Easter|Death and Life [v14]

APRIL 2000

GREETINGS—Easter is coming!…a time that kids (and me) run around excited to find the eggs that have been hidden for them. A time of “birth”—the beginning of new life in the springtime.

The Easter egg, in the “early” centuries, had bestowed upon it a religious interpretation, becoming a symbol of the rock tomb out of which Christ emerged to the new life of His resurrection. There was, in addition, a very practical reason for making the egg a special sign of Easter joy, since it used to be one of the foods that were forbidden in Lent. The faithful, from early times, painted Easter eggs in gay colors, had them blessed, ate them, and gave them to friends as Easter gifts.

The focus of all this is LIFE—but, as all of us will experience, death, a very somber experience, can really be the “beginning of life”

It’s frightening to realize how quickly a life can be snuffed out. One moment a man named Ronald Nunley was fine, the next he was almost buried in a fiery grave of burning logs and liquid fuel (contact me if you want the detailed story). But two very courageous people offered to help Ron and save him from a certain death—but Ron had to TRUST in them that they could do it!

In a very real sense all of us are in a similar situation. The problem is that we don’t realize it because what is happening isn’t compressed into forty-five minutes. It covers a lifetime and happens so slowly that we don’t notice it. We’re like the proverbial frog that is boiled to death because it happens so slowly.

Many a student has seen this point demonstrated. The teacher places a hapless frog in a beaker of water beneath which he places a Bunsen burner. The flame is so low that it heats the water at only .017 of a degree Fahrenheit per second. The temperature rises so gradually that the frog is oblivious to any change. Without an ounce of resistance, two-and-a-half hours later the frog is dead—boiled to death.

Amidst the rush and hullabaloo of contemporary living, like the relentless beat of the ocean waves, or like the never-ending ticking of a giant eternal clock, Christmas and Easter come around every year as an inescapable reminder that. First, we live in a world broken by sin that is slowly moving us toward an inescapable and eternal death, and second, that God himself has come to earth to save us from our sin and the death it causes.

We have many ideas about what sin is, but because its effects take place so slowly, we tend to ignore it. We think of sin mostly as external acts: a lie, a murder, a theft, a rape, and so on. True, these are sins, but they are merely the tip of the iceberg. Because most of us don’t go around raping, killing, or robbing people, we don’t consider ourselves as sinners in need of God’s salvation.

We fail to see that our damaged and super-charged repressed negative emotions, our irrational fears, blind spots, emptiness, emotional dishonesty, damaged self-concept and mixed motives are also sinful. These are the sins of the spirit and possibly the most destructive of all because they are the causes behind most external sins, broken relationships, and physical and mental sicknesses.

When we begin to understand the total destructiveness of sin, we can begin to appreciate why God is so opposed to it. Sadder still is the fact that our sin not only alienates us from one another and our own selves, but also from God, and ultimately leads to both physical and spiritual death.

That’s the bad news. But here’s the GOOD NEWS. Like the two people, who risked their lives to save Ronald Nunley, God saw us in our helpless predicament and came in the person of his Son, Jesus Christ, to save us.

When Jesus came to earth two thousand years ago, he came not to risk his life, but, specifically, to give it on the cross. There, Jesus died to pay sin’s consequences and penalty so that we might be set free for all eternity.

My friend, Jesus died on the cross for you and now offers you a FREE PARDON for all your sin and wants to give you the gift of eternal life. It is a FREE GIFT, and is yours for the taking.

What would you think of Ronald Nunley had he rejected the gift of life given to him, and never bothered to thank the men who risked their lives to save him? How foolish he would have been. But have you ever admitted your need to God, confessed your sins to him, thanked Jesus Christ for dying on the cross for you, and accepted his pardon and gift of eternal life?

Usually we think of Christmas when someone mentions “gifts,” but the greatest gift, and a FREE one at that, was originally given about two thousand years ago, just about this time of year—It’s the gift of NEW LIFE, one that will last forever—and one that’s still available to you today!

[Ron Nunley story from: Reader’s Digest, September, 1981]

Blessings,
Mark

LIFE’S DEEP THOUGHTS (v14) for APRIL 2000
(NOTE: Please send your ‘thoughts’ to me at: mbesh@ameritech.net)

I am glad to organize and distribute more ‘stuff’ if y’all send it to me… Thank you’s to:

Richard Bachman
Lezlie Besh
Joe Olson
Rex Roy
Cher’re Walters
Suzie Wilkinson
Joanne Wiegand
John Wolak

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The day is over and you are driving home. You tune in your radio. You hear a little blurb about a little village in India where some Villagers have died suddenly, strangely, of a flu that has never been seen before. It’s not influenza, but three of four people are dead, and its kind of interesting, and they are sending some doctors over there to investigate it. You don’t think much about it, but on Sunday, coming home from church, you hear another radio spot. Only they say its not three Villagers, its 30,000 villagers in the back hills of this particular area of India, and it’s on TV that night. CNN runs a little blurb; people are heading there from the disease center in Atlanta because this disease strain has never been seen before. By Monday morning when you get up, it’s the lead story. For its not just India; its Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran and before you know it, you’re hearing this story everywhere and they have coined it now as “the mystery flu.”

The President has made some comment that he and everyone are praying and hoping that all will go well over there. But everyone is wondering, How are we going to contain it? That’s when the President of France makes an announcement that shocks Europe. He is closing their borders. No flights from India, Pakistan, or any of the countries where this thing has been seen. And that’s why that night you are watching a little bit of CNN before going to bed.

Your jaw hits your chest when a weeping woman is translated from a French news program into English — There’s a man lying in a hospital in Paris dying of the mystery flu. It has come to Europe. Panic strikes. As best they can tell, once you get it you have it for a week before you know it. Then you have four days of unbelievable symptoms. And then you die. Britain closes its borders, but its too late. South Hampton, Liverpool, North Hampton and it’s Tuesday morning when the President of the United States makes the following announcement:

“Due to a national security risk, all flights to and from Europe and Asia have been canceled. If your loved ones are overseas, I’m sorry. They cannot come back until we find a cure for this thing.”

Within four days our nation has been plunged into an unbelievable fear. People are talking about “What if it comes to this country”? And preachers on Tuesday are saying it’s the scourge of God. Its Wednesday night and you are at a church prayer meeting when somebody runs in from the parking lot and says “Turn on a radio, turn on a radio!” And while the church listens to a little transistor radio with a microphone stuck up to it, the following announcement is made:

“Two women are lying in a Long Island hospital dying from the mystery flu. Within hours it seems, this thing just sweeps across the country. People are working around the clock trying to find an antidote. Nothing is working. California, Oregon, Arizona, Florida and Massachusetts. It’s as though it’s just sweeping in from the borders. And then all of a sudden the news comes out. The code has been broken. A cure can be found. A vaccine can be made. Its going to take the blood of somebody who hasn’t been infected and so, sure enough, all through the Midwest, through all those channels of emergency broadcasting, everyone is asked to do one simple thing: Go to your downtown hospital and have your blood type taken. That’s all we ask of you. When you hear the sirens go off in your neighborhood, please make your way quickly, quietly and safely, to the hospitals.”

Sure enough, when you and your family get down there late on that Friday night, there is a long line and they’ve got nurses and doctors coming out and pricking fingers and taking blood and putting labels on it. Your wife and your kids are out there, and they take your blood type and they say, “wait here in the parking lot and if we call your name you can be dismissed and go home.” You stand around, scared, with your neighbors, wondering what in the world is going on and if this is the end of the World.

Suddenly a young man comes running out of the hospital screaming. He’s yelling a name and waving a clipboard. What? He yells it again! And your son tugs on your jacket and says, “Daddy, that’s me.” Before you know it, they have grabbed your boy. “Wait a minute. Hold on!” And they say, “Its okay, his blood is clean. His blood is pure. We want to make sure he doesn’t have the disease. We think he has got the right type.”

Five tense minutes later, out come the doctors and nurses crying and hugging one another, some are even laughing. It’s the first time you have seen anybody laugh in a week, and an old doctor walks up to you and says, “Thank you sir. Your son’s blood type is perfect. It’s clean, it is pure, and we can make the vaccine.” As the word begins to spread all across that parking lot full of folks, people are screaming and praying and laughing and crying. But then the gray-haired doctor pulls you and your wife aside and says, “May we see you for a moment?”

“We didn’t realize that the donor would be a minor and we need…..we need you to sign a consent form.” You begin to sign and then you see that the number of pints of blood to be taken is empty. “H-h-h-ow many pints?” And that is when the old doctor’s smile fades and he says, “We had no idea it would be a little child. We weren’t prepared. We need it all!”  “But-but . . . . I don’t understand. He’s my only son!”

“We are talking about the world here. Please sign. We. . .we need it all!” “But can’t you give him a transfusion?” “If we had clean blood we would. Please, will you please sign?” In numb silence you do. Then they say, “would you like to have a moment with him before we begin?”

Could you walk back? Could you walk back to that room where he sits on a table saying, “Daddy? Mommy?”

What’s going on?” Could you take his hands and say, “Son, your mommy and I love you and we would never ever let anything happen to you that didn’t just have to be. Do you understand that?”

And when that old doctor comes back in and says, “I’m sorry, we’ve got to get started. People all over the world are dying.” Could you leave? Could you walk out while he is saying, “Dad? Mom? Dad? Why …why have you forsaken me?”

And then next week, when they have the ceremony to honor your son, and some folks sleep through it, and some folks don’t even bother to come because they have better things to do, and some folks come with just a pretentious smile and just pretend to care.

Would you want to jump up and say, “EXCUSE ME!  MY SON DIED FOR YOU!  DON’T YOU EVEN CARE?  DOESN’T IT MEAN ANYTHING TO YOU?”

I wonder, is that what God wants to say? “MY SON DIED FOR YOU!
DOESN’T IT MEAN ANYTHING? DON’T YOU KNOW HOW MUCH I CARE?”

Father, seeing it from your eyes should break our hearts. Maybe now we can begin to comprehend the great love you have for us. So that’s the gospel (the “Good News”), in a nutshell.

[Received from Lezlie Besh]

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THE HISTORY OF APRIL FOOL’S DAY

“The first of April is the day we remember what we are the other 364 days
of the year.” — Mark Twain

How do you think April Fools’ Day originated? Did some joker in biblical
times decide to switch the frankincense and the myrrh? Was there a historic
epidemic of spring fever-tomfoolery in a tiny Finnish town in the early
1800s? Did a New Yorker in 1910 find a cockroach in his coffee cup and
decide to recreate the experience for his officemate, thereby sparking a
famous April 1 lawsuit? In a convincing testimonial to the saying that
truth is stranger than fiction, we’ll tell you the story, or at least
present the most viable theory, of how April Fools’ Day came to be.

Once upon a time, back in 16th-century France, before computers, people
celebrated New Year’s Day on March 25, the advent of spring. It was a
festive time. They partied steadily until April 1.

In 1564, when the calendar reformed and became Gregorian, King Charles IX proclaimed, perhaps pompously, that New Year’s Day should be celebrated on January 1 instead of in the spring. Diehard conservatives resisted the change (or perhaps didn’t hear about it due to the absence of e-mail) and continued to celebrate New Year’s from March 25 to April 1. During this period of spring festivity, the more flexible French mocked the rigid revelers by sending them foolish gifts and invitations to non-existent parties.

The victim of an April Fools’ Day prank was called a “poisson d’avril,” or an “April fish,” because at that time of year, the sun was leaving the
zodiacal sign of Pisces. April Fools’ Day hit its stride (avoiding the
banana peel) in England in the 18th century, and was brought to colonial
America by the English, Scottish, and French……No fooling!

[Kevin P McCarthy] – [Received from John Wolak]

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Ruth went to her mailbox and there was only one letter. She picked it up and looked at it before opening, but then she looked at the envelope again. There was no stamp, no postmark, only her name and address. She read the letter:

Dear Ruth,

I’m going to be in your neighborhood Saturday afternoon and I’d like to stop by for a visit.

Love Always,
Jesus

Her hands were shaking as she placed the letter on the table. “Why would the Lord want to visit me?  I’m no body special.  I don’t have anything to offer.” With that thought, Ruth remembered her empty kitchen cabinets.

“Oh my goodness, I really don’t have anything to offer. I’ll have to run down to the store and buy something for dinner.” She reached for her purse and counted out its contents. “Five dollars and forty-cents. Well, I can get some bread and cold cuts, at least.” She threw on her coat and hurried out the door. A loaf of French bread, a half-pound of sliced turkey, and a carton of milk…leaving Ruth with grand total of twelve cents to last her until Monday.

Nonetheless, she felt good as she headed home, her meager offerings tucked under her arm. “Hey lady, can you help us, lady?” Ruth had been so absorbed in her dinner plans, she hadn’t even noticed two figures huddled in the alleyway. A man and a woman, both of them dressed in little more than rags. “Look lady, I ain’t got a job, ya know, and my wife and I have been living out here on the street, and, well, now it’s getting cold and we’re getting kinda hungry and, well, if you could help us, lady, we’d really appreciate it.” Ruth looked at them both.  They were dirty, they smelled bad and frankly, she was certain that they could get some kind of work if they really wanted to.

“Sir, I’d like to help you, but I’m a poor woman myself.  All I have is a few cold cuts and some bread, and I’m having an important guest for dinner tonight and I was planning on serving that to him.”

Yeah, well, okay lady, I understand.  Thanks anyway.”  The man put his arm around the woman’s shoulders, turned and headed back into the alley. As she watched them leave, Ruth felt a familiar twinge in her heart. “Sir, wait!” The couple stopped and turned as she ran down the alley after them. “Look, why don’t you take this food. I’ll figure out something else to serve my guest.”

She handed the man her grocery bag. “Thank you lady. Thank you very much!” “Yes, thank you!” It was the man’s wife, and Ruth could see now that she was shivering. “You know, I’ve got another coat at home. Here, why don’t you take this one.” Ruth unbuttoned her jacket and slipped it over the woman’s shoulders. Then smiling, she turned and walked back to the street…without her coat and with nothing to serve her guest.

“Thank you lady! Thank you very much!” Ruth was chilled by the time she reached her front door, and worried too. The Lord was coming to visit and she didn’t have anything to offer Him. She fumbled through her purse for the door key.

But as she did, she noticed another envelope in her mailbox. “That’s odd.  The mailman doesn’t usually come twice in one day.” She took the envelope out of the box and opened it.

Dear Ruth,

It was so good to see you again. Thank you for the lovely meal. And thank you, too, for the beautiful coat.

Love Always,
Jesus

The air was still cold, but even without her coat, Ruth no longer noticed.

[Received from Joanne Wiegand]

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Two robins were sitting on a branch high in a tree. One looked down and saw a field full of worms. Turning to the second bird he said, “We ought to go down there and eat.”

“Good idea,” said his friend.

The two of them flew down to the field and ate their fill and then some.
When he could eat no more one said to the other, “You know, we ought to
stop eating and fly back to our branch.”

Rubbing his belly the second responded, “Yep.”

With that they tried to fly to their branch in the tree, but they had eaten
too much to get off the ground. The second one said, “Maybe we should just stay here and relax in the sun.” Before long the two birds slept, basking in the afternoon sun.

As they slept, a cat happened upon the field. Seeing the birds, sleeping,
and oblivious to his presence, the cat pounced. As feather s settled around
him, the cat rubbed his belly, and said, “There is nothing better than baskin robbins.”

[Forwarded by De Long]

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– I am a nutritional overachiever.
– I am having an out of money experience.
– A day without sunshine is like night.
– A gentleman is one who knows how to play the accordion . . . and
doesn’t.
– When did my wild oats turn to prunes and all bran?
– If at first you do succeed, try not to look astonished.
– I tried to get a life once, but they told me they were out of stock.
– Some day’s you’re the dog, and some day’s you’re the hydrant.
– Living on Earth is expensive, but it does include a trip around
the sun.
– Lead me not into temptation… since I can find the way myself.
– I started with nothing. I still have most of it.

[Received from Cher’re Walters]

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THE POWER TO CHANGE

When driving past a huge dam that holds back untold millions of gallons or water, you would probably marvel at all the power harnessed there. But to see the greatest evidence of the dam’s power, you would need to travel to a residential area, walk into a darkened room, flip the switch on the wall, and watch the room light up.

In the same way, the power of the Resurrection is best evidenced not in a fantastic display of faith, but in the most intimate places of our hearts, where we can see that the darkness has been changed to light.

Are there signs of resurrection power in your life? Are dark corners in your heart being illuminated by the Lord and transformed into areas of holiness?

[Charles R. Swindoll]

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Two gas company servicemen, a senior training supervisor and a young trainee, were out checking meters in a suburban neighborhood. They parked their truck at the end of the alley and worked their way to
the other end. At the last house an older woman was looking out her kitchen window watching the two men as they checked her gas meter.

Finishing the meter check, the senior supervisor challenged his younger coworker to a foot race down the alley and back to the truck to prove that an older guy could outrun a younger one.

As they came running up to the truck, they realized the lady from that last house was huffing and puffing right behind them. They stopped and asked her what was wrong.

Gasping for breath, she replied, “When I see two gas men running as hard as you two were, I figure I’d better run too!”

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All I Really Need to Know I learned from Noah’s Ark:

1. Don’t miss the boat.
2. Don’t forget that we’re all in the same boat.
3. Plan ahead.  It wasn’t raining when Noah built the ark.
4. Stay fit.  When you’re 600 years old, someone might ask you to do something REALLY big.
5. Don’t listen to critics, just get on with what has to be done.
6. Build your future on high ground.
7. For safety’s sake, travel in pairs.
8. Two heads are better than one.
9. Speed isn’t always an advantage; after all, the snails were on the ark with the cheetahs!
10. When you’re stressed, float a while.
11. Remember that the ark was built by amateurs; the Titanic was built by professionals.
12. Remember that the woodpeckers inside are a larger threat than the storm outside.
13. No matter the storm, when God is with you, there’s a rainbow waiting.

[Received from Suzi Wilkinson]

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Mary had a little lamb;
His fleece was white as snow.
And everywhere that Mary went;
The Lamb was sure to go.

He followed her to school each day,
T’wasn’t even in the rule.
It made the children laugh and play,
To have a Lamb at school.

And then the rules all changed one day,
Illegal it became;
To bring the Lamb of God to school,
Or even speak His Name.

Every day got worse and worse,
And days turned into years.
Instead of hearing children laugh,
We heard gunshots and tears.

What must we do to stop the crime,
That’s in our schools today?
Let’s let the Lamb come back to school,
And teach our kids to pray!

[Received from “net153”]

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EXPLAINING COMPUTERS

If a packet hits a pocket on a socket on a port,
and the bus is interrupted as a very last resort,
and the address of the memory makes your floppy disc abort,
then the socket packet pocket has an error to report.

If your cursor finds a menu item followed by a dash,
and the double-clicking icon puts your window in the trash,
and your data is corrupted ’cause’ the index does not flash,
then your situation’s hopeless and your systems gonna crash!

If the label on the cable on the table at your house,
says the network is connected to the button on your mouse,
but your packets want to tunnel on another protocol,
that’s repeatedly rejected by the printer down the hall,
and your screen is all distorted by the side effects of gauss,
so your icons in the window are as wavy as a souse,
then you may as well reboot and go out with a bang,
’cause as sure as I’m a poet, the sucker’s gonna hang.

[Received from the Clean Humor Digest]

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My brother said “Amen” after grace one night, and one of his children asked what Amen meant. Before he or his wife could respond, their five-year-old answered, “It means ‘send’.”

[Reader’s Digest]

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Funny how a $100 “looks” so big when you take it to church, but so
small when you take it to the mall.

Funny how long it takes to serve God for an hour, but how quickly a
team plays 60 minutes of basketball.

Funny how long a couple of hours spent at church are, but how short
they are when watching a movie.

Funny how we can’t think of anything to say when we pray, but don’t
have difficulty thinking of things to talk about to a friend.

Funny how we get thrilled when a baseball game goes into extra
innings, but we complain when a sermon is longer than the regular time.

Funny how hard it is to read a chapter in the Bible, but how easy it
is to read 100 pages of a best selling novel.

Funny how people want to get a front seat at any game or concert,
but scramble to get a back seat at church services.

Funny how we need 2 or 3 weeks advance notice to fit a church
event into our schedule, but can adjust our schedule for other events
at the last moment.

Funny how hard it is for people to learn a simple gospel well enough
to tell others, but how simple it is for the same people to understand
and repeat gossip.

Funny how we believe what the newspaper say, but question what the
Bible says.

Funny how everyone wants to go to heaven provided they do not have to
believe, or think, or say, or do anything.

Funny how you can send a thousand ‘jokes’ through e-mail and they
spread like wildfire, but when you start sending messages regarding God,
people think twice about sharing.

FUNNY, ISN’T IT?
Are you laughing?
Are you thinking?
Spread the Word and give thanks to God, for He is good!

[Received from Richard Bachman]

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HUMMMMMM….

– It is hard to understand how a cemetery raised its burial cost and blamed it on the cost of living.

– You can’t have everything, where would you put it?

– The things that come to those that wait may be the things left by those who got there first.

– Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will sit in a boat drinking beer all day.

– Flashlight: A case for holding dead batteries.

– Shin: A device for finding furniture in the dark.

– As long as there are tests, there will be prayer in public schools.

– A fine is a tax for doing wrong. A tax is a fine for doing well.

– I wished the buck stopped here, as I could use a few.

– I started out with nothing, and I still have most of it.

[Clean Humor Digest]

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There was once a young man who, in his youth, professed his desire become a great writer.

When asked to define “great,” he said, “I want to write stuff that the
whole world will read, stuff that people will react to on a truly emotional
level, stuff that will make them scream in disbelief, cry in despair, howl
in pain, and  vent their anger in ways they’ve never dreamed of!”

He now works for Microsoft, writing error messages.

[Forwarded by Mark Rayburn]

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A PERFECT PICTURE

A little girl walked daily to and from her elementary school.  One morning, the weather was questionable and clouds were forming as she made her daily trek.  As the afternoon progressed, the winds whipped up, the thunder roared, and the lightning cut through the sky like a flaming sword.

The mother, concerned the electrical storm could harm her child and thinking her daughter would be frightened as she walked home from school, quickly got into her car. She drove along the route to her child’s school.  As she did so, she saw her little girl walking along, and at each flash of lightning, the child would stop, look, and smile. Other lightning flashes followed quickly. Each time the little girl stopped, looked at the streak of light, and smiled.

Finally, the mother reached the child, and  called out, “What are you doing?”  The child answered, “God just keeps taking pictures of me.”

[Received from Joe Olson]

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MATURE LOVERS

Young love is a flame; very pretty, often very hot and fierce, but still only light and flickering. The love of the older and disciplined heart is as coals, deep burning, unquenchable.

[Henry Ward Beecher]

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How come when my computer catches a virus, I’m the one who misses work?

[Forwarded by Tim Foster]

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REAL LOVE?

If what we call love doesn’t take us beyond ourselves, it is not really love. If we have the idea that love is characterized as cautious, wise, sensible, shrewd, and never taken to extremes, we have missed the true meaning. This may describe affection and it may bring us a warm feeling, but it is not a true and accurate description of love. Have you ever been driven to do something for God not because you felt that it was useful or your duty to do so, or that there was anything in it for you, but simply because you love Him? Have you ever realized that you can give things to God that are of value to Him? Or are you just sitting around daydreaming about the greatness of His redemption, while neglecting all the things you could be doing for Him? I’m not referring to works which could be regarded as divine and miraculous, but ordinary, simple human things — things which would be evidence to God that you are totally surrendered to Him. Have you ever created what Mary of Bethany created in the heart of the Lord Jesus? “She has done a good work for Me.” There are times when it seems as if God watches to see if we will give Him even small gifts of surrender, just to show how genuine our love is for Him.

To be surrendered to God is of more value than our personal holiness. Concern over our personal holiness causes us to focus our eyes on ourselves, and we become overly concerned about the way we walk and talk and look, out of fear of offending God. “. . . but perfect love casts out fear . . .”once we are surrendered to God (1 John 4:18). We should quit asking ourselves, “Am I of any use?” and accept the truth that we really are not of much use to Him. The issue is never of being of use, but of being of value to God Himself. Once we are totally surrendered to God, He will work through us all the time.

[Received from Suzi Wilkinson]

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For Sparky, school was all but impossible.

For Sparky, school was all but impossible. He failed every subject in the eighth grade. He flunked physics in high school, getting a grade of zero. Sparky also flunked Latin, Algebra, and English. He didn’t do much better in sports. Although he did manage to make the school’s golf team, he promptly lost the only important match of the season. There was a consolation match. He lost that one too.

Throughout his youth, Sparky was socially awkward. He was not actually disliked by the other students; no one cared that much. He was astonished if a classmate ever said hello to him outside of school hours.

There’s no way to tell how he might have done with dating. Sparky never once asked a girl to go out with him while he was in high school. He was too afraid of being turned down.

Sparky was a loser. He, his classmates… everyone knew it. So he rolled with it. Sparky had made up his mind early in life that, if things were meant to work out, they would. Otherwise he would content himself with what appeared to be his inevitable mediocrity.

However, one thing was import to Sparky: drawing. He was proud of his artwork.

Of course, no one else appreciated it. In his senior year at high school, he submitted some cartoons to the editors of the yearbook. The cartoons were turned down. Despite this particular rejection, Sparky was so convinced of his ability that he decided to become a professional artist.

After completing high school, he wrote a letter to Walt Disney Studios.
He was told to send some samples of his artwork, and the subject for a cartoon was suggested. Sparky drew the proposed cartoon. He spent a great deal of time on it, and on all the other drawings he submitted. Finally, the reply came from Disney Studios. He had been rejected once again. Another loss for the loser.

So Sparky decided to write his autobiography in cartoons. He described his childhood self: a little boy loser and chronic underachiever. The cartoon character would soon become famous worldwide.

For Sparky, the boy who had such lack of success in school, and whose work was rejected again and again, was Charles Schulz. He created Peanuts, and the cartoon character whose kite would never fly and who never succeeded in kicking a football — Charlie Brown.

Thank You, Charles Schulz. You will be remembered. You will be missed.

[Richard Lee Holbert]

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RESENTMENT

Resentment is when you allow your hurts to turn into hates. When those hates simmer in your heart they create bitterness, and you are the one who suffers. Forget those hurts. When you have a relationship in need of repair, the first key to improvement is to examine your own heart. Look at your own heart–remember who you are and who God called you to be. Did the Father call you to be angry, to be bitter, or did he call you to be loving and forgiving?

An itinerant preacher from Nazareth can do something for the hurt that is in your heart. Maybe you’ve been trying to find God longer than you can remember. There was something about this Nazarene preacher that made people cluster around him like he was God’s gift to humanity. He is your gift as well. Know that resentment and bitterness don’t belong in a Christian’s heart. But sometimes, we hold onto our hurts. Turn them over to your Heavenly Father. Remember that HIS touch can make us stronger at our broken places.

[Max  Lucado]

*****************************
A water bearer in India had two large pots, each hung on each end of a pole which he carried across his neck. One of the pots had a crack in it, and while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water at the end of the long walk from the stream to the master’s house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.

For a full two years this went on daily, with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots full of water in his master’s house. Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments, perfect to the end for which it was made. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it had been made to do.

After two years of what it perceived to be a bitter failure, it spoke to the water bearer one day by the stream. “I am ashamed of myself, and I want to apologize to you.”

“Why?” asked the bearer.  “What are you ashamed of?”

“I have been able, for these past two years, to deliver only half my load because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your master’s house. Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this work, and you don’t get full value from your efforts,” the pot said.

The water bearer felt sorry for the old cracked pot, and in his compassion he said, “As we return to the master’s house, I want you to notice the beautiful flowers along the path.”

Indeed, as they went up the hill, the old cracked pot took notice of the sun warming the beautiful wild flowers on the side of the path, and this cheered it some. But at the end of the trail, it still felt bad because it had leaked out half its load, and so again it apologized to the bearer for its failure.

The bearer said to the pot, “Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of your path, but not on the other pot’s side? That’s because I have always known about your flaw, and I took advantage of it.  I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back from the stream, you’ve watered them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate my master’s table. Without you being just the way you are, he would not have this beauty to grace his house.”

Each of us has our own unique flaws. We are all cracked pots. But if we will allow it, the Lord will use our flaws to grace His Father’s table.
In God’s great economy, nothing goes to waste.

[Received from Cher’re Walters]

*****************************
A SALES SEMINAR…

Private Jones was assigned to the Army Induction Center, where he was to advise new recruits about their government benefits, especially their Serviceman’s Group Life Insurance (SGLI). It wasn’t long before the Center’s Lieutenant noticed that Private Jones had almost a 100% record for insurance sales, which had never happened before. Rather than ask about this, the Lt. stood in the back of the room and listened to Jones’ sales pitch.

Jones explained the basics of the SGLI to the new recruits, and then said. “If you have SGLI and go into battle and are killed, the government has to pay $200,000 to your beneficiaries. If you don’t have SGLI, and you go into battle and get killed, the government has to pay only a maximum of $6000.”

“Now,” he concluded, “which bunch do you think they are going to send into battle first?”

[Jeff and Janette Lilley]

*****************************
YOU ARE MY SUNSHINE

Like any good mother, when Karen found out that another baby was on the way, she did what she could to help her 3-year-old son, Michael, prepare for a new sibling.  They found out that the new baby was going to be a girl, and day after day, night after night, Michael sang to his sister in Mommy’s tummy.  He was building a bond of love with his little sister before he even met her.

The pregnancy progressed normally for Karen. In time, the labor pains came. Soon it was every five minutes, every three…every minute. But serious complications arose during delivery and Karen found herself in hours of labor.  Would a C-section be required?

Finally, after a long struggle, Michael’s little sister was born. But she was in very serious condition.  With a siren howling in the night, the ambulance rushed the infant to the neonatal intensive care unit at St. Mary’s Hospital, Knoxville, Tennessee.

The days inched by. The little girl got worse. The pediatrician had to tell the parents, “There is very little hope. Be prepared for the worst.” Karen and her husband contacted a local cemetery about a burial plot. They had
fixed up a special room in their house for their new baby but now they found themselves having to plan for a funeral. Michael, however, kept begging his parents to let him see his sister.

“I want to sing to her,” he kept saying. Week two in intensive care looked as if a funeral would come before the week was over. Michael kept nagging about singing to his sister, but kids are never allowed in Intensive Care.  Karen made up her mind, though. She would take Michael whether they liked it or not! If he didn’t see his sister right then, he may never see her alive.

She dressed him in an oversized scrub suit and marched him into ICU. He looked like a walking laundry basket. But the head nurse recognized him as a child and bellowed, “Get that kid out of here now! No children are allowed.”  The mother rose up strong in Karen, and the usually mild-mannered lady glared steel-eyed right into the head nurse’s face, her lips a firm line. “He is not leaving until he sings to his sister!”

Karen towed Michael to his sister’s bedside. He gazed at the tiny infant losing the battle to live. After a moment, he began to sing.  In the pure-hearted voice of a 3-year-old, Michael sang: “You are my sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happy when skies are gray—” instantly the baby girl seemed to respond.

The pulse rate began to calm down and become steady. “Keep on singing, Michael,” encouraged Karen with tears in her eyes. “You never know, dear, how much I love you, Please don’t take my sunshine away.”  As Michael sang to his sister, the baby’s ragged, strained breathing became as smooth as a kitten’s purr.

“Keep on singing, sweetheart!!!” “The other night, dear, as I lay sleeping, I dreamed I held you in my arms…” Michael’s little sister began to relax as rest, healing rest, seemed to sweep over her.

“Keep on singing, Michael.” Tears had now conquered the face of the bossy head nurse. Karen glowed. “You are my sunshine, my only Sunshine.  Please don’t, take my sunshine away…” The next, day…the very next day…the little girl was well enough to go home!  Woman’s Day Magazine called it “The Miracle of a Brother’s Song.” The medical staff just called it a miracle. Karen called it a miracle of God’s love!

NEVER GIVE UP ON THE PEOPLE YOU LOVE.
LOVE IS SO INCREDIBLY POWERFUL.

[Received from Bonnie Parkinson]

*****************************
A.S.A.P.

There’s work to do,
deadlines to meet,
you’ve got no time to spare,
but as you hurry and scurry,
always say a prayer.

In the midst of family chaos,
“quality time” is rare.
Do your best: let God do the rest:
ASAP—Always Say A Prayer.

It may seem like your worries
are more than you can bear.
Slow down and take a breather —
ASAP—Always Say A Prayer.

God knows how stressful life is;
He wants to ease our cares,
and He’ll respond A.S.A.P. –
ASAP—ALWAYS SAY A PRAYER

[Keith Todd-Sermon Fodder]

*****************************
The Carpenter

Once upon a time two brothers who lived on adjoining farms fell into conflict. It was the first serious rift in 40 years of farming side by side, sharing machinery, and trading labor and goods as needed without a hitch.  Then the long collaboration fell apart.  It began with a small misunderstanding and it grew into a major difference, and finally it exploded into an exchange of bitter words followed by weeks of silence.

One morning there was a knock on John’s door.  He opened it to find a man with a carpenter’s toolbox.  “I’m looking for a few days work” he said. “Perhaps you would have a few small jobs here and there. Could I help you?”

“Yes,” said the older brother.  “I do have a job for you.  Look across the creek at that farm.  That’s my neighbor, in fact, it’s my younger brother. Last week there was a meadow between us and he took his bulldozer to the river levee and now there is a creek between us.  Well, he may have done this to spite me, but I’ll go him one better.  See that pile of lumber curing by the barn?  I want you to build me a fence–an 8-foot fence–so I won’t need to see his place anymore.  Cool him down, anyhow.”

The carpenter said, “I think I understand the situation. Show me the nails and the post-hole digger and I’ll be able to do a job that pleases you.”

The older brother had to go to town for supplies, so he helped the carpenter get the materials ready and then he was off for the day.  The carpenter worked hard all that day measuring, sawing, nailing.

About sunset when the farmer returned, the carpenter had just finished his job. The farmer’s eyes opened wide, his jaw dropped.

There was no fence there at all. It was a bridge–a bridge stretching from one side of the creek to the other!  A fine piece of work—handrails and all–and the neighbor, his younger brother, was coming across, his hand outstretched.

“You are quite a fellow to build this bridge after all I’ve said and done.”

The two brothers stood at each end of the bridge, and then they met in the middle, taking each other’s hand.  They turned to see the carpenter hoist his toolbox on his shoulder.  “No, wait!  Stay a few days.  I’ve a lot of other projects for you,” said the older brother.

“I’d love to stay on,” the carpenter said, “but, I have many more bridges to build.”

[Keith Todd-Sermon Fodder]

*****************************
To a true artist only that face is beautiful which, quite apart from its exterior, shines with the truth within the soul. There is no beauty apart from Truth.

[Mohandas K. Gandhi]

*****************************
A LESSON FOR ALL OF US….

First grade class in Brooklyn comes in from recess.

Teacher asks Sarah: “What did you do at recess?”  Sarah says, “I played in the sand box.”

Teacher says “That’s good. Go to the blackboard, and if you can write ‘sand’ correctly, I’ll give you a fresh-baked cookie.”

She does and gets a cookie.

Teacher asks Morris what he did at recess.  Morris says, “I played with
Sarah in sand box.”

Teacher says, “Good. If you write ‘Box” correctly on the blackboard,
I’ll give you a fresh baked cookie.”

Morris does, and gets a cookie.

Teacher then asks Mustaffa Abdul Machmoud what he did at recess.  He
says, “I tried to play with Sarah and Morris, but they threw rocks at me.”

Teacher says, “Threw rocks at you? That sounds like blatant racial
discrimination. If you can go the blackboard and write ‘blatant racial discrimination’ I’ll give you a cookie.”

[Received from Rex Roy]

*****************************
The next time the devil comes to remind you about your past, remind him about his future.

[Unknown Author]

I expect to pass through this world but once. Any good therefore that I can do, or any kindness that I can show to any fellow creature, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.

[Unknown Author]

*****************************
The Technically-Challenged

A man was in his front yard mowing his grass when his neighbor came out of the house and rushed straight to the mailbox. She opened it, looked in, then slammed it shut and stormed back into the house.

A little later she came out of her house again, went right to the mailbox and this time opened it, looked in, felt around it, then slammed it shut again. Angrily, back into the house she went.

As the man was getting ready to edge the lawn, she came out again, marched over to the mailbox, opened it, felt all the way to the back, and then slammed it closed harder than ever.

Puzzled by her actions the man asked her, “Is something wrong?”

To which she replied, “There certainly is!”……

“My stupid computer keeps saying, “YOU’VE GOT MAIL.”

*****************************

Lesson from God

I asked God to take away my pain.
God said, No.
It is not for me to take away, but for you to give it up.

I asked God to make my handicapped child whole.
God said, No.
Her spirit was whole, her body was only temporary.

I asked God to grant me patience.
God said, No.
Patience is a by-product of tribulations; it isn’t granted, it is earned.

I asked God to give me happiness.
God said, No.
I give you blessings. Happiness is up to you.

I asked God to spare me pain.
God said, No.
Suffering draws you apart from worldly cares and brings you closer to me.

I asked God to make my spirit grow.
God said, No.
You must grow on your own, but I will prune you to make you fruitful.

I asked for all things that I might enjoy life.
God said, No.
I will give you life so that you may enjoy all things.

I ask God to help me LOVE others, as much as he loves me.

God said… Ahhhh, finally you have the idea.

[Jeff and Janette Lilley]

*****************************
Why is it that when you transport something by car it is a shipment, but when you transport something by ship it’s cargo?

[Jeff and Janette Lilley]

*****************************
BUMPER STICKER ON MARK’ S CAR:

Caution: Stunt driver

*****************************
FLAWS?

In John Steinbeck’s well-known story, ‘The Pearl’, a man finds a beautiful pearl, but after close scrutiny he realizes that it has one tiny flaw. He takes the pearl to a jeweler, hoping that the flaw can be removed and the pearl perfected. His obsession gets the best of him, however.

Layer upon layer of the pearl is peeled away in an attempt to remove the flaw. Finally, nothing is left. What was once of great value is completely lost because of his refusal to accept one tiny flaw.

Our relationships with each other will never be perfect. We all have flaws. Try to accept people as they are. Don’t lose something of great value because you are not willing to accept a small flaw.

Thank God that we can come to him with all our flaws and that he loves and accepts us just as we are.

[Douglas Moore]

*****************************
Know love, know happiness.
No love, no happiness.

To the world you might be one person;
but to one person you might be the world.

[Clean Humor Digest ]

*****************************
The church choir was putting on a car wash to raise money to pay their expenses for a special trip.  They made a large sign, CAR WASH FOR CHOIR TRIP, and on the given Saturday business was very good.  But by two o’clock, the skies clouded and the rain poured and there were hardly any customers.

Finally, one of the girl washers had an idea.  She printed a very large poster which said,

WE WASH ,
(then an arrow pointing skyward)
GOD RINSES.

Business boomed!

[Denise Goodson]

*****************************
Blessing

The man whispered, “God, speak to me.”
And a meadowlark sang.
But the man did not hear.

So the man yelled, “God, speak to me!”
And the thunder rolled across the sky.
But the man did not listen.

The man looked around and said, “God let me see you.”
And a star shined brightly.
But the man did not notice.

And the man shouted, “God show me a miracle!”
And a life was born.
But the man did not know.

So the man cried out in despair, “Touch me God, let me know you are
here!” Whereupon God reached down and touched the man.
But the man brushed the butterfly away and walked on.

Don’t miss out on a blessing because it isn’t packaged the way
that you expect.

[Received from Cher’re Walters]

*****************************
DO GOOD ANYWAY

People are often unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered —
Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives —
Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some
true enemies —
Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you —
Be honest and frank anyway.

What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight –
Build anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous —
Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow —
Do good anyway.

Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough —
Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.

You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and God —
It never was between you and them anyway.

[Jeff and Janette Lilley]

*****************************
CONGRUENCY

The freedom to see and hear what is here
instead of what should be, was, or will be.

The freedom to say what one feels and
thinks, instead of what one should.

The freedom to feel what one feels, instead
of what one ought.

The freedom to ask for what one wants,
instead of always waiting for permission.

The freedom to take risks on one’s own
behalf, instead of choosing to be only secure
and not rocking the boat.

[Virginia Satir]

*****************************
The minister had a special filing drawer for his bills.
It was labeled:

“Due unto others”

*****************************
IF I WERE THE DEVIL

“I would gain control of the most powerful nation in the world; I would  delude their minds into thinking that they had come from man’s effort, instead of God’s blessings;

I would promote an attitude of loving things and using people, instead the other way around; I would dupe entire states into relying on gambling for their state;

I would convince people that character is not an issue when it comes to leadership; I would make it legal to take the life of unborn babies; I would make it socially acceptable to take one’s own life, and invent to make it convenient;

I would cheapen human life as much as possible so that the life of are valued more that human beings; I would take God out of the schools, where even the mention of His name grounds for a law suit.

I would come up  with drugs that sedate the mind and target the young, I would get sports heroes to advertise them; I would get control of the media, so that every night I could pollute the mind of every family member for my agenda; I would attack the family, the backbone of any nation.

I would make divorce acceptable and easy, even fashionable. If the family crumbles, so does the nation; I would compel people to express their most depraved fantasies on canvas movie screens, and I would call it art; I would convince the world that people are born homosexuals, and that their
lifestyles should be accepted and marveled; I would convince the people that right and wrong are determined by a few who call themselves authorities and refer to their agenda as politically correct.

I would persuade people that the church is irrelevant and out of date, and the Bible is for the naive. I would dull the minds of Christians, and make them believe that prayer is not important, and that faithfulness and obedience are optional. I guess I would leave things pretty much the way they are.”

[by Paul Harvey] – [From Bill & Jo’s Humor & Inspiration]

*****************************
Years ago, in 1860 to be precise, a huge crowd were watching the famous tightrope walker, Blondin, cross Niagara Falls. He had crossed the 1,000 chasm (160 feet above the raging waters) many times. On this particular day he asked the crowd if they believed he could carry one person across on the tightrope. All believed that he could. So Blondin approached one man and asked him to get on his back. The man chickened out and wouldn’t do it.”

Frankly I don’t blame him. I wouldn’t have gotten on his back either. No way. Which means that while I probably would have said, “Yes, I believe you could carry someone across the falls,” in my heart I wouldn’t have believed it. Without commitment, to what I say I believe, isn’t really a belief at all. It may be a want, a wish, a dream, a hope, a desire, or a profession, but it isn’t a belief.

This reminds me of one of my favorite quotes which is from a Buddhist monk who said, “To know and not to do is not yet to know!” In other words, “To believe and not to act is not yet to believe because I only truly believe that which motivates me to action!” Thus, the Buddhist monk is right.

“To know and not to do is not yet to know!”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the German pastor who was martyred in a Nazi concentration camp said the same thing: “Only he who believes is obedient; only he who is obedient believes.”

It’s the same with love. “Love is as love does, not as it says.”

Also, it’s not enough to say that I believe in God, that I believe that Jesus died on the cross to pay for my sins, that God has the gift of forgiveness and eternal life for me. . .I need to act on this belief and sincerely confess my sins and sinfulness to God, ask for his forgiveness and invite Jesus to come into my heart and life as personal Lord and Savior.

[Dick Innes]

*****************************
Jumping to conclusions is not half as good an exercise as digging for facts.

[Net153]

*****************************
TEA FOR TWO

Mr. Meant To has a comrade,
And his name is Didn’t Do;
Have you ever chanced to meet them?
Did they ever call on you?
These two fellows live together
In the house of Never Win;
And I’m told that it is haunted
By the ghost of Might Have Been.

*****************************
A preacher was called upon to substitute for the regular minister, who had failed to reach the church because he was delayed in a snowstorm. The speaker began by explaining the meaning of substitute.

“If you break a window,” he said, ”and then place cardboard there instead, that is a substitute.”

After the sermon, a woman who had listened intently shook hands with him and wishing to compliment him actually said, “You were no substitute…. You were a real pane!

*****************************
A panda walks into a restaurant, sits down, and orders a sandwich. He eats the sandwich, pulls out a gun and shoots the waitress in the foot.  As the panda stands up to leave, the manager shouts, “Hey! You just shot my waitress, and you didn’t pay for your sandwich! Just who do you think you are?”

The panda yells back at the manager, “Hey man, I’m a Panda! That’s what I do.”

The manager says, “Huh?”

So the panda yells back, “Look it up.”

The manager rushes to his dictionary…”pan’da  n. (ailuropada melanoleuca)  A rare, mountain dwelling mammal of China and Tibet,
characterized by distinct black and white coloring. Eats shoots and leaves.”

*****************************
It’s the constant and determined effort that breaks down all resistance and sweeps away all obstacles.

[Claude M Bristol]

*****************************
HUMBLED

A young seminary graduate came up to the lectern, very self confident and immaculately dressed. He began to deliver his first sermon in his first church and the words simply would not come out. Finally he burst into tears and ended up leaving the platform obviously humbled.

There were 2 older ladies sitting in the front row and one remarked to the other, “If he’d come in like he went out, he would have gone out like he came in.”

*****************************
Religion leaves a million questions unanswered and apparently unanswerable.  Its purpose and object is not to make a man certain and cocksure about everything but to make him certain about those things of which he must be certain if he is to live a human life at all. Religion does not relieve us from the duty of thought; it makes it possible for a man to begin thinking. It does not put an end to research and enquiry, it gives a basis from which real research is made possible and fruitful of results; a basis without which thinking only means wandering round in circles, and getting nowhere in the end, and research means battering at a brass door that bruises our knuckles, and does not yield by the millionth part of an inch.

[G. A. Studdert Kennedy]

*****************************
I ASKED

I asked for Strength
And was given Difficulties to make me strong.

I asked for Wisdom
And was given Problems to solve.

I asked for Prosperity
And was given a Brain and Brawn to work.

I asked for Courage
And was given Danger to overcome.

I asked for Love
And was given Troubled people to help.

I asked for Favors
And was given Opportunities.

I received nothing I wanted.
I received everything I needed.

Think back over your own life. Wasn’t it true of everything that happened to you so far, whether you are in your 20s, 30s, 40s … or 60s or 70s?

Isn’t God Awesome?

[Author unknown]

*****************************
God is a little like General Electric
He lights your path.

God is a little like Bayer Aspirin
He works wonders.

God is a little like Hallmark Cards
He cared enough to send the very best.

God is a little like Tide
He gets out the stains that others leave behind.

God is a little like VO-5 Hair Spray
He holds through all kinds of weather.

God is a little like Dial Soap
Aren’t you glad you know Him?
Don’t you wish everyone did?

God is a little like Sears
He has everything.

God is a little like Alka Seltzer
Oh, what a relief He is!

God is a little like Scotch Tape
You can’t see Him but you know He’s there!

God is a little like The Copper Top Battery;
Nothing can outlast him.

God is a little like American Express
Don’t leave home without Him!

[Received from Heather]

*****************************
Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.
[Net153]

*****************************
When the Day is Dark

When the day is dark and gloomy
And the fog obscures your view,
And you feel there is no challenge
Waiting anywhere for you;

When it’s routine you must follow
Through a dreary weather chart,
And you feel the hand of duty
Like a millstone on your heart;

Face the skies however darkened,
When you ache to turn away
Do the joy that lies before you,
Keep your courage one more day.

You can never guess how often
You affect another’s life
By the fact you are a doer
Not a quitter in the strife.

[Unknown Author]

*****************************
Quotes From Famous Mothers

PAUL REVERE’S MOTHER: “I don’t care where you think you have to go, young man. Midnight is past your curfew!”

MARY, MARY, QUITE CONTRARY’S MOTHER: “I don’t mind you having a garden, Mary, but does it have to be growing under your bed?”

MONA LISA’S MOTHER: “After all that money your father and I spent on braces, Mona, that’s the biggest smile you can give us?”

HUMPTY DUMPTY’S MOTHER: “Humpty, If I’ve told you once, I’ve told you a hundred times not to sit on that wall. But would you listen to me? Noooo!”

COLUMBUS’ MOTHER: “I don’t care what you’ve discovered, Christopher. You still could have written!”

BABE RUTH’S MOTHER: “Babe, how many times have I told you — quit playing ball in the house! That’s the third broken window this week!”

MICHELANGELO’S MOTHER: “Mike, can’t you paint on walls like other children? Do you have any idea how hard it is to get that stuff off the ceiling?”

NAPOLEON’S MOTHER: “All right, Napoleon. If you aren’t hiding your report card inside your jacket, then take your hand out of there and prove it!”

CUSTER’S MOTHER: “Now, George, remember what I told you — don’t go biting off more than you can chew!”

ABRAHAM LINCOLN’S MOTHER: “Again with the stovepipe hat, Abe? Can’t you just wear a baseball cap like the other kids?”

BARNEY’S MOTHER: “I realize strained plums are your favorite, Barney, but you’re starting to look a little purple.”

MARY’S MOTHER: “I’m not upset that your lamb followed you to school, Mary, but I would like to know how he got a better grade than you.”

BATMAN’S MOTHER: “It’s a nice car, Bruce, but do you realize how much the insurance is going to be?”

GOLDILOCKS’ MOTHER: “I’ve got a bill here for a busted chair from the Bear family. You know anything about this, Goldie?”

LITTLE MISS MUFFET’S MOTHER: “Well, all I’ve got to say is if you don’t get off your tuffet and start cleaning your room, there’ll be a lot more spiders
around here!”

ALBERT EINSTEIN’S MOTHER: “But, Albert, it’s your senior picture. Can’t you do something about your hair? Styling gel, mousse, something…?”

GEORGE WASHINGTON’S MOTHER: “The next time I catch you throwing money across the Potomac, you can kiss your allowance good-bye!”

JONAH’S MOTHER: “That’s a nice story, but now tell me where you’ve really been for the last three days.”

SUPERMAN’S MOTHER: “Clark, your father and I have discussed it, and we’ve decided you can have your own telephone line. Now will you quit spending
so much time in all those phone booths?”

THOMAS EDISON’S MOTHER: “Of course I’m proud that you invented the electric light bulb, Thomas. Now turn off that light and get to bed!”

[Received from Richard Bachman]

*****************************
So, you think a gallon of gasoline is expensive? Well, here’s a few things that Autoweek brought to the public’s attention to compare.

This is what  it costs to buy a gallon of…..

Diet Snapple – 16oz for  $1.29 = $10.32 a gallon
Lipton Iced Tea – 16 oz for $1.19 = $9.52 a gallon
Gatorade – 20 oz for $1.59 = $10.17 a gallon
Ocean  Spray – 16 oz for $1.25 = $10.00 a gallon
STP brake fluid – 12 oz for  $3.15 = $33.60 a gallon
Vick’s Nyquil – 6 oz for $8.35 = $178.13 a gallon
White Out – .7 oz for $1.39 = $254.17 a gallon
Scope – 1.5 oz for $0.99 = $84.84 a gallon

and this is the  real kicker……..

Evian water – 9 oz for $1.49 = $21.19 a gallon……..
$21.19!!!!

FOR WATER!!!!!!!!!

So next time  you’re at the pump, be glad your car doesn’t run on
White Out!!!

[Received from Richard Bachman]

*****************************
George Carlinisms:

– How come wrong numbers are never busy?
– Do people in Australia call the rest of the world “up over”?
– Does that screwdriver belong to Phillip?
– Does killing time damage eternity?
– Why doesn’t Tarzan have a beard?
– Why is it called lipstick if you can still move your lips?
– Why is it that night falls but day breaks?
– Why is the third hand on the watch called a second hand?
– Why is it that when you’re driving and looking for an address, you turn down the volume on the radio?
– Why is lemon juice made with artificial flavor, and dishwashing
liquid made with real lemons?
– Are part-time band leaders semiconductors?
– Can you buy an entire chess set in a pawnshop?
– Daylight savings time – why are they saving it and where do they keep it?
– Do pilots take crash-courses?
– Do you think that when they asked George Washington for ID that he just whipped out a quarter?
– Have you ever seen a toad on a toadstool?
– How can there be self-help “groups”?
– How do you get off a nonstop flight?
– How do you write zero in Roman numerals?
– How many weeks are there in a light year?
– If a jogger runs at the speed of sound, can he still hear his Walkman?
– If athletes get athlete’s foot, do astronauts get mistletoe?
– If Barbie’s so popular, why do you have to buy all her friends?
– If swimming is good for your shape, then why do the whales look the way they do?
– If tin whistles are made out of tin, what do they make fog horns out of?
– If white wine goes with fish, do white grapes go with sushi?
– If you can’t drink and drive, why do bars have parking lots?
– Why do the signs that say “Slow Children” have a picture of a running child?
– Why do they call it “chili” if it’s hot?
– Why do we sing “Take me out to the ball game,” when we are already there?
– Why is the time of day with the slowest traffic called rush hour?

[Received from Richard Bachman]

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A university creative writing class was asked to write a concise essay containing these four elements, using them in the order noted:

– religion

– royalty

– sex

– mystery

The prize winner wrote the following:

“My God,” said the Queen.  “I’m pregnant.  I wonder who did it?

[Received from Richard Bachman]

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Death is a fact of life. The day we are born the seeds of our death are already present in our genes. We live. Then we die. We all know that, but why is it that most of us spend years preparing for life and do little, if anything, about preparing for death?

I recently read the following quote on the front of a highly acclaimed newsletter. It read: “This life is a test. It is only a test. If it had been an actual life, you would have received further instructions on where to go and what to do.”

The fact is, we have been given further instructions about where to go and what to do. And, according to the instruction manual, this life is not a test. This is it. The manual makes it clear that we will all die once, and after that face judgment.

It also says that “many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.” It’s all in the Bible, God’s instruction manual for mankind.

The tragedy about life, therefore, is not that we die but that too many die without having prepared for the life to come. But we don’t have to. We can be prepared because we do have a choice of where to go, but the choice needs to be made now. It is too late after we die. As in this life, it is choice, not chance, that determines our destiny. And the reason we have a choice is because Jesus Christ made that possible through his death on the cross.

Seneca, the ancient Roman philosopher said, “We are all sinners. Some more. Some less.” But sinners we all are and it is our sin that has separated us from a holy God. The result of sin is eternal separation from God or what the Bible calls, eternal death. But because God so loved us, he gave his only Son to die on the cross for each of us–so we could receive a full pardon and the gift of eternal life and thereby be rescued from everlasting death.

Thus the day that Christ rose from the grave was the one day that changed the world forever.

Had Jesus Christ not died for us, mankind would have been lost and doomed to eternal, everlasting separation from God. But because he did die, mankind now has the offer and choice of eternal life. Thus the day that Christ rose from the grave was the one day that changed the world forever.

I recently heard about a father who was caught with his two young daughters in a snow storm and lost his way. When night fell he wrapped his jacket around his two girls and lay on top of them to stop them from freezing to death. The next day they were found by a search party. The two girls were alive and well, but the father had frozen to death. He gave his life to save the ones he loved.

That is exactly what Jesus Christ has done for you and me. He died so we could live. If you have never accepted his pardon, asked for God’s forgiveness, and received his gift of eternal life, you can do that right now by praying a simple prayer to God, admitting that you have sinned, thanking Jesus for dying in your place on the cross, asking for and accepting his free pardon and the gift of eternal life, and committing your life to him.

Indeed, the day Christ rose from the dead was the day that changed the world forever. The day you commit your life to Jesus Christ and receive his free pardon is the day that will change your life. Forever.

[Dick Innes]

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Hope you enjoyed some of these insights—share them with your friends and colleagues—so we can have a larger ‘pool’ to receive from, and more to share with!

Also, remember to include your name as the “source,” if some of this wisdom is of your doing—I would like to give credit where credit is due!

PRAYER:
May today there be peace within you. May you trust God that you are exactly where you are meant to be. May you not forget the infinite
possibilities that are born of faith. May you use those gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you. May you be content knowing that you are a child of God. Let His presence settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, and to bask in the sun. It is there for each and every one of you.

Mark

*****************************
Disclaimer: All the above jokes & inspirations are obtained from various sources and copyright are used when known. Other than our name and headers, we do not own the copyright to any of the materials sent to this list. We just want to spread the ministry of God’s love and cheerfulness throughout the world.

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