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  #521  
Old 02-05-2010, 07:56 PM
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I hope HardCory is okay. It's not like him to miss posting for a couple of days.
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  #522  
Old 02-06-2010, 12:15 AM
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I hope HardCory is okay. It's not like him to miss posting for a couple of days.
Sorry guys, my phone and internet went down this week, I'll get this caught up.
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  #523  
Old 02-06-2010, 12:17 AM
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Default Feb. 4

February 4, 2010

A Question Of Values

READ: Colossians 3:1-11

Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. —Colossians 3:2

On a trip through Chicago, I saw a poster advertising a business management seminar. The poster’s message was intriguing: The Value of a Leader Is Directly Proportional to That Leader’s Values. The accuracy of that statement struck me. What we value shapes our character—and will ultimately define how we lead, or whether we can lead at all. This does not apply only to leaders, however.

For the follower of Christ, values are even more significant. When Paul wrote to the believers at Colosse, he said, “Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth” (Col. 3:2). His point is that only as we allow our values to be motivated and shaped by the eternal (not the temporal) will we be effective ambassadors of Christ in the world. It is in the understanding that we are pilgrims in this world, not tourists, that we can keep a clear perspective and an undistracted heart—and can more effectively serve the Savior.

It has been said that we live in a world that knows the cost of everything but the value of nothing. In this world of the “here and now,” however, followers of Christ are called to build our values around what lasts forever. To say it another way: The Effectiveness of a Believer Is Directly Proportional to That Believer’s Values. — Bill Crowder

O Lord, You see what’s in the heart—
There’s nothing hid from You,
So help us live the kind of life
That’s honest, good, and true. —D. De Haan

Hold tightly to what is eternal, but loosely to what is temporal.
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  #524  
Old 02-06-2010, 12:17 AM
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Default Feb. 5

February 5, 2010

Like A Tree

READ: Ephesians 4:11-16

He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water. —Psalm 1:3

In the quietness of my final years I plan to watch a tree grow—a birch tree I planted as a tiny sapling over 30 years ago. It stands now in mature splendor, just outside our picture window—beautiful in every season of the year.

So it is with our spiritual endeavors: We may have planted, watered, and fussed over our “saplings” (those we’ve mentored) for a time, but only God can make a “tree.”

Occasionally I hear from those I ministered to years ago, and discover to my delight that they have grown to maturity and have been greatly used of God—with no help from me. It’s a gentle reminder that I plant and water for a while, and help others “grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ” (Eph. 4:15). But only God “gives the increase” (1 Cor. 3:6-7).

German theologian Helmut Thielicke writes, “The man who doesn’t know how to let go, who is a stranger to quiet, confident joy in Him who carries out His purposes without us (or also through us or in spite of us), in Him who makes the trees grow . . . that man will become nothing but a miserable creature in his old age.”

So, at my age, I may yet tend a sapling or two, but mostly I will let go and watch them grow. — David H. Roper

A Prayer: Lord, I want to be used by You in others’ lives. Teach me from Your Word so that I can help others follow You. And enable me to let go and trust You to work in them. Amen.

Those who follow Christ can help others follow Him too.
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  #525  
Old 02-06-2010, 12:18 AM
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Default Feb. 6

February 6, 2010

Charlie’s Walk On The Moon

READ: Genesis 5:21-32

Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him. —Genesis 5:24

The documentary In the Shadow of the Moon includes the story of Charlie Duke, one of the Apollo 16 astronauts launched to the moon in 1972. While the command ship orbited the moon, Duke and another astronaut landed the lunar module Orion on the moon’s surface. After 3 days of running experiments and collecting lunar rocks, the Apollo 16 crew safely returned to earth.

Later, Charlie had a spiritual transformation. He said it began when his friend invited him to a Bible study. After the meeting, Charlie prayed to Christ, “I give You my life, and if You’re real come into my life.” He then experienced an indescribable peace. It was so profound that he began to share his story with others. Charlie told them, “My walk on the moon lasted 3 days and it was a great adventure, but my walk with God lasts forever.”

The Bible tells us of another man who walked with God. “Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him” (Gen. 5:24). His spiritual walk with God was so close that God took him directly into eternity (see Heb. 11:5).

We can learn a lesson from Charlie and Enoch. For believers, no matter where our journey leads, our walk with God will last for eternity! — Dennis Fisher

Let me walk with You, dear Savior,
Side by side and hand in hand;
Keep me clean and pure and faithful
Till I reach the heavenly land. —Hess

Keep eternity’s goal in sight by walking daily in God’s light.
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  #526  
Old 02-06-2010, 11:49 PM
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Sorry guys, my phone and internet went down this week, I'll get this caught up.
I'm not complaining. Thanks for your dedication to posting these devotionals. I really appreciate it. No phone or internet. That could be a blessing.
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  #527  
Old 02-07-2010, 05:45 PM
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Default Feb. 7

February 7, 2010

Distracted

READ: Luke 10:38-42

Martha was distracted with much serving. —Luke 10:40

The university where I teach as an adjunct professor provides laptop computers for its students. While this can be an aid to the students in many ways, I have discovered one way it hinders learning: The laptops can become a distraction during class.

Because the students take notes on their laptops, they have them open on their desks during class. The problem is that they find texting their friends, visiting Facebook, or checking things on the Internet more interesting than my lectures.

A laptop loses value in the learning environment if it becomes a distraction—even if what the students are doing is positive.

Good things can do that. Things that have value can draw our attention away from what we should be paying attention to. This was true for Martha. Luke 10:40 says she was “distracted with much serving,” which took her away from spending time with Jesus. In the same way, a good hobby can have value in and of itself. But if it distracts you from your family responsibilities or relationship with God, some changes are needed.

Are life’s good options distracting you from what your primary priorities should be? Return, as Jesus told Martha, to what “is needed.” — Dave Branon

A Prayer: Help me, Lord, to make and to keep right priorities. To put You and time with You first. Give me discernment and the willingness to obey You today. Amen.

We were created to glorify God.
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  #528  
Old 02-07-2010, 05:46 PM
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Originally Posted by bigironcross View Post
I'm not complaining. Thanks for your dedication to posting these devotionals. I really appreciate it. No phone or internet. That could be a blessing.
Yeah, it was nice for a change not to have those distractions, the only reason I wanted internet back was to post these.
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  #529  
Old 02-08-2010, 03:39 AM
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Default Feb. 8

February 8, 2010

In Praise Of Slowness

READ: 2 Peter 3:1-9

The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness. —2 Peter 3:9

If there were a contest for most popular virtue, I suspect that “fast” would beat “best.” Many parts of the world seem to be obsessed with speed. The “fast” craze, however, is getting us nowhere—fast.

“The time has come to challenge our obsession with doing everything more quickly,” says Carl Honoré in his book In Praise of Slowness. “Speed is not always the best policy.”

According to the Bible, he’s right. Peter warned that in the last days people would doubt God because it seems He is slow (“slack”) in fulfilling His promise to return. Peter pointed out, however, that this seeming slowness is a good thing. God is actually demonstrating His patience by giving people more time to repent (2 Peter 3:9), and also being true to His character, as in patient or slow to anger (Ex. 34:6).

We too must be slow to become angry—and slow to speak (James 1:19). According to James, “quickness” is reserved for our ears. We’re supposed to be quick to listen. Think about how much trouble we could avoid if we learned to listen—really listen, not just stop talking—before we speak.

In our rush to meet goals and deadlines, let’s remember to speed up our listening and to slow down our tempers and our tongues. — Julie Ackerman Link

Dear heart, let perfect patience be thy goal;
It is the way earth’s noblest souls have trod.
’Tis just a calm adjustment of the soul
In all things to the perfect will of God. —Hayward

When you’re tempted to lose patience with another, think how patient God has been with you.
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  #530  
Old 02-08-2010, 01:14 PM
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I'm not complaining. Thanks for your dedication to posting these devotionals. I really appreciate it.
Yes, thanks HardCory, I have been slipping in my reading of them. Time to make them a priority again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bigironcross View Post
No phone or internet. That could be a blessing.
You said it, the power went out Saturday for my wife and I, we had a great time playing board games and hanging out. I'm not a bid fan of TV, and I mostly use the internet to post on ABC or listen to worship music-videos on Youtube.
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James 1:16-17 ESV
Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights
With God's help...Mens sana in corpore sano
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