May 3, 2016
Christian Calendar, Reformation, Repentence, American Evangelicalism, Gospel, Church Stuff, Reading Recommendations, Sermon Teasers, Hart to Heart
by Robert Hart
Faith is not about everything turning out okay…
Faith is not about everything turning out okay…
Thank you for loving me…
When we come before God, we must remember two simple facts-
Who He is and who we are.
"The long, painful history of the world is for people to be tempted to choose prestige and power over love, being in charge over being led, being served over serving others."
(A dutch professor, writer, priest and theologian)
I thought this was a wonderful and encouraging word. Hope it is a blessing to all of you…
In reading this, just remember…we are not under law (Jesus said He was the fulfilment of the law). We under grace. So, if you are like me, and would like to imporve in some of these areas, here is a good prayer.
"Lord, I want to see these scriptural references in my life more and more. I delight in being totally dependent upon You, to see that accomplished in me. For your praise and glory, Amen.
In reply, Jesus said: "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he fell into the hands of robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, took him to an inn and took care of him. The next day, he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper. "Look after him," he said. 'And when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have." Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?' The expert in the law replied, "The one who had mercy on him." Jesus told him, "Go and do likewise."
A kind man benefits himself, but a cruel man brings trouble on himself. Proverbs 11:17
An anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kinid word cheers him up. Prov. 12:25
He who despises his neighbor sins, but blessed is he who is kind to the needy. Prov. 19:17
But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful, and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Luke 6:35-36
Love is patient, love is kind. I Corinthians 13:4
Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ, God forgave you. Eph. 4:32
Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Col. 3:12
What Jesus has done for us….
The First Holy Communion on the Moon….
Forty-five years ago two human beings changed history by walking on the surface of the moon. But what happened before Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong exited the Lunar Module is perhaps even more amazing, if only because so few people know about it. I'm talking about the fact that Buzz Aldrin took communion on the surface of the moon. Some months after his return, he wrote about it in Guideposts magazine.
The background of the story is that Aldrin was an elder at his Presbyterian Church in Texas during this period in his life and knowing he would soon be doing somthing unprecedented in human history, he felt he should mark the occasion somehow. He asked his minister to help him. And so the minister consecrated a communion wafer and a small vial of communion wine. Buzz Aldrin took them with him out of the Earth's orbit and on to the surface of the moon. He and Armstrong had only been on the lunar surface for a few minutes when Aldrin made the following public statement:
Just Prior to the Revolutionary period, from around 1730 to 1770, our nation saw a wonderful Christian revival known as the Great Awakening.
Benjamin Franklin recalled the effect of this massive spiritual resurgence in his autobiography:
"It was wonderful to see the change soon made in the manners of our inhabitants. From being thoughtless or indifferent about religion, it seemed as if all the world were growing religious, so that one could not walk through the town (Philadelphia) in an evening without hearing psalms sung in different families of every street."
On January 29, 1843… future president William McKinley, Jr. was born. His family were devout Methodists. At age 10, young William went forward in a revival meeting and gave his life to Christ. At age 16, he joined the Methodist Episcopal Church. When the Civil War began he joined the 23rd Ohio Volunteer Infantry Regiment. In contemplating the possibility that he could be killed in battle, McKinley wrote in his diary…
Henry the 8th's son, King Edward VI died at age 15 in 1553. He was a sincere, Protestant Christian. His cousin, Lady Jane Gray, an evangelical girl, also age 15,(against her wishes) ascended to the throne of England. She was deposed after nine days and was replaced by Mary Tudor, Edward's Roman Catholic half-sister. Mary had Jane Gray imprisoned and seven weeks later commanded Lady Jane to be executed.
The name comes from the Greek word biblia, plural of biblion, meaning "book". Going back even earlier, byblos meant "papyrus", the plant used in making the early form of paper. And one step farther back in time, Byblos was the name of an ancient city noted for exporting papyrus.
Thou hast formed us for Thyself…
And our hearts are restless till they find their rest in Thee.
St Augustine…425 A.D.
One day a teacher asked her students to list the names of the other students in the room on two sheets of paper, leaving a space between each name. Then she told them to think of the nicest thing they could say about each of their classmates and write it down. It took the remainder of the class period to finish their assignment, and as the students left the room, each one handed in the papers.
That Saturday, the teacher wrote down the name of each student on a separate sheet of paper, and listed what everyone else had said about that individual. On Monday, she gave each student his or her list. Before long, the entire class was smiling. "Really?" she heard whispered. "I never knew that I meant anything to anyone!" and "I didn't know others like me so much," were most of the comments.
No one ever mentioned those papers in class again. She never knew if they discussed them after class or with their parents, but it didn't matter. The exercise had accomplished its purpose. The students were happy with themselves and one another. That group of students moved on.
Several years later, one of the students was killed in Viet Nam and his teacher attended the funeral of that special student.
The church was packed with his friends. One by one those who loved him took a last walk by the coffin. The teacher was the last one to pass the coffin. As she stood there, one of the soldiers who acted as a pallbearer came up to her. "Were you Mark's math teacher?" he asked. She nodded: "Yes." Then he said, "Mark talked about you a lot."
After the funeral, most of Mark's former classmates went together to a luncheon. Mark's mother and father were there, obviously waiting to speak with his teacher.
"We want to show you something," his father said, taking a wallet out of his pocket. "They found this on Mark when he was killed. We thought you might recognize it."
Opening the billfold, the man carefully removed two worn pieces of notebook paper that had obviously be taped, folded and refolded many times. The teacher knew without looking, that the papers were the ones on which she had listed all the good things each of Mark's classmates had said about him.
"Thank you so much for doing that," Mark's mother said. "As you can see, Mark treasured it."
All of Mark's former classmates started to gather around. Charlie smiled rather sheepishly and said, "I still have my list. It's in the top drawer of my desk at home."
Chuck's wife said, "Chuck asked me to put his in our wedding album."
"I have mine too," Marilyn said. "It's in my diary."
Then Vicki, another classmate, reached into her purse, took out her wallet and showed her worn and frazzled list to the group. "I carry this with me at all time," Vicki said and without batting an eyelash, she continued: "I think we all saved our lists."
The density of people in society is so thick that we forget that life will end one day. And we don't know when that one day will be. Tell the people you love and care for, that they are special and important. Tell them, before it is too late.
The great preacher Charles Spurgeon gives us this vivid word picture:
"I have heard of some good old woman in a cottage, who had nothing but a piece of bread and a little water, and lifting up her hands, she said as a blessing, 'What! all this and Christ too?' "
I have started my day for years with these verses. Thought they might be a blessing to you as well…
"We do not pray because we doubt…
O Give Thanks unto the Lord;
For He is good; for His mercy endureth forever…
My 9-year-old's last-second request surprised his doctor and taught me a valuable lesson.
Last fall my 9-year-old son, Austin, had his tonsils removed. Before the surgery, Austin 's anesthesiologist came to start an IV. He was wearing a cool surgical cap covered in colorful frogs. Austin loved that "frog hat."
The doctor explained that he had two choices.
Trials…are not enemies of faith, but
Opportunities…to prove God's
MANY PEOPLE FIND THE HOLY SPIRIT CONFUSING…
Is the Holy Spirit a force, a person, or something else?
So….What does the Bible teach?
IF OUR GREATEST NEED… had been oil…God would have sent us a geologist.
IF OUR GREATEST NEED…had been money…God would have sent a financial planner.
IF OUR GREATEST NEED…had been pleasure..God would have sent us an entertainer.
For a long time, opponents to the authority of Scripture have stated that neither King David (approx. 1,000 B.C.) or for that matter, Moses (approx. 1,600 B.C.) could have written the respective books of the Bible that are credited to them (i.e. David's writing of most of the Psalms, and Moses' authorship of the Pentatuch, the first five books of the Old Testament), because many who have questioned the legitimacy of these authors, postulate that the art of writing had not yet been invented.
Here are the facts:
In the first decade of the twentieth century, the Gezar Calendar was discovered. It dated from 925 B.C. and was written in Hebrew. Then, a huge collection of Ugaritic texts was found in 1929. These texts date from 1400 B.C. This written language is more closely related to Hebrew than any other ancient language. Earlier discoveries at Ras Shamra revealed Phoenician writing in the 1500 B.C. period. Pots with this writing on them were found in Palestine in 1958 and 1960. So the idea that writing was not possible for King David and Moses has been thoroughly discredited. In fact, recently, proto-Sinaitic inscriptions have been found dating back to 1900 B.C., long before the days of Moses.
"Praise God from whom all blessings flow!"
This hymn sung in countless church gatherings each Sunday morning across the western world was at first to be used only in secret…
In 1674 Thomas Ken is a fellow of Winchester College, chaplain to the Bishop of Winchester, and a prebendary-a priest with administrative duties-at Winchester Cathedral. He also acts as a curate (parish priest) for one of the poorer areas of the town.
As if this workload is insufficient, he publishes a volume of prayers and humns titled, Manual of Prayers for the Use of the Scholars of Winchester College...