Ponder Your Treasure

Luke 2: 15 – 20

When the angels had departed from them into heaven, the shepherds began saying to one another, “Let’s go straight to Bethlehem, then, and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” And they came in a hurry and found their way to Mary and Joseph, and the baby as He lay in the manger. When they had seen Him, they made known the statement which had been told them about this Child. And all who heard it were amazed about the things which were told them by the shepherds. But Mary treasured all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds went back, glorifying and praising God for all that they had heard and seen, just as had been told them.

One of the things I love about the shepherds is that they did something when they heard the good word of the Lord. I think that sometimes when we hear the voice of the Lord, it requires something of us. These shepherds dropped everything and sought the Lord. The Bible encourages us time and time again to “seek the Lord.” Well, they did, and just as we are promised if we shall seek him, they found him.

The best part of this passage to me is in hearing about Mary. It must have been quite a task being the mother of the Christ. Wow! It is hard even to comprehend. This passage gives us a sneak peak in how she accomplished her charge. In the beginning, she treasured all that God revealed about Jesus. She treasured these bits of wisdom and pondered them continually.

Have you ever wondered what became of Joseph, Mary’s husband? Perhaps he didn’t treasure and ponder the revelations and prophecies about the babe. He too had an angelic visit, his in a dream, where the angel told him of the forthcoming birth. Did he treasure the words of the angel and ponder them in his heart? We don’t know because he just disappears from the scene. Mary never forgot the prophecies about the child. She kept them close all her days.

There is a lesson in here for us too. We are to treasure Jesus’ words and continually ponder them in our hearts. They are to stay before our eyes and in the midst of our thoughts. They are life and light. Think of that when you see all those pretty lights on the Christmas tree. They are little representatives of the Word of God lighting up your life.

Cheer, Treasure & Sweetness

Psalm 19: 9 – 10             Passion

Every one of the Lord’s commands is right; following them brings cheer. Nothing he says ever needs to be changed. The rarest treasures of life are found in his truth. That’s why I prize God’s word like others prize the finest gold. Nothing brings the soul such sweetness as seeking his living words.

Following God’s commands brings cheer. Could it be, then, that is the reason He gave them to us. If you accept the premise that Yahweh is a loving God, or to go further, that He is love, then wouldn’t it follow that the direction, instruction and commands He gives us are for our good? Do we really believe that God is emotionally damaged? Many people have not come to the conclusion that His directions are meant to keep us from harm and lead us to paths of prosperity. If they are not meant for our good then are we hypothesizing that He is tyrannical, that the only reason He commands us is to subjugate us? Is He really that emotional infantile and injured that He has to dominate and suppress us? If we do not believe that God commandments are given to us for our good, then there has to be another reason and the only conclusion I see is that He is an oppressor. So, which is it? If we conclude that God is good, then we must accept that He is good all of the time and that everything He does is motivated by love. Then the question becomes, if we accept that God is good all of the time and that all He does is motivated by love, then why do we resist His instruction? Why do some of us believe Him to be a harsh and cruel task master? Why don’t we seek Him day and night? He is seeking us day and night. His words, instructions and yes, even commandments, are meant to bless us. They are absolute truth. They do not need alteration because every word He speaks or has ever spoken is right. That is one of the reasons they always cheer our hearts. There is no error so they always lead us in right paths.

I do value His word, as I know you do. This translation says the rarest treasures of life are found in His truth. That is a full statement. His truth is the ultimate divining rod. His truth leads us to the gold mine, the diamond find. The most rare prize which exists can be found in His Word. “That is why I prize God’s word like others prize the finest gold.” Don’t get me wrong. I like gold and diamonds but they ultimately pale compared to God’s wisdom. Further, I believe the way to them is through His direction. All the good things in this life and the life we will live beyond the earth are in Him. That is why the next sentence in this passage is, “Nothing brings the soul such sweetness as seeking his living words.” This statement is a conclusion to the previous thoughts. Living in His words, seeking His living Words – two ideas, one great passion. This is a life well-lived, to seek the Lord our God with all our hearts, all our souls, all our strength and all our passion.

I love watching your life change as you increasingly seek the Lord, His words and His ways. In them is the life, not just simple existence, but a life worth living, a life which is full. Don’t just take up space on the planet. Live to the fullest. Seek the Father zealously. Prize His words. Give the Word great value and weight in your life. Take God at His word and hold Him to it. He can handle it and you are going to see even more change. 2019 is almost upon us. Let’s begin to determine what we want for the new year. I want more blessing for you. I want you blessed in the day and in the night, coming in and going out, blessed in the city and blessed in the country. I resolve to press in with my study so that I can be used more powerfully by our Lord and God to insinuate more of His blessing into every Word of the Day and ultimately, into your life. Be blessed.

Guarded Treasure

John 14: 27

Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you.

Jesus was leaving planet earth. He told his disciples what was to come. Can you even imagine how distraught they must have been? I place myself in their shoes and it seems devastating. Not only were they about to lose their leader, but also their best friend and even beyond that, their Lord. He was everything to them, truly. Then he announced he was leaving. Oh, heart of woe!

Jesus knew the anguish of their souls. I am sure he was feeling sorrow as well and probably concern for them. He gave them something to soothe their souls, a promise for their well-being. He told them that he was going to leave his peace here for them. That would have been a profound statement to them because they had witnessed him remain cool under tremendous pressure. They knew his peace was special.

This same peace is available to us today. He left his peace here on the earth for whoever wishes it or needs it. In his peace is such tranquility. It literally has calming, restorative breath in it. It enables us to face trying situations without raising our blood pressure. In his peace we have the ability to face all manner of challenging circumstances while remaining in calm confidence instead of dread and panic.

You can see that it is very precious. One of the things our heavenly Father told me in my journaling is that the devil wants to steal this peace from me. Father encouraged me to resist the devil’s attempts to steal my peace, that is the peace which Jesus gave me. I see how valuable it is and that is was a key component in Jesus’ last days. He knew each one of us would need his help on a daily basis and his peace was the treasure he gave. The Father showed me that this gift should be guarded.

Don’t let anyone have what Jesus has given you, whether that be his peace, freedom, salvation, acceptance, redemption, etc. Why should I give some idiot on the freeway the power to steal the peace Jesus gave me? What stressor is important enough to you to allow it to steal your peace? There is nothing that is worth it. Hang on to this valuable treasure from Jesus. Peace is health, it is feeling good. Don’t let it go!

Go Deep

Proverb 2: 6

For the LORD gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding.

You probably like all of God’s good gifts. Where does wisdom rank? I had a friend once who, though she had spent years in the Bible, said she never really got into Proverbs. This one of the first books I was attracted to because wisdom is all over it. I figure if you have the wisdom of God, you are likely going to be in pretty good shape.

The question becomes, “How do you position yourself for God’s wisdom? Where do you place yourself so you can hear the knowledge and understanding that comes from His mouth? Verses 1 – 5 give us those answers: “My son, if you will receive my words and treasure my commandments within you, make your ear attentive to wisdom, incline your heart to understanding; for if you cry for discernment, lift your voice for understanding; if you seek her as silver and search for her as for hidden treasures; then you will discern the fear of the Lord and discover the knowledge of God.” That’s good, isn’t it?

God actually wants to give you His wisdom. He has stored it up for you but there is something you must do. Sometimes I wish Father would rain all of His wisdom and goodness down upon us, but it just does not work that way. We must put ourselves in the position to receive. I often think of American football. The quarterback intends to pass the ball downfield to his wide receiver. It is his desire. However, if the wide receiver never runs his pattern, there is no one to throw to. We need to just run the pattern God called in the huddle and He will take care of getting us the ball. Then we can run with it.

Today’s word tells us which pass pattern to run so that we will receive wisdom, knowledge and understanding. You’ve got to want it, ask for it and listen. We have to pay attention to His words and commandments. Which commandments, you ask. Every word which proceeds from His mouth. In our seeking, there is finding. A hungry heart will be satisfied. Now, go deep!


Isaiah 33: 5 – 6

The LORD is exalted, for He dwells on high;
He has filled Zion with justice and righteousness.
And He will be the stability of your times,
A wealth of salvation, wisdom and knowledge;
The fear of the LORD is his treasure.

God gives us His justice and righteousness. The Bible says that we have become the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5: 21). We do not have to manufacture our own justice and righteousness. We have only to walk in His righteousness.

As we do, besides becoming our peace, he also becomes our stability. Another translation says that He becomes a “sure foundation” for us. In Him is a wealth of salvation for every situation. He saves us in all things. His salvation is more full than the salvation unto eternity with Him alone. It includes salvation anytime you need saving. We also receive a wealth of wisdom and knowledge so that we have His wisdom and knowledge for every circumstance of life.

And, as if that was not enough, we also walk in the reverence of the Lord, which is a gift from Him too. The reverence of the Lord, that relationship that we learn to walk in is a treasure trove in and of itself. Once you have the reverential love of the Lord in your heart, you have the key to unlocking anything and everything. It is the wisdom of God. The scripture says that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (Proverb 9: 10). You will not have need of anything because His wisdom, knowledge and power are on the scene to lead you into all righteousness which also leads you into all other things too. It is a cycle that keeps you filled up with all of the goodness of the Lord.

Treasure Trove

 Psalm 119: 161- 162

Princes persecute me without cause, but my heart stands in awe of Thy words. I rejoice at Thy word as one who finds great spoil.

The value of the Word of God, it cannot be overestimated. It has life and healing in it, but what, really, is the Word of God? Or stated differently, is the Bible synonymous with the Word of God?

I do not believe it is. To me the Bible is the physical replication of the Word of God. I do believe it is sacred text but the text alone is not what gives life to our bones. It is the living word that contains the miracle working power. At its most fundamental level the Word is Jesus (John 1: 14). At the highest level I would say that “The Word” is every pronouncement of God. It is every utterance that has ever proceeded from God’s lips. The question for us is what does any of this mean for my life, for our lives here in the earth? Understanding that the Bible is a recordation of God’s word is important. We actually have access to God’s diary. Think about that a moment. Now, let’s go to the next step. When we read the Bible we are just reading black text on a white page unless we allow the next level of engagement to manifest. That is where we recognize that the words that we read can be lifted off of the page. They can be ingested as the staff of life. No longer are they simple words but now they carry the voice of God. They are language but spoken language rather than written. We begin to hear the Father’s voice in our ear and in our spirits speaking life to us.

Then comes the next level of God’s Word to us. Not only do we hear His voice in the pages of the Bible but then we begin to hear His voice speaking to us about our lives. This is not a departure from the Bible or from the “Word of God” but rather an extension of same. God takes His heart, which is revealed so transparently in His word, and extends those principles to our specific life circumstances. They still are “The Word” and in a sense they still are the Bible because God will never, ever tell you anything that contradicts with the Bible. I just don’t think He has stopped speaking. He is still filling pages with His word. Maybe in the years to come, after the rapture, there will be a third testament. Perhaps some of us will have the job of compiling a new text. I don’t know but the point is that God is alive and He is still speaking. Not only that, but even the Bible is not in stasis. It breathes and speaks. God’s word is alive. Don’t think of His word as just a compiled book that we call the Holy Bible. Think of it as His breath leaving His mouth and breathing new life onto you. You can go into the pages of that book and the next thing you know it has jumped off of the page and is shouting joyous good news. It is dancing in your room and praising God.  

The Word of God is alive and it is precious. It is health and liberty, victory and life. We rejoice because God has given us His word but He isn’t done yet either. Listen to what He will speak to you today either through the Bible or whispered in your ear. Either way it is time to celebrate the Word of God.