Saturday, May 30, 2009

Nehemiah 12-13

Day 150

Ah Saturday mornings....the sun is coming through the blinds, Hannalee was up a bit ago...her daddy rescued her from the crib! :)  And of course I'm up and ready to go walk at the park...but who is not up yet...JJ of all people!!   I"m dressed and ready for all of us to go....he's not.   And he doesn't wake up good.  He wakes up grumpy and starving....ready to eat honey and bread!!!  We might not make it out the door!  We'll see.......until then I"ll blog! :)   We've finished Nehemiah!  Tadaaaaaaa!

Chapter 12  another list ......this is of the priests and Levites from two different time periods....a master list of 21 households followed in each case by the name of that head of house. The dedication of the city wall is told in first person narrative. Dusty noticed that last week as we were reading....most of this book has been in first person "I".....a nice change of pace and flow to the reading.  The community  together had achieved their goal of re-building the wall....God made them rejoice!!  The time for dedication of the walls was also a time of rededication to God:  "This is our God forever and ever."  Celebration is more than making a lot of noise or even reading thanks to God.  It is also a time for witness and praise, in which the community shares its experience with those who are far away. some say that Psalm 147 was written for the dedication of the restored all of Jerusalem.  Read it and see what YOU think! :)   Did you notice the new pics??  Scroll all the way down to see them.  

Chapter 13  Then comes along Tobiah!!!  Good grief!!  The misuse of the temple already!   Nehemiah has been judge over Judah for 12 years and continues to encourage the Israelites to stay true to God.  In the meantime, he returns to the king in Persia and then travels back to Jerusalem only to discover that the people have already reverted in their ways......back to ignoring God.  The people's greed has put their work into overtime and Nehemiah is mad!  The sabbath had been established for good reason and with focus their relationship on the covenant with God.  But the people violate it and God!!!  Lucky for us, today we live under the covenant of grace.....we are to concentrate on God everyday!   And then, out of love, we are to CHOOSE to set aside time to worship the Lord!   Nehemiah prayed that God would remember him with favor and remember everything for good.   This was his only hope!  

Remember me with favor, O my God!!!

tomorrow:  Esther 1-5

Friday, May 29, 2009

Nehemiah 10-11

Day 149

Well.....we've been without internet ALL DAY pretty much!!    It's finally back on, kids are in bed.  So, here at 8:20 I"m blogging......8:20PM!! :)  

Chapter 10  Well, I think in yesterday's blog I got a bit ahead of myself because this is the  chapter where the people reaffirm the covenant and sign, seal and deliver it!  :) They've got an oath and a curse though now.  The oath is that they have made many promises to God.  The curse is that they have to keep them now.  They will have to choose how they will live....with honesty, purity and integrity.  What are the odds that they, like we, are going to keep the promises?  They live with such intention and hope and determination to keep the promises,but no matter how hard they try, they just can't do it.  And neither can we.  We all try.  We all mean well.   We just fail.  Why?  Because we are human!!!  That's it.  We just can't be perfect.  We just have to ask for forgiveness and start all over again.   

Chapter 11  Another list!  These are the people probably living in Jerusalem.    These are not just refugees, these are descendants of Joshua and the high priests.   This is just a random list.  The names have been preserved because the people are conscious of their roots.....who they are, where they come from and WHOSE they are!  They are well aware of who they are in God's company.  Never forget who you are and WHOSE you are!!  Be God's!  :)

Tomorrow:  chapters 12-13 to finish Nehemiah....isn't he great!!  :)  

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Nehemiah 8-9

Day 148 the hair doesn't look EXACTLY like what I had envisioned, but its good.....shorter and easier! THAT was the goal!

AND....we didn't finish the book of Nehemiah.  There are still more chapters! Sorry.  

Chapter 8 The wall is complete and the people realize they have participated in a wonderful, if not miraculous, event!  They respond by wanting more of God...wanting to know what God wants of them so they ask Ezra to read God's law.  ALL the people are assembled to hear this reading.  Ezra stands on a platform and opens the book to read.  Ezra praises God and the people shout and lift their arms in praise yelling AMEN!!!!    Verse 10 says the day was sacred and the joy of the Lord is their strength!! Good and great holy words to hold on to!!!!  T he people realize, throughout the reading, how far they have failed God and strayed from His word.  They are greatly grieved.  

Chapter 9    The Israelites confess their sin and repent.  Their repentance is genuine and the wrongs are righted and the people turn to God in confession and worship.  The people recall all of God's work of creation, recalls his loving and faithful dealings with their rebellious actions since the days of Abraham!  They sign a covenant and make promises of marriage, sabbath, and taxes, tithes and offerings....they "will obey all the Lord commands."  They have promised not to neglect the House of God.!   What do YOU promise to God today?

tomorrow:  chapters 10-11

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Nehemiah 7

Day 147

going to the city today!!!!   Going to the "female" doctor....YUCK YUCK YUCK!  Getting a haircut though too....YEA YEA YEA!   I've been threatening to go "Suze Orman" short....go google her.   We'll see if I'm really that brave or just come home with a shorter version of my hair now.  We'll see....any bets anyone?  

Chapter 7    Oh the names of biblical proportion!   We just read and stumble through them.  This is a list of the exiles who returned.  The work had been completed on the temple, the orders had been given and the duties were assigned.  Now, Nehemiah decides to create a register of all the families present.  In doing so though, he finds an earlier listing.  This list is almost identical to the one found in Ezra 2.  

That's all folks! :)  Be loved and love!  

Tomorrow:  8-10 to finish another book!!  

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Nehemia 1-6

Day 146

Rain, rain, go away.  My stars!      Dusty even got up at 3:30 last night to go check on his chickens.  He was afraid they were drowning!  

Chapters 1-2  The exiles returned home in Ezra and the story now continues.   Nehemia's brother comes from Judah to Persia to visit him at the palace and he asks about the condition of Jerusalem and the situation of the Jewish people.  After learning that the wall has been broken down in Jerusalem, Nehemia weeps.  A city without a wall is open to attack and is considered insignificant.  For weeks Nehemia prays over the situation which has wrought his heart.  God opens a door of opportunity and Nehemiah walks through his fear--as advocating for Jerusalem and asked the king for permission to go rebuild the city.  God ignites a spark of revival in his servant Nehemiah. He returns to Jerusalem with a military escort, inspects the city, and makes a secret plan,

Chapter 3  This is the work of rebuilding the temple on the north side and going counter-clockwise.  Most of the places mentioned are not identifiable today.  But the sheep gate was on the north wall, as well as the fish gate, the tower of ovens.  People of all kinds joined together in the work of rebuilding. The list mentions priests and perfumers, goldsmiths, and merchants, rulers and women too! Nehemiah has inspired others in the rebuilding of the wall.  They are depending on one another to complete the task. 

Chapter 4  There is always opposition among people when there is a building project going on.  Ask any church member! :) In sending Nehemiah to Jerusalem, King Artaxerxes made him governor of Judah and Sanballat is governor of Samaria, which borders Judah and is one of Nehemia's opponents.  Sanballat is threatened by the leadership and presence of Nehemiah but the people can face opposition because they are trying to make positive changes in their circumstances and lives.  Those who feel threatened by the transformation try to dissuade them and taunt them.  Nehemiah and his people refuse to given in to the struggle and instead reaffirm their drive to complete the wall.  They are alert and ready!! They didn't even stop to change their clothes....their faith in a powerful God does not make them blind to the reality of their they pray and act simultaneously...prayer and action go hand in hand.

Chapter 5  At the same time they are facing outside opposition, there is also dissatisfaction within the Jewish community.  Many were suffering great economic hardship.......they have large families and no money to buy good.  Some have mortgaged their land and others have borrowed money to pay the outrageous taxes. Nehemiah took action to set all of that right!  

 Chapter 6     52 days! That is all it took to re-build the temple!! That wall had lain in ruins for 150 years!!!!   Yet the entire reconstruction project took only 52 days.  People tried to get rid of Nehemiah, in hopes that that would stop the construction of the temple.   They tried to get him to leave, they tried intimidation, etc. But they failed to realize one thing....Nehemia and the project was in God's hands!!!   

tomorrow:  chapter 7

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Ezra 8-10

Day 145

The cookout last night was fun.  I was glad we went.  Thanks to our sweet neighbors for letting the dog out....twice! :)  

I'm counting down the days until my appointment on Wednesday to be brave enough to cut my hair.....really short.  It's short now....I want it shorter! :)  Short like Suze Orman...the money/financial guru...we'll see how brave I really am! :)   

Chapter 8   This chapter lists the family heads who were brave enough to return to Jerusalem and rebuild the temple.  Mom made a good comment from her study Bible.   Click on the comment in yesterday's post to read it!  Ezra's party of over 1700 includes priests, laypeople, and somewhat reluctantly, Levites.  They even take over 48,000 pounds of silver and over 7,500 pounds of gold with them as gifts!  Ezra is faced with a long and dangerous journey and boasts in confidence in God.  And in doing so, he can't ask the king for a securtiy escort.  God has to take care of them now!  The phrase, "the hand of the Lord was upon us" occurs six times, in different variations and summarize the life and teaching of Ezra.  He is dedicated and committed to faith in the Lord.

chapter 9    Ezra is great disturbed at the question of mixed marriages.  Since their return, the priest and Levites, rulers and laypeople alike, have intermarried with the "heathen" people around....a thing forbidden by God in Deuteronomy 7 .  it was not an issue of racism, but it was more about leading to idolatry and pagan worship when mingling with "outsiders."  This has already been a major factor in the downfall of the Jewish nation in the past.  So Ezra tears his cloak and clothes and has a broken heart.....he even tears his hair out of his head and his beard.  The pain in his heart must have surpassed the physical pain of his hair being pulled out.  Ezra prays a gut-wrenching prayer, expressing his personal shame and the disgrace and guilt of this unfaithfulness.   God is not offended by Ezra's extremely emotional response.  His passion cues a response for the repentance of the people!  

Chapter 10   The people confess their sins and are remorseful.....perhaps as a reaction/response to Ezra's dramatic play.....maybe it was for show...maybe not....but they got the point.  Ezrai is a wise teacher and finally the Israelites admit they have sinned.  They kno they need to take drastic measures †o demonstrate their repentance.......their send away the women and children!!!!  That is harsh!  but they think that is what needs to be done in order to protect the exiled community from the sins that they committed.   They even spend 3 months investigating certain cases.  The commission is formed and the book ends with a sad list of those found guilty of intermarriage.   It is a legal record of wrongdoings.  But there is hope!   God is a God of love and forgiveness....we just need to confess our sins AND change our behavior!! 

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Ezra 1-7

Day 144

Cough, cough, snort, snort, sneeze, sneeze.  That is the sound at our house.  But we are better! It WAS cough, snort, sneeze, cough, cough; cough, snort, sneeze, cough, cough.  You get the picture.  

Tonight we are going to Edmond to a cookout celebration for one of my kindergartner's....Matthew was in my first class of kindergartner's back in 1996!!!! He is also the kid who went running and screaming out of my room my first day ( I started teaching in the middle of the year because the original teacher took off with a guy she met on the internet) and  saying, "I QUIT THIS SCHOOL--I HATE YOU ALL!"   I became fast friends with his mom to love and help Matthew through kindergarten and we've been friends ever since.   So we are going to his high school graduation celebration party tonight!  

Ezra...well, you have to read 7 chapters in the book of Ezra to ever find out who he is.  But here we are finally in a different book.  Chronicles ended with the destruction of the temple and of Jerusalem and the carrying away of treasure and captives.  The year is 587BC and Nebuchadnezzar took the people into exile in Babylon.  The Jewish nation is over and gone.  Ezra is a supplement to Chronicles and tells about how the returned exiles came back.  The returned exiles are mainly concerned with the reconstruction of the altar, temple, and city, but also with the religious problems of freeing the community of foreign, religious elements.  

Chapter 1  King Cyrus of Persia was to deport the people they have conquered but now they have even fallen to Babylon.  One of King Cyrus' first acts was to send the exiled people back home and allow them reinstate their national gods.  Among those who are to benefit are the Jews.  

Chapter 2  a list of the census for the first group of exiles returning...

Chapter 3  rebuilding the temple began under Sheshbazzar.  The first  thing to be rebuilt is the altar so that worship and sacrifice may begin again.  They follow the pattern of Moses.  The phrase is almost a refrain in Ezra, "according to the instructions of the law of Moses."  Read that as "the 10 commandments."  Everything must be properly done.

Chapter 4 As with anything good, there is opposition to the rebuilding of the temple.  The work comes to a standstill.  The settlers (adversaries) offer to help and they even want to help and offer sacrifices. But the Jews will have nothing of it and so the settlers stir things up so much that they manage to stop the work for 15 years! And then comes along King Darius. 

Chapters 5-6 Urged on by the prophets Haggai and Zechariah, the people again start building.  This time an attempt to get the new king, Darius, to stop it has the opposite effect.  Darius checks the court records, and discovers the scroll on which King Cyrus' decree is written. The Jews have official authorization for their temple, even to the dimensions and materials used.  In 4 years, the temple was completed and they celebrated the Passover.  For a nation and a people that have been through a second exodus, they have reason to celebrate.  They are truly the remnant of Israel, true to their identity.  

Chapter 7   in chapters 7-10 we will focus on Ezra, a priest who can trace his line right back to Aaron, the first high priest.  Ezra is a scholar of God's law.  He will teach it to the new community of God's people so that they will not repeat past mistakes.  Artaxerxes, the king now ruling Persia is favorable towards the Jews and Ezra is given permission to teach the law and appoint magistrates.  

tomorrow:   chapters 8-10.   

Friday, May 22, 2009

2 Chron 34-36

I Know....I know...I know.....I've been sick or gone.  I'm hopefully better today.  One more good nap and I'll be set!  :) I"ve at least showered today!  An improvement from yesterday.    I feel like I"m waining in my committment.   But I'm here now....don't have long though.  

I think we've finished up 2 Chronicles...maybe that alone will help my motivation to blog again! :) I'm not sure where I left you last but we'll just have to have a summary of ending 2 Chronicles. We'll start Ezra tonight.  Then Esther!  That will be fun to blog!

Chapter 34 Josiah was a good king....a reforming king that desecrated and demolished the places and objects of pagan worship.  He even repairs the temple and during his reign the book of law, perhaps the book of Deuteronomy,  is found!! In its discovery, true repentance is followed by the finding.  There are some differences between the accounts in King and Chronicles, mainly the order of events, but neither book is concerned with chronology.  The significance is in what they teach!

Chapter 35 The Passover had been neglected, but was revived by Hezekiah in chapter 30. Now the celebration forms the greatness of Josiah's reforms.  The nation remembered their deliverance from slavery in Egypt--within a few short years of a second slavery......that is, in Babylon.

Chapter 36  Zedekiah had been given many warnings by God through Jeremiah and the other prophets, but they were all ignored.  The destruction of the city and Temple are seen as God's punishment-- a jedgment that spelt death or exile for the whole nation.  The exile lasted about 70 years, until  the Persians took over the Babylonian Empire.  When the book of Ezra was detached from Chronicles, the verses of 36:22,23 were retained at the end of Chronicles and repeated at the beginning of Ezra.  Chronicles could not end at verse 21.  God had not utterly

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

2 Chron 28-31

Day 139

Bunco....such a silly, mindless, easy game that makes you laugh at loud....okay...the game didn't make us laugh out loud....the people did!! We had fun.  Don't you love to hear other people having a good time and laughing so hard they cry??!   Even if you don't know what its about...its great!  

Chapter 28   This King Ahaz is pretty much what not to do and how not to live.  He imitates idol worship and ways of life that are part of the pagan surrounding nations.  He becomes so corrupt that he throws his own sons into the sacrificial fire!  The Lord will only tolerate this wickedness for so long before acting.  God gives Ahaz over to the forces of the king of Aram and the king from Israel.  Ahaz's army suffered great loss in that 120,000 men were killed in one day.  Then Obed the prophet admonishes the victorious army and sends the prisoners of women and children back.  Lesson learned:  God wants His followers to excercise the same kindness and compassion.  I've met some people who will be kind to your face and talk about you behind your back....that's not the kindness needed here.  :)   We are to be truly kind and make a considerate effort to better one another's help one other out...not put one another down; especially in terms of justice.

Chapter 29 So Ahaz was the pagan and Hezekiah comes in to clean out the temple.  It was Ahaz own son that reversed everything that he had done.  Hezekiah reverses the evil trend by opening the temple's doors and calling the people to God.  Hezekiah makes an intentional decision to follow the Lord....even in the midst of pagan cultures and evil around him...he CHOOSE to follow God.  We have the choice too!  

Chapter 30  All of Israel decided to celebrate the Passover....amazing that this was the first passover celebrated since Solomon dedicated the new temple well over 2 centuries earlier!!  The priests rededicated their lives  and the people participated in ferverant prayer.  Everyone is filled with joy for the 7 days of the Passover celebration and  wanted to party on for 7 more days!!  So they did!!

Chapter 31   The people decided it was time to rid the surrounding communities of pagan altars and high places.  They go back to their homes, rededicated and joyful in the Lord and were committed to positively influencing their world.  And so shall it be with us today...and each day!!!

Monday, May 18, 2009

2 Chron 25-27

Day 138 I slacked off for 2 days .......still reading......just not blogging.....about the same kings, about the same good or not so good they did in the eyes of the Lord, about the land they are fighting, I'm back today though....ready to finish this section.......but I'm totally excited about the winner of Survivor!!!!!!  I thought he was a nice guy and played good.....way to go JT!!! :)   

Chapter 25 Amaziah has a cruel victory over Edom which leads to his own downfall.  He provokes King Johash of Israel saying "come and meet me face to face."  But Jehoash responds with a snotty allegory about the 2 nations......"my kingdom is as mighty as a cedar tree....yours is a whimpy thistle plant!"  naw-naw-naw-naw-naw-naw!!!!!!  Amaziah was threatening Jehoash, but he responds and do'nt try and take us'll be crushed.  Stay home and live!! :)  

Chapter 26  Uzziah, the same guy as Azariah in 2 Kings, WHY I don't know, but he's a creative and successful leader.  He builds up cities and becomes well known for his agricultural talents during his 52 years of reign.  Most of the time, he does follow God and God helps him succeed.  But he begins to think that HE is the success and power.....not God.  Uzziah thinks that his own ideas are better than God's.He is confronted with his sin and instead of repenting, he rages and his pride prevents him from admitting the truth!! In the end.....Uzziah is not remembered for being a great and gifted leader.....he is only remembered as  the leprous king.    

Chapter 27  Jotham proves to be a "good" king who was faithful to God.  He maintains and increases his father's power, adding Ammon to his list of cities in his reign.  He walked steadfastly with the Lord....are you?   Are you running ahead of him?  Or his is dragging you from behind trying to get you to catch up to Himself?   Or are you walking side by side in His will?  

tomorrow:   28-31

Sunday, May 17, 2009

nope.....don't even sit down here with your coffee yet....

walking out door to church!   

Friday, May 15, 2009

2 Chron 13-17

Day 135

Anyone else tired of the same story?   I"m ready to move on to a new book....feeling bored with these kings and such.  Come on Esther!! Now there's a story!!! I did that Bible of Beth Moore's so I'll have a little more to say about it......for now.....

OH! OH! OH!!  JJ stayed in bed aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaal night long.  OH MY!! I'm a new woman!!!  Six more nights to go and his Papa John will take him to the John Deere store....JJ says he wants a big Papa John's.......I'm preparing him that that is NOT going to happen!!   But one like it might......he has to say in bed for 7 down!! :)

Chapter 13-17......gonna lump summarize these today.........need to get going and out of the house!!  Abijah was king......there was a war between him and Jeroboam.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

2 Chron 9-12

Day 134

JJ sang at church last night...I wish I knew how to get the video uploaded to the blog.  But  I don't.  There weren't any clips that will make me money off of America's funniest home videos, but he was just cute and sweet.   He can't say his "s" sound all of the really, JJ was inging last night! :)  

God made the sun, 
God made the trees, 
God made everyone and 
God made me! 

Thank you God for the sun,
Thank you God for the trees,
Thank you God for everyone,
And thank you God for me!  

Then say sang Twinkle, Twinkle......I thought they were going to sing Jesus Loves Me but that was cute too!   

Chapter 9    Solomon's reign and life quickly comes to a close.  There is an emphasis on his wealth, wisdom, and international fame!  So far we've been "re-reading" almost the same exact story as we found in 1 Kings...why?  I don't know.  Perhaps it was about nostalgia for the writer.  Perhpas the prosperity of Solomon was an affirmation of God's love for Israel and they wanted to remember that aspect with clarity.  Solomon's glory was also a reminder, or lesson learned, that his royal glory was about getting a glimpse of the kingdom of God in that.....God's king would rule forever...the hope and trust we have in Jesus....the eternal King.  

Chapter 10  King Rehoboam's reign was a spiritual roller coaster!  He didn't listen to his advisor's and lost most of his kingdom off the bat!  He wanted to put a heavier yoke on the people...when the people had asked him to lighten it.  His ego and led to a disaster.  Rehoboam rejected Solomon's advisers and put into great light again the reminder of Solomon's great glory and reign....he was played against, even in his death, Rehoboam.  The bottom line, power went to Rehoboam's head!  He lacked respect for others and put his foot down like a 3 year old throwing a tantrum....hum...I wonder where I got THAT analogy?! :)

Chapter 11  Oh we go again......fearing that the north will succumb to Rehoboam if they travel south to Jerusalem to worship at the Temple......Jeroboam sets  up  high place in the northern, no, no, no.........have they learned nothing??!!  HE acted foolishly by setting up idols and false worship centers by appointing counterfeit priests.  WRONG!!!! :)  many people, including priests, abandon Jeroboam and go to Jerusalem to support king Rehoboam for a woooping 3 years...but then he too abandons God after a all of them. We think, "how could they?!  Abandon God? I'd never do that?!"  But don't our own ways of giving into cultural norms and not sticking tight to Christian principles?  Hum......  seems that Rehoboam only follows God when everything is going well.....lesson learned.....

Chapter 12  Rehoboam and "all Israel" abdondon God and suffer negative consequences.  

tomorrow:  13-17

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

2 Chron 6-8

Day 133

No stories.  Gotta work out! :)   Time spent elsewhere today......and's not noon before I get this done today!!!

Chapter 6  I love this! I love verse 13!!  The king is kneeling before the King!!  Solomon knows who he is and who God is!! His perspective is ours?  Do we limit God?  Do we let God be God??   Solomon has kneeled before Hebrew this work for kneel is that which indicates a close connection between bowing the knee and receiving a blessing.   I've never been a kneeler in prayer...but with this definition in mind, we understand why kneeling is a meaningful position in prayer........can't you wait for the day....when ALL believers and unbelievers alike will kneel before Jesus....the eternal King!!!  Solomon's prayer reminds us to continue wholeheartedly in the Lord's way.

One phrase in Solomon's dedicatory prayer indicates that the people are to pray facing the direction of the Temple.  Today...the Jewish people still visit the remaining wall that is left of the Temple....and face it....the wailing wall as we know it.   When they prayer toward the temple, it helps them focus on the one true God.

Chapter 7  His love endures forever...........Solomon has finished the temple and even his own palace and has dedicated the temple.  Now the Lord appears to Solomon in the middle of the night.  He tells Solomon in verse 14 that, "if my people, who are called by my names, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land."  This is a recipe, if you will, of blessing and renewal.....ingredients:  humility, prayer, commitment, and repentance.  Can you cook this up?  Are these ingredients in YOUR pantry?  

Chapter 8   After building the temple and palace (taking 20 years to do it!) Solomon starts rebuilding towns and cities.   ...these are his building projects.  

Tomorrow: 2 Chron. 9-12

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

2 Chron 2-5

Da y132

Hannalee was up at 8:00   9:00 and 11...then at 4 and6:30..........cna you say TEETH???

more later.....checkew b  ac k around noonish .........

so I see that noon came and went........BUT!! I got a nap so that's good!!!   I can also tell that Hannalee was sitting on my lap this morning while I tried to type! :)  I see sunshine outside!  But I know...its gonna be MUGGY!!!   

chapters 2-5   Preparations for the building the temple express a number the themes being that God is great....that is reflected in the grandeur of the furnishings and accessories of the and bronze...all of the finest things are used....they are to be great.  The Lord's greatness is reflected in the has to be great!!!  This temple is to communicate the theology of God......His greatness.  The magnificenece of the Temple was to be only a relative reflection of God's greatness.  The Lord was near, yet also enthroned beyond the stars.  All of a sudden and 3 ch apters later, the temple is completed.  They work is done, they have a dedication and 120 priests play trumpets and a choir praises God...the glory of the Lord fills the it should! ;)  God majesty is beyond comprehension.....He is too holy to be viewed with human eyes, but He gives the Israelites a glimpse of His artistic majesty and glory.  Now...God's glory comes to fill, not our temples, but our lives with the power of His Son's holy spirit on earth.  The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being!  Amen??  AMEN!!

tomorrow:  6-8  

Monday, May 11, 2009

1 Chron 28-2 Chron 1

Day 131

Chapter 28   David hands off his plans for the Temple to his son, Solomon.  David tells Solomon and the people that God's own hand wrote the plans he is sharing with them.  Perhaps God actually "inscribed" his directives as he "inscribed" the commandments for Moses.  Then  I love the verses 9-10,,,,,,if you seek Him, you will find wait, it says He will find you...YOU WILL BE FOUND.  But if you forsake him, He will reject you forever.   David tells Solomon not to be afraid for his God will be with you...HE will not fail you or forsake him until the work of the Temple is finished.  

Our lesson:  be strong and courageous.  This is a call to spiritual commitment and Solomon is meant to be a model for all believers, especially as they receive the torch of faith from the previous generation.  Live your life as an open book to God.   

Chapter 29 Gifts for the Temple and public praise .....David is asking for the community of faith to share in the cost of building the Temple.  They respond positively to his appeal then the king gives thanks to the Lord and whole community responds by celebrating in worship.  David's reign is over and he is eulogized the chronicler.  

Our lesson:  the Lord is sovereign; the people are insignificant but are greatly caught up in God's great purpose.  There are 2 types of prayers here:  prayers of praise and a plea for God's help.  We need both types!!!

2 Chron 1  As we recall from the books of Samuel, Solomon can ask for anything from the Lord. He doesn't ask for wealth and riches.....he asks for wisdom and knowledge and in return, receives that AND wealth and riches.  

Lesson here:  seek God and receive blessings...more than you can ever imagine.  

Sunday, May 10, 2009

1 Chron 26-28

Day 130

Happy Mother's Day to all of you fabulous mothers!!!  You are  awesome and loved!  Especially mine!!!     ;)

Chapter 26  Just another loooooooong list of names....these first names are the gate keepers and are temple officers....treasurers, clerks magistrates, etc.  These were also decided by casting lots. And the firstborn was very important and enjoyed special privileges and responsibilities.  We are not old why Hosah appoints the firstborn inheritance to Shimri, a younger son.  But we do know that the firstborn could sell his inheritance rights, as Esau did in Genesis.  Jesus was the firstborn of Mary and the first born of God and the firstborn from among the dead (Col. 1:18).  WE have privileges as firstborn children of God.

Chapter 27  The army is divided into 12 months....24,000 men for each month were to be on active duty.  In verses 23-24, I was confused about the counting of the men......David was determined to count them and God was mad that he did!  Perhaps God was worried (?!) that David was trusting too much in the vast numbers of the army, rather than to trust in God to provide for him.  The victory is in the power of God....not the strength of the army.   That is our remember and draw upon God's power.....not to simply trust ourselves.  

Chapter 28  The long list of names is finally interrupted again to bring us the actual story!  I think the pages fell off the  desk of the writer and the wind blew the pages....okay...stone tablets, around and these are out of order.  But back to the story........David is making way for Solomon and a formal public assembly marks Solomon's official coronation.  David presents his son to the people and gives hims a solemn charge before committing the plans for the Temple to his care.   But I ask this question........are they David's plans  OR God's plans??   I tell you, like with anything with God, it is God's Spirit the controls the process and the results honor Him and not human work.  How will you honor God this week?   Will you let your plans be His plans?

Tomorrow:  1 chron 28-2 Chron 1

Saturday, May 9, 2009

1 Chron 22-24

Day 129

Well.......JJ won 3rd place in the little 3 year old race at Dusty's school yesterday.  We was excited.  He got beat by a girl!! A tall 4 year old girl!!!  But that wasn't the point...he had fun and we have a great white ribbon on our fridge!!!  It was fun!  I'm off to scrapbook this morning. Looking forward to that.  I guess that is my mother's day present! :) 

And!! I have to quickly comment on prom last night.  We went.   We ate.  We gawked.  The kids these days....oh my! Did I really just say that??!!  Some traditional dresses and still looks like prom.  But some were shorter than a nightgown with YELLOW converse tennis shoes!  It was cute though.  Then...some of the  dresses looked like long flowing gowns from the 60's or 70's.  I did like those are just funny! I remember my first prom......BIG POOOOOFY PINK FRILLY thing.....with gloves!  I thought it was fabulous!  It was.  25 years ago! 

Chapter 22  So they are making preparations for the building of the temple was really of David's heart to build the temple....but God had told him that it would be Solomon who would build it.  I've been feeling bad for David in that he wouldn't get to build it.  But as we were reading last night I realized WHY not David and why Solomon.  Its in verse 8, David had shed too much blood and had been in too many wars!  Therefore, he would not be able to build a temple for the Lord. But Solomon, whose name means peace, will build it.  Solomon will live out the peaceful meaning of his name.  This peace and tranquility and being right with God will foreshadow the permanent peace that comes with Jesus...the Prince of Peace.  

Chapter 23  The Levites had their duties and David organizes them according to such.  Luckily enough for them...they wouldn't have to CARRY the tabernacle anymore.  Now they just had to guard the doors and gates.  There were in charge of the purification, the bread, the offerings......they were to serve before the Lord.

Chapter 24 the priests and their duties were in groups of 24--all tracing back their family lines to Moses' brother Aaron....the first high priest.  They were each in charge of the Temple for 2 weeks out of the year....this was decided by lots.  Deciding things by lots happens "lots" in the Bible....when the promise land was divided; when Saul was chosen as king; and when the tasks of the priests were assigned.  

tomorrow:  David the musician in chapters 25-27

Friday, May 8, 2009

1 Chron 18-21

Day 128

today is track day at Dusty's school......what we used to call "little olympics."  And they let little kids that aren't in school  run before everyone else....meaning, JJ!!!!!   :)  So JJ gets to run a 20 yard (???) dash this morning!  He has no clue w hat it means, so we'll see what he does!!  He said he was going to knock them over, run fast and get the ribbon.   I thought, "what in the world??!"   I told him there will be no knocking over.  Then I thought and said, " aren't playing football!!"  He said, Ohhhh!  I'll just run fast.  RIGHT!! NO KNOCKING OVER!! Oh me!! We'll see.  I'll have the cameras ready!!  Gotta hurry and get there!!! Blog, feed and dress 2 kids, pack sunscreen, a diaper bag, get the stroller, feed the dog, and decide if I'm actually going to wear the jeans I can now fit into after 2 years....they zipped!  Might not look the best on me...but they zipped!!! They didn't 2 weeks ago!    

Chapters 18-20 David victories.....its all about expanding the kingdom!!!  David is preparing the way for a great kingdom and for Solomon, his son, to have a peaceful reign.   As we will learn later, there are no wars during Solomon's rule......allowing him to eventually build God's house as a "man of rest and peace."  

Chapter 21 Angels have served as messengers throughout history.  The  come to earth for different this chapter, God sends them as punishment for his own people.  Both David and the people have sinned and a just God cannot ignore it.  Punishment is inevitable. However, when God sees the angel actually raise the sword,, he is "grieved because of the calamity" (v. 15) and stops the angel he had sent.  A difficult chapter to read, but a just and merciful God...that changes His mind??! HUM.....ponder that today.   

Thursday, May 7, 2009

1 Chron 15-17

Day 127

Today is the National Day of Prayer. AND its Hannalee's 10 month birthday! OH wow.......2 more months and she'll be 1 year old!!! YIKES!!!  Where did that year go?   Oh man......

chapter 15  So the ark has made it to Jerusalem....without anyone else touching it and dying!!!  It had been in Obed-edom's house for 3 months and David brings the ark to Jerusalem and installs it in the tent he has had made for God.  The original tent of God (the Tabernacle) and altar remain at Gibeon.   The Chronicler details the role of the Levites in the ceremony.  David and the Levites wear t he special clothes required.  Proper worship is characterized by both order and joy.  

What I wonder was this:  What was up with David's wife, Michal??!  She sat and watched him from a window, celebrating and dancing, and she despised him?  Whatever!!!  The ark is back where it belongs...with its people. (scroll down to see the pic below).  The people dance and rejoice...she has no joy in the presence of the Lord...she is alone  and lonely...she doesn't know the true presence of the Lord!  May we NOT be like her!!!!  

chapter 16 what a great long list of praise and thanksgiving to God...and its not even November!  This is a compilation of different psalms all in one:
Psalms 105: 8-22; 
106: 34-36
What would YOUR list look like of praise and thanksgiving?  Would it be THIS long?  Hum....

Chapter 17 So David isn't going to get to build the temple for God that he wanted to.  It will be his son that will do that.   David shares his hearts desire with Nathan, but God gives Nathan directions for David and God has a different plan.    Nathan's words are prophetic and change in direction....David isn't the one to build the temple.  His son gets that privilege....David maybe was disappointed, but David receives a greater promise from God:  David's house and throne will last forever!  David didn't respond with pride or arrogance...he responded with humility.  From David's lineage will come the Messiah, the eternal King, our Savior of the world!!!  

tomorrow:  18-21

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

1 Chron 12-14

Day 126

No news really.....been going to water aerobics you know.....been counting Weight Watchers points too......gotta loose Hannalee baby fat! She's 10 months tomorrow!!!  So far I'm down 12 pounds!!!!   Bunches to go, but its a start!!!!!  :)  

Chapter 12  David gets some friends to help him out.   Warriors...friends.....either way they are there to support him and they are varied and skilled...they even defect from other armies to pledge their allegiance to him.  When David sees others coming, instead of attacking them without cause, he first asks them their purpose. (Always good to do with our friends too.....ask what's your purpose --what do you need, how can I help you--instead of assuming what they need/want and attacking them.......get the facts first.  Like David, do your friends come in peace or do they come to betray you?  Be sure you know who is who!!!  One group affirmed David and God and said in verse 18, "we are yours , David. May peace come to you and all those who join you, for we know that God is the power behind your success."  Who is the power behind YOUR success?  Who do you owe it all to?  I hope you say God.  In Him we live and move and have our being!!!  King David and his loyal army are joyous (are YOUR friends joyous?!)  and armed for battle....this should remind us that we are to joyous and armed for battle until Jesus comes back!   Be devoted, servers, and willing to follow!!!

Chapter 13  DON'T-- EVER--TOUCH--THE--ARK.....EVEN IF IT'S GOING TO FALL OFF THE OX CART!!! Uzzah taught everyone  this lesson with his life!!  OH MY!!  David even became afraid of God in moving the ark, so he just left it with someone else for 3 months.  But hey!!! They were blessed while it was in their presence. Isn't that how it should be???   With God in our presence we are blessed....we are!!  We need to find Him, look for Him and seek Him....He's there.....recognize it!!!  I've been praying about prayer partners and a prayer ministry with of the questions would be "Where have you seen the face of God this week?"   I can always and easily say, in my my creation.....but God is so much more than that.  How has God worked in my life this week?   How have I failed to see that this week??  Just a few questions for thought.......

Chapter 14      Old Testament times put great value on many children (glad I live in the year 2009!)  :)  I love my children....but we're done!!! ;)  But why did God allow David's behavior with so many wives??  We can't be certain but we do know that God doesn't value the polygamy, but the children are listed as a blessing. (1 Chro. 3:1-9).  In the long run, David defeats the Philistines and his fame spread throughout the land!  

tomorrow:   15-17

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

1 Chron 9-11

Day 125

So Teacup has a new permanent home!!!!  I think THEY are calling her Foxy....or.....I can't remember.  One of the teachers from Dusty's school took it home with her 2 little dogs...she now has 3 house dogs...all that could fit in a purse.  I've seen her carry one in a dog carrier/purse!!  So all is right with Teacups little life now!  

Chapter 9 More names. I think this is the last chapter of the long list of names.  Shew!! That was hard reading!!  The gatekeepers are from the tribe of Levites who have the distinct duties of collecting the offering at the door of the temple.  They protect and guard the doorways to the house of the Lord around the clock.  They also protect the storerooms and treasuries.  Doesn't sound like a glorified job, but nothing is menial in the work of the Lord.  

Chapter 10-11  So the genealogies are left behind and we are back into the history of the southern kingdom of Judah.  This book is written to focus on the southern kingdom, especially the godly reign of David. With this goal in min,d the written omits some facts in David's life that are included in the book of Kings.  THIS book is written to encourage the recently released Jewish captives, who question  whether God's covenant is still relevant to them.  They are given reason to believe God will be with them as he was with King David.  Though they made sinful choices, God still offers love and forgiveness and they can move on!  What d o you need to be forgiven of?  What do you need to ask for forgiveness for?  do it.  receive it. and move on! :)  

tomorrow:  12-14

Monday, May 4, 2009

1 Chron 7-8

Day 124   -- I think my counting is VERY messed up.....but I really think that today is #124.  :)

We found a dog.  I found a dog.   I was driving up the hill on our busy road and thought that there was a raccoon in front of its a a dog.  A very little dog.  I kept driving up the hill to our drive, stopped, got out and picked  it up.  Called the neighbor down the hill thinking it might be theirs....came out from there.  Nope...not theirs.  Called Dusty.  I found a dog.  I'll be home.  Its a Pomeranian and she's CUTE!!! She literally only weighs 2 pounds. I have a 3 pound hand's heavier than she is!!  We called the "neighbors" across the creek bottom.  No....we called the vet across the  We've now named her "Teacup" because she's so small.  Choco thought she was a chew toy and friend to play with.  JJ thought we had a new puppy. Dusty drove up to every house on our road and asked them.  One one home.  Others...nope.  No missing dog.  We fixed her a place up to stay in the laundry room while we went to church.  Went to church.  Saw the guy that's developed our addition.....asked him...asked his parents who are our neighbors two houses down. OH ya....its Brandon and so and so's dog.  OH goooooood! We found her home!!!!!!  Straight home to take her home!  We pull up in the drive.....the guy was in the garage.  Dusty kinda held her up thinking he would see the dog from the car and be excited.  He looked down.  Dusty got out.  HEY!!! Look missing a dog?!!  I'm watching from the car while feeding Hannalee.  I'm thinking...the guy still isn't holding the dog or taking it from Dusty.  Dusty's still talking and still holding that guy's dog.  Finally the guy takes her and Dusty turns around and gives me a look like, "that's weird!!!"  Dusty left the dog and got in the car and we drive down the road 4 houses to our home, all the while Dusty saying "they don't want the dog.  The guy asked me if we wanted it.  They have too many kids to take care of it.  They aren't going to keep her."  Then I"m saying, after calling the guy a few choice not so nice names, that you don't get rid of a dog by letting her run away and TRYING to loose her!!!!!!!  I was livid!!! I was shocked! They were letting her run away and NOT trying to find her because they didn't want her.  They had done the same thing a couple of days earlier....that is how the other neighbors knew whose dog it was, but they didn't know they didn't want her. So I made Dusty go back and get the dog we just returned to the owners.  If they didn't want it, and were going to let it starve to death or get run over, then for pete's sake we'll at least keep her and feed her until we find a home for her.  They said she poops in the floor.  Well, yes.....if you don't take care of them and don't train them, they'll do that.   Plus...she's only 6 months old.   AND!!! Here's the sentence that was the kicker for me --"well, the dog is so small that our four year old has started throwing her!!!!"  ARE YOU KIDDING ME??!! Do you know HOW MANY things are wrong with that statement?!!! The problem is not the dog. The problem is probably not even the terrible 4 year that is throwing the dog.  The problem my friends are the stupid and irresponsible parents! THAT is the problem!! OH MY STARS!!! So, Teacup is not here.  In the midst of all of this Dusty took her to his sister...she kept her last night and we are calling someone who "rescues" dogs and finds foster homes for them until she can get them a permanent home.  So Teacup will be somewhere else today.  How does that stupid family think that you can get rid of a dog by just letting it go.  Its a 2 pound dog....its a $300 dog!!!!  They didn't even bother to just drive the dog to the pound!!!!!  How was that never an option for them???!! OH MY......Jesus come quickly!! :)  

Okay...chapter 7-8......... not much here.....just more names....but we do have Zelophehad...he only had daughters.....and Sheerah )She-rah!?)  built not one, not two, but THREE cities!!! What a woman!! Can you believe it?!!! Such an unusual activity that is usually the domain of men!!!   She should be an inspiration to all us  to use our God given abilities to fulfill not only just cultural expectations but God's divine purpose.  What is yours???   

Sunday, May 3, 2009

1 Chron 6

Day 122

Sleep!  In our own bed...without JJ in it!! Ahhhhhh!  AND, Miss Hannalee slept good too.  Now...why can't that happen every night??!  Oh well.....take what I can.  I invented a new family thing last night.... a "prayer drive."  We had gone out to eat with my in laws and it was a cold and cloudy evening and I wanted to just go drive around (plus it was too cold and wet for a prayer walk.) So then I thought we'll drive by friends houses and as we go by we'll say prayers for them.  So....we did.  That was our prayer drive!  

Chapter 6  The priestly tribe of Levi......some perform their priestly duties in the temple but others are singers.  Me and Dusty would be in THAT group....if we were Levites.To be a priest they were from the line of Aaron.  Territory allotted to Levitical  clans before the Levites had become a priestly tribe were supported by other Israelites and didn't need land (Joshua 21). 

Not much else here really.......  now you've got extra time to finish your coffee! :)   

Dusty has one thought/question.....JJ and I were in a store yesterday and Dusty stayed in the car with a napping Hannalee.......he was wondering how in the world the scientists think we came from apes??  How can they really believe that?   Who do they think named the apes?   Adam did all the who do those scientist named the apes?    Just thinking........ :)

Love you all!   

Saturday, May 2, 2009

1 Chron 3-5

Day 121

 What a party!!!  We had a great time!!!  And we had a house full.....we are sooooooo glad we built the upstairs bonus/playroom....we never see the kids when we have a big group or even just friends over.....its big enough up there....there's a TV and we never ask if they're okay or if they need anything.......its amazing that 15 kids can easily come and go up there and play together.  We never got on to one kid all night! WOW!!!  Dusty got lots of nice cards....some funny!!! The cake was hit.......the one I bought and the one my mom made.  She made him red velvet cake....he's been in the family 5 years now.....he gets to request "THE" cake too now! :)   I then had a big "fun" cake made to feed other 50+ people that were in and out.  
go to  She's here in Elk City and does an AWESOME job. I want her to make Hannalee's too.   

Chapters 3-5  More names....and names....and names....BUT!!  Here is where we have "the prayer of Jabez" that was so popular several years ago.

Here's something I found that I thought was interesting about the prayer:

Prayer of Jabez: What is it?
The Prayer of Jabez comes from the Bible. In 1 Chronicles 4:10, we read:
"And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that Thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that Thine hand might be with me, and that Thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested." The prayer is composed of four parts. First, Jabez asks God to bless him. Second, he asks God to enlarge his territory or increase his responsibility. Third, he prays that God will be with him and stay close. Lastly, Jabez asks that God keep him from harm so that he will be free from pain.

Prayer of Jabez: What does it mean to you?
The Prayer of Jabez reminds us that everybody struggles with choosing to rely on himself or God. Whether you are a focused 
Christian or just searching to find out more about God, life is a growing process. However, it is very clear in reviewing the Prayer of Jabez, as well as the rest of the Bible, that God is faithful in caring for those who seek Him. Jabez sets a great example of how God wants everyone to come to Him through constant and passionate prayer. If you are looking to start a relationship with God or improve your existing relationship with Him, start with prayer. God answers prayers when you trust Him (1 Chronicles 5:20). Prayers to God also please Him (Proverbs 15:8). We can all learn from Jabez and faithfully pray to God always in everything that we do.


Friday, May 1, 2009

1 Chron 1-2

Day 125



Chronicles 1-2 did you like reading all of those names??! My stars!!!  We literally just covered all of the people from Adam to Israel ( the 12 sons of Jacob).   That's all that reading was.  Nothing much there...except....we found it very interesting that the first biblical hero was Nimrod!  I joked and said to Dusty, "I always thought that was a negative thing...I've always heard people say, in a negative way, you Nimrod!!" we is a good thing!!!   

My Bible said that we need to remember that in reading this long list of names (clear through until chapter 9 is all this is going to be!!!) it is important to the inheritance of the people.   We will read the names clear on to include the people in exile.  This list is important once they return from exile because they need to know who had land and where!! This is the roll call!!!  

That's all folks!  Short and simple!  

Tomorrow:  3-5