Tag Archives: Micah

Micah 4, 5; Revelation 11

But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah,

who are too little to be among the clans of Judah,

from you shall come forth for me

one who is to be ruler in Israel,

whose coming forth is from of old,

from ancient days.

Therefore he shall give them up until the time

when she who is in labor has given birth;

then the rest of his brothers shall return

to the people of Israel.

And he shall stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the Lord,

in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God.

And they shall dwell secure, for now he shall be great

to the ends of the earth.

And he shall be their peace…Micah 5:2-5a

In a few short days, people all over the world will be celebrating Christmas. Everyone will be celebrating with their own traditions, unique to their families and unique to their cultures. Some will be making merry with the secular folklore of Santa Clause and his reindeer. And some will choose to remember that Jesus is the reason for the season.

From the beginning, the coming of Christ was foretold. Throughout the generations the people of Israel anticipated the coming of the Messiah, hoped for the time to come when they would be liberated from the never ending line of oppressors.

Much of Israel imagined that their Messiah would come as a king and slay the enemy in a violent way to make room for his kingdom. Some people would come to realize that He came in a much different way –as a baby who would grow up as the rest of us do and redeem us in a much different way.

Micah was a prophet who spoke to the future of Jesus – the King who would stand up for His people, becoming like a shepherd to lead them to greener pastures, a bringer of peace. Micah’s prophesies gave the people the opportunity to glimpse into Jesus’ life hundreds of years before He was born, before He walked the earth.

God used Micah to encourage His people and give them hope about their coming King. He increased the eagerness of the people for their salvation and gave them something so important for them to look toward.

I think about the anticipation that I experienced over the past 9 months, from the time that I first heard the news that I was pregnant. It was amazing to have the opportunity to carry a child, knowing that he is full of potential and has an exciting destiny, a hope and a future. It was incredible to peek into the depths of my body to see the ultra sound of my little boy, to see his face with 3D imagery, a hint at what he would look like and who he may resemble. And, it was thrilling to finally meet him face to face and begin the process of getting to know who God made him to be.

Though Christ was born over 2000 years ago, I still experience a similar expectation when I read the prophecies about Him. I know that many of them have been fulfilled in His first coming and I look forward to the rest of them being fulfilled in His second coming. I am excited to get to know Him more, to see His face in the midst of my life. And I am glad to be able to experience His peace and know that I can find strength and security in Him.

Blessings – Julie (writing from the U.S.A.)

 

Unless otherwise indicated, all scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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1 Chronicles 26, 27; 2 Peter 1; Micah 4; Luke 13

Then Jesus asked, “What is the kingdom of God like? What shall I compare it to? It is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his garden. It grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air perched in its branches.”  Luke 13:18-19

“Your faith is shallow and superficial.”  Those were the words that a family member sent flying in my direction.  The words cut to the core and I was ashamed. I knew that there was a kernel of truth there.  Those words weren’t meant to encourage me to grow in faith. The statement was an indictment. I had been measured and found wanting.

Those words burned within for a month.  After all, I live in my own skin. I know the thoughts that rumble around in my head. I know my motives are often impure.  Like Peter, there are times when I choose to deny Christ.  I felt that I had let Jesus down. Then healing came. God took hold of my heart one morning and reminded me of the mustard seed. What he spoke was basically this, “Kathy, your faith in me is beautiful no matter how weak or how strong it is. I died to make your faith complete. I love you.”

So simple, but this is a lesson God never tires of teaching me over and over again. He has won the battle for my heart. His love, his grace are more powerful than my incomplete efforts.  I can rest in that.

Peter, who knew what it meant to deny Christ, offers  these words of encouragement, “To those who through the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ have received a faith as precious as ours: Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.” 2 Peter 1:1-2

Philippians 1:6;  Ephesians 2:8

Kathy

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1 Chronicles 22; 1 Peter 3; Micah 1; Luke 10

It is not fancy hair, gold jewelry, or fine clothes that should make you beautiful. No, your beauty should come from within you – the beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit that will never be destroyed and is very precious to God. 1 Peter 3:3-4 (NCV)

Every day (yes, even in India), I am bombarded with images of male and female models who project what the world values as beautiful. The men are well dressed, muscular, a trace of 5 o’clock shadow, eyes staring dreamily at something on the unseen horizon, a flirty smile on their lips. The women, more often than not, are adolescent girls exposing stick thin figures and ample cleavage in barely-there fashions with come-hither expressions painted on their faces.

The world’s definition of beauty has always left me feeling inadequate, falling just short of the perceived ideal. Even though I did some local modeling while in high school, I still always felt too dumpy, too fat, not enough this, not enough that.

Throughout the years, I have experienced times where I looked at myself and liked what I saw in the mirror. My positive self-esteem strengthened by my understanding that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” and being unique is appreciated. I have also experienced times when I was unhappy with my reflection, especially after being a veteran of childbirth. Though I love my daughters immeasurably, getting to know my post-pregnancy body has sometimes been a less than pleasurable encounter.

In the movie “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days”, Andie (played by Kate Hudson) is going to a gala event with Barry (played by Matthew McConaughey). She steps out of her apartment building in a stunning gold dress, walks to the edge of the steps and turns a 360 in front of Barry who is standing at the bottom of the stairs on the sidewalk. He is awed by her outer beauty.

A few years ago, while I was in the midst of a self-image struggle, God showed me a picture similar to this scene. Dressed in a gorgeous red gown, I walk out of the building, walk to the edge of the step and slowly twirl around. Jesus, standing near the road, looks at me with awe. God whispered in my ear, “You are beautiful. You’re covered in the blood of Christ. You are made perfect in me.”

“Only one thing is important. Mary has chosen the better thing, and it will never be taken away from her.” Luke 10:42 (NCV)

Beauty isn’t simply skin deep. It isn’t about how I dress up or accessorize; it isn’t about wearing the latest trends or having the latest hairstyle.

Choosing Jesus made me beautiful. My beauty is found in my character, in my spirit. It originates inside of me and radiates to the outside. Being beautiful is about Christ in me and the fruits produced as a result of our relationship. Being beautiful is about what I do with that harvest.

The beauty the world prizes will fade – aging is inevitable. But, my inner beauty, the beauty that is precious to God and ultimately treasured by those around me, will never be taken away. It will only grow more beautiful because of Jesus.

Yesappa, Thank You for loving me. Thank You for proving my value and worth when You died for me on the cross and covered me with Your blood. Thank You for making me beautiful. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Blessings – Julie (writing from Sholavandan, India)

Scripture taken from the New Century Version®. Copyright © 2005 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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1 Chronicles 22, 1 Peter 3, Micah 1, Luke 10

Parenting – My son, “You will prosper, if you take care to fulfill the statutes and judgments with which the LORD charged Moses… Be strong and of good courage; do not fear … Indeed I have taken much trouble to prepare …  there is no limit. Arise and begin working, and the LORD be with you.” 1 Chronicles 22 

Marriage – Husbands, …dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife…that your prayers may not be hindered.” 1 Peter 3

Rejoice! Jesus rejoiced in the Spirit and said, “I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth…” Luke 10  

www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1Chron.22;%201Pet.%203;%20Micah%201;%20Luke%2010&version=NKJV

1 Chronicles 22                Then David said, “This is the house of the LORD God, and this is the altar of burnt offering for Israel.” … Now David said, “Solomon my son is young and inexperienced, and the house to be built for the LORD must be exceedingly magnificent, famous and glorious throughout all countries. I will now make preparation for it.” So David made abundant preparations before his death. Then he called for his son Solomon, and charged him to build a house for the LORD God of Israel. And David said to Solomon: “…but the word of the LORD came to me, saying, …. Behold, a son shall be born to you, who shall be a man of rest; …

               He shall build a house for My name, and he shall be My son, and I will be his Father; and I will establish the throne of his kingdom over Israel forever.’  Now, my son, may the LORD be with you; and may you prosper, and build the house of the LORD your God, as He has said to you. Only may the LORD give you wisdom and understanding, and give you charge concerning Israel, that you may keep the law of the LORD your God. Then you will prosper, if you take care to fulfill the statutes and judgments with which the LORD charged Moses concerning Israel. Be strong and of good courage; do not fear nor be dismayed. Indeed I have taken much trouble to prepare …  there is no limit. Arise and begin working, and the LORD be with you.”

                 David also commanded all the leaders of Israel to help Solomon his son, saying,  “Now set your heart and your soul to seek the LORD your God. Therefore arise and build … for the name of the LORD.”

How is the temple of the Most High God within me? Clean and built well on the Foundation that never fails? Ephesians 2:20, 1 Corinthians 6:19

QuestionHave I inquired deeply of the Lord God Almighty what His Will is for each of my children? Matthew 7:7-12 Have a sought God’s answer, waited and implored until He answered? Have I responded to the Lord God Almighty in accordance to His Will? For what am I preparing for my children to accomplish now and after I’ve gone to heaven? How am I preparing, enabling and empowering my children to follow the Lord Jesus Christ in gratitude, passion and whole heartedness – by Jesus’ Holy Spirit and Word? What resources have I poured into my children and given to them physically to equip them to fulfill God’s Will for their specific lives and for God’s purpose and glory? What loss will I suffer if I am not a good steward of my children? 1 Corinthians 3:15, Romans 14:12  And how am I serving God with His Vision in my eyes and heart for my other close relatives, friends and siblings in Christ Jesus? What am I doing today for God’s goals?

Response – I have done much, repeatedly. But most importantly is earnestly living by the Holy Spirit and God’s Word and Praying in all manners for my children. Fasting, praying and being diligent to not let go of Jesus Christ’s priestly garment’s hem. And for many others, too.  Colossians 4:12, James 5:16, 1 Timothy 2:1,8, Ephesians 6:18, 1 Peter 4:7, Ephesians 1

 1 Peter 3               Wives” … may you have “chaste conduct accompanied by fear. May your adornment be  … the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.”     “Husbands, …dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife…that your prayers may not be hindered.”          Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous;… that you may inherit a blessing. …  For the eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their prayers; But the face of the LORD is against those who do evil.” …sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear; For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit,

                    Kindness, gentleness… the Fruit of the Holy Spirit, is needed in Every aspect of life, including sanctified marriage. (Galatians 5:22-25) Sharp repercussions are given by God if we do not live by the Holy Spirit. Prayers will be hindered and the Face of the LORD will be against us. (v.7,12)

              So what makes hearts so hard to not repent and be changed by the living Word? Why does pain continue so needlessly? Lord God, may my husband and I live Your Word for You. Please enable the impossible!! For Your purposes in our children’s lives and outsiders, and for Your glory alone! Amen.  Mark 10:27; Luke 18:27; Luke 18:29-30; John 15:7-8; John 15:16-17

Micah 1               Let the Lord GOD be a witness against you,  The Lord from His holy temple. For behold, the LORD is coming out of His place;  He will come down And tread on the high places of the earth. The mountains will melt under Him, And the valleys will split …All this is for the transgression of Jacob And for the sins of the house of Israel. …All her carved images shall be beaten to pieces,  And all her pay as a harlot shall be burned with the fire; …  For her wounds are incurable. …  But disaster came down from the LORD … For the transgressions of Israel were found in you.  

                  When will God’s people realize their offences and harlotry against the Lord God Almighty Who made them for His delight and glory? When will they awaken to the HONOR it is to be called into an intimate relationship by God? When will they repent and turn away from idolatry in loving the created rather than loving the Creator? When will they soften their hearts and mind to the One Who heals, restores and gives limitless Joy, Hope, Wisdom and Peace? When will True Worship of the Holy One replace titillation of the temporal? When will I and my family take God’s Word as TRUTH and live it by God’s Holy Spirit? Oooohhhh, the agony of watching evil being chosen by children? Oooohhhh no wonder God is called “Long Suffering”!! Your agony Oh God is far greater than mine!! Lord Jesus, please keep me on a short leash, close to You!! I want my Joy Full!! Matthew 23:37, 1 Corinthians 13:4-8; John 15:5-14

Luke 10                the Lord appointed seventy others … “The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; therefore pray

                  Lord God Almighty, send workers out today! Bring a harvest of souls in great numbers!! May the souls you save bear much fruit for another large harvest for You!! And continue the bounty until You return!!

                     May Your workers heal the sick and teach Your Word! Protect them from the enemy of their souls.  Please have them remember Your Words: “He who hears you hears Me, he who rejects you rejects Me, and he who rejects Me rejects Him who sent Me.”  (Do I equate this with my family members? Please Lord, may it be so.)  

And He said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven…. rejoice because your names are written in heaven.” … In that hour Jesus rejoiced in the Spirit and said, “I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and revealed them to babes.

Can I not also REJOICE in the Holy Spirit GIVING THANKS to God?!! Happy ThanksGiving!!

He turned to His disciples and said privately, “Blessed are the eyes which see the things you see; for I tell you that many prophets and kings have desired to see what you see, and have not seen it, and to hear what you hear, and have not heard it.

                     What an HONOR to be called and used by the Lord Jesus Christ!! How can I not be acutely aware of this?!! Every day I rejoice the gospel for Jesus Christ made me His New Creature (2 Corinthians 5:17 ) !! 

“Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” ‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,’ and ‘your neighbor as yourself.’ … which of these three do you think was neighbor … And he said, “He who showed mercy on him.” Then Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”

                 I must be like “He who showed mercy.”  Lord God Almighty, You have abundantly blessed me in the Riches of Christ Jesus. All encompassing: spiritual, physical, mental, emotional and … Philippians 4:19. Please bring to my mind now when I have been selfish and short sighted. Please re-train me for Your Perspective and Ways so I will not sin again. Please forgive me Lord Jesus Christ. (Psalm 51). Increase my capacity to Love You on Your terms and by your Holy Spirit and Word. Thank You!!

“Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word.” … And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”

                 Worship is the most important thing I can give You Lord. To hear your Voice and do Your Will. John 10:27-30 Fill me Lord Jesus! Amen!!

Crystal (PsalmThirty4)

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Micah 1-7

Scripture

But when all is said and done, God’s temple on the mountain, firmly fixed, will dominate all mountains, towering above surrounding hills. People will stream to it and many nations set out for it, saying, “Come, let’s climb God’s mountain. Let’s go to the Temple of Jacob’s God. He will teach us how to live. We’ll know how to live God’s way.” True teaching will issue from Zion, God’s revelation from Jerusalem. He’ll establish justice in the rabble of nations and settle disputes in faraway places. They’ll trade in their swords for shovels, their spears for rakes and hoes. Nations will quit fighting each other, quit learning how to kill one another. Each man will sit under his own shade tree, each woman in safety will tend her own garden. God-of-the-Angel-Armies says so, and he means what he says. Micah 4:1-4 (The Message)

Observation

Micah speaks of all sorts of destruction and condemnation. This book paints a painful picture. I found myself tearing up often–on reading of the enemy covered with shame, trampled underfoot (Micah 7:10 NIV), of people who pick and choose their god, living however they wish (Micah 4:5 The Message)–missing out on the richest treasure they could ever know. This seems so timeless.

And yet woven throughout is incredible hope. God’s great love and mercy. His future plan. Promises–the ones he’s kept and the ones he’ll keep. God-of-the-angel-armies says so. And he means what he says.

Application

Micah has helped clarify God’s image for me. This deeper understanding of him draws me closer, eager to hear more. It calls me back to read and reread. Because I know there’s more here for me to learn.

Prayer

Father, relief–pure relief and hope and awe at you and who you are and what you’ve done and what you can do. It brings me joy and deep peace. I love you so dearly. Thank you.

Courtney

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