Monday, March 30, 2015

Nahum 1:12-15

v. 12-15 "This is what the Lord says:
Although they have allies and are numerous, 
they will be cut off and pass away.
Although I have afflicted you, O Judah,
I will afflict you no more.
Now I will break their yoke from your neck
and tear your shackles away.

The Lord has given a command concerning you, Nineveh:
You will have no descendants to bear your name.
I will destroy the carved images and cast idols
that are in the temple of your gods.
I will prepare your grave,
for you are vile.

Look, there on the mountains, 
the feet of one who brings good news,
who proclaims peace!
Celebrate your festivals, O Judah,
and fulfill your vows.
No more will the wicked invade you;
they will be completely destroyed."

Depending what side of the fence you are on will determine how you see God.  If you are following His decrees then you are under His protection, grace will abound and you see a loving God.  If you are consumed by anger, hatred and unforgiveness then you will see a mean God.  We have a choice to make, a decision that will determine our destiny.  This message was to give hope to Judah who had been under attack from Nineveh.

God begins this section with the observation that the enemy has many on their side and sounds invincible, but they will still be cut down.  God does not do this to brag about His powers.  This is for for our benefit.  When we see the odds are overwhelmingly against us then we have to remember that God is more, He is greater than anything else.

Here is says that God afflicted Judah.  He didn't ignore them or walk away from them.  God took action against people who walked away from Him.   To be afflicted means: to distress with mental or bodily pain; trouble greatly or grievously, to overthrown, defeat or humble.  Why did God afflict Judah?  After Solomon died the kingdom was split into two different lands.  The northern kingdom was Israel and the southern kingdom was Judah.  Does anyone else know what happens when a land splits up?  Your power, military, wealth, etc. is weakened by the division.  You are prone to attacks from other countries.  Many of the kings of both lands (Israel and Judah) were evil and corrupt and some killed the prior king to gain power.  Is anyone wondering why God would let His people be captured when they kept turning away from Him?

God broke the yoke from the people.  A yoke was a device for joining two animals together to control them so that a farmer could plow a field.  Yoke also means something that binds together, a bond or a tie.  A weight is lifted from their spirit, soul and maybe a physically feeling of being set free.

The thought of God preparing graves is one of those verses that just stick out to me.  I don't think this is one of those scriptures that is hard to decipher.  God was not messing around here, He meant business. Wow.

God made those nameless that had in turn made their captives destroy the bones of their ancestors which took away their history and family names.  God knows justice.

We see that it is not all bad news, for the people of Judah they are to celebrate their festivals again, but they are also suppose to fulfill their vows.  We can not just celebrate and have a party when we become a Christian.  When we come to the Father we have to repent for our sins.  While they were captives they could not celebrate or pursue their religion.  When God sets us free we are to celebrate Him, celebrate life and honor God in all that we do.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Quote - Dr. Seuss

"Why fit in when you were born to stand out."

~ Dr. Seuss

We spend so many years trying to fit in especially in the teen years that we forget how to be original and stand out.  In large part this is helped by people who bully others.  When we blend in then we don't usually get picked on.  It's the safe route, but not the best one.  God made us special and we are all different and that is perfectly OK.  Be proud of who God made you to be, He does not make mistakes!

Dr. Seuss was a brilliant writer.  As an adult reading the books to my kids I have noticed the lessons that are weaved into his stories.  Among the nonsense words there is a treasure of wisdom that can help us all as kids, teens and adults.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Quote - Thomas S. Monson

"There is really no way we can know the heart, the intentions, or the circumstances of someone who might say or do something we find reason to criticize. Thus the commandment: 'Judge not.'"

~Thomas S. Monson

Friday, March 6, 2015

My Media Fast

I am leading the 7 Experiment bible study by Jen Hatmaker.  This week is Media so that means I won't be online that much, only to blog (this is my ministry), pay bills, etc.  No fun window shopping or anything like that.  Loving this bible study and will talk about it later.  The entire point of the study is to let go of the stuff in our lives to get closer to Jesus.  One of the better studies that I have ever done.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Don't let the words from others derail you.

"There is no convincing proof of your claim except delusion."

This is a comment I received from my post on Jonah 4:6.  I find if very interesting some of the comments that I get from people who don't seem to believe.  God is planting seeds all over the place that could grow in the future.  Our job as believers is not to argue, we should be showing love and kindness to those people.  Instead of pushing them away by saying how wrong they are.  The truth IS and since that is the case it can not be argued without us looking like strange or mean people and us getting so upset that we loose all composure.  Remember that the enemy is waiting for us to look like a fool before those that don't believe.  He wants as many as possible to stray from the flock as he can get and unfortunately he is doing a bang up job of it.

Here is my response.

Just saw your comment, yes I am extremely behind on my emails!  So you think I am delusional?  That is OK, because I do not do this to be liked.  Everyone has their own opinions and we are free to share what we believe.  When you bring up "proof" then I know I can not argue with you because believers need no proof, yet non believers will not move forward without it.  It can be pointless to try to get someone else to see your point of view when they are dead set against it.  Do you believe in the wind?  You can't see the wind or grasp it in your hands, yet you can see what it can do.  Does this mean that it doesn't exist?

My proof is the word of God, the things that I have seen on this earth that are not from this world.  I have felt God's peace, which is unlike anything on this planet and people will destroy themselves to try to find it in other things.  I was a sinner who deserved no grace yet God poured His love down on me and has changed me forever.  So when someone is in a place that I know well (unbelief) then I can only offer them kindness.  I can't hold bitterness towards you or anyone else because God does not hold that against me.  Being a Christian is not a religion, it is a personal relationship with Jesus and I will go on proclaiming His goodness for all of my days.

I know that many Christians have been the worst promoters for God, saying one thing and doing something entirely different.  Do you think it was an accident that you stumbled on my post?  It was not, God has a plan for you even if you do not believe in Him.  He loves you so much, but I think that you do not know that.  I pray one day that you will know His love because when you do there will be a change in your heart that will grant you passage to beautiful love here on earth and an eternity of love.