This is the Tussing Elementary 3rd grade class singing a sincere thank you to our brave and strong soldiers, men and women, past and current, for protecting us in times of war and peace. THANK YOU!
Not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord. Romans 12:11
Last summer, the mayor of the Italian town of Boscotre case had to close down city hall because 23 of his staff were arrested for absenteeism. Staff members learned to scam the system by swiping one another’s passes when clocking into their jobs. Thirty people were involved in the scheme, and among those arrested was the head of the local traffic police.
We’re living in a world where people cut corners whenever they can. After a while, scamming the system becomes a way of life. That doesn’t work on the spiritual level. There aren’t any shortcuts to spiritual growth. The Bible uses the word “diligent” to describe how we should go about our Christian lives. According to Hebrews 11:6, God rewards those who diligently seek Him. Peter told us to be diligent to make our call and election sure. “Be diligent,” he wrote, “to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless” (2 Peter 1:10 and 3:14).
As Christians we need to take responsibility for our walk with God, seeking to be more like Him, sharing our faith and serving others. Don’t try to scam the system. Be diligent to serve the Savior.
I could never have done what I have done without the habits of punctuality, order, and diligence. Charles Dickens
When you receive exciting news, what’s the first thing you do? If you’re like most people, you probably tell someone who will share your joy. The apostle Paul told others about salvation for a similar reason.
God saved Paul on the road to Damascus, and the apostle dedicated the rest of his life to spreading the good news of the gospel. He gave his time, his energy, and ultimately, his life because he was committed to telling people about Jesus.
Why would he do this? Paul felt a deep obligation. First, he was indebted to Jesus for salvation. But his motivation came from more than just his love for and devotion to the Lord. He also felt compelled to offer hope to a world that was in desperate need (1 Tim. 1:15-16).
And the message he gave them was this: God sent His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, into the world in human form. Through His death on the cross, Jesus paid mankind’s sin debt in full. All who receive Him as their personal Savior will be forgiven.
Paul realized he needed to bring the gospel to the Greeks as well as to the non-Greeks. In other words, he had to tell everyone. Some would accept the truth, while others would reject it. The apostle himself could not save people—he wasn’t responsible for their reaction. His task was simply to tell about Jesus.
Do you feel the same indebtedness that Paul felt? Pray that God would give you courage and wisdom to share the gospel with others.
“And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.” (Isaiah 2:4)
It has been over 90 years since “The War to End All Wars” ended in victory for those who had “fought to make the world safe for democracy.” A celebration of thanksgiving followed, and a holiday was established to commemorate that great Armistice Day (now Veterans Day).
However, an even greater war soon followed, only to be repeated by innumerable local wars and revolutions. Instead of a world of liberty and democracy, many of the world’s nations are now under the brutal heel of totalitarian dictatorships. With the threat of potential nuclear obliteration hanging over the world, the prophecy of Christ is being literally fulfilled: “Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth” (Luke 21:26).
In the 25 centuries since our text was first uttered, there has been a war going on somewhere in the world at least 11 out of every 12 years, and it certainly seems unlikely that such a promise will ever be fulfilled.
Yet it is God who has promised, and only He can accomplish it. “He shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people” (our text for today). “Of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end, . . . The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this” (Isaiah 9:7). When the Lord Jesus Christ comes again, “He shall speak peace unto the (nations): and His dominion shall be from sea even to sea, and from the river even to the ends of the earth” (Zechariah 9:10). Finally, world peace will come, and Christ “shall reign for ever and ever” (Revelation 11:15). HMM
But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.
Well, we have great churches and we have beautiful sanctuaries and we join in the chorus, “We have need of nothing.” But there is every indication that we are in need of worshipers.
We have a lot of men willing to sit on our church boards who have no desire for spiritual joy and radiance and who never show up for the church prayer meeting. These are the men who often make the decisions about the church budget and the church expenses and where the frills will go in the new edifice….
It seems to me that it has always been a frightful incongruity that men who do not pray and do not worship are nevertheless actually running many of the churches and ultimately determining the direction they will take.
It hits very close to our own situations, perhaps, but we should confess that in many “good” churches, we let the women do the praying and let the men do the voting.
Because we are not truly worshipers, we spend a lot of time in the churches just spinning wheels, burning the gasoline, making a noise but not getting anywhere.
Lord, give us men who are willing to lead in the Church, in prayer and in true worship, of which You are so deserving. Amen.
Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all
things. (Revelation 4:11)
We make a mistake if we do not learn to admire God in all things, great and small; for a new rich mine would be opened in our consciousness if we could learn to recognize God in nature as well as in grace!
We do acknowledge that the God of nature is also the God of grace; and it is true that we glorify God’s redeeming grace no less when we glorify His creating and sustaining power. When Christ came to redeem us, He stepped into the framework of an already existent nature.
If we will obey and believe, we can go on pushing back the narrow borders of our spiritual world until it takes in the whole creation of God!
At one time, the English merchant and renowned poet, William Blake, stood watching the sun come up out of the sea. The bright yellow disk of the sun emerged, gliding the water and painting the sky with a thousand colors. “Ah! I see gold!” the merchant said.
Blake answered, “I see the glory of God! And I hear a multitude of the heavenly host crying, The whole earth is full of His glory.'”
“The bow shall be seen in the cloud.”—Genesis ix. 14.
When may we expect to see the token of the covenant? The rainbow is only to be seen painted upon a cloud. Beloved, our God, who is as the sun to us, always shines, but we do not always see Him—clouds hide His face; but no matter what drops may be falling, or what clouds may be threatening, if He does but shine, there will be a rainbow at once. It is said that when we see the rainbow the shower is over. Certain it is, that when Christ comes our troubles remove, when we behold Jesus our sins vanish, and our debts and fears subside. When Jesus walks the waters of the sea. how profound the calm!