Shevat 5777 (2016)

blessed-1

Wow, it’s been almost two months since I’ve written on this blog.  I’ve meant to, but life sometimes just gets busy.  And time does fly when you’re having fun.

We spent seven weeks down in San Clemente at the end of the year, and it was lovely.  We rented a condo that had a panoramic ocean view, and I spent the time just relaxing, reading, and spending quality family time with my husband and kids.  Just allowing God to refresh my soul.  I slept better than I had in a long time.  I spent dinners, coffee dates and beach time with good friends who have become more family than friends.  Just simple, pleasant long chats with girlfriends who encourage me, build me up and cause me go farther with God.  I was also teaching the book of Hebrews at our church down there as well as doing my weekly online teaching of the book of Romans.  The Hebrews study is finished, and we are wrapping up our Romans study next week.  So, I’ll now have more time to devote to this blog, and I’ve been putting together notes and studies for a book I’m working on.

We are almost at the end of the month of Shevat.  Shevat is spelled shin-beit-tet in Hebrew.  Shin is a picture of a crown.  Beit is a house, household or family.  Tet is the letter for goodness.  Shevat is a reminder that God has crowned our households…..our families with goodness. Psalm 65:11 “You crown the year with your goodness, and your paths drip with abundance.  Another translation says even the hard places overflow with abundance. 

Asher is the tribe associated with the month of Shevat.  Asher means blessed or prosperous and comes from the root word “ashar” meaning to go on, to advance or to make progress.  Asher was blessed with the potential for every earthly blessing – abundant resources, the most fertile land in Canaan, many children, peace with the other tribes, the favor of God and security from enemies.  He is known as the prosperous one.

His blessing from Moses indicated both prosperity and pleasure.   Asher is the blessing beyond the norm – to be given more than what is necessary for just basic survival.  2 Cor 9:8 “And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others (New Living Translation).”  1 Tim 6:17b “….. place your confidence in God who richly provides us with everything to enjoy.”  We are meant to not only be prosperous but to enjoy that prosperity, both the spiritual and earthly riches.

We are in the decade of 70 on the Hebrew calendar which means ayin.  Ayin is symbolic of the ability to see or perceive and the choice of good and evil.   This decade (2010-2019) is a season to have increased vision. To open our spiritual eyes and begin to see from God’s perspective.

From God’s perspective everything He is ever going to do for us has already been done in Jesus.  2 Peter 1:3 “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through the knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.”  Has given us… it’s past tense.  It’s already done.  All that we have to do is receive it and walk in it.  To do that we have to change our perception and see it as God does.  Sometimes our vision gets clouded by our five senses and by circumstances in life.  At times, others words can cause us to see ourselves through their perception of us instead of God’s.  God’s Word is a mirror.  When we look into it, we see who we truly are. Created in His image and His likeness.  We are joint heirs in Christ.

Exchange your vision for His.  Begin to see that He has already given you everything you will ever need for life… and for godliness.  Allow God to do the exceedingly, abundantly, above all you could ask, think, hope or imagine in your life this month in and through you!

This month walk in the revelation of all that God wants to do in your life… the prosperity He wants to pour out on you… not just enough but overflow.  Prosperity AND pleasure!   Walk in His goodness, in His richness.  This is a month to go forward and continue on in the inheritance He has blessed us with.  In Shevat, let’s remember to enjoy His bounty in our lives… to be happy…. full of joy, proclaiming “I am blessed with prosperity and pleasure in Christ Jesus”.  This is a GOOD month.

♥ Robin

Tammuz 5776 (2016)

keep eyes on prize

Wow can’t believe we’re already 1/2 way through the month of Tammuz and this is the first time I’ve had a free moment to even post a blog about it!  We have been extremely busy here in the Smit family.  Summertime is always a busy season for us here at the Farm… we have so many different varieties of summer fruits and it seems like it’s non stop until around October.  I’ve also been teaching every Sunday night at our church which means I study all week and just haven’t had the extra time needed for blogging.  However, we did manage to take a few days and go to San Clemente and enjoy life at the beach… we’ve missed it!  All that to say, I’m so happy today to blog about the wonderful month of Tammuz.

Every month in Biblical times had a different meaning and purpose… it was a new prophetic season.  

Jews in Biblical times had a special celebration at the beginning of every month, it was a time to put God first and seek direction for the new month.  It was called Rosh Chadesh (Head of the Month).   They came together to praise God, gave their first fruit offerings and to hear what He was saying for the month….they listened to the prophets to gain direction for the month ahead.

Tammuz is the 4th month on the Hebrew Biblical calendar and the 10th month on their civil calendar.  It is a month to worship and stay faithful. A month to wait on God and choose to trust Him.  It is also the month associated with the tribe of Reuben.

Reuben was the firstborn son of Jacob and Leah, and as such he was born into a position of great privilege.  

In Genesis 49:3,4 Jacob prophesies over Reuben that “he is my firstborn, my might, and the beginning of my strength, the excellency of dignity, and the excellency of power.”  This was his position.  He was destined to inherit the double portion. He was to be the leader of the tribe and the priest of the family.  But like his Uncle Esau, Reuben lightly esteemed his birthright…. he acted so disgracefully that he forfeited his birthright – Gen 35:22.

This incident changed the course of his life.  The double portion was taken away and given to Joseph.  Leadership as a tribe was taken away and given to Judah.  Priesthood was taken away and given to the tribe of Levi.  When Jacob blessed the other sons he pronounced a curse on Reuben – telling him he would not excel.

Why did Reuben do this?  Jacob’s family had been through a traumatic period.

  • They had fled from Laban who had chased them down and would have killed Jacob if God had not intervened.
  • Escaping Laban then they faced a confrontation with Esau who also tried to kill Jacob
  • Entering Canaan their sister Dinah was raped at Shechem and two of her brothers massacred all the men of the city in retaliation.  Canaanites were outraged.
  • Fleeing Shechem, Rebekahs nurse Deborah died and was buried at “The Oak of Weeping”  Then Rachel went into labor and died giving birth to Benjamin.
  • Still they journeyed on until they came to the tower of Eder where they finally stopped.

So the whole family had gone through a time of tremendous upheaval, violence and loss.  They had to just keep moving through all of it.  Not until they stopped at the tower of Eder could they even begin to process what they had just gone through!

That’s when Reuben went in to Bilhah.  He wasn’t even thinking about what blessings lay ahead.  He wasn’t thinking about all he could lose…. he wanted comfort NOW!

He was desperate for comfort and security and sought them in Bilhah instead of in God.  

The biblical tower of Eder was built near Hebron as a watchtower shepherds watched their flocks from. Eder became a symbol of God’s watchfulness over His people. It’s a place of refuge.  That’s when Reuben went in to Bilhah.  It was here that Reuben should of sought refuge in God.  Allowing Abba Father to refresh his soul… a soul that had been through a series of traumatic events.  Doing that would have restored his vision and helped him walk out his prophetic destiny.

So, he went in to Bilhah.  He wasn’t even thinking about what blessings lay ahead.  He wasn’t thinking about all he could lose…. he wanted comfort NOW!  He was desperate for comfort and security and sought them in Bilhah instead of in God. Bilhah means terror or trouble.  It also means worn out…. something so worn out that it serves no purpose.  Another possible definition means foolish.

These definitions sum up for us what Reuben was experiencing when he went in to Bilhah.  His action was foolish…Ps 14:1 – a fool says there is no God… a better translation is a fool says in his heart “no God!”.  Reuben by yielding to sin was saying no to God… no to His promises, no to His destiny for Reuben, no to trusting God to see him through this time in his life.  He was so worn out in life that he ended up losing sight of his purpose in God.

Reuben’s name means “behold a son”.  Behold means to see…. see a son!  It’s important in this season that we begin to see ourselves as “sons”.  Sonship is our destiny that was marked out for us in love by God (Eph 1:5).  Having correct vision… seeing ourselves as God sees us, in a position of sonship… will keep us from forfeiting our spiritual inheritance.

God wants to awaken the mantle of “Sonship” in our lives in this season.  Psalms 2:7-8 – we are to declare/decree our position as sons;  Gal 4:1-7 – time to claim our inheritance as sons;  Rom 8:14-17 – as sons & daughters we are endowed with authority in His kingdom;  This is a time to displace, to cast off  an “orphan spirit” and embrace the spirit of sonship with all of the rights, privileges, and responsibilities (John 5:19).

Because of Reuben’s sin, his birthright was forfeit.  The wonderful inheritance… the prophetic destiny… God intended for him was lost.  Reuben took his eyes off the prize (Phil 3:14)… when you lose sight of the goal you are always in danger.  Wrong vision can cost you your inheritance. The sad thing is his descendants followed in his footsteps… the tribe of Reuben also lost their inheritance.

Next time we’ll look at how Reuben’s descendants followed in his footsteps……

~ Robin