God’s Goodness and Mercy…

Ephes. 4:30 “And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.”

God’s Goodness and Mercy…….

A mom was concerned about her kindergarten son walking to school. He didn’t want his mother to walk with him. She wanted to give him the feeling that he had some independence but yet know that he was safe. So she had an idea of how to handle it. She asked a neighbor, Mrs. Goodnest, if she would please follow him to school in the mornings, staying at a distance, so he probably wouldn’t notice her.

Mrs. Goodnest said that since she was up early with her toddler anyway, it would be a good way for them to get some exercise as well, so she agreed. The next school day, Mrs. Goodnest and her little girl, Marcy, set out following behind Timmy as he walked to school with another neighbor boy he knew. She did this for the whole week.

As the boys walked and chatted, kicking stones and twigs, Timmy’s little friend noticed the same lady was following them as she seemed to do every day all week. Finally, he said to Timmy, “Have you noticed that lady following us to school all week? Do you know her?”

Timmy nonchalantly replied, “Yeah, I know who she is”.

The friend said, “Well, who is she”?

“That’s just Shirley Goodnest”, Timmy replied, “and her daughter Marcy”.

“Shirley Goodnest? Who the heck is she and why is she following us”?

“Well”, Timmy explained, “every night my Mom makes me say the 23rd Psalm with my prayers, ‘cuz she worries about me so much. And in the Psalm, it says, ‘Shirley Goodnest and Marcy shall follow me all the days of my life’, so I guess I’ll just have to get used to it”!

The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord makes his face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you; the Lord lift His countenance upon you, and give you peace.

Numbers 6:22-26 (And the Lord spoke unto Moses, saying, speak unto Aaron and unto his sons, saying, On this wise ye shall bless the children of Israel, saying unto them, The Lord bless thee, and keep thee: The Lord make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: The Lord lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.”

May Shirley Goodnest and Marcy be with you today, and always.

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Living for Jesus…

Are we still willing if it will cost us?

John 15:20a “Remember the word that I said to you; ’A servant is not greater than his master…'”

By Ernest Abbott

So, he died for his faith,
That’s fine,
It’s more than most of us do.

But say, can you add to that line,
That he lived for it to?

In his death he bore witness at last as a martyr to truth.
Did his life do the same,
In the past,
From the days of his youth?

It’s easy to die.
Men have died for a wish or a whim for bravado or passion or pride.
Was it harder for him?

But to live every day,
To live out all the truth that he dreamt.
While his friends met his conduct with doubt, And the world with
contempt.

Was it thus he plodded ahead never turning aside?

Then we will talk of the life that he lived,

Never mind that he died.

John 15:20 “Remember the word that I said to you; ‘A servant is not
greater than his master. 
 If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you.'”

Finding Absolute Truth…Yes there is…

II Tim 3:16,17 “All scripture is given by the inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be made perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

 Malachi 3:6a “For I am the Lord, I do not change;

 John 14:6 “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”

 Finding Absolute Truth….

For all you scientists out there and for all the students who have a hard time convincing these people regarding the truth > of the Bible…here’s something that shows God’s awesome creation > and shows that He is still in control.

Did you know that the Space Program is busy proving that > what has been called “myth” in the Bible is true? Mr. Harold Hill, President of the Curtis Engine Company in Baltimore Maryland > and a consultant in the space program, relates the Following > development:

I think one of the most amazing things that God has for us > today happened recently to our astronauts and space scientists at Green Belt, Maryland. They were checking the position of the sun, > moon, and planets out in space where they would be 100 years and > 1000 years from now. We have to know this so we won’t send a > satellite, up and have it bump into something later on its orbits. We > have to lay out the orbits in terms of the life of the satellite, and > where the planets will be so the whole thing will not bog down.

They ran the computer measurement back and forth over the Centuries > and it came to a halt. The computer stopped and put-up a red signal, > which meant that there was something wrong either with the information > fed into it or with the results as compared to the standards.

They called in the service department to check it out and they asked, > “What’s wrong?”  Well, they found there is a day missing in space in > elapsed time. They scratched their heads and tore their hair. There was > no answer.

Finally, a Christian man on the team said, “You know, one time I was in > inSunday school and they talked about the sun standing still.” > While they didn’t believe him, they didn’t have an answer either, so > they said, “Show us”.

He got a Bible and went back to the book of Joshua where they found > a pretty ridiculous statement for any one with ‘common sense.’ > There they found the Lord saying to Joshua, “Fear them not, I have > delivered them into thy hand; there shall not a man of them stand > before thee.”

Joshua was concerned because he was surrounded by the enemy and > if darkness fell they would overpower them. So Joshua asked the Lord > to make the sun stand still! That’s right, “The sun stood still and > the moon stayed—and hastened not to go down about a whole day!”

The astronauts and scientists said, “There is the missing day!” > They checked the computers going back into the time it was written > and found it was close but not close enough. The elapsed time that > was missing back in Joshua’s day was 23 hours and 20 minutes-not > a whole day.

They read the Bible and there it was “about (approximately) a day” > These little words in the Bible are important, but they were still > in trouble because if you cannot account for 40 minutes you’ll still > be in trouble 1,000 years from now. Forty minutes had to be found > because it can be multiplied many times over in orbits.

As the Christian employee thought about it, he remembered somewhere in the Bible where it said the sun went BACKWARDS. > The scientists told him he was out of his mind, but they got out > the Book and read these words in 2 Kings. Hezekiah, on his deathbed, was visited by the prophet Isaiah who told him that he was not going > to die.

Hezekiah asked for a sign as proof.  Isaiah said “Do you want the sun > to go ahead 10 degrees?” Hezekiah said “It is nothing for the sun to > go ahead 10 degrees, but let the shadow return backwards 10 degrees. > Isaiah spoke to the Lord and the Lord brought the shadow ten > degrees BACKWARD!

Ten degrees is exactly 40 minutes! Twenty-three hours and 20 minutes > in Joshua, plus 40 minutes in Second Kings make the missing day > in the universe!

Isn’t it amazing? Our God provides all the truth and direction needed for our lives. All we must do is believe and seek!

References:

Joshua 10:8 and 12, 13; 2 Kings 20:9-11

II Tim 3:16,17 “All scripture is given by the inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be made perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

If God said it, I believe it and that settles it……!

Take the Ant you Sluggard…

II Tim 3:16,17 “All scripture is given by the inspiration of God
and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for
instruction in righteousness that the man of God may be made perfect, thoroughly furnished until all good works.”

Take the Ant you Sluggard

Taken from a note written by Dr Dewey Hodges with minor additions.

This was created mainly for the high school
students wanting to make a good impression during
the first few weeks of the new school year. But as
you will see if offers yet another piece of evidence
for those needing it that our God is real.

Science was never my strong suit, but a few
years ago I learned some fascinating things
about ants. It’s likely that you have never
heard this before, and you can share something
totally new with your class (of course, adults
can impress their friends with this as well).

Here’s a condensed version of some basic
information about ants, taken from a Web site
at the University of Arizona, entitled “Adult
Males and Females”, and from your home encyclopedia.

When ant colonies reproduce, the new queens
and males may be found in the colony. These are
“flying ants” and have two pairs of wings.

Males generally have small heads, large eyes,
large thoraces, and a pair of claspers at the end of
the gaster. Once they fly (and mate), males do not
live very long.

After mating, new queens break off their wings
and never fly again. Without wings, they can
generally be distinguished from workers by their
larger body size, larger thorax and larger abdomen.
All workers are females.

Most of us who have had the most basic science
classes in high school and college (that would
definitely include me) have heard about the
dominance of female ants over males. I don’t
know exactly when this first became accepted as
fact by the scientific community, but given the
size of an ant, it makes sense that it has been
since the advent of the microscope, which has
been within the past 300 or so years.

Now go back about 3,000 years, to the book of
Proverbs, the sixth chapter, verses 6-8: “Go to the ant,
thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise: Which
having no guide, overseer, or ruler, provides her meat
in the summer, and gathers her food in the harvest”.

At first glance, some people might say, “So?
There are verses about ants in the Bible. Big deal.”
But look at how the ants in these verses are identified.
There has been a bit of controversy in recent months over
a new translation of the Bible which removes virtually
every reference to gender. It has been well-received in
some circles and highly criticized in others.

Part of the motivation for creating this new
translation was the long-standing allegation that the
Bible has always been sexist. Of course, that is a pile
of garbage, but a look at the use of gender-specific
language in the King James Version, which I have quoted
here, is relevant to our discussion.

The pronouns she and her are used 2,442 times in
the entire Bible, according to a search engine at bible.com.
The pronouns he, him and his are used 21,182 times. That’s
a huge difference, which some might say fuels the gender
discrimination argument.

But if you believe that every word in the Bible is
important and inspired by God the Holy Spirit, or even if
you don’t, you can easily gather from these numbers that
whenever a female pronoun is used in the Bible, it is used
intentionally. That brings us back to our ants.

Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways,
and be wise …

The ant cited in Proverbs is a female ant. If the
Bible were sexist, wouldn’t it assume the important ants
were male? Perhaps, unless the Author, who is God, knew for
a fact that the females were the ones he was talking about.
And the Author inspired His scribe to record this fact. A
Creator usually would know those facts.

How did Solomon know? He didn’t have a microscope
back then. There was absolutely no way humanly possible
to find out. So he either took a wild guess, or he found
out from God.

II Peter 1;20,21 tells us that God is the Author of
scripture and those privileged to be the scribes were
actually documenting God’s word instead of their own wisdom.
Now we’re starting to walk by faith and likely making many
uncomfortable. The letters of Paul, John, Peter, etc are in
actuality not their teachings but that of God. Scripture
takes on a much more meaningful tone with that in mind and
as we also keep from giving credit for its content and power
to men versus God. And of course that explains how Solomon
knew about those ants.

And of course this further means there actually is a
God, and He may be the Creator after all. We’re getting way
beyond science now. According to evolutionists and nearly
everybody else who determines what passes for science in
schools, we’re dabbling dangerously close to religion.

Maybe it is catastrophic to remove God from the origin
teaching in our schools. Or by allowing the public school
to be the tool to educate our families on topics they are
not equipped to teach on. Better stop that right now.

On second thought, forget about mentioning this
in class, especially in a public school. There’s no
telling what the reaction would be. Or just maybe it is
an appropriate topic if we are to be the light and the
salt of this world!!?? Remembering that if the salt has
lost its seasoning power than what good is it??

II Tim 3:16,17 “All scripture is given by the inspiration of God…”
Gen 1:1a”In the beginning God created…” Amen!

How is your seasoning this morning?

Lessons from Life…

James 2:15,16 “If a brother or sister is naked and destitute
of food, and one of you says to them, ‘Depart in peace, be
warmed and filled,’ but you do not give them the things
which are needed for the body, what does it profit?”

Lessons from Life:

During the waning years of the depression in a
small southeastern Idaho community, I used to stop by
Mr. Miller’s roadside stand for farm-fresh produce
as the season made it available. Food and money were still
extremely scarce and bartering was used, extensively.

One particular day Mr. Miller was bagging some
early potatoes for me. I noticed a small boy, delicate of
bone and feature, ragged but clean, hungrily apprising a
basket of freshly picked green peas.

I paid for my potatoes but was also drawn to the
display of fresh green peas. I am a pushover for creamed
peas and new potatoes. Pondering the peas, I couldn’t
help overhearing the conversation between Mr. Miller
and the ragged boy next to me.

“Hello Barry, how are you today?”

“H’lo, Mr. Miller. Fine, thank ya. Jus’ admirin’ them
peas……sure look good.”

“They are good, Barry. How’s your Ma?”

“Fine. Gittin’ stronger alla’ time.”

“Good. Anything I can help you with?”

“No, Sir. Jus’ admirin’ them peas.”

“Would you like to take some home?”

“No, Sir. Got nuthin’ to pay for ’em with.”

“Well, what have you to trade me for some of those peas?”

“All I got’s my prize marble here.”

“Is that right? Let me see it.”

“Here ’tis. She’s a dandy.”

“I can see that. Hmmmm, only thing is this one is blue and
I sort of go for red. Do you have a red one like this at home?”

“Not ‘zackley…. but, almost.”

“Tell you what. Take this sack of peas home with you and
next trip this way let me look at that red marble.”

“Sure will. Thanks, Mr. Miller.”

Mrs. Miller, who had been standing nearby, came over
to help me. With a smile she said: “There are two other boys
like him in our community, all three are in very poor
circumstances. Jim just loves to bargain with them for peas,
apples, tomatoes or whatever. When they come back with their
red marbles, and they always do, he decides he doesn’t like
red after all and he sends them home with a bag of produce for
a green marble or an orange one, perhaps.”

I left the stand, smiling to myself, impressed with
this man. A short time later I moved to Utah but I never forgot
the story of this man, the boys and their bartering. Several
years went by each more rapid than the previous one. Just
recently I had occasion to visit some old friends in that Idaho
community and while I was there learned that Mr. Miller had
died.

They were having his viewing that evening and knowing my
friends wanted to go, I agreed to accompany them. Upon our arrival
at the mortuary we fell into line to meet the relatives of the
deceased and to offer whatever words of comfort we could.

Ahead of us in line were three young men. One was in an
army uniform and the other two wore nice haircuts, dark suits and
white shirts…very professional looking.

They approached Mrs. Miller, standing smiling and composed,
by her husband’s casket. Each of the young men hugged her, kissed
her on the cheek, spoke briefly with her and moved on to the casket.
Her misty light blue eyes followed them as, one by one, each young
man stopped briefly and placed his own warm hand over the cold pale
hand in the casket. Each left the mortuary, awkwardly, wiping his eyes.

Our turn came to meet Mrs. Miller. I told her who I was and
mentioned the story she had told me about the marbles. Eyes
glistening she took my hand and led me to the casket. “Those three
young men, that just left, were the boys I told you about. They just
told me how they appreciated the things Jim “traded” them. Now, at
last, when Jim could not change his mind about color or size…they
came to pay their debt.

We’ve never had a great deal of the wealth of this world,” she
confided, “but, right now, Jim would consider himself the richest man
in Idaho.”

With loving gentleness she lifted the lifeless fingers of her
deceased husband. Resting underneath were three, magnificently shiny,
red marbles.

“We will not be remembered by our words, but by our life and
kind deeds.”

How will you be remembered?

Mat 20:26b-28 “…but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”

Jesus blood can cleanse me…

Jesus blood can cleanse me…..

Is there any sin in your life?

I know that is a concept you do not hear much of today but it has always been and is still active and sin still destroys our relationship with God. A Holy God cannot communicate with sinful people. And….

Romans 3:23 “For ALL have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”

 As with all of my sinful actions there are consequences.

Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is Eternal Life through Jesus Christ my Lord”

So the question is how do I restore that broken relationship.

Jesus blood can cleanse the vilest of sinners and restore that lost fellowship.

But be of good cheer…

I John 1:9 “If we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Isaiah 1:18 “Come, let us talk this over, says the Lord: no matter how deep the stain of your sins, I can take it out and make you as clean as freshly fallen snow.”

No amount of works or prayers can cleanse you.

Eph 2:8,9 “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God, not by works, so that no one can boast.”

 Acts 13:39 “And by Him all that believe are justified from all things, from which you could not be justified by the law…”

 

But Jesus can!!!!!!!!

 

II Cor 5:21 “For He has made Him to be sin for us, who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God, in Him.”

 

Listen to how important Jesus sacrifice for our sins was.

 

Heb 9:22-28 “And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission. Therefore it was necessary that the copies of the things in the heavens should be purified with these, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. For Christ has not entered the holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us; not that He should offer Himself often, as the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood of another– He then would have had to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now, once at the end of the ages, He has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment, so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation.”

Fear or Faith…it’s my choice…

Mat 11:28-30 “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

Fear or Faith…it’s my choice…

Do you know the legend of the Cherokee Indian youth’s rite of Passage?

His father takes him into the forest, blindfolds him and leaves him alone.

He is required to sit on a stump the whole night and not remove the blindfold until the rays of the morning sun shine through it.

He cannot cry out for help to anyone.

Once he survives the night, he is a MAN. He cannot tell the other boys of this experience, because each lad must come into manhood on his own.

The boy is naturally terrified. He can hear all kinds of noises. Wild beasts must surely be all around him. Maybe even some human might do him harm

The wind blew the grass and earth, and shook his stump, but he sat stoically, never removing the blindfold. It would be the only way he could become a man!

Finally, after a horrific night the sun appeared and he removed his blindfold. It was then that he discovered his father sitting on the stump next to him. He had been at watch the entire night, protecting his son from harm. We, too, are never alone.

Even when we don’t know it, God is watching over us, sitting on the stump beside us. When trouble comes, all we have to do is reach out to Him.

Heb 13:5 “Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Romans 10:17 “Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.”