Saturday, December 3, 2011

A Re-post From Joe Stowell of Our Daily Bread


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December 3, 2011 — by Joe Stowell
Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. —Luke 12:34
Bible in a year:
Ezekiel 45-46; 1 John 2

When our kids were young, my wife Martie and I enjoyed family vacations in Florida visiting our parents. It was especially wonderful to be there in the warmth for a brief respite from the Michigan wind-chill factor. I couldn’t wait to just relax on the beach with a good book. But my kids had other ideas. They wanted my help building sandcastles. Reluctantly, I’d get up to help, only to be quickly consumed by the project at hand. Before I knew it, I had spent hours creating an impressive castle—not thinking that it was only a matter of time until the tide would wash away all my hard work.

We often make the same mistake in life, spending lots of time and energy building our own little “castles” of stuff and basking in our accomplishments. It all may seem worthwhile, but in the end it’s worthless.

In Luke 12, Jesus challenged His followers to sell their possessions and give to the poor, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (v.34). In other words, the way we spend our time and resources says a lot about our eternal perspective. As the old hymn goes, “Only one life, ’twill soon be past; only what’s done for Christ will last.” So what have you done today that will last for eternity?

Who measures how we’ve done in life
And judges our success?
Our God, who gives rewards to those
Who live in righteousness. —Branon

God wants you to spend your time and treasure building His kingdom, not your own.

Re-posted From Joe Stowell of Our Daily Bread

Friday, December 2, 2011

A Re-post From Bill Crowder of Our Daily Bread

Never Too Busy

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December 2, 2011 — by Bill Crowder
Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth. —Psalm 145:18
Bible in a year:
Ezekiel 42-44; 1 John 1

College students rent a house from my sister and her husband. One night, a thief attempted to break in. When the young woman living there called the police to tell them that a break-in was in progress, the operator responded in an unusual way: “You’ll have to call back in the morning. We’re just too busy right now.” That response was very disturbing! The young woman had done the right thing by calling the police, but for some reason her plea for help was disregarded. That kind of indifference is upsetting.

But indifference never happens when we go to God in prayer. We may not always feel that God is listening, but He is. He cares, and He will respond. The Bible reminds us that we can take comfort in the fact that our God is deeply concerned with what concerns our hearts: “The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth” (Ps. 145:18). When we call out to Him, we will never get a disinterested response.

Rather than distancing Himself from us when we cry to Him, our heavenly Father draws close to us in our time of need. He is never too busy for His child’s prayers—He hears us when we call.

For answered prayer we thank You, Lord,
We know You’re always there
To hear us when we call on You;
We’re grateful for Your care. —Branon

You’ll never get a busy signal on the prayer line to heaven.

Re-posted From Bill Crowder of Our Daily Bread

Thursday, December 1, 2011

A Re-post From Julie Ackerman Link of Our Daily Bread

Advent Themes

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December 1, 2011 — by Julie Ackerman Link
Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
Rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. —1 Peter 1:13
Bible in a year:
Ezekiel 40-41; 2 Peter 3

I believe that all Scripture is related and all Scripture is relevant. Nevertheless, I was surprised when my November reading in the book of 1 Peter touched on all four themes of Advent—that period of time on the church calendar when many Christians prepare to celebrate the first coming of Christ while looking forward to His second coming. During Advent, we emphasize hope, peace, joy, and love, which God sent with Christ.

HOPE. We have an inheritance reserved in heaven, a living hope through the resurrection of Christ from the dead (1 Peter 1:3-5).

PEACE. We will love life and see good days if we turn from evil and do good and if we seek peace, for the Lord watches over the righteous and hears their prayers (3:10-12).

JOY. We have inexpressible joy even though we have trials because our faith is being tested and proven genuine. The end of this faith is the salvation of our souls (1:6-9).

LOVE. We can love one another with a pure heart because we have been born again through the Word of God which lives and abides forever (1:22-23).

Because Christ came the first time, we can live with hope, peace, joy, and love till He comes again.

The hope we have in Jesus Christ
Brings joy into our heart;
And when we know the love of God,
His peace He will impart. —Sper

If you’re looking for hope, peace, joy, and love this Christmas season, look to God.

Re-posted From Julie Ackerman Link of Our Daily Bread

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

A Re-post From David C. McCasland of Our Daily Bread

Actions And Results

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November 30, 2011 — by David C. McCasland
Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
If by the one man’s offense many died, much more the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abounded to many. —Romans 5:15
Bible in a year:
Ezekiel 37-39; 2 Peter 2

On November 24, 1971, a man known today as D. B. Cooper hijacked a commercial flight between Portland and Seattle by threatening to blow up the plane unless he received $200,000. After landing to receive a ransom, he ordered the plane back into the air. Then the rear stairs of the 727 aircraft were lowered, and he parachuted into the night. He was never captured, and the case is still unsolved. This act hastened the age of airport security in which trust and confidence have been replaced by suspicion and fear. What he did affected us all.

The Bible describes two actions that changed the world in a far more significant way. Through Adam’s choice, sin and death entered the world, “and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned” (Rom. 5:12). But through Christ’s sacrifice on the cross, God provided a remedy for the results of sin. “Through one man’s [Adam’s] offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s [Christ’s] righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life” (v.18).

Christ did what no one else could do when He broke the power of sin and death by His resurrection. He offers forgiveness and eternal life to all who will accept His gift. And for that, we thank Him with all our hearts.

When Adam sinned, death spread to all—
One act condemned the human race—
But Jesus’ death upon the cross
Provides mankind God’s saving grace. —Sper

The cross of Christ can cure the condemnation of Adam’s choice.

Re-posted From David C. McCasland of Our Daily Bread

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A Re-post From Dennis Fisher of Our Daily Bread

Honoring Your Parents

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November 29, 2011 — by Dennis Fisher
Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
Honor your father and mother. —Ephesians 6:2
Bible in a year:
Ezekiel 35-36; 2 Peter 1

My dad recently turned 90 years old and his physical capabilities are fading. He can still move around with his walker, but he needs someone to cook his meals and help him with other tasks.

My older brother Steve and his wife Judy lived close to him, so they decided to move in with Dad to care for him. Wanting to help in some way, my wife and I flew across the country to help out a bit by watching Dad while my brother and his wife had some time away together. We enjoyed our time with my father and were glad to ease Steve and Judy’s load—even if it was only for a few days.

The Bible says to “honor your father and mother” (Eph. 6:2). One New Testament commentary says that to honor someone is to “treat him with the deference, respect, reverence, kindness, courtesy, and obedience which his station in life . . . demands.”

For young children, this means obeying parents. For teenagers, it indicates showing respect for Mom and Dad even if you think you know more than they do. For young adults, this means including your parents in your life. And for those in middle-age and beyond, it means making sure that parents are cared for as they move into old age or their health declines.

How can you honor your parents this week?

Don’t miss the opportunity
To honor and obey
The parents God has given you—
For they’ll be gone someday. —Sper

Honoring our parents has no age limit.

Re-posted From Dennis Fisher of Our Daily Bread

Monday, November 28, 2011

A Repost From Joe Stowell of Our Daily Bread

Just Do What’s Right

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November 28, 2011 — by Joe Stowell
Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
That you may become . . . children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation. —Philippians 2:15
Bible in a year:
Ezekiel 33-34; 1 Peter 5

On a trip out of the country, I happened to meet an attorney who was from my hometown in New Jersey. We were surprised at how much we had in common. In the course of the conversation, he asked, “Did you say your name was Stillwell?” I said, “No, it’s Stowell.” He then mentioned that he had a client named Stillwell. “Is it Art Stillwell?” I asked, and, to my surprise, he said yes. Art Stillwell attended my church and was an influential businessman in the community.

The attorney admitted that he had no client quite like Art. He explained that most of his clients want him to do whatever it takes to get them out of their problems, but Art was different. Whenever he asked Art what to do in any given situation, Art always replied, “Just do what’s right!” Obviously it had made an impression on the attorney.

Yielding to Christ in all of our desires and decisions regardless of the outcome is what sets us apart in a world full of people consumed by their own interests. When we live blameless lives “without fault”—courageously reflecting the integrity, love, and grace of Jesus—we clearly “shine as lights in the world” (Phil. 2:15).

So, if you want to light up your world in a compelling way, just do what’s right!

Dim not, little candle,
Show Jesus through me!
Glow brightly till others
The Light clearly see! —Adams

Light up your world by reflecting the light of Jesus.

Reposted From Joe Stowell of Our Daily Bread

Sunday, November 27, 2011

A Repost From Dave Branon of Our Daily Bread

Feeling Poor?

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November 27, 2011 — by Dave Branon
Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
Read: Psalm 86
I am poor and needy. —Psalm 86:1
Bible in a year:
Ezekiel 30-32; 1 Peter 4

In one way or another, we can all relate to Psalm 86:1 where David says, “I am poor and needy.” Even the richest among us should understand that poverty and need relate more to the spirit than to the wallet. When billionaire Rich DeVos speaks to groups he often says, “I’m just a sinner saved by grace.”

Psalm 86 tells us that the help God provides is not measured by a monetary ledger sheet. When we acknowledge that we are poor and needy, it’s not so God will lavish material riches on us. No, we do so to open the door to other, more valuable treasures.

Here’s what God does for the poor and needy. He will “preserve” our lives and “save” all those who trust in Him (v.2). He will be “merciful” and “ready to forgive” (vv.3,5). He will listen to and answer prayer (vv.6-7).

But we’re not to take God’s blessings without giving back. We have a responsibility to learn God’s ways, walk in His truth, “fear [God’s] name,” praise the Lord, and “glorify [His] name” (vv.11-12).

Do you consider yourself among the “poor and needy”? If so, welcome to the club. Let’s not forget all the spiritual blessings God has for us and the godly response we should have toward His generosity.

We’re thankful for the blessings, Lord,
You give us day by day;
Now help us show our gratitude
By walking in Your way. —Sper

The poorest man is he whose only wealth is money.

Reposted From Dave Branon of Our Daily Bread

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