Valuing The Human

An innocent little six year old was mercilessly gunned down by someone in a fit of road rage recently.

I wondered how was this possible?

The Lord led me to the story of Cain and Abel in the book of Genesis.

Cain and Abel were two brothers, the children of Eve, “the mother of all the living.”

When her first son was born, Eve called him “Cain,” a name related to a word for “lament” or “wail.” Eve said, “I have gotten a man from the Lord…”

“…man” meaning:

אישׁ ‘ı̂ysh

BDB Definition: 11b) husband, 1c) human being, person (in contrast to God), 1f) champion, 1g) great man

The Bible says of Cain that he “…was a tiller of the ground.”

The word for tiller means: H5647 (Strong)

עָבַד

‛âbad, aw-bad’, A primitive root; to work (in any sense); by implication to serve, till, (causatively) enslave, etc.: be, keep in bondage, be bondmen, bond-service, compel, husbandman, keep, labour (-ing man), (be, become) servant (-s), transgress [from margin], (set a) work, be wrought, worshipper.Serve self

Where Eve seemed so filled with hope after Cain’s birth giving him a name that meant “Champion,” she seemed to have lost her faith sometime after his birth.

For she named her second son Abel which means:

הבל hâbal

BDB Definition: 1) to act emptily, become vain, be vain; 1a2) to be utterly vain;1b1) to cause to become vain; 1b2) to fill with vain hopes;

People who have lost their dream call faith “vain hope.”

Also, branding a child with such a name is akin to calling them hopeless, futile, or vanity.

It would not be any wonder then that Abel would find refuge out in the fields with his Father God while tending the sheep rather than with a family who considered him “… filled with vain hopes.”

Abel was given the name of someone whom his parents saw as having no expectations.

And this was surely to open the door for his brother to also adopt the same attitudes toward him as someone who was worthless.

It might not be difficult for a man to murder a brother whom he neither loved nor valued. For Cain had no love for his brother the Bible says.

“This is the teaching you have heard from the beginning: We must love each other. Don’t be like Cain. He belonged to the Evil One. Cain killed his brother. But why did he kill him? Because what Cain did was evil, and what his brother did was good.” 1 John 3:11-12 – ERV

Cain and Abel both offered sacrifices to God. But Abel offered a better sacrifice to God because he had faith. God said he was pleased with what Abel offered. And so God called him a good man because he had faith. Abel died, but through his faith he is still speaking.” ~ Hebrews 11:4 – ERV

After Cain had killed his brother, the Lord asked him where Abel was. Cain sarcastically replied, “I don’t know, am I my brother’s keeper?”

Keeper means:

שׁמר shâmar

BDB Definition: 1) to keep, guard, observe, give heed/ 2) 1a1) to keep, have charge of/ 3) 1a2) to keep, guard, keep watch and ward, protect, save life/ 1a3) to watch for, wait for/ 1a4) to watch, observe/ 1a5) to keep, retain, treasure up (in memory)/1a6) to keep (within bounds), restrain/ 1a7) to observe, celebrate, keep (sabbath or covenant or commands), perform (vow)/ 1a8) to keep, preserve, protect/ 1b1) to be on one’s guard, take heed, take care, beware/ 1b2) to keep oneself, refrain,/ abstain/ 1b3) to be kept, be guarded

God revealed through the Lord Jesus Christ that we are indeed to be our brother’s keeper. We are to love and to lay our lives down for one another.

Abel was asked to sacrifice His will to God even as Christ would one day be asked to sacrifice His will to the Father that all might in Him be given eternal life through His sacrificial death.

Abel gave God what He asked of him. This pleased the Lord greatly.

For Abel like Christ in effect had said, “Father I want Thy will not my will…”

How did Abel know what God’s will was?

He spent all his time with the Lord every day in a close relationship with Him.

While working in the fields he was abiding in His Maker. He listened to God speak to his heart.

God wanted something that was difficult for Abel to give Him. Something that Abel loved, prized, and valued very much. The finest of his flocks.

Yet, what else was worth having if he kept it back from God and lost his intimacy with the Lord by withholding that thing which God had asked him to sacrifice?

What could be more important than his relationship with the Lord, his Creator?

Abel knew what God required of him, he knew and cared to do God’s will.

The Bible says that the ungodly don’t care to know about or to do God’s will. They just want to please themselves.

‘“At harvest time, Cain brought a gift to the Lord. He brought some of the food that he grew from the ground, but Abel brought some animals from his flock. He chose some of his best sheep and brought the best parts from them. The Lord accepted Abel and his gift.But He did not accept Cain and his offering. Cain was sad because of this and he became very angry.” ~ Genesis 4:3-5 ERV

Cain offered to God the sacrifice of man; the sacrifice that insists on doing its own will and pleasure. Such a sacrifice may take a lot of time and effort to accomplish, and appear beautiful but it will not satisfy our Creator if it is not what He asked for.

God’s will is that we obey Him no matter what that obedience looks like, no matter how displeasing to us it seems. The Lord needs to know that His will matters to us more than our own our own will.

He created us to worship HIM. We were not created to please and worship ourselves.

Abel obeyed the Lord and offered the blood sacrifice He required. Cain did not.

Hebrews 9 explains that under the Law that without the shedding of blood there was no forgiveness of sins. A blood sacrifice was required for the atonement of the sins people had committed. That was just how it was. We may not like it or understand it. But that was why Jesus Christ, God’s Son had to die to shed His spotless blood for the sins of all humanity to redeem us and put a fallen world back in right relationship with God. This is the truth. Cain refused to believe this truth of the need for the blood sacrifice to atone for his sins to be made right with God. He would do his own work and labor to please and satisfy God. Yet, God only wanted the sacrifice of an innocent pure lamb to atone for the man’s sins. He need only go to his brother and procure a sheep to sacrifice to the Lord. It was that easy. Cain made things hard in his unbelief.

Cain was furious when he saw that God was pleased with Abel’s sacrifice and not with his own.

The Lord asked Cain, “Why are you angry? Why does your face look sad? You know that if you do what is right, I will accept you. But if you don’t, sin is ready to attack you. That sin will want to control you, but you must control it.”~ Genesis 4:6-7 – ERV

God up and told Cain His will and the man simply ignored the holy revelation! It went right over Cain’s head because he had no regard for the Lord any more than he valued his brother’s life.

If he had loved and feared the Lord then he would have obeyed Him. Christ equated love for our Lord with our obedience to Him.

Jesus said to His disciples: “If you love Me, you will do what I command.

Those who really love Me are the ones who not only know My commands but also obey them. My Father will love such people, and I will love them. I will make Myself known to them.”

…All who love Me will obey My teaching. My Father will love them. My Father and I will come to them and live with them.

But anyone who does not love Me does not obey My teaching. This teaching that you hear is not really Mine. It is from my Father who sent Me.” ~ John 14:15,21,23-24 – ERV

The rest of the story is a very sad one.

Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.” So they went to the field. Then Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him. Later, the Lord said to Cain, “Where is your brother Abel?”

Cain answered, “I don’t know. Is it my job to watch over my brother?”

Then the Lord said, “What have you done? You killed your brother and the ground opened up to take his blood from your hands. Now his blood is shouting to Me from the ground.So you will be cursed from this ground. Now when you work the soil, the ground will not help your plants grow. You will not have a home in this land. You will wander from place to place.”~Genesis 4:8-10,12 – ERV

The price Cain paid for his sin was enormous. Cain’s former gift of being able to till the soil successfully became a curse as God said, “Now when you work the soil, the ground will not help your plants grow.

Whereas Cain had been the family’s hope for success and prosperity, “their champion,” he now became the disappointment, the one who was truly filled with “vain hopes;”one who could no longer produce. The Lord not only took away all former expectations of success, but also drove him away, branding him with the indelible mark of a murderer, condemning him to the life of a wanderer. (*See Genesis 4:13-16)

Have we ever stopped to think of what we give up when we ignore the Lord’s voice, giving in to our stubbornness, anger, own desires, and lack of faith over simply obeying the Lord’s will?

First we must like Abel abide in Christ to love God and to know His will.

Second we must care to obey His will once He reveals that will to us.

If we don’t love others, we won’t love, honor and value our God. When we do not love and value others we disobey God’s will.

Christ said, “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye have love one to another.” John 13:34-35 – KJV

Jesus once told a religious ruler that the two greatest commandments upon which hung the whole Law were the first two: Jesus said unto him, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment.

And the second is like unto it, “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” ~ Matthew 22:37-40 – KJV

The Apostle John wrote, “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? And this commandment have we from Him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.” 1 John 4:20-21 – KJV

In the parable of the Good Samaritan Jesus let us know that in God’s eyes, everyone is our brother and sister. Not just people in our religious affiliations, our fellowships and social cliques. The Lord does not see as we see according to the teaching Christ gave us in that parable.

As I contemplated the enraged man who’d gunned down the innocent child on the freeway, I couldn’t help but wonder if he, like Cain, had lost his love and value for human life made in God’s holy image ~that life of which God says we are to be his keeper, his guardian, and to keep ourselves from harming.

Would that people knew God’s will and would do it!

Then I thought are we not too like that furious man when we explode like a seething time bomb with bitter words; words like lethal verbal weapons, over everything under the sun, ever finding fault, seeking to destroy with bitter criticism, accusation, and judgment, ever so quick to assume false conclusions without having all the facts? The internet and social media are daily inundated with these incidents of “virtual road rage.”

And if we regard not the life of our neighbor, resisting God’s will to be our brother’s and sister’s keeper, we absolutely do not love, fear, nor honor God our Heavenly Father, the Bible declares. (*See 1 John 4:20-21)

Jesus said, “…the bad things people say with their mouth come from the way they think. And that’s what can make people wrong. All these bad things begin in the mind: evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual sins, stealing, lying, and insulting people. These are the things that make people wrong.” Matthew 15:18-20 – ERV

“Heavenly Father, may You give us Thy divine love for one another, that we may also love and honor Thee, in Jesus’ name, amen.

Click to listen to this Piano Solo by Suzanne Davis Harden
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
~ Cain Had No Love © (p) 2019 All Rights Reserved.

Peaceangelsong, Text & Digital Scripture Paintings, Copyright © 2021 by Suzanne Davis Harden, through the Risen Lord Jesus Christ, Inspired by the Holy Spirit, All Rights Reserved. Scripture References taken from various translations: ERV (Easy To Read Version Bible) Copyright © 2006 Bible League International; The King James Version Bible, Public Domain; Strongs Bible Concordance, Public Domain

Nevertheless, Said Jesus

Prayer Poem~Nevertheless, Said Jesus

Encouraging Scriptures

Jesus Christ said, “But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be…

Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.

But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.

Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.” Matthew 24:37-44 KJV

The Days Of Noah ~Genesis 6:5-12

And GOD saw that the wickedness of man

was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the LORD that He had made man on the earth, and it grieved Him at His heart.

And the LORD said, “I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.”

But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.

These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, And Noah walked with God.

And Noah begat three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.

The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence. And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.” Genesis 6:5-12 KJV

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Jesus Christ said, “Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?” Luke 18:8 KJV

Enoch was carried away from this earth, so he never died.

The Scriptures tell us that before he was carried off, he was a man who pleased God.

Later, no one knew where he was, because God had taken Enoch to be with Him.

This all happened because he had faith. Without faith no one can please God.

Whoever comes to God must believe that He is real and that He rewards those who sincerely try to find Him.

Noah was warned by God about things that he could not yet see. But he had faith and respect for God, so he built a large boat to save his family.

With his faith, Noah showed that the world was wrong. And he became one of those who are made right with God through faith.”

Hebrews 11:5-7 ERV

MORE ENCOURAGING SCRIPTURES

For yet in a very little while, the Coming One will come and not delay. But My righteous one will live by faith; and if he draws back, I have no pleasure in him. But we are not those who draw back and are destroyed, but those who have faith and are saved.” Hebrews 10:37-39 CSB

Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you.

For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions.

These are not from the Father, but are from this world. And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave.

But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever.” 1 John 2:15-17 NLT

Jesus Christ said, “And when he had called the people unto Him with his disciples also, He said unto them, “Whosoever will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.

For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for My sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it.

For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?

Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of Me and of My words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when He cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.” ~ Mark 8:34-38 KJV

Paul the Apostle wrote, “For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on Him shall not be ashamed.” Romans 10:11 KJV

Some Bibles translate this verse as they shall not be put to shame. But the sense of the original word is that the author meant the person who puts their trust in Jesus would not be ashamed, embarrassed to believe in Him, or confounded and sorry that they trusted in the Lord. It can be read both ways.

Just as Jesus said, His disciples would not be ashamed of Him or His words because they would know that would make their Master ashamed of them.

If a soul really has faith that Jesus was raised from the dead and lives inside of them they will not be ashamed to confess this Paul said in Romans 10.

“…that if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.” Romans 10:9-11 KJV

It is when we stop confessing our faith that we not only lose it, but we also lose our love for Christ and our fear of God.

We are in danger of becoming mere professors crying “Lord Lord,” doing many good works perhaps but maybe none of them God’s will, not one truly motivated by His Holy Spirit but by man. (See Matthew 7:21-23)

We will have no true love for the Lord nor belief in Him, for we will love and lust after the world more than we love and worship the One who died to save us from our sins.

It is then that we should meditate on Psalm 36:1-4 and pray earnestly in our prayer closets and seek The Lord with all our heart with fear and trembling. (See Isaiah 55:6-8)

That is why Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 13: “Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves.” 2 Corinthians 13:5 KJV

For Meditation and Reflection:

Do we care more about what other people think of us than what the Lord might think of us?

Who’s opinion of us matters to us the most?

This tells us a whole lot about how much faith we really have in the living Lord Jesus Christ.

If we truly believed He is real we would tremble to care more what other people thought than what the God who upholds the universe by the word of His power thinks about us.

If we really believed that the Father and Christ have the power to not only destroy the body but cast our spirit and soul in hell for eternity, then would we not fear and respect and honor them?

Jesus said, “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear Him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” ~ Matthew 10:28 KJV

Grace can be trampled on and Christ recrucified according to the book of Hebrews in chapter 6.

“For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, and have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, if they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put Him to an open shame.” Hebrews 6:4-6 KJV

2 Peter 2 alludes to the Christian who loses his salvation comparing them to a dog who returns to its vomit.

For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.

For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.

But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.” ~ 2 Peter 2:20-22 KJV

Hebrews 10 talks about those who lose their blood sacrifice Christ made for them by negating it.

For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.

He that despised Moses’ law died without mercy under two or three witnesses: of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?

For we know Him that hath said, “Vengeance belongeth unto Me, I will recompense,” saith the Lord.

And again, “The Lord shall judge His people.”

It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.”Hebrews 10:26-31 KJV

I did not make these scriptures up.

There are bible teachers who reinterpret them to fit their denominational systems.

However, the apostles repeatedly said to hold on to what you have been taught from the beginning.

And these are the teachings that have been handed down from the beginning.

Jesus said that he who endures to the end shall be saved.

He said that the way of life is narrow and that few there be that find it. But broad is the way that leads to destruction and many there be that would go in that way.

Salvation is not a done deal once a soul commits their heart to Christ.

Just ask Judas.

Jesus said to the disciples at the last supper “One of you is about to betray Me. It would be better for that soul if he had not been born.” Then the disciples each asked if he were the one.

Even Judas dared to ask since all the others were asking. If we come to Jesus wanting a revelation He will give us the answer. Jesus told Judas it was him. But it did not stop him from committing his sin. Even though Jesus had plainly stated that it would have been better for that soul if he would not have been born rather than to betray Him. Unbelief is at the core of every sin against Christ.

Judas went out and committed his fatal sin against the Lord anyway. He betrayed the Lord for thirty pieces of silver. (See Matthew 26:14-16; 20-25,)

One cannot worship idols and God too. Jesus pointed this out in Matthew 6.

No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” (*Mammon can be anything including money that we love more than God) Matthew 6:24 KJV

One either loves Christ or the god of this world. Christ knows every heart. The Lord wants each heart that professes to love Him to seek Him in their prayer closet, apart from social media.

That along with anything else that distracts our mind away from the Lord, is not holy.

He wants us to set ourselves apart unto Him.

Holy means set apart.

Christ will tolerate no idols.

Please don’t take my word for it. Go in to your prayer closet and pray and seek Christ without distractions.

Meditate on the Word of God without the constant interruption and intrusion of the internet or social media, work, hobbies, or anything that takes your mind or interest away from the Lord.

Jesus said, ““My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me: and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand.” ~ John 10:27-28 KJV

Those who really want to come back to Christ will listen and hear Him speaking in this message to them.

They will recognize the voice of their Good Shepherd. For they belong to Jesus and are His true sheep. Jesus said the voice of a stranger they would not follow.

But Jesus said that those who do not believe and who have no faith, do not belong to Him. Those who are His want above all else to please Christ and do His will.

Jesus told the Pharisees who kept questioning Him despite all of the amazing miracles they saw that witnessed to His deity:

“…I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me. But ye believe not, because ye are not of My sheep, as I said unto you.” John 10:25-26 KJV

Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. For He hath made Him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.”~ 2 Corinthians 5:20-21 KJV

“Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith, “To day if ye will hear His voice, Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, In the day of temptation in the wilderness: When your fathers tempted Me, proved Me, And saw My works forty years.

“Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do alway err in their heart; And they have not known My ways. So I sware in my wrath, They shall not enter into my rest.) “

Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.

But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.

For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end;

While it is said, “To day if ye will hear His voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation.

For some, when they had heard, did provoke: howbeit not all that came out of Egypt by Moses.

But with whom was He grieved forty years? Was it not with them that had sinned, whose carcases fell in the wilderness?

And to whom sware He that they should not enter into His rest, but to them that believed not?

So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.”
‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭3:7-19‬ ‭KJV‬‬

Love

“And this commandment have we from Him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.” ~ 1 John 4:21 KJV

Love each other,” Jesus said,
“By this they all shall know,
That You are Mine, and in thy heart
I have made My home.”

Love each other,” Jesus said,
“This is My command,
You show the world you love Me
When you do the things I ask.”

Jesus said who loves Him
Will obey His word
The one who doesn’t love Him
Dishonors their neighbor…

For there are two commandments
The greatest one of all
Is to love with all thy heart
And soul the Most High God,
The second one He said,
Is love thy neighbor too,
As you love thy very self
To them so you must do.

Whatsoever you shall do
Unto the least of these,”
Said Jesus in a parable,
“Ye do it unto Me.”

In Jesus’ name,
Amen.

(Prayer Poem) All Glory To God, Copyright © 2020, Suzanne Davis Harden, All Rights Reserved.

Scriptures For Meditation

A religious leader asked Jesus, “Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
Jesus said unto him, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart,
and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.’
This is the first and great commandment.
And the second is like unto it,
‘Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.’
On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”
Matthew 22:36-40 KJV

“And the King shall answer and say unto them,
“Verily I say unto you,
“Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”
Matthew 25:40 KJV

“He that hath My commandments,
and keepeth them,
he it is that loveth Me:
and he that loveth Me
shall be loved of My Father,
and I will love him,
and will manifest Myself to him.

Jesus answered and said unto him,
“If a man love Me, he will keep My words:
and My Father will love him,
and We will come unto him,
and make Our abode with him.

He that loveth Me not
keepeth not My sayings:
and the word which ye hear is not Mine,
but the Father’s which sent Me.”
John 14:21, 23-24 KJV

Jesus said, “This is My commandment,
That ye love one another,
as I have loved you.
Greater love hath no man than this,
that a man lay down his life for his friends.
Ye are My friends,
if ye do whatsoever I command you.”
John 15:12-14 KJV

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Peaceangelsong Love Prayerpoem & Scripture Collage Painting, Copyright © 2020 by Suzanne Davis Harden, All Rights Reserved.

WHERE ANGELS DANCE

PRAISE-YE-THE-LORD
Praise Ye The Lord

 

If someone had said to me back in 2008 that in the next nine years I would publish nineteen music albums of original music I would have told them that they were insane.

Yet unbelievably I have just published my nineteenth music album.

“Where Angels Dance,” features vibrant worship instrumentals that were all inspired by the Holy Spirit.

Music was never one of my gifts growing up, nor did I ever want anything to do with any of the performance arts.

I was passionate about Art. I never sat down without a pen and sketchpad.

I had taught art, worked as a freelance artist, written and illustrated my own books, and earned my college degree in art & writing. I was certain that God had called me to be a children’s book author and Illustrator.

One day I fell asleep after taking my dog for a walk.

I dreamed I went to Heaven.

There I saw angels and saints dancing before Christ’s Throne.

They were joyfully worshiping the Lord.

Beautiful music was playing in the background as they danced.

When I awoke from my dream, the music was echoing in my mind.

The Lord spoke to my heart, “You can play that song.”

The keyboard that my sister had given us was in front of me.

I felt compelled to try even though there was no reason I should have any hopes of playing that beautiful song from my dream.

Except that the Lord had said I could. And if God said I could, it must be true since He can’t lie.

But what if I was just imagining that God said it?

The only way to find out would be to try…

I sat down and played that song. It was amazing but somehow, I just knew how to do it.

My version wasn’t as lovely as what I had heard in the dream, but it sounded similar.

When the Lord taught me how to play the piano, it was purely by faith. All He asked of me was that I believed His word to me, “You can play that song.”

After I played that one song, He said, “From now on you can play any song I teach you. Just believe.”

“He spoke and it was done, He commanded and it stood fast.” Psalm 33:9

Though I had never wanted to be a musician before, suddenly, I loved worshiping God with this beautiful new gift.

Then the Lord asked me to SHARE the praise music He’d taught me to play.

I froze. It was one thing to play these songs that sounded amazing to me just for the Lord in my worship time, but quite another to make them public.

FEAR & DOUBT reared their ugly heads and whispered, “You know absolutely nothing! These songs only sound good to you because you don’t know anything at all about music. You are only an artist, you aren’t really a musician. No one will listen to this music from God and everyone will make fun of you.”

It was then that I decided, “Maybe the Lord wants me to take piano lessons.”

However, after going through three piano teachers and never being able to quite finish even one beginner book because reading notes was such a challenge for me, I finally realized it was not what the Lord wanted for me.

 “For we walk by faith and not by sight.” (2 Corinthians 5:7)

One teacher looked at a printed musical score from an original composition from the Lord and just shook her head, mystified. “This is way beyond you.”

“But I created it, I mean, God created it through me,” I said.

One great thing did come of my piano lessons though. I loved learning the music scales! Somehow that is the one thing that I could master and the Lord helped me use this knowledge to compose many prayer songs.

Yet my music from the Lord sounded very different from other contemporary Christian music.

I had to come to terms with the fact that its true Creator, the risen Lord Jesus Christ who lives in my heart, was composing His music through me just the way He wanted it.

I had to trust Him that it was good enough.

This was going to take a significant leap of faith and courage.

When I had been working as a professional artist, I would never submit anything unless it rose to my “perfectionist” standards.

To me, my piano prayers were a beautiful gift from the Lord that I played back to Him in worship. They did not have to measure up to any human standard of musical taste or preference for I knew that Jesus had made them, loved them, and accepted them.

Now the Lord was asking me to share His songs with the public who did measure its music to a standard. I had no idea what those musical standards or preferences were. I had absolutely no musical knowledge. It was not something the Lord told me to study or learn about. He just asked me to play His songs~then share them.

“Oh Lord, I’m just an artist, not a real musician. Do You really want me to share Your songs?”

Suddenly I realized I could say, “Yes or no, Lord,” to His beautiful gift.

But then, He had laid down His life for me. He had said to His Father when faced with a humiliating, agonizing death on the cross just to bear all my sins, to be made a curse for me so that I might have eternal life with Him, “Father, not My will but Thy will.”

He knew people would make fun of Him, scorn Him, reject Him, that He would even have to face the cold dark waters of death, the stench of hell where His beloved Father, from whom He had never been separated could not come. He faced all of this to pay the ransom for my soul.

How could I, if I truly loved my Savior, not lay down my life, my will for Him? How could I not share His songs, come what may?

True love lays down its life for Jesus.

I realized then, it’s not about me, or my will, but what God wants to do through me, even if I end up looking like a fool.

Love obeys her Lord and Savior no matter what He asks her to do for Him.

The most amazing thing I’ve learned through this experience is that God would choose an ordinary sinful woman like me, saved only by the almighty grace of her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and say, “Here is a gift. All you need to do is receive it by faith.”

Just like the gift of salvation He offers each of us in Christ.

And then it terrified me that He would take that same ordinary Christian woman, and say, “Now use that gift for My glory!”

I’m not perfect, far from it, nor is any of my music.

But God uses imperfect vessels.

God up and turned me into a musician for HIS glory-not mine.

He put in me a gift I knew absolutely NOTHING about.

How I thank the Lord for the way He has used the gift of music to lovingly humble me in all of my other gifts.

“God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us.” Ephesians 3:20-21(The Message Bible)

Most of the music the Lord gives me is inspired by the Bible.

The songs all begin as prayers, and I will praise the Lord forever for giving me this wonderful way to worship Him.

This music is very special for it truly is a gift from God. It never ceases to amaze and humble me how He plays His music through me.

My fervent prayer is that many people  will be  blessed and encouraged by this gift of God’s music. For all of the songs are essentially prayers ascending to heaven in a musical form breathed into life by the God who lives in me.

PRAYER

Heavenly Father, may You use this music and story to bless and encourage someone today to step out in faith to trust You and believe that with God all things are truly possible, and that when we walk by faith, we honor and glorify You, even as Abraham did so long ago, who, “staggered not at the promises of God…” Thank You, Lord, In Jesus name, amen.

 

He Staggered Not