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Our Daily Bread

May 10, 2005

The Answer Is No

Read: 2 Samuel 12:13-23

David arose from the ground, . . . and he went into the house of the Lord and worshiped. -2 Samuel 12:20

Children are so lovable and innocent-until their parents say no to their demands. When that happens, some kids scream uncontrollably, insisting on what they want.

When our children were little, my wife and I thought it was important for them to learn to accept no for an answer. We felt this would help them to handle the disappointments of life more effectively. We prayed that it would also help them submit to God's will.

Today's Bible reading records King David's admission of guilt when confronted by Nathan. David was forgiven, but God let the consequence of his sin fall on the baby conceived out of wedlock. David fasted and prayed to the Lord day and night for his son's healing. In spite of his sincere petitions, the baby died.

Instead of behaving like a demanding child and being angry with God, David got up, washed, changed his clothes, "went into the house of the Lord, and worshiped" (2 Samuel 12:20). His actions teach us an important lesson: Sometimes we must accept no from God as the answer to our pleas.

In times of difficulty or loss (such as a marriage we desperately want to reconcile-WS), we should seek God's help and deliverance. But we must still trust Him if He does not answer our prayers the way we want Him to.

Have we learned to take no for an answer? -Albert Lee

I do accept Your will, O God,

And all Your ways adore;

And every day I live I'll seek

To please You more and more. -Anon.

In His will is our peace. -Dante

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Does God Exist?

A Professor asks this Question: Did God create everything that exists?"A student bravely replied, "Yes, he did!""God created everything?" The professor asked. "Yes sir," the student replied.The professor answered, "If God created everything, then God created evil, since evil exists, and according to the principal that our works define who we are, then God is evil." The student became quiet before such an answer.The professor, quite pleased with himself, boasted to the studentsthat he had proven once more that the Christian faith was a myth.

Another student raised his hand and said, "Can I ask you a questionprofessor?" "Of course," replied the professor. The student stood up and asked, "Professor, does cold exist?" "What kind of question is this? Of course it exists. Have you never been cold?" The students snickered at the young man's question. The young man replied, "In fact sir, cold does not exist. According to the laws of physics, what we consider cold is in reality the absence of heat. Every body or object is susceptible to study when it has or transmits energy, and heat is what makes a body or matter have or transmit energy. Absolute zero (- 460 degrees F) is the total absence of heat; all matterbecomes inert and incapable of reaction at that temperature. Cold does not exist. We have created this word to describe how we feel if we have no heat."

The student continued, "Professor, does darkness exist?" The professor responded, "Of course it does."The student replied, "Once again you are wrong sir, darkness does notexist either. Darkness is in reality the absence of light. Light we can study , but not darkness. In fact we can use Newton's prism to break white light into many colors and study the various wavelengths of each color. You cannot measure darkness. A simple ray of light can break into a world of darkness and illuminate it. How can you know how dark a certain space is? You measure the amount of light present. Isn't this correct? Darkness is a term used by man to describe what happens when there is no light present."

Finally the young man asked the professor, "Sir, does evil exist?" Now uncertain, the professor responded, "Of course as I have already said. We see it every day. It is in the daily example of man's inhumanity to man.It is in the multitude of crime and violence everywhere in the world.These manifestations are nothing else but evil."To this the student replied, "Evil does not exist sir, or at least itdoes not exist unto itself. Evil is simply the absence of God. It is just like darkness and cold, a word that man has created to describe the absence of God. God did not create evil. Evil is not like faith, or love that exist just as does l light and heat. Evil is the result of what happens when man does not have God's love present in his heart. It's like the cold that comes when there is no heat or the darkness that comes when there is no light."

The professor sat down.

The young man's name --- Albert Einstein
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A promise of hope!

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the LORD, “and will bring you back from captivity”. Jeremiah 29:11-14

When you read that passage don’t you just want to say hallelujah! What great comfort is found in God’s promise of hope! God knows the future and knows that the best way is His way. He also encourages us to ask Him what those plans are. Our plans are sometimes haphazard attempts to attain what we think is the best for us. God’s plans are for a hope and a future, prosperous and not harmful.

Seek God and He will be found by you! He will bring you back from captivity! What is your captivity? Could it be unforgiveness?Addiction? Disobedience? Whatever the captivity you can be free! That is the great promise of hope!

Father God, I want to know your way for my life! I know your plans are best for me and I want my life to glorify you! Bring me out of my captivity to the hope and future you have promised! For your glory, Amen!

Let His LOVE light the path on your journey of life.
New Life Ministries
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I am not my own, I was bought with a price. And then, once having paid for
me; having bought the right to own, possess, control and use me; the
Purchaser turned and wordlessly handed me the receipt, giving me back
myself-free and clear-nothing owed.

How can I not fall at the feet of such a Master?

How can I not throw open the doors, windows, basement and attic of my life?

How can I not invite Him beyond the formal living room, to take me by the
hand and search out all of the monsters and carcasses that I fear live in
that dark, smelly basement?

How can I not show him the attic; so many boxes, trunks and old cabinets
full of unrealized dreams, file drawers full of phases of my life that are
painful to revisit?
Click to read complete article
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An Ode to my Lord

I give you praise and worship thee.
For my Lord you've set me free.
You gave your life at Calvary.
And as I pray before your throne.
I realize I'm not alone.
I feel your presence everywhere.
And I know that you are there.
And as I walk in your grace.
And take a step toward you in faith.
You meet me there, where I stand.
And reach out to take my hand.
As we walk the path of life.
You help me through the pain and strife.
We walk together hand in hand.
On our way to the promise land.
Deaths defeated, the battle won.
The sins of all paid by the Son.
No more sorrow, no more pain.
Forever and ever He will reign.

Gary M. Westrom 4-6-05

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The Student

T-shirt with holes in it, jeans, and no shoes.
This was literally his wardrobe for his entire four years of college. He is brilliant. Kind of esoteric and very, very bright. He became a Christian while attending college.

Across the street from the campus is a well-dressed, very conservative church. They want to develop a ministry to the students but are not sure how to go about it.

One day Bill decides to go there. He walks in with no shoes, jeans, his T-shirt, and wild hair. The service has already started and so Bill starts down the aisle looking for a seat. The church is completely packed and he can't find a seat. By now, people are really looking a bit uncomfortable, but no one says anything. Bill gets closer and closer and closer to the pulpit, and when he realizes there are no seats, he just squats down right on the carpet
Click to read complete article
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By definition, grace is something we can’t give ourselves. It comes from outside of us, as unmerited favor. We can’t do anything to obtain grace. And part of the outside God uses to dispense his grace is other people. As people use their gifts, they are “faithfully administering God’s grace in various forms”. 1 Peter 4:10. God made us stewards over the administration of his grace.

Many ministers have heard their parishioners say, “I know in my head that God forgives me and accepts me, but I can’t feel it in my heart.” They have memorized verses on forgiveness, God’s love and acceptance, their position of grace, and all the related doctrines. They “know” the information in their heads, but they are far from “knowing” it in their hearts. They commonly think this “head” knowledge is somehow going to “sink in” to their hearts. This is not the way things work.
Click to read whole article