sovereign

Everything In-between {ex29:19-20}

exodus-devotion-everything-in-between-poem.png

In the end,
what You will have of me is
all
or
nothing.

There is no in-between.

Either I will be consecrated
head to toe,
my entire being
holy ground,
or
I will be a vast, open
wasteland—
a demonic haunt.

There is no in-between.

For You
(the indwelling universe-God)
will not be relegated to
a shelf
a building or
a weekly (better-not-be-longer-than-an-hour) visit.

You will either dwell
in the midst
or
You will be completely
banished from the land.

There is no in-between.

You are uninterested
in negotiation
or compromise.

Come, then,
and take no prisoners—
except me, that is.
Captivate me
head to toe
and all that's
in-between.

Come, Divine Intruder:
Make me
holy ground.

 

God dissolves fear.

God dissolves fear.

Nehemiah 4

Well, some people just didn’t want that Jerusalem wall rebuilt! "When Sanballat, Tobiah, the Arabs, the Ammonites and the people of Ashdod heard that the repairs to Jerusalem’s walls had gone ahead and that the gaps were being closed, they were very angry." (vs 7) First, they had tried to intimidate the people with insults and threats. When that didn’t stop the work, they plotted to attack the people who were rebuilding the wall.

God is a safe place.

God is a safe place.

2 Chronicles 22

And once again, we find ourselves back to a familiar story from the time of the kings in Israel: "When Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she proceeded to destroy the whole royal family of the house of Judah. But Jehosheba... took Joash son of Ahaziah and stole him away from among the royal princes who were about to be murdered and put him and his nurse in a bedroom... [Jehosheba] hid the child from Athaliah so she could not kill him. He remained hidden with them at the temple of God for six years while Athaliah ruled the land." (vs 10-12)

God is the greatest.

God is the greatest.

2 Chronicles 2

After Solomon became king, the first thing he set out to do was build a temple for God. As you might remember from the story in 1 Kings, Solomon enlisted the help of Hiram king of Tyre for building materials and skilled craftsmen. He wanted the temple to be the most glorious, most elaborate sanctuary ever built for a god on the face of the Earth—and indeed it was.

God reigns above and beyond the kingdoms of this world.

God reigns above and beyond the kingdoms of this world.

1 Chronicles 9

This was one of those days when I didn’t get much beyond the first verse of the chapter (even though I kept reading until the end). "All Israel was listed in the genealogies recorded in the book of the kings of Israel and Judah. They were taken captive to Babylon because of their unfaithfulness." (vs 1)

God can use anyone.

God can use anyone.

2 Kings 12

This chapter recounts the tale of Joash—a king of Judah who did some very good things, such as rebuilding the temple, but apparently didn’t end up so well. His downfall started after the death of Jehoiada, the high priest: "Joash did what was right in the eyes of the Lord all the years Jehoiada the priest instructed him. The high places, however, were not removed; the people continued to offer sacrifices and burn incense there." (vs 2-3)

God cannot be managed.

God cannot be managed.

2 SAMUEL 6

Right off the bat, I must confess that I owe a debt of gratitude for the way I look at Uzzah’s story to Eugene Peterson’s insights in his book Leap Over a Wall. If you’d like to read more about the life of David, I highly recommend picking up that book. It helped me see a lot of things in a new way—including the story of Uzzah.

God is working out His plan, regardless of the circumstances.

God is working out His plan, regardless of the circumstances.

JUDGES 16

Samson, Samson. What can you say about this guy? He was so stupid. He was so blind—both figuratively and (later on) literally. He was singled out to be God’s leader in Israel, but he couldn’t seem to keep to his Nazirite vow. When he wasn’t marrying heathen women, he was sleeping with prostitutes. He did nearly everything wrong, including the big one—finally telling Delilah the secret of his strength. Why would he do that? Had he become so narcissistic that he believed his strength lay within himself and not in God?

God is a mighty man o' war.

God is a mighty man o' war.

JOSHUA 10

I was thinking today about my old college choir days, and one of my favorite pieces that we sang was called Elijah Rock. There was a line in that song that we women sang with a valiant, chesty tone: "My God is a mighty man o’ war." I always loved that part of the song, and reading today’s chapter from Joshua brought it right to my mind. So, I thought I would muse for a few minutes on this mighty man o’ war who is our God.

God cannot be manipulated.

God cannot be manipulated.

EXODUS 10

I know I’ve read the stories of the plagues in detail at least a dozen times in my adult life. But as I write these daily blogs, I am once again struck by Pharaoh’s audacity. Once again, in chapter 10, it’s his officials who are trying to talk some sense into him: "Pharaoh’s officials said to him, 'How long will this man be a snare to us? Let the people go, so that they may worship the Lord their God. Do you not yet realize that Egypt is ruined?'" (vs 7)

God is not greedy.

God is not greedy.

GENESIS 47

So, what do we do when confronted with the reality that we are "not our own"? We were created by a God who rules over the entire universe. Everything came from Him, and everything belongs to Him... even our very lives. Every breath we take is a gracious gift from His hand. Without Him, nothing would be. That can be a somewhat daunting reality, huh?