Daily Devotional; formerly Chaplains Corner

Discussion in 'Religious Discussions' started by ampaterry, Apr 24, 2011.

  1. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 25, 2011
    I recall reading that story. Brings back memories.

    My parents met a couple in Turkey many years ago. Then, as now, it was illegal to talk about Christ with anyone else. They were employed by a large company, but saw themselves as being missionaries to the Turks. Yes, it is dangerous, they said, but the Christians in this country may have to be in as many prisons as Paul was to evangelize this country, but it will be. Dad could see his determination as he said that.

    Matthew 6:19-22 comes to mind...our hearts are where our treasure is.

    So does Philippians 3:12-16
    12 Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. 13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 15 Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you. 16 Only let us hold true to what we have attained.

    Thanks again, from the "Amen corner".
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2012
  2. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    Thank you, BlackEagle -
    We may, indeed, see the inside of a prison cell if things continue as they are.
    Speaking against homosexuality is hate speech right now; sooner or later Christians are going to be arrested for doing so -

    For today:

    You are familiar with the fact that a horse will run back into a burning barn after they have been brought out of it to save them, aren’t you? It is because the barn is HOME to them – it has always been safety and comfort, where they are fed and where they are given loving care. Many people cannot comprehend that, and feel that it is a lack of intelligence on the part of the horse to do this. Consider this item I read some time ago:

    When the Bastille, the most famous prison in Paris, was about to be destroyed in 1789, a convict was brought out who had been confined in one of its gloomy cells for many years. But instead of joyfully welcoming his liberty, he begged to be taken back. It had been such a long time since he had seen the sunshine that his eyes could not endure its brightness. His only desire was to die in the murky dungeon where he had been a captive.

    Whether its horses or people, the result is the same; some become comfortable in their surroundings, and prefer them to any change – even if those surroundings are on the eve of destruction, and nothing but flames are in their immediate future.

    John 3:17-21 (KJV);
    For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.

    What do you want for your future; the familiar bleakness, or GLORY for eternity? The thought of such a change can be frightening, but does not have to be. Familiarize yourself with the Bible and the message from God contained in it. Join yourself to a good body of believers where the truth is taught. Don't be satisfied with staying in the burning barn - -

    May God bless each one of you -

  3. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 25, 2011
    Inertia. Rocks have it, people have it. I have it. It's comfortable keeping the status quo. Change means breaking out of my familiar, comfortable pattern of life and doing something different, putting new pressures on and stretching me in areas I'm not used to being stretched in.
    God has a way of giving us a good healthy kick in the backside from time to time.

    Thanks again, Terry.
  4. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    Thanks, BlackEagle!

    For today:

    Many years ago, while on a visit to America, a wealthy Chinese businessman was fascinated by a powerful microscope. Looking through its lens to study crystals and the petals of flowers, he was amazed at their beauty and detail. So he decided to purchase one of these devices and take it back to China. He thoroughly enjoyed using it until one day he examined some rice he was planning to eat for dinner. Much to his dismay, he discovered that tiny living creatures were crawling in it. Since he was especially fond of this staple food in his daily diet, he wondered what to do. Finally he concluded that there was only one way out of his dilemma -- He smashed the microscope to pieces.

    "How foolish!" you say? But how often do you hear the expression about someone not liking the message, so they kill the messenger? This expression came into being NOT because such a foolish action is RARE, but because it is so commonplace!

    Consider Stephen, when he spoke God’s truth to the people:
    Acts 7:51-60 (KJV);
    Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye. Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? and they have slain them which shewed before of the coming of the Just One; of whom ye have been now the betrayers and murderers: Who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it. When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth. But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God, And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God. Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord, And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man's feet, whose name was Saul. And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.

    They didn't like the prophecy, so they killed the prophet.

    Today, Christians tell the truth about Abortion, Homosexuality, Adultry, lying, cheating and stealing.
    How does the world around us respond?
    Well, here in the US they don't stone us.
    But they do take legal action to keep us out of schools, off of street corners, out of court houses, and any other place the courts can POSSIBLE have legal influence.

    God's words are harsh.
    The world's acceptance is much more comfortable - for a few years at least.

    May God bless each one of you with the opportunity to speak the TRUTH in a way that it is HEARD.
  5. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 25, 2011
    Luke 19:39-40 And some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples.” He answered, “I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out.”

    The letter to the church in Pergamum in Rev. 2 has some insights into 1: Compromise in the church; 2: Christ's reward for those who stay faithful in the face of persecution and pressure to compromise.

    The world wants to crush the microscope of God's Word into their lives, and the Church is His mouthpiece, so the church (you, me, Christians in general) is the target of the world's wrath.

    The right response to God's examination of our lives is Psalm 139.

    Thanks again, Terry.
  6. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    Thank you, BlackEagle -

    For today:

    There are parts of scripture that are often taken wrong, and the meaning of them is completely missed due to that. God has a sense of humor; without it, he surely could not have created the duck billed platypus! Did you know that the first platypus that was brought out of Australia was thought to be a Joke? It had been stuffed, and the naturalists that saw it discounted it as a hoax! There was no WAY an animal could nurse it’s young, have a pouch, have a bill like a duck, and have poison injecting claws! Yes, God most certainly has a sense of humor.

    Years ago, Vice President Cheney had a hunting accident in Texas. Immediately, a cartoon was published which showed a man laying with his feet sticking up in the air, and Cheney holding a smoking gun was saying “You just watch! The press will put a negative spin on this!” Now, if we are inclined to smile at that, is it because we think this tragedy was funny? Of course not! We laugh at the absurdity!

    And that, I believe, is what the Scripture means when it portrays God as laughing at his enemies' troubles. His response doesn't stem from God’s enjoying anyone's pain; it reflects the absurdity of thinking that one can ultimately come out ahead if he tries to take advantage of either God or His people.

    As I type this, a lot of barbarian terrorists are firing rockets into Israel from Gaza. They have plenty of money from the fact that they are financed by oil producing countries. They have no real civilization, they have no real technology, and they most certainly do not have any moral code whatsoever. What they have is LOTS of money, with which they purchase weapons from people low enough to sell to them. I firmly believe this laughter of God is about to be heard by these terrorists in Gaza - any minute now.

    Psalm 59:8(KJV);
    “But thou, O LORD, shalt laugh at them; thou shalt have all the heathen in derision.”

    Psalm 2:2-4 (KJV);
    “The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us. He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.”

    God does NOT laugh at their pain, nor their suffering, nor their eventual defeat; he laughs at the utter ridiculousness of MAN coming against HIM!

    May God bless each one of you -
  7. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    Many people are not content with the work they are doing because the grass always looks greener on the other side of the fence. They are dissatisfied even when their circumstances are favorable. Instead of being cheerful and conscientious as to the Lord, they yield to covetousness. As a result, they miss God's best for their lives and fail to see the blessings they already have. They should pay attention to the title of Erma Bombeck’s book; ‘The grass is always greener over the septic tank!’

    An ancient Persian legend tells of a wealthy man by the name of Al Haffed who owned a large farm. One evening a visitor related to him tales of fabulous amounts of diamonds that could be found in other parts of the world, and of the great riches they could bring him. The vision of all this wealth made him feel poor by comparison. So instead of caring for his own prosperous farm, he sold it and set out to find these treasures. But the search proved to be fruitless. Finally, penniless and in despair, he committed suicide by jumping into the sea. Meanwhile, the man who had purchased his farm noticed one day the glint of an unusual stone in a shallow stream on the property. He reached into the water, and to his amazement he pulled out a huge diamond. Later when working in his garden, he uncovered many more valuable gems. Poor Al Haffed had spent his life traveling to distant lands seeking jewels when on the farm he had left behind were all the precious stones his heart could have ever desired.

    This is not unlike the Alaska gold rush which I have studied; thousands of people left home and loved ones for the hoped for yellow gold of the north, and received a frozen grave for their reward. Not ONE of the original people who found gold there remained wealthy!

    Psalm 63:5 (NRSV);
    “My soul is satisfied as with a rich feast, and my mouth praises you with joyful lips”

    Philippians 4:11 (KJV);
    “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.”

    May God bless each one of you with the ability to appreciate what you already have.
  8. Krogen

    Krogen Member

    Jan 1, 2012
    Once again, a devotional hit home for me! There have been events this week where the Lord tapped me on the shoulder and pointed me somewhere.

    Today's devotional is one more. :D

  9. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    Thank you, Krogen!

    I am sorry for my lack of presence over the last 30 hours or so -
    Hughes is giving me FITS on the internet with slow connections/no connections, and has held my E-mail hostage since Friday -
    But I get in here when they allow it -

    For today:

    It was back in the early '60s that Admiral Rickover wrote these few lines to those who are at the helm:

    Responsibility is a unique concept. It can only reside in a single individual. You may share it with others, but your portion is not diminished. You may delegate it, but it is still with you. If responsibility is rightfully yours, no evasion or ignorance or passing the blame can shift the burden to someone else. Unless you can point your finger at the one who is responsible when something goes wrong, then you never had anyone really responsible.

    Tough words, but true. Rickover never was one to concern himself with tact. Maybe his grit is needed more than we realize. Big projects and meaningful achievements get done not by dreamers but by doers, not by armchair generals who watch and frown from a distance but by brave troops in the trenches, not by fat fans in the bleachers but by lean, committed players on the field, not by those who stay neutral and play it safe but by those who get off the fence of indecision, even though their decisions are occasionally unpopular, and sometimes even – (dare we admit it?) WRONG!

    Luke 12:48 (KJV);
    But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more."

    Romans 14:12 (KJV); “So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.”

    James 1:23-25 (KJV);
    “For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.”

    Get off of the sidelines, and join the battle! Take responsibility for the introduction of your friends and family to Jesus Christ!
  10. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 25, 2011
    As far as God laughing at those who try to deny Him, He must be rolling on the floor over this greenhouse fiasco. I think future generations will either laugh at us or curse us roundly for the stupidity we have exhibited. As you say, Psalm 2 says it so well.

    I like Erma Bombeck, although I don't have any of her books. She wrote another one--If life is a bowl of cherries, why am I always in the pits? Someone said you can tell those for whom life is a bed of roses--they are always complaining about the thorns. The problem with being unhappy with where you are is not the place, but the "you". People frequently ask which is better? The US or the UK. My answer: both have their good points and their bad points; I just choose to emphasise the good points. Paul had it pretty well pegged:
    Philippians 4:11 Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. 12 I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. 13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

    Admiral Rickover is the complete opposite from the current occupant of the White House, who always looks for someone to blame. Part of our assurance as Christians is knowing we have God's comission/authority behind us.

    Joshua 1:9--Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of a good courage. Be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed, for I the Lord thy God am with thee, whithersoever thou goest.

    Matthew 28:18-20: And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

    Paul had the same sense of God's commission, and Elijah there on the mountain in 1 Kings 19, and so many others.

    To those who carry out God's commands faithfully, He says "Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord". God rewards the doers.

    Thanks for being faithful in this, Terry.
  11. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    Thank you, BlackEagle!
    It is VERY difficult to get these posted right now; my hughes connection is highly intermittent since Friday evening. Customer support India division gave up and kicked it upstairs. They are supposed to call me.
    E-mail is completely gone - hughes AND Hotmail. The connection is too poor and intermittent to sign in to the mail servers.
    But as long as I can get a connection to hold for a couple minutes, I will continue -

    For today:

    Luke 15:4-6 (KJV); “What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it? And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.

    'Twas a sheep, not a lamb, that strayed away,
    In the parable Jesus told;
    A grown-up sheep that had gone astray
    From the ninety and nine in the fold.
    Out on the hillside, out in the cold,
    'Twas a sheep the Good Shepherd sought;
    And back to the flock, safe into the fold,
    'Twas a sheep the Good Shepherd brought.
    And why for the sheep should we earnestly long,
    And as fervently hope and pray?
    Because there is danger, if they go wrong,
    They will lead the lambs astray.
    And so with the sheep we tenderly plead,
    For the sake of the lambs today;
    If the sheep are lost, what terrible cost
    Some lambs will have to pay!

    Matt 18:3-7 (KJV); “And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me. But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea. Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh!

    No man is an island, and that holds DOUBLY true for the Christian. Your every move is watched and scrutinized by the world AND by the 'babes in Christ'.
    Make sure you don't give one a reason to criticize or the other a reason to stumble - -

    May God bless you, guys!
  12. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 25, 2011
    1 Cor. 8 says the same. Verse 13 kind of sumarises it:
    Wherefore, if meat make my brother to offend, I will eat no flesh while the world standeth, lest I make my brother to offend.

    Is there any other place you could go to access the internet? Our public libraries over here sport computers with internet access, free of charge. You just need to have a library card. If you have a laptop, can you take it to a Starbucks or somewhere like that...get a cup of coffee and connect via wi-fi?

    At any rate, I'll be praying for your internet connection. God works with technology as much as with people, health, and weather and anything else.

    Thanks for hanging in there, Terry.
  13. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    Yes, our library does have computers for public use, and there are some places that have Y-fi.
    But the nearest spot is about 12 miles from here, which makes it a real pain -

    I got a call from the next level of support, who were kind enough to screw my computer up to the point that my anti-virus software will not run until it can connect and upgrade - which it cannot do right now. They concluded that it was on my end (I would bet it is NOT) and are sending a tech out to look at it.

    I may say to heck with it and upgrade to the new satellite -
  14. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2008
    West Tennessee
    I could not get yesterday to post, but it is working again this AM - sort of.
    I have a new satellite system on order, and when it is installed these troubles will be GONE, because it is ALL new, from satellite to computer, due to a new satellite Hughes launched that is higher speed and not compatible with the old equipment!

    For today:

    When I broke my leg some years ago, the VA put me in a zero weight cast for many weeks until the bones had knit back together. It seemed forever that I got around in that wheelchair, or swung that leg above the ground when I used my crutches. Finally, at a check up months after the accident, the doctor told me I could put my full weight on that foot. I was so happy! I stood up from the wheelchair, put that foot forward, and stepped onto it! An instant later, I was leaning on the table with the doctor and Judy both supporting me. The muscles of my leg, so long unused, had grown weak and unable to support my weight.
    That's precisely what happens to a church when its leaders don't pray -- its ministry becomes powerless and ineffective. E.M. Bounds emphasized the need for a ministry of prayer within the church when he wrote, "It may be laid down as an axiom, that God needs, first of all, leaders in the church who will be first in prayer, men with whom prayer is habitual and characteristic, men who know the primacy of prayer. But even more than a habit of prayer, and more than prayer being characteristic of them, church leaders are to be men whose lives are made and molded by prayer, whose heart and life are made up of prayer. These are the men -- the only men -- God can use in the furtherance of His kingdom and the implanting of His message in the hearts of men."

    Colossians 4:2 (KJV);
    “Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;”

    1 Thessalonians 5:17 (KJV);
    “Pray without ceasing.”

    1 Tim 2:8 (KJV);
    “I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.”

    Without prayer, we are weak and powerless, because our only strength is our own, and the flesh is weak. Prayer is a conduit from our weak selves to the power of God himself! Do NOT neglect it!

    May God bless each one of you!
  15. tcox4freedom

    tcox4freedom Well-Known Member

    Here's another one that seem apropos-

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