Father there is a storm coming.
To the best of our ability we are each one of us doing what needs to be done to prepare against it.
It is a time of testing.
Wind and rain have the power to find every leak, every weakness in the structures we live and work in, and they will.
In preparing and in engaging with the storm, the wind and rain will expose every weakness we have in the structure of our character as we deal with the work and the people around us.
We are only human Father. In our weakness we need You to be ourselves strong…in body and spirit.
Regardless of what goes on around us, be it in the preparing, the waiting out, or in the aftermath, we put our trust in You and ask for a discipline in our actions that demonstrates our love for You and for our fellow man.
Grant us self control, a clear thinking and fair mind, an empathy for others in the same position as we, a spirit of helpfulness and courtesy and respect towards them and towards our loved ones, our help mates, as well.
Grant us the power to exercise these things as the day progresses and the labor in sun and heat strain and tire our bodies, wear and weaken our ability to behave as you would have us behave.
Give us a calm spirit Abba, and a steadiness that leaves no room for anxiousness, mindless hurry and weakness to frustration and fear.
May we be, by Your presence and power, strong and able to look back in relief that we did nothing to displease or bring shame to You.
May the penetrating power of wind and rain, physical and spiritual, bring us closer to You and one another.
In Yeshua’s name we pray… to You Father…
“to You who can keep “us” from falling and set “us” without defect and full of joy in the presence of “Your” Sh’khinah–
to “You” alone, our Deliverer, through Yeshua the Messiah, our Lord–
Be glory, majesty, power and authority before all time, now and forever.
May God’s love be in us all.
Jude 24-25 CJB
Father thank You for Your love.
Born into this world we will succumb to the influence and grip of sin.
One wrong thing is all it takes and all of Your law is broken.
One wrong thing is all it takes and we are finished. The penalty is death.
We are doomed from the day we are born because, inevitably, one day and quickly, we will fall to that first sin.
It wasn’t Your intention for it to be so and it wasn’t in the beginning.
But it is so now.
You, according to Your perfect purity and just Ways knew we would fail and have to suffer the penalty, each one of us, no escape.
So You provided a Way to overcome that defilement and its penalty.
You freed us from that part of Your law that required death for sin and its defilement.
And the law that once accused and condemned and judged was transformed into instruction for righteous living. The function of identifying evil and its consequence changed and became instead the instruction for good and its reward.
Our inclination and random failings are covered because You make us a new creation with the righteousness of our Redeemer and that new creation is who we now are.
It is because of Your love for us, Your desire for us, Your graciousness and forgiveness towards us… that You are willing to give to us… that when we fall short in our strivings even after making covenant with You, we still have life, can still do good according to Your instructions, that will be counted as righteousness for us.
Who could not fall in love with and love back One who can do that, who is willing to do that and who does do that?
Who would not want… with a heart of love towards You… to do those things which You are pleased by and approve of and which You make known to us so we faithfully strive to continually do them?
You have taken away the condemnation and penalty, created in us a new heart and provided instructions.
Your Spirit is given to dwell with us, instruct and remind and guide us.
By Your Ways and in Your strength we are able to live rightly.
We need only accept You and Your will as supreme over ours, trust in You and accept Your Ways as the rule of our lives each and every day.
We need only have faith that it is possible and is so because of Your grace and mercy and the work of Yeshua alone.
Thank You Father for Your love, that was first from the beginning.
May that part of us, that is Your image in us, grow.
Make it be so that when we love ourselves and others, what we are doing is loving You as well, because it is Your Image we are all created in.
We love You Father because You first loved us.
Thank You Yeshua.
We pray in Your name Yeshua…
I glance over a couple aisles past the one I was headed for and I see a familiar hat. And underneath the hat is a familiar form. And he is standing there talking to a friend we both have that we don’t get to see very often.
So I detour on over and now it’s a threesome catching up in the box store.
Somewhere in the conversation our mutual friend mentions that in reading the recent Torah portion he had come under conviction about a small little thing he was ?guilty? of in the past. It involved a mechanical pencil that he had that wasn’t his. Evidently it was like taking home an item from work and just having it for your own, type thing.
So what got to him was that this was such a little thing for him to come under conviction about, kind of, I guess, the offense, being out of proportion with the level of conviction he was experiencing. Weren’t there more significant flaws that needed dealing with, maybe a question in his mind.
So one of us responds how in the Scriptures there is a ruling that “…if he knocks out his male or female slave’s tooth, he must let him go free in compensation for his tooth…” Exodus 21:27 CJB. The sense of it being that relatively speaking, what seems like a small thing can result in serious/costly consequences.
The other guy mentions how the Word speaks of a caution that “…It takes only a little hametz to leaven the whole batch of dough…” Galatians 5:9 CJB. This in the sense that a small misstep can lead to bigger missteps especially if one considers small things too insignificant to matter.
We do make those kinds of judgments. And they do make us feel like there are some things we don’t have to get overly concerned about. Of course that is a mistake.
So we talked about other things, what’s been happening, ongoing project and such, what I would say was a well rounded conversation.
A little later, as I’m tending to the intended business I was there for, I thought, you know maybe he should have been encouraged by the conviction he was feeling. It seemed like good sense that it he wasn’t feeling conviction over something big, like lying or cheating or back biting that these were things that Yahweh and he had been addressing already and were under control. After all when we come to that point of conviction and brokenness and surrender our will and our lives to Him, our house is being swept clean and put in order. Naturally the big things would be unloaded first. And from there the ongoing “light dusting”, so to speak, would have to be done to continue with our home improvement.
The other point of encouragement would be that our Father was/is present in his life and active in directing his growth. That would be a proof of His concern and love for him.
And then a little later yet I realized what a blessing that encounter and conversation really was for all three of us. There we were, three grown men making conversation about projects we have going on and just as natural as it was to talk about renovation or materials or how to do something, mistakes made and fixes, so it was just as natural for us to talk about the ongoing project of personal spiritual growth, the continual work to maintain and protect and improve the new nature and image we have and aspire to. It was natural, comfortable, normal.
Anytime, anywhere there can be conversation that flows freely and easily between people who aren’t preaching or correcting but are sharing and listening, and commenting on what comes to mind. There is comfort and learning that comes from that. Our fellowship and conversation is enriched.
That kind of ease and comfort doesn’t happen all the time. There are those that we will be hesitant to or actually do not talk to, about God and spiritual things going on in our lives because we are afraid of the reaction…or we know what the reaction is going to be. And we don’t care to go there.
And maybe there is something useful here. In most any conversation acknowledging God, His goodness, that He is, giving Him glory in some way, it could be something that could be said. But could it not be done from a personal perspective? “Praise the Lord or thank God for that or I believe Abba Father was looking out for me on that one.”
We could say things in a way that brings Him up as part of our own lives and doesn’t require agreement or even the other sharing in some way. It’s just a witness that He is the normal reality of our lives and it is just a natural thing for us to do to acknowledge Him in our conversations with folks.
It’s a soft introduction to someone of who we are and who knows where that would lead.
Father…thank You so much!
In drawing close to You we are blessed to be able to draw close to one another.
Thank You that You are present in our lives and that we can share with one another our personal experience with You, with ease and comfort and welcome, anytime, anywhere.
Thank You that we are not alone, because You are with us… and because we have one another.
Guide us Father so that our conversations with those who are not close to You will serve as a glimpse in… and an invitation… and that we will be ready to honestly share.
We love You Yahweh.
In Yeshua’s name we pray,
May God’s love be in us all.