I just can’t see My Leftovers

It is so easy to fall back into bad habits and worry. I have a mountainous list of things to do in a short period of time. “I just can’t see how” it will all get done. There is a financial component that “I just can’t see how” I will get it paid on time. The problem here is not how it will get done or the cost. The problem is “I just can’t see.” My answer to my real problem popped up in my bible study this morning.

Mark 8:18-21. My paraphrase

Y’shua (Jesus) said to his disciples, “Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees.” They thought he was talking about bread. They forgot to get some for the trip. Y’shua knowing this asked them, when he fed the 4000 and the 5000 what happened? He reminded them that not only did he supply the need but there was an abundance of leftovers. The unspoken questions, I believe, are why would I be warning you about the Pharisees’ bread. Even more so, why are you worrying about not bringing any. Don’t you yet know, I will supply the need?

That was the message to me. With all that I have done for you, especially in the last year and half, all the miracles you have experienced, all the needs met, why are you worried about all you have to get done and how much it will cost? Don’t you yet understand WHO your supplier is? I have supplied your need and you have had an abundance of leftovers. 

Do YOU need to be reminded of your leftovers? Are you worrying about things you know full well Y’shua has the authority to handle? STOP.

We have an abundance of leftovers.

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The Tradition of Men

Have we laid aside the commandments of God for the traditions of men? This was Y’shua’s main complaint against the Pharisees.  Do we care more about what our particular denomination says rather than what God says? Even the non-denominational churches have traditions. Do we care more about our evangelical conservative view than the views of God? What are we teaching the world about the God we say we serve? Have we become like the Pharisees of old? Are we the Pharisees of the present? What would God say about us? I challenge you to examine yourselves to determine if you have laid aside God’s commandments or maybe are selective in the one’s you obey for the traditions of men.

Mark 6

6  He answered and said to them,

“Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written:

‘This people honors Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me.

7  And in vain they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’

8  “For laying aside the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men–the washing of pitchers and cups, and many other such things you do.”

9  He said to them, “All too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your tradition.”

Just something to think about.

The bold is mine.

You Talking About Me?

It is believed Malachi prophesied after the exiled Israelites had returned home and the wall  and the Temple had been rebuilt. Sacrifices had been resumed. They seemed secure but were still under Persian dominance. The people had become disillusioned because some of the prophecies of wealth and independence had not been fulfilled. The prevailing thought was “God did not love them so why serve Him?” The priests who were responsible for the spiritual well-being of the people were now corrupt. They did not teach the people the laws of God. They did not insist that the people obey the laws of God. The sacrifices to God had become less than their best and had become just something to do to say we observed the ritual, but did nothing to reverence God. Why sacrifice if what you are sacrificing is defective or of poor quality?. And they stopped tithing.

As I read about these conditions, I felt Malachi could have been talking directly to us. Many of us are disillusioned and don’t believe God loves us. We don’t see His promises being fulfilled in our lives or so we think. Church is just something to do to check off the box.Oh and what beautiful buildings they are.  Many of us who say we believe don’t really reverence God. We don’t give Him our best. We give Him inferior sacrifices and complain about tithing. We, too, have corrupt priests, preachers, pastors. They don’t teach God’s laws or guide us to righteousness. They teach “getting all you can and give it to me.”

Here is the LORD of Host’s answer through Malachi to Israel and to Us.

I do love you. You are still here. I haven’t destroyed you.

To the priests, et al. I am not pleased with you. You bring me defective offerings and I will not accept them.

Paraphrase: You despised my name among the nations. You profaned the offering.You gave to me less than your best and I won’t accept it.

I am a great King.

My name (my position, authority and character) will be reverenced.

 

 

My Heart Hurts

My heart hurts. I went to bed last night hurt and angry about the continued killings of black men. I watched the videos to make my own assessment and I found no justification for shooting Alton Sterling multiple times in the chest. He was already subdued. Philando Castile did not appear to pose a threat, yet he was shot with his child in the back seat. I felt like I was back in the Jim Crow south where lynchings could happen just because …. Then there was the white kid lying on the ground and then was shot. Why?

I awaken this morning to the information that a peaceful protest turned violent because someone decided to take their anger out by shooting several policemen. There was no reason for that anymore than there was for shooting those men.

America what are we becoming? We might as well be in Afghanistan or Syria. We worry about ISIS but it is us who are destroying this country. We are terrorizing ourselves. If they just wait a little while we will self destruct and they won’t have to do anything. We cannot continue like this.

Ignorance opens the door for Fear. Fear makes it easy to Hate. Hatred breeds Hatred.

Let’s try reasoning with each other.

Let’s try understanding each other.

Let’s try not repeating the negative past.

Let’s try living out what we say we believe as a nation.

Let’s admit we have a systemic problem. The rest of the world already knows it.

Let’s try loving each other even when we disagree.

Let’s stop killing each other.

My heart hurts for us.

 

Matthew 4 – Basics

Sometimes when you think you know a narrative you tend to over look some interesting and enlightening facts. I am trying to look at this text with fresh eyes to see what I am really being told.

Matthew 4:1-11 The Temptation

I never noticed or realized the first two temptations were accusations against the man Y’shua. “If you” was the accusation. The response was thrown back to the authority of God’s word.  The final temptation went straight to the original intent. Satan (Adverary) vs. God. Who will you worship? Y’shua dropped the mic. He said get out of my face It is written you only worship God and Him only shall you serve. Why would the Word of God bow down to God’s Adversary? Please!!

Matthew 4:14 Galilee of the Gentiles

Where is this? I always thought Galilee where the tribes of Jacob settled. We usually forget there were non-Jews there before they came and others moved in later. Looking at Strong’s it says it is a circle of Gentiles or circle of nations, non-Jews. He went to them and declared the authority of God is here. This was the light brought to them. This was the gospel He brought to them.

I also noticed

23 And Jesus went about all Galilee,

and preaching the gospel of the kingdom,teaching in their synagogues,

(the good news of the reign of God Matt 4:23 Youngs’ Literal Translation)

and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people.

24 And his fame went throughout all Syria:

and they brought unto him all sick people that were taken with divers diseases and torments,

and those which were possessed with devils,      (possessed or controlled by evil spirits, spiritually ill)

and those which were lunatick,                                  ( mentally ill)

and those that had the palsy;                                      (paralytic, physically ill)

and he healed them.

The text goes on to say that large multitudes followed Him from Galilee, Decapolis (ten-city region in Syria), Jerusalem, Judea and beyond Jordan. This is widespread awareness of Him. All of this seems to be in the first year of His ministry.

How did I miss so much?

Reflective Inventory

A few days ago my son asked me what was the purpose of my blog; why was it “random thoughts.” I told him that I had thoughts about many different things, so I didn’t want to be limited to one train of thought. He then said, “Oh, it’s just your journal.” That stung. Was it the characterization or maybe his perceived tone? Nevertheless, he made me take inventory and that required reflective thought.

From that process I solidified the purpose and structure of this blog. It may not be very marketable but I hope it will be fun or at least memorable. I want to be free to dabble in poetry and storytelling. I want to share insights from my personal bible studies. Who knows I might do a series of teachings on a subject. I want to share information regrading mental health and my rich culture.

20151115_160611
Out of darkness , light.

I want to share

spontaneous images like seeing a double rainbow or light shooting from a dark cloud. I even want to share a new experiment in my laboratory (kitchen).

Yes these are the kinds of things I want to share.

Now, I know what I want to accomplish with this blog. I want to

  1. Inform
  2. Provoke thought
  3. Inspire and encourage
  4. Challenge
  5. Learn from others
  6. Engage in conversation with people who have different backgrounds and experiences.

It will still be Random thoughts.

It will still be My journal.

It Would Be So Easy

It would be so easy to hate the shooter in the Charleston Church.

Nine dead for no obvious reason but hatred.

It would be so easy to hate the system and environment that bred that hatred.

It would  be so easy to travel back in time to slavery in the Carolinas and

Hate all slave owners, slave brokers and the good people who said nothing.

It would be so easy to blame his parents and

Hate them.

It would be so easy!

But rather I choose to do the HARD thing.

I choose to pray for the hearts and minds of the victims’ families

That they forgive the shooter in the midst of their grief.

I choose to pray for change in the shooter’s mind.

Living life abundantly, securely not fearfully for others.

I choose to forgive the system that bred this hatred.

I choose to understand that they are not living free

But bound in the prison of hatred and they don’t know it.

I choose the HARD thing.

Otherwise, I will become bound in the chains of hate;

My words will shoot the bullets of anger and hatred.

I will become him.

I choose the Hard thing.

27  “But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,
28  bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. 

Luke 6:27-28 (ESV) 

A Natural Sedative

“Food is thy medicine. medicine is thy food.” -Hippocrates

A few days ago I made a vegetable-juice smoothie for my lunch. I drank it while visiting my husband. I shared it with him. That was not a good idea. Yes, he needed the nutrients and it was healthy but there was a sedative in the drink.  I had no idea. My alert husband was suddenly a very sleepy man. I thought his medications were the culprits but alas, it was me and my juice. I don”t know why I didn’t get as sleepy. I looked back on my day and I did get pretty relaxed. I guess he was more vulnerable in his weaken state.

I discovered while researching something else that Walnuts contained an acid that is a powerful sedative. So if you can’t sleep eat a handful of walnuts and go to bed.  🙂 I am not guaranteeing deep sleep but you stand a good chance of relaxing.