You have probably noticed I’ve been very quiet lately on all my platforms. Work has gone nuts and I have not had a single moment’s rest from it. I have not forgotten about all of you and have been longing to write another article for you. I am having such fun writing about all these men and women of Christ and have decided that the perfect person for today’s Bible character is Martha. If any of you went to Sunday school you will probably have heard of her, but, if not, allow me to elaborate.
Martha’s story can be found in Luke 10:38 – 41 as well as another story about her brother Lazarus found in John 11.
Martha’s story fits so well with my current state that I thought I’d have another look at her story. Now Martha was a woman who was constantly busy with something. She sounds like most of us doesn’t she? Often times we get so busy with our lives–wrapped up in life’s problems.
Jesus was visiting their house and he found that Martha was so caught up in her daily grind. She was serving the visitors and running the kitchen on her own. She became upset and asked Jesus to tell her sister, Mary, to help her. Jesus smiled at her and said, “Martha, Martha. You are so busy with all your chores that you have lost sight of what is important, but your sister, Mary, has kept her focus on what truly matters.”
You see between the two women there was a different outlook on life. Martha only saw all the work she had to complete while Mary kept her eyes on Jesus. At the end of the day, whether you decide, or have already decided, to serve Jesus the fact remains that life is far too valuable to be bogged down by things that don’t really matter. At the end of your life nothing you did while on earth will matter, but the testimony you leave behind will. The people you love will remember you, not your job. They will remember your smile, your laugh, your character. All the wealth you gather won’t make you happy, but the adventures you have, the people you spend your time with–they will make you happy.
This is a short story but it is very poignant for today’s life. We are far too busy working to have a good life that we can’t HAVE a good life. I really give it to people who go wireless and take some time to just enjoy the simple things in life. The simple things matters the worst. Perhaps we should all take some time away from our devices? That sounds like a very good idea if I’m being honest. This year over December make a rule that at all family gatherings you put your phone away and don’t talk about work AT ALL. I am going to be doing the same thing.
I wish you all a great week and if there are any highschoolers or teachers reading this–enjoy your early leave. I miss my holidays as a teacher.
Before I get into this story, I want to state a simple fact: no matter who you are, you can change someone’s life. If bad things happen to you, take the pain and use it to help someone else. Whether you are in the throngs of depression, the trap of fear and anxiety, have suffered loss or are fighting an incurable disease with all you have in you, God CAN use you and He WILL if you let him.
Our story is about a mighty captain in the Syrian army by the name of Naaman. God had used him to defeat the Israelite army. He was an honourable man, but he suffered a horrendous disease. Naaman had leprosy. He was what the Israelites called unclean and it so happened that during one of their invasions Naaman captured a little girl and gave her to his wife as a maid. She was only a little girl–or so Naaman thought, but was he wrong. Naaman’s wife lamented the state of her husband. During one of these she must’ve told this little girl. This little girl felt so sad for her lord and mistress that she said to her,
“I wish my lord was with the prophet of God that lives in Samaria. He would cure him of his leprosy.” and someone overheard this and went straight to the king of Syria saying, “There is a prophet in Samaria who can cure my lord Naaman!” The king immediately sent a letter to the king of Israel and told him what happened as well as gifts to show goodwill. The Syrian king asked that this prophet cure Naaman and informed the king of Israel that he would be sending Naaman.
The king of Israel started panicking. He tore his clothes and started to rant, “Am I God? How am I supposed to cure this man?! The king of Syria is looking for an excuse to go to war with me!”
Elisha heard this and sent a messenger to the king saying, “What’s happening? Why are you tearing your clothes? Send the man to me and he will see the power of the God of Israel.” At ease, the king agreed and sent Naaman to Elisha. When Naaman came to the house of Elisha, Elisha sent a messenger out to tell Naaman, “Go wash yourself 7 times in the Jordan River and you will be cured of your leprosy.” Now Naaman looked at the Jordan River and said, “Where is your master? Can’t he even greet a man?! He sends a servant to tell me what to do!” Naaman was expecting some kind of thunder and lightning or perhaps fanfare, instead he got a simple servant telling him to go wash in a river. If that worked he would’ve done it ages ago! Who did this prophet think he was? He was beginning to doubt this little maid that had spoken with his wife.
“Are you telling me the rivers of Damascus, Arbana and Pharphar, aren’t better than this filthy river in Israel? Why can’t I just go wash in them?” Naaman was infuriated, but his men loved him and pleaded with him saying, “Master, if you were told to do some great act wouldn’t you do it, why not listen to the prophet and go wash yourself 7 times in the Jordan?”
Naaman saw the love his men had for him and obeyed. He dipped himself 7 times in the Jordan and when he came out he was spotless. He was clean and pure like a child’s skin. He was overjoyed to be cured of the wretched disease and went to the prophet offering him all sorts of gifts as thanks for the miracle. The prophet, Elisha, told him he shouldn’t thank him because God had cured Naaman not Elisha. So Naaman went on his way, no doubt thinking of that little servant girl and her people’s prophet. The Bible doesn’t mention what happens to her, but it needn’t. You see, it wasn’t about her or Elisha. The story was about Naaman.
Naaman is all of us. We all need to be cleaned by God’s cleansing water. When Jesus came to earth knowing fully well what would happen. He didn’t come down with fanfare and light shining from Heaven, instead He came down as the worthless child of a carpenter–a nobody. Jesus was just like the Jordan River–on the surface he didn’t look handsome or have anything that made people want to flock to Him. However, just like the Jordan, the people who were cleansed by Him were cured of their sin(leprosy). Even as He hung on that cross, He had love and forgiveness in his heart.
Today, if you feel like Naaman–hiding your sin under a think suit of armour–come to God. The Bible says that every time a soul turns to God angels sing in Heaven. I hope this encourages you. I love this story. It’s gorgeous.
Have a great week. I’ve been so busy, I’m pretty sure I’m like a dead body on my platforms. Sorry for that. Next week, I should be back up and ready to post more for you.
Wish me luck. God bless all of you, my precious avids!🥰😇
I don’t know if you ever heard of the story of Lot? It’s a cautionary tale that is often referred to warn of the punishment of sin. If we take a look into Lot’s history we find that Lot was travelling in Canaan with his uncle Abram (later referred to as the famous Abraham) and there was a dispute between the servants of Lot and those of Abram. This caused them to split up. Lot chose to stay in the rich fertile land near the city of Sodom and Gomorrah and Abram moved to the barren lands on the opposite side. God blessed Abram abundantly and Lot prospered where he was, but Lot had no idea what the future held for him. God was use him as a witness as one of the most violent miracles recorded.
So what happened to Lot? The Bible gives us quite an apt description. It says, “And righteous Lot vexed his soul daily.” This phrase in the context is referring to the sin that was happening in the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. God saw what was going in those two cities and He saw Lot was righteous. God proceeded to send two “messengers of God”, as the Bible says, to Lot. Lot made the messengers comfortable, gave them something to drink, something to eat and then sat down to talk with them. This would not be as simple as it seemed, because the men in the city wanted Lot to give them these men that God had sent and Lot refused. He pleaded with them and even tried to negotiate with them, but they would not listen. These messengers of God pulled Lot back into the house, shut the door and then proceeded to blind the men of the city. These men had told Lot who they were and Who had sent them and Lot listened intently, knowing God was about to speak. “Lot,” they began, “The Lord God has cursed these cities and He will destroy them with fire and everyone in them, except for you, Lot.” Lot was terrified, but what Lot didn’t know was that his uncle Abram had already pleaded for God to spare the righteous men in that city. You can find this conversation in Genesis 18v23-32. God saw that Lot was scared and the messengers said to him, “Do not be afraid. Pack up your house, your wife, your two daughters and leave. God is going send fire from heaven and completely burn up these cities because of their wickedness. Leave and do not even look behind you. JUST RUN!” Lot was dumbstruck–God was going to destroy two cities. His wife, two daughters and himself would be the only survivors of so many people. The two messengers saw that Lot was taking too long and they grabbed his hand, his wife’s hand and his two daughter’s hands and rushed them out of the city before they were destroyed with it. Now God told Lot to escape to the mountains so that he wouldn’t be destroyed, but Lot was scared that something would happen to his family if they went into the mountains. Now it just happened that there was a small city nearby called Zoar and Lot said, “Can I go to the city of Zoar and live there since it will be safer?” God allowed him to move there and they fled. While the Lord rained down fire and brimstone from heaven, Job’s wife looked behind her and, right there and then, was turned into a pillar of salt. Job fled into Zoar, but he became scared and instead fled into the mountains of Zoar with his two daughters.
It says later on in chapter 19 God remembered that He had told Abram what was happening and God knew that he would be worried about Lot, so God told Abram that Lot and his family was safe and that Abram needn’t worry anymore.
This story is so amazing. It speaks of how as God’s children we are delivered from His wrath. Because of the cross we are saved by His amazing, boundless and unconditional love.
If you are in a bad place either physically or emotionally call out to God wherever you are and He will save you. God loves you already where you are and He’s waiting for you to call out to Him. If you don’t know what to say, don’t worry. Simply ask Him to save you and He will. There are no long fancy prayers that you need to pray, just ask Him.
God bless all of you, my precious avids😇💖 Have a lovely afternoon.
I decided for thanksgiving I’d talk about someone who had to learn what being thankful was all about. He had a rough time, but still he had hope in God. You already know this man of faith was–Job. But our story doesn’t start with Job. Instead it starts in Heaven. Now there was a certain day when all of Heaven’s angels stood before God and Lucifer also came in God’s presence. This is where things get interesting for Job. God asks Lucifer, “Where have you been and what have you been doing?” Lucifer answers him, “I have been all over the world. Walking here. Walking there.”
And God said, “Have you thought of my servant Job? He is a righteous and honourable man. All He does is to my glory.”
“That is true,” Lucifer replies, “but that is because You have kept him from poverty and loss. Take everything he owns away from him and he will turn on You and curse You right to your face.” God knew Job’s faith and he replied, “Do what you want, but don’t hurt him.” So Lucifer did.
Enter Job. Job was offering sacrifices for his children because he knew they were not right before God and he was no doubt concerned and saddened. While he was offering his sacrifices a lone servant came running to him in a panic and, crying, said, “Master! Master! The oxen were plowing, the donkeys next to them and Sabeans (an ancient tribe of South Arabians) came and stole them. They killed all your servants and I escaped to come and tell you!” While Job was hearing this, another of his servants came rushing towards him trembling. “Master! Master!” He cried, “Fire from Heaven burnt up your sheep and all your servants. I’m the only one who escaped!” Job had just barely recovered himself when another servant came running. “Master! Master! The Chaldeans (for all intents and purposes, Babylonians) and stole the camels as well as killing the servants. While the men were trying to comfort each other another man came running as fast as he could. This man looked worse than the others. Job’s heart couldn’t handle it, but he remained calm. If God had a plan, Job would trust Him to the very end even if Job had to die. The servant was catching his breath, when he looked up. His face was covered in tears as he said, “Master, your sons and daughters were having a feast in their brother’s house and a powerful wind came and hit the house from all four sides and it fell down on them, crushing them!”
Job left them and was so devastated that he tore his clothes and his cloak. He shaved his beard and fell to his knees worshipping God. He said to God, “Naked I was born and naked I will die. You have given and You have taken. Blessed is your holy Name!” Despite all his pain, not once did Job turn on God.
Again there was a day when the angels all stood before God and Lucifer came too. God asked him, “And have you seen that despite all you have done, Job still is faithful to me.” But Lucifer was not ready to give up and instead, again, challenged God, “You are right. He lost everything, but if you hurt him, he WILL turn on you–any man would.”
“Alright,” God replied, “go ahead, but don’t kill him.” So Lucifer went and struck Job with boils all over his body–even down to the soles of his feet. While Job sat in his sorrow and pain, scraping the boils with a piece of pot, his wife came along and with disdain said to him.
“What on earth is wrong with you?! God has taken everything–our sons, daughters, wealth even your own health! Yet you still say God is good! Curse God and just die!” Job looked up at his wife and said to her, “What is wrong with YOU? You are acting like a foolish woman! Do you think that all God does is bless? Do you claim to know his heart? Are we exempt from the world’s evil?” Even in his loss and discomfort, he never once betrayed God.
Word of Job’s suffering came across to his three friends, Eliphaz, Bildad and Zophar. While they were on making their journey, they saw Job from far away. All three of them wept for Job’s suffering and tore their clothes and cloaks joining him in his mourning. 7 days and nights they sat quietly and mourned with him.
After Job chapter 3 until chapter 38 it alternates between Job cursing his existence and his friends asking him what he could’ve done to bring this on himself. After chapter 37, we see God speaks to Job out of a whirlwind and asks him all kinds of questions. Questions that God knows Job can’t answer, but that is God’s point. He is telling Job that He is the Creator of all things. All the questions He asked Job were all to bring Job to that conclusion.
You see from the very beginning God knew what was going to happen. From the day that Job was born God knew Lucifer was going to do what he did and that Job would remain faithful even at his weakest. In the very last chapter Job comes to this same realization. He says to God that he knows God is capable of all things and that He is a good God.
You’re probably wondering why I chose Job on Thanksgiving, well it’s quite simple. I chose Job because at the very end Job realizes that everything God gave him was a blessing and he was thankful for what God had given him. In the last chapter God doubles Job’s wealth and restores all his children. Job even names his daughter in the last chapter and includes them in his inheritance.
Yesterday we took a day to look at our blessings and be thankful for what was given to us. If anyone was thankful for what he had, it was Job.
Please do go and read for yourselves. Job is my favourite character in the Bible. His story always gives me strength.