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Psalm 37 has long been one of my favorites and I've found great comfort with God there. Yes, I've committed everything to God, but my battle is that it seems that my problems or worries sometimes come back, it's like he is handing them back to me? Or is it just my lack of total, complete surrender to Christ? Either way, I pray and stay in the range of God's grace and I hand everything back to him and find peace, it's getting better and this Blog and my readings early in the morning in the bible are transforming my life!

I think, like Michael, most of us have that experience of surrender--but the worry, the sin, the problem returns. In light of all these Levitical sacrifices, I am reminded that in Romans 12:1 we are called to be "living sacrifices." As the old pastor's joke goes, living sacrifices keep getting off the table! So we keep bringing ourselves back, take up our cross daily, and work on living out the truth on a moment to moment basis.

I noticed in the reading, too, that the fire for the burnt offerings must never go out. It struck me that since the burnt offering is a freewill offering, a kind of worship, that God is always ready to ready to receive both our worship and our confession. The fire had to be kept burning so that it would never appear that God was not ready for relationship with us.

Finally, I also love the delighting yourself in God and Him granting the desires of your heart. The more we delight in him, the more are desires are transformed into worshipful, worthy desires and He delights in granting those!

michah girl ... Romans 12:1 we are called to be "living sacrifices." As the old pastor's joke goes, living sacrifices keep getting off the table! - that is HUMOR!!!
i've never heard it - i guess i don't know any old pastors!!!
thanks for the insight and sharing from both of you!
i too struggle with this complete surrender - sometimes from one moment to the next.
recently i've really been struggling with a friend who betrayed and lied to me, it really hurt me. one moment i'll be in place of complete compassion and forgiveness of this friend - and the next moment i'll get fired up at thier lack of acknowledgment/remorse or flat out caring about me or the relationship. which i think, if i still get fired up, even mildly, i've not truly forgiven.
it's like i lie on the table as a 'living sacrifice', but then get up and pace around ... lie back down ... pace around some more ... when does it end?
that's why the journey is not a straight path!
peace!
r

Leviticus 6:1-7:27

Yesterday I asked a question about intentional sin because all of the sacrifices mentioned in the previous five chapters deal with unintentional sin. Intentional sin requires restitution of the damaged good or stolen item plus twenty percent, along with guilt offering and probably a couple of the other offerings, like a fellowship or peace offering to get back into right relationship with God and man.

Interesting that one of the Proverbs we have read states that a thief if he is caught must restore seven times the value. Proverbs 6: 30 Men do not despise a thief if he steals to satisfy himself when he is hungry; 31 But if he is found out, he must restore seven times [what he stole]; he must give the whole substance of his house [if necessary--to meet his fine]. (AMP)

I wonder if the restoring seven times refers to the hidden costs not covered in the cost of the item plus twenty percent. There is a price to be paid beyond the value of the item and that represents the interest rate for intentional sin. Ouch!
Mark 3:7-30
Two things in the passage caught my attention verses eleven and twenty-one.

3:11 And whenever those possessed by evil spirits caught sight of him, they would fall down in front of him shrieking, "You are the Son of God!"

Verse eleven shows us that even demons possessed folk recognized Jesus and who He was, the Son of God. Then why is it so difficult for people who are supposed to be in their right mind to fail to recognize Jesus for who He is? Is it because we have consciously chosen to reject the Truth?

Today at work I wrestled with asking someone a question because I didn’t want to seem like one of those “crazy” bible thumpers folks talk about. But right here in verse twenty-one, it says that Jesus’ family; his “Peeps” (People) came to take him away ‘cause they said, “He’s out of his mind.” The students are going to be called the same thing as their teacher.

Psalm 37:1-11
4 Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.

This is the first passage or verse that spoke to me powerfully when I first began my yearly reading through the bible over twenty years ago. My image, my idea of who God was changed when I read this verse and it began opening up too me. Because I had judged Jesus and His Father, God, by their disciples, or those who claimed to be their disciples, I had a messed up image of who God was. This verse began to change my perception of who God was and what He was to me. God wanted to give me my heart’s desire. He wasn’t looking to beat me up, crush me under his hand or even do me evil; this verse said He not only to meet my needs He wanted to take care of my wants.

A couple of years latter, this same verse popped up; however, I was in a struggle with God over what it meant. As I came to this verse as I read through the thirty-seventh chapter I heard a still small voice say, “Read it again you’re reading it wrong.”

First, who said that? And by the way God I know how to read and I have good reading comprehension. But every time I read and reread the passage I heard the same thing, “Read it again you’re reading it wrong.”

I’m not sure how long this struggle when on but I finally became exhausted and gave in though I was sarcastic in my surrender “Well I guess I can’t read so what does it say?” What I heard in my spirit stunned me. From that encounter I realized I still knew nothing about who God was and I understood that my knowledge of God had been obscured by my arrogance. Even though my surrender was not sincere God still dealt with me. In my sprit I heard, “Delight yourself in me and I will place within your heart the desires you are suppose to have.” Now I saw how I was reading it wrong. I thought I could dictate to God by taking my unredeemed dreams, visions and well yes, my lusts, and think He was going to give them to me. My image of God was still being rrworded and reshaped by God Himself.

Fast forward to three/four years ago and I’m back to the same verse but this time I hear, “Look up the Hebrew word translated “Delight.” This time there was no arguing so I pulled out my Strongs Concordance and “Got Busy.” What I found changed me again
In the edition that I had it stated that the Hebrew word translated Delight meant to be pliable and malleable. The Hebrew word transliterated `anag according to the Hebrew Lexicon that is on the WEB site CrossWalk.com also means to be soft, be delicate, be dainty.

To Delight meant that I was to soften myself and so that I could mold myself to the image of God and not the other way ‘round. I also learned that all revelation is progressive that the knowledge that comes from studying scripture will never be complete until we see Jesus face to face. I learned that the more I know the more I will understand that I really don’t know. I learned that God was changing me into His image because I was incapable of changing myself.

Proverbs 10:3-4

God takes care of those that are His. Even though we may know this by mental assenting, living it out without striving is another matter. Trusting to God, believing God will do what He says He do is something I still struggle with.

Grace and peace,
Ramona

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