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Archive for the tag “Israelites”

Then the Lord will go out to fight…

beautiful valley

Life can get pretty difficult.  It gets more difficult when we see those who abuse, getting on well.  When it seems that the work of God does not move forward, but rather backward.  In our culture, we call that failure.  We begin to feel unsuccessful.

I believe that is why we are encouraged to stand.  We actually mimic the character of God by standing.  When we stand, we declare that no matter what may seem to be happening around us,  no matter what people may describe as failure, no matter how disrespected we feel in various circles, God calls us to stand.

Trick of standing is in the waiting.  How long do I stand?

How long Lord will it be when you start to fight for us and turn things around?  When do get some respect or acknowledgement of success?  When will you be honoured because of what you have done for us?

Yeah, I know, it sounds like God needs to make us look good for Him to look good.  So lets not go there.  Instead, we stand so that God can move forward and take over and receive the glory Himself as He moves through us.  Then those who have been abused get healed, those who work for God see fruit in their own lives as well as in others and the work of God moves forward.

I am not saying that when God takes over and fights for us that it will be a silent event – in fact, I believe it can be quite dramatic and eventful.  What is important to understand, what is critical for us in order to succeed in standing, is in the knowing that at some point, the Lord will go out to fight for us.  He will be the difference between life and death.  He is anticipating to surprise us with His amazing love and determination to see something happen in our lives and for us to be astounded of what can happen through our lives when we submit to His timing and His plan.

Pray that you might be found standing in the midst of whatever life has decided to through your way – and I looking forward to hearing how and when He will go out and fight on your behalf.

 

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Othniel

Sometimes I run across rather obscure individuals in the Bible that are recorded there because I think they are examples for what a leader looks like.

Othniel is one of those individuals that you see capturing an entire town for the love of a woman.  That makes him extra special – and that woman is a rather astute leader herself and she knows what they need as a family to survive and goes after it.

For some time we never hear about him again – it was a pure and simple love story.

Over time, the people fall away from God – there is a downward spiral of sin and fall into enemy hands.  The pattern of sin, sorrow, repentance and restoration – the cycle of sin – begins with the very first leader to restore the people back into a relationship with God.  That leader, who became a judge over Israel, was Othniel.

All this time he kept faithful to his relationship with God.  When everyone else was doing their thing, worshiping whatever idol seemed to be the flavour of the month, Othniel kept his relationship with God intact and followed only Him.

What an incredible encouragement to me!  When everyone was going one way – away from God – Othniel kept going towards God, even though that was not so popular a thing to do.  That is what made him who he was – a decision every morning that he would follow God – no matter what came against him.

At the end of the day, when people start waking up and realizing that they have strayed so far that they are totally outside of God’s grace, they look for someone to lead them back.  It is a hard road, requiring someone who knows the voice of the shepherd.

It helps when God empowers us for the job with His Holy Spirit, something we should be asking for each day too for we do not know the day that we will be called upon to lead.  The sure sign of God’s leading is that with Him comes peace.  In Othniel’s case – peace for 40 years.

That surely is a great story of someone who said they would commit to following God, no matter, and place their lives under the stewardship of God and lead others from that relationship.

 

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Normally, it takes only days

I mean there are two ways of looking at this – we know if we help or get involved and make the butterfly come out sooner it will die because the struggle creates the strength to survive and we have used the analogy many times.  What if it should only take days, but ends up taking weeks?  What then?

There are many, many times when I feel that somehow my life has been put on the shelf and God has forgotten me – I mean He still loves me and has a wonderful plan for my life – but for now, that means I am on the shelf.

I have to  say that I start thinking if maybe I have been rebellious or have missed the call or the opportunity has passed me by while I was taking detours.  Maybe it was my unbelief that caused me not to see the way.

It might all be true and then again it might not.  Maybe this was part of the training, part of the experience, part of the practice of being, and getting prepared for the ultimate task or adventure.  Maybe I needed to practice more obedience then disobedience, more to the still, small voice then the booming voice inside my head, maybe I had to learn how to take and keep taking one step forward instead of one step forward and two backward.

So with these thoughts I start breathing again, knowing that my trouble and struggles enable me in the run of my journey with Christ to go forward in my course to follow Jesus and to know that regardless of when that calling of direct and visible purpose may come, I am encouraged with the promise of spending eternity with Him.

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Come…

Every ingenious person, that is skilful in anything to do with mechanics, art, business etc., who can see something when there is nothing, and employs their thoughts to improve, have a creative manner, can turn nothing into something – are invited to come.

The basic idea has never changed – if you have a willing heart, bring it.

God dispenses His gifts; and as every person has received, so they must give. Those that are rich, must bring in materials to work on; those that are skilful, must serve with their skill: as they needed one another, so the work of God needs them both.

… so let’s go!

 

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