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SEARCHLIGHT

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My Dad liked flashlights; well to be honest, he was obsessive-compulsive about flashlights.

He could never have too many. I have no idea how or when the obsession began. I recall one flashlight with a beam so bright it could have served as searchlight at a small airport.

I have enjoyed occasional airport searchlight sightings on cloudless nights. The lights slowly moved back and forth across a large expanse of the sky. Much like windshield wipers clear a rain streaked window, a searchlight clears the way for approaching air traffic.

I want a heart clear of sin…

“LORD, turn on Your searchlight!”

“Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my concerns. See if there is any offensive way in me; lead me in the everlasting way.”
                                                             Psalm 139:23-24 (HCS)

A careful search would reveal the sin of worry over finances, family, and the future. How foolish! The Father knows my needs and is faithful to meet them.

“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you. Therefore don’t worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
                                                           Matthew 6:33-34 (HCS)

MAKE HASTE!

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Make haste; there is no time to waste!

The shepherd’s story is as relevant in June as December.

“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them (Luke 2:14-20 KJV).”

When God makes the gospel truth known to us, we are compelled to make haste.

There is no time to waste.

HEALER OF THE NATIONS

8051878249_e5e5d30b78photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/95721592@N00/8051878249″>Pinot grapes</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/”>(license)</a&gt;

LORD of hosts, healer of the nations…

“I will heal their apostasy; I will freely love them, for My anger will have turned from him. I will be like the dew to Israel; he will blossom like the lily and take root like [the cedars of] Lebanon. His new SEPTEMBER 2014 002branches will spread, and his splendor will be like the olive tree, his fragrance, like [the forests of] Lebanon. The people will return and live beneath his shade. They will grow grain and blossom like the vine. His renown will be like the wine of Lebanon (Hosea 14:4-7 HCS).”

Bless the LORD of the vineyard. I cling to the life-giving vine.

“I am the vine; you are the branches. The one who remains in Me and I in Him produces much fruit, because you can do nothing without Me (John 15:5 HCS).”

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

Mission accomplished…SEPTEMBER 2014 002

It happens daily; I take on household chores. There are always dishes to wash, our bed to make and clothes to launder. Nothing glamorous about housework, I just go through the routine. Yet, there is a feeling of satisfaction when I finish the dishes, walk away from our made up bed and put way the last of folded laundry. Mission accomplished.

The Apostle Paul had a message for a certain man by the name of Archippus.

“Pay attention to the ministry you have received in the Lord, so that you can accomplish it (Colossians 4:17b HCS).”

Paul practiced what he preached.

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith (2 Timothy 4:7 HCS).”

FAITH PLUS

A faith plus works salvation standard always subtracts…SEPTEMBER 2014 002

“Some men came down from Judea and began teaching the brethren, ‘Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.’ / ‘But we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, in the same way as they also are (Acts 15:1, 11 NAS).”

If we add works to faith, in order to receive salvation, we err from scripture.

“For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast (Ephesians 2:8-9 NAS).”

CHURCHY

Church people are prone to use churchy words.SEPTEMBER 2014 002

It’s understandable; most families communicate with words and stories that outsiders would not easily discern. I find it best to define a churchy term: backslidden.

This is descriptive of a person who surrenders their life to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior; yet, slides back into bondage to sinful behavior.

The backslider does not lose their eternal salvation; sadly, they lose fellowship with the Lord and tarnish their witness.

Through tough love and discipline, God seeks restoration of relationship. If the backslider repents of his or her sins, the Lord forgives them and draws them back into the fold.

The backslider steps back!

“I have sought Your favor with all my heart; be gracious to me according to Your promise. I thought about my ways and turned my steps back to Your decrees. I hurried, not hesitating to keep Your commands (Psalm 119:58-60 HCS).”

WELL-LIGHTED PATH

SEPTEMBER 2014 002

I am far from confident when traversing  terrain that I am not accustomed to. The situation is worse if I am walking or driving in the dark.

At age sixty-six, I no longer drive at night. If an emergency arises, I will make an exception but with trepidation.

I prefer a well-lighted path that I have traveled repeatedly.

When traveling long distances by bus or plane, I do my best to acclimate myself to nighttime darkness. During frequent trips to restrooms, I use the assistance of dim floor tracking lights. In life’s journey, I depend on the LORD, the source of light and revelation.

“Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path (Psalms 119:105 KJV).”

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