Before we get to Rhoda, here is a little back story.
James, John Mark’s brother, has just been decapitated or put to death by the sword. Now Peter is awaiting his execution. The season is Passover.
On the very night when Herod was about to bring him (Peter) forward, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and guards in front of the door were watching over the prison. And behold, an angel of the Lord suddenly appeared, and a light shone in the cell; and he struck Peter’s side and woke him up, saying, “Get up quickly. And his chains fell off his hands. And the angel said to him, “Gird yourself and put on your sandals.” And he did so. And he said to him, “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me.” (Acts 12:6-8, NASB).
While reading the passage, I heard another passage straight out of Exodus. “Now you shall eat it in this manner: with your loins girded, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and you shall eat it in haste—it is the LORD’S Passover.” (Exodus 12:11).
“And he went out and continued to follow, and he did not know that what was being done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision. When they had passed the first and second guard, they came to the iron gate that leads into the city, which opened for them by itself; and they went out and went along one street, and immediately the angel departed from him. 11When Peter came to himself, he said, “Now I know for sure that the Lord has sent forth His angel and rescued me from the hand of Herod and from all that the Jewish people were expecting.” (Acts 15:9-11, NASB).
Peter arrives at Miriam’s house, the mother of John (Mark), where many had been praying fervently for him. Look at the next verse closely because it is my main point.
“When he knocked at the door of the gate, a servant-girl named Rhoda (name meaning rose tree/ Rosebush) came to answer. When she recognized Peter’s voice, because of her JOY she did not open the gate, but ran in and announced that Peter was standing in front of the gate. They said to her, “You are out of your mind!” But she kept insisting that it was so. They kept saying, “It is his angel.” But Peter continued knocking; and when they had opened the door, they saw him and were amazed. But motioning to them with his hand to be silent, he described to them how the Lord had led him out of the prison.” (Acts 12:12-17).
What an interesting passage. Many times in scripture, it is the servant girls who are full of joy and who have great faith. A little servant girl told her master Naaman about the prophet Elisha and how he could be healed. I believe His handmaidens and servant girls are running to announce. They are not announcing that ‘Peter’ (pebble, a little stone) is at the gate, but The Rock, the Chief Cornerstone, is at the gate. These women are coming out to their posts, and their voices are going forth. Many in the assemblies will call them mentally ill or out of their minds–raving lunatics. They will try and stop them from prophesying, but Messiah will continue knocking on their hearts. His Holy Ruach Spirit wants to come in the house and minister.
With great JOY, these handmaidens and servants will run with the message–the Good News. Look for them! They have an aroma; it is the aroma of a rose bush. They have been pierced with his thorns. They have drunk from his cup, and they have waited, praying fervently to see his face.
“Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come into him and will dine with him, and he with Me. He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne’” (Revelations 3:20-21, NASB).
Remember, it is not just the priest, pastors, Rabbi’s, and teachers who are being used in this hour. Let’s look at the order.
“‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares,
that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh,
and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
and your young men shall see visions,
and your old men shall dream dreams;
18even on my male servants and female servants
in those days I will pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy.” (Acts 2:17-18—Joel 2:28-29).
Look for the prophesying maidservants. Look for Rhoda and taste her joy—inhale the rose bush with its thorns. Rhoda was told that she was “OUT OF HER MIND!” by those praying to see a miracle.
May we have the mind of Yeshua, Messiah. May we see and hear what Rhoda did.
Open the door– He is knocking. Make ready, prepare, a King is coming, yes, a King is here.
Note to readers: Obadiah’s Cave website is closing soon and many blogs will be transitioning to this site. If you’ve already read this, I pray it blessed you the second time around.
I am republishing some of my older blogs as my site New wine skins is closing. I hope you will enjoy these writings even if you’ve read them years ago:
When my grandpa was an old man, he got pulled over one night for a broken tail light in his pick-up truck. The officer, who had known my grandpa all his life, was stunned that he had never received a driver’s license. My grandpa lived through the great depression. He was a sharecropper at a tender age. He never finished school, and he never learned to read. How could he take the written exam?
The officer decided to just go for a drive with my grandpa on a trip. Afterward, if his driving went well, he’d issue him a license. Of course, he was a careful driver and passed, but times sure have changed. Missouri was one of the first to require a driver’s license in 1903, but South Dakota didn’t until 1959. Driving without a license today will get you in jail. Our cars require our attention. During this blog, I will compare us to a car.
A broken tail light or headlight is dangerous. Brakes that need to be repaired, even windshield wipers may not seem serious until it starts pouring rain. Our horn can cause an accident or prevent one. Ecclesiastes says, “There is a time to honk your horn and a time to remain silent.” Sometimes we need our horn. Sometimes it just makes a loud noise.
My husband and I went to dinner the other night. As we pulled into the parking lot, there weren’t any parking spaces close to the door. I noticed a car right across from the entry that was parked wrong– taking up two spaces.
I said, “Look how they parked. They caused everyone else to park wrong.”
He said, “There’s a sermon there.”
Whatever we do impacts those around us. It’s the ripple in the water. When we are angry, anxious, bitter, unforgiving, and impatient, we can significantly influence those around us. It works in the opposite manner too. If we are full of love, joy, peace, longsuffering, and keep no record of wrongs, we also affect those around us.
If I rear-end you in traffic, I can greatly harm your car and mine. If I slam my vehicle into one of your children, this doesn’t just impact your child. It distresses you too.
Miriam was put out of the camp for seven days and isolated for beeping her horn too loudly. God exposed her. When we speak negatively against another, we cause people to isolate the person or view them in a bad light. We plant seeds about their character. We can even plant seeds about their gift or assignment. Sometimes our license to drive is taken away from us, and we are removed from the road for a season because we were laying on the horn.
Not only does parking wrong cause a chain reaction but other things we do as well. If we want the person in front of us to go faster, and especially if they are in the fast lane, we may get as close to their bumper as possible. We aggressively are saying speed up. We are pushy, but do we do this in other areas? Yes.
What about when a car pulls out in front of us? We may have to slam on the breaks to prevent an accident. The guilty party in a wreck usually says, “I’m sorry. I didn’t see you.” Many times we don’t see or hear others because we are too focused on ourselves. Are we a better driver this year than last year?
Wrecks can happen in our relationships. Wrecks influence every car behind us and can leave others at a standstill. Jonah impacted everyone on the ship. They lost their cargo, but they also, in fear, prayed to Jonah’s God. The choice Jonah made to flee from his assignment caused the storm, not the devil. Maybe we all need to start becoming better drivers and obeying His road signs before we receive a ticket.
We yield at the stop signs instead of coming to a halt.
Have you ever been a backseat driver or tried to tell someone how to drive? Most of the time, people don’t like it. They have a route they are used to. People are afraid to take new paths–make new traditions. We are creatures of habit that have inherited lies. “Surely our fathers have inherited lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit.” Jeremiah 16:9. We throw out the olive tree and drag an evergreen in our house.
We want to drive our own way.
The more dents and wounds our car has, and the more wrecks we’ve been a part of, may cause us to get out of our vehicle for a season. We don’t feel like driving anymore. It’s hard out there on unpaved roads with potholes and construction zones.
Yes, this ole flesh of parking or driving any way we want, no matter how it affects everyone on the road, is not good.
How do we control our steering wheel? James says we can put bits in horse’s mouths and control them and also a ship but the tongue? Fuhgeddaboudit!
How much wood our tongues do kindle! Even our tapping fingers.
As I pondered the car space, I started thinking about our last vehicle, a Ford F150. I never could drive it well, and I never could park it. Many times when I parked it, my parking job looked like the car that had thrown everyone off. But what if someone passing by thought, “Look at them, they think their truck is all that!” And this is what we do. We assume. Even the car I saw and pointed out that had parked wrong may have had no choice because the car next to them was parked wrong.
We justify riding close to the person in front of us because, after all, what we have to do is important. We are trying to get somewhere, and our destination more important (sarcasm.) Even the car riding on our butt may be trying to get to a hospital before a loved one passes away. We ease off the gas to teach them a lesson when we might not have all the facts, but most of the time, it’s probably just rude behavior.
The person in the fast lane poking along might be zoning out. At times like this, we want to be in control of their car. We want to push them in the lane we think they should be in, even if they are driving the speed limit—even if they are getting off at the next exit. Our way of driving is best.
We even get offended when drivers don’t take our directions. Don’t we know the best way? Don’t we have all the truth? (Sarcasm.)
It is Abba who searches the engines in our cars. “For the eyes of the LORD move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.” 2nd Chronicles 16:9 NASB.
Completely His . . . not double-minded.
A heart that doesn’t have two opinions. It doesn’t have an olive tree and an evergreen. A heart that is separated from the world and the things the world does. The world drives hard and fast and has no patience for anyone. It’s pushy and loud. It can run people over for a Black Friday sale. It’s always riding our butts, and blasting out profane lyrics, and giving directions that lead to death. The world doesn’t take instructions. It closes its ears.
Regardless of these factors, my point is our parking job or driving can throw off everyone in our lane. So can our words or lack of them. I am guilty!
Have you ever been in a snowstorm that was so bad you found an 18 wheeler and stayed close behind it because it could light the way? Yeshua said, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness but will have the Light of life.” John 8:12 NASB.
Let’s all try and get in the slow lane and turn off the noise. Give people their space. Pray for those we love to find The Way. If our light is shining brightly for Him, we can act like that 18 wheeler amid the storm, and they will be drawn to HIM.
God has a GPS. When we follow His Ruach HaKodesh and His Word, He lights our path. His word is a lamp to our feet. Let’s all open the door and let the Authority inside our vehicles. He can show us how to drive better, safer, and softer. Let’s obey the traffic signs, and if we don’t understand them because we lack, perhaps He will send a teacher we can let in our car as my grandpa did.
May the Great Mechanic check our oil lamp and our engine light. When we allow Him to be in control, we are destined for greatness!
The aged man named Joshua stepped carefully to the first oven with his ancient tools. He wore steel-toed boots and protective glasses. He knows that synthetic garments cannot be worn here because anything made of false fibers will melt. The heat from the oven warmed his face as he continued spinning the metal rod in a circular motion. He had great vision for his work and could foresee the finished masterpiece before he ever breathed upon it.
“Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you” (Jeremiah 1:5).
There were three furnaces in the hothouse where he labored. The first one is the initial furnace, inside of which is a pot (called a crucible). Like a gold jar containing manna, this crucible transforms. The sizzling pop of glass altering and shifting in flames was like a melody in his ears. He smelled a sweet aroma as smoke blew forth from the piece he was working on. The light of the fire from the furnace glimmered upon his face catching the hairs of his auburn beard as more sparks flew like fireflies.
“And you came near and stood under the mountain; and the mountain burned with fire unto the midst of heaven, with darkness, clouds, and thick darkness” (Deuteronomy 4:11).
The dictionary defines the word crucible as a situation of severe trial, in which different elements interact, leading to the creation of something BRAND NEW.
The man knows those pieces of glass will join together and eventually be an object of exquisiteness. But for now, they are just ‘BROKEN’ pieces of clear glass.
“You are to tell them that this is what the Lord GOD says: ‘I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel associated with him, and I will put them together with the stick of Judah.I will make them into a single stick, and they will become one in My hand.’ (Ezekiel 37:19).
“The LORD is near to the brokenhearted And saves those who are crushed in spirit” (Psalm 34:18).
He notices that his piece is beginning to take shape as he reaches inside the furnace and into the crucible and gathers another layer on the end of his blowpipe. Joshua, now, directs his attention to the table of stone, rolling his molten glass on the marver.
The marver is a slab of stone upon which molten glass is rolled to give it its shape. His Father, long ago, wrote on Sapphire stone tablets with his very Finger the Words of LIFE. This Word became flesh.
All the words and symbols of the hothouse have meaning just as His Torah does. Reflect on how the Word marver is similar to marvel, “a miracle; a thing, act, or event which causes astonishment.” “Joshua is called a glass smith, gaffer, or a LAMP WORKER. A lampworker (often also called a glassblower manipulates glass with the use of a TORCH.
“He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire“ (Matthew 3:11).
“In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ (Yeshua, Messiah).” (I Peter 1:6-7).
We are to be lampworkers, shining for all to see.
“You are the light of the world. “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:14,16).
After rolling and shaping his instrument, Joshua then heats the glass in the GLORY HOLE – all the while, in the glow of the fiery flames, he is turning the blowpipe and keeping it in constant motion.
The Glory of our Father, His Shield, His Bow, and His Strong Right Arm is shaping each of us with continuous motion, like the intensity of a dove in rapid movement fluttering over the waters. His Glory will come out of that hot hole like gold. His Glory will shine through His Creation. His Shekinah and the light of His fire is changing the elements in each of us—burning out our fleshly natures.
“When He has tried me, I shall come forth as gold” (Job 23:10).
From the Corning Museum of Glass:
How did the furnace acquire the name glory hole? “While there is no concrete answer, there are several plausible origins of this term. In an old factory, where smoke and dust were everywhere, a 2100° opening would have created an illusion, not unlike that seen in paintings of saints and angles where “The Glory” radiated from their heads. A break in the clouds where sunlight passes through is also called a glory hole.”
The man takes the heated glass on the blowpipe and rolls it over the colored powdered dust. He picks up pieces with each roll. He places fragments of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control onto his creation. Then, it’s back to the Glory Hole, where the colored glass is heated to melt into the clear. Again, he turns the pipe to keep the shape at the end of the pole. He takes his other hand and picks up the cherry block of wood (to bud and flower-like the almond tree) and then wet paper (Like the fresh ink of a new Torah scroll), stainless steel, and other tools to help fashion his creation. Sitting at his bench, he determines the shape of each piece with a careful eye.
Now, the actual blowing begins:
“The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit“ (John 3:8).
He lifts the blowpipe to create a bubble and blows a puff of his Ruach HaKodesh into his vessel. He cannot blow too much at this stage, or the piece will not take shape. Then it’s back to the Glory Hole for reheating and reshaping. He walks back to his merciful bench, inspecting. He continues this over and over again until he has a vessel worthy of use.
“Then I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was, making something on the wheel. But the vessel that he was making of clay was spoiled in the hand of the potter; so he remade it into another vessel, as it pleased the potter to make”(Jeremiah 18:3-4).
The man wipes the sweat from his brow and takes his creation to a punty. This is another steel pipe that’s been heating over flames. Moving the piece from the blowpipe to the punty will make it possible for the artist to create the opening of the vase or the bowl. He knows this opening will allow his vessel to hold oil. The punty (rod) will be attached to what will become the bottom of the piece.
“Those who were foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them,but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps“ (Matthew 25:3-4).
Eventually, the man wraps the blowpipe and snaps off the piece, breaking it away. After heating it again in the glory, he returns to his bench and uses multiple tools to open the mouth of his vessel.
“I, the LORD, am your God, Who brought you up from the land of Egypt; Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it.” (Psalm 81:10).
The blower then takes the punty and hits it firmly so that the piece drops off into a box that is filled with thick layers of fire blankets. Our Father blankets each of us and protects us from all the fiery darts of the enemy.
The man then walks to the Annealing Oven to Cool his masterpiece.
“The function of an Annealing Oven is to perform the process of softening an object or changing other properties of the object through cycles of heating and cooling.”
The word annealing is derived from the Old English word onǣlan, which was formed from the Old English root āl, meaning “FIRE.”
The Hebrew word for fire is Esh: (Genesis 2:7)
Creator Fire maker: From the ancient Hebrew text.
“And the fire maker formed a man of dust on the tinder, and he blew into the tinder the breath of life, and the man became a living fire.”Jeff Benner.
OH, THE GLORY OF ADONAI!
“Using gloves, the artist picks up the scorching-hot piece and quickly transfers it to an annealing oven. This oven is kept at 960⁰F and then cooled down over a period of 14 hours to room temperature. This slow cooling down is to prevent the piece from cracking or breaking.”
(14 is the number of Messiah).
The Lamp Lighter and Glass blower reminded me of a passage from Malachi chapter three.
“Behold, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple; and the messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight, behold, He is coming,” says the LORD of hosts. 2 “But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner’s fire and like fullers’ soap. 3 “He will sit as a smelter and purifier of silver, and He will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, so that they may present to the LORD offerings in righteousness. 4 “Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the LORD as in the days of old and as in former years.”
As we venture into the crucible, the Glory hole and the KNEELING oven.
May we allow the Lamp Lighter to form us and create a vessel worthy of holding His oil and His Spirit. May we let His Ruach Breath breathe in us, and reside there. May we bless the G-d of Abraham, the G-d of Isaac, The G-d of Israel! The One who created the Universe. And may our fast go well with us to inscribe our names in His Book of LIFE.
“You are holy and Your name is holy and those who are holy praise You every day. Blessed are You Adonai, the Holy G-d.”
In this teaching, we will look at Miriam and the anointing oil she poured out, but first, I have a question. Are we cursing or holding back blessings from our fellow family members?
There was a prophet in the Bible named Balaam, who was enticed to curse Abba’s people. Once he realized that he could not curse what the Father had blessed, then Balak gets angry, and he says something that I want you to meditate on.
“Then Balak said to Balaam, “Fine, but if you won’t curse them, at least don’t bless them!” Numbers 23:25.
Are there people in the body that we won’t bless because they don’t live up to our standards, or we have become fearful of them in their beautiful tents? Do we treat them like lepers?
“Now when Jesus (Yeshua) was in Bethany, at the home of Simon (to hear) the leper, a woman came to Him with an alabaster vial of very costly perfume, and she poured it on His head as He reclined at the table” (Matthew 26:7).
The underlying text for the word “leper” here is not Hebrew but Aramaic.
“Garbah” in Aramaic means leper. However, “gar-a-bah” means jar maker or potter.
For years I read this verse and thought, “Why didn’t Yeshua heal the leper?” Was he a leper before and became whole and then given a nickname? No.
So many times, we make mistakes like this because we don’t have all the information.
Have we been isolating and pointing fingers and calling certain ones in the body of Messiah, lepers? What if, in all actuality, they are helping the body contain oil or become smeared with oil? Simon probably made the vial filled with costly perfume as he was a glassmaker/potter.
One for Israel has a fascinating article called The Leper Messiah.
“Isaiah 53:4– The Sages called the Messiah, the leper scholar. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him a leper, smitten of God, and afflicted.”
”‘When will the Messiah come?’ — ‘Go and ask him himself,’ was his reply. ‘Where is he sitting?’ — ‘At the entrance.’ And by what sign may I recognize him?’ — ‘He is sitting among the poor lepers…‘” Says the Talmud (Sanhedrin 98a and 98b). The passage goes on to describe the Messiah carefully bandaging the wounds of lepers, instead of shunning them.”
Leviticus 13:46 says, “They must live in isolation in their place outside the camp.”
Simon would not have been found hosting dinner parties with his sisters if he were a leper. And if he were healed, he would not have been given a title of leper still.
The text reads that Yeshua is in Bethany at the home of Simon.
(Bethany–the noun בית (bayit) means house. The verb ‘ana’ means to afflict, oppress or humble. Noun ענו (‘anaw) refers to the poor, afflicted or needy. Noun ענוה (‘anawa) means humility.” (Abarim Publication).
A house filled with humility sounds refreshing. The body (his house) needs myrrh. It is being oppressed and afflicted just like my autoimmune disorders—His body keeps attacking itself.
A woman came to Yeshua with an alabaster vial of very costly perfume, and she poured it on His head. Think about this in a spiritual sense. Yeshua is the head of the body.
In the book of Luke, a woman, and one who is described as sinful, pours out healing balm on His feet. “From the sole of the foot even to the head There is nothing sound in it, Only bruises, welts and raw wounds, Not pressed out or bandaged, Nor softened with oil” (Isaiah 1:6).
Oh, how His body needs to be healed and softened.
Oh, how it needs anointed and perfumed and made ready.
“Behold, the days are coming,” declares the LORD, “that I will punish all who are circumcised and yet uncircumcised—(Jeremiah 9:25).
He is saying; I will punish all those who are circumcised in body but not in spirit. Those who hold to the letter of the Law but have no humility or concern for my house. Those who afflict, oppress, and hurt my sheep. Those who keep the Sabbath perfectly, and yet cannot make things right with their brothers and sisters.
Paul explains more in (Romans 2:29).
“No, a man is a Jew because he is one inwardly, and circumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code. Such a man’s praise does not come from men, but from God.”
A woman anoints Yeshua’s head–a woman anoints his feet.
“And there was a woman in the city who was a sinner; and when she learned that He was reclining at the table in the Pharisee’s house, she brought an alabaster vial of perfume,” and standing behind Him at His feet, weeping, she began to wet His feet with her tears, and kept wiping them with the hair of her head, and kissing His feet and anointing them with the perfume. (Luke 7:37-38, NASB).
She began to “WET” His feet.
Strong’s Greek 1026: To moisten, rain, send rain.”
To send RAIN! Oh, daughters grab your vials!
The home in Matthew and Mark is of Simon the Leper (Jar maker), while in Luke it is a house of a Pharisee named Simon. Notice the same name is given. The Name Simon (shama) means to hear, but the verb implies to obey. We who know the Shema, we who keep his feasts, we who keep his Sabbaths are in need of being cleansed from a false leprosy. Are we putting people outside the camp when they are not leprous? Are we criticizing those who are young and have not seen what we see?
Have we been looking at our brother or sister as if he is a leper when Yeshua is residing in his house and at his table? Have our thoughts been judgmental towards our brothers and sisters?
One woman in the body was recently called a witch. A very well-known artist whose music reached the secular charts. A young woman who makes beautiful music. Instead of putting the man out of the camp who slandered her, we shunned the one who may need maturity in areas (who doesn’t?), but is living up to all the light she has right now. She gets isolated from the camp instead of the one cursing her. This should not be. Where are the older women who can take the younger aside gently and correct instead of bloodshed?
Why do the head and the feet need oil? Tears? Rain?
There was a king who was sick in his head. He wanted to usurp authority.
“It is not for you, Uzziah, to burn incense to the LORD, but for the priests, the sons of Aaron who are consecrated to burn incense. Get out of the sanctuary, for you have been unfaithful and will have no honor from the LORD God.” But Uzziah, with a censer in his hand for burning incense, was enraged; and while he was enraged with the priests, the leprosy broke out on his forehead (Right where all his pride laid) before the priests in the house of the LORD, beside the altar of incense. Azariah the chief priest and all the priests looked at him, and behold, he was leprous on his forehead; and they hurried him out of there, and he himself also hastened to get out because the LORD had smitten him. King Uzziah was a leper to the day of his death; and he lived in a separate house, being a leper, for he was cut off from the house of the LORD.” (II Chronicles 26:18-21).
A separate house—cut off — what a sad place to be.
When the disciples and Pharisees rebuked the woman who anointed Yeshua, they explained that this perfume could have been sold for the poor. Yeshua said, leave her alone, the poor (Oppressed) you will have with you always. Why? Because we live in a world where men are evil and powerful and full of themselves, therefore many are oppressed. Last year over 4,000 Believers lost their lives for their faith. As many as 11 die every day. Some of them have never been taught his feasts or Torah, but they are facing death for His Name.
While the body fights and argues over trivial matters, we sit sick, needing oil. While the body argues and slanders one another, we sit scraping sores, needing cleansed, healed, unified, and redeemed.
While the body shuns women and causes them to submit under a false pretense, keeping them silent in the body, clothed in bondage, THESE women will bring oil and anoint the head and the feet! Look for the Miriam’s along with the Rose of Rhoda.
While we, His body, get into arguments over dogmas and keeping the letter of the law, we sit bruised with raw wounds and no soundness.
John identifies Mary of Bethany as the woman who anointed Yeshua. Mary loved her Beloved. Let’s look deeper at her name.
“We surmise that the name Miriam/Mary is a proper plural form, and thus means Myrrhs or rather Occasions That Call For Myrrh. Since the words for mother (אם, ‘am) and tribe or people (אמה, ‘umma) are closely related (both come from the root אמם, ‘mm), the name Miriam/Mary would perfectly fit a community of which every individual is anointed with the myrrh oil.” (Abarim publication).
MAY EVERY INDIVIDUAL in His Body BE ANOINTED WITH THE OIL OF MYRRH! Look for these women as they are crying tears over the feet. As they are pouring oil on the head. Oh, heal us, Abba! Make us ONE!
I found this poem from last year and wanted to post it. Maybe you have felt the same things at times?
I gathered all my strength and tried to raise up from the ashes. I held ashes in my hands and raised them up to Him
“Here, take these ashes– I screamed!”
“Give me beauty,” I belted.
I glimpsed at the altar of tears.
An ocean of bottles.
My breath trapped inside one container.
I dragged one leg and limped to the throne room.
It was there that I mourned the loss of everything.
Every child I carried in the womb
Every house, home, and lineage
I broke open like an alabaster box and poured my soul on the bottom perch before the Lamb that had been slain.
“Give me beauty,” I moaned.
His gentle eyes were piercing through me.
“Give me oil for this heaviness,” I wept.
I pawed the earth like a horse who’d been shot.
I scraped my boils with pottery and whispered a faint
“The Lord Adonai has given,
And He has taken away,
Blessed be the Name!”
I bound up my heart with bandages, and still, the blood ran
I opened the Psalms, and He told me I had forgotten how He parted the sea,
Spared me of death–
Covered my sins–
Bathed me and cut my umbilical cord.
How He covered me with His skirts and anointed me with oil.
I felt chains snap!
My wrist a bloody mess–
My hair unkempt–
My mouth in need of fiery coals from the altar.
Place them on my tongue, I plead.
When will you come again and pick me up and carry me off? From this vast wasteland?
He waited until I was 99 years old.
My dried up womb–
My dried up pen–
My dried up exhausted spirit met first fruits morning,
The sky opened up,
A fountain broke forth from the deep and poured healing waters over my head!
“Thirsting for God in Trouble and Exile.
For the choir director. A Maskil of the sons of Korah.
1As the deer pants for the water brooks,
So my soul pants for You, O God.
2My soul thirsts for God, for the living God;
When shall I come and appear before God?
3My tears have been my food day and night,
While they say to me all day long, “Where is your God?”
4These things I remember and I pour out my soul within me.
For I used to go along with the throng and lead them in procession to the house of God,
With the voice of joy and thanksgiving, a multitude keeping festival.
5Why are you in despair, O my soul?
And why have you become disturbed within me?
Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him
For the help of His presence.
6O my God, my soul is in despair within me;
Therefore I remember You from the land of the Jordan
And the peaks of Hermon, from Mount Mizar.
7Deep calls to deep at the sound of Your waterfalls;
All Your breakers and Your waves have rolled over me.
8The LORD will command His lovingkindness in the daytime;
And His song will be with me in the night,
A prayer to the God of my life.
9I will say to God my rock, “Why have You forgotten me?
Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?”
10As a shattering of my bones, my adversaries revile me,
While they say to me all day long, “Where is your God?”
11Why are you in despair, O my soul?
And why have you become disturbed within me?
Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him,
The help of my countenance and my God.” Psalm 42, NASB).
“Though you have slept among the sheepfolds (the sheepfolds, שְׁפַ֫תָּ֥יִם Strong’s Hebrew 8240: fireplaces, ash heaps), yet shall you be as the wings of a dove covered with silver, and her feathers with yellow gold” (Psalm 68:13, KJ).
Recently, I received an urgent prayer request for a little girl who is three years old. She was rushed to the hospital with a fever, the inability to breathe on her own, and a bleeding heart. We later learned that this precious girl named Kabreeyah (He will be Praised) had a heart murmur, and a rare condition called Cor Triatriatum. She had an extra layer of skin that needed cut from her heart. It is here that I must ask a serious question: Do you and I have a layer that needs cut from our hearts too? During this blog, I pray a spiritual scalpel knife will cut away our flesh nature. It may hurt, but afterward, we will be free.
What is Cor Triatriatum?
“First reported in 1868, cor triatriatum, that is, a heart with 3 atria (triatrial heart), is a congenital anomaly in which the left atrium (cor triatriatum sinistrum) or right atrium (cor triatriatum dextrum) is divided into 2 compartments by a fold of tissue, a membrane, or a fibromuscular band.”
Once I learned of this heart condition, it reminded me of another condition.
“So circumcise your heart, and stiffen your neck no longer” (Deut. 10:16).
To add to this story, after the child came through surgery, she was to remain sedated for three days. I was suddenly thinking of Yeshua in the heart of the earth three days and three nights, and His blood that covered all our sins. We often get caught up in knowledge and forget about blood and blood covenants. But before we dig into this blog, I am pleased to tell you Kabreeyah is doing well. Praise the Yah in her name.
There are many incredible women in the Bible. Some of them we glance over while reading without thinking much about their tenacious spirits or their holy acts. One woman helped save a whole nation from bondage in Egypt by sparing her husband’s life. Her name is Zipporah, which means ‘bird.’ She is found at a well trying to draw water among evil shepherds. They are harassing her as Moses comes to her rescue.
Zipporah was the 7th daughter of Jethro. The number seven represents order, completion, and rest. The very root of her father’s name means to be at rest, but the definition of his name means ‘remnant.’ Hmm, a remnant at rest.
Zipporah is remembered as the wife who circumcised her oldest son or son’s so that the Father would not slay her husband. She is also known due to Aaron and Miriam calling her a Cushite (Dark) woman. Could it be possible that in this one short story, the whole Biblical journey of redemption is hidden–hidden like the dark name Cush? Hidden like the Holy Set-Apart Spirit. Hidden like Moses in the Ark among the Sea of Reeds?
“And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Cushite woman whom he had married; for he had married a Cushite woman” (Numbers 12:1, NASB).
Cush or Kush is thought to be the land of Ethiopia.
“The first part of our name Ethiopia is thought to derive from the verb αιθω (aitho), meaning to light up or kindle. The related adjective αιθος (aithos) means shining or blazing, and αιθοψ (aithops; also containing οψ, ops) means fiery-looking or sparkling. The ethnonym Ethiopian means Fiery Eye and implies Bright Eyed or Keen of Vision.” Abarim Publications.
Possibly, at this point, you are seeing how this woman, Zipporah, represents the Holy Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit)?
“Now it came about at the lodging place on the way that the LORD met him (Moses or his son?) And sought to put him to death. Then Zipporah took a flint and cut off her son’s foreskin and threw it at Moses’ feet, and she said, “You are indeed a bridegroom of blood to me.” So He let him alone. At that time she said, “You are a bridegroom of blood”—because of the circumcision” (Exodus 4:24-26, NASB).
There are several different opinions on the matter. Some believe it was his oldest son who was going to be killed. Others believe that Moses was busy with lodging arrangements and his appointed task, and he failed to circumcise his sons.
“Rabbi Shimon Ben Gamliel, assumes that the resolution of the episode, the circumcision of the child, is intrinsically related to the entire event. According to this opinion, the intended victim is not Moses but his son. While this would clarify the identity of the victim, the motive for the attack remains obscure. When we recall the context, the discussion of the death of the first-born of Egypt, the threat of a child’s death becomes more intelligible — Moses’ hesitation in coming to redeem the people indicated some type of indifference to the nation described as “the first born of God.” Therefore, Moses’ own first-born is in peril.” Aish.com.
Why do we need to reflect on circumcision and our hearts?
“Know therefore that the LORD your God, He is God, the faithful God, who keeps His covenant and His lovingkindness to a thousandth generation with those who love Him and keep His commandments;” 10but repays those who hate Him to their faces, to destroy them; He will not delay with him who hates Him, He will repay him to his face” Duet 7:9-10).
Ouch! Sadly, we can think we love Adonai and that we are keeping His Commandments, but instead, we may actually hate or despise Him. How can that be?
“Hatred” and “despise” are from the same Hebrew root, sane. To hate describes an emotional reaction of repulsion. In this state, a person wishes only to keep distant from the offense or the offender. Hate entails distance. It is just the opposite of love, which brings about the desire for closeness. When the word is used in the Tanakh, it is often associated with idolatry, opposition, aversion, and ill-will. In this regard, the verb describes a reaction rather than a causative action. Something or someone acts in such a way that we react with a strong emotional rejection.”
Notice the word distance. This happens in our relationship with Him and with our family, and our brothers and sisters. That’s why it is always good to reach out to someone who has hurt you or someone you have hurt. If not, distance happens.
In Revelation, Yeshua warns us to come back to our first love. He tells one church that he has this against them, they have lost their first love. They have distanced themselves and possibly you, and I have too? Desensitization and the things of the world can damage our love.
Zipporah says, “A bloody husband–A bridegroom of blood.”
Is our Father a bloody Husband? Let’s go deeper.
A blood covenant was not to be annulled. This very ancient covenant was given in Genesis 15. Abram brings a heifer, a goat, and a ram three years old. He also carries a turtledove and a pigeon. He splits each down the middle except the birds. It’s a cutting— a covenant. Think of a virgin on her wedding night and the blood—two becoming one. The husband carries his bride over the threshold.
The Father told Abram that his descendants would be strangers in a land and mistreated for hundreds of years, but He explains that He will judge that nation and free them by sending Zipporah’s husband.
“When the sun had set, and darkness had fallen, behold, a smoking firepot and a flaming torch appeared and passed between the halves of the carcasses. On that day the LORD made a covenant with Abram” (Gen. 15:17-18). This should remind us of Passover and the blood on the doorpost.
On Sinai, God made a covenant with His people Israel. All the people swore to uphold their part of the agreement by being obedient to God’s commandments and instructions. There are blessings for obedience and curses for disobedience. We are to act in such a holy manner, we become priest, but we can’t do that if we hate Adonai or our brothers and sisters.
Paul writes letters to Corinth and the assembly there, and he speaks to immature people. He even confronts the leadership to throw some out who claim to keep this covenant.
“And I, brethren, could not speak to you as to spiritual men, but as to men of flesh, as to infants in Christ. I gave you milk to drink, not solid food; for you were not yet able to receive it. Indeed, even now you are not yet able, for you are still fleshly. For since there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not fleshly, and are you not walking like mere men?” (I Cor. 3:1-3).
Paul becomes highly sarcastic, and in irony, he speaks more. Before posting Paul’s (Sha’ul’s) words, I want to add a snippet from Gill’s commentary.
“They were not full of Adonai, and divine things; nor of Christ (Messiah), and of grace out of his fullness; nor of the Holy Spirit, and of faith, as Stephen and Barnabas are said to be; nor of joy and peace in believing; nor of goodness and spiritual knowledge; but they were full of themselves, and were pulled up in their fleshly minds with an opinion of their abilities, learning, oratory, and eloquence, of their ministers, and of their own great improvements in knowledge under their ministrations. They fancied they had got to a perfection in knowledge and were brimful of it; and as the full stomach, from which the metaphor is taken, loathes the honeycomb, so these persons loathed the apostle’s ministry, and the pure preaching of the Gospel; imagining that they had attained to something above it, and stood in no need of it; when, alas! they were but babes, children in understanding, and needed milk instead of strong meat; so far were they from being what they thought themselves to be.”
Oh, friends! We can be right here and not even know it. We can pass by a mirror and not even see our true reflections.
I think you will be surprised by Paul’s words and his description of what it is like to take up a cross and follow Him. Before you read his words that cut as sharply as the surgeon’s tools on a three-year-old child, imagine him speaking it to your assembly. Can you imagine what the people would say?
He says in sarcasm,
“You are already filled, you have already become rich, you have become kings without us; and indeed, I wish that you had become kings so that we also might reign with you. 9For, I think, God has exhibited us apostles last of all, as men condemned to death; because we have become a spectacle to the world, both to angels and to men. 10We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are prudent in Christ; we are weak, but you are strong; you are distinguished, but we are without honor. 11To this present hour we are both hungry and thirsty, and are poorly clothed, and are roughly treated, and are homeless; 12and we toil, working with our own hands; when we are reviled, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure; 13when we are slandered, we try to conciliate; we have become as the scum of the world, the dregs of all things, even until now.” (I Cor. 4:8-13).
He says he did not write this to SHAME them. He continues in chapter five by removing people from among them. Is that loving? Some would say no. Matter a fact; some wouldn’t dare speak this raw truth. Where are the apostles? We need them in the body more than ever. Where are His prophets who hate sin and see the greater issues? Maybe I sound a tad strong or judgmental? I’m asking leadership to start praying for the Father to send them to your assemblies. Look out among you and pray.
Let’s read more of Paul’s words that cut.
“I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called brother if he is an immoral person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or a swindler—not even to eat with such a one. 12For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Do you not judge those who are within the church? 13But those who are outside, God judges. REMOVE THE WICKED MAN FROM AMONG YOURSELVES.” I Cor 5:9-13, NASB).
He tells the people in chapter six not to be bound up with unbelievers. He asked them a question: What does light have in common with darkness?
This covenant is serious business.
I want to wrap this up with a closer look at the names of some of the key players and a closer look at our hearts.
The daughter of Pharaoh is named Bithiah. Strangely this Egyptian princess has a name that means, “Worshipper of Yah or daughter of Yahweh.” She, like Ruth, has cut a covenant with Adonai. She goes against her father’s wishes to kill the Hebrew boys and spares Moses. This woman draws Moses out of the ark (basket). Later on in our story, the Torah will be given to Moses, and he will place it inside the Ark of the Covenant. The Ark is the heartbeat of the tabernacle. This golden chest, with its hidden Torah, is to be circumcised on our hearts. It is more precious than GOLD.
“Yet shall you be as the wings of a dove covered with silver, and her feathers with yellow gold.”
The worshippers of Yah draw out water from His Torah. The Torah is an abundant fountain of water. Yeshua even informs a woman at a well that if she had but tasted His living water, she would never thirst again. What are you thirsty for today? Fame, fortune, a spouse, a #1 bestseller like Paul’s letter here that was written in chains in a prison cell? His living springs bring more refreshing than any silver or gold. His sweet water and Holy breath are greater than any accomplishments, accolades, riches, or kingdoms of this world.
We are peculiar people. We should look and act differently. We should eat differently. Our clothing should be modest. We should celebrate differently. We have a different calendar. We are to speak words of life. We do not look like the world, and that is exactly what perks their appetite. Without Him in our lives, we are just drinking bitter water and complaining and searching for things that can never fill us up.
Oh, Abba cut me!
Cut the fleshly skin from our hearts!
“The Rabbis applied to the daughter of Pharaoh the verse from the “Woman of Valor” poem “She sees that her business thrives; her lamp never goes out at night” (Prov. 31:18). In the Midrashic exposition, the “night” in this verse is that of the plague of the firstborn, in which all the firstborn of Egypt died. The female firstborn also died in this plague, with the exception of the daughter of Pharaoh. Despite her being a firstborn, Moses was an advocate for her, and she was saved by merit of his prayer. Solomon, therefore, declared (Prov. 31:18): “She sees that her business thrives [ki tov],” since “ki tov” is an appellation for Moses, of whom it is said (Ex. 2:2): “she saw how beautiful [ki tov] he was.”
Noah’s Ark comes from Strong’s 8352 ‘tebah’ in Hebrew, and it is the same word used for Moses basket. Noah’s Ark saved eight souls and protected them from the judgment. Babies are circumcised on the 8th day, so why wouldn’t the man who the Father is sending to free His chosen people, why wouldn’t that man, Moses, circumcise his son or sons? One son is named Gershom (Exiles) or (stranger in a strange land). NOBSE Study Bible Name List Eliezer as God Is Help.
“Note the (assumed) phonetic similarity between the word עזר (azar) meaning help, support, and עשר (‘eser), meaning ten; to a Hebrew audience, the name Eliezer may have sounded like God’s Ten.”Abarim Publications.
And here we see the lost tribes of Israel needing the Holy Spirit (a pretty little bird) to bring them back into His covenant. A little bird, like a dove, descended on the spotless Lamb as he came forth out of the water.
After a bloody death on the cross, the lost sheep of Israel were able to come back into His covenant. He ascended to the heavens, and they waited for the promise, the comforter, the Holy Spirit, the dove, which was poured out at Shavuot.
Zipporah’s name means bird—(Holy Spirit)
Moses name means (He Who Extracts, or He Who Draws Out Of The Waters).
Moses mothers name, Jochebed, means YHWH, the Name of the Lord.
Jethro (Zipporah’s father) a remnant at rest.
The Father of Glory wants to live inside or dwell inside our temples. Our temples are supposed to be filled with His Spirit, lit with His menorah, and full of His Bread of life, giving a sweet smelling incense. May the Master surgeon take His Spirit and His scalpel and cut away our flesh, so we can live and draw water from His well.
“Then you will say on that day,
“I will give thanks to You, O LORD
For although You were angry with me,
Your anger is turned away,
And You comfort me.
2“Behold, God is my salvation,
I will trust and not be afraid;
For the LORD GOD is my strength and song,
And He has become my salvation.”
3Therefore you will joyously draw water
From the springs of salvation.
4And in that day you will say,
“Give thanks to the LORD, call on His name.
Make known His deeds among the peoples;
Make them remember that His name is exalted.” (Isaiah 12:1-4).
I went to visit some dear friends a couple of weeks ago. I love these people. I love their hearts and how they have done missionary work in poverty-stricken countries. I love how they don’t have much money, but what extra they do have, they use to buy Bibles for orphans in Malawi or put a roof on a church that literally has an open heaven with rain coming inside.
Most of us wouldn’t even walk a mile to sit in a building in the rain with no roof. These people in Malawi are hungry in more ways than one.
My friend shared how she collected money and had a tin roof put on the church and how the people lined up when she got out of the car. They were in such awe and crying tears of gratitude. They were running to honor her! One woman gave her a royal gift–a chicken!
So as I was saying, I went to visit my dear friends, Cheri and Wade, and Wade was diagnosed with ALS. I made a meal to bring with us in the car because Wade can’t get out anymore.
We laughed and ate and talked and prayed. It was Shabbat, and as I watched my friend feed her husband his taco, I wondered what it was like for her to hand feed her spouse. The movies usually depict a sexy couple feeding each other seductively with chocolate covered strawberries, but what is it like to look into the eyes of the one you are one with and realize that each moment is sacred. Each smile. Each wipe of a cheek.
Her shoulders are pillars, and her legs are firmly planted. She is like a strong tree–a woman of valor.
Cheri is exhausted, but you would never know it.
After a bit of visiting and eating, I went to sit with my friend on his enclosed patio. He rode in his chair, and I followed. I plopped down on a cushioned seat and admired the beach theme, and petted his dog, Tutt. After a moment, my friend said, “I like to sit out here in the mornings and look outside. The sun cascades through the window and shines on my legs and my face.”
Wade hasn’t been able to leave his home for months. As he spoke, I remembered a time, shortly after my release of Walter the Homeless Man, when I had been to Mayo clinic and was very ill. There had been much stress and family issues that seemed to take me over the edge. I had to stay in bed upstairs at our old house, and my hubby had to make sure I had water, medication, and snacks– everything I would need because I couldn’t get up and down the steps while he was at work. I was much too weak. A few weeks later and a few rounds of IV steroids, I was able to take a car ride to a restaurant called The Overlook–Walter’s Pub. Floor length Glass windows on a hillside overlooking the water. It was fall, and all the leaves had changed from green to a beautiful golden orange that lit up the sky. I was weak, but, oh, so thankful to be out of bed. I cried most of the way there. Tears of JOY!!! Have you ever cried over the color of the leaves? Have you ever cried over the sun shining in your face?
I love Abba, and I wouldn’t trade a minute of the journey– as Garth Brooks bellows in my head– I could have missed the pain, but I’d a had to miss the DANCE!
Oh, My SOUL!
May our SOULS SHINE! May we not ‘overlook’ His beauty and All of His wondrous creation.
My friend Wade never complained that day. The once strong carpenter, a trade of our Master and Savior, has gained some different tools in his toolbox. These tools were teaching me many lessons, and as the evening drew near, Wade struggled to cough up the stuff in his chest he needed to get out. After composing himself, he continued to smile and joke about the ball game. He spoke about how good it felt to sit in his recliner since my husband was there to help him in and out of it. He was enjoying the day. The Shabbat in all her Glory was shining on him.
My friend Wade didn’t lament about a whole host of things. Tiny things we take for granted. Tiny organs that lay hidden behind ribs and bones that one day will come together and stand dressed in glory, but for now, each day, my friend grows worse, yet stronger:
And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.
–II Corinthians 12:9-10, NASB
Meeting Wade and Cheri have been one of the biggest blessings in our life! They are people of integrity, and one day I’ll dance with Wade and Cheri, and we will have a drink of the best wine we’ve ever tasted–poured out by the greatest Servant that’s ever walked this earth, but for now, time is a precious thing.
A personal message on Cheri’s Facebook page recently ministered to me. She said this:
“One year ago, our lives changed forever. One year ago, we heard a doctor say “as a physician, this is one time I wish I could say you have cancer. I’m sorry.” That’s when the letters A L S entered our life, and invaded our home and the body of my sweet husband. But one year ago is also when we learned a few other things as well. 1 . Never take your loved ones for granted. 2. Pray big, worry small. 3. God is an ever present help in time of trouble. 4. Never ask why. Even our Savior Yeshua suffered on this earth. 5. Trust in Him with all your heart and soul. 6. Take that much needed trip. Before you CANT. 7. People disappoint, but Abba will never let us down. 8. Speak life, be a light to others, stop all the negative junk with yourself, and others. 9. Sometimes we are stronger than we ever imagined we could be. And 10. Sometimes our hero is right there under our nose….mine was. I love you Wade Fox. You are amazing.”
Each morning presents new obstacles and new sunrises — new colors of paint. Today, His Spirit lives in us, and we are said to have the same mind as Yeshua. May we try harder to reflect His foliage. Yes, let’s work harder to have compassion for the hurting. See the trees for the first time. Taste the rain when we are sick of it. Make a snow angel as a child would. Notice the people He places in front of us. Look at the sun like Wade does, and sing to the moon, for time is speeding faster, and each day the mirror shows us we have grown older–weaker. Let us give Glory for our breath in the morning. May we become more forgiving–more steadfast. Guard our hearts against those who would cause us to dwell on things that are toxic and meaningless.
I don’t care what kingdoms we have built, what business, how much is in our bank account, how educated we are, how esteemed we are by men; it can all be taken from you in an instant.
Moses, today you are going to walk up a hill and die.
Take this cup from me, Yeshua cried. Take this cup! But not my will, but Yours be done.
This life is such an incredible journey, no matter how long we are here. Each day is like putty in our hands, a paintbrush between our teeth, a golden ticket, a song, and we can feed a hungry child naturally or spiritually. We can collect money for a roof, notice the sun shining in our face and the color of the leaves, or the bareness of a tree waiting to bud for the next season. Even a tree that looks dead has sap bubbling up underneath, just waiting to blossom and bloom.
I hope this message ministered to you and that you will keep my friends in your prayers, and if you feel led to give this couple a love gift to help them during this difficult time or perhaps a gift for some of the orphans, Cheri and Wade love, please click the contact box and send us a message. We will make sure every gift gets in their hands.
Recently, a friend brought to my attention a very unique flower.
Here in Louisville, at the YEW DELL Botanical Gardens, they displayed an Amorphophallus konjac–aka the Voodoo Lilly, also known as the corpse flower. The flower evokes a horrid smell and an unusual bloom for 2 to 3 days and is native to China. When the plant blooms, it stinks worse than a rotting carcass, and multiple photographs resemble a man’s member. ( a smelly seed?)
Multiple lessons ran through my mind as I read the article and watched men from our police department wearing a gas mask while inspecting the flower.
It just so happened that the same day my friend sent the article, I read the following definition.
“The name Jericho, according to Jones’ dictionary, may mean the City Of The Moon. Norse Study Bible Name List defines it as a Place Of Fragrance.
If the name Jericho is indicative of the meanings above, what a lovely place to be. Of course, the people in Jericho were worshiping the moon, but we also know that the Father placed that big night light in the sky! “Then they came to Jericho. And as He was leaving Jericho with His disciples and a large crowd, a blind beggar named Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, was sitting by the road” (Mark 10:46, NASB).
The Bible describes this blind beggar in Mark like this,
“He was the son of Timaeus.”
He needs the Son of David.
“The name Bartimaeus means Son Of Timaeus. . . Timaeus means Highly Prized, the name Bartimaeus means Son Of He Who’s Highly Prized, or Son Of honor.
Spiros Zodhiates (The Complete Wordstudy Dictionary) circumvents this conundrum by deriving the second part of the name Bartimaeus from the Hebrew verb טמא (tame), the regular Hebrew word for to be or become unclean. That would render the name Bartimaeus the meaning of “Son of the Unclean One, or Son Of Uncleanness. . .” Abarim Publication.
Sometimes what the world regards as highly prized is actually unclean. Sometimes a flower doesn’t have a sweet aroma. When we read about various forms of sickness in our Bibles, many have a hidden message with nothing to do with physical ailments. Bartimaeus’s father’s name meant “highly valued” as in wealth or goods. These goods could represent knowledge or prophetic gifting, or material wealth and esteem. He was known due to his father’s honor of great wealth or of having great goods, but he’s a beggar. His father’s name also meant “unclean.” He was the son of the unclean wealthy man, and he was “blind.”
‘Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked,” (Rev. 3:17).
Miserable. What picture does that word evoke?
When we read the previous story in the book of Mark, chapter 10, we read about a rich young ruler who was righteous and had kept all the commandments since his youth, but Yeshua told him that he lacked in one area. He told the man to sell everything he owned and give it to the poor and follow Him. The man left sad.
What’s this have to do with Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus? Much.
Bartimaeus is blind, and he is crying out. “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Those who led the way were sternly telling him to be quiet; but he kept crying out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” (Luke 18: 38-39, NASB). His father isn’t blind physically. If he is, we don’t read that, but what we do learn is that he is unclean. “For no one who has a defect shall approach: a blind man, or a lame man (the man laid at the gate beautiful), or he who has a disfigured face, or any deformed limb,. . .” (Lev. 21:18, NASB).
The list continues.
Just like the woman with the issue of blood:
“Now if a woman has a discharge of her blood many days, not at the period of her menstrual impurity, or if she has a discharge beyond that period, all the days of her impure discharge she shall continue as though in her menstrual impurity; she is unclean. ‘Any bed on which she lies all the days of her discharge shall be to her like her bed at menstruation; and everything on which she sits shall be unclean, like her uncleanness at that time. ‘Likewise, whoever touches them shall be unclean and shall wash his clothes and bathe in water and be unclean until evening. ‘When she becomes clean from her discharge, she shall count off for herself seven days; and afterward she will be clean.” (Lev. 15:25-28).
Each story is about a greater awakening and healing.
So Yeshua asked the blind man a curious question: “What do you want Me to do for you?” (Mark 10:51). It seems like a bizarre question to ask a blind beggar. Isn’t it apparent that he would want to see? Do we want to see? Do we have an unclean area that needs to be healed? Are we crying out in the midst of the crowds around us who are yelling (be quiet)?
Do we see His beautiful moon, can we smell His fragrant flower.
Bartimaeus says, “Yeshua, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
He was begging alms. Alms is the word for mercy.
I need mercy!
Inkfish has an interesting article on sight and smell. Can you smell the moon?
And he said, “Lord, I want to regain my sight!” And Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight; your faith has made you well.” Immediately he regained his sight and began following Him, glorifying God; and when all the people saw it, they gave praise to God” (Luke 18:41-43).
Both stories deal with spiritual blindness.
Who is our Father?
How does His title differ from Timeaus?
What good things does He offer?
May we cry out to the Son of David to heal our sight and smell and to allow Him to crush us to the point a beautiful aroma comes forth that is pleasing to Him. (2 Corinthians 2:15 ESV) “For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing. . .” (Song of Solomon 2:13 ESV) “The fig tree ripens its figs, and the vines are in blossom; they give forth fragrance. Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come away.”
In the book of Mark, chapter 8, there is a blind man, and Yeshua spits on his eyes. He sees men as trees.
In Parashat Shoftim, we learn that men are as trees.
“When you lay siege to a city for a long time, making war against it to capture it, you are not to destroy its trees by swinging an axe at them. For from them you may eat, so you shall not chop them down. For is the tree of the field human, that it should enter the siege before you? 20 You may destroy and chop down only the trees that you know are not trees for food, so that you may build siege equipment against the city that is making war with you until its downfall” (Deuteronomy 20:19-20, TLV). When translated it says, “For man is a tree of the field.” We, as trees, are known by our fruit.
An interesting tidbit was shared with me by my sister. We recently bought a house, and the owners told us we had a persimmon tree on the property. My sister said, “You can cut open their seeds and inside will be a knife, a fork, or a spoon.” What? Yes, and it’s supposed to inform us of how bad of a winter we will have. The folklore says that a spoon pattern inside the seeds indicates there will be lots of snow to shovel, a fork pattern inside the seeds indicates the winter will be mild with good eating, and a knife pattern inside the seeds indicates the winter will be cold with cutting winds. My point is, our fruit has a seed inside. It’s either good or bad. The fruit of the spirit is 9 items. Just as it takes 9 months for a baby to develop in the womb, these 9 are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
May The KING of GLORY spit on our eyes. May he lay His nail-scarred hands over our vision. May our candles be scented like sweet perfume in a dark world. May our trees have fruit so bountiful that our branches are weighed down to the ground! May His Holy Spirit blow away any scent of a corpse! I’m going to wrap this up with a passage from Isaiah that makes my mouth water and my eyes see something glorious in the distance.
Is it not yet just a little while
Before Lebanon will be turned into a fertile field,
And the fertile field will be considered as a forest?
On that day the deaf will hear words of a book,
And out of their gloom and darkness, the eyes of the blind will see.
The afflicted also will increase their gladness in the LORD,
And the needy of mankind will rejoice in the Holy One of Israel” (Isaiah 29:17-19).
I watched a show years ago on TBN where a woman gave her testimony, and at the end of the show, the host wanted to pray for Abba to raise her up out of a wheelchair. She said, “That’s great; I’ll take any prayers I can get, but pray for my heart to be right, pray for me to forgive quickly and be used for his glory.” I’m paraphrasing, but I never forgot her; her name is Joni.
When I think about Joni Eareckson Tada, my heart wants to burst. A teenage dive into shallow water goes wrong. “She suffered a fracture between the fourth and fifth cervical levels and became a quadriplegic (or tetraplegic), paralyzed from the shoulders down.”
A woman with no ability to use her arms has written over 40 books.
A golden ticket!
“Want to change the world? There’s nothing to it.” Willy Wonka.
Back in the day, Joni learned to write with a pen between her teeth and paint with a brush there as well. For me to list all her accomplishments and works would take up this whole blog post, but I’ll share a few.
Tada founded Joni and Friends in 1979, an organization to “accelerate Christian ministry in the disability community” throughout the world. In 2007 the Joni and Friends International Disability Center in Agoura Hills, California, was established. The Joni and Friends International Disability Center runs a multi-faceted non-profit covering a number of program outlets. The longest running program is “Joni and Friends Radio” and can be heard each weekday on over 1,000 broadcast outlets. Tada also records a one-minute radio broadcast, “Diamonds in the Dust,” that airs daily. Other Joni and Friends programs include Family Retreats (a camp/retreat experience for families affected by disability), Wounded Warrior Getaways (which offer a similar experience for families of Wounded Warriors), and Wheels for the World (collects manual wheelchairs and other mobility devices which are refurbished by volunteers in prison restoration shops then shipped overseas where the wheelchairs are fitted by physical therapists to people in developing nations).”
What would possess a person to help so many suffering souls? What would cause a person to refurbish wheelchairs and help wounded warriors?
Another wounded warrior!
A diamond in the dust.
She could have wallowed in pity and defeat, but what amazing accomplishments she has acquired while running her race to get the gold. Her paintings and words help heal many who walk upright and use hands and feet and limbs that work perfectly! She is running even though she cannot stand.
I NEVER THOUGHT MY LIFE COULD BE
ANYTHING BUT CATASTROPHE
BUT SUDDENLY I BEGIN TO SEE
A BIT OF GOOD LUCK FOR ME
‘CAUSE I’VE GOT A GOLDEN TICKET
I’VE GOT A GOLDEN TWINKLE IN MY EYE
I NEVER HAD A CHANCE TO SHINE
NEVER A HAPPY SONG TO SING
BUT SUDDENLY HALF THE WORLD IS MINE
WHAT AN AMAZING THING
‘CAUSE I’VE GOT A GOLDEN TICKET.”
“The Lord restored the fortunes of Job when he prayed for his friends, and the Lord increased all that Job had twofold. Then all his brothers and all his sisters and all who had known him before came to him, and they ate bread with him in his house; and they consoled him and comforted him for all the adversities that the Lord had brought on him” (Job 42:10-11, NASB).
May He restore us. May we use our teeth, our thumbs, ears, every part of our body that will function because all the parts of the body joined together is like a well oiled machine.
The picture above is a cabin built out of refurbished wood from my grandpa and grandma Green’s home. It was built on their land, and I love it.
I entered this particular poem in a contest a few months back but did not win. However, I enjoyed writing it, and since my husband and I just moved into our new home, with the lights of Hanukkah shining brightly, it seemed like a good time to post it. I hope you enjoy it!
Even the quilts were tired here.
The bedraggled mattress sagged like an old man’s baggy trousers.
The tile floors were worn, and the grout had crept away little by little with every sweep.
The stairs hung like a sunken ship,
it’s stepping too exhausted to hold up feet.
The chairs, with their feeble legs, refused to offer any bones a place to sit.
The walls held each other in an embrace that looked like men coming home from battle.
One huff and one puff from the wolf would collapse the rooms like a cardboard box
still, the house hung on for dear life.
Rumples and cracks filled corners like spider webs.
The ceilings, with their age spots and vein lines, gave way to the constant dripping of tears that needed proper patching.
Pipes coughed up hairballs but never found the strength to feel a river run through them again.
The windows plucked their bushy eyebrows by shedding the moth-eaten clothes that covered their eyes. The sun had given up trying to shine through their glass panes coated in grime.
The front door hung on one hinge, swaying to the sound of the mulberry trees mournful refrains from the yard.
The foundation raised up in a few places, trying to gasp for a breath of strength but never falling back into place—stuck in passing.
The cupboards echoed with emptiness, no longer a place where little hands grasped the delicacies hidden on shelves.
No more little feet were running to greet its arms.
The shades closed their eyes, and the chimney stopped its breath.
And the dilapidated old house, board by board, was falling to its death.
The autopsy revealed it had died of a lonely heart.
One day some men came.
The house straightened his torso as best he could and attempted to hold the beams and the boards for the men’s girth and weight.
One young man looked familiar.
As if the walls held bits of his laughter,
Smudges of his fingers and words soaked in plaster
Yes, the house had felt his presence. He was sure of it now.
Another man yelled, “Shall we bulldoze it and throw the wood in the fire?”
Another mouthed, “Yeah, doesn’t look like there is much left here to savage.”
The house gathered all his strength and mouthed an exhausted, “no.”
The following week a young man in a truck took the bones and stacked each limb; even the stair rail was placed neatly in the bed of the pick-up.
“Where are you taking me?” the disjointed pieces asked.
Shiplap, and refurbishing the old with the new, and the tired house straightened its shoulders as each piece was nailed in place. Each limb was given a new anchor to hold.
Once again was heard the sound of tiny feet, a bark, a yell, a chimney sweep–music and laughter, and chatter galore.
The old house felt as useful here with his new friends as before.
The windows needed no scrubbing. The stairs were sturdy and straight, and the stars danced on the roof with the sound of rain.
It’s like a dream, thought the house as he looked around. Freshly coated paint and shiny new floors. No mildew, no spiders, no rotten floors. No broken-down bedding or sheets with stains and the old boards embraced the books on the shelf, the scent of babies and freshly baked breads.
Suddenly, the front door opened, sturdy and straight adorned with a brass knocker, and from the front yard, a new maple tree waved as the new owners invited their guests to enter the threshold.
“I love what you’ve done with the place! Using grandpa and grandma Green’s wood from the old homestead was a magnificent idea!”
And the chairs in the kitchen straightened their backs as the children sat down to enjoy a meal. The adults held their glasses up for a toast, “May peace, joy, health, kindness, and good fortune live here!”
And the house straightened his posture, and bowed his head and in appreciation said