|The LORD IS…|
|SLOW TO ANGER|
|vs. 11||GLORIOUS KING|
|GLORIOUS MAJESTIC KING|
|vs. 13||ETERNAL KING|
|THE LORD IS…|
|vs. 20||is JUST:|
|PRESERVES all who love Him.|
|DESTROYS all the wicked.|
|“…And||vs. 21||all flesh shall bless His holy name|
Forever and ever.”
may this be our meditation and Praise.
Blessed and Peace-filled New year to you!
The Persistent Widow (Luke 18:1-8)
Oh, the love of Jesus! The great, great, LOVE of Jesus.
Truly, all we like sheep have gone astray, drawn by distractions that lead us away from Him. YET, the Great Shepherd persistently and patiently seeks US out.
The two characteristics we observe in the widow in the parable in Luke 18:1-8 are persistence and patience. In many ways, these traits reflect the character of God, in Whose image we are created, and Whose love for us never ends.
As we grow and mature in knowing Him through His Word, we become aware of God’s character, often expressed through Jesus and the stories (parables) He shared. Those story lines are always captivating. The purpose of each is for us to notice/understand the character trait(s) taught. And…the ultimate lesson in each is to practice those trait(s) in our walk with Him, in this case, persistence and patience.
Help me, Lord, to become more like You in my character. And, help me to be a teachable student.
Wisdom shouts in the street,
She lifts her voice in the square;
At the head of the noisy streets she cries out;
At the entrance of the gates in the city, she utters her sayings;
“How long, O naïve ones, will you love simplicity?
And scoffers delight themselves in scoffing,
And fools hate knowledge?”
Proverbs 1:20-22 (NASB)
Will We Listen?
“Turn to my reproof,
Behold, I will pour out my spirit on you;
I will make my words known to you.”
Proverbs 1:23 (NASB)
Or… Endure the Consequences
“Because I called, and you refused;
I stretched out my hand, and no one paid attention;
And you neglected all my counsel,
And did not want my reproof;
“I will even laugh at your calamity;
I will mock when your dread comes,
When your dread comes like a storm,
And your calamity comes on like a whirlwind,
When distress and anguish come on you.
“Then they will call on me, but I will not answer;
They will seek me diligently, but they shall not find me,
Because they hated knowledge,
And did not choose the fear of the LORD.
“They would not accept my counsel,
They spurned all my reproof.
So They shall eat of the fruit of their own way,
and be satiated with their own devices.”
Proverbs 1:24-31 (NASB)
…Of Waywardness and Complacency
“For the waywardness of the naïve shall kill them,
And the complacency of fools shall destroy them.”
Proverbs 1:32 (NASB)
Or… Experience Safety and Security
“But he who listens to me shall live securely,
And shall be at ease from the dread of evil.”
Proverbs 1:33 (NASB)
Will we listen?
“….IF MY PEOPLE WHO ARE CALLED BY MY NAME WILL HUMBLE THEMSELVES,
AND PRAY AND SEEK MY FACE, AND TURN FROM THEIR WICKED WAYS,
THEN I WILL HEAR FROM Heaven, AND WILL FORGIVE Their SIN AND
HEAL THEIR LAND.”
2 Chronicles 7:14 (NJKV)
…a light to my path. -Psalm 119:105
…is a lamp to my feet. – Psalm 119:105
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.” (NKJV)
“He Will Deliver You”
Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler
And from the perilous pestilence.
He shall cover you with His feathers,
And under His wings you shall take refuge; (NKJV)
“His Truth….Your Shield”
His truth shall be your shield and buckler.
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day,
Nor of the pestilence that walks in the darkness,
Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday. (NKJV)
“A Thousand May Fall”
A thousand may fall at your side,
And ten thousand at your right hand;
But it shall not come near you.
Only with your eyes shall you look,
And see the reward of the wicked. (NKJV)
“The LORD….Your Dwelling Place”
Because you have made the LORD, who is my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place,
No evil shall befall you,
Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling;
For He shall give His angels charge over you,
To keep you in all your ways.
In their hands they shall bear you up,
Lest you dash your foot against a stone.
You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra,
The young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot. (NKJV)
Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him;
I will set him on high, because he has known My name.
He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble;
I will deliver him and honor him.
With long life I will satisfy him,
And show him My salvation. (NKJV)
The Secret Place: Deliverance, Truth, Shelter, Love!
Richest blessings to you!
Receiving a gift is exciting….
….we unwrap it, we examine it. We learn about it and enjoy it. And, we make the gift a part of our lives.
God gave us the ultimate gift – Jesus Christ – “the Word made flesh”. The Bible says: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son…” John 3:16
If we receive God’s gift of His Son, Jesus, into our hearts, we become His children. The Bible tells us: “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name…” John 1:12
If we study God’s Word, we then learn about Him, His ways, His love for us, and how He helps us to grow each day. The Bible says, “All Scripture is given….for instruction in righteousness…” 2 Timothy 3:16
Simply put, the Bible is God’s Word to us! And as we study it and its lessons, we discover and learn how to live as God, our Creator, designed us to live. And as a result, we please Him, plus, we experience His joy and peace.
In this process of reading and studying God’s Word, ask Jesus to join you, and to help you learn what He would have us know from His Holy Word. Enjoy your time reading God’s Word and getting to know Him better. And as the Holy Spirit leads and guides your eyes, your heart, your mind, and your spirit, you will grow as God designed you to grow.
Blessings to you as you read God’s Holy Word!
This week at our women’s Bible study, the Lord demonstrated His love toward me in a special way.
Our group leader described the making of a tapestry to illustrate a truth in our lives. She explained that the underside of a tapestry typically has many unsightly knots that are often created in the process of producing the masterpiece on the front side. As in the process of our lives, those “knots” represent “flaws” or “mistakes” that we have made. Another gal chimed in saying that those same knots also have another purpose, and that is, they provide strength and durability to the overall tapestry! Interesting!!
While thinking about all this, I realized that the “mistakes” I have made in my life – those “flaws”: poor decisions, disobedience to the Lord’s commands, not listening to His still small voice (1 Kings 19:12), choosing His permissive will over His perfect will (Romans 12:2), missing the mark (Philippians 3:14), have resulted in regrets, followed by repentance, on my part. But all this reminded me that because of His love, our Heavenly Father sent Jesus for that very reason, to work in us a tapestry reflecting His glory.
“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus
for good works, which God prepared beforehand that
we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10.
I find more expressions of Christ’s love, in the Truth of His Word in
2 Corinthians 12:9, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Or….
Romans 8:28, “….all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Or….
2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away, behold all things have become new.”
Well, after all this contemplation, I just “happened” to come across and read an article entitled Tapestry of Grace by Mark Johnson. Among the many points he shared, this one sums it up so well for me: “….the real hero on every page of Scripture is God – not man….God brings glory to Himself through imperfect people who are rich in faith.”
In closing, with the Lord confirming twice this understanding in me, this week, I am reminded anew of Galatians 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ: it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”(NKJV).
Dear Father, let this be our desire and our aim.
Blessings to you all.
In my last post, I shared my perspective on three significant current events that seem to be repeating Biblical history.
A fourth, that is in the forefront of today’s news, so resembles the pagan god, Molech, (referred to in Leviticus 18:21 & 20:21; 1 Kings 11:7; 2 Kings 23:10; Jeremiah 32:35; and Acts 7:43, to name a few), that it, too, deserves attention all its own. The deliberate taking of innocent lives, sadly, is not new.
Several years ago, I shared my thoughts regarding the implications of abortion. They go something like this:
Those affected by abortion include
- The aborted child.
- The hurting mother.
- The often forgotten father.
- Many un-informed grandparents.
- The siblings, left without more siblings.
- Un-informed aunts and uncles.
- The friends, left without classmates, schoolmates, and new friends.
- The future spouses, who find themselves alone.
- Society as a whole, which is founded upon all of the above.
At that time, those troubling thoughts were of great concern. However, today, some five-plus years later, they take on an entirely new meaning, one which grieves further the hearts of most of us. For as in the days of Moloch, we have and are repeating activities that grieve the very heart of our Loving God and Heavenly Father. In the process, we destroy innocent and vulnerable lives, (if that is not more than enough), and, also, ourselves. “For the wages of sin is death…” Romans 6:23a.
Lest we forget that we “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”, Romans 3:23, let us look at the latter part of Romans 6:23 above, “…but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
It’s time that we recognize that we need Him and need to ask His forgiveness. We are in need of a Savior, God’s Son, Jesus Christ, Who, while saving us from our sins, saves us from ourselves.
Dear merciful Lord, that is our prayer.