Day 264

“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.”  (John 1:14)

This blog has been dedicated this year to the idea of us taking time to dwell in the Lord and His Word.  But today as we “dwell” we are going to look at a time when Jesus came to dwell with us.

The word John uses for dwelt in verse 14 has the idea of pitching a tent.

Pitching and dwelling in a tent is something I know quite a bit about.  This year I have spent my fair share of time pitching a tent with my husband while we travel from church to church.  Sometimes we are at a campground for a couple of weeks.  Sometimes the campground we drive up to is so creepy we wonder if we should have looked further for a better one!  Overall, I am not in my element camping because it is not my favorite thing to use a public toilet and shower.  I don’t like getting up in the middle of the night and walking by flashlight to an old wooden building that is full of bugs and mud while a skunk waddles nearby.  I don’t enjoy flicking caterpillars off of my shoulders and hair every few seconds while making sure they haven’t dropped into my coffee.  It isn’t easy to get dressed for church and run from the tent in the rain to the van.  And sometimes I lay on the blowup mattress and wonder if my back can handle another night.  But I do it because of Brazil.  Brazil is worth everything to me.  I will go through temporary uncomfortableness because there is a place and a people that need to hear about the Lord.

The Lord came and dwelt here among mankind in human form.  We call that incarnation.  His divine presence took on the form of flesh and it was with a purpose.  The tabernacle was a picture of this in the Old Testament.  It was a transportable tent, not very illustrious on the outside, but filled with beauty on the inside where the Holy of Holies was and only the Priest was allowed to see.

John writes of the Lord and His incarnation in such a beautiful way in today’s verse.  He knew Christ on a personal level and describes how he viewed Him….full of grace and truth.

Jesus took time to do a work that could be performed by no other here on earth.  He took this time and suffered the cruelest of hardships and He did it for one reason.

Us.

How precious of a thought to think that the Most High God thought you and I were worth everything.  He loves you and me in a way we cannot fathom.

I want us to end this week thinking and dwelling on the thought of how much Christ loves us and how that ought to motivate us to thank Him with our lives and our service for this up coming weekend.

You are loved.  Period.

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

Day 263

“And he said unto them, What manner of communications are these that ye have one to another, as ye walk, and are sad?”  (Luke 24:17)

If you have time right now, open your Bible to Luke 24:13.  Read from there to the end of the chapter to get a full look at what happens when Jesus does a little explaining.

I am fascinated with the stories of the resurrection.  I know it isn’t Easter time right now and most folks are looking forward to Fall and Christmas, but I just haven’t been able to get away from the resurrection this year.  It is a moment of perfect, redeeming victory for all of us.

In the verses from 13-31, there is such a beautiful picture painted of what happens when we talk to the Lord and allow Him to answer.  These two disciples have just left Jerusalem and are talking as they walked toward their village.  I can picture them going back and forth wondering if everything that they had believed in concerning Christ was wrong.  They didn’t know Jesus had come up alongside them and when he questions them about what they are talking about, they are more than happy to bounce all their thoughts off of Him.  He listens without interrupting (I LOVE THAT). Jesus listens to us and all our crazy observations and feeling and disappointments when we talk to Him!

Of course, Jesus always instructs in the RIGHT way though.  We should expect that of Him.  Jesus calls these two disciples fools.  This just makes me chuckle.  I wonder if He rubbed his brow and shook His head as He said it?  Did He stop his walking for a second in incredulity at their lack of discernment of the Scripture?  I really wish I could have seen this exact moment.

Just after Jesus calls them fools, He doesn’t berate them but He does something that really stuck out to me.  He went straight to the Word of God for His response to their account of recent days about the crucifixion and His own death.  He starts at Moses and teaches a Bible lesson right then and there on their walk.

Looking at this account, it makes me realize that when I am in doubt about things in my life I can and SHOULD go to the Word for understanding.  I can spend a whole lot of time chatting things over with a buddy or I can turn my attention to the Bible and allow It to truly help me.

Jesus does everything in perfection doesn’t He?  Do you think there would have been a more perfect way to respond to His friends and followers than to point them to the Word?  Then why don’t we follow His instruction as well and go to the Word too?!

You can read all the blogs and books you want, but nothing will ever help you as much as reading the Bible will.  Read with understanding.  Read prayerfully.  Most importantly, READ.

Who is with you on your walk today?  Are you considering the fact that Jesus is listening and waiting to tell you something?  Are you more concerned with ruminating over the events of your lives than you are believing in what the Word has to say about them?

Jesus will listen to you today if you have to talk some things over.  He may call you foolish for your unbelief, but don’t get your feelings hurt because He is about to teach you what you need to know and point you in the way you need to go.

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

Day 262

“And they remembered his words,”  (Luke 24:8)

Last year some time I was reading through Luke and when I came to this verse I stopped and wept.  I am a visual person and imagine what is going on while I read.  I could envision the women hurrying to the tomb with their spices and ointments to do one last service for their Master.  They had probably gotten up super early and gathered everything up that they needed before meeting each other to walk together to where Jesus had been buried.  The Bible says they were perplexed when they didn’t find Him there.  They were afraid when the two men appeared and questioned them.  (If that had been me, I probably would have fainted dead away)

Then we come to verse 8 when the women remembered Jesus’ words.  I can see their mouths hanging open and their eyes looking around as they recounted in their minds when Jesus said He would rise up again.  I wonder if their cheeks flushed with embarrassment that they had expected to find His body?

The important thing to view here is that they REMEMBERED Jesus’ words.

I get very caught up in my life’s “going’s-on” don’t you?  Sometimes we live in a whirl wind of routine and schedules doing what is demanded and expected of us as women.  We are all flexible and capable workers in our homes, ministries and business.  We pride ourselves on being problem solvers and duty keepers.  We run our lives with as much efficiency as we can (and the lives of those around us sometimes) We give our all.

But if we are not reminding ourselves of what Jesus said in His Word, we may end up doing something that is not needful.  Remember Mary and Martha?  Mary did what was needed.

What do we need to remember today?  What has Jesus said concerning us, our family and our lives?

I can think of a few verses to meditate on:

“Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.”  (Psalms 46:10)

“I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.”  (John 14:18)

“But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows.”  (Luke 12:7)

“A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.”  (James 1:8)

“Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath:”  (James 1:19)

“And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.”  (Romans 16:20)

“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.”  (1 Corinthians 15:58)

There are a lot of things to remember to guide our daily lives and thoughts.  Let’s remember what He said!

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

 

Day 261

“And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read. And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord. And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him. And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.”  (Luke 4:16-21)

It’s been a while since I have heard a sermon preached from this passage of Scripture which is from Isaiah 61.  What a lovely reminder to find it waiting on me in the book of Luke today!

I have been studying on how a Christian should view themselves when they are away from God and living in sin.  Obviously we know that we are to maintain a daily, consecrated walk with the Lord and confess our sins, but what about when we lapse?  I talk to a LOT of people who are away from the Lord and feel like the church is against them.  Hey….I AM PART OF THE CHURCH!  I don’t ever want someone to feel as though I am against them.  I always want to try and have the attitude of Christ.  So that has led me to study this subject.

And wouldn’t you know, God gives me a great verse to base my thoughts upon?!

When Jesus reads from the book of Isaiah, he says he has been sent to heal the broken-hearted.  This is in reference to being broken from sin.  He is the Healer, not only of physical needs, but more importantly, our spiritual ones.

If you are away from God and happen to be reading this today, may I say that Jesus will not reject your prayer today if you want to talk to Him.  He already knows your situation, your personality, your hang ups and your frustrations.  The best thing you can do is to find a quiet place alone and go talk to Him.  No anvil is going to be thrown from the sky on top of your head.  Your life may seem completely in ruin right now and to be honest, it probably has the chance of getting a lot messier because of sin, but would’t it be better to go through it with the Lord helping you instead of by yourself?

If you are a friend or family member of someone who is away from God, maybe your attitude needs evaluation as well.  Are you behaving like Christ and offering them an avenue of healing or are you standing in the path with your arms crossed and denying them the opportunity to see grace and love from you?  (Ouch! This steps on my toes)

We all know sin brings death and misery.  Let’s keep ourselves away from that path by maintaining our walk with the Lord, but let’s also be willing to reach out to someone when they are so broken by their choices and need a kind word.

We have all been there.  We have all made a mess of our lives.  It is not easy for us to admit, but think back to when you were sitting in a parked car crying and trying to figure out how to get back to the Lord.  Think back to when you held the phone receiver in your hand and knew the other person who just hung up on you had asked for a divorce.  Think back to the time when you woke up with a hangover and wondered how you ever got so far away from the Lord and didn’t know how to come back.  Would you have liked to have had a friend in that moment?  Someone to listen and love you no matter what?  Then be that person to someone else!  Jesus was.

I wonder what it would have been like to hear Jesus in the synagogue that day as all eyes were fastened on Him?  The Bible points out that everyone was paying attention.  I wonder if someone found hope in that moment after He closed the book and the echo of His voice filtered through the air.  I think it must have been an amazing few seconds.  Yet, those are probably the same people who yelled “Crucify Him”.  It’s possible to see Jesus and hear Jesus and still be a hypocrite.

How many people will we continue to push away from the Lord just because it makes us feel better about ourselves?  This is such a huge problem in the Independent Baptist Church that it makes me sad.  It’s as though we have more compassion for the lost than we do our own brothers and sisters in Christ.

“For the Son of man is not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them.”  (Luke 9:56a)

Reach out to someone or to SomeOne today…..point towards the Healer or run to Him yourself.  There is great relief there in His presence.

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

 

 

Day 260

“But go your way, tell his disciples and Peter that he goeth before you into Galilee: there shall ye see him, as he said unto you.”  (Mark 16:7)

I have been copying Scripture as an exercise in reading diligently those passages that have become familiar to me.  Included in those passages are the first four books of the New Testament.  When I came upon Mark 16, I took note of verse 7 and paused.  First I noticed that Peter was specifically mentioned by name and then the little phrase, “there ye shall see him” popped out at me as I copied it down.

My life has taken on such a busy-ness this past year as we have traveled for furlough.  My husband and I often talk about how we live in a constant state of confusion about where we are.  We have to purposefully think about what state we are in at the moment. It may sound silly to you, but it is a very real struggle.  Our brains tire from answering questions about the work in Brazil and at times our flesh wants to take over and we envision ourselves screaming at the next person that asks us how we are enjoying our “vacation” from the field.  We wonder if Christians here at home even have a burden for souls anymore as they sit in pews with glazed looks on their eyes and check their watches to see if we are going over our allotted speaking time.  The altars usually remain empty, even after Mark preaches about the reality of hell.

City to city, state to state, and Church to Church.  We go, set up, present, fellowship, break down the table, head back to our tent, and wonder if anyone even listened.  All the while continuing to minister to our people in Brazil, parent our 4 adult children, try and find time for each other and our marriage and reach out to whatever community we are in at the moment.

But in the midst of all this coming and going, God reminded me of something.  One of these days I am going to see Jesus.  Just like the angel pointed to where He would be after the ressurrection to give the ladies and the disciples and Peter some hope, I too am able to look forward to the day when my eyes shall behold Him.

“Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.”  (Revelation 1:7)

That is why we went to Brazil in the first place!  It’s because He is coming again one day.  That’s my reset button.  So what if people in the pews are cold and hardened towards the need, I DON’T HAVE TO BE!  I can keep remembering that hell is real, Jesus is coming and one of these days we are all going to see Him.

Maybe you need reminding about this today as well.  It isn’t a fairytale that someone wrote down to create a new religion.  The Word of God is indisputable in It’s accuracy and had Jesus not resurrected those disciples wouldn’t have gone on to turn the world upside down. (Acts 17:6).

Love with all you have today and with grace try and influence the life of someone around you.  Jesus is coming and we are all going to see Him.  Let’s try and reach the world for Him.  Let’s continue in our separate callings together for the same Cause and never ever forget that what we are doing has eternal consequences.

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

Day 259

STUDY TIME!

(On Saturdays and Sundays my blog posts will give you a verse to study. I won’t give you the reference….you have to find it for yourself. I will then ask you some questions)

VERSE:

“”And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.”

STUDY:

  • Are you obeying these two commandments?
  • If we are loving Him with all that we have, will there be any room for hate?

*** HELPFUL TIP ***

If you do not own a concordance or commentary, try downloading the e-sword app to your phone or tablet. This app can be VERY useful when you want to do a word study or find a verse when you are on the go.

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

Day 258

STUDY TIME!

(On Saturdays and Sundays my blog posts will give you a verse to study. I won’t give you the reference….you have to find it for yourself. I will then ask you some questions)

VERSE:

“And Jesus stood still, and commanded him to be called. And they call the blind man, saying unto him, Be of good comfort, rise; he calleth thee.”

STUDY:

  • What happened that caused Jesus to stand still?
  • Why do you think Jesus had the man come to Him instead of the other way around?
  • Have you ever wondered where Bartimaeus was on the day of Crucifixion or the resurrection?
  • Are we using our faith only when we need it or is it a life practice?

*** HELPFUL TIP ***

If you do not own a concordance or commentary, try downloading the e-sword app to your phone or tablet. This app can be VERY useful when you want to do a word study or find a verse when you are on the go.

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri