Eye Has Not Seen…

1 Corinthians 2:9 (NKJV)

But as it is written:

“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”

It’s time for me to forewarn that ellen b. will be away from the computer and all reading material for a time. On Monday I am scheduled for Vitrectomy Surgery in Spokane. My right eye has enough floaters to form my own galaxy. They affect my vision in my right eye. The surgery will involve removing the vitreous (the clear jelly like substance that fills the middle of the eye). They will replace it with saline (a saltwater solution). I’ll be under Dear’s care who will have to instill 3 different eye drop medications in my eye at different intervals for days. I don’t really know how long it will be before I feel like typing or reading so when you don’t see anything on my blog you will know why. I hope some of you will pray for me when God reminds you by His Spirit. Thank you in advance!

This is the latest devotional book that I am reading along with my daily Bible passages.

It’s proving to be a book I copy quotes from into my journal. Piper shares this quote from C.S. Lewis and then I’ll share a subsequent paragraph from Piper.

In the middle of the last century the British writer C.S. Lewis got it shockingly right:

A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic–on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg–or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill him as a demon; or you can fall at His fee and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to. (Mere Christianity)

Then Piper goes on to say:

In other words, Jesus will not be domesticated. But people still try. There seems to be something about this man for everybody. So we pick and choose in a way that shows he is on our side. All over the world, having Jesus on your side is a good thing. But not the original, undomesticated, unadjusted Jesus. Just the revised Jesus who fits our religion or political platform or lifestyle.

These quotes are just from the preface. I’ll be jotting down many more thoughts to ponder as I continue to slowly read through this one.

Happy Monday to you all. Hope to have Dear add an update on this post on Wednesday to let you know how things are going.

Can You Imagine?

Zephaniah 3:17 New King James Version (NKJV)

17 The Lord your God in your midst,
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.”

Can you imagine God singing over you?

Are you a child of God? Have you responded to His call to repent and be born again? Jesus died for our sins and rose again so that our sins can be forgiven and we can be saved and be born again. Is Jesus your Lord and Savior? Are you following and growing in relationship with Him?

If you answer yes then you are His child. You are one of His lambs. Stop and consider the fact that the God of the universe sings over you…

My daily readings right now include the Bible, Daily Readings by C.H. Spurgeon, The Pleasures of God by John Piper and Pray Big by Alistair Begg. In Piper’s book I’m in the chapter called “The Pleasure of God in doing good to all who Hope in Him”. The beginning sentence reads; “Can you imagine what it would be like to hear God singing?”

This chapter brought my thoughts to who I have sung over in my life. There is a simple song I sang over each of our children when they were babies. I made up the simple words to a simple tune and sang it when I held them or rocked them.

There’s a little boy I love, his name is Joshua, Joshua.
There’s a little boy I love, his name is Joshua, Joshua.
He’s my little boy, I love him so.
He’s my little boy, I lo-ove him so.

I sang the same song over our second born son, Daniel.

There’s a little boy I love, his name is Daniel, Daniel.
There’s a little boy I love, his name is Daniel, Daniel.
He’s my little boy, I love him so.
He’s my little boy, I lo-ove him so.

Then we had our daughter, Katie.

There’s a little girl I love, her name is Katie, Katie.
There’s a little girl I love, her name is Katie, Katie.
She’s my little girl, I love her so.
She’s my little girl, I lo-ove her so.

Now 40 years later I’m singing this same simple song over our granddaughter and grandson.

There’s a little girl I love, her name is Addyson, Addyson.
There’s a little girl I love, her name is Addyson, Addyson.
She’s my little girl, I love her so.
She’s my little girl, I lo-ove her so.

and

There’s a little boy I love, his name is Jaymison, Jaymison.
There’s a little boy I love, his name is Jaymison, Jaymison.
He’s my little boy, I love him so.
He’s my little boy, I lo-ove him so.

Today I’m dumbfounded in thoughts about God singing over me. God singing over His lambs. I’m waiting on God for the day when He returns to gather his lambs. How about you? “Open our heart-eyes to see much further and see much better, to the riches of your eternity.” ~Begg

John 17:24-26 English Standard Version (ESV)

24 Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. 25 O righteous Father, even though the world does not know you, I know you, and these know that you have sent me. 26 I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.”

Ask God to make his name known to you…

Thoughtful Thursday

On Tuesday we met with the pastor and deacons of First Baptist Colville to give our testimonies for consideration for church membership. I rewrote my testimony to share with the deacons.

Nestled close to  Kings Canyon National Park in California’s Sierra Nevada is the Youth Camp that I was able to attend in 1963, 1965 and 1967. I was 12, 14, and 16 during these wilderness adventures.

I was raised in a family who attended church regularly and often, very religious. The church I was raised in gave me the impression that because I was Russian and a member of their church that I had an exclusive connection with God. What I learned at Bible Camp was that the only exclusive connection I could have to God was through Jesus Christ and what He did for me on the cross. Being Russian and being a part of my father’s religion did not give me a direct link to God. In 1963 at Hume Lake while listening to a speaker talk about Jesus and His sacrifice on the cross to save sinners I was moved to step out and become a follower of Jesus. God’s plan of salvation was exclusively through his perfect son Jesus, who is fully God and came to earth to live a perfect life among us and be the perfect sacrifice for our sins. I knew I was one of those sinners and I needed a Savior. This decision began a journey of ups and downs, highs and lows, but a journey forward with my God and Savior. When I began my new life following Jesus I was clothed with His righteousness and reconciled to God. I continue on this walk, never perfectly but with God’s grace I carry on. He will be teaching me by His Holy Spirit all the days of my life. My God and Savior is and will be faithful to see me through all of my life on this earth and I look forward with the Hope of seeing Him face to face in heaven. During this same year, 1963, my father began his journey of following Jesus after hearing Billy Graham at the Los Angeles Coliseum share the truth of Jesus Christ and why He came to earth over 2000 years ago. 1963 was an epic year for me and my family. For my father and me we became part of God’s movement of love and grace through the Gospel of Jesus Christ. My mother was a follower of Jesus when she married my father. My two older sisters had started following Jesus before my father and me.

I’ll share this verse that Billy Graham proclaims in every interview I’ve ever heard him give. John 14:6 (ESV) Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

High School scanned4HUME LAKE CHRISTIAN CAMP 1967

Fresh quotes from my reading this week and a quote from Dorothy Sayers that I read on Thistle Cove Farm blog:

“It is not the business of the church to adapt Christ to men, but men to Christ.” ~ Dorothy Sayers

Form Piper, Taste and See:

“We should continually look to the cross and the work of God in Christ because this is where God makes the light of the gospel shine. If we become excessively introspective and analyze our emotions too much, we will sink into hopeless doubts because the self-authenticating light shines not from within us, but from Christ in the gospel. We must look outside ourselves to Christ and his work if we hope to have assurance sustained inside ourselves.”

Second, we should continually pray for God to enlighten the eyes of our hearts.

Third, we should express our trust in Christ by loving each other.”

1 John 3:14 ~ We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren.”

Hope you have time to pause and consider what God has done for you on this Thoughtful Thursday.

The Light of the World is Jesus ~ Hymn

The Light of the World is Jesus

The whole world was lost
In the darkness of sin,
The Light of the world is Jesus!
Like sunshine at noonday,
His glory shone in.
The Light of the world is Jesus!

Refrain

Come to the light, ’tis shining for thee;
Sweetly the light has dawned upon me.
Once I was blind, but now I can see:
The Light of the world is Jesus!

No darkness have we
Who in Jesus abide;
The Light of the world is Jesus!
We walk in the light
When we follow our Guide!
The Light of the world is Jesus!

Refrain

Ye dwellers in darkness
With sin blinded eyes,
The Light of the world is Jesus!
Go, wash, at His bidding,
And light will arise.
The Light of the world is Jesus!

Refrain

No need of the sunlight
In Heaven we’re told;
The Light of the world is Jesus!
The Lamb is the Light
In the city of gold,
The Light of the world is Jesus!

Refrain

Words & Music: Philip P. Bliss

update: Christopher Tan left a link in the comments with him playing this hymn beautifully on piano. I wanted to leave the link here if anyone would like to listen to this hymn played on the piano. Just click here.

Encouragement ~

I Thessalonians 5:11 ~ “Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.”

I Thessalonians 5:14 ~ “And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.”

Romans 1:11,12 ~ “For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you – that is, that we may be mutually encouraged “by each others” faith, both yours and mine.”

Romans 15:5 ~ “May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Hebrews 3:13 ~ “But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.

Hebrews 10:25 ~ “Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”

So here’s what I heard yesterday in our church service (we went to the Saturday evening service) that I found encouraging and want to pass along to you. Our hope looks forward to our inheritance. When Jesus was resurrected and was seated at the right hand of the Father we became heirs with Him (Romans 8:17, Gal. 4:7).  Our inheritance is unfading, death proof, sin proof, time proof. We will have a new body (I Cor. 15:50-58), a new home (John 14: 1-3), a new world (2 Peter 3:13), a new job (Matt: 25:21-23), a new relationship with God (Rev. 21:3-4). The Holy Spirit is the pledge of our inheritance (Ephesians 1:13,14).

We need to keep looking to what Jesus has done for us and what we have to look forward to in Him in order to be grounded in our faith and anchored in this topsy turvy world. We don’t look at what is happening on the outside but what is happening in our inner man, daily renewal. We keep looking to what Jesus has accomplished for us. This is where our hope is, our living hope. We can’t focus on this life. I’m going to work on memorizing these next verses over the next couple of weeks. Do you want to join me? 🙂

2 Corinthians 4: 16-18 ~ “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”

My hope is that this will be encouraging to you…

ht: Steve Larson, pastor E.V. Free Conejo Valley

Jesu, Our Hope, Our Heart’s Desire ~

 

Jesu, our Hope, our heart’s Desire,
Thy work of grace we sing;
Redeemer of the world art Thou,
Its Maker and its King.

How vast the mercy and the love,
Which laid our sins on Thee,
And led Thee to a cruel death,
To set Thy people free!

But now the bonds of death are burst;
The ransom has been paid;
And Thou art on Thy Father’s throne,
In glorious robes arrayed.

O may Thy mighty love prevail
Our sinful souls to spare!
O may we stand around Thy throne,
And see Thy glory there!

Jesu, our only Joy be Thou,
As Thou our Prize wilt be;
In Thee be all our glory now
And through eternity.

All praise to Thee Who art gone up
Triumphantly to Heav’n;
All praise to God the Father’s Name
And Holy Ghost be given.

Words: Un­known au­thor, 7th or 8th Cen­tu­ry (Je­su nos­tra re­demp­tio, Amor et de­sid­er­i­um); trans­lat­ed from La­tin to Eng­lish by John Chand­ler (Hymns of the Prim­i­tive Church, 1837) and the com­pil­ers of Hymns An­cient and Mo­dern, 1861.

ht: cyberhymnal