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Your Guide to Living a Victorious Life

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Volume 15, Number 3 www.changingtimes.info

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T h e Vo i c e o f t h e C h r i s t i a n C o m m u n i t y "In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths (Proverbs:3:6)

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God is Looking for Living Mirrors in Which Men Could See the Glory of Christ Reflected Stephen shows us what we should be to His glory. Stephen saw an open heaven and a glorified Man on the throne whose glory was mirrored in him to all who stood nearby. "But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up steadfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God and said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God" (Acts 7:55-56). Stephen represents what a true Christian is supposed to be: one who is full of the Holy Ghost with eyes fixed on the Man in glory. He is one who mirrors that glory in such a way that all who see it will be amazed and filled with wonder. He is one with a steady gaze fixed on Christ, always looking up to Him, fully occupied with a glorified Savior. Look at the hopeless condition Stephen found himself in. He was surrounded by religious madness, superstition, prejudice, and jealousy. The angry crowd pressed in on him, wild-eyed and bloodthirsty. Death

loomed just ahead of him. What impossible circumstances. But looking up into heaven he beheld his Lord in glory, and suddenly his rejection here on earth meant nothing to him. Now he was above it all, as seeing Him who was invisible. One glimpse of the Lord's glory one vision of His precious holiness and Stephen could no longer be hurt. The stones, the angry cursing, all was harmless to him now because of the joy set before him. One glimpse of Christ's glory places you above all your circumstances. Keeping your eyes on Christ, consciously reaching out to Him every waking hour provides peace and serenity as nothing else can. Stephen caught the rays of the glorified Man in heaven and reflected them to a Christ-rejecting society. He, "with open face beheld as in a glass the glory of the Lord, and was changed into the same image from glory to glory, as by the Lord the Spirit...” (2 Cor. 3:18). How true that we become what we behold. The proper translation should read, "We all, with open

From the Editor face mirroring the glory, are changed! The idea is that the Christian reflects, like a mirror, the glory on which he gazes continually. It is we who are "in the glass" - a mirror - looking on Christ, the object of our affection and becoming like Him in the process of beholding. Is it possible to catch such a vision of the glorified Man in heaven that it will place us above all our circumstances and troubles? Stephen proved it possible - so much so that while being above it all, he prayed for those who were killing him. His murderers had to look on a face that truly reflected what Stephen had seen of Christ. We all have the privilege of claiming the fullness of the Holy Spirit and becoming so riveted on Christ that we can live above everything thrown in our pathway by the enemy. The direct result of being totally occupied with Christ is a practical outworking of His nature in us. We are not just to talk about His glory, but we are to reflect it. There is nothing in our lives worthy of the attention and respect of

others. Only in reflecting the life of Christ can we influence the world for Him. Flesh, when reflected to the world, is a minister’s death. Christ reflected through us is a minister’s life. J.N. Darby wrote, "A Christian is a person upon whose heart the Spirit of God has engraved Christ, just as truly as God wrote and engraved the Law upon the tables of stone; so that the world may read Christ in the man, as an Israelite might read the Law on the stones. "It is the Holy Ghost taking of the things of Christ, and revealing them to the soul, that is the power of present practical conformity to Christ. I delight in Christ, I feast upon Christ, I love Christ. It is the very model and forming of my soul according to Christ, by the Holy Ghost - this His revelation of Christ. I not only get to love the glory, it is Christ Himself that I love; Christ, that I admire; Christ, that I care for; Christ, whose flesh I eat, and whose blood I drink See LIVING MIRRORS on Page 39

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The Path that Leads to Life "I guide you in the way of wisdom and lead you along straight paths. When you walk, your steps will not be hampered; when you run, you will not stumble." (Proverbs 4:11-12) God never teaches unwisely; He teaches in the way of wisdom. There is not a word in the Bible which, if followed, would lead one in any wrong or foolish way. The best human friends may err in judgment, and may advise us wrongly. Human wisdom is short-sighted. Good people may be guided by personal interest or by prejudice, and with the truest love and the best intentions, may counsel things which are not wise. Bad advice has wrecked many lives. But God never errs. His counsel is never mistaken, never unwise. No one was ever wrecked by His pilotage. We may always be entirely sure that if we take the way marked out for us in the Bible—that it will lead us in the right path. In fact, the promise is definitely made, "When you walk, your steps will not be hampered; when you run, you will not stumble." The figure is of a path growing so narrow that one cannot walk in it with comfort. Sin's paths seem broad at first, and those who enter them boast of liberty. They walk among the flowers, and their hearts are filled with pleasure. But these paths, as they go on, grow narrow, and lead into ways that are narrow, rough, and hard. Everyone knows how the sinner finds his way beset with all kinds of difficulties and dangers. The bright opening of a wrong life—very soon narrows into darkness and trouble. There is a story of a narrowing cell which was used in medieval days. When the prisoner was first put into it, it was wide and airy, with mirrored walls, brilliant and beautiful. But each day the walls drew a little closer together. Hidden machinery always in motion caused the slow but continued contraction of the cell walls. By-and-by the prisoner became conscious of what was going on—but he was powerless to interfere. Slowly but surely the cell became smaller and smaller until at last the prisoner was crushed in its fatal embrace. So it is that sin's steps are straightened. But the path of the just is not straightened. It grows wider and smoother as it goes on. His life enlarges. He becomes more and more free. Right doing never leads into entanglements. It may not always bring one into easy paths; the way of duty is often times hard

and costly; it is not flower-strewn. The godly life is one of self-sacrifice and self-eroded. Jesus found it so Himself — His path led Him at last to Calvary. But there is a vast difference between the hardness and roughness of such a road as Jesus trod—and that which the sinner chooses. He who does God's will may find thorns and steep climbing, and his feet may be pierced with nails—but ever the light shines where he walks, and he has the peace of God in his heart. Wisdom's "ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace." But those who find the ways of wisdom pleasant must not be content with a half-hearted choice of wisdom; they must take fast hold of instruction; they must keep her, knowing that she is their life. The picture of the Wise Man is that of a man wrecked in the water. There is a plank floating near him. If he will seize this and cling to it, it will keep him from sinking. He must take fast hold of it, and not let go, for it is his very life, his only hope. We are in the sea of life. God sends the lifeboats of divine teaching out over the waves to rescue us. If we lay hold upon them we shall get safely home. But if we do not—we shall perish. In a special way, those who have become entangled in bad habits are like shipwrecked men in the waves, and their only hope is in seizing the divine words of life which are sent out to rescue them. This is set down as a temperance lesson. The only refuge for one, who has been mastered by strong drink, is found in receiving Christ and His gospel. He should seize the divine word, as the word of hope and the word of life. He should cling to it; he should keep it, and not let it go. Those who would remain in the path of life must have no part with the ways which are vile. They must never enter into the path of the wicked; they must avoid it, pass it by. The only safe way is entire avoidance of the way of sin. Too many young men have the feeling that they must try sin for themselves. It has a fascination for them. They do not mean to go very far on its paths—but they want to have a little experience of it. They will not go into the shame and darkness in which so many have lost their souls; they will only step through the gate and walk about awhile among the flowers, and have a taste of the pleasures. Many young men talk See THE PATH on Page 39


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Men

Leaving a Godly Legacy By Nancy Leigh DeMoss A good workman knows that it takes time to build a home that will last for decades. He skillfully lays the groundwork and refuses to cut corners as he pieces together a solid frame. In the same way, we need to build a spiritual foundation in the next generation. In (Psalm 127), God's Word gives us three word pictures that help us know how to build families that have a heart for God. We are to be workmen, watchmen, and warriors. The goal of all three of these roles is that we will leave a legacy of godliness to our children, our grandchildren and generations to come. I once had the privilege of building a home. I knew nothing about building so I contracted a local builder. He came highly recommended, and he turned out to be a wonderful builder, a perfectionist who took everything seriously and saw with his experienced eyes things that I couldn't see. Some phases went by quickly, with progress almost hour-by-hour, and certainly day-by-day. More tedious parts of the process were much less exciting, but the builder knew that even these slow parts were important. It was exciting to stand back at the end of the process, to look at this beautiful home that God had provided with the help of so many capable workmen, and say, “Mission accomplished!” Now that home is a place where I can live, and where others can be ministered to and blessed. As we read (Psalm 127), we realize that the “workman” in view is not simply building a physical house. He's building a home, a heritage—a godly family line that will take the heart and ways and faith of God into the next generation. That kind of building is more demanding, exacting and, sometimes, exasperating than building a physical house. There's so much more at stake, and we can't afford to not do well. We want to build lives, homes, churches, and a culture that will reflect God's glory long after we are gone. We want to leave behind a model of godliness that people will choose to embrace in the next generation.

Watchmen and Warriors There's another word picture used in this passage--that of a watchman. The Scripture says, “Unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman stays awake in vain” (127:1). We have here a picture of a sentinel or guard, someone who's been assigned and has accepted the responsibility of standing guard over a city. He can't go to sleep on his shift; he's got to stay alert and awake. He needs discernment to recognize when an enemy is coming. We have been given the assignment of being protectors, looking out over the city that God has entrusted to us. The third picture in this passage is of a warrior: “Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one's youth” (127:4). The picture here is of a battlefield, and our sons and daughters are ammunition. They are arrows in battle, and God intends that we release and send them out into the culture. Those arrows have to be prepared—carefully shaped and formed. They have to be shot in the right direction, toward the appropriate target. Our effectiveness as warriors, in many senses, determines the effectiveness of those arrows. If they're not shaped correctly, or if they're sent in the wrong direction, they're not going to fulfill their purpose. The psalmist tells us that there's a house to be built, a city to be guarded, and a battle to be fought. If the workman cuts corners, if the watchman falls asleep or gets distracted while he's on his shift, or if the warrior fails to show up for battle, we're going to have problems. Lives can actually be endangered. These are strategic, vital roles. When you think about your family, it's not just a matter of “Will my kids make it?” or “Will we have a good family?” or “Will we have an intact home?” There's a much bigger picture here. Building His Kingdom God is building His kingdom, and we are workmen with Him; we are watchmen with Him; we are warriors with Him. The purpose of God for our families, homes, and relationships is that, through our See GODLY LEGACY on Page

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Table of Contents From the Editor

3

Men

5

Women

8

Children

11

Seniors

13

Marriage

17

Education

19

Health

21

Financial

23

Feature Article

25

Personal Revival

27

The Christian Journey

29

The Cross

31

Guiding Light

32

The Transformed Life

33

The Triumphant Christian

34

From The Pulpit

36

Community Spotlight

37

They will receive the Lord’s blessing and have a right relationship with God their Savior. – Psalm 24:5

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Taking Wise Counsel By Tony Dungy I Don’t Know Everything There have been enough people in my life through the years who have made that painfully clear to me. Therefore, I must be secure enough to say, “I don’t know.” In fact, I really need to be secure enough to say, “I have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about.” “I don’t know” is always a good answer. Especially if it is true. “I don’t know—could you please enlighten me?” is often an even better answer. This is why it is important to listen to the wise counsel of others. There will always be someone who knows more than you do, which is good. I strongly encourage you to find these people and take them to lunch. We can learn a lot from people who know more than we do. That’s one of the things I really admired about my dad. He talked to everyone—or I should say he listened to everyone. Most people described him as quiet, but that’s because in most conversations, he listened much more than he talked. He really felt he could learn things from other people. To me, this is the flip side of mentoring. When you are mentoring, you are intentionally reaching out to help someone behind you on the path of life. But when you are seeking counsel, you are looking for someone who is already ahead of you, someone you can learn from. Being open to learning—to being mentored—is necessary for growth, but is difficult for someone to master. Too often, it’s a matter of ego or pride, which has a way of hindering our growth and development. Don’t Be a Know-It-All We all know people who lead you to believe that they know everything about everything. When I was in college, somebody said, “If after three weeks of class you don’t know who the class jerk is, then it’s you.” Make sure that you don’t become that person who thinks he has all the answers and isn’t open to counsel of others. I’ve found that this attitude is often a defense mechanism, masking feelings of insecurity or fear that you’ll be exposed for your lack of knowledge.

A good coaching staff is made up of people who are willing to listen to others. If I had all the answers, there would be no point in surrounding myself with the bright, creative coaches—and I’m sure the team ownership would be pleased with all the money they would save in salaries. The truth is, though, that we all need to surround ourselves with the very best, smartest, and most trustworthy people we can find. And then we need to turn them loose to do their jobs and offer the input necessary to make us the best we can be. As a coaching staff, we met every Monday to watch film and determine which things we could improve on as a team, then we watched our opponent’s film. Next, we came up with the ideas to use our strengths most effectively that week in a game plan against our opposition. I learned a lot in those times together. There’s no need for a staff, however, if I’ve already made up my mind about what the team should do and am not willing to listen to other ideas. Don’t Resist Change or the Counsel of Others We all know people who resist change or feel threatened if someone else comes up with an appropriate plan. This kind of person acts as if no idea is a good idea unless it’s his idea. Don’t be like that. Be open to taking counsel. After all, Proverbs tells us that “plans succeed through good counsel; don’t go to war [or play a football game!] without wise advice.” Instead, surround yourself with the best people you can find and then empower them to do their jobs. Set the vision for the course you want to take. Recognizing how significant their differing skills and abilities are to the mission of the cause, team, or organization, and allow them to use those gifts and abilities to get you there. Let them know how important their contributions are to the group’s successes. Seek their input, listen to them, decide on the direction, and then go there together. Promise Keepers · 5600 S Quebec St # 200D · Greenwood Village, CO 80111-2204 · USA >


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GODLY LEGACY Continued from Page 5 little part of building, we are contributing to a much larger building of the kingdom of God. It's through this means that we leave a legacy of godliness for the next generation. If you lose sight of that vision, you're going to get weary in welldoing. Lift your eyes upward and say, “What's the bigger picture here? What is God up to?” Our children are a sacred stew-

ardship from the Lord. One day we will give account to God for the spiritual condition of the next generation. That does not diminish their responsibility, but we, as adult believers, will one day stand before God and give account for how we built, watched over the city, and fought the battle on behalf of the next generation. © Revive Our Hearts. Written by Nancy Leigh DeMoss. Used with permission. www.ReviveOurHearts.com. >

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But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved." (Ephesians 2:4-5) (NIV). Do you ever feel like the ping pong ball in a heated match bouncing between feeling like a good mom to a bad mom? I volunteer to keep the class guinea pig over spring break much to my daughter's delight. After all, we have a hamster we adore so we're highly qualified...GOOD MOM! Two weeks before spring break our pet hamster has an accident and makes an early exit from this world. I get a letter from the principal informing me after hearing about our unfortunate hamster situation, we are unfit class guinea pig babysitters... BAD MOM! I delight the teacher by showing up on time to read to the class... GOOD MOM! That same day I get an e-mail from a teacher listing three parents who haven't turned in permission slips and I'm on the list for all the world to see... BAD MOM! I make sure my kids pack something healthy for lunch... GOOD MOM! The schedule falls apart and I feed them sugary cereal for dinner... BAD MOM! I so desperately want to be a good mom. And sometimes I feel like I am, when life is clicking along with good attitudes, healthy hamsters, turned in permission slips, and a pot roast for dinner. But let's be honest. The days where everything turns out right and there's a pot roast on the table are sometimes few and far between. And I find myself feeling like a failure. Have you ever been there? The other day I was processing these things with my friend, Renee, when a strange theme seemed to arise. I just started laughing. I told Renee that many of my days tell the same story... I was on the verge of a breakdown and then I spent some time with Jesus and He made things better. Renee quipped back, "Well, isn't

that where most of us live?" Not that we're on the edge of a breakdown, but we live in a place of utter dependence on God. I know I live in constant need of His love, encouragement, wisdom, perspective, strength, patience and grace. Anything I do right as a mom is because of my constant dialogs with God. I've learned to talk with Him in honest plain language and say things like, "Hey God, I feel like a bad mom because I snapped at my kids. But my circumstances don't define me, right? You do. So, I'm receiving Your grace and letting go of those feelings pulling me down. Please help me." I must remember the truth of today's promise in (Ephesians 2:45), "But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved." God's grace is always willing to step in. Not that it excuses me from being more patient, organized or responsible. But it reminds me, "Lysa, you are doing better than you think you are. My love for you is great! Stop bouncing from feeling good to bad to good to bad. In the good times, rejoice and thank Me. In the not so good times, call out to Me quickly." With God we're never a bad mom. We might be having a bad moment... or two... or 17. But a few bad moments do not define us. God's grace is there to cover us. Teach us. And even in the middle of a bad moment, interrupt us, redirect us and change me. Forgiveness is there. Love is there. A second chance is there. And another one after that. You are a good mom, my friend... even if, like me, you've had a few bad moments... you are the exact mom God knew these children needed. Let's live in that truth today. And who cares if we are labeled unfit to watch the class guinea pig? As I stepped back from the situation I realized that saved us from some undue stress anyhow. Smiles. Dear Lord, I know that only You can fill me. I am thankful Your See BAD MOMENTS on Page 10


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grace is always there to cover me, especially on my tough mom days. Help me to stop bouncing from feeling good to bad. Teach me, redirect me and change me today. In Jesus' Name. Amen. Related Resources: If you're having one of those "I feel like a bad mom" moments, read Lysa's blog today. It will be one you print off and save! And if you'd like to make progress in transforming the mom inside you, consider getting a copy of Lysa's book, Am I Messing Up My Kids? When you purchase resources through Proverbs 31 Ministries, purchase supports the many areas of hope-giving ministry we provide at no cost. Therefore, we are extremely grateful for each and

every purchase you make with us. Thank you! Reflect and Respond: With God I'm never a bad mom. I might be having a bad moment... or two... or seventeen. But a few bad moments do not define me as a bad mom. God's grace is there to cover me. Teach me. And even in the middle of a bad moment, interrupt me, redirect me and change me. Power Verse: (Colossians 3:15), "Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful." (NIV) © 2017 All rights reserved. Proverbs 31 Ministries • 616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road • Matthews, NC 28105 • www.Proverbs31.org >

FINDING HOPE Continued from Page 9 We find Him again and again. We find the One who longs to lead us out of captivity to our doubts into a place of freedom and hope. I know this is true because I have walked it, wrestled with it, resisted it and finally surrendered to it. God's love is not only unfailing, it redeems and restores. His Truth cuts to the core of our struggles, bringing purpose to our pain,

redemption from our past and hope for our future! Lord, heal my hurts and give me hope as I learn to trust the plans You have for me. I'm coming to You and seeking You with all my heart today. Please set me free from my doubts and lead me into a place of confident hope. In Jesus' Name, Amen. Proverbs 31 Ministries >

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Discipline and the StrongWilled Child By Charles F. Stanley Recently, a young mother wrote to me for advice on disciplining her son. She said, “I have a very strong-willed and determined one-year-old boy. I want to raise him to serve and obey God. Would you explain what it means to discipline him without breaking his spirit?” It’s an excellent question—one that many parents struggle to answer. As a mom or dad, you are called to discipline your children in a godly manner. In fact, the failure to do so is an act of disobedience on your part. Because of this, many parents experience a great deal of stress, wondering if they are either too harsh or too permissive. (Proverbs 3:12) says, “Whom the Lord loves He reproves, even as a father corrects the son in whom he delights.” But what does this really mean?

First, we must distinguish between a child’s actions and his spirit, which are two very different things. A child’s spirit, or personhood, is the identity hidden deep within his heart and mind—his inner life. A child’s actions comprise what he does and how he responds to different situations. Understanding this, we must realize the goal of all discipline must be to temper a child’s self-will and halt destructive patterns of behavior. The aim is never to harm his spirit, which might cause feelings of unworthiness or that he is unlovable. Therefore, I want to give you some examples of how to correct your children in a way that will build up and protect their personhood. 1. Before addressing a child, ask yourself: “Why am I disciplining him? Is it because of what he did or does my anger stem from

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you’re addressing the issue not out of anger, but out of love and with their best interest in mind. 4. If you want your children to listen to you, always keep your promises. When you don’t stand by your word, it’s both confusing and frustrating. Without being consistent as a parent, they won’t know whether you’re serious or if what you say is empty of meaning. 5. Share your regret for having to reprimand them. Say, “You know I don’t like disciplining you, but I do so because I want you to learn how to obey God and enjoys all of See STRONG-WILLED on Page 26

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Homework and Responsibility By Heather Trent Beers When a letter arrived from my daughter's middle school, I immediately began to worry. "I'm nervous," I confided to my husband, Dennis. "We got this today." Dennis scanned the letter. "Why is the school sending information in June about a sixth-grade bug project due in September?" "So the kids can get started now, I guess," I said. "I'm afraid Rebekah will procrastinate." "She probably will. And?" "What if she doesn't get it done?" "Then she learns a great lesson about time management, responsibility and consequences. Seems like a good deal to me." Dennis grinned. "Are you suggesting we let her fail?" "Better she fail by her own effort — or lack of it — than to succeed by our nagging. We've taught her how to manage her time and how to break a project down into manageable pieces. Let's give her a shot at this." I frowned. "I still think she should start sooner rather than later." "This is more serious than I thought," Dennis mused. "We don't have one problem. We have two." "Two?" I raised an eyebrow. Dennis continued. "Problem No. 1: Rebekah is a regular kid who would rather have fun than work. Problem No. 2: Rebekah will not grow out of problem No. 1 if we don't let her try some things on her own." A difficult start Saturday over breakfast, I told Rebekah about her project. "You can either collect bugs or take pictures." "I'd like to take pictures," Rebekah said. "Great. You can get some neat pictures in Texas at the family reunion." "OK. Can I play with Aubree?" "Sure. Why don't you take the digital camera?" "Mom. It's June. My project isn't due until September." "I know, but if you use your time wisely now . . . " Dennis cleared his throat, giving me his "remember-our-conversation" look. I sighed. "Yes, you can play with Aubree." Rebekah bolted from her chair. Letting go was going to be harder than I thought. Alone in my room, I prayed, "Father, I don't want my emotional stability tied to a sixth-grader's bug

project!" I turned to my Bible and read (Isaiah 40:11), which reminded me that He gently leads those with young. I felt a tinge of conviction. I knew I needed to trust God as He led me through this parenting challenge. Next, I flipped to (Philippians 1:6). It assured me that God would finish the good work He began in me. And Rebekah, too, Lord? I closed my Bible and took a deep breath. "I get it, Lord. I'll cut the nagging." Progress? Rebekah needed a grand total of 30 bug pictures. At our July reunion, she netted seven. In August, a sixthgrade mom invited the class to gather bugs or take pictures from her massive garden. Rebekah snapped seven photos of bugs — and 13 of herself and her friends jumping in midair. She thought the day was a huge success. I nervously checked the calendar; she still needed 16 bugs. Time was rushing past us like water over Niagara Falls. I bit my lip. School started. Over the next several days, Rebekah studied, finished her homework and even told me, "My project is due in two weeks!" Looming deadline But on Saturday morning, two days before her project was due, Rebekah was still only half done. She woke up and announced, "I want to have fun all day!" I breathed deeply, pouring another cup of coffee. Dennis put his arm around my shoulders. "It's hard, but you're doing great." Several times that day I fought the urge to nag. I made frequent trips to my Bible to remind myself of God's goodness. The night before the long-dreaded deadline, Rebekah finished her project. She took the rest of her photos, created her PowerPoint presentation and turned it in on time. If I had insisted on nagging her, I would never have known she was capable of completing this project on her own. She earned my respect. As for me, my emotional stability is tied more to the Lord and less to my kids' school projects. I'm far from perfect, though. I have to hit the Book again for a test I've got coming next week. You see, Rebekah has a book report due in four days. © 1997–2017 Focus on the Family >


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Concerning the Elderly By Judith Johnson Kypta While out and about, the other day, I struck up a conversation with an elderly lady. She appeared to be in her Eighty's and used a cane for support, while walking. She told me her name was Betty, then began talking as though she had a mountain of words "bottled up" inside, and felt glad that she may have found someone who might "listen" as she spilled them out! I was very surprised when she said she had been a "Writer" of short stories for many years, and writing columns for a magazine publisher. Betty went on to tell me about restaurants she had previously owned and operated, located near our Pittsburgh Airport. I was enlightened further, as she continued. Betty explained to me, her current activities, and said she was a volunteer "Secretary" at her church. I wouldn't have guessed, as she spoke . . . from her appearance that she had done any of these things. Betty spoke at a steady pace, offering bits of interesting information, about her past. It seemed almost as if she was reinforcing herself as she spoke. She was remembering that she had been a very active person in her community and was trying to continue in the same vein. Betty told me of her family. She had three children who were very successful in their own right. Betty proudly mentioned her daughter who had dated a very famous singer, and how she and her husband had been invited, along with their daughter, to this singer's palatial home. I was given all the details regarding the meeting of the Mother, Dad and agent of this famous person! I noticed her demeanor as she talked; I saw things that a person might miss, if they were not looking. I saw the gleam in Betty's eye, and the way she sat up straight. I noticed the warm smile that lit her face. She was so appreciative in the fact, that I was taking the time to listen to what she was saying. You could tell that her thoughts were drifting to another place, another time. Perhaps she was remembering a time of her youth, and back to the days when her children were young. It could have been too, that Betty was thinking on the joy that her grandchildren brought into her and her husband's lives, along with all of the wonderful memories she cherished. Then I realized once again, how much this

person loved life and had lived a good productive one! Betty looked every bit of eighty something and the years had certainly taken their toll on her body. Inside though, in her heart and mind, she was not that old lady that she presented herself to the world as. Inside, she didn't gage her memories by age . . . when she felt her heart swell with remembering things of her youth, and I'm sure she felt pride for her family and perhaps, all of the accomplishments throughout her long life. I believe what Betty is seeking in the winter of her life, is the consideration that is owed to her or any elder. They might not be too active, in today's sense of the word; yet, they have contributed much, to this world in their lifetime and should receive their "just desserts!" The very thing that "God" has placed on my heart is this: How many times were we guilty of shrugging off an elderly person? Thinking they were too slow, or maybe, they didn't have anything Important to say, or perhaps they didn't understand or whatever else comes to one's mind when finding themselves, face to face with the elderly. Have you taken notice? When a younger person accompanies an elderly person, people will address the younger person. It's as though the elder person didn't have any sense of understanding at all, or perhaps . . . couldn't hear or speak! If we give it some thought, I am sure we might remember Incident's where we could have, and should have acted differently. Could we have been helpful, polite or more caring toward an elderly person? My wish and daily prayer is that we realize that these same "elders" were the backbone of this country that we have grown up in. It was their ideas and hard work that have brought us to where we are today. Each one of them, I believe, had a dream or has a story to tell, or maybe they have accomplished something that we can learn from. My thought is this, if we would take a minute from our busy lives, lend an ear and take an interest in those stories, dreams, and accomplishments . . . A lot of wisdom would be gleaned from them! My hope is that this article brings to light, the knowledge that elderly people want our companionship,

Seniors love, understanding and most of all, Copyright Judith Johnson Kypta our "Utmost Respect!" In return, ©2017 FaithWriters.com. All Rights we will gain much from their wis- Reserved > dom and practical insight.

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14 SUMMER 2017

Granny's Work Was Done By Julia May She was pale, lifeless and smelled of death as I entered the room. A mere shell of the Granny I had always known and loved. She lay unmoving, in the hospital bed hospice brought to my Mama’s home just a few weeks earlier. Her once strong, hardworking body was ravaged with cancer. Taking ragged breaths ever so often, the nurse said it wouldn’t be long now. For the past two weeks she was unconscious and kept on pain medication. We had known for a couple months that Granny was dying, but that didn’t make it any easier. The end was very near now. My Granny was the purest, most giving, and loving person I had ever known. In all my life, I had never once heard her raise her voice or say anything unkind about anyone. She was one person I could always depend on; for encouragement, love and truth, even when the truth hurt. She had a gentle way of leading me to do the right thing, in every situation. She was truly a blessed, virtuous woman that Proverbs speaks about. She had finally been coaxed into coming to live with my Mother about a month after Grandad passed on, eight years earlier. Only, if Mama agreed that she would help with housework and pay her own way. She wasn’t proud, she just didn’t want to burden anyone. I remember Grandad telling stories about how she would “give folks the shirt off her back” if they needed it. They raised five children during the great depression. They lived in a three room “shotgun” house in the country just a few yards from the railroad track. As a child she and Grandad would take me out on the front porch where we would count the cars every time a train came through. Those were the simple days. We’d have an ice cold glass of sweet tea in a mason jar and a homemade biscuit with some of her canned jelly stuffed inside…..mmmm. My Grandparents always had stories to tell. My favorite was about the hobo’s who would come to their door asking for food during the depression years. They rode the rails back in those days looking for work, for food, just looking to survive. Grandad said Granny always

gave them something to eat and a scripture to take with them as they went on their way. “Doing the Lord’s work” he’d say, while lovingly patting her leg. “Oh Jack, stop that” she admonished humbly, her cheeks turning red. She never had much in worldly possessions but it didn‘t matter to her. If she had only one piece of bread left in the house, she’d give it away to the needy. I just couldn’t imagine going to my Mother’s house now and her not being there anymore. But as much as I hated to see her go now, I knew she was going to heaven to live in eternity with Jesus. There would be no more pain…...no more cancer there. The hospice nurse said she’d been unconscious all day. But when I came in the room I noticed she was starting to get a little restless, like she was trying to wake up. I walked slowly to her bedside and held her soft fragile hand “It’s alright, Granny. Your work here is done. Jesus is waiting for you. You can go home now.” I smoothed a wisp of snow white hair off her forehead. She stirred, opening her eyes slightly, looking right at me. She heard me and tried to smile. Then, her gaze turned upward. She didn’t say anything but I knew from the look in her eyes, she was seeing something I couldn‘t yet see. She was looking at heaven, at her Savior coming to take her home. Suddenly, all the pain etched in her face disappeared and she was radiant again, for one last moment in time. With a tiny squeeze of my hand, she took her last breath....and was gone. It was almost like she was waiting for someone to tell her it was ok to go, that we would be alright when she passed on to glory. And we were, with God’s grace. In that final moment of her death, I felt the sweetest, most overwhelming aura of peace settle in me as I watched my Granny’s soul leave her body. It was indescribable, but very real. Granny’s work was done, but her legacy lives on, in me. ©2017 FaithWriters.com. All Rights Reserved >


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The Importance of Reading to Our Children

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By Lori Charles-Roberts The day was cool; a breeze came in through the screen door next to my parents' big, fluffy bed; It was mid-day and nap time for me. As a young child, I never resisted nap time because I knew that I got to listen to my mother read to me. My favorite book was from a set of books my parents bought when they started having children. This particular book was one of a set of red and cream hard-backed books that included encyclopedias and dictionaries. My two favorites were a book of children poems and a book of fairy tales. Both had beautiful illustrations. As I snuggled next to my mother and snuggled under my blanket, I was able to let my mind go anywhere it wanted to go; from walking through the forest where Snow White lived, to a fairy glade where mystical things happened. That special time shared with my mother was where my love of books and my love of words, and and affinity to dream magnificent dreams, grew. Between the now worn out pages of those wonderful

books that I loved so much, new worlds and possibilities were opened to me. I'm so glad my mother saw the importance of story time, as it gave to my life so much and, from what I know now that I have a little boy, I know that it was a special time for my mother as well... Reading to my little boy is one of my favorite occupations. Although he's now long past taking naps, he and I both look forward to snuggling under the covers at night and opening the pages to new worlds and adventures. Yes, reading to a child builds the vocabulary and improves the speech, but it affords much more than that. It conveys to a child that you care...that you think them important enough to have that special time with them...It says "let me share with you" and they will never forget the sharing... Most importantly, reading can awaken dreams for a child. Not wrought as they sleep, but dreams for their future. A book about trains could inspire an engineer. A book about nature could inspire an envi-

ronmentalist....and reading, in and of itself, could inspire a writer or a journalist... A child's mind is a broad and fertile vista. How many things we plant, for good or for ill into a young mind will determine its harvest, and the bonding of parent and child, or even of grandparent and grandchild through the reading of a book, are invaluable and of much, much importance. Then, yes, the child will perhaps dream bigger dreams, but through showing them we cared enough to take time for them, it could very possibly give them the self confidence to spread their wings and then the courage to fly. ©2017 FaithWriters.com. All Rights Reserved >

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Senior Citizens and Eternal Destiny By John Clark I recently read a book giving advice and wisdom from seniors, about every area of life. When it came to one's spiritual destiny of life after death, however, many seniors had never given this subject any serious consideration, after 80, 90, or 100-plus years of living! What a shame. There was no assurance as to where they would go, or what happens after death. One of the main questions asked was, "How can anyone know?" If you are an elderly person you CAN have assurance of what to expect after your final days on earth. As a Christian and a senior myself, let me explain. First of all, there must be a trustworthy source for one's beliefs, especially concerning a subject of this nature. For me it is the Bible, the divinely inspired truth, backed up by evidence to this, down through all of history. If you have never read it, I encourage you to do so. Here is what it has to say. There is life after death but it is conditional, not automatic or universal. (II Corinthians 5:9) confidently asserts that "to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord." Then (John 14:2-3) comforts us with the words given by Christ. Before He ascended to heaven He said He was going to prepare a place for us, "and if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you to myself, that where I am there you may be also." Added to this is (I John 5:11-13). "And the witness is this, that God has given us eternal life and this life is in his Son

(Jesus). He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life. These things I have written unto you who believe in the name of the Son of God, in order that you may know that you have eternal life." Did you catch that? You must receive and accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. Then you WILL KNOW THAT YOU HAVE ETERNAL LIFE, in heaven with God. The whole issue here is not religion; it is a relationship with Christ, the only begotten Son of God and creator of the universe. Jesus was and is God in human flesh. (Romans 10:9) says "that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you shall be saved." We are not saved by works, by being religious, or by being a good person. (Ephesians 2:8-9) humbly reminds each of us. "For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not as a result of works, that no one should boast." Seniors, you do not have a lot of time left on earth. Make this decision today. Give your heart, mind, and soul to Jesus Christ. He died for YOU. You could very soon be in his presence. (II Corinthians 5:1) says, "For we know that if the earthly tent which is our house is torn down, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens." ©2017 FaithWriters.com. All Rights Reserved >

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Marriage

God's Purpose for Conflict in Marriage

These principles are taken from the article “What God Hath Joined” By Del Fehsenfeld, Jr. 1. Let me emphasize that there is no conflict too great for God to reconcile. There is no partner too immoral or wicked for God to change. You must begin to exercise faith that God is bigger than your situation, and be willing to wait for Him to work. 2. Learn to transfer your focus from your mate's failures (although he or she may be 95% wrong!) and begin to accept personal responsibility. In many discussions on difficult situations in marriage, the focus is on the “innocent party.” Often it is the presumed “innocent party” who comes for counseling. I have begun to ask these men and women, “If your mate had been married to Jesus, would she (or he) have behaved this way?” Invariably, the answer is, “No.” The realization then begins to dawn that, “Everything in my life that is not like Christ has been a contributing factor to the failure of my marriage.” I encourage these individuals to make a list of every area in their life (attitudes, values, priorities, actions, words) that is not like Jesus, and to ask God to change them, so He will then be free to change their mate. After talking with thousands of married couples, I have seldom found a loving, submissive woman with a husband who is abusive or immoral. Just as rare is a loving, committed, unselfish man with a domineering or immoral wife. Ask God to reveal to you from His Word any failures in your own attitudes, actions, or spirit. Then cooperate with Him to become all that He wants you to be. 3. You must be willing to allow God to use the pressures of your marriage to achieve eternal spiritual results in your life. God is committed to conforming us to the image of Jesus. This is a lifelong process, and one which requires many tools and much pressure (much as the purest gold is formed under intense pressure over long periods of time). God uses the adverse circumstances in which we find ourselves as opportunities to learn to respond in Christ likeness. He actually may create circumstances from which we cannot escape, so that we will

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be forced to learn what He wants to teach us. God intended for marriage to be one such binding relationship, knowing full well the inevitable conflicts that would arise because of our human selfishness. In these times of hurt and apparent failure, the most natural thing to do is to squeeze our way out of the vice in which He has placed us. As a result, we automatically forfeit the full expression of His character that He was trying to develop in us. However, if we will patiently remain in that binding relationship, He will ultimately be able to achieve His purposes in our lives. 4. If you are committed to becoming like Jesus, you must be willing to suffer in a quiet, patient spirit. Our human nature wants to find the easiest way out of painful situations. But Jesus was willing to suffer abusive, harsh, and unjust treatment so that we might be reconciled to God. In the same way, God's Word teaches that we have been called to suffer (I Peter 2:21), on behalf of others. (I Peter 2:21 3:6) emphasizes that a believer's willingness to stay in his marriage and suffer quietly may be the only means by which the other partner will eventually be healed. [Note: by “suffer quietly” we are not referring to situations of physical abuse. We believe that when physical abuse is occurring in the home, the abused spouse (or parent of children being abused) should appeal to spiritual and civil authorities who have been ordained by God for our protection.] 5. Remember that, even in the case of persistent immorality and unfaithfulness, forgiveness and reconciliation are the goal—not divorce. The Old Testament provides a beautiful illustration of this kind of love and forgiveness. The prophet Hosea married a woman and lavished gifts on her. She took the gifts and used them to buy other lovers. She became a prostitute and ended up in slavery. Though she expressed no desire to return to her husband, Hosea went into the slave market and bought her back to be See CONFLICT on Page 22

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MARRIAGE

Changing Times

Stop Divorce in Its Tracks

By Angie Lewis The state makes it very easy for couples to divorce one another just because of irreconcilable differences. "Irreconcilable differences" are words used for most divorce decrees that give justification for divorce. It's true, couples have conflicting opinions from time to time, and they may even have major conflict once in a while, but these differences do not war-rant the separation from each other according to God. Lately I have been getting more and more emails from people who are not in agreement to divorce their spouse, what can they do? Don't they have any say-so in the matter? It's unfortunate because according to the state, they don't have any sayso. A spouse can re-fuse to sign the papers, but the state has loopholes for that too, it is called the "uncontested divorce", which means, if you don't sign, the divorce proceedings will go on without you and you will then have no say-so in any of the logistical matters concerning the di-vorce. I did the research. Many Christian married folks now-a-days have worldly attitudes about what marriage is and what marriage should be; not all of them, but many of them. As Christian's we should nev-er venture out of the godly realm of authority and into society for the answers we need. The Master Designer Himself is the only One who really cares about you and your marriage. The main reason a spouse might decide to get a divorce is because they are unwilling to work on the marriage. They usually have no idea that they too might be at fault for the problems associated with the marriage. Selfishness blinds people to having a committed heart to someone else. They are really only interested in serving themselves. The problem with this kind of attitude is that putting your spouse's feelings in front of yours is what mar-riage is all about! I'm not saying that all the fault should go to the spouse who wants the divorce; it certainly takes two to tango, but which spouse is the one being selfish, the one who wants to work on the marriage and stop divorce or the spouse who doesn't want to work on the marriage and get a divorce? The only thing that will have any real impact on a spouse deciding to work on the marriage rather than get a divorce is the power of the Holy Spirit within them. Only 18 SUMMER 2017

Christ can change a bad attitude. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renew-ing of your mind. (Romans 12:2 NIV) Christian couples divorce because they are out of balance spiritually within themselves. They have been conditioned to believe, if they don't "feel" a certain way, or if their spouse sinned against the marriage, they are entitled to divorce. But that is not what God says. Divorce is ugly and vengeful, and it always hurts someone terribly. You can stop divorce in its tracks by realizing that it is out of a hardened heart that most divorces take place. I believe if couples would only slow down, and take the time to find themselves; to realize that they have a part in the disintegration of the marriage, they can together seek the proper answers they need to rectify any irreconcilable differences, and save the marriage. Don't waste your time focusing on what your spouse did or didn't do. Focus on allowing Jesus Christ to direct your spirit in the proper ways of loving yourself and others. Meditate on God's words of wisdom for your marriage daily, and watch how easy your thinking changes from the divorce mentality to choosing to work on your marriage. A husband, who unconditionally loves his wife, will not seek a divorce. And the wife who unconditionally loves her husband will not seek a divorce. It doesn't always seem fair, but when you understand how love operates through the workings of what Jesus Christ did for you, you will better understand how you can love others unconditionally. Jesus Christ loved us so much that He paid a debt he did not owe because we owed a debt we could not pay? The same analogy applies to marriage. Don't love because you want something in return; love because that is a principled aspect of who you are. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this way: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8 NIV) Angie Lewis is the author of four marriage books offering marriage tips and wisdom filled answers tackling such issues as addiction, adultery, pornography, emotions, See DIVORCE on Page 36


www.changingtimes.info

Christian Relationships: Saying No to Your Boyfriend's Sexual Advances

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By Angie Lewis Most young women "give in" to their boyfriend's sexual advances because of peer pressure and fear they will leave the relationship if they don't give in and have sex. This is precisely why young people today should NOT ALLOW their emotions to lead the relationship. Let me ask you this. If you become emotionally attached and they leave you anyway, how are you going to feel then? Isn't it better to not become too attached to someone, at least until there is a commitment? Sex between two people is not needed for a commitment to marriage and anyone who says differently is deceiving you. Believe me, there are many fish in the sea that will actually love you for who you are. There is really no need to be in fear of losing a loser. Am I being too harsh? I don't think so. God calls them heathens. Only losers beg for sex after you told them "no" fifteen times already. Only losers would disrespect your "Godly right" to remain pure until marriage. Only a loser would defraud your body with sexual advances after you told them "no"! It is God's will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control his own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the heathen, who do not know God;

and in this matter no one should wrong his brother or take advantage of him. (1 Thessalonians 4:3-6) Remember: Even if the guy says he loves you, don't give in. If a man truly loves you, he will not keep trying to arouse sexual desire within you he will not take advantage of you! What he thinks is love is only lust and desire, which never turns into a REAL commitment for marriage. Sadly if you do get married to these types, who only care about sex, they will truly believe that after several months or a year into the marriage that they are not in love with you anymore and most likely be unfaithful. That is because they have confused love with lust. Love would never intentionally harm another person. "Love is not selfseeking" (1 Corinthians 13:5) "Love always protects" (1 Corinthians 13: 7) What to Tell Your Boyfriend First off tell him you respect him and that's why you are not going to use him for sex. Let him know that you love God and you also respect your body and reserve the right to keep it pure for God and your spouse for marriage one day. Did you know that by having sexual relations before marriage the Christian would be sinning against God and defiling the Holy Spirit that lives within him or her?

Show him this scripture: "Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body." (1 Corinthians 6:18-20) The truth is dating and everything that comes with dating is NOT scriptural. That's because dating is a temptation that leads to sex. For the Christian it is always best to remain platonic friends until you get to know if they are compatible with you or not. If the relationship never has any commitment for marriage it is best to remain friends and never give your heart away that way no one gets hurt. Always be true to yourself and

tell any new friendships of the opposite sex that you are saving yourself for your spouse, honoring God with your body and are not going to have sex. This gives the losers, the ones who are only out to disrespect you, a chance to walk away from the relationship without wasting your time and causing undue heartache. No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. (1 Corinthians 10:13) © 2002-2017 Heaven Ministries. All Rights Reserved. www.heavenministries.org >

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Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him. – John 14:23

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Do Hurricanes Just Happen? By Jim Elliff Though some postulate that hurricanes are spawned merely by natural causes, this answer is one "cause" too short. The Bible teaches they are first decreed by God. The Psalmist wrote: "Whatever the Lord pleases He does, in heaven and in earth, in the seas and in all deep places. He causes the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth. He makes lightening for the rain; He brings the wind out of His treasuries" (Psalm 135:6-7). "Is it not from the mouth of the Most High that woe and well-being proceed?" asked Jeremiah in (Lamentations 3:38). A hurricane is definitely in the "woe" category. Such physical catastrophes are often called "natural evils," and they come by that misnomer honestly. What devastation! We are moved by the plight of those who have endured this kind of trouble. But can we really say God did it? Most do not want to. Yet, occasionally, even among those who assume God exercises no true sovereignty over the wills of men, there is the admission that God does control the weather. He does, that is, as long as nobody is seri-ously hurt. God might comfort during the storm and help pick up the emotional pieces after the storm, but He would never create such ruination. However, God’s own Word speaks otherwise: God is at work doing His perfect will, even during hurricane season. These spinning engines of destruction originate from Him as Ruler (first cause), through nature (second cause), all for His purposes. Though God owes us no explanation, one or all of the following possible objectives may help us under-stand "why" God decrees such fear-producing events: 1. God is recognized as powerful and not to be trifled with. God often asserted that cataclysmic events were done to display His power to men. (Exodus 9:14-16; 14:31) 2. Society is warned of the greatest calamity, eternal judgment. A physical disaster is nothing compared with eternal damnation. A hurricane is an announcement: "If you don’t repent, worse than this is coming." (Luke 13:1-5) 3. Some people are deservedly punished for their rebellion. The Bible states that "the wrath of God

5/31/2017 4:09:49 PM

is revealed [lit. is being revealed] from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men . . ." (Romans 1:18). That means now. Hurricanes are just one of the ways that might happen. (Psalm 7:11-13) 4. Some true believers are tested or disciplined and made stronger in their faith. The same storm that judges a non-believing man may be the crucible of testing and/or chastisement for a true Christian, and will toughen and purify him for the future. (James 1:2-3; Hebrews 12:5-11) 5. Believers may be taken to heaven; and some enemies of God may be removed from the earth. This is a reality that is hard to accept, but nonetheless true. The Bible says that our days are ordained by God even before one of them is lived (Psalm 139:16). He also promises that many rebellious people will face a calamitous end. (Psalm 73:18-19) 6. The godly are given an opportunity to love sacrificially. Because of the nature of the true believer, you will always find Christians among those on the scene helping to relieve the distress. (1 John 3:17; Galatians 6:10) Their love may point many to Christ. There could be more, but this will suffice to highlight the purposefulness of God in such massive displays of his power. If it is not true that God has ordained the powerful forces of nature for His own ends, then the alternative answer is that this event was only an irregularity in the interplay of warm water and thermals. And that is no comfort when you stand in the wet rubble that was once your home. I would much rather know that God has a purpose in mind when it costs me so dearly. I can learn from that, and even thank Him for His perfect, though sometimes shocking, will. God knows what He’s about. "He does according to His will in the army of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth. No one can restrain His hand or say to Him, ‘What have You done?’" (Daniel 4:35). Copyright © 2017 Jim Elliff Christian Communicators Worldwide, Inc. >


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8 Tips to Improve Your Health

Health

By Dr. Don Colbert Being healthy doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. The little things you do over a lifetime add up, and they have a h u g e impact on your health. Much of your health depends on consistency and common sense. Here are some small and simple investments that produce large returns when it comes to your health and well-being. -Wash Your Hands before eating and after being in public places or around sickness. Your hands are a primary route by which bacteria enters your body. The CDC recom-mends using soap and water for 20 seconds (about the time it takes to sing “Happy Birthday”). And remember, anti-bacterial soap is not required. -Floss Daily. Research continues to show a strong link between gum disease and heart disease. Some studies suggest problems with your mouth and gums are as predictive of heart diseases as is high cholesterol. Your teeth have 5 surfaces – brushing only cleans 2 of them. Flossing is the best way to clean the other 3 surfaces. -Consume Less Sugar. Numerous studies associate sugar intake with obesity, heart disease, diabetes and even dementia. As sugar consumption continues to increase, it’s important for you to resist that trend. Read the labels and cut back on foods (especially fast foods) which contain large amounts of sugar and salt. When baking, reduce the sugar by 1/4 or 1/3. You probably won’t notice the difference. -Open Your Windows. Studies by the EPA indicate that indoor pollution is often 2 to 5 times higher than outdoor pollution. Always take advantage of days when the outside temperature is pleasant by opening the windows in your home or vehicle. It will improve your health and save you money.

-Chew Your Food More Thoroughly. Not only will this significantly increase the amount of nutrition your body absorbs from the food you eat, it can also help you lose weight. How many times should you chew? Depending on the food, 20-30 chews is ideal – the more the better. Consider laying your fork down between each bite. -Leave Your Shoes at the Door. Imagine all the places you walk everyday and how much bacteria is on the bottom of your shoes. Why would you want to spread those germs throughout your home? This is one cause of the high level of indoor pollution discussed above. In many cultures around the world, not removing your shoes before entering a home is unthinkable. -Stop and Breathe Deeply. I say it often, but taking time out several times each day to take a few slow, deep breaths will lower your stress and improve your overall health. Unmanaged stress is linked to numerous chronic diseases. Becoming quiet, breathing deeply and listening to God is a good way to be healthier and happier. -Be Honest. Studies show people who constantly lie and exaggerate experience more stress and more physical ailments than those who tend to tell the truth. Lie detectors work because people who lie experience stress. The stress causes immediate physical symptoms picked up by the lie detector. No wonder the Bible says so much about truth. This entry was posted in Health Tips by Dr. Don Colbert. Dr. Don Colbert is a graduate of Oral Roberts School of Medicine and shares his years of experience and research in nutritional medicine in all of his work. He is a national speaker, bestselling author and host of a national talk show titled Your Health Matters. ©2017 Dr. Don Colbert, MD PA www. drcolbert.com >

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HEALTH

Changing Times

7 Common Traits of Centenarians By Dr Don Colbert Blue Zones” are geographic and demographic areas of the world where people are most likely to live to be 100 or more. Dan Buettner, National Geographic author and explorer, was the first to identify 5 of these areas. They are the Barbagia region of Sardinia; Ikaria, Greece; Nicoya Peninsula, Costa; Loma Linda, California and Okinawa, Japan. It’s important to realize there is no one particular food or activity that characterizes these populations, but rather an overall lifestyle. We would do well to learn from these groups since studies show that genes account for only about 25% of longevity. The rest is lifestyle. Here are some of the traits that “Blue Zone” populations all have

in common. - Family first: Family is put ahead of other concerns. Blue Zone populations tend to keep aging parents and grandparents nearby or in their home, which appears to lower disease and mortality rates of children in the home, also. They commit to a life partner, which can add up to 3 years to a person’s life. They also spend lots of time with their children. - Plant-based diet: The majority of food consumed is derived from plants. Beans, including fava, black, soy and lentils, are the cornerstone of most centenarian diets. Fish is also included, but other meats are consumed only about 5 times per month and in small quantity. These groups eat their smallest meal in the late afternoon or early

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evening and then they don’t eat any more the rest of the day. They seldom overeat. - Constant physical activity: The world’s longest living people don’t lift weights, run marathons or join gyms. Instead, they grow gardens and do without many modern con-veniences for house and yard work. Living in a place where you're encouraged to move all day long is far better than sitting all day long and then exercising for half an hour. - Social engagement: “Blue Zone” people of all ages are socially active and integrated into their communities. They spend on average 6 hours per day having face to face inter-action with others. Most “Blue Zone” centenarians belong to a religious community. Oth-er research suggests attending religious services four times per month may reduce mortality up to 20%. - Sense of purpose: The Okinawans call it “Ikigai” and the Nicoyans call it “plan de vida;” for both it translates to “why I wake up in the morning.” If you can articu-

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late your sense of purpose, it can add about eight extra years to your life. - Red Wine in moderation: People in all Blue Zones (except Adventists) drink alcohol moderately and regularly (1-2 glasses per day with friends and/or with food). - No Smoking: It should not be surprising that these populations rarely smoke. This entry was posted in Health Tips by Dr. Don Colbert © 2017 Dr. Don Colbert, MD PA www.drcolbert.com > CONFLICT Continued from Page 17 his wife once again. This tender picture reveals the loving heart of God toward us. And it is a powerful reminder that we are to be partners with God in the business of redemption—not breaking up marriages because of offenses. © Taken from "What God Hath Joined" by Del Fehsenfeld, Jr. Used with permission. w w w. R e v i v e O u r H e a r t s . c o m Info@ReviveOurHearts >

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Seven Principles of Finance for the Believer

Financial

By Jim and Pam Elliff One of the most recognizable differences in the believer and the world he lives in is his unusual relationship to money and possessions. However, even serious believers sometimes balk at the seeming extremities in the teaching and lifestyle of Christ and the leaders of the New Testament church. Can we duplicate this New Testament lifestyle in our day? This outline provides the diligent believer with some key principles preparing him/her for radical, other-worldly financial behavior. Alone, or if married, with your spouse, take some time for reading the Scripture texts and thinking through the obedient thing to do in each area. Then write out what you find. There is only one thing for you to do after this meditation … obey! The Principle of Non-Attachment I will purchase or receive nothing that I cannot give away.And He said to them, “Beware and be on your guard against every form of greed; for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions. (Lk. 12:15; Lk. 12:32-34; 16:13-25; 1 Jn. 2:15-17) What must be done to obey these verses? The Principle of Liberty I will owe no man anything but to love him.Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. (Rom. 13:8; Prov. 22:7) What must be done to obey these verses? The Principle of Liberality I will constantly seek to give away money and possessions for God’s glory. For I testify that according to their ability, and beyond their ability they gave of their own accord, begging us with much entreaty for the favor of participation in the support of the saints, and this, not as we had expected, but they first gave themselves to the Lord and to us by the will of God.(2 Cor. 8:3-5; 2 Cor. 9:7; Luke 6:38) What must be done to obey these verses? The Principle of Recall I will keep accurate records of God’s dealings with me financially in order to show others that God answers prayer and provides for His

own. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. (Mt. 5:16; Prov. 27:23-27) What must be done to obey these verses? The Principle of Security I will save and invest only if God is leading, with the understanding that I will give it all away at His slightest instruction. Do not lay up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and dust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But lay up your treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in or steal. (Matt. 6:19-20; Prov. 28:8; 1 Tim. 6:9-11) What must be done to obey these verses? The Principle of Compassion I will not pray for someone’s needs financially unless I am willing to be the instrument God uses to meet that need if He should desire. We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. But whoever has the world’s goods, and beholds his brother in need and closes his heart against him how does the love of God abide in him? Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth. (1 Jn. 3:1618 Jam. 2:15-17; Lk. 6:30, 38; II Cor. 9:6-15; Prov. 28:27) What must be done to obey these verses? The Principle of Contentment I will be content to live on whatever God chooses to provide, whether little or much. Not that I speak from want; for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. (Phil. 4:11-13; Prov. 30:7-9; Matt. 6:2434; 1 Tim. 6:8) What must be done to obey these verses? Copyright © 2017 Jim and Pam Elliff • Christian Communicators Worldwide, Inc. >

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Dear Dave, My husband was recently laid off, and he has $229,000 in a 401(k). He has been told that he should roll it into a hybrid annuity. Is this a good idea? —Durnae Dear Durnae, Absolutely not! It sounds to me like he’s been talking to an insurance agent instead of an investment advisor. There’s no reason to put a 401(k) into an annuity. Annuities are there to protect money, as it grows, from taxes. Well, guess what? The 401(k) is already protecting it from taxes. I would roll it into a traditional IRA in a series of growth stock mutual funds. You’ll have half the fees, the advisor won’t make anywhere near the commission he’d make on an annuity, and you’ll get much better results in the end. Yeah, I definitely wouldn’t go the annuity route. I don’t have a single annuity, and I’ve got a lot of investments. One of the reasons so many “advisors” push annuities is because they wind up with bigger commissions. Annuities aren’t evil or anything, but they’re definitely not the proper product for you in this situation. Get away from the guy who gave you this advice, and find a good financial advisor — not an insurance guy — with the heart of a teacher. You need to talk to someone who’s interested in helping you two plan for your future, not theirs! —Dave

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Dear Dave, I’m 37 years old, married with two great kids, and I was just diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. I’m trying to plan for the future, and I was wondering if you have any suggestions for work at home or self-employment ideas for people with disabilities. —Chris Dear Chris, I’m really sorry to hear you’re facing this. You’re a smart, brave young woman to be looking ahead and making plans for the coming years. I suggest you read a book by Dan Miller called 48 Days to Creative Income. Dan is a friend of mine, and he also wrote a popular book titled 48 Days to the Work You Love. The issue you’re talking about is very close to his heart, and I think his books will be a great help to you. There’s also a book by Richard Bolles. It’s called Job Hunting for the So-Called Handicapped or People Who Have Disabilities, and it’s full of ideas to help you work around the issues you’ll be facing. There are lots of people out there — well-known, highly successful folks — who have disabilities and still make good money and have rewarding lives using the principles found in these books. Another great piece of news is it sounds like you have a wonderful support system around you. God bless you all, Chris. I’m praying for you. —Dave * Dave Ramsey is CEO of Ramsey Solutions. He has authored seven best-selling books, including The Total Money Makeover. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 12 million listeners each week on 575 radio stations and multiple digital platforms. Follow Dave on the web at daveramsey.com and on Twitter at @DaveRamsey.


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Power! Power! By James Smith We greatly need spiritual power in the present day. We abound in means of grace, in opportunities to do good, in incentives to holiness; but we are very feeble! Who that hears us pray, sees us work, or studies our characters—but must see that we are weak, and, though Christians, very much like other men! We need to be endued with the Spirit of power from on high. May the Lord impart his powerful Spirit to us in greater measure than we have ever received or enjoyed it before; that our faith may not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God. The wisdom of men can do little for us in the world in which we are engaged, and, if our faith rests on that, we shall surely fail. What is it we need? We need to have our corruptions subdued, our sanctification deepened, and our comforts increased! We need to be holier and happier! We need to be more like Jesus and his early followers! We need to be just what His precepts require us to be. But this we shall never be—unless we receive the Spirit of love, power, and of a sound mind, in greater measure than we ever have yet. Then, what is it we are longing for, and aiming at, as to others? Is it not to see sinners converted and brought to Jesus? To see those who are impressed and seeking the Lord, thoroughly decided for Him? And to see all who profess the Savior's name, devoted to the Lord's service, active in the Lord's ways, and working heartily in the Lord's vineyard? In a word—to be ourselves model Christians, and to see all around us growing up into Christ, and laboring to glorify his name? Oh for glowing zeal, active benevolence, and self-denying devotion to the Lord's service! But to bring about such a state of things—to whom shall we look? In vain we look to man, for the power is not in him. He may be learned, zealous, eloquent, ardent, and devout—but the work is beyond his power! The power of God and the power of God alone—are able to accomplish it. Oh what a mercy, that with God, all things are possible; that He is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us! Man cannot; God can.

We are feeble; our God is omnipotent. We are but instruments; the Lord is the great agent in accomplishing all that is good and great. We are commanded to attempt it, and His strength is made perfect in our weakness. Without Christ we can do nothing; but we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. "Power belongs unto God." But then He has promised to give power to the faint, to strengthen us with all might by His Spirit in the inner man. His power was exerted in His apostles, who became remarkable for holiness and usefulness; and that same power has been given to all in measure, who have ardently desired it, and earnestly sought it. If we have it not, it is because we do not set our hearts on it, and diligently seek it, or because we seek it for some impure and improper purpose. For God was never more willing to give—than He is now! The promise was never truer— than it is now. The throne of grace was never more ac-cessible—than at present. And surely the world and the church never more needed the power of God than now. It was possessed in fullness once, it has been displayed gloriously in times past; and as Jesus, the giver of power, is the same today, in our need of it, as He was yesterday, when His church possessed and exercised it—then the reason for the deficiency must be sought in ourselves, why we have it not. Let us then realize our lack of power, and the responsibility that rests upon us on this subject. Let us not blame others—but ourselves. Let us not make God's sovereignty the scape-goat to carry away our sins of neglect, indifference, and lack of faith and fervor in prayer; but let us humble ourselves before God for our selfishness, our love of ease, our conformity to the world, and our worldly minded churches. Let us also take off our dependence from every creature and from everything in man—and fix it on the power of God alone. Then we shall not draw back because of difficulties, tremble before our foes, or pronounce anything necessary to be impossible. Let us believe the promise of the Savior to his waiting, watching, praying disciples, "You

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FEATURE ARTICLE POWER! POWER! Continued from Page 25 shall receive power when the Holy Spirit is come upon you." Precious Savior, He went to heaven to procure the Holy Spirit for His church, and promised to send that Divine Comforter in His stead to abide with, work in, and work by His disciples—and he kept His word! That word still stands good, that He will give the Holy Spirit unto those who ask Him. Let us then believe His promise, and pray with downright earnestness and perseverance for the power of God. It is no use our complaining, finding fault with others, or wishing for a different state of things in the world or the church, without

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this. This is the great remedy for all our evils, and this remedy may be obtained—but not in the way many people take; no, we must deeply feel our need, disapprove our condition, realize our guilt, confess our sins, and, in dependence on divine grace— make up our minds to give the Lord no rest until the Spirit be poured upon us from on high. God is willing, but are we? God is ready—but not to sanction our coldness, indifference, and worldliness. He will give—but we have no right to expect until we feel our need, believe the promise, and plead it in faith with perseverance. God may deny us—if we are not earnest; but we will not be put off—but show that we are sincere and earnest and He will open the windows of heaven and pour out a full blessing upon us. "Therefore, will the Lord wait that He may be gracious unto you, therefore will he be exalted that he may show mercy unto you." O Lord, give power to pray, power to believe, power to persevere, and then give the power we need to work with success! GRACE GEMS! A Treasury of Ageless Sovereign Grace Devotional Writings Our Purpose To humble the pride of man, to exalt the grace of God in salvation and to promote real holiness in heart and life. ©GraceGems.org 2017 >

STRONG-WILLED Continued from Page 11 His blessings.” 6. Never strike your children on the face, and never use your hand. 7. Focus comments on your children’s actions, instead of demeaning them or questioning their personhood. The child who is wounded in her spirit eventually views herself as inherently unworthy, and this results in feelings of helplessness and hopelessness. 8. After you have disciplined your kids, give them assurance of your love and that you want the very best for their lives. 9. Listen. Pay attention to what your kids say. When you do not respectfully consider their ideas, opinions, or requests you communicate that they aren’t important. 10. Likewise, do not compare your children to other people. Doing so sends the message that, somehow, God did not bless or equip them as abundantly as He did others. 11. Avoid comments that contain phrases such as “you never” or “you always.” These expressions suggest that one’s character is fixed without the possibility of improvement. In reality, there’s no limit to

what the Lord can do in and through a person’s life. 12. When you know your children have done their best, commend them—even if their grades didn’t meet your expectations. This is a crucial point, because if you criticize your kids’ performance, you will inadvertently communicate that their best isn’t good enough. Inevitably, this will lead to feelings of inadequacy and despondency. 13. Express your love often through hugs, caring words, and compliments. If a child grows up without this, he will seek approval and acceptance elsewhere. We were all born with free will and the inclination to sin against God. In other words, we all need discipline so we can learn how to bring our desires in line with the Lord’s plan and purpose for our lives. By following these simple principles—correcting your children out of love rather than anger—you are not only teaching them to submit to God’s authority, you are also preparing their spirits to receive His love and blessings. And that won’t only make you a great parent but one that glorifies the Lord. © 2017 oChristian.com. All Rights Reserved >

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What Is Good and Acceptable and Perfect Thoughts on Romans 12:2

Personal Revival

By John Piper When we were focusing attention on (Romans 12:2) you may recall that I did not say much about the last part of the verse. Verse 2 says, “ Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” I said almost nothing about those last three words: good, acceptable, perfect. So I ask now, What do they tell us? First, they are not telling us that there are three different things God wills: good things, acceptable things, and perfect things. He is not saying that some things that God wills are good (and not acceptable to God), and other things are acceptable to God (and not good). In other words, “good” is one way of describing the will of God, and “acceptable” is an-other way of

describing it. When Paul insists that “good” acts are the will of God, he is making sure that we do not treat Christianity as a mystical religion with no concrete moral demands. He is saying: there is good and evil in the world. God wills the good. Do good things, and you will be doing the will of God. Don’t just have mystical experiences and call yourself a Christian. Ask: What is good? And do it. That is the Christian way of walking in the will of God. However, that’s risky talk. It sounds moralistic. That is, lots of “moral” people try to do what’s “good,” but are not Christian. There are moral crusades of all kinds that are not grounded in God, let alone Christ. So Paul goes further and adds “acceptable.” He means “acceptable to God.” The same word is used in verse 1 where acceptable is explicitly re-lated to God. (“Present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God.”) Therefore, what Paul is doing

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with this word is defining the “good” as good in relation to God. “By euareston (acceptable) he underlines the fact that the goodness which is in question is no anthropocentric goodness but a goodness determined by the revelation of God’s will, a matter of obedience to God’s commandments” (C.E.B. Cranfield, Romans, vol. 2, p. 610). In other words, it will not do to just say: “the good” is God’s will. Rather we must say: the good is defined by God’s will. That is, the good is what is acceptable— to God. That’s what Paul says. Then comes the final word which defines the will of God in (Romans 12:2), namely, the word, “perfect” (teleion). Could it be anything else? Well, you may have to keep in mind the distinction I made in the sermon from August 22, 2004 (What Is the Will of God and How Do We Know It?) between the sovereign will of God and the revealed will of God. I said that the New Testament speaks, on the one hand, of God’s will as

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everything that comes to pass under God’s sovereignty, including sinful acts like the murder of Jesus (Acts 4:27-28) and the persecution of Christians (1 Peter 3:17; 4:19). But, on the other hand, it also speaks of the will of God as what God commands, which never includes sin! For example, “This is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality” (1 Thessalonians 4:3). What God commands is his will. And God never commands us to sin. When Paul says that we should be transformed in the renewal of our minds so that we can discern and do what is the will of God (Romans 12:2), he means the revealed will of God and its proper applications to life. He does not mean: try to figure out God’s sovereign plan and do it. That is God’s secret. We are to do his revealed will and leave the sovereign runSee WHAT IS GOOD on Page 30

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PERSONAL REVIVAL

Changing Times

The Call to Forsake All By Michael Carl "As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the sea? For they were fishermen And Jesus said to them, 'Follow me and I will make you fish for people.' And immediately they left their nets and followed him."

What did it mean when Jesus strolled the shore of Lake Galilee and called those men to serve Him without reservation? Well, in one way or another, it meant a complete surrender to Jesus. When they heard Him say, "'If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take

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up their cross and follow me'" (Mark 8.34), they eventually learned that He meant it. For most of them, it meant dying for the Lord. We all know from Foxe's Book of Martyrs that all of the original Apostles, second edition (with Matthias), except John went to a martyr's death. Thomas, not realizing the full impact of what he was saying, said it correctly when he said in John chapter eleven, "'Let's go back to Judea so we may die with Him.'" Yet, we have to ask today, what does it mean when Jesus says, "'Follow me and I will make you fish for people'"? Is there any real meaning behind Jesus' own words, "'If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow Me'" for us today? Do we really believe this or has Christ's own words simply become a romanticized exercise in a formulaic religious contemplation for today's 21st Century North American Christian? In truth, we have to come to terms with the reality that if we

don't really believe He means what He says in these Mark passages, then in fact we are denying the truth and efficacy of God's Word. As one of my teachers along the way said, "We're professing believers; but in fact, we're practical atheists." The good professor was blunt, but brutally true. When it comes to obeying the Word of God, we don't do too well with the passages requiring personal sacrifice. Folks, this must change. If we're ever to realize the depth and beauty of a vital relationship with our Lord, we have to let go and be willing to trust Him with ALL of His Words. Are we willing to do that? If not, then our practical doubts are going to rob us of the very meat and meaning for which we deeply long. Let us resolve this day that we're not going to be spectators; we're going to take a step from the shore, wade in and fully become "a fisherman". http://www.revivalschool.com >

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The Christian Journey

We are Made for More By Pastor Doug Gilford Have you ever stopped to think about the human heart? According to experts, the average heart pumps over one thousand gallons of blood through our bodies every day. That is enough blood to fill thirteen super tankers or fifty-five million gallons in a lifetime. When we stop and consider the sheer volume of blood being pushed through our sixty thousand miles of blood vessels, from a ten-ounce heart, even the most critical skeptic must stop and say, “Wow!” I believe that is how David must have felt when he scribed the passage in Psalms, “I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well.” (Psalms 139:14) David, under divine inspiration, described the uniqueness and complexity of our bodies that modern medicine would only discover thousands of years later. It was Galen, in

the second century AD, who wrote about vessels and veins: “Throughout the body the animal arteries are mingled with veins and veins with arteries, and both veins and arteries are mingled with nerves and the nerves with these.” How uniquely and complexly our bodies have been designed that almost a dozen major and vital systems harmoniously operate as one unit, just for one breath to take place. So yes, David. We are “fearfully and wonderfully” made. If God took the time to uniquely form and give life to us, certainly one can conclude that we are made for more than we are currently experiencing in life. Did David receive from God something that he alone knew? No. In fact, all throughout Scripture, there are references that seem to indicate that we are made for so much more than working nine to five, paying bills, building a family, watching them move out and get married, retiring, and dying. In (Genesis 1:26), God says,

“Let Us make man in Our image and in Our likeness…” The first reason I believe we were made for more is: We were made in the image of God. Do you think that God, when He decided to make mankind, thought, “I am going to make some mediocre, worthless piece of junk?” No. He looks over at the beauty of His Son and at the Splendor of His Spirit and says, “I am going to make man after OUR image and likeness.” God takes the dirt from the ground and forms a man. Then what? He breathes on the dirt and it comes alive. Have you ever been sick because you were near someone else who was sick? What happened? Excuse my wording, but you got what they got. So, when God, the Creator of the universe, took mere dirt and breathed life into it, we got what He got. Therefore, it is no wonder why David wrote

that we are “fearfully and wonderfully made”, because the same likeness of God the father, God the Son, and God the Spirit was placed in the human form. The second reason you and I were made for more is found in (Jeremiah 1:5), where God says to Jeremiah, “Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you...” We were made for more because we were known before we were born. God tells Jeremiah that he was known before he was born, and God tells him that he was “ordained to be a prophet to the nations.” God not only knows us before birth, but gives us a life purpose before we become the apple of our mother's eye. If God knows us before we are born, why do we sometimes think He has forgotten us now? The presSee MADE FOR MORE on Page 30

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MADE FOR MORE Continued from Page 29 sures and anxieties of life sometimes overcome us and steal away from us the truth of God’s Word. Remember the parable of the Sower that Jesus taught us? He compares the Word of God to seeds that were planted on three different types of soil. One could grow because the soil was fertile. One could not grow because of the stones. And one could only grow for a short time before getting choked out and dying. Jesus explains why this happened, "The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful.” (Matthew 13:18-23) Look at that word “unfruitful.” It is a picture of many of our loved ones, and, if we’re honest, might be a picture of ourselves. But we were made for more than to settle for unfruitfulness. Why do we settle for mediocrity and hopelessness instead of pressing for excellence and significance? Well, let’s face it. Over the last hundred years or so, we have taught our

children that evolution is the cause of civilization. Basically, we are rearranged pond scum. What kind of purpose does pond scum really have? When we go back to the roots of our country —the Bible—we find the roots of our very existence. We find a reason for living. There is another reason we are made for more: we are valuable to God. In (John 3:16), “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes on Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” It doesn't make sense that God would give His life for us, let alone His Son's life. But does it not speak to the value He gives us? You and I are valuable to God. Our relationship with the Father is valuable to God. How valuable? Valuable enough to give His Only Son. Do not seek someone to affirm your value. God already has! You and I were made for more, so let’s start living like it. Doug Gilford, Senior Pastor, Cornerstone Church -23051 Hwy 1088, Mandeville, La 70448. 985624-8652 or email doug@ilovecornerstone.com >

WHAT IS GOOD Continued from Page 27 ning of the universe to him. So let’s go back to the word “perfect.” We should discern and do what is the will of God: what is good and acceptable and perfect. What’s Paul saying? He’s saying: strive to know and do the good, namely what is pleasing to God, namely, what is perfect. It can-not be otherwise. God will not command imperfection. His goal for us is perfection. Indeed, from the beginning to the end of the Bible his demand from us is perfection. When God said to Adam, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die” (Genesis 2:1617), he did not mean: “if you eat a little bit of it, you won’t die,” or: “if you eat it only once, you won’t die,” or: “if you have a good excuse, you won’t die.” He meant: perfectly obey this command, or you die. Jesus said, “You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Matthew 5:48). And (Romans 12:2) says, Be trans-

formed so that you can do what is perfect. Is this not why Paul puts all of (Romans 12) under the banner of mercy: “I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God. . . .” All of (Romans 12) is based on the first 11 chapters of Romans. And those chapters are about God’s mercy in Christ. This is what saves us in spite of our imperfection. And (Romans 6 and 7) make it plain that this imperfection continues into our Christian lives. So the command of verse 2 that we do what is “good, acceptable, and perfect” throws us back again on the “mercies of God” in Christ. And this mercy sends us back again to pursue perfect obedience. No one can stand at the cross receiving mercy and be casual about the will of God. The cross impels us with great gratitude and hope and joy to cut off our hands, if we must, to follow Christ. So let us live at the cross for merciful blessing, and let us carry the cross in merciful obedience. ©2017 Desiring God Foundation. Website: www.desiringGod. org. Email: mail@desiringGod. org. Toll Free: 888-346-4700 >

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THE CROSS

Taking Up the Cross By Andrew Murray When the Lord told his disciples that they must take up the cross to follow him, they could have little understanding of his meaning. He wished to rouse them to earnest thought and so prepare them for the time when they should see him carrying his cross. From the Jordan, where he had presented himself to be baptized and reckoned among sinners, onward, he carried the cross always in his heart. That is to say, he was always conscious that the sentence of death, because of sin, rested on him, and that he must bear it to the uttermost. As the disciples thought on this and wondered what he meant by it, one thing only helped them - it was the thought of a man who was sentenced to death, and carried his cross to the appointed place. Christ had said at the same time: 'He that loses his life for my sake shall find it' (Matt. 10.39). He taught them that they must hate their own life. Their nature was so sinful that

nothing less than death could meet their need; it deserved nothing less than death. So the conviction gradually dawned upon them that the taking up of the cross meant: 'I am to feel that my life is under sentence of death, and that under the consciousness of this sentence, I must constantly surrender my flesh, my sinful nature, to death.' So they were slowly prepared to see later on that the cross which Christ had carried was the one power to deliver truly from sin, and that they must first receive from him the true cross spirit. They must learn from him what self-humiliation in their weakness and unworthiness was to mean; what the obedience was which crucified their own will in all things, in the greatest as well as in the least; what the self-denial was which did not seek to please the flesh or the world. 'Take thy cross and follow me' (see Matt. 16.24; Mark 8.34; 10.21; Luke 9.23) - that was the word with which Jesus pre-pared his disciples for the great thought that his mind and disposition might become theirs, that his cross might in very deed become their own. Crucified with Christ

The lesson which the Lord wished his disciples to learn from his statement concerning the taking up of the cross and the losing of their life finds its expression in the words of Paul, after Christ had died on the cross and had been exalted on high, and the Spirit had been poured out. Paul says: 'I am crucified with Christ'; 'God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world' (Gal. 2.20; 6.14). He wished every believer to live so as to prove that he was crucified with Christ. He wished us to understand that the Christ who comes to dwell in our hearts is the crucified Christ, who will himself, through his life, impart to us the true mind of the cross. He tells us that 'our old man is crucified with him' (Rom. 6.6). Yea, more, that 'they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh' (Gal. 5.24). When they received by faith the crucified Christ, they gave over the flesh to the death sentence which was executed to the full on Calvary. Paul says 'we have been planted together in the likeness of his death' (Rom. 6.5), and that there-

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fore we must reckon that we are dead to sin in Christ Jesus. These words of the Holy Spirit, through Paul, teach us that we must abide constantly in the fellowship of the cross, in fellowship with the crucified and living Lord Jesus. It is the soul that lives ever under the cover and shelter and deliverance of the cross that alone can expect constantly to glory in Christ Jesus and in his abiding nearness. The fellowship of the cross There are many who place their hope for salvation in the redemption of the cross who understands little about the fellowship of the cross. They rely on what the cross has purchased for them, on for-giveness of sin and peace with God; but they can often live for a length of time without fellowship with the Lord himself. They do not know what it means to strive every day after heart communion with the crucified Lord as he is seen in heaven -'A Lamb in the midst of the throne'. Oh, that this vision might exercise its spiritual See THE CROSS on Page 39

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By David Jeremiah Thomas Cranmer’s mission was to translate the pages of Scripture into the life of the church. Cranmer (1489-1556) was made the Archbishop of Canterbury in 1533, after the Reformation began in 1517. When Catholic Mary Tudor (“Bloody Mary”) ascended the throne of England in 1553, she persecuted Protestant reformers— including Cranmer, who was forced to recant his views and confess allegiance to the pope. Later Bloody Mary decreed that Cranmer should be burned at the stake after one final public statement of allegiance to the Church of Rome. It was that statement— whether to make it or not—which Cranmer agonized over early on the morning of March 21, 1556. What Does It Take? What does it take for believers like you and me to stand firm for the Word of God in our homes, our workplaces, our communities, and especially in our churches? Regardless of the century in which we live, it takes the same thing: an unswerving belief that the Bible is the Word of God; that to deny the Bible is the same as denying God himself. One central passage in the New Testament summarizes why we should be “people of the Book”— (2 Timothy 3:16-17): “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is prof-itable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” First, the Bible is inspired by God. The Bible is God speaking directly to you. People of the Book like Tyndale, Wycliffe, and Cranmer suffered for the Book because they be-lieved it to be the inspired Word of God. Second, the Bible is profitable. There are five areas of life which will be made more prof-itable if we are people of the Book: • Evangelizing. Paul reminded Timothy (2 Timothy 3:15) that it was the Holy Scriptures which made him wise unto salvation through faith in Christ. If you are a Christian, you became one because of the truth contained in the Bible. If you are not

yet a Christian, reading the Bible will illumine your heart and mind so that you can understand the Gos-pel and be saved. • Education. Heresy and error in the church—in belief as well as practice—begin when Christians stray from the pure teaching of the Word of God. • Exhortation. Paul says the Bible is profitable for “reproof”— for exhorting the one who reads it to live a holy and blameless life. Paul told Timothy to rebuke those in the church who were sinning (1 Timothy 5:20). The only way we know how to live in a manner pleasing to God is to live according to the Word of God (Psalm 119:11). • Encouraging. People of the Book need to be encouraged to get back on the path of righteousness when they stray from it. • Enabling. Applying our hearts to understanding the things of God is the only way to become wise in this life (Proverbs 2:1-10). It is Jesus Christ who enables us for ministry (1 Timothy 1:12). People of the Book love the Word of God more than anything else in this world. With the living Word filling our heart and the written Word filling our mind, we become “thoroughly equipped for every good work.” A Person of the Book Ultimately Thomas Cranmer repudiated the confession of allegiance to Rome he had signed earlier, pledging to burn the hand that signed that confession first in the fire. He went on to reject the false teachings of Rome and swear his allegiance to Christ and His Word. He never finished his speech. The enraged assembly took him immediately to the stake and burned him alive. Wycliffe, Tyndale, Luther, Cranmer, and so many others—they were people of the Book! If you have never decided that the Bible is the most valuable book—your most valuable possession—would you make that decision today? Don’t let your heart or hand, your word or your will, offend when it comes to the Word of God. Be a person of the Book until Jesus comes again. This article was excerpted from Turning Points, Dr. David Jeremiah’s devotional maga-zine. Call Turning Point at 1-800-947-1993 for your complimentary copy of Turning Points. >


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The

Transformed Life

The Transforming Power of Christ By Adrian Rogers And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there: And both Jesus was called, and His disciples, to the marriage. And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith unto them, They have no wine." (John 2:1-3) The first recorded miracle Jesus performed was at a wedding. The wine had run out, and the Lord Jesus Christ, at the request of His mother, moved in to take care of the embarrassing situation. He told the servants to fill six available water pots with water. Then, He turned the water into wine — but not ordinary wine, the very best. But this was not just a miracle. It was a miracle with a message. You see, Jesus was the Messiah of Israel, but they didn't recognize Him. In (John 1:26) John the Baptist said about Jesus, "...There standeth One among you, Whom ye know not." They should have known Him, could have known Him, ought to have

known Him: but they didn't. And because they didn't know Him, they didn't understand this miracle. We'll look at three lessons from this first miracle. The Prophetic Lesson I believe there is as prophetic message dealing with the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. It looks forward to the marriage supper of the Lamb when He Himself is the heavenly Bridegroom and we are the bride, and we eat the marriage feast. This earthly wedding is but a fore gleam of what He will do for His saints throughout all the ages. The Practical Lesson There is also a practical lesson in this miracle. In (John 2:5), Jesus' mother wisely instructs the servants, "...Whatsoever He saith unto you, do it." Are you a servant of Jesus? Let me give you the same advice: do what He tells you." There is a practical lesson concerning service. There are three reasons to serve God: Serve the Lord for your good. When the ruler of the feast had

tasted the new wine, he didn't know where it came from (verse 9). But the servants knew. Obeying the Lord brings intimacy with Him. Those servants knew things that the big shots at the head table didn't know. Even the bride and the groom didn't know what the servants knew. It's amazing what you can learn if you're willing to be a servant. God reveals His secrets to His servants (see Amos 3:7). What a blessing! Serve the Lord for their gladness. The party was getting dull. The refreshments had worn out. But when the servants began to obey the Lord, everyone was blessed. When I obey God, I'll be a blessing to you. When you obey God, you'll be a blessing to me. You cannot obey God without your obedience spilling out in a blessing to all those around you. Serve the Lord for His glory. According to verse eleven, He "manifested forth His glory." When people obey the Lord Jesus Christ — when they do what Jesus tells them to do, He is glorified. When

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you obey Him, then He works in your heart and life, and the result is glory to God. The Personal Lesson Finally, there's a personal lesson concerning salvation in this miracle. I believe the Bible gives us a picture of the Lord Jesus Christ transforming and saving lives. And just as Jesus turned worthless water into sparkling wine, the Lord Jesus Christ can transform and change your life and save you today. Notice the symbolism. There were six water pots of stone (verse 6). Six is the number of a man. Stone could be more aptly translated clay. These clay pots symbolize man made of the dust of the earth. They were dry, hard, brittle, and empty. These old, hard, empty vessels were filled with water. Water is used as a symbol of the Word of God and the Spirit of God throughout the Old Testament. And when See CHRIST on Page 36

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The man who has never known a hardship, who never has had to practice self-denial or make a personal sacrifice, may be the envy of other men, whose lives have been one continued struggle. They may think that if they could have had his easy circumstances they could have made a great deal more of their life. But really their chance in life thus far has been far better than his. Manhood is made in the field of struggle and hardship, not in ways of ease and luxury. Hindrances are opportunities. Difficulty is a school for man-hood. Strength is the glory of manhood. Yet it is not easy to be strong, it is easier to be weak and to drift. It is easier for the boy in school not to work hard to get his lessons, but to let them go, and then at the last depend on some other boy to help him through. It is easier, when something happens to make you irritable, just to fly into a temper and say bitter words, than it is to keep quiet and self controlled. It is easier, when you are with other young people and they are about to do something that you know to be unworthy, just to go with them, than it is to say, "I cannot do this wickedness against God." Therefore, it is easier to be weak, than to be strong. But we know where weakness leads in the end. Nothing is impossible to young men. Doing what can't be done, is the glory of living. An-ybody can do the easy things, the things which can be done. A young man who has no higher goal than the things he knows he can do will never rise to any sublime height. What are Christians put into the world for, but to do the impossible in the strength of God? Jesus said the same that if we have faith we can move mountains, that is, do things which are impossible to human strength, because faith unites us to God, and His omnipotence works them in us and with us. God expects a great deal of those who are strong. He does not expect much of babies, of invalids, of paralytics, or of feeble minded people; but of young men who have in them vast possibilities of power. Is it manly not to use this power for God, for truth, for service? One of the most pitiful things the stars look down upon is a young man with

fine gifts, with strength, with love, with genius, able to do some noble work, yet wasting all his possibilities in some form of corrupted living. Strength is God's gift, and should be used only in worthy ways; to use it in any unworthy way, is disrespect. Young men have superb strength. It’s God's wonderful gift to them. Let them not waste it in sin, nor squander it in uselessness of any kind. Let it not wither and shrivel away, wrapped up in any napkins of non use. It is sacred, this marvelous strength which hides in our hands, in our brain, in our heart; it is part of God's own life given to us. It is Divine. It should be used only in ways which will honor God. We should not answer every call to pour out our strength, nor draw our sword in every cause. We should keep our life sacred for our Master and for the cause that is dear to Him. We are exhorted continually in the Scriptures to be strong. Christ is strong, and we are to be like Him. We need to be strong in order to stand firm and true in the midst of the fray of life, and to do our duty faithfully and worthily. But how can we be strong? We need the strength of God in our arm, to make us equal to the stress of duty and responsibility that we must meet. How can we get this strength? One way is by prayer. Prayer is linking our little life to God, when His grace will flow into our weakness, and make it God's strength. If we would be strong—we must pray! Another secret of strength is found in fellowship and companionship with Christ. Moses knew this secret, for it is said of him that "he endured, as seeing Him who is invisible." We grievously wrong ourselves, when we do not accept the help of Christ in our tasks and struggles. Even in a strong human friend, we may find inspiration and help which will make our lives mean more, stimulating us to bravery and fidelity and enabling us to be victorious. It is told of the widow of a musical composer, that whenever she See MANHOOD on Page 35


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THE TRIUMPHANT CHRISTIAN

Let This Mind Be in You By David Wilkerson “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5). In this exhortation the apostle Paul is telling the people of God, “Let the mind that is in Christ—the very thinking of Jesus—be your thinking also. His mindset is the one we all are to seek.” What does it mean to have the mind of Christ? Simply put, it means to think and act as Jesus did. It means making Christ-like decisions that determine how we are to live. It means bringing every faculty of our mind to bear on how we actually can have the mind of Christ. Every time we look into the mirror of God’s Word, we’re to ask ourselves: “Does what I see about myself reflect the nature and thinking of Christ? Am I changing from image to image, conformed to Jesus’ very likeness by every experience that God brings into my life?” According to Paul, here is the mindset of Christ. “[He] made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men” (Philippians 2:7).

Jesus made a decision while he was still in heaven. He made an agreement with the Father to lay down his heavenly glory and come to earth as a man. He was going to descend to the world as a humble servant. And he would seek to minister rather than be ministered to. For Christ, this meant saying, “I go to do your will, Father.” Indeed, Jesus determined ahead of time, “I am laying down my will in order to do yours, Father. I subjugate my will so that I may embrace yours. Everything I say and do has to come from you. I’m laying down everything to be totally dependent upon you.” In turn, the Father’s agreement with the Son was to reveal his will to him. God said to him, in essence, “My will won’t ever be hidden from you. You will always know what I am doing. You will have my mind.” When Paul states boldly, “I have the mind of Christ,” he is declaring, “I too have made myself of no reputation. Like Jesus, I have taken on the role of a servant.” And Paul asserts that the same can hold true for every believer: “We [all can] have the mind of Christ” (1 Corinthians 2:16). Copyright © 2017 by World Challenge, Inc., P.O. Box 260, Lindale, Texas 75771. >

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was going to play any of her husband's music in public, she would read over some of his old letters to her, writ-ten in their younger days. Thus, she said, his very life seemed to fill and possess her, and she was better able then to interpret his work. If we will read over Christ's words of love to us until His life enters into us, and His spirit breathes itself into our lives, then we can be brave and strong in resisting evil and doing His will. Save the Nations Ministries >

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1989

ANNIVERSARY

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Changing Times

A Man of New Principles By Thomas Brooks

36 SUMMER 2017

"If any man is in Christ, he is a new creature; old things are passed away, behold all things are become new!" (2 Corinthians 5:17) A new creature has . . . a new judgment, a new will, new affections, new thoughts, new company, new choices, new laws, new ways, new works, etc. A new creature is a changed creature throughout. The new creature includes a new light, a new sight, and a new understanding. The new creature sees sin to be the greatest evil, and Christ and holiness to be the chief good. When a man is a new creature, he has a new judgment and opinion he looks upon God as his only happiness, and Christ as his all in all, and upon the ways of God as ways of pleasantness. The new man has new cares, new requests, new desires, "Oh that my heart may be adorned with grace!" The new man is a man of new principles. If you make a serious inspection into his soul, you shall find a principle . . .of faith, of repentance, of holiness, of love, of contentment, of patience, etc. The new man experiences a new combat and conflict in his soul. "The flesh lusts against the spirit, and the spirit lusts against the flesh." He combats with all sorts of known sins whether they are great or small, inward or outward, whether they are the sins of the heart or the sins of the life. This conflict in

the new man is a daily conflict, a constant conflict. The new creature can never, the new creature will never, be at peace with sin; sin and the new creature will fight it out to the death. The new creature will never be brought into a league of friendship with sin. The new man is a man of a new life. A new life always attends a new heart. You see it in Paul, Mary Magdalene, Zaccheus, the jailor, and all the others that are upon Scripture record. The new man has new society, new company. Holy society is the only society for people with holy hearts, and in that society can no man delight, until God renews his heart by grace. The new man walks by a new rule, which is the written Word of God. This rule he sets up for all matters of faith, and for all matters of practice. Well, friends, whatever you do forget, be sure that forever you remember this that none can or shall be glorious creatures, but such as by grace are made new creatures. GRACE GEMS! A Treasury of Ageless Sovereign Grace Devotional Writings Our Purpose To humble the pride of man, to exalt the grace of God in salvation and to promote real holiness in heart and life. ©GraceGems.org 2017 >

DIVORCE Continued from Page 18

CHRIST Continued from Page 33

beliefs, forgiveness, communication and much, much more. Adultery Pandemic is Angie's latest book. Turn Your Marriage Into A Success! If you want to restore your marriage from the demoralizing effects of adultery, then look no further - this is the book for you! Your Marriage Can Be Restored! A treasure book filled with effective guidance for your marriage from forgiveness and trust to recommitting your lives to each other again. Practical and easy-to-read, this book combines the solutions and remedies your marriage needs towards recovery. This book will give you the guidance you need to discover the true secrets to a happy, lifelong marriage. © 2002-2017 Heaven Ministries. All Rights Reserved. www.heavenministries.org >

the vessels were filled and then touched by the omnipotent finger of God, a transforming miracle took place. This miracle points to a greater one — the miracle of salvation. Jesus turned water into wine with a touch. But when He saved me; He had to hang on a cross. Oh what a miracle — that Jesus can transform you! The same Jesus Who turned water into wine can transform your home, your life, your family, and your future. He is still in the miracle-working business, and His business is the business of transformation © 2017 Love Worth Finding Ministries, P.O. Box 38300, Memphis, TN 38183, www.lwf.org >


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COMMUNITY SPOTLIGHT

Lion King Ministries Lion King Ministries was birthed from God’s spoken prophetic word. We are to live (Mark 16:20) by birthing churches and ministries into the dark and dying areas, both here and throughout the world. We are to support ministers and churches through physical and spiritual provisions provided by God’s economy. We are to be a safe haven for God’s missionaries, ministers and` laborers who seek a place of rest and renewal of their spirits, souls, and bodies. Jesus said, “suffer the little children to come unto me” thereby, God’s children are the life blood of HIS church. Through spiritual programs, we will love, feed, encourage, edify, and strengthen them through the empowerment of the Holy Spirit of God. We seek YOU, who are led, to join and support Lion King Ministries through your prayers, feet, and seeds. Each inspired facet of the Lion King Retreat was given through visions by Our Great Creator. Our purpose here is to fulfill our assignment by being obedient to each phase of His vision. We construct, build, and rebuild to satisfy His design commandment. Just as Isa-

iah in (Isaiah 6) was shown a vision by God, we have been shown a vision. Isaiah felt unqualified, so do we, but God qualified Isaiah when he answered, “HERE AM I, SEND ME”. Lion King Ministries has also answered God’s call, as Isaiah did. So we invite ALL to come into the vision of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and seek the vision for your ministry. You will leave here to fulfill God’s vision for your ministry through your obedience by saying, “HERE AM I, SEND ME” Come tour our retreat and plan your stay to get away from day to day responsibilities and bask in the peace and quiet of the wilderness. In god’s beautiful creation you will find your spiritual rejuvenation while praising him with your group in our conference center, praying at our many prayer altars, or just alone while walking our nature trails. We can accommodate men, women, youth, and pastoral retreats. We offer many outdoor activities for your fun time such as swim-ming, basketball, volleyball, kickball, soccer, and zip-lining. Find us at www.lionkingministries.org. >

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United States Coast Guard: A Multi-Mission Force The Coast Guard is one of our nation’s five military services. Our core values—honor, respect and devotion to duty, are the guiding principles used to defend and preserve the United States of America. We protect the personal safety and security of our people; the marine transportation system and infrastructure; our natural and economic resources; and the territorial integrity of our nation–from both internal and external threats, natural and man-made. We protect these interests in U.S. ports, inland waterways, along the coasts and on international waters. There are approximately 46,000 active-duty Coast Guard men and women currently serving who come from all over the country and from all walks of life. Some have boating experience, while others had never been on the water until joining the Coast Guard. If you choose to join their ranks, you may find yourself hanging from a helicopter to save a boater in the Atlantic, running down drug runners off the Florida Coast

or stopping polluters from ruining our inland lakes and waterways. In return, you will earn a competitive salary, have access to a host of benefits, receive some of the best, most sought-after training from seamanship to technology, and have the opportunity for pay raises, promotions and advancement. But more importantly, you'll be part of one of the most accomplished military services in the world. At the end of every day, you'll have the fulfillment that comes from knowing you have done an important job. If you are ready to join a dedicated group of men and women who serve our nation by protecting its waterways and coastlines, then we want to hear from you! The Coast Guard has active duty and reserve, enlisted and officer career opportunities and help pay for college! To learn more about the positions available in your area, find a recruiter at www.gocoastguard. com. >

I affirm, by the boasting in you whom I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily. – 1 Corinthians 15:31

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There are approximately 46,000 active-duty Coast Guard men and women currently serving. If you choose to join their ranks, you may find yourself hanging from a helicopter to save a boater in the Atlantic, running down drug runners off the Florida coast, or stopping polluters from ruining our inland lakes. For more information or to just chat, contact us at GoCoastGuard.com

SUMMER 2017

37


CHRISTIAN Community Referrals ATTORNEY Bono Law Firm 3801 N. Causeway Blvd., Suite 206 Metairie, LA 70002 504-835-9909 www.bonolawfirm.com AUTOMOTIVE DEALERS Bergeron Automotive 3525 Veterans Blvd., Metairie, LA 70002 504-888-2131 Honda of Covington 100 Holiday Square Blvd. Covington, LA 70433 985-892-0001 www.hondaofcovington.com Premier Automotive Group Toyota of New Orleans • 504-940-0000 Premier Nissan of Metairie • 504-455-5800 Premier Kia of Kenner • 1-866-744-5083 Ross Downing Chevrolet 600 S. Morrison Blvd. Hammond, La 70403 985-345-1285 www.rossdowningchevrolet.com AUTOMOTIVE REPAIR Zoom Tech 815 Asbury Dr., Mandeville, LA 70471 985-624-5080 www.zoomtechautomotive.com BRIDAL SPECIALTY Second Line Handkerchiefs (Backyard Printing, LLC) 1960 Surgi Drive • Mandeville, LA 985-231-7789 secondlinehandkerchiefs.com BUS CHARTERS Gaten's Adventures Unlimited "For All Your Traveling Needs" 465 Morris Road, Hammond, LA 985-345-7629 · 877-855-8572 www.gatenbuscharters.com CERTIFIED PUBLIC ACCOUNTANTS Larry Holmes Bourgeois Bennett 111 Veterans Blvd., Metairie, La 70005 504-831-4949 larryh@bb-cpa.com • www.bb-cpa.com

38 SUMMER 2017

COAST GUARD RECRUITING U. S. Coast Guard Recruiting Office 8814 Veterans Blvd., Suite 8 Metairie, LA 70003 504-472-4321 www.gocoastguard.com CHRISTIAN BOOKSTORES Gospel Book Store 91Westbank Expy Ste 410 Gretna, LA 504-362-7770 Books, Bibles, Music, Gifts, Church Supplies Open: Monday-Saturday 10:00am-6:00pm CHRISTIAN COUNSELING Solutions Family Counseling Rev. Frank W. Newfield, Sr. M.A., C/Psy., BCCC 1309 Butternut Ave., Metairie, LA 70001 504-305-4532 frank@solutions.nocoxmail.com www.solutions-familycounseling.com ESTATE PLANNING ATTORNEY Legacy Law Center Chris Kane, Attorney at Law 800 Ramon St. Mandeville, LA 985-246-3020 www.LegacyLawCenter.com FURNITURE American Factory Direct 68490 Hwy. 59 Mandeville, LA 70471 985-871-1120 www.afd-furniture.com GLASS SERVICES A-1 Glass Services, Inc. 1247 Collins Blvd. Covington Residential • Commercial • Auto Truck • Mobile Glass • Patio Shower Doors 985-892-5312 HARDWARE STORES Mid Point Feed & Seed True Value Hardware Open Mon – Sat 7:30-5:00 19744 Hwy. 40, Covington, LA 985-892-2002HURRICANE SHUTTERS COOL-VUE ALUMINUM 504-464-9194 coolvuealuminum@bellsouth.net www.coolvue.com

LONG TERM CARE FACILITY Good Samaritan Living Center 615 Hilltop Drive Franklinton, LA 70438 985-839-6706 goodsamlivingcenter.com Trinity Neurologic Rehabilitation Center 1400 Lindberg Dr., Slidell, LA 70458 985-641-4985 www.trinityneurorehab.com PHARMACY Lee Road Family Pharmacy Your Trusted Family Owned Pharmacy 19705 Hwy. 40, Covington 985-400-2595 leeroadfamilypharmacy.com POWERSPORTS Honda of Covington Powersports 1026 N. Collins Blvd. Covington, LA 70433 • 985-892-9730 www.hondaofcovingtonpowersports.com TOWING SERVICE Jenkins Towing, Inc. Ray Jenkins & Sons 24-Hour Towing Covington, LA 985-892-4038 VETERINARY VCA Causeway Animal Hospital 1315 N. Causeway Blvd. Metairie, LA 70001 504-828-2700 www.vcacausewayanimalhospital.com WELDING Lloyd’s Welding & Son, LLC 19722 Hwy. 40 Covington 70435 Office 985-892-0889 Fax 985-871-7785 WINDOW INSERT REPLACEMENTS Window Solutions by Richlyn LLC Distribution Center 70454 Ste. C Hwy. 59 Richard Weixel 985-871-8181 www.nofoggywindows.com


COMMUNITY

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LIVING MIRRORS Continued from Page 3 - what wonder if I am like Christ? The Christian thus becomes the epistle of Christ; he speaks for Christ, confesses Christ, acts for Christ. He does not want to be rich; he has riches in Christ - unsearchable riches. He does not want the pleasures of this world; he has pleasures at God's right hand forevermore. "It is not my looking at myself, but it is my looking at Christ, that is God's appointed means for my growing in the likeness of Christ" Stephen became a living mirror in which men could see the glory of Christ reflected. So should we. When the enemy comes in like a flood and troubling circumstances get us down, we need to both amaze and condemn the world around us by our sweet, restful repose in Christ. Since we see by our spiritual mind, this is accomplished by keeping our minds stayed on Christ. You won't see Jesus until you start looking for Him, and you won't find Him until you go to where He is revealed. He is fully, totally revealed in His glory in the

Holy Scriptures. It is the happy work of the Holy Spirit within us to show us from the Word who He is. "He [the Spirit] will take of Mine and show it unto you" (John 16:14). Do you daily call upon the Holy Spirit to give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ? You should. It is an awesome thing to consider reflecting Christ to a lost world in all His holiness and perfection. None of us have ever yet given forth a true and perfect reflection. What a great relief to know that we can neither mar nor improve the One whose image is reflected. He is changelessly perfect, holy and beautiful. We do not change the image - the image changes us. Each time we look into the Word and see a new ray of truth about His life, death, resurrection, and ascension we are changed by it. We become more and more like the One who is the center of our attraction. We don't change ourselves - the revelation of Christ changes us. Save the Nations Ministries >

THE PATH Continued from Page 4 about the drink habit. They do not mean to become drunkards—they scoff at the very thought. They will drink moderately, enjoying the pleasure and the stimulus—but will not let themselves be mastered. Yet such a course is always perilous. The young should learn to know the voice of strangers and never to listen to their solicitations. It is said that a friend once sent Luther the portrait of a man who was lying in wait for him to kill him. Having the picture of his enemy before him, Luther was prepared to avoid the man and thus save his own life. The Bible gives us portraits of those who seek to destroy us. We are wise if we mark well these portraits so as to know our enemies, that we may avoid them.

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SEEKING BI-LINGUAL JUNIOR ATTORNEY Reputable Westbank Hispanic Aorney seeks FT, Bi-Lingual Junior Aorney to join our team. Our firm offers a compeve package including paid holidays, sick me, paid vacaon, and a rerement fund. Prefer at least 1-year of experience in ligaon. Louisiana License Preferred. Will train the right candidate. The posion will concentrate on Family Law, Personal Injury, Immigraon, & Traffic Tickets, to name a few. Candidate MUST be fluent or highly proficient and able to read, write, and speak in English & Spanish. Please do not apply if you do not meet these crical criteria. Candidate should possess strong understanding of the daily operaons within a law firm and/or the judicial system, interviewing pracces, conflict resoluon pracces, invesgave techniques, and the ability to apply legal concepts to medical reports & documents, to name a few. Please submit cover leer, resume, & one (1) wring sample to: michelle@silvalawfirm.net

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There is no excuse for confusing the way of life and the way of death; these ways are distinctly marked. We are all told that the path of the righteous is as the shining light. The way of the wicked is as darkness. One looks toward the light; and as he goes on, the path brightens and brightens until it leads into the perfect day. The other begins in shadows, which deepen and deepen, ending at last in midnight blackness. These two paths lie before every young person. Very early in life he stands at the parting of the ways, and he must choose which way his feet will walk. Happy are they who choose the path which leads to life. Save the Nations Ministries >

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Four Programs to Choose From: • Certified Belief Therapist (CBT) • Certified Reentry Crisis Counselor (CRCC) • Licensed Belief Therapist (LBT) • Certified Youth Behavioral Advisor (CYBA) Therapon Certification is recommended for any caring Christian desiring a full-time or part-time ministry helping hurting people through the confusing maze of a wide range of recovery issues such as divorce, marriage counseling, grief, compulsive behavior, anger management, problematic thinking errors, emotional trauma, abuse, relapse prevention, and criminal recovery. The Therapon Institute conducts certification schools as well as CEU seminars. For more information, please contact us at (504) 328-2249 or www.therapon.org.

THE CROSS Continued from Page 31 power upon us, that we might really earthly surroundings? Let us experience every day that as truly as endeavor to make this plainer in our the Lamb is seen there on the throne, further meditations. so we may have the power and GRACE GEMS! A Treasury of experience of his presence here! Ageless Sovereign Grace DevotionIs it possible? Without doubt it is. al Writings Our Purpose Why did that great miracle happen, To humble the pride of man, to and why was the Holy Spirit given 810 N. Columbia Street • Suite C • Covington, LA 70433 from heaven, if it were not to make exalt the grace of God in salvation www.dicristinas.com the glorified Jesus -'the Lamb stand- and to promote real holiness in heart and life. ©GraceGems.org ing, as slain, in the midst of the 985.875.0160 Fax 985.809.2179 throne'- present with us here in our 2017 > And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, SUMMER 2017 39 you must continue to follow him. - Colossians 2:6


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Changing Times Summer 2017  

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