The Counting of the Omer Day 5: The Road to Transformation The Counting of the Omer – First Fruits to Shavuot
The Counting of the Omer covers a fifty-day period of time from the Feast of First Fruits until Shavuot (Pentecost). Beginning with the day of First Fruits, each subsequent day is counted for seven complete weeks, plus one day – fifty days. During the Counting of the Omer, we “count up” to the Feast of Shavuot (the 50th Day) with each day of counting, adding to the growing expectation of what Pentecost will bring. During the Counting of the Omer, each day 8 verses from Psalms 119 is read and meditated upon, causing us to review the condition of our hearts before God.
“And you shall count for yourselves from the day after the Sabbath…Count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath; then you shall offer a new grain offering to the Lord.”(Leviticus 23: 15-16 NKJV)
Day 5 Psalm 119:33-40
33 Teach me, Adonai, the way of your laws; keeping them will be its own reward for me.
34 Give me understanding; then I will keep your Torah; I will observe it with all my heart.
35 Guide me on the path of your mitzvoth (commandments), for I take pleasure in it.
36 Bend my heart toward your instructions and not toward selfish gain.
37 Turn my eyes away from worthless things; with your ways, give me life.
38 Fulfill your promise, which you made to your servant, which you made to those who fear you.
39 Avert the disgrace which I dread, for your rulings are good.
40 See how I long for your precepts; in your righteousness, give me life!
Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the Universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments and commanded us to count the omer: Tonight is the 5th night of the Omer.”
When we hear the word why at the beginning of a sentence we are prompted to find out the answer. We are born without the answers, we live for years with many ‘why’s,’ and never receive the answer. It is interesting that we do not understand the magnitude of contempt in questioning the Creator, that we should know what, when, where, how and of course the why of what our sovereign God does or is doing. In Jeremiah 29:11 he shares with us that He knows what plans He has in mind for us, plans for well-being, not for bad things; so that you can have hope and a future.
We walk as many of the forefathers of the promise walked, Abraham, Elijah, David and yes, us. Sovereignty is a difficult pill to swallow we seemingly understand it but, often dismiss it in our lives when we lean toward reasoning. Yes, we have choices, but the outcomes of the choices that have been set before us in YHWH our God’s commandments are also shared with us, therefore we know that if we do a particular thing we are walking in the realm of life or death (Deut. 30:19). The grey area is filled with the need to know the why’s of everything.
There is a great advantage to this urge to know which has given us many technological advances in medicines, operations, technologies and more. Yet, everything has its place, the advances cannot be mistaken for a pattern of gaining omniscience. See, there is a major boundary that can be violated which then effects the condition of the heart. In counting the Omer today, we see the scriptures in these verses there is a pattern here
119: 33 Teach me,
119:34 Give me understanding
119:35 Guide me
119:36 Bend my heart
119:37 Turn my eyes
119:38 Fulfill your promise
119:39 Avert the disgrace which I dread
119:40 See how I long for your precepts
The scripture embodies the steps and positions of how we transform through our uncertainties in the presence of God. We ask Him to teach and guide us as one who does not know but trusts Him. We then ask for the change which is the bending of our hearts. We come with stiff-necked tendencies and are set in our ways initially. The bend includes the resolve that we will NEVER know the mind of God. Once the bend is slightly forming in the mind and heart, it is our eyes that are surrendered to His authority so that we will see His commandments. Have you noticed how your posture does not necessarily dictate in which direction one is looking. These adjustments are awkward, uncomfortable, filled with newness and different to our previous status. When things are uncomfortable or unsettling we remember the promises YHWH our God has made and will keep because He is faithful. These are those difficult days if we keep these steps moving in the direction of YHWH our God we shun the fear of failure, and disgrace because He promised us; therefore we keep reaching and desiring for His precepts.
We are going to be taught, it is the role of the Holy Spirit (Ruach HaKodesh) , and it is God’s word which never returns void. The best part of loving, worshipping and obeying God is doing so when you do not know, but trusting Him enough to know that your best outcome is always His plan. Welcome your transformation.
Loving you enough to share the truth,