Wednesday, December 5, 2018

God's Names and Attributes -- L

by Hallie Gipson

We have reached the last month of 2018 and it seems to be slipping away quickly! According to the retail industry, Christmas was in full swing before Halloween –- or at least they wanted us to feel that way so we would rush about and make purchases that would certainly make us ‘merry and bright’! 

But as believers, our joy runs deeper than any shiny bauble we can purchase, or the warm glow we get when surrounded by family and friends.

God has showered His blessings of love, Life, and Light on those of us who deserve His wrath. He has accomplished all of that through His precious Son, Jesus Christ --- the Lamb of God and the Lion of Judah. God began weaving His tapestry of Salvation before time began.


John 3:16
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.”

Romans 5:8
“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

1 John 3:1
“See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God, and such we are.”

1 John 4:16
“We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love, abides in God, and God abides in Him.”

In the Old Testament, the prophet Micah extols God as the source of salvation to His people.

Micah 7:18
“Who is a God like You, who pardons iniquity and passes over the rebellious act of the remnant of His possession? He does not retain His anger forever, Because He delights in unchanging love.”


John 14:6
“Jesus said to him (Thomas), ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.’”

John 11:25-26
“Jesus said to her (Martha), ‘I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?’”


Psalm 27:1
“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?  . . .”

John 8:12
“Then Jesus spoke to them saying, ‘I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in darkness, but will have the Light of life.’”


Genesis 2:7
“Then the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.”

1 Thessalonians 5:9-10a
“For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us . . .”


John 1:29
“The next day he (John the Baptist) saw Jesus coming to him and said, ‘Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!’”

Revelation 5:11-13
“Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne and the living creatures and the elders; and the number of them was myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice,
          “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches
          and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.”
And every created thing which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying,
          “To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and
          honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.”

Revelation 12:10-11a
“Then I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, he who accuses them before our God day and night. And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb . . .”


Revelation 5:5
“And one of the elders said to me, “Weep no more; behold the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered . . .”

Where does your joy come from this Holy Season? May we never forget that our joy is rooted in the risen Lord who, in obedience to the Father, came to earth as a baby; lived a sinless life; died an excruciating death on the cross; and rose to give us eternal life.

 May our hearts echo the song recorded in Exodus 15:1-2
“Then Moses and the sons of Israel sang this song to the Lord, and said,
          “I will sing to the Lord, for He is highly exalted; . . .
          The Lord is my strength and song, and He has become my salvation;
          This is my God, and I will praise Him; My father’s God, and I will extol Him.”

Merry Christmas and may the God of all grace and glory fill you with His presence this season!

Monday, August 27, 2018

God's Names and Attributes -- 'K'

All of my efforts to speak of God’s names and attributes seem feeble at best. I can never reach the bottom of His endless, perfect Being! Whatever He possesses is possessed to the uttermost and whatever He does is done from His holiness and perfection and sovereignty!

He IS the King, King of Kings, Keeper, and Kind above all our deserving!


“The Lord is King forever and ever.”  Psalm 10:16

“Who is the King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, The Lord mighty in battle.”  Psalm 24:8

Isaiah recording The Lord’s words:
“I am the Lord, your Holy One, the Creator of Israel, your King.”  Isaiah 43:15


“The Lord sat as King at the flood; Yes, the Lord sits as King forever.”  Psalm 29:10

“--- He (Jesus Christ) who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone possesses immortality and dwells in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see. To Him be honor and eternal dominion! Amen.”     1 Timothy 6:15b-16

“And on His robe and on His thigh He has a name written, ‘KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS’.”  Revelation 19:16


“The Lord is your keeper; The Lord is your shade on your right hand.”  Psalm 121:5

KIND (adj.) – of a forbearing nature; arising from or characterized by sympathy or forbearance.

Of all God’s attributes, ‘kind’ is among those I cherish the most. Why? Because if God’s intentions toward those of us who deserve His wrath had not been kind, then we would have indeed perished! But instead, through the grace of Jesus Christ, we are given mercy, predestined, adopted, loved, and saved for all eternity!

“The Lord is righteous in all His ways and kind in all His deeds.”  Psalm 145:17

“He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.”  Ephesians 1:5-6

“He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him.”  Ephesians 1:9

“But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit . . . ”  Titus 3:4-5

“. . . like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation, if you have tasted the kindness of the Lord.”  1 Peter 2:2-3

“Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways! For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who became His counselor? Or who has first given to Him that it might be paid back to Him again? For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen.”  Romans 11:33-36

Sunday, July 8, 2018


By:  Shirley Wiggins                                                        
“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He Who promised is faithful.”  Hebrews 10:23

Will any good thing  ever come of my daily doings?   Those things I do every single day without even thinking about whether or not I will do any one of them today, I just do them!
My daily Bible studies, journal writings, research, collections of papers of  encouraging words for now, exciting words for tomorrow, and enthusiastic truths for eternity.

I cannot stop reaching, first thing every morning, for my

-paper, pen and pencil,
                                     -devotionals, and,

                           my first cup of coffee.
  And,  yet, sometimes I do wonder, am I wasting:

·      time,

·      resources,

·      money,

·      my life??
I honestly do not know if anything I do will ever make any eternal difference for anyone else.   And, yet, I cannot quit any one of these morning practices.  This is my chosen way to start each day, and it is my routine, my reason for rising in the early morning.  These things feed my faith and nourish my soul and my spirit.

The one good thing I do know comes of, by, and from my routine of morning habits is that I bask all day long in the warmth of fellowship with my Father.

Fellowship with my Father… the delight of my otherwise seemingly dull life.

I am never disappointed with Him:  He is the icing on my cake of life.  He is the cream in my coffee and tea.

He gives to me – and my life – purpose and joy.  He is the Bright Light on the Horizon of my Future:  HOPE.
Because He is, I am… He is the “I AM” Who enables me to be, period.

The Initiator of Life, He is the Impetus in life:  the Incentive for living in the day-to-day (the “nasty now-and-now”), no matter how “dull” my lackluster life appears, at any point in time, to others.
The Lord of Life is the inherent luster of life – He is the Glow of His own Glory:  the Holy Spirit Who indwells His people.

From tiny sparkles and twinkles, His iridescence is “a glow of light from within” – LUMINOSITY:  illuminating every dark corner of life---- He gives spiritual and intellectual enlightenment.  His wisdom gives clarifying explanation to all the questions of life’s obscurity.
He demystifies the mystifications of the obfuscations – of the cloudy confusions created by the artistic deceptions of modern day cultures.

The greatest threat to the world today, in my thinking, is the lawless suppression of truth.
Jesus Christ said, “I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me.”  John 14:6.

Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, His body, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled  to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.  Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He Who promised is faithful.  And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching.  Hebrews 10:19-23 (NIV.)
God said, … “Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God….(the way to salvation) … 1 Corinthians 1:24.

Those who seek to omit God and Jesus have fallen into Satan’s snare and are deceived into thinking (believing) that they are “wise” (know-it-all), but instead they are deceived:  see 1 Corinthians 1:18-31.
They are foolish in their deceived state, but convince themselves that they are “wise” and “intelligent.”  God’s plan of salvation seems to them foolish, and those who are saved by God’s method are,  in the eyes of the deceived, the “foolish” ones.

Ironic, but tragic.
For those who continue to embrace the lie by rejecting God’s truth condemn themselves to continuing deception.                                          See  2 Thessalonians 2:1-12.

Salvation and truth are inextricably linked:  See 2 Thessalonians 2:13-16, 17; 1 Timothy 2:4.
It is God’s desire that all people would repent of their sin, believe in His Son Jesus Christ,  and be saved in accordance with God’s Way and Truth  in order to gain eternal life.

I urge you,  first of all, to pray for all people.  Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them.  Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceable and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity.  This is good and pleases God, our Savior, Who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth.  For, ‘There is one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity – the Man Christ Jesus.  He gave His life to purchase freedom for everyone.  This is the message God gave to the world at just the right time.”    1 Timothy 2:1-6 (NLT.)

Now while they were on their way, Jesus entered a village [called Bethany], and a woman named Martha welcomed Him into her home.  She had a sister named Mary, who seated herself at the Lord’s feet and continually listening to His teaching.  But Martha was very busy and distracted with all of her serving responsibilities; and she approached Him and said, ‘Lord, is it of no concern to You that my sister has left me to do the serving alone?  Tell her to help me and do her part.’  But the Lord replied to her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered and anxious about so many things; but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part [that which is to her advantage], which will not be taken away from her.’”   Luke 10:38-42 (Amplified Bible.)

Today we have a choice – choose the good part, the one thing necessary.
Let us not become so busy we are distracted from the blessed privilege of sitting down and listening to hear Jesus’s words and thoughts toward us, individually.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

The Things We Give to God

By Shirley Wiggins
Thoughts,  like lightning bolts,  can run in and out of our minds seeming sometimes like a million –a – minute.  Some flash into our minds and lodge in our hearts and we continue to recall them days later.

That’s what happened to me some years ago as I sat in the Beth Moore video Bible study entitled, Mercy Triumphs.
Beth was “painting” some beautiful, large strokes with the Scripture “brush,” and I was furiously taking notes because she was talking about how joy can be “birthed” from anguish and through anguish and the two can co-exist, being specifically referenced to childbirth in the Scriptures.

She mentioned her grandchildren and their obvious desire and delight in spending time with her.  As she said this, my mind had its own rush of memories related to my precious grandchildren (two at that time, and now there are three!).
I promptly fell in love with each of mine and began daydreaming about them long before they were born!    I have no doubt this love will continue to bring joy until the day, somewhere in the future, when my physical life gives way to my heavenly life in eternity.  And, there only God knows  how  we will love then forever.

As Beth shared that day, this thought came to me and I wrote it in my notes:
“What does our joy in and toward God make Him feel?  Consider the process of falling in love with my grandbabies; consider my own story.”

My own story is that I have had so much fun with my grandbabies from day one!  I have a million stories to tell of the cute things they did and said, not to mention the utterly profound things they’ve said as children that was almost too deep for an adult much less children!
The Scripture says, “out of the mouths of babes…”

The delight they gave to me in the forms of a freshly picked flower, a pretty rock, a hug, and so on and on, no matter what they gave me, I treasured it and loved them with all my heart.
One of the things they have each  given to me – all three of them – is the opportunity to grab my Bible to read Bible stories and talk and laugh together.  My oldest grandson and my granddaughter’s favorite spot was the outdoor swing and they had a deep interest in the stories of Jesus and the people in the Bible.  So does the youngest one today who is only four years old.

 What joy!
Do you ever think about what you give to God and how that makes Him feel?

God is love and He loves each one of us, so nothing we can give Him will make Him love us more;  but I would love to think that I could bring joy to my heavenly Father!
So what could I “give” to God as I start each day?  

The joy of seeing me reach for His Word with absolute delight and eager anticipation of what He will say to me today?
The joy of hearing my prayers of praise for the greatness and the grandness of Who He is and the forgiveness of all my sins and the resulting salvation He has given?

The joy of seeing me pause throughout my day, while in a particularly difficult set of circumstances, to remind Him (and mysel) that I am depending upon His goodness and kindness and faithfulness to see me through each one?
The joy of seeing me in attendance in His house of worship and prayer each and every Sunday, wearing a full faced smile as I greet His other children?

The joy of seeing me return good for evil to others who’ve hurt me or offended me or behaved irresponsibly (in my own personal opinion!)?
The joy of seeing me embrace His Son as my Savior who saved me once and forgives me daily as I ask?

The joy of seeing me listen attentively to His Holy Spirit as my Comforter, Counselor, constant Companion, and Guide into all truth?
The joy of seeing me study His Word, the Holy Bible, really studying it and not just giving it a quick and brief reading, or neglecting to open it all day for days on end?

How do I spend my time, my energy, my money?  I use the word “my” very loosely for there is nothing I can give to God that He didn’t first give to me and all I can do is return a good investment on what He has so abundantly provided to and for me.
I turn from my examination to what I give to God to the question of what I give to Him that I can stop giving to Him.

I can stop complaining and grumbling about every little thing.  I can stop giving Him disrespect and stop wasting all the good gifts He has given to me.
I can daily show Him my love and respect and appreciation and worship of Him through my actions and behavior in my personal quiet alone time, my actions toward my family, my friends, my neighbors, and those whom I meet in the daily routine of life.

I can behave as the ambassador of Christ that I truly am because I have repented of my sin, received God’s forgiveness through His Son and my Savior, and daily surrender control of my life to God through Jesus by the help of His Holy Spirit, and live to point others to God in Jesus Christ.
How about you?  What do you consistently give to God?

 In God’s Word, Jesus said:

“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser.  Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.
Already you are clean because of the Word that I have spoken to you.

Abide in Me, and I in you.  As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in Me.
I am the vine; you are the branches.  Whoever abides in Me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.

If anyone does not abide in Me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned.
If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.  By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be My disciples.  As the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you.  Abide in My love.  If you keep My  commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.  These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.

This is My commandment that you love one another as I have loved you.  Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down His life for His friends.  You are My friends if you do what I command you.  No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.
You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in My name, He may give it to you.  These things I command you, so that you will love one another.”

                                                                                     John 15:1-17 (ESV)

 O Father,

You give joy!  Help us to give You  joy because our hearts truly delight in You!

Thank You so much for all of the great and good gifts that You bestow on us.

We give you praise!  In Jesus’ name,



Edited Repost from June 30, 2012


Saturday, August 26, 2017


Do not fear for there is nothing to fear:  Immanuel Lives
By Shirley Wiggins

In Exodus 13:17 – 14:31, we read  an amazing account of how God  saved His people from an enemy in pursuit by means of a sea divided….
 As the children of Israel fled from Egypt, with Moses in front of the people  with God to lead them, and Pharaoh in pursuit behind them with the Egyptian army to recapture them, they reached the waters of the Red Sea.

As they looked around them and assessed their current circumstances, “they became very frightened;” (Exodus 14:10b).
 Moses’ mouth said to the people, as recorded  in Exodus 14:13-14 (NASB),     …”Do not fear!  Stand by and see the salvation of the LORD which He will accomplish for you today; for the Egyptians whom you have seen today, you will never see them again forever.  The Lord will fight for you while you keep silent.”

I wonder what Moses’ mind was saying as he told the people not to be afraid, since Exodus 14:15-18 records these words from the LORD: 
“Then the LORD said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to Me?  Tell the sons of Israel to go forward.  As for you, lift up your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, and the sons of Israel shall go through the midst of the sea on dry land.  As for Me, behold, I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians so that they will go in after them; and I will be honored through Pharaoh and all his army, through his chariots and his horsemen.  Then the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD, when I am honored through Pharaoh, through his chariots and his horsemen.”

I  wonder if Moses’ mind wasn’t calling out loudly, though silently, to the Lord for urgent help since the Lord asked him directly, “Why are you crying out to Me?”
The Lord gave all the directions needed:  He told Moses what to tell the Israelites to do, and what Moses was to do, and even what He Himself would do:

·       Tell the sons of Israel to go forward,

·       You lift up your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it; and you will all go through the midst of the sea on dry land;

·       As for Me, the Lord said, I will send Pharaoh and all his army into the sea and they will perish;  and the result would be that the Egyptians would know who is the LORD, for He would be honored through the death of Pharaoh and his army.

I am astounded at the greatness of God, the LORD!  As I explore Scripture to discover more about God, and life, and me and us ---  people in general,  I learn how specific people interacted with God in the Old Testament and with God through Jesus in the New Testament.    It never fails to bring me to the awe-filled worship of this God that people are invited to know – urged to know by God Himself.  He does not hide His heart to be known by His people.
Example after example from OT through the NT, we see again and again the faithfulness of God to guide, instruct, protect and provide for His people.  He reveals Himself by His ways and His workings that people might know that He is the Lord.

He warns against falling into idolatry and becoming deceived by careless and callous untruths, while revealing truth in its depths through the pages of His carefully preserved Word, the Holy Scriptures.
Deuteronomy 29:29  records the  interesting fact that in all of God’s revealing and showing and telling, people will never be able to fully comprehend God Himself, and that there are yet things not revealed:  “The secret things belong unto the Lord our God, but the things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all of the words of this law.”( Ampified Bible.)

Ours is to know in order to obey.  What remains secret belongs to God.  There is no God like Yahweh God.  He retains secrets, but we are an entirely open book to Him:
““Can anyone hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him?” says the Lord. “Do not I fill heaven and earth?” says the Lord.” Jeremiah 23:24 AMP

His Word is lavish with its revelations of God’s power, His love and mercy and grace, His promises that His Word is true and He is Whom He reveals Himself to be, and that He can and will do all that He has said He will do – forever.  He is unchangeable and unshakeable and unexplainable and remains incomprehensively majestic and magnificent.
The question is, “Do we believe Him?”

At each and every “Red Sea Place” in our lives, God is already there with the guidance we need and the strength and power to bring us safely through, with abundant comfort and care and provision and protection.
Isaiah 41:9-10  (Amplified Bible): “ You whom I (the Lord) have taken from the ends of the earth and have called you from the corners of it, and said to you, You are my servant—I have chosen you and not cast you off …Fear not [there is nothing to fear], for I am with you; do not look around you in terror and be dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen and harden you to difficulties, yes, I will help you; yes I will hold you up and retain you with My [victorious] right hand of rightness and justice.”

Oh, that we would believe this great God!  That I would truly believe this great God!
 As you and I stand today at this point in our lives and assess our own circumstances, are there difficulties facing us that frightens us about how our future will unfold?

Let me encourage you to look beyond the river of fear and invite the Lord to make His presence felt by you.  With eyes of faith, choose to believe what you cannot see by believing the words on the pages of God’s Word that you can see.  Invite His Holy Spirit to make His presence fully known to you, bringing to you the comfort and provision He has ready for you.
In a poem that I read today by Annie Johnson Flint, she asked this question  in the first line:  “Have you come to the Red Sea place in your life, where in spite of all you can do,”  that you know there is no way out or back, but the only way is ‘through’ this particular situation. 

Death is a Red Sea dividing loved ones by the River of Anguish of grief and loss.
The death of a loved one is painful and difficult, and my dad’s death held its own unique heartbreak and grief because it appeared to have come by his own hand.  Accidental, or intentional?   We never knew the answer to that question. 

My mother held us together with her faith in God which gave her strength even though her own way was a blurred path because of her tears of absolute anguish, for on top of grieving as a widow, she had to grapple with all the unanswered whys that a questionable death leaves in its wake.

My mother’s own death occurred 13 years later, soon after the birth of my last child – just three years after the arrival of the long-awaited granddaughter into the circle of her three grandsons at that time.  (Since then, she has had three more grandsons added to her list of descendants.)
She was a loving and thoroughly involved grandmother  -  a woman who loved to laugh and looked for the enjoyment and fun of life, even though she was already a grieving young widow by the time her first grandchild was born.

Her death was sudden and totally unexpected after a brief illness, hospitalization, and emergency surgery.
Word of her death seemed to knock the very breath from our bodies as my brothers and I fought to maintain balance in the suddenness of being left without a parent on earth.  Our core as siblings was lost when both our parents were gone from us.

A stripping away of that sense of security inherent in a mother’s felt love in her daughter would, throughout that first long night of shock and grief after her death,  sweep over me with such force that I would feel nearly as if I were drowning,  that I could not breathe.
I could not then identify the overwhelming feelings of loss at being left without a parent on this earth as feeling like an “orphan.”  However, much later, I would re-discover the verse recorded at John 14:18 and understand that emotion as the peculiar grief of an orphan. 

Jesus knew that after His death on the cross His disciples would suffer that anguish of having the core of their faith removed from their visible sight,  and so He gave His precious promise to His disciples then:  :  “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.”    Nestled still today in the greatest Book ever written, you too can find this promise in the Book of St. John, chapter 14, verse 18 (NASB) .
He did come to me – in a way that I could never have imagined on the day of her funeral, 31 years ago today. 

At that time and in spite of the fact that I was an adult, happily married to a loving and supportive husband, and the mother of three young children, I now equate that particular heavy emotional pain as being the grief of an orphan.
The devastating sense of aloneness a child without a mother must feel!

In the death of my mother, one of my Red Sea River of Anguish experiences, the Lord God was already there and would not leave me ever. 
He was constantly by my side, and though I was so aware of my grief and pain that  I was unaware of Him, He was nevertheless with me, and brought beautiful comfort to me in such a way that now even after 31 years have passed, I remember vividly the experience.

On the way to my mother’s funeral, my husband and I were in the front seat of our car with my youngest brother and his wife in the back seat of the car.

All at once,  as another overwhelming wave of sorrow rushed over me, l felt such a strong  anguish in thinking of life without her presence that it seemed it would crush me.  
Then I ‘saw’ with my mind’s eyes words written and I read them, “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.  In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you.  I go to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself;  that where I am, there you may be also.”

At the time, I felt so comforted in knowing that she had been carried to a mansion – a place of her own.
  For at the time of her death, she did not have a home of her own.  She would not tell me why, but she had left her husband at the time because of unbearable circumstances.   She promised to tell me about the situation  later after she was released from the hospital for her plans were to go home with me to my home in another state.

 The plan that never came into being was that she would stay the summer with me while she recuperated from her illness and surgery.   Instead of leaving the hospital, she left the land of the living in the earth.
As we arrived at the church, we were ushered to the appropriate  pews at the front of the building on the right aisle facing the casket placed before the pulpit.

Living out of state, I had never met her pastor.  As the service began,  the prayers and readings and songs went on and on, and again I was overwhelmed by that crushing panic-stricken grief.
Then the pastor read his funeral text:  “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.  In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you.  I go to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself,  that where I am, there you may be also.”

 All of a sudden, it was as if the roof over my seat had been pulled back and the brightest, warmest,  largest  ray of sun and light shone down from heaven on my head.  It felt as if I had been lifted from a cold drenching rain and placed securely on the lap of God Himself,  with the sensation  that a warm, soft blanket had been wrapped snugly around me and I was hugged to Him. 
 I was flooded with the sensation of being filled with the most lavish and luxurious sense of well-being:  a joy and a peace that I cannot describe in words poured over me and I could only smile from ear-to-ear in the most amazing sense of truly trouble-free happiness.  It seemed like I was a little child being comforted in her parent’s embrace.

Though I have been comforted by the Lord’s  Holy Spirit on many occasions since that time, I have never felt that same sense of His presence again. 
He has proven Himself real to me  in His invisible presence  in many ways  over the years and God continues to show me the reality of the truth in and of His Words.

I never tire of the reading and studying of His word.  He is my home away from home.  But, one day, I will be carried to my real home, into that very special place He has prepared for me, and for all who are His children, blood-bought by His Son, and our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.
“…Surely I am coming quickly.”  Amen.  Even so, come Lord Jesus!”  Revelation 22:20 (NKJV.)

I wrote these words five years ago.  My testimony is the same today  – only more fervent. 
God’s presence in the life of His people is pure joy!  His blessings make all of life a purpose-filled journey into eternity.   Each day is a God-filled adventure with daily opportunities to have our faith in Him proven genuine,  as our trust in Him removes all fear.

May you be encouraged to know that God has no favorites and He is faithful to all people who will allow Him a place to work His miracles in each life.   No matter the situation you find yourself in today, He is the God of grace and glory.  His power and love is boundless and borderless.  He works through every circumstance to give us a future of good and a hope for the very best!
  May you be blessed with the presence of Jesus Christ in His Holy Spirit as you read and study His Word, The Holy Bible.

 Exodus 13:17-14:31      New American Standard Bible (NASB)
God Leads the People

17 Now when Pharaoh had let the people go, God did not lead them by the way of the land of the Philistines, even though it was near; for God said, “ The people might change their minds when they see war, and return to Egypt.” 18 Hence God led the people around by the way of the wilderness to the [a]Red Sea; and the sons of Israel went up in martial array from the land of Egypt. 19 Moses took the bones of Joseph with him, for he had made the sons of Israel solemnly swear, saying, “God will surely [b]take care of you, and you shall carry my bones from here with you.” 20 Then they set out from Succoth and camped in Etham on the edge of the wilderness. 21  The Lord was going before them in a pillar of cloud by day to lead them on the way, and in a pillar of fire by night to give them light, that they might [c]travel by day and by night. 22 [d]He did not take away the pillar of cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people.
Pharaoh in Pursuit

14 Now the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Tell the sons of Israel to turn back and camp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea; you shall camp in front of Baal-zephon, opposite it, by the sea. For Pharaoh will say of the sons of Israel, ‘They are wandering aimlessly in the land; the wilderness has shut them in.’ Thus I will [e]harden Pharaoh’s heart, and he will chase after them; and I will be honored through Pharaoh and all his army, and the Egyptians will know that I am the Lord.” And they did so.
When the king of Egypt was told that the people had fled, [f]Pharaoh and his servants had a change of heart toward the people, and they said, “What is this we have done, that we have let Israel go from serving us?” So he made his chariot ready and took his people with him; and he took six hundred select chariots, and all the other chariots of Egypt with officers over all of them. The Lord [g]hardened the heart of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and he chased after the sons of Israel as the sons of Israel were going out [h] boldly. Then the Egyptians chased after them with all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, his horsemen and his army, and they overtook them camping by the sea, beside Pi-hahiroth, in front of Baal-zephon.

10 As Pharaoh drew near, the sons of Israel [i]looked, and behold, the Egyptians were marching after them, and they became very frightened; so the sons of Israel cried out to the Lord. 11 Then they said to Moses, “Is it because there were no graves in Egypt that you have taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you dealt with us in this way, [j]bringing us out of Egypt? 12  Is this not the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, ‘[k]Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.”
The Sea Is Divided

13 But Moses said to the people, “ Do not fear! [l]Stand by and see the salvation of the Lord which He will accomplish for you today; for the Egyptians whom you have seen today, you will never see them again forever. 14  The Lord will fight for you while you keep silent.”
15 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to Me? Tell the sons of Israel to go forward. 16 As for you, lift up your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, and the sons of Israel shall [m]go through the midst of the sea on dry land. 17 As for Me, behold, I will [n]harden the hearts of the Egyptians so that they will go in after them; and I will be honored through Pharaoh and all his army, through his chariots and his horsemen. 18  Then the Egyptians will know that I am the Lord, when I am honored through Pharaoh, through his chariots and his horsemen.”
19  The angel of God, who had been going before the camp of Israel, moved and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud moved from before them and stood behind them. 20 So it came between the camp of Egypt and the camp of Israel; and there was the cloud [o]along with the darkness, yet it gave light at night. Thus the one did not come near the other all night.

21  Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord [p]swept the sea back by a strong east wind all night and turned the sea into dry land, so the waters were divided. 22  The sons of Israel [q]went through the midst of the sea on the dry land, and the waters were like a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. 23 Then the Egyptians took up the pursuit, and all Pharaoh’s horses, his chariots and his horsemen went in after them into the midst of the sea. 24 At the morning watch, the Lord looked down on the [r]army of the Egyptians [s]through the pillar of fire and cloud and brought the [t]army of the Egyptians into confusion. 25 He [u]caused their chariot wheels to swerve, and He made them drive with difficulty; so the Egyptians said, “Let [v]us flee from Israel, for the Lord is fighting for them against the Egyptians.”
26 Then the Lord said to Moses, “ Stretch out your hand over the sea so that the waters may come back over the Egyptians, over their chariots and their horsemen.” 27 So Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to its normal state at daybreak, while the Egyptians were fleeing [w]right into it; then the Lord [x] overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea. 28 The waters returned and covered the chariots and the horsemen, [y]even Pharaoh’s entire army that had gone into the sea after them; not even one of them remained. 29 But the sons of Israel walked on dry land through the midst of the sea, and the waters were like a wall to them on their right hand and on their left.

30  Thus the Lord saved Israel that day from the hand of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians dead on the seashore. 31 When Israel saw the great [z]power which the Lord had [aa]used against the Egyptians, the people [ab]feared the Lord, and they believed in the Lord and in His servant Moses.
 2; Num 14:1-4; Deut 17:16
            1. Exodus 13:18 : Josh 1:14; 4:Exodus 14:11 : Ex 5:21; 15:24; 16:2; Ps 106:7, 8Exodus 14:12 : Ex 6:9Exodus 14:13 : Gen 15:1; 46:3; Ex 20:20; 2 Chr 20:15, 17; Is 41:10, 13, 14Exodus 14:13 : Ex 14:30; 15:2Exodus 14:14 : Ex 14:25; 15:3; Deut 1:30; 3:22; Josh 23:3; 2 Chr 20:29; Neh 4:20Exodus    :

Have you come to the Red Sea place in your life,

Where, in spite of all you can do,

There is no way out, there is no way back,

There is no other way but through?

Then wait on the Lord with a trust serene

Till the night of your fear is gone;

He will send the wind, he will heap the floods,

When He says to your soul, “Go on.”

And His hand will lead you through – clear through –

Ere the watery walls roll down,

No foe can reach you, no wave can touch,

No mightiest sea can drown;

The tossing billows may rear their crests,

Their foam at your feet may break,

But over their bed you shall walk dry shod

In the path that your Lord will make.

In the morning watch, ‘neath the lifted cloud,

You shall see but the Lord alone,

When He leads you on from the place of the sea

To a land that you have not known;

And your fears shall pass as your foes have passed,

You shall be no more afraid;

You shall sing His praise in a better place,

A place that His hand has made.

                       -- Annie Johnson Flint.




From “Streams in the Desert”, pages 189-190;  Compiled by Mrs. Charles E. Cowman; Zondervan Publishing House, A Division of the Zondervan Corporation; Grand Rapids, Michigan; Sixty-eighth printing April 1973.



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