Testament – A Dangerous Gift of Risky Wisdom

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To all my friends, neighbors, and relatives:

This present, the precious fruit I hold out to you,
puts me at risk of being cast out, criticized, ostracized,
scoffed at, shunned, unfriended, thrown away, kicked out,
laughed at, and made fun of.
In some places, extending this to others
even brings hardship, torture, or death.
Nevertheless, I extend my gift of Good News to you,
though it may, through the enemy’s deceit,
look and sound to you like the opposite. 

My gift is honest, plainspoken, it’s candid and frank,
forthright and truthful, direct and unreserved, 
open and plain, and is completely sincere, out of my care,
compassion, concern, and love for you.

It is this:

If you are seeking to be “at one with the universe”,
you will never be that until you are “at one” with the creator of the universe.
(Yes, it was created, as were you; as was I.)

If you seek peace, seek freedom, and seek justice,
in their truest, purest forms,
you will never have those without knowing
the originator and provider of those things.

If you seek to be whole and complete, you will never truly be
until you know The Only One who was perfectly whole
and complete in Himself – Jesus – God With Us;
who sacrificed His all so that you could have all of the above
through Him and in Him alone.

And if you seek one person to love, and to love you in return, for all your life,
seek one who knows the creator of love – The One who loves you both
with eternal certainty. 

This is eternal wisdom, of which I once had none,
but of which He has given like He gives the gift of faith.
I am a firsthand witness. It happened to myself.
I have grasped only the corner of His robe.
I have but sipped from His living spring.
(to lend a particle of the poetic)
Only a corner and a small sip have already brought forth refreshing fruit
which I willingly pass out despite personal cost. Now.
For I may be out of time here.
One day, I will certainly be out of time, if you get my drift.  .  .

Once, I had none of those gifts,
Now, I’m getting.
Once, I couldn’t have,
Now, I can.
Once, I only was,
Now, I AM.

My Christ-following friends already know these truths,
as they know the Author of truth,
the Giver of the only gifts which have lasting value.
They already have, or are in the process of, accepting all the above desirable gifts.
The Good News is that there is much, much, more
to knowing Father God, Jesus, and His Holy Spirit!
Knowing them and making them Lord-Of-My-Life
is Everything.

Choose any of those friends, neighbors, or relatives to confide in

or ask questions of, if you want these things and much, much, more.
Any of them can tell you who to see, where to go, and what to do
to get the absolute most out of this current life and have it all extended everlastingly!

My heart is “on my sleeve”,
It’s plain for all to see,
Who do you want to be, or not to be?
This, sincerely, lovingly, from Me.

7-12-14  *From Estes Park*
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One Man’s Story Illustrating The Meaning Of Ressurection Sunday – Easter – “I Am Not My Own”

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It has been almost ten years since the guy in this story believed God for the first time.  Seven years after “his” rescue, “he” was commissioned to write about that very personal Life-event. This is the first story that the Holy Spirit of Jesus poured into “him” and then helped that hatching writer set into words. Although it is full of metaphor and illustration, which some might find challenging, even troubling, it is based upon, and inspired by “his” own personal rebirth, transformation, and resulting personal relationship with “his” Savior:

I Am Not My Own

 

“Waiting to die” pretty much summed it up. Nothing before me. I was lost without a compass or map. No sun to show direction. Just utterly lost. No purpose. No meaning. I must have taken a wrong turn sometime, somewhere in the past, somewhere back on the journey up this metaphoric trail called “life”. I had relied completely upon myself, needing no-one else. I knew something had been missing, but I had ignored that thought. Looking after my own wants and desires, I took little accounting of others’ well-being. I admit life had been mostly about me, yet there was an emptiness, and that I had ignored as well. But surely it isn’t my fault that I found myself in a bad place! Where was the love? Where was this God my mother and grandfather talked about? I had shaken my fist at the sky in anger.
“You don’t exist and I hate you.”
I had always been right. I just didn’t make mistakes. Yet there must be something more. No, that’s silly, this is all there is! Me, Myself and I. Live for today, for you only get one chance at life. “I am my own man. I‘ll do it my way!” I shouted my arrogant mantra. “Take pleasure while you can before it’s too late.”

Darker and colder. Hope is fading…….  Wait. The “trail” splits up ahead.  I have a choice of directions in which to take my life, but I can’t tell which way would be best.  For the first time, I can’t tell which way to go.  My superior intellect should be able to divine the right way. Intuition. Deduction. Maybe I can get back in the game. Yes, the Universe will tell me the way. I’ll meditate. “Ohhhmmmm.” I’ll close my eyes. Breathe deep – let it out. “Ohhhmmmmm.”  “Find the right  way, before it’s too late…….. too late………………. too late…………………………..”

Suddenly I find myself on a real trail;  a rocky, dusty, steep, very real mountain trail.

The sky is dreary and the air is heavy with the feeling of an impending storm. I’m not alone on my ascent up the mountain. There is a man struggling to carry or drag something on the trail above me. As I draw closer to him I notice that he is struggling with a heavy wooden cross. His robe is soiled and dusty, and heavily bloodstained. His straining face is shining with sweat and his features are wracked with excruciating pain. In surprise turning to shock, I notice that a wreath of long, cruelly sharp thorns has been pressed into the skin of his scalp and forehead. Rivulets of blood are slowly trickling into his eyes and down his bruised, battered cheeks. One eye is nearly swollen shut. He doesn’t seem to know I’m here.

I stop as he loses his footing and falls to one knee in the rocks. Breathing hard – nearly panting, he manages to rise and lift the cross to his shoulder but it is apparent that his strength is failing. It seems urgent that he reach the summit with that cross. In an unusual moment of pity, I wonder if there is anything I can do to help him. I’m not without compassion, am I? But no, he is probably some sort of criminal who doesn’t deserve my help and, anyway, I wouldn’t want to get into trouble. The same men who have hurt him could very well do the same to me. Yet torture of this kind is sort of disturbing no matter who he is or what he has done.

He is nearing the top of the dry, barren mountain. I follow him at a safe distance, with a sort of morbid curiosity, and watch as he shuffles painfully across a flat area until he stops, pauses, then half shrugs and half throws the cross off his shoulder onto the hard ground. He drops with painful exhaustion onto his hands and knees over the heavy wooden cross. His fingers come away covered with his lifeblood when he touches his punctured forehead.  He places his shaking hand upon the crossbar and turns his face toward me, then he stares right into my eyes and one corner of his mouth lifts in just a hint of a smile. Blood is dripping from his wounded head onto the cross. I am so startled that I look away in confusion and embarrassment. I do not know him, yet this pitiful man acts like he knows me. Frightened, and not knowing why, I turn away and quickly walk down and around a small hill until I find a cave-like formation in the rocks where I can be out of the blast of the wind and hopefully sheltered from the gathering storm.

I sit with my knees bent and my arms around them. Thinking. Wondering. Who was that man?  What happened to him? What is he doing? Why?  The wind, which had been raging, suddenly becomes completely still. The light begins to fade. In a short time it is completely dark and I am desperately afraid, for I know it is only midday. If I should move, I risk falling into a hole or off a cliff.

“Helllp! Someone, please help me!”  Silence…..      Impatient, I take a few tentative steps, carefully feeling for safe places to put my feet. I take a few more steps but a ledge of rock shifts under me and I find that I’m sliding down a slope. I manage to grasp the edge of a large, flat rock as I slide past it. The edges of the rock are sharp, cutting my palms as I try to hang on. Now I am hanging in the air by the tips of my fingers.
“Hellllllp!” I cried again. “For the love of god, someone, anyone. I’m falling. Save me. Oh my god, save me.”
A small light appears below my feet. A glow like a small candle. Greenish yellow. I look down and see that my feet are just above a solid, flat rock so I drop onto it. Now what?
“You’re welcome” someone says. “Now come, there is something you should see. Just be quiet and follow me.”
“Who’s there?  Who are you?” No reply. The tiny light moves across the rock such that it lights a path for my footsteps. I can tell that we are circling upward and to the right. “Thanks for the help. I thought I would die!”
“Yes, you would have. Shhhhh”
I follow and reach a flat place. The light moves away from the ground and stops near a pair of feet. The feet are nailed to a post with a huge iron spike! Oh, my lord, I need to get away from here! The light winks out. But, I can’t get away if I can’t see. Maybe I’m hallucinating. Let me awaken from this nightmare! The light appears higher up. I see a hand nailed to a crossbeam. I can’t look. Someone has nailed this guy to the cross he was carrying!
I’m horrified. This is too much. “Let me go! Get me out of here!”
“Wait”
Now the glow moves across the beam until it reaches a vertical post and I see a sign with words written on it in a foreign language. Beneath the sign I see a wreath made of thorns upon a head which is hanging down. Then I’m shown the man’s other hand – also pierced with a nail. So much blood. I feel ill and kneel on the cold stone. Obviously it is the same man I followed up the path.
“Who is this poor man?”
“Soon you will know,” the voice said softly.
“What has he done to deserve this?” I whispered.
“Nothing. He has done only good. What you see is innocent blood. Now we must move away so that he can finish what he came to do – what has to be done that only he can do.” I follow the light behind a large boulder then stand and wait.
The light is gone again. It is still dark as midnight. No stars or moon or sun.
“ Don’t leave me. You still there? ”
“ I Am.”
“What is that stench?”
“ Be still, it’s coming. They are all coming.”
The smell of dead things hits me. Sulfur. Every foul smell I have ever smelled hits me. I see something coming from beyond where the crucified man is. It is black. More black than the dark. So black that it stands out against the darkness. It is floating like a hairy, spiny blanket and reminds me of a sting ray the way it moves through the air. Terrifying sounds begin to blare from the thing. A cacophony of screams, wails, and growls. The sounds of terror and of war and of hate. It opens its yawning maw revealing row upon row of sharp yellow teeth. Anything that got near that vicious mouth would be snatched in and cut to bits.
“What in the world is that?” I asked, terrified. Whatever it is, I think it sees me. It is between me and the cross and it is looking to devour me like prey. I am paralyzed with fear. Then the man on the cross intervenes. He says something I can’t understand as though speaking directly to the predator. I hold my breath. It turns toward him. What a relief!
“ It is something you have never understood. Close your eyes so that I can make you see a little better.” With that the light appears like a small oil lamp, touches me on the forehead and then over my heart, and disappears. Something inside me says “That is the first sin.” Now the hideous thing is settling onto the cross for I can see its outline wrapping around the outline of the cross and the figure of the man. I hear the sounds of a violent, gasping struggle. Sin seems to be trying to suffocate him and crush him with its considerable weight. It seems to burn him like strong acid, yet he appears to be neutralizing and absorbing it.
I breathe a sigh of relief until I see more sins coming from all directions, heading straight for him like wasps with stingers bared. They attack him like the first, only by the hundreds, then millions, then billions. The expanse of the dark sky is filled with them. Piling onto him. The man is in agony beyond my understanding. This is no ordinary man.
“How can he endure this nightmare? Isn’t it enough that he has been tortured, and hangs there bleeding to death? Now he has to be attacked by these monstrosities?” As if in reply all I can hear is the muffled sound of weeping. I can’t help but weep myself and sink to my knees under the constant streams of unspeakable things passing overhead. I curl up and cover my ears. All the while the inner voice is comforting me. Giving me small insights. Keeping me from going crazy with terror. “How long have I been here?”
“Nearly three hours.”
“This is horrible, why do I have to watch this? Worse yet, why is it happening to this nice man if, as you say, he is innocent? What in god’s name is going on?”

“This mysterious, wondrous man is receiving all the blasphemy, all the malicious thoughts and deeds, all the selfish ideas and cruel acts that ever happened and that will ever happen. He is absorbing them somehow. To His very marrow. I am not even certain exactly how He is doing it. It is supernatural, for He is beyond nature now. I can feel how He recognizes each individual sin-beast and recalls the depth of His own love for the bearer of each monster. And there’s even more to it than that. He is becoming sin, transforming into it because of its viciously contaminating nature. And yes, you spoke well, He is doing it all in God’s name. I know that a multitude of angels could be called to save Him, but He knows He must do this and do it alone – completely and terribly alone. This is the only way – to trade places with you – to endure what you could never endure. He who has been perfect is ready to give up everything He holds very dear – even His relationship with His Father and His eternal life in Heaven and He is doing it all for you. He is becoming what he despises most to save you. You did ask to be saved, remember? This poor guy, as you call Him, is the Way, the Truth, and the Life! No one can come to the Father except through Him because of what He is doing right now! You are seeing Lord Jesus, the one and only Son of God, in His finest hour. Giving His utmost. Giving His all for His brothers and sisters. He is working toward His own destruction. Yes, you are right. It is almost too much for even me to bear.”
I still had my doubts.
“ Are you telling me that this Jesus, God, Heaven stuff is real?”
“ What do you hear inside?”
I sat in stunned silence and listened…. In a very small voice I heard myself say “Yes, I’ve been so wrong……..”

“Stand up, you should see this”
I stood. The last of the black abominations was being taken in. Save one. It was massive. Uglier and nastier, more foul-smelling and noisier than any of the others. I shuddered. “What in the world is that?” There was a long pause……..

“Don’t you know?……………. That one is yours.”
Hanging my head and through my sobs I confessed. “Yes, it is so full of unforgiveness, and selfishness, and every other bad thing. Yes mine is the worst. I‘m so sorry.” Just the weight of my terrible sin alone should have crushed Him, yet He bore them all. I don’t understand.”
“He accepted your punishment. Now you are almost free. Your ‘lifesaving’ is a gift from Us, but there is just one more thing you must do. I’ll see you soon, there’s something I must do too.  Don’t worry, it’s a good thing.”
“Us?  Who?…. Wait !…. What do I do now?!!
“You have been chosen, but He doesn’t ever force.  You can accept His choosing or reject it.  So choose.  Choose wisely, for as you have seen, Life and death have been laid before you. Of course Life is preferred.  Who, or what, will be your Lord?  We have great hopes for you, but the choice is yours and there can be no compromise. Choose.”  Then the Light-Being was gone.

I stand here in shock as the sky’s light begins to return. Am I witnessing my first dawn? I turn toward Jesus. The cross seems worn and bent. He seems almost……..

But even now He is dying, and with His last breath I hear Him declare loudly, not in defeat, but in triumph:

“IT IS FINISHED!”

All creation seems to be groaning and weeping. Nooooooo! How can this be! I can’t lose Him now! All Heaven and Earth is wailing in protest, the thunder is deafening and an earthquake is throwing me into the air. My landing is sure to hurt, but I’m not afraid, for suddenly belief overtakes me.  My fear is gone.  I believe that I will be delivered to safety and the name of my Savior is Jesus Christ, Messiah, Son of God. Immanuel. God With Me. I believe, and everything has changed! But, oh, how I wish He weren’t gone. I so would have liked to talk with Him…… Noooooooooooooo!!!

I can’t watch as they take His body away. I simply stay in a fetal position behind my boulder and wonder in awe – and in deep sadness. For another day, maybe two, I just wait and think.  I think of how stupid I was to set myself up as my own god, as judge of who I thought should be forgiven or not forgiven; who should be condemned or glorified.

Why do I feel light and new?  I don’t deserve to.  My burden is gone but so is He. I should be sad and I am, but somehow this air is clean and fresh. Are those birds that I hear? Why do I hear someone singing?

Toward dusk, I stand and walk to the cross. The cuts on my palms are open and bleeding again and they hurt. Standing at the foot of this horrible post, I feel small. I can hardly bear to look at it, yet something catches my eye. There is something written there behind where His wonderful, pure heart once beat. He must have done it when He collapsed atop the cross and smiled at me. There are words in a foreign language with my name under them. Another is there beside mine. I see crimson hand prints on both sides of the cross where his hands gripped it. I don’t know how it could be that the blood is still fresh, but it is. Impulsively I stand on my tiptoes, stretch, reach upward and place my hands over his hand prints. Mercy, Lord!  Instantly a circuit is completed! My hands are held firm! His blood enters my cuts and there is no more pain. Not in my hands nor my heart. Connected by blood, I feel His presence! He is my Savior. My Lord Jesus! I am His and He is mine! A bright, white light wraps itself around my feet and travels up my legs. Engulfing. Permeating. It reaches my chest, then the top of my head. I feel clean and new and whole. The feeling of a warm blanket descends upon my head and, as it slowly falls, wraps me in comfort from head to toes. My whole body – my whole being – tingles with joy as though sparkling light is becoming a sensation inside me. I lift my palms from the cross and, like a child, raise them to the sky. I have chosen Life. He is alive in me and I live in Him.  At last I know who and whose I am, and why. “Thank you Father, Thank You, Thank You; Thank You, Jesus!” I just sit at the foot of the cross and weep out joy for a long time…………..

I awake at dawn smiling , whispers of sunshine warming my face. I’ve slept soundly all night and remember dreaming that I enjoyed a banquet in a palace full of beautiful people. After an amazing meal, there was a party. Everyone there smiled at me. All through the night we had such fun singing and dancing……

Whispers.  Laughter.  Exuberance!  My eyes opening.  The little Light-Being was back, bouncing all over the ground and over me. Excitedly it announced, “Joyous News!  Happy, Happy Morning!  He is alive, indeed it is true! The stone was not as heavy as it looked, nor the tomb secure from Light in its darkness! He awoke and walked alive from His grave!  Death is undone! His work is indeed finished today! All that He gave up has been restored to Him.  Everything!  Even now He walks among His people. He even knows of your choice!  He wants to talk with you! Come quickly!”
I was already running down the trail as all my inner-being proclaimed, “‘My Savior Lives!’  Wait, who are you?  Slow down!”
And in the distance ahead, behind me, and in my inner, renewed soul, I heard, “I AM the Wind at your back!”

It seems a season later.  A day perhaps? I am a different person now – a new person with a new heart. It’s simple, yet hard to explain. My fears and doubts are gone. Selfishness is replaced by love. I know meaning, yes, and purpose. And there is this joy – this amazing joy! I look at my cupped hands. They are completely healed, and in them the little bubble of Light wiggles and pulsates. I ask it, “I wonder what those words meant. The ones on the cross, in the blood that doesn’t ever seem to dry. What would He write to me in His own blood?”

“Don’t you know? Can’t you guess? My child , it’s in Aramaic. He is saying

“I LOVE YOU”

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Oh my dear Lord! Now my Father and Creator and I can talk and have fellowship. He tells me I will always be His and that He will always be mine! He said I could keep the little Light-Being which led me to Him and which helped me to see, even when times were darkest.  In fact it has expanded to fill my inner- man, and resides in me today, and to this day, He and my Lord Jesus still love to show me my page in His Book of Life.
It says: “(Len, grandson of David) — Acquired, and adopted, December 2, 2004 AD at 9:33 am central time. On that day, Father and I danced and sang with him, and all Heaven and the angels rejoiced until half-past eternity!”
(He has a great sense of humor!)

Acquired! Wow!

And that’s how I learned that I am not my own, but that I was acquired – purchased by His blood and paid for by Him dying in my place and carrying my sin away! Acquired and purchased not as a mere possession, but redeemed and adopted as a treasured son, brother, and heir.

Not my own! Entirely His!

Oh, and about that name that I saw beside mine on the cross, written in His blood. My dear friend, haven’t you guessed?  Do you not know?

It is yours!!

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Copyright © 11-22-2010  by Len, Gloryteller.  All rights reserved.

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A Re-run To Fill The Seeming Void – – – HIS PRAYER EXPANDED

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I’ve not been forthcoming with new material, but I’ve been writing right along.
While I finish that work, here’s a re-run to mark time.
I assure you that new material is forthcoming,
assuming that I’m still working here in the physical “plain”
(or plane, if you’re literal and a discerning speller, that was an ordinary pun, haha)


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My Father

Oh, my Father-God and my Lord, Who walks the vast halls of Heaven,
where You live, and breathe, and reign sovereign
over everything finite and eternal.
From where You speak.
From where You write Your Word.
From where You see all, know all, and do all.
From where You give Your unfathomable grace,
your mercy, and forgiveness.
From where You open Your hands and pour out goodness,
and from where You sent Your Love Incarnate, Immanuel.

Your name is Holy.
Let me kneel humbly, respectfully,
in reverence to Your glorious name.

May Your kingdom, Your realm, be established,
may Your kingship be proclaimed,
may everything You desire to happen
be done here on Earth, just as it is in Heaven.

I ask that You continue to provide all I need
in the form of wholesome food and water to nourish my body,
as well as Your Living Bread, and Your Living Water,
and understanding of Your Word, with personal revelation,
to nourish my soul.

I ask that You help me remember how You paid my debts
on the horrible cross of torture.
How You took my sin upon Yourself, Jesus.
How You gave Yourself in propitiating atonement, and in conciliation,
and appeasement, for my trespasses against You, Father-God.
Help me Lord to continue to learn to forgive others their debts against me,
their trespasses, wrongs, crimes, and sins against me,
just as You have so mercifully and graciously forgiven mine through Christ.

I ask You, Lord, to lead me away from the temptations of this world.
Help me keep your Word, Your principles, in obedience.
Lead me through the minefields, the snares, and the pitfalls,
for they are many, and my enemy shows me only the bait,
but hides the trap well.
Protect and deliver me from that devil, from that evil one, in Jesus name!

And finally, Almighty Father, I want to proclaim Your Kingdom.
It is the Kingdom of kingdoms, and You are the King of kings!

I proclaim that Your power is absolute.
It is the power that created Beautiful Creation in its entire completeness.
It is the power to create human beings in Your image;
human minds, souls, and hearts.
It is the awe-inspiring, miraculous power to change those hearts,
and save those souls.

And, I proclaim Your Glory, Lord.
How can I explain Your Glory?
It is too beautiful, too splendidly colorful, too exquisitely bright!
How can I illuminate it?
It blinds my eyes, baffles my mind, closes my mouth.
It is love unleashed, fervent, and intense.
It is Your inexplicable mercy, and grace, and kindness, and generosity.
It is as inexplicable as You, my God.
You’re glorious in Your Glory.
You ARE the Most High Lord,
Holiness Itself,
Ancient of Days,
The Great I AM.

Yes, Yours is the Kingdom, the Power, and the Glory,
for all time, and through unfathomable eternity.
You are my ABBA, my Heavenly Father-God
to Whom I pray this prayer, as You have instructed.
I ask these things and proclaim these things
in the love of Jesus’ most holy name.
Amen, and Amen.


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Meet Xian

Meet Xian
AKA, Chi – My Kind Of Guy

He has shown up twice in my latest posts.
Who is he?
Reader, meet Xian.

This is his story:

When I first started reading Christian-oriented material, “Our Daily Bread”, for example, I used symbols to mark and highlight passages that were important and inspiring.  I used the five-pointed star: It is easy to draw without lifting the pen, but it has pagan connotations, so I went to the six-pointed star:

Two triangles, voila – a Star of David.  But that takes a little too much time to draw, so I went to the asterisk:Three quick, simple lines that intersect.  My ODB, and books, and Bible are full of them.  However, for some reason, (who can explain ME) I recently began to take the X out of the aster, and just use that.  I may well have been led to do it:So there it is. X .

You knew I would get around to this, didn’t you…..I began to think about how the X in Xmas stands for Christ.  I found that the X is actually Chi, the first letter in the Greek word, Χριστος.  I hope I got that right, because, hey, it’s Greek!  Anyway, that Greek word means Christos – the Anointed One – which is a translation of the Hebrew “Messiah”.    The X in Xmas is derived from the Chi (pronounced “Ki” which rhymes with “my”, or “guy”) in this word: Χριστος.  X came to denote “Christ” sometime in the sixteenth century.  Xmas is often misinterpreted as a modern secularization of “Christmas”, thinking that it is an attempt to remove religion from the holiday.  If it is, it has backfired!   “Xian” has been -used as an abbreviation for “Christian”, as well.  These are merely abbreviations, not to be used in formal writing, and words are symbols, so maybe it is much ado about nothing, but the things words stand for, especially when they stand for people, and God, and Godly concepts, are important.  But I diverge.

One morning, I looked at the X and saw a figure with hands raised.  I don’t know what made me put a head on it, but that’s what I did.  A trinity of lines.

It came to life!  Xian (Christian) was born!  (You can surely tell that art comes naturally for me).
Xian has since become just slightly more than a symbol to me, more than a stick man.  He is naturally worshipful.  You can see how he surrenders his all to the Almighty.  His hands are raised in surrender and praise.  He somehow expresses “giving glory to God in the highest”.  Sometimes I call him “Chi – my kind of guy”.   Three simple lines with a lot of heart.

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An Expanded Prayer To My Father In Heaven

 

My Father

 

Oh, my Father-God and my Lord, Who walks the vast halls of Heaven,
Where You live, and breathe, and reign sovereign
Over everything finite and eternal.
From where You speak,
From where You write Your Word,
From where You see all, know all, and do all,
From where You give Your unfathomable grace,
Your mercy, and forgiveness,
From where You open Your hands and pour out goodness,
And from where You sent Your Love Incarnate, Immanuel.

Your name is Holy.
Let me kneel humbly, respectfully,
In reverence to Your glorious name.

May Your kingdom, Your realm, be established,
May Your kingship be proclaimed,
May everything You desire to happen
Be done here on Earth, just as it is in Heaven.

I ask that You continue to provide all I need
In the form of wholesome food and water to nourish my body,
As well as The Living Bread, and The Living Water,
And understanding of Your Word, with personal revelation,
To nourish my soul.

I ask that You help me remember how You paid my debts
On the horrible cross of torture.
How You took my sin upon Yourself, Jesus,
How You gave Yourself in propitiating atonement, and in conciliation,
And appeasement, for my trespasses against You, Father-God.
Help me Lord to continue to learn to forgive others their debts against me,
Their trespasses, wrongs, crimes, and sins against me,
Just as You have so mercifully and graciously forgiven mine through Christ.

I ask You, Lord, to lead me away from the temptations of this world.
Help me keep your Word, Your principles, in obedience.
Lead me through the minefields, the snares, and the pitfalls,
For they are many, and my enemy shows me only the bait,
But hides the trap well.
Protect and deliver me from that devil, from that evil one, in Jesus name!

And finally, Almighty Father, I want to proclaim Your Kingdom.
It is the Kingdom of kingdoms, and You are the King of kings!

I proclaim that Your power is absolute.  It is the power that created
Beautiful Creation in its entire completeness.
It is the power to create human beings in Your image,
Human minds, souls, and hearts.
It is the awe-inspiring, miraculous power to change those hearts,
And save those souls.

And, I proclaim Your Glory, Lord.
How can I explain Your Glory?
It is too beautiful, too splendidly colorful, too exquisitely bright!
It blinds my eyes, baffles my mind, closes my mouth.
It is love unleashed, fervent, and intense.
It is Your inexplicable mercy, and grace, and kindness, and generosity.
It is as inexplicable as You, my God.
You’re glorious in Your Glory.
You ARE the Most High Lord,  Holiness Itself, Ancient of Days, The Great I AM.

Yes, Yours is the Kingdom, the Power, and the Glory,
For all time, and through unfathomable eternity.
You are my ABBA, my Heavenly Father-God to Whom I pray this prayer.
In Jesus’ most holy name.
Amen, and Amen.

 

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Doxology

Doxology

 

 

The word “doxology” comes from the Greek words “glory” and “saying”.  That sounds a lot like “glorytelling” to me, so lets explore a little deeper.

A doxology is a short prayer, verse, or hymn expressing praise to God.  Often poetic, I see it as a triumphant, glorious conclusion to a session of praise and worship of  The Triune God by a congregated “body of believers”.  Let us review a few of the doxologies available to us to glorify the Father, the Son, and The Holy Spirit:

This one is a familiar doxology, often added at the end of the Lord’s Prayer:
For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever, Amen.”
This verse seems to be an addition to the ancient text of Matthew 6:13.  I rather like it there.  It seems right to say this out loud.  It can also be sung.

In the Epistle of Jude, the last two verses are considered to be a doxology:
Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.

This Roman Catholic doxology is sung by the presiding priest after the eucharistic prayer:
Through him, and with him, and in him, O God, almighty Father, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor is yours, forever and ever. Amen.

Here is one I remember singing in the Methodist Church of my youth.  It is from an unknown author, and is known as “The Gloria Patri” and “The Lesser Doxology”:
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost;

As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
World without end. Amen, Amen.

Certain Canadian Churches, as well as The United Church of Christ, sing  this doxology:
Praise God from whom all blessings flow;
Praise God, all creatures here below;
Praise God for all that love has done;
Creator, Christ, and Spirit, One.

Then there is this one, sometimes called “The Greater  Doxology”.  It is an expansion of Luke 2:14 :
Gloria in Excelsis Deo (Glory to God in the highest)

Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace to men of good will.
We praise You,
we bless You,
We adore You,
We glorify You,
We give thanks to You
For your great glory,
Lord God, Heavenly King,
God the Almighty Father.
Lord Only-begotten Son, Jesus Christ,
Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father,
You Who take away the sins of the world,
have mercy on us.
You Who take away the sins of the world,
hear our prayer.
You Who sit at the right hand of the Father,
have mercy on us.
For You alone are holy,
You alone are the Lord,
You alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ,
With the Holy Spirit
in the glory of God the Father. Amen.

This next is an old standard simply called “The Doxology”.  I happily sang this in my youth as well.  I’m sure you will recognize it.  It goes like this:
Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him, all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heavenly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
These lyrics were written by Thomas Ken in 1674  as the final verse of his hymn “Awake, My Soul, and with the Sun”.  The music for “Doxology”, which is sung in many churches today, is attributed to Louis Bourgeois and his “Old 100th Genevan Psalter”, from 1551.  Here are the complete lyrics of the beautiful “Awake, My Soul,….” :

Awake, my soul, and with the sun
Thy daily stage of duty run;
Shake off dull sloth, and joyful rise,
To pay thy morning sacrifice.

Thy precious time misspent, redeem,
Each present day thy last esteem,
Improve thy talent with due care;
For the great day thyself prepare.

By influence of the Light divine
Let thy own light to others shine.
Reflect all Heaven’s propitious ways
In ardent love, and cheerful praise.

In conversation be sincere;
Keep conscience as the noontide clear;
Think how all seeing God thy ways
And all thy secret thoughts surveys.

Wake, and lift up thyself, my heart,
And with the angels bear thy part,
Who all night long unwearied sing
High praise to the eternal King.

All praise to Thee, who safe has kept
And hast refreshed me while I slept
Grant, Lord, when I from death shall wake
I may of endless light partake.

Heav’n is, dear Lord, where’er Thou art,
O never then from me depart;
For to my soul ’tis hell to be
But for one moment void of Thee.

Lord, I my vows to Thee renew;
Disperse my sins as morning dew.
Guard my first springs of thought and will,
And with Thyself my spirit fill.

Direct, control, suggest, this day,
All I design, or do, or say,
That all my powers, with all their might,
In Thy sole glory may unite.

I would not wake nor rise again
And Heaven itself I would disdain,
Wert Thou not there to be enjoyed,
And I in hymns to be employed.

Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him, all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heavenly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

There are many doxologies in the Bible, and they are all a blessing to both worshiper and God.  I urge you to find and use them.

In conclusion, I would like to offer my own version of “Doxology” in order to replace the word “ghost” (not that there’s anything wrong with it):

Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him, all creatures here below;
Praise God, holy Three In One;
Praise loving Father, Spirit, Son.
Amen, Amen.
LS<

What an honor to proclaim His glory,
In doxologies spoken and sung.
For it’s a pleasure to repeat the story,
Of The Father, The Spirit, and Son.

LS<

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Marriages vs. Weddings

Despite my seeming cynicism about the ‘royal wedding’ I have nothing against marriages. (Except maybe the casual kind, the selfish, loveless, or meaningless/vain kinds)  In fact, I’m rooting for Kate and William to be in love and married together forever, and to be the shining example of everything God intended marriage to be. I’m rooting for all traditional (no, I’ve no time for that subject) marriages everywhere to be all that God meant them and wants them to be.  I pray that couples will keep Christ the center of their marriages and their lives. I pray that they make their vows in all sincerity and call upon the Holy Spirit to help keep them. The wedding, however has little to do with any of the above except to provide special circumstances in which to make sacred promises to God and to one another.  The obsession with all the worldly trappings surrounding the wedding have little to do with the success of the resulting marriage. If as much thought, time, planning, dreaming, and praying were applied to the actual relationship, to loving the other person involved, to the realities of a great marriage, then the wedding would become secondary instead of the other way around.  I’m just saying……..

In the end, when Christ comes to “marry” His beloved bride, His Church, the Royal Wedding will be wonderful, but the marriage will be forever spectacular. I’m out of time. Dear readers please supply the appropriate verses – you’re so good at it!

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Who and Whose Am I?

I am a new creature in Christ, radically saved, reborn, and transformed through His mercy and grace.  I had wandered lost in the wilderness of unbelief for exactly 40 years, (how very Biblical in itself) after which, He revealed His amazing, powerful, presence to me.  His love was palpably manifest as He proved Himself miraculously in ways tailor-made to turn my doubt and stubborn disbelief.  I was found and rescued!  Now I am His, and as such, I want to use what He has given me.  I alone can do the work in the exact, unique way that he has planned and purposed.  I just want to fulfill my role as one of the small, yet vital, members of His staff of servants.

 My life now has meaning and purpose.  The Holy Spirit speaks constantly into my heart the glory of the Great Commandment, and of  the Great Commission, and out of those comes a longing to tell of His great power and  glory, His mercy and grace.  I have never before had the desire to write stories, nor the talent for it, yet He has unfathomably enabled me to do that to further His great kingdom. 

My hope is that many people visit here to see what I have to say, but if only one beloved soul could be led to Christ, one person’s faith strengthened, or one heart encouraged,  my time and effort will be well worthwhile.  I will put my words out there and let the Holy Spirit use them as fits God’s plan.  I have stories to tell and His Glory to tell.  I am ready and willing and by the grace of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, here I go!

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About The Music Links Below

I don't own, and have no claim on, these music videos. The following are simply links inside my website pointing back to the original locations of the videos. The names of the creators of these videos are cited wherever possible, and only "embedding-enabled" selections are used.

The Basic Christian Library

"Mere Christianity" by C.S. Lewis. This is fundamentally what Christianity is all about.

"The Case for Christ" by Lee Strobel. Another converted atheist presents His compelling case for believing in Jesus.

"Left To Tell" by Imaculee Ilibagiza. This profound work is her own extraordinary story of endurance, discovery of the Holy Spirit, grace, healing, and an astonishingly compelling account of the necessity for forgiveness.

Compelling Christian Fiction Reads

"The Circle" 4-book series by Ted Dekker.
A man is the bridge between two very different worlds. Sound familiar? Can he save both? This T.D. work is brilliant in my book.

"This Present Darkness" and "Piercing the Darkness" by Frank E. Peretti. Tales of spiritual warfare from a unique perspective. Stirred a small controversy, but sold millions. What are we Christians afraid of? Hey, it's fiction!

Copyright Licensing

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My Signature Story

"I AM NOT MY OWN" is the piece that inspired the building of this site. It is the story that this site, as well as my life, is centered around. This letter to you is the one i would most like for you to read out of all the ones you will find here, because it describes how profoundly the works of Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit can change one human life.

For Your Reading Enjoyment, This Is Like A Park, Use It, Enjoy It, and Leave Everything Where You Found It.

The content here's not to be used,

But to only be read and perused.

If you copy it off,

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And your fortune is mine - you got sued!

Gloryteller :-)

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