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DIVISION CHAPLAINS

Who We Are – God’s Message

Week 6 Day 4 – Going for Gold, Vessels of Honor

19Nevertheless, the firm foundation of God stands, having this seal, “The Lord knows those who are His,” and, “Everyone who names the name of the Lord is to abstain from wickedness.” 20Now in a large house there are not only gold and silver vessels, but also vessels of wood and of earthenware, and some to honor and some to dishonor. 21Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from these things, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work.  2 Timothy 2:19-21

 

Once gold is purified and perfected, it becomes useable and valuable.  It is ready for promotion into a sellable commodity.  It is now a vessel of honor, useful to God our Master who has prepared us for every good work.  This is our END.  This is God’s desire:  only that we fulfill the destiny for which HE designed us to fulfill and placed us here on this earth in this time at this place to fulfill.

 

God knew the END at the beginning.  11Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end. 12So I concluded there is nothing better than to be happy and enjoy ourselves as long as we can. 13And people should eat and drink and enjoy the fruits of their labor, for these are gifts from God.  Ecclesiastes 3:11-13

 

He has designed us with purpose.  He designed us to enjoy the work and life.  Doing what God wants brings great joy to Him and us.  Fulfill your purpose – your END.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Yield to God.  Thank Him for creating you just as you are.  Celebrate His plan for your life, even if you have yet to discover it.

 

PRAYER:  Holy Father, Master Creator, I am Your vessel.  Melt me.  Mold me.  Shape me.  Hammer me until I am fit the service You desire.  Amen.

Week 6 Day 3 – Going for Gold

Make a lampstand of pure gold. Hammer out its base and shaft, and make its flowerlike cups, buds and blossoms of one piece with them. Exodus 25:31

“He also made the lampstand of pure gold. He made the lampstand of hammered work. Its base, its stem, its cups, its calyxes, and its flowers were of one piece with it.”  Exodus 37:7

 

Did you notice the word ‘hammer’ and ‘hammered’ in the two scriptures above?  “Practical readers will be apt to say, “Why do such works with the hammer, when they could have been cast so much easier—a process they were well acquainted with?” states Jamieson-Fausset-Brown in his commentary.  So why did God command the gold to be hammered?

 

Let’s check out these facts from the American Museum of Natural History:

1.      Gold is highly reflective of heat and light. The visors of astronauts’ space helmets receive a coating of gold so thin (0.00005 millimeters, or 0.000002 inches) that it is partially transparent. The astronauts can see through it, but even at that thinness the gold film reduces glare and heat from sunlight.

2.      Gold is malleable, so it can be flattened into extremely thin sheets. The walls of the Gold Room are covered with approximately 28 square meters (300 square feet) of 23-karat gold leaf representing 3 ounces of gold metal. Gold leafing–also known as gilding–is an ancient technique. Traditional artisans beat raw gold between pieces of leather until it was almost too thin to be seen. One ounce of gold may be hammered thin enough to cover more than 9 square meters (96.9 square feet) of a surface. The gold leaf may be only 0.18 microns (seven millionths of an inch) thick; a stack of 7,055 sheets would be no thicker than a dime.

From this I gather two things:  1.  God desires that we be transparent but effective in our work.  God and people need to be able to see through us.   Hammering thins us out to remove any hidden faults.  2.  We are to be malleable/shapeable/teachable to God always.  When we yield to Him, He can do so much more with us and impact so many more people than we can on our own.

 

THE DIG:  Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary

37:1-29 The making of the ark, and the furniture of the tabernacle. – In the furniture of the tabernacle were emblems of a spiritual and acceptable service. The incense represented the prayers of the saints. The sacrifice of the alter represented the Lamb of God that taketh away the sins of the world. The golden pot with manna, or bread from heaven, the flesh of Jesus Christ, which he gave for the life of the world. The candlestick, with its lights, the teaching and enlightening of the Holy Spirit. The shew-bread represented that provision for those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, which the gospel, the ordinances and the sacraments of the house of prayer, abundantly bestow. The exactness of the workmen to their rule, should be followed by us; seeking for the influences of the Holy Spirit, that we may rejoice in and glorify God while in this world, and at length be with him for ever.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Search your mind for all the ways you have felt hammered recently.  Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal other areas where you wondered ‘why?’ or ‘where are you God?”  Ask Him to reveal His hammering work in your life.

 

PRAYER:  Loving Father, You purify me with fire and You hammer me into shape.  Oh, how often I have prayed for deliverance from the enemy when it was You working, hammering me into a beautiful shape to serve you.  Today, Father I sit transparent before You.  Make me into what You desire for my life.  Amen.

Week 6 Day 2 – Going for Gold

2Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, 3for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. 4And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.  James 4:2-4

 

Gold must be perfected.  Being perfected is different than being purified.  Being perfected means to be conformed into a shape for use.  Gold becomes more valuable as it is given a shape to serve a desired purpose.  God has chosen the common trials and tribulations of life as the tools to shape us into the image of His Son.

 

28And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. 29For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified. Romans 8:28-30

 

THE DIG:  The “perfection” which is to be attained in this life may be further illustrated from Hebrews 12:23 – a passage which is often misunderstood, but which undoubtedly means that the men were made perfect, and that not in a future state, but here on earth, where alone they can be subject to those trials and conflicts by the patient endurance of which they are perfected for a higher state of being. ..….”The trial of your faith worketh patience; but let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, lacking in nothing. But if any man lack wisdom, let him ask of the giving God… and it shall be given him; but let him ask in faith, nothing doubting, for he that doubteth,” etc.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Praise God for whatever trial and tribulation you are going through at the moment.  Ask God to show you what He is trying to accomplish in you.  Then COOPERATE rather than pray for deliverance from it.  This one step will accelerate your ‘perfecting’ process.  There is no way out, only through.

 

PRAYER:  Holy Father, perfect me.  Make me like Jesus as You say is Your desired purpose.  Remind me to cooperate rather than resist Your shaping elements.  I desire to be a vessel of Your design.  I rejoice in Your work in my life! Amen.

Week 6 – Victory! Going for Gold

Here we are in the final week.  Maybe you have yet to reach your desired END but you can celebrate the VICTORY of completing this Bible Study.  This week we go for GOLD.  Gold is the ultimate standard of achievement.  “The Gold Standard” “was a commitment by participating countries to fix the prices of their domestic currencies in terms of a specified amount of gold. The gold standard was a commitment by participating countries to fix the prices of their domestic currencies in terms of a specified amount of gold.” (Definition from the Library of Economics and Liberty)

 

Week 6 Day 1   Purified Gold

 

22Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a sincere love of the brethren, fervently love one another from the heart, 23for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God.… I Peter 1:22-23

 

This week we go for GOLD.  God knows the end from the beginning.  He has a great sense of timing, purpose and humor.  Some might even call it coincidence but we know there is no such word in Hebrew – God’s language.  As we enter our week of ‘Going for GOLD’ so do the world’s athletes.  The winter Olympics begin tomorrow in Sochi Russia.  Thousands of people have competed and trained to earn a coveted spot in the Olympics.  They all have one goal:  GOLD!

 

To be golden or the best we can be should be our goal as well in life.

 

Gold has an issue.  It needs to be transformed from its crude rock into a useable form.  It begins its transformation through a process of purification.  The purer the gold the greater the value.  24 carat gold is more valuable and costly than 10 carat gold.

 

The message God wants us to hear is that we are His gold, His masterpiece and His prized possessions.  God demands the highest quality of each nugget (us).  He meticulously applies the purification process until we are conformed into the image of Jesus.  Each day and each struggle is part of that process.

He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; he will purify the Levites and refine them like gold and silver. Then the LORD will have men who will bring offerings in righteousness,  Malachi 3:3

 

I share this story with you to help you clearly understand.

 

Refining Silver

Some time ago, a few ladies met in a certain city to read the scriptures, and make them the subject of conversation. While reading the third chapter of Malachi they came upon a remarkable expression in the third verse: “And He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver.” One lady’s opinion was that is was intended to convey the view of the sanctifying influence of the grace of Christ. Then she proposed to visit a silversmith and report to them what he said on the subject.

She went accordingly and without telling the object of her errand, begged to know the process of refining silver, which he fully described to her. “But Sir” she said, “do you sit while the work of refining is going on?” “Oh, yes, madam,” replied the silversmith; “I must sit with my eye steadily fixed on the furnace, for if the time necessary for refining be exceeded in the slightest degree, the silver will be injured.”

The lady at once saw the beauty, and comfort too, of the expression, “He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver.” Christ sees it needful to put His children into a furnace; His eye is steadily intent on the work of purifying, and His wisdom and love are both engaged in the best manner for them. Their trials do not come at random; “the very hairs of your head are all numbered.”

As the lady was leaving the shop, the silversmith called her back, and said he had forgotten to mention that the only way that he knows when the process of purifying is complete when he sees his own image reflected in the silver….

–Author Unknown

“As YHWH’s Creations, most of us have gone through “fire” in one way or another and, hopefully, we learned from the experience. Through our trials and tribulations, rough edges were smoothed and sharp edges were sloughed off, until we more closely resembled what we were meant to be.

God allows us to go through hard times so that we may grow and become smooth and shiny. His goal is for us to become a reflection of Him that not only He can see, but also so others can see Him in us.

The sooner we realize that, the quicker we become a valuable member of the Family of God….”  from the Refiner’s Fire.org

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Praise God for the purification process.

 

PRAYER:  Father, today and every day may I embrace Your refining work in my life.  Teach me to cooperate rather than grumble and complain and balk.   Help me choose to trust YOU more in each trial and tribulation.  Now I know and can rejoice in Your purifying process in my life.  Through the power of Jesus’ name, amen.

Week 5 Day 7 – What Will it Cost God and His Kingdom?

The Law and The Prophets were until John; from then, the Kingdom of God is announced, and everyone is pushing to enter it.” Luke 16:16  Aramaic Bible in Plain English

 

Have you considered that if you and I are doing what we are designed to do on this earth, we will cause people to adamantly seek the Kingdom of God.  And when we are in opposition to what we are created to do, we will keep people from the lover of their souls, the King Jesus Christ.

 

Maybe you disagree with that statement.  Let’s go to the dig and understand what Jesus was saying in verse 16.

 

The DIG:

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 16. – The Law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.

 

Here (in the sixteenth verse), the Master went on speaking to the Pharisees who derided him (ver. 14). “Up to the period of John the Baptist,” said the Master, “the old state of things may be said to have continued in force. With him began a new era; no longer were the old privileges to be confined to Israel exclusively; gradually the kingdom of God was to be enlarged, the old wall of separation was to be taken down. See, every man is pressing into it; the new state of things has already begun; you see it in the crowds of publicans, sinners, Samaritans, and others pressing round me when I speak of the kingdom of God.”

 

Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible

and every man presseth into it; the Gospel dispensation, the kingdom of the Messiah; “that he may enter into it”, as the Syriac and Persic versions add; which the Scribes and Pharisees did all they could to hinder; see Matthew 23:13 large multitudes crowded the ministry of John, of Christ, and of his apostles; the people flocked in great numbers to hear the word, and seemed disposed to embrace the doctrines of the Gospel, and the ordinances of it; they pressed on one another to hear it, and through many difficulties, discouragements, and obstacles, the Pharisees threw in their way; there was scarce a man but seemed very desirous of attending upon the preaching of it, and pressed hard for it; and with much force and violence, with great eagerness and endeavour broke his way to it; though a different sense is given by others reading the words, and “every one suffers violence to himself for it”, as the Arabic version; or “is oppressed for it”, as the Ethiopic; that is, suffers reproach, contradiction, and persecution, for the sake of hearing it.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Ask the Holy Spirit to show you where you have spurred (yes like a cowboy does a horse), incited (as in a riot) or even enticed someone to seek to know the God you claim to know and represent.  Ask Him how you can do this better.  Ask Him to strengthen you to fulfill your purpose on earth and reach your desired END.

 

PRAYER:  Holy Father, may someone ask me “what must I do to be saved” because they see the relationship I have with You.  Draw me nearer to You O Lord, I pray.  Amen.

“…and after he brought them out, he said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.”  John 16:30-31

Week 5 Day 6 – Count the Cost

So then, every person among us gives an account of himself to God.  Romans 14:12

 

What will it cost you if fail to reach your goal?

Our scripture says every person will stand before Almighty God and give an account of himself to God.  Today is the day to take inventory and measure how well we are doing?  If tomorrow you were to stand before God, could you say like Paul, “For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing.”  2 Timothy 4:6-8

What would you change?  No.  What WILL you change?  Today is the deciding point.  Do you and I decide that it is too hard, it requires too much effort, or it is too much for us to do?  Do we stay in our rut and be buried or do we rise up with faith or at least a cry for help and begin to change?

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Write your eulogy.  Yes that’s right.  Imagine you have died.  What would be said about you?  How is the world different because you have walked upon this earth?  Whose lives are better? Or worse?  Take stock.  Count the cost of your life in this world.

Now imagine your END.  See the accomplishment and fulfillment of EVERY detail.  Look at how the people are impacted.  See the looks on their faces.  Hear their words of thanks.  Savor every morsel of this life.

Now re-write your eulogy.  This time address it to God rather than people.

 

Here is what Paul was able to say after he changed his life from a legalistic, self-righteous, religious person who murdered people to being a disciple of Jesus Christ.

I have fought an excellent fight; I have finished my race and I have kept my faith. 2 Timothy 4:7

But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God. Acts 20:24

I went in response to a revelation and, meeting privately with those esteemed as leaders, I presented to them the gospel that I preach among the Gentiles. I wanted to be sure I was not running and had not been running my race in vain. Galatians 2:2

The runner in the race had a definite δρόμος, or course to run, marked out for him. St. Paul’s life was that course, and he knew that he had run it out.

 

PRAYER:  St Patrick’s Prayer

As I arise today,

may the strength of God pilot me,

the power of God uphold me,

the wisdom of God guide me.

May the eye of God look before me,

the ear of God hear me,

the word of God speak for me.

May the hand of God protect me,

the way of God lie before me,

the shield of God defend me,

the host of God save me.

May Christ shield me today.

Christ with me, Christ before me,

Christ behind me,

Christ in me, Christ beneath me,

Christ above me,

Christ on my right, Christ on my left,

Christ when I lie down, Christ when I sit,

Christ when I stand,

Christ in the heart of everyone who thinks of me,

Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,

Christ in every eye that sees me,

Christ in every ear that hears me.

Amen

Week 5 Day 5

For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.  Ephesians 2:10

You should have a written END by this point in the Bible Study.  Maybe you’ve been given a ‘vision’ of what it looks like, feels like, smells like and you know it in detail.  But now you are stuck because you need some way to cross the chasm of ‘what next?’ in order to get from where you are to where you know you are to go.

 

What is the next logical step?  “I DON”T KNOW!” you cry.  I’m with you.  I too have stood at the edge of that massive canyon of the unknown and what now.

 

The next step is to talk.  Talk about it with everyone who will listen.  Something amazing happens when we begin to give it voice.  Others are invited into it and will give insight.  God will put words in your mouth of things you’ve yet to think.  You begin to see the reality and to uncover the first stepping stone.

 

As you talk, begin to set goals.  Each goal is a step.  Each step will bring you closer to your END.

 

THE DIG:

“Goals are the “map” that will guide you toward your God-given purpose, without setting them you will also wander in circles without getting where you need to go.

“Many people wrongly think, “Goal setting is unspiritual because it shows a lack of trust. It’s not right to plan. Instead, people should wait for God to lead them.”

“Granted, God doesn’t want us to forge ahead in pride without consulting Him for direction. But neither does He want us to sit around without acting, because He’s given us gifts and talents and has also said that we are called to do good works (Eph. 2: 8-10, Romans 12:4-8, Matthew 25:14-30).

“Forging ahead without seeking God or sitting back and doing nothing can stem from fear or a lack of faith. However, setting goals and consulting with Him shows that you trust Him and believe that He is able to lead you while you are moving forward.”  Shauna Schutte from Focus on the Family

 

BONUS:   THE CHISEL by The Skit Guys   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AhfUzodLRvk

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Set one goal each day.  Maybe it is to talk to one new person about your desired END.  YOU MUST open up and begin to talk.  YOU are NOT to do this alone.  Ask God for divine inspiration.  Share with others and glean their wisdom and knowledge.  Take a step today!

 

PRAYER:  Father, You created me to do good things.  Show me.  Encourage me.  Guide me to Your END for my life.  Amen.

Week 5 Day 4 – Count the Benefit

7Each of you should give whatever you have decided. You shouldn’t be sorry that you gave or feel forced to give, since God loves a cheerful giver. 8Besides, God will give you his constantly overflowing kindness. Then, when you always have everything you need, you can do more and more good things.

 

9Scripture says, “The righteous person gives freely to the poor. His righteousness continues forever.”

 

10God gives seed to the farmer and food to those who need to eat. God will also give you seed and multiply it. In your lives he will increase the things you do that have his approval. 11God will make you rich enough so that you can always be generous. Your generosity will produce thanksgiving to God because of us. 12What you do to serve others not only provides for the needs of God’s people, but also produces more and more prayers of thanksgiving to God. 13You will honor God through this genuine act of service because of your commitment to spread the Good News of Christ and because of your generosity in sharing with them and everyone else. 14With deep affection they will pray for you because of the extreme kindness that God has shown you. 15I thank God for his gift that words cannot describe.  2 Corinthians 9:7-15

 

The DIG:  Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary

 

9:6-15 Money bestowed in charity, may to the carnal mind seem thrown away, but when given from proper principles, it is seed sown, from which a valuable increase may be expected. It should be given carefully. Works of charity, like other good works, should be done with thought and design. Due thought, as to our circumstances, and those we are about to relieve, will direct our gifts for charitable uses. Help should be given freely, be it more or less; not grudgingly, but cheerfully. While some scatter, and yet increase; others withhold more than is meet, and it tends to poverty. If we had more faith and love, we should waste less on ourselves, and sow more in hope of a plentiful increase. Can a man lose by doing that with which God is pleased? He is able to make all grace abound towards us, and to abound in us; to give a large increase of spiritual and of temporal good things. He can make us to have enough in all things; and to be content with what we have. God gives not only enough for ourselves, but that also wherewith we may supply the wants of others, and this should be as seed to be sown. We must show the reality of our subjection to the gospel, by works of charity. This will be for the credit of our profession, and to the praise and glory of God. Let us endeavour to copy the example of Christ, being unwearied in doing good, and deeming it more blessed to give than to receive. Blessed be God for the unspeakable gift of his grace, whereby he enables and inclines some of his people to bestow upon others, and others to be grateful for it; and blessed be his glorious name to all eternity, for Jesus Christ, that inestimable gift of his love, through whom this and every other good thing, pertaining to life and godliness, are freely given unto us, beyond all expression, measure, or bounds.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Write who will benefit from you achieving your desired END.  How will they benefit?

How will it change the lives of others?  How will fulfillment of this goal benefit you, others, God?

 

PRAYER:  Father show me Your purpose for my life.  Give me eyes to see the people You have put in my life to enable me to succeed and to whom I am to be a blessing.  Let me be like You, be Your hands and feet. Amen.

Week 5 Day 3 – How Will it Change Your Life?

The one who had gone down also went up above all the heavens so that he fills everything. 11He also gave apostles, prophets, missionaries, as well as pastors and teachers as gifts [to his church]. 12Their purpose is to prepare God’s people to serve and to build up the body of Christ. 13This is to continue until all of us are united in our faith and in our knowledge about God’s Son, until we become mature, until we measure up to Christ, who is the standard.  Ephesians 4:10-13

 

Dr. Gary Whetstone passionately spoke about who we are in Christ during an interview.  “If only we KNEW who lives in us, dwells in us, all doubt and fear would be eliminated.  Perfect love casts out fear.  We MUST KNOW God!  We MUST seek Him with our whole heart.  We are to do mighty exploits in His name.  We are to do greater things than Jesus.  We MUST KNOW this!”

 

He told of having no fear in 10 years.  “Perfect love casts out fear.”

He spoke of signs and wonders and no limitations.

He spoke of freedom from worry over finances and what other people think.

He bowed to ONLY God.

He served ONLY God.

He lives as God designed each of us to live.

 

For the first time in my life I saw a physical example of the God life in mature form.  I saw that it was possible.

 

I also saw how far I have to go.  And it would be easy to do the worldly thing and began to put myself down.  But I can’t and neither can you.  Look how far you have come by the grace of God.  Look at verse 10 again:  “….he fills everything.”  This is God’s work.  Let Him.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  In this moment simply yield to the Holy Spirit.  Quit fighting.  Cease striving.  Yield.  Hand Him the reins of your life.

 

PRAYER:  “Fill me Lord with Your fullness.   Let me come into full knowledge of You Jesus.  Grow me into maturity until I measure up to Christ who is my Standard.”  Amen.

 

POSTSCRIPT:  As I prepared to send this today, the Holy Spirit brought to mind ‘examples’ and ‘mentors.’  Jesus mentored the twelve before leaving them to continue His work.  I felt as if the Holy Spirit was reminding me we all need someone to follow.  Begin looking for someone who is doing or has done what you want to do.  This can be a person you can contact by phone or in person, from a book they’ve written or a class or program they offer.  It is much easier to follow someone who has already gone where you desire to go.

Which is easier:  to have someone tell you how to get to a new place or have them take you there directly?

God has already put people in place to take you to the place He has designed for you to go.  Ask the Holy Spirit to help you recognize who that person(s) is.

Week 5 Day 2 – What Will You Gain?

Now faith is the conviction concerning those things that are in hope, as if it were these things in action, and the revelation of those things that are unseen; 2And by this there was a testimony concerning the ancients.

3For by faith we understand that the worlds were fashioned by the word of God, and these things that are seen came into being out of those things which are unseen. Hebrews 11:1-3

 

Think about your END.  Really think about it.  Envision it in your mind.  See the details, the colors, the sounds, the smells and the textures around you.  Just give your time to meditate on your END.  Bring it to life in your imagination.  See it.  Own it.  Watch it.  Enjoy it.

 

Until you can see it and own it in your head, you will never own it in your heart.  The eyes are the gateway to the soul (mind, will and emotions).  The soul must open to the heart (our heart is the location of the Spirit of God and our spirit) where the power of creation lies.

 

Why is this important?  Because it is here where we really begin to see all that we gain.  We see how it feels.  We taste it.  We hear it. It becomes REAL.  And once it is REAL it has to materialize.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Feel it.  See it.  Do this over and over until it is REAL.

 

PRAYER:  Loving Father, give me eyes to see what You see.  Remove the scales from my eyes.  I need to see as You see for then my faith will have substance on which I can stand.  Oh, God my God, give me faith.  Give me eyes that I may follow only You to my pre-destined end.  Amen.

Week 5 – How Will it Feel? What is the Cost?

This week we build upon what we touched upon last week day2:  we will count the cost.  These are some of the questions we will address this week.

What will you gain?  How will it change your life?  How will it change the lives of others?  How will fulfillment of this goal benefit you, others, God?

What will it cost you if fail to reach your goal?  What will it cost your family?  What will it cost God and His Kingdom?

 

27″Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. 28″For which one of you, when he wants to build a tower, does not first sit down and calculate the cost to see if he has enough to complete it? 29″Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who observe it begin to ridicule him,  30saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’  Luke 14:17-30

 

WEEK 5 DAY 1

 

“For what does a person benefit if he gains the whole world and lacks his soul? Or what will a person give to regain his soul?  Matthew 16:26

 

Do you have any idea what it will cost you if you deny your God-given purpose in this life?  Our souls are our minds – the way we think, our emotions – what we feel, and our wills – what we purpose to do.  Think of all the people who need medication (prescription medicine, illegal drugs, alcohol, food, manipulation of others) in order to get through their day. Why?  Because they have forfeited their souls to the world’s agenda for them rather than stand for God’s purpose and design for their life.  They feel it deep down inside.  They KNOW they have betrayed themselves.  They feel trapped and hopeless.  They see no way out.

 

The good news is God is always reaching down to lift us out of the pit which we have dug for ourselves.  God is always here to help.  The time is always NOW.

 

THE DIG:  Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary

 

16:24-28 A true disciple of Christ is one that does follow him in duty, and shall follow him to glory. He is one that walks in the same way Christ walked in, is led by his Spirit, and treads in his steps, whithersoever he goes. Let him deny himself. If self-denial be a hard lesson, it is no more than what our Master learned and practiced, to redeem us, and to teach us. Let him take up his cross. The cross is here put for every trouble that befalls us. We are apt to think we could bear another’s cross better than our own; but that is best which is appointed us, and we ought to make the best of it. We must not by our rashness and folly pull crosses down upon our own heads, but must take them up when they are in our way. If any man will have the name and credit of a disciple, let him follow Christ in the work and duty of a disciple. If all worldly things are worthless when compared with the life of the body, how forcible the same argument with respect to the soul and its state of never-ending happiness or misery! Thousands lose their souls for the most trifling gain, or the most worthless indulgence, nay, often from mere sloth and negligence. Whatever is the object for which men forsake Christ, that is the price at which Satan buys their souls. Yet one soul is worth more than all the world. This is Christ’s judgment upon the matter; he knew the price of souls, for he redeemed them; nor would he underrate the world, for he made it. The dying transgressor cannot purchase one hour’s respite to seek mercy for his perishing soul. Let us then learn rightly to value our souls, and Christ as the only Saviour of them.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Cry out for help.  Repent of having believed the lies of the enemy and followed the world’s ways.  Forgive yourself.  Receive God’s forgiveness.  Wash away the guilt and condemnation for they have no place in the Kingdom of our KING.  Leave it all in the rut.

1Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.…Romans 8:1-2

Again state your desired end aloud.  Say it over and over until you really connect with it.

 

Maybe like me, you need to be reminded of God’s purpose for us.

Matthew 25:34  “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.

Romans 8:29  For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

Ephesians 1:4  For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.

 

PRAYER:  Holy Father, my Lord and King, I come today realizing I have blindly followed the voice of the world.  It is loud and persuasive.  I felt pushed by others following it.  But today I stop to repent.  I wait to hear Your voice, deep inside, soft and loving.  Open the ears of my heart to hear you clearly.  Guide me my God.  Amen.

Week 4 Day 7 – Gain Consistent Desire

For the sake of your word and consistent with your desire, you have done all of these great things, informing your servant. 2 Samuel 7:21

 

For the sake of your word……..    God’s word is more solid than rock.  He speaks.  He sees.  We learned this in Genesis chapter 1.  We are created in God’s image.  Our words create also.  They are to be rock solid also.  We honor ourselves and God when we say what we mean and mean what we say.  Something deep within cringes when we say something while knowing we do intend to do something different.  A part of us is corrupted because we betray who we are at the core of our spiritual being.

 

What have you said about your determined END?  Did you say it in the heat of emotion, hoping to make it come to pass?  This is what happens with most New Year’s Resolutions.  Now the emotion has fizzled and you feel like quitting.  We must get back to ‘for the sake of your word’ to maintain desire.

 

……consistent with your desire, you have done all of these things,……   We will only continue toward our desired END consistent with our desire.  God did all these things consistent with His desire to restore us to Himself.  Jesus went to the cross, enduring the most painful death imaginable consistent because of His desire to save us.  DESIRE is paramount to reaching the end.  It must be fed daily just like our physical bodies.  We must maintain our bodies which are our vehicles through life.  DESIRE is the vehicle which will carry us to our determined END.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Feed your desire daily.  Determine a time to do this each day.  If possible include it with another action you do daily – brushing your teeth, eating meals, meditation.

 

PRAYER:  Holy Father, You do everything consistent with your desire.  I am created in Your image.  Bring me back to the point where I ONLY do what is consistent with the desire you placed within me.  To Your glory!  Amen.

 

Week 4 Day 6

Tony Robbins says there are 6 basic needs to live fully as a human being .

The Six Human Needs

1. Certainty: assurance you can avoid pain and gain pleasure

2. Uncertainty/Variety: the need for the unknown, change, new stimuli

3. Significance: feeling unique, important, special or needed

4. Connection/Love: a strong feeling of closeness or union with someone or something

5. Growth: an expansion of capacity, capability or understanding

6. Contribution: a sense of service and focus on helping, giving to and supporting others

 

All decisions in our lives are made based on what we believe will meet the need.  But what if we were created with these needs built into us as a way of driving us to connect with God?  After all He knit us together in our mother’s wombs.  He knew us before He formed us.  What if He created us to need Him, to be fulfilled and sustained by Him so we may enjoy life to the max?  I believe God did just that.  He designed us with needs to fit His strengths.  Think of yourself as a unique puzzle piece.  You are designed to fit in one place only in that puzzle.  Every void place is a place of need – need for God.  So let’s look at the needs of every human being and how God fills that need perfectly.

 

1st:  need is for Certainty; the assurance we can avoid pain and gain pleasure.  We need to feel safe.

Deuteronomy 33:27

The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. He will drive out your enemies before you, saying, ‘Destroy them!’

2 Samuel 22:2

He said: “The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;

Psalm 7:6

Arise, LORD, in your anger; rise up against the rage of my enemies. Awake, my God; decree justice.

Psalm 18:2

The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

Psalm 31:2

Turn your ear to me, come quickly to my rescue; be my rock of refuge, a strong fortress to save me.

Psalm 31:3

Since you are my rock and my fortress, for the sake of your name lead and guide me.

Psalm 42:8

By day the LORD directs his love, at night his song is with me– a prayer to the God of my life.

 

2:  VARIETY – the need for the unknown, change, new stimuli

Isaiah 42:16

I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them.

Romans 12:2  New Living Translation

Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.

2 Corinthians 3:18  And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.

 

3:  SIGNIFICANCE  – feeling unique, important, special or needed

Ephesians 2:10  For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

 

4:  LOVE / CONNECTION  a strong feeling of closeness or union with someone or something

John 17:23  I am in them and you are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me.

 

5. Growth: an expansion of capacity, capability or understanding

Proverbs 4:5  Acquire wisdom! Acquire understanding! Do not forget nor turn away from the words of my mouth.

 

6. Contribution: a sense of service and focus on helping, giving to and supporting others

I Peter 4: 9  Be hospitable to one another without complaint. 10  As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. 11  Whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen

 

POINT OF ACTION:  How does your END, your DESIRE meets these needs?  Identify them to solidify your desire.  It will carry you through to the END.

 

PRAYER:  Father God, thank you for creating me with a need for You.  Let me cast aside all false expectations and wrong thoughts that I may pursue You totally.  Piece me together with You that I may glorify You in all my ways.  Amen.

Week 4 Day 5 – The Watching One

Psalm 37:3-7 below in the Institute for Scripture Research.  It contains the Hebrew letters for Yahweh which is God’s personal and intimate name.

3Trust in יהוה, and do good; Dwell in the earth, and feed on steadfastness.

4And delight yourself in יהוה, And let Him give you the desires of your heart.

5Commit your way to יהוה, And trust in Him, and He does it.

6And He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light, And your right-ruling as midday.

7Rest in יהוה, and wait patiently for Him;

 

יהוה Surprised by God!  Look at the name of God here in Hebrew.  I happened to glance at it with blurry eyes this morning and was surprised by what I saw.  In modern American we use all kinds of letters and punctuation to create smiley faces and express emotion in our written communication.  We get that from God.  Today I saw His eyes.  Look at His Name again.  The pupils would be the marks on the lower left of each eye and the brows the arches to the right with the bridge of the nose in the center.  I knew immediately God was showing me in His name that He WATCHES over us.  How much would it change what we did if we knew God was always watching, seeing and knowing EVERYTHING that concerns us?

 

Maybe the thought comes, “I already know this.”  I did too.  But to see it in scripture in this manner today made it go from my head to my spirit.  God sees.  He knows.

 

Maybe this will help.  It compares God faith with blind faith.

True Faith comes from the heart or spirit, not the head.

It comes from Love, not fear.

It comes from wisdom (knowing that you know) instead of knowledge.

 

Faith that comes from the head is blind faith because it comes from knowledge, false beliefs, from fear.

Blind faith leads to fanaticism and dogmatism (inflexibility, strickness, rigidness).  This explains all the religious was, all the fear that other people don’t believe what we believe.

Blind faith is a faith we have to defend and impose on other people in order to feel validated and safe.

 

True faith will propel us into action.  It becomes an unquenchable desire, a fire that changes things.  The fire of desire will purify us and make us pure gold.  Destructive fire will consume our life dreams and desires and bend us out of shape.  Think of the image of metal that has been in a fire.  It gets twisted and mangled.  It becomes useless.  Now think of metal in the hands of a blacksmith.  The same intensity of fire (like the destructive) takes the metal to a pliable, moldable material.  In this state the blacksmith is able to make the raw iron into beautiful ornamental and structural components for a stair rail.  His imagination is the limit.

 

If faith is only in our heads, it is blind and destructive.  But when we open to the faith of God in our spirits, NOTHING will stop us.  Here we know that God is watching.  God is overseeing.  God will do it.

5Commit your way to יהוה, And trust in Him, and He does it.

Commit your way to the Watching One and trust – fully recline and rest – in Him, and He does it!  POINT OF ACTION

 

PRAYER:  Holy Father, Watching One, thank You for watching over me.  Enlighten the eyes of my heart to see you and to KNOW You that I may serve You in greater measure every day.  Amen.

Week 4 Day 4 – Desires of Your Heart

4Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart. 5Commit your way to the LORD, Trust also in Him, and He will do it.  Psalm 37:4-5

 

Today the Dig says it best.

The DIG:  Delight thyself also in the Lord. Draw from communion with God all that inward intensity of joy which it is capable of giving. And he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. God will then grant thee all thy desires, and make thee perfectly happy.

 

Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible

Delight thyself also in the Lord,…. In the persons in God, Father, Son, and Spirit; in the perfections of God, his power, goodness, faithfulness, wisdom, love, grace, and mercy; in his works of creation, providence, and redemption; in his word, his Gospel, the truths and ordinances of it; in his house, and the worship of it; and in his people, the excellent in the earth, in whom was all the delight of the psalmist; and each of these afford a field of delight and pleasure, to attend unto, contemplate, and meditate upon;

 

and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart; such as are according to the will of God, and for the good of his people; such as relate to communion with him, and to the communication of more grace from him, and to the enjoyment of eternal glory.

 

There is no room for fretting if we remember that God is ours, but there is every incentive to sacred enjoyment of the most elevated and ecstatic kind. Every name, attribute, word, or deed of Jehovah, should be delightful to us, and in meditating thereon our soul should be as glad as is the epicure who feeds delicately with a profound relish for his dainties. “And he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.” A pleasant duty is here rewarded with another pleasure. Men who delight in God desire or ask for nothing but what will please God.; hence it is safe to give them carte blanche. Their will is subdued to God’s will, and now they may have what they will. Our innermost desires are here meant, not our casual wishes; there are many things which nature might desire which grace would never permit us to ask for; these deep, prayerful, asking desires are those to which the promise is made.

POINT OF ACTION:  Meditate upon the goodness of God to you.  What pleasures do you enjoy?  Think of those activities that make you feel most alive and energized.  Remember those times you KNEW you were doing exactly what you are created to do.  Ask the Holy Spirit to bring them to you memory.  Record them with as much detail as possible.

PRAYER:  Father, you know me.  You know my thoughts before I think them.  Show me today what You designed me to do in this life.  Reveal the desires of my heart according to Your design.  Set me on the right course to my best END.  In Jesus’ precious name I ask.  Amen.

Week 4 Day 3 – Compelled

And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem without knowing what will happen to me there,  Acts 20:22

 

St. Paul felt himself compelled to go to Jerusalem. A sense of absolute necessity was upon him, and he did not feel himself a free agent to go anywhere else.  He was resolved and determined in his own mind, within himself, he purposed in his spirit to go to Jerusalem, even if harm awaited him.  Paul was compelled:  a vehement desire that moves one to action.

 

Our desired END must be compelling.  We MUST KNOW this MUST be fulfilled.  Why?  Because emotions move us.  Emotion Evokes MOTION.  Our emotions ALWAYS move us to make decisions and take actions.

 

I remember vividly the day God revealed to me I made 99% of my decisions based on fear.  “What if.” “What will people think?”  “What if the money doesn’t come in?”  “What if I fail?”  I let fear sideline me, immobilize me from taking positive action and propel me to take negative action.  At that moment I realized who I truly worshipped.  I worshipped God with my lips but my actions were compelled and determined by fear rather than faith.  My works and actions revealed who I truly worshipped was the Enemy.  I allowed him to “steal, kill and destroy” (John 10:10) my life and God’s purpose for me. I had serious repentance to do.  Repentance means to change the way you think and act.  True repentance COMPELS us to take the right action.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to you the times and places of your day when you are compelled by fear rather than faith.  Repent.  Take a positive action.  This energizes and releases faith.  COMMIT to do it, however awkward, however scary, however silly make that change immediately.  “He who hesitates is lost” can apply here.  God loves immediate response and answer to His direction.  Anything less is sin.

 

PRAYER:  Holy Father, guide me today.  Show me Your way.  Holy Spirit give me the UNCTION to move quickly in the new direction.  In Jesus Holy Name and through the life giving power of His blood I pray.  Amen.

Week 4 Day 2 – The Cost of Desire

27″Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. 28″For which one of you, when he wants to build a tower, does not first sit down and calculate the cost to see if he has enough to complete it? 29″Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who observe it begin to ridicule him,  30saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’  Luke 14:17-30

 

In order to reach the End we must sustain movement toward it.  People use many different words to encourage us to keep moving.  Words like ‘motivation,’ ‘will power,’ stick-to-it-ivenss and ‘you can do it.’  But we have all probably used those words with ourselves and with others.  And if you are like me, you have still failed resolutions littering your past.

 

The reason?  Pain.  We do everything within our power to circumvent pain.  Our brains will ALWAYS, ALWAYS take the route it associates with more pleasure over one it sees as painful.  Even if we KNOW the new way is better for us and for others, our brains will guide us in what has been programmed as more pleasure.  That is why change requires much effort.  It pushes us out of our comfort zones.  Those comfort zones become ruts.  Those ruts become the open graves of dreams and purpose.   We are in essence digging the grave for the very thing we KNOW we are to be doing.  And if we continue long enough, we give up hope.  The dream dies and a part of us dies with it.

 

But here is your ladder out of the rut.  Count the cost.  Take this moment to think about what it is costing you.  Record it in your journal (if you are using one).  Think about what it is costing others:  what benefit are they being deprived of in their lives; what joy are you denying them as you trudge along in your rut?  When we forfeit our dreams and our purposes other people continue to suffer because we bury our knowledge, our idea, our gifts and talents.  Feel the pain.  Really feel the intensity of the pain, both yours and theirs.

 

Now think of what it is costing God and His Kingdom?  He created you for this time and this place to do what ONLY YOU can do.  The world has lied to us and told us that if we don’t do it, God will get someone else.  LIE!  God creates each of as unique beings specifically designed for a specific purpose.  ONLY we can fulfill it.  God does unique and purposeful rather than duplicate and ‘if needed.’  You must do it for ONLY you can do it.  Maybe God will have others doing similar work and ministry but your part in it can ONLY be filled and completed by you.

 

What does it cost your Jesus if you bury your purpose?

It still causes me tears to think of what it costs Jesus and others on a daily basis as I allow fear to paralyze me or stop me for pursuing my purpose.

People live separated from the knowledge of how much God loves them.

They remain captive to the enemy – prisoners of war who are denied basic needs.

They are broken hearted by people and circumstances.

Hurting people hurt other people.  The cycle continues and grows.

They are tormented by fear.

The enemy takes the lives of some!

God’s family is decreased rather than increased.

The Lord God is denied worship and joy and honor.

I build the enemy’s kingdom rather than God’s.  Oh dear God, what have I done?!!!!!!

It hurts me to the core as I realize how much I bow to fear and inferiority rather than to Him.  I remember the scene of Jesus on the cross in the movie ‘The Passion of the Christ’ and my heart hurts.  I MUST do this.  I MUST fulfill my purpose.  I MUST do all for Him at WHATEVER the cost to me.  I MUST step through the fear into FAITH!!!!

 

It cost my Lord His life.  I choose to give Him mine.

 

And the amazing part of this is:  when I fulfill my desire and my purpose, I bless and please Him but I am blessed and amazed and fulfilled beyond my wildest dream.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Stop digging the grave for the Evil One.  PURSUE your dream, your END, your God purpose.  Do one thing right now, however small, toward your dream.  Write one word.  Walk the length of your home.  Eat an apple rather than a cookie.  Sing a song unto God.  Research an online program.  Do it now.  Commit to do 1 thing every day.  That’s all, 1 thing every day.  When we take that step of faith, God opens doors.  Momentum builds.  Angels come to assist.  You are climbing one rung of the ladder out of your grave with each step.

 

PRAYER:  Holy Father, forgive me for failing, for choosing to kneel to fear rather than to You.  Today, I ask Your forgiveness.  Today I forgive myself for every time I have submitted to any thought or feeling opposite of You.  I rebuke fear.  I evict that evil spirit from my mind and my heart and every cell of my body.  Cleanse me O Lord.  Fill me anew with Your Spirit and Your Power.  Fill every cell of my body with Your Spirit until I am filled with You.  Be my Guide and reminder Holy Spirit.  To God Be The Glory!  Amen.

Week 4 Gain Consistent Desire

For the sake of your word and consistent with your desire, you have done all of these great things, informing your servant. 2 Samuel 7:21

David desired to build a house for God.  Here we will see how we build upon our words written on paper to gain consistent desire to obtain our goals.

 

Week 4:  Day 1

2 Samuel 7:  1Now it came about when the king lived in his house, and the LORD had given him rest on every side from all his enemies, 2that the king said to Nathan the prophet, “See now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwells within tent curtains.” 3Nathan said to the king, “Go, do all that is in your mind, for the LORD is with you.”

Here David is instructed to what all that is in his mind.  He purposed to do something good for God.

Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary  7:1-3 David being at rest in his palace, considered how he might best employ his leisure and prosperity in the service of God. He formed a design to build a temple for the ark. Nathan here did not speak as a prophet, but as a godly man, encouraging David by his private judgment. We ought to do all we can to encourage and promote the good purposes and designs of others, and, as we have opportunity, to forward a good work.

      4But in the same night the word of the LORD came to Nathan, saying, 5“Go and say to My servant David, ‘Thus says the LORD, “Are you the one who should build Me a house to dwell in? 6“For I have not dwelt in a house since the day I brought up the sons of Israel from Egypt, even to this day; but I have been moving about in a tent, even in a tabernacle. 7“Wherever I have gone with all the sons of Israel, did I speak a word with one of the tribes of Israel, which I commanded to shepherd My people Israel, saying, ‘Why have you not built Me a house of cedar?’”’

8“Now therefore, thus you shall say to My servant David, ‘Thus says the LORD of hosts, “I took you from the pasture, from following the sheep, to be ruler over My people Israel. 9“I have been with you wherever you have gone and have cut off all your enemies from before you; and I will make you a great name, like the names of the great men who are on the earth. 10“I will also appoint a place for My people Israel and will plant them, that they may live in their own place and not be disturbed again, nor will the wicked afflict them any more as formerly, 11even from the day that I commanded judges to be over My people Israel; and I will give you rest from all your enemies. The LORD also declares to you that the LORD will make a house for you. 12“When your days are complete and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your descendant after you, who will come forth from you, and I will establish his kingdom. 13“He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. 14“I will be a father to him and he will be a son to Me; when he commits iniquity, I will correct him with the rod of men and the strokes of the sons of men, 15but My lovingkindness shall not depart from him, as I took it away from Saul, whom I removed from before you. 16“Your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever; your throne shall be established forever.”’” 17In accordance with all these words and all this vision, so Nathan spoke to David.

THE DIG:  Pulpit Commentary:  Jehovah takes him from the sheepcote; Hebrew, “the meadow” (see Psalm 78:70). It was in the meadows, the Naioth, round Ramah, that Samuel had gathered the young men of Israel to study their ancient records, and raise their country to a sense of its high calling. In those meadows David had been formed for his high vocation; but he had returned from them to Bethlehem, to feed his father’s sheep. And now, “from following the ewes that gave suck,” Jehovah takes him to be “his servant,” a word of high dignity, applied to but few persons in the Old Testament. It signifies the prime minister, or vicegerent of Jehovah, as the theocratic king, and is the special title of Moses among God’s people, and, among the heathen, of Nebuchadnezzar, as one summoned to do a great work for God. But it is in the last twenty-seven chapters of Isaiah that the title reaches its full grandeur. For there, first of all, Israel is called Jehovah’s servant, because it was Israel’s office to be the witness for the oneness of God amidst the debasing polytheism of all the nations round. And then, finally, the servant is Messiah, as being the personal Representative of God upon earth. The title is now given to David as the type of Christ’s kingly office, and also as the sweet singer, who added a new service to the worship of God, and made it more spiritual, and more like the service of angels round God’s throne.

POINT OF ACTION:  How do you see yourself?  Recently I saw myself as ‘an ant’ and described myself as just a poor farm girl from NC.  Our image versus God’s image of us has been the focus of so many conversations over the past week.  No matter how we see ourselves, God knows our potential.  Hallelujah!!!  He does not allow our past to determine our future.  And neither should we.

Begin to record the things God has done for you in the past.  It will give you a great picture of your future.  It will give you greater desire to bless Him with your future.

David’s Prayer is our prayer today:

18Then David the king went in and sat before the LORD, and he said, “Who am I, O Lord GOD, and what is my house, that You have brought me this far? 19“And yet this was insignificant in Your eyes, O Lord GOD, for You have spoken also of the house of Your servant concerning the distant future. And this is the custom of man, O Lord GOD. 20“Again what more can David say to You? For You know Your servant, O Lord GOD! 21“For the sake of Your word, and according to Your own heart (desire), You have done all this greatness to let Your servant know. 22“For this reason You are great, O Lord GOD; for there is none like You, and there is no God besides You, according to all that we have heard with our ears. 23“And what one nation on the earth is like Your people Israel, whom God went to redeem for Himself as a people and to make a name for Himself, and to do a great thing for You and awesome things for Your land, before Your people whom You have redeemed for Yourself from Egypt, from nations and their gods? 24“For You have established for Yourself Your people Israel as Your own people forever, and You, O LORD, have become their God. 25“Now therefore, O LORD God, the word that You have spoken concerning Your servant and his house, confirm it forever, and do as You have spoken, 26that Your name may be magnified forever, by saying, ‘The LORD of hosts is God over Israel’; and may the house of Your servant David be established before You. 27“For You, O LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, have made a revelation to Your servant, saying, ‘I will build you a house’; therefore Your servant has found courage to pray this prayer to You. 28“Now, O Lord GOD, You are God, and Your words are truth, and You have promised this good thing to Your servant. 29“Now therefore, may it please You to bless the house of Your servant, that it may continue forever before You. For You, O Lord GOD, have spoken; and with Your blessing may the house of Your servant be blessed forever.”27“Lord Almighty, God of Israel, you have revealed this to your servant, saying, ‘I will build a house for you.’ So your servant has found courage to pray this prayer to you.28Sovereign Lord, you are God! Your covenant is trustworthy, and you have promised these good things to your servant.29Now be pleased to bless the house of your servant, that it may continue forever in your sight; for you, Sovereign Lord, have spoken, and with your blessing the house of your servant will be blessed forever.”

 

 

Week 3 Day 7 – Failure is not an Option

…7″Only be strong and very courageous; be careful to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may have success wherever you go. 8″This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success. 9“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:7-9

 

Why do we delay?  Why do we doubt?

It is because we are consumed with ourselves, our misery and our failures.  We focus on the fear, the past rather than looking up to God.

 

THE DIG:  Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible

 

Have not I commanded thee?…. The above things, to go over Jordan with the people into the land of Canaan, and to observe the law of Moses in all things, and to be of good courage, which is again repeated; consider who it is that has given these orders and instructions, the great Jehovah, the everlasting I AM, who is faithful to his promises, and able to perform. The consideration of which would serve to animate him to the work he was called unto, to encourage his faith in God, to engage in his service cheerfully and readily:

 

be strong, and of a good courage; See Gill on Joshua 1:6; See Gill on Joshua 1:7.

 

be not afraid, nor be thou dismayed; at his enemies, numerous and powerful, nor discouraged at anything in himself, any unfitness for such service, as he might think, or at any difficulties he might fear from the people he had the government of, and was to lead on; it was enough that the divine Presence was promised him, and which is repeated:

 

POINT OF ACTION:  We must change positions!  We must change our physical position in order to change our mental position.  Do this exercise.

Notice how you are feeling.  Really identify it.  Now look at how you are sitting or standing.

Stand up or sit up straight.  Lift your head and look forward or up.  Square your shoulders.  Take a deep breath.  Put a big smile on your face.  How do you feel?

Maintain this physical position.

Now feel depressed.  Keep holding your head and chin high, shoulders back, smile on your face.  Really try to feel depressed while maintaining the smile and strong position.

Depression can only come when we slump, when we drop our heads, when we fold in on ourselves.

Now think of a time when you were super happy and confident.  Remember how you looked and stood and acted.  Was it similar to the above head up/chin high/big smile stature?

To change your feelings, change your physical position.  Go back and forth between the two body positions.  Slump and feel sad.  Jerk back into the straight back head up smiling position immediately!

Repeat the two more and more quickly.

The point of this exercise is to prove YOU have the power to be strong and courageous!  God is with you.  No longer are you a slave to your feelings.  Whatever you have to overcome, change your position.  You can ALWAYS make yourself feel good, feel strong and feel courageous by changing your physical position.

 

PRAYER:  Loving God, You are with me!  Make me mindFULL of Your Presence with me every moment of my day.  Flame the fire of desire to be who You created me to be.  Strengthen my courage.  I will step through the fear into faith.  In the name of Jesus my strength and my power, amen.

Week 3 Day 6 – Book of the Law

8″This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success. Joshua 1:8

 

Success and being prosperous comes because we keep the book of the law in our mouth.  Well, what is the book of the law?  We must go back to Joshua’s day to find the answer.

 

At this point in history there were only the 5 books written by Moses on Mt. Sinai.  Much of this was received during the 40 days on the mountain with God.  Moses carried the two tablets with the 10 commandments written by the finger of God upon them.  The 5 books:  Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy, are the first 5 books of the Bible.  The word “Deuteronomy” means “repetition of the law.”  Meditation is a repetition of the law.

 

Joshua 1:8 is commands Joshua to keep the book of Deuteronomy in his mouth by repetition.  Jesus Christ quoted Deuteronomy more than any of the entire Old Testament.  If Jesus and Joshua ‘meditated’ on Deuteronomy then it is imperative that we do so.

 

So why the big deal about the book of Deuteronomy?  It tells us how to fulfill the Great Commandment which is:  Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’  This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’  All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”  Matthew 22:37-40.  Jesus is quoting Deuteronomy 6:5 for the 1st commandment and Leviticus19:18 for the second.

 

All of Deuteronomy tells us how to love God, love others and how to love ourselves.  Each and every law in this book describes in detail how God wants to be loved and worshiped, how He wants us to love and treat others and how to love and treat ourselves.  Once we incorporate God’s ways of love into our lives, success and prosperity will follow because ‘love never fails.’ (I Corinthians 13:13)

 

THE DIG:  Martin Luther says “the book of Deuteronomy is an exposition on the 10 Commandments.  Chapters 6-18 apply the first 4 commandments.  They explain what it means for God’s people to love Him.  These chapters are about worship, keeping from idols, etc.  Chapters 19-26 apply the last 6 commandments.  They explain what it means to love your neighbor as yourself – unsolved murders, violations of marriage, weights and measures in the market place and so on.  Chapters 27-34 set out the blessings that lie on the path of obedience to these commands and the curses that lie on the path of disobedience.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Begin to read some of Deuteronomy each week or each day.  Meditate on it until you own it.  This is not a ‘get it done’ exercise.  It is a life principle.  Learn how to love God according to what He desires.  Otherwise if we love Him by singing the songs we like and the worship style we like then it is like a husband giving a wife a new suit for him as a gift to her.  Make Deuteronomy the foundation of how to live from now on.  As we learn we must align our lives with His ways.  Then we will be successful and prosperous!

 

PRAYER:  Father, we come before You.  Forgive us for loving and worshiping you according to our will and way.  Holy Spirit, guide us into all truth that we may truly honor our Lord, our God, our King!  In Jesus name, amen.

Week 3 Day 5

(Note:  A typo was discovered in yesterday’s writing.  Mind was used where MOUTH should have been used.  “God ensures success if we keep His word in our mouth that it may resound throughout our body and life.)

 

He established them so they would endure; he issued a decree that will not be revoked. Psalm 148:6

 

It is time to decree your END.  Tell someone.  Maybe you are still hesitant to speak about it to someone else.  Do like Billy Graham before his ministry began.  Preach or speak to the stumps and rocks of the fields.  Speak to the animals.  I had the privilege of being mentored by Aliss Cresswell on the miraculous.  She practiced raising a dead woodpecker before she began decreeing life to dead people.

 

THE DIG:  Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary

148:1-6 We, in this dark and sinful world, know little of the heavenly world of light. But we know that there is above us a world of blessed angels. They are always praising God, therefore the psalmist shows his desire that God may be praised in the best manner; also we show that we have communion with spirits above, who are still praising him. The heavens, with all contained in them, declare the glory of God. They call on us, that both by word and deed, we glorify with them the Creator and Redeemer of the universe.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Decree somewhere or to someone.

 

PRAYER:  Father give me courage.  Dispel my doubt.  In Jesus Name, Amen.

Week 3 Day 4 – The Key

…7″Only be strong and very courageous; be careful to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may have success wherever you go. 8″This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success. 9″Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:7-9

 

Here is THE key.  Count the number of times ‘you’ and ‘your’ is used in verse 8.  God provides the way but ALWAYS leaves the choice to us.  We have a part.  God often says, ‘if you do this then I’ll do that.’  We hold the key to success and prosperity by our obedience.  Obedience always brings blessings.  God ensures success if we keep His word in our mind that it may resound throughout our body and life. ONLY God’s word brings effective, enduring change in our lives.  Meditate on it day and night.  Let it be the last words on your lips at night and it will be the first thought in morning as you practice it.

 

THE DIG:  Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible

This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth,…. He was often to read it, frequently repeat it, and speak of it, to refresh his own memory with it, and the memory of those about him. Jarchi restrains it to the book of Deuteronomy now before him:

 

but thou shalt meditate therein day and night; whenever he had any leisure from the important business of his office, whether by day or night, see Psalm 1:2,

 

that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein; which frequent speaking of it, and constant meditation on it, would lead unto:

 

for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success; in his wars with the Canaanites.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Pick one verse to meditate on until it ‘bubbles’ up in you…..until it births something new and exciting.  If it is only one verse for a month or 3 months keep meditating, muttering, speaking and praying it until it becomes a living essence inside of you.  Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you to the verse you need most.  “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all men liberally, and upbraids not; and it shall be given to him.”  James 1:5

 

PRAYER:  Father, I desire to be successful and prosperous in Your eyes and in Your ways.  Grant me wisdom.  Instill Your word in my heart as I meditate upon it day and night.  Thank You for answering.  In Jesus’

Week 3 Day 3 – Bubble

“My heart hath indited a good thing, I am telling my works to a king, My tongue is the pen of a speedy writer.”  Psalm 45:1b  Young’s Literal Translation

 

My heart is inditing a good matter; literally, bubbleth with a good matter – is so full of it that the matter will burst forth.

 

Think of a time in your life when you were so full of joy that you were bubbling.  You want to share.  You HAVE to share!  Those times are amazing.

 

When we come into the perfect plan of God for our lives, submitting our will and desires to receive His will and desires, we get this good matter that bubbles profusely out of us.  We feel as if we will explode otherwise.

 

THE DIG:  Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible

My heart is inditing a good matter,…. What is valuable and excellent, concerning the excellency of Christ’s person, of his kingdom, of his love to the church, and of the church itself; what is pleasant and delightful, comfortable, useful, and profitable: this his heart was inditing; which shows that it was under the sanctifying influences of the Holy Spirit, and denotes the fervour of it; it “boiling up”, as the word (x) signifies; being heated by the fire of the divine Spirit, whereby it was hot within him, and caused him to speak with his tongue; and also the abundance that was in it, it “bubbling up” (y), as some choose to render it: from whence this good matter flowed like water out of a fountain;

I speak of the things which I have made touching the King; the King Messiah; the King of the whole world, and of the kings of it, and of the saints in it; over whom he reigns in a spiritual manner, and in righteousness; concerning whom this psalm or poem was composed by David under divine inspiration, and which he here delivers:

my tongue is the pen of a ready writer; or as (z) one; such an one as Ezra was, Ezra 7:6, that writes swiftly and compendiously; suggesting, that as he was; full of matter, he freely communicated it, being moved by the Holy Spirit, who spake by him, and whose word was in his tongue; which made him so ready and expert in this work.

POINT OF ACTION:  Ask the Holy Spirit to bring to your memory those times when you ‘bubbled.’  Relive that experience.  What were you doing?  Why did you feel this way?  See it in great detail.  Do this with each experience the Holy Spirit brings to your mind (now and always).  Look at the answers to your questions.  What do they have in common?  This will give you great insight into His plan for you.

Look for surprises in the mundane things of life.  Allow me to share my ‘bubbling’ moment from today.

I am preparing for the God Speed Ministry Conference.  I have to give a ‘state of the ministry address.’  God put it upon my heart to show the potential for impact in IHRA to the chaplains.  Well, that was my interpretation of it.  God just wanted to show me what He is doing.  The two photos attached show the reach of God through this ministry.  I was so stunned and so amazed when I completed compiling this information.  LOOK WHAT THE LORD HAS DONE!!!!!!!  Just look at what He has chosen to do through this ministry and the people He chose to be part of it.  God is so good!  He is so AWESOME!!!  Praise His Holy Name!

PRAYER:  Father thank You for ‘bubbling’ moments.  Provide them for each person on this study today.  Give them revelation of Your great plan for their lives.  Let us bubble with the deeds of the Lord in our lives this day and every day.  To God Be the Glory forever and ever!  Amen.

GSM Can US 1.2014

GSM World Reach 1.2014

Week 3 Day 2 – Designed to Praise

Psalm 148 New International Version

1Praise the Lord.

Praise the Lord from the heavens; praise him in the heights above.

2Praise him, all his angels; praise him, all his heavenly hosts.

3Praise him, sun and moon; praise him, all you shining stars.

4Praise him, you highest heavens and you waters above the skies.

5Let them praise the name of the Lord, for at his command they were created,

6and he established them for ever and ever— he issued a decree that will never pass away.

7Praise the Lord from the earth, you great sea creatures and all ocean depths,

8lightning and hail, snow and clouds, stormy winds that do his bidding,

9you mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars,

10wild animals and all cattle, small creatures and flying birds,

11kings of the earth and all nations, you princes and all rulers on earth,

12young men and women, old men and children.

13Let them praise the name of the Lord, for his name alone is exalted;

his splendor is above the earth and the heavens.

14And he has raised up for his people a horn, the praise of all his faithful servants,

of Israel, the people close to his heart.

Praise the Lord.

 

All of creation is praising God with sound, with whatever voice He has given them.

How great is our God!  How great is our God!  Sing with me, ‘How great, how great is our God.’

The entire universe is praising God.  Watch this video clip from Lou Gigilio of the stars and whales mashup.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7zWKm-LZWm4 This is the 14 minute version.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hd_iK6IMHCE  This is the 4 minute version.

 

Lou, this preacher/scientist/passionate lover of God gives great insight into how the entire universe uses their sound to Praise the Lord!  God uses sound to create.  He uses sound to increase and develop our faith in Him.  He designed us to be like the whales, the stars and all of creation as we join in an unending song of His praise.

 

But we humans have the gift of choice.  James 3:9-10 says, “With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.”

 

Our tongue takes us off course from our God designed purpose and our determined End.  We began this study dreaming of possibilities.  Then we committed them to paper to help us and others see the vision.  Now we must speak it.  Some of us began to speak of it when the vision began to come.  Some of us had spoken pre-determined goals of health or wealth, New Year’s Resolutions.  But now the doubts become to come.  The old ruts and habits have come back with great force.

 

It is at this point that we need to go to James 1 for instruction.

1James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,

To the twelve tribes scattered among the nations:

Greetings.

2My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations. 3Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. 4But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.

5If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all men liberally, and upbraids not; and it shall be given to him. 6But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavers is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. 7For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing from the Lord. 8A man unsettled in his opinions is unstable in all his ways.……….

12Blessed are those who endure when they are tested. When they pass the test, they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.

13When someone is tempted, he shouldn’t say that God is tempting him. God can’t be tempted by evil, and God doesn’t tempt anyone. 14Everyone is tempted by his own desires as they lure him away and trap him.”

 

We must keep God’s words and God’s praise upon our lips and in our mouth if we really want to get through the hurdles and overcome past ways which we and others spoke into being.  Faith comes by hearing.  We MUST hear God’s words when we FALL unexpectedly and repeatedly into diverse temptations we are to be joyful, give praise and speak God’s words and the END.  In the face of your enemy – defeat, impossibility, sickness, disease, lack, trauma – is when you need, no YOU MUST, declare God’s praise and speak God’s good plan for your life aloud.

 

Oh dear fellow believers, this one point will change everything.  We have given voice to doubt, complaining, grumbling, judgment and death.  I have perfected this.  I hear it all around me and I have joined the song and voice of the enemy.  Only we humans can make that choice.  We lift our voices against our God, our Creator, our Sustainer, our Provider, our Healer, our Help when we voice anything negative.  God is love.  God is light.  God is good and only good.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Begin to filter the negative (other than positive) out of your words and language.  Enlist the help of family and friends.  We humans are deaf and blind to our own faults.  I know because I have spent the last 5 years of my life enlisting the help of family, Toastmasters, Consistent Positive Direction certification course, The Servant Leader in addition to God and His Word.  I have prayed for open ears and open eyes.  I have had to take a huge dose of humility to adopt a teachable spirit and evict the spirit of irritability and complaint when they do point out the wrong.  It requires determination.  It requires effort.  Gary & I made a game of it.  We had to learn a new way of thinking before we could get our words in line.  Immediate benefits was an immense sense of well being and goodness.  “But now you must rid yourselves of every kind of sin–angry and passionate outbreaks, ill-will, evil speaking, foul-mouthed abuse–so that these may never soil your lips.”  Colossians 3:8

 

PRAYER:  Holy Father, conform me to Jesus’ image, pure, holy, blameless.  I agree with you that I can be as You say.  It begins today with my mouth.  I receive Your help.  This is a God-size project which requires Your power and ability in me.  Thank You for changing me.  Thank You for believing in me.  Thank You for loving me just as I am while You are conforming me into Jesus’ image.   Today I come into complete agreement.  I accept that trials and temptations will come.  I also reaffirm You will be with me in them.  Today, I come into agreement with You, knowing You are ALWAYS in me working Your good will and pleasure into physical expression.  Thank You.  Praise You!  Amen.

Week 3 Day 1 – Make Your Way Prosperous

Week 3:  Make Your Way Prosperous 

…7″Only be strong and very courageous; be careful to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may have success wherever you go. 8″This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success. 9″Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:7-9

 

This is the only time in scripture where prosperity and success are spoken of together.  To meditate means to mutter continually, speak aloud, ponder aloud, sing, shout, etc.  To meditate means to get your tongue, your spoken word, involved.  This is the week we begin to write the goal upon our hearts with our tongues.

 

Week 3, Day 1

There are just some times when God rocks my world so significantly that all I can do is go ‘WOW!!!!!!!!!’  Today is one of those days as God opened my eyes to see the ‘whole puzzle.’

 

Puzzle Piece #1:  “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” This is how I learned Romans 10:17from the King James translation of the Bible.  Faith comes.  It is progressive.  It comes by what we hear.  The God faith comes by hearing the word of God.  Fear (False Evidence Appearing Real) is faith in the negative.  We have ALL perfected that!  It because we constantly hear fear based information in the news.  We speak it to one another.  So faith – either in God or in evil – comes in the same measure as we hear.  We must hear God’s words to have God-faith.

 

Puzzle Piece #2:  “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”  Hebrews 11:1  Faith is substance and evidence.  Weymouth puts it this way:  “Now faith is a well-grounded assurance of that for which we hope, and a conviction of the reality of things which we do not see.”  Faith is substance, evidence and well-grounded assurance.  Really?  My concept had been of some intangible thought or belief.  Or is it? I decide to sit in a chair because I believe it will support me.  My belief has substance.  I have evidence of the reliability of chairs.  I have a well-grounded assurance of safety, support and reliability.

 

Puzzle Piece #3:  Faith is substance.  It comes by hearing.

Scientists have been trying to discover the basic substance of every physical thing on earth.  They discovered the cell, its neutron, proton and electron.  But what is their basis? In 1964 they discovered the ‘quark.’  All matter begins as a ‘quark.’  When you research it you will discover lots of technical language.  But here it is in layman’s terms:  compressed sound waves.  Everything that exists comes from compressed sound.  God said.  God saw!         It took us thousands of years to prove what God said in Genesis.

 

Puzzle Piece #4:  Words are sounds.  Sounds have frequency.  Frequencies heal and give life or they kill and destroy.  That is why words are so powerful.  Kind words, loving words create life and give health.  Condemning, harsh, accusing words hurt, destroy and kill.  Our own words are either building our lives for good or for evil.

Evil words are anything opposite of love and life.  They bring stress which is the basis of all disease.  Our physical heart actually has a small ‘heart’ which scientists now know to be our conscience and communication center with God.  When we are stressed our heart of hearts is shut down, cut off from our brains.  Death begins to enter.

 

Puzzle Piece #5:  Let’s go back to Romans 10:17  “Therefore faith is from the hearing ear, and the hearing ear is from the word of God.”  Aramaic Bible Translation     Faith comes by the hearing ear.  What happens inside an ear when sound strikes the bones?  The frequency of sound is amplified.  It reverberates through our bodies bring life and healing or causing stress and death.

 

The hearing ear carries the SUBSTANCE of faith into our bodies.

 

Knowledge comes from reading but faith comes from hearing because it translates the substance – the quarks – of life or death into us and into the world.  We build our world with our words.  We create our life with our words.  When we speak we add to the hearing because now our tongues and mouths are in harmony with our ears in translating and creating frequencies of life or death.

 

My heart is overflowing with a good word; I speak of the things which I have done concerning the king; my tongue is the pen of a ready writer. Psalm 45:1

 

THE DIG:  Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible of the above verse:

My heart is inditing a good matter,…. What is valuable and excellent, concerning the excellency of Christ’s person, of his kingdom, of his love to the church, and of the church itself; what is pleasant and delightful, comfortable, useful, and profitable: this his heart was inditing; which shows that it was under the sanctifying influences of the Holy Spirit, and denotes the fervour of it; it “boiling up”, as the word (x) signifies; being heated by the fire of the divine Spirit, whereby it was hot within him, and caused him to speak with his tongue; and also the abundance that was in it, it “bubbling up” (y), as some choose to render it: from whence this good matter flowed like water out of a fountain;

I speak of the things which I have made touching the King; the King Messiah; the King of the whole world, and of the kings of it, and of the saints in it; over whom he reigns in a spiritual manner, and in righteousness; concerning whom this psalm or poem was composed by David under divine inspiration, and which he here delivers:

my tongue is the pen of a ready writer; or as (z) one; such an one as Ezra was, Ezra 7:6, that writes swiftly and compendiously; suggesting, that as he was; full of matter, he freely communicated it, being moved by the Holy Spirit, who spake by him, and whose word was in his tongue; which made him so ready and expert in this work.”

 

THE CLEAR PICTURE:  Our ears are designed to catch sounds, amplify them and reverberate them throughout our bodies.  Those sounds are frequencies.  These frequencies either harmonize to bring health or they disrupt making us ‘out of tune.’  Every organ in our body has its own frequency.  Only health can occur when every organ is operating at its designed frequency.

Gossip, criticism, condemnation, ridicule, vulgarity and all such evil speech is a negative harmful frequency.  Picture it as though you were standing completely exposed at a nuclear meltdown.  The radiation (a negative frequency) is destroying your body.  The high concentration makes it happen quickly.  A high concentration of negative talk from those around us and on the air waves (ie: radio and tv) brings negative, damaging frequencies into our bodies.

Thankfully, good is more powerful than evil.  The good heals quicker than the evil destroys.  “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil by good.” Romans 12:21 Over and over in God’s Word He tells us to put away harmful, evil speech.  He commands us to only speak words of life and healing.  “The power of the tongue is life and death— those who love to talk will eat what it produces.”  Proverbs 18:21

WHATEVER needs to change in your life and in mine MUST begin with our words.  Faith comes by hearing…….the hearing ear.  No wonder God says it has to be His Words.  “It is the spirit who gives life. The flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and are life.”  John 6:63

 

POINT OF ACTION:  TODAY, this moment, we must take control of our tongues.  It is necessary to our life and our health.  Determine with all that is within you to only speak life giving words in each and every situation.  To quote Thumper from the movie Bambi:  “If you can’t say something good, don’t say nothing at all.”

 

PRAYER:  Father, Holy God, You are amazing.  You create us as a whole unit of spirit, soul and body.  You created us in Your image, ‘another speaking spirit.’  You endue us with the power of creative speech.  Yet we have destroyed ourselves with our own words due to lack of knowledge.   Forgive us!  Help us change by the power of Your Spirit.  Cleanse us by the power of Christ’s blood.  Empower us to think before we speak.  Let us train our tongues to sing songs of praise.  Let us teach our tongues to speak words of love and life.  Let faith come in greater capacity as our tongues speak Your words into our ears.  In Jesus’ name.  Amen…..so be it!

Week 2 Day 7 – God is Working

1I will stand on my guard post and station myself on the rampart; and I will keep watch to see what He will speak to me, and how I may reply when I am reproved. 2Then the LORD answered me and said, “Record the vision And inscribe it on tablets that the one who reads it may run. 3″For the vision is yet for the appointed time; it hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it; for it will certainly come, it will not delay.…  Habakkuk 2:1-3

 

Here we are at the end of week 2.  It is time for a heavy dose of encouragement.  If you are like me, you think this is all up to you.  You dream it.  You determine it.  You plan.  You carry the load.  And the load is getting heavy.  You feel as though you have been around this mountain before.  You see the past failures and are beginning to feel this is another one in the making.

 

Now is the time to sing “A New Song of Praise”

…15″I will lay waste the mountains and hills and wither all their vegetation; I will make the rivers into coastlands and dry up the ponds. 16″I will lead the blind by a way they do not know, in paths they do not know I will guide them. I will make darkness into light before them and rugged places into plains. These are the things I will do, and I will not leave them undone.”   Isaiah 42:15-16

 

The praise come because God says this is His work.

 

The DIG:  Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary

42:13-17 The Lord will appear in his power and glory. He shall cry, in the preaching of his word. He shall cry aloud in the gospel woes, which must be preached with gospel blessings, to awaken a sleeping world. He shall conquer by the power of his Spirit. And those that contradict and blaspheme his gospel, he shall put to silence and shame; and that which hinders its progress shall be taken out of the way. To those who by nature were blind, God will show the way to life and happiness by Jesus Christ. They are weak in knowledge, but He will make darkness light. They are weak in duty, but their way shall be plain. Those whom God brings into the right way, he will guide in it. This passage is a prophecy, and is also applicable to every believer; for the Lord will never leave nor forsake them.

 

13For it is God who works in you both to will and to work, for his good pleasure.

14Do all things without murmurings and disputes, 15that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you are seen as lights in the world, 16holding up the word of life; that I may have something to boast in the day of Christ, that I didn’t run in vain nor labor in vain.   Philippians 2:13-16

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Rely upon your greatest strength God.  He cannot fail.  Failure is not part of His nature.  Lean upon Him.  Draw upon His strength, His power, His knowledge.  Include Him in everything!  Do nothing on your own.  Even Jesus said “ I can do nothing on my own.”  (John 5:19) If He couldn’t why should I think I can?!  Nothing is too trivial for Him.  We only fail when we fail to include Him because He is the Life and the Way.

 

PRAYER:  Father today I include You in my every detail.  Forgive me for omitting You from areas of my life because of what I’ve heard in the world. You are not bothered by my requests however small or mundane.  I realize now it is the enemy’s tactic to divide and conquer.  I invite You into every cell of my life.  Amen.

Week 2 Day 6 – Goal

1I will stand on my guard post and station myself on the rampart; and I will keep watch to see what He will speak to me, and how I may reply when I am reproved. 2Then the LORD answered me and said, “Record the vision And inscribe it on tablets that the one who reads it may run. 3″For the vision is yet for the appointed time; it hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it; for it will certainly come, it will not delay.…  Habakkuk 2:1-3

 

9″For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways And My thoughts than your thoughts. 10″For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, And do not return there without watering the earth And making it bear and sprout, And furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater; 11So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; It will not return to Me empty, Without accomplishing what I desire, And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.…  Isaiah 55:9-11

 

We need to know the goal is already accomplished.  The End is finished.  Our part is to keep walking, one step at a time, until we reach it.

 

But maybe you’ve hit the wall.  That is what happens in week 2.  The newness and the excitement are wearing off.  Now comes the tedious step after step after step.  We want the end.  We hate the middle – that everything between the beginning and the end part of the process.

 

So here we are at the wall.  Life is full force testing our strength of resolve.  Do we beat our heads against the wall as maybe we’ve done in the past?  Do we detour?  Do we turn back?  Do we just quit?

 

Now is the time to cry out for help.  God, Your ways are higher than mine!  Your thoughts are higher than mine!  Strengthen me!  Guide me!  Carry me.  And then just lean gently into His loving arms and cry.

 

8  You keep track of all my sorrows.

You have collected all my tears in your bottle.

You have recorded each one in your book.

9  My enemies will retreat when I call to you for help.

This I know: God is on my side!

10  I praise God for what he has promised;

yes, I praise the Lord for what he has promised.  Psalm 56:8-10

 

The point of action and the prayer were all rolled into the above.

I do encourage you to read all of Psalm 56.  My grandmother had me recite it every time I faced a trial.  Thanks Grandma!

Week 2 Day 5 – Appointed Time

1I will stand on my guard post and station myself on the rampart; and I will keep watch to see what He will speak to me, And how I may reply when I am reproved. 2Then the LORD answered me and said, “Record the vision And inscribe it on tablets that the one who reads it may run. 3”For the vision is yet for the appointed time; it hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it; for it will certainly come, it will not delay.…  Habakkuk 2:1-3

 

Acts 17:26-28a  “and He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation, that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; for in Him we live and move and exist,”

 

The END is for an appointed time.  Yes, we Begin at the END in our thinking, evaluating, visioning and planning but it has an appointed time.  It must come……in the future.

 

As Americans we live in a ‘microwave’ society.  The virtue of patience gets little practice and perfecting.  But one of the key ingredients to beginning at the end is to set our focus daily on the desired end.  We need encouragement toward that end.

 

The second scripture for today is one of my favorite.  Read it again.  God determined the day of our birth, our precise location on planet earth because He knows our expected END.  He designed us for the mission He purposed for us.  He put everything in us to fulfill our purpose and destiny.  “You know all my desires, O Lord, and my groaning has not been hidden from you.” Psalm 28:9  God knows what He put within our hearts to do.

 

Today as you sit before Him ask Him to reveal any place where the world has confused this purpose, this END.  Be serious about getting rid of all He shows you.  It is always and only for your good.  God knows if you are playing games (ie:  I’ll ask God to show me then I will choose whether or not to get rid of it).  God is with you and for you.  The purpose of your set time and place is so you might grope for Him and find Him!  Success is ensured at the appointed time!

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Today we repeat.  Practice perfects.

1.      Make time with God.   Define a place that becomes your watch tower, your guard post.  The more you use it the greater sense of God’s presence will permeate it.  This habit will deepen your experience with God.  Your physical body and mind will learn what to do and you will go into the presence of God more quickly over time.

2.      Pour out any frustrations, complaints or needs.   This is a key to all prayer:  express all concerns, racing thoughts.  Even if it seems inappropriate, write it down, making a note to deal with it later.  Thoughts can be like interruptive children:  give them a bit of attention and they settle down on their own. (Stash a journal and pen in your watch tower if possible so it is always ready.)

3.      Then sit.  Wait.  Quietly.

Stay until you begin to “see what He will say.”  God often uses pictures in our minds.  Write them down, with as much detail as possible.  Write down thoughts.  Record all you sense intuitively, see as pictures or thoughts that “pop” into your head.  Don’t judge or evaluate them, just record them.  Later you will engage your reasoning mind to see if they line up with the names and characteristics of God or of satan.  Confront the devilish ones:  is this a belief that needs to change; is there something attached to this that needs to be sent away?  Cultivate the Godly ones.  Look up any words or phrases or scripture verses that come during this time.  It is good to look up the definition of any words that “POP.”

 

PRAYER:  Father, You designed me.  You determined the date and place of my birth.  You selected my family and community.  You designed how I would look – my color, my height, my bone structure, etc.  I had absolutely no input into any of it.  Today I bow before You.  Today I acknowledge I am Your handiwork, Your masterpiece, created for Your purpose.  I also know – or at least am acknowledging today – that in finding that purpose I will find the greatest joy and fulfillment in my life.  Today Father, I wait.  Show me the thoughts which have been polluted by the world.  Reveal to me Your END for me.  Let me begin again today to serve You afresh.  Cleanse me by the blood of my Lord Jesus Christ.  Empower me by the Resurrection Power which gave Him life from the dead.  Glorify Yourself in me and through me.  In Jesus’ Name I pray.  Amen.

Week 2 Day 4

1I will stand on my guard post And station myself on the rampart; And I will keep watch to see what He will speak to me, And how I may reply when I am reproved. 2Then the LORD answered me and said, “Record the vision And inscribe it on tablets, That the one who reads it may run. 3″For the vision is yet for the appointed time; It hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it; For it will certainly come, it will not delay.…  Habakkuk 2:1-3

 

The gift and purpose of a vision is to share with others so they may be involved.  Where there is no guidance the people fall, But in abundance of counselors there is victory.  Proverbs 11:14

 

We need others to accomplish our vision.  Even in weight loss which is very personal you need a diet plan teaching you a new way of eating.  You encouragement and support from friends and family.  Whey they know your desired weight and health goals they are able to GENTLY assist and encourage you toward success.

 

Do you still need more convincing?  Do you know the very first “not good” in scripture?  “It is not good for man to be alone.” Genesis 2:18  As a child most people told me that meant ‘you had to get married’ but that is just a smidgen of what God intends.  God intends for man to work in unity and harmony.  There is more prosperity in cities than in farms.  There is more prosperity in corporations than in sole proprietorships.  People survive and live better when surrounded by others.

 

Once we know God’s intent for us to work together on EVERY level, we need to know how to involve them.  Here’s The DIG:  Verse 2. – Jehovah answers the prophet’s expostulation (Habakkuk 1:12, etc.). Write. That it may remain permanently on record, and that, when it comes to pass, people may believe in the prophet’s inspiration.  The word includes the inward revelation as well as the open vision. Upon tables; upon the tables; i.e. certain tablets placed in public places, that all might see and read them; the summary of what was to be written is given in ver. 4. This was to be “made plain,” written large and legibly.  “That he may run that readeth it.” …..means that every one who reads it may run, i.e. read fluently and easily. …..”Many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased,” interprets the clause to signify that whosoever reads the announcement might run and publish it to all within his reach. “‘ To run,'” he adds, “is equivalent to ‘to prophesy’ in Jeremiah 23:21,” on the principle that those who were charged with a Divine message were to use all dispatch in making it known.  – Pulpit commentary

 

DIG DEEPER:  That he may run that readeth it; may run through the whole without any difficulty, without making any stop, being written in such large capital letters; and those cut so well, and made so plain, that a man might run it over at once with ease, or even read it as he was running; nor need he stop his pace, or stand to read.  – Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible  (Think billboard along a highway)

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Continue perfecting your written vision.  Share what you have with someone you can trust.  Get their reaction.  Ask questions such as “what is your understanding of what you’ve read?”  “How can I make it better, clearer?”  Be open and teachable.  Having a teachable spirit is key in getting your message PLAIN so others may run with it.

In all actuality you are creating a blueprint of your END.  Changes/fine tuning can be made if needed during the building process.

 

PRAYER:  Father I thank You for filling this world with so many people who assist me in this life.  You provide bakers to supply me with fresh bread.  I live in a world of bounty provided through the service of other because they are fulfilling the vision you gave them.  You provide carpenters and builders who construct the home in which I live, work, shop, play and worship.  Give me greater understanding of all Your immense benefits to me through human connections.  Let me embrace my place in this great world with an attitude of gratitude.  Thank you Blessed Lord for your blessings on me.  Amen.

Week 2 Day 3

1 I will stand upon my watch, and set me upon the rampart, and will watch to see what Hashem will speak in me, and what He shall answer to my complaint.

2 And Hashem answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tablets, so that a herald may run with it.

3 For the vision is yet for an appointed time); it speaks of the End, and does not lie; though it tarry, wait for him [The Messiah]; because he will surely come, and will not tarry.  Habakkuk 2:1-3 OJB

 

‘Write the Vision, and make it plain upon tablets, so that a herald may run with it.”

Today as you work on filling in more of your vision, your desired goal such as weight, etc., make it plain.  If you are like me you have been feeding the waste basket or have been using the backspace and delete buttons on your computer.  I KNOW what I want.  I can see it.  I can feel it.  But filling in the steps in between is knowledge yet to come.

 

That’s okay.  We are only concerned with writing the END.  We have to be so clear and concise on what the END looks like that other people begin to “see” our vision too.  It only takes one person being able to ‘plainly’ write their vision to change the world.

 

Maybe you are just not a “seer” (a see-er).  My eyes were blinded too.  I asked God to show me heavenly things.  I asked HIM to show me, let me see, as He sees.  It became my great desire.  I read books of those who could see.  I read scripture such as verse 1 where Habakkuk waits ‘to see’ what God will say.

 

God answers prayer.  I now see; sometimes faintly, sometimes as shadows, sometimes so vividly it is more real than what is around me.  I continue to pray for greater accuracy in seeing the unseen.  Ask God to grant you sight into the heavenly realms.  He will never force anything on us but waits – no longs! – for us to ask Him for the things He desires and planned for us to possess and utilize.  This is your birthright.  Ask for it.  Your Heavenly Father is the Executor of the will of Jesus Christ.  Jesus died and bequeath His estate – His Kingdom here on earth – to those who believe in Him.  We are the beneficiaries!  Request what you need and desire.  Trust your Heavenly Father to know the right time and way.  Be alert for surprises.  God’s ways are not our ways.  What comes may be much different than you expect!  And so much better.  Be open.  Wait to see.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  This is a repeat of yesterday.  Practice perfects.

1.      Make time with God.   Define a place that becomes your watch tower, your guard post.  The more you use it the greater sense of God’s presence will permeate it.  This habit will deepen your experience with God.  Your physical body and mind will learn what to do and you will go into the presence of God more quickly over time.

2.      Pour out any frustrations, complaints or needs.   This is a key to all prayer:  express all concerns, racing thoughts.  Even if it seems inappropriate, write it down, making a note to deal with it later.  Thoughts can be like interruptive children:  give them a bit of attention and they settle down on their own. (Stash a journal and pen in your watch tower if possible so it is always ready.)

3.      Then sit.  Wait.  Quietly.

Stay until you begin to “see what He will say.”  God often uses pictures in our minds.  Write them down, with as much detail as possible.  Write down thoughts.  Record all you sense intuitively, see as pictures or thoughts that “pop” into your head.  Don’t judge or evaluate them, just record them.  Later you will engage your reasoning mind to see if they line up with the names and characteristics of God or of satan.  Confront the devilish ones:  is this a belief that needs to change; is there something attached to this that needs to be sent away?  Cultivate the Godly ones.  Look up any words or phrases or scripture verses that come during this time.  It is good to look up the definition of any words that “POP.”

 

Additional tool:  Find pictures similar to your desired goal.  Search magazines and on the web.  Put them onto a ‘dream or vision board.’  This can be any piece of paper/ cardboard from a box, the inside of your closet door.  Put the name of your goal/dream/vision at the top.  Begin to visually create the desired vision.  Put this ‘board’ where you will see it multiple times a day.  (Note:  Pinterest is great but make sure you have a physical board you can touch and see multiple days a day.)

 

PRAYER:

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.

For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people, I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.  Ephesians 1:3,11-23

Begin At The End Bible Study, Week 2 Day 2

 

1I will stand on my guard post And station myself on the rampart; And I will keep watch to see what He will speak to me, And how I may reply when I am reproved. 2Then the LORD answered me and said, “Record the vision And inscribe it on tablets, That the one who reads it may run. 3″For the vision is yet for the appointed time; It hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it; For it will certainly come, it will not delay.…  Habakkuk 2:1-3

 

Today we will really dig into the above scripture.  In Chapter 1 Habakkuk has this conversation with God:

“Habakkuk’s First Prayer

2How long, LORD, must I call for help and You do not listen or cry out to You about violence and You do not save?

3Why do You force me to look at injustice?

Why do You tolerate wrongdoing?

Oppression and violence are right in front of me.

Strife is ongoing, and conflict escalates.

4This is why the law is ineffective and justice never emerges.

For the wicked restrict the righteous; therefore, justice comes out perverted.”

 

This could be heard from anyone of us today!  We rail about the state of our world.  We sometimes feel that God is ‘not listening,’ that we are being ‘forced to look at injustice.’  But the date is “Late Seventh Century B.C. (c. 626 to 605 B.C.)”  I bring this to our attention to help us see “there really is nothing new under the sun.”  (Ecclesiastes 1:9)

 

The prophet Habakkuk found himself where we find ourselves in our society today.  That is good news for us as we listen to his complaint against God to see what solution he found in chapter 2.

 

1I will stand on my guard post and station myself on the rampart; – Habakkuk waits for the communication which he confidently expects. ‘I will stand upon my watch.’ As a watchman goes to a high place to see all around and discern what is coming, so the prophet places himself apart from men, perhaps in some secluded height, in readiness to hear the voice of God and seize the meaning of the coming event. Prophets are called “watchmen.” What he will say unto me; “what he will speak in me.” He watches for the inward revelation which God makes to his soul.  Pulpit Commentary

 

Habakkuk is in character as a watchman, as all the prophets were: as a watchman takes the proper place he watches in and looks out, especially in time of danger and distress, if he can spy anyone bringing tidings, that he may receive it, and notify it to the people that have appointed him a watchman; so the prophet retired from the world, and gave himself up to meditation and prayer, and put himself in a waiting posture; looking up to the Lord, and expecting an answer to his expostulations with him,concerning the success of the enemies of God’s people, and the calamities that were like to come upon them, that he might report it to them;  Gill’s Exposition of the Bible  “red highlights mine”

 

POINT OF ACTION: 

1.       Make time with God.   Define a place that becomes your watch tower, your guard post.  The more you use it the greater sense of God’s presence will permeate it.  This habit will deepen your experience with God.  Your physical body and mind will learn what to do and you will go into the presence of God more quickly over time.

2.      Pour out any frustrations, complaints or needs.   This is a key to all prayer:  express all concerns, racing thoughts.  Even if it seems inappropriate, write it down, making a note to deal with it later.  Thoughts can be like interruptive children:  give them a bit of attention and they settle down on their own. (Stash a journal and pen in your watch tower if possible so it is always ready.)

3.      Then sit.  Wait.  Quietly.

4.      Stay until you begin to “see what He will say.”  God often uses pictures in our minds.  Write them down, with as much detail as possible.  Write down thoughts.  Record all you sense intuitively, see as pictures or thoughts that “pop” into your head.  Don’t judge or evaluate them, just record them.  Later you will engage your reasoning mind to see if they line up with the names and characteristics of God or of satan.  Confront the devilish ones:  is this a belief that needs to change; is there something attached to this that needs to be sent away?.  Cultivate the Godly ones.  Look up any words or phrases or scripture verses that come during this time.  It is good to look up the definition of any words that “POP.”  Use a good resource such a Merriam Webster Dictionary.  God will surprise you with a new truth as you discover all a word really means.  The Bible and a good dictionary are your best tools.

 

This is the pattern for successful communication with God.  Utilize it for the rest of your life….if you want to be successful.

 

PRAYER:

Father, I make myself available to You today.  I want to fulfill my purpose.  I want to know Your purpose fully for me.  I desire a good END.  I begin now.  Show me a place that can become ‘ours.’  Guide me in this process.  Let me be forgiving of myself when I fail.  Let me receive Your forgiveness and encouragement for “you know my frame, you remember that I am dust. (Psalm 103:14)”  Give me grace with myself.  Loving God, draw me into Your Presence this day.  Amen.

Week 2:  Write the Vision This week we begin to commit our goal to paper.

 

Week 2, Day 1  Write the Vision

1I will stand on my guard post And station myself on the rampart; And I will keep watch to see what He will speak to me, And how I may reply when I am reproved. 2Then the LORD answered me and said, “Record the vision And inscribe it on tablets, That the one who reads it may run. 3″For the vision is yet for the appointed time; It hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it; For it will certainly come, it will not delay.…  Habbukkuk 2:1-3

 

Before anything is built it must be committed to paper.  Blueprints are needed for a house or any building.  They are needed for cars, for machinery and equipment.  They are needed for gardens. Business plans must be written before the business is developed.

 

Our thoughts and ideas and desires must be committed to paper before they can be brought to life.  Why?  Because it is the first step of birthing a thing into this world.  Everything that exists is created with words.  ‘By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.’  Hebrews 11:2

 

The thoughts, ideas and concepts in our heads are clarified and solidified when we speak them aloud.  But most people fear to speak aloud their dream or goal because the ideas are still rather fuzzy and unclear.  God knew our visions and dreams and goals needed to be written down.  We begin to SEE more clearly as we give form to the thoughts through the written word.  On paper we sculpt, edit, erase and create the final product which we can confidently share with others.

 

Remember you are writing the END.  You lay out proposed plans and ways.  These are subject to change as knowledge and clarity come.  Only the END and BEGINNING remain the same.

 

WE must see before we can tell others.  WE must know before we can help others know.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Use what you wrote on Day 2 to jump start today’s action.  Write out your vision, dream or goal.  You should be clearer in thought today.  Write as many details about the vision, goal or project as possible.  It’s okay to scratch out, tear up and start over.  This is not an exact science.  Plenty of paper, a waste basket and patience are required for today’s action.  It’s okay if you have to work on it all week.  That is the goal and intent of week two.  The main thing is BEGIN to record the END today.

 

PRAYER:  Father, You know the End at the Beginning.  In fact You began at the END.  Today, I ask Your guidance as I begin to write my vision.  Grant me clarity.  Grant me courage.  Thank You for being involved in this process and in my life.  Amen.

Week 1 Day 7– Decide

This lesson is the key to successful life.  If you read nothing else, read this one over and over until you own it!!!!

15″See, I have set before you today life and prosperity, and death and adversity; 16in that I command you today to love the LORD your God, to walk in His ways and to keep His commandments and His statutes and His judgments, that you may live and multiply, and that the LORD your God may bless you in the land where you are entering to possess it.  Deuteronomy 30: 15-16

 

Congratulations.  You are at the end of the beginning week.  You have been challenged to use vision, imagination and allow yourself to dream about what could be.  You have identified a point or points of pain which need or must be changed.  You have determined that things will change.  Congratulations.

 

Now it is time to DECIDE.  de·cide verb  1: to make a choice about (something) : to choose (something) after thinking about it

2: to choose whether or not to believe (something) after thinking about it : to reach a conclusion about (something) because of evidence

3: to cause (something) to end in a particular way : to determine what the result of (something) will be

 

Before you DECIDE let me make a few points of clarification from this week’s lesson.

First:  Re-read the following scripture.

Matthew 25:34  “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.

Romans 8:29  For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

Ephesians 1:4  For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.

 

I changed the emphasis to point out to you what God has chosen and decided.  He prepared a kingdom for YOU.  He predestined YOU to be conformed into the image of Jesus.  We are to be holy and blameless in His sight.

 

All this is God’s choice and God’s work.  We choose to let Him.  We choose to be with Him, allow Him to work in us and through us.  He chose us to execute His kingdom here on earth.

THAT IS POWERFUL!

We are destined to succeed on a God scale.

 

Then what is the issue?

 

The issue is the propaganda proliferated upon us by the enemy.  It begins in childhood as our parents and family begin to tell us who we are.  They project their beliefs and perceptions upon us; (as infants we are blank canvases ready to be filled with the colors of life).  Then teachers project their expectation and beliefs upon us.  New friends add to the mix.  Later employers add their portion to the mix.  Satan even has it issued from pulpits and various teachers within the church.  We end up a concoction of mixed ideas, thoughts and beliefs accumulated through our journey of life.

 

Much of this is void of the truth God declares about us.  Just read the above scripture again.  This challenges me too.  The kingdom is prepared for ME!?  I am to be like Jesus, holy and blameless??  Really God?  Is it really possible?

 

And then I hear a resounding ‘YES!!!!’ from Him.’  Then He reminds me of the sources of my thoughts.

 

There are 3 sources for the thoughts in our head.

The first is our own analytical thoughts.  We evaluate information and make decisions.  They deal with the activities of life and survival.

The second are the lovely and wonderful thoughts which God speaks to us.  These are often light and airy.  They are easy to whisk away carelessly.  We may even be oblivious of them.

The third are the accusations and destructive thoughts which Satan injects into and upon our minds.  These are heavy and ponderous like concrete.  Once allowed to stay they invite like thoughts in ever increasing frequency.

 

We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ,” 2 Corinthians10:5  We do that by meditating on the word of God which is what this study helps us accomplish.  “Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you].”  Romans 12:2 Amplified Bible

 

POINT OF ACTION

I am including 2 resources.

The first is on meditation. We renew our mind by meditation.  We cleanse the mind and transform our life.  Our life is the product of our thoughts.

The second is the names and attributes of God and the names and attributes of Satan.  With this list you will be able to determine the source of the thoughts in your head.  If it lines up in character with God’s name and attributes it is from Him.  If it lines up with the names and attributes of Satan, it is from him.

Thirdly, all others are your thoughts.

Once you know the source, you can decide who to allow to stay.  Keep the good and lovely God thoughts.  Kick out the evil detrimental ones.  It will take time to evict them.  That is what this study is all about.  You want God’s perfect will for your life.  You want what He says about you.  It takes 30 days to create a new habit.  But once established it will serve you and work for you automatically the rest of your life.  IT IS WORTH IT!

 

RESOURCE ON MEDITATION

7“Only be strong and very courageous; be careful to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may have success wherever you go. 8“This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success. 9“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”  Joshua 1: 7-9: 

Meditate: Action word meaning: To muse, commune, or speak

To ruminate, roll over in the mind, analyze, study, imagine, muse, mutter, groanings

Resounding musical response, making melody, musing, the act of meditating musically

Communicating, musing, babbling, deeply considering, pondering, studying,
putting forth thoughts

Reflection, Thorough Study, Musing Thoughtfully

Meditation is a way to reprogram our thinking.

The mind consists of what? It’s just a collection of all kinds of information, bad and good. It is just like a computer, whatever you program into it comes out when you push the button.  ? One of our fellow practitioners, he has an electric organ, and he programs it into different musical rhymes. So the same thing with our brain. It would be empty; it would be absolutely blank, just like a brand new computer, until we start to record things and information, and sometimes good, sometimes bad. If we happened to record the good information and when we want to make use of it, then the good information comes out. If we happened to record the bad information, then of course the bad information comes out.

So now, to mediate, to pray to God or to study the holy scriptures is just a way to reprogram our thinking, our way of life. Because we reprogram it in a good way, the result that comes out is always good, or at least not as bad as before, or at least not all bad. Even though we can’t help to record some more bad information daily, the number will be less than before, right? It’s because we keep recording good things, on which we meditate.  We meditate on God’s name, we meditate on God’s power and we get the God power coming through us, filling us with joy, virtues and goodness. Then even the bad information that comes in has no room or less room, and also may be minimized. And because of the goodness and the powerful energy from God through meditation each day, we will be able to dilute or maybe delete completely any information that is harmful to our minds and our souls.     From Godsdirectcontact.com

Resource #2:

NAMES OF GOD

ADONAI Sovereign, controller, master, owner, Lord

YAHVEH Self-existent, Eternal, The Lord, I Am that I Am

EL Strength, mighty, Almighty, God

ELOHIM Supreme (magistrates), God

EL SHADDAI God, The Powerful, All Mighty, Almighty

YAHVEH YIREH The Eternal will see, is present, will provide, will provide a sacrifice, Savior, Lamb of God, Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

Redeemer

YAHVEH NICCY The Eternal, my banner, standard (of victory)

YAHVEH TSIDQENUW The Eternal, our right, Everlasting Father

YAHVEH SHALOWM The Eternal, our peace, Prince of Peace

YAHVEH SHAMMAH The Eternal is there, thither, is present, Emmanuel (God with us)

YAHVEH RA’AH (ROIY) The Eternal, our shepherd

YAHVEH RAPHAH The Eternal our healer, mender, who makes whole, curer, physician, Great Physician

Mighty one of Israel

Lord of Hosts, Lord of Lords, Master, Mighty God

Compassionate, Gracious

Abounding in love

Longsuffering, Slow to anger

Faithful, Faithful and True Witness

Plenteous in mercy — forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin

Refuge and strength

Messiah, Annointed One

Teacher

High Priest

Advocate with the Father

Wonderful, Counselor

Creator, Builder/Architect, Chief Cornerstone, Author and Finisher of our Faith

The Rock

The Way, The door, The Truth

Living Water

The Bread of Life

The Life, Light of the World, Light shining in the darkness

The Alpha and Omega (beginning and end), First and Last

The All in All

Worthy

Resurrection and the life

Good Shepherd

Friend

He who is, who was, and is to come

 

NAMES/CHARACTERISTICS OF SATAN

Abaddon Hebrew name for Satan meaning “Destruction”. “

Accuser  “for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night,

Adversary

Angel of light  “And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light.” 2 Corin. 11:14

Angel of the bottomless pit

Anointed covering cherub  “You were the anointed cherub who covers; I established you;….Ezekiel 28:14

Antichrist

Apollyon Greek name for Satan meaning “Destroyer”.

Beast

Beelzebub  the ruler of the demons.’” Matthew 12:24

Belial    an unbeliever

Deceiver “So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world;

Devil  “He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.” 1 John 3:8

Dragon

Enemy

Evil one

Father of lies   -Starts with truth of scripture but corrupts it with a lie         Confusion

God of this age

King of Babylon

King of the bottomless pit

Lawless one

Liar

Lucifer

Man of sin

Murderer

Power of darkness

Prince of the power of the air

Roaring lion

Rulers of the darkness

Ruler of this world

Satan

Serpent of old

Son of perdition

Star

Tempter

Thief  “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” John 10:10

Wicked one

Week 1 Day 6  Begin at the End:  Choose

 

Matthew 25:34  “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.

Romans 8:29  For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

Ephesians 1:4  For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.

 

Choice.  What an awesome word!  God makes choices.  He chose us.  He made the choice to include us in His kingdom.  He chose for us to be conformed to the image of His Son.  Choice is one of God’s greatest gifts and attributes which He gave to mankind.

 

Choices are key in getting to the end from the beginning.  What are you choosing?  What are you choosing to create?

 

Today is the day to make a choice, to decide.  We’ve identified the pain or what needs to change.  We’ve begun to identify the desired positive outcome.  We’ve identified the absolute need to include God in our vision and subsequent decisions or we have seen God’s vision for us.

 

Today we need to compare where we currently are in our situations, pains, life and dreams to where we REALLY want to be.  Today we need to compare apples to oranges and decide which we really want in our lives.  Change requires commitment.  We human beings love sameness and familiarity.  Change means stepping out of our comfort zones and into unknown territory.

 

But wait!  We’ve seen the end at the beginning.  We KNOW where we want to go.  It may be new but we have seen the end.  The pain of our current situation (health, finances, relationships, etc.) must give way to the new vision.  Count the cost of staying here.  What will it cost you?  What will it cost others?  Feel it.  Really feel it.  Are you willing to settle for less than what you know you’ve seen in your dreams, your goals, your visions?

 

You joined this study because you KNOW you have to change, make a choice, decide to do better, be better, or make something better.  Sunday was officially the end of the holiday period.  Normal begins again today.  Routine and habit kick in full force.  You will be faced with many choices as to food, exercise, temperament, or actions to be taken toward “the End” you now desire.  Make that choice now!

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Make that choice now!  Write it down.  “Today I choose the action of _________________ toward my desired END.”  Put it in your smart phone.  Write it on cards, post it notes or pieces of paper.  Tape one to your bathroom mirror.  Put one in your pocket.  Put one on the fridge.  Put one on the door.  Put them where you will encounter them throughout your day.  Read it aloud each time you see it.  Try to speak it to yourself every hour.  Use a search engine to help you find a scripture verse to reinforce your choice and include it on your pieces of paper.  Maybe a verse in this study thus far has leapt out at you.  Use it.  God’s words are “spirit and life.”  They can give “life” to your new END.

 

PRAYER:  Father, today I choose ____________________________.  I want to be the person You designed me to be and accomplish fully my purpose here on this earth.  Grant me strength.  Grant me determination.  Holy Spirit be my guide and helper as I travel this new path.  Remind me when habit appears.  Let me celebrate my victories with You and give You thanks for answered prayers.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Week 1 Day 5  What Do You See?

 

Zechariah 4: 2He said to me, “What do you see?” And I said, “I see, and behold, a lampstand all of gold with its bowl on the top of it, and its seven lamps on it with seven spouts belonging to each of the lamps which are on the top of it; 3also two olive trees by it, one on the right side of the bowl and the other on its left side.”

Zechariah 5:2And he said to me, “What do you see?” And I answered, “I see a flying scroll; its length is twenty cubits and its width ten cubits.”

1 Samuel 28:13 The king said to her, “Do not be afraid. What do you see?” And the woman said to Saul, “I see a god coming up out of the earth.”

Jeremiah 1:11 The word of the Lord came to me: “What do you see, Jeremiah?”

“I see the branch of an almond tree,” I replied.

12The Lord said to me, “You have seen correctly, for I am watching to see that my word is fulfilled.”

13The word of the Lord came to me again: “What do you see?”

“I see a pot that is boiling,” I answered. “It is tilting toward us from the north.”

Amos 7:8   And the Lord asked me, “What do you see, Amos?”

“A plumb line,” I replied.

Then the Lord said, “Look, I am setting a plumb line among my people Israel; I will spare them no longer.

Amos 8: 1This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: a basket of ripe fruit. 2“What do you see, Amos?” he asked.   

“A basket of ripe fruit,” I answered.

Then the Lord said to me, “The time is ripe for my people Israel; I will spare them no longer.

Jeremiah 24: 1After Jehoiachina son of Jehoiakim king of Judah and the officials, the skilled workers and the artisans of Judah were carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, the Lord showed me two baskets of figs placed in front of the temple of the Lord. 2One basket had very good figs, like those that ripen early; the other basket had very bad figs, so bad they could not be eaten.

3Then the Lord asked me, “What do you see, Jeremiah?”

“Figs,” I answered. “The good ones are very good, but the bad ones are so bad they cannot be eaten.”

 

“Seven times in scripture God asks, “What do you see?” God is interested in our vision. Before your dream comes to pass, you have to see yourself accomplishing that dream. You’ve got to get a picture of it. Before you lose the weight, before you break the addiction, you have to see it happening in your imagination.”  Godson Nnamdi

(Renee’s note:  There are actually 8 times this is said.  8 is the number of New beginnings and New Birth.  I see God smiling as we discover another of His hidden gems.)

 

What is your desired goal or project to accomplish?  Is a life mission?  Is a getting to a certain weight or a state of health?  Is it more patience or some other virtue?

 

Today is the day to SEE IT!  On this Sunday day of rest (or whichever day you set aside for worship and time with God) focus on seeing in your mind’s eye the goal and project accomplished.  Fill in the details.  What are you wearing?  How will you feel?  Where are you?  Fill in as many details as possible.

 

Oh I hear the “I can’ts’ out there.  But hear what God said about men in Genesis 11:6, And the LORD said, “Behold, they are one people, and they have all one language, and this is only the beginning of what they will do. And nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them.”  One translation says, anything they imagine…”

And in Matthew 17:20  He said to them, “Because of your little faith. For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.”

 

God has more faith in us than we have in us.  He knows what He put within us.  He knows we can and will accomplish those things we see ourselves accomplishing and doing.

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Give your imagination to God.  Ask Him to show you things to come.  Ask Him to help you see the potential He put within to carry out your purpose and goals.  Ponder the ‘what if’s’ in a great and good way.   (Most of us have perfected them in the negative which just proves your ability to do this exceedingly well.)   Explore the future.  Begin at the end!  See it!

 

PRAYER:  Father, Your love for us is so intense.  Your pride is us is so great.  Your belief is us is solid and set.  You set us in a great world filled with potential.  You tell us ‘nothing will be impossible for us.’  Today Father, I set aside doubt and fear to entertain You, Your thoughts and Your ways.  Let me shake the acquired limitations.  Let me clothe myself with Your image and see what You see.  Enable me to see the END that I may begin.  Amen.

 

Week 1 Day 4  Will?  Whose will?

Let your Kingdom come, let your will be done also in the earth, just as it is in Heaven.  Matthew 6:10

 

Yesterday we studied the ‘will.’  We looked at the definition of will.  We determined its required place in seeing the End at the Beginning and thus being able to realize the accomplishment of the desired goal/project.  As important as our will being completely involved and committed to seeing the End at the Beginning there is one more aspect (Merriam-Webster definition: the nature of the action of a verb as to its beginning, duration, completion, or repetition and without reference to its position in time).  That aspect is God’s will.

 

Jesus, our Savior and Example taught us to pray (ask God to bring to pass) the words in Matthew 6:10.  “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”  Let us dig into the depth of what He was really saying.

 

The Dig*:  Thy kingdom come. Let there come the full establishment of thy realm. The prayer passes from the personal acceptance in the heart of God’s revelation of himself to the consequent result…….. Thy will be done. Let thy will come into complete existence (γενηθήτω; cf. “Let there be light,” Genesis 1:3, LXX.). The thought is not merely God’s will realized in this or that action, whether performed or endured by us (cf. Matthew 26:42Acts 21:14), but God’s will as a whole coming into full being. God’s will is always in ideal until it is accomplished in act. The connexion of the clause with what has gone before is therefore this – the acceptance of God’s manifestation of himself leads to the establishment of his realm, and this to the realization of his will, which until then is only ideal (cf. Matthew 5:18, note, end)…….. The highest prayer that we can make in the furtherance of God’s cause is that his gracious purpose, his will (whatever it may include) may be fully brought about. In earth, as it is in heaven; as in heaven, so on earth (Revised Version).  Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary

 

God has put within my spirit the desire and need to pray this one verse on a daily basis ongoing basis.  It is the ultimate goal.  After a few weeks of such prayer there came a desire to know things to come.  “Yet when the Spirit of Truth comes, he’ll guide you into all truth. He won’t speak on his own accord, but he’ll speak whatever he hears and will declare to you the things that are to come.”  John 16:13 (ISV)  This grew into a spiritual yearning deep within my spirit.

 

Then in prayer, actually sitting silently before God, I had this vision.  “I saw myself being lifted up from the earth.  As I went up, cares and possessions from the earth dropped away.  I found myself standing in the precise point of the corner of a square land.  I knew I was in the New Jerusalem.**  A glorious mist covered the ground.  I was excited.  I wanted to explore.  I lifted my foot to step forward when I heard a loud voice:  “STOP!!!  That is illegal here.”  I froze.  Then with great compassion and love the voice said, “Here we ONLY do what we see the Father do and we ONLY say what we hear the Father say.”***   I waited.  The mist cleared.  I could see a city in the distance.  Instantly I was there.  The city was in the midst of major construction:  cranes, dozers, trucks, workers.  It was very busy but it was also SOOOOO peaceful.  Each person knew exactly their portion of the building project.  Each person had a humble confidence to perform their work.  I noticed a distinct absence of competition or concern of what other people were doing.  I intuitively knew that the current workers were building upon work completed by others before them.  Each person was completely engrossed in their work.  They were working for the glory of God.  There was intenseness and urgency with righteousness.  There was hard labor with joy.  The pervading atmosphere was peace.

I looked to my guide.  He drew my attention to one particular portion of the city.  ‘This is what you are building here through your life on earth now.  What you do there has eternal benefit or consequence -the lack of benefit and completeness – here.’****

POINT OF ACTION:  Sit before God simply asking Him, “Let your Kingdom come, let your will be done also in the earth, just as it is in Heaven.”  You may want to make it very personal:  let your will be done in me, just as it is in Heaven.  Yield your will to His.  In time He will show you things to come.  He told Abraham before He destroyed Sodom. “16When the men got up to leave, they looked down toward Sodom, and Abraham walked along with them to see them on their way. 17Then the Lord said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do? 18Abraham will surely become a great and powerful nation, and all nations on earth will be blessed through him.c 19For I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just, so that the Lord will bring about for Abraham what he has promised him.” 20Then the Lord said, “The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous 21that I will go down and see if what they have done is as bad as the outcry that has reached me. If not, I will know.”  Genesis 18:16-21

PRAYER:  Let your Kingdom come, let your will be done also in the earth, just as it is in Heaven.  Amen.

 

*The Dig:  This will always be resources used to DIG deeper into God’s word.

 

**  1Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. 2I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 3And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”  5He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”   6He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. 7Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children. 8But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”  Revelation 21:1-8

 

*** 19Therefore Jesus answered and was saying to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner. 20″For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself is doing; and the Father will show Him greater works than these, so that you will marvel.…”  John 5:19-20

 

**** Vision of Renee Bingham in the summer of 2013

 

While I will list the scripture references I use, I really ask you to consider reading them in the whole context in your own Bible.  It is God’s written word that changes and transforms us.  There is no substitute.  Blessed reading!

WEEK 1, DAY 3

I Peter 1:20   For He was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you 21who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.

 

“The foreknowledge of God implies the exercise of his will.  The incarnation, death, and resurrection of Christ were not the result of a change of purpose to meet unforeseen circumstances; they were foreseen and foreordained in the eternal counsels of God.  “before the foundation of the world” demonstrates that all God’s decrees and appointments, relating either to Christ, or his people, are eternal; no new thoughts, counsels, and resolutions, are taken up by him in time.  A Saviour was provided before sin was committed, and the method of man’s recovery was settled before his ruin took place; and which was done without any regard to the works and merits of men, but is wholly owing to the free and sovereign grace of God, and to his everlasting love, both to the Redeemer and the redeemed.”   From Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible

 

At the beginning of any project we must exercise our will to see the thing through to the end at whatever the cost.   A determined will settles a matter before it is begun.  It sees the end clearly and knows the outcome.  It also counts the cost.  At least, for us humans, we count the known costs before we proceed.  We settle in our will to accomplish the project by dealing with the known and the unknown.

 

Will:  Verb – to express desire, choice, willingness, consent, or in negative constructions refusal

  • ·        to express frequent, customary, or habitual action or natural tendency or disposition
  • ·        to express futurity
  • ·        to express capability or sufficiency
  • ·        to express probability
  • ·        to express determination, insistence, persistence, or willfulness

Will:  Noun:  desire, wish

  • ·        disposition, inclination
  • ·        appetite, passion
  • ·        choice, determination
  • ·        something desired; especially :  a choice or determination of one having authority or power
  • ·        request, command, the part of a summons expressing a royal command
  • ·        the act, process, or experience of willing :  volition
  • ·        mental powers manifested as wishing, choosing, desiring, or intending
  • ·        a disposition to act according to principles or ends
  • ·        the collective desire of a group
  • ·        the power of control over one’s own actions or emotions  (definite from Merriam Webster)

 

POINT OF ACTION:  Is this really what I want?  Am I willing to commit totally to it?  If there are any hesitations or wonderings, confront them.  Bring them out into the light of thought.  Are they legitimate?  If so, what will I have to do about them to accomplish my project?  Are they traditions passed down without real knowledge or bearing upon current reality?  Are they fears based in emotion?  These hesitations or questions must be dealt with completely at this point.  Any cracks in the foundation will surface again.

 

PRAYER:  Thank You Father for putting within me a free will.  You trust me to make decisions for my life that also impact the lives of others.  Strengthen my will and my sense of choice today.  Purify me of selfishness, laziness or coward-ness.  Today Father, I choose to be clear in my will, to choose good, to choose to bless my life and the lives of others.  I thank You for coming along side to enable and strengthen me as I pursue and live my life.  Grant that I may be at peace with it, others and You.  If not, show me the things which need to be confronted or changed. Then give me the will to change. Amen.

WEEK 1, DAY 2

I Peter 1:20For He was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you 21who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.

Acts 2:23  This man was handed over to you by God’s deliberate plan and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross.

Before you can create a thing such as a house, a business, a scrapbook or anything you must have some idea of what you want, why you want or need it, and have a desired impact your life and/or the lives of others.  Something deep inside of you has reached a point where something HAS to change.  That is the basis for every New Year’s Resolution.  There is a pain that either needs or MUST be relieved.

God knew the pain that man would bring upon himself and others through disobedience and evil choices.  He KNEW something would have to change.  He gave man choices and gave him the answer:  15″See, I have set before you today life and prosperity, and death and adversity; 16in that I command you today to love the LORD your God, to walk in His ways and to keep His commandments and His statutes and His judgments, that you may live and multiply, and that the LORD your God may bless you in the land where you are entering to possess it. 17″But if your heart turns away and you will not obey, but are drawn away and worship other gods and serve them, 18I declare to you today that you shall surely perish. You will not prolong your days in the land where you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess it. 19″I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants, 20by loving the LORD your God, by obeying His voice, and by holding fast to Him; for this is your life and the length of your days, that you may live in the land which the LORD swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give them.” Deuteronomy 30: 15-20

But God already knew the end at the beginning.  He knew man would consistently make choices that lead to sin and pain.  That is why He – God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit – KNEW from the foundation of the earth the need for a Savior.  God KNEW the desired outcome:  to be our God, to live among us, to bless us with His goodness and His Presence.

So what are you trying to create?  What is your New Year’s Resolution?

Is it to lose weight?  Since that is one of the most common resolutions, let’s take a look at the pain that must be changed and the desired outcome.

Most people determine to lose weight.  That is a negative.  Our mind can only see in the affirmative.   We humans are designed by God to create positive events, situations and products.  (The flip side of anything good is sin and is always present in anything.)  Thus in setting a New Year’s Resolution “to lose weight” we are setting ourselves up for failure because the mind can only visualize a positive.  Therefore we need to determine the desired weight.  But we also need to identify the pain we want to change.  What is being overweight costing us?  Our health, our self-esteem and respect?  Does it limit our ability to do things?

Identify the pain, then you can identify the desired outcome.  Now you can begin to see what you want to accomplish.  The brain cannot visualize losing weight.  It can visualize achieving a set weight.  The mind can bring life to the desired image.  It can embrace the desired outcome to look good, feel good about yourself and be healthy. Now you are foreordaining a good outcome.  Now your mind, emotions and will can get in agreement and see that this thing is created!

POINT OF ACTION:  Think of your New Year’s Resolution or of something in your life that needs or MUST change.  Think of what it is costing you.  Think of what the opposite of that pain is and begin to visualize it.  The more you think of the desired outcome, the better you can foreordain it.  Commit the pain and the desired outcome to paper.  As you think of what you desire to have in your life more thoughts and ideas will “pop” into your mind as you go about routine, sometimes ‘mindless’ tasks.  Write them down in your phone or on paper.  Your mind is beginning to create this new outcome.  Rejoice.  Record.  Be alert for these “God ideas.”

PRAYER:  Father, thank you for foreordaining deliverance from pain and reconciliation to you through Jesus.  I see in your Word the way to live.  Today I confess this pain of ______________________.  I confess that I have given place to it and allowed it to continue by lack of confrontation, lack of knowledge and by lack of courage to deal with it.  Today I see Your path to freedom and change.  Holy Spirit be my guide and my strength.  Give me knowledge, courage and strength to change, to build a new outcome.  Through Jesus my Example I pray.  Amen.

Day 1:

Proverbs 8:23 I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was.

Here we are at the beginning of a New Year.  It is brand new.  It has never existed.  It is a blank canvas.

Our scripture from Proverbs is so appropriate for this new beginning.  The verb in our scripture today is outstanding in the Hebrew.  It signifies properly “to pour forth” (as of molten metal), then “to put down,” “to appoint or establish.”

Today you have the power to consider what you will “pour forth” into this New Year.  What one thing would you like most to “appoint or establish” in your life and in this world in this New Year?  What do you want to have accomplished byDecember 31, 2014?

This day is molten metal, liquefied and ready to be shaped by how you pour it out.  Spend time quietly sitting before God asking the Holy Spirit to reveal to you what He sees for this year, to guide you as you pour out your days and your life into things that will be established.

Get a piece of paper or journal to record the following your thoughts, what you sense God saying to you and what you want to establish by the end of the year.  Today is a day to dream, to reconnect with your heart and with God to discover your life’s ultimate purpose.  Write at least one thing you desire to establish this year.

I challenge you to think on a God-scale.  I remember asking members (who were all over 65 years old) of another Bible Study what one thing they had desired to accomplish in their lives.  One gentleman’s answer stuck with me.  As he said it, I could sense the thought and devotion he had for this goal:  “I wanted to raise a Godly family.”  It seemed so simple yet it had such impact upon him, his family and the world.

Think grandly (in addition to the small things) you desire to be established in your life and world.

Prayer:  Creator God, our Loving Heavenly Father.  You see the end at the beginning.  You declare.  You decree.  You establish.  You created us in Your image, as another speaking spirit endued with creative power.  Today, Father as we stand on the first day of this new year, let us plan and purpose how we will “pour out” the metal of our lives.  Let us be purposeful in how and what we create.  Endue us with a knowledge of Your Presence with us and for us.  May our lives and the work of our hands satisfy us and glorify You.  Amen…….so be it established.

Bonus:  Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it. Reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, and all the animals that scurry along the ground.” Genesis 1:28

The scripture above is a needed reminder that we are blessed by God to accomplish our goals.

 

 

For those who may have missed it, here is the overview for this first week:

 

Week 1:  Start at the End:

4Now the word of the LORD came to me saying, 5″Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, And before you were born I consecrated you; I have appointed you a prophet to the nations.”  Jeremiah 1:4-5

What is your desired goal?  Is it a New Year’s Resolution to lose weight? Be healthier? Exercise more?

Before you can birth something new you must KNOW the desired result.  This week we will be engaging our minds as we consider the goal we say we want.  We have to come to know it before we birth it.  We do this in our thoughts and imagination.  We begin to picture in our mind’s eye what the outcome will look like, feel like, etc.

Maybe you have already started a diet or exercise program.  Great!  Keep it up.  This study will help you clarify the why’s and the how’s to endure to the end.  By the end of this week you will have a vivid picture in your mind and KNOW this goal.

InVision Chaplains
KOT CHAPLAINS