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June 2016 Archives

Printable Issue 3323  Today is Thursday, June 2nd, 2016; Karen's Korner #3323

Sorry for no Karen's Korner yesterday; my computer had to spend the night in a local 'computer hospital'!

"So it is that we are saved by faith in Christ

and not by the good things we do."

~ Romans 3:28 LAB


Bible Commentary:  "Why does God save us by faith alone? 1) Faith eliminates human pride; 2) Faith exalts God, not people; 3) Faith makes salvation available to all; 4) Faith admits that we can't keep the law or measure up to God's standards---we need help; 5) Faith is based on a relationship with God, not on performance for God."


Printable Issue 3324  Today is Friday, June 3rd, 2016; Karen's Korner #3324

God is Greater Than All Creation

"Through Him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made."

~ John 1:3 NIV

"God is not one of several gods. He is absolutely supreme over everything! God is greater than creation. This means there is nothing in my life:

* no circumstance or crisis;

* no habit or heartache;

* no sickness or grief;

* nothing visible or invisible -

* nothing that is greater than God!

"What are you facing that is greater than you are?

* a habit;

* a person;

* a problem?

"Praise God for His deity! He is Creator Who is in authority over everything, fully able to control that which not only seems, but is, beyond our abilities to handle.

~ written by Anne Graham Lotz


Printable Issue 3325  Today is Saturday, June 4th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3325

(An extra Karen's Korner on Saturday to make up for the 'down' computer and missing one in the middle of the week.)

Something written by Sarah Young from her "Jesus Calling:  Enjoying Peace in His Presence" for today, June 4:

"Welcome Challenging Times as opportunities to trust Me. You have Me beside you and My Spirit within you, so no set of circumstances is too much for you to handle. When the path before you is dotted with difficulties, beware of measuring your strength against those challenges. That calculation is certain to riddle you with anxiety. Without Me, you wouldn't make it past the first hurdle!

"The way to walk through demanding days is to grip My hand tightly and stay in close communication with Me. Let your thoughts and spoken words be richly flavored with trust and thankfulness. Regardless of the day's problems, I can keep you in perfect Peace as you stay close to Me."

Taken from James 1:2; Philippians 4:13; Isaiah 26:3


Printable Issue 3326  Today is Monday, June 6th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3326

Last week I had an 'attack' of condemning thoughts.

Where do our thoughts come from? And where do they go to?

I am a creative person; some of my thoughts are GREAT! Some of them, not so hot. But what about the ones that aren't even anything I/we even truly think or believe? They are just a random, untruth flying across the 'screens' of our minds.

I can recall one time lots of years ago when I went to a morning coffee with a handful of gals to our friend's home. It was a beautiful one. All the tableware matched; the goodies looked great on our plates and everything tasted as good as it looked.

When I got home, I looked around our farm home, thinking it looked like a dump in comparison. I didn't own such nice serving pieces. And the thoughts continued.

But then I stopped. "Where were these thoughts coming from?" It was a sense of jealousy that I didn't like. And I knew they weren't mine!!

As I reflected, I could have owned matching plates and cups. I could go buy them if I wanted, but that isn't who I am. My friend was good at all of those things! My job was to enjoy her and her talents. Not to get caught up in the 'lies' which were swirling in my head.

So when thoughts come, it is time to sort! Which ones of them are real and true? Which ones are worth hanging on to or do something about? Which are worth dismissing, because they aren't even ours in the first place?

The Bible says, "Fix your thoughts on what is true and good and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely, and dwell on the fine, good things in others. Think about all you can praise God for and be glad about it." (Philippians 4:8 LAB).

Printable Issue 3327  Today is Tuesday, June 7th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3327

"Your steadfast love, O Lord, is as great as all the heavens.

Your faithfulness reaches beyond the clouds.

Your justice is as solid as God's mountains.

Your decisions are as full of wisdom as the oceans are with water.

You are concerned for men and animals alike.

How precious is your constant love, O God!

All humanity takes refuge in the shadow of your wings.

You feed them with blessings from your own table and let them drink from your rivers of delight."

~ Psalm 36:5 - 9 LAB


Bible Commentary:  ""In contrast to evil men and their wicked plots that end in failure, God is loving, faithful, just, and wise. His love is greater than the heavens; his faithfulness reaches past the clouds; his justice is as solid as a mountain; and his decisions as full of wisdom as the oceans with water. We need not fear evil people because we know God loves us, judges evil, and will care for us throughout eternity."


Printable Issue 3328  Today is Wednesday, June 8th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3328

The Way UP is Down

"He humbled himself and became obedient to death--even death on a cross!"

~ Philippians 2:8 NIV

"What opinion do you have of yourself? Because of the lofty position you hold, at least in your own eyes, what service do you think is degrading and 'beneath' you? Washing dishes? Babysitting children? Visiting prisoners?

"The apostle Paul, writing from a Roman prison cell, exhorted you and me to have the same attitude of Jesus, 'Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearan

ce as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death-even death on a cross!' (Philippians 2:6-8 NIV) How repulsive and prideful to think anything--any job, any person, any position, any service, any task, and place--is beneath you and me when Jesus, Lord of glory, Creator of the universe, left heaven's throne and took upon Himself the form of a servant! The way up.....is down!"

~ written by Anne Graham Lotz

Printable Issue 3329  Today is Thursday, June 9th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3329

Something taken from "Each New Day" by Corrie ten Boom:

"A man and his son went over a long, narrow bridge. It was over a broad river, and the boy said, 'Daddy, I'm afraid. Do you see all that water down there?'

"'Give me your hand, boy,' the father said. The moment the boy felt his father's hand, he was not scared. In the evening they had to go back again, and this time it was pitch dark.

"'Now I am more afraid than this morning!' the boy cried. The father took the little fellow in his arms. Immediately the boy fell asleep, to awaken the next day in his own bed. That is what death is like for the Christian. He falls asleep and wakes up at home.

"Afraid of what? To feel the Spirit's glad release.

"To pass from pain to perfect peace, The strife and strain of life to cease,

"Afraid of that? Afraid of what?

"Afraid to see the Savior's face, To hear his welcome and to trace,

"The glory gleams of wounds of grace, Afraid of that?"

"O death, where is thy victory? O death, where is they sting?'

I Corinthians 15:55 RSV

"Lord Jesus, thank you that you have conquered death. What a comfort to be safe in your arms. Thank you that you are always there to take our trembling hands in your strong hands."


Printable Issue 3330  Today is Friday, June 10th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3330

(Computer troubles continue; hang on for Monday!)

A handful of sayings from a flip pad of "Touched by an Angel: Everlasting Love":

"Love doesn't hide. It stays and fights.

It goes the distance. That's Why God made love so strong."


"God will take care of you.

I promise He will."


"Wherever you go,

God is already there."


"God loves you. He loves you family....

and all the people whose lives you're about to touch."


"There's nothing to be afraid of.

On one side there is life.

And on the other side there is life, too."


"God can take the biggest mess

and turn it into something good."


Printable Issue 3331  Today is Tuesday, June 14th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3331

(Computers are wonderful when they work! Got mine out of the 'shop' after a few days, just a bit ago!)

Something written by Max Lucado:

Jesus Has Unimpeachable Authority

"The Scriptures say, 'Jesus sustains everything by the mighty power of his command' (Hebrews 1:3). Jesus has unimpeachable authority. The Roman government tried to intimidate him. False religions tried to silence him. The Devil tried to kill him. All failed!

"Jesus is the command center of the galaxies. He occupies the Oval Office. He stopped the waves with a word. He spoke and a tree withered. He spoke again and a basket became a banquet. Jesus said in Matthew 11:27, 'All things have been handed over to me by my Father.'

All things includes Satan. Jesus outranks him in every situation. He must obey Jesus, and he knows it. The Bible says that prayers offered in the name of Jesus have 'divine power to demolish strongholds' (2 Corinthians 10:4). Is Satan setting up a stronghold in your life? Lift up a prayer and unleash the demolition power of Jesus!


Printable Issue 3332  Today is Wednesday, June 15th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3332

Last fall there was a women's conference in a neighboring town, which a number of area women attended. Among other things from the day were "YOU ARE........." cards at everyone's lunch place. There was a mix of maybe twenty cards; each person had one.

Here is one from the set; they seemed to speak volumes to each gal as we read them aloud to one another. So let this be 'your card' for the day:

You are KIND

"Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me." (Jesus is speaking)

"You are a breath of fresh air to everyone that meets you. The kindness you show to those you love is appreciated beyond what words can express. Know that even when you think no one notices........they do! You have shown kindness to strangers that has given them strength to make it through another day. Your smile to those that feel forgotten and ignored gives strength. God has used your spirit to alter the course of peoples' lives and turn generations of their families from a path of destruction to a path of peace. Know in all you do God sees and He is pleased!"


Printable Issue 3333  Today is Thursday, June 16th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3333

"The Lord is my light and my salvation;

he protects me from danger----

whom shall I fear?"

~ Psalm 27:1 LAB


Bible Commentary:  "Fear is a dark shadow that envelops us and ultimately imprisons us within ourselves. Each of us has been a prisoner of fear at one time or another---fear of rejection, misunderstanding, uncertainty, sickness, or even death. But fear can be conquered by the bright liberating light of the Lord who brings salvation. If you want to dispel the darkness of fear in your life, remember with the psalm writer that 'the Lord is my light and my salvation.'"


Printable Issue 3334  Today is Friday, June 17th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3334

Something written by Max Lucado:

God Uses Failures

"Psalm 40:3 says, 'He has given me a new song to sing....'Have you heard voices of failure? When you lost your job, flunked the exam, or dropped out of school? When your marriage went south..........when you failed? The voices began to howl...and you joined them! Failure finds us all.

"Bookstores overflow with volumes on how to succeed. But you'll look a long time before you find a section called 'How to Succeed at Failing'. Maybe no one knows what to say. But God does. His book is written for failures. David was a moral failure, yet God used him. Elijah was an emotional train wreck after Mount Carmel, but God blessed him. Perfect people? No. Perfect messes? You bet. Yet God used them. A surprising and welcome discovery of the Bible is this:   God uses failures!

Printable Issue 3335  Today is Monday, June 20th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3335

Happy Father's Day! I am sure most people found a way to celebrate the day and the 'men' in our lives yesterday.

We had a special treat at our church worship service. Tom Simmons and his four grown sons sang a song during the offering portion of our Father's Day celebration. The five Simmons sang together a lot when the boys were small children at home.

The song they chose had several verses and a repeated chorus. They had barely begun, when they got to the first chorus. A voice like an angel could be heard from the back pew. Reggie's (son #2) nearly five-year-old daughter was singing along with her dad, grandpa and uncles! And as each chorus came around, she got more involved: singing loudly, raising her little hands, nearly dancing and twisting as she sang!

Here are the words to the song. Visualize the exuberant young girl and, maybe like she did, we need to sing at the top of lungs this morning!

"You have done so much for me, O Lord. No wonder I am glad! I will sing for joy." (Psalm 92:4)

Glorious Day (Living He Loved Me)

By Casting Crowns

One day when Heaven was filled with His praises. One day when sin was black as could be.

Jesus came forth to be born of a virgin. Dwelt among men, my example is He.

Word became flesh and the light shined among us. His glory revealed.


Living. He loved me. Dying. He saved me.

Buried. He carried my sins far away. Rising. He justified freely forever.

One day He's coming. Oh glorious day, oh glorious day.

One day they led Him up Calvary's mountain. One day they nailed Him to die on a tree.

Suffering anguish, despised and rejected. Bearing our sins, my Redeemer is He.

Hands that healed nations, stretched out on a tree. And took the nails for me.


One day the grave could conceal Him no longer. One day the stone rolled away from the door.

Then He arose, over death He had conquered. Now is ascended, my Lord evermore.

Death could not hold Him, the grave could not keep Him. From rising again.

Chorus (for you, me, our church service, and a nearly five-year-old that couldn't contain her JOY!:)

One day the trumpet will sound for His coming. One day the skies with His glories will shine.

Wonderful day, my Beloved One bringing. My Savior Jesus is mine.


Printable Issue 3336  Today is Tuesday, June 21st, 2016; Karen's Korner #3336

"For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord.

They are plans for good and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope."

~ Jeremiah 29:11 LAB


Bible Commentary:  "We're all encouraged by a leader who stirs us to move ahead, someone who believes we can do the tasks he has given and who will be with us all the way. God is that kind of leader. He knows the future, and His plans for us are good and full of hope. As long as the God who knows the future provides our agenda and goes with us as we fulfill His mission, we can have boundless hope. This does not mean we will be spared pain, suffering, or hardship, but that God will see us through to a glorious conclusion."


Printable Issue 3337  Today is Wednesday, June 22nd, 2016; Karen's Korner #3337

Written by Dr. David Jeremiah

Why Do Doubts Arise in Your Mind?

"And He said to them, 'Why are you troubled? And why do doubts arise in your hearts?'"

Luke 24:38

"As Christians, we've placed our faith in the Lord Jesus and believe what the Bible says about Him. We believe He died for our sins and rose on the third day. We believe He returned to heaven and is coming again. We believe those things because they are true. Our faith is rooted in clear thinking, and we know we can hold it with intellectual integrity.

"Yet traces of doubt can still streak through our minds. That happened to the disciples in Luke 24. When Jesus appeared on Easter evening, they were terrified and thought He was a spirit. He allayed their fears with the reality of His presence, saying, 'Why do doubts arise in your hearts? Behold My hands and My feet...' Only after He ate some broiled fish did their fears turn to faith.

"If you suffer twinges of doubt, don't panic. Keep your eyes on Jesus. Look at His wounds. Study His resurrection. Look at how He changes lives, And the same Savior who convinced the disciples will strengthen tour faith.

"The faith that the Bible requires is intelligent faith. It is neither blind nor irrational...No one is asked to sacrifice his intellect when he puts his faith in the God of the Bible."

~ Don Stewart


Printable Issue 3338  Today is Thursday, June 23rd, 2016; Karen's Korner #3338

Bettie B. Youngs is an author, counselor, consultant with a PhD in education. She was a teacher of the year, lecturers internationally, and has contributed pieces to the popular, well-known Chicken Soup for the Soul books.

She hails for our neighboring community of Eagle Grove and returns to our area for her class reunion this weekend. Youngs will be speaking at Clarion's Heartland Museum on Saturday afternoon.

A friend loaned me one of her books, Values from the Heartland, to read. We don't get too many authors and people doing book signings in our area, so we will be blessed.

One of the chapters in Values from the Heartland recounts some of her childhood memories of country school and laments the eventual closing of all rural schools in Iowa.

She bullet points about thirty things she learned as part of her country school days. I am sharing a handful of them:

* Pulling your weight maintains friendships and is good for your self-esteem;

* Charity happens to people in pairs. One gives and one receives;

* Handicapped people are people with a different set of gifts;

* In serving others, you also serve yourself;

* It takes every able body to make up a good team of baseball, or whatever---a group, a family, an organization;

* It's easier to learn when the teacher respects the learner;

* It's better to teach children than to teach subjects;

* Winning is about cooperation; cooperation results in winning;

* It is easier to concentrate after physical exercise;

* Mrs. Hood (her teacher) was right when she said, 'You always miss 100 per cent of the shots you don't take.'


Printable Issue 3339  Today is Friday, June 24th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3339

Relying on God Alone

"When the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout......the wall fell down flat."

~ Joshua 6:20 NKJV

"God surely gave Joshua the strangest strategy for overcoming Jericho that any general has ever been given! God told him to lead his armed men in a silent march around the outside walls of the city once a day for six days. On the seventh day, they were to march around the city seven times. On the last lap, the priests in the army were to blow trumpets loudly and the people were to shout. Then the wall would collapse, and Joshua's army could successfully capture the city!

"God answers prayer, but sometimes the way He goes about it can incredibly confusing and unconventional, which is one reason He goes about it that way----so that our faith rests totally in Him. Then, when the answer comes, we know without a shred of doubt that it comes from Him alone and that He knows best. And we give Him all the glory."

~ Written by Anne Graham Lotz


Printable Issue 3340  Today is Saturday, June 25th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3340

(Here is one for Saturday! One day a week ago, I missed sending a Karen's Korner due to my computer being down. I have this fetish of 'five per week' korners, so that Friday's issue always ends in '5' or '0'. I was off by one number. This is a catch up!)

I have a battery powered weed whacker. Jim always wound in the next batch of 'string' when the whacker was out. Now it is my job. I wound it once last summer and it worked. This year I did the same thing. Couldn't make it work!

I took it to the hardware store where we had purchased it. The guy who was helping me said, "Don't you see the arrows on the spool? You wound it the wrong way."

No, I hadn't seen them. Yes, I must have wound it right last year. I had a 50-50 chance of doing it right.

Sort of like us and our lives:  we can do some things right, part of the time........with or without Jesus' help and guidance. But if we follow 'His arrows', we can become 100 per centers!


"Your Word is a lamp to my feet

and a light to my path."

~ Psalm 119:105


Printable Issue 3341  Today is Monday, June 27th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3341

Something for you and me for today from Sarah Young's "Jesus Calling:  Enjoying Peace in His Presence", written for June 27:


"You have journeyed up a steep, rugged path in recent days. The way ahead is shrouded by uncertainty. Look neither behind you nor before you. Instead, focus your attention on Me, your constant Companion. Trust that I will equip you fully for whatever awaits you on your journey.

"I designed time to be a protection for you. You couldn't bear to see all your life at once. Though I am unlimited in time, it is in the present moment that I meet you. Refresh yourself in My company, breathing deep draughts of My Presence. The highest level of trust is to enjoy Me moment by moment. I am with you, watching over your wherever you go."

~ written as if Jesus is talking directly to us; taken from Psalm 143:8; Genesis 28:15


Printable Issue 3342  Today is Tuesday, June 28th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3342

Jesus' newly-called disciples had been fishing all night with no success. Jesus called out to them and gave them 'fishing instructions'. Who was He? They were the fishermen!

And so goes the story:

"He said to Simon, 'Now go out where it is deeper and let down your nets and you will catch a lot of fish!'

"'Sir,' Simon replied, 'we worked hard all last night and didn't catch a thing. But If you say so, we'll try again.'

"And this time their nets were so full that they began to tear! A shout for help brought their partners in the other boat and soon both boats were filled with fish and on the verge of sinking.

"When Simon Peter realized what had happened, he fell to his knees before Jesus and said, 'Oh, Sir, please leave us---I'm too much of a sinner for you to have around.'"

~ Luke 5:4 - 8 LAB

Bible Commentary: "Peter was awestruck at this miracle, and his first response was to feel his own insignificance in comparison to this man's greatness. Peter knew Jesus had healed the sick and cast out demons, but he was amazed that Jesus cared about his day-to-day routine and understood his needs. God is interest not only in saving us, but also in helping us in our daily lives."


Printable Issue 3343  Today is Wednesday, June 29th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3343

If you live in Iowa, chances might be that you have heard of Governor Branstad signing a proclamation allowing all 99 counties an "80 hours" marathon, reading the Bible on courthouse lawns across the state. Each counties' supervisors had to approve the action in their individual counties. It's happening right now.

Our county (Wright) embarked on the journey yesterday. I lined up a handful of people to take a 'shift' of reading. I took an hour last night at about sundown. The 'team' started at 7 a.m. Willis Soesbe and I were reading in Deuteronomy. Peggy O'Neill, reading just before us, said, "Oh, I have to stay and listen to you read the ten commandments.", which we did and she did!

As I told Karen's Korner readers, I am a Bible reader, not a scholar. If I would have been asked which book the ten commandments is in, I probably couldn't have told you. But I will remember now, because I 'read it on the courthouse square in June 2016'.

Here is one commandment that caught my eye last night:

"You must not been with desire for another man's wife, nor envy him for his home, land, servants, oxen, donkeys, nor anything else he owns."

~ Deuteronomy 5:21 LAB


Bible Commentary on this verse: "We are not to envy anyone for anything. Not only can envy make us miserable, it can also lead us to other sins such as adultery and stealing. Envy is a useless emotion because God is able to provide everything we really need, even if he does not always give us everything we want. To drive out envy, we need to practice being content with what we have. Instead of thinking about what we don't have, we should thank God for what is ours and strive to be content. After all, our most important possession is free and available to everyone---eternal life through Christ." 


And if you happen to be in Clarion between now and Sunday evening, stop by the courthouse. Who knows? Someone might hand you a Bible and ask you to read a chapter before you leave!

Printable Issue 3344  Today is Thursday, June 30th, 2016; Karen's Korner #3344

Today's email inspirational thought written by Max Lucado:

Your Helper

"God says, 'Never will I leave you, never will I forsake you!' That's the promise God gave Joshua. And He gives you the same promise. The writer of Hebrews quoted those same words in Hebrews 13:5-6 and then concluded by saying, 'The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can anyone do to me?'

"What can anyone do to me? You know the answers. Lie to me. Deceive me. Bully me. But the Scripture asks a different question. The Greek word for helper in this passage means 'to shout, to run.' When you nee help, God runs with a shout, 'I'm coming!' He never leaves you. Ever! God is strong, you will be strong. Since He is able, you will be able. Since He has no limits, you have no limits.

"The Lord is my helper! What can man do to me?"