Tag Archives: spontaneous

God Guides Us

 

An “Aussie” Story

From: inspire21.com

— Author unknown

Years ago a hardworking man took his family from New York State to Australia to take advantage of a work opportunity there. Part of this man’s family was a handsome young son who had aspirations of joining the circus as a trapeze artist or an actor. This young fellow, biding his time until a circus job or even one as a stagehand came along, worked at the local shipyards which bordered on the worse section of town.

Walking home from work one evening this young man was attacked by five thugs who wanted to rob him. Instead of just giving up his money the young fellow resisted. However they bested him easily and proceeded to beat him to a pulp. They mashed his face with their boots, and kicked and beat his body brutally with clubs, leaving him for dead. When the police happened to find him lying in the road they assumed he was dead and called for the Morgue Wagon.

On the way to the morgue a policeman heard him gasp for air, and they immediately took him to the emergency unit at the hospital. When he was placed on a gurney a nurse remarked to her horror, that this young man no longer had a face. Each eye socket was smashed, his skull, legs, and arms fractured, his nose literally hanging from his face, all is teeth were gone, and his jaw was almost completely torn from his skull.

Although his life was spared, he spent over a year in the hospital. When he finally left, his body may have healed but his face was disgusting to look at. He was no longer the handsome youth that everyone admired.

When the young man started to look for work again he was turned down by everyone just on account of the way he looked. One potential employer suggested to him that he join the freak show at the circus as The Man Who Had No Face. And he did this for a while. He was still rejected by everyone and no one wanted to be seen in his company. He had thoughts of suicide.

This went on for five years. One day he passed a church and sought some solace there. Entering the church he encountered a priest who saw him sobbing while kneeling in a pew. The priest took pity on him and took him to the rectory where they talked at length. The priest was impressed with him to such a degree that he said that he would do everything possible for him that could be done to restore his dignity and life, if the young man would promise to be the best Catholic he could be, and trust in God’s mercy to free him from his torturous life. The young man went to Mass and communion every day, and after thanking God for saving his life, asked God to only give him peace of mind and the grace to be the best man he could ever be in His eyes.

The priest, through his personal contacts was able to secure the services of the best plastic surgeon in Australia. There would be no cost to the young man, as the doctor was the priest’s best friend. The doctor too was so impressed by the young man. Whose outlook now on life, even though he had experienced the worst, was filled with good humor and love. The surgery was a miraculous success. All the best dental work was also done for him.

The young man became everything he promised God he would be. He was also blessed with a wonderful, beautiful wife, many children, and success in an industry which would have been the furthest thing from his mind as a career, if not for the goodness of God and the love of the people who cared for him.

This he acknowledges publicly.

 

Matthew 10:32-42 (Good News Translation)

God’s Word: Guiding Us to Follow Jesus

From: Americanbiblesociety

Introduction

Matthew 10:32-42: In the midst of persecution, Jesus encourages the disciples to remain courageous and faithful. He warns his followers that his message will create conflict and divisiveness within families, but that those who remain faithful to the Gospel will receive their reward.

Today’s Scripture: Matthew 10:39

Those who try to gain their own life will lose it; but those who lose their life for my sake will gain it.

Today’s Reading

32 Those who declare publicly that they belong to me, I will do the same for them before my Father in heaven. 33 But those who reject me publicly, I will reject before my Father in heaven. 34 Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the world. No, I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35 I came to set sons against their fathers, daughters against their mothers, daughters-in-law against their mothers-in-law; 36 your worst enemies will be the members of your own family. 37 Those who love their father or mother more than me are not fit to be my disciples; those who love their son or daughter more than me are not fit to be my disciples. 38 Those who do not take up their cross and follow in my steps are not fit to be my disciples. 39 Those who try to gain their own life will lose it; but those who lose their life for my sake will gain it. 40 Whoever welcomes you welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. 41 Whoever welcomes God’s messenger because he is God’s messenger, will share in his reward. And whoever welcomes a good man because he is good, will share in his reward. 42 You can be sure that whoever gives even a drink of cold water to one of the least of these my followers because he is my follower, will certainly receive a reward. ”

Reflect

Yesterday we read about the challenges that face those who follow Jesus (Matthew 10:16-31). Based on today’s reading, what are the rewards of discipleship? Reread verse 38. What does it mean to you to “take up your cross” and follow Jesus?

I Wish

 

 


christian one liners

From: Inspire21.com

— Author unknown

Many folks want to serve God, but only as advisers.

It is easier to preach ten sermons than it is to live one.

The good Lord didn’t create anything without a purpose, but mosquitoes come close.

When you get to your wit’s end, you’ll find God lives there.

People are funny, they want the front of the bus, the middle of the road, and the back of the church.

Opportunity may knock once, but temptation bangs on your front door forever.

Quit griping about your church; if it was perfect, you couldn’t belong.

The phrase that is guaranteed to wake up an audience: “And in conclusion.”

If the church wants a better preacher, it only needs to pray for the one it has.

God Himself does not propose to judge a man until he is dead. So why should you?

To make a long story short, don’t tell it.

If your left hand doesn’t know what your right hand is doing, you should consider running for a job in Washington, DC.

Some minds are like concrete, thoroughly mixed up and permanently set.

Peace starts with a smile.

I don’t know why some people change churches; what difference does it make which one you stay home from?

A lot of church members who are singing “Standing on the Promises” are just sitting on the premises.

We were called to be witnesses, not lawyers or judges.

Be ye fishers of men. You catch ’em – He’ll clean ’em.

Coincidence is when God chooses to remain anonymous.

Don’t put a question mark where God put a period.

Don’t wait for 6 strong men to take you to church.

Forbidden fruits create many jams.

God doesn’t call the qualified, He qualifies the called.

God grades on the cross, not the curve.

God loves everyone, but probably prefers “fruits of the spirit” over “religious nuts!”

God promises a safe landing, not a calm passage.

He who angers you, controls you!

If God is your Copilot – swap seats!

Prayer: Don’t give God instructions — just report for duty!

The task ahead of us is never as great as the Power behind us.

The Will of God will never take you to where the Grace of God will not protect you.

We don’t change the message, the message changes us.

You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage him.

The best mathematical equation I have ever seen: 1 cross + 3 nails = 4 given.

“Father, bless this person in whatever it is that You know he or she may be needing this day! Amen!”

Don’t keep the faith… spread it around!!!

 

I Wish

From: Inspirationalarchive.com

I wish you the courage to be warm when the world would prefer that you be cool.
I wish you success sufficient to your needs;
I wish you failure to temper that success.
I wish you joy in all your days;
I wish you sadness so that you may better measure joy.
I wish you gladness to overbalance your grief.
I wish you humor and a twinkle in your eye.
I wish you glory and the strength to bear its burdens.
I wish you sunshine on your path and health to carry you on your journey.
I wish you peace — in the world in which you live and in the smallest corner of you heart where truth is kept.
I wish you faith — to help define your living and your life.
More I cannot wish you — except perhaps love — to make all the rest worthwhile.

-Robert A. Ward

Helping a Moth

From: InspirationalArchive.com

A man found a cocoon of an emperor moth. He took it home so that he could watch the moth come out of the cocoon.

On the day a small opening appeared, he sat and watched the moth for several hours as the moth struggled to force its body through that little hole. Then it seemed to stop making any progress. It appeared as if it had gotten as far as it could and it could go no farther. It just seemed to be stuck.

Then the man, in his kindness, decided to help the moth, so he took a pair of scissors and snipped off the remaining bit of the cocoon. The moth then emerged easily, but it had a swollen body and small, shriveled wings. The man continued to watch the moth because he expected that, at any moment, the wings would enlarge and expand to be able to support the body, which would contract in time.

Neither happened! In fact, the little moth spent the rest of its life crawling around with a swollen body and shriveled wings. It never was able to fly.

What the man in his kindness and haste did not understand was that the restricting cocoon and the struggle required for the moth to get through the tiny opening was God’s way of forcing fluid from the body of the moth into its wings so that it would be ready for flight once it achieved its freedom from the cocoon. Freedom and flight would only come after the struggle. By depriving the moth of a struggle, he deprived the moth of health.

Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our life. If God allowed us to go through our life without any obstacles, He would cripple us. We would not be as strong as what we could have been.

How true this is! How many times have we wanted to take the quick way out of struggles and difficulties, to take those scissors and snip off the remaining bits in an attempt to be free. We need to remember that our loving Father will never give us more than we can bear and through our trials and struggles we are strengthened as gold is refined in the fire. May we never let the things we can’t have, or don’t have, or shouldn’t have, spoil our enjoyment of the things we do have and can have.

Don’t focus on the things you DON’T have, enjoy each moment of everyday God has given you.

 

Devotional Message

Matthew 10:1-15 (Good News Translation)

From: American Bible Society

God’s Word: Guiding Us to Follow Jesus

Introduction

Matthew 10:1-15: Jesus calls his twelve disciples together and commissions them to continue the mission he has initiated.

Today’s Scripture: Matthew 10:7

Go and preach, ‘The Kingdom of heaven is near!’

Today’s Reading

1 Jesus called his twelve disciples together and gave them authority to drive out evil spirits and to heal every disease and every sickness. 2 These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon (called Peter) and his brother Andrew; James and his brother John, the sons of Zebedee; 3 Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew, the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; 4 Simon the Patriot, and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed Jesus. 5 These twelve men were sent out by Jesus with the following instructions: “Do not go to any Gentile territory or any Samaritan towns. 6 Instead, you are to go to the lost sheep of the people of Israel. 7 Go and preach, “The Kingdom of heaven is near!” 8 Heal the sick, bring the dead back to life, heal those who suffer from dreaded skin diseases, and drive out demons. You have received without paying, so give without being paid. 9 Do not carry any gold, silver, or copper money in your pockets; 10 do not carry a beggar’s bag for the trip or an extra shirt or shoes or a walking stick. Workers should be given what they need. 11 When you come to a town or village, go in and look for someone who is willing to welcome you, and stay with him until you leave that place. 12 When you go into a house, say, “Peace be with you.” 13 If the people in that house welcome you, let your greeting of peace remain; but if they do not welcome you, then take back your greeting. 14 And if some home or town will not welcome you or listen to you, then leave that place and shake the dust off your feet. 15 I assure you that on the Judgment Day God will show more mercy to the people of Sodom and Gomorrah than to the people of that town!

Reflect

What instructions does Jesus give to his disciples? What qualities does Jesus require of his followers? If you were to hear Jesus’ words, how would you have responded? In what ways do you carry out Jesus’ mission?