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The Way of Man
(#146 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
Scene: Two men stranded on an uninhabited island.
One man says to the other, “We are never going to get rescued from this island.”
The other man replies, “Don’t worry, I tithe.”
“What?” says the first man. “What does tithing have to do with us getting off this island?”
The tither then explains; “I make a hundred thousand dollars a month.”
Perplexed, the first man says, “So since you make a hundred thousand dollars a month, Yahweh is going to rescue us?”
The tither, looking amused, says, “No, my pastor will.”
Think about what perceptions this gives you. What, if anything, is healthy in any of the mindsets portrayed in the above conversation? Pray and seek wisdom about the true way of the Father.
For the word of Yahweh is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)
(#145 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
He brought me out into a spacious place; He rescued me because He delighted in me. (Psalm 18:19)
Father, you said seek Your face and I have sought. You know all of my thoughts and all of my intent. You are even teaching me more about myself than I ever knew. You knew it all when You thought of me before the foundations of the earth (Jeremiah 1:5).
I must verbalize this cry of my heart, this thing that burns within me. I will not let it go dormant. I need this record of it. As I have sought Your face, it has been with the understanding that all things are in Your hands. The timing, the journey, and the end result, everything is in Your hands. My cry to You Father is that I might see Your hands. What do they look like? When I am touched, are they Your hands that touch me? As I step over into “finding” You, how will I know I have found? Is there an event, an epiphany? Is the process of seeking the actual finding? I still desire more Father, which leads me to believe that there is so much more. There is so much more Father; isn’t there? I must confess that the “peace that surpasses understanding” (Philippians 4:7) is not what I feel. Is it even a feeling Father, or is it a state of being? Or is it both?
Father, I know I cannot strive for these things with impatience and worry. I know there is a proper pattern to finding You when I seek. At least I believe I know. There are moments when I fight for the peace and joy. There are moments I praise and worship even while in great pain. I believe I have figured out the difference between striving and obedience. I know that all that I am, or ever will be, depends on finding You. Would You grant me permission to go to a deeper place with You? I am now asking You Father; would You open more doors to Your garden of love and acceptance? I know I cannot receive unless I ask (Luke 11:10). So, I ask and am reminded that, all the promises of the Mighty One in Him [Yahshua] are “Yes”, and in Him “So be it,” to the glory of the Almighty through us. (2 Corinthians 1:20)
I know that You are already pleased with me, as You see me through Your Son’s resurrection, but I am not pleased with myself Father. I do not condemn myself, but I know I must seek until I find. I am not seeking to earn Your love; You have proved Your love to me. I know there is more of You, so I am seeking to find more. My obedience in this brings me power Father. It is in that power that I seek You now. Please Father, come to me in greater measure.
(#144 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
But every firstborn of a donkey you shall redeem with a lamb; and if you will not redeem it, then you shall break its neck. And all the firstborn of man among your sons you shall redeem. (Exodus 13:13)
And in this physical fulfillment, which is a shadow of the heavenly, the metaphysical meaning cries out to us. The donkey is an ignorant and stubborn beast. The lamb is a fearful and docile creature. The redemption, which is necessary, includes protection against a future fall. The players: ignorant, stubborn, fearful, docile, and of course the neck, which represents fall or decline.
I too am ignorant, stubborn, fearful, docile, and in a mental decline, unless redeemed. And with my needed redemption, I also desire the ability to never fall (decline) again. Are these not states of your conscious emotions before its redemption by the Spirit? Isn’t it sad that this remains the state of consciousness for so many, even after they have claimed to be “saved?” And because of each one’s own choice to “fall” from Yahweh, everything must be redeemed over and over again, right?
To the contrary, Yahweh’s redemption means that you actually have the option to never fall (declining thoughts) again. The broken neck actually ends the “decline.” This should be a permanent brokenness in which you are forever broken by a Spiritual redeeming.
Every thought (firstborn) must now be spiritually transformed. Yes, that means your ignorance, stubbornness, fearfulness, docility, and mental decline are forever eradicated. Each thought is now sanctified unto Yahweh as a sign, the first fruit of a redeemed mind if you will. Human “love?” Unacceptable! Yahweh’s love “never fails” (1 Corinthians 13), and is the only acceptable standard of love. Human “goodness?” Impossible! There is none whom are good without His Spirit (Psalm 14:1-3, Romans 3:10). Human “worthiness?” Yahweh says, “filthy rags!” (Isaiah 64:6) Worthiness through His Son is the only absolute. Listen to the Spirit loved one. Sacrifice every thought unto truth, as revealed by Him alone (Romans 12:1-2). If you do, very soon you shall find a completely redeemed mind within you, a saved mind! This is a mind with no consciousness of sin (Hebrews 9:14).
Break it Down
(#143 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
Note from the editors: take a breath; clear your mind; and enjoy the ride!
Blessed [favored] are those [the ones who follow the pattern] whose strength [power, provision, purpose] is in You [Abba], who have [without guessing, moving forward] set [like in concrete, steadfast] their hearts [minds] on a pilgrimage [advancing, moving, no rust, no moths]. As they pass [yes, they leave and move on] the Valley [low places] of Baca [weeping], they [the ones operating in Abba’s power] make it [create a new thing] a place of springs [life, abundance, real reality]; the autumn [falling] rains [Spirit outpouring] also [as well as, doubly] cover [sustain] it [the mind in the valley] with pools [abundant blessing, overflow]. They [the blessed ones] go [keep moving] from strength [trust in Yahweh] to strength [more trust in Yahweh, closer to perfection] till each appears [kneels] before the Mighty One [Yahweh] in Zion [un-obstruction, perfection, a pure mind].
Here is a powerful paraphrase for your edification:
Favored are the ones who follow the pattern, whose provision and purpose are in the Father, who move forward without guessing and with steadfast minds advance. They leave the lower place of weeping by operating in Abba’s power and create something new, a place of abundance; the Holy Spirit pouring out in double portion is what sustains their new thinking with abundant overflow and blessings. These blessed children of Yahweh continue to move from trusting in Yahweh to even more trust in Yahweh as they approach perfection, until each kneels before the Mighty One with a perfect, un-obstructed, pure mind.
One of the greatest wickedness of man is their denial to unify with other brothers and sisters of Yeshua.
(#142 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
But Yahweh said, “You have had pity on the vine for which you have not labored, nor made it grow, which came up in a night and perished in a night. And should I not pity Nineveh, that great city, in which are more than one hundred and twenty thousand persons who cannot discern between their right hand and their left—and much livestock?” (Jonah 4:10-11)
“Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.” (Philippians 2:3) My people must focus on others more than self! Consider My Son; His entire existence was for others. He poured Himself out so that you might live. To do the same, My people must develop a steadfast spirit and become unified. “There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Master, one faith, one baptism; one Mighty One and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” (Ephesians 4:4-6)
Here is how to develop a steadfast spirit and become unified:
Step one, conform! “Direct your steps by My word, and let no iniquity have dominion over you!” (Psalm 119:133) As an individual, stand before Me on the narrow path. Decipher My ways and know My will. Have your home in order.
Step two, unify! “Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous.” (1 Peter 3:8) Have one mind and one speech. Be one people and become a unified force against the many principalities you will face.
Step three, act! “Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Yahshua is the Son of the Mighty One?” (1 John 5:5) That’s you! Move out and take dominion. Have I not told you that you are greater than he who dominates the world?
Conform, unify, and act; My plan is global. Won’t you consider what I Am doing for the entire world, and not just your world? I Am looking for watchmen (Ezekiel 3:17), watchmen who will change the world. I have many children who would rather choose to die under the vine. Who will rise up for Me and go to the lost? Who will honor Me and thereby receive honor from Me?
(#141 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
This is what Sovereign Yahweh says: “Behold, I Am against the shepherds and will hold them accountable for my flock. I will remove them from tending the flock so that the shepherds can no longer feed themselves. I will rescue My flock from their mouths, and it will no longer be food for them.” (Ezekiel 34:10) And this wake up call for the American “Christian church” needs to be understood. It was commanded to each individual to guard his own “life and doctrine” (1 Timothy 4:16), and yet, too many pastors have assumed the role of doing this for the people, believing that their shepherding means that everyone was intended to “see it their way,” or else be deemed “spiritually lacking,” or even “contentious.” The pastor himself is merely a part of the body; Yahshua Messiah being the head (chief) part (Ephesians 1:22).
Because their lives and doctrine are in error, many sheep are led astray in error. The key now is to teach the sheep how to stand firm, after having had their “man” headship removed and their “Messiah” headship restored.
These crucial elements will aid in this most precious of endeavors:
1. Everyone must die to “self” in order to fully understand and obey Yahweh, His son, and His Spirit; even the pastors.
2. When a pastor falls, he shall be redeemed as Yahweh will never forsake the one who truly served, and yet still had “ego” that needed to be revealed, and therefore, eventually removed.
3. If you judge the fallen one, Yahweh will be quick and faithful to remind you that “there be I but by His grace.” And how very close you are to falling in the very same areas of sin in which you judge.
4. A fallen pastor is not to be viewed as one whose former messages, and yes, that means all of them, cannot be taken seriously. If the messages had scriptural truth, truth that should have been affirmed by each individual who received the word anyhow (Acts 17:11), then the messages stand as anointed by the Spirit. Truth was always Yahweh’s, and if it meant that only the sinless could teach His word, we would have no teachers whatsoever.
5. Rejoice that Yahweh is always faithful to His word. The fallen one will rise again (Proverbs 24:16) and he will return with praise on his lips that Yahweh does not and will not let any man get away with anything that rejects Yahshua Messiah and His sinless sacrifice.
Everything will be shaken beloved, and those who are “exposed” and convicted of sin will learn to appreciate and be grateful for their humbling experience. These things the sheep must know when a mighty one falls. All is well. They need to know that all is well! For a righteous man falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked are overthrown by calamity. (Proverbs 24:16)
(#140 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
One option! That is all you have. Freedom is having no other options. Is this not the true freedom I have for you? You have one choice, and that is to obey My commands! How quickly you test Me. I can hear your thoughts. “If I choose not to do Your will, then I can simply make my own choices, right?” It sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? But, you would never think like that, would you? Yes, My child, every day; every day you say this to Me. Your disobedience says it all. The death of My Son says it. What do you think the shed blood was for?
Fill in the blanks in the scripture I have given you. Are you ready?
“Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone as obedient [____________], you are [____________] of the one you obey—whether you are [____________] to sin, which leads to death, or [____________] to obedience, which leads to righteousness?” (Romans 6:16)
Yes, slaves, slaves, slaves, and slaves! Read it aloud to Me. Fill in the blanks and read it over and over.
Because I know you and because I created you, I offer this consolation. My slaves are free! My slaves love! My slaves hope! My slaves grow! My slaves learn to adore their Master with all of their being! My slaves learn what freedom truly is! Won’t you come and learn from Me? Won’t you be My slave?
Choose This Day, or I Will
(#139 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
Please read Deuteronomy 28:1-12 before you continue:
If you fully obey Yahweh your Mighty One and carefully follow all His commands I give you today, Yahweh your Mighty One will set you high above all the nations on earth. All these blessings will come on you and accompany you if you obey Yahweh your Mighty One:
You will be blessed in the city and blessed in the country. The fruit of your womb will be blessed, and the crops of your land and the young of your livestock—the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks. Your basket and your kneading trough will be blessed. You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out.
Yahweh will grant that the enemies who rise up against you will be defeated before you. They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven.
Yahweh will send a blessing on your barns and on everything you put your hand to. Yahweh your Mighty One will bless you in the land He is giving you. Yahweh will establish you as His holy people, as He promised you on oath, if you keep the commands of Yahweh your Mighty One and walk in obedience to Him.
Then all the peoples on earth will see that you are called by the name of Yahweh, and they will fear you.
Yahweh will grant you abundant prosperity—in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your ground—in the land He swore to your ancestors to give you.
Yahweh will open the heavens, the storehouse of His bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands.
You will lend to many nations but will borrow from none.
If you fully obey…
Blessed above all nations.
Blessed in the city.
Blessed in the country.
Blessed in your womb.
Blessed with your crops.
Blessed with your flocks.
Blessed in your basket.
Blessed in your coming and going.
Blessed in victory over your enemies; they will flee from you, in seven ways.
Blessed in your barns.
Blessed with your hands.
Blessed in the land.
Blessed in holiness.
Blessed with prosperity.
Blessed from the heavens.
Blessed in lending.
Blessed as the head.
The key phrase among all these blessings is, “If you fully obey!” Do you see the beauty of it, the “it” being your obedience? Doesn’t it sound abundant? Yahweh says, “I have a special plan for you, a plan to bless you. I only want goodness for you.
Doesn’t My Son’s death prove that to you? I desire and I will have your obedience.
If you would you like to see how adamant I Am about blessing you, read about My curses for disobedience in Deuteronomy 28:15-68.
Yes, I will make sure you get your blessings. Soon My child, pleasing Me will be your only desire.
I Cry Out For the Little Ones
(#138 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
The voice said, “Cry out!” And he said, “What shall I cry?” All men are like grass and their glory is like the flowers of the field. The grass withers and the flowers fall, because the breath of Yahweh blows on them. Surely people are like grass. The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the words of the Mighty One endure forever. (Isaiah 40:6-8)
Your Word shall endure forever Father. Yes, You have said to me, “Those who hope in Me will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:31)
I listen to Your whisper Abba; You say, “I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths; I will guide them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them.” (Isaiah 42:16)
My soul clings to these words, these words of life, these words of redemption. I too am a dad. I need Your atonement so that I might return to my young ones. As I need You, they need me. As You are teaching me to need only You, I too will teach them that they need only You. So many things You need to teach my soul. So many things I need to teach theirs. As I finally come to You in a truly authentic way, a way like never before, bring me back to them to show them how to also be authentic before You. I know that You know what it means to be a Father who gives the only kind of love possible, the love that never fails. How will the little ones know what it looks like lest their dad teaches them? Because Your love never fails, I know that You will allow me to teach my children what that looks like. I rest in that.
Inner Peace, Acting Out
(#136 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
Am I not He who guides and protects you? Did I not appoint Malakim (mind messengers) to minister to your going out and your coming in? (Hebrews 1:14) Let Me be perfectly clear with you. I will work on everything on the outside, while you work on the inside. “Seek first”, My Spirit has spoken to you (Matthew 6:33). Am I not your Almighty Father? Is My strong arm not sufficient to cast away all of your foes? Am I not adequate to orchestrate the outcome of every situation on your behalf?
Listen to Me child! Your decisions; your acting out; and all the things you do to influence outcomes on your own; are evidence of a lack of faith. You attempt to control relationships, dreams, business deals, and the results in all situations and circumstances of your life, shouts so loudly that you cannot hear Me saying, “Be still and know that I am the Mighty One.” (Psalm 46:10) How quickly you act and react. “Please let this (whatever ‘this’ is) fall into place”, you beg of Me, before you even seek My will. All the hopes, all the efforts, “all the labor of man is for his mouth, and yet the soul is not satisfied.” (Ecclesiastes 6:7)
Here is another unchangeable pattern for you. Listen closely! I will work on outside circumstances; you work on the inside. Synchronicity is what I desire. If you believe that I have all things in My control, then you have but one duty. Find out where I Am leading you and follow. I Am talking about inner peace, peace in all your decisions. Will I not tell you all things to come (John 16:13)? Am I a man that I should lie? Let inner peace be the language between us. How quickly you’ve run off without Me in the past. When you get ahead of yourself you are really only wandering away from Me. I Am the source for all good things in your life. I have the answers for all of your desires.