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Post  Admin on Wed 14 May 2014, 8:32 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Feelings  

"The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience,
kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and
self-control."1

Imagine living in a world without emotions. It would be
like living in a world without color--a world without
blue skies, white fluffy clouds, red roses, or
beautiful rainbows and sunsets. Everything would be a
dull monotonous gray. Life would be deadly dull and
boring--as it is when emotions are repressed.

Like many others, especially men, I grew up being
taught that feelings weren't important and that you
couldn't trust them."

Thank God it isn't so. Feelings are God-given. They are
an inner monitor letting us know what is going on
inside of us. The more we are in touch with our true
emotions, the more they can inform us when our life is
out of harmony and we need an emotional tune up,
caution us of impending danger, warn us when we are
around unsafe people, affirm us when we are with safe
people, guide us when we have major decisions to make,
keep us in tune with God's leading, and assure us when
our life is in harmony with others and God. Admittedly,
if we don't understand them, they can confuse us and
get us tied in knots!

Feelings are a gift from God. To deny and repress them
we now know can be disastrous, physically, emotionally
and spiritually. The first three fruits of God's
Spirit--love, joy, and peace--are emotions. Thus, if
our emotion of love is repressed, how can God’s love
flow through us? It can't.

Yes, it may take a while but we can learn to trust our
feelings. What we can't always trust is how to
interpret them correctly. It can be like learning a new
language, but a language well worth learning, without
which there can be no true intimacy either with my
loved ones or with God.

Another way of describing emotions could be E-Motions
or Energy in Motion! One thing is sure. Without
emotions we are characteristically bored with life and
lose our energy and our drive. Thank God for emotions.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, as you desire truth in the
innermost being,2 please deliver me from the 'sin of
denying my true emotions,' help me to get in touch with
my true feelings and inner self, and learn how to
understand them and express them creatively when such
is needed. Thank You for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Galatians 5:22 (NIV).
2. Psalm 51:6.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
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  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * *
 
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
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  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Tue 13 May 2014, 6:27 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Being Available  

"And he [Abraham's servant] said, 'Blessed be the LORD
God of my master Abraham, who has not left destitute my
master of his mercy and his truth: I being in the way,
the LORD led me to the house of my master's
brethren.'"1

According to Joe Sandven in Church Worship, "At the
time the Titanic hit an iceberg in the North Atlantic,
a ship by the name of the Californian was only ten
miles away. Unfortunately, the Californian had tuned
out and had turned off its ship's radio.

"The Carpathia was a greater distance away, but its
radio was on. This ship heard the distress signal of
the Titanic and came to the rescue as quickly as
possible, but many lives were lost by the time she
arrived. Once she arrived she was able to save hundreds
of lives. But it was the Californian that could have
been instrumental in saving many, many more lives had
she only been listening."

When it comes to serving God, personal experience has
taught me that if I am always "tuned in and on the
ready" and available, God always opens doors of
opportunity for service.  

The key is to keep our "spiritual listening" turned on
at all times and be available for God to use us. As
another has said, "The greatest ability is
availability."

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to live in
tune with You and in obedience to Your Word and always
be available to do Your bidding. Give me a loving
heart, a listening ear, and a willing attitude so that
I will always be obedient to Your leading. Thank You
for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in
Jesus's name, amen."

1. Genesis 24:27 (KJV).

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 


  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Mon 12 May 2014, 2:22 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

The Music of Your Life  

"Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a
bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives
light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let
your light shine before men, that they may see your
good deeds and praise your Father in heaven."1 

According to an article in Turning Point Daily
Devotional, "Fritz Kreisler (1875-1962), the
world-famous violinist, earned a fortune with his
concerts and compositions, but he generously gave most
of it away. So, when he discovered an exquisite violin
on one of his trips, he wasn't able to buy it. Later,
having raised enough money to meet the asking price, he
returned to the seller, hoping to purchase that
beautiful instrument.

"But to his great dismay, it had been sold to a
collector. Kreisler made his way to the new owner's
home and offered to buy the violin. The collector said
it had become his prized possession, and he would not
sell it. "Keenly disappointed, Kreisler was about to
leave when he had an idea. 'Could I play the instrument
once more before it is consigned to silence?' he asked.
Permission was granted, and the great virtuoso filled
the room with such heart-moving music that the
collector's emotions were deeply stirred. 'I have no
right to keep that to myself,' he exclaimed. 'It's
yours, Mr. Kreisler. Take it into the world, and let
people hear it.'

"We have a message to share. Our heavenly Father
created us as exquisite instruments, and the beautiful
music we are to make is the Good News of salvation
through faith in Jesus Christ. We were made to be
played."2

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to let my
light so shine that it will be as 'music to another's
ears,' and draw them to You, the 'Master Musician par
excellence.' Thank You for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Matthew 5:15-16 (NIV).
2. Turning Point Daily Devotional (7-26-06). Cited on
Preaching Now http://www.preaching.com.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  
  Daily Encounter is published at no charge by 
  ACTS International, a non-profit organization, 
  and made possible through the donations of 
  interested friends. Donations can be sent at: 
  http://www.actscom.com

    Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Fri 09 May 2014, 8:34 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Honor Your Mother  Wishing all Mothers a very Happy Mother’s Day!

“Honor you father and your mother, so that you may
livelong in the land the LORD your God is giving you."1

“An aged, white-haired mother sat with a smile on her
face, waiting for herfamous son, Dwight Eisenhower, to
arrive. Someone said to her, ‘You must bevery proud of
your great and illustrious son.’ Upon which she asked,
‘Whichson?’ Each one was equally great to that noble
mother.

“Said Dwight Eisenhower, ‘My sainted mother taught me
adevotion to God and a love of country which have ever
sustained me in my manylonely and bitter moments of
decision in distant and hostile lands. To her, Iyield a
son’s reverent thanks.2

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You for motherswho
truly love their sons and their daughters and bring
them up in the ways ofthe Lord. And today I pray for
all motherless and fatherless children in
theworld--please grant that they will be loved by
someone and that, above all,they will find Your gift of
eternal love and salvation. Thank You for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name,amen."

1. Exodus 20:12 (NIV).
2. Paul Lee Tan, Encyclopedia of 7700Illustrations, p.
849. ©️ 1979, Paul Lee Tan. Assurance Publishers,
Rockville, Maryland20851.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  
  Daily Encounter is published at no charge by 
  ACTS International, a non-profit organization, 
  and made possible through the donations of 
  interested friends. Donations can be sent at: 
  http://www.actscom.com  
  Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Thu 08 May 2014, 8:25 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

The Blame-Game Virus  

“Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD."1 

Much of our society today is being infected by a virus.
No, I don’t mean a computer or biological virus, but a
moral virus that could, if not arrested, spread like a
plague and eventually infect, or at least seriously
affect, our entire society. It’s the irresponsible
“blame-game" virus that can end up over time (even
though ever so slowly) seriously weaken what was once a
healthy, virile people. When a nation becomes morally
weakened from within, it becomes vulnerable to opposing
forces from without. Today, I believe that we in
America and the West are in far greater danger of being
horrifically attacked than we ever were during World
Wars I and II and in the days of the Cold War with
Communism.

Too many business leaders irresponsibly "cook" their
company books out of selfish interest and reap havoc in
thousands of other people’s lives. Too many employees
refuse to accept responsibility for doing the best job
they can possibly do. Failing people often blame racial
prejudice for their lack of advancement. Irresponsible
parents blame teachers when they fail their children
for cheating on exams. And as Michael Josephson of
Character Counts reports, in a survey of some 36,000
high school students a high percentage of students
admit to cheating and lying and at the same time claim
to be highly ethical.2 These kids who already know how
to play the blame-game will be the business and
political leaders of tomorrow. Politicians blame the
opposition party, divorced people blame their former
spouse--and so on ad infinitum--all without accepting
personal responsibility for their own failures.

Whether it is at a national or an individual level,
when we fail to accept personal responsibility for our
actions, we inevitably fall into the blame-game trap.
As long as we do this, we will never resolve our
personal or national problems.

Individually, we need to accept personal responsibility
for every aspect of our life. At the local and national
level, we need to vote for leaders whom we know will
act responsibly and put the genuine needs of their
constituents first instead of bowing to personal
interest groups in order to further their own political
careers.

We live in perhaps the most developed, highly educated,
and technically advanced society ever. But what kind of
defense are super powered high speed jet fighters
against suicide bombers and dirty bombs? Our brilliant
technology will not save us. Remember that in his day
Hitler was the leader of one of the most educated,
intelligent, and enlightened societies up to that point
in history. The reality is that if we abandon our moral
moorings and lose our moral compass, we will be (and
perhaps are already) on a course heading towards
national disaster.  

May we never forget that “Blessed is the nation whose
God is the LORD."

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please grant in Your
loving mercy that You will send a great spiritual
awakening to our nation before we are struck again with
another “nine eleven" wake-up call (that so soon we
forgot), and as a nation turn our hearts back to You.
Please let Your work begin in me. Thank You for hearing
and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name,
amen."

1. Psalm 33:12.
2. Character Counts,
http://www.josephsoninstitute.org/reportcard/

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 

  Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Wed 07 May 2014, 4:52 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Seeing the Invisible  

“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies
proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour
forth speech; night after night they display knowledge.
There is no speech or language where their voice is not
heard."1


In A Slice of Infinity Betsy Childs writes, “Are you
sitting down? If so, you may be under the impression
that you are also sitting still, but the fact is that
you are in rapid motion. I'm referring to the earth's
rotation; in the course of a day, our planet rotates at
the brisk rate of 1000 miles per hour at the equator.
Then there's the earth's orbital rate of rotation; we
have to travel roughly 67,000 miles an hour to make it
all the way around the sun in a year. Are you feeling
any motion sickness yet?

“I could hardly be more stationary than I am right now
as I sit here before my computer. But in spite of the
fact that I don't feel like I'm moving, I know that I
am. I see the effects every day in the sun's rising and
setting."2

I’ve never seen electricity but I know it exists
because of its numerous effects seen every day in
lighting, heating, cooling, running all sorts of
equipment--and in “ten thousand" other uses.

I don’t know any educated person who doesn’t believe in
the rotation of the earth or in electricity even though
we can’t see either of these--or a thousand other
things that affect our daily life that we can’t see
with the naked eye. But many say they don’t believe in
God because they haven’t seen him or they cannot feel
his presence.

However, if we want to believe in God, we will see
evidence of his existence everywhere we look. As God’s
Word says, “The heavens declare the glory of God." And
as Helen Keller said, “There are none so blind as those
who refuse to see."

Basically, we all pretty much see what we want to see,
hear what we want to hear, remember what we want to
remember, and believe in what we want to believe in. To
believe or not to believe in God is perhaps more often
than not a moral choice. If we choose to believe in
God, we know we are morally responsible. If we choose
not to believe in God, we delude ourselves into
thinking we can live as we please without any
consequences.

However, our disbelief in God doesn’t alter His reality
any more than refusing to believe in electricity and
grabbing hold of a high-voltage electric wire. The end
result of both of these is death--one immediate
physical death, the other spiritual death which, at the
end of this life, is eternal separation from God, the
author of all love and life. We are all given a choice
about God either to believe or not to believe. And as
Joshua said to the ancient Israelites long ago, “Choose
you this day whom you will serve."3 

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, please open the eyes of my
understanding so that I will see the reality of Your
existence and genuinely choose to believe in and serve
You. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully in Jesus’s name, amen."

1. Psalm 19:1-3 (NIV).
2. A Slice of Infinity, “The Invisible Pull" by Betsy
Childs. ©️ 2006 Ravi Zacharias International Ministries.
All Rights Reserved. http://www.rzim.org/index.php
3. Joshua 24:15.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * *
  Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Tue 06 May 2014, 8:27 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

To Be or Not to Be  

"’Come, follow me,’ Jesus said."1

Like millions of others I happened to be born into a
very ordinary family that happened to be quite
dysfunctional. Nevertheless, there will always be one
thing that I will be eternally grateful for and that is
that my parents took me to Sunday School and church
where I heard the Christian message. As a 15-year-old
teenager I vividly recall responding to a challenge to
serve God with my life.

Back then I could never have imagined in “a million
years" where that commitment was going to lead me--to
where I would be and what I would be doing today (and I
couldn’t imagine being more thankful). The reality is
that the choices and decisions we make today can and do
affect us for the rest of our lives and for all
eternity.

Regardless of one's age, the important thing is to
choose wisely how we are going to live and for what
purpose because the choices we make today will affect
us, not only for the rest of this life, but for all
eternity. In the words of Roy L. Sharpe:

    A Bag of Tools

    Isn't it strange
    That princes and kings,
    And clowns that caper
    In sawdust rings,
    And common people
    Like you and me
    Are builders for eternity?

    Each is given a bag of tools,
    A shapeless mass,
    A book of rules;
    And each must make -
    Ere life has flown -
    A stumbling block
    Or a stepping stone.

Each of us has been given “a bag of tools" and it’s up
to each of us how we use them; that is, how we invest
the one life we have been entrusted with. To be or not
to be all that God has envisioned for us to be is the
choice we are all called on to make.

Suggested prayer: "Dear Jesus God, my choice today
(with Your help) is to love, serve, trust, obey, and
follow You all the days of my life. And, acknowledging
my own weaknesses, in the words of the hymn writer, ‘O
to grace how great a debtor / Daily I’m constrained to
be! / Let Thy  goodness like a fetter / Bind my
wandering heart to thee / Prone to wander, Lord, I feel
it / Prone to leave the God I love / Here’s my heart, O
take and seal it / Seal it for Thy courts above.’2
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Matthew 4:19. (See also Matthew 8:22; 9:9; 10:38;
16:24; and 19:21).
2. Robert Robinson (1735-1790).

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 

  
  Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International.  
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
  ACTS International.
Admin
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Post  Admin on Mon 05 May 2014, 6:47 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Why Pharisees Were Pharisaical  

“The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a
woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before
the group and [piously] said to Jesus, ‘Teacher, this
woman was caught in the act of adultery. In the Law
Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you
say?’"1

The Pharisees or religious leaders of Jesus day were
notorious for their rigid, legalistic, and
authoritarian demeanor and attitude. Many of their
rules were man-made and kept people in hopeless
bondage. In essence they loved their rules more than
they loved people and used them as a means to control
people. In the case where they brought the woman caught
in adultery to Jesus, they were using her and their
incredibly devious use of rules in an attempt to catch
Jesus so they could have him condemned and killed
because they were intensely jealous and extremely
critical of him. Jesus, of course, brilliantly caught
them in their own trap and exposed them for what they
truly were by agreeing with them and saying, “[However]
let the one who has never sinned be the one to cast the
first stone!" The result? One by one they vanished from
the scene.

So why were the Pharisees so legalistic and rigid? What
made them this way? People who are theologically or
religiously rigid are like this because they are
emotionally rigid. Their pious religiosity has nothing
to do with spirituality. In fact it is a defense
against genuine spiritually. They are very much into
denial about their true emotions and inner self. They
are afraid of knowing themselves and for being known
for whom they truly are, so they hide their true self
behind an outer mask of super-spirituality, outwardly
pretending to be something they are not on the inside.
When they do this long enough, they end up unhappily
believing that their outer mask is their real self.
Consequently, on the inside they die a little every day
as an authentic and loving person.

Furthermore, the more rigid, legalistic, authoritarian
and self-righteous they are, the more frightened and
insecure they are about facing their own reality. They
are living a lie and are phony to the core. This is why
Jesus condemned them. This is true not only of the
religious Pharisees of Christ’s day but also true of
rigid, legalistic, and authoritarian people today--be
they religious or otherwise. They are blind leaders of
the blind. Avoid them like the plague. If you follow
their leadership you, too, will die a little every day
as an authentic and loving person.

Only honest, genuine, and real people have real
authority. Like Jesus, they speak with authority, but
are never authoritarian.

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, please confront me with my
reality and in so doing help me to become genuine and
authentic and never hide behind any kind of false mask.
I ask for this so that my manner of life and witness
for You will have authority, and so I will readily be
able to discern any phony leader be he/she religious or
otherwise. Thank You for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus’s name, amen."

1. John 8:3-5 (NIV).

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Post  Admin on Fri 02 May 2014, 7:01 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Hot Potato  

"For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is
eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."1

A teenager asked me the question: "Do you think
homosexuality should be legalized?"

My opinion wasn’t and still isn’t important. I shared
what I believed God had to say, and that is that
homosexuality is an unnatural condition.2 Lest we are
tempted to be judgmental, we need to realize that God’s
Word also lists it with other sins which are all
destructive to human personality, and as such, are
opposed by God. True, God forgives all who confess
their sins, but indicates that those who willfully
practice sexual immorality, idolatry, adultery, male
prostitution, homosexuality, stealing, greed,
drunkenness, slandering, and swindling will not inherit
the kingdom of God.3 If God is opposed to all of these
damaging behaviors, can we justly legalize any one of
them? Many heterosexuals are “driven" to sex outside of
marriage but this is not God’s plan and is also sin.
Others are “driven" to acts of pedophilia; dare we
justify this too because “they can’t help it"?

Actually, there are often deep psychological causes
behind many external "acts of sin." The causes often
have their roots in the past and need to be faced and
resolved if a person is to find wholeness--both
emotional and spiritual.

If we justify and legalize any act of sin, we harm the
person involved much more than we ever help him/her. It
gives an excuse not to face one’s issues and resolve
their problem.

As Christians we are to accept and love the sinner and
not judge or condemn him or her (because we are all
sinners and are probably all guilty of at least greed,
gossip, or slandering which are listed with the sin of
homosexuality). But this doesn't mean that we accept or
approve of sinful behavior. Very often it has been a
lack of love that has driven people into acts of
sin--especially sexual sins. Only love, Christ's
unconditional love through us, will ever draw these
people out again.*

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, help me to be honest about
my own sins and never be the ‘first one to cast a
stone’ at other sinners. Also, help me to love all
sinners even though I don't approve of their behavior.
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully in Jesus's name."

*For further information and help regarding
homosexuality be sure to read Chuck Colson’s BreakPoint
article, “When a Dog Says ‘Moo’" at
http://tinyurl.com/yedn67.

1. Romans 6:23 (NIV).
2. Romans 1:27.
3. 1 Corinthians 6:9-11.

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  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
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  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
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Post  Admin on Thu 01 May 2014, 8:31 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Man Overboard  

In speaking of Himself, Jesus said, “For the Son of Man
has come to seek and to save that which was lost."1
“And then He [Jesus] told them, ‘You are to go into all
the world and preach the Good News to everyone,
everywhere."2 

“One day Hudson Taylor [the famed missionary], was
traveling on a Chinese junk from Shanghai to Ningpo. He
had been witnessing to a man named Peter who rejected
the gospel but was under deep conviction. In the course
of events, Peter fell overboard, but no one made any
effort to save him. 

Taylor sprang to the mast, let down the sail, and
jumped overboard in hopes of finding his friend. But no
one on board joined Taylor in his frantic search.
Taylor saw a fishing boat nearby and yelled to them to
help, but they wouldn't do it without money. Finally,
after bartering for every penny that Taylor had, the
fishermen stopped their fishing and began to look for
Peter. In less than a minute of dragging their net,
they found him, but it was too late. They were too busy
fishing to care about saving a drowning man. 

“We can easily condemn the selfish indifference of
those fishermen, but by indicting them, we may condemn
ourselves. Are we too busy with our jobs and other
activities to take the time to rescue those who are
perishing without Christ?"3 

If we are true followers of Jesus Christ, we will be
concerned about reaching the lost for Christ with His
message of forgiveness and salvation. Jesus came to
seek and to save lost souls and He commissioned His
followers to do likewise. If we are not doing likewise,
we are not following Jesus. As another has said, "Jesus
last command to His followers needs to be our first
priority."

Suggested Prayer: “Dear God, thank You that Jesus, Your
Son, came to die to pay the penalty for all my sins,
and to seek and save me. I am available, please make me
usable and use me to be an effective witness for Jesus
today and every day for the rest of my life. Thank You
for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in
Jesus’s name, amen."

For simple, attractive, and effective tools to be a
witness for Jesus Christ please prayerfully consider
becoming a People Power for Jesus Partner. There is no
charge. To see how go to:
http://www.actsweb.org/people_power02.php 

1. Luke 19:10 (NKJV).
2. Mark 16:15 (TLB).
3. Kenneth Cole, “The Crucial Message." 

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
 
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Post  Admin on Thu 01 May 2014, 9:52 am

Today's Daily Encounter
When My Child Was Lost  

Jesus said, "You are to go into all the world and
preach the Good News to everyone, everywhere."1

Dr. Leighton Ford tells the story of when his young
daughter got lost years ago.

"I was minding the children while my wife was shopping.
Debbie Jean had returned from school and was playing
with her four-year-old brother in the back yard. When I
called them to come in, Debbie Jean was missing.

"I walked up and down the street calling her
name--fearing the silence.

"Later (after she was found) I reflected on the
incident. During the nearly two hours that Debbie Jean
was missing, nothing else mattered. In my study were
books to be read, letters to be answered, articles to
be written, planning to be done--but it was all
forgotten. I could think of only one thing: my little
girl was lost.

"I had only one prayer and I prayed it a thousand
times: 'O God, help me to find her.'

"'How often,' I ask myself, had I felt that same
terrible urgency about people who were lost from God?"

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, give me a passion for
those who are lost without Jesus. Please use me today
and every day to be as Jesus to someone who needs the
Savior and grant that they, seeing Jesus in me, will
want You for themselves. Thank You for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name,
amen."

NOTE: Learn how to be a missionary right from your own
home, and have a vital part in worldwide gospel
outreach by becoming an ACTS People Power for Jesus
Partner. It’s very simple, non-threatening, and without
cost. See how at:
http://www.actsweb.org/people_power_invite.php.

1. Mark 16:15 (TLB).

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  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
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  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
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Post  Admin on Tue 29 Apr 2014, 8:28 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

What Is That in Your Hand?  

“Then Moses answered and said, ‘But suppose they will
not believe me or listen to my voice; suppose they say,
“The LORD has not appeared to you."’ So the LORD said
to him, ‘What is that in your hand?’ And he said, ‘A
rod.’"1

I have read how a boy who loved to listen to music was
bitterly disappointed because he could neither play nor
sing. But a kindly gentleman encouraged him with these
words: "There are many ways of making music. What
matters is the song in your heart." That boy--Antonio
Stradivarius--took the man at his word and became the
world's greatest violin maker.

I also read about “a well-dressed European woman on
safari in Africa. The group stopped briefly at a
hospital for lepers. The heat was intense, the flies
buzzing. She noticed a nurse bending down in the dirt,
tending to the pus-filled sores of a leper.

“With disdain the woman remarked, ‘Why, I wouldn't do
that for all the money in the world!"

“The nurse quietly replied, ‘Neither would I.’"2

As God asked Moses (who was feeling very inadequate)
when he was calling him to lead the ancient Israelites
out of slavery in Egypt, he asks the same question to
you and me today, “What is that in your hand?" That is,
what are your abilities and talents and how are you
using these for the highest purpose? Are they to enrich
your own life for your own ends or to help enrich the
lives of others?

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, help me to find the most
effective way to use my God-given talents and abilities
to serve You by serving others in a way that will bring
the most glory to Your name. Thank You for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’s name, amen."

1. Exodus 4:1-2 (NKJV).
2. Donald L. Deffner, Seasonal Illustrations, p. 130.

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Post  Admin on Mon 28 Apr 2014, 7:57 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

The Longing for Belonging  

“And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some
people do, but encourage one another, especially now
that the day of his return is drawing near."1

There is deep within the heart and soul of every one of
us a need and longing to belong. The one who has no
sense of belonging and being connected in relationship
to at least one meaningful companion or friend, is more
likely than not to become physically ill, depressed, a
patient in a mental institution, or even suicidal. It
may not be the most desirable but we can live without
being in a romantic relationship, but we cannot live
healthily without having at least one (and preferably
more) healthy relationships.

Not belonging, not feeling loved and accepted and/or
being rejected can be one of life’s most painful
experiences. Ralph Keyes in his book Is There Life
after High School? writes that Mia Farrow has never
forgotten the time every girl but Mia was asked to
dance. Nor did Charles Schulz of “Peanuts" cartoon fame
ever forget that the yearbook staff rejected his every
cartoon. Movie actress Ali McGraw confesses she doesn’t
forget the fact that she never had one date in all of
high school. Henry Kissinger is best remembered by his
classmates as the kid nobody wanted to eat lunch with
at school."2And perhaps many of us can remember when
kids were choosing teams and we were the last one to be
chosen. It was pretty devastating.

As I’ve said many times, if Jesus, when on earth,
needed close friendly relationships, how much more do
we need them? Speaking personally, one of the best
places I have found to find healthy connections and
friendships is in a healthy, non-judgmental,
non-legalistic, loving, God-fearing (respecting)
church.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You that you have
created me for relationships. Please help me first to
be a good friend and then find a few loving
relationships to get legitimate needs met in healthy
ways. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Hebrews 10:25 (NLT).
2. Donald B. Strobe, Collected Words. Cited on
www.Sermons.com.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
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  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
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  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
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Post  Admin on Fri 25 Apr 2014, 8:37 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Never Give Up  

"It is God himself, in his mercy, who has given us this
wonderful work [of telling his Good News to others],
and so we never give up."1

A number of years ago I read the following story about
Sir Winston Churchill in Our Daily Bread. Churchill
attended grade school at Harrow where he was in the
lower third of his class and showed no particular
potential. After he graduated he went on to university
and eventually became famous.

On October 29, 1941, Prime Minister Winston Churchill
went back to Harrow to hear the traditional songs he
had sung there when a student and to address the
student body. He was introduced as one of the greatest
orators of all time. The students were told to take
plenty of notes.

In those sobering days of World War II included in his
address Sir Winston encouraged the boys to:

"Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never,
never--in nothing, greator small, large or petty--never
give in, except to convictions of honor and good sense.
Never yield to force. Never yield to the apparently
overwhelming might of the enemy."2
I'm certain that none of those students ever forgot
that advice.

And that is God's advice and word to us. If we
interpreted God's message to the Hebrew Christians
fully, it would be: "God said, 'I will never, never,
never, never, never [five times over] leave you or
forsake you" or "I will never, not ever, not ever,
leave you or forsake you." (Hebrews 13:5). This is the
greatest reason why we, too, must never give up.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You for the
wonderful assurance that You will never ever leave me
or forsake me. Help me to never ever leave or forsake
You ... not ever. Gratefully in Jesus's name."

1. 2 Corinthians 4:1 (TLB).
2. Click HERE for the complete text of Sir Winston's
address. 

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  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
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Post  Admin on Thu 24 Apr 2014, 2:04 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Faithfulness  

“He [God] who calls you is faithful, who also will do
it."1

“When Robert Moffat, Scottish missionary to Africa,
came back to recruit helpers in his homeland, he was
greeted by the fury of a very cold British winter.
Arriving at the church where he was to speak, he noted
that only a small group had braved the elements to hear
his appeal.

“Although no one responded to Moffat's call for
volunteers for mission service in Africa, the challenge
thrilled a young boy who had come to work the bellows
of the organ. Deciding that he would follow in the
footsteps of this pioneer missionary, he went on to
school, obtained a degree in medicine, married Moffat's
daughter, Mary, and spent the rest of his life
ministering to the unreached tribes of Africa. His
name: David Livingstone!"2

Whatever and whenever we do “simple acts of kindness
and obedience" in Jesus’ name, we may never know until
we get to heaven who and how many people will have been
reached and affected for all eternity.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, I ask not for fame or
fortune, but that every day for the rest of my life You
will help and use me to commit simple acts of kindness
in Your name in some way to every life I touch. Thank
You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in
Jesus's name, amen."

1. 1 Thessalonians 5:24 (NKJV).
2. Doug Batchelor in Broken Chains (Pacific Press
2004). Cited on WITandWISDOM by Richard Wimer,
www.witandwisdom.org

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  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
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  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
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Post  Admin on Wed 23 Apr 2014, 3:28 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
God's Judgment Throne  

“It is appointed for men to die once, but after this
the judgment."1 

According to God’s Word, the Bible, after death, either
at the judgment seat of Christ or at the Great White
judgment throne of God, every one of us will be
required to give an account to God regarding our life
here on earth.

Those who believe in God and have accepted Jesus as
their Lord and Savior have their names written in God’s
book of life. However, they will still appear before
the judgment seat of Christ--not to be judged for their
sins, because Jesus paid that penalty for them when he
died on the cross--but to be judged on the basis of how
they served God here on earth and be rewarded
accordingly. As God’s Words says, “For we must all
appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each
one may receive what is due him for the things done
while in the body, whether good or bad."2

On the other hand, those who have not chosen to believe
in God or accept Jesus Christ as their Savior--whose
names are not written in God’s book of life--will
appear before God, the Judge of all the earth at the
Great White Judgment throne of God. Because they never
accepted Jesus’ sacrifice for their sins nor asked God
for forgiveness, they will have to pay the penalty for
their own sins, which is eternal death and separation
from God, the author of all love and life, in the place
the Bible calls Hell or the lake of fire--wherever and
whatever that may be.

As God’s Word says, “Each person was judged according
to what he had done. Then death and Hades were thrown
into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second
death. If anyone's name was not found written in the
book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire."3

The critical issue is: have you confessed your
sinfulness to God, and do you believe that Jesus died
on the cross in your place to pay the penalty for your
sins and, in so doing, have you accepted Jesus as your
Lord and Savior? If not, you will be required in the
end to pay the penalty for your sins yourself.

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, thank You for giving Your
Son, Jesus Christ, to pay the penalty for all my sins.
I do believe in You and confess my sinfulness and ask
for Your forgiveness. Help me always to live for you.
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully in Jesus’s name, amen."

Note: If you prayed this simple prayer and truly meant
it, please let us know by going to
http://tinyurl.com/pgntm, or for further help be sure
to read, “To Find and Know God ... without having to be
religious" at: http://tinyurl.com/8glq9.

1. Hebrews 9:27 (NKJV).
2. 2 Corinthians 5:10 (NIV).
3. Revelation 20:13-15 (NIV).

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  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
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Post  Admin on Tue 22 Apr 2014, 3:00 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

The Choices We Make Make Us  

"But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then
choose for yourselves thisday whom you will serve....
But as for me [Joshua] and my household, we willserve
the LORD."1

“His lord said to him, 'Well done good and faithful
servant; you have been faithfulover a few things, I
will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the
joyof your lord.'"2

As a teen I was fortunate to be a member of a small,
butvery active church. In our youth group we were very
much challenged to serveGod with our life. Almost half
of our group ended up in full-time Christianministry.
In one family the oldest brother chose to become a
missionary andfaithfully served God until he retired;
of his two sisters, one dropped out ofchurch but did
reasonably well in the business world; the other sister
not onlydropped out of church, but became involved in
an illicit relationship whichended in disaster. She
started drinking heavily, and sadly, today in
herretirement years has become an alcoholic having made
shipwreck of her life.

Three friends--three different choices! One will
certainlygo to a positive heavenly reward. I’m not sure
how the other two will fare.

The reality is that at the end of life’s journey every
person will be required to give an account of hisor her
life to either Jesus Christ or God. For the Christian
the Bible says,“For we must all appear before the
judgment seat of Christ, that each one mayreceive the
things done in the body, according to what he has done,
whethergood or bad."3 Not so good for the
non-Christian. We will addresstheir plight in
tomorrow’s Daily Encounter.

So, if we want to receive a good report when we give
apersonal account to the Lord, we need to make that our
choice here and now, andto make any changes that are
necessary, for we become the sum total of all
thechoices we have made in the past--and will become
the sum total of these and allthe choices we make in
the future. As Brian Tracy reminds us: “It’s choice,
notchance that determines our destiny."

No matter what our past, the good news is that we
canchoose right now to start making productive choices,
and do so at the beginningof every day so these choices
will determine our ultimate destiny.

Let us remember too, that, asWinston Churchill said,
“We make a living by what we get. We make a life bywhat
we give." Albert Schweitzer agrees. He said, “I don’t
know what yourdestiny will be, but one thing I do know:
the only ones among you who will bereally happy are
those who have sought and found how to serve."

For the Christian our highestservice is to serve God
and we serve Him by serving our fellow man. In thewords
of another, “Our greatest legacy will be those who live
eternally inheaven because of our efforts," and Billy
Graham said, “I am convinced thegreatest act of love we
can ever perform for people is to tell them about
God’slove for them in Christ."

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, my choice today is to
loveand serve You all the days of my life. Please make
me usable and use me todayand every day to be and
effective witness for Jesus by helping me to be
‘asJesus’ in some way to every life I touch and do this
always for Your glory. Sohelp me God. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully inJesus’s
name, amen."

NOTE: Learn how to be a missionary right from your
ownhome, and have a vital part in worldwide gospel
outreach by becoming an ACTSPeople Power for Jesus
Partner. It’s very simple, non-threatening, and
withoutcost. See how at:
http://www.actsweb.org/people_power_invite.php.
Joshua 24:15 (NIV).Matthew 25:23 (NKJV).2 Corinthians
5:10 (NKJV).<Smile)))><

     
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
 
  Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Mon 21 Apr 2014, 4:10 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

The Day That Changed the World  

"I [Jesus] am the Living One; I was dead, and behold I
am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of
death and Hades [hell]."1

I recall reading about a father who was caught with his
two young daughters in a snow storm and lost his way.
When night fell he wrapped his jacket around his two
girls and lay on top of them to stop them from freezing
to death. The next day they were found by a search
party. The two girls were alive and well, but the
father had frozen to death. He gave his life to save
the ones he loved. 

That's exactly what Jesus did for you and me. He gave
his life to pay for the consequences of our sin--death.
And on Easter Sunday 2,000 years ago he arose from the
grave proving that he had forever overcome the power of
death and sin, and to guarantee resurrection for all
who put their trust in him. 

Rivas Zacharias talks about how Christ encounters us
today as he did the disciples on the morning of his
resurrection from the dead. "The disciples were the
ones marked out for death. Those who survived Jesus
were really the dead. And he, Jesus, the dead one, was
really the living one." 

And because he is the Living One, the day he rose from
the grave was the day that changed the world forever.
And the day that you and I commit our life to him and
receive his free pardon is the day that changes our
life--forever! 

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You that after
paying the penalty for all my sins, You arose from the
grave giving me the assurance that I, too, will also
arise from death because my trust, and my salvation, is
in You. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen." 

1. Revelation 1:18 (NIV). 

Note: If you have never accepted God’s forgiveness and
are assured of life after death in Heaven, please read
the article, “How to Be Sure You’re a Real Christian"
at: www.actsweb.org/christian.

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  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
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Post  Admin on Fri 18 Apr 2014, 11:48 am

Today's Daily Encounter
The Agony of the Cross Part II  

"Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man,
though for a good man someone might possibly dare to
die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this:
While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."3 

In yesterday's Daily Encounter we told the story about
the Argyle (prisoner) who, in a Japanese prison camp,
gave his life to save that of his fellow comrades.

Surely there is no greater love than what this prisoner
displayed. His was the supreme sacrifice. Knowing that
he wasn't guilty, he gave his life to save the lives of
his fellow prisoners. Even Jesus said, "Greater love
has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his
friends."4

And yet, Jesus did display an even greater love. As the
Apostle Paul wrote, "Very rarely will anyone die for a
righteous man, though for a good man someone might
possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love
for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ
[Jesus] died for us."5 

So why did Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Great
Creator of the universe, lay aside his external robes
of deity to be clothed in a garment of human flesh, and
left the glory of Heaven to come to earth as a man to
die for lost mankind? 

He did it because of his incredible love for us, to pay
the penalty for and consequences of our sin, which is
spiritual death. Spiritual death is not the cessation
of life. It is eternal separation from God, the author
of all love and life. Jesus died for us because it
breaks the heart of God to lose us forever in an
unthinkable eternity that God calls hell.

And when we consider the excruciation suffering caused
by crucifixion--the agony of which Jesus went through
for us--we can appreciate so much more the magnitude of
God's love for us. (Be sure to see tomorrow's Daily
Encounter for a medic's description of the brutality of
Roman crucifixions.)

To be concluded …

Suggested prayer: Suggested prayer: "Dear God, again I
thank You for Your incredible love gift to the world in
giving Your Son, Jesus the Christ, to die on the cross
in my place to save me from the dreadful consequences
of my sin. And, Lord Jesus, again I thank You for
giving Your life to pay the penalty for my sins so I
can be freely forgiven and receive Your gift of eternal
life. Help me to live a life in never-ending gratitude
to You for all You have done for me. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's
name, amen."

3. Romans 5:7-8 (NIV).
4. John 15:13 (NIV)
5. Romans 5:7-8 (NIV).

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
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  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
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Today's Daily Encounter

The Agony of the Cross Part III  

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and
only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish
but have eternal life."6 

According to a report by medical doctor Mark Eastman,
the suffering Jesus experienced on the cross is almost
unbearable just to think about it.

For instance, prior to Jesus' trial he was flogged by
the Roman guards. "This process typically involved a
whip with numerous leather thongs, 18-24 inches long,
with bits of metal, bone or glass embedded in the
leather…. Scourging was an extreme form of punishment.
The skin on the victim's back was usually shredded,
thus exposing the underlying muscle and skeletal
structures. Severe blood loss and dehydration were the
rule. Many victims died from such scourging. 

"After the scourging of Jesus, the Roman soldiers beat
Him a second time with their hands and with a reed.
Then they put on him a 'crown of thorns.'"7 

Then came the crucifixion. "It is arguably the most
painful death ever invented by man and is where we get
our term 'excruciating.' It was reserved primarily for
the most vicious of criminals."8 

Even though Pilate, the Roman Governor, said, "I find
no fault in this man," he gave in to the jealous crowd
and allowed Jesus to be crucified. With his arms
stretched out Jesus was nailed to a wooden cross. "The
nails, which were generally about 7-9 inches long, were
placed between the bones of the forearm (the radius and
ulna) and the small bones of the hands (the carpal
bones)," permanently destroying the largest nerve in
the hand "called the median nerve…. In addition to
severe burning pain the destruction of this nerve
causes permanent paralysis of the hand."9 

"The positioning of the feet is probably the most
critical part of the mechanics of crucifixion. First
the knees were flexed about 45 degrees and the feet
were flexed (bent downward) an additional 45 degrees
until they were parallel to the vertical pole. An iron
nail about 7-9 inches long was driven through the feet
between the 2nd and 3rd metatarsal bones. In this
position the nail would sever the dorsal pedal artery
of the foot, but the resulting bleeding would be
insufficient to cause death.

"The resulting position on the cross sets up a horrific
sequence of events which result in a slow, painful
death. Having been pinned to the cross, the victim now
has an impossible position to maintain….

"The result is that within a few minutes of being
placed on the cross, the shoulders will become
dislocated. Minutes later the elbows and wrists become
dislocated…. As time goes on, the victim is less and
less able to bear weight on the legs, causing further
dislocation of the arms and further raising of the
chest wall, making breathing more and more difficult.
The result of this process is a series of catastrophic
physiological effects"10 

Eventually, the heart begins to fail, the lungs
collapse, and the victim suffocates. He dies a slow,
unbelievably excruciating death. 

And all of this Jesus did for you and me gladly and
willingly because he loves us with an everlasting love.
He died on the cross to pay the penalty for your sins
and mine so we could be totally forgiven and given the
gift of eternal life with him in Heaven forever. The
good news is that Jesus, after three days, rose from
the dead assuring us that we who believe in him will
also rise from physical death to be alive forever with
God.

If you've never thanked Jesus for dying on the cruel
cross in your place, why not do this right now and ask
him to come into your heart and life as personal Lord
and Savior and accept his full and free forgiveness.

NOTE: For further help, click on the Know God button
below for a copy of "How to Be Sure You're a Real
Christian," or click on www.actsweb.org/christian. 

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, again I thank You for
giving Your life as a ransom price for my sins. And
because You gave your life for me please help me live
my life for You. Thank You for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

6. John 3:16 (NIV).
7. Page 10, Personal Update, "The Agony of Love," by
Mark Eastman, M.D.,Used by permission.
8. Ibid, Page 11. 
9. Ibid, Page 11. 
10. Ibid, Page 12. Web site of Mark Eastman, M.D.
http://www.MarsHill.org.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
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Post  Admin on Wed 16 Apr 2014, 1:41 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
The Agony of the Cross Part I  

"Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down
his life for his friends."1

He was in a work detail on the railroad. The day's work
had ended and the tools had been counted. When the
party was about to be dismissed, the Japanese guard
declared that a shovel was missing. He insisted that
someone had stolen it to sell it to the Thais. He
strode up and down the front of the men ranting and
denouncing them for their wickedness, their stupidity
and most unforgivable ingratitude to the Emperor. 

"Screaming in broken English he demanded that the
guilty one step forward to take his punishment. No one
moved. The guard's rage reached new heights of
violence. 'All die, all die,' he shrieked! 

"To show that he meant what he said he pulled back the
bolt, put the rifle to his shoulder, and looked down
the sights ready to fire at the first man he saw at the
end of them. 

"At that moment the Argyle stepped forward and stood
stiffly to attention and said calmly, 'I did it.' 

"The guard unleashed all his whipped up hatred. He
kicked the hapless prisoner and beat him with his fists
and still the Argyle (prisoner) stood rigidly at
attention. The blood was streaming down his face but he
made no sound. The guard seized his rifle by the barrel
and lifted it high over his head and with a final howl
brought the butt down on the skull of the Argyle who
sank limply to the ground and did not move. Although it
was perfectly evident that he was dead, the guard
continued to beat him and stopped only when exhausted. 

"The men of the work detail picked up their comrade's
body, shouldered their tools and marched back to camp.
When the tools were counted again at the guardhouse, no
shovel was missing.2 

To be continued …

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, how true it is that we
live in a world of injustice, evil, and cruelty. Please
help me to so live that my life will be a channel of
Your love and, even if only in a small way, help make
my world a better place in which to live. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's
name, amen."

1. John 15:13  (NIV).
2. Taken from The Bridge Over the River Kwai as read by
David Stoop.

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  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
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Post  Admin on Tue 15 Apr 2014, 6:44 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Living in a Boomerang World

“When you ask [pray], you do not receive, because you
ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get
on your pleasures."1 “God is near to all who call on
him; to all who call on him in truth."2

There’s an old joke about the Australian aborigine who
was given a brand new boomerang for his birthday.
Unfortunately he couldn't throw his old one away--it
kept coming back.

Life’s kind of like that. Have you ever tried to throw
away an old bad habit ... or a self-defeating
addiction?

Someone said that the best way to break a bad habit is
to drop it. Sure would be great if it were that easy.
It isn’t. However, if we don’t break the habit or
addiction, it will have a way of breaking us.

So how do we break a bad habit and/or a self-defeating
addiction?

First, we need to admit that we have a problem and that
it has us beaten. The only person God or anyone else
can ever help is the one who admits, “I have a problem.
I need help"--and genuinely means it and is prepared to
do something about it. Bad habits and addictions
rarely, if ever, leave us without a battle.

Second, we need to avoid playing the blame-game at all
costs and accept full responsibility for our actions
and our recovery.

Third, we need to realize that bad habits and
especially addictions are a means to medicate some
inner problem or pain that we have never faced, dealt
with and resolved. Bad habits and addictions are almost
always the “fruit of a deeper root."

Fourth, we need to seek qualified help, be it a
support/recovery group and/or that of a qualified
counselor/therapist. We need this support in order to
keep us accountable and to help us stop acting out our
addiction and thereby medicating (deadening) the pain.
To heal it we need to feel it. Medicating it stops us
from facing and resolving it.

Fifth, we need to pray the right prayer. Many people
beg God to deliver them from their destructive symptoms
but never think to realize that they need to pray that
God will confront them with the reality of the cause/s
that drives them to act out in destructive habits
and/or addictions. It is only as we face and confront
the truth--the real cause/s--behind our destructive
habits that we have any chance of recovery.

As Dr. Cecil Osborne used to day, “When we are hiding a
deeper sin or fault we tend to confess a lesser one all
the more vigorously." That is; instead of confessing
the cause/causes of our behavior we get obsessed with
and confess only the symptom. This tends to reinforce
the addiction rather than overcome it because “whatever
the mind dwells on, the body acts on."

When we pray for truth and genuinely mean it, God
always answers. Once we see the truth (cause) of our
problem, we usually know what we need to do about
resolving it. As God’s Word says, “The LORD is near to
all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth."2

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, no matter what problems I
struggle with, please help me to see the real cause/s
behind them and, with Your help, accept full
responsibility for dealing with them. Also, please lead
me to the help I need to overcome. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's
name, amen."

NOTE: For helpful recovery and counseling resources go
to http://tinyurl.com/85cel

1. James 4:3 (NIV).
2. Psalm 145:18 (NIV).

<Smile)))><

NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ,
please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.

* * * * * * *
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Post  Admin on Mon 14 Apr 2014, 6:18 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Correcting One's Course  

"Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of
season; correct, rebuke and encourage--with great
patience and careful instruction."1

The following story has been around on the email for a
while but it isn't true. It does make for a good
parable however. "Once upon a time" there was a radio
conversation between two ships off the coast of
Neverland.

Ship One: Please divert your course 15 degrees to the
North to avoid a collision.

Ship Two: Recommend you divert YOUR course 15 degrees
to the South to avoid a collision.

Ship One: This is the Captain of a navy ship. I say
again, divert YOUR course.

Ship Two: No, I say again, you divert YOUR course.

Ship One: This is an AIRCRAFT CARRIER and we are
accompanied by numerous support vessels. I demand that
YOU change YOUR course 15 degrees north, that's one
five degrees north, or counter measures will be taken
to ensure the safety of this ship.

Ship Two: This is a lighthouse. Your call.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me not to be
carried away with my own importance, never blame others
for my problems, and always be open to correction and
guidance. Thank You for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. 2 Timothy 4:2 (NIV).

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  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
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Post  Admin on Fri 11 Apr 2014, 12:56 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

The Persecuted Church  Part 2  

Faarook, a former Muslim whom I wrote about yesterday
and whose life was threatened because he became a
Christian, emailed me to let me know he has received
employment with a permit to live and work in a Western
country. Praise God for this answered prayer.

“Blessed be the Lord, for he showed his wonderful love
to me when I was in a besieged city."1

In this age of ever-increasing terrorism, those of us
who live in the free world need to recall what happened
to ancient Rome--the superpower nation that ruled the
then known world for 800 years. Timothy George in
Christianity Today writes how, in the year 410, the
city of Rome “was besieged and pillaged by an army of
40,000 ‘barbarians’ led by the Osama bin Laden of late
antiquity, a wily warrior named Alaric. One can still
see the effects of this cataclysmic event when walking
through the ruins of the Roman Forum today."2

“Before then, Roman coins bore the legend Invicta Roma
Aeterna: eternal, unconquerable Rome. In many ways,
Rome was like America prior to 9/11, the world's only
superpower. But in 410, Rome's military power could not
prevent its walls being breached, its women raped, and
its sacred precincts burned and sacked.“When Jerome
heard about the fall of Rome in faraway Bethlehem, he …
sat stupefied in total silence for three days. ‘Rome
was besieged,’ Jerome wrote to a friend. ‘The city to
which the whole world fell has fallen. If Rome can
perish, what can be safe?’"

A few short years later, “As Augustine lay dying in
430, a new wave of terror swept across the
Mediterranean world. The Vandals, led by a ferocious
warrior named Genseric, surrounded Hippo--bringing
torture, violence, and disarray to its churches and its
people. As Augustine chanted the psalms on his
deathbed, he might have come across this verse in Psalm
31:21: ‘Blessed be the Lord, for he showed his
wonderful love to me when I was in a besieged city.’"3

Most of us in the West know little, if anything, about
being persecuted as are many Christians in today’s
world. At most, Christians have been criticized while
multiplied thousands, if not millions, in other lands
are being raped, their homes and villages pillaged, and
are being murdered and slaughtered for their faith in
Christ. 

As with the ancient Romans we in the U.S. tend to think
such persecution couldn’t happen here. However, unless
we realize our dependence on God, September 11, 2001,
may just be the beginning of what is to come in the
days and years ahead. Radical Muslims are determined to
conquer and/or kill all non-Muslims--especially
Christians, Jews and Americans.

So what can we do, not only in the U.S., but also
throughout the free world? First, we who claim to be
Christians need to be sure of our own faith and
commitment to God and be ever thankful for our freedom
and incredible blessings. Second, we need to pray for
our Christian brothers and sisters who are being
persecuted. Third,we also need to pray for their
persecutors and the terrorists that they will pray to
the God of Heaven to reveal to them the truth. Fourth,
we need to support valid organizations that are
ministering to the persecuted church. [See footnote.4] 

Fifth, we need to pray for the leaders of the free
world that they will also pray to God that they will
see the truth of the world situation and act with great
courage, wisdom, and integrity. And sixth, above all,
you and I need to stand firm lest we fall.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, especially in this day and
age of increasing terrorism around the world, help me
to stand firm in my faith and trust in You, and please
send a great spiritual awakening to my country so that
our leaders will turn to and depend on You for
guidance, protection, wisdom in knowing how to deal
with terrorists. And help protect the persecuted Church
no matter where it is. Thank You for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name,
amen."

1. Psalm 31:21.
2. Timothy George, “Theology for an Age of Terror,"
Christianity Today, September 2006, Vol. 50, No. 9,
Page 78. Online at http://tinyurl.com/pn4r8.Copyright ©️
2006 Christianity Today.
3. Ibid.
4. NOTE: Organizations that minister to the persecuted
Church. Open Doors at www.odusa.org/ and The Voice of
the Martyrs at www.persecution.net/. These
organizations were recommended by Dan Wooding of Assist
News Service at www.assistnews.net.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
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  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
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Post  Admin on Thu 10 Apr 2014, 4:49 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Listen to Your Heart

"When you are on your beds, search your hearts and be
silent."1

Melody Beattie in her book, The Language of Letting Go,
emphasizes the importance of contemplating what is on
your mind first thing when you wake up in the morning?
What is it in that half-asleep, half-awake place? Are
you troubled about something? Is there some
responsibility you have neglected and it is bothering
you? Is it a goal you've wanted to start but have kept
putting it off? Is it an unhealthy relationship you are
in and you know you need to get out of? Is it a
destructive habit or sin that you feel convicted about?

Very often what is on your mind at this time is coming
from your inner self, your unconscious mind. It is
revealing an issue you need to deal with. Listen to
that "inner voice" and do what you know you need to do
about it that is troubling you or motivating you. Don't
put it off. Take care of it each day.

It can help to have a pad and pen at your bedside and
the first thing each morning write down what is on your
mind as you awaken. This is often a matter one needs to
pray about and then act on.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, as Your Word suggests,
help me to learn to listen carefully to what my heart
is saying and what You might be saying to my heart, and
give me the wisdom and courage to act accordingly.
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Psalm 4:4 (NIV).

<Smile)))><

NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ,
please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.

* * * * * * *

Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International.
When copying or forwarding include the following:
"Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
ACTS International.

Today's Daily Encounter
The Persecuted Church Part I

“Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of
courage; be strong."1

Several months ago Faarooq (name changed), a Daily
Encounter subscriber wrote to me saying, “I converted
from I'lam to Christianity 10 years ago and had to be
very secretive about it until I managed to flee my
homeland and came to France.

“Now at the age of 32 I have gone public about my
Christian faith and started a debate on the net with my
parents discussing the teachings of I'lam which
Mohammed claimed were God's words. But now I am getting
death threats.

“You see, the Koran says that people like me who were
M'slims and converted to Christianity are worse than
those born Christians. Ex-M'slims who were born in the
M'slim faith and left it have to be slaughtered like
cattle as a sacrifice to Allah, while those born
Christians are lost but they'll give them a chance
first to convert to I'lam before they kill them.

“My problem is that my visa is about to expire and I
can’t renew it. Returning to my homeland will
undoubtedly be a death sentence unless I convert back
to I'lam. Do you have any advice as to what I can
and/or should do?"

Sadly, my only advice to Faarooq was to see if he could
obtain a visa to a Western country. I don’t know what
happened to him because I haven’t heard from him since.

I wonder what I/we would do if the current of radical
I'lam fanaticism should sweep across the country where
I live? Would I remain faithful to the Lord or, to save
my neck, would I convert to I'lam?

To be continued ….

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, today I pray for Faarooq
and the multiplied thousands who also fear for their
lives because they are Christians. Please keep them
safe and give them the courage to be lights in a dark
world … and grant that their persecutors when seeing
Jesus in them, will want You for themselves. And please
give me the courage always to be faithful to You no
matter what my circumstances might turn out to be.
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. 1 Corinthians 16:13 (NIV).

<Smile)))><

NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ,
please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.

* * * * * * *

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When copying or forwarding include the following:
"Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Tue 08 Apr 2014, 5:18 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Relationships

"And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some
people do, but encourage and warn each other,
especially now that the day of his [Jesus] coming back
again is drawing near."1

I'm sure you've heard the old example of how to keep a
fire burning in a fireplace. It's about keeping the
burning logs and coals stoked together. Coals that fall
away from the body of the fire soon become cold and
their fire goes out.

This is an excellent illustration of why those who
claim to be believers in Jesus need to be actively
involved in a good church. To keep on fire--that is,
enthusiastic, regarding our faith we need fellowship
and connection with fellow Christians.

Furthermore, we were created for relationships.
Christianity is not only having a right relationship
with God, but also with others. Healthy relationships
are vital for healthy living and meaningful
growth--physical, emotional, and spiritual. We may
exist but cannot live meaningfully and healthily in
isolation.

God himself is in relationship: God the Father, God the
Son, and God the Holy Spirit. And one of the first
things Jesus did at the commencement of his earthly
ministry was to choose twelve "that they might be with
him."2

We need not only to "walk with Jesus" but also with
each other. None of us can make it alone. We weren't
meant to. Likewise we need to belong to a fellowship
filled with warm and loving Christians to help keep us
"on fire" for God.

Note: Be sure to read the article, "What a Good Church
Can Do for You" at http://tinyurl.com/bs9jf.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, help me to stay connected
to loving and supportive Christians so I can stay
enthusiastic about my Christian faith and 'on fire' for
You. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Hebrews 10:25 (NLT).
2. Mark 3:14.

<Smile)))><

NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ,
please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.

* * * * * * *
Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International.
When copying or forwarding include the following:
"Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
ACTS International.

Today's Daily Encounter
Encouragement Energizes

"Therefore encourage one another and build each other
up, just as in fact you are doing."1

"A study was done by psychologist Dr. Henry H. Goddard,
on energy levels in children. He used an instrument he
called the 'ergograph.' How he ever got some children
to stand still long enough to connect them to the
machine is a mystery. But he did, and his findings are
fascinating.

"He found that when tired children are given a word of
praise or encouragement, the ergograph shows an
immediate upward surge of new energy. When the children
are criticized and discouraged, the ergograph shows
their physical energy take a sudden nosedive."2

I'm sure the same principle applies to teenagers and
adults of any age. When we are genuinely thanked,
praised, and encouraged, we definitely feel much better
and energized. And when we are criticized or just feel
bad, our energy level certainly falls and we are
de-energized.

We all need to be encouraged daily … so let's decide
that we will first of all be encouragers ourselves,
especially to those we love the most, to our friends,
and also to strangers as opportunities arise.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to develop
the gift of encouragement and use this gift liberally
to all who come into my life who need a word of good
cheer. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. 1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NIV).
2. From: Holwick's Illustrations,
http://www.holwick.com/. Cited on WITandWisdom by
Richard Wimer. www.witandwisdom.org.

<Smile)))><

NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ,
please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.

* * * * * * *

Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International.
When copying or forwarding include the following:
"Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
ACTS International.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 58823
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 74
Location : Wales UK

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