Bless Your Heart by Cindy Colley

Sister to Sister: Your Portion, Right and Memorial

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Count-Your-Many-BlessingsPsalm 103 is a great place to go on this Thanksgiving week to be reminded of the depth of the Lord’s mercies on His spiritual Israel. Here is David’s list of the blessings, from that chapter, showered by the Father on the Old Testament nation. How many of these are just as real to the church, the people of God, today? How many of these are very real and tangible in your personal life in 2013? As I made this list, I realized, at once, the inconceivable nature of His blessings and my own worthlessness. Here’s the list:

  • Forgiveness of iniquities
  • Healing of diseases
  • Redemption from destruction
  • A crown of lovingkindness and mercy
  • A mouth satisfied with good things
  • Renewed youth
  • Execution of judgement for oppressed
  • Ways made know to Moses
  • Acts made known to Israel
  • Mercy
  • Grace
  • Slowness to anger
  • Dealing NOT according to sins
  • Removal far from transgressions
  • Pity like a Father
  • Remembrance that we are dust
  • Everlasting mercy
  • Righteousness to grandchildren
  • A prepared throne
  • A kingdom that rules
  • Angels that excel in strength

I love to contemplate every one of these. But the one I love the most is that He deals not with people (me) according to their sins. There are no words for the gratitude that swells in me when I understand that he will not treat me as I deserve to be treated. He will look on me and not see sin in its blackness. He will reach to me and not touch the filth of sin. He will listen to me and never hear the wretched voice of sin that anguishes in my pleas. He will savor the sweet smell of my worship and not smell the stench of guilt. Surely if David could extol His mercies and claim his deliverance in the days of animal sacrifices, how much more can I bask in the blessings of forgiveness; living, as His child in the shadow of the cross! “Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless His holy name” (Psalm 103:1)

I’m reading in Nehemiah now and I am making a list of what the persecutors did to the builders in this great text. I am finding that the old devil is still using the same tactics to assault the people of God, through persecutors, today. If you find the time, making such a list from Nehemiah will encourage you. If Nehemiah and the builders could plunge forward in the face of persecution and get the great Jerusalem wall built in 52 days, why, there are some pretty important jobs his people today could be accomplishing!

The list begins in chapter two, verse nineteen. Sanballot, Tobiah and Geshom laughed at the working people of God. You have to love Nehemiah’s response to those who were laughing at them:

The God of heaven, he will prosper us; therefore we his servants will arise and build: but ye have no portion, nor right, nor memorial, in Jerusalem.”

From these few words we can know that honor for the Savior, hands for service, and hearts of separation are the keys to spiritual success. Nehemiah told the scoffers that this job was protected by a God that was bigger than any of them or all of them combined. He let them know that the building was a happening thing. And, finally, he told the enemies of God’s work that this was not their business. The way we say this in Alabama is, that as the enemies of righteousness, “they just didn’t have a dog in this hunt!”

What a rich text for the persecuted today! When people are laughing at your dedication, remember Nehemiah, the builder. Praise God, and put your hands to the “Jerusalem wall” in your life. It may be building a good marriage to His glory. It may be building great kids for Him. It may be building godliness in the heart of a friend or building a daily devotional time in your days. It may be building a bridge between two estranged hearts or building a study group in your home. It may be building a relationship of trust or a partnership of zeal and knowledge for evangelism. But build. And finally, realize that the enemy and his minions will never like what you are doing for the Lord. But it doesn’t matter because what you are building is not about them or for them or with them. They simply do not have a portion, or right, or memorial in the project. But you do. Your portion is in the holy land (Zech. 2:12), you have right to the tree of life (Rev. 22:14) and you participate in the most solemn memorial every Lord’s day.

I can’t wait to discuss these passages and more on Tuesday night (11/26) at 7 CST with those who are digging. Join us at

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