Once Upon a Rooftop: Four Men and a Mat

Once upon a rooftop

Four men came with a mat

To lay a man at Jesus’ feet.

But what is up with that?

 

What do these rooftop men stand for,

Who lowered him on down?

Because God always has a plan,

But not for man’s renown.

 

Perhaps the first man’s like the Father,

God of light and love,

Who sent His only Son to earth

From heaven’s throne above.

 

Who knows the heartache He endured

To see Christ on the cross

Partaking of such guilt and shame?

Just think how much it cost!

 

Our burdens Jesus gladly bore,

Though He endured much pain.

For our own sins He suffered loss.

Through Him we’ve much to gain

 

Because the Father gave Him

As a sacrifice for sin.

He let His back be mocked and whipped,

Our victory to win.

 

Therefore His wounds bring us true peace.

Our burdens He did bear

Through the power of the Spirit

Who this truth does share.

 

The Father, Spirit, Son, you see,

That blessed Trinity,

Are like an awesome triangle

That brings us liberty.

 

But one more rooftop man gives you

A brand new faith dimension.

For God’s right arm did all the work,

But we are His extension,

 

The reason for the rectangle

We’re privileged to help carry,

A corner of the sinner’s mat

Which once appeared so scary.

 

But Jesus tore apart the roof

That wouldn’t let us near

To come into God’s presence,

And He says, “Be of good cheer!”

 

To Jesus’ left the Father stands.

They each hold up an end.

The Spirit, also, hovering near,

To God’s Word does attend.

 

Invisibly they wait for us

To take the final part,

Because He’s given us a choice:

“Ignore” or “take to heart.”

 

The Father, Spirit, and Son do long

To help us in our task.

They’re always there to meet our needs,

If only we will ask.

 

https://atomic-temporary-102676306.wpcomstaging.com/healing/pull-pet-pit/

When You’re Born Different: Identity Crisis

I. When You’re Born Different

When you’re born different, people look at you funny – like you’ll never measure up to their perfect standards. I should know. From a young age I struggled with self-worth. At school I had to wear a “pirate’s” patch to correct my lazy eye and plates in my shoes to help flat feet develop arches. Shorter than most of my peers, I had a painful shyness that kept me from telling the so-called “beautician” not to crop my locks to match my height. No other girl in my kindergarten class had a pixie cut. I hated that boyish look and the way my teachers tried to fix me.

“Why don’t you keep a tidy desk like other girls?” they asked.

“What TV programs keep you from getting your homework done?”

“Don’t be afraid. I won’t bite. Why won’t you talk?”

Maybe I clammed up because I felt so messed up inside – identity crisis city. My hair could not grow fast enough to hide the shame I felt. Why didn’t this late bloomer fit in with everybody else? I tried to please them but all I got was frustration. That’s where all this garbled chicken scratch came from: multiple ideas bottled up inside, exploding like warm soda once the cork is popped. Piles of unorganized papers strewn everywhere litter my office space. This makes no sense.

CRINKLE, RIP, SHRED!

II. Identity Crises Caused By Peer Pressure

Tears roll down my cheeks as hours of exhaustive research get flushed down the drain. At least, that’s how it feels sometimes. But perhaps I can salvage this mess. Meanwhile, this is what it feels like:

Pearls before swine. Fruit rotting on the vine plops into a sinkhole for creativity. What a waste of time and ink and trees! Identity crisis. Who am I? Help!

Living to meet others’ expectations is like the Israelites gathering stubble to make bricks. It doesn’t blunt the crack of Pharaoh’s whip. After you’ve been under it a while, you start to wonder, “Who am I anymore?”

Aaron tried to please people, and look what happened. Caving to peer pressure, he cast aside faith more precious than gold in favor or worldly gold. He took wealth plundered from Egyptians – God’s favor so richly poured out on His people – and from it formed a killer calf which caused three thousand deaths – all because they had their eyes fixed on absent Moses. Tired of waiting for his promised return, they sought an excuse to reconnect with old bondages.

Like Esau, they squandered their birthright on temporary feel-good pleasures. Then there’s Samson who was born different – meaning, he had a special purpose. Yet he yielded to Delilah’s badgering. Close-up and personal peer pressure foisted upon him an identity crisis of major proportions.

Snip, snip! There went his locks.

Back to the hair thing again.

I wear it the way I want to know, rather than how others want it styled.

III. Free to Be Different

Because I’m different. I don’t need to wear my hair the way they say I should. Instead of giving in to others, I’ll fight to keep it long. I’m not changing it to fit their mold, or other aspects of my personal appearance for that matter. And when it comes to personality, I’m free to be myself – which means, I’ll gladly be the person God wants me to be. Because that’s what’s it’s all about for the Bible believer – believing who God says you are in Christ.

“For if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away. All things have become new.” (II Corinthians 5:17)

So, don’t let your identity crisis define you.

I pray that this article blesses someone.

https://atomic-temporary-102676306.wpcomstaging.com/poetry/afraid-to-forgive/

Christ Versus Cain: The Fruit of Their Own Sweat

(Cain Versus Christ: a stark contrast)

 

I. Cain Felt the Strain of His Own Pain

 

Though jealous Cain knew how to sweat, what sort of fruit did he beget?

For, God liked Abel’s offering, but Cain brought fruit that didn’t sing.

The soil in which Cain strived to toil somehow resulted in turmoil.

Alas, to have one’s fruit inspected and then totally rejected

Doesn’t make one feel accepted, but can that be overcome?

 

Some cave into rage to blot out their own pain, because cutting it off at the root is easier than facing it. But a slice of bad advice will lead to ruin in the end.

In other words, Cain clearly felt the strain of his own pain.

The fruit Cain did beget by his own sweat led to regret.

II. Abel Got it Right, But Not to Cain’s Delight

 

Because Abel got it right, but not to Cain’s delight.

Cain couldn’t be happy for him, therefore his countenance grew dim.

He coveted his brother’s favor, yet the feast he couldn’t savor

For his injured pride refused in any way to be amused.

 

In anger this man chose to stew. That’s what comparison will do.

Like worthless riches it will rust and leave you lying in the dust.

Had Cain repented of the sin which he’d allowed to enter in,

God might have sent refreshing rain and a blessing on his grain.

But there can be no true prosperity without heart charity.

 

Behold God’s message to him: “Do like Abel. Offer up a spotless lamb!”

 

Oh, if only Cain had believed! If only he had received the gift of grace offered freely from God’s hand! But Cain refused and wallowed in the strain of his own pain. And when he murdered Abel, the first prophet to be martyred, the very ground turned against him. He became a restless wanderer, having squandered the marvelous riches of God’s mercy toward him.

 

The fruit Cain did beget by his own sweat caused him to fret.

 

III. Jesus Came to Bless, Not Stress, Those Under Duress

After all, you can’t be blessed when you feel the stress that comes from being pressed beneath your father’s curse. A ground yielding thorns and thistles was Adam’s punishment for eating from the forbidden tree. The knowledge of good and evil, in effect, killed his joy for growing food. (see Genesis 3:17).

Cain knew evil and it really killed him. He felt the post-traumatic stress caused by his own duress. But God still chose to bless, even though Cain refused it.

“My punishment is more than I can bear,” Cain told the Lord (Genesis 4:13).

Fast forward many years later when Jesus the “second Adam” would take upon Himself the punishment no man can bear. He laid down his life as a completely pleasing offering to God. By the sweat of His own brow He redeemed us from Adam’s curse.

Much good fruit did He beget from His own sweat.

Jesus’ blood speaks a better word than the blood of Abel (Hebrews 12:24). Let’s not waste the grace He has for us.

 

God’s Joy Unspeakable Silences Bullies

God’s joy unspeakable silences bullies

And leaves them with nothing to say,

For, lifting our sadness, it gives us fresh strength

Through Jesus, God’s Word to obey.

 

This gift of God’s grace comes from knowing

We’re forgiven for all of our sins,

Because Jesus died to save us from our pride.

Everyone who believes in Him wins!

 

His blood is enough to atone for our crimes.

To their scourges we need not fall prey.

When we know God is for us, then we cannot lose.

No bully can stand in our way.

 

Goliaths will shrink when we focus on Christ,

Receiving His garment of praise.

His overblown insults will dwindle to zilch

When our hands up to heaven we raise.

 

The giant’s a pipsqueak compared to our LORD,

So let him be small in our eyes.

We’ll pop his balloon by exalting the name

That whittles the bum down to size.

 

Blind rage feeds a bully and makes us his slave

If to its desires we yield.

To magnify problems makes mountains of them,

But Jesus is our hope and shield,

 

Because in His shelter there’s freedom from fear,

So under His shadow let’s hide,

Drawing near to our Savior while scorning the doubt.

Joy unspeakable shall be our guide.

 

Resisting self-pity, depression and hate,

Let’s declare that in Jesus we’re free.

Though tears fall like rain, we can choose to proclaim

“There is no condemnation for me!”

 

As we keep on declaring the greatness of God,

Hurt feelings will be forced to flee.

For when joy unspeakable enters our hearts

We’ll know that in Christ we are free.

 

 

 

To Cure Infertility, Abide in the Vine

The cure for infertility is staying in the vine,

Partaking of the holy bread and sharing in the wine.

No infertility is found inside the divine vine

For your life to be productive, then with Christ it must align.

 

For there is health in the vine,

True wealth in the vine,

We are fruitful and we multiply

When we stay in the vine

 

We are connected, resurrected

When we stay in the vine,

Well-nourished, we do flourish

As we abide in the divine

 

Without me, Jesus said,

You can do nothing, there’s no fruit

For everyone who trusts in me

Is like a tender shoot.

 

They get their life from me,

Not from worn-out religious rules

You cannot multiply if you

Imbibe the wine of fools.

 

How do you then abide in me?

By faith you must partake

And faith comes from my Word,

Which power nobody can shake

 

Drink in my Word with all your heart,

Its truth will set you free,

My Word has power to heal your lack

Of productivity.

 

But listening to worldly wisdom

Clogs the pipes of grace

That help you to digest my Word.

Would you behold my face?

 

You can’t be friends with Jezebel

And see my kingdom come.

And listening to Ahab

Will not help my will be done.

 

 

For Jezebel speaks of control,

Rebellion is her game.

And if you listen to her words,

Then you’ll be brought to shame.

 

She’ll tell you where to go,

And what to do and where to sit

Before me she won’t bow

And to My Word she won’t submit

 

Her husband Ahab’s fleshly cravings

Spoil the precious grapes.

He chokes the vibrant branches

With constrictive masking tapes.

 

It leads to infertility,

An absence of good fruit.

No spiritual authority

Is found within the shoot.

 

They’ll turn you into eunuchs

If you do not throw them down.

Resist the urge to please those guys.

Don’t cower when they frown.

 

The fear of man will lay a snare

And cause you to get burned.

If that’s the case, consider it

A lesson you have learned.

 

Without Me you will shrivel,

Wither up and slowly die.

It hurts to go your own way,

On your own flesh to rely.

 

It’s time to reconnect with God,

Who helps you to believe,

For I will never cast you out

If you will but receive.

https://miracle-times.com/faith/seeing-believing/

https://miracle-times.com/faith/how-will-god-do-it/