Wednesday, July 25, 2012

His Banner Over Me Is...















The title reminds me of the song I sang as a child in Sunday school. I loved the motions to the song, the verses. I had no clue what it all meant, other than it was  fun and it was about God. What else did you need on Sunday morning, right?

As I've become an adult, I know Jehovah-Nissi, The-Lord-Is-My-Banner.

When Moses went to war with the hardcore Amalekites, by lifting his arms overhead (sometimes his friends had to lift them for him) he realized something new about God. He built an altar after they gained the victory and he called it The-LORD-is-My-Banner because the LORD has sworn; the LORD will have war with Amalek from generation to generation." Ex. 17:8-15

But what is a banner all about?

In war times, someone  carried the flag into battle. The soldiers could see it and be reminded who and what they were fighting for. It gave them a focal point. Hope. Encouragement.

This morning I got up with a pinch-and-thump in my heart.

Yesterday wasn't exactly a great day for me. I let some disappointing news dictate my evening. Yes, I had family night. We played Apples to Apples and yes, I laughed and played along. Then we watched a movie and yes, I stared at the TV, but I'm certain I heard nothing. Saw even less. Less than nothing. It's possible.

This morning, as I laid out my Bible and switched on my computer, not feeling much like digging into the Bible. A little put-out with God. A little frustrated. He reminded me who He is.

I closed my eyes and saw the billowy white robe majestically blowing on the wind of the Holy Spirit's moving on my behalf. I saw the pole the robe was attached to. Old, splintered wood.

The crimson insignia flashed vividly against the hem of the flowing robe.

"Keep marching, Jess. It's not over yet. Not while I'm still over you."

"He brought me to His banqueting table, His banner over me is love."

I cracked open my banquet and chewed and savored, rich and delightful, calorie and fat free.

This is what He fed me.

"I waited patiently for the LORD; And He inclined to me, And heard my cry. He also brought me up out of the horrible pit, out of the clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my steps. He has put a new song in my mouth--Praise to our God; Many will see it and fear, and will trust in the LORD. Psalm 40:1-3

*photo credit: freedigitalphotos 
What has God fed you with during disappointing times? Share a verse! 

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30 comments:

  1. Oh Jessica, that was beautiful and powerful! I love it when God speaks to our hearts and lets us know of His wonderful presence.

    God has given me this verse before in times of despair and it is one I run to over and over:
    Isaiah 43:2
    When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.

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    1. Thank you, Sherrinda! I love this verse and it speaks to me as well today. Thanks for sharing!

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  2. First of all, I'm sorry about your disappointing news. I hope God is continuing to encourage you throughout the day today!

    I remember a particularly hard year in my life. I was an emotional wreck, but man, I just read the Psalms over and over and over. I have a prayer journal filled with the verses and prayers I prayed those days. And God did a number on my heart. Love those Psalms.

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    1. He is! In fact, He's been simply amazing and I feel so much better today. :)

      I love the comfort Psalms bring.

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  3. Woke up and read this in the Message:

    "Though the cherry trees don't blossom and the strawberries don't ripen...I'm singing joyful praise to God. I'm turning cartwheels of joy to my Savior God. Counting on God's Rule to prevail, I take heart and gain strength." Habakkuk 3: something...the Message

    I've had a stressful past six months. God is good. He is near.
    ~ Wendy

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    1. I love that! Sometimes the MSG says it so well! I said a prayer for you and your stressful time. And yes, He is certainly near! Hugs!

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  4. First, I'll be singing that song all day long, thanks:)

    Beautiful post, and I'll pray for continued encouragement today--our God is so good. I love your heart and to hear how He's feeding you. That table, yeah, I've been there a lot lately. I think He wants me to recline there for a bit:)

    Blessings today, Jess:)

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    1. Thank you for your prayers and your message to me on FB. You're such a treasure! HUGS!

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  5. That devo and my cup of coffee is making the perfect banner today! THANKS!! :)

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    1. Sounds heavenly! I had my cuppa and a devo today too! :)

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  6. I'm so sorry you've faced a dissapointment. I've found that behind every "no" that God has sent my way, He's provided an eternal "yes" - something I've learned and held onto that feeds me and shows me that, despite my dissapointment, He's in control and He has a plan. In this moment you may be too close to see the why behind the no, but as you move out further and further, you will see and know. I think of Jeremiah 29:11 "'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord. 'Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'" Praying for you, Jessica!

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    1. Thanks, Gabe! So much wisdom in your words. Thank you for sharing them with me, us!

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  7. Sorry about your disappointing news. When I get disappointing writing news, I like to whine about it to my friend on twitter who patiently listens and then encourages me to keep going :) That helps me remember how good and steadfast God's love is, and that He can use all things for good.

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    1. I see a DM in your near future! Thank you, my friend!

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  8. I love that verse!! I'm so sorry about your news. :-( I don't have a specific verse but Psalms has always been my friend in sad times. *hugs*

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  9. I'm hugging you from here, my Friend. I'm sorry that you received disappointing news. And I'm sad that you were sad. But you hit the nail on the head that as long as Jesus is still your banner, NOTHING can take you down for long. When it felt like I was drowning in the days leading up to my divorce, God seared one versed on my heart that has become a mainstay of my prayers when life knocks the wind out of me:

    "He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters. He rescued me from my powerful enemy, from my foes, who were too strong for me. They confronted me in the day of my disaster, but the Lord was my support. He brought me out into a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me." Ps. 18:16-19

    Girl, He DELIGHTS in you and being your banner. Love you!

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    1. Thanks, Donna! I love this verse. It's speaking to me today as well. You're such an encourager, FIEND! Love you

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  10. I'm so sorry about your disappointment, but so glad that God comforted you and gave you hope.

    Here's the verse I held tight too even as I faced the worst time in my life:

    "When you pass through the waters,
    I will be with you;
    and when you pass through the rivers,
    they will not sweep over you.
    When you walk through the fire,
    you will not be burned;
    the flames will not set you ablaze.
    For I am the Lord your God,
    the Holy One of Israel, your Savior..."
    (Isaiah 43:2-3a)

    Love you!

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    1. I love that! Seems like many of us have been comforted with this one! It's a good one!

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  11. Jessica, thank you for this open, honest, encouraging post. I had a difficult day yesterday with some things, and spent the morning really struggling with a pit of wallowing and the lifeline of hope and trust that God kept trying to throw me. Finally, through a message I was writing a friend, I remembered how very much I have to be thankful for. And later, as I was writing my blog post for today, God kept impressing on me Exodu 14:14-- "The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still." Suddenly my struggle over how I could make things different, what I could do to change things, ceased as I finally relinquished it to Him, choosing to trust that He will do what He will do, and I need to be still and wait on Him.

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    1. I love that verse!!!! So glad you've been comforted and feel better. Awesome, Amanda!

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  12. Love this, Jess. Thanks for sharing. I'm sorry for your disappointment. I love Psalm 40. Hope is alive.

    In one of my most darkest moments, I received Psalm 121.

    1 I lift up my eyes up to the hills—
    where does my help come from?
    2 My help comes from the Lord,
    the Maker of heaven and earth.
    3 He will not let your foot slip—
    he who watches over you will not slumber;
    4 indeed, he who watches over Israel
    will neither slumber nor sleep.
    5 The Lord watches over you—
    the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
    6 the sun will not harm you by day,
    nor the moon by night.
    7 The Lord will keep you from all harm —
    he will watch over your life;
    8 the Lord will watch over your coming and going
    both now and forevermore.

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    1. I love this verse. Selah sings this verse and it's beautiful.

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  13. I'm sorry about your disappointing news. I'll be praying for you, Jessica. God is watching over you, as beautifully illustrated as your vision of that white robe.

    I frequently read and pray Psalms 91 over myself and my husband while he is overseas in Afghanistan. The verses give me comfort and strength to carry one, knowing that God has His angels encamped around us. We will prevail, we will have joy, and through Him, we will be delivered.

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    1. Thanks, Brandie! I love that Psalm. Amen! We will prevail! ;)

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  14. Beautiful - thank you for sharing. I think that's one of the things I like about blogging. In the old days, we'd have a bummer day and not be able to tell anyone about it.... Now, we can tell the world, but with that freedom has come the desire to take our bummers and turn them into messages of hope. In other words, for me, blogging is teaching me to look for ways to turn even my darkest times into messages of hope for myself and others. You've done that today, Jessica.

    Did any of that make sense??? :-)

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    1. Made total sense to me, Becky! Thank you so much for encouraging me with your comment! And you made me laugh with the last line! Laughter is good medicine! :)

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  15. Hi Jessica! Missed your inspiring posts. I remember singing that song too (not as a child though--I'm much older than you LOL). Blessings for the rest of your week!

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  16. Yes, I've recently been claiming that "many will see it and fear" verse myself!

    But here's an uber-cool verse that my Bible flopped open to one day when I was crying out to God. II Chron. 25:9: "And Amaziah (king) said to the man of God, 'But what shall we do for the hundred talents which I have given to the troops of Israel?' (I read: the $250 I spent for a partial edit? the 4 years I've spent hawking my books? the time I've wasted writing/editing?) And the man of God answered, 'THE LORD HAS MUCH MORE TO GIVE YOU THAN THIS.'"

    Shot right to my heart. It's easy to question all that time/effort/energy/money you put into your dreams. But God has something bigger than we've ever imagined planned. I gotta believe it.

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