The path

A path is typically prebuilt with a beginning and an end. It is built with a purpose, leading to a destination. In Jeremiah 29:11 we read that YHWH has a plan for our lives, we were created in love for a purpose. Do you realise this? Be encouraged as you read this to know that you are loved beyond measure and that Yeshua Messiah is waiting to walk with you on your life journey.

The path near our home is concrete and it runs alongside the dunes. The native Paperbark trees spread a canopy across the path shading pedestrians from the sun, wind, and rain. Within this canopy there is abundant bird life and they share their song with those who pass beneath. I love this pathway and it is my escape. I have also spent many hours walking and praying along this path and have received many messages during these hours. It has to be one of my special places. This path is not exclusively used by me, there are many people on the path at any given time of day. There are joggers, runners that pass you like steam trains, walkers, couples and families that amble along, cyclists, dog walkers and pram pushers. Each individual is dressed for their specific occasion in line with the purpose of using the path. The attire, pace, and level of effort indicating the commitment to the activity. Some focus on pace, others chat away on their phones drowning out the sounds of birds, and the pace of others is determined by companions. Everyone moves along the same path at different paces with different objectives. These persons have different beginnings and destinations, but they all move along the path in the same direction. You have no idea who they are, what they had for breakfast or what is going on in their lives, the only common factor is that we share this path.

At intervals there are gates that are used to access the path and beach. There is a continual joining and departing of people. People on this path walk with purpose and are not distracted by these gates, unless it is the gate that they need to take to get to their destination. This made me consider my walk with Yeshua. When I walk in His will do I walk with purpose, focus, and understanding? Do I really know where I am going? Am I appropriately dressed in garments that show my love for Him? Where is my focus, or am I distracted by gates and the walk of those around me?

When I walk I use a Smartwatch so that I can gauge my heart rate, distance, and speed. This allows me to adjust my pace and reach my fitness goals. However, I wonder how often I monitor my heart, pace, and spiritual fitness when walking in His will. I have set a notification to vibrate when I am not putting in enough effort. My lack of effort during a walk may be because I become distracted, feel a little lazy and don’t really want to exert myself. This vibration is enough to refocus my attention. How often do you really pay attention to the nudge of His Set-Apart Spirit of Truth? The Set-Apart Spirit was sent by the Father to remind us of the teachings of Yeshua; to convict us of sin, righteousness and judgement; and to guide, council, and prepare us for the return of Yeshua. Do you pay attention to the prompting of the Spirit? Do you adjust your focus and pace in keeping with revelations and your walk?

I use to think that I went for my walk on this path, then it dawned on me that I walk with a Companion. I need to adjust my pace and direction so that I keep up with Him. Perhaps this is why I enjoy walking on this path so much. I am walking with Him, sheltered by His canopy of love, grace, and mercy. Surrounded by His amazing creation. For the eyes of YHWH are on the way of man, and He sees all his steps. (Job 34:21) May your walk today be regulated by the Spirit of YHWH, may you feel His canopy above, behind, and before you as you step one step before the other.

Navigating your walk

Psalm 119:105

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.

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This morning I was sitting in the presence of Abba Father when my phone started to vibrate. I normally ignore any electronic devices when they ping or ring during this time, however this vibrating ring had an urgency to it and I answered to find a frustrated and lost husband on the other end. He was driving to an appointment in a loan car (our car needed a service) and the navigation system was not doing what it was designed to do. He had driven in the right direction, but not taken the turn he needed to and was off course. After jumping onto Google Maps and locating his position by finding street names he was giving me, I was able guide him, even though at times he doubted I knew where he was. After staying on the phone and providing directions he was on his way and able to recognise landmarks and the building that he needed to be at. This incident made me think about navigating my spiritual walk. I started to ponder what I was trusting to guide me on my walk. I wondered how often I missed a turn or even a stop, and end up in what seems the right direction but so far from the intended destination?

I am very good at asking for directions when I think I may be lost, but do I ask for enough guidance in my spiritual life? The feeling of being lost only happens when you are lost, when you have no idea of where you are or should be going. This made me wonder, how many of us may be lost. I am not referring to salvation, rather to walking in the plan that YHWH has for us. Jeremiah 29: 11 is well quoted, if you read the preceding verses there is a warning about not being deceived but seeking Him (verses 12-14). In verse 14 we are told that He shall be found and we shall be brought back. These verses require faith in obediently walking where He places your feet. In listening closely and intently to the voice of the Set-Apart Spirit of Truth as He guides you and reveals to you the plan of the Most High. To sit daily in His presence, not surrounded by devices, man written blogs (like this) and life, but to find that quiet chair in the garden, to put aside the things of the day, and to just sit and listen, worship freely in spirit and in truth. Revive your inner being by gathering the anointing oil so freely available from the Father’s hand. Getting your direction and bearing so that you can walk where He leads you, or to come back into step with Him.

When you are travelling somewhere these days satellite assisted devices guide you. The old street directories and big fold out maps are no longer referred and I think that mankind has lost a skill. It has however saved many arguments in the car about which way round the directory should be held. To be guided you need to know where you are going, you need to have a destination and then you need to follow the directions. Directions are of no use to the traveller if they are not followed, studied and walked. I remember when I was first diagnosed with cancer, a very dear friend told me that I had to walk in healing. To say the least this was not what I wanted to hear, I did not understand it at first but it soon became clear. The plan that YHWH has set for us, is a personal one, we walk together but on different paths but in the same direction for the glory of YHWH. We need to put one foot before the other in faith and step out, just like Peter did. Our future has been written by the Creator of the all things, He is lovingly committed to us and His Son, Yeshua, paid the ultimate price so we may approach the Father. Jeremiah 29:12 says that we will call on Him, come and pray to Him and He shall listen. In verse 13 we are encouraged to seek Him with all our hearts and that He shall be found.

Recently I studied Psalm 119. I have read it before in passing through Psalms. That may sound rather shallow, and the intent is such. It is the longest Psalm in and to read it in one sitting does not enlighten your inner being. Taking it bit by bit and praying, gives it depth and reveals the jewels hidden within the verses. Here are a few that speak of navigating life and walking in step with YHWH and His word:

Verse 1: Aleph Blessed are the perfect in the way, who walk in the Torah of YHWH.

Verse 3: Yes, they shall do no unrighteousness; They shall walk in His ways.

Verse 9: How would a young man cleanse his path? To guard it according to Your word?

Verse 25: My being has been clinging to the dust; Revive me according to Your word.

Verse 32: I run the way of Your commands, for You enlarge my heart.

Verse 35: Make me walk in the path of Your commands, for I have delighted in it.

Verse 59: I have thought upon my ways, and turned my feet to Your witnesses.

Verse 60: I have hurried, and did not delay to guard Your commands.

Verse 67: Before I was afflicted I myself was going astray, but now I have guarded Your word.

Verse 105: Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.

Verse 133: Establish my footsteps by Your word, let no wickedness have rule over me.

I would encourage you to take a little time today to check where you are, to sit before your lovingly-committed Father and check in. Be revived with the outpouring of His Spirit and may He make His face to shine upon His servants and teach them His law (Verse 135).

Amen

Walk like a child

The purpose of our walk will determine the pace and speed of steps and the urgency will govern our effort. When we are late we rush and if we have minutes to spare we may amble and stop along the way. People that walk to keep fit vary their pace so to ensure that they keep their heart rate up. We walk without thinking about walking, and I suspect we take a lot for granted. Recently, walking with my two year old granddaughter made me realise how important walking is, and I related this to my spiritual walk too.

Young believers are a bit wobbly until they find foundational truths upon which they grow faith and a relationship with Yeshua. Then reach an age when we mature and walk in wisdom, understanding and knowledge. To reach this stage we may have had to hike up rocky paths, take walks that seemed to never end and learn to strengthen our spiritual being to stay on the right path. However, walking with my granddaughter has made me realise that I have lost the joy of walks with Yeshua along the way.

A two year old has new eyes, and sees things for the first time that awe them as they discover and exciting little things. Walks with her can’t be rushed because then we would miss the flowers, bugs, ants and seedpods. No, we need to linger and investigate while collecting information in wonderment at the creation around us. She stops at a lavender bush and asks, “Nanna Birdie, what is this one?” I take a leaf and rub it between my fingers and the scent of lavender fills the air. She becomes excited and filled with wonderment, she sniffs the leaf and declares, “That is awesome! I want some.” Right there, she wants some of what I have shown her. Do you get excited about things in your walk with Yeshua and ask for some? The sad thing is that for years I have walked passed that bush and not stopped to smell a leaf, not been blessed by the scent contained within the leaf – something I took for granted. How many blessings, gifts and promises do we pass in our reading of the Word, do we pass when we shrug off encouragement?

My precious one hears the sound of a bird, she will stop and look up. A feather in the grass is investigated, a butterfly followed with fascination and awe at the beauty and flight. She flaps her arms and will sing her own song about flying in the sky like a ‘butterby’. Do we hear and actually stop to listen or do we rush on? She has made me realise that taking a walk is an adventure, a discovery. It is a time to observe and listen, a time of wonderment and awe at the creation around her. She will often look up at me, touch my hands and say, “Nanna, fly like butterby with me.” She wants to dance with me, sing with me and I don’t care what the world thinks, I flap my arms and sing with her twirling and laughing while we are on our walk. Our Father is a lovingly-committed Father and He gave His all for us, and He loves us to dance and sing with Him. He desires us to enjoy His creation. I am not suggesting we should stop every time we see a flower, but we need to check our spiritual walk. Is your walk with Elohim rushed, more like a timed march to the sound of a worldly drum? Is it prattle time when we rush off lists of demands? Do we stop to listen or heed His answers? Do we see the beauty of what He has prepared for us or is that lost in the hurry of the day?

We need to stop to discover treasures in the Word, we need to ask YHWH, “Father, what is this one?” We need to walk and become excited when we realise or discover something asking, “Can I have some?” We need to become excited in our innermost being by the realisation that He loves more than words can tell. It is important that we find that undistracted, quiet place to amble with Him, to learn to stop and listen. To ask Him to dance with you, be a butterfly.

YHWH walked in the garden with Adam, this was a time of sharing and relationship building. Adam would have spoken to YHWH about the creation, asked what is this one? Walking with Yeshua implies just that, with – together not alone. When my granddaughter tugs at my hand and tells me she wants to go for a walk she will say, “Come Nanna, let’s go for a walk please. Come Nanna.” Sometimes she will even try and put on my shoes for me. She waits at the door and does not go off on her own, she will take my hand and walk with me. If she does wander ahead she stops and looks back to make sure I am there. When she feels unsafe or threatened she knows that I am there, that I will protect her at all costs – she is mine and I love her unconditionally. She doesn’t scream or panic, she runs up to me with her arms out stretched and tells me she needs a ‘cuggle’. When she is tired she will ask to be carried. This is the third and biggest lesson I have learnt about walking with my Father.

This darling little girl knows that I love her, she does not question my love she does not doubt my love, she just knows it! Oh that I would have the same faith in YHWH!!!!! Why don’t I consider the Father’s love in this way? Yeshua said that we should have the faith of a child and for years I have battled to understand what this may mean. For me the penny has dropped. It is accepting that unconditional love, it is knowing that we are precious to Him, that Yeshua has died for us. It is knowing that we are the chosen bride of Christ and the set-apart people. We need to walk like a child, in awe and wonderment at what has been planned for us, trusting without question that our Father will never leave us, will dance with us and share His knowledge with us when we ask for ‘some’.

I know that as my granddaughter grows up our walks will change and conversations will be different, but that is the process of maturing. I will never be too old to dance with her though, never too old to smell flowers together and never too old to love her. Besides I have a baby grandson that is going to want to discover the lavender bush – how exciting!!

YHWH, I thank you Father for children who remind us that we need to be like them and have childlike faith. Will You dance with me, and make my heart like a child’s again so that I can be full of wonderment at the plans You have for me. I want to be filled with joy as I discover, rediscover and walk in Your ways, knowing that You are always near, always watching and always loving.

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Walking with Jesus is a journey

We often refer to our spiritual walk with Yeshua, but recently I have been pondering the use of the word ‘walk’. Is it not rather a journey?

When one goes for a walk it is normally a short activity that can be done on a whim. It is not something that we plan months in advance. We may walk our dog, walk around the block or walk on the beach. These are short trips, trips that generally are dictated by the weather and your mood.

A journey on the other hand is something that we plan to undertake. It involves some form of preparation to ensure that we arrive at the planned destination on time and with what is required. A journey may involve walking, but in modern society journeys generally involve different modes of transport depending on the destination and purpose. So I started to ponder and question if I was walking with Yeshua or on a journey with Yeshua.

When Moses was instructed by YHWH to lead the Israelites out of Egypt, his journey started. In Exodus 4:24 we read that on the ‘journey’ to Egypt, Moses and his family stopped for the night. Moses was confronted by YHWH as his son had not been circumcised and for Moses to continue and succeed on his journey, he needed to ensure that he was completely obedient and submissive to the instruction and directions from the Most High. Commentary explains the circumcision had not occurred as his wife was not from Israel, and Moses had not been part of Israel for many years. For Moses to continue on the journey and reach the destination he had to remove any obstacle in obedience to YHWH.

As we journey with the Most High we are to ensure that we walk in obedience to Him, that we are following His instructions and directions. This is part of remaining in relationship with Him, being convicted of sin and seeking His purpose and way as we journey. This will ensure that we will be able to complete the journey and run the race and receive our reward. Moses was instructed by YHWH how the Israelites were to prepare for their journey into the desert. In Exodus 12 we read a recount of the instructions, but let us pay careful attention to verse 11, “Wear your travelling clothes as you eat this meal, as though prepared for a long journey. Wear your sandals and carry your walking sticks in your hands. Eat the food quickly, for this is the Lord’s Passover.” In this chapter they were given instructions for the Passover, a prophesy of what Yeshua would do for us.

Verse 11, makes it very clear that going on a journey is more than a walk in the desert. It involved preparing clothing, footwear and nutrition, planning requirements and the route. If you don’t take a route you will go around in circles and never get anywhere. The journey is mapped out, it is planned and has a destination. Your life has been mapped out and planned – Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for your”, says the Lord, “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” What we need to ask ourselves is are we appropriately clothed for our journey? Do we sit at the table of the Lord and partake in Breaking of Bread? Do we clothe ourselves in the Armour of God? Do we hold the two-edged sword in our hands? Are we asking Him to guide us and show us the way? Or are we stumbling around without a plan?

Sometimes a journey may involve stopping over, residing in places for periods and the journey itself may vary in time. When Moses left Egypt with the Israelites the intent was to make their way to the Promised Land. However the Israelites complained about YHWH and were disobedient, as punishment a whole generation died in the wilderness and the journey took an extra 40 years (Numbers 14: 26-44). I have to ask myself how many times have I added extra travelling time to my journey because of my disobedience and lack of trust? Moses sets the ultimate example in Exodus 34:13-23. In this text we read a conversation between Moses and YHWH Most High. Moses asks for clear directions so that he can follow YHWH’s will exactly, Moses does not want to assume or guess – he wants to hear and succeed. Moses states that he does not want to make a single step without YHWH. Moses was seeking the direction, instruction and divine will of YHWH on the journey. This is what we should be doing, not merely going on our merry way, doing what we think. Instead we should be seeking His will and walking in obedience and relationship with Him. You and I were not accidentally dropped into the world, we were created in the image of the Most High for a purpose. We have a plan to fulfil and unless you are clothed, fed and following the map you are not fulfilling that purpose. We need to plan our journey, stop and ask YHWH Most High, “What is it that  You have planned for me to do? Please show me Your intentions so I will understand You more fully and do exactly what You want me to do.” (Exodus 34:13).

Sometimes we hear clearly from the Father, other times we may choose to walk in our way because it may seem easier, or because it makes more sense. The Israelites were disobedient and added to their journey, a 40 year detour through a small desert. I have come to realise that often what seems ridiculous or impossible is the divine will of YHWH. Often our human weaknesses hamper our ability to comprehend how the impossible can be possible. In these times we need to keep our eyes and faith focused on Him and be guided so His will can be fulfilled, and our testimony bring glory to the Father.

Where are you right now? Have you taken a wrong turn? Are you wandering around lost with no idea how to get back on track? The good news is that our Father never slumbers nor sleeps, that He is omnipresent and omnipotent, Almighty in unconditional love for you. Yeshua told the parable of the lost son. A young man that seemed to have it all planned, in human wisdom squandered his inheritance and ended up in a heap of despair. The boy realised the folly of his ways, he recognised his mistakes and returned home, to the father to ask for forgiveness. He humbly returned, expecting nothing. He was lost and broken, this is what the father saw him and welcomed him home, reinstating him into the household. Our Father is like this, He is lovingly-committed to His children and He is waiting for us to realise we need Him, to return to Him and repent of our disobedience so that He can restore and redirect us onto the path He has planned. We come to Him by acknowledging His Son, Yeshua. Yeshua is the way, the truth and the life, nobody comes to the Father but through  Him.

Yeshua is the Lamb of God, His blood saves and sets you apart. Yeshua walked the Earth, He knows what causes us to stray and get lost on our journey. Yeshua has already paid the price for your redemption, He is looking at you from your destination, not from where you are. Walk toward Him, one step at a time like a child walks toward their father’s open arms. Yeshua sees the obstacles and has His hands ready to catch you if you should stumble, He is ready to carry you over the difficult patches.

Father, I pray that Your Set-Apart Spirit of Truth would reveal Your plan, will and purpose for our journey. I pray that we would not move one single step without You, that each step will bring us closer to You and that we would bring You honour and exalt Your name as we journey homewards.

Amen

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