Ever After (Part Five)
(Click here to listen to the sixth Ruth teaching)
Verse of the Week
“…NO ONE TAKES YOUR JOY AWAY FROM YOU.” John 16v22 NASB
More Words from the Father
From my Heart
Pages from the past: March 1987
Waiting…so much of our life is spent waiting.
Such a lot of our time is spent on boring, mundane details.
Yet fulfillment does not come
from excitement, adventure, challenge, importance;
but from doing the will of the Father
with all our heart and soul.
The purpose of my life is not to do something
big and important for God,
but to empty myself,
to be a “clay vessel,” as it were.
To be used and used up by God
in everything I do.
Thus the mundane is of eternal importance,
the boring, an adventure in spiritual enlightenment.
The Creator of the Universe, the Savior of all peoples,
the Comforter of our hearts-working
in and through me!
Thank You Lord.
From my heart,
When Does Life Begin?
Dare I answer this question? No, definitely not. Let the scientists, biologists, politicians, and activists argue, blog, chant, and pass their laws. I wouldn’t dare poke my head in their conversations.
But God, the creator of life, does dare.
I’ve listed a few of the Scriptures most frequently referred to which give God’s answer to the question:
1. Psalm 139V13-15 -The Psalmist sings of this life-affirming truth-
“For You created my inmost being
You knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from You
when I was made in the secret place,
When I was woven together in the depth of the earth,
Your eyes saw my unformed body.
All the days ordained for me
Were written in Your book
Before one of them came to be.”
2. Luke 1v44 -Elizabeth tells Mary of her unborn child’s response to the presence of Jesus-
“As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears,
The baby in my womb leaped for joy.”
3. Jeremiah 1v5 -The prophet Jeremiah recognized God’s appointment before birth-
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
Before you were born I set you apart…”
4. Isaiah 49v1 -The prophet Isaiah describes his calling before birth-
“Before I was born the Lord called me…”
The Scriptures make it crystal clear that life begins at conception, blossoms at birth, and bears the image of the Creator throughout all the days of our lives. So we’ll let the talking heads argue all they want while we celebrate God’s affirmation of the worth of every human life.
Seemingly tacked on to the end of our story is this list of names. Not much of a read, just five short verses - one long sentence. We usually let our eyes just sort of skip this part. Genealogies seem like simply a list of hard to pronounce names, of little interest to our hurried lives.
There are ten names brought to our attention. And each of these names represents a real man, with a real wife, and real kids. A family. And in every family lives a story - God’s story-involving love and laughter, dreams and drama. His-Story.
Just as you and I cry out to be known and seen as significant, so these stories of real people call from the pages of our Bibles to be examined and explored. Who were these people? How is it that their lives followed a path that put their families into the back story of the King of Israel? They begot royalty. Somehow they laid a foundation for future greatness.
Let’s take some time this week to turn aside from our usual rush and dig up some of these jewels of wisdom dropped around the treasure of God’s Word. Let’s snoop and explore, reading between the lines and coloring in the lives of these men who God chose to mention in the closing lines of Ruth.
You might just discover your own keys to the Kingdom.