BAKER’S DOZEN 4-6-21

1. Feasting on Ps. 32:1-2 “blessed is the man whose sin the Lord does not count against him” No, not against me because they were already counted against Jesus. Amazing. Can you imagine people who insist on carrying their own even when Jesus has already done it? Our transgressions forgiven; our sins covered! WOW! …

2. The Senate voted 51 to 40 on March 15 to confirm Congresswoman Deb Haaland  to be Interior secretary, making her the first Native American to hold a Cabinet secretary post. I hope these “firsts” are also qualified.

3. I’m trying out the new way to post image on this block editor. I can size to 350 but it does not automatically change the second number like the old method did. And it leaves this huge image on image added. It does seem like it would be nice for use within he content. Can someone straighten me out? About this issue of course, Probably no one wants to take on straightening me out except in small hunks at a time! 

4. I am so upset at how the devil (evil) steals the most precious symbols from Christianity. I’m disgusted with how the “rainbow” was stolen by homosexuals. To add fire to my ire, I saw some ad on one of the girls’ you tube that had rainbow colored paint to paint the tongue. Am I jumping to unwarranted conclusions?

5. Any politician who adds anything to a bill that includes funding other than what is stated to the public is no better than someone who loots during a disaster. Yes, I am talking about the “covid” stimulus bill for one. Covid bill with 9% for covid relief, 93% what? And how about this “infrastructure bill coming up? Since when has housing been “infrastructure”?

6. I watched the movie “Healing River” produced by our own blogging friend, Mitch Teemley. It was great. https://mitchteemley.com/2020/05/15/healing-river-is-here/

7. I’ve finally “mastered” publishing posts via “schedule” like some of you do. There I thought you all have been getting up by six in order to get your posts out on time. No more. I sleep right through to 8:30 then get up to see if Word Press keeps their promise.

8. I can’t hear my preacher when I am in the congregation. I love to listen from Face Book at home, but I love people also. And I am a church goer. So I have found a solution. I took my phone and earbuds to church. Before the preacher began I left the auditorium and went the Fellowship Hall and listened to him through Facebook. Smooth as a whistle. And our person who keeps “guard” on doors throughout the service was very helpful and encouraging to me. Where there’s a will there’s a way, they say. When I get it down pat, I might be able to do the same thing in the auditorium.

9. Do you remember that I promised myself new nails, a haircut, and teeth repair. I have now done them all. I’m happy with the way he “stable-ized” my lower biting teeth. Good job done.

10. My cardiologist told me to go on my way as I had been but to keep track of my blood pressure. I just now checked; it is 107/65. Can you beat that? Chatting with you is very relaxing to me. Last time I checked it was 121/67.

11. Can someone tell me a reason I should be thankful for the job President Biden is doing? I haven’t found one yet.

12. “I don’t like it but I’m mesmerized by it. I am referring to what I consider “art.” Sometimes I’m even repulsed by it. Whatever the emotion, art affects me in some way.” I make an exception, however, to that which disgusts me. That’s no more art than telling “jokes” that shock is humor; mostly they are an excuse for dirty talk about with body functions or sex. No humor.

13, Go back and read #6 again. Then go watch the movie. You’ll enjoy it, as well as benefit from it.

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SEE SPOT SCRATCH

Spot had seventeen fleas

Living on his nose and knees

Made Spot snort and sneeze.

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The light touch today with Ronovan.

Ronovan’s haiku challenge using words “fleas” and “sneeze” https://ronovanwrites.com/2021/04/05/ronovan-writes-weekly-haiku-poetry-prompt-challenge-352-fleas-and-sneeze/

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MARY’S SOLILOQUY (#4 OF 4)

I have news. Do I whisper it in adoration? Or do I shout it in exultation? Here it is: Jesus lives! JESUS LIVES! He’s been set free. Jesus— free from the grip of the grave. Free even from the grasp of my arms! He was mine for a season, but he was on earth for a reason. The reason? The cross and the grave! Death and Resurrection.

As my son, he died, he succumbed to death; as God’s son, he rose to life.
As my son he came as a baby; as God’s son, he will return as King.
As my son he rode a common donkey; as God’s son, he will ride a white stallion.
As my son, he fed five thousand; as God’s son he is bread for all.
As my son, he drank water from a well; as God’s son, he is Living Water.
As my son, he was under the law; as God’s son, he was fulfillment of the law.
As my son, he celebrated the Passover; as God’s son, he became the Passover.

Jesus, my son, is no longer bound by a body, He has been set free, and as he is so can I be! Jesus, my Lord, and my God. I am highly favored and honored to be your servant. May it be to me as thou wilt.

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Oneta’s note:  And I rejoice that “as he is, so we shall be” – Alive, alive, alive forevermore.

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pexels: Luis Dalvan

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MARY’S SOLILOQUY (#3 of 4)

A piercing of the heart—indeed, tonight my heart is not only pierced; it is ripped apart! I was at the foot of the cross! I watched him die! Die! This son of God, the miracle worker! Skeptics mocked him by telling him to come down from the cross. Why did he not?

He proved his power over death by his love for another grieving widow whose son died. Why did he leave me grieving? He did think of me. Asked John to take his place as my son. Even near the end, he encouraged a thief hanging next to him. At last he said “It is finished.”

Finished! The Messiah, dead. The Savior, dead. The healer, dead. The miracle worker, dead. The king, dead. My son, dead.

However, death seemed welcome compared to the betraying, whipping, scorning, ridiculing, humiliating, bleeding, suffering! They contemptuously jabbed a mocking crown of thorns on the brow that I had stroked in love. The brow that wrinkled when he laughed. The brow that sweat at the end of a long hard day. The brow that oozed blood into his eyes as it made its way down his cheeks.

Why did the glorious shouts of hallelujah, change to threatening screams of crucify him? Why, God, why? Why did you leave him to suffer alone? Why would your promise turn to this? What an ignominious end to your glorious promise!

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image: pexels, Luis Dalvan

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MARY’S SOLILOQUY (#2 of 4)

I waited for tomorrow-a tomorrow that lasted 18 years!

Jesus was a favored lad, a brilliant and talented man. Still he would do nothing about his special-Godness. He just responded to my urging by saying, “It’s not my time.” Finally when I spurred him on that day at Cana, he followed through! Turned water into wine! It was nothing short of a miracle!

Oh, how I rejoiced, what pride I felt. I remembered how the angel said I was highly favored, giving birth to God’s son.—- But I also remembered Simeon’s words. He said “a sword will pierce your own soul.” Some days I glory in Jesus’ successes, his little group of followers has grown to be masses. Some days I cry in fear for his lack of fear. My heart reaches heights of pride when I hear how people love him, then it drops like stone when I hear how much his enemies hate him.

I heard that he overthrew the tables in the temple and drove out the merchants! He even takes authority over devils—and death. If he has any fear, it is wiped out by his compassion. He is always doing good, loving the children, eating with sinners, healing the sick, feeding the hungry, even touching the lepers and making them clean!

But I am lonely for him. He seldom comes home. I went to see him and he seemed to say that he has no more time for me than for other mothers! My son, the miracle worker! ’Tis no wonder they want to make him king. Who better to be a king? God’s son, and my son! Surely he will be safe, he is the promised Messiah.

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image: pexels, Luis Dalvan

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MARY’S SOLILOQUY (#1 of 4)

I am beginning some “Mary’s soliloquies” in which I try to present Mary’s mother-heart for her son, the son who was also God’s son. I hope I give her proper honor and respect as well as showing her human role in loving this precious man, the precious promised Savior – her very own son!

My heart sang with rapture when they found him. That son of mine! He was in the temple, talking to the teachers!

I recall how it was at the beginning – when the angel came to me. What bliss! What ecstasy! What elation! I, Mary, the mother of God’s Son! The long awaited Messiah.

That was twelve years ago, and through the years the memory has faded only slightly. For twelve years I’ve waited for proof that Jesus was God’s Son! Now everybody in our caravan will know how special he is! I know some of the family has never believed me – especially not Joseph’s two cousins. Now they’ll know!

Jesus has been a very good boy – kind and gentle. But he does sometimes have trouble with his brothers and sisters. He learns well, but not miraculously – he studies a lot. He is special but nothing about him indicates he is the Son of God. I’ve hinted that he could prove his special heritage by performing a miracle; he just responds with a sad, rebuking look.

Now he has done it! Jesus, my son, astounded the rulers in the temple! Now, all the family will know Jesus is more than a regular child – more than just a son of man. He is the Son of God, the son of Mary! Now his time has come! Just wait until tomorrow…just wait!

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image: pexels, Luis Dalvan

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LIVING LESSONS FROM LEVITICUS, #3

Chap 18  A lot here about sexual sins.  We cannot live like the world lives with all its sinful sexual practices; we must obey God.  Sanctioned sex is honorable between married partners—a man and a woman who are faithful to each other. America’s craziness in accepting almost all “sex between consenting adults” has led to a lot of unfulfillment, disease, and broken hearts among “those consenting adults.”

Chap 19  I think you will like to read this chapter.  It is the basis for a lot of present day laws.  I find them interesting, satisfying to see how many of our laws are based right there in Leviticus. It also includes another account of the Ten Commandments.

Chap 20:4,5  I think it is a stern warning regarding abortion.  In the practices of that day it is regarding child sacrifice made to the idol, Molech.  God said those who watched and did nothing will be punished!  This is somewhat like Chap 5:1 if we witness wrong doing we are also responsible if we let it go unchallenged.  This principle is very much needed in our country at this time.  Especially as it relates to abortion, homosexuals, drugs, greed, dishonest judges, and many other things.  We need to speak up, try to do right, pray, and vote for honest leaders.  One of the senators recently said, God was not a concern for congress!  With that attitude no wonder we suffer God’s judgment.

Chap 23:22  Be generous.  Don’t use all your assets for yourself.  Give to the unfortunate.

Chap 26:1-13  Promised blessings for the obedient; 14-39 punishment for disobedience.

Verse 40 is Good News as it presents forgiveness for those who confess and repent. It is required that they repent for father’s sins also. This is a question/situation I am unsure about. But I think there might be some truth to that need. We cannot change the past for their actions on earth or for their souls, but we could be more broken-hearted for what they allowed to happen.

You see Leviticus has some very important stuff mixed in with some hard reading stuff.  If you learn the things I’ve pointed out to you, you will be far ahead of most folks.  Don’t get bogged down in the sacrifices, feasts, priests garments, etc.   Just take what is helpful to you.  It reminds me of Mark Twain who said, “It ain’t the parts of the Bible that I don’t understand that bothers me; it’s the parts that I do understand.”  So, don’t worry about the part I’m not telling you, just get the part I’m giving you!  Then sometime read all of Leviticus for curiosity.  Maybe you will find important lessons to point out to me.

For some discussion of how Leviticus points to Jesus Christ go to https://salvageable04.wordpress.com/2021/03/11/leviticus/

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LIVING LESSONS FROM LEVITICUS, #2

Yesterday’s lesson on Leviticus is important as a basis for todays continuing “living lessons from Leviticus.

Chap. 6:1-5 is interesting.  If you steal something and then decide to return it, you must add 20% of the value.  Another scripture says that about paying your tithes.  If you do not pay tithes in a timely manner, you must add 20% when you get around to catching up! I would like to see our justice system arrange a way for thieves to make restitution. If a thief steals a hundred dollars from me, I’d rather have my hundred and twenty back than have her/him spend a month in jail. Now I know there are hardened criminals that have to be removed from others. But that’s a different issue. This passage of scripture is referring to neighbors who have entrusted one another with some item of value. I think it supports the idea of restitution in other thefts.

Chap. 9:7 and 22  Nice picture of what the priests (leaders) should do for the people.  We are blessed when we have good pastors who care for, pray for, and give blessings to their congregation.

Chap. 9:23-24  show how God’s glory came down in the tabernacle and how the people responded.  One of the things that breaks my heart is that so many people under about sixty have not witnessed the manifestations of the Holy Spirit in churches of today.  Many denominations have not allowed “freedom” of worship in their congregations for many years if ever.  Truthfully there are many churches where God may not even stroll through for a visit.  🙂 

But the good thing is that one does not have to be in a church building to have an awesome awareness of the presence of the Lord.  Try just wholeheartedly giving him your focused worship and see if He responds in some way. 

Chap 11:44-45 tells me to be holy as God is holy.  Whoa there! Impossible?  Yes, that is why we must have Him to be holy in us.  One visual image scripture uses is “to cloth” ourselves in righteousness. Chap 20:7,8 says to “sanctify” yourself, it also says that He (God) sanctifies us.  Most translations use the word “consecrate” instead of “sanctify.”  We cannot change ourselves just by making a decision to avoid sin; we have to have the help of the Holy Spirit.

The experience of sanctification is explained differently among church denominations, but I believe all churches teach some form of sanctification. I have an essay I hope to use before long which dwells more on this subject. Like all my lessons, it is pretty simple not very deep in theological language and concepts.

Tomorrow we will take a look at these chapters: 18, 19, 20, 23, and 26 Hope you will be back.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BRYDON

I sat observing a great-nephew at Christmas time. Brydon had received a Lego kit. He went directly to a card table, pulled out the book, looked at the first few pages, then back to the first to see what pieces were required to follow directions on those first two pages.

The picture below show his next moves.

This is what appears to me. 1. He tries a piece. It didn’t work. 2. He checks the book again. 3. He carefully ties again. That time it worked. Brydon was unaware that I was taking pictures.

Oh, how much easier putting Walmart furniture together if we would check the manual. Then try. If it doesn’t work, check the manual again.

Hey, there must be a lesson for life here also. Check the manual. Only choose the pieces that are laid out for you. Head down that road. If it is wrong, back up, look at the manual again, and go for another try.

I would be remiss if I did not give credit to a great mom and dad who obviously have taught Brydon to use this method. It does take time, effort, and consistency.

I’ll just say, in my exposure to close to a thousand children, I have met very few who do not pour out all the pieces and try and fail, try and fail, until many quit trying. That’s sad.

HEY, BRYDON, YOUR AUNT ‘NETA IS PROUD OF YOU!

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LIVING LESSONS FROM LEVITICUS, #1

Leviticus is the third Book in the Old Testament.  The name stems from the Levites who were the priests from the tribe of Levi.  Few Christians like to read Leviticus.  It is not really a good read for me either; so much is about how the priests were to make animal sacrifices and that no longer is applicable for us Christians because Jesus came to be the final and eternal sacrifice.  No longer were yearly sacrifices needed.  But we still have to repent and ask Jesus for forgiveness of sins we commit, sometimes very often!

But the book is in the Bible, so I ask “What is here that God wants me to know?”  The big theme is that God is holy and He wants us to live holy.  I have found some things that are very important to our Christian lives.  So here are my conclusions about some important “living lessons from Leviticus.”

Chap. 3:17  You must not eat fat or blood.  We are probably not supposed to eat fat because it is not healthy for us.  Chap. 17, verses 11 and 14 tell why are not supposed to eat blood.  Because “life is in the blood.”  God demands a blood sacrifice because He demands our life.  Jesus gave His blood for us, so we give our lives for him.  Not many have to die for him in our country, but everybody who accepts his sacrifice, has to live for Him.  We have to be followers of Jesus.  Sometimes that is a struggle but our desire must be to please him. 

Chap. 4 points out the difference in punishment for those who unintentionally sin and those who intentionally sin.  Sometimes you might do something then decide it was wrong.  That is a lot different than planning or choosing to do something when you know it is wrong.  So I do not think heathen people who do not have the gospel have to suffer the same penalty for sin as those of us who have the gospel.  However, they still cannot be saved without Jesus. 

Chap. 5:1  This is an important verse.  Think about it.  For instance, if your teacher or manager is getting after someone you don’t like  and you know he is not guilty, you must speak up for him the same as if he were your friend.  If we know the truth but don’t tell it, it may be the same as a lie.  For big folks, if they know fraud was committed in an election, and do not say so, they are as guilty as the ones who committed the fraud!  There might be people who have jobs where they have to make huge decisions affecting their lives if they find corruption going on in their work environment. 

Part Two will be coming. It includes some highlights from Chapters 6, 9, and 11.

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