Salt: A necessary nutrient

Hey there BCU Family!

You have the option of listening to our podcast (click the BCU avatar below to listen), reading the notes or BOTH. In any case, we pray the podcast blesses you. If so, please thumbs up or leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy your study! 

A couple of weeks ago, I started on a “salt series” that talked about salt production and how vital it is to our natural body and in the body of Christ on a spiritual level. Last post, we learned that salt was just not a food enhancer or monetary trade item, it was also used as a covenant symbol.

This final post will review/ round off that series by exploring why we need (more) salt in our lives.  Let’s dig in by reviewing our anchor Scripture, (which we will refer to later).

“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men” (Matthew 5:13 NKJV).

Salt gets a bad rap because of its link to high blood pressure, fluid retention, etc. While anything in excess can be harmful, iodized salt is not the best for the body. Common “table” salt is void of vital nutrients except iodine, which is added back after processing.

Sea salt contains nutrients that are needful for the body like sulphate, magnesium, calcium, potassium, bicarbonate, bromide, borate, strontium, and fluoride. In addition, sodium regulates the passage of nutrients into the cells. Without it, nutrients cannot enter your cells and you will have malnutrition and exhaustion, no matter how good your diet. Some other salt functions are:

Muscle cramps prevention
Regulator of:
–blood pressure
–blood sugar
–sleep
Eliminates dry coughs (just a bit on your tongue)
Soothes a sore throat (warm water & salt gargle)
Draws out infections

And that’s just the a small fraction of what salt does! Just as its needed in your body, it’s needed in the “Body Of Christ” as well.

Consistent salt regulates the “Body” by keeping “infections” out such as: idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and things like this. Willful engagement of these behaviors will prohibit us from entering into the kingdom of God, according to Galatians 5:20-21. Having salt on the regular will keeps us functioning and keep the “good” in. Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! (Galatians 5:22, 23 NLT).

Additionally, salt was also used as a food preserver. History teaches us that salt was used to keep fresh fish from spoiling (there were no freezers in biblical times). In relation to the above paragraph, spiritual salt “preserves” us from practicing sin.

We also need salt for our conversations with family, friends, co-workers and the not-so-nice store clerk. “Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer every one: (Colossians 4:6 NKJV). Another example comes from Proverbs 15:1–“a soft answer turns away wrath, but grievious words stir up anger.” Salt helps temper your responses.

Few things are as bad as a flavorless, or what I call a peppered Christian—acting bitter and nasty due to hurt, cares of the world, practicing sin or bad habits. In fact, let’s go back to the verse that started the series–Matthew 5:13, “You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men.”

In the Bible days, when harvesting the salt, if any of it was contaminated with dirt or marsh, it was put on the dirt roads to keep the dust down, hence the reference to being trampled underfoot by men. A contaminated Christian NOT the testimony we want. We have to stay seasoned in order to draw the world AND love folks. Jesus said,“have salt in yourselves and peace with one another” (Mark 9:50). If there is no salt in you, you will not have peace with others. Makes a lot of sense, doesn’t it?

Bottom line: Salt is a necessary nutrient needed in our natural and spiritual lives. Adequate salt intake comes from prayer, fasting, regular bible study and attending church. Also, just like when we season our food, we want to use the correct amount of salt in our speech and actions. Too little salt is not effective—too much salt and is not palatable. Let us purpose in our hearts to ask God to help us to always use/the right amount of salt in ALL our interactions. Amen? Amen!


So what are your thoughts on our topic-du-jour? Did you know that salt is a necessary nutrient both naturally and spiritually? Do you get enough salt?  Please head to the comments section below and let’s chat some more!

In the meantime, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter , and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe too the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and Apple podcasts!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

Making “salted promises.”

Hey there BCU Family!

You have the option of listening to our podcast (click the BCU avatar below to listen), reading the notes or BOTH. In any case, we pray the podcast blesses you. If so, please thumbs up or leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy your study! 

Last post, I started on a “salt series” that talked about salt production and how vital it is to our natural body and in the body of Christ on a spiritual level. This time around, lets see what the Word is on salt. Here is our anchor scripture.

“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men (Matthew 5:13). 

Let’s see why we need to keep salt in us.

One of the earliest mentions of salt is in Leviticus 2. That chapter outlines detailed instructions on how sacrifices had to be prepared to be given to the priests and then offered to God. In verses 4-6, you’ll see God was very specific about the flour, oil—and even if the grain sacrifice was made pan versus a frying pan. (Side note: note how you just couldn’t bring God a sacrifice any old way. That’s important for us to think about when we bring Him our sacrifice of praise, worship, time, money..anything we have for Him, we should give Him our best). Looking at the verses 11-12, God specifies the “seasonings” on the offering–that there should be no leaven or honey, but:

Every offering you shall season with salt. You shall not allow the salt of the covenant of your God to be lacking from your grain offering. With all your offerings you shall offer salt” (Leviticus 2:13).

Okay, Blen, so what does that mean? I am glad you asked! Salt was just not a food enhancer or monetary trade items like we learned last time, it was also used as a covenant symbol.

History mentions that people used salt as a sign of binding loyalty and a symbol of alliance. In fact, in Europe and parts of the Middle East, salt and bread are offered to guests as a sign of friendship (hence the phrase “we have salt between us”). Additionally, treaties and truces were formalized using salt. Each person would take a lick of salt (similar to shaking hands) to “seal the deal”.

Salt was also used to heal a rift between parties as well. If there was a disagreement between folks, you would invite the person into your home to share a dish of salt. Each of you would lick your finger, dip it in the salt and then eat the salt together. Peculiar as this may sound, when a promise was seasoned with salt, it was so serious, that people would rather die than break that promise! Let’s examine another Scripture on the Covenant of salt.

2 Chronicles 13 tells of a war between Israel (King Jeroboam) and Judah (King Abijah). Jeroboam had the bigger army and was pretty sure he could take Abijah down. King Abijah reminded Jeriboam of God’s promise.

“Should you not know that the Lord God of Israel gave the dominion over Israel to David forever, to him and his sons, by a covenant of salt? Now look, God Himself is with us as our head, and His priests with sounding trumpets to sound the alarm against you. O children of Israel, do not fight against the Lord God of your fathers, for you shall not prosper!” Then the men of Judah gave a shout; and as the men of Judah shouted, it happened that God struck Jeroboam and all Israel before Abijah and Judah”
(2 Chronicles 13:5,12,15 NKJV). Yessss–God ALWAYS keeps His word and Judah triumphed!!!!!!

Are you connecting the dots, Family? Isn’t it wonderful to see how God shows us how He keeps promises with something as simple, yet as powerful as salt? How about the promises we make? 🙊Are they “salt-worthy”? Solomon warns us think before we vow:

Do not be rash with your mouth, and let not your heart utter anything hastily before God. For God is in heaven, and you on earth; Therefore let your words be few
(Ecclesiastes 5:2 NKJV).

I cannot speak for you all, but if someone promises they will do something and they don’t follow through, I am so disappointed! Because the Lord has made me more mindful about keeping my word, He reminds me to say “with God’s help I will”…or, “if nothing changes, I plan to”, or “Lord will, I’ll…” Keeping that last verse in mind, it really helps us to rely on our perfect God to help us keep our word. Also, if we something does happen, it’s a good idea to circle back to the person quickly and fulfill your promise as soon as possible.

Bottom line: If you can’t season your promise with salt, it really best not to promise at all. I heard a cartoon character say, a broken promise cannot be easily put back together. That’s heavy, right? So keeping that in mind, we should pray before we promise. Amen? Amen.


So what are your thoughts on our topic-du-jour? Did you know about the salt covenant? Do you think about your promises carefully before making them? Please head to the comments section below and let’s chat some more!

In the meantime, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter , and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and Apple podcasts!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

 

4 types of love every Christian should know.

Hey there BCU Family!

Typically, you have the option of listening to our podcast, reading the notes or both. For this post, because of the informal format, please tune into the podcast recording and refer to the written post for the highlights. We pray the post blesses and encourages you. If so, please thumbs up AND leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy the post!

Podcast highlights:

    • We use the term “love” very generally, but the definitions are very specific.
    • There are more types of love to define, but our focus is on the four below.
    • Regardless of the love type or (lack of) love reciprocity, God expects us to exhibit love in all interactions.
    • Loving the hard-to-love can be a challenge, but God is able if we are willing.

BCU Love types 4

When we lay this out, BCU Fam, we see what our responsibility is in terms of loving people the way God requires—especially the unconditional, forgiving agape love that is threaded through all these love types, AND a requirement in this walk with Christ. I have to say the flesh would have us to stifle our love and save it for those who deserve it or show us love, but Matthew 5:43-48 reminds us that there is no reward in that behavior, rather we are to love our enemies. And that show-love struggle can be REAL, but not impossible—with the help and total surrender to the word and will of God. Amen? Amen!

So what are your thoughts on our topic-du-jour? How can we ensure that we show love in all of our interactions? Please head to the comments section below and let’s chat some more!

In the meantime, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter , and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and Apple podcasts!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

Let’s make a deal…

Hey there BCU Family!

As usual, you have the option of listening to our podcast (click the BCU avatar below to listen), reading the notes or BOTH. In any case, we pray the podcast blesses you. If so, please thumbs up or leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy your study!

So while it’s back on now, as I child, I remember watching the original “Let’s Make A Deal”, with Monte Hall as host. For those unfamiliar with the show, Wikipedia describes it this way:

  • The format of Let’s Make a Deal involves selected members of the studio audience, referred to as “traders,” making deals with the host.
  • In most cases, a trader will be offered something of value and given a choice of whether to keep it or exchange it for a different item.
  • The program’s defining game mechanism is that the other item is hidden from the trader until that choice is made.
  • The trader thus does not know if he or she is getting something of greater value or a prize that is referred to as a “zonk,” an item purposely chosen to be of little or no value to the trader.

In watching the show, I’ve observed people trade good money or a solid prize in intrigue, mystery, curiosity and greed for the hidden items behind doors number 1, 2 or 3.

While the show was entertaining and fun, we can apply the Let’s Make a Deal premise to our own lives. When we think about it, those of us who know Christ in the pardoning of our sins and have the gift of the Holy Ghost (see Acts 2:38), received the best “deal”–eternal life in Heaven in exchange for the one-way reservation we had to hell. While God blessed us with salvation, it’s our responsibility to maintain that salvation–and that means making the right decisions according to what the Word of God says, versus exchanging His will and Word for what may seem better–until you get it.

How many of us have traded what God said for “the hidden item” or zonk you’d find out about after your exchange?

  • Our purity for a little love aka lust (which can end in unwanted pregnancy, unexpected responsibilities,  disease and heartbreak).
  • Our honesty for a larger income tax refund (which will rapidly be blown through or the item not be as wonderful as when you purchased it).
  • Our time with God for a movie or TV show (leaving your flesh temporarily satisfied and your spirit restless and empty). All these consequences are the “zonk” that wasn’t calculated into your exchange.

The adversary works through our flesh, if we let him. And he who would like nothing more than for us to “make a deal” with him to trade what we KNOW to be true–what we have in hand– (what God said or asks for),  for something that might seem better, but after the reveal,  turns out to be of of little or no value.  Let’s take King Saul for example.

In 1 Samuel 15, Saul, the anointed king of Israel, was told by God to destroy Amalek and spare NOTHING. Rather, Saul spared Agog, the king of the Amalakites and choice sheep, calves, oxen and lambs (vs 9). The Lord then spoke to Samuel, the prophet telling him that he regretted making Saul king, because he turned his back on God–and would not keep His commandments. This upset Samuel so much he cried the whole night.

The next day, Saul told Samuel he had done what the Lord said, to whit, Samuel asked about the animals he heard bleating. Let’s take a look at the exchange:

15 And Saul said, They have brought them from the Amalekites: for the people spared the best of the sheep and of the oxen, to sacrifice unto the LORD thy God; and the rest we have utterly destroyed.

16 Then Samuel said unto Saul, Stay, and I will tell thee what the LORD hath said to me this night. And he said unto him, Say on.

17 And Samuel said, When thou wast little in thine own sight, wast thou not made the head of the tribes of Israel, and the LORD anointed thee king over Israel?

18 And the LORD sent thee on a journey, and said, Go and utterly destroy the sinners the Amalekites, and fight against them until they be consumed.

19 Wherefore then didst thou not obey the voice of the LORD, but didst fly upon the spoil, and didst evil in the sight of the LORD?

20 And Saul said unto Samuel, Yea, I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and have gone the way which the LORD sent me, and have brought Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites.

21 But the people took of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the chief of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice unto the LORD thy God in Gilgal.

22 And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.

23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.

24 And Saul said unto Samuel, I have sinned: for I have transgressed the commandment of the LORD, and thy words: because I feared the people, and obeyed their voice.

25 Now therefore, I pray thee, pardon my sin, and turn again with me, that I may worship the LORD.

26 And Samuel said unto Saul, I will not return with thee: for thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, and the LORD hath rejected thee from being king over Israel.

Saul made a deal.

He exchanged what He KNEW to do, what was sure, traded the divine will of God for people approval and choice animals—that God didn’t even ask for. In fact, He said t DESTROY everything.

Saul’s trade cost him his place on the throne.

And no matter how sorry Saul was—he could not and did not get his throne back.

Once God says “no”, His decision is final.

This is SO sobering, BCU Family. And yes, while we live in the dispensation of grace, we STILL are accountable to God to maintain holy living which means not practicing sin. I know firsthand how tempting going outside of God’s will is to get what you want–especially if you’ve been waiting a long time. While trading God’s commands for what looks/sounds good or may offer instant gratification, the trade always ends up with us losing. Losing our blessings, miracles, peace of mind, favor with God and yes, even our place in Heaven. Is anything on Earth worth that? Saul would tell us no.

With the help of the Lord, let’s hold onto God’s Word and obey it as He asks. In doing so, we can rest assured that His gifts will never compromise His Word and they will ALWAYS be perfect! Amen? Amen!

What are you thoughts about what we chatted about? Are you all done with deal-making with the help of the Lord? Please head down to the comments section to share your thoughts so we can continue our conversation!

In the meantime, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter,  and Instagram,  You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and Apple podcasts!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

It’s time to do better…

Hey family!

I was scrolling through my Instagram feed today and saw this quote from Christian comedian Broderick E. Rice: “Early birds get more than just the worm; they get everything the latecomers aren’t willing to sacrifice for.” He lowered the “BOOM”, y’all! 😳

As I pondered that, back in my 20’s, I might have chuckled and kept moving. Fast forward a couple of decades, and I totally agree with what he said. Occasional tardiness, or something that can’t be helped (church service starts at 7pm and you get off work at the same time, you got a flat tire, you were ministering at church, etc..) is one thing, it is the habitual lateness that is the quagmire for most of us. Not only is non-punctuality extremely discourteous, it is stressful (for the offender and the offended) and most of all, it shows lack of stewardship with the precious commodity that God entrusts us with. Many times, we just need to manage our time better.

In doing some quick research, I ran across a post about tardiness written by Brett and Kate McKay–a snippet of the high points are below. While the post was intended to help our male population be on time, I believe this information is just as important for the ladies–I know ALL the points resonated with me. After reading this, let’s ask The Lord to help us to manage the time He so graciously gives us!

God bless you and thanks for reading! I may do a follow-up to this post–I’m excited about implementing habitual timeliness! 😊

BCU

1) Being punctual shows your humility. That bumper sticker maxim: “Always late, but worth the wait” shows that tardiness and an overestimation of one’s worth sometimes go hand in hand. People will be glad to see you when you arrive, but they would have been gladder still had you come on time.

2) Being punctual shows your respect for others. Being late is a selfish act, for it puts your needs above another’s. You want an extra minute to do what you’d like, but in gaining that minute for yourself, you take a minute from another, which is why….

3) Being late is a form of stealing. That’s a tough truth, but it’s a truth nonetheless. When you make others wait for you, you rob minutes from them that they’ll never get back. Time they could have turned into money, or simply used for the things important to them. In coming to meet you at the agreed upon hour, they may have made sacrifices – woken up early, cut short their workout, told their kid they couldn’t read a story together – and your lateness negates those sacrifices. If you wouldn’t think of taking ten dollars from another man’s wallet, you shouldn’t think of stealing ten minutes from him either. Being punctual shows you value time yourself, and thus wouldn’t think of depriving others of this precious, but limited resource.

4) Being late strains your relationships. When you’re late in meeting other people, it makes them feel under-valued, that whatever you couldn’t pull yourself away from was more important or that they didn’t mean enough to you to warrant allotting sufficient time to arrive on schedule. The guest who flies in to see you feels like a dope standing at the airport alone, your date feels awkward sitting at the restaurant by herself, and your child feels abandoned as she waits with her teacher for you to arrive, all the other children having already been picked up from school.

5)Being punctual strengthens and reveals your integrity. If you tell someone that you will meet them at a certain time, you have essentially made them a promise. And if you say you’ll be there at 8:00, and yet arrive at 8:15, you have essentially broken that promise. Being on time shows others that you are a man [woman] of your word.

6) Being late takes a toll on your life. Always running behind simply hurts you in all areas of your life. It results in lost opportunities: missing a plane, missing a meeting, missing an important part of a lecture, missing a wedding. It creates stress and can lead to car accidents and traffic tickets. It results in embarrassment and forces you to come up with excuses for why you’re late, putting a strain on your honesty. Basically, it makes your life more complicated; for men [women] seeking to simplify their lives, cultivating punctuality is an essential part of that path.

Content from: http://www.artofmanliness.com