Tag Archives: poetry

Feast in the Midst of Famine

As the famine ravaged the land, and their supply of grain dwindled down, Jacob feared that his family would starve.  Therefore, he gathered his sons together and said, “Go back to Egypt and buy us a little more food.”

“Abba,” Judah replied sadly, as he gently gazed at the old man, who seemed to grow more and more frail, with each passing day, “The man was serious when he warned us, ‘You won’t see my face again unless your brother is with you.’  If you send Benjamin with us, we will go down and buy more food.  But if you don’t let Benjamin go, we won’t go either.  Remember, the man said, ‘You won’t see my face again unless your brother is with you.'”

5-they-get-home-and-tell-jacob

Jacob’s heart constricted, and he regarded each of his sons, before he finally settled his gaze on Benjamin, his youngest.  The heavy weight of pain that he had carried for years, seemed to grow heavier, as he contemplated losing yet another son, and tears flowed freely from his eyes.  “Why were you so cruel to me?” Jacob moaned.  “Why did you tell him you had another brother?”

“Abba,”  they gently replied.  “The man kept asking us questions about our family.  He asked, ‘Is your father still alive? Do you have another brother?’  So we answered his questions.  How could we know he would say, ‘Bring your brother down here?'”  It grieved all of them to see what the anguish their sin had brought to their father.  If only they could go back and change it all, but that wasn’t possible.

How long, O Lord, must others suffer for our sins?” Judah silently prayed, as he gently laid his hand on Jacob’s shoulder.  Guilt and shame washed over him, for his part in bringing his father to this piteous state.  The results of his and his brothers’ evil acts were far worse than they could ever have imagined.  His abba was wasting away, not because of the famine, but because of their evil act of jealousy.  No longer the vibrant man he had once been, their Abba was now a shell of his old self.  He had grieved for Joseph for more than twenty years, after Judah and his brothers had given him a death sentence, and now, they were asking Jacob to trust them with Benjamin.  Who could blame him for his fear?

Judah spoke tenderly to his father, “Send the boy with me, and we will be on our way.  Otherwise, we will all die of starvation—and not only we, but you and our little ones.  I personally guarantee his safety.  You may hold me responsible if I don’t bring him back to you.  If that happens, let me bear the blame forever.  Abba,” he earnestly said, “if we hadn’t wasted all this time, we could have gone and returned twice by now.”

Jacob sighed and prayed,  “Which is worse, Adonai?  Losing Benjamin to his brothers’ wicked schemes?  Or watching him, and my other sons and grandchildren die a slow painful death before my very eyes, due to starvation, because I’m afraid to trust You?”  Jacob blew out a deep, shuddering sigh, as he answered Judah,  “Alright.  If it can’t be avoided, then at least do this.  Pack your bags with the best products of this land.  Take them down to the man as gifts—balm, honey, gum, aromatic resin, pistachio nuts, and almonds.  Also take double the money that was put back in your sacks, as it was probably someone’s mistake.  Then take your brother, and go back to the man.  May El Shaddai give you mercy as you go before the man, so that he will release Simeon and let Benjamin return.  But if I must lose my children, so be it,” Jacob said, as he drew in a quivering breath, and clutched his right fist over his heart, which pounded rapidly.

The brothers immediately packed their belongings, with Jacob’s gifts and double the money, as soon as he announced his decision, and headed to Egypt with Benjamin.  They watched over Benjamin protectively, as they made their way to Egypt, lest any harm fall upon him.  As soon as they arrived, the brothers sought out the governor, and presented themselves to him.

When he saw Benjamin with them, Joseph’s heart soared within his chest, and he informed the manager of his household, “These men will eat with me this noon.  Take them inside the palace.  Then go slaughter an animal, and prepare a big feast.”  So his manager did as he commanded him, and led the brothers to Joseph’s palace.

When they saw that they were being taken into Joseph’s palace, his brothers were terrified.  “It’s because of the money someone put in our sacks the last time we were here,” they said.  “He’s going to pretend we stole it, then seize us, make us slaves and take our donkeys.”

Fearfully, they approached the manager of Joseph’s household, and said, “Sir, we came to Egypt once before to buy food.  But as we were returning home, we stopped for the night and opened our sacks.  Then we discovered that each man’s money—the exact amount paid—was in the top of his sack!  Here it is; we have brought it back with us.  We also have additional money to buy  more food.  We have no idea who put our money in our sacks.”

The household manager smiled at the brothers.  “Relax.  Don’t be afraid.  Your God, the God of your father, must have put this treasure into your sacks.  I know I received your payment.”  Then he released Simeon and brought him out to them.

All of the brothers rejoiced when they saw Simeon, and took turns hugging him and patting one another on their backs.  The manager then led them into Joseph’s palace and gave them water to wash their feet.  He also provided food for their donkeys.  Informed that they would be eating here, they prepared their gifts for Joseph’s arrival at noon.

An overwhelming array of emotions filled Joseph when he came home that day, and his brothers bowed low to the ground before him, presenting him with gifts from their (his) homeland.  He felt great elation as he looked at his brother, Benjamin, who knew nothing of their brothers’ treachery, and great nostalgia for his father and his homeland when his brothers presented their father’s gifts to him.  He also felt some doubt and misgiving at his brothers’ seemingly changed hearts.  Had their hearts truly changed?  Or was their professed shame for betraying him, merely a ruse?  After receiving their gifts, he asked the brothers, “How is your father, the old man you spoke about?  Is he still alive?”  With bated breath, he awaited their answer, and anxiously prayed for his father’s health.

“Yes,” they replied.  “Our father, your servant, is alive and well,” and they bowed low again.

After he expelled a breath of relief, Joseph again looked at his brother Benjamin, the son of his own mother.  Feigning ignorance, he asked, “Is this your youngest brother, the one you told me about?”  When his brothers acknowledged that this was indeed their youngest brother, Joseph was overcome with emotion.  “May God be gracious to you, my son,” he gasped, before he rushed from the room and raced to his private room.

Tears began to run down his face, as soon as he exited the dining room, and raced to his room.  Joseph quickly slammed the door behind him, threw himself on his cushions and wept with great misery.  How he longed to hold Benjamin in his arms and shower his love on him…  He yearned to see and hold his father again…  And, despite their betrayal of him, his heart ached to love and forgive his other brothers, but could he trust them again?  Finally, after shedding many tears, Joseph regained control over his emotions, washed his face, and returned to the dining room where his brothers and  his cohorts were gathered.  Then he ordered the meal to be served.

Joseph told each of his brothers where to sit, and amazed them by seating them according to their age, from the oldest to the youngest.  The waiters served Joseph and his Egyptian cohorts at his own table, and his brothers were served at a separate table, because Egyptians despised Hebrews and refused to eat with them.  Then Joseph filled his brothers’ plates with food from his own table, giving Benjamin five times as much as he gave his other brothers, and they feasted and drank freely with him.

Adonai had indeed blessed these errant sons of Jacob, by allowing them to feast in the midst of famine.  For the first time in the more than twenty years since their great sin against Adonai and their brother, Joseph, the brothers felt hope arise within them.  Could it be that He had seen that their hearts were broken and contrite?  Had they prayed to Him as their descendant, David, would do one day?

Psalm 51
New Living Translation

Have mercy on me, O God,
    because of Your unfailing love.
Because of Your great compassion,
    blot out the stain of my sins.
Wash me clean from my guilt.
    Purify me from my sin.
For I recognize my rebellion;
    it haunts me day and night.
Against You, and You alone, have I sinned;
    I have done what is evil in Your sight.
You will be proved right in what You say,
    and Your judgment against me is just.
For I was born a sinner—
    yes, from the moment my mother conceived me.
But You desire honesty from the womb,
    teaching me wisdom even there.

Purify me from my sins, and I will be clean;
    wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Oh, give me back my joy again;
    You have broken me—
    now let me rejoice.
Don’t keep looking at my sins.
    Remove the stain of my guilt.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God.
    Renew a loyal spirit within me.
11 Do not banish me from Your presence,
    and don’t take Your Holy Spirit from me.

12 Restore to me the joy of Your salvation,
    and make me willing to obey You.
13 Then I will teach Your ways to rebels,
    and they will return to You.
14 Forgive me for shedding blood, O God who saves;
    then I will joyfully sing of Your forgiveness.
15 Unseal my lips, O Lord,
    that my mouth may praise You.

16 You do not desire a sacrifice, or I would offer one.
    You do not want a burnt offering.
17 The sacrifice You desire is a broken spirit.
    You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.
18 Look with favor on Zion and help her;
    rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.
19 Then You will be pleased with sacrifices offered in the right spirit—
    with burnt offerings and whole burnt offerings.
    Then bulls will again be sacrificed on Your altar.

 

© 2019
Cheryl A. Showers

 

When All Hope is Gone…

The burden Joseph’s brothers carried on their shoulders, when nine of them, and not ten, left Egypt was crushing.  “How are we going to tell Abba that Simeon is now imprisoned in Egypt, and their governor wants to see Benjamin as well?”  Reuben choked out, as he fought back the tears that flowed freely from his other brothers eyes.  As the eldest brother, he had to be strong for the others.  “This could kill him!”

“I know,” Judah sighed.  “But perhaps El Shaddai will show him mercy.  For it was we, who sinned against Him, when we sold Joseph into slavery and death, not Abba.  This punishment should be ours alone.”

“Maybe,”  Levi said.  “But I’ve noticed that every time we sin against El Shaddai, everyone, even the innocent, ends up suffering.  Look at Abba.  He has suffered enormously since Joseph died, and look at Benjamin.  He certainly committed no sin, and yet, he too, has suffered.  Since Joseph’s death, Abba won’t let him out of his sight.  He smothers Benjamin in his grief.”

The brothers nodded in agreement, then fell silent, as they made their way home, with their donkeys.  They made camp by a river, as the sun began to set, and a few collected firewood, while others led the donkeys to the river to drink.  Then, after the donkeys had their fill of water, one of them opened his sack to get some grain for his donkey, and discovered his money on top of the grain.  He face paled, and he began to tremble, as he called for his brothers to come.  “Look!  My money has been returned; it’s here in my sack!”

Their hearts sank, as they gazed at the money in his sack of grain, and they, too, began to tremble.  Fear filled their hearts and minds, and they asked each other, “What has God done to us?”  But no one had an answer to that question.  Needless to say, no one slept well that night, and they were up before dawn.  They quickly packed their belongings, and were headed home, just as the sky began to lighten.

When the brothers got home to the land of Canaan, they went to see their father, Jacob.  There was no point in putting things off.  “Did you get the grain?”  Jacob asked, expectantly.

“Yes Abba,” Reuben spoke for the group, and continued, “but the man who is governor of the land spoke very harshly to us.  He accused us of being spies scouting the land.  We told him that we are honest men, not spies.  We said that we are twelve brothers, sons of one father.  We told him that one brother is no longer with us, and the youngest is at home with our father in the land of Canaan,

“Then the man who is governor of the land said, ‘This is how I will find out if you are honest men.  Leave one of  your brothers here with me, and take grain for your starving families and go on home.  But you must bring your youngest brother back to me.  Then I will know you are honest men and not spies.  Then I will give you back your  brother, and you may freely trade in the land'”

Tears welled up in Jacob’s eyes, as he gazed at his sons.  “He took Simeon?”  Jacob whispered and the brothers nodded, with their eyes downcast.  Then they opened their sacks, and everyone saw the bag of money, which they had used to pay for the grain, in each man’s sack.  Jacob began to wail, and he mournfully ripped his robe, as terror swept over him and his sons. Then he exclaimed to them, “You are robbing me of my children!  Joseph is gone!  Simeon is gone!  And now you want to take Benjamin, too.  Everything is against me!”

Reuben knelt down in front of his father, and the tears he had kept at bay for so long, ran down his face and into his beard.  He gently placed his hands on his father’s shoulders and waited for Jacob to look into his eyes.  Then Reuben said to his father, “You may kill my two sons if I don’t bring Benjamin back to you.  I’ll be responsible for him, and I promise to bring him back.”

Overwhelmed by grief and anguish, Jacob had lost all hope.  He had forgotten that El Shaddai, the All Sufficient God, cared for him and his sons.  He forgot the visions and dreams he had received from El Shaddai over the years.  He forgot the many times El Shaddai had provided for him and his family.  He forgot the promises El Shaddai had made to him, his father, Isaac, and his grandfather, Abraham, before him.  In his pain, Jacob was blind to the many blessings El Shaddai had given him.  He only saw what he had lost. “My son will not go down with you,” he spat at Reuben.  “His brother, Joseph, is dead, and he is all I have left.  If anything should happen to him on your journey, you would send this grieving, white-haired man to his grave.”

Beloved reader, have you ever felt such searing pain and loss?  Have you been so blinded by grief that you are no longer able to even see the many blessings God has given you?  I have.  When such agony envelops you, it is impossible to rise above it, as wave after wave of despair encompasses you.  But thanks be to God!  Even in the midst of our suffering, He is with us, ready to heal and deliver us from those broken places, if we will seek His face.  When we are overwhelmed with hopelessness and grief, let’s cry out to God, as this psalmist did:

Psalm 42
Complete Jewish Bible

Just as a deer longs for running streams,
God, I long for you.
I am thirsty for God, for the living God!
When can I come and appear before God?

My tears are my food, day and night,
while all day people ask me, “Where is your God?”
I recall, as my feelings well up within me,
how I’d go with the crowd to the house of God,
with sounds of joy and praise from the throngs
observing the festival.

My soul, why are you so downcast?
Why are you groaning inside me?
Hope in God, since I will praise Him again
for the salvation that comes from His presence.
My God, when I feel so downcast,
I remind myself of You
from the land of Yarden, from the peaks of Hermon,
from the hill Mizar.
Deep is calling to deep
at the thunder of Your waterfalls;
all Your surging rapids and waves
are sweeping over me.
By day Adonai commands His grace,
and at night His song is with me
as a prayer to the God of my life.
I say to God my Rock,
“Why have You forgotten me?
Why must I go about mourning,
under pressure by the enemy?
10 My adversaries’ taunts make me feel
as if my bones were crushed,
as they ask me all day long,
‘Where is your God?’ ”

11 My soul, why are you so downcast?
Why are you groaning inside me?
Hope in God, since I will praise Him again
for being my Savior and God.

© 2019
Cheryl A. Showers

 

Nothing Compares…

Adonai had truly blessed him.  Joseph smiled as he gazed at his wife, Asenath, who slept on their sleeping mat, her arms gently cradling their second son, Ephraim, who was born the day before.  Her belly was still swollen from carrying their son, but Joseph didn’t care if her belly stayed that way, for she was by far the most beautiful woman he had ever seen, and she was his.  After giving her a gentle peck on the cheek, Joseph slid from the covers, and walked around to the other side of their sleeping mat.

As he knelt down beside his wife and his newborn babe, he was struck by how tiny and perfect the child was.  He had ten fingers and ten toes, each one with nails.  He had long dark eyelashes, like his imma.  He smiled as the babe suckled in his sleep, though nothing was in his mouth.

Joseph stood and tiptoed quietly to the cradle, where his firstborn son, was also sleeping, his long, dark lashes resting quietly on his chubby cheeks.  He gently caressed Manasseh’s soft cheek, smiling as the toddler gave a contented sigh.  After leaning over and placing a gentle kiss on Manasseh’s forehead, Joseph quietly exited the bedroom, and walked onto the balcony, where he knelt down on his prayer mat.

Psalm 30
Complete Jewish Bible

I will exalt You, Adonai, because You drew me up;
You didn’t let my enemies rejoice over me.
Adonai my God, I cried out to You,
and You provided healing for me.
Adonai, You lifted me up from Sh’ol;
you kept me alive when I was sinking into a pit.

Sing praise to Adonai, you faithful of His;
and give thanks on recalling His holiness.
For His anger is momentary,
but His favor lasts a lifetime.
Tears may linger for the night,
but with dawn come cries of joy.

Once I was prosperous and used to say,
that nothing could ever shake me —
when You showed me favor, Adonai,
I was firm as a mighty mountain.
But when You hid Your face,
I was struck with terror.

I called to You, Adonai;
to Adonai I pleaded for mercy:
“What advantage is there in my death,
in my going down to the pit?
Can the dust praise You?
Can it proclaim Your truth?
10 Hear me, Adonai, and show me Your favor!
Adonai, be my helper!”

11 You turned my mourning into dancing!
You removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy,
12 so that my well-being can praise You and not be silent;
Adonai my God, I will thank You forever!

“How my lips praise You, the living God, who saw me in my time of trouble, and in Your great mercy, You heard my cries and delivered me from all my fears!  When my brothers tried to kill me, You, O Lord, heard my cries, and saved my life from the dark pit.  When they sold me into slavery, even then, O Lord, You heard my desperate pleas, and sent me to a kind master.  In the midst of slavery, You  set me over my master’s entire household.  Then, when his evil wife tried to seduce me, You kept me from being killed for a crime I had not committed.  Even in the dark dungeon, where I became a prisoner, lower than a slave, You raised me up, and gave me charge over the prison.

“Then, if that were not enough, You raised me again, from the dark dungeon, to Pharaoh’s second in command, over the entire nation of Egypt!  You gave me a beautiful wife, who loves me, and a son, Manasseh, to help me forget all my troubles, and my father’s family, who betrayed me.  And now, You have blessed me, yet again, with another son, Ephraim, for you have made me fruitful in this, the land of my grief.

“Who is like You, O Adonai?  Who can compare to You, my King?  Indeed, there is no one like You, Adonai.  For You are King of the Nations, and none can compare to You.  Indeed, there is no other god who would stoop so low, as to lift a prisoner and a slave from his prison!

“Adonai, I give You thanks, not only for what You have done for me, but for the seven years of abundance You have given to my wife’s people.  As the time of famine draws nigh, El Shaddai, thank You for providing for our needs by giving us these seven years of abundance, to carry us through the the dreadful famine.  Thank You for seeing to it that my children will not go hungry, nor will the people of this land, for You have provided for all our needs.

“And Adonai, I would be remiss, if I failed to ask for Your hand of blessing to fall on my father, Israel, and his household, especially Benjamin, my full brother.  Protect them, ‘Elyon, from all evil, and deliver them from the coming famine.

“O Adonai, guard my heart from bitterness.  Please, ‘Elyon, bless the brothers who betrayed me also, for my father loves them deeply, and I would not want him to suffer anymore pain and anguish by losing yet another son.  Therefore, please protect Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Dan, Naphtali, Gad, Asher, Issachar and Zebulon.  Most importantly, El Shaddai, protect Benjamin from all harm, especially at the hands of our brothers.  Don’t let them do to him, what they did to me, Adonai!  Protect him.

“Adonai, You alone are worthy of praise.  You alone are holy and just.  In You alone, I have placed my trust, and I know that nothing in heaven or on earth, nothing in the oceans and the seas, nor in the graves, indeed nothing on the highest peak of the highest mountain, nor nothing in the lowest valley can compare to You.  It is to You that I pledge my life, O Adonai, for nothing compares to You.

“In times of feasting, I will praise You.  Even in the coming famine, still, my lips will sing Your praises, for nothing compares to the greatness of knowing You, Adonai!”

Rising from his prayer mat, Joseph lifted his gaze towards the heavens, smiling, as he heard Ephraim’s wails from the bedroom.  “No, Adonai, nothing compares to You!”

© 2019
Cheryl A. Showers

Not Forgotten…

In the time after the cupbearer’s release, Joseph ran the prison like a well-oiled machine.  He cared for the prisoners, the guards and even the accounting and record books.  Indeed, no other prison or business for that matter, ran so smoothly, for the Lord continued to be with Joseph and bless him.

While he toiled in prison, a full two years later, Pharaoh had two dreams one night, that deeply troubled him.  When day broke, Pharaoh arose, and immediately sent for all of Egypt’s magicians and wise men to seek an interpretation of his disturbing dreams.  However, not one of them was able to interpret the dreams’ meaning to him, which caused him even more anxiety.  “Is there no one in this entire land that can help me?” he cried out.

“Your majesty,” the chief cupbearer finally spoke up.  “Forgive me, for today, I am reminded of my failure.  Do you remember when you were angry with your officials, and arrested the chief baker and me, sire?”  At Pharaoh’s impatient nod, the cupbearer quickly continued.  “One night, while we were in prison, both the baker and I had dreams, which greatly disturbed us.  The next morning, a young Hebrew man, who was a servant of the captain of the guard, came to care for us, and asked why we were so downcast.  So we told him our dreams, and he interpreted each one of our dreams individually, for us.  What’s more, those dreams came to pass, just as he had prophesied.  I was restored to my office, and the baker was impaled.”

“This is true?”  Pharaoh asked.  At the cupbearer’s solemn nod, Pharaoh summoned Joseph to court.

Joseph, meanwhile, was in the midst of his morning prayers, before beginning his duties as the warden’s assistant. 

Psalm 13
Complete Jewish Bible

How long, Adonai?
Will You forget me forever?
How long will You hide Your face from me?
How long must I keep asking myself what to do,
with sorrow in my heart every day?
How long must my enemy dominate me?

Look, and answer me, Adonai my God!
Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep the sleep of death.
Then my enemy would say, “I was able to beat him”;
and my adversaries would rejoice at my downfall.

But I trust in Your grace,
my heart rejoices as You bring me to safety.
I will sing to Adonai, because He gives me
even more than I need.

 

Then, as he finished his prayers, guards from the royal palace came and led him quickly out of the dungeon.  After Joseph shaved himself and changed his clothes, he was led into Pharaoh’s presence, where he respectfully knelt, his heart pounding frantically.  “O Adonai,” he silently prayed.  “Protect me and deliver me from my foes.  Give me wisdom, to know when to speak and when to be silent.  Adonai, let me speak Your words, and not my own.”

“Last night, I had two dreams,” Pharaoh told Joseph, “and there is no one here, who can interpret them, but I was told that you are an interpreter of dreams.  Is this true?”

“Pharaoh, I am not the interpreter of dreams.  El Shaddai is the giver and interpreter of dreams.  If you will share your dream with me, El Shaddai will give you an answer that will give you peace,” Joseph said gently.

Pharaoh's Dream 1

“Very well,”  Pharaoh responded.  “In my dream, I stood at the edge of the river, and I saw seven fat and sleek cows emerge, and they fed on the swamp grass.  After they came, seven more cows emerged from the river, but these cows were sickly and emaciated.  I’ve never seen such a sorry group of cows in all of Egypt!  Then, the scrawny, miserable cows ate up the seven fat cows, but even after they’d devoured them, you would never guess they’d had anything to eat at all.  For they were still as miserable and sorry looking as they were before they ate.

Pharaoh's Dream 2

“At this point, I awakened, but I quickly drifted off to sleep again, and I had another dream.  In this dream, I saw seven full ripe ears of grain growing out of a single stalk, and after that, I saw seven more ears of grain spring up, but they were thin and shriveled up by the east wind.  And then, right before my eyes, I saw the shriveled ears swallow up the seven ripe ears of grain!

“This morning, when I awakened, I summoned my magicians and wise men, and I shared these dreams with them, but not one of them could explain them to me.  Are you able to interpret these dreams?”  Pharaoh questioned Joseph.  

Joseph listened intently to what Pharaoh shared, while also listening to what the Spirit of the Lord spoke to his heart.  Now, he felt the peace that only comes from ‘Elyon, as he drew in his breath and began to speak.  “Pharaoh’s dreams are the same.  God has told Pharaoh what He is about to do.”

Joseph spoke with the authority that only comes from God, and Pharaoh and his counselors all leaned forward, to hear every word he uttered.  “The seven healthy cows and the seven good ears of grain represent seven years.  Likewise, the seven scrawny cows and the seven blighted ears of grain also represent seven years of famine.  This is what ‘Elyon, has shown Pharaoh He is about to do.

“There will be seven years of abundance throughout the entire land of Egypt, but afterwards, there will be seven years of famine.  Indeed, the famine will be so dreadful, that Egypt will forget all of the abundance from the previous seven years.  Indeed, the famine will consume the land, and it will be truly disastrous.

“Do you wonder why this dream was doubled for Pharaoh?  It is because the matter has already been decreed by Elohim, and it will happen according to His word very soon.

“Therefore, Pharaoh should look for a wise and discreet man to put in charge of the land of Egypt, so that he can appoint supervisors over the land to receive a twenty percent tax on all of the produce of the land of Egypt during the seven years of abundance.  All of the food produced during the coming seven years of abundance should be gathered.  Some should be used for food in the cities, and the rest should be stored.  This will be the land’s food supply for the seven years of famine that will follow the seven years of abundance, so that the people do not perish as a result of the famine.”

Joseph’s demeanor and his wise suggestions impressed Pharaoh and all of his officials.  Pharaoh looked at his officials and asked, “Can we find anyone else like him? The Spirit of God lives in him!”  His officials agreed wholeheartedly with Pharaoh, so Pharaoh released Joseph from his position as a slave and prisoner that day, and placed him in command of all of Egypt, second only to Pharaoh himself.

“There is no one as wise and discerning as you,” Pharaoh told Joseph.  “Therefore, today, I am placing you in charge of my entire household.  You will rule over all my people, and they will obey what you say.  Only when I rule from my throne, will I be greater than you.”  Then, removing his signet ring from his finger, Pharaoh placed it on Joseph’s finger and continued, “This day, you will not only rule my household, but the whole land of Egypt.  I, Pharaoh, decree that without your approval no one is to raise his hand or his foot in all the land of Egypt.  Furthermore, your name shall henceforth be Zaphenath-paneah.” 

Pharaoh then called his servants to bring him fine linen clothing, and a gold chain, which he placed around Joseph’s neck.  Pharaoh also gave Joseph a wife, whose name was Asenath, the daughter of Potiphera, the priest of On.  So, at the age of thirty years, Joseph took charge of the entire land of Egypt, serving in the court of Pharaoh, the king of Egypt.

Afterward, Pharaoh sent some of his servants to the royal stables, to bring his second best chariot to Joseph, telling him ride the chariot throughout the land of Egypt.  As Joseph rode the chariot through the streets of Egypt, his servants ran before him, shouting, “Bow down!” to the citizens of the land.  Thus, when Joseph left Pharaoh’s presence, he inspected the entire land of Egypt.  

In the midst of all that was happening around him, Joseph found time to give thanks to Almighty God.  For though others may have forgotten him, the Lord had not forgotten him.

Beloved reader, do you think the Lord has forgotten you?  Do you feel as though you are alone in your circumstances?  Fear not, for though a woman may forget her child, God will not forget you.  If you continually seek Him, you will find Him.  He has a plan for you, His beloved child, even in the midst of the worst circumstances.  You are not forgotten.

Isaiah 49:14-15
New Living Translation

 

14 Yet Jerusalem says, “The Lord has deserted us;
    the Lord has forgotten us.”

15 “Never! Can a mother forget her nursing child?
    Can she feel no love for the child she has borne?
But even if that were possible,
    I would not forget you!”

© 2019
Cheryl A. Showers

Supreme Over All

Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation.

~ Colossians 1:15 — NLT ~

Jesus Christ is supreme over all creation… So what does this mean and why is this important? According to dictionary.com, the definition of supreme is:

  1. highest in rank or authority; paramount; sovereign; chief.
  2. of the highest quality, degree, character, importance, etc.: supreme courage.
  3. greatest, utmost, or extreme: supreme disgust.
  4. last or final; ultimate.

Jesus is supreme over all creation…

     He is the KING of all kings…

               He is the LORD of all lords…

                         He is the CHIEF cornerstone…

                    Christ radiates God’s own glory and expresses the very character of God…

                         He sustains everything by the mighty power of His command…

                    He sits at the right hand of the majestic God in heaven…

          He is far  greater than the angels…

     His very name is above all other names…

Son of the living God
Unmatched in majesty and beauty
Peerless in glory and power
R
esplendant in holiness
E
ternal from everlasting to everlasting
M
erciful and full of grace
E
xcellent and highly exalted

Share the Love – July 2013

PrintHallelujah! I really look forward to Sharing the Love with one of my fellow bloggers each month, but I have to tell you, July 1 came really fast. I’ve known who the Lord wants me to showcase for a while, but life has a way of slipping in and throwing us off course. I’m really struggling with pain today, and your prayers are deeply appreciated. 🙂

In the meantime, I’m really excited to introduce July’s featured blog and author to some, and to present her to others, so without further ado, (drumroll please), I present CHRISTian ~ poetry by deborah annDeborah is truly a woman with a heart for Jesus, and her love for Him is evident in every poem that she writes, not for her own glory, but for His. I know this blesses the Lord, and I’m certain that’s why He wanted me to Share the Love with her. Continue reading Share the Love – July 2013

Caddo’s Seven Word Sundays!

caddo-7-word

This post is dedicated to our good friend Sis Caddo. Although she is temporary hiatus, my prayer is that she will remember how much we all love her, and I will continue with the Sis “Caddo’s Seven Word Sundays!” until she returns to us. Meanwhile, I know that she still stops by to visit her friends, and so in honor of Sis Caddo, who really loves acrostics, I tried my hand at an acrostic below. God bless you BIG Sis Caddo, we love you!!! 😀 Continue reading Caddo’s Seven Word Sundays!

On Eagle’s Wings

June 14, 2013 by 

#FWF FREE WRITE FRIDAY: IMAGE PROMPT
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photo by Matt Black, 2011 (Matt Black Photography)
photo by Matt Black, 2011 (Matt Black Photography)

Oh, that I had wings like a dove;
then I would fly away and rest!

~ Psalm 55:6 — NLT ~

With worried wrinkles in her brow
Tousled tresses tucked smoothly now
Flo’s flowered frock hangs loose and limp
Penniless pauper, forced to scrimp

Longing, lusting, she yearns for more
Searching the sky, she longs to soar
But burdens bog, too big to fly
Helpless, hopeless, too tired to try

Pausing to pray, she hears a voice
Speak to her soul, give her a choice
“Wait, watch with wit; soon you will rise
“Don’t dash or rush; you must be wise.”

Passionate praise springs from her lips
Singing, shame’s shadows now eclipsed
Radiance risen above dirt
Purify, purge away life’s hurts

Pious, prostrate revering Him
Rejoice, revere, with songs and hymns
Against all odds, hope is now born
Washed white now, she no longer mourns

Pulse pounding, eyes sparkle and shine
In God’s grace, His presence divine
Lavished in love, Her spirit springs
Swiftly she soars on eagle’s wings

© 2013
Cheryl A. Showers

Mystical Allure Award

Mystical Allure Award

My good friend, Brother Wendell Brown, gifted poet and author of the blog, Forever Poetic, blessed me with the Mystical Allure Award several days ago (Isn’t it pretty?) however, sadly, at that time, I was in a lot of pain, and I was weighed down with the heavy burden of depression, and so I thought to myself, “I’ll just respond to this when I feel better.” 

It wasn’t that I didn’t appreciate the award, because I did. The sad fact was that I was too consumed with myself to respond. Have you ever been there? I didn’t feel like doing anything… no writing… no cooking… no cleaning… no talking to anyone, not even my beloved family and friends. The worst part about all of this is that I didn’t even feel like talking to my Lord and Savior (I didn’t even realize this until I wrote the words!). Continue reading Mystical Allure Award

Daily Prompt: Turn, Turn, Turn

Daily Prompt: Turn, Turn, Turn

by michelle w. on April 8, 2013

For many of us, winter is blooming into spring, or fall hardening into winter. Which season do you most look forward to?
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Image Credit: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/2a/Spring-daisy-fleabane_-_Virginia_-_ForestWander.jpg

Spring is my favorite time of year
Petals burst forth in a glorious example of
Resurrection from a seed once dead

Imitating God’s glorious gift of
New life for all who will believe in His
Grace and His Gospel of Life

© 2013
Cheryl A. Showers

From a Humble Perspective

This post is in response to the Weekly Lite Prompts by Tilda Swift at her blog, Swift Expression. If any of my readers derives inspiration from this post and would like to do something similar on their own blog, please provide full credit to Weekly Lite Prompts by Tilda Swift (as stated above) to abide by copyright laws.

Praise the Lord! Sis Caddo Veil wrote several nonets, which were so moving, that I just had to try also. For those who don’t know, a nonet is 9 syllables on the first line, going down to 8 the next, 7 next, and so on, all the way down to 1 syllable on the last line. I tried doing one of these earlier today, and it was such fun, that I decided to have a go at it again, with this second writing prompt… 

Tilda, I know you said to choose one of the following prompts, but I couldn’t make up my mind because I liked them all, so I decided to use them all! Many blessings!
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I Am A Moth

English: moth on a surface
English: moth on a surface (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I am a lowly moth seemingly
Fragile and frail with gossamer
Wings, but look again, and see
My frailty’s but a ruse
A disguise to hide
Destruction I
Bring to
You

 “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where they can be eaten by moths and get rusty, and where thieves break in and steal.” ~ Matthew 6:19 NLT ~

English: A crown of thorns in the stores of Be...
English: A crown of thorns in the stores of Bedford Museum. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I Am A Thorn

I am a thorn, sharp, pointed, painful
Be careful or I will pierce you
My wounds can be quite deadly
I pierced the Savior’s brow
Blood ran down His face
Beware – I have
No mercy
I’ll trap
You

“But I will fence her in with thornbushes. I will block the road to make her lose her way.” ~ Hosea 2:6 NLT ~

Image Credit: http://www.angelfire.com/jazz/karen_trust /PrayerLog/Nov2007.html

I Am A Small Gray Feather

I am a small gray feather, soft, light
Though gentle and warm, there is strength
Come, My beloved and hide
In My shadow and wings
I will cradle you
Defend, protect
Rest safely
In Me
Come

He shall cover you with His feathers, And under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler. ~ Psalm 91:4 NKJV ~

Dandelion

I Am A Little Weed

I am a little weed, a nuisance
Try to get rid of me, kill me
But I will return, stronger
Meaner, more determined
I will destroy you
Suffocate you
Temptations
Better
Run!

Here is another story Jesus told: “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a farmer who planted good seed in his field. But that night as everyone slept, his enemy came and planted weeds among the wheat. When the crop began to grow and produce grain, the weeds also grew. The farmer’s servants came and told him, ‘Sir, the field where you planted that good seed is full of weeds!’

“‘An enemy has done it!’ the farmer exclaimed.”

‘Shall we pull out the weeds?’ they asked.

“He replied, ‘No, you’ll hurt the wheat if you do. Let both grow together until the harvest. Then I will tell the harvesters to sort out the weeds and burn them and to put the wheat in the barn.'” ~ Matthew 13:24-30 NLT ~

© 2013
Cheryl A. Showers

I AM Here

Image Credit: http://tfaswift.files.wordpress.com/2013/03 /shutterstock_130142627-2.jpg?w=620&h=413

Though waves billow as the storm rages
Crashing against the rocks, they crush
All of your dreams, dash your hopes
Desperate, you look up
And cry, “Jesus help!
Deliver me!”
“Peace, be still
I AM
Here.”

This post is in response to the Weekly Lite Prompts by Tilda Swift at her blog, Swift ExpressionIf any of my readers derives inspiration from this post and would like to do something similar on their own blog, please provide full credit to Weekly Lite Prompts by Tilda Swift (as stated above) to abide by copyright laws.

Praise the Lord! This is a nonet, inspired from one of my blogging friends, Sis Caddo Veil. I had never heard of a nonet before I read Sis Caddo’s, and hers just blessed my socks off and inspired me to try my hand at it. 

Many thanks to Tilda for sharing this awesome picture prompt, which was totally inspiring and beautiful.

© 2013
Cheryl A. Showers

Unquestioning

This post is in response to the Blog Challenge by Tilda Swift at her blog, Swift Expression. This is my entry for number 1.

If any of my readers derives inspiration from this post and would like to do something similar on their own blog, please provide full credit to the owner of the original Blog Challenge (as stated above) to abide by copyright laws.
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Unquestioning

Image Credit: http://dsc.discovery.com/tv-shows/curiosity/topics/ conception-through-birth-pictures.htm

When does life begin?
There seems to be some confusion…
Does it begin at conception?
Or is it true that life is mere circumstance — just a chance?

Why are we so unquestioning
When a man or woman proclaims
The thing within the woman’s body
Is not a baby, not even human?
It’s merely a  fetus, a parasite to be destroyed
By choice…

Image Credit: http://themahoganyway.wordpress.com/2009/09/18/six-weeks/

How can we deny the baby’s humanity
When only six weeks after conception,
The child has a face,
And a heart that beats
A heart that will one day love…

Why are we so unquestioning
When a man or woman proclaims
The thing within the woman’s body
Is not a baby, not even human?
It’s merely a fetus, a parasite to be destroyed
By choice…

Image Credit: http://izzym.hubpages.com/hub/Normal-Pregnancy -and-Childbirth#slide3398945

How can we not call
This precious one “Baby”
When at only twelve weeks
He sucks on his thumb
And yes — even feels pain?

Why are we so unquestioning
When a man or woman proclaims
The thing within the woman’s body
Is not a baby, not even human?
It’s merely a fetus, a parasite to be destroyed
By choice…

Image Credit: http://www.verumserum.com/media/2009/07/21-week-fetus.jpg

As time marches on,
Baby changes and grows…
With all organs in place,
By her twenty-first week,
She clings tenaciously to life!

Why are we so unquestioning
When a man or woman proclaims
The thing within the woman’s body
Is not a baby, not even human?
It’s merely a fetus, a parasite to be destroyed
By choice…

Image Credit: http://izzym.hubpages.com/hub/ Normal-Pregnancy-and-Childbirth#slide3398926

As Baby’s second trimester comes to a close,
She yawns and she stretches
And hiccups and kicks,
While she sucks her thumb.
If she were born now, this child could live!

Why are we so unquestioning
When a man or woman proclaims
The thing within the woman’s body
Is not a baby, not even human?
It’s merely a fetus, a parasite to be destroyed
By choice…

Image Credit: http://izzym.hubpages.com/hub/ Normal-Pregnancy-and-Childbirth#slide3398969

As Mommy’s belly expands and it stretches,
She knows this is no tumor or parasite…
The evidence is clear, leaving no doubt
That within the depths of her womb
Human life is unfolding…

Why are we so unquestioning
When a man or woman proclaims
The thing within the woman’s body
Is not a baby, not even human?
It’s merely a fetus, a parasite to be destroyed
By choice…

Image Credit: Huffaker Photography

And now the time has come,
This tiny human is ready to be born…
But what if now, after all of this time,
Mommy suddenly changes her mind?
Does this child have no rights?

Why are we so unquestioning
When a man or woman proclaims
The thing within the woman’s body
Is not a baby, not even human?
It’s merely a fetus, a parasite to be destroyed
By choice…

© 2013
Cheryl A. Showers

Trifecta Challenge: Wonder

Trifecta Challenge: Wonder
The Trifecta Word Challenge this week is:

1a : a cause of astonishment or admiration : marvel <it’s a wonder you weren’t killed> <the pyramid is a wonder to behold>
 b : miracle
2: the quality of exciting amazed admiration
The Wonder of His Love

“Arise, My love, you’re free!”
His whispered words awoke

Hope as He said to me
“Rise from the dust — your chains are broke!”

Enslaved for all my life
By chains of fear and doubt.
Oppressed by pain and strife,
To Jesus I cried out

Cross Background
Cross Background

“Save me, Lord — Redeem me!”
“Fear not, My child, I’m here —
I’ll give you eyes to  see…
And wipe away each tear.”

“Cast your cares on Me, Love
Because I care for you.”
Amazed, I looked above —
It seemed too good to be true.

http://truthpressure.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/gods-love1.jpg
http://truthpressure.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/gods-love1.jpg

His words came out like thunder —
“For you I chose to die.”
I gazed on Him with wonder
“You died for me… But why?”

“You are precious in My sight,
My own special treasure.
My love exceeds all heights…
I love you beyond measure.”

As He speaks His love for me,
My heart overflows with love…
I think about His beauty
And the wonder of His love!

© 2012
Cheryl A. Showers

Daily Prompt: Mix Tape

Put together a a musical playlist of songs that describe your life, including what you hope your future entails.
Daily Prompt: Mix Tape

When I read today’s daily prompt, my heart leaped in excitement. Music has been so important to me throughout my life, helping me to deal with life’s fear, life’s pain and life’s joys. I wasn’t sure how to compile all of the songs that have meant so much to me throughout my life… I think the blog would be crazy long if it covered all 51 years of my life! And then it hit me… I’ll incorporate the poem that I wrote in 1997, that dealt with much of my life and incorporate the songs into that…

Heal Me Lord Jesus

Just when I thought my life was over,
When I thought the pain would never end,
Just when I thought, I just can’t bear it!”
You came and whispered to me,
Come, you who are weary and heavy burdened…
I will give you rest.”

I knew that I wasn’t worthy.
I knew I’d never deserve it.
I’d seen too much, done too much and suffered too much
To ever receive such an offer
Of healing and love and hope from above,
But all that I needed was faith…
“For we walk by faith, not by sight…”
I live by faith in my Lord, Jesus Christ.

 

I’m unclean, no good, different!” I cried,
As my shame and my fear held me hopelessly bound.
Don’t be afraid,” You spoke,
You won’t suffer shame.
Don’t fear disgrace, humiliation is not for you.
I’ll make you forget the shame of your youth,”
You promised, and I knew it was true.

I’ve struggled for years with the rage in my heart,
Till You spoke, Cease from anger…
Don’t fret.”
Lord, I don’t think that I can.”
Trust Me, do good…
I will establish your steps…
When you fall, I’m the One who is holding your hand.”

Lord, the pain if I face it
Could drive me insane,
And the tears, once they’ve started
May never stop.”
Be still, your tears in My bottle I’ve kept.
A diary I’ve written keeps track of those tears.”

And if my father and mother forsake me?”
I’ll take you up.”
Heal Me, Lord Jesus”
Forgive them,” You said.
But they nearly destroyed me!
They used me, abused me!
They blamed me and shamed me!
I can’t forgive them, Lord don’t even ask it!
You know I’m not able, Lord, I just can’t!”
“I’ll help you, My child, and you will be blessed,
For the mercy you give will be paid back in full.”

Lord, please give me peace,
Let me know that You’re near!”
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything pray,
Give thanks, make your requests known to God.
And His peace which surpasses all comprehension,
Shall guard your heart and your mind through Me,
Christ Jesus, your Lord.”

It is my prayer that those who have suffered a troubled past will find hope and healing in the words and the songs of this post…

© 2012
Cheryl A. Showers

Story of Christmas

This Story of Christmas is the best, we are told.
It has tragedy, action and drama to boot.
There are gifts for a King – one of them gold.
And a wicked old king, a vile jealous brute!

Now, a long time ago, in a land far away,
The poor people cried for a Savior to come.
They cried out to God and they knelt down to pray,
They asked God to have mercy, and please send the One.

And the Lord who is kind, heard their cries and He said,
“I love them so much, Father, let Me be the One,
To save them from Satan, who wants them all dead.”
So the Father with love sent Jesus, His Son,

baby-jesus-mary-joseph-by-dewey
http://www.saviorsite.com/life-of-jesus/baby-jesus/

To a virgin named Mary to hold in her womb.
With Joseph beside her, to Bethlehem they did go.
She gave birth in a stable, for the inn had no room.
Surrounded by animals, while the cattle did low,

The babe laid in the manger, to rest His sweet head
While a star brightly lighted the way from above.
The shepherds cringed in fear and in dread,
While angels announced His birth and His love.

They followed the star to the stable so bright,
And knelt down to worship this glorious King,
Then left rejoicing with all of their might,
For the peace and good will that Messiah would bring.

http://www.etsy.com/listing/116649706/nativity-christmas-gift-tagsmini-cards
http://www.etsy.com/listing/116649706/nativity-christmas-gift-tagsmini-cards

From far, far away, wise men came from the east
To find the King of the Jews, the Savior of all.
They went to King Herod, that wicked old beast,
And he spoke a great lie with the greatest of gall.

“Please come back so I can go worship this King,”
While in his heart he plotted to murder the babe.
The wise men departed and gifts they did bring
Frankincense, gold, myrrh by the child were laid.

In worship they came, on their knees they did bow.
Then warned by the Lord in a dream they all had,
“We must return home another way,” they did vow.
They tricked wicked King Herod, oh my was he mad!

Then an angel visited in Joseph’s dream
And warned him to take Mary and Jesus and flee
To Egypt away from Herod’s evil scheme.
“Kill all baby boys two and younger,” he decreed.

Then sorrow and sadness was in Bethlehem.
Weeping and mourning, they cried to the Lord,
And prayed for His mercy and asked Him to save them,
From the evil of Herod and death by the sword.

http://www.amazon.com/Ron-DiCianni-WILDERNESS-Christ-CANVAS/dp/B0037K1XOW
http://www.amazon.com/Ron-DiCianni-WILDERNESS-Christ-CANVAS/dp/B0037K1XOW

But the Savior grew up strong to His mother’s relief.
Full of mercy and love, though despised by His own
Rejected, acquainted with bitterest grief,
They thought He was punished for sins of His own!

Oppressed, treated harshly, He said not a word.
Led like a Lamb to the slaughter, battered and bruised.
The Pharisees, Scribes and Priests all conferred.
Humiliated, tortured, yes, He was abused.

From prison and trial, He was led to His death.
But who understood, it was for their sins He died?
“Father, forgive them,” He gasped for a breath,
While He hung on that cross with His arms opened wide.

For God so loved the world that He gave us His Son
To suffer and die for the sins of mankind.
He paid that great price and our freedom He won,
Accomplishing the work that He was assigned.

http://pinterest.com/pin/461126449315912759/
http://pinterest.com/pin/461126449315912759/

To death, hell and the grave, He descended with power,
Preaching good news, dead saints fell to their knees.
Setting captives free, He made Satan cower
Conquering them all and taking the keys.

From death, hell and the grave, Christ in triumph arose.
Death now was defeated and Satan was too.
Saints no longer bound by sin and death’s throes.
In Christ, old things passed – Behold! All things are new!

At Christmas we celebrate the advent of Christ.
He rescued us once, and He’s coming again.
So, people get ready and look to the skies,
When He returns this time, He’s coming to reign!

© 2012
Cheryl A. Showers

 

Daily Prompt: My Hero!

Tell us about your hero.
Daily Prompt: My Hero!

cup of hot chocolate with whipped cream and co...
cup of hot chocolate with whipped cream and cocoa powder (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hallelujah! After yesterday’s sad prompt, I was excited to see today’s prompt. Yippee! I get to tell you about my hero. Before I get started, go get a cup of coffee, or a soda or some hot cocoa; get a nice comfy pillow and a warm toasty blanket, and maybe a little snack, then come on back, settle in, and make yourself comfortable, while I tell you about my Hero.

Although He is:

Faster than a speeding bullet
More powerful than a locomotive
Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound

Look! Up in the sky!
He’s not a bird!
He’s not a plane!

Mighty Mouse in Ralph Bakshi's adaptation
Mighty Mouse in Ralph Bakshi’s adaptation (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

He isn’t Superman… Although He’s simply amazing, He isn’t Spiderman… And though He’s incredible, He isn’t the Hulk… Though He can cut pollution down to zero, He isn’t Captain Planet… Though He comes to save the day, He isn’t Mighty Mouse… Though He is fantastic, He isn’t Mr. Fantastic… He isn’t the Lone Ranger… He isn’t Tonto… He’s the Light of the World, therefore, He can never be the Dark Knight…

Shall I describe my hero to you?

He is the fairest of 10,000
He is the bright and morning star
He is the Alpha and the Omega
He is the First and the Last
He is the Beginning and the End
He is my Peace
He is my Light and my Salvation
He is my God – in Him I trust
He is my Refuge and my Fortress
He is the Rock of Ages
He is the Ancient of Days
He is Hope for the hopeless
He is Rest for the weary
He is the Defender of the defenseless
He is the Author and Finisher of my faith
He is Ageless and Timeless
He is the Wheel in the middle of the wheel
He is the Lamb of God
He is the Lion of the Tribe of Judah
He is the Only Way
He is Life
He is Truth
He is a Strong Tower
He is Safe
He is Jesus…

He is the Hope that I cling to
He is Life to my soul
He is my Refuge from the storm
He is the Love of my life
He is the One that I trust

He is Emmanuel – God with me
In good times and bad
Through thick and through thin
When I’m right and when I’m wrong
He is faithful to the end

He has seen me and loved me at my worst
He has suffered with me through my pain
He has rejoiced with me in my joy
He has strengthened me in my weakness
He has conquered all my fears

He has turned my mourning into dancing
He has turned my weeping into singing
He has turned my sorrow into joy
He has turned my darkness into light
He has turned my weakness into strength

He has made a way for me where there was no way
He has released me from the bonds of shame and fear
He has loved me when no one else did
He has set me free from doubt and depression
He is my joy, He is my strength, He is my life, He is my hope…
He is my reason for living

And that’s why Jesus Christ… Son of God… Son of Man… the Resurrection and the Life… the Soon Coming King… is my Hero!

© 2012
Cheryl A. Showers

A Righteous and Merciful Judge

gavel
gavel (Photo credit: s_falkow)

“You’re compulsive,” they said.
“You have an irresistible impulse
“To perform some irrational act!”
“Oh God, is it true what they say?”
“Yes, My child. I am sorry to say
“That you, just like they,
“Do compulsively sin.”

“You’re so bossy,” they accused.
“You always take over!”
“Oh Father, that isn’t so,
“Please tell them it’s not!”
“I can’t tell them, My child.
“For since time began, man has tried to take over.
“And you, just like they, have done the same thing.”

“You’re preoccupied, irresponsible!” they charged.
“Oh Precious Lord, is this true too?”
“Yes, My child, you know that it’s true.
“For you, just like they, have lost sight of My Son.
“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness,
“Even so must the Son of Man be lifted up.
“For My Son, Jesus is the only Way!”

“You said you were a Christian,
“But you’re just a failure!” they judged.
“Oh God, I’m so sorry, it’s true!
“I’ve failed You and sinned against You, my Lord!
“I’m so sorry for this awful compulsion to sin!
“Lord, what can I do to pay for this debt?
“Forgive me Lord, judge me mercifully,” I cried

“You’re guilty, My child,
“Yet I love you so much.
“You’ve already done the only thing that you could.
“You confessed Christ as Lord,
“You confessed to your sin.
“My Son cancelled and paid for your debt
“Go now in peace, for you have been blessed,” said my Lord,
A Righteous and Merciful Judge.

© 2012
Cheryl A. Showers

I wrote this in November of 1997, when I was dealing with a painful past, as well as pain inflicted on me by the church. I am so glad that I serve the Lord of the universe, a Righteous and Merciful Judge, and I’m so glad that it is He who has judged me and acquitted me, and not man.

The LORD Your God Is With You

The LORD your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing. (Zephaniah 3:17 NIV)

Zephaniah 3:17
Zephaniah 3:17 (Photo credit: Charlotte90T)

Wow. Have you ever had one of those dark times? One of those times when your heart is heavy, and you can’t share why you’re so burdened? Have you ever grieved, and again, you can’t share what it is you’re grieving for, or why or who, but it’s there, like a weight in your chest? It’s like a lump lodged in your throat, choking off your ability to breathe or speak or even utter a sound, for fear you’ll completely fall apart and lose the composure you’re trying so desperately to maintain…

That’s where I’ve been today, and then I visited a friend’s blog, and I saw that she had done a study on one of my life verses… Zephaniah 3:17. And I heard the voice of the Lord as He spoke to me:

Beloved, be still, I Am with you
Do you remember what I told you long ago?
Do you remember what I showed you?
Beloved, I Am with you now
I’ve never left your side
I Am here –
Beside you
In front of you
In back of you
Covering you
Within you
I Am here, Beloved
I Am with  you

Beloved, I Am mighty to save you
Don’t you remember what I did for you so long ago?
Remember how I arose and showed Myself strong on your behalf?
Beloved, I was with you then
I Am with you now
I Am here –
Beside you
In front of you
In back of you
Covering you
Within you
I Am here, Beloved
I Am with  you

Beloved, I take great delight in you
I am neither ashamed or disappointed in you
Beloved, you bring Me joy ~ you’re the apple of My eye
Beloved, I Am delighted with you
I Am here, My love
I Am here –
Beside you
In front of you
In back of you
Covering you
Within you
I Am here, Beloved
I Am with  you

Hush, My love ~ be still
Let Me quiet you with My gentle love
I know you think you failed Me
I know your heart is shattered and crushed
Peace, be still ~ You have not failed Me
I Am here –
Beside you
In front of you
In back of you
Covering you
Within you
I Am here, Beloved
I Am with  you

Hush now as I sing to you a song of joy
Listen, can you hear My voice?
Beloved, do you hear the melody as I sing?
You are My beloved, My treasure, My bride
Beautiful, Adored, Worthy of My love
I Am here –
Beside you
In front of you
In back of you
Covering you
Within you
I Am here, Beloved
I Am with  you

Oh how He loves us! I am so grateful for His word today… so thankful for His love… The LORD your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing. (Zephaniah 3:17 NIV)

© 2012
Cheryl A. Showers

Jesus Christ

http://bettyseiley.webs.com/endtimesmessages.htm

Joyful and just, He is my strength
Excellent and exalted, He is worthy of praise
Savior who was sacrificed to pay for my sins
Undefiled and unjustly accused
Suffered and died so I could be sanctified and saved

http://truthinlove.com/jesus_returns/index.html

Crucified on Calvary to cleanse the unclean
Humble and holy, He heals our disease
Resurrected Redeemer soon He will return
In power He’s coming to rescue His bride
Securing her place in His kingdom to reign
Triumphant, eternal, forever, amen!

© 2012
Cheryl A. Showers

Lord, Show Me Your Ways

http://anewdaywithchrist.blogspot.com/2012/09/proverbs-3-commentary-iii-security.html

Moses knew Your ways
Others knew only Your acts
Show me Your ways, Lord

Though some walk away
I long for intimacy
Please walk with me, Lord

Let me hear Your voice
I’ll walk in obedience
To Your perfect will

Lord, show me Your ways
And Your greatness I’ll proclaim
How I love You, Lord

© 2012
Cheryl A. Showers

Heal Me, Lord Jesus

I was thinking about the post I did a couple of days ago on forgiving, and the Lord reminded me of a poem that I wrote back in 1997 when I began my journey of forgiveness. I pray that it ministers to those of you who may be finding it hard to forgive…

Just when I thought my life was over,
When I thought the pain would never end,
Just when I thought, I just can’t bear it!”
You came and whispered to me,
“Come, you who are weary and heavy burdened…
I will give you rest.”

I knew that I wasn’t worthy.
I knew I’d never deserve it.
I’d seen too much, done too much and suffered too much
To ever receive such an offer
Of healing and love and hope from above,
But all that I needed was faith…
“For we walk by faith, not by sight…”
I live by faith in my Lord, Jesus Christ.

“I’m unclean, no good, different!” I cried,
As my shame and my fear held me hopelessly bound.
“Don’t be afraid,” You spoke,
“You won’t suffer shame.
Don’t fear disgrace, humiliation is not for you.
I’ll make you forget the shame of your youth,”
You promised, and I knew it was true.

I’ve struggled for years with the rage in my heart,
Till You spoke, “Cease from anger…
Don’t fret.”
“Lord, I don’t think that I can.”
“Trust Me, do good…
I will establish your steps…
When you fall, I’m the One who is holding your hand.”

“Lord, the pain if I face it
Could drive me insane,
And the tears, once they’ve started
May never stop.”
“Be still, your tears in My bottle I’ve kept.
A diary I’ve written keeps track of those tears.”

“And if my father and mother forsake me?”
“I’ll take you up.”
“Heal Me, Lord Jesus”
“Forgive them,” You said.
“But they nearly destroyed me!
They used me, abused me!
They blamed me and shamed me!
I can’t forgive them, Lord don’t even ask it!
You know I’m not able, Lord, I just can’t!”

“I’ll help you, My child, and you will be blessed,
For the mercy you give will be paid back in full.”
“Lord, please give me peace,
Let me know that You’re near!”
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything pray,
Give thanks, make your requests known to God.
And His peace which surpasses all comprehension,
Shall guard your heart and your mind through Me,
Christ Jesus, your Lord.”

© 1997
Cheryl A. Showers

He Loves Me – I’ve Made My Choice!

My soul magnifies the Lord
And my spirit rejoices in Christ
For on His wings I have soared
“Come fly away with Me,” He enticed

“Come away, My beloved
“My treasure, My bride, beautiful one”
“But I am ugly – unloved!”
I wept as I said, “Lord I’m so undone!”

“I’ve borne your pain on My back
“The rejection and pain you received
“The fear and every attack
“I felt too, as you suffered and grieved”

“And I am always with you
“And My love will never let you go
“I’m here, if only you knew
“And My favor, on you I bestow”

“How can You love me?” I cried
“I’m dirty and ugly! I’ve cheated
“I’ve hurt You and shamed You, sinned and lied!”
“On My cross, it’s completed”

He said and He smiled, “Come dance
“My beloved and sing and rejoice!”
He ravished my heart with just one glance
He loves me – I made my choice!

© 2012
Cheryl A. Showers