Ezekiel

Don’t Give Up!


Ezekiel 12:17-16:34

“The time has come for every prophecy to be fulfilled! … For I am the LORD! If I say it, it will happen. There will be no more delays… I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken! Then the message came to me from the LORD: ‘Son of man, the people of Israel are saying, ‘He’s talking about the distant future. His visions won’t come true for a long, long time.’ Therefore, tell them, ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: No more delay! I will now do everything I have threatened. I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken!” Ezekiel 13:23-28

God is AWESOME, that’s all I can say really. He is awesome. His love for us is awesome. His devotion to us is amazing. His dedication to us is unfailing. God is AWESOME, that’s just all there is to it.

This morning as I was reading today’s Word of the Day I could just feel the presence of the Lord joining me in the room. I could feel Him nudging me as I read and letting me know that although these words were written thousands of years ago, they’re just as appropriate today as they were then, with a little twist of course. These words on that day spelled absolute destruction for the people of God. Today they mean absolute blessing! He is desperate for us, for our attention and devotion. He is a jealous God that desires a steady relationship with us where we give Him more than an hour of our time every week or even every day, but that we would give him every hour of every day. He desires that we would but acknowledge His presence with us throughout the day, in the good times and the bad.

There’s another section in today’s Word of the Day that was particularly exciting. I don’t know about you all, but for years now it has felt as though there was an invisible wall between me and the plans that God has for me (that He’s shown me). And no matter how hard I tried I just couldn’t get through the wall. Perhaps like me, you’re a little tired of hitting your head against the wall.

Well, today’s reading was encouraging on that front:

“The wall will soon fall down. A heavy rainstorm will undermine it; great hailstones and mighty winds will knock it down.” Ezekiel 13:11

He showed me a vision of a large fish tank with a glass divider in the center of the tank like a wall. When the divider is first put into the tank the fish that have been used to being able to swim the entire length of the tank would swim directly into the wall over and over expecting to be able to get through to the other side. Only they couldn’t. They did this time and time again until they finally gave up and simply stayed on their side of the tank. At this point the divider was removed, but it made no difference because the fish had given up attempting to reach the other side of the tank.

Then He showed me a vision of a baby elephant at the circus with a metal clamp on its ankle connected to a chain that was staked into the ground. Since the elephant was a baby it was physically unable to pull the stake up out of the ground and escape its bonds. No matter how hard the baby elephant tried to walk away from the stake, no matter how hard it pulled and strained against its bonds, it could not free itself from them. As the elephant grew its metal clamp grew with it, but it continued to be held to the ground with that simple wooden stake in the ground. No longer a baby, the elephant now possessed the strength to simply walk away from the stake and pulling it clean out of the ground with hardly any effort at all. However while it now possessed the strength it no longer possessed the will to try any longer, it had long since given up in that fight deeming it hopeless.

He said to me, “these are two examples of My people today, yourself included. You’ve been fighting a battle against the enemy. It’s been long, it’s been HARD and I know you’re tired. There have been walls that you’ve been hitting your head against, glass ceilings perhaps. There have been bonds that you have struggled against long and hard. Some of you have even given up the fight. You’ve decided that the wall is never going to move and there’s no way to get through. You’ve decided that the bonds will never shake loose and there’s no point in trying any more. I’m here to tell you today that that is NOT the case!

DO NOT GIVE UP!

The walls are crumbling from your previous attempts and are now to the point that one strong storm will simply blow them away to powder. The bonds that held you fast when you were younger are no match for you now! You have grown, strong and tall and wise. You are fully capable of simply walking away from those stakes if you but choose to.

DO NOT GIVE UP!

You are SO CLOSE, do not stop trying now! The walls are crumbling, can you hear them? The chains are breaking free, can you feel them dropping off? DO NOT GIVE UP! You have done everything you could to stand thus far and I’m proud of you. KEEP STANDING AGAINST THE ENEMY, HE WILL FALL.

DO NOT GIVE UP!

You can do all things through Jesus who gives you strength. All things are possible for him who believes. For nothing is impossible with God!!! I am here. I am with you, every single step of the way My Beloved. You need only to believe and don’t doubt. I am here. I am with you. I am for you and not against you. You can do this. I promise, we’ll get through this TOGETHER.”

 

*My friends, I can’t thank you enough for your prayers! I can hardly explain the difference in the way I feel today verses the way that I felt a week ago. It’s like night and day! I would not have been able to receive a word like this a week ago, my heart was way too hard. Today however, I believe whole heartedly that it is 100% TRUTH! Whatever you’ve been fighting, whatever you’ve battle you’ve done everything you could to stand against, continue standing firm against them! They’re even more tired of the battle than you are! Keep fighting the good fight, you’re winning!!!!!

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Put the Bear Down!


Ezekiel 7:14-12:16

“And I will give them singleness of heart and put a new spirit within them. I will take away their stony stubborn heart and give them a tender responsive heart, so they will obey My decrees and regulations.” Ezekiel 11:19

This morning I woke up and for the first time all summer felt like I had actually rested while sleeping. It was WONDERFUL! I picked this for my verse today because it perfectly describes how I feel right now, like I’ve had a spirit/heart transplant! I’m at peace right now and it’s GLORIOUS! I have missed this place that I wandered so far away from where you know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you’re in God’s will for you AND you’re happy with it.

It’s been a very long summer for me. It’s been a summer of letting go and letting God take care of things I had been in control of and taking care of myself for a long time. Letting go can be SO HARD TO DO, but it’s also so good. You know how it feels to pick up a gallon of milk right? When you first pick it up it’s not so bad, but the longer you hold it the heavier it feels. You know that the weight isn’t changing, but yet it certainly feels like it is! Your fingers start to go numb, then your elbow starts to ache and then your shoulder starts to burn along with the frostbite in your fingers and all you want to do is to put it down but you can’t seem to find a place to put it! But then there’s the sweet relief of setting it down; your fingers warm back up, your elbow and shoulder cool back off and everything feels so much better than it did while you were holding that jug! THAT’S how I feel today. J

Friends, thank you so much for all your prayers, I KNOW that you have been praying for me and I KNOW that He has heard them. The night when I wrote about not being able to sleep I had been fighting with someone in my head all that afternoon and had decided that I just wasn’t going to go through that conversation any more, it wasn’t worth it. I no more than laid my head down on my pillow and BAM there I was fighting in my head all over again!!!! I caught myself and thought, “Gosh, it was almost as if the argument had been sitting there on my pillow waiting for my head to hit it just so it could get going again!” Then I started praying in tongues and almost immediately I heard the Holy Spirit say firmly, “PUT… THE BEAR… DOWN!”

Now I have to go into a bit of back story here. “The bear” He was referring to is the teddy bear that I have slept with since I was in elementary school.

Yes, I still sleep with stuffed animals. When I don’t my shoulders slouch into each other while I’m sleeping and my chest hurts so much when I wake up that it’s just not worth it. Plus, my husband buys them for me and who am I to not use them right? 😉 Which brings up my second back story point. The second stuffed animal that I have next to my bed is my “Sean the Sheep” stuffed sheep. Sean The Easter Bunny gave him to me a few years ago and I’ve always kind of thought of him as representative of two things, the sheep in my precious flock here on the blog; and that beautiful Sacrificial Lamb who gave His life for me all those years ago on a cross. So in the squishy sentimental part of my mind this stuffed sheep, given to me by my husband, reminds me of you all and my calling. The bear on the other hand, I never really thought of until I was told to “put the bear down”. And in that moment realized that it’s my past self and my family. I had been clinging to my family and not allowing God to take them and do with them what HE wanted to do for them and in them. Earlier that week, on Sunday, He had pointed out to me that I had turned my family into idols. That scared me, because I knew He was right. (Of COURSE He was right, He’s GOD!)

It was time to put the bear down. So I rolled over, put “the bear” down into the fully capable hands of my Father, picked up the sheep and wouldn’t you know it, I felt better immediately. The fight had stopped, the tight feeling in my chest had eased and I knew I was on the path to a better night. Hallelujah for a good night’s sleep!

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His Hold on Me


Ezekiel 2:1-7:13

“The Spirit lifted me up and took me away. I went in bitterness and turmoil, but the LORD’s hold on me was strong.” Ezekiel 3:14

Friends, there are times in our lives when bitterness and turmoil are our only friends. BUT, the LORD’s hold on us is so much stronger than our grasp on Him. While we may falter in our ability to retain our devotion to Him, His love for us endures forever. While we hold on to the ability to fail Him daily, His love for us never lets us go farther than His ability to redeem our failings.

For these last few months I have been filled with a bitterness and turmoil that I can hardly explain. My life as I’ve known it for the last seven years has been turned completely on its head; it feels like everything around me has changed… and I haven’t been happy about it. I LIKED the way things were, I liked being my own boss and taking care of my home and family. I LOVED spending my days researching the Bible and reading books and blogs about it. I don’t do those things like I used to and it’s completely ruffled my feathers. I’ve been bitter about all the change. I’ve been bitter about all the emotional pain I’ve endured over the last four years in doing what I’ve felt God was leading me to do only to feel like I failed miserably in the attempt of it. I’ve been in utter turmoil over working outside the home and leaving my (more grown up than I’d like them to be) children. I’ve been tormented about the state of our home and our finances and our food and our… you name it. I have felt like I’ve had split personalities arguing in my head CONSTANTLY since just before the summer began. Over the last month or so I’ve pretty much lost the ability to sleep soundly at night and instead spend the wee hours of the morning tossing and turning and, like I said, fighting. Then I get up and go to work and pretend that everything is hunky dory in my life as I smile and tell people to, “Have a good day”, as they walk out the door.

I don’t have a single doubt in my mind; it has been God’s will for me to leave my children and go to work at Dollar General. And yet that is precisely what I have been fighting – God’s will. For the last couple of weeks I have been BEGGING Him to take this bitterness and turmoil away from me. They’re not who I am and they’re not fun to live with – which probably hasn’t made ME very fun to live with either. But you’d have to ask my husband and children about that though. And as I read back through those sentences I’m realizing the problem, I’ve been asking Him to take them away rather than giving them to Him willingly. I’ve been clinging to them with all my might, although I can’t imagine why! Well, that ends now!

In Jesus’ name I don’t just release my hold on Bitterness and Turmoil, I cast them out with as much vim and vigor as I can muster! In Jesus name I reject their hold on my soul and my sleep and my sanity! HALLELUJAH!

The LORD’s hold on me is STRONG and I praise Him for that! I praise the LORD that His hold on me is stronger than any other force in this universe (or any other that may or may not exist). My God is THE God; He is the King of all kings and Lord of all lords. He is the Master and the Creator. He is the beginning and the end; the all powerful and the all knowing. He is the lover of my soul and the defender of my dreams. My God is an AWESOME God; He reigns from heaven above with wisdom, power and LOVE!

My God is an awesome God!

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Short, Sweet and Straight to the Point


Exodus 39:1-40:38 & Ezekiel 1:1-28

“Son of man, do not fear them or their words. Don’t be afraid even though their threats surround you like nettles and briers and stinging scorpions. Do not be dismayed by their dark scowls, even though they are rebels. You must give them My messages, whether they listen or not.” Ezekiel 2:6-7

Doing what God commands isn’t always the best way to earn popularity points with the people around you, but it IS always the best way to go. It isn’t always the easy choice, but it’s always the best choice.

LOL! And right now, God is commanding me to go to bed because I need the rest, so I guess this is all for today folks!

God bless you!!!!!!!

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Take a Day Off


Ezekiel 45:13-48:35

“It shall be the prince’s duty to furnish the burnt offerings, grain offerings, and drink offerings, at the feats, the new moons, and the Sabbaths, all the appointed feasts of the house of Israel: he shall provide the sin offerings, grain offerings, burnt offerings, and peace offerings, to make atonement on behalf of the house of Israel.” Ezekiel 45:17

God says we need to get outside and enjoy this beautiful day!

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Without Blemish


Ezekiel 42:1-45:12

After I finished my reading this morning, I whisked myself off to the kitchen to make myself a nice healthy breakfast next to cream-laden coffee. At the stroke of seven I flicked on the CD player and started up song eleven. Mandisa’s “Good Morning” blared through our house as I stood in waiting outside my children’s doors to pop my head in at them and sing at just the right line in the song.

I was not greeted with smiles.

I was greeted with groans of disapproval and dismay at the night being over and another day of school laying in wait for my children like a lion ready to pounce and devour. They may love school, but they do not love getting up for it.

As I bustled them along we magically managed to get both children bathed, dressed, fed, lunches packed and on the bus in THIRTY MINUTES! And I was practically strutting back into the house as they waved to me from the bus. Well, I pretend they wave back to me anyway, even if I can’t see them doing it. It’s too bad the “hate” school so much.

Yup. I was feeling like quite the awesome mom this morning. I was peppy and upbeat, kind and loving AND on time which is a hard one for me. I was walking tall and proud. (Can you hear the heavenly trumpets playing a victory song for me? Cause I’m pretty sure they did.)

I should have known.

I sat down at my desk full of vim and vigor from the successful send off this morning, ready to face another day of Preschool preparations and plans. As I started checking my calendar for the day and making some important phone calls, I found it. (bum bum BUM!)

Anna’s first homework assignment for first grade, and it WAS due Friday. It had gotten buried on my desk and I had completely forgotten about it.

POP! Mom confidence deflated in 0.2 seconds. Sigh… it was fun while it lasted…

You know, that feeling like you’re on top of the world and in charge and in control; and everything is handled. It feels great. But then something crosses your path that makes you feel about an inch tall, if you’re lucky. And you feel horrible for letting your family down.

Bad mom, bad!

You mentally strike yourself for not being perfect. Your record of mom success has been blemished and it will never be the same.

But what on earth makes us think that we should hold ourselves to that kind of standard anyway? I mean seriously, where do we get that drive to feel like we have to be perfect ALL the time otherwise we feel like a bad mom in need of punishment.

Who ever said that you were supposed to be perfect anyway?

And then I remembered it. The phrase I had underlined multiple times in my Bible this morning:

“without blemish” Ezekiel 43:23&25

Ezekiel was detailing the form of sacrifice that was acceptable to the LORD. Each time he said the phrase “without blemish” I underlined it, because it struck a chord in my heart. Jesus, so very unlike me, is the perfect sacrifice; He is without blemish or stain.

The Law requires perfection. Period. And while the Law is perfect in every possible way, WE AREN’T. We never have been and we never will be. We’re human, plain and simple and perfectly imperfect in every way. And that’s OK! You know why, because if we were perfect, then we wouldn’t need a perfect Savior.

If I were the perfect mom every second of every day then I would have no occasion to ask God to help me, to lead me, to say the things that my kids need to hear and do the things that my kids need for me to do.

My imperfections lead me to Jesus, the perfect sacrifice. In the Old Covenant when someone sinned and fell short of the glory of God they would choose the most perfect lamb from their flock and take it to the tabernacle to be sacrificed in order to justify them before our Perfect God.

Today when we sin and fall short of the glory of God, we need only to go to our Bible and hold out the perfect Lamb of God – Jesus.

He has justified us completely from all our sins for all time. He is the perfect sacrifice, offered up once and for all for the justification of one and all. Yes, even YOU.

No. ESPECIALLY YOU!

You have been justified by His Grace as a gift through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus! Don’t let your one failure ruin your otherwise perfect day! Pick yourself, dust yourself off, and keep moving forward.

I could let this one missed homework assignment haunt me for days with Mommy Guilt, but I’m not going to. While I may not be the Perfect Mom, I am the perfect mom for my kids. No amount of missed homework assignments can change that.

Thank God! Because I’m SURE there will be more!

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Derby Day!

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Ezekiel 39:1-41:26

Well my friends, today is another Derby Day! So I will not be writing in the reading, but instead I’d like for you to join in prayer with me for the derby.

Father God we come before You today and we thank You so much for the beautiful day that You’ve given us to spend outside with You and each other. Thank You Father God for the arena at the Indiana State Fair in which to perform and glorify You. We thank You for the ministry that You have given us to shine a light & we pray that we will do it to the best of our abilities. Lord I ask for special protective angels to come and stay at the State Fair today, especially over the drivers, over the audience, & over the officials. Lord I lift up the Bible table to you. I pray that you will have many many people walk past, see it, and stop to take Your word of life into their lives today. I pray that You touch their eyes to see You. That You would open their ears to hear You, that You would open their minds to understand Your Word and open their hearts to receive Your love for them today. I pray that You would show them Your love through us in wonderous ways today. And Lord, I pray selfishly that 7 x 70 will win the Derby.
In Jesus Name, Amen.

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He is for YOU


Ezekiel 35:1-38:23

“behold, I am for you,” Ezekiel 35:9

I don’t know if you have noticed in the last few weeks, but God seems to say, “You shall know that I am the LORD”, a lot. And it seems to always come after He has said that He would do something. Take 35:4 for example. God has just pronounced desolation and waste over Mount Seir and then finished the pronouncement with “and you shall know that I am the LORD.”

Then again in 35:15, “As you rejoiced over the inheritance of the house of Israel, because it was desolate, so I will deal with you; you shall be desolate, Mount Seir, and all Edom, all of it. Then they will know that I am the LORD.”

I find it interesting to look at the subjects of this verse. Look carefully and you find two. There are the people to whom He is speaking, Mount Seir and all Edom. But then there are also, “they that will know that He is the LORD.” And according to this verse, who do you suppose this “they” is referring to? Israel of course; they’re the ones that Mount Seir and all Edom mocked. In this passage of prophecy God is proclaiming over the enemies of Israel, certain destruction. And that destruction of the enemies of Israel will prove to Israel and their enemies that He is Yahweh.

Every time that this phrase has been spoken by our creator in the past few weeks I have marveled at it. I will sit there and just stare at it for a few moments. You see, there’s this thing we call faith. It’s defined in Hebrews 11:1 as “the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Faith is where we read a promise that God makes in His word, like, “I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5) and then choosing to believe that it is the truth because our God Yahweh said it.

But then there’s this time that we come upon, where the Truth feels like it’s not the truth. Where the promise feels like it’s been forgotten. And doubt begins to creep in. We think: “God’s Word says that He is always with me, but it certainly doesn’t feel like He is with me right now. In fact it certainly feels like I’ve been forsaken and forgotten.” You have to know that that is how the Israelites felt at this point. They’ve been scattered from their homeland, their Promised Land. They’ve become the neighborhood laughing stock and everyone is talking and evil gossiping about them. They certainly don’t feel like Yahweh is with them let alone for them.

But He is. They are His people; He adores them, no matter how many stupid things they do. But more importantly than that, He is Yahweh, a God of His Word. He is the one that says “I have spoken and I will do it”. (Ezekiel 37:14)

Do you feel like you’ve been abandoned by God? Have you stood up for Him and are now getting persecuted for it? Are people saying things about you or your ministry that just simply aren’t true, but they sound good to itchy ears? Guess what. He is Yahweh. He has PROMISED never to leave you or forsake you, no matter how many stupid things you do. He is Yahweh, God of His Word. He has spoken and will do what He speaks, because He is Yahweh. He IS with YOU, He has not forsaken you, so fear not. While things may feel “fallen apart” at the moment, they aren’t. He sees what they’ve done to you. He has heard what they are saying about you. And He WILL defend you. He is for you and not against you. Fear not dear one, Yahweh LOVES YOU. And the time WILL come when everyone will see the favor of God Almighty resting on your shoulders like a laurel wreath of victory. Until then, hang tight, stand tall and firm in your faith that His word is Truth.

“If you do not stand firm in your faith, you will not stand at all.” (Isaiah 7:9)

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He is the Good Shepherd


Ezekiel 32:9-34:31

“I will feed them in justice” Ezekiel 34:16

He is a just God. He requires full payment for sin. As humans, when someone commits murder we scream for justice, that the killer be tried for his crimes and punished appropriately. The Bible’s form of justice is an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a life for a life. According to the Bible, when someone commits murder, they too should pay the penalty and die for their crime.

Jesus paid it all. When a man walks out of a prison he has paid his sentence. Jesus walked back out of the prison of DEATH! The price has been paid in full to a just God.

He is just and justifier!

Jesus is the manna from heaven, food for the hungry and weak. He makes us lie down in green pastures, “good grazing land, and on rich pasture they shall feed on the mountains of Israel.” Ezekiel 34:14

Our just God is the eternal mountain. Jesus, our justifier, is the rich pasture land on which we feast daily.

WE ARE FORGIVEN. PERIOD.

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Word Search


Ezekiel 28:25-32:8

God and I thought it might be fun to send you on a little bit of a Word Search today. J I am praying that it speaks to you the way it spoke to me!

Enjoy!

1. Ezekiel 30:20

2. John 1:1-5

3. Proverbs 18:21

4. Genesis 1:1-5

5. 1 Thessalonians 5:5

6. John 14:30

7. John 16:33

8. Proverbs 18:4

9. Genesis 1:2

10. Ezekiel 31:4-9

11. Ephesians 5:26

12. Ezekiel 28:25

13. John 7:37-39

14. John 19:30

15. Acts 1:3-5

16. Acts 2:1-4

What did God speak to you through these verses? What Truth did you discover on our scavenger hunt through His Word? Write it down, treasure it in your heart, share it if He says it’s OK. I would LOVE to hear what mystery He revealed to you!

He also asked that I share this revelation with you:

Click on the image to be redirected to Water for LIFE to give a donation.

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