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Saturday 5/18 ~ Rejoice and keep Satan puzzled

The scripture for today, May 18 (5/18), is 1st Thessalonians 5:18 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

OldOldTunes-Thumbnail“Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

This is one of the most difficult verses in the Bible to follow. How can we rejoice with the loss of a loved one, of health, of a job, of a home, of a position? The Christians at Thessalonica, in Greece, had been suffering a lot of persecution for being Christians. Some had even been killed for their faith.

Satan will do all he can to cause bad to happen in your life in order to get you to blame God and forsake him. But the real blame belongs on Satan. It may sometimes seem like the harder you try to follow God, the worse things get in your life.

Satan is afraid of you and is trying more than ever to weaken you, to break you, and get you back on his side. He doesn’t have to attack people he already has.

And sometimes God stands back and tells Satan, “Do your best. This person will grow stronger, not weaker.” Along with the Christians in Thessalonica, you can “become a model….your faith in God…known everywhere” (1st Thessalonians 1:7-8).

So, through your tears, rejoice that Satan is so afraid of you. And at the same time, keep your eyes on Jesus who never gave in when Satan caused bad to happen to him. Rejoice that you are counted worthy to be treated the same way Jesus was treated. Give thanks and keep Satan frustrated and puzzled.

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Wednesday 5/15 ~ Stuff

The scripture for today, May 15 (5/15), is Ecclesiastes 5:15 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

0-Titus-Cover-Lg Thumb“Naked a man comes from his mother’s womb, and as he comes, so he departs. He takes nothing from his labor that he can carry in his hand.”

As most people enter their senior years, they finally understand this verse. In their youth they struggled to get jobs and status and things. Some accomplished it and some didn’t. But in the senior years….

          when health is gradually declining….

                 the world is passing them by….

                         and they are sitting in their chair most of the time

….the main thing people look back on is what difference they made in their world, and how they did or did not help people important to them.

Often in their senior years when their income goes down and they are living only on a small pension, and they are unable to keep their big house, and fancy car,  and impressive stuff,  they realize they are still the same person inside regardless of what they own.

Ask a senior what they want for a birthday present. It is not likely to be things. It is likely to be time spent with a loved one or something special given to someone in need.

What about you?  How much time are you spending on things?

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Tuesday 5/14 ~ You will not be able to stop

The scripture for today, May 14 (5/14), is 2nd Corinthians 5:14a as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

00-Stephen-Cover-Kindle-Thumbnail“For Christ’s love compels us….”

On a distant hill a very long time ago, something unbelievable happened.

Jesus ~ God materialized ~ died both physically and spiritually in your place! (Remember when he said God had forsaken him?) He knew you couldn’t come back from either kind of death on your own, so he did it for you. Such terrible things he went through for you so you wouldn’t have to and would fail.

Love is powerful! It causes you to do things for someone you love that you never wanted to do and never dreamed you could do.

How powerful is your love for Christ? And for those he was compelled to die for? Do you share his love with others? 1st John 4:18 says, “Perfect love casts out fear.”

Reach out to people who think Jesus will ruin their fun, or has too many rules, or could never forgive them, or wouldn’t stop a tragedy. If not in person, tell them in a note, a phone call, email, even a song. There are ways.

 Reach out. You can if Christ’s love compels you. You will not be able to stop.

Image result for "Buy the book" button redSTEPHEN: UNLIKELY MARTYR became obsessed with the Lord he loved and for people around him who did not know about Jesus’ love. This young man was so compelled, nothing stopped him ~ not even death. To BUY NOW, click a picture or paste this: https://amzn.to/2QcCWhr

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Monday 5/13 ~Just for you

The scripture for today, May 13 (5/13), is 1st John 5:13f as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

00-Stephen-Cover-Kindle-Thumbnail“I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. This is the confidence we have in approaching God: That if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.”

Ah, to know you have eternal life.  It’s easy to say. “I’m so happy because I have eternal life.”  Easy to say. But do you really believe it?

I hear Christians everywhere lament their death.  “Whew, I could have died in that car crash” “Oh, no, I just took the wrong medicine and it will kill me.”  “Hurry, get me to the hospital before I die!”

Yes, life here is precious. But it is only the bud of the flower, the spark of the fire, the whisper of the song. Our life here is like living in a dark cave.

Why would a truly believing Christian fear walking through that marvelous door where Jesus himself awaits their arrival?

True, part of looking forward to heaven is knowing what it looks like. Revelation gives you a hint but it is symbolic. Cling to what you know and believe. Rush to the door out of the cave in anticipation for the world you were always meant to live in.

Some people say, “But I want to be here to watch my children or grandchildren grow up.” What then? To watch them graduate and get a job and start having babies? When does it end?

Stop right now.   Take a deep breath. Ask God to forgive your doubts and selfishness and putting things and people before him. Then look up. Look up! He is there waiting for you. His hands are reaching out to you. Those hands that were nailed to the cross for you. His hands that are now full of healing and tenderness and glory just for you.

Image result for "Buy the book" button redSTEPHEN: UNLIKELY MARTYR gave up his life when he was probably in his 20s. He was a deacon, so left behind a wife and small children. It was his choice. He was a coward at 17. What changed him? How? What did it take for him to walk into that Sanhedron courtroom, knowing he would not walk out alive? Toward the end, he saw Jesus in heaven. He saw the door and rushed through it.  To BUY NOW, click a picture or paste this:  https://amzn.to/2vYFWV3

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