Good morning, friend,
Isn’t there something just so cool looking at a pile of rocks that claim to be Peter’s house? Well, the rocks don’t jump up, but the archaeologists have their reasons and arguments. People who have been to Israel say it changes their faith, to walk where Jesus walked, where the apostles walked, to see the history of our faith. I can well imagine. In a very small way, being also a lover of British literature and being able to visit England and Scotland, walking through Shakespeare’s hometown, seeing his grave, walking about the hometowns and such of many of my beloved authors is a memory I cherish. I loved looking at samples of their handwriting, places where they sat, forks they used, I mean crazy things like that. They are not just authors, then, they are real people, who lived and breathed.
And bringing it back to Jesus, that I believe, might be a beautiful thing for me about visiting Israel. Jesus, Emmanuel, God with us, visited us. He walked upon this earth, breathed in the air…I gaze at the picture above and wonder, could Jesus have visited this house? Could He had stepped through the front doors and taken off His sandals? Is this where He healed Peter’s mother-in-law?
14 And when Jesus went into Peter’s house, He saw his mother-in-law lying ill with a fever.
15 He touched her hand and the fever left her; and she got up and began waiting on Him.
16 When evening came, they brought to Him many who were under the power of demons, and He drove out the spirits with a word and restored to health all who were sick.
17 And thus He fulfilled what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah, He Himself took [in order to carry away] our weaknesses and infirmities and bore away our diseases. Matthew 8 AMP
Throughout the book of Matthew, one of Matthew’s purposes is to showcase of Jesus as the fulfillment of the prophecies of the Old Testament. This specific one to which Matthew speaks can be found in Isaiah 53:
4 Surely He has borne our griefs (sicknesses, weaknesses, and distresses) and carried our sorrows and pains [of punishment], yet we [ignorantly] considered Him stricken, smitten, and afflicted by God [as if with leprosy].
He saw Peter’s mother-in-law. I know, I know, it’s not really that profound, but look again. He saw her. He could have walked past. He could have not gone to Peter’s house. He could have done so many other things that night. He went there. He saw her. He touched her hand. Maybe you need to remember that today, that He sees you today. Remember His name, the God who sees you (Genesis 16). He bears your griefs, your weaknesses, your sorrows, your pains.
Peter knew this truth, but added this praise,
24 He personally bore our sins in His [own] body on the tree [as on an altar and offered Himself on it], that we might die (cease to exist) to sin and live to righteousness. By His wounds you have been healed. 25 For you were going astray like [so many] sheep, but now you have come back to the Shepherd and Guardian (the Bishop) of your souls. 1 Peter 2 AMP
Your griefs, weaknesses, sorrows, pains were born His body on the tree…this all has to die, friends, we need to live to righteousness. We are healed. We live in the light of eternity and grace and mercy.
So, when I see the rubble of Peter’s house, it makes me think. I want to walk where Jesus walked. I want to go to Israel, but now? Not in the budget. So, the next best thing? Walk in the shadow of His feet. Walk where He tells me to walk each moment of the day.
So I begin, with thanks,
I’m thankful for the joy of watching my kids play basketball and love it.
I’m thankful for the joy of friends who just give to us even when it’s inconvenient.
I’m thankful for time with the Lord this morning, for the rubble of Peter’s house, for Your fresh reminders. I love you, Lord.
Good morning, friend,
The beginning of the second semester of school officially begins tomorrow. GRIN. Today is get back to reality day. This day has many possibilities but I know it has to begin with Jesus. It has to start with the Lord, acknowledging His presence in this house, His Spirit, His guidance. Doesn’t every day hold that possibility? Can’t every day hold the chance to be a gift waiting for us to open?
I’m thankful today for my husband. He’s up and out to work. I’m thankful for his job and for our provisions.
I’m thankful for my little man that came home safely from his retreat, had a great time and is now snuggling with me.
I’m thankful for my family. I’m thankful for these past two weeks of rest and retreat for the craziness of life. It has been a good, deep breath.
Why not take a moment and write out or say out loud three things you are grateful for this day? Start this day with thanks.
[ A Call to Holy Living ] ·So [Therefore; For this reason] ·prepare your minds for service [prepare your minds for action; or, be alert; L gird the loins of your mind]and ·have self-control [be disciplined]. ·All your hope should be for [Focus all your hope on] the gift of grace that will be ·yours [brought/given to you] ·when Jesus Christ is shown to you [L at the revelation of Jesus Christ].1 Peter 1:13EXB
We have a call, friends, to live holy lives. To live for Him…and Peter tells us how…
1. Gird up the loins of your mind…to be prepared:
“…a metaphor derived from the practice of the Orientals, who in order to be unimpeded in their movements were accustomed, when starting a journey or engaging in any work, to bind their long flowing garments closely around their bodies and fastened them with a leather belt.” Greek Lexicon, blb.org
So rather than just flying into our day, not prepared, not thinking, Peter calls us to think differently, respond differently. Prepare.
2. Have self-control, be disciplined:
to be sober, to be calm and collected in spirit
to be temperate, dispassionate, circumspect Greek Lexicon, blb.org
3. All your hope should be for the gift of grace that will be ·yours:
in a religious sense, to wait for salvation with joy and full confidence
hopefully to trust in Greek Lexicon, blb.org
So this is my first week back, yet, I begin anew this day. I begin with thanksgiving. I begin with a plan for my day. I ask the Spirit of God for a calm, collect spirit, to have discipline this day. (No matter, how this day ends, Jesus is with me.) And finally, I look to the hope, a future hope that awaits all believers.
Pray on. Pray on.
Good morning, friends,
Thankful Tuesday. I’m so thankful for all of you who read these meanderings and walk with me whether with comments, or prayer, or both. May God richly bless you for your faithfulness to His Word and praise Him who…
20 Now to Him Who, by (in consequence of) the [action of His] power that is at work within us, is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly, far over and above all that we [dare] ask or think [infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, hopes, or dreams]—
21 To Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations forever and ever. Amen (so be it). Ephesians 3 AMP
Today, we head down to Rush Medical Center. Two of my kids have appointments with the neurologist. My girl will, hopefully, be allowed to wean off her seizure meds. My boy needs further evaluations and a new plan. I will have my ct scans after the appointment. I am hoping to talk with my neurologist by phone as well to come up with a plan for me.
A big day.
God gave me a wake-up call yesterday. Listening to Janet Parshall yesterday, my brothers and sisters in Christ are suffering persecution at the hand of governments across the world. Your brothers, your sisters in Christ are giving everything for the sake of the Gospel. So when I read the passages and study these Greek words and such, I am reminded, my body, my health, yes that is difficult, but it is nothing compared to Farshid Fathi. Farshid has been held by the Iranian government for 695 days..
Farshid, a Christian convert from Islam, was charged with “acting against national security through membership of a Christian organization, collection of funds, propaganda against the Islamic Regime by helping spread Christianity in the country,” and sentenced to six years of imprisonment on March 5, 2012. Though the charge is for his Christian work, authorities tried to cast his activities as political offenses. ( persecution.com)
Or Alireza Seyyedian is a 37-year-old former Muslim who has been a Christian since 2006. Last year, security forces confiscated his computer during a raid on his apartment. Authorities then discovered video of Alireza’s baptism in Turkey on the computer. In December 2011 he was sentenced to six years in prison, for crimes against national security and propaganda against the regime. (persecution.com)
So we see our circumstances, our distresses and we have tunnel vision. We forget about the world around us and focus our attention completely on our problems.
Remembering the persecuted church, remembering our family, especially during this time to be thankful. Become an advocate for the persecuted church! Write letters to the prisoners. Petition officials. Involve your children. Involve your church. Our worldwide family needs your prayers, needs your words, needs your action.
6 [You should] be exceedingly glad on this account, though now for a little while you may be distressed by trials and suffer temptations,
7 So that [the genuineness] of your faith may be tested, [your faith] which is infinitely more precious than the perishable gold which is tested and purified by fire. [This proving of your faith is intended] to redound to [your] praise and glory and honor when Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One) is revealed. 1 Peter 1 AMP
So let’s look up some of these words in the Greek and dig.
Trials (peirasmos)-adversity, affliction, trouble: sent by God and serving to test or prove one’s character, faith, holiness
The root word of peirasmos is peirazō which means “to try, make trial of, test: for the purpose of ascertaining his quality, or what he thinks, or how he will behave himself.”
We endure our trials, our temptations and not only does this test prove our character to God, who btw, already knows. Friends, it proves to us where we are weak, where we need to submit, where we need to humble ourselves. In the car ride on Friday, when the world felt like it was crashing around me, I endured a trial. Not well at first, but Joshua stood in the gap and prayed me through. His strength was a gift from God and his encouragement. So rather than spinning that to seem like God is out to tag us, look at it from a different perspective.
Proof-“the proof (of your faith),” AV, “the trial;” where the meaning probably is “that which is approved [i.e., as genuine] in your faith;” The root here is dokimē: proving, trial, approved, tried character,a proof, a specimen of tried worth.
Our brothers and sisters around the world are being tested, tried, persecuted and their prayer requests? That they may stay strong and hold faithfully to the Word of God.
In our struggles, we have a choice. Will we hold faithful? Will we stand strong?
Pray on. Pray on.
Good morning, beloved,
It’s been awhile! My apologies, my body has fought me this week. I can’t help but think about all the people in my life who live with chronic pain and carry on. Walk on. If that is you, know that our God walks with you. He knows you and He sees you. You are never alone. I have had a week of jaw pain. TMJ or Temporomandibular Joint. Well, three weeks of headaches, clicking jaw and such, you never know how much you use the body part in crisis until you feel the pain every time you move. Well, the hero act lasted quite awhile until finally the straw that broke the camel’s back occurred.
So my mother came blazing in to the rescue, thank YOU God, and has stayed with us this week. I got so behind on everything. And she has worked hard to bring our family back into order. I’ve missed writing and studying the Word with you.
The physical therapist educated me on my jaw, why this happens, what is happening and how to help. This visit with him was a cup of cold water. I have exercises I am doing, wearing a splint (not sounding like a complete dork), eating soft foods..and as I got upset, stressed and frustrated yesterday (not my best day), I began noticing how I clench and grind my jaw, but with wearing a splint, I’m able to feel the pain and stop. Not just so I don’t clench, but it draws me up and reminds me to calm, say verses I know, turn on the music, and breath. It’s a little like fasting..a prompt to pray, a prompt!
Let’s look at the hope we have.
6 though now for a little while you may be distressed by trials and suffer temptations,
7 So that [the genuineness] of your faith may be tested, [your faith] which is infinitely more precious than the perishable gold which is tested and purified by fire. [This proving of your faith is intended] to redound to [your] praise and glory and honor when Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One) is revealed.
8 Without having seen Him, you love Him; though you do not [even] now see Him, you believe in Him and exult and thrill with inexpressible and glorious (triumphant, heavenly) joy.
Let’s look through the Bible together for verses that support and encourage this set.
Isaiah 12 : 2 Behold, God, my salvation! I will trust and not be afraid, for the Lord God is my strength and song; yes, He has become my salvation.
We are commended to remember who God is, He is our salvation, our deliverance, our strength and our song. So we need to offer our hearts, trusting in Him and not fear. So today, look through His lens at your life. Remembering..
John 16: (Jesus talking!) 22 So for the present you are also in sorrow (in distress and depressed); but I will see you again and [then] your hearts will rejoice, and no one can take from you your joy (gladness, delight).
Oh, friends, our lives can bring such sorrow. Our neighbor had the police out yesterday, forcibly removing an abusive presence in her house. Her life is in crisis. Yet to remember, I will see Jesus. My heart will rejoice and there is not one person who can take my joy away. Do we remember to have joy? It’s hard when pain is staring us in the face yet God calls us to trust and love Him. Even if you are clinging to Him with everything you have.
Jesus is our reconciliation. We can rejoice, glory in His love..why? Through our Jesus.
2 Corinthians 12: 9 But He said to me, My grace (My favor and loving-kindness and mercy) is enough for you [sufficient against any danger and enables you to bear the trouble manfully]; for My strength and power are made perfect (fulfilled and completed) and show themselves most effective in [your] weakness. Therefore, I will all the more gladly glory in my weaknesses and infirmities, that the strength and power of Christ (the Messiah) may rest (yes, maypitch a tent over and dwell) upon me!
10 So for the sake of Christ, I am well pleased and take pleasure in infirmities, insults, hardships, persecutions, perplexities and distresses; for when I am weak [in human strength], then am I [truly] strong (able, powerful in divine strength).
I am convinced. Loving Him, trusting Him, hoping in Him in our various trials, they will bring glory to God! Glory! Hold tight to His hand today. I’m going to exit.
Pray on. Pray on. Love you all.
- 15 Days in the Word with John Piper – WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO SERVE GOD (christlikeministriesnwa.wordpress.com)
- Heavenly Memo: “Rejoice through all of your trials.” (revessie.com)
- Fight the good fight of faith (bummyla.wordpress.com)
- Protected…Through Faith for Salvation (simpleswitch.wordpress.com)
Good morning, good morning!
Summer is over. Summer is over? Wah! Yet a schedule, we long for a schedule. I fight against it but I know it is best. Everyone getting in the rhythm. My cry is for my words to be full of grace, mercy and love. Reality speaks already to frustration of children that want their own way. Just as God knows what is best for me and doesn’t always explain every detail, I learn from watching my kids they crave every detail as much as I do. Why? When? How? All I want from my kids is a yes Mom and I wonder truthfully if God doesn’t just wish the same from me.
Starburst, our dog, does a lot better with this concept than the rest of us. We tell her one word commands and she does them. Ok, well, not perfectly but most of the time it is an instant response. The Lord says:
By Silvanus, a true (loyal, consistent, incorruptible) brother, as I consider him, I have written briefly to you, to counsel and urge and stimulate [you] and to declare [to you] that this is the true [account of the] grace (the undeserved favor) of God. Be steadfast andpersevere in it. 1 Peter 5:12
a) that which affords joy, pleasure, delight, sweetness, charm, loveliness: grace of speech
2) good will, loving-kindness, favour
a) of the merciful kindness by which God, exerting his holy influence upon souls, turns them to Christ, keeps, strengthens, increases them in Christian faith, knowledge, affection, and kindles them to the exercise of the Christian virtues
3) what is due to grace
a) the spiritual condition of one governed by the power of divine grace
b) the token or proof of grace, benefit
1) a gift of grace
2) benefit, bounty
4)thanks, (for benefits, services, favours), recompense, reward
Now, found in the text of 1 Peter, what do I learn?
1 Peter 1:2 May grace (spiritual blessing) and peace be given you in increasing abundance [that spiritual peace to be realized in and through Christ, freedom from fears, agitating passions, and moral conflicts].
And so on…
According to Peter:
- Grace is the spiritual blessing in Christ
- By His revelation: grace!
- it is the favor of God in our handling of suffering, doing things right no matter the cost (1 Peter 2:19, 20)
- showing honor from husband to wife…results in the grace/honor of God (1 Peter 3:7)
- showing as good stewards the manifold grace of God (1 peter 4:10)
- our humble attitude (not proud) God gives grace! (1 Peter 5:5)
- God of all grace…(1 Peter 5:10, 12)
Let’s live in His grace. Let’s give one another…grace. Unmerited favor. Pray on, beloved, pray on!
Good morning, beloved,
So good to be here this morning! The sun is streaming through the trees, the trains are running smoothly (without the banging on horn), our kids are up, Noah is praising the Lord with loud music…giving thanks. Giving praise to God today. A theme through this whole week has been forgiveness and salvation. Every time I turn on Moody or turn on a podcast, it has been all about these two very, very important topics.
On Wednesday, as we drove we listened to Erwin Lutzer. The car was mesmerized. And I thought of people in my life who needed to hear the truth of this message. How can I be sure of my salvation? How can I know I am going to heaven? To tempt you even further to listen to this message, Mr. Lutzer actually says, “that rocks!” in a sentence. The kids had a good laugh. Find out how! Please listen, even if you are sure, you can be an encouragement to others. You can give hope and life to someone who desperately needs life everlasting.
1 Peter flows with truth and wisdom for our daily life. As I mark out the key words in the text I am finding so much to live by. This first week of study, as I mentioned previously, is reading 1 Peter over and over.
To start off with, the verses of the day fit perfectly:
Amplified Bible (AMP)
16 So that [we may even] preach the Gospel in lands [lying] beyond you, without making a boast of work already done in another [man’s] sphere of activity [before we came on the scene].
17 However, let him who boasts and glories boast and glory in the Lord.
18 For [it is] not [the man] who praises and commends himself who is approved and accepted, but [it is the person] whom the Lord accredits and commends.
Our approach to the Lord always should be humble and without pride. We are His workmanship created in Christ Jesus to do good works..we are created. We are formed by a Master Hand. Pottery cannot make itself beautiful, it cannot shine, it must be crafted by a Master Potter. God be praised in all things. I have chips and cracks yet the Lord and I can look at each step in my life and know it is to His glory and every step I cry out and ask that I can look more like Jesus.
Amplified Bible (AMP)
3 Praised (honored, blessed) be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah)! By His boundless mercy we have been born again to an ever-living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
4 [Born anew] into an inheritance which is beyond the reach of change and decay [imperishable], unsullied and unfading, reserved in heaven for you,
5 Who are being guarded (garrisoned) by God’s power through [your] faith [till you fully inherit that final] salvation that is ready to be revealed [for you] in the last time.
6 [You should] be exceedingly glad on this account, though now for a little while you may be distressed by trials and suffer temptations..
Don’t keep your eyes on your circumstances. We can’t do this. Instead, His boundless mercy has been extended to us. If you have asked the Lord to be Lord in your life, then you have been born again to an ever-living hope! Think about that. Ever-living, always alive a hope! Jesus did it. If your past haunts you, and you have asked for His forgiveness, then do not allow Satan to taunt you with God could never forgive. He could never love a sinner like you. I think of that saying..when Satan reminds you of your past, remind him of his future. Call on Jesus! Call Him, His blood has garrisoned you and me. God’s power surrounds you. Whether you ‘feel’ it or not..trials and temptations haunt your life…claim His blood.
Well, please, please listen to this message. Pray on. Pray on.
Good morning beloved!
A new day, a new week, a new chance to glorify God in all we do…My Mom just called and shared that she slept last night and is breathing again. So thank you so much for praying for her.
As we enter our final week of summer, I want to smash in all I can to say goodbye to a very lovely season. So many blessings have come our way! Our garden we started is giving us many good foods. Our children are thriving at our church. We are getting established in the church and people are praying for us. We have community. Ella is walking beautifully without any brace or walker. She is running.
Noah is still struggling with his leg and so we do need to carry on with the leg brace/boot. He slipped a couple of times this weekend and twisted it. Yet, he is so excited because today his youth group pastor and wife are taking him out to lunch.
I was hoping for a park day but rain is hedging those plans. We’ll have to see. I give thanks. I give honor to the One who brought us to this place.
Of course, we know that Peter, the apostle wrote this letter to: “To those who reside as aliens, scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, andBithynia, who are chosen 2 according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to obey Jesus Christ and be sprinkled with His blood: May grace and peace be yours in the fullest measure.” 1 Peter 1:1-2
This letter is an exhortation to faith in the Beloved Trinity.
This book has so much to say to us. So much encouragement for the faithful, for those who need a lifting of their heads…God be praised for the gift of this letter.
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercyhas caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, 5 who are protected by the power of God through faith fora salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, 7 so that theproof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 8 and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,9 obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls. 1 Peter 1
I could keeping going on…hmmm..
“9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; 10 for you once were not a people, but now you are the people of God; you hadnot received mercy, but now you have received mercy.” 1 Peter 2
“23 and while being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously; 24 and He Himselfbore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed. 25 For you were continually straying like sheep, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls.” 1 Peter 2
“12 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; 13 but to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing, so that also at the revelation of His glory you may rejoice with exultation. ” 1 Peter 4
Oh, friends, it’s going to be a rich study. I could keep going on! Join me, won’t you? And if you live in the Lake County area and don’t have a home church, please join us at Gages Lake Bible Church, my pastor is going through this book on Sunday mornings at 10:45. (Ok, shameless plug over..LOL)
Now, if there is any way that I can pray for you, won’t you share with me? Share the sufferings and be encouraged that you are never, ever alone. Ever. How ever long God wills for the blog to continue may these writings be to the glory of Him who made me. I pray for you as you read this. Know this. Know you are loved.
Pray on, beloved in Christ. Pray on!