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Where are You?

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I am an avid Facebooker.  Yup, I enjoy the chit-chat, keeping up with what folks are doing, ‘try’ to ignore the political jabs and high step over the “You HAVE to forward and post this to claim your blessing for the day.”  Nope, not going to happen.  However, there is good Bible study to be had at times.  This week, I have been participating in a conversation about the book of Genesis.  LOVE IT!  Social Media at its best.  Please feel free to ‘ease drop’.  Names were removed for privacy.
The statement was presented: “This week we will be discussing the entrance of sin into the world and how it affected mankind then and now.”

DeDe replied:  “Amazing how God knew and had a plan, how He asked Adam, “Where are you?” The question for Adam. He still knows and His plan is still implemented, He still asks us, so we too would ‘process”.

Person Replied: “Why did God ask Adam where he was? Did God lose Adam?”

DeDe replied:  “Gen 3 says “They hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden.” Interesting that they hid where God put them. (How often do we too ‘hide among.’) No, God did not lose them, He knew. He knew also how they were aware they were naked, the questions were not to inform God, but to have them consider not their ‘position’ (He knew where they were in the garden) He asked to help them process their ‘condition.'”

Person Replied: “Your statement of, “to process their condition” seems to imply they might be ill or have some type of disease. Would it not be better to state that God wanted them to be accountable for their actions?”

DeDe replied:  Actually, yes, they were not only ‘ill’ but now dead. ‘Spiritually.’ Looking at Genesis 2:16-17 “And the LORD God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.” In the original language, the ‘surely die’, literally is the same word, (mut) ‘die die’ Dying spiritually, you shall die physically (in essence). God created man(kind) for relationship, making man in His own image, breathing His own breath into mans lungs, this relationship was intended to be eternal. Disobedience caused instant spiritual death. (Gotta know the bad news to appreciate the ‘Good News’) Adam/Eve (sin) infected all humanity. (Thanks guys!!) One Receptionist (2)Man (Jesus) was the cure for humanity. Col. 2:13 “When you were dead in your sins… God made you alive with Christ, He forgave us all our sins…” Spiritual genetic sin, did NOT affect Jesus, He was of a virgin birth, He was of the Holy Spirit, rather than humanity, Divine substitution to ATONE humanity. God had a plan. So they were not only ‘ill’, but dead, changing the condition (if you will) of the relationship. ‘Fellowship’ had been broken. Jesus restores that fellowship, taking it back to the original design of the Creator. Atonement.  In short, a repair done for the sake of a damaged relationship. Being reconciled to God through Jesus’s sacrificial death.

Person replied:  Because of that broken relationship, humanity has set themselves up for constant failure, always searching for something else to fill the void. However, Christ left ALL the opportunity to change course; repent, and call for HIS saving Grace.

DeDe replied: ‘Amen.’  (ending conversation, ‘for now’)

Do WE need to invite such a conversation into our own life?  Would God ask us, “Where are you?”  Have we found ourselves ‘hiding among’ the stuff?  Do we too need to consider our condition of the relationship.  Does our ‘fellowship’ need some addressing. As the person said above, “Christ left ALL the opportunity to change course.”  (See 1 Jn 1:9)

In Him, DeDe (“Let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love & good deeds.” – Heb. 10:24)

Big Game Day: YOU Made the List

Remember back and for some of us WAAAAY back, when we were in the 4th or 5th grade, out on the play ground we would divide up in teams for a ball game? THAT had to be some of the most frustrating moments of childhood. Nervous thoughts of “Will I be picked?” Or remember when the list was posted for those making the team following try outs? We stood a slight distance away, just close enough to see if our name was there, but not too close to be faced with complete rejection, by our names absence.YOU Made the list

Making the list. Go ahead admit it, we all want to be wanted, picked and PALEEZE deem me VALUABLE! We all have areas of our life that we fall short, lack skill or just can’t seem to get it right. In these, we begin to see ourselves as less valuable than others. Perhaps even become resentful of those who DO seem to have it all together, and those with gifts dripping off their finger tips, well… let’s just say LOVE usually isn’t the most godly response. Does envy, jealously even hatred sound familiar?

Ever notice that we may take these perspectives or may I say insecurities into our relationship with God? I know I do! Please nod your head, so I don’t feel so vulnerable here folks! Yes, yes we do.

Often, we find our head bowed not necessarily in reverence, but out of frustration, the words that escape are painful “Will You, can You … use … ME!” Then we continue listing all our shortcomings, these becoming our EXCUSES, before we know it, WE are telling God that He should NOT want us.

In short Beloved, have we ever considered the ‘list’ that God compiled. The list of Biblical proportion. These folks did stupid things, made BIG mistakes, were not of the flashy type, some were too small, too old, to ugly, too worrisome.

Eve listened to the Devil * Rahab was a prostitute *Adam blame shifted *Jeremiah and Timothy were too young *Noah was a drunk *David had an affair and was a murderer *Abraham was too old *Elijah was suicidal *Isaac was a daydreamer *Isaiah preached naked *Jacob was a liar *Jonah ran from God *Leah was ugly *Naomi was a widow *Joseph was abused *Job went bankrupt *Moses stuttered *John the Baptist ate bugs *Aaron fashioned the golden calf, then lied about it *Peter denied Christ *Gideon was afraid *The Disciples fell asleep while praying *Sampson had long hair and was a womanizer *Martha worried about everything *The Samaritan woman was divorced, more than once *Zaccheus was too small *Paul was too religious AND Lazarus was dead! DEAD I tell you.

Here it comes …. HOWEVER. God used ALL these people! They were part of His plan. They ALL had weaknesses of some sort. Do YOU find yourself among this list (hopefully NOT preaching naked!) Do YOU worry, then beat yourself up for lack of faith? Do YOU fall asleep when you pray, then believe the lie you don’t love God enough?

Have YOU been divorced, afraid, abused, widowed, bankrupted, drunk? God is God. HE compiles the List! YOU made the list, the list of redeemed mankind. God moved in and through these peoples lives. Do we think of Moses as a stutter? Do we think of Gideon afraid? What first comes to mind when we think of Peter?  A great leader of the church, NOT Peter the denier!  God is the Redeemer, of our soul, life  and YES mistakes, failures and shortcomings.

I so admire King David’s longing, through all the junk of his life, adultery, murder, poor parenting skills, he says “Let the morning bring me word of Your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in You ….” he continues with “show me … rescue me… teach me … lead me” (Ps. 143) May we all look clrscrollpenforward to the dawn of each new day, trusting in God, allowing Him to show us, rescue us, teach us, lead us.

Today as we find that comfy spot on the couch and watch the BIG GAME and perhaps our minds gently slide in the direction of envy of their talent and skill, please remember YOU my friends are sons & daughters of the Most High God! YOU are valuable! YOU are loved! YOU made the List!  HIS list!  Regardless.  Big plans for YOU!

In Him, DeDe (“Let us consider how we may spur one another one toward love & good deeds” ~ Heb. 10:24)

Sense of VALUE

You have value

Every night as my husband and I crawl into bed, he reaches for our devotional.  Before we close our eyes he is faithful to read, I so love that quality about him. The pages speak directly to marriage and relationship, pulling principles from scripture. Recently one of the authors shared briefly it is her daily goal to state or show appreciation to her husband.  This sparked a good conversation between Mark and I.

I honestly feel that appreciation, to TRULY appreciate has become lost or ‘blurred’ in the least. Our culture screams, writes books and holds seminars with lists of ways to better increase … SELF.  I was challenged to take a deeper looked at this.  Normally when I write or teach, I ‘try’ to offer the shortest and simplest explanation.  As if a table stands behind me covered with all my findings beneath it and only take a few items out to share. However, today I feel the need to pull the sheet back a bit further exposing even more detail.   Please don’t allow your eyes to gloss over, stick with me we will end with a picture of understanding that has the opportunity to change how we communicate.  It has for me.

 

 We start with defining.  Appreciate: Comes from the Latin, meaning   ‘ap’ (towards) ‘pretiare’ (price) ‘to set at a price.’  Combining current definitions, it is the assessment of the true worth or value of a person or thing.  It is recognition offering the proper value.  From here I went to the Bible. I found it used only once in the NT, although its theme is strong. The New American Standard translates  ‘eido’ (know) as appreciate in Paul’s encouragement in  1 Th 5:12   “But we request of you, brethren, that you appreciate (eido) those who diligently labor among you and have charge over you in the Lord and give you instruction.”   This ‘eido’ means to perceive, contemplate with Thessaloniansamazement.  To turn the eyes and the mind giving attention, the attention strong as to cherish.  Also, having an inward conscious knowledge. It strongly conveys, “I know what I know” not in an arrogant way, but a solid confidence.   On a geeky note, ‘eido’ differs from ‘ginosko’ (another Greek word) ginosko, is progressive in knowledge, while ‘eido’ suggests fullness of knowledge, as we would say today, “This is my final answer.”  Paul strongly states in 2 Tim. 1:12 ” … I am not ashamed, because I know (eido – “I know what I know and I cherish it”) the One I have believed in and am persuaded that He is able to guard what has been entrusted to me until that day.” (emphasis mine) INTERESTING, tucked way back in the definition is ‘to bring or set together, to make known.’

The picture it paints for me: As if we were at an auction.  The item is in front of everyone, small bids are made, yet YOU know the true worth of the item. You raise your hand, increasing the bid to a higher value.  You ‘know that you know’ it is worth so much more.  With your bid, you have recognized the proper value.  As defined above, you have now brought and set together the true value alongside the item.  Appreciate.

 

It is the same in relationships, as we offer ‘appreciation’ to others, we raise value with our words, actions and attitudes. We recognize qualities, and make them known.  James Dobson says the two greatest needs of a child is “love and limits.”  As we mature those needs expand.  Psychologist William James said, “The deepest principle of human nature is the craving to be appreciated.”  Think if you will of a teenager, longing for significance, whom rarely makes eye contact. What would a simple statement or act of acknowledgement do for them? “I really appreciate that you raked the leaves for me, you did it quickly and thoroughly, a great quality. Thank you.” Raise their sense sorrow2of value?  Yes!  For some, the new raised sense of value exchanges the old ‘price tag’ (if you will) for a new one.  The man sitting on the corner, the gas attendant, lady cashier at Safeway, our childs track coach, the Sunday school teacher, our children, our beloved spouses, you and me… we ALL need a good sense of value.

 

 I found also that when operating with a heart of appreciation in the purest sense differs largely from flattery.  ‘Excessive gushes of insincere praise given to further ones own interests.’ The underlining motive of flattery is the selfish goal to increase or maintain MY value with no intention to benefit the hearer. It is haphazardly throwing kind words in someones direction with little effort that it actually LANDS on them. (ouch!) It can be used as a manipulative tool and is not a quality our God smiles upon.  “For if I tried flattery, my Creator would soon destroy me.”  Elihu in frustration says this to Job in chapter 32 verse 22  David says, “My enemies cannot speak a truthful word. Their deepest desire is to destroy others. Their talk is foul, like the stench from an open grave. Their tongues are filled with flattery.” Ps. 5:9  Paul too speaks to this, “They (who cause divisions and upset people’s faith) have no intention of living for our Master Christ. They’re only in this for what they can get out of it, and aren’t above using pious sweet talk (flattery) to dupe unsuspecting innocents.” (MSG – emphasis mine)  So flattery is an attempt to benefit oneself and not the person you are speaking to. Appreciation is not looking for anything in return it is for the sole benefit of the listener. One is selfish, the latter is self-less.

 

We are now careful to look at what is OPPOSITE:  ‘Depreciate’, it too is a verb. To lose value, overlook, discard, to undervalue. The act of lowering value.  Obviously it is intentional. When we ‘overlook’ or discard another’s qualities, we do indeed ‘depreciate’ them.  Our kind words of appreciation, in essence ‘align.’ We help bring together their value alongside them, NOT depleting the amount. (Nod your head if that makes sense)

 

Appreciation and encouragement go hand in hand.  The first is acknowledging what is auction-bidalready there, appreciation. Encouragement is helping to strengthen it or bring new insight to cause the quality to be birthed and grow.  Both are a must.  “We live by encouragement and die without it.  Slowly, sadly and angrily.” – Chuck Swindoll.

 

Example of this.  Mark and I whole-heartedly appreciate Bruce and Mary, leaders of our Blueprints for Marrieds group from church.  We so value them. We KNOW what it takes to facilitate an ever growing group, the time, engergy and love.  They are amazing examples of committement, true love for each other, their God and God’s people. We have voiced it, and in doing so, we have come alongside them with our own giftings. Affirming and confirming, appreciating and encouraging. We have raised our hands.

 

The wisest man ever to live Solomon, penned, “The tongue has the power of life and death…”  Pro 18:21  May we take pause and consider how we may offer life to another.  Embrace them with selfless kindness, knowing the worth of them and their qualities, not holding the knowledge to ourselves, raising our hand and SHARE it!  Appreciate.

 

Increase someones value today.

 

In Him DeDe (“Let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love & good deeds.” – Heb. 10:24)

Give Him Just ONE

bible time

 

Women.  We are used to multi-tasking.  Having our minds and lives firing in 5 or more different directions. At times we DO find ourselves on overload.  When we do, what do we tend to do?  And do well? Criticize ourselves.  I am reminded of a time when I sat amongst a small group of gals in a bible study setting. In that discussion time we were sharing our goals for the study. There was a mother of ‘4’ (FOUR!) small, YOUNG, needing her attention, children. I can sense you close your eyes and breathe a prayer over this gal. I know, I did.

In her frustration and complete weariness, she shared in depth about not having ‘enough’ time for devotions and her bible study. She felt defeated and was basically giving up, to where she hadn’t opened her Bible in some time.  Those in the group kept trying to help with creative ways to carve out enough time. “Go to bed earlier, get up earlier, use paper plates, when they sleep ….” This young mom was nearly in tears. I just sat and listened.  These are all good discplined goals, yet they were more worried about the ‘quantity’ of time, rather then the ‘quality.’

You know me, I finally leaned forward and looked the gal in the eyes, lovingly and tenderly asking, “Could you look at maybe just ONE verse each day or for the whole week?” She stopped talking. So did the others.  Silence. Well except what I imagined spilled milkgoing through their heads.  “This gal is NUTS!”  I’m sure they thought. “One stinkin verse??? THAT is NOT enough! I will get behind! I have to get through that one year bible reading, gotta get my homework done! Gotta write in my journal.” This attitude belongs to many of us. How many of us too, feel defeated and well basically allow our God time to slip, slip away because we cant keep up with the ‘quota.’ Sigh! Head hung, shoulders slumped.

I then shared that it’s not the quantity of time with God and His word that is important, it is the quality. If you have just enough time to read one verse, then the baby cries, or the dog barks or milk is split etc etc etc (so goes life) Then take that ONE verse, WHILE you are cleaning up the milk – holding the crying baby, ask the Holy Spirit to speak to YOU about that verse. You, God, His word … quality time. Listen – listen for HIS application.  If need be at the beginning of the week, jot down that verse on a 3×5 card, tape it to the mirror in the bathroom.  Even though you may have a parade of offspring following you in there, READ it aloud.  Again and again.

Don’t get me wrong I am ALL OVER Bible study, to seek out the meaning, the context, the reason WHY Moses/Paul wrote what they wrote. What the original language is saying, asking the who – what – where – why – and how questions (ok, the Bible teacher in me HAD to insert this). But there are seasons, seasons when time captures us. Seasons when even with discipline … our clock is full.

For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (Heb. 4:12) Allow the ‘alive word’ to minister to YOU! One Memorize-a-Bible-Verse-verse?  Enough? Yes, yes it is with the Holy Spirit whispering in your ear.

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man/woman of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” – 2 Tim. 3:16-17 (emphasis mine) Allow God to use His word to teach you, guide you and equip you for the day.  The Psalmist wrote “Oh how I love Your law, I meditate on it all day long” (Ps. 119:97) Meditate means to reflect, pray, cause your thoughts to return again and again.  To chew on it and keep on chewing.  May God massage it into our heart and mind.

During that moment of silence with the gals, I shared I once spent days just on Thomas’s ” … my Lord and my God” (Jn. 20:28) I didn’t research – I didn’t cross reference, just “My Lord and my God.”  Knowing the context, I thought about it, I said it,  I pictured it and I prayed it. It was amazing. The gals just sat there and starred at me. I was shocked that they allowed me to sit at their table the following week.

God knows us, knows our heart.  For those of us whose season doesn’t allow for hours or minutes of ‘head in the book’ sessions, don’t stress!  Don’t feel condemned, if we can give Him just ONE verse, HIS word, He can and will minister to us. It can be amazing.

In Him, DeDe (“Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.” – Heb. 10:24)

Walking the Deck

Walking the Deck

I sat quietly reading in my comfy chair when my son called out rather energetically. “Mom hurry I NEED you!” As I came into the living room, he hands me a controller to Playstation, like I know what to do with it! Excited, he begins to yell out commands, which I assume I am supposed to be following. I took a seat and thus begins the hysterical game playing. I was laughing so hard, I began to wheeze, tears were filling my eyes, the controller nearly falling out of my hands as I bent over.

We were playing Star Wars, he kept saying “Follow me!” I was TRYING! I didn’t know which buttons to push, so I pushed them ALL. Somehow I wasPS Controller supposed to get my man up on that scooter thingy. Much to MY own amusement, I kept crashing into trees. My job, as I found out later, was to be a distraction so his guy could finish his mission. Before I knew it, Matthew says, “Ok, you can stop now” – had I even begun? The theme to Star Wars came on and I knew he was victorious.

Amazing what part we play in others lives isn’t it? That reminds of those massive ships in the military. One in particular is an aircraft carrier. There is a department that is lovingly called the ‘Yellow Jackets’ (Flight Deck Officers). These are men and women who, yes, wear yellow jackets and spend much of their time directing pilots as they prepare to take off and in their landings. One of their duties is known as ‘walking the deck’. As a pilot is either preparing for take off or landing, they and many other personnel, line up across the deck and slowly – meticulously look for any debris. The debris if left on the flight deck could be very hazardous to the plane, pilot, the mission.

Walking the Deck2I find it very interesting as I liken it to our own relationships found in the Kingdom of God. We have many roles we play in others lives: Cheerleader, counselor, confidante, mentor, teacher and friend. But we are also to ‘walk the deck’ if you will and do our part helping to remove any debris or obstacles along the way. Do lovingly what it takes to help another to be successful. We are called to encourage. Much of the time our encouraging a brother or sister takes … ‘action’.

Paul shares in, 1 Thessalonians 5:11 “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up.” ‘Encourage’ meaning ‘come along side, to aid with help.’ Here’s a dandy – ‘to beseech with a stronger force’.  NOT to be confused with the theatrical big screen over used, ‘Force’ mind you.  We are to admonish, exhort to better things, cheer each other on in God! He then says, ‘build each other up’, in the King Jimmy it is ‘edify’. Paul is talking in architectural terms. We are constructing. NOT demolishing! Do our words, our actions help build others up, does it motivate them to better things?  Or do we blow them off the deck with our harmful words, our motive selfish, holding back so we shine brighter. (OUCH!) When we leave their presence, with the help of the Holy Spirit did we leave them in a better heart condition?

May we too, put on yellow jackets (in spirit of course) link arms with another and join the heavenly forces. May our words of encouragement be met with our actions of love. May we love enough to point out, pick up, and remove any debris. I am fully persuaded there WILL be times when it is messy, times when we get a bit of jet fuel dumped all over us, but Beloved, it is worth it! To see them… soaring! Perhaps we too would hear the theme to Star Wars, well personally I prefer the theme to ROCKY! (queue instrumental song in your head)

Walking the deck with and for others.

In Him, DeDe (“Let us consider how we may spur one another towards love & good deeds.” – Heb. 10:24)

 

There IS a reason

Slippery sign

Young Jeffery comes running in the house on the freshly mopped tile floor, his mom looks up and energetically says, “Be careful!” Mumbling he whispers, “Why?” continuing on as he looks over his shoulder at her, just when he slips and falls head long into the corner of the kitchen table. “So that you don’t slip and fall.”

I appreciate how the word of God is so very practical. We find that God gives insight and instruction with purpose.   Often that purpose is just to know His un-limited love. Did you know the VERY significant itty bitty phrase “so that” occurs 747 times in the Bible. Yes, I looked at each one, (with a few mugs of mint hot cocoa mind you) Let’s open our bibles and look at EVERY one! (just kidding) “Perseverance must finish its work SO THAT you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” ( Ja. 1:4 emphasis mine) It’s not just our Father saying, “Because I said so” God has a reason!

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, SO THAT the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” – 2 Tim. 3:16-17

Paul prays  “I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, SO THAT you may know Him better”  – Eph. 1:17  You may know Him better, that is some great ‘purpose.’

Paul’s story is FULL of ‘so that’s.’  “For you have heard of my previous way of life in Judaism, how intensely I persecuted the church of God and tried to destroy it. I was advancing in Judaism beyond many Jews of my own age and was extremely zealous for the traditions of my fathers. But when God, (don’t you just love the ‘But when God’) who set me apart from birth and called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son in me SO THAT I might preach him among the Gentiles.” – Gal. 1:13-16 (excited commentary, my interjection)

‘Hina’ (hee-naw) is ‘so that ‘in the Greek, conveys ‘demonstrative idea’, meaning, forward thinking, I am telling you this because… impling cause and affect, one might say a huge street sign of sorts.  “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, SO THAT we may receive mercy and Onlyfind grace to help us in our time of need.” – Heb. 4:16  “These things I (Jesus) have spoken to you SO THAT you will not go astray.” – Jn 16:1  Think if you will, if we failed to approach the throne of grace, or heed the words of Jesus, what would our experience be?  Cause and affect.

Those who do not know God or His word find the bible a ‘rule’ book,  full of ‘Thou shall nots..”  Yet we who do know Him, know it is all said for our good.  God is, does, and gives ‘so that ….’  All this is God Fathering us. Let’s face it, God doesn’t need a reason and notice He doesn’t pull the “I AM THAT I AM” card, because “I” said so.   “Walk in the ways of the Lord your God, SO THAT you may live and prosper.” –Deut. 5:33

Put on the full armor of God SO THAT you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.” – Eph. 6:11    Use the Word I gave you, so you are ARMED against the Liar, Killer and Destroyer!

May we take notice, read the signs and understand ALL He has to say to us, even the itty-bitty words.  God has a reason!

In Him, DeDe (Breaking it down so that  “… we may spur one another on towards love & good deeds.” – Heb. 10:24)

Delight

Study time

Words.  Love them.  They are our primary form of communication.   Well besides physical touch, (group hug!)  I have the wonderful privilege of conversing with many people, via texting, emailing, phone and YES, I am a Facebooker or the old fashion way, face to face.  I am often asked some really great questions.  Questions that cause me to ponder, investigate and study HARD to find some form of an intelligent answer.  And frankly, if I can’t, I will simply respond with “Uh, I dunno.”

A friend asked,  “The preacher was reciting the verse, “Delight in the law of the Lord”. Hmmmm. What do you think that means?”  Alrighty!  Hands clasped together, now ringing with complete excitement!   HUGE smile on my face.  I took some time to think this through and pray and yep pulled out the ‘good stuff.’

Here we go:  I do not know the ‘context’ that the preacher was using. However, to sum it up quickly, ‘law’ in the OT basically means ‘word’ – God’s word to them/us.   The first 5 books are called the Books of the Law (Torah).  The ‘Law of the Lord’ is affectionately known as the “Law of Love.”  I have included a website (at the bottom and geeky side note) that explains very simply about those 5 books.

Delight  (‘hepe‘ in the Hebrew) means ‘desire,’  may be used for that which a person wishes ‘strongly to do or have’.  Now put in context to Gods law, His word to the Israelites, on a practical sense, breaking it down – His word to you and I.  Do we desire strongly to have His word in our heart – do we desire strongly to DO IT!  This delight is NOT a fleeting emotion, it is not a hap-hazard ‘want’.  It is HAVE to have.  Some scholars describe it as a ‘pursuit’.  Do we PURSUE God and His word.  (hm…)  Here’s a get in your face thought (it did mine)  Do I simply ‘believe in God’  or do I BELIEVE God?  Big difference.  If I believe in Him, that is nice, He’s an awesome Creator and that may be as far as I go. But if I ‘believe Him’, I will – DELIGHT, desire – PURSUE.  (sigh)

Back to the phrase, “Delight in the law of the Lord.”  Let’s  look at Psalms 119.  Go ahead, grab your Bible, I’ll wait.   See how many times the words ‘law-statues-precepts-decree-commands-word’ are mentioned? When time permits, go back and underline each one. Verse 16 “I delight in your decrees.”   Verse 24 “Your statues are my delight..”  Verse 47 “I delight in your comands” (to name a few)  It proceeds to state that Gods word – His Law affects us that our response is:  “I learn-believe-speak-trust-hope-keep-obey-live-follow-meditate and stray not from Your word  –  ‘law’.  Verse 97 “Oh, how I love your law… ”  Verse 120 ” I stand in awe of your laws…”

My favorite use of  ‘delight is in the law of the Lord’ is in Psalm 1.    Quick paraphrase,  “Blessed is the man who does not walk with the wicked-stand in the way of sinners – sit in the seat of mockers.”  (v. 1)  See the progression ,’walk-stand-sit’, ends up pretty tight, (another study sometime).  THEN verse 2 “BUT his delight is in the law of the Lord…” But his desire is Gods word to him.  I will personalize it.  I have a PASSION for His word, there are times I have ‘strayed’ but not so far and so long, as to not ‘desire’ His word, for me – it beckons me.  (I’m wierd)  To be BLUNT,  all we really have IS His word.  In print.  Lasting GENERATIONS. YET… it is not just mere words on paper.  Heb.4:12  “For the word of God is living and active…”  Ever been reading and BOOM, the word literally jumps off the page and ATTACKS your heart!  Amazing stuff.  It is the relationship with the inspiring Author, that makes the book so stinkin exciting.  (ok, breathe, rein it in DeDe)

You may say, “But I don’t really have THAT kind of desire for God’s word, I am not compelled to read it or WANT it, but I would like to.”  Then ask God for it.   King David wrote, “Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.” (Ps. 37:4)  I am fully persuaded, David didn’t mean, be happy in God and He will grant all your hearts wildest dreams.  I believe God plants those desires there, in your heart.  Desires for Him, His word, righteousness.  I know He did mine, because frankly I am WAY too lazy to muster up this kind of passion for anything, and passion it is.

After sharing this with my friend, she said ‘delight’ is now her new word.  How exciting!  Delight on Lord!  Delight her with awestruck moments of Holy inspired, need to take a deep breath stuff! May she continuely come back for more – day after day.  May we all!  Let the journey of the pursuit begin.

“Delight in the law of the Lord”.

In Him,  DeDe (“Let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love & good deeds.” – Heb.10:24)

* The Law: The First Five Books:  http://bible.org/seriespage/law-first-five-books

* Interesting Side Note: The Torah (“Teaching”) is the Jewish name for the first five books of the Jewish Bible. In Hebrew the five books are named by the first phrase in the text: Bereshit (“In [the] beginning,” Genesis), Shemot (“Names,” Exodus), Vayikra (“He called”, Leviticus), Bamidbar (“In the desert,” Numbers) and Devarim (“Words,” Deuteronomy).

Resource List: Strong’s Concordance, Vine’s Expository Dictionary of OT & NT, Theological Dictionary of the OT, Bible Knowledge Commentary on the book of Psalms, Hebrew Interlinear Bible, NIV, KJV.  (and any other geeky book or website I may have grabbed and read)

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