“Now, Isra’el, listen to the laws and rulings I am teaching you, in order to follow them, so that you will live; then you will go in and take possession of the land that ADONAI, the God of your fathers, is giving you…Only be careful, and watch yourselves diligently as long as you live, so that you won’t forget what you saw with your own eyes, so that these things won’t vanish from your hearts.”~ Moses to the Israelites (D’varim 4:1,9) CJB
“Because I live, you too will live.”~ Yeshua to His disciples (John 14:19)
For the Kingdom of God is…righteousness, shalom and joy in the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit). ~Romans 14:17 (CJB)
“While it may be SAFE to simply look upon The Promised Land, it is certainly NOT SATISFYING!”
To Muse Or Not to Muse
We CANNOT WAIT to spend time with someone we TRULY love, can we?
In today’s world, are we guilty of having exchanged God’s glory for Amusements of every sort? Could this be the culprit for many stale Christian lives?
The word ‘muse‘ means to ‘give careful consideration; to think deeply’. When you attach the prefix ‘a‘, you negate the word meaning. In essence, amuse means ‘to not think deeply; to not carefully consider’. One helpful dictionary added to its meaning of amuse: ‘to stare stupidly at something’.
Are there activities in your life, in your family’s lives that have drawn your eyes away from your Creator and thus caused you to ‘stare stupidly’ wasting away your time on earth?
Moses’ heartfelt prayer recorded in Psalm 90:
Adonai, You have been our dwelling place in every generation. Before the mountains were born, before You had formed the earth and the world, from eternity past to eternity future You are God. 3 You bring frail mortals to the point of being crushed, then say, “People, repent!” …12 So teach us to number our days, so that we may gain a heart of wisdom.
The ‘heart if wisdom‘ Moses asks for, is the ‘heart of skillful living‘ given by God as we think deeply upon His Word – forsaking the amusements of this world that keep us from Him.
In the coming weeks, we contemplate the overwhelmingly great deception of images in our world, and how they not only draw our eyes away from ADONAI our God; but inevitably, they cloud our eyes from knowing the Truth that sets us free to live skillfully…to live abundantly by His Ruach.
As I sat yesterday morning thanking the LORD for His goodness…His immeasurable goodness!…He whispered to me a lovely word of encouragement:
It is LOVE that opens the door for TRUTH to walk in…
This is true in every situation.
And if so, it is LOVE – HIS LOVE for us and our LOVE for HIM – that will cause even the most vile pit dweller to be raised up, with firmly established feet, singing his NEW SONG and living abundantly in the Good Land God has promised His faithful.
Shema! (Listen and Obey!)
Love and Truth combined create change.
What’s LOVE got to do…Got to do with it?
Let us now muse on the affections of our heart for God. For the things of God.
How are you doing here?
If the world’s amusements have captivated our minds, then our lives will be held captive for the enemy to torment. The world’s captivity destroys.
The captivity of El Elyon, however, sets the captive free. To live within the confines of God’s Truth is to be free. You can think of it this way…
A whale is free to be a whale only in the sea. And a bird is free to be a bird only in the sky.
So has LOVE entered in? Has Truth flooded your dwelling place?
Who has captivated your heart? Is it the world? Or is it the Lover of your soul?
The Church at Ephesus in Revelation 2 lends great insight into what many of us are facing this very moment. The message is a simple one.
We have LEFT our FIRST LOVE.
Nevertheless I have [somewhat] against you, because you have left your first love.
left – The Greek word is aphiemi (af-ee’-ay-mee) taken from two words apo meaning ‘off’ and heimi ‘to send away’ or relax. Picture yourself intensely gripping an object. As you begin to slowly loosen your grip, whatever you hold in your hand begins to gradually fall away. When you put apo and heimi together, it literally means: forsake, lay aside, leave, let (alone, be, go, have), omit, put (send) away, remit, yield up.
HUMAN LOVE has a way of waxing and waning when it is not carefully, intentionally and painstakingly tended to. The thorny weeds of life’s worries and cares contend for our every attention. As they grow taller, they begin block the Sun upon our soil, eventually shutting out any Rays of Hope.
And unless they are yanked up by the root while yet tender, they will grow, spread and overtake the field. Cultivating that precious LOVE RELATIONSHIP with ADONAI – as well as with those we love – is the only sure measure for a growing LOVE that waxes more than it wanes…
I believe, Ladies, that when we are not intentional and careful in handling this Word of LIFE, we become complacent and too familiar with the Bible giving it our stamp of approval as if it were a common word. In doing so, we forsake the Author HIMSELF, turning His Divine Commands into MERE SUGGESTIONS.
You don’t need me to tell you that THE WORD OF GOD is no common word!
No matter how much ‘Bible’ we may know, we are prone to wander, and forget that ABUNDANT LIFE is found at Jesus’ feet…not simply TALKING ABOUT HIM…BUT SITTING WITH HIM!
Anything less has it’s ‘come-uppins’!
..they retain the outer form of religion but deny its power. Stay away from these people! 6 For some of them worm their way into homes and get control of weak-willed women who are heaped with sins and swayed by various impulses, 7 who are always learning but never able to come to full knowledge of the truth. ~ 2 Timothy 3
Is anybody listening?
Our part of being intentional and careful in handling God’s Word of Life is to uproot the worries and amusements that keep His Liberating Love from entering in.
Think about the two on the Road to Emmaus in Luke 24. After Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection (no less!), these two were WALKING alongside Him and didn’t even know who He was! But the Scripture says (vv 30,31):
“Now it came to pass, as Jesus sat at the table with them, that He took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened and they knew Him”
Only through the glorious fellowship of sitting with HIM are our EYES REALLY OPENED!
…Love opened the door for Truth to walk in
Nevertheless, this is not about an ancient church at Ephesus. It is about you and me because a TRANSFORMED and LIVING CONGREGATION only happens one person at a time.
Demand a R-E-C-A-L-L!
The Israelites – the very ones who witnessed firsthand MASSIVE MIRACLES – had become so familiar with God’s words and His works that they had forgotten THE MOST IMPORTANT WORD that had the power to usher them into Truth and Abundance:
LOVE THE LORD your GOD with ALL your HEART, SOUL, MIND AND STRENGTH (COMMANDMENT #1) because IT IS ONLY AS WE ABIDE HERE THAT all else flows from our lives as truly DELIGHT
…’Delight yourself in the LORD and THEN He will give you to the desires of your (transformed!) heart’!
So how then do we begin to live abundantly and regain that LOVE we had at first? Perhaps you have never before tasted and seen that the LORD is good.
It begins and ends with the Word of God.
So rid yourselves of all vulgarity and obvious evil (THIS IS DISPOSSESSING), and receive meekly the Word implanted in you that can save your lives.
May I offer you today a glorious REMINDER for RECEIVING MEEKLY GOD’S WORD that contains the POWER to save your lives and cause you to live abundantly:
Begin by R–E–C–A–L–L ing!
‘Remember Your Purpose!’
What is our purpose? It is to GLORIFY GOD!
This is how My Father is glorified — in your bearing much fruit; this is how you will prove (TO YOURSELF AND OTHERS) to be My DISCIPLES.
The Westminster Catechism: ‘The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.’
I recently heard a young man’s testimony of God’s faithfulness in his very difficult life. Nick Vujicic was born without any arms or legs. And this very eloquent young man from Australia had this very insightful comment to proclaim to all listening:
“Life without purpose is life without meaning…and life without meaning is life without hope!”
IT’s true, isn’t it?
If you are not familiar with Nick Vujicic’s story, you ought to be.
KNOWING MY PURPOSE then CLARIFIES and MOTIVATES MY MISSION: TO BEAR MUCH FRUIT IN ALL WE DO!
‘You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you.’ ~ John 15:16
God’s chosen people are unable to be satisfied outside of His purpose and plan to bear much fruit.
God’s chosen people are unable to possess our God-given Promised Land outside of fulfilling our purpose.
How many times have you asked the LORD to FIX your situation? Yet, His modus operandi is to FIX you.
Verily,Verily, His desire is certainly to breathe NEW LIFE into your situation, but HE does so by BREATHING NEW LIFE into you! Thus, by default NEW LIFE is emerging in the middle of your situation!
Inherent within the NEW LIFE are NEW EYES. And these ‘new eyes’ are what we begin to view our situations and trials through.
The LORD oftentimes will not change our situations UNTIL HE changes us. Because it’s the change of the person, not the change of the situation, that HE is really after.
HE FORMULATES His WORKS beforehand (Ephesians 2:10) that HE may FORM His WORSHIPERS in the end.
Despite what our feelings might lead us to believe, these fore-ordained trials are NOT meant to DESTROY us…
It’s because ADONAI hated us that He has brought us out of the land of Egypt, only to hand us over to the Emori to destroy us’ ~ D’varim 1:27
On the contrary, they are meant to DEVELOP us…
Be careful not to forget ADONAI your God by not obeying His mitzvot, rulings and regulations that I am giving you today. Otherwise…you will become proud-hearted. Forgetting ADONAI your God – Who brought you out of the land of Egypt, where you lived as slaves; …all the while humbling and testing you in order to do you good in the end.” ~ D’varim 8:11-16
- LORD, what are the amusements in my life that have slowly drawn my eyes away from You?
- What are the worries in my life that need to be uprooted?
- What are some specific ways that I might better cultivate my existing LOVE RELATIONSHIPS with both You and my family?
- LORD, create in me a NEW HEART that I might intentionally and carefully handle Your Word and replace the amusements in my life with the study of Your Word. What can I cut out to do so?
- LORD, have I loosened my grip on You? Thank You, Faithful Father, that You have not loosened Your grip on me!