January 2, 2011

"2011 I will restore"

“2010 was a disappointment to many. You expected, you anticipated, I had promised you. Victory was in the wings, but for reasons you will learn later some victories were snatched from you. Yet you witnessed I was with you, even in the smallest and humblest of moments.

“So here is what is in store. What was stolen in 2010 will be shaken from the clutches of your enemy in 2011. You will rejoice like David rejoiced when he got the wives and children back. But in your celebration don't forget what you learned in the tests of fire. Have you noticed maturity is your companion, no longer a symptom of aging? Maturity is a virtue. Humility is a virtue. A contrite and quiet heart will hear me. I don't delight in brokenness. But I do draw close to the quiet and gentle soul. The one taught to weather the storms with maturity that shows My light, with radiance despite darkness around.

“So 2011 I will restore. And you will cherish the lessons learned from 2010. You will always remember affliction breeds maturity. My children are set apart and shall always be in the world but not of the world. The great trouble unearths the greatest treasures within you. Job said his eye sees me. Now your heart sees me. And you will not lose sight of the kingdom. For the kingdom is within you.”

I looked up the verses that the Lord made reference to above. Here they are, Happy New Year. I can feel the fight and indeed the maturity from the trials in my spirit, like David, ready to take back in 2011 with the Lord's strength what had been taken.

When David and his men came to Ziklag, they found it destroyed by fire and their wives and sons and daughters taken captive. So David and his men wept aloud until they had no strength left to weep. David's two wives had been captured--Ahinoam of Jezreel and Abigail, the widow of Nabal of Carmel. David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him; each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters. But David found strength in the Lord his God.
Then David said to Abiathar the priest, the son of Ahimelech, "Bring me the ephod." Abiathar brought it to him, and David inquired of the Lord, "Shall I pursue this raiding party? Will I overtake them?"
"Pursue them," he answered. "You will certainly overtake them and succeed in the rescue."
David and the six hundred men with him came to the Besor Ravine, where some stayed behind, for two hundred men were too exhausted to cross the ravine. But David and four hundred men continued the pursuit.
They found an Egyptian in a field and brought him to David. They gave him water to drink and food to eat-- part of a cake of pressed figs and two cakes of raisins. He ate and was revived, for he had not eaten any food or drunk any water for three days and three nights.
David asked him, "To whom do you belong, and where do you come from?"
He said, "I am an Egyptian, the slave of an Amalekite. My master abandoned me when I became ill three days ago. We raided the Negev of the Kerethites and the territory belonging to Judah and the Negev of Caleb. And we burned Ziklag."
David asked him, "Can you lead me down to this raiding party?"
He answered, "Swear to me before God that you will not kill me or hand me over to my master, and I will take you down to them."
He led David down, and there they were, scattered over the countryside, eating, drinking and reveling because of the great amount of plunder they had taken from the land of the Philistines and from Judah. David fought them from dusk until the evening of the next day, and none of them got away, except four hundred young men who rode off on camels and fled. David recovered everything the Amalekites had taken, including his two wives. Nothing was missing: young or old, boy or girl, plunder or anything else they had taken. David brought everything back. He took all the flocks and herds, and his men drove them ahead of the other livestock, saying, "This is David's plunder."
1 Sam 30:3-20 (NIV)

This is what the Lord says:
"Heaven is my throne,
and the earth is my footstool.
Where is the house you will build for me?
Where will my resting place be?
Has not my hand made all these things,
and so they came into being?"
declares the Lord.
"This is the one I esteem:
he who is humble and contrite in spirit,
and trembles at my word."
Isaiah 66:1-2 (NIV)

For thus says the High and Lofty One
Who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy:
"I dwell in the high and holy place,
With him who has a contrite and humble spirit,
To revive the spirit of the humble,
And to revive the heart of the contrite ones."
Isaiah 57:15 (NKJV)

...the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.
1 Peter 3:4 (NKJV)

[Job said to the Lord:] "I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, But now my eye sees You."
Job 42:5 (NKJV)

Jesus replied, "The kingdom of God does not come with your careful observation, nor will people say, 'Here it is,' or 'There it is,' because the kingdom of God is within you."
Luke 17:20-21 (NIV)