To Honor Jesus Christ,
Glorify God, Encourage Believers, & Warn All
information is offered with the hope that YOU can
come to KNOW the Lord personally.
It is recommended that you read " God is in Charge " before reading this; otherwise, you may not be able to understand this.
In order for us to have a REAL relationship with the LORD, we need a "basic bending." Our flesh, which includes our mind, attitude, basic viewpoint of reality (especially of ourselves), needs to be dealt with (broken) radically. Our being dealt with ("broken") may be called the END of SELF, the "mortifying (putting to death) the deeds of the flesh," the LORDSHIP of Christ, the dethroning of self, sanctification, or some other term. However, it consists of our giving up our own will so that His will can be done. Said another way: Jesus is Lord; self is no longer Lord.
The process of giving up our own will is also described in the Bible as "repentance", or being "turned" by God. Repentance means to change direction or "turn." As we will discover, it is God Himself who causes us to repent because He is the one who "turns" us by creating the circumstances which cause us to repent (turn).
What we will learn is that there are TWO things we come to realize in the process of "repenting:"
1. We are NOTHING
2. God is EVERYTHING.
So in the course of repenting, actually on the way to repentance, we learn who we are and who God is.
The timing of God's progressive revelation of Himself to us is illustrated below.
Psalms 80:3 Turn us again, O God, and cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.
Psalms 80:7 Turn us again, O God of hosts, and cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.
Psalms 80:19 Turn us again, O LORD God of hosts, cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.
Notice the repeated use of the word "turn" in conjunction with the light from His face ("shine"). Keep the "shining of [God's] face" in mind as you seek His face. The meaning of the shining of His face, or light from His face, will become apparent as we proceed.
Note also that as God "turn[s] us again" in verse 3, he is " God ." Later, in verse 7, the God that " turn[s] us again " has become "God of hosts ." Later, in verse 19, the God that has "turn[ed]) us again , has become "LORD God of hosts ." What we see here is a progressive revelation of who God is.
At first, He is known as "God." Then, we learn that He is the "God of hosts." "The hosts " are all His angels which He can send to fulfill His will. Therefore, His power and authority is so great as to be beyond our comprehension. Therefore, we have been shown God's power and authority, but there is more to come.
That which comes next is the addition of the word " LORD" making God the "LORD God of hosts." The addition of the word "LORD" is significant because it refers to the fact that the " God of hosts " has become our "LORD ." What has happened is that we have REACTED to God's revelation, having seen His power and authority, and have realized that He is our " LORD ." One's Lord is one's master, his boss, the one in charge. Once we reach this state we have given up our own will (due to constant failure) and have realized He is in charge of our life and He can not fail..
[May I say that I know this only because of personal defeat, failure, and PAIN. May I say that being "between the rock and the hard place" means between Jesus Christ (the rock) and our circumstances. I suffered loss and had painful struggles to arrive at this point. In all this I learned to rely on the LORD only. He made my failures a "thigh out of joint " from which I will always walk with a limp. There will never be a time when I can boast of my strength again. I am thankful to God. Where I was once proud of my own works; I have been brought down. The Lord did create a crisis, but he had also been at work gradually SUBTRACTING from me for years. The biggest sin of all is pride and self reliance .
We are to labor to "enter into God's rest." "Resting" in God is impossible for self reliant, proud people. If His yoke is easy and His burden is light, why are so many of us working so hard? Why are we so burdened by duty, especially Christian duty? This burden can not be the fruit of the spirit. Except ye become as a little child, you can not enter into God's kingdom. Children depend on their father. Being in God's Kingdom is being in the spiritual realm where all outward measures are abandoned so we can "wait on the Lord." If you are not "waiting on the Lord" and have not "entered into His rest", you are not bearing spiritual fruit, but are struggling in the FLESH. Why is this?
Pride keeps us from giving up the FLESH. FLESH is any and all self-initiated work . The question is what is the SOURCE of what you do? The question is not WHAT you do. Do your actions, thoughts, viewpoints come from self or from God? The answer to this questions tells us if we have entered into God's rest. The FLESH is not just "bad things"; the FLESH is all things initiated by self, even "good."
How do we "enter into God's rest?" When it is done, how will we know? To bear fruit a seed must be "buried." Once you are "dead" and the FLESH is gone, the spirit of God can then be expressed in your "temple." The very "life" of God Almighty (in you) can be imparted to others only after the husk has fallen to the ground. Then, the "life" that all the believers need will emerge with no effort whatsoever. To turn away from the FLESH to the spirit we must repent . One thing - the way UP is found only by going DOWN. The FLESH rebels at this constantly. This "one thing" is contrary to everything in our society and contrary to the very nature of man himself. The problem is that everyone wants to be "resurrected" but nobody wants to "die." Even Jesus did not resurrect Himself. He "lay down" His life and the Father "raised Him." Are we any different? Lay down the self and the Almighty will raise you up.]
[One other thing- if God spoke to Balaam through an ass and he used you to speak today, can you think too highly of yourself? ]
Why is all this so necessary? The answer lies in the utter depravity of the nature of man as a result of his fallen state. Man has absolutely no ability to approach God. Man does not even have the ability to have faith. He is utterly fallen and without hope on his own. So, then, how can a man have faith or repent? We know that a man is given fath. Faith actually comes after the Almighty acts upon a man with the Word of God and the preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. How about repentance?
The process of accomplishing repentance is the work of God, not our own. Remember that He is the "author AND finisher of our faith ." Repentance occurs when we come face to face with OUR OWN INADEQUACIES and we are at the "end of our rope." The Lord's work in bringing us to the end of self is seldom recognized because it comes in ways that are difficult to accept. We like to say that the things we see could not be His work. The following verse presents this truth.
Jeremiah 5:12 They have belied the LORD, and said, It is not he; neither shall evil come upon us; neither shall we see sword nor famine: (Some say that "prosperity" is the measure of Christians. They say that we will have no " evil ", no difficulties such as " sword " or " famine ."
Jeremiah 5:13 And the prophets shall become wind, and the word is not in them: thus shall it be done unto them.
When faced with the difficulties, they say " it is not he."
To these, the prophets have become "wind". The Word of God "blows" by without signification.
In other words, when we say that "evil", " sword ", or " famine " (or any other "problem") is "not he " we " have belied [called Him a liar] the LORD ." When we take this position that God could not be behind our circumstances , the Word of God is blowing by us just like "wind." We can't see it, we don't know where it came from, and we don't now why it is " blowing ."
Why does God use difficulties ("evil") to teach us? What is His message? Answer - He wants us to be defeated so that we will rely on Him, not ourselves.
What is at the root of our self reliance problem?
There is a strong element of PRIDE, the most deadly and subtle of sins, that must be searched out and rooted up from the depths of our being. This pride often manifests itself in RELIGIOUS practices and beliefs and therefore is disguised as "rightness". Pride is the sin that enthrones self. It is the sin that keeps other sins " secret ."
John 3:30 He must increase, but I must decrease . (Subtraction must take place on my self. Self must decrease.)
Psalms 90:8 Thou hast set our iniquities before thee, our secret sins in the light of thy countenance.
(His light shines on our secret sins. It is the light from His person that causes us to see. His countenance is his face. Being " face to face" or "seeking his face " sheds light on us and we see our sins when he judges us. To be face-to-face means to know a person. He judges us by His Word causing us to judge ourselves. When we come face-to-face with Jesus, we can judge ourselves by his example of "obedience unto death ." Knowing Jesus himself is EVERYTHING . Seeking the Lord means being prepared to have your "secret " sins revealed to you. These sins are secret because they are unknown to the sinner himself . Now you see why his face shines on us.
Psalms 19:12 Who can understand his (OWN) errors? cleanse thou me from secret faults . (We are unable to understand our own faults without light. These sins are indeed " secret " because they conceal rebellion/pride.)
To get rid of these secret faults, God has the following plan:
Proverbs 3:11-13 My son, despise not the chastening of the LORD; neither be weary of his correction: For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth. Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding .
The SORES and the WOUNDS you experience are the Work of God Himself:
Behold, HAPPY is the man whom God CORRECTETH: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: For HE maketh sore , and bindeth up: HE woundeth, and his hands make whole . -- Job 5:17-18
It is better to cry [after being rebuked] than to make merry with fools.
Making us "happy" is NOT the WAY God works with us. "Happy" is an end, not a means to an end.
It is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting: for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart. Sorrow is better than laughter : for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better. The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning; but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth. It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise, than for a man to hear the song of fools. -- Ecclesiastes 7:2-5
Psalms 38:2 For thine arrows stick fast in me, and thy hand presseth me sore . (It is GOD HIMSELF who is sticking you and pressing you sore to get rid of these secret faults. Receive his arrows. God is using the situation you are in now. He does mine.)
Psalms 119:71 It is good for me that I have been afflicted ; that I might learn thy statutes.
(AFFLICTION gives us KNOWLEDGE of the LORD. He CHOSE to suffer affliction. Knowing his statutes is more than knowing his word. See Psalm 147:19. Jacob became Israel after he wrestled with God. Understanding his statutes requires a great wrestling. Jesus wrestles to defeat us. To win you must lose. See Gen 32:25.)
Psalms 4:1 To the chief Musician on Neginoth, A Psalm of David. Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness: thou hast enlarged me when I was in distress ; have mercy upon me, and hear my prayer. (We get ENLARGED when we are in DISTRESS. Distress subtracts until you "find nothing.")
Hebrews 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth . (We can NEVER be received without "scourging". The cross of Jesus subtracts, scourges, from our ways. You see, he wants to receive you, but there is work to be done first. Should we worry?)
Romans 8:31 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? (NO ONE can be against us. So, let us stop blaming others. Let us confess our own sins.)
Leviticus 23:27 Also on the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall AFFLICT your souls , and offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD .
(In much of the standard commentary on this, it is said that there is NO New Testament equivalent for this. It has been my experience that there is. This offering, "made by fire", is our ownselves offered to the Lord, after having been through God's "fire" in our lives. Offering requires DEATH. )
Leviticus 23:29 For whatsoever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people . (This is the Old Testament equivalent of Heb 12:8 in which those not scourged are not sons. If YOU have not been humbled, you are not His. The light from the Lord causes you to fall to the ground, at first. Read about Paul.)
Psalms 18:27 For thou wilt save the afflicted people ; but wilt bring down high looks . (WHO gets saved? The Lord brought down my high look.)
Psalms 22:24 For he hath not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; neither hath he hid his face from him; but when he cried unto him, he heard. (When you reach an "end", a defeat, you cry out to the Father.)
Psalms 25:16 Turn thee unto me, and have mercy upon me; for I am desolate and afflicted. (I was desolate and afflicted. THEN I called on Him.)
Psalms 25:18 Look upon mine affliction and my pain; and forgive all my sins. (This is the very thing the Lord CAUSED me to pray.)
Psalms 34:19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all . (NOT few, not some; but many. He will put you into affliction and He will deliver you. It is all God's work, He and He alone is worthy, He earns all your "crowns.")
Hebrews 5:8 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; (THE LORD HIMSELF learned obedience. This verse was a seriously convicting message for me. If the LORD learned obedience, what do you think we are to do? Get a PhD? Be a Bible Scholar? Become high and mighty? How did the LORD learn obedience? It says BY THE THINGS WHICH HE SUFFERED. I thought I knew the Bible. I was proud and lifted up. The LORD brought me down and then His Word healed me. Being in His Word saved me.)
Psalms 107:20 He sent his word, and healed them, and delivered them from THEIR destructions. (Our ways end in destructions; His Word heals us.)
John 5:30 I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me. (JESUS could do NOTHING of HIMSELF. Can we? Jesus had no "agenda", but His Father's.)
1 Corinthians 4:12 And labour, working with our own hands: being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it: (we are to repent of our own sins, not focus on others, even if they wrong us. We are called to bear injustices, not call for our "rights.")
1 Corinthians 9:12 If others be partakers of this power over you, are not we rather? Nevertheless we have not used this power; but suffer all things, lest we should hinder the gospel of Christ. (Let's NOT get in God's way by taking the easy way out for ourselves or someone we love.)
Matthew 7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it . (You are in a selected few if the Lord shows you this.)
Philippians 3:8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, (ALL THINGS, except the LORD, are DUNG. LOSING them is a BLESSING, at first in disguise. Jesus of Nazareth is EVERYTHING.)
The Objective for Every Believer
Philippians 3:10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; (We suffer so that we can KNOW HIM PERSONALLY, AFTER being made conformable unto His D E A T H.)
Philippians 4:12 I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. (Awesome is our God. The only way to understand the Bible is for the Lord to reveal it to you.)
2 Timothy 1:12 For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know WHOM I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day. (HE is ABLE! We KNOW a person, not a doctrine. We KNOW it is HIS work, not our own. That is why our salvation is sure.)
2 Timothy 2:12 If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us: (Read about Peter's denial)
2 Timothy 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution . (Not might, but shall.)
Hebrews 2:9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man . (HE tasted it.)
Hebrews 2:10 For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation PERFECT through SUFFERINGS .
Hebrews 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. (Does He love us? Well, you want evidence that you are His? Are you chastened and scourged?)
Hebrews 12:7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? (I want to be treated as a son.)
Hebrews 12:11-13 Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. (GRIEVOUS now, fruit afterwards!) Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees; (Get 'em up in the air toward Him.) And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed . (Get on the straight path; stop wandering in your own ways. He has made us " lame " so that we can be " healed ". Notice that we are LAME . This is our BROKEN condition.)
The PROCESS of "breaking" us MUST be done in conjunction WITH the WORD of GOD. Look at the process as described by the INSTRUCTION BOOK. When you are BROKEN, SNARED, and TAKEN you are KNOCKED DOWN, TIED UP, and DRAGGED. While this is happening, you go forward awhile and then you FALL BACKWARD. Believe me, if you need to be SNARED and TAKEN, it is NOT to a place you DESIRE. That is why all works are from God. He drags you there and breaks you. No brokenness, no fruit. God break us, so, He made the fruit, not us.
But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be BROKEN , and SNARED, and TAKEN .
-- Isaiah 28:13
Hebrews 12:15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled; (Bitterness happens when we do not forgive our "enemies". We ought to know by now that we do not have any "enemies." If God uses our "enemies" to break us, then, our "enemies" are our "friends.")
Psalms 90:15 Make us glad according to the days wherein thou hast afflicted us , and the years wherein we have seen evil. (Praise the LIVING GOD, He made ME glad in my affliction!! He is an AWESOME GOD! He made my very life's circumstances. What love!)
Romans 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. (Being made " CONFORMABLE unto His DEATH , see above Phil 3:10, is the REAL PURPOSE of " all things work together for good ," Rom 8:28.)
What an awesome truth this is! All mouths are stopped at the beautiful work of the LORD.
It was December 12 at the Pelham Road Baptist Church Singles Dance and I was standing on the dance floor alone (no one within 15 feet of me) when I saw her smiling face and eyes and my heart leaped to ask, "WHO is this precious lady?" I knew immediately in my spirit that I needed to know her, even though I had no idea of the treasures that awaited us.
A miracle happened: she walked over to me and asked if we could dance before the night was done (Normally, Joan would never have been so bold to ask. I well know this about her now). We danced that night (she in "uncomfortable shoes") and both of us wearing hopeful hearts. Joan has shared with me her prayer that she prayed before the dance.
"Lord, will you introduce me to a Godly gentleman who seeks the Lord?"
I believe there are no accidents, but, there are instead MANY "God Winks!" We simply must Wait on the Lord and listen for His voice to speak to us. Joan's prayer touched my heart and I heard God's voice speak to me.
In the tender moments we have experienced together since that night, I shared with her that for 2 or 3 years the LOVE in my heart had been increasing. So much so was the love overflowing, I had asked the Lord, "Why are you giving me such a love?" "Lord, I can not keep this love inside my heart. I must share it. It is hurting me not to have someone to give this wellspring of joy." My heart was longing to LOVE. I had a burning desire to share what God had given me with God's children and I had a burning desire to give all my care to one special woman. Joan heard God's voice when I said "I want to commune with you."
From the beginning I have shared with Joan that all I want to do is share what the LORD has given me and relieve her of every burden and help her enter into God's Rest.
Then, one day I was texting her and these words came to her from my heart when I texted, We are YOKE-FELLOWS!
She began to weep. Bear ye one another's , and so fulfil the law of Christ Galations 6:2
I am crying as I tell you this.
We had begun to pray together that WE could be given a way to love all God's Children. As we shared this desire, we began to understand that we had begun to love EACH OTHER in a magical manner.
I knew from the beginning that she was going to build me up and take me to spiritual places where God could use what He had given us. I knew that I was going to uphold her and relieve her burdens. We both knew that our faith would be strengthened.
The Lord had shown us both to seek the broken hearted and serve them. In Isaiah we are so identified with Jesus Himself that we can say: Isaiah 61:1
The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;
And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noonday:
If you read this entire page, you will find that only a broken person can truly love and serve God and speak truth to His Children.
He will guide us totally in this undertaking.
The following is what happened to us at the Radius Church on Sunday night January 10.
The young man who gave the message lead us to James 5:16-18. You can read about the prayers of Elijah in 1 Kings 17.
Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
Elias (see footnote) was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.
The one who confesses his faults and prays for another is healed because he is in a broken state which enables him to pray an effectual fervent prayer.
And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 2 Cor 12:9
When we are weak, the LORD speaks. The question comes to - for whom shall I pray and what shall I pray?
Watch how the LORD does this:
After the message, the band began to play this song:
See what line is finished at exactly the 51 second mark
wonít you come and break this old heart of stone
Start a fire in these broken bones
As these 2 lines were sung, because of the previous witness of the LORD to me during and after the year from hell in 1988 and beyond (all described on this page), I began to WEEP for joy for I knew that the LORD was speaking to me RIGHT THEN, with Joan at my side praising El Shaddai, the Almighty God. Ohhhh what a blessing! Read this entire page, dear friend. The words at the 51 second mark matched exactly what the Lord had shed in my heart:
In Psalms 51 !!
Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. Psa 51:8
This work of God starts deep inside.
Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom. Psa 51:6
We "hear joy and gladness" from deep within our spirit and soul and then our body (bones/flesh that HE BROKE) rejoices ALOUD as we cry and sing unto HIM.
It is in this state that God calls on us to pray HIS WILL.
Now listen to what God did next.
We drove to Joan's daughter's house so Joan could deliver something to her daughter. Her daughter was having health and distress issues. [[To the chief Musician on Neginoth, A Psalm of David.]] Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness: thou hast enlarged me when I was in distress; have mercy upon me, and hear my prayer. Psa 4:1
Joan went inside while I sat in the car.
The driveway had 2 cars in it and so I parked on the street and my headlights were shining on her mailbox.
The number was 111 .
While waiting, I began to recall a book that I had read over 25 years ago called Theomatics by Del Washburn and Jerry Lucas.
In that book, the number 111 and multiples of 111 appear in the Greek New Testament to represent Jesus.
So, I knew Joan's daughter was living in the JESUS house.
This was my cue to pray for Joan's daughter.
The prayer was that God use her daughter's real life circumstances to bring her into a broken condition, make her give up, and so rely on GOD ONLY. At the time I was thinking that God would use a young man in the daughter's life to accomplish this.
After I finished praying, immediately I looked to my left and the Day Star, the planet Venus in the natural, began to clear Joan's daughter's roof line (thus confirming that the Day Star would arise in her heart). Using the planet Venus he confirmed that my prayer was heard and answered.
We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: 2 Peter 1:19
Exactly on the evening of the next day, a young man began to harass Joan's daughter with his vehicle. The daughter called Joan and told Joan what happened. Then Joan said to her daughter, Surrender to the Lord and rely on Him.
Psalms 38:2 For thine arrows stick fast in me, and thy hand presseth me sore . (It is GOD HIMSELF who is sticking you and pressing you sore. Receive his arrows. God is using the situation you are in now. He does mine and He will Joan's daughter.)
Oh the beauty of the SOVEREIGN God in our lives!!
God is speaking to YOU now, dear reader. I suffered much to be able to tell you this and count my suffering as a blessing that you can know the Sovereign Lord.
Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. Psa 100:4
In the temple wilderness, you had the gates (2), the outer court, and the inner court, and the Holy of Holies. In order for you to commune with God (who was in the Holy of Holies) , you had to be thankful and then praise His name.
As this page testifies, NONE of this depends on us.
Here is why:
It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes. Psa 119:71
Exactly 100 verses later-
My lips shall utter praise, when thou hast taught me thy statutes. Psa 119:171
You can not enter the Holy of Holies until God has broken you.
I learned a new word today:
noun Joan.nol.o.gy Joan-'na-le-gee
That heaven-sent magical phenomenon that makes a 68 year old man become 20 again
Read the whole 01-14-2016 section and you will understand (if you do not understand it now).
Footnote: Elias is the Greek form of the Hebrew name Elijah. Both Elias and Elijah are English transliterations - writing a word in one language according to the way it sounds when spoken in another language. In Hebrew, Elijah is pronounced ay-lee-yah, and in Greek, Elias is pronounced hay-lee-as. While most sometimes-a-little-too-simplified Bible translations use "Elijah" throughout the Bible in an apparent attempt to be "consistent," the King James Version is actually more literally accurate in using "Elijah" in the Old Testament (which was originally written mostly in Hebrew; see also The OlderTestament) and "Elias" in the New Testament (which was originally written mostly in Greek, and the Messiah's personal primary language, Aramaic).
"Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies."
Dear friend, WHERE is the feast table found? You just read it! In the presence of your enemies. If you have no "enemies", you will have no feast.
This is how God works.
Where does this leave the popular Book Prayer of Jabez ?
In fact, What WOULD Jesus Do? (WWJD) - Answer: DIE !
Job 42:6 Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes. (May I say that it is an indescribable feeling to KNOW Job, because you feel the same through experiences.)
Psalms 39:4 LORD, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days, what it is; that I may know how frail I am . (If you have run out of resources and there is NO WAY you can solve your own problems, you have been blessed by the Lord. You KNOW how " frail" you are.)
Psalms 39:5 Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee: verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity . Selah . (Man's BEST is ALTOGETHER VANITY; this means that YOU are TOTALLY VAIN regardless of your spiritual status.)
Proverbs 1:23 Turn you at my reproof : behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you , I will make known my words unto you.
(Please note the order of events: first, repent having been reproved,
second, He pours out His spirit and makes known His words to us.
(I can tell you honestly that my cup can not contain what the Lord is giving me.)
There is NO way you will repent (change your mind) until you come to the reality that it IS the work of the LORD Himself. He says "my reproof", not someone else's. He says "turn you at MY reproof." Then, (AND ONLY THEN), will He POUR out His spirit and reveal ("make known") the TRUE meaning of "His words."
The Ecclesiastes Chapter 7 Interlude (or FOR HER)
On February 13, I received these songs of love on a Valentine's Card from a beautiful lady:
I'm So Glad God Brought Us Together
I'm proud to be the one you love, and I thank the Lord for you- for your wisdom, for the kindness that you show in all you do...
For the values you believe in, for the generous way you live -
I'll always want to share with you the best I have to give.
I want you to always know how deeply I appreciate your efforts, motivations of your heart, soul, and spirit that beautifully show me how much you care for me, love me, and want the best for me!
Happy Valentine's Day
My precious Sweetheart!
I love you, Russell, with all of my heart.
On February 16, as the last notes of the Valentine love songs of February 13 were fading into the mist of "lost dreams", I received unexpected calls from my friends (Rob T and Mike B). Mike actually called while I was on the phone with Rob. These calls of support must have been providentially motivated because the callers knew nothing about the beautiful hope that had flown away from the garden it had daily frequented. I informed Mike and Rob the following: (a) We had the sweetness and light of Valentine's Week (3 concerts: In the Mood 40s Band Music, Furman Jazz Concert, and Love Ballet at the Chapman Cultural Center, and several nice dinners, and many shared Gershwin love songs on CD (including Not for Me*) and the songs of love on the above Valentine Card I received. My Funny Valentine was sung at the ballet and later at the dance at which we had met, how sweet!) (b) The next days (14th-15th) (because thoughts had been growing in the heart of the beautiful lady) she shutdown her heart toward our relationship (because it was difficult for her). Mike and Rob both said the same thing, "End It." I did not take their advice. I did not want to give up on her (because I LOVE her) even though it seemed she had given up on us. I knew there was joy to be had and I did not want her to miss it. Unfortunately, the feelings inside the lovely lady worsened.
Not for Me by George Gershwin
*They're writing songs of love, but not for me,
A lucky star's above, but not for me,https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MiI-iYp_b9Q
Nobody ever had such a LONGING for love than Judy Garland! (except me FOR HER)
So, nobody, could sing it like Judy.
On February 21, my son Greg called and asked, "is everything OK?" "Nothing significant?" he asked. Greg must have been prompted by the Almighty as well (to ask such questions). I lied and said nothing significant is happening. I was still hoping it would work and I would never have to tell Greg. But, the feelings of the lovely lady worsened in spite of my efforts (because of my efforts?). Well, it did not work, but.... it just might yet.
Providence must have been working elsewhere. My ex-wife, Wendy, told me that, on the SAME Feb 21st as my son's out-of-the-blue call of concern, she had a foreboding about me, a feeling of shared hurt, but she did not call because she did not want to intrude. Wendy (a dear friend), who has lived with me for 7 years as my wife from 1999-2006, knows me better than any woman living. We discussed my experiences on March 3 (and especially the spiritual aspects of it for an hour and a half) and she shared with me how God was working in HER. We discussed the 51 second mark and how Shane and Shane said
wonít you come and break this old heart of stone
Start a fire in these broken bones
Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.- Psalms 51:8
As a I spoke to Wendy about this, in a miraculous epiphany, she said this to me, "you have just tied this together for me; I am 51 years old." Today, March 5, we talked again for an hour or more and i asked if she believes that she had been washed by the water of the word as we spoke. She said, "yes."
Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.
Read this entire page (On Being Broken) and another one.
You may ask: what is that "crazy" Russell doing now?
When you finish with this 3-10-2016 update,
I DARE YOU to READ THIS WHOLE PAGE and ASK GOD TO TEACH YOU
First, I will tell you what and why I am doing this.
And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noonday: Isa 58:10
If I myself was not acquainted with darkness, how would my life be made as the noonday?
I am writing to SATISFY YOU, an AFFLICTED SOUL, with some BREAD.
Also thou shalt not oppress a stranger: for ye know the heart of a stranger, seeing ye were strangers in the land of Egypt. - Exodus 23:9
I have been a stranger in the "land of Egypt" and I KNOW your heart, MY FRIEND, THE STRANGER.
Friend, do you think we know God? Do you think we know anything?
Solomon, who WROTE the book of Ecclesiastes, knew that his Father (David) had KILLED his Mother's husband (Uriah). David sat on his throne after killing Uriah and Jesus Christ sits on the same throne!- Stephen 2.0 my nephew
Do you think Solomon was afflicted?
Do you think David was afflicted?
Are we any different?
Pay Close Attention to What I Am Saying because the LORD God has revealed Himself to (of all people) - me.
Here is what He said to me in a picture from my Bible: (sorry but the pic is upside down, hope you are on a cellphone, smile)
It is a fearful thing to FALL into the hands of the LIVING GOD- Heb 10:31
That is the ONLY way you are going to arrive in His Presence. FALL
If you are NOT afflicted, I am NOT speaking to YOU.
Now, you may say: "Well, I am NOT afflicted."
I have news for you: if you are NOT afflicted, you are not HIS, you are LOST.
Think about that, my friend.
As many as I love, I rebuke and : be zealous therefore, and repent. Rev 3:19
of righteous: but LORD delivereth him out of them all. Psalms 34:19
If you ARE afflicted, I am SPEAKING to YOU. And God IS speaking to you through your circumstances.
God IS in charge! If your circumstances are difficult, you might not be able to believe it while you are in the darkness. However, it
is MORE true then than at any other time. It is especially true when you are in the darkness and in the trough of His great waves over your head (as the men who go down into the sea in ships) . God is in charge when you are alone with the ALMIGHTY. That is the subject of this page, my dear friend.
For thou hadst cast me into the deep, in the midst of the seas; and the floods compassed me about: all thy billows and thy waves passed over me.
You, dear friend, ARE Jonah!! This is the time when you are ENLARGED by the spirit of God. This is the time when my brother Gary was ENLARGED while suffering through lung cancer. It is the time when I told him about Psalms 119:71 (it is good for me that I have been afflicted that I might learn thy statutes.)
Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness: thou hast enlarged me when I was in distress; have mercy upon me, and hear my prayer.
It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes. Psalms 119:71
exactly 100 verses later comes the result
My lips shall utter praise, when thou hast taught me thy statutes. Psalms 119:171
You may not SEE it and you may not FEEL it at the onset.
It is at this time of darkness when you are LEAD by God into communion with Him.
How does this happen?
He reveals to YOU that it is the LORD Himself who has brought you into the "Whale's Belly."
It is HIS ARROWS that stick fast in YOU! It is HIS HANDS that press you sore!
For thine arrows stick fast in me, and thy hand presseth me sore.
No one knows your pain, not your friends, not your lovers, nor your relatives.
You are alone in your pain.
My lovers and my friends stand aloof from my sore; and my kinsmen stand afar off.
I am here to tell you dear friend that HE IS WITH YOU!
The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit. Psalms 34:18
I have seen my share of divorce and I have seen my share of failed relationships.
In all this, it has been my DEEP desire to GIVE the Word of God to these women (and to everyone I know).
In a conversation with my ex wife Wendy last night, a remarkable thing happened.
Wendy and I have been apart physically and legally since 2006. Each of us has had his/her loves since then. From 1999, I raised her 3 children and her oldest, Monica, blessed me by asking me to give her away in her marriage of August 16, 2014.
What an honor and a blessing! Now, we are going to be blessed with Monica's baby boy in May.
I am going to be Grandpa again!
Wendy is going this weekend to the baby shower.
That marriage weekend of August 16, 2014 was awesome!
At the Friday dinner, Wendy and I sat together.
At the reception, Wendy and I danced together joyfully.
Wendy's Mom, Sandra, came up to me and said "We miss you sooo much!" and "Monica would not be where she is without you."
Sandra's husband, Jim, thanked me for "all you did for Monica."
Monica said "I would not be who I am without you!"
All the gossip and all the questions were-
Why are Russell and Wendy so amicable?
Are they actually divorced?
Are they going to get back together?
Last night Wendy said, "The answer to these questions is this - it is the SPIRIT OF GOD in us."
It is the same Spirit of God that was in me when I went to the Michelin cafeteria last week and hugged all the women that worked as servers (their worked received little gratitude). I asked my friend Robert at Michelin to get me in the building per security regulations. Robert witnessed the whole thing and said 2 days later,
"I can not stop thinking about what I saw," said Robert.
"I could not believe what I was watching. It was Jesus who hugged those women."
Robert sent me a link to a song he said "you will know the meaning of"-
the POWER of LOVE by Huey Lewis and the News.
As Wendy and I wound down our conversation last night,
I asked her this question,
"Do you think this is the first time that the following verses were fulfilled by divorced people?"
Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
We both howled in laughter and gratitude to God. How marvelous is our God!
The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.
Wendy and I are just friends.
One more thing. I said this to Wendy- Our conversation is redemptive to me because God IS at work in YOU and me.
Now, dear friend, what is it you need to STOP doing?
Ye shall defile also the covering of thy graven images of silver, and the ornament of thy molten images of gold: thou shalt cast them away as a menstruous cloth; thou shalt say unto it, Get thee hence - Isa 30:22
Get rid of those COVERINGS of GRAVEN images, which are those things you worship
Get rid of those ORNAMENTS of MOLTEN images.
Notice that GRAVEN and MOLTEN are done directly by men's hands or indirectly by men's hands.
Either way they are not done by God Himself.
Notice that all your obligatory SERVICE to God is nothing but COVERINGS (hiding the truth) and ORNAMENTS (which change NOTHING inside of you) and are equivalent to a MENSTRUAL cloth.
Throw the Tampons in the TRASH CAN, dear friend!
Men, throw your Tampons in the trashcan too!
God Himself said, Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them Isa 1:14
In modern English, I HATE YOUR PROGRAMS, they are COMPETING WITH ME.
In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider: God also hath set the one over against the other, to the end that man should find nothing after him. After whom? After God Himself. And this from February 28 of My Utmost for His Highest: If we do something simply out of a sense of duty, we are trying to live up to a standard that COMPETES with Jesus Christ. We become a prideful, arrogant person, thinking we know what to do in every situation. We have put our sense of duty on the throne of our life, instead of enthroning the resurrection life of Jesus.
And from January 18 of My Utmost for His Highest
The greatest competitor of true devotion to Jesus is the service we do for Him.
By the way, the title of the January 18 lesson is
It's The LORD!
It is NOT us, friends, or our service to Him, friends. It is the LORD Himself.
When i saw that title, I could not help but die laughing because I knew what it meant before I read the text.
It's The LORD!
Stop competing with Jesus and enter into His Rest and Wait for Him.
The truth shall make you FREE.
End 03-05-2016 (end parenthetical)
Here are my thoughts on the Ecclesiastes Chaper 7 Interlude:
A good name is better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day of one's birth.
It is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting: for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart.
Sorrow is better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better.
The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning; but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth.
It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise, than for a man to hear the song of fools.
For as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of the fool: this also is vanity.
Surely oppression maketh a wise man mad; and a gift destroyeth the heart.
Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: andthe patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.
Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools.
Say not thou, What is the cause that the former days were better than these? for thou dost not enquire wisely concerning this.
Wisdom is good with an inheritance: and by it there is profit to them that see the sun.
For wisdom is a defence, and money is a defence: but the excellency of knowledge is, that wisdom giveth life to them that have it.
Consider the work of God: for who can make that straight, which he hath made crooked?
In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider: God also hath set the one over against the other, to the end that man should find nothing after him. After whom? After God Himself. And this from February 28 (today!) of My Utmost for His Highest: If we do something simply out of a sense of duty, we are trying to live up to a standard that COMPETES with Jesus Christ. We become a prideful, arrogant person, thinking we know what to do in every situation. We have put our sense of duty on the throne of our life, instead of enthroning the resurrection life of Jesus.
All things have I seen in the days of my vanity: there is a justman that perisheth in his righteousness, and there is a wicked man that prolongeth his life in his wickedness.
Be not righteous over much; neither make thyself over wise: why shouldest thou destroy thyself?
Be not over much wicked, neither be thou foolish: why shouldest thou die before thy time?
It is good that thou shouldest take hold of this; yea, also from this withdraw not thine hand: for he that feareth God shall come forth of them all.
Wisdom strengtheneth the wise more than ten mighty menwhich are in the city.
For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.
Also take no heed unto all words that are spoken; lest thou hear thy servant curse thee:
For oftentimes also thine own heart knoweth that thou thyself likewise hast cursed others.
All this have I proved by wisdom: I said, I will be wise; but it was far from me.
That which is far off, and exceeding deep, who can find it out?
I applied mine heart to know, and to search, and to seek out wisdom, and the reason of things, and to know the wickedness of folly, even of foolishness and madness:
And I find more bitter than death the woman, whose heart is snares and nets, and her hands as bands: whoso pleaseth God shall escape from her; but the sinner shall be taken by her.
Behold, this have I found, saith the preacher, counting one by one, to find out the account:
Which yet my soul seeketh, but I find not: one man among a thousand have I found; but a woman among all those have I not found.
Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions.
Well, the relationship ended at 1240PM. (actually on February 16 or before)
1 Corinthians 13:2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing . (This convicted me to the core, because I was proud of my knowledge, was critical in spirit. For any injustice that I may have endured, it is my own failures that God dealt with in my heart.)
Psalms 51:17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart , O God, thou wilt not despise.
(God received me when broken. I have learned a little about the love of the Father, especially when separated from my son, David, who was in a terrible situation over which I had no control) When tears come to my eyes, I remember that God gave His Only Son to die for us. This tells me more of His love than reading ever could.)
Luke 9:23 And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.
Matthew 19:30 But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first.
Matthew 26:75 And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly. (I wept bitterly when I, like Peter, came face to face with my own faults and my inability to follow the Lord. Then, the Lord had brought me to the END of myself.)
Psalms 139:23 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:
Psalms 17:3 Thou hast proved mine heart; thou hast visited me in the night; thou hast tried me, and shalt find NOTHING; I am purposed that my mouth shall not transgress . (He finds NOTHING when he has emptied us of secret sins. His work in us is a REMOVAL process. He "takes out the trash.")
Mark 14:29 But Peter said unto him, Although all shall be offended, yet will not I. (We all love to say we are not like the rest.)
Malachi 3:3 And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness. (He refined me in the "fire"; so that I could offer him myself.)
Luke 22:31 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:
Luke 22:32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren. (Notice that Peter is converted long AFTER he started to "follow" the Lord.)
John 21:18 Verily, verily, I say unto thee, When thou wast young, thou girdedst thyself, and walkedst whither THOU wouldest: but when thou shalt be old, thou shalt stretch forth thy hands, and another shall gird thee, and carry thee whither THOU wouldest not. (I prefer now to be carried, rather than walk in my own strength. I walked where I wanted. Now He carries me where I did not want. I no longer say, without being convicted instantly, that I am not like the rest.)
John 21:19 This spake he, signifying by what death he should glorify God. And when he had spoken this, he saith unto him, Follow me. (We have the capacity to follow by dying to self).
Psalms 51:8 Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.
(When we die to self, we are glad. When we hear our own gladness, we can rejoice because we know that HE BROKE OUR BONES, self.) THIS is what is meant by santification.
Luke 1:46-47 And Mary said, My SOUL doth magnify the Lord, And my SPIRIT hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.
The INSTRUMENT of "magnifying" and "rejoicing " is " bones ." YOU "hear joy and gladness "; you " hear " your flesh being glad. Your " bones ", the flesh, can now rejoice because YOUR soul and spirit have been " divid[ed] asunder " by the Word of God. [Heb 4:12]. The person, the soul, magnifies - the spirit rejoices . Hereby you know that sanctification is done.
John 17:3 Sanctify them through thy truth; thy WORD is truth.
Psalms 92:4 For thou, LORD, hast made me glad through THY WORK: I will triumph in the works of thy hands.
My life was (by external/worldy criteria) a success. My life was by my own criteria a success. However, step by step, piece by piece, all earthly things in my life that I loved were taken out of my heart and replaced by a longing to know the Lord and share the Word with others. Where I used to see sin in others, I see my own sins. (The biggest sin of all is the pride of self reliance.) It is difficult for me to mention a sin of another without experiencing an emotional pain, a deep sorrow, a hurt. The suffering of the Lord Jesus is something I have begun to learn. I learned this while separated from my son, David, who had his own burdens as well. He looked for comforters, but there were none, just like Jesus. He walked the valley by himself, just like Jesus. I have walked the valley by myself. Then I began to learn something about the fellowship of his sufferings.
Where I was quick to judge; I now hesitate. Where I knew much; I now realize that I know little of what I should. I spend more time listening (a difficulty for me). I have a great longing for serious and deep fellowship, not attendance, not study, but, real understanding. I wish for all that they could have what I have received . Where I knew doctrines; I now know the Nazerene. Where I could explain grace; I now know Jacob, Peter, Abraham, Job. The joy is knowing that they are just like me. The joy is seeing them fail in themselves and triumph in Him.
Once Abraham gave up, then did God Almighty appear to him. It was an old "dead" man who came to know the Lord.
Jacob relied on self, to grab and scheme, but, became "Israel." He wrestled with God. The Lord made him limp the rest of his life by making his thigh out of joint. God broke him.
Peter said he would never deny the Lord, said he was not like the rest, but, wept bitterly.
Job "abhorred himself and repented" turning toward the words of the Lord.
When you come to the Lord are you standing? Did you walk in voluntarily? Were you so righteous you DECIDED to enter the Holy of Holies? The following verse tells us how we entered-
Hebrews 10:31 It is a fearful thing to FALL into the hands of the living God.
Yes, by the time we get to Him, we FALL into His Hands in utter and TOTAL dependence.
Matthew 21:44 And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.
The "stone" is Jesus Christ. We all will either fall on this stone (in dependence) or the stone will fall on us and grind us to powder. In either case Jesus Christ is "the judgment of the world." His judgment will "grind us to powder" if we reject Him.
If we DO accept Him, we shall be broken. Being broken is a certain condition of a true believer.
Blaise Pascal, the believer who was a mathematician, said this: " The knowledge of God without misery leads to pride. The knowledge of misery without the knowledge of God leads to despair. The knowledge of Jesus Christ leads to both (misery and God) and is in all truth. Therefore, without the Bible (whose only teaching is Jesus) we know nothing ."
"The heart has its own reasons, which reason does not know. "
"Humble thyself, impotent reason." He is referring to the witness of the Holy Spirit. He is saying that man's wisdom (or reason) can teach us no spiritual truth. Pascal was loved by even the atheists because he was not self righteous, but told the truth about the UTTERLY HOPELESS condition of all men (apart from Jesus and the Word of God). He had a "night of fire" in which he had "sweet renunciation." This was HIS GIVING UP (renunciation) of ALL THINGS. When I read this I knew that his Jesus and my Jesus were the same LORD of ALL. My "night of fire" was witnessed by my brother Steve and my friend, Dave. I called them on the phone and told them.
Do You Have GODLY SORROW WHICH LEADS TO REPENTANCE?
Is there anything more contrary to the NEED for BROKENNESS than the current teachings of our society? Self esteem. Self improvement. Self help. Self magazine. Self worth. Self fulfillment. Where the Bible and especially the Cross is a great divider, the prevailing attitude is to include all in one, regardless of the foundation. A false love, a false unity, an unrepentant religion, a "try Jesus" alternative, a "care-bear" sentimentality is seducing us away from "godly sorrow which leads to repentance ." This seduction leads us by appealing to our pride which excuses us from sin by pointing to our own do-gooding as equivalent to the work of Jesus . The first mention of "self" in the New Testament is "I can of mine own self do nothing ." (John 5:30). This is the Son of God speaking.
Isaiah 30:20-22 And though the Lord give you the bread of adversity, and the water of affliction, yet shall not thy teachers be removed into a corner any more, but thine eyes shall see thy teachers: And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left. Ye shall defile also the covering of thy graven images of silver, and the ornament of thy molten images of gold: thou shalt cast them away as a menstruous cloth; thou shalt say unto it, Get thee hence.
(Once the Lord breaks you, you "see your teachers " and " hear ... this the way, walk ye in it."
You become tuned to His voice.
You throw away your works as a " menstrous cloth ." You wait on the Lord all the day. In the modern translations the message here, Isa 30:22, is lost as is the case most of the time, because the men who did this work were ready to correct the Word rather than be corrected by the Word. Remember that this work is accomplished in you by the Lord because you are...
2 Cor 4:10 Always bearing about in the body the DYING of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.
Does all this seem too hard? Too painful? Are there too many tears?
You see, there is a FINE LINE between WEEPING and REJOICING. This truth is illustrated in the book of Ezra when the "ancient men " who had SEEN the "first house" (temple) were SEEING " the foundation of THIS house [being] laid BEFORE THEIR EYES ." What was their response? Answer - open weeping and rejoicing which was so intermingled the people could not tell them apart.
But many of the priests and Levites and chief of the fathers, who were ancient men, that had seen the first house, when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, WEPT with a loud voice; and many shouted aloud for JOY: So that the people could NOT DISCERN the noise of the shout of JOY from the noise of the WEEPING of the people: for the people shouted with a loud shout, and the noise was heard afar off. -- Ezra 3:13
The SPIRITUAL REALITY of this physical "house " in the Old Testament and the men's WEEPING and REJOICING is an awesome truth. When we REALIZE that WE ARE GOD's HOUSE , " the foundation of THIS HOUSE [is] laid before [our] eyes ," we come to grips with the overpowering truth that God Himself is working IN US. This realization will come at a time when weeping AND joy are one and the same because the God of the Universe has " written His law in the fleshly tables of [our] heart . " Our very circumstances are His creation.
I cried tears of joy to know that HE made HIS house inside my very soul! What an awesome and beautiful God is the Lord Jesus Christ!
HOW IS A MAN SAVED?
There is No Such Thing as "the Good Ol' Days"; God says not to Speak of Them
God made adversity and God made prosperity so that after finding God Himself, we will find NOTHING else. So, neither prosperity nor adversity is God's will for us, but GOD HIMSELF is our delight. However, God wants us to treat both prosperity and adversity as two imposters. Remember, it is in the DAY OF ADVERSITY that we CONSIDER and learn the truth. Praise God for adversity!!
Ecclesiastes 7:10 Say not thou, What is the cause that the former days were better than these? for thou dost not inquire wisely concerning this.
Ecclesiastes 7:14 In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider: God also hath set the one over against the other, to the end that man should find nothing after him [GOD].
I put the above here years ago, but I wanted you to see it today-Russell
Please read the ENTIRE page- Your friend Russell
The Canadian Goose and I go back a long time. I have always loved them. They are loyal, protective of their children, mate for life and are beautifully instinctive creatures that the Lord made on the 5th day. He made the birds on the 5th day to show our heavenly destination and he made the fish on the same 5th day to show us that we must be "Baptised" with the Water of the Word in order to reach the heavenlies. The Lord does everything beautifully.
I do not believe I have ever told this story in a public place. Before you hear my story, read this to see how the Lord uses the number 51 to represent revelation. I had glorified and praised the Lord for revealing Himself to me. He showed me this by witnessing to my spirit (this page being an example), not by a calculator, computer, or abacus. In short, it is being "touched" by the Word of God (1) AFTER having been taken to GRACE (50, an amplified 5 of grace) through the fire. The story - It was my 51st birthday and I was driving down the interstate when I noticed a flock of Canadian Geese flying from my left directly across my path at that mile maker on the Interstate Highway, at that moment in time. They flew directly in front of me no more than 30 - 50 feet off the ground. They were flying in an unbalanced wing formation. On the left (as I viewed it) were 5 geese and on the right was one goose. So, as I counted them when they passed right in front of my car, it dawned on me that I had just received a birthday present from the Lord. The Lord delights in those who glory in KNOWING HIM and understanding HIM and His lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness. (See Jer 9:24 - for in these things I delight, saith the Lord.) My wife and I have 2 toy Canadian geese (like beanie babies) sitting beak to beak on top of our TV set, next to a painting of two Canadian geese flying side by side with the inscription Dreams can lead us to wonderful places. Canadian geese and I go back a long time.
So, you can understand my fascination with the Canadian Geese mates-for-life that return to the pond at my workplace each spring. They were always together. When one ate grass, the other was standing guard. You never saw one without the other, until last week, for the first time ever. My immediate thought was something may have happened to my friend's wife. Only the husband was on the water. It was a sad and lonely thought contemplating his loss. Then, thankfully, I saw her, building her nest in the flower bed. I had never seen it. Each day I went down to see the couple as they cared for their coming family. I researched the gestation period of the Canadian Geese and attempted to calculate the day the new family members might appear. [Of course, I was not on the water at night, when the happy couple enjoyed themselves. So, I don't know the start date. Others had only recently seen the eggs. We knew it had not been long.] I wondered, frankly, if the Lord would come for the dead in Christ on a day when I saw my first Canadian Geese family hatching. It was a blessed anticipation.
Today, I was down by the pond watching the Mama goose cover her nest. Oh, how industrious and caring she is.
One of the workers came by and said-
"She laid 5 eggs. We took 4 and placed them with the Vet for a National Wildlife Preserve. The other we shook so that it will not hatch (even though Mama Goose believes it will) and put it back in the nest. If we did not put it back she would lay more eggs and the baby geese would return here next year."
I was crushed. All I could think of was the compellingly beautiful instincts the Lord gave that Mother and how she would diligently and dutifully continue her work (and all for nothing). One of the ladies I worked with (Chrissy) was there and heard the story of what had been done. We both said - it is just wrong. It was too much for me as I watched her groom her nest with no chicks to respond. I left work.
My friend, Rob, noticed I was online after I got home and as we IMed I described what happened. (Tears flowed everytime I thought of the vain efforts of the unceasing love and care of that Mother Goose) . You know, that lone "dead" gosling died for the other 4 goslings and that is what Grace is all about. Grace can only be grace when a TRAGEDY has taken place. My friend, Rob, and I prayed that the Lord would cause the "dead" gosling to rise. It is a TRAGEDY that the Lord God said O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killeth the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often I would have gathered thy children together as a hen gathereth her chickens under wings and YE WOULD NOT!
The Lord is as a Mother Goose and he has gone to great lengths to care for us, save us, and deliver us. He weeps over His goslings and wants them under His wings. Say, yes, to Him today.
If you have ever lost a gosling, you know how the Lord feels. He gave His Only Begotten Son.
A contribution from a Reader (Don) who sent me these in emails. They were in all CAPS. I asked Don if he could get them in upper and lower case . He told me that typing is a physical difficulty for him, but, here they are.
Is our relationship any different with our children than it is with God and His children? The answer in most aspects is, there is no difference. We love our children, and He loves His. we correct our children, and He corrects His. we punish our children, and He punishes His.
So what is the difference between our relationships, and His? The answer is in His greatness. His love is beyond measure. It is so great that He allowed His only begotten Son to take on our sin on a cross to gain us back. It does not stop there though! He sent His Spirit to live in those who accept His Sonís death, burial, and resurrection.
Does God want more from our relationship than we are willing to give? From what I have experienced I say yes He does! We know He knows the best way in everything, and yet in many things we do it our way. Why? Because of the self in us that is groomed from the day we are born.
We can not have an intimate relationship with our God until self is broken. Broken is a strange word to associate with the perfect God, but that is exactly what He does to His clay pots until He has removed the self that separates us! Only those who learn to love His refining fire will become His!
Broken, I used to hate that word! To me it meant defective until God broke me enough times to see it as the road to perfection. Now I love the fires touch for without it I know the Father is not working. If He is not working then there must be something wrong because I know that perfection will not happen until we reach His kingdom.
Breaking, remolding, and the fire must be a continual process this side of heaven. It is the process that ensures an intimate relationship with our Father God.Father Godís son and servant, Don
Who do you depend on?
This is not a subject I am going to argue, refute, or otherwise challenge what you believe. I leave that to our God. After 30 years of being broken, remolded, and broken again I started learning.
After the accident I felt I had to do everything on my own to make it. Man was I wrong! Sure with my efforts I regained a lot, but it was never enough. I always wanted to show the world ( through my efforts ) that all my work was pleasing to the Father.
I thought each of nine operations, and all the trials, had brought me so close to Him, but in reality I had never gotten closer, and probably further away in some respects. Not for anything He did. It was more from the one thing that separates us all from Him. The root of our separation! Self
You see I still had to prove to Him I was worthy. What a sad thought! None of us are worthy no matter how much we learn of Him, do for Him, or even profess of Him!!! Until He breaks a person enough to surrender their will, and become as a child like He says in MARK 10: 15, and LUKE 18: 17 we will never enter His kingdom.
It does not matter how much of His word we know, or how much we do, if we donít depend on Him as a child depends on his father we waste our time.
Father Godís son and servant, Don
Letter from a Reader
I started reading your "Broken" message and you lost my interest at your first point, "We are nothing". I know that this can not be true because if we were nothing then God would not love us so much that he sent his only begotten son to suffer and die for us so we could be saved. I would be interested to see how you square these conflicting concepts.
Thanks for writing.
We are nothing. We are the problem.
If you read the whole Broken page, you will see.
God bless you,
PS 1 Cor 13:2 says if you have not charity, "I am nothing." The fact is we do NOT have it on our own. That is why we are nothing. If you let the verses on this page witness to you, you will KNOW you are nothing.
READER SHARES the FOLLOWING
We [husband and wife going through problems] were given a devotional to read together. The passage for Jan.17th spoke of a potters field, how the potters would throw the marred vessel outside of his shop. Over time, this area would become full of broken pottery. Because nothing could grow there, it was good for nothing except to use as a cemetery for strangers and travelers who had no other place to be buried. The blood money of Jesus Christ was used to buy the place where broken pottery and dead bodies were. It goes on to say that's what we are,shattered, dead, good for nothing. What hope is there for broken pottery ? Only this: if it can be heated hot enough and placed back in water once again, it will become usable and redeemable. So too, if we as broken pieces of pottery become, heated by the trials the Lord allows in us, warmed by the love He has for us, and washed by the water of the Word He gives to us, we begin to be reshaped and used for His glory. That referred to Matt. 26:6-7. Again, the Lords Word gives me hope. Thanks for your prayer Russell, the Lord is so amazing it is hard to fathom sometimes, even in the midst of a trial. I'll continue to pray for you .
Reader Shares This:
Charles H. Spurgeon was right when he was led to say ď I believe a very large majority of church goers are merely unthinking, slumbering worshipers of an unknown God.Ē If we have to be led in what to say and do to worship God, by others then we have no relationship except what others tell us. Hence we donít truly know God.
If we want an intimate relationship with God then we must submit all of self to Him. As it says in Mathew And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder. The stone being Jesus Christ, and the falling on is submission to Him. Without putting self to death we will not fully submit to Him! As God lead my wife to say ďbeing broken is painful, but the rewards are great.Ē
If we limit our worship to a set time frame, then it is for our own self, not Godís. That self motivation will lead to death as God says in Proverbs 14: 12, and . Even getting to know and hear God must be done by a broken and contrite heart led by God the Holy Spirit. Heís the one that will teach us, and lead us in all truth. Jesus Christ is the Truth!!!
Father Godís son and servant, Don
Please e-mail us with questions or comments today.
I might be wrong, but, the Bible is never wrong.