Deuteronomy 30:5-6 (New International Version)
5 He will bring you to the land that belonged to your fathers, and you will take possession of it. He will make you more prosperous and numerous than your fathers. 6 The LORD your God will circumcise your hearts and the hearts of your descendants, so that you may love him with all your heart and with all your soul, and live.
2 At that time the LORD said to Joshua, "Make flint knives and circumcise the Israelites again."
9 Then the LORD said to Joshua, "Today I have rolled away the reproach of Egypt from you." So the place has been called Gilgal to this day.
Someone shared with me a few days ago, on the scriptures above. She explained that this was the second generation of the Israelites that had left Egypt and that God was taking away from them, the reproach of the previous generation.
The act of circumcision, represented a taking away of the stuff clinging from Egypt--the hearts being peeled, with nothing from the past to hold them back from the pursuit of all that God had for them.
This friend is spending some time in fasting and prayer, over the forty days between the day of Pentecost--which was on May 28th--and July the 7th, 07--which being the seventh day of the seventh month of the seventh year of this millenium, is significant.
Numbers have significance in scriptures, and seven denotes spiritual perfection. It is the number or hall-mark of the Holy Spirit 's work.
What an awesome idea, I thought, to take time to be open to God's deep work, allowing him to free us completely from the chains of our past, so that we step into the newness of the life he has prepared for us, with nothing of the past clinging to us.
"And," my friend said, "Once we are free, next comes the pursuit--of God and all that he wants to do through us."
God has been freeing me from wrong patterns that have been hurtful to others and have damaged relationships. I am so very grateful for the changes that I am experiencing in my personal relationships. I feel freer, more relaxed, happier, more at peace, than I have ever felt.
As my friend said, "He gives treasure. You thought you were going to receive gold coins, one at a time, and instead, he opens up a whole treasure chest."
Prayer: Dear Lord, I pray with this friend and other friends too, that you will lead us into the fullness of all that you have prepared for us--in this world and the next. Yes, Lord, we follow hard after you!
Hebrews 12:1 (New International Version)
1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.