Jehovah Ropha

Jehovah Rophe/Ropha
…to heal, restore, mend, repair, cure, to make fresh, to make whole…
We could just stop right here and meditate on the truth of this name…He is our healer…He restores our souls…He cures our disease…He makes us whole…
Healing in the Bible can be both spiritual and physical. God heals our whole person.
Consider this from “Jesus Calling”.
I AM a God who heals. I heal broken bodies, broken minds, broken hearts, broken lives and broken relationships. My very Presence has immense healing powers. You cannot live close to Me without experiencing some degree of healing. However, it is true that you have not because you ask not. You receive the healing that flows naturally from My Presence, whether you seek it or not. But there is more – much more – available to those who ask . . .
Jesus Calling
(August 20)
by Sarah Young

The Lord does not leave us in our helpless estate. He heals and makes us whole. Nothing is too much…no wound too great. He wants us to press in as close as we can. The more we abide, the more we are made whole. We are both complete and being completed.

Exodus 15: 19-27
The Lord had just brought them through the Red Sea and caused their enemy to drown in their pursuit. They’re singing and dancing, praising His name. Then, 3 days later, they’re complaining about not having water. They had been in captivity for so long, that they weren’t sure who this God was. They had witnessed plagues and death. I’m sure they were wondering if they were next. Moses cries out to the Lord, the Lord turns the bitter water into useable, sweet water by throwing a tree into the river. (Can you say “foreshadowing??) Then, He makes a declaration of His character. He is telling them that he will protect them and heal them if they follow Him. He could have just taken them straight to the Promised Land, but then they wouldn’t know Him. God wants us to know Him intimately. He brought them through the bitter so they could “taste and see that the Lord is good”.

El Roi

I’ve been doing a Bible Study each week on the Names of God. I’ve not used one site or text, but have really had to search out the scriptures and commentaries. Just recently was reminded of this one from June. Hope it blesses you like it blessed me!

El Roi
(el raw-ee)
Genesis 16 – Sarah and Hagar
-This is the only time in the Bible we see this Name. The Bible explains that God is All-Knowing, but in this case, it’s more personal. He Knows You…

Hagar was pregnant, a slave, a foreigner, and now she was alone. No one is saying she was innocent. She began to treat her employer with contempt because she was able to become pregnant and Sarai had not yet conceived. Understand that, in this culture, a woman’s value was directly tied with her ability to produce offspring for her husband. It wasn’t uncommon for a woman to give her slave to her husband in her place. The child born would be her legal heir. (Sarai, of course, was stepping outside of God’s plan by doing this, but it was culturally acceptable) When Hagar became pregnant, she used it to make Sarai feel inferior. Abram gave Sarai liberty to do what she wished. Her response was to beat Hagar. Rather than live like this, she ran.
It must have been an awful beating, because Hagar chose to leave her only means of survival. In this culture, Hagar would not be accepted back into her family. She was pregnant and cast out. Her options were bleak, and yet she chose to run. She must have feared for her life. Either way, she was bound for an unhappy ending.
I love the picture of where God meets her. The Bible says she was at a stream in the desert. (Very symbolic of Life in the midst of her death!) God tells her to go back to Sarai and submit. He lays out his plan for her child.
She was a slave…a woman…in this culture that made you a little less important than the sheep…yet the Angel of the Lord found her and engaged with her.
Her response was declaring the fact that God saw her. That’s such a powerful statement of His character. Keep in mind she wasn’t in the line of Abraham…she was an outsider, and yet he saw her.
–Now put yourself in Sarai’s place. She was the wife of an important man. Abram was told by God that he was going to have decadents more numerous than the stars. God was setting apart his chosen people from Abram’s line. Yet, they still had no children. I imagine she felt that she wasn’t good enough. There was something wrong with her. She gave Hagar to Abram and she bore a child. Clearly, Abram wasn’t the problem. It was her. Then, Hagar began to pick at that very painful wound. Sarai snapped. She beat Hagar until Hagar chose to be cast out rather than endure life with her any longer. With Hagar went, in her mind, the only chance she had to give Abram a child.
The same God who saw Hagar also saw Sarai. Turn to Genesis 21: 1-2. In the very time God promised Abraham, Sarah gave birth to Isaac. God remembered his promise. He saw her.
Everyone has experienced rejection. Everyone has felt alone. Everyone has grown weary waiting on God’s promises. But God is El Roi. He sees you. Not just a fleeting glance, but he sees you. He knows you. You are precious to Him.

Psalm 121:3, 5-8
Psalm 33:13-22

Carrying a Dead Man

I am reading the book of Colossians with a group of ladies.  Each week we take a chapter of the book and read it all week.   Then we get together and discuss.  Today I was reading chapter 2 where Paul tells us that we have died with Christ.  We’ve been set free from our sinful nature…it is dead.  I was thinking about the truth of this…my sinful nature is dead.  It was nailed to the cross with Jesus and his blood paid the price for it.  He canceled the record of it.  That person no longer exists.  Yet I still sin…everyday…multiple times.  I got this picture of someone walking around carrying a dead body on their back.  The body is stinking…it is beginning to rot and decay…the flesh is coming off of the bone, yet still the person carries it like it is a part of them.  When prompted to remove such a hideous thing from their person, they put it down…disgusted with the reality of what they are doing.  They walk away, but turn around in no time to pick up the dead and carry it once more. 

This is what i do with my sin nature.  The Bible is clear…when Jesus paid my debt, it put to death my sinful nature.  I choose to cling on to a stinking, rotting corpse.  Oh, Lord that I may see this reality when tempted to sin!

Meditate on the Lord

This is something I wrote about back in April of 2012.  The Lord has brought this to my mind several times since.

Tonight as we were discussing the spiritual discipline of meditation in lifegroup, Darrel read Psalm 27:4: One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life,  to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.  

David knew what it meant to meditate on the Lord.  He understood what it meant to be so intimately connected to the Lord that he could gaze upon his beauty.  He longed to dwell in the presence of the Lord.  
On the day that Jesus was crucified, temple veil was torn.  By his death, we now have the amazing privilege to be in God’s presence through Christ.  This was God’s plan from the beginning.  He desires a relationship with us.  He wants us to be intimately connected with him.  I know we’ve all heard it before but when Darrel read that scripture, I was dumbfounded by the thought that the Creator of the Universe wants me to know Him…not only that, he LOVES me.
Who wouldn’t want to sit in his presence? Sadly, I haven’t spent a lot of time recently meditating on Jesus…His goodness…his beauty.
Immediately the Holy Spirit gave me a picture of a beautiful table with rich, white linens.  The table top was covered in flowers, candles, and delicious food.  There were just two table settings of the finest china.  They were intended for me and the Lord.  He had gone to amazing lengths to make it special and intimate. 
There was a movie out in 1991 called Fried Green Tomatoes. In the movie, Kathy Bates plays an overweight house wife who does everything she can to pry her self-centered husband away from the television.  She longs for romance and intimacy.  In one scene, we see that she has gone above and beyond in preparing dinner.  She’s prepared his favorite meal of fried chicken.  She’s set the table with linens and flowers.  She has music playing and candles lit.  Her husband walks in and she lights up with excitement, waiting for him to gush over her preparations.  He walks in, takes the chicken from the plate, comments on how good it smells, and declares he is going to eat in front of the TV so he can watch the game.  Her countenance falls as she goes over and blows out the candles. 
God went to great lengths to have a relationship with us…and sometimes we just walk in and nibble when he wants us to feast.  We treat our time with the Lord as some holy cocktail party where we can snack on hors d’oeuvres and make small talk with the Creator.  But this is not what the scripture meant when it said, “Taste and see that the Lord is good.”  He wants us to dine with him.  He wants us to have time with him where we allow him to pour into us.  He wants us to know him. 
Psalm 23 says that he prepares a table for us…even in the presence of our enemies.  My enemy is my time and how I spend it.  But the fact remains that he has prepared a table for me…He wants me in his presence!  Praise God!!

Ephesians 3:17b-18

Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. Ephesians 3:17b-18

Your roots – A plant’s roots do 2 things. They keep the plant from flying away or falling over because of a force against them. The root keeps the plant planted in the ground. The root also serves as a conduit to the rest of the plant. It takes the nutrients and the water from the soil and carries it to the stem, which draws them up to supply the rest of the plant.

In this passage, Paul prays that our roots would “grow down deep into God’s love and keep us strong.”   God’s love is the soil that anchors our faith. It is what keeps us planted when outside forces come against us. God’s love is what we absorb in our roots and what we need distributed to every part of us. And the great part is God’s love is an everlasting resource.  “how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His love is for us.” The soil of God’s love is not affected by the elements. The sun may be baring down on our plant of faith. The winds of the enemy may be blowing, yet the soil of God’s love remains rich and fettle. It has an endless supply of what we need.  Oh, that I would fully understand this!  There is NO end to God’s love.  There is nothing we can do or say that could make God love us any more or any less.

I am a pleaser…I want everyone to like me.  Sadly, this fact has carried into my relationship with Jesus.  I sometimes find myself trying to “earn” his love.  “Look at this, Jesus!!  Look, Look!!”  It is not bad to want to please the Lord.  But we have to understand that we are not in a competition to make Him love us more.  He loves us…that’s it.  He loves us fully and deeply.  He loves us so much that he gave his life to free us from the bondage of sin.