Thursday 7/18 ~ Waiting is Hard to do

The scripture for today, July 18 (7/18), is Acts 7:18 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

Road to Heaven-COVER-KINDLE-THUMBNAIL“Then another king, who knew nothing about Joseph, became ruler of Egypt.”

Does God really answer prayers? When the Jews first arrived in Egypt, they received “royal treatment” because they were relatives of “Prime Minister” Joseph. Then he died, but his Jewish relatives stayed. Eventually, they were resented because they were foreigners, then they were feared, then they were made slaves of the Egyptians.

For the following 400 years, the Jews prayed for God to release them from their slavery. Generation after generation died believing that God does not answer prayers.

But God saw the big picture. He saw that the 70 relatives of Joseph who originally went to Egypt would become more than three million over the next four centuries. Then and only then would they be large enough to begin a new nation ~ the Jewish nation. In Egypt during those centuries, they were in a form of “protective custody”.

Are you frustrated and confused because God is seemingly not answering some very important prayers? Perhaps you are part of a bigger picture that God only knows about. Perhaps your job is to stay where you are and just keep hanging on. Waiting is hard to do. Are you up to the task God has assigned you?

 

Road to Heaven-COVER-KINDLE-THUMBNAILTHE ROAD TO HEAVEN was begun in the Garden of Eden.  We blithely pray, “And forgive our sins. Amen.” It’s not that simple. It has never been that simple. It took God thousands of years to get our road to heaven built. Ah, but now that we are on that road, we look in anticipation toward our arrival in that glorious place called heaven. To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this: https://amzn.to/2JCvom6

 

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Friday 7/12 ~ And the stars sing together

The scripture for today, July 12 (7/12), is Revelation 7:12 in the New Testament of the Bible:

Silver Cover-KINDLE-thumbnail“Amen! Praise and glory and wisdom and thanks and honor and power and strength be to our God for ever and ever. Amen!”

How often do you praise God? Praise is more than thanking Him. Praise refers to God’s attributes.

Some people think God is ugly, He doesn’t understand them, He is against them. Some think God is a figment for weaklings. Some even hate God and are even repulsed at the idea of worshipping him.

How much they do not understand. There is a spirit world out there. Every day God runs after us, “Come this way. I will save you from a terrible fate. Come! I have wonderful plans for you. Come!  Together we will climb mountains, leap to the moon and soar through the stars of heaven. Come! See all the excitement I have planned for you.

Ah, yes, Lord!  I am coming.  Gladly I am coming. The mountains touch the clouds and declare your glory. The moon glows in praise of you. The stars sing together in anthems of your greatness, your magnitude, the divinity of your being. And I worship you.

 

Silver Cover-KINDLE-thumbnail365 SILVER-WINGED PRAYERS: YOUR SPIRIT TO GOD’S has a prayer of praise, a prayer of repentance, and a prayer of thanksgiving for your every day.  With these thoughts in your mind, you are now ready for your requests, be they for yourself or others in the world. To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this:  https://amzn.to/2GcvQVi

 

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Sunday 7/7 ~ Extra seeking and knocking

The scripture for today, July 7 (7/7), is Matthew 7:7 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

Silver Cover-KINDLE-thumbnail“Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”

How beautiful. The Creator of the universe pays attention to each and every one of us. How does he do it? How does he even sort us all out when thousands of us are praying to him at the same time?

But sometimes you may think he is not listening to your prayers. But it takes time to answer some of them. If I am praying to meet my future husband or wife, God may have to move him or her from the other side of the country, get a new job for him or her, and arrange for the two of you to “accidentally” bump into each other. This is just one example.

At other times you may ask for something like winning a ball game. When Jesus said whatever we seek will be given to you, he had already explained that you must “seek first his kingdom and his righteousness” (Matthew 6:33). So, within that context, God will give you your heart’s desire.

Maybe today you can do a little bit of extra seeking and extra knocking.

 

Silver Cover-KINDLE-thumbnailSILVER-WINGED PRAYERS: YOUR SPIRT TO GOD’S contains 365 prayers of praise, repentance, and thanksgiving. It is up to you to decide what to ask for, but I think after the other three parts, your requests will be a little bit you and a whole lot others.  To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this:  https://amzn.to/32fgoSL

 

 

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Wednesday 6/26 ~ I can tell you love me

The scripture for today, June 26 (6/26), is 1st Chronicles 6:26ff as found in the Old Testament of the Bible.

OldOldTunes-medium“Elkanah his son, Zophai his son, Nahath his son, Eliab his son, Jeroham his son, Elkanah his son and SAMUEL his son. The sons of Samuel: JOEL the firstborn and Abijah the second son.”

This is a little long, but I think you will enjoy it.

The prophet Samuel came from a musical family who descended from Levi’s son Kohath. Samuel’s son listed in this scripture was Joel. Verse 33 called the son of Joel and grandson of Samuel “Heman the musician”. Just what did Heman the musician do?

David told the Levites to appoint “singers to sing joyful songs, accompanied by musical instruments: lyres, harps and cymbals“. Heman was the first one they appointed (I Chronicles 15:16f) and he had two assistants ~ Asaph and Merari (I Chronicles. 6:39, 44). David put them in charge of the music in the house of the Lord and they performed their duties according to the regulations (verses 31f).

So what David appointed was a choir and orchestra.  When David first appointed them, Heman had 120 relatives in his clan, and his assistants had 220 and 130 in their clans (I Chronicles. 15:5-7; 19-22; 27-28) so they had a total of 470 musicians. Wow! And these musicians had a full-time job!

They were to minister before the Lord “according to each day’s requirements” of sacrifices as written in the Law of Moses. Heman and the others were responsible for sounding the trumpets and cymbals and playing the other instruments ~ lyres, harps and cymbals (15:19-21) ~ for sacred song (16:37-42). In addition to playing the prescribed lyres, harps and cymbals, trumpets were to be sounded to announce sacrifices, etc. (16:4-6).

By the time David was old, there were “four thousand…to praise the Lord with the musical instruments” (I Chronicles 23:5)! What an amazing choir and orchestra they had by this time! Remember, they were all male Levites, and were to help Aaron’s descendants, the priests, in the temple every day and at special feasts (verse 28, 30f). And what instruments were they still playing? Cymbals, lyres and harps “for the ministry at the house of God” (I Chronicles. 25:1 & 6).

Years later after David died and his son Solomon had completed the grand Temple in Jerusalem (II Chronicles. 5:1), “all the Levites who were musicians…stood on the east side of the altar dressed in fine linen and playing cymbals, harps and lyres, accompanied by 120 priests sounding trumpets. The trumpeters and singers joined in unison as with one voice to give praise and thanks to the Lord. Accompanied by trumpets, cymbals and the other instruments, they raised their voices in praise to the Lord” (verses 12-13).

Can you imagine such an orchestra and choir? The tinkling of the harps and lyres, with cymbals keeping the tempo, and trumpets calling attention to it all? And all those singers! Was God pleased? Indeed he was, for in the form of a cloud “the glory of the Lord filled the temple of God” (verse 14).

All this occurred around 1000 BC. Three centuries later when Hezekiah was king, the same instruments were being played ~ cymbals, harps and lyres (II Chronicles. 29:25f). Why? Because they were prescribed by David, Gad the seer and Nathan the prophet as commanded by God through his prophets. (Acts 2:29-30 says David was a prophet too.)

So we see that during Old Testament times, God commanded that they have full-time musicians to sing and play during daily sacrifices and special feasts and they had to be male Levites and they had to play cymbals, harps and lyres, sometimes accompanied by trumpets.

What a family Samuel had! And I’ll bet he was musical himself. How proud he would have been of his descendants.

Interestingly, although God specified every detail of the instruments that had to be played in the Old Testament, nothing like that was specified in the New Testament. Did God forget? Perhaps God took us to a higher plain in the New Testament era. We do know that in I Corinthians 14:15, we are told to both pray and sing with mind and spirit.

And in Ephesians 5:19 we are told to “Speak to one another with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord.” The term “make music” in the original Greek language of the New Testament is to play on strings. Since we are to make music in our hearts, then it looks like we are to play on the instrument of our heart. How beautiful!

About 40 years ago when my father died, the funeral was in a little country church. The music consisted of a small group from the congregation who sang hymns without the accompaniment of an instrument. They were not good performers ~ they twanged a lot and sometimes were a bit off key. But it was some of the most beautiful music I have ever heard. Why? Because their singing was accompanied by their heart. They were telling my family, “We love you,” and I really felt that they did.

God looks down at our singing ~ no matter how good or feeble ~ and says, “I can tell you love me.” And that’s all that matters.

 

OldOldTunes-ThumbnailTHE OLD OLD STORY SET TO OLD OLD TUNES is a fun songbook for children. Lyrics for 40 songs from the Old Testament and 40 for the New Testament.  Paperback just $8.  To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this:  https://amzn.to/2IOVMsE

 

 

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Tuesday 6/25 ~ It’s your assignment

The scripture for today. June 25 (6/25), is Matthew 6:25 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

06-Moses Thumbnail Cover“Therefore, I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?”

Do you sometimes wonder how God can allow people to starve with such a promise as this?  Try to remember the Big Picture.

Remember the Jews being in slavery in Egypt for 400 years? They must have prayed thousands of times to be freed, but most died still in slavery, believing their prayers never had been answered. God had a greater plan for them ~ a plan to give them time to multiply from the original 70 people who went to Egypt to the over 3 million who left Egypt.

So, too, God has a Master Plan for each person and each nation. It is your assignment to hang on and keep believing in Him and that which you do not understand. That means you may have to sacrifice something important to you for a future generation. It may even mean sacrificing your life for a future generation.

You may not understand, but God always does.

06-Moses Thumbnail CoverA CHILD’S BIBLE HEROES: MOSES is understood from ages 3 and up.  Large print and hyphens between long words to help the early reader.  “Think and Do” at the end of each chapter for the child to do a good work like sing a song, take a cookie to a neighbor.  To BUY NOW, click a book cover or paste this:  https://amzn.to/2ZWOgBZ

 

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