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Narrow Minded

(#271 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
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And when they had preached the good news to that city and made many disciples, they returned to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch, strengthening the souls [mind, will, and emotions] of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, “We must through many tribulations enter the Kingdom of the Mighty One.” (Acts 14:21-22)

When you think of tribulation, think: narrow, tight, closely pressed, distressed, restricted, or even “of straitened circumstances.” These would be the appropriate thought forms that the word “tribulation” is intended to invoke in the Hebrew mindset. In other words, “Let Me strengthen your mind by training you to restrict your choice of thoughts. Let Me teach you the narrow range of thoughts available to the mind being renewed.” It is a limited selection, no veering off to the right or left, but a straight and determined way of thinking. There is One body and One Spirit, just as you were called in One hope of your calling; One Master, One faith, One baptism; One Mighty One and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. (Ephesians 4:4-6) Yes, it is narrow! There is One body with One mind, all having conformed to the mind of Yahweh, conformed to His Holy consciousness.

And why does this teaching and training feel like tribulation? Because tribulation is what you experience as a result of your resistance to the lessons. Tribulation draws its energy from your continual attempts to satisfy personal desire, rather than submit to Yahweh's will. You have often heard the term “Flesh vs. Spirit.” Let the understanding of this penetrate deeply into your thought life. The resistance, which is your own self-will, is the cause of tribulation. And this will never change unless you decrease and Messiah increases in you. Without Him, your natural state would be corrupt forever. In other words, your need to satisfy yourself would dominate your choices every time. This is the antithesis of the limited choices available to the redeemed mind!

Learn this most Holy of patterns. When you “feel” closely pressed and distressed within your thought world, do not run to carnally safe places, those which only preserve the “self,” but rather, allow the Spirit to do a work in you. Consciously remind yourself that when your thoughts are tight and restricted, it is most likely the Spirit working in you. Learn to wait in silence and patience, so tribulation’s perfect work might be accomplished. My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. (James 1:2-4)

Don’t fret, don’t be anxious, and don’t be impetuous! They that wait upon Yahweh shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31) Wait upon Yahweh and let your mind be strengthened.

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Suffer Well

(#270 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
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Yahweh had declared former things from the beginning that He made come to pass, and He had hidden things that He later revealed. All this so you can distinguish His signature from the idols ("self" reliant thoughts) that tempt you. He also knew that you would deal treacherously with His truth, and still He restrained Himself from cutting you off.

Instead, He purifies you in the fire. "See I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction. For My own sake, for My own sake I do this. How can I let myself be defamed [profaned]? I will not yield My glory to another." (Isaiah: 48:10-11)

What it sounds like when you finally understand; when you are finally free!

"Child."

"Yes Father."

"Do you now understand?"

"I believe I do. Can You test me to see?"

"Why do I allow you to suffer?"

"It's the only way Father."

"The only way to do what My child?"

"The only way to remove all idols and any thoughts that oppose You."

"What do you think will happen once the suffering ends child?"

"I will only be able to agree with You Father."

"So, you think your suffering comes from your resistance to do things My way?"

"Yes Father."

"Would you suffer all over again, in order to see the things you see now?"

"A thousand times over Father."

"My dear child, now it’s no longer just a hope and a belief."

"What do you mean Father?"

"Now you are free because you understand. Now you are free because you know Me. You have suffered well."

"Thank you Father."

"Isn't it beautiful?"

"Perfect Father. Simply perfect."

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Feeding Frenzy

(#269 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
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He rules forever by His power. His eyes watch the nations, lest the rebels exalt themselves. (Psalm 66:7) Selah [ponder this]

If it is His power alone that rules all things, then you would do well to consider how it is you have reached any level of success or authority? "And Yahshua came and spoke to them, saying, 'All authority has been given to Me in Heaven and on earth. Go therefore…'" (Matthew 28:18-19) If you have any authority at all, it is because He has passed the mantle to you. "Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you." (Luke 10:19) Therefore, if you’ve reached the “top” having never followed His leading to get there, then by what “power” did you arrive? “Not by might nor by [your own] power, but by My Spirit,” Says Yahweh of hosts. (Zechariah 4:6)

The author of true power, power which never diminishes, only releases such through His Spirit to the righteous (right thinking). Unfortunately, many of you will convince yourselves that you have been “good enough” to deserve His blessings and power. This personal “goodness” is nothing but a byproduct of “self” deception. “There is none righteous, no, not one; There is none who does good, no, not one.” (Romans 3:10, 12) And more so, what does the desire for, or the reliance on, personal power entail? It necessitates the use of tricks and manipulation. If you have “success” and it did not come through His power, then you have hijacked it. And remember, His eyes watch the nations, lest the rebels exalt themselves.

Conversely, if it is the power of Yahweh that has promoted you, then your success will always be accompanied by fruit in your life that has His signature on it: obedience, humility, repentance, and “self” realization. The latter, of course, meaning the realization that the “self” must die to make room for His true power to manifest in you.

What are you feeding on loved one? What desires do you have? Are they rooted and grounded in the perfect life of Yahshua the Messiah? A good way to know is to ask these questions; "Would He have cared about such things?" And, "Would He have done what I did to get them?" There is only one source of power loved one. Everything else is vanity and will be sifted like chaff from amongst the wheat.

Then I looked on all the works that my hands had done and on the labor in which I had toiled; and indeed all was vanity and grasping for the wind. There was no profit under the sun. (Ecclesiastes 2:11)

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Public Figures

(#268 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
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Yahshua’s brothers said to Him, “Leave Galilee and go to Judea, so that Your disciples there may see the works You do. No one who wants to become a public figure acts in secret. Since You are doing these things, show Yourself to the world.” (John 7:3-4) Yahshua chose otherwise.

There is a great line in the movie Gladiator (2000) when General Maximus says to the wicked Roman Emperor, "The time for honoring yourself will soon be at an end." It reminds us of Yahshua’s instructions to “sit down in the lowest place” at the wedding feast in Luke 14. For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted. (Luke 14:11)

Heed His instructions, all who are called to be shepherds and leaders. You are not supposed “take the place of honor” or draw attention to yourself as the central figure. Know when to disappear from the crowds. Even Shaul testified, “Was I crucified for you?” And he was thankful that he had baptized only a few, so that he would not develop followers or draw disciples to himself. (Read 1. Corinthians 1:11-17)

Yahshua actually taught many “controversial” things that made people angry and caused them to leave Him. (Read John 6:43-66) From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more (v. 66). The reason they left was because of His “hard teachings” (v. 60). The teachings were intended to sift (consciously disrupt) His chosen ones like a winnowing fork sifts wheat on the threshing floor (Matthew 3:12). The very thing that made them flee was that which would have saved their souls.

Why do you expect it to be different for you? Why have you styled your messages to actually tickle ears, rather than pierce the conscience? Are you afraid that the crowds will “walk with you no more?” Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season! Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. (2 Timothy 4:2-4) Do not be enticed to water down the “hard teachings” so you can appeal to the crowd.

Quite the contrary, Yahshua oftentimes sought to remove Himself from the crowds as commanded by His Father. Now when it was day, He departed and went into a deserted place. And the crowd sought Him and came to Him, and tried to keep Him from leaving them; but He said to them, “I must preach the Kingdom of the Mighty One to the other cities also, because for this purpose I have been sent.” (Luke 4:42-44)

Embrace the change and then get ready to guide others to do the same. Never concern yourself for the accolades and praises from men. Look to Yahweh for everything and nothing else will matter. "Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it." (Matthew 7:13-14)

The broad road is for the crowd. The narrow path is the one Yahshua walked. If even He guarded His life as a public figure, what about you? Heed the warning!

“But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.” (Matthew 7:26-27)

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The Master Craft

(#267 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
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Waiting before Yahweh in silence:

Be of great courage! Wait on Yahweh, and He will strengthen your heart (mind)! Wait I say, on Yahweh! (Psalm 27:14)

And to understand this master craft; the waiting, wouldn’t it be prudent to seek the Hebraic roots of what Yahweh intended when He said, “Wait?” Picture this meaning: to “bind,” to “twist,” to “collect.” These are the intended images; and their substance, of course, is spiritual. Many of you might have thought that the instruction is to wait for what you want when, in fact, the physical manifestation of what you want is not the relevant part.

It’s a matter of consciousness loved one, and the waiting has everything to do with receiving light so that the fragments of darkness (ego) slowly dissipate. Receiving the “Son” is like soaking in the “sun” on a cloudless day at the beach, but the “Son's Rays” are far more valuable to your eternal mind.

Getting a spiritual “son tan” takes practice. You can determine how well you have developed your craft by going to a silent place and sitting quietly before Him. Clear your mind and see how long you can do just that. We think you will be very surprised at how little time you can sit in absolute silence, and we mean total silence with no thoughts running through your mind. We think you will be surprised at how quickly you want to make requests and petitions, rather than just bask in His glory, for His good pleasure. You have yet to learn that waiting in silence binds His Spirit and your soul together like two twist ties. It is the collection of His essence into your entire being like sun rays that soak into your skin. Learn to be a master craftsman of His presence. Sit quietly, and if you must, simply repeat His name over and over. Whisper “Yah” when you inhale and “weh” when you exhale. And then as your mind clears just silently think: “Yahweh, Yahweh, Yahweh, Yahweh….”
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Sovereignty

(#266 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
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Your eyes saw my unformed substance; and in Your book, all the days [of my life] were written [preordained], even before one [day] came into existence. (Psalm 139:16)

You have My word. For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says Yahweh, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome. (Jeremiah 29:11) I give you My word to lean on in times when you think, “There’s nothing good about this life. Everything has gone wrong. Life is a mistake.” The hopelessness your mind indulges in is only an illusion loved one. Yes, you can experience a powerful and, at times, seemingly unconquerable oppression, but it is nevertheless an illusion.

If every moment of your life was ordained by Me before you ever lived one day, and if all that I create and establish is “good,” then what allows for illusions? Listen to Me closely My child; it is your unbelief that causes every ounce of strife in your mind, a lack of faith in Me and My word. Plus you must remember that it is through suffering that you are being perfected. He learned obedience through suffering (Hebrews 5:8). He was made perfect through sufferings. (Hebrews 2:10). The pleasure of Yahweh shall prosper in His hand through His suffering (Isaiah 53:10).

If it was the necessary plan for My Son, then you must agree that it is good for you as well. Remember He said to you, "A servant is not greater than his master. If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you." (John 15:20) If you refuse to accept this as the way of your Father in Heaven, your non-conforming mind will stay bound to the ego, and the ego will always end up in thoughts of depravity and death, hence the illusion!

So, today I speak to you to bring healing and with that healing, joy for the life you live. And the “life you live” can be summed up in the “thoughts you think!” As My prophets always do, I call for you to repent; repent of your wrong thinking. Wrong thoughts always lead to wrong actions.

How many times do you witness in My Torah of love (thought instructions) that, on your own, you cannot do what is required. But, I stepped in on your behalf and empowered you to do it. I gave you a renewed heart (Ezekiel 36:26). I Am Sovereign over your sins as well as your spiritual triumphs loved one; and your sins have always been part of My process of transformation. Every single thought is either the manifestation of sin or Spirit. Either way, everything was written in My book long before you existed. Taking each thought captive means repenting of the sinful ones and rejoicing over the spiritual ones I placed in you. This is how the mind transforms until you can no less than say, “It’s a good life; Yahweh has been so merciful to me. It’s a good life!”

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Restoring Hebrew Roots To Christians
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For Christians Seeking Knowledge Of Their Hebraic Roots…