Saturday, July 7, 2007

My word from this morning

I am not quite sure where this is going to go since it is 12:17am. I told you that I had a word this morning and I just have to share. I started to break out my Bible study this morning and I just felt a no...let's go at this with Jenny, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and no moderator. So, as I began my mind turned to the night before with my time in Proverbs. I hate when I start this late at night sharing because I really get worked up by the time it is over and I can't sleep. I have spent so many years pouring over Psalms and Proverbs and they have become some of my most favorite books. When I need wisdom and correction I turn to The "Verbs" (Proverbs) and when I need to relate, find comfort, chastisement, see how BIG God is, when I need to just plain get my focus on Him and worship Him, and put my trust in Him I turn to the Psalms. Well, this morning I sensed that I was knowing the word but I was not hearing it. I can recite it...but I wasn't taking God at His word. Speak to me I prayed and my heart turned to Proverbs Chapter 2. Written by King Solomon (King David's son) I pictured David having his face to face heart to hearts with his son, pleading with him to get wisdom and then Solomon is passing it on. I have a two year old and she makes me want to be free in Christ. I have faltered in so many ways but I so desperately want her to learn from my mistakes without having to go at them on her own. I could just hear David tell Solomon these words from a heart that passionately loved God and knew what it was to miss the mark as Solomon shares them with us. I could just see him trying to teach Solomon that life is vanity and that the things that you think will bring you momentary pleasure (which you may think will bring you lasting pleasure) are not worth anything if you aren't finding your wholeness and worth in God.

Here is all of two so you can get the tone for yourself:

NIV Proverbs 2:1 My son, if you accept my words and store up my commands within you,
2 turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding,
3 and if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding,
4 and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure,
5 then you will understand the fear of the LORD and find the knowledge of God.
6 For the LORD gives wisdom, and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.
7 He holds victory in store for the upright, he is a shield to those whose walk is blameless,
8 for he guards the course of the just and protects the way of his faithful ones.
9 Then you will understand what is right and just and fair-- every good path.
10 For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul.
11 Discretion will protect you, and understanding will guard you.
12 Wisdom will save you from the ways of wicked men, from men whose words are perverse,
13 who leave the straight paths to walk in dark ways,
14 who delight in doing wrong and rejoice in the perverseness of evil,
15 whose paths are crooked and who are devious in their ways.
16 It will save you also from the adulteress, from the wayward wife with her seductive words,
17 who has left the partner of her youth and ignored the covenant she made before God. {17 Or covenant of her God}
18 For her house leads down to death and her paths to the spirits of the dead.
19 None who go to her return or attain the paths of life.
20 Thus you will walk in the ways of good men and keep to the paths of the righteous.
21 For the upright will live in the land, and the blameless will remain in it;
22 but the wicked will be cut off from the land, and the unfaithful will be torn from it.

Then Chapter Three comes and I can just hear this coming from the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, but from the pen of Solomon, and I am sure King David taught him so much of what he wrote if I had to guess...don't you know he wanted Sol. to get wisdom. It is so easy to skip over these next verses because we hear them so much. This morning I fixed Morgan her breakfast and we got her a scripture out of the box. She picked out one randomly and handed it to me...I read it and it was Proverbs 3:5-6. Then I scrolled down on twinkles blog and there it was Proverbs 3:5-6. I promise my Teacher, Jesus, is so repetitious with this stubborn girl for a reason. For those of you who just take it all to the bank good for you...but the Lord really drives it home in His parenting of me.

NIV Proverbs 3:1 My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart,
2 for they will prolong your life many years and bring you prosperity.
3 Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.
4 Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.
5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
6 in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. {6 Or will direct your paths}
7 Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil.
8 This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.

Verse one says that we are to keep His commands on our hearts "2 for they will prolong your life many years and bring you prosperity." Let me ask you a question that I am asking myself: Why do we believe that God is not good so often and try to go our own way? His commands are not burdensome they are always for us. Every time I have bought the same lie Eve did in the garden I have gotten bit and seen firsthand that He was right. That is why it is so important that His words are not words on a page or things that we memorize and rattle off. He wants them to invade our hearts and minds and our beings to the core. Our hearts (seat of emotion) really are deceitful (Jer 17:9) and the only way we will be free in Christ is to have truth so ingrained in us that we discern truth from lies. The Lord doesn't want us to be like what James talks about where we just listen to the word but we don't do what it says. He wants us to remember what we hear and put it into practice.

James 1:22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.
23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror
24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like.
25 But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it-- he will be blessed in what he does.

Let me give you an illustration here. I am going to tell on myself...I have a mirror in my car on my visor. I pull down that visor and I will check to make sure I look okay and then I will check again, and again before I get somewhere. I am always reminded of these verses. It is like seriously Jenny did you just forget what you looked like so you need to check again real quick...get a grip. But really we do this. We hear stuff and we walk away forfeiting our liberty by not putting it into practice. The word for prosperity in verse one is
" shalowm {shaw-lome'} and it means1) completeness, soundness, welfare, peace 1a) completeness (in number) 1b) safety, soundness (in body) 1c) welfare, health, prosperity 1d) peace, quiet, tranquillity, contentment 1e) peace, friendship 1e1) of human relationships 1e2) with God especially in covenant relationship 1f) peace (from war) 1g) peace (as adjective)."
He says that in keeping His commands we will have prosperity: peace. I love that this definition speaks of soundness. I know firsthand what it is like to be tripping in sin and have no soundness in my bones. I also know what it is like to be obedient and have turmoil around me, strife, and war yet have peace that surpasses all understanding. Verse three says let love and faithfulness never leave you. This is so important that he is saying to bind those two things around your neck and write them on the tablet of your heart. The word for faithfulness in the hebrew is:

emeth {eh'-meth}
Meaning: n f 1) firmness, faithfulness, truth 1a) sureness, reliability 1b) stability, continuance 1c) faithfulness, reliableness 1d) truth 1d1) as spoken 1d2) of testimony and judgment 1d3) of divine instruction 1d4) truth as a body of ethical or religious knowledge 1d5) true doctrine adv 2) in truth, truly

I read another definition that tied faithfulness to integrity. So he is saying love and faithfulness should never leave us and then in keeping His word we will win a good name with God and man. So no matter the lie...please believe that God blesses our obedience to Him. This doesn't mean that we might win popularity contests or anything but look at Jesus in Luke 2:52
"And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men."

Faithfulness is something that we are not very good at in this day and age. I have grieved many times at my own lack of faithfulness to God and I have had to accept His forgiveness and go on with Him. The Lord has made it very clear to me that I have to resolve to be a person of integrity or I won't be one at all.
1 Kings 18:21 puts it perfectly to me:
21 Elijah went before the people and said, "How long will you waver between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow him; but if Baal is God, follow him." But the people said nothing.

The LORD cares nothing for me wavering between this world and its cravings and the continual lust for more and Him. I have to choose. If I am not firm about it and do not have a plan...I will waver and falter every time. Verse five is what gets me and I am taking this one believing that "All Scripture is God Breathed": 5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
Trust is the Hebrew word batach {baw-takh'}
Meaning: 1) to trust, trust in to have confidence, be confident, to be bold, to be secure, to cause to trust, make secure to feel safe. The Lord was in essence telling me "Jenny, put your trust in me. Your confidence in me. Rely on Me. Have confidence in my character, that I am who I say I am, who My word tells you that I am. I am your fortress, your stronghold. STOP with your own efforts, cease striving, run to me when your feelings tell you otherwise; when this world tells you otherwise. I will not let you down...EVER!" I wish that I could promise to never let Morgan down, but I can't make that promise. Tonight, when we were at the mall...she got to ride the carousel again. She had me in a head lock and she shook as she rode round and round. I laughed so hard and reassured her that mommy would not let her go and that she could enjoy the ride. Nope...headlock it was. I have been that way so weak, so feeble, and I just had to hold on to God's word and ride. He has then taught me to trust even at times when I have backtracked and forgotten...He held me. So the Lord doesn't want us to lean on our own worldly "if it feels it" understanding. He says, bring your heart to me. Pour it out. I can take it. If what you are acting on does not line up with my word it is a lie and you are being had. Let me tell you it is really hard to not lean on your own understanding when you have a mountain in front of your face that has not budged in years. It is hard not to lean on your understanding when your marriage, family, career, health, and etc are in the toilet as far as you see it. It is the easy, yet damaging thing to do to rely on your understanding and try to do what Sarai and Abram did and help God out (which equals product of the flesh-Ishmael) instead of waiting on Him to come through with your Isaac, to change things, to deliver on His word, to deliver you from self or whatever else. Our natural inclination is to know what God, I have been believing You and have been obedient and you just didn't come through for I am going to help You out (as if) and go my way, and do things my way. It will be the death of us every time.

Here is a definition from the Hebrew for heart (trusting Him with ALL of it)
"leb {labe}
Meaning: 1) inner man, mind, will, heart, understanding 1a) inner part, midst 1a1) midst (of things) 1a2) heart (of man) 1a3) soul, heart (of man) 1a4) mind, knowledge, thinking, reflection, memory 1a5) inclination, resolution, determination (of will) 1a6) conscience 1a7) heart (of moral character) 1a8) as seat of appetites 1a9) as seat of emotions and passions 1a10) as seat of courage"

Then He would what? He would make our paths straight. Over and over in the word you will see that the path of the perverse and the wicked is a crooked path that leads to death. The enemy has an agenda and he wants us to leave the straight path and get on the crooked one. Check out the first several chapters of Proverbs for yourself. So again, trust in Him will everything, lean not on your limited understanding of things. You and I don't see the Big picture. We are limited. Let God be true and every man a liar. The study on Daniel has really been a faith booster for me to see how God has fulfilled His word through the ages. He said it before it ever came to being. Think about it.
Don't be wise in your own eyes...fear the Lord. Fear means to reverence and Awe and then we are told to shun evil.
Shun is the word meaning depart, turn aside, depart away from, turn away from, to avoid. It reminds me of repentance. To turn from something or maybe even someone. To avoid is like an alcoholic going to a bar thinking that they won't take a can't put yourself in the situation thinking that you will be able to stand up against temptation.
We are to shun evil. What exactly is evil? Well here it is the word ra' meaning several things:
harm, evil, bad, malignant, in general, of persons, of thoughts, misery, distress, injury, wrong (ethically or morally), sad, unhappy, hurtful, unkind...

Seriously, and this is first hand experience, we are to shun evil because it is harmful and it takes the health from our bones. It is injurious, always, all the time. Life, joy, peace, and abundance are only found in obedience.
NOW LAST BUT NOT is 2am...I am so tired of the saying "Bloom where you are planted!" Some of us are blooming all right! And we are bearing bad fruit because God did not mean for us to stay where we or the enemy have us planted. He wants anything that is not bearing fruit to be chopped down so we can heal and grow. Some of us need to move out from where we have been and go on with God...not staying where we have become comfortable, complacent and dangerous. I am sick of the enemy and his lies. He is the father of lies. We serve the Victorious One who has already defeated Him on Calvary and given us everything we need for life and godliness so let's live like it and not be fakes...I am sick of it.


Anonymous said...

Amen sister.....wonderful way to start my morning with your encouragement from the word AND pouring forth from your heart...

coram deo,

Leigh Gray said...

Boy - you did get a word!! Love it - Not faking it here!

I wish I could be there for Wise Up at your church like you suggested on LPM blog. Hey - do you know Dr. S. Alred? He used to be at my church in Charlotte. Great people he and his wife!

Have a wonderful and hopefully you are getting some sleep!


twinkle said...

Hey, that was a long, tall drink of LIVING WATER and so many of us are dying of thirst! Thank you for pouring it out, little lamb of Christ. You are truly a relection of Christ...I can just imagine the huge smile on His face because your words will encourage many not to stumble into the crooked path. God answers ALL 911 calls!!

May GOD speak,