The Word of God is Greater than Gold

Hello from my corner of the web!  With our move six months ago and my husband’s retirement, it has been months since I have written here and I have missed this corner of quiet reflection as I ponder all the ways God’s word is greater than gold.

Some of you may have breezed through this kind of transition, never missing a beat, never missing an opportunity to post and stay in touch.  I thought perhaps that might have been my experience, but sadly, the truth is, it is not.

Blogging for me, has been about sharing our learned experiences and learning why God’s word is greater than gold.  Sharing what the Father is teaching us in our day to day lives and how His word impacts and changes our hearts.  I have sure missed my time here at Greater than Gold sharing the lessons God teaches me and even though I have not written posts about them, His hand has been active in my heart.  Very active.

But, my days have been so too!  And that activity is something I have had to grow into.  To trust my Father in.

You see, I have spent many years on my own while my husband has been at work.  I have loved that time.  Never having raised children and learning how to share my daily life with a house full of family is not a gift I have been given and I am ok with that.  I have considered my time to reflect and ponder the things of God a gift however and I am very thankful for the years I have had to immerse myself in the River of God.

My husband and I have dreamed these days even as we treaded the waters of prostate cancer.  Our dream has kept hope alive!  We have dreamed and trusted and believed God for health and the past few months have found us both stripping the kitchen down to the bare walls in order to bring about the kitchen transformation we have dreamt of.  The bathrooms too were taken down to the bare walls and we are thankful for the strength and health to do the work ourselves.  Instead of picking up a pen I have picked up claw hammers to remove floor screws and taken a broom and swept up old tile flooring carting the old outside to be taken to the dump…and wallpaper stripping, choosing fresh paint colours, new bathrooms and  trim and crown moulding, flooring and tile choices…Well, I am still in the River of God, but the current of the River changed and has taken me a little further downstream, a little further from the comforts of the shoreline.

We have dreamed these days in years past and sometimes I need to pinch myself to make sure I am really awake!  And all the while, I have thought of you!

I have been awake enough to know I have not written more than six pages in my journal these past six months…awake enough to know I have needed to learn how to transition into this time of life change with grace and wisdom.  Awake enough to know the Father has me in the palm of His hand even though everything about my daily life is so very different to anything I have ever known.

I am awake to His Presence in my life, awake to His Voice in spite of life’s changes, awake to the love He has been pouring into my life through the new family of God He has brought us into.

It wouldn’t be truthful to tell you it has been easy though.  I have faithfully kept a journal for most of my life and written more seriously for at least the last fifteen years and to not pick up the pen or sit down at the keyboard feels  like part of me has been amputated.  I know that is not the actual case, nor is there cause for alarm.

I need only readjust myself as I travel in the River and trust the Father to determine the speed and direction of the current He has me in. 

Today, I have taken the laptop and am sitting in the big leather chair by the front window where I can usually see the cardinals, blue jays and squirrels.  Today there has only been the odd squirrel to make a dash across the street in the heavy rain…

I am here.  I AM is here.  His Presence has never left nor has He forgotten how He has wired me.  He speaks peace to my heart and speaks words of wisdom.  I can hear, I am awake.  Today, I am here and want to let you know that whatever circumstance you find yourself in, God has not forgotten you.  You are engraved on the palm of His hand and His heart is ravished by you.

I ravish His heart too.  My blogging may look a little different these days, but sharing with you why God’s Word is greater than gold is still a burning desire in my heart.  My next post I am going to tell you about how hard it has been to pick a tile for the kitchen and bathroom backsplash.  Such a mundane topic – Nay!  In the choosing He spoke to my heart about how we in the Body of Christ are living, tumbled and honed stones.  Oh, how I want to be that honed stone reflecting His image.

I hope you will meet me here, for He is here.

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Linking up here:  http://www.frogslilypad.net/thankful-thursdays/

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Just to tell You I love You

Probably the most important discipline I have learned as a believer and follower and lover of Jesus, is to pray His word. When we hide His word in our hearts, we have something of substance to chew and stand on in time of trouble.

Instead of letting worry and fear rile up our insides and give us stomach aches, if we choose to meditate on His word, our heart and soul will know peace.  Great peace even in the midst of great trouble.  I don’t think I’m wrong to believe that great peace is something we all hope for in this day and age.

The hiding, meditating and speaking of the Word takes practise, it is a choice we make moment by moment.  After time, after experiencing the ways God moves on our behalf,  it becomes a discipline of much joy as we realize we reap many benefits of the promises of God’s word. 

The Hebrew alphabet at the beginning of Psalm 119:161-168 is “Shin”. It represents a chewing tooth  or teeth that consume and destroy.  Meditating on and speaking out His word is part and parcel of what a ‘chewing tooth’ does.  The lies of the enemy of our soul are brought to light and the Word of God consumes and destroys the work of the evil one. 

I have been working through the Bible study in Beckoned by the King for the last year and a half.  Reading and rereading Psalm 119, longing to have a deeper understanding of how the truths in it can be applied to and lived out in our everyday lives.  I can tell you in all sincerity and honesty – my heart has changed so much, its hard to recognize it as mine!  The fears, doubts and worries I had have all been swallowed up by the beautiful, life changing word of God.  I stand amazed at the work God has done in my heart and soul.  I am so thankful for the absoluteness of the confidence I have in Him and in His word. 

The NIV Study Bible says this about Psalm 119:  “The author of Psalm 119 had a theme that filled his soul, a theme as big as life that ranged the length and breadth and height and depth of a person’s walk with God.  Nothing less than the use of the full power of the language would suffice, and of that the Hebrew alphabet was a most apt symbol.” 

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Between the Lines

I wonder the Psalmist’s secret that enabled him to make the declaration in Psalm 119:71-72:

“It is good for me that I was afflicted, that I may learn your statutes. The law of your mouth is better to me than thousands of gold and silver pieces.”

It seems what he knew is right there between the lines waiting for us to discover. He was so excited about his revelation; but he wants us to figure out for ourselves why he made the statement. He knows we will benefit from our own discovery!

He does not for a minute hesitate to say affliction was good for him and the law from his Lord’s mouth is worth far more to him than thousands of gold and silver pieces. Often we are more consumed with acquiring “thousands of gold and silver pieces” than we are about filling our hearts with the Word of God! Anything to fill the gap that only His Word can fill. Just sayin.

I know that as we are traveling through the valley of prostate cancer, our journey of affliction, and as you travel through your valley, it is in looking back we are able to see how far we have come.  Not in distance but in matters of the heart.

When David was face to face with the giant Goliath, his knees weren’t quaking and knocking in fear.  He had prepared himself by looking back at his previous victories and was now able to declare with confidence,

“The Lord who delivered me out of the paw of the lion and out of the paw of the bear, He will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine.”  1 Samuel 17:37

David was as steady on his feet in the slinging of his rock as he was in his confession of faith!

Are you steady on your feet and in your confession of faith when faced with your Goliath?

They come to us all in one form or another. None of us is immune.

In the years as a young, new believer, before I understood right living and repentance, I would feel so guilty, discouraged and good for nothing.  A friend had given me a New American Study Bible when I graduated from Grade 12 and though dusty and ignored, during those dark nights of depression and uncertainty that Bible would come out and I began to speak the Psalms aloud in my bedroom.  I assure you, the atmosphere in my room lifted, my mood changed. Jesus was present, wooing me with His love and acceptance of me.

When we speak God’s Word our atmosphere changes, God’s Word becomes our literal shield and buckler to deflect all the darts of the enemy! Our responsibility is to speak it, declare it, decree it and then watch to see how the Lord works on our behalf.

In the middle of discouragement when our songs of praise fill the air, Jesus, the Living Word breathes life upon our waiting hearts. I am no longer as fearful in this valley as I have been speaking God’s Word and the law of His mouth is regenerating me, inspiring me and teaching me. His praise has filled me with peace.

Singing songs of praise was exactly what the Shepherd King did when he was discouraged and afraid. We need to teach ourselves that habit as well and be habitual about wearing it!

It is when we feel His breath and hear His Word that the Word is better than thousands of gold and silver pieces. We have to learn how to tap the source, drink from the Well ourselves and be intimate with our Lord. He is a generous sustainer.

Jesus wants to be close and intimate with us. He longs for us to feel the wind of His breath on our cheeks, the whisper of His word in our hearts.

My friend Amy King who writes at http://amygking.com/  is discovering with me, what is between the lines.

No amount of money could do such an amazing work in her heart so she meets her current situation so valiantly and victoriously.

No “thousands of gold and silver pieces” could sustain her heart, give her courage and peace to convey trust to her children, and encourage Kevin. She is speaking God’s Words into her atmosphere and God is at work in their lives, showing His glory and kindness. She has joy in the midst of painful circumstances.

I agree with Amy when she says it is healing to write.  We are learning that in the writing there is a looking back. In the looking back, we see how much we have grown and changed, trusting God with our loved ones. There is a marveling at the depth and steadiness of the faith we possess…

Neither of us can tell you why cancer has touched our spouses.  We can tell you, our hearts and voices in unison, we do know that in the looking back over the past months, the change in our hearts and steadiness of our faith is Amazing! Only God could do such work.

No amount of money could have fashioned that change in our hearts. No amount of money is able to strengthen us so we stand securely in faith. Nobody else’s revelations could have strengthened us the way the tender voice of Jesus does as He speaks to us.

The Treasure is in the Secret Place – His Word! Oh, and don’t you want to be like Jesus, acquiring a mastering of the Word of God, filling your heart with His Words so you are filled with the richness of His treasure?

Only the Word of God breathed upon our hearts brings to life that which is lying dormant.  Only the Word of God shed abroad in our hearts will raise up the victorious warrior in us.

The Word of God is Living Water drawn from the well.  The Word of God is the Rock in our slingshot. The Word of God is the fire in our belly.  The Word of God is the hammer that knocks things securely in place. The Word of God is the claw hammer that reaches way in and withdraws what is useless and messy.

The claw hammer is working in my heart pulling out mangled nails.  God’s Word, right thinking, with nails shot in straight as an arrow are filling the holes in my heart.

The Word of God is our hedge of protection.

The Treasure is in the secret place – His Word! Will you make the time to fill your heart with treasure beyond measure?

 *artwork, mine!

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What Is In Your Toolbox?

Make my way straightProverbs 14:1   A wise woman builds her house…

As wise women we have an understanding of how to be productive with our hands, and because we have applied ourselves to getting wisdom we have carefully laid our foundations knowing how important good foundations are.

We are co-labourers with God, therefore our foundation is secure and we build with gold, silver and precious stones.  

As righteous women of God there is much treasure in our homes and we are not distracted in pursuing a deeper intimacy with the Lord.  

We have learned that the treasure is the gold of God’s Word, and we have made sure that our heart, Christ’s home is full of treasure.  Only then are we fully capable of dealing with life situations in the way that reflect the glory of God.

Our lives are models of good conduct and because we fashion our lives after Christ, we are single hearted and single minded.  We allow Christ to fashion us according to the works of His hands and we are clothed with His humility, His compassion – styles that are classic and enduring.

And so, we go about building our house.  Building homes as we sow love into the lives of our husbands, children and friendships.  We reach out with open arms and filled hands to others in our community.

Sorrows and heartache come when least expected and still we are building our house; being productive with our hands, compassion and empathy filling our hearts.  The storms of life come, the north wind blows upon our garden and yet still we stand, still we’ve bid our soul to be.  We have built our foundation upon Christ the Rock and we are  secure.

We are Journey Women – skilled, capable, strong, dependent, needy, fragile

We are Journey Women, we have our papers identifying us as no longer apprentices.  We have our papers and these give us access to come boldly before the King’s Throne of Grace.  We are as familiar with the Throne Room as we are with our kitchens, we know our kitchen utensils – but what is in our Toolboxes?

Any experienced journey woman knows though, that before we get to work with our toolboxes a clothing change is necessary.  We need to don our PPE – our personal protective equipment that will enable us to really get in there and do what we are called to do.

So let’s get ready and see what we need to put on:

  • Overalls – they protect what is underneath.  They clothe us with compassion and confidence so we can really get involved with the work and not have an arm’s length attitude.  With our involvement we remain clean on the inside, we can roll up our sleeves knowing that the Blood of Jesus “coversusall”  We have learned by experience not to attempt things except we know we are under the Blood of Jesus.
  • Gloves – These enable us to never be afraid to touch because we know that we minister healing through our touch.  We are able to assist in the unwrapping of someone’s gravecloths so that person can step forward into the Light, free and unbound.  We are not afraid to minister in the area of practical assistance because we know the dirt and discomfort will not touch us.
  • Earplugs -The noise of the world is tuned out and yet our ears are attentive to hearing the cries of the poor and needy.  We are tuned into the frequency of Holy Spirit.
  • Safety Glasses -These allow us to overlook offenses and protect us from the darts that are directed our way.  They protect our vision so we see clearly and unceasingly through eyes of love.
  • Steel Toe Boots -These give us feet like hinds feet able to stand on the mountain crags declaring victory after tearing down the high places in our hearts and souls.  We have peace in our souls as we stand solidly upon difficult terrain.
  • Hard Hat – An essential element in our PPE – We must practice submission and obedience to the Word of God and we must be under a greater authority in order to have more authority.
  • Turtle Neck – These keep our necks warm so that regardless of circumstances we never become stiff necked.
  • Air Horn - humility causes us to fearless in coming before the King

So are you all dressed and ready to see what your Toolbox contains?

Let’s take a look inside and see what our Toolbox holds that enables us to build so beautifully, etching all we do with such amazing and unique creativity?

Every toolbox will include some very basic essentials so let’s dive in and take a peak….

 

  • Hammer - The Lord said in Jeremiah ” Is not My Word like a hammer?”
  • Plumbline – Necessary to measure our lives against the Word.
  • Chalk - Purple chalk so we have vision to see how our lives measure up to and align with the Royal Decrees of our King.
  • Sanding Block – Irritants of life that cause our rough edges to be smoothed off so we are jointly fit together.
  • Nails – these pierce our hearts so they open to receive God’s Word and instruction.
  • Screws - They are like prayer, they keep us steadfast and anchored.
  • Full Can of Oil – Holy Spirit Who helps hold everything together
  • Drill - the ability to intercede.
  • Duct Tape - never be without duct tape! It represents unity and fellowship within the Body of Christ.
  • Flashlight – Also part of our PPE – it ensures we have clear vision and a heart set on loving, hearing and obeying God’s Word and shows us how to love the Lord and one another.  This usually hangs from the belt of truth that is around the waist of our overalls.
  • Measuring Tape - God measured the waters in the hollow of His hand. – Isaiah 40:1  God measured, God spoke what was in His heart.  God gave each one of us a measure of faith and with that measure we build our homes speaking out the promises of God for ourselves and our loved ones.  Our faith is secure.  We have dreams and hopes for our homes and so based upon God’s Word we begin, room by room to fill our homes with precious treasure and oil.  We then have order, beauty, strength and creativity at work in our lives as we shape our future with the promises of God.
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To Love Surrendered

Don’t you just love it when the truths of God’s word, truths you have known since forever blast a hole in your heart and you see something brand new and fresh?

The phrase “the law of the Lord” is one very such verse that has been playing in my mind for the last several days and this morning something exciting is rising in my heart, filling me with the joy of wonder.

The law of the Lord is stringent, it never changes and we are required to keep it.  Yes, even in New Testament days, days of grace and mercy, we are required to keep God’s laws.

When Jesus was asked by a lawyer (Matthew 22:36) to tell him which was a heavy commandment, the one that was the greatest and most important to keep, Jesus responded with a verse most of us have memorized.  I heard it the first time in Grade 5!  I heard it today for what seems the first time…

In verse 37, Jesus replies that we SHALL love the Lord our God with all of our heart and with all of our soul and with our entire mind. He lets the lawyer, and us, know that this is the most important, the heaviest commandment and the second one is very close to it. We SHALL love our neighbour as we love ourselves and the doing of these two commandments are an integral part of fulfilling the others.

Shall,” in the dictionary, indicates something that must happen and that somebody is obliged to do something because of a rule or law.

When we have determined to choose obedience to God’s Word, all we have to do is determine to love God.  This was categorized as a “heavy law” but when we choose this as the focal point of our hearts and minds, this heavy burden of the law becomes easy.  Why?  Because as we draw near to our Father, we are consumed by His love as He draws near to us.

Living by the law sets us free – sets us free to love and understand the intrinsic value we are to the Father.

We are enabled to love because we have come to a place of understanding our worth and value to God even though it may be difficult to rationalize how we can be loved so unconditionally.  After all, we know ourselves, but He knows us even better, He knows who He created us to be and His love speaks to that part of us.  He calls out the gold and treasure in us and it is with great certainty that God is promising the inevitability of our future.

He is promising that if we keep the law of loving Him, His promise to us in return is that we SHALL love Him with all of our hearts, souls and minds.  He is bound by His Word and desires to see it bear fruit in our lives.  He watches over the Word He has spoken, breathes life with it, fans the flame of desire and nothing keeps it from coming to pass in each one of our lives.

Money cannot buy or build character into our lives, something far greater than gold has begun to shape our characters.

A key is found in Proverbs 15:6 “In the house of the uncompromisingly righteous is great priceless treasure.”

Our acts of uncompromising righteousness are revealed in our walk of love towards God and others.  When we obey the “you shalls”, the “you shall nots” will take care of themselves.

Can we make Psalm 119:72 a reality in our lives?  Can we say and agree with the Psalmist when he says, “Oh God, the law from your mouth is better to me than thousands of gold and silver pieces.’

He goes on to reaffirm his understanding that the hands of God carefully fashioned, shaped and established him and asks for understanding; a deep heartfelt understanding that he can truly hold and cradle in his heart the laws of the Lord.

We are His house, the place where His glory longs to dwell.

Will you allow the light of His word to chase out the darkness within you?

Will you stand and take your place in the Kingdom as God’s son or daughter?

With eyes that see with Spirit eyes, can you see yourself all glorious within, seeing your clothing, the very fabric of your being wrought with gold?  Can you see how surrendering to Love has brought freedom to your soul?

 

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