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February 2012 Archives

Printable Issue 2248  Today is Wednesday, February 1st, 2012; Karen's Korner #2248
A couple of saying from the OUR IOWA magazine, February/March issue, its 'Side Notes' typed along the edges of the magazine pages:
 
Sometimes the tiniest flowers
smell the sweetest.
 
~
 
If you don't know where you are going,
you'll wind up someplace else.
~ Yogi Berra
 
~
 
You are never a loser
until you give up trying.
~ Mike Ditka
 
~
 
The love of family
is life's greatest blessing.
 
~
 
Friends are like stars -
you don't always see them,
but you know they're always there.
 
~
 
Do not ask the Lord to guide your footsteps,
if you are not wiling to move your feet.
 
~
 
Be careful of your thoughts.....
they may turn into words.
 
~
 
Faith means believing the unbelievable.
Hope means hoping when everything seems hopeless.
 
~
 
He has the right to criticize,
who has a heart to help.
~ Abraham Lincoln
 
***
Printable Issue 2249  Today is Thursday, February 2nd, 2012; Karen's Korner #2249
Here is a chapter from Isaiah; chapter 35 titled "Streams in the Desert". It is a 'beautiful picture of the final Kingdom in which God will establish his justice and destroy evil. This is the world the faithful can anticipate after the judgment when creation itself will rejoice in God......when life will be peaceful at last.":
 
Get ready; God's good news is coming!
 
Even the wilderness and desert will rejoice in those days;
the desert will blossom with flowers.
Yes, there will be an abundance of flowers
and singing and joy!
 
The deserts will become as green
as the Lebanon mountains,
as lovely as Mount Carmel's pastures
and Sharon's meadows;
for the Lord will display his glory there,
the excellence of our God.
 
With this news bring cheer to all discouraged ones.
Encourage those who are afraid.
Tell them,
"Be strong,
fear not,
for your God is coming to destroy your enemies.
He is coming to save you."
 
And when he comes,
he will open the eyes of the blind,
and unstop the ears of the deaf.
The lame man will leap up like a deer,
and those who could not speak
will shout and sing!
 
Springs will burst forth in the wilderness,
and streams in the desert.
The parched ground will become a pool,
with springs of water in the thirsty land.
Where desert jackals lived,
there will be reeds and rushes!
 
And a main road will go through that once-deserted land;
it will be named, "The Holy Highway".
No evil-hearted men may walk upon it.
God will walk there with you;
even the most stupid cannot miss the way.
 
No lion will lurk along its course,
nor will there be any other dangers;
only the redeemed will travel there.
These,the ransomed of the Lord,
will go home along the road to Zion,
singing the songs of everlasting joy.
 
For them all sorrow
and all sighing will be gone forever;
only joy and gladness will be there.
 
~ Isaiah 35 (LB)
 
**
Printable Issue 2250  Today is Friday, February 3rd, 2012; Karen's Korner #2250
A couple of sayings from Mother Teresa:
 
"What we do is less than a drop in the ocean.
But if that drop were missing,
the ocean would lack something."
 
**
 
"Never let anything so fill you with pain
or sorrow
so as to make you forget
the joy of Christ Risen."
 
**
 
"When you are cooking, washing clothes,
working hard in the office,
do it all with joy.
That will be your love for God in action!"
 
**
 
"Jesus wants to live his life in you,
to look through your eyes,
walk with your feet,
love with your heart."
 
****
 
Printable Issue 2251  Today is Monday, February 6th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2251
As a Karen's Korner reader, you know that our church has embarked on a 31-week study of "THE STORY" by Max Lucado and Randy Frazee. This past week we looked at Chapter #18; it was taking a long look at Daniel.
 
We don't have to be in Sunday School very long before we learn about Daniel in the Lions Den. Or about his three friends:  Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego getting tossed into a fiery furnace. Both instances found the four standing up for their faith, not following the commands of the kings under which they were living in a foreign land.
 
The discussion paragraphs addressed Daniel living successfully as an ALIEN (notice the first letters of each sentence!):
 
Association. Daniel developed a close community of like-minded faithful friends.These four resisted the lure of unlawful luxuries. Together they refused to bow down to the golden idol. Together they faced the fiery furnace. Their friendship served to strengthen their faith and their resolve in the face of temptation and persecution.
 
Live Peaceably.  Daniel and his friends chose to live peaceably in Babylon. Even when the decree was issued that forbade Daniel to pray to His God, he peaceably went to his room to pray as usual. He lived peaceably under various kings and even kingdoms.
 
Identity. The names most familiar to us, were changed by their captors. The Babylonians  could impose outward changes, but they could not change the identity of these young men. They held fast to God and grounded their identity in Him.
 
Engage. While Daniel and the others could have refused to participate in the social and political life in Babylon, they did not. Instead, they fully engaged in life where they were exiled. They became leaders in a foreign land!
 
Non-negotiables. Daniel chose his friends wisely. He lived peaceably in a foreign land. He maintained his identity as a man of God, all the while recognizing and respecting the governmental authorities placed over him. But he also knew what was not negotiable. He and his friends refused to bow to the king. They faced the fiery furnace and the lions' den -- both could have resulted in death! They would not break God's Law by bowing down. They knew the LORD could rescue them from the flames and lions, but the did not have a guarantee that He would. They stood firm anyway.
 
**
 
 The New Testament tells us that we are also 'foreigners'. Paul wrote (Philippians 3:20): "our citizenship is in heaven....." Yes, we too are aliens. Therefore, we can model our lives after the ALIEN Daniel.
 
Association.  We were never meant to go it alone.God created us to live in community with one another and the Church is the Body of Christ. Believers are called to love one another; to live in harmony; to demonstrate to the world that we are Jesus' disciples. We are to serve one another, be kind to one another; and be subject to one another. As Christians, we want to encourage one another and build one another up.
 
Live Peaceably.  Christians are called to be subject to our governmental authorities and to be peaceable and considerate of all mankind (Titus 3:1-2). Though we are aliens in this world, we are in this world and should represent Christ to an unbelieving world. Our homes should be marked with peace. We should strive to have peace in our marriages, with our children, and with our extended family.
 
Identity.  Like Daniel, our identity is in Christ Jesus. We reside in a 'foreign land' but identity should remain tethered to Christ. Believers are all sons of God by faith in Christ (Galatians 3:26). We resist becoming conformed to the world by the ongoing renewal of our minds as we live a life sacrificed to the Lord (Romans 12:1-2).
 
Engage.  Engage wherever you are! Engage in the social, political, and daily life of the community in which God places you. We are scattered throughout the neighborhood, city, and world. Some Christians are in prisons while others are in positions of great power and privilege. Prosper there. Practice good citizenship. Participate in the political process that shapes our city, state, nation. Some Christians withdraw from the world to protect themselves from defilement. Jesus did not live that way; He engaged in the community. Adaptation is not synonymous with conformity. We can become leaders in our communities and workplaces. We can change a business, school, neighborhood, nation by being engaged 'foreigners' with a character that is trustworthy, not corrupt, diligent like Daniel.
 
Non-negotiables.  We have to know where we stand in our faith; what is not negotiable? What is worth sacrificing for? Maybe even dying for?
 
***
 
Printable Issue 2252  Today is Tuesday, February 7th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2252
Yesterday Clarion native, now resident of Mason City, Bev Downs invited several of us from Clarion to attend a monthly noon luncheon of their Christian Women's Club.
 
The guest speaker for the day was Jean Hofmann of Battle Creek, Iowa.  She, her husband and family are sheep farmers there; he specializes in sheep shearing. So much so that he was one of two representing the United States in a world sheep shearing contest in England a few years ago.
 
As part of her story, Jean told of their real life experience of going to the barn to tend the sheep at lambing time. She said that particular night they found a mother and a new lamb. But they also found an orphaned lamb. "I started to make plans about having to bottle feed the new motherless lamb," she told the audience.
 
They also discovered a new ewe that had delivered a dead one. Since mother ewe's will only tend their 'own', it didn't help the couple's dilemma.
 
Then her husband told her of a new idea he had read about and he set about to test it out. He took the dead lamb away from its mother. Skinned it. Covered the orphan lamb with the skin. Placed the 'dressed up'  lamb into the pen with the potential adoptive mother.
 
It worked! The ewe sensed 'her lamb' and claimed the newborn as her own!
 
Hofmann told the audience, "It made me stop and think about my coming before God at His Throne when I enter heaven. I won't be accepted by my pedigree. I will be accepted by my Heavenly Father because I am covered by Jesus' blood (His Heavenly Skin and Scent)."
 
God can't accept just any 'orphaned lambs'; He only takes the one that are His Own!
 
Hofmann invited any of us who were guests yesterday, "Have you accepted His gift of the Lamb's covering? So that we are acceptable as one of His Own?"
 
We each had and have a choice to make.
 
Dear Father in Heaven, thank You for the covering of Your love and care. Thank You that the blood shed by Your Son makes us Your Sons and Daughters. We accept His Gift of Love and Eternal Life. In His Name we pray together.  Amen.
Printable Issue 2253  Today is Wednesday, February 8th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2253
As we get older and get together with friends, we find more and more of us with aches, pains, and surgeries to repair something that needs attention. Something to get us back to 'as good as new'.
 
Here are a couple of Bible verses which should give us new light and hope:
 
"And just as they were telling about it (Jesus being alive!),
Jesus himself was suddenly standing there among them,
and greeted them,
Jesus himself was suddenly there among them,
and greeted them.
But the whole group was terribly frightened,
thinking they were seeing a giant!"
~Luke 24:36,37 LB
 
Bible Commentary:  Jesus' body wasn't just a vision or a ghost--the disciples touched him and he ate food. On the other hand, his body wasn't just a restored human body like Lazarus - He was able to appear and disappear. Jesus' resurrected body was even more real than before. It was now immortal. This is the kind of body we will be given at the resurrection of the dead (read I Corinthians 15:42-50).
 
 
(A note from yesterday's Karen's Korner about the covering of a lamb so an adoptive mother will accept him:  Our friends in Montana who are cattle ranchers sent this email:  "we do the same thing with calves and it works like a charm!")
Printable Issue 2254  Today is Thursday, February 9th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2254
Anyone who is a Max Lucado daily devotional subscriber the last week plus have focused on enjoying each day. Good advice!
 
Here are a couple:
 

You Have Today

Oh, satisfy us early with Your mercy, That we may rejoice and be glad all our days!  ~ Psalm 90:14

 

You can’t spend tomorrow’s money, celebrate tomorrow’s achievements—or resolve tomorrow’s riddles.

You have today!

Paul rejoiced in prison.  David wrote Psalms in the wilderness. 

Paul and Silas sang in jail.  And Jesus prayed in the garden of pain.

Suppose—you choose not to work or worry your day away, but decide to give it a fair shake. 

You trust more.  Stress less.

Amplify gratitude.  Mute the grumbling. 

And what do you know?  Before long the day is done and—surprisingly decent. 

It’s what I call a day changer!  So you resolve to do the same the next day and the next. 

Days become weeks.  Weeks become months.  Months become years of good days. 

It’s the way good lives are built.  One good day at a time!

“This is the day the Lord has made!  Rejoice and be glad in it!”

Have a great day—every day!

 

***

 

Yesterday’s Gone

In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name.   ~ Psalm 33:21

 

You no longer have yesterday.  It slipped away as you slept. 

Sorry, what’s gone is gone.  The second hand of the clock refuses to tick backward.  You no longer have yesterday.

This is the day the Lord has made!  Live in it.  You must be present to win!

This is the day the Lord has made.  We will rejoice and be glad in it!  Let the words sink in.  God made this day, ordained this hour, designed the details of this wrenching moment.

Each day emerges from God’s drawing room.  Including this one!

Eighty-four thousand heartbeats.  One thousand, four hundred and forty minutes.  A complete rotation of the earth.  A gift of twenty-four unlived, unexplored hours.

Here’s a day changer for you… If you can stack one good day on another and another, you’ll link together a good life!

Choose to make it a great day—every day!

 

*****

Printable Issue 2255  Today is Friday, February 10th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2255
Something fun to cap off the week; sent to us yesterday by our Montana friend Judy Gallehon (in part).
 
They are 'paraprosdokians':   figures of speech in which the latter part of the sentence/phrase is surprising, unexpected, and frequently humorous. The email said they were loved to Winston Churchill: 
 
 
We never really grow up; we only learn how to act in public.

They begin the evening news with 'Good Evening,' then proceed to tell you why it isn't.

To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism. To steal from many is research.

I thought I wanted a career. Turns out I just wanted paychecks.

In filling out an application, where it says, 'In case of emergency, notify:' I put 'DOCTOR.'
 
I didn't say it was your fault; I said I was blaming you.

Behind every successful man is his woman. Behind the fall of a successful man is usually another woman.

You do not need a parachute to skydive. You only need a parachute to skydive twice.

To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target.

Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.

Where there's a will, there are relatives.
 
**
Printable Issue 2256  Today is Monday, February 13th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2256
Do you ever become impressed with what God can do? When you really stop to think about it?
 
 
We can work for lifetmes to build our homes and our communities. And in a handful of minutes, God can reduce it to rubble with likes of a tornado or tsunami!
 
Just ask the people of Joplin; New Orleans; or some of our Japanese friends.
 
Then it takes us another lifetime to unscramble the destruction.
 
 
The weather report in some part of the world can describe drought that has taken a number of months or years due to no rain.
 
Sometimes a several-hour gully-washer storm can fill up puddles, pockets, water tables, and reservoirs with the life-giving substance.
 
 
God can take a couple of microscopic specks. And, in give or take, nine months, turn it into a fully-functioning baby, who is equipped with all the 'right stuff' to be a life-enhancing, human being for the next 80 or 90 years.
 
What a miracle!
 
 
And there are some stories like that under every rock! What an awesome God we worship and serve! How awesome He is! And the more I study His Book, I'd rather be on His Side than any other place I can think!!
 
All He does is invite us to be included next to Him; we can choose the invitation or reject it!!
 
 
"Hallelujah! Yes, praise the Lord!
How good it is to sing His praises!
How delightful, and how right!
 
He heals the broken-hearted, binding up their wounds.
He counts the stars and calls them all by name.
How great He is!
His power is absolute!
His understanding is unlimited.
The Lord supports the humble, but brings the wicked into the dust.
 
Sing out your thanks to Him;
sing praises to our God.
He covers the heavens with clouds,
sends down the showers
and makes the green grass grow in mountain pastures.
He feeds the wild animals and the young ravens cry to Him for food.
 
But His joy is in those who reverence Him,
those who expect Him to be loving and kind.
 
Praise Him; praise your God!
For He has fortified your gates against all enemies,
and bless your children.
He sends peace across your nation,
and fills your barns with plenty of the finest wheat.
He sends His orders to the world.
How swiftly His word flies.
 
He sends the snow in all its lovely whiteness,
and scatters the frost upon the ground,
and hurls the hail upon the earth.
Who can stand before His freezing cold?
 
But then He calls for warmer weather,
and the spring winds blow and all the river ice is broken.
He has made known His laws and ceremonies of worship to Israel--
something He has not done with any other nation;
they have not known his commands.
 
Hallelujah!
Yes, praise the Lord!
 
~Psalm 147 (in part) LB
 
***
Printable Issue 2257  Today is Tuesday, February 14th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2257
Happy Valentine's Day!
 
Taken from Anne Graham Lotz' (Billy Graham's daughter) winter newsletter:
 
"The angel said to them, 'Do not be afraid.
I bring you good news of great joy
that will be for all people.'"
~ Luke 2:10
 
Christmas is over. The shopping, baking, decorating, and wrapping are just memories now. But the message of the angels is timeless. It's one that is desperately needed in our world, not just on December 25th, but every day of this New Year. It's a message of Hope for the world.
 
If ever there was a time to offer Hope to all people, it is now. The population has exploded, unemployment is high, bankruptcies are common, suicides are rampant, politicians lack leadership, leaders lack courage. Christians are unrighteous, and the masses are unrepentant. The list goes on. What is the world coming to? What hope is there for the future of my grandchildren, not just economically and politically, but morally? The land that we love is changing so drastically that future generations will not know the freedoms that we have enjoyed for so long.
 
The Hope that God offers is underscored in Luke's Gospel, at the Transfiguration scene in chapter 9. It's striking that Moses and Elijah, two of the greatest of the Old Testament believers who had been dead for hundreds of years, appeared with Jesus, wrapped in splendor. They were alive! They were talking to Jesus about the Cross and the Resurrection! How could that be??
 
The obvious conclusion is that this life is not all there is. There is Hope for tomorrow. Death is not final. The bad guys do not win. The good guys do. And the focus of history is on Jesus, the Son of God, the Hope of the ages.
 
Elijah, a powerful prophet, was greatly persecuted during his lifetime. He had to hid from death threats and run from his tormentors. He called down the fire, slaughtered the priests of Baal, prayed down the rain, then ran from one wicked woman. He spiraled down into suicidal depression before he was recalled into God's service. Yet there he was, sharing in the glory of the Son of God on the Mount of Transfiguration!
 
And Moses! A man raised in the palaces of Egypt...a man who had such an explosive temper that he murdered an Egyptian official who was oppressing a slave.....a man exiled in disgrace.....a man who was ridiculed and mocked....a man who wandered in circles with God's children, going basically nowhere, because the former slaves stubbornly refused to follow God by faith into the Promised Land. So Moses, a man raised in the palaces of Egypt, lived out his life in the dust and heat of the wilderness, caring for people who, for the most part, were obstinate and ungrateful. Subsequently, Moses pleaded with God to reveal His glory. But God only allowed him to see the 'backside'. And Moses was not allowed to enter the Promised Land. Yet hundreds of years later, he was wrapped in glory as he spoke of God in Christ fact to face!
 
So.......be encouraged!
        If your New Year has gotten off to a rocky start.
        If some of the problems from 2011 have resurfaced in 2012.
        If the resolutions you made on January 1st have already been broken.
        If your response is divorcing you,
                your children disobeying you,
                        your friends rejecting you,
                                your boss humiliating you,
                                        your church wounding you,
                                                your life itself disappointing you........
 
There is Hope! Do not be afraid! I bring you tidings of great joy! One day soon, Jesus will come back to receive you to Himself, so that where He is, you may be also. He will wipe away your tears, clothe you in a body like His, and enfold you in His arms! You will be wrapped in His glory, face to face with the One whose Word says if you suffer with Him you will share in His glory.....the One who reigns as King of kings and Lord of Lords. Forever!!
 
***
Printable Issue 2258  Today is Wednesday, February 15th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2258
Karen's Korner readers are aware of our church's 31-week Bible Study which we embarked on early last fall. This coming week, we will be looking at week #20. One more week after this one and we will finish the Old Testament.
 
Why do we have 21 weeks of Old Testament and only 10 of New Testament? Part of the reason is the Old Testament is a larger portion of the Bible!
 
Don't we know more about the New Testament than the Old??
 
With these thoughts in mind, Mariel Betts clipped a column out of her hometown newspaper a couple of weeks ago and I share it with you today:
 
"Do not think that I came to abolish the Law
or the Prophets;
I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill it.
For truly I say to you,
until heaven and earth pass away,
not the smallest letter or stroke
shall pass away from the Law,
until all is accomplished."
~ Matthew 5:17,18
 
Dear Friends,
 
    Of what good is the Old Testament? Does it have relevance to our lives today? If so, in what way? The religious leaders of Jesus' day thought He was violating the scriptures with His radical teaching and unorthodox behavior. Today some people make the opposite mistake. By supposedly "Believing in Jesus," they reduce the Old Testament to a collection of sentimental stories and moral lessons on the level of Aesop's Fables.
 
    In verse 17, Jesus makes it clear that it is wrong thinking to view the Old Testament as having been abolished by Him. Rather, they point to Him! He came to the earth to bring the Old Testament Scriptures to fruition. As the apple is to the bud and blossom, and the completed house is to the blueprint, so Jesus -- in His person, teachings, and actions -- is to the law and prophets!
 
    Well, then, if we have Jesus, we don't need them anymore, right? Wrong. See verse 18. The Old Testament Law is more sure, and secure than anything in the heavens or on the earth. Not one stroke shall pass away from it until Jesus fulfills it completely, and all it reveals about God's redemptive plan is accomplished.
 
    Listen, The Old Testament Scriptures, properly understood in relation to Jesus -- to whom it points and in whom it is fulfilled -- will remain essentially important for as long as human history continues. Paul wrote to Timothy, "All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work." (2 Timothy 3:16,17)
 
    How does your attitude toward the Old Testament measure up to Jesus? Do you read it? Do you desire and strive to understand it: Do you love it? (Psalm 119:97)!
 
    As this New Year dawns, I challenge you to spend time in the Old Testament. Watch for what it teaches about God, man, sin, redemption. Look for Jesus in it. Make it part of a regular diet of God's Word. Grow from it. Enjoy it! You will be blessed.
 
In Christ's Love,
Pastor Tim Sir
Saratoga Presbyterian Church
Printable Issue 2259  Today is Thursday, February 16th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2259
Something from Joel and Victoria Osteen:
 

Expect God to Act

"[A Psalm] of David. Vindicate me, O Lord, for I have walked in my integrity; I have [expectantly] trusted in, leaned on, and relied on the Lord without wavering and I shall not slide."
(Psalm 26:1

"Did you know that God loves to hear you call upon His name? He has ways to meet your needs that you´ve never imagined, and He´s just waiting for you to ask expectantly. Are you expecting God to act on your behalf today?

"So many people pray with an attitude as if they are trying to hit a dartboard blindfolded! They know the target is there, they have an idea of the general direction; they just hope they´ll just get somewhere close. But understand, when you get into God´s Word and declare His promises over your life, it´s like taking the blindfold off and walking straight up to the bull´s eye! When you pray with expectancy according to God´s Word, you´ll hit the target every single time.

"What are your needs today? Find the promise in God´s Word that addresses those needs. Then, expect God to act! He is faithful to His Word, and He´s just waiting to show Himself strong on your behalf."

"Heavenly Father, today I come to You with an attitude of faith and expectancy. I know that You have good plans for me, and I choose to come into agreement with Your Word. Thank You for hearing my prayers as I wait patiently for You. In Jesus´ Name. Amen."

***

Printable Issue 2260  Today is Friday, February 17th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2260
A couple of things which might make you smile today:
 
 
One of the last times our granddaughter Molly was at our home. she spent a little time studying a map which we have stuck to our dishwasher with magnets. The map shows the Middle East and is divided with one side showing 'Then' at the time of Christ; the other side is marked 'Now'. Map studiers can see Mesopotamia, Babylonia, Canaan, and others on the B.C side, and the likes of Iraq, Syria, and Saudi Arabia on the Today side.
 
Kindergartner Molly, who is Iowa born and bred, said after her studies, "Grandma, I have looked and looked and I can't find Des Moines."
 
**
 
From a ' pass along'  which I received this past week; this is one from the items:
 
 
"When my daughter, Kelli, said her bedtime prayers, she would bless every family member, every friend, and every animal (current and past). For several weeks, after we finished the nightly prayer, Kelli would say, 'And all girls'. This soon became part of her nightly routine to include this closing.
 
"My curiosity got the best of me, and I asked her, 'Kelli, why do you always add the part about all girls?'
 
"Her response, 'Because everybody always finish their prayers by saying, 'All Men'!"
 
***
 
Printable Issue 2261  Today is Monday, February 20th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2261
"For when the Holy Spirit has come upon you,
you will receive power to testify about Me
with great effect."
~ Acts 1:8 LB
 
~
 
Bible Commentary:
Jesus promised the apostles
that they would receive power to witness
after they received the Holy Spirit.
Notice the progression:
1) they received the Holy Spirit;
2) He gave them power, and
3) they witnessed with extraordinary results.
We often try to reverse the order
and witness by our own power and authority.
Witnessing is not showing what we can do for God,
but showing and telling what God has done for us.
 
***
 
Printable Issue 2262  Today is Tuesday, February 21st, 2012; Karen's Korner #2262
Sunday morning at church, a family came in together. Mom, dad, third-grade daughter, one-year-old son, and new baby - five days old. Accompanying the five were grandma and grandpa. The seven didn't quite fit into one pew, so grandma and grandpa sat ahead in a second pew.
 
Daughter Jaidyn was holding the nearly-year-old, Jayce. He probably has no idea that his world has now been invaded by the newborn Sage. Jayce spent some time interacting with his big sister.
 
Then he began to notice and focus on Grandma Arlene sitting in front of him. He's only one but Jayce knows his grandma!! He started to pat his little fists on her back. Maybe grandma would notice him.
 
Notice she did. Turned and smiled at Jayce. Put out her hands. Jayce was lifted over the pew and into grandma's loving arms.
 
Do we ever do that to God?? Do we know Him so well that we do whatever we can to get His attention? Do plead for His affection? Like Jayce, we may not have done so much to deserve His love and care. But like Grandma Arlene, He gives it to us because we are His Children and He loves us.
 
So just for today - tap on God's shoulder, get His attention, allow Him to lift you into His loving arms, and enjoy sitting on His lap and let His loving arms envelop you.....even if it just for a short period of time!!
 
**
Taken from "Precious in His Sight"
A photography book of child from around the world
by David Dobson:
 
 
He who can reach a child's heart
can reach the world's heart.
~ Rudyard Kipling
 
~
 
Before I formed you in the womb
I knew you...
~ Jeremiah 1:5
 
***
Printable Issue 2263  Today is Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012; Karen's Korner #2263
A couple of recent 'Max Lucado' thoughts about fear. The Bible has lots to say about fear; seems God knew that people as they walked through life would be 'afraid' of lots of things. Our job is to 'fear not' and 'trust Him':
 

A Spirit of Fear

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. ~2 Timothy 1:7

Fear!  It sucks the life out of the soul!  And when fear shapes our lives, safety becomes our god.  We worship the risk-free life!

The fear-filled cannot love deeply.  Love is just too risky.  No wonder Jesus wages such a war against fear.

Don’t be afraid.  Take courage.

Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul.

Don’t let your hearts be troubled.  Trust in God, and trust also in me.

Jesus steps into the storm and asks, “Why are you fearful, O you of little faith?”

Fear may fill the world, but it doesn’t have to fill your heart!  Hysteria is not from God.  And Jesus doesn’t want you to live there!  The promise of Christ is ... God has not given you a spirit of fear!

 

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Fear Leads to Sin

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts our fear, because fear involves torment.  But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.    ~  1 John 4:18

Fear, when it is mismanaged, leads to sin.  And sin leads to hiding.  And since we’ve all sinned, we all hide—in 80-hour workweeks, temper tantrums, and religious busyness.  We avoid contact with God!

We’re convinced God must hate our evil tendencies.  We despise our lustful thoughts, harsh judgments, and selfish deeds.  If our sin nauseates us, how much more must it revolt a holy God?

So we draw a practical conclusion:  God is ticked off at us! 

Sin has left us lost and confused.  Yes, we have disappointed God.  But no, God has not abandoned us!

Jesus loves us too much to leave us in doubt about His grace.  God keeps no list of our wrongs.  His love casts out fear because He casts out our sin!

Live forgiven!

 

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Printable Issue 2264  Today is Thursday, February 23rd, 2012; Karen's Korner #2264
Ever wonder what is going on in the world? Disasters? People and governments some place in the world making a law or rule you can hardly believe? Some injustice from some people against another person/group of people? And there are many, many others!
 
I heard a speaker on Christian radio yesterday say,
 
"The darker the night;
the brighter the Light of His Life and Love will shine!"
 
~
"The grass withers,
the flowers fade,
but the Word of our God
shall stand forever."
~ Isaiah 40:8 LB
 
*
Bible Commentary: 
People are compared here to grass
and flowers that fade away.
Our lives are mortal,
but God's Word is eternal and unfailing.
Public opinion changes and is unreliable,
but God's Word is constant.
Only in God's eternal Word will we find lasting solutions
to our problems and needs.
 
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Printable Issue 2265  Today is Friday, February 24th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2265
"Bless the Lord who is my Immovable Rock.
He gives me strength and skill in battle.
He is always kind and loving to me;
he is my fortress,
my tower of strength and safety,
my deliverer.
He stands before me as a shield.
He subdues my people under me.
 
"O Lord, what is man that you even notice him?
Why bother at all with the human race?
For man is but a breath;
his days are like a passing shadow.
 
"Bend down the heavens, Lord, and come.
The mountains smoke beneath your touch.
 
"Let loose your lightning bolts, your arrows,
Lord,upon your enemies,
and scatter them.
 
"Reach down from heaven and rescue me;
deliver me from deep waters,
from the power of my enemies.
Their mouths are filled with lies;
they swear to the truth of what is false.
 
"I will sing you a new song,
O God,
with a ten-stringed harp.
For you grant victory to kings!
You are the one who will rescue your servant David
from the fatal sword.
Save me!
Deliver me from these enemies, these liars, these treacherous men."
~ Psalm 144:1-8 LB
 
**
Printable Issue 2266  Today is Sunday, February 26th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2266
A 'want ad' written by a budding 'area writer':  Just M.E.:
 
 
Looking for work?
 
"Become fishers of men" - Mark 1:17
 
 
Centuries old business has many available positions.
Work at your own pace,
work from home.
No special skills or tools necessary.
 
On the job training.
A NO discrimination policy,
everyone employable.
 
Any and all tools needed (hugs, smiles, love compassion, etc.)
are employer entrusted to every employee, FREE!
Excellent pay and unending benefits package.
 
You can start immediately.
 
For information, contact nearest clergyman.
Or go straight to the One in charge
Our LORD, God.
 
~ Just M.E.
 
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