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Showing posts from 2016

The Good Shepherd (The Key to Finding Green Pastures)

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The Good Shepherd  The Key to Finding Green Pastures by S.E. Miller
As I study Psalm 23 and its context this week, I will share some amazing truths.. 

A life changing truth was found in verse two, which says, "You make me to lie down in green pastures"........."In The Way of The Shepherd", author Don Baker notes how Shepherds contend with barren hills in Israel. Baker says, dry barren hills are common in Israel and are due to a lack of rain during the months between May and October. 

The vegetation is dry and scorched by the sun. The lush green pastures the shepherd leads the sheep to is prepared by the shepherd! The Shepherd has to, clear the rocks, plow the soil, plant the seeds, irrigate the land and carefully tend the grasses to be certain the sheep have enough to eat." "The green pastures don’t just happen."
Imagine the difficult task of manually preparing such a soil to produce lush green pastures. Think about that for a moment! If Jesus is our shep…
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Setting Boundaries With Your Adult Children:  Five Ways God Wants You To Parent Your Adult Child  By Karla Downing
Are you wondering about setting boundaries with your adult children? Parenting your adult child sounds like an oxymoron. The two really shouldn't go together, but they often do. There is an epidemic of children eighteen years and older (even much older) that still require involvement from their parents in their lives and want support in the form of a place to live, money, training, and emotional energy. This requires a plan and an understanding of the ways adult children should be parented. Here are five ways God wants you to parent your adult child:
1. Everything you do needs to be with the goal of increasing independence rather than fostering dependence. It isn't easy for most eighteen year olds to move out on their own and be self-supporting as well as pay for educational or vocational training. Parental support can be a good thing, as long as it is working to…

8 Warning Signs Your Teen is Troubled

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Getting Help for Troubled Teens:  When and Where to Go By: Heather Peters
When your teenager starts to get out of hand you have to ask yourself some hard questions. The first step is to honestly evaluate how you think you're doing when communicating with your teen. Do you feel you are sharing valuable information and time? Or do you feel there is a communication gap and he's hiding something?
Look for these warning signs: Low self-esteem Out of touch with reality Sudden personality changes and mood swings Violent behavior Drop in grades and school performance Self destructive actions or language (suicide threats or extreme diet & exercise) Reclusive tendencies Debilitating fears
Any of those behaviors done on a frequent basis can indicate a problem. At this point you should seek outside assistance. Don't be too proud to ask for help.
If you feel your efforts aren't working (or aren't good enough) first enlist the assistance of your extended circle of friends and family. Get …

Love Laughter & Cookies a Jerry Seinfeld Moment

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My son, Jason, recently shared an old Jerry Seinfeld moment with me that made him laugh through the years, probably because he remembers when. According to Seinfeld, his mom never let him have a cookie at times when his heart yearned for just one.  He says he enjoys adulthood now, because if he wants a cookie he eats it, if he wants three, he eats three, if he wants eleven, no big deal! In a standup comedy routine, he shares that one day he called his mom just to tell her he had totally and intentionally, ruined his appetite.   He added, "So what if I ruin it, because as an adult, we understand even if you ruin an appetite with a cookie, there's another appetite coming right behind it.  There is no danger of running out of appetites!  I have millions of them.  I'll ruin them whenever I want!"  I laughed with Jason.  I was reminded of all the appetites I didn't let him ruin as a child.
Do we parents miss the boat sometimes, just because we have the authority to s…

What's Wrong With You This Time?" Children, Teenagers and Depression By Cate Russell-Cole

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For some of us, the haunting misery of depression is a familiar story. Up until two years ago, I spent the majority of my adolescence and adulthood clinically depressed and suicidal - but undiagnosed. When I look back, I see that my problems with depression started much earlier than adulthood or adolescence.For me, the stage was set early in childhood. I was a solitary child, (not by choice) and didn't have many friends or adults around, so no one noticed it was a problem, and nothing was done to help me. My parents abused me for being moody and difficult, and told me to "snap out of it, you've got nothing to be miserable about."
 As a child I had to deal with the loss of my birth mother, the challenges and differences of my disability, a over-protective and possessive mother, and dysfunction in my adoptive family. By the age of eight I was taken through a battery of tests to find out why I had stomach pains all the time. There was no physical cause, I was a lonely,…

The Room (Does God Keep Track of All Our Thoughts?)

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In that place between wakefulness and dreams, I found myself in the room. There were no distinguishing features save for the one wall covered with small index-card files. They were like the ones in libraries that list titles by author or subject in alphabetical order. But these files, which stretched from floor to ceiling and seemingly endlessly in either direction, had very different headings. As I drew near the wall of files, the first to catch my attention was one that read "Girls I Have Liked." I opened it and began flipping through the cards. I quickly shut it, shocked to realize that I recognized the names written on each one. And then without being told, I knew exactly where I was.

 This lifeless room with its small files was a crude catalog system for my life. Here were written the actions of my every moment, big and small, in a detail my memory couldn't match. A sense of wonder and curiosity, coupled with horror, stirred within me as I began randomly opening f…

Do You Believe?

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During a recent conversation, a co-worker said he doesn't believe the bible is true. The disturbing part about his comment is that he has never read or tried to read the bible. Why would an intelligent person say he does not believe the sayings of a book he has not read?
Another co-worker said he can't believe in a God he can't see but he believes in Alien's (although he's never seen one). This proves belief or unbelief in God reflects a condition of the heat and perhaps there is something more going on than not physically seeing God or reading the bible.
There are some who've read the bible but still don't believe it's God word or they used to believe and have stopped believing. Most of the time this comes from pride, or something happened in the person's life that the only way  he or she can accept the event or circumstance is to deny Gods existence or the validity of scripture. And sometimes people don't believe because the bible condemns …

The Test of Friendship

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Elbert Hubbard said, “A friend is someone who knows all about you and still loves you.”
God knows all about you and still loves you! Jesus  knew Peter would deny him three times. Not only did Peter deny him but he used four letter words to do so. 

Although Jesus knew Peter would deny Him, He still  chose him to be one of the twelve disciples. He not only chose him to be a disciple but made Peter the rock, upon which He built His church.
He also gave Peter the keys to the kingdom of heaven, saying  whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven (Matthew 16:13-23).

How’s that for friendship, remember a friend is someone who knows all about you and still loves you. 
In John 15:13, Jesus said, Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
God knows all about you, yet he still loves you and has committed himself to finish the good work he has started in you. 

He has declared His …

The Key to Answered Prayer!

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Have you been praying about something for a long time but have not received the answer? 

Take a look at what the Apostle John said about prayer. I hope you are ready for this, it will change your life forever! 

John said, "And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight." 1 John 3:22
Take a moment to meditate on the verse. Is your lifestyle pleasing to God? 

This is not a time for presumption and false modesty. You must be truthful with yourself. If you are living in sin your prayers will be hindered.

 Scripture says, "Behold the Lord's hand is not shortened, That it cannot save; Nor His ear heavy, That it cannot hear.  But your iniquities have separated you from your God; And your sins have hidden His face from you, So that He will not hear." Isaiah 59:1-2 (NKJV)

Scripture also says, If I regard iniquity in my heart, The Lord will not hear. Psalms 66:18 (NKJV)
Albert Barnes Notes on the Bi…

Cheer Up He's Calling You

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My daughter has a closet filled with name brand clothing  One day last Summer she decided to clean out her closet to make room for more. I asked her to give the unwanted clothes to a young lady in the neighborhood. I hadn't officially met her but had seen her a few times as she walked to the bus stop. I thought about how excited she would be to receive the clothes, some with tags still on them!

When I saw her, we were some distance apart, so I beckoned with my hands to get her attention. After I got her attention someone else started calling her. She simply looked at me then looked away and went inside her home. She ignored me, she did not say a word or motion to say "just a moment" she went inside, totally ignoring my call.
I was surprised by her response but quickly thought about our response to God's call. So often we ignore his beckoning because the world is calling us. Like the young lady we may miss out on special blessings because we choose to ignore Him. 

I…

The Power of Hope

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Living a life filled with hope will help us live by faith and not by fear. If we view situations and circumstances with fear we may try to solve problems by implementing our own plans and ideas.  This  creates a false peace and dependence on natural hope.
Natural hope is based upon what we perceive with our five senses.The ideas and plans developed with natural hope offers a temporary solution and makes matters worse.
Supernatural hope is based on trust in the one who possess the ability to change circumstances with the words He speaks. This is the One who defied natural law over and over again. Imagine a virgin having a baby! Virtually impossible,but God!
Imagine feeding 5,000 people with two fish and five loaves of bread! Virtually impossible,but God! Imagine being dead in a tomb for four days, wrapped in grave clothes and the Son of the living God’s calls your name, telling you to come forth. You hear his voice and begin to walk. Given a second chance you bow down in humble adorat…

What the Bible Says About Prosperity

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God the Reliable Promise Keeper:
Numbers 23:19 says, God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?
What is a Promise?
Yes, God will make good on his promises but what is a promise? Webster’s dictionary says, "a promise is one's pledge to another to do or not do something. It is made a right to expect or to claim the performance or forbearance of a specified act. That which is promised to engage, to do, give, make or obtain."
God’s promises are the ground for hope and expectation!
Important Promises Regarding Our Well-Being:
John 15:7  If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.
3 John 1:2  Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.
Philippians 4:19  But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ…
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Scripture says, the "Just" shall live by faith but what is faith? Harper's Bible Dictionary says faith is:
An act or state of acknowledging the existence and power of a supreme being and the reality of a divine order.The acceptance as real or true, that which is not supported by evidence of the senses or by rational proofs. An affirmative response of the will of God as revealed, especially by Jesus Christ. It is thus a compound of belief, trust, and an attitude of mind, will, or spirit.
What Jesus revealed about faith:

Matthew 9:27-29   When Jesus departed from there, two blind men followed Him, crying out and saying, "Son of David, have mercy on us!" And when He had come into the house, the blind men came to Him. And Jesus said to them, "Do you believe that I am able to do this?" They said to Him, "Yes, Lord." Then He touched their eyes, saying, "According to your faith let it be to you."
Notice in verse 27 the men were following Jesu…

It's Time to Think Yourself Happy!

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In Acts 26:2 we see the Apostle Paul experiencing very trying circumstance but we discover by his own words he is not discouraged but actually finds himself to be quite happy. 
What's the key to such an attitude? The key is to keep your eyes fixed on the good things in your life. Unfortunately, the good things aren't always visible! Sometimes the good things in life are spiritual and can only be seen with spiritual glasses (the word of God).
Paul had his eyes fixed on Jesus and the benefits of Salvation. He realized his sins were many and he was happy to have them forgiven. Because Jesus died for the sins of the whole world, he had avoided the pit of hell and was granted access into God's kingdom. 
Like Paul we too can be happy if we keep our eyes on the benefits of salvation. This will keep us from worrying while God is working on our problems!

We can be happy our sins are forgiven.

Psalms 32:1-2 (NKJV)Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, Whose sin is covered.

W…

Are You Praying Properly?

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