Have you ever had a section of Scripture seem commonplace and almost boring because you have read it so often? I reluctantly confess that my thoughts were inclined to wander down that dangerous path as I came to yet another portion which was sooooooo familiar. Then the Lord asked me about my wedding ring. He asked if familiarity had bred contempt for it and if I was bored with it because I'd had it so long. Of course not! My wedding ring is something I treasure because of all it represents of promise, faithfulness, love, commitment and security. I would never brush it aside just because it is familiar; in fact, its very familiarity makes it dearer.
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(8) Smyrna was founded by Alexander the Great and is claimed to be the birthplace of Homer, the Greek poet of the ninth century. The principal commercial product was myrrh. The word MYRRH means ...? -- (bitter). It was gum resin from a thorny tree, had a bitter taste and was used in perfume, medicine, holy anointing oil and for embalming the dead.
I was listening to Jesus pray; I heard Him say to the Father (John 17:4,22), "I have glorified You and the glory which You gave Me I have given them."
Then I began to wonder ... what am I doing with the glory? What is this glory, this gift given by the Father to His beloved Son, which Jesus has bequeathed to us?
Genesis 49:24 (Amplified)
The first part of the verse says that although Joseph was bitterly attacked, sorely worried, shot at and persecuted (vs.23); his bow remained strong and steady. Toward the end of the verse it says that his hands were made strong and active.
What was the secret of his victorious and productive life?
It's an open secret and it's also contained in the same verse. We're told that he RESTED in the
Strength that does not fail him and that his hands were made strong by the hands of the
How often do we fail to equate REST with victory?
How often do we wrongly equate REST with inactivity?
It certainly did not signal "Siesta Time" for Moses, just prior to resuming the journey, when the Lord said, "My Presence shall go with you and I will give you REST" (Ex.33:14). It was the assurance that Moses could REST confidently in God's enabling for all that was before him.
Again we come back to the Words of Jesus, "I can of My own self do nothing. The Father Who lives in Me, He does the work."
Joseph's RESTFUL availability to God allowed God to get into action on Joseph's behalf and to energize him for the good works God had prepared for him.
Whatever we face; no matter how mundane our routine, or how tedious the task, or how confining the circumstances, or how deep the trial, or how harsh the difficulty, or how uncertain the future; let us determine to REST in the Strength that does not fail us and then, for everything we do, we will find that our hands are made strong by the hands of the MIGHTY GOD.
With love & prayers,
Regret/Remorse -- Judas
Repentance -- Peter
Sin (any sin, no matter what else we call it) is the exchange of God's glory for vileness.
As we approach Y2K, REMEMBER ... it will take courage and discipline to go against the flow. Especially now as we face this particular year which is pregnant with foreboding. Some predict disaster in Y2K and some herald it as a great year for the establishing of One World Order. We hear of almost unbelievable things happening to Christians even in our Western World. We are bombarded by seeming implications that evil is winning.
I was reading the first chapter of II Peter, where Peter instructs believers in righteous living. He told them that as long as he lived he would remind them of these things and would endeavour to see that even after his death they would be able to recall them. I read verse 14, where Peter said that the Lord Jesus Christ had made clear to him that his death would come very soon.
It was rather a long drive, on that particular day it seemed long and tedious. But suddenly our weariness was changed to exhilaration. We were entranced by a rainbow as it arched against the changing sky in magnificent glory.
No, don't look. If you look you won't see me because if you get up close and personal with me, I'll just try to make you laugh. Humour is a great shield and I learned to use it well and hide behind it; and lose myself in books and in my imagination. I can remember keeping my coat on during hot Summer days; sweltering and hiding in my coat. Many areas of hurt and rejection had made it abundantly clear to me that I was nothing but a bother and a nuisance. I knew that no one would ever like me. So I built a shell around me and went my independent way; never having any needs, of course!
Psalm 15:2-4 Integrity when it hurts leads to Freedom
She seemed like a pleasant, capable young woman when I hired her. She had a religious upbringing and professed faith in God and the importance of honesty and good deeds. I had opportunity to show many kindnesses to her and after she married, had her and her husband in our home for dinner. I don't really know what changed her but the change was real and ugly in her choice of friends, her language, her attitude and her job performance. It became increasingly evident that she hated God and I was her target. She lied about me to the office staff and undermined me in every possible way. Our offices were in two locations and, as office and personnel manager, I had an office in both buildings. As I walked through the different offices I could feel the tension, hear the whispers, see the suspicious glances. When I said, "Good Morning," she would mimic me in a sarcastic tone. She responded rudely when I gave instructions regarding the work. During the worst period of her attacks, there was a time or two when she needed help and though she accepted my help and favours, her attitude and behaviour did not improve. The quality of her work deteriorated to the point where I knew it was not fair to the Company to continue her employment. But I had to be so careful that none of my personal feelings were involved in discharging her.