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A Year’s Journey Through the Word of God

I am a woman who has been changed by the Word of God! This is my 20th year of reading through The Bible, and I simply desire to encourage others who have, and others who might, join me on this daily journey! It is indeed THE JOURNEY OF A LIFETIME!

Our Family in January 2018
Our Family in November 2019

I have been blessed beyond my wildest dreams! I have an amazing husband of nearly 36 years, three beautiful adult children who have married spouses who love Jesus as much as they do, and three precious grand babies with one on the way! I am a Worship Leader (for over 35 years now) and Women’s Ministry Director/Bible Teacher. Teaching and sharing God’s Word and leading people into the very Presence of a Holy God is my great joy and privilege!

“The GLORY of GOD is DANGEROUS! Don’t chase Him if you don’t want Him!”

I woke up especially “hungry” Monday morning.

No; not hungry for food. Hungry for more of God. Before my feet hit the floor, I asked God for MORE! More of His Presence. More of Himself.

I had the sweetest time in His Presence as I studied His Word, just beginning the Book of Leviticus once again. Oh how I have grown to love this Book throughout the years as God began to reveal to me how it points to His Holiness.

However, I was still “hungry.”

But then I remembered that my friend, Mary Styer, had sent me a sermon by Tommy Tenney. Remember him? He’s the guy who wrote “God Chasers” and “One Night with the King” that was then turned into a great movie on the life of Esther from the Bible. He was speaking at her daughter’s church in Dallas just this past weekend.

I decided that I would listen as I walked.

Folks!

Oh! My! Goodness!! The truths found right here are exactly what I needed! These are some extremely deep truths.

Allow me share what I learned on Monday as I walked and listened and paused to speak notes into my phone.

His very first words were these…

“The GLORY of GOD is DANGEROUS! Don’t chase God if you don’t want Him!”

I was blown away! Yes! “Your glory God is what our hearts long for; to be overcome by Your Presence, Lord.”

Then he went on to say things that met me right at the point of my need and desire as I wait on Him, seeking His will and His way in this season of waiting, resting, and “being still.” I pray that his anointed words speak to you as well.

“You are approaching something…

God wants to turn your journey into your dwelling. He is ready to transition you. He’s going to take you to places you have never dreamed of; but you’re going to have to have faith and you’re going to have to be generous.

If you are not capable of recognizing the enemy, you will become a casualty.

I love this—You will learn things while you’re “circling” that you will cling to when you’re dwelling. (The time in Exodus when they are wondering in the desert.) I need to hear and say that again:

You will learn things while you’re “circling” that you will cling to while you’re dwelling.

God waits until your maturity matches your promise…His promise for your future!

Important things to recognize when you’re on a journey of resting…

1. Remember, you are not alone!

2. Accept the fact that much of life is spent waiting.

3. Waiting on Jesus is never wasted time. “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings like eagles! They shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength!”

4. Use the time for preparation. David was not crowned King when he was anointed King. He had to wait 15 years. (This is something I’ve studied personally for years. Oh Father, Teach me what you want me to learn in this, Lord!)

5. Continue to have hope in the waiting…

6. While waiting, don’t let your mind go to unhealthy places! When you start thinking wrong, you’ll start acting wrong.

7. Stand on the promises of God and His Word.

I pray that these truths bless you as much as they blessed me! I was “hungry” for MORE of Jesus, and He supplied MUCH MORE than I expected or imagined! He always does that, doesn’t He?

For “Our God is ABLE to do exceedingly, abundantly MORE than we could ever ask or imagine!” Ephesians 3:20.

Genesis 1-2:17

In the beginning

In the beginning.

In the very beginning.

Before there was time.

Before there was anything…

There was God!

“In the beginning GOD created the heavens and the earth.”

Genesis 1:1

God was designing and creating the heavens and the earth—this planet we call home. God is, of course, the Master-designer! It is all His; yet also a gift to all of us. As this grand story of God’s Word begins to unfold, we simply cannot miss that it’s all about God and His great love toward us!

As I’m walking early this morning, I see the sun bursting through the clouds… and I see God!

As I plant my feet on solid dirt…I smell the clean ground and can both see and feel God!

As I breathe in fresh air, and walk and run…I see and experience God!

He is here!

In the beginning…God!

As we look at every verse and detail of these first two chapters in Genesis, let’s not miss that this is Creator-God, doing what He loves to do most—reaching out to you!

He had a plan from the beginning… And you were a part of that plan!

I love that from the beginning, God shows us that He is a God of order and detail. I need a God like that! I need a God who is in control and Sovereign, because otherwise, I know I will certainly make a mess of my life!

So, this day, rather than focus on all of the many and vast theological details of these opening passages of Genesis, I choose to simply bask in the glory of His Presence, thankful for a God who is not only Creator-God, but who is also Abba—Daddy—to me and to all of us!

Finally, let’s not miss the importance of REST as we look at Genesis 2:2.

“By the seventh day, God had finished the work He had been doing; so in the seventh day He rested from all His work. And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because in it he rested from all the work of creating that He had done.”

Genesis 2:2

If God took time to rest, think of how important it is for us to enjoy a sabbath rest each week. “Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10.

When we are “still”—

When we stop—

When we rest—

When we focus on God—

We see and experience God—and He is certainly more than enough!

Nehemiah 13

Nehemiah 13

https://momentbymomentdotblog.wordpress.com/2021/01/01/nehemiah-13/
— Read on momentbymomentdotblog.wordpress.com/2021/01/01/nehemiah-13/

As I come to the end of another year of Reading God’s Word from cover to cover, I am so incredibly grateful for a God who continues to speak.

Today I moved the ribbon marker in my Daily Bible for the 365th time this year. This final day of 2021, I had the pleasure of reading these glorious passages–the final chapter of Nehemiah, the final chapter of Revelation, and Psalm 150!

My heart is full! I have a great big smile on my face as I write—I am filled with great peace. God’s Word continues to light my path, order my steps, and provides wisdom and direction that I need each and every day. I can hardly believe this concludes 21 years of daily reading God’s Word. I can’t wait to begin again tomorrow morning.

“Be still and know that I am God…” “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.”

Job 40 – 42

Hearing the rest of the story…concluding the Book of Job

I have to be honest with you. I had begun to post this early this morning, and God said, “No. Not yet.” He took me in a different direction than I had originally planned…and I am so grateful!

“Then Job answered the Lord, “I am unworthy—how can I reply to you?
I put my hand over my mouth…I spoke once, but have no answer—twice, but I will say no more.”

Job 40:4-5

Next to this verse in my Bible, I have written these words…

”Job finally gets it!”

But honestly, does He?

The more I study this passage, I don’t think he “gets it” quite yet.

It isn’t until he hears the “REST OF THE STORY…”

It isn’t until he hears ALL of what God has to say that he FINALLY GETS IT. (As God continues to speak powerfully in chapters 40 and 41.)

Once we have been confronted by the ALL-POWERFUL, ALL-KNOWING, HOLY, SOVEREIGN, ALMIGHTY GOD…we can never be the same. The more we recognize God’s Holiness, the more we see our sin.

We can know a lot ABOUT God and think we understand Him and His ways. But it isn’t until we we come face to face with God, and REALLY SEE HIM, in all of His glory, that we are broken before Him. We see our sin and are humbled at the mere thought of Him even taking a moment to hear our pleas.

We are CHANGED! Our lives are TRANSFORMED once we finally SEE GOD IN ALL OF HIS GLORY in the midst of our pain. He becomes MORE REAL and PERSONAL and we are, as young people say today… “SHOOK!”

Job says…

“My ears had heard of you, but now MY EYES HAVE SEEN YOU! Therefore, I despise myself and REPENT in dust and ashes.”

I am weeping as I type those words. I am weeping because I see my sin. I see my pride. I see how completely broken I am…and what a MESS I AM apart from God’s mending! Apart from God’s Grace!

“My ears had heard of you, but now my eyes have seen you. Therefore, I despise myself and REPENT in dust and ashes.”

Job 42:5

This truth leads me to worship…

“All that thrills my soul is Jesus!
He is more than life to me.
And the fairest of ten thousand
In His blessed life I see!”

So, as we come to the end of this great story and book, we can’t help but ask… “So what was Job’s sin? Why did he then need to confess and repent?”

As we know, Job had done nothing wrong to “deserve” all that he was going through. He did not experience all of this pain because of some specific sin, as his three friends kept trying to convey. On the contrary, Job was a righteous man and God was proud of Job. Remember, God allowed Satan to tempt and test him, saying “Have you considered my servant, Job? There is no one on earth like him. He is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.”

God had “allowed” all of this to happen to Job.

So what, then, was Job’s sin as he repented?

First of all, we all sin every single day—knowingly or unknowingly. So surely he had sin to confess.

But I believe Job was ultimately confessing the sin of PRIDE. He also was questioning God’s integrity and justice.

Look at Job 40:8 where God asks Job, “Would you discredit my justice? Would you condemn me to justify yourself?”

This was the flaw. This is where he stepped over the line.

However, we see Job’s righteousness as he ultimately REPENTS and humbles himself before Almighty, Sovereign, Holy, Powerful, Perfect God.

God then restores EVERYTHING TO JOB and then some!!

“The Lord made him prosperous again and gave him twice as much as he had before.”

“The Lord blessed the latter part of Job’s life more than the first.” Job 42:12

I love how God sets the records straight with Job’s three friends. God says, “I am angry with you because you have not spoken of me what is right as my servant Job has.” Do you just LOVE IT?! Job was right all along in reference to these so-called “friends!”

He then tells them to sacrifice a burnt offering and he has Job pray for them! Talk about humbling!

This incredible BOOK and story concludes with these beautiful words…

“After this, Job lived 140 years and saw his children and their children down to the 4th generation!! And so he died, old and full of years!”

Job 42:16

Oh doesn’t that just make you want to SING?!!

Job 38 – 39

The LORD speaks… “Then the Lord answered Job out of the storm!”

Job…LISTEN UP!

Get ready, Job! God is about to tell you a thing or two…and you are going to sit there and LISTEN!

I don’t know about you; but when I get to this part, my heart always pounds a little harder and faster!

Can you just hear the deep resounding, almost deafening VOICE OF GOD…

“WHO IS THIS THAT DARKENS MY COUNSEL WITH WORDS WITHOUT KNOWLEDGE?”

“BRACE YOURSELF LIKE A MAN; I WILL QUESTION YOU AND YOU SHALL ANSWER ME!”

Yikes!!

You SHALL answer me!

Get ready, Job! Here it comes!

But before we hear what God is going to say to Job, let’s remember this: While God is a God of LOVE, He is also a God of WRATH and JUDGEMENT. He is a God of JUSTICE!

I think we rather like to think of God in a lopsided way. We only want to see His love and mercy and grace. We don’t like to think of His Judgement and Wrath. Well, that just isn’t “warm and fuzzy” enough for us. That makes us a little uncomfortable.

Yes, God is indeed a God of love and compassion, filled with mercy and grace that we do not deserve. Yet because of His perfect Holiness, God is also a God of Justice and Wrath and Judgement. Let’s not ever forget that!

There is an “ENOUGH” with God!

Think about The Flood! God said, “ENOUGH!” and destroyed the world because of the wickedness that He saw over the entire face of the earth.

Think about Sodom and Gomorrah. God said, “ENOUGH” as He destroyed that wicked city even destroying Lot’s wife because she looked back longing for that city that had become so “dear” to her.

Don’t ever think that you or I can walk in sin and wickedness unscathed:

“Beware, your sins will find you out!” Numbers 32:23

“Do not be deceived! God is not mocked! Whatsoever a man sows, that shall he also reap!”

Galatians 6:7

But guess what?

Ultimately, we should be grateful for those verses! We should want to be “found out” so God can sweep in and rescue us! There is a purpose in God’s discipline. He is always preserving a remnant. He wants to DRAW US CLOSE. He always wants what’s best for us. As my sweet daddy always says, “God reserves THE BEST to those who leave the choice to Him.” Oh yes! So true!!

We need to see God in the beauty of ALL of His MANY attributes and characteristics. In them, we find His complete PERFECTION!

Now, on to what God has to say to Job…and I just LOVE IT!!

Do you hear the sarcasm in God’s “VOICE?”

I can hardly stand it! I love it! Keep going, God! I want to hear more!!

“Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundations? Tell me if you understand. Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it?”

Job 38:4-7

Listen as God continues…

“Have you ever given orders to the morning, or shown the dawn it’s place?” Job 38:12

“Have you entered the storehouses of snow, or seen the storehouse of hail?” Job 38:22

“Do you send the lightning bolts on their way? Do they report to you, “Here we are?”Job 38:35

“Who provides food for the raven when it’s young cry out to God and wander for lack of food?” Job 38:41

Don’t you just love it?!

God goes on to ask questions about the wild animals and birds that He knows so intimately, and Job obviously knows nothing about!

Then God concludes with this earth- shaking question:

“WILL THE ONE WHO CONTENDS WITH THE ALMIGHTY CORRECT HIM? LET HIM WHO ACCUSES GOD ANSWER HIM!”

Job 40:2

Note the exclamation points!! They are not mine. They are GOD’s!

I don’t know about you; but I don’t EVER want to hear those words directed at me!

However, while the power in that question evokes a bit of fear; to be honest, it is also comforting. I NEED a God like that! I’m grateful for a God who will “pull me up by my bootstraps” and set me straight, lest I go too far!

I have often asked God to “keep me on a short leash.”

I know me! I know how desperately I NEED God’s direction and guidance and wisdom in my life every single moment of every single day.

Tomorrow we shall see Job’s humble response…

Whew! I NEED Job to be humble after all of this!

Job 35 – 37

Elihu—God’s Defense Attorney!

While Elihu speaks, in essence to “defend God,” he also proclaims many incredible and glorious attributes of our omnipotent God.”

Wow! I am so thankful for Elihu! His words are indeed full of truth and power, and are like a healing ointment that covers a wound, especially after hearing from Job’s other “friends” for so many days.

“Bear with me a little longer and I will show you that there is more to be said in God’s behalf.”

I love that Elihu is defending God!

You are a great DEFENSE ATTORNEY, Elihu, and we are so thankful for you!

“Men cry out under a load of oppression; they plead for relief from the arm of the powerful. But no one says, “Where is God my Maker, who gives songs in the night.”

Job 35:9-10

I love this verse! God has been so precious to GIVE ME SONGS IN THE NIGHT when I was struggling several years ago. It is something I will never forget! He graciously and tenderly sang songs over me because He knew I needed it. Oh what a compassionate, loving Father!

“He is wooing you from the jaws of distress to a spacious place free from restriction…to the comfort of your table laden with choice food.”

Job 36:16

Do you again see the tenderness of our God? Elihu is, in one moment, showing us God’s compassion, and then the next, His power! Listen to all of these truths!

“God is mighty, but does not despise men. He is mighty and firm in His purpose. He does not take His eyes off the righteous.” Job 36:5-7

“God is exalted in power! Who is a teacher like him? Who has prescribed his ways for him or said to him, “You have done wrong!” Remember to extol His work which men have praised in song. All mankind has seen it; men gaze on it from a far. How great is God – – beyond our understanding! The number of His years is past finding out.”

Job 36:22-26

“Who can understand how He spreads out the clouds, how He thunders from his pavilion? See how He scatters his lightning about Him. He fills His hands with lightning and commands it to strike its mark. His thunder announces the coming storm. When His voice resounds, He holds nothing back. God’s voice thunders in marvelous ways; He does great things beyond our understanding!”

Do you hear the crescendo in Elihu’s voice! It’s almost like we needed a drum roll to begin as he concludes his closing statements and introduces us to GOD!!

“Listen to this Job: stop and consider God’s wonders. Do you know how God controls the clouds and makes his lightning flash? Do you know how the clouds hang poised, does wonders of him who is perfect and knowledge?”

Job 37:14-16

“Out of the north he comes in golden splendor; God comes in awesome majesty! The Almighty is beyond our reach and exalted in power; in his justice and great righteousness, he does not oppress. Therefore, men revere Him, for does He not have regard for all the wise in heart?” Job 37:22-24

Cue the orchestra!
Drum roll please…
Stand to your feet!
Stand in AWE as the MAKER OF HEAVEN AND EARTH BEGINS TO SPEAK…

Tomorrow… 😊

Job 32 – 34 and Psalm 18

Astounding truths from Job’s youngest and wisest friend, Elihu, along with a beautiful picture of God—our Abba Father—from Psalm 18! “He stoops down to make me great!” He is both Mighty Warrior & Abba, Daddy!

Job 32—The young & wise Elihu begins to speak.

As we look at today’s passage in Job, we find the young and wise Elihu, speaking. He actually begins in chapter 32. He is angry with Job for justifying himself rather than God. He says that he has waited silently before speaking—

“Age should speak first; advanced years should teach wisdom. But it is the spirit in a man, the breath of the Almighty, that gives him understanding.”

Job 32:7-8

Yes, Elihu! So true!!

This wise young man has a lot to say and it is worth hearing!

He refutes what Job says and makes a great case!

“You have said in my hearing that you are pure and without sin….but I tell you this is not right, for God is greater than man! God DOES speak!”

Job 33:8-14

I just LOVE Elihu’s boldness!!

“Pay attention, Job! And listen to me! Be silent and I will speak!”

I love that Elihu goes on to defend God!!

We are going to see this truth come from God’s own lips as he later rebukes Job Himself!

“Far be it from God to do evil; from the Almighty to do wrong. It is unthinkable that God would do wrong, that the Almighty would pervert justice. Who appointed him over the earth? Who put him in charge of the whole world?”

Job 34:10-13

Elihu concludes with this statement:

“Job speaks without knowledge; his words lack insight. Oh that Job might be tested to the utmost for answering like a wicked man!” Job 34:35-36

Wow! Such boldness from a young man! Righteous indignation for sure!
I love it!

We will hear more from Elihu tomorrow.

But just you wait!

In a couple of days…[Cue the music…LOUD & THUNDEROUS…]

GOD is going to speak!

“Then THE LORD answered Job out of the storm!”

I love it!!

But I’m getting ahead of myself. That’s not for a couple of days. When we get there, you will LOVE IT, too!

Psalm 18—I just cannot keep silent!

I want to conclude by sharing from today’s reading in Psalms.

I know that in my daily sharing, I am focusing on the Old Testament, and not as much from the passages in the New Testament and Psalms or Proverbs. There is simply so much in each of these passages each day, that I God has led me to keep it shorter and concentrate most of my sharing on the Old Testament.

However, as I read Psalm 18, I feel a little like Elihu, and just cannot keep silent!

It is JUST TOO GOOD!!

“As for God, His way is perfect; the Word of the Lord is flawless. He is a shield for all who take refuge in Him. For who is God besides the Lord? And who is the Rock except our God? It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect. He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; He enables me to stand on the heights. He trains my hands for battle.”

Psalm 18:30-35

Oh how I love this passage!

But it is the final verse that grabbed my heart many years ago when I read it for the first time…

“He stoops down to make me great!”

Psalm 18:35

Do you hear that?

HE STOOPS DOWN TO MAKE ME GREAT!

I remember the first time I ever read that, it blew my mind! Wait! What?!

The God of the Universe stoops down to make ME great?

But isn’t that just like God?

He is our protector! He is our RESCUER! He is our strength and shield!

I also see a picture of a father kneeling down to talk tenderly to his baby girl or little boy.

The father kneels low and picks up that precious toddler in his arms and lifts him high!

Can you see it?

I know this Psalm is focusing on how God arms us for battle. However, while I know my God is MIGHTY TO SAVE; and a MIGHTY WARRIOR…He is also my ABBA…my DADDY who stoops down to pick me up! He is FOR ME and not against me! He is Mighty Warrior dressed for battle…and Tender Father, humble enough to kneel down to lift me up!

Oh what a Savior!!

Job 30 – 31

Job continues to defend himself and perhaps goes too far! When Job begins to say he is BLAMELESS, and pretty much “picks a fight” with God, well, I’m going to stand back, lest the lightning of God’s wrath fall on me as well!

My front living room is my SANCTUARY! The place where I meet with God each morning.

Since I really couldn’t find a great image for today’s chapters in the Book of Job, I decided to take a picture of the room where I meet with The Lord every morning.

This has been my “sanctuary” for nearly 26 years. The sweet corner fireplace is new—a precious Christmas gift from my husband! I am grateful for our home!

Job, who is finally allowed to speak without being interrupted by his “friends,” pours out the depths of his soul. Sometimes it gets a little dicey; and in the end, he goes too far!

Job laments

He begins by lamenting how he is now mocked by men who used to look up to him.

“And now their sons mock me in song; I have become a byword among them. They detest me and keep their distance; they do not hesitate to spit in my face. Now that God has unstrung my bow and afflicted me, they throw off restraint in my presence.”

Job 30:9-11

Then you can hear his DEEP DESPAIR as he says…

“I cry out to You, O God, but You do not answer. I stand up, but You merely look at me!” Job 30:20-21

“My harp is tuned to mourning; and my flute to the sound of wailing.” Job 30:31

Have you been there? A place of desperation where you felt God had abandoned you? I’m pretty sure none of us have been to a place as desperate as Job; but I’m guessing it sure has felt like it.

A broken marriage. The loss of a spouse, or child, or loved one. The loss of a job, or other issues that led to what felt like financial ruin. Painful, unending health realities that never seem to subside. All of these and more can make anyone feel desperately alone.

Job goes too far…

Job had all of these and more at the same time! So we can understand when he questions God. We can even give him a pass for trying to defend himself. But, when Job begins to say he is BLAMELESS, and pretty much “picks a fight” with God, we’ll, I’m going to stand back, lest the lightning of God’s wrath fall on me as well!

Yep, Job goes too far!

He begins by defending himself with specific scenarios:

“I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a girl…”
Job 31:1

This, by the way, is even more honorable than it appears. Job wants to flee the very appearance of evil!

“If my heart has been enticed by a woman, or I have lurked at my neighbors door, then may my wife grind another man’s grain and it may another man sleep with her.” Job 31:9-10

Does God not see my ways and count my every step?” Job 31:4

If I have walked in falsehood or my foot has hurried after deceit, let God weigh me in honest scales and He will know that I am BLAMELESS!” Job 31:5-6

Wow!!

BLAMELESS?!

I don’t think so, Job!!

Job then concludes with many “If-Then” statements that, in the end, and escalate and culminate with this statement that GOES WAY TOO FAR!

“Oh that I had someone to hear me! I sign now my defense—let the ALMIGHTY answer me!” (YIKES!) “Let my accuser put his indictment in writing!”

Job 31:35

Okay…

Wow!

Did you catch that?! He is standing back and saying, “Okay, I ‘rest my case!’ Now, God, it’s your turn! I want to hear what YOU have to say!” (Again, WOW! And YIKES!)

Well, Job, just you wait! Your “accuser” has quite a lot to say to you! But before He speaks, you are going to hear from a wise young man named Elihu, who has been listening to all of this, and is just waiting in the wings to tell you what he really thinks!