Like the Son of a King

I am living like a queen! With my robes wrapped around me, I have ordered food and drinks delivered to my bedchamber. (Full disclosure: it’s a bathrobe and I’m sick in bed. 😦 )

David has been kind enough to run to the store for drinks to soothe my raw throat. (Note to self: Salty helps; spicy hurts and hot or creamy drinks help; pop really hurts!) You know you are sick when you eat chicken noodle soup and don’t want the chicken or the noodles.

Regardless of how I feel, it doesn’t change “Whose” I am. I am a queen because my Father is the King of Kings! This sickness will pass. Today, the One healing me reminded me of my royal heritage.

Judges 8:18, “…They were like you. Each one looked like the son of a king.” Modern English Version

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Leaders Lead, People Freely Volunteer

The first thing I read today was this verse in my devotional.

Philippians 1:10, “Learn to sense what is vital,…and of real value.” AMPC

After another night of missed sleep, due to a sore throat, I was sure God was telling me to go back to bed! I prayed and read the two assigned chapters in Judges.

When I finished, God spoke to my heart, “What was vital in these chapters?”

I started reading them again and stopped on the second verse.

Judges 5:2, “When the leaders in Israel lead, when the people freely volunteer, bless the Lord.” Modern English Version

  • Either I am a leader, or I am not.
  • If I am a leader, I must lead.
  • If I am not a leader, I must do more than follow – I must volunteer.
  • I must freely do my part and be willing to serve.
  • This blesses the Lord.

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Not a Single Man Survived

I was up for 3 hours in the middle of the night trying to ease a sore throat. I gargled salt water, used a sinus rinse, put Vicks on my face, neck, chest, and feet, drank hot chocolate, heated up a sinus mask, and sprayed Chloraseptic on my throat – twice!

David woke up me saying. “There’s hot Malto Meal!”

“I’ll take it in here – with a cup of coffee.”

How did I get breakfast in bed? I think my bass voice may have had something to do with it! I kept texting David: 7Up…applesauce…Nachos Navidad.

The last item was a request for supper. (I had chicken noodle soup for lunch.) I’m starting the day weak, but I want to end it strong – watching Christmas movies!

I don’t want to be like King Jabin and Sisera. They lived in Harosheth Haggoyim.

Harosheth Haggoyim – lit. Smithy of the Nations, a fortress or calvary base of Sisera.

At the beginning of the chapter, they had 900 iron chariots. They were so confident that they called their fortress the “Smithy of the Nations!” But, by the middle of the chapter, their army was gone. All. Of. Them.

Judges 4:16, “Barak chased after the chariots and the army as far as Harosheth Haggoyim. The whole army of Sisera fell by the edge of the sword. Not a single man survived.” Modern English Version

A few verses later, Sisera was hiding under a rug and he fell asleep, 24:18. The lady of the tent killed him with a tent peg, 24:21. And King Jabin grew weaker and weaker until he was no more, 24:24.

I do not want to get weaker and weaker. I called my friends and family, (none of them recognized my voice), and told them I would miss the 2 Christmas parties this weekend. (Insert tears here.) 😦

I got a sub to play for me on Sunday. I’m going back to bed!

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Write These Words in a Book

Last January, we read the story of Samuel’s miraculous birth and life. He went to live in the temple as a very young child. Today I read one of the things he did while he was there.

Moses wrote the first 5 books of the Bible containing the oral history of generations. He wrote them down and the events of the wandering in the wilderness. I’m sure Joshua took over recording the events at some point as Moses aged. Joshua continued after Moses died, writing the book named after him.

Joshua 24:26, “Joshua wrote these words in the Book of the Law of God….” Modern English Version

Today, we started reading the book of Judges. Who wrote it?

“Jewish tradition attributes Samuel with the authorship of Judges.” Modern English Version Introduction to Judges

While growing up in the temple, Samuel learned to read and write. He also heard the oral history from the priests. He recorded the stories in the book of Judges and wrote about his own life.

A journal records history!

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Return Home with Great Wealth and Divide It

God rewards those who do their duty. Your duty may take you away from your family for long periods of time – like the fighting men of Reuben, Gad, and Manasseh. Your duty may require you to stay home in your small town – like their brothers.

Joshua 22:8, “Return home with great wealth, much livestock, silver, gold, copper, iron, and great quantities of clothing. Divide the spoil of your enemies among your brothers.” Modern English Version

We each have to serve in the area in which God has called us. It may not be dramatic as a missionary or evangelist. We may not ever receive applause as a traveling musician experiences. Fame and fortune may not be our rewards but you cannot put a dollar amount on peace, tranquility, contentment, and rest.

Whatever your duty is – do it with all your might, see Ecclesiastes 9:10 and Colossians 3:23.

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Clear It!

Today is cleaning day! I love my little house on cleaning day. I can clean it in 30 minutes because I clean the kitchen and bathrooms every day.

But, there are times I think my house is too small – when I stub my toe on some furniture or when the extended family comes for dinner. Today’s verses showed me 2 ways to enlarge my house.

Joshua 17:16-18, “The descendants of Joseph said, ‘The hill country is not enough for us, and all the Canaanites living in the plains have iron chariots,’… Joshua said, ‘You are a numerous people who have great strength. There will not be only one allotment for you. The hill country shall be yours. Although it is a forest you shall clear it and own it to its borders. You shall drive out the Canaanites, even though they have iron chariots and are strong.’ ” Modern English Version

“You can’t see the forest for the trees”

Joshua told the descendants of Joseph to clear the forest. When I need more “space” I look for pockets of clutter. Items tucked in corners on the floor take up visual space. (That Christmas wrap I can see could be in the closet, not behind the door!)

Another way is to drive out unwanted inhabitants – spiders and silverfish are the two I want to eliminate! (I am open to suggestions.)

And before you think, “I’m too old” or “I’ve lived here too long,” I want to share another item Joshua did when he was “old and well advanced in years.”

Joshua 19:50, “…He built up the city and lived in it.” Modern English Version

If Joshua can build up a city when he was pushing 100, I can drive out those bugs!

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When You Are Old…

When you are a child, adults ask, “What do you want to do when you grow up?” In school, you are to make a list of goals to reach before you are 30, 40, or 50. Then you make a “bucket list” of things you want to do before you die. What about when you are old?

Joshua 13:1, “Now Joshua was old and well advanced in years. The Lord said to him, ‘You are old and advanced in years, but very much of the land still remains to be possessed.’ ” Modern English Version

What did Joshua do when he was “old and well advanced in years?”

  1. He divided the rest of the land, Joshua 18, and 19.
  2. He chose cities of refuge, Joshua 20.
  3. He chose cities for the Levites, Joshua 21.
  4. He finished conquering the land, Joshua 21:43-45.
  5. He sent armies from the eastern tribes home, Joshua 22:1-6.
  6. He established government and charged the leaders, Joshua 23.
  7. He renewed the Covenant with the Lord, Joshua 24.
  8. He established regulations and laws, Joshua 24:25.
  9. He wrote them in the Book of the Law of God, Joshua 24:26.
  10. He took a large stone and set it up under the oak by the sanctuary of the Lord as a witness that the people heard the Laws of the Lord, Joshua 24:26.

You don’t stop working for the Lord when you get old. You complete the assignment He gave to you and He gives you the strength to do each task. The Lord never denied that Joshua was old. He stated it as a fact, but it did not keep Joshua from completing his assignment – conquering the land of Canaan. (Truth trumps fact.)

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Investment Strategy

In Genesis 12:3, God told Abraham He would bless those that blessed him and curse those that cursed him. Based on this verse, I want to invest in Israel. I have not found a way to do that.

Then, I was watching a Christmas movie and saw an ad for an organization that helps holocaust survivors. Daily, these Jews choose between buying food or wood for heat. Instead of investing in a company, I could invest in a ministry!

You might not agree with my investment strategy – until you look at how God treated the Gibeonites. Five kings came to attack them and they sent a message to Joshua.

Joshua 10:6, “The men of Gibeon sent this message to Joshua at the Gilgal settlement: ‘Do not abandon your slaves. Come up to us quickly. Save us! Help us! For all the Amorite kings living in the hill country have gathered against us.’ ” Modern English Version

Joshua 10 tells us everything God did for them:

  • He gave the enemy into Joshua’s hand, v. 8.
  • Not a single man could stand against them, v. 8.
  • God panicked them, v. 10.
  • The Lord hurled large hailstones down upon them, v. 11.
  • He stopped the sun for a full day, v. 13!

God did this for a battle defending the Gibeonites because they were the slaves of the children of Israel.

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Pray and Point

On Saturdays, I pray for missionaries. John and Jenny Maxwell have been on my prayer list for my entire life. They attended Elim Bible Institute with my parents and became missionaries in Africa. My dad joined the staff at Elim as the maintenance man and stayed there for several years.

Another couple, who are friends of my parents, are David and Joed Hill in Paraguay. They have a daughter my age who married and remained on the mission field serving with her parents.

These couples have spent the last 50 years serving in other countries. I’ve spent my adult life in this small town. I am not serving as a pastor of a church or traveling from town to town evangelizing. I just point people to Jesus.

* * * * * * *

When the children of Israel were in the battle with the inhabitants of Ai, Joshua was their leader. Did he lead the charge? No, he just pointed his sword.

Joshua 8:26, “Joshua did not draw back his hand with the stretched-out sword until he destroyed all the inhabitants of Ai.” Modern English Version

The cross-references for this verse are Exodus 17:11-13.

Exodus 17:11-13, “Now when Moses held up his hand, Israel prevailed, but when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed.

(12) But Moses’ hands became heavy. So they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat on it. And Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one on one side, and the other on the other side. And his hands were steady until the going down of the sun.

(13) So Joshua laid low Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.” Modern English Version

Joshua knew what happened when Moses let down his hand! He knew he had to hold his position. (Although, the enemy that got close to him were soon dispatched!)

Pray and point. That’s what I do. Sometimes, it’s harder to stay in one place holding your position but it is the only way to win the battle.

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What’s Written for Me Today?

The children of Israel wandered around the wilderness for 40 years. Why 40 years? Because God writes the day of each person’s death before their conception.

Psalms 139:16, “Your eyes saw me unformed, yet in Your book all my days were written, before any of them came into being.” Modern English Version

In God’s Book, He wrote that the days of that generation be lived out in Canaan. Their sin condemned them to wander in the wilderness for the remainder of their lives.

God still loved them. He still took care of them. He still blessed them with children. But, they raised their children living as nomads, instead of on the land God wanted to give them.

Joshua 5:6, “The children of Israel had traveled forty years in the wilderness until all the people, the men of fighting age who came out of Egypt, died, because they did not obey the Lord. The Lord had sworn not to let them see the land that He had sworn to their fathers to give to us, a land flowing with milk and honey.” Modern English Version

Dear Heavenly Father,

Don’t let me miss any of the good plans You have written for me today.

In the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ,

Amen

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