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Daily Encounter with:  ACTS International Empty Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Fri 22 Nov 2013, 11:07 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Keeping on Target  

"Though a righteous man falls seven times, he rises
again."1

In his book, Peak Performers, Dr. Charles Garfield
describes how the astronauts keep their spacecraft on
course.

"On their flights between earth and the moon, it was
said, the Apollo ships were off course much of the
time. In each instance, the spacecraft would wander off
its path and the crew would correct--wander off and
correct, again and again. And do you know what? It
didn't matter. What mattered were the results. They got
to the moon. They got home. They did it by having the
discipline and knowledge to get themselves back on
course. They followed not a perfect path, but a
critical path."

Whether we're shooting for the moon, seeking to achieve
a better personal or family life, or seeking to obey
and serve God, whatever our goals, the principle is the
same. There are always unpredictable and unexpected
events that call for change and adjustment. Although
the astronauts had to be precise in their calculations,
they still allowed for mistakes and corrections. The
person who doesn't allow for such adjustments will
probably not reach his or her goals. As Charles
Garfield explained, the "critical path" is the way to
reach any target.

For the Christian our goal is to obey and serve God and
to go on to maturity. We will stumble at times, make
mistakes, fail, and hit many a bump in the road. When
we fall, however, the important thing is the critical
path--to get up, correct our course and go on.

And as one author reminds us, "The bumps are what we
climb on!"

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, again today I commit and
trust my life and way to you and commit my life to
serving you. Thank you that you are always with me to
guide and direct my life and correct any wrong or
harmful turns that I might make--to keep me on target
with the goals and purpose you have for my life. Thank
you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in
Jesus' name, amen." 

1. Proverbs 24:16 (NIV).

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
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  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
 Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
 When copying or forwarding include the following: 
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ACTS International.

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Post  Admin on Thu 21 Nov 2013, 11:51 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Are Christians Narrow-Minded Absolutists?  

"Jesus answered, 'I am the way and the truth and the
life. No one comes to the Father except through me.'"1

"Believing in absolutes doesn't make one an
absolutist," wrote the late Chuck Colson in his news
report, "Jubilee," about a TV interview where the host
accused him of being an absolutist.

Colson said, "When that TV host asked me why Christians
always try to cram our views down people's throats, I
was getting nowhere. Then I remembered he loved to
sail.

"'Have you ever sailed at night, navigating by the
stars?' I asked. 'Yes,' he replied.

"'Could you use those stars to navigate if they
appeared in different, random positions every night?'

"'Of course not,' he said slowly.

"I think he got it. Christians are not intolerant
absolutists. We just don't want our culture to be lost
at sea, unaware of the stars above that could so
quickly right our course."2

Jesus not only stated emphatically that he was the only
way to God the Father but also that, "Heaven can be
entered only through the narrow gate! The highway to
hell is broad, and its gate is wide enough for all the
multitudes who choose its easy way. But the gateway to
life is small, and the road is narrow, and only a few
ever find it."3 We can call God an absolutist, too, if
we so desire, but to ignore his way leads to our
peril--and eternal damnation. God doesn't lead us to
our peril.

Had there been any other way to Heaven Jesus would not
have had to die on the cross to save us from our sins.
Let us thank God that he provided the only way to God,
Heaven, and eternal life. If you are not absolutely
certain that you are on the only way to God, be sure to
read the article, "How to Be Sure You're a Real
Christian" at: www.actsweb.org/christian.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, I thank you with all my
heart that you provided the only way to make my peace
with you through giving your Son, Jesus, to die on the
cross to pay the price for the forgiveness of my sins
and to give me the gift of eternal life. Thank you for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus'
name, amen." 

P.S. This same principle applies to God's Ten
Commandments, and his moral code as delineated in his
Word, the Bible. We ignore God's laws and his ways to
our peril. 

1. John 14:6 (NIV).
2. Chuck Colson, Prison Fellowship
http://www.prisonfellowship.org/. 
3. Matthew 7:13-14 (TLB)(NLT).

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
 
  Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Wed 20 Nov 2013, 11:31 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Follow the Bubbles  

"I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not
sin against you."1

Vern Treat tells about a scuba diver who said that
"when you're in deep water, you're encircled by light,
so there's no way you can tell which way is up because
the water diffuses the light. You're also totally
weightless, so you have no sense of gravity.

"Surrounded in an aura of light and weightlessness,
it's very easy to lose all sense of direction and get
disoriented. You may sense that this way is up and that
your air bubbles are going sideways. You may be so
convinced that your perception is true that you decide
to ignore your bubbles and go the way you think is up.
I wouldn't be surprised if some divers have drowned
because of this. One of the first things we were told
when learning to scuba-dive was to always trust your
bubbles--to always follow your bubbles. No matter how
you feel, no matter what you think, your bubbles are
always right."

Life can be like that at times too. If we base the
rules of life on our feelings and/or perception, we can
be very easily led astray. The philosophy, "If it feels
good it must be right," is a dangerous guide to follow
because our feelings can play all sorts of tricks on
us. If something is wrong, it is wrong regardless of
how we feel. True, it's important that we don't deny or
repress our feelings because we can learn to trust
them--but what we can't always trust is our
interpretation of them or understand what they are
telling us.

In life the only safe guide to follow when it comes to
fruitful and successful living is to trust God and his
Word, the Bible. Therein lie the "bubbles of life" to
follow. These "bubbles" are always right. Always!

"Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank you for your Word,
the Bible, and for giving us principles for healthy
living and loving. Give me a love for your Word and the
desire to hide it in my heart so I won't sin against
you. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen." 

1. Psalm 119:11 (NIV).

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
 Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Tue 19 Nov 2013, 11:52 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Doing the Best with What You Have  

"Then the LORD said to him [Moses], 'What is that in
your hand?'"1

The following story appeared in The Houston Chronicle.
I have since learned that this is reported to be an
urban legend and may not be true. However, as a parable
it has a message in that all of us need to do the best
we can with what we have.

On November 18, 1995, Itzhak Perlman, the violinist,
performed a concert at Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln
Center in New York City. Itzhak was stricken with polio
as a child; has braces on both legs and has to use two
crutches to help him walk, so it is quite a chore for
him to come onto any stage.

Barely had he started his concert when one of the
strings on his violin broke. The snap was so loud,
there was no mistake among the audience as to what
happened. Instead of the arduous task of leaving the
stage to change the broken string or get another
violin, Itzhak "waited a moment, closed his eyes and
then signaled the conductor to begin again. The
orchestra began, and he played from where he had left
off. And he played with such passion and such power and
such purity as they had never heard before. Of course,
anyone knows that it is impossible to play a symphonic
work with just three strings. I know that, and you know
that, but that night Itzhak Perlman refused to know
that. You could see him modulating, changing, and
recomposing the piece in his head….

"When he finished, there was an awesome silence in the
room. And then people rose and cheered. There was an
extraordinary outburst of applause from every corner of
the auditorium. We were all on our feet, screaming and
cheering; doing everything we could to show how much we
appreciated what he had done. He smiled, wiped the
sweat from this brow, raised his bow to quiet us, and
then he said, not boastfully, but in a quiet, pensive,
reverent tone, 'You know, sometimes it is the artist's
task to find out how much music you can still make with
what you have left.'"2

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to give
life my best shot with what I have and use it to the
best of my ability for your glory--and not worry about
what I don't have. Thank you for hearing and answering
my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen." 

1. Exodus 4:2 (NIV).
2. Jack Riemer, The Houston Chronicle.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
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  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Mon 18 Nov 2013, 11:14 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

You Are a Kxy Person  

"For we are all members of one body."1

Xvxn though this typxwritxr is an old modxl, it works
vxry wxll, xxcxpt for onx kxy. You'd think that with
all thx othhxr kxys working, onx kxy would hardly bx
noticxd. But just onx kxy out of whack sxxms to ruin
thx wholx xffort.

Havx you xvxr said to yoursxlf, "I'm only onx pxrson.
No onx will noticx if I don't do my bxst."

But it doxs makx a diffxrxncx, bxcausx to bx xffxctivx,
a family, an organization, a church or a businxss nxxds
complxtx participation by evxryonx to thx bxst of his
or hxr ability.

So if you'rx having onx of thosx days whxn you think
you just arxn't vxry important, and you'rx txmptxd to
slack off, rxmxmbxr this old typxwritxr. You arx a kxy
pxrson, and whxn you don't do your bxst, nothing xlsx
around you works out thx way it is supposxd to.2

"Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank you that I am very
important to you and that my life matters. Help me to
feel your love for me and, in so doing, know in the
depths of my heart that I am loved, needed and
important. And please help me to do my part in being a
part of what you are doing in the world today. Thank
you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in
Jesus' name, amen." 

1. Ephesians 4:25 (NIV).
2. Author unknown. Cited on many websites (including on
ACTS International).

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

Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
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Post  Admin on Sun 17 Nov 2013, 11:13 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Givers, Takers and Keepers  

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

I read how psychiatrist Karl Menninger once asked a
very wealthy patient, "What are you going to do with
all your money?"

The patient replied, "Just worry about it, I guess."

"In that case," said the doctor, "do you experience
much pleasure out of worrying about your money?"

"No, but I feel much terror when I think of giving any
of it away."

Commenting on his patient's money-sickness, Dr.
Menninger said, "Generous people are rarely mentally
ill!"

In the light of this comment, it's interesting to note
that, "According to a recent report, charitable giving
in America has increased less than one percent over the
past few years. During the same time span, however,
debt payments have risen 550 percent, while our
entertainment spending is up 123 percent. Not
surprisingly, the average consumer in this country
spends $1.05 to $1.10 for every dollar of income. The
figures are startling, even for a society where
millions of people live in various degrees of financial
debt."

Giving is an attitude. It is a way of life. Some people
are givers--others takers--and some are keepers.
Whether we give of our money, time, talents, or love,
as Jesus reminds us, "Give and it will be given to
you." And I think I could safely say, "Take and the
most valuable things of life will be taken from you."

Suggested prayer, "Dear God, please help me to be a
giver, first to you and then to others--and never just
a taker or a keeper. Thank you for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."


1. Luke 6:38.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
   
  Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
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  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Thu 14 Nov 2013, 11:19 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Little Things  

"Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that ruin the
vineyards, our vineyards that are in bloom."1

A four-hundred-year-old tree crashed to the forest
floor. Over the centuries it had been struck by
lightning fourteen times, braved great windstorms, and
even defied an earthquake. In the end, however, it was
killed by little beetles. Boring under the bark, they
chewed away its mighty fibers until the giant of the
forest lay broken on the ground.2

Little things can either make us or break us. A little
lie, a little theft, a little laziness, a little
neglect, a little drink a little too often, a little
sarcasm, a little denial here and a little there … bit
by bit we can add them all together and eventually hurt
or destroy our relationships, our physical and/or
mental health, and our walk with God.

On the other hand, a little smile, a little deed of
kindness, a little encouraging word, a little
thoughtful gift, a little phone call, a little bit of
love given a lot of times every day can add up to a
whole lot of sunshine that we can spread wherever we
are and go--and in so doing encourage others, enhance
our relationships, improve our physical and mental
health, and please the heart of God.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to watch
the many little things in my life. Help me to clean out
all the 'little' sins and self-destructive habits that
hurt myself and others, and help me to keep on
practicing little acts of love and kindness until they
become an everyday habit that will show your love to
others and gladden your heart. Thank you for hearing
and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name,
amen." 

1. Song of Solomon 2:15 (NIV).
2. Bill Tucker with Pat Maxwell, "Living a Power-Filled
Life."

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Post  Admin on Wed 13 Nov 2013, 10:53 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Balanced Living  

"And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor
with God and men."1

In other words Jesus developed intellectually,
physically, spiritually and emotionally; that is, he
grew to become a whole, healthy and well person. God's
goal, I believe, is for you and me to do the same. 

The reality is that only to the degree that we are made
whole will our lifestyle, attitudes, actions,
behaviors, and our relationships be wholesome.

When it comes to relationships--especially romantic
relationships--most of us want someone who is healthy
and whole to be attracted to us. But unless I am
healthy and whole, a healthy and whole person won't be
attracted to me.

Furthermore, in relationships two halves don't make a
whole. Relationships are like multiplication: one-half
multiplied by one-half equals one-quarter, while one
whole multiplied by one whole equals one whole.

Only whole people find wholesome relationships, and
only happy people make happy relationships.

Wholeness is available to all who want it. But as we
noted yesterday, only those who truly want to be made
whole--and are willing to pay the price--will be. The
choice is up to each one of us. Jesus' invitation is
open to all.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, with your help I choose to
be made whole. Please show me what is my
responsibility--what I need to see, hear, and do--and
please give me the courage to do it. Thank you for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus'
name, amen." 

1. Luke 2:52 (NIV).

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
 
  Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Mon 11 Nov 2013, 10:27 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Keep Your "Anger Tank" Empty  

"If you are angry, don't sin by nursing your grudge.
Don't let the sun go down with you still angry--get
over it quickly; for when you are angry you give a
mighty foothold to the devil."1

According to a report in the John Hopkins Family Health
report, "If you have a tendency to anger easily, you
may be at increased risk for a heart attack or
stroke--especially if you have heart disease or
significant heart disease risk factors. Other tip-offs
that anger may be undermining your health include being
stubborn, impatient, or hotheaded, and habitually
feeling like you want to hit someone or something."

Anger, too, is a great destroyer of relationships. It's
no wonder that the Bible teaches us to resolve it
quickly--the same day whenever possible. Being angry is
not a sin. It's what we do with it that counts. The
Bible also teaches, "Be angry, sin not."2 One way to do
this when we are feeling angry is to "speak the truth
in love," and not lash out and hurt the person with
whom we are angry.

Some well-meaning people want to blame the devil or a
"demon of anger." Not so with me. My anger is my
problem. But when I fail to resolve it (or any other
pent-up negative emotion) I give a "foothold to the
devil." When I resolve my anger, the devil loses his
foothold.

People who have a super-sensitive anger button usually
have unresolved anger from the past with an "anger
tank" that is filled to overflowing. The slightest
offense can trigger an outburst of hurtful anger.
They've been nursing grudges for a long time. This is
what the Bible teaches us not to do. That is, "don't
sin by nursing your grudge." Where this is an ongoing
anger problem, very often qualified counseling is
needed to help resolve it.

Unresolved anger is unhealthy physically, emotionally,
relationally, and spiritually. This is why the Bible
teaches, "Don't let the sun go down on your anger.
Resolve and get over it quickly." 

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to be
honest about my anger, recognize and admit when I am
overreacting and, if it is a serious problem, lead me
to find the help I need to resolve it. Thank you for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus'
name, amen." 

Note: For the helpful article, "Taming Your Anger,"
showing how to resolve anger click on:
http://tinyurl.com/hkmjo. 

1. Ephesians 4:26 (TLB)(NLT). 
2. Ephesians 4:26 (KJV).

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
 Copyright (c) 2013 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2012
  ACTS International.
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Post  Admin on Fri 08 Nov 2013, 3:49 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
The Blame Game  

"But he, willing to justify himself…."1

I have taught in workshops in the area of divorce
recovery for a number of years. In my experience a
large percentage of the divorced people I've worked
with primarily blame their partner for the breakup of
their marriage.

It seems that many of us, like the lawyer in today's
scripture, are willing to justify ourselves. While
there are always exceptions, it is rare that any one
person is totally responsible for the failure of a
marriage--or for a relational conflict. There are
rarely any totally innocent parties. We all contribute
something in some way.

For example, Tom complained bitterly how cold and
distant Mary, his wife, was and that she was afraid to
love. She may have been, but what Tom doesn't realize
is that he was attracted to Mary because he, too, is
afraid to love. He had been hurt in childhood and
hadn't resolved his issues.

Shirley was attracted to Bob, an alcoholic, because she
was a super co-dependent and needed someone to take
care of in order for her to feel loved. It wasn't
surprising to learn that her father was also an
alcoholic. As the old saying goes, "Better the devil
you know than the one you don't know."

It may not be easy to accept but the fact is that we
can tell a lot about ourselves by the people we are
attracted to. This is especially true in romantic
relationships.

I grew up taking care of my mother, my younger sisters,
and the family home. So what kind of persons do you
think I was attracted to? You're right. They were
people who needed to be taken care of. I could see the
"holes in their head" but couldn't see the meshing
"bumps on my head."

I had a lot of growing to do … still do … but as I have
grown, I have been attracted or drawn to much healthier
friends.

Only as we stop justifying ourselves and take a long,
honest look at ourselves and resolve OUR problems, do
we ever have any hope of wholesome relationships.

Suggested Prayer: "Dear God, please help me to be
honest with myself, others, and with you. Help me to
see my character flaws that may be adversely affecting
my relationships. Help me to stop justifying myself and
lead me to the help I need to overcome my faults. Thank
you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in
Jesus' name, amen." 

1. Luke 10:29

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Today's Daily Encounter
Encouragement  

"Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in
the habit of doing, but let us encourage one
another--and all the more as you see the Day
approaching."1

Even if you are aware of why geese fly in ">"
formation, it is a good reminder for us humans. As each
bird flaps its wings, it creates uplift for the bird
immediately following. By doing this, the whole flock
adds at least 71 percent greater flying range than if
each bird flew on its own.

When a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels
the drag and resistance of trying to go it alone--and
quickly gets back into formation to take advantage of
the lifting power of the bird in front.

When the head goose gets tired, it rotates back and
another goose flies point. Also, the following geese
honk from behind to encourage those up front to keep on
keeping on and to keep up their speed.

Also, when a goose gets sick or is wounded by gunshot,
and falls out of formation, two other geese fall out
with that goose and follow it down to lend help and
protection. They stay with the fallen goose until it is
able to fly or until it dies, and only then do they
launch out on their own, or with another formation to
catch up with their group.

We would do well to follow the example of the geese.

Suggested Prayer: "Dear God, please help me to be a
good team member to lead when it is my turn, and to be
a good follower and encourager when another is taking
the lead. Thank you for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen." 

1. Hebrews 10:25 (NIV).

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Post  Admin on Wed 06 Nov 2013, 8:42 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
When Success Leads to Failure  

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

"Saul DeVries was a billionaire who made his fortune
during the great depression. Born of immigrant parents,
he grew up in poverty. But as a young adult he had an
idea, a vision of how he might become a rich
man. Realizing that in the depression years, people
were unable to buy new appliances or to remodel their
kitchen and bathrooms, DeVries decided what was needed
was a single product that would clean appliances and
keep things sparkling. So, he invented an all-purpose
cleaner, the 1st of its kind, called Spic and Span®️. It
sold well throughout the depression years and continues
to do so today. Saul DeVries made billions from his
vision and literally cleaned up!"2

I also read that, when he died, in accordance with his
will his body was cremated and the ashes were poured
down his kitchen sink. Although Saul DeVries was a
billionaire, because he didn't know Jesus Christ as his
Savior, his life went down the drain, as it were. He is
said to have died a miserable man.

There is nothing wrong with becoming a billionaire as
long as money is not the controlling factor in one's
life, and providing one's money is put to constructive
service. As God's Word, the Bible, reminds us, "What
shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole
world, and lose his own soul?"3

A sobering thought indeed? The same principle applies
not only to the rich and famous but also to so many
athletes, movie stars, some political leaders, etc.,
who have reached the pinnacle of success in this life,
but have never committed their life to Jesus Christ and
received God's forgiveness for all their sins and God's
gift of eternal life.

Suggested prayer: Dear God, please help me to keep my
priorities straight and in harmony with your purpose
for my life, and help me to invest my life in a
worthwhile cause that will bring glory to you. And
please help me to be absolutely certain that my sins
are forgiven and that I will spend eternity in Heaven
with you forever.* Thank you for hearing and answering
my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus' name, amen."

*For help be sure to read the article, "How to Be Sure
You're a Real Christian" at:
http://tinyurl.com/real-christian.

1. Luke 12:15 (NIV).
2. http://tinyurl.com/bmxll2a.
3. Mark 8:36 (KJV).

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Post  Admin on Tue 05 Nov 2013, 11:06 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Are You Jesus?  

"And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's
glory, are being transformed into his likeness with
ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who
is the Spirit."1

Some time ago I read how "a group of salesmen went to a
regional sales convention in Chicago. They had assured
their wives that they would be home in plenty of time
for Friday night's dinner. In their rush, with tickets
and briefcases, one of these salesmen inadvertently
kicked over a table which held a display of apples.
Apples flew everywhere. Without stopping or looking
back, they all managed to reach the plane in time for
their nearly missed boarding.

"All but one…. He paused, took a deep breath, and
experienced a twinge of compassion for the girl whose
apple stand had been overturned.

"He told his buddies to go on without him, told one of
them to call his wife when they arrived at their home
destination and explain his taking a later flight. Then
he returned to the terminal where the apples were all
over the terminal floor.

"He was glad he did.

"The 16-year-old girl was totally blind! She was softly
crying, and helplessly groping for her spilled produce
as the crowd swirled about her, no one stopping and no
one to care for her plight.

"The salesman knelt on the floor with her, gathered up
the apples, put them back on the table and helped
organize her display. As he did this he noticed that
many of them had become battered and bruised; these he
set aside in another basket.

"When he had finished, he pulled out his wallet and
said to the girl, "Here, please take this $40 for the
damage we did. Are you okay?" She nodded through her
tears. He continued on with, "I hope we didn't spoil
your day too badly."

"As the salesman started to walk away, the bewildered
blind girl called out to him, 'Mister….' He paused and
turned to look back into those blind eyes. She
continued, 'Are you Jesus?'

"He stopped in mid-stride, and he wondered. Then slowly
he made his way to catch the later flight with that
question burning in his soul: 'Are you Jesus?'"2

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, I am available, please use
me to be 'as Jesus' in some way today to every life I
touch, and grant that they, seeing Jesus in me, will
want you for themselves. Thank you for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus' name, amen."

Note: If you have never committed your life to Jesus
Christ and would like to do that, be sure to read the
article, How to Be Sure You're a Real Christian" at:
http://tinyurl.com/real-christian. 

1. The Apostle Paul (2 Corinthians 3:18 NIV).
2. Author unknown.

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Post  Admin on Mon 04 Nov 2013, 10:44 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Whatever Bothers Me...  

"But he, willing to justify himself…."1

Years ago when I was taking a course in counselor
training, the lecturer made the comment, "Whatever
bothers you is your problem."

His statement was a rude awakening for me. Actually, my
biggest problem was that I was in denial about "my"
biggest problem--me! I thought my issue at the time was
what somebody else had done to me. I, too, was all too
willing to justify myself.

I was feeling very hurt but discovered that beneath my
hurt was a whole lot of pent-up hurt and anger from
past unresolved experiences. I was also in denial about
why I was attracted to the person whom I was accusing
of hurting me.

What another person does to me may or may not be a
problem. How I react is always my responsibility, and
to the degree that I overreact that is always my
problem.

I need to realize that nobody can hurt my feelings or
make me angry without my permission, which, of course,
doesn't justify what hurtful things others do to me or
what I do to them. If, for example, I am a
super-sensitive person because of past hurts, I will
usually overreact to people and blame them for hurting
my feelings. While the real reason I am SO hurt is
because I haven't resolved my hurt from the past. 

To overcome relational conflicts both parties need to
admit what they are contributing to the issue at hand
and see when they are overreacting--and know why! When
we overreact, as long as we deny it and justify
ourselves, and play the blame game, we will B-LAME--and
never resolve the conflict at hand. 

Suggested Prayer: "Dear God, please deliver me from the
sin of denial and confront me with the reality of what
I am contributing to every conflict in which I find
myself--whether it is at work, home, or with a friend
or loved one. Help me to take full responsibility for
my feelings, actions, and overreactions--and stop
justifying myself when I am overreacting. Thank you for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus'
name, amen." 

1. Luke 10:29.

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Post  Admin on Fri 01 Nov 2013, 11:02 pm

Today's Daily EncounterWhat If God …  

"Pray without ceasing."1

Have you ever had one of those days when you had a very
important phone call to make and you received a "voice
mail" machine answer that after a brief recorded
message you were put on hold … then you got the run
around … put back on hold … seemingly ad infinitum
until you got a real live person to talk to? I'm sure
you have. I did this morning.

As a friend of mine suggested, "What if when we called
on God in prayer we got the following answer: 'Thank
you for calling Heaven. Your prayer is very important
to us. Please stay on the line and your prayer will be
answered in the order it was received. Or, if you would
like to leave a prayer request, press '2', and after
the sound of the harp state your message clearly, the
date and time of your call, your prayer-phone number,
and we will reply to you as soon as it is convenient.
Have a 'God' day!'"

Thank God it isn't so. As God's Word says, "This is the
confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask
anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we
know that he hears us--whatever we ask--we know that we
have what we asked of him."2

Suggested prayer:  "Dear God, thank you that you are
always available to all who call on you--to all who are
sincere and call on you in truth--and that you always
hear and answer these prayers. Gratefully,  in Jesus'
name, amen." 

1. 1 Thessalonians 5:17. 
2. 1 John 5:14-15 (NIV).

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Post  Admin on Fri 01 Nov 2013, 12:53 am

Today's Daily Encounter

Changing Needs for Changing Times  

"Jesus told him, 'Stand up, roll up your sleeping mat
and go on home!' Instantly, the man was healed! He
rolled up the mat and began walking! But it was on the
Sabbath when this miracle was done. So the Jewish
leaders objected. They said to the man who was cured,
'You can't work on the Sabbath! It's illegal to carry
that sleeping mat!'"1

Imagine that. Jesus healed a man on the Sabbath and the
religious leaders "tried all the harder to kill him"
(that is, to kill Jesus)!

As we've noted before, tragically, the religious
leaders of Jesus' day loved their programs more than
they loved people! They were expecting the promised
Messiah but because he didn't come the way they
expected him to come, and didn't do things the way they
wanted them done, they wouldn't believe in him and
refused to change.

It goes without saying that we live in a world of rapid
change. Yes, we need to hold fast to that which is
permanent and eternal, but in other areas of life if we
don't change, we, too, may miss out and get left
behind.

Here's a classic example from the business world: "From
1900 to 1967, the Swiss were the leading watchmakers in
the world. In 1967, when digital technology was
patented, the Swiss rejected it in favor of the
traditional ball bearings, gears, and mainsprings they
had been using to make watches for decades.
Unfortunately, however, the world was ready for this
advance, and Seiko, a Japanese company, picked up the
digital patent and became the leading watch
manufacturer in the world almost overnight. Fifty
thousand of the 67,000 Swiss watchmakers went out of
business because they refused to embrace this new
technology. It was not until years later that the Swiss
caught up and regained their position in the
marketplace with the creation of Swatch watches."2

This principle also applies to each of us in today's
marketplace--if we don't keep up our training with the
needs of today's changing marketplace, again, we may be
left behind.

In serving God, while our message never changes, our
methods of communicating it need to change with the
changing times and the changing needs of people or,
again, we may get left behind--as many a business,
church, and organization has. By way of interest, as
the Internet began to grow, our gospel literature sales
began to plummet even though our literature had done
extremely well for three decades. This is why here in
our US office we changed from hard copy print to the
electronic media. We never changed the message--only
the way of communicating it. Had we not made this
change, we never could have continued to successfully
preach "the gospel to every creature"3 as Jesus
commanded.

Suggested Prayer: "Dear God, help me to hold fast to
that which is eternal, but be flexible and willing to
change where change is needed. And above all help me to
be willing to change where you see my need for change
and growth. Thank you for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."

1. John 5:8-10 (TLB)(NLT).
2. Cited in Bits & Pieces.
3. Mark 16:15.

Note: If you have never received Jesus as your Savior
or received God's forgiveness, I encourage you to do
that today. To do so see "God's Invitation" at:
www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or for further help
read, "How to Be Sure You're a Real Christian" at:
www.actsweb.org/christian.

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Post  Admin on Thu 31 Oct 2013, 1:06 am

Today's Daily Encounter

Persistence Pays  

"If you wait for perfect conditions, you will never get
anything done. Keep on sowing your seed, for you never
know which will grow--perhaps it all will."1

About Thomas Edison's many attempts in seeking to
invent the electric light bulb Susan Hayward in Begin
It Now wrote, "Two dejected assistants of Thomas Edison
said, 'We've just completed our 700th experiment and we
still don't have the answer. We have failed.'

"'No, my friends, you haven't failed,' replied Mr.
Edison, 'it's just that we know more about this subject
than anyone else alive. And we're closer to finding the
answer because now we know 700 things not to do. Don't
call it a mistake. Call it an education.'"2

Persistence paid off very well for Edison … for us too
because eventually he succeeded in perfecting the
electric light bulb. Persistence in any worthwhile
cause always pays rich dividends. And better
still--persistence in God's work pays eternal
dividends.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to be
persistent in serving, obeying, trusting and loving
you. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen." 

1. Ecclesiastes 11:4, 6 (TLB)(NLT). 
2. Cited in Bits & Pieces.

Note: If you have never received Jesus as your Savior
or received God's forgiveness, I encourage you to do
that today. To do so see "God's Invitation" at:
www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or for further help
read, "How to Be Sure You're a Real Christian" at:
www.actsweb.org/christian.

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Post  Admin on Tue 29 Oct 2013, 9:57 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Guilt Be Gone  

"Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for
each other so that you may be healed."1

The story is told about the old-time circuit-riding
preacher who was visited by three men. They came to
confess to him that twenty years before they had loaded
his horse and buggy with a load of heavy rocks and
hidden them so he wouldn't see them. They wanted to
apologize because they still felt guilty about it for
all these years. To which the preacher replied, "You
have carried these rocks for twenty years. I only
carried them for a day."

Simple story. Profound truth. There are three things we
can do with guilt. We can bury (repress) it from
conscious memory and deny it. We can suppress it; that
is, be consciously aware of it but not do anything
about it. Or we can confess and resolve it.

To repress or suppress guilt can and does affect one's
health and often one's relationships. But to confess it
and put things right brings great freedom and healing.

As David said after he confessed to God his sin with
Bathsheba, "There was a time when I wouldn't admit what
a sinner I was. But my dishonesty made me miserable and
filled my days with frustration. All day and all night
your hand was heavy on me. My strength evaporated like
water on a sunny day until I finally admitted all my
sins to you and stopped trying to hide them. I said to
myself, 'I will confess them to the Lord.' And you
forgave me! All my guilt is gone."2

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, if there is anything in my
life that is hindering my relationship with you and/or
others please bring it to my remembrance so I can
confess it and, wherever possible and applicable, help
me to right any wrongs I have done. Thank you for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus'
name, amen." 

1. James 5:16 (NIV). 
2. Psalm 32:5 (NIV).

Note: If you have never received Jesus as your Savior
or received God's forgiveness, I encourage you to do
that today. To do so see "God's Invitation" at:
www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or for further help
read, "How to Be Sure You're a Real Christian" at:
www.actsweb.org/christian.

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Post  Admin on Tue 29 Oct 2013, 12:06 am

Today's Daily Encounter

Church Attendance Can Prolong Life

"Trust in the LORD with all your heart; and lean not on
your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge
him, and he will direct your paths."1

In his book, Finding God in Unexpected Places, Philip
Yancey says, "When Dr. David Larson was training for a
career in psychiatry, faculty advisers warned him,
'You'll harm your patients if you try to combine your
Christian faith with the practice of psychiatry. It's
clinically impossible.' Instructors insisted that
religion usually harms a person's mental health."

This troubled Larson so much that he made a study along
these lines for fifteen years. He discovered that most
of the research ignored the subject of religion
altogether. What he did learn from the research (that
did include religion) proved to be pleasantly
surprising. A sampling:

Regular church attendees live longer and are less
likely to abuse alcohol or drugs. Prison inmates who
make a religious commitment are less likely than their
counterparts to return to jail after release. He also
found that people who attend church regularly are more
than twice as likely to remain married.

Larson also pointed out the disastrous effects that
broken homes have on families. For example, divorce
dramatically increases the likelihood of an early
death. It also disrupts mental health, especially for
men. And it "takes a devastating toll on children.
Proportionately twice as many criminals come from
single-parent homes. Indeed, family structure proves
more effective than economic status in predicting a
life in crime. Children from broken homes are more
likely to do poorly in school, abuse drugs, and attempt
suicide."2

Having come from a broken home I know too well the
devastating effect it has on the children. If it
weren't for the grace of God, I don't know where I
would be today. We simply cannot emphasize the
tremendous importance of daily committing and trusting
our life to the Lord and acknowledging him in
everything we do.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, with your help I choose to
trust you with all my heart and acknowledge you in
everything I do, and I thank you for promising to
direct my paths. Thank you for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."

1. Proverbs 3:5-6.
2. Philip Yancey, Finding God in Unexpected Places, p.
81-83.

Note: See "What a Good Church Can Do for You" at:
http://tinyurl.com/ov5f7 .

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Post  Admin on Fri 25 Oct 2013, 7:11 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

A Little Child Shall Lead Them  

"Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those
who weep."1

Leo Buscaglia, "professor of love," once talked about a
contest where he was asked to be a judge. "The purpose
of the contest was to find the most caring child. The
winner was a four-year-old child whose next-door
neighbor was an elderly gentleman who had recently lost
his wife. Upon seeing the man cry, the little boy went
into the old gentleman's yard, climbed onto his lap,
and just sat there.

"When his mother asked him what he had said to the
neighbor, the little boy said, 'Nothing, I just helped
him cry.'"

Rare is the friend who knows how to weep with those who
weep! Such a friend we all need to have. But first of
all, such a friend we need to be!

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please give me a loving,
sensitive heart to feel my brother/sister's pain, and
learn how to weep with him/her in their time of sorrow
and grief. Thank you for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen." 

1. Romans 12:15.

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Today's Daily Encounter

Light in the Darkness  

"Let your light so shine before men, that they may see
your good works, and glorify your Father which is in
heaven."1

When Robert Louis Stevenson was a young child, as dusk
was turning to darkness, he had his face pinned to the
window at the front of his house fascinated by the
lamplighter coming down the street lighting the
old-fashioned gas street lamps.

He called out to his nana saying, "Nana! Come quickly.
There's a man coming down the street punching holes in
the darkness!"

Wherever we are and wherever we go may God's love shine
through us so that by our manner of conversation and
life we, too, will "punch holes in the darkness"--the
spiritual darkness that surrounds us.

No matter how small you feel your "light" may be,
remember that all the darkness in the world cannot put
out the light of one small candle--or that of one
ordinary Christian!

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to so live
that your love and your light will shine through me,
and thereby show others the way to Jesus. Thank you for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus'
name, amen." 

1. Matthew 5:16.

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Post  Admin on Wed 23 Oct 2013, 10:49 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Patience  

"We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and
trials for we know that they are good for us--they help
us learn to be patient."1

Even though I have quoted it before, I appreciate the
following ditty because there is so much truth in it:

"It's the little things that bother us and put us on
the rack, you can sit upon a mountain but you can't sit
on a tack!"

It's amazing how uptight and impatient I/we can become
with the little annoyances of everyday life. Sometimes
it seems these upset us more than big issues.

Remember, though, that the things that bug us don't
cause our impatience, they just trigger it! And that's
what God wants to get us to face and fix. He wants to
fix us from the inside out so that we will learn both
patience and every other grace.

Keep in mind, though, if you don't want to experience
trials and tribulation, don't ever pray for patience!
This is because we only learn patience by experiencing
the things that upset and bug us. 

Growth is usually slow. So, while learning to be
patient with others, don't forget to learn to be
patient with yourself.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, help me to not only grow
in patience but 'in faith and love and every grace /
Might more of your salvation know / And seek more
earnestly your face.' Thank you for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."


1. Romans 5:3 (TLB)(NLT).

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Post  Admin on Tue 22 Oct 2013, 11:03 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Forgiveness Versus Reconciliation

"We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to
God."1

We know that we need to forgive all who have hurt or
offended us, but are we to be reconciled to them?
Wherever possible this ought to be our goal, but it
isn't always possible as reconciliation is dependent on
both parties.

Primarily we need to be reconciled to God. We do this
when we confess our sins to him and receive his
forgiveness. However, for our own wellbeing it is
imperative that we forgive any and all who have hurt
us. This can be extremely difficult if the one involved
won't even admit what s/he has done. This, then, makes
genuine reconciliation almost impossible.

According to some folk we can't forgive this type of
person. If this is so, some of us are going to carry
grudges for a long time. In these instances forgiveness
is a choice. We can choose to forgive or we can cling
to our hurt and anger and hurt ourselves.

To genuinely forgive we need to get rid of our hurt and
anger by expressing these feelings, not necessarily to
the one who hurt us, but to an understanding person to
rid ourselves of these bottled up destructive emotions.
Once we do this, forgiveness becomes possible even if
there is never any reconciliation.

Keep in mind, too, that forgiveness doesn't mean that
we allow the person who hurt us to hurt us again. With
these people we need to have healthy boundaries to
protect ourselves. Remember, too, that meekness is not
weakness. Lack of healthy boundaries is.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to forgive
all who have hurt me and be reconciled to them wherever
possible. But help me to forgive regardless of the
other person's response. And may I always admit and
resolve my part in all conflicts and be reconciled to
you. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."

1. 2 Corinthians 5:20.

Note: If you have never received Jesus as your Savior
or received God's forgiveness, I encourage you to do
that today. To do so see "God's Invitation" at:
www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or for further help
read, "How to Be Sure You're a Real Christian" at:
www.actsweb.org/christian.

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Post  Admin on Mon 21 Oct 2013, 6:32 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Are Angels Real?  

"Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve
those who will inherit salvation?"1

There's a considerable amount of interest in angels
these days. Are they for real or just a figment of the
imagination of dreamers, poets, authors, and the makers
of Hollywood movies?

A pastor's wife I know personally was awakened one
night at 2:00a.m. with a sense of urgency to pray for
her married daughter who was home alone in another
city. The following morning her daughter called to say
that she was awakened at 2:00a.m. by a masked stranger
standing at the end of her bed. The daughter saw no one
else in the room but could feel light "steps" all over
her bed.

Suddenly the intruder turned as if terrified and ran
from the house, exiting as quickly as he could! Was it
the presence of an angel/s that caused him to run? I
believe so. 

The Bible is filled with examples of the involvement of
angels in the affairs of mankind. We are not given too
many details of how they actually help God's people,
but we know they are his messengers sent to assist us.
They are not to be worshiped. Worship belongs only to
God, but we do need to thank God for sending not only
his Son to die for us, but also for sending his angels
to minister to us.

The writer of the letter to the Hebrew Christians also
said, "Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so
doing some people have entertained angels without
knowing it"2 or, as the King James Version puts it,
"entertained angels unawares." 

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank you for the
ministering angels you send to those who have accepted
you as personal Lord and Savior. Help me always to be
grateful for their help even though they may be 'angels
unawares.' Thank you for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen." 

1. Hebrews 1:14. 
2. Hebrews13:2 (NIV).

Note: If you have never received Jesus as your Savior
or received God's forgiveness, I encourage you to do
that today. To do so see "God's Invitation" at:
www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or for further help
read, "How to Be Sure You're a Real Christian" at:
www.actsweb.org/christian.

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Post  Admin on Fri 18 Oct 2013, 7:47 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Learning to Love  

"We love Him because He first loved us."1

While we are encouraged and even commanded by God to
love one another, it isn't always easy to do. Loving
actually needs to be learned.

As the Bible teaches, we love God because He loved us
first. He modeled it for us. The same principle is true
with human love. We love people because someone first
loved us and modeled love for us.

We didn't come into the world knowing how to love, only
with the ability to learn how to love. If we didn't
receive healthy loving or if we didn't feel adequately
loved when we were growing up, chances are as adults we
will suffer from love deprivation and not know how to
love properly--only how "to make" love which may or may
not have anything at all to do with love!

In other words, to learn to love we need to be loved
first--for what we didn't receive in our early
developmental years, we need to receive now. 

We do this by having at least one or two safe, loving,
non-judgmental, and accepting people to love us as we
really are--by allowing them see our total dark
side--secrets, failures, sins, weaknesses, faults …
warts and all. As these people love and accept us for
who we are (not for what we have or haven't done), we
learn little by little to love and accept ourselves.
Remember, too, that we can only be loved to the degree
that we are known, and we can only love and accept
others to the degree that we have learned to love and
accept ourselves. Admittedly this can be very scary but
it is profoundly healing. 

This is another reason why the Bible teaches us the
importance of confessing our sins and faults to one
another.2 Doing this is crucial for the healing of our
human hurts and damaged emotions.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please give me a few
friends with whom I can feel safe to let them know me
fully and love me still. Through their love and your
love please help me to learn to love and accept myself
in a healthy way. In so doing teach me to love others
who also need to be loved in the same way I do. Thank
you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in
Jesus' name, amen." 

1. 1 John 4:19 (NKJV). 
2. James 5:16.

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Post  Admin on Thu 17 Oct 2013, 8:03 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Successful Living

"If your gift is to encourage others, do it! If you
have money, share it generously. If God has given you
leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously.
And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others,
do it gladly. Don't just pretend that you love others.
Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Stand on the side
of the good. Love each other with genuine affection,
and take delight in honoring each other. Never be lazy
in your work, but serve the Lord enthusiastically."1

Marshall Field, quoted in Predictions & Prescriptions
newsletter, gives twelve points to remember for
successful living:

1. The value of time
2. The success of perseverance
3. The pleasure of working
4. The dignity of simplicity
5. The worth of character
6. The power of kindness
7. The influence of example
8. The obligation of duty
9. The wisdom of economy
10. The virtue of patience
11. The improvement of talent
12. The joy of originating

All of the above are excellent, but the best advice for
successful living is still to be kind, be diligent, do
all the good you can, model Christian living, love one
another, and above all, don't forget God; and serve him
enthusiastically.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, help me to so live that my
life will model what it means to be truly successful
(in your view) so that people will see you in me and
want the same for themselves. Thank you for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."


1. Romans 12:8-11 (TLB)(NLT).

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Post  Admin on Wed 16 Oct 2013, 10:24 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Money: Servant or Master?

Jesus said, "Beware! Don't always be wishing for what
you don't have. For real life and real living are not
related to how rich we are."1

"Money," said Sanford Lee, "is an excellent servant,
but a terrible master."

A reporter once asked the elder Rockefeller, "How much
money does it take to satisfy a person?"

The billionaire snapped back, "Always a little more!"

Another has said:" Money will buy the following: A bed
but not sleep / Books but not brains / Food but not an
appetite / Finery but not beauty / A house but not a
home / Medicine but not health / Luxuries but not
culture / Amusement but not happiness / A crucifix but
not a Savior."

Obviously we can't live without money and there's
nothing wrong with being wealthy. The issue is, do we
own our money or does our money own us, and what is our
motive for wanting more money?

I've never forgotten the title of an article I read
years ago that said, "What God couldn't do if only he
had the money!"

Interesting point. The truth is that it takes money to
do much of God's work and God's way of financing this
is through the committed giving of his people. If every
Christian did this and gave in proportion to what God
has given him/her (or tithed as some prefer to call
it), God's work on earth would be done and the entire
world would be given the gospel.

We came into the world with nothing. We'll go out the
same way. It's only what we invest now in the Kingdom
of God that we can send ahead. As Jesus put it, "Do not
store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth
and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.
But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where
moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not
break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there
your heart will be also."2

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, help me to realize the
tremendous importance of investing my life, my talents,
and my money in eternity and have values that are
pleasing to you. Thank you for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."

1. Luke 12:15 (TLB)(NLT).
2. Matthew 6:19-21 (NIV).

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