and start anew
with vows of peace
yes push through
into the ways
and will of God
until at last
your feet are shod
prepared in peace
God’s Holy Feast
For there is a way
known unto man
the end destructive
not God’s plan
Change your mind
rend your heart
Today is the day
for a brand new start
© laurette laster
Joel 2:13 NLT
Don’t tear your clothing in your grief, but tear your hearts instead.”
Return to the LORD your God, for he is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He is eager to relent and not punish.
The word Teshuvah literally means turn or shuv. The season of Teshuvah is a time of preparing our hearts by returning to God. How does one return to God? What does turning require? How can one be sure they have turned?
We talked yesterday about being fully vested and ROI (Return on Investment). If we have believed in our heart and confessed with our mouth that Jesus is the only begotten Son of God and that God raised Him from the dead we are in essence fully vested. Being fully vested means we do not lose our blessing of salvation. True salvation is a change of heart that causes a deep revelation to our minds of who God really is. This revelation changes everything about us. When we invite Jesus into our hearts we will never be the same. We become aware of what is pleasing to God and what is displeasing.
God requires a return of His investment. In the story of Moses returning back up to Mount Sinai we see Moses interceding for the children of Israel after the sin of the golden calf. As we read we see a much deeper revelation of relationship. God called Moses at the burning bush and spoke to Moses from this bush. God told Moses He had heard the cries of His people. Covenant is very important to God, and either is, or is not. There is no “common law” in Gods book. We have an alter experience when we God invites us into covenant. Covenant is what decides whether we are children of God or not. Some impromptu answer of, “I believe in God so therefore everything is going to be ok” is not acceptable. When the incorruptible seed of God hits your spirit you are born again.
God had made a covenant with Abraham some 400 years prior to the Exodus account. God told Abraham that he would live and die in old age, but that his people would be in bondage for four hundred years. Genesis 15:13-15
“So God heard their groaning, and He remembered His covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob” (Exodus 2:24). God remembered His covenant with Abraham. There is another account in Genesis where we read where God remembered Noah.
God in remembered His covenant, “And Jehovah saith, ‘I have certainly seen the affliction of My people who are in Egypt, and their cry I have heard, because of its exactors, for I have known its pains;” (Exodus 3:7).
God hears the cry of His people. The promise was to bring them out with great possessions. God kept His promise and does indeed do exactly what He said. He brings them out with great possessions, and they take the very blessings and abundance God has provided and they make it into an idol.
As Moses is worshipping with God at Mount Sinai, God tells Moses he must leave. Then the LORD said to Moses, “Go down, because your people, whom you brought up out of Egypt, have become corrupt. (Exodus 32:7). Do you see how God now refers to the children of Israel as Moses’ people and identifies their behavior as corrupt after the sin of the golden calf? At the burning bush God shares with Moses the plight and suffering and misery of ‘His’ people. In the KJV it explains that God has known their pains. God gives Moses the call and assignment to lead out His (God’s) people yet after they sin, God refers to the children of Israel as his (Moses’) people. So by reading these passages of scripture is it safe to say our behavior shows who we belong to.
If we have walked away from the destiny or destination God has in mind, turning to idols we are not children of covenant and in covenant with God in His eyes. Waiting on the promises of God can be extremely frustrating.
We return to intercede for ourselves because according to God, the promises are for us and our household. When God chooses us to come into covenant He has many others in view. He isn’t looking for one; He is looking for the one who will take seriously the call and the assignment to know Him. This is called the ministry of reconciliation. Then in knowing God we see the need to lead other’s out of Egypt. There is a physical Egypt but there is a spiritual Egypt also. Pharaoh is a picture of Satan and Egypt is a picture of the place of bondage.
Bondage is many faceted. When we speak of bondages often people think of drugs, or alcohol, or gambling. There is no doubt these are horrible bondages that are plaguing our society in the United States of America, but what about the others that are present in our pews today in every church. What about fear? What about pride? What about low self esteem? What about hardened hearts and hard headedness? What about apathy or ignorance, I don’t know and I don’t care? Are these not bondages holding back the body of Christ? Of course they are.
As Christians I pray we return with prayers and cry out for the body of Christ to rise up, speak up, become bold and prepare for the harvest. There are those inside the church that have been lulled to sleep, thinking all is well, and the many outside the church that do not realize their importance and their purpose, and their assignment or call. They may not be aware of the gifts God placed inside them. Creation is groaning for the sons and daughters of God to be manifest. “47For this is what the Lord has commanded us: ‘I have made you a light for the Gentiles, to bring salvation to the ends of the earth.’” 48When the Gentiles heard this, they rejoiced and glorified the word of the Lord, and all who were appointed for eternal life believed. 49And the word of the Lord spread throughout that region.… (Acts 13:47-49).
I am saddened that I do not hear more preaching about repentance today. Life with God starts with repentance. Jesus said repent for the kingdom of heaven is near. Pride is destructive but so is low self esteem or low self worth. Do you see the work of the enemy in the lives of loved ones? I know I do. The body of Christ should be working out and gaining strength. The fields are white unto harvest but the laborers are few.
Pray this prayer
Dear Lord Jesus, forgive me. I have been apathetic and so concerned with my needs that I have missed opportunities to work for You. I have become so caught up in reading about the cares of the world that I neglected to be part of changing these issues. I want to be a part of the great harvest. I want to be a vital part of Your body. I do not want to be ‘my four and no more’ kind of Christian. I want to be used by You for advancing the kingdom of God. I don’t want to warm the pew I want to become strong and able and do damage to the kingdom of darkness. The scripture tells me that the entrance of Thy word gives light. As I read Your word I pray enlighten me Lord, enlighten me. Create a hunger for Your word that I have never experienced. Teach me. Amen
God bless you and keep you and make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you and give you Shalom.
Until next time, thank you for listening with me. Laurette