Devotional 107: Her Sins are Forgiven

Luke 37-50

37 And behold, a woman in the city who was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at the table in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster flask of fragrant oil, 38 and stood at His feet behind Him weeping; and she began to wash His feet with her tears, and wiped them with the hair of her head; and she kissed His feet and anointed them with the fragrant oil. 39 Now when the Pharisee who had invited Him saw this, he spoke to himself, saying, “This Man, if He were a prophet, would know who and what manner of woman this is who is touching Him, for she is a sinner.”

40 And Jesus answered and said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.”

So he said, “Teacher, say it.”

41 “There was a certain creditor who had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 And when they had nothing with which to repay, he freely forgave them both. Tell Me, therefore, which of them will love him more?”

43 Simon answered and said, “I suppose the one whom he forgave more.”

And He said to him, “You have rightly judged.” 44 Then He turned to the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has washed My feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head. 45 You gave Me no kiss, but this woman has not ceased to kiss My feet since the time I came in. 46 You did not anoint My head with oil, but this woman has anointed My feet with fragrant oil. 47 Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little.”

48 Then He said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”

49 And those who sat at the table with Him began to say to themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”

50 Then He said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.”

Women were not supposed to be of consequence, subject to the will of their husbands, however cruel. Left without choices, without education, without options, some turned to harlotry and crime.

As such, they could be equal to men in hardness of heart, infirmity of will, subject to temptation, and as prone to immorality and downfall as any of their male counterparts.  Condemned under the Law, they had no chance at redemption, until the Son of Man came to tell them otherwise.

The Pharisee said of Jesus:  “This Man, if He were a prophet, would know who and what manner of woman this is who is touching Him, for she is a sinner.”

Jesus replies: 47 Therefore I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much.

How would He know her sins were many if He was not a prophet of G-d?

The Songs of Ascent in the Old Testament was for the men of Israel to go to the mountain to seek the Lord, but G-d was not above using women to accomplish His purposes when men could not, or would not, step forward.  Abigail, in saving her foolish husband, became the wife of a king. Deborah told Barack he would get no glory if she went with him, but she obeyed the Father’s calling when he wouldn’t go without her.

It was no less true in the ministry of Christ.

Luke 8:1-3

Many Women Minister to Jesus

Now it came to pass, afterward, that He went through every city and village, preaching and bringing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God. And the twelve were with Him, and certain women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities—Mary called Magdalene, out of whom had come seven demons, and Joanna the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others who provided for Him from their substance.

Even His disciples were surprised that He would minister to them as individuals.

John 4:25 – 27

25 The woman said to Him, “I know that Messiah is coming” (who is called Christ). “When He comes, He will tell us all things.” 26 Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am He.  27 And at this point His disciples came, and they marveled that He talked with a woman; yet no one said, “What do You seek?” or, “Why are You talking with her?”

It was the women who first came to His tomb. (Luke 23:55-56)

55 And the women who had come with Him from Galilee followed after, (*Joseph of Arimathea carried Jesus body to the tomb)* and they observed the tomb and how His body was laid. 56 Then they returned and prepared spices and fragrant oils. And they rested on the Sabbath according to the commandment.

Luke 24:1-3

He Is Risen

24 Now on the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they, and certain other women with them, came to the tomb bringing the spices which they had prepared. But they found the stone rolled away from the tomb. Then they went in and did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.

And again in verse 10:

10 It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the other women with them, who told these things to the apostles.

And while it was true He didn’t condemn the adulteress brought to Him by the Pharisees, He did not exonerate her from her guilt:

John 8:10-11

10 When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, “Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?”

11 She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said to her, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.”

He never said she didn’t commit the sin.

It is our calling as husbands, fathers, and brothers, and even as sons, to minister to the souls of our female family members, and our wives in particular as life partners. As the body, we are to pray for our Sisters in Christ, edifying them and coming alongside them in the ministry of the Gospel, being careful to observe all of the Lord’s ordinances of treating them with proper respect.

Therefore I pray:

Lord Jesus, 

We thank You for our sisters in Christ, co-workers of the harvest, the Ruth’s and the Rahab’s, working in faith to spread Your Word, show Your love and compassion, and be fruitful branches of the Kingdom work that leads to life everlasting. 

We thank You for our help-mates, the mothers of our children, the brides of our youth who make our homes into sanctuaries that protect us from the outside world, and give us havens of worship and family unity.

We thank You for the elder Mothers of our ancestry, who raised us in the fear and reverence of Your Word, seeking Your presence and intercession on our behalf, that we might be sustained and prosper in Your favor as we seek Your face.

We thank You for our daughters, raised to be strong women of G-d, helpmates to their own husbands, and ministering to their own families with what they’ve been taught. We beseech You on their behalf that their men seek always to pray, and not lose heart, and know they have steadfast life partners at their side, as You ordained marriage to be.

We pray for the single woman, that she fulfill Your calling according to Your will, and that if she needs a partner, You will send her one worthy of a king’s daughter, but if You do not, bring to mind that she is not the daughter of a king, but of the King of Kings. Let her not lose heart, nor succumb to the world’s values that to be alone somehow reduces her worth and negates her purpose, that not having children renders her null in Your eyes.

We ask that You strengthen them all: the mother and the barren, the young and the old, the single and the married, the lost and the confident. Let us minister to them in Your love, with Your compassion, patience, and mercy when they also fall into sin, and make them accountable for keeping to Your precepts if they stray.

Bring to mind that they are as essential to Your ministry as we are, and they are as responsible for the Great Commission as we are, and that they are to give of their gifts and talents, as we are. 

Help us to support one another, keeping each other in prayer, believing the best of each other, and loving them as Christ loved the church, which He sacrificed His life for, submitting His will while seeking the face of the Father, unwavering in faith.

Together, let us build our houses on Your foundation, that nothing may destroy our unions, and no man can sunder what G-d has joined.

Lord Jesus, build our houses, enter them, and dine with us.

We will open the door when You knock.

May it be to us as You have said.

Amen.

 

 

Devotional 34: Sifted Like Wheat

Jesus Predicts Peter’s Denial: Luke 22: 31-32

31 And the Lord said,[a] “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. 32 But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.”

Oswald Chambers writes in My Utmost for His Highest that when Peter rebuked Jesus, it was because he thought he knew where his testing would come, but it came in a place he didn’t expect, and he wept bitterly because he failed so miserably.

Indeed, all of the Apostles swore loyalty, but when the hour came, they fled. We see our Lord sorrowful that they would not even stay up to pray for Him, as they were heavy with food and drink, coupled with doubt and not comprehending the things that Jesus said would occur.

But as I often write, Peter is perhaps the most relatable disciple, because his walk with Christ is as intense, volatile, and prone to error as our own. Jesus, in fact, implies it is Satan who speaks through Peter as the hour approaches, and Jesus rebukes not Peter, but the tempting spirit speaking through him. “This will surely not happen to You.”

It was Jesus’ own hope that the Father pass the cup of sin and gall to find a sweeter way, but He set aside His glory and desire to be spared to obey the Father.

We’re not told when Satan asked to sift Peter, to really see what he was made of, as he sifted Job. But just as God was certain in Job’s steadfastness despite his laments, Christ was equally sure of Peter’s shakiness despite his claims of steadfastness. We see in verse 32 that in fact that He already knows what Peter will do, just as he knew what Judas would do. Peter would deny Christ before men, to the point of cursing those in the crowd who insisted they’d seen him with Jesus.

It is the ultimate act of love in what Jesus not only says to Peter, but to us in our most wretched state in the lifelong war between flesh and soul,

When you have returned to Me…”

This is a statement we are to cling to, for our Savior tells us that if we deny Him before men, He will deny us before the Father. This is why the Word admonishes to seek Him while He may yet be found. No one is redeemed faithless and unrepentant from the grave.

“When you have returned to Me…”  The lost sheep is never banned from the flock, because those who follow know His voice. There is no place else to go, as we find so often in our wanderings to other temples and idols, for He alone has the words of life and truth.

As the Father grants the prayers of the Son, there is yet time for Peter to receive the keys to Heaven, and so Jesus prays not only for his return, but commands him to strengthen his brothers.

Satan has planted his tares, and will sift the saints in the last days, but it is Christ and His angels who will reap the last harvest, and there will be nothing left to glean. As John the Baptist tells us,

 12 His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clean out His threshing floor, and gather His wheat into the barn; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” (Matthew 3).

Our Lord would not have His most tempestuous, impetuous disciple be chaff; As the angel said to Mary, “Go and tell the disciples, and Peter…” (Mark 16:7)

As Peter’s denial was threefold, so was his path to restoration, as the Lord asked him three times after the Resurrection:

“Peter, do you love me more than these?”  (John 12:15)

We answer, as he did, in all our failings: “Lord, You know that I love You.”

Therefore I pray:

My Lord and Savior, my heart is grieved that Your inquiry should so pierce my heart, because I have done in deed that which made You have to ask. Under the covenant of grace, I would see myself returned and restored to you, and redeemed spotless again in the Father’s eyes.

I would have my own spirit rejoicing again in Your presence, my place in the Kingdom of Heaven assured, my crown still bright, my works unconsumed as wood, hay, stubble, or chaff, my divine work finished, and my earthly connections to those You gave me intact.

I would not be cast into the outer darkness, weeping and gnashing my teeth.

Like the holy Psalmist in whom the Father was pleased, let me be tested and tried to see if there is any wicked way in me, and give me a clean heart and an upright spirit. Help me to remember, and know, that in You my salvation is assured, my return to You certain. Strengthen my love for You and establish it unshakable in the bleakest of circumstances and the most wicked of persecutions.

And use my trials, O Lord, to help me to strengthen my brothers and sisters, that they may return to You also.

In Your Holy Name, and by the Power of the Spirit of the Living God, I ask it.

Amen.

All Nations will be Gathered Before Him

Devotional 17: All Nations will be Gathered before Him (Matthew 25:32)

   Matthew 25:31-32New King James Version (NKJV)

The Son of Man Will Judge the Nations

31 “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy[a] angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats.

 

A college professor I had once described getting off the topic as ‘birdwalking.’

I was never really sure why this particular phrase stuck with me, and I’ve since tried to research whether or not birds walk in a straight line, but as with all things these days, there are conflicting opinions.

For the purposes of not being an ornithologist, I’ll use it anyway, since I’ve told you what he meant by it.

We have before us the doctrine of the Great White Throne judgement, though nothing says it is a great white throne, but rather simply ‘the throne of His glory.’ Since his body will be transformed, whether or not we get to look at it directly is up for debate, but now I’m  birdwalking.

For those who have a ‘no-hell’ doctrine, I would ask, why then would there be a need for separation? God can’t look on sin, nor will He allow it inside. Spotless, or spotted.

There is no middle ground, no compromise, no ‘winking’ and saying “Well, all right, he / she did try.”

There is salvation in faith in Christ and repentance of sins, or condemnation.

There is only one Way to God, and while other ‘gods’ may have said “I am the way, the truth, and the life, ‘ none of them followed it with, “No man comes to the Father, but by Me.”

There are some who say the everlasting punishment Jesus speaks of is metaphorical.

As metaphors are comparative, I would ask, compared to what?

There are others who say that non-whites should not worship a white Jesus, yet when Jesus says “Go and make disciples of all nations,” I see no exceptions in that list.

If He was black, He didn’t say “Only the nations where they look like Me.”

If He was white, He didn’t say, “Only the nations where they look like Me.”

The enemy has us fighting over the wrong issues with each other: His existence, His color, what He said or didn’t say about certain issues, whether or not He was married and had children, which Bible translation is more accurate, hymns vs. contemporary worship music….

We argue all this, and have allowed the sectarianism which He forbid to invade our thinking, and have separated ourselves while saying we’re of one accord, instead of simply doing what He told us to do: preach the Gospel to the nations who don’t know Him.

Our fruit rots on the vine for all these things we debate that, at their core, are fleshly and of no use Kingdom building.

As Paul admonishes us: Cease from strife. Know nothing but Christ, and Him crucified.

As Christ commands us: Love one another, and fear God, and see the Day of Salvation through the Power of God.

The rest is birdwalking.

 

Therefore I pray:

 

        Father in Heaven, bring to mind the words of my Lord and Savior when I would be distracted, and need to ‘defend’ against the hard-hearted the nature of His sacrifice. Let me not worry about what I will say, but let the Spirit fill my mouth with what You would want them to know, and speak the Truth in love.

     Help me to plant seeds in fertile soil, or to soften hard ground to receive the Good News of the Living Word.

     Forgive me when through my silence, I renounce Your presence in my life, and keep my tongue still when I should testify to Your goodness.

    I know the plans You have for me, and as You are no respecter of persons, allow me to be gracious in imparting the word of Your willingness to bless another.

    Help me too, O Lord, in keeping my own path straight, that I might not cause my brother or sister, new to Your revelation, to stumble, to birdwalk, and stray because of  my lack of discipline and self control.

     Let my rejoicing in Your salvation of me come through in all that I say and do, and forgive me when the world comes in like a flood, and I forget what You have done in my life.

     By the Power of Your blood, and in Your Name, I ask, in faith receiving.

 

     Amen.

 

Devotional 13: Is Christ Divided?

1st Corinthians 10- 13

Sectarianism Is Sin

10 Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. 11 For it has been declared to me concerning you, my brethren, by those of Chloe’s household, that there are contentions among you. 12 Now I say this, that each of you says, “I am of Paul,” or “I am of Apollos,” or “I am of Cephas,” or “I am of Christ.” 13 Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?

We speak of ‘schools of thought,’ with foundations in schools of philosophy, where skilled master teachers of vast intelligence pushed their students to think in new ways and to question established ideas using reason and logic, and getting to the ‘true’ definition of a word and the ideas behind the meaning.

Perhaps the most common and well known of these is what we refer to now as the Socratic method:

*As a tactic and approach, Socratic questioning is a highly disciplined process. The Socratic questioner acts as the logical equivalent of the inner critical voice which the mind develops when it develops critical thinking abilities. The contributions from the members of the class are like so many thoughts in the mind. All of the thoughts must be dealt with and they must be dealt with carefully and fairly. By following up all answers with further questions, and by selecting questions which advance the discussion, the Socratic questioner forces the class to think in a disciplined, intellectually responsible manner, while yet continually aiding the students by posing facilitating questions.

A Socratic questioner should:
a) keep the discussion focused
b) keep the discussion intellectually responsible
c) stimulate the discussion with probing questions
d) periodically summarize what has and what has not been dealt with and/or resolved
e) draw as many students as possible into the discussion.

*Paul, R. and Elder, L. (April 1997). Foundation For Critical Thinking,
Online at website: www.criticalthinking.org

Paul encountered this in the roiling metropolis of Corinth, where ‘schools of thought’ were, possibly inadvertently, invented by the followers of Christ, but separated by those who listened to the preaching of Peter, Apollos, and Paul himself, respectively.

The apostle Paul quickly lets them know, with one pointed question, that such division as it concerns the finished work of Calvary does not apply to Jesus, and therefore should not apply to the faithful:

“Is Christ divided?”

Jesus didn’t die and rise that men may argue over who preaches His gospel the best.

The Corinthians were victims of their times in this, and Paul sets them straight (for the moment) in that even though they are three preachers, they are all preaching the same thing: the finished work of Jesus Christ, who died, as it says several times in the book of Hebrews, ‘once for all.’

Yet, some groups today accuse others of ‘false worship.’

And Jesus said the Gospel was to be preached to ALL the nations:

Matthew 28:19 – “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.”

and the only division there will be is between the faithless and unrepentant, and the faithful:  (Matthew 25: 31-33)

The Son of Man Will Judge The Nations

31 “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy[a] angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats.33 And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left.

Yet we get into heated discussions over his skin color, his childhood, his marital status…

As believers, though we are admonished by Christ not to do it (Mark 9:38-39), and Paul reinforces it here, we do the things we are forbidden to do; we’ve created sects of worship: different styles, different songs, different churches, and different preaching.

Any church worthy of the name, and any pastor worthy of their calling should all be emphasizing the same thing: (1st Corinthians 1:21-23)

              21 For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.22 For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after wisdom; 23 but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks[b]foolishness…

The rest is chaff in the wind. I didn’t come to the Lord’s house to hear musical skill or listen to clever oratory; I came to hear the Word of The Lord. We need to repent, burn off the dross, and return to the Gospel.

 Therefore I pray:

Lord, forgive my words and thoughts of prejudice, of hating my brother, of branding his outward shows of love towards You as phony or insincere, because their displays don’t look like mine.

Keep me from judgment of the hearts of Your servants.

Forgive me for the times I went down the paths that had nothing to do with anything You said, simply because it seemed a popular way to go.

 Keep me from ‘schools of thought’ that seek to limit my understanding of You, and bind me with chains of duty and fear instead of your light and easy yoke.

 Forgive my worldly compromise, for daily, I fail You in this.

 Lift me, O Lord, back into Your heavenly presence, and let Your light be as the noonday sun, to burn and purge my sin from me, as far as the east is from the west, or the left nail-scarred hand from the right, where they stretched out Your loving arms, and You embraced this unclean thing, and called me to Your pierced side.

 Thank You, Lord, that I might know the promise of eternal life is mine to inherit through faith in You, in that You rose on the third day, and will raise me up to be with You on the last.

 Blessed be the Name of the Lord.

 Amen

 

 

Devotional 11: Job 2:9 Curse God and Die

Devotional 11: Curse God and Die

 

So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord, and struck Job with painful boils from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head. And he took for himself a potsherd with which to scrape himself while he sat in the midst of the ashes.

Then his wife said to him, “Do you still hold fast to your integrity? Curse God and die!”

10 But he said to her, “You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips.

 

   Job was the target of Satan’s attack to get him to do that which his wife told him to do, but Job, though he endured the attack, would not do it.

But consider the words of his wife; they are so often dismissed, and she’s preached as one who added to his burden, in before his three friends came and began rebuking him.

As Chuck Swindoll once preached on this, I had to agree: she too, lost her children, and her position among the women of Israel.

She too, became a target of Satan’s destruction of their lives.

Job did not suffer alone, though he suffered the brunt of it.

Their enemies probably spoke of them in laughter, to see Job brought low, and the women of Israel who were jealous of his wife doubtless ridiculed her to her face.

We are not told much, because Job and his integrity are the focus of the book, but we shouldn’t be so quick to see the wife as a nag or a burden.

I’ve also heard it preached that Job called his wife foolish, but he did not; he said she speaks as one of the foolish.

He doesn’t strike me as the kind of man who’d marry a foolish woman, given that in his absence she had to deal with the daily matters of issues that accompanied his wealth, as well as raise their many children, and keep track of it all.

While it may be true she didn’t have Job’s integrity, can we truly blame for her falling into despair? She couldn’t lay eyes on her suffering husband, all of their children had been taken in a single stroke, and all of their wealth in the same manner.

Who, not having Job’s integrity, wouldn’t have a broken spirit? We have the book’s outcome and the gift of historical hindsight, but in the moment, in her position, ask yourself honestly, might you have said the same?

In a crucial time, when they should have been pulling together, he sat outside scraping himself, and left her to grieve alone, and he could have ministered to her and soothed her heart as best he could.

Had Job cursed God and died, she would have soon followed, having no hope.

But he actually did something better, because he had the integrity that he did: he strengthened her faith.

As she saw him endure day after day, he probably set an example before her, just as Abraham believed the promise of God when Sarah laughed.

If the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the believing husband, then Job’s most extreme testament of faith, “Though He slay me, yet will I trust in Him,” had to make a profound impact on her, and imparted to her a stronger and higher faith in the Lord.

As the Father returned a double portion Job, he returned one to her as well, because Job, as her husband, was her covering, just as he had to pray for his friends in order to keep God’s chastising hand from them for rebuking their friend in his hour of need .

Therefore I pray:

Lord, when I fall, impart to me Your declaration of faith in me, and Your wisdom to guide me through the trial.

   Restore me to You by the Power of holy, refining fire, and purge my impurities.

   Make of me your best example, in all things, at all times.

   By the Power of the Name of my King and Savior, Jesus Christ, I ask it, knowing full well what You may do; I only ask that You be with me in it, and let me not lose sight of You, not lose the sense of Your presence, that I may know that You are there, for I don’t have Job’s integrity, and my faith is as the tide, strong at times, weak at others.

   Lord, I don’t ask for a double portion, I only ask that You not let me die, before I’ve completed the assignment You’ve called me to do, old and full of days.

   Amen.  

Devotional 9: Lord, to Whom Shall We Go? (John 6:68)

68 But Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.

Often throughout His ministry, to His disciples, as well as all the crowds, and even to the religious leaders, Jesus’ conviction and confirmation of his mission and purpose never wavered: to speak words of life concerning the Father’s will for, and through, the work of the Son, by the anointing power of the Holy Spirit.

These phrases we hear repeated: “I tell you the truth…” “Assuredly, I say to you…” and “Let no one…”

In Acts 4:12, Peter tells the Sanhedrin “…there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

This confirms Jesus’ earlier statement, recorded for us in John 14:6: I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man comes to the Father, but by Me.”

If the road that leads to life, leads into the Kingdom of God, is indeed narrow with few travelers,  I will follow the Light of the World who speaks the Truth, who has the words of eternal life.

Therefore I pray:

Lord Jesus, I thank You for not giving up on this rebellious prodigal, the one who daily makes Your sacrifice a common thing through willful sin.

My fear of your holy, righteous wrath is dulled, for I take for granted Your forgiveness; understanding that I had it even as I was in the act, the Spirit is grieved, Your heart is broken, and the Father turns away, for he can’t abide to look on it.

I hear Your voice, Lord, when I walk down the wide path to destruction that spans the chasm of the demons and fires of hell. They whisper my name with sultry voices, and pull at me with soft touches, they cover their malevolent intentions with eyes of innocent beauty, with eyes that feign interest, with adoring looks as they anticipate ripping my sould from me in triumph when I’m cast into the outer darkness.

And so I return, Lord, asking You to make me a hired hand, for I too am not worthy of the sonship, of fellowship with You.

How can You be closer than a brother and stand the smell of the piggish sin upon me?

I don’t know, really, why You continue to pursue me, but on the day that I don’t find You behind me, I will know that I am irretrievably lost, and there will be weeping…

Don’t let the enemy snatch me from Your healing hands.

Embrace me, O Lord, that I may feel Your heart, and take away my sins, the public and the secret.

And thank You, for guiding me to the next step on the narrow path, closer to glory, closer to You, closer to the Father, to dwell now and forevermore in Your House.

By the Power of Your holy Blood I ask, believing I have already received.

Amen.