Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Tongue Thoughts

"Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof." Proverbs 18:21
This chapter in Proverbs has much to say about the use of the tongue. In the New Testament we have Ephesians 4:29, "Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers." There are many, many scriptures which speak of the need to use our tongue wisely.

"Casting down imagination, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;..." 2 Corinthians 10:5. This scripture we are all familiar with in our understandings of spiritual warfare.

As we live our lives in Jesus, 'the imaginations' and "high things" usually come out of our mouths; things like need, lack, illness, gossip, anger, worry, poverty, unfulfilled desires, blame, anxiety, despair, hopelessness, criticalness and negatives of every kind. Precious Ones in Jesus, these are "imaginations" and "high things" that we exalt over the knowledge of God and His total provision for us in all areas of life through Jesus Christ our Lord. True spiritual warfare is to agree with God and let that agreement be the stuff of our speech - to allow the creation to hear of His goodness and sufficiency in our lives.

The Lord would encourage us today to set ourselves in Him to be a "life giver," and not a distributor of death through the thoughts that get released through our temples. In the lavished grace that He constantly pours over our lives, we have the power to become life-givers and those who bless and allow Him to bless through us in every encounter.

Our Lord God is faithful! He will fulfill His abundant promises. As we live our moments today - let's let Him interlace our thoughts with His own and the speech of our tongue with His goodness. None of us are exempt from needing this reminder, and there is no condemnation in it at all - simply an alert - to be active in His goodness as we breath His grace today.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Come - Come - Come!

Our Psalm 19 web site has the details for our Friday Fellowship Meeting. Rev. Lauren Godfrey is preaching and Rev. Tina Hook is leading the worship ensemble. I am unable to access my domain, as the new operating system in my iMac has caused a blackout - literally - screen went black. So it is in the shop. I also have a MacBook, so will blog and put items on Facebook.

We look forward to Friday Evening and will have a wonderful time together in worship and Word. Do come if you are in our area.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Unscatter Your Thoughts

Prayer is often a problem for us. We begin with all good intentions, but before long, especially if we are not using a list of some sort, our minds wander off into whatever is occurring in our own lives and we simply do not seem to “connect” well with the Lord. We rise from our knees (figuratively speaking for some of us) and sense no release nor progress in what we have just done. As a result, we have many, many Christians with only a dialogue with the Lord as they move. Their time in quiet frustrates, or else puts to them sleep. So around and around we go - seemingly with no way to break the ineffective cycle. 

Our Lord is gracious and loving - always, so there is no condemnation in the above action, nor is there any progress really. For those who really want to move forward in their lives in Jesus and His word, this is a real frustration. A new book on prayer might help, for a short period of time. But nothing seems to conquer this dilemma for very long. What are we to do? 

I am not a big one for “how-to’s” for they all seem to how-to for a short period of time, fading away into another how-to that works for a short period - on and on it goes. So how do I relate what is inside me this morning without just producing another such “hot-to?” Well, maybe I can’t, but I will try. Last night in our Psalm 19 Friday Fellowship teaching, we worked with Colossians 1:1-14 in an understanding of “Increasing in the Knowledge of God.” The passage had a progression in it that we worked with in depth. 
  “6 The One being at hand into you as also in all the world, and is bearing fruit,
      as also in you from the day you heard and fully knew the grace of God in
      truth; . . .
   9 Because of this, from the day we heard, cease not praying for you and asking
              that you should be filled with the full knowledge of his will in all wisdom and
      spiritual understanding;
 10 for you to walk worthily of the Lord, into all pleasing, in every good work, 
              bearing fruit and growing into the full knowledge of God;...”    

You will not recognize the translation, because it is my own. I am sorry for it’s sometimes stilted language - I am just attempting to allow us to see some things contained within the text that we sometimes miss in our easy English. The portion underlined is all the same work root in the Greek and carries the idea of a knowledge of items and persons that is based not on what has been read or related to us, but on our own experience with the person. Please notice the progression. 1. We relax into the full knowledge (the total receiving and trusting) of His grace in and through our lives; 2. We have in that rest of grace the potential of becoming filled with the full knowledge of His will (in all wisdom and understanding). That is just another way of saying His heart. For the word means will, bent, inclination etc... So it is not at static word, but a personal one. We can in this grace become so acquainted with Him that His will is known instantly within us at all times. Amazing! Then, 3. the potential is there for us to know Him deeply and “fully” as we grow in this personal, experiential knowledge of Him.  
What an amazing progression! Notice that it begins with the “full knowledge of His grace.” As we trust Him and rest in Him, these matters begin to unfold in us. What a satisfying prayer-life: to know He has heard and is answering, long before anything is ever seen. To grow deeper and deeper in Him in every portion of our lives - what a marvelous invitation. 

As we purposely enter this rest of grace, we can “unscatter” our thoughts as we work in Him. I use journaling. Oh not the typical type of journal, but a prayer journal, where I write our my thanksgivings, and adoration and requests. But I don’t just write them out, I use this to share them with Him, and then He begins to share with me, and wonder of wonders, my (our) time becomes one of deep peace, rest, acceptance and revelation. Journaling might not be what you would choose, as it is just one way to concentrate with Him in quality time. Also I purposely hear Him and interact in that space. I am finding it wonderful. In the rare time my mind does wonder, He is always gracious to wait for me to return my attention to Him. Sometimes, even in that “dreaming” of scattered thinking, He will share and intersect. He is so very gracious. 

So how long does such a time take each day? Well that just depends on what else is assigned for my day. I am learning to make space for my time with Him in this way as it is so fruitful between us. This type of interaction does not happen without studying the Word. For me the Word is a platform upon which to concentrate for a few minutes before “we” begin to talk. However, just the study of the Word will not produce the progression the passage reveals. It involves the Word very much, because He is revealed there - first and always. As the scriptures begin to be unfolded - we find our Lord Jesus, in a way we may not have seen before. 

Anyway, this was on His heart as well as mine this morning. Enjoy the Lord today. He is delighting in you. “God so loved the world ...”

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Rest, cont...

"Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him:
fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way,
because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.
Cease from anger, and forsake wrath:
fret not thyself in any wise to do evil."
Psalm 35:7-9 KJV

The concept of "rest" is still upon us this week. As I wrote in my journal with the Lord Jesus this morning, I felt Him instructing me about the above scripture (for those who follow my reading plan - it is today's Psalm). The rest and peace that He gives are not based on our activity or lack of it. There are times when we need to just be still before Him and receive refreshment from the flowing river of His grace, mercy and love, but the rest above is not that kind. Instead it is a rest that has great energy and forward motion. It is a rest that abides, no matter what the activity of the day, and it is a rest that refreshes in the Spirit in the middle of turmoil. When we enter this rest, we have great movement and creative ability in the Holy Spirit, and anything that He calls for us to do will refresh us inwardly. This is not activity born in effort, although much effort may be expended in its process. It is a placement of deep rest in the Lord and His Word. Such effort will tire the body as the movement is made, but will not injure. It will be an effort of power and energy. 

The movement may be as simple as cleaning house or the garage, or as deeply spiritual as teaching a class, moving in the prophetic or another spiritual gift. The movement is not the point - the rest is. Another word for "rest" like this is faith. Faith's interior action is rest - regardless. Anxiousness and fear are never faith induced - but distressed generated. 

So how do we enter such rest? Purposefully. Just do it - really believe in the love His has for you and that He will be true to His word for you and yours. In Him, this is an activity that is Spirit empowered and available to every believer. He will do it - we can trust Him!