Saturday, April 02, 2005

Streams in the desert....the journey back to first love

"She doesn't believe that I gave her grain, new wine, and olive oil. I gave her plenty of silver and gold, but she used it to make statues of Baal. That is why I will take back my grain when it has ripened and my new wine when it's in season. I will take away the wool and the linen that I gave her to cover her naked body. I will show her naked body to her lovers, and no one will rescue her from my power. I will put an end to all her celebrations: her annual festivals, her New Moon Festivals, her weekly worship days-all her appointed festivals. I will destroy her grapevines and fig trees. She said that they were gifts from her lovers. I will turn her vineyards into a forest, and wild animals will devour them. I will punish her for all the times she burned incense as an offering to other gods-the Baals. She put on her rings and jewelry, and she chased after her lovers. She forgot me," declares the LORD. "That is why I'm going to win her back. I will lead her into the desert. I will speak tenderly to her. I will give her vineyards there. I will make the valley of Achor [Disaster] a door of hope. Then she will respond as she did when she was young, as she did when she came out of Egypt. "On that day she will call me her husband," declares the LORD. "She will no longer call me her master. I won't allow her to say the names of other gods called Baal. She will never again call out their names. "On that day I will make an arrangement with the wild animals, the birds, and the animals that crawl on the ground. I will destroy all the bows, swords, and weapons of war, so people can live safely. "Israel, I will make you my wife forever. I will be honest and faithful to you. I will show you my love and compassion. I will be true to you, my wife. Then you will know the LORD. "On that day I will answer your prayers," declares the LORD. "I will speak to the sky, it will speak to the earth, and the earth will produce grain, new wine, and olive oil. You will produce many crops, Jezreel. I will plant my people in the land. Those who are not loved I will call my loved ones. Those who are not my people I will call my people. Then they will say, 'You are our God!'"
Hosea 2:8 -23

"In the struggle we all live -between fear and freedom - there is a force, a love, that is stronger than us." (Jean Vanier)

"God will bring us into true freedom, and use us to set others free as well. We have gone to His house. We have experienced His Presence. But it is not until He comes to our house, to where we live, and our heart is touched by the Holy Spirit, that we more fully enter into our proper place of freedom in God. That is why it is good to do nothing before that time.But, once freedom invades our spirit, nothing less will do. Freedom comes in stages. God will first deliver our head, then our heart, and finally our hands from the domination of legalistic religion":

1. Romans 12:2 "Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind." We get the idea. We see that it is possible. And scary as it may be, we receive new insights and begin to think outside of the religious box in which we have lived.
2. Then He touches our heart, our feelings, and our frozen emotions. We feel as we have never felt before. God is jealous over our heart. Sometimes emotional loyalty can keep us in prison, but He does not want us dominated by any person, or system. He wants us to sing the song of the heart set free.
3. Finally, He frees our hands to flow in who we are and what we are called to do. We walk into liberty. Hallelujah!
(Ken R. Anderson, excerpt from "If the Shoe Fits, wear It")

Come break the chains, the chains that hinder love
all that remains of yester year
Come break the chains, the chains that pull me down
come break the chains and draw me near
Let your fire burn consuming me
Let your jealous flame come take away everything
Let your fire burn consuming me
Let your jealous flame come write your name apon my heart
until all that remains is the light of your countanence
and I will be satisfied when I awaken as a lover of you.
I want to be free from everything that keeps me from loving you!
(Misty Edwards- Eternity)

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