A DIVA Pilgrimage

Greetings fellow sojourners! I am so excited about memorizing and praying through these upcoming scriptures together! As our spring season approaches, so does 4 of the Lord’s festivals. The remaining festivals occur during the fall season which we will be skipping over at this time.

Passover
Unleavened Bread
First Fruits
Pentecost

Trumpets

Let’s survey a quick sketch of these festivals so we can get our minds focused on spiritual pilgrimage. I have heard the Passover also called the Feast of Salvation, let’s notice why. In the Old Testament (OT), the Israelites applied the blood of the sacrificial animal to the doorpost of their house so that the angel of death would pass over them, thus resulting in salvation. New Testament (NT) believers apply the blood (a spiritual application) of Jesus to their “house” resulting in salvation. The “house” is their body which includes the spirit, soul, and mind and also “houses” the Most Holy Spirit. I like to celebrate Passover as well because through the blood of Jesus, eternal death has indeed passed us over! Hallelujah!!

Leaven or yeast is symbolized in the bible as sin. At the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the OT believers were to eat unleavened bread (bread without leaven or yeast) for 7 days. This signified the removal of sin from their lives. For NT believers, Jesus Christ’s body is the unleavened bread – that which knew no sin. He is the bread of life to us!

In the OT, the Feast of First Fruits acknowledged the fertility of the land God had given the Israelites as a blessing and they were to wave the first sheaf before the Lord expressing gratitude for God’s provision in their lives. NT believers have come to call this feast Easter or resurrection day. How remarkable is it that the OT instructions given in Leviticus 23:12-14 relate to us as direct symbols Jesus used to recall His sacrifice made on our behalf (Jesus as lamb, His bread as body, and His blood as wine)! Jesus is considered the firstfruits – His resurrection guarantees ours (1 Co 15:20,23). This was the last feast Jesus fulfilled.

The Feast of Pentecost. Jews would make their pilgrimage to Jerusalem to celebrate and reaffirm their commitment to the covenant of Moses. Of course this was just a shadow of God’s true plan for deliverance which would be had through Christ, the true lamb of God. It was on this day that the Holy Spirit was given to form God’s church (Acts 2:1-47).

The Festival of Trumpets, even though observed in the Fall season, is just too exciting to not give thought to. I am so excited in typing this I can hardly keep still! In the OT, the high priest actually blew the trumpet to signal the field workers to stop harvesting and come to the Temple for worship. In Leviticus 23:24 the phrase “joyful shouting” means a shout or blast and refers to the sound of the trumpet the high priest blew as a signal to come for worship. 1 Corinthians 15:52 speaks of the trumpet sounding and all being transitioned into a glorified body. Hallelujah!! Christ second coming is heralded by angels blowing trumpets (Rev. 8:7-8,10,12, 9:1, 13-14, 10:7, 11:15) Praise God!!!! We do not know the day or the hour that the Lord will return but be sure of this, lift up your head (Luke 21:28) and be listening for the sound of a mighty trumpet!

During this upcoming spring season let us join spiritually and make a pilgrimage to the Lord as others have for His delightful feasts. Will you join me in memorizing the 15 Song of Ascents that were recited/sung on the way to Jerusalem? We will not only memorize these Psalms but we shall pray them and sing them! After all, these psalms were adapted from ancient hymns.

Let’s pilgrimage DIVAS!  As we spiritually approach, keep your eyes looking upward, and fixed on Jesus. Let’s make our ascent to the Father and while we are at it, there is no need to look down…..or back.

Psalm 120
In my distress I called to the LORD,
and He answered me.
“LORD, deliver me from lying lips
and a deceitful tongue.”
What will He give you,
and what will He do to you,
you deceitful tongue?
A warrior’s sharp arrows
with burning charcoal!
What misery that I have stayed
in Meshech,
that I have lived among the tents
of Kedar!
I have lived too long
with those who hate peace,
I am for peace; but when I speak,
they are for war.

May the grace of God be with you always.  Add your name if you plan to journey.

Amanda

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Praise God For Our Victories!

Greetings fellow sojourners! Many of you have equipped yourselves for more victorious living by memorizing scripture. I have included the scriptures we have memorized so far. No new scriptures will be added this week so I encourage you to check the list and work on the ones you might have skipped. You can do it! Remember, make no agreements with the enemy. If the enemy would put a stumbling block in your path which reinforced old excuses, wouldn’t that encourage you to work that much harder? The Lord calls you to victory! The enemy would have you admit defeat before you even get started! Let it not be so!

Psalm 91
Ecclesiastes 4:12b
Numbers 15:37-40
Joshua 1:8-9
Psalm 24
Thanksgiving Proclamation
Psalm 138
John 1:14
Psalm 112
1 Peter 2:9-10
Hebrews 12:15
Luke 17:11-19

Thank you Lord that you give me Your victory through Your Son. Knowing this, I will be steadfast, immovable, always excelling in the Lord’s work! I know that my labor in the Lord is not in vain! (1 Co 15: 57-58) You alone give me victory (Proverbs 21:31)! I am able to succeed because of you alone. Sing! I will sing praises with the whole of my being. Wake up, harp and lyre! I will wake up the dawn! I will sing praises to You. (Psalm 108:1-3) I am able to do this work and I thank you in advance for the beautiful brain you have created that has enabled me. Glory to you God! May my memory work bring You glory!!

Please indicate where you are in your memory work! Also, if anyone has a prayer request or praise report please share! Let us praise God together for victories! Let us join together in prayer so we can celebrate future victories together!

In His grace,
Amanda

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“Your Faith Has Made You Well”

A couple of weeks ago my daughter Danielle, listened to an impromptu discussion regarding the impact of Luke 17:11-19 which immediately inspired her to dig deeper into the significance of the verses. I loved it! Observing this, I decided to honor her interest in that passage and invite this slice of instruction to penetrate our hearts as well! The verse reads like this, “While traveling to Jerusalem, He passed between Samaria and Galilee. As He entered a village, 10 men with serious skin diseases met Him. They stood at a distance and raised their voices, saying, ‘Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!’ When He saw them, He told them, ‘Go and show yourselves to the priests.’ And while they were going, they were healed. But one of them, seeing that he was healed, returned and, with a loud voice, gave glory to God. He fell facedown at His feet, thanking Him. And he was a Samaritan. Then Jesus said, ‘Were not 10 cleansed? Where are the nine? Didn’t any return to give glory to God except this foreigner?’ And He told him, ‘Get up and go on your way. Your faith has made you well.”

While reading this passage, I first noticed the diseased referred to the Lord as ‘Jesus, Master’. The word Master in this portion denotes “a chief, a commander, overseer master.” It shows a recognition of His authority, rather than that of Teacher. In addressing Him in this way, they identified him as Savior as well as Commander (possessing the power necessary to meet their need).

Jesus commanded the 10 to go and show themselves (Jesus’ will had already accomplished their healing) so that their healing could be pronounced by the priests. The text does not state at what stage of their obedience they actually sensed their healing (whether it was in the ‘going’ or in the ‘showing). The presentation of themselves to the priest was done in line with the regulations of Leviticus 14:2-32. When the infected person was healed, the priest was to pronounce him clean when a gift was offered. What is remarkable here is that the one returning to Jesus, offered Him a gift of praise (with a loud voice so all might know the miracle received and join in giving glory to Jesus), upon which Jesus (acting as priest) pronounced him “well”.

The nine only received the outward cure, but the returning one received the spiritual blessing. The nine received what they sought, forgot about being thankful, and most likely just returned to their restored life. Gratitude proved to be absent in their hearts, as it is in most. Is it the general character of men to be unthankful and unholy? In this passage, Jesus speaks of the ingratitude of man as a whole “as a prophetic type of what will also ever take place.” (for an example see 2 Timothy 3:1-4) We are cleansed of our sins by the blood of Christ and are justified by His righteousness but are we quickened in our spirits to remember His goodness, finding ourselves returning to Him often to give Him glory?

Let’s look at this from another perspective. If the 10 presented themselves to the priest before the one decided to return and give thanks to the Healer, the priest (because of hostility toward Jesus) may have convinced the nine to not return…and they listened. The Samaritan, because of the lack of priestly influence, would have paid no attention to the suggestion. Are our hearts stirred to give praise and worship to our Deliverer but decline because of the influence of others? Let it not be so! Ingratitude is not a characteristic we value in others and I suspect something also grieved by Christ.

Jesus’s will went forth and when the lepers, acting in obedience left, they were healed (meaning to cleanse, purge, purify, make clean, ex: from physical stains or dirt). However, when the one returned, Jesus pronounced that the man’s faith had made him well (meaning healed, made whole, rescue from destruction) which is a more comprehensive type of healing. The openly expressed gratitude of the Samaritan, who alone brought praise to God, also alone received the blessing from the Priest of all priest, the Commander of all commanders, and the Savior of all willing souls.

Shall we, who have been ‘made whole’ also fall down at his feet in gratitude? Let’s memorize this portion of scripture and offer a gift of praise to our Deliverer, Redeemer, and Savior! In doing so, may it also rekindle the hearts of others to also join with their gift of praise! Hallelujah!!

Let’s hear from those who have memorized scripture!

In His grace,
Amanda

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A Heaping Helping of Mercy

“Remember this: The person who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the person who sows generously will also reap generously. Each person should do as he has decided in his heart – not reluctantly or out of necessity, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work.” (2 Co 9:6-8)

The familiarity of this verse to you is probably well established on the notion of the Corinthians’ generous monetary gifting that was to be taken to Jerusalem. Would you be willing to apply these verses with me to something unrelated to financial support? Read over verses 6-7 again with the application of mercy. The person who sows (mercy) sparingly will reap (mercy) sparingly, and the person who sows (mercy) generously will also reap (mercy) generously. Each person should do as she has decided in her heart (the amount of mercy to extend) – not reluctantly or out of necessity, for God loves a cheerful giver (of mercy). Do you love how God is able to make every grace overflow to you? Every grace? Every grace! So that, in every way, always having everything you need (to extend mercy), you may excel in every good work. How does this speak to you? In a loud volume?…

~~~If you would like to read more of this devotional or others like it, they are located in my book A Devotional on Faith, Hope, and Love by Amanda Seipel. This book can be purchased on Amazon. I am blessed to serve you!~~~

In His grace,
Amanda

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