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Sunday, March 29, 2009

The Alphabet

Someone sent me this very inspiring forward. Thought I would share with you wonderful people out there. Enjoy!

A lthough things are not perfect,
B ecause of trial or pain,
Continue in thanksgiving
D on't even think to blame.
E ven when the times are hard,
F ierce winds are bound to blow,
G od is forever able
H old on to what you know.
Imagine life without His love,
J oy would cease to be,
K eep thanking Him for all the things
L ove imparts thee to see.
Move out of ' Camp Complaining ',
No weapon that is known
O n earth can yield the power
P raise can do alone.
Quit worrying about the future,
R edeem the time at hand,
S tart every day with prayer
To 'thank' is God's command.
U ntil we see Him coming,
V ictorious in the sky,
We'll run the race with gratitude,
X alting God most high.
Y es, there'll be good times and yes some will be bad, but...
Z ion waits in glory...where none are ever sad!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Proud To Serve

I arrived at church this rainy morning to find my pastor impeccably dressed, wearing a black overcoat, and with a broom in hand sweeping away the water that had collected on the porch. I said, "Pastor, what are you doing?" He replied, "I'm just trying to get rid of some of this water." Minutes later, he stood in the pulpit and delivered a dynamic sermon.

His action reminded me of Jesus' words: "And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant: Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many" (Matthew 20: 27-28) Jesus spoke these words after the mother of James and John had requested that He allow them to "sit, the one on thy right and the other on thy left, in thy kingdom"( v 19). Jesus' reply was to remind this woman of the grave responsibility that such a position carries.

Many of us aspire to lead in the church and elsewhere, but are we prepared to sweep the floor or take out the trash, if necessary. Or are we like the Pharisees of Jesus' day, who expected to be given the best seats in the synagogue and to be bowed and catered to. Jesus reminded them, "But he that is the greatest among you shall be your servant. And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted" (23: 11-12).

Being a leader is an awesome privelege, but it carries with it certain responsiblities. If you are a leader today, try to emulate Jesus' example. Humble yourself and become a servant first as He did.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Where Are You?

This morning I woke up around five o'clock and had some difficulty going back to sleep. It was much too early to wake up on a Saturday morning, especially the last one before Daylight Saving Time. But as I lay there, this scripture came to my mind: "And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?" (Genesis 3:9). A strange thought at that hour of the morning. I knew where I was. In my warm, cozy bed, but immediately I understood what the Holy Spirit was saying to me.

The past month had been a busy one at work. That, plus the unusually cold days, seemed to have taken a toll on my no-longer-young body. I wasn't praying as I would have liked to. Oh, I still prayed, but my prayers were sketchy, half-sleepy mumblings at nights and even less so in the morning. And God was saying to me, "Where are you? I want to speak to you. I want to commune with you and have fellowship with you. I want to wrap my arms around you and comfort you and ease your burdens, if you will let me."

I turned over in bed and said, "Lord, I'm sorry. Forgive me for being so busy that I do not have time for you." Right there and then I became wide awake and I began to pour out my heart to God as I hadn't done in a long time. I spoke, I listened and He spoke back to me. It was a beautiful moment of interaction with my Heavenly Father, and when it was over I felt relieved, refreshed and restored. Before I knew it, I was fast asleep.

Prayer has been on my mind a lot lately, and I believe that was the reason the Holy Spirit dropped that verse into my spirit. When He asked Adam so many years ago "Where art thou?" it wasn't because He didn't know where he was. He wasn't playing hide-and-seek with Adam. God sees us at all times, but in effect He was saying to Adam, "Where are you in your relationship with me? Why are you hiding from me? Why don't you run to greet me the way you always do?"

He said it to me this morning, and He may be saying the same thing to you. Listen. If you hear Him calling you, don't hide. Run to Him. He won't hurt you. He says, "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart" (Jeremiah 29: 11-13).