Monday

A Letter To Friends!

http://static.flickr.com/9/11989792_e2a13bd00c_m.jpg

Dear Friends,

As for God, His way is perfect;
the Word of the Lord is
flawless.
He is a shield for all who take
refuge in Him.


Sincerely,

David

18P30






3 comments:

Ron Hutchcraft - AWWY said...

Where You Were Created to Be

I was speaking at a Bible conference, set right near the shore of a beautiful lake. I was responsible for speaking about 18 times in six days, so I was a pretty busy boy. But I did something that would make my wife Karen proud, even in spite of how busy I was. I took time to smell the flowers; well, at least to admire the flowers. I'm partially colorblind, but even I was struck by these rich purple flowers blooming all over this sprawling vine in the garden outside my window. The flowers seemed to be everywhere in this garden. I asked someone from the conference what I was looking at, and he told me it's a Vinca vine. He said they had transplanted that vine from a pot to the soil of this garden. And I was told a Vinca vine doesn't produce any flowers when it's in a pot - only when you plant it in the ground.

In the words of the man who had transplanted that vine, "It thrives only when it was where it was created to be." So do we.

And sadly, so many of us spend our whole life looking for, but missing, where we were created to be. And it is only the One who created you who can ultimately tell you where you were created to be. And He has in our word for today from the Word of God. In six little words, our Creator spells out for us the reason for our existence, the answer to life's most ultimate question, "Why am I here?" In Colossians 1:16, speaking of Jesus, God says, "All things were," and here are the six words, "created by Him and for Him."

So you were created by Jesus, you were created for Jesus, and you're going to have hole in your heart until you have Jesus. It could be you've been trying to fill that hole in your heart for a long time. But no relationship you've ever had has done it, no accomplishment, no experience, no religion. They can't. The hole in your heart is so big it can only be filled by the person who created you.

And the reason we can't find the meaning we've been looking for, and the peace, the lasting love, the reason is that we're away from the One we were made for. We're away from Him, not by His choice, but by ours. We were created for Him, but we've lived for ourselves. That's what "sin" is all about. Notice, the middle letter of sin, it's "I." And nothing is really working, nothing is really fulfilling because your sin - your running of your own life - has cut you off from the love you were created for.

That's why Jesus came. In Colossians 2:13-14, the Bible says, "God forgave us all our sins, having canceled ... what was against us; He took it away, nailing it to the cross." When you come in your heart to the cross where Jesus died for every wrong thing you've ever done; when you give yourself to the One who gave Himself for you, the sin-wall comes down and you begin for the first time in your life to be "where you were created to be."

If you've never yet experienced your own personal relationship with Jesus Christ, would you tell Him today, "Jesus, I turn from the running of my own life. I want to give my life to the One who gave His life for me. Jesus, beginning right here and right now, I am Yours." If that's what you want, then what I've put on our website, yoursforlife.net, may be is exactly what you need to help you understand this new commitment to Jesus Christ and to be sure that you belong to Him. A lot of people have found that kind of encouragement there, and I think you would too. It's yoursforlife.net. I'd encourage you to go there this very day - yoursforlife.net. Or I can send you the little booklet I have written called Yours For Life with that same information. Call us toll free and ask for it. It's 877-741-1200.

Your life really begins when you finally are where you were created to be: in the relationship you were made for, with the Person you were made by. And that relationship can begin for you today. You don't have to be outside His love one more day.

To find out how you can begin a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, please visit: yoursforlife.net or call 1-888-966-7325.

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Jill Carattini - rzim said...

Grieving Grace


The Gospel of Mark recollects a scene that makes me cringe every time I
hear it. I wish I could say it was the account of Judas's betrayal of
Christ, or the description of Jesus sweating blood in the Garden of
Gethsemane. But it is not.

In the first chapter of his testimony to the life of Jesus, Mark describes
a man with leprosy who comes to the feet of the unusual rabbi in great
need. On his knees, he begs with a statement of certainty, "If you are
willing, you can make me clean" (1:40). To this Jesus responds with an
act of healing that would indeed change everything in the life of man
pushed to the outskirts of a society, declared leprous in more ways than
one. Jesus heals him and then immediately tells the thankful man not to
tell anyone. The command is troubling to me, but so is the story that
follows.

Mark's Gospel, the shortest of the four, is largely concerned with getting
the message of Christ out without delay. He opens his account with a
single-sentence introduction, and his favorite word throughout the book is
a Greek word meaning "immediately" or "at once." The story of the leprous
man is no different.

In response to this man kneeling at Jesus's feet, Mark describes Jesus
immediately willing and sympathetic. "Filled with compassion, Jesus
reached out his hand and touched the man. 'I am willing,' he said. 'Be
clean!' Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cured" (1:41-42).
Mark conveys a compassionate savior who is near to us, reaching out with a
power that is relevant to our lives. In the Gospel of Mark, the divine
equation is not only apparent but spoken with urgency. God is near;
Christ has come; if you will seek him, you will find him.

But the passage continues. Jesus sends the healed man away "at once" and
"with a strong warning." "See that you don't tell this to anyone. But
go, show yourself to the priest and offer the sacrifices that Moses
commanded for your cleansing, as a testimony to them" (1:44). It is at
this point in the account that I find myself getting quite
self-righteously concerned. How difficult is it for a man who was just
healed to respond in gratitude by heeding Jesus's simple instructions? It
is a strange command, yes, but isn't this the least he can do?

Yet Mark reports a man eager to speak of the power he has seen. "Instead
he went out and began to talk freely, spreading the news." Adding, "As a
result, Jesus could no longer enter a town openly but stayed outside in
lonely places. Yet the people still came to him from everywhere" (1:45).

The chapter concludes with hope, but it is often no match for the
discomfort I feel. The story Mark tells hinges on the concepts of action
and reaction; the words "at once," "immediately," and "as a result" remind
us unpopularly that behavior has consequences. Of course, I know we are
not islands. I rejoice when the act of falling at Jesus's feet causes a
move of compassion in Christ and healing in the hearts of those who need.
But I cringe at the thought of my own wrong behavior causing consequences
to God. I don't want to think about my ability to grieve the Holy Spirit
with my anger, or my foolishness, or my disobedience. I don't want to
think about the times I have gotten in God's way, "fixing" the
catastrophes through which the Spirit may have been reaching someone,
turning away from Christ's simple instructions and forcing him to lonelier
places.

And yet, isn't this the reality of the Cross? I am free to act and react,
to make choices and affect others. But behavior has consequences; there is
always a cost. My behavior brought something into the garden that wasn't
meant to be there, something God chose to remove by bearing on the Cross
the consequence of my sin. There is a cost, but so there is also a
redeemer.

Again and again, the first chapter of Mark requires us to wrestle with the
one who has responded on our behalf. How do we respond to the
commands of the one who has healed us? How often has Jesus reached out
to us with compassion only to find his touch rebuffed in disobedience?
How do we grieve him with the choices we make? The words of the great
hymn offer a prayer worth remembering.

Oh, to grace how great a debtor
Daily I'm constrained to be!
Let they goodness like a fetter,
Bind my wand'ring heart to Thee
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love.
Here's my heart, Lord, take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.

God is near! Christ has come! There is at once before us a redeemer.
Let us respond with gratitude, with hope, and with obedience.

Jill Carattini is senior associate writer at Ravi Zacharias
International Ministries in Atlanta, Georgia.




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HIRAN PINEL said...

Bonito textp religioso, que dá reconforto a David, na sua solidão e ao mesmo tempo presença no mundo. Um abraço.

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