Monday, March 23, 2009
Bob and the Lord stood by to observe a baseball game. The Lord's team was
playing Satan's team. The Lord's team was at bat, the score was tied zero to
zero, and it was the bottom of the 9th inning with two outs.
They continued to watch as a batter stepped up to the plate whose name was
Love. Love swung at the first pitch and hit a single, because Love never
fails. The next batter was named Faith, who also got a single because Faith
works with Love.
The next batter up was named Godly wisdom. Satan wound up and threw the
first pitch. Godly Wisdom looked it over and let it pass: Ball one. Three
more pitches and Godly Wisdom walked, because Godly wisdom never swings at
what Satan throws. The bases were loaded.
The Lord then turned to Bob and told him He was now going to bring in His
star player. Up to the plate stepped Grace. Bob said, "He sure doesn't look
like much!" Satan's whole team relaxed when they saw Grace. Thinking he had
won the game, Satan wound up and fired his first pitch. To the shock of
everyone, Grace hit the ball harder than anyone had ever seen. But Satan was
not worried; his center fielder let very few get by. He went up for the
ball, but it went right through his glove, hit him on the head and sent him
crashing on the ground; then it continued over the fence for a home run!
The Lord's team won.
The Lord then asked Bob if he knew why Love, Faith, and Godly Wisdom could
get on base but could not win the game. Bob answered that he did not know
The Lord explained, "If your love, faith and wisdom had won the game you
would think you had done it by yourself. Love, faith and wisdom will get you
on base, but only My Grace can get you home. My Grace is the one thing Satan
-- Author Unknown
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
The value of time
John C. Maxwell
"The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all." – Ecclesiastes 9:11
Time is valuable. Psychiatrist and author M. Scott Peck said, "Until you value yourself, you won't value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it."
In What to Do Between Birth and Death, Charles Spezzano says that people don't pay for things with money; they pay for them with time. If you say to yourself, In five years, I'll have put enough away to buy that vacation house, then what you are really saying is that the house will cost you five years—one-twelfth of your adult life. "The phrase spending your time is not a metaphor," said Spezzano. "It's how life works."
Instead of thinking about what you do and what you buy in terms of money, think about them in terms of time. Think about it. What is worth spending your life on? Seeing your work in that light just may change the way you manage your time.
* * *
1. Wake Up !!
Decide to have a good day.
'Today is the day the Lord hath made; let us rejoice and be glad in it'
2. Dress Up !!
The best way to dress up is to put on a smile. A smile is an inexpensive way
to improve your looks.
'The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at outward
appearance; but the Lord looks at the heart.' I Samuel 16:7
3 Shut Up!!
Say nice things and learn to listen. God gave us two ears and one mouth, so
He must have meant for us to do twice as much listening as talking.
'He who guards his lips guards his soul.' Proverbs 13:3
4. Stand Up!!...
For what you believe in. Stand for something or you will fall for anything..
'Let us not be weary in doing good; for at the proper time, we will reap a
harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do
good...' Galatians 6:9-10
5. Look Up !!...
To the Lord.
'I can do everything through Christ who strengthens me.' Philippians 4:13
6. Reach Up !!...
For something higher.
'Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not unto your own
understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge Him, And He will direct your
path.' Proverbs 3:5-6
7. Lift Up !!...
'Do not worry about anything; Instead PRAY ABOUT EVERYTHING.' Philippians
I thought this was mighty special, just like you.
Pass this on and brighten someone's day, and remember:
God answers Knee-Mail.
-- Author Unknown
Monday, March 16, 2009
A time comes in your life when you finally get it...when, in the midst of
all your fears and insanity, you stop dead in your tracks and somewhere the
voice inside your head cries out - ENOUGH!
Enough fighting and crying or struggling to hold on. And, like a child
quieting down after a blind tantrum, your sobs begin to subside, you shudder
once or twice, you blink back your tears and begin to look at the world
through new eyes.
This is your awakening.
You realize it's time to stop hoping and waiting for something to
change...or for happiness, safety and security to come galloping over the
You come to terms with the fact that neither of you is Prince Charming or
Cinderella and that in the real world there aren't always fairy tale endings
(or beginnings for that matter) and that any guarantee of "happily ever
after" must begin with you...and in the process a sense of serenity is born
You awaken to the fact that you are not perfect and that not everyone will
always love, appreciate or approve of who or what you are ... and that's OK.
They are entitled to their own views and opinions.
And you learn the importance of loving and championing yourself...and in the
process a sense of new found confidence is born of self-approval.
You stop complaining and blaming other people for the things they did to you
(or didn't do for you) and you learn that the only thing you can really
count on is the unexpected.
You learn that people don't always say what they mean or mean what they say
and that not everyone will always be there for you and that it's not always
So, you learn to stand on your own and to take care of yourself...and in the
process a sense of safety and security is born of self-reliance.
You stop judging and pointing fingers and you begin to accept people as they
are and to overlook their shortcomings and human frailties..and in the
process a sense of peace and contentment is born of forgiveness.
You realize that much of the way you view yourself, and the world around
you, is as a result of all the messages and opinions that have been
ingrained into your psyche.
And you begin to sift through all the junk you've been fed about how you
should behave, how you should look, how much you should weigh, what you
should wear, what you should do for a living, how much money you should
make, what you should drive, how and where you should live, who you should
marry, the importance of having and raising children, and what you owe your
parents, family, and friends.
You learn to open up to new worlds and different points of view.
And you begin reassessing and redefining who you are and what you really
You learn the difference between wanting and needing and you begin to
discard the doctrines and values you've outgrown, or should never have
bought into to begin with ... and in the process you learn to go with your
You learn that it is truly in giving that we receive.
And that there is power and glory in creating and contributing and you stop
maneuvering through life merely as a "consumer" looking for your next fix.
You learn that principles such as honesty and integrity are not the outdated
ideals of a bygone era but the mortar that holds together the foundation
upon which you must build a life.
You learn that you don't know everything, it's not your job to save the
world and that you can't teach a pig to sing.
You learn to distinguish between guilt and responsibility and the importance
of setting boundaries and learning to say NO.
You learn that the only cross to bear is the one you choose to carry and
that martyrs get burned at the stake.
Then you learn about love.
How to love, how much to give in love, when to stop giving and when to walk
You learn to look at relationships as they really are and not as you would
have them be.
You stop trying to control people, situations and outcomes.
And you learn that alone does not mean lonely.
You also stop working so hard at putting your feelings aside, smoothing
things over and ignoring your needs.
You learn that feelings of entitlement are perfectly OK....and that it is
your right to want things and to ask for the things you want ... and that
sometimes it is necessary to make demands.
You come to the realization that you deserve to be treated with love,
kindness, sensitivity and respect and you won't settle for less.
And you learn that your body really is your temple.
And you begin to care for it and treat it with respect.
You begin to eat a balanced diet, drink more water, and take more time to
You learn that being tired fuels doubt, fear, and uncertainty and so you
take more time to rest.
And, just as food fuels the body, laughter fuels our soul.
So you take more time to laugh and to play.
You learn that, for the most part, you get in life what you believe you
deserve...and that much of life truly is a self-fulfilling prophecy.
You learn that anything worth achieving is worth working for and that
wishing for something to happen is different than working toward making it
More importantly, you learn that in order to achieve success you need
direction, discipline and perseverance.
You also learn that no one can do it all alone...and that it's OK to risk
asking for help.
You learn the only thing you must truly fear is the greatest robber baron of
all: FEAR itself.
You learn to step right into and through your fears because you know that
whatever happens you can handle it and to give in to fear is to give away
the right to live life on your own terms.
And you learn to fight for your life and not to squander it living under a
cloud of impending doom.
You learn that life isn't always fair, you don't always get what you think
you deserve and that sometimes bad things happen to unsuspecting, good
On these occasions you learn not to personalize things.
You learn that God isn't punishing you or failing to answer your prayers.
It's just life happening.
And you learn to deal with evil in its most primal state - the ego.
You learn that negative feelings such as anger, envy and resentment must be
understood and redirected or they will suffocate the life out of you and
poison the universe that surrounds you.
You learn to admit when you are wrong and to build bridges instead of walls.
You learn to be thankful and to take comfort in many of the simple things we
take for granted, things that millions of people upon the earth can only
dream about: a full refrigerator, clean running water, a soft warm bed, a
long hot shower.
Slowly, you begin to take responsibility for yourself by yourself and you
make yourself a promise to never betray yourself and to never, ever settle
for less than your heart's desire.
And you hang a wind chime outside your window so you can listen to the wind.
And you make it a point to keep smiling, to keep trusting, and to stay open
to every wonderful possibility.
Finally, with courage in your heart and God by your side you take a stand,
you take a deep breath, and you begin to design the life you want to live as
best you can.
-- Author Unknown
Twenty years ago, I drove a cab for a living. It was a cowboy's life, a life
for someone who wanted no boss. What I didn't realize was that it was also a
ministry. Because I drove the night shift, my cab became a moving
confessional. Passengers climbed in, sat behind me in total anonymity, and
told me about their lives. I encountered people whose lives amazed me,
ennobled me, made me laugh and weep. But none touched me more than a woman I
picked up late one August night.
I responded to a call from a small brick fourplex in a quiet part of town.
I assumed I was being sent to pick up some partiers, or someone who had just
had a fight with a lover, or a worker heading to an early shift at some
factory in the industrial part of town. When I arrived at 2:30 a.m., the
building was dark except for a single light in a ground floor window.
Under these circumstances, many drivers would just honk once or twice, wait
a minute, then drive away. But I had seen too many impoverished people who
depended on taxis as their only means of transportation. Unless a situation
smelled of danger, I always went to the door. This passenger might be
someone who needed my assistance, I reasoned to myself. So I walked to the
door and knocked.
"Just a minute," answered a frail, elderly voice. I could hear something
being dragged across the floor. After a long pause, the door opened. A small
woman in her 80s stood before me. She was wearing a print dress and a
pillbox hat with a veil pinned on it, like somebody out of a 1940's movie.
By her side was a small nylon suitcase. The apartment looked as if no one
had lived in it for years. All the furniture was covered with sheets. There
were no clocks on the walls, no knick-knacks or utensils on the counters. In
the corner was a cardboard box filled with photos and glassware.
"Would you carry my bag out to the car?" she said.
I took the suitcase to the cab, then returned to assist the woman. She took
my arm and we walked slowly toward the curb. She kept thanking me for my
"It's nothing," I told her. "I just try to treat my passengers the way I
would want my mother treated."
"Oh, you're such a good boy," she said.
When we got in the cab, she gave me an address, then asked, "Could you drive
"It's not the shortest way," I answered quickly.
"Oh, I don't mind," she said. "I'm in no hurry. I'm on my way to a hospice".
I looked in the rearview mirror. Her eyes were glistening.
"I don't have any family left," she continued. "The doctor says I don't have
I quietly reached over and shut off the meter.
"What route would you like me to take?" I asked.
For the next two hours, we drove through the city. She showed me the
building where she had once worked as an elevator operator. We drove through
the neighborhood where she and her husband had lived when they were
newlyweds. She had me pull up in front of a furniture warehouse that had
once been a ballroom where she had gone dancing as a girl. Sometimes she'd
ask me to slow in front of a particular building or corner and would sit
staring into the darkness, saying nothing.
As the first hint of sun was creasing the horizon, she suddenly said, "I'm
tired. Let's go now."
We drove in silence to the address she had given me. It was a low building,
like a small convalescent home, with a driveway that passed under a portico.
Two orderlies came out to the cab as soon as we pulled up. They were
solicitous and intent, watching her every move. They must have been
expecting her. I opened the trunk and took the small suitcase to the door.
The woman was already seated in a wheelchair.
"How much do I owe you?" she asked, reaching into her purse.
"Nothing," I said.
"You have to make a living," she answered.
"There are other passengers," I responded.
Almost without thinking, I bent and gave her a hug. She held onto me
"You gave an old woman a little moment of joy," she said. "Thank you."
I squeezed her hand, then walked into the dim morning light. Behind me, a
door shut. It was the sound of the closing of a life.
I didn't pick up any more passengers that shift. I drove aimlessly, lost in
thought. For the rest of that day, I could hardly talk. What if that woman
had gotten an angry driver, or one who was impatient to end his shift? What
if I had refused to take the run, or had honked once, then driven away? On a
quick review, I don't think that I have done very many more important things
in my life.
We're conditioned to think that our lives revolve around great moments. But
great moments often catch us unaware - beautifully wrapped in what others
may consider small ones.
-- Author Unknown
Friday, March 13, 2009
By Dr. Michael A. Halleen
"We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. . . . (Let us) use it in proportion to (our) faith." (Romans 12:6)
Alexander Borodin was a nineteenth century Russian composer, a member of "The Mighty Handful," a group of that nation's five leading composers dedicated to producing a distinctly Russian music. His opera, Prince Igor, is thought by some to have been his most significant work.
Borodin, however, always considered himself no more than a part-time musician—a "Sunday composer," as he called himself. His training and professional career were in organic chemistry. He worked as a researcher in that field, writing scholarly articles and delivering lectures in Russian universities and throughout Western Europe. But on weekends, as a hobby, he wrote string quartets and symphonic poems—and Prince Igor. It's that music that became his legacy to the world. Likewise . . .
- Socrates was a stonemason who made a good honest, living. But he was a curious man, and in his off hours he asked questions and challenged people to think. Today he's remembered as the founder of Western philosophical thought.
- Alexander Graham Bell was a teacher whose wife was nearly deaf, and at least in part as an effort to assist her to hear better, he invented the telephone. What started as weekend tinkering to solve a domestic communication problem revolutionized communication for all.
- The Wright brothers built bicycles in Ohio, but when business was slow they fiddled around with the idea of flying. It was just a sideline. Then came that December day in Kitty Hawk, and the Wrights would forever be associated with flight.
- Jimmy Carter was, in many ways, an undistinguished, garden-variety U.S. president. Since leaving office, however, he has achieved greatness in still another career as an international diplomat and humanitarian.
The gifts that lie within many are too great to be confined to a single avenue of expression. The interests that drive some spirits are too varied and rich to be satisfied with punching the same clock for forty years. And, for a certainty, the needs of the world go well beyond the contribution any of us can make to meet them in a mere eight hours per day. We need more "Sunday composers."
Are there dreams still hidden in you? What are you doing next weekend?
After twenty years of shaving himself every morning, a man in a small Southern town decided he had enough. He told his wife that he intended to let the local barber shave him each day. He put on his hat and coat and went to the barber shop, which was owned by the pastor of the town's Baptist Church. The barber's wife, Grace, was working that day, so she performed the task. Grace shaved him and sprayed him with lilac water, and said, "That will be $20."
The man thought the price was a bit high, but he paid the bill and went to work. The next morning the man looked in the mirror, and his face was as smooth as it had been when he left the barber shop the day before.
Not bad, he thought. At least I don't need to get a shave every day. The next morning, the man's face was still smooth. Two weeks later, the man was still unable to find any trace of whiskers on his face. It was more than he could take, so he returned to the barber shop.
"I thought $20 was high for a shave", he told the barber's wife, "but you must have done a great job. It's been two weeks and my whiskers still haven't started growing back."
The expression on her face didn't even change, expecting his comment. She responded, "You were shaved by Grace and once shaved, always shaved!"
-- Author Unknown
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Don't grieve for me for now I'm free,
I'm following the path God laid for me.
I took His hand when I heard Him call,
I turned my back and left it all.
I could not stay another day,
To laugh, to love, to work or play.
Tasks left undone must stay that way,
I found that peace at the close of the day.
If my parting has left a void,
Then fill it with remembered joy.
A friendship shared, a laugh, a kiss,
Ah yes, these things I too will miss.
But be not burdened with times of sorrow,
For I wish you the sunshine of tomorrow.
My life's been full. I've savored much,
Good friends, good times and loved ones'
Perhaps my time seemed all too brief
Don't lengthen it now with undue grief.
Lift up your hearts and share with me.
God wanted me now. He set me free!
"Man is born for trouble" (Job 5:7). There is no way to avoid or escape this common condition of mankind. As we continue to look at Joseph's life, we get a glimpse of the anchor that held him steady while, one after another, the waves of affliction rolled over him.
When Joseph was a teenager, he was given two dreams about the Lord's future plans for his life. They revealed that he would one day be in a place of authority and honor, and his family would bow down to him. Scripture had not yet been written in those days, and the Lord would sometimes speak to men in their dreams.
Previously, God had spoken to Jacob in a dream and given him a promise (Gen. 28:10-16). And now his son was hearing from the Lord in the same way. Joseph followed his father's example of faith and believed the message.
The Lord knew that Joseph was going to need a promise to get him through the difficulty that would soon follow. God's Word to him was his anchor. During all the trials, Joseph kept on believing that the Lord would fulfill His promise. He focused on the faithfulness of the God, not on his circumstances.
When the Lord speaks to our hearts through Scripture, we can hold onto what He says as an anchor for our souls. He will keep His promises to us, just as He did for Joseph. When we focus on God and His Word, our fears will dwindle, our sense of need will diminish, and our doubts will be cleared away.
When the problems of life seem overwhelming, we need someone to come alongside and help us to see our difficulties through the eyes of our sovereign God. Joseph is just such a person. Although he lived thousands of years ago, his story still speaks to us with great insights into the Lord's purposes.
Joseph experienced a wide variety of trials--hatred, rejection, and betrayal by his brothers; loss of home, family, and freedom; false accusation and imprisonment; and the loneliness and disappointment of being forgotten. His life was a series of difficult and unfair situations, yet Scripture never records any bitterness or revenge in Joseph's responses to all these circumstances.
Though outwardly it may have seemed as if God had abandoned the young man, inwardly He was doing some awesome work in Joseph's heart. The Lord had some big plans for him, and He knew that these trials would be the most effective tools for preparing His servant for the work that lay ahead.
As Joseph responded to each situation with faith in God and diligence in every task assigned to him, one fact became obvious to all who knew him: the Lord was with Joseph (Gen. 41:38-39).
We need to remember this when we are going through hard times. The Lord is with us even when our circumstances shout that He has deserted us. We may have little control over the difficulties we face, but we each have a choice of how to respond. Joseph calls to us from a time long past, urging us to trust God.
Friday, March 6, 2009
announced in Church Services. So sit back and let us begin.....
Bertha Belch, a missionary from Africa, will be speaking tonight at
Calvary Methodist. Come hear Bertha Belch all the way from Africa.
The Fasting & Prayer Conference includes meals.
The sermon this morning: "Jesus Walks on the Water." The sermon
tonight: "Searching for Jesus."
Our youth basketball team is back in action Wednesday at 8 PM in
the recreation hall. Come out and watch us beat Christ the King.
Ladies, don't forget the rummage sale. It's a chance to get rid of
those things not worth keeping around the house. Don't forget your
The peacemaking meeting scheduled for today has been canceled
due to a conflict.
Remember in prayer the many who are sick of our community. Smile
at someone who is hard to love. Say "Hell" to someone who doesn't
care much about you.
Don't let worry kill you off - let the Church help.
Miss Charlene Mason sang "I will not pass ! this way again," giving
obvious pleasure to the congregation.
For those of you who have children and don't know it, we have a
Next Thursday there will be tryouts for the choir. They need all the
help they can get.
Barbara remains in the hospital and needs blood donors for more
transfusions. She is also having trouble sleeping and requests
tapes of Pastor Jack's sermons.
Thursday, March 5, 2009
This is a Tuit. Guard
it with your life as Tuits
are hard to come by, especially
the round ones. This is an indispen-
sable item. It will help you become
a more efficient worker. For years we
have heard people say, "I'll do it as
soon as I get a Round Tuit." Now
that you have one, you can ac-
complish all those things
you put aside until
you got a Round
There are some important things that your teachers didn't teach you in
kindergarten, and that you didn't learn anywhere in school. Following
are 10 essential rules of life:
RULE 1: Life is not fair; get used to it.
RULE 2: The world won't care about your self-esteem. The world will expect
you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.
RULE 3: You will not make $40,000 a year right out of high school. And you
won't be a vice-president with a car phone until you earn both.
RULE 4: If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss. She
doesn't have tenure.
RULE 5: Flipping burgers is NOT beneath your dignity. Your grandparents had
a different word for burger flipping; they called it opportunity.
RULE 6: If you screw up, it's not your parents' fault, so don't whine about
your mistakes. Learn from them.
RULE 7: Before you were born, your parents weren't as boring as they are
now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes, and
listening you talk about how cool you are. So before you save the rain
forest from the blood-sucking parasites of your parents'
generation, try delousing the closet in your own room.
RULE 8: Life is not divided into semesters. You don't get summers off, and
very few employers are interested in helping you find yourself. Do that on
your own time.
RULE 9: Television is not real life. In real life people actually have to
leave the coffee shop and go to jobs.
RULE 10: Be nice to nerds. Chances are you'll end up working for one.
Over time you will learn that there are a variety of "delivery systems" for
God's Word. At times you will simply HEAR the Word as someone like your
pastor speaks on Sunday. At times you might READ through large sections of
the Bible as you would an exciting novel. As you begin to grow you will
probably find yourself wanting to understand the Bible at a more significant
level, so you will begin to STUDY it like a textbook. Your study might
become so exciting that you find a verse or passage that you want to
MEMORIZE...When God begins to speak to you through the Bible you will find
yourself stopping to contemplate and reflect on what you are hearing. This
is the practice of biblical MEDITATION. These five delivery systems will
help get a handle on God's Word.
A young lady named Sally, relates an experience she had in a seminary class,
given by her teacher, Dr. Smith. She says Dr. Smith was known for his
elaborate object lessons.
One particular day, Sally walked into the seminary and knew they were in for
a fun day. On the wall was a big target and on a nearby table were many
darts. Dr. Smith told the students to draw a picture of someone that they
disliked or someone who had made them angry, and he would allow them to
throw darts at the person's picture.
Sally's girlfriend drew a picture of a girl who had stolen her boyfriend.
Another friend drew a picture of his little brother. Sally drew a picture
of a former friend, putting a great deal of detail into her drawing, even
drawing pimples on the face. Sally was pleased a the overall effect she had
The class lined up and began throwing darts, with much laughter and
hilarity. Some of the students threw their darts with such force that their
targets were ripping apart. Sally looked forward to her turn, and was
filled with disappointment when Dr. Smith, because of time limits, asked the
students to return to their seats.
As Sally sat thinking about how angry she was because she didn't have a
chance to throw any darts at her target, Dr. Smith began removing the target
from the wall.
Underneath the target was a picture of Jesus...
A complete hush fell over the room as each student viewed the mangled
picture of Jesus; holes and jagged marks covered His face and His eyes were
Dr. Smith said these words, "In as much as ye have done it unto the least of
these my brethren, ye have done it unto Me." No other words were necessary;
the tear-filled eyes of each student focused only on the picture of Christ.
"And the King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the
extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of
them, you did it to Me.' Matthew 25:40
-- Author Unknown