Thursday, July 31, 2008

Is it only about Me? - July 31, 2008

Good morning! The weekend weather forecast is not exactly what I would like to see. I don't think that anyone likes to see triple digit temperatures, not even the desert folks. However, we will endure. I can only think of all the football practices that are starting up in the heat. Wow! No thank you to football at 102ยบ!

Is it only about me?

Today, I saw an advertisement on one of my usual news websites for an astrology reading. Now this didn't seem at first to be a problem. I would simply ignore it and let them have their free speech rights. However, that got me to thinking. What if that advertisement had been directed at one of my personal weaknesses? Somewhere out in the world is a believer struggling with temptations in the area of the occult or astrology. This advertisement on a news website could hit that person when or where he did not expect to see a temptation of that type. Often, each of us judges the appropriateness of an advertisement by how it affects only our own self. While we might protest an ad as inappropriate when it affects us, we are unmoved by one that does not hit a sensitive area of our own life. Perhaps today I gained a bit of understanding into those believers who are called to protest a new liquor store in a rundown neighborhood, or an adult pornography shop in a family suburb. I have never felt that call myself, but you may have and I hope that you will gain some encouragement from my gaining a bit of wisdom in this area. I can only imagine how an alcoholic might feel if opening her favorite tech magazine to find advertisements for liquor scattered throughout the pages. Some types of expression are inappropriate in some settings, and we are right to protest such decisions. How else will editors, producers, and politicians know that someone does mind placing beer ads outside a high school or a casino billboard by the Gambler's Anonymous meeting hall? Yes, we don't have to sit back and let it happen. If you feel the call to protest, do so in prayer and love for others.

Please do not sit out the next election. I have heard one famous Christian leader promise to do just that, and I would have to disagree with that form of protest. There are more candidates than just the two major party nominees. A dark horse candidate winning a majority of the popular vote would send a message too!

May God bless us on these hot days to come!


Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Our Own Wisdom - July 30, 2008

Good Wednesday morning! The days seem to be stuck in a pattern of hot, but that is what mid-summer usually is around these parts. Two verses this morning caught my attention, Proverbs 3:5 and 3:7

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.

Don't be impressed with your own wisdom. Instead, fear the Lord and turn your back on evil.

Both proverbs tell us not to depend on or be impressed with our own wisdom. We have all seen intellectuals who are quite impressed with their own wisdom. We also observe that while those people do know a lot in human terms, they can also be a real test of our patience. Jesus often spoke against the wisdom of the world. We see that wisdom today manifested in humanist and atheist points of view. So many people want to take God out of places where we as believers would like our Lord to be. The classroom, government, and even sporting events are places that God is needed and wanted.

The other sides of those two proverbs could form a nice proverb as well: Trust in the Lord with all your heart; fear the Lord and turn you back on evil. Not only are we to not be prideful of our own wisdom, but we are to trust in the Lord completely, turning away from evil.

Cling tightly to the joy found only in Jesus on this fine day.


Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Seek Wisdom in the Word - July 29, 2008

Good morning and good day! I hope that you enjoyed a wonderful day yesterday and an even better one today.

Proverbs 2:3-5 tells us to: "Cry out for insight and ask for understanding. Seek for them as you would for hidden treasure. Then you will understand what it means to fear the Lord, and you will gain knowledge of God." Jesus also reminded us that he who seeks, finds. When it comes to wisdom, we cannot be passive in our search. Gaining or growing in wisdom is one of those "do" things that we find in our Christian life. We must seek wisdom in order to gain understanding. It is interesting that the world exhorts us to seek knowledge, but the Bible says to seek wisdom first and then we will gain understanding and knowledge of God. How do I know this? From reading on in Proverbs of course! "For the Lord grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding." (2:6) By seeking wisdom in the Lord, we find it in His holy Word, the Bible. However, that is not to say that it will be easy! That is why we are encouraged to read in the Word every day. Seek treasure in the Word of God!

I pray that we will grow in wisdom with each passing day.


Monday, July 28, 2008

The Beginning of Wisdom - July 28, 2008

Good Monday morning! We are blessed with another great day of work in the Lord! This morning while walking in the brown fields of town, I asked the Lord what to write about this morning. He responded with 'wisdom'. Reading in Proverbs, at least at the very beginning, a section is headed with 'wisdom for young people'. However, in reading the verse it also is directed to the simple. Now, I don't know how you feel about your quantity of wisdom, but I often feel quite simple. In other words I think that all of Proverbs is directed toward me. Yesterday Pastor Rogers equated discipleship with discipline. We are to be disciplined in our lives and wisdom gives us, the simple, guidance in how to achieve that discipline. I have not always been disciplined in many things that I do. This is not to take away spontaneous acts and have no fun, something the world sees in Christ because they do not believe. I disagree with those who try to schedule every moment of their lives, but on the other hand we should not go through our lives with no plans or schedules at all. This is something that is between each of us and God. The best part of the beginning verses of Proverbs is one that all of us have heard before: Fear of the Lord is the beginning of all knowledge. Your Bible version may state it slightly different, but we all come to the same point if we want to learn; respect the Lord and you will gain knowledge.

Hallelujah for the day!


Sunday, July 27, 2008

What am I Worth? - July 27, 2008

Good Sunday morning! The day looks to be quite hot with a bit of muggy thrown in for good measure. Today I wondered what my worth is based upon. Am I more worthy if I get promoted at work? If that were true getting laid off would make me worthless until I could find another job. Am I worth more due to giving to good causes? Again, if that were true then I am only saved by my ability to give, and if unable to give due to some financial hardship or disaster I would be worthless until I could give once more. Am I made worth more by the amount and variety of my possessions? No, we know very well from those who "lost everything" in floods and other disasters that material possessions can be gone overnight. The Olympics will soon begin, would winning a gold medal make me "golden"? Hardly, and neither would a multimillion dollar sports contract.

We know that our worth is based upon Jesus, the solid foundation of our faith. Our good works in Jesus are not subject to the tides of the economy or the changes of this world. We know our worth comes from Jesus, but sometimes we are tempted into forgetting that. We have a tendency to look at our finances, our love life, our family, job, friends, lack of fame, and many other very earthly things in order to judge our own worth. Today, let us remember and state aloud that our worth comes from Jesus. Remember that the Creator of all the universe loves you without reservation. Repeat it to yourself often, "God loves me!"

Praise God for His great love, hallelujah!


Saturday, July 26, 2008

Left Behind...again! - July 26, 2008

Good Saturday morning! Today is the start of the big sidewalk sale event in Sidney and especially at Cabela's. As you know, I tend to stay out of the way for this event as thousands of people stream into Sidney for the weekend. I did make a trip to Safeway this morning to get some more of those somewhat more expensive groceries. Last night we enjoyed at least 4 waves of thunderstorms in the area, and the last one was quite the finish. Of course, the morning dawns clear and innocent with only a few clouds hanging about. The warm days of mid-summer have arrived and in truth we cannot complain about this July, it has been mild compared to the last several. I pray that August is mild as well. Enough chit-chat, time to get into the Word!

I started the Left Behind series and prequels once more a few nights ago. I had promised myself another run through those books after graduation and the time has come to pay up on that promise. I am struck once again by how similar the experiences of those unsaved and saved in the series are to my own. I suspect there are similarities in yours as well. We like to think that we are original in our problems and trials, but in truth we often face the same arguments and temptations that everyone else has. This is quite likely as there is only one enemy and one tempter. The lusts of the flesh have not changed in millennia, and the fallen angel who tempts the righteous is still the same one who tempted Paul, Peter, and John in the first century. Of course Mr Lahaye and Jenkins can right with some authority on what it takes to be saved, to overcome unbelief in yourself and others, and to let Jesus into your heart; they went through those same things in their own life. Do you read books and find yourself cheering on the characters? In this series I do, because the Holy Spirit wants everyone to be saved, even fictional characters. Yes, a good read and one I recommend to you. The books are still widely available in libraries and bookstores; be sure to read whenever you have a chance and this is a good series of books to start with.

God bless you all,


Thursday, July 24, 2008

Hoping or Wishing? - July 24, 2008

A beautiful morning to you! We have one of those partly cloudy mornings that make a sunrise so fascinating to watch. Another cat has come around this morning, making noise with Samantha outside. Do I hope they will get along and be quiet? No, that is a wish of mine. Today I thought about the difference between wishing and hoping. Cats are solitary predators, and as such they mark and defend their hunting territory. Female cats tend to make a lot of noise. I don't really expect two cats to get along with each other, but I wish they would. Hoping, on the other hand, is defined as a confident expectation. If you have filled out the paperwork and paid money, you might hope to close on a new house this month. That is a confident expectation. There is another type of hope, or confident expectation, the hope of things that we did not arrange for monetarily. We have a confident expectation that Jesus will return soon. This is not based on wishing, but on evidence and in God's promise. The evidence comes from what is often called the signs of the times. Wars and rumors of war, earthquakes in diverse places, people rushing about, and the many other signs that we were told to watch for have arrived in their numbers. God promised us that when all appeared to be getting dark that it would be time to look up for our salvation would draw near. We have a confident expectation of Jesus' return. Some days I wish for Jesus' return, but that is usually due yet another trial or temptation coming my way. We know that the trials will come, but we also know that Jesus will return, and that is no wish.

Enjoy our hope in Jesus today!


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Encourage? - July 23, 2008

Good morning at mid-week; I am up before the dawn to watch the sunrise. I didn't intend to do that last night when going to bed; it just kind of worked out that way this morning. Some mornings I wake up feeling ready to go... at 2:00am. Perhaps it is the eager anticipation of writing the devotional that does it! This morning in my Bible reading, I came upon a checklist for encourage-ers. Some of the items were those that I struggle with daily. How am I to encourage you when having troubles of my own? Other items were those that all of us must overcome throughout our lifetimes. Many sounded more like challenges in our Christian life than words of encouragement. However, the last item clinched the whole deal. God will strengthen us. That's right, in all of the challenges of this life of growing ever closer to Jesus, our Lord and perfect ideal, God himself sends us the strength and authority to overcome the world. The world in this case also includes the desires of the flesh that can so hinder us in our daily Christian growth. Like the sunrise that I am glancing at from time to time, the strength that God grants us may start slowly, even seeming to be beneath our perception at first. We might even ask, "Are you there, Lord?" The Lord is indeed there and here in our hearts, we have but to wait and watch as the strength to resist grows within us. Like the sunrise, the fullness of the Lord's strength in our lives will surely come, powerful and unstoppable. Trust daily in the Lord to bear us up in the times of difficulty.

Praise the name of Jesus Christ!


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I Want! - July 22, 2008

Good morning! We have a rather sticky morning out here. Combine a warm day with some clouds that arrived in the evening and stayed overnight, and we have a bit of what you eastern and southern folks face most every day. What is the subject of today? Have you ever looked at something you wanted to buy, known that you couldn't afford it, and then started scheming up ways to buy it anyway? Guilty! The Bible calls that covetousness and speaks rather strongly against it; actually, God says "Don't do it" or as the King James version likes to say, "Thou shalt not...". In this world of materialism, we are exhorted to buy, buy, and buy some more. However, we need to become, as Paul told us, "wily as serpents." This means that we need to learn not only how to handle money well and responsibly, but also how to be patient in the things we want. There are many good reasons for wanting something, many of us will have been looking at more fuel-efficient vehicles these days for example, but we must be patient when the money isn't there and trust in the Lord to provide what we need. I don't know about you, but my "I wants" far outstrip my actual needs, and that is probably something that has been with us since the curse first fell upon Adam and Eve. I have noticed that where I have been patient the wanting often disappears in time. It is easy to want, harder to afford, and better to trust in Jesus.

Praise the Lord for the new day in Christ!


Monday, July 21, 2008

Looking Inside - July 21, 2008

Good Monday morning, it's time for another week of wonderful work in Jesus! Today I am thinking of some healthy introspection. Examining one's thinking is something we do often in our Christian life. I wondered today what Jesus might say to me in the same manner as he sent messages to the seven churches in the Revelation. The part that stung the most was the part that starts out with, "but I have this against you...". The churches receiving messages of that type probably felt the sting as well. However, we are reminded strongly that we are reproved because God loves us and wants the best for us. A healthy self-examination is not a license to abuse yourself or take pot shots at your own mind. Remember first that God loves you so much that He sent His Son to die in your place. Each of us is a pearl of great price, not a charred lump of clay to be cast aside. Think of what you would do with a valuable object found in a mud puddle. You would carefully take it and do your best to clean it up. Then you would try to restore the valuable object to its rightful owner. In this same way, Jesus found us in the mud, is in the process of cleansing us, and will soon restore us to our rightful owner, the Lord God himself. The process may be painful at times; the sting of self-examination may not be comfortable, but it is necessary to our Christian health. Remember always that God loves you and that He loved you even before any cleansing began in your life. What we find in our self-examination may not be pretty, but identifying the problem is the first step in turning it over to the Holy Spirit!

God loves you and so do I!


Sunday, July 20, 2008

Gratitude Daily - July 20, 2008

Good Sunday morning! A rare foggy day in July out here, not sure what the cause of that might be. Do we tend to attach more significance to some events than is actually present? Perhaps there is no cause to a foggy day other than the atmospheric conditions that produced it. It seems that in this life we have an inbuilt tendency to place significance on random events and miss the hand of God in smaller things. Hurricanes can cause widespread destruction, and we think that is surely some punishment from God, while a thunderstorm doesn't produce a tornado and we are not impressed enough to thank Him. We seem to miss so much that we should be thankful for in our lives. However, before I go jumping on all of us too much, let us not forget the one thing that we have all been thankful for on a daily basis... the gift of eternal life by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. We might not remember to specifically state it each day, but I think in our hearts we rejoice daily in Jesus. No superstition needed in the day, only a knowledge of our gratitude toward the one who saved us from the curse of sin and death.

Praise the name of our Lord Jesus!


Saturday, July 19, 2008

Enduring Hope - July 19, 2008

Good Saturday morning! When the weather goes through a hot or cold spell, don't we often look forward to relief? Our taste in temperatures seems to fit a rather narrow band, yet we ever look forward to a change. Today, let us think about a change for the better in, well, everything. In the Bible, we see that one day there will be a new heaven and a new earth; the old ones will be rolled up and thrown away. Who will arrive before that time though? Yes, the one in whom we place our enduring hope, Jesus. In this world we see much imperfection, the result of the curse brought upon the entire universe by Adam's disobedience. Our hope is in Jesus because He restored that hope to us through His death and resurrection. The champions of faith in the Old Testament looked forward to Messiah, Jesus, and all after Jesus have looked forward to His second coming. That enduring hope has sustained those who will believe through unimaginable hardships in their lives. We have this one hope, Jesus. Remind yourself today that your hope is not in the things of this earth, but in the mighty and everlasting Son of the Living God.

Rejoice! Jesus is coming soon!


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

A Promise of Light and Hope - July 16, 2008

Good morning in Christ! Messages of love are coming our way today; I can feel it in the air. I am staring at yet another credit card advertisement. This one says that I can: "earn spending money with every purchase." That would seem to be a contradiction at best and perhaps even an outright lie. That is the world though, how it does like to twist the truth into something sly. Compare the world's advertising with something that Jesus told us - believe in me and you will be saved. A man who had spent his life in sin, so much that he was condemned by the Roman authorities to die, asked Jesus to remember him when Jesus came into his kingdom. Jesus assured that man that he would be with Jesus in paradise on that day. As we know from the Bible, later that day the legs of the two men were broken to speed their deaths. That day, the one who believed entered paradise to be with Jesus, just as promised. We live in a promise, a promise of light and hope. Live in the love of Jesus today; rest in His great promise to us.

Jesus said that He would never leave us, and when the Son of God says "never", that is a very long time indeed.


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Joy in the Lord - July 15, 2008

Good morning little children of Christ! It is a wonderful thing to write this from home again. I'm happy, my employer prefers it, and the word still goes out to you! How things do work together for good for those who believe in the Lord Jesus. May God bring you grace and peace on this fine summer day.

Today is one step closer to Jesus. How do I know that? On the calendar each passing day means that I am closer to the physical death that each of us will experience if Jesus does not return in our lifetime. That thought is comforting to those who believe, but a terror to those who do not believe. In Christ, we also know that the Holy Spirit will teach, train, comfort, and protect us each day and bring each of us closer to Jesus through the trials and blessings of that day. Even in my own reading, writing, talking, and learning, I will come closer to Jesus because of my own faith and confidence in our Lord. Everything works together to bring us closer to Jesus with each passing day! There are none so blind as those who cannot see, and there are none so blessed as are those of us who see Jesus in everything! Praise God for this new day, and praise His Son Jesus Christ for the glory of God in us. As the song goes: let Heaven and Nature sing, on this great day in Christ Jesus!

Enjoy the day in Christ,


Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Joy and Rejoicing - July 9, 2008

Good morning! The sky is clear, probably going to be a warm one today. The wheat harvest should be starting up around here at any time. The farmers are expecting a good crop and with the high grain prices they should do well this year. Isn't it great when someone around you does well in this world? We can rejoice with them in their success. In Philippians, Paul writes extensively about joy and rejoicing. We should read about joy in the Bible often, for we are not called to grief and sadness, though we do share them from time to time, but to joy in the Lord Jesus. Christians are not fools who grin at a funeral. We share the sadness of a loved one's passing, but we also remember the joy that loved one will feel when they go to be with Jesus. We too hope to be with Jesus soon. Sometimes we find there is no hope in this world at all, and that only Jesus can save us from some situation. We find joy in that too, for our Lord is sovereign and in His love we will rejoice in eternity! Joy and rejoicing may seem far away from us at times. However, we will find unexpected joy in Jesus in the times we might least expect it. Rejoice in the Lord always, again I will say rejoice! (Philippians 4:4)

God bless you on this fine day!


Tuesday, July 08, 2008

A Day in the Life - July 8, 2008

Good Tuesday morning. It is a back to work day for me, praise the Lord for the privilege of working for Him. Do you get up and remind yourself that you are God's child? A child of the king and of the Most High God? If not, you certainly should. However, in saying these things to myself, I often wonder if I am just mouthing phrases by rote. I do believe that I am missing the point when wondering in that way. Some mornings I may not feel like a child of the king; the blessings may seem far away on a particular day. Once more I must remind each of us, and myself, that being a child of God is not a feeling. We must continue to remind ourselves of the great value placed upon our lives by the sacrifice of Jesus. More precious than all the wealth in this world is the life of a person who believes in Jesus! Feelings come and feelings go, but the love of Jesus is eternal. Lift up your heads and hearts in joy on this day. Live in the peace of Jesus and remember the grace that has bought you.

At times our victories in this life may seem small. We might take a walk, but it doesn't measure up to the standards set by the fitness gurus. We might get out to do some other exercise, but are only able to spend a few minutes at it before going somewhere else. A bit of illness may prevent us from doing well on a test, but we did take the test. Do your victories seem small today? Remember then that we are not the ones leading the charge. In Jesus there is victory, no matter how small it may seem to us. Perhaps your walk didn't last as long as someone else says that it should, but it was getting out and walking, and that is much better than not walking. You may have earned a "B" on the test, but that is better than not showing up for the test at all. We live for Christ; Christ lived and died, and lives again for us! Does the walk or the test really matter so much in the big picture? Our victories may seem small at times, but our failures are smaller still. Remember the love of Jesus and walk in Him! We have so much to live for in the grace and peace of Jesus.

What a wonderful day in Christ Jesus!


Saturday, July 05, 2008

Everlasting Love - July 5, 2008

Good morning. As has been the norm for some years now, I am getting up slowly and sleepily on the day following Independence Day. The fireworks went late last night, but we survived another July 4th celebration. Good morning and good day to you!

A little girl character in a show I watched this morning asked, "What is it that makes it so that some people can become heroes and others cannot?" That question struck me as one worth pondering. Is it courage? The world might think so, but what then is the difference between a person incapable of feeling fear and one who overcomes the fear? Is the fortunate fool the same as one who carefully plans, adapts, and follows training to overcome great odds in spite of their own fear? Is it the difference between failure and success? The world defines a hero in one way, Christ in another. In the eyes of the world our Savior was a complete failure. Jesus died a criminal's death and then some poor fools made up a tale of resurrection. However, for those who will believe, the world's victory was a lie. Jesus died in victory, laying down his life for those who could not save themselves. On the third day, our Lord rose again overcoming death and the grave for all time. Faith makes our Lord a hero; unbelief can view him as a failure. We have but to choose.

In Christ you have already made the choice to live with Him in your heart. In the end, we will all be welcomed home as heroes. It does not matter what the world thinks of our accomplishments, Jesus has already accomplished what needs to be done. All of our good deeds from here on out to the end of our lives are for the glory of God the Father. We need not fear how the world perceives what we do. In Christ all is forgiven and we live only for Him! Praise God for the new day and the everlasting love of Jesus the Christ!

God bless you all on this fine weekend!


Friday, July 04, 2008

Joyous Independence Day! - 2008

Joyous Independence Day! Yes, my flag is out and I have been working on my yard... er, wait; what happened with that last one? Sometimes a cool morning is just too good to pass up, Independence Day or not. My yard is beginning to resemble a desert habitat, and so I thought now would be a good time to get the sprinklers going for the summer. My neighbors may think that a month ago was a good time to start, but look how much water they used! Last night I could not help but marvel at the differences in people around here. We had the high schoolers driving during the fireworks show, too cool to be seen staring at fireworks. We had the majority of folks, including me, outside watching from cars and camp chairs, and then we had the real zealots. The last group were those who not only watched the fireworks show, but set off many of their own during and after the show. Some of those fireworks zealots kept it up until 2330 or thereabouts. We had a great night for fireworks too; a cool breeze blowing the smoke away, cool enough for a jacket to keep the mosquitoes at bay, and clear skies for good viewing. Not a bad night, though the cats may not agree with my assessment. However, we have one more night of fireworks to go. Praise the Lord that I don't have to work tomorrow!

I came upon one of those inconsistencies in the Bible that the world so likes to point out. However, I am heartened by my reaction to it. As that little yapping voice gleefully pointed out the inconsistency, you know that little voice that would have us fall away from the Word, it came to me that there was no inconsistency for those who will believe. Even using a tool the world likes, logic, I could see that this apparent inconsistency was not there. God will make the world's wisdom foolish. We might say that God will show the worldly intellectuals to be wrong. However, we should never think that God cannot or will not meet those intellectuals on their own ground and show them the correct way, even though they may choose to not believe. Jesus did it to the Pharisees and Sadducees, Paul debated the Greek intellectuals, and Stephen explained things to the Jewish teachers of the Law. If a person believes in human intelligence, God will use that to shine a light into their lives. If God has given you intellectual gifts, use them for His glory!

Have a wonderful holiday weekend in Christ Jesus!


Thursday, July 03, 2008

Lift Up One Another - July 3, 2008

Good morning! Tomorrow we celebrate our Independence Day. Many people have been celebrating fireworks; I hope that somewhere within that celebration they have remembered what this time is all about. If I recall correctly, a few folks will gather tomorrow morning and try once more to launch an anvil into space with explosives. I am not sure how or why this tradition started, but we get to hear it each year. Yes, the boy's toys just get bigger as they grow older... and I'm as guilty as the rest of 'em!

Words of hope and faith today! One of our most important duties as followers of the Way, Jesus Christ, is to lift up one another. Pastor Rogers mentions this today also and this seems like a good subject to address. Most of us will begin a long weekend today, and I am glad to see that happen. We all work so much that a break is good for our health and well being. I hope that you will take a break from work and enjoy some play this weekend. Glorify God with joyous play. Worries pile upon us and we need to take the time to rest in Jesus. Rest, relax, and enjoy some time off from work!

Relax in the peace of God this day,


Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Free Gift? - July 2, 2008

Good morning, the wind is up and the temperature will soon be down. I am not much of a weatherman as you can tell from that last statement. Oh, well. There are more important things to write about. This morning I read an advertisement received in the mail proclaiming that I had won a free gift. I couldn't help but ask the cat that if the gift was truly free, why did I have to "win" it? Comparing that to the free gift of salvation, Paul reminds us in Philippians that we have not yet won the prize. We live in the joy of Christ, bought with His blood, and given to us freely by the grace of God. We do not have to win some imaginary contest to have the free gift of eternal life. Heaven will be our prize, but we do not receive that until the end of the race. The free gift we receive immediately, and there are no strings attached to our salvation. I suspect that if I were to call the toll-free number to receive my "free" gift, there would be a certain obligation to at least listen to their sales pitch. "At the end of this recording, we'll tell you how to get your free gift." or something to that effect. The world does make it easy to list the advantages of believing in Christ. However, to those who do not yet believe, the lies of the devil hide those same advantages from their eyes. There are no gimmicks in Jesus, believe it and receive it this very morning!

Have a wonderful day, and to those of you taking off early for Independence Day, have a great weekend!


Tuesday, July 01, 2008

The Path Lies Ahead, not Behind - July 1, 2008

Good Tuesday morning! Wow, where did Monday go? A busy day can go by very quickly. Today marks the start of the latter half of 2008...yes, already. Today let us decide to go back; we'll count back to January 1, 2008. No, we cannot really do that. We can count the days on the calendar however we wish, but that will not change the date of Jesus' arrival. In our lives we could choose to reach 40 or 50 years of age and start counting back toward 0. However, we know that will not change our physical age no matter how big are the birthday parties we hold. In our lives we sometimes reach a point where we start to lean backward. We might yearn for things that we owned back in the day, or we might want to make contact with people who have since passed out of our lives. This is not to speak against reunions, quite the contrary! There is nothing better than a class reunion to make one realize just how far you have come in life, and how far apart you have grown from your classmates. In this life we sometimes value that which we have already held or seen. It can be comforting to read a book over again; we already know the ending and expect no surprises. Jesus calls us to live a new life, and like reading a new book that life may, and probably will, be full of surprises. You or I may find that trying to buy something we once owned will not bring back the same feelings from that prior time in our lives. You and I have been changed in Christ Jesus, we do not need those old things! Our new path is with and following Jesus; the road lies ahead and not behind. Follow the new path and leave behind the things of the past.

Let the glory of the Lord shine on us today!