Month: September 2011
You are having a nightmare! You are upon a very high tower and you feel like you are falling in slow motion. It is so scary and unless someone helps you, you are going to hit the ground.
Someone throws you a rope…You grab hold of the rope…but Alas! It is anchored to the ground in Nashville, Tennessee. No hope to grabbing the rope and gliding to safety!
Another hears of your predicament and another rope is thrown to you, but is also anchored to the ground in Cleveland, Tennessee!
Another one whose headquarters are in Missouri throws you a rope. Another and another are thrown to you, sincerely hoping to save you…but they are all anchored somewhere on the ground in the USA or in Rome, Italy.
For some, this is not a nightmare…but a spiritual reality! We were once in this nightmare….I remember well!
Finally someone in the church that Jesus built, sees your predicament and throws you a rope. But you have had so many false hopes dashed that you are afraid to take hold of it and glide to safety. Seeing no other choice though, except to tumble…you learn finally, that you need to take the rope. It feels secure…because it is…It is anchored in heaven where its Headquarters and its King is located.
You keep holding to the rope (learning and obeying the gospel of Christ, and living a faithful life unto death) and everything will be ok.
Many people think the church of Christ is just another denomination founded by mankind. But many people are wrong. It is founded by Jesus Christ and He keeps adding the ones to it who obey Him.
“…Upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Matthew 16:18.
And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all. Ephesians 1: 22-23.
Ephesians 4: 4-6 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
America the Beautiful, or so you used to be;
Land of the Pilgrims’ pride; I’m glad they’ll never see…
Babies piled in dumpsters, abortion on demand;
Oh sweet Land of Liberty…. your house is on the sand!
Our children wander aimlessly, poisoned by cocaine,
Choosing to indulge their lusts, when God has said “Abstain.”
From sea to shining sea, our nation turns away
From the teaching of God’s love and a need to always pray.
We’ve kept God in our temples, ow callous we have grown…
When earth is but His footstool and heaven is His throne.
We’ve voted in a government that’s rotting at the core,
Appointing Godless judges who throw reason out the door.
Too soft to place a killer in a well-deserved tomb,
But brave enough to kill a baby, before he leaves the womb!
You think that God’s not angry, that our land’s a moral slum?
How much longer will He wait…before His judgment comes?
-Judge Roy Moore, Alabama
Note: Judge Roy Moore from Alabama. Judge Moore was sued by the ACLU for displaying the Ten Commandments in his courtroom foyer. He has been stripped of his judgeship and now they are trying to strip his right to practice law in Alabama! What a great man and a great patriot.
Your Son For $2.00…….
Several years ago, a new preacher moved to Houston, Texas. Some weeks after he arrived, he had occasion to ride the bus from his home to the downtown area. When he sat down, he discovered that the driver had accidentally given him $2.00 too much change.
As he considered what to do, he thought to himself, “You’d better give the money back. It would be wrong to keep it.” Then he thought, “Oh, forget it…it’s only two dollars. Who would worry about this little amount. Anyway, the bus company gets too much fare; they will never miss it. Accept it as a gift from God’ and keep quiet.”
When his stop came, he paused momentarily at the door, then he handed the money to the driver and said, “Here, you gave me too much change.”
The driver with a smile replied, “Aren’t you the new preacher in town? I have been thinking lately about going to worship somewhere. I just wanted to see what you would do if I gave you too much change. I’ll see you at church on Sunday”
When the preacher stepped off of the bus, he literally grabbed the nearest light pole, held on, and said, “Oh Dear Father…I almost sold Your Son for two dollars!”
What would we sell him for? And who are we influencing? Our children are the ones we influence the most. We probably would not sell Him out for a measly two dollars, but a lot of us have our price…a few hundred dollars maybe, a quiet evening at home when the saints are meeting, an extra hour of sleep, a few bales of hay, important company, a meeting to promote our job, a sports event (spectator or player)…or ????. The list could go on and on………………
Written October 26, 2010
Bobby and I went to Coalgate to their meeting last night. I am so glad we went on this particular night. Richard Jones is such a good speaker and he brings some good thought-provoking lessons. Some things were brought to my attention that explains a lot that has happened in our lives.
“Jesus has walked this trail ahead of us and He knows the pitfalls and we can follow Him with the confidence that He will get us through it safely.” -Richard Jones. It is only by His grace that our life goes as smoothly as it does…because He has seen the pitfalls and can guide us around them! Just one tiny example of what I mean:
While coming back from visiting my dad, we got so terribly sleepy and still had over 2 hours to go. It was almost time for evening worship by the time we got to Anadarko, OK and I wondered how we were going to spend an hour in there and probably 30 min or so visiting with the brethren and still drive home without going to sleep and running off the road. We also had our ‘precious cargo’ in the back seat! It was so very tempting to not stop, but we just couldn’t do that…and to think the kind of example for our children that would have been.
It was amazing that when we got back in the car to finish the trip home…we were not even a bit sleepy! And…we didn’t get sleepy all the way home. If we had decided to not follow Jesus in His trail, I’m convinced things would not have turned out so good. This is just one little example and there are many.
Another thought: There’s always going to be something in our way. Some things that get in our way may be more tempting…some may be less tempting, but the mountains will be there. It’s Satan’s way of getting us back on his side. Jesus knows that but there are times when we think we are following in Jesus footsteps…but we are not at all. We are just fooling ourselves…like we could have done that night by rationalizing our situation.
Yes, there’s something in our way up there, there always will be…but if we follow the trail that Jesus blazed for us,though hard it may seem at the time, we will be all right, but otherwise not so much! Edna L. Ingram
Some say that they love baseball
And the evidence is plain;
Because when it comes to baseball
They never miss a game!
No matter what the weather
Heat, cold, rain or shine;
You can bet they’re going to be there
And you can bet they’ll be on time!
In fact…they’ll be there early,
They wouldn’t miss a single play,
And they’ll stay till the game is over,
If it takes all night and day.
Yes, some say that they love baseball
And you can see without a doubt;
That this game of baseball
Is what their life is all about.
Some say that they love Jesus,
But the evidence is not so clear;
Because when His saints assemble
You never know if they’ll be there.
They’ll be there when it’s convenient,
When they have no where else to be;
When the weather’s fine and the fish aren’t biting
And there’s nothing on TV.
Rarely do they get there
Before the assembly has begun;
If there’s somewhere else they want to be,
They’ll leave before it’s done.
Yes, some say that they love Jesus
But the evidence is plain
Their love for Jesus can’t compare
To the love some have for a game.
-By Wendell Ingram
Sometimes we find it difficult to remember to be thankful when we are enjoying peace and prosperity, and the many good things we have received from God. But something that is even more difficult, is to be thankful when we face trials and troubles, when we suffer the loss of our health, or of a loved one, or of material possessions.
We all have to face these difficulties from time to time, yet we are told in 1 Thessalonians 5:18 “…give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
It is truly difficult to be thankful in times of suffering, but we should keep in mind the words of James as he wrote in James 1:2-3: “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.
As Christians we need to understand that even the trials that we are called to face can become an avenue in which God blesses our lives. I am reminded of a young man whom I met a few years ago. He had been injured in an auto accident and was paralyzed from his waist down. Later, because of his depression, he had taken a gun and shot himself in the temple. His head was badly disfigured, but he survived the suicide attempt.
When I met him he was in a nursing home and had lost his will to live. He would not eat and his weight had dwindled to less than 85 pounds. I began to visit with him every week and we began to study the bible. After several weeks he was baptized into Christ. He took on a renewed interest in life. He began to eat and to gain weight. He looked forward to Sunday when we would pick him up and take him to the morning assembly.
One day when we were talking, I expressed to him my sorrow for his condition and how I wished he were able to walk. He told me that he was glad for his injuries. He said that he had lived a very ungodly life before he was injured and had he not been injured, he would have never been interested in hearing the gospel message and becoming a Christian.
This young man had the faith to look beyond his trials and see the way God had used his trials to bless his life. That is the kind of faith to which we are called. No matter what the circumstances, let us be joyful and give thanks to the Lord. -Wendell Ingram
Everyday in our yard there are lots of activities that go on unnoticed by human eyes. One that almost escaped our attention was a lowly earthworm being picked out of the ground by a mockingbird.
The bird had the worm about half way out of the ground and was still tugging on it when we left. I know it is natural for the little robins and mockingbirds to eat the worms and to feed them to their baby birds, but it made me feel sorry for the worm. We didn’t linger long to see what happened, but later I began to think about how the earthworm must be at the bottom of the heap in God’s creations.
But still…. think how important the earthworm is in the ecology of the earth. Its importance is seen in the breakdown or decomposition of matter. If that process didn’t happen continually…nothing would ever go back to the dust…and think of the putrefying odor that would be constant. It would be unbearable I can imagine.
One of its most valuable attributes is in the garden or flower bed. If a little cornmeal or other similar edible material is added to the soil, it will attract earth worms and you will have a great source of aeration and loosening of the earth around the growing things.
This all started me wondering if God sees us like the earth worm. I know He loves us more than that….because He says we are more valuable than the birds of the air, but He is so great, does he see us like we see the earthworms?
We, mankind in general, are so self focused at times that we think more highly of ourselves than we ought to think and think we are so self-sufficient and yet at other times, we feel that we can’t accomplish anything worthwhile.
The birds, earthworms and other big and little creatures go about doing the things that God put them here to do. We human beings are the only creatures that can think and reason well enough to decide if we are going to do the things we were put here to do. And many times we reason that we are not going to do it. What a tragedy!
One of the things we reason is in the area of teaching someone the gospel and it seems so hard to even bring it up in a conversation with some of our dearest loved ones and friends whom we know are lost unless they change their ways.
Someone very dear to me once gave the example (by his actions) of how to do this effectively. A dear friend was visiting and the question was simply asked, “Monica”, (not her real name) ‘How is your spiritual life?”
Now that is a question that could be asked of anyone and it is virtually inoffensive, but very thought-provoking. It can help determine if they are interested in discussing it further. Even a strong faithful Christian would hesitate to say: “Just great!”
So it is not a conversation stopper like some of the things we usually say. There are many other things we were put on earth to do that we sometimes decide by our actions that we simply are not going to do.