Thursday, June 30, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread Psalm 150

Psalms 150: 1 - 6
1 Praise the LORD! Praise God in his heavenly dwelling; praise him in his mighty heaven!
2 Praise him for his mighty works; praise his unequaled greatness!
3 Praise him with a blast of the trumpet; praise him with the lyre and harp!
4 Praise him with the tambourine and dancing; praise him with stringed instruments and flutes!
5 Praise him with a clash of cymbals; praise him with loud clanging cymbals.
6 Let everything that lives sing praises to the LORD! Praise the LORD!

Strong's Number: 01984
Original Word for "Praise"
Word Origin
Llh (Hebrew)
a primitive root
Transliterated Word
TWOT - 499,500
Phonetic Spelling
Parts of Speech
to shine
(Qal) to shine (fig. of God's favour)
(Hiphil) to flash forth light
to praise, boast, be boastful
to be boastful
boastful ones, boasters (participle)
to praise
to boast, make a boast
to be praised, nts~e made praiseworthy, be commended, be worthy of praise
(Hithpael) to boast, glory, make one's boast
(Poel) to make a fool of, make into a fool
(Hithpoel) to act madly, act like a madman
~Lena's Comments ~
I guess the last verse defines praise in its rightful use and states why some may not participate. It says all who are alive - Praise the Lord! Praise is an action word, an active response, a celebratory action. The world finds ways and people to celebrate all of the time, why would we, who were created by God Most High, not be exploding with thankfulness and exuberant praise? Only the curse of death can cause anyone to not express love in an outward action. If we’ve been dead, He’s made us alive, by His resurrecting power. He asks us to be alive unto Him and dead to sin. Sin should be what gets no response from us, not God and His greatness, not the Lord and His excellent deeds! Dead to sin, alive in praise to God! If we are alive to sin in that we respond to its call and we express ourselves towards its leadership, we just need to wake up and intentionally divert our attentions elsewhere- on God and all that He is. To whom or whatever we give praise, we also give attention to and we give service to and we give our lives to. Let’s rise up and praise Him!

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread Psalm 149

Psalms 149: 1 - 9
1 Praise the LORD! Sing to the LORD a new song. Sing his praises in the assembly of the faithful. 2 O Israel, rejoice in your Maker. O people of Jerusalem, exult in your King. 3 Praise his name with dancing, accompanied by tambourine and harp. 4 For the LORD delights in his people; he crowns the humble with salvation. 5 Let the faithful rejoice in this honor. Let them sing for joy as they lie on their beds.
6 Let the praises of God be in their mouths, and a sharp sword in their hands – 7 to execute vengeance on the nations and punishment on the peoples, 8 to bind their kings with shackles and their leaders with iron chains, 9 to execute the judgment written against them. This is the glory of his faithful ones. Praise the LORD!
~ Lena's Comments~
Here’s one like "reason" we assemble together with other Christians. To worship. One cannot be a band alone, and one cannot sing in an assembly in their own tent. Israel is plural, a nation is not one person, but is one in unit. People is plural, how many of you can dance, sing, play the tambourine and the harp all at the same time? "You Go girl!" Praises, and mouths are plural, note all of the other plural nouns. God wants Children, plural, not one or two, but nations- full, until the whole earth is covered with peoples who praise, love & serve Him and others. Notice who binds, fights, punishes, executes, etc? We do. Think on that one.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread Psalm 148

Psalms 148: 1 - 14
1 Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD from the heavens! Praise him from the skies! 2 Praise him, all his angels! Praise him, all the armies of heaven! 3 Praise him, sun and moon! Praise him, all you twinkling stars! 4 Praise him, skies above! Praise him, vapors high above the clouds! 5 Let every created thing give praise to the LORD, for he issued his command, and they came into being. 6 He established them forever and forever. His orders will never be revoked.
7 Praise the LORD from the earth, you creatures of the ocean depths, 8 fire and hail, snow and storm, wind and weather that obey him, 9 mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars, 10 wild animals and all livestock, reptiles and birds, 11 kings of the earth and all people, rulers and judges of the earth, 12 young men and maidens, old men and children. 13 Let them all praise the name of the LORD. For his name is very great; his glory towers over the earth and heaven! 14 He has made his people strong, honoring his godly ones – the people of Israel who are close to him. Praise the LORD!
~Lena's Comments~
Can you even imagine an order, or lets rather call it- a word, that cannot be revoked? How does that make one feel? Comfortable or Uncomfortable? Is it about our comfort? Natural or Eternal? What if He changed His mind about the sun shining this next month or year? What if He made people, then decided to play around a bit and stop all water sources, just for "fun" to see what it would look like? Why would it be God to establish and leave as is? Is anything good unchanged? I often think of how we desire for God’s words to be true, yet we have a hard time believing they are true based upon the actions of men and women we see everyday; people who change their word at the click of a pen, and then we wonder about promises. Are they made to keep or break? Why do we depend upon God’s words, yet do not count ourselves like Him and practice keeping ours to Him and then to others? Is that even right, to put such a huge expectation with disappointment involved and anger when we feel He does not respond? He made us to look for words to be kept in place, for us to depend upon the sun’s rising, to look for the rain. He wants us to believe He will keep His word, and shun any other deceptive & lying thought. He is worthy of our praise, He is awesome in His creative power, He is great and eternal, and He is in love with us! Vs 8 says, the weather obeys God. WOW, why would we resist Him, rebel against Him? PTL !!! Did you know that when you join creation in praise to God, you obey Him? Obedience is blessed in what it does. Amen. Be blessed.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread Psalm 147

Good/God Monday 2 U
I've been away this weekend- went on an Encounter weekend away with the Lord. I'm back and so very blessed by all of you, who would even take time to read God 's word with me everyday and take some extra time to get to know some of the things God is saying to me through His word and in doing so learning about who I am in Christ also and even following me as I follow Christ. I want to encourage any of you to respond back when God also speaks with you- either hit "reply" to share your God thought with the whole list, or reposond to me personally at my own e-mail address: The best fellowship any Christians could have is the fellowship of His word. It is the most intimate kind. ( worship is included in that). I mean rather than fellowshiping our day in the world, which helps us know we have friends, or fellowshiping our problems, which causes us to feel we have family, but fellowshipping the word says we truely have covenant and it fulfills the great commission our Lord gave us, which is to go and make, not friends or family, but disciples- which we know can include both friends and family and oh so much more. What pleasure God must have when we come together over His word- daily! He loves you so much and I love you so much,be blessed today ~Lena

Psalm 147
1 PRAISE THE Lord! For it is good to sing praises to our God, for He is gracious and lovely; praise is becoming and appropriate. 2 The Lord is building up Jerusalem; He is gathering together the exiles of Israel. 3 He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds [curing their pains and their sorrows]. 4 He determines and counts the number of the stars; He calls them all by their names. 5 Great is our Lord and of great power; His understanding is inexhaustible and boundless. 6 The Lord lifts up the humble and downtrodden; He casts the wicked down to the ground.
7 Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving; sing praises with the harp or the lyre to our God!-- 8 Who covers the heavens with clouds, Who prepares rain for the earth, Who makes grass to grow on the mountains. 9 He gives to the beast his food, and to the young ravens that for which they cry. 10 He delights not in the strength of the horse, nor does He take pleasure in the legs of a man. 11 The Lord takes pleasure in those who reverently and worshipfully fear Him, in those who hope in His mercy and loving-kindness. 12 Praise the Lord, O Jerusalem! Praise your God, O Zion! 13 For He has strengthened and made hard the bars of your gates, and He has blessed your children within you. 14 He makes peace in your borders; He fills you with the finest of the wheat. 15 He sends forth His commandment to the earth; His word runs very swiftly. 16 He gives [to the earth] snow like [a blanket of] wool; He scatters the hoarfrost like ashes. 17 He casts forth His ice like crumbs; who can stand before His cold? 18 He sends out His word, and melts [ice and snow]; He causes His wind to blow, and the waters flow. 19 He declares His word to Jacob, His statutes and His ordinances to Israel. 20 He has not dealt so with any [other] nation; they have not known (understood, appreciated, given heed to, and cherished) His ordinances. Praise the Lord! (Hallelujah!)
~ Lena’s Comments ~
We at times wonder what is good, what is right to do. Praising God is good and right. Praising God is like love, it is based upon a decision, not a feeling. Emotions add to its intensity, but not its purpose. God is good, gracious and lovely and we are copycats. Praise puts us in his presence where we see how He is, and then we become Him, and we also begin to be good, lovely and gracious. One can tell when Christians have not been with Him, copying Him regularly. They carry their own scent or the scent of the world rather than the scent of His presence. How does the Lord build the church? What or who does he use? He builds with materials, strong structure that will stand the weather, the abuses of people, the enemy fire, and the test of time. What does He use for the material? Life, lives, that’s what He uses. These materials are the character of people, how well does one’s character stand in adversity? How much can they hold of God’s presence, against God’s enemies and for others till they are able to also stand firm as walls for God’s house? God protects His won, and how does he know we are His own? Rather than opposing Him or spending time with others where we smell like they do, we praise Him, we’re with Him, we smell like Him, we look like Him. How does it happen that change graces our lives? Being in His presence of praise. How do we get strong? Praise. How are we molded in character? By praising God no matter what! This is almost funny, God is God right? I mean He is God! As I read this Psalm, I feel the author is having to talk me into praising GOD! Doesn’t that seem odd? Wouldn’t one think that that would be an automatic response of creation towards their Creator? Why would I have to be prompted? Because another has lied, distracted and drawn my attentions and desires elsewhere for so long, that I have to be prodded to come back to where I belong, where I was created to live, and see and get a glimpse, of who He is. Three things I know from the word of God that please God, Praise, Obedience and Faith. I’ve heard people ask how they can please God. Live in faith with obedience to faith in God and continually praise Him. Is that simple? Yes, and no, it is all a matter of the will, Saying yes to God makes it all much less of a struggle than if we say yes to ourselves, the ways we’ve known from the world’s rebellion, etc. There is no other kind of persons than those who praise their God!

Friday, June 24, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread Luke 6 ~Lena's Comments diff color~

Luke 6: 1 - 49
1 One Sabbath day as Jesus was walking through some grainfields, his disciples broke off heads of wheat, rubbed off the husks in their hands, and ate the grains. 2 But some Pharisees said, "You shouldn't be doing that! It's against the law to work by harvesting grain on the Sabbath." I’m amazed that the complaint issued was not one that had to do with stealing, but rather had to do with harvesting. What brings life and more abundant life? Whatever that is, is the Sabbath’s purpose. It is where man is given over to the work of God, no longer his own petty work, with limited strength, but he gives who and what he is over to the work of God’s spirit and God’s will.
3 Jesus replied, "Haven't you ever read in the Scriptures what King David did when he and his companions were hungry? 4 He went into the house of God, ate the special bread reserved for the priests alone, and then gave some to his friends. That was breaking the law, too." 5 And Jesus added, "I, the Son of Man, am master even of the Sabbath."
6 On another Sabbath day, a man with a deformed right hand was in the synagogue while Jesus was teaching. 7 The teachers of religious law and the Pharisees watched closely to see whether Jesus would heal the man on the Sabbath, because they were eager to find some legal charge to bring against him. 8 But Jesus knew their thoughts. He said to the man with the deformed hand, "Come and stand here where everyone can see." So the man came forward. 9 Then Jesus said to his critics, "I have a question for you. Is it legal to do good deeds on the Sabbath, or is it a day for doing harm? Is this a day to save life or to destroy it?" 10 He looked around at them one by one and then said to the man, "Reach out your hand." The man reached out his hand, and it became normal again! 11 At this, the enemies of Jesus were wild with rage and began to discuss what to do with him.
12 One day soon afterward Jesus went to a mountain to pray, and he prayed to God all night. 13 At daybreak he called together all of his disciples and chose twelve of them to be apostles. Here are their names: 14 Simon (he also called him Peter), Andrew (Peter's brother), James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, 15 Matthew, Thomas, James (son of Alphaeus), Simon (the Zealot), 16 Judas (son of James), Judas Iscariot (who later betrayed him). 17 When they came down the slopes of the mountain, the disciples stood with Jesus on a large, level area, surrounded by many of his followers and by the crowds. There were people from all over Judea and from Jerusalem and from as far north as the seacoasts of Tyre and Sidon. 18 They had come to hear him and to be healed, and Jesus cast out many evil spirits. 19 Everyone was trying to touch him, because healing power went out from him, and they were all cured.
20 Then Jesus turned to his disciples and said, "God blesses you who are poor, for the Kingdom of God is given to you. 21 God blesses you who are hungry now, for you will be satisfied. God blesses you who weep now, for the time will come when you will laugh with joy. 22 God blesses you who are hated and excluded and mocked and cursed because you are identified with me, the Son of Man. 23 "When that happens, rejoice! Yes, leap for joy! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were also treated that way by your ancestors.
24 "What sorrows await you who are rich, for you have your only happiness now. 25 What sorrows await you who are satisfied and prosperous now, for a time of awful hunger is before you. What sorrows await you who laugh carelessly, for your laughing will turn to mourning and sorrow. 26 What sorrows await you who are praised by the crowds, for their ancestors also praised false prophets. Jesus speaks here of the natural now realm in comparison to the invisible real realm, the eternal realm, which is more real than any enemy wants us to ever think about. The satisfaction of self for self, is extremely temporary and only has enough reward to last as long as we are here. When we leave, we will instantly know of what is really real, we will instantly know of what all we did to make deposits into that realm and we will know if we pleased God and did anything at all towards His will and purposes, or if we will see what all we thought was real and invested our lives in, by giving all our time and worship and strength towards, we will see that it will all go up in smoke in a matter of moments, all of it’s efforts will be swept away there with it. It will literally mean nothing and have been a life lived for nothing and no one, but that one, which is not exactly One without God, that is –self.
27 "But if you are willing to listen, I say,
love your enemies.
Do good to those who hate you.
28 Pray for the happiness of those who curse you.
Pray for those who hurt you.
29 If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn the other cheek.
If someone demands your coat, offer your shirt also.
30 Give what you have to anyone who asks you for it; and when things are taken away from you, don't try to get them back.
31 Do for others as you would like them to do for you.
32 "Do you think you deserve credit merely for loving those who love you? Even the sinners do that! 33 And if you do good only to those who do good to you, is that so wonderful? Even sinners do that much! 34 And if you lend money only to those who can repay you, what good is that? Even sinners will lend to their own kind for a full return.
35 "Love your enemies!
Do good to them! Lend to them! And don't be concerned that they might not repay. Then your reward from heaven will be very great, and you will truly be acting as children of the Most High, for he is kind to the unthankful and to those who are wicked.
36 You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate.
37 "Stop judging others, and you will not be judged.
Stop criticizing others, or it will all come back on you.
If you forgive others, you will be forgiven.
38 If you give, you will receive.
Your gift will return to you in full measure, pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, and running over. Whatever measure you use in giving – large or small – it will be used to measure what is given back to you."
39 Then Jesus gave the following illustration: "What good is it for one blind person to lead another? The first one will fall into a ditch and pull the other down also. 40 A student is not greater than the teacher. But the student who works hard will become like the teacher.
41 "And why worry about a speck in your friend's eye when you have a log in your own? 42 How can you think of saying, 'Friend, let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,' when you can't see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log from your own eye; then perhaps you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend's eye.
43 "A good tree can't produce bad fruit, and a bad tree can't produce good fruit. 44 A tree is identified by the kind of fruit it produces. Figs never grow on thorn bushes or grapes on bramble bushes. 45 A good person produces good deeds from a good heart, and an evil person produces evil deeds from an evil heart.
Whatever is in your heart determines what you say.
46 "So why do you call me 'Lord,' when you won't obey me? 47 I will show you what it's like when someone comes to me, listens to my teaching, and then obeys me. 48 It is like a person who builds a house on a strong foundation laid upon the underlying rock. When the floodwaters rise and break against the house, it stands firm because it is well built. 49 But anyone who listens and doesn't obey is like a person who builds a house without a foundation. When the floods sweep down against that house, it will crumble into a heap of ruins." We call Him "Lord, Lord" because we want others to think we follow and obey Him. This is self exalting religious thinking. It is easy to tell those who are really His "subjects", by the fruits of the obedience to His Lordship. Is your house standing firm or is it falling down? Have the floods come yet? When they do what happens to your house? Actually you are God’s house, what happens to God’s house? Did it stand or fall?

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread Mark 5 Lena's Comments in red

Mark 5: 1 - 43
1 So they arrived at the other side of the lake, in the land of the Gerasenes. 2 Just as Jesus was climbing from the boat, a man possessed by an evil spirit ran out from a cemetery to meet him. 3 This man lived among the tombs and could not be restrained, even with a chain. 4 Whenever he was put into chains and shackles – as he often was – he snapped the chains from his wrists and smashed the shackles. No one was strong enough to control him. 5 All day long and throughout the night, he would wander among the tombs and in the hills, screaming and hitting himself with stones. The man lived continually in a place of death, he was unrestrainable. Whenever people tried to tell him what to do, put any kind of order in his life, he snapped. No one could ever tell him what to do in any instance, he was his own governor, yet there was no government in his life, actually there was no life in that kind of place where he lived, he lived around death. He even hurt himself continually, by what he did, he hardly slept, he was in torment. It’s like the imposition of government was on him to help him, but he resisted it, because he felt it hurt him, but what he was doing and how he was thinking was actually killing him. The influences in and around him did not want him to see this clearly, they are the forces that are against God and all who are made in His image and all they want is his images dead
6 When Jesus was still some distance away, the man saw him. He ran to meet Jesus and fell down before him. 7 He gave a terrible scream, shrieking, "Why are you bothering me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? For God's sake, don't torture me!" 8 For Jesus had already said to the spirit, "Come out of the man, you evil spirit." 9 Then Jesus asked, "What is your name?" And the spirit replied, "Legion, because there are many of us here inside this man." 10 Then the spirits begged him again and again not to send them to some distant place. 11 There happened to be a large herd of pigs feeding on the hillside nearby. 12 "Send us into those pigs," the evil spirits begged. 13 Jesus gave them permission. So the evil spirits came out of the man and entered the pigs, and the entire herd of two thousand pigs plunged down the steep hillside into the lake, where they drowned. Even though the man was influenced by evil, his spirit within him, deep within his being recognized God, and magnetized towards life. He was in such bondage that he could not speak for himself, the influencers of his life spoke up for him, trying to keep him bound up, if he won’t speak up they will. The evil spirits wanted the man to believe that being with God was tormentous, and it was if changes were not made, because life and death cannot dwell together. But Jesus was there to give life, and help change the state of the man so he could/would live. Begging and pleading will not change the work jesus was sent to do, He is intent on our freedom.
14 The herdsmen fled to the nearby city and the surrounding countryside, spreading the news as they ran. Everyone rushed out to see for themselves. 15 A crowd soon gathered around Jesus, but they were frightened when they saw the man who had been demon possessed, for he was sitting there fully clothed and perfectly sane. 16 Those who had seen what happened to the man and to the pigs told everyone about it, 17 and the crowd began pleading with Jesus to go away and leave them alone. It is an amazing thing for one to get free, it is an amazing thing that God could find me where I am and change me. I try, but I cannot even change myself, in fact I end up hurting myself. They went and told everyone….yet they were themselves afraid of it. Why? We all are afraid of the process it will take to take us from death unto life. What will He have to do to me? What about what can He do for me? The enemy has lied to us about us and about Him and about the process. We’ve got to get a glimpse of God’s love and know whatever change is for life and removes the stench of death on us.
18 When Jesus got back into the boat, the man who had been demon possessed begged to go, too. 19 But Jesus said, "No, go home to your friends, and tell them what wonderful things the Lord has done for you and how merciful he has been." 20 So the man started off to visit the Ten Towns of that region and began to tell everyone about the great things Jesus had done for him; and everyone was amazed at what he told them. Isn’t that awesome how free this man was, that he went as his own personal witness of the truth of freedom and he began in the cities around him. That was only a beginning, he continued from there for the rest of his life. We cannot continue to tell about others’ freedom, we’ve got to get into the process ourselves, have our own testimony to live and tell. Jesus didn’t want the changed man to go on with Jesus to another place, because he would be a more effective witness right where he was at, because people knew him there how he was and would see for themselves how he is now. Jesus wasn’t saying he didn’t want the man to be with him, but in doing this he was "with " the Lord and the Lord was "with" him!
21 When Jesus went back across to the other side of the lake, a large crowd gathered around him on the shore. 22 A leader of the local synagogue, whose name was Jairus, came and fell down before him, 23 pleading with him to heal his little daughter. "She is about to die," he said in desperation. "Please come and place your hands on her; heal her so she can live." 24 Jesus went with him, and the crowd thronged behind. 25 And there was a woman in the crowd who had had a hemorrhage for twelve years. 26 She had suffered a great deal from many doctors through the years and had spent everything she had to pay them, but she had gotten no better. In fact, she was worse. 27 She had heard about Jesus, so she came up behind him through the crowd and touched the fringe of his robe. 28 For she thought to herself, "If I can just touch his clothing, I will be healed." 29 Immediately the bleeding stopped, and she could feel that she had been healed! 30 Jesus realized at once that healing power had gone out from him, so he turned around in the crowd and asked, "Who touched my clothes?" 31 His disciples said to him, "All this crowd is pressing around you. How can you ask, 'Who touched me?'" 32 But he kept on looking around to see who had done it. 33 Then the frightened woman, trembling at the realization of what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and told him what she had done. 34 And he said to her, "Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace. You have been healed." Other translations say- virtue left Him. The woman in need actually took virtue out of Jesus? Drew it out f Him to meet her need! That is amazing to me, but that is what faith does, how faith works. These people were intent on change, unlike the crazy man, who resisted change, yet yearned for it, they asked for it. Notice all 3 had change come to them from the virtue of the Lord. All of them had death erased and life replaced. None of their situations were too difficult for God’s power, for God’s freeing desire!
35 While he was still speaking to her, messengers arrived from Jairus's home with the message, "Your daughter is dead. There's no use troubling the Teacher now." 36 But Jesus ignored their comments and said to Jairus, "Don't be afraid. Just trust me." 37 Then Jesus stopped the crowd and wouldn't let anyone go with him except Peter and James and John. 38 When they came to the home of the synagogue leader, Jesus saw the commotion and the weeping and wailing. 39 He went inside and spoke to the people. "Why all this weeping and commotion?" he asked. "The child isn't dead; she is only asleep." 40 The crowd laughed at him, but he told them all to go outside. Then he took the girl's father and mother and his three disciples into the room where the girl was lying. 41 Holding her hand, he said to her, "Get up, little girl!" 42 And the girl, who was twelve years old, immediately stood up and walked around! Her parents were absolutely overwhelmed. 43 Jesus commanded them not to tell anyone what had happened, and he told them to give her something to eat. Jesus ignored their comments. That is exactly what we have to do, ignore the call of death, ignore the report of death, become intent on life no matter what. Jesus said DON’T be afraid, if we’re not afraid, what are we? At peace, at rest, filled with hope, with faith? Yes. He had to ignore the wailing of others, who believed in death. It is all about death and life. Death and life are in the power of the tongue as we seed demonstrated here.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Our Daily Bread Hebrews 11

Hebrews 11: 1 – 40
1 What is faith? It is the confident assurance that what we hope for is going to happen. It is the evidence of things we cannot yet see. 2 God gave his approval to people in days of old because of their faith. 3 By faith we understand that the entire universe was formed at God's command, that what we now see did not come from anything that can be seen.
4 It was by faith that Abel brought a more acceptable offering to God than Cain did. God accepted Abel's offering to show that he was a righteous man. And although Abel is long dead, he still speaks to us because of his faith. 5 It was by faith that Enoch was taken up to heaven without dying – "suddenly he disappeared because God took him." But before he was taken up, he was approved as pleasing to God. 6 So, you see, it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that there is a God and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him.
7 It was by faith that Noah built an ark to save his family from the flood. He obeyed God, who warned him about something that had never happened before. By his faith he condemned the rest of the world and was made right in God's sight. 8 It was by faith that Abraham obeyed when God called him to leave home and go to another land that God would give him as his inheritance. He went without knowing where he was going. 9 And even when he reached the land God promised him, he lived there by faith – for he was like a foreigner, living in a tent. And so did Isaac and Jacob, to whom God gave the same promise. 10 Abraham did this because he was confidently looking forward to a city with eternal foundations, a city designed and built by God. 11 It was by faith that Sarah together with Abraham was able to have a child, even though they were too old and Sarah was barren. Abraham believed that God would keep his promise. 12 And so a whole nation came from this one man, Abraham, who was too old to have any children – a nation with so many people that, like the stars of the sky and the sand on the seashore, there is no way to count them. 13 All these faithful ones died without receiving what God had promised them, but they saw it all from a distance and welcomed the promises of God. They agreed that they were no more than foreigners and nomads here on earth. 14 And obviously people who talk like that are looking forward to a country they can call their own. 15 If they had meant the country they came from, they would have found a way to go back. 16 But they were looking for a better place, a heavenly homeland. That is why God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a heavenly city for them. 17 It was by faith that Abraham offered Isaac as a sacrifice when God was testing him. Abraham, who had received God's promises, was ready to sacrifice his only son, Isaac, 18 though God had promised him, "Isaac is the son through whom your descendants will be counted." 19 Abraham assumed that if Isaac died, God was able to bring him back to life again. And in a sense, Abraham did receive his son back from the dead. 20 It was by faith that Isaac blessed his two sons, Jacob and Esau. He had confidence in what God was going to do in the future. 21 It was by faith that Jacob, when he was old and dying, blessed each of Joseph's sons and bowed in worship as he leaned on his staff. 22 And it was by faith that Joseph, when he was about to die, confidently spoke of God's bringing the people of Israel out of Egypt. He was so sure of it that he commanded them to carry his bones with them when they left! 23 It was by faith that Moses' parents hid him for three months. They saw that God had given them an unusual child, and they were not afraid of what the king might do. 24 It was by faith that Moses, when he grew up, refused to be treated as the son of Pharaoh's daughter. 25 He chose to share the oppression of God's people instead of enjoying the fleeting pleasures of sin. 26 He thought it was better to suffer for the sake of the Messiah than to own the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking ahead to the great reward that God would give him. 27 It was by faith that Moses left the land of Egypt. He was not afraid of the king. Moses kept right on going because he kept his eyes on the one who is invisible. 28 It was by faith that Moses commanded the people of Israel to keep the Passover and to sprinkle blood on the doorposts so that the angel of death would not kill their firstborn sons. 29 It was by faith that the people of Israel went right through the Red Sea as though they were on dry ground. But when the Egyptians followed, they were all drowned. 30 It was by faith that the people of Israel marched around Jericho seven days, and the walls came crashing down. 31 It was by faith that Rahab the prostitute did not die with all the others in her city who refused to obey God. For she had given a friendly welcome to the spies.
32 Well, how much more do I need to say? It would take too long to recount the stories of the faith of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and all the prophets. 33 By faith these people overthrew kingdoms, ruled with justice, and received what God had promised them. They shut the mouths of lions, 34 quenched the flames of fire, and escaped death by the edge of the sword. Their weakness was turned to strength. They became strong in battle and put whole armies to flight. 35 Women received their loved ones back again from death. But others trusted God and were tortured, preferring to die rather than turn from God and be free. They placed their hope in the resurrection to a better life. 36 Some were mocked, and their backs were cut open with whips. Others were chained in dungeons. 37 Some died by stoning, and some were sawed in half; others were killed with the sword. Some went about in skins of sheep and goats, hungry and oppressed and mistreated. 38 They were too good for this world. They wandered over deserts and mountains, hiding in caves and holes in the ground. 39 All of these people we have mentioned received God's approval because of their faith, yet none of them received all that God had promised. 40 For God had far better things in mind for us that would also benefit them, for they can't receive the prize at the end of the race until we finish the race.
~Lena’s Comments~
Inside of faith lies a great deal of trust, the ability to trust who we do not see, because of the evidences given to us and the offer to do so. Love is the basis of faith. God’s love puts us in the place where we can even consider believing. Believing in what is not seen is the very nature of God. It is where miracles come from, it is how creation is birthed, it is even life appears, is nurtured and grows. There is so much we do not see, yet believe, and we act on it as an everyday part of assumed life. This is because God places a component in us to be faith filled beings as He is. It is the creative component of God’s character, and of ours who are made in His image and likeness. Have you ever done something of your own initiative that you’ve never done before? Of course you have, That action was based on faith, maybe in yourself, but it was faith. Why do we have such a hard time believing in another? Pride is the root issue. The innate fleshly desire to be ones own god independent from any other. That is a deception, it is not possible. We may be able to act as our own god, but we can never save ourselves from the penalty of that nature played out. It is life to have faith in God, have God’s kind of faith. Any other way is death. Faith has everything to do with vision, eyesight, foresight into the eternal realm where we see our citizenship being. It puts us here in this place now, temporarily, but knows we are only here for His eternal purposes to be fulfilled, in comparison to our being here to enjoy life for a term and watch it disappear. This is one reason people have such a hard time with death, they see it as final, rather than the transition from one life to another life, or they do not understand God and His call to them and have not yet made an eternal relationship with God understanding how temporary this time is and how we only have a small time allotment here to make an eternal difference, an eternal impact upon anyone who still needs to get this vision. It is very, very hard to endure any kind of hardship here without vision, and our enemy wants to make things hard for us. Why would we become subject to hardships of life on earth? Because we have to? Or because we are willing to if in any way it promotes the promise of God for anyone for their future of eternity? I always think about the verse where it says that they died not having received the promises, having not seen them for themselves in their lifetime. Why would they have any confidence and not feel they’d failed? Because through faith they saw the promise and that their actions were puzzle pieces in the greater picture of the eternal impact of that promise being put together for other generations. It is all a set up. God set Jesus’ coming up for at least 4,000 years! The longest living human in that time frame was less than 1,000 years old. God used that person to set us up for the Salvation Promise to be fulfilled in the future, about say 100 generations later on. We have to live by faith in God, all other faith will fail us.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

ok this is it

1 Timothy 3: 1 - 16
1 It is a true saying that if someone wants to be an elder, he desires an honorable responsibility. 2 For an elder must be a man whose life cannot be spoken against. He must be faithful to his wife. He must exhibit self-control, live wisely, and have a good reputation. He must enjoy having guests in his home and must be able to teach. 3 He must not be a heavy drinker or be violent. He must be gentle, peace loving, and not one who loves money. 4 He must manage his own family well, with children who respect and obey him. 5 For if a man cannot manage his own household, how can he take care of God's church? 6 An elder must not be a new Christian, because he might be proud of being chosen so soon, and the Devil will use that pride to make him fall. 7 Also, people outside the church must speak well of him so that he will not fall into the Devil's trap and be disgraced.
8 In the same way, deacons must be people who are respected and have integrity. They must not be heavy drinkers and must not be greedy for money. 9 They must be committed to the revealed truths of the Christian faith and must live with a clear conscience. 10 Before they are appointed as deacons, they should be given other responsibilities in the church as a test of their character and ability. If they do well, then they may serve as deacons. 11 In the same way, their wives must be respected and must not speak evil of others. They must exercise self-control and be faithful in everything they do. 12 A deacon must be faithful to his wife, and he must manage his children and household well. 13 Those who do well as deacons will be rewarded with respect from others and will have increased confidence in their faith in Christ Jesus.
14 I am writing these things to you now, even though I hope to be with you soon, 15 so that if I can't come for a while, you will know how people must conduct themselves in the household of God. This is the church of the living God, which is the pillar and support of the truth. 16 Without question, this is the great mystery of our faith: Christ appeared in the flesh and was shown to be righteous by the Spirit. He was seen by angels and was announced to the nations. He was believed on in the world and was taken up into heaven
~Lena’s Comments~
An "elder" is an overseer, one who helps others by example and teaching. Aren’t all of us elders in someway? Whether in our homes, or at our places of employment or in our community or churches, we are all examples to someone and have influence on someone somewhere. On that is more mature, may realize this and actually desire to be an influencer with purpose involved. I’ve heard a lot of people who have realized that others watch their lives say, "I don’t want them looking at and following after me." That is understandable to not enjoy the "scrutiny" that can come from being an example, but when one understands this is the way God created us and he placed us strategically in places of influence that we may deposit His image in others, we then arise as "grown ups" and take on the task with joy, because of the purpose involved. This is what this "elder" has done, he desires what God desires and is submitting his life to be a responsible steward over God’s fields of harvest. Notice it says if someone desires this position. In literature the word "he" or "man", is used to reference all of humankind. I did look this word up in the Greek and it’s meaning was "whoever". Remember woman came from man and they two were and now as separated beings are one flesh. What an awesome mystery, the two were and then again became one. Anyway, let’s look at the passage as it applies to the lives of all Christians in all positions and circumstances. (home, work, community, church). Why would it matter at all what other think of us? Think, "of good reputation" in the community. Why would that matter at all? Who cares what people think of me, my family, or whatever it is we decide to do, right? Not righteous thinking, maybe right by the world’s independent spirit’s standards, but this is not how God thinks. He made us to be copied, just as when he made us he copied Himself. This was a model he desired to perpetuate through you and I. When we get personal we’d do that for our kids, but not for the world? The world are God’s kids and he cares what they think of the people who are His Body, His church. Reputation is very important. What we do, where we find ourselves going, who we hang with regularly, what we listen to etc, are all very important, They tell who we are #1 and also who’s we are. We may say Jesus is Lord- Hallelujah, but if we do not prove it by how we live, as far as the world is concerned we are lying and they don’t want to be like us at all. They hate hypocrites.
The word "deacon" means "servant". Servants carry the very character of Christ, who was God yet came to give it all up becoming a servant for the purpose of saving others. Why would we serve in God’s house? In the church facility? Because we love God and we love His people enough to even care for their physical, leading to meeting their spiritual needs. We are participators in His literal family and are willing to show it by even sharing in the practical responsibilities.
These are both titles of leadership in Christ’s Body. God wants His people to desire His holiness enough to desire to be proven and given titles that they uphold responsibly. Why would anyone want a title like that? To glorify God more, to prove and show His integrity. To shine forth His love and light. Titles put us in positions to see the importance of developing and maintaining Christian character on purpose. Before you were a parent, you thought and acted one way, after putting on the title "father" or "mother" you acted and thought differently, you persued responsibility on purpose. God so desires a people who will rise up on purpose, who will be proven on purpose, who will be seen by others on purpose, who will be on display to glorify Him, who will respond to Him and copy Him and allow others to copy Him too.
1-е Тимофею 4
1Дух же ясно говорит, что в последние времена отступят некоторые от веры, внимая духам обольстителям и учениям бесовским,
2через лицемерие лжесловесников, сожженных в совести своей,
3запрещающих вступать в брак [и] употреблять в пищу то, что Бог сотворил, дабы верные и познавшие истину вкушали с благодарением.
4Ибо всякое творение Божие хорошо, и ничто не предосудительно, если принимается с благодарением,
5потому что освящается словом Божиим и молитвою.
6Внушая сие братиям, будешь добрый служитель Иисуса Христа, питаемый словами веры и добрым учением, которому ты последовал.
7Негодных же и бабьих басен отвращайся, а упражняй себя в благочестии,
8ибо телесное упражнение мало полезно, а благочестие на все полезно, имея обетование жизни настоящей и будущей.
9Слово сие верно и всякого принятия достойно.
10Ибо мы для того и трудимся и поношения терпим, что уповаем на Бога живаго, Который есть Спаситель всех человеков, а наипаче верных.
11Проповедуй сие и учи.
12Никто да не пренебрегает юностью твоею; но будь образцом для верных в слове, в житии, в любви, в духе, в вере, в чистоте.
13Доколе не приду, занимайся чтением, наставлением, учением.
14Не неради о пребывающем в тебе даровании, которое дано тебе по пророчеству с возложением рук священства.
15О сем заботься, в сем пребывай, дабы успех твой для всех был очевиден.
16Вникай в себя и в учение; занимайся сим постоянно: ибо, так поступая, и себя спасешь и слушающих тебя.
Kommentarii ~Leny ~
"Starshij" - nadziratel', tot, kto pomogayet drugim primerom i obucheniyem. Razve vse my ne starshiye v nekotorym obrazom? YAvl'ayems'a li v nashih domah, ili v nashih mestah zan'atosti ili v nashem soobschestve ili cerkv'ah, my vsemi primerami k komu - to i imeyem vliyaniye na kogo - to gde-nibud'. Na etom boleye zrelo, mozhet pon'at' eto i fakticheski zhelat' byt' influencer s vovlechennoj cel''u. YA uslyshal mnogo l'udej, kotoryye pon'ali, chto drugiye nabl'udayut, chto ih zhizni govor'at, "ya ne hochu ih smotreniye i posle posle men'a." Eto pon'atno ne obladat' "issledovaniyem", kotoroye mozhet pribyt' ot togo, chtoby byt' primerom, no kogda kazhdyj ponimayet, chto eto - sposob, kotorym Bog sozdal nas, i on razmestil nas strategicheski v mesta vliyaniya, chto my mozhem vnesti YEgo izobrazheniye v drugih, my togda voznikayem kak "vzroslyye" i voz'mite zadachu ot radosti, iz-za vovlechennoj celi. Eto - to, chto sdelal etot "starshij", on zhelayet togo, kakoj Bog zhelayet i predstavl'ayet yego zhizn', chtoby byt' otvetstvennym st'uardom po oblast'am God’s urozhaya. Zamet'te, chto eto govorit, zhelayet li kto - to etogo polozheniya. V literature slovo "on" ili "chelovek", ispol'zuyets'a, chtoby soslat's'a na vse chelovechestvo. YA dejstvitel'no iskal eto slovo na greke, i eto oznachayet, byl "to, kto by ni". Pomnite, chto zhenschina priyehala ot cheloveka, i oni dva byli i teper' poskol'ku otdelennyye suschestva - odna plot'. Kakaya udivitel'naya tajna, eti dva byli i s drugoj storony stali tem. Tak ili inache, davajte smotret' na prohod, poskol'ku eto obraschayets'a k zhizn'am vseh hristian vo vseh polozheniyah i obstoyatel'stvah. (domoj, rabota, soobschestvo, cerkov'). Pochemu eto imet' znacheniye voobsche kakoj drugoj, chtoby dumat' o nas? Dumajte, "iz horoshej reputacii" v soobschestve. Pochemu eto imelo by znacheniye voobsche? Kto zabotits'a, kakiye l'udi dumayut obo mne, moyej sem'e, ili nezavisimo ot togo, chto eto - my reshayet sdelat', pravil'no? Ne spravedlivoye razmyshleniye, vozmozhno pr'amo po standartam vsemirnogo nezavisimogo duha, no eto ne to, kak Bog dumayet. On sdelal nas, chtoby byt' skopirovannym, tak zhe, kak, kogda on sdelal nas, on skopiroval Seb'a. Eto bylo model''u, kotoruyu on zhelal uvekovechit' cherez Vas i men'a. Kogda my stanovims'a lichnymi, my sdelali by eto dl'a nashih detej, no ne dl'a mira? Mir - deti Boga, i on zabotits'a, chto oni dumayut o l'ud'ah, kotoryye yavl'ayuts'a YEgo Telom, YEgo cerkov''u. Reputaciya ochen' vazhna. CHto my delayem, kuda my idem, s kem my visim regul'arno, chto my slushayem i t.d, yavl'ayuts'a vse ochen' vazhnymi, Oni govor'at, kto nam *1 i takzhe kto - my. My mozhem skazat', chto Iisus - Bog - Alliluj'a, no yesli my ne dokazyvayem eto tem, kak my zhivem, naskol'ko mir zainteresovan, chto my lezhim, i oni ne hot'at pohodit' na nas voobsche. Oni nenavid'at licemerov. Slovo "d''akon" oznachayet "sluzhaschego". Sluzhaschiye nesut samyj harakter Hrista, kotoryj byl Bogom, vse zhe pribyl, chtoby dat' vsemu etomu stanovleniye sluzhaschim radi spaseniya drugih. Pochemu my sluzhili by v dome Boga? V cerkovnom sredstve? Poskol'ku my l'ubim Boga, i my l'ubim, chtoby YEgo l'udi dostatochno dazhe bespokoilis' ob ih fizicheskom, privod'a k vstreche ih duhovnyh potrebnostej. My - uchastniki v YEgo bukval'noj sem'e i zhelayem pokazyvat' eto, dazhe razdel'aya v prakticheskih ob'azannost'ah.
Oni - oba nazvaniya liderstva v Tele Hrista. Bog hochet, chtoby YEgo l'udi zhelali, chtoby YEgo sv'atost' dostatochno zhelala byt' dokazannoj i dan nazvaniya, kotoryye oni podderzhivayut otvetstvenno. Pochemu l'uboj hotet' nazvaniye like eto? Proslavl'at' Boga bol'she, dokazyvat' i pokazyvat' YEgo celostnost'. Siyat' dal'she YEgo l'ubov' i svet. Nazvaniya pomeschayut nas v polozheniya, chtoby videt' vazhnost' razvitiya i podderzhaniya hristianskogo haraktera narochno. Prezhde, chem Vy byli roditelem, Vy dumali i dejstvovali odin put', posle nadevayuschij nazvaniye "otec" ili "mat'", Vy dejstvovali i dumali po-drugomu, Vy persued otvetstvennost' narochno. Bog tak zhelaniya l'udi, kotoryye podnimuts'a narochno, kto budet dokazan narochno, kto budet zamechen drugimi narochno, kotoryye demonstriruyuts'a, chtoby proslavit' YEgo, kto otvetit na Nego i skopiruyet YEgo i pozvolit drugim kopirovat' YEgo takzhe.

Today Our Daily Bread 1 Timothy 4

Monday, June 20, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread Proverbs 15

Proverbs 15:1 – 33
1 A gentle answer turns away wrath, but harsh words stir up anger.
2 The wise person makes learning a joy; fools spout only foolishness.
3 The LORD is watching everywhere, keeping his eye on both the evil and the good.
4 Gentle words bring life and health; a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit.
5 Only a fool despises a parent's discipline; whoever learns from correction is wise.
6 There is treasure in the house of the godly, but the earnings of the wicked bring trouble.
7 Only the wise can give good advice; fools cannot do so.
8 The LORD hates the sacrifice of the wicked, but he delights in the prayers of the upright.
9 The LORD despises the way of the wicked, but he loves those who pursue godliness.
10 Whoever abandons the right path will be severely punished; whoever hates correction will die.
11 Even the depths of Death and Destruction are known by the LORD.
How much more does he know the human heart!
12 Mockers don't love those who rebuke them, so they stay away from the wise.
13 A glad heart makes a happy face; a broken heart crushes the spirit.
14 A wise person is hungry for truth, while the fool feeds on trash.
15 For the poor, every day brings trouble; for the happy heart, life is a continual feast.
16 It is better to have little with fear for the LORD than to have great treasure with turmoil.
17 A bowl of soup with someone you love is better than steak with someone you hate.
18 A hothead starts fights; a cool-tempered person tries to stop them.
19 A lazy person has trouble all through life; the path of the upright is easy!
20 Sensible children bring joy to their father; foolish children despise their mother.
21 Foolishness brings joy to those who have no sense; a sensible person stays on the right path.
22 Plans go wrong for lack of advice; many counselors bring success.
23 Everyone enjoys a fitting reply; it is wonderful to say the right thing at the right time!
24 The path of the wise leads to life above; they leave the grave behind.
25 The LORD destroys the house of the proud, but he protects the property of widows.
26 The LORD despises the thoughts of the wicked, but he delights in pure words.
27 Dishonest money brings grief to the whole family, but those who hate bribes will live.
28 The godly think before speaking; the wicked spout evil words.
29 The LORD is far from the wicked, but he hears the prayers of the righteous.
30 A cheerful look brings joy to the heart; good news makes for good health.
31 If you listen to constructive criticism, you will be at home among the wise.
32 If you reject criticism, you only harm yourself; but if you listen to correction,
you grow in understanding.
33 Fear of the LORD teaches a person to be wise; humility precedes honor.
~Lena's Comments~
The Words in Proverbs speak so clearly, I don't feel I need to "explain or commentate"

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread 1 Tim 4

1 Timothy 4: 1 - 16
1 Now the Holy Spirit tells us clearly that in the last times some will turn away from what we believe; they will follow lying spirits and teachings that come from demons. 2 These teachers are hypocrites and liars. They pretend to be religious, but their consciences are dead. 3 They will say it is wrong to be married and wrong to eat certain foods. But God created those foods to be eaten with thanksgiving by people who know and believe the truth. 4 Since everything God created is good, we should not reject any of it. We may receive it gladly, with thankful hearts. 5 For we know it is made holy by the word of God and prayer.
6 If you explain this to the brothers and sisters, you will be doing your duty as a worthy servant of Christ Jesus, one who is fed by the message of faith and the true teaching you have followed. 7 Do not waste time arguing over godless ideas and old wives' tales. Spend your time and energy in training yourself for spiritual fitness. 8 Physical exercise has some value, but spiritual exercise is much more important, for it promises a reward in both this life and the next. 9 This is true, and everyone should accept it. 10 We work hard and suffer much in order that people will believe the truth, for our hope is in the living God, who is the Savior of all people, and particularly of those who believe. 11 Teach these things and insist that everyone learn them. 12 Don't let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you teach, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity. 13 Until I get there, focus on reading the Scriptures to the church, encouraging the believers, and teaching them. 14 Do not neglect the spiritual gift you received through the prophecies spoken to you when the elders of the church laid their hands on you. 15 Give your complete attention to these matters. Throw yourself into your tasks so that everyone will see your progress. 16 Keep a close watch on yourself and on your teaching. Stay true to what is right, and God will save you and those who hear you.
~ Lena's Comments~
The explanation is the Word of God is true, it is a person, alive inside of people. It is not laws written out on white paper, it is life to live for God, others and self. It is the spirit and nature of our Lord, whom we love and serve. It is His essence and a picture of His likeness with instruction in wisdom in how to be like Him. Its purpose is peace, It’s purpose is life, its purpose is salvation for all. Its motive is love, such a great and grand love, that he- the Living Word, gave up what he was, what he "could be", for one person, me, and anyother persons who would come also. IT IS A WASTE of TIME to debate the word as though it is a thing to be argued, It/He is a person, He is the maker of all. There is no dispute to this, none. He’s the ONLY ONE, and He chose us, chose to love us, and by love even serves us. He’s God and He serves us! This is why those who understand labor and are willing to go through the laboring process to bring forth Christ in others. It is so worth giving one’s life for. Youth is not measured in the spirit like it is in the natural. One can be 1 yr. old mature in the spirit and be 50 in the natural. People have a hard time with esteeming those who are younger than they are in natural age, yet wiser in spiritual maturity. The writer here says, don’t stumble over this, see it is a spiritual sense, rather than a natural one. How does one not neglect prophetic words, etc? By attending to them, giving themselves over to prayer about them, dreaming and agreeing with God on them (if faith has arisen over their words). It’s just like when we first hear a word in God’s word to us and we’ve never heard it before and it doesn’t seem to be so, at least for us now, but as we receive it and begin to believe it and ask God to make it a part of us, we find ourselves becoming that word. Such as kindness, we may have been very unkind and have practiced that our whole lives regularly. Well, we hear in the word that God’s character is kindness and we receive that word, then we embrace it and ask God to help us to become it, we begin to practice it and it becomes us, we have changed into the word of God and it has changed us into its image and likeness. That is the same things with prophecy, in fact the word prophecy, means preaching. So someone preached to us that we’d win souls. We’ve got to receive that and believe that enough to bring that to God and ask Him how we may need to adjust and change in order for that to become us. If we seek Him, He will show us howto become His character of a winner, of a lover and as we apply it, we will succeed in becoming the word that was given us about winning souls. The word always requires change to fit into its mold. The word of God is NOT magic and it is not God’s fault if a prophecy does not come to pass. Did we believe it? Receive it? Seek God on it? Become willing to be changed into its mold? Willingness for change that we do not and cannot do on our own, but that can only happen by God’s grace is what needs to happen, is what we all need to get to. We feel like if God wants to change us He doesn’t love us, He loves us enough to change us. We’ll die in sin if we don’t change, we’ll die prematurely if we don’t change, we will lose souls if we don’t change, We’ll walk in the curse if we don’t change. We’ll kill other’s faith if we don’t change. Change is good, but more than that, change is God!

Saturday, June 18, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread Psalm 133

Psalms 133: 1 - 3
1 A song for the ascent to Jerusalem. A psalm of David. How wonderful it is, how pleasant,
when brothers live together in harmony! 2 For harmony is as precious as the fragrant anointing
oil that was poured over Aaron's head, that ran down his beard and onto the border of his robe.
3 Harmony is as refreshing as the dew from Mount Hermon that falls on the mountains of Zion. And the LORD has pronounced his blessing, even life forevermore.
~Lena's Comments~
Is anointing worth unity? Is peace and harmony worth getting into agreement and resisting discontentment with others? Is the blessing pronounced by God Himself worth brethren living together and striving only to love and walk in the image of the Father towards one another, diving into covenant activity and thought? Is it? If one has truly ever really tasted of any of the above- the peace of God, harmony, peace, the love of the Father, anointing, agreement, blessing of God, etc, They know it is worth enough to lay down one’s life and own self-centered desires for. It is, He is and he did, for us! It’s all about eternity and how we walk that walk and with whom.

Friday, June 17, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread Psalm 16

Psalm 16 (New Life Version)
The Lord - Our Safe Place In Life And Covering In Death
1 Keep me, O God, for I am safe in You.
2 I said to the Lord, 'You are my Lord. All the good things I have come from You.'
3 As for those in the land who belong to You, they are the great ones in whom is all my joy.
4 Those who have traded for another god bring many troubles on themselves. I will not take part in their altar gifts of blood. And I will not take their names upon my lips.
5 The Lord is all that I am to receive, and my cup. My future is in Your hands.
6 The land given to me is good. Yes, my share is beautiful to me.
7 I will give honor and thanks to the Lord, Who has told me what to do. Yes, even at night my mind teaches me.
8 I have placed the Lord always in front of me. Because He is at my right hand, I will not be moved.
9 And so my heart is glad. My soul is full of joy. My body also will rest without fear.
10 For You will not give me over to the grave. And You will not allow Your Holy One to return to dust.
11You will show me the way of life. Being with You is to be full of joy. In Your right hand there is happiness forever.
~Lena's Comments~
If I’m not in Christ, or not in God, where am I? I’m lost, I’m floundering, I’m on my own, or serving others. When I’m kept ‘in Christ" I’m kept by God and for God. I’m safe. I’m thankful, grateful. I’m appreciative of being brought out of darkness into the family of God, I desire and yearn for the fellowship of those who have been in His family longer than I, and I rejoice when there are new members! I remember when I was 16, newly come to the Lord. I’d go to youth events and concerts. I had such a love for God and His people. I was so appreciative of where he had brought me from and how He had changed by Destiny, my future. After concerts there would be altar calls, and the people in the room, would clap and sing and whistle and rejoice whenever a person (then it was always a lot of persons) would make a move towards receiving Christ and repenting towards a new life. The speaker would tell the persons with newfound faith that the angels have a party every time someone comes to know Christ and accepts full heartedly what He dies for. I remember feeling the joy inside of me over someone else experiencing what I’ve been given so freely, and I was in the company of many others who also rejoiced this way. It was awesome, the greatest joy ever. I still feel the elation over someone choosing the one who’s chosen them from the very beginning. They’ve traded for themselves darkness for light, they’ve decided to stop the cycle of sin, they’ve chosen to serve the One true and living God, they’ve set themselves up for eternal success. Vs. 6 in other translations, says "the lines have fallen for me in pleasant places." Everything in my life was line-less, no directions, no map, no rules, and God has been gracious to me to bring me into the framework of His spirit. He sets me on a pathway where I can see where I’m going if I’m willing to trust and follow after Him. His rules help me learn of His ways and no that there are other ways that lead me to death. The lines outline my habitation, so now I have a place to live with Him, where before I was "homeless." They also surround and protect me and keep my destination to hell cancelled. His lines drawn around me make me invisible to hell’s call. I am contained by His spirit, I’m am kept unto Him, for safety, for health, for blessing. Amen

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread 1 John 3

1 John 3: 1 - 24
1 See how very much our heavenly Father loves us, for he allows us to be called his children, and we really are! But the people who belong to this world don't know God, so they don't understand that we are his children. 2 Yes, dear friends, we are already God's children, and we can't even imagine what we will be like when Christ returns. But we do know that when he comes we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is. 3 And all who believe this will keep themselves pure, just as Christ is pure. 4 Those who sin are opposed to the law of God, for all sin opposes the law of God. 5 And you know that Jesus came to take away our sins, for there is no sin in him. 6 So if we continue to live in him, we won't sin either. But those who keep on sinning have never known him or understood who he is. 7 Dear children, don't let anyone deceive you about this: When people do what is right, it is because they are righteous, even as Christ is righteous. 8 But when people keep on sinning, it shows they belong to the Devil, who has been sinning since the beginning. But the Son of God came to destroy these works of the Devil. 9 Those who have been born into God's family do not sin, because God's life is in them. So they can't keep on sinning, because they have been born of God. 10 So now we can tell who are children of God and who are children of the Devil. Anyone who does not obey God's commands and does not love other Christians F8 does not belong to God. 11 This is the message we have heard from the beginning: We should love one another. 12 We must not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and killed his brother. And why did he kill him? Because Cain had been doing what was evil, and his brother had been doing what was right. 13 So don't be surprised, dear brothers and sisters, F9 if the world hates you14 If we love our Christian brothers and sisters, it proves that we have passed from death to eternal life. But a person who has no love is still dead. 15 Anyone who hates another Christian F10 is really a murderer at heart. And you know that murderers don't have eternal life within them. 16 We know what real love is because Christ gave up his life for us. And so we also ought to give up our lives for our Christian brothers and sisters. 17 But if anyone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need and refuses to help – how can God's love be in that person? 18 Dear children, let us stop just saying we love each other; let us really show it by our actions. 19 It is by our actions that we know we are living in the truth, so we will be confident when we stand before the Lord, 20 even if our hearts condemn us. For God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. 21 Dear friends, if our conscience is clear, we can come to God with bold confidence. 22 And we will receive whatever we request because we obey him and do the things that please him. 23 And this is his commandment: We must believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as he commanded us. 24 Those who obey God's commandments live in fellowship with him, and he with them. And we know he lives in us because the Holy Spirit lives in us.
~ Lena’s Comments~
No matter what our families look like to us here on earth, whether our families are whole or torn apart, whether they are a pretty picture or an abusive nasty picture, we can be assured that God is our Father. This is why he refers to us as children, because of who He is towards us and then who we are towards Him, or rather to show us how he sees us. Laying all perversions aside, we can trust in Him as a Father and believe in His great love. I think it is magnificent how He continually sets us up to taste of His love for us, no matter what we choose or how we act or where we’ve been or come from. He loves us more than any earthly relationship could ever display. When we get this, and this is something we must get to know in order to be led by His spirit and be His praise and make Him known. In order to properly grow and go on to perfection we must get to know Him and trust Him and love Him this way. This revelation will lead us far where our faith is concerned. It will lead us to become as he is, which is the goal of all creation, that is us who are made in His image and likeness, that they would display His image and likness.Starting with verse 3, there seems to be must to dispute in the carnal mind. We’ve been told our whole lives – by the world, who taught us. When the world teaches us, why do we swallow it and keep a hold of it? As Christians we’ve got to take the words of the world that are incorrect in comparison with the Word of God and silence them inside of our minds by knowing more and more of the truth. Vs 3 says they (who are children of God) keep themselves pure. Many Christians ask God to purify them, and He did, which is why we are pure. This is saying I keep myself pure. How do I do that? By my choices. By the desires in me that lead me to make these choices. This is why I said above, if we know Him as He is, if He is truly revealed to us as He is, the choice is quite simple. I choose to keep myself pure. What does that mean? It means I value my relationship with my Father high enough to not let things steal from it. I value the word of God high enough that I refuse to listen to lies against it. I value God’s family enough that I play an active part in it and consider myself in relationship to and with His people as I would my relationship with God my Father. When we first hear words from the Word of God, and they are new and different to us. They are different than the words we’ve heard all of our lives in the world, we consider the words of God as laws to us. Most of human nature does not like law, unless we are the ones setting up the laws, then we love it. So, God sets up the law and my flesh nature does not like it, but my "Being changed into God’s image" nature, the new nature I’ve put on when accepting Christ, says- obey, Just do it, listen and practice what you hear. If I truly know and trust and love God and the messengers he’s brought my way (people who are also in His family), I will at least move myself by my choices to obey. If I do not, I now am acting as the world acts and am a participator of their kind, living in my own right, participating in rebellion against God, which is where I was before I "got saved". This is called sin. BUT right here it clearly says that God made provision for my sin, not once, but over and over again, if I am willing to come to realization and come towards change, He will forgive me and bring me to purity again. That’s the love of God. This was one lesson learned that has brought me towards perfection. If I continually sin in this manner, especially over the same instance, knowing full well what I’m doing and allowing rebellion to rule me rather than the word of God, do I truly know Him? I must need to draw in closer and personalize my relationship with Him further, because if I know His and His nature, I would not be able to do that.
There is a statement here in vs 10 that is hard for some. If we do not love those who are also called Children of God, we do not love God. "But God, people are hard to love, especially Christians, they judge us, tell us what to do, and how to live, hurt us, are hypocritical, etc. I love God, but I cannot stand His church." This is not true at all. Think of how God loves us, we were/are dirty rotten at times and definitely before we knew Him, we judge (the church and other Christians) and He still leads us towards Him and shows His love so faithfully to us. Are we exclusive? No, not at all. To say we cannot stand the church, is to say we cannot stand His own Body, which is who He is, that’s BIG. The greatest commands Jesus emphasized have to do with loving God, but in loving God, we also love who’s are His and belong to Him, yes the mother-in laws too. :-) . I was mild when I expressed what people say about the Lord’s Body. The word so often used (by our enemy- who plots us against God’s nature) is hatred for the church. When we hate His Body, we of course separate ourselves from His Body (this is truth, don’t allow your mind to minimize this) and in doing that we separate ourselves from Him. We cannot truly serve God and not be an active part of of His Body, the church. Murder is removal of by force, a cutting off of life. This is what hatred does, cuts us off from life and it’s source. If we have hatred of the church and separate ourselves from it’s people, its activities, then we kill off our faith, we cannot have active living faith apart from all God is. It is impossible. People say they can serve God at home, them and the Lord- NOT true. It is a lie from the nature of God’s enemy, who desires to kill off our faith walk and stop any progress we make on our spiritual journey. YES, love hurts, haven’t you ever hurt someone you love? You do when you separate from them. Relationship is in for the long run, it is based on covenant, not performance. If I don’t perform as you deem, you still love me, you help me, you communicate with me, you’re willing to give your life for me, and I for you. We behave this way because we know Him and this is how He is and are willing to demonstrate who He is to one another. It says here in vs 14, that if we do this we are alive, if we don’t we are walking in death. It seems backwards (and is to our carnal natured minds), but living id giving up our own lives for others). That is summed up by stating – "It’s not about me". If it’s always all about me, I’m living in death, death is upon me, rather than life growing in me. When we are willing. In vs 19 it actually says we will stand before the Lord for how we deal or refuse to deal with the church. We have got to choose to be participators in a regular relationship with the church. This does mean regular fellowship. There are well meaning Christians that will tell us we don’t need this, maybe you don’t, but remember it is not about you only. It is not only about how much you are fed, or need to be fed or whatever. It is about keeping up a relationship with Christ’s Body. No I don’t HAVE to be at the church every time "the doors are opened", but the more I do, the better the relationship and the more opportunity for growth in that relationship I’ll have and contribute. When I pick and choose and rationalize, I’m showing my carnal nature, my rebellion and resistance to my new nature in Christ. It’s not about Christ, it’s about me. OK, so right now, you might feel angry reading this (I apologize for any offense, but I love you and want you to grow in truth) just as I pray you love me and desire me to grow in truth. So we hear truth and we feel – condemned. Why? Simply because we’ve been off a bit. When we get back on we’ll not feel that. It is a gage to show us it is time for an adjustment. Many times what we call condemnation is actually conviction of God’s spirit to lead us towards change. If we’ve been led towards change over and over again and have resisted it, then we feel condemned, so change and that will change. Why are our prayers answered (or not)? When we live in obedience we live in the blessings of even answered prayers. Disobedience to God and the wisdom of His words, is a #1 hindrance to answered prayers.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread 2 Timothy 2

2 Timothy 2: 1 - 26
1 Timothy, my dear son, be strong with the special favor God gives you in Christ Jesus. 2 You have heard me teach many things that have been confirmed by many reliable witnesses. Teach these great truths to trustworthy people who are able to pass them on to others. 3 Endure suffering along with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. 4 And as Christ's soldier, do not let yourself become tied up in the affairs of this life, for then you cannot satisfy the one who has enlisted you in his army. 5 Follow the Lord's rules for doing his work, just as an athlete either follows the rules or is disqualified and wins no prize. 6 Hardworking farmers are the first to enjoy the fruit of their labor. 7 Think about what I am saying. The Lord will give you understanding in all these things..
8 Never forget that Jesus Christ was a man born into King David's family and that he was raised from the dead. This is the Good News I preach. 9 And because I preach this Good News, I am suffering and have been chained like a criminal. But the word of God cannot be chained. 10 I am willing to endure anything if it will bring salvation and eternal glory in Christ Jesus to those God has chosen. 11 This is a true saying: If we die with him, we will also live with him. 12 If we endure hardship, we will reign with him. If we deny him, he will deny us. 13 If we are unfaithful, he remains faithful, for he cannot deny himself.
14 Remind everyone of these things, and command them in God's name to stop fighting over words. Such arguments are useless, and they can ruin those who hear them. 15 Work hard so God can approve you. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth. 16 Avoid godless, foolish discussions that lead to more and more ungodliness. 17 This kind of talk spreads like cancer. Hymenaeus and Philetus are examples of this. 18 They have left the path of truth, preaching the lie that the resurrection of the dead has already occurred; and they have undermined the faith of some.
19 But God's truth stands firm like a foundation stone with this inscription: "The Lord knows those who are his," F2 and "Those who claim they belong to the Lord must turn away from all wickedness." F3 20 In a wealthy home some utensils are made of gold and silver, and some are made of wood and clay. The expensive utensils are used for special occasions, and the cheap ones are for everyday use. 21 If you keep yourself pure, you will be a utensil God can use for his purpose. Your life will be clean, and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work.
22 Run from anything that stimulates youthful lust. Follow anything that makes you want to do right. Pursue faith and love and peace, and enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts. 23 Again I say, don't get involved in foolish, ignorant arguments that only start fights. 24 The Lord's servants must not quarrel but must be kind to everyone. They must be able to teach effectively and be patient with difficult people. 25 They should gently teach those who oppose the truth. Perhaps God will change those people's hearts, and they will believe the truth. 26 Then they will come to their senses and escape from the Devil's trap. For they have been held captive by him to do whatever he wants.
~Lena’s Comments~
We work hard at getting whatever it is we really want? Isn’t the word, its truths and its rewards worth working hard at? What about gaining salvation for others, It is worth the work. Is it worth suffering in this life for? Yes it is, because the reward is not of this world, it is of he eternal world, where we will spend our lives forever, where no suffering will be at all. Sometimes thinking of suffering as being in labor till promises are birthed is a good way to think of things. Labor is worth the birth of a precious child. So is suffering for Christ here worth what will be brought forth either later here and /or later there. Looking at seeds and how they are planted, die, break forth through the crust and the ground and live in a completely different form, which emanates a beauty beyond comprehension, sums it all up in picture form. Again arguments do not promote the nature of God, no matter what they are about and what point they are defending. God’s nature is agreement and peace. Truth does not have to have an edge when presented and does not need to be up for a debate either. Truth is truth, as long as it is the pure (untempered by my own opinions) word of God. If we know Him in His character, we will also know that He is the God of peace and does not have to be proven worthy by us, as in debated over. Purity seems t9o be related to peace in truth, security in God. If we are insecure we have to prove ourselves. Christ was threatened and was subjected to those who hated Him and were cursing Him, yet He had nothing to debate or prove. He was proof of God, period.
The fellowship of other believers is so essential to our healthy Christian thinking, to our healthy Christian lives. We’ve got to resist any pull to attend to other things first and let our opportunities of fellowship with other believers lapse. It is such an easy tendency to let that go first, to count it as the least of the important things we should be doing in life, yet it is very high on God’s list of priority for growth. If we are truly caretakers of our faith, we should deliberately resist anything that would call us away from what will build our faith and make it stronger, and what will build in us more opportunity for strong Godly character, which is the fellowship of other stronger than us believers.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread 1 Tim 1

1 Timothy 1: 1 - 20
1 This letter is from Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus, appointed by the command of God our Savior and by Christ Jesus our hope. 2 It is written to Timothy, my true child in the faith.
May God our Father and Christ Jesus our Lord give you grace, mercy, and peace. 3 When I left for Macedonia, I urged you to stay there in Ephesus and stop those who are teaching wrong doctrine. 4 Don't let people waste time in endless speculation over myths and spiritual pedigrees. F1 For these things only cause arguments; they don't help people live a life of faith in God. F2.
5 The purpose of my instruction is that all the Christians there would be filled with love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience, and sincere faith. 6 But some teachers have missed this whole point. They have turned away from these things and spend their time arguing and talking foolishness. 7 They want to be known as teachers of the law of Moses, but they don't know what they are talking about, even though they seem so confident. 8 We know these laws are good when they are used as God intended. 9 But they were not made for people who do what is right. They are for people who are disobedient and rebellious, who are ungodly and sinful, who consider nothing sacred and defile what is holy, who murder their father or mother or other people. 10 These laws are for people who are sexually immoral, for homosexuals and slave traders, for liars and oath breakers, and for those who do anything else that contradicts the right teaching 11 that comes from the glorious Good News entrusted to me by our blessed God.
12 How thankful I am to Christ Jesus our Lord for considering me trustworthy and appointing me to serve him, 13 even though I used to scoff at the name of Christ. I hunted down his people, harming them in every way I could. But God had mercy on me because I did it in ignorance and unbelief. 14 Oh, how kind and gracious the Lord was! He filled me completely with faith and the love of Christ Jesus. 15 This is a true saying, and everyone should believe it: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners – and I was the worst of them all. 16 But that is why God had mercy on me, so that Christ Jesus could use me as a prime example of his great patience with even the worst sinners. Then others will realize that they, too, can believe in him and receive eternal life. 17 Glory and honor to God forever and ever. He is the eternal King, the unseen one who never dies; he alone is God. Amen.
18 Timothy, my son, here are my instructions for you, based on the prophetic words spoken about you earlier. May they give you the confidence to fight well in the Lord's battles. 19 Cling tightly to your faith in Christ, and always keep your conscience clear. For some people have deliberately violated their consciences; as a result, their faith has been shipwrecked. 20 Hymenaeus and Alexander are two examples of this. I turned them over to Satan so they would learn not to blaspheme God.
~ Lena’s Comments~
Arguments do not promote the nature of God. Also focusing on every other thought and doctrine is not conducive to centering in on the point of the truth and promoting Christ’s work in a person’s life. Love looks towards what promotes peace inside of a person. Love makes peace inside of other people. Ever feel yourself emanate strife, discontent, anger, etc? Why not do that with Peace, It IS contagious So the "holier" we perceive ourselves to be, the less we should see ourselves executing the law on ourselves and on others. This is so opposite religious piousness. Thankfulness for even the places God has put us on earth and the people He has set in our pathways and those who He entrusts us to disciple, is such a humble way of thought. That we would count ourselves privileged to serve others and in so doing serve Him more. In this we realize who we were, where we were destined to be and how He snatched us from death and delivered us into life. If we have no compassion on those who sin, how can we ever bring the message of salvation their way? If we separate ourselves from them, we’ll be too far away for them to see anything Godly in our lives. We’ve got to get closer to where God’s heartbeat is at. It is with winning hearts over to His love. Not making religious people who are militantly following the laws.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread Matthew 5

Matthew 5: 1 - 48
1 One day as the crowds were gathering, Jesus went up the mountainside with his disciples and sat down to teach them. 2 This is what he taught them:
3 "God blesses those who realize their need for him, F29 for the Kingdom of Heaven is given to them. 4 God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5 God blesses those who are gentle and lowly, for the whole earth will belong to them. 6 God blesses those who are hungry and thirsty for justice, for they will receive it in full. 7 God blesses those who are merciful, for they will be shown mercy. 8 God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God. 9 God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God. 10 God blesses those who are persecuted because they live for God, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. 11 "God blesses you when you are mocked and persecuted and lied about because you are my followers. 12 Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted, too.
13 "You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can you make it useful again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless. 14 You are the light of the world – like a city on a mountain, glowing in the night for all to see. 15 Don't hide your light under a basket! Instead, put it on a stand and let it shine for all. 16 In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.
17 "Don't misunderstand why I have come. I did not come to abolish the law of Moses or the writings of the prophets. No, I came to fulfill them. 18 I assure you, until heaven and earth disappear, even the smallest detail of God's law will remain until its purpose is achieved. 19 So if you break the smallest commandment and teach others to do the same, you will be the least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But anyone who obeys God's laws and teaches them will be great in the Kingdom of Heaven. 20 "But I warn you – unless you obey God better than the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees do, you can't enter the Kingdom of Heaven at all!
21 "You have heard that the law of Moses says, 'Do not murder. If you commit murder, you are subject to judgment.' F30 22 But I say, if you are angry with someone, F31 you are subject to judgment! If you call someone an idiot, F32 you are in danger of being brought before the high council. And if you curse someone, F33 you are in danger of the fires of hell. 23 "So if you are standing before the altar in the Temple, offering a sacrifice to God, and you suddenly remember that someone has something against you, 24 leave your sacrifice there beside the altar. Go and be reconciled to that person. Then come and offer your sacrifice to God. 25 Come to terms quickly with your enemy before it is too late and you are dragged into court, handed over to an officer, and thrown in jail. 26 I assure you that you won't be free again until you have paid the last penny.
27 "You have heard that the law of Moses says, 'Do not commit adultery.' F34 28 But I say, anyone who even looks at a woman with lust in his eye has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 So if your eye – even if it is your good eye F35 – causes you to lust, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30 And if your hand – even if it is your stronger hand F36 – causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 31 "You have heard that the law of Moses says, 'A man can divorce his wife by merely giving her a letter of divorce.' F37 32 But I say that a man who divorces his wife, unless she has been unfaithful, causes her to commit adultery. And anyone who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.
33 "Again, you have heard that the law of Moses says, 'Do not break your vows; you must carry out the vows you have made to the Lord.' F38 34 But I say, don't make any vows! If you say, 'By heaven!' it is a sacred vow because heaven is God's throne. 35 And if you say, 'By the earth!' it is a sacred vow because the earth is his footstool. And don't swear, 'By Jerusalem!' for Jerusalem is the city of the great King. 36 Don't even swear, 'By my head!' for you can't turn one hair white or black. 37 Just say a simple, 'Yes, I will,' or 'No, I won't.' Your word is enough. To strengthen your promise with a vow shows that something is wrong. F39
38 "You have heard that the law of Moses says, 'If an eye is injured, injure the eye of the person who did it. If a tooth gets knocked out, knock out the tooth of the person who did it.' F40 39 But I say, don't resist an evil person! If you are slapped on the right cheek, turn the other, too. 40 If you are ordered to court and your shirt is taken from you, give your coat, too. 41 If a soldier demands that you carry his gear for a mile, F41 carry it two miles. 42 Give to those who ask, and don't turn away from those who want to borrow.
43 "You have heard that the law of Moses says, 'Love your neighbor' F42 and hate your enemy. 44 But I say, love your enemies! F43 Pray for those who persecute you! 45 In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven. For he gives his sunlight to both the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and on the unjust, too. 46 If you love only those who love you, what good is that? Even corrupt tax collectors do that much. 47 If you are kind only to your friends, F44 how are you different from anyone else? Even pagans do that. 48 But you are to be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect.
~Lena’s Comments~
We just had an awesome message about going up to the mountain of the lord to be with Him and get to know Him, not just learn of Him and work for Him, but know Him. I find it cool that here it says he took His disciples up to the Mtn. With Him and there he showed them who He is. He wants us all to know who he is, not about who he is, but know 1st hand, who He is. Disciples will go there, sit down there (that means stop for a bit, Lena), and be taught. I think Of Mary at Jesus’ feet, being taught by Him, not of Him, but by Him. Martha stayed busy, busy and did not go there, so she could possibly be taught later on by Martha, who had been there. Martha could have taught her of Him, but it wasn’t by Him. "Of "Him is good, if it leads us to "By" Him. In looking at these "blessed’s" I see one knowing Him enough to be able to see into another realm that they are assured of as being more a reality than this one is. What or where is our reality at? Here or there? We’re blessed if it is of another place, if we live there, while we stay here. Visitors here, residents there. If we live for only what we see right now, why did Christ die? We have got to see what He and the Father see. Getting a greater view, a greater glimpse than just what appears to be here and now. This portion rocks our image of humility, when it says, let all men see your good deeds. The difference is these deeds spoken of here are really who the person is in Christ. It’s not the act they "put on", It is the real person being worked on in Christ, the person being raised up a new man or woman who’s life gives praise to God. Forgiveness is an exercise in Christianity, it is to be practiced, and the quicker the better. Notice the passage puts responsibility upon the person who offends. If this person takes responsibility, (really any person who wants to keep an ongoing and pure relationship with God will constantly and on purpose take this responsibility) is aware of others and how what they say or do effects others, to the extent of going after them, persuing them as they see an offense may have been taken. This person is a watcher, not a casual orator, just giving words, without being willing to take responsibility for their effects. This passage says, "go quickly and make it right with your ENEMY!" What light that shed’s on matters, huh? We always think in terms of balance, equals, recompense, payments. God does not think this way at all! Make peace with enemies? YES! Those who understand and are truly willing to take responsibility are those who see that the cost is great and are still willing to pay, That is the nature of love. It is at my expense, I pay the way, not because I’m made to, but because I desire your soul to be sold out to the One who loves you, who cares for you, who paid it all for you. If I extend my self (life) here where others refuse, I at least show you a glimpse of who He is that gave His life for you. This man who would not divorce his wife, does not do so because he decides to give His life over to one, who maybe is no longer lovely or loving, for the sake of displaying love to her. He chooses to stay, showing the character of Christ to his mate. It’s not about giving to get, or expecting to get. It’s about giving and loving. The world has taught us so faithfully that there is a way out of our misery, It’s called escape. But God asks us to do as he would- Never leave! Never forsake. No wonder we have a hard time believing that when God says this He means it! Not many in our world have shown it to be true in living example form. Living it is proof, saying it is NOT. It would be better to be silent with our tongues and to shout aloud with our lives, than to speak thousands of unfulfilled undone words. We’ve got to stop ourselves in mid thought and say to ourselves, will I do what I’m about to say? Then decide whether to speak or not.
The nature of Love is to give. When one is involved in discipling others, it will be time to show that love is also responsible to move from always receiving, always needing to always giving and ministering. Jesus fed His disciples and then showed and told them to go and feed others. This is the goal of our Christian life, to be fed, to feed and to be bread. Then to add timeframes to it; Not just be bread once, but be bread-daily. We’ve got to stop thinking and saying. But look how THEY act, look what THEY do to me, Look how THEY act! He does see that, He needs us to act on it. How does one act when someone else is being a "jerk" as we so blatantly will state in our daily vocabulary? Do we need justification? Have we been send to them to point that out? Do they need to be told who they are? Or who they can be? Or who loves them where they are? Is it about us, or about Him? That can be a daily, sometimes hourly question. How far does our kindness extend? To just the lovely? Perfection is seeing beyond what is to what can and will be. Why do we weigh pennies for pennies, when the people of the world are far more precious to Him than how they may be acting. Remember to see beyond the mask. He does, He did when He saw me.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Today Our Daily Bread Psalm 1

Psalm 1
1 Oh, the joys of thosewho do not follow the advice of the wicked,or stand around with sinners,or join in with scoffers.
2 But they delight in doing everything the LORD wants;day and night they think about his law.
3 They are like trees planted along the riverbank,bearing fruit each season without fail. Their leaves never wither,and in all they do, they prosper.
4 But this is not true of the wicked.They are like worthless chaff, scattered by the wind.
5 They will be condemned at the time of judgment.Sinners will have no place among the godly.
6 For the LORD watches over the path of the godly,but the path of the wicked leads to destruction
~Lena's Comments~
When I think of this I don’t think of only my fellowship with people exactly. I think of my participation with the angles who either bless or curse God’s ways. They are setting up atmosphere’s that bless or curse God’s ways. They are looking for those who would seize opportunities and either leave them or join them in their missions for earth. Remember angels are both for God’s kingdom and against it, depending on who they serve and live for. Same with us, what we participate in shows forth who we serve and live for. Everyday holds new opportunities for blessings or cursings. Choosing life and blessing establishes us as participators of His kingdom. It roots our faith walk in Him. It shows He is our source and supply. There is no way at all that being rooted in Him as our primary source, would not reproduce fruits that are from Him. There’s no way we would not be alive with prosperity. This is the place of Divine covering and sheltering. This is the place to set up camp, to stay, to live and dwell. I’d visited this place a lot, but it is so the time to make it my residence, call it my home, have Him as my source.
I just want to thank the Lord for all He has done to always bring me back to this place of choice, to always lead me back on this path that leads to my true place of residency, to show me I belong here, to take us there in times we cannot see the way. To give us desire to stay, to help us take ownership as homeowners do. Thank You Lord, for long endurance in leading, protecting, and covering. Thank You for so patiently waiting. Thank You for loving me and my friends (Your friends) the same way. Thank You for going Jesus and making this "place" for us to live even while we are here on earth. Thank You. Without You we’d be in hell already. Thank You for providing life, thank You for keeping me there, when the pull of earth tries to grab me and pull me away. Thank You for your great love. Thank You.