Valley of Blessing
As I sat by the furnace with my little one slumbering and his cheek tightly pressed against my tear stained heart, the day felt seemingly forgotten. I beheld the flames dancing with their faces towards the night sky and I longed for words to spill out of my heart that might bring a flicker of hope, a moment of rest for our fatigued fellows. I desired to encourage the storm tossed countenances I beheld throughout my day. Battle weary souls, willing themselves to put one foot in front of the other. "Abba, You are our only hope!" my heart exclaimed as I drove home after numerous errands before Shabbat. My little one peacefully exhaled, leaning tighter against my mourning heart. I reminisced about a certain night when John leaning tightly against Yeshua's heart, while His own heart was also in a state of sorrow. Blessed are those who mourn for they will find His comfort, His gentle embrace, where we can find rest... Beloved, this is where we rest and receive the blessings He longs to bestow on those being faithful through it all.
“And behold, I AM coming quickly. Blessed is he who heeds the words of the prophecy of this book.”
Again and again we find this invitation to His blessing. It is a narrow road, a lonely landscape, a territory to cultivate and to faithfully steward. It comes with responsibility and a call for diligence on our part. Oh Yah! May You bless us indeed and enlarge our territory, just as Jabez pleaded for blessing when he was destined by man to be a curse.
I Chronicles 4:10
And Jabez called on the God of Israel saying, “Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain!” So God granted him what he requested.
We see how His name, His character, is being placed upon us, His people, through Him blessing us.
Numbers 6: 23-27
YHVH bless you and keep you. May He cause His face to shine upon you and may He be gracious to you. May He lift up His countenance upon you and give you His shalom.
It is a call for a character that we will keep on being diligent, steadfast and true-hearted no matter the circumstances. And even if one should fall, to arise again and press on with a gaze utterly set upon our Sun of Righteousness.
How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night. He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, Which yields its fruit in its season And its leaf does not wither; And in whatever he does, he prospers.
It is a call for trusting and filling one's soul's cup with faith even when it doesn't make sense. To trust even when one has no evidence to hold tightly to His robe, humbly yet firmly pressing through the crowds.
Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord And whose trust is the Lord. For he will be like a tree planted by the water, That extends its roots by a stream And will not fear when the heat comes; But its leaves will be green, And it will not be anxious in a year of drought Nor cease to yield fruit.
It is a call to courageously receive the gift of forgiveness and to walk on this righteous road with mercy, humility and justice.
Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will not take into account.”
Blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute iniquity, And in whose spirit there is no deceit.
It is a choice one has to carefully calculate, counting the cost to walk on the road called blessing. It is meticulously narrow. It lacks the wisdom of the world, but overflows with the wisdom of the Counsellor.
How blessed is the man who finds wisdom, and the man who gains understanding.
It might be surrounded at places with onlookers ridiculing and mocking. Yet it meanders through the valley of Blessing where Jehoshaphat and Yah's people erupted with praise even before the valley's shadow reached their reality. Before the victory was won.
They considered Him faithful knowing that He promised to fight that battle. Even now, He invites us to count Him faithful and to allow Him to defend us. But more so He longs for us to enter into this pathway, this map of His blessing.
I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants, by loving the Lord your God, by obeying His voice, and by holding fast to Him; for this is your life and the length of your days, that you may live in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give them.
Even so, our Messiah came and invites us into this place of blessing in Matthew 5 with the beatitudes.
A contemplation on the beatitudes:
Now it shall be, if you diligently obey the Lord your God, being careful to do all His commandments which I command you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations of the earth. All these blessings will come upon you and overtake you if you obey the Lord your God...
We respond to His question, His invitation; "Will you follow Me, on this narrow road?" by being diligent in lovingly obeying our Abba, we choose Yeshua's character to become ours. As we behold Him and gaze into His heart and Word, we cultivate character that endures on this road called Blessing. Expectantly we can anticipate to enter through the gates of the New Jerusalem when our King returns to reign forever and ever!
“Behold, I AM coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to what he has done. I AM the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.” Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter by the gates into the city.
May we be found with robes washed and hearts ready, lamps alight, prepared to enter into His gates with hearts well trained in thanksgiving and praise. May we choose life and blessing. May we heed to this call, this invitation He is extending to us all even now. Who can be against us, if He is for us? Who's curse can stand, if He is blessing us in this manner?
In Him we live
And have our being
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A contemplation on the beatitudes
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