Tag Archives: Blessings vs. Curses
(#335 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
It starts with a question. Did you know that the road to perfection (the mind of the Messiah) reveals resentment towards Yahweh? For some, the resentment is obvious; for others, it is hidden in the secret places of the heart. For all, in order to reach the high calling, this resentment must be faced?
It begins with the acknowledgment that without the Messiah your heart remains deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; and that you do not even have a chance to recognize it without Him (Jeremiah 17:9). All of your thoughts, all of your “self,” can only ever produce total depravity. Even what you consider righteous is not cleaner than filthy rags without Him (Isaiah 64:6). You can better appreciate why when you consider that in order to be deemed perfect, even Yahshua had to acknowledge, “Of My own self, I can do nothing.” (John 5:30) The equivalent of those words for you loved one, would be, “For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body [totality of thoughts] of death?” (Romans 7:18; 24)
The acceptance of this reality causes a deep valley experience in your conscience: “If at my best, all I could ever produce on my own is a body of death, thoughts that are horrific and depraved, then only Yahweh can set me free from this depravity.” Who will deliver me from this body of death? I thank the Almighty—through Yahshua the Messiah our Master! (Romans 7:24-25)
Everything contained within this thought: “O wretched man that I am!” is upheld in the totality of Scripture, and yet, at a certain point in the valley, this thought will birth in you, a fury you had never known existed, and this ferocity towards the Almighty Himself. From, “Please don’t let my will be done Father. Please don’t let me even attempt to think for myself;” to, “Why are you letting my thoughts still enter in Father? Why is my conscience still aware of thoughts that defy all that You say is true?” Your greatest longing will become the need to not think for yourself, and to never want your personal will to even enter the equation. And yet, it does! “Who will deliver me from this body of death?”
“For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; I know of myself I can only produce wickedness, and I repent of all that I am, yet You still leave this battle within my mind. You still let this wickedness win in me, my emotions being corrupted by it. Why? Why do You leave me like this? Why are You cruel to me?” These are the furious thoughts you will have to face on the road to perfection. You must come to the place where you realize that His timing in your personal resurrection (saved mind) is as much under His control as your redemption itself. This “why” is under His Sovereign control and will be revealed in His perfect timing. This was not intended to answer why for you loved one, but to inspire you to hold on. We can relate, and we hold on with you.
Here is your meditation; “I have been impaled [because it was and continues to be necessary] with the Messiah and I no longer live, but the Messiah lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of the Most High, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20)
The Fig Tree and Its Lesson
(#334 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
Now in the morning, [illumination] as He [the way to the saved mind] was returning to the city [mental stronghold], and He was hungry [spiritual longing]. And He saw [mentally perceived] a fig [opportunity] tree [firmly established] by the road [mind path], and He came to it. But found nothing [no spiritual fruit] but leaves [a wall, blocked ambition] on it, and He said to it [the unfruitful endeavor] “May fruit [profitability towards goodness] never grow on you again,” and IMMEDIATELY the fig tree withered [revealed wickedness]. When the disciples [redeemed faculties in thought consciousness] saw [spiritually perceived], they marveled [experience a changed paradigm] and said, “How did the fig tree wither away so quickly?” (Matthew 21:18-20)
Man lives on every word revealed from the mouth of Yahweh (Matthew 4.4 from Deuteronomy 8:3). Heaven’s language is profound, yet meant for little children. The wise and learned so often misunderstand because of dulled spiritual senses (Matthew 11:25). “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see. For I tell you that many prophets and kings wanted to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.” (Luke 10:23-24) So, what is the lesson from the fig tree?
Starting our discussion with a critical question would be appropriate. Where in Scriptures do you ever see Yahshua the Messiah praying about what to do? Slow your mind and walk this out; and it will help you perceive this lesson. The “model prayer” itself (Matthew 6:9-13) teaches complete reliance on the Father’s will (v. 10), and cautions against “mindless repetition,” (v. 7) as the Father “knows what things you need before you ask Him.” (v. 8)
Yahshua only walked to the fig tree because He was led to the fig tree. The reality that there was no “fruit” was the superficial issue. Obedience to go and His reaction to what He found were the real issues. There would be no weeping prayers; no lengthy intersession or explanations, and no repetitive pleas to make something that He may have personally desired appear. It was His Father’s will that the tree had no fruit and He would not pray to change that. “I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those You have given Me, for they are Yours.” (John 17:9)
If we peer into the mind of the Messiah (1 Corinthians 2:16), what might He be thinking? “I expected there to be fruit on the tree, but I found none. However, the ‘none’ that I found was My fruit of obedience for going; that is what mattered to My Father. Also, the fact that as soon as I perceived there was no fruit like I had imagined there would be, it was IMMEDIATELY illuminated to Me that this was My Father’s will. And I did not succumb to My own will, nor did I desire its fruit any longer, because had it been My Father’s will for Me to eat its fruit, THERE WOULD HAVE BEEN FRUIT ON THE TREE!” You see, this is so simple that a small child can understand; it is the wise and learned who have difficulty.
If you are stuck wondering what to do, then you suffer from double mindedness loved one (James 1:8); a divided house (mindset) that cannot stand (Mark 3:25)! Stop willing things to happen according to personal desire, while claiming, “I’m just waiting for the Lord, trusting Him for it.” You should know IMMEDIATELY in all things if only One will is being considered. And if He intends for you to hold out for something, then complete peace and an undetached tranquility is proof that it is of Him. If He says, “Wait!” then no more prayers are necessary on this matter, if you are willing to receive it.
The lesson of the fig tree: IMMEDIATELY go when you are told; leave when you are told; wait how long you are told; and in all matters, be content with what you find! Stop trying to impose your “self” desire upon Yahweh (serving yourself), while claiming to be His servant. “Your will be done!” It’s not just another pleasant Christian sound bite that you can wear on a rubber bracelet. It’s the mind of the Messiah and all the power and responsibility that comes with it.
We are going to the deepest places loved one. Prepare your mind and receive because this is what you will find when you arrive. Yahshua replied, “Truly I tell you, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done.” (Matthew 21:21)
(#333 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
Sometimes I feel so afraid, like if I vanished in an instant, no one would miss me.
Sometimes I hold on by a fraying thread, like the best of tomorrow is a thread yet unbroken.
Sometimes it all seems like a lie, like I’m pretending this journey’s all been predestined.
Sometimes I sit alone in the silence, and I long for the silence to speak back to my loneliness.
Sometimes I’m confused; why does faith find its substance in hope, if hope has no substance?
Sometimes I’m angry; how can faith and hope have any substance if their only evidence is invisible?
Sometimes it seems cruel that I was created with such frailty; I question why love would do such a thing.
But who are you, a human being, to talk back to the Almighty? “Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’” Does not the potter have power over the clay, from the same lump to make one vessel for honor and another for dishonor? (Romans 9:20-21)
We have learned so much together that has helped us overcome such thoughts. So why here; why now? Very simply, it is to comfort you. It is to let you know that you should not be dismayed if these thoughts still arise, even after all the sacrifice, all the pressing in to obedience, and all the longing to be conformed to His image. Yahshua Himself, at the end of His entire journey of obedience, and standing firm in the hope of all that was promised, shouted, “Why have You forsaken Me?” (Matthew 27:46) His whole life was a sinless journey and, in the end, He too had to experience doubt. The Kingdom was within Him, and in a moment, it was snatched from Him. Why? It was necessary that He be tested in every way as we are, yet to remain sinless (Hebrews 4:15). It was the final test for Him to be released from His own self will, and it took doubting the Father to finish it!
After this, Yahshua, knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the Scripture might be fulfilled, said, “I thirst!” Now a vessel full of sour wine was sitting there; and they filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on hyssop, and put it to His mouth. So when Yahshua had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit. (John 19:28-30)
He had to receive the sour wine from your vessel into His vessel. Remember loved one, a servant is not greater than his master; what was necessary for Him is also for you (John 15:20). Don’t be dismayed if sometimes you receive sour wine; your resurrection is near. Don’t give in. Don’t shrink back. Soon, you will be in glory.
(#332 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
Thinking burns calories! Thoughts require energy, both conscious and subconscious; they are living and active. Is it any wonder that ulcers (disease) are most often created from mind stress rather than physical exertion? It would then be prudent and coherent to create a nutrition chart for the mind in order to maximize your potential in the physical. And considering the wholistic nature of the Scriptures (1 Thessalonians 5:23), you should know this about physical nutrition, so you can relate it wholistically to mental nutrition. It is not just about food, but the sum total of all things that contribute to growth, repair, and preservation of a healthy body. Let us, therefore, consider wholistic nutrition for your mind:
1. Psalms = Carbohydrates
2. Deuteronomy = Protein
3. Obeying the Torah (5 books of Moses); Spiritual blessings = Good Fat
4. Disobeying the Torah; Spiritual curses = Bad Fat
5. Prophets = Fiber
6. Proverbs = Water
7. Prayer and Meditation = Calories
8. Praying in the Spirit = Phytonutrients, Vitamin and Minerals
9. Spiritual Warfare (the Epistles) = Renewing the mind; Detoxification
10. Taking Dominion (embracing your identity before Yahweh) = Exercise
11. The Good News = Rest
12. Revelation = Dreams and Sleep
13. History Books = Firm foundation, Deep Roots, Stability
Prepare your mind to hear. We will go beyond the standard comfort zones today. Having often discussed the reality that life manifests within (the thought world) before it is expressed without (the physical world), let us move on to perfection (perfect thinking). These invaluable pearls allow us to further express the true roots of disease.
Your physical health is directly related to your knowledge of the words of Yahweh loved one. Listen closely and listen well as your diagnosis could be supernaturally transformed today. If your body is the manifestation of the totality of your thoughts, then you can use the Scriptures as your nutrition guide to renew your mind and therefore your body. You would do well to perform an analysis of your predominant mental status (congregating thoughts) in order to determine the cause of the physical state of your body (the reason for your diagnosis). Then you can decide to “choose life” (Deuteronomy 30:19), instead of death.
And this is where we go beyond comfort zones. Your physical body is the outward expression of your thought life! Listen again and let this seed plant itself in good soil (Mark 4:20). An unhealthy perspective of scripture, and therefore Yahweh Himself, leads to an unhealthy physical life. Let’s relate this to some common diagnoses and see what transpires: Physical to Mental
High blood pressure: Disobedience, fear, unbelief
Obesity: Discontent, gluttony
Diabetes: Lack of self-control/self-discipline
Digestive Problems: Stress, confusion, anxiety
Arthritis: Anger, rage, foul language
Use of Steroids: Insecurity, vanity, pride
Cancer: Breaking food laws, bitterness, unforgiveness
Lethargy: Sloth, indifference, apathy; rebellion
Lean and fit: Application of Biblical truth
The Abundant Life: Wisdom, knowledge, understanding, and obedience
And there are so many more loved one, but this was intended to be an eye opener (spiritual perception stimulus). What you allow to feed your mind can be directly equated to what you stare at in a mirror. If sickness is what you see, then confess and begin the healing and wholeness process, back to a fit life. A renewed mind and, therefore, a renewed body awaits you.
Yahshua answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” (Luke 5:31-32)
(#330 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
The congregation is the gathering of redeemed minds called to think and do as the Messiah did. It is meant to propagate His teachings and His thinking, which then produces evidence that is demonstrable in the physical realm. By faithful execution of this calling, we will produce even greater works than His because He demonstrated to us how He “went” to the Father (John 14:12). This is best understood in context as if Yahshua went “the way of” His Father, as in “not My will but Your will be done.” (Luke 22:42)
The metaphysical picture of the congregation is to imagine many souls gathered together, the gathering of redeemed thoughts, or in other words, the congregation of minds pressing in together to apprehend the mind of the Messiah. Your commission is to hear and understand the Father’s language. “Why is My language not clear to you?” Yahshua asked. “Because you are unable to hear My word.” (John 8:43) And what were His words as a manifestation of the Father’s mind? “I am He and I do nothing on My own but speak just what the Father has taught Me.” (John 8:28) Can you recognize in His words that He went the way of the Father? This is the pattern; His mind congregated with the Father; He received direction; and He spoke only the Father’s words. The Messiah, as with all men, had two minds within, His own and the Father’s. He always submitted to the Father’s mind, expressed as “His will,” and it always produced greater works. Within first, and then without! And you?
This powerful understanding of “the congregation” is lost when the erroneous translation of “the church” is substituted. What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of church? Honest introspection is warranted and advised at this time. When you hear church, do you think of internal things, like the mind of the Messiah that only thinks what the Father thinks? Or, do you see external things, like ministries and buildings? Do you think mindsets or ministries? If “church” immediately conjures up thoughts of external things, it is because you do not yet speak His language or hear His words. It’s good that we have congregated to discuss such things; two or more of us gathered to propagate the Father’s thoughts.
As We Forgive
(#326 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
“And forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.” (Matthew 6:12)
It’s because you’re stuck in the physical realm that these and other scriptures remain unfulfilled. But Yahweh said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. Yahweh does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but Yahweh looks at the heart [mind].” (1 Samuel 16:7) It is what is on the inside that is most important. With this, again, brought to the forefront of your mind, let’s re-examine what Yahshua was teaching in Matthew 6:12.
“And forgive us [minds meant for redemption and salvation] our debts [obligations owed due to carnal thoughts; acknowledgement of idols in thought processes] as we [the mind being renewed] forgive [move past, press on] our debtors [former thought processes that bring back memories of pain, fear, anger, sadness, etc.].” Our minds were meant to be redeemed and then preserved whole with full release from any current obligations. The renewed mind can then also move beyond any memories of the past that threaten to drag us back into old mindsets.
When Yahshua’s words are considered from the Holy mind perspective (a circumcised heart), their intent is to demonstrate that the obligation of both the debt and the debtor were yours; each is one side of a sharp double-edged sword. It is not about what others may owe us in the physical world, but obligations of ego centered thinking that have been forgiven once they are confessed, yet which still linger because of the residues of sin. That is why you are called to forget what is behind and strain toward what is ahead (Philippians 3:13).
Listen loved one; it’s never about anyone else. It has always been, and always will be about every thought you think, and whether or not those thoughts are obedient to the Holy mind patterns. Forgiving EVERYTHING is a byproduct of believing in Yahweh! Press on toward the goal to win the prize for which the Mighty One has called [you] heavenward in the Messiah Yahshua. All who are mature [perfect] should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too the Mighty One will make clear to you. Nevertheless, to the degree that we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us be of the same [Holy] mind. (Philippians 3:14-16)
(#324 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
And Yahshua came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in Heaven and on earth. Go therefore…” (Matthew 28:18-19)
Go therefore! It’s the way of the Father. Yahweh gives authority to Yahshua; “For I have not spoken on My own authority; but the Father who sent Me gave Me a command, what I should say and what I should speak.” (John 12:49) And Yahshua gives it to us; He called His twelve disciples together and gave them power and authority over all adversaries, and to cure diseases. He sent them to preach the Kingdom of the Mighty One and to heal the sick. (Luke 9:1-2) Behold, I give you authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy; so that nothing shall by any means hurt you. (Luke 10:19)
There is no authority except from the Almighty, and the authorities that exist are appointed by the Almighty. (Romans 13:1) In order to better comprehend this transference of authority, we might ask, “Who, what, when, where, how and why?”
The Almighty Father (Romans 13:1) grants His authority to His Son and His Son then grants it to us (Matthew 28:18-19; Luke 9:1-2; 10:19).
The ability to overcome your ego; not your will but His will be done (Luke 22:42).
It was predestined before the world began (Ephesians 1:4-11).
In the heavenly places in the Messiah (Ephesians 1:3). And on earth as it is in Heaven (Luke 11:2)
As you emulate the Son’s humility in the same way that He submitted to His Father’s authority, your ego (self-will) is defeated (John 12:49). This is only possible by Yahweh’s grace (Ephesians 2:5).
For His good pleasure of course! (Psalm 149:4)
Remember these things loved one. Remember them especially when you are tempted to believe that it is, in any way, by your own authority (mental strength and power) that you have overcome your sinful ways. The Messiah in you is what removes sin, and nothing else. Without the Father’s authority passed to Him and His authority passed to you, you have no authority, no strength, and no power. May the Holy Spirit invade you with this reality; it is the only path to righteousness (right thinking).
Yahshua said, “The Spirit of Yahweh is upon Me; He has anointed Me to preach the good news to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed.” (Luke 4:18)
Yahshua said, “He has!” Now, “Go therefore!”
(#323 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
Do you often feel as if you have met some sort of requirement, appeasing the Father with the time you “spend” with Him in devotions? Is there some type of spiritual satisfaction you derive from being able to say, “I do devotions every day?” You do err in your thinking if you attempt to block out small segments of “devotion time,” while never considering what time with the Father really means.
A simple statement should suffice to explain the potential error, and then we can create a new context for your devotional activity. “If every one of your thoughts is commanded to come into captivity to the obedience of Messiah (2 Corinthians 10:5), and He did nothing of Himself but only what He saw the Father do (John 5:19), then every moment of your life should be a devotion time unto Yahweh!” Then Yahshua said to them, “When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He, and that I do nothing of Myself; but as My Father taught Me, I speak these things. And He who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone, for I always do those things that please Him.” (John 8:28-29)
Therefore, this is the proper pattern to ensure victory over your thought world every day, all day:
• “My voice You shall hear in the morning, O Yahweh; in the morning I will direct it to You, and look up.” (Psalm 5:3)
• “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of the Almighty.” (Romans 12:2)
• “Pray without ceasing.” (1 Thessalonians 5:17)
If you never seek your own will, but always the will of the Father (John 5:30), then your thought world will be devoted to Him entirely! Anything less does not conform to the pattern. And the wise understand why the morning sets the stage to live in His mindedness throughout the day. It is the time when you rise to declare, “Abba, by the power of Your Holy Spirit placed in me, grant me the courage today to die to myself, and therefore do all You command. Please help me utterly forsake my own will and desire to do Your will alone!” Then, the rest of your day becomes an extension of your morning prayer, and the end result… “The Father has not left Me alone, for I always do those things that please Him.”
Authors’ personal note: We are honored that you have incorporated Suffer Well into your life as part of the “renewal of your mind,” in other words, the declaration of your mental allegiance towards Yahweh. It is especially powerful if it is how you start your (His) day before Him. Yes, it can be a powerful kick start in the morning, but it’s not enough loved one. We say “mental allegiance” to remind you that it is your entire mind He has plans to take over, and you must press beyond these devotions. No doubt, we are very honored to be part of your growth. It’s an awesome blessing to be a blessing to you.
(#321 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
My family, my friends, my pastors, my church brothers and sisters, my business partners, my colleagues, my clients, and my ministry recipients, all of them confidently affirmed His ways.
The greatest sign of love would be to lay down my life for others. (John 15:13)
Evidence of renewal would be proven by forgiveness towards others. (Matthew 6:14-15)
All of our sins are equal in His eyes? (Romans 3:23)
Yahweh has appointed both prosperity and adversity. (Ecclesiastes 7:14)
Yahweh gives and takes away. (Job 1:21)
Consider one another to stir up love. (Hebrews 10:24)
Do nothing selfish but consider others better than yourself. (Philippians 2:3)
You often praised me for my efforts and vision, and said that you trusted me. Wasn’t that a curse for us both? (Jeremiah 17:5) I have since learned of One who did all that the Father said and He was despised and rejected (Isaiah 53). He has become all things to me. If He had not, I would have perished in sorrow a thousand times over.
He gave me permission to share what He whispered to me about all of us. “You imposters; you hypocrites, you whitewashed tombs filled with dead men’s bones and all sorts of impurity. (Matthew 23:27) Can I now be everything you claimed to be? I will do everything the Father commanded and it will heal your broken soul.” Until it happened, I would have never imagined that accepting this about myself would open the door to my own healing. And now I can proclaim to all the other imposters:
No greater love has any man than to lay down his life for another. I forgive you all and hold no record of your wrongs. I too am an imposter, a hypocrite saved by grace. I lost everything that once mattered more than anything, but I don’t blame you for anything. I look at you as He sees you, and I see beauty in you. I will always try to encourage you if possible, but I will not trust you and bring curses to our lives. I have not heard from any of you in a long time, but I pray you are doing well. I hope you become everything He dreams for you. I’ll see you in eternity and I look forward to meeting you again there.
The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. Some have departed from these and have turned to meaningless [idle] talk. They want to be teachers of the Law, but they do not know what they are talking about or what they so confidently affirm. (1 Timothy 1:5-7)
Crumbs from the King’s Table
(#320 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
Then she came and worshiped Him, saying, “Master, help me!” But He [Yahshua] answered and said: “It is not right to take the children’s bread, and toss it to dogs.” And she said, “True, Master, but even the dogs eat those crumbs which fall from their master’s table.” (Matthew 15:25-27)
It’s the ideal perspective loved one; it is faith demonstrated to perfection. The realization that your standing before the Master, well, actually you’re on all fours. This woman, only by His Spirit that touches her, can bow before Yahshua with authentic introspection and make an honest “self” assessment. Unto herself, she is not better than a dog, a spiritual cripple, a beggar. It begins with a mind that is desperate for the opportunity to come to the King’s table, the place where heavenly delicacies are spread before you. Bow at the King’s feet, get on all fours, lay prostrate, do anything necessary to come humbly before Him, anything to eat at His table. To her, the crumbs are not just incidental leftovers, but rather her opportunity to taste life. She is happy to eat the crumbs from the King’s table, even willing to compare herself to a dog that considers the scraps a delight.
Then Yahshua answered and said to her, “O woman, great is your faith! May it be to you as you desire…” (Matthew15:28)
“Eat,” He said. Come to the table of heavenly delicacies and all of your requests are granted. Delight yourself also in Yahweh; and He shall give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37:4) For her, it was the healing of her daughter (thoughts of compassion and beauty). What will it be for you? Are you willing to come on all fours? Humble yourselves before Yahweh, and He will lift you up. (James 4:10) Then perhaps He will invite you to have a seat at the King’s table.
And what of the son of Jonathan who was lame in his feet? Now when Mephibosheth the son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, had come to David, he fell on his face and prostrated himself. Then David said, “Mephibosheth?” And he answered, “Here is your servant!” So David said to him, “Do not fear, for I will surely show you kindness for Jonathan your father’s sake, and will restore to you all the land of Saul your grandfather; and you shall eat bread at my table continually.” Then he bowed himself, and said, “What is your servant, that you should look upon such a dead dog as I?”…But Mephibosheth your master’s son shall eat bread at my table always.” …“As for Mephibosheth,” said the king, “he shall eat at my table like one of the king’s sons.”…So Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem, for he ate continually at the king’s table. And he was lame in both his feet. (Excerpts from 2 Samuel 9:1-13)
Yahweh’s plan is that the lame will bow before Him and He will lift them up to dine at the King’s table. If you too come before Him as one who is lame, He will find a seat at His table for you like you are one of the King’s own children. May it be to you as you desire.