Untie the colt

Acts 4:13 (AMP) Now when the men of the Sanhedrin (Jewish High Court) saw the confidence and boldness of Peter and John, and grasped the fact that they were uneducated and untrained [ordinary] men, they were astounded, and began to recognize that they had been with Jesus.

Yesterday we began what we call “Holy Week.” Starting with Palm Sunday, we celebrate and reflect on the week leading up to the Resurrection of Jesus on the following Sunday. Palm Sunday was the day that Jesus made His triumphant entrance into the city riding on the back of colt, the foal of a donkey,(Luke 19:28-38) as prophesied in Zechariah 9:9.

Jesus was 30 years old when He was baptized and He started His ministry. We read in Luke 2:41 that His parents took Him every year to Jerusalem for the Passover Feast. We even see at the age of 12 that He was able to talk about and have an intellectual conversation about the scriptures. He was 33 years old when He went to the cross. Nearly 33 years walking into that city for the Passover Feast. Why was this one so special? Jesus knew that the time would come. There was never a time that He did not celebrate the Passover. What made Him decide this time was different?

Reading the story of John and Peter healing a man in front of the temple, and then getting arrested, made me think of what Jesus’s disciples thought when their king was hung on the cross. How many times do we say, “it was not in God’s time” because we do not see an abundance of blessing poured out on someone when they step out? Looking at these two situations. That is what it looked like in the natural. How big was their faith to say “even if?”

Jesus hung on the cross for hours in agony. He died a horrible death. Our Jesus willing did that. God did not have the colt waiting for Him to ride at the bottom of the Mt. of Olives. He had to tell His disciples to go and get it. He chose to do it!

Matthew 22:14 (AMP), Jesus said, “For many are called (invited, summoned), but few are chosen.” Do you think that meant that we are called forth and chosen? Remember in elementary school how we would be divided on team for dodge ball? We would have two “captains” and they would take turns calling out the names of the kids they wanted on their team. It was always humiliating to be the kid picked last. That is not how it works in the Kingdom. Chosen here means you have a choice. Chosen are the ones that say ‘yes’ even if.

What has got you from grabbing onto your colt and starting? We were not told the year or age that Jesus would die on the cross before hand? John and Peter did not say, “God said,” before they laid hands on the sick. It was the Holy Spirit inside of them that led them.

Many of us do not want to step out of God’s timing. May I encourage you to not be led in fear of punishment, but know that He loves a heart that is willing.

Romans 8:28 (AMP)  And we know [with great confidence] that God [who is deeply concerned about us] causes all things to work together [as a plan] for good for those who love God, to those who are called according to His plan and purpose.

Let me encourage you this Holy Week to step out into your calling. Make a contact this week. Peter and John were not qualified by man’s standards. Jesus was ridiculed even up to the moment of His death.

Matthew 27:54 (NIV) When the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified, and exclaimed, “Surely he was the Son of God!”

Even if it looks like a mess, He can turn it into good. They will be astounded at the goodness of God. Untie the colt and start!!

He calls my name

Isaiah 45:4 (AMP) For the sake of Jacob My servant, and of Israel My chosen, I have also called you by your name; I have given you an honorable name though you have not known Me.

When we named our first born we had two choices picked out for the day of deliver. We went the old fashioned way and did not find out the gender of both of our children until they were born. We had the name ‘Lillian Michelle’ if a girl and ‘Ari Daniel’ if a boy. Lillian was the name of my great aunt that made an impact on me when I was a little girl. She was strong, independent and feisty. Ari was the name of my husband’s best friend. My husband grew up in Belize, Central America, and being the only white kid, friendships meant the world to him.

We have two sons. Ari Daniel and Eli Robert (Robert after my grandfather and my husband’s father). There is deep meaning in their names. Ari in Hebrew means lion. Eli in Hebrew means high, elevated or my God. I named him after the prophets Elijah and Elisha, I wanted him to have double the anointing.

Isaiah was the prophet during the reign of King Hezekiah. King Hezekiah was a good king and did right in the eyes of God (2 Kings 18:3). He was also the king that showed the Babylonians all the treasures of the storehouse (2 Kings 20:13), there was nothing that he did not show them. This was a big no-no, because they were suppose to remain a secret to the surrounding nation.

Isaiah prophesied, 2 Kings 20:16-18, “Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Hear the word of the Lord. ‘Behold, the time is coming when everything that is in your house, and that your fathers have stored up until this day, will be carried to Babylon; nothing will be left,’ says the Lord. ‘And some of your sons (descendants) who will be born to you will be taken away [as captives]; and they will become eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.’” 

Why is this significant? In Isaiah 45:3, “I will give you the treasures of darkness [the hoarded treasures] and the hidden riches of secret places, so that you may know that it is I, the Lord, the God of Israel, who calls you (Cyrus the Great) by your name.” Who is Cyrus the Great? Why did God call Him by name?

Ezra 1:2-4 (AMP) “This is what Cyrus king of Persia says “‘The Lord, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth and he has appointed me to build a temple for him at Jerusalem in Judah. Any of his people among you may go up to Jerusalem in Judah and build the temple of the Lord, the God of Israel, the God who is in Jerusalem, and may their God be with them. And in any locality where survivors may now be living, the people are to provide them with silver and gold, with goods and livestock, and with freewill offerings for the temple of God in Jerusalem.’”

King Cyrus was not even born yet when Isaiah prophesied this. King Cyrus, of Persia, was the reason that Nehemiah was able to rebuild the walls and gates of Jerusalem. He made sure that everything that Nebuchadnezzar had taken to Babylon was returned to the temple. He made sure that temple was going to be rebuilt.

This gave me great courage during a time that I do not see enough people to do the work that God has called my husband and I to do. Those people have not even been born yet, and He has called them by name. I am not talking about a physical birth, I am talking about the new birth when we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior (John 3:5; 2 Corinthians 5:17). I do not want some other church’s people, I want the ones that He is calling by name now. We are calling them out! We are inviting ALL!!

He has called you by name, even before you were conceived in your mother’s womb. If you do not know Jesus as your Lord and Savior message me at amanda@desiringformore.org. If you do and you want to know how you can share your faith, message me too!

I pray you have an amazing week!