Proverbs: Love Your Neighbor Part 2

“29Do not plot harm against your neighbor, who lives trustfully near you. 30Do not accuse anyone for no reason— when they have done you no harm. 31Do not envy the violent or choose any of their ways.” ~Proverbs 3

In the Throne Room of God

I present my sacrifice

I have His praise on my lips

But there God reminds me of wrongdoing

And He points outside to the door

.

The LORD desires repentance

The LORD desires forgiving hearts

The proud heart He will not abide

The violent mind He will not tolerate

.

So I left the Throne Room

To seek my brother

To ask forgiveness for my wrong against him

Selfishness is not what I’m after

As I seek unity in Christ

I seek unity with you

Peace, brother

Peace

.

As Christ humbled Himself

Becoming flesh from the Godhead

As Christ did not seek His own glory

But desired the interests of His Father

As Christ was obedient even to death

May we be of the same mind

May it be said of us

.

May we not envy the wicked their wickedness

But trust in the LORD with all our hearts

And do good

Desire after the LORD

And desire good

Commit to the LORD

And He will reward you with good

Wait for the LORD

For He is good

And do not be afraid of wickedness

And do not be afraid

.

So I asked my brother for forgiveness

And whether he was willing or unwilling to give it

I return to the Throne Room of God

I present my sacrifice

I have His praise on my lips

And He embraces me

He embraces me

~

‘Also let none of you devise evil in your heart against another, and do not love perjury; for all these are what I hate,’ declares the LORD.”

Romans 12:18

If it is possible on your part, live at peace with everyone.

Psalm 37

1Do not fret because of those who are evil or be envious of those who do wrong; 2for like the grass they will soon wither, like green plants they will soon die away. 3Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. 4Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. 5Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this: 6He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, your vindication like the noonday sun. 7Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.

Matthew 5:24

leave your gift there before the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.

Philippians 2

“1Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. 3Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.

5In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: 6Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; 7rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. 8And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death— even death on a cross!”

Proverbs: Trust in the Lord

“5Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” ~Proverbs 3

Trust in the Lord

All ye peoples

Trust in the Lord

All you who seek good

Where has man gotten you?

What have you built up?

It all comes crashing down

It all gets twisted around

.

Trust in the Lord

All ye peoples

Trust in the Lord

All you who seek good

Where is the Lord

In your planning ways?

He’s there either way

He’s there

Glorify Him

.

Trust in the Lord

All ye peoples

Trust in the Lord

All you who seek good

Where does the road go?

Is it narrow or wide?

By His Light you will get through

By the Door you will get through

.

Trust in the Lord

With all your heart

And lean not on your

Own understanding

In all your ways

Acknowledge Him

And He will make your

Paths straight

~

“9In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.” ~Proverbs 16

1Why do the nations conspire and the peoples plot in vain? 2The kings of the earth rise up and the rulers band together against the Lord and against his anointed, saying, 3“Let us break their chains and throw off their shackles.” 4The One enthroned in heaven laughs; the Lord scoffs at them. 5He rebukes them in his anger and terrifies them in his wrath, saying, 6“I have installed my king on Zion, my holy mountain.” ~Psalm 2

6Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7If you really know me, you will know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.” ~John 14

12When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” ~John 8

7Therefore Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. 8All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. 9I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture. 10The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” ~John 10

13“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” ~Matthew 7

24“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 26But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” ~Matthew 7

Food For Thought: Joy

1That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched—this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. 2The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. 3We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. 4We write this to make oura joy complete.” ~1 John 1

I recently read through 1 John with a friend, and something he brought up when we got to the above passage was that he wasn’t sure he knew what joy meant.  What is joy?  What in this passage is there to be joyful of?  I thought about this, and what came to my mind was that the disciples knew Jesus as the Savior, and it was their joy to proclaim it.  They wanted everyone to have a relationship with the Father and Son.  And whoever has fellowship with God has fellowship with one another, unity of spirit and mind, and that would make their joy complete.

So what is joy?  It usually thought of as an excessive happiness, an overwhelmingly good feeling.  But that would mean, wouldn’t it, that when things go bad in our lives, we cannot be joyful, either in one another nor in God.  Joy would be fleeting, so what would be the point in looking for its completion?  And so often, when I read in the psalms, I see that the authors had such a horrible time with enemies or feeling like they were being ignored by God.  Yet they prayed to Him anyway, asked for His salvation.  Why should they bother if they had no hope or joy in Him at the moment?  But as it says in Psalm 42, “11Why, my soul, are you downcast?  Why so disturbed within me?  Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.”  It is a choice to believe what you know to be true, and to put your hope in God is to find joy in Him.

But what is complete joy, lived out to the full?  Again, I look to the Psalms.  Psalm 63 has been a favorite of mine ever since I read it.  It begins with these words: “O God, You are my God; earnestly I seek You; my soul thirsts for You, my body longs for You, in a dry and weary land where there is no water.”  That is what I think joy is.  An earnest seeking, a thirsting, a longing for the object of your affection.  It is desire, devotion, deep love and strong commitment.  That doesn’t change with circumstances.

It isn’t easy, that’s for sure, to remain in hope and joy in the Lord.  There are days I don’t feel like praying to God, don’t hunger for His word.  There are days when I don’t feel like loving the people around me or I feel alone and ignored by the world and God.  And I know how difficult it can be for people who have lost loved ones, who might lose loved ones soon, who don’t have that assurance of hope in God to care of them.  But God isn’t changed by fears or feelings, He remains faithful.  Choosing to trust God anyway bears the fruit of peace.

4Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” ~Philippians 4

Have a blessed week!

My Pain, Your Pain, The LORD

For a loved one

Trust
Trust in the LORD
If I have none
Then in what can I trust?

I know
There seems to be
Pain around
Every
Single
Corner
I know
There seems to be
No end to
The
Enemie’s
Stabs
But in the end
All I can say is
“Glory to God”
Even when I
See
No
Glory

The Word
Believe what the Word says
If I do not have it
Then what really can I
Hold onto?

I know
There seems to be
No deliverance
God’s
Forgotten
Me
I know
There seems to be
A constant
Gnawing
At
My
Soul
But in the end
The truth of the Word
Is the only thing
I can cling to
All I can do
Is
Wait
On
The
LORD

Do not reject the LORD
My child
Do not reject Him
What do you have left?
Do not spurn His Words
My friend
Do not spurn it
To what can you now cling?
I know you don’t understand
And neither do I
But if you believe God is there
And that His word is right in everything
Then why turn your back on Him now
When you most desperately need Him?
He knows all
He is over all
And in all things
He will be glorified
And His people sanctified
And His church purified
And His Name praise
“As for me and my house
We
Will
Serve
The
LORD!”
~

“9We are given no signs from God;
no prophets are left,
and none of us knows how long this will be.
10How long will the enemy mock you, God?
Will the foe revile your name forever?
11Why do you hold back your hand, your right hand?
Take it from the folds of your garment and destroy them

12But God is my King from long ago;
he brings salvation on the earth.” ~ Psalm 74

When the people of Israel were being oppressed and they cried out to God in Psalm 74, they didn’t merely say, “Act God!” or “Save us!”. And it wasn’t as if they didn’t feel rejected. But the point is that they still acknowledged God as God and wanted Him to be honored. They knew that it was His honor that was at stake, not their own annihilation.

When we’re in pain, do we reject God? When we feel crushed, do we trust His Word? His Word promises pain and not that we will always be pulled away from it. Do we believe Psalm 91 when it says “He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you will find refuge; His faithfulness will be you shield and rampart.” ? Do we believe Romans 8:28-30 when it says that God works all things for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose; these people He predestined to be conformed to the likeness of His Son; these people He called, whom He also justified, whom He also glorified? Do we believe these things when pain is strong? Do we believe that God is good all of the time?

Because if we do not believe in His word, how can we trust Him? And if we cannot trust Him, then in what can we trust?

“Trust in the Lord
With all your heart
And lean not on your own understanding.
In all your ways
Acknowledge Him
And He will make your paths straight.” ~ Proverbs 3:5-6

Straight into His arms.

My King: The Throne Room

I sing
In the throne room
Of the King
Of my heart
Of my heart
I praise the Lord of the
Heavenly glaze
He’s a whole of a part
A whole of a part
Don’t stop to stare
The night is melting
The day is daring
To fair well
At the hands of
My King

I sing
In the throne room
Of my King
In my heart
In my heart
I praise His hand
That surrounds me
In a rainbow ring
That’s how it starts
It starts with
His mouth
And the faith He grows
I give a shout
And He works in me
In my hands I work
For my King

Don’t bury your head
Deep down in the sand
Don’t fall asleep
In the promised land
Trudge, trudge onward
There’s a mountain on fire
Full of promised surprise

Oh the glory
Oh the holiness
Oh the glory
Of His mightiness
Oh praise Him
The King of
Our souls
Oh praises to
Oh singing to
You LORD
You, King
Of my heart
In my heart

Kneeling in
The throne room
Of my King
~

Revelation 4:

“1After this I looked, and there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And the voice I had first heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.” 2At once I was in the Spirit, and there before me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on it. 3And the one who sat there had the appearance of jasper and ruby. A rainbow that shone like an emerald encircled the throne. 4Surrounding the throne were twenty-four other thrones, and seated on them were twenty-four elders. They were dressed in white and had crowns of gold on their heads. 5From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder. In front of the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits of God. 6Also in front of the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal.

In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back. 7The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. 8Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying:

“ ‘Holy, holy, holy
is the Lord God Almighty,’
who was, and is, and is to come.”

9Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever, 10the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say:

11“You are worthy, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they were created
and have their being.”

My Fool: Psalm 53

Fools, fools,
Every one one of them fools
They make me sick
With their ways of deceit
They lie, they cheat,
They covet and kill
They devour the innocent
And never get their fill of it
And yet they are worried
They are sick with fright
What are they afraid of?
Why are they overwhelmed with worry?
I do not know
I cannot see it
But even as they shake
Shivering in their shoes
They refuse to call on God
They refuse to acknowledge the existence of God
They refuse understanding
And refuse to seek Him out
Fools, fools,
Every one of them fools!

God looks down from heaven
He looks down at the surface of the earth
To see if there are any
Who understands
To see if there are any
Who seek His face
Does He see me?
Does He see you?
There is no one does good,
Not even one!

Fools are we
Fools am I
Who is corrupt to the core
But the Lord has reached down
And chosen whom to bestow His grace on
When He looks down
Now what does He see?
He doesn’t see you or me
He sees His Son’s blood
Covering us
Inside and out

Do not be overwhelmed with worry
The LORD will deliver you from all your troubles
What has the Lord promised?
He will bring salvation!
He will restore His people!
Praise the Lord!
Be glad!
Understand
Seek His face
Trust Him
And be glad!
~

“1The fool says in his heart,
‘There is no God.’
They are corrupt, and their ways are vile;
there is no one who does good.

“2God looks down from heaven
on all mankind
to see if there are any who understand,
any who seek God.
3Everyone has turned away, all have become corrupt;
there is no one who does good,
not even one.

“4Do all these evildoers know nothing?
They devour my people as though eating bread;
they never call on God.
5But there they are, overwhelmed with dread,
where there was nothing to dread.
God scattered the bones of those who attacked you;
you put them to shame, for God despised them.

“6Oh, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion!
When God restores his people,
let Jacob rejoice and Israel be glad!”
~Psalm 53

My Meditation: Psalm 131

Wait on the Lord.

There are things always demanding our attention, important and unimportant alike. There are many things available to us in this world, and thus it is not surprising that we can find one or several things we can crave. There are things constantly happening in our live that make us stressed or long for the future. There are days when we just don’t know what to think or pray.

Wait on the Lord and be content.

“My heart is not proud, Lord,
my eyes are not haughty;
I do not concern myself with great matters
or things too wonderful for me.
But I have calmed and quieted myself,
I am like a weaned child with its mother;
like a weaned child I am content.

“Israel, put your hope in the Lord
both now and forevermore.” ~Psalm 131

My Teacher

(An older poem of mine)

Where is the love we once swore to crave?

Where is the trust we once swore we would never betray?

Where is the hope that shone so bright?

Where is the righteousness we said we would continue to grow into?

I am a rebel, I have always been one.

First loyalty was to hatred and pride

And then to become beautiful in His sight.

I felt a new blossom revive in my soul

I opened my eyes and yearned to be whole.

I said, “This is love

Love I must feel for all of these people.”

So I set out to make it my zeal.

I felt a growth

A pain and yet a sweet fragrance

You cannot grow without trial

And I said, “This is trust I am learning

I will trust the Lord always.”

So I set out to make Him my stronghold.

I saw a light far away in the sky

Not a star

Not the moon

And I said, “That is Jesus holding out hope

My crown is waiting, hold onto hope.”

So I moved on to follow the light.

I came to realize something awful

That I could do nothing good at all

And I said, “I need grace,

Grace to make me righteous like Him.”

So I set out to know Him more and to let Him lead my life to righteousness.

But where has this led me?

Where has it gone?

I allowed myself some pleasures

I allowed myself to conform to the world

I looked for love when God had not ordained it

I could find nothing when I wanted and so I did not trust

The hope, the light, was so far away that I decided I did not need to follow so faithfully

I found righteousness too hard so I gave up too easily

Lord, where has this brought me?

Where have I gone?

My heart has turned to bitterness

I hate my brother

I speak with him often, but little is fixed

What bitterness is in my soul

Where has it come from?

From the world I follow in

From not loving in the correct way

From not following the Lord’s ways

From giving up on hope and righteousness

Lord, teach me to love

I feel empty inside

Lord, teach me to trust

I betrayed You long ago

Lord, teach me to follow

The light of hope burns so small

Lord, fill me with grace

Lest I fail in the quest

Teach me to forgive my neighbor

Teach me to love my brother

Teach me, Lord

Teach me 

“For He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son He loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” ~ Colossians 1:13-14

“Teach me, O LORD, to follow Your decrees; then I will keep them to the end.  Give me understanding, and I will keep Your law and obey it with all my heart.  Direct me in the path of Your commands for there I find delight.  Turn my heart toward Your statutes and not toward selfish gain.  Turn my eyes away from worthless things; preserve my life according to Your Word.  Fulfill Your promise to Your servant so that You may be feared.  Take away the disgrace I dread, for Your laws are good.  How I long for Your precepts!  Preserve my life in Your righteousness.” ~Psalm 119:33-40