Monday 5/14 ~ Perfect love

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

0-BK 7-ShadowOfDeath-Cover-new-Thumbnail“For Christ’s love compels us….”

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

Jesus died both physically and spiritually in our place! (Remember when he said God had forsaken him?) He knew we couldn’t come back from either kind of death on our own, so he did it for us. Such terrible things he went through for us!

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

How powerful is your love for Christ? Do you share the love of Christ with others? 1st John 4:18 says, “Perfect love casts out fear.”

You must 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 from happening to them. If not in person, tell them in a note, a phone call, email, even a song. There are ways. Reach out. You can and you will if you let Christ’s love compel you.

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Thursday 4/12 ~ Fast-food prayers

The scripture for today, April 12, is Colossians 4:12 as found in the New Testament of the Bible:

0-Bk3-HeartsAfire-COVER-Kindle.thumbnail-new“He is always wrestling in prayer for you.”

Do you have fast-food prayers? Drive in, ask for something for yourself, and drive out two minutes later?

How about trying gourmet prayers ~ where you gather many ingredients, not just one? They take longer but are very special and rewarding.

Your menu is your prayer list. People on your list don’t even have to be people you know personally. They can be from the newspaper, teachers at a local school, government officials, your neighbors, your congregation. List people by name. Pray for them by name.

Then tell these people you are praying for them. You may think you’ll get some strange looks, but mostly, even from the unreligious, you will get a smile and a whispered thank you. Some will actually reply, “No one before has ever told me they were praying for me.” After a while, you will begin receiving word from some of them, “I am praying for you too.”

Prayer is wonderful. It is most wonderful when it centers, not on yourself, but on struggling in prayer for others.

One by one you will begin seeing amazing answers in the lives of those you pray for. And that’s a promise!

Tuesday 3/27 ~ What if God…

The scripture for today, March 27 (3/27), is Proverbs 3:27f as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

000-COVER-KINDLE-Thumbnail“Do not withhold good from those who deserve it, when it is in your power to act. Do not say to your neighbor, ‘Come back later; I’ll give it tomorrow’ ~ when you now have it with you.”

Christians generally are good people. They stay out of trouble at work and in the neighborhood. They obey the laws. They don’t use profanity, they don’t lie, they don’t cheat, they don’t steal, they don’t commit adultery, they don’t murder. These are bad things Christians don’t do ~ sins of commission.

But what about good things Christians do not do? Too busy to stop and look around you for someone needing help? Too busy to drive someone to the doctor, or watch a child when a parent is sick, or fix a meal when a family is bereaved, or send a card for someone’s birthday, or call someone who is lonely? Too shy to say something to someone in distress? Too afraid to bring up heaven and hell to a lost one? These are sins! Sins of omission and they are just as serious.

Today, look around you. Who needs you? Not needs your neighbor, or a relative, or someone else at work, or one of the other members of your congregation, but you? You! When do they need you? Not tomorrow or next month or next year, but today!

Get out of your comfort zone. Quit committing sins of omission. Make a point to do something for someone else. When? Today. Too busy?  What if God made as much time for you and you do for others?

Scripture for Saturday, July 29 (7/29)

The scripture for today, July 29 (7/29), is Ecclesiastes 7:29 as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:

0-CHILD'SCartoonMetJesusCOVER-Medium“This only have I found: God made mankind upright, but men have gone in search of many schemes.”

We begin our lives upright ~ sinless. But as we grow out of innocent childhood, we begin to want recognition, power, money, beauty. And we tend to scheme to get them.

True, God does not want to deprive us if we can obtain these things. But Solomon (who wrote this), with all his worldwide fame, power, wealth, and beauty, still felt empty. Actually, we can even read the Bible and go to worship and still feel empty. Why? Because we need to think of someone else besides ourselves. We need to add good works to our faith (James 2) ~ helping others with the same enthusiasm we pursue our own recognition, power, money, and beauty.

Sometimes to fill our emptiness, we need to just return to our early childhood when we saw life through innocent eyes. Through simple eyes. Through eyes that believe so easily in God, and so easily love everyone.

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Scripture for Saturday, June 10 (6/10)

The scripture for today, June 10 (6/10), is Proverbs 6:10f as found in the Old Testament of the Bible:00-cover-kindle-medium-new

“A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest ~ and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man.”

Oh! This scripture really comes to the point, doesn’t it? Perhaps during difficult economic times for some people, this can be a gentle reminder. If you can’t work for money, you can work for free. There is always work to do as a volunteer either in an organization or just by yourself. All it takes is for you to look around.

Well, if you’re already in the clutches of poverty, what will volunteering do to help the situation? People will notice you. They will notice your work ethic, and your cheerfulness, and your thoughtfulness. They just might tell people looking for someone to hire. And in the process, you are helping others. That in itself can make you feel rich ~ even if you’re not.

 

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