"Count it all joy when you fall into various trials."

Posts tagged ‘forgiveness of sin’

Love Story

Once upon a time far away and long ago – this is how many stories start, but this story is right here, now, and today! The setting may seem to be somewhere else, but all of the things that have roots in the Scripture are here and now! So – here we go!

We have heard that God is love and he wants us to love Him, but we have also heard really bad stuff about him. We call them ‘Acts of God’ which include tornadoes, hurricanes, floods and other mega disasters. If there is a car accident and a child is hopelessly hurt or killed, we blame God. Why do we do that? Did we ever honestly attempt to figure out if God is responsible for all these bad things? Is it possible that we as well as other created beings could be responsible?

We have heard the Bible stories so much that they sound all together too familiar. We don’t even get what they are saying. Jesus came as a baby, grew up, did some stuff, got a bunch of people mad and they crucified him, but He showed them and rose from the dead and then went up into heaven. Who buys that? Why does it matter?

We can look at this story in a different way.

Father God wanted a family that would choose to love Him. So he did a really risky thing. He made a special race of people who were capable of living on a level equal with Him but he gave them free choice. They could choose to love Him or not. The ‘or not’ part is where the risk is.

His first son was Adam was a created being and then he created his daughter, Eve. They had it all! He met all their needs by providing a garden that He Himself planted. They could eat anything in the garden with the exception of only one tree. He came to them every day and they walked and talked together. They were learning about this amazing place. Except for the garden, the planet was in a mess, and He wanted Adam and Eve to occupy it and make it all beautiful. They were to make other children in the god-class. They would be like Him but they would not be Him. They would be able to do amazing things. Everything was there for them to enjoy with meaningful work in establishing dominion as co-rulers.

But, the reason the planet was in a mess was that one of God’s heavenly created beings – a beautiful archangel named Lucifer made a choice and led a rebellion in heaven – and God exiled him to earth. He raged around the planet because he had lost his most favored status. He turned earth into a chaotic place with havoc everywhere. The Scripture says, “the world was without form and void and darkness was upon the face of the deep.” The Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, “Let there be light, and there was light!” He created everything that was made.

There Adam and Eve were on the earth, in a beautiful garden, and they were enjoying themselves, but Lucifer was roaming freely intent on spoiling Father God’s plan. He took on the form of a beautiful serpent and began to dialog with them about the forbidden tree. He did what he is still doing today. He created doubt in the goodness and loving kindness of Father. He convinced Adam and Eve that Father was withholding something. Father had withheld nothing including the knowledge of good and evil. They just were not mature enough to understand it. They lacked ‘No-Thing!’ But doubt had its way and the deceiver won the day. They ate the forbidden fruit and started the cycle of sin that has created storms, accidents and disasters. Now, the longer we live on this earth, the more the sin cycle creates chaos.

Father loves them and knew what they had done, but He came to the Garden anyway. When they heard Father in the Garden, they hid, then they blamed each other and God explained to them what forces they had set in motion. He killed innocent animals, shed their blood and covered their sin. God’s love always covers. The Scriptures say that without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sin. Then He put them out of the Garden and set up angelic guards to protect the Tree of Life.

Father God knew from the foundation of the world that we would need to be rescued and He, His Son Jesus, and the Holy Spirit put a wonderful plan into effect. He would send his Son to earth to shed His precious, sinless blood and wipe out the sin that man put into effect by his disobedience and mankind would be restored to him. All they had to do was to choose him. Then God would teach them all the things he had planned for them from the foundation of the world. As they draw near to Him, he draws near to them. In His Presence is fullness of joy!

We can now eat from the Tree of Life and go back to the Garden-life and walk with Father because of the Son. He sent the Holy Spirit to live inside us as our constant companion, guide and friend. We can occupy and bring heaven to earth by walking with Father every day in Jesus name.

So, you have a choice. I had a choice. I chose Him. I KNOW He loves me. I KNOW He loves you. Choose Him and prove His love.

It is easy to do. The Bible says that those who call on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ shall be saved. Read John 3:16, 17. Find out how much He loves you and that He is just waiting for you to call out to Him. Each of us come to the realization of who He is in a different way. For me, I was driving down the road, listening to the radio preacher when God took over his voice and I knew for sure that He was real. I just began to say, “I’m sorry Jesus. I just didn’t know. I didn’t know.” So it isn’t a formula, it is a heart thing. Ask Him to make Himself real and I promise that He will.

Genesis 1, 2, 3

Matthew 26:28

Luke 22:20

John 15:26, 16:13

Acts 20:28

Ephesians 1:7, 2:13

Colossians 1:14, 20

Hebrews 9:12, 14, 10:19, 22

1 John 1:7, 5:8

Revelation 1:5, 5:9, 7:14, 12:11

Aside

The Farm

THE FARM

The screen door on the old farm-house slammed shut.  Shouting for Grandma, I ran in, breathless.  I had been on a tramp in the woods and was reporting in.  My parents were on vacation and I was privileged to come to the country.  I loved the quiet and I thought of it as my special place in the whole world.

Grandma and Grandpa listened to the radio every night which played the Lone Ranger and the Bohemian Band.  We would listen or play cards at night before we would go to bed.  I can still see the small parlor with the dining room table, shining wood cabinets with glass doors, and the african rosewood clock with a pendulum that chimed on the hour.  It was alive with love and activity.

When I would walk down the lane, just beyond the bridge, a choke cherry tree would have fragrant blooms in early spring.  The finger shaped blossoms mesmerized me.  At the base of the tree, the dirt of the lane was a soft sandy texture unlike any that I have ever felt since.  At the flat wooden bridge that connected the lane to the farm buildings, I would sit down, dangle my feet over the side and watch the dark green moss waving in the crystal clear water just above the pebbles and gravel on the bottom.  iridescent shimmery blue and black dragon flies darted around the wispy blossoms shooting up from the moss.  It was a time to reflect on the beauty of God’s creation.

This is where I first knew God’s voice.  It wasn’t strong but he spoke to me in several ways.  There were things that he showed me about who I was and that I couldn’t be anyone else; that the people in the world had lives of their own and that they didn’t just start into motion when I entered the room.  (Talk about being self-centered!)  He showed me things about my future and about the nature around me.  He taught me faithfulness through Stubby, our collie dog.  It was the sweet, innocent times of a child.  It was peace and discovery.

Today, I am learning to feel God’s presence within me.  Yes, I did say feeling.  When the Scriptures speak of the heart, it is the Holy Spirit’s Presence within you because of having accepted Jesus’ finished work.  This feeling is like an inner hug and goosebumps.  Father speaks to my heart.  He comforts, confronts, instructs and encourages me.  I am learning to know Him face-to-face.  I close my eyes and find myself in the heavenly throne room where Father dwells in unapproachable light – except I can approach Him, because I belong to Him.

For a long time, I was afraid to draw near because there were things in my life I wasn’t ready to release, but it was a foolish fear.  When I drew near to Him, He drew near to me and welcomed me.  The sin fell off of me the closer I got to Him and I entered into His love.  I was warm, protected, sheltered and loved.  He wasn’t mad at me.  He knew that I couldn’t do it without Jesus and so He provided a Way to Life and Life more abundantly.

Being at the Farm was the best I could do here on the earth, but there is nothing that compares with what the Father opens to me, when I open my heart.  I just surrender and say, “I blew it!  Help!”  He just gathers me up in His arms and holds me.

Won’t you draw near?  Visualize Him and walk through the door – Jesus Christ – He is the door.  Without Him there is no way, but ask Jesus to come into your heart and the Way is open.

Tell me, can you hear God’s voice?  Are you willing to draw near?  Write to me and know that I will pray for you.

URL:  https://joyousbells.wordpress.com/2012/02/16/the-farm/

Other links:

http://swimlifelessons.wordpress.com and look at the Happily Ever After Post

http://pliableheart.wordpress.com and look at Resurrecting Feelings

http://www.christianblog.com/blog/kiwigirl/to-enter-the-throne-room/

Confirming Scripture

Revelation 1:15
His  feet were like burnished bronze, when it has been made to glow in a furnace, and His  voice was like the sound of many waters.

James 4:8
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.  Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and  purify your hearts, you  double-minded.

Hebrews 10:22
let us  draw near with a  sincere heart in  full assurance of faith, having our hearts  sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies  washed with pure water.

Hebrews 7:25
Therefore He is able also to  save  forever those who  draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to  make intercession for them.

Hebrews 4:16
Therefore let us  draw near with  confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

John 14:6
Jesus *said to him, “I am  the way, and  the truth, and  the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.

Hebrews 4:16
Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

Aside

Love Story . . .

LOVE STORY . . .

Once upon a time far away and long ago – this is how many stories start, but this story is right here, now, and today!  The setting may seem to be somewhere else, but all of the things that have roots in the Scripture are here and now!  So – here we go!

We have heard that God is love and he wants us to love Him, but we have also heard really bad stuff about him.  We call them  ‘Acts of God’ which include tornadoes, hurricanes, floods and other mega disasters.  If there is a car accident and a child is hopelessly hurt or killed, we blame God.  Why do we do that?  Did we ever honestly attempt to figure out if God is responsible for all these bad things?  Is it possible that we as well as other created beings could be responsible?

We have heard the Bible stories so much that they sound all together too familiar.  We don’t even get what they are saying.  Jesus came as a baby, grew up, did some stuff, got a bunch of people mad and they crucified him, but He showed them and rose from the dead and then went up into heaven.  Who buys that?  Why does it matter?

We can look at this story in a different way.

Father God wanted a family that would choose to love Him.  So he did a really risky thing.  He made a special race of people who were capable of living on a level equal with Him but he gave them free choice.  They could choose to love Him or not.  The ‘or not’ part is where the risk is.

His first son was Adam was a created being and then he created his daughter, Eve.  They had it all!  He met all their needs by providing a garden that He Himself planted.  They could eat anything in the garden with the exception of only one tree.  He came to them every day and they walked and talked together.  They were learning about this amazing place.  Except for the garden, the planet was in a mess, and He wanted Adam and Eve to occupy it and make it all beautiful.  They were to make other children in the god-class.  They would be like Him but they would not be Him.  They would be able to do amazing things.  Everything was there for them to enjoy with meaningful work in establishing dominion as co-rulers.

But, the reason the planet was in a mess was that one of God’s heavenly created beings – a beautiful archangel named Lucifer made a choice and led a rebellion in heaven – and God exiled him to earth.  He raged around the planet because he had lost his most favored status.  He turned earth into a chaotic place with havoc everywhere.  The Scripture says, “the world was without form and void and darkness was upon the face of the deep.”  The Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.  And God said, “Let there be light, and there was light!”  He created everything that was made.

There Adam and Eve were on the earth, in a beautiful garden, and they were enjoying themselves, but Lucifer was roaming freely intent on spoiling Father God’s plan.  He took on the form of a beautiful serpent and began to dialog with them about the forbidden tree.  He did what he is still doing today.  He created doubt in the goodness and loving  kindness of Father.  He convinced Adam and Eve that Father was withholding something.  Father had withheld nothing including the knowledge of good and evil.  They just were not mature enough to understand it.  They lacked ‘No-Thing!’  But doubt had its way and the deceiver won the day.  They ate the forbidden fruit and started the cycle of sin that has created storms, accidents and disasters.  Now, the longer we live on this earth, the more the sin cycle creates chaos.

Father loves them and knew what they had done, but He came to the Garden anyway.  When they heard Father in the Garden, they hid, then they blamed each other and God explained to them what forces they had set in motion.  He killed innocent animals, shed their blood and covered their sin.  God’s love always covers.  The Scriptures say that without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sin.  Then He put them out of the Garden and set up angelic guards to protect the Tree of Life.

Father God knew from the foundation of the world that we would need to be rescued and He, His Son Jesus, and the Holy Spirit put a wonderful plan into effect.  He would send his Son to earth to shed His precious, sinless blood and wipe out the sin that man put into effect by his disobedience and mankind would be restored to him.  All they had to do was to choose him.  Then God would teach them all the things he had planned for them from the foundation of the world.  As they draw near to Him, he draws near to them.  In His Presence is fullness of joy!

We can now eat from the Tree of Life and go back to the Garden-life and walk with Father because of the Son.  He sent the Holy Spirit to live inside us as our constant companion, guide and friend.  We can occupy and bring heaven to earth by walking with Father every day in Jesus name.

So, you have a choice.  I had a choice.  I chose Him.  I KNOW He loves me.  I KNOW He loves you.  Choose Him and prove His love.

It is easy to do.  The Bible says that those who call on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ shall be saved.  Read John 3:16, 17.  Find out how much He loves you and that He is just waiting for you to call out to Him.  Each of us come to the realization of who He is in a different way.  For me, I was driving down the road, listening to the radio preacher when God took over his voice and I knew for sure that He was real.  I just began to say, “I’m sorry Jesus.  I just didn’t know.  I didn’t know.”  So it isn’t a formula, it is a heart thing.  Ask Him to make Himself real and I promise that He will.

url:  https://joyousbells.wordpress.com/2012/02/10/love-story

http://pliableheart.wordpress.com

http://swimlifelessons.wordpress.com/

Genesis 1, 2, 3

Matthew 26:28

Luke 22:20

John 15:26, 16:13

Acts 20:28

Ephesians 1:7, 2:13

Colossians 1:14, 20

Hebrews 9:12, 14, 10:19, 22

1 John 1:7, 5:8

Revelation 1:5, 5:9, 7:14, 12:11

Aside

Desire

DESIRE

On a beautiful horse farm in Kentucky,  a tiny AKC registered Irish setter puppy was born.  He was perfect and his owner loved him.  One day a man came by looking for work and the owner felt he was unsavory and sent him on his way.  After he left, they found that their beloved puppy was missing.  The owner looked for them both, but to no avail.

The man who had taken the puppy was named Hurley and he found work at a salvage yard as the night watchman.  He trained the puppy to be a guard dog and named him ‘Dog.’  It was a dirty place and as Dog grew, he became very scruffy and untidy looking.  His long fur became clumped and matted.  The man tried to make him mean but the nature bred into him was to be kind and loving.  He had to bark when ever there were intruders or Hurley would prod him with a long ugly stick.  He was kept in a cage all day with no food or drink, and when he was let out at night he was fed dry dog food and water out of a dirty dish.  The man was not one to be kind and somehow the dog knew that this was not the life he was meant to live.

Each day was misery as Dog tried to sleep with all the noise of the busy salvage yard.  The nights were worse as he was kept moving by the lazy night watchman prodding him with a long stick.  He desired to be free.  Nothing felt right and he was in deep despair.  Every night as he patrolled the fence, he looked for a way of escape.

One late afternoon, a well-dressed man came to the salvage yard.  Hurley was just getting Dog out of the cage and preparing to feed him.  The man took one look at the scruffy mess of a dog and recognized the fine lines of a champion.  Deep inside he begin to wonder if this was his lost puppy.  He addressed Hurley and asked about the sorry-looking animal.  Hurley looked at him and narrowed his eyes and rasped, “What do you want to know for?”  The man replied, “How much do you want for him?”  Hurley almost shouted, “He is not for sale!”  The gentleman looked at him and said,  “Would you take $200?”  Greed lit a fire in the grubby man’s heart and he pondered for a moment.  “Why do you want this ugly dog?”  The man in the suit replied, “I’d like to give him a better life.”  “Well,” Hurley said,” you can give me a better life also.  I’ll sell him to you for $1000!”  As the suit reached for his wallet, he said “Done!”  and peeled off ten $100 bills.  Hurley took the money and growled, “I shoulda asked for $3000!”

The gentleman opened his car door and beckoned the scruffy sad dog to get in, but he hung back.  Hurley got out his prod and poked at the ugly critter and said, “Dog, go!” and waved the stick toward the car.  With his tail between his legs, he nervously got in the back seat of the Cadillac Escalade and laid down on the floor.  The motor started and his new owner drove through the gates and out of the prison

The new owner’s name was Franklin and he owned a horse farm not far away.  He knew in his heart that the pitiful hound was his lost puppy.  He took him home and called the vet and the groomers.  After a dog spa day and a compete medical check up, the dog felt strange.  He saw other beautiful dogs that were being petted and loved.  He longed to be one of them, but he knew it could never be. He was from a different world. The spa day had resulted in all of his matted fur being removed.  Now he was bald and even uglier than before and he was embarrassed.  He slunk into the breeding barn and found a horse blanket in a back corner and laid down, content to be alone, clean and away from the hated man and the salvage yard.

Time passed and the owner had the dog tested and found that he was indeed the lost litter pup.  They named him Champion of the Overcomers and registered his blood line. From then on “Champ” was his name though it took Champ awhile to recognize he was being called.  Franklin taught him to play and took him for long runs in the beautiful meadows.  He felt their love.  His new owner sat on the grass and held him and petted him.  His fur grew out and he looked so different. He felt brand new.  This is who the lost dog was meant to be. He was a beautiful pedigreed champion with perfect classic lines.  Champ was groomed regularly.  Franklin began to train him for an upcoming dog show.  He would be a real surprise to the local  kennel crowd.

Champ loved the attention and responded to the commands with joy.  When he went through the paces at the contest, he swept the awards winning his class and ‘Best of Show.’  Franklin and his family were proud of him and he was very happy.  So the ugly ‘junk yard’ dog became a true Champion with ribbons and trophies and experienced his true life.  He knew he was born for this.

We, too, are made for greatness and for the One who owns us.  We have fallen so far below the privilege of who He created us to be and we live in pain, lack, and despair.  Broken relationships make trusting others difficult.  Deep within each of us there is a desire – an ache to be more.  We don’t know how to get there but we know  somewhere there is an answer.  We look for more, but the desire has grown distant.  We try drugs, alcohol, sex and food to cover our pain only to find our drug of choice only makes things worse. And just like Dog, we have a Hurley or several Hurleys in our lives to tell us we are worthless and keeps us moving through the junk yard of despair.

So,” who will rescue us from this life” of pain and broken dreams?  Thank God, He sent Jesus Christ to redeem us out of despair, to fulfill our lost desire and bring us back to our Great Father who loves us and wants us to love Him in return.  He has a beautiful life for anyone who will draw near.

Now I want you to know that this is not the ‘religion’ that your parents tried to shove down your throat.  This is a relationship with the great Creator God of the Universe. Contrary to popular press, He is a good God.  His ‘loving kindness endures forever.  You can trust HIm.  You can know Him and He will talk to you.  He already loves you.

So, where is He when you need Him?

He is waiting. The Bible says that those who call on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ shall be saved.  And also, it tells us that if we draw near to Him, He will draw near to us.  Just like the poor lost dog when he stepped into the Cadillac.  He didn’t know that this step would set him free to be in an amazing relationship with his new owner.

Find out how much God loves you and that He is just waiting for you to call out to Him and move toward Him.  Each of us comes to the realization of who He is in a different way.  For you, it may be reading this post and realizing that there is more.  For me, I was driving down the road, listening to a radio preacher when God took over his voice and I knew for sure that God was real.  I just began to say, “I’m sorry Jesus.  I just didn’t know.  I didn’t know.”  So it isn’t a formula, it is a heart thing.  Ask Him to make Himself real to you and I promise that He will.

John 3:16 – 17  God so loved the world (put your name here), that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.17For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world (put your name here); but that the world (put your name here also) through Him might be saved.

Scriptures for further study:

Romans 10:11 & 13 10For with the heart man believes unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.  11For the scripture says, Whosoever believes on him shall not be ashamed.  . . .  13For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. (You can be a whosoever today.)

Psalm 20:4 -5  May He grant you your heart’s desire And fulfill all your counsel!  We will sing for joy over your victory, And in the name of our God we will set up our banners. May the LORD fulfill all your petitions.

Psalm 38:9  9 Lord, all my desire is [e]before You; And my sighing is not hidden from You.

Psalm 107:27-31  They reeled and staggered like a drunken man, And were at their wits’ end. 28 Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, And He brought them out of their distresses. 29 He caused the storm to be still, So that the waves of the sea were hushed. 30 Then they were glad because they were quiet, So He guided them to their desired haven. 31 Let them give thanks to the LORD for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men! NASB

Psalm 145:19 He will  fulfill the desire of those who fear (this means to regard Him with respect and awe) Him; He will also  hear their cry and will save them. NASB

Proverbs 10:24 What the wicked fears will come upon him, But the desire of the righteous will be granted. NASB

Proverbs 13:19a Desire realized is sweet to the soul. . . NASB

Proverbs 13:12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick, But desire fulfilled is a tree of life. NASB

Aside

Friendship

FRIENDSHIP

Lately I have been pondering about friendships and relationships in general.  What makes a friend?  What is the difference between a friend and an acquaintance?  What if I am a friend to them, but they are not to me?    When one marries another, there is an expectation of permanence so why the divorce rate?  Why do relationships end?

Definition of FRIEND in the Webster’s:

1a : one attached to another by affection or esteem

1b:  acquaintance

2a : one that is not hostile

2b : one that is of the same nation, party, or group

3 : one that favors or promotes something (as a charity)

4 : a favored companion

There were more definitions, but these were the important ones.  I noticed that there is nothing there about the length and duration of the relationship.  It is my experience that some of the some relationships are forever and some are only for a season.

I know that there have been times in my life when I have wounded and offended a valued friend.  Often they have forgiven me, but the trust was destroyed and the relationship was damaged and never quite the same.  I find that I am still saddened by my actions.
I love this quote that I found in the comments at Webster’s:
“A friend is someone who is there through the good as well as the bad. A friend understands a point of view while disagreeing with it. A friend remains a friend through adversity. A friend takes the time to listen despite a lack of interest. The next time someone deletes you as a “friend”, ask yourself, were they really a friend?”
We all desire healthy intimacy with our friends and our spouse, but often the thought of letting down the wall terrifies us.  What if we let that one in and we are wounded?  What if we don’t?
I wrote a poem years ago after my divorce from my husband of eleven years.  The first lines are:  “The barriers between us are all carefully maintained.
                   They are nurtured by guilt, fear, tears and pain.
                   We hold ourselves off at a distance insulated and protected,
                    Unable to make a commitment out of fear of being rejected.
                   And the armour imprisons the wearer instead of making him free . “.
There is more, but you get the idea.
Scripture says that there is One who sticks closer than a brother.  I am privileged to know that One.  When He lives in my relationships, the loyalty and the trust level are much higher.  When the wound is from a fellow who is on the same path, I must trust in the One who created us all.
I wonder if true friendship and relationship are even possible apart from knowing Jesus and the Father?  I am in awe that I can now be wounded by a close companion and walk in peace recognizing that they are not my enemy but one who is struggling to do His will.  For me, I have determined that I will be a friend and cover another’s offenses.  I, too, will be wary if the door they closed opens again but I will receive them..

To conclude this, I choose to love those I have wounded and those who have wounded me.  I choose to live in peace with betrayal.  It is okay to hurt me.  I forgive and release tthe offender and I choose to walk in freedom.  Thank you Father God for your amazing peace and love.
Related Sites:
What to do when friendship breaks down. http://www.whenfriendshiphurts.com/blog/
Scripture References:
Proverbs 17:17, 18:24, 27:9
Psalm 41:9

Life and death

Those of us who live on this planet have come to believe that we are in a battle between good and evil.  We know we should want good but we are captivated by evil.  Evil seems naughty and enticing.  There is an allure.  Skulls and death are a banner of the hopelessness that many of us feel.  We wear it and somehow it makes it seem better.  We even make fun of people who seem to be good.  We call them “goodies” and brown-nosers.  So what is the God-story in this premise?

Let’s look at it this way.

Eve took a big bite of the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil and it was very good.  She immediately offered it to her husband, Adam.  He knew he shouldn’t eat it.  He knew what God had told him.  He could eat of any tree in the Garden, but this tree was off-limits.  He looked in the eyes of his beautiful bride and saw her pleading look and he crumbled.  He reached out and took a big bite.  He knew at once it was a mistake!  The biggest mistake of his life!

It hadn’t been many days since he had been formed in the earth and God had breathed Spirit-life into him. It had been an awesome time.  God meeting them and spending time with them.  Awesome!  But now something was very wrong.  The Spirit-life was dead and unresponsive.  He had known so many things by the Spirit and now – well, now, NOW!  He could only look around and see things that he had looked at many times and they were not as beautiful.  They were lacking.  The Light had gone out.  He looked at Eve and for the first time, he realized that she was uncovered and it gave him odd stirrings. Inside he ached to touch her.  He had never felt this way before and it frightened him!  He grabbed her hand and ran behind a nearby tree and began to make coverings out of leaves.  It was an amateur effort but it would have to do.  If he couldn’t see her beautiful body, he hoped the ache would subside.  This wasn’t the romance that Father God had explained to him when he brought her into him.

God came and told them the consequences of their choice.  The man would labor;  he would fight weeds and struggle to raise food.  The woman would have pain in child-birth.  The serpent would travel on his belly and eat dirt for the rest of his life and the woman would hate him.

There was good news – a promise that God would send His Son to save them out of this great loss and the serpent would bruise His heel, but He would crush the his head.  With those proclamations, Adam and Eve were put outside the Garden and the way back in to it was guarded by angels so they could not return and eat of the Tree of Life and in their fallen condition live forever.

Adam looked back knowing that they had really messed up!  The Garden was closed and the Spirit-life was gone.  He was trying to figure it all out in his head and it gave him a headache.  Thus Adam and Eve began an eternal battle with good pitted against evil.  Good on the moral high ground and evil at the more  alluring level, enticing them to do their own thing;  then the battle really began.  Their sons began to argue.  In the climax of their lives outside the Garden, their son Cain killed their son Able in a jealous rage.  Death got a foothold in our lives.

Adam and Eve grieved and regretted not having trusted Father God.  They longed for the Son to come save them and they looked forward to that day.

Today we are still courting death and allowing the enemy to defeat us.  We think about murder and suicide caught in this death pull.  We delight to do our own thing and at times, this means death is attractive.

Now to be clear – God didn’t do this to us.  We did it to ourselves.  It is in our DNA.  We are under the same proclamations that Adam and Eve were under when the Garden was closed to them.  But God . . .God’s plan. . . He sent Jesus, his own Son to earth.  He lived just as we do but he did it without turning away from Father God.  Ultimately, He traded His life for ours.  Jesus allowed mankind to nail Him to a  the cross of Calvary which we sometimes call a tree.  He died for you and me and now Jesus lives for you and me.  He came out of the grave and rose up so we can live.  What love!  What an event!  It had to have shaken their world.

The media of the day were the rulers from Rome and the religious leaders.  They began the propaganda machine saying His body had been stolen.  They told the soldiers who were guarding His body to say that they were asleep.  It was a cover-up!  If they had fallen asleep, they would have been executed by the Roman guard.

Yet, He walked among them and appeared to many people.  He is alive!  He is Life.  He brought us Spirit-Life then and He is still bringing it to those who want it now!  He brings all the Life that we can handle and more.  He is to us the Tree of Life, so now, we can eat freely and live forever with Him but, we just have to make our own choice.  We can continue to live – caught in the web of deceit and death – or we can choose Life.  It is simple to choose!  Call on the name of the Lord Jesus – and you will be saved back to Spirit-life!

Once again able to live in true reality, relationship and romance with Father and each other.  This is Father’s plan before the world was even conceived and it was because of His love.  He made us so He could love us and He wants us to return that love.

He says, “I have set before you life and death . . . blessing and cursing . . . therefore, choose life!  It is better.”

It is easy to do.  The Bible says that those who call on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ shall be saved.  Read John 3:16, 17.  Find out how much He loves you and that He is just waiting for you to call out to Him.  Each of us come to the realization of who He is in a different way.  For me, I was driving down the road, listening to the radio preacher when God took over his voice and I knew for sure that Father God was real.  I just began to say, “I’m sorry Jesus.  I just didn’t know.  I didn’t know.”  So it isn’t a formula, it is a heart thing.  Ask Him to make Himself real and I promise that He will.

Genesis 1, 2, 3

Deuteronomy 30:15,16

John 6:33, 35, 47, 48

John 10:10, 28

Romans 6:23

2 Corinthians 4:10

Galatians 2:20

2 Timothy 1:1, 10

1 John 1:2, 2:16, 25, 5:11

Revelation 2:7, 22:2, 14

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