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Post  Admin on Wed 12 Jul 2017, 4:10 pm

Welcome to the Nugget

July 8, 2017

Giving Away my Peace
By Answers2Prayer 
  "Know God? Then you know peace. You don't always 'feel' that peace because you give it away by taking your eyes off the Prince of Peace!"

That was my tweet the other morning. And I firmly believed it. In fact, I left my prayer closet thanking God for His peace and for the fact that He had helped me learn to stop giving it away!
Then the "day" began to happen. And it was one of those days... 
It all started off when the nose pad on my glasses broke just before I needed to leave for work. Being extremely far-sighted, there was no way I could manage at work without my glasses, but with that little nose pad post poking into my nose, how would I be able to manage?
And I took my eyes off of Jesus and gave away my peace.
Things went downhill from there. Everything I touched ended up going--literally--"downhill"! We'll just say that the laws of gravity were definitely in effect as my cup slipped through my hands, dumping a freshly-made smoothie across my kitchen. Next the oatmeal pot slipped through my hands, dumping cooked cereal all over the stove top. I won't bore you with all the things that were affected by gravity, but suffice is to say, those gravitational laws were very much in effect all day, and since my hands seemed to be perpetually coated with some slippery substance, I can't even count how many messes I had to clean up. I will say, however, that the worst of them was when I dumped hot tea all over a patient...Let's just say it's not something you would wish to put on a resume...
I'm sure you can all relate, for though my day was filled with the kinds of annoyances that serve to put us in a bad mood, there was very likely a real disaster or two on your list of frustrations. Where is God in all of this? Why isn't He intervening? How will I ever make it through? 
Paul could also relate. He had a disastrous day as well, one that cumulated in a death sentence: "For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, regarding the affliction that happened to us in the province of Asia, that we were burdened excessively, beyond our strength, so that we despaired even of living. Indeed we felt as if the sentence of death had been passed against us..." (2 Cor 1:8-9a)
Unlike me, however, Paul didn't give away his peace. Instead, he goes on to say, "...we felt as if the sentence of death had been passed against us so that we would not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead." (vs. 9b) 
Paul had a purpose: To turn his focus to God. 
Did it work?
It must have, for Paul then says: "He delivered us from so great a risk of death, and he will deliver us. We have set our hope on him that he will deliver us yet again..." (vs. 10-11)
Though it was the worst of days, Paul had peace. He knew would God come through for them. 
As I look back over my frustrating day, I see God's hand all over it. My student jerry-rigged my glasses, providing me with a temporary solution. She offered to see my lunch-time patients so I could make the 45 minute trip to the occulist, and then I actually made the round trip in a record 30. A patient cancelled, allowing for charting time, and my son and his girlfriend helped with all my evening chores. Oh, and the patient who received the hot tea "bath"? She just "happened" to be a former patient of mine from years gone by. After razzing me a bit, she laughed it off. Though it seemed I was going it alone, God was right there, carrying me through. I could rely on the God of peace to deliver me yet again. 
Hey, did God allow so many frustrations so that I, like Paul, could say, "...we felt as if the sentence of death had been passed against us so that we would not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead." (2 Cor 1:9b)? 
Perhaps, for my eyes are certainly on Him today...Funny how the slippery hands and heavy gravitational pull don't seem to be quite as prevalent today...
Prayer: God, help me keep my eyes on You, so that no matter what happens today, I will keep Your peace! 
In His love,
Lyn


Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author -- "Aboard God's Train -- A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer", Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
 
Announcement:

Just how big is YOUR God? Join us on Thursday and Saturday next week for "How Big is Your God?" A mini-series by Lynona Gordon Chaffart
©Copyright 2011 Answers2Prayer | Matt 10:8 "Freely you have received, freely give."Welcome to the Nugget


July 8, 2017

Giving Away my Peace
By Answers2Prayer 
  "Know God? Then you know peace. You don't always 'feel' that peace because you give it away by taking your eyes off the Prince of Peace!"

That was my tweet the other morning. And I firmly believed it. In fact, I left my prayer closet thanking God for His peace and for the fact that He had helped me learn to stop giving it away!
Then the "day" began to happen. And it was one of those days... 
It all started off when the nose pad on my glasses broke just before I needed to leave for work. Being extremely far-sighted, there was no way I could manage at work without my glasses, but with that little nose pad post poking into my nose, how would I be able to manage?
And I took my eyes off of Jesus and gave away my peace.
Things went downhill from there. Everything I touched ended up going--literally--"downhill"! We'll just say that the laws of gravity were definitely in effect as my cup slipped through my hands, dumping a freshly-made smoothie across my kitchen. Next the oatmeal pot slipped through my hands, dumping cooked cereal all over the stove top. I won't bore you with all the things that were affected by gravity, but suffice is to say, those gravitational laws were very much in effect all day, and since my hands seemed to be perpetually coated with some slippery substance, I can't even count how many messes I had to clean up. I will say, however, that the worst of them was when I dumped hot tea all over a patient...Let's just say it's not something you would wish to put on a resume...
I'm sure you can all relate, for though my day was filled with the kinds of annoyances that serve to put us in a bad mood, there was very likely a real disaster or two on your list of frustrations. Where is God in all of this? Why isn't He intervening? How will I ever make it through? 
Paul could also relate. He had a disastrous day as well, one that cumulated in a death sentence: "For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, regarding the affliction that happened to us in the province of Asia, that we were burdened excessively, beyond our strength, so that we despaired even of living. Indeed we felt as if the sentence of death had been passed against us..." (2 Cor 1:8-9a)
Unlike me, however, Paul didn't give away his peace. Instead, he goes on to say, "...we felt as if the sentence of death had been passed against us so that we would not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead." (vs. 9b) 
Paul had a purpose: To turn his focus to God. 
Did it work?
It must have, for Paul then says: "He delivered us from so great a risk of death, and he will deliver us. We have set our hope on him that he will deliver us yet again..." (vs. 10-11)
Though it was the worst of days, Paul had peace. He knew would God come through for them. 
As I look back over my frustrating day, I see God's hand all over it. My student jerry-rigged my glasses, providing me with a temporary solution. She offered to see my lunch-time patients so I could make the 45 minute trip to the occulist, and then I actually made the round trip in a record 30. A patient cancelled, allowing for charting time, and my son and his girlfriend helped with all my evening chores. Oh, and the patient who received the hot tea "bath"? She just "happened" to be a former patient of mine from years gone by. After razzing me a bit, she laughed it off. Though it seemed I was going it alone, God was right there, carrying me through. I could rely on the God of peace to deliver me yet again. 
Hey, did God allow so many frustrations so that I, like Paul, could say, "...we felt as if the sentence of death had been passed against us so that we would not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead." (2 Cor 1:9b)? 
Perhaps, for my eyes are certainly on Him today...Funny how the slippery hands and heavy gravitational pull don't seem to be quite as prevalent today...
Prayer: God, help me keep my eyes on You, so that no matter what happens today, I will keep Your peace! 
In His love,
Lyn


Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author -- "Aboard God's Train -- A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer", Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
 
Announcement:

Just how big is YOUR God? Join us on Thursday and Saturday next week for "How Big is Your God?" A mini-series by Lynona Gordon Chaffart
©Copyright 2011 Answers2Prayer | Matt 10:8 "Freely you have received, freely give."Welcome to the Nugget


July 8, 2017

Giving Away my Peace
By Answers2Prayer 
  "Know God? Then you know peace. You don't always 'feel' that peace because you give it away by taking your eyes off the Prince of Peace!"

That was my tweet the other morning. And I firmly believed it. In fact, I left my prayer closet thanking God for His peace and for the fact that He had helped me learn to stop giving it away!
Then the "day" began to happen. And it was one of those days... 
It all started off when the nose pad on my glasses broke just before I needed to leave for work. Being extremely far-sighted, there was no way I could manage at work without my glasses, but with that little nose pad post poking into my nose, how would I be able to manage?
And I took my eyes off of Jesus and gave away my peace.
Things went downhill from there. Everything I touched ended up going--literally--"downhill"! We'll just say that the laws of gravity were definitely in effect as my cup slipped through my hands, dumping a freshly-made smoothie across my kitchen. Next the oatmeal pot slipped through my hands, dumping cooked cereal all over the stove top. I won't bore you with all the things that were affected by gravity, but suffice is to say, those gravitational laws were very much in effect all day, and since my hands seemed to be perpetually coated with some slippery substance, I can't even count how many messes I had to clean up. I will say, however, that the worst of them was when I dumped hot tea all over a patient...Let's just say it's not something you would wish to put on a resume...
I'm sure you can all relate, for though my day was filled with the kinds of annoyances that serve to put us in a bad mood, there was very likely a real disaster or two on your list of frustrations. Where is God in all of this? Why isn't He intervening? How will I ever make it through? 
Paul could also relate. He had a disastrous day as well, one that cumulated in a death sentence: "For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, regarding the affliction that happened to us in the province of Asia, that we were burdened excessively, beyond our strength, so that we despaired even of living. Indeed we felt as if the sentence of death had been passed against us..." (2 Cor 1:8-9a)
Unlike me, however, Paul didn't give away his peace. Instead, he goes on to say, "...we felt as if the sentence of death had been passed against us so that we would not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead." (vs. 9b) 
Paul had a purpose: To turn his focus to God. 
Did it work?
It must have, for Paul then says: "He delivered us from so great a risk of death, and he will deliver us. We have set our hope on him that he will deliver us yet again..." (vs. 10-11)
Though it was the worst of days, Paul had peace. He knew would God come through for them. 
As I look back over my frustrating day, I see God's hand all over it. My student jerry-rigged my glasses, providing me with a temporary solution. She offered to see my lunch-time patients so I could make the 45 minute trip to the occulist, and then I actually made the round trip in a record 30. A patient cancelled, allowing for charting time, and my son and his girlfriend helped with all my evening chores. Oh, and the patient who received the hot tea "bath"? She just "happened" to be a former patient of mine from years gone by. After razzing me a bit, she laughed it off. Though it seemed I was going it alone, God was right there, carrying me through. I could rely on the God of peace to deliver me yet again. 
Hey, did God allow so many frustrations so that I, like Paul, could say, "...we felt as if the sentence of death had been passed against us so that we would not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead." (2 Cor 1:9b)? 
Perhaps, for my eyes are certainly on Him today...Funny how the slippery hands and heavy gravitational pull don't seem to be quite as prevalent today...
Prayer: God, help me keep my eyes on You, so that no matter what happens today, I will keep Your peace! 
In His love,
Lyn


Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author -- "Aboard God's Train -- A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer", Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
 
Announcement:

Just how big is YOUR God? Join us on Thursday and Saturday next week for "How Big is Your God?" A mini-series by Lynona Gordon Chaffart
©Copyright 2011 Answers2Prayer | Matt 10:8 "Freely you have received, freely give."
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Post  Admin on Tue 11 Jul 2017, 12:29 am

Welcome to the Nugget


July 8, 2017

Giving Away my Peace
By Answers2Prayer 
  "Know God? Then you know peace. You don't always 'feel' that peace because you give it away by taking your eyes off the Prince of Peace!"

That was my tweet the other morning. And I firmly believed it. In fact, I left my prayer closet thanking God for His peace and for the fact that He had helped me learn to stop giving it away!

Then the "day" began to happen. And it was one of those days... 

It all started off when the nose pad on my glasses broke just before I needed to leave for work. Being extremely far-sighted, there was no way I could manage at work without my glasses, but with that little nose pad post poking into my nose, how would I be able to manage?

And I took my eyes off of Jesus and gave away my peace.

Things went downhill from there. Everything I touched ended up going--literally--"downhill"! We'll just say that the laws of gravity were definitely in effect as my cup slipped through my hands, dumping a freshly-made smoothie across my kitchen. Next the oatmeal pot slipped through my hands, dumping cooked cereal all over the stove top. I won't bore you with all the things that were affected by gravity, but suffice is to say, those gravitational laws were very much in effect all day, and since my hands seemed to be perpetually coated with some slippery substance, I can't even count how many messes I had to clean up. I will say, however, that the worst of them was when I dumped hot tea all over a patient...Let's just say it's not something you would wish to put on a resume...

I'm sure you can all relate, for though my day was filled with the kinds of annoyances that serve to put us in a bad mood, there was very likely a real disaster or two on your list of frustrations. Where is God in all of this? Why isn't He intervening? How will I ever make it through? 

Paul could also relate. He had a disastrous day as well, one that cumulated in a death sentence: "For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, regarding the affliction that happened to us in the province of Asia, that we were burdened excessively, beyond our strength, so that we despaired even of living. Indeed we felt as if the sentence of death had been passed against us..." (2 Cor 1:8-9a)

Unlike me, however, Paul didn't give away his peace. Instead, he goes on to say, "...we felt as if the sentence of death had been passed against us so that we would not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead." (vs. 9b) 

Paul had a purpose: To turn his focus to God. 

Did it work?

It must have, for Paul then says: "He delivered us from so great a risk of death, and he will deliver us. We have set our hope on him that he will deliver us yet again..." (vs. 10-11)

Though it was the worst of days, Paul had peace. He knew would God come through for them. 

As I look back over my frustrating day, I see God's hand all over it. My student jerry-rigged my glasses, providing me with a temporary solution. She offered to see my lunch-time patients so I could make the 45 minute trip to the occulist, and then I actually made the round trip in a record 30. A patient cancelled, allowing for charting time, and my son and his girlfriend helped with all my evening chores. Oh, and the patient who received the hot tea "bath"? She just "happened" to be a former patient of mine from years gone by. After razzing me a bit, she laughed it off. Though it seemed I was going it alone, God was right there, carrying me through. I could rely on the God of peace to deliver me yet again. 

Hey, did God allow so many frustrations so that I, like Paul, could say, "...we felt as if the sentence of death had been passed against us so that we would not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead." (2 Cor 1:9b)? 

Perhaps, for my eyes are certainly on Him today...Funny how the slippery hands and heavy gravitational pull don't seem to be quite as prevalent today...

Prayer: God, help me keep my eyes on You, so that no matter what happens today, I will keep Your peace! 

In His love,
Lyn


Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author -- "Aboard God's Train -- A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer", Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
 
Announcement:

Just how big is YOUR God? Join us on Thursday and Saturday next week for "How Big is Your God?" A mini-series by Lynona Gordon Chaffart
©Copyright 2011 Answers2Prayer | Matt 10:8 "Freely you have received, freely give."
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Post  Admin on Thu 06 Jul 2017, 10:02 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
July 6, 2017

Three Things we must do when our World Turns Dark

By Answers2Prayer 
  That short hour the other night without electricity reminded me how wimpy I had become. Back in Bolivia where I was born, electricity and water only lasted till noon. And we adjusted, thought of it as normal and never thought to complain.

"Honey!" I called to my hubby the other night, "the phone is dead."

"Everything is dead," he said. "The electricity went out."

You see, for this blind gal, the fact there are no lights is no big deal. But when the phone or the computer don't work...that's major stuff.

My lights went off recently in a different way. I witnessed one of my closest friend suffer with a sorrowful situation with her family. Adversity seemed to darken her life with no warning. And her heartache and worry became mine. We prayed together on the phone and we asked for God's intervention. As we did, God used the centurion's story to remind me of the three truths to cling to when darkness hovers:

Jesus is attentive to our own sorrow, to small and big details, as well as when we pray for others: 

"When Jesus had entered Capernaum, a centurion came to him, asking for help. 'Lord,' he said, 'my servant lies at home paralyzed and in terrible suffering.'" (Matthew 8:5)

If we turn to Jesus, place all that aches before Him and wait; we'll find He's willing to answer. 

"He said to him, 'I will go and heal him.' The centurion replied, 'Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed.'" (Matthew 8:8)

Jesus observes our level of trust, our belief and our faith:

"When Jesus heard this, he was astonished and said to those following him, 'I tell you the truth. I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith.'" (Matthew 8: 10)

How much faith will you have as you place all your requests before Jesus?

Janet Eckles

If this message resonated with you, please visit Janet's cyberspace home for more inspiration. 

Announcement:
Do you know any facebook fans? Why not invite them to visit Answers2Prayer on Facebook! This is their opportunity to discover that our Heavenly Father truly cares for them, and that Jesus is not only their Saviour by their friend as well!
©Copyright 2011 Answers2Prayer | Matt 10:8 "Freely you have received, freely give."
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Post  Admin on Tue 04 Jul 2017, 10:31 pm

Welcome to the Nugget


July 4, 2017

Shoe Boxes of my Mind



By Answers2Prayer Subscribe Unsubscribe Devotionals Contact us  "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another." (John 13:34) 

I was looking through some of the shoe boxes of my mind today. Those are the places where I store all of the wonderful moments of learning and loving that I have had in this life. One such memory is of a simple picture drawn for me by a 5th grade student when I was a very young substitute teacher. I lost the real picture in one of the several moves I have made over the years, but the picture is still there in one of the shoe boxes of my cluttered, middle-aged mind.

It was drawn in crayons and colored pencils. There were lovely, red, Fall trees, green grass, and flowers under a golden sun. Under it were written the words: "You are the best teacher I've ever had." Now the strange thing was that I had only been her teacher for one day and I would never teach in her classroom again. That was the life of a substitute teacher. You hardly ever got the same class twice. Still, I was young and idealistic. I believed in what the great educator Leo Buscaglia had said about using positive, caring, and encouraging words with your students. That day I had taken the opportunity to tell that young artist how great her English paper had been and that she should "Keep up the wonderful work!" As school ended that day she handed me the picture, smiled, and ran out to her bus. I kept that picture in a special folder on my dresser and in a special shoe box in my mind. I was amazed at how my one kind comment had meant so much to her, and I thanked God for giving me the wisdom to say it.

Now that I am old and idealistic I see that every caring word we say, every act of kindness we do, and every bit of love we share makes a difference in this world. God loves us all and God created us all for a purpose. We are to love each other and make this world a better place in our own special way. May you do so today. May you fill all of your days with love and kindness. 

May you fill all the shoe boxes of your mind with memories of joy.

By: Joseph J. Mazzella
 
Announcement:

The Illustrator and the Nugget have joined forces and are now on Facebook under the name Answers2Prayer. This group is dedicated to bringing people closer to our loving God through daily thought-provoking devotionals and inspirational stories.

Invite them to join us at by clicking here. They may either sign in or sign up, and once into their account, they can search for Answers2Prayer in the search bar (on the top right corner of the screen) and hit enter. Here they will find our new group, and they can click on "Join Group", hit "Confirm" and then enjoy daily encouragement.

As always, this is a free. Our goal is to help your friends and family make Jesus their focus!
©Copyright 2011 Answers2Prayer | Matt 10:8 "Freely you have received, freely give."
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Post  Admin on Mon 03 Jul 2017, 12:29 am

Welcome to the Nugget

July 1, 2017

Receiving Your Rachel
By Answers2Prayer   
 The story is recorded in Genesis 28 and 29. Jacob, fleeing his brother and far from home, received a vision of God (See Gen. 28:10-17), assuring him that God would: a) Give him the land of Canaan (vs. 13); b) Make him a mighty nation that would bless the world (vs. 14); c) Go with him and protect him (vs 15); and, d) One day bring him back to Canaan (vs. 15). Jacob then found himself in his Uncle Laban's household. He fell in love with Laban's younger daughter, Rachel, and willingly worked seven long, hard years to win her hand in marriage. On the day of his wedding, it must have seemed like his problems had finally turned around.

Until the morning after, that is, when he awoke to realize that he didn't married his beloved Rachel at all, but rather, her older sister, Leah!

What a dirty, nasty trick to play on someone. Why would this happen? Why would God even allow Laban to do such a thing? 

I have a good friend in Alberta who has suffered for years with chronic pain. In addition to this, she has been experiencing compounding health problems since the fall of 2015. She has battled an ongoing pneumonia that has taken away her voice, her endurance, and her ability to maintain her job. For several months of that time, she also battled angina. Throughout this, God promised her that her healing "is coming" and asked her to walk with Him in faith. The first bout of angina slowly waned, and she began to regain her voice, her strength and her endurance. Despite dealing with the death of her father in the midst of her recovery, she slowly built herself back up to nearly full-time work. That's when the second bout of angina struck her down. 

My friend's story is much like Jacob's. Just as Jacob received a vision of God in the midst of his initial trials, my friend was told by God that her healing was coming. Just like Jacob's life seemed to have been turning around, my friend was beginning to recover from her initial ordeal. In fact, we were already praising God for her healing. But just like Jacob would then receive the ultimate in deception right when he should have received the reward for his hard work, my friend was struck with and completely debilitated by that second bout of angina. 

I know all of you can relate to this, for this scenario is not foreign to any of us. Just as things seem to be settling down, something new strikes and we find ourselves worse off than before. I would be lying if I were to tell you that I am not shaken by these types of circumstances. In fact, they usually serve to thoroughly rock my faith, and I begin asking questions such as: "Why won't God heal me? Doesn't He love me? Have I done something to offend Him?" 

But has God really abandoned us to our troubles? Has He abandoned my friend? Did He abandon Jacob?

We don't yet know the outcome of my friend's story, nor of our own; but we do know the outcome of Jacob's story:

1. God worked something good out of Laban's deception. It was a result of the union with Leah, and not the union with the beloved Rachel, that both Levi and Judah were born. Levi would become the ancestral father of Moses and the entire priesthood, and Judah would become the ancestral father of King David, and later, Jesus Himself. It is yet another example of how God works good things out of bad situations: "And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them." (Rom. 8:28 NLT)

In the same way, God will work something beautiful out of the trickery of the devil in my friend's life and in your life as well, for, "God has made everything beautiful for its own time." (Eccl. 3:11 NLT), and "The Lord always keeps his promises; he is gracious in all he does." (Ps. 145:13 NLT). 

2. In the end, Jacob did receive Rachel as his wife, and he didn't even have to wait long: "A week after Jacob had married Leah, Laban gave him Rachel, too." (Gen. 29:28b NLT). Yes, he did have to work another seven years to pay her dowry; yet, despite Laban's filthy trickery, Jacob did receive the desire of his heart.

And you will as well! 

Are you suffering from illness? Financial difficulties? Loss of job? Family problems? Death in the family? Loss of your home? Whatever it may be, this is the "Leah" that the devil has thrown your way to shake your faith. It doesn't matter what circumstance dictates. It doesn't matter what kind of horrible label the professionals are giving your set of problems. Do not despair, your "Rachel"--the touch of God in your situation--is coming! 

So what should we do while we wait? 

We should do what Jacob did:

1. He didn't get angry at God; rather he directed his anger at the one who was responsible for the deception: "'What have you done to me?' Jacob raged at Laban. 'I worked seven years for Rachel! Why have you tricked me?'" (Gen. 29:15 NLT). In the same way, we should not get angry with God. Rather, we should get angry at the devil who is trying to discourage us. We must recognize it for what it is: A dirty trick, designed to shake your faith, for the devil truly prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour (See 1 Peter 5:8).

2. Jacob continued to patiently wait for Rachel: "So Jacob agreed to work seven more years."(Gen. 29:28a NLT). We must also stand firm and wait for God to come through. He will! He always does!

My friend's healing has begun. In fact, 4 days after this was written, she was given two new medications, and after just four weeks, there has been a marked improvement in her health overall. She will receive her "Rachel"...Her health will be returned to her, for God has promised it. The resolution to whatever circumstances you face right now is also coming. Hold on to God's promise in faith and wait patiently for Him to come through with your "Rachel"!

In His love,
Lyn


Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author -- "Aboard God's Train -- A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer", Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
 
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Post  Admin on Thu 29 Jun 2017, 10:18 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
June 29, 2017

BREXIT and All That! Part 3

By Answers2Prayer 
  In the concluding part of our series entitled "Brexit and all that", we shall cast the spotlight on a few more priceless benefits of being "in Christ"...

Family... 

"There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus." (Gal 3:28 NIV) 

Those who are God's children are now part of God's family called the Church. While there is a universal church, comprising of all God's children, the children of God also gather together to worship Him locally in a convenient place under the leadership of an anointed child of God (read Pastor). This constitutes the local church. While corporate worship is the primary motive of the local church, it is also binding on it to "build up and encourage one another" (I Thess 5:11/Eph 4:16/Rom 12:15), even while extending Christ-like love to those outside its portals. While on the subject, let it be said that spiritual bonds are stronger than the blood ties, for the former are eternal in nature, while the latter are limited to this side of Eternity only (Matt 12:46-50). 

The local church, in a way, is a silent miracle in and of itself. Therein, men from diverse backgrounds, with no pride whatsoever about their race, face or place of their upbringing, meet together with one common agenda: To experience their Heavenly Father's Grace and exercise His will (Acts 4:32-33). While on the subject, let me also state: never "exit" (unless there are some very, very compelling, valid reasons) from that Church by whose Ministry you were saved and baptized. There is a Sacred Covenant (in the eyes of the Lord) between you and those Church elders, that they would do all that is within their strength to further your spiritual welfare. On your part, you should co-operate with them in this regard (Heb 13:17). 


Fruit... 

"I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing." (John 15:5 ESV) 

Remarked a wise saint, "The Christian life is not my responsibility, but rather only a response to His ability"! Not only our right standing (read righteousness) with our Heavenly Father emanates from us being in Christ, but also all our good deeds of loving and caring for one another, both within and outside the Church. We will share both the Gospel and our personal testimonies (Acts 8:25), both within the Church, where our aim is in the transformation of the nominal souls for good; and outside the Church, where our aim is to deliver the unbelievers from sin. This will stem solely from our relationship with our Father, and not from our own finite strength (Zech. 4:6). We supply the will, Christ supplies the power! That's why the Apostle Paul notes in his epistle to the Galatian Churches: "It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me...." (Ga.l 2:20 ESV). Then again, it comes as no surprise that in the middle of his amazing, unparalleled Fruit-bearing Ministry that the Wise Apostle declares: "For I am the least of the apostles, unworthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me." (1 Cor. 15:9 ESV)

So there we are, dear friends. In the Christian realm, who we are actually depends on where we are and who is with us and in us! Say reader, are you "in Christ"? Hmmm...The privileges one has for being in Christ far outweigh the privileges the British might lose for opting out of the EU. So let's persevere in Christ!  

Prayer: Father, we are eternally grateful for having been rooted "in Christ". With Thy enablement, help us to spell out the benefits of being "in Christ" gracefully to those who are living without Him and bring them to your saving grace. In Jesus' Name. Amen.

Suresh Manoharan
An unworthy servant
J and SM Ministries
 
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Post  Admin on Tue 27 Jun 2017, 1:16 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
June 27, 2017
BREXIT and All That! Part 2

By Answers2Prayer 
  Continuing our series entitled "Brexit and all that", today we focus on a few more priceless benefits of being "in Christ"...
Father... 
"So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith..." (Gal. 3:26 NIV) 

Not only are we treated as "faultless" in the eyes of God when we are in Christ (remember the first part of our series?), but when we put our trust in the Saviour's atoning work on the Cross (John 1:12), we are given the priceless privilege of at once becoming God's children in Christ. 

While Jews in biblical times came trembling to their temple, offering many sacrifices to appease God, and while other religions do not dare to call God their Father, only those who are "in Christ" can come joyously running into their Heavenly Father's presence, calling Him "Abba". And there is a ring of warm informality to the term Abba. In the Aramaic language, it is an equivalent of our contemporary Daddy or Papa. Consider this Scripture: "...For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, 'Abba! Father!'" (Rom. 8:15 ESV) 

There is no needless, frantic fear for God in a Christian's life, but only a deeply reverential fear. The life of those who are "in Christ" will be one long, joyous walk with the Father (Philippians 4:4-7). Yes, in this journey, the child of God may have some slip-ups, and subsequently there may be some painful discipline exercised by the concerned Father (See Heb 12:5-11), which again is the proof of the former's sonship; however, when it is all said and done, obedience to the Father for a Christian will not be a drag, but a delight. Rivers of joy will perpetually flow into his heart (John 7:37-38) throughout his spiritual journey, even as he fleshes out an "abundant life" in Christ (John 10:10). 

Freedom... 

"So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed." (John 8:36 ESV) 

When one is walking with a heart full of Heavenly love and joy for the Heavenly Father, the human heart experiences full liberty. And why not? It has been set free both from licentiousness (bye, bye Epicurean philosophy! See Col 2:10-13) and of the need to gain Divine approval by rigid legalism (Farewell Stoicism, Pharisaical rituals et al! See Gal 5:1). What a blessed state! What a blessed state indeed!
 
Prayer: Father, what a wonderful privilege it is to be "in Christ". May we, who are experiencing the "priceless benefits" of being "in Christ", be ever grateful and loyal to Thee. In Jesus' Name. Amen.

Suresh Manoharan
An unworthy servant
J and SM Ministries
 
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Post  Admin on Sat 24 Jun 2017, 11:28 pm

June 24

Welcome to the Nugget
June 24, 2017

BREXIT and All That! Part 1

By Answers2Prayer 
  Okay, it's a year since the Brexit News, when the majority in Great Britain voted to sever it's ties with the European Union (EU), hit the media headlines. Amazingly, however, at least at the time this was written, the Brexit News doesn't seem to be in any hurry to "exit" the International Media.... 

What has been the effect of Brexit after that monumental Thursday of June 23rd, 2016, when the British voters grimly voted for "divorce" with the EU? On the financial front, markets lost more than $2 trillion on a "dark Friday" the very next day. In India, for instance, at one point fallout of the Brexit vote resulted in Sensex plunging over 1000 points. 

Ironically, after having opted to "come out" of the EU, many expressed regret on Twitter with the #Regrexit hashtag, and proposed yet another referendum aimed eventually at "coming back into" the EU Fold. At the time of this writing, a petition to force another referendum had gathered momentum with more than three million signatures. Will there be another vote for rejoining the EU? Will the British come to learn that the economic benefits of remaining in the EU may actually outweigh the social ones that were persumed to come their way by opting out? 

In much the same way that the British may have not fully understood the economic benefits of remaining in the EU, Christians may also not fully understand the priceless benefits that would accrue to us for simply being "in Christ". In this Series of three parts, Yours Truly will attempt to bring to the fore some of the "unique benefits" which accrue to all those who are "in Christ". 


Faultless... 

"There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus." (Rom. 8:1 NET) 

In Christ, all erstwhile sinners are declared "faultless" before the Almighty God, for Christ has already "paid" for our sins on the Cross (2 Cor 5:21). The moment we accept the redemption plan of God in Christ, we are pronounced "innocent" in the Heavenly Court, whatever be our background till then (Col 1:22/John 3:3). It is so simply amazing that one needs to experience it to fully believe it. Didn't somebody say that the proof of the pudding is in the eating thereof? Yours Truly, experienced this first-hand one Sunday...to be more precise, it was October the 16th, 1983...all of 34 years ago. 

Conversely, the greatest penalty is reserved for those who do not accept God's redemption plan in Christ. If you take their action of not accepting that great salvation (Heb 2:3) to its logical conclusion, it is tantamount to treating Christ's great sacrifice on the Cross as of "no value" at all. Can there be a greater sin than that? Contextually, I am reminded of a saying: "Sinners would be condemned on the great day of Judgment, not so much for sinning, as for not accepting the Saviour". All of us inherit the fallen Adamic nature at birth, and until our last moment on planet Earth, the Divine, loving invitation, signed with Christ's blood, will always be hanging, so to speak, at the door of our hearts, until we accept the same. Here, I would like to herald--not from roof tops, but from mountain tops!--that God "would never condemn anyone who is born a sinner but would condemn only those who deliberately die as one", having never, in their lifetime, accepted Christ's invitation to be declared faultless in Him. 

Prayer: Father, what a indescribable act of Divine Grace and mercy it is on Your part to declare those of us who are in Your Son, our Saviour Christ, as faultless. May we ever be grateful to Thee for the same. In Jesus' Name. Amen.

Suresh Manoharan
An unworthy servant
J and SM Ministries
 
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Post  Admin on Thu 22 Jun 2017, 9:35 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
June 22, 2017
A Sower Went Forth
By Answers2Prayer
"A sower went out to sow his seed...And other fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bear fruit an hundredfold." (Luke 8:5,8).

I have a habit of picking seed heads off flowers and planting them in pots of soil. If they come up I am pleased and if they don't, I have not really lost anything except a tiny brown speck that could be anything.

One particular seed, not expected to grow, came up. I have planted similar seeds and have been mostly pleased with outcomes. This one has left me somewhat perplexed to say the least!

It does not look anything like what it would be expected to look like. It has grown into a different shape, a different colour, the leaves are at odds with every other plant of the same family, and the small flower, while it can be forgiven for its size, bears no family likeness. 

I remember putting the seed into this particular pot so there is no doubt about its parentage. It is who it is supposed to be but it is nothing like who it is supposed to be! 

One day I found a tiny moth attached to one leaf of the new flower and it looked appealing. It stayed there for several days, drawing nourishment from the recalcitrant flower that would sustain it for its long flight afterwards. 

A friend called and I was excited to tell her of the new flower and its history. I even hoped she would want a cutting when the plant was big enough to part with a piece of itself. But she had blind thoughts and deaf ears and was totally unimpressed with what I thought was a fascinating experience to share. 

And that, I thought, it is like sharing something new you have discovered in your Bible. You are excited and you want to share it. You are overjoyed to share with a friend whom, you believe, will be as delighted as you are.

And what happens? Deaf ears and boredom. Calamity. You each go your way without having truly shared an experience you wanted to pour into her lap--sorry--ears. You are drained, disappointed, depressed.

Some day, however, your dead seed may bear fruit. It may come to life where it is least expected and it may be something others will want to examine and enjoy more than you could have believed possible. Your friend may come to you with a seed you planted and which she has kept with an honest heart until it patiently brings forth fruit. She comes to share her joy and you will understand why you must not disappoint her. 

As Jesus said, a sower went out to sow his seed, some fell on rock, some fell among thorns and others fell on good ground. Then he said, "Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God." (Luke 8:11).
 
Verse 15, "But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience."
 
You both rejoice together as you share yourselves. 

By the way, have you worked out what my unusual flower is? Daisy? -- no. Violet? -- no. Lobelia? -- no.

I grew its mother from seed and here she is: yes, a rose. My disaster flower is also a rose and I love it dearly. Just as the Lord loves those who are similar and those who are different in appearance, in education, in wisdom and in presentation for they, and we, too are 'roses with a difference.' 

Elizabeth Price
 
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Post  Admin on Tue 20 Jun 2017, 3:44 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
June 20, 2016
Walking Shoes

By Answers2Prayer 
  "…and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace." (Ephesians 6:15)

My husband is not a shopper. But the sneakers he'd had for a long time had seen their day. He decided to bite the bullet and go for it, make a trip to the store and get some new sneakers before our trip.

The weather was gorgeous. We couldn't wait to get on our walking shoes and get going. Not too far into the hike, Ben said "You know, these shoes are kind of bothering me! They feel sort of tight or something."

We moved on. The sky was so clear, the air so cool, the trees so golden and glorious, that there was little thought given to the shoes again. Until we got back to where we were staying.

He peeled off his new shoes and socks, to discover not only an ugly blister rubbed on his heel, but also a bone bruise by his large toe. My husband's shoes were too small; the injuries he sustained took all week to heal.

In the sixth chapter of Ephesians, Paul tells us how to put on the armor of God. He says "wear shoes that are able to speed you on as you preach the Good News of peace with God". Other versions say "sandals of peace".

If I am not walking in peace, I'm not wearing the best walking shoes available. Thank you, Lord, the shoes you provide for us are not too small, not too tight, but rather always a perfect fit.

That's good news.

Irish Thursday Inspirational Messages, Sally I. Kennedy
Copyright 2016 All rights reserved.  
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Post  Admin on Mon 19 Jun 2017, 10:11 pm

A Norvell Note
You can now subscribe to A Norvell Note directly from the website by visiting www.anorvellnote.net.

Vol. 19 No. 25 | June 18, 2017

The Best Thing May Be Silence
“The one who knows much says little;
an understanding person remains calm. 

Even dunces who keep quiet are thought to be wise; 
as long as they keep their mouths shut, they’re smart.” (Proverbs 17:27, 28, The Message)


Imagine a vey long, uncomfortable silence here. 

Every time I read those words, I pause and reflect on the many times I have spoken out when I should have remained silent. I am also remind myself of the multiple times I have been engaged in conversations when all would have been better served by my silence. 

One of the freedoms we value most is our freedom of speech. Yet it is one of the freedoms we abuse the most. 

This verse from the New Testament addresses this: 

“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” (Ephesians 4:29, NIV)

“Watch the way you talk. Let nothing foul or dirty come out of your mouth. Say only what helps, each word a gift.” (Ephesians 4:29, The Message)
 
So this is what I try to do before I open my mouth (or type). 

Is what I am about to say going to fuel the fire or calm the chaos? (Proverbs 17:27)

If the conversation is already tense and uncomfortable, my role should be to calm things, not to further agitate them. Making other people angry serves no purpose. There are times when I may need to speak up to confront injustice or correct an unchristian attitude, but if I end up offending or angering another person, is it really worth it? I want to be a voice that calms, a voice of peace, a voice that builds bridges with my words. 

What are my words and tone going to reveal about me? (Proverbs 17:2)

There may be times when making a fool of myself is a good thing… if it is a worthy cause. Generally speaking, however, proving that I am a “dunce” only confirms other peoples’ suspicions. If that happens, then my credibility is gone and my chances of making a positive impact are severely diminished. I want to be a voice that encourages, instructs, and uplifts. 

Are my words beneficial and helpful? (Ephesians 4:29)

Many of my words are kept to myself because I first ask, “Will these words benefit those who hear them?” If not, I should remain silent. If I consider my words as a gift, then I need to use them wisely, but also with restraint. I want my words to be helpful. I want my words to lift others up and encourage them. I want my words to be a gift. 

Before I say something that may violate one or all three of these principles, let me be quiet and allow you to consider them. If you find any value in them, please apply them and share. If not, the best option might be silence. 

Tom

A Norvell Note © Copyright 2017 Tom Norvell All Rights Reserved.
 
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  - http://www.anorvellnote.com
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A NORVELL NOTE is a weekly inspirational article 
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Post  Admin on Sat 17 Jun 2017, 6:49 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
June 17, 2017
Giving's Secrets, Part 2: Motivation

By Answers2Prayer 
 Last Thursday, in "The Secret to Cheerful Giving, Part 1", we saw that not having enough to give is one huge barrier to cheerful giving. The first secret to cheerful giving, however, is that when we give according to how God asks us to give, we can be assured that God will provide for all our needs so that we, "...will abound in every good work." (2 Cor. 9:8 NIV). 

Unfortunately, giving because we know God will repay us does not always result in "cheerful" giving. How can we ensure that our giving is not done "reluctantly or under compulsion"? 

I believe a second barrier to cheerful giving is related to what motivates us to give. Because God provids for all our needs when we give to others, it is easy for our giving to become motivated by our desire to receive that blessing of God. According to the Bible, however, this is not the proper motivation for giving! Consider the following:

1. "If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing." (1 Cor. 13:3 NIV). In other words, if we give for any reason other than love, we might as well not give at all. 

2. "Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love." (1 John 4:8 NIV). If our motivation for giving is anything other than love, then according to 1 John 4:8, we don't even know God.

3. "This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins." (1 John 4:10 NIV). God is our ultimate example, and He showed His love for us by...giving! 

4. "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God." (2 Cor. 1:3-4 NIV). Though the context of this text is specifically "comfort", the idea is clear: God provides for our needs so that "we will be able to give them" the same gift "God has given us"! 

Our giving, therefore, must be motivated by pure, unselfish love. When it is, that love will drive us to give cheerfully to others, despite how little we have to give. 

Unfortunately, this type of love does not come naturally for us. How do we go about receiving this selfless kind of love that is required for becoming a "cheerful giver"? 

The answer comes straight from the Word of God. Please consider the following four texts: 

1. "And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit." (1 Cor. 3:18 NIV). 

2. "Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him." (4:7-9 NIV). 

3. "...so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord's holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ..." (Eph. 3:17-18 NIV). 

4. "I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh." (Ezekiel 36:26 NIV)

We can only find selfless love by making the effort to contemplate the glory of the Lord, by spending time with the Creator of the Universe, the One who loves us more than we will ever comprehend. As we do, God changes our stony hearts into hearts of flesh; and as our hearts begins to reflect His, selfless love will pour through us onto other people. 

The result? Selfless, cheerful giving! 

God recently provided me with a new ministry opportunity. At first I was frustrated that He would ask me to do even more when my time and energy were already so limited; but as God placed the secrets of cheerful giving on my heart, I decided to give it a try. The results were unbelievable. As I began spending more time in His presence, I found myself putting my trust in His unfailing love and faithfulness, and I soon began to see those around me with His heart of love. The initial change was subtle, but before long I was actually enjoying my time with those God was placing in my care. It was motivating to make them smile, to make a difference in their lives. In addition to this, there was somehow always enough time to get everything done, and I found I had energy to spare. All because God revealed to me the secrets of cheerful giving. 

Giving cheerfully to others. It's a simple, fulfilling concept; but to experience it to its fullness, we must spend time with God and allow Him to work His perfect love into our hearts. As we do, we will begin to trust God to supply all our needs, and cheerful giving will become a natural result of our changed hearts and motivations. 

"Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work." (2 Cor. 9:6-8 NIV). 

In His love,
Lyn


Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author -- "Aboard God's Train -- A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer", Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
 
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Post  Admin on Thu 15 Jun 2017, 11:40 pm

Welcome to the Nugget


June 15, 2017

Giving's Secrets, Part 1: He is Able

By Answers2Prayer 
 Giving to others. It seems such a simple thing, and it is something that we are told numerous times in Scripture to do: "Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back." (Luke 6:30 NIV; see also Deut. 15:10, 16:17; Prov. 3:27, 11:24-25, 21:26; etc.). But we aren't just asked to "give"; we are asked to give "cheerfully": "Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver." (2 Cor. 9:7 NIV)

I know that many of you reading this already give to the Lord; but can our giving truly always be described as "cheerful"? Or is "reluctant" or "under compulsion" a better descriptor? Why is it sometimes so hard to cheerfully give what God asks us to give? 

I believe there are two primary reasons that cheerful giving is difficult for us, and these will be the subject of the next two devotionals as we attempt to unravel the secrets to cheerful giving. 

The first reason that it is sometimes hard to give "cheerfully" is that so often, "just getting by" uses all available resources. For example, if trying to meet your monthly expenses already stretches your pocket book beyond its limits, the thought of giving money seems impossible. If your own problems are looming so large that they consume all of your prayer time, then even the idea of interceding for others brings on anxiety. During times of high stress, we tend to put our time and energy into self-preservation and survival, and as a result, when we are asked to take on a new responsibility, we tend to be incensed: What? I don't have enough for myself, and God wants me to do...more? 

Yet we know that our loving Father--who would never ask us to do the impossible--has told us to give, and to give cheerfully... 

Let's take a look at one of the Bible's most powerful passages about giving: "Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work." (2 Cor. 9:6-8 NIV). 

Notice in particular, the final line: "And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all thingsat all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work." In other words, when we give of our time, our talents and our resources, even in times of high stress when our resources are already limited, God will provide so that we have everything we need in order to do even more giving! 

How can this be?

Paul, the writer of the 2nd letter to the Corinthians, goes on to further explain: "As it is written:
'They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor; their righteousness endures forever.' Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness." (2 Cor. 9:9-10 NIV). 

Herein lies the first secret to cheerful giving: We don't need to worry about our resources! Remember Phil. 4:19? "And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus." (NIV). When we give according to how God asks us to give, despite our own lack of resources, we can be assured that we will have: "all that need..." and that we, "...will abound in every good work." 

I remember the testimony of one of the prayer warriors in this ministry. Although he said nothing initially, he had significant need. He felt the call of God on his life, however, and he committed himself to praying--not for his own needs--but for the needs of others. As he continued to intercede on behalf of other people, this particular prayer warrior's blessings began to flow. Soon he had a wonderful job, a lovely wife and family, and his health issues are now things of the past. 

It makes you think, doesn't it?

Giving because we know God will repay us does not, however, always result in "cheerful" giving. Join us on Saturday for "The Secret to Cheerful Giving, Part 2."

In His love,
Lyn


Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author -- "Aboard God's Train -- A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer", Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
 
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Post  Admin on Sun 11 Jun 2017, 9:20 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
June 10, 2017 

Responsibilities
By Answers2Prayer Subscribe Unsubscribe Devotionals Contact us  When our boys were young, we purchased a 10-foot pop-up trailer and towed it through most of Canada. It proved to be an inexpensive, fun way to travel, and some of our fondest vacation memories are of camping in the Maritimes, traipsing across the Canadian prairies--and freezing in the Canadian Rockies! 

There was actually a fair amount of set-up and take-down required for the little trailer, and at each stop, we each had our assigned responsibilities. The boys and I would level the trailer while Rob hooked up the water and electricity, then we would all raise the roof and pull out the beds. From there, my responsibilities were inside the trailer, while the boys and their dad finished setting up the outside camp.

The book of Ezra also speaks of a trip where each member of the traveling party was given responsibilities. The Babylonian captivity is over (See Ezra 1), and the temple has been rebuilt (See Ezra 6:13-18). We see Ezra receiving support from the Persian King (See Ezra 7:6). We see the king donating articles for the temple in Jerusalem and placing them in Ezra's care (See Ezra 7:6-18). We see Ezra gathering volunteers to come to Jerusalem to act as attendants for the house of God (See Ezra 9:17). We see the group fasting and praying for God's protection on the trip (See Ezra 8:21-23). Finally, part of the temple treasure is assigned to each of the priests and Levites, and they are given the responsibility of ensuring that their allocated treasure arrives safely in Jerusalem. 

Our Canadian vacations and Ezra's trek to Jerusalem both make me think of yet another voyage: The one we are all making through life. Our destination is Heaven, and we are urged to make this trip with endurance: "and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us..." (Hebrews 12:1). Just like each member of my family, as well as each member of Ezra's traveling group, were given responsibilities, we have each been given responsibilities for the journey through life. God may not be asking us to set up a pop-up trailer or carry temple-treasures to Jerusalem, but He's given us the two-fold responsibility of loving one another and sharing the gospel: "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another." (John 13:34); and "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age." (Matt 28:19-20). 

While setting up our pop-up trailer, one member of my family would occasionally forget to do part of their assigned job. You can believe me when I say this created stress for the rest of us, for we would have to pick up the slack. Imagine what would have happened if one of Ezra's group had shirked his duties. It would have put undue pressure on others who were already struggling to fulfill their own obligations. Now imagine what trouble it causes when we shirk our responsibilities to God's work...

Let's not shirk your God-given responsibilities. Let's not burden someone else with what God has called us to do. Let's carry our own part of the load; for in the end, this will result in millions, perhaps even billions, coming to know the Lord. 
Think about it!
In His love,
Lyn
Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author — "Aboard God's Train — A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer†, Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
 
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Post  Admin on Thu 08 Jun 2017, 10:17 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
June 8, 2017
God's World

By Answers2Prayer 
  "Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." (Matt. 6:19-21 NIV)

For a long time I wanted to live in a world of my own making. I carried this world around in my mind like a secret treasure and did all I could to bring it into reality. In my world I was famous for the things I wrote. I was on television, gave speeches, and was respected by all the great minds of this world. In my world I was rich beyond belief. I had money, mansions, cars, and boats. I went on vacations and lived in the lap of luxury. In my world I was loved by all whether I deserved it or not. I got anything I wanted from the people around me and my days were spent in comfort and ease.

Of course, this world never came to be. It remained in my mind and after a time lost its luster. I realized that it was full of the hollow, egotistical dreams of an immature mind. It took me a while to give up this world and accept another but when I did I got more happiness than I could have ever dreamed.

The world I finally accepted was the world God had in mind for me. In God's world I wrote without thought of reward. I wrote to share the truth and love He had placed inside of me. I was amazed too at how many people I touched by sharing it. In God's world I wasn't rich by the standards of this world but was rich in the treasures of Heaven. I was full of kindness, compassion, and the true joy that only God can give. In God's world I was called to love others whether they deserved it or not. I was called to give, share, and care and my days were spent in work and growth. I am still here in God's world today. I am living in His love. I am becoming the person I was meant to be, doing what I was meant to do and my life has never been better.  

May you always choose to live in God's world. When you do you will have love. When you do you will have joy. When you do your life will be forever full of meaning and purpose.

Joseph J. Mazzella
 
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Post  Admin on Tue 06 Jun 2017, 11:19 pm

Welcome to the Nugget


June 6, 2016

How you Say It



By Answers2Prayer Subscribe Unsubscribe Devotionals Contact us  "O Lord God, You are God, and your words are truth." (Samuel 7:28) 

As I was getting a dish of the strawberries for my young granddaughter, I was thinking to myself, "I got these beautiful large strawberries on sale and they've been in the refrigerator for over a week. They're getting moldy and are about on their last leg so they need to be eaten today or tossed out." 

After rinsing the berries and cutting out any yucky parts, I took the bowl to the table, explaining, "There are only a few strawberries left, and I saved them for you! You can dip them in powdered sugar; it will be a yummy dessert after lunch today." 

Both were true, my thoughts and my words, although one was negative and the other kinda had a spin to it. My Mom used to say it doesn't matter so much what you say as how you say it. 
Theologians and scholars estimate there are more than seven thousand promises from God for us in the Bible. No spin, no twist, no hidden agenda. They are said straight-out. Whenever we read or hear any of them, we can trust its validity and truth. 

Test any of them and see. It really is all in how you say it, and God's Words never says it any other way than perfectly. 

That's good news. 

Irish Thursday Inspirational Messages, Sally I. Kennedy
Copyright 2016 All rights reserved.  
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Post  Admin on Sat 03 Jun 2017, 10:53 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
June 3, 2017

Therapy Vs. Education

By Answers2Prayer Subscribe Unsubscribe Devotionals Contact us  Although it can be stressful at times, my job in stroke rehabilitation as a Speech-Language Pathologist/Therapist (SLP/T) is highly rewarding. I have the privilege of helping people relearn communication skills. For me, the ability to communicate skillfully is one of the most important parts of being human. 

There is a part to my job, however, that I do not find as pleasant: Education.

As a general rule, the public at large thinks that speech therapy is only important for those who have difficulties with pronunciation and are difficult to understand. Although this is, indeed, an important aspect of my job, communication is far broader than this. It includes our abilities to understand, to read and write, and to be able to recall the words we want to say. And all of these things are impacted by such basic cognitive skills as memory, attention, problem solving, reasoning and pragmatics. 

As a result of this broad scope of practice, approximately 90% of the stroke survivors who are referred to me require speech therapy. Unfortunately, only about 25% of these survivors realize they need it, and the first words out of the mouths of the other 75% are usually along the lines of telling me that there is nothing wrong with their speech. They then usually go on to express their surprise--and often their anger--at having to "waste" their time on speech therapy. They do not understand that according to an individual's needs, speech therapy can work together and augment physical and occupational therapies. 

My first job, then, has nothing to do with helping them with their communication difficulties; rather, I usually spend the first couple of sessions providing them with education. Once they understand that they do have stroke-related deficits that fall under my scope of practice, most of them are eager to participate. Nonetheless, it is only after all that education that we are actually able to begin assessing and treating the problems. It seems like such a waste of precious therapy time; however, a problem cannot begin to be fixed unless the patient realizes he or she has one. 

The same is true in ministry. Just as I have two parts to my job, therapy and education, we have been given a two-fold mandate. 

First of all, we are to: "...Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing." (2 Thess. 5:11 NIV. See also 1 Cor. 14:26; Heb. 10:24-25; Col. 3:16, etc.). Just like I work to help people grow and develop their communication skills, we all have a responsibility of helping our fellow followers of Christ desire to grow, develop, and mature in their walk with the Lord. 

For many Christian mentors, helping others grow in the Lord is the "easy" part of the job. It is not, however, all that we are asked to do, and the second part can be a bit more difficult: Just like I, as an SLP/T, must try to convince my patients that they have communication difficulties and need speech therapy, our first responsibility to the Lord's work is to help people understand they have a sin-problem and that they need a Saviour. Isn't this what the Great Commission is all about? "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you." (Matt. 28:19-20a NIV) And in case Jesus' final words aren't enough motivation for us, there are many other texts in the Bible that encourage us to witness: "but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth." (Acts 1:8 NIV. See also Acts 9:15-16, 13:30-31, 1 Peter 2:9, etc.) 

Witnessing, however, doesn't come easily for most of us, and we have to ask ourselves "why". Don't we want them to be saved? Don't we love them enough?

In my work, I can get very tired of always having to defend my scope of practice. Sometimes I don't even want to go up to a new patient because I already know what they are thinking: "Another SLP/T that I don't need!" I suppose it could sometimes be said that I am afraid of their rejection. 

I think the fear of rejection is also often a key reason why we are hesitant to witness. However, when we let our own fear of rejection and ridicule stop us from witnessing about Jesus, we are putting our own needs and feelings above the needs of others. We are told that all fear has its roots in lack of love: "There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear..." (1 John 4:18 NIV). Therefore, when our fear of ridicule and rejection keeps us from witnessing, is it, perhaps, a sign that we truly don't truly love in the way Jesus asks us to! 

One last parallel between my job as an SLP/T and ministry: Studies have shown that it is in the early stages following a stroke that therapy can have the greatest impact. Thus, it is important to begin speech therapy as soon as possible. Isaiah 55:6 tells us: "Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near." (NIV). This suggests that there is a limited amount of time for us to be able to teach others about God! 

I don't know about you, but I think I will try to put my time and effort, not just into helping those who already know the Lord to grow in their Faith, but also into bringing knowledge about Jesus to those who have no knowledge of Him! 

Will you join me? 

In His love,
Lyn.

Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author -- "Aboard God's Train -- A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer", Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
 
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Post  Admin on Thu 01 Jun 2017, 2:36 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
June 1, 2017

Oh Yes, You Can!
By Answers2Prayer Subscribe Unsubscribe Devotionals Contact us  "Come follow me and I will make you fishers of men" (Matthew 4:19 NIV).

I'm not sure how I came so often to sit beside my grandmother when we had family gatherings. But I remember that sometimes she'd just quietly beckon me toward herself.

Now Grandma always had handwork in her fingers as she sat in her corner after helping with meals. Crocheting, tatting, or knitting of mittens it would be--if she was not mending--but on special occasions, the mending basket was out of sight.

Grandma would put whatever she was doing into my hands. "I can't do that," I would say. "Oh yes, you can!" was her reply. And movement by movement she'd coach until I was going smoothly. I gained confidence from Grandma's encouragements--confidence so that before I was a teen, I was doing various kinds of "handwork" and mending on my own. I went on to do machine sewing of clothes.

Jesus, even far beyond my grandma, was a unique teacher: He said, "Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble of heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light" (Mathew 11:29).

Jesus put his work into others' hands. By Lake Galilee, the brothers, Peter and Andrew, experienced Jesus' invitation: "Come, follow me, and I will make you fishers of men" (Matthew 4:19). Immediately, the brothers James and John, too, followed Jesus' calling. 

But Peter, like me, had his self-doubt--adamant self-doubt; he fell on his knees: "Go away from me, Lord; I'm a sinful man!" (Luke 5:8). He was viewing the great catch of fish Jesus had caused to be in his nets, when, having caught nothing all night, he had that morning, at Jesus' command, let down his nets once more. Peter felt unworthy. But again Jesus urged Peter on: "Don't be afraid, from now on you will catch men" (Luke 5:10b).

Then there was a tax collector, Matthew, sitting at the tax booth: "'Follow me,' Jesus said to him" (Matthew 9:9b). On seeing that Jesus later had dinner at Matthew's house, some criticizing Pharisees jibed at Jesus' disciples: "Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and 'sinners'? (Matthew 9:11b)" Jesus, hearing this, said, "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means, 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice.' For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners" (Matthew 9:12,13).

And Jesus didn't stop there: After his resurrection, Jesus told his disciples to "go and make disciples of all nations" (Matthew 28:19a). He posed no limits. And not for you or for me.

Oh yes, you can! As I can. For Jesus added, "And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age" (28:20b).

Prayer-- Lord Jesus, thank you for your teaching, and for the great privilege you have given us of learning from you and taking your Word and your Way to all people. We praise you for your promise to be with us always, to coach us movement by movement by your Spirit. Direct and sanctify the attitudes of our hearts and the words of our mouths, for your Name's sake. Amen.

By Isabel Allison 
 
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Post  Admin on Sun 28 May 2017, 9:51 am

Welcome to the Nugget
May 27, 2017

Let Them Pray, Part 2
bible
By Answers2Prayer 
Last Thursday, we saw that no matter what the nature of the problem you are going through, the fix is the same: "Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray." (James 5:13 NIV).

But what if you do pray, but you don't see results?

The Bible teaches us: "If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer." (Matt 21:22 NIV). This is a promise: Whatever we ask for in prayer, believing, we will receive! 

But does this mean we will see the results we expect? The ones we desire? Does it mean that those results will always be, like the turn-around with my patient last week, immediate? 

No, it doesn't.

When I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012, God promised me about 15 hours before I found the growth that He would heal me. I had no idea what He was referring to, until I found that odd "bump" later that same day; and then I just assumed that His promise meant He would remove the tumor before I ever got to see the doctor. When He didn't, I was a bit annoyed. I decided then that He would wait until it was confirmed that I actually had cancer. Again, I was doomed for disappointment. God did not take the tumor away, and as a result, I had to go through the agony of the needle biopsy, I was required to have surgical intervention, and it was necessary to have long-term treatment. 

When I look back, however, over the past four years, I realize that God did, indeed, keep His promise. He healed and re-established me 100%. He didn't do it in my timeline. He didn't even do it in the miraculous way I expected it to be done. Instead, He used modern medicine. Nonetheless, He kept His promise to heal me. 

Why? Why was I healed in His way and not mine?

I don't know the answer to that question. When I look back, I can see how God carried me so tenderly through those hard times. I can see His hand of mercy and grace on my life more times than I can count, and in the end, I have learned so many beautiful lessons about depending on Him. Perhaps the most important lesson learned, however, was that God loves me. No matter what I am going through, I never need to doubt that fact! 

Have you prayed about your situation? Has God given you a promise of restoration, but you don't see any results? Then consider the fact that God may be answering your prayer in a different way from what you expect. Rest in the promise that He will answer your prayer, and that He does, indeed, love you so very much; and then sit back and watch for His hand in your life and in your situation. I can guarantee you that you will be blessed beyond reason, and maybe, just maybe, at the end of it all, you will say, just as I did after cancer, "God, thank You for allowing me to take this ride through the valley of ______ --with You!" 

Don't forget to pray, don't forget that God answers all of our prayers: "If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer." (Matt 21:22 NIV); and especially don't forget this vitally important fact: God loves you, and as long as you put your trust in Him, His perfect love will cast out your fear, for: "There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear..." (1 John 4:18 NIV)

In His love,
Lyn
Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author -- "Aboard God's Train -- A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer", Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
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Post  Admin on Fri 26 May 2017, 5:57 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
May 25, 2017

Let Them Pray, Part 1
bible
By Answers2Prayer 
Starting with Tuesday of last week, my life at work became much more complicated. 

In retrospect, there was no real reason for me to see it that way. My current student was doing beautifully, and because she was beginning to work independently, I suddenly found myself with plenty of time on my hands to do my paperwork and to tend to my administrative duties. As a result, for the first time in months, I am actually "caught up". Everything was going well with my colleagues, most of my patients were progressing, and I even found myself going home on time. 

So why is it that I was feeling so stressed? 

There was just this one thing I haven't mentioned: A new patient had recently come onto my caseload who was perhaps the most challenging one I've ever had to deal with in my 27-year career as a Speech-Language Pathologist/Therapist. No matter what I did, I couldn't make any headway with this patient, and my feeble efforts only seemed to raise his ire--that, incidentally was high enough to begin with!

By Tuesday of that week, I was at my wit's end. After having the worst session I've ever had in my entire career, I was completely and totally drained. I simply had nothing else to give to the rest of my patients, and when I looked at my schedule the next day and saw this patient's name in my morning bunch of patients, I panicked. What could I do that would make a difference? How could I succeed in bringing "down" his ire, rather than raising it? How could I maintain enough of "me" so that the rest of my patients wouldn't suffer? 

That's when I remembered something vitally important: I remembered to pray. 

I was immediately impressed with some new activities to try, and when I went to see this particular patient, I found him calm. He wasn't happy, but he was kind of "resigned" to the "very bad" fact that he had speech therapy. We had a beautiful session, in which we made certain headway, and the next day, when I again remembered to pray, it was exactly the same. 

Praying about problems, big or small, is not a new thing for me, and hadn't prayer made the world of a difference with my current student? Didn't prayer bring me home on time every Friday, despite the fact that on Fridays, in addition to my regular work, I have to update the patients' records? Hadn't prayer proved time and time again to keep me calm? To see my endless mountain of work come to an end? Hadn't I seen it make huge differences in the lives of my colleagues? Hadn't prayer resolved so many family problems? Brought about healing? Provided wisdom in delicate situations with my kids, my husband, my mom? 

Why did I wait so long to pray for this patient?

I don't know the answer to that question. Probably for the same reason that I usually seem to wait about twice as long as necessary before remembering to pray about--say--anything!

Many of you reading this post are dealing with problems far bigger than an angry, belligerent patient. Some of you are in life-or-death struggles. It doesn't matter, however, what the nature of your problem is, for the fix is the same: "Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray." (James 5:13 NIV)

Whatever it is you're going through, I encourage you to do what I finally did this past Wednesday morning: Give it to God in prayer, ever believing that He will make a way, He will bring you through triumphant. Then sit back and watch while He answers your prayers: "If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer." (Matt 21:22 NIV)

But what if that solution isn't immediately apparent? Join us next week for some suggestions.

In His love,
Lyn


Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author -- "Aboard God's Train -- A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer", Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
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Post  Admin on Tue 23 May 2017, 6:19 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
May 23, 2017

Twenty/Twenty Vision, Part 3

By Answers2Prayer
  Today, in the concluding part of the series on how our Heavenly Father's perspective varies with respective to that of finite intelligent men of the World, we come to two more related subjects...
Lay-up... 

"One gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want." (Proverbs 11:24) 

Now how is this possible? One steeped in human rationale may ask for in the Worldly realm, more you save, greater your savings, fatter your bank balance and so on and so forth? Let me herald the fact once again that impossible is possible only with God (Matt 19:26). Now hear this testimony from a horse's mouth (Yours truly). When I was about a quit a lucrative, highly paid job to take-up full-time spiritual ministry in answer to the Master's call eleven years ago, several questions popped up in my mind with regard to my future charity? Well, I was supporting some Christian ministries financially, when I was holding a job. Would or could I continue doing the same being a full-timer also was a question which creased my forehead before I took that "leap of faith"? Truth to tell, by His Grace and empowerment alone my financial support to Christian ministries increased much more after coming to Full-time Ministry. Why? Did I solicit funds and get them? never! The Lord provides faithfully by "stirring up the hearts of men" (Exodus 35:21--the cornerstone verse of George Muller's peerless orphanage ministry). It is indeed true that a Christian's Bank balance at the end of the day may not be "overflowing" but his spirit will become richer with time, even as his "Heavenly Bank account" will be swelling with the laying up of treasures in the place that matters most (Matt 6:19-20). Hmmm...what happened to manna which the Israelites wanted to "hoard"? Much to their chagrin, got infected with maggots (Exo 16:20)! But the same manna "laid-up" in a bowl inside the Ark of the Covenant (in the presence of the Lord)...mind you with no addition of preservatives...well...well...well...I can only shout Hallelujah remembering once again what the Saviour said "Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal" (Matt 6:19-20). Oh to look at "Heavenly Investment" as the Heavenly Father does!!! 

In Ministry, the golden rule is "If you run after Jesus, all the needed resources come 'chasing' you". But tragically if one runs after money, he would eventually find himself stranded "high and dry" (1 Tim 6:9). Shipwrecked…ah that's the word!!! 

When it comes to Charity, we can be either like clean waters of a "flowing river" or like that of a dirty, stagnant pond becoming a perfect haven for mosquito breeding (sic). Repulsive as it is, the sight of a dirty pond...our lives would appear as such in the eyes of one with a 20-20 vision, if we resort to "hoarding" greedily in the Earthly vaults instead of storing them in the "Heavenly" ones'. By the way are not flowing clean waters revered to the point of worship in our Country? In this connection, we need to tell our countrymen lovingly that the Creator alone needs to be worshipped and not His creation. 

Lay-down... 

"For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it." (Matt 16:25) 

And when it finally comes to the crunch! After our time is up and done on Earth! Take my word, by then we would have completed all of the divinely ordained purposes in our life (John 21:15-19). Now with martyrdom with all its attendant implications of physical agony looming large before us, what ought to be our response? Thankfully we should accept martyrdom (Romans 14:8) laying down our physical lives for His glory...fully believing that "sunset" (our end) in one place is actually a "sunrise" (a glorious beginning) in the other. Incidentally if our martyrdom inspires some brethren, strengthening their faith, then so be it. Didn't somebody say "aspire to inspire, even when you expire". By the way, how can a Christian discern, his time is up and it is time to cede to his killers' without any struggle? The indwelling Holy Spirit is the teacher in all matters including this dicey issue (2 Peter 1:14). 

Finally, for those who are willing to lay down their life at the altar, the reward by way of a Crown promised is not one of incorruptibility (I Cor 9:25) or rejoicing (I Thess 2:19) or glory (I Peter 5:4) or righteousness (2 Tim 4:8) but paradoxically the one of Life (Rev 2:10). Hallelujah!!! No wonder that great martyr Jim Elliot observed "He is no fool, who gives up what he cannot keep, to gain what he cannot lose". Hallelujah. 

Oh even to see "premature" death (in the sight of myopic World) wrought by martyrdom, as the Heavenly Father sees it!!! A matter of great joy for the person concerned in the Eternal perspective (Philippians 2:17)!!! 

Prayer: Father, may we at all times have the wisdom to view those sacrifices' made for Your glory as "gain", though the World may view it as "loss". In Jesus' Name. Amen.

Suresh Manoharan
An unworthy servant
J and SM Ministries  
Announcement:

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Post  Admin on Sun 21 May 2017, 10:58 pm

Welcome to the Nugget
May 20, 2017

Twenty/Twenty Vision, Part 2

By Answers2Prayer 
  Continuing to focus on how our Heavenly Father's perspective differs in relation to finite "intelligent" men of this World, today we come to yet another subject (penultimate part of the Series)...

Lofty... 

In the sight of Perfect One, the one who is lowly is the lofty one. Consider this Scripture... 

"The greatest among you will be your servant..." (Matt 23:11) 

Time we dare to re-phrase the "Leadership Training" programs in the Church as "Leadership training in Servant hood"? Yes! Oh to have the mind of the One who washed His disciples' feet and to think like Him always (John 13:4-14/Philippians 2:5)!!! 

Time also for "reverse-ageing" in the Spiritual realm...Consider this Scripture, looking at it very closely:

"And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them, And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven." (Matt 18:2-3)

In an individual's life, after conversion (being made anew in Christ -- See John 3:3/2 Cor 5:17) starts the process of becoming more and more Child-like as the indwelling Holy Spirit starts chipping away at the rough edges of his pride, self-reliance and manipulative tendencies making him flesh-out in increasing measure the Scripture portion "not by your strength or by your might but by My Spirit" (Zech 4:6) so that on the day of reckoning when he is presented to Him (Eph 4:30) we would come across as one with a total Child-like heart (the one of Adam before the Fall which was all about having child-like trust on the Father exuding absolute humility in the process). Mind you, my observations on becoming more and more child-like need to be tempered with 1 Cor 14:20 ...the Lord wants us to become more and more simple by the day...not simpletons!

Are we on the mark in the matter of spiritual reverse aging process or far off the mark in the Master's eyes? Time to introspect...and submit to the leading of the Spirit (Gal 5:16)!

While on the subject of becoming from "big to small", permit me also to state that even though it is as difficult for the high and lofty rich ones' to enter Heaven as it is for the camel to enter the eye of the needle for invariably it is in the rich we observe detestable pride, cocky self-reliance and a crafty manipulative disposition, it is certainly not impossible with God (Matt 19:26) to effect the "necessary salutary changes" in them. In the hands of the Master Sculptor- the patient and persevering Holy Spirit -- in due course of time they (rich ones after being born again) would be "cut down to size" for their own good so as to "pass through the eye of the needle" with ease. Oh to view "growing" and "pruning" process, as the Heavenly Father views it!
 
Prayer: Father, oh how we desire to become lowly Thy sight. We know the process of shaping us into Your Son's image can sometimes be very painful. Empower us from within to cope-up with the same. In Jesus' Name. Amen.

Suresh Manoharan
An unworthy servant
J and SM Ministries  
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Post  Admin on Thu 18 May 2017, 9:47 pm

Welcome to the Nugget

May 18, 2017

Twenty/Twenty Vision, Part 1



By Answers2Prayer Subscribe Unsubscribe Devotionals Contact us  "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts." (Isa 55:8-9) 

No...No...Twenty-Twenty Vision has nothing to do with Twenty-Twenty Cricket also branded as T-20 Cricket of which there is no shortage, these days. Oh yes, it was "visionary" of Cricket administrators' at the helm to have instituted this "Instant" variety of Cricket in this "Instant" age (Instant Coffee, Fast-Food etc) where time is at a premium and hence public at large, are prone to take to fast-paced Cricketing action packaged and presented all in the matter of just three hours like duck to water. Well, Twenty-Twenty vision is not about having instant "fixes for a problem" but a long-term recourse to an issue which in hindsight would be perfect. Well for those uninitiated in eye-care, "Twenty-Twenty" vision is all about having a "perfect eyesight" (as per the Oxford Dictionary). And who better than our perfect God (Matt 5:48) when it comes to having a "perfect perspective" both in the physical and the more important spiritual realms!!! 

A wise soul remarked, "We do not see things, as they are but we see things, as we are". How true! What seems absurd in the sight of mortal men, may not be so in the eyes of the all knowing Perfect One. In this Series of three parts, Yours truly has endeavoured to bring to the fore the stark contrast in the thinking of the Worldly wise and the Wisest One in the Universe whose ways and thoughts are far higher than those termed as "brilliant" by the finite World (1 Cor 1:25). 


Limp... 

"The sun rose upon him as he passed Penuel, limping because of his hip." (Gen 32:31) 

Truth be told, what was Jacob's spiritual state before his ethereal "wrestling bout" with the Lord (Gen 32:24)? Being an inherent schemer and having cheated many of his near and dear ones' till then, he was the very definition of a "spiritually lame person". But only after, he actually started physically "limping" that he began to walk aright spiritually in the sight of his Creator. In the days to follow, he would even become an innocent victim of cheating by his "near and dear ones" (Gen 37:31-35) enduring terrible emotional agony but he himself would never cheat on anyone, putting them to loss. Folks, do not look down upon (a La Job friends) those fellow Christians who are "limping", for all we know the good Lord may be using this "limp" to accomplish a greater purpose in their lives (Job 23:10). Consider Apostle Paul's struggle with a "limp" in his life that seemed for all practical purposes to be seriously "limiting" him but was actually leading to "God's power being made perfect in his weakness" (2 Cor 12:9). 

The outer man may "perish" but if the inner man is being made "stronger" because of the temporary plight of the former...nothing quite like it (2 Cor 4:16)!

Oh, wise is the one who views matters of "physical and spiritual" like our Heavenly Father does and prioritizes suitably (I Tim 4:8)!

Prayer: Father, we pray to have the mind of Your Son when it comes prioritizing on physical and spiritual matters. In Jesus' Name. Amen!

Suresh Manoharan
An unworthy servant
J and SM Ministries  
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In the Northern Hemisphere it is said, "March winds and April showers bring forth May flowers..." Enjoy the signs of Spring!
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Post  Admin on Tue 16 May 2017, 1:24 pm

14:24:28Welcome to the Nugget

May 16, 2017
What to do in the Storms of Life

By Answers2Prayer
  Decades ago, while still in my hometown of La Paz, Bolivia, birthday celebrations were a big thing. With a handful of invitations, I ran from house to house on the dirt streets where my friends lived. Anticipation danced in my heart as I delivered them with pride because my Mom had designed them with colorful writing.

My parents gathered enough money to buy ingredients for a birthday cake. And the other treat at my 10th birthday party was made by mixing red Jell-O with evaporated milk. Since we didn't have the luxury to own a refrigerator, Mom placed them outside, hoping the chilly night would make them gel.

And when my special day came, the friends who accepted the invitation, filed in through the worn, rusty gate of our house. They carried gifts. And in turn, I carry that memory in my heart.

Decade's later invitations took a different meaning. During the storms of life, I ran down the dirt street of worry and self-pity. The only way to conquer all that was to extend an invitation to Jesus. He accepted and together we celebrated a restoring of my soul.

We can all do the same. But the invitation has to be specific:

* We invite Him into our storm.
* We invite Him into the heartache of the moment.
* We invite Him to share the disappointment in our marriage.
* We invite Him to share the longing for a solution.
* We invite Him into the diagnosis from the doctor.
* And we invite Him to be with us when we face the end of something we treasure.

When Jesus accepts the invitation, He shows up carrying the gift of His promises, colorfully wrapped in His love. They repeat: "The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing." (Zephaniah 3:17)

Into what situation will you invite Jesus today?

Janet Eckles

If this message resonated with you, please visit Janet's cyberspace home for more inspiration.

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Have you noticed that our perspective on things doesn't always line up with the way God sees things? Join us on Thursday for 20/20 Vision -- A Mini-series by Suresh Manoharan.
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Post  Admin on Sat 13 May 2017, 11:54 pm

Welcome to the Nugget


May 13, 2017
A Tribute to Mothers, Part 3
By Answers2Prayer 

 In the concluding part of our series on "Mother's day" meditations...we will focus on some serious responsibilities which come calling the way of a Christian mother...

School...

"...and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus." (1 Tim 3:15)

Oh how incumbent it is upon a Christian mother who has personally tasted God's redemptive love to teach her children through life and lip from their young age onwards all about the "goodness" of God's character. This ensures that the tiny ones learn to trust Him to solve their "problems" (may appear minor to us but they are "major" in their sight), so that one day (when the age of accountability arrives), they would eventually realize their "fallen" condition (the biggest problem) and look to the Saviour for deliverance.

Eunice, the mother of Timothy (2 Tim 1:5), doubtless planted in her young son's heart the "seeds" of the "Messianic" prophecies recorded in the only available Scripture of that era (Genesis to Malachi). Thus, when the Gospel laced with the Messianic prophecies was preached in their native city of Lystra, Timothy's heart responded positively to it. Likewise, closer to our time...Susanna Wesley's meticulous grooming of her sons in the matters of Scripture would one day lead not only to the salvation experience of her John (who had previously rushed into the Pastoral Ministry without the born-again experience, failing therein predictably), but would also trigger what is now known in Christian folklore as the "Methodist reformation"!


Supplicate...

"Women received back their dead by resurrection..." (Heb 11:35)

Christian mothers are privileged not only to bring their precious offspring into this World of the physical realm, but are also charged with the responsibility of fervently praying for their salvation in order that their precious children be "born into the Heavenly realm". That is the spiritual meaning of the above-captioned Scripture verse. Yes, when a child is born, the name of the child is recorded in the hospital and eventually in the concerned Government's records; but a Christian mother needs to pray without ceasing for her child's salvation as well, in order for her child's name is also recorded in the much more important Lamb's Book of life (Luke 10:20/Rev 20:12). Now should I need to remind the devout mothers that "a man born once, dies twice, but the one born twice dies only once, and if the end times take place during his life-time, he is "exempted" from even that one death"!
 
Oh how many wonderful accounts we have come across of interceding mothers like Eliza Spurgeon who prayed passionately for the "re-birth" of her son Charles. He was so head-strong in his young age, but after being given a "new life in Christ" (John 3:3/2 Cor 5:17), he was transformed into not only a responsible Christian, but he went on to be heralded as the "Prince of preachers". 

So Dear brethren, let's cherish our mothers and thank God for them on this side of Eternity, even as we thankfully recollect how sincerely they went about their God-given responsibilities. And in case, they have "gone to a better World", let's rejoice in the "Blessed hope" of being reunited with them one day (1 Thess 4:13-18)!

My irreplaceable Mom at the age of 77 was promoted to Eternal Glory on 2-5-2016...I would one day see her once again...(2 Cor 5:8/Philippians 1:20-23)

Prayer: Lord, thanks for comforting and strengthening me in my Mother's absence. In Jesus' Name. Amen

Suresh Manoharan
An unworthy servant
J and SM Ministries
 
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