Only a whisper ∙

Only a whisper

These are just the fringes of all that he does, merely a whisper of his power. Who, then, can comprehend the thunder of his power? – Job 26:14

Job 26:11-14

 11 The foundations of heaven tremble; they shudder at his rebuke.

 12 By his power the sea grew calm. By his skill he crushed the great sea monster.

 13 His Spirit made the heavens beautiful, and his power pierced the gliding serpent.

 14 These are just the beginning of all that he does, merely a whisper of his power. Who, then, can comprehend the thunder of his power?

1 Kings 19:11-12

 11 And he said, “Go out and stand on the mount before the LORD.” And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind tore the mountains and broke in pieces the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake.

 12 And after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper.

Of all the knowledge available in the universe, how much do we know? Of all the books in the Library of Congress, how many have we read? And what of the infinite, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent Father God, how much do we know about Him?

The answer to all these questions is the same, extraordinarily little.

The Father’s omniscience, omnipotence, and omnipresence are seen in what has been made. What are the implications of the unlimited power and authority of the One who created and governs everything? Trying to understand the Father through His creation, is foolhardy. It would be like researching one tiny grain of sand, and thinking we had knowledge and comprehension of all the sand in existence.

We hear thunder, but how can we presume to understand thunder by merely hearing it.

Job 26:14 These are just the fringes of all that he does, merely a whisper of his power. Who, then, can comprehend the thunder of his power?

The Hebrew word translated fringes or outskirts is qatsah. It refers to the end or extremity of objects, border regions, or edge. It speaks of something which is only partially disclosed or revealed; the term can be translated outline, glimpse, a small part of, only a fraction of, and only hints of.

Job’s friends saw the Father’s handiwork in nature, and erroneously and arrogantly thought they knew all about Him. They brashly thought they could explain the Father to Job.

Job’s view is diametrically opposed. How can you know the whole from the parts? How can you understand and comprehend an object by only observing its outline or shadow?  How can we possibly reason lesser to the greater and fully comprehend, when the greater is the Father Himself who is infinite?

What we see of the Father in creation is only the fringes of His ways. What we hear is but a whisper of His power! You may read The Book of Nature carefully and still have a great deal more to learn about the Father. Knowing a few facts about God’s creation is not the same as knowing truths about the God of Creation (Wiersbe).

“He truly knows God perfectly that finds Him incomprehensible and unable to know him” (Richard Rolle). The more we learn about the Father and His Word, the more we realize how little we know and how much more there is to discover. “Beware of people who claim to know all about God, for their claim is proof they know neither God nor themselves” (Wiersbe).

Things that are seen, heard, or understood are but an infinitesimally small part of all that the Father is and has done. They provide only a small hint of His greatness.


We know and realize only nano tidbits of Who and What Father is.

Father help me to look beyond Your power and listen for Your gentle, soft whisper.


Often when we think of the Lord God omnipotent, The Father of all, our minds naturally gravitate to things that are immense in time and space. The Father sees everything, made everything, and controls everything (Job 26:7-13)

We wonder at the seeming infinite immensity and complexity of His creation. We marvel at the intelligent design, the precision, and absolute balance, the harnessed and regulated power, and energy. Even seeming chaos and disarray has order and beauty.

According to chaos theory, the apparent randomness of chaotic complex systems is not random at all. Rather the apparent states of disorder and irregularities are actually governed by underlying patterns and laws. There are underlying patterns, interconnectedness, constant feedback loops, repetition, self-similarity, fractals, and self-organization.

The Father does not always act big. When the Father gets personal, very personal, He draws close and speaks in soft whispers. He uses His “inside voice.” Perhaps remembering the Exodus, Elijah set his expectations on the big, powerful, and dramatic. But the Father was not in the powerful wind, the rock-shattering earthquake, or the fire he witnessed.

But the Father did something unexpected. Rather than speak in a grand, momentous, thunderous voice shaking the earth, He spoke in a gentle, quiet whisper, the “sound of sheer silence” (NRSV) (1 Kings 19:11-12).

The Father was gently drawing Elijah back to Him. In fear, Elijah had run for his life. He was now cowering in a cave trying to keep himself safe and out of danger. Pause for a moment, can you see Elijah hiding, trembling in the cave? When someone whispers, you have to get close to hear and understand. The Father is coaxing Elijah to courage. Only when Elijah hears the Father’s whisper, does he finally venture out of the cave. Once again, Elijah was safe in the Father’s presence.

When was the last time you heard His whisper, His still small voice?

¯\_()_/¯ 12-07-9

Night Stalker ∙

Night Stalker

Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. – 1 Peter 5:8

Job 1:6-12

 6 One day the members of the heavenly court came to present themselves before the LORD, and the Accuser, Satan, came with them.

 7 “Where have you come from?” the LORD asked Satan. Satan answered the LORD, “I have been patrolling the earth, watching everything that’s going on.”

 8 Then the LORD asked Satan, “Have you noticed my servant Job? He is the finest man in all the earth. He is blameless– a man of complete integrity. He fears God and stays away from evil.”

 9 Satan replied to the LORD, “Yes, but Job has good reason to fear God.

 10 You have always put a wall of protection around him and his home and his property. You have made him prosper in everything he does. Look how rich he is!

 11 But reach out and take away everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face!”

 12 “All right, you may test him,”

The Night Stalker, a made-for-TV movie, was first shown on ABC on January 11, 1972, as the ABC Movie of the Week. Darren McGavin plays an investigative reporter seeking a serial killer in the Las Vegas area.

The Night Stalker became the highest-rated original TV movie on US television at that time. It inspired a sequel, a single-season TV series of twenty episodes titled Kolchak: The Night Stalker which ran on ABC between 1974–75.

The popular TV movie and the TV series inspired Chris Carter’s The X-Files. The Night Stalker of course is pure fiction.

However, there is a real night stalker. He remains in the shadows, invisible. Yet he is well-known. He makes his presence known anywhere, whenever he desires. He is the god of this world and he has temporary dominion (2 Corinthians 4:4). He is the enemy of our souls.

The apostle Peter pictures him as a lion, perhaps the fiercest of all known beasts of that day, a menacing, cruel, ferocious beast of prey. In his mind’s eye, he sees this huge intimidating, vicious feline pacing back and forth on patrol. He roams about, he goes from place to place, he prowls, he stalks, he is always on the alert, watching, glaring, sizing up the terrain, and searching for potential prey. His mere presence is intimidating, but if that is not enough, he terrorizes his would-be victims with his roar. He is the original night stalker, the prince of darkness.

The enemy’s goal is always the same, to inflict damage and destruction. He seeks not merely to frighten or capture his prey; he seeks to maul and devour it.

The Greek word translated devour is katapiomai from kata down and pino drink. It has the sense of gulping down, swallowing hurriedly or greedily. Picture two dogs on either side of a barbecue longingly watching hamburgers being cooked. The chef is momentarily distracted, two hamburgers fall off. One drops in the direction of a small Yorkshire terrier. He lets it hit the ground and then begins to take as many mouthfuls as he can, as fast as he can. The other hamburger heads towards a Rottweiler. He catches it in midair and swallows it in one gulp. He devoured it.


1 John 4:4 Greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.

Father thank You for reminding us that we have a real adversary, the original night stalker, the enemy of our souls, the prince of darkness.


There is an ongoing dark and dreadful spiritual war. Our adversary the devil never tires or sleeps. He is subtle and clever spying out our weaknesses, vulnerabilities, and fears. He then strikes where we are most susceptible. Often when we least expect it. That is what the enemy does.

Where would the adversary attack you?

His agenda is quite similar to that of The Terminator, the 1984 movie, with Arnold Schwarzenegger. Kyle Reese, “Listen, and understand! That Terminator is out there! It can’t be bargained with. It can’t be reasoned with. It doesn’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear! And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead!”

“That’s what he does! That’s all he does! You can’t stop him!”

Being warned by the apostle Peter, how should we proceed? Peter lays out some guidelines.

Stay alert, keep awake, be constantly ready, be on watch, be ready for whatever may happen, be prepared for what will happen . . .. Resist him, stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith (1 Peter 5:8-9).

To be sober means to be serious-minded, to take a realistic approach to life, to be intelligent concerning the stratagems of Satan (MacDonald). We must never forget that we are in a spiritual war. Regardless of how well things may seem to be going for us, we live in a perpetual war zone. How many casualties occur because we think we live in a time of peace (Stanley)?

Our enemy may act like a lion, but The Lord Jesus Christ is a lion! The Lion of the tribe of Judah (Revelation 5:5).

Our greatest weapon seems very odd and unusual until we reflect upon its significance: blood. Not just any blood, but the blood of the Lamb. Through His death, the Lord Jesus Christ overcame the enemy of our souls.

Revelation 12:11 And they have defeated him by the blood of the Lamb and by their testimony. And they did not love their lives so much that they were afraid to die.

1 Corinthians 15:57-58

 57 But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.

 58 So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.

As far as the Lord Jesus Christ is concerned our adversary is no longer a vicious, prowling lion but rather a servile, domesticated kitten. On the day of the crucifixion, the headlines in heaven read: Lamb conquers lion! The enemy has been defeated by the blood of the Lamb!

¯\_()_/¯ 11-13-9

Looking for a city

Looking for a city

They were looking for a better place, a heavenly homeland. That is why God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them. – Hebrews 11:16

Hebrews 11:8-10

 8 It was by faith that Abraham obeyed when God called him to leave home and go to another land that God would give him as his inheritance. He went without knowing where he was going.

 9 And even when he reached the land God promised him, he lived there by faith – for he was like a foreigner, living in tents. And so did Isaac and Jacob, who inherited the same promise.

 10 Abraham was confidently looking forward to a city with eternal foundations, a city designed and built by God.

The search for lost, fabled cities of the ancient world forgotten by time has enchanted, even mesmerized explorers and archaeologists for centuries. On April 10, 2021, the discovery of the Lost Golden City of Luxor was announced. Archaeologists searched for this particular city for decades. The venerable Egyptian city of Luxor was well-known in the ancient world. But it was abandoned and buried under an ocean of sand for 3400 years.

The site dates from the era of the 18th-dynasty. It was built by Amenhotep III who ruled between around 1386 and 1353 BC. He presided over a golden age, an era of extraordinary wealth, power, and luxury. This all passed to his son Amenhotep IV who ruled from around 1353–1336 BC.

Amenhotep IV upended Egyptian culture, abandoning all of the traditional Egyptian pantheon. He became a monotheist worshiping the sun god Aten. He changed his name from Amenhotep IV to the more well-known name Akhenaten, which means “devoted to Aten.” Akhenaten abandoned ancient Luxor.

Akhenaten built the short-lived city of Akhetaten, where he ruled with his wife, Nefertiti, and worshipped the sun. After his death, his young son Tutankhamun (King Tut) became ruler of Egypt and subsequently turned his back on Akhenaten’s faith and returned to traditional Egyptian religion.

Because Luxor was abandoned rather than conquered and destroyed, it contains stunningly well-preserved remains similar to those at Pompeii in its degree of preservation. “It’s very much a snapshot in time – an Egyptian version of Pompeii” (Salima Ikram, head of the American University in Cairo’s Egyptology unit).

What of the esteemed, promised city of God? The Father promised Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and their families a land and a special city of which He was the architect and builder. In history, these promises have only been partially fulfilled. Their ultimate fulfillment is yet future. We cannot “be certain exactly when or precisely how the prophecies would come to complete fulfillment” (Joel Rosenberg). We are only certain that they will be.


In our throwaway society, junk is typically stuff we no longer need. It has no value and is regarded as worthless, meaningless, or useless. We considered nothing more than trash! The Father does not make junk.

Father thank You for making unconditional promises that one day will be completely fulfilled. Encourage us to be like those that preceded us to see them by faith from “afar.” Thank You that You know I am but dust. But wonder of wonders, I am Your dust.


The ancient patriarchs were looking for a promised city, a heavenly homeland. One that the Father had prepared for them (Hebrews 11:16). None of them saw what the Father had promised during their lifetimes. However, by faith, they saw it from “afar” (Hebrews 11:13). By faith, they believed in the coming fulfillment of the Father’s promises. They were looking for the complete realization of what had been predicted. They died in faith without ever entering into the reality of all that was promised.

Hebrews 11:13 All these people died still believing what God had promised them. They did not receive what was promised, but they saw it all from a distance and welcomed it.

Father does not make promises that He does not keep. But the fulfillment comes in His timing, not ours. The children of the King referenced in the book of Hebrews lived in tents. But they were continually looking for the city which the Father had promised. Faith is seeing the unseen (Hebrews 11:27). “The important thing is not what we live in, but what we look for” (Dr. George Morrison). The partial fulfillment of the Father’s promises is the foretaste of things to come.

But there is more! The Father honors faith because faith honors Him.

1 Samuel 2:30 I will honor those who honor me.

Because children of the King referenced in the book of Hebrews expressed their faith in word and deed, the Father was pleased to associate Himself with them.

Hebrews 11:16 God is not ashamed to be called their God.

The Greek word translated ashamed is epaischunomai. The Greek root aisch originally to that which is ugly and disgraceful. It came to mean to feel shame, be ashamed, to be confounded, or be disconcerted.

The Father affirms this reality by expressing the negative and then refuting it. By so doing there is the implication, that the actions of people could be a source of embarrassment to their Creator.

But the Father is not ashamed of His children. Why? The Father does not make junk, nor does He make mistakes. He is well aware of our foibles and knows that we are but dust.

Psalms 103:10-14

 10 He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve.

 11 For his unfailing love toward those who fear him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth.

 12 He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.

 13 The LORD is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who fear him.

 14 For he knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust.

We are just dust, but we are His dust. His response to our shortcomings and sins is love. He seeks restoration and sweet intimacy with each child of the King.¯\_()_/¯

When I am weak ∙

When I am weak

For when I am weak, then I am strong. – 2 Corinthians 12:10

2 Corinthians 12:7-10

 7 Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger from Satan to torment me and keep me from becoming proud.

 8 Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away.

 9 Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.

 10 That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Mark was a ten-year-old boy who wanted to study judo despite the fact that he had lost his left arm in an automobile accident.

Mark began his lessons with an aged Japanese judo master and was doing well. But after three months had passed and he had only been taught one move, he questioned the master. “This is the only move you’ll ever need to know,” was the master’s reply.

Perplexed, but trusting, Mark kept training and several months later entered his first tournament. Surprising himself, Mark won the first two matches. The third match was more difficult, but soon his opponent became impatient and charged. Mark deftly used his lone move to win the match. He was now in the finals, but this time his opponent was much larger, much stronger, and far more experienced. Mark was nervous, and it was showing in the match. The referee, concerned for Mark’s welfare, called a time-out. He was about to stop the seemingly imbalanced match when Mark’s master intervened, “Let him continue.”

The match resumed, and Mark’s opponent made a critical mistake. Instantly, Mark used his move to pin him, winning the match and the tournament. On the way home, Mark reviewed all his matches and moves with his master, finally summoning the courage to ask the question on his mind: “How did I win the tournament with only one move?”

“You won for two reasons,” the judo master answered. “First, you’ve almost mastered one of the most difficult throws in all judo. And second, the only known defense for that move is for your opponent to grab your left arm.”

Mark’s weakness had become his greatest strength (Harvey Mackay).

Each of the Father’s children has an assortment of weaknesses. Weaknesses may be physical drawbacks or emotional limitations. Added to this are the struggles and vicissitudes of everyday life. We often feel overwhelmed, defeated, and powerless. It is easy to become ashamed, embarrassed, frightened, angry, or even depressed.

The Father uses adversity and weakness in almost unimaginable ways. Our lack of power, our weakness, is actually an opportunity to experience the Father’s power.


The word of God is full of seeming contradictions. If you want to be first, you must be last. If you want to save your life, you must lose it. And if you want to be strong, you must glory in your weakness (Stanley).

Father thank You that You are intimately involved in all the circumstances of my life. Encourage me to develop the right attitudes and responses You desire for me.


William Wilberforce, who led the fight to abolish slavery in the British Empire, was physically weak and frail, but he had deep faith in God. Boswell said of him, “I saw what seemed to me a shrimp become a whale” (MacDonald).

If our natural human instincts and reactions are inadequate, with what should replace them? What should be our new paradigm for living?

The Father is working to bring balance to our lives. He is slowly but surely, inexorably, molding us, shaping us into the image of His Son. The Father is working to do away with our dependence on our limited natural resources. He wants us to depend upon Him and experience His power in our daily experience.

Consider what we know of Paul. He experienced remarkable face-to-face encounters with the living God. He was given unimaginable revelations, ability, and comprehension. He was invited and taken into heaven itself (2 Corinthians 12:2,3,10). The natural negative consequence of such remarkable privileges would be arrogant pride and boastfulness. To prevent Paul from sinning, two very grievous and overwhelming conditions became a part of his everyday life.

He was given a thorn in the flesh. The Greek word translated thorn is skolops. A skolops is frequently a pointed stake; an injurious sharp object, splinter. It may refer to “a sharp stake used for torturing or impaling” (Wiersbe).

We do not know exactly what troubled Paul, but it was some type of physical condition that caused pain and distress.

But beyond the physical was a far darker reality. Paul realized that there was a messenger of Satan at work. The Father permitted the enemy to torment Paul. The Greek word translated torment or buffet is kolaphizo. It means to strike with the fist, to beat, to mistreat, to treat roughly, to ill-treat, to afflict, to cause difficulty. Was Paul the apostle experiencing demonic harassment on top of everything else?

Paul’s thorn in the flesh was given not to make him a lesser man, but a greater man. Yet his greatness was found in his weakness. His perspective transformation is the model for us all. No matter what our personal difficulties, sufferings, hardships, or traumas may be, we can apply the same lessons that Paul learned and be encouraged.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10

 9 My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness. Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.

 10 Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.

¯\_()_/¯ 11-17-9

The G Factor vs. going it alone ∙

The G Factor vs. going it alone

Two people are better than one. – Ecclesiastes 4:9

Ecclesiastes 4:8-13

 8 This is the case of a man who is all alone, without a child or a brother, yet who works hard to gain as much wealth as he can. But then he asks himself, “Who am I working for? Why am I giving up so much pleasure now?” It is all so meaningless and depressing.

 9 Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed.

 10 If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.

 11 Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone?

 12 A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.

 13 It is better to be a poor but wise youth than an old and foolish king who refuses all advice.

In 2019, the population of the United States of America was about 330,000,000. According to the Census Bureau, more Americans are living alone. This reflects a global trend. The proportion of Americans who live alone has grown steadily since the 1920s: 1920 – 5%, 1990 – 25%, 2018 – 35%.

The G factor is shorthand for general intelligence or just intelligence. In the past, intelligence was considered simply knowledge and skills. But more recently intelligence is defined as mental capability that involves the ability to reason, plan, solve problems, think abstractly, comprehend complex ideas, learn from experience, and learn quickly.  When individuals work together as a whole, a “group mind” develops.

Are two heads better than one?

Ecclesiastes 4:9 Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed.

Solomon, the author of Ecclesiastes, paints a rather dark, bleak, and somewhat meaningless picture of being alone. Loneliness often involves lots of hard work but diminishing rewards.

Ecclesiastes 4:8 This is the case of a man who is all alone, without a child or a brother, yet who works hard to gain as much wealth as he can. But then he asks himself, “Who am I working for? Why am I giving up so much pleasure now?” It is all so meaningless and depressing.

Solomon has in mind an individual who was driven to succeed in life. Now he is king of the mountain, but all alone. He is reflective. Endless toil without satisfaction is ultimately an unhappy business. One thinks of John D. Rockefeller, one of the richest men of his age, when asked, “How much money is enough?” He responded, “Just a little bit more.” How much is enough? If Rockefeller always needed a little more, who will ever have enough?

But Solomon, in his great wisdom offered an alternative. Two are better than one. Working side-by-side, wise people are more effective. They get more “bang for the buck.” Achievement is often accompanied by increased productivity and reward, contentment, and help in times of need.  Work is sweeter and more successful when done with another.  Working well together is a life skill well worth pursuing.

Life is full of challenges! Given the choice, why face them alone? Originally, who first advocated that going through life alone was not a good idea? The answer is familiar but surprisingly just off the radar.

Genesis 2:18 The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper who is just right for him.”

Ecclesiastes 4:9 Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed.

According to this simple comparison, it is better to share our life and work than to try to make it on our own. With very few exceptions, the Father did not design children of the King to go it alone!

But this is more than simply talking about having a mate. This is about finding the person tailor-made for us. Togetherness is better than loneliness. Connection is better than competition (Ryken). This applies to long-term, life-long relationships and short-term partnerships, and more casual ad hoc alliances or projects. The “buddy system” is the Father’s plan for life. Such relationships provide practical and emotional support, strength, and reassurance.

The Father rarely calls on children of the King to “go it alone” in their walk with Him. We need each other, not only to receive help and encouragement but to give it as well (Stanley).


In the challenges of life, having someone to help us is a gift from the Father.

Father thank You for putting people into my life who have my back. Encourage me to reach out and help others in need.


Ecclesiastes is a long lament about living life for this world only, or as Solomon puts it “under the sun.” Living life with solely an earthbound view is cruelly dissatisfying. We toil and strive, yet we remain haunted by a vague sense that we’re missing something (Tim Gustafson).

Against this grim background, Solomon offers simple, homespun, wisdom: companionship is better than loneliness. Companions are there for each other and help each other out. They provide warmth and comfort. There is strength in numbers, and they defend one another. A threefold cord describes a rope or cord formed of three strands twisted or plaited together. A rope with three strands is harder to break than a rope with two.

“It is not in numbers, but in unity, that our great strength lies” (Thomas Paine).

Ecclesiastes 4:10-13

 10 If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.

 11 Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone?

 12 A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.

 13 It is better to be a poor but wise youth than an old and foolish king who refuses all advice.

How does the old king demonstrate that he is foolish? He refuses to take advice. He is inflexible and unwilling to learn. Sadly, as we age, many not only become rigid in body but also in mind. The old king’s problem was not simply age but being closed to the advice and counsel of others. Is this king the individual who chose to go it all alone?

This need not be the case. Regardless of our age, we should be willing and open to admonition, correction, and instruction. We should seek it out.

2 Timothy 3:16 All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.

¯\_()_/¯ 10-28-9

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