Be An Overcomer

Leprosy was dreaded in Old Testament times.  The priest was given the task to determine whether a person had leprosy, and when that person was clean or unclean from the leprosy.  He became a doctor.These laws concerning leprosy can be very confusing, but all point to the same thing.  A person with a sore in his skin that was not healing properly had to be isolated fro everyone else.  Why?  because leprosy is extremely contagious, while a common sore is not.  We know today that leprosy has an incubation period of at least 2 years, so if a person is leprous and poasses on the disease, the other person carries that bacteria for a minimum of 2 years before they see any symptoms.  It might sit in his system up to 20 years before appearing.

And what are the results of leprosy if left untreated?  Paralysis, loss of feeling in extremities, eyelids and eyelashes falling off, shortening of fingers,and toes, disfiguring of nose or ears, pain, blindness and other things It is no wonder God desired to have the people clean from this insidious disease.  I looked up a bit of information just for fun.  Buddhists believe it is honorable to care for the sick, and leprosy does not make a person unclean, while Hindus believe leprosy is a punishment for sins in a previous life.  God never says it is any kind of punishment, andHe knows the disease is contagious so separates the leper from society until he is clean.  Once the priest pronounces him clean, there is a whole ceremony that he must go through in order to purify himself.

The stories of lerprous people in the Bible are interesting.  Naaman had to dip himself seven times in the Jordan river, and his leprosy went away completely. Uzziah, who was a king during Isaiah’s time, was struck down with leprosy when his pride got the best of him.  Moses’ hand became leprous when he put it inside his cloak as a sign to the people of Israel. When he put it in again, it was clean. Miriam was leprosy when she questioned Moses. So leprosy in the Bible is not always a sign of sin, a smany say it is.  Leprosy is something God uses to show His power, I believe.  God will use any means to show His power and His glory.

I love the story in the Bible where Jesus cleanses the 10 lepers.  First of all, He should not have been anywhere near them.  They had to dwell outside the village, on their own, as a result of the leprosy.  Jesus came to them and touched them, which was unthinkable to the regular citizen.,. I wonder what was going through the minds of the disciples at that moment!  He touched them and told them to go and show themselves to the priest so that he would pronounce them clean.  And, according to this verse in Leviticus, what was the condition of the person who was clean?  His sores were all healed and his skin was white, maybe even his whole body was white.  he may still have deformed hands, blindness, and any of the other results of leprosy.  But if he was clean, the priest would know.

Then there was one who came back to him and thanked him for his cleansing. Only one returned.  Would I have been so excited at being cleansed that I would have forgotten to thank God?  Do I always take the tie to thank God for the things He does for me?  He gives me breath each day, opens my eyes, gives me strength to walk, the ability to use my fingers, to hear, taste and smell.  All of this is His doing.  How thankful am I?  The one who comes back and gives thanks is pronounced whole, not just cleansed. I truly believe that man walked away with no white sors, no deformities, no sign he ever had leprosy in the first place.  He was whole.  Thanksgiving is a key to becoming whole in the Lord!

I know I am long today, but there is one more story of lepers.  There were 4 lepers sitting at the gate of the city.  The city was enduring a terrible famine.  People were eating their own children as a result.  All were in danger of starving to death.  The Syrian army and the city were surrounded.  There was no hope anywhere.  The four lepers made a statement that resonates even today.  “Why sit we here until we die?”  They went into the camp of the Syrians, after the Lord had sent them running in the night, and realized they could take the spoils left behind.  They told the city, and the city was free from the enemy and the famine.  There is a lot more to the story, but this is long already.  The moral, to me, is that we must go about our Fathers business, and not let anything stop us.  We are all sinners.  We should never let our sin keep us from working toward fulfilling God’s plan for our lives.  It is He, and only he, who can make us whole.  It is only he who can run the enemy out of our way.  And it is God, through Jesus Christ, who has overcome this world for us.  let us be overcomers also.

This Time

I Don’t Know, But I Do

If there’s one thing I know, it’s that I don’t know very much.

I don’t know how my heart can continue to beat around 70 times a minute 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 52 weeks a year for 70+ years without any electric motor, or hydro power or nuclear power.  How can it pump blood through arteries and into capillaries, only to have that blood coke back through veins and run through again? How does that happen?

I don’t know how I can sit here and form words in my head, and then my finger will just start typing the individual letters that make up those words.  How does my eye tell my mind to move the muscle that will hit the typewriter at the correct place to make this paragraph?  How does that happen?

I don’t know how DNA works.  How do atoms form chromosomes, and chromosomes form the DNA that tells our bodies to make us who we are from the moment of conception?  How do the cells come together to form the nose, feet, hands, mouth, teeth, shoulders and so on, that will become our body when we emerge from the safety of our mother’s womb? How do these chromosomes determine my hair color, eye color, shape of toes, height, possibility of diseases, and so many other features?  How does that happen?

I don’t know how a seed can be planted in a pile of dirt and then emerge as a plant full of more seeds to be planted the next year so they can produce more seeds and more seeds.  How does the seed even have the ingredient for the plant it will produce?  How do those ingredients come together to start a stem, and then leaves, and then a fruit, or a flower, or a mighty oak tree?  How does this happen?

I don’t know how a line in the sky can divide a Southeast wind from a Northwest wind.  How can this line produce dangerous winds that whirl in all directions, or a tornado, or a lightning strike?  How can a single line stop winds from one direction going 30-40 mph, and also stop winds of 30-40 mph in the other direction? How can this line even be there, when it cannot be seen and its movements cannot be tracked? How does this happen?

You see, there are a lot of things that I don’t know.  There are a lot of things that imply escape my simple mind.  I could go on for pages and pages about the things I don’t know because the natural world is extremely complex.  Not only is there a natural order to all things in this earth, but there is a natural order to all things in the heaven.  Not only does each animal have a distinct defense system, but they also are each individually and uniquely made.  As I each leaf in every tree, each snowflake that falls from above, and ever human fingerprint from the beginning of time.  How is that even possible?

There is one who can answer all these questions.  He is the one who made my heart and knit together my DNA in my mothers’ womb. He is the one who made the plants and controls the weather. He is the one who made all things in earth and heaven, who created all the animals and the plants, and who designs every snowflake and fingerprint.  I know Him as God.  Yahweh.  El.  He is the great I Am.

There is one other thing I know.  I know that this God, the God who created all things and controls all things, the God who put the stars in place and calls them all by name, loves me and he loves you.  In fact, He loves you so much that He gave His only Son to die on a cross as a ransom for your sins.  He died, but then rose again, to give all who believe in Him eternal life. His name is Jesus Christ. 

I know that beyond a shadow of a doubt this is true.  I know because He did this for me.  I know He changed my life.  I know my sins are forgiven.  I know these sins are removed from my life as far as the East is from the West.  I know these things are true for me.  I know these things can be true for you.  I know he will forgive you.  I know he will wipe away all your sins and clean you a white as snow. I know you too can make heaven your eternal destination.  I know that the following prayer will bring this all about.

Jesus, please forgive me of my sins.  I repent and will turn away from them.  I ask you to come and take me as I am.  I accept you as my Savior and my Lord.  Thank you, Jesus for making me your child.

If you prayed this prayer from your heart, then you now know the maker of the universe.  You know the one who has all the answer.

Hmmm.  Maybe I know more than I think I know!

What a Mystery

What if I had a million stars to put in place?
What if I knew them all and called them all by name? 
I’d pick a special one to put up in the sky
Over the place where soon the Savior would arrive

What if the angels came to me with wondrous praise?
What if they asked me who should hear the news they gave?
I’d pick the ones who would be humble and obey
Shepherds out in the field who kept watch every day

CHORUS
Oh, what a mystery. Oh, what great love
The Son of God left His throne above
Oh, what compassion on sinners like me
He left His royal throne to die for me

What if the shepherds brough their flocks to see the King?
What if three wise men travelled far their gifts to bring?
There in a manger lay the Savior of the world
Today He’s just a babe but He’ll be Lord of Lords

CHORUS

BRIDGE
What if He had not come?  I’d still be lost.
No hope to look for, all peace is gone
Joy would be sorrow, True love unknown
If Jesus had not come this Christmas morn

CHORUS

Your Loving Plan

You Are Greater, Lord

I come before you now down on my knees
Hoping that you’ll hear my humble pleas
I know that I do not deserve your grace
But yet I pray and seek your holy face

I need a touch, Lord, down in my soul
I need a restoration that will make me whole
I’ve fallen far away from you
I really don’t know what to do
Except to come and bow before your throne

I know that you can bring me through the loudest storm
I know that you can make the raging sea be calm
I know that nothing is too hard for you to do
I lift my hands and lift my voice to worship you

I need a touch, Lord, down in my soul
I need a restoration that will make me whole
I’ve fallen far away from you
I really don’t know what to do
Except to come and bow before your throne

Great are you, Lord
Great are you, Lord
Greater than my doubts.  Greater than my fears
Greater than my troubles and my tears
Greater than the battle that I face
You are greater, Lord.  You are greater

Great are you, Lord
Great are you, Lord
Greater than this mountain in my way.
Greater than the biggest trial I face
Greater than the storms.  Greater over all
Your are greater, Lord.  You are greater

You bring victory.  You bring victory
You bring victory when I am on my knees
You bring victory.  You bring victory
You bring victory and hear my humble plea
This Time

Jesus Is My Pattern

I want to walk with integrity
Leaving behind all my iniquity
Living every day in the promises of the Lord
I want to speak with sincerity
So that giving grace is not a rarity
Help me to live like the one that I adore

Jesus is my pattern
His life I live after
All that I do should reflect His love for me
Help me hear you Father
Living a life that matters
I want to be all that you want me to be

Everything I have is yours
I come humbly to your throne
Surrendering my life to you in every way
I adore you Lord
I will give you more
More than ever before starting today