Friday, August 17, 2012

A Re-post From Bill Crowder of Our Daily Bread

They Are Watching

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
A professional football player’s team was having a terrible season, losing week after week. A reporter asked him how he stayed motivated to play hard and give his best even though his team lost almost every game. He responded, “My dad is watching that game. My mom is watching that game. You better believe I’m going to do my best!” He recognized that there was more at stake than just winning or losing. People were watching, and that reality always drove him to do his best.
Jesus reminded us of this reality in the early portions of His Sermon on the Mount. We should live our lives with a recognition that what we do is observed by those around us—and this visible life makes a statement about our God. He said, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven” (Matt. 5:16). How does the light of our lives shine? By bringing the heart and character of Christ into the situations that engage us every day. By showing compassion as He did for the marginalized or forgotten. By displaying concern for the Father’s name and reputation.
People are watching us. The question is, What do they see?
Show me the way, Lord, let my light shine
As an example of good to mankind.
Help them to see the patterns of Thee,
Shining in beauty, lived out in me. —Neuer
Let your light shine—whether you’re a candle in a corner or a lighthouse on a hill.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

A Re-post From Randy Kilgore of Our Daily Bread

Plugged In

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
My wife was working at home on her computer recently when she suddenly noticed her laptop battery power was low and the computer was about to shut down. The computer was plugged in, though, so it shouldn’t have been using the battery. Following the laptop cord to the extension cord, she finally noticed that the extension cord was actually plugged back into itself instead of the wall outlet! She looked at me, amused, and said, “There’s a devotional in there somewhere.”
As she said it, I was reminded of a passage of Scripture on the power of God: Isaiah 40:27-31. Isaiah identifies the true and unending Source of strength from which we must draw ours—“the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth” (v.28). Then he speaks to those whose strength is ebbing, encouraging them to wait on the Lord to find their strength renewed (vv.29-31).
Jesus spoke of us as branches abiding in Him as the Vine (John 15:4-5). It’s a parallel to Isaiah’s powerful closing, which promises that if we’re plugged into God we will “run and not be weary, . . . walk and not faint” (Isa. 40:31).
When we find ourselves weary and distressed, we need to plug into the true Source of strength and life.
We are more than conquerors
Through Him who loved us so;
The Christ who dwells within us
Is the greatest power we know. —Carmichael
The Creator of the universe knows no power failure.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

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

Hopes And Dreams

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
In 1960, everyone in the high school I attended participated in Project TALENT. For several days, we took tests that surveyed our aptitudes in academic subjects. In addition, we were asked to express our plans, hopes, and dreams for the future. What we didn’t know was that we were among 400,000 participants from 1,300 schools in the largest study of high school students ever conducted in the US. None of us involved in the study could have imagined how our lives would turn out.
The same was true for Saul of Tarsus. As a young man, his goal was to destroy the followers of Jesus (Acts 7:58–8:3; Gal. 1:13). But after his conversion, he became the apostle Paul, whose mission was to multiply them. As he journeyed to Jerusalem, facing prison and hardship, Paul said, “I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace” (Acts 20:24 niv).
When our goal is to honor the Lord, He guides and guards us each step of the way. Whatever our hopes and dreams may be, when we place them in God’s hands we know that everything, including setback or success, is under His control.
When we give our hopes and dreams to God
And then leave them in His hand,
We can trust His love and care for us
To fulfill what He has planned. —Sper
Live the Christian life in the same way you began it— by trusting Christ.

Monday, August 13, 2012

A Re-post From Cindy Hess Kasper of Our Daily Bread

Tear Down That Wall!

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
The Wall. For people living in East Germany over 50 years ago, those two words were the only ones necessary to describe the barrier erected on August 13, 1961. That date marked the beginning of the construction of a concrete barrier that separated East and West Germany. Eventually, the wall became nearly impenetrable—secured with barbed wire and armed men. But in 1989 the wall was torn down, removing the barrier between the countries.
Another wall needs to be removed as well—the wall between humanity and God. That barrier was built in the Garden of Eden when a man and a woman committed the first act of rebellion against God (Gen. 3). And we all have continued that rebellion ever since! Can you visualize that impenetrable wall? Isaiah 59:2 says: “Your sins . . . have cut you off from God” (nlt).
Jesus’ death and resurrection, however, has made reconciliation with God possible (2 Cor. 5:17-21). All those who accept Christ’s sacrifice for sin will have the barrier of sin torn down and be reconciled to God. Christ’s death has also demolished other restrictive walls—between the Jews and Gentiles, slave and free, male and female (Gal. 3:28).
Don’t let your own “wall” of indecision prevent you from accepting God’s gift of salvation.
The veil is rent; in Him alone
The living way to heaven is seen;
The middle wall is broken down
And all mankind may enter in. —Wesley
The Bible is a record of man’s complete ruin in sin and God’s complete remedy in Christ. —Barnhouse

Sunday, August 12, 2012

A Re-post From Dennis Fisher of Our Daily Bread

Doubts And Faith

Our Daily Bread Radio is hosted by Les Lamborn
Can a believer in Jesus who has occasional doubts about matters of faith ever be effective in serving the Lord? Some people think that mature and growing Christians never question their beliefs. But just as we have experiences that can build our faith, we can also have experiences that cause us to temporarily doubt.
The disciple Thomas had initial doubts about reports of Jesus’ resurrection. He said, “Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, . . . I will not believe” (John 20:25). Christ did not rebuke Thomas but showed him the evidence he asked for. Amazed at seeing the risen Savior, Thomas exclaimed: “My Lord and my God!” (20:28). After this incident, the New Testament is silent about what happened to Thomas.
A number of early church traditions, however, claim that Thomas went to India as a missionary. It is said that while there he preached the gospel, worked miracles, and planted churches. Some of these churches in India still have active congregations that trace their founding back to Thomas.
A time of doubt doesn’t have to become a life pattern. Allow God to lead you into a deeper understanding of His reality. Renew your faith. You can still accomplish great things for Him.
When faith grows weak and doubts arise,
Recall God’s love and tender care;
Remind yourself of all He’s done
And of those times He answered prayer. —D. De Haan
Learn to doubt your doubts and believe your beliefs.

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