Tuesday 4/24 ~ When Mt St Helens blew, I looked out my window and…

The Scripture for today, April 24, (4/24) is Jeremiah 4:24 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

02-Noah-KindleThumbnail“I looked at the mountains and they were quaking, all the hills were swaying.”

I was living in a village near the bottom of Mt. St. Helens when it blew.  We had lived there for eight years. We had often taken our children up to it and gone sledding, built snow forts, made snow angels, the works. 

It was our mountain. Our beautiful mountain. It reminded me of an upside-down ice-cream cone.  It was perfect in every way.  Everyone knew it was a volcano, but it had formed thousands of years before and would continue like it was for thousands of years in the future. It was our mountain and it belonged to us to do with as we pleased.

But it wasn’t our mountain.  One morning I looked outside. It seemed as though we had been plunged into the interior of a furnace with all its ashes. I stared. It was snowing gray ash.  I stared more, wondering what the birds had done.  Relieved, I saw them huddled together under bushes.

Of course, the radio and TV had switched to Emergency. We were told to stay indoors because ash is deadly to the lungs. If we did go out, we had to wear surgical masks. If we drove, we were told to put nylons over the air filter and not go over 10 mph.  Even then, the ash flew everywhere. Our freeway entrance and exit were blocked. The most disturbing thing I heard on the radio (everyone kept their radio on day and night) was that we were at the top of the San Andreas Fault.  And so we, like the birds, huddled and waited for more unknown.

Not only was our mountain turned inside out, but our world was turned inside out.

We have expressions that something is “as eternal as the mountains” or “as old as the hills”. Not true. Nothing on earth is eternal. That also includes things, people, power, position, belongings, even dreams.  Eventually, they quake and sway and are gone. Only that which is spiritual is forever. Will your soul be able to handle it?

~~~BUYLINK to ebook or discount paper:  http://bit.ly/HeroNoah

 

Monday 4/23 ~ Bossing God around

The scripture for today, April 23 (4/23)/, is Mark 4:23 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

00-Cover-Thumbnail“If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.”

Some of us read a passage in the Bible and say, “I know it says that, but it doesn’t mean that.”  We just don’t want to hear it.

It’s hard to admit we are wrong, isn’t it? It’s human nature. And in the realm of religion, it is even harder because we’re talking about our eternal soul. So reading that we’re supposed to be doing or not doing something that we’ve never followed before is like being on a bridge over a roaring river, and suddenly realizing the bridge is breaking and we are not as safe as we thought we were.  Let us take our human egos out of the way.

Let’s say, for example, you have a wood or cooking project. If you leave a major step out, it results in your creation not turning out right. You might turn a blind eye to the correct way, give up and throw your creation away so that you never have the joy of whatever you were creating. Or you may go back and check what you have done until you find your mistake, are glad you found the mistake, see it with seeing eyes, correct it, and then have the joy of your creation.

Let us not fight God like spiritual teenagers trying to boss their parents. We are God’s creation. He is just trying to help us. Instead of spiritual blindness and deafness, let us have eyes that truly see, and ears that truly hear the Word of God.

 

Sunday 4/22 ~ So much of filling an empty soul

The scripture for today, April 22, is Proverbs 4:22 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

365 Dat by Date-Front-Thumbnail“…for they [my words] are life to those who find them and health to a man’s whole body.”

Nearly everyone with a Bible picks it up at some time or another and reads something out of it. But random reading is like picking up a novel and randomly reading a few passages now and then. The passage itself may be beautiful but does not have a lot of meaning without knowing what came before and after that passage in the novel.

Why not read the entire Bible, beginning to end? Perhaps you can read a chapter a day. Or, if you want to read it through in a year, you can count the total number of pages in your Bible, divide by 365, and read that number of pages each day. If you have time, why not sit down and read it in just a few sittings? This way you will know all the things that occurred before and after your favorite scriptures. Then they will take on new meaning for your life.

For help with how the Bible is organized, go here:  http://www.churchofchrist-cg-az.com/files/BibleOrganization4.htm

Proverbs even says God’s Word adds to your health. Do you suffer from any physical problems caused by anxiety? A lot of physical problems are. This is yet another reason to know the Word of God.

So much comfort. So much information. So much of answering our questions of how and why.  So much of filling an empty soul.

A Letter from Death Row

REBELLION

(Editor’s Note: Ricky was raised in the pews of the church of Christ. His parents were Godly people and worked hard to raise their children in the nurture and the admonition of the Lord [Eph 6:4] Ricky himself obeying the gospel as a young man and participated in the Lord’s church. However, Ricky fell into sin and found himself on death row at the Texas State Prison in Huntsville, Texas.

After eleven years on death row, Ricky was executed. He took responsibility for his actions and asked God for forgiveness. He wrote an open letter about his rebellion and subsequent repentance. This is that letter.)

Dear brothers and sisters,

I hope I may have a moment of your time. I am writing to you from prison, yes prison. In a way I hope to reach out in the way that Paul did while he was in prison, by letters. But I have a different reason for my letter, yet it is for the same purpose that Paul had, to help you live according to the gospel of Jesus Christ.

First, stop and think what it is that may or may not cause one of us to end up in prison. It is the same thing that can cause us to end up in HELL. What is that? SIN !!!

And one of the sins I want to speak about here today is: “REBELLION”

Rebellion is what most of us don’t think about very much. Like not listening to our parents when they tell us something. Like not listening to God when He tells us something. Like not listening to Governing authorities. And one of the greatest and easiest things that cause this rebellion is your friends. Yes, your friends will try to get you to do something, and if you say “no’, often they will say; “come on, are you scared?”, or they’ll call you “chicken”. Then most people will jump right in and do whatever it is, for most people don’t like to be looked at like that by their friends.

Or, you may only be running around with a crowd, and they do things that are not right. But consider this, if people see what they are like, and know that you run around with them, whether you partake of the things they do or not, people will think you are just as bad as they are. some say; “birds of a feather flock together”. If you don’t pick your friends, like some pick tomatoes, you may pick a bad one. And take it from me, someone who has been there, that can cost you more than I think you are willing to pay. I know what I am talking about, for all I have said so far, landed me on death row.

ARE YOU LISTENING TO ME ?????

Wild women, drugs, and fast living, was the road I took and look where it got me. Don’t think it cannot happen to you, for if you find yourself on any of these roads, you will sooner or later run into a situation that may hurt not only you, but your loved ones as well. And when you say, “Oh, I know what I am doing,” believe me, I said the very same thing, and see where I am.

I obeyed the gospel many many years ago and fell away, and now I have come home to the Lord again. I feel the Lord allowed me to end up here to wake me up from the sinful life I was living, for who knows, had I not ended up in here, I might still be living that fast life. When I obeyed the gospel, I was told through God’s word what to do, and I fell away. Jonah was told what to do also, but he didn’t do it, and ended up in the belly of a whale. If you have heard or read the story you know that he repented, and God had the whale spit him out on the beach. Now, I am not saying I will be spit out of this cement whale I call it, or that I will be digested in it, or will I live out my life to old age in here.

But, PLEASE HEAR ME, clean up your life if you are in the wrong way of life. In the back of your mind you know who you are and the life you live. And if you say to yourself, like I said many times; “I know what I am doing”, the TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF CRIMINAL JUSTICE, better known as TDC; has a number for you. Mine is 000893. I am only one of 340 some odd people on death row here in Texas. And if you run with the wrong people YOU could get the death penalty. For example; say you are riding around with a friend, and you pull into a gas station. Your friend goes in to pay for the gas and robs and kills the gas station attendant. You are only sitting in the car, but under Texas Law, a District Attorney can get a jury to give YOU a death sentence as well as the guy that did the killing. And Texas will execute people like that as if they were the one who did the crime. Do you think you can say; “I know what I am doing” NOW???

It is my prayer that you will stop and think about your life, young and old, for we are all under a law, God’s law. If we obey the Lord, then we can have eternal life, even if life on earth throws us a curve, like it did me. But I was able to repent of my sins, but I also could have been dead before I had a chance to repent, and I know without a doubt, had I done so I would be bound for Hell. But I did repent, and have the chance to meet you in Heaven come Judgment Day. So please, let’s work for the goal together, OK?

Your brother in Christ Jesus,

 

Ricky Don Blackmon

(This letter was passed on by the Borger Church of Christ in Texas.)