SHARE SIMPOSIOUS WITH OTHERS. IT COULD REALLY HELP THEM.
Hands Of The Master
Wishing to encourage her young son’s progress on the piano, a mother took her boy to a Paderewski concert. After they were seated, the mother spotted an old friend in the audience and walked down the aisle to greet her. Seizing the opportunity to explore the wonders of the concert hall, the little boy rose and eventually explored his way through a door marked “NO ADMITTANCE.” When the house lights dimmed and the concert was about to begin, the mother returned to her seat and discovered that the child was missing.
Suddenly, the curtains parted and spotlights focused on the impressive Steinway on stage. In horror, the mother saw her little boy sitting at the keyboard, innocently picking out “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star.” At that moment, the great piano master made his entrance, quickly moved to the piano, and whispered in the boy’s ear, “Don’t quit.” Keep playing.” Then, leaning over, Paderewski reached down with his left hand and began filling in a bass part. Soon his right arm reached around to the other side of the child, and he added a running obligato. Together, the old master and the young novice transformed what could have been a frightening situation into a wonderfully creative experience. The audience was so mesmerized that they couldn’t recall what else the great master played. Only the classic, “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star.”
Perhaps that’s the way it is with God. What we can accomplish on our own is hardly noteworthy. We try our best, but the results aren’t always graceful flowing music. However, with the hand of the Master, our life’s work can truly be beautiful. The next time you set out to accomplish great feats, listen carefully. You may hear the voice of the Master, whispering in your ear, “Don’t quit.” “Keep playing.” May you feel His arms around you and know that His hands are there, helping you turn your feeble attempts into true masterpieces. Remember, God doesn’t seem to call the equipped, rather, He equips the ‘called.’ Life is more accurately measured by the lives you touch than by the things you acquire.
Some years ago on a hot summer day in south Florida a little boy decided to go for a swim in the old swimming hole behind his house. In a hurry to dive into the cool water, he ran out the back door, leaving behind shoes, socks, and shirt as he went. He flew into the water, not realizing that as he swam toward the middle of the lake, an alligator was swimming toward the shore.
His mother in the house was looking out the window saw the two as they got closer and closer together. In utter fear, she ran toward the water, yelling to her son as loudly as she could. Hearing her voice, the little boy became alarmed and made a U-turn to swim to his mother. It was too late. Just as he reached her, the alligator reached him.
From the dock, the mother grabbed her little boy by the arms just as the alligator snatched his legs. That began an incredible tug-of-war between the two. The alligator was much stronger than the mother, but the mother was much too passionate to let go.
A farmer happened to drive by, heard her screams, raced from his truck, took aim and shot the alligator. Remarkably, after weeks and weeks in the hospital the little boy survived. His legs were extremely scarred by the vicious attack of the animal. And, on his arms, were deep scratches where his mother’s fingernails dug into his flesh in her effort to hang on to the son she loved.
The newspaper reporter who interviewed the boy after the trauma, asked if he would show him his scars. The boy lifted his pant legs. And then, with obvious pride, he said to the reporter, “But look at my arms. I have great scars on my arms, too. I have them because my Mom wouldn’t let go.” You and I can identify with that little boy. We have scars, too. No, not from an alligator, or anything quite so dramatic. But the scars of a painful past. Some of those scars are unsightly and have caused us deep regret. But, some wounds, my friend, are because God has refused to let go.
In the midst of your struggle, He’s been there holding on to you. The Scripture teaches that God loves you. You are a child of God. He wants to protect you and provide for you in every way.
But sometimes we foolishly wade into dangerous situations. The swimming hole of life is filled with peril – and we forget that the enemy is waiting to attack. That’s when the tug-of-war begins – and if you have the scars of His love on your arms be very, very grateful. He did not and will not – let you go.
The call of God is not a call to serve Him in any particular way. My contact with the nature of God will shape my understanding of His call and will help me realize what I truly desire to do for Him. The call of God is an expression of His nature; the service which results in my life is suited to me and is an expression of my nature. The call of the natural life was stated by the apostle Paul— “When it pleased God . . . to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him [that is, purely and solemnly express Him] among the Gentiles . . . .”
Service is the overflow which pours from a life filled with love and devotion. But strictly speaking, there is no call to that. Service is what I bring to the relationship and is the reflection of my identification with the nature of God. Service becomes a natural part of my life. God brings me into the proper relationship with Himself so that I can understand His call, and then I serve Him on my own out of a motivation of absolute love. Service to God is the deliberate love-gift of a nature that has heard the call of God. Service is an expression of my nature, and God’s call is an expression of His nature. Therefore, when I receive His nature and hear His call, His divine voice resounds throughout His nature and mine and the two become one in service. The Son of God reveals Himself in me, and out of devotion to Him service becomes my everyday way of life.
Come and see the works of God; He is awesome in His doing toward the sons of men. —Psalm 66:5
The word awesome is tossed around a lot these days. Talk about cars, movies, songs, or food—and somebody will say, “That’s awesome!”
But if we call earth-side stuff awesome and then call God awesome, we diminish how truly awesome He is. A friend of mine has a rule in her house—the word awesome is reserved only for God.
Trivializing God is no trivial matter. He is far more than a companion who will fit into our “buddy system” or a divine ATM responding to our impulses. Until we are stunned by the awesomeness of God, we will be way too impressed with ourselves and lose the joy of the privilege of belonging to an awesome God.
A look at the Psalms puts it all in perspective. One psalmist declares, “For the Lord Most High is awesome; He is a great King over all the earth” (Ps. 47:2). And another psalm commands: “Say to God, ‘How awesome are Your works!’ . . . Come and see the works of God; He is awesome in His doing toward the sons of men” (Ps. 66:3,5).
What could be more awesome than the love that compelled Jesus to go to the cross for us? Put Him in His proper place as the only One who is truly awesome, and praise God for His awesome work in your life!
Holy, Holy, Holy! All the saints adore Thee,
Casting down their golden crowns around the glassy sea;
Cherubim and seraphim falling down before Thee,
Which wert and art and evermore shalt be. —Heber
If you’re too impressed with yourself, take a closer look at God’s awesomeness.
Dead Ducks Don’t Flutter
Stories below from: heavensinspirations.com
Many years ago, a wealthy man went duck hunting with a hired hand named Sam.They took a horse and carriage, and along the way a rim came off one of the wheels. As Sam hammered it back on, he accidentally hit his finger. Instantly he let go with some bad words. He quickly fell to his knees, asking God’s forgiveness. “Lord, it’s difficult at times to live the Christian life”, he prayed. “Sam” said the man, “I know you’re a Christian, but tell me why you struggle so, I’m an atheist, and I don’t have problems like that.”
Sam didn’t know what to say. Just then two ducks flew overhead. The man raised his gun and two shots rang out. “Leave the dead one and go after that wounded bird!” he shouted. Sam pointed at the duck that was fluttering desperately to escape and said, “I’ve got an answer for you now, Boss. You said my Christianity isn’t any good because I have to struggle so. Well, I’m the wounded duck, and struggle to get away from the devil. But you Boss, you’re the dead duck!”
That insight fits Paul’s description of his Christian experience in Romans 7: 14-25. Struggle is one evidence of God’s work in our lives Forgiveness of sin is available, so don’t despair. Remember, dead ducks don’t flutter.
–Dennis De Hann
Struggle, yes, it’s part of living
Nothing’s gained on beds of ease;
But when our heart is set on Jesus,
Struggle drives us to our knees.
–D. De Hann
If Jesus lives within us,
Sin need not overwhelm us.
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“A house becomes a home when you can write
“I love you” on the furniture.”
I can’t tell you how many countless hours
that I have spent CLEANING!
I used to spend at least 8 hours every weekend
making sure things were just perfect – “in case
someone came over”. Then I realized one day
that no one came over; they were all out living
life and having fun!
Now, when people visit, I find no need to explain
the “condition” of my home. They are more in-
terested in hearing about the things I’ve been
doing while I was away living life and having fun.
If you haven’t figured this out yet, please
heed this advice.
Life is short. Enjoy it! Dust if you must, but
wouldn’t it be better to paint a picture or
write a letter, bake a cake or plant a seed,
ponder the difference between want and need?
Dust if you must, but there’s not much time,
with rivers to swim and mountains to climb,
music to hear and books to read,!
friends to cherish and life to lead.
Dust if you must, but the world’s out there
with the sun in your eyes, the wind in your
hair, a flutter of snow, a shower of rain.
This day will not come around again.
Dust if you must, but bear in mind, old age
will come, and it’s not kind. And when you
go – and go you must – you, yourself
will make more dust!
Excuse This House
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Some houses try to hide the fact
That children shelter there
Our boasts it quite openly
The signs are everywhere
For smears are on the windows
Little smudges on the door
I should apologize I guess
For the toys strewn on the floor
But I sat down with the children
And played, laughed and read
And if the door bell doesn’t shine
Their eyes will shine instead
For when I’m forced to choose
One job or the other
It’s good to be a house wife
But I’d rather be a Mother
I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in me, Father, and I am in you (John 17:21).
What does Jesus’ prayer inJohn 17:20-26 reveal about the depth of unity He sought?
Why do you sometimes avoid conflict? How can you honor God and live a healthier life in Christ by the way you face it?
Many Christians are masters at conflict-avoidance. Perhaps we confuse “blessed are the peacemakers” (Matthew 5:9) with “blessed are those who avoid unpleasant situations.” But conflict and confrontation weave their way throughout the fabric of the Bible.
As the children of Israel prepared to cross the Jordan River for the first time, they faced literal warfare. But first they had to fight a figurative battle that threatened the nation in a different way. The tribes of Gad and Reuben owned “vast numbers of livestock” and wanted to stay in the pastures on the east side of the Jordan (Numbers 32:1).
Moses immediately questioned their motives. “Do you intend to stay here while your brothers go across and do all the fighting?” he asked. “Why do you want to discourage the rest of the people?” (Numbers 32:6-7).
The leaders of Gad and Reuben could have wilted in the face of a powerful man’s anger. Or they could have reacted spitefully. Instead, they replied, “We simply want to build pens for our livestock and fortified towns for our wives and children. Then we will arm ourselves and lead our fellow Israelites into battle” (Numbers 32:16-17).
Moses then laid out the specifics for how the tribes would move forward. They responded, “We, your servants, will follow your instructions exactly” (Numbers 32:25). And they did.
When confronted with disagreements, we tend to vacillate between dishonest niceness and sinful anger. Both extremes are wrong. Jesus never shrank from confrontation. He did, however, pray for our unity even as His crucifixion loomed.
Conflict is inevitable. When it comes, may it point us to the selfless honesty of Jesus and His path that leads to lasting peace.