As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. -- Isaiah 55:10-11

Monday, February 20, 2012

A View of What I See...And What I Pray to Always See

Periodically, I get asked how I study the Bible or how God speaks to me. This morning I was having some fabulous time with the Lord, and He was giving me answers to questions I have been asking. I thought I would share that with you and demonstrate how I study and how God speaks to me.

My notes are marked with ** and in regular font. The actual scripture is in bold.

I hope this blesses you by helping you with your Bible study, help you understand how God can use scripture to speak, and maybe offer you some answers you have been seeking, too.


Psalm 105
 1 Give praise to the LORD, proclaim his name;
   make known among the nations what he has done.
**Praise the Lord and proclaim His name. Simple stuff. There are no qualifications. It isn't praise and proclaim when things go my way, when things are easy, or when I'm in the mood. I need to praise Him and proclaim His name period.
**"Make known what He has done"--sometimes it feels like He has done nothing. Sometimes I am drowning in all the stuff I have been hoping for that hasn't happened, or all I see is what I've lost. What am I supposed to say He has done. "All good and perfect gifts come from God." What good gift do I have? My kids, warm clothes, food, coffee with my friend, a good car, warm house, running water, clean water, the ability to put my feet up, the ability to read the Bible for myself....
Dear God, thank you. You spoil me with good things. Thank you.
2 Sing to him, sing praise to him;
   tell of all his wonderful acts.
**"All His wonderful acts"--Daddy, please make me acutely aware of your wonderful acts, right down to the dandelion that makes me smile in the park. Who knows but that you protected that flower just so I would see it on a bumpy day and feel joy? In fact, I am willing to believe you did just that, that you saved that flower just for me because you know I love them. Thank you. Thank you for being so detailed in your love for me. Help me to not miss the tiny, but so intimate and personal detailed ways you love me.
3 Glory in his holy name;
   let the hearts of those who seek the LORD rejoice.
**Dad, sometimes when I'm seeking you, I get frustrated because I don't see you answering. Please show me how to rejoice anyway. Show me how to rejoice as I seek you. I'm not really sure how to do this, but I am seeking you, and I believe rejoicing has a purpose. Help me not to think my rejoicing means I will get something from you. Help me to rejoice simply because you deserve it. You are worthy of my rejoicing. But, Dad, I know if I seek you, I will find you, and honestly, that makes me giddy with expectation. So, please keep my motives in check for me.
4 Look to the LORD and his strength;
   seek his face always.
**Daddy, there are things I've needed help with that I've been avoiding because I don't have the answer. It is easier to escape. Forgive me for looking for the easy way out instead of looking for you. Forgive me for forgetting that you have every answer to every problem. Forgive me for not believing you care as much about those things as I do, maybe more, because I seem to think they are inconsequential or can be ignored. You never ignore a need. NEVER. Daddy, I'm sorry. I know you probably have been sitting there waiting to give me the answer so I could handle this and we could move on. I'm sorry. You are the answer. Forgive me for whining and not actually looking to you for the solution. Oh, Lord, keep pulling me back to you until I remember.
 5 Remember the wonders he has done,
   his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced,
**Daddy, I know this is probably talking about water out of a rock, armies in the ocean, and such, but honestly, the fact that you love me so much and you are so detailed in your commitment to me is a miracle. I think of all the times you speak to me, answer me, work on my behalf, save my butt, and just lavish me with your love, and I know the kazillion reasons I have given you not to love that way, but you do. THAT is miracle enough for me.
6 you his servants, the descendants of Abraham,
   his chosen ones, the children of Jacob.
7 He is the LORD our God;
   his judgments are in all the earth.
 8 He remembers his covenant forever,
   the promise he made, for a thousand generations,
9 the covenant he made with Abraham,
   the oath he swore to Isaac.
10 He confirmed it to Jacob as a decree,
   to Israel as an everlasting covenant:
11 “To you I will give the land of Canaan
   as the portion you will inherit.”
 12 When they were but few in number,
   few indeed, and strangers in it,
13 they wandered from nation to nation,
   from one kingdom to another.
14 He allowed no one to oppress them;
   for their sake he rebuked kings:
15 “Do not touch my anointed ones;
   do my prophets no harm.”
 16 He called down famine on the land
   and destroyed all their supplies of food;
17 and he sent a man before them—
   Joseph, sold as a slave.
18 They bruised his feet with shackles,
   his neck was put in irons,
19 till what he foretold came to pass,
   till the word of the LORD proved him true.
20 The king sent and released him,
   the ruler of peoples set him free.
21 He made him master of his household,
   ruler over all he possessed,
22 to instruct his princes as he pleased
   and teach his elders wisdom.
 23 Then Israel entered Egypt;
   Jacob resided as a foreigner in the land of Ham.
24 The LORD made his people very fruitful;
   he made them too numerous for their foes,
25 whose hearts he turned to hate his people,
   to conspire against his servants.
26 He sent Moses his servant,
   and Aaron, whom he had chosen.
27 They performed his signs among them,
   his wonders in the land of Ham.
28 He sent darkness and made the land dark—
   for had they not rebelled against his words?
29 He turned their waters into blood,
   causing their fish to die.
30 Their land teemed with frogs,
   which went up into the bedrooms of their rulers.
31 He spoke, and there came swarms of flies,
   and gnats throughout their country.
32 He turned their rain into hail,
   with lightning throughout their land;
33 he struck down their vines and fig trees
   and shattered the trees of their country.
34 He spoke, and the locusts came,
   grasshoppers without number;
35 they ate up every green thing in their land,
   ate up the produce of their soil.
36 Then he struck down all the firstborn in their land,
   the firstfruits of all their manhood.
37 He brought out Israel, laden with silver and gold,
   and from among their tribes no one faltered.
38 Egypt was glad when they left,
   because dread of Israel had fallen on them.
 39 He spread out a cloud as a covering,
   and a fire to give light at night.
40 They asked, and he brought them quail;
   he fed them well with the bread of heaven.
41 He opened the rock, and water gushed out;
   it flowed like a river in the desert.
 42 For he remembered his holy promise
   given to his servant Abraham.
43 He brought out his people with rejoicing,
   his chosen ones with shouts of joy;
**Daddy, thank you. I believe you are going to bring the children and me out of this with rejoicing. I believe you are going to bring us out with shouts of joy. I already see it. I see the huge change. We aren't where I want to be yet, but I see such faithfulness and wondrous change. The desert has been hard, but you have been so faithful. Thank you for reminding me of Joseph and Israel and the steadfastness of your promises. Thank you for feeding my anticipation and expectation. Thank you for the desert. I hated it, but I am amazed at how present you were in it, and if you brought others out with rejoicing and shouts of joy, I know we are coming out the same way. You take my breath away with your goodness.
44 he gave them the lands of the nations,
   and they fell heir to what others had toiled for—
45 that they might keep his precepts
   and observe his laws.
   Praise the LORD.
 **Daddy, I'm pondering this, "...that they might keep his precepts and observe his laws." I don't understand how their getting the lands of nations or the stuff others toiled for leads to keeping your precepts or observing your laws, but I want to understand because I want to keep your heart. I want to be faithful.
Daddy, I know this chapter is your promise to me. It is you assuring me again that you have us even if we are in the desert, and it is encouraging me to continue to believe in your promises. When the hard days come, help me not to fall into flesh patterns but to fall into THIS truth, right here. Help me to remember that you are in the desert and good things are here with you. Miracles and provision and love are in the desert, and, Daddy, if this is where you are the most evident, I want to be here. I know...I know I'm not always faithful, and I know I whine a lot, but really, if this is where I know you, this is where I would rather be. I love the idea of the Promised Land, and honestly, I'd like to rest, but the Promised Land is nothing if I am too busy with the "good stuff" to see the God stuff. All the gifts are useless if I don't see you. Please, Daddy, help me to always see you.


Jason Wert said...

This is AWESOME.

I'm so glad you shared it.

Jerri Kelley said...

Jason, so glad it blessed you!

mizzbrizz said...

So very perfect! Thanks for this, Jerri. In church this past week, our pastor was talking to us about checking our motives because when we get to heaven and He's judging us in the fire, our foundation will be tested for those motives.

Jerri Kelley said...

Mizzbrizz, that is EXCELLENT! Thank you for sharing!!!