Glimpsing God: Banner that leads to victory

Sometimes stating the obvious really does help.Flag Bearer, Timothy Tolle

We see what we look at.

If we spend our time looking at the things we stress over or hate–that is all we see!  That does not lead to victorious living.  Look to Jesus!

After the Israelites defeated the Amalekites, Moses built an altar to Jehovah Nissi.  The Lord, our Banner.  It is a beautiful name to remind us to look to God.  We are soldiers of Christ; there are battles in life.  We must look to God.

Another cool part of these double names is remembering what Jehovah means.  Here is a great insight from the Blueletterbible site:

The chief meaning of Jehovah is derived from the Hebrew word Havahmeaning “to be” or “to exist.” It also suggests “to become” or specifically “to become known” – this denotes a God who reveals Himself unceasingly.

God wants us to know Him and look to Him!

Tools for Growth – Divine Reading of the Word

Faith in Jesus Christ is both simple and complex.  Romans 10:9 is absolute truth:

If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.

Jesus Christ completed the work of salvation.  Living a believing life is not always quite so simple.

Loved ones die.  Tragedies happen.  Lives shatter.

Macro Monday - Joanne JohnsonHope hides in the despair.  Pressing in to find the hope takes courage and strength beyond our capacity sometimes.  Many have walked this road before us–many walk with us.  It is always too soon to quit.  For personal assistance, visit my Personalized Mentoring page.

The Bible is the source of the answers, but it makes no sense to those without the Spirit of God; sometimes it baffles those with the Spirit.  The devil loves to cloud our minds; he does it well.  God is greater.  God wrote the Bible (through forty-some scribes over a few hundred years); He understands it and wants us to as well.

Far too many think they cannot read the Bible.  That is a lie from the pit of hell.  Satan knows the Bible–he uses it all the time.  We MUST read the Word and know it…know the history, the facts and know the heart of each passage.

Listening with the ears of the heart is an art.  In the second century after Christ’s death, this method of reading the Scripture began to be taught.  It was (is) called Lectio Divina or Divine Reading.  It is a deliberate, intense way of approaching the Holy Bible.  It is a way of digging for the hope when despair chokes.  There are many articles on the detailed depths of Lectio Divina, but here is the simplified version.  As you read ask God to show you in the Word:

  • Who He is.

  • Who you are.

  • What He wants you to do with your life.

God created us to be connected to us.  He wants us to know Him and His love–and to share it with others.  You will find that message again and again in the Scriptures.

My Song – full of joy

Jesus says He came that our joy would be full.  We need to sing a song of joy to this hurting world that is starved .  God and Christ are joyful–not mindless mirth but abiding joy that knows the depths of grief as well.  Scripture uses the metaphor of

Tristan Martin, Flickr.
Tristan Martin, Flickr.

“Song” to describe our God.  Isaiah 12:2 and Exodus 15:2 are a couple places to soak in.  These words from John Piper convey the beautiful complexity of the song we sing when we live in the joy of God.

Indomitable joy does not mean there is only joy.  Was he then divided, torn between joy and sorrow?  Can an infinitely glorious soul be troubled?  Yes, troubled but not torn and disunited.  Christ was complex but not confused.  There were divergent notes in the music of his soul but the result was a symphony.

Sing of the King who loves with passion and paid the price to deliver us from pain, won’t you?!

Beginning and End. First and Last.

The eternality of God leaps forth from those names.  Sometimes – far more often than we know, I suspect – we are confused about Truth and reality.  We see something, assign a meaning or an interpretation, and try to struggle through what we have defined.

These names encourage me to press through in confidence that I will find God in every reality.  He is the source and the fulfillment.

Stained Glass II  St. Michael's and All Angels Church.  Read the story on flickr.com.
Stained Glass II
St. Michael’s and All Angels Church. Read the story on flickr.com.

Oswald Chambers says the only reality is redemption.  Jesus Christ came to set us free…to redeem us from the enemy who cast doubt into this world.  Seek Jesus and you find the beginning and the end.  And ‘it’ is good, very good.

Our Inheritance

Now here is a convicting name…because the truth is everyone has things that don’t feel like ‘enough.’  That is an insult to God.

Sometimes it is ourself we are dissatisfied with.  We judge ourself not smart enough, not ambitious enough, not pretty enough.  Other times we look at the world:  our friends are not enough–either in quality or quantity; our home is not enough–size or location; our car is not enough.  You get the picture.

We simply judge our lives as “Not Enough.”  We are both wholly right and wholly wrong.

Psalm 73:26  My body and mind may waste away, but God remains the foundation of my life and my inheritance forever.

Our bodies are frail–they waste away.  Our mind–the soul (mind, will, emotions)–is frail as well.  Both have earthly limits; we are not enough for the demands of life, let alone eternity.  But we are made body, soul and spirit.  Our spirit is the God-given capacity to receive God as our inheritance.  Only when we invite the Holy Spirit–the eternal God–in as the foundation of our lives, are we enough.

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Glory Glimpse – Guide

Jesus Christ is a patient, persistent Guide.  Confident of His power and purposes, He uses all of life to move toward Grand Canyon - National Park ServiceHimself.

He is doing the same for you.  I am pretty stubborn and independent…willful.  Jesus gently guides me back each time I wander from the sweetness of His ways.  He does the same for you.

He is a trustworthy Guide…not impatient, not angry.  He desires the very best for each of us–and He IS the best.  Seek Him.

Trust Him to guide you more than you trust yourself to follow.

My Redeemer Lives!

Redeemer.  Miriam Webster defines redeemer as ” a person who brings goodness, honor, etc., to something again…”  God who does things greater than we can imagine is surely One who brings goodness.  There is no limit to the ways Jesus Christ redeems…promised in Genesis we individually have the privilege to receive the Promise and walk the redemption out!John NineTwentyFive

Here is a great look from another webpage (www.hisnameisjesus.org)

Thus saith the LORD, thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel; I [am] the LORD thy God which teacheth thee to profit, which leadeth thee by the way [that] thou shouldest go. (Isa 48:17 KJV)

What a promise. Here, we’re being told that we will be taught (i.e. instructed) of the Lord, even to profit (meaning, to benefit). There is also the promise in this scripture referrence, that the Lord our REDEEMERwill lead (lead forth, march or march forth, tread, cause to go, walk), us in the way that we should go.

Rider of the clouds!

God of Jeshurun.  Okay, so this name is not exciting at first site…but if the ‘clouds’ ever weary you, you are going to love it!

He is the “One who rides the heavens to help you…One who rides in excellency on the clouds.  The refuge you hide in…the

Clouds of Glory, Tom Raven
Clouds of Glory, Tom Raven

refuge supported by His eternal power and purpose.

There is a ‘catch’ so to speak…Jeshurun means ‘upright.’  It is the honorary name of Israel.  Remember Jacob’s name was changed to Israel.  Jacob–the heel grabber, the one who tried to make his own path became Israel.  God desires to transform all of us…the clouds are a sign of His work.  Trust Him.  He’s there to help!!

Blessed and Only Ruler

Centering our eyes on the glory of God restores order!

How about this as a glimpse of God:

HE is the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords.  (I Timothy 6:15b)

Justice and righteousness are His ruling principles.  He sees what we need and provides because that is His way.  Unity and peace for one and all can only come through Jesus Christ.

Lawrence OP (Flickr)
Lawrence OP (Flickr)

Father, we bow before you.  Like Timothy, we want to heed Paul’s admonishment, and “pursue righteousness, godliness,faith, love, endurance and gentleness.”  Jesus is our source–strengthen us, expand our capacity to receive of Him and be transformed into His likeness.  Help us be obedient, submitted servants to YOU alone.  In Jesus name and for His glory, Amen.