Tag Archives: holiness

Whole World in His Hands

A foggy morning greets me as I sit for our time together, Father. It is beautiful to behold. All the nuances of Your creation are a constant reminder of Your power and might and Your attention to detail. Your hand in creation is a great reassurance that Your hand is upon my life as well. Thank You, Father.

Revelation 5:1-5 (<<click the green)

In the midst of this scene of power and might and holiness, with everyone lifting praise deservingly to God, stands a strong and mighty angel. And in reference to a sealed scroll which God holds in His hand, he shouts in loud voice,

“Who is worthy to break the seals on this scroll and open it?” vs2

The Amplified Bible puts it this way,

“Who is worthy to open the scroll? And [who is entitled and deserves and is morally fit] to break its seals?” vs2

And because no one in all of heaven or earth or under the earth stepped forward, the Apostle John wept bitterly.

But one of the twenty-four elders said to [John], “Stop weeping! Look, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the heir to David’s throne, has won the victory. He is worthy to open the scroll and its seven seals.” vs5

I realize that that is a lot of introduction but as I write, Lord, it must be stressed that only You, the Lion of Judah, are worthy. In all of eternity both forward and backward only You were able to live a life of perfect obedience to God. Only You were able to pay the penalty for the sins of all humanity by dying on the cross. Only You in Your resurrection proclaimed Your power over evil and death! And because only You “won the victory,” only You “can be trusted with the world’s future”!*

A song from my childhood comes to mind. The repeated line of the first verse says it all, “He’s got the whole world in his hands.”

No matter where we find ourselves in our life’s journey, Lord, we are safely in Your hands…and that is where I want to remain. Amen.

Aug 15th, Tues, 6:24 am

*Core concepts expressed in this paragraph are from the Life Application Study Bible New Living Translation

Truly Worthy

Morning has come, Father, and You have so graciously awoken me. You know how important our time together is and I am eager to do so no matter how much my bed may call out to me. Bless our time together, Father. Amen.

Revelation 4:6-11 (<<click the green)

Lord, there is much symbolism here. Just reading it is overwhelming and I can only imagine how the Apostle John felt. Just trying to visualize the “four living beings” in my in mind sends it reeling. But reading my study Bible* notes enables me to focus.

The entirety of Revelation points to You, Lord – who You are, what You have done and are doing and what You will do. You are the creator of everything that is – regardless of what we try to say. You are the sovereign Lord of it all and if we acknowledge it now or not there will come a day when we all will do so for there will be no room for denial.

These “four living beings”? They symbolize Your attributes – Your qualities and character. They lead us in worshipping You by proclaiming Your holiness. The lion symbolizes majesty and power, the ox symbolizes faithfulness, the human symbolizes intelligence, and the eagle sovereignty.

They and the “twenty-four elders” show us “where, why, and how to praise God.” We stop focusing on ourselves and focus on You – our perspectives are lifted from the “earthly to the heavenly.”

May these words guide me to praise You as well,

Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God, the Almighty—
    the one who always was, who is, and who is still to come.” vs8

“You are worthy, O Lord our God,
    to receive glory and honor and power.
For you created all things,
    and they exist because you created what you pleased.” vs11

Amen.

Aug 14th, Mon, 6:26 am

*Life Application Study Bible New Living Translation

Be Holy? You Betcha!

It’s been too long since I’ve come to sit with You, Father. I didn’t realize until just now that’s it’s been 4 days! I was thinking it had only been a couple! I’m sorry…I’m here to learn. Help me to listen.

1 Peter 1:13-16 (<<click here)

Lord, You have set the bar pretty high. Peter admonishes us to “prepare your minds for action,” so that’s where we begin. Living “as God’s obedient children” is challenging enough but being holy “in everything, I do, just as God who chose me is holy” – now that’s huge!

A couple of points come to mind. First of all, Lord, You want us to succeed. You would never set us up to fail. It’s not an easy task be we can do it. Of course, a big thing is we aren’t meant to do it by ourselves – You are there all along the way. You are there to teach and correct and encourages us all along the way. You strengthen and empower us.

Then Peter exclaims that Scripture commands us to “be holy because You are holy.” Lord, You yourself commanded us to “be perfect, as our heavenly Father is perfect.” Matthew 5:48

Many at this point would cry out, “Why even try?” It’s a lost cause! I’m sure not perfect much less holy! But we can’t give up. There are things for which we strive.

Think of all the musicians and athletes out there. Their goal is to be the very best they can be. Sometimes they are spot on. Their performance is flawless; they pull off world record breaking feats. Other times it’s back to the basics because it’s just not happening. But when they falter, do they quit? No! They push on!

We must do the same spiritually! We will make mistakes! We will sin! And total holiness and perfection will only become a reality when we join You in eternity. But one must strain and push ourselves to attain the goals You’ve set for us for it is so worth it not just for eternity but for here and now, as well.

Oct 28th, Fri, 6:15 am

Empty Vessels

empty

As we come together this morning, Father, I would ask that You would help me to focus in on what You would have me to hear and to do. Help me to use our time together wisely. Multiply the little I have into an abundance that will most benefit your kingdom here on earth. Amen.

Lord, You led me to once again look at the Puritan prayer I read through yesterday It spoke to me yesterday, but portions jumped out to me today.

Fill me with thy Spirit
    that I may be occupied with his presence…
Send him as the searcher of my heart,
    to show me of my corruptions and helplessness
    that I may flee to thee,
                           cling to thee,
                           rest on thee,
     as the beginning and end of my salvation.

In worship yesterday, with Your leading, You had me speak of making ourselves empty vessels. I readily admit that I am a weak vessel… but You well know that I am a willing vessel, too. With the filling of Your Spirit – only when I live my life in You – am I stronger. I must be occupied – consumed even – with His presence in my life. Only He can see to the heart of my being. Only the light of his holiness can penetrate into the dark recesses of my soul, illuming things that do not belong. I am helpless, I am dependent upon You. But my salvation is found as I flee to You, as I cling to You and when I rest on You.

Lord, I wholly give myself over to You. There is nothing – absolutely nothing that I withhold. We don’t know how long we have, but I for one want to be ready. Ready to meet You if it is today. Ready to respond at a moment’s notice to Your beck and call. For only You know who will cross my path this day.

Spirit of the living God,
Fall fresh on me.
Melt me, mold me, fill me, use me
Spirit of the living God,
Fall fresh on me.
 ~ Daniel Iverson, 1926

Aug 29th, Mon, 5:51 am

God with Us

“Emmanuel” – God with us (Isaiah 7:14, Matthew 1:23)

“For ‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’

But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?”  Romans 10:13-14

Lord, when you came to earth You gave us a wonderful gift – You gave us the gift of Yourself. And that statement is not trivial or trite or shallow. It is deep with meaning. Giving Yourself to us means You held absolutely nothing back. You are not distant or unapproachable. You are loving and compassionate. You want to be a big part of our lives. You want to be with us through the joy and the sorrow.

We can experience snippets of this kind of relationship with spouses, close friends and family…possibly. And we are so benefited by those connections. But our relationship with You takes it to a whole other level! You are not inhibited by weakness or selfishness…or death. You are there for us every moment of our lives!

Your gift of Yourself also made it possible for us to have a relationship with You. Sin separated us but because of Your sacrifice sin is eradicated and we can now approach a hold God without fear or being eradicated ourselves – sin and holiness cannot mix!

Emmanuel…what a wonderful gift with such wonderful benefits! For as Paul stated in Romans 10:13, For ‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’” But as we continue reading in verse 14 we see that there is a problem.

“how can they call on him…unless they believe…and how can they believe… if they have never heard…and how can they hear…unless someone tells them?”

We cannot share the gift of Emmanuel until we give the gift of ourselves to others as well. Only when we invest ourselves in others will we be able to impact them.in many instances, only when they see Your love lived out through us will be convinced of its reality.

Lord, how many people do I see every day who are hurting, who are lonely, whose life has no meaning and they wander aimlessly with no direction whatsoever. Just this week I looked into the eye of a small child. I don’t really know his mother but I know of her and as far as I know dad is not in the picture. He said, “Hi,” as little ones will and even in that short amount of contact I could feel him reaching out to me. I may be reading a lot in to it but with that little phrase and those piercing eyes, he seemed to be asking, “Do you like me? Will you love me? Would you have time for me?”

How many people, Lord…how many do I see who long to ask those questions? But they hold back. They have been so shoved down for so long that they don’t even think to ask any more.

And, Lord, we both know that I cannot meet those needs…at least not for long. Life moves on…death is inevitable. But Lord, You are more than able to do so! Lord, give me the wisdom as how to “tell them” about You…to give them real hope in someone who is not inhibited but one who is all powerful…in someone who will always be with them…in someone who knows all about them but loves them anyway! Lord, help me to proclaim, “Emmanuel!”

Dec 24th, Thurs, 8:42 am