It may be difficult for our human psyche to grasp the word everlasting. Our finite minds just cannot completely understand. It is forever and forever and forever…
I am reading Isaiah and part of this morning’s reading was Chapter 51:9-11:
“9 Awake, awake, put on strength, O arm of the LORD; awake, as in the ancient days, in the generations of old. Art thou not it that hath cut Rahab, and wounded the dragon? 10 Art thou not it which hath dried the sea, the waters of the great deep; that hath made the depths of the sea a way for the ransomed to pass over? 11 Therefore the redeemed of the LORD shall return, and come with singing unto Zion; and everlasting joy shall be upon their head: they shall obtain gladness and joy; and sorrow and mourning shall flee away.”
Now if those words do not get your hearts pounding with great hope for our eternal destiny as children of God Jehovah, I don’t know what ever would! And look at the last phrase – “sorrow and mourning shall flee away.” What great hope we have in God’s wonderful promises!
Oh my yes He is in control. He always has been and He always will be! Do those knuckleheads in our U.S. Congress not understand that?! Evidently not! I find it so very embarrassing to have the world see the complete and utter evil ignorance that is going on in our House Chamber for now over 3 years. All because they hate the man that God has placed in our White House because he is uncovering all of their crooked and corrupt policies that have made them so rich and powerful. Sadducees and Pharisees did the same garbage when Jesus came. BUT, the American people are not stupid as these evil ones in our congress would have us think! If you love America and you love the Lord God Jehovah, pray and get out and vote these fools out of office in 2020!
I am reading in Isaiah in my morning devotions and as I read Chapter 45, I could not help but see the similarities between when God used King Cyrus of Persia as His anointed vessel, and how He is using our President to accomplish His purpose. And, get this, King Cyrus did not even acknowledge Jehovah as God! Can we not understand that God always always always places those whom He wants in places of leadership in all the world’s countries/governments for His purpose.
It is obvious that the LORD has place our President Trump in position of President of the United States. I believe it has much to do with the remnant in this country of believers who are staying true to God and praying fervently for our country for the sake of our children and children’s children. We can hope that God will send His Son for His church soon, but in the meantime we must be about His work. Part of that work is getting His Gospel out and praying for our leaders.
Then there is the question, “Is Donald Trump a born again Christian?” Well it has been reported by very credible sources that he did, in fact, accept Jesus as his Lord and Saviour just prior to his winning the presidency. I believe he did, by his actions. But only he and God know that for sure. Do I like how he says things sometimes? Of course not. Remember, he is a babe in Christ and has much to learn. Either way, I see God’s hand directing our president and accomplishing so very much to truly make this country great again, and bring our awesome God back into so many areas that evil has used unbelievers to take Him out of; our schools for one.
I will add the Chapter 45 of Isaiah below for you to see for yourselves; if you truly know Jesus as Lord and Saviour and want to see truth.
In conclusion, I beg each and every one of my brethren to daily, fervently lift up our president and those who support him for guidance, direction, and power from the one and only true God Jehovah, to accomplish His purposes in our times!
Isa:45:1: Thus saith the LORD to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have holden, to subdue nations before him; and I will loose the loins of kings, to open before him the two leaved gates; and the gates shall not be shut; 2: I will go before thee, and make the crooked places straight: I will break in pieces the gates of brass, and cut in sunder the bars of iron: 3: And I will give thee the treasures of darkness, and hidden riches of secret places, that thou mayest know that I, the LORD, which call thee by thy name, am the God of Israel. 4: For Jacob my servant’s sake, and Israel mine elect, I have even called thee by thy name: I have surnamed thee, though thou hast not known me. 5: I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me: 6: That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the LORD, and there is none else. 7: I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things. 8: Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open, and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the LORD have created it. 9: Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth. Shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it, What makest thou? or thy work, He hath no hands? 10: Woe unto him that saith unto his father, What begettest thou? or to the woman, What hast thou brought forth? 11: Thus saith the LORD, the Holy One of Israel, and his Maker, Ask me of things to come concerning my sons, and concerning the work of my hands command ye me. 12: I have made the earth, and created man upon it: I, even my hands, have stretched out the heavens, and all their host have I commanded. 13: I have raised him up in righteousness, and I will direct all his ways: he shall build my city, and he shall let go my captives, not for price nor reward, saith the LORD of hosts. 14: Thus saith the LORD, The labour of Egypt, and merchandise of Ethiopia and of the Sabeans, men of stature, shall come over unto thee, and they shall be thine: they shall come after thee; in chains they shall come over, and they shall fall down unto thee, they shall make supplication unto thee, saying, Surely God is in thee; and there is none else, there is no God. 15: Verily thou art a God that hidest thyself, O God of Israel, the Saviour. 16: They shall be ashamed, and also confounded, all of them: they shall go to confusion together that are makers of idols. 17: But Israel shall be saved in the LORD with an everlasting salvation: ye shall not be ashamed nor confounded world without end. 18: For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else. 19: I have not spoken in secret, in a dark place of the earth: I said not unto the seed of Jacob, Seek ye me in vain: I the LORD speak righteousness, I declare things that are right. 20: Assemble yourselves and come; draw near together, ye that are escaped of the nations: they have no knowledge that set up the wood of their graven image, and pray unto a god that cannot save. 21: Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? who hath told it from that time? have not I the LORD? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me. 22: Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. 23: I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear. 24: Surely, shall one say, in the LORD have I righteousness and strength: even to him shall men come; and all that are incensed against him shall be ashamed. 25: In the LORD shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory.
God wants us to have a right understanding of self. When we let Him heal us, He gives us that understanding. Those who know me and my testimony are aware of my past abusive relationships. There were times that some would say to me, “No one can make you feel a certain way, it is up to you if you choose to feel ashamed or hurt or guilty.” To a point that may be true, but when you share your life with someone who repeatedly says abusive things to you and/or repeatedly physically abuses you, you will start to believe those things are true and that you deserve to be treated that way. When we decide that we do not deserve that treatment, and stick close to “the one who is closer than a brother,” and His Word, He will bring us up out of those relationships and lies that we end up believing about ourselves. God does not want us to be hurt by others and I do not believe He wants us to stay in those kinds of relationships.
Guilt is a God-given emotion that takes place when our mistakes and faults are revealed in our own minds or publicly exposed. It may be a personal reminder of our own limitations and sinfulness.
Shame, however, says that the individual person is bad, of no value, or unworthy to exist–that we are hopelessly abnormal, unlovable, of no value, and worthless. Shame begins externally with a subtle implication through silence and neglect or with verbal condemnation through words of abuse. When such messages are repeated often enough, whether through words or actions, they become internalized into a false belief about ourselves: “I must be bad to deserve such terrible treatment.” This becomes the heart and soul of our identity and the beginning of thousands of future, wrong choices for the one who is suffering from shame.
We can begin to heal from our shame when we identify and confess the lies that we have believed about ourselves. Then we must start to replace those lies from satan with God’s Biblical truths. Truths about who God is and who we are as His beloved children. We are of immeasurable worth in God’s eyes, righteous through the blood and Jesus and, therefore, without condemnation.
Romans 8:1 “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”
Romans 8:31-39 “What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
II Corinthians 5:17, 21 “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new…For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.”
Sometimes when we have been victimized over time, we become so shame-filled that we are emotionally bound by that shame, even though we may think that we mentally understand our worth in God’s eyes. Or, if we have actually committed shameful acts, a deep sense of shame may remain even after confession and repentance. Those acts, by others and/or by ourselves, must be brought into the presence of Jesus, and perhaps more than just one time. We need to remember that we suffered the abuse over a period of time, and it will not just go away suddenly. Ultimately, only God brings full emotional cleansing and freedom from such bondage.
I know that I would not be where I am in my walk with Jesus today had I not made the decision to leave the abuse relationship and cling to the Lord. There truly is a light at the end of the tunnel if we only trust Him.
There is a great song I love to sing and play on my guitar, “For Those Tears I Died”. The Isaacs do a great job on it:
Yes, it is so true that God knows every tear we cry and He feels our tears and cares about them.
We did get our house in Colorado sold and moved into our new home here in Amarillo on July 15th. We are nearly all settled in. It was quite an adventure that God was in total control of.
I am reading in the Psalms in my Bible at this point, and I was reminded of how God knows all about us, even every thought we have and every tear we cry. It had been a while, probably last year when I was reading the Psalms ;-), but I always receive something new each time I re-read any of God’s Word. Psalm 56:8 “Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book?” It is always a comfort to me when I read this Scripture, but especially at this time in my life. God cares so very much that He puts our tears in His bottle and in His book!
A couple of weeks ago I received word that my 20-year-old grandson has left this world; so so very young. I have been witnessing to him, trying to lead him to salvation for the past 2 years. He was part of a gang, and admitted “he did not know Jesus as Saviour as he did not believe in Heaven or Hell; just that things just happen and that’s the way it is.” I can only hope that the Lord reached him before he died and I will see him in Heaven.
I know that God’s Word does not return to Him void – Isaiah 55:6-11 “Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.“
ALL things are possible for Jehovah and He would that none should perish.
My heart hurts much for my daughter who had gone away from our Lord as well, but she is saved. I cannot even begin to imagine her pain. I share my love and the Scriptures with her as I am led by the Lord, as well as fervently lifting her up for mercy and that God place someone in her path that is very strong in Him who will help her come out of this horrible darkness she is in. I know with all of my heart that if there is a chance that she will be able to reach out to and help even one person through something like this, down the road, God will not let her leave yet.
I know that our tears are a cry from our hearts, and I pray that when my girl is ready to receive it, she will experience God’s mercy, comfort and presence. As her momma, I so wish I could make this go away for her, but I must leave her in the hands of our loving, capable, and merciful God Jehovah.
I understand that we are all brought to tears at different times in our lives, for many different reasons. Tears have always been closely spun together with the human heart and may express such various emotions as grief and joy. God’s Word has much to say on this matter.
In the Old Testament, tears were often an expression of remorse – Lamentations 2:18, 19 “Their heart cried unto the LORD, O wall of the daughter of Zion, let tears run down like a river day and night: give thyself no rest; let not the apple of thine eye cease. Arise, cry out in the night: in the beginning of the watches pour out thine heart like water before the face of the LORD: lift up thy hands toward him for the life of thy young children, that faint for hunger in the top of every street.”
Esther wept with a troubled soul over the predicament of her people – Esther 8:3 “And Esther spake yet again before the king, and fell down at his feet, and besought him with tears to put away the mischief of Haman the Agagite, and his device that he had devised against the Jews.”
Hannah shed tears from a grieving heart and a bitter soul – I Samuel 1:8, 10 “Then said Elkanah her husband to her, Hannah, why weepest thou? and why eatest thou not? and why is thy heart grieved? am not I better to thee than ten sons? And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the LORD, and wept sore.”
Mary and Martha wept over the loss of their brother Lazarus – John 11:31 “The Jews then which were with her in the house, and comforted her, when they saw Mary, that she rose up hastily and went out, followed her, saying, She goeth unto the grave to weep there.”
The sinful woman at the feet of Christ shed tears, not from remorse, anxiety, or grief, but rather in humility as a grateful response to God’s mercy and love toward her in spite of her sin – Luke 7:38-50 “And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment. Now when the Pharisee which had bidden him saw it, he spake within himself, saying, This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner. And Jesus answering said unto him, Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And he saith, Master, say on. There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefore, which of them will love him most? Simon answered and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most. And he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged. And he turned to the woman, and said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head. Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet. My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment. Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little. And he said unto her, Thy sins are forgiven. And they that sat at meat with him began to say within themselves, Who is this that forgiveth sins also? And he said to the woman, Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace.”
Every one of us will experience circumstances in our lives that will move us to tears. In those times, we must hold fast to the promise that a day is coming when God will wipe away all tears – Revelation 7:17 “For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.” Revelation 21:4 “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.” And Isaiah 25:8 says, “He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for the LORD hath spoken it.” (And God cannot and does not lie!)
Until that glorious day comes to us, may we each have a desire for tears of repentance, adoration, thankfulness, and joy!
Well, I just have to share this. It is spot on as usual. I may be quiet for a bit as we have sold our house here in Colorado and are moving to Amarillo, TX. Praying this truly is our last move! 😉 Blessings, Anna
Damaris was a woman from Athens who became a believer in Jesus after she heard Paul’s sermon at Mars’ Hill, the highest court in Athens – Acts 17:19 “And they took him, and brought him unto Areopagus, saying, May we know what this new doctrine, whereof thou speakest, is?” She was an idol worshiper who heard, and accepted by faith, Paul’s message, while the disbelieving crowds belittled him and called him a “babbler.” (Acts 17:18)
We have to wonder who this womanly spectator was who listened so intently to Paul’s preaching at the Areopagus. Scripture mentions her in the same verse with the Athenian judge, Dionysius. This suggests that she was quite a woman of distinction and prominence. She could have been one of the hetairoi (a group of intellectual women who associated with philosophers and politicians), and as free women, they may have been part of such a gathering as this one at Mars’ Hill.
On the other hand, Luke, the author of Acts, refers to Damaris merely as “a woman,” which, though unlikely in this setting and context, could have implied that she was a “public woman,” perhaps one of low moral character, or even a prostitute. Refined, respectable women of that day would not usually attend a public gathering such as the one Paul addressed – Acts 17:22 – “Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious.”
Whether Damaris was a prominent woman or a public woman, she listened carefully to the Gospel message of Salvation. Then, with rare courage and God-given wisdom, she chose to oppose the mocking debaters and to express her commitment to the resurrected Christ! (And God is no respecter of persons. He will use whom He will, whomever is willing to share His Gospel.) Like other believing women, Damaris became more than just a spectator of Paul’s ministry. She became a teammate, a woman in the early church who helped to further the Cause of Christ. The power of God’s Holy Spirit moves in each of His children, when we are willing and obedient, to give courage and strength and a burning desire to share the Good News without fear!
Throughout God’s Word there are accounts of how He chose to use women for His glory: Abigail, Esther, Ruth, Deborah, Mary, and many others. What an honor!
As Children of God, we are to trust God and let Him guide us in choosing a profession. This will always make our lives and our work much easier and more enjoyable, for He knows all things about us and about our lives that we do not know. The Bible provides many examples of professions and jobs. In most instances, professions in the Old Testament were “inherited” or passed down from father to son or mother to daughter in a mentoring manner or apprenticeship relationship. On occasion, a person’s special talents in a particular area or the call of God on a person’s life were noted, and the person was then singled out for a unique position, as when Deborah became a judge of Israel – Judges 4:4, 5 “And Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lapidoth, she judged Israel at that time. And she dwelt under the palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in mount Ephraim: and the children of Israel came up to her for judgment.”
In the New Testament, women and men enjoyed much more independence in choosing a line of work or a profession. Lydia was a notable businesswoman in the textile industry – Acts 16:14 “And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira, which worshipped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul.” Dorcas was a well-respected seamstress – Acts 9:39 “Then Peter arose and went with them. When he was come, they brought him into the upper chamber: and all the widows stood by him weeping, and shewing the coats and garments which Dorcas made, while she was with them.” And, Priscilla worked in the ten-making trade – Acts 18:2, 3 “And found a certain Jew named Aquila, born in Pontus, lately come from Italy, with his wife Priscilla; (because that Claudius had commanded all Jews to depart from Rome:) and came unto them. And because he was of the same craft, he abode with them, and wrought: for by their occupation they were tentmakers.”
The New Testament believers understood that their entire lives were subject to God’s command and direction, including their choices of careers. They fully relied on the Holy Spirit both for direction and timing. They did not regard their “career paths” as something that they must engineer on their own, rather, they looked at it as something that flowed naturally from a person’s talents and abilities and in response to opportunities that came into their lives. We are to be motivated in our work by a desire to use our abilities to their fullest for the glory of God, rather than being motivated by positions on corporate ladders, work incentives, higher salaries, or cultural standards of prestige and status.
The Bible clearly warns against worshiping the work of our hands or exalting what we have created or earned to the place of supreme honor in our lives. God is to have that place. Psalms 115:1-8 “Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy, and for thy truth’s sake. Wherefore should the heathen say, Where is now their God? But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased. Their idols are silver and gold, the work of men’s hands. They have mouths, but they speak not: eyes have they, but they see not: They have ears, but they hear not: noses have they, but they smell not: They have hands, but they handle not: feet have they, but they walk not: neither speak they through their throat. They that make them are like unto them; so is every one that trusteth in them.” they are nothing. Jeremiah 25:6, 7 – “And go not after other gods to serve them, and to worship them, and provoke me not to anger with the works of your hands; and I will do you no hurt. Yet ye have not hearkened unto me, saith the LORD; that ye might provoke me to anger with the works of your hands to your own hurt.”
If we keep our Lord God Jehovah first in all things, all else will fall into place. One of my favorite verses is Matthew 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” That really does say it all.