Listen Long then MAYBE Speak….

Listen Long then MAYBE Speak !

When is the last time you said something you wanted to take back but could not?
Once it leaves your lips it is history! The solution is to think much longer and harder and
louder than we speak!

The tonque may be the toughest things in life to control!!!

Proverbs 17:28 “Even a fool, when he holds his peace, is counted wise: and he that shuts his mouth is esteemed a man of understanding.”

Phil 2:14,15 “Do all things without murmurings and disputings: that you may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom you shine as lights in the world.”

Before you try speaking this morning try to;

James 1:19 “So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath;”

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In God we Trust….

Romans 13:1a “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities…”

In God we Trust…..

The one dollar bill you’re looking at first came off the presses in 1957 in its present design. This so-called paper money is in fact a cotton and linen blend, with red and blue minute silk fibers running through it. It is actually material. We’ve all washed it without it falling apart. A special blend of ink is used, the contents we will never know.

It is overprinted with symbols and then it is starched to make it water resistant and pressed to give it that nice crisp look. If you look on the front of the bill, you will see the scales for the balanced budget. In the center you have a carpenter’s T-square, a tool used for an even cut. Underneath is the Key to the United States Treasury. That’s all pretty easy to figure out, but what is on the back of that dollar bill is something we should all know.

If you turn the bill over, you will see two circles. Both circles, together, comprise the Great Seal of the United States. The First Continental Congress requested that Benjamin Franklin and a group of men come up with a Seal.

It took them four years to accomplish this task and another two years to get it approved. If you look at the left-hand circle, you will see a Pyramid. Notice the face is lighted and the western side is dark. This country was just beginning. We had not begun to explore the West or decided what we could do for Western Civilization.

The Pyramid is uncapped, again signifying that we were not even close to being finished. Inside the capstone you have the all-seeing eye, an ancient symbol for divinity. It was Franklin’s belief that one man couldn’t do it alone, but a group of men, with the help of God, could do anything.

“IN GOD WE TRUST” is on this currency. The Latin above the pyramid, ANNUIT COEPTIS, means, “God has favored our undertaking.” The Latin below the pyramid, NOVUS ORDO SECLORUM means, “A new order has begun.” At the base of the pyramid is the Roman numeral for 1776.

If you look at the right-hand circle, and check it carefully, you will learn that it is on every National Cemetery in the United States. It is also on the Parade of Flags Walkway at the Bushnell, Florida National Cemetery and is the centerpiece of most heroes’ monuments. Slightly modified, it is the seal of the President of the United States and it is always visible whenever he speaks; yet no one knows what the symbols mean.

The Bald Eagle was selected as a symbol for victory for two reasons: first, he is not afraid of a storm; he is strong and he is smart enough to soar above it. Secondly, he wears no material crown. We had just broken from the King of England.

Also, notice the shield is unsupported. This country can now stand on its own. At the top of that shield you have a white bar signifying congress, a unifying factor. We were coming together as one nation. In the Eagle’s beak you will read,

“E PLURIBUS UNUM”, meaning “one nation from many people.” Above the Eagle you have thirteen stars representing the original colonies, and any clouds of misunderstanding rolling away. Again, we were coming together as one. Notice what the Eagle holds in his talons. He holds an olive branch and arrows. This country wants peace, but we will never be afraid to fight to preserve peace. The Eagle always wants to face the olive branch, but in time of war, his gaze turns toward the arrows.

In God we trust is still as relevant as when the founders of our country placed it on our currency. If not, then our nation is in big trouble.

Romans 13:1 “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there
is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.”

Children – Train them up….

Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

Technology gave us the Printing Press, Radio, TV, Computers and puts into the hands of parents a means of providing spiritual insight and direction to the family.  These tools can be used in the shaping of the lives of their household. But the keepers of them must be diligent to watch over the pages which they allow to enter first their mind and then those in their households. The responsibility is to know the character of every Book, Magazine, Website, TV and Radio channel which comes within their doors, and should resolutely exclude everything which would defile. Then, while they exclude everything whose influence would be for evil, if they are wise they will bring into their home as much as possible of pure, elevating, and refining literature. Every beautiful thought which enters an adult and child’s mind, adds to the strength and loveliness of the character in after days. The educating influence of the best books and magazines is incalculable, and no parent can afford to lose it in the training of his family. It is also vital that the parents first see themselves as having the same needs as the young minds they are seeking to form.

BEWARE! Remember the enemy also knows how to use these tools so guard your mind and your family’s minds!
Col 2:8 “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the ways of the world, and not after Christ.”

 

Here is a tool to judge every media tool by;
Phil 4:8 “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

What Children can do for us….

Mat 16:24 “If anyone will come after Me, let them deny themselves, take up their cross and follow Me.”

If you never deny yourself or seek to help and understand others you will never know the joy of life.

WHAT CHILDREN CAN DO FOR US

She was six years old when I first met her on the beach near where I live. I drive to this beach, a distance of three or four miles, whenever the world begins to close in on me. She was building a sand castle or something and looked up, her Eyes as blue as the sea.

“Hello,” she said. I answered with a nod, not really in the mood to bother with a small child.

“I’m building,” she said.
“I see that. What is it?” I asked, not caring.

“Oh, I don’t know, I just like the feel of sand.”

“That sounds good, I thought, and slipped off my shoes.

A sandpiper glided by. “That’s a joy,” the child said.

“It’s a what?”

“It’s a joy. My mama says sandpipers come to bring us joy. “The bird went gliding down the beach.

“Good-bye joy,” I muttered to myself “hello pain,” and turned to walk on. I was depressed; my life seemed completely out of balance.

“What’s your name?” She wouldn’t give up.

“Robert,” I answered. “I’m Robert Peterson.”

“Mine’s Wendy… I’m six.”

“Hi, Wendy.”

She giggled. “You’re funny,” she said.

In spite of my gloom I laughed too and walked on. Her musical giggle followed me.

“Come again, Mr.P,” she called. “We’ll have another happy day.”

The days and weeks that followed belonged to others: a group of unruly Boy Scouts, PTA meetings, an ailing mother. The sun was shining one morning as I took my hands out of the dishwater.”I need a sandpiper,” I said to myself gathering up my coat. The ever-changing balm of the seashore awaited me. The breeze was chilly, but I strode along, trying to recapture the serenity I needed. I had forgotten the child and was startled when she appeared.
“Hello, Mr. P,” she said. “Do you want to play?”
“What did you have in mind?” I asked, with a twinge of annoyance.

“I don’t know, you say.”

“How about charades?”  I asked sarcastically.

The tinkling laughter burst forth again. “I don’t know what that is.”

“Then let’s just walk.” Looking at her, I noticed the delicate fairness of her face.

“Where do you live?” I asked.
“Over there.” She pointed toward a row of summer cottages.

Strange, I thought, in winter. “Where do you go to school?”

“I don’t go to school. Mommy says we’re on vacation.” She chattered little girl talk as we strolled up the beach, but my mind was on other things. When I left for home, Wendy said it had been a happy day. Feeling surprisingly better, I smiled at her and agreed.

Three weeks later, I rushed to my beach in a state of near panic. I was in no mood to even greet Wendy. I thought I saw her mother on the porch and felt like demanding she keep her child
at home.

“Look, if you don’t mind,” I said crossly when Wendy caught up with me,
“I’d rather be alone today.”

She seemed unusually pale and out of breath.

“Why?” she asked. I turned to her and shouted, “Because my mother died!” and thought, my God, why was I saying this to a little child?
“Oh,” she said quietly, “then this is a bad day.”

“Yes,” I said, and yesterday and the day before and-oh, go away!”

“Did it hurt?” she inquired.

“Did what hurt?” I was exasperated with her, with myself.

“When she died?” ”

Of course it hurt!!!!” I snapped, misunderstanding. Wrapped up in myself, I strode off.
A month or so after that, when I next went to the beach, she wasn’t there. Feeling guilty,
ashamed and admitting to myself I missed her, I went up to the cottage after my walk and knocked at the door. A drawn looking young woman with honey-colored hair opened the door.

“Hello,” I said. “I’m Robert Peterson. I missed your little girl today and wondered where she was.”

“Oh yes, Mr. Peterson, please come in. Wendy spoke of you so much. I’m afraid I allowed her to bother you. If she was a nuisance, please accept my apologies.”

“Not at all-she’s a delightful child,” I said, suddenly realizing that I meant it. Where is she?”

“Wendy died last week, Mr. Peterson. She had leukemia. Maybe she didn’t tell you.”
Struck dumb, I groped for a chair. My breath caught.

“She loved this beach; so when she asked to come we couldn’t say no. She seemed so much better here and had a lot of what she called happy days. But the last few weeks, she declined rapidly…” her voice faltered. She left something for you … if only I can find it. Could you wait a moment while I look?”

I nodded stupidly, my mind racing for something, anything, to say to this lovely young woman.
She handed me a smeared envelope, with MR. P printed in bold, childish letters. Inside was a drawing in bright crayon hues, a yellow beach, a blue sea, and a brown bird.
Underneath was carefully printed:

A SANDPIPER TO BRING YOU JOY.

Tears welled up in my eyes, and a heart that had almost forgotten to love opened wide. I took
Wendy’s mother in my arms. “I’m so sorry, I’m sorry, I’m so sorry,” I muttered over and over, and we wept together.

The precious little picture is framed now and hangs in my study. Six words one for each year of her life that speaks to me of harmony, courage, an undemanding love. A gift from a child with sea-blue eyes and hair the color of sand-who taught me the gift of love.

The above is a true story sent out by Robert Peterson.

Mat 16:24a “If anyone will come after Me, let them deny themselves…”

Bible Interpretation – Can I…

Bible Interpretation – Can I…

Many people today feel they are inadequate in and of themselves to interpret scripture. Some have been taught that way and some are simply lazy understanding that it takes a time commitment to do so. Either way both are wrong according to the word of God itself. Noted below are some principles for interpreting scripture that have helped me along my journey to love, honor and obey God.

Can I interpret scripture or am I dependent upon someone else to provide me with God’s truths as they see them? The answer is yes you can, but our Lord as with all questions provides some guidelines in doing so. First keep in mind that Jesus Church as defined in scripture was instituted by God and designed by Him. In it He gives some members the Spiritual Gift of Pastor, some Teacher and some of the other gifts designed to aid in our search for understanding His truths. They were not placed in the Church to dictate our beliefs but to help us in our quest to find, love, worship and obey God. Our responsibility is to check out our teachers say using scripture to do so. We are to take advantage of those persons using those Gifts and what our Lord will teach us through them.

But as you will note in the principles identified below if for some reason beyond our control we are not able to attend a biblically sound Church with those members teaching, then God the Holy Spirit says that He will teach us. So the bottom line is that God will teach me if I truly seek Him. I will need to present myself to studying scripture and then God will provide me with the truths of His word that I need for my life.

  • I John 2:27a But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you;…”
    • The anointing mentioned comes from God the Holy Spirit to ‘born again’ believers. If you have not yet trusted Jesus as your Savior you do not have the anointing.

The Principles for Bible Interpretation;

  1. Must be ‘born again’ which is when the Holy Spirit comes into us.
  2. As ‘born again’ believers the Holy Spirit becomes our Teacher and uses many means to teach us.
  3. The Church was designed by God to be one of our teachers by those within it using their Spiritual Gifts to do so. The Church if doctrinally sound supports the family teaching and interpreting of scripture.
  4. Scripture never contradicts itself so you can never take one verse all by itself to prove a point. The rest of scripture must support the point or modify it so that they all agree.
  5. You need to understand the context of the passage surrounding the verse in question as to whom it is written to, when it was written, the situation the hearers were in, etc. Most of the NT is written to ‘born again’ believers.
  6. The Bible is not solely a history book. It truths are relevant for all ages. The unsaved will see scripture and the study of it as foolishness.
  7. Bible interpretation requires study. We are to study the scripture daily to please God as those in Berea did.
  8. God’s truths never change so base your acceptance of a Church or an individual’s teaching on God’s word. No Church teaching can change or replace it. It requires you pray for God’s wisdom and your study so God can provide it.
  9. It requires faith to trust in the Holy Spirit to be our interpreter just as it requires faith to be ‘born again’.
  10. God will protect His truths or scriptures down through the ages so we always have them to live by.

The following are some Bible passages supporting these principles;

  1. Must be ‘born again’ which is when the Holy Spirit comes into us. No Holy Spirit = no salvation.
    1. John 3:3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
    2. Acts 16:30b, 31 “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.”
    3. Rom 8:9 “But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His.”
  2. As ‘born again’ believers the Holy Spirit becomes our Teacher and uses many means to teach us.
    1. John 14:26 “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.”
  3. The Church was designed by God to be one of our teachers and those within it using their Spiritual Gifts to do so. The Church if doctrinally sound supports the family teaching and interpreting of scripture. Infallibility (Church clergy speaking for and as God) is not taught in scripture. Jesus Church is not any one denomination but is made up of all ‘born again’ believers. The only Church name or denomination mentioned in scripture is ‘the Way’.
    1. Heb 10:25 “not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.”
    2. Rom 8:9 “But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His.”
    3. Acts 24:14 “But this I confess to you, that according to the Way which they call a sect, so I worship the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the Law and in the Prophets.”
  4. Scripture never contradicts itself so you can never take one verse all by itself to prove a point. The rest of scripture must support the point in question. All scriptures are in agreement.
    1. The best example would be taking James 2:17 (faith without works is dead) all by itself. If we do we can say that salvation includes works after we accept Jesus as our Savior. Other scriptures like Eph 2:8, 9, Titus 3:5 note that salvation is by Grace through faith and not by any of our works. Gal 2:21 notes that if we can add works to what we must do to be saved than Jesus sacrifice for our sins was done in vain.
    2. Both salvation passages taken together bring us God’s wisdom. What God is saying in James 2:17 when interpreting scripture is that real saving faith will be displayed by our works as a sign of our salvation.
  5. You need to understand the context of the passage surrounding the verse in question as to whom it is written to, when it was written, the situation the hearers were in, etc. Most of the NT is written to ‘born again’ believers and must be read with that in mind.
  6. The Bible is not solely a history book. It truths are relevant for all ages. The unsaved will see scripture and the study of it as foolishness.
    1. I Cor 2:14 “But the natural man (unsaved man) does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”
  7. Bible interpretation requires study. We are to study the scripture daily to please God as those in Berea did.
    1. Acts 17:11 “These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.”
  8. God’s truths never change so base your acceptance of a Church or an individual’s teaching on God’s word. No Church teaching can change or replace it. It requires you pray for God’s wisdom and your study so God can provide it.
    1. Mal 3:6A“For I am the Lord, I do not change;”
    2. James 1:17 “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.”
  9. It requires faith to trust in the Holy Spirit to be our interpreter just as it requires faith to be ‘born again’.
    1. Eph 2:8, 9 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.
    2. Heb 11:6 “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”
  10. God will protect His truths or scriptures down through the ages so we always have them to live by.
    1. Mat 5:18 18For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled.

Be sure to check out the scriptures I noted above to see if they are true using the principles noted above………..

2 Tim 3:16, 17 “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

Unconditional Love….

I John 3:17, 18 “But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart on him, how does the love of God abide in him? My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.”

Unconditional Love…

I am a mother of three (ages 14, 12, 3) and have recently completed my college degree. The last class I had to take was Sociology. The teacher was absolutely inspiring with the qualities that I wish every human being had been graced with. Her last project of the term was called “Smile.”

The class was asked to go out and smile at three people and document their reactions. I am a very friendly person and always smile at everyone and say hello anyway, so, I thought this would be a piece of cake, literally.

Soon after we were assigned the project, my husband, youngest son, and I went out to McDonald’s one crisp March morning. It was just our way of sharing special play time with our son. We were standing in line, waiting to be served, when all of a sudden everyone around us began to back away, and then even my husband did. I did not move an inch …. an overwhelming feeling of panic welled up inside of me as I turned to see why they had moved. As I turned around I smelled a horrible “dirty body” smell, and there standing behind me were two poor homeless men. As I looked down at the short gentleman, close to me, he was “smiling”. His beautiful sky blue eyes were full of God’s Light as he searched for acceptance.

He said, “Good day” as he counted the few coins he had been clutching. The second man fumbled with his hands as he stood behind his friend. I realized the second man was mentally challenged and the blue eyed gentleman was his salvation. I held my tears as I stood there with them. The young lady at the counter asked him what they wanted. He said, “Coffee is all Miss” because that was all they could afford. (If they wanted to sit in the restaurant and warm up, they had to buy something. He just wanted to be warm).

Then I really felt it – the compulsion was so great I almost reached out and embraced the little man with the blue eyes. That is when I noticed all eyes in the restaurant were set on me, judging my every action. I smiled and asked the young lady behind the counter to give me two more breakfast meals on a separate tray. I then walked around the corner to the table that the men had chosen as a resting spot. I put the tray on the table and laid my hand on the blue eyed gentleman’s cold hand.

He looked up at me, with tears in his eyes, and said, “Thank you…”

I leaned over, began to pat his hand and said, “I did this for you because God is here working through me to give you hope.”

I started to cry as I walked away to join my husband and son. When I sat down my husband smiled at me and said, “That is why God gave you to me, Honey. To give me hope. We held hands for a moment and at that time we knew that only because of the Grace of God that we had been given were we able to give.

We are not regular church goers, but we are believers. That day showed me the pure Light of God’s sweet love. I returned to college, on the last evening of class, with this story in hand.

I turned in “my project” and the instructor read it. Then she looked up at me and said, “Can I share this?” I slowly nodded as she got the attention of the class. She began to read and that is when I knew that we as human beings need to heal people and to be healed. The fantastic blessing was that God can use me to do so.

By God’s way I had been used to touch the people at McDonald’s, my husband, son, instructor, and every soul that shared the classroom on the last night I spent as a college student.

I graduated with one of the biggest lessons I would ever learn:
UNCONDITIONAL ACCEPTANCE.

Unconditional Love = Romans 5:8 “But God demonstrated His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

I John 3:18 “My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.”