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October 2017 Archives

Printable Issue 3656  Today is Monday, October 2nd, 2017; Karen's Korner #3656

While I was walking for part of an hour this weekend, I walked by a concrete memorial of a young man from Clarion who had taken his life several decades ago. Nice guy who was probably in his later 20s  or early 30s.

The thought of anyone taking their own life for any reason is sad.

But why?

Has the person made some poor choices? Been rejected by others? Think too lowly of themselves for who knows what reason?

But God!

No matter what any of us (or people we know) have had happen to us or what we have done, God has words of His Love for us! Even if we don't tend to love ourselves.........He does!

As I was looking at some of His words of love for us, the Bible just oozes with His Love for us. I am going to type a few here. I am sure readers have lots more of their favorites (share them if you'd like!):


"For God loved the world (use your name, name of someone you know/love) so much that He gave His Only Son so that everyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.

"God did not send His Son into the world to condemn it, but to save it."

~ John 3:16 & 17

*

"So there is now no condemnation awaiting those who belong to Christ Jesus."

~ Romans 8:1

*

"But if we confess our sins to Him, He can be depended on to forgive us and to cleanse us from every wrong."

~ I John 1:9

*

When thumbing through the pages of I John, there are words all over the verses calling us, ' my little children'; 'dear children'; 'O dear children'; 'child of God'; 'dearly loved friends'; 'dear young friends'.

Not so much what we think about ourselves. What does God think about us? Our friend or family member?

He keeps us in pretty high esteem!!



Printable Issue 3657  Today is Tuesday, October 3rd, 2017; Karen's Korner #3657

Wow! The Las Vegas shootings and disaster is controlling our thoughts and minds.

In light of what happened, what should we do? Maybe give some money to some organization to aid their families; maybe pray for them. Where does that leave us and how we live our lives in the future?

Walk with me back to the summer of 2001. Jim and I were considering traveling to China as part of one of our bank's trips in early November. My youngest sister Eileen decided to travel with us. So we made our travel deposits.

Then came '9/11'. The tour company wrote all of us telling us that we didn't have to go, if we didn't want to; if we believed that we would not be safe. "Your final payment is due," the letter stated, "we will even refund your deposit if you choose not to travel."

"What should we do?" I asked Jim.

I asked the same question to Eileen in a phone call.

"What do you mean?" was her response to me. "Do you think all those people went to the trade towers that morning, afraid they might be hurt or die? If terrorists want to find you, they'll find you. I already sent me money in."

I hung up the phone and sent the money in for Jim and me to travel, too.

Lots we didn't know about our futures in November 2001. We flew in a plane that was about 2/3 full. We were fine and had a great time.

Lots of things we don't know for our futures today either. Maybe we should not be running scared, afraid of what 'might' happen. Maybe we need to continue enjoying our lives, realizing that 'bad people can do bad things', but be reminded of what God says:

.

"Fear not, for I am with you. Do not be dismayed.

I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you;

I will uphold you with my victorious right hand."

~ Isaiah 41:10 LAB

***

Printable Issue 3658  Today is Wednesday, October 4th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3658

"Two can accomplish more than twice as much as one, for the results can be much better.

If one falls, the other pulls him up; but if a man falls when he is alone, he's in trouble."

~ Ecclesiastes 4:9 & 10 LAB

*

Bible Commentary:  "There are advantages to cooperating with others. Life is not designed for isolation, but companionship; not for loneliness, but for intimacy. Some people prefer isolation because they feel they cannot trust anyone. But we are not here on earth to serve ourselves, but to serve God and others. Don't isolate yourself from others and 'go it alone'. Seek companionship; be a team member."

*

Over a number of years, I have been asked to talk to groups of people about Clarion's Marys & Marthas (M & Ms), of which I am a part. One of my closing comments has been something I once heard:  "It is said that one horse can pull five tons; pair that horse with another horse of similar size and together they can pull 32 tons!"

The Marys & Marthas have learned over our nearly seventeen years, we can accomplish so much more together than we could have ever done as an individual. Pulling together is one of the keys.

God knew it. He designed it!


Printable Issue 3659  Today is Thursday, October 5th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3659

This is today's Max Lucado; hope that it gives you a smile:


PRAY FOR PARTICULARS

"A father was teaching his three-year-old daughter the Lord's Prayer. She would repeat the lines after him. Finally she decided to go solo. She carefully enunciated each word, right up to the end of the prayer. 'Lead us not into temptation,' she prayer, 'but deliver us from e-mail.' Not a bad prayer!

"God call us to pray about everything! We tell God exactly what we want. We pray the particulars. When the wedding ran low of wine, Mary wasn't content to say, 'Help us, Jesus.' She was specific. She said, "They have no more wine' (John 2:3 NIV). A specific prayer is a serious prayer. If I say to you, 'Do you mind if I come by your house sometime?' you may not take me seriously. But if I say, 'Can I come over this Friday night? I really need your advice.' Then you know my petition is sincere. When we offer specific requests, God knows the same. So, offer yours!"

***


Printable Issue 3660  Today is Friday, October 6th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3660

The National Day of Prayer task force is asking America to pray for America during October; sending out four bullet points of prayer possibilities.

Here are the first two:


"Ask God to bring together His Church in America as a witness to the world."

"May they all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us, so that the world may believe you sent me." ~ John 17:21

*

"Lord, regardless of our own preferences or traditions, draw each of Your followers together as a witness of Jesus to the entire world.

"Father, use Your Church to serve as the unifying body of people in America.

"Holy Spirit, wake up Your Church to spiritual revival, experiencing the manifest presence of God as a people."

**

"Trust God to turn the leaders of our nation toward His Word and will."

"A king's heart is like a channeled water in the Lord's house. He directs it wherever he chooses."  ~ Proverbs 21:1

*

"Lord Jesus, we ask You to turn the heart  of our President, Vice-President, and both houses of Congress toward Your Word and Your ways.

"Father, we ask You to turn the hearts of all of our political leaders to come together for the good of our nation.

"Holy Spirit, we ask You to place God's armor upon each of our leaders, protecting them and their families in every way."

********

Printable Issue 3661  Today is Monday, October 9th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3661

Looking back on the last few 'korners', I see that they are focused on prayer. Maybe it is because we have a number of problems invading our world, country, and individual lives with not mnay possible solutions. Maybe it makes prayer look like a viable option; maybe the only one?

Yesterday's sermon at our church looked at Colossians 3:9 - 12 and using the words as a prayer for others. Here is the breakdown:

HOW TO PRAYER FOR OTHERS

How many people in your life could be touched if you prayed this way?


* Be thankful for their faith and changed lives (v. 3).

* Ask God to help them know what he wants them to do (v. 9).

* Ask God to give them deep spiritual understanding (wisdom) (v. 9).

* Ask God to help them live for him (honor & peace) (v. 10).

* Ask God to give them more knowledge of himself (v. 10).

* Ask God to give them strength for endurance (patience) (v. 11).

* Ask God to fill them with joy, strength, and thankfulness (v. 11).


The next verse (12) says, "For He has rescued us out of the darkness and gloom of Satan's kingdom

and brought us into the Kingdom of his dear Son, who bought our freedom with his blood and forever us

all of our sins."

**


Printable Issue 3662  Today is Tuesday, October 10th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3662

"And this world is falling away,

and these evil forbidden things will go with it,

but whoever keeps doing the will of God will live forever."

~ 1 John 2:17 LAB

*

Bible Commentary:  "When our attachment to things is strong, it's hard to believe that the things we want will one day pass away. It may be even harder to believe that the person who does the will of God will live forever. But this was John's (writer) conviction based on the facts of Jesus' life, death and resurrection, and the promises He made. Knowing that this evil world and its sin will end gives us courage to continue doing God's will."

***


Printable Issue 3663  Today is Wednesday, October 11th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3663

Choose the Presence of God

"God repeatedly pledges his presence to his people! To Abram, God said, 'Do not be afraid......I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward' (Genesis 15:1). God told Joshua, 'Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go' (Joshua 1:9 NIV). In the ultimate declaration of communion, God called himself Immanuel, which means, God with us. He became flesh. He became sin. He defeated the grave. He is still with us. In the form of his Spirit, he comforts, teaches, and convicts.

"Don't assume God is watching from a distance. Isolation creates a downward cycle of fret. Choose instead to be the person who clutches the presence of God with both hands! We can calmly take our concerns to God because he is as near as our next breath! And because the Lord is near, we can be anxious for nothing!"

~ By Max Lucado

**

Printable Issue 3664  Today is Thursday, October 12th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3664

It was about a year ago now that five of us friends from here, flew to Las Vegas to meet a friend who now lives in Arizona. It was for an extended weekend of just touring the sights and sounds of the area, and hanging out and being together.

In light of the shooting there a couple of weeks ago, would I go again? You bet! It was safe then and it is probably safer today. The one dangerous person in the midst of hundreds of thousands, is now gone!

The Psalm writer in chapter 91 says, "This I declare that He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; He is my God, and I am trusting Him. For He rescues you from every trap, and protects you from the fatal plague. He will shield you with His wings! They will shelter you. His faithful promises are your armor. Now you don't need to be afraid of the dark any more, nor fear the dangers of the day, nor dread the plagues of darkness, nor disasters in the morning. (verses 4 - 6).

***

Printable Issue 3665  Today is Friday, October 13th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3665

Last Friday, Karen's Korner contained two of the four prayers to pray during October for America; written by National Day of Prayer President Ronnie W. Floyd.

The first two points were 'asking God to bring together His Church in America as a witness to the world; and trusting God to turn the leaders of our nation toward His Word and will.

Here are the final two:

Appeal to God to bring the next Great Spiritual Awakening to America in our generation.

"Besides this, since you know the time, it is already the hour for you to wake up from sleep, because now our salvation Is nearer than when we first believed."   ~ Romans 13:11

* 'Father, we ask that Your sovereign will be the next Great Spiritual Awakening to occur in our generation.

* 'Lord Jesus, because of Your grace, pour out Your power upon our nation, bringing forth a spiritual awakening that will result in millions coming to faith in Jesus Christ.

* 'Holy Spirit, move Your Church to pray extraordinarily until we see the next Great Spiritual Awakening in our generation'

*

Believe God now with us as we move and work toward the 2018 National Day of Prayer on May 3, 2018.

" Ask and it will be given to you. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be opened to you."   ~ Matthew 7:7

* 'Lord, we know that You know the things we need before we ask, but we ask You to move churches, denominations, and ministries toward leading and participating in the 2018 National Day of Prayer.

* 'Oh, God, please call forth and mobilize thousands upon thousands of volunteers to help us lead thousands and thousands of prayer gatherings across America on May 3, 2018.

* Holy Spirit of God, we ask You to move people to support the daily and annual ministry of the National Day of Prayer through prayer, service, and giving.'

****

Printable Issue 3666  Today is Monday, October 16th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3666

This verse in the Bible talks about Abraham and Sarah. God was promising they would have a son; seemed impossible. They were both old; very old!

"Is anything too hard for God?" (God speaking)

Next year just as I told you, I will certainly see to it that Sarah has a son."

~ Genesis 18:14 LAB

*

Bible Commentary:  "'Is anything too hard for God!' This question reveals much about God. Make it a habit to insert your specific needs into this question, 'Is this day in my life too hard for God?' 'Is this habit I am trying to break too hard for God?' 'Is this communication problem I am having too hard for God?' Asking the question in this way reminds you that God is personally involved in your life and offers His power to help you."

***


Printable Issue 3667  Today is Tuesday, October 17th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3667

It was three years ago today that Jim passed away.

One day last week, I spotted a large framed saying, complete with graphic, hanging in our local flower shop. Since we are an agrarian society, and especially in the Midwest, this is for Jim's memory but also for dads, brothers, grandfathers, etc. which prompts our memory of them:


CLOSE THE GATE

"For this one farmer the worries are over, lie down and rest your head.

"Your time has been and struggles enough, put the tractor in the shed.

"Years were not that easy, many  downright hard, but your faith in God transcended.

"Put away your tools and sleep in peace. The fences have been mended.

"You raised a fine family, worked the land well and always followed the Son.

"Hang up your shovel inside the barn; your work here on earth is done.

"A faith few possess led your journey through life often a jagged and stony way.

"The sun is setting, the cattle are all bedded, and here now is the end of your day.

"Your love of God's soil have passed on to your kin; the stories flow like fine wine.

"Wash off your work boots in the puddle left by blessed rain one final time.

"You always believed that the good Lord would provide and He always had somehow.

"Take off your gloves and put them down, no more sweat and worry for you now.

"Your labor is done, you home now is heaven; no more must you wait.

"You legacy lives on, your love of the land, and we will close the gate."

~ Nancy Kraayenhof

*** 



Printable Issue 3668  Today is Wednesday, October 18th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3668

Rejoice in the Lord!

~ By Max Lucado

"If anyone had a reason to be anxious, it was the apostle Paul! Envision an old man as he gazes out the window of a Roman prison. Half-blind, squinting just to read. Awaiting trial before the Roman emperor. His future is an gloomy as his jail cell.

"Yet to read his words, you'd think he'd just arrived at a Jamaican beach hotel. His letter to the Philippians bears not a fear or complaint. Not one! Instead, he lifts his thanks to God and calls on his readers to the same. 'Rejoice in the Lord always. Again, I will say, rejoice!' (Philippians 4:4)

"Paul's challenge is a decision, deeply rooted in the confidence that God exists, that He is in control, and that He is good. Rejoice in the Lord - always! You can't run the world but you can entrust it to God!"



Printable Issue 3669  Today is Thursday, October 19th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3669

Genuine Truth

"I will heal them and reveal to them the abundance of peace and truth."

~ Jeremiah 33:6 NKJV

"Years ago my mother was invited to a very prestigious dinner party in London, England. As she conversed, Mother discovered that the distinguished-looking older gentleman seated beside her was the former head of Scotland Yard, Great Britain's equivalent of the FBI. Fascinated, she respectfully began to probe him for anecdotes. As he opened up under her genuine interest, he revealed that the departments under his authority had included those for forgery and counterfeiting. When she surmised that he must have spent a lot of time studying counterfeit signatures, he corrected her, 'On the contrary, Mrs. Graham. "I spent all my time studying the genuine thing. That way, when I saw a counterfeit, I could immediately detect it.'

"My mother's dinner partner had unwittingly touched on a very important principle. If you and I want to be able to detect counterfeit truth, we need to immerse ourselves in the real thing. We need to saturate ourselves in the truth of the Word of God."

~ By Anne Graham Lotz

***





Printable Issue 3670  Today is Friday, October 20th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3670

"So we do not look at what we can see right now, the troubles all around us,

but we look forward to the joys in heaven which we have not yet seen.

The troubles will soon be over, but the joys to come will last forever."

~ 2 Corinthians 4:11 LAB

*

Bible Commentary:  "Our troubles should not diminish our faith or disillusion us. Instead, we should realize that there is a purpose in our suffering. Problems and human limitations have several benefits:

1) they help us remember Christ's suffering for us;

2) they help keep us from pride;

3) they help us look beyond this brief life;

4) they prove our faith to others;

5) they give God the opportunity to demonstrate his great power.

"Don't resent your troubles----see them as opportunities."

***


Printable Issue 3671  Today is Monday, October 23rd, 2017; Karen's Korner #3671

For the past number of years, I have taught an adult Sunday School class at our church. The dozen plus participants who attend on any given Sunday have an age span of sixty years.

Our oldest class member:  Herb Billman passed away this last weekend. He would have been 98 in January.

What an inspiration he was to all of us! He was seriously wounded in World War II in Italy which could have cost him his life. Instead it left him with some limited use of his right hand.........for years!

And then he lived!

Married. Two daughters. Worked for years as a livestock feed salesman. Very well liked and respected. Always thankful for the life God had given him, even after he lost his wife a number of years ago.

As a retired person, he spent a lot of time riding his bike and picking up cans and bottles for miles both directions from his home; turning them in for $$ and giving the funds to our church's Bible Bowl team to offset some of their travel and competition expenses. The bike turned into using his pickup as he grew older.

Herb was someone we could always count on to 'be there' for Sunday School and worship services. Even when it was too cold; maybe slippery or snowy! His saying, "If God can give me 24 hours a day, seven days a week, the least I can do is give Him back two hours a week!"

It was later this spring when he stopped attending Sunday services. Too hard for him to get around, and as he told his daughters, "I can't hear any more either, so what is the point of going."

So we celebrate Herb's life for the next couple of days with his funeral home visitation and funeral the next day.

HIs life makes me think of this Bible verse:

"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 40:31 LAB

***


Printable Issue 3672  Today is Tuesday, October 24th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3672

Something taken from Sarah Young's "Jesus Calling:  Enjoying Peace in His Presence" and her daily inspirational flip calendar for October 24:


"Lie down in green pastures of Peace. Learn to unwind whenever possible, resting in the Presence of your Shepherd. This electronic age keeps My children 'wired' much of the time, too tense to find Me in the midst of their moments. I built into your very being the need for rest. How twisted the world has become when people feel guilty about meeting this basic need! How much time and energy they waste by being always on the go, rather than taking time to wsek My direction for their lives.

"I have called you to walk with Me down paths of Peace. I want you to blaze a trail for others who desire to live in Me peaceful Presence. I have chosen you less for your strengths than for your weaknesses, which amplify your need for Me. Depend on Me more and more, and I will shower Peace on all your paths."

~ Taken from Psalm 23:1 - 3; Genesis 2:2 - 3; Luke 1:79

***

Printable Issue 3673  Today is Wednesday, October 25th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3673

This is today's emailed writing from well-known and regarded Max Lucado. It's a good one:

You Belong to God

"When parents send their kids to camp, they have to sign certain documents. One of them asks 'who is the responsible party?' If Johnny breaks his arm or Maria breaks out with measles, who will be responsible? Hopefully mom and dad are willing to sign their names.

"God signed his! When you gave your life to him, he took responsibility for you. Jesus said, 'I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me' (John 10:14 NIV). You are a bride; he is your bridegroom. The church is being 'prepared as a bride adorned for her husband' (Revelation 21:2). You are his child; he is your father. 'You are no longer a salve but God's own child. And since you are his child, God has made you his heir' (Galatians 4:7 NLT).

"You can have peace in the midst of the storms of life because you are not alone. You belong to God!"

****

Printable Issue 3674  Today is Thursday, October 26th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3674

"Some of us have ben given special ability as apostles;

to others he has given the gift of being able to preach well;

some have special ability in winning people to Christ,

helping them to trust him as their Savior;

still others have a gift for caring for God's people

as a shepherd does his sheep,

leading and teaching them in the ways of God."

~ Ephesians 4:11, 12 LAB

*

*Bible Commentary: :"God has given his church an enormous responsibility---to make disciples in every nation. This involves preaching, teaching, healing, nurturing, giving, administering, building, and many other tasks. If we had to fulfill this command as individuals, we might as well give up without trying---it would be impossible. But God calls us as members of his body. Some of us can do one task; some can do another. Together we can obey him more fully than any of us can do alone. It is a human tendency to overestimate what we can do by ourselves and to underestimate what we can do as a group. The truth is just the opposite. Alone, we are quite ineffective. Together, as the body of Christ, we can do far more than we would ever dream possible."

*****

Printable Issue 3675  Today is Friday, October 27th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3675

While Mother Teresa has been gone for a number of years, her words continue with us for generations.

Here are a couple of her thoughts:


"We should give thanks to God for what he has done in us,

with us, and through us.

We should thank him for using us to be his love and mercy."

*

"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 with us."

*

"Let's not pray long, drawn-out prayers,

but let's pray short ones full of love."

*

"The Scriptures tell us, 'I have called you by name.

You belong to me. You are precious to me. I love you.'

God himself declares that we are precious to him.

He loves us, and he wants us to respond to his love."

****

Printable Issue 3676  Today is Monday, October 30th, 2017; Karen's Korner #3676

Our sermon yesterday was taken from Romans 6, verses 1 - 16. If it interest you, maybe you could read it in the next few days:

What Has God Done About Sin?

He has given us NEW LIFE!

* Sin's power is broken (vs.2 & 3);

* Sin-loving nature is buried (v. 4);

* You are no longer under sin's control.

He has given us a NEW NATURE!

* Now you share his new life (v. 5);

* Look upon your old sin nature as dead and unresponsive, and instead be alive to God (v.11);

He has given us NEW FREEDOM!

* Do not let sin control you (v.12);

* Give yourselves completely to God (v. 13);

* You are free (v. 14);

* You can choose your own master (v. 16).

****

Printable Issue 3677  Today is Tuesday, October 31st, 2017; Karen's Korner #3677

God is Good!

"There's a reason the windshield is bigger than the rearview mirror. Your future matters more than your past!

"God's grace is greater than your sin. You thought the problem was your calendar, your marriage, or your job. In reality, it may be unresolved guilt. Don't indulge it! Don't drown in the bilge of your own condemnation. What you did was not good. But your God is good and He will forgive you. He is ready to write a new chapter in your life. Say with Paul, 'Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God is calling us,' (Philippians 3:13 - 14 TLB).

"Your salvation has nothing to do with your work and everything to do with the finished work of Christ on the cross. Rejoice in the Lord's mercy!"

~ By Max Lucado

***