THE POWER OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

June 8

Preaching about the Day of Pentecost. I was reminded of the many different people that were in that upper room. About how they each had an agenda much different from others in that room. The eleven disciples could share about all that they had heard and seen Jesus do in His ministry, while his bothers probably wondered why he had not taken time to teach them. His mother Mary was there who for 34 years knew that her Son was the Son of God, and yet there were some disciples there who had only recently met this Jesus. Mary Magdalene, did the disciples accept her yet as Jesus had or did they cast suspicious eyes toward her. And how about the Pharisee, Nicodemus, was he a true disciple or a Sanhedrin spy sent to discover who these believers were. Sitting next to each other in that room could have been Bartimaeus, the blind beggar and the rich Joseph of Arimathea, who donated the tomb for Jesus to be buried in.

A motley crew at best, but they came together around the central figure of Jesus and His promise to wait until something new happened. I’m sure they all had feelings of loss. What were they going to do without Jesus “with” them? Who would teach them the things of God?

But when the beautiful presence of the Holy Spirit descended in that room, Jesus was no longer just “with” them. He was “in” them. The Holy Spirit was teaching them the things of God. They were moved to action.

I saw this in action one Sunday morning when the whole time of Praise and Worship was permeated with the sense of God’s presence in a quiet, yet powerful affirmation of His glory. And when the choir finished singing “In the Presence of Jehovah” the people were standing weeping before Him in worship.

As I asked for those who needed a Miracle to come to the altar, about 20 responded, but instead of praying for each one as I usually would do, I called for the congregation to come and pray for each of them. I saw a Peter, praying with a Philip. A John praying with Mary. An Andrew praying with a lame man by the pool.

As I moved from group to group, I felt such a New Testament atmosphere. True Love and Caring flowing from one to another. It is hard to release ministry sometimes, but yesterday I saw the Holy Spirit do in a few moments, through vessels of clay, some monumental works of healing and miracles. Those lives, both those who were ministered to and those who ministered will never be the same. Pentecost is repeated by the sovereign acts of God.

 

 

Modem Times – Maxims for the Internet Age

  1. Home is where you hang your @
  2. The E-mail of the species is more deadly than the mail.
  3. A journey of a thousand sites begins with a single click.
  4. You can’t teach a new mouse old clicks.
  5. Great groups from little icons grow.
  6. Speak softly and carry a cellular phone.
  7. C:\ is the root of all directories.
  8. Don’t put all your hypes in one home page.
  9. Pentium wise; pen and paper foolish.
  10. The modem is the message.
  11. Too many clicks spoil the browse.
  12. The geek shall inherit the earth.
  13. A chat has nine lives.
  14. Don’t byte off more than you can view.
  15. Fax is stranger than fiction.
  16. What boots up must come down.
  17. Windows will never cease.


24 THINGS TO ALWAYS REMEMBER

“24 Things to Always Remember…

June 7

and One Thing Never to Forget…

 

Your presence is a present to the world.

You’re unique and one of a kind.

Your life can be what you want it to be.

Take the days just one at a time.

 

Count your blessings, not your troubles.

You’ll make it through whatever comes along.

Within you are so many answers.

Understand, have courage, be strong.

 

Don’t put limits on yourself.

So many dreams are waiting to be realized.

Decisions are too important to leave to chance.

Reach for your peak, your goal, and your prize.

 

Nothing wastes more energy than worrying.

The longer one caries a problem, the heavier it gets.

Don’t take things too seriously.

Live a life of serenity, not a life of regrets.

 

Remember that a little love goes a long way.

Remember that a lot . . . goes forever.

Remember that friendship is a wise investment.

Life’s treasures are people . . . together.

 

Realize that it’s never to late.

Do ordinary things in extraordinary ways.

Have health and hope and happiness.

Take the time to wish upon a star.

 

And don’t ever forget . . .

For even a day . . .

How very special you are. “

YOU ARE BLESSED!

 

 

 

Puns…

 

What do you get when you toss a hand grenade into a kitchen in France?

Linoleum blownapart.

 

Did you hear about the red ship and the blue ship that collided?

Both crews were marooned.

 

Eskimos in a kayak were chilly, but when they lit a fire in the craft, it sank; proving once-and-for-all that you can’t have your kayak & heat it, too.



DON’T LOSE YOU CONNECTION

JUNE 4

Posted several years ago but still is relevant.)

“Earlier this evening we realized that there was no dial tone, (Wondered why it was so quiet around here….. LOL), and when we called to report it, was informed that a major cable had been accidently cut and service would be restored by 6 tomorrow. This evening on the way home from church, we passed the tent with the phone guys working inside trying to repair it. . . so if you don’t get this on the morning of June 4, you’ll know why it’s late……. LOL. couldn’t resist that one.

Anyway, it makes you stop to think . . . what if our heavenly line was cut off. Prayers could not be prayed, Praise would not be lifted up, Blessings would be delayed.

Another example: We stopped at Arby’s for dinner, on the way to church, and the new cashier-in-training, was beating on the cash register as if play a drum. I looked at him strangely when he replied, “I sure miss our music.” Now thinking that this kid is a little bid weird, I asked him, “Music?” And he explained. “When the satellite fell out of it’s orbit, we lost the music. Our music was piped in from that satellite.”

We truly live in the communication age. Telephones, Television, Cellular Phones, Computers (PTL), pagers, fax machines, etc. but the most important communication is often the one being neglected, our heavenly communication. God has never had a cable cut, nor a satellite fall out of orbit. He has never been “cut off”. Yet, we fail to use the only unbreakable communication line in existence, the one that can give us the answers we need.

If I can just get one message out today, Communicate one truth. . . YOU ARE BLESSED! Keeps those lines open.”

 

 

If you were to list the ten smartest people you know, who would be the other nine?

No matter how far money goes, it still can’t go as far as the next paycheck.

What most men really liked about their mother’s cooking is that it didn’t cost them anything.

There are those who are not the life of the party until they leave.

Some jobs have to be put off dozens of times before they completely slip your mind.

Sardines are little fish that crawl into a can, lock themselves up and leave the key outside.

A filing cabinet is where papers get lost alphabetically.

Car sickness is the feeling you get when you can’t meet the monthly payments.

Remember, a top banana is supported by the rest of the bunch.

It’s called “instant credit” but what it really means is “instant debt.”

In some restaurants, the catch of the day is the waiter.

If at first you don’t succeed, deny you were even trying.

Nothing is impossible – except dribbling a football.

Nothing widens a narrow driveway quite as much as looking at it with a snow shovel in your hand.

A synonym is the word you use when you can’t spell the other one.

Do it tomorrow–you’ve made enough mistakes today.

The two most common elements in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity.

If at first you don’t succeed, skydiving is not for you.

Money can’t buy happiness, but it sometimes makes misery easier to live with.

The trouble with doing something right the first time is that nobody appreciates how difficult it was.

If only the good die young, what does that say about senior citizens?

Indecision is the key to flexibility.

Always remember to pillage before you burn.

Vital papers will demonstrate their vitality by moving to where you can’t find them.



WHAT IS ANOINTING?

JUNE 1

 “…No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God  (Luke 9:62 KJV)”

“There are no acceptable excuses to turn back, even temporarily!  When God speaks, He knows the full extent of the circumstances around you.  It is interesting to note that God never “discusses” His plans with man,  He only speaks to them.  God is not looking to you and me for additional information and He does not need our input to make the best decision. To make anything happen, God only needs our obedience.”

 “When God pours out a river of joy and laughter upon His people,  He expects only that we should jump in and became saturated.  There is a purpose in what He is doing today that extends far beyond the immediate benefit.  The Holy Spirit is empowering people, anointing them, for God’s work.  I like Bill Ligon’s definition of the anointing: “Tangible evidence of the manifested presence of God.”

“Skeptics, hesitaters and procrastinators do not get anointed.  Observers who stand on the sidelines with labels and maps, identifying for others what God is doing, do not get anointed.  People who are “looking back” get overlooked in any great move of God.”

       –  Mona Johnian,  Fresh Anointing

 

 

Useless Facts

*Q. What is a Noggin?

*A “noggin” is also a half a cupful of whatever.

*Q. How does a lobster breathe?

  1. Takes in water through its legs, lets it out through its head. Odd, but not to the lobster, who thinks we breathe funny maybe.

*Q. What makes an “infant” different from a “baby”?

  1. “Infancy” comes from the Latin for “without language,” so a baby is only an infant until it starts to talk.

 *Don’t you think “Cinnamon” — it’s bark — is a good name for a puppy?

* Q. There are six classes of musical instruments: “string,” “woodwind,” “brass,” “percussion,” “keyboard” and “other.” In which is the harmonica?

  1. “Other.”

*The Omaha Herald in 1877 printed this advisory to passengers of stage coaches: “Spit on the leeward side.”

 *Medical records contain accounts of women who’ve given themselves cesarean sections and men who’ve given themselves appendectomies.

*Lot of animals have hands, sort of. And can hold them out flat. But only humans can turn the palms of the outstretched hands up then down or down then up.

*Only before its first meal of the day can the electric eel zap out that 640 volts.

 The “Second” avenues nationwide outnumber the “First” avenues.

 * Q. How long do big league baseball players use the same gloves?

  1. Infielders, a year. Outfielders, seven to 10 years. Typically.

 * Q. What’s the opposite of “extinct”?

  1. “Extant.”

 8 Drivers drive faster when other cars are around. Whether those cars are behind, in front, beside. Curious how it works.

 * Only captive-born and people-raised parrots can be taught to talk.

*The original mincemeat in mincemeat pies was the flesh of small birds.

 * Researchers say fewer letter carriers are bitten by dogs in England than anywhere else, but it’s not known whether this is due to the temperament of English dogs or to the speed of English carriers.

*Ugly creatures, lobsters. Most remain unmated. Not surprised.

 *Q. Where’d that old name for a dog — “Fido” – come from?

  1. Latin. Means “trusting,” roughly. It’s a cousin of such words as fidelity, faithful, fiduciary.

 *Any fisherman will tell you it’s against the law to use goldfish for bait.

 *In the mid-1960s, scientists came up with straight bananas, but nobody would buy them.

 *Few realize Abraham Lincoln’s likeness is represented not once but twice on the Lincoln penny.



CHURCH IMPETUS

MAY 31

“What happens when a plane takes off – or a car starts uphill – or an athlete begins the game?  Impetus – additional energy – must be released.  Spiritual truths have natural parallels.  The Church today needs a fresh impetus.  How can we repeat the same ritual for hundreds of years and tell ourselves we are being led by God?  Where is the fresh impetus in the Church – the sudden burst of energy that will give us the lead over the world?”

 “What if the Holy Spirit should suddenly manifest Himself in a new or fresh way in your church?  What if He should suddenly manifest Himself in a new way in your personal life?  Are you really prepared to flow with Him if He chooses to change the direction of your life within the next hour?  It is not unlike God to move suddenly in a life:

God spoke suddenly to Moses (Num 12:4)

God uproots the wicked suddenly (Job 5:3)

At the birth of Jesus, the angel of the Lord was joined suddenly by the host of heaven praising God (Luke 2:13)

Pentecost the Holy Spirit came suddenly (Acts 2:2)

Saul of Tarsus, on his way to persecute believers, was stricken to the ground when a light appeared around him suddenly and the Lord spoke to him (Acts 9:3)”

           – Mona Johnian,  Fresh Anointing.

 

Thoughts

Everyone has a photographic memory. Some don’t have film.

Boycott shampoo! Demand the REAL poo!

If you choke a smurf, what color does it turn?

What happens if you get scared half to death twice?

Energizer Bunny arrested, charged with battery.

I poured Spot remover on my dog. Now he’s gone.

I used to have an open mind but my brains kept falling out.

I couldn’t repair your brakes, so I made your horn louder.

Shin: a device for finding furniture in the dark.

How do you tell when you run out of invisible ink?



THE COST OF RIGHTEOUSNESS

MAY 28

“I didn’t want some petty, inferior brand of righteousness that comes from keeping a list of rules when I could get the robust kind that comes from trusting Christ — God’s righteousness.  I gave up all that inferior stuff so I could know Christ personally, experience his resurrection power …  If there was any way to get in on the resurrection from the dead, I wanted to do it.”   Philippians 3:9-11The Message Bible

Most of us have had the experience of going to the store and seeing two seemingly identical items but one is a “brand name” and therefore the price tag reflected that.  So we purchased the cheaper item so we could brag to all our friends about the “bargain.”  

The only problem was that the first time we used it, or washed it, we discovered why it was cheaper.  It was also inferior.  Now, I’m not advocating that we always have to buy the most expensive item, for I’ve seen that carry people into an area of pride as well, but we need to compare the value for the cost.

Self-righteousness does not cost us much because we adjust our lifestyle to fit our righteousness of the moment.  That is, whatever suits us for that day becomes our garment of righteousness.

God’s righteousness cost us even less, since He’s already paid for it and furnishes it freely, but it is necessary for us to “work out our salvation” so that the cloak of God’s righteousness will fit.  God’s righteousness comes in one size.  The exercise of our faith keeps us in the right size to enjoy its fit.  When we become careless or lax in our Christian faith, it begins to not fit as well. 

Have you ever seen a Christian whose righteousness is a little tight and the buttons are stretching?  Have you ever seen a Christian whose righteousness was so loose it looked as though it would fall off at any moment?  The problem is that the quality of God’s righteousness will never shrink nor stretch.  It is always the same.  It is the believer’s responsibility to keep him or herself fit for that righteousness.

You’ve got the highest quality of Righteousness.  Does it fit this morning?

                        Pastor Don

 

A pious man, who had reached the age of 105, suddenly stopped going to synagogue. Alarmed by the old fellow’s absence after so many years of faithful attendance, the Rabbi went to see him. He found him in excellent health, so the Rabbi asked, “How come after all these years we don’t see you at services anymore?”

 The old man lowered his voice. “I’ll tell you, Rabbi,” he whispered. “When I got to be 90, I expected God to take me any day. But then I got to be 95, then 100, then 105. So, I figured that God is very busy and must’ve forgotten about me, and I don’t want to remind Him!”

 

 

Then there’s the time a lady was picking through the frozen turkeys at the grocery store, but couldn’t find one big enough for her family.

She asked a stock boy, “Do these turkeys get any bigger?”

The stock boy replied, “No ma’am, they’re dead.”



KEEP YOUR FEET ON THE ROCK

MAY 27

Keep Your Feet on the Rock when you Reach the End of Your Rope

            “Don’ t quit.  There is a big difference between quitting and changing.  I believe that when God sees someone who doesn’t quit.  He looks ahead and says, ‘There is someone I can use.'”

            “In Galatians 6:9 (NIV) we are told, Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.  Look at this verse carefully. It urges us not to become weary, assuring us that we will — not might — reap a harvest if we do not give up.”

            “God doesn’t quit. It is impossible for Him to do so.  In Philippians 1:6 (NIV) the Apostle Paul writes about being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.  There are several important points in this verse.  The most crucial is the fact that God does not quit.  Therefore, we can have great confidence that He will complete the good work He has begun in us.  He will see us through every step of the way until we have reached our ultimate destination.”

            “One of the best scriptural examples of a person who did not quit is Joseph.  He had many reasons to justify giving up.  First, when he was trapped in the pit into which his brothers had thrown him because of their jealousy.  I am sure he said to himself, “This is not the way I dreamed my life would work out.’ Later on, he had a marvelous opportunity to become discouraged and quit when he was unjustly accused and thrown into prison for a crime he did not commit.  Again he could have said to himself. ‘This is not right; I’m not supposed to be here.'”

            “But eventually the dream which God had given Joseph became reality. He was elevated from prisoner to prime minister in one day.  Although Joseph did not know or understand the steps through which the Lord would lead him, he remained true to his God. Despite the trials and obstacles he faced, he did not quit.”

            “There is no greater reward than that which comes as a result of holding fast to the Word and the Will of God.”

                                    John L. Mason,  An Enemy Called Average

 

 

A man is driving down a country road, when he spots a farmer standing in the middle of a huge field of grass. He pulls the car over to the side of the road and notices that the farmer is just standing there, doing nothing, looking at nothing.

The man gets out of the car, walks all the way out to the farmer and asks him, “Ah excuse me mister, but what are you doing?”

The farmer replies, “I’m trying to win a Nobel Prize.”

“How?” asks the man, puzzled.

“Well I heard they give the Nobel Prize . . .  to people who are out standing in their field.”

 

 

A father is in church with three of his young children, including his five year old daughter.  As was customary, he sat in the very front row so that the children could properly witness the service.

During this particular service, the minister was performing the baptism of a tiny infant.   The little five year old girl was taken by this, observing that he was saying something and pouring water over the infant’s head.

With a quizzical look on her face, the little girl turned to her father and asked:  “Daddy, why is he brainwashing that baby??”



LOVE – A PERMANENT RESIDENT

MAY 26

“God is love.  When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us.  This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home, and mature in us, so that we’re free of worry on Judgment Day — Our standing in the world is identical with Christ’s.”         1 John 4:16-17            The Message Bible

There is a big difference between a house guest and a permanent resident.

I often tease my parents in that while I was away at College, they built a new home and moved…. but I found them anyway….. LOL.  But it is true that they did move during my sophomore year at college and therefore the house where they have lived for the past 30+ years is a house where I never did live.  It is a wonderful house, in a great neighborhood, but it is just not the “home” that I grew up in.

It is very good when we allow “Love” to dwell in the houses of our spirit. But if “love” is a temporary boarder, that is, one who comes and goes when it is convenient, it will never reproduce the long standing purpose for which it is intended, to make us more like God.

“God is Love.”  To be like Him is to be His Love revealed to our world. The only way to do that is to let “love have the run of the house” or be in everything that we do.

The more that we “love”, especially love when it is hard or difficult to “love” the stronger that Love gets.  It’s like exercise.  When you use muscles over and over again they get stronger and more responsive to the challenge.  So the more we love, the stronger it becomes ingrained in us and the more responsive it becomes to our neighbor.

Today, find someone new to “love”.  You never know what kind of permanent resident, Love can become when you give it a chance.

            Pastor Don     

 

 

I Need The Day Off

Smith goes to see his supervisor in the front office. “Boss,” he says, “we’re doing some heavy house-cleaning at home tomorrow, and my wife needs me to help with the attic and the garage, moving and hauling stuff.”

“We’re short-handed, Smith” the boss replies. “I can’t give you the day off.”

“Thanks, boss,” says Smith “I knew I could count on you!”

                                                           

The School Play

Billy’s father picked him up from school to take him to a dental appointment. Knowing the acting roles for the school play were being posted that day, he asked Billy if he got a part.

Billy enthusiastically announced that he’d gotten a part. “I play a man who’s been married for twenty years.”

“That’s great, son. Keep up the good work and before you know it they’ll be giving you a speaking part.”



SPIRITUAL EXCERCISE

MAY 25

“You get us ready for life: you probe for our soft spots, you knock off our rough edges.  And I’m feeling so fit, so safe: made right, kept right. God is solemn honor does things right.   Psalm 7:9-11  The Message Bible.

The other night I saw an infomercial (we know how to coin names don’t we), that was selling a wonderful product that would cause you to lose weight, gain energy and fulfill all the body’s vitamins requirements.  It was a simple pill that you take before bedtime and “while you sleep”, you slumber your way to good health.

RIGHT!  We are so caught up in the fitness craze that we’ll do anything to get fit, except do the right things.  Discipline of what you eat and how you exercise is the only way to get and stay physically fit.

The same is true of our spiritual muscular system.  What we eat and how we exercise will determine our Spiritual Fitness. 

What we eat has to be a balanced and healthy diet.  Good books are great, but don’t forget your daily minimum requirements of God’s Word.  God’s Word is compared to the fruits and vegetables that the physical body needs to eat.  There are some who try to live on the cake and ice cream of some great Christian authors and their books or tapes.  And there are some who eat nothing but the junk food of TV and non-religious materials.  Eating properly is the key to getting a good start to your day.

And then there is the exercise that we need.  Exercise for exercise sake is not the way to build a strong body.  Neither is “good works” for “good works” sake the way to build the spiritual man.  We must be available to use God’s good works to help and assist others in their struggles through life.  To point someone else to the cross or to the work of the Holy Spirit is the exercise that brings health and happiness to the spiritual man.  I guess the simple answer to what kind of exercise do I need is this. Does it bring notice to my super spiritual life or does it bring glory to God?  I’ve seen some pretty muscular Christians out there, you know what I mean, muscles on top of muscles, but never able to lend a helping hand for fear they might pull one of those precious muscles.  God doesn’t need an “Incredible Hulks.” He needs someone who will reach out and give a hand up to someone down in the gutter.

The Holy Spirit is the ultimate Fitness Trainer.  He will guide you into all truth.  So starting today, let’s watch what we eat, and get the exercise we need.  You’ll have more spiritual energy than ever before.

            Pastor Don

 

What A Preacher Does For A Living:

The Sunday sermon was long and tedious, especially for the six year old boy, who squirmed through most of it.

“What does the pastor do the rest of the week,” the boy asked as  he and his father headed home?”

“Oh,” his father responded, “he has plenty to do.” He counsels people with problems all week long, he visits the sick, conducts funerals and weddings writes the church bulletin. And then there’s a lot of hard work preparing his Sunday sermon.”

“Hard work? The Sermon?”

“Yeah,’ said the father, “he works hard on that sermon.”



GOOD CITIZENS

MAY 24

“Make the Master proud of you by being good citizens… Exercise your freedom by serving God, not by breaking the rules. Treat everyone you meet with dignity.  Love your spiritual family.  Revere God. Respect the government.”  1 Peter 2:13,16-17 The Message Bible.

The Message Bible has such a simple way of explaining our responsibility to show good citizenship in this world in which we live.  Many are looking for ways to avoid their obligation to the government by using the cry of “religious freedom.”  But God never intended for Christians to be less than “model citizens” of the country to which we are born.

Most of us live in the United States of America, and like me I’m sure, are sick of the way many abuse the idea of “freedoms” or “civil liberties”. It is very disconcerting to see the “heathen rage” while the saints are deprived their own rights.  But Peter reminds us that we are to serve God in whatever situation that we find ourselves.

Freedom is the opportunity to do “right” not “what I want to do.” Freedom recognizes the needs of others as well as our own. Freedom gives us the privilege to do “unto others” …. even better than they do unto us.

Prejudice hinders us from treating one another with dignity and honor.  One of the key elements of our national moral failures is the lack of dignity shown one another.  It’s a put-down generation out there that corrupts our appreciation for others.

Dr. W. R. Corvin once said, “You cannot push someone else down without pulling yourself down with them. But if you will lift others up, it will naturally cause you to be lifted as well.”  That advice has been one of the mainstays of my lifestyle.  It is so much better on us to lift someone else up.

So today, be a model citizen.  Not only of your local government but of heaven, for after all, that is where your true citizenship is found.  Lift someone up.  Lift Jesus up. And He will draw others to Him through you and God will lift you up at the same time.

            Pastor Don

 

HOW TO KILL A CHURCH

  1. Don’t come.
  2. If you do come, come late.
  3. When you come, be grouchy.
  4. Try to find fault with everything.
  5. At every service ask yourself, “What do I get out of this?” Never mind how you might help others get something out of it.
  6. Never accept an office. It is better to stay outside and criticize.
  7. Visit other churches about half the time to let your pastor know you are not tied to him or her.
  8. Let the staff do all the work and earn their pay.
  9. Sit pretty well back. Don’t imagine the front seats were meant for you; people might think you are conceited.
  10. Never sing. Try to look bored instead.
  11. Never pay in advance. Wait till you get your money’s worth.
  12. Frequently look at your watch.
  13. Never encourage the preacher. If you like a sermon, keep mum about it. You wouldn’t want your pastor to get a big head.
  14. It is good to tell your pastors’ failings to any strangers that might happen in. Otherwise they might be a long time in finding them out. Of course, you can’t expect to get new members for the church with such pastors.
  15. If your church unfortunately happens to be harmonious, call it apathy, or indifference, or lack of zeal.
  16. If there happen to be a few zealous workers in the church, make a protest against the church being run by a small clique.
  17. Don’t teach Sunday School or be a youth advisor.
  18. Scowl.
  19. If you see a stranger in the congregation, make him or her as uncomfortable as you can.
  20. Never pray for the church.

 




 

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