Wednesday, September 26, 2012

A Personal Note


During the past several weeks I have been experiencing vision problems.  My wife finally insisted I visit the eye doctor.   After an examination the Doctor said there was nothing wrong with my eyes.  I visited my family doctor.  He said I needed to get an MRI at the hospital.  That was followed up by a CT scan.  The results were shocking. I have a tumor on the part of my brain that controls vision.  I also have several other tumors in my brain.  I have a cancerous mass on my lung and another tumor in my back.  I also have several tumors in my lymph nodes.  I am scheduled to go to the Cancer Center on October 3rd for an evaluation.  At that time they will decide whether to get treatment – or not.  I have been through several stages this week.  My first was denial.  I just knew they were wrong.  I couldn’t have cancer.  Not Me.  Then there was anger.  Why God?  Why did you let this happen to me?  Then there was self pity.  I cried.  I cried some more and some more.  Finally there was acceptance.  I accepted the fact that I have cancer and I have turned it all over to God.  God has walked with me over my 70 years.  I didn’t realize He was there for the first 10 years, but He was by my side.  He is by my side now.  Please pray for my recovery and pray for my wife.  She is devastated.  We have no children.  We have outlived the other members of our family.  If God calls me home she will not be alone.  God will be by her side.  Thank you for your prayers.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

YOU CAN'T TAKE IT WITH YOU


My wife and I were shopping in the Mall and I was doing what I usually do on our shopping trips.  My wife looked at every dress on the racks and I stood silently by her side.  When she asks my opinion on a dress I look at her face.  I can tell whether she likes the dress or she is not sure.  If I see the “I like it” look I say I like it.  If I see the “not sure” look I say -  It is nice but it just doesn’t look like you.  That is 46 years experience.  When we are shopping I look at other people around me.  It is sort of a hobby.  I like to watch people.  I see a family who looks prosperous enough.  They have nice clothes.  They look happy.  The teen age child asks the father for some money.  I look at the father’s face and I can see the answer is no.  Oh, I know the father will give a lot of reasons but I can see the answer is no.  I can see it on his face.  He’s a tightwad.  The mother is dressed a little better than the father.  I’ve seen  that look before.  I can guess that the father probably had a little less money when he was in his younger years.  Then I hear the teenager say something about – You can’t take it with you.  He’s right.  You can’t  take it with you.  That reminds me of a Billy Graham quote.  When asked how much money a rich man left when he died Billy Graham remarked – He left it all.  Everything that we have belongs to God.  He expects us to use it wisely and use it for His glory.  We will not need any money in Heaven.  You can’t take it with you.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

PRAY WITH CONFIDENCE



When I was a young man I did not have a lot of confidence. I played Baseball. I was a good defensive player but I did not have a lot of success in the batter’s box. The coach told me that I had to be confident in my swing. He told me that I did not believe I could hit the ball. I tried to improve. I tried to believe that I could hit the ball.Then he tried another approach. He said for me to see myself hitting the ball. Imagine I could hit every ball pitched to me. Then imagine hitting the ball and running to first base. See it in my mind. I tried that. Again, I was not very successful. Then he gave up. He told me to just do the best I can and leave it in the hands of the Almighty. The next time I stepped up to the plate I said a little prayer. God, I’ll swing the bat. You will have to make sure I hit it. It worked. I got a hit. In fact I got several more hits. I wasn’t the best but I wasn’t the worse. The coach said he could tell that I had developed confidence that I could hit. I had confidence all right. I had confidence in God. Sometimes we lack confidence when we say a prayer. Maybe we think God isn’t listening. Maybe we think our prayer isn’t important to God. We must pray with confidence knowing that He will hear and Respond.
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Thursday, June 21, 2012

GONE FISHING



My wife and I decided to go fishing. We were going to a nearby lake. We got everything together.
Rod & Reel, worms, chairs, ice chest, sandwiches, chips, crackers, fried chicken, sweaters in June, and we headed out for the lake. Once we arrived I tried out 6 parking spaces. None suited her. We finally settled on a spot 300 feet from the lake. We put rocks under all four wheels so the car couldn't roll into the lake. I looked for the right size rocks ( that one is dirty ) for 30 minutes. Then I unloaded everything. All of it. People thought we were going to camp out for a week. Then it was time to fish. I thought we were ready. Mosquito spray, sunglasses, caps are all necessary for fishing. It is finally time to get down to fishing. I baited her hook ( didn’t hurt the worm ). She threw it into the water. I baited my hook and prepared to throw it into the water. She yells " I've got a bite " so I go over to help. We pull in her line. Worm's gone. I re-baited her hook. She threw it into the water. I go back to my Rod & Reel. Worm's dead. Stiff as a board. I pull it off and rebait my hook. I get ready to cast it upon the water. She yells again " I've got a bite " so I go over to help again. We pull in her line. Worm's gone. I re-bait her hook. She throws it in the water. Again I go back to my rod & reel. Worm's dead. Stiff as a board. I say to heck with it and throw it into the water. She yells " I've got a bite " so I lay down my rod & reel and run to help her. My brand new beautiful rod and reel slides toward the lake. A fish is taking it away. I step on my brand new beautiful rod & reel to stop it from taking a swim in the lake. I hear snap, crackle and pop. Just like the cereal. I help her reel in her 2 inch fish. She says " Honey, have your caught anything?" Needless to say that is a fish tale. Luke Chapter 5 tells about Simon and his friends fishing. They didn’t catch anything. Jesus told them to go out further in the water. They did and caught more fish than they could take into their boat. Sometimes we have to keep trying until the time is right. There is a valuable lesson in this fishing trip. Are you discouraged? You had big dreams. Life disappointed you? Jesus said for them to launch out into the deep and let down your nets. If you find yourself at the end of your rope, depend on the power of the Lord. His presence will make a difference.
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Tuesday, June 12, 2012

TALENTS



Many years ago my Sunday School Teacher asked me to stay after class. What did I do now? The others got up and left. I was there alone with the Teacher. Everyone called him Mr. Carl. That was his first name. He was called Mr. Carl because he was respected by everyone. He was a man of few words. He said – John, I want you to teach next Sunday. I was shocked. I reminded him that I was only 17 years old. I was a just another boy in the class. He told me that he had a talk with God and God wanted me to teach the class next Sunday. He said that I had a talent and God wanted me to use it. He said I needed to study the lesson and read the Bible and be prepared for next Sunday. He stood to his feet, said see you next Sunday, turned and left the room. I remember the first lesson was about Joseph and his coat of many colors. That was 53 years ago. I have been teaching ever since that first Sunday. I remember the Parable of the Talents. I was the man with only 1 talent – Teaching Sunday School. You have at least one talent. You may have more than one. When you are called upon to use your talents, use them for the glory of God.
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Monday, June 4, 2012

FOLLOW THE LEADER



I was surfing on the TV and came across the movie about General Patton. He was in a hospital. He strutted around with a stick in his right hand and was striking the palm of his left hand. He was looking at the wounded soldiers as he walked. Some had bandages around their forehead. You could see blood on the bandages. Some had an arm in a sling. Blood was clearly seen on the bandages. Some were standing with crutches. Most of them had one foot off the floor, wrapped in bandages. They all looked weak and injured. He began to talk about how they needed troops on the line. He told them about their friends dying on the battlefield. He talked about how they would never see them alive again. He talked about them giving their life for their country. Then he talked about those wounded soldiers standing in front of him. He said some of them only had minor wounds. He said they could still hold a rifle. He said they could still fight. He told them to throw down their crutches, pick up a rifle and follow him. Some of them did just that. That was long ago. What about now? God is asking us to follow Him. We may have flaws. We all have troubles. But we can still follow Him. He told Moses to follow Him. Moses was in the field tending sheep. He asked Moses to face the Pharaoh. He was to tell the Pharaoh to free the Israelites. Moses said that he would follow but facing the Pharaoh was asking too much. He couldn’t do that by himself. Following turned out to be a tough job. But he did it. God is asking you to follow Him. It is a tough job. But you can do it. Will you throw down your crutches of dependency, pick up your rifle of righteousness and follow Him into battle with Satan?
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Thursday, May 24, 2012

GOD SPEAKS



I attended Church this past Sunday. It was a Sunday like every other Sunday. It is the middle of May in South Carolina. It is warm. 60 degrees early in the morning. It will be close to 80 by lunch. I spoke to everyone I passed as I entered the church. I sat beside my wife. We were sitting in our usual seats. Then I shook hands with everyone around me. I listened to the piano and the organ music. It was beautiful. I watched the choir members as they entered. Our Pastor and Choir Director took their places. I listened to the opening song. I stood and sat down at all the right times. Then it was time for the Pastor to speak. I settled in for a 30 minute Sermon. Then he started talking to ME. Why was he talking to ME? What did I do to upset him? How did he know that I needed this Sermon? I listened and took everything to heart. It was a blessing. After thinking about it I came to the conclusion that the right scripture shared at the right time is God talking to a heart in need. The Holy Spirit inspired specific people to record His Holy Word in the Bible. The word of God is specific and personal. It is meant for us and is to be used for our times of special need. We could be reading our Bible and a specific verse jumps out at us. God is speaking His word directly to our heart’s need. Whether you are reading the Bible or listening to a Sermon, God speaks to you when you need it. Listen for His voice.
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BLOG - CONTINUED

I have decided to continue my blog. I have deleted 40 or 50 spam comments in the past couple of days. I had 18 more when I checked this morning. I am going to continue to delete them and continue my blog. I don't know what happened to the comments from my friends. Some of them have been deleted. All were deleted from my last 25 or 30 posts. I don't know how to stop the spam so I am going to forget about it and continue posting. Thanks for all the e mail and comments about this problem. God bless you all.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

BLOG TROUBLES

I have had trouble with my blog for the past few weeks. Spam has been posted to most all my posts. There are ads for ladies pocketbooks and all types of medications. Sometimes I have 20 or 30 every day. Comments from my regular readers have been deleted. I am working on it now. I hope to have this situation corrected soon. I don't understand how this happens but I'm working on it. God bless you all.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

MY FRIEND

I am losing a friend. He is a very close friend. I have not known him for very long. I have friends that have been close to me for almost 70 years. This is a new friend when you think of the years. He has been my friend for 2 or 3 years. He is a close friend. He and his wife visited our Sunday School Class a couple of years ago. There were two seats empty beside my wife and me. He sat down beside me and shook my hand. I said welcome to our class. He didn’t say much but neither did I. We listened to the Teacher. We spoke after class and I introduced my wife and met his wife. We didn’t see them until the next Sunday. He took his seat beside me. That’s when we became friends. We have Wednesday night services at our church. Most Southern Baptist Churches have Wednesday night services. We have a meal and then a lesson taught by our Pastor. Someone else was sitting beside me at the table so we pulled up an extra seat. He sat beside me and his wife sat beside my wife. It was vacation time so all four of us went on vacation. We had a wonderful two week vacation in Hawaii. He didn’t have a lot to say while we were on vacation. He was quiet. He and his wife are great people. They love the Lord. We returned from vacation and settled in to our normal routine. Then his wife called me on the phone. My friend was in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease. As I write this, there are tears in my eyes. They spill over and run down down my cheeks. They fall on the keyboard. I can’t talk about it. I can write the words but I can’t say them. When I try to talk about it my voice breaks and I cry. I am afraid that he is going to be gone soon. I just got home from Church tonight. I thought about him as I sat at the table. During the Pastor’s prayer I pressed my napkin to my eyes and I cried. I’m going to visit him tomorrow. I want to give him a hug before he slips away.

JESUS LIVES IN BELIEVERS



We have had the same neighbor for 47 years. We are not only neighbors, we are close friends. We have been to ball games together. We go to Church together. We are in the same Sunday School Class. We have shared meals together. We have made ice cream together. There was the time I had the flu. I was in the bed 2 weeks. My wife waited on me like I was a baby. She kept the orange juice flowing. She gave me medicine. She kept me company while I read the newspaper. It was a Saturday morning. I was reading the paper, drinking orange juice as she sat by my bedside reading a book. We heard a noise outside. She walked to the window and opened the curtain so I could look outside. There was my neighbor cutting my grass. He didn’t have a big fancy riding mower. He was using his old push mower. It was a hot morning. He was sweating as he pushed the mower across my yard. He didn’t look up from his work. He just kept pushing. He does not expect a thank you for his hard work. In fact he would be insulted if I thanked him. That’s the kind of friend I have for a neighbor. He and I have an unbreakable bond. We care for each other. We have shared good times and bad times. That’s the way it is between us and Jesus. We share in His crucifixion. We share in His resurrection. He died for us and He lives within us. This allows us to live by faith, walk free from sin’s bondage and to produce spiritual fruit by means of Jesus living within us. Galatians 2:20 says – “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives within me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Does Christ live in you?
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Saturday, April 14, 2012

THE GIFT



It was the time of the crucifixion. Pilate turned Jesus over to the crowd. The soldiers led Him to the cross. It was a terrible time. We have read the verses hundreds of times. We know about the crown of thorns. We know how the nails were driven into His hands and feet. He suffered. We read about the burial and the resurrection. I read the facts during Bible Study. I didn’t understand the passage about the gift. Maybe I read over it too fast and missed it. Jesus knew He was going to die. He knew about the tomb. He knew about the resurrection. He knew He would be going to Heaven. He looked down from the cross to see His earthly family. Verse 25 says “Near the cross of Jesus stood His mother, His mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw His mother there and the disciple whom He loved standing nearby, He said to her, “Woman, here is your son,” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home. This disciple was John. Jesus knew that His mother would be alone. He gave her John to be her son. John was to take His place with His mother. This was His gift to His mother. She would be the mother of John. This was the gift of a mother to John. That was a special gift given from the Cross while Jesus suffered and died for our sins.
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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

BURDENS



I have a neighbor who is in poor health. Her legs hurt. Her back hurts. Her head hurts. She has problems with her teeth. She has problems with her eyes. She has all sorts of health issues. Every conversation always gets around to her illness. She stays at home inside with her sickness all day. She never leaves her home. During our many conversations I have encouraged her to become more active. I ask her to walk to the end of her driveway and back home just for exercise. I have tried to help her for years and I’m still trying. She has a burden. Most of it is in her mind. I believe all she needs to do is get out and live her life. Make friends. Go to church. Help someone else with their burdens. When you help someone else with their burdens your load becomes a little lighter. God put us here on this earth to help others. Are you helping someone carry their load?
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Sunday, March 25, 2012

PRAYER TIME



There are many people without work right now. Some have been laid off from their job. Some plants have closed their doors. The economy is not in very good shape. I consider myself fortunate in my career. I was discharged from the United States Air Force in December 1965 after 4 years service. I found a job before the end of December. The company I worked for was a very good company. After 20 years on the job the company was sold. It was sold 4 times over the years. I worked at the same job from December 1965 to June of 2007. I really enjoyed my career. In my 40 years I only missed 1 day. I always worked the first shift. I usually worked from 8 am until 5 pm. I was a day worker. I always started my day with a prayer. Sometimes I prayed beside my bed. Sometimes I prayed in the den. Sometimes I prayed in the kitchen. My thoughts in the morning were always focused on the Lord. My morning prayer set up my day working for the Lord. As you start your day look up to the Lord and ask for His guidance and blessings. Ask him to be your partner on the job. With Him at your side you can’t go wrong. Think about it. Some of you have a lifetime of work ahead of you. You need the company.
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Thursday, March 8, 2012

THE RESUME OF JESUS CHRIST



This is not an original from me. I received this via e mail.

The Resume of Jesus Christ
Address: Ephesians 1:20
Phone: Romans 10:13
Website: The Bible . Keywords: Christ, Lord, Savior and Jesus
_____________________________________________________
Objective
My name is Jesus -The Christ. Many call me Lord! I've sent you my resume because I'm seeking the top management position in your heart. Please consider my accomplishments as set forth in my resume.
_____________________________________________________________________
Qualifications
I founded the earth and established the heavens, (See Proverbs 3:19)
I formed man from the dust of the ground, (See Genesis 2:7)
I breathed into man the breath of life, (See Genesis 2:7)
I redeemed man from the curse of the law, (See Galatians 3:13)
The blessings of the Abrahamic Covenant comes upon your life through me, (See Galatians 3:14)
_____________________________________________________________________
Occupational Background
I've only had one employer, (See Luke 2:49 ).
I've never been tardy, absent, disobedient, slothful or disrespectful.
My employer has nothing but rave reviews for me, (See Matthew 3:15 -17)
_____________________________________________________________________
Skills Work Experiences
Some of my skills and work experiences include: empowering the poor to be poor no more, healing the brokenhearted, setting the captives free, healing the sick, restoring sight to the blind and setting at liberty them that are bruised, (See Luke 4:18).
I am a Wonderful Counselor, (See Isaiah 9:6). People who listen to me shall dwell safely and shall not fear evil, (See Proverbs 1:33 ).
Most importantly, I have the authority, ability and power to cleanse you of your sins, (See I John 1:7-9)
_____________________________________________________________________
Educational Background
I encompass the entire breadth and length of knowledge, wisdom and understanding, (See Proverbs 2:6).
In me are hid all of the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, (See Colossians 2:3).
My Word is so powerful; it has been described as being a lamp unto your feet and a light unto your path, (See Psalms 119:105).
I can even tell you all of the secrets of your heart, (See Psalms 44:21).
_____________________________________________________________________
Major Accomplishments
I was an active participant in the greatest Summit Meeting of all times, (See Genesis 1:26 ).
I laid down my life so that you may live, (See II Corinthians 5:15 ).
I defeated the arch enemy of God and mankind and made a show of them openly, (See Colossians 2:15 ).
I've miraculously fed the poor, healed the sick and raised the dead!
There are many more major accomplishments, too many to mention here. You can read them on my website, which is located at: www dot - the BIBLE. You don't need an Internet connection or computer to access my website.
_____________________________________________________________________
References
Believers and followers worldwide will testify to my divine healing, salvation, deliverance, miracles, restoration and supernatural guidance.
_____________________________________________________________________
Summation
Now that you've read my resume, I'm confident that I'm the only candidate uniquely qualified to fill this vital position in your heart. In summation, I will properly direct your paths, (See Proverbs 3:5-6), and lead you into everlasting life, (See John 6:47 ). When can I start? Time is of the essence, (See Hebrews 3:15 ).
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Monday, March 5, 2012

OBEY



She was a young mother. It was her first child. Like every child he had his own sleep schedule. The early morning feedings left her sleepy. Then he started walking. He was into everything. He knocked things off the table. He turned over everything that wasn’t nailed down. She told him again and again to be careful. “Don’t” was a word she repeated again & again. He was wild. He would not obey. It is the same with our Heavenly father. Our Heavenly Father knows our human nature. He knows we want things our own way. We must learn to obey our Father. When we obey we put ourselves into position to be ready for things God has planned for us. Are you living a life that prepares you to obey and serve our Heavenly Father?
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Friday, February 17, 2012

A LOVING CHURCH



Is your church a loving church? I have visited many churches in my life. I have been to a church where I felt love the instant I walked in the door. People smiled at each other. They spoke to one another. They shook hands. They greeted everyone in Christian love. It was very apparent that love was in the church. After the service they stood around and talked for 5 or 10 minutes. The Pastor walked to the exit doors. As the congregation left the church they spoke to the Pastor. I heard remarks about the sermon. I heard plans to meet for lunch at local restaurants. I have also visited churches where I did not feel that love. People frowned instead of smiling. They did not make eye contact when I spoke to them. They nodded their head instead of speaking. They shook hands but I did not feel the warmth. There was no love in the church. After the service they ran from the church. There was no talking with each other. There were no plans to get together for lunch. The church was empty in three minutes. You can always tell if the church is a church with Christian Love. Sometimes the Pastor has to turn out the lights to get the members out of church. What kind of church is your church? Do you have the “Turn out the lights” kind of love?
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Saturday, February 11, 2012

THE TEACHER



I remember when I was in the 7th or 8th grade. A paper was due in Mrs. Foster’s Literature Class. We were to write a paper about what we wanted to do later in life. I grew up on a farm. I wanted to be a farmer. I wrote about growing things. I wrote about the smell and feel of a handful of dirt. The dirt seemed to be alive. It was warm in my hand as I pulled it near my nose to smell. I let it filter through my fingers as it fell to the earth. I walked across the field and kicked at the hay drying in the sun waiting to be baled. I could smell the musty aroma. I ended with; I want to be a farmer, God’s servant in the field. Mrs. Foster graded the papers. Near the end of the class she said she wanted to read one of the papers. She read mine aloud before the class. In a way I was proud. In another way I was embarrassed. Some of my classmates sort of snickered. They thought my aspirations were set too low. At the end of the class Mrs. Foster told me to wait a moment. She said, you may become a farmer. You may learn a way to feed the world. When you get as old as me, remember a long time ago when you took a pencil in your hand and made an old woman proud. I walked toward the door and she called my Name. She said, Johnny. I have to know something. Did you make the dirt smudge bellow the last line intentionally? I said yes. She said, you’re pretty smart. I walked toward the door. I turned around and said, Mrs. Foster. You’re pretty smart too. As I stepped into the hall I heard the rustle of tissue from the box she kept on her desk. I wiped a damp eye with my shirt sleeve as I walked down the hall.
Jesus was called The Teacher. He taught the disciples and teaches us through the Bible every day. If you read the Bible and study it as you read you will learn from The Teacher, our Lord, Jesus Christ.
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Monday, February 6, 2012

THE KISS



The light in here is steady. It is pure. I remember lying in bed reading at night by a kerosene lamp. The light was moving on the page. It flickered. It was alive. It made the words alive on the paper. Patrick Henrys’ Give me liberty or give me death. Nathan Hales’ I regret I only have one life to live for my country. The word of God, The Lord is my shepherd. I shall not want. I could hear those words. They rocked me to sleep at night. When I was almost asleep I closed the book. I didn’t have to mark the page. I could remember where I stopped reading. I could hear the voices. Finally the book was on the table near the bed. My arms were still by my side. The cover was just a little low on my chest. One eye was shut while the other was barely open. I peeped at the flame flickering on the wall. I closed my peeping eye as I heard her come into the room. She walked over by my bedside and pulled the cover the rest of the way up to my chin. She leaned over for a quick kiss on my cheek. I could smell her touch. She smelled of cornbread. Her hand smelled of washed dishes. Then I peeped again as she walked over to the lamp. She cupped her hand behind the globe and blew a quick puff. She didn’t blow it on the flame. She blew into her cupped hand. The quick puff of air went down the globe and snuffed the flame. I closed my peeping eye and slept. I’m getting old now. One of these nights soon I will feel His hand as He cups it around me. I will feel the puff of his breath as I shut my eyes in sleep. When I awake I will be in my Heavenly Home. I wait now with one eye peeping, waiting for the touch of the Master’s hand.
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Friday, January 27, 2012

PEACE AND PROSPERITY



Have you known someone who has been an inspiration to you - someone who didn't have the best breaks in life but made the best of life? Maybe it was a parent, a grandparent, a neighbor, a school teacher or someone you just watched as they lived their life to the fullest. There are those who just have it right. They seem to know why God put them here on this earth. It isn't hard for them to live a full life. It just was natural to them. Some have to work hard at it. They stray from the path too often. They need a lot of prayer. The Bible says in 2nd Chronicles Chapter 14 that king Asa was a good man. He removed the foreign altars from the high places. He commanded Judah to seek the Lord God of his ancestors and to obey His laws and commands. No one was at war with him during these years for the Lord gave him peace and prosperity. He followed God and helped others along the way. He was a good man. What about you? Do you have it right? Do you know why God put you here on this earth? Are you an inspiration to others?
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Thursday, January 19, 2012

ARE YOU READY?



It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon. My wife and I were in the mountains to see the color of the fall leaves. It was the perfect time. They were at the peak of their beauty. We decide to take a chair lift all the way to the top of Lookout Point. There was a line. The lift ran once every hour. The clock said we needed to wait 10 more minutes. We stepped into the line waiting our turn. There was a young boy and girl walking up the street. They were holding hands. Two young people out on a Sunday afternoon wanting to have a great time together. They stepped into line behind us. They continued to talk and laugh as more people got in line behind them. The line started moving and we noticed a sign which said the trip would cost one dollar and everyone must have the right change. I looked in my wallet and I had two tens and two ones. We inched forward. The young couple behind us were still laughing and talking. They paid no attention to the sign. We paid our two dollars and had a seat in the lift. The couple behind us started looking for money. They didn't have the correct change. They had to step aside. They were told they could take the next lift. As we rode along on the lift I was thinking about the Kingdom of Heaven. We know what it takes to go inside the gates. We must believe in Christ. We must be Christians. There are so many that are not ready. Maybe they haven't read the sign. Are you ready today?
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Saturday, January 14, 2012

RECALL



If you read a newspaper you are aware of re-calls of farm products lately. You read about lettuce recalls. Inspectors have found bacteria in the soil that can be linked to life threatening disease. The same is true for cantelopes. It seems there are new products that are recalled every day. The very things that nourish us also makes us sick. We have inspectors and we have all sorts of regulations to protect us in these harmful situations. These regulations are a headache to farmers but the importance of safety can not be overstated. The same can be said of the perfect word of God. When we read our Bible we find it has always been pure. We can trust it for our spiritual nutrition. We can continue to find peace and security in God's Holy Word. When you read your Bible be assured that it is pure and perfect. Read it every day and learn about the Lord our God. God bless you.
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Saturday, January 7, 2012

PRISON



A few years ago our Church started a Prison Ministry. I was part of a group chosen to study the needs of our local City/County Jail. I met with the person in charge of the jail and asked him how we could help. After discussing all the options we decided our best help would be to provide Prisoners Kits with basic needs. We would purchase wash cloths, soap, toothbrush, tooth paste, disposable razors, pencils, envelopes, stamps and anything else we wanted to include in a clear zip lock bag. We would bring them to the front desk and give them to the person on duty once per month. They would distribute them where they were needed. We included a small bible and a religious tract in each bag. Our church group met and prepared the bags and I volunteered to take them to the jail. The first time I walked into the jail I was shocked. It was dark and dreary inside the jail. I could hear cursing and yelling in the area behind the desk. The guard was on the phone so I had to wait a few minutes. Finally he asked me what I needed. I explained why I was there and he said he was expecting me. He thanked me for the bags and I left. I could not imagine how it would feel to be locked in one of those cells. Paul was in prison many times. Ephesians is one of 4 prison letters of Paul. While he was in prison he continued to serve the Lord. His inner strength saw him through many hardships. We all face trials of hardship today. God will provide us with strength. Do you have the strength to face your trials?
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Thursday, January 5, 2012

ARE YOU SURE?



When did you accept Christ as your Savior? I am almost 70 years old. In my time I have talked with many Christians. Most of them are sure of their Christianity. Most of them can tell you when they opened their heart to Jesus. They can name the time and place. They can tell you their age at the time of conversion. Some can tell about the time they were baptized. They can go into detail about the things they felt at that time. They can name the Preacher who brought them to Christ. They can tell you everything in detail. Some are not so sure. I talked with a man who was 65 years old. He said he was saved when he was 10 years old. He said he was Baptized on his birthday. He said he did not know if he understood what he was doing at that time. He had doubts. Maybe he was too young. He asked what I thought he should do. I told him I believed he needed to pray about it. Then if he was not sure he better make sure. Eternity is a long time. It is truly forever. If you want to spend eternity with God you must make sure you are a Christian. Jesus has prepared a place in Heaven for you. Are you sure?
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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

HAPPY NEW YEAR



2011 is almost behind us. It is nearly gone. It has been a good year for some and it has been not so good for others. Have you had a good year? Has the economy got you down? Have you had a hard time paying your bills? What about health issues? Did you have a healthy 2011? Are you happy? How did 2011 treat you? I hope you had a wonderful 2011 and you are looking forward to 2012. I believe the number one thing that is going to determine how you fare in 2012 is your attitude. How do you approach each day? Do you wake up thinking about problems? What about family problems? Are you working on a relationship with your children? What about problems with your husband or wife? What about problems at work? Are you trying to get a promotion? Do you want to get another job? Are you stuck in a rut? I guarantee you are going to have a lousy day if you wake up with all your problems on your mind. Do you wake up with the attitude that what is going to happen will happen. You just leave it up to fate? Leaving it up to fate allows all the bad things to creep into your life. You have to want to have a good day and a good life. It is up to you. I have a suggestion. Write the following on a note pad and place it on the nightstand beside your bed. Read it out loud every morning until you say it without looking at the paper. “This is going to be a great day. Good things are going to happen to me today. God is going to do wonders in my family life and my work life. Everyone I meet will look at the smile on my face and it will be contagious. God is leading the way. He is my protection and my guiding light. Thank you God for your blessings.” After you read the note, jump out of bed with a smile on your face. Add a spring to your step. Really look forward to a great day. Give it a try!
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Sunday, December 18, 2011

STAY FOCUSED



I have a friend who is a Highway Patrolman. He has been a Patrolman for about 12 years. He has been in law enforcement for most of his adult life. He was an MP (Military Policeman) in the army for 5 years. He has been known to tell about these experiences for hours. Some of the stories he tells will make you laugh until tears flow. After the military he was a city policeman in his home town. He did that for a while and then decided to join the Highway Patrol. After a few years on the road the DOT decided to have all truck drivers get a special license called a CDL License. My friend was selected to give tests for this license. One of the most difficult things for truck drivers is steering an 18 wheel Semi through Barrels and Cones. He has tried every suggested thing in the drivers manual to help drivers through this maze of cones. Everything he tried left cones flying through the air. Finally a driver came for the test and passed with ease. He didn’t touch a cone. At the end of the test the first thing he did was ask the driver the secret. The driver told him that he kept his focus on the end of the line of cones. He never looked to the right or left. He looked straight ahead. He did not lose his focus. We have to do the same thing. There is a gate we must navigate through in our Christian life. We can not go to the right or left. We have to stay focused. We have to keep our eyes on Jesus. When we keep our eyes on Jesus we will pass through the gate without worry or fear. Are your eyes focused on Jesus?
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Sunday, December 11, 2011

BLESSINGS




One day last week my wife asked (told) me to go to the grocery
Store. She started telling me the things she needed. I knew
there were too many things for me to remember so I found a
paper and pencil. A dozen eggs, milk, pepper, napkins, celery,
a bag of carrots and a loaf of bread. No problem. I made it to
the grocery store, found a cart and started shopping. I have
been there several times so I knew exactly where things were
located. I gathered all the items, paid and carried them home.
She looked at my list, checked everything off, smiled and said
I did a good job. She did everything but pat me on the head.

Later on that night I got ready for bed. I stretched out with a
sigh and reached for my Bible. I opened it at random as I
usually do before I fall asleep. I looked and started reading
Psalms 103. The first 5 verses reminded me of my grocery
list. It was a lists of God’s blessings. Verse 3 says He forgives
all our sins and heals our diseases. Verse 4 says He redeems
our life from the pit and crowns us with love and compassion.
Verse 5 says He satisfies your desires with good things so
that your youth is renewed like the Eagle’s. These 5 blessings
are wonderful. We should count our blessings every day and
thank God for each one. Do you count your blessings?
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Thursday, December 1, 2011

HYPOCRITE



We’ve all seen it before and we will see it again. A famous
person is on TV giving their opinion on every issue. He is a
very important person. People listen to him. He was elected
to Congress or to the Senate. He’s a big shot. He has a driver
to drive him around Washington. He’s a guest on all the talk
shows. He has been on The Tonight Show. He appears on
Letterman’s show. Then the surprise of the year. He didn’t
pay his taxes. Maybe he has a mistress. He sent some emails
that were inappropriate. Something happened to him and it’s
all over. He is thrown out of congress or the senate. His wife
left him and he disappeared from all the talk shows. People
laugh at him. You join in the conversation. You tell everyone
about all the things you read in the newspaper or things you
have seen on TV which tell of this VIP”s problems. You join
others who laugh about his problems.
You are guilty of the sin of Judging him. You are guilty of the
sin of enjoying his downfall. Matthew 7:4 - How can you
say to your brother, Let me take the speck out of your eye,
when all the time you have a plank in your eye? Think about
it.
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Monday, November 28, 2011

THE GOOD NEWS



It was the Spring of the year and time for planting. Farmer Jones had to get ready. The year was 1950. That was a time when there were small farms still alive in America. Farmers raised most of their food. They didn’t have money to go grocery shopping. Farming was hard work. The fields had to be made ready for planting. First of all you had to remove big rocks from the field. You can’t plant crops on rocky fields. The next step was to break ground, so big plows were put to work. Then straight, even rows were laid out across the field. There were a few more rocks to be removed. The big plow unearthed them all over the field. Then seeds were planted in the rows. Then Farmer Jones prayed for the right amount of sun and rain.
We are like Farmer Jones in our Christian life. We must prepare ourself to follow Jesus. We remove sin from our life like Farmer Jones removed rocks from the field. Sin is like the rocks that hinders our Christian growth. We plant our seeds by telling the good news to non-believers.Then we pray for their salvation. We must continue to follow Jesus. Jesus asked the disciples if they would continue to follow Him after all the others had deserted. Peter answered – Why would we follow anyone else? Will you follow Jesus today?
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Friday, November 11, 2011

GEORGE BEVERLY SHEA



George Beverly Shea is 102 years old. He said - Billy Graham
called me in 1947 and asked me to become a part of his team
to “sing a quiet little song before I speak.” For more than 60
years Mr. Shea was the signature soloist at Billy Graham
crusades. According to Guinness World Records he has sung
before more people than anyone else – an estimated combined
live audience of 220 million people. He has recorded more
than 70 albums. He says he sings to the glory of God. He
sings with his voice and his heart – he gives all he has in
every song he sings.
This reminds me of the widow’s mite. People walked forward
and placed large amounts of money in the offering. She only
had one coin to give – and she gave it. When Jesus looked at
her He was pleased. Mark 12:43 says – Truly I tell you,
this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the
others. I believe He must have smiled.
I wonder how Jesus feels when he hears George Beverly Shea
sing. When He hears that deep loud voice sing Just As I Am
I can see that smile on His face. Can You?
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Thursday, November 3, 2011

INHERITANCE




He was a young man just starting out in life. He had not had it
easy. He grew up in an orphanage. He finished high school
as an average student. Then it was time to get a job. He was
able to get a job as a loader on a dock at a big warehouse. It
was hard work. The pay was not very good but it was a job.
He worked there 3 years and was promoted to Assistant to the
Foreman. It wasn’t a big promotion but it did mean a little more
money. He was a loner and a hard worker. It was time for the
Foreman to retire. He hoped to get the job as a new Foreman.
That didn’t happen. Someone from the front office was made
Foreman. He kept working, hoping for the best. Then he got a
telephone call. His father tracked him down. His mother left
him in an orphanage and his father did not know he existed.
When his mother died there was a letter in a safety deposit
box telling the story. It turns out his father was wealthy. Time
passed and he inherited a fortune. He was set for life. He did
not have to work again. From that moment on he had all that
he could imagine. It was a happy ending.
As a Christian you are entitled to the resources of your Heavenly Father.You may be unaware of all you have in your relationship with Christ. You can talk with Him today through your prayers. He will forgive you for your sins. He will give you the power to forgive others who have wronged you. He can heal you of any disease. He can pour out a shower of blessings on you. Best of all you will be with him in Heaven through out eternity. I ask you to become aware of your inheritance today. Get into your Bible and find out about your Heavenly Father.
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Monday, October 24, 2011

YOUR CROSS




A man lost his job. The Plant closed. It moved overseas. We have all heard this story. He worked at the Plant all his working life. Over 20 years. The Pension is gone. The health insurance is gone. He has a wife and two children. What is he going to do? He was a mechanic when he was a young man. He applied for a job as a mechanic. He applied at 5 different Garages. No luck. He started taking odd jobs. He worked in yards. He cut grass. He raked leaves. He could not make car payments. He lost his car. All he had left was an old pick up truck. He could not pay the phone bill. No more phone. His wife was upset and the kids were upset. The next thing to go was Cable TV. He couldn’t pay the bill. He would have lost the TV but it was paid for long ago. He cut back on the food bill. No more expensive cuts of steak. No more eating out at his favorite place. He was worried about his home. He put back every extra penny to make the house payment. What was his greatest loss? He had always gone to Church. He had not been there on Sunday morning for weeks. Why did God let this happen?
The greatest loss is the loss of your own self – and the possibility of being separated from God. All of us have personal crosses to bear. You may have a health issue. You may have an issue with your children. You may have a problem with a relative. You may have a problem with a neighbor. You have a cross to bear. We must take up our personal crosses, endure the losses of life and remain a follower of Christ.
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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

TRUST GOD

Do you ever look back in time and remember what you were doing then? Where were you and what were you doing Friday November 22, 1963? That was an important date in History. President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dealey Plaza, Dallas, Texas. He was fatally shot while traveling with his wife Jacqueline, Texas Governor John Connally and Connally’’s wife Nellie, in a Presidential Motorcade. At that time I was in The United States Air Force, on a Strategic Air Force Train. The train was in Gold, Pennsylvania. I remember the shock. Everyone was very quiet. You could hear a pin drop. No one could believe it. We thought that it was getting to be awful in the United States of America. That was in 1963. Things have really changed. Where were you and what were you doing September 11, 2001? The 9/11 attacks were a series of four attacks upon the United States in New York City and the Washington, D.C. area. People had different reactions. Some were crying. Some were mad. Others were in shock. I was at work at my desk. I remember people talking about an attack on America. I thought it was an accident. When you think back in time we realize God has a purpose in all things. At the time we can not believe what is happening. We don’t understand. We will never understand God’s reasons. The secret things belong to God. Deuteronomy 29:29 says – The secret things belong to The Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law. God has set a time and place for everything. As Christians we must trust God’s purposes, even when we don’t understand. He knows best.
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Friday, October 14, 2011

GROWING OLD




I remember being young. I remember playing marbles in our yard. I remember eagerly waiting for Santa Claus at Christmas. I remember going to Church and my Sunday School Teacher. I remember my mother telling me everything would be ok when I had a skinned knee. I remember going to school. I remember my first grade school teacher. I remember High School. I remember my four years in the Air Force. I remember getting married. Then I woke up one morning and I was 30 years old. It seems like I was 50 in the blink of an eye. Now I am almost 70. I’m feeling ok. I walk 3 miles every day but Sunday. I’m happy that my wife and I have celebrated 45 years of marriage. We are in pretty good health.
I have a friend who is suffering from dementia. I know someone else who does not know members of their own family. It seems that when you get old – it’s over. I read about a man who told his Pastor that he was worried he might forget God and God might forget him. His Pastor told him not to worry. God will never forget you. Isaih 46:4 says – “Even to your old age and gray hairs I am He, I am He who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you. I will sustain you and I will rescue you.” So you see, we have nothing to worry about because He will be there. You will never lose the love of God.
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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

FOCUS ON HEAVENLY THINGS



You’re standing in line at the grocery store. You hope the Ice Cream in your cart is not melting. Your mind starts wandering. I hope the car is still parked by that little sports car. With my luck the sports car left and a huge van is parked in the next space. I can just see the door of that van slamming into the side of my car. You look at the person’s shoes in front of you. I need to get some shoes like those. Wonder what store has them. You look at the woman ringing up the groceries on the cash register. She really has nice hair. I’ve always liked red hair. She sure is pretty. Look at her lips. She has a nice figure. Before you know it your mind is wandering in the wrong direction. As a man you must keep your eyes on the goal. You are trying to live like Jesus. The Devil will creep in if you let him. Matthew 6:25 says we are not to worry about what we eat or drink or what we wear. Life is more than food and the body more than the clothes we wear. Don’t worry about money or your car or your home. Keep your focus on God and your home in Heaven.
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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

JUST LISTEN




It had been a hard day at work. Everything that could go wrong, went wrong. The car wouldn’t start and he was late for work. There was an early meeting. He was late and he really didn’t have time to prepare. He had to make a big presentation. He knew it did not go well. After the meeting the boss had some unkind words. He promised he would do better next time. He had a phone call waiting when he returned to his desk. A customer complaint. He listened to the customer and he knew the customer had a legitimate complaint. He handled it but had a bad feeling about it. The morning dragged on and it was time for lunch. He had a salad and soup for lunch at the local cafĂ©. It didn’t sit well with him. After lunch he handled a few things he had been working with and it was finally time to go home. The car wouldn’t start again. He raised the hood and tinkered around with the battery cables. It finally started and he made it home. He flopped down in a chair with a loud sigh. He closed his eyes and rubbed them. What happened to me today? Why did God let all those things happen to me? He screamed at God “Why did you do this to me?” “Don’t you care?” Then he saw his new puppy cowering under the coffee table. The loud noise frightened him. He picked him up and gave him a hug. He poured out his troubles. The puppy licked his face and all was well. The puppy didn’t argue or give advice. It just listened.
Sometimes we just need to listen. When a friend unloads troubles on you, just listen. Your listening ear may be all they need, so they can hear what God is saying to them. Romans 12:15 “Rejoice with those who rejoice, mourn with those who mourn.”
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Sunday, September 25, 2011

THE HELPLESS




I was discussing a problem at work and someone said – God helps those who help themselves - That’s in the Bible. I didn’t think about it until later when I was reading my Bible at home. I tried to find it in the Bible. I couldn’t find it. I went on the internet and couldn’t find it. Suddenly I realized it’s not in the Bible. It doesn’t say – God helps those who help themselves. In fact it is a very different story. God helps those who can’t help themselves. God helped those who didn’t even realize they needed help. God sees things differently than we see them. We think we have our own solutions to our problems. We have pride in our abilities. We think we know it all. Sometimes He allows us to fail in order to show that we need Him. All of us have problems. Sometimes we are at the end of our rope. We think there is nothing else to be done. It’s over. We have to give up our home. It’s time for the Bank to take over. We can no longer make payments. Maybe there is sickness in your family. Cancer is anawful disease of our time. The doctor gives you a few months to live. There are no treatments that will work. It’s too late. The cancer has taken over your entire body. No! It’s time for God’s grace. God’s grace is there for people who recognize they can’t help themselves. Are you feeling helpless today? Go to God’s throne of grace.
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Friday, September 23, 2011

STAY THE COURSE




A man decide to go fishing. He gathered all his fishing gear. Rod and reel, net to scoop up the fish he hoped to catch, a couple of sandwiches and something to drink. He had on his lucky fishing hat with all the fish hooks and lucky doo dads in place. He even had a tube of sun screen. He was well prepared. He was ready for a day of fishing. He was on the way to the lake where he kept a small row boat. He hoped there would not be a lot of people ahead of him. He was early. Lately water skiing was popular. He hoped for a quiet day fishing. He arrived at lake side and parked his car, gathered all his gear and stepped Into the boat. He checked his oars. He slipped on his life jacket. He rowed out onto the lake. He fished about an hour and caught a couple of fish. He threw one back because it was too small. It was getting a little warm so he applied a little sun screen on his arms. He put bait on his hook and threw it into the water. Then he heard the noise. It was a motor boat. Here it came shooting across the lake with a man on skis gliding on the water behind the boat. It came near him between his fishing spot and the shore. The huge waves created by the motor boat pushed him out onto the lake. He rowed as fast as he could row trying to get closer to the shore. He heard the motor boat again. It was coming back for another run. This time it was on the other side and the waves gave him a big push. He was back to his original spot. They waved at him and he returned a wave of thanks. All was good again. He was happy.
Sometimes that is how it is with God. He allows things to come into our lives that are not so pleasant. Sickness in the family, problems at work or some other circumstance that upsets our plans. These things bring us closer to Him. These things encourage us to have our minds on things above, not on things here on earth. We sometimes drift away from Him. God uses these things to get us back on the right course. How are you responding to life’s difficulties?
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Sunday, September 4, 2011

THE LEAP OF FAITH



You are a little scared. You are not sure of yourself. You are facing a challenge. There is going to be a special program at Church. It is about the importance of giving. Stewardship. Tithing. The Pastor knows that you tithe. He wants you to actually stand up, walk up to the front of the church in front of everyone and talk. Are you kidding me? Me? I get nervous talking with one person. You actually think I am going to stand up in front of 200 plus people and talk. Forget it. I can’t do it. I wouldn’t know what to say. I will choke up. Finally after 2 days of talking with myself I agree to do it. I will give it a try. I tell the Pastor I will do it. Then I ask for suggestions. He says for me to just write down what I want to say and say it in front of a mirror. He says that is what he does with his sermon. Then he laughs. I run home and get a pencil and paper. I write and write. I change it 10 times. I write some more. I change it some more. Then I read it in front of a mirror. I never noticed my mouth looks funny when I talk. My mouth is tilted to one side. I hold my mouth straight and try again, and again, and again. I finally get to Church and it’s time. I feel my feet moving. Then it’s over and I am sitting in the pew again. I made it through. God gave me the strength.

One day God is going to give you a task. It could be a big thing or something simple. You are going to have doubts. You are going to be afraid. The request could come from someone else. God may have someone contact you. It could come to you in a dream. Just remember, God will not ask you to do anything unless He gives you the tools to do it. His part is to make sure you are prepared. Your job is to do it. He will do His part. It is up to you to do yours. Take the leap of faith.

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Saturday, August 27, 2011

REMEMBER ME



He parked the car, opened the door and walked across the Cemetery to the grave. He walked quietly and with reverence. His head was bowed. He had a troubled heart and you could tell it by his appearance. He had not been here for a while. It was probably a year ago. How could that be? He loved his parents. They had done everything for him. He had a good home. He had a good education. He had a good job. He had a family. He had a beautiful wife and three wonderful children. In general he had a great life. He owed it all to his Mom and Dad. They both made sacrifices for him. They made his life possible. Why had he not visited their graves? He had been busy lately. His work was demanding. His family needed his attention. He was a typical busy man. He knelt by the grave site and he wept quietly. He said a prayer and placed the flowers on the graves. One for Mom and one for Dad. Then he walked back to the car vowing to return again soon. Do you remember those who loved you?

Jesus was on the cross. He had suffered greatly. It was time for Jesus to die for our sins. A thief hung on a cross nearby. Luke 23:42-43 says – Jesus remember me when you come into your kingdom. Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.” Jesus remembered the thief on the cross. Jesus always remembers. Jesus remembers us wherever we are. He knows our every ache and pain. He knows when we need Him. Be like Jesus. Remember those you love.
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Thursday, August 25, 2011

HOPE FOR TOMORROW



It was my brother’s birthday. He would be 12 years old tomorrow. Birthday time was a special time at our house. There would be a cake. We would have friends over for a party. There would be games. We would have a great time. And at the center of all that would be my 12 year old brother. Everyone looked forward to the good times. My brother had hinted around that he wanted a special game. I forget the name of the game now but I remember it was a special game. It was the top of the line. We all kept wishing that he would get the gift. No one was around when we found the gift. It was wrapped in real thick paper and was hidden behind the sofa. We felt it and the weight seemed just about right. We shook it and it sounded right. We tried to look through the paper but it was too thick. Finally we raised up the tape and removed just a little corner of the paper. It was The Game. Just what he wanted. It was perfect. Then came the realization that we already knew the gift was The Game. All at once we realized that tomorrow would not be so special. We knew ahead of time. There was nothing to look for at the birthday party. There was no mystery. The excitement of hope was gone.

As Christians we hope for God’s glory that will be revealed in Heaven. We have anticipation. We look forward to a place so wonderful that we can not fathom it’s beauty. If we were given a preview of Heaven we could no longer bear to live in this world. Until we are called from this temporary home to our Heavenly Home we live in Hope for the future that awaits us. Be patient and live for Him. Glory to God in Heaven!
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Monday, August 22, 2011

GUARD YOUR TONGUE




I am a Sunday School Teacher. Some people refer to Sunday School as Bible Study. I call it Sunday School. During this time we study the Bible. We have a Quarterly which has a lesson for every Sunday covering a 3 month period. I use this as a guide and I try to stick to it. Sometimes a remark made by a Sunday School member takes me away from our Sunday lesson. I try to answer the question and get back to the lesson. Sometimes my answers are met with smiles and sometimes with frowns. I hope there are more smiles than frowns. After the lesson is over everyone tells me how much they enjoyed the lesson. At times I am not so blessed. Someone might disagree. I take all the remarks seriously. Some remarks made by others make us feel great. Some words made by others are like being stabbed by an enemy. Some words can hurt and others can give hope and encouragement.
That is why I guard my words. I go to the edge sometimes and then throw on the brakes. I always speak for God. The enemy is always present. The enemy is listening and wants to twist your words. Proverbs 16:24 tells us that Pleasant words are as honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones. Remember,as a Christian you speak for your Heavenly Father.
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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

HIS EYE IS ON THE SPARROW




It was a beautiful sunny day. His dad was taking him to the park. He was only 5 years old. He was looking forward to a great time. He finally arrived at the park. It was noisy. Children were running in every direction. Some were swinging. Some were on the sliding board. Some were playing on the hand bars. He wanted to play too but he was afraid. He didn’t want to leave his dad’s side to go to the play ground. He finally ran out on the field and went to the swings. He watched some boys swing for a while. Then there was an empty swing. He sat on the swing and pushed off. He was laughing and having a great time. He could see his dad watching him. Some people passed on the sidelines and all at once he couldn’t see his dad. He jumped from the swing and ran toward where his dad was standing earlier. Dad was there and he picked up his son and held him close. His dad could tell that the boy was afraid. He looked into his dad’s eyes and asked if he was watching him. His dad replied, “Yes I’m watching and I will not take my eyes off you.” That made the little boy happy and he ran back to the playground. It is a great feeling to know our Father in Heaven is watching over us. No matter the danger we face God is watching over us. His eyes are on us. Just like the words of the song – His eye is on the sparrow and I know He watches me.
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Monday, July 25, 2011

THE GLORY OF GOD


Like all Americans I remember the planes striking the Twin Towers on 9/11/2001. I watched in terror as the buildings tumbled to the ground. I watched the newscasts on every channel on TV. I heard all the personal stories. I heard about all the people who were killed. It was a time all of us will remember. It was a wake up call for all Americans. It happened on Tuesday. I was at work and everyone gathered around the TV in our Break Room. Everyone left their desks and we all watched together. Some were angry. A few cried. The following Sunday was very dramatic. The Church was full. It was very quiet. Everyone had a somber look. It was a time I will never forget. The Pastor had a moving message. The Choir had a Patriotic song. It was a moving experience for young and old alike. There have been many memorable services in the history of the church. The dedication of Solomon's temple was a memorable service. It took sever years and six months to complete the building. The people were anxious to worship God in His House. The Ark was put in it's place. There was a great orchestra and choir to lead the people in praising God. The Lord filled the temple with the cloud of glory which represented His presence.
We should have that same experience today. We need to claim His presence each time we assemble with fellow Christians. Matthew 18:20 - For where two or three gather in My name, there am I with them. When you go into Church this Sunday morning look for Him to be there with you. Feel His presence. Praise His name. Feel the glory of God.
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FOR GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

GOD IS OUR SALVATION



I recently found myself in the Airport in Atlanta, Georgia. The Airport in Atlanta is a big place. People are everywhere. Most of them have a " Carry On " bag around their shoulder and some even have a bag that must be checked. Sometimes there is a family with a couple of kids. Then there are people who are on business. A lot of them have something in common. They are lost. Where is the A Corridor? What Corridor or we in now? Is this B or C? Which way do we go now? Someone says to go downstairs and get on the train. When you get on the train you will be at Corridor A. Get off at Corridor C and go upstairs. Then look for Gate 25. It can get confusing. I finally found The D Corridor and began looking for Gate 12. Right in front of me I saw a man holding his Boarding Pass. He was looking at the sign showing all the gates and the delayed flights. Just a few feet away was a black bag with a small boy leaning on it. He had a toy in his hand. I waited just for a moment because I didn't want to frighten the boy. Somehow he sensed I was watching him. His head snapped to attention when he saw me standing nearby. He froze for a second and then he made a quick decision. He ran to his dad. He wrapped his arms around his dad's legs knowing he was safe.
Like that father God is our safety. We can run to Him when we sense danger. We can depend on God when we are in trouble. If you have a problem run to Him and wrap your arms around Him. He is our Saviour and will offer the protection of His loving arms.
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FOR GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD

Sunday, July 10, 2011

LIFE'S COMPARTMENTS



My wife and I went grocery shopping. I really don't like to grocery shop but it wasn't all bad. I did get a box of my favorite cookies. We finally made it home and carried in all the bags. Then I helped put everything away. The first container was a box of salt. I opened the cabinet doors and there was three shelves of condiments. I saw two or three sets of salt shakers all neatly placed on the shelf together with the pepper shakers. I put the salt near an almost empty box of salt. I noticed all the other containers neatly placed together on the shelf with all the labels facing forward. There was onion flakes, celery flakes, red pepper flakes all together. Then there were the bottles of liquids. Vanilla flavoring, lemon flavoring and some other bottles all filled with different kinds of flavoring. Everything was in the right place.
I thought about our life. Most familes have a husband, a wife and two children. One boy and a girl.  families are very important. They are in place in one compartment. Then there is the work place. Maybe a nice office job. A desk, a telephone and a secretary would be great. Everything at the work place is just right, in it's compartment. Then there is the Church. You probably belong to a Men's Sunday School class. The rest of the family has their own class.  The children in their class and the wife in a ladies class. Then all the family sits together in the worship service. Church has it's own compartment. Your whole life fits into compartments. You need to know how to act and what to say as you sit in each compartment.
We need to make sure God is in each compartment of our life. God must have a part in our family. God must have a part in our work place. God must have a part in our Church life. All our thoughts and actions must show we live for Him. Check your life's compartments. Do you include Jesus Christ in every part of your life?
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FOR GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD

Sunday, July 3, 2011

COST AND VALUE



It has been said that fools know the cost of everything but they do not know the value of anything. What if you owned a gold mine? You would be rich. You could buy anything you ever wanted. A new car, a new house, pay off your bills, take a trip around the world in your own private jet. You could have it all. What if you won the lottery? You had the winning ticket. You just won 150 million dollars. What would you do with the money? No more worries. No more bills. You could quit your job. Can you imagine? Your pockets would be stuffed with money. People would be falling at your feet. All of them would do anything to gain your favor. That really would be great. There are other valuable things. What if you were hungry? What if you were homeless? A good meal would end your hunger. A roof over your head would keep out the cold. The cost of things and the value of things are very different. Still there is a more precious commodity.
God tells us that wisdom is the most precious thing you can own. Wisdom is more important than all the wealth of the world. People can steal your money but they can steal your wisdom. It can only be lost if you do not heed it's advice. James Chapter 1 Verse 5 - If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, it will be given to you. The things we seek depends on the things we value. The things we value most are the things we spend the most time trying to obtain. Do not spend your time seeking only material things. Forget things that pass away like the sands of time. Spend your time seeking God. He is our eternal Saviour.
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FOR GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

LOVE ONE ANOTHER



Most of us start our day about the same. We get up by the alarm clock. We yawn and stretch trying to wake up. Then we hit the bathroom. A shave and a shower and it's time for breakfast. If you shaved you're probably a man. The wife is working on breakfast. She pours you a cup of coffee. She has your favorite breakfast - Pancakes. There is some bacon on the side. Why does she do this for you She wants to please you. You are important to her. You take a sip and give her a peck on the cheek. She's your wife, your one true love. After a good hot breakfast you head out to work. You walk into the office and tell everyone good morning. You have a smile on your face. You want to please everyone and make them like you. You greet your boss with a smile. You ask him how he feels today. You tell him he is looking great. You need to please him. I think we all want people to like us. We try to please them.
As a Christian we live to please God. The world around us tries to pull us away from Him. There are many ways to please God. We can show our love for our fellow man. We can help someone along the way. There are people going to bed hungry every night. We can help them buy food. There are people in nursing homes who need a visit. There are neighbors who haven't had a visitor in weeks. They would welcome a visit. Just someone to talk to. Someone who will listen. It is easy to please God. Be the Christian He wants you to be. Love others as He loves you.
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FOR GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD