CONSIDER THE BIRDS

DECEMBER 20

 Live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble.

(1 Peter 3:8 NIV)

Have you ever seen a flock of geese flying in a “V” formation? What a lesson they provide for you and me! When one of them gets sick or wounded, it never falls from formation by itself. Two other birds fallout with it, and follow the ailing bird to the ground. One of them is usually the mate of the wounded bird, since geese mate for life and are extremely loyal. Once on the ground, the healthy birds protect and care for the sick one; even to the point of throwing themselves between it and any predator. They stay there until the wounded bird is either able to fly again, or until it dies. Only then do they leave and rejoin the flock.

That’s what the family of God should be like. Listen again to these words: “Live in harmony; be sympathetic, love as brothers.” Have you ever seen brotherly love in action? Brothers may fight among

themselves, but if someone else touches one of them, he often ends up fighting them all!

When you don’t agree with your brother, don’t tear him down-pray for him; and if he fails, pick him up!

LET THE WORLD SEE HOW MUCH WE LOVE ONE ANOTHER. (SEE JOHN 13:35.)

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY

 

Rudolf to Blitzen

According to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, while both male and female reindeer grow antlers in the summer each year (the only members of the deer family, Cervidae, to have females do so). Male reindeer drop their antlers at the beginning of winter, usually late November to mid December.

   Female reindeer, however, retain their antlers till after they give birth in the spring. Therefore, according to every historical rendition depicting Santa’s reindeer, every single one of them, from Rudolf to Blitzen…. had to be a female.

   We should’ve known this when when they were able to find their way.

 The Lost Purse

A lady lost her handbag in the bustle of Christmas shopping. It was found by an honest little boy and returned to her. Looking in her purse, she commented, “Hmmm…. That’s funny. When I lost my bag there was a $20 bill in it. Now there are twenty $1 bills.”

        The boy quickly replied, “That’s right, lady. The last time I found a lady’s purse, she didn’t have any change for a reward.”

 



“BANG, BANG, YOU’RE DEAD”

DECEMBER 19

Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. (John 12:24)

Aman once received a telephone call, and when he answered it a voice on the other end said, “Bang! Bang! You’re dead!” Then he recognized the familiar voice of a friend saying, “John, I was just calling to remind you that we all need to die to ourselves every day.” That’s hard to remember! Paul says, “For we know that our old self was crucified with him, so that the body of sin might be rendered powerless” (Romans 6:5), Some days our “old man” is anything but dead. We’re aware of him when someone steps on our toes; when we don’t get the appreciation we think we deserve, self-pity rises to sit on the throne, I’m sure you know what I mean!

The Christian life is so opposite from the way of the world. You can’t rule unless you’re willing to serve. You can’t receive unless you’re willing to give. You can’t live unless you’re willing to die to self.

Jesus said unless you die to self and sow your lite into the lives of others, you’ll always be alone. Here’s the answer to loneliness! Find a need that no one else is meeting, and sow your lift like a seed into it.

Jesus said, “He that is greatest among you shall be your servant” (Matthew 23:11).

REMEMBER, “THE WAY TO THE THRONE ROOM IS THROUGH THE SERVANTS’ QUARTERS,”

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY

 

Santa’s A Woman

I think Santa Claus is a woman….I hate to be the one to defy a sacred myth, but I believe he’s a she. Think about it. Christmas is a big, organized, warm, fuzzy, nurturing social deal, and I have a tough time believing a guy could possibly pull it all off!

      For starters, the vast majority of men don’t even think about selecting gifts until Christmas Eve. Once at the mall, they always seem surprised to find only Ronco products, socket wrench sets, and mood rings left on the shelves. On this count alone, I’m convinced Santa is a woman.

      Surely, if he were a man, everyone in the universe would wake up Christmas morning to find a rotating musical Chia Pet under the tree, still in the bag.

      Another problem for a he-Santa would be getting there. First of all, there would be no reindeer because they would all be dead, gutted and strapped to the rear bumper of the sleigh amid wide-eyed, desperate claims that buck season had been extended. Blitzen’s rack would already be on the way to the taxidermist.

      Even if the male Santa DID have reindeer, he’d still have transportation problems because he would inevitably get lost up there in the snow and clouds and then refuse to stop and ask for directions.

      Other reasons why Santa can’t possibly be a man:

       – Men can’t pack a bag.

       – Men would rather be dead than caught wearing red velvet.

       – Men don’t answer their mail.

       – Men would refuse to allow their physique to be described even in jest as anything remotely resembling a “bowlful of jelly.”

       – Men aren’t interested in stockings unless somebody’s wearing them.

       – Having to do the Ho Ho Ho thing would seriously inhibit their ability to pick up women.

       – Finally, being responsible for Christmas would require a commitment.



GOD WILL USE WHATEVER YOU’VE GOT

DECEMBER 17

 What is that in thine hand? (Exodus 4:2)

When God asked Moses, “What is that in thine hand?” you can almost hear the discouragement in his reply: “A rod.” Just a walking stick. But it was what came naturally to him! Today, the Lord wants you to know that He’ll use what comes naturally to you! The secret is to put what you’ve got into His hands. Make it available to Him. When Samson faced a thousand Philistines, he had nothing to fight with but the jaw bone of an ass. It was what was available to him! It was enough! Reverently speaking, God could have used a daffodil, if that was all Samson had had that day!

When Pastor Ray Bevin from Wales preached recently on this thought, a church secretary came to him in tears and said, “I see it! All my life I’ve felt inadequate and inferior because I wasn’t talented like other people. I never thought God could use me, but today I see God has been using me/or years. Every time I sit down at my word processor and type seventy words a minute, that’s God using my gift!”

Stop trying to be someone else, and discover who you are. Instead of trying to compare yourself with others, or change what God has made you, recognize the gifts and strengths you’ve got, and start building on them.

YOU’LL BE AMAZED WHAT GOD CAN DO WITH THEM!

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY

 

  1. What do you call a broke Santa Claus?

Saint-nickel-less.

 

5. What do you call a kid who doesn’t believe in Santa?

A rebel without a Claus.

 

  1. Why did Frosty ask for a divorce?

His wife was a total flake.



LIVING FOR OTHERS

DECEMBER 16

He never thought of doing a kindness. (Psalm 109:16 NIV)

Make sure that what you’re most concerned about is what God’s most concerned about. Otherwise you’ll have eternity to wish you had done things differently! The King James Version says, “He remembered not to show mercy.” Could that charge be laid at your door? You’re ambitious, hard-working, and responsible, but have you forgotten to show mercy-especially to those who seem to deserve it least? David said, “With the merciful thou wilt show thyself merciful” (Psalm 18:25).

Listen to this moving illustration:

When the British government sought to reward General Gordon for his brilliant service in China, he declined all money and titles, but accepted a gold medal inscribed with the record of his thirty- three engagements. It was his most prized possession. But after his death the medal could not be found. Eventually it was learned that he had sent it to Manchester during a severe famine, directing that it should be melted down and used to buy bread for the poor. On the date he sent it, these words were found written in Gordon’s diary: “The last earthly thing in this world that I valued, I have given to the Lord Jesus Christ.”

THERE IS NO WAY TO LIVE FOR JESUS WITHOUT LIVING FOR OTHERS!

Taken from the Best of the WORD FOR YOU TODAY.

 

  1. How did the ornament get addicted to Christmas?

He was hooked on trees his whole life.

 

  1. Why was Santa’s little helper depressed?

Because he had very low elf esteem.

 

  1. What does the Grinch do with a baseball bat?

Hits a gnome runs.

 



HAVE YOU DISCOVERED YOUR GIFTS?

DECEMBER 18

For God’s gifts and his call are irrevocable. (Romans 11:29)

If you’ve never discovered your gift, or if you’ve been running from it-it’s still there! That means you can choose to do something with it, beginning right now. God’s gifts are never loans; they are always deposits. They are never exhausted or depleted. The more you use them, the stronger they get. Paul told Timothy, “Stir up the gift that is within you” (2 Timothy 1:6).

Author John Mason says, “You were born an original; don’t die a copy!” Discover your gift! In the time of famine, Elijah asked his servant to go and look at the horizon and come back and tell him what he saw. He said, “I see a little cloud the size of a man’s hand” (1 Kings 18:44). But that little cloud was the beginning of a downpour and the end of a drought. Don’t despise your small beginnings. Walt Disney

told people, “This whole thing began with a mouse.”

In the New Testament, they started with 120 believers against the might of pagan Rome, but they ended up changing the world. There are people waiting to be reached, saved, and blessed by what God has placed within you.

ASK HIM TO HELP YOU DISCOVER YOUR GIFT, UNLOCK IT, AND OFFER IT BACK TO HIM FOR HIS GLORY.

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY

 

Jewish lady named Mrs. Rosenberg many years ago was stranded late one night at a fashionable resort – one that did not admit Jews. The desk clerk looked down at his book and said, “Sorry, no room. The hotel is full.”

The Jewish lady said, “But your sign says that you have vacancies.”

 The desk clerk stammered and then said curtly, “You know that we do not admit Jews. Now if you will try the other side of town…”

 Mrs. Rosenberg stiffened noticeable and said, “I’ll have you know I converted to your religion.”

 The desk clerk said, “Oh, yeah, let me give you a little test. How was Jesus born?”

  Mrs. Rosenberg replied, “He was born to a virgin named Mary in a little town called Bethlehem.”

  “Very good,” replied the hotel clerk. “Tell me more.”

  Mrs. Rosenberg replied, “He was born in a manger.”

  “That’s right,” said the hotel clerk. “And why was he born in a manger?”

  Mrs. Rosenberg said loudly, “Because a jerk like you in the hotel wouldn’t give a Jewish lady a room for the night!”

 

 



STRESS FRACTURE

DECEMBER 13

Come unto me, all of you who are weary. (Matthew 11:28 NLT)

A recent Sports Illustrated article says; “Stress fractures begin when the shocks and strains of playing game after game create tiny cracks in the outer layers of bone. When those cracks become large enough to cause severe pain, they’re known as stress fractures.” What a picture!

If you’ve ever had a “stress-fractured spirit” or an aching heart, you know what I’m talking about. It can eat at you all day and keep you awake all night. You can numb it with alcohol or drugs, an illicit affair, or a hyperactive lifestyle, but they just make it worse! So what do you do? Two things: First, change your focus! Jesus said “Come unto me … and I will give you rest … let me teach you … and you will find rest for your souls (Matthew 11 :28 NIT).

Second, change your lifestyle! Stop making a big deal out of everything. Laugh more. (Can you even remember the last time you laughed?) Admit your imperfections. Let some stuff go. Stop trying to

be Wonder Woman or Mr. Fix-It! Get away for some fun. Yes, Christians need fun, too! Cancel some of your “not so important” meetings. If you want things to change-you’ll have to change them!

TALK TO GOD TODAY; HE’LL GIVE YOU THE STRENGTH TO D0 IT.

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY.

 

The Twelve Days of Christmas Cutbacks (CONT’D)

Eleven pipers piping and twelve drummers drumming is a simple case of the band getting too big. A substitution with a string quartet, a cutback on new music and no uniforms will produce savings which will drop right down to the bottom line;

 

We can expect a substantial reduction in assorted people, fowl, animals, and other expenses. Though incomplete, studies indicate that stretching deliveries over twelve days is inefficient. If we can drop ship in one day, service levels will be improved. Regarding the lawsuit filed by the attorney’s association seeking expansion to include the legal profession (“thirteen lawyers-a-suing) action is pending.

 

Lastly, it is not beyond consideration that deeper cuts may be necessary in the future to stay competitive. Should that happen, the Board will request management to scrutinize the Snow White Division to see if seven dwarfs is the right number.



RECEIVING – SEARCHING – BELIEVING

DECEMBER 12

They received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures dally, whether those things were so. Therefore many of them believed. (Acts 17:11-12)

What a testimony! The new Berean Christians were so hungry for God that they received the Word with a ready mind, then took it home and studied it for themselves to see if the things they had heard were really so. What a contrast to the Athenians, who “spent their time in nothing else, but either to tell, or to hear some new thing” (Acts 17:21).

We are living in such an age today! Many are searching for something new to interest them, move them, and entertain them. Recently someone asked, “What has God been saying to you?” I replied, “The same thing He’s been saying for a long time; and He’s going to keep saying it until I do something about it.”

Do you want to succeed? Listen to God’s formula for a happy and successful life: “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then shalt thou good success” (Joshua 1:8). This formula will work for you if make it part of your daily life.

GET INTO THE WORD AND WATCH THE DIFFERENCE IT MAKES IN YOUR LIFE.

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY.

 

The Twelve Days of Christmas Cutbacks (CONT’D)

As you know, the eight maids-a-milking concept has been under heavy scrutiny by the EEOC. A male/female balance in the workforce is being sought. The more militant maids consider this a dead-end job with no upward mobility. Automation of the process may permit the maids to try a-mending, a-mentoring or a-mulching;

 

Nine ladies dancing has always been an odd number. This function will be phased out as these individuals grow older and can no longer do the steps;

 

Ten Lords-a-leaping is overkill. The high cost of Lords plus the expense of international air travel prompted the Compensation Committee to suggest replacing this group with ten out-of-work congressmen. While leaping ability may be somewhat sacrificed, the savings are significant because we expect an oversupply of unemployed congressmen this year;



GOD IS YOUR SOURCE

DECEMBER 11

Everything we have has come from you, and we only give you what is yours already! (1 Chronicles 29:14 TLB)

Sometimes we forget that, and we act like our employer or somebody else is our source. No! They may be the instrument God uses, but He alone is the Source. Listen: “Everything … has come from you.” He holds the deed and title to absolutely everything we have.

An old lady who hadn’t eaten for days was praying for bread. Two boys heard her and ran to the store, bought a loaf of bread, then climbed up on the roof and dropped it down the chimney. The old woman was thrilled, gave thanks, and began to eat. Later, when the boys knocked on the door and asked her what had happened, she told them how she had been praying for bread and God had sent a loaf down the chimney. They laughed and said, “We heard you praying, we bought the bread, and we dropped it down the chimney. Now what do you think?” She replied, “The devil may have delivered it; but God still sent it!”

Even if God has to turn the devil into His errand boy, He will come through for you! David said, “I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread” (Psalm 37:25 NIV). Have you?

REMEMBER, GOD IS STILL YOUR SOURCE!

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY.

 

The Twelve Days of Christmas Cutbacks (CONT’D)

The five golden rings have been put on hold by the Board of Directors. Maintaining a portfolio based on one commodity could have negative implications for institutional investors. Diversification into other precious metals as well as a mix of T-bills and high technology stocks appear to be in order;

 

The six geese-a-laying constitutes a luxury which can no longer be afforded. It has long been felt that the production rate of one egg per goose per day is an example of the decline in productivity. Three geese will be let go, and an upgrading in the selection procedure by personnel will assure management that from now on every goose it gets will be a good one;

 

The seven swans-a-swimming is obviously a number chosen in better times. The function is primarily decorative. Mechanical swans are on order. The current swans will be retrained to learn some new strokes and therefore enhance their outplacement;



SCARING BIRDS OR SOWING SEEDS

DECEMBER 10

At the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. (Galatians 6:9 NIV)

Jesus told the story of a farmer who sowed seed in four different kinds of ground, but only the first could produce anything. What happened to the seed in the other three? Weeds choked the second,

the third was ruined by rocks, and the fourth was devoured by birds.

And that’s still how it works! You either spend your life pulling weeds, removing rocks, scaring birds-or sowing seeds. Make the right choice and you prosper; make the wrong one, and it’ll be a long, hard

winter.

Here are your options today: (1) Quit because of the “weeds” that attempt to choke the life out of your dreams. (2) Get discouraged because of the “rocks” you have to climb over or go around on your way to your goals. (3) Exhaust yourself fighting off “birds” that constantly attack your values and try to rob you of your vision. (4) Go through life sowing “good seeds” and reaping good harvests. It’s up to you!

Negative thinking will always empower your problem and keep you from reaching your destiny! lt’Il ensure that your harvest never makes it to the barn! So focus on the end game. When things go wrong, don’t you go wrong with them! Remember, God has promised that when the time is right-you will reap!

WHEN YOU GET UP EACH DAY. TELL YOURSELF, IT’S TIME TO GO OUT AND DO SOME MORE SOWING.

Taken from the BEST OF THE WORD FOR  YOU TODAY

 

The Twelve Days of Christmas Cutbacks (CONT’D)

The two turtle doves represent a redundancy that is simply not cost effective. In addition, their romance during working hours could not be condoned. The positions are therefore eliminated;

 

The three French hens will remain intact. After all, everyone loves the French;

 

The four calling birds were replaced by an automated voice mail system, with a call waiting option. An analysis is underway to determine who the birds have been calling, how often and how long they talked;

 



GUT LEVEL HONESTY

DECEMBER 9

Thou shall not bear false witness. (Matthew 19:18)

In a recent major survey, people were asked, “What would you be willing to do for ten million dollars?” (Are you sitting down?) Twenty-five percent of them said they’d abandon their families; 23 percent said they’d become a prostitute for a week; 7 percent said they’d even murder a stranger!

Are you shocked? Are you saying, “I’d never do that”? Don’t be so quick-the survey also revealed that Christians were “almost as likely as non-Christians” to falsify their tax: returns, call in sick when they were not, cheat on their mates, or tear down someone else’s character to make themselves look better. Have you done any of those things recently?

Listen to these words: “Don’t lie to each other, for you have stripped off your old evil nature and all its wicked deeds. In its place you have clothed yourselves with a brand new nature that is continually being

renewed as you learn more and more about Christ” (Colossians 3: 10 NIT). Note the words “you have clothed yourselves. “It’s a garment you have to put on every day!

Want a challenge? Start modeling the truth … the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help you God. Think the truth! Face the truth! Love the truth! Pursue the truth! Walk in the truth!  

FROM THIS DAY FORWARD, PRACTICE “GUT-LEVEL HONESTY.”

Taken from the BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY

 

The Twelve Days of Christmas Cutbacks

As a further restructuring, today’s global challenges require the North Pole to continue to look for better, more competitive steps. Effective immediately, the following economy measures are to take place in the “Twelve Days of Christmas” subsidiary:

 

The partridge will be retained, but the pear tree never turned out to be the cash crop forecasted. It will be replaced by a plastic hanging plant, providing considerable savings in maintenance;




 

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