Christmas Prayer 2020 Greetings, Dearly Beloved. May you be not overly burdened by life’s cares and worries. After all, we have a Great Hope and Friend in Heaven — Jesus — sticking beside us on our journey in this world. A Help for all people who are in need, especially with this illness conveying hardships on so many. With God, life is key; not only the hereafter but today: protect yourself. The deceiver will try to knock you down, only persist in your Faith and devotion to God. Life matters more than money, so protect youself and those around you against the throws of this world. Attend to study, prayer, and meditating which will admit light into your mind and peace to your soul, guiding your decisions. I hope you experience the Joy and Wonder the shepherds felt in the core-of-their-being when finding the Christ Child. Even the angels marveled! Jeff
"Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear." NASB
To the people near you . . . “give grace”.
Although this writing was for a church assembling together, I encourage you to apply this attitude wherever you go. Better yet — wherever you are; as God calls you to face an emptiness, longing, or sought-after confirmation within our living of this world.
I was extremely tempted to write about giving thanks but since a lot of people will be emphasizing thanksgiving I chose this. (But do be thankful for what you have. It always helps).
Be a giver of Grace. Not to horn-in on a conversation or control it; which is a great temptation.
Not to make sure you give the last word, having the last gotcha.
Only to bring a right-placed word, if needed.
In these “Covid times” a well-placed word might be wanted and needed. And you might be the right person to speak that word.
Leviticus 25 begins with the Sabbath. Then moves into the year following 7 groups of agricultural’s 7-year cycle (the 50th year) letting the land rest and enacting profound social changes.
A year of jubilee!
יוֹבֵל. A Hebrew word pronounced: Yobel. A wind instrument— a ram’s horn— is used to ‘wind’ this note. A “Triumphant Blast” = a “JUBILEE!” And a WHOLE YEAR of JUBILATION!!! (Imagine Whoville at Christmas Whobilation. Thanks to Dr. Suess.)
A year of celebration in signifying the lifting of socio-economic inequalities. God wanted to call attention to how we are to be in company with each other.
Why mention jubilation during a pandemic when people are so afflicted? Radical ideas are needed in these times. Could it be time for a complete forgiveness of all debt and a reconciling of all pay scales, including benefits? I believe God thinks this way of doing business is advantageous for our society in general, pandemic or not. Continue reading “It is only $$ — Leviticus Economic Policy”
Jude is tucked away at the close of the New Testament, just in front of Revelation. When perusing through the Bible don’t blink or you’ll miss it. It is 1 chapter in length, sincerely compelling us to “contend for our Faith”. But the word “contend” is used in many translations. It is defined as an ongoing effort, a struggle — I think upwards or uphill against gravity like climbing a mountain, with thorn bushes and obstacles along the path — towards a goal. This goal is knowable, defined and is obtainable, reachable.
Jude’s unction for writing is to preserve a genuine Faith, the True Faith. Giving examples of how God rewards the faithful he then begins a laundry list of worldly ideas. Sometimes to know what it is we a talking about we take a look at what it is not. I wish we could do without this but to know the True Faith it is sometimes good to remind ourselves what to stay away from. This litany seems to drag on but verse 17 turns a corner.
In verse 20 you look to yourself and in prayer in the Holy Spirit you “strengthen” yourself. Do not turn aside but keep the goal in mind. Continue to tread towards the summit.
To carry this Faith you must know what the task is. And use the Faith you already possess. Could it be you are honing your Faith? Like a pilot of an airplane flying to a destination making course changes along the way. At takeoff the heading is established but nudges are needs to stay on course. The Faith is summed up pretty well in Matthew 5.
Another practical application in these Covid 19 times is to watch yourself and stay healthy. Watch how often you expose yourself to catching this disease or spread it to others. I live in New York State and Gov. Cuomo has become the herald for lowering the transmission of Covid. I applaud this attitude, others do not, which is their right to choose. But for you: you take responsibility for your health and the health of people around you.
Can you see we are at war with the adversary tiny? The “unseen enemy” is upon us. Watch our flanks. No, the enemy is directly ahead. It’s within our ranks, one of us has succumbed. What are we to do now. Don’t let down your guard.
CONSTANT VIGILANCE!!! (Thank you, Professor Moody.)
“I am alone now, truly alone, and absolutely isolated from any known life. I am it.” Astronaut Michael Collins, Apollo 11
Remember Astronaut Michael Collins on the first moonwalk 50-years ago? No, I don’t either. 🙂 🙂 🙂
Actually I do. About every 2-hours Michael Collins, in the Command Module, Columbia, flew over Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong after their descent to the lunar surface in the Lunar Lander, Eagle, and were the astronauts who first walked on the moon.
. . . and one plus God only knows what on this side. I feel this powerfully — not as fear or loneliness — but as awareness, anticipation, satisfaction, confidence, almost exultation. I like the feeling.
Let’s backtrack a little. 3-Days earlier the Columbia crew fired their main engine, for TLI, that is Translunar Injection. This ‘burn’ set their trajectory away from orbiting earth in favor of traveling to the moon. That is: they pointed the Columbia to travel to where the moon’s position would be 3-days (approximately 40-degrees) ahead of the moon’s present position. You have to plan ahead, you know.
I have fortunately lived in the space-era, the ‘space race’ — ‘we HAD to beat those Russians’ to the moon, no second choice in the matter! Amazing what a little ‘friendly competition’ can accomplish. President Kennedy said in outlining the mission to go to the moon AND RETURN safely, “. . .not because it is easy, but because it is hard.” Continue reading “talk about your social distancing. . .*”
The book of James has much to say about deepening prayer.
I am cautious when combining these particular Bible verses in this way because they relate independently. Chapter 1 is about how we think. Chapter 4 is on material goods. Chapter 5’s subject matter is on remission of sins. Never-the-less. . .
I am asking you and those whom you share this with to pray the Corona virus outbreak out of existence.
1:5-6 Wisdom can be gained by asking in Faith
To me, ‘Wisdom’ that comes from God gives us hope and a backbone to seek God and His strength.
4:1-3 If you fail to ask you just might end up with nothing.
The simple truth is we want stuff without asking God first. And without asking God we turn to our own way of accomplishing our goals — by massaging our passions.
Thus, I am asking you and those whom you share this with to pray the Corona virus outbreak out of existence. Let it flatline. Let God do His work. Let us be aware that people are of much greater value than money.
As James 5:16 says the prayer of the Faithful can accomplish things with its great power.