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2 Timothy 1:5-2:1
2 Timothy 1:5-1:8
PRAYER AND PRESIDENT LINCOLN
A clergyman from New York, during a call on President Lincoln at the White House, said: "I have not come to ask any favors of you, Mr. President; I have only come to say that the loyal people of the North are sustaining you and will continue to do so. We are giving you all that we have, the lives of our sons as well as our confidence and our prayers. You must know that no boy’s father or mother ever kneels in prayer these days without asking God to give you strength and wisdom."
His eyes brimming with tears, Mr. Lincoln replied: "But for those prayers, I should have faltered and perhaps failed long ago. Tell every father and mother you know to keep on praying, and I will keep on fighting, for I know God is on our side."
As the clergyman started to leave the room, Mr. Lincoln held him by the hands and said: "I suppose I may consider this as sort of a pastoral call?"
"Yes," replied the clergyman.
"Out in our country," replied Lincoln, "when a parson makes a pastoral call, it was always the custom for the folks to ask him to lead in prayer, and I should like to ask you to pray with me today. Pray that I may have the strength and the wisdom."
The two men knelt side by side, and the clergyman offered the most fervent plea to Almighty God that ever fell from his lips. As they arose, the President clasped his visitor’s hand and remarked in a satisfied sort of way: "I feel better."
(From a sermon by George Bannister, Praying For America, 7/1/2010)
Several years ago the Peanuts comic strip had Lucy and Charlie Brown practicing football. Lucy would hold the ball for Charlie’s placekicking and then Charlie would kick the ball. But every time Lucy had ever held the ball for Charlie, he would approach the ball and kick with all his might. At the precise moment of the point of no return, Lucy would pick up the ball and Charlie would kick and his momentum unchecked by the ball, which was not there to kick, would cause him to fall flat on his back. This strip opened with Lucy holding the ball, but Charlie Brown would not kick the ball. Lucy begged him to kick the ball. But Charlie Brown said, "Every time I try to kick the ball you remove it and I fall on my back." They went back and forth for the longest time and finally Lucy broke down in tears and admitted, "Charlie Brown I have been so terrible to you over the years, picking up the football like I have. I have played so many cruel tricks on you, but I’ve seen the error of my ways! I’ve seen the hurt look in your eyes when I’ve deceived you. I’ve been wrong, so wrong. Won’t you give a poor penitent girl another chance?" Charlie Brown was moved by her display of grief and responded to her, "Of course, I’ll give you another chance." He stepped back as she held the ball, and he ran. At the last moment, Lucy picked up the ball and Charlie Brown fell flat on his back. Lucy’s last words were, "Recognizing your faults and actually changing your ways are two different things, Charlie Brown!"
Are you going to change your ways as of today?
One summer night during a severe thunderstorm a mother was tucking her small son into bed. She was about to turn the light off when he asked in a trembling voice, "Mommy, will you stay with me all night?" Smiling, the mother gave him a warm, reassuring hug and said tenderly, "I can’t dear. I have to sleep in Daddy’s room." A long silence followed. At last it was broken by a shaky voice saying, "The big sissy!"
Survivor Eva Hart remembers the night, April 15, 1912, on which the Titanic plunged 12,000 feet to the Atlantic floor, some two hours and forty minutes after an iceberg tore a 300-foot gash in the starboard side: "I saw all the horror of its sinking, and I heard, even more dreadful, the cries of drowning people."
Although twenty life-boats and rafts were launched-too few and only partly filled-most of the passengers ended up struggling in the icy seas while those in the boats waited a safe distance away.
Lifeboat No. 14 did row back to the scene after the unsinkable ship slipped from sight at 2:20 A.m. Alone, it chased cries in the darkness, seeking and saving a precious few. Incredibly, no other boat joined it.
Some were already overloaded, but in virtually every other boat, those already saved rowed their half-filled boats aimlessly in the night, listening to the cries of the lost. Each feared a crush of unknown swimmers w...
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Four scholars were arguing over Bible translations. One said he preferred the King James Version because of its beauty, eloquent old English. Another said he preferred the American Standard Bible for its literalism, the way it moves the reader from passage to passage with confident feelings of accuracy from the original text. A third man preferred Moffatt because of its quaint, penetrating use of words, the turn of a phrase that captures the attention of the reader.
After giving the issue further thought, the fourth scholar admitted, "I have personally preferred my mother’s translation." When the other scholars chuckled and asked, "Your mother translated the Bible?" He responded, "Yes, she translated it. She translated each page of the Bible into her own life. It is the most convincing translation I ever saw."
A woman once wrote Gipsy Smith after an evangelistic campaign to tell him she had been converted as a result of one of his messages. She said "I believe the Lord wants me to preach the Gospel, Brother Smith, but the trouble is that I have 12 children to raise! What shall I do?"
She received this letter in reply: "My dear lady, I am happy to hear that you have been saved and feel called to preach, but I am even more delighted to know that God has already provided you with a congregation of 12!" The new convert got the point!
(From a sermon by Jim McCutchen, Mom’s School of Preaching! 5/6/2011)
There are a lot of things you and I are afraid of. I found a list of phobias that I thought would be neat to share. Cyberphobia: fear of computers; Ecclesiophobia: fear of church; Lunaphobia: fear of the moon; Astraphobia: fear of lightning; Chrometophobia: fear of money; Europhobia: fear of the color red; Homilphobia: fear of sermons; Triskaidekaphobia: fear of the #13, Peladophobia: fear of baldness, Phobophobia: fear of fear.
In light of the popularity of the Dodge Super Bowl commercial "So God Made a Farmer" this is our Mother's Day rendition.
“So God Made a Mother”
He needed someone tender enough to cherish the thrill of a baby growing within her body & yet someone strong enough to survive the pain of childbirth, so God made a Mother.
He needed someone to take care of that precious baby throughout the night & still take care of her home & the rest of her family throughout the day, on minimal sleep, so God made a Mother.
He needed someone hard enough to say no to her children when she needed to & soft enough to breaks the rules at times & treat her kids to what they want, so God made a Mother.
He needed someone who could be in two places at one time & with eyes in the back of their head, so God made a Mother.
He needed someone stern enough to paddle a little behind when it was called for & yet someone tender enough to heal a skinned leg with a Band-Aid & a hug & kiss, so God made a Mother.
He needed someone with calloused knees, calloused from the hours spent there in prayer for her family, so God made a Mother.
He needed a theologian to share the gospel, a psychologist to deal with teens, an entomologist for those insect collections, a botanist for those leaf collections, a professor for those late night homework sessions, & a physician to always know what’s wrong, so God made a Mother.
He needed someone with a tough enough heart to show her child tough love & yet someone with the patience of Job & a soft heart to show trust to that child, so God made a Mother.
He needed someone with a heart that would always hold a place for that child & yet have hands that would eventually open up & let that child go to find their place in this world, so God made a Mother.
He needed someone who would have the grace to welcome that child that had made a mistake back into the fold, so God made a Mother.
He knew He needed someone to watch over us as we made our way through this life, so God made a Mother.
BY LIFE OR BY DEATH
John Piper, in his book, Future Grace, reprinted a letter by Carl Lundquist, former president of Bethel College and Seminary. In 1988, the doctors told him he had a rare form of cancer called mycosis fungoides, which invaded the skin over his entire body and ended his life three years later. He wrote this letter the day after he heard the news of his cancer:
That day in the hospital room, I picked up my Bible when the doctor had left. I turned to the joy verses of Philippians, thinking one might stand out. But what leaped from the pages was Paul’s testimony in chapter one, "I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed but will have sufficient courage so that now, as always, Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or death. For to me to live is Christ and to die is gain." And I discovered that a verse I had lived by in good health also was a verse that I could live by in ill health. To live - Christ, to die - gain. But by life or by death, ...
In 1858 a Sunday School teacher, Mr. Kimball, led a Boston shoe clerk to give his life to Jesus Christ. The clerk was Dwight L. Moody who became an evangelist. In 1879 while preaching in England the heart of a pastor named F.B. Meyer was set on fire, who later came to an American college campus to preach. Under his preaching a student by the name of Wilbur Chapman was saved. He engaged in YMCA work and employed a former baseball player named Billy Sunday, to do evangelistic work. Billy Sunday held a revival in Charlotte, North Carolina. Because the revival stirred the hearts of many, some 30 business men wanted to devote a day of prayer for Charlotte. In May of 1934 a farmer lent the men some land to use for their prayer meeting. The leader of the business men, Vernon Patterson prayed, "Out of Charlotte the Lord would raise up someone to preach the Gospel to the ends of the earth." T...