World Wide Christians Partner with Jesus' Place/
Would you like to react to this message? Create an account in a few clicks or log in to continue.
Who is online?
In total there are 8 users online :: 0 Registered, 0 Hidden and 8 Guests

None

[ View the whole list ]


Most users ever online was 115 on Wed 03 Jul 2019, 3:20 pm
Latest topics
» BIBLE STUDY on VERSE
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 10:27 pm by Admin

» R.D SOUZA Saved by faith
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 10:22 pm by Admin

» WORTHY NEWS
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 10:19 pm by Admin

» Daily Disciples
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 10:18 pm by Admin

» servant @ TWO LISTENERS
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 10:13 pm by Admin

» My Manna
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 10:11 pm by Admin

» ISRAEL BREAKING NEWS
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 10:09 pm by Admin

» ATLAS SHRUGS - PAMELA GELLER
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 10:05 pm by Admin

» Pastor Francis Frangipane
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 9:50 pm by Admin

»  HONEST REPORTING Defending Israel from Media Bias plz read REGULAR UPDATES
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 8:11 pm by Admin

» Keith China Nanjing
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 6:19 pm by Admin

»  BRITAIN NEWS AND ALERT's
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 4:04 pm by Admin

» ENDTIME HEADLINES
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyYesterday at 1:20 pm by Admin

» THOUGHT PROVOKING - INSPIRATIONALS
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyThu 13 Aug 2020, 8:16 pm by Admin

» Share your Jokes smiles here
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyThu 13 Aug 2020, 8:12 pm by Admin

» ISRAEL VIDEO'S VARIOUS COVERAGES
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyThu 13 Aug 2020, 1:31 pm by Admin

» +Dev+ Michael D. Inman Pastor
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyThu 13 Aug 2020, 1:09 pm by Admin

» KEITH NOTES FROM NANJING
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyThu 13 Aug 2020, 12:40 pm by Admin

» NUGGET Today's Devotional
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyThu 13 Aug 2020, 12:38 pm by Admin

» BIRTH PANGS – Series of Powerful Earthquakes Volcano's Strike Around the Globe
WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 EmptyThu 13 Aug 2020, 12:33 pm by Admin

Navigation
 Portal
 Index
 Memberlist
 Profile
 FAQ
 Search

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Page 9 of 20 Previous  1 ... 6 ... 8, 9, 10 ... 14 ... 20  Next

Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Wed 05 Jun 2013, 10:04 pm

I Believe I Will
John 3:17-18
"For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God."
I remember, as a boy, visiting the home of an elderly couple in Wisconsin as we traveled on our way to Minnesota. The man, in his eighties and near death's door, was confined to his chair. We sat in the living room—my father and mother, my three brothers, and I.
Although the man's children supported my missionary parents, he was not a Christian. I can still hear my father as he shared the plan of salvation with him and then asked, "Would you like to receive Christ as your own Savior? Would you like to ask Him into your life?"
The man said, "I don't believe I will."
Something pressed upon my father to risk offense, because he simply rewound his conversation and started over. He pulled his chair right up to the recliner where the old man was sitting wrapped in a comforter. I remember the urgency in my dad's voice.
Here was a man who had lived a respectable life, raised decent children, attended church, and accomplished a lot of good things. Here was my father telling him that he was not good enough in himself!
After explaining the gospel yet another time, Dad put the question to him again: "Would you now place your faith in Christ and simply receive Him as your personal Savior?"
I held my breath. It was then that the man replied, "I believe I will."
Now there were tears running down my cheeks. None of us knew it at the time, but within a few months the man would die.
Death comes to all. It's a reality of the planet we inhabit. This is the reason Jesus Christ came into the world—that it might be saved.
But why are we in this desperate condition? The Scriptures tell us that all men are sinners (Romans 3:10-23) and death is the result of that sin (Genesis 2:17; Ephesians 2). It is spiritual death.
Now that's a problem, and the solution can't be found in mankind because all men are dead. Christ took the punishment that was ours and bore it Himself, offering us His righteousness in return. He paid the debt for our sin on the cross. This He did for all who will believe and accept His gift of salvation.
The death, burial, and resurrection of the Savior provide the proverbial life raft, the cure, the escape from death's everlasting clutches. But the raft must be inflated; the cure must be swallowed; the escape must be made through the open door.
We would think it crazy that a drowning man would pass up a life raft and say, "I don't believe I'll get in it." It would be fatal to turn from the cure and say, "I don't believe I'll take it." It would be suicide to slam the escape door and say, "I don't believe I'll go." Yet, we seem quite unconcerned when a similar response comes from those with whom we've pled to accept Christ's love and sacrifice: "I don't believe I will."
How about you? As you start down this path of spiritual retreat, will you believe on His name and accept His shed blood as the payment for your sins? Will you receive His saving forgiveness? There should be only one answer . . . "I believe I will."
Prayer point: If you have never come to know God through His Son, pray that He would show you the good news in John 3. If you do know Him, pray that God would help you keep in mind that everyone needs Jesus.
Extra Refreshment: Romans 3:21-26, the passage that some call the "heart of the Gospel."
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Tue 04 Jun 2013, 11:05 pm

Disturbing the Peace
Matthew 10:34
"Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword."
A riot took place in Kansas a few years ago; it wasn't in a back alley or a city park—it was in the House of Representatives!
The elected officials started their session as they always did—with prayer—but the man who was asked to pray was Pastor Joe Wright. The provocative words of his prayer caused an uproar in the House. He prayed:
Heavenly Father, we come before You today to ask Your forgiveness and seek Your direction and guidance. We know Your Word says, "Woe to those who call evil good," but that's exactly what we've done. We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and we have inverted our values.
We confess that we have ridiculed the absolute truth of Your Word and called it moral pluralism, and worshiped other gods and called it multiculturalism. We have endorsed perversion and called it an alternative lifestyle. We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery, and neglected the needy and called it self-preservation.
We have killed our unborn and called it choice, and shot abortionists and called it justifiable. We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building self-esteem, and abused power and called it political savvy. We have coveted our neighbor's possessions and called it ambition, and polluted the airwaves with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression. We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment.
Search us, O God, and know our hearts today; try us and see if there be some wicked way in us. Cleanse us from every sin and set us free.
Guide and bless these men and women who have been sent here by the people of Kansas and have been ordained by You to govern this great state. Grant them Your wisdom to rule and may their decisions direct us to the center of Your will. I ask it in the name of Your Son, the living Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Wow! What a prayer!
Joe reminded every Representative—and us— that our culture has been deceived, and stands in need of repentance.
He may as well have been pointing a gun at them by the way they responded to his prayer.
Before he had even finished, representatives were flooding the microphones to begin their angry tirades against this pastor. His prayer for pardon and wisdom quickly made its way into national headlines that read something like this: JOE WRIGHT—YOU HAVE UPSET OUR WORLD!
Telling the world that they've given sin respectable names and are in need of a Savior doesn't go over very well. That means they are sinners! Are you willing to upset your world today?
Now go out . . . and disturb the peace!
Prayer Point: Pray for boldness to share the gospel with unbelievers, asking God to give you the kind of passion that Joe Wright, the apostle Paul, and so many others had for sharing their faith, even though it might just upset your own world.
Extra Refreshment: Acts 4.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Tue 04 Jun 2013, 12:29 am

Sola Scriptura!
John 17:17
"Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth."
I believe we are living in an exciting era. It is a period in church history when the debate over the nature and sufficiency of God's Word is once again at the forefront of peoples' minds. We are hearing the rumblings of the sixteenth-century argument of truth versus error—the Reformation cry of "Sola Scriptura" . . . the Scriptures alone!
In recent years there has been much hullabaloo over the accord that was struck between the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the Roman Catholic Church. They announced that the issues of the Reformation are no longer divisive issues today.
Oh?
I read an issue of Newsweek magazine with the cover article featuring "The Meaning of Mary: A Struggle over Her Role Grows within the Church." The article read:
There is an incredible surge going on within the Catholic community to have a new dogma made. More than 100,000 signatures are arriving every month in Rome from people around the world who want to see Mary take the next step in a progression of promotions that began in 431, when she was given the title "Mother of God," to 1854, when she was declared sinless, to 1950, when she was declared to have been taken up bodily into heaven instead of dying. Now, the movement is gaining ground to have her formally declared Co-Redeemer.
The article explained that the late Pope John Paul was quite convinced that Mary is the co-redeemer of humanity. In one announcement he made in April, 1997, he postulated:
Having created man "male and female," the Lord also wants to place the New Eve beside the New Adam [the new Adam being Christ] in the Redemption. Mary, the New Eve, thus becomes a perfect icon of the church. We can therefore turn to the Blessed Virgin, trustfully imploring her aid in the singular role entrusted to her by God, the role of co-operator in the redemption.
What I found interesting is that Newsweek, although a secular magazine, had enough insight to reply, "This view seems to contradict the basic New Testament belief that there is one God and one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus (1 Timothy 2:5).
The core of the Reformation remains—what do the Scriptures say, and are they the final authority?
Whether it's our view of Mary, Purgatory, salvation by faith alone, or any other issue, the church today needs as much reform as it did in the 16th century, and our reformation cry must echo the cry of old: "Sola Scriptura" . . . the Scriptures alone!
God's Word is the only truth that teaches what is sufficient for faith and practice, and the only truth that answers the question, "What must I do to be saved?"
No matter what century we're in, there is no higher authority on earth than the Scriptures
. . . alone!
Prayer Point: Pray that God will renew your vigor for studying His Word. If the Bible has become just a collection of stories or characters to you, or a book that you open only on Sundays, pray that God will give you new eyes to see His truth, and a renewed mind to grasp it.
Extra Refreshment: 2 Timothy 3.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Fri 31 May 2013, 7:16 pm

Counting the Cost
Luke 14:27
"Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple."
You probably have never heard of Stephanie Stephenson, and I doubt you will ever hear about her again. Stephanie was a freshman music major at Southwest Missouri State University. Her teacher encouraged her to audition for the Broadway production of Les Miserables, to give her some acting experience. She traveled to Branson, Missouri, where the auditions were being held, and tried out with one hundred other women.
A few weeks later, Stephanie was shocked to receive a telephone call from the director in New York, asking her to come for a second audition. The applicants had been narrowed down to five women, and she was one of the five.
Stephanie had always dreamed of performing on Broadway. She talked it over with her parents, who were deeply committed Christians, as was she. They agreed that she could make the trip.
Another few weeks passed, and Stephanie was even more stunned to receive word that she had landed a role in Les Miserables. Without stage experience, and with the promise that she would later join the Broadway cast, Stephanie was sent to the touring production troupe for a year on the road, to sharpen her skills and gain exposure.
When parts were assigned for the first performance, she was given the role of a prostitute wearing a tawdry costume. Her angst was apparent; she struggled and made every excuse imaginable to justify playing the part. Finally, she sought the director and asked if she could be given a different part, but instead of finding a sympathetic ear, she was rebuffed and told, "It's just acting, and if you can't separate your personal life from the role, you'll never make it in this business."
Stephanie then appealed to the producer, but was given virtually the same answer: "Get over it . . . it's just a part . . . it's not really you . . . don't throw this opportunity away."
Stephanie ceased to plead, left the troupe, and walked away from her dream of a future on Broadway. After the young actress was gone, the associate director and executive producer of Les Miserable talked to the Associated Press about her decision to leave, making this comment: "She's gorgeous and she's talented and she could have played the daylights out of the role, probably to great acclaim on Broadway. But I respect what she did. She is a brave young girl to forgo an amazing career."
Knowing the cost of following Christ and yet willing to make the sacrifice, Stephanie Stephenson turned her back on the stage— relinquishing a promising career, the smell of grease paint, the glare of footlights, the excitement of curtain calls, the thrill of applause—and that's why you've never heard of her . . . but God has.
Prayer Point: Pray for God to reveal to you ways in which you may be compromising your faith for something else, whether it is a friend, a loved one, a job, or a hobby. Pray that God will give you the strength to turn your back, knowing that the joy He offers will be far greater than the object or person who is coming between you and Him.
Extra Refreshment: Luke 14.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Thu 30 May 2013, 8:02 pm

Living Dependently
Romans 12:5
So we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.
Unity is not achieved by everyone thinking alike, having the same preference in music, or reading from the same translation of the Bible. Neither is it based on personality, appearance, or social standing. Our unity is built upon the Church's body of truth—the Scriptures. And the Scriptures tell us that we are not to live independently of one another, but dependently, as members of a body. Paul emphasized this point when he said,
As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love (Eph. 4:14-16).
The question of whether or not someone else is performing his part in the body isn't yours to answer. The key question for you is, "Am I doing my part in building up the body in love?" When every part of the body does its job, the body is not disabled, but coordinated. This is true for the physical body, and is also true for the body of Christ, known as the Church.
If you don't have the use of an arm or leg, you may be in the category known as "Disabled" (or handicapped, in years gone by). In the same way, when a member of the Church cannot, or will not, function as he should, the church becomes disabled and handicapped in ministry. Those who join local churches but refuse to serve in them actually help to create a disabled body.
On the other hand, when members make the commitment to roll up their sleeves and humbly serve one another, the local church becomes more coordinated and more effective.
The truth is, we need each other. Just as eyes can't provide hearing and ears can't provide sight, you and I provide for the rest of the body the gifts which others lack. The Church is in need of what you as an individual bring to it, and there are no excuses for "sitting it out."
One pastor expressed it this way: "You cannot claim to love Jesus Christ and ignore His bride." God is serious about His Church because He purchased her with His precious blood.
If you are not involved in a local church—not using your gifts for the good of the whole body—then you've forgotten how vitally important you are to a healthy, coordinated Body or . . . you've grown complacent and lazy.
If you're faithfully serving the local body where God has placed you, then you're already experiencing the joys of providing "hearing" or "seeing" or "walking" capabilities for your church, and someone is dependent upon you.
All I have to say to you is . . . "Keep it up!"
Prayer Point: If you are uncertain as to how you can most effectively serve your local church, pray that God will reveal to you your strengths and weaknesses, as well as your giftedness. Then pray that He will give you a greater appreciation for the Church, knowing that it is the greatest way in which He is working in the world today.
Extra Refreshment: 1 Corinthians 12.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Wed 29 May 2013, 9:07 pm

The God of All Comfort
2 Corinthians 1:3-4
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.
My wife and I had the privilege of meeting Joni Erickson Tada, the Christian author who was paralyzed from the neck down as a young lady. In the early years after her diving accident, she wrote about coming to terms with the fact that God's plan for her life was to remain paralyzed.
In one of her books, A Step Further, she wrote:
On a rainy afternoon in the early summer of 1972, about fifteen people gathered in a tiny oak church not far from my home. The group consisted of close friends, family, and church leaders whom I had called together to pray for my healing. By the time our brief service was over, the rain had stopped. Exiting through the front doors of the church, we were greeted by a beautiful rainbow in the misty distance. It gave me just one more reassurance that God had heard our prayers. God had indeed heard . . . but He did not heal.
Those who have heard Joni speak have been struck by the peace of Christ that emanates from her face and through her testimony. She is an example to us all of the fact that we can trust God even when times are hard. She has devoted the remainder of her life to reminding believers that, even when God chooses to give sickness instead of health, His plan is always perfect. Even when it doesn't feel good, His will is always perfect.
During my college years I had a friend who went on a hike one night with a group of adventurous young people. Unable to see clearly what lay ahead, he literally walked off the edge of a steep cliff. Though he survived the fall, he was paralyzed from the waist down.
Today Scott Mitchell is the founding pastor of a thriving church in Atlanta, Georgia, believing that, if it hadn't been for that fall, he would not be the man he is today. He now spends his life and ministry sharing with suffering believers the comfort he experienced from God during that trial.
Paul says in 2 Corinthians that this is the very reason for some of our afflictions—that we may be able to comfort others who are afflicted. Therefore the question we should ask during times of suffering is not, "Lord, will You please get me out of this?" but, "Lord, will You show me who I can help through this?"
Everyone in the world is suffering in some way, but not everyone has experienced the comfort that God offers in the midst of it. Follow the examples of Paul, Joni Erickson Tada, and my friend, Scott, who made the decision to use their afflictions for good . . . to comfort others.
Prayer Point: Consider an area of trial in your own life, whether it is physical illness, emotional pain, family strife, etc., and thank the Lord for allowing you to go through it. Then pray that God will bring someone across your path who is going through a similar trial and needs comforting.
Extra Refreshment: 2 Corinthians 1.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Tue 28 May 2013, 10:16 pm

Run for Your Life!
Genesis 4:7
"If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted up? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it."
It was late summer when Sir Ernest Shackleton left England with twenty-seven men, bound for Antarctica . They set sail on the HMS Endurance, initially built to carry polar bear hunting parties into the Arctic. Sir Ernest had first been to the Antarctic in 1901; in 1907, he led his own expedition in a failed attempt to be the first to cross the continent. This time he was determined to succeed! They left the last port of call December 5, 1914.
Reaching pack ice (the top layer of frozen sea) on December 11, the ship was unable to make more than thirty miles a day. It was still summer in the Southern Hemisphere, but by mid-January the ice closed in and froze around the ship, causing it to rotate with the floes in a circular pattern around the Weddell Sea. Early May the sun slipped behind the horizon for the last time that year, plunging the ship and its crew into complete darkness.
Winter on the Endurance was cold and still; the men shot seals to supplement their rations, using the thick blubber for cooking fuel. In August the first sounds of pressure were heard as the floes began to break up. Initially the ship was fine, but as millions of tonnes of pressure came against her, the bow split on October 27. After pumping and bailing, the order to abandon ship was given forty-eight hours later, 210 miles from land.
On November 21, 1915, the HMS Endurance sank slowly beneath the ice. Survival, rather than crossing the Antarctic, became the aim of Shackleton and his crew. Their hardships are legendary and their perseverance admirable; on the morning of May 22, 1916, six men from the expedition walked into a whaling station—522 days since setting sail. And after three frustrating attempts, the remainder of the party was rescued August 30, 1916, seventeen months without contact from the outside world.
One author drew these comparisons between Shackleton's ice prison and sin:
• Sin will take you farther than you ever wanted to go.
• Sin will keep you longer than you ever wanted to stay.
• Sin will cost you more than you ever wanted to pay.
History records a rather profound journal entry during that period: "The ship is pretty near the end and what the ice gets . . . the ice keeps."
What a great analogy to sin! What sin gets, it keeps. God told Cain in Genesis 4: "Sin is crouching at your door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it."
So, how do we master sin? How do we keep from floating farther and farther away from spiritual safety? Paul answers these questions with practical advice in 2 Timothy 2:22. He tells young Timothy to "flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness." Flirting with sin may not take your life, but it will take everything else it possibly can!
It's interesting that Paul never advised Timothy to battle his lusts—to stand and fight against them. Instead, he said, "Run for your life . . . flee!"
If sin is lurking at your door, keep it closed! Move to another location as quickly as you can . . . and don't leave a forwarding address.
Prayer Point: If you are trapped in sin today, you can rid yourself of it right now. 1 John 1:9 says: "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and cleanse us from all unrighteousness." It's far better to 'fess up to Christ, than to face up to the consequences.
Extra Refreshment: Read Genesis 39—a vivid picture of what it means to run for your life!
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Mon 27 May 2013, 8:55 pm

Constantly Abiding
John 15:9
"Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love."
When you desire God; when you talk to Him in prayer; when you privately meditate on His Word; when you relate the events of life to Him; when you praise Him for His delights and His discipline—you are abiding in Him.
If you are a father, you never had to sit down with your son and say, "Okay, son, I want you to watch carefully how I walk, and then I want you to imitate me." No—he shuffles along in your shadow of his own will.
As a mother, you didn't have to tell your daughter to watch you put on make-up or arrange your hair style. Oh, no—she's already sneaked into your room and tried it out for herself! Kids don't need formal lessons to pick up on the way you do things. They learn it by simply abiding with you, by watching you, by imitating you.
It was Dr. Alexander Graham Bell who advised the parents of a little girl named Helen to send for a teacher from the Perkins Institution for the Blind in Boston, Massachusetts. Johanna Sullivan had graduated as valedictorian of her class, triumphing over her impoverished past—her mother's death when Anne was eight years old; her abusive father's abandonment two years later; four years in the state almshouse, where her only sibling died. Life for the nineteen- year-old had been difficult. A year after her graduation, she was chosen for the task of instructing six-year-old Helen Keller, a blind deaf-mute. Anne's success was monumental.
After weeks of arduous work, Helen was able to realize that the sign language letters Annie pressed into her hand spelled the name of objects. Two years later, Helen was reading and writing Braille fluently. At the age of ten, she learned different sounds by placing her fingers on her teacher's throat and feeling the vibrations. When Helen went to college, Annie Sullivan spelled every lecture into Helen's hand. While Helen earned the degree, Annie received a college education, too.
When Annie died in 1936, after fifty years of companionship to Helen, the sorrowing woman wrote these endearing words about the person who had become her eyes, her ears, and her mouth:
My teacher is so near to me that I scarcely think of myself apart from her. I feel that her being is inseparable from my own, and that the footsteps of my life are in hers. All the best of me belongs to her—there is not a talent or an inspiration or a joy in me that has not been awakened by her loving touch.
In many ways, what Anne Sullivan was for Helen Keller, Jesus Christ wants to be for us. He desires to be our eyes, our ears, our mouth. He promises to be our friend who sticks closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24), but we must be dependent upon Him . . . as dependent as Helen Keller was on Anne Sullivan.
When we abide [dwell, stay, continue] in Christ, people will see the evidence written all over us. We will imitate His character and share His perspective.
Abiding in Christ is not a list of rules—it is a way of life . . . for the Christian.
Prayer Point: Seek the Lord right now as you would your closest friend. Cry out to Him with your distresses and afflictions; thank Him for His many blessings, and praise Him for always being a faithful companion, even in the times when you are not.
Extra Refreshment: Read Psalm 27.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Sat 25 May 2013, 10:22 pm


The Guise of Godliness
1 Samuel 16:7
But the LORD said to Samuel, "Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart."
I have never had a State Highway patrolman stop me and say, "Sorry to bother you, sir, but I just wanted to commend you for coming to a complete stop at that stop sign back there . . . here's fifty dollars—have a nice day!"
Nor have I been pulled over by an officer who said to me: "Hey, I noticed you were keeping the speed limit even when you were going down that steep hill. I thought that was pretty remarkable of you to do that, so I want to give you these gift certificates to the Mall . . . so long!"
This will probably never happen . . . you think?
Truth is, those who abide by the law will often be viewed by men as the "godly" ones. It happened in Jesus' day with the Pharisees and Sadducees; they deceived men, as well as themselves, into thinking that their own good works were enough to make them righteous before a Holy God. They fully expected God to shower them with gift certificates to the bazaar!
Although it is important to obey the law, it isn't the real test of godliness. Actually, it's possible for you to keep the speed limit and still be an ungodly person. It's possible to stop at all the stop signs, hold the door for women, chew with your mouth closed, clock-in to work five minutes early every morning, and perform good deeds galore—and still be completely unholy in your heart.
Although everyone may sing your praises, the question is: what does God see when He looks at your heart?
God reminded Samuel in 1 Samuel 16:7 that man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart. Even today, God is the only one who sees past the gimmicks—the facade, the clothes, the make-up—directly into the heart of every person.
The encouragement of this truth rests in the fact that, because God sees the secret intents and motives of every person's heart, He actually does reward those who keep their hearts pure. Though the world may often get it wrong and may praise deceptive people, God never will.
The world rewards people of influence; God rewards people of integrity . . . and our reward is just ahead.
Prayer Point: Expose your heart before God and ask Him to cleanse you of all the things you have done recently for the eyes of men, rather than the eyes of God.
Extra Refreshment: Read Matthew 6:1-24.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Thu 23 May 2013, 10:33 pm

Bar the Gates!
Romans 6:13
Do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.
John Bunyan, one of history's greatest Christian authors, wrote the story of a fierce battle to take control of a city from its rightful ruler. This famous allegory, Bunyan's second most popular work, is entitled The Holy War. His depiction of the human soul is a city, Mansoul, with five gates: Ear Gate, Eye Gate, Nose Gate, Feel Gate, and Mouth Gate.
The enemy of the city is Sin, who comes on a daily basis to attack at one of its five gates. Sin speaks to the Ear Gate; he presents vivid, alluring pictures to the Eye Gate; he tempts the other "Gates" as well.
The interesting thing about this battle is that Mansoul could never be defeated by outside attacks, and Sin could never win in his assaults against the five gates . . . except in one way: someone on the inside had to open one of the gates and let Sin in.
In reality, these five gates are not Bunyan's allegorical creations at all—they are for real! Bunyan had grasped what both Paul and Peter understood: that the soul of man is destroyed from the inside, not the outside.
This is why Paul urged the believers to stop presenting their members to sin. The word presenting in this verse is a military term, used in the transferring of weaponry or arms. Paul was actually saying, "Don't let the enemy use your body as his weapon. Don't let the enemy have your rifle or your sword so he can use it against you! Don't leave yourself unarmed . . . don't open the gates!"
Unquestionably, you cannot be a holy child of God while allowing your eyes to feast on unholy scenes. Most of today's new film releases contain scenes of adultery or fornication. It is a fact, according to recent statistics, that over ninety percent of all sexual content in the average film is between unmarried people or people who are married to someone else.
If you choose to watch sin on the big screen, whether in a theater or your family room, you have just opened the Eye Gate and invited Sin to come in.
If Sin can't get through one gate, he will try another. So, what are the lyrics to your favorite songs, and the lifestyle of your favorite artists? Most secular music today is filled with the same perversion that you see on the screen; merely listening to it may be as deadly as watching it . . . keep the Ear Gate closed!
You are in a Holy War, Christian, just as John Bunyan said. And you may be your own worst enemy! Sin is pounding at each Gate, but he can only come in if you allow him entrance. Sin can't win the battle from the outside.
Don't betray your Mansoul! By all means, reinforce the boundaries . . . fortify the walls . . . bar the Gates!
Prayer Point: Thank God for His available strength to enable your battle against the onslaught of sin. Ask Him to bring to mind any area of your senses where you might be allowing sin to gain entrance into the city of your soul. Confess the treason against His holiness and ask Him for strength to close the Gate and lock it tight.
Extra Refreshment: Read 2 Peter 3.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Wed 22 May 2013, 8:19 pm

Set Apart
1 Peter 2:9
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God's own possession.
The word sanctification is a common word in the New Testament. It relates to the transforming work of the Holy Spirit in our hearts, minds, and lives, to conform us to the character of Jesus Christ. The simpler definition of sanctification comes from the Greek word, meaning set apart.
The concept is not hard to grasp, as I'm sure you have things in your home that are sanctified—set apart for a particular use. I know I do. My wife's butcher knives were not to be used as swords when my children were younger, pretending to be knights of the Middle Ages. My golf clubs were not meant for hitting rocks and acorns . . . wonder what gave them that idea . . . ?
Some things are set apart for a distinct purpose and shouldn't be used for anything else. The truth is, your life, which has been bought by the precious blood of the King, happens to be set apart for a distinct purpose: to bring glory to God through lives marked by godly living.
When little Victoria Guelph learned at the age of eleven that she was next in line for the British throne, historians tell us that she burst into tears. Then upon regaining composure, she said with great conviction and purpose, "If I am to be queen, then I shall be good."
What a remarkable resolution! Even at the tender age of eleven, Victoria recognized something that many Christians never quite grasp—the principle of sanctification. Victoria determined with passion and conviction that her practice would live up to her position. When told that she would wear the crown as Queen of England, she determined to exercise a godly lifestyle worthy of her crown.
You are more like the royalty of England than you thought—having believed in Jesus Christ for salvation, you are royalty! Peter calls you a chosen race and a royal priesthood, which means that you are the highest order in God's kingdom.
But the question is, have you resolved to live up to it? Are you exercising the kind of character worthy of the crown of life?
Today there is a dire need in our churches for people who will say with conviction, "Since I am headed for a future throne as fellow heir and ruler with Christ in heaven, I will live up to my position while on earth. Because of who I am in Christ, I will determine to live for Christ."
Anything less will become like a dull butcher knife or a splintered golf club—fairly useless in performing the task it was distinctly set apart to accomplish. In God's kingdom, we are chosen vessels to do His work for His glory . . . so, sanctify yourself.
Prayer Point: Ask God to help you identify areas of your life which are not set apart for Him. Take time to carefully think through your daily, weekly, and monthly activities. Are there any that are not consistent with your position "in Christ"? Commit those areas to Him, asking God to sanctify you . . . completely.
Extra Refreshment: Read Romans 8.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Tue 21 May 2013, 8:58 pm

The Peacemaker
John 16:33
"These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world."
No matter the efforts, the world and its inhabitants are unable to attain peace. In the last five thousand years, there have been at least 14,000 wars. In the past four centuries alone, the Western world has entered into 8,000 peace treaties—each one averaging a two-year "life expectancy."
One author put it best when he said peace was only a period of time when everyone stopped to reload! Humorous though it may be, the world seems to use the interludes between wars to gear up for the next round of conflict.
It isn't any wonder to us that Isaiah, in his prophetic book of the Bible, called Jesus Christ the "Prince of Peace." Christ is the one and only remedy for a violent and corrupt world, and He has promised to be that remedy to all who believe on His name. So why do people refuse Him? If they want peace so badly, why won't they reach out and take it?
Why? Simply because the world wants peace without the Prince!
The prophet Jeremiah decried the lack of peace in his own generation, as people sought their own solutions apart from God. In chapter 6:10-14, he wrote,
". . . Behold, their ears are closed and they cannot listen. Behold, the word of the Lord has become a reproach to them; they have no delight in it . . . For from the least of them even to the greatest of them, everyone is greedy for gain, and from the prophet even to the priest everyone deals falsely. They have healed the brokenness of My people superficially, saying, ‘Peace, peace,' but there is no peace."
In other words, "Everyone in my generation and among my people is consumed with greed. They desire more and more gain, and all of them, from the leadership down, are living deceitful lives—lying to one another, deceiving one another, and deceiving themselves in the process."
This is the grim portrait of society—Jeremiah's and ours.
People talk about peace, but they don't have it. They patch things together for a few weeks or months, but it doesn't last very long. That's because they have rejected the Prince—the only One capable of providing peace on earth.
The world hasn't changed much since Jeremiah's day. Men still reject God and His Word, making small talk about peace but never experiencing the real thing. World leaders can hold one peace summit after another, sign peace treaties repeatedly, and pass as many resolutions in the UN as can be voted, but the problem will never be solved.
Peace comes to those who have surrendered to the Prince of Peace—Jesus Christ, and have crowned Him ruler of their lives. To them He gives His peace . . . even in the midst of a warring world.
Prayer Point: Simply thank the Lord for His peace which passes all understanding—a peace that many in the world will never experience because they have rejected the Savior. Then pray that you will be a better servant of Christ, your Prince, and your service will overflow to others.
Extra Refreshment: Read Psalm 29.
Dirty Kisses
Romans 6:1-2
What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?
A pastor wrote a rather interesting article in a minister's journal; it dealt with a problem in the bathroom of a middle school in Oregon. Girls were setting the precedent of pressing their lips to the mirrors after applying lipstick, leaving dozens of messy lip prints all over the glass.
When the principal declared that something must be done, she devised a rather ingenious plan and told the custodian exactly what to do. After summoning the girls and the custodian to the bathroom, the principal explained that the lip prints were causing a major problem for the custodian, and instructed that the girls stop the nasty practice that wasted his valuable time.
Of course, the girls were oblivious to this request and were irritated at having to meet with the principal—they didn't even try to hide it. Not being deterred, the principal continued with her scheme, and asked the custodian to show them how he had been cleaning the mirrors each day after school.
He promptly took out his long-handled brush, dipped it into one of the nearby toilets, and scrubbed the mirrors with the brush. The girls' mouths dropped open in shock. Not surprisingly, since that demonstration, the lip prints have never reappeared!
There is a valuable lesson to be learned from this story. Although sin may seem as innocent and harmless as kissing a mirror, we are often unaware of the vile and evil things lurking on the periphery—waiting to wreak havoc in our lives.
Have you ever said this to your kids: "Don't let that dog lick you on your face—you have no idea where she's been!" I try to warn them, but they never seem to connect the dots. In my case, I know whereof I speak—or should I say warn. We have a dog who loves nasty, yucky stuff! Whenever she gets loose in the horse pasture beyond our backyard fence, she rolls around in the grass—filth and all—just for fun. I watch her in utter disgust, but she pays no attention to my opinion of her personal hygiene.
You see, my dog has a serious problem with the way she thinks! Maybe that's okay for her . . . she's a dog . . . but for Christians to roll around in the filth of sin and thoroughly enjoy it is a completely different matter. There is something dreadfully wrong with the heart of a Christian who enjoys kissing dirty mirrors.
Paul warns the believer in this text "Don't call yourself a Christian if you are going to continue in a lifestyle of sin! Have you forgotten who you are? You are a child of the King—start acting like it!"
Paul is not saying that we will never sin, or that we will never fall at times, because we will. He is referring to people who love sin more than God. These are so-called Christians who overlook the passages in the Bible about refraining from deceit, pride, sexual immorality, slander, bitterness, and more, while holding on to their sin, rather than upholding God's standard.
Paul's point is simple: Christians have been saved from sin; they should refrain from "kissing" the world . . . including mirrors and dogs!
Prayer Point: Confess any sin that has been lingering in your spirit, whether it has been there for a few hours, months, or years. Pray the prayer of the psalmist who asked God to "search my heart and see if there be any wicked way in me, and blot it out."
Extra Refreshment: Read Romans 6
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Fri 17 May 2013, 10:09 pm

Using Your Quota
James 3:8-10
But no one can tame the tongue; it is a restless evil and full of deadly poison. With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God; from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way.
Psychologists have estimated that we have 700 opportunities to speak every week; with those opportunities, we construct 12,000 sentences, speak up to 50,000 words, and author a 150-page book. Did you get that?—every week! That is an astounding number!
But there is a great danger unexpressed in this statistic. If James says that our mouth is "full of deadly poison," and we are opening our mouth 700 times a week, imagine how much damage is spewed forth without our even realizing it!
In America we are constantly reminded of our right to "free speech," but this right is never given to us in Scripture. Rather, the Bible warns us of the danger of using our words flippantly. James 1:26 says, "If anyone thinks himself to be religious, and yet does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this man's religion is worthless."
In other words, James is saying that the 700 words we speak every week are indicators of our walk with Christ. If we are claiming to love God, yet all the while poisoning our brothers with thoughtless, cruel, or malicious words, we are only deceiving ourselves.
This story graphically illustrates the danger of speaking careless words. A young man living in ancient Greece had said something very harsh to one of his friends, later discovering that what he had said wasn't true. He went to his wise teacher and asked, "Master, I hurt my neighbor with my words; what can I do to right this wrong?" His teacher said, "Find a sack and fill it with feathers. Tonight after everyone has retired, go around the village and put a feather on each doorstep."
The young man was confused but obeyed the master's command. When he had finished and returned to his home, he lay in bed and pondered the meaning of the task. Tossing and turning all night, he could not make sense of it. The next morning he ran to his teacher and declared, "Master, I've done what you've said. Now what do I do?"
His teacher responded, "Get your sack, go back to each doorstep—and retrieve every feather." The young man retorted, "That is impossible! There is no way I can retrieve every feather. The wind has come during the night, people have been walking, animals have been moving, and the feathers will have been scattered by now."
The teacher then explained, "The same is true with your words. They were very easy to speak, but they are impossible to retrieve."
Fifty thousand words a week; 200,000 words a month; 2,400,000 words a year—that is the number of "feathers" we scatter, sometimes without thinking how far they will drift. We must develop the habit of thinking and praying before speaking, or we may deceive ourselves and destroy others around us.
And James reminds believers . . . "these things ought not to be."
Prayer Point: Ask God to bring to your mind someone you may have hurt by your words, whether in the past week, month, or even this year; confess your sin to God. Then, as an extension of that confession, go to the person you harmed and ask for forgiveness.

Extra Refreshment: Read Proverbs 12.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Fri 17 May 2013, 10:07 pm

Let the Confession Begin!
Proverbs 28:13
He who conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will find compassion.
The term "priorities" used to be referred to only in the singular form—priority. It was "set your priority straight," not priorities. Today we have many priorities, and I'm afraid we're a lot like Ray Kroc, the founder of McDonald's. When asked by The New York Times what he believed in, he responded by saying, "God, my family, and McDonald's hamburgers." Afterwards he added, "And when I get to the office, I reverse the order."
The problem is a universal one, and all humans, whether Christian or not, will be forced to deal with it. It is a problem called pride; we not only deceive others by it—we deceive ourselves.
This is how it usually comes down: because of pride, you go to church on Sunday and look and act like a Christian—everyone thinks you're an upright citizen. Then, like Ray Kroc, you go to your workplace on Monday and look and act like an unbeliever—your co-workers think you're an okay guy. In reality, you're the farthest thing from either description!
"Confession is the road to healing," as one songwriter once said, and it is the cure to self-deception. We all would like to think that we're good people, or at least better than average—certainly not as bad as the other guy! The truth is, just because we're saved doesn't mean we're perfect.
Consider the examples God gives us in His Word: Old Testament figures were saved by their faith in the promise of the coming Messiah: Noah, Abraham, Jacob, Moses, Samson, David, and many others. In the New Testament, there is one who stands out from all who followed Christ: Simon Peter. These men of God faltered in their walk of faith—floundered in the sea of sin—failed God, themselves, and others. Yet . . . all repented and regained their testimonies with God and men, and six of them are listed in the Bible's "Hall of Faith" chapter, Hebrews 11.
Perhaps the world has to see us admit our sins and confess our wrong doings before they will be able to see their own need for confession and repentance. Christ died for sinners, and when sinners who have been saved reach out to sinners who are still lost, conversions will be the result.
Some people will hate us because of our message, as Christ promised in the gospel of John, but others will come to Christ through our transparency and love.
The point is simple—don't be a Pharisee. Never stop confessing your sin to God and to others, and never stop telling the world of their need for Christ's love and mercy, for "all have sinned and have fallen short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23) . . . and that includes you.
Prayer Point: Confess your sins to God right now, and ask Him to reveal the people to whom you need to make reconciliation. Then, pray for humility to confess your wrong, knowing that God is glorified when you do.
Extra Refreshment: Read Psalm 51—David's prayer of confession after sinning greatly against the Lord.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Wed 15 May 2013, 8:59 pm

Comforting Arms
Matthew 5:4
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
There is a vivid memory etched in my mind—a day when one of my sons hugged a tree in our back yard. The tree had a "ladder" of nails driven into it, and he used them for climbing. I was about fifty yards away, watching and admiring the athletic prowess of my son, as he hung from the first branch eight feet from the ground. But his foot slipped off the nail and I saw his body swivel around to the other side of the tree.
As he held on to the trunk with one arm and wrapped a leg around the tree, he yelled for help. I began walking toward the tree, but in his moment of distress, he didn't wait for me to arrive. Typical of the very young, he hadn't yet discovered that sometimes it hurts more to let go than to hang on, so—he released his hold on the branch. He slid down the trunk and skinned himself on every nail protruding from the tree. A long bloody gash stretched from his waist to his chest.
He hit the ground, immediately bounded up, and came running. His feet were moving so fast that he even fell once as he ran. When he reached me, he leapt into my arms and began to wail. I just held him and hugged him, because I knew he was experiencing more pain than he had ever felt before. Although I am not a great father—in fact, sometimes, I'm not even a good father—I did what comes naturally to any parent witnessing his child in pain . . . I comforted him.
Why is it that we think God will do any less for His children? Why is it that we think God groans when He sees us coming to Him in pain? We assume He is thinking, "Oh, no . . . you're hurt again?" If we, as fallen, sinful, earthly parents can comfort our children in times of distress, whatever the cause, how much more will our perfect heavenly Father comfort us in our distress—whatever the cause?
The word for comfort in Matthew 5:4 is not sympathy, which means to feel with, or empathy, which means to have experienced the same thing and feel with, but a combination of two Latin words which mean to put strength in; to infuse with power.
This means that God doesn't just pat us on the back when we are in mourning; He gives us what we need to endure the pain of sadness. It's as David said in Psalm 138:3, "On the day I called, You answered me; You made me bold with strength in my soul."
Have you fallen from any trees lately? God will lift you up—blood, tears and all. So go ahead . . . wail to Him in your sorrow; cry to Him in your distress; jump into His arms of healing.
Your Father is waiting to hold you close to Him. Then you will learn what Christ meant when He said, "Blessed are those who mourn . . . for they shall be comforted."
Prayer Point: Perhaps you are bleeding today from some emotional gash, and are in need of a giant "bear-hug" from God. Be encouraged, friend! God says in Scripture that you can cast your cares upon Him because He cares for you. No matter how great or small your concern, God will give you the strength to deal with it.
Extra Refreshment: Read 1 Peter 5.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Wed 15 May 2013, 12:39 am



The Right Answer
Romans 10:9-10
If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.
In 1955, a dance instructor and manager of an Arthur Murray Studio in Tampa had wearily turned in just before dawn on Sunday morning, after an almost-all-night dance party. He set his clock radio to awaken him to music at the appointed time, but was jarred wide awake by a voice that sounded as if it were thundering right out of heaven. It was the weekly broadcast of Dr. Donald Grey Barnhouse, a Philadelphia pastor and one of the first great radio evangelists.
Jim got out of bed to change the station, but before he reached the radio, the preacher stopped him with a question that set him back on the edge of the bed: "Suppose that you were to die today and stand before God, and He were to ask you, ‘What right do you have to enter into My heaven?'—what would you say?"
Jim was dumbfounded! He continued to listen to the explanation of the plan of redemption through faith in Christ—a message he had never heard before. On that remarkable Sunday afternoon, Jim made the transition from presumption to truth. He had presumed that he was good enough to make it into heaven; he didn't realize that he was calling God a liar—God, who says, "There is none good, no not one." He knew he would never make it!
That week he stopped by a corner newsstand and asked if they sold religious books. The owner had only one, The Greatest Story Ever Told. Each night Jim read a portion, and when he completed the book, it seemed as if the cross of Christ had been erected right in his apartment. He slipped out of his chair onto his knees and asked Christ to come into his heart and forgive him and cleanse him of his sins . . . he found the answer.
By the way, Jim's name was D. James Kennedy. He was founder and pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, founder of Knox Theological Seminary, as well as the international evangelism ministry called "Evangelism Explosion," training people in every country of the world, showing them how to share the gospel, asking that famous question.
What would your answer be today? Why do you think you're going to heaven? What right do you have to ever think you could live for eternity in the presence of God's glory? Do you have an answer?
There is only one way. You must travel on that bridge fashioned in the form of an old rugged cross—the eternal bridge between earth and heaven, between corruption and consummation, between religion and redemption. This is the bridge built by our Redeemer, and no religious acts or good deeds will allow you to walk across it. Heaven is on the other side for all who are willing to come by Christ's finished work alone.
If you have already believed in Christ for salvation, then ask yourself this question: "God is at work in the world around me; am I taking part in it? Is there someone in my life to whom I should pose this life-changing, eternity-destined question? If so, what are you waiting for?
Today is someone's day of salvation; go . . . ask the question!
Prayer Point: We have been offered the most precious gift by our Savior, Jesus Christ. As Romans 12:1 says, it is our "reasonable service" to give our lives completely to Him in response to His mercy. Ask God to begin to show you, through prayer and the reading of His Word, how you can best take part in the work of spreading the gospel.
Extra Refreshment: Read 1 Timothy 1—a reminder that God saves sinners, not good people.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Mon 13 May 2013, 9:24 pm

Why Pray?
Psalm 86:6-7
Give ear, O LORD, to my prayer; and give heed to the voice of my supplications! In the day of my trouble I shall call upon You, for You will answer me.
R. A. Torrey, a former president of Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, once wrote ten powerful reasons why believers should pray:
There is a devil and prayer is the God-appointed means of resisting him.
Prayer is God's way for us to obtain what we need from Him.
The apostles, whom God set forth to be a pattern for us, considered prayer to be the most important business of their lives.
Prayer occupied a prominent place and played a very important part in the earthly life of our Lord.
Prayer is the most important part of the present ministry of our Lord, since He is now interceding for us.
Prayer is the means God has appointed for our receiving mercy from Him and obtaining grace to help in time of need.
Prayer is the means of obtaining the fullness of God's joy.
Prayer with thanksgiving is the means of obtaining freedom from anxiety, and in anxiety's place is peace which passes understanding.
Prayer is the means by which we are to keep watchful and be alert at Christ's return.
Prayer is used by God to promote our spiritual growth, bring power into our work, lead others to faith in Christ, and bring all other blessings to Christ's church.

In other words, the question should not be why should we pray, but how can we afford not to pray?
Just look at that list! It is not exhaustive, by the way. All one needs to do is look into a few of the Psalms to find that prayer should be the most vital part of a believer's life. Just as a wife cannot have a good relationship with her husband without speaking, so also a believer cannot have a good relationship with God if there is no communication. Prayer is how we talk to God, and His Word is how He speaks to us.
It baffles me how shallow our view of prayer has become in the church today. Think about our own perspective: when there is a crisis with a family member—a child is rushed to ICU; your father has a heart attack; your sibling is experiencing depression—what is the first thing that believers often say in these circumstances? "Well, I guess all I can do now is pray."
I can't tell you how many times I've heard that in these past few years; I've said it myself. I don't know where this "last-resort" idea comes from, but it is terribly wrong.
Prayer isn't the last thing—it's the best thing that you and I could ever do for anyone.
He's listening . . . are you praying?
Prayer Point: 1 Peter 5 says to "cast our anxiety upon the Lord, for He cares for us." Thank God for never turning a deaf ear to your call to Him, and for always listening to your supplication.
Extra Refreshment: Read John 17—the prayer of Jesus.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Fri 10 May 2013, 9:18 pm

Saved from the Flames
1 John 4:10
In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
I will never forget reading about a Midwestern fire that swept across the prairie, devastating crops, houses, and everything else that lay in its path. It ravaged without warning, leaving families and homesteads in ruin. Only one family was unharmed, and this is their story.
They had seen the smoke coming from a distance and knew they could never outrun it. The father grabbed a brand from the hearth and set their own field afire, lighting smaller fires in patches along the surrounding area. The wind fanned the flames and carried them a mile or so ahead of the on-coming prairie fire. He loaded his family into the wagon and then drove into the middle of their burned-out field . . . and they waited.
Within minutes, the great wall of fire reached the edge of their field. Finding nothing to burn, it merely licked its way along the outer edges. Ultimately, the massive wall of flames met at the back of the field and continued downwind with a fury.
They were safe!
Why? Because they were standing on ground that had already been burned. It had withstood the fire and could not be burned again. It had become this family's propitiation.
Do you know why you will never have to face the wrath of God in fiery judgment? Because you stand in Christ—He is your propitiation. Against Him, the wrath of God has already burned, and for us who are in Him, the fire of God will never burn again. John tells us why God did this for us in 1 John 4:10: "In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins."
We come to Christ as our Propitiator, not because of something we did or some measure of worth that we had in ourselves, but because of what He did on the cross and because of His eternal worth as God the Son.
There is a coming firestorm that will sweep up those who have not accepted the propitiatory work of Christ. It is a place called hell; in it, the wrath of God will burn against all those not standing in the finished work of Christ.
For those who have placed their faith in Christ, they are forever safe from that flame. Because of the cross, which is stained with the perfect blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, God's judgment for sin has been fully satisfied.
The wall of flames has passed away for those who are in Christ . . . there is no need to fear.
Prayer Point: Thank Jesus for drinking the cup of God's wrath that you deserved, and for standing in the way of the fire that was headed for your doorstep. Thank Him for a love so great that He was willing to die on the cross.
Extra Refreshment: Read all of 1 John 4.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Thu 09 May 2013, 9:37 pm

The Gospel . . . and a Cup of Tea
"For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many."
Sam Kamaleson, the vice president of a worldwide mission organization, told a tremendous story of a seventy-year-old lady who came to faith in Christ.
Like many newly-converted believers, her desire was to serve God in any way possible, but she had one troubling question for which she had no answer: how could she best be used in God's service? She eventually approached her pastor with the dilemma and said, "I believe God has called me into some sort of ministry; what should I do?" Since he had no idea what might suit her, he replied, "Maybe you should go home and pray about it." Now, this is Pastoring 101—if you don't know the answer, suggest prayer!
After returning home, she followed her pastor's advice, and sensed that God wanted her to do something to reach students who attended a nearby university. Thinking of how to connect with them, she hurried to the drugstore, bought a pack of 3x5 cards, and wrote on each one: "Are you homesick? Come to my home for tea at 4:00." Then she added her address.
She took her stack of cards and went around the University of Melbourne campus, putting them in places where students were sure to see them: bulletin boards, dining hall, restroom mirrors, car windshields—you name it. She went back home and began preparing tea. When four o'clock came, no one knocked at the door. Day after day, no one showed up. Instead of becoming discouraged, she continued to pray and prepare tea . . . just in case.
At last, on the fifteenth day, an Indonesian student was at her door, homesick and as eager to talk as she was to listen. Excitedly she served tea and gave him a listening ear as he intently told his story.
When he returned to campus, he told all his friends, "Hey, you won't believe it! I met a lady that's just like my grandmother." The young man's visit was the beginning of other students going to her home at four o'clock for tea. Soon her house was filled with college kids eager to talk. What started as a simple God-given desire to minister to lost souls led to ten years of one-on-one ministry for a woman who sought God's direction in her service for Him.
When she died there were no less than seventy pallbearers, all of whom were Indonesian, Malaysian, Indian, and other international students who had come to her home for tea and conversation—and had found Jesus Christ.
Imagine that!
The moral of this story is simple: God has called you for a purpose, and you have been uniquely gifted for it. No matter what your limitations may be, God can use you to touch the lives of people who need Christ.
So, if it's putting on the kettle and setting out an extra cup—there are still people out there who are in desperate need of the gospel . . . and a cup of tea.
Prayer Point: Pray right now, just as that woman did, for an opportunity to share the gospel with someone else, or the opportunity to help a brother or sister in need. Ask the Lord to impress on your heart some specific way you can serve as an ambassador of heaven. Then thank the Lord for giving His life in service for you, setting the perfect example of humility and love.
Extra Refreshment: Read John 13:1-20.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Wed 08 May 2013, 1:12 pm

Saved and Assured
1 John 1:1-4
What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, concerning the Word of Life—and the life was manifested, and we have seen and testify and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was manifested to us—what we have seen and heard we proclaim to you also, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ. These things we write, so that our joy may be made complete.
Queen Victoria, sovereign of Great Britain from 1837-1901, attended worship in St. Paul's Cathedral and listened to a sermon that piqued her interest. After the message she asked her chaplain the question, "Can one be absolutely sure in this life of eternal safety?" His answer was, "No, there is no way that anyone can be absolutely sure."
This incident was published afterward in the Court News and came to the notice of a humble minister named John Townsend. After reading the Queen's question and the answer given, he prayed for wisdom, and felt compelled to send these words:
To Her Gracious Majesty, our beloved Queen Victoria, from one of your most humble subjects: With trembling hands, but heart-filled love, and because I know that we can be absolutely sure now for our eternal life in the home that Jesus went to prepare, may I ask Your Most Gracious Majesty to read the following passages of Scripture: John 3:16; Romans 10:9-10. I sign myself, your servant for Jesus' sake, John Townsend.
John Townsend took others into his confidence, and they offered up prayer to God on Her Majesty's behalf. About two weeks later, he received the following letter:
To John Townsend: I have carefully and prayerfully read the portions of Scripture referred to. I now believe in the finished work of Christ for me, and trust by God's grace, to meet you one day in that place He has prepared for us in heaven. Victoria Guelph
The Queen of England bowed her heart and surrendered her life to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords—the One whose majesty extends over all the earth. After she discovered the assurance of salvation through faith in Christ alone, she eventually carried copies of a small booklet to give to her subjects. Safety, Certainty, and Enjoyment contained the plan of salvation and the assurance that one could have in Christ. These were the very things she had discovered upon receiving the Truth.
My friend, don't be deceived by the wisdom of the present age, which says that truth cannot be known, and that material, scientific evidence must be obtained before anything can be proven. As John writes, the proof is in our hearts, and only those who have tasted the everlasting water which God has so freely offered (John 6) can be assured of its never-ending benefit.
Here are the facts: Jesus was born; He died; He rose again on the third day; He is living in the hearts of all those who trust in Him.
And the Apostle John says . . . of this we can be assured!
Prayer Point: Thank the Lord for writing down an eyewitness account of His ministry, His miracles, and His mission, so that "you may know that you have eternal life." Then, thank Him for giving you assurance in your heart, even when you are crippled by doubt.
Extra Refreshment: Read John 20—a passage where Christ proves His divinity by conquering death, and blesses those who have "believed in Him even though we have never seen Him."

The Bubbles Are Always Right
Proverbs 14:12
There is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.
I arrived on the Island of Malta while on a mission trip and stayed in a hotel which overlooked the Mediterranean Sea. The water was crystal clear and as I stood on the balcony, I could see the rocks at the bottom of the sea, shimmering as sunlight pierced the water.
There was a swimming pool near the edge of the water, and I watched scuba divers taking lessons and practicing the elements of the sport. Before ever venturing out into the Mediterranean, they safely mastered the basics in a pool.
As I watched them, I was reminded of one of my seminary classmates who was an avid scuba diver. He regaled me with his adventures on several occasions when we were together.
One insight from his experiences made a profound impact on me. I learned that when a diver was deep under water, he could lose all sense of direction. He becomes weightless—no sense of gravity—and swimming without a natural source of light causes him to become disoriented and swim sideways, thinking that he is rising to the top.
In fact, a diver can become so convinced that his perception is correct that he continues to swim in the wrong direction until he eventually runs out of air and drowns. My friend then said that the only way to keep this from happening is to follow the direction of your air bubbles. "No matter how you feel, or what your brain may tell you," he said, "the bubbles are always right."
The world today is like a group of scuba divers: disoriented and void of direction. Absolutely convinced that their perception of right and wrong is correct, they ignore the warnings, while the bubbles of truth tell them otherwise. Instead, they willfully follow the directions of other disoriented expert divers who say, "Live like this . . . believe like this . . . think this way . . . go that way"—and all the while their tanks are running out of oxygen.
According to the book The Day America Told the Truth, 74% of Americans think it is all right to steal from people who they believe will not really miss it; 64% believe it is acceptable to lie, as long as no one gets hurt; 93% say they decide moral issues by their own experience or opinion. Choosing to ignore the bubbles, they swim to their deaths.
The Word of God has been given to us that we may have direction for living. As Christians, we have no excuse for moving through life disoriented; the verses in Scripture are like the air bubbles from a diver—they show the way up.
Make sure you're swimming in the right direction . . . just follow the "bubbles"!
Prayer Point: Thank the Lord for showing you through His Word how to live a life that pleases Him, instead of leaving you on your own, disoriented, and on a path that leads to death.
Extra Refreshment: Read John 8:12-59.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Fri 03 May 2013, 9:20 pm


Salvation Is for Sinners
Mark 2:17
And hearing this, Jesus said to them, "It is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick; I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners."
Jacob Koshy grew up in Singapore with the ambition to become as rich and successful as he possibly could—the desire that ultimately led him into the world of drugs and gambling. In time, he reached his goal, becoming the leader of an international drug-smuggling network. But in 1980, that dream came to an abrupt end when he was caught, arrested, and detained in a government drug rehabilitation prison in Singapore.
Locked in a tiny cell, Jacob became frustrated and embittered. He wanted to smoke, but cigarettes were not allowed in the prison. Friends smuggled in tobacco and he rolled it in the pages of a Gideon Bible that had been left in his cell. One day he fell asleep while smoking and awoke to find that his homemade cigarette had burned out; all that remained was some charred paper. He unrolled the paper and read the words, "Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?"
Curiosity struck him and he asked the guard for a new Bible. Upon receiving it, he read the story of Saul's miraculous conversion. Immense joy overtook Jacob as he realized the truth of what he had read—if God could save an enemy like Saul, He could save him as well! Without wasting a second, he fell to his knees and prayed for God to forgive his sins. Tears flowed as the Lord heard his prayer and saved his soul.
Jacob began sharing his story with other prisoners; some of them accepted Christ as well. When he was released from prison, he became involved in a Bible-believing church, met and married a Christian woman, and together they began serving as missionaries in the Far East, sharing the gospel with sinners in desperate need of the Savior.
The value of the human soul is so precious that God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit devised a plan before the world was created: The Son of God would die to redeem fallen man. No matter what has happened to you, my friend, no matter what you have made of yourself, you can become whole again in the eyes of God.
It was Christ Himself who said, "I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners" . . . aren't we all? If you are lost in your sin today, there is good news: Christ died on the cross for people . . . people just like you.
Prayer Point: If you have never placed your faith in Jesus Christ for your salvation from sin, confess now and accept His free gift to you. If you are a believer, thank the Lord that, although you are a sinner who continually "falls short of His glory" everyday of your life, He never ceases to love you.
Extra Refreshment: Read Acts 9—the story that changed Jacob Koshy's life.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Thu 02 May 2013, 9:25 pm

Let the Wisdom Search Begin!
Proverbs 3:13-14
How blessed is the man who finds wisdom and the man who gains understanding. For her profit is better than the profit of silver and her gain better than fine gold.
Contrary to popular belief, wisdom is not an easy thing to attain. Like diamonds, you won't find it lying on top of the ground. It is something that many would like to have, but few ever mine the depths in order to discover where it lies.
I read a story of a young man who approached the great thinker, Aristotle, and asked him the profound question, "How can I have wisdom?" Aristotle smiled and replied, "Follow me."
The young man followed closely as they made their way down several streets, arriving at a shallow pool in the city square. Without any hesitation, Aristotle gathered up his robes and waded into the water. The young man stopped for a moment, but then followed him into the pool.
When both men were standing in the middle, Aristotle suddenly turned, grabbed the younger man by the neck, and pushed his head under the water. The student flailed with his arms, but to no avail. Aristotle was the stronger of the two, and he held the struggling lad's head beneath the surface. At the last possible moment, Aristotle pulled him up, dragged him over to the edge, and sat him down. Coughing and gasping for air, the student could hardly believe what had just occurred.
Unmoved by the young man's confusion and surprise, Aristotle simply asked him, "Young man, when I held you under the water, what did you want more than anything in the world?" He sputtered between coughs, "Air, sir . . . air!" Aristotle then responded, "When you want wisdom as badly as you wanted air, then you will find it," and he walked away.
The test for wisdom is: do you believe you can live without it? If it isn't as vital as food, shelter, or clothing—all of which can be purchased—it won't be found. Although you may desire it, you'll never find it. After a few scrapes with a shovel or pick, in search of this rare jewel, you'll never get much farther than scratching the surface before completely giving up.
The Bible is all about wisdom. Read Psalms, Proverbs, Ephesians, or Colossians, and you will find this word used repeatedly. Proverbs 2:7 tells us that wisdom is obeying God's commands and seeking to know His will; therefore, even believers can run low on wisdom! But when we first desire wisdom "as silver and hidden treasure" (Proverbs 2:4), and then ask God for it "who gives to all generously and without reproach" (James 1:5), as well as cherish what we find (Proverbs 3:5-6), we will become that rare person who not only pursues wisdom . . . but finds it.
Prayer Point: Ask the Lord to give you a longing for wisdom—that ability to discern between right and wrong—the quality of thinking that puts truth into action.
Extra Refreshment: Read Proverbs 8.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Wed 01 May 2013, 11:09 pm

A Dead-End Street
James 1:14-15
But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin, and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death.
I read of a couple who had been married thirty-five years, had three grown children who loved them dearly, and were blessed with financial resources. They were finally able to purchase a lakeside retirement home they had dreamed about for a long time. Put on the market by a widower, it was the perfect place.
Before the offer to buy was finalized, the woman had a change of heart and direction. In fact, life would dramatically change for both the owner of the lake house and the prospective buyers. It seems the wife wanted a divorce—not the retirement home. Her husband, feeling a surge of confusion and anger sweep over him, shouted, "How could you be planning something like this... after all this time... when we're so close to buying our dream home... after thirty-five years?"
She explained that she hadn't been planning a long time to ask for the divorce—it had been a recent decision. The man who held her interest . . . and her heart . . . was the widower who owned the lakefront home! How could this be?
It seems she had run into him several weeks after they had met to discuss the purchase of the home. There was a quick lunch together, which led to another lunch, and then another . . .
Wow! Now she's telling her husband that she is in love with this man and isn't about to change her mind. Not even her grown children, horrified by the turn of events, could talk sense into their mother.
The day of the wife's departure, her husband was walking through the kitchen with her luggage, and on his way to the garage, stopped, looked at her with tearful eyes, and said, "I guess this is the last time I'll be doing this." Feeling awkward and guilty, she hurriedly grabbed her coat and purse and left the house, driving to meet the new man in her life.
Two weeks after she moved in with him he suffered a massive heart attack, lingered a few days, and died. In just two weeks, the lives of so many were irreparably damaged. Trust was destroyed, the future changed, bright prospects of grandparenting clouded with sorrow, and the vows of marriage shattered by a series of painful events.
My friend, whether you are single or married, God requires purity from you. In your marriage, the smartest thing you will ever do is stay faithful and committed to your spouse.
Christ says in Matthew 5, "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God." Are you satisfying your desires with impure thoughts, images, or relationships? Then you are not able to see God. Don't be deceived by the promises of sin—they are dead-end streets lined with guilt and sorrow.
God knows our hearts; He sees every thought and deed. He isn't fooled by excuses and cover-ups. So I beg you . . . don't destroy your life and the lives of others by choosing or covering sexual sin.
God's way avoids the dead-end streets and broad avenues that lead to destruction. Don't take that detour—stay on the narrow way... it leads to life.
Prayer Point: Confess any perverse thoughts or actions that you have been covering up, and ask God to rid you of them, replacing them with pure thoughts which are pleasing to Him. Stop any plans or flirtations with relationships that will either erode your spiritual walk or hurt your marriage.
Extra Refreshment: Read 2 Samuel 11—a reminder of the devastating consequences of sexual sin.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Tue 30 Apr 2013, 11:01 pm

Little White Lies
James 1:26
If anyone thinks himself to be religious, and yet does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this man's religion is worthless.
In the summer of 1899, four Denver newspapers, including the Denver Post and Rocky Mountain News, published a story claiming that American business firms were planning to demolish the Great Wall of China and use the rubble as paving gravel in a series of new roads.
Of course, there was no such plan—the Great Wall remains fairly intact to this day. So what happened? As it turns out, four reporters met by chance at Union Station, where they were hoping to catch the latest scoop from elsewhere coming in on one of the passenger trains. When no newsworthy items materialized, one reporter suggested that if they all published the same fictitious story, no one would be the wiser.
The group made their way back to the Oxford Hotel where they conspired to craft a tale that would be exciting, believable—and not easily verified. They determined that a story set in the Far East would be less likely to be unraveled by anyone close to home.
The Great Wall hoax was published the next day—reporting that a Mr. Frank C. Lewis of Chicago, stopped at the Oxford on his way to the West Coast to meet with Chinese representatives about the plan. The fabrication was soon published in other major newspapers.
But the joke didn't end there! Decades later, in 1939, Denver songwriter Harvey Wilber published an article claiming that the Denver news report had reached China, infuriating the Chinese people. Wilber said that the Chinese citizens were so outraged by the prospect of westerners demolishing their ancient wall that they rioted, setting off the Boxer Rebellion.
Wilber's source for this legend was a Methodist bishop who was speaking to a Denver church about the power of the printed word—and what may happen when an untruth is allowed to circulate. Yet there are no reports in China that suggest that news of the Denver story ever reached the country. Though the Denver Great Wall hoax made an excellent cautionary tale, the idea that it set off the rebellion in China was itself an urban legend.
Although every lie won't launch national concerns or international bloodshed, lies are at the heart of rebellions against God. It's little wonder that lying is considered ungodly, and treated harshly by our Lord. When you tell the truth, it's easier to live with the consequences. When you tell a lie, the consequences just might cost you more than you ever could have imagined.
Honesty is still the best policy . . . it's certainly the biblical practice to pursue.
Prayer Point: Ask the Lord to reveal dishonesty in your heart—cutting corners at the office; padding expense accounts; cheating in class; exaggerating accomplishments—and ask Him to make honesty your automatic response in life.
Extra Refreshment: Read Acts 5:1-11, a reminder of how much God hates dishonesty.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Admin on Mon 29 Apr 2013, 10:56 pm

The Gospel Is Thick Ice
1 John 5:13
These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.
It was one of those bitter nineteenth-century winters. Sam and Bessie lived on the west bank of a wide river that had to be crossed by rowboat in mild seasons, and by foot or wagon in the winter. Across the half-mile river was a small trading post that served as a general store, selling groceries, medicines, and hardware items.
This particular winter Sam and Bessie briefly extended the hospitality of their cabin to a traveler in need. Little did they know that their visitor left behind an unwelcome gift—a highly contagious disease. In a matter of weeks Bessie was terribly ill. Sam recognized the symptoms and knew that his wife needed medicine available to him only at the trading post.
It was early winter, nights were cold, and although the river lay frozen, Sam was sure that the ice was neither thick enough to support his weight, nor thin enough for his boat to break through. He dearly loved Bessie and determined that he would rather die crossing the river than lose her to the fever. He kissed her, assuring her that he would be back soon, and made his way to the river bank.
Pushing a large plank of wood in front of him, he stretched out his body and began to crawl upon the ice. Slowly and cautiously he inched his way across the ice, praying as he slid the plank before him. All was silent on that great expanse for the first twenty minutes; then the ice began to groan. He scooted ever so gently forward, only to be welcomed by a more insistent creaking.
Sam had just breathed a quick prayer when the groaning became a roar, followed by a terrible crashing sound—the ice was breaking up! He squeezed his eyes shut, bracing for the worst. Nothing happened.
Turning in the direction of the loudest sound, he saw a man driving a wagon pulled by a team of horses, crossing the river 100 yards from where he lay. The horses galloped past him, up the other bank, and stopped in front of the trading post. Sam leaped to his feet, threw his arms into the air, and shouted, "Hallelujah!" He ran across the ice to the store, purchased the medicine, hitched a ride back on the wagon, and raced home to minister to his sick wife.
His fear turned to confidence; his crawling gave way to running; his praying turned to shouts of joy. What was once a weak belief that the ice could hold him was transformed into a confident assurance that it would hold him!
My friend, this is what our faith in God should be like. Listen to the voice of John, the beloved disciple of Christ, as it echoes across the centuries: "Hey believer! I wrote these things so that you can know that you have eternal life!"
The gospel of Christ is not a thin sheet of ice under us, tenuously holding our weight as we desperately pray—it is rock-solid substance we can run, jump, and build our lives upon. The good news of Christ eliminates the fearful crawl and replaces it with a confident walk—sometimes even a leap or two . . . for joy!
Prayer Point: Thank the Lord for the assurance you have of salvation—not because of anything you've done to deserve assurance, but because of Christ's rock-solid promises.
Extra Refreshment: Read 1 John 5 and underline the promises of assurance, writing your own name in the margin of your Bible.
Admin
Admin
Admin

Posts : 65799
Join date : 2008-10-25
Age : 75
Location : Wales UK

https://worldwidechristians.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com - Page 9 Empty Re: WISDOM RETREAT@ Crosswalk.com

Post  Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Page 9 of 20 Previous  1 ... 6 ... 8, 9, 10 ... 14 ... 20  Next

Back to top


 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum