Friday, January 27, 2012

Choosing Life

Choose life that you and your descendants may live. Deuteronomy 30:19b (NKJV)

“Do you like carrots best?” my luncheon friend asked. My plate was almost empty except for the shining orange spears. She did not like them, and thought I should eat them first. I used to save the best for last, until I wondered, “Why spend life making ‘second best’ choices?” Those who choose the best first always have full enjoyment of what is available. When they choose again, they get to enjoy the best of the rest.

Moses explained that the Lord wanted the Israelites, His people, to choose the best, to choose life, and continue living in the Promised Land. The Israelites knew that God gave Adam and Eve the very best of everything in the Garden of Eden. Even after that catastrophic disobedience, the Lord wanted His people to choose life by practicing worship and obedience.

They tried, and when Solomon built the first temple, it contained the very best workmanship. After many failures and when the temple was destroyed, two later temples were built, each smaller than the previous one. These two were still worthy because they also contained the best work of the artisans.

Still, we, His people, needed more help, a Savior who wanted us to make the best choice first because the sooner someone chooses life, the longer he or she will be able to enjoy God's best, a life blessed with the Holy Spirit's guidance and presence. There is no reason to save the best ‘till last. When we love God, we choose life first.

Thanks be to God who loved us so much that he sent his Son to show us the way to choose life and be able to have it more abundantly.

© 2011 V. Colclasure

Thursday, January 19, 2012

What Are You Doing Now?

The Kingdom of Heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom…five were wise…five were foolish. The wise took oil in their vessels. The foolish virgins’ lamps went out. Matthew 25:1-8 (NKJV)

Recently men have been predicted the end of the world, and each prophesized date has come and passed.

It’s a joke to unbelievers. Some communicate with each other on personal web sites asking, “Are you left behind too? Let’s meet at Pete’s and party.”

My Christian sisters and I were discussing this situation. Someone presented the question,“If the end were to comes today, what do you want to be caught doing?” My friend, Emmy said, “I’d like to say, ‘what I’m doing right now.’”

People can count all the last days predicted in the Book of Daniel, or check off all the catastrophes listed in Revelation. But Jesus tells us “You do not know the day or hour in which the Son of Man is coming”. (Matt 25:13) Collecting all the negative events of the end times is like worshiping a false god. Exalting them above Jesus is misplaced worship.

What would Jesus like to find us doing: Feeding the hungry; giving water to the thirsty; visiting the sick and the prisoners; or clothing the naked? “What you did for the least of these, you did for me.” (Matt. 25:34-40).

No one knows the day. Let’s take Emmy’s advice and pray that “what I’m doing right now,” would always be a good thing. “Well done, good and faithful servant… Enter into the joy of your Lord.” (Matt. 25.21)

Dear Lord. Thank you for today. How can I serve you, while I wait for You.

©2011 Lois Gosley

Friday, January 13, 2012


For he has said: "I will by no means leave you nor by any means forsake you. Hebrews 13:5b (NWT)

I remember when young children had favorite heroes to imitate. As a pre-teen, my hero rode a palomino stallion named "Trigger," wore a white hat and had a dog named "Bullet." Roy Rogers was known for his Christian morals.

As I grew older my hero changed. I still liked Roy, but a new hero filled my mind and heart. I began drawing His face on the outside of my notebooks like a star-struck kid. When classmates asked what I was drawing, I told them, with a deep warmness in my heart, that it was a picture of Jesus. He was my "forever hero."

As a child and young adult, I noticed others who followed self-indulgent, godless people and embraced worldly ways. My conscience would not permit me to join them. I grew closer to my hero, Jesus, Whom I worship daily. He, unlike human heroes, will never leave me nor forsake me.

Throughout the years since my childhood, I hung on to my hero. He got me through the difficult first years of marriage and through the births of three children. He strengthened me through the sometimes tumultuous years of raising them. He was and is still my closest friend.

Thank You, Father, for always being the same, yesterday, today and forever. (Hebrews 13:8) I know that you will never abandon me to the wiles of the world. Amen.

(c) 2012 E. Bonnie Ryan

Friday, January 6, 2012

Artist to painter

. . . whatever you do, do it all to the glory of God. I Corinthians 10:31 NAS

I have an artist friend whose specialty is large expanses of earth and sky that draw you into the landscape. He is so blessed with talent that the strokes of his brush leave behind the scent of ocean waves at sunrise or the mossy dampness of a lush green forest as you stand admiring his large canvases.

One day I watched as he painted the deck outside. His grip on the brush was still that of an artist. Each brushstroke was carefully placed, smoothing and perfecting the wooden surface as he went. He did not paint in a hurry to get the job done. Instead, he worked with the care of an artist giving his best to the task that was before him. It didn’t matter that this work would not hang in a gallery beside his other paintings. The attention to detail was the same.

I thought of Jesus working as a carpenter, patiently shaping the wood—sawdust sprinkling his toes—yet knowing that He had a much greater purpose to fill. But for that point in time he was content, dedicating His best to the task that was before Him.

Nurse, wife, mother, writer, nanny, friend, disciple of Christ—I hope and pray that as I go about this daily journey I will give my very best in all I do, no matter how insignificant it may appear. I want to strive to accomplish everything so that others see, not me, but Christ in me and God will be given all of the glory.

Father, Help us to embrace each task as if we were doing it especially for You. Amen.

© 2011 Bonnie Mae Evans

Monday, January 2, 2012

Don't Give Up

Her children rise up and call her blessed. Proverbs 31:28 (NIV)

"On March 7, 1774, the British passed the Boston Port Act, closing the harbor to all commerce to punish the colonists for the Boston Tea Party. The surrounding towns rallied to their aid by secretly sending food to the inhabitants of Boston.

Colonel William Prescott, wrote:

Providence has placed you where you must stand the first shock... if we submit to these regulations, all is gone. ….. Now if we should give up, can our children rise up and call us blessed? ”(American Minute, Bill Federer)

This is not the time to give up. Our children depend on us to stand against government regulations and cultural tolerances that impede our religious freedoms, weakening our Christian foundation. Unifying the community of believers to act and affirming the teachings of Christ in our homes will make a difference.

On the surface, we do the right things as a Christian family. We attend church and serve in ministry. As an author and Bible teacher, I pray, read God’s Word, give tithes, and help the poor. Many have called me “blessed”, but, what about my children? With all that I do, are my children realizing a Divine purpose in their lives so they know who they are and why they were created? This is a challenging question and my answer is sure, I will fight the good fight of faith. We are determined this New Year to raise our children with a focused Christian culture, so they will not be swept away by the world’s seduction. Will you join us?

God help us to teach our children as you commanded our ancestors, so the next generation will know you, Lord and trust in You. Psalms 78:5-7 (NIV)

©2011 Danielle Martin Moffett

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Fresh Start

Of course, my friends, I really do not think that I have already won it; the one thing I do, however, is to forget what is behind me and do my best to reach what is ahead. Philippians 3:13 (GNT)

Is there anyone who, like me, is glad to see 2011 end and is looking forward to a fresh start in 2012?

2011 was a year of purging, shifting and preparation—in the spiritual, as well as in the natural. We will never forget the monster tornadoes, historic floods, massive wildfires, the tsunami and the East Coast Earthquake.

Like physical storms, the storms of life are frightening, painful and confusing. They may be out of our control, but they serve a purpose: announcing change or growth. A new season, a new beginning, a fresh start. Just as the rainbow symbolizes not only the passing of the storm, but the gift of the storm, New Year represents a gift, too—having the chance to start again, the beginning of a new season. Some use it to make resolutions, establish goals, start projects or make commitments to change negative habits.

What do you want to change this year? Lose weight? Get out of debt? Read the Bible daily and pray more? Watch less television? Accomplishing any goal requires keeping focus. It also requires forgiving, forgetting and letting go of the past. Let’s leave the past behind and reach forward to what is ahead.

Are you ready for a fresh start? Okay . . . ready . . . set . . . reach!

Thank you, Jesus, for a New Year and the opportunity for a fresh start. The past is washed away, and I won’t look back! I’m moving forward in your name. Amen

© 2011 Wanda Currie