Aided Hearing

When I remember that God can work good out of what I perceive as bad, I can persevere more easily.

Meditation Thought: “And a voice came out of the cloud, saying, ‘This is my Son, my Chosen One; listen to him!'” (Luke 9:35)

When I ‘listen to Jesus’, how does it affect my life?

  • I am more aware of the joy of being alive, more enthusiastic about living in a fascinating, constantly changing world.
  • My angst is diminished.
  • I can cope more easily with the ‘bad times’ – the disappointments, the sadness of making errors – especially if they adversely affect other people.
  • When I remember that God can work good out of what I perceive as bad, I can persevere more easily.
  • Although disappointment is difficult, knowing that God created us to bond with us as we bond with our loved ones helps to east the angst.

So, my Creator, my Teacher, my Helper, I pray for You to guide me on the path You desire for me to take. Help me to perceive what I am to do to accomplish Your will. I know You desire good for me, as I desire good for my beloved family – and You have the right, and the ability, to guide me as You desire. Thank you, Lord, for your blessings.

Learning by Experience

Only by taking time to reflect upon what has taken place can we assess the results and decide which actions were wise .

Meditation Thought: “And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments.” (1 John 2:3)

There is an order to life that exists commonly to every area. First comes the light of the dawn, then the opportunity to do the day’s work, then comes the evening – the time of reflection upon the results, and preparation of mind for the next day of activity.

Only by taking time to reflect upon what has taken place can we assess the results and decide which actions were wise and which should be altered to produce better results.

As in every area, we learn by experience, so it is in spiritual matters. We begin by becoming familiar with His commandments and seeking to direct our thoughts and actions to be of a similar nature. This is our part – but we do not control all that is involved. We must realize this, and acknowledge that we must be enveloped in the Father’s will so completely that there is no longer a visible “our will” and the “Father’s will”, but there is only one will – homogeneous, composed of two wills, but so thoroughly blended together as to function and appear as one will. It is this exhibition of a “one-will” life that is “keeping His commandments”, and that is our assurance that “we know Him”.

There is a vast difference in the knowledge that a certain person is our father – and the experience of our father’s love being poured out into our life, touching us and changing us, delighting us, fulfilling us, protecting us and teaching us.

The knowledge is moved into experience when we accept what our father longs for us to receive, and offers hopefully: His love, devotion, wisdom, and constant laboring for our well-being.

Only when we realize that these are the basis for His “commandments” do we come into enough understanding to change our attitude into one of joyful obedience. We have come to know that our father’s will is not for his benefit, but for ours. How could we but desire what he desires when we are the recipients of good?

Dual Perception

The person need not copy carry a label “made in the image of God” to identify the quality of workmanship: their thoughts, words, deeds and prayers will all reveal the Source of the quality – the high quality of their life.

Meditation Thought: “But if we walk in the light, as he [the Father] is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” (1 John 1:7)

We “walk in the light” when we commit ourselves to seeking God – to loving Him – to becoming like Him. This is the invisible, spiritual aspect of “walking in the light”. But we are also physical creatures in a physical world. It is in the physical realm that Jesus, through His own physical being and actions that He took while in the body, that we can realize the miracle of cleansing our past, as we desire to do so, having become aware of God and committing ourselves to His way.

It is the dual aspect of our very beings – spiritual and physical – that requires dual perception, dedication and behavior in order to become creatures walking in the light. Our spirits can long to walk in the light, yet the actions of our body keep us from that light. And strange as it may seem, our body taking right actions does not insure our walking in the light: good deeds are helpful, and appreciated by the recipients – but unless the powerful love of the Holy Spirit is involved, they are limited in quantity and quality, and are not the beautiful, whole miracles of the light-enlightened and light-filled child of God.

Only when both one’s spirit and body are dedicated to walking in the light does the evidence shine forth that this person truly is fulfilling the promise declared in the Word. The person need not copy carry a label “made in the image of God” to identify the quality of workmanship: their thoughts, words, deeds and prayers will all reveal the Source of the quality – the high quality of their life.

From Manipulation to Transformation

When this takes place there is the brilliant radiance, comforting warmth, and assurance of power…

Meditation Thought: “So then, no more boasting about human leaders! All things are yours, whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or the present or the future—all are yours, and you are of Christ, and Christ is of God.” (1 Corinthians 3:20-23)

The circle of Christ’s light, and warmth of His love, and power of His being is within reach. But I must move, by my desire to be there, to that place. Perhaps I see another that has moved into this ‘magic’ circle – and I can observe the change. This makes me desire to change also – enough to take courage and move from my familiar habitat to the new area.

At first I see only the ‘greener grass’; I do not realize fully the requirements of living in this place… and by the time I do, I am willing to forgo my own ego-centered desires for the continuing pleasure of the revealing Light, the comforting Love, the moving Power.

And then the miracle: what I have willingly given up is returned to me, but transformed by this Holy Power we call God, Creator of all. I find that though desires are still a part of my life, they are not of their former character – they seem more unselfish, more flexible, more of a spiritual nature than of a material nature. And they do not seem to be at variance with God’s Word, nor His will as I perceive His Word and His will.

And thus my transformed desires are able to be fulfilled. No longer am I trying to manipulate God into fulfilling my self-conceived desires. I am desiring those things that God seeks to fulfill my life. When this takes place there is the brilliant radiance, comforting warmth, assurance of power that Jesus’ life demonstrated.

To what extent it is possible for me to live this life – or perhaps since the total possibility exists from this moment on – I should state more accurately: though I do not know to what degree I will be able to embrace this concept and this life, I am grateful to have come this far in the perception of such a life. I desire to live it. I will try to live it. I pray to God that I will be given the wisdom, knowledge and strength to live it. So help me, God! Please!

May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Thy sight, O my Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer!

Rejoice in Evaluation

He does not intend for us to dwell on how far we have to go to perfectly reflect His character, for that discourages us, but He intends for us to rejoice that we are moving in the direction of maturing into developing a character which reflects our inheritance accurately.

Meditation Thought: “His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.

For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (2 Peter 1:3-8)

To become partakers of the Divine Nature, these qualities are listed in 2 Peter 1:

  • faith
  • goodness (or virtue)
  • knowledge
  • self-control
  • perseverance
  • godliness
  • mutual affection (or brotherly kindness)
  • love

Though, particularly at times, these qualities may be difficult – they are not impossible. Not impossible because God makes them possible through:

  1. Creating us in His image – therefore it is in our nature to be imbued with these qualities
  2. When, in our eagerness to use our freedom, we misjudge our capacities, He rescues us and teaches us a more balanced, true perspective of both our inherent abilities and our constant dependence upon Him as “the Original” – only when we constantly “check in” to compare ourselves with His character can we have any conception of our progress in maturing.

He does not intend for us to dwell on how far we have to go to perfectly reflect His character, for that discourages us, but He intends for us to rejoice that we are moving in the direction of maturing into developing a character which reflects our inheritance accurately, with less adulteration from habits or mannerisms adopted from our flights into expressions of our rebellious freedom, and of adoption of characteristics found in places other than the Divine Creator’s Perfection: His Ideal, His Perfect Will.

Establish Successful Plans

Your plans move from contemplated to completed… You realize that nothing can stop you if you simply will not stop.

Meditation Thought: “Commit your work to the Lord and your plans will be established.” (Proverbs 16:3)

If you commit your work to the Lord – then you are doing His works, and they shall be done according to His plans revealed to you, and thus “your” plans are established – your plans move from contemplated to completed.

The knowledge that you cannot fail – because God is the instigator and mover of your plans – gives you a confidence that assures your overcoming every obstacle. You realize that nothing can stop you if you simply will not stop.

You find many ways of overcoming obstacles because the power and wisdom of the Lord are able to deal with each situation in a way that overcomes the obstacle – you may be led around it, over it, under it, through it – or it may be removed from your path.

The key to success in the establishment of your plans is to believe that the obstacle will be overcome, that it is merely a temporary “roadblock”. Thus you persist in learning the secret of getting it out of your way, rather than stopping, giving up and remaining stuck at that point.

The Ways of Love

We have a choice as to how to conduct ourselves.

Meditation Thought: “Tend the flock of God that is in your charge. Not by constraint but willingly, not for shameful gain but eagerly, not as domineering over your charge but being examples to the flock.” (1 Peter 5:2)

We can think of Paul’s description in this passage as that of a parent, too, like a shepherd. If we find ourselves in a position of authority and responsibility, we have a choice as to how to conduct ourselves. We can choose to be self-seeking and self-indulgent – or we can be generous and self-sacrificing.

The miracle of the mystery revealed by Jesus is that the ultimate results as judged by eternity are not what we expect as we judge by finite time, by short-term cause and effect.

Just as we cannot make a true evaluation of the results of our training of a child by an action, or several actions, performed in the young stages, so we must have patience in waiting to truly evaluate the pros and cons of our choice of behavior as a leader.

There is evidence, however, that is available for us if we desire to learn what is most likely to bring us ultimate peace and joy – lasting peace and joy. Does it not make sense that God who is Creator, and who is Spirit, would guide by truth, and promote good for those whom He has created? He does not force by truth nor force good, however. He offers truth and offers good.

We must be interested enough in learning who we are and why we exist, however, to be able to find the truth and find good. Thus is our integrity respected by God – and his integrity respected by us.

Teach me the ways of love, O Lord,
And pass them on, will I,
To one – or two – or many more,
Whose lives entwine in mine.
With love the bond,
All are safe in Thee.

Forego the Junk Food

Let not your whim of the moment
Rob you of the glory of the future.

Meditation Thought: “So get rid of your feelings of hatred. Don’t just pretend to be good! Be done with dishonesty and jealousy and talking about others behind their backs. Now that you realize how kind the Lord has been to you, put away all evil, deception, envy, and fraud. Long to grow up into the fullness of your salvation; cry for this as a baby cries for its milk.” (1 Peter 2:1-3)

If you are to have the capacity to hold the nutritious spiritual milk, you must not fill up on the “junk food” of dishonesty, jealousy, gossip, deception, envy and fraud. You can discipline yourself to forego the junk food by concentrating on something better. Focus your mind and your energies on something more grand that your selfish indulgences!

The Way is easy – once you commit yourself totally to it – because then you are not ‘double-minded’. Decisions are easier, the Lord’s strength supplants your strength, the Lord’s wisdom envelops your wisdom – The Lord’s love enhances and expands your love.

Do not focus upon results of either your efforts or circumstances. You are to be true to the immediate task of seeking the Father’s will in every decision and action, performing His will as perfectly as you can, and trusting that the results will therefore conform to His will, no matter how they appear to you. This attitude is the procurer of peace and contentment in all circumstances!

Remember that your Creator is not a boss with a bullwhip, but a loving Father holding you in his arms, ready to help you when you have difficulty in fitting the pieces of the puzzle of life together into a meaningful pattern. It is the joy of accomplishment, the confidence of doing the task together, and the love experienced in the proximity to each other that transforms your nature, that renews your mind, that is evidence of the ingestion of spiritual milk instead of junk food.

Let not your whim of the moment
Rob you of the glory of the future.
Keep the joy of the race well-run
At the forefront of your mind,
Envision the reaching of the goal
Feel in your imagination the emotion of pride –
Yes, pride felt by the Father and by you
When you accomplish the completion of the race
Winning the goal of performing His will.

Great Rewards

When you have prayed, when you exercise your faith by believing that all things work together for good, the evidence follows.

Meditation Thought: “ Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name. Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.” (Hebrews 13:15-16)

“I realize that it is not easy for you to praise Me, to do good, to share what you have – that is why these are termed “sacrifices”. Do not chastise yourself that these acts are difficult – but rejoice that they are difficult: when you overcome your reluctance to do them, you are “practicing your scales“, and thus bringing glory to Me, fulfilling Christ’s mission, and becoming a “new creature” by the renewing of your mind.

You are closer than you know to the performance of the concert in several areas in your life. The difficulties which appear now are to develop your abilities and thus perfect you. Do not lose heart, but call upon the knowledge of My promises – and the fulfillment of those promises to others and to yourself in the past! “All things work together for good” – repeat this in your mind, in your decisions, in your acts, in your attitude. When you have prayed, when you exercise your faith by believing that all things work together for good, the evidence follows.

My spiritual laws are clear. If you use them rather than ignoring or abusing them, the rewards will be great for you – and your witness shall be great for Me.”

Scales and Concerts

To find your joy in playing the scales as well as in playing the concert is the key to the kingdom.

Meditation Thought: “Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.” (Hebrews 13:20-21)

“Step back and take a more comprehensive view of your life. You are too involved in the detail of current circumstances. Seek the pattern – the past, the present – and all that you see in the future as Christ-filled. Remember the love of your Creator, the power of your Creator, and the works of your Creator are not apart from you, but part of you. No thought, feeling nor task is unimportant to Me – nor to you, if you have the perspective which is in your best interest (and thus My best interest).

As the seconds make the moments, the moments make the hours – on into a lifetime – so each thought, feeling, act creates the whole of your life. The practice of patience, of gentleness, of humbleness, of sacrifice, of forgiveness, of cheer, may not be pleasant at all times. However, to practice these is it develop a pattern which pleases you, pleases Me, pleases all whose lives you affect. Practicing the scales may not be evidence of the beautiful concert which will develop from them – yet the concert will never be brought forth without the playing of those scales. Like it or not – it is a fact.

To find your joy in playing the scales as well as in playing the concert is the key to the kingdom. This moment is yours – and Mine. The glories of the heaven and the earth are here if only you will observe them. Playing the scales can be a concert for you and for Me if you will realize that it is our practicing anything together that is our fulfillment and our joy. This is the moment you have been waiting for, longing for, anticipating – and are enjoying to the fullest. When every “this” moment is treated in this manner, you have the kingdom within – and though you may hear “scales”, I hear a lovely concert as the joy of your understanding and your obedience is revealed to Me. It is only a brief time, then, until you, too, shall hear even the scales as if they are a concert. Believe – and act on your belief – that My words are your salvation and your fulfillment – your resurrection from a life of plodding scales into a life of inspiring concert. There is abundant evidence to bear Me out. Do not allow your “feelings” to rob you of your concert by distracting you from practicing your scales.”