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Showing posts from August, 2009

Day Thirty-One – The Love Dare: One Wife’s Journey

Back in October 2008... The scripture verse that touched me in particular today is – A man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh. Genesis 2:24 Love and marriage… Leave and cleave. I never had an issue with the “leave” part…and “cleave” was easy when we were younger and I really wanted to be with my husband. Now, I’m so used to being by myself because he works at night and sleeps in the day, that cleaving just doesn’t feel natural. Lord, please help me to recapture the desire I had so many years ago. Inject a freshness into our marriage. Draw us near to You and each other in Christ’s majestic name. Amen. That was then, this is now… A man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh. Genesis 2:24 It grows increasingly difficult for young people starting out in marriage. Sometimes expenses make it impossible to leave father and mother and set out on your own. I am so

Prayer Power by Peter Lundell - PLUS A CONTEST!

ABOUT THE BOOK In the crazy world around us, our prayers may too often seem ineffective. Do you want to connect with God when you pray and receive more direct answers? PRAYER POWER is the tool you need to build a more powerful and dynamic life of prayer. Intensely practical and straightforward, PRAYER POWER helps you improve on thirty essential facets of prayer such as passion, routine, fasting, praying with others, listening to God, handling distractions, and spiritual warfare. In each brief chapter you'll be inspired by stories of people whose lives of prayer give us powerful examples. PRAYER POWER can be used as a month-long devotional, a prayer guide, or a reference for help in specific areas. Whether you're a new believer or think you've heard it all, this book's refreshing and honest insight will guide you to a deeper connection with God. ABOUT THE AUTHOR Peter Lundell, a former missionary to Japan, is a pastor at Walnut Blessing Church in Walnut, Califor

When God Writes Your Love Story by Eric and Leslie Ludy

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book! You never know when I might play a wild card on you! Today's Wild Card authors are: Eric and Leslie Ludy and the book: When God Writes Your Love Story Multnomah Books (June 2, 2009) ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Eric and Leslie Ludy are the best-selling authors of more than a dozen books – known for tackling some of the toughest issues of our day. The Ludy’s unique “insider perspective” on the sexual and spiritual climate of contemporary culture has given them a powerful platform with audiences around the world. Eric and Leslie

Day Thirty – The Love Dare: One Wife’s Journey

Back in October 2008... The scripture verse that touched me in particular today is – Father, keep them in Your name, the name which You have given Me, that they may be one even as We are. John 17:11 Love brings unity… WOW! The chapter title is “Love Brings Unity”. That’s what I was just talking about, really. My showing concern would lead to greater unity in the body of Christ. You may notice that each of these devotions builds upon the previous concept. That was then, this is now... Father, keep them in Your name, the name which You have given Me, that they may be one even as We are. John 17:11 True love leads to unity. Because true love unites us in Christ, it leads to oneness of purpose. Love that is centered in Christ has the same goals from person to person because the Holy Spirit indwells us and points us in the same direction. The Lord will not contradict Himself by putting us in conflict with each other. My husband and I are not always unified in purpose. Sometimes o

Bacon Sandwiches & Salvation by Adrian Plass

With the comfortable knowledge of a church insider and the leery insight of a seeker, Plass shines a sometimes sarcastic, often times profound, and all the time witty light on the Christian experience. With thoughts on everything from the afterlife (“a place where God will chew a straw and fill us in on how things really are.”) to Zacchaeus (“… [he] looked like Danny DeVito in a dish towel”), Bacon Sandwiches & Salvation is a raucous glossary of biblical characters, church catch phrases and pop-Christian personalities. The inspiration for Bacon Sandwiches & Salvation came from a situation Plass shared with a dear friend in church one day. When asked what the most important thing in the world was, both Plass and his friend responded very differently. “Salvation!” cried Plass. “Bacon sandwiches!” suggested his friend. Writes Plass, “That just about sums it up. A God who can create the indescribable tastiness of a bacon sandwich must be planning something pretty incredible in th

Day Twenty-Nine – The Love Dare: One Wife’s Journey

Back in October 2008... The scripture verse that touched me in particular today is – "...And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the LORD, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD." Joshua 24:15 Love’s motivation… It’s about the Lord. It’s not about me. It’s not about my husband. It’s not about how we communicate. It’s not about my need for love or his need for respect. It’s about God. He is love’s motivation. Praise You, Jesus! May I honor and worship You through my married life. And may my husband honor You, too. That was then, this is now... Render service with a good attitude, as to the Lord and not to men. Ephesians 6:7 True love must have the proper motivation, or it isn’t love at all. Our purpose should be solely for God, not men, not reciprocation, not networking or making influential contacts

Day Twenty-Eight – The Love Dare: One Wife’s Journey

Back in October 2008... The scripture verse that touched me in particular today is – Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. Galatians 6:2 Love makes sacrifices… Yes, it does. I’m not always good at that. It’s not so much that I’m selfish in the sense that I want what I want and I’m inflexible. It’s more that I hold onto hurts and have a problem trusting people once they’ve hurt me. That’s a form of selfishness, I suppose since I’m considering myself first. I suppose I need to pray for those against whom I hold grudges until my heart softens. That was then, this is now… He laid down His life for us. We should also lay down our lives for our brothers. 1 John 3:16 Jesus sacrificed His life for us. We are told that we should do the same. We may not be called to actually die for another, but death is not the only sacrifice we can endure for the one we love. The key is an attitude of putting someone else before yourself. Father-God, I want to acknowledge

Bible Study: For Such A Time As Now - Esther - Introduction and Chapter 1

The only book of the Bible where God is not mentioned by name. Deliberately written in the style of a Persian secular narrative to reflect the conditions and attitudes of the Jews scattered in Persia in contrast to those of dedicated Jews in the Holy Land. (John Brug, People’s Commentary Bible, 155-156) The book of Esther deals with the Jews who remained in Babylon by choice at the end of the captivity. It is the final historical book of the Old Testament. Xerxes reigned 486-465 BC. He was murdered by his son, Artaxerxes. Takes place between chapters 6 and 7 of the book of Ezra. The significance of the Book of Esther is that it testifies to the secret watch care of Jehovah over dispersed Israel. The name of God does not once occur, but in no other book of the Bible is His providence more conspicuous. A mere remnant returned to Jerusalem. The mass of the nation preferred the easy and lucrative life under the Persian rule. But God did not forsake them. What He here does for Juda

Day Twenty-Seven – The Love Dare: One Wife’s Journey

Back in October 2008... The scripture verse that touched me in particular today is – Oh, guard my soul, and deliver me! Let me not be put to shame, for I take refuge in you. Psalm 25:20 Amen, Lord! I see how this verse can be applied to being an encourager in a marriage or in other relationships. But it also speaks to me this morning since I’m subject to a background check for my new job, and my husband reminded me that a timeshare we used to have but stopped paying on would probably be considered a forfeit or a foreclosure. Please deliver me from absent-mindedness and protect us from being harmed by this new insight. Please let disclosure be enough to get me through the screening process for this new job. Love encourages… My honey has assured me that I do not burden him with unrealistic expectations. That was then, this is now... Encourage one another and build up one another…Encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with everyone. 1 Thessalonians 5:11, 14 We ar

Day Twenty-Six – The Love Dare: One Wife’s Journey

Back in October 2008... The scripture verse that touched me in particular today is – A rebuke goes deeper into a man of understanding than a hundred blows into a fool. Proverbs 17:10 That’s one of my favorite verses of scripture. Thank You for nourishing me with this, Lord. I’m sorry that it’s the only verse of scripture I’ve read today. Well not exactly, but close. I didn’t behave very responsibly today, and that is what today’s devotion is about. Father, show me where I’ve failed in my responsibility to You and in my marriage. Thank You for showing me that I didn’t spend enough time in Your Word. Help me to put forth more effort to be with You. And thanks for the reassurance that I will soon have at least one Bible study to do each day, keeping me in Your Word. Please forgive me. Love is responsible… That was then, this is now... Each one must examine his own work…in regard to himself alone. Galatians 6:4 We are responsible for how we love. We must measure and assess how w

The Knight by Steven James

Killer is on the Loose with an Ancient Manuscript as His Guide New thriller from critically acclaimed novelist takes readers on a shocking rollercoaster ride to stop this violent killer before it’s too late. Steven James is one of the nation’s most innovative storytellers—with a Master of Arts in Storytelling degree to prove it. For the past decade, he has been crafting compelling and evocative stories that pull readers into the thick of his brilliant, mind-bending plots, and his latest creative endeavor is no different: The Knight, the third installment in his bestselling series of thrillers, is full of the chilling twists and adrenaline-laced action that readers have come to expect from James. The Knight picks up in The Bowers Files series, starring FBI criminologist Patrick Bowers, who is assigned to tracking the country’s most dangerous killers. But when he is called to his most disturbing crime scene yet, Bowers begins to realize that this criminal mastermind has actually be

Secret Sister Ideas

Super Secret Sisters - here is a terrific idea used by one church to bless ladies who don't normally get involved in women's ministry events and draw them into the fold. This expanded idea motivates women to reach out further into their sphere of influence, which goes toward fulfilling the commandment in Mark 14 to love your neighbor. One church gave a Secret Sister (women who volunteered) to women who were not really connected or plugged in anywhere, women who are new, senior ladies or ladies who just didn't seem to make friends easily. You can image their surprise when they started to get blessed! It really meant a lot to be reached out to in such a way. Many Super Secret Sisters starting joining the Bible study groups, attending Ladies Night Out, and making friends. They run the Super Secret Sisters program twice a year for two, six-month periods. They found that you get to know more ladies that way. They also send out a monthly letter with words of encouragemen

A Different Kind of Wild by Debbie Alsdorf

Time to Leave Tame Faith Behind Get ready to experience the adventurous spiritual life God has for you When Debbie Alsdorf speaks to Christian women, she has a message for them: “Go wild.” And she means it—but she’s talking about a different kind of wild living than the image we’re most familiar with. “This new wild is about taking our lives back,” she says. “It’s about becoming women who dare to live differently—wild in surrender, wild in devotion, wild in service, and wild in following what God calls us to.” She encourages women to embrace the adventure God has for them, and watch their faith flourish like never before. She looks at how women can be risk-takers for Christ, stand firm in crises, confront fear with truth, dare to live by a different standard and find courage to follow a new life path. Alsdorf explains this call to becoming wild: “’Wild’ stands for ‘women in lifelong development.’” While this might sound intimidating and out-of-reach to some women, she points out

Day Twenty-Five – The Love Dare: One Wife’s Journey

The scripture verse that touched me in particular today is – 1 Corintians 13:5 Another scripture verse that touched me in particular today is – Luke 23:34 Lord, I’ve had issues of forgiveness with my spouse and with others. I pray that You will open my eyes to see the grudges I still bear and help me to release them, releasing myself from the same prison at the same time. I ask You to reveal to me any seeds of anger, jealousy, guilt or other issues that could grow into Unforgiveness and destroy them before they germinate and take root. In the name of Jesus. Amen. Love forgives… My trouble isn’t forgiving. It’s forgetting. I try not to use the past against my husband, but when his old behavior patterns surface, it’s difficult not to think about past disappointment. I don’t usually bring it up venomously, though. But I wish I didn’t bring it up at all. Still, this lesson reminds me of other family relationships because there is still so much of my past that I haven’t let go of. Hel

Day Twenty-Four – The Love Dare: One Wife’s Journey

Back in October 2008... The scripture verse that touched me in particular today is – Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God. 1 Peter 2:16 Love vs. lust… Some people live in freedom. But the Word of God also says not to cause your brother to stumble. And the closer I get to Jesus, the more I understand that God gives us freedom so we can choose Him…so we can choose goodness…so we can choose the right thing. That was then, this is now… The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever. 1 John 2:17 The world is passing away. Lust is passing away. We are growing older every day. Our looks are fading. Our bodies are sagging. Our priorities are changing. It’s more important to laugh with your spouse than to see every head turn as you enter a room with him. But a heart for God never goes out of style. The closer you grow to the Lord, the more important it will become th

Two terrific non-fiction titles by Stan Toler

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book! You never know when I might play a wild card on you! Today's Wild Card author is: Stan Toler and the books: The Buzzards are Circling, but God is Not Finished with Me Yet David C. Cook; New edition (August 1, 2009) AND God Has Never Failed Me, but He’s Sure Scared Me to Death a Few Times David C. Cook; New edition (August 1, 2009) ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Stan Toler resides in Oklahoma City, OK and is an international speaker and seminar leader. For several years he served as Vice-President and taught seminars for Dr. John