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March 2010 Archives

Printable Issue 1768  Today is Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010; Karen's Korner #1768
(Back after a few days away!)
 
For Christmas I gave my sister, Jan, a daily devotional book authored by Anne Gram Lotz titled "The Joy of My Heart". She likes reading the kinds of books which a person can just pick up and read several pages.
 
On Friday late afternoon, February 12th, our brother-in-law Dave died unexpectedly. As our family began to deal with the news, Jan thought, "I wonder what my book has as its reading for the day?"
 
Here is what she found:
 
NO MORE TEARS
 
"God will wipe away every tear from their eyes;
there shall be no more death, nor sorrows, nor crying."
-- Revelation 21:4 NKJV
 
    One day; God Himself will take your face in His hands and gently wipe away your tears as He reassures you there will be no more suffering.
   
    There will be no more.......
            suicide bombers or fiery infernos,
                    broken homes or broken hearts,
                            broken lives or broken dreams.......
 
    No more cancer or strokes or AIDS.....
 
    No more war!
 
    You can look forward with hope, because one day there will be.....
 
            no more separation,
                    no more scars,
                            no more suffering-----
                                    no more tears at all-----
 
    in My Father's House.
 
****
 
 
God has a way of making Himself known!
  
 
Printable Issue 1769  Today is Thursday, March 4th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1769
The ministerial association in our community is hosting a Wednesday morning Lenten breakfast each week during the Easter season. They are using the booklet "Living with the Mind of Christ" by James A. Harnish.
 
Last week's topic was Love; yesterday's was Servanthood.
 
Our natural tendency is to 'look out for #1; ourselves'; not to serve or look out for others.
 
Reverend Geoffrey White read the "You might be a 'me-first mind-set' if....(taken from the booklet and shortened):
 
10. ...you pull into a parking space ahead of the retired guy......who has been waiting with his turn signal flashing while the other car pulled out;
 
9. .....you sneak into the express checkout line in a crowded grocery store with more than the ten items;
 
8. .... you empty the last scoop of ice cream, finish the last piece of pecan pie, or sneak away with the last chocolate chip cookie....when nobody else in the family is looking;
 
7. ....you forget to tell your parents about the call which came in on 'call waiting' while you were talking to a friend;
 
6. .... you pass along the dirty little rumor about a friend because it somehow makes you look better;
 
5. .... you vote for a candidate soley......because it will benefit your bottom line....
 
4. .....you accept credit from your boss for a job you know someone else has done;
 
3. .....you assume that anyone who doesn't like the same movies, music, or TV shows than you do is a person with little/no taste;
 
2. .... you give your spouse a gift that was something you really wanted for yourself;
 
1. .....you feel a sigh of relief in knowing that you aren't as poorly dressed, ill-mannered, unimportant, unintelligent, or tacky as all the self-centered sinners who are sitting around you in church.
 
The writer goes on to say, "We are all afflicted with the 'me-first mind-set'. The only way I know to be set from from its bondage is to begin to discover the mind-set of Jesus, who came among us not to be served, but to serve."
Printable Issue 1770  Today is Friday, March 5th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1770
Our winter has been a long one. A thought I had quite often is that God has so ordered the universe that no matter what we were watching or experiencing..........spring was coming!!
 
Here is one chapter from Psalms:
Psalm 19 (New Living Translation)

 1 The heavens proclaim the glory of God.
      The skies display his craftsmanship.
 2 Day after day they continue to speak;
      night after night they make him known.
 3 They speak without a sound or word;
      their voice is never heard.
 4 Yet their message has gone throughout the earth,
      and their words to all the world. 

   God has made a home in the heavens for the sun.
 5 It bursts forth like a radiant bridegroom after his wedding.
      It rejoices like a great athlete eager to run the race.
 6 The sun rises at one end of the heavens
      and follows its course to the other end.
      Nothing can hide from its heat. 

 7 The instructions of the Lord are perfect,
      reviving the soul.
   The decrees of the Lord are trustworthy,
      making wise the simple.
 8 The commandments of the Lord are right,
      bringing joy to the heart.
   The commands of the Lord are clear,
      giving insight for living.
 9 Reverence for the Lord is pure,
      lasting forever.
   The laws of the Lord are true;
      each one is fair.
 10 They are more desirable than gold,
      even the finest gold.
   They are sweeter than honey,
      even honey dripping from the comb.
 11 They are a warning to your servant,
      a great reward for those who obey them.

 12 How can I know all the sins lurking in my heart?
      Cleanse me from these hidden faults.
 13 Keep your servant from deliberate sins!
      Don’t let them control me.
   Then I will be free of guilt
      and innocent of great sin.

 14 May the words of my mouth
      and the meditation of my heart
   be pleasing to you,
      O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.

****
 
Commentary on a couple of the verses:   "We are surrounded by fantastic displays of God's craftsmanship--the heavens give dramatic evidence of his existence, his power, his love, his care. To say that the universe happened by chance is absurd--its intricacy and dependability give proof of a personally involved Creator. As you look at God's craftsmanship in nature and the heavens, thank Him for such magnificent beauty and the truth it reveals about the Creator."
Printable Issue 1771  Today is Monday, March 8th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1771
A writing I received from Shirley Choat more than two years ago:
 

"and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justly, and to love mercy,
and to walk humbly with your God?"

~~ Micah 6:8

   If I were to challenge the most prominent “voices” in Christianity today I’m thinking that humility is the virtue we Christians are most lacking. This is noted by those outside our walls, and outside our love. We take the gift of our redemption, our belongingness in the body of Christ, our being claimed by Christ, and twist it to find ways to cheapen and devalue the “other”, our brothers and sisters in God’s family. We use our redemption as a way to push ourselves higher in the estimation of God, ourselves and others.

   The call to humility is to lower our egos to the point that we can freely, generously serve with authentic compassion, rather than condescension, pity, and arrogance. Humility is not just between ourselves and God. It is among ourselves. We need to authentically see our own worth, but also the worth of our neighbor, stranger, even our enemy. So many of Jesus’ parables and life teachings were object lessons in humility. Perhaps we should consider reviving the practice of washing of feet. The deafening arrogance of our religious culture and political culture seems to be calling for it.

  Jesus demonstrated humility by walking in total dependence on His Father and by serving others. Only as we take up His yoke and walk humble with the Father will we learn true humility.  Are we humbly depending on God, or just pretending to be humble?

Humility's a slippery prize

That seldom can be won.

We're only humble in God's eyes

When serving like His Son.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY - To learn to walk humbly, start out on your knees.

***

Printable Issue 1772  Today is Tuesday, March 9th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1772
This is an introduction to a letter from Paul to his friend Titus who was a church leader on the island of Crete:
 
"From:
Paul, the slave of God and the messenger of Jesus Christ.
I have been sent to bring faith to those God has chosen
and to teach them to know God's truth--
the kind of truth that changes lives--
so that they can have eternal life,
which God promised them before the world began--
and he cannot lie.
 
And now in his own good time he has revealed this Good News
and permits me to tell everyone.
By command of God our Savior
I have been trusted to do this work for him."
 
~~ TITUS 1:1-3 (Life Application Bible)
 
Bible Commentary:  "The foundation of our faith is trust in God's character. Because he is truth, he is the source of all truth and cannot lie. The eternal life he has promised will be ours because he keeps his promises. Build your faith on the foundation of a trustworthy God who will not lie.
 
"God is called 'our Savior' as is Jesus. Jesus did the work of salvation by dying for our sins and therefore is our Savior. God planned the work of salvation and forgives our sins, thus, he is our Savior as well. Both the Father and the Son are involved in saving us."
 
Dear Father God, thank You for Your living and dying to save us from our sins and from ourselves. Thank You for Easter. In the name of Your Son Jesus who died but came back to life, Amen.
Printable Issue 1773  Today is Wednesday, March 10th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1773
Today's Karen's Korner are three quotes from a daily flip calendar with quotes from Mother Teresa titled "Heart of Joy"; these are taken from days right around today's date.
 
This morning I heard that Mother Teresa spent most of her life on her knees:  in prayer and scrubbing the floors in her outreach faciliites in India. The television personality said that even though she headed the ministries, she believed it was necessary to remain faithful, humble, and filled with humility, so she scrubbed floors....
 
 
"Let us keep the joy of loving Jesus in our hearts.
And let's share that joy with everyone we meet.
Passing on joy is something which is very natural.
We have no reason for not being joyful, since Christ is with us.
Christ is in our hearts."
 
~
 
"We need to be able to pray.
We need prayer just like we need air.
Without prayer, we can do nothing."
 
~
 
"Every time we need to make a decision concerning our families,
we need to pray.
Jesus said, 'Ask and you will receive.
Seek and you will find.
Knock and the door will be opened.'
Nothing will be denied you."
 
***
Printable Issue 1774  Today is Thursday, March 11th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1774
Several weeks ago, my sister and I traveled to Arizona for parts of six days. Among other things, we caught up with long-time friends Jim and Joan Sellers who live part of the year in Iowa and part in Arizona.
 
Avid sports fan, Joan and Jim told how much Arizonians in general, Arizona Cardinal footballs fans in particular, have come to love its newly-retired quarterback Kurt Warner. Not only is he regarded for his efforts on the football field, he is also known for what he does off the field as well.
 
Joan said, "His fans across the Phoenix area and the state of Arizona know that when Kurt, wife Brenda, and their family (the couple has seven children!) go out to a restaurant, they begin to look for a family for whom they might be able to purchase their meals." The Warners try to observe someone who they collectively believe might look to be a little down in their luck or maybe needing a special blessing that day.
 
"Once the family agrees on who should be the recipient," said Joan, "they tell the waitress for whom they would like to buy their meals. The waitress is not to tell the fortunate diners who bought their meals." She said Kurt and Brenda come from modest means and know how fortunate and blessed for what they have today. They want nothing more than to share some of what they have been given.
 
What a blessing they are to the area! What a lesson the Warners are giving to the rest of their family! And what a witness to those who are area residents. Those residents are watching, respecting and modeling that behavior. "Others are taking Kurt and Brenda's lead and they do the same thing," said Joan. "Someone will pay for the meal for a car behind them when they drive through McDonald's or are in some other local restaurant." She said she and Jim know of people personally who have done 'the Warner thing' anonymously. Sometimes diners begin to off-handed look around a nice restaurant to see 'if the Warners happen to be dining there'.
 
So now not only do Iowans love their native-born success story and national football legend hero Kurt Warner, so does the state of Arizona and probably Missouri, where Kurt played with the St. Louis Rams a number of years ago. Joan probably speaks for fans everywhere when she mentioned, "People appreciate his wholesomeness. He is a real guy."
 
And not only do people know of Warner's athletic successes, they also know of his (their) Christian faith, as they let others know what Jesus taught all of us when he said, 'it is more blessed to give than to receive...."
Printable Issue 1775  Today is Friday, March 12th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1775
Forwarded by a friend. I don't know if it is true or not; certainly could be. I hope so:
 

JESUS and  THE MUD PUDDLE

Howard County Sheriff Jerry Marr got a disturbing call
one Saturday afternoon a few months ago.
His 6-year-old grandson, Mikey, had been hit by a car
while fishing in Greentown with his dad.

The father and son were near a bridge
by the Kokomo Reservoir
when a woman lost control of her car,
slid off the bridge and hit Mikey
at a rate of about 50 mph.

Sheriff Marr had seen the results of accidents
like this and feared the worst.
When he got to Saint Joseph Hospital ,
he rushed through the emergency
room to find Mikey conscious and in fairly good spirits.

'Mikey, what happened?' Sheriff Marr asked.

Mikey replied, 'Well, Papaw, I was fishin' with
Dad, and some lady runned me over, I flew into a mud puddle,
and broke my fishin' pole and I didn't get to catch
no fish!'

As it turned out, the impact propelled Mikey about
500 feet, over a few trees and an embankment and in
to the middle of a mud puddle.

His only injuries were to his right femur bone,
which had broken in two places.
Mikey had surgery to place pins in his leg.
Other wise the boy is fine.

Since all the boy could talk about was
that his fishing pole was broken,
the Sheriff went out to Wal-Mart
and bought him a new one while he was in surgery
so he could have it when he came out.

The next day the Sheriff sat with Mikey
to keep him company in the hospital.
Mikey was enjoying his new fishing pole
and talked about when he could go fishing again,
as he cast into the trash can.

When they were alone, Mikey, just as matter-of-fact, said,
'Papaw, did you know Jesus is real?'
'Well,' the Sheriff replied, a little startled..
'Yes, Jesus is real to all who believe in Him
and love Him in their hearts.'

'No,' said Mikey. 'I mean Jesus is REALLY
real.'

'What do you mean?' asked the Sheriff.

'I know He's real 'cause I saw Him,' said
Mikey, still casting into the trash can.

'You did?' said the Sheriff.

'Yep,' said Mikey.. 'When that lady runned me
over and broke my fishing pole,
Jesus caught me in His arms
and laid me down in the mud puddle.

***

Printable Issue 1776  Today is Monday, March 15th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1776
A pass along email from Jim Bossard, which I liked; hope that you do as well:
 
Harvey Mackay, tells this wonderful story. For me it shows that leadership is truly not in a title, it is in an attitude.

The story goes; He was waiting in line for a ride at the airport. When a cab pulled up, the first thing Harvey noticed was that the taxi was polished to a bright shine. Smartly dressed in a white shirt, black tie, and freshly pressed black slacks, the cab driver jumped out and rounded the car to open the back passenger door for Harvey.

He handed my friend a laminated card and said: ‘I’m Wally, your driver. While I’m loading your bags in the trunk I’d like you to read my mission statement.’ Taken aback, Harvey read the card. It said: Wally’s Mission Statement: To get my customers to their destination in the quickest, safest and cheapest way possible in a friendly environment.

This blew Harvey away. Especially when he noticed that the inside of the cab matched the outside. Spotlessly clean! As he slid behind the wheel, Wally said, “ Would you like a cup of coffee? I have a thermos of regular and one of decaf?” My friend said jokingly, “No, I’d prefer a soft drink”.

Wally smiled and said, ‘No problem. I have a cooler up front with regular and Diet Coke, water and orange juice?
 
Almost stuttering, Harvey said, “I’ll take a Diet Coke”.
 
Handing him his drink, Wally said, “If you’d like something to read, I have The Wall Street Journal, Time, Sports Illustrated and USA Today”.

As they were pulling away, Wally handed my friend another laminated card. “These are the stations I get and the music they play, if you’d like to listen to the radio.” And as if that weren’t enough, Wally told Harvey that he had the air conditioning on and asked if the temperature was comfortable for him. Then he advised Harvey of the best route to his
destination for that time of day. He also let him know that he’d be happy to chat and tell him about some of the sights or, if Harvey preferred, to leave him with his own thoughts.
 
“Tell me, Wally,” my amazed friend asked the driver, “have you always served customers like this?

Wally smiled into the rear view mirror, “No, not always. In fact, it’s only been in the last two years. My first five years driving, I spent most of my time complaining like all the rest of the cabbies do”. Then I heard a personal growth guru a on the radio one day, who said that if you get up in the morning expecting to have a bad day, you’d rarely disappoint yourself. He said, “Stop complaining! Differentiate yourself from your competition. Don’t be a duck. Be an eagle! Ducks quack and complain. Eagles soar above the crowd.”
 
 “That hit me right between the eyes,” said Wally. The guru was really talking about me. I was always quacking and complaining, so I decided to change my attitude and become an eagle. I looked around at the other cabs and their drivers. The cabs were dirty, the drivers were unfriendly, and the customers were unhappy. So I decided to make some changes. I put in a few at a time. When my customers responded well, I did more.

“I take it that has paid off for you,” Harvey said.
 
“It sure has,” Wally replied. “My first year as an eagle, I doubled my income from the previous year. This year I’ll probably quadruple it. You were lucky to get me today. I don’t sit at cabstands anymore. My customers call me for appointments on my cell phone or leave a message on my answering machine. If I can’t pick them up myself, I get a reliable cabbie friend to do it and I take a piece of the action."

Wally was phenomenal. He was running a limo service out of a Yellow Cab. I’ve probably told that story to more than fifty cab drivers over the years, and only two took the idea and ran with it. Whenever I go to their cities, I give them a call. The rest of the drivers quacked like ducks and told me all the reasons they couldn’t do any of what I was suggesting. Wally the Cab Driver made a different choice. He decided to stop quacking like a duck and start soaring like an eagle.

We have a choice. Which one are you? The Duck or the Eagle…
Printable Issue 1777  Today is Tuesday, March 16th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1777
"The Lord is my fort where I can enter and be safe;
no one can follow me in and slay me.

He is a rugged mountain where I hide;
he is my Savior,
 a rock where none can reach me,
and a tower of safety.
 
He is my shield.
He is like the strong horn of a mighty fighting bull.
 
All I need to do is cry to him --
oh, praise the Lord --
and I am saved from ALL my enemies!"
 
~ Psalm 18:2,3 Amplified Living Bible
 
***
 
Bible Commentary:  God's protection of his people is limitless and can take many forms. David characterized God's care with six military symbols. God is like:  (1) a fort or place of safety where the enemy can't follow; (2) a rugged mountain full of hiding places; (3) a rock that can't be penetrated by any who would harm us; (4) a tower high above our enemies; (5) a shield that comes between us and harm, and (6) a horn to scare the enemy away or to warn us if he comes too close. If you need protection, look to God.
 
****
 
Printable Issue 1778  Today is Wednesday, March 17th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1778
A prayer forwarded to me by Jeanne Russell, hers was complete with graphics; enjoy!
 
The Knots Prayer
 
Dear God,
 
Please untie the knows that are in my mind,
my heart, and my life.
Remove the have nots, the can nots, and the do nots
that I have in my mind.
 
Erase the will nots, may nots,
might nots that may find
a home in my heart.
 
Release me from the could nots,
would nots,
and should nots
that obstrust my life.
 
And most of all,
dear God,
I ask that you remove from my mind,
my heart and my life all of the 'am nots'
that I have allowed to hold me back,
especially the thought that I am not good enough.
 
Amen.
 
~~ Author Known to God
 
***
Printable Issue 1779  Today is Thursday, March 18th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1779
 
Several weeks ago in Sunday School, class members were sharing some of their 'God experiences', when 90-year-old Herb Billman mentioned a couple of 'Holy Spirit thoughts' from World War II.
 
Last Sunday we asked him for more details.
 
Billman spent three years in Europe with the 34th Division of the Army. It was on January 26, 1944 in Mount Casino, Italy when he was hit with an artillery shell which lodged in his right shoulder.
 
"Every time my heart pumped, blood would shoot out," he said. "I had this voice inside my head say, 'Pressure point. Press harder under your arm.' I would press there until I would pass out. Each time I pressed down hard, the blood flow would stop. When I would wake back up, that voice would remind me to do the same thing again."
 
Billman said he had no idea that was what he was supposed to do when he had such an injury. He kept doing that until troops arrived to rescue him and take him off the battlefield. "It was the Holy Spirit telling me what to do that helped to save my life," he said.
 
His injuries were extensive. Billman kept getting moved farther and farther away from enemy lines. First, to be stablized and then to recover. Eventually, he was returned to the United States where he had many surgeries and 'off-and-on' hospital stays for the next three years.
 
Today his hand is somewhat 'crippled up' but it certainly has not 'handicapped' Billman's life nor his thinking. He has had a successful life, family, and career. "I always bowled with my left hand," he said. "I used to write with my left hand (he is right-handed). One day the Holy Spirit told me, 'Write with your right hand. Write with your right hand.' I didn't think I could do it. I tried to write the normal way and it didn't work (holding the pencil between thumb, index and third finger). Then I found if I'd hold it between my third and fourth finger, I could write. Been writing that way ever since. Using my right hand."
 
Billman praises God for his spared life then, and a return to good health several years ago after some health issues, by worshipping Him each Sunday and reading His Word each day.
 
"My life has been good," he said.
Printable Issue 1780  Today is Friday, March 19th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1780
Are you planning to attend Easter activities and events at your church this coming Easter?
 
I heard on the radio several days ago that less than 1/3 of church-goers will invite some un-churched friend to their Easter festivities.
 
What about the ones 'who only come at Christmas and Easter'? Invite them? Do we celebrate people coming now and then? Twice a year? Or do we talk about them behind their backs??
 
I know I am guilty of not inviting others to our Easter or Christmas events. But not this year. I am inviting some to come. Whether they show up or not, that is God's job!
 
**
 
Eighty-plus-year-old Lyman Spencer, who lives in our midst, has never been shy about inviting and encouraging others in, or into, the faith.
 
I bumped into him at a Lenten breakfast and he handed my a business-sized card with these words:
 
Wherever you go, God is sending you.....
Wherever you are, God has put you there.....
He has a purpose in you being there.
 
Christ, who lives in you has something
he wants to do thru you where you are.
Believe this and go in his grace, love, and power.
 
We pray that you will be strengthened
from God's glorious power so that you may be able
to pass through any experience and endure it with joy.
 
***
 
I asked Lyman, "So how many of these did you have printed?''
 
"30,000," was his reply.
 
Some people think Lyman maybe a bit 'over the top'.
 
Be interesting to find out when we meet God in heaven some day, which ones of us are/were 'over the top'... or not.....
Printable Issue 1781  Today is Monday, March 22nd, 2010; Karen's Korner #1781
The last two Sundays, our Sunday School class has been looking at the life of Jesus.
 
After the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, my Bible has a listing of '250 Events in the Life of Christ'; all found in one, two, three, or all four of those gospels. It told of things which happened in his life, things he did, and what he taught. (If you'd like a complete copy of the information which we used for the study, I would be happy to forward it to you!)
 
We selected to look at "His Supernatural Nature".
 
First, his conception and birth were supernatural; his dad learned about his pending birth from an angel. He turned water into wine and told lots of details of her life to the woman at the well. He provided a miraculous catch of fish for fishermen.
 
Jesus healed people on sixteen recorded occasions!
 
He calmed a storm and walked on water; he forgave people of their sins. He fed two large groups of people using a couple of fish and handful of loaves of bread....leaving basketsful of food leftover. He sent demons out of people two different times.
 
He miraculously raised three different people from death, back to life!
 
And, as it is Easter season, we are reminded that most miraculous of all........they crucified him, he died and was buried. But he rose again!!
 
Finally he ascended into heaven; where he lives forever!!
 
And the final verse in the book of Johns says,
 
"And I suppose that if all other events in Jesus' life were written,
the whole world could hardly contain the books!"
~ John 21:25, Life Application Living Bible
 
 
What other person has ever had that kind of resume?? What other person can defy nature, odds, spirits? Past, present, and future??
 
His resume alone makes Him worthy of our honor and praise; our thanks, belief, and trust. He wants us to invite Him to be our Savior.
 
Praise God for Jesus; for His plans for our lives. He gives us a future and a hope!
Printable Issue 1782  Today is Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010; Karen's Korner #1782
"He fills me with strengh and protects me wherever I go.
He gives me the surefootedness of a mountain goat upon the crags.
He leads me safely along the top of the cliffs.
He prepares me for battle and gives me strength to draw an iron bow!
 
- Psalms 18:32-34
Living Bible
 
**
 
Bible Commentary on these verses:  "God promises to give us strength for life-building challenges and protection from life-threatening troubles. But he doesn't promise to eliminate our troubles. If God promised no rough roads, no mountains to climb, and no battles, we would not grow. But with these life-building challenges, he sends strength to overcome. If he left us alone with life-threatening troubles, we would not survive. But God sends his protection. We need his protection to survive life's impossible threats and his strength to grow as we respond to life's challenging circumstances.
 
***
Printable Issue 1783  Today is Wednesday, March 24th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1783
Something sent by Joel and Victoria Osteen, awhile back:
 

Higher Ways

“As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:9).

 

Sometimes it’s easy to get focused on what’s happening in the world around us. We see things on the news or hear something about the economy, and we dwell on those thoughts. Before long, those thoughts start to drag us down. But when we choose to think higher thoughts, the way God thinks, and when we choose to meditate on God’s Word, His higher thoughts will draw us to a higher level of living.

You can live above the stress and pressure of the world because He has promised to give us perfect peace when we keep our minds focused on Him. You can live above financial worries because God has promised that when we follow His Word, He will supply all our needs according to His riches in glory. You can live above fear and dread because God has promised that His perfect love will drive out all fear. Choose God’s higher thoughts today and allow His ways to become Your ways. Open your heart and allow Him to direct your every step. As you do, you will rise higher and higher, and you’ll live the life of victory He has in store for you. 

 

"Father in heaven, I humbly come to You giving You all that I am. Fill me with Your higher thoughts which will lead me in Your higher ways. Help me to look beyond my circumstances to the good things You have in store for me. In Jesus’ Name. Amen. "

Printable Issue 1784  Today is Thursday, March 25th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1784
Taken from the introduction to a Bible study titled "Run the Race" by Bill Hybels; the study is on the book of Philippians:
 
Enter His Joy!
 
"Many people notice that the book of Philippians is filled with joy. One of the signature verses in Philippians is, 'Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again:  Rejoice!' (4:4). It is easy to think that Paul wrote these words from some safe and secure ivory tower. But the truth is, he wrote them as a prisoner in chains. Yet in all of this he had joy beyond description.
 
"When we read the words of Philippians, it is as if God is reaching a hand out to each of us and inviting us to enter His joy. No matter what we are facing today, God can bring joy. No matter how bright or dark your day, He offers hope. No matter what your checkbook balance says, He can provide. No matter how shady your past might be, your future can be filled iwth joy beyond measure, Even if your feet are blistered, your legs are weak, and you don't feel like you can take another step, God invites you to joy beyond your wildest dreams and offers strength to run the race to win!"
Printable Issue 1785  Today is Friday, March 26th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1785

John 12:12-19 (NIV)

The Triumphal Entry
 The next day the great crowd that had come for the Feast
heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem.
They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting,
   "Hosanna!"
   "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!"
   "Blessed is the King of Israel!"
 
Jesus found a young donkey and sat upon it, as it is written, 
 "Do not be afraid, O Daughter of Zion;
      see, your king is coming,
      seated on a donkey's colt."
 
At first his disciples did not understand all this.
Only after Jesus was glorified did they realize that the these things had been written about him
and that they had done these things to him.
 
Now the crowd that was with him when he called Lazarus from the tomb
and raised him from the dead
continued to spread the word.
Many people, because they had heard that he had given this miraculous sign,
went out to meet him.
 
So the Pharisees said to one another,
"See this is getting us nowhere. Look how the whole world has gone after him!"
 
***
 
Bible Commentary:  "The people came to Jesus because they had heard of his great miracle in raising Lazarus from the dead. Their adoration was short-lived and their commitment shallow, for in a few days they would do nothing to stop his crucifixion. Devotion based only on curiosity or popularity fades quickly."
 
***
 
Dear Jesus, This week we will wave palm branches in our places of worship to remember your victory ride into Jerusalem. But in a few days, we will recall that some of the same people who waved those branches did nothing to help stop your crucifixion. We are like those people. Waving palm branches when it is easy; standing by and doing nothing when it is harder. Forgive us; forgive our humanness. Help us to do what You would have us do today and every day to reach out, to serve, to care, to share and to spread Your Love and Good News. We won't attempt it or do it, without Your Help. We want every day to be like Palm Sunday when we celebrate with You, Your Victory Lap. Thank you. Amen.
 
****

 

 

Printable Issue 1786  Today is Monday, March 29th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1786
John 1:29 -NIV:

 The next day John (the Baptist) saw Jesus coming toward him and said, "Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!"

Bible Commentary:  "Every morning, a lamb was sacrificed in the Temple for the sins of the people. Isaiah 53:7 prophesied that the Messiah, God's Servant, would be led to slaughter like a lamb. To pay the penalty for sin, a life had to be given--and God chose to provide the sacrifice himself. The sins of the world were removed when Jesus died as the perfect sacrifice. This is the way our sins are forgiven. The 'world's sin' means everyone's sin, the sin of each individual. Jesus paid the price of your sin by his death. You can receive forgiveness by confessing your sin to him and asking for his forgiveness."
 
***
 
Printable Issue 1787  Today is Tuesday, March 30th, 2010; Karen's Korner #1787
Something that Mariel Betts enjoyed and shared with me:
 
JUST THINK
 
You're here not by chance,
but by God's choosing.
 
His Hand formed you
and made you
the person you are.
 
He compares you to no one else --
You are one of a kind.
 
You lack nothing
that His grace can't give you.
 
He has allowed you to be here
at this time in history
to fulfill His special purpose
for this generation.
 
~~ Written by Day Spring co-found Ray Lessin
 
**
Printable Issue 1788  Today is Wednesday, March 31st, 2010; Karen's Korner #1788
Taken from "Sparkling Gems", a 365 Greek word studies for every day, by Rick Renner. Today's is about the arrest of Jesus (in part):
 
How Many Soldiers Does It Take To Arrest One Man?
 

"So Judas, obtaining and taking charge of the band of soldiers and some guards of the high priests and Pharisees, came there with lanterns and torches and weapons."

~ John 18:3
 
"Jesus has the greatest power in the whole universe! When He walked the earth, He healed the sick, cast out demons, raised the dead, walked on water, changed water into winte, and multiplied loaves and fish. In fact, Jesus performed so many miracles that the apostle John said 'if they had written down every one....the world itself could not contain the books.....'
 
"Satan was terrified of Jesus. That's why the enemy inspired Herod the Great to try to kill the infant Messiah by slaughtering all the babies in Bethlehem and the surrounding region. When that failed, the devil tried to wipe out Jesus by attempting to seduce Him with temptations in the wilderness. And when that failed, the devil tried to kill Jesus on numerous occasions using angry religious people!
 
".......many times religious leaders tried and failed to catch Jesus. The Gospels are filled with examples when He supernaturally slipped out of the hands of His aggressors.
 
"Now it was time for Satan's next attempt using Judas and it seems the devil was worried he wouldn't succeed again. Thus, the enemy inspired Judas to lead a massive group of Roman soldiers and temple police to arrest Jesus. There were far too many soldiers in this group to capture just one individual--unless that individual was the Son of God!"
 
Renner goes on to describe 'what a band of soldiers' and 'some guards of high priests and Pharisees' might be. The soldiers would have been between 300 and 600 specially trained soldiers. Add to that number guards for the high priests and Pharisees.
 
Matthew, Mark, and Luke tell that the crowd was 'a huge multitude', ' a massive crowd', 'the band of soldiers was enormous'. We can therefore conclude that when the Roman soldiers and temple police arrived to arrest Jesus, the hillside where the Garden was located was literally covered wtih Roman soldiers and highly trained militia....
 
Were Judas and his arresters afraid that Jesus might use His supernatural power to resist them?
 
Was Jesus captured because there was a 'multitude of soldiers and guards' after Him? Or because it was allowed as part of a bigger plan?
 
Renner continues, "It thrills my heart to think of the power of Jesus Christ! Even more thrilling is the knowledge that the same power that flowed through Him when He walked on this earth now flows through you and me. The same Holy Spirit who anointed Jesus to fulfill His ministry has been sent to empower you and me to do the same works He did! In fact, Jesus prophesied that we would do even greater works (John 14:12). This is the kind of power that operates in you and me!"
 
"Lord, I am so thankful You possess the greatest power in the whole universe!
I'm not serving a dead god; I'm serving a living Lord who is interceding for me
at the right hand of the Father at this very moment.
Jesus, I come to You as my great High Priest,
and I ask You today to fill me with Your power 24 hours a day,
365 days a year.
I don't want to just intellectually know about You;
I want to truly know You.
I want to experience Your power and walk in Your ways!"
I pray this in Jesus' name!
 
**