The Fall into Self Absorption 

December 30, 2017 at 2:41 pm (WSGD Newes) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

In Hebrew, the phrase ‘the eyes of both of them were opened’ can be correctly interpreted in our English comprehension today as:

‘Then they became aware of themselves.’

Before this pivotal moment awareness of one’s self was non-existent. That is phenomenal! Notice closely how the second half of this verse confirms this. 

So they sewed fig leaves together to make themselves loincloths.’ 

First of all fig leaf was a ridiculous choice of covering. Neither hardy nor even comfy. Later in verse 21, God makes them fitting cloths to accommodate their new self aware self. Sturdy and comfortable. Yet it cost an innocent life. Self absorption always cost a life! Secondly, they had never before this moment even thought to ‘make something for themselves’. It simply wasn’t needed, desired, or known; this idea of making something for oneself or of one’s self. They did die in that moment. Not from our human perspective after the fall. Death means one ceases to exist, physically present to touch and be. Yet to Adonai, the death was that now we had the capacity to live like we were the most important thing to consider. True life has no need to consider itself. This is why Yeshua was able to say so simply: “Do not consider/worry about what you will eat or what you will wear.”  Really what He was saying was ‘don’t think about yourself.’ Self absorption kills life. Envy, jealousy, hatred, rage, greed; these things killed Yeshua, these things killed many and still do. These things are prime examples of how everything around one becomes all about them. Worry grows where contentment was planted. Considering oneself becomes the cancer, all of humanity was infected by it. There’s no scripture that says, think about yourself, not one. In every scripture that refers to a personal inventory, it’s God who is the one considering us, cleansing us, making us new. We are told to consider our actions, namely how they will – first of all reflect and effect Adonai, –  secondly how they will effect others. How they effect us is determined by the result of Adonai and others coming before or after one own self. Most of us know it’s usually ugly if it’s after.

Let’s fast forward to the next pivotal moment. Where Yeshua (Jesus) points out the key to following Him.  

John 15:9-14

Just as My Father has loved Me, I too have loved you; so stay in My love. If you keep My commands, you will stay in My love – just as I have kept My Father’s commands and stay in His love. I have said this so that My joy may be in you, and your joy be complete. This is My command: that you keep on loving each other just as I have loved you. No one has greater love than a person who lays down his life for his friends. You are My friends, if you do what I command you.   

I say somewhat loosely that this is a pivotal moment. On one hand every Word that came from Yeshua’s lips was pivotal. Yet here we see Him adress the first pivotal moment in the beginning where self absorption took hold. No, He doesn’t mention Genesis 3. Not like we in our reference minded ways tend to do. From the Hebraic mind that moment was never needed to be recalled only on occasion. That moment was the focus of all misdeeds in the whole of history. It was never forgotten, always in the mind of those who sought after and followed the One True God. Yeshua spoke from history at every point in the present for the future. He covered every aspect of time in every Word He spoke. He is, was, and always will be infinite! Our minds do not naturally process this way. It requires the Holy Spirit to even begin to. Hence why so often Yeshua said, “He who has ears let him hear.” In essence He was anointing each soul at the moment to be opened, much like the eyes were opened at the fruit-fall but in reverse. To become more aware of one’s self will never be the goal of God’s Kingdom. Let your communion with God be where you get your revelation time for your own self – from His eyes only, who we are, what needs changed – there is no condemnation but more importantly – there’s no focus on one’s self.  Self help is evil as there is no such thing. We could no more help ourselves than we can dance and the rain pours. If man kind wants to be ‘bettered’, to improve upon what they are in and of themselves, it will take God alone to conceive a new perception in the heart and mind of us all. For only in Him can our love become true love, our kindness true kindness, selfless and unaccounting. 

I’ve known only a few people whom I would consider having been given the gift of love. It’s as natural as breathing for them to drop anything for someone without thinking of inconvenience or their own self. Without accounting what they do for who and especially with no expectation of any return. The majority of us, if honest, will admit that it takes work to weed those ugly things out with the help of the Spirit of God. Not that the joy Yeshua speaks of isn’t an instant reward. Most people I know really feel joy at helping another, giving to someone. Yet we must remember what the thief comes to steal in God’s Kingdom. Joy. How does he do it? By bringing back to mind awareness of self. Expectation creeps in, resentment erodes gratitude and begins to take account of time lost, energy expelled, feelings hurt, thank you’s not expressed, love not returned. In other words the fig leaves of self absorption begin to find their ways into our hands and not even a second has elapsed before we find we sew to cover what our God created soul automatically knows is shameful. 

Look at the difference between these two pictures. 

They say a picture speaks a thousand words. In application to what we’ve covered so far, what do these pictures say to you? It’s a lifestyle and total change in thinking in every way. The difference will astound you. One is community and selflessness. The other is convenience and self centered. One invest in the currency of the Kingdom of heaven, the other invest in the things that rust and moth destroy. One is the way of this world, my house, my life, my responsibilities, my needs, my timing, my opinion, my rights. One is the way of God in this world. Where we live, we have responsibilities, we have needs, we have time to give, energy to share. Where my heart is not settled until those around me are better fed than I. 

What would the world be like, according to the Father and Yeshua’s ways? The question has been asked, written about, talked about forever. Yet we can not read, study and listen our way into application. What can you do to enter in, now, where you are, today? This is always the purpose of the question. The purpose of such writings and talks. Action, trust in action, love in action, our walk with God evident by what becomes a natural flow from the Spirit from our union with Yeshua. His coming is imminent. Yet, the mission, the call, – has not changed. We wait, we look for Him. But we do so by looking at others. The church is failing in this. The average Believer is failing in this. So the world looks like a empty plot with cranes lifting heavy objects into place for one person at a time, for physical comfort and individual needs and wants. Completely clueless of the neighbor, unaware of the Father’s heart breaking. The Father who made all things, for the purpose of love. Not self reliance. 

I leave off with a small handful of the Word that shares this view. From the beginning of our Bible to the end, Adonai, over and over again, points to this fundamental element of His heart. It would be wise for anyone desiring to enter into that Heart to look every single one of them up and ask the Living Word to breath this life into their soul, to again go back to the garden – where self absorption was non-existent. Discovery of God and all He did, does and desires to do is the only thing that matters. May we all be shaped by the wind of His mouth in it! Again just like at the beginning – where He said: “Let there be Light!” And there was! 

Galatians 6:2

Bear one another’s burdens – in this way you will be fulfilling the Torah’s true meaning, which the Messiah upholds.  

Philippians 2:3-4

Do nothing out of rivalry or vanity; but, in humility, regard each other as better than yourselves – look out for each other’s interest not just your own.   

1 John – the entire book.

Proverbs 21:21

He who pursues righteousness and kindness finds life, prosperity, and honor.  

Proverbs 28:27

He who gives to the poor will lack nothing, but he who hides his eyes will get curses in plenty.  

Proverbs 29:13

The poor and the oppressor have this in common: Adonai gives light to the eyes of both.    

All of Matthew chapter 6.

All of Isaiah chapter 5. 

Deuteronomy 10:12-21

So now, Israel, all that Adonai your God asks from you is to fear Adonai your God, follow His ways, love Him and serve Adonai your God with all your heart and all your being; to obey for your own good, the mitzvah  (general principles for living) and regulations of Adonai which I am giving you today. See, the sky, the heaven beyond the sky, the earth and everything on it all belong to Adonai your God. Only Adonai took enough pleasure in your ancestors to love them and choose their descendants after them – yourselves – above all people’s, as He does today. Therefore, circumcise the foreskin of your heart; and don’t be stiff necked any longer! For Adonai your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great, mighty, and awesome God, who has no favorites and accepts no bribes. He secures justice for the orphan and the widow; He loves the foreigner, giving him food and clothing. Therefore, you are to love the foreigner, since you were foreigners in the land of Egypt. You are to fear Adonai your God, serve Him, cling to Him and swear by His Name. He is your praise and He is your God, who has done for you these great and awesome things, which you have seen with your own eyes.  

Deuteronomy 15:7-11

If someone among you is needy, one of your brothers, in any of your towns in your land which Adonai your God is giving you, you are not to harden your heart or shut your hand from giving to your needy brother. No, you must open your hand to him and lend him enough to meet his need and enable him to obtain what he wants. Guard yourself against allowing your heart to entertain the mean-spirited thought that because the seventh year, the year of sh’mittah (release) is at hand, you would be stingy toward your needy brother and not give him anything; for then he may cry out to Adonai against you, and it will be your sin. Rather, you must give to him; and you are not to be grudging when you give to him. If you do this, Adonai your God will bless you in all your work, in everything you undertake – for there will always be poor people in the land. That is why I am giving you this order, ‘ You must open your hand to your poor and needy brother in your land.’  

Micah 6:8

Human being, you have already been told what is good, what Adonai demands of you – no more than to act justly, love grace and walk in purity with your God.  

I will forever be grateful the Lord led me to Mr. George McDonald’s writings. The best thing I’ve ever read about ‘Self’ has been written by his hand. See link below. 

https://hisimagenme.wordpress.com/2012/09/23/self/

✡ May the grace and peace of Yeshua the Messiah be found in us, dying to ourselves and living fully in Him with each passing day in 2018! ✡



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One Person Wrote…

December 19, 2017 at 1:04 am (Remodeling the Mind, Thoughts to Ponder, WSGD Newes) (, , , , , , , , )

One person wrote…and many agree

But do they do the practice of returning unto Thee?

Many eyes have read, and hearts have leaned towards

But have those hearts sang along with heavens wooing chords?

If we read such prayers, and our feet should fail to turn

These words become the smokey air as this paper burns. 

2 Chronicles 7:15

Now My eyes will be opened and My ears will pay attention to the prayer made in this place.   

Ecclesiastes 5:4-7

If you make a vow to God, don’t delay in discharging it. For God takes no pleasure in fools, so discharge your vow! Better not to make a vow than to make a vow and not discharge it. Don’t let your words make you guilty, and don’t tell the Temple Official that you made a vow by mistake. Why give God reason to be angry at what you say and destroy what you have accomplished? For this is what happens when there are too many dreams, aimless activities, and words. Instead, just fear God!  

(For further reading: James chapter 4 and 5)

✡ Grace and peace to you in the Name of Yeshua the Messiah ✡

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Winter

December 13, 2017 at 1:48 pm (Poems, Remodeling the Mind, Thoughts to Ponder) (, , , , )

Frosty breath

Crisp blue skies

The hush of winter lullabyes 

Drawing down to warmer protective interiors

Where Adonai reigns supreme

The season of rest

His ruling breath

O coat my soul

With Your fire

Color this inner chamber

With Your desire

Plant the permanent flowers of peace

That no earthly changes can cease

Shelter me in Your radiant will

And teach me the wisdom

Of Peace, be still.

(2017- by Lisa VanValkenburgh)

 Isaiah 55:8-13

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, and your ways are not My ways,” says Adonai. “As high as the sky is above the earth are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts. For just as rain and snow fall from the sky and do not return there, but water the earth, causing it to bud and produce, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater; so is My Word that goes out from My mouth – it will not return to Me unfulfilled; but it will accomplish what I intend, and cause to succeed what I sent it to do.”

Yes, you will go out with joy, you will be led forth in peace. As you come, the mountains and hills will burst into song, and all the trees in the countryside will clap their hands. Cypresses will grow in place of thorns, Myrtle will grow instead of briars. This will bring fame to Adonai as an eternal sign, imperishable sign.  

Job 37:5-7;9-13

God thunders wonderfully with His voice, He does great things beyond our understanding. He says to the snow, ‘Fall on the earth!’ – likewise to the light rain, also to the downpour. He brings all human activity to a stop, so that everyone He has made can know it. 

Out of its chamber comes the storm, with cold out of the north. By the breath of God, ice is given and wide waters freeze over. He weighs the clouds down with moisture, and they flash forth His lightning. He, by His plans, turns them around, so they do what He commands them anywhere on earth; He brings them forth on the earth sometimes to punish, sometimes to express His grace.  

✡ May the season of rest and shalom be richly poured out into you by the power of Yeshua the Messiah, and for His namesake! ✡

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A Time to Search and a Time to Give Up

December 5, 2017 at 6:28 am (Mile Stones, Thoughts to Ponder) (, , , , , , )

It struck me as odd as I read chapter 3 of Ecclesiastes that no one really teaches the meaning of the more negative aspects of the “a time to…” section.  I read it and said “Really, God, YOU have appointed times to give up!?” The searching part is more easily found among countless scriptures to seek, search and so on. So what does this mean that there is a time when God appoints one to give up?

I think the temptation is to put a more ‘spiritually positive spin’ on it. Such as; give up sin, bad attitudes, bad habits, control over people places or things and the like. Yet this entire passage does not give merit to such a perspective. 

A time to search, a time to give up… 

It seems to me it indicates giving up a search. Or to cease to seek out. To stop turning over rocks, digging for water, even looking for solutions. I think every moment is appointed for us to give up the more positively spun rhetoric (sin and the like). But here again, this passage seems to be saying – these are specifically appointed times. After all we only die once. We are only born once (well twice if we truly become a follower of Yeshua). We plant once a year, we uproot once a year. All of these are seasonal. In fact some interpretations or versions of the Bible say “For everything there is a season”  – mine does. It also reads…”A right time for every intention under heaven”. Seasons and intentions are progressive and developmental. Our flesh is always, timelessly, being asked to give up sin and so on. While these may have aspects of progression and development they are not seasonal. Or are they? Is there a time/season appointed under heaven to give up searching for righteousness? Searching for doing good – to everyone – friend or foe? 

In so asking of Yeshua to teach me the answer to this question, a series of months went by. You could say three seasons. I was taught not with words but a series of circumstances that never yielded any fruit except when I literally gave up trying harder to seek, search and try harder to be good. It has been the strangest experience in my walk with God so far. 

I will continue my thoughts further. For now, I wonder, what has He taught you about giving up – as it is referred to in Ecclesiastes 3?  I’m not so sure it’s an answer that is sought out in correct context. Therefore the finding of any answer is rather given than found. Which I find is how wisdom is obtained for the most part. It’s something we seek (search for) but only God – whose ways are not ours and thoughts are not like ours – gives wisdom. 

Now more than ever we all need wisdom. It’s given, not earned. He makes Himself found by us as we seek Him. There is nothing in us worthy enough to plot a map out to find Him. We do not endure such a search without Him. We give up too easy. At least that’s been my experience. Even when I thought I didn’t give up, He shows me every time where I do and did, if ever so slightly in measure. Pride is a sneaky thing. 

Yet my greatest comfort in such thoughts is that I know nothing can snatch me from His hands. Nothing can stop Him from teaching me through times/seasons. Not even me. 

✡ Grace and peace in Yeshua the Messiah ✡

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A Time to Worship

November 1, 2017 at 12:51 pm (Psalms, Songs) (, )

Watch “Shane & Shane – God of Ages Past (Performance Video)” on YouTube

LYRICS:

✡ May Yeshua the Messiah wash your feet with His Singing! ✡

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