April 3, 2013

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“Like curiously wrought Oriental lamps, which do not reveal the beauty of their transparent emblems until lighted up within, so the types and allegories of Scripture, ‘the lantern to our path,’ need the inner light of the Holy Spirit of Jesus to reveal their significance…In the Song, with an Oriental profusion of imagery, numbers of lovely, sensible objects are aggregated not strictly congruous, but portraying jointly by their very diversity the thousands various and seemingly opposite beauties which meet together in Christ.” Critical and Explanatory commentary, Vol. I

The depth of the love of our King Jesus is portrayed in this book. He cares about every detail in our life described as ‘little foxes that spoil the vineyards’ in Song of Solomon 2:15.

“What is my greatest concern, the thing about which most of all I want Christ’s help? When he asks to hear my voice, what do I tell him?” Amplified Bible Notes

But true love is a mature love based on trust and it will be tested as we see in today’s verse.

Song of Solomon 5:6, “I opened for my beloved, but my beloved had turned away and withdrawn himself, and was gone! My soul went forth [to him] when he spoke, but it failed me [and now he was gone]! I sought him, but I could not find him; I called him, but he gave me no answer.”

“Weak faith receives immediate comfort (Luke 8:44, 47, 48); strong faith is tried with delay (Matthew 15:22, 23).” Critical and Explanatory Commentary, Vol. I

 

 

January 31, 2013

God is never early, never late; He answers in the nick of time and usually at the last minute. One of the hardest things to do is to wait on God when we are positive we know what the answer is or that time has run out.

1 Samuel 14:18, 19, “Saul said to Ahijah, Bring here the ark of God – for at that time the ark of God was with the children of Israel. While Saul talked to the priest, the tumult in the Philistine camp kept increasing. Then Saul said to the priest, Withdraw your hand.”

I wonder what instructions God would have given if Saul had waited one more minute? I’m sure He would not have deprived the army of food! He knows we need food for strength.

 

December 10, 2012

We have been blessed to not have a foreign army attack American soil since December 7, 1941. We did have a terrorist attack on September 11, 2001, but the death toll was minor compared to D Day.

We have a more insidious enemy. Our enemies are like the Gibeonites.

Joshua 9:4, “They worked cunningly, and went pretending to be ambassadors and took [provisions and] old sacks on their donkeys and wineskins, old, torn, and mended.”

“They acted with dexterous policy, seeking the means of self-preservation, not by force, which they were convinced, would be unavailing, but by artful diplomacy.” Critical and Explanatory Commentary, Vol. I

Let us learn from the story of the Gibeonites and ask God how to respond.

November 29, 2012

We are to examine our hearts and minds daily. Is there anything in them that will separate us from God?

Deuteronomy 10:16, “So circumcise the foreskin of your [minds and] hearts; be no longer stubborn and hardened.”

We are to cut off the things in our hearts and minds that make us stubborn or hardened: unforgiveness, pride, haughtiness, self-righteousness, arrogance, etc.

November 23, 2012

Every day I pray today’s verse over the deployed soldiers on my list. The list consists of friends, the spouses of friends, children of friends and the names of soldiers that acquaintances mention in conversation or on Facebook. I claim this verse for each one.

Numbers 31:49, “They told [him], Your servants have counted the warriors under our command, and not one man of us is missing.”

I am so grateful that God honors his word and I have prayed 19 soldiers safely through their deployments. One lady deployed three times! I also pray Psalms 91 over them.

I would be happy to add your soldier to my list. Leave their name and the date their deployment ends in a comment.

November 3, 2012 – Relevant

When you first fall in love, there is a fire that burns in you. That fire will go out if you do not keep feeding it. It is the same way in our walk with God. The fire should burn constantly.

Leviticus 6:13, “The fire shall be burning continually upon the altar; it shall not go out.”

“The daily service consisted of two lambs, one offered in the morning at sunrise, the other in the evening, when the day began to decline. Both of them were consumed on the altar by means of a slow fire, before which the pieces of the sacrifice were so placed that they fed it all night…The fire that consumed these sacrifices had been kindled from heaven at the consecration of the tabernacle, and to keep it from being extinguished and the sacrifices from being  burned with common fire, strict injunctions are here given respecting not only the removal of the ashes, but the approaching near to the fire-place in garments that are not officially “holy”. Critical and Explanatory Commentary, Vol. I

When I read today’s verse, I thought, “I want to keep my fire burning.” I realized there was nothing I could do. The only way was for the fire to be kindled from heaven.

“Dear Lord, Please send your fire!”

October 11, 2012 – Relevant

I have been without a printer for three weeks. I got sick right after it broke and that accounted for the first two weeks. The third week was spent trying to fix it myself.

Rachel did not have children and she tried to fix it herself!

Genesis 30:3, “And she said, See here, take my maid Bilhah and have intercourse with her; and [when the baby comes] she shall deliver it upon my knees, that I by her may also have children.”

Rachel’s solution was to have Jacob marry her maid. Then Leach did the same. She went from sharing her husband with her sister to sharing him with three wives. Legally, he had to regularly sleep with all four of them!

As for my printer…I spent an hour chatting with the company and testing it. It turns out they have to replace the printhead. I could never have fixed it myself.

Prayer: “Dear Lord, help me to be patient and let you fix the other broken things in my life.”

October 6, 2012 – Relevant

My parents remodeled a bathroom in 1977 and I loved the fixtures. I told God I wanted a bathroom just like it when I grew up.

Twenty years later, they remodeled again and gave the fixtures to me. We made a second bathroom in our basement. They are not as pretty now!

When Abraham and Lot split up, Lot chose the prettiest land. Yet, it didn’t stay that way.

Genesis 19:17, “And when they had brought them forth, they said, Escape for your life! Do not look behind you or stop anywhere in the whole valley; escape to the mountains [of Moab], lest you be consumed.”

The valley Lot coveted was totally destroyed, (Genesis 13:10, 11).

When God says no to something pretty we want, it is because he knows what it will look like in the future.

Babysteps – Day 542

Joel Osteen teaches us to pray using scripture. When I heard that sermon, there was a rift between two members of my family. I chose Psalms 133:1, “…brothers dwell together in unity…” and prayed that scripture over their names.

I added other names to that list: two cousins who haven’t spoken in over three decades, a cousin and aunt & uncle, other cousins, friends and their sisters, friends and their brothers, friends and their parents, friends and their in-laws.

My family members worked out their differences and I took them off of my list. A couple of months later, they had another falling out and I put them back on. They eventually worked it out. I thought of the people on that list when I read today’s verse.

Philippians 4:3, “I exhort you too, [my] genuine yokefellow, help these [two women to keep on cooperating], for they have toiled along with me in [the spreading of] the good news (the Gospel), as have Clement and the rest of my fellow workers whose names are in the Book of Life.”

Some people need help to keep cooperating. We know just what to say to drive them further apart. What if we did our best to draw them closer together? The place to start is praying for them. It is also a good verse to pray over those struggling in their marriages.

Babysteps – Day 524

It’s an election year and the fur is flying! Everyone is pushing for “their” candidate. Yes, it is important to vote, but in the end God is the one who places men in positions of authority.

Jeremiah 27:5, “I have made the earth, the men, and beasts that are upon the face of the earth by My great power and by My outstretched arm, and I give it to whomever it seems right and suitable to Me.”

The men in political office now were placed there because God determined it was right and suitable for this time. Our job is to pray for them.