Look at the grin on that face!
2 Samuel 12:16-14:33
I actually had a really great day today. We even took a quick trip to Meijer where Sean found the bike of his dreams. I posted a picture of it here on Facebook. (I can’t seem to get it on here for some reason.)
I LOVE the look on his face! He was like a kid in a candy store!
2 Samuel 3:26-7:29
OK, for any of you reading through the Bible in a year, we’re in the home stretch with less than a month left! 19 days to be exact! And I don’t know about you, but my 19 days are set to be packed!
I’ve got to tell you, I’m going to have to dig in deep to make it that far folks. You know how in the Olympics when the race is almost finished and you can see by your favorite runner’s face that they’re exhausted and they really have nothing left, so you cheer as loudly as you can to help them get across the finish line? I could really use that right now.
I am pouring almost everything I have into these kids, my own flesh and blood children and the ones at school and I’m left with little for spiritual blogging at the moment. Most days I simply don’t have the time because I’m working on homework for my classes. And the other days when I do have the time I don’t really have any inspiration, unless you want to hear about the lessons I’m planning for my classes. I’d love to tell you about my kiddos at school, but I think their privacy is more important than me sharing my joy with you.
I have gotten much satisfaction from working at the school with these kids who are AMAZING! The whole time I was working at Dollar General, it was nice and I had no real problems working there, but it wasn’t feeding my soul and I hated that about it. Here at the school my soul is overflowing with purpose and the satisfaction that comes from doing what God made me to do by using the talents that God bestowed on me. It’s frustrating and heart breaking and EXHAUSTING and I L O V E IT! I come home tired, but refreshed because I know that I made a difference today for them.
So while I love writing and blogging and I cherish you all to pieces, it’s hard for me to keep putting effort and time into something where I get no feedback. At school I can see their smiling faces telling me that what I’m doing is working. I don’t get that here. And for the last seven years talking to the brick wall of cyberspace has been OK because it’s fulfilled a need that I had. But now that I’m at the school, I’m not so sure that I’m going to be blogging through the Bible in a Year again.
Oh, I’ll still have the blog! But I’m acutally hoping to have my own classroom next year and I would be using the blog to keep in touch with students and parents. No real decisions have been made, and yet, in my heart I know that’s where things are headed. So I guess I’m giving you advance warning that things are going to be changing again around here. 😉 Perhaps you could consider this my three week notice that I’m… well I’m not quitting… actually I’m not sure exactly what I’m going to be doing to be completely honest. But I can feel it, things are going to be different… and yet blissfully the same as they always have been. Whatever that means, I have no idea! But isn’t that part of being a follower of Christ? We never know what exactly is going on, and yet we know that we can trust whatever comes next because it comes from the hand of the Father who loves us. Isn’t that amazingly comforting?
I can face tomorrow because I know who holds the future in His hands. Jesus. The One who died for me! And YOU!
It’s funny, I don’t know if any of you are feeling this way right now, but I feel like I’ve only got a few pages left in the book I’m living before the next volume begins. It’s not a new chapter, it’s a whole new book with a new title and new white hardbacked covers. I don’t know if God will let us see the Table of Contents or if He will keep those a secret, but I’m pretty sure this new book is going to be a good one!
“There is nothing hidden from the king.” 2 Samuel 18:13
In Genesis 16 we find the story of Hagar. Having been abused by Sarai, her master, Hagar fled from her. At a well in the wilderness, an angel came to Hagar and spoke over her unborn child. He told her that she would have a boy and to name him Ishmael which means, “God hears”. The angel blessed her and her son and commanded her to return to her master. So Hagar said to the angel of the LORD, “You are a God who sees me.”
Beloved, God sees you. There is nothing hidden from the King of kings. There is nowhere where you can hide from Him. There is no mountain high enough where He can’t find you. You can not flee to the depths of the sea and not be seen by His love. Even there His hand shall lead you and His right hand shall hold you. If you say, “surely the darkness will cover me, and even the light around me is like night,” even the darkness isn’t dark to Him; the night is bright as the day, for the darkness is as light to Him. There is nothing that can separate you from His love for you through Christ Jesus. Not one single thing.
As mothers we all too often hold ourselves to a standard we simply can not achieve. We look around us and see everyone else’s best qualities and then sew them together into a quilt of guilt for ourselves where we can’t ever quite measure up. We see the mom who always looks perfect and beat ourselves up for not being pretty enough. We can’t see that she cries herself to sleep at night because she’s found out her husband looks at porn instead of her. Even she’s not pretty enough.
We look at the mom who’s always so peaceful and serene with her kids and beat ourselves for losing our temper and screaming at our kids. We miss the moment when she locked herself in the bathroom because she was too overwhelmed and needs five minutes of PEACE. Even she’s not peaceful enough.
We read the highlight reel of Facebook and judge our blooper reel against it. We are not fair to ourselves. We judge ourselves by standards that no one can live up to. We see perfection in everyone BUT ourselves. The truth is that NO ONE is perfect except Jesus. No one can do everything. No one can be everything to everyone. No one can be someone to the whole world. But you CAN be someone’s whole world. It’s called being a mom.
There is no one in this whole planet that is going to love you and look up to you the way your children do. You gave them LIFE, that’s not a small fact that escapes their attention, though it often escapes ours. We fail to remember the gigantic role we play in keeping these people alive and setting them up for the best possible future we can. Our children are the greatest gift we can possibly give mankind. They are the future and when we train them up in The Way they should go, when they are old they will not stray. And the best way to do that is to be a great role model.
What if, right now, I start teaching my daughter to judge herself fairly by modeling it for her? What if, instead of just telling her she’s capable of anything she puts her mind to, I show her. What if I start teaching my children the power of forgiveness by first forgiving myself?
I’M NOT PERFECT AND THAT’S OK!
I need to allow myself to fall short from time to time. And I can’t expect the glory of God from myself because that’s not going to happen. That’s just not how it works! The glory of God comes from GOD. It’s not something we can obtain, just ask Eve. Nor is it something that we should strive to attain. It’s His glory, and it will remain that way. The glory that IS ours is the glory that God created for us. It’s the glory of doing what God created us to do. In the way He created us to do it.
What’s so fun about going to the zoo? We go to watch the seals swim, the lions prowl and the monkeys monkeying around. We delight in watching the animals be animals and do what God created them to do. What if, for this year, we delight in doing what God created us to do – be moms.
You know those moments when we think we’re alone and we’re putting some special touch on something no one will ever see or notice? It’s in those moments that we must understand there is NOTHING hidden from the King. He sees your bathroom fears and your silent victories over them. He’s keeping track of each diaper changed, every rough tear-filled night, every sigh of frustration, He sees them all. He’s there through them all because He loves YOU!
No. You’re not the perfect mom.
No one is.
You ARE the perfect mom for your kids. You know how I know that? Because God chose YOU to be their mom! And God doesn’t make mistakes.
Happy Mother’s Day Mom!
“So Absalom stole the hearts of the men of Israel.” 2 Samuel 15:6
(The continuation of yesterday’s post):
The sixty-first chapter of Isaiah details the favor of the LORD**, the tenth verse says, “I will greatly rejoice in the LORD; my soul shall exult in my God, for He has clothed ME with the garment of salvation; He has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.”
My friend, YOU are that favorite son of the Father. YOU are that beloved daughter of the King. YOU are the Bride of Christ who has been given a robe of righteousness to wear. Did you know, there are two robes that are mentioned in the crucifixion of Jesus. The first is the scarlet robe that the soldiers put on Him to mock Him as king of the Jews. The second is the robe that the soldiers cast lots for at the foot of the cross. The first robe He wore as they mocked who He IS. They made fun of Him for claiming the Truth that He is the King of kings and the Lord of lords. And as we’ve read in Revelation that is the very name that is written on His thigh when He wears a white robe dipped in blood. The second robe He most likely wore throughout His entire ministry. It was a robe that according to John 19:23-24 was seamless. It hadn’t been sewn from several different pieces, but it had been woven seamlessly as a single piece of fabric. While the first robe represents Christ’s deity, the second robe represents His seamless perfection and holiness. A holiness that He has transferred onto YOUR shoulders my friend.
Romans 5:19 KJV says, “For as by one man’s disobedience many were made
sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made
righteous.” According to this verse your sins didn’t make you a sinner, Adam’s sin did. Likewise, your goodness doesn’t make you righteous, Jesus’ does!!! Beloved, your salvation doesn’t rest on your shoulders it rests in your heart and in your mouth. “For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.” (Romans 10:10) You need only to believe in your heart that Jesus is who He has said that He is and done what He said that He did and you are justified. Once that has happened and you truly believe it wrapping your whole heart around the Truth that Jesus died for YOU and saved YOU from eternal condemnation starting in this VERY MOMENT, well, I dare you to keep your mouth shut about it because you won’t be able to. I’m living proof of that! Once I finally wrapped my brain around the Truth that Jesus MADE me righteous, well, I’ve done everything I can to spread the word that YOU have been MADE righteous too.
It’s GOOD NEWS! That’s what the word “Gospel” means, good news. News that’s so good you can’t help but spread it around. News that’s so good you can’t help but to be changed by it. In fact, it’s news that’s so good it inspires you to BE good, to DO good, to SPEAK good. My friends, God isn’t good to you because you’re good. He’s good to you because HE IS GOOD. That’s who He is! And the second we start believing that our actions have the ability to diminish His ability or willingness to be good to us, is the moment we diminish who God is. We put Him in a box and tell Him that He’s only allowed to be “this good” to us because we’ve only been “this good”. But according to Romans 5:7-9 that’s not how God works. “For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God.” God can’t fit in a box; He’s too big and too great for that. We’ve got to stop putting limits on how much goodness we can expect from God. He’s a GOOD God, there is no end to His goodness and faithfulness and mercy.
2 Corinthians 5:21 says, “For our sake [God The Father] made [Jesus] to be sin who knew no sin, so that in [Jesus] we might become the righteousness of God.” Jesus died the death meant for us, so that we wouldn’t have to. Jesus paid the price on our heads because He knew that we couldn’t afford it. And in Him paying the price, WE reap the reward! Jesus was made sin so that we might be made righteous. We were sinners and He was righteous, but through the miracle of the cross He became a sinner and we became righteous through faith in His sacrifice on our behalf.
God isn’t good because you’re good. God’s good because HE IS GOOD.
Do you believe it? Then SPEAK it to someone today!
*(from yesterday’s post) What about all the colors? Light is composed of every color the eye is able to see and many that it isn’t. When we see the color white we’re seeing ALL the colors at the same time. White is the color of purity and righteousness. Hence if you’re wearing a white robe of righteousness you are wearing every color you could ever imagine and then some! A coat of many colors!
Is that what they meant when they translated Joseph’s coat had many colors, I doubt it. Does that mean that Joseph’s literal coat was white, I have no idea, but again I doubt it. It doesn’t sound very practical to this mom of two, for a shepherd boy to wear a white coat. But symbolically…. I LOVE IT! 😀
**While I don’t have the time or space to put it all in here I do recommend HIGHLY that you go through and read that chapter and declare those words spoken over YOU by the Lord God Almighty!
“Now she was wearing a long robe with sleeves, for thus were the virgin daughters of the king dressed.” 2 Samuel 13:18
As some of you might imagine I have a particular fondness to the stories of Tamar in the Bible. There are three of them, Tamar the daughter of Judah and mother of Perez and Zerah (Genesis 38), Tamar the daughter of David and Tamar the daughter of Absalom the son of David. Two of these Tamars are mentioned in today’s Word of the Day. The eldest Tamar’s story… well, it isn’t that great to be honest. She has a horrid thing done to her; her own half-brother violates her and then casts her aside like yesterday’s garbage. And yet in the midst of telling us this story the narrator mentions her robe with long sleeves. And at first glance I’ve always just assumed he was mentioning it because she tore it in mourning. But today, reading it in a new translation, I noticed a footnote that blew my mind. The robe that she was wearing is described with the same words as Genesis 37:3.
“Now Israel loved Joseph more than any other of his sons, because he was the son of his old age. And he made him a robe of many colors. *Footnote: a robe with long sleeves.”
I find this extremely intriguing. That the favorite son of the Father of the nation of Israel and the beloved daughter of king David, the man after God’s own heart BOTH wore robes of many colors that were characterized by their long sleeves. And what’s with the big deal that the sleeves were long?
Today’s Wednesday and I’m off work so I’ve got some time to actually dig into my research and WRITE, so I’m going to. I wanted to see if the same phrase was really used to describe both of these robes and what that phrase actually is. When I found it, I was not disappointed.
The phrase in Hebrew is transliterated as: “kethoneth pas”. Kethoneth is a tunic or under-garment; a long shirt-like garment usually of linen. It is from an unused root meaning to cover. OK, that makes sense, but when I looked up the meaning of pas I was in for a dramatic surprise. Expecting to see that pas mean color I was befuddled to see that it means, the flat (of the hand or foot), palm, sole; of the tunic reaching to palms and soles (figuratively). “Uhhhhh….. what???” I thought, “Where on earth do they get the translation that this special robe had many colors???” So I continued reading, by implication (plural) a long sleeved tunic (perhaps simply a wide one; from the original sense of the root, that is, of many breadths). OK, now I have this picture in my head of this beautiful virgin girl walking around in a robe that’s so long it covers her hands and feet when she walks and is so wide that it hides the curves of her body. Now THAT makes sense. Plus she’s a daughter of the King so you can imagine that this wasn’t any ordinary sheath dress with a simple fabric and no ornamentation, *pbbbft* NO WAY! I’m sure it was decked out with all kinds of fancy needlework and sequins and made of the finest linen or silk that money could buy, she was the daughter of the King after all. But, there was something that still just wasn’t lining up for me, what about the colors? There was a link to the root word and its definition, so I clicked on that to gain a little more insight. “Pasas: to disappear, vanish, cease, fail”. And BOOM like lightning it hit me what the significance of this robe is!
But you’ll have to wait until tomorrow to find out what that is. 😉
“And the LORD gave victory to David wherever he went.” 2 Samuel 8:14
There’s a verse that I live by that I think you should be aware of. It goes right along with this verse of the day about David’s victories. No matter where David went or who he was fighting, he had victory. It was the same for Joshua, “Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given to you, just as I promised Moses.” (Joshua 1:3)
Victory is part of being a friend of God. He is not a loser, God ALWAYS wins, period. And guess what, while David and Joshua and Moses had God with them, you have God IN you. My friends, it’s not just wherever you set your foot that you will have victory, it’s wherever you sit, wherever you stand, wherever your voice carries, it’s YOU. God’s presence lives in you just like it lived in the wilderness Tabernacle. His voice is your voice and His hands are your hands.
You may have heard of the Midas touch, well you’ve been given something much better. You’ve got a Divine Touch. Your hands have the power to heal the sick. Your voice has the power to mend soul-deep wounds. Your arms have the power to help the lost find their way, all because the Spirit of the Living God falls afresh on you each and every morning. His mercies are new and ready to save you from anything you may face during the day.
In Genesis when God calls Abram to leave his family and everything he’s ever known it’s not without a promise of benefit. God tells him that He will bless Abram so that he in turn can be a blessing to others. (Genesis 12:2) According to Galatians 3:29, “If you are Christ’s then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to the promise.” So if you have confessed that Jesus Christ is your Lord and Savior, then you are considered Abraham’s child and are eligible to benefit from the promise that God gave him.
The honest to goodness truth is that God WANTS to bless you. But He doesn’t want to just bless you. He wants to bless you so extravagantly that by blessing you He will be blessing those around you as well because they’re standing close enough to be splashed by the tidal wave of His Grace pouring over your head. How awesome is that???