9/15/11

The fork

I've read this before and thought it was worth passing along!
 
There was a young woman who had been diagnosed with a terminal illness and had been given three months to live. So as she was getting her things 'in order,' she contacted her Pastor and had him come to her house to discuss certain aspects of her final wishes.

She told him which songs she wanted sung at the service, what scriptures she would like read, and what outfit she wanted to be buried in.

Everything was in order and the Pastor was preparing to leave when the young woman suddenly remembered something very important to her..

'There's one more thing,' she said excitedly..

'What's that?' came the Pastor's reply.

'This is very important,' the young woman continued. 'I want to be buried with a fork in my right hand.'

The Pastor stood looking at the young woman, not knowing quite what to say.

That surprises you, doesn't it?' the young woman asked.

'Well, to be honest, I'm puzzled by the request,' said the Pastor.

The young woman explained. 'My grandmother once told me this story, and from that time on I have always tried to pass along its message to those I love and those who are in need of encouragement. In all my years of attending socials and dinners, I always remember that when the dishes of the main course were being cleared, someone would inevitably lean over and say, 'Keep your fork.' It was my favorite part because I knew that something better was coming...like velvety chocolate cake or deep-dish apple pie. Something wonderful, and with substance!'

So, I just want people to see me there in that casket with a fork in my hand and I want them to wonder 'What's with the fork?' Then I want you to tell them: 'Keep your fork ..the best is yet to come.'

The Pastor's eyes welled up with tears of joy as he hugged the young woman good-bye. He knew this would be one of the last times he would see her before her death. But he also knew that the young woman had a better grasp of heaven than he did. She had a better grasp of what heaven would be like than many people twice her age, with twice as much experience and knowledge. She KNEW that something better was coming.

At the funeral people were walking by the young woman's casket and
they saw the cloak she was wearing and the fork placed in her right hand. Over and over, the Pastor heard the question, 'What's with the fork?' And over and over he smiled.

During his message, the Pastor told the people of the conversation he had with the young woman shortly before she died. He also told them about the fork and about what it symbolized to her. He told the people how he could not stop thinking about the fork and told them that they probably would not be able to stop thinking about it either.

He was right. So the next time you reach down for your fork let it remind you, ever so gently, that the best is yet to come.
Friends are a very rare jewel , indeed. They make you smile and encourage you to succeed. Cherish the time you have, and the memories you share. Being friends with someone is not an opportunity, but a sweet responsibility.

Send this to everyone you consider a FRIEND...and I'll bet this will be an Email they do remember, every time they pick up a fork!

And just remember...keep your fork!
The BEST is yet to come!

OT Bible Reading 9/15

Sept. 15
Psalms 71-73

Psa 71:1 In you, Yahweh, I take refuge. Never let me be disappointed.
Psa 71:2 Deliver me in your righteousness, and rescue me. Turn your ear to me, and save me.
Psa 71:3 Be to me a rock of refuge to which I may always go. Give the command to save me, for you are my rock and my fortress.
Psa 71:4 Rescue me, my God, from the hand of the wicked, from the hand of the unrighteous and cruel man.
Psa 71:5 For you are my hope, Lord Yahweh; my confidence from my youth.
Psa 71:6 I have relied on you from the womb. You are he who took me out of my mother's womb. I will always praise you.
Psa 71:7 I am a marvel to many, but you are my strong refuge.
Psa 71:8 My mouth shall be filled with your praise, with your honor all the day.
Psa 71:9 Don't reject me in my old age. Don't forsake me when my strength fails.
Psa 71:10 For my enemies talk about me. Those who watch for my soul conspire together,
Psa 71:11 saying, "God has forsaken him. Pursue and take him, for no one will rescue him."
Psa 71:12 God, don't be far from me. My God, hurry to help me.
Psa 71:13 Let my accusers be disappointed and consumed. Let them be covered with disgrace and scorn who want to harm me.
Psa 71:14 But I will always hope, and will add to all of your praise.
Psa 71:15 My mouth will tell about your righteousness, and of your salvation all day, though I don't know its full measure.
Psa 71:16 I will come with the mighty acts of the Lord Yahweh. I will make mention of your righteousness, even of yours alone.
Psa 71:17 God, you have taught me from my youth. Until now, I have declared your wondrous works.
Psa 71:18 Yes, even when I am old and gray-haired, God, don't forsake me, until I have declared your strength to the next generation, your might to everyone who is to come.
Psa 71:19 Your righteousness also, God, reaches to the heavens; you have done great things. God, who is like you?
Psa 71:20 You, who have shown us many and bitter troubles, you will let me live. You will bring us up again from the depths of the earth.
Psa 71:21 Increase my honor, and comfort me again.
Psa 71:22 I will also praise you with the harp for your faithfulness, my God. I sing praises to you with the lyre, Holy One of Israel.
Psa 71:23 My lips shall shout for joy! My soul, which you have redeemed, sings praises to you!
Psa 71:24 My tongue will also talk about your righteousness all day long, for they are disappointed, and they are confounded, who want to harm me.
Psa 72:1 God, give the king your justice; your righteousness to the royal son.
Psa 72:2 He will judge your people with righteousness, and your poor with justice.
Psa 72:3 The mountains shall bring prosperity to the people. The hills bring the fruit of righteousness.
Psa 72:4 He will judge the poor of the people. He will save the children of the needy, and will break the oppressor in pieces.
Psa 72:5 They shall fear you while the sun endures; and as long as the moon, throughout all generations.
Psa 72:6 He will come down like rain on the mown grass, as showers that water the earth.
Psa 72:7 In his days, the righteous shall flourish, and abundance of peace, until the moon is no more.
Psa 72:8 He shall have dominion also from sea to sea, from the River to the ends of the earth.
Psa 72:9 Those who dwell in the wilderness shall bow before him. His enemies shall lick the dust.
Psa 72:10 The kings of Tarshish and of the islands will bring tribute. The kings of Sheba and Seba shall offer gifts.
Psa 72:11 Yes, all kings shall fall down before him. All nations shall serve him.
Psa 72:12 For he will deliver the needy when he cries; the poor, who has no helper.
Psa 72:13 He will have pity on the poor and needy. He will save the souls of the needy.
Psa 72:14 He will redeem their soul from oppression and violence. Their blood will be precious in his sight.
Psa 72:15 They shall live, and to him shall be given of the gold of Sheba. Men shall pray for him continually. They shall bless him all day long.
Psa 72:16 There shall be abundance of grain throughout the land. Its fruit sways like Lebanon. Let it flourish, thriving like the grass of the field.
Psa 72:17 His name endures forever. His name continues as long as the sun. Men shall be blessed by him. All nations will call him blessed.
Psa 72:18 Praise be to Yahweh God, the God of Israel, who alone does marvelous deeds.
Psa 72:19 Blessed be his glorious name forever! Let the whole earth be filled with his glory! Amen and amen.
Psa 72:20 This ends the prayers by David, the son of Jesse.
Psa 73:1 Surely God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart.
Psa 73:2 But as for me, my feet were almost gone. My steps had nearly slipped.
Psa 73:3 For I was envious of the arrogant, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
Psa 73:4 For there are no struggles in their death, but their strength is firm.
Psa 73:5 They are free from burdens of men, neither are they plagued like other men.
Psa 73:6 Therefore pride is like a chain around their neck. Violence covers them like a garment.
Psa 73:7 Their eyes bulge with fat. Their minds pass the limits of conceit.
Psa 73:8 They scoff and speak with malice. In arrogance, they threaten oppression.
Psa 73:9 They have set their mouth in the heavens. Their tongue walks through the earth.
Psa 73:10 Therefore their people return to them, and they drink up waters of abundance.
Psa 73:11 They say, "How does God know? Is there knowledge in the Most High?"
Psa 73:12 Behold, these are the wicked. Being always at ease, they increase in riches.
Psa 73:13 Surely in vain I have cleansed my heart, and washed my hands in innocence,
Psa 73:14 For all day long have I been plagued, and punished every morning.
Psa 73:15 If I had said, "I will speak thus;" behold, I would have betrayed the generation of your children.
Psa 73:16 When I tried to understand this, it was too painful for me;
Psa 73:17 Until I entered God's sanctuary, and considered their latter end.
Psa 73:18 Surely you set them in slippery places. You throw them down to destruction.
Psa 73:19 How they are suddenly destroyed! They are completely swept away with terrors.
Psa 73:20 As a dream when one wakes up, so, Lord, when you awake, you will despise their fantasies.
Psa 73:21 For my soul was grieved. I was embittered in my heart.
Psa 73:22 I was so senseless and ignorant. I was a brute beast before you.
Psa 73:23 Nevertheless, I am continually with you. You have held my right hand.
Psa 73:24 You will guide me with your counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.
Psa 73:25 Who do I have in heaven? There is no one on earth who I desire besides you.
Psa 73:26 My flesh and my heart fails, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
Psa 73:27 For, behold, those who are far from you shall perish. You have destroyed all those who are unfaithful to you.
Psa 73:28 But it is good for me to come close to God. I have made the Lord Yahweh my refuge, that I may tell of all your works.

NT Bible Reading 9/15

Sept. 15
1 Corinthians 11

1Co 11:1 Be imitators of me, even as I also am of Christ.
1Co 11:2 Now I praise you, brothers, that you remember me in all things, and hold firm the traditions, even as I delivered them to you.
1Co 11:3 But I would have you know that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is the man, and the head of Christ is God.
1Co 11:4 Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonors his head.
1Co 11:5 But every woman praying or prophesying with her head unveiled dishonors her head. For it is one and the same thing as if she were shaved.
1Co 11:6 For if a woman is not covered, let her also be shorn. But if it is shameful for a woman to be shorn or shaved, let her be covered.
1Co 11:7 For a man indeed ought not to have his head covered, because he is the image and glory of God, but the woman is the glory of the man.
1Co 11:8 For man is not from woman, but woman from man;
1Co 11:9 for neither was man created for the woman, but woman for the man.
1Co 11:10 For this cause the woman ought to have authority on her head, because of the angels.
1Co 11:11 Nevertheless, neither is the woman independent of the man, nor the man independent of the woman, in the Lord.
1Co 11:12 For as woman came from man, so a man also comes through a woman; but all things are from God.
1Co 11:13 Judge for yourselves. Is it appropriate that a woman pray to God unveiled?
1Co 11:14 Doesn't even nature itself teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a dishonor to him?
1Co 11:15 But if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her, for her hair is given to her for a covering.
1Co 11:16 But if any man seems to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither do God's assemblies.
1Co 11:17 But in giving you this command, I don't praise you, that you come together not for the better but for the worse.
1Co 11:18 For first of all, when you come together in the assembly, I hear that divisions exist among you, and I partly believe it.
1Co 11:19 For there also must be factions among you, that those who are approved may be revealed among you.
1Co 11:20 When therefore you assemble yourselves together, it is not the Lord's supper that you eat.
1Co 11:21 For in your eating each one takes his own supper first. One is hungry, and another is drunken.
1Co 11:22 What, don't you have houses to eat and to drink in? Or do you despise God's assembly, and put them to shame who don't have? What shall I tell you? Shall I praise you? In this I don't praise you.
1Co 11:23 For I received from the Lord that which also I delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night in which he was betrayed took bread.
1Co 11:24 When he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, "Take, eat. This is my body, which is broken for you. Do this in memory of me."
1Co 11:25 In the same way he also took the cup, after supper, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink, in memory of me."
1Co 11:26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes.
1Co 11:27 Therefore whoever eats this bread or drinks the Lord's cup in a manner unworthy of the Lord will be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord.
1Co 11:28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread, and drink of the cup.
1Co 11:29 For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks judgment to himself, if he doesn't discern the Lord's body.
1Co 11:30 For this cause many among you are weak and sickly, and not a few sleep.
1Co 11:31 For if we discerned ourselves, we wouldn't be judged.
1Co 11:32 But when we are judged, we are punished by the Lord, that we may not be condemned with the world.
1Co 11:33 Therefore, my brothers, when you come together to eat, wait one for another.
1Co 11:34 But if anyone is hungry, let him eat at home, lest your coming together be for judgment. The rest I will set in order whenever I come.