book #7 in the series

One Flesh, One Spirit

Judges 17:1-20:17

“Then the Spirit of the LORD rushed upon him,” Judges 14:6

In Genesis 4:1 it says, “Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain”. Now, for the sake of propriety, so that I don’t have to keep tossing uncomfortable things into your lap, let’s come to an understanding. I propose to you a concept that may be a bit foreign at first, but I can attest to the Truth of this from my very own personal experience. Jesus is the second Adam, we, His bride are the second Eve. Jesus wants to have an intimate relationship with us; He wants to “know” us like Adam knew Eve. (Whispered aside: You get what I’m meaning there right? He wants to have spiritual sex and spiritual babies with you.) But, being the gentleman that Jesus is, He will not force Himself on you. However, know this, He longs for you with a longing that is absolutely unparalleled with anything we can understand here on this planet at this time.

In Genesis we see God creating Eve from Adam, the symbol of what was happening and what was to come; Jesus and His Bride – you. “So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. And the rib that the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. Then the man said, ‘This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.’ Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.” (2:21-25)

Oh there is so much here I want to point out to you!!! The first three chapters of Genesis are so rich they simply drip honey! Let’s take this a little nibble at a time and really savor it shall we?

“The LORD caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man”, did Jesus fall into a “deep sleep”? You betcha He did! One that lasted three days in a tomb!!! Go ahead, take a breath and scream Hallelujah for a few minutes before you move onto the next nibble, it’s Ok, I can wait. He is worthy of the praise, give it to Him.

“And while he slept took one of His ribs” – for this nibble I take you to John 19:31-37, “Since it was the day of Preparation, and so that the bodies would not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked pilate that their legs might be broken and that they might be taken away. So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who had been cruicified with him. But when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead [or in a “deep sleep”], they did not break his legs. But one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water. He who saw it has borne witness his testimony is true, and he knows that he is telling the truth- that you also may believe. For these things took place that the Scripture might be fulfilled; ‘Not one of his bones will be broken.’ And again another Scripture says, ‘They will look on Him whom they have pierced’.”

My friend, where are the rib bones located? The side right? And right here we have two prophecies of the Christ that detail his death referring to bones and His side that was pierced. Did God pierce Adam’s side to remove a rib bone while he was sleeping? You bethca! Oh mama this is getting good!

“and closed up its place with flesh.” – Beloved, what are we made of? What was it that Adam exclaimed when he saw Eve for the first time? That she was “bone of his bone and flesh of his flesh”. That hole that was created in Adam, in Jesus, with the removal of the rib – it was closed up with flesh, you. You complete Him. A relationship with Him closes up the wound in His side.

There is another mention of a man whom God placed into a deep sleep; I’d like to take a side glace at him and his story for a moment if you will indulge me that pleasure. We’ll flip over a few pages to Genesis 15 where we find the story of God cutting a covenant with Abram. God promises Abram that he will be the father of many nations, that his very own son shall be his heir, and that the land they are standing in will someday belong to his children. Abram asks for something, some way for him to know that God will fulfill this huge promise to him. So God tells him to go get a bunch of sacrificial animals and cut them in half placing the halves on the ground with space between them enough to walk through. This is what is known as cutting a covenant, where the two parties walk through the trail of blood as a symbol or a guarantee that they will fulfill their promise and do what they said they would do. In verse 12 we find that, “As the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell on Abram.” Then God says “Know for certain…” and then proclaims the prophecy of Abram’s children and their future. “When the sun had gone down and it was dark, behold, a smoking fire pot and a flaming torch passed between these pieces. On that day the LORD made a covenant with Abram,” (15:17-18) Oh sweet Jesus help me convey this message and may it be received with clarity! My friends know for certain that the God of Abram keeps His promises! He is a fire, a flaming torch in our souls to which sinners are drawn to like moths to a flame. In the parable of the ten virgins, some manuscripts translate their lamps, to be flaming torches!

This little light of mine, I’m going to hold it high!

Back to our nibbles of Truth, “She shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” Let’s recap quickly here, we the Church are the Bride, Eve, Woman; Jesus, our husband the second Adam is Man. You were knit together in your mother’s womb, fearfully and wonderfully made in HIS image. God formed flesh around Christ’s bone and presented you to Jesus as His bride.

“Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” In 1 Corinthians 6:16&17 we read, “For, as it is written, ‘The two will become one flesh.’ But he who is joined to the LORD becomes one spirit with him.” Flip to Romans 5 verse 5&6 and you’ll find, “God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.” Then take a look at 2 Corinthians 1:18-22, “As surely as God is faithful, our word to you has not been Yes and No. For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, whom we proclaimed among you, Silvanus and Timothy and I, was not Yes and No, but in him it is always Yes. For all the promises of God find their yes in him. That is why it is through Him that we utter our Amen to God for His glory. And it is god who establishes us with you in Christ, and has anointed us, and who has also put His seal on us and given us His Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee [or down payment].” Ephesians 1:13-14 reads, “In Him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.”

My Beloved friend, through Adam you were destined to a virgin death, but through Christ and the cross you have been redeemed and are offered Jesus as your husband for all eternity! And His Holy Spirit seals the deal just like an engagement ring seals a betrothal. And while we must wait for the wedding day to know Him face to face and live in His house forever, we don’t have to wait a second longer to know His Spirit! His Spirit came down on the day of Pentecost in divided, or individual, tongues of fire that rested over each individual’s head, a visual sign for future generations of what was happening spiritually; a filling of the Holy Spirit. And when onlookers, attracted by the great sound that this made, came and asked what was going on Peter said to them, “Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.” Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to Himself.” (Acts 2:36-39) Mmmm… now while some may argue that the Holy Spirit, speaking in tongues and prophecy was for that generation alone I hold up Peter’s statement. Who was the promise for? Yes, the people he was talking to, and their children (still in their bodies) but who else was it for? ALL who are far off, EVERYONE whom the Lord our God calls to Himself.

Are you a lost coin? Are you far off from the Lord? Are you questioning if you might be part of “everyone” whom the Lord calls to Himself? Are you reading this? Then you ARE part of everyone, you are part of the “all” who were far off. For over thirty years I walked this earth wishing that God still did miracles like the day of Pentecost. And in one day, a few short hours I learned the truth, He still does. For all those years I thought the gift of tongues through the Holy Spirit was just for the sacred few that were privileged to walk the streets with Jesus side by side. I didn’t know, I’d never been told that really is that real. I’d never been taught that He really does make the impossible possible; not just then, but NOW! Here! In me! In the last few years my eyes have only barely been opened to the true power of the Holy Spirit and His workings. I’ve only barely dipped my toes into how He works and lives through us and in us, but I can tell you that even just barely dipping my toes in has changed my life forever!!! I will never be the same in Jesus’ name! His love through the gift of His Spirit has transformed me into a new creation. By inviting Jesus into my life I became saved from eternal condemnation and judgment for my sins for all time. But by digging deeper and inviting His Holy Spirit into, not only my life but my flesh I have become one flesh with Him! The two became one! And in that union of Spirit and flesh I have just begun to experience the truly abundant life that Jesus speaks of. And it’s so much less about an abundance of prosperity and material possessions, as it is about an abundance of His PRESENCE! Because of His Spirit indwelling within my flesh I can know for certain that I have everything that He has promised me. I can know for certain that His love is for me, individually, personally.


This reading has been an excerpt from Tamar’s book Waiting…, if you would like to read more it is available HERE in multiple formats.

Categories: 365 Life, Jesus Loves YOU, Judges, Waiting | Leave a comment

Virgin Daughters

Judges 13:15-16:31

“Alas, my daughter!” Judges 11:35

In today’s section of reading we meet Jephthah, a prostitute’s son whom the LORD has chosen to be a Judge of Israel for six years. In the middle of today’s reading we find Jephthah with the Holy Spirit upon him, uttering a vow that makes me question what in the world he was thinking when he utters it. “If you will give the Ammonites into my hand, then whatever comes out from the doors of my house to meet me when I return in peace from the Ammonites shall be the LORD’s, and I will offer it up for a burnt offering.” Judges 11:30-31

Honestly, what did he expect to come out of his door to greet him? A chicken??? But there it is, all the same. And as we read down the paragraph we see the victory over the Ammonites and we cringe when Jephthah’s daughter walks out of the door with her little tambourines. His only child, I can’t even begin to imagine how he felt at that moment. As I read about this virgin daughter mourning with her friends for two months I began to think of all the budding young women in my own life. The thought of their sweet lives being cut short brought me to tears. And in that moment I questioned God “Why”. Why is this story in here? What message could it possible have? God doesn’t always answer all my questions, but in this case He did answer some.

Jephthah’s daughter spent two months mourning, but she wasn’t mourning the loss of her life, she was mourning her virginity. This really stuck out to me. I put myself in her shoes at that time in history; a woman’s purpose in life was to get married and bear children, as many as possible. When a man or a woman was murdered the murderer was responsible for more than just the life of the man or woman, they were held responsible for the lives of all the children still within the body of the deceased. So this young girl was mourning so much more than the life she was no longer going to get to live, she was mourning for the man she would no longer be joined with and the children she would never get to hold. Her virginity represented so much more than we today could understand. (I could write on THAT all day! But I won’t today because I already have in my book, True Intimacy!)

As tearful as I already was over the thought of my own virgin daughters’ death, I plunged forward into the deeper waters of the Word. There was more here I could feel it, and I wanted to find it. Why is this story here, what possible deeper meaning could it hold other than simply a tragic story of a father’s quick tongue? I prayed in tongues, seeking the Holy Spirit’s guidance in knowing the deeper truths, hidden and waiting for those willing to look for them. Connections like these don’t come from human wisdom; they come straight from God Himself. And as I prayed the connection played out before my eyes and I sobbed at the Truth. We all were that virgin daughter, once upon a time, destined to a death without having known a man and children.

Humanity was created to be the Bride of Christ, but through original sin we became destined for a virgin death. Because of sin, our path led to a death where we had never known the caress of a Man who loves us tenderly, a death where we would never know what it was like to be united as one flesh with the One. Because of sin we would never know what it would be like to birth spiritual children and watch them grow and mature in the faith. And because of sin there are some out there today that will still die not knowing or having experienced any of those things. This truth breaks my heart into a million tiny pieces.

In Luke 15 we find a trio of parables. The story starts with the Pharisees and scribes grumbling about Jesus saying “This man receives sinners and eats with them”. (Gasp! The horror!) Jesus responds to their grumbling with these three parables, the lost sheep, the lost coin and the lost son (or better known as the prodigal son). All three things lost from the sight of the one who tends and cares for them. I’d like to take a closer look at the parable of the lost coin in order to better flesh out the parable of the death of Jephthah’s virgin daughter.

The Lost Coin:

“What woman, having ten silver coins, if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp and sweep the house and seek diligently until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin that I had lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” Luke 15:8-10

In the original Greek version of this parable the silver coins were Drachmas which were worth about a day’s wages. So let’s say she had a decent job and made roughly $10/hour, and worked 8 hours a day so she lost a coin worth about $80! Is that a pretty big deal? If you lost a birthday check for $80 would you scour the house looking for it? Absolutely! But what if it meant more to her than that? What if, as some scholars say, that Drachma was part of her dowry? At that time it wasn’t uncommon for a woman to wear her dowry around her neck as a necklace. Without a dowry it was extremely difficult to get a husband. There’s a decent chance that this lost coin was from the chain around her neck and was part of her dowry, hence the frantic search to find it! That one coin was worth so much more than just a day’s wages to this woman, it was worth a husband and children. It was hope and a future to her! She was willing to do whatever it took to find that lost coin.

In Matthew chapter 25 we find another parable about ten virgins: “Then the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them, but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. As the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and slept. But at midnight there was a cry, ‘Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ Then all those virgins rose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the wise answered, saying, ‘Since there will not be enough for us and for you, go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.’ And while they were going to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was shut. Afterward the other virgins came also, saying. ‘Lord, lord, open to us.’ But he answered, ‘Truly, I say to you, I do not know you.’ Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.”

In this parable there are ten virgins, five with oil for their lamps and five with out. Throughout the Bible oil is a symbol of the Holy Spirit. So these women represent servants of Christ, five with the Holy Spirit and five without. While praying and meditating over this verse God reminded me of Isaiah 10:17 “the Light of Israel will be for a fire, and his Holy One for a flame; it will burn and devour His thorns and His briars in one day.”

What was the purpose of the oil in this parable? To burn in their lamps to create fire that brings light to the darkness surrounding them. Without the oil for their lamps there could be no flame, no light. My friends, the Holy Spirit is the fuel for our fires, the fires that burn within us causing us to glow with the Light of the Truth in a world filled with darkness and lies. The Holy Spirit is our seal, our promise, not of just what is to come, but has come and is already here! Jesus tells us that He came, not just for Light, but for abundant LIFE! Light nor abundant Life are possible without the Holy Spirit living and breathing His life into our flesh. Just like in the parable, the virgins without oil and light weren’t admitted to the party, people who call themselves Christian but have not invited the Holy Spirit to live in their hearts won’t be allowed through those pearly gates of heaven. (Boy this is hard for me to tell you!!!)

In the gospel of Matthew we find Jesus saying “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you workers of lawlessness.'” (7:21-23) That word “knew” in Greek is the word “gino-sko” and according to the Thayer Greek dictionary is also a Jewish idiom for sexual intercourse between a man and a woman. (Woo, is it getting warm?)

This reading has been an excerpt from Tamar’s book Waiting…, if you would like to read more it is available HERE in multiple formats.

Categories: 365 Life, Jesus Loves YOU, Judges, Waiting | Leave a comment


Judges 9:42-13:14

Today is another video day! Yay!!! J

You can watch the video, Handprints of God, here.

The video guide PDF is here.

And this is the reading:

“Who is the man who will begin to fight against the Ammonites?” Judges 10:18

Who will fight for us against our enemies? 2 Corinthians 5:4-5 says, “For while we are still in this tent, we groan, being burdened – not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.” I want my mortality to be swallowed up like Jonah in the whale that brings us onto the shores of LIFE! In the garden of Eden Adam and Eve hid from the presence of God because of their nakedness. Jonah heard God calling to him in the night and ran from Him in fear that God would do what He always does, forgive. We run and hide from God, why? Because of His forgiveness, His love for us is so intense that we struggle to fathom it; we wrestle with His goodness and His impossible plans for us because we can’t do them by ourselves! We can’t understand them. We can’t help but be scared of them. But there is nowhere where we can run that He can not follow. There is nowhere where we can hide that He can not find us. There is nothing that we can do that He can’t forgive and fix! He is so immaculate that we cover our eyes at the very sound of His coming! And yet He comes for us and finds us all the same.

On the day of the cross, when Jesus took all our sins upon Himself and took our punishment for us, He wore a crown of thorns upon His precious head. Those thorns were no ordinary thorns, well physically they were, but spiritually they were so much more than the mockery they were intended to be. Look at Genesis chapter 3 for a moment and you will find the curse that God pronounced upon all mankind.

The LORD God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, cursed are you above all livestock and above all beasts of the field; on your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life. I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring (or seed, depending on which translation you read) and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.” To the woman he said, “I will surely multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children. Your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.” And to Adam he said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, ‘You shall not eat of it,’ cursed is the ground because of you; in pain you shall eat of it all the days of your life; thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you; and you shall eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread, till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for you are dust, and to dust you shall return.” (verses 14-19)

Did you see them? There were several things in that curse that called back to what we’ve been reading this week. Let’s start at the beginning. The offspring of the woman will bruise her enemy’s head. Judges chapter 4, the woman drove a tent spike through her enemy’s skull!!! Judges chapter 9 verse 53 another woman threw an upper millstone on Abimelech’s head and crushed his skull. These girls have got moxy!

The next one, well, I don’t know how much it applies to you, but I certainly know how it applies to me! In the parable of the Sower we learned that seed is a symbol of words. In this curse it mentions the seed of the serpent and the seed of the woman. The ESV uses the word offspring, but the original Hebrew word literally means the sowing of seed, as in offspring. I find it interesting that the sowing of seed is mentioned in the serpent’s curse, and then the bearing of children is mentioned in the woman’s curse. Perhaps, just perhaps, they are connected somehow. As a writer, I am constantly sowing seeds and praying that they fall on the fertile soil in your heart. But I can tell you from personal experience that the birthing of those seeds is painful in ways that you would never expect. I certainly never expected it when I agreed that I would do this! But God has promised that when we sow in tears we will reap in laughter, and I’m counting on that!!! The truths that I pour out to you through these pages have caused me great pain in the finding of them. Now, like any mother, I’m not complaining of the pain of this child birthing… but I will certainly not discount it either! Simply because my pain is for your benefit, and mine! My toiling to learn these truths is for His glory and pleasure as it builds a bridge that spans the gap between Him and us! And any pain is worth that. (I may regret having just said that…)

And now we come to the man’s part of the curse, it begins with an outward nod to the words that were cloaked in symbolic meaning through the first two curses, it is revealed fully here. “Because you have listened to the voice (the words or seed) of your wife.” While some may not agree with me, I believe this phrase to be much less about who spoke the words and more about the fact that it was not the voice of God that the man listened to, but someone else’s. The entire Bible is a testimony, a plea from God Almighty for us to believe His word to us. To trust in what He says instead of trusting the things our eyes see around us, the other voices hissing in our ears trying to get us to do anything BUT what God has said to do, or not do as the case may be. So while many would love to put the emphasis of this verse on the woman’s part of the whole ordeal, in my womanly opinion, it’s about where Adam’s belief ended up. He chose to follow someone other than God. And because of that the ground itself was cursed. The very dust that Adam came from was no longer going to bear much fruit, but rather it would bear thorns and thistles. By the sweat of his face he would eat bread until he returned from where he came… dust.

Oh my friends, we can’t look at this as a curse for us today! Why? Because today for us, it is a BLESSING! If we were still in the book of Adam we would look at this and mourn, but we are no longer a page in the book of Adam. In the moment we chose to follow Christ we were ripped from that book and placed within the covers of the Book of Life. Jesus did many prophetic things on the day He died; one of those things was to wear a crown of thorns. Those thorns represented that first curse pronounced onto mankind… and its reversal! Jesus, who knew no sin, became sin for us; so that we, who knew much sin, could become like Him. He was cursed for our transgressions, crushed for our sin; the punishment that was for us was upon HIM and by His wounds we are HEALED! He took THAT punishment for us! That first curse and every one of them after that He poured them out upon Himself for us! Hallelujah! And because of Jesus we can look at words like “He will crown our efforts with success” and realize that they are the truth! Our efforts are no longer crowned with thorns, but with success!!!

That day on the cross Jesus took upon Himself the curse of thorns and it died with Him. Look at some verses that speak of this:

Isaiah 55:13 “Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress tree and instead of the briar shall come up the myrtle tree; and it shall be to the Lord for a name for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.”

Isaiah 10:17 “the Light of Israel will be for a fire, and his Holy One for a flame; it will burn and devour His thorns and His briars in one day.”

OK, I have to admit, I am especially fond of that last verse, the image of the curse of thorns burning up in the bright flame of Jesus’ love for us on the cross is so breathtakingly beautiful isn’t it?!? Yes, the LORD will fight for us, we need only to be still.


This reading has been an excerpt from Tamar’s book Waiting…, if you would like to read more it is available HERE in multiple formats.

Categories: 365 Life, Jesus Loves YOU, Judges, Waiting, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Leave a comment


Judges 1:1-3:31

Now the angel of the LORD went up from Gilgal to Bochim. And he said, “I brought you up from Egypt and brought you into the land that I swore to give to your fathers, I said, ‘I will never break my covenant with you, and you shall make no covenant with the inhabitants of this land; you shall break down their altars.’ But you have not obeyed my voice. What is this you have done? So now I say, I will not drive them out before you, but they shall become thorns in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare to you.” Judges 2:3

Immediately as my eyes fell on the phrase “thorns in your sides”, my brain perked up. I’ve seen this phrase before, just yesterday in Joshua 23:11-13

“Be very careful, therefore, to love the LORD your God. For if you turn back and cling to the remnant of these nations remaining among you and make marriages with them, so that you associate with them and they with you, know for certain that the LORD your God will no longer drive out these nations before you, but they shall be a snare and a trap for you, a whip on your sides and thorns in your eyes, until you perish from off this good ground that the LORD your God has given you.”

So now the LORD my God has me curious, I know of a few other places in the Bible that I’ve seen this phrase, but where else could it be and what exactly is He trying to tell me through the thorns today?

So, I started with a simple word search through www.BibleGateway.com. There were 53 instances of the word “thorn” in both the New and Old Testament, several of them looked familiar while others were new. Numbers 33:55 sounded mighty familiar, I wonder why… “But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then those of them whom you let remain shall be as barbs in your eyes and thorns in your sides, and they shall trouble you in the land where you dwell.” I was beginning to see the theme here! In each mention of the thorns, so far, God is talking about driving out the current inhabitants of the promised land. Hmmmm… I think it’s time to dig a bit deeper into this my friends.

In studying the Bible there is something each student must remember, the Bible defines itself. What I mean is, if something in the Bible reaches out and grabs your attention look at where else in the Bible it might be mentioned. By doing this the Bible will end up explaining itself. For example, the word thorn literally jumped off the page at me today, grabbed me by the neck and said “pay attention to ME!” And while I can glean quite a bit of information from that one mention of the word “thorn” in today’s reading. I will glean considerably more if I look at all the other stories where the word “thorn” is mentioned. Another example of this is in Jesus’ telling of the parable of the Sower and the Seed. In Mark chapter 4 we find Jesus teaching from a boat just off shore to a very large crowd. He shares with them the parable of a farmer, or sower, who goes out to his field to sow his seed. As he tosses the seed on the ground, some of the seed falls on the path where the birds come along and eat it. Some of the seed falls on rocky ground where it quickly grows but then whithers just as quickly because it has no root. Some of the seed falls among thorns and they grow up around the seed choking it and causing the seed to yield no grain. But then there is the seed that falls on the good fertile soil that produces grain and yields a huge harvest for the famer. After the crowd has left for the day and Jesus is left alone with his twelve closest disciples they ask Him about the parable and its meaning. His response to them is a huge key for us today! “Do you not understand this parable? How then will you understand all the parables?” This is Jesus telling them that this particular parable is particularly important in translating many other parables, symbols and messages within the entire Bible.

– “The sower sows the word.” This tells us that anywhere in the Bible where the word “seed” is mentioned, it can also be assumed that it is a parable and the seed is referring to the Word or messages from God, spoken or written.

– “And these are the ones along the path, where the word is sown: when they hear, Satan immediately comes and takes away the word that is sown in them.” I personally had this happen to me when God spoke His first words of His radical Grace into my life, and I can vouch for the ferocity in which those words are snatched away from you, with talons that tear the flesh! There are times in life when our heavenly sower is sowing His word into our life and we can feel it hit the flesh of our hearts. As we are just barely beginning to wrap our brains around the concept, or hoping that maybe God really is that kind of good, when the Enemy comes along and snatches that hope right back replacing it with his Doubt, Fear and Ignorance. He snatches Words of Hope with his biting words of Hate and Greed before we ever really even know fully what we had in our hands to begin with. There’s a commercial out right now, I think it’s for satellite TV, where a woman is just stepping off her porch with her little dog to go for a walk on this nice bright sunny day when a huge bird of prey swoops down out of nowhere, snatches the dog away from her and flies away with it in its talons. That is precisely what the Enemy does. God’s word is a great gift of Light, and Love and Hope for His people. It is food for our souls, but the Enemy doesn’t want us to actually eat it because if we do, we will grow and bear fruit making it harder for him to stop us. So he snatches it away before it can ever take root in our hearts and become imbedded into our souls.

– “And these are the ones sown on rocky ground: the ones who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy. And they have no root in themselves, but endure for a while; then, when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately they fall away.” In this instance the seed, or personal message from God, is not immediately snatched away, but rather is allowed to grow briefly. I experienced this with the second instance that God sowed His words of radical Grace into my heart. This time, it sank in deeper than the first, and I entertained it briefly. I wondered if God could really love me that much, if He could forgive me that completely, I hoped that He could. And yet life would creep in and bring me into hot situations where Doubt would convince me that His goodness wasn’t really “that good”. And I would wither away again.

-“And the others are the ones sown among thorns. They are those who hear the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful.” Ahhhh… here we are, back to the thorns and on to the third time that God sowed His word of Radical Grace into my life. I’ll never forget the day; at least I pray that I don’t! It was my 32nd birthday. I was sitting in my red recliner in front of the TV watching a sermon on grace. The pastor shared his own personal testimony of how God’s radical Grace finally caught up with him. He was young and passionate about the Lord, desperate to please Him in any way that he could. I could TOTALLY relate to this! I was so on fire for God and yet having been steeped in legalism my entire life I was desperate to be perfect in order to please God. Little did I know, that’s not what pleases Him. In fact, my perfection is what kills Him. That day I sat and listened to the pastor’s story through tears, his story was my story. I was so desperate to please God and adamant about never sinning that I was constantly sinning. I was so focused on being good for Jesus that I had completely stopped looking at Jesus and was completely focused on myself and my sin. In trying to please Him, I left Him. I became so focused on what I was doing that I was totally missing what He was doing…and more importantly I had completely missed what He has done.

Some sects of Christianity are so focused on the Law, the Ten Commandments, and following them to the letter, that we have lost the whole point of the Gospel message, GRACE! Jesus didn’t come to abolish the Law, He came to fulfill it! Do you know what that means? It means that the Law was a prophecy of the perfection of God that would literally put on flesh and walk among us. It means that Jesus was the fulfillment of the Law in the most perfect way! Just like when a prophecy is fulfilled it is finished, so too is the Law finished in Christ! When the Law was given on Mount Sinai, it was given as a picture of what was to come and God told the Israelites to follow these commands. But then when Jesus came what was it that He told His chosen Disciples? “Follow Me”. Jesus is the total embodiment of the Law, only MORE perfect. If the Old Covenant had been completely perfect then there would have been no need to create a New Covenant now would there? But that is precisely what Jesus came to do! He came to give us a New Covenant with a New Command. “Love one another as I have loved You.” “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and all your soul and all your mind. Likewise, Love your neighbor as yourself. In these two all the Law is summed up.” While the original Law consisted of thou shalt not’s, the new command is not a don’t, but a DO. Why? Because God knows how He created us! He knows how Satan works! If God tells us don’t eat from this tree, then the first thing Satan is going to do is tempt us with all his seductive ways to get us to eat from that tree. The Law alerts us to sin. If there is no command that tells us not to covet, then we are so much less likely to covet. Those without the law are a law unto themselves.

On the day that Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tablets of stone 3,000 people died because of their sins. On the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit of Jesus came down and filled His people, enabling them to do what He had called them to do, 3,000 people were saved and brought into eternal Life. There is a reason they call those Ten Commandments the Law of death, it’s because it kills. But the Spirit of God brings Life! And with that Spirit, and focusing on the death of Jesus instead of ourselves and our own sinfulness, we are brought out of darkness into His marvelous Light!

Does that mean that we should go out and murder because we no longer follow the Law? NO!!! It means that we follow the Spirit of the Living God because we have been forgiven so completely that the slate that held our sins was wiped clean by the blood of Jesus before we were even born!

God showed me a picture once, He talks to me a lot in pictures, where there was a teen praying in his bedroom asking God to come into his heart and be his Lord and Savior. This teen was COVERED in little round stickers that had “SIN” written on them. Every sin that he had or ever would commit was literally covering him. And at the moment he opened his heart and began praying Jesus appeared behind him and silently started picking stickers off the youth. And one by one as He plucked them from his shirt Jesus said, “this is Mine…. this is Mine… this is Mine… this is Mine…”

Our sins are no longer ours when we give ourselves over to Christ. In that very moment they belong to Him. Our sins are part of who we are, and when we surrender our lives to Him, they belong to Him too; every single one of them, past, present and future. And in that moment we become like Him, sinless and pure in the eyes of God. We are forgiven COMPLETELY without spot or blemish. Now do we look like that to the world, no way! Do we see ourselves like that? Not usually. But should we?

This reading has been an excerpt from Tamar’s book Waiting…, if you would like to read more it is available HERE in multiple formats.

Categories: 365 Life, Jesus Loves YOU, Judges, Waiting, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Leave a comment

Not One

Joshua 22:30-24:33 & Jude

“Thus the LORD gave to Israel all the land that he swore to give to their fathers. And they took possession of it, and they settled there. And the LORD gave them rest on every side just as he had sworn to their fathers. Not one of all their enemies had withstood them, for the LORD had given all their enemies into their hands. Not one word of all the good promises that the LORD had made to the house of Israel had failed; all came to pass.” Joshua 21:43-45

I don’t know if you’ve ever received a promise from the LORD, but I have and I can tell you that God’s promises aren’t small. He’s not a small God with small dreams for us. He’s not a God that thinks small things towards us, He has BIG dreams, BIG thoughts and BIG hopes for us… which makes them all the harder for us to believe Him for them because to us they’re impossible. They are totally and completely unattainable on our own, which is exactly why God dreams them for us, because He wants us to accomplish them WITH Him.

I have always loved dogs. When I was in elementary school my best friend had a little chestnut Dachshund. She was the spunkiest, cutest little thing I had ever seen and I wanted one desperately. I grew up, got married and immediately started hounding my husband to get a dog… we got a cat. Fast forward another 11 years and two cats later (the first one died) and I was still begging my husband for a dog. One day we were in Tractor Supply Company looking for something for my dear hubby and it just happened to be one of their pet days, where they host animals from a local shelter and you can adopt them. There was this beautiful pit bull named Rumpke. They named him that because he was found next to a Rumpke dumpster. He and his foster person were just walking through the store and he walked right up to us. The look in his eyes absolutely broke my heart, he wanted a home, and I wanted to give it to him. As Rumpke and his person left, the kids and I immediately turned on my husband with our own puppy dog eyes and pleaded to take Rumpke home with us. He was a rock, “No”. I gotta give him credit, he never budged and that had to be really really hard for him because he’s a great dad and husband and loves to spoil us. I will be completely honest and tell you that I went home and prayed and sobbed over that dog for weeks. Literally, for weeks! I prayed and prayed and prayed for Rumpke. I even went so far as to pray that he would run away from the foster home and come find us… if it be God’s will for us to have him of course. But day after day, there was no Rumpke on my front porch. The other thing I prayed during that time was for my Isaac dog. Sarah’s son Isaac was the child of promise, I wanted my dog of promise; the PERFECT dog for our family. And I thought I knew what that was, except I’m not God. So as I prayed and prayed for Rumpke, each time I would end with, “but LORD, if he’s not my Isaac dog, then I don’t want him.” And I really did mean it.

About a year later I caught the dog fever again, but it was different this time. I can’t explain how it was different; all I can say is that it was just different. I started surfing PetFinder.com, but not for just any dog I was looking for my Dachshund. I spent hours over months looking for just the right dog, at just the right price from just the right place. Maybe that’s how it was different this time, I could just feel God’s Spirit leading me. If you’re not used to that feeling, then there’s no way that you can understand what I mean when I say that, but there’s just this feeling in your gut when you just know something is right. Some say it is women’s intuition, but I’ve learned it’s the Holy Spirit moving within me, leading me in the way that I should go. Anyway, the day came when I searched PetFinder and saw this precious miniature Dachshund named Luigi. It was his name that caught my attention first because at the time my son was playing Mario Kart ALL the time! The second thing that caught my attention with Luigi was his picture, he was licking his nose! It was such a silly pose that it made me laugh out loud the first time I saw it and I loved him instantly. Although he was a little farther away than I wanted to drive, it was only an hour. I made some phone calls and a LOT of prayer and we ended up bringing him home. He was so malnourished that all the fur had fallen off his ears and he was beginning to even lose the fur on his tail! L He needed love and food, fast! I’ll never forget the day I brought him home. He had just had his surgery when I picked him up from the vet, he was still shaky and sleepy so I had to hold him in my lap all the way home (oh darn). I brought him into our house and he tried to stand up and walk, but still couldn’t. His legs were so wobbly he almost fell down several times! The kids were due to get off the bus in about thirty minutes, the dog and I had both had a huge day, so I scooped him up, lay down on the couch and he curled up on my chest. His poor little skinny naked body shivered from cold and probably a little anxiety from all the drastic changes he had just undergone, but I think part of him knew that I loved him because he snuggled his little black and brown head up under mine. For half an hour I just lay there petting him trying to get him to stop shivering.

Before we brought him home we discussed his name. We all liked Luigi, quite a bit in fact, except we were giving him a new home and a new life so didn’t that warrant a new name as well? We thought so. Oh the names that we came up with, but the one we liked the best, the one that fit the best, was the name that my husband chose; Skippy. You see we have a story in our family that my great grandma Tyra had a dog named Skippy… a very spoiled dog. We’ll just say he was quite “plump”. And one day my great grandpa came into the kitchen and started giving grandma a hard time about always spoiling the dog and giving him food he shouldn’t have. The next thing you know grandpa turns around and says “Here Skippy, have some bacon”. Yeah, GRANDMA is the one spoiling the dog… sure grandpa! To this day whenever someone in our family is making bacon the Skippy story usually gets told.

So here we are adopting this dog that is literally skin and bones and barely anything else and what he needs more than anything is love and some bacon. What better name than Skippy? A name that means “spoiled”. He came from a home where they couldn’t feed and provide for him the way that he needed, he was so socially inept that it has taken many hours of training to get him able to function in a town full of other dogs. And yet I doubt that he remembers much of those five years in his life because all day every day he is reminded, by his name and full food bowl, that he is no longer in that place anymore.

In our reading today I was overwhelmed by how many times the word pastureland was used. I couldn’t help but think of the twenty-third Psalm while I was reading it.

“The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever.”

This week’s reading has been so wonderful in that it is all about entering into a new place. Entering into a new land, the land that God had promised them generations earlier. The reading this week has been about promises being fulfilled and God showing His people, not just His provision and protection but also His amazing grace and faithfulness. These Israelites that were fighting these battles throughout the promised land had never tasted the food of Egypt, they had never felt the taskmaster’s whip flicking their skin and tearing through it, they had only ever known the provision of God in the wilderness. They had only ever heard of what a life of slavery was like, never having experienced it themselves. Neither had they experienced the amazing abundance and goodness of the Promised Land and everything that it held within its bosom. Then one fateful day, they up and move out of the wilderness and across the Jordan. When they get to the other side, like Skippy, they undergo a bit of surgery; they shed some blood in preparation of entering their new forever home. And then the battles start, and one by one by one each and EVERY enemy is defeated; they all go home and REST from the war. It has been won. And as they each settle into their lounge chairs at the end of the day they sigh at the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living because not ONE word of all the good promises that the LORD had made to the house of Israel failed. Not… one.

This reading has been an excerpt from Tamar’s book Waiting…, if you would like to read more it is available HERE in multiple formats.

Categories: 365 Life, Jesus Loves YOU, Joshua, Jude, Waiting, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Leave a comment

Land of Promise

Joshua 19:17-22:29

“How long will you put off going in to take possession of the land, which the LORD, the God of your fathers, has given you?” Joshua 18:3

So much of the reading for this week has been the defining of the boundaries for the people of Israel and the battles they had to fight in order to gain that territory given to them by the LORD. This message resonates with me so fiercely right now as I feel like I have been fighting for my territory for ages now… and yet what is my word for the week? “How long will you put off going in to take possession of the land, which the LORD, the God of your fathers, has given you?” You see the LORD has given us each a territory, a land of promise that is ours for the taking… but we have to stand up and fight for it. Just like the daughters of Manasseh had to stand up and voice their desire for what had been promised to them. And while it may not be easy, God has promised that land to us. He has promised that He will fight with us for that property and we know that if God is with us then WHO can be against us?

For months now I have been faking it. I’ve been saying that I am believing God for the things that He has promised me for my life and yet I haven’t been acting in faith on those promises. There are areas of victory in my life that I have yet to achieve a full victory in them simply because I have allowed the fear of failure to hinder me from even trying to stand up and take action in that area. For months now God has been nudging me to act like the teacher I know that I am, yet have I even once stood up before a group and taught? Well, yes… once. But only once. God has blessed me with a land, a stage, have a taken it? Barely. I’ve dipped my toes into the edges of the water, but I’m not even knee-deep in it yet. And if the purpose is to part the waters, well I have yet to get that far. But I will! Because I know that God is with me, and I know that He will fight for me I need only to be still and know that HE is God. I need only to move in the direction He tells me to move and the waters will part before me and I will walk across on dry ground! I will stand on the stone in the center of the Jordan and I will remember this day.

Last week I had a “come to Jesus” meeting with a dear friend of mine where she sat across from me and sternly reprimanded me for failing to stand up for my “flock”. While I had always thought of my little women’s group as my flock, I had never referred to it that way and I had certainly never accepted the true responsibility that came with that position of shepherd and teacher. I failed them. I failed me. I failed God.

But just because I fell, doesn’t mean I have to stay there!!!

In Joshua 19:47 we read, “When the territory of the people of Dan was lost to them, the people of Dan went up and fought against Leshem, and after capturing it and striking it with the sword they took possession of it and settled in it, calling Leshem, Dan, after the name of their ancestor.” Sure they had lost the territory that God had given them, but did they let that stop them from taking it back? Did they just run away and say, “Well, apparently God didn’t really want us to live in this land after all….” NO! They stood up, grabbed their swords and their shields and they went after that ground that the enemy had stolen from them!

We can’t just sit around on our thumbs and sigh, “Oh well, maybe it just wasn’t meant to be…”, “I guess I wasn’t supposed to get a job that nice” or “I must not be worth God’s time to listen to my cries for help and deliverance from this pit I’m in…” Nope, God has excellence planned for us! “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the Lord, and I will restore your fortunes and gather you from all the nations and all the places where I have driven you, declares the Lord, and I will bring you back to the place from which I sent you into exile.” Jeremiah 29:11-14

This reading has been an excerpt from Tamar’s book Waiting…, if you would like to read more it is available HERE in multiple formats.

Categories: 365 Life, Jesus Loves YOU, Joshua, Waiting, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Leave a comment


Joshua 15:9-19:16

OK. So here’s the deal. I’ve been going round and round in my head for the last week or so trying to figure out how I was going to manage the kids being home over Thanksgiving AND making sure to write and send out the blog every day. I’ve also been battling with how to find time to work on the new book that God commissioned me with at the convention. So, here’s what God has finally convinced me to do.


Well, they’ll be re-runs for some of you long time viewers, but they’ll be new for all you newcomers! 😀 You see, we have just now reached the point in the 365 Life Season 1 plan where I was beginning to lose my steam. I had been trying to write through the Bible in a Year and had managed to get about half-way through it in about a year and a half. Not so great. It was at this point that I was re-gaining my passion and purpose for the program and the blog, and I had picked back up, not where I had left off writing, but where I was in the reading. So. Anyway, long story short, I have this Bible study I wrote during that time, “Waiting”. And it covers the readings that we’re covering right now. So. In order to give me family time AND time to prepare for our next segment of readings so that we can get further this time than I did last time, I will be sharing the writings from “Waiting” with you. They even include videos AND video outlines. Ooooooo! J

And to whet your appetites a bit for what’s coming next, the “new book” is on identity in Christ and being the YOU God created you to be.

So, without any further ado, today I give you: The Introduction Video for the week,

The Video Guide PDF,

And the reading that goes with today’s Word of the Day:

“the daughters of Manasseh received an inheritance along with his sons.” Joshua 17:6

The daughters of Manasseh were bold, bold enough to go up and request ownership of what had been promised to them; land. Every Hebrew name in the Bible has tremendous meaning behind it, so when we find them we can dig deeper and find a hidden second meaning in a story or verse if we look up the meanings of the names. In this particular verse the Holy Spirit tugged at my heart strings for the name Manasseh. In this verse the daughters could have been referred to as the daughters of Zelophehad, because that is whose daughters they were. Instead, they were referred to as the daughters of Manasseh. So I flipped back to Genesis 41 to the story of Joseph and then skimmed until I found the names of his two sons in verse 51. “Joseph called the name of the firstborn Manasseh. ‘For,’ he said, ‘God has made me forget all my hardship and all my father’s house.'”

For thirteen years Joseph went through some really low spots in life, his brothers threw him in a pit and planned on killing him. Only to then decided to profit from him instead and sell him into slavery. Then he served in Potiphar’s house as his faithful slave for many years until Potiphar’s wife wrongfully accused him of molesting her and he was thrown into prison for doing the right thing and running away from her! He was in prison several years, met some gentlemen, interpreted their dreams for them and asked them to remember him when they got out… well the one that lived anyway. But the cupbearer forgot about Joseph when he got out of prison and Joseph sat there for a few more years, just waiting for his chance. Waiting for God to set him free; free to fulfill the purpose he had been created for. And then that day came. And Pharaoh called for Joseph, bringing him out of jail and into the second highest position in the entire kingdom. Joseph was given a wife, who bore him children, the first of which Joseph named Manasseh. Why? Because his life had turned around so completely that he had to commemorate it with his son’s name. He didn’t ever want to forget this moment where God had come through is such a brilliant way that it made all the years of suffering and hardship make perfect sense. Suddenly Joseph could see clearly the fruit of all those years of waiting. They had made him strong and prepared him for what he was made to do; the saving of many lives.

These daughter’s of Manasseh, they are the daughters of that moment, the children of that time in Joseph’s life where everything was so good that he couldn’t remember the hard stuff that lead up to it. These daughters received the inheritance that was promised to them along with all the other sons of Manasseh because those daughters were just as important in the eyes of God as the sons were.

Times may be tough right now, but they won’t always be. Times of refreshing will come, not may come, they WILL come. But don’t live in those moments if they’re not here yet. Live in the moment you are currently standing in. It’s the only one you’ve been given and it’s a gift, that’s why they call it the present. Is this moment painful? Live in it. Live in this pain, KNOWING with certainty that it will not last forever. Live in this moment right now knowing that this pain has purpose and meaning. And while you may not know what that purpose or meaning is right now, know that there will come a time when you will have a moment named Manasseh where everything from the past will come into focus and it will all make sense and it will all be so good that you will be able to thank God for those hurts of the past. Because you will be able to see how those hurts caused you to grow in the direction He was pointing you.

Think about the cross. That moment was the absolute lowest point of many of those Disciples lives, and it was certainly the lowest point of Mary’s life. Her completely innocent baby boy was hanging on a cross! But now we, and Mary, can look back at that moment as the BEST, most high moment in all of history! On that day, in that moment, none of those people knew what was really happening. But today, in this moment, we do. While there is no way for us to fully understand what all happened in that moment of the cross, we certainly understand so much more than they did.

We each have a cross to bear; but we don’t carry it alone. Jesus carries it with us, because He is always with us and will never forsake us.

He loves you.

Categories: 365 Life, Jesus Loves YOU, Joshua, Waiting, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Leave a comment

I Will

Jeremiah 23:1-25:38

“I will set My eyes on them for good, and I will bring them back to this land, I will build them up, and not tear them down.: I will plant them, and not pluck them up. I will give them a heart to know that I am the LORD, and they shall be My people and I will be their God, for they shall return to Me with their whole heart.” Jeremiah 24:6-7

As many of you know, I am a mom first and a writer second, Right now my children are on Fall Break and my husband has the next two days off work, so I’ve decided it best to spent more time with them than with you. I hope you will understand. So for the next few days I will be sharing with you some of my favorite moments from the past few years of blogging and teaching. The first one fits so perfectly with today’s Word of the Day I could barely stand it!

If you re-read today’s scripture you may notice a particular phrase repeated over and over again, “I will”. As God is saying this through His prophet Jeremiah, He is making sure that we understand who it is that will be doing all the work. And that, my friends, is the message I wanted to revisit today!

This is the final video lesson in the “Waiting” Bible Study we did together a few months ago. Enjoy! J

“Waiting for the I Wills”-(Video Link)

Video Guide

“for they shall hear of Your great name and Your mighty hand, and of Your outstretched arm,” 1 Kings 8:42

The 7 I Wills in Exodus 6:1-9

I will ______ you out from ______ the _________ of the _________.

I will ______ you from ______to them.

I will ______ you with an ______ arm & with great acts of _______.

I will ______ you to be My _________.

I will be your _____,

I will ______ you into the ______ that I______ to give to Abraham, to
Isaac, and to Jacob.

I will ______ it to you for a ______, I am the LORD.

The 9 I Wills in Ezekiel 20:33-38

I will be ______ over you.

I will ______ you out from the peoples & ______ you out of the countries where you are scattered, with a ______ hand & an ______ arm, & with ______ poured out.

I will ______ you into the wilderness of the peoples, & there

I will ______ into ______ with you ______ to ______.

I will ______ into ______ with you, declares the Lord GOD.

I will ______ you pass under the ______ and

I will ______ you into the ______ of the ______.

I will ______ out the rebels [sin] from among you, and those who transgress against me.

I will ______ them out of the land where they sojourn, but they shall not enter the land of Israel. Then you will know that I am the LORD.

Romans 7:1-4

Or do you not know, brothers – for I am speaking to those who know the law – that the law is binding on a person only as long as he lives? For a ______ ______ is bound
by ______ to her ______ while he lives, but if her husband ______ she is ______ from the ______ of ______. Accordingly, she will be called an ______ if she ______ with another ______ while her husband is ______. But if her husband ______, she is ______ from that ______, and if she ______ another ______ she is ______ and adulteress. Likewise my brothers, you also have ______ to the ______ through the ______ of ______, so
that you may ______ to another, to ______ who has been raised from the ______, in order that ______ may bear fruit for God.

Galatians 3:10-12

For all who rely on ______ of the ______ are under a ______; for it is
written, “Cursed be everyone who does not abide by ______ things written in the Book of the Law, and ______ them.” Now it is evident that ______ ______ is ______ before God by the ______, for “The righteous shall live by ______,” But the ______ is not of ______, rather “The one who does them shall live by them.”

Galatians 4:1-7

I mean that the heir, as long as he is a ______, is no different from a ______, though he is the owner of everything, but he is under ______ and managers until the date set by his ______. In the ______ ______we also, when we were children, were ______ to the elementary ______ of the world. But when the ______ of ______ had come, God sent forth His ______, born of ______, born under the ______, to ______ those who were under the ______, so that we might receive ______ as ______. And because ______ ______ sons, God has sent the ______ of His Son into our ______, crying, “______,______!” So you are ______ ______ a ______, but a ______, and if a son, then an ______ through God.

Luke 15:11-24 the story of the Prodigal son

“While the son is a long way off” just tells us that the entire time the Father was there w______ for the son to c______ b______.

God was w______ for us to figure out “I need a S______, I need someone to h______ m__, to pull me out of this place where I’ve put myself.

As soon as He s______ us, He comes r______ with o______ a______ ready to e______ us.

Matthew 27:35, Mark 15:24, Luke 23:33, John 19:18

With His arms outstretched, they C______ H______.

Galatians 3:13-14

Christ r______ us from the c______ of the l___ by b______ a curse for ___ – for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree” – so that ____ C______ J______
the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that ___ might receive the promised Spirit through ______.

Hebrews 9:11-28

11 But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation) 12 He entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of His own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption. 13 For if the blood of g______ and b______ and the sprinkling of defiled persons with the ashes of a heifer, sanctify for the purification of the flesh, 14 how much more will the blood of C______, who through the eternal Spirit offered H______ without blemish to God purify our c______ from dead works to serve the l______ God. 15 Therefore He is the mediator of a n___ covenant, so that those who are called may r______ the promised eternal inheritance, since a d______ has occurred that r______ them from the t______ committed under the f______ covenant.

I will deliver you from slavery to the l____,

I will bring you out from under the burdens of the L___.

I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great acts of judgment on J______.

I will take you to be my people, and

I will be your God, and you shall know that I am the LORD your God, who has brought you out from under the burdens of the L___.

I will bring you into the land of rest that I swore to give to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob,

I will give it to you for a possession. I am the LORD.

Hebrews 9:16 For where a w______ is involved, the d______ of the one who m______ it must be established. 17 For a will takes effect o______ at d______, since it is not in force as long as the one who made it is alive.

22 Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with b______, and without the shedding of b______ there is no f______ of sins.

26 … But as it is, He has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to p____ a______ s___ by the sacrifice of H______. 27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, 28 so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to s______ those who are eagerly w______ for Him.

Psalm 136

H___ s______ l____ e______ f______! Praise be to God alone!

Categories: 365 Life, Jeremiah, Jesus Loves YOU, Waiting, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Leave a comment

Chariots of Fire

2 Kings 4:1 – 6:23

Word of the Day:

“Do not be afraid for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” 2 Kings 6:16

Oh this story has got to be one of my all time favorites! The Prophet Elisha’s servant goes out early in the morning to do his daily chores where his eyes are met with a terrifying sight, the entire town surrounded by an enemy army… there for them! I can just see his eyes widening in surprised fear, jaw dropped down to his chest, his breath quickening as he turns on his heels and scrambles back into the house breathless and afraid. He looks up at the prophet of God and asks trembling, “What shall we do?”

And then there’s Elisha, calm as a cucumber, “Do not be afraid, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” The servant had to think he was crazy, completely out of his mind. Couldn’t he count, one, two, there were two of them, not an army, just two; a servant and the man of God. But God’s math is a little, no a lot, different than the math of men. We can only count what we can see, and this man wasn’t seeing the whole picture. He was only looking at the natural side of things and had completely missed the supernatural side of the battle. In that moment he had forgotten who he was with. So Elisha prayed, “‘O LORD, please open his eyes that he may see.’ And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw, and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.” (2 Kings 17)

They had no need to fear because God was with them. And here we are today, Jesus, Emmanuel, God with us has come and is with us every step of every day in every way and we have no need to fear. Yet we do, I do, all the time, more often than I can count. So often I find myself, eyes wide in fear, crying out to God “What shall I do?” and He opens my eyes (sometimes) to the angel armies surrounding me and my situation prepared to fight the Enemy to the death just for me. Then other times He doesn’t open my eyes, but rather my heart, to see the Truth that even if I can’t feel them or see them doesn’t mean they’re not there. Just because it doesn’t feel like God is with me, doesn’t mean He isn’t there holding my hand and squeezing my heart. Just because I can’t see the chariots of fire, doesn’t mean that my deliverance hasn’t come. Just because I can’t feel Him, see Him or touch Him doesn’t mean He’s not real and that He’s not there.

Just like I can look out my window and see the leaves blowing around in my yard and know that the wind is blowing without feeling it on my skin. I can look into the Word of God and see how God loves me and know that His Spirit is working on my behalf for my good; even if it doesn’t feel good to me at the time. I can know with confidence that He is good and true and faithful and just and He is acting on my behalf, no matter what my eyes are seeing. So I will choose not to be afraid. I will choose to believe in faith that there really are more with me than those who are against me. And I will believe those things sight unseen because God’s word tells me they are Truth and I want to stand in agreement with Him all the days of my life.


Give a book bible button

I wanted to make you aware of some ministry updates. I am very excited to announce that I have a Mother’s Day speaking engagement scheduled for May 11th. I would LOVE to have books on hand for the women to buy, and even some to give away as gifts. However, the current funds in the ministry account are running drastically low. If you are able, I would love for you to prayerfully consider giving a book or Bible to someone who can’t afford one. If you are able, please click here!

Categories: 2 Kings, 365 Life, Waiting, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


2 Kings 1:1 – 3:27

Word of the Day:

“from now on neither death nor miscarriage shall come from it.” So the water has been healed to this day, according to the word Elisha spoke. 2 Kings 2:21-22

I have to tell you no sweeter words could I have read today. The leap of my spirit when my eyes fell on the word “miscarriage” was physically noticeable. In the last few weeks I have felt surrounded by infant death! Two miscarriages (one at only five weeks and the other at 7 months), a cousin’s daughter born with intestine problems fighting for her life, another relative through marriage trying to adopt and hitting dead ends… it’s just been too much. I mean, it’s one thing to be surrounded by death, but the deaths of infants, well it just seems so wrong.

Yet God is Sovereign and just and wise and I know that He knows best, even when it doesn’t feel good.

So today as I was just getting started in my reading I got a text that the relative through marriage was on a plane home with her “officially theirs” baby! We were so excited to hear that her waiting and dead ends were over! Hooray! But then a column of reading later there it is! The Word of the Lord that Elisha spoke, “from now on neither death nor miscarriage”! I believe that not only was that a word for them then, but that it’s a word for me and my friends and family now! Why else would God have paired it with a PERFECTLY timed text like that? That news of great joy could have come at any time but God wanted me to receive it WHILE I was reading; which (I might add) was at a much later time of day than normal… coincidence I think not!

Yes. While there may be naysayers out there who would chalk it all up to coincidence, I refuse to do so. My God has perfect timing and He knows how to use it. He really is an awesome God!


Give a book bible button

I wanted to make you aware of some ministry updates. I am very excited to announce that I have a Mother’s Day speaking engagement scheduled for May 11th. I would LOVE to have books on hand for the women to buy, and even some to give away as gifts. However, the current funds in the ministry account are running drastically low. If you are able, I would love for you to prayerfully consider giving a book or Bible to someone who can’t afford one. If you are able, please click here!

Categories: 1 Kings, 365 Life, Waiting, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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