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  #1481  
Old 08-24-2012, 08:17 PM
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hey Cory

Just wanted to say hi and say ive been reading through your DD and its very inspiring and motivating.

Im going to try and get back on here more often, this site was my home for years

-David

also... im having a hard time finding these old docs... are these still up anywhere? I am very in need of direction right now and would really like to dig through these for some guidance:

http://www.abcbodybuilding.com/forum...ad.php?t=37750
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  #1482  
Old 08-25-2012, 02:59 AM
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Default Aug. 25

Sleepless In Heaven

August 25, 2012

Read: Psalm 121

He who keeps you will not slumber. —Psalm 121:3

One of the most dangerous aspects of flying is the landing. As the aircraft gets closer to land, the air traffic is more congested, the weather on the ground may be far worse than the weather at 30,000 feet, and the runways may not be clear of other planes. So pilots rely on the air-traffic controller to coordinate all the details so that every plane can arrive without incident. Without the air-traffic controller, chaos would be certain.

Imagine, then, the panic when the pilot of an airliner full of passengers radioed the tower and got no answer. It was eventually discovered that the air-traffic controller was in fact there but sound asleep, putting pilot, passengers, and plane in great jeopardy. The good news is that the plane landed safely.

Even better news is that God, the ultimate traffic controller, neither slumbers nor sleeps. From His heavenly vantage point, He knows all that is going on in and around your life. As the psalmist notes, “My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber” (121:2-3).

You can count on it—God knows the impending dangers and will tirelessly direct the traffic of your life for your good and His glory (Rom. 8:28).
When trouble stalks the path we tread,
We need assurance, Lord, to know
That all our steps are being led—
That You, our God, are in control. —D. De Haan
Because God never sleeps, we can be at peace.
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  #1483  
Old 08-26-2012, 05:06 AM
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Default Aug. 26

Off-Limits

August 26, 2012

Read: Romans 5:1-8

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. —John 3:16

As a 12-year-old, I was curious about the Bible my dad was given when he retired from the paper mill. It came in a special cedar box marked The Holy Bible, and I assumed that “holy” meant it was off-limits to me. But still I peered inside. In the center of the Bible was a picture of Jesus hanging on the cross, along with the words of John 3:16. There was also a see-through red film covering the page, which I assumed meant He bled and died.

Occasionally, when no one else was looking, I would gently pull the holy Book off the shelf, open the box, look at the picture of Jesus on the cross, read the verse, and wonder about this Man and why He died. I wondered if His love was meant for me or if it too was off-limits.

Several years later I heard a message about how God had provided access to His love through Jesus. Romans 5:1-2 tells us: “We have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand.” I believed and received Jesus’ salvation from my sin.

Aren’t you thankful that the Bible and God’s love aren’t off-limits? Receive His forgiveness—it’s meant for unholy people like you and me.
How precious is God’s holy Word—
Its pages every one!
They lead us to the Living Word—
To Jesus, God’s dear Son. —D. De Haan
The Bible is God’s love letter to us.
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  #1484  
Old 08-27-2012, 12:06 AM
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Default Aug. 27

The New Normal

August 27, 2012

Read: Hebrews 4:9-16

For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. —Hebrews 4:15

A pastor, who was trained in trauma and grief counseling, commented that the greatest challenge for people who are hurting is often not the immediate heartache of the loss. Instead, the biggest problem is adjusting to the different kind of life that follows. What once was normal may never be normal again. So the challenge for those offering help is to assist the sufferers as they establish the “new normal.” It may be a new normal that no longer includes robust health, a treasured relationship, or a satisfying job. Or it may be living without a loved one who has been taken in death. The gravity of such losses forces us to live a different kind of life—no matter how unwelcome it may be.

When our “new normal” comes, it’s easy to think no one understands how we feel. But that isn’t true. Part of the reason Jesus came was to experience life among us, resulting in His present ministry: “For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin” (Heb. 4:15).

Our Savior lived a perfect life, yet He also knew the pains of a broken world. He endured sorrow; He suffered agony. And He stands ready to encourage us when the dark moments of life force us to embrace a new normal.
Father, thank You that in the darkest seasons of life, You
will never abandon us. Guide us with Your never-failing
presence through both the welcome and unwelcome changes
of life. In Jesus’ name, amen.
In our desert of grief, Jesus can provide an oasis of hope.
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  #1485  
Old 08-28-2012, 12:07 PM
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Serve Well With Joy

August 28, 2012

Read: Psalm 100

Serve the Lord with gladness. —Psalm 100:2

Nine years ago today a good friend went out for a lunchtime jog and never came back. Kurt De Haan, who was the managing editor of Our Daily Bread, died of a heart attack on that sunny Thursday. Some of us who worked with Kurt still keep mementos of him in our offices.

For instance, on one wall of my cubicle, I display the last memo I received from Kurt. It reminds me of his thoroughness as an editor—striving to represent God’s Word accurately and well. Another co-worker displays the last paper wad Kurt threw in her direction, reminding her of his eagerness to enjoy life.

Each time we talk about Kurt and how much we miss him, we discuss his combination of a quest for excellence mixed with an enjoyable personality. He worked hard and loved life. He strove to teach God’s Word with integrity while living his life with joy.

Remembering Kurt and his example is refreshing and challenging. It reminds us that others are watching us and can tell if we’re serving “the Lord with gladness” (Ps. 100:2), and if our love for Jesus is coming through in our good works (Eph. 2:10). Serve well. Serve with joy. Does that describe our work for the Savior?
Help me, dear Jesus, to live out the joy
and peace You’ve given to me. May those who work
with and know me see that joy. And may I always
stand for truth and righteousness.
For joy that will last, always put Christ first.
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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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  #1486  
Old 08-29-2012, 02:35 AM
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Default Aug. 29

Until You Are Full

August 29, 2012

Read: John 6:25-29

I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst. —John 6:35

A friend who lives in Singapore told me about an old Chinese greeting. Instead of “How are you?” people would ask “Have you eaten until you are full?” The greeting likely originated during a time when food was scarce and many people did not know when they would have their next meal. When food was available, it was advisable to eat until they were full.

After Jesus miraculously fed 5,000 people with five loaves and two small fish (John 6:1-13), the crowd followed Him wanting more (vv.24-26). The Lord told them not to work for physical food that spoils, but “for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you . . . . I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst” (vv.27,35).

As followers of Jesus, we should help those who lack adequate physical nutrition. And with all, we can share the good news that our hunger for inner peace, forgiveness, and hope can be satisfied by knowing Christ the Lord.

Jesus Christ, the bread of life, invites us to come to Him for His feast for the soul, urging us to eat until we are full.
Thank You, Jesus, that You call out to those
who are weary and thirsty and say, “Come to Me
and be filled.” We are hungry and are thankful
that You satisfy us. Amen.
There is a longing in every heart that only Jesus can satisfy.
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  #1487  
Old 08-30-2012, 02:42 AM
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Default Aug. 30

Panning For Gold

August 30, 2012

Read: Luke 18:18-30

The genuineness of your faith [is] much more precious than gold. —1 Peter 1:7

While on vacation in Alaska, we visited the El Dorado Gold Mine near Fairbanks. After a tour and demonstrations of mining techniques during Gold Rush days, we got to do a little panning for gold. Each person was given a pan and a bag of dirt and stones. After pouring the contents into the pan, we added water from a trough and swirled it around to stir up the silt and allow the gold, which is heavy, to sink to the bottom. Even though we had watched experts, we made little progress. The reason? Concerned about discarding something of value, we were unwilling to throw away worthless stones.

This reminded me of how possessions sometimes keep us from finding what is truly valuable. Jesus had an encounter with a rich man for whom this was true. His earthly wealth was more important to him than spiritual treasure (Luke 18:18-30). Jesus said, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God!” (v.24).

Although money is not evil, it can prevent us from inheriting true riches if accumulating it is the goal of our lives. To hoard wealth is foolish, for it is genuine faith, not gold, that will sustain us through trials and result in praise, honor, and glory to God (1 Peter 1:7).
I’d rather have Jesus than silver or gold,
I’d rather be His than have riches untold;
I’d rather have Jesus than houses or lands,
I’d rather be led by His nail-pierced hands. —Miller
Keep your eyes on Jesus so you don’t allow earthly riches to blind you to spiritual riches.
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  #1488  
Old 08-31-2012, 03:53 AM
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Default Aug. 31

Turnaround

August 31, 2012

Read: Galatians 1:11-24

He who formerly persecuted us now preaches the faith which he once tried to destroy. —Galatians 1:23

Bill was a friend of mine in semi- nary who had come to Christ out of a blatantly sinful lifestyle. He described it this way: “I was driving down the street drinking a bottle of brandy with another man’s wife at my side. When I saw some Christians on the sidewalk witnessing to passersby about Christ, I drove by and shouted, ‘Fools!’ But only a few weeks later I found myself kneeling in a church and asking Christ to become my Savior and Lord.” Bill’s conversion resulted in his giving up his old ways and experiencing a new life in Christ. It was a life-changing turnaround.

True repentance, which is initiated by the Holy Spirit, includes a real turnaround. Often we see that the greater the opposition to the gospel prior to conversion, the more stunning the change of direction afterward. When Saul of Tarsus encountered Christ on the road to Damascus, he was changed from a persecutor to a preacher of the gospel. Of this many observed: “He who formerly persecuted us now preaches the faith which he once tried to destroy” (Gal. 1:23).

Authentic conversion includes repentance, which is a change of mind and direction. For the follower of Christ, repentance means to keep turning away from sin and turning toward Christ in obedience.
Out of my shameful failure and loss,
Jesus, I come, Jesus, I come;
Into the glorious gain of Thy cross,
Jesus, I come to Thee. —Sleeper
Repentance is being so sorry for sin that you are willing to give it up.
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  #1489  
Old 09-01-2012, 02:56 PM
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Default Sep. 1

A Unique Choir

September 1, 2012

Read: Romans 15:5-13

That you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. —Romans 15:6

When Mitch Miller died in July 2010, most people remembered him as the man who invited everyone to sing along. On his popular 1960s TV program Sing Along with Mitch, an all-male chorus sang well-loved songs while the words appeared on the screen so viewers could join in. A Los Angeles Times obituary cited Miller’s belief that one reason for the program’s success was the appeal of his chorus: “I always made a point of hiring singers who were tall, short, bald, round, fat, whatever—everyday-looking guys.” From that unified diversity came beautiful music in which everyone was invited to participate.

In Romans 15, Paul called for unity among the followers of Christ—“that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” (v.6). From several Old Testament passages, he spoke of Gentiles and Jews together singing praise to God (vv.9-12). A unity that had been considered impossible became reality as people who had been deeply divided began thanking God together for His mercy shown in Christ. Like them, we are filled with joy, peace, and hope “by the power of the Holy Spirit” (v.13).

What a unique “choir” we belong to, and what a privilege it is to sing along!
Lord, we are grateful that we can be a part of Your
family. Help us to live in unity with our brothers and
sisters in Christ so that others may see how gracious
You are and want to know You too. Amen.
Unity among believers comes from our union with Christ.
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  #1490  
Old 09-02-2012, 04:10 PM
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Default Sep. 2

Two-Way Communication

September 2, 2012

Read: Psalm 119:17-24

Your testimonies also are my delight and my counselors. —Psalm 119:24

Have you ever been stuck in a conversation with someone who talks only about himself? To be polite, you strike up a dialogue by asking questions. The other person proceeds to talk endlessly about himself, and he never once asks you anything. It is all about that person—and nothing about you.

Imagine what it must be like for our heavenly Father to listen to our prayers during our devotional time. We may have read a portion of His Word, but then in prayer we swiftly shift focus exclusively to our needs. We ask for help in solving a problem, providing for a financial need, or healing a physical ailment. But the passage we’ve just read doesn’t even enter into our prayers. What God has just said to us goes largely unacknowledged.

Apparently the writer of Psalm 119 did not have this perspective. Instead, he sought God’s help in understanding the Word: “Open my eyes,” he said, “that I may see wondrous things from Your law” (v.18). And as he prayed he expressed how he treasured God’s Word, calling it his “delight” (v.24).

Let’s develop a discipline of praying our response to the Word. It just might transform our devotional time. Bible reading and prayer should reflect a two-way communication.
Lord, I’ve just read Your Word to me in Psalm 119.
Give me a strong desire like the psalmist’s to keep Your
Word. Show me what I can do to make it my delight and
counselor. Open my eyes and heart to learn from You.
Listen to God’s Word then pray about what you’ve heard.
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