Enter the Promised Land

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.  John 14:2 (NKJV)

Growing up in Iowa, I was quite proud of the quote from the famous baseball movie Field of Dreams, “Is this heaven? No, this is Iowa.”  Now I live in Montana, which I find even more beautiful with its majestic mountains and wide open spaces.  Yet I know even this is not heaven. For in the true heaven there awaits me my Savior Jesus and a Promised Land more wonderful than I could ever imagine. It is a good land which the Lord our God is giving us (Deut. 1:25).

So many of us know the Old Testament account of Moses leading God’s people out of Egypt and parting the Red Sea. But instead of heading straight to the Promised Land, they wandered around in the wilderness for 40 years because of their disobedience and unbelief.  God’s pillar of cloud led them by day and fire led them by night until all the older generation died. 

And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who did not obey? So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief. Hebrews 3:18-19 (NKJV)

So I swore in My wrath,
‘They shall not enter My rest.’  Psalm 95:11

Why couldn’t the older generation enter the Promised Land?  Because they didn’t believe!  In Numbers 13 we read how Moses sent a scouting party to check out the Promised Land.  Two men, Joshua and Caleb, said it was perfect and they should go. Ten men said there were awful giants and the land could not be captured.  The Israelites believed the ten men instead of believing and trusting God.  So they couldn’t enter the Promised Land. Even Moses was not allowed to enter the Promised Land, because he did not hallow the Lord when he struck a rock to get water at Kadesh (Numbers 20:12, 27:12-14, Deut.1:36-38, 3:25, 4:22).  

Only Joshua and Caleb and all the younger generation were allowed to enter the Promised Land.  Joshua was the anointed leader and Caleb was given special lands.  WE must also BELIEVE to enter the Promised Land of heaven.  Don’t side with the ten men who don’t trust God. Go with Jesus and the Holy Spirit who tell us He is preparing a place for us in heaven. Be like Caleb who said, “Let us go up at once and take possession, for we are well able to overcome it”  (Number 14:8). Believe!

…Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household. Acts 16:31 (NKJV)

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)

God’s Word is full of promises about our Promised Land. Let’s look at a few of these heavenly promises…

…an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you.  1 Peter 1:4 (NKJV)

Your eyes will see the King in His beauty;
They will see the land that is very far off.  Isaiah 33:17 (NKJV)

For so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 2 Peter 1:11 (NKJV)

The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb,
The leopard shall lie down with the young goat,
The calf and the young lion and the fatling together;
And a little child shall lead them.  Isaiah 11:6 (NKJV)

The streets of the city
Shall be full of boys and girls
Playing in its streets. Zechariah 8:5 (NKJV)

a throne set in heaven, and One sat on the throne. And He who sat there was like a jasper and a sardius stone in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, in appearance like an emerald. Revelation 4:2-3 (NKJV)

And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away. Revelation 21:4 (NKJV)

 But there shall by no means enter it anything that defiles, or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.  Revelation 21:27 (NKJV)

Dear One, there remains a rest for the people of God, for YOU!  For as yet you have not come to the rest and the inheritance which the Lord your God is giving you. How can we be certain to enter this rest in the Promised Land?  By holding fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end, by exhorting one another daily while it is called Today lest any of us be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin, by holding steadfast to the end, by remembering the Sabbath Day of rest now, by being diligent to enter our rest, by hiding God’s Word in our hearts, by coming boldly to the throne of grace, that we may find mercy and grace to help in time of need. but most of all, believe on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved.  (Deuteronomy 12:9, Hebrews 3-4, Acts 16:31). 

Three years ago my Daddy went to heaven. Three miscarried babies and two grandbabies are in heaven.  I can’t wait to see Jesus and all my loved ones and those streets of gold and no more tears or hurt or sin or sadness or pain or cancer or COVID19 or bad politics. Let us wait for the city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God (Hebrews 11:10) where Jesus reigns forever and ever!!!

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Read Numbers 13,  Hebrews 4 and Revelation 4 for a picture of the Promised Land and heaven. Dear One, I want you to be in heaven someday with Jesus and all God’s children.  Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ TODAY and you will be saved.  Claim all the promises of heaven, looking forward to the day when Jesus calls us home.

Thank you for stopping by My TEA CUPP Prayers.  If you enjoyed today’s devotion, you might also like to read My Dear Loved One and  Remember the Sabbath and The Only Antidote. 

I will abide in Your tabernacle forever;
I will trust in the shelter of Your wings. Psalm 61:4

He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. John 3:18 (NKJV)

You will show me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Psalm 16:11 (NKJV)

Blessed is the man You choose,
And cause to approach You,
That he may dwell in Your courts.
We shall be satisfied with the goodness of Your house,
Of Your holy temple.  Psalm 65:4 (NKJV)

Nevertheless I am continually with You; You hold me by my right hand. You will guide me with Your counsel, And afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You. My flesh and my heart fail; But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. Psalm 73:23-26 (NKJV)

Therefore be patient, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, waiting patiently for it until it receives the early and latter rain. You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand. James 5:7-8 (NKJV)

And the ransomed of the Lord shall return,
And come to Zion with singing,
With everlasting joy on their heads.
They shall obtain joy and gladness,
And sorrow and sighing shall flee away.Isaiah 35:10 (NKJV)

 

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

 

 

Heal Me, O Lord

…“Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick.” John 11:3 (NKJV)

…“Do you want to be made well?”  John 5:6 (NKJV)

“Yes, Lord Jesus, I want to be made well!” I cried out as I read John 5:6. Then I prayed for the thousandth time, “Heal me, O Lord, and I will be healed, save me and I will be saved, for You are my praise” (Jeremiah 17:14).  And He replied, yet again, Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord! (Psalm 27:14).

When our granddaughter got cancer, over two years ago, I immediately cried out to the Lord to heal her, calling our church prayer chain, asking friends to pray, and making refrigerator magnets to remind them.  But even with all those prayers for her going up to the throne room of God, I must have carried the burden within me as my health started failing…first my back, then my gut, then my liver, then chronic pain… then, too many things to name.  

I was a mystery to doctors who couldn’t seem to hit on the exact diagnosis and treatment.  I tried every remedy, prayed every prayer, believed with all my heart for Jesus’ healing, was anointed with oil and prayed over by dear friends, and spent all my livelihood on physicians yet was healed by none (Luke 8:43).  Some doctors were very kind, yet others were awful.  I was blessed to join a group for those in chronic pain called Take Courage Coaching. It felt like the Lord was making “the captain of my salvation perfect through sufferings” (Hebrews 2:10), while saying, “Wait.”  

“And now, Lord, what do I wait for?
My hope is in You.  Psalm 39:7 (NKJV)

Then came the day when I wasn’t allowed to see my grandchildren anymore because of my views on the experimental “vaccine” being used for the coronavirus.  And my heart broke,  yet I esteemed the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt; for I looked to the reward (Hebrews 11:26).  And I continued to cry out for healing for my granddaughter and myself.  

One morning, I was in so much pain as I sat down for my tea time with Jesus.  What an ordeal it was to get settled… Bible, teacup, water bottle, ice pack on my back, heating pad on my tummy, wrapped up in my prayer shawl… and then the restroom called, causing me to unwrap, take off heating pad, say, “be right back, Jesus,”… and then return to get settled again.  Each morning I begin my quiet time by singing or reading an old hymn.  While in so much pain I said to the Lord, “I don’t suppose you have a hymn for someone in pain.”  And, this is the truth, He had me open my hymnal exactly to a hymn entitled, “Does Jesus Care” by Frank E. Graeff (1901).  The first verse sings…

“Does Jesus care when my heart is pained too deeply for mirth and song; As the burdens press and the cares distress, and the way grows weary and long? O yes, He cares; I know He cares, His heart is touched with my grief; When the days are weary, the long nights dreary, I know my Savior cares. He cares.” (Frank E. Graeff,1901)

Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7 (NKJV)

Isn’t that a delight to know that Jesus cares? One of my favorite ways to pray for healing is while reading the Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.  When Jesus heals someone in my reading, I underline the verses and pray those for the people I know who need healing.  There are other healing verses throughout our Bibles that I like to pray, too.  I shared some of these verses when our granddaughter first got cancer and now I repost them with more verses included.  I hope they are a blessing to you, too.  

As our planet is turned upside down by plagues and adverse reactions to the experimental “vaccine,” what our world needs, what our nation needs, what our granddaughter needs, what I need…is a CUPP of Healing TEA.  Today I share with you verses you can pray as you pour out your heart to Yehovah Rapha, the Great Physician, our Healing God for our nation and world, your family and friends.  Prayer and Jesus are the answers to all we need. 

Read all the way to the end for a bonus devotion and the Does Jesus Care hymn.  Enjoy!

T is for Thanksgiving

And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, returned, and with a loud voice glorified God, and fell down on his face at His feet, giving Him thanks. And he was a Samaritan. Luke 17:15-16 (NKJV)

We give thanks to You, O God, we give thanks!
For Your wondrous works declare that Your name is near.  Psalm 75:1 (NKJV)

E is for Exalting

Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed;
Save me, and I shall be saved,
For You are my praise. Jeremiah 17:14 (NKJV)

…For I am the Lord who heals you.  Exodus 15:26 (NKJV)

A is for Admitting

Look on my affliction and my pain,
And forgive all my sins.
Psalm 25:18 (NKJV)

My wounds are foul and festering
Because of my foolishness.  Psalm 38:5 (NKJV)

And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.  John 9:2-3 (NKJV)

Afterward Jesus found him in the temple, and said to him, “See, you have been made well. Sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon you.”  John 5:14 (NKJV)

C is for Calling

Do not be afraid; only believe.  Mark 5:36 (NKJV)

And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease.  Matthew 10:1 (NKJV)

Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.  1 Peter 4:12-13 (NKJV)

U is for Understanding

My heart is severely pained within me,
And the terrors of death have fallen upon me.
Psalm 55:4 (NKJV)

The people who walked in darkness
Have seen a great light;
Those who dwelt in the land of the shadow of death,
Upon them a light has shined.
Isaiah 9:2 (NKJV)

Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people. Matthew 9:35 (NKJV)

Then Jesus answered and said to her, “O woman, great is your faith! Let it be to you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour. Matthew 15:28 (NKJV)

Then great multitudes came to Him, having with them the lame, blind, mute, maimed, and many others; and they laid them down at Jesus’ feet, and He healed them.  Matthew 15:30 (NKJV)

Jesus answered and said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Luke 5:31 (NKJV)

Let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole. Acts 4:10 (NKJV)

P is for Promises

And the Lord will take away from you all sickness… Deuteronomy 7:15 (NKJV)

The Lord will strengthen him on his bed of illness;
You will sustain him on his sickbed.  Psalm 41:3 (NKJV)

But to you who fear My name
The Sun of Righteousness shall arise
With healing in His wings… Malachi 4:2 (NKJV)

…And by His stripes we are healed. Isaiah 53:5 (NKJV)

“For I will restore health to you
And heal you of your wounds,’”says the Lord… Jeremiah 30:17 (NKJV)

And Jesus said to him, “I will come and heal him.”  Matthew 8:7 (NKJV)

…Be of good cheer, daughter; your faith has made you well…   Matthew 9:22 (NKJV)

And as many as touched Him were made well. Mark 6:56 (NKJV)

When the sun was setting, all those who had any that were sick with various diseases brought them to Him; and He laid His hands on every one of them and healed them. Luke 4:40 (NKJV)

And He said to him, “Arise, go your way. Your faith has made you well.” Luke 17:19 (NKJV)

P is for Petitions

Lord, heal me, for my bones are troubled. Psalm 6:2 (NKJV)

Remove Your plague from me…Hear my prayer, O Lord, and give ear to my cry; do not be silent at my tears…  Psalm 39:10-12 (NKJV)

Make me hear joy and gladness,
That the bones You have broken may rejoice. Psalm 51:8 (NKJV)

Give ear to my prayer, O God,
And do not hide Yourself from my supplication.
Attend to me, and hear me;
I am restless in my complaint, and moan noisily. Psalm 55:1-2 (NKJV)

Is there no balm in Gilead,
Is there no physician there?
Why then is there no recovery
For the health of the daughter of my people?
Jeremiah 8:22 (NKJV)

Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed;
Save me, and I shall be saved,
For You are my praise. Jeremiah 17:14 (NKJV)

…Lord, I am not worthy that You should come under my roof. But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed. Matthew 8:8 (NKJV)

And it happened when He was in a certain city, that behold, a man who was full of leprosy saw Jesus; and he fell on his face and implored Him, saying, “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.”  Luke 5:12 (NKJV)

The nobleman said to Him, “Sir, come down before my child dies!” Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your son lives.” So the man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him, and he went his way. John 4:49-50 (NKJV)

Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.  3 John 2 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP:  I’ve been needing this Healing TEA a lot lately. Perhaps you would like a CUPP, too? Pour your favorite morning mug, open your Bible and prayer journal, use these verses to pour your heart out to Jesus in prayer. Pick a favorite verse to write in your prayer journal and use as a conversation starter today.  The name for our Healing God is Yehovah Rapha, you might try praying, “Dear Yehovah Rapha, my Healing God, my Savior Jesus, I call on You today…”

p.s. You can use these verses to write in a get-well card to a friend, too!  

A devotion I like to hear each week is called “Give Him 15” with Dutch Sheets.  A few weeks ago Pastor Dutch encouraged us all to pray again for healing, even if we have prayed before without results, pray again, pray several times each day, keep praying!  You might enjoy Pastor Dutch’s devotions, too. You can read it, or scroll to the end of his post and he will read it to you!

…Peace, peace to him who is far off and to him who is near,”
Says the Lord,
“And I will heal him.” Isaiah 57:19 (NKJV)

Then your light shall break forth like the morning,
Your healing shall spring forth speedily,
And your righteousness shall go before you;
The glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard. Isaiah 58:8 (NKJV)

Do not be afraid; only believe.  Mark 5:36 (NKJV)

…I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; surely I will heal you… 2 Kings 20:5 (NKJV)

Does Jesus Care with Glenda Rae & The Essentials AND HOPE CHANNEL SOUTH PHILIPPINES STUDIO

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

 

The Ladies at the Cross

And a great multitude of the people followed Him, and women who also mourned and lamented Him. Luke 23:27 (NKJV)

This week, people from around the world remember the death and resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Two of the most Holy celebrations come together in one, as the Jewish people celebrate the Feast of Passover and Unleavened Bread, recalling when our Yehovah God set them free from Egypt.  And Christians remember the death of the Passover Lamb, Yeshua Messiah, who died on the cross for all the world.  In my previous devotion, I encouraged you to get together with other ladies to pray for our world.  Will you consider there was also such a ladies’ gathering around the cross?  It was a group of broken-hearted ladies, just like you and me. Let’s meet these dear ladies:

   And many women who followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering to Him, were there looking on from afar, among whom were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee’s sons.  Matthew 27:55-56 (NKJV)

Mary Magdalene

And certain women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities—Mary called Magdalene, out of whom had come seven demons.  Luke 8:2

Mary Magdalene was at the cross. Mary Magdalene was one of the devoted ladies who followed Jesus during His earthly ministry.  She had great love for Jesus since He had cast out the seven demons from her.  Mary followed Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus when they laid Jesus in the tomb and rolled the stone to cover the entrance. Then she went home for the Sabbath.  But early Sunday morning, she came again to the tomb, hoping to anoint Jesus’ body with oil, only to find the stone rolled away and the tomb empty.  Mary cried out to the “gardener,” “Where have you put Him?”  And the “gardener” replied, “Mary.”  Then she knew that Jesus is alive and ran to tell the disciples!  Mary Magdalene was the first witness of our Risen Lord! (Mark 16:9).

Mary the mother of James the Less and Joses

There were also women looking on from afar, among whom were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James the Less and of Joses, and Salome.  Mark 15:40 (NKJV)

Mary, the mother of the disciple Little James, was also known as “The Other Mary” and “Wife of Clopas.” After witnessing Jesus’ crucifixion, she was found again at the tomb with Mary Magdalene where Joseph of Aramathea and Nicodemus buried Jesus’ body (Matthew 27:61, Mark 15:47).  These devoted ladies came again on the first day of the week to visit the tomb and anoint Jesus’ body (Matthew 28:1), only to find the stone rolled away and the tomb was empty! Jesus is alive! 

Salome, the wife of Zebedee, and mother of James and John

Now when the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, that they might come and anoint Him.  Mark 16:1 (NKJV)

Salome, mother of James and John, also known as Jesus’ aunt, was at the cross.  When I think of Salome, the story that comes to mind is when she brought James and John to Jesus and asked that they sit on His right and left sides in His Kingdom (Matthew 20:21).  Imagine how James and John felt when the other disciples were upset about this request.  Yet Salome asked because she believed in Jesus and His Kingdom.  And someday she will receive her petition, for her sons James and John will be sitting on two of the twenty-four thrones around God the Father and Jesus the Son, where we all will be worshipping the Lord (Revelation 4:4,10).  

Mary, the mother of Jesus

Now there stood by the cross of Jesus His mother, and His mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. John 19:25 (NKJV)

Of all the Mary(s) at the cross, perhaps this one is most memorable, Mary, the mother of Jesus.  Oh, what a journey this dear lady had, from trusting God with His divine conception and birth, to fleeing to Egypt, to searching for 12-year-old Jesus in Jerusalem, to bringing up a perfect Son in an imperfect world, to seeing His miracles and knowing He was fulfilling God’s plan, and yet, now, to witnessing His willing sacrifice on the cross, dying for the sins of all the world (John 3:16-17).  Oh, what a life this blessed Mary lived, being mother of our Savior.  

When Jesus therefore saw His mother, and the disciple whom He loved standing by, He said to His mother, “Woman, behold your son!” Then He said to the disciple, “Behold your mother!” And from that hour that disciple took her to his own home.  John 19:26-27(NKJV)

Other Women

But all His acquaintances, and the women who followed Him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things. Luke 23:49 (NKJV)

And there were many other women, too. Perhaps Joanna was there and Susanna (Luke 8:3, 24:10) .  They ministered to Him in Galilee and came up with Him to Jerusalem, observing the tomb and how His body was laid (Luke 23:55, Mark 15:41).  Other women were there, too, just like YOU and me. 

“I have loved you,” says the Lord Malachi 1:2 (NKJV)

Yes, YOU were at the cross! As Jesus hung on the cross, shedding His blood for the sins of all humankind, He thought of YOU! He planned to die on the cross for YOU since before time began (Ephesians 1:4-5, 2 Timothy 1:9, Titus 1:2). With eyes that could look down the halls of eternity, He saw YOU and He died for YOU! He saw your broken heart, He saw your sick body, He saw your hurting soul, He saw your fractured family and your dashed dreams, and He bore it all on the cross. He took the nails for your sins. He was bruised for your iniquities. And by His stripes YOU are healed. He poured out His life and blood and water for YOU (John 19:34), because He loves YOU and wants to be your Savior. But He didn’t stay dead, on the third day, Jesus rose again, conquering sin, death, and the devil forever, giving all who believe the promise of eternal life with Him.

…Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures… 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: Dear One, say as the centurions guarding the cross, “Truly this was the Son of God!” (Matthew 27:54). Find these Bible verses and read them again today. Choose one of the Gospel crucifixions to read each day this coming week: Matthew 27-28, Mark 15-16, Luke 23-24, John 19-20. Imagine standing with all these women before the cross. When Jesus said, “It is finished,” He looked right at YOU with love in His eyes, waiting for you to accept His sacrificial death. Say as the thief did beside Jesus on the cross, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom” (Luke 23:42)

Thank you for stopping by My Tea Cupp Prayers! If you enjoyed today’s devotion, you might also like to read The Blessed Easter Tree and Every Knee Shall Bow and The Torn Curtain. I pray you and your family have a blessed Passover and Resurrection Sunday this weekend. HalleluYAH! Christ is Risen indeed!

Were You There (Traditional Spiritual)
Jesus, Keep Me Near the Cross (Fanny J. Crosby, 1869)

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. 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. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.  John 3:14-17 (NKJV)❤️

Surely He has borne our griefs
And carried our sorrows;
Yet we esteemed Him stricken,
Smitten by God, and afflicted.
But He was wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes we are healed.
Isaiah 53:4-5 (NKJV)

And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh,
Justified in the Spirit,
Seen by angels,
Preached among the Gentiles,
Believed on in the world,
Received up in glory.
1 Timothy 3:16 (NKJV)

To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. Revelation 1:5-6 (NKJV)

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

Bearing Burdens

Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. Galatians 6:2 (NKJV)

I am not able to bear all these people alone, because the burden is too heavy for me. Numbers 11:14 (NKJV)

Do you have the weight of the world on your shoulders today?  The war in Ukraine and Russia is upon the hearts of many.  Coming food shortages are also a concern.  And there are the deaths of loved ones due to vaccines and other ailments.  It really is too much to carry, isn’t it? My friend, today let us lighten your load.  

 How can I alone bear your problems and your burdens and your complaints?  Deuteronomy 1:12 (NKJV)

Let’s begin by looking in Exodus 28 for help. I know that may seem a funny place to begin. Sometimes the Old Testament books bog us down with genealogies and rules, and we aren’t sure what’s in it for us. But with every year of reading my Bible, God shows me more neat things in the Old Testament and I love it as much as the New Testament. 

And you shall put the two stones on the shoulders of the ephod as memorial stones for the sons of Israel. So Aaron shall bear their names before the Lord on his two shoulders as a memorial. Exodus 28:12 (NKJV)

In this second book of the Bible, Moses shares the plans God showed him on the mountain for the children of Israel.  Exodus 28 contains the guidelines for outfitting the priests.  Moses’ brother Aaron and Aaron’s sons were to be the priests.   Their garments were to be holy for glory and for beauty, made by gifted artisans.  Surely today we have never seen such craftsmanship of gold, blue, purple, and scarlet thread.  On Aaron’s shoulders he was to wear two stones set in gold, each with the names of six of the tribes of Israel, listed in order of birth.  On Aaron’s breastplate he wore an even more beautiful arrangement of twelve precious jewels, one for each of the tribes of Israel.  Aaron wore this over his heart, bearing the judgment of the children of Israel.  

So Aaron shall bear the names of the sons of Israel on the breastplate of judgment over his heart, when he goes into the holy place, as a memorial before the Lord continually.  Exodus 28:29 (NKJV)

Aaron was to wear this continually, bearing up the tribes of Israel to the Lord always.   In the same way, we are called to pray without ceasing, continually bearing up family, friends, loved ones, enemies, the sick, the hurting, leaders and nations… carrying them to Jesus without rest.  No wonder you feel like you have the world is on your shoulders!  But here’s the good news: You don’t have to carry it alone!  

Pray without ceasing. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 (NKJV)

As Christians we are all called to carry one another’s burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ (Galatians 6:2).  If your load is too heavy, how about getting together with some praying friends for an hour or two of prayer each week.  You can pray for your families and the country and everything else on your hearts.  Suddenly your load has become much lighter!

Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.  1 Peter 5:7 (NKJV)

Jesus also helps us carry the heavy load.  As we bring our prayers to the Father, He lifts them from us and gives us His light load instead.  Instead of sleepless nights, He gives us rest. Instead of anxiety, He gives us peace.  Instead of regrets, He gives us forgiveness. Instead of thirst, He gives us His Living Water.  Instead of hunger, He gives us Bread from heaven. Instead of pain, He gives us healing. Instead of tears, He gives us comfort. Instead of sorrow, He gives us joy. Instead of the heavy load, we carry only what He allows. He promises us this in His Word…

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”  Matthew 11:28-20 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Read about Aaron’s garments in Exodus 28 today.  Draw a breastplate in your prayer journal with spaces for 12 “jewels.”  Write the names of 12 family members or friends or concerns that you want to bear up to the Lord Jesus.  How about calling a few friends to pray with you each week, too. Help each other carry your crosses daily.  Keep holding on, Jesus is coming soon!  

I removed his shoulder from the burden;
His hands were freed from the baskets.  Psalm 81:6 (NKJV)

And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. Luke 14:27 (NKJV)

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7 (NKJV)

You have turned for me my mourning into dancing;
You have put off my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness. Psalm 30:11 (NKJV)

Cast your burden on the Lord,
And He shall sustain you;
He shall never permit the righteous to be [moved.  Psalm 55:22 (NKJV)

Here are three lovely versions of Kelly Willard’s 1978 hymn, “I Will Cast All My Cares Upon You.”



It shall come to pass in that day
That his burden will be taken away from your shoulder,
And his yoke from your neck,
And the yoke will be destroyed because of the anointing oil. Isaiah 10:27

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

Wars and Rumors

But when you hear of wars and commotions, do not be terrified; for these things must come to pass first, but the end will not come immediately. Luke 21:9 (NKJV)

And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. Matthew 24:6 (NKJV)

But when you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be troubled; for such things must happen, but the end is not yet. Mark 13:7 (NKJV)

The news reports are coming in about a war in eastern Europe between Russia and Ukraine.  Innocent people are being caught like chess pawns in the middle of a Risk game.  Photos of husbands hugging wives good-bye as they send them to safety grace our newspapers.  Forlorn children ride the train to who-knows-where.  Our hearts ache at these images and we ask the Lord to help these dear ones.  But do we really know the reason for the fighting?  I don’t think so. 

Wisdom is better than weapons of war;
But one sinner destroys much good. Ecclesiastes 9:18

Do you remember how Job and his friends argued for over 30 chapters about why all this evil had come upon Job?  They did not know about the meeting God and satan had in heaven and how God gave satan permission to harm Job, knowing Job would come through the fires of trial as gold.  Recall how Daniel prayed earnestly for the nation of Israel, yet help was delayed in the heavens and the angel Michael had to assist the angel Gabriel so he could come to Daniel (Daniel 10:13). There are battles going on in the heavens of which we know not, yet some of those battles seem to come to earth for us to see.

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.Ephesians 6:12 (NKJV)

So, how can we best discern these recent world events? We can’t trust the news services that two years ago magnified the covid virus beyond what it was, and one year ago falsely promoted the benefits of the “vaccine” to the demise of thousands.  Only God knows the truth.  While we’re waiting for the truth to come out, what can we do?  We can pray!  We can open our hearts to help. We can love our neighbors. We can search God’s Word.  Why did people battle in Bible times? What was the response of God’s children in those battles?  What does Jesus say about wars in the end times?  He says, “Do not be terrified, see that you are not troubled, do not be troubled, fear not!”   

Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
Yes, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10 (NKJV)

…Your word is truthJohn 17:17 (NKJV)

In one Old Testament battle, David and his men were fighting the Philistines when they stopped at the cave of Adullam to rest. While there, David lamented, “Oh, that someone would give me a drink of the water from the well of Bethlehem, which is by the gate.  So the three mighty men broke through the camp of the Philistines, drew water from the well of Bethlehem that was by the gate, and took it and brought it to David. Nevertheless he would not drink it, but poured it out to the Lord (2 Samuel 23:15-16).

This is what we need today — mighty men and women to break through with prayer to the throne room of God, Remember, God loves this world so much that He sent His only Son Jesus to die for our sins.  Hold onto the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. Jesus has already torn the curtain for us (Luke 23:45), so we can enter the Holy of Holies to meet with our Lord. Pour out your heart to Him there and bring back Living Water for the thirsty souls here on earth.  

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Read Psalms 2 and 133.  Keep praying , dear ladies! Remember, Jesus wins the final battle in Revelation.  Truth triumphs over evil.  Our God reigns!

The name of the Lord is a strong tower;
The righteous run to it and are safe.  Proverbs 18:10 (NKJV)

O Jesus, O Father, I break through boldly into Your throne room, for You have torn the curtain for me. I draw Your Living Water from Your Word, the Well. But unlike David, I drink it and want more and more, and pour my heart out to You in prayer.  Now, refreshed, I boldly ask you to break through the chaos in our world today.  There are wars and rumors of wars. There are viruses and rumors of viruses. There are deaths and rumors of deaths.  There are famines and rumors of famines.  Of Jesus, stop the rumors, end the wars, heal the viruses, halt the deaths, pour out Your Living Water on the famine so that we may bear fruit for You again. Show us ways we can help. And most of all, save lost souls for Your Heavenly Kingdom.  Use all this turmoil and tribulation to turn hearts to You. Open eyes, open hearts, open ears.  Pour out Your Holy Spirit upon this land.  Send a revival, the likes of which have never been seen before.  Do this amazing break-through in the Name of Jesus Christ, and the Blood He shed on the cross.  We claim Your victory over death and the devil — for our nation and world, for the children of Israel, for the innocent citizens of Ukraine, Russia, and surrounding countries, for folks suffering health issues around the world.  We claim Your victory in the mighty Name of Yehovah God, the Great I AM, Creator of the Universe. Hallelujah! Amen! 

P.S. Please add to your prayers these next 2 weeks a certain young man on a mission trip to Eswatini, Africa!  

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!   John 1:29 (NKJV)

...but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.  John 1:17 (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)

Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.  John 14:27 (NKJV)

These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world. John 16:33 (NKJV)

And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:7 (NKJV)

And Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which He will accomplish for you today… Exodus 14:13 (NKJV)

You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, who is with you, O Judah and Jerusalem!’ Do not fear or be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them, for the Lord is with you.”  2 Chronicles 20:17 (NKJV)

For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.  2 Corinthians 10:4-5 (NKJV)

He shall judge between the nations,
And rebuke many people;
They shall beat their swords into plowshares,
And their spears into pruning hooks;
Nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
Neither shall they learn war anymore.  Isaiah 2:4 (NKJV)

Why do the nations rage,
And the people plot a vain thing?
The kings of the earth set themselves,
And the rulers take counsel together,
Against the Lord and against His Anointed,saying,
“Let us break Their bonds in pieces
And cast away Their cords from us.”

He who sits in the heavens shall laugh;
The Lord shall hold them in derision.
Then He shall speak to them in His wrath,
And distress them in His deep displeasure:
“Yet I have set My King
On My holy hill of Zion.”  Psalm 2:1-6 (NKJV)

Though an army may encamp against me,
My heart shall not fear;
Though war may rise against me,
In this I will be confident. Psalm 27:3 (NKJV)

Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brethren to dwell together in unity!

It is like the precious oil upon the head,
Running down on the beard,
The beard of Aaron,
Running down on the edge of his garments.
It is like the dew of Hermon,
Descending upon the mountains of Zion;
For there the Lord commanded the blessing—
Life forevermore.  Psalm 133 (NKJV)

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.  Hebrews 4:16 (NKJV)


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

Open Our Eyes, Lord

They said to Him, “Lord, that our eyes may be opened.”  Matthew 20:33 (NKJV)

“Have mercy on us, O Lord, Son of David!” the blind men cried outside the gates of Jericho.  Jesus had just ended a long day of teaching and healing in the city.  Now as he left with His disciples, two more people wanted the Lord’s attention. “Have mercy on us, O Lord, Son of David!” they cried out again.  Jesus turned, asking, “What do you want me to do for you?”  The men replied, “Lord, that our eyes may be opened.” So Jesus had compassion and touched their eyes. And immediately their eyes received sight, and they followed Him (Matthew 20:29-34).

I’m always so amazed when I read the Gospels. Countless times Jesus heals people, especially their eyes.  Such a spiritual significance is apparent with healing the eyes — the dear person can see, yet also a veil has been torn away from their eyes, and they really can SEE and UNDERSTAND.  Doesn’t that sound like something many in this world need today?  Let this be our battle cry today, “Lord, that our eyes may be opened.”  Pray for this kind of eye-opening revival to sweep America and Israel and the world! We can use more eye-opening Bible stories to help us pray…

Do you remember when Sarah sent Hagar away with her son Ishmael the second time? Last week we talked about the first time Hagar left and she met the Lord, naming Him The-God-Who-Sees-Me.  More than a decade later, after the birth of the promised son Isaac to Sarah and Abraham, Sarah sent her maid Hagar away forever.  While in the wilderness, Hagar cried out in thirst and despair.  Then God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water that had been there all along (Genesis 21:14-21).  We can pray, open the eyes of the USA and Israel and the world to Your Living Water, O Lord!  

Then God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water… Genesis 21:19 (NKJV)

Remember the story of Moses and the burning bush?  Moses was tending his flock in Midian, near Mt. Horeb, when suddenly he came upon a bush that was on fire but did not burn up. Just think what would have happened if Moses hadn’t turned to look at the burning bush!  What if he had just passed by and didn’t even notice? What if Moses had gotten a glimpse of the burning bush, but did not pay attention? What if Moses hauled earthen jugs of water to put out the burning bush so he wouldn’t have to look at it?  Thankfully, Moses DID turn aside and looked and the Lord spoke to him out of that burning bush, calling Moses to lead the Israelites out of Egypt.  May we be like Moses, with eyes wide open, keeping our eyes fixed on the Lord, ready always to respond to His call.

So when the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!”  Exodus 3:4 (NKJV)

Mark tells the story of a man being healed from blindness near Bethsaida.  Jesus spat on the man’s eyes and put His hands on him. At first the man exclaimed that he could see people who looked like trees, so Jesus put His hands on the man again.  The second time, the man’s eyes were completely healed, he could clearly see the people! O Jesus, heal America, too!  Open our eyes, not just a little, but all the way, so we can see clearly!

And he looked up and said, “I see men like trees, walking.” Mark 8:24 (NKJV)

Do you remember the Mount of Transfiguration?  Jesus took his three closest friends, Peter, James and John, up a mountain. While they were up there, Jesus was transfigured into glowing white, the glorious Son of God He truly is.  And Moses and Elijah appeared next to Jesus.  The disciples were so weary, they were half asleep (think: no tea or coffee), but finally they were stirred and fully awake. Their eyes were opened and they saw the glory of the Lord!  May our eyes be open to all the miracles the Lord is doing in our world and may we glorify His Name!

But Peter and those with him were heavy with sleep; and when they were fully awake, they saw His glory and the two men who stood with Him.  Luke 9:32 (NKJV)

We decree this for the USA!  Lord Jesus, open the eyes of America that people may see the Truth and come to You in repentance and faith.  Pour out Your Holy Spirit on this land, and may revival spread like wildfire around the world, saving souls for Your kingdom! Amen! 

Today’s TEA CUPP:  One thing I like to do is sing an old hymn “Open my eyes that I may see” before I read my Bible each morning.  I ask the Lord to open my eyes that I might see wondrous things in His Word and Law (Psalm 119:18). We want to keep our eyes open to the truth always.  If we keep praying for God to open eyes across our nation, we will be able to sing as our forefathers did, “My eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord…”

Open my eyes, that I may see
Wondrous things from Your law.  Psalm 119:18 (NKJV)

 The lamp of the body is the eye. Therefore, when your eye is good, your whole body also is full of light.  Luke 11:34 (NKJV)

And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.  John 8:32 (NKJV)

…Your word is truth. John 17:17 (NKJV)

Then He turned to His disciples and said privately, “Blessed are the eyes which see the things you see; for I tell you that many prophets and kings have desired to see what you see, and have not seen it, and to hear what you hear, and have not heard it.”  Luke 10:23-24 (NKJV)

…Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.  1 Corinthians 2:9 (NKJV)

Thank you for stopping by My TEA CUPP Prayers. If you were blessed by today’s devotion, you may also enjoy reading Looking Up at the Big Blue Sky.

Open our eyes, Lord, we want to see Jesus (Robert Cull, 1976)

The Battle Hymn of the Republic (Julie Ward Howe, 1862)

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

 

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 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