« July 2017 »
S M T W T F S
1
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31
You are not logged in. Log in
Form of Sound Words (2 Tim 1:13)
Tuesday, February 7, 2006
Fond Farewell
Now Playing: It was an adventure while it lasted !!
This is my original web site, started in December 2003. Now, after only 26 months, I will be devoting my time to other compelling tasks.

To maintain continuity, I may update the side bar links on occasion, but no new postings.

Blessings to all who have read these entries and trust each can profit from the many other Christian sites full of rich spiritual blessings!

May the Lord Jesus Christ fill you with all joy and peace in believing!

-- Don

Posted by dondegr8 at 5:55 PM EST
Thursday, December 8, 2005
Site Update
Now Playing: Available Spiritual Resources
Topic: Administrative

Bible-based blogs are intended for spiritual blessing.

Please review previous posts (much of Christian ministry is timeless) or find good material from the links at the side of the page.

Christian web pages below are hyperlinked; you can just click on the title to read.

web address -> Bible Gems for the Week

web address -> Bible Gems Monthly Archive

web address -> Sound Words for Pilgrims

web address -> Guidance from God's Word

web address -> Answers to Life's Questions

 

web address -> Scripture Selections

web address -> Gospel Messages

web address -> Scripture Journal

web address -> Precious Promises

web address -> Weekly Bible Gems

 

web address -> Reading Exhortation Doctrine

web address -> Word of Truth Faithful Sayings

web address -> Lead me in a Plain Path

web address -> Form of Sound Words

web address -> Learning More of Him

 

web address -> Pattern of Good Works

web address -> Magnify the Lord

web address -> Choice Gleanings

web address -> Spurgeon Selections

 

web address -> Answers to Life’s Questions

web address -> Christian Hymns and History

web address -> Quotes from H.E. Hayhoe

web address -> Quotes from Christians

web address -> Topical Devotions


Posted by dondegr8 at 11:49 AM EST
Updated: Friday, January 2, 2009 7:44 PM EST
Thursday, March 10, 2005
Change
Topic: Administrative
Due to time constraints, there will be no new postings on this web page for the next few months.

Please read postings from the past year, or click on the links at the side bar.

Otherwise, you are welcome to read recent postings from any of my other Christian sites listed below.

The web pages below ARE hyperlinked; you can just click on the title:

web address -> Choice Gleanings
web address -> Spurgeon Selections
web address -> Streams in the Desert
web address -> Bible Gems
web address -> Scripture Journal
web address -> Pattern of Good Works
web address -> Topical Devotions
web address -> Bible Gem Archive


Posted by dondegr8 at 7:46 AM EST
Updated: Wednesday, March 30, 2005 12:26 PM EST
Friday, February 25, 2005
Personally Known
Now Playing: Are we expressing our deepest concerns to the Lord ?
"But unto Thee have I cried, O LORD; and in the morning shall my prayer precede Thee." (Psalm 88:13)

We have today as our Scripture the darkest, most mournful psalm in the Psalter. This psalm is unique in that it is the only psalm in which the outpouring to God of a burdened heart fails to bring relief or consolation.

Yet, as terrible as the despair of the psalmist is, he is not in utter despair. No one who utterly despairs will pray, for prayer is the proof of lingering hope. Even in the midst of despair, the psalmist recognizes that, should there be any hope, it will be found only in God (Psalm 88:1,2,9,13).

Have you ever felt alone? Have you ever felt abandoned, even by God? Have you ever felt you have been left to face the world and its trials all by yourself? If so, you can join the rest of us and the writer of this psalm. He felt he had been abandoned by God, that he was all alone. The psalmist was concerned that he was not getting through to God, that his prayers were not being heard. God appeared to be unmoved by his prayers.

With a trouble-filled soul, the psalmist was convinced that his "life draweth nigh unto the grave" and that he was numbered "with them that go down into the pit." He had been afflicted with waves of the wrath of God. Night and day he wept because of his affliction. He says, "But unto Thee have I cried, O LORD; and in the morning shall my prayer precede Thee" (Psalm 88:13). Day after day he arose before the dawn and began to pray before the sun was up. He was consistent in seeking the face of the Lord early in the morning. Still no resolution was given to his problem. No answer came from God.

Perhaps the psalmist felt that God did not know who he was. Perhaps he was just another face in the crowd, unknown to the Lord of heaven. Perhaps he was just too insignificant for God to take time to hear his prayer. All of these were a "perhaps" in his mind. None of them was true.

There is a small arctic seabird called the guillemot that lives on the rocky cliffs of northern coastal regions. These birds flock together by the thousands in comparatively small areas. Because of the extremely crowded conditions the females must lay their pear-shaped eggs side by side in a long row on a narrow ledge. All the eggs look alike, but the mother bird knows exactly which one is hers. If someone disturbs the eggs and moves one of them, the mother guillemot is able to find her egg among the thousands and return it to its original location. To the human eye the eggs appear as if they have been mass produced on an assembly line. To the guillemot, each egg is known personally, identified personally, and attended personally.

The Bible is clear that our heavenly Father is even more intimately acquainted with His own children than the mother guillemot is with her egg. He knows us, He knows us personally. He even knows the number of hairs on our heads. He can tell identical twins apart. He knows every thought and emotion we have, and He understands all the decisions we make. He gives personal attention to each of us in all our affairs from morning until night.

So great is our Lord's loving concern for our lives that Jesus told His disciples the Father knows when a single sparrow falls upon the ground. Since human beings are of much greater value than the fowls of the air, we can certainly be assured that He knows all about us. We are the object of His constant care and attention. We have not been abandoned by God, nor as His children will we ever be abandoned.

MORNING HYMN

Be not dismayed whate'er betide,

God will take care of you;

Beneath His wings of love abide

God will take care of you.

(selected from W. Kroll)

Posted by dondegr8 at 9:17 AM EST
Updated: Friday, April 1, 2005 9:53 AM EST
Tuesday, February 22, 2005
Our Majestic God
Now Playing: Are we reverent toward our Creator ?
Topic: Holiness
"And it came to pass on the third day in the morning that there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud upon the mount, and the voice of the trumpet exceeding loud; so that all the people that was in the camp trembled."
(Exodus 19:16)

The waning years of the 20th century will undoubtedly be remembered both as an era of mushrooming technology and vanishing virtue. As the world's scientific achievements increase, its moral discernment declines. Institutions once sacred are now scorned. Beliefs that our less sophisticated forefathers revered and respected are now relinquished and ridiculed. The last third of this century has spawned a noticeable decrease in reverence, and this tendency is nowhere more evident than in religion. Even the church has a grossly inadequate appreciation of who God is and how He should be revered.

In the third month after the exodus Israel entered the desert of Sinai and encamped at the foot of the great mountain. As God's representative, Moses was summoned to Mount Sinai. Here God revealed that He would make Israel a "peculiar treasure" unto Himself above all other people. They would be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation if they would but obey God's voice and keep His covenant. Moses returned to the people with this proposition and they all agreed.

In three days the covenant would be established, but the holiness of Almighty God is so awesome that much preparation would have to be made before the Israelites could enjoy His presence. Only the pure in heart can "see" God. Moses was to sanctify the people for two days. They were to wash their clothes, an outward sign of the fact that they were inwardly clean. This cleansing within must stem from a heartfelt repentance, deep contrition, and a sincere desire to live righteously before God. Such preparation each man had to make for himself. In addition, fences or barriers were to be set up in public preparation to meet God. To impress Israel with the awesome majesty of God and the reverence with which they should meet Him, the mountain was itself declared holy - off limits to everyone but Moses and Aaron. None could touch it or even approach it beyond the fences.

With the preparations made and the people standing by in silent awe, "It came to pass on the third day in the morning, that there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud upon the mount, and the voice of the trumpet exceeding loud; so that all the people that was in the camp trembled" (Exodus 19:16). The reverence for God that this event was designed to instill in Israel renders vain any attempt to describe adequately the scene.

The Holy One of Israel appeared in a thick cloud because His presence was awesome, too tremendous to be seen physically. Accompanying the clapping of thunder was the voice of the trumpet, exceedingly loud. So terrifying was the trumpet that the people in the camp below were dumbfounded. They stood in mute reverence to the holiness of Almighty God. The whole mountain quaked greatly, shaking from top to bottom, as the people stood in amazement.

The awfulness and terror of this event is even more remarkable when we consider that God was not descending to Mount Sinai as Israel's Judge. He was not about to pronounce a sentence of doom on them, but in love He was drawing them unto Himself through the Sinai covenant. The smoke, fire, cloud, trumpet, lightning, and thunder were all to bring Israel to revere Him, for He is holy and almighty. He is of incredible majesty.

Although it is the duty of the Christian to praise God, it is our first duty to revere and fear Him. He alone is worthy of all reverence. "Wherefore receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear; For our God is a consuming fire" (Hebrews 12:28-29). Let's revere the Lord today and spend some time praising Him for who He is.

MORNING HYMN

Praise ye the Lord, the Almighty,

The King of creation!

O my soul praise Him,

For He is thy health and salvation!

All ye who hear,

Now to His temple draw near;

Join me in glad adoration!

(selected from W. Kroll)

Posted by dondegr8 at 9:39 AM EST
Updated: Friday, April 1, 2005 9:58 AM EST
Thursday, February 17, 2005
Reaction or Response
Now Playing: What do we do when we are mistreated by someone ?
Topic: Suffering
"And straightway in the morning the chief priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole council, and bound Jesus, and carried Him away, and delivered Him to Pilate." (Mark 15:1)

A converted Hindu woman had suffered much at the hands of her unsaved relatives. One day a missionary asked her, "When your husband is angry and persecutes you, what do you do?" The Hindu woman replied, "I just cook the food better and sweep the floor a little cleaner. When he speaks unkindly, I answer him mildly, trying to show him in every way that when I became a Christian, I also became a better wife." Although that husband had resisted all the efforts of the missionaries, he could not resist the sweet silence of his Christian wife. The Holy Spirit used her to win him to Christ.

How do you react when you meet antagonism? When you are mistreated or wrongly accused, do you harbor resentment or seek revenge? Do you attempt to retaliate or verbally abuse those who have abused you?

Jesus had been led away to the high priest. His agony in the garden had been interrupted by His betrayal. To make matters worse, His primary disciple, the Apostle Peter, had denied Him three times. Our Lord had endured both physical and verbal abuse all night long. "And straightway in the morning the chief priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole council, and bound Jesus, and carried Him away, and delivered Him to Pilate" (Mark 15:1). As the Sanhedrin gathered early on the morning of Jesus' crucifixion, they attempted to make the trial official. Yet their single purpose was "to put Him to death" (Matthew 27:1).

Jesus was falsely arraigned, falsely accused, and falsely abused. Yet to all of the trumped-up charges, to all of this pseudo evidence, our Lord made no reply. When the chief priests continued to accuse Him falsely of many things, Mark records that the Lord Jesus answered nothing. So uncharacteristic was it for a person falsely accused not to rise to His own defense that Pilate asked in astonishment, "Answerest Thou nothing?" But the narrative repeats, "Jesus yet answered nothing." It was nothing short of remarkable that Jesus would not retaliate or lash out against those who had treated Him so cruelly and unjustly.

A young sergeant was serving the British army in Egypt under the Highland Regiment. This soldier was an effervescent and shining Christian. When he was asked how he came to know the Lord Jesus as Savior, he recounted his conversion by saying, "There is a private in this company who was converted in Malta before the regiment came to Egypt. We gave that fellow an awful time. On one terrible night he came in very tired and wet. But before getting into bed, he knelt down to pray. My boots were soaked with water and covered with mud, and I let him have it with one on the side of his head, and I struck him with the second on the other side. But he just went on praying. The next morning I found those boots beautifully polished and standing by the side of my bed. That was his reply to me, and it just broke my heart. I was saved that day."

Our response to those who lie against us must never be to lash out against them. As we arise early in the morning, perhaps after a day in which our character has been slandered and our conduct has been slashed, we must arise with a commitment to live a life like the Lord Jesus who, when He was reviled, reviled not again. Only then will we live happily in a world filled with unhappy people.

MORNING HYMN

Bearing shame and scoffing rude,

In my place condemned He stood-

Sealed my pardon with His blood:

Hallelujah, what a Saviour!

(selected from W. Kroll)

Posted by dondegr8 at 3:52 PM EST
Updated: Friday, April 1, 2005 9:55 AM EST
Tuesday, February 15, 2005
Waiting on God
Now Playing: Are we willing to wait until God shows us ?
Topic: Guidance
"And in the morning came the word of the LORD unto me." (Ezekiel 12:8)

Have you ever watched a group of demonstrators carrying placards to call attention to their cause? Perhaps you have participated in a walk-a-thon to raise funds for a charity. Frequently people must do extraordinary things to gain publicity or call attention to their particular beliefs. There is a prophet in the Old Testament who did exactly the same thing at the direct command of God. His name was Ezekiel.

A contemporary of Jeremiah and Dariel, Ezekiel was a priest (Ezekiel 1:3), but never served as such because he was taken captive to Babylon during the reign of Jehoiachin (2 Kings 24:10-16). Ezekiel settled with a group of exiles at Tel-Abib, a town in the interior part of Babylonia on the river Chebar. Five years after he arrived in Babylonia, when he was about thirty years of age, Ezekiel received a call from Jehovah to prophesy to the people of the captivity.

Prophesying during the darkest days of the captivity, Ezekiel was met only with indifference and despondency among the people. The captive Jews would not listen to his message. Therefore God instructed Ezekiel to resort to a more dramatic method of proclaiming the destruction of Jerusalem. Instead of preaching or speaking in parables, he would act out the parable. Ezekiel would dramatize what God was about to do with His great city Jerusalem.

God reminded Ezekiel that he lived in a rebellious house amid a rebellious nation and that he should prepare to move out of that house. In order to be a visual representation of the captivity of Jerusalem, God commanded Ezekiel to "dig thou through the wall in their sight, and carry out thereby." So, packing his bags, Ezekiel proceeded to gouge out a hole in the mud wall of his house, making an opening onto the street through which he would pass with his baggage. There he would wait.

"And in the morning came the word of the LORD unto me" (Ezekiel 12:8). Having waited all night, Ezekiel now gave an explanation to the Israelites for his rather unusual actions. Five times in this chapter the word of the Lord came unto him; five times he had to wait on the word of the Lord. True, waiting in the comfort and privacy of his house would not have been as difficult as waiting on the sidewalk while everyone passed by, but waiting on God is never easy.

Sometimes the purposes and messages of God are revealed slowly. His grand designs can never be hurried. The great New England preacher Phillips Brooks was a man of great poise and quiet manner. Yet at times he suffered from moments of frustration when he had to wait on God. One day a friend saw him feverishly pacing the floor like a caged animal.

"What's the trouble, Mr. Brooks?" he asked.

"The trouble is that I am in a hurry, but God isn't!"

We can imagine that having clawed through the wall with bags in hand and waiting on the sidewalk for God to speak to him again was difficult for Ezekiel. Nonetheless, after God initially spoke to him, it was not until the morning that God came to him the second time. Ezekiel did as God commanded him without need for explanation. But then, in full view of everyone on the street, he must patiently wait on the Lord to speak to him again.

You and I must recognize that God leads us every step of the way, whether we understand His leading or not. To hear God say "Go" or to hear Him say "Stay" is usually easier than to hear Him say "Wait"! In potential ridicule, the prophet of God waited all night to hear the Lord God give him further instructions. How long are we willing to wait on God? Do we trust Him enough to wait on Him today?

MORNING HYMN

Not ours to know the reason why

Unanswered is our prayer, But ours to

trust God's wisdom still

And to His love repair.

(selected from W. Kroll)

Posted by dondegr8 at 6:32 AM EST
Updated: Friday, April 1, 2005 9:55 AM EST
Sunday, February 13, 2005
God's Timetable
Now Playing: Are we looking to the Lord for His direction or just pushing our own ?
Topic: Guidance
"And they rose up early in the morning, and gat them up into the top of the mountain, saying, Lo, we be here, and will go up unto the place which the LORD hath promised: for we have sinned." (Numbers 14:40)

If the child of God is to obey the will of God, he must keep his eye on the timetable of God. Israel had been miraculously delivered from Egyptian bondage by the evident power of God. Two months later the Israelites camped at the foot of Mount Sinai where Moses received the law of God. Here they remained nearly a year until God commanded them to move on to Kadesh-Barnea. Everything was right on God's schedule.

God had led His people each step of the way. But before He would lead them into the promised land, this luscious countryside had to be explored. For this task the twelve heads of their respective tribes were chosen. Their names are given at length but only two of them are memorable: Joshua the son of Nun, and Caleb the son of Jephunneh.

The twelve spies spent forty days on their intelligence gathering foray. Sure enough, the land was all that the Lord had promised. It was truly a land that "floweth with milk and honey." In fact, the grapes which they brought back were so robust that a cluster of them had to be borne on a staff supported on the shoulders of two men.

But the news was not all good. Ten of the returning spies reported that the people dwelt in very great, walled cities: the Amalekites in the south; the Hittites, Jebusites, and Amorites in the mountains; and the Canaanites by the sea. But more than this, the giant sons of Anak dwelt there, before whom the spies felt as grasshoppers. In spite of the encouragement by Joshua and Caleb in the minority report, the people broke into open rebellion. God was leading them into the land, but they were afraid and would not follow His leading.

The disobedience of Israel evoked the wrath of God. All Israelites twenty years of age and older were banned from ever dwelling in the land they had refused to enter. Instead, God declared they would wander in the wilderness for forty years, one year for each day the spies were in the land, and would die during that wandering. Only Joshua and Caleb were permitted to settle in the promised land, for they alone were ready to move on God's command and according to His timetable.

When the people learned of God's sentence on their disobedience, they were not at all penitent. Instead, they resolved to atone for their sin by belatedly storming the promised land. But delayed obedience is the brother of disobedience. "And they rose up early in the morning" in preparation for their ill-fated campaign (Numbers 14:40). In spite of Moses' warning, the people marched against the Amalekites and Canaanites. What they would not do with God's help, they now attempted to do without it. First they refused to enter the land because of their unbelief in the power of God. Then they attempted to enter that same land because of their unbelief in the severity of God's judgment. In their own strength and outside of God's timing, they were sure to fail. They did. The enemy defeated the Israelites with a great slaughter and drove them back as far as Hormah.

Each of us who knows God must learn from Israel's tragedy so that it is not similarly repeated in our lives. We dare not question divine leading. If that leading is to dwell at the foot of Sinai, as the Israelites did, we must learn to be content where we are. But regardless of adverse circumstances, if God tells us that it is time to act, we have no reasonable choice but to act. Whether remaining indefinitely or moving out immediately, we must learn to follow the accurate timetable of God. This can be done successfully only when we are sensitive to that still small voice of His Holy Spirit and are willing to obey it.

MORNING HYMN

It may not be on the mountain's height,

Or over the stormy sea;

It may not be at the battle's front

My Lord will have need of me;

But if by a still, small voice He calls

To paths I do not know,

I'll answer, dear Lord, with my hand in Thine

I'll go where you want me to go.

(selected from W. Kroll)

Posted by dondegr8 at 5:13 PM EST
Updated: Friday, April 1, 2005 9:56 AM EST
Wednesday, February 9, 2005
Bird with the Broken Wing
Now Playing: Have our wings been mended by the Saviour ?
Topic: Stories

A century ago Peter Bilhorn, an American evangelist and singer, was mightily used of God in his country. About the year 1900 he received from a friend a clipping from the Youth's Companion, containing the poem, "The Bird with the Broken Wing," which was written by Hezekiah Butterworth.

The message of the poem, in brief, was that the wounded bird was the most tragic of sights; that it served mainly as a warning; that its powers of achievement were practically finished. "For the bird with the broken pinion Never soars as high again." Peter's friend suggested that here was something worth setting to music, and, after some effort, the singer prepared a musical score for the words, and placed it in his portfolio. Some weeks later, Bilhorn was invited to conduct a gospel meeting in the Iowa State Prison at Fort Madison. Just before the close of the meeting the chaplain said, "Sing us one more song, Peter," and, without thinking where he was, or how it would sound, the missionary picked up the sheet of the new song, seated himself at the organ, and sang it to the prisoners. When he had finished, a strange thing happened.

A convict, a young man down in the center, sprang to his feet, and, holding on to the seat in front of him, said: "Chaplain, Chaplain, is that true? If what he has been singing is true, there is no hope for me or a lot of us here." And he dropped back into his seat with a sob. Mr. Bilhorn at once realized the dreadful blunder which he had made, but it was too late to explain or apologize. "And for this cause we also give thanks to God unceasingly that, having received the word of the report of God by us, ye accepted, not men's word, but, even as it is truly, God's word, which also works in you who believe" (1 Thess.2:13).

 Peter Bilhorn went back to Chicago saying: "It's not true. There must be another verse added to that song." A few days later he wrote: But the soul that comes to Jesus Is saved from every sin And the heart that fully trusts Him Shall a crown of glory win. Then come to the dear Redeemer He will cleanse you from every stain; By the grace that He freely gives you, You shall higher soar again. Then he sat down and wrote to the chaplain asking for the privilege of a return visit to the prison for another service.

Three weeks later he was there. During the service he made his apology, and sang the song with the new verse added. But that is not the end of the story. In May, 1918, nearly twenty years afterwards, Mr. Bilhorn was at a camp m Illinois, singing for the Y.M.C.A. On a Sunday morning, at the close of a meeting in the Tabernacle, a tall, splendid-looking officer in a colonel's uniform came down the aisle to the platform, put out his hand, and said, "Hello, Bilhorn. You don¹t remember me, but I do you. You visited Fort Medicine prison eighteen years ago, and sang about The Bird with the Broken Wing." "Yes," said Peter, "and every time I think of it I am filled with shame."

"Well" said the colonel, "I am the man who asked if the song was true; and when you came back weeks later and gave your testimony, and then sang the new verse, I gave my heart to Jesus Christ. I was able to rise. I am now the colonel of a regiment of infantry preparing to go overseas. By God¹s grace one can higher soar again." (selected) Site Meter


Posted by dondegr8 at 2:54 PM EST
Updated: Saturday, November 11, 2006 3:40 PM EST
Wednesday, January 19, 2005
I found Jesus there
Now Playing: Has Jesus found a home in your heart ?
Topic: Stories
The Heart

"Tomorrow morning," the surgeon began,
"I'll open up your heart..."

"You'll find Jesus there," the boy interrupted.

The surgeon looked up, annoyed "I'll cut your heart open," he continued, to see how much damage has been done..."

"But when you open up my heart, you'll find Jesus in there," said the boy.

The surgeon looked to the parents, who sat quietly. "When I see how much damage has been done, I'll sew your heart and chest back up, and I'll plan what to do next."

"But you'll find Jesus in my heart. The Bible says He lives there. The hymns all say He lives there. You'll find Him in my heart."

The surgeon had had enough. "I'll tell you what I'll find in your heart. I'll find damaged muscle, low blood supply, and weakened vessels. And I'll find out if I can make you well."

"You'll find Jesus there too. He lives there."

The surgeon left.

The surgeon sat in his office, recording his notes from the surgery, "...damaged aorta, damaged pulmonary vein, widespread muscle degeneration. No hope for transplant, no hope for cure. Therapy: painkillers and bed rest. Prognosis:," here he paused, "death within one year."

He stopped the recorder, but there was more to be said. "Why?" he asked aloud. "Why did You do this? You've put him here; You've put him in this pain; and You've cursed him to an early death. Why?"

The Lord answered and said, "The boy, My lamb, was not meant for your flock for long, for he is a part of My flock, and will forever be.

Here, in My flock, he will feel no pain, and will be comforted as you cannot imagine. His parents will one day join him here, and they will know peace, and My flock will continue to grow."

The surgeon's tears were hot, but his anger was hotter. "You created that boy, and You created that heart. He'll be dead in months. Why?"

The Lord answered, "The boy, My lamb, shall return to My flock, for He has done his duty: I did not put My lamb with your flock to lose him, but to retrieve another lost lamb."

The surgeon wept. The surgeon sat beside the boy's bed; the boy's parents sat across from him. The boy awoke and whispered, "Did you cut open my heart?"

"Yes," said the surgeon.

"What did you find?" asked the boy.

"I found Jesus there," said the
surgeon.

Author Unknown

Posted by dondegr8 at 11:16 AM EST
Friday, January 7, 2005
Presence of Holiness
Now Playing: Are we reverent in His presence & toward Him ?
Topic: Holiness
"Above [the throne] stood seraphim; each one had six wings: with two he covered his face, with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one cried to another and said: Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory!" (Isaiah 6:2-3)

In the Presence of Holiness

Dr. Bob Cook, president of the former King's College, New York, once mentioned that he had been at a gathering in Washington. While there he spoke with then-Vice President George Bush. Two hours later he chatted briefly with President Ronald Reagan. Smiling broadly, Dr. Cook added, "But that's nothing! Today I talked to God!"

Every Christian has the privilege of entering into the presence of God and speaking to the Sovereign Ruler of the universe. When we bow in prayer, the portals of heaven open and we have access to Him who sits on heaven's throne.

Isaiah's vision gives us some idea of what God's throne room must be like. It is a place permeated with the holiness of God. The seraphim standing above the throne cry out, "Holy, holy, holy." This thrice-repeated exclamation serves to emphasize the depths to which God's holiness exists. When we come before our Creator, we enter the intimate presence of a Holy God.

Is that how you approach God in prayer? Do you do so with the same sense of awe these seraphim have? They cover their face because God is too awesome and splendid to look upon. Even the highest of the angelic orders cover their feet before God in a gesture of humility. We must come into His presence with that same reverence. But like the seraphim, wings ready to fly at His command, you and I should also be prepared to proclaim His glory throughout the world. We come before Him with a sense of reverence, awe and obedience to serve. When we bow with these attitudes, we rise as more than conquerors (Rom. 8:37).

Holy praying requires a wholly prepared pray-er.

(selected from W. Kroll)

Posted by dondegr8 at 8:26 AM EST
Updated: Friday, April 1, 2005 10:25 AM EST
Friday, December 17, 2004
Encouragement
Now Playing: Look around, you may be discouraged; Look above, you will be enouraged !
Topic: Motivate

"The Lord was also angry with me [Moses] for your sakes, saying, 'Even you shall not go in there; but Joshua the son of Nun, who stands before you, he shall go in there. Encourage him, for he shall cause Israel to inherit it'." (Deuteronomy 1:37-38)

The Value of Encouragement

Francois Arago, a 19th-century French astronomer, attributed his success to words he found written on the paper cover of his book at a time when he was greatly discouraged. These words, written by French mathematician and philosopher Jean d'Alembert, were, "Go on, sir; go on! The difficulties you meet will resolve themselves as you advance. Proceed, and light will dawn and shine with increased clearness on your path." Following these simple words made Arago the first astronomical mathematician of his age.

God knew that Joshua would need encouraging words as well. Moses had become so discouraged with the grumbling people that he himself sinned against the Lord and lost his opportunity to enter the Promised Land (Num. 20:8-20). Therefore, God instructed Moses to challenge all the people to encourage his young understudy. If Joshua were to fulfill his mission, the monumental task of leading Israel into the land of Canaan, the people needed to support him with their encouragement.

You and I are much the same. We need encouragement, too, whether we're a leader or a follower. George M. Adams observed that "encouragement is oxygen to the soul." If we plan to go on living, we need oxygen; if we plan to go on serving the Lord, we need encouragement.

Do you have the gift of encouragement? Whom can you comfort today? What simple word can you say that will go a long way in motivating your friends or family? Make it your ministry to lift the spirits of those around you so that they can serve the Lord more effectively.

If you want to be encouraged, encourage someone else.

(selected from W. Kroll)

Posted by dondegr8 at 12:01 PM EST
Updated: Friday, April 1, 2005 9:59 AM EST
Thursday, December 2, 2004
With God
Now Playing: Is what we do each day done With GOD ?
Topic: Motivate
With God

To talk with God no breath is lost; -- Talk on!
To walk with God no strength is lost; -- Walk on!
To toil with God no time is lost; -- Toil on!

Little is much, if God is in it;
Man's busiest day not worth God's minute.

Much is little every where,
If God the business doth not share.

So, work with God, --then nothing's lost;
Who works with Him does well and most.

Old English verse


Posted by dondegr8 at 11:57 AM EST
Tuesday, November 16, 2004
Spiritual One-liners
Now Playing: Consider deeply the following ...
Topic: Quotes
26 Beautiful One-liners

1. Give God what's right -- not what's left.
2. Man's way leads to a hopeless end -- God's way leads to an endless hope.
3. A lot of kneeling will keep you in good standing.
4. He who kneels before God can stand before anyone.
5. In the sentence of life, the devil may be a comma--but never let him be the period.
6. Don't put a question mark where God puts a period.
7. Are you wrinkled with burden? Come to the church for a face-lift.
8. When praying, don't give God instructions - just report for duty.
9. Don't wait for six strong men to take you to church.
10. We don't change God's message -- His message changes us.
11. The church is prayer-conditioned.
12. When God ordains, He sustains.
13. WARNING: Exposure to the Son may prevent burning.
14. Plan ahead -- It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark.
15. Most people want to serve God! But only in an advisory position.
16. Suffering from truth decay? Brush up on your Bible.
17. Exercise daily -- walk with the Lord.
18. Never give the devil a ride -- he will always want to drive.
19. Nothing else ruins the truth like stretching it.
20. Compassion is difficult to give away because it keeps coming back.
21. He who angers you controls you.
22. Worry is the darkroom in which negatives can develop.
23. Give Satan an inch & he'll be a ruler.
24. Be ye fishers of men -- you catch them & He'll clean them.
25. God doesn't call the qualified, He qualifies the called...
26. Read the Bible -- It will scare the h--- out of you.

(from Selections by R.K.G.)

Posted by dondegr8 at 12:18 PM EST
Updated: Wednesday, December 15, 2004 2:39 PM EST
Friday, November 12, 2004
Who's got your tongue ?
Now Playing: Do we guard what comes from our lips ?
Topic: Meditations
(from Selections by R.K.G.)

Last week, during the "Come Apart" at Camp Sacajawea, I had occasion to go to Vineland to a laundromat. There was a tract rack on the wall, maintained by the Vineland Mennonite Church. I picked up and read the following, which brought back memories of visits in our home of my maternal grandfather, Christopher Knapp, as he travelled in the service of the Lord. I can still hear his voice from upstairs admonishing us boys about idle words for which we must give account.

I thought of the following prayer of the Psalmist:
"Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer." (Psalm 19)

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&


Look before you leap. Think before you speak.

Good advice? Sure! Who of us hasn't been embarrassed when he said something without thinking? We didn't mean to say it. It just somehow slipped out too fast.

Our computer age is an era of fast moving, fast living, and fast talking. If you don't believe it, just stand in the marketplace or on the street corner sometime.

You can hear just about any kind of talk---a heated argument, cursing, swearing, the latest obscene joke, or you name it.

Such speech has no place on the lips of the follower of Jesus Christ, you say. You're right! But what about the speech of those of us who wouldn't be heard relating obscenities, swearing, cursing, or directing bitter slander at the next-door neighbor?

Is our speech always clear of all impurities, or do we let the rush of our age control our tongues? Have you taken stock lately of the "products" which come from your own tongue?

Sometimes the rush to "get your piece said" may cause you to slip up and say some things you shouldn't. One of the greatest dangers the Christian faces in using his tongue is the use of exclamations when excited.

You've probably overheard someone oohing and ahing over that shiny new car or that gorgeous new house and saying, "Golly, what a beauty." Or maybe you've overehard , "O Darn, I did it again" after someone hit his finger with a hammer.

Perhaps in the conversation over the back fence, you've heard, "My goodness, wasn't that an awful thunderstorm."

What's wrong with those words? Plenty! They are
"polite" words for things that are not so "polite" to say. Maybe you wouldn't think of using God's or Jesus' name just any old time. Yet Golly, Gol and Gad are used for "God", Gee and Geez for "Jesus".

You would never want to curse someone, asking God to send him to the lake of fire. Yet, you might use darn, durn or durnit. They mean "damn".

What about such seemingly innocent expressions as my goodness and goodness gracious? These are still irreverent uses of God's name. "My goodness" takes the place of "My God," and "goodness gracious" is a substitute for "God's grace."

God has warned man in His Word, the Bible, about the loose use of His name---just kicking it around in everyday conversation or using it to condemn someone.

"Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh His name in vain" (Exodus 20.7)

God commands us not to use His name unless we use it with respect and honor towards Him. Such expression as "I'll swear", "By God", and "By Jove" (a Roman God) are out of the question for the Christian in light of this commandment.

Much like this Old Testament commandment is the New Testament command: "Swear not at all, neither by heaven, for it is God's throne: Nor by the earth; for it is His footstool; neither by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the Great King. Neither shalt thou swear by thy head, because thou canst make one hair white or black. But let your communication be, Yea, yea, Nay, nay; for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil" (Matthew 5.34-37).

These verses rule out using God's name to try to make someone believe that you're telling the truth.

For heaven's sake, my heavens, my stars---swearing by heaven? My lands---swearing by the earth? Pleasing to God? Hardly.

By now, you may be asking, "What can I say if I'm surprised or excited? Many of the usual expressions are not fitting for a Christian."

Your first concern in all that you say must be to bring glory to God. "And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by Him" (Colossians 3.17).

Much of the time which people waste exclaiming over or complaining about the weather, the latest tragedy, or the beauty of some object, could be used more wisely praising God for all things..

Instead of exclaiming over and blaming God for the destructive storm, praise God for sparing your life, realizing that "all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose" (Romans 8.29).

It would be a good idea to "take stock" of the situations that cause you to use exclamations. Find out why you're exclaiming. Is it to impress someone? To fake interest when you couldn't care less? Be sure your exclamations are genuine---that you express the joy or concern that you really mean.

The things you say reveal your life desires and true motives.

"For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things, and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things" (Matthew 12.34b-35).

Someday all men will have to answer to God for the things they have spoken from the "abundance of the heart." In that day, excuses will not stand. "Well, I didn't really realize what I was saying" or "I just said it without thinking" will do no good.

"For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned" (Matthew 12.37).

The things your mouth speaks are really determined by who controls your tongue. The good man's tongue is a God-controlled tongue---the evil man's tongue is a Satan-controlled tongue.

God desires to control your tongue. Without Him, a man's tongue is like a wind-whipped forest fire. "The tongue is a fire; a world of iniquity . . . and it is set on fire of hell" (James 3.6).

"The tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison" (James 3.8). Only Jesus Christ can tame that unruly tongue. How? Only as you yield your life to Him in obedience to His word.---IN CHRIST your speech habits will be changed. How?

"Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. . . . Mortify [make dead] therefore your members which are upon the earth; . . . put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy [swearing and cursing], filthy communication out of your mouth." (Colossians 3.2, 3, 5a, 8).

Christ will take a crucified tongue, one that is surrendered to Him for His use, and will make it "alive" with good conversation that will bring praise to God.

Who's got your tongue?

(Selected by R.K.G.)

Available in tract form from Gospel Light Publications, Harrisonburg VA 22802
Phone (540) 434-0758


Posted by dondegr8 at 12:59 PM EST
Updated: Sunday, February 13, 2005 5:07 PM EST

Newer | Latest | Older