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May 2012 Archives

Printable Issue 2307  Today is Tuesday, May 1st, 2012; Karen's Korner #2307
Once again from an area budding writer, who chooses to remain anonymous:
 
"Thank You Lord for loving me.
For waking me up to the reality of the evils
I lived amidst.
Thank You for my life with You.
Thank You for blessing my life
and turning it into a life worthy living."
 
**
 
"Lord, please give me
what I need to turn my back
on the world,
and not to You."
 
**
 
"Help me to apply my brakes,
not to Your Love for me.
But to this living of a worldly life."
 
**
 
~ Just M.E.
 
Printable Issue 2308  Today is Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012; Karen's Korner #2308
"O Jacob, O Israel,
how can you say that the Lord
doesn't see your troubles and isn't being fair?
Don't you yet understand?
Don't you know by now that the everlasting God,
the Creator of the farthest parts of the earth,
never grows faint or weary?
No one can fathom the depths of his understanding.
 
He gives power to the tired and worn out,
and strength to the weak.
Even the youths shall be exhausted,
and the young men will all give up.
But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength.
They shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint.
~ Isaiah 40:27 - 31 LB
*
Bible Commentary:
"Even the strongest people get tired at times,
but God's power and strength never diminish.
He is never too tired or too busy to help and listen.
His strength is our source of strength.
When you feel all of life crushing you
and you cannot go another step,
remember that you can call upon God to renew your strength.
 
***
Printable Issue 2309  Today is Thursday, May 3rd, 2012; Karen's Korner #2309
It's my birthday today; and we plan to celebrate! First of all, I am celebrating being still 65 (I was born shortly after 8 a.m. and it isn't 8 a.m. just yet!). And I decided to take the 'day off', so I am letting Max (Lucado) share a couple of thoughts with Karen's Korners readers (like I do now and then!).
 
Also today's is National Day of Prayer. If you know of some church or community prayer time today, might be a good one to join them....if you have the opportunity!
 
From Max:
 

Just for You

"The whole earth is filled with awe at your wonders; where morning dawns, where evening fades, you call forth songs of joy."
~ Psalm 65:7-9

"I’m about to tell you something that may stretch your imagination!  You don’t have to agree. You don’t have to buy it.  Just think about it!

If you were the only person on earth, the earth would look exactly the same. The Himalayas would still have their drama and the Caribbean would still have its charm. The sun would still nestle behind the Rockies in the evenings, and spray light on the desert in the mornings.

If you were the sole pilgrim on this globe, God would not diminish its beauty one degree.  He’s waiting for you to stumble into the den, rub the sleep from your eyes, and see the bright red bike he assembled just for you!

He’s waiting for your eyes to pop and your heart to stop!  In the silence he leans forward and whispers… 'I did it just for you!'”

 

**

A Smiling God

“Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, “The LORD has done great things for them."

~ Psalm 126:2

"I’m not one who easily envisions a smiling God.  A weeping God, yes.  An angry God, okay.  A mighty God, you bet!  But a chuckling God?  It seems too—too unlike what God should do.  Which just shows how much I know—or don’t know—about God!

What do I think he was doing when he stretched the neck of the giraffe?  What about the eight legs of the octopus?  And what do I envision on his face when he saw Adam’s first glance at Eve? A yawn?  Hardly.

Is that him smiling as Jonah lands on the beach?  Is that a twinkle in his eye as the disciples feed thousands with one boy’s lunch?  Can you honestly imagine Jesus bouncing children on his knee with a somber face?

No, I think Jesus smiled.  I think he smiled a bit at people and a lot with people!"

 

***

Printable Issue 2310  Today is Friday, May 4th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2310
We received this forwarded email devotional yesterday from childhood school friend Cindy Schubert. She liked it and so do I.
 
It makes me think of a broadcast I heard this week when I was driving to and from town. I enjoy listening to our local Christian radio station as I travel, but rarely can recall to which program I was listening.
 
The illustration this particular broadcast was telling about was a recent conference he was attending. The speaker had sticky notes which he was putting on everything as he was walking around. The note had only one word:  "temporary". Temporary was everywhere!
 
We are becoming more and more aware after devastating tornadoes, tsunamis, or hurricanes, that many things which may have stood the test of time, can be destroyed in almost an instant:  temporary.
 
But the same speaker had another colored note, containing another word:  "permanent", which he stuck on conference goers who chose the note. "Had they accepted Jesus' offer of eternal life?"  "Do they allow His blood, shed on the cross generations ago, to cover their sins?"
 
If so, their (our) lives are PERMANENT!
 
 Reflection

"Did you hear that the richest man in town has died?"

"How much did he leave behind?"

"Everything."

Have you visited some of our historic and beautiful cemeteries in Chicago--Graceland, Rosehill, Oak Woods? 
Although you notice an occasional familiar name in Chicago history--McCormick, Pullman, Field--most of the names are not recognizable. Impressive
monuments, but forgotten names, forgotten lives.

Death equalizes all of humanity, rich and poor, the famous and the unknown. As Psalm 49 puts it, "Don't be overly impressed when someone becomes rich . . .because when they die, they won't take any of it with them." Jesus frequently takes up the theme,
pointing out that "one's life does not consist in the abundance of possessions."  He tells the tragic story of a man who labored to store up riches and to whom God says, "You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things that you have prepared, whose will they be?"

Last month's commemoration of the Titanic disaster reminds us, as it did the public 100 years ago, that all strata of society, the powerful and lowly, together face the unpredictability of life and the inevitability of death.

And the question is left for each of us to answer: How then should we live?

Prayer:

Lord of all life, help me to live this day in gratitude, and teach me to distinguish
wisely between enough and more.
Amen.

~ Written by Thomas C. Rook
 
***
Printable Issue 2311  Today is Monday, May 7th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2311
We bought a couple of small books for a special little gal as birthday gifts:  "Little Prayers" & :"Little Psalms" each have about a dozen items, taken from The Bible. If they are good for kids, they are pretty good for us as adults as well; illustrations are wonderful.
 
Here are a couple from each book:
 
God's Love
Give thanks to God because God is good,
because God's love lasts forever.
from Psalm 118:1
 
*
Trusting God
God is my light and my salvation;
I will fear no one.
 
God protects me from all danger;
I will never be afraid.
from Psalm 27:1
 
**
Right and Wrong
Dear God,
Please make me wise;
help me to know what is right and what is wrong.
Solomon's prayer
from I Kings 3:9
*
 
Loving Others
Dear God,
help me to do for others what I want them to do for me.
 
Dear God,
help me to forgive others
just as I want them to forgive me.
 
Dear God,
help me to follow Jesus,
and may I learn to love others as he did.
Praying as Jesus taught
from Matthew 7:12; Matthew 6:14; John 13:34
 
***
Printable Issue 2312  Today is Tuesday, May 8th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2312
Psalms Chapter 46
The known hymn "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God"
is based on these verses:
 

Psalm 46 NIV

"God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.

Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way

and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,

though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,

the place where the Most High dwells.

God is within her, she will not fall;

God will help her at the break of day.

Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall;

he lifts his voice, the earth melts.

The Lord Almighty is with us,

the God of Jacob is our fortress.

Come and see what the Lord has done,

the desolation he has brought on the earth.

He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth.

He breaks the bow and shatters the spear;

he burns the shields with fire.

He says, "Be still, and know that I am God,

I will be exalted among the nations,

I will be exalted in the earth."

The Lord Almighty is with us;

The Lord Almighty is with us: the God of Jacob is our fortress."

***

 

Printable Issue 2313  Today is Wednesday, May 9th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2313
A weekly installment of two Max Lucado's thoughts and writings:
 

Known to Wander

For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people.   ~ Titus 2:11

If the prophet Isaiah who said, “All we like sheep have gone astray” had known my dog, he might have written, “All we like Molly have gone astray!”

You don’t want to know how many times this minister has chased his dog down the street, tossing un-minister-like warnings!  She’s definitely known to wander!

Last week we thought it was for good.  I went to the animal shelter.  I didn’t find her there.  But I had the urge to fill my car with barking, tail-wagging dogs.  As much as I wanted to save the dogs, I wanted to stay married even more!

But the urge helps me understand why Jesus made forgiveness his big announcement.  Paul told Titus, “Salvation’s available for everyone!  Tell them!”

By the way, Molly turned up in a neighbor’s backyard.  Turns out she wasn’t as far from home as we feared. 

Neither are you!

 

***

Where’s the Path?

Surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.  Matthew 28:19-20

There’s a story of a man on an African safari deep in the jungle.  The guide assigned to him had a machete and was whacking away the tall weeds and thick underbrush. 

The traveler, tired and hot, and a bit frustrated said, “Where are we?  Do you know where you’re taking me?  Where’s the path?”

The seasoned guide stopped—looked back at the man and said, “I am the path!”

We ask the same questions, don’t we?  We ask God, “Where are you taking me?  Where’s the path?” 

And he, like the guide, doesn’t tell us.  Oh he may give us a hint or two, but that’s all.

If he did, would we understand?  Would we comprehend?  No, like the traveler, we’re unacquainted with this jungle. 

Jesus gives us a far greater gift.  He says, “I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” 

He gives us himself!

 

***

Printable Issue 2314  Today is Thursday, May 10th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2314
As Karen's Korner readers are more than a little aware of the national attention our local group, Marys & Marthas (M & Ms for short) received the end of April, being recognized and receiving $10,000 for our community's group effort of making a difference, last fall. It was two weeks ago today that our group handed out or mailed checks and gift certificates to nearly one hundred groups and individuals, who helped as, together we did numerous volunteer tasks. It has been fun.
 
Now nearly every day, my mailbox is brimming with thank you notes. Yesterday was a day that I received four:  two from groups who received dollars, telling us what they did with the funds and two were individuals who were surprised to be given gift certificates. Like a junky, I am beginning to enjoy receiving them. Other M & Ms are undoubtedly receiving some written and verbal thanks as well.
 
Our gifts were from a few dollars for personal gift certificates to several hundred for clubs and organizations.
 
As I walked back from the mailbox yesterday, I reflected on how much I was appreciation the notes of thanksgiving. Then I that about how much more God does and has done for me and all of His Children, daily. As Our Heavenly Father, I am sure He enjoys our 'notes' of thanks, as much or more as I am enjoying notes of thanks for those having received our 'one time gifts'.
 
Heavenly Father, thank You for so many gifts that I can't even list them all! Thank You for every breath that I take, for the sunshine and the rain, for every daily provision. Thank You for family, friends, food, and more resources than I deserve. Thank You for caring for every detail of my life: not only yesterday and today, but for forever. Forgive when I forget to say 'thank you'. Help me to send little notes of thanks to You throughout my day today. In Your Son Jesus' Name. Amen.
Printable Issue 2315  Today is Friday, May 11th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2315
Happy Mothers' Day on Sunday! 
Taken from a little table book titled "Little Whispers of Blessing for Moms"
(installment #1; #2 will be Monday's Karen's Korner):
 
 
"No joy in nature is so sublimely
affecting as the joy of a mother at the good fortune
of her child."
~ Jean Paul Richter
 
~
 
""Never despair of a child.
The one you weep the most for at the mercy seat
may fill your heart with sweetest joys."
~ T. L. Cuyler
 
~
 
"The three most beautiful sights:
a potato garden in bloom,
a ship in sail,
a woman after the birth of her child."
~ Irish Proverb
 
~
 
"A mother's love is like a circle.
It has no beginning and no ending.
It keeps on going around and around,
ever expanding, touching everyone who comes
it contact with it."
~ UNKNOWN
 
~
 
"The time to be happy is now;
the place to be happy is here."
~ Robert G. Ingersoll
 
~
 
"No man is poor
who has had a godly mother."
~ Abraham Lincoln
 
~
 
"It's not how much we have,
but how much we enjoy,
that makes happiness."
~ Charles Spurgeon
 
***
Printable Issue 2316  Today is Monday, May 14th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2316
 
Happy Mothers' Day to all mom's yesterday!
 
Taken from a little table book titled
"Little Whispers of Blessing for Moms"
(installment #2 of two):
 
 
"A mother is the one through whom
God whispers love to His little children."
~ UNKNOWN
 
~
 
"Children need love,
especially when they do not deserve it.
~ Harold S. Hulbert
 
~
 
"Dear Lord, thank You for my home.
I ask that You fill it with Your Holy Spirit.
Even when I don't have time to polish and dust,
may it still shine with Your welcome and love,
so that whoever comes in my doors
senses that You are present.
~ Ellyn Sanna
 
~
 
"I remember my mothers' prayers,
and they have always followed me.
They have clung to me all my life."
~ Abraham Lincoln
 
~
 
"As moms, we're sometimes afraid to
trust God with our children.
But what we fail to realize is this---
He loves them even more than we do.
He loved them before we ever held them in our arms.
We can trust Him with your kids.
~ Michelle Medlock Adams
 
~
 
"Motherhood
is a partnership
with God."
~ UNKNOWN
 
~
 
Printable Issue 2317  Today is Tuesday, May 15th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2317
Several weeks ago our daughter, Jamie, was at a local library with here three children. Molly, who is sandwiched between two brothers is micro-mini sized.
 
Another girl who their family didn't know, commented to Molly that she 'probably was too little to be in school yet'.
 
Molly said she was in kindergarten.
 
"No, you're not!" said the stranger.
 
Older brother, Luke, weighed in to the discussion, "Yes, she is and she's 6 1/2!"
 
"As little as you are, you will have to take kindergarten over," remarked the girl.
 
Frustrated Molly ran to her mom, "Mom, do I have to take kindergarten over?"
 
"No, Molly, you do fine in school," Jamie assured her. "In a few weeks, you will be a first grader."
 
Returning to the gal, Molly reported, "I don't have to take kindergarten again, because I am smart!"
 
That settled the discussion and the looking for books continued for everyone.
 
Jamie said it wasn't too long before the 'new friend' and Molly were outside of the library playing on some playground equipment.
 
Has something like that ever happen to you? Someone tells you something about yourself that isn't the truth?
 
Sometimes the worst person who tells you 'untruths' is what is being told, inside your head:  "You can't". "You never." "You shouldn't have."
 
Like Molly, it might good to run to your Heavenly Father and ask Him it what you have heard or what you are telling yourself is true or not. Many times 'negative', 'evil', 'Satan' loves to tell us things which are not true. Like "you aren't good enough". "God will never forgive you." "You aren't worth loving."
 
If you sincerely ask God, He will tell you the truth....'and the truth will set you free' - (John 8:32).
 
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You love me and You love everyone enough to die for them. Thank You that You always tell me the truth in Love and most of the time that is Good News........of Your willingness to love and care for me.....even when I screw up and even when I don't feel very lovely. Thank You that I can run to You for the 'right answers' every time. In Jesus' Name Who was willing to take my place on the cross that I (everyone) might be able to live life 'set free'. Amen.
Printable Issue 2318  Today is Wednesday, May 16th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2318
Our church family just completed our 31-week study series on "THE STORY" by Max Lucado and Randy Frazee. It was a complete look at the Bible, being painted with a broad brush. It was only natural that the last week took a harder look at the last book of the Bible - Revelation.
 
As the teacher of one of the adult Sunday School classes (which would enter into discussion after our weekly sermons, both on the same topic), I had an 'instruction book' to help lead each week's discussion. I am including a shortened version of the final few paragraphs of our last lesson, it's title was "THE KING IS COMING". It describes those who 'hear and overcome':
 
 
Who are the overcomers and what are they promised?
 
First John is a letter written by the same author - John; he wrote the Gospel of John and Revelation.
We should expect that the same author would use the same words in largely the same way.
Therefore, we should not be surprised that he talked about overcoming five times in this letter.
Check for yourselves in I John 2:13; 2:14; 4:4; 5:4, and 5:5.
(Some translations use the word 'overcome'; others use similar words meaning the same thing.)
 
He (Jesus) who sits on the throne explained to John the inheritance of the overcomers.
 
Revelation 21:7 - 8:
"Everyone who conquers will inherit all these blessings,
and I will be his God and he will be my son.
But cowards who turn back from following me,
and those who are unfaithful to me,
and the corrupt, and murderers,
and immoral, and those conversing with demons,
and idol worshipers and all liars--
their doom is in the Lake that burns with Fire and sulphur.
This is the Second Death."
 
What are the things that overcomers inherit?
The New Heaven and the New Earth and New Jerusalem!
 
The contrast between 'he who overcomes' and the 'unbelieving' tells us that all believers are overcomers!
All believers
 - you and I -
will inherit the unspeakable blessings of this eternal kingdom
wherein God will be our God and the overcomer will be His son.
 
By contrast,
those who do not believe and practice the sins of unbelief
will be excluded from the inheritance and judged with the lake of fire
that was prepared for Satan and his demonic minions.
This place of righteous punishment is a place of torment day and night.
 
What would a person miss if he was not an overcomer?
Then how does someone become an overcomer?
Are YOU an overcomer?
 
***
Printable Issue 2319  Today is Thursday, May 17th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2319
A weekly installment of a couple of Max Lucado thoughts:
 
 

This is Love

“This is love; not that we loved God, but that he loved us."  ~  John 4:10

Love never fails!

Wait a minute, no one has unfailing love!  No person can love with perfection. 

That’s right. But God is not a person. Unlike our love, his love never fails! God’s love is immensely different from ours. Ours depends on the receiver of the love. Our love will be regulated by appearance or by personality. Even when we find a few people we like, our feelings will still fluctuate.

Does God love us because of our goodness? Because of our kindness? Because of our great faith?

No.He loves us because of HIS goodness, kindness, and great faith. The love of God is born from within him, not from what he finds in us.  His love is uncaused, spontaneous. God loves you simply because he has chosen to do so!

 

***

You Are God’s Child

You are God’s child, and God will give you the blessing he promised!     ~ Galatians 4:7

I can’t assure you your family will ever give you the blessing you seek—but I know God will!

If your earthly father doesn’t affirm you, then let your heavenly Father take his place!

It’s one thing to accept him as Lord, another to recognize him as Savior. To recognize God as Lord is to acknowledge that he is sovereign and supreme in the universe. To accept him as Savior is to accept his gift of salvation offered on the cross. 

To regard him as Father is to go a step further! A father is the one in your life who provides and protects. That is exactly what God has done. He has provided for your needs. Protected you from harm. Adopted you. And he has given you his name!

 

***

Printable Issue 2320  Today is Friday, May 18th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2320
Several days ago at our May meeting of our Marys & Marthas, we read together these couple of verses. It seemed like they were just for us, as we continue to receive thanks for the national award which we received and the dollars which we gave to numerous area individuals, families, clubs, and organizations.
 
These words are also for you, as you volunteer and/or give to others:
 
"Feed the hungry!
Help those in trouble!
Then your light will shine out from the darkness,
and the darkness around you shall be as bright as day.
And the Lord will guide you continually,
and satisfy you with all good things,
and keep you healthy, too;
and you will be like a well-watered garden,
like an ever-flowing spring."
~ Isaiah 58:10-11 LB
 
*
Bible Commentary:  "We cannot be saved by works without faith, but our faith lacks sincerity if it doesn't reach out to others. God says he wants our service to go beyond our own personal growth to acts of kindness, charity, justice, and generosity. Pleasing God is more than what we don't eat or don't do; it is what we do for him and for others."
 
****
Printable Issue 2321  Today is Monday, May 21st, 2012; Karen's Korner #2321
A few thoughts taken from "Heart of Joy" perpetual calendar, written by Mother Teresa:
 
"We Christians cannot be divided.
We must all work together.
We are all one.
In this unity, where two or three are gathered,
Christ is there.
 
*
 
"Let's not pray long, drawn-out prayers,
but let's pray short ones full of love.
 
*
 
""God has invested all his love in creating human life.
That is why we are not entitled to destroy it,
especially we who know that
Christ has died for the salvation of that life.
Christ has died and has given everything for that child.
 
*
 
"It is only by being transformed in spirit,
by recognizing both our total inadequacy
and the almighty power of God,
that we can find the door to his kingdom.
 
*
 
"Let us pray for one another.
Let us pray that we may accomplish our life's mission,
which is to be holy.
Let us pray that we will be the
love and kindness of God
in today's world.
 
****
Printable Issue 2322  Today is Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012; Karen's Korner #2322
A couple of days ago I was running the remote through the television channels looking for the 'right' program. I landed for a few minutes on a Christian broadcast. Can't tell you the speaker nor the network. Don't have all of the details, but I liked what I heard.
 
The topic was 'prayer'. Among other things, the speaker was comparing us to sheep; like Jesus does. He said that sheep are not known as 'beasts of burden'. When we think of animals who carry burdens, we think of camels, llamas, donkeys, burrows maybe. We might take them as pack animals to carry our needed items, if we were moving to a remote area.
 
Never sheep; they wouldn't do well carrying our 'burdens'. Neither do people. We are to give our burdens of all kinds to God in prayer. "In prayer, we are giving our burdens to God and we are leaving them there," said the speaker. "If you still have your burdens after you pray, your time with God was just a gripe session."
 
Another part of the broadcast was explaining 'intercessory prayer', in simple terms. "The Bible says that Jesus intercedes for us to His Father," he said. "I like to think of it as an intersection. Jesus stands at a crossroads and brings God on His one hand and us on the other hand, putting our hands into God's."
 
When we 'intercede' for someone, we do the same thing. At the same kind of intersection, we take Jesus' hand in one of our hands and our friend, neighbor, family member into the other, we simply say to Jesus, "Here is my friend. He/she needs help. Needs You. Help him. Help her. Teach him. Let her know how much You love her." Whatever 'burdens' you about that person for whom you care.
 
He said, "Don't worry about being good at it. Nor being lengthy. Just tell Him what is on your heart."
 
Dear Jesus, thank You that You just love us and care for us. Thank You for teaching us how to talk to You and how to bring our friends to You. Help me to care even more for others, like so many people care for me. Thanks for being a part of my day; part of Karen's Korner readers today. Be with them in a special way......today. Amen.
Printable Issue 2323  Today is Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012; Karen's Korner #2323
With our early, warm spring, our bleeding heart leafed out and began to bloom early. It was big and beautiful.
 
And then came a weather change and icy, cold temperatures. Both the leaves and flowers began to curl.
 
I wasn't sure that the freezing temperatures didn't kill our several-year-old perennial.
 
More time past and new leaves came on. Great! It would live to see another year!
 
And then...........new pink and white flowers began to appear.
 
I couldn't believe my eyes!
 
New leaves and more flowers in this growing cycle!
 
It made me think about us and our lives.
 
Sometimes we meet with adversity that causes us to 'lose both our leaves and our blooms'.
 
But if we are rooted in God's Love, we will live to grow and bloom another day.
 
So today is a good day to 'bloom where you are planted', regardless of what kind of weather has come/is coming your way!
Printable Issue 2324  Today is Thursday, May 24th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2324
A couple of Max Lucado's latest every-day, email inspirational thoughts:
 

A Worry-Slapper

Become a “worry-slapper!”  Treat frets like mosquitoes!

Do you procrastinate when a bloodsucking bug lights on your skin?  Do you say, “I’ll take care of that in a moment.”  Of course you don’t!  You give the critter the slap it deserves. 

Be equally decisive with anxiety.  The moment a concern surfaces, deal with it.  Don’t dwell on it.  Head it off before it gets the best of you. 

Don’t waste an hour wondering what your boss thinks; ask her.  Before you diagnose that blemish as cancer, have it examined.  Instead of assuming you’ll never get out of debt, consult an expert.  Be a doer—not a stewer! 

In Matthew 6:32-33,. Jesus said, “Your heavenly Father already knows all your needs.  See the kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need!”

On that you can depend and never worry!

***

Loaded With Fears

I don’t care how tough you are. You may be a Navy SEAL.  Doesn’t matter.  Every parent melts the moment he or she feels the full force of parenthood!

How did I get myself into this?  My moment came in the midnight quiet of an apartment in downtown Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, as I held a human being—my daughter—in my arms.

The semi-truck of parenting comes loaded with fears. Will we have enough money?  Enough answers?  Enough education?  It’s enough to keep a parent awake at night.

God has a heart for parents!  Are we surprised?  After all, God himself is a father. What parental emotion has he not felt?  But because of his great love for us, Romans says, “he did not spare his own son but gave him for us all.  So with Jesus, God will surely give us all things!”

ALL THINGS—must include courage and hope!

****

Printable Issue 2325  Today is Friday, May 25th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2325
Psalm 16, the Message
A David Song
 Keep me safe, O God, I've run for dear life to you.
   I say to God, "Be my Lord!"
      Without you, nothing makes sense. 

 And these God-chosen lives all around—
      what splendid friends they make! 

 Don't just go shopping for a god.
      Gods are not for sale.
   I swear I'll never treat god-names
      like brand-names. 

 My choice is you, God, first and only.
      And now I find I'm your choice!
   You set me up with a house and yard.
      And then you made me your heir! 

The wise counsel God gives when I'm awake
      is confirmed by my sleeping heart.
   Day and night I'll stick with God;
      I've got a good thing going and I'm not letting go. 

 I'm happy from the inside out,
      and from the outside in, I'm firmly formed.
   You canceled my ticket to hell—
      that's not my destination! 

 Now you've got my feet on the life path,
      all radiant from the shining of your face.
   Ever since you took my hand,
      I'm on the right way.
 
***
Printable Issue 2326  Today is Monday, May 28th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2326

Happy Memorial Day; a time to remember veterans who served and gave their lives, in their service to our country, so that we may live with a number of freedoms, which we sometimes take for granted. Today is a good day to attend a memorial service in our local communities or visit graves of loved ones.

Below is a prayer for protection of our current military people and all of us. I can't recall who wrote it nor where I got it:

"O Prince of Peace, we humbly ask Your protection for all our men
and women in military service. Give them unflinching courage to
defend with honor, dignity and devotion the rights of all who are
imperiled by injustice and evil. Guard our churches, our homes,
our schools, our hospitals, our factories, our buildings, and all
those within from harm and peril. Protect our land and its people
from enemies within and without. Grant an early peace with victory
founded upon justice. Instill in the hearts and minds of me and
men and women everywhere a firm purpose to live forever in peace and
good will towards all. Amen."

***


Printable Issue 2327  Today is Tuesday, May 29th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2327
Millions of people have now read the bestseller book "Heaven is for Real", recounting the 'astounding story' of four-year-old Colton Burpo's trip to heaven and back.Now the book is published in several editions including one for kids.
 
We have a kids' copy and I read it last week to our four-year-old grandson Noah. After reading the simpler version to him, Noah commented, "I'd like to meet that little boy!" He doesn't know that Colton is now twelve!
 
Like Noah, lots of us want to meet Colton and his family. Our area has the opportunity when Todd, Sonja, Colton and the rest of the Burpo family comes to Clear Lake, Iowa on Wednesday evening, June 20 - 7:30 - 9:30 p.m. at the downtown city park. There are no tickets; admission is free!
 
We are all invited to attend!
 
An excerpt from the 'for kids book', as told by Colton:
 
"After I got to see and learn all of these
amazing things,
Jesus said, 'Colton, you have to go back now.
I am answering your dad's prayer.'
Then I woke up and I was in
my hospital bed again.
 
I will never, never forget my trip to heaven,
and I will never, never forget what Jesus wants us to know.
 
Jesus really, really loves children.
And Jesus really, really loves you!"
 
*
"Yes, I am sure that nothing can separate us from the love God has for us.
Not death, nor life, not angels, not ruling spirits,
nothing now, nothing in the future,
no powers, nothing above us,
or anything below us,
or anything else in the whole world
will ever be able to separate us from
the love of God
that is in Christ Jesus our Lord."
~ Romans 8:38-39
 
***
Printable Issue 2328  Today is Wednesday, May 30th, 2012; Karen's Korner #2328
Another writing by a budding anonymously author from our area:
 
"Lord, I have verbally offered myself to You.
To live for You, to follow Your ways.
Yet every day I feel apprehensive.
Most every morning, I struggle with myself.
 
I know inside I long to be 100% Your Child;
That everything I do should be of Your Will.
But I turn my back and have second thoughts.
I cling to some selfish things,
I run back to my old ways.
 
Why, Lord Jesus?
 
Remove from me daily,these worldly desires and thoughts.
Show me how to be completely of You, Lord Jesus.
Show me how to step out of the world to Your Love alone.
For Your Love, Lord Jesus, is more than enough.
 
~ Just M.E.
 
***
Printable Issue 2329  Today is Thursday, May 31st, 2012; Karen's Korner #2329
Taken from a graphic in my Life Application Bible:
 
"Scattered among the vivid images of the book of Revelation
is a large collection of names for Jesus.
Each one tells something of his character
and highlights a particular aspect of his role
within God's plan of redemption":
 
A to Z; Beginning to End
Lord
All Powerful One
Son of Man
First and Last
The Living One
Son of God
Witness
Creator
Lion of Judah
Root of David
Lamb
Shepherd
Christ
Faithful and True
Word of God
King of Kings
Lord of Lords
The Morning Star
 
***