Get Outta' the Boat!

Charles Swindoll, in his book "Three Steps Forward, Two Steps Back," tells a story about a farmer who wanted to impress his hunting buddies, so he went out and bought the smartest, most expensive hunting dog he could find.  He trained this dog to do things no other dog on earth could do---impossible feats that would surely amaze anyone.  Then he invited his neighbors to go duck hunting with him.  After a long patient wait in the boat a group of ducks flew over and the hunters were able to shoot a few of them down.  Several ducks fell into the water.  The farmer looked at the dog and said, "Go get 'em!"  The dog leaped out of the boat, walked on the water, picked up a duck, and returned to the boat.  As soon as he dropped the duck in the boat he trotted off across the water again, grabbed another duck, and brought it back to the boat.  The owner kind of swelled up with pride as his dog walked across the water and retrieved each of the birds one by one.  Kind of smugly, he looked at his buddies and asked, "Do you notice anything unusual about my dog?"  One of them sat back, rubbed his chin, thought about it for a little while, and finally said, "Yeah, come to think of it, I do!  That stupid dog doesn't know how to swim does he?"

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Hey Jude, You Didn't Say Much but You Said It Well

I had been planning to write something witty, something fresh, however, God tells me His Word is sufficient.  So let's look at Jude and think about the message(s) coming from PCUSA.

"I must write urging you to stoutly defend the truth which God gave His people to keep without change.  I say this because some godless teachers have wormed their way in among you saying that after we become Christians we can do just as we like without fear of God's punishment.  These false teachers carelessly go right on living their evil, immoral lives, degrading their bodies and laughing at those in authority over them.  All they leave behind them is shame and disgrace, they wander around looking as bright as stars, but ahead of them is the everlasting gloom and darkness that God has prepared for them.  These men are constant gripers, never satisfied, doing whatever evil they feel like, they are loud mouthed "show offs," and when they show respect for others, it is only to get something from them in return.

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Let's Leave Judgement to God

Paul writes: "Welcome with open arms fellow believers who don't see things the way you do.  And don't jump all over them every time they do or say something you don't agree with, even when it seems that they are strong on opinions but weak in faith.  Remember, they have their own history to deal with.  Treat them gently." ( Romans 14:1)

When we criticize our brother or sister we need to remember that we are all going to end up kneeling side by side in the place of judgment, facing God.  Forget about deciding what is right, or wrong, for each other; or putting a stumbling block in front of one who is coming to Jesus.  We have our hands full taking care of our own lives before God.  Let's cultivate our own relationships with God and not impose our prejudices on others.  We are each responsible for our personal relationship with our Lord Jesus, and we all have history.  Let us focus on God's grace and mercy, and be thankful that Jesus died for us so that we who believe in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Learning daily on the inside,

Pete

Friends and Heaven

A man and his dog were walking along a road.  The man was enjoying the scenery, when it suddenly occurred to him that he was dead.  He remembered dying, and that his faithful dog had been dead for many years.  He wondered where the road was leading them.  After a while, they came to a high, white stone wall along one side of the road.  It looked like fine marble.  As he reached the wall, he saw a magnificent gate in the arch, and the street that led to the gate made from pure gold.  He and the dog walked toward the gate, and as he got closer, he saw a man at a desk to one side.  When he was close enough, he called out, "Excuse me, where are we?"

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Promised Rest

Thank you for allowing me to be part of our church's ministry.  I have just finished my tenth year at Green River Correction Complex (GRCC) and am in my seventh at the Hopkins County Jail (HCJ).  Some days get very long, working for the school system during the day and ministering at night, and there are times when I don't feel like going.  However, every time I feel weary I'm energized by the Holy Spirit and the inmates' need to see Jesus' love in someone spending time with them. I'm truly blessed.

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Ruminating with the Cervidae

2 Timothy 3:16-17  Where does all scripture come from?  What is scripture good for?
2 Peter 1:20-21  Does scripture come from the will of man?  Who "inspired" or "carried" men to write the Bible?
Psalm 12:6  Does the Bible contain any mistakes?  What does "pure" gold or silver mean?
Psalm 119:160  How can you respond to someone who says the Bible isn't true?  Does God ever need to come up with new rules or laws?
1 Corinthians 2:14  Why is it difficult for some people to understand the Bible?  How does God reveal the Bible to us?  If we acknowledge that scripture is God breathed and good for teaching, rebuking, correcting, training and equipping. And, that the WORD is flawless and pure; carried by the Holy Spirit; true and eternal; why do we have trouble with 1 Timothy 3 ?

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Frogs and Toads

"Therewith she [Errour] spewed out of her filthy maw
A floud of poyson horrible and blacke,
Full of great lumpes of flesh and gobbets raw...
Her voit full of bookes and papers was,
With loathly frogs and toades..."  Book 1, Canto 1, Stanza 20, The Faerie Queene, Edmund Spenser

Thinking about the Faerie Queene talking with the frogs I looked up the above quote.  I think about faeries and frogs every now and then.  The frogs echo the image of the deceiving spirits in the Biblical book of Revelation and Spenser is arguing Protestant theology over Catholicism.  Today many of us are spewing out a flood of poison full of self-righteous indignation over many truths, half-truths, or no truth at all, without searching our Bibles and our souls.  God's son, Yeshua, the Messiah, came to save the world.  His people rejected Him and I am afraid that we may be rejecting Him as well.  We profess that Jesus is Lord, but we don't live like we are His servants.

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