Sketch-A-Day

 

The photo below was taken on our cruise to the Caribbeans.   Decided to do a little cartooning of Corinne and myself.

 

539763_3711444389675_937127847_n
Corinne and I

IMG_4347_edited

The above sketch is my participation in the Sketch-A-Day Challenge.

Advertisements

Once Upon an Island

 

The thing hid behind trees and watched as fresh meat disembarked the yacht.  It had been weeks since the last shipment, so the creature could barely contain the blood lust raging within its decomposing body.  The thing growled and pulled against the chains holding him in place.  Its brain could no longer reason.  It only understood his ravenous need for human flesh.  The drive was constant, even after it had feasted, it still hungered. It was never fully satisfied.  It lunged its body again and reached a skeletal hand toward leaves, wafting in the warm tropical breeze.  Only a lone finger-bone  escaped the cover of foliage.  If the “fresh meat” had looked in the direction, at that precise moment, they would have seen the bony finger with its sagging, putrid skin.  Perhaps it would have been their salvation, but perhaps not… as the trees were quite some distance from the yacht.

Four teenagers laughed as they balanced the plank resting upon a weathered pier.  It wasn’t as stable as Kimmie would have liked, so she held tightly to Ted’s hand.  Ted, sensing her fright, gallantly turned his body to welcome his girlfriend safely into his arms.  Kimmie, much smaller than Ted’s athletic frame, felt engulfed within his embrace and she liked the feeling.

Carol, quite the opposite of Kimmie, jumped from the rickety plank and practically landed on Kimmie and Ted.  All three fell together to land in a heap upon the graying boards; luckily, each one had managed to avoid a plethora of jagged splinters.  The wood was old and so the pier quaked from their sudden weight.

A raucous laughter emanated from the heap,savage glow while Mark stood alone on the plank, holding all four backpacks.   Mark, feeling excluded, couldn’t help but wish, Carol, to be more like Kimmie.  What he would give to have her fall into his arms…

Like that would ever happen… thought Mark angrily.

Carol, boisterously called to him, “Hey pretty boy…get down here, already!”

Mark, shrugged off his anger, slowly smiled, and headed toward the laughing heap.  Offering Carol his hand he winked and said, “Yes, I am a pretty boy…and don’t you forget it!”

 

 

…to be continued…

[The preceding has been my  participation in the Sketch-a-Day event and also the  Weekly Horror Tales challenge, of which I host.  If you’re a fan of horror, please join me in this frightful challenge.  Believe me, it would totally make my day!]  [PS- The present horror prompt is as follows:  Write a story about a group of party-goers that sets sail on a yacht for what they believe to be a pleasure cruise. Except the captain was paid to scuttle the ship off an island populated by cannibalistic natives.] 

Gentle Reminders

3wdGKl

Psalms 3:5-8

I can lie down to rest and know that I will wake up,
    because the Lord covers and protects me.
So I will not be afraid of my enemies,
    even if thousands of them surround me.

Lord, get up!
    My God, come rescue me!
If you hit my enemies on the cheek,
    you will break all their teeth.

Lord, the victory is yours!
    You are so good to your people. Selah   

I’m guilty.  When things fall to pieces I try to fix them without considering God.  Finally, when it all goes to hell, I go to God and ask for His help.  As a Christian, why do I do this?

I was guilty of this…again…last night.  I stayed up into the wee hours of night constructing “what-if” scenarios inside my head. The more I tried to solve the problem the more I experienced doubt, fear, and depression.  It felt like I was drowning and desperately reaching for anything to keep me afloat.  Finally, sleep came, but my dreams were riddled with the same doubt and the very same fear.  In the morning, nothing had changed.  I got up, fixed my coffee and worried some more.

Since, in this blog, I’ve been “walking through the book of Psalms,” I sat down, coffee cup in hand and opened my Bible to next verses upon the journey.   In these verses, I find David  also caught within desperate conditions facing an uncertain future.   Immediately I felt kinship.  David, however, handled his problem much different than I  had.  David, unlike me, found rest in trusting God. The King James Version of this story puts it like this, “I laid me down and slept; I awaked; for the Lord sustained me.”  And so in the midst of his trouble, David slept well and awoke the next morning refreshed.

As a Christian, I wonder why  this basic truth so easily escapes me?   I’m saddened by my weakness, but God is never angry with me. He knows I am but human, formed from the dust of the ground.  He gently brings me to his Word and assures my heart by saying, “…just as I was with David…I will also be with you.  Trust me…your salvation belongs to me.”  

What will be the end result?  I don’t know.  Where will this problem lead?  Again, I don’t know…  BUT, there are two things I do know…one-I know God loves me and two-I know He will be my help.   Time and time again He beckons me, “Cast your every care upon me because I care for you…I love you”  (I Peter 5:7) 

When I do…He gives me the very same peace He gave to David thousands of years ago.

My prayer…  

Lord, I’m afraid, but I give you my fear.  I rest in knowing you are in control.  I’m sorry, that in my weakness, I lose sight of this truth.  Thank you for your gentle reminders.  I know you love me and I know you love my family and I know our salvation belongs to you. Thank you for your presence forever within my soul.  Amen.

From Out of the Wilderness

peaster5_1374009c

Psalms 3

Many are they who say of me,
There is no help for him in God.”

I actually have christian friends who believe my prayers dead and they never rise above the rooftop of my house.  Their reasoning for this…since I’m gay, God does not hear my prayers.  The term “gay christian” is, for them, an oxymoron.  When I offer to pray for  these individuals, I’m usually met with silence.

 I know what they’re thinking because I use to be just like them.  Because of a fundamental christian background, I believed God would not hear the prayers of those outside of the “true” faith.   Of course, the fundamental christian faith  was the only true faith.

For example, my grandmother was a devout Jehovah’s Witness; therefore, we as “true Christians” believed God wouldn’t hear or answer her prayers.  I loved her, but I believed according to “God’s Word” her prayers where useless and I took no comfort, whatsoever, in the promise of her prayers.  Today, this makes me extremely sad.  I totally missed out and was robbed of a wonderful  blessing, simply because of my judgmental views of the Bible.  Thank God, I now believe, God  heard her prayers and I’m confident that even now those prayers surround me each day I live.  One day, when I see her again, I will thank her for her prayers.

David, the author of Psalms 3, had the very same problem.  In verse 2 He writes,  Many are they who say of me, “There is no help for him in God.”    David knew there were many who believed him out of God’s will.  Of those, the ones that hurt him the most, was his son, Absalom, and his friend, Hushai.  Absalom desired to overthrow his father and declare himself King of Israel.  (See II Samuel 16:20-19:8)  David fled into the wilderness to hide, and out of his wilderness experience came the words of Psalms 3.

 Always a tenderhearted man David  cried many tears.  Betrayal hurts and even more so when they are friends and family.  What did David do?  In verse 4 David writes, “I cried unto the Lord with my voice, and he heard me…”

That’s exactly what God wants us to do too.  He will hear us just as he heard David.  Only two people can truly know your heart…you and God, so never let anyone judge you and your relationship with Him.  If you have peace with God, who are they to judge!

My Prayer:  Lord, thank you for knowing my heart.  Thank you for the peace you’ve put inside.  Help me not to judge others but rather trust you to work in their hearts just as you have mine.  Amen.

Heavenly Conversations

Psalms 2:8-12

Ask of Me, and I will give You
The nations for Your inheritance,
And the ends of the earth for Your possession.
 You shall break, them with a rod of iron;
You shall dash them to pieces like a potter’s vessel.

 Now therefore, be wise, O kings;
Be instructed, you judges of the earth.
 Serve the Lord with fear,
And rejoice with trembling.
 Kiss the Son, lest He be angry,
And you perish in the way,
When His wrath is kindled but a little.
Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him.

god-seesDo you ever wonder what our conversations will be like in heaven?  I mean, what will we talk about?  Will we spend eternity only talking of religious matters?

As a kid, I use to think heaven would be boring.  Don’t get me wrong, I definitely wanted to go there, because the other place (A-hem)scared the hell out of me, but I had this silly little picture in my head of floating on clouds and playing harps.  While, that would be fun for a while, especially if I could play the guitar, after a few thousand years I’m sure I’d be snoring.

Now, as an adult, I know there will be limitless topics to dissect and discuss, once we get to heaven.  For instance, I would be completely happy to spend the first ten thousand years learning of science and the universe…the planets…the stars…black holes…life on “other” planets….and on and on…

I’m a huge fan of space!  I’m also a huge fan of science, and so when I get to heaven, after I’ve hugged Jesus and spent a couple thousand years with friends and family, I want to learn everything there is to know about space!  I’ve got my fingers crossed that God will actually allow us to visit all the planets within all the universes.

Throughout the Bible, we read about many heavenly conversations.  I think it would make a fascinating study, However, my present study is taking me on a walk through the book of Psalms.  I’ve walked as far as Psalms chapter 2 and  it’s in this chapter I hear a conversation between God the Father and his Son, Jesus.  Now, of course, historically, this passage is in reference to King David and his rule over the children of Israel;  but prophetically, it is about a heavenly conversation-waiting to occur between God and his Son.  It will play out something like this:

God the Father is in heaven sitting upon his throne, and Jesus, the son, is seated by his side.  

      Looking down from heaven they survey a scene taking place within a valley called            Armageddon.  Psalms 2:1 states that all the evil kings have gathered their armies with the         intent to wage a war against God.  In essence, the scene portrays the last battle between good and evil.   The evil kings are confident they will when this battle because the devil and the beast (Antichrist)(the devil’s “son”) are fighting for them.  The devil’s army is in an uproar, and they rage, perhaps, like a roaring lion, pacing back and forth, taunting God to send them his son, Jesus.

Observing the rant, God, the Father, says to Jesus, 

“Ask of Me, and I will assuredly give [You] the nations as Your inheritance, and the ends of the earth as Your Possession…You shall break them with a rod of iron, You shall shatter them [in pieces] like earthenware (pottery).”  

How does Jesus answer his Father?

Well, we don’t know because, as recorded here in Psalms, the conversation ends, without Jesus giving his answer.  Lucky for us, this same scene can be found the book of Revelations.

In Revelations 16:16 the story continues as, John, the writer, takes up where Psalms left off:

The Father and the Son are right where we left them in Psalms.  God is on his throne and Jesus, seated beside, has just heard his Father’s proposition.  [Psalms 2:8-9]  

John writes from Revelation,

“…the evil spirits gathered the rulers together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon.”

 Then I [John] saw heaven open…  

“There before me was a white horse.  The rider on the horse was called Faithful and True [Jesus]  He was dressed in a robe dipped in blood and was called the Word of God [Jesus].  A sharp sword came out of the rider’s mouth, a sword that he would use to defeat the nations.  And he will rule the nations with a rod of iron.”

And so, according to John, Jesus accepts his Father’s proposition by descending from heaven on a white horse to face and to fight the devil and evil.  John continues the story:

 “Then I [John] saw the beast and the rulers of the earth. Their armies were gathered together to make war against the rider on the horse (Jesus)…  Their armies were killed with the sword that came out of the mouth of the rider on the horse. All the birds ate these bodies until they were full.

In the end, the war is won by Jesus and all the fowls of the air are invited to feast upon the dead bodies.  Quite a bloody picture, John paints!  Will the last battle between good and evil play out as such?  Well, you have to remember that visions and dreams are full of imagery, but God, always…always…has an important truth he wants us learn.

So what can we take from this vision, God has allowed us to witness?  Several things:

  1. There will be a day of reckoning.
  2. Good will win over evil.
  3. Those who have tortured and hurt the innocents will receive their just reward.
  4. Jesus will make all things right.
  5. Finally, peace will reign on earth just as it does in heaven.

I believe the message of King David and John, the Revelator.   I believe God will do what he promises.  However, in-the-mean-time, we live in a world where  evil, often, trumps good.

When I see, hear and even experience the hurts of such injustice I have to cling to the words of the Psalmist to keep my sanity.  For sanity’s sake, I  have to believe the words of John that Jesus will bring peace.

Until that day, we are all called to follow the example of Christ.  We are all called to walk in the very footsteps of Jesus…to do everything we can to make a difference in this world. We are called to remember that we can do all things through Christ.  There are many in this world who have no voice…we are called to speak for them.

Even if it be but one…at least that one will be better from having known us.

My prayer:  Lord, the armies of hate have gathered and they seek to bring hurt to us and to so many others.  Our hearts are broken and sometimes we fall to our knees in the despair. Please fill us with the very spirit of Jesus so we can stand and so we can be Jesus to all that are hurting. Thank you that one day you will bring everlasting peace.  Lord, hasten that day.  Amen.

Daily Sketch/Zombie Abstract

12715362_10209204150525823_7270388323733410981_n_edited_edited_edited_edited

This rendering is my participation in the challenge called  Sketch-A-Day.  Also, it is to promote my new blog challenge:  Weekly Horror Tales   This challenge invites the writer (hopefully you) to weave a spine tingling tale with a prompt that is posted every Sunday.

The rules to this challenge are near to none, as I don’t want to hinder your creative inspirations.  So make it as long or as short as you like and post it by Sunday at midnight.

My first story in this series is called The Book.  It’s a creepy tale about a lonely librarian, who’s looking for love in all the wrong places.  To read it click on the category entitled Weekly Horror Tales, or just scroll down a little.

Please come and join me on this “horrific” challenge.

 

Daily Sketch/ Tales from Watership Down

IMG_0074_edited

(The sketch above is my participation in the  Sketch-A-Day challenge)

My sketching, today, comes from Tales From Watership Down by Richard Adams.  I’ve just started reading this delightful book.  It consists of 19 folk tales about the mishaps and adventures of a herd of rabbits.  The first story, tells the tale of how the rabbit came by their strong sense of smell.

I want to read one book a month and “Tales from Watership Down” is the first.  Below is a photo of the books I’ve committed to read for the next twelve months.  If you’d like to participate in this book club challenge click on  Recycled Book Challenge.  It promises to be quite fun!  Also, for all you horror lovers out there, I’ve started a new challenge called Weekly Horror Tales.  I hope you’ll check it out and join me around a diverse campfire of horror tales.  If you’d like to read my first horror tale in this series please click:  The Book

IMG_4178

 

 

The Book

The following is my participation in Weekly Horror Tales & Dark Side Thursday

0707ephr9_600x5461 Tuesday began as any other boring day in the life of Annie Smith.  The alarm clock rang at exactly 6:45 am which gave Annie at least two wacks at the snooze button before she had to be up promptly at 7 am in order to make it to her job at the Martin County Public Library.  As usual, she stumbled to the shower for a quick body rinse to begin the awaking process which ended after her second cup of coffee.  Coffee, toast and one boiled egg and she was out the door of her small apartment, down the three flights of stairs, to slide into the torn seats of car 52-A of Carolina Cab Company.

Sure enough the drab Library was just where she left it the night before.  Annie inserted her skeleton key and thus began her lonely 8 hour shift.  Annie had always been an introvert, so this job suited her personality; however, as of late, she’d been experiencing a feeling…something akin to loneliness.  As much as she tried to shake the alien feeling, it clung to her and periodically invaded her thoughts throughout her 8 hours as librarian. The feeling, like an intrusive grain of sand in her shoe, pestered her ever so softly, just enough for her to know it there.

Yesterday, while at work, Annie had been so irritated by the feeling that she found herself in the romance section scanning the books on the shelves.    She noticed one particular book was jutted out a fraction more than the others.  Annie reached for that book and whispered the title  aloud in the empty library… “I Have Come for You”  She had opened the book’s worn cover and read the first sentence of chapter one: “Annie, oblivious to the precipice before her, fell head long into a seduction that would forever alter her lonely life.”   Shaken by such a personal application, her hands that held the book quivered until the book fell to the floor.  She stared at the open book, lying on the floor, for what seemed like hours.  Finally, she bent down to retrieve the book and saw that the left page of the book was blank but the right page contained the heading for chapter two which read… “There is no escape…I will have you.”  Annie had laughed nervously, and then shook her head in unbelief, as she put the book back into its place upon the shelf.

Today, as Annie passed from one computer to the next, making sure each green light was lit, the whole scenario from yesterday seemed ridiculous to Annie .  What an absurd idea that the book had been personally speaking to her.  She giggled loudly with the thought.  Startled from the sound that had escaped her lips, she quickly put her hand to cover her mouth.  She looked around to see if anyone had slipped in through the front door.  No, the tiny library was as empty as when she had walked inside a half an hour ago.  For some reason Annie was frightened by the sound of her own laughter.  She couldn’t help but think that the shrill cackle had come from the lips of someone going mad.   No one else was here, so it had to have been her laughter.  Surely, she was not mad.  The thought rested uneasy within her psyche.

“Oh Annie…don’t be so stupid…,” she nervously berated herself and walked rather jerky to toward the comfort of her plush office chair.  The chair was one thing she had insisted upon when she took this job.  It was soft and firm where it needed to be to conform perfectly to her slightly overweight form.   Annie placed the palms of her hands on the desk and began to sit, but before she completed the final descent into the beloved chair she noticed something out of place.  There, lying atop the keyboard of he computer, lay a book.  Her faced blanched white because she knew it was “the book.”

“What the fuck?”  Annie never cursed but the word had come from her mouth as if she had been saying it all her life.  Her exclamation was loud but she didn’t care.  She didn’t care if someone was there to hear her profanity because nothing mattered to her except the book lying on her desk.  Slowly she picked it up and instantly felt compelled to turn it’s pages to chapter three.  She did.  Glaring at her from page 117 were the words… “Don’t look behind you…” Annie’s heart quickened in her chest.  She desperately wanted to turn around, just to prove that they were only words on a page, but she dare not. Her heat began to beat even faster and once again the cackle of laughter filled the library. Annie heard it but was unaware it belonged to her.  Her mind raced with fear and wonder as to what the book would say next.  Slowly she turned the pages of the book until she came to chapter four.

Annie closed her eyes, too afraid to look.  She squeezed her lids so tight it was painful. She wouldn’t look…she couldn’t look…NO, she told herself…but alas she was overcome with curiosity and so she opened her hurting eyes to see a blur scribbled across the page.   Her heart beat wildly as she waited for her eyes to focus.  Finally her vision cleared and she read the sentence, “Annie…can you feel my breath upon your neck?”  The words brought on chills that crawled all over her body.  Tiny beads of sweat covered her already clammy skin.  She could feel a rhythmic draft of air upon her neck.  It touched her and then it was gone…touched her and then it was gone… Each time it came back to her it was warmer.

Something inside, perhaps sanity, told Annie to burn the book.  It pleaded for her to “…take it outside now, strike a match and burn the fucking thing before it was too late!”   But the breath kept touching her. It slid down her neck to caress her breasts.  Her nipples hardened and her heart beat even faster.  Again the voice inside pleaded with her to burn the book, but Annie turned a deaf ear.  The breath was too warm, too erotic.

There were two more chapters left in the book and Annie knew she was destined to turn to each one.  Desiring more of the feelings that hugged her body, she turned to chapter five with fervency, wondering where the breath would take her next.  Under the heading of chapter five she read,  “Annie…feel my hands touching you…”  Annie gasped as the breath upon her body became hands wooing her to ecstasy.  Deep inside her she heard the remnants of a distant voice saying something…something she barely recognized as…matches…or…fire?  Annie didn’t care. She only cared about the hands stroking and begging her to turn to the last chapter.  When the thought of…yes I will…formed in her head, the book fell open to the last chapter of it’s own accord.

Annie’s eyes were closed but this time she didn’t need to read the words on the page.  The words of the book became sound and spoke to her in a man’s voice.

“I’m here for you.”

His voice was smooth as honey.  His hands, still warm upon her body, slowly turned turned her around.

“Open your eyes.”

And so, Annie obeyed.  She opened her eyes to stare into a hooded black hole.  The hole, shrouded by the hood, was so dark that she thought it to be empty, but then it smiled.   The white of its teeth broke the darkness and slowly morphed into a “Cheshire” grin of jagged fangs.  Her desire instantly turned to terror.  The thing gnashed its teeth, taunting her.  Annie screamed into the shrouded hole and her heart burst red with blood.  Her last thought was, …the book…I should’ve burned the book.  

One month later:

“Yeah, they said it was’a heart attack”  Roger scratched his head and added, “…hmmm…but I ain’t so sure.”

Katherine, the new librarian,  looked at the janitor,  “What do you mean, you’re not so sure?”

“Well, I ain’t never seen a face of death quite like that one…sum’ing just wasn’t right.  It was like she’d seen…” he paused a second to shake his head slowly, then spoke in a hushed tone,”…it was…it was like she had seen sum’ing that scared the life right out’a her.”

Katherine smiled kindly at the janitors whispered words, and tried her best to quell his fears, “Don’t you worry, Mr Roger, I’m sure there’s nothing at all to be afraid of in here.” She let her eyes scan the mundane emptiness of the library and added, “nothing at all, except maybe, boredom.”

“Yes, ma’am, you right about that…this place can get kind’a lonesome.”

Katherine watched as Roger shuffled out the front door leaving her alone in the library.  She wasn’t afraid of being alone.  On the contrary, the introvert inside her welcomed the solitude…just more time for reading, she thought.

Katherine stretched within her comfortable chair and stifled a yawn.  Wondering what the thermostat was set on she got up to check but stubbed her toe on something beneath the counter.  She looked down to see what it was but nothing was there.  Figuring her toe had shoved whatever it was further under the counter she got on her hands and knees to  see.  Sure enough lying in the dusty darkness was a book.  Katherine seized the book and rather clumsily stood to get a better look.  Turning the tattered book in her hands she read its title, “I’m Here for You.”

“My goodness!  How long have you been hiding under there?”

Forgetting about the thermostat, Katherine sat back down into the plush chair and blew the dust from the book’s cover.  As she stared at the book she felt something akin to loneliness.  Quietly she whispered, “What the hell,” and opened the book to chapter one.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Walk Through the Book of Psalms

Psalms 2:4-7

He who sits in the heavens shall laugh;
The Lord shall hold them in derision.
Then He shall speak to them in His wrath,
And distress them in His deep displeasure:
“Yet I have set My King
On My holy hill of Zion.”
 “I will declare the decree:
The Lord has said to Me,
‘You are My Son,
Today I have begotten You.

Declare the Promises of God

In Psalms 2:7, the psalmist wrote that he would “declare the decree of the Lord.”  “The written Word of God” is the formal decree of the Lord, our King.  When we declare God’s Word out of our mouths, with hearts full of faith, those faith-filled words go forth to establish God’s order in our lives.  When the royal decree is pronounced, things begin to change!   (Joyce Meyer/The Everyday Life Bible)

IMG_3509Corinne told be about a time when she was a child and in the hospital. Her mother had stayed by her side most of the time; however, the night before Corinne’s surgery her mom went home for some much needed rest.  She assured Corinne she would be back in the morning before her surgery.

Corinne awoke the next morning and nurses began their preparations for the coming surgery.  Corinne looked for her mom but she was not there.  Where was her mom?  She didn’t know.  She only knew she was alone, afraid, and concerned about the coming operation.

They helped her upon the stretcher.  Still she didn’t see her mom. Where was she?   The nurses pushed her toward the elevator doors and Corinne closed her eyes against the tears that threatened to spill over.  In that moment, “someone” inside, whispered to her, “…cast your care on Him, for He cares for you.”  She had never heard these words before but somehow they brought peace to her frightened heart.

Still by the elevator, Corinne opened her eyes and saw her mom’s smiling face.  The doors opened, but before the stretcher moved, her mom was able to give her a hug and kiss.

I honestly believe it was the Holy Spirit, who whispered the words of God, from I Peter 5:7, to Corinne.  Words, from God, increase our faith, gives us strength, and fills us with peace.  Even when our world is turned upside down, we can still have the peace of God in our hearts.  The Bible is filled with promises just waiting to be claimed.

One of my favorite promises, given of Jesus, and found in John 6:37 says,  “All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.”  For years I struggled with low self-esteem.  I was tormented with the idea, I was so repulsive and so stupid, I would somehow manage to screw up God’s perfect love. However John 6:37 tells me that all I have to do is to come to him.  I don’t have to change, I just need to come to him as “me” and then He promises to take me and never, for any reason, cast me away.

God has promises waiting for you.  Go, claim them and see how He will work in your life.

“…casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.”  I Peter 5:7

My Prayer:  Lord, thank you for loving me.  You love the lazy me, the ugly me, the me that always seems to make mistakes.  Just as the father, in the parable of the prodigal son, your arms are always open and ready to welcome me into your embrace.  Thank you for your promises, lead me to them, so I can claim them, and make them my very own.   It’s through the name of Jesus I ask these things…Amen.

 

 

Walk Through the Book of Psalms

91c4c719db16a5dd8e8b61a83808d7ff

Onward Christian Soldiers

Psalms 2:1-3

Why are the nations in an uproar [in turmoil against God],
And why do the people devise a vain and hopeless plot?
The kings of the earth take their stand;
And the rulers take counsel together
Against the Lord and His Anointed, saying,
“Let us break apart their [divine] bands [of restraint]
And cast away their cords [of control] from us.”

Psalms chapter two is often referred to as the “The Reign of the Lord’s Anointed.” It can be read within a historical context or a prophetic context.  Historically, this passage speaks of the conflict between King David and the Philistines.  This story can be found in I Chronicles 14:8-17 and also in II Samuel 5:18-25.

Prophetically, it paints a beautiful picture of the coming Messiah, Jesus Christ.  Paul confirms this, some 800 plus years later, when he writes to the early Christians, “And we declare unto you glad tidings, how that the promise which was made unto the fathers,  God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee.”  (Acts 13:32-33)

Understanding this two-fold meaning of Psalms 2, I wonder if it has any relevance to my life, today.  After all, that’s why I find myself searching the scriptures, because I want the promises of his word to be real in my life.  Yes, God’s word is ancient, but it’s amazing how often the passages I’ve read, many times over, bring something fresh and new to my heart.  His word is alive, and I love God for that!

Verses 1-3 speaks of a gathering of enemies who band together in order to bring harm to God’s anointed. It’s not just any ole enemy, but rather the “big dogs”…”the kings and rulers of the the land.”

The above scene brings to mind, Ephesians 6:12.  In this passage Paul tells us about our enemies (our “big dogs”) and reminds us that “We do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.”

And so, we spiritually stand, just as King David, before the enemies of our lives.  This war we face  is not against the people of this world, but rather against fear, brokenness, loneliness, heartbreak, regret, guilt, shame and any other principality that threatens to steal our peace.  All of these have the potential to bring us helpless to our knees.  What can we do in the face of such great enemies?  I’ve tried to conquer them within my own strength but when I do I always end up defeated and sick with worry.  I’ve come to realize there’s nothing I can do.

We can do nothing, but God can, and He will!  He’s proved this over and over again in my life.  Most of the time, it’s not an easy fix, but he always gives me the grace I need to go through the trial.

He has the armor we need and bids us saying, “…and having done all, to stand.  Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness,  and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace;  above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.  And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God;”  (Ephesians 6:13-17)

My Prayer:  Lord, here I am…again… brokenhearted, filled with fear, guilt and shame.  As hard as I try to shake these feelings, they still haunt me.  Lord, you promised your truth would set me free, so, God, fill me with the truth of your righteousness, the truth of your peace, and the truth of your salvation.  Strengthen my faith through your Word.  Lord, I am weak, but you are strong. I put my trust in you.  Amen.

Onward, Christian soldiers!
Marching as to war,
With the cross of Jesus
Going on before.
Christ, the royal Master,
Leads against the foe;
Forward into battle,
See his banners go!
(Words by S. Baring-Gould )