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

Friday, October 31, 2014

surrender...

Surrender... the word echoes... driving home... at the end of a battle-filled week...

Not just my battles... but those of others too...
surrender... 1 a: to yield to the power, control, or possession of another upon compulsion or demand... b: to give up completely or agree to forgo especially in favor of another 2 a: to give (oneself) up into the power of another especially as a prisoner b: to give (oneself) over to something (as an influence)
---Merrian-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary (11th Ed.)
Surrender... yield control... give up...

So many needs... so many prayers... I don't even know how to pray... only desiring His will... surrendering my needs... and others'... to Him...

It's all His anyway... in His sovereignty...

"See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god besides me;
I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal;
and there is none that can deliver out of my hand. ..."
Deuteronomy 32:39 ESV

Surrender...
anxiety...
fear...
desire...
the unknown...
the future...
the past...

Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything.
Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.
Philippians 4:6 NLT

Surrender it all to Him... in prayer...
I learned that faith isn't tested by how often God answers my prayers with a yes, but by my willingness to continue serving Him and thanking Him, even when I don't have a clue as to what He's doing.
---Gary L. Thomas, Seeking the Face of God
Surrender... learning to trust... His answer... whether it's... Yes... or... No...

Trusting that He is good... in all He allows...

The Lord is good to all,
and his mercy is over all that he has made.
Psalm 145:9 ESV

Giving it up... to Him...


Related fare...

Thursday, October 30, 2014

remembering... His awesome deeds...

Sitting on the porch... in the warmth of the setting sun... preparing for the coming morning's Bible study...
Tell about a time God showed up and did something surprising and unexpected in a seemingly hopeless situation...
--- The Story Participant's Guide
And I did... through my pen... in my journal... recorded an awesome deed... a miracle that overwhelms... fills my heart with awe struck faith... more now than at the time...

At the time... too stunned to fully appreciate... feeling more like those disciples on the mountain... just before the Ascension... the ones who doubted...

But now... at a distance... it astonishes... encourages... reignites a war-weary faith...

By awesome deeds you answer us with righteousness,
O God of our salvation,
the hope of all the ends of the earth
and of the farthest seas...
Psalm 65:5 ESV

What about you...? Do you need to remember... His awesome deeds in your life...?

Ask Him to remind you... where He has worked wonders for you...

We often forget... way too fast... in the heat of the most current battle...

Allow Him... to remind... encourage... refresh...

He is awesome indeed...!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

it's a battle out there...!

It's a battle out there...!
And today... I felt its weight...

Lost screws...
rowdy sixth graders...
a prayer campaign... to uproot the enemy...
leaves me a weary warrior...

Asking Him this morning... regarding a dis-ease... How long will this last...?

His answer... It will get worse... before it gets better...

And it echos now... the battle of the day... It will get worse... before it gets better...

"...All these are but the beginning of the birth pains. ..." ---Jesus
Matthew 24:8 ESV

On the way home... in the dark... a song reminds... that in it all... through it all... His grace... finds me...


Breathing in Your grace... Breathing out Your praise...

You are my Strong Tower...!
You are my Strength and my Shield...!
Amen...

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

be still... and know...

The need to know His holiness... and who we are before Him... reminds me...

He calls us... into His presence... to be still and know... His holiness...

"Be still and know that I am God.
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted on earth!"
Psalm 46:10 ESV

I challenge you today... myself too...

Be still...

This morning... as I asked for a Word today... He directed me to Psalm 65...

Grab your Bible...
perhaps your journal... a pen...
and find a quiet place... to sit...

Ask for your own Word...
or open to Psalm 65...

Sit... read... meditate...
in His presence...
for thirty minutes...

Be still... and know...


Note... 
If you feel led... let us know here... at this table... what you came to know of Him... and His holiness...
Leave a comment... in the comment box...
The comment box can be found by clicking the post title... in the email... or on the blog site... and then scroll to the bottom...

Monday, October 27, 2014

the holiness of Him...

A large book on prayer... I've been reading bites slowly... as the book draws my attention...

This morning was one of those mornings... and it brought me to... the holiness of Him...
I have said that the meaning of the words, the holiness of God, is not easily expressed. But we may begin by saying that they imply the unspeakable aversion and hatred with which God regards sin. And if you wish to understand what that means, remember that He preferred His Son die, rather than that sin should reign. Think of the Son of God, who gave up His life rather than act in the least matter against the will of the Father. Still further, He had such a hatred of sin that He preferred to die rather than that men should be held in sin's power. That is something of the holiness of God, which is a pledge that He will do everything for us --- for you and me --- to deliver us from sin. Holiness is the fire of God that will consume sin in us and make us holy sacrifices, pure and acceptable before Him (Rom. 12:1). It was for this reason that the Spirit came down as fire. He is the Spirit of God's holiness, the Spirit of sanctification in us.
---Andrew Murray, Andrew Murray on Prayer
His holiness... the unspeakable aversion and hatred with... regards to sin...

Murray goes on to say... No one can expect to understand and receive the holiness of God who is not often and long alone with God.

The practice of prayer... sitting in His presence... reveals His holiness... and our great need for forgiveness...

Do you have an unspeakable aversion to... hatred toward... sin...?
Are some sins more tolerable than others...? perhaps yours...?

And I wonder... do I hate sin as I should...? as He... in His holiness... calls me to...?

Hmmm... perhaps it's time to steep in His presence...
Allow His Light... to shine deep... into the dark recesses of me...
Making my heart tender... toward His soft voice of conviction...
And the call... to repent...

For thus says the Lord, the Holy One of Israel,
"In returning and rest you shall be saved;
in quietness and in trust shall be your strength."
But you were unwilling...
Isaiah 30:15 ESV

Be willing... 

Take time... sit in His presence... before the holiness of Him...

Sunday, October 26, 2014

The Journey Readings: Week 43... and settling...

This last week... on The Journey... we saw the settling of the Promised Land... 

Joshua... leading the Israelites in battle... for a long time...

Yet... somehow... in the settling... God's people... settled for less...

Yet the Israelites did not drive out the Geshurites or the Maachithites,
but Geshur and Maacath dwell among [them] still.
Joshua 13:13 Amp

But the Jebusites, the inhabitants of Jerusalem,
the people of Judah could not drive out;
so the Jebusites dwell with the people at Jerusalem to this day.
Joshua 15:63 Amp

But they did not drive out the Canaanites who dwelt in Gezer;
but the Canaanites dwell among the Ephraimites to this day...
Joshua 17:12 Amp

And I wonder... Why...? Why didn't they drive out all the enemy...? Why did they think they couldn't....?

None of the tribes... followed God's command wholeheartedly... 
They all let a remnant of the enemy remain in their midst....
They didn't inhabit the full extent of the promise...

Why...?

Were they not wholehearted for Him...?
Was it unbelief...?
Complacency...?
Compromise...?

What about us...? His people today...?
What keeps us from pursuing ALL that He promises...?

We allow the enemy a foothold in our lives... because of the very same heart issues... unbelief... doubt... fear... complacency... compromise...

God's promises to us... are fulfilled... when we are fully faithful...

Stop settling... for less...

This week's readings for... The Journey...
Monday                 Joshua 18:1 - 19:9
Tuesday                 Joshua 19:10-51
Wednesday           Joshua 20-21
Thursday               Joshua 22
Friday                   Joshua 23-24

Friday, October 24, 2014

wondering... at the end of a week...

Wondering... at the end of a week...
another week... full to the brim...

How did He do it all...?

For it certainly wasn't me...

Wondering... at His faithfulness...
Wondering... at my faithlessness...

Wondering... at the way He made...
despite... my waywardness...

Wondering... at the end of a week...

Why is He so faithful... to me...?

I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples;
I will sing praises to you among the nations.
For your steadfast love is great to the heavens,
your faithfulness to the clouds.
Psalm 57:9-10 ESV

Thursday, October 23, 2014

morning... speaking glory... and joy...

The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
Psalm 19:1 ESV

The skies... they started out very vociferous... this morning...





A day dawning... declaring His glory... and shouting forth joy...

This is the Lord's doing;
it is marvelous in our eyes.
This is the day that the Lord has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118:23-24 ESV

Amen...

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

He makes it known...

That path... dropping fatness... 
the one filled with ruts...
His bountiful path...
His way of blessing...
He makes it known...

You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Psalm 16:11 ESV

He wants you to find it... to walk in it...
He wants you in His presence... full of joy...
He wants you... at His right hand... experiencing pleasures... forevermore...

The question might be... What do you want...?

Don't we all want joy... pleasure...?

Do you believe you'll only find it in Him...?

His path... the path of life... overflows... with blessing...
Seek... and you will find...
He makes it known...

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

note to self: behold...

"...And behold, I am with you always,
to the end of the age." --- Jesus
Matthew 28:20 ESV
behold... verb... 1: to perceive through sight or apprehension: see 2: to gaze upon: observe
---Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary (11th Ed.)
Jesus's final words to the disciples...


Behold... I am with you always...!

A truth I need to remind myself of...

He is with me... always... look for Him...

He is currently standing at the right hand of God the Father... in the heavenlies... where we currently can't see...

But He says... Behold...! Look...! I am with you...

How often I forget to look for Him in my day... make no effort to perceive His presence... and consequently miss out on comfort... encouragement... guidance... I might have otherwise received...

Just knowing... He is with me... always... brings solace... if I would just remember... to remember...

So today... I'm making a note to self... Behold...!

What about you...? Do you need to make a note also...?

Monday, October 20, 2014

Thy paths drop fatness...

...thy paths drop fatness.
Psalm 65:11 KJV

An interesting verse I came across in a Charles Spurgeon devotional... 

Thy paths... drop... fatness...

These words sent me to seek out other translations... 

...your carts overflow with abundance.
NIV84

...even the hard pathways overflow with abundance.
NLT

...your wagon tracks overflow with abundance.
ESV

...Your paths drip fatness.
NASB95

...your wagon tracks overflow with richness.
NRSV

...Your ways overflow with plenty.
HCSB

Finding such variations... I went to the Hebrew lexicons...

The words translated... paths... carts... hard pathways... wagon tracks... ways... come from the Hebrew word... ma'gal...
ma'gal... entrenchment, track...
 --- Enhanced Strong's Lexicon
...direction in life, teaching, formally, rutted path, i.e., verbal teaching as a figurative extension of a well-worn path... life, course of life, formally, path, i.e., the way one conducts oneself in life as a figurative extension of a well-worn path... path ruts, wheel tracks, i.e., grooves in a dirt path as a condition of being often used by carts... note: the picture is one of so much being on a cart it spills off onto the ground into the wheel tracks
---Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains 
Stick with me here...

The word translated... drop... overflow... drip... comes from the Hebrew... ra'aph...
...to trickle, drip...
---Enhanced Strong's Lexicon
...drop, fall, drip, i.e., the movement of liquid from the sky as a gentle, healthy, non-destructive rain... cause to rain... overflow, i.e., be in a state of great plenty...
--- Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains 
And the final word... with translations... fatness... abundance... richness... plenty...
deshen... fat ashes, fatness... of fertility... of blessing...
---Enhanced Strong's Lexicon
...choice produce, i.e., what is produced and choice for consumption... fatty ashes, i.e., the burned wood of the altar fire soaked or mixed with fat of the animal sacrifice...
 --- Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains
Thy paths... drip... fatness...

His Way... overflows... with blessing... fruitfulness...
His Way... makes tracks... ruts... it can be followed...
His Way... is unchanging...

And I think about His Way... overflowing with abundance... even filling the tracks of the path... wondering... at its fruitfulness...

Then the Word it comes... as to the reason... for the abundance... of His Way...

For as the rain and snow come down from heaven
and do not return there but water the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout, 
giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and shall succeed in the the thing for which I sent it.
Isaiah 55:10-11 ESV

His Word... never returns empty...
His Way... always fruitful...
His purpose... always accomplished...

Thy paths... drip... fatness...

Lord... keep me in Your path...
it is a rut... in which I long to be stuck...

Sunday, October 19, 2014

The Journey Readings: Week 42... and memorials...

This last week... in the reading through of The Journey... the Israelites crossed the Jordan River... into the Promised Land...

The river... flood stage... the priests bearing the ark of the covenant... obediently stepped in... by faith...

Then the waters which came down from above stood and rose up 
in a heap far off... And the people passed over opposite Jericho. 
... And while all Israel passed over on dry ground, 
the priests who bore the ark of the covenant of the Lord
stood firm on dry ground in the midst of the Jordan...
Joshua 3:16-17 Amp

Another miraculous crossing of water... the first to escape the enemy... the second to confront the enemy...

Then the Lord instructed Joshua... choose a man from each tribe... to take a stone from the midst of the Jordan... where the priests's feet stood firm... So these stones shall be to the Israelites a memorial forever...

And those twelve stones which they took out of the Jordan Joshua set up in Gilgal. And he said to the Israelites, When your children ask their fathers in time to come, What do these stones mean? You shall let your children know, Israel came over this Jordan on dry ground. For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you passed over, as the Lord your God did to the Red Sea, which He dried up for us until we passed over, That all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty and that you may reverence and fear the Lord your God forever.
Joshua 4:20-24 Amp

God reveals Himself... as One who wants His people to remember... the mighty ways He works in our lives... 

A God who calls His people to set up memorials... so our children will ask... so all people may know... the Lord our God... is God... forever...

And I'm challenged... to remember the wonders He's done in my life... and consider... if I have memorials... ones that cause others to question... and offer opportunities for me to witness... to His work in my life...

There are a few... but perhaps... I need to be more intentional... in remembering... memorializing... marking... the wonders... of His way... with me...

What work of His in your life... do you need to memorialize...? Or have you already established reminders... that cause people to question... and offer opportunities for you to witness...?

Continuing The Journey... and being mindful... of reminders...

This week's readings...
Monday              Joshua 10:29 - 11:23
Tuesday              Joshua 12:1 - 13:7
Wednesday         Joshua 13:8 - 14:15  
Thursday             Joshua 15
Friday                 Joshua 16-17

Friday, October 17, 2014

grateful... for the fullness of His grace...

At the end of a long day...
filled with blessings...
challenges...
errors...
arrogance...
love...
and encouragement...
I find myself... grateful... for the fullness... of... His... grace...

For from his fullness we have all received,
grace upon grace.
John 1:16 ESV

Thursday, October 16, 2014

thank-full... there's no need to figure it out...

The world says... Figure it out...

All the pressure on us... to make things happen... and find our way...

But God... His way... is not our way...

He says....

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding...
Proverbs 3:5 ESV

He says...

"Ask, and it will be given to you;
seek, and you will find;
knock, and it will be opened to you. ..."
Matthew 7:7 ESV

He reveals... His way... to His people...

Never... (I'm pretty sure... let me know if I'm wrong...) does He say... Figure it out...

He says... Trust Me...


And faith is... being sure of what we hope for... and certain of what we do not see...

We don't need to see... until... He reveals...

"The secret things belong to the Lord our God,
but the things that are revealed belong to us..."
Deuteronomy 29:29 ESV

He says... 

"Come and see..."
John 1:39 NLT

Thank-full... in Him... there's no need to figure it out...

Because He will reveal... at the proper time...

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!
In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope
through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade---
kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded 
by God's power until the coming of the salvation
that is ready to be revealed in the last time.
1Peter 1:3-5

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Your way... is not my way...

For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
Isaiah 55:8-9 ESV

Lord... let me never forget... my ways... are not... Your ways...

Keep me open to Your way... in thought... word... and deed...

Don't allow me to be so set in my own expectations... and understandings... that I miss Your way altogether...

Above all else... I desire... Your... Way... not... mine...

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

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

a new journey...

Waking before the alarm...
the anticipation of a new journey...

Not one of distance...
but one of the heart and soul...

A discipleship journey...
someone new joining me on the path...

While they were talking and discussing together,
Jesus himself drew near and went with them.
Matthew 24:15 ESV

Looking forward to the weeks ahead...
with anticipation... and joy...!

Monday, October 13, 2014

to Him... darkness is not dark...

A dramatic reading of a psalm in worship... reminds... to Him... darkness is not dark...

...even the darkness is not dark to you;
the night is bright as the day,
for darkness is as light with you.
Psalm 139:12 ESV

...darkness is not dark to You...

When darkness closes in on our lives... we feel alone... oppressed... overwhelmed...

Yet... the darkness is not dark to Him... He sees through it... and in His Sovereignty... turns it to light...

...darkness is as light with You...

With You... Lord... darkness is as light...

You were with Joseph... and at the end of his ordeal... he said to his brothers... who threw him into darkness...

"... As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good,
to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, 
as they are today. ..."
Genesis 50:20 ESV

You only allow what You intend... for good... and the saving of many lives...

Help me to remain with You... whenever darkness presses in... no matter what form it takes...

Remind me... darkness... is... as... light... with... You...

And we know that for those who love God
all things work together for good,
for those who are called according to his purpose.
Romans 8:28 ESV

Sunday, October 12, 2014

The Journey Readings: Week 41... and life...

Finishing up Deuteronomy... Moses's final words to the Israelites... before he dies... and they cross the Jordan...

He said to them, Set your [minds and] hearts on all the words which I command you this day, that you may command them to your children, that they may be watchful to do all the words of this law.
For it is not an empty and worthless trifle for you; it is your very life.
Deuteronomy 32:46-47 Amp

God's Word... it is not a trifle... it is your very life...

A reminder all His people need...

"It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone,
but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'"
---Jesus
Matthew 4:4 ESV

Find life... join The Journey...

This week's readings...
Monday                   Joshua 3-4
Tuesday                   Joshua 5-6
Wednesday             Joshua 7
Thursday                 Joshua 8
Friday                     Joshua 9:1 - 10:28

Friday, October 10, 2014

learning... His promises...

I see it this morning... crystal clear in my mind...

"...Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me,
for I am gentle and lowly in heart,
and you will find rest for your souls. ..."
Matthew 11:29 ESV

His invitation to learn... His promise to teach... happens under His yoke...

A yoke meant for two...

Him walking beside me... each step... near... attached together under His yoke...

His will... His Way...

As long as I stay under... He's matching my steps... right beside me... teaching...

Yes...



Thursday, October 9, 2014

Word for the day...

Facing a full day... I asked for a word...

He answered... Peace...

"...For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven
and do not return there but water the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.
For you shall go out in joy and be led in peace..."
Isaiah 55:8-12 ESV
(emphasis added)

Be joyous... for His thoughts... are not my thoughts...
My bent toward pessimism... pragmatism... this is not how He thinks...

Neither are His ways... my ways... another reason for joy...
My way lately... seems to be the hard way... the long way...
This is not His way...

His Word... like rain... will bring about growth... fulfill its purpose...
Trustworthy promises... powerful words... 
A reason for peace to prevail...

I shall go out in joy... and be led in peace...

Lord... thank You... for the Word...
Thank You... for the ability to go out in joy...
Thank You... for leading me... in peace...

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

His promises...

His promises... never fail...
His Word... always true...

And the lesson to the sixth graders... reverberates... in my life...

The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 
"Send men to spy out the land of Canaan, 
which I am giving to the people Israel. ..."
Numbers 13:1-2 ESV

He promised a land... but the land was filled... with giants... and fortified cities...

He promised to go before them... defeat the enemy... and give them the land...

But... they didn't believe... they didn't trust His Word...

They only trusted what they saw... and refused to move... even desired to go back to slavery in Egypt...

Today... I see a week... that does not look do-able...

Many things to get done... in a limited amount of time...

At this point... believing I am right where He wants me... I will trust His Word... when He says...

"...Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me,
for I am gentle and lowly in heart,
and you will find rest for your souls. ..."
Matthew 11:29 ESV

So in the face of "giant" to-dos...
I laugh with joy...
willing to learn...

His promises... never fail...
His Word... always true...

And we know, that for those who love God
all things work together for good,
for those who are called according to his purpose.
Romans 8:28 ESV

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

trusting Him... when He says...

Trusting Him... when He says...

"...Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden,
and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you,
and I will give you rest. ...
For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."
Matthew 11:28, 30 ESV

Keep me under Your yoke... Lord...
keep me under Your yoke...

Monday, October 6, 2014

He is Secret...

Another attribute to praise... one I didn't expect...

This morning's reading through tells me...

"The secret things belong to the Lord our God,
but the things that are revealed belong to us
and to our children forever, that we may do
all the words of the law. ..."
Deuteronomy 29:29 ESV

A little later... in preparation for leading prayer... I ask Him... How do we praise You today...?

Secret... comes to mind...

I argue a bit... The secret things belong to You... Yes... but You are not secret... are You...?

After all...

The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
Psalm 19:1 ESV

For what can be known about God is plain to them,
because God has shown it to them. For his invisible
attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature,
have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation
of the world, in the things that have been made.
Romans 1:19-20 ESV

I go about my day... waiting for a different answer to... How do we praise You today...?

No other answer comes... but the time to prepare does... so I sit...

Resigned... I say... Show me how You are Secret...
secret... adjective... 1 a: kept from knowledge or view: hidden b: marked by the habit of discretion: closemouthed c: working with hidden aims or methods: undercover... d: not acknowledged: unavowed... e: conducted in secret 2: remote from human frequentation or notice: secluded 3: revealed only to the initiated: esoteric 4: designed to elude observation or detection...
---Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary (11th Ed.)
The Hebrew... from the morning's read... means... hidden...

The Greek... translated secret... according to Louw-Nida means... in secret... privately...

I realize... for most of the world... He is secret... hidden... undercover...

Why does He hide Himself... secretly... away from the world...?

For one... if He showed up... those not yet in Christ would be destroyed...

For another... without faith... it is impossible to please Him...

There is a Way into the Secret... His name is Jesus... and He is no secret...

Jesus tells us His Father is in secret... and sees what's done in secret...

Secret prayers... secret fasting... these things please the Father... because He longs for a private... secret... intimate... relationship with you...

But this does not mean we keep what He shares with us in secret...

Some things Yes... but others No...

We are to share the Good News of a secret God with others... because our God is big enough to have a secret... private... relationship with everyone on the planet... and He desires it...!

He is a secret too good to keep to one's self...

We are to encourage others to begin their own secret relationship with Him... the journey of discipleship...

Yes... as weird as it seems... the God who reveals Himself through creation... is a Secret Hidden Treasure... waiting to be found...

"... You will seek me and find me,
when you seek me with all your heart. ..."
---the Lord
Jeremiah 29:13 ESV

Sunday, October 5, 2014

The Journey Readings: Week 40... and the Lord your God...

The wanderings of The Journey... through Genesis... Exodus... Numbers... Deuteronomy... highlight a reality I knew... but haven't really appreciated its magnitude...

He is the Lord your God...

The timing of the Israelites' exodus from captivity in Egypt was in God's hands... and based on the fullness of sin of those whose land they would be given...

God told Abraham...

"... In the fourth generation your descendants will come back here,
for the sin of the Amorites has not yet reached its full measure."
Genesis 15:16

God... the God of pagans... a gracious God waiting for their sin to reach its full measure before executing judgment... implying they had time to turn and be saved... if they acknowledged their true God...

Deuteronomy is God's preparation of the Israelites to enter the Promised Land... Moses sharing His Words with His people...

Chapter 28... filled with blessings... and curses... warns the Israelites regarding their possession of the Promised Land... and their responsibility to obey their God...

All these curses will come upon you and shall pursue you
and overtake you till you are destroyed, because you do not obey
the voice of the Lord your God...
Because you did not serve the Lord your God with joyfulness 
of [mind and] heart [in gratitude] for the abundance of all
[with which He had blessed you]...
Deuteronomy 28:45, 47 Amp

Being entrenched in a culture of relativism... and individuals being told they define their own truth based on what they believe... it's hard to wrap your mind around a God... who is God...

He is the Lord our God.... whether we obey or disobey... whether we believe or disbelieve... 

He is the Lord our God...

He is the God of the Buddhists... and God of the Muslims...
He is the God of Buddha... and of Mohammed...
He is the God of Americans... and God of the Nigerians...
He is God of the Lutherans... and God of the Presbyterians...
He is God of the Israelis... and God of the Palestinians...
He is the God of the atheists... and God of the Mennonites...

He is the Lord our God...

No matter who you are... or what you believe... the Lord our God... is your God...

The Mighty One, God the Lord,
speaks and summons the earth
from the rising of the sun to its setting.
Psalm 50:1 ESV

We have a Sovereign Creator... and He is the Lord your God... no matter who you are...

How does this reality effect your view...? of the world...? of others...?

Now that you know who He is... how should you respond...?

This journey... walking through His Word with Him... continues to increase knowledge... and understanding... 

What might you learn this week...? if you began to walk along...?

This week's readings...
Monday                  Deuteronomy 29-30
Tuesday                  Deuteronomy 31:1-29
Wednesday             Deuteronomy 31:30 - 32:52
Thursday                Deuteronomy 33-34
Friday                     Joshua 1-2

Friday, October 3, 2014

the evening offering... a return...

The time of evening offering... is becoming a joy... a need...

I see it as a time of returning to Him... at the end of the day...

It's where I consciously begin my morning... and there is something very restful... in making a conscious return...

Therefore tell the people: This is what the Lord Almighty says:
'Return to me,' declares the Lord Almighty, 
'and I will return to you,' says the Lord Almighty.
Zechariah 1:3

But it's not so much that He's left me... it's that I've let the busy-ness of the day... and the rush into evening... distract me from His presence...

Return to Me... and I will return to you...

Yes... there is rest... and joy... found in the evening offering... a return...

Thursday, October 2, 2014

growing pains...

Growing pains... I've seen some lately...

Growing pains... of the spiritual variety... I've even had one of my own recently...

I recognize them because I've had my share...

Growth almost always seems to come with pain...

The challenge to trust... persevere... stretch the limits of your faith... whether through a circumstance beyond your control... or a choice to be obedient to His Word or call... can be painful...

It's also painful to watch... but I encourage those who ask to press on... because I know what's on the other side...

Freedom... joy... and a heart with a greater capacity to rest in Him...

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds,
for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.
And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect
and complete, lacking nothing.
James 1:2-4 ESV

Still... the process is a journey... sometimes taking years... just to grow through one issue...

Today... I saw... or rather heard... the fruit being born of one I've been watching for years... and O the joy...!

So... if you're in the midst of growing pains at the moment... seek counsel... from Him... His Word... and one whose walked farther down the path than you...

Be encouraged to persevere... stay the narrow course... because what will be born... is glorious...!

So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord,
continue to live in him, rooted and built up in him,
strengthened in the faith as you were taught,
and overflowing with thankfulness.
Colossians 2:6-7

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

miraculous wednesdays...

She said... Every Wednesday is a miracle...

And today... I truly believe it...

My friend who sees the miracle... the director of children's ministry... the one at the head of an after school children's ministry...

148 children... Kindergarten through sixth grade...

Controlled chaos... from 2:45pm to 5:00pm...

Snacks...
Options...
Bible study...

Whew...!

All in the name of Jesus... because He said...

"Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them,
for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven. ..."
Matthew 19:14 ESV

If the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these... it's a very active place... filled with questions... and laughter...

I'm blessed to be a part of this chaos... and grateful for His grace He pours out on this place each day... especially... Wednesday...