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And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6 NASB)

Wonderful

Check this out – the word is not an adjective – it’s a noun. [Tweet This]

Another way to say it might be

He will be called Miracle!

Here – look where else this word is used:

Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders? (Exodus 15:11 KJV)

I will remember the works of the LORD: surely I will remember thy wonders of old. (Psalm 77:11 KJV)

Thou [art] the God that doest wonders: thou hast declared thy strength among the people. (Psalm 77:14 KJV)

And that is how Jesus lived. He was Mr. Miracle.

In fact when John the Baptist was in prison, he sent his disciples to Jesus to ask if He was in fact the Messiah, and the answer was:

Then Jesus answering said unto them, Go your way, and tell John what things ye have seen and heard; how that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, to the poor the gospel is preached. (Luke 7:22 KJV)

And when people wondered whether to believe in Jesus He told them to “believe me for the very works' sake.” (John 14:11 KJV)

Furthermore, He was a light who lit us up so we can shine, He is the miracle that miracled us so we can miracle. (right – spell and grammar check hated that)

Here is what I mean:

Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father. (John 14:12 NASB)

He truly is Wonderful!

Now it’s your turn to be wonderful!

Ben NelsonMerry Christmas!

See you tomorrow

Ben

 

3

SeedPod

A Psalm of Thanksgiving.

Make a joyful shout to the LORD, all you lands!
Serve the LORD with gladness;
Come before His presence with singing.
Know that the LORD, He is God;
It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves;
We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.
Enter into His gates with thanksgiving,
And into His courts with praise.
Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.
For the LORD is good;
His mercy is everlasting,
And His truth endures to all generations.

Psalms 100:1-5 NKJV

This is probably one of the top 10 Psalms. It is very familiar, and so the reading of it can lose its impact.

Let’s not let this happen today.

Today, I simply want to encourage you to read it, once slowly, and take notice of the instructions offered by the psalmist. Below I have highlighted items I have added to my ToDo list today.

Make a joyful shout to the LORD, all you lands!
Serve the LORD with gladness;
Come before His presence with singing.
Know that the LORD, He is God;
It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves;
We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.
Enter into His gates with thanksgiving,
And into His courts with praise.
Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.
For the LORD is good;
His mercy is everlasting,
And His truth endures to all generations.

So here is my ToDo list for today:

1) Shout Joyfully to the Lord
2) Serve the Lord and His people (when you do it unto the least…)
3) Express to the Lord how glad I am to help
4) Sing to the Lord
5) Meditate on Jesus’ in the following areas

His deity,
His role in creation,
His role as our shepherd
How He cares for our needs
Leads us
Protects us
Provides for us

6) Give thanks
7) Give the Lord Praise
8) Be thankful

[What is the difference between this and give thanks – hmmm – I am thinking giving thanks is something I do, something I say, whereas being thankful is my heart attitude. Can I put a heart attitude on my todo list? I believe I can!]

9) Bless His name

OK – sounds like a full day’s work – so I am off to get started.

Will you join my in getting some of this done today? Many hands [or mouths] make light work, there is much joy and praising to be done here.

Ben NelsonHave a blessed day

See you again soon

Be Calm and Keep Shining!

Ben

 

Press Here to Exit

Yesterday, after I blogged about prosperity, I had a great day. I meditated on the word and everything I put my hand to prospered, just like Psalm 1 promised.

How blessed is the man who does not
walk in the counsel of the wicked,
Nor stand in the path of sinners,
Nor sit in the seat of scoffers!

But his delight is in the law of the LORD,
And in His law he meditates day and night.

He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water,
Which yields its fruit in its season
And its leaf does not wither;
And in whatever he does, he prospers.

Psalms 1:1-3

So I decided to do a little experiment.

Late in the day, I decided that rather than glory in my wonderful Lord and Savior, I would feel sorry for myself. A couple of stupid circumstances that were out of my control, or perhaps I should say were the result of my inaction, got up in my face and said to me:

“Isn’t life unfair?”

Well, I decided to agree with them for a bit –
just as an experiment you understand
in the interest of science
for you, my readers

And I am happy to report back to you that the Bible is exactly correct! (who would have thunk it, eh?)

It was as though these little, stupid (can I say stupid in a G rated blog?) circumstances had a 200 horse power leaf blower and they pointed it right at my day’s prosperity.

All my joy blew out of the room.
All of my motivation seemed to be tumbling toward the door with it.
My productivity, my focus, my drive, my plan all cycloned together and exited, stage left.

The wicked are not so,
But they are like chaff which the wind drives away.
Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
Nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.

Psalms 1:4-5

To test my theory just a little further, I went to bed with my eyes directly on my own plight – self-pity central.

You won’t believe what happened!

When I woke up I was right there in my funk. Can you believe it? A good night sleep didn’t clear things up at all.

So here is the big secret.

The gates that lead to the presence of the Lord, where there is ample joy, pleasure, productivity, prosperity and life for all of us to enjoy, say “To enter be THANKFUL”

Inside those gates there is one of those automatic door buttons with a sign above it that says “press here to exit.” The button itself read “Self-Pity.”

The great news is that I did eventually wise up, get up off the ground where I had been rolling in – well – you know – shook myself and began to thank God for everything I could think of.

And here’s the best part – I could here His voice almost immediately – “Welcome back son, how did that work out for you.”

Ben NelsonThanks for coming by today.

See you again soon.

Ben

8

Have you noticed that prosperity has become a bad word in church? Saying “I believe that a Christian should prosper” is almost as unwelcome in some congregations a fund-raising drive.

And yet I read in the first of David’s wonderful psalms:

And in whatever he does, he prospers. - Psalms 1:3

Here it is in context

How blessed is the man who does not
walk in the counsel of the wicked,
Nor stand in the path of sinners,
Nor sit in the seat of scoffers!

But his delight is in the law of the LORD,
And in His law he meditates day and night.

He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water,
Which yields its fruit in its season
And its leaf does not wither;
And in whatever he does, he prospers.

Psalms 1:1-3

Today, I would like for you to consider what it would look like for what you are going to do today to prosper.

Many who read this will probably be writing today. What would it look like for what you write to prosper? How about this:

I pray the person or people I am writing for would read what I write.
I pray they would hear it the way I intend it,
they would not misconstrue my intentions, or misinterpret my words.
I pray it would encourage one tempted to despair
I pray it would heal a broken heart
I pray it would enlighten someone’s path
I pray it would convict a hardened heart
I pray it would turn someone from a bad choice
I pray it would stir hope

How about other work you will do today. What would prosperity look like in your endeavors today?

What would prosperity look like in a college paper?
What would prosperity look like in cooking dinner for a family of five?
What would prosperity look like in planning a computer network?
What would prosperity look like in a law office, or an operating room, or on a Naval base?
What will you put your hand to today?

Perhaps you are a Pastor, and you are preparing a sermon, or visiting someone in the hospital, or speaking to a group of friend who are mourning the loss of a loved one.

What does prosperity look like in your life?

I pray today that you would embrace this idea of prosperity, and that you would ask the Lord to prosper everything you put your hand to.

There is one other fringe benefit to this prayer. As you ask the Lord to prosper everything you put your hand to, you may find that you will have a much harder time putting your hand to things that you know He would not find pleasure in.

It is would be very difficult to spend a lot of time

walking in the counsel of the wicked,
standing in the path of sinners,
or sitting in the seat of scoffers

when your meditation is on His pleasure.

You see God prospers those endeavors that He takes pleasure in. He smiles on us when we walk in the path He has set before us. [Tweet this]

Enough said.

Don’t be afraid of prosperity.

Ben NelsonThanks for stooping by today.

Shine where you're plugged in.

Ben

Many Waters

For behold, the winter is past,
The rain is over and gone.
The flowers have already appeared in the land;
The time has arrived for pruning the vines,
And the voice of the turtledove has been heard in our land.
The fig tree has ripened its figs,
And the vines in blossom have given forth their fragrance. ~ Song of Songs 2:11-13

We have been camped here for a couple weeks looking at the season change described here in the Song. Last week we looked at some signs of life, signs that the seasons in life were changing.

In the Song winter is turning to spring. It’s interesting because if I suggest to you a spiritual winter, you might think cold and dead, and many Christians do go through a cold dead winter. However in our Song we actually see that our maiden has been snuggled in by the fireplace, so to speak, in a calm and intimate place. She has definitely been in the “comfort zone.” The Lord is calling her out of the comfort zone and into ministry now that spring has sprung.

Turtledoves - Photo Credit Wikidedia

So back to the signs of life.

Turtledoves singing:

The Turtledove is a migratory bird, and one of the last such to show up on the scene. Once this dove is cooing from the trees it is full on spring. The turtledove is traditionally a lovebird, faithful to one mate, and it's low mournful cry can be heard when it arrives from the south.

The turtledove played a part in the sacrificial system and in fact Jesus’ earthly parents offered a pair of turtledoves at His birth. Jeremiah speaks of the turtledove in much the same way as Solomon does here, as a sign of the season change.

There is however a reference to the turtledove that I love in Psalm 74, a Psalm of Asaph.

This Psalm is a cry to the Lord to return and rescue Israel. It starts out like this:

O God, why hast Thou rejected us forever?
Why does Thine anger smoke against the sheep of Thy pasture?
Remember Thy congregation, which Thou hast purchased of old,
Which Thou hast redeemed to be the tribe of Thine inheritance;
And this Mount Zion, where Thou hast dwelt. ~ Psalm 74:1-2

Sounds like winter to me. Asaph cries out to the Lord later in the Psalm:

Do not deliver the soul of Thy turtledove to the wild beast;
Do not forget the life of Thine afflicted forever.
Consider the covenant; ~ Psalm 74:19-20

This winter for national Israel is clearly not the cozy winter by the fire of the Lord hearth.

Our maiden experienced a safe warm winter by the fire, yet there are times (and she will face these times too) when it just feels like God has turned us over and left us for dead.

I love the references in this Psalm, I love how Asaph calls out to the Lord, and how he refers to God’s people.

We are:

The Sheep of His pasture
His Congregation
That He purchased
That He redeemed
His inheritance
His dwelling place
His turtledove

And finally – Consider the covenant.

Remember, Lord your great and precious promises to me.

Do you hear the singing of the turtledove today as you move through the seasons of life? Are you in a soul winter?

Remind the Lord  - call upon His name.

He made you, then purchased you, then redeemed you. If that does not demonstrate your great value, you’re missing it. You are the Lord’s turtledove, His lovebird, the apple of His eye.

I got a little rambly this morning, forgive me.

Come back next week, and we will finish these signs of life.

BenBut for now – cry out to the Lord, He is listening.

See you soon.

Ben

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