The articles in this blog represent my own belief, thoughts and walk with Adonai and the things He teaches me. Do not copy or publish any of my articles without my permission.

Thank you for your understanding,
Bat Melech בת מלך

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Hope against all hopelesness

I haven't been writing in while as some of you kindly pointed out the obvious. Yes, I have been busy. Moving on.

Today I thought I should write something, so for lack of inspiration I thought about something I wrote back in 2015 and set about finding it.
Now if you know me at all you know that I am pretty OCD about most things, but organizing papers is not one of them. I am so bad in fact that back in Romania I had a drawer where I kept all my files and important papers that looked like the secret door to Narnia and I never ever organized it. Whenever my mom came by she kept telling me, 'please let me organize that drawer for you'. She was an accountant and she's a bit OCD herself, but her crazy doesn't match my crazy so with all the terrified voice I could muster I always replied "mom, I've got this, it's fine!" The first thing she did when I left Romania was to go and set everything straight. Now I know that this little story doesn't make me or my mom sound very sane but the moral is I am lousy when it comes to organizing files and papers and I know you could have carried on with your life just fine without knowing that bit of information, but consider it a gift from me. You're welcome.

Needless to say that as I was looking for whatever I was looking for I got sidetracked by this quote I found. It said "It's written, 'seek and ye shall find', but first you have to imagine what you seek. Otherwise you will end up searching for everything everywhere forever." It sounds like a good quote and I am sure that at the time I scribbled it down I thought 'what an amazing concept' but today it just annoyed me. Why, you ask? Because I have quite a vivid imagination. Some would say too much, but I wouldn't listen to those people because they're just jealous. Fine! They're not, but don't listen to them because they don't make me sound too good!

I always knew where I wanted to end up. I have acquired new dreams along the way but a few things stayed the same. They're still not fulfilled but the point is I have always kept them in my sight. I have always tried to make it so that everything I did was in order to bring me closer to those goals. And believe me when I say I tried everything. Short of turning over to the dark side, I have tried everything. I followed 10 steps to get you here and 12 principles to learn whatever and 20 keys to uncover you-name-it.
 I tried to build my faith because some people told me I didn't get my miracle because I didn't believe enough. I got to the point where I started thinking 'HaShem, it must be that I don't know how to believe, because everybody else seems to have this down to an art and my faith brings about nothing. So teach me how to believe!'
 Other people said, 'you know, some things happen only with prayer and fasting'. Now believe me when I say I never do things half way and I spent years of fasting for 40 days, break fast for 2 weeks, go into 21 days, break fast and go into 40 days again. And all I got was an ulcer.
I stayed positive and envisioned everything so much that I could taste it and feel it, and my miracle didn't happen.
 Then others came along and told me, 'things will happen when you stop wanting them'. And it got me thinking that HaShem sounds pretty cruel if that's the case because He keeps you until you lose all hope and give up and then gives it to you? Then why believe at all in the first place? But not to have it said I didn't try that too, I went about employing all my efforts into not hoping for my miracle anymore. That didn't work either.
 At the end of all my struggle I felt like a fool. And I was a fool. I have been angry and then resigned. I could imagine even HaShem asking 'are you done?'
So I stopped and thought and the only logical conclusion was that it is not up to me or anything I do, but it's up to Adonai. And when I'll get my miracle (and get it I will!) I won't be able to come up with theories to impart to desperate people about what I think they should do to get HaShem to give them whatever. I'll know beyond the shadow of a doubt that it was Adonai and Adonai alone that brought about my miracle. Not my positivism or great vision but HaShem.

So my thought for today is: if you see someone in desperate need of a miracle, kindly refrain from giving them your suggestion about what you think they should do in order to get it. What worked for you might not work for them, so just be a friend and let them vent and stop giving them solutions. Pray they find peace and don't lose hope and that's it.
And if it's you who needs a miracle, then my advice to you brave soul is that you stay strong and keep hoping because the One that made the promise is FAITHFUL. Say it until you hope it and hope it until you believe it. And when you can't believe anymore, rest and start over. There is no shortcut to this nor some fancy way of twisting Adonai's arm into doing something for you. Believe me, I tried. Just hope because whoever places his/her trust in Him is not trusting in vain.

Bat Melech בת מלך
 Cristina כריסטינה


Friday, August 25, 2017

To someone who might need it...

"Do you not know that in a race all the runners compete, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it.  Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.  Well, I do not run aimlessly, I do not box as one beating the air;  but I pommel my body and subdue it, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified."  - 1 Corinthians 9:24-27 RSV
Sometimes it feels as if all your efforts to practice everything you know are in vain. Or maybe you're getting hit so hard that the blows leave you dazed and you have no idea what is going on, where you are and what you're supposed to do next. Maybe you just got tired from fighting day after day and you just need everything to stop for a while, so you build a little nest inside yourself where you can lick your wounds in peace and act numb all the while chanting "I just need You Adonai to tell me what to do because nothing makes sense anymore and I have no idea what it is that I'm doing wrong! So tell me what to do! Choose for me so I won't have to!"
 Maybe you question everything starting with the Path, the Truth, your motives, Adonai's motives, the people that have convinced you of certain principles that no matter how hard you try to implement, for some reason, just don't work in your case and you hate yourself and blame everything on your lack of faith, trying to fight back the nagging doubt: 'is anything of this even real? does this even make sense?'

Breathe! It's alright. You're not experiencing some alien infection. It's part of the training. Unless your discomfort is caused by some sin (which you should deal with) it's alright. It might seem like you're choking, but you're not. The One inside you is greater than anything that you might be facing on the outside. So stop looking at the hills waiting for help, your help comes from Adonai (Ps 121) and He's not somewhere out there and you have to catch Him somehow to get Him to do stuff for you, He's inside you. He's not in there like some mystical ghost turning you into some demi-god, He's in you as a Comforter.

"The Lord your God is in your midst, a warrior who gives victory; he will rejoice over you with gladness,  he will renew you in his love; he will exult over you with loud singing." - Zephaniah 3:17 RSV
You can do this! Not because you proclaim yourself a conqueror or even because you believe yourself to be one, but because HaShem is in you and that's a fact and He has never lost a fight! So don't panic. Take a deep breath.
"Shake yourself from the dust, arise, O captive Jerusalem; loose the bonds from your neck, O captive daughter of Zion." - Isaiah 52:2 RSV
Nobody is running to dust you off. Not this time. Because it's time you learn that He is in you, so you have to do it because you can. So shake yourself off.

Are you up? Awesome! Now think. You know what needs to be done. You don't need to be told the next step. You just put one foot in front of the other and stay in what you know is true. You don't need to guess His next plan for you. That would make Him unfair, and He's not. You were not called to understand, you were called to follow Him. And you agreed, remember? Nobody is fooling you. Nobody is deceiving you. He didn't deceive you and now left you to fend for yourself. He has shown you what is expected of you in His Word. He has given you part of Himself to you forever, His Ruach HaKadosh (Holy Spirit) whom dwells within you, now walk!

He didn't bring you this far only to bring you this far. You have to finish the race. None of this is pointless or meaningless. Every step you take is taking you closer to home, just trust His grace will guide you there. Every blow you're dealt teaches you how to duck better and how to fight better. Every test and every success work together to get you Home.

If becoming an Olympic swimmer would be easy, anybody would do it. Endure hard hours of training when everybody else is having fun. Failing test after test and doubting yourself every step of the way. Having to change everything starting with your diet and sleep time and ending with changing even your breathing pattern. You train for years just for one competition. It's the same with being a Christian. You change your whole lifestyle, you train your mind and your character for the time when the true test comes, but you're not alone in this. If you were, you'd never make it. But you've got Him inside you. So it's gonna work. Just trust Him.

This is just a test. Pick yourself up and keep walking. Because the alternative is to go back and you don't want to do that, remember? So if you have to rest, rest and when you're done, keep going. It's worth it, I assure you. Yeshua died to let you run this race. He wouldn't have paid such a price if it wasn't worth it.


Bat Melech בת מלך
 Cristina כריסטינה

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Truth?



A few days ago I witnessed a conversation between two respectable Christians that were attempting a “debate” on the end times in a less than worthy manner. I am not writing this to shame them in any way because they are older and thus to be honored. But it’s not the first time I see this and I thought that even though my opinion is irrelevant, I would still like to address this issue. 

I have seen it many times. Someone is trying to share their opinion on a certain topic and then another one comes along with a different interpretation and then sparks fly. They call each other names “in love” (I do not wish to know what that would sound like without “love”) and the one that has more support from the audience is considered to be right and the other is considered ‘in all kindness’ wrong and behind his back a liar that was attempting to lead others astray with his/her bad understanding of the Scriptures. Inevitably the audience chooses one side or another and those that can’t make up their mind or just plainly get a headache from the whole exchange will just say “why are there so many opinions on this topic? Why can’t we all agree on something?” which sounds very ‘unifying’ but in fact is just wishful thinking that everybody would have their view, something like ‘can’t we all believe like I do?’ And if the answer to that isn’t obvious, no, we can’t. 

There are core beliefs that are not up for debate, like Yeshua’s sacrifice for instance, His death and resurrection in the body and if someone refutes it, is considered a heretic. But there are other issues like the end times for instance and understanding them is not considered paramount for one’s salvation. On this subject people can research to their heart’s delight and come up with a thousand theories but they will be just that: theories, because we simply don’t have enough information to interpret things ‘correctly’. Some might argue with that and say ‘what are you talking about? Of course we have enough information!’ and to that I can just shake my head and say ‘anyways…’ 
 I have a TV show I follow and even before the next episode is released there are fanatics of the show that know every possible detail and have read the books (even if the show doesn’t follow the book to the letter) and these people make all kinds of predictions about what will happen next. And the amount of theories out there is mind blowing and some get it right but not entirely, because unless you are the one writing the script or part of the cast, all you get is theories. It’s the same with the end time theories.

 But I don’t wish to talk about the book of Revelation, but about a behavior. I keep hearing people throwing the word ‘truth’ in to conversations like them claiming it makes them right. And we all want to be right, whether it’s with our life-style, our beliefs or our morals, we want to get it right and be right when presenting it to others. But here’s the tricky part:
Truth, like all abstract concepts is quite hard to define. At least our understanding of it. Philosophers have tried it ever since they discovered they can think and thus exist, but all they get are attempts at defining it in grossly exaggerated generalizations. But one thing we know is, that it’s never a notion that can be taken just by itself. In a worldly view it’s tied to knowledge, experience, facts filtered through one’s senses. In HaShem’s view it’s tied to Life. 
When Yeshua claimed to be “The Way, The Truth and The Life” it should have told us something. He’s the Truth that leads to Life. Can there be truth that leads to death? Of course. When ha nachash (the snake) spoke to Chava (Eve) in Gan HaEden (Garden of Eden) he didn’t lie. But his truth led to death. When the nachash spoke to Yeshua trying to tempt Him, he didn’t lie. But his truth was worthless. Being right is not the point, brothers. A truth that makes others feel worthless is not Yeshua’s truth. You can be right, but it doesn’t make it right. You can be right until you’re blue in the face, but if whatever truth you have doesn’t lead to Life, it’s worthless. 

I’m not saying to not speak up for what is right, on the contrary, you should. Yeshua did. All I’m saying is check yourself that you are seeking to bring Life. 

I’d rather have love than be right. And believe me when I say I love to be right. I’m not proud of it. But I like it. I have spent many years studying to have the most accurate definitions for everything I believe in and I don’t think I wasted my time. But even so, I’d rather have love than be right. Because when The End will come and we will see Him face to face, He will ask me how much I resembled Him. He is Love. And that’s not some cheesy notion that I throw around to sound spiritual. It’s a fact.
 You want to be right? Love. Like Rabbi Hillel said “Love your neighbor as yourself – This is the whole Torah. The rest is commentary —“


Bat Melech בת מלך
 Cristina כריסטינה

Friday, August 4, 2017

The face of God



“Behold, my servant shall act wisely; he shall be high and lifted up, and shall be exalted.
As many were astonished at you—his appearance was so marred, beyond human semblance, and his form beyond that of the children of mankind—so shall he sprinkle many nations.
 Kings shall shut their mouths because of him for that which has not been told them they see, and that which they have not heard they understand.” (Isaiah 52:13-15)


 This past week I’ve been thinking a lot about the Face of Adonai. I’ve heard people pray many times to see the Face of God. I always wondered if they were aware of what they were asking. I think they imagine some apparition or manifestation and blinding lights. Maybe they imagine an experience like Moshe (Moses) had when he asked to see HaShem’s glory. And it seems to make some think that wishing for that is a sign of the freedom we have now in HaMashiach (The Christ)

When Moshe asked to see HaShem’s glory, he didn’t ask to see His face. HaShem just told Him “you cannot see my face, for man shall not see me and live” and “you shall see my back, but my face shall not be seen.” (Shemot/ Exodus 33:20;23)

It seems to be implying that His back is more glorious, appealing to our senses that crave to be astonished. Seeing His face on the other hand, would kill us. And I don’t think that is because of overexposure to awesomeness. I think it has a deeper meaning than that. 

When Yeshayahu (Isaiah) prophecies about Yeshua, the embodied manifestation of HaShem (Col.1:15), he says in chapter 53:2-3:

“He had no form or majesty that we should look at him, and no beauty that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.”

One might think “oh, those Jews! They saw Yeshua and despised Him! If I would have been there I would have died with Him! Awful Jews despised what they saw and rejected Him!” You’d like to think so, huh? Well I’ve got news for you: if you or I would have seen Him hanging on a cross giving His last breath, it would have ruined our faith. Before blaming the Jews, one needs to remember that Yeshua’s closest followers lost hope when they saw Him on that cross. Why? Because the human heart doesn’t need a God that appears weak and powerless. As a matter of fact most people that lose faith in HaShem, they do so because HaShem wasn’t what they thought He was, or He didn’t answer some prayer, or didn’t intervene in some situation or didn’t perform some miracle, you know, like He’s supposed to! A God that seems weak is useless to the human understanding. We need a God that is strong, in our way of understanding strength and all-powerful as in He’ll give me anything I ask for because He loves me. 

I have seen people that seem to have every prayer answered and every desired fulfilled and it inspires others to do everything that person is doing hoping for the same results. And it’s not necessarily wrong, but I think that HaShem’s face is revealed in situations where people think He’s hiding His face for sure, because this can’t be it! 

It reminds me of the thief on the cross. I think He was the first one that looked, and I mean truly looked Adonai in the face, amidst all those wrong circumstances that pointed out “THIS CAN’T BE GOD!” and saw Him for who He was. The thief wasn’t seeing someone dressed in splendor and light, wasn’t seeing some miracle performed, wasn’t seeing a King… He was seeing someone that made all those that looked upon Him turned their face away. But the thief did something so God-like that is astonishing in its simplicity. He doesn’t look at the outward appearance, but looks at the heart. Adonai does that. When He chose David HaMelech (King David) HaShem told Shamuel “For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” (1 Sam. 16:7) The thief looks at Yeshua and sees everything that disqualifies Him to be HaMashiach (The Anointed) but he sees His heart and asks “Yeshua, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” (Luke 23:43)

I know some like to use the story of the thief as an example that it’s never too late to believe in Yeshua, and that might be one way to look at it, but I think that the main lesson to learn from this is, to not let your eyes be fooled by what you see and how Adonai might appear in your current circumstances. It might seem like He’s not able to help you in any way, shape or form, because if He could He would have done it by now, but maybe, just maybe, if you choose to look at His heart for you, instead of whatever it is that makes Him appear weak in your eyes, you might just see the Face of God. 


Bat Melech בת מלך
 Cristina כריסטינה

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Avraham

“No! No one who was great in the world will be forgotten, but everyone was great in his own way, and everyone in proportion to the greatness of that which he loved.
 He who loved himself became great by virtue of himself, and he who loved other men became great by his devotion, but he who loved God became the greatest of all.
 Everyone shall be remembered, but everyone became great in proportion to his expectancy. One became great by expecting the possible, another by expecting the eternal; but he who expected the impossible became the greatest of all. Everyone shall be remembered, but everyone was great wholly in proportion to the magnitude of that with which he struggled. For he who struggled with the world became great by conquering the world, and he who struggled with himself became great by conquering himself, but he who struggled with God became the greatest of all. Thus did they struggle in the world, man against man, one against thousands, but he who struggled with God was the greatest of all. Thus did they struggle on earth: there was one who conquered everything by his power, and there was one who conquered God by his powerlessness. There was one who relied upon himself and gained everything; there was one who in the security of his own strength sacrificed everything; but the one who believed God was the greatest of all. There was one who was great by virtue of his power, and one who was great by virtue of his hope, and one who was great by virtue of his love, but Abraham was the greatest of all, great by that power whose strength is powerlessness, great by that wisdom which is foolishness, great by that hope whose form is madness, great by the love that is hatred to oneself.”
― Søren Kierkegaard

Monday, July 10, 2017

Questions



Tell me, if I just say ‘I’m sorry’… how is that right?
For every word or thought that bruised Your heart,
For every time I see darkness when I look at light
For every time I lose hope and walk just by sight?

Do You hurt when my words are many and my actions few?
When I misunderstand almost everything You do,
Do You feel discouraged when I forget what’s true?
Do You ever feel like You could tell me what burdens You?

Do You ever feel lonely in this relationship?
Have I made this all about me? Have I lost my grip?
Am I still someone You would want to keep,
Even if I often forget this is a courtship?

Don’t feel discouraged by my lack of fruit,
Even I know that Your love is absolute.
So don’t lose hope, my King -- Your grace I won’t refute,
For if I do anything, I’ll make You feel loved, my beautiful strong Root!



Bat Melech בת מלך
 Cristina כריסטינה