Working on a Dream




Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Avoid Friendly Fire

I read about something interesting that happens at wartime called friendly fire. Friendly fire is when a soldier either purposely or accidentally shoots one of his fellow warriors. Sadly, this happens quite often on the battlefield.

One place this practice should not be taking place is inside the Church. In the book of Acts, Jesus told us to be His Witnesses in all the world, that is, to be His representatives (Acts 1:8). The mission He imparted on His followers is humbling and at times overwhelming. That is why it is so important to keep this mission in front of us at all times. It seems to me, that when Churches lose this mission, often times, they lose their way. This is generally when friendly fire takes place. When we start looking inward and stop looking outward.
Consider the most recent sporting event in which you attended. Who does all the yelling and screaming? The Fans!
The folks who are filling the seats, sitting comfortably, and watching ...
The players on the other hand, are busy. They are sweating, hurting, and engaged fully in the game. The players know they need their teammates to win and they support each other. In other words, no time for friendly fire when you are in the game.
Church, is it time that you wake up to your calling once again?
If we keep the main things the main things, a lot of our friendly fire will cease.  Let's face it, we have enough enemies already, we do not need to be fighting amongst ourselves.
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Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Satan has a plan

Satan called a worldwide convention of demons.
In his opening address he said, "We can't keep Christians from going to church." "We can't keep them from reading their Bibles and knowing the truth." "We can't even keep them from forming an intimate relationship with their saviour." "Once they gain that connection with Jesus, our power over them is broken." 

"So let them go to their churches; let them have their covered dish dinners, BUT steal their time, so they don't have time to develop a relationship with Jesus Christ.." 

"This is what I want you to do," said the devil: "Distract them from gaining hold of their Saviour and maintaining that vital connection throughout their day!" "How shall we do this?" his demons shouted. "Keep them busy in the non-essentials of life and invent innumerable schemes to occupy their minds," he answered. "Tempt them to spend, spend, spend, and borrow, borrow, borrow." 

"Persuade the wives to go to work for long hours and the husbands to work 6-7 days each week, 10-12 hours a day, so they can afford their empty lifestyles." "Keep them from spending time with their children." "As their families fragment, soon, their homes will offer no escape from the pressures of work!" "Over-stimulate their minds so that they cannot hear that still, small voice." 

"Entice them to play the radio or cassette player whenever they drive." To keep the TV, VCR, CDs and their PCs going constantly in their home and see to it that every store and restaurant in the world plays non-biblical music constantly." "This will jam their minds and break that union with Christ." "Fill the coffee tables with magazines and newspapers." "Pound their minds with the news 24 hours a day." "Invade their driving moments with billboards." "Flood their mailboxes with junk mail, mail order catalogs, sweepstakes, and every kind of newsletter and promotional offering free products, services and false hopes.." 

"Keep skinny, beautiful models on the magazines and TV so their husbands will believe that outward beauty is what's important, and they'll become dissatisfied with their wives..." "Keep the wives too tired to love their husbands at night." "Give them headaches too! " "If they don't give their husbands the love they need, they may begin to look elsewhere." "That will fragment their families quickly!" "Give them Santa Claus to distract them from teaching their children the real meaning of Christmas." 

"Give them an Easter bunny so they won't talk about his resurrection and power over sin and death." "Even in their recreation, let them be excessive." "Have them return from their recreation exhausted." "Keep them too busy to go out in nature and reflect on God's creation. Send them to amusement parks, sporting events, plays, concerts, and movies instead." "Keep them busy, busy, busy!" "And when they meet for spiritual fellowship, involve them in gossip and small talk so that they leave with troubled consciences. " "Crowd their lives with so many good causes they have no time to seek power from Jesus." 

"Soon they will be working in their own strength, sacrificing their health and family for the good of the cause." "It will work!" "It will work!" It was quite a plan! The demons went eagerly to their assignments causing Christians everywhere to get busier and more rushed, going here and there. 
Having little time for their God or their families. 
Having no time to tell others about the power of Jesus to change lives. I guess the question is, has the devil been successful in his schemes? 

Screwtape Letters, C. S. Lewis.

You be the judge.
Does "BUSY" mean: 
B-eing U-nder S-atan's Y-oke?

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Monday, September 19, 2016

I was dying ...

First I was dying to finish high school and start college
And then I was dying to finish college and start working
And then I was dying to marry and have children
And then I was dying for my children to grow old enough so they could go to school so I could go back to work
And then I was dying to retire

And now...

I am dying ... and suddenly I realize I forgot to live.


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Saturday, September 10, 2016

A Poem: Father & Daughter

This humid Pennsylvania afternoon I laid my head to rest. 
My son Carmen, in his crib, lays sleeping so when he wakes, he will be his very best.

But something else.
Something more
Captured my attention on this lazy afternoon.
The compassion of a 3 year old, my daughter, was in full bloom.

I felt the touch of her small hands as I lay, 
And peaked with one eye so observe what I may.

Over to the corner to grab a warm, cozy, blanket she goes...
Covering dad, from his head down to his toes.

I sat still and watched her closely while hiding my face,
All the while inside of my chest sat a fluttering heart because of her grace.

There is something special about a father and his daughter, they say... 
It reminds us of a bit of heaven on earth, and that is what I experienced today.

Written for Isabella Grace.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Be like the Bee.

When it comes to what we do with the Bible, H. P. Parker gives this memorable story that points to the need for both knowing and applying Bible truth:
As I looked out into the garden one day, I saw three things:
First, I saw a butterfly. 
The butterfly was beautiful, and it would alight on a flower and then it would flutter to another flower and then to another, and only for a second or two it would sit and it would move on. It would touch as many lovely blossoms as it could, but derived absolutely no benefit from it. 
Then I watched a little longer out my window and there came a botanist. 
And the botanist had a big notebook under his arm and a great big magnifying glass. The botanist would lean over a certain flower and he would look for a long time and then he would write notes in his notebook. He was there for hours writing notes, closed them, stuck them under his arm, tucked his magnifying glass in his pocket and walked away. 
The third thing I noticed was a bee, just a little bee. 
But the bee would light on a flower and it would sink down deep into the flower and it would extract all the nectar and pollen that it could carry. It went in empty every time and came out full.
John MacArthur says, “Some Christians, like that butterfly, flit from Bible study to Bible study, from sermon to sermon, and from commentary to commentary, while gaining little more than a nice feeling and some good ideas. Others, like the botanist, study Scripture carefully and take copious notes. They gain much information but little truth. Others, like the bee, go to the Bible to be taught by God and to grow in knowledge of Him. Also like the bee, they never go away empty.”
Which is it for you?
Do you bounce around, fluttering from one thing to the next? Do you immerse yourself so much in study that you never lift your eyes up? Or are you the bee that drinks deeply; steadily, and then goes out spreading the joy of the Gospel?
If you are a bee, share this message!