Richer Than Rockefeller

[193 words] One time John D. Rockefeller was one of the richest men in the world. It is said that once he was being interviewed for a newspaper article, the reporter asked: “Mr. Rockefeller, what is the secret to becoming rich?” JDR responded, “There are three simple rules for anyone who wants to become rich:…

God’s Child

[121 words] She searches the crowd for him. Is he listening? Is he behaving himself? It was such a short time ago when she would complain, “I did not hear a word the preacher spoke,” but now her thoughts are distracted for another reason. Now her children are not beside her—they are “too big.” Her…

Take a Moment to Listen

[116 words] Take a moment to listen todayTo what your children are trying to say;Listen today, whatever you doOr they won’t be there to listen to you. Listen to their problems, listen for their needsPraise their smallest triumphs, praise their smartest deeds;Tolerate their chatter, amplify their laughter,Find out what’s the matter, find out what they’re…

How to Have a Happy New Year

[166 words] What phrases are you tired of hearing? I asked this question once in a class and was surprised by the number of statements that came from the students. Among those mentioned was the simple wish: “Happy New Year!” I must confess that I love to hear the phrase because it reminds me of…

The Disease of Discouragement

[196 words] dis·cour·age·ment dəˈskərəjm(ə)nt  a loss of confidence or enthusiasm; dispiritedness. an attempt to prevent something by showing disapproval or creating difficulties; deterrent. Where does discouragement come from? Let’s consider an interesting comment in the book of Ezra. The book of Ezra tells the story of the rebuilding of the temple. Though the act is brought…

Why We Need To Confess

[180 words] As John Dewey exclaimed, “A problem well-put is half solved.” For us to fix something we have to know what is wrong and what is causing the problem. Too many times we face an issue and are unable—or maybe better said unwilling—to examine ourselves to see what is wrong. That is what makes…

High Anxiety and Blessed Relief

[189 words] Christians are not completely immune to anxiety. However, as Holy Spirit-filled followers of the will of God, we do have access to a God who cares for us and who will help us cope with this human reality. Consider, for instance, some things that have been discovered about human anxiety. Objective studies indicate…

Have You Memorized God’s Number?

[178 words] Do you have a phone number you have memorized? Mine was my grandparent’s phone number, 363-3009. They have been dead for several years now. I have not used that number for a long time, but I still know their old number. Many people today do not memorize phone numbers much, we often store…

A Human Jesus

[144 words] The Gospel Accounts present a truly human Jesus, not a ghostly figure who only appeared to be flesh and blood. Jesus spoke of His own body (Mark 14:8), head (Luke 7:44–46), hands, feet, flesh, and bones (Luke 24:39), and blood (Matthew 26:28). He also displayed distinctly human feelings and qualities: He was moved…

Pulling on Both Oars

[157 words] An old Scotsman operated a small rowboat for transporting passengers. One day a passenger noticed that the old man had carved on one oar the word “Faith” and on the other oar the word “Works.” Curious, he asked the meaning. The old man replied, “I’ll show you.” He dropped the “faith” oar and…

Living It Day by Day

[161 words] She sat alone in an old people’s home,Lonely and old and gray;She wished that someone, just anyone,Would call on her that day.Did you? He lay for days on his hospital bed;The hours were long and hard.He wished someone, just anyone,Would send him a cheery card.Did you? He was far from home on foreign…

He Crowns the Humble with Salvation

[172 words] Winston Churchill was once asked, “Doesn’t it thrill you to know that every time you make a speech, the hall is packed to overflowing?” “It’s quite flattering,” replied Sir Winston. “But whenever I feel that way, I always remember that if instead of making a political speech I was being hanged, the crowd…

An Important Ratio

[181 words] The fact that God gave us two ears and two eyes and only one mouth should give us some indication on how he expects us to use them.  “This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger;” (James 1:19). John Maxwell once…

Authority and Power

[149 words] What’s the difference between an ineffective teacher and a school yard bully? The former has authority without power and the latter has power without authority. Our world is full of ineffective authorities and highly effective bullies. When Jesus went to Capernaum, He taught the people and they remarked that He spoke “with authority”…

An Exceptional Lesson

[144 words] It is widely believed and preached that to be saved all that is necessary is to “believe only” or “just receive Jesus as your personal Savior.” These expressions leave us with the erroneous impression that there is nothing for sinners to do to be saved. The Bible teaches differently; there is something you…

Earth’s Most Sacred Spot

[108 words] Some time ago I bought a fine little devotional book on the death of Christ. One of the chapters was on “Earth’s Most Sacred Spot.” The author was referring to Golgotha, “the place which is called Calvary.” Because our Savior suffered and died there, the author considered it the most sacred of all…

10 Reasons for Going to Hell

[129 words] 1. It requires no effort at all to get there.2. You can associate freely with bad company there.3. You won’t have the constant watchful eye of God over you.4. You won’t be expected to attend Bible Study or worship.5. You won’t have to give anything of yourself to God.6. Purity and goodness will…

What Does God Expect from Our Elders?

[145 words] The following acrostic describes many of the attributes and behaviors that God expects of elders. We can read more about what God expects of elders by reading Eph. 4:11-16, 1 Tim. 3, Titus 1, and 1 Peter 5. E – Encouraging members, enthusiastic about the Lord’s work. L – Leader, looking after one’s…

The Bible is God’s Unchanging Standard

[189 words] Man is not left to “do his own thing” religiously. He has the Bible, God’s unchanging standard upon which to build his life. Confusion comes when “Every man does that which was right in his own eyes” (Judges 17:6). When man becomes a law to himself and tries to direct his own affairs…

What Have You Got to Smile About?

[185 words] Smiling is a natural reaction to having a happy heart. I’m not talking about a smirk, leer or a sneer but a genuine, radiant, beaming smile. Actually, there is a lot about “smiling” in the Bible although the actual word isn’t used much in most English translations. For instance, Proverbs 15:13 in the…

Questions Regarding Your Faith

[112 words] We are told in 2 Corinthians 13:5 that we are to examine ourselves as to whether we are in the faith. To help us do this, may I offer the following questions for you to answer. Be honest and deeply examine yourselves. • Am I growing spiritually? • Am I able to truly…

The Letters in ‘All’

[184 words] A teacher once gave me some advice: On a test, “all the above” is often the right answer, but rarely is it in life.  When the claim is “everyone” or “always,” it usually isn’t accurate because there is most likely some exception. Consider Romans 3:23: “…for all have sinned and fall short of…

Christians Need Balance

[182 words] Christians need balance in their life. Life is a lot like riding a bicycle. You must have balance if you ride a bicycle safely. We need balance if we are to live a happy and productive life for Jesus. If we have balance; if we “love” God and “fear” God we will avoid…

Courage, Strength, Compassion

[151 words] Standing for what you believe in, regardless of the odds against you and the pressure that tears at your resistance…Means Courage. Keeping a smile on your face, when inside you feel like dying, for the sake of supporting others…Means Strength. Stopping at nothing and doing what, in your heart, you know is right…Means…

You’ve Never Tried It

[198 words] I recall when I was a boy that sometimes I would turn my nose up at foods that Mama would offer. The answer Mom would give would be, “You’ve never even tried it,” followed by, “Try it; you might like it!” ​It has come to mind many times about those who find Christianity…

Can’t Swim, But Does

[153 words] The Byram River in Greenwich, Connecticut, at the crest was running twelve to fifteen feet deep. A family picnicking at the edge watched in horror as their two-year-old daughter fell into the water. Her 23-year-old mother, who could not swim and was horrified by water, jumped in and pulled her little girl to…

Making God Second Best

[137 words] I’m always prompt to punch the clock;I never miss a date,But when I go to worship God,I’m usually always late.I wouldn’t think of leaving work,To visit brother Fred;I just wait ‘til Sunday comes,And forsake the church instead.I never miss a day at work;Perfection’s what I seek;But I miss the worship of my God,Once…

Love That Lives

[122 words] From day to day, from heart to heart There lives the hope of a love apart— Apart from the commonplace, content That this is a gift that God has sent.A love that builds, from day to day, A sense of worthiness, and not dismay A bit of heaven, a bit of home — …

Candidates for Dumbest Criminals

[159 words] Three years ago, Florida police pulled over a speeding car traveling over 90 mph on one of the state’s major intersections. As an officer approached the car, he noticed two zip-lock bags labeled “bag full of drugs.” A drug-sniffing dog alerted the police that illegal drugs were inside the automobile. This gave the…

H.A.B.I.T.

[186 words] HABIT. The only way to get rid of a bad habit is to stop it at once. If you try tapering off, this is the result. You drop the “H” and you still have… A BIT. You think you are getting over it by dropping a little bit of the evil thing, so…

Revelation

[101 words] If all my days were summer, could I knowThe meaning of my Lord’s “made white as snow”? If all my hours were joyous could I say,“In His fair land, all tears are wiped away”? If I were never weary could I keepClose to my heart, “He gives His loved ones sleep”? Were no…

Joy Springs from Your Relationship with God

[136 words] David wrote Psalm 16 as a prayer to God. In it, David asks for the Lord’s protection during a trying time. Also, David begs the Lord for His guidance. Then David made a commitment to follow God’s direction. Many call this a “messianic psalm” (a prophecy of some aspect of Jesus’ life). From…

Not My Worry

[148 words] Two women were talking one day when one shared she had a mountain of credit card debt, she had lost her job, the bank was taking the car, and her house was in foreclosure, but she was not worried about it. Her friend got excited and asked why she was not going to…

Service

[112 words] There’s a clever young guy namedSomebody Else, There’s nothing this guy can’t do.He is busy from morningtill way late at night,Just substituting for you.You’re asked to do this or you’reasked to do that,And what is your ready reply?“Set Somebody Else to do that job,He’ll do it much better than I.“So much to do…

The Heartbeat of God

[179 words] The darkened earth wept in silence,Alone.The sun, black and cold,A dark and rugged stone cast into the sky;God’s face, turned from His creation,Eyes closed, His gentle heartBeating as a resounding drum,Its loud echo ringing throughThe spheres of space and time.The anguished voice of His blessed SonCried out,Though the spirit, strong, remained unmarred,Untouched by…

The Bible Speaks

[109 words] I am the Bible, God’s wonderful Library.I am always–and above all–the truth.To the weary pilgrim, I am a strong staff.To the one who sits in darkness, I amglorious light.To those who stumble beneath heavyburdens, I am sweet rest.To him who has lost his way, I am a safeguide.To those who are sick in…

Our Declaration of Independence

[148 words] On July 4, 1776, the Continental Congress adopted the United States Declaration of Independence. This declared the original 13 colonies’ freedom from the oppressive rule of England. We celebrate this emancipation as a nation every year on July 4—and well we should. We live in the freest, greatest, most abundant land of opportunity…

On Independence Day Remember our King!

[164 words] When this country was born, one of the great slogans was, “We have no king but Jesus.” As the Bible says: “He is the King of kings and the Lord of Lords” (Revelation 19:16; 1 Timothy 6:15). Despite what history “revisionists” and so-called fact checkers spin, this country was founded by people who…

No Time for God?

[139 words] No time for God?What fools we are, to clutter upOur lives with common thingsAnd leave without heart’s gateThe Lord of life and Life itself—Our God. No time for God?As soon to say, no timeTo eat or sleep or love or die.Take time for GodOr you shall dwarf your soul,And when the angel deathComes…

My Daddy is Here

[169 words] David Elkind, the famous child psychologist and author of the best-selling The Hurried Child, tells this true story about his role as a parent: “I remember visiting my middle son’s nursery school class, at the request of his teacher, so that I could observe a “problem child” in the class. It so happened…