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Eowyn's Heart

The name of this blog is based on the character Eowyn from Lord of the Rings because I strongly identify with her on many levels. The purpose of this blog is to proclaim the glory of my Lord and King through His work in conforming me into the image of His Son, Christ Jesus. In all things, I trust you will see His hand at work.

Thursday, March 02, 2017

Return to Me - Day 2

Hello Again,

Day 2 of the study, day 4 of my "re-commitment" :-p  Need to get to bed earlier and be more committed to not going back to bed after my husband heads to work!  I will keep working at it.

Anywho, I decided I didn't want to be restricted to the formatting & length of posts permitted by FB so will be posting my study thoughts here and then linking to them in FB.  I've also been pondering the Bible Study idea and, though I'm not quite ready to commit to starting yet, I'm definitely leaning that direction and I think I've chosen the book I want to work through.  It's titled, "Birthright: Christian, Do You Know Who You Are?" and it's written by David Needham.

The challenge in presenting a Bible Study in this format is that you can't really use a "study" that's already written - what's the point? Without the opportunity for discussion, as you would naturally have in a live group, it just becomes more of a copy/paste and "here's my thoughts" - which really isn't much of a "study". So I've been thinking about whether to snag a book of the Bible or a particular topic and the Lord has nudged me in the direction of topic - and to the "Birthright" book mentioned above.  I got about 1/2 way through reading this book years ago, which was transformational in my thinking about my relationship with Christ.  As my personal study in Return to Me also focuses on my relationship with Christ, this is a perfect mix.  

So - if you're interested in following along with me in a Bible Study type forum - which I have yet to figure out ;-) - snag yourself a copy of Birthright and watch this space for updates :-)  I don't think it will be long - just waiting for the Lord to confirm this idea and figure out the technical details for how to make it a true "study".

Now - on to my Day 2 thoughts from Return to Me . . .

I was tempted to "catch up" and read through Day 4 - but only briefly.  As I said Monday, I really want this to be more of a heart than task process.  I'm only going to do one day at a time and if I miss a day here & there, then I'll just take that much longer to get through the book!  :-)

So I set myself to soak in the subject of Day 2 - which is a concept I hold to be of the highest importance.  

The title of the section is "Hallowing His Name" and the focus is on what it means to see God for Who He Is - HOLY.  Most of the impact for me in this section came from the verses referenced:

1.  Leviticus 10:3 (go on, look it up . . . I'm not gonna spoon feed this ;-)  ).  "I MUST be regarded as holy . . . I MUST be glorified." (emphasis mine).  MUST - an imperative, a requirement, a non-negotiable.

"Holy" means "to be set apart"  Rev 4:8b "holy, holy, holy" - Anything repeated more than once in Scripture = PAY ATTENTION, THIS IS IMPORTANT.  Don't miss this - God is OTHER than us.  Yes, we are made in His image, but we are NOT Him and He is NOT us - God is GOD - there is NONE like Him.  He is "set apart". He is, to finish the quote of Rev 4:8, "Lord, God Almighty."  He is not to be viewed as anything less than this - "I MUST be regarded as holy . . . I MUST be glorified."  While the person of Christ is presented as our brother and friend (and this intimacy is strongly encouraged in the New Testament), that MUST be taken in context with an understanding that Christ is GOD and GOD is holy and must be glorified.  It is a beautiful blending of intimacy and awestruck reverence that the Scriptures describe.

2.  Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 "FEAR God . . ." (emphasis mine). I've heard this defined as "respect" and "reverence" - which is accurate, but - I believe - incomplete.  I can respect and reverence something/someone without having a healthy *fear* of them.  I am reminded of C.S. Lewis's Aslan and the Hippogriff, Buckbeak, in the Harry Potter stories.  There is a clear element of respect and reverence those creatures demanded *combined* with a healthy fear of their power and capacity to be dangerous.  From C.S. Lewis: "Is he-quite safe? I shall feel rather nervous about meeting a lion"..."Safe?" said Mr Beaver ..."Who said anything about safe? 'Course he isn't safeBut he's good." (http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/344456-aslan-is-a-lion--the-lion-the-great-lion-ooh)  

I think that far too often, we Believer's forget that our God is NOT "safe".  And such forgetfulness makes sin less egregious in our own eyes.

3.  Proverbs 8:13 - on the subject of sin, and with the previous point in mind, this verse tells us that a proper fear of the Lord naturally results in a "hate" for that which is "evil".  It then goes on to expound on "evil" as Pride, Arrogance, the "evil way" and the Perverse Mouth.  Something to seriously consider as we (I) pray and ask the Lord to reveal areas I need to confess.  I can guarantee you, none of us is totally innocent in all of these areas . . . 

4.  Isaiah 66:1-2.  The opposite of what the Lord hates and, therefore, precisely what we should strive to have defining our own character, "But on this one will I look: On him who is poor and of a contrite spirit, And who trembles at My word,"  The Hebrew for "poor" is better translated "humble" (reference: https://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=H6041&t=ESV) and should not be confused with financial reference.  Rather, this refers to the condition of a person's heart - opposite of Pride & Arrogance is Humble - aware of one's neediness, aware of one's weakness.  NOTE IMPORTANTLY - this is not a shameful thing - it is not shameful to be needy - it is not shameful to be weak!  SUCH a difference from the way the world presents things!!!  In fact, is is MORE DESIRABLE to be needy and weak and to recognize that in ourselves.  Such acknowledgement leads us to a deeper leaning on the strength of our Lord!!!  Dependence is NOT a bad thing when it is dependence on Christ alone. (II Cor 12:10)

That's it for today.  I hope this is useful to someone out there.

Sources for the Birthright book: 
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Birthright-Christian-Classic-Critical-Concern/dp/159052666X
Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/birthright-david-c-needham/1101010936  (nook is $5 less)

An internet search will give you a plethora of other options :-)


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