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Thursday, 7 April 2011
Counting the Cost
Luke 14:27 GW So those who do not carry their crosses and follow me
cannot be my disciples.

How often do we know of those who, when hard times or tragedy stricks,
turn away from God? Especially in America, we've made Christianity a
"now everything will be great" religion. Those who "believe" actually
believe not in the Christ who promised hard times and difficulties,
nut in a false God of perfect prosperity and no problems. It comes
from not really getting to know Christ through mutual communication
and regular--and thorough--study of His Word. It comes
from relying on human words rather than God's, allowing us to create
our own and totally ineffective religion.

Jesus doesn't promise an easy life. He promises that if we give our
lives totally to Him, satan will do everything possible to hurt and
mess up our lives and relationships. What Jesus does promise is His
guidance, comfort, strength, peace and hope--no matter what.

What Jesus asks is for us to count the cost of descipleship. Have I?


--
CAROLYN R. SCHEIDIES
History, Mystery, Romance...and Hope!
I DEAL IN HOPE
http://IDealinHope.com
***
AUTHOR'S CHOICE REVIEWS
http://IDealinHope.com/bookreviews


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:32 PM CDT
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Heart of Caring
Deuteronomy 26:12 GW Every third year is the year when you will store
a tenth of that year's crops in your houses. During that year
distribute what you have stored to the Levites, foreigners, orphans,
and widows in your cities, and they may eat all they want.

Many of us know at least a tenth of what we earn goes to the Lord's
work. What I've never seen before is the clarity of where such a tenth
should go. God is a God who cares about those in need. As individuals
and churches, we need to make sure to donate generously to those in
real need. We don't need a new tool box or a new jacket as much as
someone else needs unpoluted water, food and clothes.

Generosity should be one of the marks of a Christ-follower.


--
CAROLYN R. SCHEIDIES
History, Mystery, Romance...and Hope!
I DEAL IN HOPE
http://IDealinHope.com
***
AUTHOR'S CHOICE REVIEWS
http://IDealinHope.com/bookreviews


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:31 PM CDT
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Ultimate Good
Psalm 31:24 HW Be strong, all who wait with hope for the LORD, and let
your heart be courageous.

Sometimes the day just goes bad. Frustrating things happen, bad news
received, stress increases. These are times to first pray, not just
shallow prayers, but sharing the anguish of heart and mind with the
One who not only loves you best, but the One who can actually do
someone about the situation. Second, read God's Word for comfort,
strength and direction. Third, thank God and begin to count your
blessings--even small minor ones.

God takes our prayers and praise and turns things around for our ultimate good.


--
CAROLYN R. SCHEIDIES
History, Mystery, Romance...and Hope!
I DEAL IN HOPE
http://IDealinHope.com
***
AUTHOR'S CHOICE REVIEWS
http://IDealinHope.com/bookreviews


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:31 PM CDT
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Seeking Good Always
Luke 22:51 GW But Jesus said, "Stop! That's enough of this." Then he
touched the servant's ear and healed him.

Even during one of His worst moments--after His agonized prayer in the
garden and as He was being arrested--Jesus focused not on Himself, but
on others. Even in that moment He did good rather than evil to an
enemy. He healed. No anger. No revenge. His trust in His Father gave
Him confidence in His purpose--sacrificing Himself for you and me.

Do we come to our trials with a quiet confidence in Him--always
seeking good and not evil? Easy to claim. Not easy to do.

Do I trust God, no matter what? Without dwelling on the hurt, pain--or revenge?


--
CAROLYN R. SCHEIDIES
History, Mystery, Romance...and Hope!
I DEAL IN HOPE
http://IDealinHope.com
***
AUTHOR'S CHOICE REVIEWS
http://IDealinHope.com/bookreviews


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:31 PM CDT
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False god?
Deuteronomy 18:10-12 GW You must never sacrifice your sons or
daughters by burning them alive, practice black magic, be a
fortuneteller, witch, or sorcerer, cast spells, ask ghosts or spirits
for help, or consult the dead. Whoever does these things is disgusting
to the LORD. ...

We read this passage and then check out the movies we see like the
Twight series, shows we watch and books we read. We've lost the
pureness of our faith before Almighty God. Do we really believe God
hates sin to the point of allowing negative consequences into our
lives or do we rationalize God doesn't mean what He says in scripture
and will wink at our entertainment choices.

Only God can save, help and comfort. In a crisis, god-like recreations
will crmble and fade. Is your god the God of the Bible or have you
recreated God in a comfortable--but false--idol image to fit your
lifestyle?



--
CAROLYN R. SCHEIDIES
History, Mystery, Romance...and Hope!
I DEAL IN HOPE
http://IDealinHope.com
***
AUTHOR'S CHOICE REVIEWS
http://IDealinHope.com/bookreviews


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:30 PM CDT
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Reason for the Cross
Psalm 70:4 GW Let all who seek you rejoice and be glad because of you.
Let those who love your salvation continually say, "God is great!"

We are lost. We are not intrinsically good. Without Christ we are
forever lost. If not, if we can somehow earn our way to grace, then 1)
Christianity isn't much different from other religions all of which
focus on humans reaching out to God, 2) Jesus died for no reason. If
we can earn our own way, Jesus didn't need to die. Changes everything
He claimed!

But we are lost and Jesus sacrificed Himself to change that situation
and provide another way to life--through His sacrifice for us.

Luke 19:10 GW Indeed, the Son of Man has come to seek and to save
people who are lost.

My part? Accept that sacrifice, admit my need and follow Him.


--
CAROLYN R. SCHEIDIES
History, Mystery, Romance...and Hope!
I DEAL IN HOPE
http://IDealinHope.com
***
AUTHOR'S CHOICE REVIEWS
http://IDealinHope.com/bookreviews


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:30 PM CDT
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The Worrier
Luke 12:25-27 GW Can any of you add an hour to your life by worrying?
If you can't do a small thing like that, why worry about other things?
Consider how the flowers grow. They never work or spin yarn for
clothes. But I say that not even Solomon in all his majesty was
dressed like one of these flowers.

Worry adds nothing to our lives, but does take away. Worry depletes
our energy and resources, leaving us exhausted and anxious. Worry
steals enjoyment of the present, making us always looking for bad
things to happen. Worry causes health problems and short-circuits our
peace. The foundation of worry is self-centered. It is deciding God
isn't trustworthy and that it is all up to us. No wonder we worry!

Worry is not concern. It is not recognizing problems and dealing with
them. Worry is that nebulous cycle of doom we think ourselves into and
that may explode into inappropriate words or behavior.

Where is trust in the equation? To let go of worry, we need to
consider Christ, who He is and His character. Is He more trustworthy
that me who has very little control of much of life? Something to
ponder.


--
CAROLYN R. SCHEIDIES
History, Mystery, Romance...and Hope!
I DEAL IN HOPE
http://IDealinHope.com
***
AUTHOR'S CHOICE REVIEWS
http://IDealinHope.com/bookreviews


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:30 PM CDT
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Waiting for us to ask
Psalm 91:14-15 Mkjv Because He has set His love on Me, therefore I
will deliver him; I will set Him on high, because He has known My
name. He shall call on Me, and I will answer Him; I will be with Him
in trouble; I will deliver Him, and honor Him.

God is here. He cares and when we ask Him for help, He becomes our
protector, provider and our peace.


--
CAROLYN R. SCHEIDIES
History, Mystery, Romance...and Hope!
I DEAL IN HOPE
http://IDealinHope.com
***
AUTHOR'S CHOICE REVIEWS
http://IDealinHope.com/bookreviews


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:30 PM CDT
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God First in Finances
Proverbs 3:9-10 Mkjv Honor the LORD with your substance, and with the
firstfruits of all your increase; and your barns shall be filled with
plenty, and your presses shall burst with new wine.

We spend money on food, clothes and housing. We spend money, copious
amounts of money, on entertainment and other luxuries. God promises
blessing to those who put Him at the center of their lives and that
means considering Him first in our finances. Yet how often do we give
to God the left-overs of our time and money and still expect Him to
bless?

We receive as we give. If God is number one, giving to Him that first
ten percent isn't a suggestion, it should be our priority--even when
we're concerned about finances. God first, in time, worship and
finances takes the pressure off of me and puts it on Him. Do I trust
God enought to give to Him before paying my other bills?


--
CAROLYN R. SCHEIDIES
History, Mystery, Romance...and Hope!
I DEAL IN HOPE
http://IDealinHope.com
***
AUTHOR'S CHOICE REVIEWS
http://IDealinHope.com/bookreviews


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:30 PM CDT
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Only in the Good Times?
Psalm 69:3,16 GW I am exhausted from crying for help. My throat is
hoarse. My eyes are strained from looking for my God. ...Answer me, O
LORD, because your mercy is good. Out of your unlimited compassion,
turn to me. ...

Psalms is not all about comfort and hope. It is a book of raw and real
emotions and pain. God doesn't want us putting on some Christian
"front." He never promised a life of ease and roses.

He said life would be hard, that we wouldn't always understand, that
our hearts might get broken and there would Be times of tears.

Not much to our commitment to Him if we bail every time things get
hard. Those are the very times He wants to offer guidance and hope if
we but acknowledge our pain and come to Him for help.

It is ok to cry, hurt and grieve as we turn to Him.


--
CAROLYN R. SCHEIDIES
History, Mystery, Romance...and Hope!
I DEAL IN HOPE
http://IDealinHope.com
***
AUTHOR'S CHOICE REVIEWS
http://IDealinHope.com/bookreviews


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:30 PM CDT
Post Comment | Permalink
Environmentalism & God
Deuteronomy 20:19-20 GW This is what you must do whenever you blockade
a city for a long time in order to capture it in war. Don't harm any
of its fruit trees with an ax. You can eat the fruit. Never cut those
trees down, because the trees of the field are not people you have
come to blockade.
You may destroy trees that you know are not fruit trees. You may cut
them down and use them in your blockade until you capture the city.

I care about the earth, though I don't buy into environmental
extremism. Still, God wants us to take care of the world He created. I
found it interesting that God did not want His people to use a
scorched earth policy when they were at war. He told them not to
destroy fruit trees.

That was possible because the ultimate victory didn't come from
military tactics, but from obeying, serving and following God.

In many ways, environmentalism has gotten out of hand and many worship
nature rather than God. Others have taken over a movement meant for
good to promote government control.

We need to respect God's creation, but never worship the creation more
than the creator and never use environmentalism to take away God-given
freedom. It is a balance that starts with putting God first in every
area of life and letting Him direct the rest.


--
CAROLYN R. SCHEIDIES
History, Mystery, Romance...and Hope!
I DEAL IN HOPE
http://IDealinHope.com
***
AUTHOR'S CHOICE REVIEWS
http://IDealinHope.com/bookreviews


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:30 PM CDT
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Trust
Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding;
In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.
--Proverbs 3:5-6 (NKJV)


I trust in God's
Unfolding plan,
As I tightly cling
To His loving, guiding hand.


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:29 PM CDT
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Hope
Psalm 71:5 GW You are my hope, O Almighty LORD. You have been my
confidence ever since I was young.

It is all about hope. Hope keeps us hanging on long after we should
have given up. Hope keeps us going when others tell us to quit. Hope
helps us perservere through the hardships to the other side. Hope not
only walks beside us, but pulls us forward with "hope" of something
better on the other side.

Without God, we do not have hope for He is the One who put hope into
our hearts.


--
CAROLYN R. SCHEIDIES
History, Mystery, Romance...and Hope!
I DEAL IN HOPE
http://IDealinHope.com
***
AUTHOR'S CHOICE REVIEWS
http://IDealinHope.com/bookreviews


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:28 PM CDT
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Hand Up?
John 12:9-11 GW A large crowd of Jews found out that Jesus was in
Bethany. So they went there not only to see Jesus but also to see
Lazarus, whom Jesus had brought back to life.
The chief priests planned to kill Lazarus too. Lazarus was the
reason why many people were leaving the Jews and believing in Jesus.

A man is resurrected and the leaders are so angry at there loss of
power and influence they will do anything to rid themselves of anyone
who stands in way of their domination and manipulation of the
people--even murder.

Their attitude shows clearly, despite their rhetoric of concern for
the people, their real concern was only for control.

Those who truly follow Jesus care for His people--not just with words
while doing things to undermine the independence, freedom and
livelihood of those people, but with actions that don't just hand-out
making for an unhealthy dependent relationship, but with an open,
caring hand up.

Do I give hand outs or a hand up?


remote Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 3:28 PM CDT
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Saturday, 12 March 2011
Tech test
This is the test we put up.

Posted by Carolyn R Scheidies at 2:45 PM CST
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