Good morning, Lord!
Thank you for getting me up bright and early, letting me be there this morning for my husband, helping you encourage him along. Thank you for helping me past the bad dream and walking with me, showing me that those old spiritual things from my past no longer have any power over me. Thank you for showing me how close YOU are, right beside me, right with me, like a Shepherd or a friend. Thank you, Jesus!
Isaiah 41:10 KJV
Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.
Isaiah 41:10 ISV
Don’t be afraid, because I’m with you; don’t be anxious, because I am your God. I keep on strengthening you; I’m truly helping you. I’m surely upholding you with my victorious right hand.
Isaiah 41:10 ERV
Don’t worry–I am with you. Don’t be afraid–I am your God. I will make you strong. I will help you. I will support you with my right hand that brings victory.
Sometimes I just like to hear it more than once, in a little different wording. For many years, I held strictly to the King James Version of the Bible, falling in with the crowd that insists that it is the only TRUE and ACCURATE version of God’s Holy Word. And it is the version I am most familiar with. However, that familiarity started to get in the way after close to two decades reading it. Eventually it became like a too-familiar album from your favorite band. Just background noise, can’t really focus in on it, don’t really HEAR it. One day I just started reading in a different Bible version — NIV, I think — and was amazed at how many times I found myself declaring, “I don’t remember reading THAT before…!” And just like that, the Word was fresh again! Now, with so many electronic Bible apps, we can easily read more than one version at a time, viewing the same verse side-by-side in 6 different versions at a time if we like. So while I still consider the KJV to be a bit more of an authority on what God is actually saying, this is more due to the convenience of the KJV+ version — where I can instantly see Strong’s Concordance entries for any word by hovering over it — than to the actual KJV wording. Thanks to technology (like eSword), I can easily verify any questionable translation in an instant, gaining a more accurate understanding than even the KJV allows.
Here’s an example of what I mean:
Titus 2:5 gives a description of a godly woman. Part of that, according to the King James Version, is to be “keepers at home”. But what does that MEAN??? Does that mean we stay home, that we “keep house”, even that we keep our MEN at home??!! Two other versions I have on hand render this same portion of the verse as “take care of their homes” and “manage their households”. Okay, that seems a bit more clear now… UNTIL you look at the KJV+ and hover over the phrase “keepers at home” (see pic below)! NOW we can see that this single Greek word being translated all these different ways is “oikouros“, which is essentially home + guard. Wow! That puts a whole new spin on things! This paints a picture (at least to me) of a woman whose HEART is at home, “looking well to the ways” of it, basically watching the entrance and exit of people and objects and maintaining a proper balance and level of health therein. She doesn’t NEED to ALWAYS be there to do this — but she never leaves it unwatched, unmonitored. She doesn’t necessarily have to do any manual labor, but she oversees and makes sure such things are taken care of. And she doesn’t need to “lord it over” her husband and children and boss them around — she is more interested in getting things DONE and protecting her peeps’ best interests than in being RIGHT or being unquestioned. A soldier at a gate treats differently the accidental practice arrows of a young boy versus the threatening dagger of a thief. Likewise, a wise woman treats differently the small annoyances of life versus those things that can cause her family long lasting harm. And like any good “keeper”, she is around enough, aware enough, personally concerned enough, to know the difference.
Lord, please make me a wise and faithful steward and “keeper” of my household. I am far from perfect and have so much more to learn. Continue to cleanse me of my selfishness and pride and allow your righteousness to take the place of my own false version. Keep me humble and teachable. Keep me looking to you. And thank you again for the glimpse this morning of how closely you walk beside me — every day, not just after a threatening dream. :O>