Daily Devotional; formerly Chaplains Corner

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

  1. pipeman525

    pipeman525 New Member

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    Terry from what they said on the news this is the first and it was set up be a charitable organization. I like the idea too.:)
  2. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I dug around a bit -
    Pay It Forward, it seems, is a very ancient concept, described in the fourth century BC. Those exact words were the title of a book, later a movie, and New Zealand started the modern movement in the 21's century. Since then, a lot of countries are listed as taking part, but still nothing 'official' on it.
    This is an opportunity for someone to rally support for this and petition Congress to recognize it - -

    Today, once again, is a recognized day. This is National Arbor Day. Started in January of 1872 by J. Sterling Morton who was then the Secretary of the Nebraska Territory, the first celebration was on April 10th of that year, and it is estimated that Nebraska planted more than one million trees that year.
    As time passed, the date for Arbor day has become different for different states to suit their local climate, but the last Friday in April is the most common one, so has been picked as the day for the National Arbor Day.

    Morton once said “Each generation takes the earth as trustee's.” How exactly right he was. It behooves all of us to utilize our natural resources wisely, so future generations can benefit from them as well as ourselves. Planting trees is an excellent way to do this. We must ensure that we always plant as many as we harvest, or we are reaping benefit that will be paid for by our children's children.

    Arbor Day is nothing new to a Christian. We call it Stewardship, which is something that extends far beyond obeying God's directions in regard to our money. Stewardship extends into every avenue of our lives, from personal time and resources to group time and resources.

    We are to have dominion over and the use of the Earth:
    Genesis 1:27-29 (KJV);
    So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.

    And we are to care for it:
    Genesis 2:15 (KJV);
    And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.

    Let us all be good stewards today of ALL living things which God has blessed us with.

    May God bless each one of you - -
  3. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Psalm 24:1-2 The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it; for he founded it on the seas and established it on the waters.

    As you say, we are stewards, caretakers of God's creation. One of my favorite ideas. Thanks, Terry.
  4. sub-moa

    sub-moa Member

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    In a peaceful spirit there can be no anger, In a angry spirit there can be no peace.:)
  5. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Excellent verse, BlackEagle. I love the idea too -

    Sub-Moa, that is so true!

    For today, I have a story taken from a sermon by Matthew Barker.

    A father and his young daughter got along extremely well, and they spent a lot of time together. Then the father noticed a change in his daughter. If he went for a walk, she excused herself from going. If he watched a movie on TV, she excused herself and spent the time in her room. He grieved about it, but did not want to intrude upon her newly desired solitude. When his birthday came, she presented him with a pair of exquisitely worked slippers, saying, "This is what I have been making for you for the last three months."
    Then he understood what had been the matter lately, and he said, "My darling, I like these slippers very much, but next time buy the slippers and let me have you all the days. I would rather have my child than anything she can make for me."

    I read that story, and immediately a portion of scripture got a new meaning for me, a meaning which I had never seen in it before.

    Revelation 2:2-4 (KJV);
    I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars: And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name's sake hast laboured, and hast not fainted.
    Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.

    Did you see that?
    “I know your works and your labor and your patience - - - - but you have left your first love.” God is telling us that he KNOWS how hard we work for him, and he LOVES us for it, but never wants us to be so busy working FOR Him that we neglect to spend time WITH Him! No matter how much you want to do, or even think you HAVE to do, you can always find time to spend with the Lord.

    May God bless each one of you -
  6. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    The Letters to the Seven Churches are a fascinating study. Each letter was tailored to the church and reflects the social, economic, political, geographic and cultural history and situation of the city and the church in the city.

    The church in Ephesus was indeed hard working, but had lost sight of the reason for the work, and was doing its work for work's sake, not for Christ, as you suggest. Too many churches and Christians today are in the same situation, busy for the sake of being busy rather than carrying out the Great Commission and just being with God.

    It also reminds me of the gentle rebuke Jesus gave Martha in Luke 10:38-42 (41-42):
    Thanks, Terry
  7. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Leslie Stokes, an English Baptist minister, once told a parable that applies to many today:
    Once upon a time there was a tree. It was a lovely-looking tree, shapely, strong, and stately. But appearances are not always to be trusted, and they were not in this case. For the tree knew inwardly that its massive strength was beginning to wane. When the wind was strong it had felt itself shaking ominously, and heard suspicious creaks. So, wisely, it took itself in hand. With much effort it grew another branch or two, and then looked stronger and safer than ever. But when the next gale blew, there was a terrific snapping of roots and, but for the support of a friendly neighbor, it would have been flat on the ground.When the tree had recovered from the shock, it looked at its neighbor curiously. "Tell me," it asked, "how is it that you have not only stood your ground, but are even able to help me, too?"

    "Oh," replied the neighbor, "that's easy. When you were busy growing new branches, I was strengthening my roots."

    This story has at least two applications for the Christian. First, on a personal level, it can apply to the Christian that is interested in all the peripheral issues, and ignores his own spiritual condition. He is interested in wearing the proper clothes to the proper church, and arriving driving the proper car, sitting next to the proper people, but has no idea what God’s will is for his life, because he has never sought to find it. Rarely does one in this group come to the religious forum here, although it has happened.

    On a larger scale, it applies to the church that is very involved in youth activities, has many programs for adults, has a lot of social interaction between members, is always involved in church dinners, ice cream socials, pancake suppers, and Bingo night activities. This church is likely to have a TV program where it reaches out to the entire world, but it has yet to have a single member knock on the door of the people living right beside the church to find out if they have a church home or not. This church is politically correct and socially correct, very large and prosperous, but spiritually dead.

    Give me that old time religion, even if that means ten people meeting in the home of one of the members – and hold the bingo.

    May God bless you, guys -
  8. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

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    hear hear!!!
  9. nightwalker

    nightwalker New Member

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    I find it quite easy to sit, more difficult to do, and most difficult to seek and wait, seek and wait seek and wait...
  10. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Last edited: Apr 29, 2012
  11. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Wow, BlackEagle, very close indeed.

    When you posted that, we were in the Eastern Caribbean without internet access, and I got so far behind on that trip that I never did catch up with all the back posts -

    GREAT job on that piece!

    For Today:

    A certain Duke of Milan was so hated for his unbearable cruelty that everybody prayed day and night for something bad to happen to him.

    Someone noticed that every day at sunrise a decrepit old woman entered a church and prayed to God that he give the Duke health and long life.

    The Duke, hearing about this and knowing very well that he did not deserve that for his virtue, sent for the old woman and asked her why she prayed to God for him every day.

    "I admit," she said, "that I have done this until now for good reasons. This is because when I was a young girl the Milanese had a very cruel lord, and I wished that he should fall from power and die. After he died he was succeeded by another who was no better than he, wherefore I believed once more that it would be to our great advantage if he were killed.

    "Now you are our third lord, and you are more wicked and cruel than the first two. I fear, therefore, that after your death you will be succeeded by someone worse than you are; and so I never stop praying God to let you live for a long time."

    The tyrant was too ashamed to punish the elderly woman for her outspoken words.

    I have had people in my life that did their best to do me ill. I had a very hard time forgiving these people, because the natural human tendency is to dream of getting EVEN with them! But I have now, finally, been able to forgive them, although I cannot yet forget.
    Sgt. LaFredo, as the worst of the bunch, I forgive you for the great efforts you expended to destroy my life while I was in the Air Force. I forgive you for telling blatant lies about me in my permanent military record. I spent years overcoming those, and finally succeeded. I then spent more years overcoming my hatred of you because of them. I repent of the desire to run over you with my car. I repent of the desire to beat you senseless while laughing maniacally. I repent of the desire to put you through all the same type of trouble which you have put me through. In fact, I sincerely hope that you have found the Lord. You do, after all, need him more than any individual I have ever met in my rather long and interesting life.

    Hmm. On reading that, it sounds like I have NOT forgiven him.

    Oh well, pretty close - and I will keep working on it.

    May God bless each one of you!
  12. nightwalker

    nightwalker New Member

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    Very good. Thanks for the honest reminder.
  13. pipeman525

    pipeman525 New Member

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    Thanks Terry you just reinforced something I saw on a Joyce Myers show recently. She was showing why some prayers may seem or be unanswered due to us holding a grudge or not truly forgiving someone. She suggested when we pray we state we have a forgiving heart. If we don't and think we have the Lord will let us know. Maybe your reinforcing this is someone telling me I have someone to truly forgive.:D
  14. BlackEagle

    BlackEagle Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    It is indeed hard to fogive and forget. In 1974 we visited the site of one of the Nazi concentration camps. A multi-faith (Protestant, Jewish, Catholic) chapel had been set up there and we talked with the pastor. He had been a prisoner in the camp; he explained a little of the place to us, and his experiences. He also told us it was important to forgive the Nazi's for what they had done (as did Corrie ten Boom), but not forget, lest we allow the same thing to happen again.

    I see forgiveness as holding the offense/offender in my open hand, and letting God take the offense away to deal with as He sees best. "Vengance is mine, saith the Lord", and He is a lot more creative than I am at either punishing or redeeming the offender. That way I don't have anything on my conscience if something happens to that person.
  15. pipeman525

    pipeman525 New Member

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    Black Eagle I could not agree more. You know sometimes we stay mad at someone who does not even know they hurt us or did something wrong. Maybe they don't care. By not forgiving, the only person in that case who suffers is us. They go on their merry way and don't know or care that you are mad.
  16. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Thank you for the support, guys -
    When a devotional spurs a conversation, it shows me that it is not only being read, but has been pondered upon as well.

    I have many memories of my youth that involve WWII. I remember my older brother having a dream that Adolph Hitler was caught in a fence next to our property, and he was trying to beat him to death before he could get untangled. My oldest sister was dating a soldier, and military uniforms were common around our home. I remember some soldiers building a cart for me from a crate and pushomg it around the yard with me sitting inside driving it. Using my middle name, they painted “Joe's Jeep” on the side of it. I remember the smell of the air when wearing a gas mask, the feel of the silk in a parachute, and I remember the weight of a de-milled bazooka rocket.

    When I started school, we observed every special day with some kind of activity to help us remember it. On this day, May 1st, we celebrated “May Day.” We would take baskets outside and gather wild flowers into them which we would use to make decorations. When I came home from school, my parents were never too enthused about this celebration, and I could not understand why. Then as I grew older, I discovered that May Day was a holiday in Russia to honor the struggle of the workers for better conditions against the evil capitalist business owners. Today, nothing would be done abut this celebration going on in the public schools, but I grew up in a different era with different standards than we have today. President Eisenhower, in 1958, countered this glorification of Communism by proclaiming this date as Law Day. Since Law Day did not catch on too well, he designated the same date the following year to also be Loyalty Day.

    Loyalty Day is defined as follows in 36 U.S.C. § 115:
    Purpose.— Loyalty Day is a special day for the reaffirmation of loyalty to the United States and for the recognition of the heritage of American freedom.
    Proclamation.— The President is requested to issue a proclamation—
    (1) calling on United States Government officials to display the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on Loyalty Day; and
    (2) inviting the people of the United States to observe Loyalty Day with appropriate ceremonies in schools and other suitable places.

    Lets do an experiment today. Lets count how many times you hear reference to Loyalty Day on any news outlet.
    My money is on slim-to-none.

    May God richly bless each one of you this day.
  17. pipeman525

    pipeman525 New Member

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    Terry I think loyalty to our country has gone the way of common courtesy and common sense. It is rare. We all remember 9/11/01 and because of the attacks we all came together. Two weeks later that bond was gone and people got back to their lives. I often tell people that in my lifetime I can only think of a few instances when the whole country has come together for a good event. The flights of Shepard and Glenn, Apollo 11, our POWs coming home from Hanoi, the 1980 olympic hockey team and darn few others. Me, I'm the kind of guy that still gets choked up when they play the national anthem.:)
  18. ampaterry

    ampaterry *TFF Admin Staff Chaplain* Staff Member Supporting Member

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    So do I, Pipeman. Yesterday at K-Mart, I felt tears well up when looking at a new line of patriotic Tee-shirts.
    I feel like the last dinosaur must have felt as his breed became extinct.

    For today, I have a story I found that was told by Ken Trivett many years ago.

    In the early years of his ministry, Dr. George W. Truett took the following verse as his text for a morning's message:

    Matthew 18:19 (KJV);
    Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.

    Having quoted his text, Dr. Truett asked: "Do you believe it?"
    Of course he did not expect an answer, but one was forthcoming nevertheless.

    As he paused for a moment that his question might be understood, a very poor member of the congregation, poor in this world's goods but rich in faith, rose to her feet. "I believe it, pastor," she said, "and I want you to claim that promise with me."

    "It staggered me," said the pastor. "I knew I did not have the faith to claim the promise, but before I had time to answer, a big, burly blacksmith in the congregation rose to his feet; 'I'll claim that promise with you, Auntie,' he said, and together the two, the poor washer-woman and the blacksmith, dropped to their knees in the aisle and poured out their hearts in prayer for the salvation of the woman's husband."

    Now it happened that this man was a riverboat captain on the Rio Grande, a swearing, foul-mouthed drunken sot, and he was at that moment sleeping off a drink at home.
    That night, for the first time in many years at least, the old riverboat captain was in the church and while the pastor preached the woman prayed, not for the salvation of her husband, rather she was thanking God for it, for she seemed to know it would happen that night.
    And of course, when the invitation was given, this old foul-mouthed captain came to give his heart to the Lord, and he became one of the most dependable and faithful workers in that church.

    How about you? Do you believe it? REALLY believe it? You should!

    May God bless each one of you -
  19. sub-moa

    sub-moa Member

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    Vengeance is like a pail with a hole in it.... it promises only emptiness.:(
  20. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

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    i get the quotation , i dont get it's placement here , now

    wanna educate me ?
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