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8/30/15 1:48 P

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Today’s Scripture
“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me...”
(Psalm 23:4, ESV)

Keep Walking Through Joel Osteen

Everyone faces challenges and difficulties in life. If you are going through a valley today, know that you are not alone. God is with you! He is working behind the scenes on your behalf, and He will carry you through. Remember, your challenges didn’t come to stay; they came to pass. Don’t get stuck in the valley by allowing your setbacks to become the focus of your life. Jesus endured the pain of the cross for the joy that was set before Him, and when you focus on your victory, you will be able to keep walking through your valley, too!

Shake off bitterness and self-pity today and be determined to press forward. With God on your side, no weapon formed against you shall prosper. As you keep an attitude of faith and expectancy, your challenges will become easier, and you will move forward and live the life of victory God has in store for you.


A Prayer for Today

“Father, thank You for Your faithfulness to me. Thank You for giving me strength during the difficult times. I trust that You are with me today, and I choose to focus on the victory You have in store in Jesus’ name. Amen


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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8/29/15 8:47 P

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Everything Needed for Joy

by Max Lucado • August 10

Robert had cerebral palsy. The disease kept him from riding a bike, or going for a walk. But it didn’t keep him from graduating from high school or attending university. Having cerebral palsy didn’t keep him from teaching at a Junior College or from venturing overseas on five missions trips. And Robert’s disease didn’t prevent him from becoming a missionary in Portugal.

He moved to Lisbon, alone. He rented a room, found a restaurant owner who fed him after the rush hour and a tutor who instructed him in the language. And daily in the park, he passed out booklets about Christ. Within six years he led seventy people to the Lord. I heard Robert speak. He could’ve asked for sympathy or pity. He did just the opposite. A Bible in his lap, he held his bent hand up in the air and boasted, “I have everything I need for joy.” So do we.

From The Applause of Heaven



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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8/28/15 10:17 A

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ONLY THE MEEK SHALL SEE
MAX LUCADO

A small cathedral outside Bethlehem marks the supposed birthplace of Jesus. Behind the altar is a cave, a little cavern lit by silver lamps. You can enter the main edifice and admire the ancient church. You can also enter the quiet cave where a star embedded in the floor recognizes the birth of the King. There is one stipulation, however. You have to stoop. The door is so low you can’t possibly go in standing up.

The same is true of the Christ. You can see the world standing tall, but to witness the Savior, you have to get on your knees. So while theologians consulted their commentaries, and the elite were looking around to see who was watching, the successful checking their calendars, the meek were kneeling. They were kneeling in front of Jesus. May God find you doing the same.

From The Applause of Heaven



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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8/27/15 10:07 P

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God Makes His Point

by Max Lucado • August 27

There are certain things everyone knows not to do. You don’t try to lasso a tornado. You don’t fight a lion with a toothpick. You don’t sneeze into the wind. You don’t go bear hunting with a cork gun. And you don’t send a shepherd boy to battle a giant. You don’t, that is, unless you’re out of options. Saul was. And it’s when we’re out of options that we are most ready for God’s surprises.

Was Saul ever surprised! The king tried to give David some equipment. What do you want, boy? Shield? Sword? Grenades? Rifles? A helicopter?” David had something else in mind. Five smooth stones and an ordinary leather sling. The soldiers gasped. Saul sighed. Goliath jeered. David swung. And God made His point. Anyone who underestimates what God can do with the ordinary has rocks in his head!

From The Applause of Heaven


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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8/26/15 5:13 P

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What Matters is Who God Is

by Max Lucado • August 26

When God announced Moses was to deliver the Israelites, Moses wasn’t convinced! God demonstrated that who Moses was didn’t matter. What mattered was who God was.

“Moses,” spoke the voice from the bush, “throw down your staff” (Exodus 4:3).

God you may not know…well, you don’t go around throwing down your staff. You never know when. . .

“Throw it down.”

When the rod became a snake, Moses began to run.

“Moses! Pick it up by the tail.”

God, out here, well, you don’t pick up snakes too often and never by the tail.

“Moses!”

Yessir!

As Moses touched the squirmy scales, it hardened. Moses lifted up the rod—the same rod he would lift up to divide the water and guide two million people through the desert. If God can do something with stubborn hearts and a stiff-necked people. . .he can do something with the common!

From The Applause of Heaven



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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8/25/15 4:16 P

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God Dancing Amidst the Common

by Max Lucado • August 25

There’s one word that describes the night Jesus came—ordinary. A beautiful night but nothing to keep a person awake. The sheep were ordinary. No fleece made of gold. No history makers. And the shepherds…peasants they were, probably wearing all the clothes they owned. You won’t find their staffs in a museum or their writings in a library. They were nameless and simple. And were it not for a God who loves to hook an “extra” on the front of ordinary, the night might have gone unnoticed.

But God dances amidst the common. And that night He did a waltz. The black sky exploded with brightness The night was ordinary no more. The angel came in the night because that’s when lights are best seen and most needed. God comes into the common for the same reason. His most powerful tools are the simplest.

From The Applause of Heaven


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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8/24/15 4:46 P

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Tender Moments

by Max Lucado • August 24

You don’t have to be brilliant to remember that a child is not an adult. Or a child psychologist to know that kids are “under construction.” Or possess the wisdom of Solomon to realize that they didn’t ask to be here in the first place. And that spilled milk can be wiped up and broken plates can be replaced.

I’m not a prophet, nor the son of one, but something tells me that in the whole scheme of things the tender moments with a child are infinitely more valuable than anything I do in front of a computer or a congregation. Something tells me that the moments of comfort I’ve given my children are a small price to pay for the joy of seeing my daughter do for her daughter what her dad did for her! Moments of comfort from a parent. They are the sweetest moments in a parent’s day! Make sure your child knows of your love and concern.

From The Applause of Heaven



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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8/23/15 10:07 P

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Joel Osteen

Today’s Scripture
“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.”
(Isaiah 40:29, NIV)

He Gives Strength

Have you ever felt backed into a corner about a particular situation, and you couldn’t see a way out? We’ve all felt overwhelmed at one time or another. Be encouraged today because the Bible says that when you cry to God for help He will hear you and answer you! He will give you strength when you are weary and power when you feel weak.

No matter what is going on in your life today, God is greater than any obstacle or difficulty you may be facing. Do you need strength to overcome a challenge in your life? Do you need power to stand strong in the midst of a storm? Call on Him and He will hear you. The answer is on the way while the words are still on your lips! Open your heart today, receive His strength, and let Him empower you to live in victory all the days of your life!


A Prayer for Today

“Father, thank You for hearing and answering my prayers. Fill me with Your strength and power today. I give You my whole heart and surrender to Your work in me in Jesus’ name. Amen.”



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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8/22/15 7:45 A

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Doing What Comes Naturally

by Max Lucado • August 22

My child’s feelings are hurt. I tell her she’s special. My child is afraid. I won’t go to sleep until she is secure. I’m not a hero. I’m a parent. When a child hurts, a parent does what comes naturally. He helps. As a father, I can tell you those moments are the sweetest in my day. They come naturally. They come willingly. They come joyfully.

If I know that one of the privileges of a father is to comfort a child, then why am I so reluctant to let my heavenly Father comfort me? Do I think he was just being poetic when he asked if the birds of the air and the grass of the field have a worry? And if they don’t, do I think God will? Why don’t I let my Father do for me what I’m more than willing to do for my children? Good question.

From The Applause of Heaven



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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8/21/15 4:07 A

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The Two-Letter Word “IF”

by Max Lucado • August 21

The prison of pride is filled with self-made people, determined to pull themselves up by their own bootstraps even if they land on their rear ends! To the prideful it doesn’t matter what they did or to whom they did it or where they’ll end up– it only matters that I did it my way. You’ve seen the prisoners. The alcoholic who won’t admit his drinking problem. The woman who refuses to talk to anyone about her fears. Perhaps to see such a person all you have to do is look in the mirror.

The Bible says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just. . .” (1 John 1:9). The biggest word in Scripture just might be that two-letter one, IF. Justification…rationalization…comparison…t
hese are tools of the jailbird. But Jesus says, “Blessed are those who mourn. . .” (Matthew 5:4). You see, true blessedness begins with deep sadness.

From The Applause of Heaven


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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8/20/15 9:07 P

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A Clear Message

by Max Lucado • 8/20/2015

As long as Jesus is one of many options, He is no option. As long as you can carry your burdens alone, you don’t need a burden bearer. As long as your situation brings you no grief, you will receive no comfort. As long as you can take him or leave him, you might as well leave him because Jesus won’t be taken half-heartedly.

Jesus said, “Blessed are those who mourn. . .” (Matthew 5:4). When you get to the point of sorrow for your sins, when you admit that you have no other option but to cast all your cares on him, and when there is truly no other name that you can call, then do as Jesus said to do. “Cast all your cares on him because he cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7). And he’s waiting for you in the midst of the storm!

From The Applause of Heaven



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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8/19/15 2:10 A

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Twice Imprisoned

by Max Lucado • August 18

My friend, Anibal was guilty. Period. I met him in Brazil. I also met my friend Daniel who had given Anibal a Bible. And he took me with him to tell Anibal about Jesus. We centered on the cross. We talked about guilt, and forgiveness. His heart was touched as we discussed heaven, a hope no executioner could take from him. But as we discussed conversion, Anibal’s face hardened. He had never backed down before any man, and he wasn’t about to do it now.

“Don’t you want to go to heaven?” I asked. “Sure,” he grunted. But the eyes that met mine weren’t tear-filled— they were the eyes of an angry prisoner. Twice imprisoned. Once because of murder, and once because of stubbornness. Jesus said, Blessed are those who know they’re in trouble and have enough sense to admit it (Matthew 5:5). Anibal didn’t want to…but my prayer is that we will.

From The Applause of Heaven



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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8/18/15 5:37 A

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A New Name

by Max Lucado • August 17

Show a man his failures without Jesus, and the result will be found in the roadside gutter. Give a man religion without reminding him of his filth, and the result will be arrogance in a three-piece suit. But get the two in the same heart—get sin to meet Savior and Savior to meet sin—and the result just might be another Pharisee turned preacher who sets the world on fire.

Saul to Paul. The apostle Paul never took a course in missions. He never read a book on church growth. He was just inspired by the Holy Spirit and punch-drunk on the love that makes the impossible possible: salvation. He called on Jesus’ name—and His name only. He got a new name and, even more, a new life. May the same happen again.

From The Applause of Heaven



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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8/17/15 2:34 A

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Cast your cares by Joel Osteen

Today’s Scripture
“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
(1 Peter 5:7, NIV)

Cast Your Cares

God cares so much about you today. Not only does He love and care about you, He cares about the things that you care about as well. If you have concerns, worry or anxiety about something in your life today; finances, relationships, your job or anything else, know that your heavenly Father already has a plan to take care of those things for you. It’s a good plan, and He wants to show Himself strong on your behalf.

The Scripture reminds us that the lilies of the field and the birds of the air are cared for, how much more will your heavenly Father take care of you? Today, cast all of your anxiety on Him by choosing to trust that He is going to take care of you. Refuse to dwell on your problems and don’t allow them to steal your peace and joy any longer. Instead, choose to meditate on His Word and confess God’s promises over your life. Cast your cares on Him and experience His peace, joy and blessing all the days of your life!


A Prayer for Today

“Father, thank You for caring for me. I choose today to cast my cares on You and trust that You are working behind the scenes on my behalf. I bless and magnify You in my life today and always in Jesus’ name. Amen.”



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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8/16/15 4:26 A

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Separate yourself by Joel Osteen.

Today’s Scripture
“So whoever cleanses himself [from what is ignoble and unclean, who separates himself...] will [then himself] be a vessel set apart and useful for honorable and noble purposes...”
(2 Timothy 2:21, AMP)

Separate Yourself

Are there people or activities in your life that you know you need to separate yourself from? The Bible says that bad company will corrupt good morals. God wants you to constantly be growing and rising higher in life. That’s why this verse encourages us to separate ourselves from corrupting influences. Bad influences are more than just the people in your life—it can be anything that wrongly influences your thinking.

Be careful about what you are allowing into your mind. Be careful about what you read and what you watch on TV or the internet. Don’t give your attention to things that are going to drag you down. Choose to separate yourself today. Remember, God wants you to live an abundant life. He wants you be separate so that He can work through you and fulfill His purposes in your life!


A Prayer for Today

“Father, thank You for Your Word which is the truth that sets me free. Give me strength to separate myself from anything that does not honor You in Jesus’ name. Amen.”



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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8/15/15 5:46 A

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God Has Done It

by Max Lucado • August 14

The rich young ruler. He’s rich, powerful. Just ask him. He knows where he’s going. But today he has a question. Calling on this carpenter’s son for help must be awkward. “Teacher,” he asks, “what good thing must I do to get eternal life” (Matthew 19:16)? How much do I need to invest to be certain of my return?

Jesus’ answer is intended to make the young man wince. “Obey the commandments.”

“Hey,” he grins, I’ve obeyed all of these.”

Jesus gets to the point. “If you want to be perfect, go sell your possessions, give to the poor and you’ll have treasures in heaven” (Matthew 19:21). The statement leaves the young man distraught. It wasn’t the money that hindered the rich man—it was the self-sufficiency. God does for his children what they can’t do for themselves. This was the message of Paul: “For what the law was powerless to do—God did” (Romans 8:3).

From The Applause of Heaven





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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8/14/15 5:48 A

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Hope Comes from Him

God is constantly planting seeds of hope and victory in your life. He’s constantly speaking to your heart and encouraging faith. Often times, when we’re anxious and worried, it’s difficult to hear His voice of hope and confidence. But when we stop and quiet ourselves, when we find rest in Him, we can more easily recognize His voice of hope.

The Bible says that faith gives substance to the things we hope for. In other words, your hope gives your faith something to work toward. Hope is the foundation for your faith.

If the cares of this world have left you frustrated and empty, make the decision right now to open your heart and allow the Lord to deposit His hope on the inside of you. It doesn’t matter what you are facing today or what’s happened in your past, there is hope for the future. Believe it and receive it today! Hope comes from Him!


A Prayer for Today

“Father, thank You for the gift of hope. I receive it by faith today. Thank You for lifting me up into heavenly places with You. Use me for Your glory and show me how to be a vessel of hope to those who are around me today in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

By Joel Osteen

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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8/13/15 3:13 P

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The Beginning of Joy

by Max Lucado • August 13

In Matthew 11:28 Jesus says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and I will give you rest.” You’ve been there. You’re turned your back on the noise and sought his voice. You’ve stepped away from the masses and followed the Master as he led you up the winding path to the summit. His summit. Clean air. Clear view. Crisp breeze. The roar of the marketplace is down there, and the perspective of the peak is up here. Gently he invited you to sit on the rock and look out with him at the ancient peaks that will never erode.

Just remember, he says, you’ll go nowhere tomorrow that I haven’t already been. Truth will still triumph. Death will still die. The victory is still yours. And delight is one decision away—seize it! Joy begins by breathing deep up there before you go crazy down here!

From The Applause of Heaven



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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8/12/15 12:20 P

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Divine Wisdom

by Max Lucado • August 12

When I was ten, my mother enrolled me in piano lessons. Spending afternoons tethered to a piano bench was a torture just one level away from swallowing broken glass. Some of the music I enjoyed. I hammered the staccatos. But I could never understand the rest. The zigzagged command to do nothing. Nothing! What sense does that make? Why sit and pause when you can pound? “Because,” my teacher patiently explained, “music is always sweeter after a rest.”

Divine wisdom. In fact, it reminds me of the convictions of another Teacher. Before He went to the masses, Christ went to the mountain. Before the disciples encountered the crowds, they encountered the Christ. And before they faced the people, they were reminded of the sacred! Is it time for you to rest?

From The Applause of Heaven



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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8/11/15 2:07 P

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A Radical Reconstrution

by Max Lucado • August 11

God promises a special blessing. A sacred delight. It’s not a gimmick to give goose bumps or a mental attitude that has to be pumped up. No, Matthew 5 describes God’s radical reconstruction of the heart. Observe the sequence in the Beatitudes. We recognize we are in need—we’re poor in spirit. Next, we repent of our self-sufficiency—we mourn. We quit calling the shots—we’re meek. We are so grateful for his presence that we yearn for more—we hunger and thirst. We forgive others—we’re merciful. We change our outlook—we’re pure in heart. We love others—we’re peacemakers. We endure injustice—we’re persecuted.

It’s no casual shift of attitude. It is a demolition of the old and a creation of the new. The more radical the change, the greater the joy. And it is worth every effort, for this is the joy of God! A special blessing….a sacred delight.

From The Applause of Heaven



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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8/10/15 2:41 A

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A Cure for the High and Mighty

by Max Lucado • August 6

God doesn’t dislike arrogance…he hates it. Could he state it any clearer than Proverbs 8:13: “I hate pride and arrogance.” And then a few chapters later it says God can’t stomach arrogance or pretense. Believe me, he’ll put those upstarts in their place. You don’t want God to do that. It’s far wiser to descend the mountain than fall from it!

Pursue humility. Humility doesn’t mean you think less of yourself but that you think of yourself less. Paul described it in Romans 12:3, “Don’t cherish exaggerated ideas of yourself or your importance, but try to have a sane estimate of your capabilities by the light of the faith that God has given to you.” God has a cure for the high and mighty: come down from the mountain before he employs it. You’ll be amazed what you hear and who you see. And you’ll breathe a whole lot easier!

From Facing Your Giants



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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8/9/15 10:03 A

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How’s Your Marriage

by Max Lucado • August 7

How’s your marriage? On your wedding day, God loaned you an intricately crafted, precisely formed masterpiece. He entrusted you with a one-of-a-kind creation. Value her. Honor him. Some men collect wives as trophies; a means for pleasure, instead of a part of God’s plan. Don’t make this mistake. Be fiercely loyal to one spouse. Fiercely loyal. Don’t even look twice at someone else. No flirting. No teasing. No loitering at her desk or lingering in his office. Who cares if you come across as rude or a prude? You’ve made a promise. Keep it.

Your spouse is not your trophy but your treasure. Make your wife the object of your highest devotion. Make your husband the recipient of your deepest passion. Love the one who wears your ring. Make her, make him your giant-size privilege, your towering priority!

From Facing Your Giants



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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Joel Osteen

Today’s Scripture
“Then the LORD said to him, ‘What is that in your hand?’...”
(Exodus 4:2, NIV
What’s in Your Hand?
Do you ever feel inadequate for what you are called to do? You’re not the first one! So often, when we think of Moses, we remember him as the great spiritual giant who led the Israelites out of captivity. But did you know that Moses doubted himself, too? He didn’t feel equipped. In fact, he was even self-conscious because he had a stuttering problem! God simply said to him, “What do you have in your hand?” In the next few moments, God showed Moses that it didn’t matter what equipment he thought he needed. The God of the universe can take what you have and turn it into whatever it needs to be in order for you to accomplish what you’ve been called to.

So what’s in your hand today? It may not seem like much, but God wants to use it. He wants to take you to places you never dreamed. He wants to pour out His blessing and favor so you can live the abundant life He has in store for you!

A Prayer for Today
“Father, today I release to You all that I am and everything that I have. I invite You to flood every part of my being and use me for Your glory. Thank You for using what is in my hand in Jesus name. Amen.”

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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Keep Waiting—God is at Work

by Max Lucado • June 25

I’m convinced the Sabbath was created for frantic souls like me, people who need a weekly reminder that the world will not stop if I do.

In one of the most dramatic examples of waiting in the Bible, Daniel prays for people who had been oppressed for seventy years. He abstained from food and drink for twenty-one days, as he labored in prayer, persisted, pleaded, and agonized. No response. On the twenty-second day an angel of God appeared. He revealed to Daniel that his prayer had been heard on the first day.

From an earthly perspective, nothing was happening. But from a heavenly perspective a battle was raging in the heavens. God was working! What if Daniel had given up…lost faith…or walked away from God? Consider these better questions: What if you give up? Lose faith? Walk away? Don’t! God is at work. Keep waiting!

From You’ll Get Through This

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 Doing What’s Best for Us

by Max Lucado • June 23

God is at work in each of us whether we know it or not, whether we want it or not. Lamentations 3:33 says, “He takes no pleasure in making life hard, in throwing roadblocks in the way.” He doesn’t delight in our sufferings, but He delights in our development. It’s what Paul pointed out in Philippians 1:6, “God began doing a good work in you, and I am sure He will continue it until it is finished when Jesus Christ comes again.”

Don’t see your struggle as an interruption to life but as preparation for life. No one said the road would be easy or painless. But God will use this mess for something good. This trouble you are in isn’t punishment; it’s training, the normal experience of children. God is doing what’s best for us, training us to live God’s holy best!

From You’ll Get Through This

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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Today’s Pop Quiz

by Max Lucado • June 22

Each day has a pop quiz. And some seasons are final exams. Brutal, sudden pitfalls of stress, sickness, or sadness. What is the purpose of the test? James 1:3-4 says, “For when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be strong in character and ready for anything.”

God hasn’t forgotten you. Just the opposite. He has chosen to train you. The Hebrew verb for test comes from a word that means “to take a keen look at; to choose.” Dismiss the notion that God does not see your struggle. On the contrary, God is fully engaged. He is the Teacher; we are the students. Trust His training. You’ll get through this. He can make something good out of your mess!

From You’ll Get Through This

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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They are Watching

by Max Lucado • April 23

Seekers may not understand all that happens in a house of worship. They may not understand the meaning of a song or the significance of communion, but they know joy when they see it. By the way, wouldn’t the opposite be equally true? What happens when a seeker sees boredom on your face? Others are worshiping and you’re scowling? Others are seeking God’s face while you’re seeking the face of your watch?

As long as I’m getting personal—parents, what are your children learning from your worship? Do they see the same excitement as when you go to a baseball game? Do they see you hungry to see the face of your Father? Or do they see you content to leave the way you came? They’re watching. Believe me…they are watching! May I urge you to be just like Jesus…and prepare your heart for worship.

From Just Like Jesus

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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Joel Osteen

Today’s Scripture
“The mind of man plans his way, but the LORD directs his steps.”
(Proverbs 16:9, NASB)

He Directs Your Steps
What are you doing to bring your dreams to pass? Are you getting prepared? Do you have clear direction? Are you taking steps of faith? Success is intentional. You may not know what steps to take right now, but God has a good plan for your life. If you’ll do your part to seek Him and begin to make plans to succeed, God will guide you. He will direct your steps. You don’t have to vaguely go through life. God wants to show you His plan. He wants to pour out His blessing on you and see you living a life of victory.

Decide today to make plans to succeed. Write down your goals. Make time to evaluate where you are in life. Evaluate your finances, your career and your relationships. Don’t go another week without having a plan for your future. Evaluate how you’re spending your time and money. If you’ll go beyond dreaming and start making plans to succeed, God promises that He’s going to direct your steps. He will lead you down the path of His favor.

A Prayer for Today
“Father, thank You for ordering my steps. Help me to see clearly the plan You have for me today and every day. I submit every area of my life to You and trust that You are working behind the scenes for my good in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

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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Today’s Scripture
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”
(2 Corinthians 5:17, NIV)

New Creation
Everyone loves to get something new. But as a believer in Jesus, you’re not only getting something new, you are something new. You are a brand new creation! Your eternal being, the spirit on the inside of you, is re-created in Christ. The old is gone, the new has come.

The Bible also talks about working out our salvation. That means you have to retrain your body and mind to act, think, speak and live according to the new spirit within you instead of the old habits you used to have. Don’t ever get stuck in a rut thinking, “I’ll never change...that’s just the way I am.” No, the Bible says that the Spirit of God aids us in our weakness. He gives us strength to overcome. He empowers us to live as more than conquerors.

Is there something you want to change in your life today? Remember, you are a new creation in Christ. You are empowered to overcome. You are equipped to walk in the new, abundant life the Lord has in store for you!

A Prayer for Today
“Father, thank You for making me a new creation. Thank You for empowering me to live as an overcomer. I give this day to You and ask You to help me fully understand the plan You have for me in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

Joel Osteen

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 is Not Sometimes Sovereign

by Max Lucado • June 19

This season in which you find yourself may puzzle you, but it does not bewilder God. He can and will use it for His purpose. God is not sometimes sovereign. He is not occasionally victorious. Jeremiah 30:24 reminds us, “The Lord shall not turn back until He has executed and accomplished the thoughts and intents of His mind.”

Case in point. Joseph in prison. From an earthly viewpoint the Egyptian jail was the tragic conclusion of Joseph’s life. The devil had Joseph just where he wanted him. So did God. What Satan intended for evil, God used for testing. If you see your troubles as nothing more than isolated hassles and hurts, you will grow bitter and angry. But, if you see your troubles as tests used by God for his glory and your maturity—then even the smallest incidents take on significance!

From You’ll Get Through This

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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Actions Have Consequences

by Max Lucado • June 18

Actions have consequences! In the book of Genesis we read how Joseph placed his loyalty above lust when he was tempted by Potiphar’s wife. His primary concern was the preference of God when he said, “How can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God” (Genesis 39:9)?

The lesson we learn from Joseph is surprisingly simple: Do what pleases God. Your co-workers want to include a trip to a gentleman’s club on the evening agenda. What do you do? Do what pleases God. Your date invites you to conclude the evening with drinks at his place. How should you reply? Do what pleases God.

You don’t fix a struggling marriage with an affair, a drug problem with more drugs, debt with more debt. You don’t get out of a mess by making another one. You’ll never go wrong doing what is right. Just do what pleases God.

From You’ll Get Through This

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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SHOW THIS TO YOUR FATHER, HUSBAND, SON, GRANDSON

Do What Pleases God

by Max Lucado • June 17

Years ago a friend gave me this counsel: Make a list of all the lives you would affect by your sexual immorality. I did. The list includes Denalyn, my three daughters, my sons-in-law, and my grandchild. Every so often, I reread it. And the list reminds me that one act of carnality is a poor exchange for a lifetime of lost legacy.

Dads, would you intentionally break the arm of your child? Of course not. Such an action would violate every fiber of your moral being. Yet if you engage in sexual activity outside your marriage, you’ll bring much more pain into the life of your child than would a broken bone.

In 1 Corinthians 6:19, Paul asked the rhetorical question: “Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you?”

Actions have consequences. So what do you do? Do what pleases God!

From You’ll Get Through This

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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More Sponge, Less Rock

by Max Lucado • June 15

Make God’s presence your passion. How? Be more sponge and less rock. Put a rock in the ocean, and what happens? Its surface gets wet. The exterior may change color, but the interior remains untouched. Yet place a sponge in the ocean, and notice the change. It absorbs the water. The ocean penetrates every pore and alters the essence of the sponge. God surrounds us in the same way the Pacific surrounds an ocean floor pebble. He is everywhere—above, below, on all sides.

We choose our response—rock or sponge? Resist or receive? Hard hearts never heal. Spongy ones do. The Psalmist determined, “When I am afraid, I will trust in You.” Open every pore of your soul to God’s presence!

From You’ll Get Through This

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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Joel Osteen

Today’s Scripture
“...and his name shall be called...The Prince of Peace.”
(Isaiah 9:6, KJV)

The Prince of Peace
Aren’t you glad Jesus is our Prince of Peace? He rules our hearts with peace. He gives us peace that passes understanding—which means we can have peace when it doesn’t make sense. We can have peace in the midst of the storm. We can have peace in the midnight hour. We can have peace when gas prices go up and the housing market goes down. We can have constant peace because we are connected to the true source of peace!

Do you need more peace in your life? Call on the Prince of Peace. Give Him your burdens and cares. The Bible says that His yoke is easy, and His burden is light. When we are working and living the way God intends—full of peace and joy—we are carrying His “light” burden. We are working with His “easy” yoke. Don’t carry the worries and stresses of this life! Call on the Prince of Peace, and He’ll take you places that you’ve never dreamed. His peace will open doors for you that no one can shut! Walk in His peace and in the life of victory He has in store for you!

A Prayer for Today
“Father, thank You for peace that guides and protects me. I choose Your Word today which says that I can walk and live in Your peace. Thank You for being the Prince of Peace in my life today in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

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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Joel Osteen

Today’s Scripture
“This Book of the Law shall not depart out of your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, that you may observe and do according to all that is written in it. For then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall deal wisely and have good success.”
(Joshua 1:8, AMP)

Observe to Do
When you speak the Word of God, something powerful takes place in your life. That’s why this verse says to not let it depart from your mouth. In other words, keep speaking and confessing the Word of God—no matter what your circumstances seem like. When you keep God’s Word in your mind, heart and mouth, it empowers you to obey all of the Lord’s commands. Do you need strength today to overcome temptation? Do you need power to walk in love? Declare what the Word of God says about your situation. Declare that you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you.

Notice what this verse says will happen when you are walking in obedience to God’s Word: The Word of God is the key to having abundance and success in every area of your life. As you continue to speak the Word of God, you will be empowered in every area of your life, and you will live the life of victory the Lord has in store for you!

A Prayer for Today
“Father, thank You for Your Word which gives me strength and hope. Fill me with Your power so that I can obey Your Word and walk in victory. I bless You and praise You today in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

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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Joel Osteen

Today’s Scripture
“Do not neglect your gift...”
(1 Timothy 4:14, NIV)

Pursue Your Strengths
God has equipped each one of us with specific gifts and talents. It’s up to you to not only identify those gifts, but to be disciplined to develop those gifts. You have to learn to stay in your strength zone. What are you naturally good at? What do you enjoy doing? Take the time to identify your strengths and weaknesses, and as the Scripture says, give yourself to your gifts. In other words, don’t spend all your time trying to improve your weaknesses. Don’t waste valuable days pursuing things that are outside of your main gifting. Focus on your strengths.

There is something that you’re good at naturally—something you can do that comes easy to you. Step out into your area of gifting. Are you good with people? Are you good with your hands? Do you have a great voice? Find ways to develop those gifts. Know that your gifts and talents are a part of your divine destiny. If you’ll be comfortable with who God made you to be and thank Him for your unique gifting, you’ll not only enjoy your life more, but you’ll be ready to receive the abundant blessing God has in store for you!

A Prayer for Today
“Heavenly Father, thank You for equipping me with everything I need to be successful in this life. I ask that You show me how to develop the gifts within me for Your glory in Jesus’ name. Amen


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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Enjoy God’s Presence

by Max Lucado • June 12

You will never go where God is not. Envision the next few hours of your life. Where will you find yourself? In a school? God indwells the classroom. On the highways? His presence lingers among the traffic. In the hospital, the boardroom, the living room, the funeral home? God will be there.

Acts 17:27 says, “He is not far from each one of us.” Each of us. God doesn’t play favorites. All people can enjoy God’s presence. But many don’t. They plod through life as if their only strength was their own. As if their only solution comes from within, not from above. They live God-less lives. Lay claim to the nearness of God. Grip God’s promise like the parachute it is. Repeat it to yourself over and over. “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5).

From You’ll Get Through This

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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The One Gift Troubles Cannot Touch

by Max Lucado • June 11

What do you still have that you cannot lose? My father had just retired. He and mom wanted to visit every national park in their travel trailer. Then came the diagnosis of ALS, a cruel degenerative disease that affects the muscles. Within months, the world, as he knew it, was gone.

Denalyn and I were preparing to do mission work in Brazil. I offered to change my plans. But Dad’s reply was immediate and confident. “Go, I have no fear of death or eternity, so don’t be concerned about me. Just Go. Please Him.” His retirement; years with his children and grandchildren; years with his wife—the loss was severe, but it wasn’t complete. “Dad,” I could have asked him, “what do you have that you cannot lose?” He still had God’s call on his heart! And so do you!

From You’ll Get Through This

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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His First Choice

by Max Lucado • June 9

You are God’s child. He saw you, picked you, and placed you! Jesus said, “You did not choose me, I chose you!” You are God’s child. Replacement or fill-in? Hardly. You are His first choice. The choice wasn’t obligatory, required, compulsory, forced, or compelled. He selected you because He wanted to. You are His open, willful, voluntary choice. He walked onto the auction block where you stood, and He proclaimed, This child is mine!

1 Peter 1:19 says He bought you, “with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.” You are His child forever. Your struggles will not last forever—but you will. The promise is in 2 Timothy 2:12: “If we endure, we shall also reign with Him.” Believe it. Clutch it. Tattoo it on the interior of your heart! You are God’s child.

From You’ll Get Through This

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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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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Looking Upward

by Max Lucado • June 8

Genesis tells us, When Joseph had come to his brothers, they stripped him of his tunic. They took him and cast him into a pit. . .and they sat down to eat a meal. (37:23-25)

Joseph’s hands were bound, his ankles tied, and his voice became hoarse from screaming. It wasn’t that his brothers didn’t hear him. Twenty-two years later, when a famine tamed their swagger, they would confess, “we saw the anguish of his soul when he pleaded with us, and we would not hear” (Gen 42:21).

You’re a version of Joseph. You carry something of God within you—something the world needs. If Satan can neutralize you, he can mute your influence. Life in the pit stinks! Yet it forces you to look upward. Someone from up there must come down here and give you a hand. God did for Joseph, and He will do the same for you!

From You’ll Get Through This

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 Redeems for Good

by Max Lucado • June 3
00:00
00:00
Have you wept your final tear or received your last round of chemotherapy? Not necessarily. Will your unhappy marriage become happy in a heartbeat? Not likely. Does God guarantee the absence of struggle and the abundance of strength? Not in this life. But he does pledge to reweave your pain for a higher purpose.

It won’t be quick! Sometimes God takes His time. One hundred twenty years to prepare Noah for the flood, eighty years to prepare Moses for his work. How long will God take with you? He may take His time. His history is redeemed not in minutes but in lifetimes. We see a perfect mess; God sees a perfect chance to train, test, and teach. We see a prison…God sees bootcamp! What Satan intends for evil, God redeems for good!

From You’ll Get Through This

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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Today I sat and meditated, let my mind rest in God and praised Him.

Then I picked up my Bible which was in my lap and read:

[Mat 11:3-5 NKJV] 3 and said to Him, "Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?"
This was his question.
John was in jail and although he had already seen the glory of God he began to wonder.

4 Jesus answered and said to them, "Go and tell John the things which you hear and see:
1. Tell him what you hear (Spiritually) We have to hear the word spiritually before we
we can believe.
2. Tell him the things you see (spiritually and physically)

5 "[The] blind see and [the] lame walk; [the] lepers are cleansed and [the] deaf hear; [the] dead are raised up and [the] poor have the gospel preached to them.
THE LIST
1. The blind see (spiritually and physically.
2. The lame walk (spiritually and physically)
3. The lepers are cleansed ( physically and spiritual uncleanness as well)
4. The dead are raised up (physically and also spiritual dead are raised up)
5. And the poor have the gospel preached to them (The spiritually poor and the
Materially poor.

So many things in these 3 verses. When we meditate and wait on the Lord the Word means so much more to us.


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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Today's Word with Joel and Victoria

Today’s Scripture
“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.”
(Ephesians 4:31, NIV)

Refuse Bitterness
Bitterness is an extremely destructive force. It can seep into the depths of your heart if you choose not to forgive someone. Scripture tells us that if we choose not to forgive others, it will even hinder our prayers. Thank God that He has empowered us to forgive and release bitterness! It all begins with a choice. You may have been through unfair situations, but it’s not over until God says it’s over. God always has the final say. He is a God of justice. He sees every wrong that’s ever been done to you and every unfair situation. If you will stay in faith and choose to forgive, God will make your wrongs right. He’ll bring justice into your life. Your attitude should be, “It may have been unfair. They may have done me wrong, but I refuse to get bitter. I know my time is coming.” Choose forgiveness, honor God and walk in complete freedom in every area of your life!

A Prayer for Today
“Father, today I refuse bitterness. I refuse to allow the past to keep me stuck. Right now I forgive those who have hurt me. I pray blessing on them, that they would come to know Your truth. Father, thank You for setting my heart free today in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

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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The Master Builder

by Max Lucado • June 5

Several years ago the state was rebuilding an overpass near my house. Three lanes reduced to one, transforming a morning commute into a daily stew. The project, like human history, had been in development since before time began. My next-door neighbors at the time were highway engineers, consultants to the department of transportation. “It’ll take time,” they responded to my grumbles, “but it will all get finished.” They had seen the plans.

In the Old Testament story of Joseph, God allows us to study His plans. Brothers dumping brother. But watch the Master Builder at work. He cleared debris, stabilized the structure. And the chaos of Genesis 37:24…They cast him into the pit..became the triumph of Genesis 50:20— life for many people. God redeemed the story of Joseph. Can’t He redeem your story as well?

From You’ll Get Through This

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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The Master Weaver

by Max Lucado • June 4

In God’s hands intended evil becomes eventual good! Nothing in the Old Testament story of Joseph glosses over the presence of evil. Bloodstains and tearstains are everywhere. Joseph’s heart was rubbed raw against the rocks of disloyalty and miscarried justice. Yet time and time again God redeemed the pain. The torn robe became a royal one. The pit became a palace. The broken family grew old together. The very acts intended to destroy God’s servant turned out to strengthen him.

“You meant evil against me,” Joseph told his brothers, using a Hebrew verb that means to weave. You wove evil, he was saying, but God re-wove it together for good. God, the Master Weaver. He stretches the yarn, intertwines the colors. Nothing escapes His reach!

From You’ll Get Through This

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 Gets Us Through Stuff

by Max Lucado • June 2

Whatever it is—you’ll get through this! You think you won’t. But we all do. We fear the depression will never lift, the yelling will never stop, the pain will never leave. We wonder, will this gray sky ever brighten? Will we ever exit this pit?

Yes…yes! Deliverance is to the Bible what jazz music is to Mardi Gras: big, bold, and everywhere. Out of the lion’s den for Daniel, the prison for Peter, the whale’s belly for Jonah, the grave for Lazarus, and the shackles for Paul. God gets us through stuff. Through the wilderness, through the valley of the shadow of death. Through is a favorite word of God’s. Isaiah 4:32 says, “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; when you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned. . .”

You will get through this!

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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Joel Osteen

Today’s Scripture
“I lift up my eyes to the mountains — where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.”
(Psalm 121:1–2, NIV)

Just Look Up!
Anytime you are facing an issue, the first thing you should do before you call your friend, before you search the internet should be to simply look up. When you look up with your spiritual eyes toward God, that’s when you have your perspective in the right place. That’s when His love will empower you and lead you. He already has the answer to your problems anyway. When you look to Him, you’ll find help!

Don’t let the enemy distract you with the cares of this earthly realm. Just look up by keeping your heart and mind focused on Him.

A Prayer for Today
“Father, I know that when I keep my mind stayed on You, I will find peace in the midst of the storm. Thank You for giving me the answers I need and for being my help in troubled times in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

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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Never Give Up

by Max Lucado • June 1

How do we flourish in the midst of tragedy? Remember Joseph? Genesis records his story. It says his brothers “hated him.” They put him into a pit, leaving him for dead. And then they covered up what they’d done. Joseph’s story got worse before it got better. Abandonment led to enslavement, then entrapment, and finally imprisonment. He was sold out. Mistreated. Yet he never gave up. His heart never hardened; his resolve never vanished.

He not only survived—he thrived! Speaking years later to the brothers who had betrayed him he said, “As for you…you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result” (Genesis 50:20).

In God’s hands intended evil becomes eventual good!

From You’ll Get Through This

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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Be Thankful

As believers, we are commanded to be thankful. A thankful attitude and peace go hand in hand. Did you know that you can choose to have peace? You don’t have to let things upset you. You don’t have to be anxious and worried. That word peace means to set at one again. When you set your mind at one with God and His Word, you will automatically have peace. When you have peace, you can’t help but be thankful! You will have a song in your heart and a spring in your step!

Choose today to let the peace of God rule in your heart. Have an attitude of gratitude. Even if you have things that are upsetting you, take a step of faith and thank God for His goodness in your life. Thank Him for working behind the scenes on your behalf. Choose to be thankful and embrace the peace and blessing God has for you!

A Prayer for Today
“Father, thank You for Your peace that rules my heart. I choose Your peace today and thank You for guiding my every step. I choose to be thankful today and bless You for Your faithfulness in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

Joel Osteen


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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Goodness and Mercy

by Max Lucado • May 30

Our moods may shift, but God’s doesn’t. Our minds may change, but God’s doesn’t. Our devotion may falter, but God’s never does. Even if we are faithless, he is faithful, for he cannot betray himself. He is a sure God. And because he is, we can confidently say with Psalm 23:6, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life.”

What a huge statement. Look at the size of it! Goodness and mercy follow the child of God each and every day. Think of the days ahead. He will walk you through. He will take your hand. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me—not some, not most, but all the days of my life. Release your doubts. You are no candidate for insecurity. You can trust God. . .all the days of your life!

From Traveling Light

Edited by: DIDMIS at: 5/30/2015 (13:44)
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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Amen and thank you, Irene!

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GOOD FOR HEALTHY LIFESTYLE (MY NOTE)

Today’s Scripture
“Dear friend, I am praying that all is well with you and that your body is as healthy as I know your soul is.”
(3 John 1:2, TLB)

Make Health a Priority
We all set priorities in our lives, whether consciously or unconsciously. We all organize our time based on what’s important to us. Scripture encourages us to make our health a priority. When we are at our best physically, every other area of our life seems more manageable.

God created you to be active and healthy so you can be ready for what He has in store for you. What can you do today to invest in your health? Can you change one thing in your diet? Can you add 10 minutes of exercise to your schedule each day? Being physically healthy is not just a good idea — it’s a good spiritual idea, so make health a priority!

A Prayer for Today
“Father, today I dedicate my body to Your service and glory. Help me to honor You and make good decisions for my health in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

Joel Osteen.

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 Gives Hope

by Max Lucado • May 28

God gives hope! So what if someone was born thinner or stronger, lighter or darker than you? Why count diplomas or compare resumes? What does it matter if they have a place at the head table? You have a place at God’s table! And he’s filling your cup to overflowing. Hasn’t our Father given us a strong wall of grace to protect us? A sure exit to deliver us? Of whom can we be envious? Who has more than we do?

Rather than want what others have, shouldn’t we wonder if they have what we do? Instead of being jealous of them, how about zealous for them? Hold out the cup! There’s enough to go around. One thing is certain. When the final storm comes and you are safe in your Father’s house, you won’t regret what he didn’t give. You will be stunned at what he did.

From Traveling Light

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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The Good Shepherd

by Max Lucado • May 27

If the Gospels teach us anything, they teach us that Jesus is a Good Shepherd. In John 10:11, Jesus announces, “The good shepherd gives his life for the sheep.” Didn’t Jesus spread the oil of prevention on his disciples? He prayed for them. He equipped them. He revealed to them the secrets of the parables. He calmed their fears. Because he was a good shepherd, he protected them…and protected them against disappointments.

Jesus tends to his sheep. And he will tend to you. Go to him. Others may guide us to God. Others may help us understand God. But no one can do the work of God, for only God can heal. Psalm 147:3 promises God “heals the brokenhearted.” Your first step? Go to God. Then bow before God. Trust in Him. Go. Bow. Trust! Worth a try, don’t you think?

From Traveling Light

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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THIS SPOKE TO ME

Loneliness

by Max Lucado • May 26

We’ll try anything to get rid of our loneliness. But should we? Should we be so quick to drop it? Could it be that loneliness is a gift? A gift from God? A friend turns away. The job goes bad. Your spouse didn’t understand. The church is dull. One by one he removes the options until all you have left is God. He would do that? Hebrews 12:6 tells us, “The Lord disciplines those he loves.” If he must silence every voice, he will. He wants you to discover what David discovered and to be able to say what David said, “You are with me.”

Loneliness. Could it be one of God’s finest gifts? Scripture says, “Perfect love casts out fear.” If a season of solitude is his way to teach you to hear his song, don’t you think it’s worth it? So do I.

From Traveling Light

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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Get Over Yourself

by Max Lucado • May 25

Proverbs 16:5 says, “The Lord despises pride.” So, get over yourself!

An elementary boy came home from tryouts for the school play. “Mommy, mommy” he announced, “I got a part. I’ve been chosen to sit in the audience and clap and cheer.” When you have a chance to clap and cheer, do you take it? If you do, your head is starting to fit your hat size.

Demanding respect is like chasing a butterfly. Chase it, and you’ll never catch it. Sit still, and it may light on your shoulder. The Bible says in Proverbs 27:2, “Don’t praise yourself. Let someone else do it.” Does your self-esteem need attention? You need only pause at the base of the cross and be reminded of this: The maker of the stars would rather die for you than live without you. And that’s a fact!

From Traveling Light

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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Today’s Scripture
“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”
(Psalm 147:3, NIV)

He is the Healer
It doesn’t matter what is “broken” in your life today, God’s nature is to bring you complete healing. Do you need healing in your body? Your mind? Heart? Finances? Relationships? God is your healer. Notice what the Psalmist says in this verse: He binds up their wounds. In the natural, if you have a broken arm, it doesn’t just heal overnight. The doctor makes a cast to hold it in place and protect it. He binds up your wound. In the spiritual realm, God does the same thing. He wraps Himself around your brokenness and protects the wounded area until it is strong enough to function properly again. The Bible also says that He is a restorer. That means that when He does a work of healing in our lives, He makes us better than we were before.

If you’re going through the healing process today, know this: it may take longer than you planned, but God is binding up your wound. He is protecting you and healing you. He will bring you out better and stronger than you were before. He will take you to a place of complete healing so that you can live the life of victory He has in store for you.

A Prayer for Today
“Father, thank You for being my healer. Thank You for restoring every area of my life. I give You my brokenness and everything that I am today. Use me for Your glory in Jesus’ name. Amen”

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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Step Out of the Boat

Have you ever thought about why Peter wanted to get out of the boat? Why did he all of the sudden think he could walk on water? Well, you might say, “It’s because he saw Jesus open the blind eyes and cleanse the lepers.” Yes, that’s true. But, the other disciples in the boat saw the same things. Why didn’t they want to get out?

Peter understood that it was his time. He stirred his faith up. He believed at that moment that he could do what God placed in his heart. Jesus said, “Peter, do you want to get out of that boat?” He said, “Yes, I do.” Jesus replied, “Well, come on out.” Notice that Jesus didn’t say, “Peter, stay in that boat. Don’t you know I’m the Son of God?” No, He said, “Peter, I like your attitude of faith. I like the fact that you believe you can do great things.”

Today, have that same kind of boldness! Start believing that your time is here! All the dreams that you’ve buried, those desires that you thought would never work out, it’s time to start believing again. It’s your time, and it’s time to step out of the boat!

A Prayer for Today
“Dear Father, today I choose to believe Your Word. I believe You are faithful to complete the good work You’ve started in my life. I choose to hear Your voice and step out of the boat. Thank You for bringing to pass the dreams in my heart in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

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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Nothing to Be Proud About

by Max Lucado • May 22
Do art critics give awards to the canvas? Can you imagine a scalpel growing smug after a successful heart transplant? Of course not. And the message of the Twenty-Third Psalm is that we have nothing to be proud about either. We have rest, salvation, blessings, and a home in heaven—and we did nothing to earn any of it. Who did the work? The answer threads through the Psalm. . .

He makes me. . .
He leads me. . .
He restores my soul. . .
You are with me. . .
Your rod and staff comfort me. . .
You prepare a table. . .
You anoint my head. . .

And just to make sure we get the point, right in the middle of the poem, David declares, the shepherd leads his sheep, not for our names’ sake, but for “His name’s sake!”

From Traveling Light

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 Loves Humility

by Max Lucado • May 21

God loves humility. Could that be why he offers so many tips on cultivating it?

Assess yourself honestly. Romans 12:3 says, “Don’t cherish exaggerated ideas of yourself, but try to have a sane estimate of your capabilities.”

Don’t take success too seriously. Deuteronomy 8:13 warns, “When your silver and gold increase your heart will become proud.” Ponder your success and count your money in a cemetery, and remember neither of the two is buried with you.

Celebrate the significance of others. Philippians 2:3 says, “In humility consider others better than yourselves.”

Speak humbly. 1st Samuel 2:3 warns, “Let no arrogance come from your mouth.” Don’t be cocky. People aren’t impressed with your opinions. In Galatians 6:14, Paul said, “The cross of our Lord Jesus Christ is my only reason for bragging!” So if you need to brag—brag about that!

From Traveling Light

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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None Righteous

by Max Lucado • May 20

All of us occasionally do what is right. A few predominantly do what is right. But do any of us always do what is right? According to Paul we don’t! Romans 3:10 says, “There is no one righteous; no, not one.” Some beg to differ. I’m not perfect, but I’m better than most. I’d say I was a righteous person. I used to try that one on my mother. My brother’s room was always messier than mine. I’d say, “See, my room is clean; just look at his.” It never worked. She would show me her room and say, “This is what I mean by clean.”

God does the same. He points to himself and says, This is what I mean by righteousness. David said, “He leads me in the paths of righteousness.” God’s way is a narrow winding path up a steep hill. At the top of the hill is a Cross!

From Traveling Light


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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Life’s a Jungle

by Max Lucado May 19
For many people, life is—well, life is a jungle. Not a jungle of beasts and trees. Would that it were so simple. Our jungles are thickets of failing health, broken hearts, and empty wallets. Our forests are framed with hospital walls and divorce courts. It is a jungle out there. And for many, hope is in short supply.

Let’s see if we can brighten up the picture. The first answer would be a person. Someone to look you in the face and say, Don’t give up. There’s a better place and I’ll lead you there. David says in Psalm 23, “He restores my soul.” God is our good Shepherd and He majors in restoring hope to the soul. When God comes, your loneliness diminishes, your despair decreases, and your confusion begins to lift. You haven’t left the jungle, but you have hope because you have someone who can lead you out.

From Traveling Light

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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Thank you, Irene, for sharing with us!

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Whaddif’s

by Max Lucado • May 18

Worry is the burlap bag of burdens—overflowing with whaddifs! Whaddif it rains at my wedding? Whaddif after all my dieting, they discover lettuce is fattening and chocolate isn’t? The burlap bag of worry!

No one wants your worries. Truth be told, you don’t want them either. No one has to remind you the high cost of anxiety, but I will anyway. Worry isn’t a disease, but it causes diseases—high blood pressure, heart trouble, migraines, and a host of stomach disorders. Jesus said in Matthew 6:27, “You cannot add any time to your life by worrying about it.” Worrying is one job you can’t farm out, but you can overcome it. David declares in Psalm 23:2, “He leads me beside the still waters.” He leads me. He is ahead of me. He is in front. God leads us! And what a difference that makes!

From Traveling Light



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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Change Your Focus and Relax

by Max Lucado • May

Psalm 23:2 says, “He makes me to lie down in green pastures; leads me beside the still waters.” Note the two pronouns preceding the two verbs. He makes me. . .He leads me. Who is the active one? Who is in charge? The Shepherd!

We see the waves of the water rather than the Savior walking through them. We focus on our paltry provisions rather than on the One who can feed five thousand hungry people. Change your focus—and relax! While you’re at it, change your schedule and rest! Life can get so loud we forget to shut it down. When David says, “He makes me lie down in green pastures,” he is saying my shepherd makes me lie down in his finished work. His pasture is his gift to us. This is not the pasture you’ve made. It is a gift from God, and your Shepherd invites you there!

From Traveling Light


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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A Big Deal About Rest

by Max Lucado • May


Life can get so loud we forget to shut it down. Maybe that’s why God made such a big deal about rest in the Ten Commandments! Of the ten, which one occupies the most space? Murder…adultery…stealing? You’d think so. But curiously, these commands are tributes to brevity. God needed only five English words to condemn them all.

But when it came to the topic of rest, it took a paragraph in Exodus 20: 8-11. But. . .but. . .who’s going to run the store? We offer up one reason after another, but God silences them all with one poignant reminder. “In six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day.” God’s message is plain. If creation didn’t crash when I rested, it won’t crash when you do!

From Traveling Light



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: 118,561
5/15/15 7:59 P

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Eternal Creatures

by Max Lucado • May 15

We are eternal creatures. We ask eternal questions. Where did I come from? Where am I going? Is there life after death? These are the primal questions of the soul. And if left unanswered, such questions steal our rest.

Only one other living creature has as much trouble resting as we do. Not dogs…they doze. Cats invented the catnap. Most animals know how to rest—with one exception. These creatures are woolly, simpleminded, and slow. Sheep! Sheep can’t sleep. For them to do so everything must be just right. No tension in the flock…no hunger in the belly…everything has to be just so. Unfortunately sheep cannot find safe pasture or find food. They need help. They need a shepherd to lead them, and help them to lie down in green pastures. Without a shepherd they can’t rest. Without a Shepherd, neither can we!

From Traveling Light

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)



 current weight: 134.0 
 
204
186.5
169
151.5
134
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