God Versus the Devil

 

God is good and the devil is not. God is all powerful and the devil is the defeated foe. Why then do Christians fall under the devil’s limited power?

 

 

Our Friday afternoon Bible study read through Mark 11 yesterday, in the New King James Version.

 

 

After each section, I’d teach what it meant with God’s help and I also listened to the others’ opinions.

 

 

When we came near the end of the chapter at verse 19, we’re told they left the city in the evening.

 

 

In the beginning of the chapter Jesus looked through the leaves of a fig tree hoping for figs because He was hungry. It wasn’t the season for the fruit but I’ve heard that occasionally there is a second growth.

 

 

When the tree proved to be unfruitful, Jesus cursed the fig tree.

 

 

Mark 11:20  Now in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots.

Mar 11:21  And Peter, remembering, said to Him, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree which You cursed has withered away.”

Mar 11:22  So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God.

Mar 11:23  For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says.

Mar 11:24  Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.

Mar 11:25  “And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.

Mar 11:26  But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.”

 

 

I stopped a minute to think. How often do I pray with absolute, unshakable faith?

 

 

A few years back, I prayed for a pastor set to go in for surgery by the end of the week. In full faith, I told him God could heal him so he wouldn’t need the procedure. When he asked me to pray, my faith wavered. I did pray but he knew my confidence had fled.

 

 

Every month now, we pray for healing at our church. My faith rarely wavers and if it does, I ask God to give me faith, right in the middle of the praying and receive it. Sometimes God moves and answers our prayers. Other times, it seems as though people leave with their illnesses intact.

 

 

I don’t doubt God’s ability. I’ve seen too many answers to prayer and many healings.

 

 

Perhaps our sin hinders God’s response or we harbor bitterness against others. Maybe we’re in a Job situation.

 

 

When King David asked God to cleanse his heart and renew a right spirit within him, I believe he received what he asked for, a right standing with God. He also lived a life filled with consequences for previous sins.

 

 

When King David ignored his son’s sinful behavior and failed to punish him, as noted in 2 Samuel 13, Absalom, another son of David’s with a different mother, took vengeance. Things got worse from there.

 

 

I believe when we Christians live for ourselves and disregard God’s commands, we empower the devil to come against us and God allows consequences so hopefully, we’ll wake up and commit ourselves to follow God with all our being. The devil is defeated but he’s crafty and he lays traps for people.

 

 

May God bless you and me. I need Him more all the time.

 

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Heading Out

A few days ago, my husband and I swung by my youngest daughter’s house to see her and her brother, and later, her husband.

We stayed for dinner and then headed north to see their sister and family. Before we left, I got a tour of her garden while we waited for the food in the oven to heat. I grew some vegetables at the side of our garage, which is not the best place for sun and rain to hit. With all the water coming from the clouds this summer in Upstate New York, tomatoes have been bountiful. Zucchini showed up regularly on one plant in small batches and the smaller plant, green as the squash itself hasn’t produced one piece of fruit. I don’t know if the animals are getting them before us or if it’s because it’s a little crowded at that spot.

I have more tomato plants than I planted, either because my husband runs over the trailing vines and the seeds squirt into the soil, or the birds are dropping tomato seeds after they’ve eaten some of the produce. So, I’ve been giving a lot of cherry tomatoes and ten medium-sized tomatoes away besides eating a bunch myself.

My husband asks if I’m going to make spaghetti sauce with them and I keep saying yes, but then we go out of town. I expect to make sauce, if the weather doesn’t go crazy and freeze early. I heard a ton of geese squawking away today, but when I glanced out the window all I could see was white fog.flight of geesehttps://www.google.com/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwirjZiqhpLWAhXE8RQKHUFHCV0QjRwIBw&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.pinterest.com%2Fsherylstow%2Fcanadian-geese%2F&psig=AFQjCNEKBmiNenlJRuBbMW6n5Jm7J9UCuA&ust=1504838471059269

 

The Canadian geese may be on their way South. I love seeing them in their V-formation, but the older I get, I realize I enjoy seeing them more in Spring than leaving in Fall. Anticipating Spring gets my mind and body ready for flowers and gardening. Preparing for Winter gets me checking out blankets, heavy outdoor clothing, tires with good tread for handling snowy roads, an ice-melter so we don’t fall on the sidewalks, boots, and filters for our furnace, etc. As a younger person, Fall was my favorite season. It still is in some respects, but now it reminds me that Winter is around the corner and that is less appealing as I age. Although, every season has its beauty.

Some northern folks like to ski and ice-skate. I used to sled downhill as a child and young mother. Now, I walk in the brisk air and then hurry inside for a hot cup of tea–
chai or ginger or lemon or rooibos, to name a few. I buy hot chocolate for the younger generation and my husband. After shoveling, he likes to dunk peanut butter toast into hot chocolate to thaw out and to enjoy a childhood favorite food combination.

We stopped at an ice cream store on our way North that night early in the week and the girl at the counter told us they were closing for good this month. Their ice cream is great, but it’s expensive, high in fat, and not the only ice cream shop in town. My husband understands business from his years working as a manager, considering the “bottom line.”

“Maybe their agreement with the partner store expired or they ran into difficulties working together.”

I didn’t think that way. All I thought was that the worker looked sad and I wondered if selling less product meant that she would lose her job.

With all the storms and fires in America at the moment, people are probably not rushing out to get ice cream. Many folks give to charities to help those in trouble, even thousands of miles away in this country. Our church is going to take an offering for Convoy of Hope this Sunday. They are a first responder to disasters and we helped them for a few days when Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans back in 2005. We know they are a reputable organization.

We also pray. I stopped at an outdoor market today and the farmer spoke about the poor people in Florida with a hurricane of epic proportions on its way there. He couldn’t understand why some would choose to stay in the face of danger. He said, “Why would they risk their lives?”

I told him they have their priorities out of order.

Then I told him an elderly lady at our Bible study asked us to pray for them today and so we did, beseeching God to send the hurricane out to sea and to not allow any lives to be lost in boats.

Sometimes I like to get away from home, but as we traveled on Monday night, we got hit with such a rain storm with lightning splitting the sky that we pulled off the road.

My husband couldn’t see and he said if the professionals are waiting for better visibility he would follow their example. We arrived late but safe. Thank You, Jesus!

It’s nice to be home again.

I hope you are well. May God bless you!

Fun on a Sunday

Sunday morning we went to a picnic spot with a pond and a pavilion. We enjoyed a beautiful sunshiny day and lots of pleasant company accompanied by some tasty food. I got to know some of the people better that visited this year.

IMPROVEMENTS TO THE POND(photo from: (www.timberlandbait.com)

 

Usually we cancel our evening service the day of the picnic because people are tired. I tried to rest a little and then it was time to choose worship songs. Not that I had much of a voice left. 🙂

 

After singing, my husband left the sound booth so we could pray. Seven folks gathered and he didn’t feel like a sermon was the right route to go.

 

“If we keep canceling Sunday night service, people will stop showing up.”

 

Then he gave us some direction. “Let’s pray like Jesus taught the disciples – starting out with ‘Our Father which art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name.’”

 

He went on to explain that hallowed denotes honor and praise. “How can you show God the respect due His name? What words can you describe Him with in the form of a prayer?”

 

We began talking to the Lord and when someone asked for needs to be met, my husband told the person that we’d get to that, but now is the time to exalt our Savior. A bit later, we did pray for personal requests with the addition of the phrase, “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”

 

Jesus said in the New Testament, in Matthew 18:20, (KJV): “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”

 

We didn’t linger a long time, but as we left each face exhibited peace and contentment.

 

Then, my husband and I began our Sunday night ritual: “Where should we eat?”

 

Sometimes I cook on a Sunday night, but if I’m tired and we’re able to, we eat out. There’s not a lot of restaurants open at that hour of the day.

 

I told my hubbie I was going to pray about it. We have a number of small towns around our little home spot and I’m not familiar with them all.

 

I felt impressed to head north and he was okay with it. We found a new restaurant, to us, that we both enjoyed and hope to visit again sometime.

 

I said, “What a nice day we had,” and he agreed.

 

This is the second Sunday night we’ve prayed at our church over the last thirty days and the people really liked it. Both times it was spontaneous and I missed the first one for a family member’s milestone birthday party in a nearby city.

 

I’m glad I made it for lots of reasons but when I saw the glow on one of the ladies’ faces outside of the church after the meeting, I thought, Aw, wish I’d been there.

 

God gave me the desire of my heart this last Sunday.

 

I hope this finds you well. May God bless you.

 

 

 

 

 

13 Year Anniversary

Our Ladies Bible study celebrated their 13 year anniversary today. It’s actually two days from now, but we meet on Wednesdays.

We’ve been getting new people lately and I love how our group welcomes visitors. Occasionally, I jump too soon into giving a book away and the person never returns.

The latest person, a young college student, rearranged her classes so she could attend today.

She is going to memorize the worship songs and bring her guitar on Sunday with permission from the leader.

I sought out a stranger in town today and found out she’s this young girl’s mother. They both have the sweetest smiles and joy in their hearts for the Lord.

One never knows what a day will bring. Since I gave away our last spare book to someone that may not come back, I’ll ask this young person if she wants our Unglued tome by Lysa TerKeurst.

My husband said since we’re almost done and if she doesn’t need the help that book gives, she may not want Unglued.

I’ll ask her on Sunday. I’m going to try and remember to bring in a zucchini plant as well. Her mom thanked me for the cherry tomato plant one of the ladies gave her daughter.

So delighted over a plant, it sparked the thought, I have four zucchini plants and a small space set aside for a garden.

I offered her a zucchini plant and she smiled with such delight, it gave me a warm feeling inside.

No wonder the Lord tells us to be thankful. It’s good for our attitude and I imagine it gives Him joy to be appreciated.

Occasionally people scam other people – strangers or friends may steal. My dad determined in his heart whenever he lent money to hope for repayment but not to expect it. That way it didn’t get in the way of relationship.

With the way the world is going, we have chances to forgive people daily – even those we haven’t met in person.                                                              (photo from http://images.search.yahoo.com/yhs/search;_ylt=A0LEVvRSUSZZpR8ADktjmolQ;_ylu=X3oDMTBsa3ZzMnBvBHNlYwNzYwRjb2xvA2JmMQR2dGlkAw–?_adv_prop=image&fr=goodsearch-yhsif&sz=all&va=praying#id=251&iurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.womensetapart.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2014%2F11%2Fbigstock-Praying-African-American-Teen-47553724.jpg&action=click)

So, we opened our Bible study in prayer, as usual, but we included people we don’t know whose names or home cities were in the news. We prayed for victims and families of deceased victims and for perpetrators and we prayed evil ones would repent and get saved and stop hurting people. Then we remembered our loving, just, all-powerful God before we shared favorite Scriptures.

A little later we celebrated 13 years of Bible studies and prayed for a continuation for as many more years as the Lord allows. Praise His name!

May God bless you.

A Change in Course

I’ve said it before, “My life is not my own.”

Early Sunday morning I thought about the day ahead and then the phone rang. My daughter from up north was calling. I said, “Oh, no.”

Because of the time of day, I rightly assessed the nature of her call, it wasn’t good news. She didn’t ask for my advice but when I heard my young grandson had another fever of 103 degrees Fahrenheit and the pain in his legs from five days ago had now turned into him only being able to stand on his tippy-toes, I told her to take him to the hospital with the best care for children. Her pediatrician agreed, so off they went.

Many years ago one of my sons’ needed to see a specialist for a problem and the doctor told me he didn’t need to see a pediatric specialist. “We’ll just watch it for a while.”

I felt uneasy about it, but I trusted him. Two-three years later, the office hired a pediatric specialist. He told me my son needed an operation. Cosmetically it ended up helping him, but internally and functionally his body had adapted to work around the incorrect configuration. Once the doctor fixed the structure, the body ignored the repair and worked as it always did, imperfectly. “He needed this operation two-three years ago,” he said. “I’m sorry.”

So we’ve dealt with it and moved on.

Last week my grandson had been diagnosed with the flu by his pediatrician, sight unseen. At the hospital, they said it was a virus and his body’s immune system sent enzymes to fight it. They were too high, although not alarmingly off and he was dehydrated. So they monitored his enzymes overnight and gave him an IV to get his fluids up.

As soon as I heard about it, I told her I’d drive up. We asked people to pray. I’ve found this Bible verse true more than once in my life: Philippians 4:6, (KJV):  Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

Php 4:7  And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

 

My husband and I rearranged what we could of our schedules. The dr.’s told her the virus could affect individuals in various ways. That night, her oldest son’s digestion erupted and the three adults in the house pitched in to clean up the vomit.

I was the first on the scene, so whenever we babysit and something like that happens I always tell her “You owe me,” and sometimes I add, “big time.”

Her response varies from a laugh to a smile or a comment. Yesterday she said, “I know it!”

We only saw them for about half an hour once they got home in the afternoon. My husband needed to be at work.

When my grandson came in pale and shaky and still on his tip toes a bit I almost started crying. My husband told him to flatten his feet out and he worked at it and then smiled as he regained total balance.

I guess he slept from the afternoon all the way through until morning. The oldest finally got his stomach to settle just after we left.

I’d been doing laundry and cleaning and bringing him water with advice to take it slowly –which he ignored the first time. His poor tummy. I tucked blankets around him and felt his forehead for fever. His grandpa went to buy him ginger ale.

When his mom got home, she sat close to him and I gave her the watered-down ginger ale that I’d swirled to get the bubbles out of.

She fed him a teaspoonful and got close to look in his eyes. She spoke softly and they seemed to be closed off from all the rest of us. I could sense him relaxing. “Mom and my brother are home, all is well now,” radiated from him.

It was so hard to leave. We haven’t seen them in a while. Yet, I’m the one who invited my husband which knocked a day off of our availability.

He took her some pajamas and stuff into the city in the dark of night. I hadn’t thought of that when I asked him to accompany me.

He’s the kind of dad that listens to his kids, so I’m sure she found comfort in him showing up. She said she was glad he made it there, too. She was just trying to figure out if I could extend my stay. I had an appointment today, so that’s the way it goes sometimes.

I’ll see her before too long if my time doesn’t get hijacked again. I make plans and then adjust them when life rears up with an alternate scenario.

I wonder if my son’s misfortune happened to prevent my grandson from going to the wrong hospital and ending up with kidney damage. Only God knows.

May God bless you this last week of February.

Life Choices

About a month ago, I got The Lost Detective: Becoming Dashiell Hammet by Nathan Ward out of the library. It’s published by Bloomsbury, New York, NY and copyrighted in 2015.

Media of The Lost DetectiveThis image is copied from http://www.bloomsbury.com/us/the-lost-detective-9780802776402/

Being Christmas and with all else that went on at that time, I didn’t get to read it until lately. Dashiell Hammet wrote hard-boiled detective stories based on his time as a private eye with the Pinkerton National Detective Agency in 1915 through the middle of 1917. One of his famous characters is Sam Spade.

I’m intrigued with decisions people make and the course their lives take. I have been since my childhood days when my mom encouraged me to visit the elderly next door neighbor women.

After starting Mr. Ward’s book I decided to read James Scott Bell’s book, Just Write: Creating Unforgettable Fiction and a Rewarding Writing Life, copyrighted in 2016 and published by Writer’s Digest Books, Cincinnati, OH.This image is copied from  http://www.writersdigestshop.com/just-write-paperback

I read James Scott Bell’s fiction and own a few of his books on the craft of writing. I’ve been praying about whether to write another novel and his book, Just Write is sparking my imagination.

May God bless you.

Music Heals the Heart

I went to a sing along gathering tonight to accompany a friend and my husband didn’t mind having some alone time.

She’s grieving so at the end of the night, she told me the music lifted her up and the words soothed her. I’m paraphrasing, but I had to agree with her.

My husband and I went to another friend’s church for a viewing earlier today. She lost her husband this week to lung cancer. So when I got home, we had two large flower arrangements on our kitchen table to put into our church for Sunday.

I’m so glad I got to sing worship songs to God, some new and some old. The hymn, “It is Well With My Soul” was written after a man lost part of his family on an ocean voyage while he stayed in his country to attend to duties. I went to Wikipedia for information which is not always reliable, and this is a quote from their site: ““It Is Well With My Soul” is a hymn penned by hymnist Horatio Spafford and composed by Philip Bliss.”

Such a beautiful song written in the 1870’s, it’s a timeless reminder of trusting God.

We were asked to pray for a young man outside of us with a couple of friends. My son-in-law prayed a heartfelt prayer for this young man. Those of us inside agreed with him in prayer. Shortly thereafter, the people came inside and this young man decided to receive Jesus as his Lord and Savior. We rejoiced, and from what I understand angels rejoice in heaven when a person receives Jesus!

I hope it is well with your soul tonight. May God bless you.

 

 

Time Flies, Two

Hi! This is the Monday following Thanksgiving in the USA, and I’m recovering from lack of sleep, too much to eat, and lots of company over to our home.

Sunday evening when I headed for church, I left my oldest daughter and her family packing their belongings. They’d arrived Wednesday night. I join the worship team on Sunday nights, but I stayed home until just before the service started, so I expected them to say, “No practice, no singing.”

When the leader invited me to join them, I repeated the rules. She said, “Rules, shmules.”

Well, I’m unsure of the spelling, but she’s a Christian not worried about appearances, but more about the heart of God and what does He want. Not that she’s perfect, so she’s told me, but she’s a delightful person and I gladly joined the team. When I didn’t know the song, I sang softly. Come to find out, since I didn’t arrive in time for a sound check, my microphone was off. 🙂

When we talked later, she asked me about it. I thought it was off once in a while and at other moments, I decided it might be on after all. Anyway, how do you tell the guy doing sound that the mike is off without disturbing everyone? So, I sang and was content in the knowledge that if I flubbed up, no one would know it. 🙂

When we got home Sunday night, it felt so quiet. We had four grandchildren since Wednesday and on Sunday afternoon, three more grandkids joined us. On Thursday evening two single moms came over and their time overlapped. So that day we had the four grandchildren and then two boys ages seven and three, plus a sixteen month old.

The two boys used to attend our church on a regular basis until I told the mom about a church that might interest her. They found it a better fit so now we only see them sporadically. The boys really bonded to my husband. He fell asleep on the recliner so the oldest boy quietly crawled up next to him and played a hand held game as my husband slept. Then the three year old climbed up on the other side of him, which woke my husband up. So he began to tickle and gently rough house and they were delighted. He loves kids and they love him.

On Saturday, my older brother and his wife came by to see the family. They had a gift for my oldest daughter and she appreciated that. My house is the central location for the two families, so when she is planning to arrive, I try to give them a heads up in case they can free their schedule.

On Monday morning, I told my husband that the time seemed to fly! No more hide ‘n go seek – I don’t find as many places to squeeze into as an adult. 🙂 No more sleeping bags stretched out. No more crying, no more laughing, no more hugs, no more chasing the three year old trying to get a hug. No more scolding the boys to get their toys out of the kitchen.

As I left for church Sunday night, knowing it was an early goodbye, I told my daughter I wouldn’t be crying when they left this time. “We’ll see you later for the Christmas play,” she said.

That helps to know we’ll see them again.

I often think where does the time go? I didn’t get as much time in the Word with them here, so I made up for it today. I asked the Lord if there was any place in particular He wanted me to read. I waited quietly – nothing. Then I read a while and asked again. This time I thought I heard Revelation seven. It felt incomplete, so I asked again and this time thought it was Revelation 1:7 which is: Rev 1:7, (GNB),  Look, he is coming on the clouds! Everyone will see him, including those who pierced him. All peoples on earth will mourn over him. So shall it be!

This made me feel as though Jesus is coming back soon. Then I read Rev 1:3, (GNB),  Happy is the one who reads this book, and happy are those who listen to the words of this prophetic message and obey what is written in this book! For the time is near when all these things will happen.

God’s timetable may seem slow and then, suddenly it speeds up and His purposes are being accomplished.

There’s an old saying, “Time flies when you’re having fun.”

That time warp happened to me this weekend when I got to enjoy people to the maximum. Then on Sunday night the worship leader prayed for Jerusalem because there are fires burning there. I asked for prayer for TN because I heard there are fires raging there, some of which have been set by arsonists. A friend told me today that GA is also on fire and there has been some arson there as well. So I’m praying that God will send rain and that people will look to God for reassurance from their fears.

I missed blogging. When I visited my daughter last month I tried to blog ahead of time and schedule it to appear on the chosen date, but it didn’t happen. So, I didn’t bother this time.

I blogged once while they were here. After that, I tried again but the internet was down. I think one of the grandchildren hit a button that disconnects the internet on the top of the computer case, if I understood my husband correctly. Another day I tried, but I’d let one of the family members borrow my computer and it took a long time before it was free. By then, I was tired.

Well, I hope this finds you well. May God bless you.

Jesus Prays Before He Gets Betrayed

I enjoy going to the nursing home for our Bible study, but I have to admit that I’m tired by Friday. Today we studied a few chapters in John. It’s a privilege to discuss the Word of God with women that have known Jesus for many decades and then to try and teach a woman in her 90’s. One of the ladies fell asleep in her wheelchair in her room. When I entered, she had fallen forward and her hand reached out in a funny way. I started praying, “Dear God, please let her be alive.”

He is a good God, she woke up easily. I guess that’s a position that stretches her back in a positive way and she’s happy when it happens. We’re all so unique, aren’t we? I would have had a muscle pull, I think.

When I checked the Holy Bible on my cell phone, the (NKJV) highlighted certain sections of the Scriptures. Since we studied them this morning, I wanted to write about them tonight. I’m including the headings, but I’m using the (ESV) instead from   e-sword, an internet company that provides the Scriptures and dictionaries and concordances and other benefits for a serious study of God’s Word.

These are the last words of Jesus to his disciples in a private session before He gets betrayed by Judas Iscariot. The title of John 17:1-5 is “Jesus Prays for Himself.”

Joh 17:1  When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you,

Joh 17:2  since you have given him authority over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him.

Joh 17:3  And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.

Joh 17:4  I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do.

Joh 17:5  And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed.

The second section is entitled, “Jesus Prays for His Disciples.”

Joh 17:6  “I have manifested your name to the people whom you gave me out of the world. Yours they were, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word.

Joh 17:7  Now they know that everything that you have given me is from you.

Joh 17:8  For I have given them the words that you gave me, and they have received them and have come to know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me.

Joh 17:9  I am praying for them. I am not praying for the world but for those whom you have given me, for they are yours.

Joh 17:10  All mine are yours, and yours are mine, and I am glorified in them.

Joh 17:11  And I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one.

Joh 17:12  While I was with them, I kept them in your name, which you have given me. I have guarded them, and not one of them has been lost except the son of destruction, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.

Joh 17:13  But now I am coming to you, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have my joy fulfilled in themselves.

Joh 17:14  I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.

Joh 17:15  I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one.

Joh 17:16  They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.

Joh 17:17  Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.

Joh 17:18  As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world.

Joh 17:19  And for their sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth.

The third title is “Jesus Prays for All Believers.”

Joh 17:20  “I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word,

Joh 17:21  that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.

Joh 17:22  The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one,

Joh 17:23  I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.

Joh 17:24  Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world.

Joh 17:25  O righteous Father, even though the world does not know you, I know you, and these know that you have sent me.

Joh 17:26  I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.”

To me, there is such meat in these verses. I’m always excited to see what I consider proofs that Jesus is God the Son; not Jesus, a child of God like we are.

Joh 17:3  And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.

Joh 17:4  I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do.

Joh 17:5  And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed.

Jesus says here that He was with the Father and was glorified with God before the world existed. I don’t know how much clearer He could make it. That is why in the Gospels we can read that Jesus received praise – which infuriated the Pharisees and they called Him a blasphemer for receiving praise. Only God deserved to receive praise. Jesus knew that and they knew that. They chose to not believe that Jesus was the Son of God, the Messiah.

Mat 21:13  He said to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you make it a den of robbers.”

Mat 21:14  And the blind and the lame came to him in the temple, and he healed them.

Mat 21:15  But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying out in the temple, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” they were indignant,

Mat 21:16  and they said to him, “Do you hear what these are saying?” And Jesus said to them, “Yes; have you never read, “‘Out of the mouth of infants and nursing babies you have prepared praise’?”

What do you think?

May God bless you!

 

Psalms to Live By

Psa 84:1, (JPS)  (84:1) For the Leader; upon the Gittith. A Psalm of the sons of Korah.   (84:2) How lovely are Thy tabernacles, O LORD of hosts!

Psa 84:2  (84:3) My soul yearneth, yea, even pineth for the courts of the LORD; my heart and my flesh sing for joy unto the living God.

Psa 84:3  (84:4) Yea, the sparrow hath found a house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young; Thine altars, O LORD of hosts, my King, and my God – .

Psa 84:4  (84:5) Happy are they that dwell in Thy house, they are ever praising Thee. Selah

Psa 84:5  (84:6) Happy is the man whose strength is in Thee; in whose heart are the highways.

Psa 84:6  (84:7) Passing through the valley of Baca they make it a place of springs; yea, the early rain clotheth it with blessings.

Psa 84:7  (84:8) They go from strength to strength, every one of them appeareth before God in Zion.

Psa 84:8  (84:9) O LORD God of hosts, hear my prayer; give ear, O God of Jacob. Selah

Psa 84:9  (84:10) Behold, O God our shield, and look upon the face of Thine anointed.

Psa 84:10  (84:11) For a day in Thy courts is better than a thousand; I had rather stand at the threshold of the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.

Psa 84:11  (84:12) For the LORD God is a sun and a shield; the LORD giveth grace and glory; no good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly.

Psa 84:12  (84:13) O LORD of hosts, happy is the man that trusteth in Thee.

Not only did I get blessed by reading this psalm this afternoon, but then I read Psalm 86:11 – 13, (NKJV) and I had to write it in my notebook for a chance to read it again. So, here it is:

Teach me Your way, O Lord; I will walk in Your truth; Unite my heart to fear Your name. I will praise You, O Lord, my God, with all my heart, And I will glorify Your name forevermore. For great is Your mercy toward me, And You have delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol.

Then in Psalm 92: 12 – 15, (NKJV), it says, “The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree, He shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon. Those who are planted in the house of the Lord Shall flourish in the courts of our God. They shall bear fruit in old age; they shall be fresh and flourishing, To declare that the Lord is upright; He is my rock; and there is no unrighteousness in Him.”

Oh, hallelujah! What wonderful words preserved for us over thousands of years.

I read a book by Patricia MacLachlan, which I hope to write about Monday night. This book is entitled, Baby. I’ve read a few more of her titles. What a gift her writing is to me, and I would assume to many others.

I hope you can make it to your place of worship this week. You never know who might need to see your face. Be blessed!