Loving One Another

Posts tagged ‘Bible’

Grow Through Temptation


Does temptation lift
Its ugly head around you?
Cookies and parties?

Do you look at fun
As life’s diversion from Christ?
That’s not His intent!

Christianity
Is built sure on nothing less
Than Christ’s love and joy

He intends for us
To experience His FUN
In the Spirit’s fruit:

Galatians 5:22-23

“When the Holy Spirit
controls our lives,
he will produce this kind
of fruit in us,
love, JOY, peace.
patience, kindness, goodness,
faithfulness, and self-control.

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Yesterday I went
To a FUN cookie exchange
Temptation abounds!

In his book,
Daily Inspirations for the Purpose Driven Life,
Rick Warren wrote,
“God uses the opposite situation of each fruit to allow us a choice.
Integrity is built by defeating the temptation…”

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When I learn, “No Thanks,”
I grow (through the temptation)
In spirit, not pounds!

Good luck with the fruit of self-control today!
See ya later!

Why Practice Giving?


Why practice giving? What’s in it for me?

Many Ways

There are many ways to “give.” My mailbox is overflowing everyday this time of year for requests to give – donate to St. Judes or St. Joseph’s Indian School; donate to Foot and Mouth Painters or Salvation Army; make an extra donation to Guideposts or my church or the Food Bank. And don’t even ask me how many text messages and e-mails I receive each day from political candidates! Yes, giving money is one way to practice giving… and if you have dough to spare, there are needy, worthy causes out there.

But do you know for sure what percentage of your hard-earned bucks are going to the intended cause? Can you see the light in the eyes of the recipient?

Face-to-Face

Giving face-to-face changes your life as well as the recipient’s. Pay it forward in the grocery line. Give a hug. Share your talent at a nursing home … maybe it’s a visit and a hug or a half hour of your time to read a little from your favorite poems. Maybe it’s a meal in your home with friends you’d like to have a chance to know better. And you’d like them to know each other. Maybe it’s transportation to an appointment for someone without a car. Perhaps it is time with a child (yours or someone else’s… doesn’t matter… just be there!).

Think of giving in non-monetary terms. Give of yourself. Give joyfully! Why?

Give as the Lord’s Example

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Generosity Encouraged

2 Corinthians 9:6-9
Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. As it is written: “They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor; their righteousness endures forever.”

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God Bless You, dear Friends.
Have you decided on
an answer to “What’s in it for me?”

I hope you’re having a “good” day.
Thank you for being such generous givers!
Tell me about the last time you “gave” – what was it?

Merry Christmas!
See you tomorrow.

God’s Miracle: Church


Sermon notes from today’s service in Ennis. Montana – Rev. Steve Hundley
Taken in poetry as I listened – written through JanBeek’s filters.

Church: A Miracle of God

I can’t scold you today –
Not because we are in this place,
Not because I’m in a good mood,
But because of the love in this space.

Because of the words of Paul
(the ones our Paul read so well today),
I am encouraged to join in
With what Gentle Jesus had to say.

He wrote to the Thessalonians
While he was out traveling, making a tent,
“We were gentle among you,” He said.
“We spoke soft words – whispered encouragement.”

Paul’s words to other churches
Were not so gentle and kind.
But to the Thessalonians, He set aside
Sternness – and praised the ties that bind.

The Gospel is a powerful book.
It can and does transform lives.
We are astonished at how God’s Word
Teaches, changes folks, lives, and survives.

The church, like the one in Thessalonica,
Is a place where people love and give.
They pray for you, they stay with you,
They make life better and help you live.

Our old church in McAllister, Montana was built in the early 1900s.
It has no running water, so when we use it for church services
once a year, we have to rent a porta-potty, chase the mice away,
and clean the mouse droppings from the chairs and alter.

But, it is a place that reminds of how simple God’s church can be.
It doesn’t have to be a large, elaborate cathedral to be worshipful.

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It is not the building that makes a church. In the early days, many of the “church services” were held in people’s homes. Some people in today’s world still hold their worship services in living rooms, tents, or on an open hillside. The Miracle of God that is His Church is not the place, but the people.

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Wherever we gather, with the focus on worship of our God, He is with us.
That’s what Paul was telling the church of Thessalonica.

1 Thessalonians 2:9-13 was what
our scripture volunteer,
Paul Carlson, read to us today:

“Surely you remember, brothers and sisters,
our toil and hardship;
we worked night and day
in order not to be a burden to anyone
while we preached the gospel of God to you.
You are witnesses, and so is God,
of how holy, righteous, and blameless
we were among you who believed.
For you know that we dealt with each of you
as a father deals with his own children,
encouraging, comforting and urging you
to live lives worthy of God,
who calls you into His kingdom and glory.
And we also thank God continually because,
when you received the word of God,
which you heard from us,
you accepted it not as a human word,
but as it actually is, the word of God,
which is indeed at work in you who believe.”

As Christians, members of His Church, that is our goal: to hear His Word, and respond to it by encouraging, comforting, and urging fellow Christians to live lives that demonstrate He is indeed at work in us. That is what makes our church “God’s Miracle.” Not the building, but we, the people.

Whether we are in our old McAllister treasure, or our salmon-colored church in downtown Ennis, our job is to love one another, support one another, and spread the Word to those who may not know the Peace of Christ that “passeth all understanding.”

Philippians 4:7
“And the peace of God,
which transcends all understanding,
will guard your hearts and your minds
in Christ Jesus.”

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God Bless You, my friends.
I hope you have the joy
of a supportive church family.
And I pray that you are one of those
who is God’s hand at work in this world.
Have a lovely Sunday night.

See ya tomorrow.

One Kind Word


Kind words are easy
Spoken from a sincere heart
They can change a life

Think of all the words
You might speak to folks today
Do they pass the test?

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Are they lily pure?
Is every word uplifting?
You can’t take them back!

Words spoken with love
Can be the perfume of life
Hurtful words just stink!

Ever smelled a “Stink bug”?

We have declared November to be the month of kindness and gratitude. Not just kindness to those who are kind to us, but kindness to to everyone and everything. Kindness to ourselves, our neighbors, our pets, the neighbor’s pets, our plants and trees… even kindness to those who hurt us!

Let our words be like the fertilizer that helps others to change and grow.

One kind word can change someone’s entire day.
One kind word might even change a life.

What’s a word you might say today from your sincere heart that will brighten someone’s day? It doesn’t have to be eloquent. It isn’t flattery. It’s just simple and honest.

I love that you are here on JanBeek today. You make my day brighter with your “like” and your comment.

But, you really lift my spirit when you are inspired to take the message to heart – and go out and LIVE a LIFE of LOVE.

Sing along with this beautiful song that reminds us to speak and sing and think and live in the perfume of “Wonderful Words of Life.”

Feed your mind loving words…
“Wonderful words, beautiful words, wonderful words of life”
and then go out and feed others!

See ya later.

You Are Mine


As this day – a day in the USA to remember and honor our veterans – draws to an end, I am encouraged by the ways God reassures us of our destiny… and theirs.

My heart goes out to the parents, spouses, children, and loved ones of our fallen heroes. God bless those who made the ultimate sacrifice to defend our country and our freedom.

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But my greatest gratitude goes to my Lord who assures us that He will bring us home … and He will be our strength, our light, our hope.

In 1991 David Haas, inspired by Ps. 46:10, Isaiah 43:1 and John 14:27 wrote “You Are Mine,” a song that speaks to my soul.

“I will come to you in the silence,

I will lift you from all your fear.

You will hear my voice,

I claim you as my choice,

Be still and know I am here.

I am hope for all who are hopeless,

I am sight for all who long to see.

In the shadows of the night,

I will be your light,

Come and rest in me.

Do not be afraid, I am with you.

I have called you each by name.

Come and follow me,

I will bring you home;

I love you and you are mine.

I am the strength for all the despairing,

Healing for the ones who dwell in shame.

All the blind will see, the lame will all run free,

And all will know my name.

I am the word that leads to all freedom,

I am the peace the world cannot give.

I will call your name,

Embracing all your pain,

Stand up now, walk and live!

Do not be afraid, I am with you.

I have called you each by name.

Come and follow me, I will bring you home;

I love you and you are mine.


Our loved ones who sacrificed their lives
For our freedom and for our safety
Are home in the arms of our Lord.

He said, “You are mine.”

And He meant it for Eternity.

In His Promises there is peace and assurance.

God bless you. Believe! You belong to Him.

And He has your loved ones in His Hand.

See ya tomorrow.

Be Ready!


Today’s sermon by Rev. Steve Hundley
at Madison Valley Presbyterian Church in Ennis, MT
was based on the story of Zacchaeus.
Do you know the story?

If not (or even if you do),
here it is in a nutshell:
https://youtu.be/Fe7dTNID6h8

(When you click on that link
and hear the story creatively told
in delightful, child-like cartoon format,
be sure to click the back arrow and return here!)

Find Zacchaeus in Luke 19:1-10

Pretend you are short (I don’t have to pretend).
Pretend your name is Zacchaeus and you are hated.
You are hated because you are a lying, cheating tax collector.
You are lonely.

Then you learn that Jesus is coming to your town.
You’ve heard about Him – and you want to see Him.
But, to do so, to see above the crowd, you have to climb a tree.
Pretend you are up in that tree … looking down at Jesus.

Get in the mood for today’s message!

Be Ready!

There is a growing epidemic
Of loneliness in society today.
Surprisingly, the loneliest are young adults.
Next are empty-nesters, they say.

A third group are the elderly
Who are often seen sitting alone.
Checking an empty mailbox,
They nurse their ailments and groan.

People out there in our world are lonely.
Often it’s for a reason they can’t control.
Other times, it seems to be choices they make –
Like Zacchaeus, who chose his greedy, tax-collecting role.

Loneliness affects all kinds of folks, good and bad.
We cannot overcome loneliness by ourselves.
It takes the love and compassion of someone else
Who notices our empty emotional shelves.

If you are struggling with loneliness,
And you have come to church to heal it,
Look around and know the love of Christ
Is in the hearts of those around you. Can you feel it?

Zacchaeus climbed a tree so he could see Jesus.
This lonely, short, little man wanted a view
Of the man he had heard so much about.
Would you climb a tree to see Christ? In faith, will you?

Be ready – if you are lonely and you look
For God and love by goin’ somewhere strange.
Be ready – because God will find you there.
He’ll find you where you are; and you will change!

Be ready!

I’m lookin’ up to find you!
Reach out to the lonely.
Reach out in prayer, in hugs,
in compassion.

Have a beautiful Sunday afternoon.

Look up!!
See ya tomorrow.

Go Mark Up Your Bible


It’s okay to write
All over the Bible page
Try on the scriptures

Let them show to you
The messages of your heart
Picture the sunset

Remember goodness
Take the righteousness and truth
Take light from God’s love

Make your face to shine
On the pages of scripture
Carry His statutes

Give thanks to the Lord
His love endures forever
Rejoice and be glad

It’s another day
To mark a fav’rite scripture
It’s OK. Take joy!

Go sing a new song!

Sing with the angels!
He has done marvelous things!
I’ll see ya later.

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