Tuesday, October 17, 2017

THE ROYAL LAW



The coronation of King George VI was the first to be broadcast to the world by radio.

What a magnificent testimony to the Bible was heard at that point in the Westminster Abbey service when the crystal-clear voice of the Archbishop of Canterbury rang out with these words:

"Our gracious King, we present you with this Book, the most valuable thing this world affords. Here is wisdom; this is the royal law; these are the living oracles of God."

- Bible Society Record.(moreillustrations.com)

“One way to get comfort is to plead the promise of God in prayer, show Him His handwriting; God is tender of His Word.” -  Thomas Manton.

Isa 62:6 (GNT): “On your walls, Jerusalem, I have placed sentries; they must never be silent day or night. They must remind the Lord of his promises and never let him forget them.”

Monday, October 16, 2017

THE EASIER WAY



There are two ways of traveling on the Continent.

In the first, you do everything for yourself. You obtain your ticket, look after your luggage, get your seat in the carriage, ask at least three porters whether you are right; and if you have an imperfect knowledge of the language, you have constantly an uneasy sense that perhaps you are wrong. 

There is another method of foreign travel.

You employ a Tourist Agency, which obtains your tickets, sees to your comfort, gives you precise directions, provides you, where necessary, with a conductor & at every terminus waits to greet you. 

And in this we have a good illustration of the easier way of traveling to Heaven. Be at rest in the indwelling & in working of the Holy Spirit. Only see that He is not grieved & He will see to all else.

- King's Business, F. B. Meyer. (moreillustrations.com)

Ep 4:30 (WE): “Do nothing that makes the Holy Spirit feel sad. He is the mark God has put on you until the day you will belong to God altogether.”

"Trying to do the Lord's work in your own strength is the most confusing, exhausting, and tedious of all work. But when you are filled with the Holy Spirit, then the ministry of Jesus just flows out of you.” - Corrie Ten Boom.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

HELD IN HIGH ESTEEM



One night I read an account of the scenes around Catherine Booth as she lay in her coffin at Congress Hall:

How the poorest of the poor felt she was specially theirs in death as in life.

How ministers & members of Parliament & half-starved children of the slums were alike eager for a last look upon the face they loved.

Lost girls turned from her side & begged to be taken to some home where they could begin a new life.

"That woman lived for me," a poor drunkard cried in anguish. They drew him aside; and down on his knees, he accepted pardon & promised that her God should be his.

Three men knelt together at the head of the coffin & poured out their penitence to God & went out of the hall saved.

Another said, "I've come 60 miles to see her again. She was the means of saving my two boys."

What a thrilling testimony to one who had the "qualities of a Christian!"

- The King's Business. (moreillustrations.com)

Pro 22:1 (NLT): “Choose a good reputation over great riches; being held in high esteem is better than silver or gold.”

“A good name is what is given you by others and that which has been earned by you.” -  Jack Hyles.

Friday, October 13, 2017

WORTH FOLLOWING



There is a pleasing story of how the father of Matthew Henry the commentator won his bride. He was a Presbyterian minister, she, an only daughter & the heiress of a considerable fortune.

Her father objected. "You see," he said to his daughter, "he may be a perfect gentleman, a brilliant scholar & an excellent preacher; but he is a stranger & we do not even know where he comes from!"

"True," replied the girl, "but we know where he is going & I should like to go with him."

Do others have confidence in us because they know we are led of God?

- Sunday School Chronicle. (moreillustrations.com)

“A good conscience and a good confidence go together.” -  Thomas Brooks.

1 Tim 4:12 (RSV): “Let no one despise your youth, but set the believers an example in speech and conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.”

“Nobody knows about your integrity, your sincerity, your talent or your good will unless you give out samples in action.” - Weekly Animator.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

MEANING OF COMFORT



A missionary translator, laboring amongst a tribe in the mountains of Mexico, found it hard to get the right word for 'comfort'.

One day his helper asked for a week's leave, and explained that his uncle had died & he wanted some days off to visit his bereaved aunt 'to help her heart around the corner'.

That was just the expression the missionary needed.

- (moreillustrations.com)

John 14:16 (KJV): “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever.”

“If I am walking along the street with a very disfiguring hole in the back of my dress, of which I am in ignorance, it is certainly a very great comfort to me to have a kind friend who will tell me of it. And similarly it is indeed a comfort to know that there is always abiding with me a divine, all-seeing Comforter, who will reprove me for all my faults, and will not let me go on in a fatal unconsciousness of them.” -  Hannah Whitall Smith.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

GIVE YOURSELF TO OBEY GOD’S GUIDANCE



A young man was eager to grow in His Christian life.

He got a piece of paper & made a list of all the things he would do for God. He wrote down the things he would give up, the places he would go to minister & the areas of ministry he would enter.

He was excited. He took that list to the church & put it on the altar. He thought he would feel joy, but instead he felt empty.

So he went home & started adding to his list. He wrote down more things he would do & wouldn’t do. He took the longer list & put it on the altar, but still he felt nothing.

He went to a wise, old pastor, told him the situation & asked for help. The pastor said, “Take a blank sheet of paper. Sign your name at the bottom. Put that on the altar.”

The young man did & then peace came to his heart.

-‘The Pulling Down of Strongholds’, R.B. Ouellette (ministry127.com)

Jer 10:23 (TLB): “O Lord, I know it is not within the power of man to map his life and plan his course.”

“God does not will He should follow what man has initiated. Other than following God's direction, we have no right to direct Him. We have no ability to offer but to obey God's guidance.” -  Watchman Nee.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

THE TIE OF LOVE



One day, one of the gigantic eagles of Scotland carried away a sleeping infant. The whole village pursued it, but the eagle soon perched itself upon a lofty crag & everyone despaired of the child's life.

A sailor tried to climb the ascent, but he was obliged to give up the attempt. A robust Highlander, accustomed to hill climbing, tried but was forced to return.

At last a poor peasant woman came forward & putting her feet on one shelf of the rock, then a second, then a third, she rose to the very top of the cliff.

While the hearts of those below were trembling, she came down step by step, until amid the shouts of the villagers, she stood at the bottom of the rock with the child on her bosom.

Why did that woman succeed when the strong sailor & the practiced Highlander failed?

Because between her & the babe there was a tie; that woman was the mother of the babe. Let there be that tie of love of Christ and to souls then greater wonders will be accomplished.

-The King's Business. (moreillustrations.com)

“For I am not seeking my own good but the good of many, so that they may be saved.” – Paul (1 Cor 10:33 NIV)

Monday, October 9, 2017

GENEROUS SPIRIT



A miner worked very hard every day in the mines for a living. The overseer of the mine said to him one day:

"Thomas, I've got an easier post for you, where there is not much hard work & where you will get better wages. Will you accept it?"

Most men would have jumped at such an offer. But what did this noble fellow do? He said to the overseer:

"Captain, there's our poor brother Tregony: he has a sickly body & not able to do hard work as I can. I am afraid his work will shorten his life & then what will his poor family do? Won't you please let him have this easier post? I can go on working as I have done."

The overseer was wonderfully pleased with Thomas's generous spirit.

- Gospel Herald. (moreillustrations.com)

Gal 6:2 (MOUNCE): “Bear one another’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”

“No one is useless in this world who lightens the burden for anyone else.” - Charles Dickens.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

SERVANT LEADER



The late Dawson Trotman, founder of the Navigators, was visiting Taiwan on one of his overseas trips.

During the visit he hiked with a Taiwanese pastor back into one of the mountain villages to meet with some of the national Christians.

The roads & trails were wet, and their shoes became very muddy.  Later, someone asked this Taiwanese pastor what he remembered most about Dawson Trotman.

Without hesitation the man replied, “He cleaned my shoes.”

- (ministry127.com)

John 13:5 (ICB): “Then he poured water into a bowl and began to wash the followers’ feet. He dried them with the towel that was wrapped around him.”

Luke 14:11 (NIV): “For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

“Nothing sets a person so much out of the devil's reach as humility.” - Jonathan Edwards.           

Friday, October 6, 2017

THE BONDAGE OF ALCOHOL



Have you heard the story of Waylon Prendergast? The man from Tampa, Florida, had been out drinking when he decided to rob a house on his way home.

The drunken man forced his way into a house, filled a suitcase he found there with the valuables he discovered & made his way to the living room.

In his stupor he decided it would be a good idea to set a fire to cover his tracks, so he ignited a blaze before making his way out the back door.

Thinking he was home free, he continued on to his house - only to find 3 fire trucks parked outside fighting the blaze he had set to cover his theft from his own home.

The Bible describes alcoholic drinks as being deceitful for a reason.

None of those people who now realize they have a problem with it intended to become alcoholics or dependent on their next drink to make it through the day. But that is where the end of the path they set out on leads.

- Herald Sun (ministry127.com)

“The ravages of drink are greater than those of war, pestilence, and famine combined.” - William Gladstone.

Ps 3:8 (NIV): “From the Lord comes deliverance. May your blessing be on your people.”

Thursday, October 5, 2017

NEGLECTED OPPORTUNITY



Four things come not back - the spoken word, the sped arrow, the past life, and the neglected opportunity.

- Survey Bulletin (moreillustrations.com)

“Let's help people get on board with what God wants to give them, but what we don't want is the process. Everyone wants the product.” -  Chip Ingram.

Isa 59: 15-16 (GNV): “…The LORD has seen this, and he is displeased that there is no justice.  He is astonished to see that there is no one to help the oppressed. So he will use his own power to rescue them and to win the victory.”

“The greatest form of praise is the sound of consecrated feet seeking out the lost and helpless.” -  Billy Graham.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

THE BITTER END OF SIN



Mel Trotter, the famous rescue mission worker, was the son of a bartender who “drank as much as he served.” Trotter followed in his father’s footsteps, losing job after job because of his addiction to drinking.

Each time he lost a job, he promised to reform & start doing better, but each time he failed.

After the death of his baby son, Trotter made his way to Chicago where he intended to drown himself in Lake Michigan.

He had sold his shoes to get money for another drink & was walking barefoot through the snow toward his death when he went inside the Pacific Garden Mission & was saved.

For the next 40 years, Trotter did everything he could to help those like himself who had fallen prey to the deceptively alluring temptations of sin.

Satan’s advertising is never realistic. He paints beautiful pictures of immediate pleasure, ignoring the real consequences that its participants must endure.

If the beer companies ran ads filled with crashed cars, paralyzed drinkers & the tiny caskets of babies killed by drunk drivers, it would not help them sell their product. So they focus on the beginning rather than the ending.

But no matter how beautiful the temptation appears, it is only a mask for the reality that sin always ends in pain, heartbreak & judgment.

As Bible says:  “…sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.” (James 1:15).

Source: ‘Man with a Mission: Mel Trotter and His Legacy for the Rescue Mission Movement’, Leona Hertel (ministry127.com)

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

UNSELFISHNESS



Bishop Thoburn was one of the world's greatest missionaries & served over 50 years in India & the Far East.

But the world does not know so well that his brother stayed at home & worked & saved to send him through school & to get him ready for his life work.

That brother, like Peter's brother Andrew, did not become famous. He stayed back on the farm & made his brother famous, as Andrew helped Peter, who became the great leader.

If they could not do great things, they could help others close to them to do them.

- Pilgrim Sunday School Quarterly. (moreillustrations.com)

Phi 2:4 (GW): “Don’t be concerned only about your own interests, but also be concerned about the interests of others.”

“If I have seen further than others, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants.” -  Isaac Newton.

Monday, October 2, 2017

PRAYER



Some 500 years ago in London, a number of poor men were praying for liberty to read the Bible. On the spot where that prayer meeting was held stand the buildings of the Bible Society today.

- (moreillustrations.com)

Lord Jesus said: “So I tell you to believe that you have received the things you ask for in prayer, and God will give them to you.”  (Mk 11:24 NCV)

“If you are stranger to prayer you are stranger to power.” -  Billy Sunday.

“Prayer is simply a two-way conversation between you and God.” -  Billy Graham.           

Sunday, October 1, 2017

REBELLION



The story is told about the father of a vacationing family who came across a large sign that read, “Road Closed. Do Not Enter.”

The man proceeded around the sign because he was confident it would save them time. His wife was resistant to the adventure, but there was no turning back for this persistent road warrior.

After a few miles of successful navigation, he began to boast about his gift of discernment. His proud smile was quickly replaced with humble sweat when the road led to a washed-out bridge.

He turned the car around & retraced his tracks to the main road. When they arrived at the original warning sign he was greeted by large letters on the back of the sign “Welcome back, stupid!”

Sometimes we can have utmost confidence in ourselves to figure out issues or fix problems, but we let ourselves down. Confidence is only as good as the object it’s placed in. 

When going through life, the wise person places their confidence in an unchanging, all-powerful God.

- (ministry127.com)

"Sometimes Satan provokes us to harden our spirit. It can become stiff, unyielding, narrow and selfish. Such a spirit cannot work with God nor can it do His will.” -  Watchman Nee.

Pro 9:12 (GNT): “You are the one who will profit if you have wisdom, and if you reject it, you are the one who will suffer.” 


Friday, September 29, 2017

FOOLISH BIRDS AND PEOPLE



One morning I wanted to feed the birds. It was gray & cold & the ground was covered with snow. I stepped out on the porch & flung them handfuls of crumbs & called to them.

No. there they sat, cold & hungry & afraid. They did not trust me

As I sat & watched & waited, it seemed to me I could get God's viewpoint more clearly than ever before. He offers, plans, waits, hopes, longs for all things for our good. But He has to watch & wait as I did for my timid friends.

- Sunday School Times. (moreillustrations.com)

2 Chr 16:9 (GNT): “The Lord keeps close watch over the whole world, to give strength to those whose hearts are loyal to him...”

“No soul can be really at rest until it has given up all dependence on everything else and has been forced to depend on the Lord alone. As long as our expectation is from other things, nothing but disappointment awaits us.” -  Hannah Whitall Smith.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

ME-SICKNESS




The French speak of a disease which they call La Maladie du moi, or "Me-sickness."

The disciples were troubled with that disease; they were too much concerned with themselves.

Despite all the strides science has made, it has offered no vaccine to combat this deadly ailment.

The only remedy that has ever been effective was that offered by the Great Physician. His love engenders selflessness for selfishness in the heart of man & "Me-sickness" vanishes as does the morning mist before the sun's healing rays.

- Sunday School Times. (moreillustrations.com)

Js 3:16 (ERV): “Where there is jealousy and selfishness, there will be confusion and every kind of evil.”

“It has been my experience that when you really come to the Lord, He never sends you away empty unless you come to Him stuffed full of yourself.” - Prophecy Monthly.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

POISON OR PURE WATER?



There are poisons that look like crystal spring water. A glass of such poison, placed next to a glass of clear water will fool the eye; the two look exactly alike.

But one has death in it, the other life. You have to discover by other means than drinking the true nature of the two liquids.

In the same way there are many things in life that are deadly, but have the seeming appearance of goodness.

This is why, when you must make a choice about some pleasure, amusement, or action, you must not come to your decision on the basis of appearances.

- ‘Let Me Illustrate’, Donald Barnhouse (ministry127.com)

Pro 14:12 (RSV): “There is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.”

“What fools are they who, for a drop of pleasure, drink a sea of wrath.” -  Thomas Watson.


Tuesday, September 26, 2017

IDENTITY WITH CHRIST ALONE…



A woman named Damaris! How strange a thing is fame!

The names of all those philosophers in that distinguished congregation to which Paul preached on Mars Hill, save the one who believed in Christ, are forgotten.

But here is a woman named Damaris, whose name is immortal because she heard Paul preach & found the Lord Jesus Christ.

Here is a parable of life & immortality. Identity with Christ alone gives us permanence in a fixed place & destiny amid the flying fragments of time.

- (moreillustrations.com)

Acts 17:33-34 (CEV): “When Paul left the council meeting, some of the men put their faith in the Lord and went with Paul. One of them was a council member named Dionysius. A woman named Damaris and several others also put their faith in the Lord.”

“To be in Christ is the source of the Christian's life; to be like Christ is the sum of His excellence; to be with Christ is the fullness of His joy.” -  Charles Hodge.

Monday, September 25, 2017

The Story behind Rescue the Perishing



Fanny Crosby loved sharing the Gospel with anyone who would listen. In 1869 she penned the words to “Rescue the Perishing.”

When asked about the song, she explained, “It was written following a personal experience at the New York City Bowery Mission.” She went on to explain that she would go one night a week to talk to “her boys.”

One night while speaking to them, she kept having the thought that there was a boy present who had wandered away from his mother & must be rescued that night, or he would be eternally lost. She made a plea to each boy that was there that night.

At the end of the service, one of the young men came forward & said, “Did you mean me, Miss Crosby? I promised my mother to meet her in Heaven, but as I am now living that will be impossible.”

She prayed with him & led him to Christ. As they finished, he said, “Now I am ready to meet my mother in Heaven, for I have found God.”

- ‘Amazing Grace: 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions,’ Kenneth Osbeck (ministry127.com)

1 Cor 14:24-25 (ICB): But suppose everyone is prophesying and someone comes in who does not believe or is without understanding. If everyone is prophesying, his sin will be shown to him, and he will be judged by all that he hears. The secret things in his heart will be made known. So he will bow down and worship God. He will say, “Truly, God is with you.”

Sunday, September 24, 2017

SACRIFICIAL LOVE



Maria Dyer was born in 1837 on the mission field in China where her parents were pioneer missionaries. Both her parents died when Maria was a little girl & she was sent back to England to be raised by an uncle.

The loss of her parents, however, did not deter her young heart from the importance of sharing the gospel. At 16 she, along with her sister, returned to China to work in a girl’s school as a missionary herself. 5 years later, she married Hudson Taylor, a man well-known today for his life of faith & sacrifice.

Hudson & Maria’s work was often criticized - even by other Christians. At one point Maria wrote:  “As to the harsh judging of the world, or the more painful misunderstandings of Christian brethren, I generally feel that the best plan is to go on with our work & leave God to vindicate our cause.”

Of their 9 children, only 4 survived to adulthood. Maria herself died of cholera when she was just 43. But she believed the cause was worthy of the sacrifice. On her grave these words were inscribed: “For her to live was Christ, and to die was gain.” (Phi 1:21).

In a day when many are self-absorbed & care more about what they can get rather than what they can give, we need a renewal of sacrificial love.

It was God’s love for us that sent Jesus into the world to die for our sins & it is that kind of giving love that our world needs so greatly today.

When we love God as we should, our interests fade as we magnify Him.

- ‘The Jubilee Story of the China Inland Mission’, Marshall Broomhall (ministry127.com)

Friday, September 22, 2017

CURE TO DEATH



Napoleon Bonaparte said, “I die before my time; and my body will be given back to earth, to become the food of worms. Such is the fate which so soon awaits the great Napoleon.”

What a contrast to the words of Job: “I know that my Redeemer liveth - and though after my skin worms destroy my body, yet in my flesh shall I see God!” (Job 19. 25, 26)

- (moreillustrations.com)

“Live in Christ, live in Christ, and the flesh need not fear death.” - John Knox.

“If you had the cure to cancer wouldn't you share it? ... You have the cure to death ... get out there and share it.” -  Kirk Cameron.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

FOOLISH TALK



You can always tell when a man's a fool by his chatter and his way. You can always know when a man is wise by the things he does not say.

- Sunshine Magazine (moreillustrations.com)

Js 2:16 (ICB): ‘And you say to him, “God be with you! I hope you stay warm and get plenty to eat.” You say this, but you do not give that person the things he needs. Unless you help him, your words are worth nothing.’

"Talk that does not end in any kind of action is better suppressed altogether." - Thomas Carlyle.

“More depends on my walk than talk.” -  D.L. Moody.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

GRACE IS A GIFT



Imagine you are half a million dollars in debt. Someone comes to you & writes out a check for $500,000, saying:

“This is all for you, to cancel your debt. You don’t have to do anything but reach out & take it, and it’s yours.”

So you take the money & pay your debt. You are now debt-free & totally in the clear.

What do you have to boast about? Can you go around bragging that you had the skill & the brains to reach out & take that check? Does that make any sense?

Of course not. You received grace - nothing more, nothing less. The fact that you are now debt-free is a hundred percent due to your benefactor, zero percent due to you.

Who, then, deserves the praise & glory for your salvation? Clearly, not you! You have received riches from the resources of God. His grace made it all possible.

“I do not want to be proud of anything except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. Because of the cross, the ways of this world are dead to me, and I am dead to them.” – Paul (Gal 6:14 NLV).

- (ministry127.com)

“The doctrines of grace humble man without degrading him and exalt him without inflating him.” -  Charles Hodge.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

LOVE THROUGH THE DARK



A father & little daughter buried the mother of the home. They were broken-hearted when they returned to the old home after the funeral & things were so different.

The little daughter was placed in her bed for the night as usual. The father retired, but could not sleep.
After a while the little daughter said, "Papa, it is so dark." And then, after a while the little child said, "Papa, you love through the dark, don't you?"

Away in the dark hours of the night the father looked up into the face of Jesus & said, "Jesus, thou dost love though it is dark."

Jesus loves His children & no night is so dark that He does not see us.

- Sunday School Times. (moreillustrations.com)

Ps 112:4 (NIRV): “Even in the darkness light shines on honest people. It shines on those who are kind and tender and godly.”

“Having the answers is not essential to living. What is essential is the sense of God's presence during dark seasons of questioning.” -  Ravi Zacharias.

Monday, September 18, 2017

WHY GOD WATCHES US



The biographer of Bishop Watts, Ditchfield, relates that when a child he was one day in the house of a very old woman, who asked him to read a framed text, "Thou God seest me."

Then she said: "When you are older, people will tell you that God is always watching you to see when you do wrong, in order to punish you. I do not want you to think of it in that way, but I want you to take the text home & to remember all your life that God loves you so much He cannot take his eyes off you."

- Sunday School Times.  (moreillustrations.com)

Ps 121:3 (TLB): “He will never let me stumble, slip, or fall. For he is always watching, never sleeping.”

Ps 121:5 (NLT): “The Lord himself watches over you! The Lord stands beside you as your protective shade.”

“You can see God from anywhere if your mind is set to love and obey Him.” -  A.W. Tozer.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

HOW GOD LOVES AND GIVES



Peter Mackenzie, a Methodist preacher of a generation ago, living in England, preached an early sermon from John 3:16.

Gipsy Smith tells us that the preacher said, after announcing the text: "There are two striking things in my text: When God loves He loves a world. When He gives, He gives His Son."

Such is the boundless love of the eternal Father of mankind.

- Sunday School Times. (moreillustrations.com)

Ep 2:4 (GNT): “But God's mercy is so abundant, and his love for us is so great.”

“By the cross we know the gravity of sin and the greatness of God's love toward us.” -  John Chrysostom.

“If we comprehend what Christ has done for us, then surely out of gratitude we will strive to live 'worthy' of such great love. We will strive for holiness not to make God love us but because He already does.” -  Philip Yancey.

Friday, September 15, 2017

THE OPEN DOOR



A lady had been away from home in the afternoon & upon her return, discovered that she had lost the key to the door.

She thought to herself, how unfortunate! And time is pressing.

She went to three neighbors & borrowed as many keys, in the hope that one would fit. But not one of them would do.

Finally someone asked if she had tried the latch. She replied in a spiritless voice, "No, but I will." She did & found that the door had been unlocked all the time & walked in.

What a good illustration this is of the anxious soul, in his desire to approach God. He stands outside, with his mind full of doubts & fears as to his welcome.

He believes there are many things in the way before he may see the Savior, when the door is not only unlocked but stands wide open, with a cordial invitation to enter.

- Messages of Love. (moreillustrations.com)

Lord Jesus said: “Come to me, all who are tired from carrying heavy loads and I will give you rest.” (Matt 11:28 GW):

“A man can slip into hell with his hand on the door-knob of heaven.” -  Billy Sunday.

TRIALS HAVE A PURPOSE



Gold is one of the most valuable materials on earth. It has been used for centuries as money, but it also has many uses in industry & even space flight. One of the traits that makes gold so useful is that it can be shaped & formed so easily.

But gold ore dug out of the ground contains many other elements that must be removed prior to the gold being useful. The refining process for gold involves intense heat. Gold melts at a temperature of almost 2000 degrees Fahrenheit. That incredibly high temperature is required for gold to be ready to be used.

The Christian life involves much the same process. Sometimes we are surprised when ‘bad things happen to good people.’

But the Scripture tells us that fiery trials are part of God’s refining process for our lives. Rather than complaining when trials come, we should rejoice as we think of the end result they will produce.

- (ministry127.com)

Js 1:2-4 (GNT): “My friends, consider yourselves fortunate when all kinds of trials come your way, for you know that when your faith succeeds in facing such trials, the result is the ability to endure. Make sure that your endurance carries you all the way without failing, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.”

“Faith for my deliverance is not faith in God. Faith means, whether I am visibly delivered or not, I will stick to my belief that God is love. There are some things learned only in a fiery furnace.”- Oswald Chambers.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

COLLECTIVELY WE MAKE THE BODY OF CHRIST



A traveler, as he passed through a forest saw a part of a huge oak, which appeared misshapen & almost seemed to spoil the scenery.

"If," said he, "I was the owner of this forest, I would cut down that tree."

But when he had ascended the hill & taken a full view of the forest, this same tree appeared the most beautiful part of the landscape.

"How erroneously," said he, "I judged when I saw only a part!"

The full view, the harmony & proportion of things, are all necessary to clear up our judgment.

- Olin (moreillustrations.com)

1 Cor 12:12-13 & 27 (ERV): “A person has only one body, but it has many parts... Christ is like that too.  Some of us are Jews and some of us are not... But we were all baptized to become one body…  All of you together are the body of Christ. Each one of you is a part of that body.”

“God cares nothing about our manmade divisions and groups and is not interested in our self-righteous, hair-splitting, and religious, man-made formulas and organizations. He wants you to recognize the UNITY of the body of Christ.” -  M.R. DeHaan.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

CHOOSE YOUR WORDS CAREFULLY



President Calvin Coolidge was famously known as a man of few words. His nickname was “Silent Cal.”

His wife, Grace Coolidge, told the story of a young woman who sat next to her husband at a dinner party. She told Coolidge she had a bet with a friend that she could get at least three words of conversation from him.

Without looking at her he quietly retorted, “You lose.”

Coolidge understood very well the value of using only carefully considered words - and those being few in number.

In a time when people reveal their most personal information in the most public ways without thought or hesitation, it is important for us to recapture this piece of wisdom.

Truly wise believers do not feel the need to tell everything they know to everyone they meet - much less to total strangers. Instead they choose their words with care, recognizing the responsibility that comes with our speech.

Lord Jesus said: “I tell you that everyone will have to answer for all the careless things they have said. This will happen on the Day of Judgment.”  (Mat 12:36 ERV)

- ‘The Presidents of the United States of America’, Frank Freidel & Hugh S. Sidey (ministry127.com)

“Learn to hold thy tongue; five words cost Zacharias forty weeks of silence.” -  Thomas Fuller.

Monday, September 11, 2017

TRUE HAPPINESS NOT IN MONEY



This is illustrated in the history of two kings, Croesus, King of Lydia, born in 590 B.C., had immense wealth & lived luxuriously. He filled his house with all manner of costly treasures. He thought he was the happiest of mortals.

Solon, one of the seven wise men of Greece, paid him a visit & was received into a magnificent chamber. Solon showed no surprise or admiration. The king, angry at his indifference, asked Solon, “Why do you not think me the most truly happy?”

Solon replied: “No man can be esteemed truly happy but he whose happiness God continues to the end of his life.”

Cyrus, noted for his liberality, was a king loved by his people. He was rich but gave much away. “My treasures,” he said, “are the hearts & affections of my people.”

1 Tim 6:17-19 (NIV): “Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.  Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share.  In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.”

- (moreillustrations.com)

Sunday, September 10, 2017

PRAYING FOR OTHERS



A guest at a country house coming down to breakfast one morning was met by the child of the house, who running up to him & putting his hand in his, looked up into his face with a smile, saying:

"I'm your friend now; I put you in my prayer last night!"

Something of this spirit is in Col. 1:3 (ERV) that says: “In our prayers we always thank God for you...”

- (moreillustrations.com)

“No man can do me a truer kindness in this world than to pray for me.” -  Charles Spurgeon.

“Every time I pray for all of you, I do it with joy.” – Paul (Phil 1:4 GW).

“It is not only our duty to pray for others, but also to desire the prayers of others for ourselves.” -  William Gurnall.

BE PREPARED



The optimistic pessimist explained why he always dined in restaurants where music was provided:

"Because it works two ways: sometimes the music helps to make me forget the food, and sometimes the food helps to make me forget the music."

"Hope for the best, plan for the worst." - Lee Child.

Pro 22:3 (GNT): "Sensible people will see trouble coming and avoid it, but an unthinking person will walk right into it and regret later."

Thursday, September 7, 2017

THE BOOK OF REEVALUATION



In one Peanuts comic strip Sally was struggling with her memory verse for Sunday. She was absorbed in her thoughts trying to figure it out when she remembered, “Maybe it was something from the book of Reevaluation.”

She never did find the memory verse, but we should always read the Bible with the intent of reevaluating our attitudes & actions to make sure they are in line with the truth of God’s Word.

- (ministry127.com)

Pro 16:2 (GNT): “You may think everything you do is right, but the Lord judges your motives.”

“Many people live righteously for selfish or misguided reasons. If you are striving to please God, examine your motives today.” -  Paul Chappell.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

MISSIONS


A lad who heard his father pray for missions, and especially for the needs of missionaries, that they might be supplied, and that their institutions might be amply sustained, said to him:

"Father, I wish I had your money."

"Why, my son, what would you do with it?" asked the father.

"I would answer your prayers," was the reply.

- (moreillustrations.com)

2 Cor 9:6 (GNT): “Remember that the person who plants few seeds will have a small crop; the one who plants many seeds will have a large crop.”

“It's what you sow that multiplies, not what you keep in the barn.” -  Adrian Rogers.