From Life to Life

“Thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere.  For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing,  to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life. Who is sufficient for these things?..  As commissioned by God, in the sight of God we speak in Christ.”

“Our sufficiency is from God,  who has made us sufficient to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.”

“God who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. We have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us… We who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.”

“The love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died;  and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised… Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” 2 Corinthians 2:14-16,17b; 3:5b-6; 4:6-7,11; 5:14-15,20-21

Paul spent his redeemed life for the gospel. His heart pulsed with the compulsion of Christ to make known His grace and truth. The time was always urgent, his message always clearly conveyed with open heart and mouth. He preached under pressure, extreme hardship, controversy, and mistreatment, caring only that the life of Christ be presented and received. Every now was a favorable opportunity to present his Savior to be seen and savored. (2 Corinthians 6:2-11)

Do we realize the quality of life we own in Christ? What are we doing with it? How are we, in every encounter, spreading the eternal life He’s given us to produce and enhance life in others? With whom do we share love and light that are other-worldly and life-giving? Where are we conveying forgiveness, compassion, mercy? Whom are we lifting up, edifying, consoling?

To reproduce life we must cultivate and nurture it in ourselves. Rich seasons of time in God’s word, specific application of His character and principles to everyday pondering and situations, and a willingness to share the fruits of life with others all contribute. The Spirit does the work, both hidden and seen, and guides us in our part. How passionate and available are we to manifest His life wherever He plants and leads us?

Lord, with every breath You give, may I speak and live Your life to others for their hope and Your glory.

Only One Worth Exalting

“He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and treated others with contempt: ‘Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed thus: “God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector.  I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I get.” But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, “God, be merciful to me, a sinner!”  I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted…’

“And a ruler asked him, ‘Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?’  And Jesus said to him, ‘Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone.  You know the commandments: “Do not commit adultery, Do not murder, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honor your father and mother.”’  And he said, ‘All these I have kept from my youth.’  When Jesus heard this, he said to him, ‘One thing you still lack. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.’ But when he heard these things, he became very sad, for he was extremely rich.  Jesus, seeing that he had become sad, said, ‘How difficult it is for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!'” Luke 18:9-14,18-24

The Pharisee, tax collector, and rich ruler betrayed whom they exalted by their words and posture toward the Lord. The Pharisee spoke for all to hear his litany of self-righteousness, making notable that he was justifiably on the throne of his life, merely informing God. The rich man inquired more earnestly, yet rued the thought of releasing his wealth. Did he treasure it too much? Only the tax collector was stricken with his sin, helplessly and trustingly casting himself and his idols on God’s mercy.

In order to exalt God, we must get out of the way. But the problem with us is us. We think too much of ourselves, our goodness, efforts, accomplishments, and stuff. We’ve made these gifts from God into ultimate things for which we take credit, and can’t seem to remove self from the pedestal of our life. We give lip-service to God, but we are almighty. As John Calvin described, “the human heart is a perpetual idol-making factory.” As long as we are pumped full of pomp, self importance, and materialistic endeavors, we will not give proper praise to the One worthy of this due. Bow before Jesus, and everything falls into a holy perspective.

Whom and what do we exalt? The answer is in what occupies our thoughts, dreams, and affections. Do we habitually make much of ourselves, incessantly talking as if my life is the only one of interest or importance? Where have I misplaced value on achievements, acquaintances, possessions, experiences? Anything or anyone (even family members) who preempts the high, holy, incomparable God in our hearts and souls must be displaced. (Isaiah 40:18-23,25-26; 44:6-8)

Almighty God, may I worship, adore, and exalt You alone, the only One worthy.

Despair that Leads to Life

“Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too. If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer.  Our hope for you is unshaken, for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort.

“For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers, of the affliction we experienced in Asia. For we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself.  Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead.  He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again.” 2 Corinthians 1:2-10

The secret to Paul’s ingrained attitude of hope was his knowledge of the Lord, his fixing each day- every thought and sense and choice- on the grace and peace that was his in Christ. Here he worshiped, from here he served, and to this blessed place he invited all to whom he wrote. No matter the difficult circumstances of suffering, affliction, or despair, in his Christ was sure comfort, hope, and life. His very words describing hardship are surrounded and swallowed in numerous nouns, adjectives, and adverbs emphasizing sharing, abundance, and deliverance in the Lord. Indeed, on him we have set our hope.

We, too, can see our afflictions that way when looking through the lens of Christ’s life. His reviling and rejection by men became the avenue of His grace to their salvation. He was stricken in order to heal, crucified to be resurrected and make possible eternal life. (Isaiah 53:3-12; 2 Corinthians 5:14-15; 1 Thessalonians 5:9-10)

For us, the zigzag of heartache and disappointment, wrenching fear and grief, failure and disappointment flow with the soothing living water of Jesus when we are filled with Him. When surrendered to His higher purposes, we also sparkle with His glory. He is blessed as we endure. He is exalted when we turn reliance on self toward Him alone. His strength is truly made perfect in our weakness as He proves His faithfulness over and over. (John 4:13-14; 2 Corinthians 12:9-10)

Are we heavy-laden with worry? Bless the Father of mercies! Suffering in emotional or physical pain? Rejoice in sharing with Christ! Choking in an ever-widening vortex of grief? Lean on the God of all comfort! Despairing of life itself? Lift eyes and hope to the Deliverer! Embracing the grace and peace He embodies brings palpable comfort and strength for each day and lights the way forward with resurrection hope.

Lord, smother every shadow in the hope, shine, and comfort of Your life light, to Your praise.

The Tumble and Treatment of Temptation

“Temptations to sin are sure to come, but woe to the one through whom they come!  It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were cast into the sea than that he should cause one of these little ones to sin. Pay attention to yourselves! If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him,  and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.” Luke 17:1-5

“You shall not hate your brother in your heart, but you shall reason frankly with your neighbor, lest you incur sin because of him.  You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord.” Leviticus 19:17-18

“’If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.16 But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses’… ‘Should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?’” Matthew 18:15-16,33

“Let no one say when he is tempted, ‘I am being tempted by God,’ for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one.  But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire.  Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death… Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.” James 1:13-15,12

Temptation is a nasty pest, one whose tangle and tumble we will not escape in this life. The Lord our High Priest has given numerous warnings with attending helps to handle and escape the sinister suck of sin and its stain on the church. He calls us to honest humility, personal vigilance, compassionate confrontation, and grace-filled redemption. (Hebrews 4:14-16; James 4:6-8; 2 Corinthians 5:17)

Since habitual personal sin desensitizes us to temptation’s deceitful allure (and exacerbates our sensitivity to others’ failings), it is vital we deal with it ruthlessly. Genuine repentance that submits to Christ’s mercy and love frees us to combat the enemy’s wiles and to come alongside others in the battle with His love. Our goal should always be to exalt God and His grace in personal and corporate holiness, borne of the gospel’s application to every ugly part. (Matthew 7:5)

In what situations are we most tempted, and what will we do to avoid them? How can we practically help a weak brother or sister not to fall, as well as those who have fallen by extending gospel forgiveness and a way forward? Where and with whom will we apply grace this day, in word and deed, to reinforce, redeem, restore, and reconcile? (Romans 15:1-2; Ephesians 4:32; 1 Thessalonians 5:14)

Omniscient, merciful Lord, give me a keen spirit to recognize and the courage to renounce every temptation. Make me an agent of repentance and restoration for the good of Your people and magnification of Your grace.

According to the Grace

“By the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.  For as in one body… the [many] members do not all have the same function,  so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.  Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith;  if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching;  the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.” Romans 12:3-8

“Neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives growth… Each will receive his wages according to his labor.  For we are God’s fellow workers.

“According to the grace of God given to me, like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and someone else is building upon it. Let each one take care how he builds… with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw—  each one’s work… will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done…

“If then you received it, why do you boast as if you did not receive it?.. It is required of stewards that they be found faithful.”

“Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit;  and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord;  and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone.  To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good…  All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills.” 1 Corinthians 3:7,8b-10,12-13; 4:7b,2; 12:4-7,11

God the Governor of His kingdom and Author and finisher of faith, doles out gifts according to His grace for the building and upbuilding of His church. He knows all that is needed, assigns our places in time and location, and calls us to faithful stewardship of the gifts He appoints. (Esther 4:14b; Acts 17:26; 1 Corinthians 12:12-20,27)

It’s exhausting to overwork in areas we’re not gifted or called to handle. Certainly life presents us with not-preferred but necessary responsibilities that require our attention. But many times, we take on work or service out of misdirected drive, impetuousness, or wrong motives where we have no business being involved. We steal the privilege and place of others who are so called. Also, it’s prideful not to admit our inabilities and be willing to relinquish control for the good of the whole.

How well do we know and understand our gifting? Have we gratefully accepted where the Lord has by grace both given and withheld skill and desire? Are there areas we’ve compared ourselves unto jealousy or resentment, and need to repent? How eagerly, zealously do we utilize the time and talent entrusted to us for God’s purposes and pleasure? (Romans 12:1-2; 1 Corinthians 8:6; 12)

Lord, guard me against boasting, misusing, and ignoring the gifts You’ve by grace granted. May I be a trustworthy, appropriate steward for the good of the Body and glory of Your name.

The Joy of Being Found

“The tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to hear him.  And the Pharisees and the scribes grumbled, saying, ‘This man receives sinners and eats with them.’

“So he told them this parable: ‘What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it?  And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing.  And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, “Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.” Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.

“Or what woman, having ten silver coins, if she loses one coin, does not light a lamp and sweep the house and seek diligently until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the coin that I had lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”

“Let us eat and celebrate. For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.” Luke 15:1-10,23b-24

The Pharisees pride-stained view of those outside their circle stood in sharp contrast to the Lord Jesus’s view of them. Lost because of their sin-status vs. loved in their sin-status. Marked forever by poor decisions and condemnation vs. identified forever as God’s image-bearers and children. Hated and rejected vs. loved and pursued. In the flesh man sees so differently from God, and therefore cannot accept and rejoice in His merciful ways. (Isaiah 55:8-9; Jeremiah 31:3; John 1:12; Romans 5:18-21; Ephesians 1:5; 2:1-5)

To understand that God loved us so much He went to the ends of the earth to find us and procure us as His own should undo us. To realize that Jesus, equal with God, humbled Himself to death on a cross out of love for our souls, should humble us to grateful praise. We were strangers, aliens, enemies, lost, dead… yet He pursued, found, and saved us. This cannot help but fill us with unstoppable joy! (Isaiah 43:1-7; John 3:16-17; Ephesians 2:12-13,19; Philippians 2:5-8)

Have we hidden ourselves in shame or guilt? What regret, fear, or pressure to perform keeps us from being truly found and loved by Jesus? When will I abandon myself to the Lover of my Soul, and rejoice in His rejoicing over me? (Zephaniah 3:14-20)

“What wondrous love is this, O my soul, O my soul!
What wondrous love is this, O my soul!
What wondrous love is this that caused the Lord of bliss
to bear the dreadful curse for my soul, for my soul,
to bear the dreadful curse for my soul!

To God and to the Lamb I will sing, I will sing;
to God and to the Lamb I will sing;
to God and to the Lamb, who is the great I AM,
while millions join the theme, I will sing, I will sing…
and through eternity I’ll sing on.” ~Alexander Means

Lord, may I glorify You by delighting in Your love and joy toward me.

By Strength of Hand

“I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless compelled by a mighty hand.”

“Moses said to the people, ‘Remember this day in which you came out from Egypt, out of the house of slavery, for by a strong hand the Lord brought you out… When the Lord brings you into the land of the Canaanites,.. and shall give it to you,  you shall set apart to the Lord all that first opens the womb. All the firstborn of your animals that are males shall be the Lord’s… Every firstborn of man among your sons you shall redeem.  And when in time to come your son asks you, “What does this mean?” you shall say, “By a strong hand the Lord brought us out of Egypt, from the house of slavery”… It shall be as a mark on your hand or frontlets between your eyes, for by a strong hand the Lord brought us out of Egypt…’

“And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead them along the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, that they might travel by day and by night. The pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night did not depart from before the people.”

“Your right hand, O Lord, glorious in power,
    your right hand, O Lord, shatters the enemy…

“Who is like you, O Lord, among the gods?
    Who is like you, majestic in holiness,
    awesome in glorious deeds, doing wonders?
You stretched out your right hand;
    the earth swallowed them.

“You have led in your steadfast love the people whom you have redeemed;
    you have guided them by your strength…
Because of the greatness of your arm…
You will bring them in and plant them on your own mountain,
    the place, O Lord, which you have made for your abode,
    the sanctuary, O Lord, which your hands have established.” Exodus 3:19; 13:3,11-14,16,21-22; 15:6,11-13,16a,17

What the Lord had promised with His mouth He performed with His strong hand. The plagues, the covering and hemming in behind and before of His people in protection from death, their deliverance from Egypt, the holding back of the sea and leading forward through the wilderness, all came to be by His mighty hand. There was nothing God spoke that He could not perform. (Psalm 139:5)

We can read His promises and think them feel-good mantras, but never tap into their power for us personally. We take the word but not God’s hand. To live by faith and in the power of the Spirit, we must both grasp and yield to His strength of hand.

In what situations do I desperately need the Lord’s hand to move, to remove? To cover, to compel? To steady, to stir? Have I wriggled out from under His protection, or wrestled against Him to determine my own way? What barriers do I need Him to displace, what attitudes to change? What compulsion or pride need I surrender to fully trust Him to work His salvation? (Exodus 14:13-15,21-22,29-31)

Lord, have full sway with Your good will and mighty hand to accomplish all You intend in and through me, for Your glorious ends.

Clear out Eye and Heart!

“Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?  How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take out the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the log that is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take out the speck that is in your brother’s eye.

“For no good tree bears bad fruit, nor again does a bad tree bear good fruit, for each tree is known by its own fruit. For figs are not gathered from thornbushes, nor are grapes picked from a bramble bush.  The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” Luke 6:41-45

Jesus was masterful at digging deep and getting to hidden causes and motivations. What He offered was no easy pat formula, no superficial, cheap discipleship, but gritty teaching that pierced soul and spirit. To live for Him took ruthless cleansing and rugged obedience.

To see well and speak well, we must have clean eye and heart. It is one thing to act out a cursory, smooth-on-the-surface performance, but all that lies within will bear out in our lives some way. We cannot perceive the world with clarity or own God’s eternal perspective until the planks of prejudice, self-interest, and pride are removed. We cannot have hearts abundant in love, light, and gratitude unless all that is worldly is removed. Christ’s is a high and holy calling.

Are we willing to let Him get to the nitty-gritty of our sin? Are we willing to deal with the ugly crud of a critical spirit, prejudice, and resentment so we’re free to bear rich spiritual fruit? How willing are we to confront every vestige of harsh-heartedness and arrogance, owning up to specific errors and failed responsibilities without making excuses or blaming others? Whom the Lord sets free is free indeed, and He always makes a way for us to heed His commands. (John 8:36; 1 Corinthians 10:13)

What are we doing to correct our vision? How are we filling our hearts with good treasure? A daily scriptural cleanse through the Spirit’s conviction, followed by confession and turning around is a start. Then thinking on what is above, filling our minds with whatever is true, noble, right, and pure, and practicing love and grace and generosity- all these grow the more we cultivate them. We must deliberately ask for the Spirit’s filling every day, and exercise faith by walking in Him. (Galatians 5:16; Ephesians 5:18; Philippians 4:8; Colossians 3:1-2)

Do we want to see clearly, and with God’s perfect eyesight? Do we desire to be fruitful from the inside out? Where will we begin?

Lord Jesus, fill me with your Spirit and all good treasure in my heart, that I might overflow with pure fruit that builds up others and brings You glory.

Awake Doing What?

“As he sat on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple, Peter and James and John and Andrew asked him privately, ‘Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign when all these things are about to be accomplished?’ And Jesus began to say to them, ‘See that no one leads you astray.  Many will come in my name, saying, “I am he!” and they will lead many astray.  And when you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed. This must take place, but the end is not yet.  For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places; there will be famines. These are but the beginning of the birth pains. But be on your guard…

“‘Concerning that day or that hour, no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.  Be on guard, keep awake. For you do not know when the time will come.  It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his servants in charge, each with his work, and commands the doorkeeper to stay awake.  Therefore stay awake—for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or when the rooster crows, or in the morning—  lest he come suddenly and find you asleep. What I say to you I say to all: Stay awake.’” Mark 13:3-9a,32-37

“Stay dressed for action and keep your lamps burning, and be like men who are waiting for their master to come home from the wedding feast, so that they may open the door to him at once when he comes and knocks.  Blessed are those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes…

“Who then is the faithful and wise manager, whom his master will set over his household, to give them their portion of food at the proper time?  Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes.” Luke 12:35-37,42-43

Jesus warned His children to watch and wait for His return. He admonished them to stay alert to discern deception and false reports, to recognize the signs of His coming, not just to sit propped up awake, slouched on cushions. They were servants left in charge, with duties to perform and people to serve. He had set them over specific tasks and individuals in need, to measure out spiritual and material food at the proper time. They were to be vigilant, active, aware, expectant. They were to have their lamps burning and hearts afire, attuned to His knock, ready to open the door and welcome Him at any moment into their present.

Have we ignored the snooze alarm to ‘awake,’ and grown dull in our awareness of God’s working in the nations? Have we become provincial and narrow in interest, care, and compassion, unwilling to get dirty with the hardship around us and abroad in the world? Are we lazy in service and ministry, saying it’s someone else’s turn? Have we let the Spirit’s fire fizzle by inattention and waning fervor? (Romans 12:11)

Would we ask the Lord to stoke our heart’s fire anew? Over whom and what has He given us charge, and how diligent are we about His assigned responsibilities? How will we get to work to be prepared to greet Him? (1 Corinthians 4:2; 1 Peter 4:10)

Lord, keep me ever alert to Your voice and ways, serving You with my whole heart until You come.

O Lord, My Lord

“O Lord, our Lord,
    how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory above the heavens…
When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
    the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,
what is man that you are mindful of him,
    and the son of man that you care for him?

Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings
    and crowned him with glory and honor.
You have given him dominion over the works of your hands;
    you have put all things under his feet.” Psalm 8:1,3-6

“I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine.” Song of Solomon 6:3

“I have loved you with an everlasting love;
    therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you.” Jeremiah 31:3

“The Lord your God is in your midst,
    a mighty one who will save;
he will rejoice over you with gladness;
    he will quiet you by his love;
he will exult over you with loud singing.” Zephaniah 3:17

Glorious in all the earth. Above the heavens. And He cares for us? Eternally loving. Continuing in faithfulness. And He’s in our midst, singing? This Lord is our Lord.

Begin the day in worship, and be amazed. Bow hushed before the Lord of lords. He’s King of kings, majestic in splendor, Ruler, Master, and Sustainer of all. His fingers made moon and stars, His breath quickened man to life. The heavens cannot contain Him, He rides above them, His glory out-distances them, His power upholds them. O Lord, our Lord. (Genesis 2:7; Deuteronomy 33:26; 2 Chronicles 6:18; Job 33:4; Psalm 68:4; Colossians 1:15-17)

This Lord is my Lord, and I am humbled, overwhelmed, hushed, undone. YHWH is my Sovereign, the unspeakable and indescribable who is also personal Provider, Guide, and Friend. What keeps me from full trust in You?

Is this Lord your Lord? If so, what difference are His authority and provision making in manner of thinking, dreaming, planning, decision-making? View toward resources, time, and relationships? If there is a lack of security, direction, hope, confidence, or verve, look to and rest in Him! His royal children by the blood of Christ, we are heirs of grace and eternal riches, siblings of Jesus, stewards of creation with dominion and purpose on this earth and in the Body. He is Lord! (Romans 8:17; Hebrews 2:11)

“Loved with everlasting love,
drawn by grace that love to know,
Spirit sent from Christ above,
thou dost witness it is so.
O this full and precious peace
from his presence all divine;
in a love that cannot cease,
I am his and he is mine.

Taste the goodness of the Lord:
welcomed home to his embrace,
all his love, as blood outpoured,
seals the pardon of his grace.
Can I doubt his love for me,
when I trace that love’s design?
By the cross of Calvary
I am his and he is mine.

His forever, only his–
who the Lord and me shall part?
Ah, with what a rest of bliss
Christ can fill the loving heart.
Heav’n and earth may fade and flee,
firstborn light in gloom decline,
but while God and I shall be,
I am his and he is mine.” ~Wade Robinson (1890)

Lord, may I rejoice and rest in these truths forever.