Posts made in September, 2013

Our Steps Established – A New Journey

Posted by on Sep 19, 2013 in Personal, Torah & Life |
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The heart of man plans his way,
but the L-RD establishes his steps.

Proverbs 16:9

 

Judy and I moved to the Boise area about a year and a half ago.  Life has kept us very busy since then, especially with the arrival of our 5th child in May!  But deep in our heart has always been the desire to build a healthy, vibrant, Messianic community here in the area.

With that purpose in mind, we built a website to get our name out, hoping that others would find us who were also interested in this same thing.  Through the website, we met wonderful people and are so very thankful for that!

However, we realized in September that the L-RD has really called us to something a bit different, at least for a season of our lives.

This may come as a surprise to many of you, but we are returning to the greater Christian church.  A great number of Messianic believers cringe at this idea, turned off at the idea of facing replacement theology, supercessionism, and “grace vs. law” doctrine, and these things definitely don’t excite us.  But we know without doubt that this is the path that G-d has called us to walk.  We are excited about joining with a local church, working to help grow their community, worshiping together with them, and building friendships for us and our children.

In the process, we are praying that the L-RD will open doors for us to share the joy we have found in the Torah and in discovering the Jewish roots of our faith.  While this is not our main reason for returning to church, we are hoping and praying that HaShem will open opportunities for us to share with our Christian brothers and sisters. This is truly where the heart of G-d has drawn us.

We will still be keeping the Sabbath in our home and remaining Torah observant. If you would like to join us for Torah study on a Saturday afternoon, we’d love to meet you and share this journey together!

Blessings,

-Mark

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Rosh Hoshannah / Yom Teruah

Posted by on Sep 5, 2013 in Biblical Holidays |
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Rosh_Hashanah_Symbols

Greetings and blessings to you from us! We trust this post finds you and yours doing well and in good health, physically, spiritually and emotionally.

Today is Rosh Hoshannah / Yom Teruah. Rosh Hoshannah means ‘Head of the Year’. It is literally the Day of Blowing (Yom Teruah), also known as the Feast of Trumpets. It is found in the Bible in Leviticus 23:23-25:

And the L-RD spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the people of Israel, saying, In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall observe a day of solemn rest, a memorial proclaimed with blast of trumpets, a holy convocation. You shall do no ordinary work, and you shall present a food offering to the L-RD.

Jewish tradition holds that this is the time of year G-d created all things according to Genesis 1. I believe that is very fitting. Why? Because Rosh Hoshannah is the beginning of a time of great introspection and restoration. Just as all things started new at creation, so, too, we have the opportunity at Rosh Hoshanna to start fresh in our own lives. Rosh Hoshannah/Yom Teruah is the beginning of the 10 Days of Awe. During this time we ask G-d to help us search our hearts. If we’ve wronged anyone, we make it right. If we’ve put up barriers between ourselves and G-d, we tear them down. It is a time of preparation for the holiest day of the year, Yom Kippur (The Day of Atonement).

This time reminds us that G-d is merciful and gracious, but He also requires holiness from us. Part of holiness and relating rightly to G-d is relating rightly with other people in our lives.

Our Master, Yeshua, commanded us to live at peace with one another. In fact, our relationship with G-d is directly affected by how we relate to one another. In Matthew 5:23-24 Yeshua says:

So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.

The onus is on us to make things right when we realize someone has been hurt or offended by our actions. We’re not to wait until they bring it up, but we’re to be proactive about making amends instead. The clear implication here is G-d won’t hear our prayer or receive our gift if we’re not in right relationship with those around us. 1 John 4:20-21 says:

If anyone says “I love G-d”, and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love G-d whom he has not seen.
And this is the commandment we have from Him: whoever loves G-d must also love his brother.

For some of us, we have had strained relationships for years. Trying to right past wrongs doesn’t seem feasible.

That’s what Rosh Hoshanna is for! It’s G-d’s gift to us to give us the opportunity to correct our past mistakes, no matter how long we’ve been making them. This applies to many areas of our lives, but the one we’re focusing on today is our relationships.

Romans 12:18 says:

If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.

There’s no better time for a fresh start than now. Let this Rosh Hoshanna be the season of change and restoration for you and those in your life!

May you have a sweet new year!

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