 
he will guide you into all the truth..."
John 16:13

Understanding our capacity to be deceived by self... and others... is the first step in moving toward Truth...

Understanding our broken nature... the first step toward revelation...

Behold... Lord... You delight in truth in the inward being... 
...teach me wisdom... in the secret heart...
...reveal where I have replaced Truth... with mere opinion...

Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me.
Psalm 51:10 ESV

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

a word for the weary...

Walking through new... continues... 
building confidence... 
exercising humility...

A busy season... weighs even in my sleep...

Early morning waking thoughts... focused on...
work to do...
mistakes to correct...
firsts still to be done...

By the time the hour of work came around... I was already weary...

Trusting His strength... with my weakness... the day progressed... and so did the work...

At the end of the day... coming home with a tired headache... the joy... it still fills...

His faithfulness to strengthen... in your weakness... never fails...

My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart
and my portion forever.
Psalm 73:26

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

because He made it...

Today... a day to rejoice...
because...
He made it...

No matter what happened today...
don't let it rule your mood...
this is a day... He made...

Whether the day be good or bad...
rejoice...
because... He... made... it...

This is the day that the Lord has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118:24 ESV

Monday, August 4, 2014

love is patient...

Reminded of a much needed lesson...

Love is patient...
1Corinthians 13:4

Tempted by impatience... I remember His patience...

His long-suffering grace... bearing the agony... retaining the affection...

...God demonstrates his own love for us in this:
While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 4:8

Choosing... to love like Him... patiently...

...our Lord's patience means salvation...
2Peter 3:7

Sunday, August 3, 2014

eyes open to broken...

Worshiped today... with eyes open to broken...

A Communion Sunday... every member in turn... taking their place at the altar rail... receiving Him...

Sitting toward the back I watch... seeing broken lives... a broken Body...

Recognizing broken... and remembering the lesson learned... prayers for healing flowed... waiting my turn to go forward...

At the rail... kneeling... head bowed... I hear the one serving the one on my right...

The broken body of Christ given for you...

And then to me...

The gift of God given to you...

Then to the one on my left...

The broken body of Christ given for you...

He was broken... as a gift for us... that we might be healed...

Our broken... perhaps a grace... a gift... that we might know... our need for healing... know our need for Him...?

And then we sing... a hymn... whose verse affirms this thought...

I, the Lord of snow and rain,
I have born my people's pain.
I have wept for love of them, 
They turn away.
I will break their hearts of stone,
Give them hearts for love alone.
I will speak My word to them,
Whom shall I send?

Him broken... so we might be healed...
He breaks... so we might receive...
Grace...

For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness,"
made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light
of the knowledge of the glory of God
in the face of Christ.
But we have this treasure in jars of clay
to show that this all-surpassing power is from God
and not from us.
2Corinthians 4:6-7

Saturday, August 2, 2014

The Journey Readings: Week 31

Monday                 Numbers 7:1-37
Tuesday                 Numbers 7:38-89
Wednesday            Numbers 8-9
Thursday                Numbers 10
Friday                    Numbers 11

Yes... The Journey is currently traveling through the book of Numbers... but don't let this stop you from joining the trek...

The Hebrew title for this Old Testament book is... In the Wilderness... a more accurate title...

Numbers does contain a few numbers... but it also covers 38 years of the Israelites' wanderings to the Promised Land... it is more than just numbers...

It is filled with blessings... and lessons... found only in the wilderness...

The Lord bless you and keep you;
the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you;
the Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:24-26 ESV

Friday, August 1, 2014

broken... a battle lesson...

I saw it... something broken...
something within my power to fix... right then...
but didn't...

I suppose I thought it would be someone else's problem...
or maybe... someone else would take care of that...
or I'd fix it later... when I actually needed to use it...
after all... I didn't break it...

Honestly... I don't know why I didn't fix it... right then...
in that moment... when I saw it broken...
before it could do any damage...

I really didn't think about the damage it might cause...

But... the broken I recognized... and passed over... did destroy...
at my hand... with my negligence...
at cost... to the new business...

In this week of battling... I receive a battle lesson...

Never ignore... pass over... look away from... anything broken... 
when it's in your power to fix... repair... or remove...

This doesn't just apply to the physical...
it goes for the spiritual... emotional... relational...

When you come across broken... and see it... recognize its potential to destroy...

When it falls within your realm of influence... or authority... take time... fix it... or at least try...

With hearts... souls... relationships... maybe it's a truth spoken in love... an encouragement... a word of wisdom shared... a prayer offered... a hug given...

I don't know exactly what this lesson looks like... when lived out... but I do know there's a lesson to be learned... one bigger than broken needles on embroidery machines... and irreparable holes in shirt cuffs...

My act of ignoring broken... cost more than just me...

And that's true of everything broken... and it's potential to destroy... whether you broke it or not...

So... don't be like me... when you recognize broken... (and there is plenty of broken in this world...) seek Him... His guidance... His direction... and take time... right then... to fix it... or bring it to the One who can...

That's what He came to do... fix... repair... redeem... and He never broke anything...

The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
because the Lord has anointed me 
to bring good news to the poor;
he has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;
to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor,
and the day of vengeance of our God;
to comfort all who mourn in Zion ---
to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit;
that they may be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.
Isaiah 61:1-3 ESV

And as His followers... that's what we're called to do too... 

In Jesus's name...