Welcome to Home Shalom!

Welcome to Home Shalom and Shalom Farm. We pray your visit here be blessed. We are learning to walk in the Ways (Torah) of our Father YHWH and follow Y'shua, His Messiah until He returns to "set things straight". We call it a "Messi-Life". Our walk is neither tidy nor perfect, but it is filled with passion, devotion and desire to serve our King. We are learning to be humble servants, and to be good stewards of the things that He has entrusted to us: His Word, our marriage, our children, our family, our community, our health, and our farm. Hitch your horse and stay a while--our door is always open!







Saturday, April 2, 2016

Forgiveness


Image result for forgiveness

As Believers, in order for us to function effectively in Yah's Kingdom, it is essential - required even, that we understand and live out lifestyle of forgiveness.  This very thing is what has brought us into the Kingdom and i believe it is also what "keeps us there".  It is core of Who Yah is and what His plan is for us in relation to Him and each other.  It is the core to Biblical love, which covers a multitude of sins.  It will keep us in line with His will and position us to be true ambassadors for Him.  If we can't 'get this', the feasts, the commandments, and even our profession of faith is fruitless. I have been talking with a dear sister out of state on this topic and have been sharing the things Yah has taught me in this. These are things that we (Ben and Pamela) believe and choose to live. What I am about to share is my laymen's terms -from one heart to another - as Yah has taught me consistently over the last 30 years of my walk with him. These are core things of our faith, that I want to make sure my children understand and practice well. There is a law of forgiveness, it is built into Yah's design and crucial for us to GET if we are to walk in the fullness of His Way. This coupled with love and obedience are the core principals that set us apart.  We should be master lovers, forgivers, and "cooperators" (obedience) with Yah. Test this sweet family.  If anything needs clarity, please ask.  If anyone has trouble walking this out, please ask (publicly or privately).
 There are many misconceptions and lies around forgiving that we might need to chip away.  Lets start there:

  1. I can’t forgive.   - This is not true.  Forgiveness is a choice.  If you are coherent enough to make any choice – you are able to forgive.
  2. What they did was too vicious, wicked or deep to forgive.  – This is not true.  The transgression may be absolutely heinous but Yah has designed forgiveness as the ultimate act of love.  Forgiveness does not release them from judgement, but it does release the FORGIVER/victim from it in a way.  We are judged on the matter of the heart as well as our actions.  The act of forgiving disconnects us from the incident.  Before we forgive, we are “married” to the tragedy.  We have burned it onto out brain through thought connected to heightened emotions and that bad situation has branded us.  We have taken it into our identity.  Into who we are.  This is highly destructive!   Our emotions (the heart is deceptively wicked) trick us into thinking that doing this protects us, but the opposite takes place.  It kills us like drips of slow poison!!  Forgiveness is Yah’s precious design to create the door fromvictimization/pain/anger/powerlessness/fear/vengefulness/trauma loops/sickness/pride (all things bad and destructive) to allow us to enter into embracing ourselves honestly/ others/ trust/love/Yah/ freedom (all things good in Yah!)!   This is required of the transgressor as well to process whatever it is who brought him to His place of transgression. 
  3. They do not deserve forgiveness.  Yah is just – justice will be done according to each of our hearts! No matter who we are – victim or transgressor.  If our hearts are hardened (and they are when we do not forgive) We face the same judgement as the one who did the awful thing.  We do not want to join them in the place by hardening our own hearts – because then we will be judged for that!
  4. I missed my chance to forgive them, because they are dead or gone.  Not True.  Forgiveness is something we do internally.  It is ideal to be communicated to transgressor because forgiveness has the power to save everyone it touches.  However, forgiveness is really between us and Yah above all.  It is complete surrender of the incident and trusting Yah that His justice will be sufficient.  We disconnect ourselves from ‘it’.  We have no claim to it and more.  We give up that control as a result – we are set free.
  5. Forgiving them won’t change anything.  This is not true.  It changes the most important thing.  Our internal wellness.  I agree that it may not change consequences or results of the damage (for instance a rape victim that might contract a disease or baby – for instance- those things are still there.)  However, it does change our hearts and our ability to live life there after in a healthy way!  This no small thing! I also agree that it may not change THEM.  But again – that is not for us to do.  We are way out of line if that is our focus. Yah has given us dominion over ourselves on internal matters - Not others.  That person is accountable to Yah himself – the same as us.  Forgiveness allows us to release the heart of vengeance that requires anything from that person to complete your healing. (Note:  It is true and wise however to remove ourselves (and family) from a toxic or dangerous situation.  These are two different topics.) 
  6. If I forgive them, it is like I am saying what happened was OK.  This is not true.  If you forgive them – you are deciding not to torture yourself over it anymore!  Holding unforgiveness damages the victim the most!  When we refuse to forgive, negative emotions cement themselves into our being and cause us further heart break in life.  We carry this incident with us consciously or unconsciously.  Our unforgiveness traps us and yokes us to that painful situation and that person. The transgression should have its own identity separate from us.  That transgression should not be embedded into who we are, but that is what we do when we refuse to forgive.  If we refuse to let it go,  it eventually becomes apart whowe are and how we operate. Then we essentially become a part of the problem.  But it we can separate ourselves from it and "rise above it" by keeping the Spiritual Law of Forgiveness - something supernatural happens.  It does not condone it - in fact it allows light to shin into the situation!
  7. They need to do something first, before I forgive them.  This is also untrue.  Yah has built in the ability for us to be set free from any transgression – ours or someone elses through our act of surrender TO HIM.  This is not conditional upon anyone else’s actions or heart conditions.  Forgiveness is between you and Yah.  No one can stop that process but you.  This thought is one that demands control over another.  We need to realize that this spirit transferred over to us during the transgression and we accepted it (consciously or unconsciously).  When we do that, we actually welcome that same spirit into us that drove the other person to do what they did to us.  Ironic right?!  But true.  We fell into satan’s trap (so to speak).  We took the bait –now we are hooked into the controlling spirit of ‘conditional love’ and unforgiveness too and the enemy is reeling us into himself and his ways out or the safety of the living waters of Yah. However, it is at that time that we need to choose whether we are mere animals being lead to the frying pan to be cooked on the alter of a false god OR if we are children of the living El, who will employ the tools ALREADY given to us to break the line! 

The TRUTH and power of forgiveness.

  1. Forgiveness is a choice.  It really is that simple.  We choose it (or not)!  We decide to release a transgression or not.
  2. Forgiveness transforms people from the inside out. It changes our hearts and minds.  It positions us to walk/live in love, mercy, grace, kindness and wisdom.  It equips and empowers us to avoid future situations and deal with the ones that arise in honor and power – without regret.   It sharpens our discernment and strengthens our resolve.   It allows us to see others more compassionately. It suites us up in the armor of Yah.  Which causes offence to slip right off our surface like eggs on Teflon – it never gets a chance to stick!!
  3. Forgiveness breaks chains that bind us to trauma.    Where there is light – there can not be darkness.  Where there is forgiveness, there can not be offence or any of its trappings.  Where there is love, there can not hate.  Where there is peace their can not be anger. Where there is faith their can not be doubt.
  4. Forgiveness heals.  Because love is activated and the ties to wickedness are broken – the mind and body respond positively!  Instead of producing and reinforcing negative stress chemicals, new thoughts and chemicals are produced, which also result in positive feelings and so the cycle goes in the right direction now.  Instead of break down,  repair and restoration happens in the mind, in the physical body, in the emotions and in the spirit. This extends into our relationships and changed our whole life.
 Recognizing unforgiveness:
  1. Unforgiveness destroys people from the inside out.  Our negative thoughts can be conscious or unconscious.  This really important to understand.  Negative thoughts and feelings can turn us into “bad people”.  Basically we choose, consciously or unconsciously, to believe a lie and then that lie festers and grows and branches out to feed a myriad of other lies.  The fruits of this are offense, bitterness, anger/violence, fear/anxiety, controlling/ obsessive/impatient behaviors, instability, dysfunctional relationships, sickness/disease, addictions of every kind and it is also the core to depression and insanity.  These things can be a challenge to over come.  However, Yah has given us the ability to take domination over this!  
  1. Unforgiveness is often the default.  It is our flesh’s response to pain. If one is not in the habit of choosing and practicing forgiveness than the human nature is to automatically inclined for offence which leads to unforgiveness, which leads to hardened hearts (a.k.a. bitterness).
  2. Unforgiveness is bondage.  The cycle of unforgiveness is a snare.  The more we thrash around in it (by indulging it or repeating it) the tighter it gets and the more entangled in it we become.
  3. Identify Unforgiveness.  Our thoughts, words and feelings give us away. Are you thinking, speaking and feeling negatively toward a person?  Does the mention, or sight or association of that person bring about a negative thought or feeling?  You may notice that you are antsy, anxious, vengeful thoughts or impatience with others.  You may notice your hands sweat, you get a knot in your stomach, a head (or body) aches surfaces, or you may get tired or your heart may start racing, you teeth clench, etc..  You may suspect the involvement, guilt or integrity of others who interact with that person.  The list goes on – these are sure signs that there is unforgiveness present.  If any one of these things, or a combination of them or similar things surface at the thought, sight or mention of person – you are carrying unforgiveness. 
  1. Projecting doom.  Have you ever found yourself projecting doom in relation to another?  You can run scenarios in your head about how awful something is going be regarding them.  You just “know” what will happen – and its not going to be good.  You predict the worse – and you may even be right.  This is a sure sign of unforgiveness in you – even if you are right.  This is evidence that you have run this unforgiveness record in your brain several times – you have it memorized. It has become apart of you – you know it like the back of your hand.  This reality also shows itself when you find yourself arranging your choices and actions in a way that avoids a person or instigate a person (depending your personality)around the projection of impending doom. This is a result of fear of coping, which can also be symptom of unforgiveness.

Practical Application and Understanding:

1. Here is the physical mechanics or spiritual truth:   This physical and spirit connection is a recent discovering for me as Yah has led me to understand a little more about how He has created our bodies.  Now we are going to touch on the understanding and application of mind of matter in Yah’s design. This applies to both conscious and unconscious thoughts/feelings. This is  dealing with the thoughts, feelings  and experiences we encounter or generate that need to be processed by our brain.  Our brains have to decide what to do with them and where to put them.  Our brain is constantly organizing information. 
We can basically break down our brain into three major parts.  For simplicity, I am going to call them thinking, feeling and being.  They all work together to process and store our environment’s information.  When we encounter a thought or experience – this thought or experience generates a chemical (or series of chemicals) in our body, that in turn creates heightened emotions and feelings.  These heightened emotions and feelings generate more thoughts in that direction, which create more (stress or healing) hormones/chemicals, which create more feelings and then this process loops and loops and loops.  This looping creates synapses in our brain.  (A synopsis is a when two or more neurons connect to each another to form a larger bond in the form of a molecules, these molecules cling together manifesting into a judgement, association, or memory.  These judgements, associations and memories create our understanding of our environment, life and the world.  This forms the lense of which we see.  This creates our belief system which ultimately shapes our actions.)  The more synapses are reinforced the stronger they get in conviction.  The stronger it gets the bigger influence it has on our entire perception of our existence.  Does this make sense?  If we are on a negative feed loop – those will be our results.  If we are on a positive, holy, righteous, godly loop those will be our results.  It is how Yah designed these glorious machines we live in!  That is why He has given us so many guidelines and precautions of how to maintain it in good health through His Torah.  That is why Y’shua ‘s sacrifice and teachings are so very crucial to our salvation!  Does this make sense? Forgiveness sets us free to be in Yah’s Creative will – plugged into his creative spirit, if you will.  We are free to design our lives for the better within His framework of truth.  We do this while embracing, producing and basking in true  love, forgiveness, kindness, mercy and grace in our lives. This is His Way! He requires that we CHOOSE LIFE.  (He has placed before us blessings and curses – right?!)

2.  To Forgive:  We make a choice to honestly and whole heartedly forgive someone/something.  What does that look like? 

  • We lay down that thing/person and disassociate ourselves from it.  We no longer own that painful event – we give it Yah and step away from it.  It has not hold on us. 
  • IN doing so – we let go of all the crutches, all the excuses, all the jusfications connected to it.  All the behaviors, feelings and thought patterns that have been associated to it in the past, get surrendered with it. 
  • We give up the right to hold it over them or to make them suffer/pay for what they did. 
  • We surrender our negative thoughts and feelings. 
  • We surrender trying to control the matter or influence others in regards to it.
  • We disconnect and disassociate with it.  You owe it nothing and it owes you nothing.
  • You have surrendered it to Yah to handle and you trust Him fully in it. 
  • You do not need to check in on Yah’s progress or see if he needs your help in the matter.  It is surrendered – you are surrendered – permanently, no backsies. 

That is forgiveness. 

If that is not complete and your conditions or definition leaves a few of those things to remain, it is not honestsurrender/forgiveness.  There is still an element of deceit remaining in you in the form of self preservation, control or self defense that you will not trust to Yah.  In this case, I would go back to prayer and offer those idols up that were hidden under your robes, “just in case you need them” later.  Yah is no fool- you are not hiding anything from him – you are just deceiving yourself or others when you do that.  This is a perversion. True forgiveness requires honesty and transparency between you and The Father.  Deceit will lead to a hardened heart. 

How do you know when forgiveness is complete?  You will know that you have arrived at true and complete forgiveness when the thought, sight, feelings of that person or event can arise and you are not emotionally or physically effected by it, and when thoughts of compassion for that person arise.  When you think and feel disconnected from the negative aspects of that person or event and it is replaced with love. This CAN in an instant – but if it doesn’t this is evidence of limited surrender on the “forgiver’s” part.  In other words the “forgiver” is holding something back and is not entering into the process with full trust in Yah and for justice.  This is a result of a hardened heart on the “forgiver’s” part.  I would encourage being deliberate to pressing into the process until the forgiveness is complete.  If not – you will be bound to unforgiveness and it sill still control you and be toxic to your health and your other relationships.

3. Learn to forgive – before it is deserved. When an offense occurs – it is wise to choose forgiveness even before it is requested, or suggested.  It may never be “asked for”.  The person who assaulted you may never repent or believe he did anything wrong. He might even justify what was done and brag about it!  That has nothing to do with your choice to forgive him.  Forgiveness is not based on someone deserving it or requesting it. It is based on your willingness to release it and disconnect yourself from it!  It is a spiritual mind matter.  The world would teach you differently.  The world would say that forgiveness come when someone deserves it.  It would say you make ‘m grovel for it.  You make sure you see that they have changed before you even think about forgiving something.  That – is a lie.  That is no Yah’s design. Yah forgives us to give us first, which gives us the opportunity to change!  (Whether we take that or not – is all on us.  But the forgiveness give us that choice.) Y’shua offered forgiveness in the MIDST of being beaten.  Y’shua did not postpone healing after people “proved it to him”.  No-  he healed them or prophesied over them, declared them forgiven and said – go forth and sin no more.  They were forgiven first.  We see this pattern again and again in Scripture – THIS is Yah’s way.  His way is higher than mans.

4.  Identify triggers and false thought patterns.  After we go through the honest process of full forgiveness and surrender to Yah and you trust  His justice and do not need to employ your own.  Sometimes, long term or especially traumatic instances – unforgiveness can rear its ugly head again.  (Mat 12:43-45) We can nip this in the bud before it gets out of hand again and expresses itself by an outburst of some sort.  So after we have “cleaned house”   we are careful to guard our hearts from anything that would feed that old pattern of unforgiveness.  We are keen to audit our thoughts, feelings and physical responses  (remember these our signs that give our true spiritual condition away).  We rebuke anything in us that is inconsistent with forgiveness, love and freedom.  We pray to Yah for strength courage and faithfulness.  We replace the lies that are trying to sneak in, with the affirming promises of Yah.

5.  Establish new thought patterns, feelings and experiences.    You will have many opportunities to practice forgiveness,  I can assure you!  We are tested on all of Yah’s Kingdom skills! Choose forgiveness as a rule. Align yourself into a lifestyle of forgiveness.   It is required of us as believers. This my friends, is  a salvation issue!!!   This is very closely married to a lifestyle of gratitude.  If we are gracious (grateful) about all that which Yah has blessed us with, as a POSTURE, a way of being and we practice forgiveness as lifestyle.  Then things that used to set us off, don’t anymore, because we do not need to define ourselves by those things anymore. We use a different measuring stick. We will experience the abundance of kingdom living to its fullest and be used in ways we never imagined.  We will be like ice breakers for the Kingdom of Yah; strong, dependable, consistent and powerful in Him.  The world will suggest that walking in forgiveness is a sign of weakness…but you will find out and others will eventually also see – that is a sign of supernatural strength!
 I pray that we could all embrace a lifestyle of love, forgiveness and obedience (cooperation/surrender).  If we do, our individual lives and collective lives as families that make up a community will glorify Yah and transcend our wildest dreams!

Saturday, March 21, 2015

First Fruits to Shavuot: The Heart of His Feast Cycle



http://www.messilife.com/First%20Fruits%20to%20Shavuot.pdf

The link above will download the actual teaching.   The notes below will set the premise.

I've gotten so much positive feedback on the Pesach vs. Passover study, so I decided to share the notes from the "First Fruits to Shavuot" study we did last year too.   Although this is essentially a powerpoint turned into a PDF, I think there are enough notes in the fine-print to get the idea of where I am going here.   I promise I will put this in a more independent format that breaks down the ideas deeper and more succinctly, but for those who have had experience with the Feasts and a basic understanding of Hebraic thinking, I'm hoping the visuals and notes will speak for themselves.

The premise is this: First Fruits is not a "feast" unto itself...and neither is the day of Shavuot.   They are the beginning and ending of a 50-day-long Feast that begins with the theme of "salvation" and ends with the celebration of "perfection".   Shavuot is a plural word that means "weeks", so we need to paying attention weekly (and daily) to the lessons he has for us during all 7 weeks (49 days plus one), and not just routinely phone-in some "omer counting prayers" as we wait for the big event at the end.   

None of the feasts stand alone, all seven are stops along the roadmap of YHWH's plan...teaching us crucial principles IN THE ORDER that they occur in our lives and in prophecy.   The Feast of Weeks needs to be looked at as the heart of the feasts...as they are literally CENTRAL to his plan.   I think we've also made the error of looking at Shavuot as the "giving of the 10 commandments" when the real culmination is not that event...but the celebration of the Mosaic Covenant with all 70 elders on the top of Mt. Sinai--eating a covenant meal in the very presence of YHWH!

Towards the end of the power point, I reference 7 events that occur in the lives of our people from the moment they cross the Sea up until that collective moment on the mountain top.   The last few slides hold the briefest of sketches on notes of the "Fall Feasts", simply because it's impossible to study one feast without the context of all 7.   I'm sure many of you will notice that I have come to a less-than-traditional understanding of Yom Teruah--much of which has come through my new understanding of the Feast of Weeks.

Last year, many in our fellowship replaced their normally scheduled Torah portion with a study of each of these 7 events during 7 Sabbaths along the path to Shavuot.   We were truly blessed, and we hope you are too!

If you are used to the Jewish reckoning of the timing of Shavuot, and to the notion of "counting the omer" as the point of this feast...I'd also recommend reading our former posts on those issues too:

http://www.homeshalom.blogspot.com/2011/04/first-fruitscounting-omer-video.html

http://www.homeshalom.blogspot.com/2011/04/counting-omerdays-revised.html

Thanks as usual for growing a sojourning with us!

Ben







Saturday, February 7, 2015

Lost in Translation: Passover VS Pesach


Last year around this time many of the families that meet with us locally for fellowship and shared the Pesach meal together, also shared this study.   As most of our "discoveries" from Scripture, things are subject to change and tweaking as we learn more, but I think you will really be blessed with what we discovered here.   Because of the length and some of the Hebrew typeset, we've put the files online as PDF's that you can read or easily print:

Part 1 is a study on the Hebrew word PESACH--and how it DOESN'T mean "Passover", and what that implies for our Feast and our lives.
www.messilife.com/Pesach%20vs%20Passover%20part%201.pdf

Part 2 dives deeper into the word "Passover" and what it REALLY means.
www.messilife.com/Pesach%20word%20study%20part%202.pdf

Part 3 looks closer at the meal itself, both the original meal with Moses and the "Last Supper" with Messiah.   Was Yeshua celebrating a "seder" or was His meal something entirely different?
www.messilife.com/Pesach%20Study%20part%203.pdf

I am hopeful these teachings really stretch you as they did us!   Chag Semach!  (Have a Joyful Feast!)


Thursday, January 15, 2015

YHWH Looks on the Heart

This video brings tears to my eyes - because I know the depth of which the family believes and walks out this concept being taught in this sweet family made video.  It is made by the Coover family.  We met the Coovers in PA early in this chapter of our faithwalk.  YHWH kept crossing our paths in special ways- that did (and continue) to reach very deeply in ministering to my personal soul.  We learned right away that we shared the many things.  One of which was Yah's heart for adoption.  (we are all adopted by Him!!)  We were both walking out the early stages of our adoptive families when we first met about 8 years ago (from the time of this writing).  The Coover Family have opened their home and committed their lives to receive children out of the American domestic foster system who would not easily placed in homes.  They are children with very special needs.  YHWH is using the willing hearts of the Coovers to fill in that gap.  This is a rich and selfless life - which focuses on service, stewardship and decispleship in Yah's ways.

Enjoy this sweet video the children made. It will give a glipse into their life.  They sent me this video in an email note, with an announcement that they were on their way to Florida (from Maine) to pick up another baby whom  was being added to their family (Little baby Samuel is not in the video, becasue it was made prior to his coming home).  Their arms, hearts, home and life is devoted to that which Yah has put on their heart to do!!!!! I am blessed to call them brothers and sister.  Blessed to call them friends.


This is Kingdom living!   I realize the body has many parts and  each part has its special place.  I do not think that everyone is called to do what the Coovers do.  However, it is very impirtant that we do the part that Yah assigns for us!  I pray you are convicted, encouraged and inspired to open your hearts fully to the way that Yah is calling YOU to walk out His Gospel in fullness and how you represent His name. (No matter if or how you may pronounce it!)  To exhort you to go above and beyond "the norm" for YHWH!  To live zealously, passionatly, wholeheartedly and without reserve or care for what it may look like by the world's standards!  By doing so - your life testimony with bring Him honor and glory and your treasures will be stored (and protected) in HIM!

To learn more about the Coovers:  You may like to visit their websites -
www.LoveTheUnbornBabies.name

In Him,
 

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Weightier Matters

I would like to introduce you to the Aydlotte Family   (pictured here). I first became aware of this family several years ago - through the Momma's (Julie) blog. 
Seekingtheoldpaths.blogspot.com
We "commented", then emailed, then we met in person at a Pasach (Passover) gathering one year in KY.  I liked her and her family even more when we met in person - then in print.  :-)  Our families live states away and she too is very active with her family and in her community - so we connect when we can - sporadically, to encourage one another as Yah leads.  Both of our blogging has slowed down considerably in trade for local service. (No complaints there - ideally we always want to be sure that  the needs of our family and local community are being met first!  Right?!)

Phil (her husband) and Julie are Elders in their fellowship, in Virginia -  HODF.org. Which brings me to the purpose of my post.  :-)  Julie called me asking for us to review this teaching that she was asked to present in their fellowship.  Ben and I really appreciated (and agreed) with the message. It is wonderful to see the same wisdom and maturity unfolding in other regions, in the same way that it is in our own.  Most of us have run into (if were we not guilty of being) over zealous "Torah Keepers" swinging big sticks, at the things that Yah has shown them are not Scriptural.  It is very important that this is done in our own lives and families and that we stand firm in what Yah has shown us.  So that we can remove these false things from our things from our lives and replace them with the things that Yah determines as holy.  However, we must consider HIS people who may be in the path!  There is a balance of love, respect and mercy that comes with wisdom in Yah's ways and that often has to be learned the hard way. However, there is hope for us as a community.  There is hope that we can better represent Yah's more COMPLETE WAY of obedience, reverence, commitment, justice,  and  zealousness; WHILE AT THE SAME TIME operating in love, mercy, KINDNESS, patience, wisdom and discernment - by humbling ourselves before HIM and others in our approach to sharing the truth, as well as in our entire lifestyle!  

May we be consistent in Him.  May we be equally as passionate about truth as we are humble in our daily continence.  May they know us by our love and fruits first and our doctrines second- so that our doctrines can not be denied!  May our testimony be righteous and true. May we learn to speak when spoken through.  May we listen more to Yah's specific guidance in each instance and show our obedience in that place, to carry out what He says to do (or not do!). May we only go into battle when we are truly sent by Him.  May we develop the wisdom and discernment to know the difference! 

We thought it was timely message to be shared more broadly in The Body. People are people, but I see Yah working in the hearts of passionate zealots all over to refine us into better Ambassadors for The Kingdom, who truly represent the laws of the Kingdom WITH the heart of The King too. It is crucial that we realize that we can not truly have EITHER one without the other!  

We have linked this message below for YOUR review.  (Please comment below if Yah impresses it upon your heart to do so!)  Are you seeing a change in your home?  In your heart?  In your community? If you see any other teachings along these lines- Please link them in the comments below.

There is a power point that is shown along with the audio teaching.  It takes a couple steps to access the audio and power point separately at first. However, it is very nice to listen to the audio while viewing the power point simultaneously. (So I would recommend it!)

To access audio:
1.  Click this link- The Weightier Matters of Torah 
2.  You arrive at a white page- in the upper left hand corner you will see, "6Sep14.mp3" - click that to access the audio teaching.

To access the Power Point PDF visual:
Click  The Weightier Matters of Torah PowerPoint PDF (Just scroll down manually in pace, as you listen to the audio.)

LIKEWISE:  I would like to direct you to another post from 4 years ago - that really touched our hearts and helped deliberately shape our personal family walk and ministry - to commit to walk this WAY.  http://homeshalom.blogspot.com/2010/08/disputable-matters.html

I will leave you with this thought from Philippians 2:

So if there is any encouragement in Messiah, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.  Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.  Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.  Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Messiah Y'shua, who, though he was in the form of Elohim, did not count equality with Yah a thing to be grasped,  but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant,being born in the likeness of men.  And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.  Therefore Yah has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name,  so that at the name of Y'shua every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,  and every tongue confess that Y'Shua Messiah is Lord, to the glory of Yah the Father.  Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling,  for it is Yah who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.  Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of Yah without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Messiah I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain.  Even if I am to be poured out as a drink offering upon the sacrificial offering of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with you all.  Likewise you also should be glad and rejoice with me.



May Yah Bless You and Keep You and Shabbat Shalom,

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Q & A - Confused


I often get questions and comments about things people read on my blog.  It never occurred to me - until replying to this question below ..that these might be worth sharing. I have not listed specific Scriptures...but will if is requested/needed. So lets give it a try:

On Nov 28, 2014, at 10:58 PM, 
Q:  I see from your greeting that you are Jewish, but then I see you quote Galatians.    Does that mean you are Messianic Jews?

And does this relate to your prepping or just happens that you are both?


A: We are not Jewish - as far as I know. However, We have been grafted into Yah's (God's) family by faith in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. We believe in the whole Bible - which is a Hebrew book, and which includes a Hebrew Messiah that has come to save the "lost house of Israel" (that's what Jesus says). Yeshua (Jesus) is Yah's plan for redemption. Yah's amazing councilor drew us into devoted study of the Bible and started showing us things we never saw before. We realized we had been indoctrinated wrongly from the pulpit on many matters. (As were those standing up there preaching were in their specific seminaries and Christina Bible Colleges and denominationally influenced footnotes and commentaries.) So we started studying the Bible from beginning to end, in order and in context- trying to learn all we could about the language and culture it was from at the same time. While at the same digging deep into our own church history. This opened our eyes to many things that have been "lost" and changed in our modern version of Christianity. 

Then.... We saw The Father was bringing many other families to the surface that were going through the same thing!!! He was working in their hearts and homes (and churches) individually and collectively. We are seeing this as the case more and more. It is a very interesting revival back to the origins of our faith. It is a very difficult and narrow path- because (just like the book tells us) it with be met with resistance from most. Even those whom we hold very dear and held up as more spiritual or learned Christians - our mentors, family and friends, have not been open to investigating this honestly for themselves.

Galatians is a fine example- this has been improperly preached to prove a false primes of religion.that the law has been done away with. It continues to be taught and spread because people's lack of proper Biblical foundation to question it...so it is just absorbed and excepted. By the time they get strong enough in the word to question things - they too have been so conditioned to their churches specific doctrine and culture and heart strings are tied - that they gloss over the things that may not seem to "add up".  However, for those who do question it...they are often treated as "trouble makers" or defying authority or are swayed back to doctrine by an intervention of elders. Think about it - the church evangelizes (as it should!) - but those who are coming in are sponges - ready and eager to learn - by then, people are conditioned to see the Scriptures through the falsely colored lenses of incorrect doctrine - they get defensive and can not see through the thick web of religion that they have been trapped in unknowingly. This is true for GOOD, devoted, zealous people who in their minds or hearts may be sold out for Christ. That was me!!!  However, my honest desire for truth and willingness to be humbled continually and forsake all for the truth, was coupled with Yah's unending mercy and grace and desire that none shall parish who earnestly seek Him. He dropped those scales from my eyes. Since then- this walk has been an amazing faith building lifestyle of devotion and worship and service. My intimacy has and continues to increase.  All this is true, even though I thought I was plenty intimate with Him before. How can one explain it???

As for "prepping"- I assume you are referring to our choice in learning to live more sustainable and choosing an agrarian lifestyle? (We also embrace a lifestyle of ministry which supersedes our agrarian endeavors- but that is not in question here.)  This is a lifestyle choice that we believe is wise and packed with many life and character lessons for our children (as well as us!).  Learning to live off the land put us in sync with Yah's creation, it teaches us to rely on Him in new ways. It helps us to be healthy and strong.  There are many many lessons and principals that come from being engaged in stewarding animals and growing food that are contained the Bible.  Many of these things are better fully realized when applied. These are things we are still very much learning.  (Our lifestyle looks very different than many "preppers" who buy lots of canned food storage, build bunkers and stock pile guns and ammo. We do none of these things.) 

Most folks today are separated from this process of basic living off the land. We have by no means mastered it yet- but are certainly learning a lot! We are richly blessed to experience that. Likewise- we do not spend our time in many typical modern pursuits - and prefer " the simple life" which is not easy... Just less smoke screens and distractions from our Creator.

Being " independent or self sufficient" is not our main goal. Rather, being Yah-dependent, sustainable and good stewards of what Yah has given us charge of- our health, family and land. And of course being a good neighbors in our community and stepping outside of "the rat race" in as many ways as we can, helps us with this. At the same time- we feel a responsibility and joy in being a light to the world. We are not closed off, or withdrawn. 

We are Israel (according to the Bible) The chosen people...by faith we have been grafted in. This is how the Bible defines us. I believe it is how Yah defines us. We have been adopted into Yah's family- we take on the culture of our Father's house. It might look "Jewish " to those on the outside looking in... But being misjudged by others in that way, is of no concern to me. It is my desire and mission that for those who know us- see Yah's redemption (Yeshua/Jesus ) in us and our life as is demonstrated by Him with love, devotion, kindness, justice, obedience, commitment, faithfulness, graciousness, honesty and laying my life down for Yah's purpose and my fellow man, as He has called me to do.

I know you can't get all that from a blog- but hopefully those who KNOW me- even in my imperfections will see that- in me.

I noticed in your note you have made some snap judgement to "figure us out".  I do not seem to fit your understanding of religion and identity. You do not see me as a "Christian" because your church has defined that as something different for what you may be seeing on my blog. However, the title and concept of "Christian " is entirely man made. After studying Church history - back to the New Testament - that became very clear to us. Most people if they even study church history, they (conveniently) only go as far as their church founders or the Catholic reformation. (Not realizing Protestant means protesting Catholic. Not realizing they are carrying so much of the Catholic religion with them too) However, it needs to be tracked all the way back to Yeshua/ Jesus -   then dare I say - Abraham! When and how did the Sabbath change? or did it?  When did Christmas start and why? What do these religious words that we use in church-speak actually mean and do they come from Scripture? What are the Hebrew origins?  Are they the same? And so on... When someone has the courage to HONESTLY do that... They are put in a very very hard place of "reality check" and repentance. This is what we did. It caused us to test and evaluate everything we thought we knew and measure it against the actual Word if God!! It caused us to take full responsibility for our faith. What does The Bible call us? It is not Christian. It is Hebrew or Israel... Even in the New Testament... 

When we read revelation - who are called "the overcomers"? Overcomers are defined Revelation as "those who stand fast to the testimony of Yeshua and are faithful to keep the commandments".  What commandments? The ones that are referenced consistently through out the whole book. Our churches take things out of context and feeds us revised doctrine that fits their denomination and we get it in ingrained in our own theology and it is hard to see Yah and His plan and His Redeemer for what/who it is. Our perspective is very seriously skewed. We can only truly see that, when the scales are removed and we study the Word in context, with The Helper, with  respect to the culture and language and 'whole plan' from beginning to end. We have thousands and thousands of denominations because man wants to interpret The Word the way it best suits him to do so. Where is the love in that? Where is the submission and "lordship"? I am suggesting we stand outside of our religion and take a hard look - it is the truth of the matter.

So my greatest encouragement for you and your husband/ family (if that applies). Is to submit all you think you know before the Father, and ask Him: If there be any scales that need to be removed - that he would remove them and show you pure truth. Then approach The Word humbly in fear and trembling.  Study it in order from Gen 1 to Rev and let him re-write The Word on your heart. So eventually, when you get to the end of the books like Galatians and the writings of Paul and Revelation, these will be seen in a different light. Always consider context and try to learn about the Hebrew language and  place yourself in the culture. (When any language is translated- the fullness of the meaning and the cultural understandings are often lost and transposed into something different to fit the mind of the other language or culture.  We have found that this happened in the English translation in some places.  Some religions would freak out at that statement... But it is the truth... ) Pray for the strength to handle The Truth. Once the original languages are explored this can be seen rather plainly. Let's face the truth with faith and humbleness and move forward in Him- shall we? Some will- some won't. A few will "loose faith" all together (which likely means they never really had it to begin with, but rather a facade of it.) We will be judged, tested and tried. Scripture is very clear about this in the Old and New Testament. 

Our Christianity has watered down the truth and focused in on many good things mixed with many added doctrines of man which had caused us to go astray. It ignores many things all together when it does not fit their doctrine.  The Bible forewarns us all about that too- at great length. Christianity and Judaism alike - likes to separate "Jews and Christians" into two categories and parse what applies to each. This in not Scriptural. Yes... Some things progressed and changed... Some things remained. But the people- His true children are always those whom are faithful believers who are willing to lay their life down to follow Him - from Abraham to us today. All were imperfect (except Yeshua/Jesus of course) yet many still considered righteous. That is the family we are grafted into - Yah's family. The Bible calls us Hebrew or Israel. This is God's design- not ours. I'm going with His plan- not man's.

If you do take this suggestion and you do honestly pray for truth and search this out with The Spirit, you will come against testing, resistance and conflict ... Just like the Bible says we do when follow the truth. Your faith will be challenged and rebuilt.  You will start seeing yourself within the pages of this ancient book!!  It will take time and devotion (faithfulness). Most Christians don't want to be "bothered" and are just fine with their religion- thinking they have it all wrapped up. I will never come to the place where I think I have the Creator of the Universe and His plan all figured out. It is a constant seeking and desire to know Him more and be transformed in His likeness.  Yet... In my seeking there is great rest... Just like the Bible says.

May Yah Bless You and Keep You and make a great thirst for truth and righteousness be yours.  May He make His face shine upon you and bring you peace (shalom).

Shalom in Him,

Monday, September 1, 2014

Craig's Wellness

I am very excited to introduce a friend of ours to you, Craig Ryan.  He moved to rural TN from NC a few years ago (and lived previously on the East Coast), and we were introduced by a friend in common.  We love him and his family dearly. We have shared many laughs, sung songs together, had Bible discussions, toured garden & property and have conversations about everything under the sun - including health.  I like to send questions his way when I have them about health and food.

Craig is a personal trainer, consultant and health coach with more than 10 years experience in wellness.  He tells a little about his personal health journey here.

When they moved to start this homestead in TN, Craig converted a wood shop into a gym with a vision to start training single clients and small groups there.  One of the (many) things that makes Craig so special, is that he sees health through a Biblical holistic lens.  Everything is run through the filter of The Word.  He is also a family man.  So he loves to train and help FAMILIES become and stay healthy.  It is not at all a typical "singles gym setting" which focuses on the carnal aspect of health and physical beauty. His motivation and inspiration runs much deeper than that.

As a devoted husband and father to 7 beautiful children (at the time of this writing) - He is well aware and sensitive to (and experienced with) women's health and what is related to parenting and maintaining heath to sustain it.  His wife Amy is also an inspiration, an encouragement and fine example of this! They both want to be IN THE GAME with their children, not on the sidelines watching due to "getting old" or not being healthy.  They home school all  their children and Craig is also very active and involved in raising and educating his children.  They are genuine and fully committed to faith, family and longevity!  What a blessing they are!


While Craig has experience in sports medicine and in Work Site Wellness Training - his heart is truly for vibrant healthy families to carry out Kingdom work!  We're talking about healthy mommas, pappas and children who can live chemical free and strong lives - to do Yah's will without health related obstacles!

Since they have chosen this rural homestead  - he needed to find a way to help people outside of his low populous area while at the same time, generating an income to sustain his family and homestead.  He wanted to continue what he is passionate and gifted in doing.  So how does one do that when he insists on a personalized approach to address the specific needs of his clients?  Answer:  By using the internet!  Craig has launched his new website, where he shares very informative tid-bits in his "5 Minutes to Better Health" audio updates (which I LOVE!), Webinars and Seminars and the thing I am most excited about for folks is the personalized Workout Design and Remote Coaching.  He wants to help encourage and coach people to put this information into ACTION! He wants to help them incorporate it into a lifestyle, not just a diet or passing fad. With the website now up and running, his council and coaching is not limited to those few folks in his local rural county.  He does offer some things for free and he is willing to share his knowledge on a donation basis as well.  His paid services are offered at very family friendly rates too!  So if you like the idea of having a coach to work with maintaining your family’s health, and you like the idea of supporting a God-fearing man and his family in the process, please check out his site:  www.CraigsWellness.com.

If you like what you see, become a subscriber for free or on a donation basis if you are able to support him while he supports you!  Meanwhile, start taking those steps toward wellness and longevity for your family's sake!  Likewise, please share his site with others, this is a new venture and we want to get the word out to people!  

There is one other way you could support and bless this family. If you purchase things at Amazon.com you can go to this link (HERE) to enter Amazon and the Ryan family will get a small affiliate's percentage paid by Amazon to them for the referral.  It is no extra cost to you, to do it that way.  If you save or bookmark the link  in a way that is handy to use - just enter Amazon through that "door" if you will.  This small gesture made by many could slowly add up for this family and they will be able to continue to offer free and low cost health counseling, yet still cover the financial needs of the family.

There is a little saying that I often remind myself of...when I get discouraged and feel like I want to "slack off" in any area of our commitment and conviction.  It is this:

If you value something - you will do what it takes to make it happen.
If you don't, you will make excuses.

It really is that simple, isn't it? :-)

May Shalom and Health Be Yours!!