Thursday, March 15, 2018

 

[dailyfoodforthought] WHO SHOULD READ THE BIBLE?

WHO SHOULD READ THE BIBLE?

 

The Young - To learn how to live.

The Old - To know how to die.

The Ignorant - For wisdom.

The Learned - For humility.

The Rich - For compassion.

The Poor - For comfort.

The Dreamer - For enchantment.

The Practical - For counsel.

The Weak - For strength.

The Strong - For direction.

The Haughty - For warning.

The Humble - For exaltation.

The Troubled - For peace.

The Weary - For rest.

The Doubting - For assurance.

The Sinner - For salvation.

The Christian - For guidance.

 

-- Author Unknown

 

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Friday, March 09, 2018

 

[dailyfoodforthought] PSALM 23 READING

PSALM 23 READING


There once was a Shakespearean actor who was known everywhere for his one-man shows of readings and recitations from the classics. He would always end his performance with a reading of Psalm 23.

 

Each night, without exception, as the actor began his recitation "The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want"... the crowd would listen attentively. And then, at the conclusion of the psalm, they would rise in thunderous applause in appreciation of the actor's incredible ability to bring the verse to life.

 

But one night, just before the actor was to offer his customary recital of Psalm 23, a young man from the audience spoke up. "Sir, do you mind if tonight I recite Psalm 23"?

 

The actor was quite taken aback by this unusual request, but he allowed the young man to come forward and stand front and center on the stage to recite the Psalm, knowing that the ability of this unskilled youth would be no match for his own talent.

 

With a soft voice, the young man began to recite the words of the Psalm. When he was finished, there was no applause. There was no standing ovation as on other nights. All that could be heard was the sound of weeping. The audience had been so moved by the young man's recitation that every eye was full of tears.

 

Amazed by what he had heard, the actor said to the youth, "I don't understand. I have been performing Psalm 23 for years. I have a lifetime of experience and training, but I have never been able to move an audience as you have tonight. Tell me, what is your secret?"

 

The young man quietly replied, "Well sir, you know the Psalm. I know the Shepherd."

 

-- Author Unknown

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Sunday, February 25, 2018

 

[dailyfoodforthought] FAILURE

FAILURE


A surprising percentage of every human life can be categorized by one courage-sapping word:  failure.

There really are no exceptions to this rule.

That includes the men and women who are typically applauded every Sunday morning as "Bible heroes."

Scripture, in fact, seems to go out of its way to spotlight the frailties and failures of its central human characters.

Moses was a murderer.  The apostle Paul appears to have arranged serial lynchings.  Abraham was a coward and a liar.  Sarah was a vindictive schemer.  David, "the man after God's own heart," was a murderer, adulterer, and consistently lousy parent.

Solomon, who was deemed the wisest man on the face of the earth, boasted 300 wives and 700 concubines – an astonishing relational track record that certainly calls into question whether he was in fact the wisest man on the face of the earth.

How about Jesus' disciples?  All of them seem to have been in the slow reading group.

The most spectacular church buildings in the world are named for apostles who sometimes failed spectacularly.

Author and pastor Tim Keller has said it best:  "The Bible is the record of God's intervening grace in the lives of people who don't seek it, who don't deserve it, who continually resist it, and who don't appreciate it, even after they have been saved by it."

In a fallen world, on this side of heaven, failure is inevitable.

But failure doesn't have to be final.  How we respond to failure is what actually shapes us.   And that makes all the difference in the world.

 

Most of us dread the possibility of making a mess of things before the watching world.  Fear keeps us from stepping out, taking risks, and attempting the audacious. 

 

Such fear will never go away – at least, not if we want to grow.

 

That's because fear and growth are like chips and salsa.  They go together.  Whenever God beckons us into a season of growth and change, the fear of failure will almost certainly present itself.

Does it feel as if you're always facing problems? 

 

That's a very good thing.

God helps us grow not by giving us the answers at the back of the book, but by providing problems that force us to choose between risk and comfort – between stepping forward and slipping back.

 

Wise people everywhere agree that the antidote to the fear of failure is actually rather simple:  don't walk away.  Stay in the chaos.  Courage grows, even by tiny increments, every time we decide to confront our problems instead of running away from them.

That sounds so simple.  But of course it's not always easy. 

 

What the Bible's "heroes" discovered is that as often as they stumbled and got things wrong, their failures didn't have to be final. 

 

That's because they learned the most important truth of all:

Even when they fell the hardest, God had their backs.

-- Authored by Glenn McDonald


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Monday, February 19, 2018

 

[dailyfoodforthought] THE CARPENTER'S TOOLS

THE CARPENTER'S TOOLS 

 

Brother Hammer served as the chairman. The other members of the tool belt informed him that he must leave, because he was too noisy. But brother Hammer said, "If I have to leave this carpenter's shop, then brother Gimlet must go too. He's insignificant and makes a very small impression." (A gimlet is a small tool with a screw point, grooved shank, and a cross handle for boring holes).

 

Little brother Gimlet arose and said, "All right, but brother Screwdriver must go also. You have to turn him around and around to get anywhere with him."

 

Brother Screwdriver turned to the other tools in the belt and said, "If you wish, I will go, but brother Plane must leave too. All of his work is on the surface; there's no depth to what he does."

 

To this brother Plane leveled his terse reply, "Well, then, brother Saw will have to depart too. The changes he proposes always cut too deep."

 

Brother Saw complained, saying, "Brother Ruler will have to withdraw if I leave, for he's always measuring other folks as though he were the only one who is right."

 

Brother Ruler then surveyed the group and said, "Brother Sandpaper doesn't belong here either. He's rougher than he ought to be, and is always rubbing people the wrong way."

 

In the midst of the discussion, the Carpenter of Nazareth walked in. He had come to perform his day's work. He put on His tool belt and went to the workbench to make a pulpit. He employed the ruler, the saw, the plane, the hammer, the gimlet, the screwdriver, the sandpaper, and all the other tools. When the day's work was over, the pulpit was finished, and the carpenter went home. All the accusations against each of these tools were absolutely true, yet the carpenter used every one of them. No matter which tool He use, no other tool could have done the work better.

  

You and I are God's "tools". While we have our flaws, each of us has a purpose, ability, and a task to perform. Won't you let God use you today? 

 

-- Author Unknown

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Sunday, December 10, 2017

 

[dailyfoodforthought] LAYMAN’S TEN COMMANDMENTS

LAYMAN'S TEN COMMANDMENTS


Someone has written these beautiful words. The piece is a must read. Try to understand the deep meaning of it. They are like the Ten Commandments to follow in life all of the time!


1. Prayer is not a "spare wheel" that you pull out when in trouble, but it is a "steering wheel" that directs the right path throughout the journey.

2. So why is a car's WINDSHIELD so large and the Rear View Mirror so small? Because our PAST is not as important as our FUTURE. So, Look Ahead and Move on.

3. Friendship is like a BOOK. It takes a few minutes to burn, but it takes years to write.

4. All things in life are temporary. If they're going well, enjoy them... they will not last forever. If they're going wrong, don't worry... they can't last long either.

5. Old Friends are Gold! New Friends are Diamond! If you get a Diamond, don't forget the Gold! Because to hold a Diamond, you always need a Base of Gold!

6. Often when we lose hope and think this is the end, GOD smiles from above and says, "Relax, friend, it's just a bend, not the end!"

7. When GOD solves your problems, you have faith in HIS abilities; when GOD doesn't solve your problems HE has faith in your abilities.

8. A blind person asked St. Anthony: "Can there be anything worse than losing eye sight?" He replied, "Yes, losing your vision!"

9. When you pray for others, God listens to you and blesses them, and sometimes, when you are safe and happy, remember that someone has prayed for you.

10. WORRYING does not take away tomorrow's TROUBLES... it takes away today's PEACE.

If you really enjoy this, please pass on to others. It may just brighten someone's day... Live simply, Love generously, Care deeply, Speak kindly, and Leave the rest to God.

-- Author Unknown

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Saturday, December 02, 2017

 

[dailyfoodforthought] THAT WILL BE MORE THAN ENOUGH

THAT WILL BE MORE THAN ENOUGH

The B-17 Flying Fortress was America's workhorse heavy bomber during World War II. 

 

Before Germany and Japan surrendered, 12,731 of the planes dropped more than 1.5 million tons of bombs.

Among the young men on those bombing runs were actors Clark Gable and James Stewart; NFL coach Tom Landry; Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry; and future presidential candidate George McGovern, who piloted 35 missions in the "other Boeing," the B-24.

 

The Flying Fortress had a reputation for toughness.  It could withstand incredible damage, yet remain airborne.

Even so, the B-17's and their 10-man crews were often sitting ducks for enemy fighters and flak.  

 

Between 1942 and 1945, more than 40,000 American airmen never made it back home.

Elmer Bendiner, who would one day become a writer and journalist, served as navigator in the B-17 Tondelayo.

On a bombing run over Kassel, Germany, multiple shells ripped into the bomber.  One of them hit the fuel tank.

 

Bendiner and the rest of the crew braced for the explosion that would bring their lives to a fiery end.

But it never happened.  None of the other shells exploded, either. 

 

In his book The Fall of Fortresses, Bendiner remembers, "Later, as I reflected on the miracle of a 20 mm shell piercing the fuel tank without touching off an explosion, our pilot, Bohn Fawkes, told me it was not quite that simple."

The morning after the bombing run, Fawkes had gone to the crew chief in the hope of retrieving a good-luck souvenir – the shell that had lodged in the fuel tank but failed to detonate.

 

All of the "duds" that had hit the Tondelayo, including the one in the fuel tank, had already been sent to the armorers to be defused. 

 

There they made an astonishing discovery.   They were empty – "clean as a whistle and just as harmless," Fawkes told his navigator. 

 

But one of them was not quite empty. 

 

Inside was a piece of paper.  There was a message on it, written in the Czech language.  After a brief search, an American intelligence officer found someone who could read it. 

 

It said, "This is all we can do for you now." 

 

Somewhere in a munitions factory – presumably in Nazi-occupied Czech territory, and presumably staffed by forced labor – someone had made a quiet, audacious decision. 

 

One or more of the bomb-makers had decided not to arm their bombs.  In the midst of a conflict that was tearing the world apart, and threatening the futures of millions of people, this was the one humble thing they could do.

And it saved 10 lives.

We can do the same. 

 

Even if you're not in a position of public authority today, you can be a servant.  A few quiet acts of selflessness have more power to transform human hearts than a myriad of commands.

Even if you're not rich, you can be, in the words of Sri Sri Paramahansa Yogananda, a "smile millionaire."  Your willingness to smile can turn an uncertain conversation into an offer of friendship. 

 

Even if you're in the midst of major conflict, you don't have to arm that bomb you were thinking of using.  "A gentle answer turns away wrath," says Proverbs 15:1. 

 

Servanthood.  Gentleness.  Humility.  Maybe that's all you can do right now.

But that will be more than enough.

-- Authored by Glenn McDonald

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Thursday, November 30, 2017

 

[dailyfoodforthought] I'M FINE

I'M FINE
It's time to take on what some counselors and psychologists call the Other F Word.

Fine.

As in, "How are you doing?" "I'm fine, thank you."

End of conversation. End of communication. Except, "fine" hardly qualifies as an authentic meeting of minds and hearts.

"Fine" can be a one-word stand-in for a remarkable number of messages:

* I don't really have time to do more than say hello to you right now.

* I don't actually think you're interested in the details of my life, so * I'll play along and not reveal anything.

* I don't believe my life is interesting or important enough to give you more than a superficial response.

* I don't want to risk our relationship by telling you how I really feel.

Amazingly, the one thing that "fine" almost never means is "fine."

Fine is a conversational cover-up, a socially acceptable lie, concerning things I have no intention of revealing in the context of a brief greeting.

How am I? I'm just FINE, thank you: Freaked Out, Insecure, Neurotic, and Emotional.

That's what I might say if I were telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

Most of us, at any given moment, are dealing with a number of less-than-fine realities in our lives. But that doesn't mean they need to become public property.

It's not necessary – in fact, it would hardly be possible – to pause every time someone asks pleasantly, "And how are you this morning?" to bravely reveal all our darkest thoughts. If your goal is always to ride the elevator alone, however, this might be a useful first step to take.

What's a healthy way forward?

Start small. Open your heart to someone you already know. Instead of saying, "fine," risk saying something like, "You know, the last few days have been pretty rough, and I've been struggling."

That may or may not prompt a deeper conversation.

But at the very least you'll have revealed yourself to be a perfectly normal imperfect human being. And that's always a good thing.

Or try changing the question. Instead of defaulting to "How's it going?" when greeting someone, pause and ask something like, "Anything new or different happening in your world today?"

Not only is it impossible to answer such a question by saying "fine," you've at least provided an opportunity for someone to reassess the meaning of their next few hours.

Some of my friends, when asked "How are you today?" invariably provide a different one-word answer: "Blessed."

To be blessed is a wonderful thing. It means to be loved, called, chosen, forgiven, and redeemed by God.

Best of all, even on those days when we are freaked out, insecure, neurotic, and emotional we can say, with complete honesty, that we know we are still blessed – because God will never change his mind about us.

And you have to admit that's mighty fine.

-- Authored by Glenn McDonald

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