Saturday, December 31, 2011

Lift Up Your Hearts!


Lift up your hearts!

We lift them up
unto The LORD.

Let us give thanks
unto The LORD GOD.

It is meet and right
so to do.

It is very meet, right, and
our bounden duty
that we should at all times
and in all places
give thanks
unto THEE,
O LORD,
HOLY FATHER,
ALMIGHTY,
EVER-LASTING GOD.

Who, in the multitude
of Thy mercy 
hast surrounded us
with so great
a crowd of Witnesses...

that we,
rejoicing in their fellowship,
may run with patience
the race
that is set before us...

that together , with them,
we may receive
the Crown of Glory
that fadeth not away.

Therefore, with Angels
and Archangels,
and with all
the Company of Heaven,
we laud and magnify
Thy Glorious Name 
evermore praising THEE
and saying...

HOLY
HOLY
HOLY
LORD GOD of HOSTS*

Heaven and earth are full
of Thy Glory

GLORY BE
TO THEE
O LORD MOST HIGH.
Amen.

* Hosts= Divine, Heavenly armies
Ancient Hymn called the Sursum Corda

Saturday, December 24, 2011

UPON HIS+ SHOULDER............... Tying Together HIS+ Nativity and The TREE+

For unto us a CHILD+ is born,
Unto us a SON+ is given:
and the government
shall be UPON HIS+ SHOULDER...
.
... Isaiah 9:6, A


In ONE VERSE  in the prophet Isaiah, the INCARNATION of the Eternal SON+ of GOD and what HE+ came to accomplish is set forth TOGETHER... tying together the Nativity and the Cross+ of JESUS CHRIST.
.
Tertullian (c. 160-240 A.D.) writes about this Nativity Passage... and ties it to The TREE** , i.e., the Cross of Our LORD JESUS CHRIST... **not the "Christmas" Tree.  

 
Listen to this famous Early Christian's words. Tertullian says: 

Similarly, again, Isaiah says: "For a child is born to us , and to us is given a son." What novelty is that, unless Isaiah is speaking of the "SON" of GOD?...  and one is born to us, the beginning of whose government has been made "on HIS+ shoulder."
  
What king in the world wears the ensign of his power  on his shoulder, and does not bear either diadem on his head , or else sceptre in his hand, or else some mark of distinctive vesture? 

But the novel "King of ages," CHRIST JESUS, alone reared "on HIS+ shoulder"  HIS+ own novel glory, and power, and sublimity, ... the cross, to wit: that, according to the former prophecy, the LORD thenceforth "might reign from the TREE. (Psalm 96:10)*"

from The Writings of Tertullian, ANF Vol. 3, I. Apologetic: ,  Section 7, "An Answer to the Jews", Chapter 10, p. 166, second printing edition, 1995.

 * This phrase from the tree... was removed from the text, although the Early Church writers quoted it, being familiar with it. See footnote, that same page in Vol. 3, ANF.



GLORY  TO GOD
      IN THE HIGHEST!
.
Only Our LORD JESUS CHRIST could
.
Reign from the TREE+
.
of HIS+ Cross !
.
And it was prophesied
right along with HIS+ Birth !
Glory to GOD ! 
.
Glory to GOD
and PEACE
GOODWILL
toward men !
.
+  +  +

Thursday, December 22, 2011

SKELLIG MICHAEL...

The  BEEHIVE....  
Photo from skelligstrips.com (I think)

Within your Heart...

Monday, December 19, 2011

SKELLIG MICHAEL... A Retreat into Prayer

Photo from  prayerfoundation.org
             Skellig Michael- Monastery in the sky-  Ireland


Photo from  in-between.org.UK
or
basementgeography.blogspot.com
Ancient Celtic Monks Living Quarters on Skellig Michael


                 A  Quiet Monk
   

The ULTIMATE PRAYER RETREAT...
A life given over to HIM+,
undistractable and focused,
agreed with CHRIST+ Our LORD.

Skellig Michael, an ancient monastery jutting out of the cold Atlantic, about 9 miles from Ireland, was used by a small group of monks for about 600 years. They were stone serious about their retreat into prayer. 
~  ~  ~ 

We hear much about prayer retreats these days. How long do your church brothers and sisters spend at theirs? How much time is spent in prayer during the rest of their lives?

How about learning to feel GOD'S presence? How about learning to BREATH with HIM+ Who+ needs no air, but is the Breath of Life for all who choose to come to HIM+ in repentance and in truth?

HE+ says, "Draw near to ME+ and I will draw near to you."

HE+ says, "If you seek ME+ with all of your heart, you  will  find ME+."

In our very busy, self-oriented world and society, some will feel that they do GOD a favor by taking a few days, or maybe a week, to participate in a prayer retreat of one sort or another. Others will go on a prayer retreat out of a desperate desire to find GOD, to come close to HIM+.  That's commendable.

However, the direct mandate from our LORD CHRIST is to "deny ourselves, take up the Cross and follow ME" ... DAILY.

HE+ says, " Whoever of you that does not forsake all that he has, cannot be My+ disciple." 

We feel that these are hard words and probably not for us.
If they are not for us,
then
who are they for?

I think that we all are part of "whosoever".  The problem is that HIS+ words interfer with our materialistic western lifestyle. So, we feel that JESUS must have meant someone else other than us, or maybe HE+ was just mistaken, not understanding that we are under Grace!!  However, HE+ is the ONE+ Who+ placed us under that Grace with HIS+ own Body and Blood! HE+ is not likely mistaken.
      
Let us all take heed to our own lukewarmness, which in another place, JESUS said, HE+ will vomit out of HIS+ Body. JESUS can not be tricked.
      

There are those now and those in the past who have accepted HIM+ in every area of their lives and have sought to live the ultimate prayer retreat daily, for whatever amount of time they have been alloted in this very short life. The Cross of Christ is more valuable to them, you see, than any material gain or advantage or possession... than any career... than any retirement security. Yes! JESUS is right after all!! 
        

What is your life?

It is but a mist that appears for a little while, and then disappears. The only thing you really have is what you give back to HIM+. HE+ will keep it for you unto all eternity. HE+ will give it back to you multiplied a hundred times over!!

         " ..... is not My WORD like a FIRE, says the LORD? And like a HAMMER that breaks the rock in pieces?"   
AMEN

Brother Brendon Patrick, OGS +

In the Name of the FATHER Who created you,
the SON+ Who saves you,
and the Holy SPIRIT Who sanctifies you.

+ + +
        
   

Friday, December 16, 2011

My Hand, Cemented...



My hand, cemented...
fingers fixed
upon those goals
of my desire.
.
Grasping hand
unyieldingly
ignored YOUR+ call
… and coming Fire.
.
Determinedly
YOU+ pried them loose
until my willful
strength was through.
.
Emptiness
of hand and heart…
my sole* remains
… except for YOU+.
.
Sick I grew,
distressed anew
… no purpose, goal, nor person.
Weak body could not
stand the stress
of no human purpose
to profess.
.
Bleakly, no-one needing me,
skills vanished like hot air.

. Strength fled, fever raged;
mind, a blank; I did not care.
No work upon my shoulder
… except my solitary prayer.
.
No goal in life
… except to do
my daily discipline
with YOU+.
.
Directionless, interest gone
unadorned, life raw and bare.
.
Bones ached, emotions numbed.
Joy? Not my portion, this I rue.
Only in one place Joy glowed
… in quietness with YOU+.
.
Thank YOU+, LORD,
for freeing me
From built-in values, clamorings...
For prying loose my concrete grip,
Death-bringing goals
that would strip
my time and thought from YOU+.
.
My aims and goals
YOU+ withheld
…"AKA" my future woes...
.
Earth-bound illusions
replaced by YOU+...
  Heaven’s treasure flows
through entwining Fingers,
all Divine+
into this hand of clay,
called “mine.”

*sole = only
"AKA"= Also Known As
or Otherwise known as...
.
.
.  .  .  .  .
.
.
.
By Sister Judith Hannah  + + +
~ from my heart to yours...

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Straw for the Manger #4....



.... Whereby the DAYSPRING+ from on High
 hath visited us,
To give light to them that sit in darkness
and in the shadow of death,
to guide our feet into the way of peace.

For with THEE+ is the
Fountain of LIFE:
in Thy+ LIGHT
shall we see Light.

+  +

Dear Heavenly FATHER...
Remember the Traveler! 
Bring us safely home,
safely home...
HOME+ to JESUS.

O LORD, as we sojourn here through the valleys of human troubles, help us to lift our face to Thy Light.

Help us to walk in Thy Light, as HE+ is in the Light,
then... then.... then

we will have fellowship one with another, and The Blood of JESUS CHRIST His SON+ cleanseth us from all sin.
~  ~  ~
I ask THEE+ to keep me from hiding my sin from THEE+ ,  as did Cain, as did David. Help me to live in the Light of Thy+ Love, in the Light that repentance and Thy cleansing Blood bring into my heart. Help me, O LORD.

Heavenly FATHER,
Remember the Traveler!
Bring us safely Home,
safely HOME+ .
...I'm ready to go....
 ~~~ Fernando Ortega,
Christian worship leader
and Excellent Musician.
.
.

I+ AM the Light+ of the world:
he that followeth ME+
shall not walk in darkness,
but shall have
the Light+ of Life+
  +  +  +


Sunday, December 4, 2011

Come, Stand by ME+...


Stand by ME+
...when dignity is stripped;
they took My+ clothing, as well.
Come, stand by ME+.

Stand by ME+
...when rejection faces you;
family, friends, and followers
forsook ME+
when I+ needed them most, too.
Come, stand by ME+.

Stand by ME+
...when your good acts
are misunderstood;
they said My+ acts of mercy
were acts of be'elzebub.
Come, stand by ME+.

Stand by ME+
...when lying spirits defame you;
they dogged My+ path incessantly
... and still do...
Come, stand by ME+


Stand by ME+
...when excluded, though you love;
they hid their faces from ME+, too,
as I+ died to cover their sins.
Come, stand by ME+.

Stand by ME+
...when death strikes;
Death struck My+ Body
but soon found out it struck
its own death-blow, not Mine+ !
Come, stand by ME+.

Stand by ME+
...through every earthly trial;
I+ will not hide Myself+ from thee.
Come, stand by ME+.

Stand by ME+
It's then you'll find
the only way to minister
to My+ hurt
is
when you come
...and stand...
by ME+.

+  +  +
by Sister Judith Hannah,
who is learning to come
and stand
by HIM+.

Friday, December 2, 2011

#3 STRAW for The MANGER... Advent Meditation


For the Joy that was set before HIM+
HE+ endured....


Add straw to the Manger for victory in endurance...


HE+ was laid in a rough wooden feeding trough, a manger,  just after entering this life as a man... and HE+ was laid upon rough-hewn timbers, a cross of wood,  as HE+ prepared to depart this life, as The SON+ of GOD.

Neither items of wood were sanded and polished smoothly. The cross was likely as rough-hewn wood always is... jagged, splintery, knotty. The Romans would not have concerned themselves to sand or plane the crucifixion timbers. Even in HIS+ death throes, there was pain and agony un-imaginable.

But, .... for the JOY that was set before HIM+ , HE+ endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the Right Hand of the Throne of GOD.

For consider HIM+ that endured such contradiction of sinners against HIMSELF+ , lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.

Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin. (Hebrews 12)

O LORD,
Help me to endure when someone crosses me , my words, or opposes my plans. Help me to focus on the FRUIT that I want to cultivate in that other person. Help me do those things that will make him hungry for THEE+,  those things that will draw him unto THEE+,  those things that will make him love THEE+ more than love me.

Then, O LORD, Thy+ Joy  will most assuredly rest upon me and I shall be full.

This I ask in the Life-Giving Name of  The SAVIOR Who+ always saw BEYOND the Cross, keeping that joy before HIM+.
+  +

In The Name of The HOLY FATHER,
Who created thee;
His+ Life-Giving SON+,
Our LORD JESUS CHRIST,
Who+ joys in thee;
And Their Blessed HOLY SPIRIT,
Who comes alongside to greatly strengthen us.