Surrounded by snow-covered mountains, we sped along the frozen Canadian tundra at the top speed of 20 mph. The sled dogs were yelping, the guide was shouting, and I was holding on with all my strength.One of my childhood dreams was being fulfilled.
I have always wanted to drive a dogsled across frozen snow in the dead of winter!The song of David rang in my ears on that crisp day:“For the Lord is the great God, the great King above all gods.In his hand are the depths of the earth and the mountain peaks belong to him.” (Psalm 95:3-4)
Without warning, my foot slipped off the narrow runner and my knees hit the hard surface.In a split second, all I could recall was the warning of our guide at the outset… “WHATEVER YOU DO, DON'T TURN LOOSE OF THE RAIL.”And that is all that saved me.Skinned knees, bruised ego, wet jeans, but I held on.
When you feel your life suddenly slipping toward unexpected disaster, if you remember nothing else at all in that split-second, HOLD ON TO THE ONLY THING THAT WILL SAVE YOU... and never let go of Jesus Christ, your rock and your salvation.
“It’s been said ‘time heals all wounds.’I do not agree.The wounds remain.In time, the mind, protecting its sanity, covers them with scar tissue and the pain lessens.But it is never gone.”
Does Mrs. Kennedy’s quote resonate with you?
Unless your life is insulated from all human contact, we have been hurt in our relationships – with parents, children, spouses and/or friends.
Sometimes, it is a perceived slight; sometimes, it’s very deep and deliberate.
Those are the most painful – when the closest person to us strikes with an unbelievable force.
All relationships require a certain vulnerability.When you take the risk to open yourself up, you’re bound to experience pain and hurt.
But, hear the Good News –
Prayer to Be Reckoned With
13-15 Are you hurting? Pray. Do you feel great? Sing. Are you sick? Call the church leaders together to pray and anoint you with oil in the name of the Master. Believing-prayer will heal you, and Jesus will put you on your feet. And if you've sinned, you'll be forgiven - healed inside and out – James 5:13-15 (The Message)
GospeLines Prayer:Father, I like my packages neatly wrapped with no frayed edges, pretty paper and decorative bows.
While I may occasionally find presents wrapped that way, only Your son was perfect.No one who’s touched my life, including me, comes unencumbered.
We have visions of “perfection,” but we will never find it.We can surround ourselves with material trappings and wrap ourselves up neatly according to the world’s definitions.
We are only truly perfected in You.May we be vulnerable and receptive to Your plan for our lives.
And, when we’re hurt, may we place it at Your altar and forgive those who trespass against us and ourselves.
All the way home from the grocery store last night I had a feeling that something was missing.As I sat momentarily in the darkness of my driveway it hit me.My checkbook!I reached for the flashlight and probed the beam in every place I thought it might be, but no luck.Now I was getting nervous.I hurried back to the courtesy booth at the store and asked if it had been returned.My heart began to beat more slowly when the kind lady retrieved it from behind the counter and handed it back to me.
Sometimes we get so busy with life that we don’t realize something important is missing until we are surrounded by absolute darkness and chaos.We try to pull ourselves out of the mess by using our best humanistic bootstrap philosophy but it doesn’t work.Our light isn’t bright enough to solve our own problems. It just seems to get darker and darker.Sound familiar?
What’s missing from your life?Beloved, we serve a wonderful God who wants to brighten our days and nights with his Shekinah glory!Surrender to Him and feel the warm assurance He will bring to your situation with His penetrating, healing Light!There is nothing He would rather do than to fill your life with whatever it is that you are lacking.Trust the Lord to come to your assistance in your time of trouble!Amen and amen.
Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could stop all our bad habits over night?Smokers could simply stop smoking and never feel the attraction for tobacco again.Heavy drinkers could walk away from alcohol and never desire it again.People with all sorts of addictions could simply stop.Wow!That would indeed be fantastic.However, that's not the way God designed the world.
"There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven… He has made everything beautiful in its time.He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end." (Ecclesiastes 3:1, 11)
There is a time for everything we do - a time and a process.No one changes overnight.
The children of Israel wandered in the wilderness fortyyears before they were ready to go into the Promised Land.Nebuchadnezzar was driven away from people to live with the wild animals and eat grass like the cattle for seven years before he acknowledged that the Lord is sovereign.
Jesus saw Peter and Andrew, casting a net into the sea and said, "Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men."He called them from where they were, realizing that it would take over three years to get them fully prepared.
When Paul asked, "Who are you, Lord?" Jesus answered, "I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do."He didn't wait for Paul to change; He met him where he was.
Time is required for change and change starts where we are; not where we want to be.Any journey starts at the beginning, not at the end.So, why do we frequently expect immediate change?
We speak to church members who attend once or twice a month and expect them to immediately start attending three times per week.We ask the person with a years-old cursing habit to stop all swearing immediately - and worse, we rebuke them when they slip.Members who do not contribute (financially) to the church are expected to become tithers starting next week.
This is not the way Christ would have us minister to our brothers and sisters."The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. (Galatians 5:22)"Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience." (Colossians 3:12)
Let us encourage and strengthen one another, especially now in these last days.
GospeLines Prayer:Lord God, fill us with Your Holy Spirit so that we will not judge and therefore, will not be judged.Help us not to condemn so we will not be condemned.Grant us the spirit of forgiveness so we will be forgiven.Teach us to give, so You Lord can give to us.Keep us from judging our brothers and sisters because or with the measure we use to judge them, it will be measured to us.Lord, in the name of Jesus we ask for a humble heart and a repentant spirit so that we may plant Kingdom seeds where ever we go.Amen!
“…we can face Him with confidence because we live like Jesus here in this world.”
Duke is ninety pounds of muscle, short black hair, and the smartest dog I have ever seen.He moonwalks, says his prayers, shakes hands, falls over dead upon command, walks around me three times when I say "circle the genius," catches a frisbee, plays pitch with a basketball, turns in circles when I tell him to act like a woman, etc., etc.He has a repertoire of 10 tricks and would do more but I am not smart enough to teach him.Generally, he is a very good pet, but he is a dog with a potentially aggressive nature.
Duke is half Doberman and half Pit-bull.For that reason, I am very careful to remind him that I am the leader of the pack and he is to remain submissive to me upon verbal command at all times.
Christians are prone to act in a certain way because of our teaching, training, and our faith.It is not impossible for a person to talk like a Christian, live a somewhat Christian lifestyle, even go to church occasionally and not be a born-again believer.
Inside every person is a human nature which has the potential of giving each of us a surprisingly aggressive attraction to sin.For that reason, we need to be reminded who we are and who God is.Submission to the Father is essential in all that we do.
GospeLines Prayer:"Father, I submit my will to you.Correct my tendencies toward sin and channel my desires toward right living.I praise you as my Master and my Lord."Amen and amen.