Every Knee Shall Bow

Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Philippians 2:9-11(NKJV)

One of my favorite Bible stories is Joseph and his brothers found in Genesis 37-50. Many of you know this story by heart… how Joseph was the 11th and beloved son of his father Jacob, so Jacob gave Joseph a fancy-colored robe to show his favoritism. Joseph had two dreams, one had eleven sheaves of wheat bowing down to his sheaf. The second dream showed the sun, moon, and stars bowing down to Joseph. His brothers scoffed at his dreams and his father rebuked him. Yet one day, after his brothers had sold him into slavery in Egypt, God used even more dreams to bring Joseph to be the second ruler in Egypt, with only Pharaoh above him. Pharaoh commanded everyone to bow the knee when Joseph rode by on his chariot, collecting grain during the years of plenty. When the famine arrived, people came from all over the region to buy grain in Egypt. Even Joseph’s brothers came from the land of Canaan to bow down before this great ruler who would sell them food. And when they bowed down, they fulfilled the prophesy in Joseph’s dreams.

And he had him ride in the second chariot which he had; and they cried out before him, “Bow the knee!” So he set him over all the land of Egypt. Genesis 41:43 (NKJV)

Someday soon, Jesus, the Son of God, will be returning, fulfilling all prophesy, as the second highest ruler in the land with only God the Father above Him. Those who love Him will immediately bow in worship and praise and adoration. Yet those who would mock and disdain Him, will also be forced to bow and acknowledge Jesus as Lord of heaven and earth. For God’s Word says EVERY KNEE shall bow on heaven and earth and under the earth and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Amen! (Philippians 2:9-11).

We can find wise ones in the scriptures who knew when and to whom to bow. The pagan captain knew to fall on his knees before Elijah and pleaded for his life (2 Kings 1:13). Mordecai knew not to bow the knee to the evil Haman (Esther 3:2). Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego knew not to bow down to the golden idol King Nebuchadnezzar had set up (Daniel 3:16-18). And seven thousand in Israel were reserved by God who knees had not bowed to baal (1 Kings 19:18). We must be discerning in knowing when and to whom to bow. We must fall on our knees in worship ONLY to the ONE True God, His Son Jesus Christ.

When Jesus comes again, there won’t be any of the mocking that occurred on His way to the cross, where they struck Him and spat on Him and pretended to bow in worship (Mark 15:19). No! Those who would mock Jesus will be thrown to the ground at His Word, just as the soldiers who came to arrest Jesus fell to the ground at His breath (John 18:6). Jesus will not be coming lowly riding on a donkey this time. He will come in great glory on the clouds of heaven!

Blow the trumpet in Zion,
And sound an alarm in My holy mountain!
Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble;
For the day of the Lord is coming,
For it is at hand.
Joel 2:1 (NKJV)

…For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels… Matthew 16:27 (NKJV)

The scriptures caution us in the last days not to be deceived. Don’t go here or there if someone says, “Look, here’s the Christ.” or “Look, there’s the Christ,” (Mark 13:21). Don’t even click the link on your phone or computer to see the latest sightings of Jesus. When He comes in glory, we will know it, just like we see the lightning when it fills the sky. And when that Day comes, every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. HalleluYAH!

I have sworn by Myself;
The word has gone out of My mouth in righteousness,
And shall not return,
That to Me every knee shall bow,
Every tongue shall take an oath.
Isaiah 45:23 (NKJV)

For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named. Ephesians 3:14-15 (NKJV)

Oh come, let us worship and bow down;
Let us kneel before the Lord our Maker.
For He is our God,
And we are the people of His pasture,
And the sheep of His hand.
Psalm 95:6-7 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: Read the story of Joseph again in Genesis 37-50. Exalt our Lord TODAY as Lord of heaven and earth. When Jesus returns, which He most certainly will do soon, you will be prepared to fall on your knees and He will claim you as His own. Jesus will forgive you, as Joseph forgave his brothers, Jesus will prepare a place for you, as Joseph prepared the land of Goshen for his family. And Jesus, Yeshua Messiah, shall reign forever and ever!

Oh, Jesus, I love and praise You!  I look forward to the day when every knee will bow in heaven and earth and under the earth and every tongue confess that You are Lord, to the glory of God the Father! O Jesus, find us faithful when You come! I love You because You created us, You came to this earth to save and teach us, conquering sin and death and the devil forever, and You live so we can live and have eternal life with You!  O Jesus, O Father, be glorified today and always!  

Those who dwell in the wilderness will bow before Him,
And His enemies will lick the dust.
The kings of Tarshish and of the isles
Will bring presents;
The kings of Sheba and Seba
Will offer gifts.
Yes, all kings shall fall down before Him;
All nations shall serve Him.
Psalm 72:9-11 (NKJV)

All the kings of the earth shall praise You, O Lord,
When they hear the words of Your mouth.
Psalm 138:4 (NKJV)

Judah, you are he whom your brothers shall praise;
Your hand shall be on the neck of your enemies;
Your father’s children shall bow down before you.
Genesis 49:8 (NKJV)

At the name of Jesus every knee shall bow,
every tongue confess him King of glory now;
’tis the Father’s pleasure we should call him Lord,
who from the beginning was the mighty Word.
(Caroline M. Noel, 1870)

Crown him with many crowns,
the Lamb upon his throne.
Hark! how the heavenly anthem drowns
all music but its own.
Awake, my soul, and sing
of him who died for thee,
and hail him as thy matchless king
through all eternity.
(Matthew Bridges, 1851)

For it is written: As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to Me, And every tongue shall confess to God.”  Romans 14:11 (NKJV)

Thank you for stopping by My Tea Cupp Prayers! If you enjoyed today’s devotion, you might also like to read On Our Knees.

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

My Jesus Name Book

Then Jacob asked, saying, “Tell me Your name, I pray.”… Genesis 32:29 (NKJV)

I love names. I keep a list of Bible names as I read His word… Asher, Crispus, Joanna, Namoi… When I was little, my parents had a name book which we looked at often, picking out names for our latest stuffed animals and plants.

When I got older, I picked out names for our children. I even chose angel names for the three babies we miscarried. I have yet to use all the names I have chosen over the years.

God likes names, too. He knows us all by name (2 Timothy 2:19). He calls us by name (John 10:3). When we get to heaven we will have a new name (Revelation 2:17). He will say to us, as He said to Mary Magdalene in the garden, “Mary.” And we will turn and look and embrace Him!

Did you know Jesus has numerous names, too? Foremost, His real name is Yeshua the Messiah, Son of Yehovah God. Somehow in the translation from Hebrew to Greek to English, His name became Jesus. I know I prefer when people call me Jenny, I wonder if our Jesus prefers to be called Yeshua?

Though they knew Him as Yeshua, after a stormy night at sea, even the disciples asked the very question upon many hearts…

…“Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!”  Mark 4:41 (NKJV)

And Job queried a similar question…

Who is the Almighty, that we should serve Him?… Job 21:15 (NKJV)

Jesus taught His disciples that He and the Father are One.  To know Him is to know the Father.  And so their names are One.  We can include all the Father’s Names for our Lord as we pray. Let’s look at a few today…

…Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.  Mark 12:29 (NKJV)

El Elohe Israel:  In Genesis there is a story of two brothers, Jacob and Esau.  Esau was the elder, but Jacob stole his birthright and blessing.  Esau was so angry that Jacob ran away for 20 years.  You can imagine how worried Jacob must have been when he returned home. Yet the Lord had already put peace into Esau’s heart, and their reunion was one of reconciliation.  With joy and relief flooding his heart, Jacob went to Shechem, setting up an altar there and calling it El Elhohe Israel, which means, “God, the God of Israel, the Mighty One.”   (Read Genesis 33)

Then he erected an altar there and called it El Elohe Israel.  Genesis 33:20 (NKJV). 

The-God-Who-Sees-Me: Going further back in time, do you remember when Abraham and Sarah hadn’t had a baby yet? Sarah gave her made Hagar to Abraham. Hagar bore Abraham a son named Ishmael. Then Hagar showed contempt toward Sarah, so Sarah sent Hagar far away. The Lord found Hagar out in the wilderness and comforted her. He told her to return to Sarah and everything would be okay. He would bless Ishmael, too. Hagar called the Lord, “The-God-Who-Sees-Me.” (Read Genesis 16)

Then she called the name of the Lord who spoke to her, You-Are-the-God-Who-Sees; for she said, “Have I also here seen Him who sees me?”  Genesis 16:13 (NKJV)

Yehovah Yirah, The-Lord-Will-Provide: Just a few chapters after Hagar in Genesis, we find Abraham taking his promised son Isaac up on a mountain to sacrifice.  Isaac, wise beyond his years, asked his father, “Look, the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?” And Abraham replied, “My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering.”  And God did provide the lamb, a foretelling of the day He would provide His Only begotten Son Jesus, the spotless Lamb, as the sacrifice for our sins.  (Read Genesis 22)

And Abraham called the name of the place, The-Lord-Will-Provide; as it is said to this day, “In the Mount of the Lord it shall be provided.”  Genesis 22:14 (NKJV)

The Great I AM:  The Israelites had been in Egypt for over 400 years, enduring great hardships and slavery.  They cried out to the God of their fathers and He heard their cries. The Lord prepared His servant Moses and called to him from a burning bush.  Moses had quite the discussion, sure that he was not the one for the job.  Finally, Moses asked God, “If I go to the Israelites, Whom should I say sent me?”  The Lord’s replied, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’ ” (Read Exodus 3).     

And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’ ”  Exodus 3:14 (NKJV)

Yehovah Rapha, Our Healing God: The Israelites had just escaped from Egypt, the Lord had parted the Red Sea and they walked through on dry ground.  Moses was leading them on through the desert, but there was a problem — no water!  Finally, after three days, they found water, but it was bitter. What could they do?  The Lord showed Moses a tree and he cast it into the waters to make them sweet, proving that the Lord could heal waters as well as His people.  Yehovah Rapha, Our Healing God, leads us to our final Name for today.  (Read Exodus 15:22-27).

If you diligently heed the voice of the Lord your God and do what is right in His sight, give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have brought on the Egyptians. For I am the Lord who heals you.”  Exodus 15:26 (NKJV)

Savior, Messiah:  It’s so interesting that when Jesus, our healing God, healed people in the New Testament, He often said to them first, “Daughter, your sins are forgiven you.”  The gift of forgiveness and healing often went hand in hand.  Just as Jesus saves us from our sins, He heals our diseases.  And just as Moses lifted up a serpent in the wilderness, so those who had snake bites could look up at it and be healed, Jesus was lifted up on a cross, so that whoever looks to Him will be saved, too.  (Read Numbers 21:4-9 and John 3:14-17).

And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:14-15 (NKJV)

Dear Ladies, Worship the King of kings in all holiness.  He is the Lion and the Lamb, the Fire and the Water, the Locust and the Honey, the Beginning and the End, our Judge and our Redeemer.  Jesus is our Everything!  As you face the battles ahead, march forth, victoriously exalting The GREAT I AM, trusting in His goodness. For someday soon, Jesus is coming on the clouds in glory to claim His own.

Jesus said, “I am. And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven.” Mark 14:62

Today’s TEACUPP:  Select one of the Bible stories above to read for further study. When you exalt our Lord today, try using some of these other names to praise Him.  Perhaps there is one name that is especially important to you at this time in your life (i.e. Yehovah Rapha for healing). Look for other names for our Lord when you read your Bible. God bless you, dear one, as you exalt His Name.  The Father is waiting to hear from you!

P.S. For another wonderful NAME, read Exodus 17:8-16.

…I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob… Mark 12:26 (NKJV)

Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And forget not all His benefits:
Who forgives all your iniquities,
Who heals all your diseases.  Psalm 103:2-3 (NKJV)

Lift up your heads, O you gates!
And be lifted up, you everlasting doors!
And the King of glory shall come in.
Who is this King of glory?
The Lord strong and mighty,
The Lord mighty in battle.
Lift up your heads, O you gates!
Lift up, you everlasting doors!
And the King of glory shall come in.
Who is this King of glory?
The Lord of hosts,
He is the King of glory. 
Psalm 24:7-10 (NKJV)

 Let all those who seek You rejoice and be glad in You;
Let such as love Your salvation say continually,
“The Lord be magnified!
Psalm 40:16 (NKJV)

 The God who reigns on high, the great archangels sing, and “Holy, holy, holy,” cry, “Almighty King!” Who was and is the same, and ever more shall be, Yehovah, Father, Great I AM, we worship Thee.

(The God of Abraham Praise by Thomas Olivers, 1770, verse 3, based on Jewish Doxology)

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 

 

My God Grocery Store

He has filled the hungry with good things,
And the rich He has sent away empty. 
Luke 1:53 (NKJV)

Today’s topic is GROCERIES, something we all need every day!  But a little note before I get to that: There were three current event topics the Lord put on my heart as the new year began… vaccine passports, the mark of the beast, and grocery shortages.  Recently, I received a message from a reader who did not want to hear about these things for they brought her fear and anxiety.  I’m so sorry that all the news is not good news, just like God’s Word is a mixture of wonderful promises for believers and terrible wrath for the unbelieving.  Sometimes we must talk about these hard subjects which ultimately push us closer to Jesus for His love and comfort.  If you are fearful, I encourage you to read Fear Not, Dear One.  If you need comfort, remember that God is Near, Dear One. If you are discouraged, Look up to Jesus and keep reading His Word, using your favorite verses to pray back to Him. If you are still undecided about Jesus, I urge you with all my heart to Get on the Ark and Come to the Wedding. May Jesus bless your tea time, dear one.  And thank you for understanding that I must say what the Lord has put on my heart,  for if I remain completely silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for God’s children from another place, and I and my house will perish, for the Lord has called me (and you!) for such a time as this (Esther 4:14).  Now, let’s talk about those groceries…

“Behold, the days are coming,” says the Lord God,
“That I will send a famine on the land,
Not a famine of bread,
Nor a thirst for water,
But of hearing the words of the Lord.
They shall wander from sea to sea,
And from north to east;
They shall run to and fro, seeking the word of the Lord, but shall not find it.  Amos 8:11-2 (NKJV)

For over a year now, we’ve been hearing about the possibility of grocery shortages.  At first few believed it, but now, especially in highly-populated areas, people are beginning to notice empty store shelves.  Like most predictions, if it doesn’t happen right way, people quit believing.  “Didn’t Jesus say He is coming soon?” some scoffers may taunt us.  Yes, He did, and I still believe Him!  For with the Lord a day is like a thousand years and a thousand years is like a day (2 Peter 3:8). 

As I was reading the book of Revelation last year, I noticed it also prophesies a time of grocery shortages.  This comes with the third seal in Revelation 6.  Now some say the Church will be raptured (taken to heaven) between Revelation 3 and 4.  Yet others see the rapture occurring between seals five and six. No matter your thoughts on when the rapture could occur, it seems best to prepare as if we stay until the end of the tribulation, yet pray for Jesus to spare us from this time of trial and take us sooner.  

...and there will be famines and troubles. These are the beginnings of sorrows. Mark 13:8

When I was a little girl, I saw my first example of storing up for a grocery shortage, while playing at the neighbor’s house across the street.  This family happened to be Mormon. In their basement were extra shelves stocked with canned goods, much like a grocery store.  I asked my friend about it, who kindly explained that their group required all families to keep a storeroom in case there was ever a grocery shortage.  That was 50 years ago, what a good idea!  

As I began to hear of shortages and supply-chain issues last year, I kept my eyes open for what God’s Word says about groceries, jotting down His promises.  We should not be surprised that our Lord has MUCH to say about food!  For Jesus, the Bread of Life, who provided for the Israelites in the wilderness with His special Manna – “Bread from Heaven,” knows how to care for His children.  Be sure to read all the way to the end of this devotion for many encouraging Bible food stories. I do not want you to be anxious, for He has so many promises for us about groceries!  

Write these promises on notecards and post them in your kitchen cupboards this week:

And Abraham called the name of the place, The-Lord-Will-Provide; as it is said to this day, “In the Mount of the Lord it shall be provided.”  Genesis 22:14 (NKJV)

And he blessed Joseph, and said: “God, before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked, The God who has fed me all my life long to this day.  Genesis 48:15 (NKJV)

So when they measured it by omers, he who gathered much had nothing left over, and he who gathered little had no lack. Every man had gathered according to each one’s need.  Exodus 16:18 (NKJV)

For thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘The bin of flour shall not be used up, nor shall the jar of oil run dry, until the day the Lord sends rain on the earth.’ ” 1 Kings 17:14 (NKJV)

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies… Psalm 23:5 (NKJV)

The young lions lack and suffer hunger;
But those who seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing.  Psalm 34:10 (NKJV)

They shall not be ashamed in the evil time,
And in the days of famine they shall be satisfied.  Psalm 37:19 (NKJV)

Who satisfies your mouth with good things,
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.  Psalm 103:5 (NKJV)

For He satisfies the longing soul,
And fills the hungry soul with goodness.  Psalm 107:9 (NKJV)

He has given food to those who fear Him;
He will ever be mindful of His covenant.  Psalm 111:5 (NKJV)

The eyes of all look expectantly to You,
And You give them their food in due season.
You open Your hand
And satisfy the desire of every living thing.  Psalm 145:15-16 (NKJV)

Who executes justice for the oppressed,
Who gives food to the hungry.
The Lord gives freedom to the prisoners.  Psalm 146:7 (NKJV)

The Lord will not allow the righteous soul to famish,
But He casts away the desire of the wickedProverbs 10:3 (NKJV)

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
For they shall be filled.  Matthew 5:6 (NKJV)

Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?  Matthew 6:26 (NKJV)

Blessed are you who hunger now,
For you shall be filled.
Blessed are you who weep now,
For you shall laugh. Luke 6:21 (NKJV)

Then He said to His disciples, “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; nor about the body, what you will put on.  Life is more than food, and the body is more than clothing. Luke 12:22-23 (NKJV)

And do not seek what you should eat or what you should drink, nor have an anxious mind. For all these things the nations of the world seek after, and your Father knows that you need these things. But seek the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added to you. Luke 12:29-31 (NKJV)

And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19 (NKJV)

They shall neither hunger anymore nor thirst anymore; the sun shall not strike them, nor any heat.  Revelation 7:16 (NKJV)

Now that your cupboards are full of God’s food promises, guess what He wants you to do? The Lord calls us to share our food:

But He answered and said to them, “You give them something to eat.”…  Mark 6:37 (NKJV)

Trust in the Lord, and do good;
Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.  Psalm 37:3 (NKJV)

He who has a generous eye will be blessed,
For he gives of his bread to the poor.  Proverbs 22:9

And Elijah said to her, “Do not fear; go and do as you have said, but make me a small cake from it first, and bring it to me; and afterward make some for yourself and your son.”  1 Kings 17:13 (NKJV)

For I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in.  Matthew 25:35 (NKJV)

He answered and said to them, “He who has two tunics, let him give to him who has none; and he who has food, let him do likewise.”  Luke 3:11 (NKJV)

But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.  Hebrews 13:16 (NKJV)

What else does He call us to do? He calls us to work hard and stock up for the hard times…

Go to the ant, you sluggard! Consider her ways and be wise, which, having no captain, overseer or ruler, provides her supplies in the summer, And gathers her food in the harvest.  Proverbs 6:6-8 (NKJV)

He calls us to plant gardens:

The Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there He put the man whom He had formed.  Genesis 2:6 (NKJV)

This shall be a sign to you: You shall eat this year such as grows of itself, And in the second year what springs from the same; Also in the third year sow and reap, Plant vineyards and eat the fruit of them. 2 Kings 19:29 (NKJV)

God also gives us petitions to pray for food:

Give us this day our daily bread.  Matthew 6:11 (NKJV)

…Give me neither poverty nor riches—
Feed me with the food allotted to me;
Lest I be full and deny You,
And say, “Who is the Lord?”
Or lest I be poor and steal,
And profane the name of my God.  Proverbs 30:8-9 (NKJV)

Arise, cry out in the night,
At the beginning of the watches;
Pour out your heart like water before the face of the Lord.
Lift your hands toward Him
For the life of your young children,
Who faint from hunger at the head of every street.  Lamentations 2:19 (NKJV)

And, dear one, He calls us to be encouraged by His many food miracles. How about reading one of these stories each day this week. Take comfort in God’s Word.  Go to God’s Grocery Store and eat His Words today.  Here are a few stories to encourage you:

  • Bread from Heaven, Exodus 16
  • Elijah and the Widow, 1 Kings 17; 
  • Three Food Miracles, 2 Kings 4.
  • Prices Drop Overnight, 2 Kings 7; 
  • Feeding the 5000, Matthew 14:13-21;
  • Don’t Worry, Luke 12:22-28; 
  • Finally, Remember what brought the Prodigal Son home — food! Luke 15:11-32.  We decree right now, in the name of Jesus Christ and the blood He shed on the cross that the coming grocery shortages will bring all repentant prodigals home.  HalleluYAH!

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Now, dear one, I want you to be especially careful.  Remember how Esau sold his birthright for just one bowl of lentil stew (Genesis 25:34, Hebrews 12:15-16)?  Do not sell your birthright to heaven for a trip to the grocery store! Do not take the mark of the beast to buy groceries! Trust in the Lord, claim these promises, read the miraculous stories, keep feeding on God’s Word and He will provide all you need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. 

Your words were found, and I ate them,
And Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart;
For I am called by Your name,
Lord God of hosts.  Jeremiah 15:16 (NKJV)

I have been young, and now am old;
Yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken,
Nor his descendants begging bread.  Psalm 37:15 (NKJV)

Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness.  2 Corinthians 9:10 (NKJV)

Moreover those who were near to them, from as far away as Issachar and Zebulun and Naphtali, were bringing food on donkeys and camels, on mules and oxen—provisions of flour and cakes of figs and cakes of raisins, wine and oil and oxen and sheep abundantly, for there was joy in Israel.  1 Chronicles 12:40 (NKJV)

And He shall stand and feed His flock
In the strength of the Lord,
In the majesty of the name of the Lord His God;
And they shall abide,
For now He shall be great
To the ends of the earth.  Micah 5:4 (NKJV)

And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.  Romans 5:3-5 (NKJV)

 I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. Philippians 4:12 (NKJV)

Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”  Hebrews 13:5 (NKJV)

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 

The Only Mark for Me

Do you have any distinguishing marks on your body?  Many people have birth marks of one sort or another.  Both my daughter and I have “stork bite” marks, red marks at the napes of our necks and hairlines, visible when we were newborns.  When we grew hair, no one could see these marks, but they are still there.  Even Jesus knows these marks are hiding under the hair He has counted.

Did you know God marks His children? The first person He marked was a murderer!  Do you remember the story of Cain and Abel, Adam and Eve’s first two sons?  Cain and Abel both brought offerings to the Lord, but God only accepted Abel’s pure offering. Cain became jealous of Abel, killing him in the field.  The Lord sentenced Cain to be a wanderer, yet did not want anyone to kill Cain, so He put a mark on him…

And the Lord said to him, “Therefore, whoever kills Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold.” And the Lord set a mark on Cain, lest anyone finding him should kill him. Genesis 4:15 (NKJV)

God used marks again when the Israelites were preparing to flee Egypt. Moses and Aaron had brought the Pharaoh and Egyptians through nine plagues, the tenth was yet to come. The tenth plague would have the angel of death killing the first born of all the Egyptians. In order to protect His people, God instructed Moses to have them mark the two doorposts and lintel of their homes with the blood of a lamb. When the Lord passed through Egypt that night, the destroyer left all the houses alone with the mark of blood on the doorposts and lintels, the angel of death “passed over” these homes. It wasn’t long until the Israelites heard the wailing and grief of the Egyptians as they realized they had lost their firstborn children. The Israelites were finally able to leave Egypt after 430 years because of the mark on their door frames.

And they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses where they eat it. Exodus 12:17 (NKJV)

For the Lord will pass through to strike the Egyptians; and when He sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the Lord will pass over the door and not allow the destroyer to come into your houses to strike you. Exodus 12:23 (NKJV)

It seems that God wants to be the only One to put marks upon us. When we read the laws in Leviticus, we learn that He didn’t even want people to get tatoos. Can you imagine it, tatoo parlors in Bible times?! This might be a surprise to the many tatoo-bearing folks today…

You shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor tattoo any marks on you: I am the Lord. Leviticus 19:28 (NKJV)

In Ezekiel we read where marks were and will be used once again. Ezekiel’s marks indicate a remnant saved when Jerusalem was raided and people were carried off to Babylon. It also points to the end times, just before Jesus returns to reign, finally locking up Satan for 1000 years. Read the following verse to see how marks will be used again to protect God’s people, just as they did during the Exodus…

And the Lord said to him, “Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and cry over all the abominations that are done within it.” Ezekiel 9:4 (NKJV)

But, dear ladies, there is one mark. you do NOT want to take, that is the mark of the beast. On a recent Above Rubies podcast, Nancy Campbell remembered that when she was growing up, she always heard, “Don’t take the mark of the beast!” Over and over, it was drilled into their heads from the pulpit and at home, “Don’t take the mark!” As a young girl, Nancy knew she did not want that mark, all she wanted was Jesus. Nancy wonders, why aren’t the churches preaching this today?

Most likely, the enemy got ahold of the pastors and told them not to talk about end times. If people don’t know about it, the devil will be more likely to catch them in his “mark-trap.” But he can’t fool us, we know the end of the story, it is already written for us! It’s a happy, happy ending for all believers! Read Revelation and you will see how Jesus comes to reign in victory and all His children who do not receive the mark of the beast will reign with Him. HalleluYAH! Let’s take a look into the future with the Disciple John who saw the vision he recorded in Revelation…

First, God promises to write on all Believers our new names…

I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name. Revelation 3:12 (NKJV)

Then, the Lord promises to seal all His servants on our foreheads…

Then I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God. And he cried with a loud voice to the four angels to whom it was granted to harm the earth and the sea, saying, “Do not harm the earth, the sea, or the trees till we have sealed the servants of our God on their foreheads.” Revelation 7:2-3 (NKJV)

When the destroyers come, they will be instructed not to harm us or any plant or animal…

They were commanded not to harm the grass of the earth, or any green thing, or any tree, but only those men who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads. Revelation 9:4 (NKJV)

AND, God warns us NOT to take the mark of the beast! He explains how you won’t be able to buy or sell without this mark (doesn’t this sound a lot like what is starting to happen with vaccine passports?)…

He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Revelation 13:16-17 (NKJV)

Did you know that in Sweden they have the technology to make the mark of the beast a reality, inserting microchips into people’s hands so they can buy and sell? Pray hard for this not to come to America! Lord Jesus, give us more time to reach the lost with Your salvation before You come to take us home!

Those who take the mark of the beast will experience unspeakable torment…

Then a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name.” Revelation 14:9-11 (NKJV)

Those of us who do not give in to the mark of the beast will have a victory party in heaven…

And I saw something like a sea of glass mingled with fire, and those who have the victory over the beast, over his image and over his mark and over the number of his name, standing on the sea of glass, having harps of God. Revelation 15:2 (NKJV)

Those still on earth who have taken the mark will receive God’s bowls of wrath…

So the first went and poured out his bowl upon the earth, and a foul and loathsome sore came upon the men who had the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image. Revelation 16:2 (NKJV)

And all who did not take the mark of the beast on their foreheads or hands will reign with Christ for a thousand years…

And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. Revelation 20:4 (NKJV)

Don’t take the mark of the beast, dear one! Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, be His child, accept only the mark of His Holy Spirit. Christ Jesus, Messiah Yeshua, is the only Mark for me. Be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord (1 Corinthians 15:58).

Today’s TEA CUPP: Read Malachi 3:16-18 and Revelation 3:7-12 and be encouraged. Stand strong for Jesus. Keep God’s Word. Persevere through every trial. Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown. And God will write on YOU His new name.

So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.  Romans 8:8 (NKJV)

They shall see His face, and His name shall be on their foreheads. Revelation 22:4 (NKJV)

For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? Matthew 16:25-27 (NKJV)

For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. John 3:17 (NKJV)

I’ve Got My Passport

For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Philippians 3:20 (NKJV)

I’ve got my passport, how about you? I remember when I got my first passport. I was so excited because my high school German class was taking a trip to Germany. When we traveled there in June of 1984, the Cold War was still going strong, the Berlin Wall standing sentinel between East and West. One day our tour group had the opportunity to travel into East Berlin for a few hours. We all nervously waited as we went through Check-point Charlie and exchanged money to purchase lunch. The contrast between the free West and Communist East Berlin were so extreme. The West was full of lights and music and life and people in the streets, the East was very somber and stony and empty. After a lunch (which I did not enjoy) in the basement of one of the stony buildings, we were all thankful to head back to West Berlin. I wonder if the eyes of the East Germans (whose flinty faces matched the buildings) would have lit up to head out with us through Check-point Charlie?

Another somber stop on our Germany tour was Dachau Concentration Camp near Munich, Germany. This was the the first of the many horrific camps where Jews and political dissenters were tragically killed by Nazis before and during WW II. Outside the camp was a sign that has stuck with me forever, “Never Again” it proclaimed. Never Again would people be put in camps and given medical injections against their will. Never Again would a government be allowed to exterminate groups of people they didn’t like. Never Again would others stand by and do nothing as euthanasia was carried out in their backyards. Never Again.

These three things…passports, communism, and Never Again… have been swirling through my thoughts of late. There is much talk of requiring a vaccine passport, a document that would allow you to travel and make purchases if you have received the experimental injection. Unlike my first passport to travel to another country, I won’t welcome this one. The more governments push such mandates, the more we are like communist nations, no longer living happy free lives, but living somber stony lives under tyrants. And now there is talk of having “camps” where people will be relocated if they do not comply with the mandates. This time, instead of trying to exterminate God’s chosen nation of Israel, the target will be His Bride, the Church. Camps much like Dachau in Germany, are already being constructed in Australia and even in Washington State, USA. Have people forgotten: Never Again?

Well, I have not forgotten. I remember trembling as I read that sign, “NIE WIEDER,” as a teenager. I remember the horror of seeing the photos and learning what really went on in those rooms full of ovens. I remember being there with my best friend from grade school who had even invited me to her Bat Mitzvah. I remember reading Diary of Anne Frank and Corrie Ten Boom’s The Hiding Place. I have not forgotten, and I pray that I can be brave like Anne Frank and Corrie Ten Boom.  In my heart of hearts, I cry out to the Lord, “Never Again.”  

I already have my passport to the place where I am going. I have no need of a vaccine passport because my citizenship is in heaven.  The only passport I want or need is salvation in Jesus Christ. The only mark I want or need is the seal of His Holy Spirit. Where I am going will be more beautiful than the castles we visited on the happier days of our German tour.  My Savior is preparing a mansion for me in heaven.  That is my true home and the home of all who call on the name of the Lord Jesus. We are strangers and aliens on earth, for ever since God told Abram to get out of his country (Genesis 12:1), we, His children, have been anticipating the Promised Land. We belong in heaven, that glorious place where we will pass through “Check-point Peter” to see Jesus face to face, bowing before His throne, casting crowns at His feet, and worshipping the Father and the Son in all majesty. Our passports are ready and our trip to our beautiful forever is soon.

Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear. Hebrews 12:28 (NKJV)

 For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.  Philippians 1:21 (NKJV)

…rejoice because your names are written in heaven.  Luke 10:20 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: Prepare your passport, dear ladies… your passport to heaven. How do you get it ready? By making your heart right with Jesus, confessing your sins, repenting, and seeking Him with all your heart. You can even share a cup of tea with Him each day as you read His Word and pour your heart out to Him in prayer. Read Revelation 4 for a beautiful picture of heaven. Then you will be ready for that great “Hallelujah Day” when He calls His children home. Your passport will be signed, sealed and delivered by the blood of the Lamb.

And it shall come to pass
That whoever calls on the name of the Lord
Shall be saved.
Acts 2:21 (NKJV)

For here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come. Hebrews 13:14 (NKJV)

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.  1 Peter 1:3 (NKJV)

Then the righteous will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears to hear, let him hear! Matthew 13:43 (NKJV)

Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.  Luke 12:32 (NKJV)

…We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God.  Acts 14:22 (NKJV)

For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed with our habitation which is from heaven. 2 Corinthians 5:1-2 (NKJV)

…Who will deliver me from this body of death?  I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord! Romans 7:24-25 (NKJV)

Thank you for stopping by My TEA CUPP Prayers. If you enjoyed today’s devotion, you may also like to read Come to the Wedding and Steadfast and Stouthearted and Get on the Ark and Fear Not, Dear One.

These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For those who say such things declare plainly that they seek a homeland. And truly if they had called to mind that country from which they had come out, they would have had opportunity to return. But now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them. Hebrews 11:13-16 (NKJV) 

“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know.” John 14:1-4 (NKJV)

Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown. He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name. Revelation 3:10-12 (NKJV)

Thank you to Trip Advisor for the Never Again photo.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982  

Looking Up at the Big Blue Sky

Today’s post first ran ten years ago, on February 22, 2011. As I started to write about “Looking Up” in this New Year of 2022, the Lord reminded me I had written about this before. So today, I share an updated devotion with a surprise ending for you.  Little did I know that 9 months after writing this post, I would hold in my arms the desire of my heart — a brand new baby boy, be living in a different house, and my husband would have a new job! That little boy is now 10 years old!  Since that time we’ve had many joys and many sorrows, but through it all we continue to LOOK Up to Jesus, our Messiah.  As our world crumbles under covid, mandates, and immorality, may we all pray continuously to the Father and keep LOOKING UP to Him, our only hope!  Alleluia, Jesus is coming! His children win!

Then I turned and raised my eyes and LOOKED…  Zechariah 6:1 (NKJV)

LOOKING unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith… Hebrews 12:2 (NKJV) 

Do you LOOK UP?  When I was little, I always wanted to be near a window to catch a glimpse of the blue sky.  If I could just see the sky, I could smile up at God.  On my walks home from school I would smile at the puffy clouds and talk to God about my day.  When I was a teenager and started running, it was that blue sky that kept me going.  When my college cross country team died in a plane crash, I LOOKED UP at the dreary November atmosphere and questioned the God in charge of the universe, and decided I didn’t trust Him anymore.  After two years without God or my blue sky, the sun finally shone for me when dear friends introduced me to Jesus Christ. Jesus took my broken soul and washed away my sins, making my sky blue again.

Now I’m blessed to live in the Big Sky State of Montana, where the sky really is bluer than anywhere in the world (according to friends from Rhode Island).  Even though I live in a narrow valley, I can see a big blue strip up above each day.  As I sit by my “Daniel” window for my morning TEA CUPP, I LOOK UP at the still dark, star-speckled sky and whisper, “Good morning, Jesus.” While I pray, the sky lightens, the day dawns, and I’m having TEA with Jesus under the big blue heavens.

You know, when we choose to LOOK UP to Jesus, no matter what our circumstances, life tends to LOOK UP after all.  In recent years we’ve lost 3 babies, 3 cats, a job, and other great sadnesses.  I could look away from God as I did as a college student, but you know what that means?  If we aren’t looking up to Jesus, where are we looking?  We are looking down to Satan, and I don’t want to look there!  So, I keep LOOKING UP…I want to encourage you to do the same through God’s Word.

In the book of Acts we read about a deacon named Stephen.  For his preaching of God’s Word, Stephen became the first martyr of the Christian faith.  Just before he was stoned to death, Stephen called to the crowd…

…LOOK! I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God!. Acts 7:56 (NKJV)

But their hearts were too hard and their eyes closed, so they could not see Jesus.  And they killed Stephen. Jesus, help us to not be like those men.  Let our hearts be softened and our eyes opened as we LOOK UP at the sky for Your coming.

Are you having trouble LOOKING UP?  It might be because of your sins. When this happens, we must ADMIT our sins to Jesus…

For innumerable evils have surrounded me;
My iniquities have overtaken me, so that I am not able to LOOK UP;
They are more than the hairs of my head;
Therefore my heart fails me.
Psalm 40:12 (NKJV)

Did you know Jesus CALLS us to LOOK UP?

Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to happen, LOOK UP and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near. Luke 21:27-28 (NKJV)

LOOKING for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works. Titus 2:13-14 (NKJV)

Then He brought him outside and said, “Look now toward heaven… Genesis 15:5 (NKJV)

While we are waiting for Jesus to return, He CALLS us to LOOK UP to Him as an example of how to live our lives…

If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are ABOVE, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. Colossians 3:1-2 (NKJV)

But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, LOOKING for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. Jude 20-22 (NKJV)

…LOOKING for and hastening the coming of the day of God, 2 Peter 3:11-12 (NKJV)

…and looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke and gave the loaves to the disciples… Matthew 14:19 (NKJV)

I UNDERSTAND in my story how God has helped me to LOOK UP to Him each day…

I will LIFT UP MY EYES to the hills—
From whence comes my help?
My help comes from the LORD,
Who made heaven and earth.
Psalm 121:1-2 (NKJV)

Unto You I LIFT UP MY EYES,
O You who dwell in the heavens.
Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their masters,
As the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress,
So our eyes LOOK to the Lord our God,
Until He has mercy on us.  Psalm 123:1-2 (NKJV)

But we SEE JESUS, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone. Hebrews 2:9 (NKJV)

And He PROMISES that one day while we are LOOKING UP He will come again…

And He said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, hereafter you shall SEE HEAVEN open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.” John 1:52 (NKJV)

“Men of Galilee, why do you stand GAZING UP into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.” Acts 1:11 (NKJV)

Behold, He is coming with clouds, and EVERY EYE WILL SEE HIM, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen. Revelation 1:7 (NKJV)

Blessed are those servants whom the master, when he comes, will find watching… Luke 12:37 (NKJV)

LIFT UP YOUR EYES to the heavens,
And look on the earth beneath.
For the heavens will vanish away like smoke,
The earth will grow old like a garment,
And those who dwell in it will die in like manner;
But My salvation will be forever,
And My righteousness will not be abolished.
Isaiah 51:6 (NKJV)

And we can petition our Father in heaven as we LOOK UP to Him!

My voice You shall hear in the morning, O LORD;
In the morning I will direct it to You,
And I will LOOK UP.
Psalm 5:3 (NKJV)

O our God, will You not judge them? For we have no power against this great multitude that is coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but our EYES are upon YOU. 2 Chronicles 20:12 (NKJV)

But my EYES are upon YOU, O God the Lord;
In You I take refuge;
Do not leave my soul destitute.
Psalm 141:8 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: Here’s a unique story to complete our devotion today: Will you consider that perhaps Jesus first miracle will also be His last? Read John 2:1-11, The Wedding at Cana.  In this account, the wedding party ran out of water, so Jesus performed the miracle of turning water into wine, better than any wine they had ever tasted. The master of the banquet was so amazed that the good wine came last.  Dear ones, the same is true for us today. The peace and joy and comfort we receive from the Lord now are just a foretaste of the wedding feast in heaven.  Prepare your heart! Keep LOOKING UP! The good wine is yet to come!

“…You have kept the good wine until now!”  John 2:10 (NKJV)

…all the people shall keep the WATCH of the Lord. 2 Chronicles 23:6 (NKJV)

Then Abraham lifted his eyes and looked… Genesis 22:13 (NKJV)

And Isaac… lifted his eyes and looked… Genesis 24:63 (NKJV)

For then you will have your delight in the Almighty,
And lift up your face to God. Job 22:26 (NKJV)

Therefore I will LOOK to the Lord;
I will wait for the God of my salvation;
My God will hear me. Micah 7:7 (NKJV)

Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion!
Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem!
Behold, your King is coming to you… Zechariah 9:9 (NKJV)

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982

Just Do It for Jesus!

    His mother said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.”   John 2:5 (NKJV)

For many years, a famous brand of athletic gear has had the slogan, “Just Do It!” encouraging the athletes who wear their products to get out and do their sports.  Today I also want to encourage you, if God is calling you to a task, just do it for Jesus, and the Lord will be with you.  Let me tell you my story…

…Be of good courage, and do it.”  Ezra 10:4 (NKJV)

For months I’d been disturbed about the harm from the vaccine craze in our country and world.  I prayed, I wrote blog articles, I wrote to my newspaper, I emailed friends… but I couldn’t see that I was making a dent in the problem.  Then one day, the Holy Spirit put the idea in my head to visit our county health nurse and ask her to quit giving the shots.  I had to ponder this for awhile.  I shared the idea with Shannon, one of my prayer partners.  

Is God calling you to a task? Shannon said that to know if the calling is from God, there should be two or three witnesses telling me to do it (Deut. 19:15, Matt. 18:16, John 8:17-18).  If I was told in two or three ways to go see the county health nurse, it must be from the Lord. For example, the Holy Spirit tells you to do something, you read it in God’s Word, and then a friend tells you or you read it in another place in God’s Word.  Shannon also said I can ask, “Would my flesh think of doing this and want to do it?” “No!” “Is this something the enemy wants me to do?” “No!” “Would Jesus want me to do this?” “Yes!”  “Is this something that will please the Lord?” “Yes!”

…whatever God has said to you, do it. Genesis 31:16 (NKJV)

So after reading several Bible verses that encouraged me, I finally set the date to go visit the nurse. The day before my mission I spent in fasting and prayer. The Lord gave me more verses to encourage me, like 2 Chronicles 18:13…As the Lord lives, whatever my God says, that I will speak. And John 6:20…But He said to them, ‘It is I, do not be afraid.’ And John 6:38…For I have come not to do my own will, but the will of Him who sent me. The day arrived and it was snowing hard.  I decided to wait until afternoon, that meant fasting another half day.  Finally, I went in to her office and she was out for the day!  I came home and finally ate, knowing I would still have to go back the next day. 

Strengthened by that meal and more of God’s Word, I returned the following day. Jesus gave me more verses to sustain me: 2 Chronicles 19:9…Thus you shall act in fear of the Lord, faithfully and with a loyal heart. And 2 Chronicles 19:11… Behave courageously, and the Lord will be with the good. And 2 Chronicles 20:17…position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, who is with you…do not fear or be dismayed. And Zechariah 4:6...not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit says the Lord of hosts.  As I drove there, I prayed more Scripture, “Fear not for I am with you, be not dismayed for I am your God, I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my victorious right hand… May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in Thy sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer…” (Isaiah 41:10, Psalm 19:14). 

When I arrived, someone was in the nurse’s office receiving a shot. Another person was standing in the hallway awaiting her turn.  As I waited for an opening, I prayed.  Finally, just before three o’clock, I slipped into her office and asked if she had a minute.  She looked at her calendar and at the clock and said that was about all she had before the next patient.  So with just two minutes allowed, I jumped right into my mission.  I said, “God sent me to pray for you.”  I thanked her for all the times she helped my boys to go on mission trips by researching the necessary vaccines for those countries. I said, but I’ve heard some bad things about this current covid vaccine, and I asked her to quit giving it, especially to babies and children.  She replied that you have to check your sources and that if parents want to give it to their kids, they can do that.  Knowing that my time was almost over, I offered to pray.  I thanked Jesus for her hard work during these trying times the past two years, I asked the Holy Spirit to stir in her heart if she heard anything questionable about the vaccines, and I prayed God’s blessings upon her family.  Then it was the next person’s turn.  I drove home wondering if I had done any good, yet thankful I had been obedient to God’s calling.

The next day I went to see a friend I’d been wanting to visit for a long time. She told me she and her husband had been vaccinated. My heart broke.  The following day I had a really hard day.  Always, like Elijah after his Mt. Caramel victory, I break down at the threats of Jezebel.  My prayer friend Shannon explained to me later that when we are in battle mode, the dragon cannot get us. But after the battle, we let down our guard and the dragon hits us with his tail. That’s just how it was!  But on the evening of that hard day, only wanting to stay home, but being urged by my husband, we went out to attend a Christmas concert.  There, a neighbor came up to me and said, “I hear you’re praying for the county health nurse. That’s great! We all should be praying.”  Thank you, dearest Jesus, for confirming my call.  And now we keep praying for her and for others like her across this nation to just stop the shot.  For if they stop it, we won’t have it anymore. All glory to God!

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Is God calling you to a task?  Has He told you in two or three ways? (Yes!) Does this calling line up with Scripture? (Yes!) Would my flesh think of doing this and want to do it? (No!) Is this something the enemy would want me to do? (No!) Would Jesus want me to do this? (Yes!)  Is this something that will please the Lord? (Yes!) Pray hard, ask others to pray, and then, just do it for Jesus! And may the Lord be with you this new year, dear sister!

But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.  James 1:22 (NKJV)

Now therefore, let the fear of the Lord be upon you; take care and do it2 Chronicles 19:7 (NKJV)

…and see that you do it quickly. 2 Chronicles 24:5 (NKJV)

If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them. John 13:17 (NKJV)

do it according to the will of your God. Ezra 7:18 (NKJV)

…and if I perish, I perish! Ester 4:16 (NKJV)

 It is also written in your law that the testimony of two men is true. I am One who bears witness of Myself, and the Father who sent Me bears witness of Me.”  John 8:17-18 (NKJV)

…by the mouth of two or three witnesses the matter shall be established. Deuteronomy 19:15 (NKJV)

Thank you for stopping by My TEA CUPP Prayers, if you are motivated by today’s devotion, you might also like to read: Esther’s Great Calling and  Steadfast and Stout-hearted.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982

Remember the Cross

Today I rerun another favorite Christmas devotion for you from December 2017.  Merry Christmas, dear TEA CUPP ladies!

For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 1 Corinthians 1:18 (NKJV)

In his autobiography, Just As I Am, Billy Graham tells the story of a crusade at the Dallas Cotton Bowl in 1953.  After a night of preaching, his friend John Bolton took a walk with Billy and commented, “Billy, you didn’t speak about the Cross.”

Rev. Graham’s friend went on to say, “How can anyone be converted without having at least one single view of the Cross where the Lord died for us?  You must preach about the Cross, Billy. You must preach about the blood that was shed for us there.  There is no other power than when we talk or preach about the Cross.” (Graham, 1997)

And so, as we celebrate Christmas, I exhort you to remember the Cross!  When you look at your tree, decorated with tinsel and lights, remember the tree that held our Savior Jesus, as He gave His precious life for us.

And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Philippians 2:8 (NKJV)

As you give presents to family and friends, remember the Greatest Gift ever given, when God gave His only Son to us:

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16 (NKJV)

As you toss out the wrapping paper and scrub the holiday dishes, remember how Jesus shed His blood for us on the Cross of Calvary, washing away the sins of all who believe in Him.

Having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. Colossians 2:14 (NKJV)

And as you look upon the lights of Christmas, ooh-ing and awwh-ing at the displays in your town, remember to look to Jesus, the Light of the world, the author and finisher of our faith.

Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” John 8:12 (NKJV)

Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:2 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: Read Luke 2 and Luke 23. Remember today the Baby who came in a manger, God in the flesh,  born to a virgin, to save the whole world.  Remember that He didn’t stay in the manger.  He grew to be a Man, fully perfect, without blemish, the only perfect sacrifice for our sins.  And so He gave His life for ours on the Cross. When you look at the Cradle, remember the Cross of Christ this Christmas, my friend.

Who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed.1 Peter 2:24 (NKJV)

An uncommon Christmas carol…

In the cross of Christ I glory,

Towering o’er the wrecks of time;

All the light of sacred story

Gathers round its head sublime.

(John Bowring, 1825)

Graham, B. (1997). Just As I Am. San Francisco: Harper Collins/Zondervan (p.243)

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.

Christmas Gifts!

…but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

Hello, ladies! I know many of you are still looking for that perfect gift for a friend or family member or sister in Christ. If you’re seeking a gift with eternal significance that encourages ladies to read God’s Word, I have 3 My TEA CUPP ideas for you!

 

Good Morning, Jesus, Prayer Journal ($20 suggested gift)

This journal is designed to be a companion to my books, My TEA CUPP Prayers and Mom’s TEA CUPP Prayers.  In these devotional books, I invite you to sit down each morning with your Bible, a cup of tea, and Jesus.  As you drink from His Word and sip from your favorite morning mug, you will draw near to your Savior and be filled with God’s blessings.  You underline your favorite verses and use those verses as conversation starters as you pour your heart out to God in prayer.  I pray you will be in God’s Word each day, reading your Bible and blessed by this journal as a way to get you started.  

My TEA CUPP Prayers ($15 suggested gift)

YOU are invited to TEA with Jesus TODAY!!!  “Come to Me,” Jesus calls in Matthew 11:28.  Please accept!  Allow God to draw you into a daily TEA time with Jesus through this 77-day devotional. My TEA CUPP Prayers is an invitation to women everywhere to sit down daily with Jesus for a cup of tea.  The TEA CUPP acronym provides the parts of prayers, as we use the BIBLE to talk with our Lord.  Here new Christians discover a way to draw nearer to Jesus and old Christians taste a fresh flavor for their prayers. Women will dig deeper into God’s Word, come closer to Jesus by meeting with Him each day, and unleash the power of the Holy Spirit through their prayers.

 

Mom’s TEA CUPP Prayers ($16 suggested gift)

What will you find when you open the pages of Mom’s TEA CUPP Prayers?  You will discover a 77-day devotional that takes moms gracefully into a daily TEA time with Jesus.  Every Sunday you will meet a new Bible mom who will introduce you to another part of prayer.  And during the week you will again be encouraged to read your Bible and pray for your family, as I share stories God has given me, including our miracle baby. The book also has a week of Christmas devotions which I hope will bless your Christmas season this year and in years to come.  They might be just the thing to read to your small group or family this Advent season. Mom’s TEA CUPP Prayers is an invitation to moms everywhere to sit down each day with Jesus, a Bible, and your favorite morning mug.

You can order one item or bundle them together to make an extra special gift. Each one comes with a My TEA CUPP Prayers bookmark, and to those who request it, you can even receive a M’Cheyne Bible Reading Plan. Because I hope to get these into the hands of many ladies, I’m offering free shipping for the rest of December.

We aren’t set up for credit cards, so if you could please snail-mail a check to My TEA CUPP Prayers, PO Box 1003, Big Timber, MT 59011, that will work well. You can also text me here. Please include a short note with your mailing address, phone number in case I have questions, and what items you would like sent.

Thank you for considering these My TEA CUPP items for your Christmas gift-giving. Here are some Christmas devotions to bless your day until your books arrive. He Comes with Presents is a good one :-). Thank you for stopping by My TEA CUPP Prayers! Merry Christmas! Jesus is coming soon!!!

If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! Matthew 7:11 (NKJV)

But earnestly desire the best gifts. And yet I show you a more excellent way. 1 Corinthians 12:31 (NKJV)

Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift! 2 Corinthians 9:15 (NKJV)

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. James 1:17 (NKJV)

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 

Where is He?

Blessed Advent to you, dear TEA ladies. Today I share a post from three years ago, which seems so appropriate for the present time.  This devotion will also be included in my new book, More TEA CUPP Prayers, coming Spring 2022, God-willing. Thank you for your prayers!

…“Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him.” Matthew 2:2 (NKJV)

“Where is He who has been born King of the Jews?” the wise men queried. “Where is He?”  The wise men weren’t call wise for nothing!  They asked the very question we should all ask ourselves every day, “Where is He who was born King of the Jews?”  (Matthew 2:2). Have we searched for Him with all our hearts? Have we followed His star to the ends of the earth to find Him? Have we worshiped the One who is worthy of all glory, honor, and praise? Or, have we tried to snuff Him out like the evil King Herod?

Where is Jesus in our lives?  Is He lost under the wrapping paper and tinsel?  Stuffed behind the Christmas tree?  Buried under smart phones and social media and busyness?  Hidden behind a flurry of holiday activities, and activities all year long, for that matter? Is Jesus lost beneath some long-held bitterness that we won’t let go?

Perhaps you yourself are crying out to God this very moment because a loved one has died or there is great turmoil in your life.  You are asking, “Where is He who is born King of the Jews?” (Matthew 2:2).  And, “My God, my God, why have You forsaken me?” (Psalm 22:1). And, “Jesus, if you had been here, my loved one would not have died.” (John 11:21)

Dear Friend, I assure you, God is here.  The King of the Jews is with you.  Jesus is weeping with you (John 11:25). He wants to hold you in His everlasting arms (Deuteronomy 33:27) and to dry all your tears (Revelations 7:17) and comfort you.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. Psalm 23:4 (NKJV)

People have been searching for Jesus since before He was born to this day. Remember when Jesus was twelve years old and His parents frantically searched for Him in Jerusalem, relieved to find Jesus after three days at the Temple teaching? (Luke 2:41-50). And after He died, how three days later, Mary Magdalene cried to the Man she supposed to be the gardener“Sir, if You have carried Him away, tell me where You have laid Him, and I will take Him away” (John 20:15)Even now, for those who still seek Him, there is always Someone to point the way, just as the angel answered Mary Magdalene…

He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. Matthew 28:6 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: Read the Christmas story in Matthew 1:18-2:12. Answer this question in your life today, “Where is He who was born King of the Jews?” Is He hiding behind past hurts and busyness? Bring Jesus to the front.  Seek Him with all your heart.  Read your Bible each day and talk to Him in prayer.  Let Him be your peace and comfort. Worship Him with all your heart. Be one of the wise ladies!

And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13 (NKJV)

Seek the Lord while He may be found,
Call upon Him while He is near. Isaiah 55:6 (NKJV)

Blessed are those who keep His testimonies,
Who seek Him with the whole heart! 
Psalm 119:2 (NKJV)

With my whole heart I have sought You;
Oh, let me not wander from Your commandments!  Psalm 119:10 (NKJV)

Wise men and ladies still seek Him!

Thank you for stopping by My TEA CUPP Prayers.  If you enjoyed today’s devotion, please check out some of my other Christmas writingsMy Christmas Revelation Tea, and My Heart Inn.

This devotion first ran on my website on December 23, 2018…before Covid, before mandates, before vaccines… may it bless you today, December 10, 2021.