Then he said to him, “Did not my heart go with you when the man turned back from his chariot to meet you?Is it time to receive money and to receive clothing, olive groves and vineyards, sheep and oxen, male and female servants? ~~~~~~2 Kings 5:26
Sometimes we take the sky for granted. We do not look up unless it looks like it’s going to rain. When it rains we pay more attention to the wetness of the water-soaked ground or the forgotten laundry in the backyard. We do not look at the sky or the rain. We look at things affected by the wetness. We also think about the inconvenience like the expected traffic jam on our way home after work or after school when all cars slow down due to the slippery roads or due to other more trivial reasons.
We look at our watches. We think about the possible lateness in appointment, the potential missed opportunity of pleasing someone dear or important to us, the probable mishap that might occur due to the delay, pros and cons of profits and losses in terms of resources spent or not-spent due to the delay in the traffic jam etc.
We think of loved ones waiting with disappointments and perhaps anxieties.
We think of the cold dishes we would have to force ourselves to eat when we eventually reach home. We think of the shower we badly need. We think of the bed…
It could be unpleasant to be caught in a traffic jam in heavy rain.
On the other hand there are a few who feel comforted by the rain. They look at the weeping sky. They see things that others do not see. They see an opening of the storehouses of water. Unseen hands unlocking and pouring. Unseen faces smeared with tears. Unseen eyes swollen with crying…with them as they cry in the cars or at the windows somewhere away from home or having none to return to.
There are also a few who like being in the rain. To them, walking in the rain is like taking a nice, cool, long shower. They enjoy the touch of the water droplets on their faces. They love the music of the wind and rain orchestra. They stroll leisurely and unhurriedly. They watch the others stuck in the cars, anxious and bored faces watching them in return. Sometimes they sing and dance along with the raindrops.
The sky is neutral. We put labels on it whenever it suits us. The sky weeps. The sky smiles. The sky is friendly. The sky is hostile. The sky is foreboding. The sky is welcoming…labels.
Today when you happen to be near the sky look up and see what you want to see.
Spiritual explanatory notes for the two latest haiku on the subject of ‘royalty’ and ‘day one’. I am a spiritual blogger and write mostly from spiritual perspectives. The royal color does not refer to the colors we normally see and associate with in the physical world. Race and skins mean nothing in the spiritual. God sees spirits (which we refer to as ‘hearts’). When we are born again in our spirit we become royal -as the children of God. We are who we are not because of our external physical presentations. We are created to bear the image of God (our Father in heaven). Our brief journey on earth is a journey home.
Genesis 1:1 New Life Version (NLV)
1 In the beginning God made from nothing the heavens and the earth.
And have made us kingsandpriests to our God; And we shall reign on the earth.”
John 3:5-7 New King James Version (NKJV)5 Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.7 Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’
For a long time, the traveler travels. He (or she) sees life, tastes life, lives life. Sometimes he mirrors life. Sometimes he evades life. Often he sits around at an invisible corner and watches life.
He likes a story named, Velveteen Rabbit. Here are quotes that impact his young life.
“Real isn’t how you are made,’ said the Skin Horse. ‘It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.’
‘Does it hurt?’ asked the Rabbit.
‘Sometimes,’ said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. ‘When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.’
‘Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,’ he asked, ‘or bit by bit?’
‘It doesn’t happen all at once,’ said the Skin Horse. ‘You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”
― Margery Williams, The Velveteen Rabbit
Does being real matter? Being hurt. Being worn out. Being very ‘shabby looking’ to those who do not understand the meaning of being real. The traveler once asked (when he was very young and tender).
The traveler traveled for a long time to many foreign lands and sat at the corner of many different events, sights, sounds, colors, purposes, missions, programs, activities, chores, causes, systems, worlds.
And he found that he actually had hind legs! Instead of dingy velveteen he had brown fur, soft and shiny, his ears twitched by themselves, and his whiskers were so long that they brushed the grass.
He gave one leap and the joy of using those hind legs was so great that he went springing about the turf on them, jumping sideways and whirling round as the others did, and he grew so excited that when at last he did stop to look for the Fairy she had gone.
He was a Real Rabbit at last, at home with the other rabbits.
At Last! At Last!
Autumn passed and Winter, and in the Spring, when the days grew warm and sunny, the Boy went out to play in the wood behind the house. And while he was playing, two rabbits crept out from the bracken and peeped at him. One of them was brown all over, but the other had strange markings under his fur, as though long ago he had been spotted, and the spots still showed through. And about his little soft nose and his round black eyes there was something familiar, so that the Boy thought to himself:
“Why, he looks just like my old Bunny that was lost when I had scarlet fever!”
But he never knew that it really was his own Bunny, come back to look at the child who had first helped him to be Real.
~~~~~~~~~~~~(Note from the traveler: The real rabbit is not shabby looking. He is beautiful.)
Quote: “Grief is something that each one of us encounters sooner or later. It cannot be avoided, but it can be dealt with in a positive way. Some of the most influential people in history became better and more compassionate because of the way they dealt with grief; others were thrown into a destructive spiral. This series will help you to come out of grief on the victory side.”
The series covers the following topic:
Your Situation Isn’t Unique
It Came To Pass
God Is Not The Cause Of Our Grief
The Source Of All Grief
Here is an excerpt of the article by the same author, Andrew Wommack.
quote: “The dictionary defines “grief” as, “deep sadness, as over a loss; sorrow” (NAHD). This is not limited to, but certainly includes, the loss of a loved one. It includes the sense of loss that many feel for those who died in the terrorist attacks. People grieve over the loss of relationships, careers, youth, innocence, and many other things.
Those who have lived any length of time are well acquainted with grief and know that it is an inescapable part of life. We cannot avoid all grief, but we can avoid all the destruction that grief can cause.
One of the first things I always minister to those experiencing grief is that their situation isn’t unique. I think this is very important. One of the devil’s most deceptive ploys is to make you think that no one else knows what you are going through. There have even been songs written about, “Nobody knows the trouble I feel, nobody knows my sorrow.” That just isn’t true.
The Scripture says very plainly, “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man” (1 Cor. 10:13). Any situation you find yourself in is not only experienced by others, but it is a common experience to us all. This is very important to understand. If Satan can make you believe your situation is unique, then you automatically exempt yourself from all help that is available. Regardless of how others attempt to help, you remain beyond their reach because, in your mind, they haven’t experienced your loss and therefore can’t understand or help you. That isn’t true….
In the early days of our ministry, people stayed away from our meetings by the droves. I was having a hard time coping with that. It was causing me grief. Then I went to some of Kenneth Copeland’s first public meetings.
He rented the Will Roger’s Memorial Auditorium in Fort Worth for a three-day meeting. That auditorium seated 3,500, but he only had one or two hundred there at the most. When I saw that Kenneth was experiencing the same numbers problem I was, it really encouraged me. It didn’t bless me that people weren’t coming to his meetings, but I took courage that someone whom I knew was anointed was experiencing the same problems that I was. Those experiencing grief need to see that others have experienced similar things and have lived through it. In fact, people go on to thrive, not just survive. .. Another very comforting thing to remember in a time of grief is that the situation is only temporary. One of my favorite phrases in the Bible is, “It came to pass.” That’s why it came: to pass. No tragedy is permanent. Even death is only a temporary separation.
This is exactly the logic the Apostle Paul used to comfort those who had lost someone they loved. .. Death is not a permanent split for believers. It is just a long separation. We will be united with those who have died. Remembering this will bring comfort (1 Thess. 4:18) and can even provide a lot of positive motivation.
Putting all our tragedies into the perspective of eternity also minimizes their impact on us. .. Romans 8:18 says, “For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”
Paul suffered more persecution than any of us ever have… His affliction wasn’t light because it was less than ours, but because he put it into a different perspective. He said his afflictions were light because they were “but for a moment” (2 Cor. 4:17). After a million years in the presence of the Lord, all the hardships of his life would seem like nothing. That’s true for all of us.
I once had a woman tell me about her terrible situation and ask for prayer for her marriage… I said, “Now, let me get this straight. You aren’t a Christian, and you know you are headed for hell; yet you want me to pray for your marriage and not your salvation?” She said, “Yes.” I said, “After you’ve been burning in hell for a thousand years, you won’t even care whether you were ever married or not. Your marriage isn’t the important thing. We need to pray for your salvation!” She agreed and I had the privilege of leading her to the Lord! We then prayed for her marriage…
Probably the most important thing I minister to those experiencing grief is that God is not the source of their grief. I believe this is absolutely essential. Anyone who believes that God directly causes their grief, or indirectly allows it to happen, is headed for trouble.
Many people are totally shocked at that last statement…
Look at 2 Peter 3:9. It says, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” You can’t get it any clearer than that. It is not God’s will for any to perish, but they do…
The Lord does everything possible to stop people from going to hell. He sent His only begotten Son to earth to bear our sins. He sent His Holy Spirit to convict us and draw us to Him. He sends laborers across our paths. Any person who goes to hell will have to climb over all these roadblocks that the Lord has put in their way. It’s not God allowing them to go to hell. It’s people’s own free will that God gave them which causes their destruction, not God…
The Lord is not insensitively standing by and allowing us to suffer. He is touched with our feelings (Heb. 4:15) and has sent His Holy Spirit to comfort us in whatever trial may come (2 Cor. 1:3-4).
This article covers only a very small portion of the material included on my four-part album entitled, How To: Deal With Grief. This is not just for those who have lost loved ones. It will reveal principles that will work to overcome all of life’s disappointments.”
Further thoughts on the word ‘return’. it is all about God. God’s definition on ‘return’. Let us look deeper and allow the current of the Holy Spirit teach us to swim in this vast ocean of uncharted waters. ‘Return’ is all about “Come back to God!”
(Bible verses from 2 Corinthians 5 (in parts) in NLT version.)
Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life. God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee he has given us his Holy Spirit.
So whether we are here in this body or away from this body, our goal is to please him.
Because we understand our fearful responsibility to the Lord, we work hard to persuade others. God knows we are sincere, and I hope you know this, too.
If it seems we are crazy, it is to bring glory to God. And if we are in our right minds, it is for your benefit. Either way, Christ’s love controls us. Since we believe that Christ died for all, we also believe that we have all died to our old life. He died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them.
So we have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view… This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to him. For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation. So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!” For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.
I am led to read ancient history and ponder further on the meanings of names and the destiny of a man changes with the choices he makes. The choices one makes in the physical realm impact the spiritual and open spiritual doors to life and death. Blessings turn to curses. Honor turns to shame. But God is merciful and allows repentance.
In the case of Aaron: he was duly inaugurated as the prestigious first high priest for the nation of Israel by Moses according to very detailed instructions (commands) given by God. It was a whole life appointment with hereditary continuation for his descendants to all generations after him. But on the very day of this inauguration his two elder sons took the matters lightly, did not know the importance to strictly follow the words of God, which are spiritual and not carnal. They used their own flesh (human ways and desires) to serve the holy God. Of course they were instantly killed by a consuming fire.
God’s words have spiritual implications and are not to be taken as man’s words. Jesus has declared, “God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” (John 4:24) Jesus also warned, “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words I speak to you are spirit and they are life.”
Aaron’s response: Aaron has learned from the tragedy. He accepted it and continued to submit to God and align with God’s words. His two younger sons followed his godly example and succeeded this prestigious hereditary appointment by God. The curse turned to blessing. Shame turned to honor, just as his name meant to him, exalted.
In the case of Balaam: he was given a chance to repent too. God allowed the donkey to see the angel with the drawn sword against Balaam and thus saved him from death. But Balaam did not repent. he continued to the way of self-destruction, just as his name meant to him, destroyer. He caused destruction to himself.
What the two events meant to us: the two names were interspersed with mountain and valley. Aaron started at the highest lofty mountain top, then he fell to the lowest valley spot (in the eyes of the Jewish congregation), but he soon recovered through obedience to God, and was restored to the originally exalted position again.
Balaam started on high position too. He could see the superficial spiritual realm and seemed to understand the matters of God’s plan for Israel. He also seemed to know God’s unchangeability, unlike man. But he fell to the bottom when he decided to follow the dictate of his heart which was filled with greed for wealth and power. He was nearly killed by the angel of death during the first incidence of his attempt to go and curse Israel because Israel’s enemy was willing to pay him a large sum. But because of his faithful donkey which could see the angel and saved his life twice, the mercy of God spared Balaam. God gave him a chance to repent and turn to the true God. But he preferred to worship mammon, worked for the enemy of Israel to kill many Israelites, until he himself perished at war.
We too experience high and low in our Christian walk. Our individual choices (regardless of names) make the key difference between honor and shame, life and death.
“The children of Israel also killed with the sword Balaam the son of Beor, the soothsayer, among those who were killed by them.” (Joshua 13:22)
The divine breakthrough has finally when the words of truth is being obeyed and applied in our daily lives in Christ. The mindman has discovered.
The revelation: Why are souls so easily held in captivity by the enemy from the spiritual realm? Because the mind is idle and embraces anything that does not require mind function.
It started with TV program. There is no requirement of the mind to be involved. A variety of ‘entertainments’ has become easily accessible and readily available at any point of time. Unlike books or even newspapers, there is no effort on the part of the viewers -captive souls.
Now the screen is at hand in the form of mobile phone or similar digital smart pads/tablets. One can access to anything which does not require mind work at any point of time at anywhere!
The limits of time and space have been overcome. A false sense of power surges in every viewer. One can even view another person’s (even stranger’s) life in the privacy of one’s own space and time.
Really, the attraction is incomparable given the current state of the human mind.
Revelation: How are souls being captured by the enemy? Is there no defense? (Not even for the Christians’ souls -minds and emotion)?
In my previous blog I have uncovered the fact that the mind has become accustomed to symbols and short utterances in lieu of words and languages. There is no real substance in those symbols and sounds (not human sounds designed by the Creator originally for our survival as human). The replacement of real words and sounds have taken away thoughts in the mind.
Mind without thoughts. Thought without words. The new generation of ‘human’ is here.
Why are words being robbed by the enemy? Why does the enemy bother with giving such rich variety of goodies of entertainments to replace words?
The Jews and the Christians who believe in God’s words know the reason.
The words of God are the power of God. When we feed our soul (mind and emotion) with God’s words and use His words which are planted in our spirits, we are saturated with His power. The power to live the life from God. The power to overcome the devil. The power to reign as ‘more than conquerors’ through Christ who loved us. The power to live the super-abundant life promised and given by Christ Jesus.
The robbing of words from the mind is therefore a key and deadly hit.
How do Christians counter this increasingly surging violent and yet subtle tidal wave that has robbed, stolen, killed and destroyed so many minds (and happiness) in so many families?
Our weapons are:
the whole armor of God. Ephesians 6:13-18
the mind of Christ. 1 Corinthians 2:16
sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7
sober mind 1 Peter 1:13-16
the peace of God. Philippians 4:7
“Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 14 As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, 15 but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy..” — 1 Peter 1:13-16 (ESV)
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8 (ESV)
“that He (Christ) might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, 27 so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.” Ephesians 5:26-27 (ESV)
A word of warning on how not to pollute our minds:
”An evildoer listens to wicked lips,
and a liar gives ear to a mischievous tongue.” Proverbs 17:4 (ESV)
The flow of words is like a river. Sometimes the surface is calm and still. But the current below continues. The mind tends to think words and meanings out of past knowledge and established wisdom. The mindman does not want to put those into writings as it would be a mere copy of something from the past.
So he waited and he waited. What is this undercurrent that he can perceive but cannot really grasp on the surface?
Here they are today. A few gems here and there at random. The respective list is not exhaustive. Each believer must do his or her own digging at the treasure mountain (the Bible)!
There are words that link to one another. They are like a group of friends. When you read one you must read the others. For example, here is a group of heavenly words that belong to one family (at random, except for the first three): God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, word, power, heaven, Almighty, divine, holy, glory, Lord, Savior, Son of God, righteous, authority, kingdom of God/heaven etc. what is their common denominator? They are heavenly. They are spiritual. They are linked to God.
Words that are used to describe just One. For example, God, Lord, Light, Love, Life, Almighty, Healer, Provider, Creator, Father. Another example is: Jesus, the Word, Son of God, Son of Man, Christ (Messiah), Savior, Redeemer, Lamb of God, Deliverer. However, because Jesus and God are One, the words that describe One may be used to describe another. For example, Lord, Light, Deliverer, Redeemer. The Holy Spirit too is God and addressed as Lord too (2 Corinthians 3:16-18).
Pairs of words that are opposite: for example, spirit vs flesh (body and soul – mind and emotion). Faith vs unbelief. The things of God vs the things of man. God’s way vs Egypt (Satan’s way).
Words that come as a group as a result of an action. For example, with salvation comes: forgiveness of sins, righteousness, justification, sanctification, healing and deliverance, abundant life, sons of God status, Holy Spirit as a deposit/guarantee, Abraham’s descendants’ inheritance by faith etc.
Words and phrases that signify a victorious disciple’s life: living by faith not be sight, spiritually discerned and having the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16), walk according to the Spirit (Galatians 5:16), led by the Spirit and not by flesh (Romans 8:1, 14), always watchful and prayerful (Luke 21:36), Bible-reading and believing (Ephesians 5:26), Christ-centered, Denial of self (Luke 14:33), living faith with works (James 2:22), joined to the Lord and one spirit with the Lord (1 Corinthians 6:17), and overcome the enemy of God (Revelation 12:11).
Pairs of words that bring out the same result: such as, living by faith and walking by the Spirit.
Jesus said: “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.” (John 6:63) The grouping of words here bring out one interesting but essential truth: Jesus+Spirit+life+words of God+the truth+liberty (when read together with 2 Corinthians 3:16-18; John 14:17, 26; John 8:32)
The word of God is light. The Lord Jesus is light. God is light.
When the word of God is read with faith and in the Spirit, it gives light. God is light and in whom there is no darkness. All dark things (including illness, physical and mental) must flee. Let God arise in us, and let God’s enemies be scattered!
Let all believers of Jesus as Savior and Lord enjoy the victorious life in which we can be totally free of the tormentor which came to steal, kill and destroy our peace, joy, and rest as promised by Jesus in the abundant life He has brought.
Today we only read one word ‘form’. A very powerful and crucial word for every Christian.
FORM: this is God’s special word. Only God formed. He created man in His image. He formed people for Himself, that they will declare His praise. (Isaiah 43:21)
Human do form physical building and organization structure. But in the spiritual realm they are of no permanent value. The only permanent structure is God’s creation. He created/formed human for eternity (having the image of God). There was no need for hell or death. However, man fell into the snare of the devil and lost the original design. The original heavenly form was corrupted and man encountered sins, sickness, and decays due to the power of death which entered since the spiritual fall.
When we read the word ‘form’, think of the majesty, the beauty, the awesome creation of God’s original design which bears His divine nature, His divine mark, His divine power.
I have taken the verses from Isaiah 43 to illustrate how God really cares for His people, those He had formed:
1 But now, thus says the Lord, who created you, O Jacob, and He who formed you, O Israel: “fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; you are mine.”
7 Everyone who is called by My name, whom I have created for My glory; I have formed him, yes, I have made him.”
10 “You are My witnesses,” says the Lord, “and My servant whom I have chosen, that you may know and believe Me, and understand that I am He. Before Me there was no God formed, nor shall there be after Me.
11 I, even I, am the Lord, and besides Me there is no Savior.”
The following verses is a beautiful illustration of how much God, the Creator loves and cares for those whom He has formed (do sing them and meditate on them).
43:18 Do not remember the former things, nor consider the things of old.
19 Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth; shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.
20 The beast of the field will honor Me, the jackals and the ostriches, because I give waters in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.
To give drink to My people, My chosen.
21 This people I have formed for Myself; they shall declare My praise.”
Jesus told us how we may become God’s new creation:
John 3:3,5-6 “Unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God…unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”
The Apostles taught us how to receive this re-birth
Acts 2:38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let everyone of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remissions of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
What happens when we receive this new birth?
1 Corinthians 2:12 “Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God,that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.”
2 Corinthians 3:16-17 “Nevertheless when one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” (in v18, we read that the Spirit of the Lord transforms us into the same image of the Lord from glory to glory).
16 Therefore from now on we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him thus no longer.”
17 “Therefore, if any one is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”
How did God create/form us? How do we know?
Hebrews 11:3 “By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.”
11:6 “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”
2 Corinthians 5:7 “For we walk by faith, not by sight.”