Torah Portion: Beha’alotcha

In Messianic Judaism, Hebrew roots congregations, as well as various forms of Judaism, there is a weekly Bible reading plan that the whole world (of those groups) studies in unity. This week’s Torah portion is called “Beha’alotcha”, which means in Hebrew “Lift Up”. Can you find a theme or connection between these various passages?

TorahPortion.Behaalotcha.EBR

 

 

 

 

Torah Portion: Bamidbar

This week’s Torah portion is called “Bamidbar”, which means in Hebrew, “In The Wilderness”. Notice the theme of being in the wilderness in the following passages. How does this apply to you today? How could it apply in the future?

Torah Portion. Bamidbar.EBR

Dormancy

happysabbathTo learn more about the Sabbath, a day of rest given by God, study these passages.Genesis 1:5,13-14 ; Genesis 2:1-3; Exodus 20:8-11; Exodus 31:12-17; Isaiah 58:13-14; Isaiah 66:22-23; Nehemiah 13:19; Ezekiel 44:23-24; Mark 2:27-27 (a gift for man from the Lord); Luke 4:16; Acts 17:2; Acts 18:4; Hebrews 4

 

He Is Risen

Spring Printable - Benj and Lauren

Happy Firstfruits (the Biblical name for Easter)! He is risen indeed! In case you are curious, check out the Feasts of the LORD (for all who believe in Him) see Leviticus 23.

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Started My Third Book Today!

typewriter_rose_article As the rose gardening season winds down for winter, today I sat down to write the book that has brewing within my heart for the past year or so. My third and final rose devotional book will be called Ever-Blooming and Ever-Rejoicing: Through Seasons of Change. Just as in all my books, this one will offer rose gardening tips, particularly of how to care for roses in each season, along with a spiritual parallel.

Here is the first draft of its introduction:

In my 40 years of life, especially as a follower of Jesus Christ, I’ve discovered while growing up in God’s garden, there will inevitably be seasons of change. The question is will I remain ever-blooming and ever-rejoicing through it all? How easy to praise my Creator and Master Gardener through Seasons of Hope and Seasons of Celebration, but can I praise Him through the uncomfortable and exhausting Season of Perseverance or through a Season of Patient Rest? It’s through such seasons that seeds of His Spirit evolve into fruit to be harvested, shared, and enjoyed.

Furthermore, I’ve found when I am content in all areas and all circumstances, it is then I am free to transition into the next season He has for me. What season do you find yourself in today? More importantly, are you able to be “ever-blooming” and “ever-rejoicing” through it all?

 

Putting Down Roots

While eating lunch in a small diner today, I couldn’t help but over hear our gregarioustree roots waitress invite another patron to try the peach pie, which eventually led her to share how frustrated she was that her own peach and apple trees perished over the winter upon encountering the first hard freeze. As I continued to inhale my much deserved lunch, trying to mind my business, my ears inevitably perked up. Meanwhile, my mind listed the probable reasons her fruit trees failed her. One such reason being, fruit trees, like roses, need their root systems well established prior to when the first freeze strikes or they will likely die. It is probable the waitress planted her trees too late in the season while not also preparing them for the whims of winter. Upon the end of her gardening chatter, she confessed to giving up on fostering fruit trees and planted Crape Myrtle shrubs instead. Oh, and by the way, the customer never did get the peach pie. Ha!

tree-with-foliage-with-the-shape-of-a-heart-and-roots-as-text-love-on-white-background_gg67012197Much later in the evening, I contemplated the spiritual importance of being rooted. It doesn’t really matter what city or what church we lay our roots in, because if we have God’s Holy Spirit, we can go anywhere and thrive. What matters is being rooted in His love. Too often, we are rooted in false identities, wanting the approval and acceptance of other’s love. Then, when others assault us with their first hard freeze or whipping words of winter, we shrivel up and die. We fail to know our own worth because unknowingly our roots sought strength and nourishment in another’s acceptance instead of God’s. Conversely, when we know our true identities rooted in Christ’s love and approval, we will be firmly planted able to flow with a heart of thankfulness while operating in true love despite the changing seasons and hardened hearts we may encounter  (see Romans 10:10; Ephesians 3:16-19; Colossians 2:6-7).

“By believing you receive God’s approval, and by declaring your faith you are saved.” Romans 10:10 (God’s Word Translation)