ALLOW GOD TO SHAPE YOU

OCTOBER 28

We are the clay, and You our potter. ISAIAH 64:8 NKJV

Imagine a beautiful china teacup saying: “I wasn’t always like this. There was a time when I was just a cold, hard, colorless lump of day. One day the potter picked me up and said, ‘I could do something with this.’ Then he started to put pressure on me and change my shape. I said, ‘What are you doing? That hurts. Stop!’ But he said, ‘Not yet.’ Then he put me on a wheel and began to spin me around and around until I shouted, ‘Let me off.’ He replied, ‘Not yet.’ Then he shaped me into a cup and put me in a hot oven. I cried, ‘Let me out of here, I’m suffocating.’ But he looked at me and said, ‘Not yet.’ When he took

me out, I thought his work on me was over, but then he started to paint me. I couldn’t believe what he did next. He put me back into the oven, and I said, ‘I can’t stand this, please let me out!’ But be said, ‘Not yet.’ Finally he took me out of the oven and set me on a shelf where I thought he had forgotten me. Then one day be took me off the shelf and held me up before a mirror. I couldn’t believe my eyes. I had become a beautiful teacup that everyone wants to buy.”

There are things going on in your life today that you don’t understand. When you finally get to the place God wants you to be, you’ll realize that He has been making YOU into a vessel He can use, bless, and use to bless others. So, allow God to shape you!

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY

 

You Might be in a Country Church if:

  1. Prayers regarding the weather are a standard part of every worship service.

 

  1. A singing group is known as “The O.K. Chorale.”

 

  1. The church directory doesn’t have last names.

 

  1. The pastor wears boots.

 

  1. Four generations of one family sit together in worship every Sunday.


CARING FOR THE CAREGIVER (2)

OCTOBER 26

Bear one another’s burdens. GALATIANS 6:2 NKJV

 

Millions of caregivers are at risk because of self-neglect. Suzanne Mintz of the National Family Caregivers Association has been taking care of her husband, who has multiple sclerosis, for years. Her breaking point came the day he fell, “AlI could do was drag him across the floor,” she said. “I’m five feet one; he’s five feet eight. It took forty-five minutes … that’s when I knew this wasn’t a one-person job.” The Bible says: “We who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength” (Ro 15:1 NAS). Experts in care giving offer this helpful advice: Compromise: If you’re a relative, avoid family disputes. Don’t let old issues divide you; it’s time to stick together. Co- ordinate: If you’re good with insurance and legal documents, offer your services. Help prepare a game plan for when an illness advances; adult children often avoid that conversation. Encourage, Help the caregiver to find professional support. If they’re uncomfortable with in-person support groups, many organizations have on-line resources. Facilitate: Ask somebody objective, a pastor or social worker, to negotiate in stressful

situations where the caregiver is struggling with the patient, family members, or medical providers. Investigate: Locating books and websites and contacting organizations that help the caregiver learn more about a patient’s illness, can save them time. Listen: Asking the caregiver to tell you their story,

can provide a much-needed release and help you understand their needs. Socialize: Organize events with family, community and church, and if possible include the patient. Remember, by carrying somebody else’s burdens even for a little while, you’re fulfilling “the law of Christ” (Gal 6:2).

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY.

 

You might be in a country church if:

  1. The doors are never locked.

 

  1. The Call to Worship is, “Y’all come on in!”

 

  1. People grumble about Noah letting coyotes on the Ark.

 

  1. The Preacher says, “I’d like to ask Bubba to help take up the offering”

– and five guys stand up.

 

  1. The restroom is outside.


CARING FOR THE CAREGIVER (1)

OCTOBER 26

Bear one another’s burdens. GALATIANS 6:2 NKJV

 

Millions of caregivers are at risk because of self-neglect. Suzanne Mintz of the National Family Caregivers Association has been taking care of her husband, who has multiple sclerosis, for years. Her breaking point came the day he fell, “AlI could do was drag him across the floor,” she said. “I’m five feet one; he’s five feet eight. It took forty-five minutes … that’s when I knew this wasn’t a one-person job.” The Bible says: “We who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength” (Ro 15:1 NAS). Experts in care giving offer this helpful advice: Compromise: If you’re a relative, avoid family disputes. Don’t let old issues divide you; it’s time to stick together. Co- ordinate: If you’re good with insurance and legal documents, offer your services. Help prepare a game plan for when an illness advances; adult children often avoid that conversation. Encourage, Help the caregiver to find professional support. If they’re uncomfortable with in-person support groups, many organizations have on-line resources. Facilitate: Ask somebody objective, a pastor or social worker, to negotiate in stressful

situations where the caregiver is struggling with the patient, family members, or medical providers. Investigate: Locating books and websites and contacting organizations that help the caregiver learn more about a patient’s illness, can save them time. Listen: Asking the caregiver to tell you their story,

can provide a much-needed release and help you understand their needs. Socialize: Organize events with family, community and church, and if possible include the patient. Remember, by carrying somebody else’s burdens even for a little while, you’re fulfilling “the law of Christ” (Gal 6:2).

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY.

 

You might be in a country church if:

  1. The doors are never locked.

 

  1. The Call to Worship is, “Y’all come on in!”

 

  1. People grumble about Noah letting coyotes on the Ark.

 

  1. The Preacher says, “I’d like to ask Bubba to help take up the offering”

– and five guys stand up.

 

  1. The restroom is outside.


RANSOMED, REDEEMED, RESTORED!

OCTOBER 23, 2020

He provided redemption for his people. PSALM 111:9 NIV

Ever been to a pawnshop? You’ll find them in most major cities. The idea is simple; if you need money, you take a valuable item like jewelry or a musical instrument to the shop where the pawnbroker appraises it and gives you cash. But if you don’t return within the specified time to redeem it, you forfeit ownership. Although it was yours originally, you no longer have legal possession till you pay the price to get it back. And if you wait too long, it can be lost forever.

 Have you ever thought of yourself as somebody who needs to be redeemed, so you can be returned to your rightful owner? The Bible says God created us to enjoy fellowship with Him. But sin caused us to fall into “the snare of the devil. .. held captive … to do his will” (2Ti 2:26 NAS). Restoration to God,

your rightful owner, could only come through redemption. And that’s exactly what God did! “God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (jn 3:16). Christ’s death on the cross was the price of your redemption; that’s

how much God values you! But redemption only becomes a reality when you realize that you’re a sinner, and trust in Christ as your Savior. The moment you do, He reunites you with your heavenly Father-ransomed, redeemed, restored to your original owner. So the question is: have you taken God up on His offer of salvation, the one that makes you a member of His family? If you’re able to read this, it’s not too late. You can do it right now wherever you are.

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY.

 

A large corporation recently hired several cannibals. “You are all part of our team now,” said the HR (Human Resources) rep during the welcoming briefing. “You get all of the usual benefits and you can go to the cafeteria for something to eat, but please don’t eat any of the other employees.” The cannibals promised they would not.

Four weeks later their boss remarked, “You’re all working very hard and I’m satisfied with your work. However, one of our secretaries has disappeared. Do any of you know what happened to her?” The cannibals all shook their heads, “No.”

After the boss had left, the leader of the cannibals said to the others, “Which one of you idiots ate the secretary?” A hand rose hesitantly.

“You fool!” the leader continued. “For four weeks we’ve been eating managers and no one noticed anything. But NOOOooo, you had to go and eat someone who actually does something!!!”



MAKE THAT YOUR ATTITUDE, TOO!

OCTOBER 22, 2020

Think on these things. PHILIPPIANS 4:8

Your ability to succeed in life often comes down to a single choice: how you react to what has been done to you in the past, or is being done to you right now. Dr. Viktor Frankl endured the Holocaust by this principle. The Nazis killed his family, placed him in a concentration camp, starved and beat him. When the war ended Frankl was neither broken, bowed nor bitter. When asked how he endured such treatment with a positive outlook he said, “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of human freedoms, to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s

own way.”

Ground Zero is a massive canyon where the Twin Towers once stood. Three thousand people died there. And how did New Yorkers choose to respond? A sign at the edge of Ground Zero proclaims, “The human spirit is not measured by the size of the act, but by the size of the heart.” That’s an attitude terrorists will never conquer. And it’s the attitude God’s ‘Word calls us to adopt: “Whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report … think on these things.”

Every day you choose the clothes you wear, the food you eat, and the attitude you adopt. And there are only two kinds of attitudes-good ones and bad ones. A good attitude is the one the Psalmist adopted when he woke up each morning: “This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it” (Ps 118:24 NKJV). Make that your attitude too!

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY

 

The secretary kept turning pages of the dictionary until finally another office worker asked what she was trying to find.

“Bankruptcy,” said the secretary.

“Well, why are you looking way back there?”

​”I know how to spell bank,” the secretary said, “and now I’m looking for ruptcy.” …



SERVE, DON’T STRIVE

OCTOBER 21, 2020

Jesus … made Himself of no reputation. PHILIPPIANS 2:5-7 NKJV

The story is told of an ambitious student at a very competitive college. Just before entering his senior year he met an Eastern mystic who said, “Can’t you see you’re polluting your soul with this success-oriented way of living? Your idea of happiness is to work around the clock, to study so you can get a better grade than the next guy. That’s not how you are supposed to live. Come join us in a special place where we all share together and love one another.” Thinking it was a great idea, he called his parents and told them he was dropping out of school to live in a commune. Six months later they received a letter from him: “Dear Mom and Dad, I know you were upset about my decision. But I want to tell you how it has changed my life. For the first time, I’m at peace. Here there’s no competing, no trying to get ahead of anyone. This way of life is so in harmony with my inner self, that in only six months I’ve become the number two disciple in the entire commune. And I think I can be number one by June.” Hello!

When competition leads to excellence it’s a good thing, but not when it leads to striving! One day Christ’s disciples started arguing about who would be the greatest in His kingdom. Jesus listened, then He picked up a towel and a basin of water and began to wash their feet. When He finished they were speechless, their hearts exposed, their attitudes corrected. “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who … made Himself of no reputation.” Bottom line: serve, don’t strive!

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY.

 

Never Argue with a Child

A little girl was talking with her teacher about whales.

The teacher said that it was physically impossible for a whale to swallow a human being. Although whales are very large mammals their throats are very small to prevent such a thing ever happening.

The little girl declared with conviction that Jonah was swallowed by a whale.

Irritated, the teacher reiterated that a whale could not swallow a human because it is physically impossible.

The little girl said, “When I get to heaven, I will ask Jonah!”

The teacher asked, “What if Jonah went to hell?”

The little girl quickly replied, “Then, you ask him!”



CLEANSING

OCTOBER 20, 2020

The blood … cleanses us from all sin. 1 JOHN l:7 NKJV

John writes: “If we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.” This Scripture gives us three ways to stay clean in a spiritually polluted world: (1) By walking in the light. That means striving to be so honest before God and man, you wouldn’t be ashamed to have anyone read in tomorrow morning’s newspaper, what you did today. (2) By being accountable. To grow strong in an area of weakness, sometimes you need someone mature enough to deserve your confidence, gracious enough to put up with your inconsistencies, and honest enough to confront you. Above all, they should be committed to youin love. (3) By dealing with your sin right away. The moment that brings the consciousness of sin, should lead to the confession of sin. At that point you must believe that “the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us

from all sin,” then get up and go on with God; don’t wallow in self-condemnation.

If there’s something rotten in your refrigerator you know it every time you open the door. You may not know exactly where it’s located, but the smell tells you it’s in there. Our lives are like that. If there’s something wrong within us, those we come into contact with are going to sense it, whether or not they know what it is or why it’s there. It gives off an odor that’s detectable. That’s why we must continually open ourselves to God and allow the Holy Spirit to come in, cleanse our hearts, and remove whatever’s hindering us in our walk with Him.

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY.

 

The itinerant odd-jobs man knocked on the kitchen door for his lunch.

“And did you notice that big pile of wood over there?” asked the lady.

“Yeah, I seen it.”

“Mind your grammar,” snapped the lady. “You should say you saw it.”

“Lady,” returned the man, “You saw me see it, but ain’t seen me saw it.”

 



LEARN TO MAKE BETTER DECISIONS

OCTOBER 19, 2020

A prudent man gives thought to his steps. PROVERBS 14:15 NIV

If you’re still making the same mistakes at fifty that you were at twenty, you need to ask God for wisdom. “The heart of the discerning acquires knowledge; the ears of the wise seek it out” (Pr 18:l5 NIV). What you are in the present, was determined by the decisions you made in the past. If you want to change your future, learn to make better decisions. Be wise; let these principles guide you:

(1) Never make permanent decisions based on temporary circumstances. If you do, you’ll regret it. (2) Don’t let your emo- tions blind you to reason. Pray, weigh things carefully and base your decisions on mature judgment. (3) Surround yourself with sharp people and draw on their gifts, without being intimidated by their expertise. (4) Take the time to consider all options. What looks good to you today, may not look so good tomorrow. (5) You can’t fight successfully on every front, so choose your battles carefully. Simply stated: some things are not worth fighting for. (6) Take time to get all the facts; conjecture leads to crisis. (7) Consider the consequences of each action. Ask yourself, “Am I ready to handle this right now?” (8) Make sure your expectations don’t exceed your potential and your resources. Be realistic. If you can’t count, don’t apply for a job in the finance office. If you can’t sing, don’t cut an album. Focus on what God gifted you to do. That’s where you’ll succeed. (9) Time is your most limited and valuable resource. Don’t waste it. (10) Allow yourself a 10 risk of being wrong, a 50 likelihood of betrayal, and a100 commitment to trust God, go forward and survive it all.

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY.

 

The pastor had just preached his farewell sermon and was greeting parishioners as they left the service.

One dear old lady shook his hand said “Oh, Pastor, we are really going to miss you. I know the next pastor will not be as good as you.”

The pastor was pleased at her remarks, but she continued, saying “I have been at this church for forty years. We have had six pastors, and each one has been worse than the one before him.”



PREPARED, PLANTED, PLACED, PRUNED, PROSPERED (4)

October 15

God planted a garden … there He put the man whom He had formed. GENESIS 2:8 NKJV

Bible says: “God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it” (Ge 2:15 NIV). Today God may be saying to you, “I’ve prepared you, placed you where you need to be, planted blessings in your life that are scheduled to come up at different times, but now you’ve got to work it.” Stop looking for gardens that are already pruned; you have to prune your own garden. You have to go through your own struggles and shed your own tears, Of in the case of Dave Thomas, founder of Wendy’s, wait on tables and work your way up. When people give you stuff they can take it from you.

When God gives it to you, it’s yours! But you’ve got to take care of it. You have to prune your own children; they’re not going to turn out right if you neglect them (See Pr 22:6). You have to prune your own relationships; “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly” (Ps 1:1 NK.JV). You

have to prune your own business. That means honoring God as your partner, allowing Him to use your business to promote His business.

When you walk with God He’ll protect and prosper you, even in hard times. But you’ve still got to “work it.” Ask any farmer; wheat left unattended will eventually seed itself to death. It must be cultivated. There’s nothing wrong with your life-except that you’re expecting God to do things He’s expecting you to do. Come on, get some shears and start pruning!

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY.

 

​I’ve disconnected my home alarm system and de-registered from the Neighborhood Watch.

I’ve got two Pakistani flags raised in the front yard, one at each corner, and the black flag of ISIS in the center.

The local police, sheriff, FBI, CIA, NSA, Homeland Security, Secret Service and other agencies are all watching the house 24/7. I’ve never felt safer and I am saving $49.95 a month.



PREPARED, PLANTED, PLACED, PRUNED, PROSPERED (3)

October 15

God planted a garden … there He put the man whom He had formed. GENESIS 2:8 NKJV

Notice, God placed the man in the garden, “eastward in Eden” (Ge 2:8 NKN). It’s not enough to be in the garden, you’ve got to be in the right location. You must pray, “Lord, place me in my garden.”

You learn a lot by raising children. You’re older and wiser, saying, “Don’t do that. Don’t go there.” But you can’t cut through the process. They have to stumble, because that’s how they learn to walk and find their way. Maybe you yourself worked at several jobs before figuring out what you were supposed to do. That’s because you weren’t “placed” yet. At some point, if you’re wise, you begin to pray, “Lord, don’t let me spend my life trying stuff, place me!”

You can be in the right place and not know it-because the place has been planted, not created! Dave Thomas, the founder of Wendy’s, was the child of an unwed mother. He recalls being ashamed of not having a decent pair of shoes to wear. Imagine: a school dropout, wearing shoes that don’t fit, working as a busboy waiting tables-but he has a six-billion-dollar business inside him. It doesn’t matter where you start, it just matters where you finish. You need to look in the mirror and announce, “There’s something in me that hasn’t come out yet. God, help me to be steadfast until You pull out of me what You planted in me.” Don’t let anyone convince you that you’re a failure because you don’t wear the right shoes, or have it all together right now. God has a place in mind for you. Just walk with Him and He’ll get you there.

Taken from THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR YOU TODAY

 

Miscellaneous jokes to lighten up your day:

One casket to another: “Is that you coffin?”

 

Barber: “Haven’t I shaved you before, Sir?”

Customer: “No, I got that scar in Vietnam.”

 

What do fish and guests have in common?

They both smell after three days.




 

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