New Year, New Season, Spring Cleaning

Rosh HaShanah!

The head of the year A.K.A. The New Year has come in and come Sunday evening, it will be the fifteenth day of the first month on the Creator’s Calendar, and April 1 on ours.  Every year we come into a new season I ask the Lord what He wants to show me about Passover that I didn’t know before.  What new thing in me does He want to renew and what old thing in me does He want taken out so that I can continue to walk in victory.  This year would not leave me wanting for anything as I have more that He is sharing then I believe I ever had before.

Getting My House In Order!

Passover has a built in filter for the process that we have termed “spring cleaning”.  There are several things in particular I want to point out concerning this Passover that is important.  The cleaning was one thing that was significant, but one difference from our spring cleaning and the cleaning required for Passover is the cleaning that Yah instructed His people to do during this time was specifically related to leaven.  Biblically speaking leaven has both a positive and negative use, just like a battery.  Leaven in scripture is compared to sin, but is also positively used to describe how Yah has sowed His people in the earth.  (Matt 16:6,11-12; 1 Cor. 5:6-8; Matt. 13:33)

In First Corinthians we are admonished to get rid of the old leaven, and to become a new lump.  The dual principle of leaven is it shows us that when we do what we do in our own strength, carrying out the rudiments of our own ways that it is unprofitable for the kingdom, but if we allow the Lord to sow us in the earth like leaven we impact the world for His kingdom.  Nevertheless the purging is essential because over time we begin to find that we collect things that the Lord has not given us nor instructed us to carry.

For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. (Mat 11:30)

This scripture to me is a very easy way we can see if we are taken in more then we can handle.  The more we have the more responsible we have to be with what we have and this in and of itself can be burdensome.  The tell tell signs that you are biting off more then you can chew is when you are unable to sleep, you don’t have time to fix a proper meal for yourself or your family, unable to take one day off to rest, and physically you are tired, blood pressure is high, and immune system is low.  We often times just use drugs to bandaid these warnings, but the truth of the matter is these are signs that you are biting off more then you can chew.  You are looking to yourself rather then looking to the Author and Finisher of your faith.  This is a good time to look and see if you are carrying things or holding on to things that Yah is saying let go of, give to another, lighten your load, get rid of.  Too often we take on projects and attempt to meet the needs of others when in reality what we need to take is a break.

Everything that Yah created for us to take into our bodies was meant to come out.

The things God has for us to consume are like us and the things that we need to live, its death in us producing life in us.  Just as real food expires, we expire, and guess what no two seasons are the same.  There may be some things that God has planted in your life to be like a tree that should never be taken down.  I liken those things to being your legacy.  Your legacy represents what you plant in the earth that is to be perpetually producing even after you are gone.  However, we don’t want to confuse that which is supposed to be a tree (legacy) with that which is supposed to be the fruit on the tree.  Fruit, unlike the tree has a time that it is to be picked, a certain amount of time that it should be consumed, and in time if it is not consumed it will expire or rot.  Probably one of the most profound truths that Yah has given us in nature is the picture of what happens when we allow the perfectly good fruit He has given us to waste rather then us to consume that thing so that it can fulfill it’s purpose.  Like that fruit we allow a thing Yah has placed in us to expire rather then maximize the benefit of that thing.  Think about it, when we waste a piece of fruit the ground gets the benefit of its nutrients, if we would have consumed it our bodies would reap the benefit, the fact that it is adding to our life means that others get to benefit from the strength it provides to us, and finally the ground still gets the benefit of it because what comes in is destined to come out and to the ground is where it inevitably goes.

Do we fully fill our purpose? Like so many things in my freezer we try to hold on and extend the life of something till it is convenient for us to consume it and by the time we are ready that thing we eat has lost much of its nutrients and if we wait too long becomes unprofitable altogether for us.  I liken this to a purpose not fully filled.  We may do our part to begin with, we pick it from the tree, we wash it and preserve it, if we aren’t ready to eat it we store it.  However, everything that is made to profit our bodies expire whether we use it or lose it.  To put in all the grunt work to preserve the food, only to let it spoil is to start a project that never is completed or begin a race where you get to the finish line and just stop.

If we take that fruit to its end beyond storing it but actually consuming it then we have fulfilled the purpose of the fruit. For the fruit wasn’t created to just rot and go back to the ground it was created to first be consumed by something else that has life, human or animal and then after decomposition within our system return to the ground as fertilizer.  To grow and then wither without being consumed is like aborting its purpose, for us to live and die but haven’t fulfilled the purpose to which we were called is the same thing.  This is why it was important for Messiah’s disciples to understand what He mean’t that we must eat His flesh and drink His blood.  If we come close enough to study God’s word, to teach others about its importance but we never make a commitment ourselves then it is as if we just trodden His precious blood underfoot and trampled on it.  We won’t get the benefit of His word unless we consume it and make it apart of our life like that piece of fruit becomes when we digest it.

Another aspect of leaven is it holds you down and too much of it becomes a burden.  It is just like the principle of giving and receiving.  We are called to be vessels for His glory there is but so much that He gives us to retain, the majority is to be poured out like the blood of our Messiah was poured out for us on Passover.  The other picture of removing the leaven is the emptying of ourselves so that we can be filled with Him.  Most of us are so full of ourselves there is no room in us for God’s glory, and since He won’t share the space He created in us with anyone else we find ourselves further from hearing and doing what He has called us to do.  Thus, removing the old unprofitable, out of season leaven makes room for the new.

Preparing for Departure:

The final aspect of Passover that Yah has been dealing with me on didn’t begin  this year but in the past few years is living ready to leave.  The greatest challenge our forefathers faced who lost their lives in the wilderness was an attachment to the convenience, the comfort, and “perceived” reliability of the house of bondage.  While they complained about the harsh treatment of Pharaoh such that their cries reached heaven and Yah begin to make preparations to deliver His people. (Exo. 2:23; Exo. 3:7)  The constant murmuring of the people in the wilderness was about returning to this place that was a place of harsh bondage.

Never confuse the time to get patriotic and fight with the voice of Yah to go!

We should never become so determined to be somewhere that we can’t hear the voice of the Father when He is instructing us to go.  The greatest picture of the place where God’s presence is to dwell is within us.  While during the time Messiah walked the earth there was a temple that was built by man’s hands but the evidence that was clear was that God’s glory wasn’t there.  Sounds familiar?  We need to really be honest with ourselves and ask if what we are doing, how we are worshiping God if His glory, His presence is really with us?  The worst deception that we can be in is to be self deceived.  This is one of the benefits to me of Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread because a New Season opens the door for not just getting old things out in the natural but doing a real self check on where we are in our walk with God.  Like the instructions given in scripture concerning  fruit trees if what we are doing isn’t producing fruit and it should be then we need to really analyze do I continue or do I start fresh? Am I wasting my fertilizer (finances, time, and energy) on this particular tree that could be producing something more somewhere else?  Do I need to just take some time and determine where I should be?  Should I be walking, sitting, or standing?

If we haven’t reached whatever that level was we had hopes for something its okay to acknowledge that and move on.  It is better even to bury that thing and move on, knowing that when or if Yah desires to bring that thing to pass He is able to resurrect it.  However, there comes a point where human effort is futile and acceptance that you have beaten whatever that horse is long enough has to be acknowledged and you just move on.

This moving on in life was a part of the Hebrew culture.  I am always amazed as I consider the life of Father Abraham.  Here is a man who was willing to follow the Father, leaving behind the comfort and familiarity of home to go where the Father led him without having a sure planned map.  It is no wonder he is considered the Father of our faith because too many of us become too comfortable with remaining stagnant when the writing is all over the wall that the Father has moved on.  Fear of the future paralyzes us to remain comfortable in the present, and usually it takes becoming extremely uncomfortable or as it has been in the past few years a need for God to tear the structure completely down before we catch a clue.  In fact, this is also apart of Abraham’s life, the two times he found himself in Egypt he willingly gave his bride away was in search of food.  Hunger will drive you out of a place and into another, however the danger in that is like Abraham and like Lot you risk losing your family chasing convenience at the expense of following Yah.

It is said of Abraham that he was looking for a city whose builder and maker was God. (Heb. 11:10)  I don’t know if he actually found that place while he walked the earth, but I can sure appreciate His trust in God to chase after Him instead of the deceitfulness of riches and the lust of other things which hinder so many of us from moving with Him.  We have so many excuses for why we can’t simply do what the Father calls us to do.

To that end walking in the Spirit has been what the Father has led me to focus on this year.  My goal is to do a series of articles on the fruit of the Spirit spoken of in Galatians.  If there was ever any time in history that we needed to know that we are standing on a sure foundation this is it.  So many of us are always learning, with knowledge being so abundant, but how many of us are coming into a knowledge of the truth? How many of us are doing what the book of James admonishes us to do, which is not just be hearers of the word but doers?  This is a new season and like Passover was when it was originally put into place we had better be ready, with our staff in our hands and our shoes on our feet. Ready to move with the Spirit of God and to leave the place and things of bondage to pursue that place that the Father has prepared for us.  A New Year, A New Season, and Now it is time for Spring Cleaning!

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