Tag Archives: 2 Chronicles

2020 VISION: Short, Sweet #8

I’ve been thinking a lot about prayer today.  After all, that is what these next few days leading up to Yom Kippur are all about. Introspection, seeking, and repentance. 

“I have poured out my soul before the LORD…all this time I have been praying out of the depth of my anguish and grief.” 1 Sam 1:15b-16

Hannah’s first prayer seems to be my prayer so often lately. I wonder what My Father thinks of me sometimes, when my tears drown out my voice, and anger blots out coherent thought. And yet…and yet –  –  – I know He hears and His compassion never fails.

S    F   T

I saw this in a movie a few years ago, and it pretty much describes my prayer journey of the past couple years.  

S – eek Him

F – eel His presence

T – rust Him

  High Holy Days 2020 is touching me in different ways this year.  Prayer is primary, but more encompassing than ever before. Prayers not just for me and mine, but circling for our country as well.  Prayers circling for all the birth pangs that we have seen this year – pestilence, droughts, wildfires, anger, earthquakes, hurricanes/fire tornadoes, infestations, lawlessness, rebellion (personal and societal)….. 

The list seems endless, but as always, I continue to…S F L. And like Hannah, I know He hears and covers me as He does the world and this country with His compassion, love and grace.

“My heart rejoices in the LORD in whom my strength is exalted. My mouth speaks boldly against my enemies, for I rejoice in Your salvation.” 1 Sam 2:2

The Prayer marches in Washington DC are only 7 days away. The Vine and the Branch together in prayer. A national day, during the Jewish High Holy Days, to find our knees, repent as a people and S F L as a people.  If you can’t be there, there are multiple ways to join together digitally. If you don’t want to watch, pray. After all, we already have his promise…  

“If I close the sky so there is no rain, or if I command the locust to devour the land, or if I send a plague among My people, and if My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, forgive their sin and heal their land.” 2 Chron 7:13-14

PANDEMIC VISION 2020: What Is Truth?

“What is truth?” retorted Pilate.” Jn 18:38

I haven’t written for a while. Well – that’s not entirely true. I’ve been writing. Just not writing for FB and blogging friends. This time of isolation really has been a time of introspection and thoughtful contemplation – both personally and collectively. It is as if Yahweh has “showed up and showed off”, as Mama or Dada used to say.

I’ve re-visited some of my favorite authors (the ones that I couldn’t bare to part with when I pared my OH library down to six crammed-to-the-brim shelves) and poets. I’ve written some new stuff, but mostly, re-visited some old writings that needed some serious tooling and up-dating.

Mostly though, I’ve spent a lot of hours in the WORD – in prayer – in breathing in: YAH and breathing out: WEH. Sitting in the sun while throwing the ball for the lab girls to fight over. Walking in the woods and watching the way the early morning light filters through the trees. Moving a load of mulch to help some plants that just weren’t happy where they were as I watch small critters crawl out of my way. Wondering, What is truth?”

In the age of deep fakes, scientists stating and re-stating facts and others stating and re-stating similar facts as they see it. It is hard to know whom to believe – or what to believe. For me, it always comes back to one thing – – – the Breath of Yahweh.

The other day, someone wondered why I used the word Yeshua instead of Jesus. I have been pondering that ever since. I wanted to say because it is natural and right somewhere inside of me when I do so. That lead me down another rabbit hole. Why do I refer to God as anything other than Yahweh?

Yes, GOD is our Abba Father, He is God, but He said His name was YHWH – Yahweh. “I AM that I AM”. I like to be called by my name – even though I have been called Teacher, Wife, Mother, Sister, Brynie. I am all those things, but mostly, I am as my parents named me – Bryn. And, while I value all those other names, I love hearing my name whispered in the mouths and prayers of others.

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,
and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.”Prov 9:10

Facts are dubious in today’s world. Scientist vs scientist. Historian vs historian. Politician vs politician. I have even heard mathematicians finding issue with each other. The chaos of their words slam my ears, and my brain is inundated with their discordant noise. Facts and knowledge are always in flux. Easily twisted towards a bias or by new revelations of observable nature.

As I have listened, read and prayed in this time of isolation, I continue to come back to the One source that has never broken a covenant with me – even though I have broken ones with Him.
The One who never ignored my copious tears. The One who held me when my parents died. The One who cried with me in the middle of my sinful choices. The One who continues to set my feet upon the rock higher than. The One who lights my darkness and gives me grace.

YAHWEH: I AM that causes.
YESHUA: I AM that saves.
YHWH RUACH: I AM that breathes.

“What is Truth?”

Pilot’s words have echoed in my head over and over the past few weeks. Pilot turned away after he asked this question. He washed his hands of it – just like many of us do in similar situations. He, too, lived in a world full of contradictions and/or opinions. Facts twisted one way and then twisted another. Each faction strongly holding their own counsel when the answer stood in front of all of them and they saw it – or heard it – not.

“For this reason I was born and have come into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to My voice.”– Jn 18:37

I have no answer to which side holds the wisdom of all the controversies are swirling around us right now. But – I do know for certain WHO holds that wisdom and will give it freely to all who want it. Just like Solomon, all we have to do is ask. I also know that when I choose a course of action and feel the “Peace that passeth all understanding” as I walk forward – – – I know that the the Trinity of Truth is lighting up whatever darkness I may encounter in front of me. There is only one Truth, and it set me free to listen for His voice – His breath – His cause.

As all these cliff edges threaten to give way under our collective feet, I can’t think of a better time for a National Day of Prayer to happen. Tomorrow will be a time of fasting and prayer for me as I strain to listen to His whisper and seek His face in this stormy time of life. Our country has found its knees in time of crisis before; I think we need to find them again.

“I have heard your prayer and have chosen this place for Myself as a house of sacrifice. If I close the sky so there is no rain, or if I command the locust to devour the land, or if I send a plague among My people, and if My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, forgive their sin, and heal their land.” 2 Chron 7:12b-14 

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VISION 2020: Pandemic Basket Blessings

When I wake up these days, I am full of thankful blessings. Thankful to open my eyes. Thankful to see my choc labs wiggling at my bedside. Thankful to hear kitty-kitty meowing from wherever she is curled up to sleep. Thankful for the first deep breath in – Yaw – followed by the first deep breath out –
Weh. Thankful for My Father who whispers: ‘Kneel”.

“During the days of King David, a devastating plague is said to have claimed the lives of a hundred Israelites every single day. That’s when a council of Jewish rabbis prescribed the practice of reciting one hundred blessings per day to counteract the plague. According to tradition, the plague stopped immediately. I can’t promise that gratitude will cure whatever ails you (or stop the Coronavirus), but gratitude is a good place to start. And it’s where the double blessing begins.” Mark Batterson, author of the Circle Maker, Whispers

This devotion caught me this morning. I laughed. It is so obvious. When I start my day – pause throughout the day – end my day – thanking my Father, the next day radiates His peace in all I do. Even when a pandemic strikes and isolates me from my Grands and students (and cuts my gym time in half), Joy seems to pour out of me and His peace envelops me.

“Shout with joy to the LORD, all the earth!
Worship the LORD with gladness.
Come before him, singing with joy.” Ps 100:1-2

After reading Batterson’s quote, I began to fill my head with all the blessings of the day. There are way more than a hundred. I started writing them down and was at 10 before I got out of the bathroom. Then I began to wonder how many more blessings I missed. The flock of robins in my yard. The music of all the spring birds over my head. The wide array of colors in spring flowers. Tree pollen that swells my sinuses. Essential oils that make it tolerable. The taste of food. The smells of spring.

Where do I stop?

Life is a miracle basket – a basket overflowing with blessings. Basket Blessings – too many to count – Basket Blessings from a loving Father and Son who know all too well the agony and the chaos of this world. Basket Blessings that should bring us to our knees throughout the day. Basket Blessings that fill me with joy even when I dislike the dark valley that is hard to navigate with these old eyes and crackling knees.

“Acknowledge that the LORD is God!
He made us, and we are his.a
We are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving;
go into his courts with praise.
Give thanks to him and praise his name.” Ps 100:3-4

Raise your hands in the air. Yup – do it. Right now. Start circling your hands in concentric circles and repeat this phrase: “He is turning my mourning into dancing and my sorrow into joy.”
Go on…….
Repeat.
Repeat.
Repeat.
Are your feet tapping? Is your soul dancing? Go ahead. I know you want to do so.
Dance.
Dance.
Dance.
And place your Basket Blessings on the holy ground where you check in with Our Father. He’s waiting. Waiting just for you to just acknowledge what He has given you.

A Basket of Blessings He designed just for you.

“Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.” 2 Chron 7:14

“For the LORD is good.
His unfailing love continues forever,
and his faithfulness continues to each generation.” Ps 100:5  first day in Heaven [Kerolos Safwat art]

BOOM

So let’s re-cap what happened in the last 24 hour period before I fall asleep.

BOOM!

A car was hit by a big, ol’ truck (whose brakes failed) which forced the truck to burst through a wall of a new school. august 13 2018k

Emergency workers gathered.

Traffic backed up.

Neighbors – teachers – preachers – ordinary people – all gathered in small groups in the parking lot to watch, to talk and to pray.

Officials also gathered, and bright yellow signs of 
“condemnation” were hung.

“If my people, who are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”~2 Chron 4:14

Engineers. Construction workers. Landscapers appeared on the scene.

august 14 2018 jPlans sketched and approved.

A car driver – still a little broken – was discharged from the hospital to heal at home.

Late into the night the people were still there.

Clearing. Building. Salvaging. Praying. Yawning.

While the uninjured-but-shaken truck driver sat in a school plastic chair under a tree on the lawn, keeping watch over his truck, people sought him out. They brought with them what comfort they had to offer. august 14 2018 e
Food. 
Small talk. 
Prayer. 
GRACE. 
Last night, the truck driver accepted Christ into his heart and the Shepherd found one of His own in the dark of an overcast sky.

By the time the sun’s rays pierced the final vestiges of the twilight, all the “condemnation” signs were gone except for one tiny wing that would take just a little longer to mend before it could fly again.

And BOOM!!!

Just like the initial one that started last night’s wave of destruction another BOOM rocked this building. That is the way miracles sometimes work on this barren plot of ground that we call life. A Father’s finger pokes into the dark dirt of our lives to allow His GRACE to grow something new. Sometimes that poke becomes a stick of dynamite – AND BOOM!

Then the Son plants a seed – perhaps the size of a mustard seed – in the heart of a pastor – who in turn plants it in the hearts of his elders – who in turn plant it in the hearts of some educators – who in turn plant it – tonight – in the hearts of families and students who attended the first GCA Open House.

And tomorrow?

GRACE Christian Academy will open its doors – on time – for the first day of school. Papa God is like that. He is faithful in all His promises for those who work together, humble themselves and pray. Praying through the darkness. “Be-attitudes” in action – on earth as it is in Heaven while the Shepherd smiles and the Holy Spirit breathes in our ears.

“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.”~Jn 1:14

Great is His Faithfulness! [personal images]GCA_HD_Logo-01

GOLDEN CALVES 2017

“Alas, institutions often become idolatrous in their efforts to protect and preserve themselves. Institutions do not like being vulnerable.”~Madeleine L’Engle “Penguins & Golden Calves

Just an interesting thought on this 3rd day of January 2017. Pondering all the institutions that surround us in our daily walk and potential institutions as AI looms closer. Google that silently waits, listens, records (?) for the voice to call out a search command. Political parties that continually seek ways to destroy other political parties. Business, church, banking, technology, sameness…the list is endless. L’Engle compared it to the religious institution that killed a man named Rabbi Yeshua who threatened the status quo.

Institutions are comforting. Humans like them because they tend make everyday life easier. After all – paving new roads is, generally, hard work. But – Institutions are driven by people – some seeking to help – some seeking power. Man-made institutions. Even God-made institutions – headed up by people – changed – because that’s just what humans do. We build towers. We raise our fists continuously challenging the One who Loves us best – His Son by His side – Grace in His left hand – Blessings in His right – Lighting a path to walk beyond the institutions – Eternal Hope – World without end – Amen and amen.

Always interesting to ponder things you discover in daily devotions.

Jehoshaphat’s prayer: “For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you.”~2 Chron 20:12

#sinissinissin #Godismoving

RATIONS 100 DAYS! #50

We are half-way through this little booklet of Rations. Hard to believe it has passed so quickly. The booklet is getting a little more beat up as the journey continues. Opening easily now to the last page I read, its binding is jut as solid as it was in 1945 when my father received it and carried it to China.
The evil that took my dad to the other side of the globe continues to shake the world today. Many men and women sacrifice their own lives and desires to travel half way around the world. Others sacrifice their own lives and desires to serve in their own cities and towns. Fighting evil is a constant in our world – everywhere. But just like then, God’s promises continue to shine, lighting a road where there was no road, and reminding us that although evil seems to be rampant and undeniably strong, He is greater.
Almost a month ago, I discovered the prayer of Jehoshaphat in 2 Chronicles. ‘Jehoshaphat was afraid.’ As I read more deeply those OT stories, the more I appreciate the humanness of each one. They were like us. They were afraid of the evil and struggling to understand this “God of Abraham”. Jehoshaphat called for a day of prayer and fasting throughout all of Judah. His people came from far and wide to join him as he prayed: “For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you.”~2 Chronicles 20:12.
In America during every time of war, there have always been calls by people of faith for fasting and prayers. In 1942 it was called America’s Prayer Minute. Today it continues under various leaderships. People of faith remind us that Christ and His Father hear and rejoice when we open the door to Them. What miracles await when we humble ourselves and seek Their face.
1942 Daily Ration:
Read: Matthew 12:31-37
‘The good man out of his good treasure bringeth forth good things; and the evil an out of his evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.’~Matthew 12:35
“Not one of us can for very long keep a mask of piety and good will over the abundance of impiety and ill will within us. The minute we are off guard our mask falls off and there we stand naked.
“All of us have had the experience of realizing that on this or that occasion we have let down our guard and have been seen or heard for what we really are. We have known them, too, that the pity of it all is that we should have ever had the need of the mask in the first place, or that we could ever have imagined that in having the mask we could be a genuine friend, brother, or father.
“Christ’s coming into the world meant that a new note was struck in the life of mankind. He came and met mankind in order that we might all have the ‘Kingdom Heart’.

Prayer: ‘Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within e. Cast me not away from they presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold e with thy free spirit.’ Amen. “

BLESSING TRIAD #13-15

12227650_10153846624651320_8539315362822057837_nThe Thirteenth Blessing

The Lord said, “What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground.” Gen 4:10

Today, November 13, 2015, and I – I am thankful. Thankful that I have read the last page of the WORD. Thankful that Our Father sees and weeps over Paris tonight. Thankful that Chirst walked this same terror-filled path to bruise the head of the evil one.
While the cloak of darkness swirls around this foreign city whose streets I walked long ago. Parisians huddle in their homes. Borders closed. Travel curtailed. Lights darkened. A state of emergency declared

Submerged shadows silhouetted within sadness, suspicion, sorrow, stigma’s scars.

The good news?

Submerged shadows always surrender to sacred sword of salvation held within Son’s light.

12193871_1654218544836987_7021168084671431001_nAll they need to do is remember. Remember to seek the Son’s Light. Remember to throw open the church doors and get down on their knees. Afterall, this is the home to many people who have read the end of Our Father’s book as well. They know that the outcome of a battle is not the outcome of the war.This is the home of the French Resistance where cells of strong liberty loving men and women changed the course of WWII with their resilience and strength of conviction. They stood on the Rock, and hopefully, will do so again.

Tonight I have added the people of Paris and France to my ever growing list as I watch the Son’s Light grow.The Light Who doesn’t wait for morning to come. The Light that shows the ugliness of evil and lights the way back to the Garden. I am praying they remember to seek the Son’s Light as they go forward in the next few days.
Blessings!Be!

The Fourteenth Blessing1476480_10201044455582450_1754701491_n

No matter how black, dirty, shameful, or terrible our sin, God will forgive. We may be at the very gate of Hell itself, but He will be reaching out in everlasting love.” Rev. Billy Graham p 95 “Where I Am”

Today has been a thoughtful day – a prayful day. As shocking as it is to see the statistics or images of Paris flashing across our screens, my mind kept returning to the attacks that have been going on in Israel, the downing of a Russian plane, or the bombings in Lebanon – not to mention all the murders that have been happening daily in our own country. Ever look at the stats of murdered people in the USA on a daily basis?

I changed my cover and profile pictures away from France because this is not about one country. It is about our world. A world lost and spinning erratically – morally – truthfully – spiritually.

Last night, before I heard the news of Paris, I pulled out my battery operated window candles. I love them because they automatically come on at dusk and turn off at dawn. I put these up about this time every Christmas. Their flickering lights welcome me home on those rare nights I am coming home after dark. Usually their small light is enough to keep me happy until I finally get to decorate for Christmas (yea).

This morning, however, it was not enough. Putting on my coat and shoes, I dug through the piles of boxes in our now over-stuffed-getting-ready-to-move shed until I found the box I needed. Gently, I pulled the Millennial Creche out of its hiding place. It is the last nativity set my mother bought for me right before Y2K. We had this thing of giving each other nativity sets. I gave her a small white plastic set my first year of teaching. She brought me a set of olive wood ones from Israel. One year, the kids and I gave her one that we had hand-painted from plaster casts. When she gave me the Y2K creche by the Roman company, it became the special one because it was her last gift to me.

Today, I needed to see the visual of that promise – a promise made so long ago – a promise of mercy and salvation.

Flag_of_Israel.svgOur world needs that promise more than ever. We have watched our world become smaller and smaller. Talk of global businesses, currency, governments float through our consciousness without much thought. Last night the talk was of global murder. Flag_of_Lebanon.svgDepending on the media presentation – some terror attacks we hear little-to-nothing about – others attacks are all over mainstay media and social media. How many FB profiles do you see that are the blue/white Star of David or the red/white Fir tree flags (I could have mentioned Russia’s flag but it is the same as France but with horizontal strips instead)?

Today, November 14, 2015, I am thankful for the creche that sits in my cabinet. Itmillenial creche 2015 reminds me of Our Father’s promise, and our world needs to remember the promise born in a tiny manger long ago. Our world needs to remember that no matter how ugly we act or how warped our thinking may be, Our Father has already shown us a path that will lead us back to the Garden. He gave us His own Son’s Light to guide us on our journey. He waits for us to remember our promises.

“Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.”~Is 55:7

The Fifteenth Blessing

November 15, 2015, I am THANKFUL. Thankfut for God’s blessings too numerable to mention. Thankful for Our Father’s unending promises. Thankful that prayer gives me a chance to talk with Him. Thankful for His holy day of rest. Thankful for His Son’s sacrifice and resurrection. Thankful for the Holy Spirit’s discerning voice in my life.

And ——–

thankful that that I found this video –

OKAY –

Are you ready?

NEWSIES fans – here we go. I’m still smilin’ and am ready to listen to it again. Hmmmm…I really, really miss singing acapella – although I still like mixed voices best. After the past couple of days, we do need to “Seize the Day”.

[Google images]