Friday, February 19, 2016

The Standard of Nathaniel ... Passover Meditations for the Monastic-At-Heart


The Standard of Nathaniel ( Nathanael )


   
Meditations  for the Pascha Season
(The Passover Season, 2016)
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Now is My+ soul troubled;
and what shall I+ say ...
FATHER,
save ME+ from this hour ?
but for this cause
came I+ unto this hour.

FATHER,
Glorify Thy Name.

Then came there a Voice from Heaven, saying,

I have both glorified It,
and will glorify It again.

John12:27-28

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Meditation Verse

JESUS saw Nathanael
coming to HIM+,
and saith of him,
Behold an
Israelite indeed,
in whom is no guile!
John 1:47

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MEDITATION

Guile: deceitful cunning, duplicity, stratagem, trick ( bait), decoy, wile.

Not making a pretty picture of one's character, guile is something NOT wanted in a friend.

Nathanael ( or rather, Nathaniel, in the Aramaic of that day ) is a Hebrew name meaning, "gift of EL, gift of GOD."

Indeed, Nathaniel had a gift from GOD:  he had no guile in his character. He did not simulate.

He did not pretend nor feign to be something he was not in order to persuade others to think a certain way about him. Nathaniel was who he was. Period. Nathaniel did not change to ward off someone's bad reaction to him.

 Guile ? He had none of it. So much was he lacking in this character flaw that The LORD JESUS pointed it out when HE+ first  saw Nathaniel coming to HIM+.

Would the LORD JESUS be able to point to us in the same way, as a man without guile? 

Are we a person who does not pretend we are someone we are NOT when we want something... either a good opinion or a favor or to ward off a bad reaction?

Let's make this practical.  Let's apply the Standard of Nathaniel to some of life's situations.

GIFT-GIVING is a good place to examine ourselves for guile.

Do we dislike "anonymous" giving ? After all, the gift would still be going to the same person. The same needs would be met in the recipient.

Do we give gifts for a return?

Maybe we do not want a gift in return, but maybe... we crave attention and that is a good way to obtain it. Do we crave thanks ? Maybe we want a good opinion of ourselves in the eyes of others?

Or... in our OWN eyes ? 

Do we give gifts as an insurance policy... because we do not want any guilt bothering us if we do NOT give that wedding or shower or birthday gift?

Maybe we give to gain interaction with someone, a foot in the door, so to speak ? Do we give in order to buy friendship, in order to have someone like us ?

Now, let's look deeper at our interaction with others.

Do we long for and  crave interaction with others so that we feel good about ourselves ?   Do we like interaction because it fills up that emptiness inside of us... instead of allowing the LORD JESUS to fill us ?

Do we do "ministry" and / or "fellowshipping" because we are so led to pour out Life to others... or because we cannot become still before The LORD ?

Does life become "dull" for us if we have no interaction with anyone except The LORD for a few days?

Do we befriend a person for them... or for us ?

GUILE: pretense, feigning, cleverness used to obtain what we want,  behavior not truthfull ... in short, a lie.


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LET US PRAY:

O LORD CHRIST, I have been weighed in the balance and found wanting. I have used my skills of communication to obtain what I want, guile-fully.

I have not lived like Nathaniel.

Instead, YOU+ would say of me, "Beware!  A person with guile... a person who fakes his way ... he is not who he appears to be ... be on guard when he smiles or speaks ! "

In the Name of The LORD JESUS CHRIST, today and from now on,  I RENOUNCE all guile in my life

I am sorry for giving gifts looking for a return ... in thanks or interaction.  I am sorry for using interaction with others for my own self instead of for their good.

Help me to listen to YOU+, O LORD.

Help me to run to YOU+ instead of to others when I am empty. 

Convict me when I am really wanting to take instead of give... gifts, fellowship, or ministry.

Help me to give gifts at YOUR+ bidding instead of mine. Make me to stop giving out of guilt, but only out of sincerity of heart.

Most of all, help me to be stark honest in all areas before YOU+. Then show me how to live without guile before others so they may see YOU+ and not me.

So, Dear SAVIOR+, I commit to wait until YOU+ lead me before I give a gift.  I commit to wait for YOUR+ leading before barging ahead with interaction or "fellowship" get-togethers.

I commit to wait in my prayer closet until YOU+ bring the interaction with others that YOU+ want me to have.

Thank YOU+,  O LORD, for helping me see this.  Help me to stand firm.

In YOUR+ Holy Name, O LORD JESUS,  I pray.  Amen .


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Worthy is the LAMB+.

Worthy is The LAMB+
that was slain.

Worthy is the LAMB+,
slain
from the foundation
of the earth.
Revelation 13:8
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PRAISE and THANKSGIVING
be to The FATHER,
and to His Beloved SON+
JESUS the CHRIST,
and to
the Blessed HOLY SPIRIT.

ONE GOD:
FATHER,
SON+,
and HOLY SPIRIT,
both now and forever,
world without end.
Amen.
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