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AskMe #2715906 03/27/13 09:14 PM
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Peace to you and your family. pray


FWW/BW (me)
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2nd M for both
Blended Family with 7 kids between us
Too much hurt and pain on both sides that my brain hurts just thinking about it all.



AskMe #2716022 03/28/13 11:28 AM
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God bless you, Ask, and may He comfort your mother's family and loved ones.


If you are serious about saving your marriage, you can't get it all on this forum. You've got to listen to the Marriage Builders Radio show, every day. Install the app!

Married to my radiant trophy wife, Prisca, 19 years. Father of 8.
Attended Marriage Builders weekend in May 2010

If your wife is not on board with MB, some of my posts to other men might help you.
AskMe #2716616 03/31/13 12:50 PM
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AM, today, of all days, I would offer you what comfort I can for your recent loss.

I would believe you understand better than many that the resurrection commemorated today is the promise that people of faith can cling to as loved ones are returned to the embrace of the Lord.

Peace to you and your family, friend!

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'The Risk of Being Foolish'
Easter Monday

Then they went away quickly from the tomb, fearful yet overjoyed...

- Matthew 28:8

Fearful yet overjoyed...talk about one of life's sweetest emotional collisions. Getting married, delivering a baby, raising a child, accepting a promotion, embarking on an adventure, standing on the starting line of a race...each of us has moments where we are simultaneously thrilled and terrified. Courage is somewhere in that space on the spectrum.

Today is the first Monday of Easter, the day after the Resurrection of our Lord. It also happens to be April Fools Day. I can imagine many of Jesus' followers feeling like fools after he died on the cross, wondering why God did not do a spectacular save, right then and there, in front of all the doubters. And yet, God did do a spectacular save--far more awesome than anyone could have understood--saving Jesus, and all of us, in the process.

As it turned out, the "fools" had faith, and their (our) Savior proved real. Today, think about what it looks like to love so much, to believe so deeply, that you risk foolishness. Open your heart.

- Kristin Armstrong

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Both Faith and the Lord: Exodus 14:21-29, especially vs 27: �So Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and when morning appeared, the sea returned to its full depth, while the Egyptians were trying to flee. But the Lord shook off the Egyptians in the midst of the sea.� It is essential, if one would be saved, to follow the directions of the Lord: to heed Him and to obey Him in heart and mind, even before we take any action on His word. Our minds are far too subject to the whim, desires, and fallacies of that which may �seem� obvious. To grasp the point of this truth, take a moment to review what we might call the prelude to the crossing of the Red Sea (Ex 14:15-17), a portrait of the spiritually mature Moses caught between Pharaoh and the sea.

Who initiated the action? �Then the Lord said to Moses� (Ex 14:15). Life goes aright when we follow the initiative of God no matter how things may appear. The word of the Lord was plain enough: �Tell the children of Israel to go forward� (Ex 14:15); yet to protect Moses and the people against precipitous action, the Lord provided a full map or outline to be followed: �Now lift up your rod and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it; and let the children of Israel go on dry ground in the midst of the sea� (Ex 14:16). Imagine that Moses might have had some questions at this point. But see: God already prepared Moses to use his rod against the Egyptians (eg, Ex 7:15; 8:1; 9:22, et al). Another issue God answered before the crossing was loss of trust while obeying, as in asking �Is this working?!� So God says, �I will be glorified in Pharaoh and over all his army....then the Egyptians will know I am the Lord� (Ex 14:17,18).

Applying these insights into the actual crossing of the sea, we should immediately note that God was the prime actor in what took place: �Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea and the Lord carried back the sea by a strong south wind all night and made the sea dry ground� (Ex 14: 21). In His timing, God acts as He wills; His will is trustworthy.

The Lord made the connection between Moses� outstretched hand and the drying of the seabed to strengthen His people�s faith in Him in the face of the insuperable (vs 22). He does so only if we obey Him. Follow His guidelines carefully, for God provides for the needs of His people; often He supplies our needs beyond the limits of our imagination or understanding.

Observe how rationally the Egyptians behaved: they observed the Israelites crossing the dry pathway in the sea without difficulty. It made sense to follow in order to catch them (vs 23). However, it is a major spiritual error to trust the obvious rather than to submit to God and obey His will foremost. Ever remember Who the Prime Actor is in the spiritual life - trust and obey.

�Now...the Lord looked down upon the army of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire� and cloud� (vs 24). Never entertain any thoughts from the enemy that the Lord does not know what is going on in our lives. Our gracious God is wholly aware, even if it does not seem as if He knows or is present. The pillar of fire was ignored by the Egyptians, just as the cross of Christ once appeared as �foolishness� (1 Cor 1:18). Indeed, Origen knew Satan is ever laboring to deceive us: �But unless we withdraw far from him and cross the sea and say, �As far as east is from west, he has removed our iniquities from us� (Ps 102:11), we cannot be saved.�

We are told that when the waters returned, �they covered the chariots, the horsemen and all of Pharaoh�s army that came into the sea after them� (Ex 14:28). Let us stir up the embers of the fire of trust and fear in the Lord. As Saint Ephraim the Syrian cautions us: the Egyptians �did not fear the Lord who appeared to them, and they were not deterred by their wheels that were clogged. They boldly drove their chariots with full force.� Wait, pray, heed, and obey God.o

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Peace
When the Lord said to the apostles, "My peace I give unto you". He added 'not as the world gives' (John 14:27).
He did not, that is to say, give peace in a simple, conventional manner, as people do when they greet one another
with the words 'Peace to you", or as the Shunammite woman did when she said 'Peace be with you' (cf. 2 Kgs. 4:23.
LXX). Nor did Christ mean the peace that Elisha had in mind when he told Gehazi to say to the Shunammite, 'Is
there peace with you?' (cf. 2 Kgs. 4:26. LXX)-in other words, is there peace with your husband, is there peace with
your son? No, Christ's peace is the peace which transcends every intellect (cf. Phil. 4:7), and which God gives to
those who love Him with all their soul, because of the dangers and battles they have been through. . In the same spirit
the Lord also said, 'In Me you have peace", and added, "In the world you will experience affliction; but have
courage, for I have overcome the
world' (John 16:33). By this He meant that though a person may experience many afflictions and dangers at the
hands of demons and other men, these will be as nothing if he possesses the Lord's peace. Again He said, 'Be at
peace with one another' (Mark 9:50). The Lord said all these things to them in advance because they were going to
fight and suffer for His sake.
In a similar way each of us faithful is attacked and led astray by the passions; but if he is at peace with God and
with his neighbor he overcomes them all. These passions are the 'world' which St John the Theologian told us to
hate (cf 1 John 2:15), meaning that we are to hate, not God's creatures, but worldly desires. The soul is at peace
with God when it is at peace with itself and has become wholly deifomi. It is also at peace with God when it is at
peace with all men, even if it suffers terrible things at their hands. Because of its forbearance it is not perturbed, but
bears all things (cf 1 Cor. 13:7), wishes good to .all, loves all, both for God's sake and for the sake of their own
nature. It grieves for unbelievers because they are destroying themselves, as our Lord and the apostles grieved for
them. It prays for the faithful and labors on their behalf, and in this way its own thoughts are filled with peace and it
lives in a state of noetic contemplation and pure prayer to God. To Him be glory through all the ages. Amen.


(St Peter of Damaskos)

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Romans 5:3-5 (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.

The Apostles tells us that not only can we rejoice in the good times, but we can learn to rejoice in times of problems and trails. For the problems and trials we face today can build us up as we trust God to see us through those issues. In doing so we also build upon our hope of salvation seeing that our faith in God does not lead to disappointment, but to the hope a better future. For God had placed the Holy Spirit within our hearts to speak to us and to speak to God for us in love.



An interviewer for the New York Times Magazine ran the following story about the faith of talk show host and comedian Stephen Colbert:

In 1974, when Colbert was 10, his father, a doctor, and his brothers Peter and Paul, the two closest to him in age, died in a plane crash while flying to a prep school in New England. "There's a common explanation that profound sadness leads to someone's becoming a comedian, but I'm not sure that's a proven equation in my case," he told me. "I'm not bitter about what happened to me as a child, and my mother was instrumental in keeping me from being so." He added, in a tone so humble and sincere that his character would never have used it: "She taught me to be grateful for my life regardless of what that entailed, and that's directly related to the image of Christ on the cross and the example of sacrifice that he gave us. What she taught me is that the deliverance God offers you from pain is not no pain� it's that the pain is actually a gift. What's the option? God doesn't really give you another choice." [Charles McGrath, "How Many Stephen Colberts Are There?" The New York Times Magazine (1-4-12)]


We know from The Bible Job himself suffered pain and devastating emotional effects from the loss of property, friends and family. Yet Job kept his faith in God. The last two verses from the Book of Job say, �Job lived 140 years after that, living to see four generations of his children and grandchildren. Then he died, an old man who had lived a long, full life.� Job�s life was full because he saw through the pain to see the hope of The Lord. Ask this question, �Am I looking at my pain or am I looking at the hope God has in store for me?�

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To those who prayed for my mother, our family and those close to us -- I thank you with all my heart. I'm back to writing today about the hope God gives us to see us through all things no matter how difficult they may be. Bless you my friends and may God always give you hope in the face of pain and difficulties.

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welcome back Ask. Job's story was one of those I reread in my dark days. God is sovereign and in control.


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1 Peter 2:24 (NIV)
24 �He himself bore our sins� in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; �by his wounds you have been healed.�

Matthew Henry comments on this verse, �The sufferings of Christ should quiet us under the most unjust and cruel sufferings we meet with in the world. He suffered voluntarily, not for himself, but for us, with the utmost readiness, with perfect patience, from all quarters, and all this though he was God�man; shall not we sinners, who deserve the worst, submit to the light afflictions of this life, which work for us unspeakable advantages afterwards?�



Matt Chandler tells the following story about what happened after speaking at a conference near his hometown:

When I was done preaching, I decided to hop in my car, drive twenty minutes to the town in which I grew up, and look at the houses that I remembered from back then. As I drove into town, I passed a field where I once got into a fistfight with a kid named Sean. It was not a fair fight, and I did some shady, dark things in that fight. I completely humiliated him in front of a large crowd of people �. Then I drove past my first house, and I thought of all the wicked things I had done in that house. I passed a friend's house where once, at a party, I did some of the most shameful, horrific things that I have ever done.

Afterward, on the drive back to the conference, I was overwhelmed with the guilt and shame of the wickedness that I had done in that city prior to knowing Jesus Christ �. I could hear the whispers in my heart: "You call yourself a man of God? Are you going to stand in front of these guys and tell them to be men of God? After all you've done?"

In the middle of all that guilt and shame, I began to be reminded by the Scriptures that the old Matt Chandler is dead. The Matt Chandler who did those things, the Matt Chandler who sinned in those ways, was nailed to that cross with Jesus Christ, and all of his sins�past, present, and future�were paid for in full on the cross of Jesus Christ. I have been sanctified "once and for all" �. He remembers my sins no more �. And I no longer need to feel shame for those things, because those things have been completely atoned for. [Matt Chandler, The Explicit Gospel (Crossway, 2012), pp. 211-213]

Maybe some of you have felt shame for the sins of your past, but remember Christ freed us from all sins that we could move forward in life without the shame and regret of sins past. Christ gave us hope to live a righteous life and hope to live with The Lord eternally upon our death. It was an unjust and cruel suffering Christ met to bring about a beautiful story of redemption for us.

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Luke 9:23 (NLT)
23 Then he said to the crowd, �If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me.

We must live a life of self-denial, mortification, and contempt of the world; we must not indulge our ease and appetite, for then it will be hard to bear toil, and weariness, and want, for Christ. We are daily subject to affliction, and we must accommodate ourselves to it, and acquiesce in the will of God in it, and must learn to endure hardship. We frequently meet with crosses in the way of duty; and, though we must not pull them upon our own heads, yet, when they are laid for us, we must take them up, carry them after Christ, and make the best of them. [Matthew Henry Commentary on Luke 9]



Christ says, 'Give me All. I don't want so much of your time and so much of your money and so much of your work: I want You. I have not come to torment your natural self, but to kill it. No half-measures are any good. I don't want to cut off a branch here and a branch there, I want to have the whole tree down. I don't want to drill the tooth, or crown it, or stop it, but to have it out. Hand over the whole natural self, all the desires which you think innocent as well as the ones you think wicked - the whole outfit. I will give you a new self instead. In fact, I will you Myself: my own will shall become yours.'

Both harder and easier than what we are all trying to do. You have noticed, I expect, that Christ Himself sometimes describes the Christian way as very hard, sometimes as very easy. He says, 'Take up your Cross' - in other words, it is like going to be beaten to death in a concentration camp. Next minute he says, 'My yoke is easy and my burden light.' He means both. ...

The terrible thing, the almost impossible thing, is to hand over your whole self - all your wishes and precautions - to Christ. But it is far easier than what we are all trying to do instead. For what we are trying to do is to remain what we call 'ourselves', to keep personal happiness as our great aim in life, and yet at the same time to be 'good'. We are all trying to let mind and heart go their own way - centered on money or pleasure or ambition - and hoping, in spite of this, to behave honestly and chastely and humbly. And that is exactly what Christ warned us you could not do. As He said, a thistle cannot produce figs. If I am a field that contains nothing but grass-seed, I cannot produce wheat. Cutting the grass may keep it short: but I shall still produce grass and no wheat. If I want to produce wheat, the change must go deeper than the surface. I must be ploughed up and re-sown. [C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity (HarperOne, 2001), p.196-197]


The Christian life can be hard, but like vigorous workout at the gym it strengthens us and builds us. As we deal with the difficulties of life we can learn to plough up the fields that are not producing and replant a life that is productive and meaningful. Christ urges us to follow Him and the way we do that is by fellowshipping with Him. We learn who Christ is through His words. We pray and at times remain silent so Christ can speak to us. We listen and look for opportunities to follow and do the work of Christ. It�s not always easy, but it is rewarding. Then one day we look back where we came from and we realize we have built a new life, a stronger life, a more righteous life and we see life has gotten easier.

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But how much do we give?
There are monks in Greece that live in caves and have their good roped up to them in buckets, so they live in poverty and chastity.

This is a dillema that is often on my mind. How much do we sacrifice?
God gave us life. How much life do we live in misery?

In my marriage I viewed it as bearing a cross, to live in a sexless marriage. I don't know if I was right or wrong.

But the world could not function if we all took vows of poverty and chastity.

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Crescens the Martyr

Reading from the Synaxarion:

This Martyr was from Myra of Lycia, born of an illustrious family. Of his own accord he went amidst the idolaters and admonished them to leave off their futile religion and worship the only true God, Who is worshipped by the Christians; for this he was arrested. When asked by the ruler what his name and lineage were, the Saint would answer only that he was a Christian; counseled to offer sacrifice to the idols, he refused. For this, he was hung up and beaten, was scraped, and then was cast into fire, in which he gave up his holy soul into the hands of God, though not even the hair of his head was harmed by the flames.

Old Testament Reading

The reading is from Isaiah 37:33-38:6

"Therefore thus says the LORD concerning the king of Assyria: He shall not come into this city, or shoot an arrow there, or come before it with a shield, or cast up a siege mound against it. �By the way that he came, by the same he shall return, and he shall not come into this city, says the LORD. �For I will defend this city to save it, for my own sake and for the sake of my servant David." �And the angel of the LORD went forth, and slew a hundred and eighty-five thousand in the camp of the Assyrians; and when men arose early in the morning, behold, these were all dead bodies. �Then Sennacherib king of Assyria departed, and went home and dwelt at Nineveh. �And as he was worshiping in the house of Nisroch his god, Adrammelech and Sharezer, his sons, slew him with the sword, and escaped into the land of Ararat. And Esarhaddon his son reigned in his stead.

In those days Hezekiah became sick and was at the point of death. And Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz came to him, and said to him, "Thus says the LORD: Set your house in order; for you shall die, you shall not recover." �Then Hezekiah turned his face to the wall, and prayed to the LORD, and said, "Remember now, O LORD, I beseech thee, how I have walked before thee in faithfulness and with a whole heart, and have done what is good in thy sight." And Hezekiah wept bitterly. �Then the word of the LORD came to Isaiah: �"Go and say to Hezekiah, Thus says the LORD, the God of David your father: I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; behold, I will add fifteen years to your life. �I will deliver you and this city out of the hand of the king of Assyria, and defend this city.



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Originally Posted by Jedi_Knight
But how much do we give?
There are monks in Greece that live in caves and have their good roped up to them in buckets, so they live in poverty and chastity.

This is a dillema that is often on my mind. How much do we sacrifice?
God gave us life. How much life do we live in misery?

In my marriage I viewed it as bearing a cross, to live in a sexless marriage. I don't know if I was right or wrong.

But the world could not function if we all took vows of poverty and chastity.

I think that yielding our selves to Christ is simply saying that we will follow His plan and will for our lives instead of what our flesh desires. I understand it to be moving from a slave of sin to a slave of righteousness (found in Romans I think). Doing what God wants us to do means living "not after the flesh but after the Spirit" That means we follow the leading of the Holy Spirit. For some that may mean taking a vow of poverty, for others it may simply mean telling someone that Jesus loves them and died to take their sin away. It means giving up habitual sins like addictions etc. It means deciding everyday to live our lives Christ-like in whatever situation we find ourselves in and being obedient to the urging of the Holy Spirit.


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This is not my typical devotion, but is weighing heavy on my heart so I wanted to share it. We all face overwhelming challenges in life and this is one that a young woman is currently facing.



Matthew 25:35-40 (KJV)
'For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.' "Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You drink? 'And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? 'And when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?' "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.'

These are the words of Jesus, when we help others we are helping Jesus. Reach out if you can and help others with what you have available to you.



A dear friend of our family and a dear friend to so many other people, Pam Hobby Clark, of Satellite Beach, FL, passed away Saturday morning leaving behind a daughter Kaci and a granddaughter Emilly. Anyone who knew Pam knew she was a loving, sweet and giving person. She modeled a servant of Christ as she gave out of her heart. I wanted to share the information passed along from her church.

Friends of Our Dear Pam: It is with all sadness that we tell you that Pam, unexpectedly, left this earth for Gods kingdom on Saturday morning. She leaves behind her daughter Kaci and Grand daughter Emily. Services will be held at Trinity Presbyterian Church, in Satellite Beach, FL, on Saturday April 20th at 2:00. A Reception will follow in lobby. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the �Pam Clark Fund� that will 100% benefit her Daughter and Granddaughter�s future. Trinity Presbyterian Church is located at 638 S Patrick Dr, Satellite Beach, FL 32937; phone number (321) 777-2047; email office@trinitypres.net ; website www dot TrinityPres dot net

Kaci and Emily were everything to Pam. Kaci is a single mom raising her daughter Emily. Pam, Kaci and Emily lived together helping one another. Pam was retired on disability and her income with Kaci�s income helped meet the household needs. Pam also watched after her granddaughter Emily while Kaci worked. They have always been very close to each other and depended upon one another; they were each other�s support system.

Sadly Saturday morning Kaci knew something wasn�t right when she didn�t hear her mother. She went in to check on her and found that she had unexpectedly passed away in her sleep. It was a horrific way to start a Saturday morning. Kaci was doing her best to handle such an ordeal, but she wasn�t reaching out for help. Asked if she would call someone to assist her, she said,� I just can�t say the words.� So she provided names and numbers for someone to call for her. As friends and church members were called, it was then that God�s loved was poured out as people came forward to help. Kaci and Emily were left with very little; no insurance, and no extra funds and they have lost part of their support system -- their sweet, dear mother and grandmother.

At 32 Kaci is a strong women, but being a single mom and no family close by to help she is going to need prayers and any help she can obtain to take care of herself and her daughter. The church is reaching out to help. If anyone is so inclined to help Kaci and Emily -contact Trinity Presbyterian Church at the contact information above.

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Romans 10:9-10 (NLT)
9 If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.

This is a summary of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. First there is a promise that we will be saved and given eternal life free from sin. The conditions of that promise are that we are willing to make a proclamation that Jesus is Lord; openly professing a relationship to Him and dependence upon Him as Lord and Savior. Second we are to have faith that God raised Christ from the dead. Knowing that God has power over life and death gives us the reassurance of our own eternal life. Lastly we must be willing to acknowledge our salvation to others that others may also learn about Christ and His everlasting grace and mercy.




In my devotion yesterday I wrote about our dear friend Pam Clark who passed away unexpectedly. My wife and I knew Pam for over 25 years. Pam was a sweet Christian woman who lived out her faith. In my younger years I had the privilege of teaching her son Trevor in Sunday school. Trevor was a kind and sweet young man. I had many talks with Trevor and I knew he believed in Christ and had accepted him as Lord and Savior. Trevor told others about Christ and shared from his heart his love for the Lord.

In Trevor�s senior year of high school he wanted to buy his mother Pam a present for Christmas and he had made some arrangements to do that. Unfortunately Trevor was unable to give his mother that present. You see Trevor was killed in a car accident right before Christmas. We grieve when we lose someone we love and many grieved the loss of Trevor, including his sister Kaci who was around 11 at the time. I remember Kaci placing Christmas presents in the casket with Trevor as she mourned the loss of her brother.

Kaci who is a kind and sweet woman has faced the loss of her brother and her mother. It�s more than most people could probably bear. The encouraging part is she knew both Trevor and Pam were Christians and in her belief both are now together in heaven.

From Pam�s obituary come these words, �Pamela Sheryl Clark, 58, said she "Would wake up everyday with one of her children", and on Saturday, April 13, 2013, she was greeted in heaven by her son.� Pam knew she would either wake up with Kaci who was here on earth or she would wake up with Trevor who was already waiting for her in heaven. It was her faith in Christ that gave her that great peace.

Please continue to remember Kaci and Emily Clark in your prayers. May God watch over them, keep them safe and provide for their every need. Anyone who desires to help Kaci and Emily can do so through Trinity Presbyterian Church, 638 S Patrick Dr, Satellite Beach, FL 32937 to the Pam Clark Memorial Fund.

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1 Corinthians 15:20-22 (NLT)
20 But in fact, Christ has been raised from the dead. He is the first of a great harvest of all who have died. 21 So you see, just as death came into the world through a man, now the resurrection from the dead has begun through another man. 22 Just as everyone dies because we all belong to Adam, everyone who belongs to Christ will be given new life.

The apostle is confirming to the Corinthian Christians that while Christ died -- He has risen from the dead and taken His place in heaven. It reassures us as adopted sons and daughters of God because of our faith in Christ we too will be joined with Christ upon our death. The apostle gives reference to Adam that because of his sin man was handed over to death, but those who belong to Christ will be given a new life, a life abundant in grace in mercy on earth, and a life ever after in heaven upon our death.




Adam and Eve were given a wonderful life in the Garden of Eden. They were told one thing they should not do -- and that was to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Yet they disobeyed God and sin entered into their hearts. They were no longer pure and free from sin.

Sadly there was another tree in the garden called the tree of life, which they could have eaten prior to their failure. This tree would have given them eternal life. God in his loving mercy and grace knowing Adam and Eve were now filled with sin moved them from the Garden of Even; away from the tree of life. God even placed an angel with the tree to protect anyone from gaining access. God knew that man was now filled with sin and that to have eternal life would mean a life eternally filled with sin and no hope of salvation. That was not God�s plan for man.

So God gave His Son Jesus Christ to become a sacrifice for our sins. Through Christ�s death those who believe in His death, who are willing to repent of their sins and ask Christ to be their Lord and savior are once again free from the bondage of sin that Adam and Eve placed upon mankind. God had prepared mankind for this by providing laws and commandments, which mankind was not able to obey or keep. God wanted to show them their need for a savior; one who could free them from the debt of sin and give them an everlasting life.

John 3:16-17 says, �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.� For those who try to live by law and commandments are judged by the those laws; yet those who receive Christ as their Lord and Savior are given mercy and grace.

Over the past month my mother has passed away along with some of my childhood friend�s parents. Some of my close high school friends have also passed away or their brothers and sisters. It�s been a tough month, but I find comfort in knowing they knew Christ and that they are all together in heaven with Christ. It brings a peace beyond understanding to know they are well, they are no longer suffering and are they are at total peace. Christ has indeed given them an abundant and new life to enjoy.

AskMe #2721132 04/22/13 05:34 AM
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Romans 1:20 (NIV)
For since the creation of the world God�s invisible qualities�his eternal power and divine nature�have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.

The argument the apostle presents is that �The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them.� God may be invisible in His nature to us, but His creations and His actions in our life should be evident that there is no excuse not to believe in God.



An atheist was walking through the woods, admiring all the "accidents" that evolution had created. "What majestic trees! What powerful rivers! What beautiful animals!" he said to himself. As he was walking alongside the river, he heard a rustling in the bushes behind him. Turning to look, he saw a seven-foot grizzly bear charge towards him. He ran away as fast as he could up the path.

He looked over his shoulder and saw the grizzly was closing. Somehow he ran even faster, so scared that tears came to his eyes. He looked again, and the bear was even closer. His heart was pounding, and he tried to run faster. He tripped and fell to the ground. He rolled over to pick himself up, but the bear was right over him, reaching for him with its left paw and raising its right paw to strike him.

At that instant the atheist cried, "Oh my God!" Time stopped. The bear froze. The forest was silent. Even the river stopped moving.

As a bright light shone upon the man, a voice came out of the sky, "You deny my existence for all these years, teach others that I don't exist, and even credit creation to a cosmic accident. Do you expect me to help you out of this predicament? Am I to count you as a believer?"

The atheist looked directly into the light and said, "I would feel like a hypocrite to become a Christian after all these years, but perhaps you could make the bear a Christian?"

"Very well," said the voice.

The light went out. The river ran. The sounds of the forest resumed. Then the bear dropped his right paw, brought both paws together, bowed its head, and spoke: "Lord, for this food which I am about to receive, I am truly thankful."


This was intended to add a little humor to the morning, but there is serious message in the joke. Even those who deny God will at times call out to God in their panic or moment of distress. Madalyn Murray O'Hair and her son Jon ran an organization called American Atheists. She was instrumental is having Bible reading removed from the schools. In 1995 she was kidnapped, murdered, and her body mutilated, along with her son Jon Murray and granddaughter Robin Murray O'Hair, by former American Atheist office manager David Roland Waters. One has to wonder what she thought in those last moments when she finally met her creator. Jude 1:4 says, �For certain individuals whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord.�

AskMe #2721281 04/23/13 05:43 AM
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Romans 14:10-12 (NIV)
10 You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister? Or why do you treat them with contempt? For we will all stand before God�s judgment seat. 11 It is written: ��As surely as I live,� says the Lord, �every knee will bow before me; every tongue will acknowledge God.�� 12 So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.

The apostle is questioning why people are compelled to judge one another and treat each other with contempt. He then goes on to reason that we all will stand before God at the judgment seat and each of us will be humbled at that time. So instead of looking at the actions of others we should take into account our own actions.



Philip Yancey put it this way in an article in Christianity Today. He writes, "As I read accounts of the New Testament church, no characteristic stands out more sharply than [diversity]. Beginning with Pentecost, the Christian church dismantled the barriers of gender, race, and social class that had marked Jewish congregations. Paul, who as a rabbi had given thanks daily that he was not born a woman, slave, or Gentile, marveled over the radical change: �There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.�

As Christians we are one body working together for the purpose of Christ. As one body we should not be critical of one another, but instead strive to work together for the betterment of each other. We need to take the time to encourage one another and to pray for one another. One day we all will face God and give an account of our actions. Let�s ensure our actions towards others are something God would be pleased with. Let us reach out to others in love.

AskMe #2721493 04/24/13 05:38 AM
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1 Peter 1:18-19 (NLT)
18 For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And the ransom he paid was not mere gold or silver. 19 It was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God. It was God�s gift to mankind.

Here the apostle reminds Christians that they are redeemed. For God paid the ransom to save them from an empty life imposed on them by the sins Adam and Eve and all who followed. There were also reminded they were redeemed with the precious blood of Christ, more valuable that gold or silver.




On November 26, 2008, a gang of terrorists stormed the Taj Mahal Palace in Mumbai, India. After the carnage had left 200 people dead, a reporter interviewed a guest who had been at the hotel for dinner that night. The guest described how he and his friends were eating dinner when they heard gunshots. Someone grabbed him and pulled him under the table. The assassins came striding through the restaurant, shooting at will, until everyone (or so they thought) had been killed.

Miraculously, this man survived. When the interviewer asked the guest how he lived when everyone else at his table had been killed, he replied, �I suppose because I was covered in someone else�s blood, and they took me for dead.� [Ravi Zacharias, Has Christianity Failed You? (Zondervan, 2010), p. 42]

The blood of Christ covers our sins therefore we indeed dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord. We are reminded in Romans 6:20-23,�When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the obligation to do right. And what was the result? You are now ashamed of the things you used to do, things that end in eternal doom. But now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God. Now you do those things that lead to holiness and result in eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.

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