Love Letters from God - First Fruits

The Basket of Firstfruits (Deut 26.1-11)
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King James Bible But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming. American King James Version But every man in his own order: Christ the first fruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming. American Standard Version But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; then they that are Christ's, at his coming. Douay-Rheims Bible But every one in his own order: the firstfruits Christ, then they that are of Christ, who have believed in his coming.

Darby Bible Translation But each in his own rank: [the] first-fruits, Christ; then those that are the Christ's at his coming. English Revised Version But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; then they that are Christ's, at his coming. Webster's Bible Translation But every man in his own order: Christ the first-fruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming. Weymouth New Testament But this will happen to each in the right order--Christ having been the first to rise, and afterwards Christ's people rising at His return.

World English Bible But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, then those who are Christ's, at his coming.

Young's Literal Translation and each in his proper order, a first-fruit Christ, afterwards those who are the Christ's, in his presence,. Matthew For the Son of Man will come in His Father's glory with His angels, and then He will repay each one according to what he has done. Matthew Truly I tell you, some who are standing here will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom.

Questions to Answer

Editorial Reviews. About the Author. Theresa was born into an American military family Love Letters from God - First Fruits - Kindle edition by Theresa Nichols. Download it once and read it on your Kindle device, PC, phones or tablets. This is the very first book I ever wrote. The original title was Love Letters from God to God's Mighty Warriors. My name was Theresa Heflin at the time and it was.

We dance in advance. We worship you. And we thank you that you gave us Your Son Jesus! The words Rosh Chodesh mean head of the month, or beginning of the month. There are no rules about celebrating Rosh Chodesh, really. Free in Christ!

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That sacrifice is the source of the eternal salvation of all who believe in Christ. Paul explains that the New Covenant, like the Old, had to be sealed in blood. This time, however, the blood is not the blood of calves and goats that Moses offered at the foot of Mount Sinai, but the Blood of the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ.

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Paul tells us in this reading from the Letter to the Hebrews, has passed away, replaced by the New Covenant in Christ. Just as the Israelites whom the Lord led out of Egypt were denied entrance into the Promised Land because of their lack of faith, we, too, can fall and deprive ourselves of the Kingdom of Heaven. In spite of these words from the Gospel of John, Christianity has often separated body and spirit, rather than recognizing that they are one. Therefore, many of our prayer forms ignore or even seem to deny the body.

How many times were you told as a child not to wiggle in church?! When we recognize the unity of body and spirit, the body can become a path to prayer. Through your God-given senses you can recognize God's presence in the everyday world. Remember beauty that has opened your eyes to God: sunsets, rose buds, children playing.

Remember sounds that tell of God's love: a friend's voice, harp music, crickets. Remember the feel of puppy fur, of cool sand on bare feet, of early morning sunlight. What about the taste of communion bread, hot tea, chocolate, tears? And remember the smell of new mown grass, salt air, campfire smoke. These ordinary events that are experienced through our senses can nurture our relationship with God. Another way our bodies can guide us in prayer is to pay attention to our physical positions when we pray. Notice what happens in a group when a leader says: "Let us pray.

A bowed head is the most common prayer position in the Protestant tradition, but it is only one of many. In experimenting with body positions, I have discovered that different postures evoke different prayers. By paying attention to your bodies and feelings, we can discover the many ways our bodies like to pray.

What are your prayers when you bow your head and fold your hands? What do you pray on your knees? Or when you stand with your arms stretched up to heaven? What happens when you pray with your brothers and sisters with your eyes open and holding hands? You cannot answer these questions with your mind. Put your body in the different positions and see what happens.

If your body cannot assume some of these postures, close your eyes and imagine yourself in the different positions. You may be surprised at what you discover. Invitation to Practice Think of an activity that renews your spirit. How does your body participate in that practice? Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect Romans Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. The next time you are with others, friends or strangers, let your judgment drop away and notice the beauty in everyone.

What Is First Fruit? A Short Guide

Each morning when you arise you may want to begin the day with these six gestures. Join spirit and body in praising the Holy One and offering your thanks for life. As you do the gestures, say a one line prayer and then remain in that posture for a brief time. Move pivot to the left and to the right with your arms stretching outward toward the cosmos.

Invitation to Practice Name five things your body is doing for you right now. It's hard to stand in the center of God's acceptance and love. Job NRSV. Whatever season you find yourself in, there may have been many challenges you are faced with.

The First Fruits of the Spirit – Romans 8:16-23

Don't be discouraged! Jesus persevered and because of that truth we can find comfort in knowing we can too. Obstacles arise when we start to practice perseverance - from little daily challenges to entrenched tendencies. The first is distraction. Our consumer culture with all its so-called technological necessities gives us many ways to get off-course: cell phones, electronic games, DVDs, iPods, iPads, and the like. It is hard to stay focused on anything when there are so many chances to turn away from the task at hand.

Another roadblock to perseverance is fear, which depletes our energy so that we give up on ourselves or on the project we have committed ourselves to do. Stress and fatigue can also weaken our bodies and take us out of the game. The antidote is to stay physically fit and to eat wisely.

Boredom is another challenge we have to face as we repeat activities. Many of us don't have the emotional make-up to do the same thing again and again. A complicated project, the idea of fasting or repenting turning completely from old sinful habits to better ones can even lead us to an experience of the dark night of the soul.

When we are weighed down with the anxieties that come with a large project, we are grounded and buoyed by the spiritual practice of patience, which is like a loving sister to perseverance.

So recognizing these roadblocks, how do we cultivate perseverance? Here are some spiritual practices that can help:. Whether you are in the mood to do it, do it anyway. When the time is over, put it down. Then pick it up the next day. See what happens as a result of this to you, and to the activity. She demonstrated, along with others such as Nelson Mandela, Jackie Robinson, Civil Rights marchers and Biblical characters that perseverance is able to bring about change in both our private lives and the public arena.

Choose a Biblical hero that had perseverance to honor and emulate this week, someone who has shown you the value of this positive and powerful virtue. Affirmations can be a great help in developing your capacity to persevere. Affirmations may include your favorite Scriptures, "Even when the going gets tough, I keep going," or "Each day I will give myself credit for the progress I've made. Psalms has been called the prayer book of the Bible in both Jewish and Christian traditions. It is a collection of sung prayers that has been used in worship from the time of ancient Israel up to the present.

Because the psalms range so widely in emotional expression, from the heights of adoration and praise to the depths of vengeful curses against the enemy, they have special relevance to our prayer life. They teach us to hide nothing from God, but to bring all that is real into the only relationship that can bless the best and heal the worst in us. No matter what we are feeling -- distress, trust, anger or delight, we find the words of the psalms accompany us into God's presence. In the psalms we find words to express every conceivable human condition and feeling. These prayers give us words to glorify, confess, hope, ask, and even curse.

In so doing, they give us permission to share our whole being with God.

Ready to try it? What are some of your favorite Psalms to pray? Leave us a note telling us which one s and why! Pastors need to be on their guards against the world, the flesh, and the devil which can subtly—or not so subtly—lure them away from serving the God they love. The Apostle Paul asked for prayer several times in his letters, for rescue from unbelievers Romans , for a bold gospel proclamation Ephesians , and that the word of the Lord would speed ahead and be honored 2 Thessalonians Praying for your pastor is joining him in ministry.

Your prayers for your pastor and your church will strengthen the work being done and be a service to him. The corresponding Bible verses listed provide a command or additional support on how to pray for pastors. We read unhurriedly so that we can listen for the message God has for us there. We stay alert to connections the Spirit may reveal between the passage and what is going on in our lives.

We ask, "What are you saying to me today, Lord?