Since Shabbat, the Jewish Sabbath, begins Friday at sundown and ends 24 hours later, I've decided to post a little piece I wrote for Women's Retreats that begin on Ere' of Shabbat, Friday night. Both the writing and sharing of this piece is special to me because on every Ere' of Shabbat Jewish women light the Shabbat candles, thereby ushering in this weekly Feast of the Lord mention in Leviticus where all such observances are listed.
In our own country, we honor our history through national observance just as we Jews do. Until lately both Americans and Jews prayed as God instructed us to do in His Word. Furthermore, being vested in His word daily, Gods principals guided our leaders and us. Our republic was founded through the extension of these principals. Our leaders consecrated themselves and this fledgling nation to the Lord. During this time, though weekly observances differed, we lived in a country that turned aside from insisting all act in a singular way, and affirmed the individual’s right to be just that. We did not insist that the greater good required conformation to one way. This ability to recognize and place individual and faith needs above the state yet find a way for all to live in harmony and safety made this nation and its people a beacon of freedom.
Where for the Jew weekly observances reminded them of Gods provision, throughout the world Christians remembered that just as God selected this tiny group, He grafted them into His vine, the root of Jessie, from which Yeshua (Christ) was born in the fullness of time. Here, as nowhere else in the world, individuals from both groups were able to discover and own their unique blessings, while affirming to their heart that God is and will always be faithful.
In this world where we see the demise of marriages due to the unfaithfulness of one or both spouses, friendships that aren’t because they were predicated upon need rather than mutual accord, the waxing of individual’s to those pledges they made, and the undermining of God’s Word and all that made our nation both great and safe, I am reminded of the commitment made by our founding fathers when they penned and signed our founding documents knowing they might dye by doing so. They were willing to forfeit all to stand for what they believed in. Though each man knew that he might be signing his death warrant, each committed to the others because they believed that though they died for the right to be free from tyranny, God—not a country or a person- not science, or anything we could make—was and always will be the eternal absolute! In Him who is unseen, we see neither self-promotion nor an egocentric mindset. So if you, like me, need to remember that God saved, called, and gifted all believers to do everything He will ever ask of us, I ask you to think of yourself, and your life as an offering. Make sure that what you bring to the alter it is acceptable to Him, and thank Him for He who began a good work in each of us will continue it until He calls us home!
Each of us has a special spark inside,
That needs to be lit and share with pride.
Not pride in who we are or what we do,
But pride in our Messiah who made our life new.
For just as these candles were shaped by a mold,
God has designed us in a way that is wonderful to behold.
It may take a lifetime to learn to yield our will,
So that God can make us a vessel worthy to fill,
With the pure light of His radiance and grace,
As evidenced by Yeshua who chose to take our place.
He came into this world,
The true light for all to see,
He yielded His life upon that fateful tree.
So as we put the match to the candles wick,
Let us each recall,
That we are but a small reflection of the greatest light of all!