When was the last time you had a good, hard cry? What was it about? Was it truly a good cry, or was there remorse or regret in it? There IS a difference in our cries–it lies in the heart behind them.
“In the days of His humanity, [Jesus] offered up both prayers and pleas with loud crying and tears to the One able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His devout behavior. Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered.”Hebrews 5:7-8 NASB
JESUS OFFERED UP BOTH PRAYERS AND PLEAS WITH LOUD CRYING AND TEARS
These verses recently stopped me in my tracks. I was fully aware of Jesus praying and pleading with the Father during His time here on earth as a human, but it’s how He prayed and pleaded in this verse that struck me differently–“with loud crying and tears!” We may remember seeing Jesus’ agony, praying and pleading in the garden, pending His death, when “His sweat fell to the ground like great drops of blood” (Luke 22:44 NLT); but have you heard this kind of prayer? His suffering was SO heavy that it caused Him to cry loudly with a HEAVY amount of emotion!! The Greek word for this literal “outcry” helps me wrap my mind around this more; it says it was like a “boisterous shrieking, like a wounded person emitting non-human-type sounds.”1 Doesn’t it make you wonder how Peter, James, and John slept through that and didn’t hear it, being nearby?!? Jesus cried real teardrops and made loud, agonizing noises in His suffering that would turn any head; He experienced deep feeling in His senses; He was affected!
WHAT DID JESUS DO WHEN HE FELT LIKE THIS?
Based on the meanings of the Greek words in these two verses, Jesus:
WHAT CAN WE EXPECT?
Christ experienced suffering! We know this, yet why do we think we’ve done something wrong, if things start to go “wrong?” If Jesus, as the Son of God, experienced suffering and heavy emotion, why would we, as children of God, think we get a free pass and shouldn’t experience suffering…the kind that makes our souls and voices shriek…ourselves? On the flip side, we also shouldn’t think that we’re not adopted children of God, because we’re in a time of suffering! When we experience suffering (that hasn’t been caused by a sinful decision), we have the opportunity to take hold of what’s good out of it, just like Jesus did. We have the unique experience that requires a response, and how we respond shows others what we feel is worthwhile (worthy of respect).
One day, in the New Jerusalem, there won’t be any of this type of crying (Yeah! This same kind of “boisterous shrieking” that Jesus felt…and we can feel on our journey here.). Let’s stay focused on why we’re here, submit, and obey. Even when it’s hard and our humanity wants the danger to go away, we have the opportunity to grab hold of something good out of it!
1 “2906. kraugé.” Bible Hub, https://biblehub.com/greek/2906.htm. Accessed 14 September 2022.
Multiple songs had the same message: I’m unashamedly serving the King, Who deserves ALL the glory; any glory we get is borrowed, so don’t even worship me or make me an idol; focus your worship on Him! I was checking out a variety of songs earlier today by a particular music artist, which I thought could appeal to my teenage kiddos. An idea came to me to see if this artist was going to be in concert anywhere nearby in the foreseen future; I decided to look it up. I read a few reviews of the artist’s current tour. One gave the concert a lower rating, because the artist (who is the headliner) and opening artists didn’t come out after the concert to take pictures with the fans or sign autographs; this, apparently, irked the individual a bit. As I continued to listen to a number of additional songs by the artist, God gave me a thought. Given the message, over and over again, in the artist’s songs, maybe the reason he didn’t want to take pictures and sign autographs afterward is because it wasn’t about him (I’m super emotional today, anyway, but this totally gets water spouts from my eyes working!)!! HE didn’t want to be the attention!! Rather, he wanted to give the attention to Whom it was due! I don’t know about you, but if this is his reason for denying meet and greets, I find it extremely refreshing in a world that’s all about “me” and getting attention!
In the early verses of Hebrews, Christ is described as “the radiance of [God the Father’s] glory and the express image of His nature” (1:3). The Greek word for “nature,” in this verse, is “hypóstasis” and means to stand under/to have a legitimate claim to what is guaranteed under an agreement. Even though this is the case, we see in Hebrews 5 that Christ “didn’t glorify Himself…” (5:5). In the text, we’re directed to the source: God the Father is the One Who called His Son to His position (5:1-4, 5, 10). Christ has a legit claim to His position as High Priest, yet He doesn’t snatch those accolades and parade them around to bring glory to Himself! He is “the radiance of His Father’s glory!”
As the Father continues to show me areas of my heart and mind that need exfoliating (this is a nod to His work talked about in the last post), this area requires a long pause.
As I’m writing this, the Father is, through the Spirit, bringing to mind a conversation I just had this afternoon with my neighbor in which I wasn’t careful to radiate the Father’s glory. I just sent her a text to clear up Who REALLY is the valued source!
My prayer is that we, as a Liv community, will be mindful, as the music artist I was listening to seemed to be, of how we act and speak, being careful to shine HIS glory, not seek our own. AMEN!
Before you call me a freak, let me explain.
Many of you know my health journey. For those of you who don’t, here are some of my “thorns:”
In mid January this year (a month and a half after having Covid), my health took another turn. During the following four months, I was in bed for two. During the two months I wasn’t in bed, only eight of those days were without some type of symptom related to the above issues, affecting my mobility and functionality. I knew I couldn’t keep living like that! Something had to change! Through the wisdom God gave a friend and her courage to speak it, I started down a different, natural, holistic path from the ones I’ve trodded before, investigating as much as my brain could absorb. In my research, God led me to a web site, where I saw this:
A gigantic light bulb illuminated brightly in my mind, as I became aware that every area of my body’s compromised! I have MULTIPLE symptoms that’re listed above under EVERY organ of my complex lymphatic/glymphatic system! This showed me why my immune and circulatory systems have been affected in such chronic ways–my lymphatic/glymphatic systems appear to be clogged!
Since this revelation, the LORD’s blessed me with the ability to start giving my lymphatic/glymphatic symptoms some help in the form of nutrients, minerals, and carbons to hopefully help things move and function the way He intended our bodies to in His design. Ultimately, my goal is to press on with a variety of detoxes to remove the unseen uglies from my insides. I’m only a couple weeks in, but I’m already noticing a difference. My down days are shorter; I’m able to bounce back more quickly and be able to function, again…and not just function, but actually have more energy to do things for longer. I actually went to two grocery stores BY MYSELF this week…IN THE SAME DAY!!! Granted, I came home and took a nap after each, and my family brought in the groceries, when I got home, and put them away, but that’s a HUGE step forward for me!! All praise to God for leading me on this healing journey of renewal!
Yesterday, I started dry brushing (Yeah! It’s a thing. If it’s new to you, you’re not alone! It’s new to me, too! Here are a couple videos you can watch, if you’re interested.). Dry brushing is just one of the things I’m beginning to try to help my lymphatic system drain better.
As I was enjoying this new routine, the Spirit of God brought to mind the need to give strength and renewal to other parts of my insides, as well…specifically, my heart and mind! I asked Him to show me where I’m “dead” or not functioning in a way that He prefers, so, with His guidance and help, these things can be removed and renewed, as well!
“One who conceals his wrongdoings will not prosper, but one who confesses and abandons them will find compassion.”Proverbs 28:13 NASB
“When I did not confess my sins, I was worn out from crying all day long. For day and night, Your hand [of displeasure] was heavy upon me; my energy (vitality, strength) was drained away as with the burning heat of summer. Selah. Then, I acknowledged my sin to You and did not conceal my iniquity. I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the LORD,’ and You took away the guilt of my sin. Selah.”Psalm 32:3 GNT, 4 AB, 5 HCSB
“Create for me a pure heart, O God! Renew a resolute spirit within me!”Psalm 51:10 NET
“Do not be conformed to this present world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may test and approve what is the will of God–what is good and well-pleasing and perfect.“Romans 12:2 NETB
I want to be clear. I’ve prayed concerning my health issues and am certain that they’re NOT related to a sin issue that God is desiring to clear up (not that I don’t have sin issues!)! I’m just reminded of the importance for us to really look at what’s inside…not only physically, but spiritually, as well. We need to identify the root cause of any issues (i.e., sin), exfoliate them and brush them off, leaving behind a renewed heart and mind that is able to test and approve what God’s will is. Isn’t that such a common question?!? “How do I know what God’s will is?” Well, from Romans 12:2, we can be sure that if we yield to or integrate what’s popular right now (and contrary to what God prefers) into our lives, we won’t know what His will is. We need to be up front with God, exposing our sin to Him, presenting it to Him, laying it down as a sacrifice, and turning away from it (Romans 12:1). Submitting to Him is part of the mind’s transformation process into the mind of Christ.
Praying for you all, Liv community! Feel free to comment at the top of this post or reply below, if you want me and others in the Liv community to be praying for anything specifically!
None of the products listed within this post have been used to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease; a drug is the only thing that can legally make this kind of claim, according to the FDA. What’s been shared in this post are my thoughts and opinions only, as I continue on this health journey.
Buying a home can be stressful, yet exciting! This was, again, evident, as I listened to a Kelly Minter pod cast (one of her Cultivate episodes) the other day; in that episode, she told a story about her aunt and uncle moving into town and needing to buy a house. Since Kelly already lived in town, she became the point person, working with their realtor on their behalf. At some point after the negotiations (our dog distracted me, then, so I lost that part of the story), the realtor suggested another walk-through. It’d been a while since Kelly’d bought her house, so she asked why another walk-through was necessary, since they’d already done one. The realtor shared the wisdom of making sure everything that was agreed upon was still in the house. As they walked through the house, sure enough, the refrigerator was gone!! Kelly related that to ourselves. Sometimes, we remember having compassion or kindness, joy or contentment, but we don’t often do a walk-through to make sure it’s still there.
We’re going to take a walk-through of our hearts and minds today…not exactly looking for the good things (to make sure they’re still there), but to see if anything that isn’t supposed to be there, as children of God, has been brought in.
As we examined last post, we have an opposer who’s seeking to destroy us, our reputations, God’s reputation, and our relationships.
I will pray over this, specifically, with you all!
Comment at the top or reply at the bottom of this page with how I can.
For years, we watched shows with our kids about animals, especially those in Africa. It was mesmerizing to watch the powerful lions, how they interacted, how the lionesses banded together to hunt their prey, and how the pride male (the king of the pride) controlled the uprising of the younger males. We’d watch as the lionesses camouflaged themselves in the grasses, eyeing a wildebeest herd very intently, identifying the calves or sickly animals; they were weaker, easier to take down, and quickly became a meal for the pride.
Most of us know this…but do we know the Greek word for “seek” in 1 Peter 5:8 means to seek by inquiring?!? The devil is investigating…searching…asking questions to find out if we’re weak and easy prey or if we’re strong in the LORD. Have you ever had questions randomly pop up in your mind…ones that induce doubt, fear, pain, anxiety,…? Can you take a guess where those inquiring questions are coming from? It’s nothing new. The devil started with Eve in the garden and is continuing the same kind of scheme today. How we respond (in actions and/or words) will tell him all he needs to know–if we’re weak…or strong in the LORD.
Many of you may be reading this and thinking, “I know this! I’m good! I haven’t fallen for that!” I truly hope that’s the case! May I ask you some questions, though? They’re ones I’m asking myself…AND my family…to be sure I/we don’t have “blood” running down my/our leg without knowing, we’re not walking with a “limp,” or are completely oblivious to Truth.
Today, we’re going to look at things that can be seen on the outside (we’ll look at things in the heart and mind next post). The Bible gives us a comprehensive list. I haven’t posted in a while, but this is what I’ve been picking apart with the Spirit, piece by piece, in its original language. If you don’t have time to fully ingest it all today, just absorb small morsels at a time, asking the Spirit of God to reveal any areas that need His healing. It’s worth giving our lives a detailed inspection.
Any of these prick a bit? He’s looking for an open door, a weak spot…someone he can gulp down entirely. I don’t want him to destroy you or me! I pray that if we, in any way, are standing opposite God, rather than with Him, “God will grant us repentance, so that [we] may know the Truth, and that [we] may come to [our] senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will” (2 Timothy 2:25-26 NKJV).
Just like wildebeests gather around an injured one to protect it from the hunting lionesses, I want to gather around each other, providing strength through the power of the Holy Spirit in prayer!
Has anyone else been tempted to get overwhelmed with their own discipling? There are so many things in these last two posts, and again in this one, that speak to me, as I want to disciple my kiddos well. If you feel overwhelmed at times, please hear this: Even focusing on one of these areas can improve your communication with your kids, can show them God, and can even change what your child thinks or believes. I’ve experienced it! So, close the door on that temptation and put your discipleship of Jesus in action with the kiddos…and they don’t have to be yours! Show these principles with those in your path today.
Ok. More notes from Dr. Kathy Koch’s Q & A session (her full speaking event can be found at the end of this post)…
Q & A–53:00 mark
I said I’d take her to the store that day to look for jeans. When it was nearing time to go, I checked in to make sure she’d gotten her homework and job done (some people call them “chores,” but we call them “jobs,” as chores sound loathing; everyone has a job to do). Nope; it wasn’t finished. It’s the parent’s right to change his or her plan, based on new information (or so I understood years ago from a book authored by a Christian psychologist). I wanted to teach my kiddo responsibility, so…plans changed; we didn’t go to the store.
My mindset got rocked a bit when I watched a Q & A session with Dr. Kathy Koch, which followed her talk titled “Secure Children’s Hearts to Unlock Their Potential” (I referred to this in the last post, which is worth checking out!). Parents were encouraged to follow through on our promises, even if something negative (like a job not being done) follows…It shows our kids unconditional love, like God’s, as well as faithfulness, rather than “love” based on behavior.
Below are more tips on discipling kiddos’ hearts from that Q & A session. These are just my notes…a snapshot, but I hope you’ll still be blessed (watch the video at the end of this post to catch Dr. Kathy’s full Q & A session!).
* “Correct” means “put wrong right.”
* “Criticize” means “point out wrong.”
There is SO MUCH here that I’ve been learning and re-learning…SO much I’m trying to marinate on and put into practice! One way is that I tend to fix it and then feel it; in fact, as I’m typing this, I’ve been called out on the timing of when I brought something up to one of my kiddos. Ouch. Point taken! Humility: the exercise of the day!…With the tips above heavy on my heart, I went into the kitchen, where my kiddo was, waited for the right moment, gently held both hands, and began to share how God has forgiven me numerous times for speaking out of anger; because He’s forgiven me, I’m choosing to forgive, too. Then, I asked for forgiveness for focusing more on what needed to be done than choosing a better time to address the issue…Walls of defense, frustration, anger? They all crumbled…visibly. Humility, forgiveness, truth? They, by God’s mercy, restored a beautiful connection.
I’m truly a work in progress! Thank you, LORD, for loving me enough to correct me!
Do any of these tips resonate with you? If so, which one(s)? I’d love to hear! Leave a comment at the top of this post or a reply at the bottom of the post.
Would you be courageous enough to share an example where God’s way brought about something beautiful?
If you have the time to take in the full Q & A session with Dr. Kathy, check it out below.
Q & A session begins at the 53:00 mark (it follows Dr. Kathy’s speech).