Hanukkah 2018 in Prison: Part 5

Written by Jim Staley
Hanukkah 2018 in Prison: Part 5
Last night was day 5 of our Hanukkah celebration and we had a packed house. And what a blessed evening it was. Today, a man from my own hometown got radically saved and the Father is delivering him from his drug addictions as we speak. He gave his testimony in front of everyone in the room as he said that it was "time to make a change and get right with God." The light was very bright in the room last night and you could feel the Spirit in an almost tangible way.

As they passed the wooden Hanukkia around and the first 5 people lit one candle, I began a short review of the previous four days and then began to talk about King David and how the Light was passed to him and how much he truly blew it for most of his life. I encouraged everyone to never look down on yourselves for being in prison because David was no better of a man. He committed adultery and then tried to cover it up with murder. He was a true criminal and God had to chastise him heavily because of it. He had to go through a tremendous amount of pain over the next several decades. From the death of his firstborn from Bathsheba to his son Absalom taking over his throne which forced David into hiding and isolation, David understood pain. He was imprisoned, malnourished and was despised much like a prisoner today. I tried to encourage them that if David can still be called a "man after God's own heart" after all of his mistakes, how much more could we as well? After all, if our God is not a God of restoration, love, forgiveness and grace, then He is no God at all. But He is a God of forgiveness and He chastises those He loves. We all have hope; we just need to wait for His deliverance! 
Speaking of waiting, I read a few scriptures on waiting on the LORD and connected that to being the light. I explained that "being" a light is an action word and is something that we actively do while we are waiting on the hand of the LORD in whatever situation we find ourselves in. Here's one of the scriptures I shared: 
Psalms 37:6-7 
He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday [when you] rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him. (Parenthetical expressions mine) 
In English, the word "wait" has the connotation of being on pause, stopping for a moment, ceasing all activity, being patient. But that is not at all what the meaning is in Hebrew. In Hebrew, the word "wait" is qavah. It literally means to bind together. Strong's says it is the intentional straining of the mind in a certain direction with an expectant attitude. Did you catch that? Waiting is not just finding something to do or ceasing from activity until something that your waiting for happens. It is intently looking in the direction of the One in whom you are waiting on and expecting great things! But that is not all; it's much deeper. 
I mentioned that the first definition of qavah is to "bind together." There is a reason for that. The reason is because qavah is connected to the word tiqvah, which is the word for a cord or a rope. Tiqvah is the word in the Hebrew Bible that is most often translated as "hope." You got it. Hope. When you are waiting on the LORD, you are putting your hope in Him. In the Hebraic mindset, you are binding yourself like a rope to Him. You are over a cliff and you are looking intently up at the rope that you are holding onto and you are fully trusting and completely expectant that He will pull you up and to safety. This is what it means to "wait." It means to hold onto that rope with all your strength and believing with all your heart that He will do His part. 
This is exactly why the Psalmist says that if we will wait patiently on Him and rest in Him, "He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday." When we commit our ways to Him He delivers us out of every trap that the enemy sets for us and becomes the proverbial "light" at the end of the tunnel. 
We ended by showing through the Prophets that this "light," this "rope," is none other than the Word of God, the Angel of the LORD, who manifested Himself in the form of Yeshua HaMachiach/Jesus the Christ. All those that hold onto the tassels that flow from the corner of His robe, will receive power from on high. Yeshua is the Rope of life, so hold on tight and let Him do the rest! 
Stay tuned for part 6! 
Happy Hanukkah! 
Jim Staley