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Post  Admin on Fri 28 Feb 2014, 5:31 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
A True Winner  

"Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters
... in singleness of your heart as unto Christ; Not
with eye-service as men-pleasers; but as servants of
Christ, doing the will of God from the heart."1

Craig Saunders wrote about an experience he witnessed
when he attended a Special Olympics for the Handicapped
where several people from his church were competing. He
shared how in the 220 track race a very fast runner
named Andrew was 50 yards ahead of the rest of the
runners when he glanced back and saw his best friend
fall. The crowd at the finishing post was yelling to
Andrew, "Come on, come on, come on!"

But Andrew stopped and went back and took his friend's
hand and lifted him to his feet and they ran together
to finish the race.

The entire crowd stood to their feet and applauded. As
Saunders said, "It was an amazing sight because that's
what the Special Olympics are about. People don't
consider being 'Number One.' The most important thing
is that people finish the race."

Andrew won the Sportsman Award at those Special
Olympics because he was more concerned about being
"Number One" to his friend than being "Number One" to
the crowd.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please grant that I will
always want to please You and be there for my friends,
and not allow my life or lifestyle be that of wanting
the adulation of the crowd. And please help me to
finish the race that You have set before me. Thank You
for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in
Jesus's name, amen."

1. Ephesians 6:5-6.

<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 Person God Uses  

"Now it is required that those who have been given a
trust must prove faithful."1

In God's order there is work for everyone to do. He
doesn't call many to be a "Billy Graham or a Mother
Teresa," but he does call all of us to be faithful in
using the gifts and abilities he has given to us. In
case we don't feel worthy to be of much use to God, it
can help to look at the frailties of many of God's
servants in the Bible.

Somebody has pointed out that: "Moses stuttered.
David's armor didn't fit. John Mark was rejected by
Paul. Hosea's wife was a prostitute. Amos's only
training was in the school of fig-tree pruning. Jacob
was a liar. David had an affair. Solomon was too rich.
Abraham was too old. David was too young. Timothy had
ulcers. Peter was afraid of death.

"Lazarus was dead. John was self-righteous. Jesus was
too poor. Naomi was a widow. Paul was a murderer. So
was Moses. Jonah ran from God. Miriam was a gossip.
Gideon and Thomas both doubted. Jeremiah was depressed
and suicidal. Elijah was burned out. John the Baptist
was a loudmouth. Martha was a worry-wart. Samson had
long hair. Noah got drunk. Did I mention that Moses had
a short fuse? So did Peter as did Paul."

True, we all have areas of weakness and have
experienced failure at some level, but God will still
use every one who makes him or herself available to
God. So let's be sure we are serving God by faithfully
using the gifts and talents he has given to each of us.
It's a great privilege and a great opportunity--plus it
has eternal rewards.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please give me the
want-to-be what You want me to be and the want-to-do
what You want me to do using the gifts and abilities
You have given to me--and help me to love and serve You
faithfully all the days of my life. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's
name, amen."

1. 1 Corinthians 4:2 (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.
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Post  Admin on Wed 26 Feb 2014, 9:03 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Ob Portu  

"Behold, now is the accepted time; today is the day of
salvation."1

"Opportunity," James Wallace said, "comes to pass--not
to pause."

I have read that in the days before modern harbors, a
ship had to wait for the flood tide to make it into
port. The term for this in Latin was called ob portu.
That is, a ship wanting to enter port had to wait for
the moment when the tide was exactly right to carry it
to harbor. The captain and the crew waited for the
precise moment when the tide was right because they
knew if they missed it, they would have to wait for
another tide to come in. Shakespeare used this idea to
write one of his famous passages:

    There is a tide in the affairs of men,
    Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;
    Omitted, all the voyage of their life
    Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
    On such a full sea are we now afloat;
    And we must take the current when it serves,
    Or lose our venture.

The English word "opportunity" is derived from the
term, ob portu. God gives every one of us many ob
portus or flood tides. That is, he gives us many
opportunities to serve him, to dedicate our lives more
fully to him, to grow and become more like him, and to
make something beautiful out of our life for time and
eternity. These opportunities rarely come gift wrapped,
tied with a bow and ribbon. They come in much more
subtle ways.

And best of all he gives each of us the opportunity to
accept him as our personal Lord and Savior, to have our
sins forgiven and receive the gift of eternal life. As
God's Word says, "Behold, now is the accepted time;
today is the day of salvation."  For help be sure to
read the article, "How to Be Sure You're a Real
Christian--Without having to be religious" at:
http://www.actsweb.org/christian

Remember, "Opportunity comes to pass--not to pause." So
whatever it is God is calling you to be or do, don't
miss your ob portu.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, help me to recognize the
opportunities that come every day for me to be what You
want me to be and to do what You want me to do. And, no
matter how You call, when You have something special
for me to do, help me to hear and obey that call no
matter how quiet or subtle it may be. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's
name, amen."

1. 2 Corinthians 6:2.

<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 Tue 25 Feb 2014, 10:16 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Reflections  

"But we Christians have no veil over our faces; we can
be mirrors that brightly reflect the glory of the Lord.
And as the Spirit of the Lord works within us, we
become more and more like Him."1

Corrie Ten Boom said, "If a bird is flying for
pleasure, it flies with the wind, but if it meets
danger it turns and faces the wind, in order that it
may rise higher."

Bernard Brunstang believes that "people who have
setbacks and trouble often emerge with values and
priorities that are higher and nobler, more sensitivity
and understanding of the difficulties of others, and a
new appreciation of how much people mean to them."

"Life is like a grindstone. Whether it grinds you down
or polishes you up depends upon what you are made of."

Stan Buck tells the story about a little girl who, on
their way home from church, turned to her mother and
said, "Mommy, the preacher's sermon this morning
confused me."

The mother said, "Oh! Why is that?

The girl replied, "Well, he said that God is bigger
than we are. Is that true?"

"Yes, that's true," the mother replied.

"He also said that God lives within us. Is that true
too?"

Again the mother replied, "Yes."

"Well," said the girl. "if God is bigger than we are
and he lives in us, wouldn't he show through?"

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to be as
Jesus today to whomever You bring into my life and
grant that my life will mirror Your beauty and Your
love to them. And grant that they, seeing Jesus in me,
will want him for themselves. Thank You for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name,
amen."

1. 2 Corinthians 3:18 (TLB).

<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 24 Feb 2014, 10:43 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

When Men Forget God  

"Timothy, my son, I give you this instruction in
keeping with the prophecies once made about you, so
that by following them you may fight the good fight,
holding on to faith and a good conscience. Some have
rejected these and so have shipwrecked their faith."1

At the time Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn was awarded the
Nobel Peace Prize he was asked the question, "What made
it possible for the Russian Revolution to take place
and for Communism to rise to power?"

Solzhenitsyn's reply was simple and direct: "Men forgot
God."

What tragedies occur when nations forget God! History
is replete with such examples. And what tragedies can
befall individuals and their families when they, too,
forget God.

I have seen men and women who have grown up in the
church, profess to be Christians and been active in
church work get caught up in the secular world system
with its thirst for material gain and seek to climb the
ladder of success--and little by little drift away from
the church, forsake their Christian heritage, and
gradually forget God.

Twenty years later, some have made shipwreck of their
lives. Committing our lives to God won't deliver us
from the problems of life, but faith in his Son, Jesus
Christ, gives us an anchor to hold on to when the
storms of life surround us and the tough times threaten
to overwhelm us.

Sometimes life can be heartbreaking. We ask why but
cannot find an answer. We search for a light to see us
through the night but are overcome by the darkness. But
when we have a solid faith in Jesus, as the gospel song
says, "When answers aren't enough, he is there!"

And this may be all we need to know to keep us from
forgetting God and making shipwreck of our lives. And
would to God that our nation's leaders would take note
of those nations that forgot God.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, help me never to forget
Your goodness to me and Your everlasting love and grant
that, no matter how dark the night, I will never turn
from You. And graciously grant that our nation will
turn to and never forget You. Thank You for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name,
amen."

1. 1 Timothy 1:18-19 (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.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 63260
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 74
Location : Wales UK

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Post  Admin on Fri 21 Feb 2014, 10:42 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Excuses, Excuses  

"But he, wanting to justify himself, said to Jesus,
'And who is my neighbor?'"1

Excuses. I guess there is never a shortage of them. The
following notes from parents excusing their children
from attending school have been around a while but if
you haven't seen them, I'm sure you will get a kick out
of them:

"Please excuse Freddie from being away yesterday
because he had the fuel."

"Please accuse Michael from being absent on January 30
because he was aleing."

"George was absent yesterday because of a sore trout."

"Please excuse Betsey from being absent. She was sick
and I had her shot."

"Joseph has been absent 'becuz' he had two teeth taken
off his face."

"My son is under doctor's care and should not take
fisical education. Please execute him."

"Please excuse Ralph from school on Friday. He had very
loose vowels."

And how did Adam excuse and justify himself when he
sinned and disobeyed God? Many say he blamed Eve. But
he really blamed God. "It was the woman you gave me
that made me do it," he said to God! And then the woman
blamed the serpent!

I often wonder how many of us blame either God or the
devil for the things that have gone wrong in our lives,
things which were the direct result of the choices we
made all by ourselves. Sometimes, to blame God, the
devil, or anybody else for our problems is a handy
excuse to hang on to if we don't want to face reality,
accept responsibility, and grow up!

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, help me always to be
honest with myself and face reality, and always accept
responsibility for the things I say, the things I do,
the feelings I feel, and the motives behind all of
these. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Luke 10:29.

<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
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Post  Admin on Thu 20 Feb 2014, 11:29 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Working Together  

"Two are better than one, because they have a good
return for their work."1

Charles Osgood tells the story of two ladies who lived
in a convalescent center. Both ladies had suffered
serious strokes. Margaret's left side had been
restricted, while Ruth's right side was affected.

Both ladies had been accomplished pianists but had
given up hope of ever playing again.

The director of the center suggested to the two ladies
that they try playing the piano together. They did, and
succeeded. They played excellent music and, better
still, developed a beautiful friendship.

Three thousand years ago Solomon wrote, "Two are better
than one, because they have a good return for their
work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up.
But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him
up! Also, if two lie down together, they will keep
warm. But how can one keep warm alone?"2

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please give me a friend
with whom I can work so that together we can serve You
and develop a beautiful friendship and thus be doubly
rewarded, and in so doing be a blessing to many others.
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Ecclesiastes 4:9 (NIV).
2. Ecclesiastes 4:9-11 (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.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  
  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 Wed 19 Feb 2014, 5:12 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Never Too Old ... Part I  

"So here I am today, eighty-five years old! I am still
as strong today as the day Moses sent me out; I'm just
as vigorous to go out to battle now as I was then. Now
give me this hill country that the Lord promised me
that day. You yourself heard then that the Anakites
were there and their cities were large and fortified,
but, the Lord helping me, I will drive them out just as
he said."1

When the Israelites were conquering the Promised Land
that God had given to them, Caleb said to Joshua, "Give
me this hill country to conquer!" Caleb was eighty-five
years of age at the time. (Admittedly, they lived a lot
longer back then.)

If God had given the Israelites the Promised Land, how
come they had to fight for it? Because God's giving it
to them made it possible for them to conquer it. Had
God handed it to them on a silver platter, they never
would have learned to trust him nor become responsible
and mature individuals.

Caleb achieved his goal because he knew precisely what
God's purpose was for both Israel and himself, and he
didn't allow his age to hold him back.

If we, too, want to achieve something worthwhile with
our life, regardless of our age, it is imperative that
we, too, know what our God-given life purpose is--and
act accordingly.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, I'm willing and wanting to
be used by You. Help me to fulfill my God-given life
purpose. Please make it plain what You want me to be
and do. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Joshua 14:10-12 (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

Never too Old ... Part II  

"Now it is required that those who have been given a
trust must prove faithful."1

Some years ago a man in his sixties was offered
$200,000 for his roadside motel, restaurant and service
station which he had spent his life building. He turned
it down because he didn't want to retire.

Two years later when he was sixty-five, a new highway
was built that bypassed his business, which
subsequently went broke. Most people at his age would
have thrown in the towel. Not this man. He knew how to
cook chicken so he took off across the country in his
battered old car to sell his recipe to other
restaurants. It was tough going. I have read that his
recipe was rejected by 1,000 restaurants before he
found a taker. However, he stuck with his goal and
within a few years he had built a restaurant chain
across the country and spread it to other lands as
well--a chain called Kentucky Fried Chicken. The man's
name? Colonel Sanders.

I don't know if Colonel Sanders' purpose was God-given
or not, but having a life purpose that is God-given, as
the Israelites had, won't make life easy, but it will
make life worthwhile and give you something to live for
that is bigger than yourself.

And if it is a God-given purpose, with God's help, it
is possible to achieve if we have the fortitude of a
Caleb and a will-to-win like Colonel Sanders. It will
also make our lives very worthwhile.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, help me to discover my
God-given life purpose and, with Your help, do
everything in my power to see Your purpose in and
through me fulfilled. Thank You for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name,
amen."

1. 1 Corinthians 4:2 (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.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 63260
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 74
Location : Wales UK

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Post  Admin on Mon 17 Feb 2014, 11:47 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Let the Church ...  

"Give and it will be given to you. A good measure,
pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be
poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it
will be measured to you."1

The story is told about an old fashioned preacher who
was preaching up a storm as he proclaimed with great
enthusiasm, "Let the church walk!"

An old-timer sitting on the front pew was equally
enthusiastic. He blurted out for all to hear, "Amen!
Preacher. Let the church walk!"

With even greater enthusiasm the preacher responded,
"Let the church run!"

"Amen!" responded the brother on the front pew, "Let
the church run!"

Being greatly encouraged, the preacher cried out even
more enthusiastically, "Let the church fly!"

"Amen," hollered back the man on the front pew, "Let
the church fly!"

"But," said the preacher, "It takes money to make the
church fly!"

"AMEN," shouted the old timer again, "Let the church
walk!"

People all around us are lost. Vast numbers are headed
for a lost eternity, without Jesus and without hope, to
the place the Bible calls: "hell." Whatever and
wherever hell is, of one thing we can be sure and that
is that hell is forever!

The reality is that it takes money to do God's work on
earth--to rescue people from hell. So many of us, at
least in the West, have unbelievable resources compared
to so much of the rest of the world and it has been
said that less than 5% of us tithe of our income!

God has given us so much. He gave his Son, Jesus, to
die on the cross for us to give us the gift of eternal
life. And in the West, at least, he has given us
incredible resources. And why has God given us these
resources? For selfish ends? No. So we would be
equipped to do God's work around the world.

It has been said that God's work done in God's way will
not lack God's provision. However, God's way is to fund
his work through the tithes and offerings of his
people. But if the givers don't give, the doers can't
do, and the laborers in the field can't sow or reap! 

If every Christian tithed there would be sufficient
funds to do all of God's work around the world.

Our check (cheque) book stubs are a pretty good
indication of how grateful we are to God for all that
he has done for us and an accurate indication of where
our hearts are.

God is calling every one of us to give and to give
wisely to what God is doing in the world today! "For,"
as Jesus said, "with the measure you use, it will be
measured to you," and "the Lord loves a cheerful
giver!"

Suggested prayer. "Dear God please give me a thankful
heart for all that You have done for me. Help me to be
a generous giver and not just a taker. Forgive me if in
any way I have robbed You of your tithes and offerings
that You have entrusted to me. I choose today to put
You first in my giving. Help me always to remember that
'the tithe' (10% at least) is Yours. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's
name, amen."

1. Luke 6:38 (NIV).

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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 Sat 15 Feb 2014, 5:01 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

The Power of Stickability  

"Demas has forsaken me, having loved this present
world."1

According to a television documentary, the cheetah
survives by outrunning its prey. It can sprint up to
seventy miles per hour, but only in short bursts. While
it has a very lithe body that is built for speed, it
has a tiny heart which gives it no staying power.
Unless it catches its prey in its first burst of
energy, it has to give up the chase.

When it comes to serving God and doing his work there
are many "cheetahs." They start well with great
enthusiasm and great vigor but finish poorly. As soon
as the way gets rough and life tough, they tire and
abandon the cause and drop out of the race. What is
needed is not more speed but more staying power.

We all need bigger hearts for the greater abilities of
stick-ability and dependability.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me not to be a
'cheetah,' but rather to have staying power to be what
You want me to be and do what You want me to do. Thank
You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in
Jesus's name, amen."

1. 2 Timothy 4:10.

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Post  Admin on Thu 13 Feb 2014, 2:36 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Angels Unawares  

"Continue to love each other with true brotherly love.
Don't forget to be kind to strangers, for some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing
it!"1

Someone has wisely said, "The great thing in life is
not so much what we are doing at the moment, but the
direction in which we are headed."

This was certainly true for a couple in Germany that I
read about who, many years ago, were preparing their
evening meal when they heard a knock at their door.
When they opened the door, standing there in the deep
winter cold, was an ill-clad youth asking for food. The
couple took him in to give him food and shelter for the
night.

Being Christians, they prayed for this rather destitute
young man. Somehow they both felt that they should take
him into their home and, in time, adopt him as their
own son. Little did they know who this stranger was and
what he would accomplish with his life. His name?
Martin Luther.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, I'm available again today.
Please make me usable and use me to be as Jesus to
whomever You bring into my life today. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's
name, amen."

1. Hebrews 13:1-2 (TLB) (NLT).

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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.
  
  * * * * * * * 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
Just Suppose  

"My son [and/or daughter] give me your heart ... for
out of it are the issues of life."1

Zig Ziglar tells the story about an elderly man playing
an organ in a cathedral in Europe. He was playing sad
and melancholy music. It was sad because this was his
last day as organist of the cathedral. He was being
replaced by a younger musician.

At dusk, somebody stepped into the cathedral. Seeing
the younger man, the organist stopped playing, locked
the organ and slipped the key into his pocket. He was
approached by the young man, who simply said, "Please,
the key."

On receiving the key, the young organist went to the
organ and began to pay.

While the old man had played beautifully and
skillfully, the young man played with sheer genius.
Incredible music came rolling out of that beautiful old
organ.

This was the world's introduction to the music of
Johann Sebastian Bach. The old man, with tears in his
eyes, said, "Suppose--just suppose--I had not given the
master the key!"

Have you given the Master of Life the key--the key to
your heart and to your life?

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, I surrender the key to my
heart and life to You. Please make me the man/woman of
God You want me to be. Do with my life as You will.
Please use me to be a part of what You are doing in the
world today. Thank You for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Proverbs 23:26 with 4:23 (NIV & KJV).

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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 Tue 11 Feb 2014, 11:28 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Never Alone  

"Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of
death, I will fear no evil, for you [God/Jesus] are
with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me….
Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of
my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD
forever."1

Dr. David Sylvester tells how, "During World War II, a
young Jewish man known as Solomon, his wife, and sons
Jacob and David were subjected to the horrors of a Nazi
concentration camp. Prisoners were forced to work
torturous hours in the fields, or were burned to death
in the ovens if found to be of little or no value as a
worker. Little David had an injured leg, which required
a brace rendering him unable to work in the fields.
Upon his arrival from work, Solomon inquired of Jacob
as to the whereabouts of his younger son, David, and
the boys' mother.

"Jacob whimpered, 'The soldiers came to take David to
the ovens, and Mother went with him so that he would
not have to go alone.'"2

We have the promise of our Lord Jesus Christ that
wherever we go or whatever we may experience--including
the valley of death, he will go with us. The Psalmist
said, 'Even though I walk through the valley of the
shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you [God] are
with me.' And Jesus himself promised that he would
never ever leave or forsake us.3

And so we are graphically reminded again how Jesus, the
eternal Son of God, came as a babe so that we would
never have to face death alone. He loved us so much
that he went alone in our place to die on that
excruciatingly painful Roman cross to pay the penalty
for all of our sins so that we could be freely forgiven
by God, receive his gift of eternal life, and never
ever have to face eternal death which is eternal
separation from God, the author of all love and life. 

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, how can I ever thank You
enough for your great love in giving Your Son, Jesus,
to die in my place to pay the penalty for all my sins
so that I can be freely forgiven and receive Your gift
of eternal life? Help me to so live that my life will
be a living sacrifice for You in gratitude for all that
You have done for me. Thank You for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name,
amen."

Note: If you have never accepted God's gift of
forgiveness and eternal life, for a prayer to help you
to do this click on "God's Invitation" at
http://tinyurl.com/6k49w.

1. Psalm 23:4, 6 (NIV).
2. Dr. David Sylvester, Denton, Texas.
3. Hebrews 13:5.

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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 Mon 10 Feb 2014, 10:04 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

When Prayer Falls on Deaf Ears  

"If we ask anything according to God's will, he hears
us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask,
we know that we have the request which we have asked
from him."1

A Daily Encounter subscriber writes, "Being the
doubting Thomas that I am, I feel that my prayers fall
on deaf ears and my wife and I even argue about the
effect of prayer today. If the power of prayer were
effective today, I feel there would be less death,
sickness, and turmoil. I struggle with it all."

Certainly at times it can be difficult to understand
why some prayers seem to get answered while others seem
to never get answered. However, we also need to realize
that sometimes God answers, "Yes" … sometimes "no" …
sometimes, "wait a while." So, what makes the
difference?

First, pray in harmony with God's will. To get a "yes"
answer to prayer, as today's Scripture points out, it
is essential that all of our prayers are in harmony
with God's will. When we pray accordingly, we have the
assurance that God both hears and answers our prayers.
To know how to pray in harmony with God's will, we need
to know what God's Word, the Bible, teaches. Of this we
can be certain, God will never answer a prayer that is
opposed to his Word.

Second, pray the right prayer. Realize that some
prayers don't get answered because we aren't praying
the right prayer; that is, we may be praying with wrong
motives. As God's Word also points out: "You do not
have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do
not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that
you may spend what you get on your pleasures."2

Third, pray about causes. Another wrong prayer is when
we want and ask God to deliver us from the symptoms of
problems while we are in denial about or are avoiding
facing and praying about the cause/s of the problem.
For example, if we have stomach ulcers, there is no
point asking God to heal this problem if we don't face
and deal with the cause of the ulcers. In most cases
it's not what we eat that cause stomach ulcers, but
rather what is "eating" us, which could be stress,
guilt caused by unconfessed sin, an impaired
relationship, or any of a hundred other
causes--especially including super-charged repressed
negative emotions. As John Powell has said, "When I
repress my emotions, my stomach keeps score."

Fourth, Pray believing. Faith, too, is essential for
effective prayer. As Jesus said, "All things, whatever
you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive,"3 and
"according to your faith will it be done to you."4

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please give me a love for
learning what Your Word, the Bible, teaches so that I
will always know how to pray in harmony with Your will.
Also help me to see anything that I may be contributing
to the problems I am experiencing, and help me always
to pray believing and with the right motives. Thank You
for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in
Jesus's name, amen."

For additional help, see the article, "How to Get
Prayer Answered," at:
http://www.actsweb.org/articles/article.php?i=114&d=1&c=10&p=1.


1. 1 John 5:14-15 (NIV).
2. James 4:2-3 (NIV).
3. Matthew 21:22 (NIV).
4. Matthew 9:29 (NIV).

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  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.
  
  * * * * * * 
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  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
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Post  Admin on Sat 08 Feb 2014, 12:25 am

Today's Daily Encounter

The Power of One  

"I [God] sought for a man [person] among them who would
make a wall, and stand in the gap before Me on behalf
of the land, that I should not destroy it; but I found
no one."1

Have you ever felt helpless in light of the seemingly
overwhelming problems we face in today's world--either
at home or abroad? The truth of the matter, however, is
that one person can make a world of difference to at
least one other person and, more often than not, to a
host of other persons.

Some time ago a friend sent the following anonymous
poem to me. I'd like to share it with you today.

    One song can spark a moment,
    One flower can wake the dream.
    One tree can start a forest,
    One bird can herald spring.
    One smile begins a friendship,
    One handclasp lifts a soul.
    One star can guide a ship at sea,
    One word can frame the goal.
    One vote can change a nation,
    One sunbeam can light a room.
    One candle can wipe out darkness,
    One laugh will conquer gloom.
    One step must start each journey,
    One word must start each prayer.
    One hope will raise our spirits,
    One touch can show you care.
    One voice can speak with wisdom,
    One heart can know what's true.
    One life can make the difference,
    You see it's up to YOU!

As another has said, "All the darkness in the world
cannot extinguish the light of one small candle." And
as Edward Everett Hale so eloquently said, "I am only
one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but
still I can do something; and because I cannot do
everything, I will not refuse to do something that I
can do."Don't ever forget how very important you are in
your world and remember too, that "One person is very
important to God, too." Most of his work on earth has
been started by one person. God is always looking for
people who will do his work on earth. Will you be the
one he is looking for today?

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, I'm available. I want to
say yes to You today and be one You are looking for.
Please use me to be a part of Your plans in what You
are doing in the world in which I live. Please show me
where I can begin. Thank You for hearing and answering
my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Ezekiel 22:30 (NKJV).

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Post  Admin on Thu 06 Feb 2014, 11:38 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Hornet Persuasion  

"I [God] will send the hornet ahead of you to drive the
Hivites, Canaanites and Hittites out of your way."1

In much younger days I used to play a guitar (long
before they became as popular as they are today) and
sing. One of my favorite songs was the "Hornet Song"
that went something like the following:

When the Canaanites hardened their hearts against God,
And grieved Him because of their sin,
God sent along hornets to bring them to terms,
And to help His own people to win.

Now the hornets persuaded them that it was best
To go quickly and not to go slow,
They didn't compel them to go 'gainst their will.
But they just made them willing to go.

If a nest of live hornets were brought to this room,
And the creatures allowed to go free,
You would not need urging to make yourself scarce,
You'd want to get out, don't you see!

When Jonah was sent to the work of the Lord,
The outlook was not very bright,
Why he never had done such a hard thing before,
So he backed out and ran off from the fight.

Now, the Lord sent a big fish to swallow him up,
The story I am sure you all know,
God didn't compel him to go 'gainst his will,
But He just made him willing to go.

Chorus:
God doesn't compel us to go, oh, no!
He never compels us to go,
God does not compel us to go 'gainst our will,
But He just makes us willing to go.

So here I am today--many years hence--doing with my
life what I believe God wants me to do--and finding it
incredibly fulfilling. "God's hornets" for me involved
an accident on a construction site that put me in the
hospital for a few days and out of work for a few weeks
while recuperating. God had to put me flat on my back
so I would stop and hear what he had been trying to get
me to hear for about three years. While in the hospital
I "heard" God's call--loud and clear--and "knew that I
knew that I knew" what I needed to do. That was to go
back to school and train for a lifetime of Christian
ministry. How thankful I am today for the "hornets" God
has sent into my life on several other occasions as
well.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You that your call
to each one of us is persistent, so please give me
hearing ears and a listening heart to hear you call
that I will know without a doubt that I am fulfilling
my God-given life purpose to the very best of my
ability. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Exodus 23: 28 (NIV).

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Post  Admin on Wed 05 Feb 2014, 10:05 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
I Respectfully Disagree With You  

"Has God said?"1

I was recently discussing the subject of homosexuality
with a person who claims to believe in God, but when I
shared with her what God's Word has to say about this
subject, she said, "I respectfully disagree with you."

The fact is, however, she wasn't disagreeing with me,
she was disagreeing with God's Word, the Bible, and to
disagree with the Bible, is to disagree with God. Quite
a superior stand to take! Putting one's self above God
is an insidious and ultimately self-destructive stand
to take.

Doing this is precisely the essence of sin and is how
sin entered the human race through Adam and Eve, the
first man and woman. God had given both total freedom
to eat of every fruit in the Garden of Eden except for
just one fruit. This was a test and an opportunity for
them to choose to follow God or to oppose him. When
Satan, the devil, disguised as a serpent, came to tempt
Adam and Eve, in referring to the forbidden fruit, he
said to Eve, "Has God said?" 

And then extended to Eve a part truth in order to
deceive her. He said to her, "If you eat of the
forbidden fruit, you will be as the gods knowing the
difference between good and evil." This was the part
truth, but what Satan didn't say was that if she ate of
the forbidden fruit, she would be forever confirmed in
a state of sin/evil which would cause her to be
separated from God. Sadly, Eve bought into the lie,
took of the forbidden fruit, ate it and shared it with
Adam, and he ignored God's directive too. 

So Eve set herself up as the judge between God and
Satan. In doing this, she fell for the trap, ate of the
forbidden fruit as did Adam, and in doing so they
brought sin into the human race. In essence Adam and
Eve were, through their actions, saying to God, "I
respectfully disagree with you."

So when it comes to issues such as homosexuality, gay
marriage, and many other moral issues, has God said?
Indeed he has--very clearly in his Word. Whether it be
by an individual, a church, a denomination, or a
country--we oppose God's Word and God's instructions to
our peril! The reality is that while God loves all
sinners, He hates sin because it is so totally
destructive of those whom he loves, and that is you and
me. It is also destructive of families and entire
nations. 

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please give me a genuine
love for, and an appreciation of, Your Word as found in
the Bible, knowing that Your Word is always truth and
Your directions for all of life--for this life and
preparing us for life beyond the grave in eternity.
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Genesis 3:1 (KJV).

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Today's Daily Encounter

Preach the Word  

"I solemnly urge you in the presence of God and Christ
Jesus, who will someday judge the living and the dead
when he appears to set up his Kingdom: Preach the word
of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or
not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your
people with good teaching. For a time is coming when
people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome
teaching. They will follow their own desires and will
look for teachers who will tell them whatever their
itching ears want to hear. They will reject the truth
and chase after myths."1

In August of last year, California Governor Brown
signed the Transgender Student Bill which makes the
state of California the first state to allow students
from grade school through high school access whichever
restroom and locker room they want--regardless of their
birth gender. And what, pray tell me, does this do for
the privacy of straight boys and girls? And imagine how
this will be open to abuse by non-discretionary teenage
boys with raging hormones? And how are parents going to
protect their children from this absurdity? It is a
further step in the ever-increasing moral decay of our
ever- sickening political correct society. See
http://tinyurl.com/k6xbdvn for more details.

What amazes me in our society today is that liberal
groups such as the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and
transgender), the PC (politically correct) people, the
ACLU (American Civil Liberty Union), anti-Christian and
other like-minded liberal groups push and push and push
until their personal desires, their perceived rights,
and activities are not only accepted but given full
approval regardless of their agenda so that to speak
out against them one can be sued for a so-called hate
crime.

But where is the voice of the Church? Have we allowed
Political Correctness (which more often than not is
anything but correct) to silence us? Leaders are called
to "preach the Word;" that is, the Word of God.

To be genuine Christians and believers in God, we need
to love that which God loves and hate that which God
hates. God loves all people. He loves that which is
righteous, that which is just, that which is true, and
that which is wholesome. At the same time God hates all
sin and all evil because it destroys those whom he
loves; that is you, me, and all people.

We are called to take a stand for our Christian faith.
As God's Word says, "Be on your guard; stand firm in
the faith; be courageous; be strong. Do everything in
love."2

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You for Your Word,
the Bible, that gives instructions for life so that all
who live according to Your Word--and in harmony with
your will--will learn how to fully live and fully love.
Help me always to so live. Thank You for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus's name, amen."

1. 2 Timothy 4:1-4 (NLT).
2. 1 Corinthians 16:13-14 (NIV). 

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  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
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  ACTS International.

Today's Daily Encounter

Trapped in a Pile of Mud  

"When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he
already had been in that condition a long time, He said
to him, "Do you want to be made well?"1

A Daily Encounter subscriber shares his struggle
saying, "My life is trapped in a pile of mud … down
under the ocean."

"Dear Friend," I replied, "I am saddened to hear that
you feel so downcast. You are certainly not alone in
your struggle. For many, life is a struggle, a
disappointment; or depressing. Speaking personally, I
came from a very dysfunctional family background, felt
rejected by my father, was extremely insecure in
younger days, plus, because of my unresolved personal
issues (damaged emotions), my first marriage was a
disaster. Furthermore, because of my family background
where love for me in my subconscious mind meant feeling
rejected and being hurt, I was afraid to love and knew
that if I didn't get the help I needed, I would be
running from love for the rest of my life. 

"However, with the support of good friends, in-depth
professional counseling, and by the grace God, I have
survived, and life for me these days has never been
more fulfilling. My recovery, however, didn't happen
overnight. It took determination, a steadfast
commitment to "being made well," and lots of help. Note
that Jesus didn't say to the crippled man, "Do you wish
to be made well? It was, "Do you want to be made well?"
To be made well, we need to want it badly enough to
take full responsibility and do everything we need to
do in order to be made well. The half-hearted never
make it.

"Once you work through and resolve your pain, one of
the most important things you can do is to 'invest your
pain' as it were; by learning how to overcome, and then
by becoming a wounded healer to support others in their
recovery. I am quick to admit that if there is any
quality and depth in the ministry that has been
entrusted to me today, most of it has come out of my
years of personal struggle and learning how to
overcome. 

"I encourage you to pray that God will reveal to you
the pathway for your healing and recovery; that He will
lead you to find the help you need to fully recover,
and that He will then use you to become a fellow
wounded healer. To find a highly qualified Christian
professional counselor, if you live in the U.S. or
Canada, I suggest that you call the office of the
Narramore Christian Foundation at 1-800-477-5893, and
press '1' for Dianne, and she should be able to give
you the contact information for a counselor or two in
your area.

"True, counseling can be expensive, but in many ways
some of us can't afford not to receive it. For many
months I worked two jobs at once--one in the daytime
and the other at night--to pay for the counseling I
needed.

"For today's suggested prayer I encourage you pray the
following simple prayer at the beginning of every day
for the rest of your life: 'Dear God, again today I
commit and trust my life and way to You. Please help me
to become the person you want me to be, and please use
me to be 'as Jesus' in some way to every life I have
contact with today. Thank You for hearing and answering
my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen.'

"I have prayed this prayer every day since my youth and
plan to keep praying it every day for the rest of my
life. I hope that you will too. Given time and asking
God to help you find the help you need to 'get out of
the mud,' you will find that it will help you
tremendously as long as you pray it consistently and
sincerely.

"Furthermore, for a starting point, if you have never
accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior knowing that your
sins are forgiven by God, be sure to read the article,
'How to Be Sure You're a Real Christian' at:
www.actsweb.org/christian. I'm sure, too, that some of
the articles online at:
www.actsweb.org/articles/Solutions.php will be a help.
And I suggest that you read the book, You Can't Fly
With a Broken Wing. This book was written out of my
overcoming life's struggles, and can be purchased on
sale at: http://actscom.com/store."

1. John 5:6 (NKJV).

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Post  Admin on Fri 31 Jan 2014, 9:57 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Lessons From Eagles  

"Dear brothers and sisters, whenever trouble comes your
way, let it be an opportunity for joy. For when your
faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.
So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully
developed, you will be strong in character and ready
for anything."1

"Though many of us have seen pictures of a huge eagle's
nest high in the branches of a tree or in the crag of a
cliff, few of us have gotten a glimpse inside. When a
mother eagle builds her nest she starts with thorns,
broken branches, sharp rocks, and a number of other
items that seem entirely unsuitable for the project.
But then she lines the nest with a thick padding of
wool, feathers, and fur from animals she has killed,
making it soft and comfortable for the eggs. 

"By the time the growing birds reach flying age, the
comfort of the nest and the luxury of free meals makes
them quite reluctant to leave. That's when the mother
eagle begins stirring up the nest. With her strong
talons she begins pulling up the thick carpet of fur
and feathers, bringing the sharp rocks and branches to
the surface. As more of the bedding gets plucked up,
the nest becomes more uncomfortable for the young
eagles. Eventually, this and other urgings prompt the
growing eagles to leave their once-comfortable abode
and move on to more mature behavior."2 

Yesterday we implied that motivation comes from
within--that only we can motivate ourselves. When it
comes to growth, however, there is another motivator to
help get us motivated--and that is pain that is either
caused or allowed by God. Like the mother eagle
"motivating" her eaglets to launch out to grow towards
their full potential, pain and troubles in our life can
be "God's wake-up call" to "stir up our nest," to
motivate us to move us out of our comfort zone, and
grow towards our God-given potential to become all that
he envisioned for us to be and to do all that he wants
us to do. 

However, it's best to get smart. If we choose to move
"out of our comfort zone nest" and become motivated
about and involved in God's work, we may avoid some
prickly thorns that God may need to send into our life
to stir us out of our nest. 

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, in all the trials and
troubles You allow to come into my life, please help me
use these as an opportunity to grow so that I will
become 'strong in character and ready for anything.'
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen." 

1. James 1:2-4 (NLT). 
2. Today in the Word, June 11, 1989

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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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  interested friends. Donations can be sent at: 
  http://www.actscom.com
  
  ACTS International
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  U.S.A.
  
  Phone: 949-940-9050  
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Post  Admin on Thu 30 Jan 2014, 10:33 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Do You Want to Be Made Whole?  

"Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity
thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there, and
knew that he already had been in that condition a long
time, He said to him, 'Do you want to be made well
[whole]?'"1

If I were to ask you if you want to be made whole, I'm
sure you would say yes. But what does it mean to be
whole? Simply put, it means to become a whole person
especially in mind and spirit; that is, to become
emotionally well, and spiritually well. Quite a
challenge to be sure.

As long as we live in our human body we will be subject
to sickness and disease. However, the more whole we
become emotionally and spiritually, the healthier we
are more likely to be physically. Unresolved spiritual
and/or emotional issues make us much more susceptible
to illnesses of all kinds. 

For instance, a person whose life is riddled with guilt
because of unconfessed sin, or is nursing a grudge and
refusing to forgive someone who has hurt him or her is
more than likely to get sick physically and/or
mentally. Many an ulcer, for example, is caused not so
much by what we are eating but by what is eating us on
the inside. And when I repress super-charged negative
emotions, as John Powell puts it, "My stomach keeps
score."

While the principle for being made well/whole is
simple, the process is anything but simple. That is, if
we want to be made well/whole, we need to resolve all
past hurts, forgive anyone and everybody who has ever
hurt us, face and resolve every buried negative
emotion, deal with and resolve any unconfessed sin, and
make our life right with God.

Remember, too, there is a world of difference between a
want and a wish. To be made well/whole takes total
commitment, personal honesty, and determination. The
half-hearted never make it. They may wish to get well
but they don't want it badly enough to be willing to
pay the price of doing what it takes to be made
well/whole.

Jesus' invitation is still available. Receiving the
answer is up to each one of us. Do you truly want to be
made whole/well? For only to the degree that we are
made whole will our lifestyle, our behavior and
actions, our manner of living, and our relationships be
wholesome.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to
understand fully what it means and what it takes to be
made whole, and give me the courage and will to do what
I need to do in order to be made whole. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's
name, amen."

1. John 5:5-6 (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.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  
  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
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Post  Admin on Wed 29 Jan 2014, 7:55 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

No Greater Love  

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

Gregory Robertson, a parachute safety and training
adviser and a veteran of several hundred parachute
jumps, followed six other sky divers out of a plane two
miles above the ground.

At 1¾ miles the six attempted to link hands. One of the
divers, Debbie Williams, accidentally collided with one
of the other skydivers and knocked herself unconscious.
Seeing her plight, Robertson tucked his arms to his
sides and, using his shoulders to steer himself, went
after Debbie. Plunging downward at 200 miles per hour,
he was able to catch her. Maneuvering her into a
sitting position, Robertson yanked her rip cord. They
were at 2,700 feet! At 2,000 feet he opened his own
chute. Ten seconds later he would have slammed into the
ground.

As Jesus said, there is no greater love than someone
being willing to give or even risk his or her own life
to save another's. But God's love for us is even
greater. As the Bible says, "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."2

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, because You loved me
enough to die for me, help me love You enough to live
for You every day for the rest of my life. Please use
me to be a vital part of what You are doing in the
world today to save those who are plummeting toward
eternal death without Christ. Thank You for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name,
amen."

1. John 15:13.
2. 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.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  
  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
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Post  Admin on Tue 28 Jan 2014, 3:45 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Report Card  

"For we must all appear before the judgment seat of
Christ."1

Report cards can make students nervous when having to
give a less than desirable report to their parents. I
received a report card from one of my sons when he was
13. It read:

    Dad's Report Card
    Love: A
    Patience: A
    Understanding: A
    Intelligence: A
    Sense of humor: A
    Helpfulness: A
    Kindness: A
    Wisdom: A
    Allowances: C-

It was a birthday card, the inside of which read:
"Let's see if we can't bring that last grade up a bit,
Dad!"

Jokes aside, I wonder if we wouldn't be better parents
if we were regularly graded by our kids!

Whenever there is accountability with responsibility
the results are usually more effective. For example, in
ancient Rome when the scaffolding was removed from a
completed Roman arch, the law required the engineer who
built it to test its strength by standing beneath it.

The engineer knew his life depended on the quality of
his work. Thus, it is no accident that Roman arches
have survived for hundreds of years!

Perhaps it would be wise to remind ourselves that each
of us is accountable and eventually will stand before
God to give an account of how we have lived and served
God while here on earth. May each of us hear the Savior
say, "Well done good and faithful servant. Enter into
the joy of your Lord."

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, grant that when my works
are tested, that they won't burn up as wood, hay and
stubble, but will, by Your grace, be as pure gold.
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen." 

1. 2 Corinthians 5:10.

<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.

Today's Daily Encounter

Discovering God's Will for Your Life  

"I take joy in doing your will, my God, for your
instructions are written on my heart."1

A Daily Encounter reader asks, "How does one know that
God is speaking to him or her? I am very confused
because I do not know what God wants me to do with my
life."

In younger days I used to struggle with the same
question; that is, how can I know the will of God for
my life? The following comes from what I learned:

First, and most important, is that it is always God's
will for us to put God first in our lives and to live
in harmony with what His Word, the Bible, teaches.

Second, ask God to help you discover what your
God-given life purpose is, and then do what is
necessary to fulfill this purpose. This will be
achieved by developing and using your God-given natural
gifts and talents to serve Him. Realize, too, that we
serve God by serving/helping people.

Third, when fulfilling the above, you will enjoy and
find fulfillment in the work/service (either paid or
volunteer) that you do. Referring to Jesus, David, the
Psalmist, wrote: "I take joy in doing your will, my
God." When we live in harmony with and do the will of
God, we, too, will find joy and fulfillment.

Fourth, unless we have a "specific call" from God for a
specific task such as being a missionary (or other
ministry), we can do any of a number of things and
still be doing God's will. For instance, picture God's
will as traveling on a "train" that will take you to
heaven when your life on earth is ended. While God is
in charge of that train, we have all the freedom to
move around in that train, and be involved in varied
activities using our abilities to serve others. Should
God be calling you to a specific task, it will be much
like what Oswald Chambers once said: "The call of God
is like the call of the sea to a sailor." That is, a
man who senses the call of the sea, will never rest
until he launches out to sea to answer that inner
urging. For more details on the call of God, see the
article, "Baffling Call of God," online at:
http://tinyurl.com/callofGod.

Fifth, realize that God is not co-dependent. He will
give wisdom and guidance if we ask Him to (see Proverbs
3:5-6), but He doesn't make our decisions for us. So
don't wait for a special vision, just put to use the
talents you have in serving others through your local
church, a para-church organization, with a volunteer
service organization, through visiting the sick or
shut-ins, helping a neighbor, or just in one or more of
normal, everyday activities.

Sixth, every morning pray and commit and trust your
life and way to God and trust Him to lead you in the
way that is best for you to go. I have prayed this
prayer almost every day since my youth and, as I look
back, can see how God has answered this prayer in so
many ways that I never would have dreamed possible.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to discover
my God-given life purpose, to live in harmony with Your
will, and to develop and use my God-given gifts and
talents in a way that will best serve You and fulfill
Your purpose for my life--and therein find joy and
fulfillment. Thank You for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully in Jesus's name, amen."

1. Psalm 40:8 (NLT). 

<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
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Post  Admin on Sun 26 Jan 2014, 1:10 am

Today's Daily Encounter

Words  

"A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a
setting of silver."1

I love words. With words we can move people to laugh,
to cry, to love us or to hate us. With words we can
inspire some to noble deeds of kindness, or if we are
so inclined, we can persuade others to dastardly deeds
of violence and evil.

I love one-liners too. They can make powerful
statements. I've been collecting them for years from
various sources. I wish I knew who said each one; some
I do, but unfortunately many I don't. I trust the
following will be as enriching to you as they have been
and are to me.

"The tragedy in life," said Albert Schweitzer, "is not
that we die, but rather, what dies inside a man while
he lives."

"The unattended garden," wrote A.W. Tozer, "will soon
be overrun with weeds; the heart that fails to
cultivate truth and root out error, will shortly be a
theological wilderness."

Abraham Lincoln said, "The best thing about the future
is that it comes only one day at a time."

A Chinese proverb says, "The longest journey begins
with the first step." And another, "Dig your well
before you're thirsty." "If one stays too long in his
shell, he'll wind up nuts."

"When you have a lot of rough edges, you're easy to get
hold of but hard to embrace."

"People don't care how much you know until they know
how much you care."

"To have a healthy sense of self-worth you don't have
to be the best. Just be your best."

Winston Churchill wisely observed that opposition can
be a healthy thing saying: "Kites rise against, not
with the wind." 

"If you resent it, don't do it; if you do it, don't
resent it."

Ivy Baker Priest said, "The world is round, and the
place which may seem like an end may also be only the
beginning." 

And finally, "The way we treat people is the way we
treat God."

Suggested prayer: "Thank You God for Your words in Your
Word. Like David, help me to hide Your Word in my heart
so I won't sin against You. And grant that my words
will be 'like apples of gold in settings of silver.'
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen." 

1. Proverbs 25:11 (RSV).

<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 23 Jan 2014, 10:33 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Flack Attacks  

"Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes
minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I
was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked. I have been
in danger from bandits, in danger from my own
countrymen, in danger from Gentiles ... and in danger
from false brothers."1

Flack is a normal part of front-line action. Whenever a
person invests his or her life in a worthwhile cause
and does a good job, especially if he or she doesn't
follow the party line, is not acting in a "politically
correct" manner, or swims against the tide of current
thought, he or she will inevitably become a target for
criticism from those who feel threatened or are in some
way jealous. The Apostle Paul's life is a prime
example.

The point is, flack is a part of the price of
leadership. If we don't want flack, all we need to do
is to stay a part of the status quo, don't rock the
boat, be politically correct, or stay at home. But
safety is not the way of true success. As one poet
wrote:

    I would rather stumble a thousand times 
    Attempting to reach a goal, 
    Than to sit in a crowd 
    In my weather-proof shroud, 
    A shriveled and self-satisfied soul. 
    I would rather be doing and daring 
    All of my error-filled days, 
    Than watching and waiting, and dying 
    Smug in my perfect ways. 
    I would rather wonder and blunder, 
    Stumbling blindly ahead, 
    Than for safety's sake 
    Lest I make a mistake 
    Be sure, be safe, be dead.

                        - Author Unknown

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please give me a passion
to live for and serve You. Help me always to take a
stand for all that Your Word, the Bible, teaches. And
please give me the courage to not shrink back because
of the attacks of those who oppose truth and Your work.
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen." 

1. 2 Corinthians 11:24-26 (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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Post  Admin on Wed 22 Jan 2014, 4:47 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

The Person God Uses  

"And I sought for a man among them that should make up
the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land,
that I should not destroy it: but I found none."1

"Down the streets of Portsmouth, two hundred years ago,
walked a sailor with one arm, one eye, a persistent
state of nerves, and unable to tread a ship's deck
without being seasick. Indeed he would probably have
been in a home for incurables, were not his name
Admiral Lord Nelson. The man's spirit drove the flesh.
The point is, when weighing the characteristics of a
leader, remember a stout spirit can drive a weak body a
long way."2

More than two thousand years ago God informed Ezekiel,
the prophet, that he was looking for a man to "stand in
the gap" to save the land. God, today, is still looking
for men and women who will stand in the gap to help
bring people to Jesus, for without him perishing souls
are lost forever. God uses ordinary people to fulfill
his goals on earth--the major qualification is not our
strength but having a stout spirit and being available
for God to use.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, in spite of my
inadequacies, I come to You and am available for
service. Please make me usable and use me to stand in
the gap to help bring the lost to Jesus. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's
name, amen." 

NOTE: For simple helps so you, too, can "stand in the
gap," please consider joining with ACTS as a People
Power for Jesus Partner. There is absolutely no charge
to join. See http://www.actsweb.org/people_power/.

1. Ezekiel 22:30. 
2. Lt. General Ira C. Eaker.

<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.

Today's Daily Encounter

Creative Adversity  

"But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes
on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and
in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the
earth."1

In 1832, French engineer Ferdinand Marie de Lesseps was
traveling on the Mediterranean Sea. One of the other
passengers (on the ship he was on) came down with a
contagious disease and the ship was quarantined.
Lesseps became very frustrated. To help kill time he
read the memoirs of Charles le Pere who had considered
the feasibility of building a canal from the
Mediterranean to the Red Sea. In 1869 the Suez Canal
was completed. It was constructed following the design
by and under the leadership of Lesseps.

It was during that quarantine thirty-seven years
earlier that the plan for the Suez Canal was germinated
and conceived by Ferdinand Marie de Lesseps. The world
has reaped the benefit ever since.

Probably more often than we realize, God uses adversity
to help us grow, to motivate us to find creative
solutions to life's problems, or to further his work.
For example, the early Christians didn't fulfill
Christ's commission to move out of Jerusalem with the
gospel to the ends of the earth until the Church faced
persecution. They were forced to move to the ends of
the earth.

This principle has been true in my life too. Just about
every major change in my life for the better has been
the result of some kind of setback or adversity.

So, every time adversity comes into your life, may I
suggest that you embrace it, and ask God what he is
saying or seeking you to learn or do through it.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, when facing a setback, or
enduring a loss, a disappointment, or a trial, help me
to 'hear' what You are saying to me through this
experience and how You want to use it in my life for
Your glory. Thank You for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen." 

1. Acts 1:8 (NIV)

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Post  Admin on Mon 20 Jan 2014, 8:06 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
The Search for Significance  

"Then he [Jesus] said to them, 'Watch out! Be on your
guard against all kinds of greed; a man's life does not
consist in the abundance of his possessions.'"1

Not all by any means, but most of the motivational
books and lectures that I have read and heard pretty
much measure success in terms of wealth and material
gain. For example, businessmen and women who are
considered successful are those who have built an
effective business that has become very profitable
financially. Most of these "successful" people have
been totally committed to and have invested their life
in achieving their goal of success.

However, many or at least some of these people after
they have reached the pinnacle of success in terms of
the world's measure of success ask themselves, "Is this
all there is to life?" and wonder, "What have I
achieved with my life that will leave anything of
lasting value after I have gone? What, if anything,
have I contributed to the betterment of mankind?" In
other words, "What have I done of lasting
significance?"

The reality is that one can achieve success and receive
many accolades and obtain wide recognition, and yet not
have achieved anything of lasting significance. On the
other hand, if one has invested his or her life in
things of lasting value, he or she is the one who has
achieved real success and whose life is truly
significant--with or without any accolades,
recognition, or monetary gain. 

In other words I can be "outwardly successful" but not
have any significance, but if I have achieved
significance I will be truly successful. 

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to become
significant by my life's priorities, in the way I
invest my life, and in the worthwhile goals I
achieve--and be genuinely successful by Your standards.
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen." 

1. Luke 12:15 (NIV).

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Post  Admin on Fri 17 Jan 2014, 11:13 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Strength out of Weakness  

"My grace is sufficient for you, for my strength is
made perfect in weakness."1

In his book, Confidence, Alan Loy McGinnis talks about
a famous study entitled "Cradles of Eminence" by Victor
and Mildred Goertzel, in which the family backgrounds
of 300 highly successful people were studied.

Many of the names of those in the study were well-known
to most of us--including Franklin D. Roosevelt, Helen
Keller, Winston Churchill, Albert Schweitzer, Gandhi,
and Einstein--all of whom were brilliant in their field
of expertise.

The results of this study are both surprising and
encouraging for many of us who came from a less than
desirable home life. For example: "Three-quarters of
the children were troubled either by poverty, by a
broken home, or by rejecting, over-possessive or
dominating parents.

"Seventy-four of 85 writers of fiction or drama and 16
of the 20 poets came from homes where, as children,
they saw tense psychological drama played out by their
parents.

"Physical handicaps such as blindness, deafness, or
crippled limbs characterized over one-quarter of the
sample."

These people who had confidence in their abilities and
put them to creative use had more weaknesses and
handicaps than many who have all of their faculties
intact and who had a reasonably good home life
background. So, what made the difference? Probably by
compensating for their weaknesses they excelled in
other areas.

One man reported, "What has influenced my life more
than any other single thing has been my stammer. Had I
not stammered I would probably have gone to Cambridge
as my brothers did, perhaps have become a don and every
now and then published a dreary book about French
literature." The speaker who stammered until his death
was W. Somerset Maugham, as he looked back on his life
at age 86.

"By then he had become a world-renowned author of more
than 20 books, 30 plays, and scores of essays and short
stories."

It's not what we have or don't have that matters in
life but what we do with what we have. All God expects
of us is that we don't allow our past to determine our
future, and that with his help we use what we have to
the best of our ability.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You for the gifts
You have given to me, no matter how small or large,
help me to develop and use them to my total God-given
potential, and to use them for Your glory. Thank You
for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in
Jesus's name, amen." 

1. 2 Corinthians 12:9.

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Post  Admin on Thu 16 Jan 2014, 1:10 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

On Being a Positive Realist  

"Then he [Jesus] touched their eyes and said,
'According to your faith will it be done to you,' and
their sight was restored."1

I like to think I am a positive realist. For example,
if I've been hit by a Mac truck all the positive
thinking in the world won't take away the pain. But if
I am a positive realist, I will acknowledge the fact
that I've been hurt real bad, but with God's help and
the best medical help I can find I will do all in my
power to overcome what has happened to me.

One's thinking does make a big difference. If you keep
telling yourself and believing you will overcome,
chances are you will make great gains much faster than
if you keep telling yourself all is lost.

As Baudjuin said, "To be ambitious for wealth, and yet
always expecting to be poor; to be always doubting your
ability to get what you long for, is like trying to
reach east by traveling west. There is no philosophy
which will help man to succeed when he is always
doubting his ability to do so, and thus attracting
failure. No matter how hard you work for success, if
your thoughts are saturated with the fear of failure,
it will kill your efforts, neutralize your endeavors,
and make success impossible."

It is still true, "According to your faith it will be
done to you."

Suggested Prayer: "Dear God, please give me the faith
to overcome every setback, problem, and challenge that
I am facing in my life. With Your help, grant that I
will become a better man/woman as a result of having
faced and overcome these trials. Thank You for hearing
and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name,
amen." 

1. Matthew 9:29-30.

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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
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  * * * * * * * 
 
  Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
 When copying or forwarding include the following: 
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Today's Daily Encounter
Faithfulness  

The Apostle Paul, at life's end, said, "I have fought a
good fight. I have finished the course. I have kept the
faith."1

One of my favorite quotes, which I like to repeat from
time to time, is from Theodore Roosevelt who said: "It
is not the critic who counts; not the man who points
out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of
deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs
to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is
marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives
valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again;
who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions;
who spends himself in a worthy cause; who, at the best,
if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so
that his place shall never be with those timid souls
who know neither victory or defeat."2

Not long before a close friend of mine died of cancer,
I asked him what it felt like to be forty-four and in
his predicament. Among a number of things he said, "I
feel angry because there was so much more I wanted to
do with life. I feel bad about being so busy and not
spending more time with my family." And then, after a
thoughtful pause he said, "I can't help but wonder what
I have done with my life that has been truly
worthwhile."

His words were sobering and I know that when I get to
the end of my journey and stand before the Savior, I
want to know that I have invested my life wisely for
eternity and have earned the Savior's welcome words,
"Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter into the
joy of your Lord."

Whether we live for forty, eighty, or a hundred years,
our time here on earth is but a drop in the ocean
compared to eternity. And as Amy Carmichael said, "We
have all eternity to celebrate the victories, but only
a few short hours to fight and win the battles." So,
let's keep daring greatly for God!

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, in glad surrender I yield
my life totally to You. Help me to live always for You
and invest my life wisely in eternity by being a part
of what You are doing in the world today. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's
name, amen." 

1. 2 Timothy 4:7.
2. Theodore Roosevelt.

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