Celebrate Jesus.crimsonjpg

SCRIPTURE

It is good for me that I was afflicted, That I may learn Your statutes.

~Psalm 119:71

QUOTE

It was only when I lay there on the rotting prison straw that I sensed within myself the first stirring of good…so bless you, prison, for having been in my life.

~Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s 

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In Charles Swindoll’s book Encourage Me, he tells the story of a 1968 commercial airliner landing on its belly in New York City. The landing gear malfunctioned and they had to land without wheels on a run way coated with foam. Everyone survived but prior to landing there was some tension. Once the flight attendants had everyone buckled in their seats with head between knees the Captain came over the intercom with this message….We are beginning our final descent. At this moment, in accordance with International Aviation Codes established in Geneva, it is my obligation to inform you that if you believe in God you should commence prayer. I had never heard of this pray code, had you?

The amazing thing about this incident is no one on board, other than the Pilot and Co-pilot knew anything about the Geneva prayer code. It was there all the time but it took a crisis to bring it out.

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn was once acclaimed the greatest Russian author since Tolstoy. He was a not only a gifted writer, he was very outspoken about the evils of communism and for that he was sentenced to 8 years in the labor camps [prisons]. It was in one of these prisons that he meet Dr. Boris Kornfield, a Jew who had converted to Christianity. Although the Russians needed doctors, they did not look favorably on Kornfield sharing his faith daily. On Kornfield’s last night on earth, he sat by the bunk of Aleksandr Solzhenitysn and shared his faith in Christ with the Russian novelist. Later that same night Boris Kornfield was beaten to death with a mallet. Some think he was murdered by prison guards and others think inmates.

In the late 50’s Solzhenitsyn was freed from prison and he lived the last three decades of his life in freedom. I don’t think Solzhenitsyn had any desire to go back to prison but he did realize his prison suffering forged his character and his faith.

After the crisis, whatever it may be, when we are sufficiently crushed: Christ steps out of the shadows into the light and begins to comfort and to teach. Pride is our enemy and humiliation becomes our friend because it makes us teachable. It reminds me of a little poem I heard when I was a child…

I walked a mile with pleasure, she chatted all the way

But I was none the wiser for what she had to say.

I walked a mile with sorrow and never a word said she,

But Oh the things that I did learn with sorrow walked with me.

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  • Today we pray for the WORLD, not the system but the people who need Christ.
  • Regular schedule tonight….supper at 5:30, AWANA at 6:15 and the GATHERING at 6:30. I don’t know if I will get to attend or not; it depends.
  • GOLDEN GIRLS is on for Saturday.

Keri and Kane

Crisis

April 6, 2015

Celebrate Jesus.crimsonjpg

SCRIPTURE

Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.

~James 1:2, NLT

QUOTE

We learn more from life’s trials than we do life’s triumphs.

~Chip Ingram

my thoughts red

The Chinese word for “crisis” (simplified Chinese: 危机; traditional Chinese: 危機; pinyin: wēijī) is frequently invoked in Western motivational speaking because the word is composed of two Chinese characters that can represent “danger” and “opportunity“. Some linguist accuse motivational speakers of taking liberties with the word.

One such case was in a speech by President John F. Kennedy, in Indianapolis on April 12, 1959. In his speech, Kennedy said that, “The Chinese use two brush strokes to write the word ‘crisis.’ One brush stroke stands for danger; the other for opportunity.”

The word “crisis” (wēijī) consists of two syllables that are written with two separate characters, wēi and jī. . . . While it is true that wēijī does indeed mean “crisis” and that the wēi does convey the notion of “danger,” the jī syllable of wēijī does not literally mean opportunity but it can be translated “Critical or defining moment” which is most always an opportunity.

This same concept is what James has in mind, we should consider trouble [various trials] as opportunities for ministry, spiritual advancement and joy. How did Job respond when the bottom fell out of his world? He did respond nobly with sincere worship but you would not consider his first response one of ecstatic joy. Generally, when trouble comes our way, our first response is and intense struggle with our faith that may lend itself to doubt, discouragement and despair. With time we begin to see God at work in our crisis and we begin learning things that we could never understand a part from the crisis. The joy of the crisis is like the sonic boom that follows a super sonic jet. You see the plane long before you hear the sound. Our first response to crisis will most likely be fear but the joy is coming. In Psalm 30:5 David stated the principle like this: Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.

I hate to agree with a democrat but I’m going to concur with Kennedy, a crisis is a critical point that presents both danger and opportunity. Remember the old adage, “Don’t waste your sorrows.”

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  • It is good to be back on line after being down for two weeks. I am no where near 100% but I am better PTL.  I hope this is not a premature celebration but Lord willing I will be blogging daily again: at least that is my prayer. I was able to attend the second service yesterday and see all the babies and children in their Easter outfits. I enjoyed the Praise and worship: The Band, David, the Choir and the Praise and Motion Team were fantastic. I thought Joe David had a great message and I enjoyed the entire service and that includes the offerings.
  • At this time we do not know what the treatment will be for the back and sciatic nerve. They may do an MRI next week. I stay on the steroids this week. Barring a miraculous turn around, I doubt that I can be back in the pulpit for a couple of more weeks. We will play it by ear.

Fear Not, Falter Not

June 29, 2013

Prayer For REVIVAL in America

Prayer For REVIVAL in America

SCRIPTURE: “Fear not, falter not before this vast army; it is for God, not for you, to fight them.” {II Chronicles 20:15, Moffatt}

QUOTE: Show me someone who has done something worthwhile, and I’ll show you someone who overcame overwhelming odds.  ~Doctor Lou

COMMENTARY: Life can present some intimidating circumstances; things that leave us feeling overwhelmed, shocked and afraid. When Jehoshaphat got word that three nations had allied against him, he was afraid. Three to one has never been good odds. Adding insult to injury is the fact that the three nations were kinsfolk. Ammon and Moab were descendants of Lot and the Edomites were Esau’s descendants. The LORD did not permit Israel to attack any of the three as they came out of Egypt because they were relatives. So Jehoshaphat is both shocked and afraid: he feels both betrayed and bullied.

What do we do in the midst of intimidating circumstances? How do we cope when the odds are against us? First we give thanks that we have the scripture to guide us. As we look into the word of God, we see clearly what our game plan should be.

  1. We pray! Jehoshaphat not only prayed privately, he called a national prayer meeting. He decreed a day of prayer and fasting for all Judah and had them gather in Jerusalem for a prayer conference. So when faced with intimidating circumstances, we pray and there is always added power when we come together to pray.
  2. We seek a word from the LORD. In Jehoshaphat’s case, the word came from a Levite named Jehaziel [Beheld of God], a descendant of Asaph who was David’s minister of music in Jerusalem. Asaph served David and Solomon in leading the praise and worship at Jerusalem. I don’t know if Jehaziel was the Minister of Music or just a member of the Levitical Choir but God spoke to him and gave him a message for king and country: “Fear not, falter not, before this vast horde. The LORD is going to fight this battle and you will be His witnesses.”
  3. We obey! We do exactly as the LORD commands.  Jehaziel said,  “The Battle is the LORD’s”but that did not mean that the men of Judah could stay at home, watch TV and play video games. God’s demands that we exercise our faith and we cannot be His witnesses unless we join the battle and see His salvation first hand. Obedience is our way of demonstrating our faith. Jehoshaphat lead his army to battle but he had the choir in front praising God for the victory. Putting your choir in front of your infantry, demonstrates a lot of faith, amen!
  4. We stand! Note verse 17… Take your positions; then stand still and watch the Lord’s victory. He is with you, O people of Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid or discouraged. Go out against them tomorrow, for the Lord is with you!”
  5. We gather the spoils! If we are faithful to pray, seek God’s will, demonstrate our faith in obedience and take a stand…God will give victory and we will be busy gathering the “Enormous booty” [Moffatt]. It took the men of Judah three days to gather the spoils of war and they never fired a shot. The three armies killed each other before the men of Judah arrived.

EXTRA: God is good. We got our Marine home and then our cheerleaders had to ship out for a month. Smyrna, Tennessee is a beautiful town but I prefer Hartselle, actually, I prefer Danville. The traffic on I-65 was heavy I thought but on I-24 it was much worse. I was actually glad to get back to I-65. Another beautiful day weather wise. My new tomatoes are looking good. If anyone is running short on mosquitos we have a million or two we will share. All the rain water I have saved is not helping. I have to be sprayed up to go to the garden.

Remember a couple of changes tomorrow: NO DEACON’S MEETING but I do want to meet with MATTHEWS  at 8:45 in Sanctuary. I’ll have donuts there about 8:30.

The Bailey sisters are having a yard sale at IRONMAN TODAY! Mylee and Ryder are running a lemonaid stand and selling BIG MAMA BROWNIES. I know that would appreciate the business and they need the money.

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This poor cat need reviving! Amen!

This poor cat need reviving! Amen!