AN EAGLE IN ME . . . PREPARED TO REIGN!

Doing Today . . . GOD’S Way!
Weekly Bible Study Series by Cindy Lynne

Ahhhh . . . the mountains . . .

When you look at a mountain, imagine in your hearts how long would it be before that mountain should be removed by a little bird coming but once every thousand years, and carrying away but one grain of the dust of it at once: the mountain would at length be removed that way, and brought to an end; but eternity will never end. Suppose with respect to all the mountains of the earth, no, with respect to the whole globe itself: the grains of dust of which the whole of it is made up are not infinite; and therefore the last grain would, at length, come to be carried away, as above: yet eternity would be, in effect, but beginning. Thomas Boston (1676–1732)

Where shall I live . . . for eternity? With Whom? And how shall I go?

Jesus . . . who lives and reigns for eternity . . . He, who first gave up all and died for us, asks us now to follow suit. He asks us now to walk toward our own death . . . daily and by choice. He asks us to die . . . in order to live.

Hmmmm . . . Heavy.

GOD, Himself, chose this very path, this one that He now invites us to walk. He chose to go to the Garden of Gethsemane and the cross. He chose to walk a path He knew led to death. He chose it knowing that it would likewise give life. Life to all. We have an invitation, from the Lord of Lord’s, to walk with Him along a path where dying to and for others at our own expense is a chosen journey. A journey of death that leads to life. Life, as we cannot reason it to be. Not a journey of self-gratification and the promise of earthly love, happiness and ease, but a path that mimics the one our Lord walked. He is the first fruit. This journey of choice is a journey of death; an often painful one as we learn to die to ourselves, and yet somehow, amazingly we sense . . . we know . . . we are being ushered into . . . life.

Life that will unfold slowly and grow over the years, something akin to a rose as it begins to blossom. Step by step, gradually the ugliness of selfishness and sin dies; piece by piece . . . often through confusion and searching and crying out. In choosing this, we choose to walk a path where we will feel pain, just as Jesus did when He chose to leave comfort, glory, power and the presence of perfect love to be mocked and beaten and eventually crucified for us. Not only will we feel the pain that Satan brings to all who live in this world. We will also feel the pain that comes when we choose to die to our wants, our desires, our lusts. He chose to travel a path he didn’t have to walk. Shall we do less? Less than . . . Jesus? And yet, expect the reward?

We may often feel abandoned, and alone, as we walk this chosen path. He felt the same. Now risen though, He waits . . . as we will also wait for that glorious final day when He will be given the keys to the kingdom. There He will reign forever . . . as will we who have died and risen again in Him. There we will reign, with all the saints in glory, beside our King. And so . . . just as He, though being a son, had to learn obedience . . . so must we; obedience that will prepare us to reign in Heaven for eternity.

A beautiful analogy exists, perhaps, between how God teaches us and how an eagle teaches her young.

We agree to die to ourselves and to live for Him when we accept Christ. At first it feels warm. It feels safe as we learn of His love and His mercy; as we learn that He died to set us free and give us eternal life. Our burden of guilt is gone, and we rest in His presence and feed on His word. We feel cozy, all nestled down snug in our nest and He brings us food and we chirp . . . while God watches over us and waits as does the eagle over her babies. He has cared for us but we are now ready for growth. She has cared for her babes and they, too, are ready for their next step. At first, we were as the little eaglets, but the time came for more . . . much more! Yet, somehow we must be shaken out of the comfort of the nest. If we are to be strong and powerful . . . we must be taught how to fly. Just as the momma eagle watches and guards her eaglets until she knows they are ready, that they are strong enough . . . God watches over us and then . . . at just the right time – they shake up the nest.

The eaglet is, one day, suddenly, plucked from the comfort and safety and warmth of the nest and is out in the open sky, seemingly unprotected, on the wings (not held in the arms) of his momma; not even knowing how to “hold on for dear life,” as she now tips her wing and drops him, letting him free fall through the air. He has no idea what is happening or what to do! And, just in time . . . she swoops underneath him, catches him on her back and takes him up again . . . for another round. This time, perhaps he thinks it will all be okay – it was an accident. Surely, we are on our way back to the nest and this nightmare will be over . . . when suddenly mom tips again . . . and down he falls . . . . aahhhh . . . . And again, there she is . . . catching him. One more time . . . and again . . . until . . . finally, he begins to flap his wings. Still not able to fly – flapping and struggling . . . she is there, flying above him in close proximity; watching. Waiting. Waiting until just the right moment when she knows he has endured all he can handle, for this time around, and now must be rescued. He is growing stronger. He is learning what to do. When he is unable to quite make it – she soars down, sweeps him on to her back and keeps him from death. She is teaching him. She is teaching him what to do to survive; what he must do to grow; what he must do to soar. She picks him up and carries him on her wing; tipping and letting him fall! Letting him flail . . . each time knowing he is learning through the trial, the trauma and the fear. And knowing . . . He will eventually fly higher than any other bird. He will fly faster. He will be stronger. His eyesight keener . . . but for now, he must learn. He has to be taught to trust that he can, and will, catch the wind. He must strive and . . .  then trust . . .  in order to fly.

Perhaps God is carrying us on His wings and at just the right moment, tips them. Maybe He knows that this is the only way we will learn what we need to know in order to soar. Whatever we are experiencing, He is there; watching, waiting . . . swooping underneath to catch us, usually, at the very last second . . . though we imagine we are careening out of control. When the pain feels so great we think we will surely, any moment, be crushed against a rock or lie breathless on the ground . . . there He is – moving swiftly into place to rescue us, just in the nick of time – and He carries, then, on His wings. And we begin to learn. There is pain and great fear in learning to die to self, but eventually trusting Him brings safety and strength; though we can not feel it or see it as it seems we are randomly free-falling from safety. But there, we learn to “flap our wings,” even though we only flap because we are forced . . . at first. He helps us learn to choose to die to self and deal with fear and there, in the open air, we learn to soar for Him. He will help us by shaking the nest and dropping us into air, seemingly alone – terrified and in pain, but not so. For He is waiting and watching and protecting as we learn to trust. We only needed to have chosen the path – to be born again in Him.

I feel sometimes that I am like an eaglet. I am certain I know just how he must feel when his comfortable, warm nest is shaken and a wild screech is heard – he is grabbed up and the next thing he knows he is falling. He must be wondering where his mother is! What is happening and why! He must surely feel abandoned . . . even betrayed. Where are you? He must cry inside, be terrified! I have felt those feelings . . . and wondered . . . and cried. I don’t like my nest shaken and I most certainly would not choose to free fall without a net or parachute. But, I must learn to trust and, perhaps, this is the only way. We must learn to trust that God will catch us before we plummet to the ground and that he will teach us to find the wind and how to soar. We learn to trust the wind and our wings and that what God says will work . . . will work. As we learn, through the difficulties and trials, we learn it is safe to obey when it doesn’t make sense. There we learn to give, instead of take, for the benefit of those we love . . . for those we don’t know . . . for those who spitefully use us . . . for our enemies. Only with extreme trust are we strong enough to continue to choose to walk to our death. We become able to choose paths that lead to death to self and know we will ultimately be okay . . . be better than okay . . . because He has been our teacher. Then, we will be, as Jesus was . . . perfected through obedience.

Perhaps, the circumstances and trials, the temptations, loss and pain in this life are so we can be prepared to reign with Him forever. Perhaps we must do as He did, so that we . . . can effectively do one day . . . what He said we will do. Be seated with Him in Glory. Judge the angels. Sit securely as the fate of the world is forever sealed!

I will one day leave this body of death. I sometimes envision how it will be – I, gliding upward . . . the real, the deepest part of me, catching the wind and soaring upward with Jesus in sight, my heart filled and overflowing with joy and love . . . shedding this earthly body as it gently falls off like a chiffon cloth, waving softly and gently dissipating as it floats away behind me. I am now prepared to receive my new and eternal body and there to reign forever with Jesus, the Lord God, Almighty! For I have been prepared . . . prepared to reign!

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Hebrews 5:7-10 While he lived on earth, anticipating death, Jesus cried out in pain and wept in sorrow as he offered up priestly prayers to God. Because he honored God, God answered him. Though he was God’s Son, he learned trusting-obedience by what he suffered, just as we do. Then, having arrived at the full stature of his maturity and having been announced by God as high priest in the order of Melchizedek, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who believingly obey him. (The Message)

Deut. 32: 11-13 He was like an eagle that stirs up its nest. It hovers over its little ones. It spreads out its wings to catch them. It carries them on its feathers.

Isaiah 40:31 . . . But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles . . . (NKJ)

Daniel 15: 9-15 “As I looked, “thrones were set in place, and the Ancient of Days took his seat. His clothing was as white as snow; the hair of his head was white like wool. His throne was flaming with fire, and its wheels were all ablaze. A river of fire was flowing, coming out from before him. Thousands upon thousands attended him; ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him. The court was seated, and the books were opened. “Then I continued to watch because of the boastful words the horn was speaking. I kept looking until the beast was slain and its body destroyed and thrown into the blazing fire. (The other beasts had been stripped of their authority, but were allowed to live for a period of time.) “In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed. (NKJ)

I Cor. 6:1- 4 . . . The day is coming when the world is going to stand before a jury made up of followers of Jesus. If someday you are going to rule on the world’s fate, wouldn’t it be a good idea to practice on some of these smaller cases? Why, we’re even going to judge angels! . . . (The Message)
Daniel 15:18 But the saints of the Most High will receive the kingdom and will possess it forever—yes, for ever and ever.’ (NKJ)
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Prayer:

Father,

You are holy and I bless your name. You are magnificent and live high above where even the eagles soar. You created the eagle in all his majesty and I thank you for his beauty and for the lessons I can learn from the nature you designed. Shake my nest and drop me from the heights again, if need be, for I know you will be there to catch me. I know that you will not let me go through any more than I can handle and that you are watching and waiting to keep me safe. Prepare me to live eternally and reign with you in Heaven. I pray that you will teach me to die. Teach me to die to myself in every way. Keep me on the path, the path to death to myself – Oh that I may die so others may live. That I may die so that You are all they see. Forgive me for my lack of trust in you, for my selfishness; or focusing on myself and what I want and what I think. Make me humble and trusting – full of faith in you. Teach me to trust you in every way. Teach me to obey you when you say to give up myself, my wants, my desires, my longings, my “rights.” Let me believe and act on the belief that when you say to do something you will be with me to the end. Strengthen my faith, my trust in you. Build me up and send me out! Send me out soaring with wings like eagles . . . strong and powerful in you, claiming the lost from the enemy. Prepare me, Lord, to reign with you forever! Hallelujah! In Jesus most High and Holy Name I pray . . . Amen

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Practical Application:

Listen to “Above All” by Michael W. Smith – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zaP442FKwoA

When considering the following questions – ask God to reveal your own heart.
Do not treat this lightly and blow over the top of it. We are not talking about singing songs and going to breakfast with the bible study group. We are called to die to self so that we
will ultimately live and reign with Him. Let’s don’t think about what we do that is good, let’s dig deeper and find out where we have not died, what we won’t let go of . . . or get ready for your nest to be shaken . . . and to do some more free falling. I am doing
the same. We will be prepared.

1. How can you “die’ in ways that emulate the life that Jesus led?
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2. In what areas of your life do you need to die to yourself?
a.______________________ b. _______________c. __________________
d _____________________e. ________________f. __________________

3. Who can pray with you about this? For revelation and for the strength to give up what He is calling you to give up?
_______________________ ______________________
4. Do you trust Him? ________

5. Do you trust Him . . . completely? ________

6. What will you DO about the areas you need to die to yourself in?
What steps will actually take? (Faith without works is dead.)
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7. Who would benefit from your death to self . . . Death to YOUR desires, your “rights”?
Spouse ________Children _______ Parents _______ Boss ________ Friend ______Church Member _______ Business Partner _______ Neighbor _______Enemy_____

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*All scriptures NKJ unless otherwise noted
**Contact me at cindylynne.wordpress.com or be my friend on Facebook!
***Book Release – Coming Soon –TO THE WIRE. . . With God, Almighty by Cindy Lynne – A true story of hope and inspiration . . . of God’s daily provision after incredible losses. A journey from Michigan to Wyoming with no money, no plans and no one . . . except the God of the universe! Hear of His answers to prayers, His supernatural intervention and lessons learned!

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