Grace and Truth

…all the words of this life…


Leave a comment

Roll Upon the Lord Thy Way

“Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him and He shall bring it to pass” Psalm 37:5

The word “commit” here literally means to “roll off or away”.

It is applied in this instance to things that are “a) round, globular or rolling, such as a wheel or dung” and “b) heavy – such as would be rolled and not carried ,ie a large stone”. (Strong’s concordance)

It is the same word that is used in Joshua 5:9

“Then the Lord said to Joshua ‘This day I have rolled away the reproach of Egypt from you.’”

So when Psalm 37:5 says to “Commit your way to the Lord” it is literally saying to “roll upon Jehovah thy way”.

In the Hebrew it is not just to roll off your burdens, but to roll them off onto another, to transfer them.

When we have a burden, a fear or a difficult situation the Word of God tells us to roll it off onto the Lord.

Let us commit all our concerns to God, entrusting them to Him, our loving Heavenly Father, knowing that He is working together all things for the good for us.

Blessings!

Belinda 🙂

Advertisements


9 Comments

Missionary Quotations: Leonard Ravenhill6

leonardravenhill“Not many Christians today can forget the fact that the devil goeth about as a roaring lion, but we seem to

The Lion of the Tribe of Judah

The Lion of the Tribe of Judah, watercolour/pencil

have lost sight of the fact that the Lion of the tribe of Judah has defeated the roaring lion of hell, and therefore every anointed Samson or Gideon or church can also slay the lion of hell. Though wicked men are doing wickedly, God’s promise to us is that “the people that do know their God shall be strong and do exploits” (Daniel 11:32).”

Today’s Sleeping Giant, Leonard Ravenhill


16 Comments

Jesus I love You, But Not Your Word

This is what I said to Jesus.life

Many times I said it. Even though I had always read the Bible, even from a young child. I read it a lot. I memorized verses even. I believed it was truth, I believed it was the Word of God. And over and over God used His Word to teach me and to speak to me.

But I didn’t love it.

I certainly didn’t desire to read it or look forward to reading it. I did it because I knew it was the “right” thing to do.

Then one day I watched that old “Jesus” movie…. In it Jesus picks up the scroll of the Old Testament in the Temple preparing to read from it. But before he reads Isaiah 61 he kisses the scroll. That simple act convicted me.

I blurted to the Lord in almost desperation: “Jesus, I love You, but I don’t love Your Word. Not like that.”

I knew I loved Jesus. I loved Him with my whole heart and soul and mind and strength. I could see that “in the volume of the book it is written of Him”, I knew that Jesus is the Word made flesh. And it didn’t make sense to me. If He really is the Word made into human flesh, and if I really loved Him, how could I not love His Word as well?

Well of course there was nothing I could do about it. I couldn’t make myself love it nor desire it.

Actually, there was one thing I could do – and that was to be honest with Him about it.

So I was. I just kept telling the Lord what was in my heart.

“Lord I love You but I don’t love Your Word.”

Then gradually my prayers began to change : “Lord, give me a love for your Word. Make it real to me.”

It took some time, but one day I realized that I could honestly say that I now loved His Word.  And I still do. I LOVE it. I desire to read it. I can’t wait to find more treasures in it. I can’t wait to discover my Jesus concealed in the pages of the Old Testament and find His beauty and grace revealed in the New Testament. I love reading the apostles revelations and teachings in the epistles. I often cry as I read it now, I am so blessed with this wonderful, old Book. There is nothing like it.

So what’s the difference now? The Book certainly hasn’t changed.

No, the difference is that now the Holy Spirit is bringing life where before there was death.

This principle is true not only with reading the Word of God, but with everything in the Christian life – doctrine, preaching, church meetings, worship, fellowship, prayer, giving to the poor… it can all be dry and lifeless. It may all be cold, dead duty, ritual or tradition with no life in it if it’s done in the power of the flesh.

Without the Spirit of life breathing His life into something, anything, there is in fact, a ministration of death. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth, so when He is in something – whether it is prayer, reading the Word, preaching- there is reality there. There is Life. It rings true to us, it ministers life to us and we are changed by it.

A long, eloquent prayer may bring death…. If there’s no anointing of the Spirit.

A sermon with all the right doctrine may minister death to the hearers…. If it’s not infused with the life of the Spirit.

The ministry of the Holy Spirit is not an added bonus or extra in the life of a believer – His ministry of Life is essential. As Watchman Nee said “We either minister life or death. There’s nothing in between.”

Let us pray for the reality of the life of the Holy Spirit in every part of our lives, worship and ministries.

God bless you!


6 Comments

The Power of Praise

thIt was 3am. My three year-old son, Tom, had been coughing without reprieve for 8 solid hours.  The cough was deep and contained a strange rattling sound.  With each cough my heart was torn.  He had double pneumonia, croup, bronchitis and asthma all at once.

I had been praying, weeping, crying out to God for those 8 hours “Have mercy on my son Lord!”  At 3am I left my husband at Tom’s bedside and went to “get serious” with God.  I knelt down and prayed.

Immediately He said to me “No.  Praise Me.”

That was the last thing I felt like doing!  I was exhausted, heart-broken, anxious.  But it was a definite and clear command from the Lord, so I stood up and sang :

“Oh Lamb of God, sweet Lamb of God

I love the Holy Lamb of God

Oh wash me in His precious blood,

My Jesus Christ the Lamb of God!”

As I sang I saw the outline of a Man in front of me in the darkness and Tom’s coughing immediately stopped.  We slept soundly the rest of the night.

One thing I have learnt is that there is power in praise.

“Praise the Lord!

Praise the Lord from the heavens!

Praise Him in the heights!

Praise Him all His angels;

Praise Him all His hosts!” Psalm 148:1, 2

 

Praise brings victoryjoyful4.jpg

Powerful enemies were coming against Israel (2 Chronicles 20).  Jehosophat and the people didn’t know what to do.  He proclaimed a fast and they cried out to God.  God told them not to fear, that they would not have to even fight – the battle was His not theirs.  By faith in God’s Word they sang and praised the Lord and the enemy was defeated:

“Early in the morning they left for the Desert of Tekoa. As they set out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Listen to me, Judah and people of Jerusalem! Have faith in the Lord your God and you will be upheld; have faith in his prophets and you will be successful.” 21 After consulting the people, Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the Lord and to praise him for the splendor of his[c] holiness as they went out at the head of the army, saying:

“Give thanks to the Lord,     for his love endures forever.”

22 As they began to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushes against the men of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir who were invading Judah, and they were defeated.”

This morning I was feeling discouraged and defeated myself in some of the areas my husband and I have been called to minister in.  But we decided to sing.  We sang that old chorus :

“Be strong and of good courage

Be not afraid neither be dismayed…

For the Lord thy God is with thee

Whereever you go…”

This afternoon I got a phone call – there has been victory in the very area I had felt discouraged over this morning!  Praise the Lord!

 

Praise is a powerful weapon in the Christian’s arsenal.

“Let the saints be joyful in glory: let them sing aloud upon their beds.  Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two-edged sword in their hand;….To bind their kings with chains, and their nobles with fetters of iron;” Psalm 149

The Holy Spirit has given me two dreams lately about the power of praise.  In both dreams I have come face to face with the devil and found that they only way to stand and to defeat him is through worshipping and praising the Lord Jesus Christ. I’ve sung and asked others to sing with me, anointed songs of the blood of the Lamb and the cross – and the enemy has been bound and defeated.

I saw this actually happen a couple of weeks ago in our women’s prayer group.  As we praised the Lord the anointing of the Spirit fell down upon us.  His power came so strongly upon us that we could not do much at all but shake and cry.  From that moment in each of the lives of those whom were present there has been victory in our lives in different areas.

 

Praise magnifies the Lord

“O magnify the LORD with me, And let us exalt His name together.” Psalm 34:3

When we exalt the Lord in praise He is magnified.  We see Him for who He truly is – He is great, He is mighty, He is powerful.  He is the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords.  He is not some dumb idol made with man’s hands! God cannot remain small in our eyes when we praise Him.  Suddenly our faith increases as we see the Lord for who He truly is and we know that NOTHING Is impossible.

 

Praise lifts our eyes from ourselves up to Him

“I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.

My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.” Psalm 121:1-3

When we praise the Lord we stop focusing on ourselves and our problems and focus on Him.  We “set our minds on things above, not on things below” and we are lifted in faith.  Truly the atmosphere of heaven is brought down to earth in praise of our Lord, we enter His presence and that is when our prayers are answered and our help comes.

 

Praise is a sacrifice

Praise is something we can offer to the Lord Jesus for all that He has done for us.  We can never praise Him enough for Who He is and for what He has done but we can offer Him the fruit of our lips.  Praise is a sacrifice of our time, of our pride, of even our own feelings and emotions.

“By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name….for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.” Hebrews 13:15, 16

 

Praise breaks bondages

Paul and Silas were in prison, bound and chained for the sake of the gospel.  Sometimes we are too, persecuted, hurt by man’s words, bound by rejection and fear.

“Who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks.   And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.  And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one’s bands were loosed.” Acts 16:24-26

The thing about praise is that it sets captives free.  When we praise we are set free from bondage.  And the amazing thing is, those who are around us are also set free.

 

“I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.

My soul shall make her boast in the Lord: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad.

O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together.” Psalm 34:1-3


2 Comments

Where’s The Fire?

This week I have experienced my first 46 degree (Celsius) day.  (I am in no hurry to experience another.)

On Thursday I was in Adelaide, and on Thursday Adelaide was officially the hottest city on earth.  It was so hot that as soon as I stepped outside my skin felt like it was burning, even in the shade. The hotel we stayed in became uncomfortable as the air conditioning struggled to cope with four consecutive days of over 40 degrees.

Extreme heat and a thirsty land are, of course, a recipe for bush fire in Australia, and, as of this morning, 100 bush fires were burning across South Australia and Victoria.  The smoke from the fires drifted over the beach where we were bathing, initiating many questions from our children.   As my husband and I tried to downplay the severity of the fires to them, internally we were wondering whether we’d even be able to get home, as the main road into Victoria had been closed by the authorities.

bushfire3

With all this talk of fire it has got me to thinking about the Holy Spirit, or Holy Ghost.  In the Bible the Holy Ghost is both symbolized by fire, and also directly referred to as fire.  In the Old Testament the pillar of fire which the Israelites followed in the wilderness was the Holy Ghost.  In the New Testament John the Baptist said of Jesus:

“I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire” Matthew 3:11

And then in Acts 2:2-4 :

“. . . suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one set upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance”

The thing about fire is that it is HOT.  It is intense.  All it takes is one little spark and a wild bushfire is ignited in a dry and thirsty land.

bushfire

Leonard Ravenhill said : “Again, the symbol of the church is fire…..The cross is no symbol of Christianity. The symbol of Christianity is the tongue of fire that sat on the head of each of them….Our God is a consuming fire.”

Oh and we are in a dry and thirsty land here in Australia.  Not just physically, but more so spiritually.  As I sat on the balcony of our accommodation each night this week, I wept for the people, for my country.  Yes, I could hear them drinking and laughing and singing drunken songs and I wept for them, for their state of barren-ness.  It is oh so dry.

We went into the city of Adelaide last night and there were two old men there, handing out tracts and preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ. They’ve been there for 30 years.  One of them preached, standing there shaking, in the early stages of Parkinson’s disease, and we helped them to hand out the tracts to passers-by, but hardly anyone took one.  As he preached, warning that there is an eternal hell, I could tell his heart was broken for this people, these people walking past him laughing at him, smiling with the smile of those in the presence of a fool.  Afterwards I commented on the hardness of people’s hearts and he answered sadly: “Oh aren’t they?  They don’t understand that the consequences are eternal.”

How dry! How barren and hard is the landscape here in Australia!

But also how ripe and ready this land is for fire….. After all – the drier the land, the easier a fire is kindled.  And a fire is powerful enough to change a landscape.  Australia is a land of fire; but may we become a land of Holy Ghost fire!

All it takes is one spark.  As followers of Jesus Christ, because He lives within us, we are to be that spark to a dry and barren world.  But we cannot be that spark if we are not full of the fire of the Holy Ghost.

Paul says to: “…. be filled with the Spirit, speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord” Ephesians 5:18,19.  We need to be filled with the Holy Spirit and fire.  This verse in the original actually says:  “Be being filled with the Spirit…”  It is a continual process. Like in the Pilgrim’s Progress, there needs to be oil constantly poured onto the fire to keep it burning, because, just as surely, the devil is always seeking to put it out.

I love Leviticus 6:12:  “The fire on the altar must be kept burning; it must not go out. Every morning the priest is to add firewood and arrange the burnt offering on the fire and burn the fat of the fellowship offerings on it.” (Emphasis mine).  This verse is such a wonderful picture of what the life of the believer, of Christ’s church, should be.  No, it’s what we need to be.  We have a responsibility to this generation as the church of Jesus to carry this fire wherever we go.  If we don’t, who will?

bushfire 2

As priests we are to keep the fire burning.  God sends the divine fire, but it is our responsibility to keep it burning.  Just like a bushfire, once it has started it requires ongoing fuel.

I don’t know about you but I know when the fire is burning bright within me and I also know when it is burning low.  When I am full of the Spirit I walk in the supernatural – amazing things happen.  When the fire is low I find I am walking more in the flesh than the Spirit and the things of God become a struggle.

Wesley wrote a hymn, which goes like this:

    See how a great a flame aspires, kindled by a spark of grace.     Jesus love the nations fires; sets the kingdoms all ablaze.

To bring fire on earth He came, kindled in some hearts it is.     Oh that all might catch the flame; all partake the glorious bliss.

When He first the work began, small and feeble was its flame.     Now the word doeth swiftly run; now it wins its widening way.

More and more it spreads and grows, ever mighty to prevail.   Sin’s strongholds it now o’throws and shakes the trembling gates of hell.

Sons of God, your Savior praise; He the door hath opened wide.   He hath given the word of grace; Jesus’ word is glorified.

Saw you not the cloud arise, little as a human hand?   Now it spreads along the skies, hangs o’er all the thirsty land.

May you be inspired to be the spark of Holy Ghost fire in your land in this dry and thirsty generation!