Category Archives: The God of My Understanding

“I AM A Worm…” Psalm 22

Many, many years ago, when I was just eighteen years old, I started to read and study the bible;  It was at the very beginning of my walk with a  God I barely knew or even believed in. It was about that time,  I Sally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Inspirational Music, Gospel, Christian, Concerts, Public Speaker, Bookings, Christian, OA, Guitarmet  a young man, only one year older than me. He loved the bible too and at his young age of 19, he knew so much. He agreed to study with me and it wasn’t long before we reached Psalm 22, a ‘song’ written by King David, a musician and psalmist. The young man aspired to teach seminars on the subject of Creationism. Just as my hearts desire was to serve God through music, he, being a scientist, had a strong desire to serve God and present the study of Creationism, which strives to make a case, based on scientific evidence, that God is indeed the creator of heaven and earth and debunk the theory of evolution. One of my first bible studies with the young man was about a small worm. The memory is vivid and it’s such a precious biblical lesson that, I must share it with you.

Psalm 22:6 presents us with simple words with a hidden meaning: “I Am a Worm and no longer a Man.” To begin with, there is a worm, the Crimson or Scarlet worm. It’s story, it’s life, speaks volumes. Let me tell you about the scarlet worm. This worm climbs onto a tree all by itself.  By its own choiceit attaches and even ‘secures’ itself to the tree, knowing it will not come down off that tree alive. It goes to the tree to birth a family and to do that it must die in the process. Once on the tree the crimson worm attaches itself to the tree because the body of the worm will be the shelter for the young. during the birthing process, the worm secretes a gel or crimson colored fluid which covers the eggs that she lays (this leaves a stain on the tree so when you see such a stain, you will know, aSally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Inspirational Music, Gospel, Christian, Concerts, Public Speaker, Bookings, Christian, OA, Guitar crimson worm was the cause.) At first glance, the reader of the Psalm might not think much about this sentence, “I AM A Worm”. In the story of Moses and the burning bush, when God calls Moses to go back to Egypt and speak to the pharaoh and tell him to “let my people Go”, Moses asks the voice coming from the fire, “Who shall I say sent me?” And God said, “Tell them, I AM”. And so, I Am is another name for God. I love this name because God is not “I was” or “The God, I will Be”, He is an ever-present God and TODAY we are called to seek HIM. (Exodus 3:14). Psalm 22:6 is the first verse in this psalm where King David (1000 years before Christ) describes the crucifixion of the Messiah. And the God, I Am goes on to liken Himself to A Worm, the scarlet worm. A few more things about “coccus ilicis”, yet another name for the scarSally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Inspirational Music, Gospel, Christian, Concerts, Public Speaker, Bookings, Christian, OA, Guitarlet or crimson worm that you should know. The worm stays for three days, covering it’s eggs with its blood-like fluid. Then, the fluid is scraped from the tree and is used as a dye.This dye was used in the old testament times for the high priests garments and for the sanctuary linens. Additionally, the dead worm, when scraped off the tree (after the three days and in fact on the fourth day) it becomes the ingredient of medicines as it has healing powers. (“By His stripes we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5). 

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A Divine Appointment!

So I was getting ready for the Concert; I was blessed to have a mandolin, harmonica and another guitar player join me early to prepare for the sing along portion of the program. Two women walked in with huge flower arrangements for either side of my stool. The lights were set low and slides were up on the huge screen and monitors in place so that I could hear and see what the audience sees. As I sat in the sound booth and made some last-minute changes to the slides, some one came up to me and said, “Can you do two things at once?”. I said, I used to be able to do twelve things at once. I’m down to two! Go ahead.” He said, “Before you go home tomorrow, would you be willing to sing in a Lutheran Church? Just two songs?” I said, “I would love to do that. Let me speak to my driver (Thank You, Lord, that I have one, a driver that is, for this weekend. My friend Bob’s parents live five miles from the church that I sang at this weekend. I stayed at the local hotel, a mile away.)
The concert was about to begin and the connection for the slides was on and off and on and off. So I decided to begin and sing a little and give them a few minutes to get it working. Twenty minutes later, the “MC” made the introduction and added, “And Sally will be singing in the Lutheran Church tomorrow!” I thought, “Ok, I guess that’s that! I’m singing at another church tomorrow. Thank You, Lord!” I felt a bit distressed as I didn’t run it past my friend/ my driver who had said, he wanted to leave at 9, no later than 10 so that we could avoid ‘Mother’s Day’ traffic. Oh well!

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What I Love About Exodus!

The Story of Moses Sally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Singer and Song Writer, Blog, Music, Guitar Twelve Step Recovery, Speaker, Concert Artist, sally.atari@yahoo.com, sallyatari.com

While Genesis saw the children of Israel ‘tucked’ safely away in the land of Egypt with God through Joseph watching over their needs in a time of famine, Exodus opens with the descendants of Joseph and his brothers now enslaved and in bondage to the Egyptians. God knew this would happen and His provision was met in the life of Moses. The story of Moses is rich and his life and its many twists and turns unfolds throughout the book of Exodus.

As a baby, when Pharoah (the king of Egypt) saw that, “the people of the children of Israel [were] more and mightier than . . . ” the Egyptians, he commanded the midwives to kill the male infants as they were born. “But the midwives feared God. . . ” (Ex. 1:17) Eventually, Moses had to be hid in an ark of bulrushes (a basket in the form of a cradle). His sister, Miriam, watched over him from a distance and God did a miracle; Little sister, Miriam, when she saw the daughter of the Pharoah rescue the baby from the floating ‘ark’, she ran and asked if she should get the baby a wet-nurse. So Moses mother was able to nurse her baby and even watch him grow. As a mother, I imagine this was such a relief! (Side bar: Noah’s Ark saved eight people at the time of the flood, Moses was saved in an Ark made of the bulrushes; the Ark of the Covenant held the ten commandments, Aaron’s rod and Manna from the desert. (Ex. 25:10)

Moses lived forty years as a prince among the Egyptians, then for forty years, he was a shepherd in the desert learning how to lead a very large group of people (603,550 Men, over the age of twenty (Ex. 38:26)). Then he spent forty years wandering and leading his brethren, all the time circling the promised land (Acts 7: 23, 30, 36). There are so many great texts and lessons found in Exodus. Here are a few highlights of this book:

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What I Love About Genesis!

Beginning is half-finished!

Got a partner to do this with? Check! Got a bible? Check! Got a plan? Check! (The internet has so many options!) And of course, beginning is half-finished! When ever I start what feels like a monumental project,  (and this one do Sally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Singer and Song Writer, Blog, Music, Guitar Twelve Step Recovery, Speaker, Concert Artist, sally.atari@yahoo.com, sallyatari.comes feel daunting as I have purposed in my heart and made it my ‘New Years Resolution’ so many times and not followed through! In fact, I have come to embrace the idea that I have a broken ‘follow through button’.) I hold onto this thought.  This is why, I prayed, please send me a study buddy! I asked at three churches that I frequent, “Does anybody have an interest in doing this with me?” Not one person expressed an interest. Then, one day, I mentioned my hearts desire to a twelve step recovery friend. She said, “I’ve never read the bible before.” I tenderly asked, “Do you think you might be interested in reading it with me? We could read on our own and then every morning I will act as a guide as I’ve read it many times?” She said, “Yes!” And we got started that day; it was the end of January so we had some catching up to do as It’s my hearts desire to finish on or the day after Christmas. She agreed. We started that same day. How great is God? She’s someone I have never met but love dearly by virtue of many phone conversations. She lives far away. But we have all we need to make this happen and the journey of a life time has begun.

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Read to be Spiritually Fed!

Get a Bible Buddy and start reading! Sally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Singer and Song Writer, Blog, Music, Guitar Twelve Step Recovery, Speaker, Concert Artist, sally.atari@yahoo.com, sallyatari.com

Imagine treating the Bible like a steady diet?

Salad: A Psalm or two a day
Soup dejour: Proverbs according to date (One chapter a day).
Main course: 3 weighed and measured chapters a day in the Old Testament and 1 chapter in the New Testament.

“I gave you milk to drink and not meat…” 1 Corinthians 3:1-3

Paul speaks to the church of Corinth of being carnal and immature in his first letter. He was complaining to them that he had to feed them milk because they were still fighting and debating with each other and were not mature enough for the meat of the word. Again in Hebrews, he addresses this church in a similar dialogue.

For Truly, by this time you ought to be teachers, but instead you need to have someone teach you again what are the beginning principles of the oracles of God and have become those in need of milk, not of solid food.”
 Hebrews 5:12

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