Archive for November, 2008

God is in the Waiting Room

Friday, November 14th, 2008

“Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.” Luke 15:10 King James Version

I watched a family program on television last month. It was about their daughter who was about to give birth. It showed scene after scene of the daughter’s husband pacing up and down the waiting room. It seemed to him like the baby was never going to be born. His wife had been in labor for over twenty hours. To him, that was an eternity. He wanted to do something to help her but he was powerless to help her.

If you will look with your heart, you will see another scene of a waiting room. It is a scene of God and His angels in His waiting room. They are pacing up and down as they anxiously wait for a sinner to come home. Just as the husband was powerless to help his wife birth his baby, so God is unable to make sinners accept His Son as their personal Saviour. Of course, we know that God could make sinners accept His Son into their hearts if He wanted to.

However, God has given us a free will. He wants us to invite Jesus into our hearts because we want to, not because He makes us. He knows that if He just gives us His Son as our personal Saviour without us first asking for forgiveness and without us opening the door of our hearts to His beloved Son, it wouldn’t mean anything to us. We would never feel the forgiveness, unconditional love, grace, mercy and compassion of a Holy God and a loving Saviour.

After a baby is born, there is joy in the hearts of the dad and mother and all of the relatives and friends. There is a lot more rejoicing when a sinner opens His heart to Jesus and is born again into the family of God. I believe the angels shout “Hallelujah” and hug one another with excitement. I also believe that there are tears of joy in the eyes and heart of our Heavenly Father when a sinner is born into His family through the precious blood of His beloved Son. For some of you, God has been pacing the floor of His waiting room for years waiting for you to accept His Son as your personal Saviour.

Please don’t keep Him waiting another hour. Give your heart and life to Jesus right now. Invite the Christ of Calvary into your heart and you will not only make our Heavenly Father happy, you will also experience a joy, peace, excitement and happiness that you have never known.

Jesus will never leave you, not even for one minute. He will be the dearest friend you have ever known. He will take your hand and walk with you through the dark valleys as well as on the mountain tops of joy and happiness. Don’t miss out on spending eternity with Jesus. Say yes to Him right now while you still have time.

JoanneCopyright 2008 by Joanne Lowe, all rights reserved.
Used by permission. http://www.heavenwardbound.com
http://christians-in-recovery.org

You Can Go First

Thursday, November 13th, 2008

“And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.”
Luke 6:31 King James Version

I wonder what would happen if we would say to three people who were waiting in the line behind us at the grocery store to be checked out “You can go first.” I believe that after they got over the shock of our kindness, their hearts and lives would be touched. Joyce Landorf Heatherley, a well known Christian speaker and author said on one of her teaching tapes “We are all ourselves at the grocery store. The real you comes out.”

When we go to the grocery store, we are not trying to impress people, we are just ourselves. Most of the time we are trying to get finished so that we can go home. A lot of times we get impatient if someone is ahead of us in the line at the checkout counter. If we are not polite and kind at the grocery store, they probably think that we are rude and demanding in our homes.

Jesus said “And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.” How many of us can honestly say that we treat people all the time as we want to be treated? I’m ashamed to admit it but I don’t treat people all the time as I want to be treated.

How about you? Are you treating people the way you want to be treated? The next time you go to the grocery store tell three people waiting behind you in the checkout line “You can go first”. They may not respond as you wish they would respond but you will make Jesus happy.

JoanneCopyright 2008 by Joanne Lowe, all rights reserved.
Used by permission. http://www.heavenwardbound.com
http://christians-in-recovery.org

Always in a Good Mood

Wednesday, November 12th, 2008

Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day and for ever.
Hebrews 13:8 King James Version

Have you ever been reluctant to call people on the phone or go visit them because you didn’t know what kind of mood they were in? I have been reluctant to call people many times. I am very reluctant to call this particular person because it seems every time I call, she is in a different mood. Sometimes, she makes critical remarks or is very sarcastic. Needless to say, I don’t call this person very often.

We have someone who is always in a good mood and His name is Jesus. He never changes. He is kind and loving to us all the time. No matter what time we go to Him, whether it is morning, noon or night our precious Saviour is waiting for us with His arms open wide and a heart that is filled with tenderness, compassion, unconditional love and understanding for us. He longs to hold us close to His loving heart and kiss away the tears of frustration, discouragement and sorrow.

Are people reluctant to call you because they don’t know what kind of reception they will get? Do you always give them the impression that you are too busy to talk to them? Jesus was the busiest person there ever was or ever will be yet He was never too busy to talk to anyone. He also didn’t make people make appointments with Him.

Our precious Saviour knew that when people came to Him hurting and brokenhearted that they needed His healing touch right then, not the following week when He could squeeze them into a busy schedule. O that you and I would follow the example of Jesus and stop and listen when people come to us hurting and brokenhearted.

I am so glad that we don’t have to make an appointment to talk to Jesus. However, I think that sometimes He has to make an appointment with us because we get so caught up with our daily schedules. May God forgive us for being too busy to talk to Jesus. Nobody and nothing should come before spending time with our precious Saviour. If Jesus were to tell you that He wants to talk to you right now, are you willing to stop what you are doing and spend time with Him? What kind of mood are you in? Will Jesus see a smile on your face or will He see a frown?

JoanneCopyright 2008 by Joanne Lowe, all rights reserved.
Used by permission. http://www.heavenwardbound.com
http://christians-in-recovery.org

Letting Dust Settle

Tuesday, November 11th, 2008

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8).

I nearly sent out this devotional a day early, simply because of the vast number of emails I began receiving immediately after the results of Tuesday’s election became evident. But then I prayed and decided to wait and allow the “dust” to settle a bit.

And there is a lot of dust to settle, isn’t there? Regardless of whether we are grieving or rejoicing over the election results, we sense that life as we’ve known it will never be quite the same again. Though some may believe that’s a good change, others are not only concerned but fearful, while still others are actually mad and even questioning why God seemed to ignore the many hours and days (even weeks and months, in some cases!) of prayer and fasting offered up by so many.

Though I can assure you that God did not ignore the prayers of His people, and I offer no specific answers or opinions to any of you on any side of this spectrum, I will confidently say this: JESUS CHRIST IS THE SAME YESTERDAY, TODAY, AND FOREVER. He has not changed, and He is greater than any election that will ever rock your world.

Is God pleased at the outcome of Tuesday’s election, or is He angry about it? Rather than answer that question, I will declare with certainty: He is not surprised! If you prayed for God’s will to be done, then know that your prayers were answered. The Scriptures are clear that God places leaders in positions of power, and He removes them—for His reasons, not ours. And, beloved, He does not make mistakes.

So let your own personal dust settle, but please don’t interpret that to mean we should compromise in our personal walk with the Lord, regardless of what takes place around us, particularly within the government. Because Jesus Christ is still the same and His Word still calls us to pray for those “in authority” (see 1 Timothy 2:1-2), please respond by joining with believers everywhere as we pray our country through this very difficult and dangerous transition period—and then continue to pray for the new administration, even as—hopefully—we did for the present one. For that is the most important thing we faithful citizens of heaven can ever do to honor our temporal citizenship here on earth.

Macias
Copyright 2008 Kathi Macias, all rights reserved. Used by permission.
Kathi Macias is a multi-award winning writer who has authored 26 books. Her newest book “Beyond Me. Living a You-first Life in a Me-first World” (New Hope Publishers) The author can be reached at: http://www.kathimacias.com

Lingering Words

Monday, November 10th, 2008

“Come unto Me,”
The words linger
The finger no longer points
But beckons
Offering a manger for those who would feed
On the Goodness of God.
“All you who labor,”
The favor of a loving Lord
Proffered, like a dripping gourd
So all that are thirsty
May drink
In one accord.
“And I will give you rest,”
The Living Water on your lips
As sweet as honey, will eclipse
The hunt for money (the haunt of many)
As Fount of Plenty’s
Unparalyzing drenching
Restores to living
The disposed and oppressed.

RoadrunnerCopyright 2008 by Roadrunner, all rights reserved.

Used by permission.

The Purgatory of Substance Abuse

Friday, November 7th, 2008

My world had become a blend of gray reality and false-colored fantasy.

Splintered into that gray tapestry, were week long, and sometimes longer, excursions of drug abuse. I had a real talent for sliding into high-octane moments and remained there until the dope and the money ran out. When it did, I became frozen in time not knowing what to do. It felt like all the air had been sucked out of the room. I would define that period of my life as my “purgatory”.

Biblically speaking, Hades is not purgatory. We’ve learned that those who are in Hades have no possibility of entering heaven – in contrast, purgatory is believed to have an exit. After the soul is purified by the suffering of purgatory, then and only then are we allowed to enter the gates of heaven.

Purgatory can be defined as a temporary place of punishment for those who have left this world, waiting to be purified before they can move on to the next.

In medieval times, there was a belief that nobody was righteous enough to enter a heavenly world unless they had been purged of wrong doings they committed in the mortal world.

Purgatory, in theory, may last for a few years or for eternity, depending on the level of repentance one has applied; but eventually it would come to an end.

By the grace of God, for me, the purgatory of substance abuse was a temporary event – over twenty years of self-induced punishment. If I ever entered in that purgatory again, the Jackal would probably move in for the kill!

StevenCopyright 2008 by Steven White, all rights reserved.
Used by permission. http://www.authorsden.com/stevenwhite

A Frightened, Broken Child

Thursday, November 6th, 2008

“As one whom his mother comforteth, so will I comfort you; and ye shall be comforted in Jerusalem.” Isaiah 66:13 King James Version

This morning when I was shopping at Wal-Mart, I saw and heard something that brought tears to my eyes. I saw a little child about two years old running through the store screaming and crying. I don’t know if his mother abandoned him or if they just got separated. I pray with all of my heart that they only got separated. The terror in that precious little boy’s eyes broke my heart. Several of the employees took turns picking him up trying to comfort him while they looked for his mother.

As soon as someone would pick him up, he would cry louder and scream louder. He wanted his mother. Nobody else could take the place of his mother. Nobody else could comfort him like his mother could comfort him. I don’t know what happened to that little boy because my ride came and I had to leave. One thing I do know without a shadow of doubt, Jesus is taking care of him.

As I watched that little child who was heartbroken, running, screaming and crying for his mother, I immediately thought about our precious Saviour. When we are hurt and heartbroken, people can comfort us and it helps a little bit but we want Jesus. Only Jesus can rock us tenderly in His arms and kiss away our tears and take the terror from our hearts. Only Jesus can put the shattered pieces of our hearts and lives back together again. Only Jesus can restore a broken home and a broken marriage.

Someone shared with me this morning that she is going through a heartbreaking and devastating time. She told me that her husband of thirty five years had decided to leave her without any warning at all. He made her and the children leave the house and they had no place to go. She has a special needs child so it was very hard on this dear child because he does not understand why his daddy made them leave the house. One day, this man will stand before a Holy God and give an account of the way he treated his wife and children. Every one of us will one day stand before a Holy God and give an account of the way we treated our families and our loved ones. May God have mercy on us if we have abused and hurt our loved ones in any way.

If you are frightened and heartbroken today, know that our precious Saviour loves you unconditionally. He hasn’t left you. He is still with you and He will never leave you. I’m reminded of a wife who said to her husband as they were driving down the road “We don’t sit close to each other when we are in the car like we used to.” Her husband replied “I haven’t moved.”

If you will listen with your heart you will hear Jesus saying to you “I haven’t moved.” Have you moved away from Jesus? If so, ask Him to forgive you. There is no fellowship as sweet as the fellowship with our precious Saviour. Allow Him to remove the fears and the pain in your heart and replace them with His unconditional love, joy, peace, happiness and contentment.

JoanneCopyright 2008 by

Ya Gotta Have Faith

Wednesday, November 5th, 2008

This article is based on an excerpt from “The Fly and the Jackal: Addiction, Recovery and Biblical Principles”.

Keeping your eye on the end of the road rather than the hurdles.

The road of life has many obstacles and potholes. As you travel on this road, you can travel forward, or you can travel backward. And sadly, most people with addictions always travel in the wrong direction. For example, you relapse – one step backward; you fall to a sinful decision – one step backward; turmoil at home – another step backward. With so many steps back, many of us feel as if we’ll never move forward at all!

Faith is what shifts us into a forward gear. Many of us confuse faith with willpower and wishful thinking. We have a tendency to wish for things to happen, or try to will things to favor our way. And in that process, if the thing or situation doesn’t work out for us, it feels like a step backward in faith.

Faith is the disposition of the mind that gives you direction and moves you forward in life. It guides your steps, even when you are facing roadblocks and obstacles (like addiction). Faith keeps its eye on the end of the road rather than the hurdles.

StevenCopyright 2008 by Steven White, all rights reserved.
Used by permission. http://www.authorsden.com/stevenwhite

The Road

Tuesday, November 4th, 2008

Sometimes it seems the road of disarray
Trespasses through your lawn to your front door
And though you’d glad dismount from this dismay
There seems no way to get to heretofore.
The road ahead, so gloomy, seems engrossed
Cacophonous in signs and sudden turns
Alongside all the tortured and the tossed
You get a glimpse what each in darkness learns.
Pain is a portal and those who persist
Perhaps eventually rest assuaged
Though absent are chortles, day may exist
Where love’s laughter and singing are the rage.
And mayhap the Road was sent by His Hand
To take you through trials, then into His Land.

copyright 2008 by Roadrunner, all rights reserved

There is Always Hope

Monday, November 3rd, 2008

This article is based on an excerpt from Steven White’s book The Fly and the Jackal: Addiction, Recovery and Biblical Principles.

Although hope cannot be touched or held in one’s hand, it can be embraced with the heart and carried with you always.

Hope, simply put, is a desire accompanied by expectation of or belief in fulfillment. As alcoholics and addicts, with all of our vices, with all of our shortcomings, with all of our flaws are below our normal selves at this point in our lives. We must fight to secure our minds, our bodies, our spirits and beliefs to keep hope alive

Something to think about…

A story taken from Greek Mythology reminds us that all is not lost when facing adversity of insurmountable odds. Sisyphus, according to ancient Greek myth, had argued with the gods for reasons which escape me. He had been condemned to spend the rest of his eternity pushing a large monstrous heavy rock up to the top of a hill, only to have it roll back down to the bottom just as he was reaching the summit. Do you think Sisyphus was happy? He thought so because he knew in advance that the rock would never reach its destination, that he would always be forced to carry it so far and then watch it backslide, that there was no hope, he had gained his salvation; by knowing and accepting his fate, he became superior to it. I suppose, in a twisted kind of way, he was content. But would you like to be Sisyphus, even for a day? – I didn’t think so. There is always hope.

StevenCopyright 2008 by Steven White, all rights reserved.
Used by permission. http://www.authorsden.com/stevenwhite