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Archive for September, 2011

It’s no fun when you use to be in good physical shape, then you fall out of it. Add in the aging factor, and getting back into shape is harder. However, it is worth the effort, because the better physical condition we’re in as we age, the better we can withstand diseases that strike us later on in life.

What about our spiritual strength? How do we withstand the day of distress when it hits us? (and it will!). First off, you better have the Great Physician on your side. Accepting Jesus as Lord and Savior is the most important part, but Jesus doesn’t want us to accept Him and that be all. We need to spend time with Him in prayer, studying His Word, and doing His will. We get our strength from Jesus, but we need to stay close to Him, so that we don’t let sin steal or dilute that strength. Then when the day of distress hits, you’ll find yourself withstanding the assault a lot easier since your strength won’t be slack.

Something to think about.

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verses 3-4: “By wisdom a house is built, And by understanding it is established; And by knowledge the rooms are filled With all precious and pleasant riches.”

One of the things that amazes people when our Carpenters for Christ group goes on a church building mission trip, is when they find out that not all of our mission crew are carpenters. Our leaders are experienced carpenters/builders, from the foreman to our individual team group leaders. The bulk of our group come from many other non-builder walks of life. So we are reliant on their experience and building knowledge to “put the house up right”.

Even when a young couple gets married and starts out establishing a home, they have sources of wisdom to rely on, such as parents and the families they came from. It is key that you rely on the proper sources of wisdom to build a house (whether a home or a church building). So who is your architect? 🙂

Something to think about.

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Proverbs 23:29-35

verses 29-35: “Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has contentions? Who has complaining? Who has wounds without cause? Who has redness of eyes? Those who linger long over wine, Those who go to taste mixed wine. Do not look on the wine when it is red, When it sparkles in the cup, When it goes down smoothly, At the last it bites like a serpent, And stings like a viper, Your eyes will see strange things, And your mind will utter perverse things. And you will be like one who lies down in the middle of the sea, Or like one who lies down on the top of a mast. “They struck me, but I did not become ill; They beat me, but I did not know it. When shall I awake? I will seek another drink.””

I have never been drunk…I don’t drink alcohol. I think the closest I’ve been to such a feeling was when I was on a prescription painkiller for post-surgical pain recently. I made the mistake of taking a dose of that medicine on an empty stomach. It wasn’t 30 minutes later, my head was swimming, and I couldn’t think straight. Make no mistake, the pain was gone alright! I managed to get into bed, and didn’t remember anything until next morning. I reflected later to my wife on what a weird feeling that was.

Solomon speaks on strong drink several times. The proverb here paints the picture of the drunkard…one who falls for the lure of the wine, regardless of what happens: how it numbs his perceptions, how it loosens his mental faculties, how he remembers nothing of what happens during his stupor, and how he wants only another drink when coming out of it. There are a lot of temptations in this world; alcohol is just one of them. Be on guard against the addictiveness of the world’s version of respite from your problems. Instead, seek the living water offered by the Great Physician. Jesus is the answer.

Have a better day in the Lord!

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verses 17-18: “Do not let your heart envy sinners, But live in the fear of the LORD always. Surely there is a future, And your hope will not be cut off.”

Sometimes it can be real easy to get depressed; we live in troubling times. It’s hard not to turn the nightly news on and hear negative stories about the economy or the government or troubles around the world; worse yet, log onto the internet, and you can get that bad news 24/7! It’s probably very rare that you don’t know someone yourself who may have lost a job, is going through rough times, and pines away for happier times. It’s like being in a dark tunnel, and you just don’t see any light at either end. You feel swallowed up. Even when your day has gone well, the devil crouches and like to dogpile you with worries.

Last night (and early this morning) was such a time for me; and thank God, He gave me this verse. Surely, we DO have a future…and our hope will NOT be cut off. It can seem like a rough patch at the moment, but lift your perspective and raise it up…and you might find that the tunnel you’re in, is really just a brief dark spot, and there’s light just beyond the rise. Don’t pine for the junk of this world…for the Christian, there’s a heavenly view in store, thanks to Jesus. We’re just passing through at the moment.

Have a better day in the Lord!

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verses 4-5: “Do not weary yourself to gain wealth, Cease from your consideration of it. When you set your eyes on it, it is gone. For wealth certainly makes itself wings, Like an eagle that flies toward the heavens.”

The old joke goes that a man greeted St. Peter at the pearly gates of heaven. On earth, he had been very rich, amassing a huge fortune. Though he was ready for eternity, he wanted to bring a memento of life on earth with him. St. Peter said this was not possible, that he had to leave all earthly possessions behind. The man pleaded and pleaded till St. Peter agreed to at least look at the memento that the man wanted to bring. Hurriedly returning to earth, the man loaded gold ingots into a satchel and dragged it back to the pearly gates. Opening it, he expected St. Peter to be impressed with this symbol of his wealth. However, St. Peter took one glance, looked at the man, and asked, “Pavement? You want to bring pavement with you?” It was then that the man looked and saw the streets of gold in heaven.

Today’s verses are a warning against coveting wealth. There is nothing wrong with earning money honestly; it’s when the pursuit of wealth grows to be of sole importance that it can lead to sin. People have worn themselves out trying to earn more and more, only to find out that financial wealth wasn’t what they needed. Do you want something truly invaluable; give your life to Jesus, and watch what happens!

Have a great day in the Lord!

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