Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Book of Battles
God had made all these grandiose promises to the people of Israel. Their fulfillment was there for the taking. Yet there are several places where they could not conquer - because of partial obedience.
While they were very young (Josh 9) they made a promise without asking for the Lord's counsel. They paid for it for a long long time. God punished them for making it and 400 years later He punished them for breaking it.
Father, Please keep me, my wife, my children from making rash promises or decisions that will harm us or hinder us from fully serving you. Please give us a heart of wisdom that listens to Your Spirit's prompting - especially when it comes to asking Your counsel at critical times in life. We might not even realize that a decision is critical until afterwards. But You know.
Friday, February 19, 2010
I'm not sure how possible that is. I think of "Liar Liar" and the scene where he goes into the corporate meeting and tells the truth about everyone. That's so possible. I mean, we're always holding our tongue, aren't we? So is it like: how offensive can you be?
Maybe that's not what a truth practitioner is. The only cross-reference is IJn1:6. Walking in the darkness/walking in the light = not practicing the truth / practicing the truth. Walking in the light = practicing the truth?
Maybe practicing the truth has more to do with the truth about me - the hardest truth to face. Or for that matter, the hardest truth to uncover.
Walking in the light / truth about me - what's that like?
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
He is so full of life!
That's how I was struck with John 1:4 this a.m. What was Jesus like? Well, "He was so full of life that he was (or His life was) the light to everyone who encountered Him." Jesus was so full of life that He could not help but attract a crowd. So much so that upon first meeting or seeing Him people would be "filled with amazement." Or, as Andrew said to Peter after meeting Him just once "come see, we have found the Messiah." Or, people would say "I never heard anyone speak as this man speaks."
People would line the trails to see Him, or climb into trees to get a glimpse. This was not just because He was popular, but because He was so full of life that people would say to one another "He is so unusual you just have to meet Him." Or, "I have never met such a man as this."
I can't imagine Him walking into the temple, standing on a platform and shouting "Ok, folks, I'm going to begin my teaching in 5 minutes, so run and get your friends!" No, He was like a people magnet. He couldn't help but to be noticed, followed, and listened to.
John Chapter 1 gives me some clues:
1. He was seen by others to be the manifested Word of God
2. His life was very "full" (v. 16, of His fullness ...)
3. He was full of grace and full of truth (of His fullness we received grace upon grace ... grace was realized through Jesus Messiah. Truth was realized thought Jesus Messiah)
4. He was glorious (we beheld His glory, like the only begotten of the Father)
5. He was known for unfolding, telling, declaring the Father to those who do not know what He is like.
6. He was light. He shone in the darkness and the darkness could not seize or overtake Him. But as they saw the light, the truth about God, they saw the truth about themselves. So many avoided Him because their deeds were evil.
Lord, help me understand this and notice this as I read the gospels. Help me see beyond the pre-conceived and pre-programmed image of You to see you full of life.
He was so full of life that this life was the light of men ... this was the true light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man.
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
Standing on the Threshold
How blessed is the man whose strength is in Thee, in whose heart are the highways to Zion.
Lord, I know there is a special blessing for those who actually go to Zion - to see, hear, smell, touch the very places where you walked. I know that this verse is referring to Zion Zion, and yet, you have placed Zion in my heart, for You have chosen to put the Most Holy Place within my heart.
When I seek You there, You turn the valley of weeping into a spring. There, in Your presence, is where You turn my tears into rains of blessing. In Your presence I go from strength to strength.
When I appear before You, You hear my prayer, You shine Your face upon me, You shield me from the afflictions of life. You put music in my heart, a song of thanksgiving to You.
Pr 15:15, for the afflicted, every day is a bad day. But when You give me a cheerful heart, I have a continual feast. I am most grateful.
A day in Your presence is so much better than a thousand days anywhere else. Anywhere.
There are mornings when I stand at the threshold, mornings when I don't have a strong sense of Your presence.
I would rather stand at the threshold of Your presence than dwell with the wicked. Spending time with you, even just at the threshold, is still better than the best day at the beach or the best ride on the trail. Because I trust in You I am greatly blessed. Many Many thanks, Lord.
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