Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Welcome to Tuesday's Together in the Word, hosted by DeeDee at I Have No Greater Joy... We are a group of women reading through parts of the New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs this year, using a reading plan posted on DeeDee's site. Please join in. No need to start from the beginning. Just join us where we are!

Nuggets gleaned from this week's reading...

The Apple of Our Eye

In his warning about adultery, the King Solomon had some wise wise words for us to heed. Much instruction is given regarding adultery in the Bible. Simply put, don't do it, don't think it. We know it's wrong. We think surely it will never happen to us and we would never engage in a physical affair, but there also emotional affairs to be on guard against. One wayward look his way, one sensitive and kind word from him, and the potential for an emotional affair flares up quicker than a fire doused with a drop of gasoline! How do we keep from it, though?

"Keep my commands and you will live; guard my teachings as the apple of your eye. Bind them on your fingers; write them on the tablet of your heart." ~ Proverbs 7:2-3 (NIV)
Beloved, guard that heart that lives inside you and don't listen to the Deceptor who will tempt you to go down a path you will find hard to come back from.
We are to keep God's commands so that we don't enter into the death that affairs can cause. The Hebrew word for keep and guard is the verb shamar. It's meaning is rich with how to keep.
1) to keep, guard, observe, give heed
a) (Qal)
1) to keep, have charge of
2) to keep, guard, keep watch and ward, protect, save life
a) watch, watchman (participle)
3) to watch for, wait for
4) to watch, observe
5) to keep, retain, treasure up (in memory)
6) to keep (within bounds), restrain
7) to observe, celebrate, keep (sabbath or covenant or commands), perform (vow)
8) to keep, preserve, protect
9) to keep, reserve
b) (Niphal)
1) to be on one's guard, take heed, take care, beware
2) to keep oneself, refrain, abstain
3) to be kept, be guarded
c) (Piel) to keep, pay heed
d) (Hithpael) to keep oneself from
I love these definitions because it just draws to the surface how important the word keep is! Keep, guard, observe, give heed, pay heed, keep oneself from, abstain, observe, protect, restrain......We truly must keep God's commands in all these ways, not only to avoid potential affairs but to be on the lookout for sin in general. There is one commandment in particular that addresses this. It's so important that the seventh of the Ten Commandments that God gave to Moses.
"You shall not commit adultery." ~ Exodus 20:14 (NIV)
We are to guard these teachings as the apple of our eyes. The eye is an important part of the body. With it we take in the things that surround us and process the images in our brain.
The Hebrew word for apple does not refer to a fruit at all. 'Iyshown means:
1) pupil of the eye
2) middle of the night (that is the deepest blackness)
The pupil of the eye is in the center. Center. Bells went off for me there. The Hebrew word for eye is interesting to me. `Ayin means:
1) eye
a) eye
1) of physical eye
2) as showing mental qualities
3) of mental and spiritual faculties (fig.)
2) spring, fountain
We have the physical and mental eye. From there it seems to go to the heart. But remember.
"The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?" ~ Jeremiah 17:9 (NIV)
We cannot trust our hearts when a gesture is made from someone else when we're feeling neglected. When our husbands don't seem to understand us, we cannot and should not pour our hearts out to a willing male listener, sensitive though he might be. Our marriages should remain pure. When we married, the two became one. There is no room for another suitor in our lives. Emotional affairs are just as wrong as physical ones.
Women of Worth
I love Titus 2. It's the heart of At the Well. I would encourage you to visit this site if you haven't and be encouraged by women who are learning and doing what this Scripture teaches.
"Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God." ~ Titus 2:3-5 (NIV)
The older ladies had to be taught how to live so they could teach the younger ones. Having mentors is important. Back in the day, the women at the well connected, I suppose, like we do in our life groups or Sunday School classes. While they were busy at work and likely didn't have time for coffee at the well, they did have time to chat as they drew water for their needs at home.

To me, being a Titus 2 woman means incorporating the admonitions in the verses above into my daily life, weaving them into the fabric of my being and hopefully passing on what I've learned to others younger than I. I can do this through example, through writing, through speaking and the like. The most effective way I've learned to lead is by example, and it's one of the best ways that I'm taught. I love good teaching, don't get me wrong, but my prayer is that as I see women put "self-control" and "loving their husbands" and "kindness" into action that it spur me on to imitate this behavior until it becomes as natural as my heartbeat.
Just Read It
Like the popular shoe company's slogan, "Just Do It", I would encourage you to click here and read Psalm 32 and especially Psalm 33. I cannot tell you how I was encouraged by the verses contained therein.
"May your unfailing love rest upon us, O LORD, even as we put our hope in you." ~ Psalm 33:22 (NIV)
Is your hope in God? His unfailing love does rest upon you. I feel it in my bones and in my heart and soul. It's a privelege to know that His unfailing love rests upon us. Do you feel it?
The Hebrew word for unfailing love is checed. It means:
1) goodness, kindness, faithfulness
2) a reproach, shame
I need both 1 and 2 in my life. I need His goodness, kindness, and faithfulness, but I also need that shame and reproach, that feeling of guilt, when I've sinned so that I can confess and repent and receive His forgiveness.
I really need to stop here. My post is too long already. I've blown out my knee somehow and now my foot is swollen and cold. I will be heading to the doctor soon to find out what's what. If I don't visit soon, that means I'm elevating and icepacking it, I'm sure. Oh the joys of this earthly body. One day soon I'll have a resurrected body with which to worship my Savior. I was thinking about this last night. Usually when I climb into bed I put my right knee on the bed first. I cannot put any weight on it and I keep forgetting that each night, so I go through pain and then remember to sit and swing my legs into bed. Wilson, our 4 year old toy poodle, thinks that I'm playing when I cry out. It's quite comical. In my resurrected body, though, I will be able bow on my knees and cry, "Holy!" without any pain. Oh, what a day that will be!



The Real Me! said...

Great post my friend. I am so sorry about your knee, but agree that I can't wait for our resurrected bodies. Hallelujah!
Big hugs my friend.

Faye said...


Denise said...

Such a nice post.

Lady of Value said...

Great post!

DeeDee said...

Hey - Laurie Ann... stopping by to check on you- you did not link to us and I wondered if you had blogged... LOL (so I added you to the Mister Linky - hope that is ok)
Sorry to here about your knee I will be praying for you.
You are a blessing!