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MRSJERRYBUSH's Photo MRSJERRYBUSH Posts: 7,101
11/25/12 11:48 A

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Loved the lighthouse candle story. We all must let our little light shine! emoticon emoticon

Thanks, Irene.

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DIDMIS's Photo DIDMIS Posts: 101,807
11/25/12 3:10 A

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The Lighthouse Candle
This is a story about a small candle carried by a man who was climbing the stairs of a lighthouse.

In their way up to the top, the candle asked the man, "Where are we going?"

"We're going to the top of this lighthouse and give signals to the big ships on the ocean," the man answered.

"What? How could it be possible for me with my small light to give signals to those big ships?"

"They will never be able to see my light", replied the candle weakly.

"That's your part. If your light is small, let it be. All you have to do is keep burning and leave the rest to me", said the man.

A little later, they arrived at the top of the lighthouse where there was a big lamp with a loop behind it. Then the man lit the lamp with the light of the candle and instantly, the place shone so brightly that the ships on the ocean could see its light.

---

Do not look at your inability, limitations, and weaknesses. God entrust you with something, whether it is a work or a ministry. Have faith that you are in His mighty hand that He will use you according to His will.



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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/24/12 1:04 A

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Thankful Prayers



“We always thank God for all of you and continually mention you in our prayers.” 1 Thessalonians 1:2

Prayers of thanksgiving bring a smile to the face of God. He delights in hearing His children express to heaven their gratitude for their sisters and brothers on earth. Jesus expects His followers to not just tolerate one another, but to celebrate each other’s uniqueness. A prayer of thanksgiving for another needy soul grows a heart of love for souls. Consistent prayers of gratitude gets God’s attention and moves His heart to bless, forgive and love.

We all need prayer; prayer for wisdom, prayer for solutions, prayer for healing, prayer for forgiveness, prayer for reconciliation, prayer for salvation, prayer for God’s will, prayer for strength, prayer for faith, prayer for courage, prayer for work and prayer for patience. How grateful we soon become, when we reflect on friends who lift us to the Lord with passionate petitions. We thank God for those precious souls who pray for our soul care.

“We ought always to thank God for you, brothers and sisters, and rightly so, because your faith is growing more and more, and the love all of you have for one another is increasing.” 2 Thessalonians 1:3

Do you thank Christ regularly for those whose faith is on fire? Are you grateful to God for the grace of God that is ever growing in your community of faith? Those who boldly bear a beautiful banner for Jesus need our serious prayer support. The enemy rages against the righteous who are engaged in eternal issues: justice for the poor, education for the ignorant, church planting, job training, discipleship and food for the hungry.

Your grateful prayers to God garner good will for those executing God’s will. Thank Him for their trust that perseveres through persecution. Thank Jesus for those who share Jesus with words and deeds. Thank your heavenly Father for the fathers and mothers who model compassion, love, leadership and the nurturing of their children. Thank Him for single adults who hope in Christ and who serve unselfishly in His name. Gratitude prays!

“I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers, because I hear about your love for all his holy people and your faith in the Lord Jesus.” Philemon 1:4-5

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for the passionate prayers of Your people.

Related Readings: Nehemiah 11:17; Philippians 4:6; Colossians 1:3; 1 Timothy 2:1


IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/22/12 11:12 A

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Thankful for Thanksgiving



“Cry out, “Save us, God our Savior; gather us and deliver us from the nations, that we may give thanks to your holy name, and glory in your praise.” 1 Chronicles 16:35

A nation that stays on its knees in thanksgiving to God enjoys the blessings of God. Sophistication is never meant to substitute ingenuity for the Spirit’s power. Modern conveniences are meant to be a catalyst for Christ’s love to be leveraged worldwide. Moreover, when a country dedicates a holiday—holy day—in remembrance of the Almighty’s favor the citizens of that nation remember their true Originator and Sustainer.

We are a blessed people because of the godly people who went before us under the authority of Almighty God. We stand on the shoulders of other saints who believed boldly in the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ and the working of His power that fueled their faith, their patriotism, their life, their work and their relationships. Therefore, we are compelled to be thankful for our ancestor’s blood, sweat, tears, resolve and trust in God.

“I thank and praise you, God of my ancestors: You have given me wisdom and power, you have made known to me what we asked of you, you have made known to us the dream of the king.” Daniel 2:23

Yes, you can bow quietly at home with your family in gratitude for God’s great goodness and provision. The faith of your forefathers in your heavenly Father is a gift that keeps giving to this day. Remind your children of the context of their Christianity. It is a privilege they have to praise and worship God without intrusion from outsiders. They can be thankful to the Lord for their heritage of faith that facilitates humility, love and service.

Furthermore, your freedom to express your faith can be a blessing to other less fortunate nations. A nation that gives away God’s love is a nation that is loved by God. Take His blessings and bless the nations. Your motive is not to make them like your country, but to help them understand how to be like Jesus. One newly converted leader filled with the Holy Spirit can influence the masses to embrace Christ. So today, thank God for a day of Thanksgiving and from a grateful heart give all nations an opportunity to know His love!

“First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world.” Romans 1:8

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thanks for blessing my nation, so that I can bless other nations.

Related Readings: Exodus 3:15; Micah 7:7; Colossians 3:17; I Thessalonians 2:13

Post/Tweet this today: A nation that stays on its knees in thanksgiving to God enjoys the blessings of God. #thanksgiving



IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/21/12 11:23 P

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Worship

We hear a lot about “worship”—but what is it exactly? Worship is when you’re aware that what you’ve been given is far greater than what you can give. Worship is the awareness that were it not for God’s touch, you’d still be hobbling and hurting, bitter and broken. Worship is the “thank you” that refuses to be silenced.

Oh we’ve tried to make a science out of worship. We can’t do that any more than we can “sell love” or negotiate peace.” Worship is a voluntary act of gratitude offered by the saved to the Savior, by the healed to the Healer, and by the delivered to the Deliverer.

If you and I can go days without feeling an urge to say “thank you” to the One who saved, healed, and delivered us, then we’d do well to remember what He did!

“All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God. 2 Corinthians 4:15”

From In the Eye of the Storm




IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/20/12 6:22 P

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The Cross Room
The young man was at the end of his rope.

Seeing no way out, he dropped to his knees in prayer.

"Lord, I can't go on," he said.

"I have too heavy a cross to bear."

The Lord replied,

"My son, if you can't bear it's weight,

just place your cross inside this room.

Then open another door and pick any cross you wish."

The man was filled with relief.

"Thank you, Lord,"

he sighed, and did as he was told.

As he looked around the room he saw many different crosses;

some so large the tops were not visible.

Then he spotted a tiny cross leaning against a far wall.

"I'd like that one, Lord,"

he whispered. And the Lord replied,

"My son, that's the cross you brought in."
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

When life problems seem overwhelming,
it helps to look around and see what others are having to endure.
Then you may see for yourself that you are more fortunate than you realized.





IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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4A-HEALTHY-BMI's Photo 4A-HEALTHY-BMI Posts: 6,027
11/20/12 12:45 P

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Soyen Shaku, the first Zen teacher to come to America, said: "My heart burns like fire but my eyes are as cold as dead ashes." He made the following rules which he practiced every day of his life.

- In the morning before dressing, light incense and meditate.
- Retire at a regular hour. Partake of food at regular intervals. Eat with moderation and never to the point of satisfaction.
- Receive a guest with the same attitude you have when alone. When alone, maintain the same attitude you have in receiving guests.
- Watch what you say, and whatever you say, practice it.
- When an opportunity comes do not let it pass you by, yet always think twice before acting.
- Do not regret the past. Look to the future.
- Have the fearless attitude of a hero and the loving heart of a child.
- Upon retiring, sleep as if you had entered your last sleep. Upon awakening, leave your bed behind you instantly as if you had cast away a pair of old shoes.

www.101zenstories.com

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11/14/12 11:18 P

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The Two Visitors

Two visitors came to see me, both at the same time,
Both were trying to win control of my body, heart, and mind
One was dressed quite plainly, one dressed fit to kill,
I couldn't see the battle they were waging for my will.

One promised to give fame, friends and riches beyond compare,
Anything I wanted, it seemed, and while I was standing there,
He showed me how life could be, for a little while at least,
I couldn't see beneath the clothes, to recognize the beast.

The other told of hard times, of sacrifice and pain,
Ridicule and persecution, nothing much to gain,
But there was something deep in this visitor's eyes
That made me feel to choose Him, somehow would be wise.

I guess you know the outcome, I hope my life reflects,
The one I picked, the path I chose, the one that He directs.
But now at last I see Him, as He truly is THE KING!
So, did I choose so poorly, I wonder as I sing...

Eternal praises to my God at last in heaven's city.
Could I have been richer, more popular, what a pity-
For now all I have to show for the pain and unkind laughter,
Is a crystal mansion on a street of gold, living happily ever after.


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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DIDMIS's Photo DIDMIS Posts: 101,807
11/13/12 7:33 P

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There Really Was a Jesus

You can trust the Holy Bible from the first page to the last. You can trust what it says about the future, and what it says about the past.

There really was a Noah, who built an ark with a hammer and a nail. There really was a Jonah, who lived after being swallowed by a whale.

There really was a town called Sodom, destroyed by fire and brimstone from above. And God really did feed the Hebrews with manna, sent to him with love.

There really was a Virgin Mary, who conceived Jesus in her womb. And it's true he came to life again, after being buried in a tomb.

It's true Jesus healed the sick, and gave sight to those who couldn't see. It's true he healed the deaf, and walked on the Sea of Galilee.

He healed some who couldn't walk, and raised three persons from the dead. He fed a multitude of people with only two fish and five loaves of bread.

The Bible tells us of Hell...a place for those not forgiven of their sin. And it tells us of Heaven...a place Christ's disciples are sure to enter in.

The Bible speaks of many things... some easy, some hard to understand. But the Bible can be fully trusted, for it came from God's almighty hand.

So, don't pass judgment on the Bible. It's always right, never wrong. For God has give all its contents, and there's not a verse that doesn't belong.

No, don't pass judgment on the Bible. It's God's infallible Word. Just listen to God speak as you read it. You'll be blessed by what is heard.


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/12/12 10:52 P

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The Visitor

One day, a man went to visit a church. He arrived early, parked his car, and got out. Another car pulled up near him, and the driver told him, "I always park there. You took my place!"

The visitor went inside for Sunday School, found an empty seat, and sat down. A young lady from the church approached him and stated, "That's my seat! You took my place!"

The visitor was somewhat distressed by this rude welcome, but said nothing. After Sunday School, the visitor went into the church sanctuary and sat down. Another member walked up to him and said, "That's where I always sit. You took my place!"

The visitor was even more troubled by this treatment, but still said nothing. Later, as the congregation was praying for Christ to dwell among them, the visitor stood, and his appearance began to change. Horrible scars became visible on his hands and on his sandaled feet.

Someone from the congregation noticed him and called out, "What happened to you?" The visitor replied, "I took your place."

"Christ himself carried our sins in His body to the cross, so that we might die to sin and live for righteousness. It is by His wounds that you have been healed."


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/10/12 6:59 P

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If you don't mind crying!

A Brother Like That

A man named Paul received an automobile from his brother as a Christmas present. On Christmas Eve when Paul came out of his office, a street urchin was walking around the shining new car admiring it. "Is this your car, Mister?" he asked.

Paul nodded. "My brother gave it to me for Christmas." The boy was astounded. "You mean your brother gave it to you and it didn't cost you nothing? Boy, I wish..." He hesitated.

Of course Paul knew what he was going to wish for. He was going to wish he had a brother like that. But what this lad said jarred Paul all the way down to his heels.

"I wish," the boy went on, "that I could be a brother like that."

Paul looked at the boy in astonishment, then impulsively he added, "Would you like to take a ride in my automobile?"

"Oh yes, I'd love that." After a short ride, the boy turned with his eyes aglow and said, "Mister, would you mind driving in front of my house?"

Paul smiled a little. He thought he knew what the lad wanted. He wanted to show his neighbors that he could ride home in a big automobile. But Paul was wrong again. "Will you stop where those two steps are?" the boy asked.

He ran up the steps. Then in a little while Paul heard him coming back, but he was not coming fast. He was carrying his little crippled brother. He sat him down on the bottom step, then sort of squeezed up against him and pointed to the car.

"There she is, Buddy, just like I told you upstairs. His brother gave it to him for Christmas and it didn't cost him a cent. And someday I'm gonna give you one just like it...and you can see for yourself all the pretty things in the Christmas windows that I've been trying to tell you about."

Paul got out and lifted the lad into the front seat of his car. The shining-eyed older brother climbed in beside him and the three of them began a memorable holiday ride.

That Christmas Eve, Paul learned what Jesus meant when he had said: "It's more blessed to give..."


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/10/12 2:36 P

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emoticon emoticon

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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MJREIMERS's Photo MJREIMERS Posts: 4,545
11/10/12 12:56 P

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This is good!!! Thanks friend! emoticon

~Mako~


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11/10/12 1:24 A

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This is Good!

An old story is told of a king in Africa who had a close friend with whom he grew up. The friend had a habit of looking at every situation that ever occurred in his life (positive or negative) and remarking, "This is good!"

One day the king and his friend were out on a hunting expedition. The friend would load and prepare the guns for the king. The friend had apparently done something wrong in preparing one of the guns, for after taking the gun from his friend, the king fired it and his thumb was blown off. Examining the situation the friend remarked as usual, "This is good!" To which the king replied, "No, this is NOT good!" and proceeded to send his friend to jail.

About a year later, the king was hunting in an area that he should have known to stay clear of. Cannibals captured him and took him to their village. They tied his hands, stacked some wood, set up a stake and bound him to the stake.

As they came near to set fire to the wood, they noticed that the king was missing a thumb. Being superstitious, they never ate anyone that was less than whole. So untying the king, they sent him on his way. As he returned home, he was reminded of the event that had taken his thumb and felt remorse for his treatment of his friend. He went immediately to the jail to speak with his friend. "You were right," he said, "it was good that my thumb was blown off." And he proceeded to tell the friend all that had just happened. "And so I am very sorry for sending you to jail for so long. It was bad for me to do this."

"No," his friend replied, "This is good!"

"What do you mean,'This is good'? How could it be good that I sent my friend to jail for a year?"

"If I had NOT been in jail, I would have been with you." "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose." (Rom. 8:28)


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/8/12 1:22 P

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For Jesus

Only with him I become free
It is only him that allows me to see
Only in his eyes am I an angel by his side
Blessed are you, in which I must abide
The power of his grace, opens my darkened heart
He IS a God that has carried me from the start
With his love, his glory and grace
He will take my soul, to his heavenly place
Stronger than I, and everything we are
He is so close, so near, not far
I only dream of my life without shame
No crying, no sadness, no heartache, nor pain
I love you Lord Jesus, with every beat of my heart
Ive loved you forever, from the very start
Your perfect to me, in all that you do
Your the only thing that's wonderful and true
Without you in my life, without you in my heart
My world would be devastated, my world would fall apart
Never leave me, my savior, my Lord
I need you everyday, that's my true word
Forgive me Lord Jesus, for all my disgrace
Someday Lord, can you take me to our heavenly place
I give you my life, I give you my love
Please consider me...my Lord from up above


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/7/12 11:53 P

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The Two Visitors

Two visitors came to see me, both at the same time,
Both were trying to win control of my body, heart, and mind
One was dressed quite plainly, one dressed fit to kill,
I couldn't see the battle they were waging for my will.

One promised to give fame, friends and riches beyond compare,
Anything I wanted, it seemed, and while I was standing there,
He showed me how life could be, for a little while at least,
I couldn't see beneath the clothes, to recognize the beast.

The other told of hard times, of sacrifice and pain,
Ridicule and persecution, nothing much to gain,
But there was something deep in this visitor's eyes
That made me feel to choose Him, somehow would be wise.

I guess you know the outcome, I hope my life reflects,
The one I picked, the path I chose, the one that He directs.
But now at last I see Him, as He truly is THE KING!
So, did I choose so poorly, I wonder as I sing...

Eternal praises to my God at last in heaven's city.
Could I have been richer, more popular, what a pity-
For now all I have to show for the pain and unkind laughter,
Is a crystal mansion on a street of gold, living happily ever after.


More GodVine

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/6/12 12:10 P

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Called to Wait

“So Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the presence of his brothers, and from that day on the Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon David… “David came to Saul and entered his service. Saul liked him very much, and David became one of his armor-bearers.” 1 Samuel 16:13, 21

The calling of God includes seasons of waiting in faithful service. David was anointed and experienced the power of God, but it was over twenty years before he became King. Public responsibilities require private experience and success. The Lord’s calling starts with a thorny crown of commitment and grows into a shiny crown of respect. The flesh wants to influence the masses prematurely, but the Spirit is patient to pay the price of wise waiting, before proceeding.

We have the opportunity to be faithful where the Lord has us. His power is prevalent through our humble prayers and our quiet acts of random kindness. Jesus doesn’t discount small deeds done in His name. Thus, whatever we do, we do all for the glory of God. We visit the elderly, we care for the dying, we rescue the unrighteous, we carry one another’s burdens and we shepherd the flock of God—all for Him. We win while we wait, because Christ is positioning us for influence.

“David said to the Philistine, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.” 1 Samuel 17:45

Do you face a giant obstacle that threatens to derail you from God’s best? Have you forgotten why the Lord has taken you through this trial? His call for you to wait is an opportunity to understand where to go next. In this parenthesis of time, He has prepared or repaired your integrity, so you can engage intense encounters with the enemy, without compromise. Jesus works out His will while you wait. He grows you to grow bold in your belief in Him.

Furthermore, heed His call to wait, so you can create a sustainable schedule of activity. Jesus has not called you to be everyone’s friend. Everyone’s friend is nobody’s friend. Relationships that are an inch deep and a mile wide die a shallow and slow death. But when you go deep with a few, you grow loyal and lifetime friendships. Create significant space in your calendar, so you can respond to Christ’s call. Budget your time, as you budget your money. God’s call to wait is your opportunity to become humble and wiser. Work faithfully while you wait and watch Him work!

“We wait in hope for the LORD; he is our help and our shield.” Psalm 33:20

Prayer: Heavenly Father, grow me in humility and wisdom as I wait on Your next step.

Related Readings: Psalm 130:5-6; Proverbs 20:22; Isaiah 26:8; Lamentations 3:24-26; Jude 1:21


IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/5/12 12:18 A

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Hope in God

O there are hours so dark and dull,
That naught of earthly light can cheer;
Hours full of fear-and sorrowful-
When the worn spirit has no ear
For comfort, and its misery
Can find no solace but from Thee.


From Thee-whose eye is never closed
To mortal grief-how oft have I
Beneath Thy shelt'ring wing reposed
From suffering's storms, and tranquilly
Seen the clouds burst secure and free
From terror, harbored, Lord! by Thee!


By Thee-who, when Thy children press
To Thy kind presence, bid'st them come:
And, pleased to shield, and pleased to bless,
Art their defense-their port-their home:
Where, safe from gusts, their bark shall be
Anchored for ever, Lord! by Thee.


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/4/12 3:28 A

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Building Your Home

A great and wise man once called one of his workmen to him saying, "Go into the far country and build for me a house. The decisions of planning and of actual construction will be yours, but remember, I shall come to accept your work for a very special friend of mine."

And so the workman departed with a light heart for his field of labor. Material of all kinds was plentiful here, but the workman had a mind of his own. "Surely," he thought, "I know my business. I can use a bit of inferior materials here and cheat on my workmanship a little there, and still make the finished work look good. Only I will know that what I have built has weaknesses."

And so, at last the work was completed and the workman reported back to the great and wise man. "Very good," he said. "Now remember that I wanted you to use only the finest materials and craftsmanship in this house because I wanted to make present of it? My friend, you are the one I had you build it for. It is all yours."

How much like man. He comes to earth a stranger. He has his free agency. He may build as he likes. But on the morning of his resurrection he will receive what he has built for an eternal home and habitation.

By Godvine



IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/3/12 1:26 A

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Angels Among Us

I was walking home from school on a cold winter day. I took a shortcut through the woods and lost my way. It was getting late and I was scared and alone, but then a kind old man took my hand and led me home.

Now, Momma could not see him, oh but he was standing there and I knew in my heart he was the answer to my prayers. Oh, I believe there are angels among us sent down to us from somewhere up above.

They come to you and me in our darkest hours to show us how to live, to teach us how to give, to guide us with the light of love.

When life held trouble times and had me down on my knees, there's always been someone come along and comfort me, a kind word from a stranger to lend a helping hand, a phone call from a friend just to say I understand.

Ain't it kind of funny at the dark end of the road that someone lights the way with just a single ray of hope?

Oh, I believe there are angels among us sent down to us from somewhere up above. They come to you and to me in our darkest hours to show us how to live, to teach us how to give, to guide us with the light of love.

They wear so many faces, show up in the strangest places, to grace us with their mercy in our time of need.

Oh, I believe there are angels among us sent down to us from somewhere up above. They come to you and me in our darkest hours, to show us how to live, to teach us to give, to guide us with the light of love. To guide us with the light of love!


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/2/12 8:47 A

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Heaven's Stairs

The "Stairway" rises "Heaven high"-
The "steps" are dark and steep,
In weariness we climb them
As we stumble, fall and weep...
And many times we falter
Along the "path of prayer"
Wondering if You hear us
And if You really care...
Oh, give us some assurance,
Restore our faith anew,
So we can keep on climbing
The "Stairs of Prayer" to You-
For we are weak and wavering,
Uncertain and unsure,
And only meeting You in prayer
Can help us to endure
All life's trials and troubles
It's sickness, pain and sorrow,
And give us strength and courage
To face and meet tomorrow!


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/1/12 11:31 A

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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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11/1/12 6:00 A

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Very nice poem.



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Will You Live Today?

I woke up today,
And I saw my Lord.
He was standing there
And He asked me this question.
"Will you live today
The way I would?
Or will you laugh at me
In front of the world?"

In the car today,
I turned on the radio.
I started dancing to
A pretty cool song.
Then my Lord again,
He asked me His question.

Will you live today
The way Jesus would?
Or will you laugh at Him,
In front of the world.

And at school today,
I found myself,
Lookin' at those girls,
And thinkin' those thoughts
Then my Lord again,
He asked me His question.

And at the movies,
Sitting in line.
I couldn't decide whether
I really should watch it.
Then my Lord again,
He asked me His question.

Then my Lord, He said to me.
That, it's hard to live like He would.
But He said, "it's worth all the pain,
For in heaven, you'll receive your reward."


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/31/12 1:10 A

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Lord, Let Me Give

I do not know how long I'll live
But while I live, Lord, let me give
Some comfort to someone in need
By smile or nod, kind word or deed.

And let me do what ever I can
To ease things for my fellow man.
I want naught but to do my part
To "lift" a tired or weary heart.

To change folks' frowns to smiles again.
Then I will not have lived in vain
And I'll not care how long I'll live
If I can give ... and give ... and give.


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/30/12 12:00 P

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Burdens Give Us Wings

An old legend relates that long ago God had a great many burdens which He wished to have carried from one place to another on earth, so He asked the animals to lend a hand. But all of them began to make excuses for not helping: the elephant was too dignified; the lion, too proud; and so on. Finally the birds came to God and said, "If you will tie the burdens into small bundles, we'll be glad to carry them for you. We are small but we would like to help."

So God fastened upon the back of each one a small bundle, and they all set out walking across the plain to their destination. They sang as they went, and did not seem to feel the weight of their burdens at all. Every day the burdens seemed lighter and lighter, until the loads seem to be lifting the birds, instead of the birds carrying the burdens.

When they arrived at their destination, they discovered that when they removed their loads, there were wings in their place, wings which enabled them to fly to the sky and the tree tops.

They had learned how to carry their burdens, and their loads had become wings to carry them nearer to God. Burdens we carry for others may become wings of the spirit, to lift us into happiness such as we have never known.


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/28/12 11:22 P

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Heaven's Grocery Store

I was walking down life's highway a long time ago.
One day I saw a sign that read, "Heaven's Grocery Store".
As I got a little closer the door came open wide,
and when I came to myself I was standing inside.
I saw a host of Angels, they were standing everywhere.
One handed me a blanket and said, "My Child shop with care".
Everything a Christian needs is in that grocery store,
and all you can't carry, come back the next day for more.

First, I got some Patience, Love was in the same row.
Further down was Understanding, needed everywhere you go.
I got a box or two of Wisdom, a bag or two of Faith,
I just couldn't miss the Holy Ghost, it was all over the place.
I stopped to get some Strength and Courage to help me run this race,
but then my blanket was getting full, and I remembered I needed Grace.

I didn't forget Salvation, which like the others was free,
so I tried to get enough of that to save both you and me.
Then I started to the counter to pay my grocery bill,
for I thought I had everything to do my master's will.
As I went up the aisle, I saw Prayer and had to put it in,
for I knew when I stepped outside, I would run right into sin.
Peace and Joy were plentiful, they were on the last shelf.
Song and Praises were hanging near, so I just helped myself.

Then I said to the Angel, "How much do I owe"?
The Angel smiled and said, "Just take them everywhere you go."
Again, I politely asked "How much do I really owe?"
The Angel smiled again and said, "My Child, Jesus Paid Your Bill A Long Time Ago."


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/24/12 3:46 A

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Praise the Lord in joyful song,
Praise Him, Praise Him all day long.
But what of me, I cannot sing;
I have no melody to bring?
Then read again, oh joy of joys,
The Lord said, "Make a joyful noise."


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/23/12 2:25 A

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The Piranha Hour

We used to call 5:00 p.m. the “piranha hour.” It was that time of day when our girl s all wanted a piece of mom at the same time. And I, the ever-loving, ever-sensitive husband, wanted Denalyn to drop everything and talk to me about my day. When is your piranha hour? When do people in your world demand much and offer little?

Jesus teaches us how to live through them successfully. When hands extended and voices demanded, Jesus responded with love. He did so because the code within him disarmed the clock.

The code is worth noting: “People are precious.” He gave sight to eyes that would lust. He healed hands that would kill. Many of those he healed would never say “thank you” but he healed them anyway.

God’s goodness is spurred by His nature—not by our worthiness. He knows the value of people!

“…but the crowds learned about [what Jesus was doing] and followed him. He welcomed them and spoke to them about the kingdom of God, and healed those who needed healing. Luke 9:11″

From In the Eye of the Storm by Max Lucado

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/21/12 7:57 P

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Christ Jesus, our Saviour and Lord

While pondering Christ Jesus, our Saviour and Lord,
We must in great reverence remember His word.
Gethsemane's silence keeps secret His pain,
But for our deliverance our Messiah was slain.
The suffering which saves us and opens the Door
Will bring us Salvation and Life evermore.
He knows our afflictions, He knows all our grief,
And if we are faithful, we'll soon find relief.
Relieved from our struggles, our sorrows, our cares-
Our hearts will grow fonder the more frequent our prayers.
So let us remember, with hearts turned to Him,
To watch for the Knock so that He may come in.
Or, like the five virgins in foolish repose,
We cannot see the Bridegroom; the Doors are now closed.


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/19/12 7:27 A

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God Sees Value
-
Oct 03, 2012 10:01 pm
Today's MP3

Alicia only weighs 22 pounds and is much shorter than children her age. She suffers from progeria—a genetic aging disease that strikes one child in 8-million. She’s bald. Her hearing is bad. Her stamina is that of an old person. And she’s only ten.

Mostly, she’s patient with the constant curiosity. But at times it gets to be too much for her mother and she lashes out. Who could blame her? Such is the nature of parental love—a love regardless of imperfections. Not because the parent is blind. Just the opposite. They see vividly. She sees Alicia’s inability as clearly as anyone. But she also sees Alicia’s value.

So does God! God sees us with the eyes of a Father. He sees our defects, errors, and blemishes. But He also sees our value. Each human being is a treasure. A source of joy!

“When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began teaching them many things. Mark 6:34″

From In the Eye of the Storm

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/18/12 9:12 A

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Completely Human
-
When a bookstore owner told me a woman had stomped into his shop, angry, slamming one of my books on the counter, I knew exactly what he was talking about. I wrote that Jesus may have had pimples. He may have had bony knees. But I said, “One thing’s for sure, he was, while completely divine, completely human.”

There’s something safe about a God who never had calluses. There’s something majestic about a God who never scraped his elbow. But there’s also something cold about a God who cannot relate to what you and I feel.

Rejection? He felt it. Temptation? He knew it. Loneliness? He experienced it. Death? He tasted it. And stress? He could write a best-selling book about it.

Why did he do it? One reason. So that when you hurt, you’ll go to him and let him heal you!

“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Hebrews 4:15.”

From In the Eye of the Storm by Max Lucado

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/17/12 7:00 A

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Forgiveness Bubbles

Thanks for listening to me, God
I need to talk to you
I know you love your children, Lord
No matter what they do

And though I try to do my best
I know I always should -
But I'm not perfect or grown up
Sometimes I'm not quite good

Right now my heart is cold and stained
With dirt and grime and sin
I need forgiveness bubbles, please
To make it clean again

If you wash my heart again
And rinse away the stain
The wicked things I've said and done
Will go right down the drain

My heart feels very dirty, God -
Won't you please scrub it bright?
When you forgive me once again
My heart will be snow white

Please help me keep my heart clean, Lord
And teach me to do right
Help me keep my heart forever
Shinny penny bright

But if I happen to mess up
And need another scrub
I know you won't forget me, God
Just plop me in your tub!

Lots of folks don't understand
Forgiveness from above
They don't know how my heart feels
When it is bathed in love

When I am sorry, you forgive
The problem doesn't matter
When my heart is brand-new clean
My ugly feelings scatter

I'm growing up, and as I do
You'll help me through my troubles
I won't outgrow my love for you
And your forgiveness bubbles


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/15/12 11:09 P

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THIS IS AN OLDIE BUT A GOODIE

Saying the Lord's Prayer

Matthew 6:9-13

(person)- 'Our Father which art in heaven...'

(God)---Yes?

(person)- Don't interrupt me. I'm praying.

(God)---But you called me.

(person)-Called you? I didn't call you. I'm praying. "Our Father which art in heaven..."

(God)---There you did it again.

(person)-Did what?

(God)---Called me. You said, "Our Father which art in heaven." Here I am...What's on your mind?

(person)-But I didn't mean anything by it. I was, you know, just saying my prayers for the day. I always say the Lord's Prayer. It makes me feel good, kind of like getting a duty done.

(God)---All right. Go on.

(person)-"Hallowed be thy name..."

(God)---Hold it. What do you mean by that?

(person) By what?

(God)---By "hallowed be thy name"?

(person)-It means... it means... Good grief, I don't know what it means. How should I know? It's just a part of the prayer. By the way, what does it mean?

(God)---It means honored, holy, wonderful.

(person)-Hey, that makes sense. I never thought about what "hallowed" meant before. "Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven."

(God)---Do you really mean that?

(person)-Sure, why not?

(God)---What are you doing about it?

(person)-Doing? Nothing, I guess. I just think it would be kind of neat if you got control of everything down here like you have up there.

(God)---Have I got control of you?

(person)-Well, I go to church.

(God)---That isn't what I asked you. What about your bad temper? You've really got a problem there, you know. And then there's the way you spend your money---all on yourself. And what about the kind of books you read?

(person)-Stop picking on me! I'm just as good as some of the rest of those people at the church.

(God)---Excuse me. I thought you were praying for my will to be done. If that is to happen, it will have to start with the ones who are praying for it. Like you, for example.

(person)-Oh, all right. I guess I do have some hang-ups. Now that you mention it, I could probably name some others.

(God)---So could I.

(person)-I haven't thought about it very much until now, but I really would like to cut out some of those things. I would like to, you know, be really free.

(God)---Good. Now we're getting somewhere. We'll work together, you and I. Some victories can truly be won. I'm proud of you.

(person)-Look, Lord, I need to finish up here. This is taking a lot longer than it usually does. "Give us this day, our daily bread."

(God)---You need to cut out the bread. You're overweight as it is.

(person)-Hey, wait a minute! What is this, "Criticize me day"? Here I was doing my religious duty, and all of a sudden you break in and remind me of all my hang-ups.

(God)---Praying is a dangerous thing. You could wind up changed, you know. That's what I'm trying to get across to you. You called me, and here I am. It's too late to stop now. Keep praying, I'm interested in the next part of your prayer...(pause).

Well, go on.

(person)-I'm scared to.

(God)---Scared? Of what?

(person)-I know what you'll say.

(God)---Try me and see.

(person)-"Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us."

(God)---What about Ann?

(person)-See? I knew it! I knew you would bring her up! Why, Lord, she's told lies about me, spread stories about my family. She never paid back the debt she owes me. I've sworn to get even with her!

(God)---But your prayer? What about your prayer?

(person)-I didn't mean it.

(God)---Well, at least you're admitting it. But it's not much fun carrying that load of bitterness around inside, is it?

(person)-No. But I'll feel better as soon as I get even. Boy, have I got some plans for that neighbor. She'll wish she had never moved into this neighborhood.

(God)---You won't feel any better. You'll feel worse. Revenge isn't sweet. Think of how unhappy you already are. But I can change all that.

(person)-You can? How?

(God)---Forgive Ann. Then I'll forgive you. Then the hate and sin will be Ann's problem and not yours. You will have settled your heart.

(person)-Oh, you're right. You always are. And more than I want to revenge Ann, I want to be right with you....(pause)...(sigh). All right. All right. I forgive her. Help her to find the right road in life, Lord. She's bound to be awfully miserable now that I think about it. Anybody who goes around doing the things she does to others has to be out of it. Someway, somehow, show her the right way.

(God)---There now! Wonderful! How do you feel?

(person)-Hmmm. Well, not bad. Not bad at all. In fact, I feel pretty great! You know, I don't think I'll have to go to bed uptight tonight for the first time since I can remember. Maybe I won't be so tired from now on because I'm not getting enough rest.

(God)---You're not through with your prayer. Go on.

(person)-Oh, all right. "And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil."

(God)---Good! Good! I'll do that. Just don't put yourself in a place where you can be tempted.

(person)-What do you mean by that?

(God)---Don't turn on the TV when you know the laundry needs to be done and the house needs to be picked up. Also, about the time you spend coffee-ing with your friends, if you can't influence the conversation to positive things, perhaps you should re-think the value of those friendships. Another thing, your neighbors and friends shouldn't be your standard for "keeping up". And please don't use me for an escape hatch.

(person)-I don't understand the last part.

(God)---Sure you do. You've done it a lot of times. You get caught in a bad situation. You get into trouble and then you come running to me, "Lord, help me out of this mess, and I promise you I'll never do it again." You remember some of those bargains you tried to make with me?

(person)-Yes, and I'm ashamed, Lord. I really am. (God)---Which bargain are you remembering?

(person)-Well, there was the night that the children and I were home alone. The wind was blowing so hard I thought the roof would go any minute and tornado warnings were out. I remember praying, "Oh, God, if you spare us, I'll never skip my devotions again."

(God) --Did you?

(person)-I'm sorry, Lord, I really am. Up until now I thought that if I just prayed the Lord's Prayer every day, then I could do what I liked. I didn't expect anything to happen like it did.

(God)---Go ahead and finish your prayer.

(person)-"For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever." Amen

(God)---Do you know what would bring me glory? What would really make me happy?

(person)-No, but I'd like to know. I want now to please you. I can see what a mess I've made of my life. And I can see how great it would be to really be one of your followers.

(God)---You just answered the question.

(person)-I did?

(God)---Yes. The thing that would bring me glory is to have people like you truly love me. And I see that happening between us. Now that some of these old sins are exposed and out of the way, well, there is no telling what we can do together.

(person) - Lord, let's see what we can make of me, OK? Amen!


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/14/12 2:48 A

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Jesus Knows How You Feel

Remember when you sought a night’s rest and got a colicky baby? When you sought to catch up at the office and got even further behind? Or that leisurely Saturday when you ended up fixing the sink? Take comfort, friend. Jesus knows how you feel!

You may have trouble believing that. Can God relate to the hassles and headaches of my life? Of your life?

Hebrews 4:15 says, “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are, yet was without sin.”

When you tell God that you’ve reached your limit, He knows what you mean. When you shake your head at impossible deadlines; when your plans are interrupted by people who have other plans; he nods in sympathy. He’s been there!

Jesus knows how you feel!

From In the Eye of the Storm by Max Lucado

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/11/12 11:28 P

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Diligence Rules

“Diligent hands will rule, but laziness ends in slave labor” (Proverbs 12:24).

How hard do you work, or do you hardly work? God said to Adam, “Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food” (Genesis 3:17, 19). And He explained to Moses, “Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work” (Exodus 20:9–10).

Has our culture become accustomed to receiving good things without great effort? Who is entitled to influence without being industrious? Perhaps there is a dearth of diligence that has depressed people and economies. Laziness leads to the control of others, while honest labor is given opportunities and advancement. Do not despair in your diligence for you are set for success. Mind your business meticulously, and you will enjoy the business.

“Now the man Jeroboam was a valiant warrior, and when Solomon saw that the young man was industrious, he appointed him over all the forced labor of the house of Joseph” (1 Kings 11:28 NASB).

Indeed, intense industry leads to preferment. Your faithfulness to your work is not going unnoticed. Your diligence is a distinctive that separates you from the average or lazy laborer. Security comes with this level of service. Promotion follows performance that produces the right results the right way. Be an industrious example others seek to emulate.

Lastly, the Lord blesses hands that are hard at work. He smiles when He sees your service exceeds expectations. You go the extra mile to make sure others are cared for as you would like to be treated. God knows, because of your thoroughness on the job and your integrity in its execution, you can be trusted with more.

“The elders who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of double honor, especially those whose work is preaching and teaching” (1 Timothy 5:17).

Prayer: Lord, what task do You desire that I diligently complete before beginning another?

Related Readings: 1 Kings 12:20; Proverbs 10:4; Romans 12:8; 1 Timothy 4:15

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/10/12 11:32 P

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When I Speak Your Name in Prayer

I'd like to sit you down and tell you everything's okay
And have the strength enough to pull you through another day
I'd like to help you to believe that this will be all right
And that you will not have to spend another sleepless night

I'd like to hold your hand and wipe the teardrops from your eyes
And help you just to sort things out while you question why
I'd like to try and lift the load and carry it for you
And truly help you understand just what you're going through

I'd like to have the words to make this trouble disappear
And give you peace of mind so you won't shed another tear
I'd like to have the magic touch to take away your pain
And help you see the blue sky just beyond this blinding rain

But sometimes what we say or do just cannot be enough
To ease another's passage through a trail so dark and rough
There is one thing I know will help much more than I can say
And rest assured that I will do it when I kneel to pray

I will take your name before the Father as I seek His face
And ask Him to enfold you in His arms of warm embrace
There's no one who can comfort you quite like the Father can
And surely carry you across this dark and frightening span

Although, I dearly care for you and want to help so much
I know that what you really need is in the Father's touch
So, I will take you to the throne and leave you in His care
I know He will deliver, when I speak your name in prayer


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/9/12 11:57 P

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In a Storm

Today's MP3

Chippie the parakeet never saw it coming! One second perched peacefully. The next—whoosh—sucked into the vacuum cleaner hose! The bird owner turned off the vacuum, opened the bag. There was Chippie—still alive, but stunned! Chippie doesn’t sing much anymore. Blown over, sucked in, it’s enough to steal the song from the stoutest heart.

Can you relate? Most of us can. One minute you’re seated in familiar territory, a song on your lips, then. . .the rejection letter arrives. The doctor calls. The divorce papers are delivered. You’re sucked into a black cavern of doubts. Left with a long night of fear and a long list of questions. Jesus knows we’re in a storm. Why doesn’t he come?

The same voice that stilled the rage on the Sea of Galilee can still the storm in your world. Be assured—He is closer than you’ve ever dreamed!

Psalm 145:18 says “The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.”
From In the Eye of the Storm from Max Lucado

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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emoticon

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/8/12 9:09 A

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emoticon for sharing!

“Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.” – Carl Bard





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I HOPE YOU READ THIS. IT IS REALLY TOUCHING.

The Shoe Man

My alarm went off
It was Sunday again.
I was sleepy and tired
My one day to sleep in.
But the guilt I would feel
The rest of the day
Would have been too much
So I'd go and I'd pray.

I showered and shaved
I adjusted my tie.
I got there and sat
In a pew just in time.
Bowing my head in prayer
As I closed my eyes.
I saw the shoe of the man next to me
Touching my own. I sighed.
With plenty of room on either side
I thought, "Why must our soles touch?"
It bothered me, his shoe touching mine
But it didn't bother him much.

A prayer began: "Our Father"...

I thought, "This man with the shoes
has no pride.
They're dusty, worn, and scratched
Even worse, there are holes on the side!"

"Thank You for blessings," the prayer went on.

The shoe man said
a quiet "Amen."
I tried to focus on the prayer
But my thoughts were on his shoes again.
Aren't we supposed to look our best
When walking through that door?
"Well, this certainly isn't it," I thought,
Glancing toward the floor.

Then the prayer was ended
And the songs of praise began.
The shoe man was certainly loud
Sounding proud as he sang.
His voice lifted the rafters
His hands were raised high.
The Lord could surely hear
The shoe man's voice from the sky.

It was time for the offering
And what I threw in was steep.
I watched as the shoe man reached
Into his pockets so deep.
I saw what was pulled out
What the shoe man put in.
Then I heard a soft "clink"
as when silver hits tin.

The sermon really bored me
To tears, and that's no lie
It was the same for the shoe man
For tears fell from his eyes.
At the end of the service
As is the custom here
We must greet new visitors
And show them all good cheer.

But I felt moved somehow
And wanted to meet the shoe man
So after the closing prayer
I reached over and shook his hand.
He was old and his skin was dark
And his hair was truly a mess
But I thanked him for coming
For being our guest.

He said, "My names' Charlie
I'm glad to meet you, my friend."
There were tears in his eyes
But he had a large, wide grin
"Let me explain," he said
Wiping tears from his eyes.
"I've been coming here for months
And you're the first to say 'Hi.'"

"I know that my appearance
Is not like all the rest
"But I really do try
To always look my best.
"I always clean and polish my shoes
Before my very long walk.
"But by the time I get here
They're dirty and dusty, like chalk."

My heart filled with pain
and I swallowed to hide my tears
As he continued to apologize
For daring to sit so near.
He said, "When I get here
I know I must look a sight.
"But I thought if I could touch you
Then maybe our souls might unite."

I was silent for a moment
Knowing whatever was said
Would pale in comparison
I spoke from my heart, not my head.

"Oh, you've touched me," I said,
"And taught me, in part;
"That the best of any man
Is what is found in his heart."

The rest, I thought,
This shoe man will never know.
Like just how thankful I really am
That his dirty old shoe touched my soul


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/6/12 11:25 P

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A Man Named Jesus

One day I met a man named Jesus
And he told me He's God's only son
He said he is the way, truth and life
And he died on the cross for everyone.

He said he has the keys to hell
And has victory over the grave
He said all power is in his hands
And if I believed I could be saved.

I wondered why he ever cared about me
Since I had done so many awful sins
But he told me he would wash them all away
And still be my very best friend.

He said his home is in heaven right now
But he is coming back to earth once again
The reason he was raised from the dead
Was to live in the hearts of faithful men.


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/6/12 3:21 A

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Not Just Mercy, but Grace
-
Sep 25, 2012 10:01 pm
Today's MP3

We are poor, spiritually for sure; monetarily, perhaps. We’ve buried our dreams, desires, and aspirations. Like the mother with Lupus or the businessman in the unemployment line, we’re out of options.

Yet Christ approached us “while we were yet sinners!” “Will you cover us?” we asked him, and Grace smiled.

Not just mercy, mind you, but grace. Grace goes beyond mercy. Mercy gave the prodigal son a second chance. Grace threw him a party. Mercy prompted the Samaritan to bandage the wounds of the victim. Grace prompted him to leave his credit card as payment for the victim’s care. Mercy forgave the thief on the cross. Grace escorted him into paradise.

Mercy pardons us. Grace woos and weds us. Grace does this. God does this. Grace is God walking into your world with a sparkle in his eye and an offer that’s hard to resist!

“Because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. Ephesians 2:4-5″

From GRACE by Max Lucado

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/5/12 12:08 A

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My Hope is in Jesus Christ

Through life I've sang Salvation's song
I've had my ups and downs
I've tried my best to do no wrong
But still I've raised some frowns

I love my God with heart and soul
Though still I feel some pain
Christ washed me clean He made me whole
I'm free and born again

By grace, I'm in Salvation's hand
In Christ my life is new
Through faith I've learned to understand
That Jesus' love is true

Within my Lord I'm more than glad
We talk both night and day
I seek His joy when feeling sad
And for His peace I pray

I'm growing old my hair is white
My blood is running thin
But praise the Lord for giving Light
And freeing me of sin

The world may say my life is through
Now soon I'll see my grave
Yet while I'm here I'll share with you
That Christ is here to save

Although of aged flesh and bone
Of death I've no more fear
For Jesus changed this heart of stone
And came to dwell in here

Upon the Lord we can depend
Through Him we learn to cope
I'll stay in Christ until the end
In Him! I've placed my hope.


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/3/12 11:59 P

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The Center of the Bible

Q: What is the shortest chapter in the Bible?
A: Psalms 117

Q: What is the longest chapter in the Bible?
A: Psalms 119

Q: Which chapter is in the center of the Bible?
A: Psalms 118

Fact: There are 594 chapters before Psalms 118
Fact: There are 594 chapters after Psalms 118
Add these numbers up and you get 1188.

Q: What is the center verse in the Bible?
A: Psalms 118:8

Q: Does this verse say something significant about God's perfect will for our lives?

The next time someone says they would like to find God's perfect will for their lives and that they want to be in the center of His will, just send them to the center of His Word!

Psalms 118:8
"It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man." Now isn't that odd how this worked out (or was God in the center of it)?

When things get tough, always remember...
Faith doesn't get you around trouble, it gets you through it !!


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/3/12 12:15 A

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So Many Hurts
-
Today's MP3

If hurts were hairs—we’d all look like grizzlies!

So many hurts. When teachers ignore your work, their neglect hurts. When your girlfriend drops you, when your husband abandons you, when the company fires you, it hurts. Rejection always does. People bring pain.

Sometimes deliberately. Sometimes randomly.

So where do you turn? Hitman.com? Jim Beam and friends? Pity Party Catering Service? Retaliation has its appeal. But Jesus has a better idea!

Grace is not blind. It sees the hurt full well. But Grace chooses to see God’s forgiveness even more. Hebrews 12:15 asks us to, “See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.”

Where grace is lacking, bitterness abounds. Where grace abounds, forgiveness grows. Forgiveness may not happen all at once. But it can happen with you.

From GRACE by Max Lucado

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/1/12 11:06 P

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I Am a Christian

When I say ... "I am a Christian"
I'm not shouting, "I'm saved"
I'm whispering, "I get lost!"
"That is why I chose this way"

When I say ... "I am a Christian"
I don't speak of this with pride
I'm confessing that I stumble,
and need someone to be my guide

When I say ... "I am a Christian"
I'm not trying to be strong,
I'm professing that I'm weak,
and pray for strength to carry on

When I say ... "I am a Christian"
I'm not bragging of success,
I'm admitting that I've failed,
and cannot ever pay the debt

When I say ... "I am a Christian"
I'm not claiming to be perfect,
my flaws are way too visible
but God believes I'm worth it

When I say ... "I am a Christian"
I still feel the sting of pain
I have my share of heartaches
which is why I seek His Name

When I say ... "I am a Christian"
I do not wish to judge
I have no authority,
I only know I'm loved!


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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10/1/12 5:04 A

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Enough of This Frenzy
-
Today's MP3

Attempts at “self-salvation” guarantee nothing but exhaustion. We scamper and scurry, trying to please God, collecting merit badges and brownie points, and scowling at anyone who questions our accomplishments. The result? The weariest people on earth. We so fear failure that we create the image of perfection. Call us the church of hound-dog faces and slumped shoulders.

Stop it! Once and for all, enough of this frenzy!

Hebrews 13:9 tells us, “Your hearts should be strengthened by God’s grace, not by obeying rules.” Just the opposite.

In Matthew 11:28 Jesus promises: “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.”

There’s no fine print. A second shoe isn’t going to drop. God’s promise has no hidden language.

Let Grace happen. You have His unending affection. Stretch yourself out in the hammock of Grace. You can rest now!

From GRACE by Max Lucado

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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9/29/12 11:45 P

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Let Grace Happen
-
Today's MP3

I became a Christian about the same time I became a Boy Scout and made the assumption God grades on a merit system. Good scouts move up. Good people go to heaven.

I resolved to amass a multitude of spiritual badges. I worked toward the day when God, amid falling confetti and dancing cherubim, would drape my badge-laden sash across my chest, welcome me into his eternal kingdom, where I could humbly display my badges for eternity.

But some thorny questions surfaced. How good is good? What is the permitted percentage of exaggeration?

Ephesians 2:8 says: “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God.”

Unearned. A gift. Our merits merit nothing.

Let grace happen, for heaven’s sake. Of all the things you must earn in life, God’s unending affection is not one of them. You have it!

From GRACE by Max Lucado

IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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God's Pearls of Wisdom

You say: "It's impossible"
God says: All things are possible
(Luke 18:27)

You say: "I'm too tired"
God says: I will give you rest
(Matthew 11:28-30)

You say: "Nobody really loves me"
God says: I love you
(John 3:16 & John 3:34)

You say: "I can't go on"
God says: My grace is sufficient
(2 Corinthians 12:9 & Psalm 91:15)

You say: "I can't figure things out"
God says: I will direct your steps
(Proverbs 3:5-6)

You say: "I can't do it"
God says: You can do all things
(Philippians 4:13)

You say: "I'm not able"
God says: I am able
(2 Corinthians 9:8)

You say: "It's not worth it"
God says: It will be worth it
(Romans 8:28)

You say: "I can't forgive myself"
God says: I Forgive you
(I John 1:9 & Romans 8:1)

You say: "I can't manage"
God says: I will supply all your needs
(Philippians 4:19)

You say: "I'm afraid"
God says: I have not given you a spirit of fear
(2 Timothy 1:7)

You say: "I'm always worried and frustrated"
God says: Cast all your cares on ME
(I Peter 5:7)

You say: "I'm not smart enough"
God says: I give you wisdom
(I Corinthians 1:30)

You say: "I feel all alone"
God says: I will never leave you or forsake you
(Hebrews 13:5)


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IRENE FROM TEXAS
The Lord bless you
and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.
Numbers 6:22-26 (NIV)



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