Pillar of Salt

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Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“When the Hand of God changes your life, going back is futile and useless.”~TB

Opening

When a radical change has occurred in your life, finding your footing can be tough. It’s like a chasm or opening where new opportunities— good or bad— can take root. Patterns and habits from your previous existence no longer bring you the same joy as they once did. But, sometimes knowing where to go next brings more questions than answers and it can be stressful. If you look at the story of Lot’s wife, it can be tough to understand why she was turned into a pillar of salt. All she did was look back, what’s the harm in that? But, if you look at it metaphorically, it’s easier to comprehend. When we begin a new life in Christ, the old stuff cannot remain. It’s kind of like shedding skin if you think about it. The discipline lies in having the courage and faith to move forward without craving the life you once led.

 

 

Forward

I’ll be honest, when you change into who God has called you to be, you will lose your previous identity and sometimes that means the people you once did life with. It can be an isolating and strange experience if you don’t reach out when necessary. The one thing I’ve learned is that a blank canvas scares many people. After all, our society paints a supposed blueprint for this thing called “life” so when a plan gets blown up, having the imagination and fortitude to start something new can be terrifying. It’s probably why many turn back to old behavior, because it’s comforting or familiar. But, what if the unknown held something better? If we can reconcile the fears we hold in our minds and rely on the vision that God provides, moving forward doesn’t seem all that scary. The trick is to hold onto faith when doing so.

Today’s Question

Are you stuck in your past?

Enjoy the reading

Isaiah 26

1 In that day, everyone in the land of Judah will sing this song: Our city is strong! We are surrounded by the walls of God’s salvation.
2Open the gates to all who are righteous; allow the faithful to enter.
3 You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!
4 Trust in the LORD always, for the LORD GOD is the eternal Rock.
5 He humbles the proud and brings down the arrogant city. He brings it down to the dust.
6 The poor and oppressed trample it underfoot, and the needy walk all over it.
7But for those who are righteous, the way is not steep and rough. You are a God who does what is right, and you smooth out the path ahead of them.
8 LORD, we show our trust in you by obeying your laws; our heart’s desire is to glorify your name.
9 In the night I search for you; in the morning I earnestly seek you. For only when you come to judge the earth will people learn what is right.
10 Your kindness to the wicked does not make them do good. Although others do right, the wicked keep doing wrong and take no notice of the LORD ’s majesty.
11 O LORD, they pay no attention to your upraised fist. Show them your eagerness to defend your people. Then they will be ashamed. Let your fire consume your enemies.
12 LORD, you will grant us peace; all we have accomplished is really from you.
13 O LORD our God, others have ruled us, but you alone are the one we worship.
14Those we served before are dead and gone. Their departed spirits will never return! You attacked them and destroyed them, and they are long forgotten.
15 O LORD, you have made our nation great; yes, you have made us great. You have extended our borders, and we give you the glory!
16 LORD, in distress we searched for you. We prayed beneath the burden of your discipline.
17 Just as a pregnant woman writhes and cries out in pain as she gives birth, so were we in your presence, LORD .
18 We, too, writhe in agony, but nothing comes of our suffering. We have not given salvation to the earth, nor brought life into the world.
19 But those who die in the LORD will live; their bodies will rise again! Those who sleep in the earth will rise up and sing for joy! For your life-giving light will fall like dew on your people in the place of the dead!
20 Go home, my people, and lock your doors! Hide yourselves for a little while until the LORD ’s anger has passed.
21 Look! The LORD is coming from heaven to punish the people of the earth for their sins. The earth will no longer hide those who have been killed. They will be brought out for all to see.

Zombie

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Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“In order to get your attention, God will allow uncomfortable situations to occur to shake you from your zombie-like state.”~TB

Mindless

The next time you’re in public, like in a store, take a look and observe your surroundings. It’s not hard to see that we operate like zombies, mindlessly plugged into things, not fully present. Society is so numb with gadgets and the constant need for entertainment, it’s no wonder why people are struggling to feel something real. Everything is manufactured and designed for instant gratification! There are so many distractions, devices, and the like that keep us from truly knowing God. Friends, you have to get out of your mindless routines and seek the Lord with all of your attention and heart. If you desire an authentic relationship with God, don’t be surprised if certain things, behaviors or people are uprooted from your life in the process. It is called pruning for a reason.

Wake Up

Seasons of setbacks, discomfort, and loss aren’t always bad things or from the opposition. Comfort numbs us from thinking we need to change. Complacency is more dangerous than external forces, which is why God will shake things up for those who seek Him. In those moments, self-reflection is crucial for you to grow in Christ, because with the wrong set of eyes, you can mistake correction for persecution. It’s easy to become frustrated in your walk and wonder ‘why me’. However, if you can look past how you feel and look at your life with an honest heart, you will find that God is showing you something. Some of you are numb, getting by, forgoing your calling. Others are exploiting others’ work and not tilling their own soil. Wherever you are, if you’ve knocked on God’s door and He’s shaken you from your zombie life, rejoice! Look and listen carefully to learn what He is showing you.

 

Song of Solomon 4 

1 You are beautiful, my darling, beautiful beyond words. Your eyes are like doves behind your veil. Your hair falls in waves, like a flock of goats winding down the slopes of Gilead.
2 Your teeth are as white as sheep, recently shorn and freshly washed. Your smile is flawless, each tooth matched with its twin.
3 Your lips are like scarlet ribbon; your mouth is inviting. Your cheeks are like rosy pomegranates behind your veil.
4 Your neck is as beautiful as the tower of David, jeweled with the shields of a thousand heroes.
5 Your breasts are like two fawns, twin fawns of a gazelle grazing among the lilies.
6 Before the dawn breezes blow and the night shadows flee, I will hurry to the mountain of myrrh and to the hill of frankincense.
7 You are altogether beautiful, my darling, beautiful in every way.
8 Come with me from Lebanon, my bride, come with me from Lebanon. Come down from Mount Amana, from the peaks of Senir and Hermon, where the lions have their dens and leopards live among the hills.
9 You have captured my heart, my treasure, my bride. You hold it hostage with one glance of your eyes, with a single jewel of your necklace.
10 Your love delights me, my treasure, my bride. Your love is better than wine, your perfume more fragrant than spices.
11 Your lips are as sweet as nectar, my bride. Honey and milk are under your tongue. Your clothes are scented like the cedars of Lebanon.
12 You are my private garden, my treasure, my bride, a secluded spring, a hidden fountain.
13 Your thighs shelter a paradise of pomegranates with rare spices— henna with nard,
14 nard and saffron, fragrant calamus and cinnamon, with all the trees of frankincense, myrrh, and aloes, and every other lovely spice.
15 You are a garden fountain, a well of fresh water streaming down from Lebanon’s mountains.
16 Awake, north wind! Rise up, south wind! Blow on my garden and spread its fragrance all around. Come into your garden, my love; taste its finest fruits.

Something New

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Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“In order to go somewhere new, you have to do something new.”~TB

Next Level

If you’ve been trying to go to the next level in your faith, but feel stagnate, check your process. Examine your patterns of behavior. Grab ahold of your thought life. Old methods won’t yield new results. So throw off the old and embrace doing something new.

Uncomfortable

New places, people, and things are unfamiliar and probably feel uncomfortable. Truth is, growth will always be uncomfortable. So if God is placing you in a period of uncomfortable-ness, it’s not punishment, but rather the playing field for you to grow closer to Him. Choose to see the opportunities rather than the obstacles.

Today’s Question

Are you ready to give up your old ways for something new?

Enjoy the reading

Song of Solomon 1

1 This is Solomon’s song of songs, more wonderful than any other.
2 Kiss me and kiss me again, for your love is sweeter than wine.
3 How fragrant your cologne; your name is like its spreading fragrance. No wonder all the young women love you!
4 Take me with you; come, let’s run! The king has brought me into his bedroom. Young Women of Jerusalem How happy we are for you, O king. We praise your love even more than wine. Young Woman How right they are to adore you.
5 I am dark but beautiful, O women of Jerusalem— dark as the tents of Kedar, dark as the curtains of Solomon’s tents.
6 Don’t stare at me because I am dark— the sun has darkened my skin. My brothers were angry with me; they forced me to care for their vineyards, so I couldn’t care for myself—my own vineyard.
7Tell me, my love, where are you leading your flock today? Where will you rest your sheep at noon? For why should I wander like a prostitute among your friends and their flocks?
8 If you don’t know, O most beautiful woman, follow the trail of my flock, and graze your young goats by the shepherds’ tents.
9 You are as exciting, my darling, as a mare among Pharaoh’s stallions.
10 How lovely are your cheeks; your earrings set them afire! How lovely is your neck, enhanced by a string of jewels.
11 We will make for you earrings of gold and beads of silver.
12 The king is lying on his couch, enchanted by the fragrance of my perfume.
13 My lover is like a sachet of myrrh lying between my breasts.
14 He is like a bouquet of sweet henna blossoms from the vineyards of En-gedi.
15 How beautiful you are, my darling, how beautiful! Your eyes are like doves.
16 You are so handsome, my love, pleasing beyond words! The soft grass is our bed;
17 fragrant cedar branches are the beams of our house, and pleasant smelling firs are the rafters.

The Right Place

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Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“God uses detours to take you to the place you were meant to be.”~TB

Detour

Don’t be dismayed when your plans are altered, or negative experiences change your destination. God uses those moments to place you where you can be of good use. Though we make plans, God will steer us where we ultimately need to be. So when detours arise, rejoice in where God sends you. Know that His plans are infinitely more Devine and accurate than your own.

Destination

Humans a egocentric in that we want what we want, when we want it. Fortunately for us, God knows what we need. A detour may seem inconvenient, but God may be using that moment for you to uplift and encourage a brother or sister in need. Do not forget that we are all part of one body and God will use of to help each other. So when changes arise, you are in the right place, just consult God for the mission. Chances are you’re being called to serve a greater purpose.

Today’s Question

Are you in the right place or is everything an inconvenience?

Enjoy the reading

Proverbs 28

1 The wicked run away when no one is chasing them, but the godly are as bold as lions.
2 When there is moral rot within a nation, its government topples easily. But wise and knowledgeable leaders bring stability.
3A poor person who oppresses the poor is like a pounding rain that destroys the crops.
4 To reject the law is to praise the wicked; to obey the law is to fight them.
5 Evil people don’t understand justice, but those who follow the LORD understand completely.
6 Better to be poor and honest than to be dishonest and rich.
7 Young people who obey the law are wise; those with wild friends bring shame to their parents.
8 Income from charging high interest rates will end up in the pocket of someone who is kind to the poor.
9 God detests the prayers of a person who ignores the law.
10 Those who lead good people along an evil path will fall into their own trap, but the honest will inherit good things.
11Rich people may think they are wise, but a poor person with discernment can see right through them.
12 When the godly succeed, everyone is glad. When the wicked take charge, people go into hiding.
13 People who conceal their sins will not prosper, but if they confess and turn from them, they will receive mercy.
14 Blessed are those who fear to do wrong, but the stubborn are headed for serious trouble.
15 A wicked ruler is as dangerous to the poor as a roaring lion or an attacking bear.
16 A ruler with no understanding will oppress his people, but one who hates corruption will have a long life.
17A murderer’s tormented conscience will drive him into the grave. Don’t protect him!
18 The blameless will be rescued from harm, but the crooked will be suddenly destroyed.
19 A hard worker has plenty of food, but a person who chases fantasies ends up in poverty.
20The trustworthy person will get a rich reward, but a person who wants quick riches will get into trouble.
21 Showing partiality is never good, yet some will do wrong for a mere piece of bread.
22 Greedy people try to get rich quick but don’t realize they’re headed for poverty.
23 In the end, people appreciate honest criticism far more than flattery.
24Anyone who steals from his father and mother and says, “What’s wrong with that?” is no better than a murderer.
25 Greed causes fighting; trusting the LORD leads to prosperity.
26 Those who trust their own insight are foolish, but anyone who walks in wisdom is safe.
27 Whoever gives to the poor will lack nothing, but those who close their eyes to poverty will be cursed.
28 When the wicked take charge, people go into hiding. When the wicked meet disaster, the godly flourish.

 

Reject

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Hi Peeps,

Today’s Quote

“Being made new in Christ means rejecting your old ways and adopting the lifestyle of Christ”~TB

Change

Now that the Truth has been revealed to you, you are marked, cemented in God’s stable. This means that you have to reject previous sins, thoughts, and actions. The same behavior that got you into a turbulent lifestyle cannot remain when you are made new in Christ. You can try to cling onto your past life, but what you will find is the behavior of yesterday will never grant you the peace you experience in Christ. This is because the Holy Spirit within you can never find satisfaction in the fleshly sinful practices of man. No, it requires Biblical fuel to thrive. Save yourself some time and headache by adopting the principles and behaviors of Christ.

Exist

Freedom in Christ means existing in the Holy peace that a Christlike mentality brings. This can only happen when you let your guard down and allow Him to lead your life. If you can continually check your ego and pride at the door, you will eventually see that what you were trying to defend was not yours to defend at all! Allow God to handle your affairs. Live in peace among one another and do not let the judgments of man dictate your perception of the Lord. Focus on Him to learn how to Biblically move in this world and you will see that life isn’t as chaotic and random as the world would let you believe.

Today’s Question

Are you hitting your head trying to keep a dead lifestyle or are you reading to adopt your new life?

Enjoy the reading

Psalm 112

1 Praise the LORD ! How joyful are those who fear the LORD and delight in obeying his commands. 
2 Their children will be successful everywhere; an entire generation of godly people will be blessed. 
3 They themselves will be wealthy, and their good deeds will last forever. 
4 Light shines in the darkness for the godly. They are generous, compassionate, and righteous.
5 Good comes to those who lend money generously and conduct their business fairly. 
6 Such people will not be overcome by evil. Those who are righteous will be long remembered. 
7 They do not fear bad news; they confidently trust the LORD to care for them. 
8 They are confident and fearless and can face their foes triumphantly. 
9 They share freely and give generously to those in need. Their good deeds will be remembered forever. They will have influence and honor. 
10 The wicked will see this and be infuriated. They will grind their teeth in anger; they will slink away, their hopes thwarted.

 

Second

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Hi Peeps,
Today’s Quote
“The new things that God shows me each day, every hour, or second are so subtle, sublime, simple, yet extremely complex, I am rendered overwhelmed with joy, awe, and delighted with anticipation for the next lesson, session, and second.”  ~  Jon Barnes

Stay

Stay in the second with God so that the patience you receive from His wisdom will feel like an eternity.  Since God is the master of all time, space, matter, and Spirit, we are all like dust particles floating lightly in the light, fully exposed, recorded, and documented, like babies being born and washed by the nurse Angels from Heaven.  Just be cool, God has your back.

Muddy

God is always wiping us down like little babies because we refuse to be potty trained with the Word of God. Once we are mildly proficient in the task, soap, and water is an ideal method of hygiene to be used each time you visit the restroom.  Still, God uses the Blood of Christ to wash away our ignorance, sin, and wickedness each day, like a much-needed shower for pigs wrestling in the mud. Get in the habit of repenting each day for your shortcomings, because it keeps you humble, honest, and focused on improving your spiritual, mental, and physical life.

Fresh

Use the Blood of Christ to wash, humble, and follow the logic of God’s Spirit in how you should speak, behave, listen, work, love, and approach new goals, objectives, challenges, and issues.  The new things that God is showing you each second of the day is NOT new to Him! So trust Him. Stay fresh in His Ideas and you will clean up your own mess with each second that you walk with God.
Today’s Question
Why are you trying to play God, by thinking that you are always correct in your assertions, thoughts, ideas, feelings, and limited wisdom, with every second that you breathe?
Enjoy The Reading
 

Psalm 23 

A psalm of David.

The Lord is my shepherd;
    I have all that I need.
He lets me rest in green meadows;
    he leads me beside peaceful streams.
    He renews my strength.
He guides me along right paths,
    bringing honor to his name.
Even when I walk
    through the darkest valley,[a]
I will not be afraid,
    for you are close beside me.
Your rod and your staff
    protect and comfort me.
You prepare a feast for me
    in the presence of my enemies.
You honor me by anointing my head with oil.
    My cup overflows with blessings.
Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me
    all the days of my life,
and I will live in the house of the Lord
    forever.

Love,

Jonathan

People

people-2557396_1920.jpgHi Peeps,
Today’s Quote
“Many people misuse, misguide, lie, cheat, steal, and purposefully misplace God’s Truth to distort reality to benefit themselves, which provides a negative relationship, role model, and reality for yourself, kids, parents, grandparents, family, spouse, other people, and God.”  ~  Jon Barnes

Never

Never put yourself in a negative position to where your own spouse, children, family, and friends lose respect for you and the choices that you make each day in your life.  Your laziness and deceit smell like the poor work you put into your relationship with God and your family. The fruit of your work will be as rotten as your motives, mindset, health, body, and willingness to change negative habits. When you stop exercising God’s faith and principles you will behave like the negative characters in the Bible.

Stop

Stop thinking that you know it all or need to see and know everything.  We are not God.  When you are alone and isolated in your stupor and sin, pray, repent, and think again on your own motives of honesty to correct your behavior. Why sabotage your own life?  Evil will blind and bind you up with the devil’s cause, without you even knowing it.  Do not live in isolation, ignorance, and trashy mess.

Learning

Admitting that you are wrong and changing your wicked ways is the beginning steps of true love, repentance, and obedience to God and other people.  Since God will judge your behavior, the effects of your lifestyle will be seen by all who know you, as your mess will be all over your house and into the streets.  Your sin will be a public embarrassment unto yourself unless you learn to obey the truth and stop living in your personal lies!
Today’s Question
Why are you such a hypocrite, who is unwilling to change, repent, or discuss terms of improvement?
Enjoy The Reading

Job 42 

Job Responds to the Lord

42 Then Job replied to the Lord:
“I know that you can do anything,
    and no one can stop you.
You asked, ‘Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorance?’
    It is I—and I was talking about things I knew nothing about,
    things far too wonderful for me.
You said, ‘Listen and I will speak!
    I have some questions for you,
    and you must answer them.’
I had only heard about you before,
    but now I have seen you with my own eyes.
I take back everything I said,
    and I sit in dust and ashes to show my repentance.”

Conclusion: The Lord Blesses Job

After the Lord had finished speaking to Job, he said to Eliphaz the Temanite: “I am angry with you and your two friends, for you have not spoken accurately about me, as my servant Job has. So take seven bulls and seven rams and go to my servant Job and offer a burnt offering for yourselves. My servant Job will pray for you, and I will accept his prayer on your behalf. I will not treat you as you deserve, for you have not spoken accurately about me, as my servant Job has.” So Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite did as the Lord commanded them, and the Lord accepted Job’s prayer.
10 When Job prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his fortunes. In fact, the Lordgave him twice as much as before! 11 Then all his brothers, sisters, and former friends came and feasted with him in his home. And they consoled him and comforted him because of all the trials the Lord had brought against him. And each of them brought him a gift of money[a] and a gold ring.
12 So the Lord blessed Job in the second half of his life even more than in the beginning. For now he had 14,000 sheep, 6,000 camels, 1,000 teams of oxen, and 1,000 female donkeys. 13 He also gave Job seven more sons and three more daughters. 14 He named his first daughter Jemimah, the second Keziah, and the third Keren-happuch. 15 In all the land no women were as lovely as the daughters of Job. And their father put them into his will along with their brothers.
16 Job lived 140 years after that, living to see four generations of his children and grandchildren. 17 Then he died, an old man who had lived a long, full life.

Love,

Jonathan

Easy

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Hi Peeps,
Today’s Quote
“It is never easy to hear about death, murder, overdose, abuse, ignorance, mayhem and evil that befalls many people.” Jon Barnes

Why

Why are we still dealing with not implementing and using the good solutions doing the right things for ourselves and families?  It is a challenge just to follow the rules and regulations to make things fair for everyone. I get it.  However, it is easy to follow simple steps of organized kindness, educated movements, and musical movements in the direction of hope and justice.

Pretend

There is no reason to fake who you are, so just be good and do the easy steps of improving your life with God.  The reality of positive change comes quickly and the fruit of your love is explosive.  It may seem like evil is winning the battle, but that is just not the case.  Death is the conclusion of all evil and wicked people will meet their maker soon enough. God has an easy solution about justice in His Own Time, soon for all of us. 

Alternative

Notice the route and path of wicked people and go in the opposite direction to follow God.  That is the only alternative.  Bless God for giving us a mind to do good, prepare, and work out our faith in Him.  It is refreshing to hear and see the results of the good work and stories I read about people all around the world.  Be thankful for the ease of how God operates and cares for us all.  Count our challenges as all joy, with a smile of thanksgiving.
Today’s Question
Is it that easy for you to become negative, mad, and out of control, as you always assume the worst in your situations and challenges?
Enjoy The Reading
 

2 Kings 25 

25 So on January 15,[a] during the ninth year of Zedekiah’s reign, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon led his entire army against Jerusalem. They surrounded the city and built siege ramps against its walls. Jerusalem was kept under siege until the eleventh year of King Zedekiah’s reign.
By July 18 in the eleventh year of Zedekiah’s reign,[b] the famine in the city had become very severe, and the last of the food was entirely gone. Then a section of the city wall was broken down. Since the city was surrounded by the Babylonians,[c] the soldiers waited for nightfall and escaped[d] through the gate between the two walls behind the king’s garden. Then they headed toward the Jordan Valley.[e]
But the Babylonian[f] troops chased the king and overtook him on the plains of Jericho, for his men had all deserted him and scattered. They captured the king and took him to the king of Babylon at Riblah, where they pronounced judgment upon Zedekiah. They made Zedekiah watch as they slaughtered his sons. Then they gouged out Zedekiah’s eyes, bound him in bronze chains, and led him away to Babylon.

The Temple Destroyed

On August 14 of that year,[g] which was the nineteenth year of King Nebuchadnezzar’s reign, Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard and an official of the Babylonian king, arrived in Jerusalem. He burned down the Temple of the Lord, the royal palace, and all the houses of Jerusalem. He destroyed all the important buildings[h] in the city. 10 Then he supervised the entire Babylonian army as they tore down the walls of Jerusalem on every side. 11 Then Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, took as exiles the rest of the people who remained in the city, the defectors who had declared their allegiance to the king of Babylon, and the rest of the population. 12 But the captain of the guard allowed some of the poorest people to stay behind to care for the vineyards and fields.
13 The Babylonians broke up the bronze pillars in front of the Lord’s Temple, the bronze water carts, and the great bronze basin called the Sea, and they carried all the bronze away to Babylon. 14 They also took all the ash buckets, shovels, lamp snuffers, ladles, and all the other bronze articles used for making sacrifices at the Temple. 15 The captain of the guard also took the incense burners and basins, and all the other articles made of pure gold or silver.
16 The weight of the bronze from the two pillars, the Sea, and the water carts was too great to be measured. These things had been made for the Lord’s Temple in the days of Solomon.17 Each of the pillars was 27 feet[i] tall. The bronze capital on top of each pillar was 7 1⁄2 feet[j]high and was decorated with a network of bronze pomegranates all the way around.
18 Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, took with him as prisoners Seraiah the high priest, Zephaniah the priest of the second rank, and the three chief gatekeepers. 19 And from among the people still hiding in the city, he took an officer who had been in charge of the Judean army; five of the king’s personal advisers; the army commander’s chief secretary, who was in charge of recruitment; and sixty other citizens. 20 Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, took them all to the king of Babylon at Riblah. 21 And there at Riblah, in the land of Hamath, the king of Babylon had them all put to death. So the people of Judah were sent into exile from their land.

Gedaliah Governs in Judah

22 Then King Nebuchadnezzar appointed Gedaliah son of Ahikam and grandson of Shaphan as governor over the people he had left in Judah. 23 When all the army commanders and their men learned that the king of Babylon had appointed Gedaliah as governor, they went to see him at Mizpah. These included Ishmael son of Nethaniah, Johanan son of Kareah, Seraiah son of Tanhumeth the Netophathite, Jezaniah[k] son of the Maacathite, and all their men.
24 Gedaliah vowed to them that the Babylonian officials meant them no harm. “Don’t be afraid of them. Live in the land and serve the king of Babylon, and all will go well for you,” he promised.
25 But in midautumn of that year,[l] Ishmael son of Nethaniah and grandson of Elishama, who was a member of the royal family, went to Mizpah with ten men and killed Gedaliah. He also killed all the Judeans and Babylonians who were with him at Mizpah.
26 Then all the people of Judah, from the least to the greatest, as well as the army commanders, fled in panic to Egypt, for they were afraid of what the Babylonians would do to them.

Hope for Israel’s Royal Line

27 In the thirty-seventh year of the exile of King Jehoiachin of Judah, Evil-merodach ascended to the Babylonian throne. He was kind to[m] Jehoiachin and released him[n] from prison on April 2 of that year.[o] 28 He spoke kindly to Jehoiachin and gave him a higher place than all the other exiled kings in Babylon. 29 He supplied Jehoiachin with new clothes to replace his prison garb and allowed him to dine in the king’s presence for the rest of his life. 30 So the king gave him a regular food allowance as long as he lived.
Love,
Jonatahn

Refuse

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Hi Peeps,
Today’s Quote
“Refuse to do evil or behave wickedly, since God can see and hear your every thought and deed.” ~ Jon Barnes 

Wicked

Use kind words and good works to change your own wicked behavior and you will learn how to help others improve their own problems. Being right with soft and humble answers is as important as an evil person repenting for their sins. By the grace of God, we all go, live, breath and have our being and intellect, which allows our hearts and thoughts to have an opportunity and method of repentance.

Talk

Your talk, faith, and walk with God will inspire others each day when you pour your own life into the hands of God with all you have. Then God will heal your family and people all around you because of your obedience and not your intellectual sacrifices. Spiritual talk and walk require humility, long-suffering, meekness, kindness, love patience, fairness, and justice from God, through your heart, life, mouth, hands, and work. Indeed, God will bless you with honor and rewards in heaven, forever.

Indeed

You will have your honor and rewards here on earth as a show before people, which will profit you little. Praying in your closet, doing the Will of God, and keeping your mouth closed will move the hand of God and help the lives of many people. After listening, reading, thinking, and meditating,    God will show or tell you what to do. Your honest efforts and motives will become reality in your daily practice of love and devotion to your faith, good work, and commitment to God. Refuse wicked talk and selfish deeds.
Today’s Question
Have you stepped out of line with God?
Enjoy The Reading

1 Samuel 25 

The Death of Samuel

25 Now Samuel died, and all Israel gathered for his funeral. They buried him at his house in Ramah.

Nabal Angers David

Then David moved down to the wilderness of Maon.[a] There was a wealthy man from Maon who owned property near the town of Carmel. He had 3,000 sheep and 1,000 goats, and it was sheep-shearing time. This man’s name was Nabal, and his wife, Abigail, was a sensible and beautiful woman. But Nabal, a descendant of Caleb, was crude and mean in all his dealings.
When David heard that Nabal was shearing his sheep, he sent ten of his young men to Carmel with this message for Nabal: “Peace and prosperity to you, your family, and everything you own! I am told that it is sheep-shearing time. While your shepherds stayed among us near Carmel, we never harmed them, and nothing was ever stolen from them.Ask your own men, and they will tell you this is true. So would you be kind to us, since we have come at a time of celebration? Please share any provisions you might have on hand with us and with your friend David.” David’s young men gave this message to Nabal in David’s name, and they waited for a reply.
10 “Who is this fellow David?” Nabal sneered to the young men. “Who does this son of Jesse think he is? There are lots of servants these days who run away from their masters. 11 Should I take my bread and my water and my meat that I’ve slaughtered for my shearers and give it to a band of outlaws who come from who knows where?”
12 So David’s young men returned and told him what Nabal had said. 13 “Get your swords!” was David’s reply as he strapped on his own. Then 400 men started off with David, and 200 remained behind to guard their equipment.
14 Meanwhile, one of Nabal’s servants went to Abigail and told her, “David sent messengers from the wilderness to greet our master, but he screamed insults at them. 15 These men have been very good to us, and we never suffered any harm from them. Nothing was stolen from us the whole time they were with us. 16 In fact, day and night they were like a wall of protection to us and the sheep. 17 You need to know this and figure out what to do, for there is going to be trouble for our master and his whole family. He’s so ill-tempered that no one can even talk to him!”
18 Abigail wasted no time. She quickly gathered 200 loaves of bread, two wineskins full of wine, five sheep that had been slaughtered, nearly a bushel[b] of roasted grain, 100 clusters of raisins, and 200 fig cakes. She packed them on donkeys 19 and said to her servants, “Go on ahead. I will follow you shortly.” But she didn’t tell her husband Nabal what she was doing.
20 As she was riding her donkey into a mountain ravine, she saw David and his men coming toward her. 21 David had just been saying, “A lot of good it did to help this fellow. We protected his flocks in the wilderness, and nothing he owned was lost or stolen. But he has repaid me evil for good. 22 May God strike me and kill me[c] if even one man of his household is still alive tomorrow morning!”

Abigail Intercedes for Nabal

23 When Abigail saw David, she quickly got off her donkey and bowed low before him. 24 She fell at his feet and said, “I accept all blame in this matter, my lord. Please listen to what I have to say. 25 I know Nabal is a wicked and ill-tempered man; please don’t pay any attention to him. He is a fool, just as his name suggests.[d] But I never even saw the young men you sent.
26 “Now, my lord, as surely as the Lord lives and you yourself live, since the Lord has kept you from murdering and taking vengeance into your own hands, let all your enemies and those who try to harm you be as cursed as Nabal is. 27 And here is a present that I, your servant, have brought to you and your young men. 28 Please forgive me if I have offended you in any way. The Lord will surely reward you with a lasting dynasty, for you are fighting the Lord’s battles. And you have not done wrong throughout your entire life.
29 “Even when you are chased by those who seek to kill you, your life is safe in the care of the Lord your God, secure in his treasure pouch! But the lives of your enemies will disappear like stones shot from a sling! 30 When the Lord has done all he promised and has made you leader of Israel, 31 don’t let this be a blemish on your record. Then your conscience won’t have to bear the staggering burden of needless bloodshed and vengeance. And when the Lord has done these great things for you, please remember me, your servant!”
32 David replied to Abigail, “Praise the Lord, the God of Israel, who has sent you to meet me today! 33 Thank God for your good sense! Bless you for keeping me from murder and from carrying out vengeance with my own hands. 34 For I swear by the Lord, the God of Israel, who has kept me from hurting you, that if you had not hurried out to meet me, not one of Nabal’s men would still be alive tomorrow morning.” 35 Then David accepted her present and told her, “Return home in peace. I have heard what you said. We will not kill your husband.”
36 When Abigail arrived home, she found that Nabal was throwing a big party and was celebrating like a king. He was very drunk, so she didn’t tell him anything about her meeting with David until dawn the next day. 37 In the morning when Nabal was sober, his wife told him what had happened. As a result he had a stroke,[e] and he lay paralyzed on his bed like a stone. 38 About ten days later, the Lord struck him, and he died.

David Marries Abigail

39 When David heard that Nabal was dead, he said, “Praise the Lord, who has avenged the insult I received from Nabal and has kept me from doing it myself. Nabal has received the punishment for his sin.” Then David sent messengers to Abigail to ask her to become his wife.
40 When the messengers arrived at Carmel, they told Abigail, “David has sent us to take you back to marry him.”
41 She bowed low to the ground and responded, “I, your servant, would be happy to marry David. I would even be willing to become a slave, washing the feet of his servants!” 42 Quickly getting ready, she took along five of her servant girls as attendants, mounted her donkey, and went with David’s messengers. And so she became his wife. 43 David also married Ahinoam from Jezreel, making both of them his wives. 44 Saul, meanwhile, had given his daughter Michal, David’s wife, to a man from Gallim named Palti son of Laish.
Love,
Jonathan

Embraceable you 

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Hi Peeps,
Today’s Quote
“Make what God wants for your life embraceable from your heart, to train your mind and body, so that your soul rests comfortably for eternity in God.” ~ Jon Barnes

A Mess

You know how much of a mess you have made with your life and no one should have to tell you. Clean up your own mess by allowing God to come into your life, make changes, and improve your focus on your personal clean up job.  Embrace the moment of redemption and work your faith in God.

Filthy

Why do you live in filth day after day, choosing not to clean up and maintain order and organization in your life? Nothing has changed with you except for the next day, by doing the same old stuff that doesn’t work. We blame God for our own errors and pretend to have answers for other people. Foolishness is fun of filthy actions, thoughts, words, and deeds that will keep you jobless, homeless, and hopeless.

Cleanliness

Notice what needs to be cleaned in your life and stick to the plan.  God will not bless your dirty, unfinished mess. Complete the cleanup job and maintain your status with God’s protection, insight, enlightenment, and joy, so that you can love others unconditionally. Embrace who you are in God and God will clean up your act because you are following His instructions and not your own imagination of stupidity.
Today’s Question
Only a fool thinks that they are always right in their own sight, pretending to embrace God for change.
Enjoy The Reading

Judges 9 

Abimelek

Abimelek son of Jerub-Baal went to his mother’s brothers in Shechem and said to them and to all his mother’s clan, “Ask all the citizens of Shechem, ‘Which is better for you: to have all seventy of Jerub-Baal’s sons rule over you, or just one man?’ Remember, I am your flesh and blood.”
When the brothers repeated all this to the citizens of Shechem, they were inclined to follow Abimelek, for they said, “He is related to us.” They gave him seventy shekels[a] of silver from the temple of Baal-Berith, and Abimelek used it to hire reckless scoundrels, who became his followers. He went to his father’s home in Ophrah and on one stone murdered his seventy brothers, the sons of Jerub-Baal. But Jotham, the youngest son of Jerub-Baal, escaped by hiding. Then all the citizens of Shechem and Beth Millo gathered beside the great tree at the pillar in Shechem to crown Abimelek king.
When Jotham was told about this, he climbed up on the top of Mount Gerizimand shouted to them, “Listen to me, citizens of Shechem, so that God may listen to you. One day the trees went out to anoint a king for themselves. They said to the olive tree, ‘Be our king.’
“But the olive tree answered, ‘Should I give up my oil, by which both gods and humans are honored, to hold sway over the trees?’
10 “Next, the trees said to the fig tree, ‘Come and be our king.’
11 “But the fig tree replied, ‘Should I give up my fruit, so good and sweet, to hold sway over the trees?’
12 “Then the trees said to the vine, ‘Come and be our king.’
13 “But the vine answered, ‘Should I give up my wine, which cheers both gods and humans, to hold sway over the trees?’
14 “Finally all the trees said to the thornbush, ‘Come and be our king.’
15 “The thornbush said to the trees, ‘If you really want to anoint me king over you, come and take refuge in my shade; but if not, then let fire come out of the thornbush and consume the cedars of Lebanon!’
16 “Have you acted honorably and in good faith by making Abimelek king? Have you been fair to Jerub-Baal and his family? Have you treated him as he deserves?17 Remember that my father fought for you and risked his life to rescue you from the hand of Midian. 18 But today you have revolted against my father’s family. You have murdered his seventy sons on a single stone and have made Abimelek, the son of his female slave, king over the citizens of Shechem because he is related to you. 19 So have you acted honorably and in good faith toward Jerub-Baal and his family today? If you have, may Abimelek be your joy, and may you be his, too!20 But if you have not, let fire come out from Abimelek and consume you, the citizens of Shechem and Beth Millo, and let fire come out from you, the citizens of Shechem and Beth Millo, and consume Abimelek!”
21 Then Jotham fled, escaping to Beer, and he lived there because he was afraid of his brother Abimelek.
22 After Abimelek had governed Israel three years, 23 God stirred up animositybetween Abimelek and the citizens of Shechem so that they acted treacherously against Abimelek. 24 God did this in order that the crime against Jerub-Baal’s seventy sons, the shedding of their blood, might be avenged on their brother Abimelek and on the citizens of Shechem, who had helped him murder his brothers. 25 In opposition to him these citizens of Shechem set men on the hilltops to ambush and rob everyone who passed by, and this was reported to Abimelek.
26 Now Gaal son of Ebed moved with his clan into Shechem, and its citizens put their confidence in him. 27 After they had gone out into the fields and gathered the grapes and trodden them, they held a festival in the temple of their god. While they were eating and drinking, they cursed Abimelek. 28 Then Gaal son of Ebed said, “Who is Abimelek, and why should we Shechemites be subject to him? Isn’t he Jerub-Baal’s son, and isn’t Zebul his deputy? Serve the family of Hamor,Shechem’s father! Why should we serve Abimelek? 29 If only this people were under my command! Then I would get rid of him. I would say to Abimelek, ‘Call out your whole army!’”[b]
30 When Zebul the governor of the city heard what Gaal son of Ebed said, he was very angry. 31 Under cover he sent messengers to Abimelek, saying, “Gaal son of Ebed and his clan have come to Shechem and are stirring up the city against you.32 Now then, during the night you and your men should come and lie in wait in the fields. 33 In the morning at sunrise, advance against the city. When Gaal and his men come out against you, seize the opportunity to attack them.”
34 So Abimelek and all his troops set out by night and took up concealed positions near Shechem in four companies. 35 Now Gaal son of Ebed had gone out and was standing at the entrance of the city gate just as Abimelek and his troops came out from their hiding place.
36 When Gaal saw them, he said to Zebul, “Look, people are coming down from the tops of the mountains!”
Zebul replied, “You mistake the shadows of the mountains for men.”
37 But Gaal spoke up again: “Look, people are coming down from the central hill,[c]and a company is coming from the direction of the diviners’ tree.”
38 Then Zebul said to him, “Where is your big talk now, you who said, ‘Who is Abimelek that we should be subject to him?’ Aren’t these the men you ridiculed?Go out and fight them!”
39 So Gaal led out[d] the citizens of Shechem and fought Abimelek. 40 Abimelek chased him all the way to the entrance of the gate, and many were killed as they fled. 41 Then Abimelek stayed in Arumah, and Zebul drove Gaal and his clan out of Shechem.
42 The next day the people of Shechem went out to the fields, and this was reported to Abimelek. 43 So he took his men, divided them into three companiesand set an ambush in the fields. When he saw the people coming out of the city, he rose to attack them. 44 Abimelek and the companies with him rushed forward to a position at the entrance of the city gate. Then two companies attacked those in the fields and struck them down. 45 All that day Abimelek pressed his attack against the city until he had captured it and killed its people. Then he destroyed the city and scattered salt over it.
46 On hearing this, the citizens in the tower of Shechem went into the stronghold of the temple of El-Berith. 47 When Abimelek heard that they had assembled there,48 he and all his men went up Mount Zalmon. He took an ax and cut off some branches, which he lifted to his shoulders. He ordered the men with him, “Quick! Do what you have seen me do!” 49 So all the men cut branches and followed Abimelek. They piled them against the stronghold and set it on fire with the people still inside. So all the people in the tower of Shechem, about a thousand men and women, also died.
50 Next Abimelek went to Thebez and besieged it and captured it. 51 Inside the city, however, was a strong tower, to which all the men and women—all the people of the city—had fled. They had locked themselves in and climbed up on the tower roof. 52 Abimelek went to the tower and attacked it. But as he approached the entrance to the tower to set it on fire, 53 a woman dropped an upper millstone on his head and cracked his skull.
54 Hurriedly he called to his armor-bearer, “Draw your sword and kill me, so that they can’t say, ‘A woman killed him.’” So his servant ran him through, and he died.55 When the Israelites saw that Abimelek was dead, they went home.
56 Thus God repaid the wickedness that Abimelek had done to his father by murdering his seventy brothers. 57 God also made the people of Shechem pay for all their wickedness. The curse of Jotham son of Jerub-Baal came on them.
Love,
Jonathan