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AskMe #2109009 08/13/08 05:17 AM
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1 Peter 2:11-12 (NLT)
11 Dear friends, I warn you as “temporary residents and foreigners” to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against your very souls. 12 Be careful to live properly among your unbelieving neighbors. Then even if they accuse you of doing wrong, they will see your honorable behavior, and they will give honor to God when he judges the world.

Here the apostle Peter warns those who have placed their faith in Christ to take care and abstain from the sins of the world. Even the best of men, those who appear to be faithful to God, and live honorably are subject to the temptations of the world; therefore each must be careful as temporary citizen of earth to live righteously. He encourages them to live a pure life among the unbelievers of the world. Even the best of Christians have been subject to words of evil spoken of them by unbelievers. But by keeping pure when those same people come to believe in Christ they will change their opinion and glory God by commending those who lived properly among them.

Red Jacket was a Native American Seneca Indian orator and chief of the Wolf clan. He participated as a signatory at the Treaty of Canandaigua confirming peace with the United States. In the summer of 1805 a number of American Indians met in New York to listen to a Boston Missionary, Mr. Cram, present a Christian sermon. After the sermon Red Jacket made this statement, "Brother, you say that there is but one way to worship and serve the Great Spirit. If there is but one religion, why do you white people differ so much about it? Why not all agree, as you can all read the Book? "Brother, we are told that you have been preaching to the white people in this place. These people are our neighbors. We are acquainted with them. We will wait a little while and see what effect your preaching has upon them. If we find it does them good, makes them honest and less disposed to cheat Indians, we will then consider again of what you have said." Even thought Red Jacket did not know the words from 1 Peter 2:11-12, he understood the concept that ones beliefs should be agreeable with their actions. Are you living according to your faith in God? Do you practice honesty even in those moments you have the opportunity to do otherwise? Pray God might keep you honorable among all men and set you apart as a good example to others.

AskMe #2109710 08/14/08 04:53 AM
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Colossians 3:16-17 (NLT)
16 Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. 17 And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.

The apostle says we have heard the Good News of the salvation that comes from Christ, but we must do more than just hear; we must let Christ fill our lives with the richness He offers. We should take the wisdom we have been given and share it with others. We need to be thankful for the new lives we have been given in Christ and let ourselves be joyful that this world is temporary compared to the eternal life with Christ. We are agents, representatives of Christ, our lives should express the love that has been given to us.


The Reverend Sam Duree is a retired United Methodist pastor. Even thought he is 77 years old, he spends 4 hours a day making bird houses to sell. The money is not used on him or his family; instead he donates it to the Russian United Methodist Theological Seminary to train pastors. Sam has sold over 3,000 of his bird houses, which many are designed to look like churches. The sales of the bird houses have generated over $85,000 for the seminary. When Russia collapsed in 1991 there was not one Methodist Church inside of Russia. Today there are 120 Methodist Churches each with a trained pastor from the seminary. The Lord can use us in many ways to teach and counsel others. He gives us wisdom to put our talents to work and share with others. Like Sam we should be thankful for the days we have been given here on earth and use them wisely to help others. Let us represent Christ in the best ways we can showing our love and concern for others.

AskMe #2110255 08/15/08 05:22 AM
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Mark 11:20-21(NLT)
20 The next morning as they passed by the fig tree he had cursed, the disciples noticed it had withered from the roots up. 21 Peter remembered what Jesus had said to the tree on the previous day and exclaimed, “Look, Rabbi! The fig tree you cursed has withered and died!”

Previously in Mark 11:14 Jesus found a fig tree without any fruit upon it. Then Jesus said to the tree, “May no one ever eat your fruit again!” And the disciples heard him say it. The next day Jesus and the disciples are passing by the same tree. Peter yells out in surprise to Jesus to look at the tree, “The fig tree you cursed has withered and died!” It was as though Peter couldn’t believe it had happened. Jesus then later goes on to explain about faith and prayer. This was also a lesson for the disciples about the present day state of the church. The church was not producing the fruit it should so it might have as well withered up and died too.

David Harrison was a mechanic in Chicago who worked on Volkswagen Beetles. WGN-TV reported one day as he was working on a car the support jack gave way and pinned him underneath the car. The steering linkage had fallen across his neck and the accident was becoming very serious, very quickly. Four women who were nearby saw the accident and lifted the car off of Harrison. One woman said she guessed it must have been an adrenaline rush because she didn’t really think about what she was doing, she just lifted the car and it came off him. Had someone asked these women if they could have lifted the car their answer would probably have been no. But their sudden determination to save this mechanic gave them the strength they needed. Peter had a hard time believing the tree Jesus cursed had died. Yet he had seen many miracles take place. We often have a hard time believing God can do things beyond our expectations. Just like lifting the car off someone might have been beyond the women’s expectations they did it. We have a God and Savior who are mighty and powerful. We need to believe our Lord can accomplish anything and not be surprised when He does. Have faith in God, believe with all your heart and watch for things to happen in your life.

AskMe #2111582 08/18/08 05:22 AM
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John 3:16-21 (NLT)
16 “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. 17 God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him. 18 “There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son. 19 And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. 20 All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed. 21 But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants.

Jesus is talking to a Jewish leader, Nicodemus, who had slipped away under the cover of darkness to visit Jesus. Jesus explained how Moses had put a bronze snake up on a staff and told anyone who looked at it that they would live after being bitten by a deadly serpent. God how now sent His son into the world that anyone who would place their faith in Him would live an eternal life without the judgment of sin. Those who want to do right will step out into God’s light, but those who want to continue in their evil ways will ignore God’s redemptive gift of life.

A survey found that 10% of American drivers are driving around with their CHECK ENGINE light illuminated. Half of those same drivers had been driving with the light on for more than 3 months. People offered many excuses for not attending to their car: they didn’t have time; it would be too costly; it’s not really a problem; it’s not as serious as it sounds. These people are in denial that the warning could lead to even a more serious problem. Unfortunately many people are like that about their spiritual lives. They offer excuses as to why they could not take the free gift of life God offers in His son Jesus. There is a denial of their sin and their need for forgiveness. They just don’t see how serious the problem really is and that their lives are headed for failure and destruction. Pray for those who do not know Christ and His free gift of Salvation. Pray your own lives would be the light that provides a warning signal to others. Pray your life would be a testimony of the goodness of Christ for others to see.

AskMe #2112852 08/20/08 04:53 AM
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Genesis 4:4-9 (The Message)
6 -7 God spoke to Cain: "Why this tantrum? Why the sulking? If you do well, won't you be accepted? And if you don't do well, sin is lying in wait for you, ready to pounce; it's out to get you, you've got to master it." 8 Cain had words with his brother. They were out in the field; Cain came at Abel his brother and killed him. 9 God said to Cain, "Where is Abel your brother?" He said, "How should I know? Am I his babysitter?"

Able took a select offering to the Lord, while Cain had just taken what was available. The Lord accepted Able’s gift, but did not accept his Brother Cain’s gift. Cain, the younger brother, became very angry. And so the Lord spoke to him in the verses above saying if you do correctly you will be accepted, but sin is waiting to pounce. God says that sin is even out to get Cain. Cain ignored the warning and killed his brother Able out of jealousy. When God confronted Cain instead of telling the truth he lied.

I recently watched a war movie which reminded me of the way sin is ready to attack. A soldier was trying to watch out for the enemy, but could not see them. He had been warned the enemy was nearby as shots rang out. He started to walk forward, alone, through a cemetery carefully looking each direction to ensure the enemy was not close by. But the soldier let him guard down and the enemy came up from behind and killed him. While his friends attempted to come to his rescue, it was too late. The enemy had already done the damage and left. Sin does the same things in our life. Sin draws us into the battle field where we must keep alert. 1 Peter 5:8 tells us, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” Sin is ready to attack the moment we let our guard down. Our guard starts to come down as we walk alone into sins territory. We forget if we keep the Lord close by we have protection from the enemy that looks to defeat us. Even our friends who are close by cannot help if we choose to walk alone into sins territory. So be vigilant against sin and when God warns you, listen to the warnings. Don’t ignore them like Cain and fall into even deeper sin.

AskMe #2113443 08/21/08 05:06 AM
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Romans 5:3-4 (NLT)
3 We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. 4 And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. 5 And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.

In these verses the apostle says when we face problems and trials we can rejoice. When we depend upon God and work through our problems we develop character that has strength and confidence. Our endurance leads us to the hope of salvation; for the Holy Spirit speaks to us about the deep love God has for us.

Steven Curtis Chapman, Grammy winning singer and song writer, and his family faced one of the most difficult moments in their lives when his 17 year old son accidentally ran over their 5 year old daughter in the driveway of their home. It was a tragic accident talking the life of one child and placing a great burden on another. The words from his hit song Cinderella speaks of the love for his daughter. “It’s been a long day and there is still work to do. She’s pulling at me saying , “Dad, I need you. There’s a ball at the castle and I have been invited and I need to practice my dancing, oh please, daddy, please?” So I will dance with Cinderella while she is here in my arms, ‘cause I know something the prince never knew. Oh I will dance with Cinderella, I don’t want to miss even one song. ‘Cause all too soon the clock will strike midnight and she’ll be gone.”” The Chapman’s have faced their grief knowing God always has a purpose as difficult as it might be. Chapman said the accident made the family question their faith in God. "My son said the other day that, you know, 'Yeah, we are family.'... But we're a family with a lot of questions," Steven Curtis Chapman said. "But that's what faith is. It's living with the questions. That doesn't mean you have the answers. That's exactly what faith is." There will always be questions and doubts when struggles come into our life, but faith is continuing to believe in the unwavering love of God and the salvation of His Son Jesus Christ. We can endure and we do grow stronger as we face the problems and trials with God by our side.

AskMe #2114088 08/22/08 05:18 AM
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Jude 1:3-4 (NLT)
3 Dear friends, I had been eagerly planning to write to you about the salvation we all share. But now I find that I must write about something else, urging you to defend the faith that God has entrusted once for all time to his holy people. 4 I say this because some ungodly people have wormed their way into your churches, saying that God’s marvelous grace allows us to live immoral lives. The condemnation of such people was recorded long ago, for they have denied our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.

In this epistle from Jude he speaks of the common salvation given to Jews and Gentiles. He planned to write more on the salvation shared by all, but instead he turned to the issues of immorality slipping into the churches. The point made was grace was not given to live immoral lives, but instead was given to have freedom in living. He reminded them of people of the past who were condemned for failing to place their faith in God and follow Him.

Webster’s dictionary defines grace as unmerited divine assistance given humans for their regeneration or sanctification. Regeneration is a spiritual renewal. It is a revival of what was meant to be. It is a restoration to the original state. Through salvation God restored man to a state of being free from sin. He restored the fellowship of man with God. Sanctification is the state of growing in divine grace as a result of Christian commitment. It is freedom from sin. It is God imparting His holiness upon us. Sacredness is laid upon us as a gift. The grace that comes through salvation delivers us from the power of sin and its effects. It is liberation and preservation from destruction or failure. There are people in this world who mistake grace for a license to sin. We are all subject too the weight and effects of sin upon our lives. Grace gave us freedom from sin, not the open opportunity to sin. Grace says when you fail its ok, but grace does not say go out and attempt to fail. We should take the grace of God in our lives seriously and live to please God. When we do fail because of our human nature, we should repent and move forward knowing God has forgiven us and blessed us with the grace of salvation from Jesus Christ.

AskMe #2115352 08/25/08 05:57 AM
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Titus 2:1-8 (The Message)
1 -6Your job is to speak out on the things that make for solid doctrine. Guide older men into lives of temperance, dignity, and wisdom, into healthy faith, love, and endurance. Guide older women into lives of reverence so they end up as neither gossips nor drunks, but models of goodness. By looking at them, the younger women will know how to love their husbands and children, be virtuous and pure, keep a good house, be good wives. We don't want anyone looking down on God's Message because of their behavior. Also, guide the young men to live disciplined lives. 7 -8But mostly, show them all this by doing it yourself, incorruptible in your teaching, your words solid and sane. Then anyone who is dead set against us, when he finds nothing weird or misguided, might eventually come around.

Here in these verses we find the apostle writing to Titus how he should carry out his ministry to others. He is told to speak about things which are solid doctrine and not deviate from the word of God. He is told to guide older men, older women and instruct them that they might become leaders to a younger generation. Most of all the apostle wants to every to lead a life faithful to God so that no one can find anything misguided about their preaching or their lives.

Rider founded the, American Combat Veterans of War, which is a growing trend to treat the mental toll war takes on its participants. Their mission involves older combat veterans encouraging recent combat veterans to get help for the psychological effects of war. The Warrior Transition program was established by Col. Darcy Kauer, commander of the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force's headquarters group at Camp Pendleton. Kauer estimates that 1,200 to 1,500 Marines participated during the first six months of it’s foundation. Kauer began the program to help Marines successfully re-enter civilian life and others to manage mental stress before they are sent into battle again. Kauer said he was moved by the plight of some Marines struggling with failed marriages, substance abuse and other problems after they had been in combat. Marines have gather to hear a stark message: Mental stress from combat, including post-traumatic stress disorder, can ruin lives and even end them when symptoms are left untreated. Months and years after a Marine returns from combat, the stress of war can result in irritability, sleeping disorders, substance abuse, thoughts of suicide and domestic violence. Had there not been such a program their might not have been hope for these young men. Yet they are able to relate to the older men and see how they have successfully come through the difficulties of war. The apostle wanted older men and woman to understand this concept so they might reach others and provide encouragement and hope through their faith in Christ. Are you reaching out to others who need your help? Pray God can use you to lift the burdens of those around you.

AskMe #2115910 08/26/08 05:16 AM
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Romans 1:16-17 (NLT)
16 For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes—the Jew first and also the Gentile. 17 This Good News tells us how God makes us right in his sight. This is accomplished from start to finish by faith. As the Scriptures say, “It is through faith that a righteous person has life.”

Paul speaks boldly to the Romans saying he is not ashamed of the message of Salvation which comes through Jesus Christ. For this good news comes from God. It is His plan of redemption for everyone who believes in His plan of salvation. The key to accepting this plan of salvation is faith, as it is said, “It is through faith that a righteous person has life.”

To be ashamed is to have a feeling of shame, guilt or disgrace. It is a thought of feeling inferior or unworthy in regards to something. Most people who are ashamed of something are restrained in their actions to express any thoughts about what they feel. Yet Paul boldly says, “I AM NOT ASHAMED OF THIS GOOD NEWS ABOUT CHRIST.” But there are many Christians today who are afraid of speaking up about Christ because they are ashamed of offending someone. Think about this, you probably have someone in your life that you love dearly. Can you imagine if you had the opportunity to say something good about them, but held back because of fear of what others might think? It should not matter what others think when you know the person you are talking about is one of your closest, dearly and most intimate friends. Jesus Christ gave His life for you that though faith in Him you could have eternal life and freedom from sin. That is not something to be ashamed about, but it is something to be proud of. When you have a chance to speak about Jesus, speak boldly of Him as a personal friend of whom you are not ashamed. As others observe your love for Christ they may also want that same relationship. Isn’t it sad we can be ashamed of the sins we commit, but we can also be ashamed of the one who freed us from those sins?

AskMe #2116690 08/27/08 05:58 AM
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John 20:24-29 (NLT)
24 One of the twelve disciples, Thomas (nicknamed the Twin), was not with the others when Jesus came. 25 They told him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he replied, “I won’t believe it unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side.” 26 Eight days later the disciples were together again, and this time Thomas was with them. The doors were locked; but suddenly, as before, Jesus was standing among them. “Peace be with you,” he said. 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!” 28 “My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed. 29 Then Jesus told him, “You believe because you have seen me. Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.”

This is the story of Thomas, one of the 12 disciples of Jesus. Thomas was not present when others had seen Christ who was now alive even after death. Thomas was not quick to believe their stories instead he laid out the proof he would need. Thomas wanted to see nail wounds and the wounds in Christ’s side and be able to touch them and know they were real.

There are two parts to faith: belief and trust. Out of the two parts that make up faith, trust is the most difficult. James says, “You say you have faith, for you believe that there is one God. Good for you! Even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror.” The demons believe in God, but they don’t trust God to follow Him. Why is belief easier than trust? Belief does not take a commitment, but trust requires one. Abraham a man of faith was told to take his son to the top of the mountain as a sacrifice. Abraham was prepared to follow through with what God had asked him to do although God stopped him as he drew the knife towards his son. Abraham was making a commitment to follow God even at a great cost to himself. Our daughter was very ill several years ago. Talking with my wife I asked her if she had faith in God. She said yes, I believe he can heal our daughter. Then I asked the tougher question, but what if God wants to take her life for a greater purpose. Do you still trust Him? She hesitated for a moment and said, “I don’t like that question?” It was a question requiring commitment and to vocalize faith in God’s purpose was difficult for her when she realized God’s purpose may not fit her desire. Faith is not easy, but the more we trust God the easier it becomes.

AskMe #2117451 08/28/08 05:46 AM
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Hebrews 9:24-28 (NLT)
24 For Christ did not enter into a holy place made with human hands, which was only a copy of the true one in heaven. He entered into heaven itself to appear now before God on our behalf. 25 And he did not enter heaven to offer himself again and again, like the high priest here on earth who enters the Most Holy Place year after year with the blood of an animal. 26 If that had been necessary, Christ would have had to die again and again, ever since the world began. But now, once for all time, he has appeared at the end of the age to remove sin by his own death as a sacrifice. 27 And just as each person is destined to die once and after that comes judgment, 28 so also Christ died once for all time as a sacrifice to take away the sins of many people. He will come again, not to deal with our sins, but to bring salvation to all who are eagerly waiting for him.

The sacrifice made by Christ for all who eagerly desire His salvation was carried into the very presence of heaven. There Christ appears before God as an intercessor for our sins. Christ rebukes Satan the accuser as he comes to make accusations against us before God. But in the presence of God Christ intercedes for us, preparing our place in heaven. Christ died once for all time to take away sin and in the same way our acceptance of Christ removes our sin away for all time.

In 1947 a symbolic clock, called the Doomsday Clock, was created that represents how close our world is to a nuclear and environmental holocaust. The closer the hands are placed towards midnight, the closer the representation of destruction. The clock represents the degree of nuclear, environmental, and technological threats to mankind and is periodically corrected; currently, the clock reads: five minutes to midnight, having advanced two minutes on 17 January 2007. Since its inception the clock has been at 2 minutes before midnight when the hydrogen bomb was tested in 1953. It fell back to 17 minutes with the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. While these setting are arbitrary they do show mans concern about a time when the world will end. Yet there are many who are not concerned about when their life will end. They ignore the salvation offered by God through Christ even though there will be a time that is a definite end to their life. Christ wants to rescue us from an eternal destruction. He wants to give hope of a wonderful life after death. Some of you may have already accepted Christ’s precious gift of life; if so, God bless you. Others may be waiting and for those I pray they will not wait too long. For like the Doomsday Clock we never know when it will move to midnight, neither do we know the time our death will come.

AskMe #2118051 08/29/08 05:54 AM
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Luke 12:39-40 (NLT)
39 “Understand this: If a homeowner knew exactly when a burglar was coming, he would not permit his house to be broken into. 40 You also must be ready all the time, for the Son of Man will come when least expected.”

Jesus is speaking to the disciples and those around Him about His return. No one knows when that time will be except the Father. So those who follow Jesus should always be prepared; not being careless with sin or not believing in God’s salvation.


Preparation can be very important. For instance, if you are giving a Presidential speech in front of the nation you might want to have some thoughts prepared in advance. What if you were giving a large party for the guests of a wedding, you might want to be prepared by having a place to gather, food, drink, and other required items. It is difficult enough to prepare when you know the time of an event, but what if you don’t know when that event will occur? What if someone asked you have you come to a point in your life where you know you have eternal life and you would go to heaven if you died? Death is but a heartbeat away and in most cases comes unexpectedly. Are you prepared? How do you know you are prepared? What if you were standing before God and he asked, “Why should I let you into my heaven?” do you have an answer you can give? If you can say you have placed your faith and trust in Jesus Christ who died for the sins of the world and then rose again to life; you are prepared. What if you have fallen into habitual sin and find yourself doing things and going to places you shouldn’t? What if right in the midst of that sin that one last heart beat took place? Would you be comfortable with everyone knowing what you were doing and where you were, especially your Lord and Savior? Are you prepared to account for those sins? Jesus said, “Prove by the way you live that you have repented of your sins and turned to God. Don’t just say to each other, ‘We’re safe, for we are descendants of Abraham.’ That means nothing, for I tell you, God can create children of Abraham from these very stones.” Be prepared because you never know when the last moment will come. I think about a quote I once heard where someone said, “You need to make sure you have good clean underwear on just in case something happens.” Isn’t it is more important to have a good clean repentant soul just in case something happens?

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Matthew 6:19-21 (NLT)
19 “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. 21 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.


Jesus is warning against worldly thoughts which can be a common symptom of hypocrisy. Satan is able to use our desires and secretly turn them in professions of faith only used to serve ourselves. Therefore we should carefully choose the treasures we build up for ourselves. Better to do things we can cherish than to build physical possessions which will go to ruin or be passed on to someone else.

W. M. Kiplinger in 1920 founder a successful company focused on financial issues. The Kiplinger letter was created in 1923 and is still today one of the longest continuously published newsletter. Right in the heart of Washington, D.C., they also created the nations first personal finance magazine. They have also expanded onto the internet where they offer financial advice. In a February 2008 article titled, “The Virtues of Vice Stocks - Worried about the growing risk of recession? Use sin stocks to gin up your portfolio.” by Thomas M. Anderson, Associate Editor. The quote was “hard times won't stop gamblers from betting, partygoers from drinking and smokers from puffing. In fact, economic turbulence might give them even more reason to indulge. That makes so-called sin stocks, or shares of alcohol, gaming and tobacco companies, a safe bet as the U.S. economy slows.” The question is does anyone stop to think of the impact to those addicted to these problems. Do they think what will happen if the government makes a judgment against these companies causing their stocks to drop. God wants us to invest in people’s lives. God looks to us to care for others and support them when they need help. He doesn’t want us investing in things to cause others to fail and fall. Put your heart in the right place and that is where your treasures will follow. Let your treasures be stored in heaven instead of letting them be siphoned away.

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Romans 8:18-23 (NLT)
18 Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will reveal to us later. 19 For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who his children really are. 20 Against its will, all creation was subjected to God’s curse. But with eager hope, 21 the creation looks forward to the day when it will join God’s children in glorious freedom from death and decay. 22 For we know that all creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 23 And we believers also groan, even though we have the Holy Spirit within us as a foretaste of future glory, for we long for our bodies to be released from sin and suffering. We, too, wait with eager hope for the day when God will give us our full rights as his adopted children, including the new bodies he has promised us.

Here the apostle writes about the suffering believers face today versus the future of a glorious life with God. Presently our souls are tormented by suffering and sin. Even with the Holy Spirit testifying our future hope; we still eagerly wait for what God has promised. All of creation looks forward with hope the freedom from death and decay.

One of the news networks covering the Republican National Convention interviewed Miles McPherson, a black pastor who spoke and led the convention in prayer. Miles was formerly a defensive back for the San Diego Chargers. As Miles talked he gave a personal testimony of how he came to know Jesus Christ and then went on to be a pastor. Two years into his pro career he was battling a drug problem and an immoral lifestyle. His life was spiraling out of control. In April of 1984, after being up all night long doing cocaine he remembered the gospel of Jesus Christ that had been shared with him months earlier. Realizing his life was empty he gave his life to Jesus Christ. There is nothing more powerful that listening to someone whose life has been transformed by Christ into a new and meaningful life. Here in this world we battle against sin and all the curses brought with it. We might face death, we might face pain, but we have the hope of living eternally with Jesus Christ. That life will be glorious and our eternal life with Christ will out weight any pain, struggle, or feeling of hopelessness we have ever had. Praise God for changed lives and the hope given us through Jesus Christ.

AskMe #2120887 09/04/08 08:36 AM
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Romans 5:1-5 (NLT)
1 Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. 2 Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory. 3 We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. 4 And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. 5 And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.

The apostle speaks of the special benefits and privileges we have being justified through the Lord Jesus Christ. We have peace with God. Sin is the barrier between us and God and Jesus broke that barrier when He died on the cross for our sin. We have been put into a privileged place, and undeserved place, where we can be confident of being with God in all His glory. We have also been given a hope that allows us endurance through life’s trials. Because the Holy Spirit testifies that God is in our lives and loves us dearly we have hope to endure and become strengthened by our trial.

A man in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania put great hope in a plan he created to obtain money. His idea, pass off a counterfeit $1,000,000 bill at a grocery store for some purchased items and receive the change back. This man placed his hope and trust in his own plan to obtain money fraudulently. Surely he had high hopes of buying the car he wanted or a house, or other luxuries. Most of us can see probably see where this plan was headed. First problem, there isn’t a $1,000,000 bill in circulation. Second problem, most grocery store clerks don’t have change for a million dollars even if there was such a bill. So when the man presented the bill it was immediately confiscated; he was refused any change; the police were called and he was arrested. The hope he had placed in his plan had failed. This is a good example of why our hope needs to be in Jesus instead of ourselves. Our own plans often fail, but God says His hope in Christ will never lead to disappointment. Where do you place your hope?

AskMe #2121211 09/04/08 02:57 PM
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Thank you for taking time to type these devotionals.

I am depressed today, beyond words. I smile, play with my little boy, but I needed a good Word today to keep me afloat.

Thank you!

MadeInNY #2121441 09/05/08 05:15 AM
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Dear sweet heavenly Father,
Even though I don't know the name Lord, You do, so I pray for MadeInNY. Lord I ask for your mercy, grace and love to be evident to them. Lord I pray for their depression that it would be replaced with joy and hope. Lord you know our struggles and the trials we go through and Lord you are right there with us. Lord you gave your life in suffering and pain, so I know you understand their emotions. Lord your words are sweet unto our ears. They tell us of Your love for us and how precious you find each one of us. I pray for your safety over this person and the care of their son. Lord I give thanks for these precious lives. Lord bless them, and let Your love shower over them.

In the precious name of Jesus,
Amen

AskMe #2121442 09/05/08 05:15 AM
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Luke 22:19 (NLT)
19 He took some bread and gave thanks to God for it. Then he broke it in pieces and gave it to the disciples, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this to remember me.”

Jesus asked Peter and John to go ahead of Him to prepare the Passover meal. They went to a home where they had been instructed to go by Jesus. They found a room prepared for them then they gathered together in the room where Jesus would eat His last supper with His disciples. It was a close and intimate gathering. It was a time where everyone could bond in friendship and enjoy their time together. When they all sat down to eat Jesus told them how eager He was to eat this meal with them before His suffering was to begin. Jesus told them to drink the wine and eat the bread. Then he said, “Do this to remember me.”

Apollo 11 landed on the surface of the moon on Sunday, July 20, 1969. Many probably remember the words of Neil Armstrong as he stepped out of the Lunar Lander, "That's one small step for man; one giant leap for mankind." Astronaut Buzz Aldrin was there with him during this historic event. Buzz Aldrin was a Presbyterian Elder and brought with him a Communion kit his pastor had given him. After landing on the moon, Aldrin radioed earth with these words: "I'd like to take this opportunity to ask every person listening in, whoever and wherever they may be, to pause for a moment and contemplate the events of the past few hours, and to give thanks in his or her own way." Buzz wanted to remember his Lord and Savior during this historic moment. He received the Lord’s Supper on the surface of the moon. However, Buzz was asked to keep his Communion a secret because of a lawsuit brought by Madalyn Murray O’Hair against NASA for the reading of Genesis on Apollo 8. Buzz Aldrin remembered the creator; the one who placed the moon and hung the stars; the one who gave His life for others to live. The last meal with the disciples was the first meal on the moon. Jesus said, “Do this to remember me.” We should never forget Christ who remembered us and gave His life for our sins. Remember Jesus always and always give thanks for the sacrifice He made.

AskMe #2123142 09/08/08 06:13 AM
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1 Peter 1:18-21 (The Message Translation)
18 -21Your life is a journey you must travel with a deep consciousness of God. It cost God plenty to get you out of that dead-end, empty-headed life you grew up in. He paid with Christ's sacred blood, you know. He died like an unblemished, sacrificial lamb. And this was no afterthought. Even though it has only lately—at the end of the ages—become public knowledge, God always knew he was going to do this for you. It's because of this sacrificed Messiah, whom God then raised from the dead and glorified, that you trust God, that you know you have a future in God.


In these verses the apostle Paul writes to Christians who have been scattered across the lands due to the persecution of the church taking place. Peter urges these Christians to pass their time by staying close to God in thought and prayer. He reminds them of the sacrifice Jesus made for their lives; something God knew would come and pay for the sins of man. It is because of Christ who died, who rose again to life, who was glorified in heaven that we have a hope and future with God.



In May of 2006, the Associated Press reported a top New York heart surgeon was in El Salvador performing charity mercy operations. In the midst of a heart operation on an eight year old boy; Dr. Samuel Weinstein scrubbed out in order to donate his own rare blood type to the boy. Dr. Weinstein said the procedure was going well, but they didn’t have the medications to stop bleeding and the boy was in need of blood. Weinstein said. "After a while they said they couldn't give him blood because they were running out and he had a rare type.'' "We realized he might bleed to death, so I asked what blood type he was and they said he was B-negative and I said, "You know, I'm B-negative.'' Dr. Robert Michler, founder of the group, was standing next to Dr. Weinstein and said, "I support you.'' So he laid down in the midst of what he was doing just long enough to give blood so that the boy would live. Weinstein ate a Pop Tart, drank some water and returned to work. With the approval of the Father, Jesus Christ laid down His life for us. Jesus gave His own blood on the cross at Calvary so we would have the hope of eternal life. The sin released on the world by man demanded a pure, unblemished sacrifice and Jesus made it for you and me. Jesus said, “No one can take my life from me. I sacrifice it voluntarily. For I have the authority to lay it down when I want to and also to take it up again. For this is what my Father has commanded.”

AskMe #2123957 09/09/08 05:44 AM
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Luke 6:46-49 (NLT)
46 “So why do you keep calling me ‘Lord, Lord!’ when you don’t do what I say? 47 I will show you what it’s like when someone comes to me, listens to my teaching, and then follows it. 48 It is like a person building a house who digs deep and lays the foundation on solid rock. When the floodwaters rise and break against that house, it stands firm because it is well built. 49 But anyone who hears and doesn’t obey is like a person who builds a house without a foundation. When the floods sweep down against that house, it will collapse into a heap of ruins.”



Jesus has been speaking to the crowds of people who have followed Him to hear his teachings. Jesus is trying to explain that people are cheating themselves when they claim to be religious, yet they do not follow God by placing their faith in Him. He says those people are like someone who builds a house without a foundation. When troubled times come the house comes crashing down. For those who believe in God, who trust God, who are willing to follow God; they have built a solid foundation. When troubled times come they are able to stand firm. Their lives will not collapse into ruin because they have God as their foundation in life.


Edward Mote was a pastor and a hymn writer. Edward was born on January 21, 1797 and died November 18, 1874. Edward lived a tough life as a child. His parents ran a local pub and often left him to tend to himself. It is fitting that he later worked as a cabinet maker, because he followed Christ into the ministry as a pastor at Rehoboth Baptist Church., where he served for 26 years. As pastor he wrote the hymn “My Hope is Built on Nothing Less”, which contains the refrain “On Christ the Solid Rock I Stand, All other Ground is Sinking Sand.” Edward understood the words spoke by Christ. Christ is a solid rock of faith we can turn to anytime and in any situation. Christ is standing there defending us, taking up for us and keeping our feet firm even when we are about to fall. Those who turn away from God and the hope He has given us through Christ do not have a firm foundation to stand on. It is as if they are in quick stand. The harder they attempt to struggle on their own; the deeper they go into the sand. And if they never call out for help or do not patiently wait on rescue their reliance upon self to struggle free will eventually sink them to the depths of death. Remember these words of Edward Mote as you go through your daily lives:

My hope is built on nothing less Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness. I dare not trust the sweetest frame, But wholly trust in Jesus’ Name. 'On Christ the solid Rock I stand, All other ground is sinking sand; All other ground is sinking sand.' When darkness seems to hide His face, I rest on His unchanging grace. In every high and stormy gale, My anchor holds within the veil. His oath, His covenant, His blood, Support me in the whelming flood. When all around my soul gives way, He then is all my Hope and Stay. When He shall come with trumpet sound, Oh may I then in Him be found. Dressed in His righteousness alone, Faultless to stand before the throne.

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