George: “Now, to find respite for my soul. I have a heavy task ahead, and my brother will no doubt make it as heavy as he dares.”
George: “Your best mead, barmaid! I have a long journey ahead.”
Barmaid: “It is best you order that, kind sir, what with that madman on loose.”
George: “Mad man, you say? What madman?”
Barmaid: “Well, I really don’t know what I’m saying, sir, I’m only a humble barmaid, but a day or more ago a young man was arrested for adultery with the woodcutter’s wife, there yonder. He’s said to be a rather unruly man, and a useless drunk. He was arrested by officer Kevin Mayburn and placed in jail.”
George: “Arrested, you say? What rotten luck! Poor fellow!”
Barmaid: “Indeed, kind sir. Now, you seek mead—shall I add to that order?”
George: “Only mead, barmaid.”
Act 1; Scene 4
Stranger: “I have walked for days and I have had no luck as of yet. What hole could this man be buried in?”
A wanderer crosses his path…
Stranger: “Fellow traveller!”
Wanderer: “Pardon, stranger? How may I assist you?”
Stranger: “Perchance, there is a town nearby?”
Wanderer: “There is a simple town a mere day’s travel from here. How long have you been lost in this desert, dear friend?”
Stranger: “It feels as though I have been walking in this wasteland since birth.”
Wanderer: “Ho! Is life not a wasteland in itself, friend? But, pray, tell me for what cause you find yourself in this place?”
Stranger: “I am in pursuit of a villain.”
Wanderer: “A villain! Nay, can’t be so!”
Stranger: “It is so, friend! He has abandoned his widowed mother and left her with nought to sustain herself.”
Wanderer: “Villain, he is! How could a son do such a thing to his tender mother? The woman who brought him into this world; yet bore him upon her knees! Villain!”
Stranger: “You see I have cause to pursue such a man.”
Wanderer: “Cause you have, my dear friend. Would that I could help you, but I myself am in pursuit of a villain of my own.”
Stranger: “Pray tell.”
Wanderer: “Nay. I shan’t; I have sworn an oath.”
Stranger: “A man’s word is his bond. You are an honourable man, friend.”
Wanderer: “And you an apt traveller. I see you have prepared for a long sojourn in this land.”
Stranger: “Only as long as need permit, but I do seek shelter in this wasteland.”
Wanderer: “Do not we all?”
Stranger: “Indeed. Do you know of a place where a traveller may rest his weary head?”
Wanderer: “You are heading towards the small town Merin. There you will find an inn. In such an inn ask for Lady Magdalin, she will attend to thee.”
Stranger: “Great thanks, friend! I will do as you say!”
Wanderer: “Good luck and may the winds of fate guide you to your destination!”
I have decided today that I would share a story that is not really well known. We all know the story of the great heroes of faith–Daniel, David, Moses, Joseph and so many more. These men were heralded as great heroes of faith and rightly so, but there is one more man that was also heralded, but we never think of him and gloss over his name. Well, today I have decided to tell his story. We are not glossing over him this time. His name was Barak and his companion was the Prophetess Deborah. Deborah is mentioned in Judges chapters 4 – 5. She was a married women as well as a judge to Israel. She is the only woman judge mentioned. Before you scream sexism, let me explain one simple fact about God–He has never belittled women in the Bible. It’s actually on the contrary, in Psalms He actually speaks of a virtuous woman and how important she is. In Jewish culture it is the woman who decides the religion of the child. He tells numerous stories of women in the Bible who were used of God. Tamar, Ruth, Mary, Rahab and many more women changed the lives of those they encountered and were mentioned in the lineage of Christ. In the very last chapter of the book of Job, Job leaves an inheritance for his daughters and mentions them by name. This was something that was unheard as the men inherited and the women were married off, but not for Job.
Deborah was no different than any of these women. God used her mightily and this is made very clear in Judge 4 – 5. So let’s dive right into their story.
Now, as Israel so often did, they were evil and sinful. Because of this God allowed them to be sold to a Gentile king by the name of Jabin. He had a vast and powerful army and the Israelites cried to God for help as this king treated them so horribly, It was during this time that we meet Deborah, a prophetess who judged Israel. She sat out in the open under a palm tree so that all could see her. Here we see her heart. She did nothing in secret and was a honourable woman. God reveals to her one day the pain of Israel and she calls for a man by the of Barak. Enter Barak and she says to him, “Hasn’t the God of Israel commanded you to gather an army of 10,000 from the Naphtali tribe and go on to mount Tabor? God has promised to go with you and fight for you. Now, I will go to the river of Kishon Sisera, and King Jabin’s captain and all his army I will deliver into your hand.” Barak after hearing all this, looked to Deborah and said, “I will only go if you come with me. If you don’t go, I won’t either.” She said to him, “Of course I will go with you. However, this battle will not be for you honour or glory. The Lord will deliver Sisera into the hand of a woman.” It was then that she got up and went with Barak. (Before I go further, let me mention something God has taught me here. Barak did not choose her because she was a woman or a prophetess, but because he knew God was with her and he needed to have her with him because of this) So Barak went a gathered an army from Kadesh and Naphtali of 10,000 men and Deborah went with him.
Now while Barak and Deborah were putting their plans in place, there was a man who had pitched his tent in Zaanaim near to Kedesh. He had completely severed all ties with his family and tribe, the Kenites. He went to Sisera and exposed where Barak’s was located. Sisera, in response, went and gathered his armies to head for Barak. Then something strange happened.
Deborah told Barak to go up. She told him that God would defeat the armies on Barak’s behalf and give him the victory. Barak then headed out with his army of 10,000. As promised, God delivered the army of Sisera to be defeated. Sisera jumped off his horse and ran for his life. He was pursued by Barak, but somehow managed to escape from him.
While running, he ran into the tent of Jael, a woman married to a Kenite. She invited him in and gave him milk to drink and covered him with her cloak. He asked her to keep watch by the tent door in case anyone should come passed. She remembered what he had asked her, “If anyone asks for me, you tell them I am not here.” Jael, however, had other plans. She took a tent peg (at that time it would’ve been a large metal nail) and a hammer, proceeding to nail it straight through his temple. He was so sound asleep, he didn’t even stir and right there he died. Like Sisera asked, she stood by the tent, keeping watch and when Barak and his army came passed she led him right to where Sisera lay dead, the nail still through his temple. Through this the Israelites had victory over not only Sisera and his armies, but also Jabin, Canaan’s king. After this, the Israelites were a prosperous nation.
And that is where our story ends. Here we see not one heroine, but two. Deborah and Jael both were led by God to work his perfect plan. Barak, too, was used by God.
This little bit of history demonstrates to us that if you allow God to work through you, He will grant, not just you, but everyone you touch with His words, victory. I hope that, as you read the story of Deborah, Jael and Barak, you will be inspired to be brave and take the world by storm. Nothing can stop you from touching the stars, if God is lifting you up to them.
If you continue onto the next chapter 5, you will see that after this great victory all Deborah and Barak did, for a whole chapter, was praise God. When God uses you, don’t forget to praise Him and let the whole world know what He has done just like Barak and Deborah.
I hope this boosts your Monday. Be bold. Be brave. Believe. That’s all you need to know.
God bless all of you, my precious avids. Have a lovely Monday😉📚
You guys have been amazing! Sharing my posts, commenting, starting your own threads on the forums! I have crossed over into 510 subscribers and it’s all thanks to you, my darling avids! I love all of you and trust we will continue this journey into the unknown together for many years to come! I started this blog in May and have already crossed the 500 mark! I couldn’t have done this without you! Just today I saw 29 new subscribers and every day this passed month I have been getting an average of 10/12 subscribers!
If there is anything you want me to write on, I will be creating a thread where you can post suggestions or topics you’d like me to look into. Without you I can’t keep writing. You are all my inspiration, my moving force!
As always, I pray God bless all of you wherever you are in the world!
I woke up this morning feeling quite sad and dejected, but I just have the best parents. They reminded me that whatever God does He does for a reason. They told me that I need to be positive and my mother read Philippians 4 with me. It was all about having faith and not being afraid, but praying. The devotional she shared said that when we worry or are having a really bad day, we need to pray to God every time we have a negative thought. The author said that even if you do it out loud, like a looney toon, it doesn’t matter. Do it every time.
I got a work phone call from a mom in complete frustration and distress. It really helped me realize that I wasn’t the only one feeling dejected. We are all equally uncertain, dejected and feeling so alone. So I decided I would post what my mom read read to me. I hope this uplifts you, it brought me to tears because sometimes I struggle to see the good in my life. My little Jack Russell is sitting on my lap and she just yawned the cutest yawn and I got the biggest kiss. We are all blessed in so many ways and I believe if we had to sit down and make a list of EVERYTHING that we’ve been blessed with, we’ll realize our lives are better than we thought.
Philipians 4: 5 – 23.
4. Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.
5 Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.
6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
We’ve all had those days when we wake up and we feel like nothing is working out–as though we were born for failure. Why was I even born? Just to screw up? Just to be unloved, unaccepted? Sometimes we just don’t even want to try anymore.
Can I tell you a secret? Even the most successful people have days when they wake up and they feel empty or uninspired to do anything. I, myself, prefer to look for my motivation in the one place I know I’ll find it. I look to the Bible, all throughout the pages of the Word of God are people who felt like we do. I woke up this morning and it was just the most frustrating and horrendous morning. I had just finished an article the day before that Ihated and I just felt like a failure. While hanging up laundry, a lightbulb went on and I knew what my next article should be. My source of motivation and the inspiration for my next article would come from the pages of My Father’s Living Word. So I looked at a man who lost EVERYTHING, but still knew where his comfort and salvation lay. His story is found in the Old Testament.
His name was Job and he was a very wealthy man who lived in the land of Ur. He had 7 sons and 3 daughters. He had 7,000 sheep, 3,000 camels, 500 yoke of oxen, and 500 she-asses. He also had a rather large household, that would include servants as well as family members. He was a righteous and upright man in the eyes of God. One day when all the angels came to present themselves before God,
Lucifer said “I have been all over this earth”
and God asked him “Have you noticed my servant Job? He is a good and righteous man.” Lucifer’s counter to this was that God had made him prosperous and that was why he served Him. He then went on to say that if God took all his wealth away he would turn on Him. So God said to him that he could take everything from Job, but that he shouldn’t harm him. In one day Job lost everything–his wealth and his family. All gone in the matter of one day. Job went into mourning for the loss of his children. Still, he refused to turn on God and praised Him rather saying that what he had God had given to him. Lucifer saw this and challenged God again saying that if his very flesh was touched with illness Job would turn on God. So again, God gave permission to harm his flesh only he was not allowed to take his life. So we see Job become struck with boils from the very top of his head all the way to the sole of his feet. In this condition, Job’s wife said to him, “Curse God and die!” Job would not and rebuked his wife for saying such a thing against God even calling her a “foolish woman”. Despite all that had happened Job still would not blamed God instead thinking he was the reason. Had he sinned? Throughout the rest of the book right up until Chapter 38, God is quiet in all Job’s bemoaning. Then God speaks and reminds Job that God is God and that He had made the very ground Job sat on. He then proceeds to ask Job a series of questions such as “Where were you when I made the very foundations of the earth?” and “Who provides for the raven his food?” After all these questions Job admits that he was wrong to doubt that God was all-powerful and Job just needs to trust in God’s plan. In the end of the book, we see Job is blessed doubly in all he had before. He had 7 more sons and 3 more daughters. God blessed him and exalted him. A man who had no motivation found it in God and God encouraged him by showing him that God was always there and that He is all Job ever needed.
Next we move to the New Testament. Now in this section of the Bible we are going to take a look at a man whose journey starts in the book of Acts chapter 9. A man by the name of Paul. Now Paul’s life did not begin as a man of God. He was a persecutor of God’s church. Paul was a witness at the martyring of Stephen. He went on to persecute the church, until one day God stopped him right in his tracks and asked him “Saul, Saul why are persecuting me?” Paul asks him, “Who are you, Lord?” and the Lord answered him, “I am Jesus whom you persecute. Why do you resist my pricking in your own heart?” Paul, understandably astonished, says, “Lord what would you have me do?” And from that moment on Paul went far and wide preaching to all the churches that he, himself, had been instrumental in scattering. People were scared at first not trusting this man who had killed so many of their fellow believers, but assured by God and Paul’s own testimony, he became a great messenger of God to the churches. His letters to the churches make up most of our New Testament, we call them ‘epistles’. However, Paul did not have a life of sunshine and roses. Paul experienced tons of rejection, in one town it was so bad that the church there lowered him through a window in a basket so he could get away before they killed him. He was shipwrecked a total of 3 times, beaten 3 times, stoned once, and spent a day and night at sea adrift. Yet, not once do you hear Paul accusing God, instead we see a man who carried on doing the work of His Saviour. If anyone had cause to be demotivated and discouraged, Paul would’ve probably been him.
Let me take us back into the Old Testament and just briefly discuss two major prophets: Jeremiah and Elijah. There are many more I could discuss, but these two are the most prominent. Jeremiah you will probably remember as the “Weeping Prophet” or the “Prophet of Doom”. Jeremiah had a very painful calling of God, yet he kept on as God had commanded him. God sent Jeremiah to Israel despite the fact that they wouldn’t listen and his ministry would be rejected. Now how’s that for motivation? Being told that what you’re doing is going to be of no purpose to the people it was supposed to be teaching. We, as children of God, can now look at the books of Jeremiah and Lamentations and see warnings and comfort from God, but for Jeremiah this was probably the hardest time of his life. He suffered greatly from depression, as did many of the prophets, which brings us to our next prophet, Elijah.
Elijah was the prophet that challenged the prophets of Baal. The challenge was whose god was real and whose god Israel would serve. Israel was on the fence, about which god to serve–Baal or the God of Israel? So, Elijah then presents a challenge to the prophets of Baal. The conditions were very simple: both were to prepare a sacrifice and the true god would send fire from heaven to burn up the sacrifice. You can read the whole event in 1 Kings 18: 20- 40. Suffice to say, as He always does and always will, God came through. Yet after this, Elijah runs into the desert to hide from the wicked queen Jezebel who was none to pleased that all her prophets had been killed. We find him in a cave bemoaning his lot, similar to Job. He says to God, “I am the only prophet alive in Israel.” and God’s reply is, “No, you are not there are 100 prophets of Israel hidden away.” All this time God sends food and drink to give Elijah the strength he would need to continue on the journey Elijah still had to take. God was’t finished working with Elijah.
I have only mentioned four of the thousands of prophets and teachers mentioned in the Bible, but as you can see, despite one day being on top of the world, they sunk to the bottom very quickly. It happens to everyone. We all need God’s strength and motivation to keep moving forward. It can be something you hear from a friend, a song, a message on the radio or a thousand other ways.
I started this blog feeling so demotivated, but now I feel motivated to keep writing. Simply walking through the Scriptures has reminded me that no matter how sad or demotivated I feel, the only source of inspiration I will ever need is my God.
God bless you and keep you motivated, my avidReaders.