12/30/08

Stupid is as Stupid does

Pretty stupid sign, right? As Forrest Gump would say: “Stupid is as Stupid does”. I wonder who authorized such a sign to be put up in the first place and why? Bureaucracy, it seems, defies reason and reasonableness! Stupidity can be found everywhere, not just in road signs; consider Ahaziah, king of Israel:

2Ki 1:1 Moab rebelled against Israel after the death of Ahab.
2Ki 1:2 Ahaziah fell down through the lattice in his upper chamber that was in Samaria, and was sick: and he sent messengers, and said to them, Go, inquire of Baal Zebub, the god of Ekron, whether I shall recover of this sickness.
2Ki 1:3 But the angel of Yahweh said to Elijah the Tishbite, Arise, go up to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria, and tell them, Is it because there is no God in Israel, that you go to inquire of Baal Zebub, the god of Ekron?
2Ki 1:4 Now therefore thus says Yahweh, You shall not come down from the bed where you have gone up, but shall surely die. Elijah departed.
2Ki 1:5 The messengers returned to him, and he said to them, Why is it that you have returned?
2Ki 1:6 They said to him, There came up a man to meet us, and said to us, Go, turn again to the king who sent you, and tell him, Thus says Yahweh, Is it because there is no God in Israel, that you send to inquire of Baal Zebub, the god of Ekron? therefore you shall not come down from the bed where you are gone up, but shall surely die.
2Ki 1:7 He said to them, What kind of man was he who came up to meet you, and told you these words?
2Ki 1:8 They answered him, He was a hairy man, and girt with a belt of leather about his waist. He said, It is Elijah the Tishbite.
2Ki 1:9 Then the king sent to him a captain of fifty with his fifty. He went up to him: and behold, he was sitting on the top of the hill. He spoke to him, man of God, the king has said, Come down.
2Ki 1:10 Elijah answered to the captain of fifty, If I be a man of God, let fire come down from the sky, and consume you and your fifty. Fire came down from the sky, and consumed him and his fifty.
2Ki 1:11 Again he sent to him another captain of fifty and his fifty. He answered him, man of God, thus has the king said, Come down quickly.
2Ki 1:12 Elijah answered them, If I be a man of God, let fire come down from the sky, and consume you and your fifty. The fire of God came down from the sky, and consumed him and his fifty.
2Ki 1:13 Again he sent the captain of a third fifty with his fifty. The third captain of fifty went up, and came and fell on his knees before Elijah, and begged him, and said to him, man of God, please let my life, and the life of these fifty your servants, be precious in your sight.
2Ki 1:14 Behold, fire came down from the sky, and consumed the two former captains of fifty with their fifties; but now let my life be precious in your sight.
2Ki 1:15 The angel of Yahweh said to Elijah, Go down with him: don't be afraid of him. He arose, and went down with him to the king.
2Ki 1:16 He said to him, Thus says Yahweh, Because you have sent messengers to inquire of Baal Zebub, the god of Ekron, is it because there is no God in Israel to inquire of his word? therefore you shall not come down from the bed where you have gone up, but shall surely die.
2Ki 1:17 So he died according to the word of Yahweh which Elijah had spoken. Jehoram began to reign in his place in the second year of Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat king of Judah; because he had no son.


The World English Bible


Ahaziah should have learned the lesson Yahweh taught Israel in 1 Kings 18. There was only one true God in Israel and HE answers by fire! Yet Ahaziah kept sending men to Elijah and they were repeatedly being killed by fire? I think the saying “don’t confuse me with the facts; I have my mind made up” applies to Ahaziah. The next time God demonstrates something to you, it might be a very good thing to learn AND apply it. By the way, however stupid the road sign is… it IS RIGHT!

Freedom

Notice the sign above the gate of the concentration camp, it means... work makes free. The sign above the entrance is a lie; there was no freedom here, only death. What is freedom, anyway? Is it the right to do anything you want at anytime? That can't be right, because you could hurt someone else in the process. What if the government allowed you to do something that you knew was morally wrong, but was allowed by current law, would you do it? True freedom is not governed by externals or legislation, but rather by obedience to the highest standard possible and that of course would be God's law. Consider the following Scripture and then ask yourself what you would do:

Act 5:12 And by the hands of the apostles were many signs and wonders wrought among the people; (and they were all with one accord in Solomon's porch.
Act 5:13 And of the rest durst no man join himself to them: but the people magnified them.
Act 5:14 And believers were the more added to the Lord, multitudes both of men and women.)
Act 5:15 So that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them.
Act 5:16 There came also a multitude out of the cities around to Jerusalem, bringing sick persons, and them who were afflicted with unclean spirits: and they were healed every one.
Act 5:17 Then the high priest rose up, and all they that were with him; (which is the sect of the Sadducees) and were filled with indignation,
Act 5:18 And laid their hands on the apostles, and put them in the common prison.
Act 5:19 But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison-doors, and brought them forth, and said,
Act 5:20 Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life.
Act 5:21 And when they heard that, they entered into the temple early in the morning, and taught. But the high priest came, and they that were with him, and called the council together, and all the senate of the children of Israel, and sent to the prison to have them brought.
Act 5:22 But when the officers came, and found them not in the prison, they returned, and told,
Act 5:23 Saying, The prison truly we found shut with all safety, and the keepers standing without before the doors: but when we had opened, we found no man within.
Act 5:24 Now when the high priest, and the captain of the temple, and the chief priests heard these things, they doubted of them to what this would grow.
Act 5:25 Then came one and told them, saying, Behold, the men whom ye put in prison are standing in the temple, and teaching the people.
Act 5:26 Then went the captain with the officers, and brought them without violence: for they feared the people, lest they should have been stoned.
Act 5:27 And when they had brought them, they set them before the council: and the high priest asked them,
Act 5:28 Saying, Did we not strictly command you, that ye should not teach in this name? and behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man's blood upon us.
Act 5:29 Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.
Act 5:30 The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree:
Act 5:31 Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Savior, to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.
Act 5:32 And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Spirit, whom God hath given to them that obey him.
The Webster Bible
God had given the apostles very special abilities and marching orders to go forth and use those abilities. They could not stop no matter what the opposition, but I wonder if I could be as brave as they were? Like it or not, there seems to be a progression towards a one government world. Coupled with rising opposition to religious freedom, we may be headed towards moments in our own lives that resemble that of the apostles. Remember, if the son makes you free, then you are free indeed. Do what is right; don't look back, obey God and be truly free!

12/29/08

Dead End

Signs, they say all sorts of things; some good and others not. Somehow our society has softened a lot of things in life. We don't have graveyards, we have cemeteries. We don't have to use the toilet, instead we need to go to the little boys room. There are no more stupid kids, we have intellectually challenged youth. Why, what is so wrong with calling something exactly what it is, without all the soft soap? Our society doesn't want to offend anyone because it might hurt their feelings. Well, there are times when the unvarnished truth must be told, for example who would want to go to a physician who was afraid to tell his patient about an incurable disease like cancer? The truth may hurt, but it is still the truth. One of the things I like about Jesus is that when the truth was necessary, he just said it. Consider this passage:

Mat 15:1 Then the scribes and Pharisees who were from Jerusalem came to Jesus, saying,
Mat 15:2 Why do your disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat bread.
Mat 15:3 But He answered and said to them, Why do you also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?
Mat 15:4 For God commanded, saying, "Honor your father and mother"; and, "He who speaks evil of father or mother, let him die by death."
Mat 15:5 But you say, Whoever says to his father or mother, Whatever you would gain from me, It is a gift to God;
Mat 15:6 and in no way he honors his father or his mother. And you voided the commandment of God by your tradition.
Mat 15:7 Hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy of you, saying,
Mat 15:8 "This people draws near to Me with their mouth, and honors Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me.
Mat 15:9 But in vain they worship Me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men."
Mat 15:10 And He called the crowd and said to them, Hear and understand.
Mat 15:11 Not that which goes into the mouth defiles a man; but that which comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man.
Mat 15:12 Then His disciples came and said to Him, Do You know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this saying?
Mat 15:13 But He answered and said, Every plant which My heavenly Father has not planted shall be rooted up.
Mat 15:14 Let them alone. They are blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.
Modern King James Version
Politically correct is a path that leads straight to hell. When someone commits a grievous error, they need to be corrected, not coddled. When someone sins, they should be made aware of it. However, at the same time there is no need to be vindictive, just correct. So, the next time someone asks you where the cemetery is, just tell them the direction to the graveyard. Maybe they will think a little more about death and the afterlife and who knows, you just might be doing them a favor?

12/28/08

Talk is cheap

Remember “The wizard of OZ”? There was a song in the show called “follow the yellow brick road” which I can still sing (sort of). But what if God really did give us a literal “yellow brick road” to follow in our lives? What effect would it have on us? I think it would make into robots. So, what is the plan? Well, we have the examples of both ungodly and godly people from the Bible to follow. Saul was chosen by God to lead Israel but could not really do the job. First, the bad example:

1Sa 15:1 Samuel also said to Saul, the LORD sent me to anoint thee to be king over his people, over Israel: now therefore hearken thou to the voice of the words of the LORD.
1Sa 15:2 Thus saith the LORD of hosts, I remember that which Amalek did to Israel, how he laid wait for him in the way, when he came up from Egypt.
1Sa 15:3 Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.
1Sa 15:4 And Saul assembled the people, and numbered them in Telaim, two hundred thousand footmen, and ten thousand men of Judah.
1Sa 15:5 And Saul came to a city of Amalek, and laid wait in the valley.
1Sa 15:6 And Saul said to the Kenites, Go, depart, withdraw yourselves from among the Amalekites, lest I destroy you with them: for ye showed kindness to all the children of Israel when they came up from Egypt. So the Kenites departed from among the Amalekites.
1Sa 15:7 And Saul smote the Amalekites from Havilah, until thou comest to Shur, that is over against Egypt.
1Sa 15:8 And he took Agag the king of the Amalekites alive, and utterly destroyed all the people with the edge of the sword.
1Sa 15:9 But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs, and all that was good, and would not utterly destroy them: but every thing that was vile and refuse, that they destroyed utterly.
1Sa 15:10 Then came the word of the LORD to Samuel, saying,
1Sa 15:11 I repent that I have set up Saul to be king: for he is turned back from following me, and hath not performed my commandments. And it grieved Samuel; and he cried to the LORD all night.

And also….. (the good example, Jesus)

Mat 7:13 Enter ye in at the strait gate; for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there are who go in by it.
Mat 7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth to life, and few there are that find it.
Mat 7:15 Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
Mat 7:16 Ye shall know them by their fruits: Do men gather grapes from thorns, or figs from thistles:
Mat 7:17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
Mat 7:18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
Mat 7:19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
Mat 7:20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them,
Mat 7:21 Not every one that saith to me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father who is in heaven.


The Webster Bible


Saul knew the right thing to do, but did not do it. Some teach today that all that is required is just mentally assent to the concept that God is king and everything will be OK… hum… what about obedience? In fact, it is God's will that we adhere to a very specific pattern as outlined in Acts chapter 2. Talk is cheap, actions speak much, much louder than words; obey the will of God and head down the right road, bricks are optional!

12/27/08

Breakthrough

What's wrong with this plane? The answer is:nothing. It's just breaking through the sound barrier, that's all. Most of the time we just hear a sonic boom and realize this has happened, but here is a picture of it. We can see it, not just hear it. A lot of things in life are like this, we know they happen, but we don't normally see them. Start your car lately? You don't see the mechanics behind the car starting, but you know they are happening; your car starts. Faith is like this, you can't see it but you can see the results of a changed life. Jesus said:

Joh 3:1 There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews:
Joh 3:2 The same came to Jesus by night, and said to him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.
Joh 3:3 Jesus answered and said to him, Verily, verily, I say to thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
Joh 3:4 Nicodemus saith to him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born?
Joh 3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say to thee, Except a man be born of water, and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
Joh 3:6 That which is born of the flesh, is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit, is spirit.
Joh 3:7 Marvel not that I said to thee, Ye must be born again.
Joh 3:8 The wind bloweth where it will, and thou hearest the sound of it, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.
Joh 3:9 Nicodemus answered and said to him, How can these things be?
Joh 3:10 Jesus answered and said to him, Art thou a teacher of Israel, and knowest not these things?
Joh 3:11 Verily, verily, I say to thee, We speak what we know, and testify what we have seen; and ye receive not our testimony.
Joh 3:12 If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how will ye believe if I tell you heavenly things?
Joh 3:13 And no man hath ascended to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man who is in heaven.
Joh 3:14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
Joh 3:15 That whoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
Joh 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only-begotten Son, that whoever believeth in him, should not perish, but have everlasting life.
The Webster Bible
Nicodemus needed to make the breakthrough from thinking literally to spiritually! There are countless things in this world we do not understand, but we accept them as fact. Like Nicodemus, we need to realize that somethings are beyond our current understanding and breakthrough to spiritual acceptance. Then, boom, you are there: breakthrough!


12/26/08

Beauty or the beast

A good friend of mine drew this beautiful picture. I have never been artistic and am amazed how someone can do this, but God gives different gifts to different people. This lady is quite attractive, but I wonder what she will look like in 50 years? As we age, our face becomes a mirror of the life we have lived. Haven't you ever noticed that some people retain a certain charm and attractiveness while others become bitter and mean spirited as they enter their golden years. The last letter that the apostle Paul wrote gives some insight into aging. He writes:

2Ti 4:7 I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:
2Ti 4:8 Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me at that day: and not to me only, but to all them also that love his appearing.
2Ti 4:9 Do thy diligence to come shortly to me:
2Ti 4:10 For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and hath departed to Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus to Dalmatia.
2Ti 4:11 Luke only is with me. Take Mark, and bring him with thee: for he is profitable to me for the ministry.
2Ti 4:12 And Tychicus have I sent to Ephesus.
2Ti 4:13 The cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee, and the books, but especially the parchments.
2Ti 4:14 Alexander the copper-smith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according to his works:
2Ti 4:15 Of whom be thou aware also; for he hath greatly withstood our words.
2Ti 4:16 At my first answer no man stood with me, but all men forsook me: I pray God that it may not be laid to their charge.
2Ti 4:17 Notwithstanding, the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known, and that all the Gentiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion.
2Ti 4:18 And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me to his heavenly kingdom; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
The Webster Bible
If anyone had a hard life it was Paul. I have heard it said that he traveled over 100,000 miles on his missionary journeys and the way he himself talks about his exploits in the latter part of the book of 2 Corinthians its a wonder he ever became older. He should have been a bitter old man, but instead the love within him is very obvious. I wonder, what will our heart be like in 50 years, a beauty or the beast? I guess the answer can only be found written on our heart, but you will have to look past the wrinkles to find out.

12/25/08

Ha Ha!!

Some people love to bring others down; I think they live for it. I frankly do not understand such people! Perhaps its a way to exalt themselves by hoping someone else is having a worse day than they are. How do we deal with such people? Nehemiah encountered those who ridiculed what he planned to do. See his solution in the following verses:
Neh 4:1 But it came to pass that when Sanballat heard that we were building the wall, he was wroth, and took great indignation, and mocked the Jews.
Neh 4:2 And he spoke before his brethren, and the army of Samaria, and said, What do these feeble Jews? will they fortify themselves? will they sacrifice? will they make an end in a day? will they revive the stones out of the heaps of the rubbish which are burned?
Neh 4:3 Now Tobiah the Ammonite was by him, and he said, Even that which they build, if a fox should go up, he would even break down their stone wall.
Neh 4:4 Hear, O our God; for we are despised: and turn their reproach upon their own head, and give them for a prey in the land of captivity:
Neh 4:5 And cover not their iniquity, and let not their sin be blotted out from before thee: for they have provoked thee to anger before the builders.
Neh 4:6 So we built the wall; and all the wall was joined together to the half of it, for the people had a mind to work.
The Webster Bible
Simple isn't it; he worked and prayed. I think he had a great deal of trust as well, and the combination of prayer, trust and hard work is powerful indeed! Also note that Nehemiah named his adversaries and asked God to handle the situation. When faced with opposition, God is the best arbiter; rely on him and do not retaliate. It may be tempting to say "Ha Ha" back to your opponents, but ultimately it is far better to just hand the situation over to God; if HE puts someone down, HE really has the last laugh!

12/24/08

First things first


How do we measure worth? How is it that diamonds are worth more than say, popcorn? Is it just rarity or durability that is the overriding factor? What about intangible items such as a smile or love. Money is important, but try living without hope or love or companionship. What if no one in your life cared two cents about you? For all his great intellect, the apostle Paul really loved others, as can be seen by the following Bible passage:
Php 1:3 I thank my God whenever I remember you,
Php 1:4 always in every request of mine on behalf of you all making my requests with joy,
Php 1:5 for your partnership in furtherance of the Good News from the first day until now;
Php 1:6 being confident of this very thing, that he who began a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.
Php 1:7 It is even right for me to think this way on behalf of all of you, because I have you in my heart, because, both in my bonds and in the defense and confirmation of the Good News, you all are partakers with me of grace.
Php 1:8 For God is my witness, how I long after all of you in the tender mercies of Christ Jesus.
Php 1:9 This I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and all discernment;
Php 1:10 so that you may approve the things that are excellent; that you may be sincere and without offense to the day of Christ;
Php 1:11 being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.
The World English Bible
Don't worry about what life will give you; first give yourself over to others in love and a path of understanding will be provided by the God of the heavens.

12/22/08

Peek a boo

Recently a friend of mine has made me really aware of cats. I have known they existed for many years, but never really paid much attention to them. They are playful creatures as the two pictures shown above reveal. My friend talks about her cat as if it were human, but its hard for me to think about cats like that. Many years ago, a minister's wife was asked whether or not cats or dogs would be in heaven. Her response was the most insightful I have ever heard; "whatever it takes to make you happy will be there". A loving God would naturally give those who love him their deepest desires and fill their lives with joy! But what about today? What will God give to those who love him today? Jesus said:

Mat 5:3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Mat 5:4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
Mat 5:5 Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
Mat 5:6 Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness: for they shall be filled.
Mat 5:7 Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
Mat 5:8 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
Mat 5:9 Blessed are the peace-makers: for they shall be called children of God.
Mat 5:10 Blessed are they who are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Mat 5:11 Blessed are ye when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
Mat 5:12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
The Webster Bible
The word "blessed" also means happy, but the word happy really doesn't do full justice to the concept being conveyed here. It means the inward state of bliss that the person who seeks to truly follow God has within them. This doesn't mean the disciple won't have problems, or that things won't bother them, but rather that God will be with them regardless of the circumstances. So, even in the worst of situations, you just might find yourself feeling like saying "Peek a boo". Who knows, I might even get a cat someday!

Up, up and away

Imagine what it would be like to be in the basket of the balloon just taking off. Probably something like an elevator without the walls. I wonder just how high you could go in one of these things? Several years ago we lived in New Jersey and the townhouse development still had large open areas. Then one day in November a group of balloons landed in one of the undeveloped fields. What a sight it was! I still remember how BIG they were and HOW BEAUTIFUL! Its amazing to me how some things just make such an impact that they are never forgotten. Imagine how the apostle Paul must have felt when he penned these words:

2Co 12:1 It is doubtless not profitable for me to boast. For I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord.
2Co 12:2 I know a man in Christ, fourteen years ago (whether in the body, I don't know, or whether out of the body, I don't know; God knows), such a one caught up into the third heaven.
2Co 12:3 I know such a man (whether in the body, or outside of the body, I don't know; God knows),
2Co 12:4 how he was caught up into Paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.
2Co 12:5 On behalf of such a one I will boast, but on my own behalf I will not boast, except in my weaknesses.
2Co 12:6 For if I would desire to boast, I will not be foolish; for I will speak the truth. But I refrain, so that no man may think more of me than that which he sees in me, or hears from me.
2Co 12:7 By reason of the exceeding greatness of the revelations, that I should not be exalted excessively, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me, that I should not be exalted excessively.
2Co 12:8 Concerning this thing, I begged the Lord three times that it might depart from me.
2Co 12:9 He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Most gladly therefore I will rather glory in my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may rest on me.
2Co 12:10 Therefore I take pleasure in weaknesses, in injuries, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ's sake. For when I am weak, then am I strong.
The World English Bible
In the Bible there are three heavens; the first is the air about us, the second is all that we can see in the sky and last was the heaven above the others, where God dwells (paradise). To be allowed into that third heaven must be something that was the ultimate "high"! Makes ballooning look paltry, doesn't it? However, one day I hope to see it and I hope to see you there as well! Up, up and away!

12/21/08

Are you ready?

The rainy day had just begun to clear and the sun was shining as I passed Hack funeral home in Schaghticoke and started unto the two lane bridge. I wasn't going that fast, maybe 30 mph at most, but I began to skid. My skid turned into a full circle and then another and finally I was going forward, but by the passenger side of the car first. Then in horror, I noticed the car coming in my direction was doing the SAME THING. We just kept coming at one another and getting closer and closer. Finally we both stopped... just inches from each other. I am not sure how long it was before we moved our cars, but I know that I was a bit shaken and from the look on the other drivers face she was frightened. If we had hit, one of us could have gone off the bridge and it was a long, long way to the bottom.
When I saw the picture of the cat it reminded me of my skidding experience so long ago. The cat realizes what is about to happen and is fixated upon its impending doom. I know there was nothing I could have done to avoid my "almost" accident, but one thing is for sure; I can do a lot with the lifetime I have left to me. The question remains, Are you ready for the reality of this Bible passage?

Rev 20:11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.
Rev 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of the things which were written in the books, according to their works.
Rev 20:13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.
Rev 20:14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
Rev 20:15 And whoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.
The Webster Bible

12/20/08

Size of the dog

Size does matter, but sometimes its what's on the inside that really matters. Who would guess this situation could happen; not the big guy, that's for certain! Life is like that, full of surprises! Consider the following Bible passage and realize that if you are following God faithfully, you are not alone:

2Ki 6:15 And when the servant of the man of God had risen early, and gone forth, behold, a host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said to him, Alas, my master! how shall we do?
2Ki 6:16 And he answered, Fear not: for they that are with us are more than they that are with them.
2Ki 6:17 And Elisha prayed, and said, LORD, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the LORD opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire around Elisha.
2Ki 6:18 And when they came down to him, Elisha prayed to the LORD, and said, Smite this people, I pray thee, with blindness. And he smote them with blindness according to the word of Elisha.
I guess what explains the picture the best is that there is something inside the small dog that gives him the strength to stand up to the big one. In other words, it's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog.

12/18/08

The Seed

A successful business man was growing old and
knew it was time to choose a successor to take over the business.

Instead of choosing one of his Directors or his children,
he decided to do something different. He called all the young
executives in his company together.

He said, 'It is time for me to step down and choose the next CEO.
I have decided to choose one of you.' The young executives were
Shocked, but the boss continued. 'I am going to give each one
of you a SEED today - one very special SEED. I want you to plant
the seed, water it, and come back here one year from today with
what you have grown from the seed I have given you. I will then
judge the plants that you bring, and the one I choose will be
the next CEO.'

One man, named Jim, was there that day and he, like the others,
received a seed. He went home and excitedly, told his wife the
story. She helped him get a pot, soil and compost and he planted
the seed. Everyday, he would water it and watch to see if it had grown.
After about three weeks, some of the other executives began
to talk about their seeds and the plants that were beginning to grow.

Jim kept checking his seed, but nothing ever grew.

Three weeks, four weeks, five weeks went by, still nothing.

By now, others were talking about their plants, but Jim didn't have
a plant and he felt like a failure.

Six months went by -- still nothing in Jim's pot. He just knew he
had killed his seed. Everyone else had trees and tall plants, but
he had nothing. Jim didn't say anything to his colleagues, however.
He just kept watering and fertilizing the soil - He so wanted the
seed to grow.

A year finally went by and all the young executives of the company
brought their plants to the CEO for inspection.

Jim told his wife that he wasn't going to take an empty pot.
But she asked him to be honest about what happened. Jim felt sick
to his stomach, it was going to be the most embarrassing moment
of his life, but he knew his wife was right. He took his empty pot
to the board room. When Jim arrived, he was amazed at the variety
of plants grown by the other executives. They were beautiful --
in all shapes and sizes. Jim put his empty pot on the floor and
many of his colleagues laughed, a few felt sorry for him!

When the CEO arrived, he surveyed the room and greeted his young
executives.

Jim just tried to hide in the back. 'My, what great plants, trees,
and flowers you have grown,' said the CEO. 'Today one of you will
be appointed the next CEO!'

All of a sudden, the CEO spotted Jim at the back of the room with
his empty pot. He ordered the Financial Director to bring him to
the front. Jim was terrified. He thought, 'The CEO knows I'm a failure!
Maybe he will have me fired!'

When Jim got to the front, the CEO asked him what had happened
to his seed - Jim told him the story.

The CEO asked everyone to sit down except Jim. He looked at Jim,
and then announced to the young executives, 'Behold your next
Chief Executive Officer!

His name is Jim!' Jim couldn't believe it. Jim couldn't even grow
his seed.

'How could he be the new CEO?' the others said.

Then the CEO said, 'One year ago today, I gave everyone in this
room a seed. I told you to take the seed, plant it, water it,
and bring it back to me today. But I gave you all boiled seeds;
they were dead - it was not possible for them to grow.

All of you, except Jim, have brought me trees and plants and
flowers. When you found that the seed would not grow, you
substituted another seed for the one I gave you. Jim was the
only one with the courage and honesty to bring me a pot with
my seed in it. Therefore, he is the one who will be the new
Chief Executive Officer!'

* If you plant honesty, you will reap trust

* If you plant goodness, you will reap friends

* If you plant humility, you will reap greatness

* If you plant perseverance, you will reap contentment

* If you plant consideration, you will reap perspective

* If you plant hard work, you will reap success

* If you plant forgiveness, you will reap reconciliation

* If you plant faith in god , you will reap a harvest

So, be careful what you plant now;
it will determine what you will reap later.

Thank you Duane Nanz for sending me this e-mail!

12/17/08

The Big picture

The left picture is beautiful! It is a compilation of the three views on the right; taken from Chandra (in x-ray), Hubble (in optical) and Spitzer in infrared. Individually, they are very nice, but when seen together as a composite photo, they are stunning! Human beings are like that too, if we consider the composite effect of a person's intellect, personality and physical makeup we get the "big picture". Funny, I wonder why most people don't think of understanding the Godhead like that. If we view The father as the directing force (intellect), The Holy Spirit as the empowering force (or perhaps personality) and Jesus as the physical manifestation of God it makes a lot of sense to me. My grandmother knew me as Gary, my wife as "hon" and my children as dad. I wonder what the effect of this concept would have on our Bible study? Intellectually analyzing it, emotionally understanding it and practically applying it. Humm? Consider the following scripture, perhaps it will change the way you think about what God has said to you?

Joh 6:5 When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come to him, he saith to Philip, Whence shall we buy bread that these may eat?
Joh 6:6 (And this he said to prove him: for he himself knew what he would do.)
Joh 6:7 Philip answered him, Two hundred penny-worth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them make take a little:
Joh 6:8 One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother, saith to him,
Joh 6:9 There is a lad here, who hath five barley-loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many?
Joh 6:10 And Jesus said, Make the men sit down. (Now there was much grass in the place.) So the men sat down in number about five thousand.
Joh 6:11 And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes, as much as they would.
Joh 6:12 When they were satisfied, he said to his disciples, Gather the fragments that remain, that nothing may be lost.
Joh 6:13 Therefore they gathered them, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley-loaves, which remained over and above to them that had eaten.
Joh 6:14 Then those men, when they had seen the miracle that Jesus performed, said, This is truly that prophet that should come into the world.
Joh 6:15 When Jesus therefore perceived that they would come and take him by force, to make him a king, he departed again to a mountain himself alone.
Joh 6:16 And when evening had now come, his disciples went down to the sea,
Joh 6:17 And entered into a boat, and went over the sea towards Capernaum. And it was now dark, and Jesus had not come to them.
Joh 6:18 And the sea arose by reason of a great wind that blew.
Joh 6:19 So when they had rowed about five and twenty or thirty furlongs, they see Jesus walking on the sea, and drawing nigh to the boat: and they were afraid.
Joh 6:20 But he saith to them, It is I; be not afraid.
Joh 6:21 Then they willingly received him into the boat: and immediately the boat was at the land whither they were going.
Joh 6:22 The day following, when the people who stood on the other side of the sea saw that there was no other boat there, save that one into which his disciples had entered, and that Jesus went not with his disciples into the boat, but that his disciples had gone away alone;
Joh 6:23 (Yet there came other boats from Tiberias nigh to the place where they ate bread, after the Lord had given thanks:)
Joh 6:24 When the people therefore saw that Jesus was not there, neither his disciples, they also took boats, and came to Capernaum, seeking for Jesus.
Joh 6:25 And when they had found him on the other side of the sea, they said to him, Rabbi, when camest thou hither?
Joh 6:26 Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say to you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye ate of the loaves, and were satisfied.
Joh 6:27 Labor not for the food which perisheth, but for that food which endureth to everlasting life, which the Son of man will give to you: for him hath God the Father sealed.
Joh 6:28 Then said they to him, What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?
Joh 6:29 Jesus answered and said to them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.
Joh 6:30 They said therefore to him, What sign showest thou then, that we may see, and believe thee? what dost thou work?
Joh 6:31 Our fathers ate manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat.
Joh 6:32 Then Jesus said to them, Verily, verily, I say to you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven.
Joh 6:33 For the bread of God is he who cometh down from heaven, and giveth life to the world.
Joh 6:34 Then said they to him, Lord, evermore give us this bread.
Joh 6:35 And Jesus said to them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me, shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me, shall never thirst.
Joh 6:36 But I said to you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not.
Joh 6:37 All that the Father giveth me, shall come to me; and him that cometh to me, I will in no wise reject.
Joh 6:38 For I came down from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of him that sent me.
Joh 6:39 And this is the Father's will who hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me, I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.
Joh 6:40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one who seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.
Joh 6:41 The Jews then murmured at him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven.
Joh 6:42 And they said, Is not this Jesus the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? how is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven?
Joh 6:43 Jesus therefore answered and said to them, Murmur not among yourselves.
Joh 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father who hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.
Joh 6:45 It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught from God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned from the Father, cometh to me.
Joh 6:46 Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he who is from God, he hath seen the Father.
Joh 6:47 Verily, verily, I say to you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.
Joh 6:48 I am that bread of life.
Joh 6:49 Your fathers ate manna in the wilderness, and are dead.
Joh 6:50 This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat of it, and not die.
Joh 6:51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man shall eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.
Joh 6:52 The Jews therefore contended among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?
Joh 6:53 Then Jesus said to them, Verily, verily, I say to you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.
Joh 6:54 Whoever eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.
Joh 6:55 For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.
Joh 6:56 He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.
Joh 6:57 As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.
Joh 6:58 This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers ate manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.
The Webster Bible
If only the Jews could have applied all their senses then perhaps they would have understood!

12/16/08

Good news, Bad news

The picture is sort of gruesome, but it makes a point; life can be good or bad, depending on the circumstances. Here, it is good to be a bat and not so good to be a frog. I am hoping the frog escapes, but it sure does not look like it. I remember a quote from the movie braveheart, which goes something like this: “All men die, but not all really live”. True life is more than just existence, its coexistence with God.

The Bible says:

1Jn 1:1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the word of life;
1Jn 1:2 (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and testify, and show to you that eternal life which was with the Father, and was manifested to us;)
1Jn 1:3 That which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.
1Jn 1:4 And these things we write to you, that your joy may be full.
1Jn 1:5 This then is the message which we have heard from him, and declare to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.
1Jn 1:6 If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:
1Jn 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.
1Jn 1:8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
1Jn 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
1Jn 1:10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

The Webster Bible


Christianity is different from other religions in that God becomes man and then a best friend. How, because this man, this Jesus, did what I couldn't do; namely, solve my sin problem and restore fellowship with my maker. This is REAL LIFE and not just existence until I cease to be. If I am one with God, death does not really matter, so death just becomes a transition into a new form of spiritual life. As far as the frog is concerned, there is only one thing left to say; JUMP, NOW!!!!!

12/15/08

You better laugh...

I don't know if cats can really laugh; but people do! Over the past ten years I have discovered that I seem to laugh more. Why, because I'm funnier? I don't think I am any different than I was 15 or more years ago. I think its attitude, really! I can see it in myself when I go to work; I decide that no matter what happens, I AM GOING TO BE IN A GOOD MOOD! Well, I don't always succeed, because, well.... things happen! But I guess the Axum is true: A person is what they think about all day long. Consider the following Bible passage and THEN DECIDE WHAT YOU WILL DO TOMORROW!

Php 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.
Php 4:5 Let your moderation be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.
Php 4:6 Be anxious for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
Php 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, will keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Php 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are honest, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report; if there is any virtue, and if there is any praise, think on these things.
The Webster Bible
My thinking WILL CHANGE MY LIFE! "What the mind can conceive and believe it can achieve" is a long-time Amway motto worth quoting. Besides all this, I have to laugh... why? because I have mirrors in my house, that why.... and I do remember what I looked like at 20.

12/13/08

Roy Moore

Alabama Judge

Some of you may be wondering what Judge Roy Moore has been doing since he was removed from the bench for refusing to remove the Ten Commandments from his courtroom wall. Please read the poem he wrote. The following is a poem written by Judge Roy Moore from Alabama .
Judge Moore was sued by the ACLU for displaying the Ten Commandments in his courtroom foyer. He has been stripped of his judgeship and now they are trying to strip his right to practice law in Alabama ! The judge's poem sums it up quite well.

America the beautiful,Or so you used to be..
Land of the Pilgrims' pride; I'm glad they'll never see.
Babies piled in dumpsters, Abortion on demand,
Oh, sweet land of liberty; Your house is on the sand.
Our children wander aimlessly Poisoned by cocaine
Choosing to indulge their lusts, When God has said abstain
From sea to shining sea, Our Nation turns away
From the teaching of God's love And a need to always pray
We've kept God in our Temples , how callous we have grown.
When earth is but His footstool, And Heaven is His throne.
We've voted in a government that's rotting at the core,
Appointing Godless Judges; Who throw reason out the door,
Too soft to place a killer In a well deserved tomb,
But brave enough to kill a baby Before he leaves the womb.
You think that God's not Angry, that our land's a moral slum?
How much longer will He wait Before His judgment comes?
How are we to face our God, From Whom we cannot hide?
What then is left for us to do, But stem this evil tide?
If we who are His children, Will humbly turn and pray;
Seek His holy face And mend our evil way:
Then God will hear from Heaven; And forgive us of our sins,
He'll heal our sickly land And those who live within.
But, America the Beautiful, If you don't - then you will see,
A sad but Holy God Withdraw His hand from Thee.
~~Judge Roy Moore~~
My thanks to Nancy Womack for sending this e-mail to me.

12/11/08

USA

The Bible says:
Rom 13:1 Let every soul be subject to the higher powers. For there is no power but from God: the powers that are, are ordained by God.
Rom 13:2 Whoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.
Rom 13:3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power; do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise from the same:
Rom 13:4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou doest that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, an avenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
Rom 13:5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.
Rom 13:6 For, for this cause ye pay tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.
Rom 13:7 Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honor to whom honor. The Webster Bible
I think this is very straightforward; we are to obedient to the government! Yet, consider how our country has changed; banks are bailed out with billions and billions of our dollars, soon the auto industry will follow. Its human nature to want something for nothing and before you know it there will be a long line of businesses and local governments all wanting bailouts. Where does it end? When are people going to be REQUIRED TO WORK, REQUIRED TO BE ACCOUNTABLE, REQUIRED TO BE LAW-ABIDING CITIZENS? BUSINESSES AND GOVERNMENT AT ALL LEVELS SHOULD BE MADE ANSWERABLE FOR THEIR ACTIONS AND THOSE WHO COMMIT WRONG ACTUALLY PUNISHED!!
Remember this...

2Th 3:10 For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat. The Webster Bible
If all of America is owned by the government, perhaps USA might come to stand for United Socialist America? Hard to imagine; yet who would have thought prayer would have been taken out of school or "in God we trust" taken off our coins? I have a little confession to make here.... I voted for McCain because I thought the Libertarian party had no chance of winning. I will NEVER GO AGAINST MY CONVICTIONS AGAIN! Its time we all stood up and became really involved in our government before a new meaning for USA becomes reality !!!

12/10/08

A Real Superman

I remember watching the 50's TV series superman and wondering what it would be like to actually have superpowers! Imagine, being able to fly, to have xray vision and be impervious to projectiles! Most of us would probably get a swelled head quickly. I only know of one real superman and his name is Jesus. What has he done with his powers?
Php 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
Php 2:6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
Php 2:7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
Php 2:8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient to death, even the death of the cross.
Php 2:9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
Php 2:10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things on earth, and things under the earth;
Php 2:11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
The Webster Bible
The truth is: Those who desire to be superior to their fellow human beings have it all wrong; true greatness lies in being the servant of all, in enriching the life of everyone. The picture above only seems impressive, true greatness lies within those who have God as their king.

12/8/08

A second glance

"Beauty may be skin deep, but ugly goes straight to the bone". In this case, it may just be the other way round. I see something here that goes beyond unattractiveness. Something about the eyes of this dog say a warm heart is just waiting for a little love and affection. When we are young we don't think like this though. We are attracted to those who are "good looking". As I have aged I remember this: In 50 years we will all look like shrivelled prunes. Perhaps this is what made me look a little closer, or perhaps its because when I look in the mirror now, I think about what I looked like at age 20.
Consider this:
Rom 5:8 But God commendeth his love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Rom 5:9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
Rom 5:10 For if when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son; much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.
Rom 5:11 And not only so, but we also joy in God, through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.
The Webster Bible
I am glad someone cared enough about me to bless me even though I didn't deserve it; how about you? Now, take a second glance at the dog and think.....

12/7/08

Friends


This picture is precious to me, not only because my younger brother David is there, but also because of my dog “Pal”. It’s the only one I have ever seen of him and when I was young he was the best friend I had. Times were very hard in those days and it was very, very good to have a “best friend”. He was always there when I needed him and his friendship reminds me of the following Bible passage:

1Sa 19:1 Saul spoke to Jonathan his son, and to all his servants, that they should kill David. But Jonathan, Saul's son, delighted much in David.
1Sa 19:2 Jonathan told David, saying, Saul my father seeks to kill you: now therefore, please take care of yourself in the morning, and live in a secret place, and hide yourself:
1Sa 19:3 and I will go out and stand beside my father in the field where you are, and I will talk with my father about you; and if I see anything, I will tell you.
1Sa 19:4 Jonathan spoke good of David to Saul his father, and said to him, Don't let the king sin against his servant, against David; because he has not sinned against you, and because his works have been very good toward you:
1Sa 19:5 for he put his life in his hand, and struck the Philistine, and Yahweh worked a great victory for all Israel: you saw it, and rejoiced; why then will you sin against innocent blood, to kill David without a cause?
1Sa 19:6 Saul listened to the voice of Jonathan: and Saul swore, As Yahweh lives, he shall not be put to death.
1Sa 19:7 Jonathan called David, and Jonathan showed him all those things. Jonathan brought David to Saul, and he was in his presence, as before. WEB

Everything in the picture has changed, but the memory of Pal remains. Jesus became my best friend over the years and unlike Jonathan he is still interceding for me with the Greatest KING. Now, that is a friend!

12/6/08

A different pont of view

Its been almost a decade since I received my first senior discount at the Florida aquarium, but what I remember most was thinking..."So that's what its like to be a fish". Just looking at things from their point of view changed everything. I can understand a little better now the reason for the following Bible passage:

Mat 5:38 `Ye heard that it was said: Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth;
Mat 5:39 but I--I say to you, not to resist the evil, but whoever shall slap thee on thy right cheek, turn to him also the other;
Mat 5:40 and whoever is willing to take thee to law, and thy coat to take--suffer to him also the cloak.
Mat 5:41 `And whoever shall impress thee one mile, go with him two,
Mat 5:42 to him who is asking of thee be giving, and him who is willing to borrow from thee thou mayest not turn away.
Mat 5:43 `Ye heard that it was said: Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and shalt hate thine enemy;
Mat 5:44 but I--I say to you, Love your enemies, bless those cursing you, do good to those hating you, and pray for those accusing you falsely, and persecuting you,
Mat 5:45 that ye may be sons of your Father in the heavens, because His sun He doth cause to rise on evil and good, and He doth send rain on righteous and unrighteous.
Mat 5:46 `For, if ye may love those loving you, what reward have ye? do not also the tax-gatherers the same?
Mat 5:47 and if ye may salute your brethren only, what do ye abundant? do not also the tax-gatherers so?
Mat 5:48 ye shall therefore be perfect, as your Father who is in the heavens is perfect.
Young's Literal Translation

Perfection is not be absolutely perfect in everything we do; I don't think anyone can be completely free of wrong, but it does mean being the best we can be. That begins with trying to see things from another point of view. When we do this, we are ON OUR WAY. Now, who out there wants to be a fish?

12/4/08

Geronimo

You are next, but your knees are shaking and you want to turn back and then suddenly you find yourself being pushed over the edge into the unknown! Wow, its a long, long way to the bottom. Ever felt like that? I mean, its not just about going off ledges, is it? When you get married, buy a house, have kids, have GRAND KIDS, something changes in you.... you become someone new, something changes. All these things can be tough, but if God is with you, then somehow, someway, you just KNOW things are going to be OK!!! I like the story of Abram because of what he did; HE LISTENED AND OBEYED!

Gen 12:1 Now Yahweh said to Abram, "Get out of your country, and from your relatives, and from your father's house, to the land that I will show you.
Gen 12:2 I will make of you a great nation. I will bless you and make your name great. You will be a blessing.
Gen 12:3 I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you. In you will all of the families of the earth be blessed."
Gen 12:4 So Abram went, as Yahweh had spoken to him. Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed out of Haran.
Gen 12:5 Abram took Sarai his wife, Lot his brother's son, all their substance that they had gathered, and the souls whom they had gotten in Haran, and they went forth to go into the land of Canaan. Into the land of Canaan they came. The World English Bible
Its easy to do things when you are young, strong and perhaps a bit naive, but for Abram (later Abraham) to do this is a object lesson for us all; when The Word of God comes to us, perhaps the thing to do is to just obey! Your turn is next.... Geronimo

12/3/08

Misson possible!

The next time you think something is impossible, remember this picture. Its obvious the dog in the "overcoat" has a "can do" attitude. Read the following passage of Scripture and remember that its not the obstacle that is important, rather its having an attitude within you that says "mission possible"!

1Ki 18:17 It happened, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said to him, Is it you, you troubler of Israel?
1Ki 18:18 He answered, I have not troubled Israel; but you, and your father's house, in that you have forsaken the commandments of Yahweh, and you have followed the Baals.
1Ki 18:19 Now therefore send, and gather to me all Israel to Mount Carmel, and the prophets of Baal four hundred fifty, and the prophets of the Asherah four hundred, who eat at Jezebel's table.
1Ki 18:20 So Ahab sent to all the children of Israel, and gathered the prophets together to Mount Carmel.
1Ki 18:21 Elijah came near to all the people, and said, "How long will you waver between the two sides? If Yahweh is God, follow him; but if Baal, then follow him." The people answered him not a word.
1Ki 18:22 Then Elijah said to the people, "I, even I only, am left a prophet of Yahweh; but Baal's prophets are four hundred fifty men.
1Ki 18:23 Let them therefore give us two bulls; and let them choose one bull for themselves, and cut it in pieces, and lay it on the wood, and put no fire under; and I will dress the other bull, and lay it on the wood, and put no fire under.
1Ki 18:24 You call on the name of your god, and I will call on the name of Yahweh; and the God who answers by fire, let him be God." All the people answered, "It is well said."
1Ki 18:25 Elijah said to the prophets of Baal, "Choose one bull for yourselves, and dress it first; for you are many; and call on the name of your god, but put no fire under it."
1Ki 18:26 They took the bull which was given them, and they dressed it, and called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon, saying, Baal, hear us. But there was no voice, nor any who answered. They leaped about the altar which was made.
1Ki 18:27 It happened at noon, that Elijah mocked them, and said, Cry aloud; for he is a god: either he is musing, or he is gone aside, or he is on a journey, or peradventure he sleeps and must be awakened.
1Ki 18:28 They cried aloud, and cut themselves after their manner with knives and lances, until the blood gushed out on them.
1Ki 18:29 It was so, when midday was past, that they prophesied until the time of the offering of the evening offering; but there was neither voice, nor any to answer, nor any who regarded.
1Ki 18:30 Elijah said to all the people, Come near to me; and all the people came near to him. He repaired the altar of Yahweh that was thrown down.
1Ki 18:31 Elijah took twelve stones, according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob, to whom the word of Yahweh came, saying, Israel shall be your name.
1Ki 18:32 With the stones he built an altar in the name of Yahweh; and he made a trench about the altar, as great as would contain two measures of seed.
1Ki 18:33 He put the wood in order, and cut the bull in pieces, and laid it on the wood. He said, Fill four jars with water, and pour it on the burnt offering, and on the wood.
1Ki 18:34 He said, Do it the second time; and they did it the second time. He said, Do it the third time; and they did it the third time.
1Ki 18:35 The water ran around the altar; and he filled the trench also with water.
1Ki 18:36 It happened at the time of the offering of the evening offering, that Elijah the prophet came near, and said, Yahweh, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Israel, let it be known this day that you are God in Israel, and that I am your servant, and that I have done all these things at your word.
1Ki 18:37 Hear me, Yahweh, hear me, that this people may know that you, Yahweh, are God, and that you have turned their heart back again.
1Ki 18:38 Then the fire of Yahweh fell, and consumed the burnt offering, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench.
1Ki 18:39 When all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, Yahweh, he is God; Yahweh, he is God. The World English Bible
450:1 are terrible odds, but Elijah knew something the Baal prophets didn't, namely that there is but ONE GOD! This passage from 1st Kings has always been one of my favorites because of the confidence of Elijah in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. The moral of all this is: If you know you are right.... DO NOT BACK DOWN!

12/2/08

Just Gas...

Just a gas pump, right? Now think back a few MONTHS ago when gas was over $4/gallon. Then, it was really important because it seemed to be affecting everything! Overnight, EVERYTHING seemed more expensive! People talked about nothing else and they were ANGRY! Consider the following article sent to me by Ron Cameron:
The Mayonnaise Jar and 2 Cups of Coffee
When things in your life seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and the 2 cups of coffee.A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, he wordlessly picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was. The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar He shook the jar lightly The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was. The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with an unanimous 'yes.' The professor then produced two cups of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed. 'Now,' said the professor as the laughter subsided, 'I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life. The golf balls are the important things---your family, your children, your health, your friends and your favorite passions---and if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full. The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house and your car. The sand is everything else---the small stuff. 'If you put the sand into the jar first,' he continued, 'there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff you will never have room for the things that are important to you. 'Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Spend time with your children. Spend time with your parents. Visit with grandparents. Take time to get medical checkups. Take your spouse out to dinner. Play another 18. There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal Take care of the golf balls first---the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.' One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented. The professor smiled and said, 'I'm glad you asked.' The coffee just shows you that no matter how full your life may seem, there's always room for a couple of cups of coffee with a friend.' Please share this with someone you care about.. I JUST DID
I really liked this, but I think they should have added a lot more coffee and one more ingredient: gluten. When combined and heated the whole thing would solidify. God is like that; if HE holds everything together, then your life is rock solid.
Jesus said:
Mat 7:21 Not every one that saith to me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father who is in heaven.
Mat 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out demons? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
Mat 7:23 And then will I profess to them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
Mat 7:24 Therefore whoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him to a wise man, who built his house upon a rock:
Mat 7:25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
Mat 7:26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened to a foolish man, who built his house upon the sand:
Mat 7:27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell, and great was the fall of it.
The Webster Bible

The most important things in this life are those leading to the next. If God's priorities are truly yours, then life will be completely full. Its not the rolling stones, but life can be a gas, gas, gas! Anyone for a fill up?