Unpack That Verse… Habakkuk 2:14 The Covering of the LORD

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“For the earth will be filled With the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, As the waters cover the sea.  Habakkuk 2:14 (NASB)

As I looked out into the sky this morning, I saw how the clouds were resting on the mountains. They laid, ever so softly, on the tops of the mountains as if to cover them…protect them even.

It was beautiful to look at, peaceful and comforting.

As I reflected more, I began to think of how God covers us. I began to search for verses where God covered His children. Habakkuk 2:14 was one that I found and it resonated with me.

This verse likens the covering of God to His Glory. Not only that, His glory is revealed in our knowledge of Him and it will be as vast as the waters of the sea. What an incredible picture!

We have yet another example of knowing God and as we know Him more, we truly KNOW Him. We will come to know HIs Glory… His Presence… we will be covered by HIM! AND… it will be as big as the waters that cover the sea!!!!

WOW!

Often when I feel the presence of the Father, it is like a covering, a warm and cozy blanket that HE places over me. It is such an awesome feeling!

I LOVE to be covered by God!

I hope you have had this experience. If not, it is possible. In fact, the Lord is probably just waiting for you to come to Him so He can cover you. Go to Him now, quickly, and let Him cover you with His LOVE!!!

GOD doesn’t want something from us, HE simply wants us!  -C.S. Lewis

Unpack That Verse… John 17:23 What is Your Energy Source?

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Just as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, So they might be one heart and mind with Us.
Then the world might believe that You, in fact, sent Me. John 17:23  (MSG)

An energy source is something that gives you power, it recharges you, it enables you to keep going. This can be all sorts of things. If I compare it to an inanimate object I quickly think of a power cord that plugs into an outlet of some sort. We plug into the cord and we are charged!

What would happen if Jesus were your power cord and the Father was the outlet? You would plug into Jesus who is already plugged into the Father and VOILA… POWER!!!

That is so awesome to think about!

God is our power source. But the key is the connection… Jesus is the connector, He is the power cord connected to the power source, the Father. What verse does that make you think of? There might be a few that would adequately represent this picture, though the one that stood out to me almost immediately was from John 17. In this section of scripture there are actually a few verses where Jesus is talking about how the Father sent Him and has given Him the glory to give to you and me and then essentially because the Father and Jesus are one and Jesus is in us, we are also in the Father. We are all connected!

The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; 23 I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me and have loved them, even as You have loved Me. 24 Father, I desire that they also, whom You have given Me, be with Me where I am, so that they may see My glory which You have given Me, for You loved Me before the foundation of the world.  John 17:22-24 (NASB)

Not only are we connected to the ultimate power source, it is a power source and a power connector where when we are attached to it, the world should know who we are. This connection should make us look different in ways that will be obvious to those around us.

Plugging in to God daily and even several times throughout the day is important. Why? It is the only way to remain charged in the Lord. You must be connected to Him in order to remain in Him. Once we are in Him, we look like Him and we carry what He has everywhere we go… we walk in His fullness and LOVE!

“If we give God service it must be because he gives us grace. We work for him because he works in us.” – Charles Spurgeon

Unpack That Verse…Philippians 4:6-7 No Worries

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Be anxious for nothing, but in prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7 (NKJV)

Feeling anxious is a very real thing. I battled anxiety for many years. The one very important thing I learned about anxiety is that I could beat it… with the help of Jesus.

I didn’t see clearly how anxiety was affecting me and my life until very recently. In fact, God revealed to me that this anxiety was actually rooted in fear. And that fear controlled me completely!

Through prayer and supplication, which means simply asking for, I was able to walk to the other side of this fear and break covenant with it. I had partnered with fear, anxiety, worry, you name it, for my entire life, but it was time to be free.

It is true, that once I partnered with God and allowed Him to walk me through this process of freeing me from my fear, peace settled on me, in me and around me.

It was truly amazing to me to see how different I saw things through my own eyes because of this freedom. I became alive, adventurous… fearless.

Once I gave my anxiety and worry, and essentially my fears to Jesus, my whole life began to change. One seemingly little gesture can be the last step into breakthrough and COMPLETE PEACE and FREEDOM!!!

So, in your moments when you feel anything but peace, cry out to Jesus, and ask Him to fill you with peace… then rest in the Father’s Presence as He covers you with the warmest, coziest “peace blanket” you have ever snuggled under! Trust me, you will never want to worry again!

Worry does not empty TOMORROW of its sorrows, it empties TODAY of its strength.            Corrie ten Bloom

Unpack That Verse… Psalm 104:22 Freedom in Praise

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Praise the Lord, everything He has created, everything in all His Kingdom. Let all that I am praise he Lord. Psalm 104:22 (NLT)

How many times have you woken up in the morning and just felt sad, unsure of the day, depressed even, and basically did not even want to get out of bed?

For me, that used to be an everyday occurrence. Now, not so much, but it still happens.

Yesterday was one of those days…

I never used to know how to get past the cloud that seemed to consume me. But, I would push through and get up anyway and somehow make it through the day, but I remember it being a struggle.

I have learned as of late, that praise will draw me out of that place and instead place me in the presence of the Lord.

In His presence I will find joy, peace and love…

All I have to do is come to the Father either by praying, reading scripture, listening to worship music, singing to Him… crying out to Him or all five things and He comes… He comes rushing in like the wind and fills me.

Yesterday ended up being one of the best days. I really enjoyed it, felt joy, peace and love. And, I felt powerful, because I conquered something that used to control me. Praising the Lord freed me from bondage to this cloud of sadness and depression.

So, the next time that that cloud tries to consume you… let all that you are praise Him who loves you!

 

Unpack That Verse… Psalm 119:162 The Greatest Treasure

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I rejoice at YOUR Word as one who finds great treasure.  Psalm 119:162 (NKJV)

I absolutely LOVE this verse! Reread it and then let it sink in for a moment…

The WORD of God is like a treasure. WOW! This is one of the Psalms that it is presumably written by David. It is stuck in between two verses where it talks about being persecuted and lying, but David continues to seek the word of the Lord and rejoice.

This only confirms the fact that His Word is calming and comforting. In the Bible, God speaks to us in the way that we need to be spoken to in the moment we are in. Make sense? More importantly though, IT, God’s Word, is a treasure… ALWAYS… each time we go to it… because it is inspired by Him who loves us!

The Message translation says it in this way…

I’m ecstatic over what you say, like one who strikes it rich.  Psalm 119:162 (MSG)

I think too often we are almost complacent when it comes to reading God’s Word. We must continually view it as a gift, a treasure, an amazing blessing. It is something we have access to which then gives us direct access to Jesus who leads us to the Father! It is only when we regard it as such that we are truly understanding it as the living word and not just a book with a bunch of stories. This WORD is living, both in the written Word and in the form of JESUS.

I challenge you today and every day from now on to look at what God says in His Word as something that is truly a treasure and believe you have “struck it rich”. Then, watch the Word literally JUMP off the page at you as you read… your heart will receive and you will never be the same! Be ecstatic… you have found the living WORD of God the Father!

The Bible is the cradle wherein Christ is laid.  Martin Luther

Unpack That Verse… Psalm 119:45 Walking in Freedom

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And I will walk at liberty, for I seek YOUR precepts.  Psalm 119:45 (NKJV)

God’s precepts are His Word… seeking His precepts are actually seeking Him. For, remember, His Word was made flesh through Jesus. Seeking Jesus is how we seek His precepts.

Through this seeking and then finding and because God is always there just waiting to spend time with us, well, we find freedom. Freedom, liberty in Him, in His Word, because that is where true freedom comes from.

Because I know you Jesus, in my heart, I know what it means to be free from slavery, free from sin… I know that You are with me, protecting me, guiding me, keeping me in liberty.

he presence of His Spirit is where true release and freedom are present. Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is freedom! (2 Corinthians 3:17)

If I soak in this truth it becomes a reality. Thinking back to many times in my life where I felt so stuck, cornered, in bondage and basically hopeless. As I prayed and let Holy Spirit do His “thing”, it all lifted like something that was weighing me down. The next impression was one of almost weightlessness… definitely free!!!

Learning to let go and let God be in control is the first step and often the most difficult one. Take that first step into freedom and the next steps will be ones like you have never experienced before!

We must be free not because we claim it, but because we practice it.  William Faulkner

Unpack That Verse… Friday, March 17, 2017

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By Your words I can see where I am going; they throw a beam of light on my path. Psalm 119:105 (MSG)

The Word of God guides us. It guides us the ways that are good, the ways they take us towards Him. As we draw closer to God, through His Word we know who His is, we learn about His nature.

It’s just like spending time with anyone who you have a relationship with, the more time you spend with that person, the better you know them.

God is someone who loves us… AND, someone who we love… so, in order to maintain a healthy relationship, we must spend time together.

Moreover, it cant just be one-sided, both parties must do their part. Essentially, I must put time and effort into my relationship with the Father. Not striving or performing, just spending time with Him.

The other gem that is hidden here is this… Jesus is the Word made flesh… WOAH!!!

So, as we know Jesus, we know the Father. And as we know the Word, we know the Father… it’s all connected!

As we understand what God is saying through Jesus, our eyes can see the path He has lit for us. A path that will lead us in the way of a loving Father.

It seems so simple… and it is.

I believe that there is light all around us, if we would only look. The Father is everywhere, and He is waiting for us to look to Him.

What are you waiting for?

Look to Jesus and then ask Him to light your path with His Father’s Words.

Always, everywhere God is present, and always He seeks to discover Himself to each one 
A.W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God   

 

Unpack That Verse… Thursday, March 16, 2017

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Here’s what I want you to do: Find a quiet, secluded place so you won’t be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace.                 Matthew 6:6 (MSG)

Hanging out with God is something that should be authentic and real. In other words, we don’t have to try and impress God, but rather just be ourselves.

As we are who we were created to be with our Creator, we become one with our Lord in His Presence.  To me that is the most amazing feeling ever!

Too often, as with many things in life, we try to perform for approval, acceptance, love… we even do it with God. We try to act more spiritual, or try to set up the “perfect” time with Him, or try to act like we are “doing it the right way”. The bummer is, we miss out on Him. When we try to do it a certain way, we totally lose sight of who our Father is.

God is found in many things, but He is definitely not found in things that are not true… after all He is TRUTH!

Let’s go forward in this thought…

Spending time with God doesn’t look like anything except what HE wants it to look like. So, begin by seeking the Father and then letting Him find you right where you are… and then sit back and enjoy His Presence!

“People seek for methods of learning to love God. They hope to arrive at it by I know not how many different practices; they take much trouble to remain in the presence of God in a quantity of ways. Is it not much shorter and more direct to do everything for the love of God, to make use of all the labors of one’s state in life to show Him that love, and to maintain His presence within us by this communion of our hearts with His? There is no finesse about it; one has only to do it generously and simply.”
Brother Lawrence, The Practice of the Presence of God