Friday, September 26, 2008

Peace in 'Being'

There are some potentially life changing decisions going on in our lives at present. I was sharing with my brother some of the seeming options and he made a comment/question that really set me to thinking. The jist of it was this. Am I more concerned that I am in God's will or that I am in His 'heart'. There is a place in God's heart that only I can 'fit'. God can 'do' all kinds of things. He can create out of what we call 'nothing'. In a sense that is 'easy' for Him.

But when God gave other intelligent beings the power to choose, that meant they could also choose any will other that His best will for them (what we call sin). That also meant that God was by His choice restricting Himself.

After writing the last sentence I paused for thought. God's deepest longing isn't so much the 'doing' is our 'being' in Him. He wants me to 'know' Him personally, intimately, lovingly.

God loves me more than my spouse or even myself. What love.

I must go for now, but keep in mind that God loves you for who you are in Him, not what you do.

Bringer of Peace

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Peace in the midst 5

The past 7 days have been VERY busy at times. A few weeks ago we began praying that one of my sisters would find a home to live in. She has been 'living' in very 'tight' circumstances and it has been quite difficult for her. Near the end of August a program became available that appears to be the answer for her. She has located a place and is already in the process of making arrangements to secure the place for her to live in. I praise the Lord for such a relatively quick answer to prayer.

But that doesn't seem to be the end of that prayer answer. The same program she shared with me and it appears that we may also soon have a 'new' to us place to call home as well, Lord willing.

Our present place, however, wasn't just 'living space' for us. Several other folks are presently residing with us here on the farm. It appears that the same program may also help them with places to live as well so things have been increasing in the level of activity here - to put it mildly.

That, however, is only one part of what has been happening here. Another sister came from Michigan to spend a few days with me. It has been such a privilege to have her here and we have been spending a lot of time together. She has even seen our possible 'new' home already.

Then, of course, there is the time with the Lord. He has been in the process of revealing a few things about me to me and a lot of things about Him to me (that part I really like). I have been thinking about the story of Eli in the Old Testament and 'comparing', 'contrasting' it with the story of the prodigal father in the New Testament, all the while learning a lot.

And through it all God is teaching me how to remain His Daughter. God is wonderful. I may be able to fill in more details soon but I must go for now.

Until next time, peace be with you.

Bringer of Peace

Monday, September 15, 2008

Gratitude producing Peace

Many times I have experienced peace in another person's presence when they have been grateful. Somehow, when someone appreciates it makes it easier not only to 'look' for more ways to 'help' but it also, I believe anyway, opens opportunities for two minds to mature.

As I mentioned in the blog on the sanctuary, science has discovered that when two minds come into harmony and then experience JOY and PEACE together, that very experience enables them to grow and mature as well as enables each of them to cope with life more effectively.

Another word that has been used along this line is 'affirmation'. I think 'thanksgiving' may also be part of this equation as well. Knowing that another mind is grateful, thankful, affirming, can do much to bring about the kind of unity where 'peace' thrives.

There is a lady that I have been working with on several projects over the past few years. There have been many times when she will call me up after I have come home just to thank me for taking the time to work with her. It is often just a short call but it means a lot.

I have much to do but right now I think I am going to go find someone else to share gratitude with. See what you can do along that line as well.

You have a good day.

Bringer of Peace

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Blessed Peace

How awesome! The Creator God of the Universe loves me so much that He made an extra-special appointment with me for today.

Oh, God was with me yesterday. He talked with me and guided me, and at times told me to 'Be still' and listen. He sent His angels to protect me as I drove on various errands. He was able to get through to me many times as to when to 'talk' and when to just listen to others who were on a mission to give me counsel - some of which I'm sure was good, but some of which was 'filtered' and needed additional 'tweeking' by God before it would 'fit' my situation. (Isn't God wonderful to do things like that!)

So, why is today's appointment 'different'? Well, even though God is with me every day - Praise Him for that assurance - I have much to do here and there are times when I, of necessity, focus on a lot of what I term mundane activities day by day. But on this day's appointment with God, things are different. And why? Let me see if I can share just a bit why.

When God created this world in the 'beginning' as described in Genesis 1 He did His magnificent work in a 'war zone', if you please. Those of you who are reading this are probably familiar with some of the basics of that war which started long ago in a place called heaven. (If you would like more information on that topic let me know and I can share) In short, One of God's highest government 'officials' decided he could run God's government 'better' than God. It wasn't an overnight rebellion, to say the least, but when issues finally came to a head, it culminated in out and out 'war' and the Bible records that the opposition finally 'left' God's immediate presence.

But rest assured that wasn't the 'end' of the conflict. In fact, the opposition forces moved their headquarters eventually to this solar system and more particularly to an area we call earth.

God had not been taken by surprise, however, In fact, as mentioned above, One of His 'counterattacks', if you want to use that term, was to move into the same territory and claim what the enemy 'thought' was their 'turf' as rightfully God's territory.

A few years ago I had the privilege of listening to a professor of 'ancient history' on this topic. The professor pointed out that in the Genesis 1 account of the creation of this world there were specific references to the 'opposition' in relation to this cosmic war. (The KJV Bible and most other versions - probably because they didn't understand the story from a 'war' perspective - don't really indicate this in their translations into English.)

In one sense the creation of this earth into a habitable dwelling place and then the creation of a 'new' part of God's family was a key move on God's part in the 'war' in which He was involved.

Let me hasten to say that God in no way planned for Adam and Eve to join the opposition. God actually planned to use this earth as a place where He could reveal even more of who He really was and what He was really like. Even though Lucifer turned Satan and all who had chosen to accept his authority in place of God had left God's immediate presence in heaven, there were still some lingering questions even in minds of those who had chosen to remain loyal to the Creator God. Being the God of love that He is, God chose to reveal Himself in ways that would forever answer those lingering questions in part through the creation of this earth and the 'new' family that would have their home here on planet earth.

As the end of the sixth day of creation drew to a close the Bible tells us that God 'ended' His work. Everything He had created was awesome and complete and the whole loyal universe - who had been intensely looking on and learning more about their loving Creator during this creative process - 'exploded', you might say, in a grand 'hallelujah' chorus of love and adoration to their Wonderful Maker. As that grand celebration began to 'soften' and 'wind down' - somehow I sense that it may have continued for the whole next day (also refered to in the Bible as the seventh day) - God blessed the 'seventh' day and hallowed it (set it apart as special). In our terms of today God made the seventh day a 'holiday' (in a spiritual sense). And not only was that first 'seventh' day a grand celebration but God told His new earth family that from then on every Sabbath He would, in a special way, be there with them to 'remember' who He really is and what He is really like. WOW!

Yes, God is with us every day and for that I am so humbly grateful. But because one day Adam and Eve chose to 'disobey' God and come under the dominion of the opposition, the Sabbath has become meaningful in another way. Not only is it now a time to remember, in a special time holiday, that God created this world, God also made it a 'sign' or symbol of loyalty to Him in this great cosmic war zone.

So, how does this apply to me here and now? For one thing, during every seventh day Sabbath's twenty four hours - from sundown to sundown - God has given me the special 'right' to lay aside as many everyday, mundane activities as I possibly can so I will have that extra time to join in the cosmic celebration of adoration and worship to the Creator God who made me. How awesome! Even in this sin filled, pain wracked, seemingly evil dominated earth, the Creator God of the Universe has an appointment with us, His family, every Sabbath.

The enemy, I'm sure, was furious at this move on God's part. Consequently he has counter attacked in various ways and has tried, down through the ages, to obliterate this special 'time sign' of loyalty to the Creator God. One enemy tactic was to substitute another day as 'holy'. For some this worked quite well and there have even been 'human' laws mandating worship on any other day than the seventh day of each week throughout the history of this world.

But some (especially those who were in more direct contact with the Creator God, some of whom were written about in the Bible) held on to the Sabbath as a sign of their loyalty to the Creator God. The enemy of God and man realized that in order to 'fight' against these people he needed other 'tactics'. One plan he came up with, and it has been rather successful with too many, was to 'burden' the Sabbath with all kinds of traditions, rules, regulations, restrictions and taboos. God had said to 'keep the Sabbath holy'. Humans began to 'define' what holy meant. Then they would add their 'meanings' to it 'ad nauseum' until 'keeping the Sabbath holy' became a burden rather than a 'delight'. Sadly, this has been all too effective with too many.

But, although the seventh day Sabbath has been trampled upon by many, ignored by many, misinterpreted and even attempted to be 'changed' by law or otherwise, in the Bible God has declared that He is still meeting with His family every seventh day Sabbath by appointment.

So, what does this have to do with peace? For me every seventh day Sabbath is becoming more and more a time when I am given the privilege of laying aside human distractions and focusing more clearly on the God of Peace who tells me "Peace I leave with you". Oh yes, God is with me every day, praise Him. But on the Sabbath "I" can be more with Him. This Sabbath day of rest and gladness was established before sin took the human race hostage and God promises that it will continue on even after sin and sinners are no more.

Think of it, the last book in the Bible, Revelation, gives us the promise that even after sin has been banished from God's universe, every Sabbath we will still have that special appointment with the Creator God where we can partake of God's PEACE and JOY. What a loving God.

The seventh day Sabbath as a sign of loyalty to God was established by God as the final act of creation week, even before Adam and Eve sinned, God later told His family to 'remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy' when He spoke from Mt. Sinai to His family whom He had just delivered from Egypt and set free from Satan's form of goverment. God reminded His family throughout the Old Testament times that the Sabbath was the 'sign' between Him and them that He was their God. In the New Testament, Jesus (by His own example) kept the Sabbath holy. And when Jesus revealed Himself to John the Beloved (who recorded it for our encouragement in the book called 'The Revelation of Jesus Christ') He opened to John's understanding that the same sign of love and loyalty to the Creator God - keeping the Sabbath holy - would remain through time and for eternity.

What a privilege for me! I can join the rest of the family of God every seventh day Sabbath in celebration and worship to the Creator God who loves me so much. And as I experience the JOY of His salvation, His PEACE also is poured into my soul.

During each week so many other activities bid for my attention. But God has given me a special right to lay them aside each Sabbath so that "I" have extra time to spend with Him. Even though He is always with me every day, that special Sabbath time is becoming more and more special to me - as is His plan.

Blessed Peace! Yes, and far more. I thank God for this special, precious, 'time gift' of the Sabbath every week. Praise the Lord!

May I invite you to join me this Sabbath, and every Sabbath from now on, in this special JOY filled, PEACE producing time with Him and His family here on earth and in heaven.

Bringer of Peace

Friday, September 12, 2008

God gives Peace

In the next few days we may be making some decisions that could (and really will) be life changing. I am not at liberty to disclose information but for anyone who is willing to pray for us, we invite you to join us in claiming that we will remain determined to not only make choices that glorify our wonderful Father in heaven but we also 'stay' with Him, remain in His will as we journey.

"Peace I leave with you" is part of the heritage Jesus left with us. Making this big of a decision (or more accurately, a series of decisions when it is all said and done - but it begins with one that is really the 'turning point' at this time) We claim that the God of Peace will guide our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

If we were the only ones involved I suppose it would be less 'intimidating' in one sense. If we decide 'one' way the effects will have a ripple effect (or maybe even to a tsunami level might be possible), but to 'do nothing' at this point (which is one possible decision also) . . . well, to be honest, I am not at all comfortable with that either.

In the past God has given us peace when we are in His will. That is what we are craving now.

Thanks in advance for all of you who join us in praising God (which beats the enemy back and gives us the victory in Jesus - see quote posters) that His will is going forward and we are choosing to 'stay' in Him which will envelope us in His inward peace.

Bringer of Peace

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Silver Springs Event and more

Sunday my artist friend had a presentation of a few of her paintings in a location in Silver Springs.
It was a very enjoyable time, I felt. I took her and helped with some of the smaller details as well as got to know some of the folks.

After everyone left we packed up the paintings and headed home with the assurance that God had been working in some very special ways on that day.

During the show I had the special opportunity to meet some lovely women. Each one was unique and each had different likes and tastes. They all seemed to enjoy the art work as well as the fellowship. This is a 'new' to me area of life. I am not a 'brush' artist but I do enjoy the works of those who do paint. I am thankful for this special opportunity.

During the middle of the art show I took a little time off and went out for a walk - and a chance to visit with my hubby by phone - which was also very nice.

Another delightful treat was the water lily that was blooming in my flower garden.
Every opening bud, every spire of springing grass is as an "I love you" from Jesus. How awesome!

Exploring Messiah's Mansion

There was a life size replica of Messiah's Mansion - also called the sanctuary - on display in southwest Virginia. One of the presenters asked Olive to come and share some of what she had learned about the awesome message illustrated by God in 'Messiah's Mansion'.

It took a few hours driving but it was worth it. I believe that God did use the time to share with others the wonderful good news of His love and how to experience the peace and JOY He only can give.

The first picture is of a model of the sanctuary God instructed Moses to put together (Exodus 25:8) in the Old Testament Bible.

The second picture depicts the court which surrounded the earthly sanctuary. The activities and items in the court represent God's plan to bring a sinner back into harmony with the heart and mind of God. Science has 'discovered' that the same three steps as illustrated in the court are essential in bringing two minds into harmony - synchronization - with each other. The gate into the court (area surrounding the sanctuary) illustrates the first step in harmonizing with another mind. Psalm 100 explains that the gate represents 'praise'. Praising God includes focusing on what He is really like and what He has done in love. Affirming (only) other minds is the 'gateway' into developing harmony with them.
The large altar of burnt offering deals with coming into agreement. When we learn who God really is and what He is really like we can choose to agree with Him. As we agree with Him this leads us to let go of any lies we have previously harbored and He has the power to take away all misconceptions - represented by a large wash basin (laver) just before the sanctuary itself.

When two minds synchronize, they are then prepared to experience the next two parts of what was illustrated in Messiah's mansion.

Science has 'discovered' that when two minds come into harmony the following experiences - which have been labeled 'JOY' and 'PEACE' by science - are those which develop a person's ability to cope with the stresses of life. How to develop these experiences are illustrated in Messiah's Mansion. Of course it makes sense that God knew a long time ago how the mind works and how it can grow, mature and cope with stress.

After the 'court' experiences the next 'steps' in experiencing Messiah's Mansion plan for the mind is illustrated in what is called the 'holy place'. There is another 'door' leading into the 'holy place'. The experience illustrated by that door has been called 'thanksgiving'. When two minds have become synchronized there is truly a thankfulness that positively affects both minds.

Inside the 'holy place' there are three 'items'. Each one represents an experience 'science' has discovered will bring joy when two synchronized minds participate together in.

One experience, represented by a seven branched candlestick, was prophesied in Isaiah 11:2-4 Messiah would would be given 7 spirits - wisdom, understanding, counsel, power, knowledge, reverent submission and discernment. He successfully lived a life fully in agreement with His heavenly Father, so we have been promised the same as He received when we ask God for it.

Another article in the holy place was a golden table upon which were twelve loaves of unleavened bread. When Messiah came, also called Jesus, He said that 'eating bread' was to the human body what 'taking in His Words was to the heart and mind. To us He is the bread of life.

As we 'break bread together' with other minds we can all be nourished as we share with one another what God is sharing with us. To me that is a very joyful experience.

The next picture is of the 'altar of incense'. It is smaller than the first but it is also much more valuable in the sense that it was made from gold (the alter of burnt offering was bronze). Now that two minds are synchronized and have been enlightened and nourished they are able to communicate on a much 'deeper' level - not just surface, "beautiful day, isn't it" type of talk. They can share on ever increasingly deep levels with one another. God gave the mind capacity to experience really living in truth. The altar of incense also represents a very sacred experience called intercession. Simply put, we can can talk to God for others. There are times when one mind is so filled with certain things it is not possible to communicate with another mind as they should be able to do. Intercession allows another mind to come along side - compassion - and communicate with, for and to the other mind. This can be a very powerful experience to enable true growth, fellowship and love.

Keep in mind that each one of the experiences in Messiah's Mansion apply to a person's relationship with Messiah as well as between two human minds who come into harmony.

There is one more part of the sanctuary that holds very special symbols with deep meanings.
There is only one piece of 'furniture in the 'most holy place' but it has at least three unique applications or 'meanings'. In the court the three 'experiences' I believe, also represent how the 'three-in-one' God is longing to work with a mind in such a way that it will be brought back into harmony with Him. The three 'holy place' experiences are similar. In the 'most holy' place of the sanctuary I perceive God saying, "I am One and My goal for you is to bring you so close to Me that you are indeed 'at one' in Me, therefore there is only 'one' item. This is also true of two human minds who cooperate with each other. God's aim is to restore the human family into a common unity, community, with one another AND with Him.

The top of the ark was called the 'mercy seat'. Mercy involves not getting what we deserve. Because of the blood of Jesus (represented when the blood of a goat was sprinkled on the mercy seat one time a year in the earthly sanctuary) that was 'shed' on Calvary, we do not receive what we deserved when we accept Jesus as our Saviour. When in fellowship with other minds, we also do not give what is deserved when it is in the 'negative'. The mercy seat was on top of the 'ark' - a gold box. The ark represented God's covenant (A 'greater' power making saving promises to a 'lesser' mind or power) and God's grace (giving what is not deserved). Inside the ark were two stones. On those two stones God wrote His law. (Jesus said in Matthew 22:37-39 His law was to love God supreme and love others as you love yourself.) The visible sign God gave as He spoke, of loving Him supreme, was delighting in Him on every seventh day Sabbath by hallowing that sacred time of communion with Him. The visible sign of loving others as you love yourself is honoring God's plan for family (another whole study in itself).

In the communication of two minds there is a PEACE based, confidence, a trusting 'most holy' experience God intended should be 'sacred' or 'holy' between those two minds who are in harmony. And as the two minds experience both 'JOY' and 'PEACE' they will both 'grow up' and mature in genuine 'other-centered' love.

Once a year the High Priest entered the Holy of Holies. Jesus, our heavenly High Priest, wants to be the only and Supreme God in our heart - our most holy place.

There is so much more that I have learned from the study of Messiah's Mansion but for now, may the JOY and PEACE of being in harmony with God and others enable you to become men and women of LOVE.

Bringer of Peace

P.S. It is our choice to follow God's plan to come into agreement and harmony with Him.
When it comes to other minds, we can offer to harmonize with them in God's way but we can never force them to accept our love offers. There will be some minds with whom we can never synchronize and God knows that (from His own painful experience).

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Labor Day and Beyond

Maybe we take 'Labor Day' too seriously. Someone had given us some fruit so we spent a lot of Sunday and Monday 'laboring' to get the fruit canned for use later (since my hubby had Monday off work as a holiday). We do enjoy getting to work together but we were 'labored out' by the end of Monday, to say the least. We still have some pears but they may have to wait a little longer. There are other things to do besides canning only. One problem, though, is that fruit won't wait long. Keeps life interesting.

Back in April just before our son went to boot camp for a while he bought me some 'polka dot' plants. I have always enjoyed them but hadn't had any for a while. I planted them beside our doorway even though there was a chance they would get too much sun. Needless to say they have done beautifully, as the picture shows a little bit. It is a constant reminder to me of our son whenever I come and go. Thanks a lot, Carl.

This picture of us was taken when we weren't quite so 'labored'. Some friends were leaving on a trip and we asked if we could take their picture. They also wanted one of us.

Part of the time we were working on fruit we were listening to some word pictures of God. Some of the information presented was what we were used to. Some of it, however, was definitely aimed at restoring our picture of God back into what it should be. It is amazing how many misconceptions about God abound. Even though I have been a christian all my life I still find that I have had lies in my mind which has caused me to misunderstand who the real God is and what He is really like.

I praise the Lord, though, that He has been revealing more and more about Himself to me. He is so much more than I have previously understood. Some of what we were reviewing (or learning) had to do with correcting lies which 'blame' God. It is too much to explain in just a few sentences in this blog alone but as I have understood more how God has guarded the 'power of choice' both in myself and others - since true, other-centered love will never force - I have understood more why God is not the One to 'blame' when 'things go wrong'.

God isn't the One to blame, but He is wanting to enable me to understand the real truth about who He really is and what He is really like. That, of course, is an ongoing class in my experience.

There is a lot going on today so I must go for now. Hope you have a JOY filled day with Jesus and learn how to rest more in His peace.

Bringer of Peace