Quizessentials

March 11, 2021 at 9:32 pm (Remodeling the Mind, Thoughts to Ponder, WSGD Newes) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

This is what the projectors show up on the walls as the congregation enters the sanctuary…

Pastor Rick Rethorford was sitting behind the curtain just to the left of the pulpit platform. “Your glory, O Lord, is the point to all that goes on here today. Everyday. May You get the glory through me.” He watched as the room was filling with the noise and motion of family. Today was family day. All the family of the congregation would be present, only toddlers and infants ministries were available today. They would join all for the picnic after this service. 1238 people were now seating and greeting. Worship music still rang across the balusters in the ceiling. The singing was done with not a single instrument today. Voices were the great shout of worship. It had been amazing. The faces of all were filled with joy at the surprise of how fun and full it had been. Rick smiled, and stepped out to greet this family and lead them to the feet of Yeshua… Jesus.

The congregation slowly began to quiet as they watched their beloved Pastor of 25 years step to the pulpit. Reading the quote up on the walls to the right and left, shifting for comfort or discomfort, waiting…

“Good morning!” Rick spoke with his smile accenting his tone.

“Good morning!” Came the crowds reply.

“It’s our 25th anniversary! I thought we’d do it a bit different today. So you children and teens have joined us young and old adults for the service. Today is a whole congregation participation day. In the pockets of the seats in front of you and for those here up front, under your seats; is a paper and pencil. For your convenience a Bible is there to be a table of sorts to write on. Please, if you will would you begin by writing down the character of the Bible you would most like to be like.” Rick stepped back from the pulpit. “This is going to be fun!” He thought to the Lord.

The sanctuary filled with the sound of movement and papers rustling, some laughter and low audience murmurs. Soon, silence as the answers to the first inquiry were being thought of and written down. Eyes looked up in thought, months twitched. Each person rolling through the Word looking for the character of one that they most identified with or admired. There are many. Some wrote immediately. Rick waited until each face was again oriented towards him.

“There are three accounts in the gospels of the paraplegic who Yeshua/Jesus, healed but first He spoke forgiveness over him. This offended the crowd. He then, knowing what they were thinking asked which is easier: to forgive a man’s sin or heal him of his bodies wounds. Which do you think is easier?” Again Rick stepped away from the pulpit to que the congregants to their answers on the paper.

A sea of heads looked down at their papers. Young heads looked to the right and left to see other answers. Rick giggled inside. ” Lord, is it cheating to look at another’s paper?”

Again, Rick waited until all eyes rested on him to step back to the pulpit. He stood there, smiling. Letting the moment fill with joy. Little by little laughter rang out from the family before him. “You won’t be graded for your answers…” relieved humor filled the air more boisterous than before.

“On the bullet signs to my right and left, is a quote from Dr. Larry Crabb. A brother in our family, and respected member of authorship and counseling for the body of Messiah for many years now. I will read it aloud:

“Is the first sentence of this statement true or false?” Once again, Rick stepped away from the pulpit to indicate the congregants que to their papers.

Parents heads leaned over towards younger children who were questioning the question. Others sat looking at the bullets to the right or left, as if the answer was written up there to find. Others simply wrote their answers. 15 minutes passed until all attention rested again on Pastor Rick before them.

In total, 38 minutes had elapsed since the first question. Now the fun would begin. “Please go back to the first answer, who here wrote Yeshua/ Jesus down as your answer?”

A strong sense of consternation filled the air, as those with the answer sought after was revealed. 18 hands were raised. “Please, if you will look around at the hands raised around you.” The moment was pregnant with surprise, both from the few hands and the lack of them that were present in a sanctuary filled to the brim with people. Pastor Rick let the moment sit heavy and thoughtful. “Now it’s important for the second answer to speak to you from your page. How many said it’s easier to forgive sin than heal the physical body?” Again, hands both small and large began raising into the air. Amounting to about 1/3 of the people. All eyes refocused on Pastor Rick after a look around the room. He smiled a tender smile, “The third question could be considered a trick question, if you answered true, you were wrong in technicality. If you answered false you were right in technicality. The Word of God does not begin with a divorce. The story of God’s children in sin, does. You may be wondering how do all these questions tie together, you may not, as you may have already surmised through the Spirit the point to them. It’s not to shame, it’s not a right or wrong answer theme. Instead it’s a bigger question of “first things first” – Rick held up his quote fingers. The truth that we all long to have Yeshua/Jesus be our greatest aspiration for modeling is the point. The character for those who wrote another name can teach you this. So in a way it’s not a wrong answer, but it’s revealing. We live in a dark time in this world, with the light growing dimmer or brighter within the lamp house of our own hearts. My hope is that when we come together we fill each other’s lamps with oil, that helps us shine brighter, even if there’s humility involved. This is a time where discerning questions are crucial. Yet also an atmosphere of welcome for what could appear to be silly questions. Or obvious answers. We don’t gather here every Saturday to learn about the Lord, and that alone… we gather here together to learn about His heart for each of us. For you youngsters in your classes, is Yeshua the first and last thing you want more of when you leave here, for you teens, for each of us adults – this is the same. Age does not change the reality of the goal. Nor does it change the mission for each of us. My duty in love to the Lord is to encourage you to make Him everything – first, last and everything in-between. Your duty in love to the Lord, no matter how old we are, knowledgeable we are, well known or unknown, popular or peculiar – is the same. To know the technical truth of His Word, and the truth Dr. Crabb is getting at. To desire only Yeshua in His Word for our character. And to know that the fact that we all sit here… (tears begin to fall down Pastor Rick’s face, his voice shakes…) forgiven because of Him is far beyond healing of physical bodies, beyond miraculous physical provision, beyond ANYTHING we could ask for or imagine… so now… let us each bow our heads and speak to the Lord our hearts and let Him shape them as a result of the ingredients of this time together. Let’s let Him have the last say to us before we move on to lunch and enjoying each other. Just each of us and Him… let us bow our heads and seek the First and Last, our Salvation, our Hope.”

For the next 30 minutes heads were bowed, in unity but individual captivity to The One who was and is and is to come…

May the Messiah, Yeshua be our hearts decision maker, our minds discernment of wisdom, and our lives the oil of annointing in love. May we be found full and ready as these days open and close with the light of the Sun. May the darkness be as light because He dwells within us and shines through us. May our unity be in Him alone, no matter where our individual relationships be evaluated with Him, may He be our focus and strength. To Him be the glory, and Him alone… now and forever…

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Touch the Face of Heaven

March 11, 2021 at 9:30 pm (WSGD Newes)

Hollowed out, carved and shaped

Your justice like water shaped

My inside part, no one can see

The desert wind singing out to me

Just reach up

Reach up My Child

My love is fearce and deep and wide

It pulls your gaze

Straight to My heart

A teaches you to touch My side

This is the place, peace at home, My Father and I holding out our Hands

Willing you to reach, pull out your pride,

I’ll never leave

Never leave your side

In the sun scorched blazing wave

I give you strength

To touch the Face of Heaven

The sands may shift and create a tide

That offers testing to leave My side

But Listen Child, you know My Voice

Those grains of sand obey My voice

No shift or downturn

From heavens roar

Will ever leave the choice to score

Against My blood, that ran down through

The leagues of Love I’ve assigned to you

Just reach up

Reach up My Child

Inside the prayers that keep on revin’

Just touch My face and you’ll see heaven

Trembling fingers flex

My soul stretches out

In the vast sea of sand

My heart then grazes

Wind unknown to touch the earth

Sigh and longing

The second birth

No eye has seen

No ear has heard

No feathered thing

No metal bird

This breath of God

To grasp my all

And I shout out loud

I hear Your call

The Bread of Life

Though it’s unleavened

I’m filled anew

With the Touch of Heaven

My lungs burst forth

With the first real breath

Unsinged by son

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Hanukkah 2020

December 19, 2020 at 1:03 am (Thoughts to Ponder, WSGD Newes) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

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Jesus

December 5, 2020 at 3:23 am (WSGD Newes)

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Shabbat 12-4/5-20

December 5, 2020 at 3:18 am (WSGD Newes)

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