April 2010

The Power Within

Story of the day: The Power Within

Do you remember Clark Kent, that mild-mannered newspaper reporter, of whom on one ever expected anything out of the ordinary? But whenever there was a sudden demand for action far beyond the ability of mortal men, Clark stepped into a closet, stripped off his conservative business suit, and emerged complete with bulging muscles and spectacular costume as–Superman! Superman, the one who could do what otherwise could not be done.

That is exactly what the Word of God is teaching us, although perhaps you have not seen it in those terms before. As we who are believers step into our identity in Christ, who we are, to whom we belong, and who is within us–we will find love, motivation, and power available so that we are able to do what otherwise we could not do. [Green, Michael P. 1500 Illustrations for Biblical Preaching. Grand Rapids, Baker Books. 1989. pg. 202.]

Quote of the day: Mortenson

“Go to the Bible for your protection, correction, and direction.”

Bible verse of the day: 2 Timothy 3:16 (NIV)

“All Scripture is God breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness,”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank You that Your Word provides clear direction, protection and training in the way that we should go. As I continue to step into the identity in which You created me for, I pray to be obedient to what You are asking of me and to be still and listen to You so that I can hear what You have to share with me. Thank You for teaching me how to find love, motivation, and the power within to do what I otherwise couldn’t have done. I love You and I am thankful for this day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen


October 2008

Feeling imposed upon, overburdened, or overworked?

Story of the day:  Feeling imposed upon, overburdened, or overworked?

     “There was once an ant who felt imposed upon, overburdened, and overworked.  You see, he was instructed to carry a piece of straw across an expanse of concrete.  The straw was so long and heavy that he staggered beneath its weight and felt he would not survive.  Finally, as the stress of his burden began to overwhelm him and he began to wonder if life itself was worth it, the ant was brought to a halt by a large crack in his path.  There was no way of getting across that deep divide, and it was evident that to go around it would be his final undoing.  He stood there discouraged.  Then suddenly a thought struck him.  Carefully laying the straw across the crack in the concrete, he walked over it and safely reached the other side.  His heavy load had become a helpful bridge.  The burden was also a blessing.” (Green)

     My friends and family, Jesus is that bridge.  He not only will bear the burden of all that You are going through, He will always be there for You, and will catch every tear, every drop of sweat from Your brow, and will pour them back into Your life as a blessing.  Have you given your life to Jesus?  Have you made Him a priority in your life, if not, then now is the time.  What are you waiting for?  No one ever said that life would be easy, but I guarantee it will be a lot sweeter with Jesus in the picture.  All you have to do is ask Him into Your life. It can be as simple as praying this prayer.

Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner and have displeased You in many ways. I believe You died for my sin and because You love me so much. Only through faith in Your death and resurrection can I be forgiven. I want to turn from my sin and ask You to come into my life as my Savior and Lord.  Thank you, Lord Jesus, for saving me. Amen.

My friends, if you have said this prayer, Jeff and I would love to know about it, talk with you about it, and share in your joy!  Visit us on the website or shoot us back an email, we would love to hear your story:)   We also want to encourage you to become involved in a local Bible believing church where you can grow and learn from the Word of God. We hope that you have a blessed day! 

Quote of the day:  Author Unknown

“Someone has said, “A brook would lose its song if God removed the rocks.”

Bible verse of the day:  Hebrews 6:15

“And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

My prayer goes out today for those that may feel imposed upon, overburdened, or overworked.  I pray that through this time in their life that they will use this heavy load as a helpful bridge in their life.  Father, I pray that all their tears will be caught in Your gracious hand and will be poured back into their life as a blessing.  I pray for courage, strength, and for rest in all that they do and that through this whole situation, they find peace in You to get them through it.  I thank You for those that have overcome obstacles in their life, including myself, and I pray for a productive day that brings honor and glory to Your Name. I thank You for this blessed day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

October 2008

Testing Limits

Story of the day:  Testing Limits

     While traveling around the country, bigger vehicles such as:  semi trucks, tractor trailers, and other wide load vehicles, always seem to catch my attention.  I especially notice them more in states where the roads aren’t very well taken care of.  Every pot hole that we hit, or bump that would catapult our car seemed to have been made by vehicles whose weight far extended the capacity of what the road was capable of handling, or what I thought it was capable of handling. 

     Most of “the large tractor-trailer trucks that travel the highways of the nation are subjected to a load limit.  This means that there is a limit as to how much weight each truck is allowed to carry.  There is a good reason for establishing such limits.  If the trucks were allowed to exceed their weight limit, the roads would eventually fall apart, because a given road is designed to support vehicles only up to a certain weight.

     Likewise, God knows how much we can bear when He allows us to be tested.  He has assigned a definite “load limit” to each of us and never exceeds it.” (Green)  In other words, He knows exactly how much our road can handle.

Quote of the day:  Leon Morris

“When the high seas are raging, it’s no time to change ships.”

Bible verse of the day:  1 Corinthians 10:13

“No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

You have said that You won’t give me more than I can handle, and for that I am grateful!  Father, I too, like the roads know that when tested, will hold up to what is brought my way.  Thank You for being faithful and for teaching me to remain strong even during the times that I might feel at my weakest.  I pray for those that may be experiencing some rough patches right now, and I ask in Your Son’s name that they too will see that what they are going through is just for a season.  As they go through it, I pray that You will radiate the brightest so that they can see You through what might seem like their darkest hour.  I thank You for this beautiful day and I look forward to heading to San Antonio this weekend, so that we can look at some places for Your church. 

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

October 2008

Reconciliation

Story of the day:  Reconciliation

     “Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s parents disapproved so strongly of her marriage to Robert that they disowned her.  Almost weekly Elizabeth wrote love letters to her mother and father, asking for a reconciliation.  They never once replied.  After ten years of letter writing, Elizabeth received a huge box in the mail.  She opened it.  To her dismay and heartbreak, the box contained all of her letters to her parents.  Not one of them had ever been opened!

     Today those love letters are among the most beautiful in classical English Literature.  Had her parents opened and read only a few of them, a reconciliation might have been effected.

     The Bible is God’s letter of reconciliation to us.  We should open and read it thoroughly and often.” Author Unknown

Quote of the day:  Vonette Bright

“If we neglect the Bible, we cannot expect to benefit from the wisdom and direction that result from knowing God’s Word.”

Bible verse of the day:  Hebrews 3:13

“but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank You for Your Word and the reconciliation that comes from reading it.  Father, sometimes life is difficult and things don’t always turn out the way that I plan.  But even through these times, You never leave my side and You are always there to pick up the pieces.  I thank You for this day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

October 2008

Power of the saw

Story of the day:  Power of the saw

     “The story has been told of a do-it-yourselfer who went into a hardware store early one morning and asked for a saw.  The salesman took a chain saw from the shelf and commented that it was their “newest model, with the latest in technology, guaranteed to cut ten cords of firewood a day.”  The customer thought that sounded pretty good, so he bought it on the spot.

     The next day the customer returned, looking somewhat exhausted.  “Something must be wrong with this saw,” he moaned.  “I worked as hard as I could and only managed to cut three cords of wood.  I used to do four with my old-fashioned saw.”  Looking confused, the salesman said, “Here, let me try it out back on some wood we keep there.”  They went to the woodpile, the salesman pulled the cord, and as the motor went Vvvroooooommmmm, the customer leaped back and exclaimed, “What’s that noise?”

     The customer trying to saw wood without the power of the saw to help him is very much like the believer who attempts to live the Christian life without the daily empowerment of the Spirit.”

Quote of the day:  J. Hudson Taylor

“We have given too much attention to methods and to machinery and to resources, and too little to the Source of Power, the filling with the Holy Spirit.”

Bible verse of the day:  2 Peter 1:21

“for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank You for the power of the Holy Spirit, and for allowing my life to be empowered by the Holy Spirit.  As my days get busier, the new season that I am in, I pray for rest and to remain focused on Your Will and my family.  I pray to make the most of my time, and to especially find time for You daily, where I may come into Your presence and receive a refreshing and renewing of my mind and soul.  I thank You for Your gift and for another beautiful day.

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

October 2008

Yielding

Story of the day:  Yielding

     “Sometimes, when you enter a main highway or come to an intersection, you will see a sign with the word “YIELD” in large letters.  The sign means that the driver on one road is to yield the right to proceed to any driver on the other road.  The latter driver does not own the right of the way; rather , another driver yields it to him.

     This is an excellent picture of what Christian Liberty is all about.  We are to yield our rights so that others may go on to greater maturity.  No on can demand that another believer yield his rights; rather, as an act of maturity, he should see the need to give up his rights for the good of another.  Perhaps we should make yield signs and put them up in our homes and churches–because it is a Christian philosophy to yield, to give way to other believers.” Author Unknown

Quote of the day:  Bill Hybels

“If you want to be truly happy, you won’t find it on an endless quest for more stuff.   You’ll find it in receiving God’s generosity and then passing that generosity along.”

Bible verse of the day:  Proverbs 16:21

“The wise in heart will be called prudent, and sweetness of the lips increases learning.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

So many times in Your Word, I see Your humbleness.  You gave without a second thought and did so in a way that ministered to many, and continues to minister.  I thank You for painting this amazing picture of giving.  I pray to give of myself daily, yield my rights so that others can go on to be more mature than I.  Thank You for continually showing me the Grace and Love that You have for others, in hopes that I may continue to grow in this area.  I thank You for this day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

October 2008

In His right spot, In His Time

Story of the day:  In His right spot, In His Time

     Our family just got back from a family reunion in Missouri on Monday.  The day the family got together, was filled with reuniting, laughter, tears, etc….Jeff and I were given the opportunity to speak about our Lord and Savior, our daughter sang, and the boys just had fun being boys.  While we were sitting at our table, enjoying our meal, a young lady that was there as a friend to one of the family members became intrigued in our conversation about starting up the church in San Antonio.  She waited so patiently, and I knew by the smile on her face, that she had something important to say.  We had shared, through our conversation, that although we have done some things and have talked to people about the church, nothing had been laid in stone, and we still weren’t sure what the next phase was for this ministry.  She quickly stated that her church’s mission is to fund new churches from the ground up.  I couldn’t believe what I had just heard, and I immediately began to praise God, because He sent her our way, sat her at our table, and in His right spot, in His time, connected us with someone that we needed to speak to about the church, and getting it started. 

     God puts people into Your path at unusual times and places, sometimes the times and places may seem random to us, but they are not random, there just because, they are God’s perfect times and places.  They are there to remind us that He is in control of everything.   It is so important to wait on God, and not do things when we think it’s time or “feel” like it, because we may miss out on the blessing that comes along with obedience.  Pray and ask God what His Purpose is for your life.  Remember, we all have a purpose and we are all important to God’s mission.  Are you on board?  It’s not too late! 

Quote of the day:  Henry Ward Beecher

“Oh what joy it brings to me to think that I am not a lonely wanderer trying to find my way, but that the vague and inexplicable yearnings which I have, and I am following, are the draw-strings thrown out to lead me by the One who knows just what my necessities are, and who stands ready to relieve them all!”

Bible verse of the day:  Romans 8:14

“For as many as are led by the Spirit of god, these are the sons of God.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank You for always picking the right places and the right times to show me that You are in control of EVERYTHING!  I am grateful to You for always following through and giving me hope each day that I am here in this world.  Thank You for sending people into my life that validate and confirm the plan that You have before me.  I praise You with all that I am, love You from a heart that You continue to mold into Your likeness, and worship You from the depths of my soul.  Thank You for creating me to do Your Will and for sharing with others just how merciful, loving, and just You are.  Thank You God for always coming through and allowing me to be a part of this bigger picture that I can’t even imagine.  I thank You for this day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

October 2008

Released from bondage of perfectionism

Story of the day:  Released from bondage of perfectionism

     “God expects more failure from us than we do from ourselves because God knows who we are.  We are not the righteous person who occasionally sins, we are the sinful person who occasionally–by God’s grace–gets it right.  When we start from this perspective we are released from the bondage of perfectionism and are able to forgive ourselves once and for all.  We are to take our cue from him.  We may be disappointed with ourselves but God is not.  We may feel like condemning ourselves, but God does not.

     Forgiving ourselves for our failures is a big task.  We expect so much.  Jesus’ disciples failed Him–but in every case the whole story had not yet been told.  There were many successes ahead for them–just as there are for you.  Lighten up on yourself.  God has called you to Himself.  You are loved by Him.  How can you belittle what God so loves?”  James Bryan Smith and Nick Harrison

Quote of the day:  James Long

“One reason God created time was so there would be a place to bury the failures of the past.”

Bible verse of the day:  Romans 8:2

“For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father:

Thank You for releasing me from the bondage of perfectionism.  Thank You that the righteous requirement might be fulfilled in me who does not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.  Thank You for the times that I don’t always get it right, and yet You still love me no matter what.  When I fall, You are quick to pick me up.  It’s just like a mother or father of a child who has fallen down, and You are still there encouraging me and showing me the way so that I might not fall again.  Thank You for loving me so much and creating me that I may share You with the world.  I thank You for this day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

September 2008

Help me!

Story of the day:  Help me!

     Billy Graham writes about how “once a poor Chinese woman went up to the foothills to cut grass.  Her baby was tied to her back and a little child walked beside her.

     Just as she reached the top of a hill, she heard a roar.  Frightened, she turned and saw a mother tigress springing at her, followed by her two cubs.

     The illiterate Chinese woman had never attended school or church, but a missionary once told her about Jesus, “who is able to help you when you are in trouble.”  As the tiger’s claws tore into her arm, the woman cried out, “O Jesus, help me!”  The tiger, instead of attacking again, suddenly turned and ran away.

     What “beasts” are attacking you?  Chances are you will never be attacked by a wild tiger, but you may be attacked by doubts, fears, worry, loneliness, or despair.

     Cry out to Jesus and He will answer you just as surely as the Chinese woman’s desperate cry was heard and answered.”

Quote of the day:  Bill Bright

“Prayer accomplishes more than anything else.”

Bible verse of the day:  Psalm 91:11

“For He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank You for sharing Your Word with me daily.  It is Your Word that sustains me in all aspects of my life.  Father, just as this Chinese woman cried out to You and You heard her cry, my prayer for today is for someone that is experiencing their own tiger attacks.  Whether it be doubt, fear, worry, loneliness, or despair, Father, I pray that they too will cry out and see for themselves how quickly You come to them and how much You love them.  There is nothing out there too big for You to handle, and once we give it over to You, things always go smoother.  I thank You for this beautiful day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

September 2008

Unconditional Love

Story of the day:  Unconditional Love

     One Sunday a little boy looked up at his dad and asked, “Daddy, how does God love us?”  His father answered, “Son, God loves us with an unconditional love.”

     The lad thought for a moment and then asked, “Daddy, what kind of love is unconditional love?”  After a few minutes of silence his father answered, “Do you remember the two boys who used to live next door to us and the cute little puppy they got last Christmas?” “Yes.”  “Do you remember how they used to tease it, throw sticks and even rocks at it?”  “Yes.”  “Do you also remember how the puppy would always greet them with a wagging tail and would try to lick their faces?”  “Yes.”  “Well, that puppy had an unconditional love for those two boys.  they certainly didn’t deserve his love for them because they were mean to him.  But, he loved them anyway.”

     The father then made his point:  “God’s love for us is also unconditional.  Men throw rocks at his Son, Jesus, and hit him with sticks.  They even killed him.  But, Jesus loved them anyway.”

Quote of the day:  Vonette Bright

“You can be sure you are abiding in Christ if you are able to have a Christlike love toward the people that irritate you the most.”

Bible verse of the day:  Romans 13:10

“Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

I have been praying to open my heart to love others the way that You love me.  The love that You have shared with me to give to others is beyond what I could ever imagine.  Thank You for loving me this much.  The Love that You have is so great that even when one drop spills over from Heaven, it has saturated my life and touched me to my very core.  I can’t express how grateful I am to You for it.  I pray that the love that I have will spill over into compassion that I show towards others while doing Your Will.  Open the eyes of my heart, that I may see others the way that You do, and that is with eyes of Love.  I thank You for this day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen