Tag Archives: Warrior

Proverbs 16-19; Matthew 10

He had the power to heal and restore and raise. Loving Jesus. When Satan tempted him in the wilderness, he resisted the challenge to prove or grasp at anything, but stood upon God’s Word. Wise Jesus. When he was accused and arrested and condemned to death, he didn’t raise a sword; he didn’t argue his defense; the image of him beaten and bloody, carrying his cross in front of an audience, being nailed upon it, left to die–the mockers crying out to him, “Can’t even save yourself!” He seemed broken, weak, defeated. But here, he fought a battle no one understood. Humble Jesus. Warrior Jesus. Savior.

34 Don’t imagine that I came to bring peace to the earth! I came not to bring peace, but a sword.

35 ‘I have come to set a man against his father,
    a daughter against her mother,
and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.
36     Your enemies will be right in your own household!’

37 “If you love your father or mother more than you love me, you are not worthy of being mine; or if you love your son or daughter more than me, you are not worthy of being mine. 38 If you refuse to take up your cross and follow me, you are not worthy of being mine. 39 If you cling to your life, you will lose it; but if you give up your life for me, you will find it (Matthew 10:34-39, NLT, emphasis added).

In Matthew 10, Jesus prepares the disciples to send them out–I sit at his feet and listen in: Do the work (Mt 10:8); Shake it off and move on (Mt 10:14); Beware (Mt 10:17).

16 “Look, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves. So be as shrewd as snakes and harmless as doves. 17 But beware! For you will be handed over to the courts and will be flogged with whips in the synagogues. 18 You will stand trial before governors and kings because you are my followers. But this will be your opportunity to tell the rulers and other unbelievers about me. 19 When you are arrested, don’t worry about how to respond or what to say. God will give you the right words at the right time. 20 For it is not you who will be speaking—it will be the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.

21 “A brother will betray his brother to death, a father will betray his own child, and children will rebel against their parents and cause them to be killed. 22 And all nations will hate you because you are my followers. But everyone who endures to the end will be saved (Matthew 10:16-22, NLT, emphasis added).

Things are more than what they seem. Lord, I pray for kingdom focus, wisdom and guidance.

20 Get all the advice and instruction you can,
    so you will be wise the rest of your life.

21 You can make many plans,
    but the Lord’s purpose will prevail (Proverbs 19:20, 21, NLT).

Grateful your purpose will prevail, always.

Courtney (66books365)

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Filed under 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, Matthew

Isaiah 56-59; Psalm 70; 1 Corinthians 16

I’d never been in the presence of such a warrior. We were talking about life and hard issues, and I shared something that had hurt me deeply that I was still trying to resolve in my mind and heart. She offered to pray for me, and when she did, I felt small and humbled by the things she took to the throne on my behalf–boldly, powerfully. In fact, I almost felt afraid at her great, impassioned petition for vengeance.

Please, God, rescue me!
    Come quickly, Lord, and help me.
May those who try to kill me
    be humiliated and put to shame.
May those who take delight in my trouble
    be turned back in disgrace.
Let them be horrified by their shame,
    for they said, “Aha! We’ve got him now!”
But may all who search for you
    be filled with joy and gladness in you.
May those who love your salvation
    repeatedly shout, “God is great!”
But as for me, I am poor and needy;
    please hurry to my aid, O God.
You are my helper and my savior;
    O Lord, do not delay. (Psalm 70, NLT)

 

God is so mighty. And her mighty prayer showed me who I’m dealing with. This was many years ago, and I don’t remember the exact words she said (mostly because I was drop-jawed stunned as she said them), but I will never forget that evening. Weeks later I got word of some things that immediately brought this warrior to mind as her prayer was answered. I was awestruck. I couldn’t get my head around it. But that incident became grounds for great trust in God, his might and sovereignty. (As well as the very real power of prayer!) I learned over the years to trust him with the outcome of things that were so much bigger than I was. And I still do.

I read an article recently that left a long impression on me about forgiveness, “Forgiveness means we don’t ignore. We don’t excuse. But we do release the right of vengeance to God without pretending vengeance isn’t right” (True Woman, Haley Mullins, 9/4/18). God is just. He is judge. I take the wounds and hurts and offer them to him, to free my heart–because it is the wellspring of my life.

The Lord looked and was displeased
    to find there was no justice.
16 He was amazed to see that no one intervened
    to help the oppressed.
So he himself stepped in to save them with his strong arm,
    and his justice sustained him.
17 He put on righteousness as his body armor
    and placed the helmet of salvation on his head.
He clothed himself with a robe of vengeance
    and wrapped himself in a cloak of divine passion.
18 He will repay his enemies for their evil deeds.
    His fury will fall on his foes.
    He will pay them back even to the ends of the earth.
19 In the west, people will respect the name of the Lord;
    in the east, they will glorify him.
For he will come like a raging flood tide
    driven by the breath of the Lord.

20 “The Redeemer will come to Jerusalem
    to buy back those in Israel
who have turned from their sins,”
    says the Lord.

21 “And this is my covenant with them,” says the Lord. “My Spirit will not leave them, and neither will these words I have given you. They will be on your lips and on the lips of your children and your children’s children forever. I, the Lord, have spoken! (Isaiah 59:15-21, NLT)

When I’m taking a walk, I notice the size of the trees, trees that seem so big when I stand beside them, but look so small compared to the backdrop of the heavens–and I am so much smaller, a young child is smaller still.

Oh, Lord, how is it you notice me? I am so grateful. That of everything under your watch, you see me and you care for my heart. You value truth and what is right, and it is worth fighting for. You give me hope. What a precious gift.

Courtney (66books365)

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Filed under 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, Isaiah, Old Testament, Psalms, Uncategorized

Exodus 37, John 16, Proverbs 13, Ephesians 6

Our fight is not against people on earth but against the rulers and authorities and the powers of this world’s darkness, against the spiritual powers of evil in the heavenly world. That is why you need to put on God’s full armor. Then on the day of evil you will be able to stand strong. And when you have finished the whole fight, you will still be standing. Ephesians 6:12-13 (NCV)

God is the creator of all things in the heavens and in the earth. I think of my children and how perfectly formed they are, down to the smallest details, including the heart-shaped birthmark on my toddler’s abdomen and the perfectly kissable lips on my baby; and I marvel that, as unique as these two little girls are, they are only two of the trillions of completely distinctive human beings who ever lived or died.

As I read more about the details that God laid out for the construction and artistry of the items used within the tabernacle, and even the tabernacle itself, it is amazing to me how specific He is for each item. From the type of materials used to the measurements and sizes, all crafted by a man whose name means ‘In the Protection of God.”

I believe that there is so much significance to everything that God does, meaning within meaning. There is a reason each of these items were certain dimensions. There is a reason each item was adorned with specific decorations. There is a reason certain materials were used in the construction of each item. Of course, physical beauty to be admired and strength to withstand the ages, but also everything ultimately points in some way to the cross, the finished work of Christ.

More specifically, what stood out to me was the use of acacia wood and gold. Annette Ettinger, my dear mother-in-the-Lord, a woman who has extensively studied Biblical botanicals, writes this:

 “Acacia or shittim wood was a virtually incorruptible wood that God chose for the construction of the Tabernacle of Moses and its contents; excluding the laver, the golden lamp stand and the mercy seat.  All of the acacia wood was overlaid with pure gold representing the deity of the Lord.  The acacia wood depicts the Lord’s humanity and His sinless incorruptible nature.

We enter into this anointing through the framework of the tabernacle…This imagery clearly brings forth a prophetic picture of the body of Christ being jointly fit together, standing ‘shoulder-to-shoulder’ and resting in the finished work of the cross.  Overlaid in gold represent His Bride taking on His image from glory to glory through His refining fire!” 1

When I accepted Christ in my heart, we became one, I in Him and Him in me. Through Him, I am given strength; I am given everlasting life. I am grafted into His vine. As I continue to receive His gift, He infuses my life and literally changes me from the inside out. He trains me, teaches me and gives me the tools I need to withstand – truth, righteousness, peace, faith, salvation, the Word of God, and prayer.

At the same time, His glory covers me from head to toe, and I am given God’s armor which reflects His image and His glory to protect me. My image transforms from that of a woman clothed in the filthy rags of sin to the image of a warrior princess covered in the gilded splendor of my King. And, I am able to stand against the wiles of the enemy.

Armour of God 2

Blessings – Julie, Vadipatti, India (written in the U.S.A.)

1 http://www.hegai.org/products/acacia.html

2 http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_cdhgqHhno4o/SjTLwf0sFcI/AAAAAAAAAY0/BwC3WLKSPX8/s1600-h/Armour+of+God.jpg

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

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Filed under 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, Ephesians, Exodus, John, M'Cheyne Bible reading plan, New Testament, Old Testament, Proverbs