Hope

March 27, 2016

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Scripture

But those who die in the LORD will live; their bodies will rise again! Those who sleep in the earth will rise up and sing for joyFor your life-giving light will fall like dew on your people in the place of the dead!

~Isaiah 26:19, NLT

Quote

Blessed are those who can live with unanswered questions, who can rest in what they see and who can wait patiently for God to reveal what they can’t see.

~Charles Rozell Swindoll

When it comes to questions, I have them and it took time and grace for me to learn to live with unanswered questions. There is a lot we will not know in this life. Our understanding of reality is very dim but God has given us this blessed thing called “Hope.” How miserable we would be if we had no hope. Job had questions, lots of questions. One is found in Job 14:14…Can the dead live again? If so, this would give me hope through all my years of struggle, and I would eagerly await the release of death.

God created both the natural and spiritual world with the natural reflecting the spiritual. When it comes to the resurrection, our Creator has given us signs in all direction. A nights of restful sleep and then the awakening is a picture of the resurrection. Spring time is a picture of the resurrection–everything appeared dead but has sprang back to life. Plants are a sign of the resurrection. The same olive trees that Jesus prayed beneath are still in existence. Didn’t Titus the Roman have them cut to the ground? Yes, but that doesn’t kill and olive tree, they shoot branches from the stump. Seeds are another sign. I have all kinds of garden seed in the freezer. There is no apparent life in them but soon I will be planting them and they will come up.

Feed your faith, starve your doubt, cling to hope and trust God with all your unanswered question.

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  • EASTER SUNDAY…can you believe it!
  • Sunrise @ 8:00…Breakfast @8:30…LCBS @ 9:15…Easter Parade @ 10:10 and Celebrate Jesus @ 10:15
  • Today is your last chance to get SWAMP JOHN’S TICKETS.
  • I finished Dr. Graham’s latest and probably last book, “Where I Am” last week and I highly recommend it. It would make a good gift for a lost friend who is seeking.

Under Construction

March 10, 2016

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Scripture

I don’t mean that I am exactly what God wants me to be. I have not yet reached that goal. But I continue trying to reach it and make it mine. That’s what Christ Jesus wants me to do. It is the reason he made me his.

~Philippians 3:12, ERV

Quote

Every human being is under construction from conception to death.

~Billy Graham

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I don’t usually begin with a pic but I wanted you to see this one before you read the comments. Long before Mrs. Graham became bedridden, she was driving along a highway and encountered the familiar construction in progress signs, reduced speed, warning after warning. She patiently drove through the construction zone and was tickled by the sign at the end….”End of construction. Thank you for your patience.”

When she got home, she told the family, “I want this on my tomb stone.” They chuckled thinking she was kidding, she was not. Sometimes I wonder if I will live long enough to drive to Atlanta without encountering a construction zone with the reduced lanes and speeds, plus lots of signs. I am a conspiracy theorist, I believe construction zones are speed traps to get more revenue for the government. I am kidding of course.

Mrs. Graham has a point, roads are not the only thing under constant construction, we humans are in the same boat. As soon as we get one thing fixed, we see the need to fix something else. As Paul said, “We are not perfect yet, but we are headed in that direction.” The Chinese symbol on Mrs. Graham’s tomb stone is the Chinese character for ‘Righteousness.’ I assume it refers to the righteousness of Christ which will be fully manifested at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Hallelujah, what a SAVIOR!

  • I’m not the only one with back problems, Robert Pope has been in Cullman Regional Hospital all week. His right leg is not working properly after a recent back surgery. Sister Jane is a few doors down with knee replacement. I had an MRI yesterday and got very good news, no ruptured disc, just inflammation and aggravated nerves. I’m on steroids and better already.
  • I don’t know if we will have a baptism this Sunday are not. I have not given up but it doesn’t look good. Seth has to go to Smyrna this weekend for drills. This Sunday is Daddy’s birth date. The Marines have missed me up.
  • I understand Obama snubbed Nancy Reagan’s COLS and Scalia’s. I am not shocked. The man has no class and is a disgrace to the office. I can’t understand why the all powerful Richard Shelby has not impeached Obama. His ads proclaimed him as the man who stopped Obama. What a joke! No one has stopped Obama.
  • SWAMP JOHN’S April 3, just three weeks away and we have sold only 231 tickets which isn’t many. Remember, all proceeds go to ST. JUDE’S in Memphis. Someone told me that the Pumkin Center Fire Department sold over 500. I would think we should do better. Maybe our hearts are not in it?
  • Gary Garner’s condition has not changed. Pray for Gary.
  • June and I will [Lord willing] be attending a COLS at Salem’s Springs today. The Chairman of all Deacons was promoted on Monday. Elmer Jackson, native of Cullman County, transplanted to West Limestone after graduating Auburn as an AG teacher. He liked West Limestone so well he stayed there. He was a good man who loved Jesus.
  • FRANKLIN GRAHAM prayer rally April 14th.

Peace

February 20, 2016

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Scripture

Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.”

~John 14:27, NASB

Quote

“What a life! I know where I came from, why I am here and where I am going. His peace flooded my heart and overwhelms my soul, even in the midst of despair.”

~William Franklin Graham [Turn 98 on November 7]

There are at least four kinds of peace mentioned in the bible and Jesus is the key to all four. No wonder Paul said, “In Him {Jesus} all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are hidden.”

  1. There is PEACE with God [Romans 5:1]…Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
  2. There is the PEACE of God [Philippians 4:6-7]… Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience the peace of God, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
  3. There is PEACE on earth [Luke 2:14]…“Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” Peace of earth will not happen until Jesus returns and establishes peace on earth. It is a future peace.
  4. There is everlasting PEACE [Isaiah 9:6-7] And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace There will be no end.

Jesus did not have wealth. When He died, His cloak was all He owed but He gave His disciples the greatest inheritance anyone can hope for, He left them His PEACE.  Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.”

In the opening sentence of Chapter 15 in Dr. Graham’s last book [Where I AM] he says…”I know men and women who would write a check for a million dollars if they could find peace but it cannot be bought.”

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  • Full schedule tomorrow: Deacon’s @ 8:15, LCBS @ 9:15, Celebrate Jesus in Worship @ 10:15, Celebrate Jesus with Baptism @ 11:15…AWANA and Visitation @ 5:30 with evening worship @ 6:15.
  • Ona Holladay  {100 years old last August} CELEBRATION OF LIFE SERVICE today @ 1:00, FRIENDSHIP Baptist Church.
  • June got a new piano yesterday and we tried it out last night. She and I sang “Never Grow Old,” and it was chilling. It made the hair on top of my head stand straight up. We may put that one on our next Album.
  • Bufford Burgess is not doing well but I thought Gary Garner looked a little better. I tried to wake him but he was sound a sleep.
  • We have a baptism Sunday, Will {the thrill} Morgan will be our candidate. You will get to hear his testimony on Video.

Gary, Keri and Kane

Starlight

February 18, 2016

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Scripture

“For you shall go out with joy, and be led out with peace; The mountains and the hills shall break forth into singing before you, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.”

~Isaiah 55:12, NKJV

Quote

And when I reach the other side, I want to look you in the eye and know that I have arrived in a world where I belong.

~Reepicheep {Voyage of The Dawn Treader}

I doubt if anyone below the age of 50 will recognize the name Pat Nixon. Pat was born March 16, 1912 in Ely, Nevada but eventually moved to California where she worked her way through college [USC] doing odd jobs. She later became a devoted wife and mother with no ambition for fame. Eventually, she would become the first lady of the United States. Unfortunately, due to events beyond her control, she has never received the honor due her.  Dr. William Franklin Graham in his last book, WHERE I AM, devotes and entire chapter to her memory. Thank you Dr. Graham for reminding us the greatest of this exemplary and extraordinary first lady.

  • Mike Wallace of CBS– “Her stamina and courage, her drive and self-control made her one of America’s most remarkable women.”
  • Billy Graham–“Few women in public life have suffered so much with so much grace.”
  • Tricia Nixon Cox–“Her faith in God sustained her during the last difficult days of her life.”
  • Julie Nixon Eisenhower–“My mother’s favorite phrase was ‘Onward and Upward’. {C.S. Lewis…The Horse and His Boy…Chronicles of Narnia}

The Secret Service code name for Pat Nixon was ‘Starlight.’ Indeed she was a beacon of hope during the dark days of scandal and ensuing shame. Those who knew her best testify that she never lost her sweetness of spirit nor her sense of optimism. Judging by her spirit, you would not have known there was such a thing as Watergate. In spite of all the difficult circumstances, Pat Nixon was lead by peace and went out with joy with the applause of heaven.

P.S.

I have very little confidence in politicians but even less in the media. The Payton Manning fiasco is case in point. For those who can’t go back to the Nixon era, Watergate was a feeding frenzy for the media. The power to destroy a man and his legacy was enthralling to them: they enjoyed every moment. Collateral damage meant nothing to them. They couldn’t have cared less about Nixon’s family.

I have news for the liberal media: Nixon was a cub scout compared to the Kennedy’s, Johnson’s and the Clinton’s.

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  • I think they got the weather forecast wrong. I went to Debbie’s mom COLS without a coat. June told me I wouldn’t need one. That’s the first time this week she has been wrong. I think it is supposed to be better the rest of the week.
  • Pray for Gary Garner. We need a miracle folks. Gary is very, very weak. Let’s lift him up DBC.
  • Another great GATHERING…Man I love the Wednesday night service. I studied more for last night’s sermon than I have for any sermon I have preached in years and I had a ball delivering it.

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“I Wonder”

February 12, 2016

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Scripture

Do not become proud at that time and forget the Lord your God, who rescued you from slavery in the land of Egypt.

~Deuteronomy 8:14, NLT

Quote

“If God doesn’t judge America for her sins, He will owe and apology to Sodom and Gomorrah.”

~Ruth Bell Graham

The year was 1957, the place was New York city; Billy Graham was there for a 16 week crusade. He spent a lot of time in his hotel room, praying, preparing and observing the masses on the streets below–all moving rapidly from here to there, busy with life and oblivious to the future. Dr. Graham began to wonder, “How many of them are concerned with things that truly matter; things that have eternal significance.” He also thought to himself, “How long will God be patient with America?” This was almost 60 years ago and things have not gotten better.

This same concern is voiced weekly in our Deacon’s meeting–“How much more patience can God have with such an ungrateful nation?” Dr. Graham believes, and so do I, that some aspects of judgement have begun already.

Around the time of Joe David’s birth [America’s 200th birthday] the following chart was circulated. I know that those of you my age have seen the chart before. In the world’s great civilizations, the following cycle in evident in each of their histories:

  • From bondage to spiritual faith
  • From spiritual faith to great courage
  • From great courage to liberty
  • From liberty to abundance
  • From abundance to selfishness
  • From selfishness to complacency
  • From complacency to indifference [apathy]
  • From indifference to dependency
  • From dependency to bondage

I’d say we are somewhere between dependence and bondage: what do you think?

Gary, Keri and Kane

 

 

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SCRIPTURE

I know, Lord, that our lives are not our own. We are not able to plan our own course. So correct me, Lord, but please be gentle. Do not correct me in anger, for I would die.

~Jeremiah 10:23-24, NLT

QUOTE

“Happy are they who mourn the inadequacy of self, for they shall be comforted with the sufficiency of Christ.”

~Billy Graham

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Experience reveals that we are inadequate. History proves that we are inadequate. The word of God declares that we are inadequate to save ourselves. If we had been adequate, Christ would not have come to live a perfect life in our behalf or die an atoning death in our behalf.

Before we can be strong in Christ we must realize that we are weak in the flesh. Before we can receive power from on high, we must confess our powerlessness. We must lament our sins before we can rejoice in the sinlessness of Jesus.

Jeremiah was known as the weeping prophet. He felt absolutely overwhelmed by the sin of his fellow countrymen: he knew their refusal to repent was going to bring judgment and there was nothing he could do to prevent it. He witnessed the death of a nation. The book of Lamentation is a journal chronicling his grief. It is one of the most gripping books in the bible.

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  • Franklin Graham’s FESTIVAL OF HOPE coming to Birmingham, Alabama August 14-16 but our only shot is Friday August 14th and it is a long shot. Guest include Kirk Franklin, Newsboys, Lacey, Flame, Kari Jobe, Michael W. Smith, Tasha Cobbs, Amena Brown, and DJ Opdiggy. Friday night begins at 7:00 in the Bartow Arena. No admission. Doors open 90 minutes before event.
  • We have a lot of sick folks to remember: Carman did get to come home yesterday. Robert Pope should come home today. Bufford Burgess is in ICU at DGH. Reagan Bowling [Billy Ray and Jeans granddaughter] is in HH with kidney infection. Johnny Burnett’s sister is also in HH. Kane is not having a good week. Billy said they gave him a strong doze of chemo and he is having a hard time bouncing back. He thinks they will have to stay through most of next week. I have not talked to Gary Garner but I understand he is not having a good week. Mavis Fitzgerald is also sick: they think it may be the shingles.  Keri is not any better but she’s decided to just to keep going. Take a moment to pray for these folks. There are some serious needs on this list and a couple of them are spiritual in nature.
  • God is good: He answers prayer when we don’t even have the faith to articulate them. I have a very reliable source that tells me we will have our second van by Fall and it comes as a donation. You can’t beat that! We are trying to get a fixed price on the parking lot: hopefully we will have it in a couple of weeks and we are going ahead and getting some plans drawn up for a new play ground. We will try to put two or three options in foyer and let you pick the one you like best. There is a chance, LORD willing that we will get all three projects done in 2015.
  • Gregg Stinson found Big Mama her mini-SUV and she is tickled pink. It is a Nissan Rogue and it is practically new. The Nav system interacts: you just tell it where you want to go and bingo, you have your guidance. Big Mama and I want to thank Gregg for his patience and kindness.
  • A lot of folks are headed to the lake and old Gregg Holladay is still lounging around on the beach: they can’t get him to come home. A big gang is headed to Six Flags over Hotlanta in the morning. Man, I hate to miss that trip and I sure envy old Gregg who does a pretty good job making the coffee. Where ever you are headed or if you are to tired or broke to travel, we hope you have a great weekend.

Keri and Kane

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SCRIPTURE

When you want a piece of land, you find a way to seize it. When you want someone’s house, you take it by fraud and violence. You cheat a man of his property, stealing his family’s inheritance.

~Micah 2:2, NLT

QUOTE

Filling your mind with God honoring thoughts takes a deliberate act of the will; it will not happen by accident [default].

~Paula A. Kirk

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Chip Ingram

Chip Ingram

Chip Ingram says that we can identify our passion but monitoring what we think about last, just before we go to sleep and what we think about when we first awake. He may be right and the thought of this creates some concern on my part.  I struggle with my thoughts. I think of 2 Corinthians 10:5 often, We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. My weakness is not greed: I don’t thing about acquiring more property and certainly not at the expense of someone else. I’m too close to heaven to be concerned about real estate here. Do the meek of the earth suffer material loss because others are willing to use fraud or force to take their inheritance? I was talking to someone just the other day about a young man who attended DBC some 15 years back and he was cheated out of his inheritance by two relatives. I knew one of the relatives personally and lost all respect for him. I’ve made some very poor decisions in life which have no doubt cost me money. I’ve never pretended to be a business man but again, this is not what I think about. I am going to reserve my right to confess my weakness to my High Priest. I know He will pray for me and He will not blab my sin to everyone in the community. I’m sure you understand.

Do you think Ingram is right? Do our thoughts reveal our passion? How many of us are thinking about a lost friend? How many of us are thinking about sharing the gospel? Are we focused on things above or things on earth?

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I apologize for not being on the ball: the State Convention is promoting 40 days of Prayer for Marriage. I am suppose to be sending you daily tweets but I have dropped the ball. I will try to do better. This is Day 6.

a 40 days of prayer

TODAY WE PRAY FOR SENIOR ADULTS

95 on November 7

PRAY FOR VBS–JUNE 8-12–NEED WORKERS

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  • The COLS for Mrs. Irene Pope is Monday at 2:00 PM at FRIENDSHIP Baptist church. Visitation will precede the service.
  • Pray for me today, LORD willing, I will preach twice at DBC and I am to speak at a BIBLICAL MARRIAGE rally in Cullman. I missed the Morgan county rally which was a couple of weeks back. The coordinator of the event was turned down by every Cullman County pastor he contacted. We are currently {State wide} in a 40 day prayer for the sanctity of marriage. I forgot to mention it yesterday.
  • Full schedule today except no Deacon’s Meeting.
  • Today is last opp to purchase ROSES FOR MOTHER.
  • Senior Day is May 17th in the am service.
  • I got to visit my Aunt Angie yesterday who is battling cancer. She is a sweet woman and she loves Jesus. My next goal is to visit my uncle Floyd in Rome. It’s a little further drive. Thank You Jesus for your goodness.
  • Pray for VBS June 8-12…Workers needed.
  • Don Fields has heart surgery next Friday, May 8th. Pray for Don.

Keri and Kane

Bumper Sticker

Bumper Sticker

Keri and Kane

HEAVEN

March 20, 2015

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SCRIPTURE

We’ve been given a glimpse of the real thing, our true home, our resurrection bodies! The Spirit of God whets our appetite by giving us a taste of what’s ahead. He puts a little of heaven in our hearts so that we’ll never settle for less.

~2 Corinthians 5:4-5, MSG

QUOTE

Earth has no sorrow that heaven can not heal.

~Thomas Moore

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God’s presence fully manifested, no sin, no temptation, no Satan, no sorrow, no death, no guilt and no anxiety. Wow, I can only imagine!  William Franklin Graham says, “Heaven will be the perfection we have always longed for. All the things that made earth and unlovely place will be absent in heaven.” The late great Dr. Vance Havner said, “The fruit trees of heaven bend over the walls; if you’ll look up, you can pick a little fruit now.” The gift of the Spirit is a foretaste of glory divine and so is worship. I agree with both: it is great to have heaven to look forward to and what a blessing to get a foretaste here on earth. Dallas Willard’s last words to his grand daughter were: He said, “Give’m heaven.”

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  • TODAY WE PRAY FOR FAMILY.
  • Senior Adult luncheon today and I hope I get to be there: down in my back.
  • No deacon’s meeting Sunday.
  • Don’t forget our Brownie Blitz Sunday Evening.

Keri and Kane

In Times of Trouble

January 5, 2015

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SCRIPTURE

God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble. So we will not fear when earthquakes come and the mountains crumble into the sea. Let the oceans roar and foam. Let the mountains tremble as the waters surge!

~Psalms 46:1-3, NLT

QUOTE

Comfort and prosperity have never enriched the world as much as adversity.

~William Franklin Graham

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In 2004 an earthquake occurred in the floor of the Indian Ocean causing a Tsunami [Tidal wave] that took the lives of 290,000 people from the countries bordering the Indian Ocean. The word surge is the same Hebrew word used for pride: it means a majestic swelling. These massive waves created by the earthquakes can reach heights of 100 feet and they have the power to shake mountains and destroy entire cities in a matter of seconds.

Tsunami of 2004

Tsunami of 2004

I think David is alluding to more than a catastrophic event like a Tsunami. There are times in life when we feel like we are being hit by a massive wave of adversity. Everything around us begins to come unraveled at the seams. We are hit with overwhelming circumstances. 

I’m going to confess, I often times get overwhelmed by circumstances. Cancer is a Tsunami; so is divorce, jealousy, greed and drug addiction. How do you help an alcoholic? How do you get a person you love to stop smoking? If you know the answer, my email is jack@danvillebaptist.org. If I stop here: this is a bad blog. 

The good news is in verse 1-2, “God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble. So we will not fear when earthquakes come and the mountains crumble into the sea.” The ‘times of trouble’ are coming sooner or later but we have a refuge from the storm and He is Jesus Christ the LORD. He is our ARK, our Shelter, our Hope, Peace and Salvation.

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  • Today we pray for MINISTERS AND MISSIONARIES.
  • You never know what a day will bring. After having a great visit with Henry Saturday night, he took a turn for the worse early Sunday morning. He was in a coma when I posted. Two things to give thanks for: [1] He trusted Christ as his savior [2] He is in HH and getting good care. They keep him sedated so he does not struggle to breathe. I did not get to see Kenny yesterday but I will be checking on him today. Also, I want you to pray for Wendy Turner.
  • June was pulling for the Lions because of Matthew Stafford’s affiliation with Georgia. When we left for church they had a comfortable lead but they blew it and Dallas [The Florida State of the NFL] came back and beat them. It looks like we may have to give up football all together. Let me ask you a question: who is more popular, Jamis Winston or Jerry Jones? Tell me it’s not a good question.
  • Shohn and I met briefly last night to discuss an idea of mine. I think LCBS classes should have more parties but they need a push, a little encouragement. We are thinking of having a PARTY NIGHT once a quarter. We would do it on Sunday night and Shohn would have the children at the FORTE and we will get someone to do preschool. We may have to put a time limit on the party for those who have children. Shohn and I were thinking 2 hours. My class went to Cracker Barrel on the 28th [Sunday night] and we had a good time. Pray about it!
  • I’m starting a diet today: please don’t tempt me. I am weak. I need to lose 35 pounds. My goal is 180 and I have not weighed 180 since Junior College.
  • Big Mama and Joe David agree that it will get down to 14* Wednesday night. I am find with 30* and above. I don’t care for EXTREME weather hot or cold but I will take cold over hot any day of the week and twice on Sunday. January in Jerry Segar’s favorite month because he loves 14* weather. He loves 14* weather because he loves to deer hunt. I think I’ll do a TOP TEN on why I need to become a DEER HUNTER. Number one, you love January. Number two if Alabama gets their brains bashed in you just load up the jeep and go hunt a deer. 
No snow in the forecast: I don't think!

                                                                   No snow in the forecast: I don’t think!

Angels

August 29, 2014

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SCRIPTURE

And an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense.

~Luke 1:11, NASB

QUOTE

Believers, look up – take courage. The angels are nearer than you think.

~William Franklin Graham

my two cents worth.

Have you noticed, Angels just appear? They don’t walk up or walk away: they appear and disappear and they usually frighten us when they appear. It seems like the first thing that an angel says is “Don’t be afraid.” Angels are spirits who have the ability to take on the human characteristics when it suits their Creator. Angels are like radio waves, they are in the air; they are everywhere; they are very near but rarely do they appear.  I have never seen an angel that I know of but I do believe in angels. There are many things we cannot see yet we believe to be real. I believe germs but I’ve never seen a single one. I believe in pain but I’ve never seen pain; well I have seen what you call a pain in the neck. Pain, like an angel can appear in human form.  Seriously, I believe in angels, there very well could be one near me this instant. Hey, we can learn from them: They worship God unceasingly and they obey instantly.

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  • Marathon today but Holiday weekend coming!
  • Senior Adults: see you at 11:30 in the Parlor.
  • 5th Quarter tonight after game.
  • Today we pray for FAMILY.

benjamin-franklin Proverbs 25.27