Good morning, beloved,
As I think I have shared with you, our family has begun memorizing large chunks of Scripture. We have memorized, the Apostle’s Creed and Psalm 15, this last month. It’s exciting for me, as I seem to have had so much trouble in the past years of AWANA land, to remember, to recall and to now move on to our next challenge. As I listened to the kids working through our next passage, if they could have sang, “watermelon, watermelon”, it would have made less sense. The words at parts are a little fuzzy and I began pausing and asking them questions about what they were able to regurgitate. They didn’t understand.
So, out the white board came, and we began working through the first couple of verses. I will admit that this can be a little frustrating for me as kids move around, touch things and generally appear to not be listening. However, when I asked for a recap, I was pleased by their recollection.
Yet, the blessings were manifold for me. I had never looked at this well known passage by taking it apart as we were doing. At first, I felt a little rocky, but I hit my stride and I think everyone was a little pleased I limited us to two verses. Ahem. (See most of my posts if you don’t know to what I am hinting..)
When I was turning in my mind, praying as to what I was to discuss, this song was the first on Pandora. Okay, Lord, let’s do it. And now this song comes in,
Want to guess what passage we are studying?
I may speak in ·different languages [L tongues; 12:10, 29, 30] of people or even angels. But if I do not have love, I am only a ·noisy [resounding] ·bell [gong] or a ·crashing [clanging] cymbal. 2 I may have the gift of prophecy. I may understand all ·the secret things of God [L mysteries] and have all knowledge, and I may have faith so great I can move mountains. But even with all these things, if I do not have love, then I am nothing.
1 Corinthians 13 EXB
So we just dived in.
I may speak in different languages…we know Paul, himself, must have known at least Hebrew, Greek, possibly Aramaic, and possibly Latin. He was an incredibly gifted man. I realize as I try to research these first few verses, not many speak about who is the “I”. Paul was never bashful in sharing the good and the bad (see Romans 7) that was within him. So, he spoke many languages. The word languages (glōssa):
the tongue, a member of the body, an organ of speech
the language or dialect used by a particular people distinct from that of other nations
You may be able to speak their language. You may EVEN understand the language of the angels. Think of Paul’s life before the road to Emmaus. He was on that road, angry, bitter and revengeful, ready to rout these meddling Christians. Then Paul met Jesus, or rather, Jesus met Paul. Before? Paul was a gong. He was a crashing, clanging cymbal. After? welcome to the New Testament, friends. Love.
Love with Jesus standing before, behind and beside you. Me. That’s love. Otherwise, our feeble attempts alone?
Chain sizzlers in position on cymbals. Photo by Andrew Alde
I may have the gift of prophecy… Oooh. The kids and I were amazed at the words here. Easy to speak these words..
prophēteia: the gift of “the speaking forth of the mind and counsel of God”
The mind and counsel of God?
33 ·Yes [L O], ·how great are [L the depth of] ·God’s riches and wisdom and knowledge [or the riches of God’s wisdom and knowledge]! ·No one can explain [L How unsearchable are…] ·the things God decides [God’s judgments] ·or understand [L …and untraceable…!] his ·ways [paths]. 34 As the Scripture says,
“[L For] Who has known the mind of the Lord,
or who has been ·able to give him advice [his counselor; Is. 40:13]?”
35 “·No one [L Or who…?] has ever given God anything
that he must pay back [Job 41:11].”
36 ·Yes, God made all things, and everything continues through him and for him [L Because all things come from him, through him and for him]. To him be the glory forever! Amen. Romans 11 EXB
The Center of the Milky Way
Pause and calmly think of that! Rather then utter words on your own, pray His Word back to Him. This is what I am learning. This is why I am becoming such a huge fan of memorizing. We all have our own ways to memorize, thanks be to God, I’ve found a way. You? You need to find the Word in your heart. I need to KEEP His word in my heart. Then when we pray for people, we don’t suppose to understand the mind of God, we speak the word of God.
I may understand all the secret things of God…
I think I’m just going to let Jesus take this one.
10 The ·followers [disciples] came to Jesus and asked, “Why do you ·use stories to teach the people [L speak to them in parables]?”
11 Jesus answered, “·You have been chosen [L It has been granted/given to you] to ·know [understand] the ·secrets[mysteries] about the kingdom of heaven, but ·others cannot know these secrets [L it has not been given/granted to those others]. 12 Those who ·have understanding [L have] will be given more, and they will have ·all they need [an abundance]. But those who do not ·have understanding [L have], even what they have will be taken away from them. 13 This is why I ·use stories to teach the people [L speak in parables]: [L Because] They ·see [look], but they don’t ·really see [perceive]. They hear, but they don’t really hear or understand. 14 ·So they show that the things Isaiah said about them are true [L In them the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled that says]:
‘You will ·listen and listen [keep on hearing; or listen intently], but you will not understand.
You will ·look and look [keep on seeing; or look intently], but you will not ·learn [perceive; comprehend].
15 For the ·minds [hearts] of these people have become ·stubborn [dull; calloused; hardened].
They ·do not [hardly] hear with their ears,
and they have closed their eyes.
Otherwise they might see with their eyes
and hear with their ears.
They might really understand ·in their minds [with their hearts]
and ·come back [turn; return] to me and ·be healed [I would heal them; Is. 6:9–10].’
16 But ·you [L your eyes] are blessed, because you see with your eyes and hear with your ears. 17 I tell you the truth, many prophets and ·good [righteous; just] people ·wanted [longed] to
Warped Galactic Ring
see the things that you now see, but they did not see them. And they ·wanted [longed] to hear the things that you now hear, but they did not hear them. Matthew 13 EXB
25 ·Glory to God [L Now to the one] who can make you strong in faith ·by [or in accord with] ·the Good News that I tell people[L my Gospel] and ·by [or in accord with] the ·message [preaching; proclamation] about Jesus Christ. The message about Christ is the ·secret [mystery; 11:25] that was hidden for long ages past but is now ·made known [revealed; disclosed]. 26 It has been ·made clear [revealed; disclosed] through the writings of the prophets. And by the command of the eternal God it is ·made known [revealed; disclosed] to all ·nations [Gentiles] ·that they might believe and obey [or for the obedience that follows faith; L for the obedience of faith]. Romans 16 EXB
But, if you understand all of this, but have not love? (Oh, I know I’m skipping..) I am, you are nothing. I don’t want to be nothing. If I am allowed into the mysteries of God, yet I don’t share, I don’t live..love…
I may have a faith that moves mountains…
Now I’m going to James have the floor:
16 [L Therefore,] Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so God can heal you. ·When a believing person prays, great things happen [L The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective]. 17 Elijah was a human being just like us. He prayed [earnestly; L with prayer] that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years! 18 Then Elijah prayed again, and ·the rain came down from the sky[or heaven gave rain], and the land produced crops again [1 Kin. 17—18]. James 5 EXB
That is our faith, friends. That is what is available to us. Elijah was just like us?
No love, though? Judgmental thoughts, gossip, anger held, forgiveness withheld? Ahem.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by a great cloud of ·people whose lives tell us what faith means [L witnesses], let us run the race that is before us ·and never give up [with endurance/perseverance]. ·We should [Let us] ·remove from our lives[get rid of; cast aside] anything that ·would get in the way [impedes/hinders us] and the sin that so easily ·holds us back[entangles/clings to us]. 2 Let us ·look only to [keep our eyes on] Jesus, the ·One who began [Pioneer/Founder of; orLeader/Prince of] our faith and who ·makes it perfect [completes it]. He ·suffered death on [L endured] the cross, ·accepting the shame as if it were nothing [L disregarding/despising the shame] because of the joy that ·God put before [lay ahead for]him. And now he is sitting at the right ·side [L hand] of God’s throne [1:3; 13; Ps. 110:1]. 3 Think about Jesus, who endured such ·hostility [opposition] from sinful people, so that you will not ·get tired [grow weary; get discouraged] and ·stop trying[give up]. Hebrews 12 EXB
See what I mean about keeping myself to two verses? Oh, Lord, steal my show.
Hey, just an update about this family. I continued my road with my injections and since they are confident to the parts of my nerves in my neck that are damaged, we went to the next step yesterday. You can read about it here. I had one side of my neck done yesterday. The next side will be next Thursday, your prayers are coveted. Your encouraging notes are blessing. God’s word is so amazing isn’t it? And we are the body…
Heat restoration in my house began in earnest yesterday. We will be fully ensconced in the warm bliss of heat by next Tuesday. Praise God!
Please keep praying for my boy. He is having such a hard time.
Today’s time in the Word was such life for me.
Ann Voskamp, Joy Dare
Three gifts red:
157. Jesus’ precious blood, the most amazing gift of all.
158. My Minnie Mouse coffee mug, okay, it’s not all red, but what a gift from my kids.
159. My red jammies..love me jammies.
Pray on. Pray on.