Message In A Bottle

Discussion in 'Faith & Religion' started by Joe Riley, Nov 12, 2015.

  1. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    I have attended KJV-only Baptist churches because I like the conservative teaching but I would estimate that more than half of the pastor's sermon time is spent translating the King James version into regular English. I'm thinking that if you have to spend so much of your pulpit time translating the King James into something that the congregation can understand, why are you insisting on the King James? That said, there are many parts of the King James that are so splendid, so poetic, and not to be found duplicated in other versions that the KJV certainly has its place.

    I grew up in a church, and at a time when the King James version was the most used, so I can read it without too much trouble, but it is very difficult to get someone who has been unchurched interested when you're giving them a Bible whose words look foreign to them. The Holman translation is a good, conservative, modern-language translation but, although I have one, I have so many other versions that I generally turn to either the KJV or the NASB.
     
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  2. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Hi, Mari, and welcome. As I recall, Ken Taylor's Living Bible, was written to help adults read the Bible to children, without stopping to explain everything. It is an interpretive, paraphrased version. I have never read through the Bible, but my Wife has completed it 3 or 4 times, over the last thirty years. She likes the KJV & NIV. It's good to read many different versions. I remember the one with four different versions, side by side...something like the Parallel Bible or something. Glad you found your WAY to our Forum!
     
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  3. Mari North

    Mari North Very Well-Known Member
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    That's the one for sure! Exactly. You should see some of the pictures on the inside! :D If anyone would have told me back then that I'd be missing those days in a few decades, I would have laughed them out of the room. But my goodness, do I miss those days. Bad hair and all. :p
     
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  4. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Today's reading in the Message bible, is Matthew 20:29-34.

    29 As they were leaving Jericho, a huge crowd followed. 30 Suddenly they came upon two blind men sitting alongside the road. When they heard it was Jesus passing, they cried out, "Master, have mercy on us! Mercy, Son of David!" 31 The crowd tried to hush them up, but they got all the louder, crying, "Master, have mercy on us! Mercy, Son of David!" 32 Jesus stopped and called over, "What do you want from me?" 33 They said, "Master, we want our eyes opened. We want to see!" 34 Deeply moved, Jesus touched their eyes. They had their sight back that very instant, and joined the procession.
     
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  5. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Today's reading from the Message bible, is Psalm 34.

    1 I bless God every chance I get; my lungs expand with his praise. 2 I live and breathe God; if things aren't going well, hear this and be happy: 3 Join me in spreading the news; together let's get the word out. 4 God met me more than halfway, he freed me from my anxious fears. 5 Look at him; give him your warmest smile. Never hide your feelings from him. 6 When I was desperate, I called out, and God got me out of a tight spot. 7 God's angel sets up a circle of protection around us while we pray. 8 Open your mouth and taste, open your eyes and see - how good God is. Blessed are you who run to him. 9 Worship God if you want the best; worship opens doors to all his goodness. 10 Young lions on the prowl get hungry, but God-seekers are full of God. 11 Come, children, listen closely; I'll give you a lesson in God worship. 12 Who out there has a lust for life? Can't wait each day to come upon beauty? 13 Guard your tongue from profanity, and no more lying through your teeth. 14 Turn your back on sin; do something good. Embrace peace - don't let it get away! 15 God keeps an eye on his friends, his ears pick up every moan and groan. 16 God won't put up with rebels; he'll cull them from the pack. 17 Is anyone crying for help? God is listening, ready to rescue you. 18 If your heart is broken, you'll find God right there; if you're kicked in the gut, he'll help you catch your breath. 19 Disciples so often get into trouble; still, God is there every time. 20 He's your bodyguard, shielding every bone; not even a finger gets broken. 21 The wicked commit slow suicide; they waste their lives hating the good. 22 God pays for each slave's freedom; no one who runs to him loses out.
     
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  6. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Psalm 108, is today's reading from the Message Bible.:)

    1 I'm ready, God, so ready, ready from head to toe. Ready to sing, ready to raise a God-song: 2 "Wake, soul! Wake, lute! Wake up, you sleepyhead sun!" 3 I'm thanking you, God, out in the streets, singing your praises in town and country. 4 The deeper your love, the higher it goes; every cloud's a flag to your faithfulness. 5 Soar high in the skies, O God! Cover the whole earth with your glory! 6 And for the sake of the one you love so much, reach down and help me - answer me! 7 That's when God spoke in holy splendor: "Brimming over with joy, I make a present of Shechem, I hand out Succoth Valley as a gift. 8 Gilead's in my pocket, to say nothing of Manasseh. Ephraim's my hard hat, Judah my hammer. 9 Moab's a scrub bucket - I mop the floor with Moab, Spit on Edom, rain fireworks all over Philistia." 10 Who will take me to the thick of the fight? Who'll show me the road to Edom? 11 You aren't giving up on us, are you, God? refusing to go out with our troops? 12 Give us help for the hard task; human help is worthless. 13 In God we'll do our very best; he'll flatten the opposition for good.
     
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  7. Bill Boggs

    Bill Boggs Very Well-Known Member
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    Been a long time since I've read any bible but always preferred the KJV. I know nothing of other translations.
     
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  8. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Today's reading from the Message Bible, is taken from Romans, Chapter 8 verses 31 through 39.;)

    31 So, what do you think? With God on our side like this, how can we lose? 32 If God didn't hesitate to put everything on the line for us, embracing our condition and exposing himself to the worst by sending his own Son, is there anything else he wouldn't gladly and freely do for us?

    33 And who would dare tangle with God by messing with one of God's chosen? 34 Who would dare even to point a finger? The One who died for us - who was raised to life for us! - is in the presence of God at this very moment sticking up for us. 35 Do you think anyone is going to be able to drive a wedge between us and Christ's love for us?

    There is no way! Not trouble, not hard times, not hatred, not hunger, not homelessness, not bullying threats, not backstabbing, not even the worst sins listed in Scripture: 36 They kill us in cold blood because they hate you. We're sitting ducks; they pick us off one by one. 37 None of this fazes us because Jesus loves us.

    38 I'm absolutely convinced that nothing - nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, 39 high or low, thinkable or unthinkable - absolutely nothing can get between us and God's love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.
     
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  9. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Matthew 7:1-12 is today's reading from the Message Bible.;)

    1 "Don't pick on people, jump on their failures, criticize their faults - unless, of course, you want the same treatment.
    2 That critical spirit has a way of boomeranging.
    3 It's easy to see a smudge on your neighbor's face and be oblivious to the ugly sneer on your own.
    4 Do you have the nerve to say, 'Let me wash your face for you,' when your own face is distorted by contempt?
    5 It's this whole traveling road-show mentality all over again, playing a holier-than-thou part instead of just living your part. Wipe that ugly sneer off your own face, and you might be fit to offer a washcloth to your neighbor.
    6 "Don't be flip with the sacred. Banter and silliness give no honor to God. Don't reduce holy mysteries to slogans. In trying to be relevant, you're only being cute and inviting sacrilege.
    7 "Don't bargain with God. Be direct. Ask for what you need.
    8 This isn't a cat-and-mouse, hide-and-seek game we're in.
    9 If your child asks for bread, do you trick him with sawdust?
    10 If he asks for fish, do you scare him with a live snake on his plate?
    11 As bad as you are, you wouldn't think of such a thing. You're at least decent to your own children. So don't you think the God who conceived you in love will be even better?
    12 "Here is a simple, rule-of-thumb guide for behavior: Ask yourself what you want people to do for you, then grab the initiative and do it for them. Add up God's Law and Prophets and this is what you get.
     
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  10. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Today's reading from the Message Bible is Matthew 13:9-17 (Jesus is speaking)

    9 "Are you listening to this? Really listening?"
    10 The disciples came up and asked, "Why do you tell stories?"
    11 He replied, "You've been given insight into God's kingdom. You know how it works. Not everybody has this gift, this insight; it hasn't been given to them.
    12 Whenever someone has a ready heart for this, the insights and understandings flow freely. But if there is no readiness, any trace of receptivity soon disappears.
    13 That's why I tell stories: to create readiness, to nudge the people toward receptive insight. In their present state they can stare till doomsday and not see it, listen till they're blue in the face and not get it.
    14 I don't want Isaiah's forecast repeated all over again: Your ears are open but you don't hear a thing. Your eyes are awake but you don't see a thing.
    15 The people are blockheads! They stick their fingers in their ears so they won't have to listen; They screw their eyes shut so they won't have to look, so they won't have to deal with me face-to-face and let me heal them.
    16 "But you have God-blessed eyes - eyes that see! And God-blessed ears - ears that hear!
    17 A lot of people, prophets and humble believers among them, would have given anything to see what you are seeing, to hear what you are hearing, but never had the chance.
     
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  11. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Psalm 1, is one of my favorite readings from the Message Bible!;)

    1 How well God must like you - you don't hang out at Sin Saloon, you don't slink along Dead-End Road, you don't go to Smart-Mouth College. 2 Instead you thrill to God's Word, you chew on Scripture day and night. 3 You're a tree replanted in Eden, bearing fresh fruit every month, Never dropping a leaf, always in blossom. 4 You're not at all like the wicked, who are mere windblown dust - 5 Without defense in court, unfit company for innocent people. 6 God charts the road you take. The road they take is Skid Row.
     
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  12. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    My very first Bible as a new Christian was the NKJV and I still have this one because this is the Bible the Holy Spirit will give me words of knowledge for family members through. Then I have a Life Application Bible in the NIV which I read alot, but my favorite one for the past few years has been The Knowing Jesus Study Bible NIV which is a one year study of Jesus in every book of the Bible. I think I ordered this Bible from Christianbooks.com, wherever I got it from it has really increased my knowledge of Jesus. And the Life Application Bible has given me wisdom and discernment in growing and walking in my faith in the world we now live in. My favorite books are the Psalms and the Four Gospels along with the book of Revelation.
     
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  13. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    I would like to do something different, and share today's devotional from "The Upper Room". It is called "A Chance To Live".

    The Scripture is John 3:13-21.(NIV) "God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him".

    Devotional:
    We had been through a long dry spell that caused many people in the area to lose their crops. As I was watering my pineapple and vegetable plants, my wife asked, “What are you doing watering withered crops that are almost certainly dying?” Without thinking, I replied that I wanted to give every seedling and plant a chance to live. Even if they dry up, I will have tried my best to ensure that they lived.

    Later, I reflected on the phrase, “chance to live,” which reminded me of John 3:16. As I meditated on this passage, I thought about the deep love that God showed us in sending Jesus Christ into the world and allowing him to die for us on the cross, so that all of us could have a chance for eternal life in heaven.

    Unlike my pineapple and vegetable crops that could not make a choice to live, we have the ability to choose everlasting life by believing in Jesus Christ. Praise God that we all have the chance to believe and to receive salvation!
    Philip Polo (Nairobi, Kenya)

    Prayer:
    Dear God, thank you for giving your son for us so that we have a chance to live eternally with you. Give us the courage to share your grace and to encourage others to make the conscious choice to believe in Jesus Christ. Amen.
     
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  14. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Today's devotional from The Upper Room, for 02/19/16, is titled: The Basic pattern.

    The Scripture from the Message Bible, is Isaiah 61:10-11
    10 " I will sing for joy in God, explode in praise from deep in my soul! He dressed me up in a suit of salvation, he outfitted me in a robe of righteousness, As a bridegroom who puts on a tuxedo and a bride a jeweled tiara. 11 For as the earth bursts with spring wildflowers, and as a garden cascades with blossoms, So the Master, God, brings righteousness into full bloom and puts praise on display before the nations".

    Devotional:
    When I was 12 years old, all the girls in our grade were required to take a sewing class. We were assigned three items to make: an apron, a short blouse with no buttons, and a skirt with a simple closure. For each item, everyone followed the same pattern.

    As the school year ended, girls all over campus were wearing the blouses and skirts they had made, but the shared pattern was not easily recognizable. Some had made their blouses of printed fabric that coordinated with solid-color skirts. Others had made their garments of fabrics that did not coordinate. Still others had trimmed their apparel with lace or other decorations. My mother had suggested I make both garments from the same solid blue fabric so I could wear them together as a two-piece dress. The clothes looked different on everyone.


    Something similar occurs in Christianity. Those of us who accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior are expected to follow basic guidelines such as the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule. (See Ex. 20:1-17, Deut. 5:6-21, and Matt. 7:12.) Although we follow the example of Jesus, Christianity looks different on each of us. We may wear it differently, but it still fits each one of us.
    Mary Hunt Webb (New Mexico, USA)

    Prayer:
    Dear heavenly Father, thank you for providing the pattern for salvation so that we may be clothed in righteousness and wrapped in your love. Amen.
     
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  15. Babs Hunt

    Babs Hunt Veteran Member
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    How true! The problem comes when others try to make a one size fits all Christianity.
     
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  16. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Today's devotional from The Upper Room for 3/1/16, is tiled: From Fear To Strength.;)

    The scripture from The Message Bible, is Psalm 91:14-16
    14 "If you'll hold on to me for dear life," says God, "I'll get you out of any trouble. I'll give you the best of care if you'll only get to know and trust me. 15 Call me and I'll answer, be at your side in bad times; I'll rescue you, then throw you a party. 16 I'll give you a long life, give you a long drink of salvation!"

    Devotional
    "When my late husband developed a debilitating disease in his mid-thirties — a disease that would gradually paralyze him over a 24-year period — I was afraid of what the future might hold. How would we make our living? How would the disease affect our children and our marriage? As the disease progressed and my husband’s abilities diminished, we had to continually search for ways to adjust to his new limitations.

    One of the blessings of this adversity was that through these difficult times, we sought a closer relationship with God. As I look back, I can see that even when we prayed for physical healing, which didn’t come, God was with us — strengthening and blessing our marriage and our family relationships, sustaining us financially, and upholding us through many trials. Life is not always easy, but we can trust in God’s promise to strengthen us and to help us overcome any struggle".
    Amy Arlene Anderson (Minnesota, USA)

    Prayer:
    Thank you, God, for loving us. Help us to put our trust in you, knowing that you will strengthen us and help us through difficult times. Amen.
     
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  17. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Today's devotional from The Upper Room, for 3/11/16, is titled: A Great Gift.

    The Scripture from the Message Bible, is Genesis 2:7-15.

    7 God formed Man out of dirt from the ground and blew into his nostrils the breath of life. The Man came alive - a living soul! 8 Then God planted a garden in Eden, in the east. He put the Man he had just made in it. 9 God made all kinds of trees grow from the ground, trees beautiful to look at and good to eat. The Tree-of-Life was in the middle of the garden, also the Tree-of-Knowledge-of-Good-and-Evil. 10 A river flows out of Eden to water the garden and from there divides into four rivers. 11 The first is named Pishon; it flows through Havilah where there is gold. 12 The gold of this land is good. The land is also known for a sweet-scented resin and the onyx stone. 13 The second river is named Gihon; it flows through the land of Cush. 14 The third river is named Hiddekel and flows east of Assyria. The fourth river is the Euphrates. 15 God took the Man and set him down in the Garden of Eden to work the ground and keep it in order.

    Devotional:


    Out for a walk the other day, I came across an area full of beautiful trees. As I continued on my walk I suddenly noticed trash strewn about that ruined the panorama. It seemed to make everything appear a mess and reminded me of a line from a song called “Por la Vida” by Marcos Vidal: “We have made ours what in the beginning was a loan.”

    Quite often I say that to be a Christian means to pray, repent, and have a close relationship with God. Certainly this is true, but sometimes we fail to talk about caring for God’s creation. It is a temporary gift, a loan, of such importance that we must daily remember it — and remember the One who offered it to us in the first place.

    God created this beautiful earth with boundless dedication and love and then entrusted it to us. Rather than squander this gift, we can resolve to care for, nurture, and cherish it.
    Cristy Gabriele Taveras Rodríguez (Dominican Republic)

    Prayer:

    Creator God, help us to dedicate ourselves to the task of caring for and preserving your creation. We pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
     
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  18. Bonnie Thomas

    Bonnie Thomas Very Well-Known Member
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  19. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    The Scripture for today's Upper Room Devotional, is Ephesians 2:4-10. It is taken from The Message bible.;)

    4 "Instead, immense in mercy and with an incredible love, 5 he embraced us. He took our sin-dead lives and made us alive in Christ. He did all this on his own, with no help from us! 6 Then he picked us up and set us down in highest heaven in company with Jesus, our Messiah. 7 Now God has us where he wants us, with all the time in this world and the next to shower grace and kindness upon us in Christ Jesus. 8 Saving is all his idea, and all his work. All we do is trust him enough to let him do it. It's God's gift from start to finish! 9 We don't play the major role. If we did, we'd probably go around bragging that we'd done the whole thing! 10 No, we neither make nor save ourselves. God does both the making and saving. He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join him in the work he does, the good work he has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing.

    11 But don't take any of this for granted. It was only yesterday that you outsiders to God's ways 12 had no idea of any of this, didn't know the first thing about the way God works, hadn't the faintest idea of Christ. You knew nothing of that rich history of God's covenants and promises in Israel, hadn't a clue about what God was doing in the world at large. 13 Now because of Christ - dying that death, shedding that blood - you who were once out of it altogether are in on everything. 14 The Messiah has made things up between us so that we're now together on this, both non-Jewish outsiders and Jewish insiders. He tore down the wall we used to keep each other at a distance".
     
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  20. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Today's Upper Room Devotional for Tuesday may 24, 2016 is titled "God Does Not Panic". (by Sarah Sanderson, Oregon, USA) The scripture reading is from Phillipians 1:3-11, and is from The Message Bible.

    3 "Every time you cross my mind, I break out in exclamations of thanks to God. 4 Each exclamation is a trigger to prayer. I find myself praying for you with a glad heart. 5 I am so pleased that you have continued on in this with us, believing and proclaiming God's Message, from the day you heard it right up to the present. 6 There has never been the slightest doubt in my mind that the God who started this great work in you would keep at it and bring it to a flourishing finish on the very day Christ Jesus appears.

    7 It's not at all fanciful for me to think this way about you. My prayers and hopes have deep roots in reality. You have, after all, stuck with me all the way from the time I was thrown in jail, put on trial, and came out of it in one piece. All along you have experienced with me the most generous help from God. 8 He knows how much I love and miss you these days. Sometimes I think I feel as strongly about you as Christ does! 9

    So this is my prayer: that your love will flourish and that you will not only love much but well. Learn to love appropriately. You need to use your head and test your feelings 10 so that your love is sincere and intelligent, not sentimental gush. Live a lover's life, circumspect and exemplary, a life Jesus will be proud of: 11 bountiful in fruits from the soul, making Jesus Christ attractive to all, getting everyone involved in the glory and praise of God".

    Prayer: Dear God, help us to relax in the knowledge that you neither rest nor hurry as you work in our lives. Amen.
     
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  21. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    Today's Upper Room Devotional is titled "A Gentle Answer", and the Scripture from the Message Bible is Proverbs 15:1-4.

    1 A gentle response defuses anger, but a sharp tongue kindles a temper-fire. 2 Knowledge flows like spring water from the wise; fools are leaky faucets, dripping nonsense. 3 God doesn't miss a thing - he's alert to good and evil alike. 4 Kind words heal and help; cutting words wound and maim.

    Prayer: Dear God, help us consider our words before we speak them, so that what comes out of our mouths will help, not hurt. Amen.

    I like the KJV, where it says "A soft answer turneth away wrath."
     
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  22. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    I Corinthians 13:4-8, from The Message Bible;)

    "Love never gives up. Love cares more for others than for self. Love doesn't want what it doesn't have. Love doesn't strut, Doesn't have a swelled head, 5 Doesn't force itself on others, Isn't always "me first," Doesn't fly off the handle, Doesn't keep score of the sins of others, 6 Doesn't revel when others grovel, Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth, 7 Puts up with anything, Trusts God always, Always looks for the best, Never looks back, But keeps going to the end. 8 Love never dies".
     
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  23. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    The Upper Room Devotional for today, July 3,2016 is titled "How Does Jesus Do It?" It is by Lisa Gridly from Pennsylvania. The scripture is Isaiah 41:8-10,17-20, and is from The Message Bible.

    8 "But you, Israel, are my servant. You're Jacob, my first choice, descendants of my good friend Abraham. 9 I pulled you in from all over the world, called you in from every dark corner of the earth, Telling you, 'You're my servant, serving on my side. I've picked you. I haven't dropped you.' 10 Don't panic. I'm with you. There's no need to fear for I'm your God. I'll give you strength. I'll help you. I'll hold you steady, keep a firm grip on you".

    17 "The poor and homeless are desperate for water, their tongues parched and no water to be found. But I'm there to be found, I'm there for them, and I, God of Israel, will not leave them thirsty. 18 I'll open up rivers for them on the barren hills, spout fountains in the valleys. I'll turn the baked-clay badlands into a cool pond, the waterless waste into splashing creeks. 19 I'll plant the red cedar in that treeless wasteland, also acacia, myrtle, and olive. I'll place the cypress in the desert, with plenty of oaks and pines. 20 Everyone will see this. No one can miss it - unavoidable, indisputable evidence That I, God, personally did this. It's created and signed by The Holy of Israel".

    Prayer: Dear Lord, help us to look and listen for you in our lives. Help us to remember that you love us and care for us, especially in times of despair. Amen.
     
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  24. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    A man found an inspirational handwritten note in a glass Coca-Cola bottle washed up on the sand of a Melbourne beach. Adrian Trotman, 30, was walking his dog on Port Melbourne Beach with his wife Jen on Sunday when he noticed the message in a bottle. It contained a small rolled up piece of paper ripped out of a diary from December/January 2013, challenging the reader to make a drastic change in their life.
    [​IMG]
     
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  25. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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    The Upper Room Devotional for today, July14, 2016, is titled "Treading Water", by Mark H. Anderson (Pennsylvania, USA). The scripture reading is Matthew 14:22-33, and is taken from The Message Bible.

    22 As soon as the meal was finished, he insisted that the disciples get in the boat and go on ahead to the other side while he dismissed the people.
    23 With the crowd dispersed, he climbed the mountain so he could be by himself and pray. He stayed there alone, late into the night.
    24 Meanwhile, the boat was far out to sea when the wind came up against them and they were battered by the waves.
    25 At about four o'clock in the morning, Jesus came toward them walking on the water.
    26 They were scared out of their wits. "A ghost!" they said, crying out in terror.
    27But Jesus was quick to comfort them. "Courage, it's me. Don't be afraid."
    28 Peter, suddenly bold, said, "Master, if it's really you, call me to come to you on the water."
    29 He said, "Come ahead."
    30 But when he looked down at the waves churning beneath his feet, he lost his nerve and started to sink. He cried, "Master, save me!"
    31 Jesus didn't hesitate. He reached down and grabbed his hand. Then he said, "Faint-heart, what got into you?"
    32 The two of them climbed into the boat, and the wind died down.
    33 The disciples in the boat, having watched the whole thing, worshiped Jesus, saying, "This is it! You are God's Son for sure!"

    Prayer:
    Dear God, our helper, remind us to come to you when we face struggles and storms, and bring us peace. Amen.
     
    #50

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