Right after moving here, I received the most wonderful gift. (Even better than the green sandals)! It was the most perfectly timed, 4 week, no homework Beth Moore study. For those of you who are not familiar with her, she is a spunky, loud, southern, borderline obnoxious, from a rough background, thoroughly studied, hilarious student and teacher of the Bible. Now I consider myself to be somewhat spunky, but compared to Beth, I am downright Droopy. Like the cartoon dog. In a bad all-cotton wardrobe.
I fully intended back in June & July to process this teaching further by blogging out each week’s learning but neglected to do so, due to our family’s other adventures…so the time is now. I will now attempt to amaze you by condensing my favorite parts into bite-sized, read-while-you-act-like-you’re-working posts. I promise you will learn something cool, so read on.
Hebrews 11:6 And without faith, it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
So is it enough to believe that God “exists?” That He Is and that’s all there is to it? Well, uh, NO. The name God gave to Moses referring to himself is the cryptic “I am that I am.” Here’s where God says that to a trembling by the burning bush, uncertain, and hypothetically-questioning obedience Moses.
Exodus 3:13-14 Moses says to God, “Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you, and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’
(Because they thought the name of God was so sacred, they wouldn’t even say it outloud or write it fully. Now THAT’S respect! Plus, also, Moses didn’t really want to go so he was stalling.) Moses continues:
‘Then what shall I tell them?” 14 God said to Moses, “I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: I AM has sent me to you.’
Oh. Okay. That clears THAT up. The definition of the phrasing God gave Moses and us means not just “to exist” but “to be, to become, to come to pass, to be done, to happen, to be finished.” Beth said, “God does not wear out. What an attribute!” GOD IS whatever we need Him to be wherever we are. God is everything for us right now, today that he ever showed himself to be. Creator, Storm Stopper, Water Mover, Wilderness Provider, Too Bright to Look At, User of Normal People to do Awesome Things. Kinda reminds me of that red dot “I’m there” commercial for insurance. We state where we are, call out to Him and He’s there, sufficient for what we need, ready to make us better–physically, spiritually, emotionally, whatever. Especially if it’s a bad place red dot and we are humble enough to want/need/ask for help.
We need a first person revelation of God saying “I am…” to us. (I am your provider. I am your Maker and Tweaker. I am protecting you. I am forgiving you. I am ready for you to do something for me.)
We need a second person unshakable knowledge (without sight) and sincere praise conversation with God where we say and KNOW “You are…” to Him. (You are loving. You are patient. You are successful. You are strong enough to help me through this. You are aware of my limitations and have a plan better than mine.)
We need a third person witness to others where we say “He is…” to others. (Dude! Have you seen what I do well? Where I live? Where I work? That last vacation? How I got through that impossible challenge? GOD DID THAT for me! HE IS way better than I deserve!)
Isaiah 26:3 You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.
We can have perfect peace in our present, no matter what is happening around us, when we sit with God, “prop, lean upon, rest” what is “formed in our mind” on the knees of the Maker of that precious little head. **Here, Beth had someone sit in front of her, one step down (’cause you KNOW those Texas churches have the major honkin’ steps up to the platform) and just put that girl’s head down on her knees while she kept on speaking. Beth had her hands just sweetly on the sides of that volunteer’s head. What a picture. This picture has stayed with me OFTEN over the last weeks.**
God forms how we think about what we think.
Man am I relying on THAT new bit of information when temptation comes. I can rest my brain, even in the middle of temptation, on the God who knows the thoughts HE thinks towards ME. Even when I have no thoughts of him anywhere to be found.
KJV Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.
And what are we to do once we’re turned around and waiting and waiting and waiting for that expected end?
Isaiah 26:8 Yes, LORD, walking in the way of your laws, we wait for you; your name and renown are the desire of our hearts.
“Wait for” in Hebrew is “qawah” meaning to bind together by twisting and “to expect.” We are to keep walking while waiting, holding tight to God’s leg like a child sitting on Dad’s shoe, wrapped around his leg, holding on tight.
And THAT was just week 1! There’s three more weeks of this gold. I will pray that we will all know and apply the knowledge that HE IS and find ways to realize that God knows our “now” situation and wants to do a “now” work. All the live-long day.