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INSIDE THE INNER CHAMBER OF WORSHIP A 30-DAY WORSHIP JOURNAL & PRAYER WORKBOOK

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Dr. V.Williams- Cook


WORSHIP

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Especially For

From

Date

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© 2018 ®All Rights Reserved REBIRTH PUBLICATIONS Florence, SC 29501 2007, 2009, 2013, 2015 4th Edition

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This Devotional is dedicated in loving memory of My Grandparents: Rev. & Mrs. Paul Williams Mr. & Mrs. David DeLaney, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Robert McCrea, Sr. Beloved Vocal Instructor

Ms. Marsha L. Henderson Acknowledgements: My Beloved James E. Cook (I’m still happy I married you!!)

My Children Brandon Alexander (Way to go Doc!!) Charles III and Gabriel Michael-Kristopher (My Sons of Thunder)

My Parents Michael & Sadie Dias And Robert McCrea, Jr.

My Big-Little Brother Joel Alexander Williams

My Spiritual Mother Elder Kay WG Colleton, Pastor & Overseer Manna Life Center And Apostolic Father His Eminence Bishop Lance R. Jeter (Thank you for guiding me into my DESTINY!!) Sr. Pastor of Perfecting Lives Tabernacle S.O.P.

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From the Companion CD Inside the Inner Chamber of Worship

With My Whole Heart O Lord, excellent is your name I lift up my hands to Thee, In all the earth To You this day I give you praise With my whole heart, I give You all praise, With my whole heart, You I’ll worship always, With my whole heart, I will remain, Faithful and true, for the rest of my days By ® Necol

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Inside the Inner Chamber of Worship Inside the Inner Chamber of Worship INTRODUCTION I am a worshipper. I am also a prayer warrior. Though I’ve always been a worshipper, I wasn’t always a prayer warrior. Though I had no difficulty in my worship of the Almighty God, our Father; I didn’t always have a prayer life. I had difficulty setting aside time for prayer. I didn’t always pray before I opened my mouth in song. Although, I believe in continuous prayer, in all circumstances and situations, I didn’t have an established routine of prayer. Growing up, I watched my grandmother as she would labor in prayer, how she would prayer until the Spirit of the Lord would overtake her and encapsulate her; I watched as she would prostrate herself 8


before the Lord and sometimes it would sound as if “the angels” had joined her in her worship and prayer time. The flood of emotion, the flood of sound, the flood power that would bring her to a place of pure, unadulterated presence of God himself just filling the room. I learned then, how to enter the presence of God and that it would require clean hands and pure heart. And though I could naturally bring others to that place of worship and praise, it was not an easy task to do so, and most certainly not always a pleasant task. I wear a mantle of prophetic worship, and the gift of healing. There are times however, when even I can’t enter the presence of God. For whatever reason, there are times when it is difficult for me to push and press pass what is frustrating or making worship difficult. The purpose o this journal and workbook is to help you to do just that. To Press in His presence, to push pass the obstacles, hindrances, and blocks that come to stop your worship. Together we will overcome fears, and challenges to unlock the hidden and mysterious place in God’s presence that can only be accessed through prayer. Each day is a Scripture, reflection, and prayer. Thee is also an area for you to record your reflection, prayers, instructions from the Lord, ideas, etc. At the end of the next 30 days you will be able to assess your growth and the shift in your mindset as you go deeper into the presence of the Lord. To proceed into the chamber of God, The Most Holy Place, many things must occur. We must first recognize whose presence we are seeking. It is in the presence of the Lord where transformation takes place (Exodus 3:20). It is in His presence where we find fullness of joy forevermore. It is in the presence of the Lord where liberty reigns. It is there that we experience a love beyond that of human comprehension. The presence of the Lord pulls us outside of ourselves, for God is a Spirit and they that worship Him, must worship Him in Spirit and in truth (John 4:24). How do we get there? How do we get to a place where we are no longer acquaintances with God; but now God calls us His “friend”? We must first spend time with Him. We must get to know Him. We must shed the excess weights that preoccupy our minds and spirits, keeping us distracted. We must change our focus from the cares of everyday life, so that instead of being led away from God, we are now drawn into His glorious presence more. This is the result of taking the time to seek Him.

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In 1996 I moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma to begin my graduate studies at Oral Roberts University. It was January and snow covered the ground. That year a terrible snow storm hit Midwestern and parts of the mid to northeastern United State cities as well. Lewis Street runs in front of the campus, which sits in the middle of the city. At that entrance of the campus stands a pair of bronze praying hands. These hands stand high above the trees. They stand about 60 feet upon a 6-foot squared pewter base. This area of the campus was called the “Avenue of Flags”, because at that time flags from 50 world countries stood along the paths surrounding the praying hands. There were three paths, one along each side and one in the front leading up to the hands. Vibrant lampposts lit the walkways twenty-four hours a day, by perpetual candlelight. This was a spot where students gathered at any time to pray. It was a quiet place, and often you could find one or maybe two, or even a group of students there praying. I can remember this as if it were yesterday, standing in front of these hands one Monday night around 7pm. I was angry and hurt. For the first time in my life I was fearful. I was so disappointed and felt completely alone. How does one feel alone in a place like this? One would think that this would be a very comforting place. That night however, wasn’t so comforting; it was a scary place. I was in a state of confusion, and my mind had begun playing tricks on me. You know, oe minute happy, then next minute sad, amid a flood of other emotions. I suddenly became overwhelmingly homesick. My apartment was across the street from the campus behind the Doubletree Hotel, and Wal-Mart (where I worked). So, I didn’t have very far to walk. As I stood there, a classmate and ministry colleague came from around the other side of the hands. I had just begun to walk away when Lisa approached me. She stopped me dead in my tracks, “I saw you over here Vanessa, and I knew I had to come to you. I wasn’t going to, but there was a stirring in my spirit to talk to you tonight. You are not alone. I have been feeling the same way.” Lisa came from Breakthrough Church in Columbus, Ohio where her pastor was Rod Parsley. She stood about 5’11”, was very fair skinned with long jet black, curly hair. She was beautiful, but more importantly, this was a powerful woman of God. Lisa was a Levite—a PRAYER WARRIOR!!! Hell didn’t have a chance with this “sista” on her knees. She said to me, “Vanessa, I consider this to be my desert experience. I have been feeling lonely and feeling like everything has dried up.” I said to her, “I know that the Lord told me to come, but I feel like the Holy 10


Spirit has just dropped me off and kept going. I feel so abandoned” Here I am pouring my heart out and Lisa starts laughing. Now I’m furious, because there was NOTHING FUNNY! And this chic is standing here laughing in my face. Anyway… She must have seen the look on my face, because she then reached out and gave me the biggest hug I’d had in weeks. She then said to me, “But Vanessa, you are not alone. I asked that very same question yesterday, and the Lord reassured me by reminding me that Moses, David, Elijah, and even Jesus experienced the same thing. Moses was in the desert, David was on the run from Saul, Elijah was on the run from Jezebel, and Jesus was in Gethsemane. God promised you that He would never leave you nor forsake you. Whatever the circumstances may be surrounding your situation, know that God has not left you alone. That, you can count on.” I knew that, after all I was a preacher’s kid. I knew and could do church in my sleep; but hearing those words at that moment was like medicine to my spirit.

You see, we must understand that in order to go inside the inner chamber of worship, a sacrifice is required. Let’s look at Exodus 27-29 as it talks to us about the Altar of Burnt Offering. Aaron was a high priest appointed by Moses per God’s instructions. Upon building the tabernacle, there were instructions given pertaining to the priests’ garments. There were also instructions given on sacrificial offerings. In Exodus 29:14 this offering is called the sin offering. It is this offering for which the priest enters the Holy of Holies (chapter 28:35). “Aaron shall wear the robe when he ministers, and its sound shall be heard when he goes [alone] into the Holy of Holies before the Lord and when he comes out, lest he dies there.” It was imperative that the priest be of noble character. He must be clean and in right standing with God before entering the rest of God. For when it came time to offer up the sacrifice for the sins of the people, the priest, too must be included. In verse 43, Moses said, “And they (all of the pieces of the priestly garments as instructed by God) shall be on Aaron and his sons when they go into the Tent of Meeting or when they come near to the altar to minister in the Holy Place, lest they bring iniquity upon themselves and die.” All of this meant that if the priest himself was out of order or unclean upon entering the Most Holy Place of God, he would die in the presence of the Most High God. 11


In the New Testament, it is the sacrifice of the Son, Jesus that enables us to come before the Father for ourselves; as it is written according to Hebrews 4:16, “Let us then fearlessly, and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God’s unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [ for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it.]” (Amplified Bible) Therefore, let us be zealous and exert ourselves and strive diligently to enter that rest [of God, to know and experience it for ourselves], that no one may fall or perish by the same kind of belief and disobedience [into which those in the wilderness fell.] Hebrews 4:11.

Inside the Inner Chamber of Worship PREFACE

In Matthew 23:26 Jesus is addressing the Scribes and Pharisees. In that day the scribes were the students, writers of the law; and the Pharisees were the makers and teachers of the law. Yet they themselves were not followers of the same law they were enforcing upon the people. They were a prime example of those who preached a gospel they didn’t live. We find Jesus in verse 25 warning them. “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you clean the outside of the cup and of the plate, but within they are full of extortion (prey, spoil, plunder) and grasping self-indulgence.” (Amplified) Here he refers to them as “Blind Guides.” My grandmother has a saying: “the blind can’t lead the blind.” Jesus tells them in verse 26 to “First clean the inside of the cup and of the plate so that the outside may be clean also.” One songwriter wrote ‘somethin’ on the inside working on the outside, brought about a change in my life.’ We must remember that change occurs from the inside, and that outside appearances can be deceiving. It can camouflage the emptiness, the pain, and the struggles inside. When those voids in our lives go unfulfilled, we sometimes begin searching for fulfillment in other places and in other people. We must surrender all of this to the savior. It is written in Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and 12


refresh your souls.] Take my yoke upon you and learn of me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble lowly in heart and you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls. For my yoke is wholesome (useful, good-not harsh, hard, sharp or pressing but comfortable, gracious and pleasant), and my burden is light and easy to be borne.” (Amplified) Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 1:3, 4, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of sympathy (pity and mercy) and the God [who is our Source] of every comfort (consolation and encouragement). Who comforts (consoles and encourages) us in every trouble (calamity and affliction, so that we may also be able to comfort, (console and encourage) those who are in any kind of trouble or distress, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” Therefore, we should never feel (although we do) that we need to clothe ourselves to cover up our insecurities. Our best beauty is inner beauty, which for some is innate and for others acquired. Whatever the case, we all strive to become more like our Father in heaven, and to do so, we would have to spend time with him Inside the Inner Chamber of Worship. In John 7:38, Jesus addresses the crowd saying, “He who believes in Me [who cleaves to and trusts in and relies on Me] as the Scriptures have said, from his innermost being shall flow [continually] springs and rivers of living water.” Paul comes back in 2 Corinthians 4:6 and says, “For God Who said, let light shine out of darkness, has shone in our hearts so [to beam forth] the light for the illuminations of the knowledge of the majesty and glory of God [as it is manifest in the Person and is revealed] in the face of Jesus Christ (the Messiah).” David says it this way in the 139th Psalm; verse 13 “For you did form my inward parts; You did knit me in my mother’s womb.” I know you’re asking “What does all of this mean Vanessa? When I hear the word “inner” my first thought is of a hidden, secret, and sacred place within, or inside another place-like a nucleus. I think of a deeper place within another place. This location can only be accessed with a key, and not everyone has that key; not everyone has access to the person who knows it is there, and where to find it. When I look at this word, automatically my spirit is propelled to a dimension beyond my physical state. Our Scriptures takes us into that place. In the gospel of John, chapter 7 we find Jesus in the temple court during 13


the Feast of Tabernacles. Jesus arrived at this place alone after sending His disciples ahead of Himself. When He finally arrived, he went in secretly about mid-way through the feast. Jesus went into the temple court and began teaching. In verse 36, we find the people questioning, “What does this statement of His mean? You will look for me, and not be able to find me, and where I am, you cannot come?” We find Jesus on the final and most important day of the Feast, standing in the temple [porches] court, and with a very loud voice He cries, “If any man is thirsty let him come to Me and drink! He who believes in Me [who cleaves to and trusts in and relies on Me] as the Scripture has said, from his innermost being shall flow [continuously] springs and rivers of living water.” What water was Jesus talking about? Throughout the Bible water is a type and shadow of the Holy Spirit. In verse 39 John explains “But He was speaking here of the Spirit, whom those who believed (trusted, had faith) in Him were afterward to receive. For the [Holy] Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified (raised to honor). (Amplified) Once you receive the Holy Spirit, He takes up residence within you. You become His home, His chamber. When we fail to follow through with the instructions given in the Word or when we walk in disobedience to both God and our Christian leaders, we grieve Him (causing pain and discomfort). In the chamber of worship, we are purified and refined; therefore, walking in disobedience causes contamination, which makes us dysfunctional. Jesus made a promise in John 14:16, “And I will ask the Father, and He ‘will’ give you another comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, and Stand By) that He may remain with you forever.” The only way to access this Comforter is through belief in Jesus, and by completely trusting and relying on him. Then and only then - verse 38 out of our “innermost”, out of our personal “Chamber”, out of our bellies—shall the Holy Spirit flow [continuously] like springs (gushers) and rivers of water. King David writes in the 139th Psalm “For you did form my inward parts; You did knit me together in my mother’s womb.” The womb is the inner chamber where conception takes place. This is the place where our babies, our dreams, our gifts all take shape and are all brought to life. Conception is the beginning of life. Once a thing is conceived, it becomes real. At that moment it becomes a living, breathing entity. It is in worship where 14


God imparts and imputes His Spirit to bring forth a major birth. We as a people are spirit first, and to the spirit we return upon death. Now, let’s look at the word ‘chamber.’ What is a chamber? Several things may come to mind here, but the one that I would like to point out is like a closet, a bedroom, a secret place, a quiet place, a restful place, and a place of creation. The marriage chamber is the bedroom of a husband and wife. This is a place where two people who are joined together by a covenantal agreement, connect in mind, body, and spirit, becoming one flesh. The spirit of one infuses with the spirit of the other and although you see two people, you hear one voice. So, it is with the Father. When you enter the Most Holy Place, something peculiar occurs. This is a place where you become naked before the Father. You uncover and expose all of yourself, body and soul to the only wise God, our Savior. The Inner Chamber is an intimate place. Once inside the Inner Chamber of Worship, we are taken to yet another dimension in the Lord as He reveals himself and transforms our lives. In Isaiah 6, God appears to the prophet in the setting of the Jerusalem temple. The prophet describes His appearance in verse 1. “I saw the Lord sitting on a throne high and lofty; and the hem of his robe filled the temple. Seraphs were in attendance above him; each had six wings; with two they covered their faces, and with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew. And one called to another and said ‘holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the earth is full of his glory.’” God said to Moses on the mountain of Sinai in Exodus 33:20, that “No one may see my face and live,” for God is holy. He reveals himself again to John the Apostle in Revelation 4. Each time this occurs, God requires something of us, and that is simply to be in the right posture and position as we worship him in spirit and in truth. With the carnal mind, we cannot comprehend the things of God. We cannot even begin to receive the revelation of God himself, except when in the Spirit. Worship is where God meets his people. In verse 5, Isaiah says, “Woe is me! I am lost, for I am a man of unclean lips, and live among a people of unclean lips, yet my eyes have seen the King the Lord of hosts!” The Lord’s response comes in verse 7: “Now that this has touched your lips, your guilt has departed, and your sin is blotted out.” It is in the atmosphere of worship where the Lord touches us and blots out our sin. When worship is real, you come 15


out of the chamber of the Lord transformed, a new creation, and ready to respond as did Isaiah in verse 8 “Here am I; send me!” In Exodus 33:29-33, we see that when Moses came down from the mountain of God, (after having spent time in God’s presence), that his face was so radiant the people could not bear to look at him. When in the presence of God, our entire being changes; our attitude changes because we’ve spent time with the Father. God is pleased when He sees us in the outer court. It’s beautiful for a while, but God wants us to get into His presence. Let us enter the rest of God and find solace in times of sorrow, and strength in our times of weakness. Most importantly let us find ourselves bowing before the presence of an Almighty God, as He loves on us, and we love on him. The Inner Chamber is also a place where intercession is born. “The calling of the intercessor began more than 2000 years ago, when God came down in the flesh of his Son, Jesus to take the place for man, to bear, and carry the sins of the world for him. Intercession is not just standing in the gap for someone. It is to literally take the place of that person, for that thing God has impregnated you with. It is the carrying, delivering and or birthing out of a burden or burdens. An intercessor is called by God to pray the heart and will of God concerning a person, and/or thing. The life of an intercessor must be one of holiness, separation, and a consistent seeking of fellowship, with the Lord. An intercessor repairs the breach and restores the paths to dwell in.” (Isaiah 58:12) There are many operations and administrations of the Spirit when it comes to intercession. It could be one of healing, deliverance, restoration, salvation, judgment, repentance and blessing (Elder Sheryl Shaw). Another example of this is in Genesis 43:40. We find Joseph retreating to his chamber to weep before the Lord. He’d been severely hurt by those whom he loved most, his brothers; his father’s sons. Here is this mighty man of God, mighty man of stature and wisdom, retreating because his heart was sore, and he yearned for his brothers. He needed a secret place-a private place to cry, to refocus, to repent of bitterness, to repent of anger, to hear from God that he may be used by God. Inside the Inner Chamber we are restored, revitalized, refined, and reborn. We are forgiven, freed, and find favor in the Lord’ sight. 2 Corinthians 5:17 comes to life; “Therefore if any person is [engrafted] in Christ (the Messiah), he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous 16


moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come!” Now we are ready to serve and enjoy it. The chamber is also described in Isaiah 26:20. “Come, my people, enter your chamber and shut your doors behind you; hide yourselves for a little while until the Lord’s wrath is past.” Here you have a chamber of protection against the anger of God. We love to talk about the blessing of God. We love to talk about the goodness of the Lord. We love to talk about the mercies of God, which are new each morning. Although all of that is true, we forget that He too, becomes angry. If we are made in His image, then the righteous anger we express is legitimate. Anger, because sin and unrighteousness are understandable, is allowed. The Bible however, reminds us in Ephesians 4:26 “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down on your wrath.” This refers to anger between one another. But when God gets angry we (the body of Christ fitly joined together and those that have found grace [favor] in God’s eyes) are urged, are instructed to GET OUT OF THE WAY!!!!!!!!! God instructs us to build an ark (Genesis 6) or He sends a warning before destruction (Genesis 18, 19; Exodus 11, 12). He instructs us to come into the Inner Chamber for our own protection, as He told the children of Israel in Exodus 12:12, 13 God told Moses “I will pass through the land of Egypt this night and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the Lord. And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt.” Or as David writes of God’s protection in Psalm 91:1, 4, and 7 “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. Surely, he shall deliver thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but they shall not come nigh thee.” Not only protection, but even more in verses 14-16 David continues “Because he (us) hath set his love upon Me, therefore will I (God, the Almighty) deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. With long life will I satisfy him and shew him my salvation.” Hallelujah!!!!

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Even Jesus had moments of complete solitude from the cares of ministry and the constant need of the people to see a sign. He needed time to reflect, to contemplate, to refresh, and to refuel. Most times we do not take this kind of time. We fail to get into the presence of the Lord and seek Him; not for material possessions only but seeking to merely spend time with him. This should be done daily. Meditation is one of the spiritual disciplines that we should seek to do every day. This is a time when we can just rest in God. Meditation means listening to God’s Word, reflecting on God’s works, rehearsing God’s deeds, and pondering on God’s laws. We can only do this when we take the time to quiet ourselves and seek him. In the early days of the Tabernacle worship experience, only the priests could enter in the Most Holy Place-Holy of Holies (Exodus 23:33, 28:29, I Kings 6:16, 2 Chronicles 3:8). The veil was hung to separate the three phases of the worship experience: The Outer Court, the Inner Court and the Most Holy Place, that which was more critical than anything else. It was there that God solidified the sacrifice of worship, the sacrifice offered up for the sins for the people. We must therefore, search out His Word beyond its outward meaning; for those inner and higher thoughts, if we are to seek His face. To this end, He has given us an indwelling teacher ever ready to guide us into all truth (John 16:13). The Christian Worship Experience consists of several things. Being a musician and singer, I find music to be an essential ingredient to my worship experience, both corporate and private. However, what we will concentrate on here is the God we worship and the results of that worship. It has become customary worldwide for worship to be regulated to one day of the week, primarily on Sundays. Sure, there are other meetings like Bible Study, Prayer services, and rehearsals to name a few when the people of God meet. Sunday, for many Christians however, is reserved for the corporate worship experience. It is during this time that we come together to seek God’s will for the body of Christ, to hear God’s instructions for living in this world that is separated from him, a time when we gather to praise him for his mighty acts and for who He truly is in our lives. This is a time of thanksgiving and rejoicing. Whether it be Saturday, Sunday or whatever day of the week, the Sabbath day is a time as instructed by God in Exodus 20:8-11 to “[Earnestly] remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy (withdrawn from common employment and dedicated to God). Six days you shall labor and do all your work. But the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God: in it you shall not do any work, you or your son, your daughter, 18


your manservant, your maidservant, your domestic animals, or the sojourner within your gates. That is why the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it [set it apart for His purpose.]” Amplified In addition to the Sabbath, the Levitical Priesthood is comprised of those that have been “taken” by the Lord. Their ministry is to serve the tabernacle (body). They bear the burden of the tabernacle (body), to carry the body as the Holy Spirit leads. They follow the pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night. They are to bear this burden by walking on their feet, therefore becoming the feet of the tabernacle (body). They are wholly the Lord’s and as such, they are Holy. They entire tribe of Levi is Holy and consecrated to the service of God, and to the body. However, the family of Aaron is separated within the priesthood as the High Priest family with special service. Only the High Priest could enter the Most Holy Place; and on a specific day of the year. This day was celebrated as the Feast of Atonement. In Hebrew the word atonement means: to purge, cleanse, forgive, pardon, or to cover. This took a blood sacrifice, which occurred on the sixth day (day of man). This is essential for entry into the Most Holy Place of our Lord.” (Casada, The Tabernacle of Moses) Therefore, we must be purged, cleansed, and be forgiven, pardoned, and covered by the blood of the lamb from all our past and current sins. (1 John 1:8-10) Yes, all our sins, past, present, and future will be wholly removed. In place of the expunged sin, we will receive the full mind of Christ. Then we will be restored to that complete man in whom God saw that “it was very good.” What does this have to do with me, you ask? Well, if you are a true believer, it makes you a part of the Levitical priesthood. In numbers 3:6 and 9, “our Lord commanded that the entire tribe of Levi be presented before Aaron the High Priest that they may minister unto Him. They are wholly given unto Him out of the children of Israel. This High Priest ministered unto the Lord in the Most Holy Place, the Holy Place and the Court of Tabernacle. The High Priest family minister to the Court of Tabernacle (body) and to the High Priest family. They do not minister to the Holy Place of the Most Holy Place. (Casada, The Tabernacle of Moses) Why is all this important? And how does it pertain to us in the 21st century? The Word of the Lord, as it is written in Malachi 3:6, says: “For I am the Lord, I do not change; that is why you, O sons of Jacob are not consumed.” The Order of God for the believer was established in Genesis, with 19


Adam and Eve. Because of man’s disobedience in the garden, Jesus came to earth, and gave his life as a ransom for sins past, present and future; sins of omission, sins of co-mission, sins of the flesh, sins of the mind, and even spiritual idolatry. We now have access directly to the Father, because of the Blood of Jesus. This access was taken away resulting of the fall of man. The order established by God and given to Moses is not to be taken lightly. The Cross of Christ was present in the formation of the tabernacle. The order and arrangement of the tabernacle, and the tribes are synonymous with the Cross of Christ. Jesus said in John 4:22-24 “Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshipers shall worship the Father in spirit, and in truth for the Father seeketh such to worship Him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.” We cannot enter in the divine presence of God “OUT OF ORDER.” We criticize the elders because of their unique brand of worship. We criticize each other because of our customs and standards without ever considering or seeking to understand why something was ever instituted. Maybe some of these practices were not according to the “Script.” Does that make them a bad practice? Well, we the organized church, have mastered the art of performance in the Body of Christ. Anything from the waving of our hands to speaking in tongues is practiced on a steady basis. Some of our customs are unfamiliar, misunderstood, or for some even down right uncomfortable. However, if God established a thing, then who are we to change it because we don’t understand it, or are uncomfortable with it? Worship isn’t meant to be comfortable. Worship is not for the individual. Worship is unto God. Worship pulls us outside of ourselves. Worship requires selflessness. It is predicated upon the God we serve, not upon the people serving. A sacrifice unto God when all hearts and minds are clear of carnality and focused solely on the We must first recognize that is He who created us and not we ourselves (Psalm 100:3a). God’s sole purpose for creating us was and is to worship Him. This is evident in the commandments of God in Exodus 20:1-17. In verse 3 God says, “You shall have no other gods before or besides me.” In Matthew 22:37 Jesus says, “You shall love the Lord our god with all your heart, and with your soul and with all your mind (intellect).” However, for worship to be “for 20


real” we must also adhere to the second greatest commandment. “You shall love your neighbor as [you do] yourself.” Matthew 22:39 and Leviticus 19:18 “You shall not take revenge or bear any grudge against the sons of your people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord.” Yes, my brothers and sisters, we cannot hold an “ought” against one another, and worship God in Spirit and in Truth. This is the premise for Levitical Worship. Worship becomes God we serve. We cheat ourselves of the full experience of God’s presence, and the total transformation to come, by attempting to enter the rest of God with hatred, bitterness, anger, resentment, worry, frustration, and darkness of any kind in our hearts. We commit spiritual perjury and lie to the Holy Ghost when we do this. We rob God of His beauty and glory when we try to enter his presence without first repenting of these things. As I sit here writing, I am reminded of a situation that occurred one morning as I was preparing for church. Even between spouses, we must be cognizant of how we handle one another. One of the statements I made to my husband at that time was, “I am not going to, and absolutely refuse to allow you to destroy my worship experience today.” I urge you to violently pursue God in worship. Become angry enough in the spirit and disgusted enough with the devil, to go after God with all your heart, soul, and mind; and watch what happens. Following in the Devotional, are a set of Scriptures for the next 30 days, to get you started each morning. As you take each Scripture, propose in your heart and settle it in your mind, that like Joshua, “we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:15) As Levitical priests, we serve the Body of Christ daily. It would be foolish to not enter the rest of God and have him change us in the process; so, we become more like Jesus. Why not allow HIM to transform us for his service that our worship experience, that our time with him both corporately and privately, can become real”? See you,

Inside the Inner Chamber of Worship

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The Outer Court How we enter worship is very important. Here, in the Outer Court, we shed ourselves of the weights that have separated us from God. Here is where cleansing, purging, and purifying takes place. The first thing we approach is the “fence”, constructed of white linen standing on rods hung between sixty posts supported by bronze (judgment) sockets and linked together by connecting rods called “fillets” made of silver (redemption). The white linen represents the righteousness of Christ, which we obtain through Him when we believe in Him and accept the sacrifice He made on the cross. We become clothed in righteousness and are then allowed to approach the presence of God without fear of judgment. We cannot go very far into the structure until we are enveloped in the white linen, for we cannot go beyond the cross into the presence of God, without accepting the sacrifice of the cross. (Casada, The Tabernacle of Moses p.3)

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Righteousness Day 1 2 Corinthians 5:21 Genesis 3:22 Romans 8:1 “God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” (NIV) WE think of righteousness as absolute perfection. To be righteous is to be in right standing, walking uprightly before the Lord. To do that, we must first acknowledge the need for change in our everyday lives. To be righteous does not mean that no sin, or that no infraction has ever taken place. It also, however, is not a license to condemn a brother in a fault. Being righteous means that sin has met its expected end. It has ceased to exist in our lives. 2 Corinthians 5:21 makes it clear that this was not and is not something that can be accomplished on our own. “For our sake He made Him to be sin, who knew no sin, so that in Him, we might become the righteousness of God.” This simply means to take on the likeness and the attributes of our Father. Make today a day of reflection and hold fast to the newness of life granted to you through salvation in Christ. Remember Romans 8:1 “Therefore, [there is] now no condemnation (no adjudging guilty of wrong) for those who are in Christ Jesus, who live [and] walk not after the dictates of the flesh, but after the dictates of the Spirit. [John 3:18] Repent, get up, and get busy about our Father’s business. You have a fresh start, a new beginning-purpose that today I am the righteousness of God. PRAYER: Father, help me today to become more like You. Help me to take on Your likeness and You attributes that I may serve You in the newness of life granted to me through salvation in Your son, Jesus. Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________

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Day 2 2 Corinthians 6:16b-18 Leviticus 26:12; Isaiah 52:11 “For we are the Temple of the living God.” As God has said, “I will live with them and walk among them and I will be their God, and they will be my people.” Therefore, come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you.” I will be a Father to you and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” (NIV) There is a mandate of the Body of Christ to be separate and holy unto a Holy God. How is this possible? What does it mean to be holy? When I was growing up in a small town outside of Charleston, SC it was often said that the holy people wore certain types of clothing. They stayed in church too long. They had a certain look. Everyone knew when they saw certain people, what church they were affiliated with. As I grew in the Lord, I began to understand that holiness isn’t about not wearing pants, or makeup. It is not the church we attend or the way we look. When we begin to take on God’s attributes, our look does not change. Our behavior changes and so does our attitude. Holiness is a lifestyle which we submit unto as we are cleansed and purified by God and to live unto God. It doesn’t mean that women must wear hats or little prayer caps always. It doesn’t mean that we go to church from 9 to 5 on Sundays. It doesn’t even mean that we cannot go out in public, or that we can’t go the movies, family functions and class reunions. It doesn’t mean that we must ban all secular music. To be a holy vessel unto God means that we are now set aside for God’s use and God’s use alone. Holiness is not something that we put on or take off. It is a means by which we choose to live that separates us from the world. Living holy is a means by which God has pulled us out of the realm of darkness and the marvelous light of His love. Yes, there are things we no longer do, things we begin to lose an appetite for, and some things or even behaviors that are now intolerable, because once we submit to God in every area of life, He cleanses us of those things that could prove hazardous to our spiritual growth and to our witness. Therefore, becoming a holy vessel requires the shedding away of that which could pull us out of place and fellowship with God. PRAYER: Father, today my prayer is that You make me into a vessel of love set aside for your purpose. Make me holy before You, so that my worship may be received as an expression of love, in Jesus name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 25


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Day 3 2 Corinthians 7:1 Mark 7:14-23; Ezekiel 20:34, 41 “Since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.” My first Daniel fast was exciting for me. Fruits, vegetables, water- NO MEAT? Nah. For me that was a major accomplishment. I am a high-end carnivore. Not eating meat was difficult. How many vegetables can you eat for breakfast; come on? But, for 21 days straight I did it. At the end of that 21 days I’d dropped a couple of pounds, my hair was shiny, and my skin and nails were beautiful. I even felt better physically. That’s what shedding yourself of the excess will do. As it is in the natural, so it is in the spirit. When we have a daily dose of God’s Word, a daily dose of WORSHIP, a daily dose of PRAISE and THANKSGIVING, our lives take on a tremendous change. WE wake up in our right mind and not on the wrong side of the bed. We treat our families and neighbors, even ourselves better. When you make God an active partner in this game of life, it’s no longer a chance, but a gift. Living holy simply sheds us of the things that contaminate our spirit. Purging ourselves is a process that is never ending. However, it becomes less painful as we grow closer to God. It is for this very reason that I don’t watch certain TV shows, or listen certain types of music, or even listen to some preachers, or eat certain foods (which I know will cause me difficulty), or even drink certain things. In Mark 7:2123 Jesus teaches ‘That which comes out of the man that defiles the man.” If we fill ourselves with Him, He will come out. Fill ourselves with junk, and junk will come out. Guard your temple. There are conditions of heart that can only be fixed through deliverance, those things being purged out of us. DETOX your spirit today of those things that have cluttered and contaminated it. Purpose it today, to shed yourself of the excess baggage—those things that exalt themselves against the knowledge of God. Evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, envying, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness, corrupt conversations, all these are heart conditions that must be dealt with. Make up your mind today, that “I will not be a contaminated house with a contaminated anointing.” PRAYER: Father, today, show me how to purge myself of the things that have weighed me down. Whatever they may be, cause a shift to take place in my spirit that will automatically cause these things to become too much to bear, too much to carry any longer. Cause them to begin to just fall off, never to return. Help me to never look back and retrieve them. Anything that is causing separation from You, remove it now in the name of Jesus, and make me a vessel, fit for your service. Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________

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Day 4 2 Corinthians 12:9; Luke 1:37 Jeremiah 31:3-4 “But He said to me, ‘My grace (my favor, and loving kindness and mercy) is enough for you [sufficient against any danger and enables you to bear the trouble manfully]; for my strength and power are made perfect (fulfilled and completed) and show themselves most effective in [your] weakness.” Scholars, historians, and theologians alike have all taken a shot at trying to figure out what the Apostle Paul’s “thorn in the flesh” was. I conclude that the affliction, whatever it may have been was not the important issue. The issue, however, was that the thorn was and is representative of the afflictions of the righteous, that often crosses the paths of many who have been a part of the Christian faith for any number of years and have experienced any number of things. You and I may never encounter some of the afflictions that come with belonging to the Body of Christ, as did the early Christians who were put in jail, stoned, hung, dislocated, and many more killed for confessing and proclaiming Christ. But know this: no matter what we go through in life, God Himself will always provide Himself as a lamb. He will always see to it that no need goes unmet, that no godly desire ever goes unebbed. We must fix our eyes on Him. For He can do exceedingly, abundantly above all that we may ever ask or think; according to the power that’s at work on the inside of us. We may never be shipwrecked on a deserted island or may never be out in a remote village that under siege by terrorists because we bear the name Christian, such as those in Indonesia. We may never fall into the hands of an evil Emperor like Nero but know that God is with you through all your tough times and when it feels like you’re all alone. Yes, His grace abounds in all things. His grace and His mercy will always go forth in the earth, ahead of you and behind you, to assure you as His child, that our ever present, all-knowing, all powerful, everlasting and almighty Father is always there in our times of need, sorrow, discomfort, grief, pain, and brokenness. He has given us His Word to reassure us of His constant involvement in our lives and in our everyday trivial matters as well. We must understand that for us to receive a powerful release of God’s spirit in our own lives and in the world around us, we must first come to the revelation of Luke 1:37, “For with God nothing is impossible and no word from God shall be without power or impossible of fulfillment.” (AMP) Call on Him today while He is still near. PRAYER: Father in the name of Jesus, help us to know that You are our ever-present help in the times of trial and in the times of triumph. Help us to know and recognize that all things are possible with You and that You will see to it that every need and every desire in our lives is met if we are focused on You. In Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 29


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Day 5 1 Peter 1:3, 4 John 14:1-3; 1 Peter 1:13-22 “By His boundless mercy we have been born again to an ever-living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. [Born anew] into an inheritance which is beyond the reach of change and decay [imperishable], unsullied and unfading, reserved in heaven for you.” Did you know that God has something especially designed and set-up for you? And it is stored up, reserved in heaven. What exactly does inheritance mean? In the natural sense of the word, we understand that an inheritance is something set aside, with your name assigned to it. Usually you only receive this inheritance when a loved one (parent or close relative) dies and has designated such to you by a last will and testament. Well, it is also such in the Body of Christ. It is by the death and resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ that we have come into this inheritance. Those of us that have accepted Jesus as Lord of our lives (ruler over all aspects of our lives) and Savior (redeemer from our sins), have been born anew (all over again) into this inheritance that comes only by way of salvation in Christ Jesus. It is by his boundless mercy (favor without boundaries), no strings attached, that we are now heirs of the Father to something that is greater than we can comprehend. It is flawless, unchanging and immortal (cannot be destroyed) and is set aside, designed and designated for each of us. So be not afraid and do not worry, for the Lord Himself has provided for you an eternal blessing greater than anything this world could ever offer. PRAYER: Father, today I rejoice giving You thanks for the blessings You have not only given already, but for that inheritance You have reserved in heaven for me. I thank You for giving Your Son Jesus, on the cross for my sins. I thank You for the gift of life and an opportunity through the resurrection of Your Son Jesus Christ from the dead to experience Your boundless mercies and ever living hope that assures me of Your imperishable blessings. Thank You today in Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 31


_________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ Day 6 1 Peter 2:1-12; Romans 12:1 Beloved, I implore you as alien and strangers and exiles [in the world] to abstain from the sensual urges (the evil desires, the passions of the flesh, your lower nature) that wage war against the soul. Conduct yourselves 32


properly (honorably, righteously) among the Gentiles so that, although they may slander you as evildoers, [yet] they may be witnessing your good deed [come to] glorify God in the day of inspection [when God shall look upon you wanderers as a pastor or shepherd looks over his flock.] It is imperative that we as the Body of Christ realize that we are strangers in this land where evil persists. God has very high standards for us and we shouldn’t accept or expect anything lower for ourselves. Christianity is not a rigid set of do’s and don’ts. IT is simply a lifestyle of holiness. God is an excellent God. We should serve Him in excellence! He is a faithful God and we should serve Him faithfully! Faithfulness is not the same as dutifulness. He is a Holy God and we should live our lives as unto Him and in service to Him. God requires abstinence! Here we specifically speak of abstinence from all the things that take us outside and away from Him, outside the realm of His promises. The people around us should be able to witness our good deeds because they are a part of who we are, not just because it’s something we do. Our own personal battles are intense enough without the added pressures of external issues from the world we live in. To be overtaken in a fault can become an everyday occurrence, but it can be overcome. We should maintain distance always and be separated from anything that has the power to make us act out of character and act out of order. We should refrain from people that are negative and those that breed confusion. Let us take the sincere and wise advice of Paul from Romans 12:1, “I appeal to you therefore, brethren, and beg of you in view of [all] the mercies of God, to make a decisive dedication of your bodies [presenting all your members and faculties] as a living sacrifice, holy (devoted, consecrated) and well pleasing to God, which is your reasonable (rational, intelligent) service and spiritual worship.” As we submit to God, He enables us to submit to leadership. Holy leadership will enable you to live a life that is pleasing to God, and though people may slander or call your character into question, your good deeds in the earth will bring glory unto God and He will vindicate you. PRAYER: Lord, today I ask that You help me to always present myself unto You as a holy and consecrated vessel for Your service. I ask that You accept this as my sacrifice unto You. Help me, Holy Spirit, each day to guard myself against the wiles of the enemy and to preserve myself for Kingdom Business. Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________

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Pride is a peculiar thing. Although being proud of your accomplishments is not a bad thing, it can cause you to sometimes think you are greater than others. When pride causes us to look down on others or causes us to think more of ourselves than we should, or even sometimes keeps us from doing certain things, such as asking for help, it becomes a problem in the spirit. Here, Peter says in verse 6 “Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, and HE will exalt us in due time.” Our struggle is that we don’t know how to do this. Some of us want to tell God what to do, while others are so arrogant that they don’t look to God for answers or instructions at all. They don’t seek His counsel. They operate “half-cocked’, or “haphazardly.” Jesus had more cause than any to behave with an attitude of superiority. Instead, He chose to humble Himself. He became a man so that He may reconcile us back unto the Father. God gave us a warning about being prideful in Proverbs 16:18 “Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.” How can we be of service to the Kingdom when we think we are so great? This is what caused Lucifer to be cast from heaven. We were created in the image and likeness of a great God therefore, we are great. It is when that greatness leads us to think that we don’t need God, or one another, that we are at our weakest and our worst. We must be careful not to become so puffed up because of degrees, money, position, and power that we forget that it is He who gave us the power to obtain wealth (Deuteronomy 8:18). Remember that He, God Himself, will exalt us in due season if we remain faithful, obedient and most of all humble in His sight, and not in accordance with our own standards, taking David’s advice in the 100th Psalm, verse 3 “Know ye that the Lord He is God: it is He who has made us and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.” PRAYER: Dear Lord, I ask on this day that You keep me humble in your sight. In all things help me to remember that it is You who blessed me with knowledge, skills and abilities to do what You have assigned to my charge. Help me never to see myself as greater than those around me, but to always see my brothers and sisters as better than myself. Help me to be humble that I may serve You, so that my worship will be as a sweet fragrance unto You. Amen PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 35


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Bear (endure, carry) one another’s burdens and troublesome moral faults, and in this way, fulfill and observe perfectly the law of Christ (the Messiah) and complete what is lacking [in your obedience to it.] I have two friends that are total opposites. She is a very sweet and loving spirit. He on the other hand, is abrasive and just down-right mean most times. Thank the Lord, they aren’t married. Well he began criticizing her because he discovered an indiscretion. Instead of going to her, he came to me, making it his point to reveal this indiscretion. He thought his information would make me choose sides and see him with this halo glowing around his head. He really wanted me to know about this and began to verbally bash her. They both had been saved and were attending the same church regularly. However, once he saw that I was not interested in this revealed and discovered information, and even more appalled by how he discovered it, he began to criticize me; as well as accusing me of the same indiscretion and saying I was trying to cover it up, and that I was in denial. What my dear friend failed to realize is that God admonishes those of us that are “spiritual” through the Apostle Paul in Galatians 6:1 and 2 to restore our brothers and sisters in meekness, considering ourselves. He further compels us to bear one another’s burdens. This is far from covering up the sins of our brothers and sisters. Real love requires that we continue to love one another despite the sin. The Scripture records in 1 Peter 4:8 “Above all things, have intense and unfailing love for one another, for love covers a multitude of sins [forgives and disregards the offenses of others.] Where this kind brother made his mistake is in coming to me instead of going to my other good friend. Restoration would have been accomplished because of the love between friends. Also, if the entire truth was not going to be revealed to include how he discovered the indiscretion, there was no need to tell any of it. The whole truth and nothing but the truth should be first and foremost. Since then, he still has not confronted her with his discovery. Whatever the accuser was trying to accomplish failed; in my eye, that friend, will always be innocent of the accusation. God has a way of handling situations and people, regardless of how we handle each other. PRAYER: Father, today I thank You for this gift of love. For You are love, and your commandment is for us to love our neighbors as ourselves. It is by this love that the world recognizes that we are your children. Help us to always remember that, and to act on it. Help us to bear one another’s burdens and to rely on your spirit to lead us into restoration and repentance. Help us to love at all costs in Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 37


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“Even so, every healthy (sound) tree bears good fruit [worth of admiration], but the sickly (decaying worthless) tree bears bad (worthless) fruit.” The basic command given to our great-grandparents Adam and Eve, in the Garden of Eden, was to be fruitful. How can you not be fruitful in a garden filled with fruit? God requires the same thing of us in Galatians 5:22-26; to be filled with His Spirit means to be bearers of the Fruit of the Spirit. We can only do this when we have fully submitted to the leading of the Holy Spirit in our lives. The Fruit of the Spirit should begin to come alive in us as we study His written word, as we spend time with Him and begin practical applications of His Word in our daily lives. When I think of fruit, I think of something that grows from an attached source of nutrients, vitamins and minerals-another life source-just as a baby grows from an embryo to a fetus while in the mother’s womb. Everything that is needed for the survival of the fetus comes from the mother. We look at our children and refer to them as fruit, such as ‘the apple of my eye’, especially when their behavior is a direct reminder of us as children. I look at my two babies, ages 2 and 1, and am often reminded by my mother that they are an exact replica of me at that age. How quickly we forget and are as quickly reminded when we see them. God looks at us in much the same manner. He wants us to be more like His Son Jesus. He looks and expects for us to produce good seeds. He has placed within us all the attributes we need to reproduce well-nourished offspring. Paul addresses this in Galatians 5 beginning with verse 22 “But the fruit of the [Holy] Spirit [the work which His presence within accomplishes] is love, joy (gladness), peace, patience (an even temper, forbearance), kindness, goodness (benevolence), faithfulness, gentleness (meekness, humility), self-control (self-restraint, continence). Against such there is no law [that can bring a charge.] {If by the Holy Spirit we have our life in God, let us go forward walking in line, our conduct controlled by the Spirit.]

PRAYER: Dear Lord, today I ask Thee, to make me a bearer of good fruit and not a bearer of worthless fruit. I ask of Thee today that You allow your Holy Spirit to produce its fruit unto righteousness in my life, each day. Help me to always walk in your Spirit, and I endeavor to live by your Spirit. Help me this day I pray. Amen PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 39


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“The tribe of Levi was sanctified and set apart for the work of the ministry—offering up the sacrifices and caring for the furniture of the tabernacle—pitched their tents all around the fence between the curtains and the tents of the people. They served God continually every day, offering sacrifices and worship to God, and therefore, they lived closest to Him. Also, by surrounding the entire structure, they afforded Israel, additional protection from the Glory which resided in the Most Holy Place.” (Casada, The Tabernacle of Moses pg. 3)

The Inner Court The Inner Court, also called the Holy Place, is a direct representation of the Body of Christ. We enter the Holy Place through the Gate. Entry into the deeper things of God is only possible when we first have accepted the sacrificial work at the Brazen Altar/Cross and submitted to the cleansing at the Laver/Word. The cross leads us to a desire for the revelation of the mysteries of the new covenant and we begin searching the Scripture looking for Him. We could stay at the Laver, however, learn the letter of the Word, read and study about the Kingdom, but never come to an experiential encounter with the Living God. For that, we must decide to go beyond the Outer Court and move into the hidden place, that sheltered area under the covering of His Wings. It’s a heart choice. Will we pursue Him further? We have entered the first eastern gate and encountered the altar and laver, what mysteries lay beyond the Gate of His tabernacle? (Casada, The Tabernacle of Moses, pg. 6) 41


Relationship & Purpose Day 11 Ephesians 4:1, 2 “A prisoner for the Lord, then I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another.” (NIV) I look at this Scripture and the words seem to just jump right off the page for me. The entire fourth chapter is filled with simple blueprint instructions on how we are to carry ourselves as citizens of the Kingdom. We often think that living a holy life is a set of rigid do’s and don’ts. However, what we fail to come to grips with is the joy of living a holy life. The freedoms that God affords us as his children are tremendous. That doesn’t mean that in life there won’t be any trials and crosses. Quite the contrary: this Christian walk is filled with upheaval. There is always something facing you to knock you off track, and to shift your focus from our purpose. Nevertheless, through it all, when we remain true to God and live a life worthy of the calling we have received, not only does God get all the glory, but we also reap the rewards both in this life and in the life to come. We often think that this chapter is one reserved for those called to the five-fold ministry gifts. Once again, Paul is showing us that we are called to live a life worthy of the anointing placed upon us and inside of us by God himself. The church was given the 5 ministry gifts of the Apostle, Prophet, Evangelist, Pastor and Teacher to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up. The work of ministry however, doesn’t stop with the Five-Fold ministry gifts. Whatever area of ministry you are called to serve in, you must be anointed for it. First and foremost, our instructions are simple. WE are to be completely (no half-and-half) humble and gentle. Those words again?! Yes, filled with grace and truth, kindhearted, caring and deeply moved with compassion; 42


not brawling and ready to throw a punch at the slightest impulse. We are to be patient. In Lamentations, it is written in chapter 3 and verse 26, “It is good to wait patiently for the Lord to save us.” We like to say, “Patience is a virtue.” Patience is part of the “Fruit of the Spirit” that leads us into and keeps us living in righteousness. Finally, Paul tells us to bear one another in love. Too often we get sick of each other for the slightest thing. We don’t want to be around each other. Our favorite saying is “There’s just something about them that . . .” How quickly we forget that at one time and not that very long-ago God forgave us of our wretchedness, our evil, sinful and lawless ways of living. BUT GOD!!! And all He requires of us is to love one another and to always consider one another as we would like to be considered. Forgive us our debts, trespasses, sins and we forgive our debtors, or those that trespass and sin against us. Let’s thank Him today. PRAYER: Lord, I thank You today, for You have opened the eyes of my understanding, that I may be able to walk worthy of the calling I have received; which is unto the Body of Christ and unto the service of the Kingdom of God. Help me to ever hereafter in the newness of life serve and please Thee, always by walking in love. Teach me to be patient, humble and gentle in all things and with all people. Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION

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“Then God said, “Let us make man in Our image and Our likeness and let them rule over the fish of the sea and birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” (NIV) When we look into a mirror, what we see reflects ourselves. When God looks at us He should see a reflection of Himself. A reflection is an expressed image looking back at its original form. However, what we see does not always reflect who or what we really are. You see, when God created us, it was in the expressed image of the Triune God Himself (Father, Son & Holy Ghost). That was how we were fashioned-after God Himself. To be fashioned in God’s likeness is to take on His characteristics, and to become children of God. That mean we should look just like our daddy. Wow! What an awesome reality that is. In the genesis of time we were on God’s mind. Genesis, the beginning of all things, even includes the origin of mankind as we know it today, not the BIG BANG THEORY. It was not an act of evolution, nor was it an accident in creation that caused man to come from the sea or evolve from the ape. God in the inception of time, took the time out, to create for himself, a people to dwell in and among. He took the time to distinguish us from the animals from the vegetation and even from the angels. That doesn’t mean that we are gods in the earth. It simply means that like parents we are the offspring of God the Father Almighty. However, more often than not, the image of God often bears no resemblance to our own self-image (how we see ourselves). It is moreover, how God see us-the way He created us, Genesis 1:31 “And God saw everything that He made, and, behold, it was very good.” This should cancel or cure the issue low self-esteem. If God who created us, and knows all things, sees all things, sees us in our perfect state, then why do we have problems accepting how He has made us. David said in 139th Psalm, verses 13-16“For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful; I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eye saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” What a beautiful thought. How precious and sweet it is to know that God has always had on his mind. Give him your best sacrifice of praise today. PRAYER: Father, I thank You today and I say Hallelujah unto Your name. For You took the time to create me and give me a name. You took the time out to fashion and shape me in your image and likeness. I only ask one thing today. That you continue to live in me and allow Your Holy Spirit to dwell in me daily that I may be a living testament to all who seek You. Thank You Lord, in Jesus’ name, Amen PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 45


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John 1:1 “Jesus said to him, I am the Way and the Truth and the Life: no one comes to the Father except by (through) Me.” “You must come in at the door.” Those words come from an old Negro spiritual that reiterates that there is only one entrance unto the Father and that is through the Son. You cannot enter God’s rest without passing through the doorway of his Son-Jesus our Lord and Savior. The Tabernacle of Moses was built with this in mind. The gate, which spanned the entire width of the eastern side of the tabernacle, and there was curtain fifteen feet high woven with three (completion) colors of fine linen. The height of the walls was double that of the outer fence. Those on the outside of the fence could see the top of the structure and would be drawn to know what lay within. They also would be assured that as long as it stood, the priests were ministering on their behalf. The colors used represented Christ. Blue means the color of heaven, authority of heaven over earth, Christ the Lord from heaven. Purple, blends of blue and scarlet refers to royalty, kingship, the God-man, Christ our King-representing the perfect union of His Deity and his humanity. The scarlet, represents the shedding of Christ’s blood by his death on the cross. On the cross He was made to be sin so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. These colors cannot be separated; they are intertwined to show Christ, himself. He is God, became man, died for us and returned to the throne victorious as our King. (2004, Casada, The Tabernacle of Moses)

PRAYER: Father, I thank You this day for Your Son, Jesus my Lord and Savior. Thank You for giving your Son to die for the atonement of my sins. Thank You for showing yourself to us through the expressed image of Christ on the cross, to call us back to yourself. Forgive me for all of my sins that have come to separate me from You. Help me to walk uprightly before You, always. In Jesus’ name I pray Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 47


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Day 14 Hebrews 2:14, 17 John 1:14 48


“Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death He might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil: Wherefore in all things it behooved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.” What a glorious thing. Our champion, our Savior Jesus took on flesh and through death, conquered death, heal and the grave!! What does that mean to you today? You see our enemy has already been defeated by the death of Jesus on the cross. We have spent so much time binding him up, forgetting that he’s under our feet already. Know that there is nothing that God cannot handle. No problem too big or too small, no disease, no financial problem, no marital problem, no sinful act is too hard for God. The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God of Moses, the God of Elijah, the God of David, the one true and living God, immortal, invisible, from everlasting to everlasting is the same God today, yesterday and forever. He allows us to go through situations for His Glory being revealed. This gives us a greater testimony about the goodness of God. Jesus became as we are. Every infirmity, every pain, every thought, everything that we can imagine or think, Jesus bore for us. He became our merciful and faithful high priest not because of his divinity, but because of his humanity, and it is through his humanity that we were reconciled back to the Father. Therefore, we are partakers, joint heirs to the throne of God along with Jesus, and we may now enter the Most Holy Place of our God without fear of death. Jesus paid it all. HALLELUJAH!!!

PRAYER: Father God in the name of Jesus, I just thank you right now for this special gift. I thank You right now for allowing your most precious gift to become flesh and dwell among us. For He was wounded for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquities, the chastisement of our peace was upon Him and by his stripes we are healed. We are set free. We are delivered this day from death, from sin, from fear, from depression, from oppression, from the hand of the enemy. Thank You for loving me Jesus. I can never repay the debt I owe, so please accept my worship and praise, as I seek to please You in the newness of Life. Amen PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 49


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Acts 2:27 “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.” ONE GOD AND ONE MEDIATOR—and “every knee shall bow, and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord.” That’s all there is to it. There is one God. He has many names but one God all the same. One mediator, that’s Jesus. Forget all of this other stuff. In Acts of the Apostles 17, Paul and Silas were in Thessalonica, in the home of Jason because there was no synagogue. There they preached and taught the gospel message of Jesus. As soon as the people of Thessalonica heard that he had been preaching about Jesus, they decided to get rid of him and send him to Athens. While there, Paul had a dispute with the local Jews as well as the devout preachers, stoics, and philosophers who wanted to know what Paul was talking, or ’babbling’ about. To them this was all strange news. You see, Paul was in a strange land talking to people who did not know this Jesus. They were worshippers of many gods. These were people of superstition. In verse 23 Paul addresses the people by saying “For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, Him declare I unto you.” He continued to tell them about Jesus. It is written here that some mocked him and some inquired further as to what he was saying, but only two believed. This will be the case for us as well. Many will not believe, many will walk away inspired, but many will walk away never to return. We must be like Paul, no matter what, we will preach of ONE GOD AND ONE MEDIATOR. There is no other way. There are many religions of the world and they each have their own system of thinking when it comes to the one and only true and living God. But even more than that, they have many beliefs about Jesus as the Son of God and the Son of Man. They question his divinity on one hand, and on the other they question his humanity. Whatever the case is, know today beyond a shadow of doubt that there is only ONE GOD AND ONE MEDIATOR FOR US ALL. Rest in that today. PRAYER: Father in heaven thank you for teaching and showing me that there is only one God and He is You, the one who made heaven and earth, the sea and all that dwell therein. From the beginning of time you formed me and gave me purpose. You first gave me a gift and that gift was your Son my Lord Jesus, the redeemer of all mankind. Whatever the people of this world may believe, help me to always know that You Are God and other than You there is no other. In all things I will worship You and You alone. In Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 51


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Day 16 Luke 1:35; Acts 2:17, 18 John 3:16 “The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come down to you, and God’s power will come over you. So, your child will be called the Holy Son of God.” (CEV) What an awesome promise! Just as the Holy Spirit came down to Mary the mother of Jesus, our Savior, so also has the Holy Spirit come down to us. Just as the Holy Spirit visited Mary and impregnated her with the promised Son of God, so also has the Holy Spirit impregnated each of us with the promise of God for the Kingdom of God. We often misinterpret the blessings of God thinking that they are specifically for the one carrying the promise. But as He spoke to Abraham in the days of old, so also does he still speak to us. The promises of God are not for selfish people. God is not a selfish God. He himself, gave us his only begotten Son to redeem us back to himself. What greater gift is there than life? What greater gift is there than love? You see, in the beginning was the Word, and that Word became flesh and dwelled among us, so much so that his own people did not even recognize him. So, it is with us as well. When the Holy Spirit has come upon us, has empowered us, has changed our appearance, our attitude, or outlook, those people around us don’t recognize us anymore. We begin to look different. Why? Because we have spent time in the presence of God and we have begun to look more like Him. The Spirit of the Lord is being poured out today all over the earth. And just as it is written, so it is happening. Sons and daughters alike are being filled with the power of God by His Holy Spirit and things are changing in our lives and in the world around us. Make a difference today. Make up your mind to be caught in the wave of the Holy Spirit as God pours out himself upon all flesh. Witness the greatest manifestation of the Spirit of God in the earth today as you purpose in your heart, to align yourself with the Word of God that the Holy Spirit may dwell richly in you. PRAYER: Father God in the name of Jesus, you have manifested your presence in the earth through your people. It is my desire to be totally submissive to you and your will. Use me this day to be a witness of the great story of Jesus. Holy Spirit you are welcomed to come into my life today and make me new. Transform me, purge me that I may be white as snow. Search my heart, my mind and my soul and anything you find not pleasing to you O God, cast it away from me and into the sea of forgetfulness. In Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 53


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Day 17 2 Corinthians 5:21 Hebrews 2:17 Isaiah God made him who had no sin to be sin for us: that we might be made; the righteousness of God in him.” (KJV) Our Lord himself, came into this world in the image and likeness of mankind for the sake of mankind. What a gift! Jesus came into the earth in human form and took on the sins and grief of this world. How could someone so righteous become righteous again? The religions of this world acknowledge that Jesus was born, and that he lived. But what makes us different as the Body of Christ, is that we have the revelation and answer to the questions that the other religions reject. That is, although He lived and died, He didn’t stay dead. . . Prior to dying however, Jesus took on the most awful and painful curse that no one else could bear. In the 22nd Psalm of David, this king and chief musician describes in detail what our Savior bore for the world. He withstood being beaten until his skin was torn from his bones. Although He had no broken bones, he was marred more than any man. I was watching Mel Gibson’s Passion of the Christ a few weeks ago, and as I watched the Roman soldiers, I felt it was more gruesome than anyone can fathom. To see how easily man can become caught up in the destruction of ourselves, is something that is incomprehensible. And if they could scourge our Savior beyond recognition, what regard does the enemy have for us? His job is simple—kill, steal, and destroy. Divide and conquer. The victor is Christ our Lord. Through the agony of Gethsemane and the final giving up of the Ghost on Calvary, righteousness was restored. Reconciliation between God and man was now personal. No longer was there a need for goat and bull sacrifices. Jesus had become the ultimate sacrifice - the lamb that was slain from the foundation of the earth. He became as we are to bring about the greatest justice any man could ever hope for. That is freedom from death, hell, and the grave; freedom from bondage, strife and the things that have held us captive. Jesus came so that we might have life and have it more abundantly. Enjoy your abundance in Christ today. PRAYER: Father in heaven, thank You for this day that You have made. For this is truly a day of reflection and awakening. Each day I awake to your brand-new mercies. Thank You for the gift of life through your Son, my Lord and Savior. Thank You, for granting me access to come unto You myself, to repent and be baptized. I love You on this day more than I did yesterday. Thank You, Father, for Jesus today and always. Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 55


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DAY 18 I John 3:5 And yet know that he was manifested to take away the sins; and in him is no sin. What a friend we have in Jesus. This is the beginning phrase of one of the most beloved hymns of the church. All our sins and griefs too bare is the second phrase. It is by this very act of selflessness that we can call Jesus friend, and call God our Father. It is by the manifested presence of God the Father, in the body of the Son Jesus who knew no sin, that we are able to even go unto the throne of grace and obtain mercy in our time of need. Because He knew no sin, we are forgiven and made whole. We are cleansed and purged of all our sins. Christ dies to take away the sins of the world. He was without blemish. That is the only way he could have become the sacrificial lamb. In the Old Testament, once a year the high priest of Israel would enter into the Most Holy Place and sprinkle the blood of the lamb on the gold lid to the Ark of the Covenant, this is called the Mercy seat. It is the place of propitiation—place of redemption. The blood had to be that of an unblemished lamb (Leviticus 16:15). In the New Testament, Jesus has become that unblemished sacrificial lamb for the sake of all mankind. Just as the ark served as a visible reminder of God’s presence with the Hebrew people, the cross serves as a visible reminder of the salvific work of Jesus as He hung there taking on the sins of the world. Each time we celebrate Mass, Eucharist or Communion, we should do so in remembrance of the work of Christ on the cross for all to see. In that He is lifted, drawing all men unto himself. PRAYER: Father in the name of Jesus, we thank you for the work of salvation on the cross through the shed blood of Christ for the redemption of our sins. Because of the Cross of Calvary, we are set free, healed, delivered, and born again. Thank you for another chance. Thank You for life again. Help us to always celebrate in remembrance of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 57


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DAY 19 John 10:17-18 “Therefore, doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.” That’s right! No one took His life. HE freely obeyed the Father and freely gave His life for us. What a wonderful gift. In Christ, God personally revealed himself to all of humanity, through humanity itself. To see Him is to see God (John 12:45), to honor Christ, is to honor God (John 5:23), and to reject Christ is to reject God (Luke 10:16). Jesus, the living Word, lives his life in and through us as we walk in dependence upon Him. Therefore, it is so imperative to understand the nature of Christ Jesus himself. He was both fully God and fully man; both divine and human. He wasn’t just a great teacher or profound prophet. He was, and is, and is to come; the Son of God, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, the Beginning and the Ending, the Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last. It is in Him that our very life takes on its meaning, for to live is Christ and to die is gain. Just as Jesus was obedient in the laying down of His life, we must be obedient in the laying down of our lives to follow Him. There is no other way. Come unto Jesus today and let Him give you a brand-new start.

PRAYER: Father, thank You for allowing me to experience Your Son, Jesus Christ. Thank You for allowing me to come into fellowship with You, through Him. Help me to be a light to others that they too may be led to Christ and that they may learn of You. In Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________

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DAY 20 Exodus 32; Jeremiah 2:11-13 John 12:32 “And if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.” Here, we hear our Savior as He once again prepares the disciples for his impending death upon the cross. It is imperative to understand that Jesus is telling us here that as we the body of believers, lift him up in the earth, He will do the drawing. The work for us here is to lift Him up. How do we do that? We lift him up in everything we do and in everything we say. At work, in school, in the mall, at home, our job is to be lifters of his name, lifters of his praise, and lifters of his love. In verse one of the 34th Psalm the writer makes a declaration- “I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.” He then invites the reader to join him in this praise in verse 3 “O magnify the Lord with me and let us exalt his name together.” In today’s Scripture Exodus 32 the children of Israel made a terrible mistake. They formed a god of their own while in the wilderness. They chose to put an idol before God. What constitutes an idol? It’s not just the material that something is made from, but it is the position in which the thing itself holds in our hearts and occupies our time. This could be anything or anyone. We must be careful of this. Jesus said that no man comes unto the Father but by Him. Therefore, we must be lifters of His named his name only. We must realize that anything we put in place of God, or before God will be taken away. Why? For it is written, “You shall not make for yourselves any graven image [to worship it] or any likeness of anything that is in the heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: you shall not bow down yourself to them or serve them; for I the Lord you God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to third and fourth generations of those who hate me, But showing mercy and steadfast love to a thousand generations of those who love Me and keep my commandments.” (Exodus 20; 4, 5) Therefore, friends, be careful not to lift anything above the name of Jesus. For in all that you do, do it as unto the God of our salvation and in this our Father is well pleased. PRAYER: Father, in the name of Jesus, help me this day to always, in everything I do and say, to be a lifter of your name, and lifter of your praise. Help me to always be an example for others to see and follow that they may come to know you through your Son Jesus the Christ, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________

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THE HEART OF A WORSHIPPER THE MOST HOLY PLACE “Jesus, as man walked sinless and perfect before God and His uprightness only caused man to be more aware of his own inability to reach God. As long as Jesus was on Earth, man could not enter into the glory. Not until His death did we have complete access to the Father.” Casada, Barbara the Tabernacle of Moses It is here inside the Inner Chamber where worship takes on a different meaning and moves into the third dimension. Therefore, brethren, having holy boldness to enter the Most Holy Place of our Lord by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, his flesh. Hebrews 10:19, 20

DAY 21 Habakkuk 1: 13; I John 1:9;Psalm 23: 3-4 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” As we come unto the throne of grace we are to come with a repentant heart. For our worship to be authentic we must present our bodies in a way that God will receive us. He will not look upon sin and he will not entertain 63


a prayer of iniquity. Taking off all masks, we must come before the Lord naked and unashamed. Those who have a heart to worship God come constantly in a state of repentance. Habakkuk writes in chapter 1 and verse 13 “Thou are of purer eyes than to behold evil and canst look on iniquity.” This simply means that God hates sin and will not tolerate wrong. God is holy. Therefore, we can only approach him when we are clean. It is in Psalm 24: 3-4 where David writes that it is only as we have clean hands and a pure heart, that we can ascend the hill of the Lord or stand in His holy place.” We must come unto the cross daily asking for forgiveness of sins and forgiving others of their sin against us. Remember that harboring ill feelings towards our neighbors is iniquity and we cannot enter unto the throne of God with hate in our hearts. He will not hear it. So, position yourself today with a forgiving heart. Position yourself today as we allow Him to purge us and make us white as snow.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, today we come before you, repenting of every sin. Whatever it may be or may have been, we come to you now confessing our sins, for you are faithful and just to forgive us of them and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Now we lift our hand in worship and praise to you giving thanks always and believing with our hearts that you have forgiven us today. In Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________

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DAY 22 Luke 18: 9-14; Proverbs 29: 23 “A man’s pride shall bring him low, but honor shall uphold the humble in spirit . . .” A true worshipper recognizes that without Christ he can do nothing. Humility is not thinking less of yourself but rather thinking of yourself less. We must be careful not to become puffed up as we mature in Christ. In witnessing others, it is important to remember from where we have come from. In the eighties, a gospel group called the Jackson Southernaires sang a song titled “Don’t Look Down on a Man.” That song was specific in detail about how we are to treat one another. When a person is already down, the last thing they need is for someone from the church telling them how bad or how horrible they are. The last thing they need is for someone from the church pouring salt into an open wound. We as believers need to be mindful of where we ourselves could be had it not been for the grace and the mercy of God in our lives. We must learn to (Proverbs 4:23) guard our hearts and our minds. Keep them in check. We cannot allow the cunning and crafty tactics of the enemy to infiltrate and cause us to become prideful and haughty in spirit. That is what caused Lucifer to be cast out of heaven. That is what can cause so many disruptions and divisions in the Body of Christ. As a member of the Praise and Worship Team, or as an Adjutant; as a missionary, or as the pastor; Bishop, Apostle or Prophet the same holds true even more. All glory must go to the creator and sustainer of all things. To receive the glory ourselves would be an insult to God. Let us remember that it’s not about us. It’s about Jesus. PRAYER: Father, today I ask you to guard my mind and my heart that I may always be humble before you. Create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit that I may serve you freely without any hindrances. Help me to always focus on you and to remember that in all things the glory belongs to you. In Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 66


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DAY 23 I Samuel 15:22 Genesis 22: 1-3 John 15:10 “And Samuel said, ‘Hath the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of the Lord?’ Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.’” Obedience, yes obedience. A true worshipper has an obedient heart; a heart that not only hears the voice of the Lord, but follows the instructions, the precepts and teachings of the Lord. The obedient heart knows that it cannot “have it my way.” Serving God with an obedient heart requires that we first lay down our own wills and selfish desire. We must put aside the people in our lives that misdirect us and those that we allow to have a greater voice than God. The true worshipper doesn’t want it any other way. To do so would grieve the Holy Spirit. God considers an obedient heart far greater than any external expression of worship. King Saul made the mistake in our scripture of disobeying God by trying to offer up a sacrifice, when his instructions specified clearly the destruction of everything in the land, even the inhabitants. He thought he would do God a favor by holding on to some of the things that God had said to destroy. As a result, the kingdom was stripped away from Saul and the Lord removed His Spirit away from Saul; and David became king. We make this tremendous mistake ourselves today. Remember disobedience causes a breakdown in our relationship with God. Disobedience leads to rebellion, and rebellion is unto witchcraft. Rebellion causes the heart to become cold and impenetrable. Ask the Lord today, “in what ways have I been disobedient?” Then repent and ask him to forgive you of that disobedience and grant you another chance to rectify the bad choices that were made. PRAYER: Dear Lord, today I ask you to please show me the areas in which I have disobeyed you. I ask you to forgive me of that disobedience and to show me how to correct the bad choices that I have made. I ask you dear Lord to help me to be instantly obedient to your voice, to your will and to your Word. I want my relationship with you to be fruitful and loving, and to always follow your commands. In Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________

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_________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ DAY 24 I John 5:3; Hebrews 4 “This is love for God; to obey His commands.” Did you know that we are friends of Jesus? That’s right! I am a friend of God and so are you. And when you are friends you do what is right by your friend. A friendship is a covenant that cannot be broken. And sometimes friendships run deeper than blood relationships. You see as friends of Jesus; He wishes that we would eagerly respond to His commands because we want to please Him. Hebrews 4 tells us, those who enter God’s rest, have ceased from their own works and are totally submitted and obedient to God’s word. Yes, it’s just that deep, and that simple at the same time. Simple in that we don’t have to be concerned about the cares of this world because God has it all under control. Deep in that these things run deep into the very core of our being. When we are disobedient it hurts the heart of God, for we were created in his image and likeness. It is written in Mark 3:25 “And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand.” Therefore, because we are the temple of the Holy One himself, if we are disobedient it will cause a division within our very being and in everything around us. That division causes an erosion if it goes unchecked. We must not allow our intimacy with Jesus to be disrupted because of our disobedience. Seek the Lord today and ask Him to help you become submissive to his will as Jesus was. Ask Him to see to it that by whatever means necessary, His will be done in your life today. PRAYER: Lord, today we come boldly before your throne asking you to please draw nigh unto us as we draw nigh unto you. Today we are asking you to help us be obedient to your every command, as your Son Jesus was. Help us to commit this day and all of our works to you that our thoughts may be established. Help us to be diligent in our service and diligent in our obedience to you, always in Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________

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DAY 25 Matthew 5:23, 24 Isaiah 6:8 Proverbs 27:17 “Therefore, if thou bring thy gift to the altar and there remember that thy brother hath ought against thee, leave there thy gift before the altar and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.” (KJV)

When we are united in the Spirit, it causes a major shift in the atmosphere. Where love resides, hatred cannot abide. We, being believers and followers of Christ must look upon others through the eyes of God’s love. For love covers a multitude of sins. Reconciliation and forgiveness are both crucial parts of our worship experience. How can a heart that is filled with hatred towards our sisters and brothers, freely worship, serve, love or be obedient to God? It can’t. For God is love. Jesus said in John 13:35 “By this shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” All too often we try to get around this love thing, because it is something that we think is hidden or tucked away. It is not noticeable. WRONG!!! It is very noticeable. It even has an odor. Think about it. If there is contention on the choir, you see it. If the ushers aren’t united, you see it. If husbands and wives, parents and children, friends, siblings, anybody claiming to be an offspring of Christ is in any way, shape or form disgruntled or out of sorts, it becomes increasingly noticeable in worship. How? It ties up the service. It blocks the move of God. It blocks the flow of God in service. Jesus came so that we may be reconciled back to the Father. For, we were lost. We were in darkness and separated from God because of sin. Through the shed blood of Jesus Christ, we are now born again. I say to you on this day, REPENT and be BAPTIZED into the fellowship of Christ and His Body. Allow the Holy Spirit to work in you today. PRAYER: Father, I pray today that wherever there is any iniquity in my heart towards my sisters and brothers, that you reveal it to me now and forgive me. I ask that you grant me the ability to forgive others that I may be able to truly be an example of your love. Show me this day, how to trust and teach me how to obey You this day. Help me to love my enemies and to encourage my sisters and brothers in Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 72


_________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ DAY 26 Colossians 3:16 Psalm 96 Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord . . .” (KJV) Singing, is one of my gifts. It’s how I worship the Lord. I find myself singing anytime and anywhere. Not loudly, but sometimes just humming as I’m going about my day. It’s such a part of me that I don’t even realize I’m doing it. In worship singing is vital for me. It’s my expression of love that is released unto God. We are to study God’s word that it too becomes such a part of us that it spills out in conversation. We should be so full of His Word that 73


we can almost always encourage anyone because He lives on the inside. Jesus comes alive in us because of His Word and because of His Holy Spirit, which now lives inside of us. We are to study His word daily, practice being in His presence daily. David wrote so eloquently in the 96th Psalm and verse 8 “Give unto the Lord the glory due unto his name: bring an offering and come into his courts.” Verse 9 blesses me “O worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness: fear before him, all the earth.” The whole earth is commanded to fear the Lord. The whole earth is commanded to give Him glory. How can we not come into His presence with singing and rejoicing? Once there we find and awesome wonder to behold, it’s the beauty and holiness of a great God. Selah.

PRAYER: Lord today I rise in worship. I rise giving you glory. I come into your presence with singing and rejoicing for the great and marvelous things you have done. I also stand in awe of your holiness. I stand in awe of who you are, and I bow before your throne crying Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty. Heaven and earth are full of your glory; glory be to thee o Lord Most High. Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 74


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work of the Master as the clouds roll back to reveal the sun and I can’t help but give him the praise that is due to His name. Join me today in honor of the Great God He is!

PRAYER: “God, you are my God, and I will ever praise you. Will seek you in the morning and I will learn to walk in your ways. Step by step you lead me, and I will follow you all of my days.” Amen. PERSONAL REFLECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________

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He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror or night, Nor the arrow that flies by day, Nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, Nor the plague that destroys at midday. A thousand may fall at your side, Ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. You will only observe with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked. If you make the Most High, your dwelling —even the Lord, who is my refuge— Then no harm will befall you, no disaster will come near your tent. For He will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; They will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread upon the lion and the cobra; You will trample the great lion and the serpent. Because he loves me, “says the Lord, I will rescue him; I will protect him, For he acknowledges my name. He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble. I will deliver him and honor him. With long life will I satisfy him and show him my salvation.” Amen … PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 78


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DAY 29 2 Chronicles 16:9 “The eyes of the Lord run to and for throughout the whole earth looking for those to whom he may show himself strong, whose heart is perfect towards him.” To remain in God’s presence, we must have a right heart. David wrote in the 51st Psalm and verse 10 “Create in me a clean heart, O God and renew a right spirit within me.” He continues in verse 11 “Do not cast me away from your presence or take your spirit from me.” Here he is pleading with God and we should do likewise. No matter what the sin, what the transgression may be, there is nothing too hard for God. We are to 79


take our burdens and sins alike to the Lord for He cares for us. He is concerned about us and it is His good pleasure to bless us. The Lord is searching the earth for those to whom he may show himself strong. That means mighty. He wants to do miracles in our lives. He wants to bless us with irreversible blessings. He wants to shower us with His love. But our hearts have to be pure before him. Our hearts have to be clean before him. Our hearts have to be blameless before him. In order to achieve that right standing with God we must repent daily. Repent even when we don’t have anything to repent for. Just repent. Be cleansed daily in the blood of the lamb. Let him wash us each day, just as we cleanse our bodies each day. Let’s wake up in worship. Let’s wake up in his bosom every night. Let’s just stay at the feet of his throne always seeking, always knocking and always asking.

PRAYER: Father, I love you. I ask you today to wash me. Purge me with hyssop and I will be clean. Let me hear joy and gladness. Create in me a pure heart to worship you and a steadfast spirit to continually serve you in the newness of life. In Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTION _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ 80


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How do we make worship a lifestyle? We must do just what the Scripture says. We must keep the commandments of the Lord in our hearts and in our mouths. We must teach our children the commandments of the Lord. We are talking about more than the 10 commandments of Exodus, but the laws and precepts according to the kingdom of God. We must talk about the Lord and all the great things of God at home, driving in the car, walking along the road, at the gym, in the mall, at the grocery store, while at work, during dinner. We must never get to the point where we think “it’s just too much church.” To say it’s too much church is to say that we only need God sometimes in our lives. Quite the contrary, we need God at all times. David penned it so beautifully 81


again in the 34th Psalm “I will bless the Lord at all times; his praises shall continually be in my mouth. My soul shall boast in the Lord; let the afflicted hear and rejoice; glorify the Lord with me and let us exalt his name together.” We live in a society where it’s become unthinkable to pray in school, to pray on the job or even have a Bible on your desk at work. Everyone is so offended by the Word and by the people of God. Tough!!! Let them be offended. God is too good, too kind, too merciful, too faithful, and too marvelous for anyone else to get the gory out of our lives. Walk in your manifested blessings today and let nothing or no one take it away from you. Pastor Shirley Caesar says it like this “This joy I have the world didn’t give and the world can’t take it away.”

PRAYER: Hear me O Lord. Thank you for your presence. Thank you for your joy. Thank you for your peace. The world doesn’t know it, and the world doesn’t understand it. But your o Lord are great and greatly to be praised. Help me to always let the light of your love shine through me. Use me as you will this day in Jesus’ name, Amen. PERSONAL REFELECTIOM

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From the Companion CD Inside the Inner Chamber of Worship

Dear Jesus Dear Jesus, I love you, I really do There is no other Quite like You So meek and mild, So humble and divine, Oh Lord I love You By ÂŽ Necol 84


Dr. Vanessa Williams-Cook is the Executive Director of Rebirth Empowerment Center in Florence, SC; She is the eldest of two children to Michael and Sadie Deas of Hollywood, SC. She and her husband James are residents of Florence, SC along with their three children, Brandon Alexander (27), Charles (12), and Gabriel Michael-Kristopher (11). Dr. Cook is the Founder and Executive Director of Nana’s Girls’ Foundation; a nonprofit organization for the reinvention of The Total Woman, the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Rebirth of the Total Woman Magazine; and the Owner/Operator of the Total Woman Experience. She is a graduate of South Carolina State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree Music Performance and a minor in Music Merchandising and Management. She is a graduate of His Excellence Theological Seminary in Florence, SC holding a Master of Science in Psychology with emphasis in Life Coaching from Grand Canyon University; Master of Theology Degree, and a Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Christian Counseling. She is an accomplished singer, songwriter, and musician with awards on both the collegiate and professional levels. As a gospel artist, and preacher Dr. Cook travels ministering to people from all walks of life. She is a lover of God’s Word and of God’s people, making no apologies for standing up for kingdom principles. Her aim and mission are to bring hungry and dying souls back to their rightful place in God, and to empower them for victorious Christian living. Dr. Cook has been in ministry for over 20 years, coming from a diverse background where she has served as Youth/Children’s Choir Leader, Sunday School Teacher, Minister of Worship/Music and Adult Choir Director. And having served among leaders from most mainline denominations such as: Lutheran, Presbyterian, United Methodist, Holiness and Pentecostal; although she grew up serving in both the African Methodist Episcopal and Baptist churches. In 2002 she served on the ministerial staff of Manna Life Center in Charleston, SC., under the leadership of Elder Kay WG Colleton. There she gave birth to her first solo gospel recording Inside the Inner Chamber of Worship and the release of Inside the Inner Chamber of Worship 30Day Devotional (companion to her premier recording project with like title), Rebirth Magazine, and Sister 2 Sister (an online Newsletter). A survivor of domestic violence, Dr. Cook is also the founder of Nana’s Girls’ Foundation serving women ages 18-40 who are victims of Domestic Violence, Women in transition, and single mothers; and runaways-giving birth to her latest project Rebirth of the Total Woman, a magazine written by women for women, teaching women to value themselves and aiding them in personal reinvention and redirection.

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Other Publications by Dr. Vanessa Williams-Cook include:

Reflections Did You Even Notice that I’d Stopped Laughing? Four Women, One Thing in CommonFrom Barrenness to Life Change Your Focus, Change Your God, Change Your Praise Can a Broken Marriage Be Made Whole? God’s Requirements 21st Century Apostolic Worship Manual

Contact Dr. Vanessa Williams-Cook for your next seminar, workshop, Concert, Conference or Convention. VWC Ministries is multi-faceted and able to meet whatever you need may be. drvwcook@gmail.com or totalwoman@writeme.com This publication and more available for purchase through PayPal.

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Inside the chamber  

A 30-Day Worship Journal and Prayer Workbook

Inside the chamber  

A 30-Day Worship Journal and Prayer Workbook

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