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Posts Tagged ‘love’

One day is not enough to say I love you.
Perhaps I should try and do.
But one day a year to say I love you,
Would not be enough, even with flowers, too.

One month is not enough to say I love you.
Even though there are cards and candy, too.
But one month only just won’t do.
One month is not enough to say I love you.

One year is not enough to say I love you.
No, no; one year just won’t do.
There’s not enough time to show you.
One year is not enough to say I love you.

Maybe a lifetime might do.
Yes, maybe a lifetime will do.
Everyday, every way, to say I love you.
From our early days to all the way through.

If a lifetime isn’t enough, there’s eternity, too!
Time without ending, a n’er ending view,
A lifetime partnership, just us two.
An eternity of sharing, me saying I love you.

With all my heart, I love you.
Time and time again will do,
Everyday, every way, eternity through,
Time without ending, just to say I love you.

 

c.20160214, for my wife, my forever Valentine.

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Sometimes we have to stop and think about words and phrases we may have heard too often that they lose their strength. I am reminded of that today by these few little words: God so loved the world.
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There have been arguments by unthinking people who say there is no “God”, because how can a loving god allow war, murder, mayhem, etc? God didn’t allow it. Man did. What God gave Man to manage is Man’s to manage. God didn’t tell Cain to whack Abel with a stick and kill him. Cain did. History is full of examples of Man doing to Man and environment whatever Man wanted then blaming God or some god for things going bad. It was Man’s responsibility to manage; not God’s.

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Reflecting on life, as I often do, I thought of my daughter who I met for the first time last year. She is 23 and I did not know her until last year. I was disappointed that I only just met her. There was so much of her life I missed. I may be her father, but I never got the chance to be her dad. I missed a grand opportunity.

A child’s first hero should always be the dad. The guy who can lift anything, reach anything, open anything, kill any bug, and knows a lot of stuff. As they grow up they will come to realize dad cannot do everything and does not know as much as first thought. But in some special place inside the child remains a memory that dad was once a hero in their eyes. I missed out on that experience with my daughter.

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“My House is not the Church”
By Dave Doc Rogers
©20100315

Don’t throw stones just yet! I’m not a heretic! I just want you to stop and consider for a moment the quote. If your initial reaction was offense then to look for stones, I would not surprised by some. If your initial reaction was a question – where is he going with this – good. If your initial reaction was ‘good, someone is talking about it’, I am a bit surprised. In the last millennium of the Church the greatest influences seem to have come from Europe and Eurasia. Among the archbishops and popes came the institution of the church; or the church as an institution or over-government. The dilution of the strength of the concept around the word church did not happen overnight. The Church was not, is not the building. The Church is more than that. The building was something altogether different in the eyes of God.

“My House shall be a house of prayer.” – Matthew 21.13

Jesus took this moment to remind everyone in the Temple that day and for weeks to come that this house was not set aside as a market place. It was special, therefore holy, to God.

Solomon saying, “But who is able to build Him a house, seeing the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain Him? Who am I then that I should build Him house, save only to burn sacrifice before Him?”
– II Chronicles 2.6

God saying, “I have heard thy prayer, and have chosen this place to myself for a house of sacrifice … Now My eyes shall be open and my ears attent to the prayer that is made in this place.”
– II Chronicles 7.12,15

God chose this place as a place of meeting for Him and His people. It was to be a place where He could come to meet with His people, receive their sacrifices, hear their petitions, and provide an answer to them, the people of God.

David, Solomon’s father, desired a place for God better than what David had.

“See now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwells in curtained tents.”
– 2 Samuel 7.2

This was the same curtained tents that Moses had built according to the design of God, as pointed out in Exodus chapters 35 and 36. In Exodus chapter 40, Israel and Moses finish the tent, its curtains, its fixtures, it furniture, its everything, then Moses assembled it.

“Then a cloud covered the tent of the congregation, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter into the tent of the congregation, because the cloud abode thereon, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. And when the cloud was taken up from over the tabernacle, the children of Israel went onward in all their journeys. But if the cloud were not taken up, then they journeyed not till the day it was taken up. For the cloud of the LORD was upon the tabernacle by day, and fire was on it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel, throughout all their journeys.”
– Exodus 40. 34-38 KJV

In the King James Version, it is called the tent of the congregation. In the New King James Version and other English versions, it is called the tent of meeting. It was the place designated by GOD as the place where He would meet with Israel, His chosen people. The tabernacle was a point of connection, a demonstrative showing of His presence … cloud by day, fire by night. But, it was not the original plan or design.

Moses met God at a burning bush.

“And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush; and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed. And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt. And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said Moses, Moses. And he said, here am I. And he said, Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon you stand is holy ground. Moreover he said, I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God.”
– Exodus 3.2-6

But the burning bush was not part of the original plan or design. God was after more than that.

In Genesis, we see the beginnings of God’s original intent. God made man, placed man in the garden in Eden, and walked with man in the garden. God named man Adam. God let Adam name everything else. And whatever Adam called it that is what God called it [Gen 2.19-20]. God said this was very good [Gen 1.31].

The intention here is that God and Man walk together, sharing in the work, the discovery, the problems, the successes, the joys, … sharing in everything, everyday. The place of meeting was where they were, in the garden, in the cool of the day, enjoying each other’s company. But that changed with the introduction of sin to Man [Gen 3]. Now Man could no longer come to God. The Adamses [Adam and Eve Adams] were cast out of the garden, cast out of God’s blessing and favor, and cast into seeking God and only finding Him when He came to them. They could no longer come to God. Jesus changed all that.

From Adam to Jesus, the children of God who followed after Him were always taught and thought they were ‘less than.’ Sin has a way of accomplishing that. Jesus taught and thought differently. Just out of the Bible they had at the time, Jesus taught them who would hear that they were the children of God and should not live as they do. Jesus taught them they were to be ekklesia; a body of equals and leaders called out to meet, hear a thing, judge it, and decide jointly. Jesus taught them that if they believed on him who God has sent they would be saved from the judgment to come, would be received as equals again in the House of God, and could have no separation from God ever again. If they choose to believe … act out as if real, living, now … they could have all these things. Jesus taught they were better than they believed, better than they conceived, and despite the insistence of a few, they were loved by God their Father. In three years of teaching this, of his family, only his mother believed. Those closest to him deserted him in his time of greatest need of them. He was even abandoned by His Father in Heaven.

“Eloi, Eloi! Lama sabachthani!” “Father, Father, why have you forsaken me!”
– Mark 15.34 KJV

 Jesus became separation from GOD the Father for us. At his death, when he gave up his spirit, the veil – the curtain of separation – was rent, was torn in two, from the top to the bottom. There was such a spiritual shift that the earth quaked. Jesus did say in Luke 19v40 that if they would not praise him the rocks would cry out. The rocks cried out.

After the conquest of death and the grave, after the resurrection to the flesh, after 40 days of testimony to 520, after the ascension in the clouds, after 10 more days of prayer, fasting, and waiting … God showed up in power, in fire, in wind, in anointing, and in testimony. There was now no separation of God and Man. And 3000 believed Peter’s testimony that day.

The Church is God’s elect, His ekklesia, His body of equals who come together to hear a thing, to weigh it, to judge it, and to decide on it.

The meeting places have changed over the years: a garden, an ark, a tent, an alter, a burning bush, a mountain top, a tabernacle, a temple, a synagogue, a cross, an empty grave, an empty mountain top, a shrine, a catacomb, a cathedral, a country one-room building with a bell, a store front across from a pie shop, someone’s front room or lounge room, or a converted office space that once was a police detectives’ office. The meeting places change. They are just places to meet. What does not change is who shows up at the meetings.

There is now no separation for those who are in Christ Jesus. There is no separation from God for those who are in Christ Jesus. They are one in Him even as Jesus is one in Him. There is no separation, because of what Jesus did from the Mount of Olives, through the trials, through the mistreatment and false accusation, through the scourge and beatings, through jeers and the carrying of the instrument of his own sure death, through the pain of three nails and a cross, through the absence of His Father, through the willful death on a cross of wood, through the indignity of burial, through the conflict in death, to the triumphant resurrection, through the hurt of healing his own disciples, through the longing of his own heart at the ascension, through the sitting down at the right hand of the father. All these things, that there might be no separation between you and the Father.

Jesus said, “Heaven and Earth will pass away, but my Word will remain.” [Mt 24.34]

If the Church were a building, it would pass away. No, it is not a building. The Church is the people, the most important part of creation to GOD. A tent, a house, a garden… these things are temporary. His house is where we choose to meet Him. His Church is His Children; a far more precious commodity than a building.

His House is not the Church. His House is for His Church.

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“Now, I have prepared with all my might for the house of my God…”
– I Chronicles 29:2 KJV

1. Building a House for God

“Lo, I dwell in a house of cedars, but the ark of the covenant of the Lord remainth under curtains.” – I Chronicles 17:1b KJV 

Now, King David had been king of Israel for some time. Whenever he went to worship the Lord God of Israel, he went to a tabernacle made of tents and cloth while he lived in a palace of cedars, fine furniture, and luxury. This began to bother King David that he should live so well and the Lord God of Israel dwelt in tents. He desired more for his God than that. His heart was that God should also have the best of things and a house worthy of His name. So, King David of Israel began to pursue just that.

                Look around your life. Does God, the God of the Holy Bible, the Father of Jesus your Savior, the Gifter of the Holy Spirit; does He have a better place in your life than you do? Is He at least equal? If not begin building Him a house in your life that He might dwell in it.

2. Preparation

“Now, I have prepared with all my might for the house of my God…”
– I Chronicles 29:2 KJV

                When King David of Israel made this statement it was many years… years after he first decided he would like to build a house for God. He desired a house for God that would be great and of great fame throughout the world. 

“… and the house that is to be builded for the Lord must be exceeding magnificent, of fame and of glory throughout all countries: I will therefore now make preparation for it. So, David prepared abundantly before his death.” – I Chronicles 22:5 KJV               

3. Counting the Cost 

King David set out in preparation, before the building of the House of God, all the pieces and craftsmanship needed to build the House. He set aside, in store, all the money needed to start the work and all the detailed plans to build it. This is detailed in I Chronicles 22:14~16, 23: et al, 28:11~18, 21, 29:2~9. 

4. Construction 

Solomon, after being made king of Israel, returned to King David’s desire to build a house for God. (II Chronicles 2~3) King Solomon pursued the best materials and the best persons he could find to work the materials so that God’s house would be without equal in all the world. 

5. Furnishing 

King Solomon contracted with the best craftsmen to make exacting and excellent furnishing for the House of God. (II Chronicles 4) In exacting detail, he had his servants craft the instruments, implements, stonework, pillars, and all the utensils for service in God’s House. 

6. Consecrating 

Once everything was made that needed to be made, once everything was built that needing building, once everything was crafted that needed to be crafted, once everything was in place that needed to be in place; King Solomon called the elders, heads of the tribes of Israel, the chief fathers of Israel, and all the men of Israel to Jerusalem to bring the Ark of the Lord from its resting place in the Tabernacle of David to the House of God, the Temple in Jerusalem. Then, they began to offer sacrifices without number and praise unto the God of Israel. (II Chronicles 5:1~7) 

“It came even to pass, as the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the LORD; and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music, and praised the LORD, saying, For He is good; His mercy endureth forever: that then the house was filled with a cloud, even the house of the LORD; so that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud: for the glory of the LORD had filled the house of God.” – II Chronicles 5:13~14 KJV 

7. Living in the House 

The rest of the history of Israel shows their respect and lack of respect for the House that King David desired and King Solomon built for God. From time to time the kings and the people of Israel returned their hearts back to God and the house that was made for Him. Solomon built a house for God. Zerubbabel and Jeshua rebuilt a house for God. Herod rebuilt a house for God. Let us build a house for God.

Can we build a house for God? The Bible says yes we can. 

“What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost…”
– I Corinthians 6:20a KJV 

                Using the pattern above (Building the House, Preparing the House, Counting the Cost, Constructing the House, Furnishing the House, Consecrating the House, and Living in the House), let us look at how we can build a House for God in our own lives.

                The house was built for us. David, in the Psalms, shows us how we are “fearfully and wonderfully” made by the hand of God. (Psalm 139:14) We were “predestined” to be with Him. (Ephesians 1:5, 11) We have been given the house that He desires to inhabit. Then, let us accept this habitation and build a life that is pleasing to God. Let us give Him a place where we can sacrifice and make offerings unto our God. Since we have been given a worthy house usable to praise our God, let us begin then the preparation of the house for service to Him.

                How do we prepare for so great an undertaking? King David spent his latter years working out the details for a house he would never build. Many kings and elders after him took it upon themselves to build, rededicate, rebuild, or build anew a house for God. So, how do we prepare? In the same way they did. First, they decided in their hearts they would build a habitation unto God, the LORD GOD of Israel. Then, they set about finding what was needed. You are that building. What do you need in your life to be the habitation of God? What cleansing, what sanctification do you need in your life so that you can be acceptable as a place of meeting, a place of sacrifice, a place of praise and worship unto our God?

                The Bible is the starting place. You must begin with building a firm foundation of the study, knowledge, and understanding of God’s Word, the Holy Bible. From there, let the Words that God speaks from His Bible act as the laver to cleanse you, to sanctify you, to separate you from the things of this world. Prepare yourself with a right understanding and a right humility. Circumcise your heart, cut away the things of this world from your inward being. Walk in separation unto your God, the LORD GOD of Israel.

                Count the cost. What will it cost you to walk this way? What did it cost God to allow you to come near Him? There is a price. In the garden in Eden, Adam’s price of disobedience was spiritual death, tilling the soil, fighting with thorns to be fed from the earth. A further cost was the shedding of blood to cover his nakedness in his flesh. (Genesis 3:21) It will cost you something to be disobedient to God. Because of Adam’s sin and curse, you have to labor for your gain. Under the Law given to Moses, blood had to be shed to cover the sin of Israel. You will have to put out some effort, yes even struggle at times, to get close to God. Jesus shed His blood at the Cross to cover your sins. You must accept that sacrifice and let that blood cover you just as Adam was covered by the shedding of blood and just as Israel was covered by the shedding of blood under the Law. There is a cost, a price.

                Constructing the house of God is laborious. To construct it well, to ensure it will stand for eternity, it will require hard work on your part. You build it and support it with the truths of God; and that only through His Word the Bible, confirmed by His Holy Spirit. To build well, it is a meticulous, detailed, process to change from your base perspectives and understanding to the perspectives and understanding that only God can provide. It is a life-long process. Just as God gifted men and women craftsmen for Moses, David, Solomon, Zerubbabel, and Herod; God will send to you gifted men and women to help you refine your house into a house worthy of God.

                Furnishing your house is through good works. Just as in the world today, there are artists in stone or paint or film that do incredible “works” in their media of choice and finding those, paying for those, and putting them in the right spot takes time and contemplation. Follow the Biblical examples to do good works to fill up your house unto God. Let your house be well furnished with great works that are as exquisite works of art to bless the Lord, your God.

                Consecration means to separate for a specific purpose and no other purpose. Consecrate your life, your house, to the specific purpose of habitation with God, to be a praise and a worship unto Him. And, do no other thing with your life. If there is a thing in this world that you are doing or someone wants you to do but it is not pleasing to God, do not do it. That is no longer a part of your life. Your life is pleasing to God; and God only.

                Living in the house is your daily task. Paul said in Romans 12:1 to present yourself as a living sacrifice. It is your reasonable service. According to God and His reasoning with Paul, this act of daily building a house where God and you can dwell together is your reasonable, logical, acceptable, it makes sense to do it, service – a task not so much for you as the one to whom you are giving it.

                Build for yourself a house unto God.

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