To our 9:00 am Shabbat Ark of Prayer and the Mishpacha within,
This week’s parsha is Parsha Bechukotai: Leviticus 26:3-27:34, Jeremiah 16:19-17:14,John 14:15-21; 15:10-12
My research says that the Hebrew word for Bechukotai, “decree", literally means "engraved". I like the idea of engraved. When something is engraved it is permanent and it has a bond with the thing upon which it is etched. Unfortunately, I sometimes feel like His precepts have been written on me with erasable ink.
I yelled at my wife last week over something stupid. Although I apologized later, not following G-d’s commandments works like sand in running water and grinds away at relationships. And for the bigger problems, it is like a burst dam that destroys everything in its path.
We read in this week’s Scripture that as punishment for delaying, perverting, and corrupting judgment, and neglecting Torah, sword and spoil increase, pestilence and famine come, and people eat and are not satisfied.
I find and observe that when I or anyone cross the boundaries that G-d has setup that my life, in effect, becomes full of the sword (conflict), pestilence (health) and famine (financial).
On the surface we see that when G-d uses “if” He is partly speaking about a transactional relationship. It does sort of sound like we are earning favor if we follow G-d’s rules. But I think it is really about G-d trying to help us understand about consequences. Like, “If you stand on the roof of a 10 story building you'll fall off and splat.” Or, “If you walk on the catwalk you will not fall off the 10 story building.”
So when used by G-d, I've come to understand the word "if" as a plea on the part of G-d: "If only you would follow My statutes..."
As Messianics we know His commands are indelibly written upon our hearts; like a letter in the Torah. Some Rabbi’s teach that the letters on the tablets of the Ten Commandments were not just carved partway into the stone but were bored all the way through front to back making every inch of stone both the medium and the substance of the letters. As Spirit filled Yeshua followers, we are filled front to back.
It is so frustrating that I have so much trouble being consistent. But I find it helps if, before I get out of my bedroom in the morning, I pray and meditate asking G-d for:
· Guidance for the day and to let me know when I have strayed off His path.
· Bring to mind anyone that I have harmed the previous day so I can make amends to them today.
· Bring to mind anyone that I need to forgive for any harm they have done to me so I can forgive them now.
· Strength and a changed heart to be willing to make amends and offer forgiveness to those that I want Him to rain lighting upon.
And then I’m quiet for a while and listen to see if G-d has anything to say to me.
Even with G-d’s help, I find it is hard to continuously shovel out the dust and dirt of my life from the letter that He has written on my heart so I do not distort and even conceal it. But I know that even when I am not able to see the letter, that it remains whole with all its perfection and beauty. I find that reassuring.
I hope you’ll continue to work with me in our shovel brigade through your prayers this week.
Blessings to you and yours.
I hope to see you at our Shabbat prayer session this weekend.
Your brother in Yeshua in the TEVA TEFILAH,
Posted on Fri, May 16, 2014