Saturday, December 31, 2011

Theological liberals vs. militant atheists - which do you prefer?

Check this subject out at Eternity Matters, December 30, 2011.



Christianity has fought a two-front war from the beginning:  Persecutors on the outside and false teachers on the inside.  Things haven’t changed, so we need to be on guard for both.
I think the bigger enemy is inside.


Thank you for this great overview of two kinds of enemies, eMatters.


I agree with your reasoning completely.  Atheists are tough, but it becomes very sad and disturbing when communicating with those who claim Jesus' name for salvation, but do not follow what His Word says.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Honoring those whom we have lost


Our Christmas tree has always been full of traditions.  If you were to ask me about each ornament and decoration, I would be able to recall the special event or Christmas it was added, or who made it or who gave it to us.  Each year, each tree is full of our precious memories.

I personally would not be able to have a "theme" tree for a year, as some people have, as I would miss all of our special traditions. But if all of our special decorations were destroyed in some way, we would just begin with new memories.

One way of helping each other deal with sadnesses in our lives, like the loss of dear people, is to display a special ornament of theirs which will bring happy memories and honor their life which was woven into ours.  The loss is not hidden, and the person is loved and honored even though they are not with us any longer.

Traditions throughout the year can give us a warm and safe feeling, but we must also be willing to move and change if need be.   You will not want to set up "shrines" for the loved ones you have lost, but enjoy your happy memories of them.

Let us praise the LORD for the people who have been woven into our lives, and let us strive to mend and revive relationships with those people we are still privileged to have with us.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Jesus is mighty now to save!

O Sing a Song of Bethlehem

O sing a song of Bethlehem,
Of shepherds watching there,
And of the news that came to them
From angels in the air:
The light that shone on Bethlehem
Fills all the world today;
Of Jesus' birth and peace on earth
The angels sing alway.


O sing of song of Nazareth,
Of sunny days of joy.
O sing of fragrant flowers' breath
And of the sinless Boy:
For now the flowers on Nazareth
In every heart may grow;
Now spread the fame of His dear name
On all the winds that blow.


O sing a song of Galilee,
Of lake and woods and hill,
Of Him who walked upon the sea
And bade the waves be still:
For tho' like waves on Galilee,
Dark seas of trouble roll,
When faith has heard the Master's word,
Falls peace upon the soul.


O sing a song of Calvary,
Its glory and dismay;
Of Him who hung upon the tree,
And took our sins away:
For He who died on Clavary
Is risen from the grave,
And Christ, our Lord, by heav'n adored,
Is mighty now to save.


by Louis F. Benson

Monday, December 19, 2011

Prayers for Prodigals by B.J. Reinhard #7 of 7

I decided to end this prayer series with the card back on the left side to finish with a change.  I hope these prayers have been good suggestions for you in how you can pray for your prodigals.  I know they have helped me, not only in praying, but in right ways of thinking of my prodigals and their situations.


As time goes by and we come closer to the endwe will see more and more prodigals appear among our own families and friends.  Let us not grow weary in praying.


"Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.  So then,  while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of faith."
Galatians 6:9-10










This is my seventh and last 
installment from the prayer 
card, Prayers for Prodigals, 
which has 21 prayer ideas 
on how to pray for prodigals:

These Scripture-based prayers are designed to be prayed for any loved one (a son, daughter, grandchild, the child of a friend, or even a spouse or parent) who has strayed from God into a destructive lifestyle. For the sake of clarity, the prayers are written with a son in mind. Please adapt them to fit your situation.


19.  Lord, in this fast-paced world of instant gratification, plant in my son the perseverance he needs to succeed.  Cause him to be still and wait patiently before You.  Help him to rest in Your power.  Establish the work of his hands.
(Ps.37:7; Heb.12:1-3; Ps.90:17)


20.  Turn my son's focus away from himself and onto You.  May he allow Your power to flow through him to others.  Teach him to love others as himself.
(Phil. 2:4; 2Cor.4:7; Mt.22:39)


21.  Cause my son to love You with all his heart, soul, and mind.  May he live all his days in love with and rejoicing in You.
(Mt.22:37; Ps.27:4; Phil.4:4)


Interested in further resources: http://www.praymag.com/

Prayers for Prodigals by B.J. Reinhard #6 of 7

Thank you for waiting for me to finish these posts.  "Life" continues and the blog goes by the wayside.

Meanwhile this is my sixth installment
from the prayer card,
Prayers for Prodigals:

These Scripture-based prayers are designed to be prayed for any loved one (a son, daughter, grandchild, the child of a friend, or even a spouse or parent) who has strayed from God into a destructive lifestyle. For the sake of clarity, the prayers are written with a son in mind. Please adapt them to fit your situation.


16.  Teach my son to live in freedom, animated and motivated by Your Spirit and in step with Him. (Gal.5:16,25)


17.  Teach my son to walk by faith.  Help him to see beyond his circumstances and trust You with every part of his life. (2Cor.5:7; Heb.11:1; Prov.3:5-6)


18. Impress on my son the need  to protect his mind, guarding its purity through the choices he makes about what he looks at, listens to, and thinks about. (Phil.4:8; 2Cor.10:5)   


Interested in further resources: http://www.praymag.com/

Sunday, December 11, 2011

We have some odd ways of cheering each other up.

See what Ed Welch has written on


What not to say


I have lived in pain, but even so, I do not always know what to say to a person in pain and sometimes in trying to encourage them I have said really dumb, hurtful things.


So when someone says something to me which they think is "kind" concerning my agony, I can choose to be so hurt, or I can shower them with grace and mercy in return as I assume they do not know how their words cut me in my situation.  


Thank you, LORD, for teaching us to express Your grace and mercy to others.

Prayers for Prodigals by B.J. Reinhard #5 of 7

This is my fifth installment
from the prayer card,
Prayers for Prodigals:

These Scripture-based prayers are designed to be prayed for any loved one (a son, daughter, grandchild, the child of a friend, or even a spouse or parent) who has strayed from God into a destructive lifestyle.  For the sake of clarity, the prayers are written with a son in mind.  Please adapt them to fit your situation.

13.  Thank You for offering hope and comfort to my son.  Thank You for restoring the years the locusts have eaten and bestowing on my son a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of despair. (Is.57:18; Joel 2:25; Is.61:3)

14.  Teach my son that following You is not about following rules.  Show him that what You long for is a genuine relationship with him. (Ro.6:14; Jer.9:24; Phil. 3:8,10)

15.  Lord, cause my son to grow up in You, maturing into an oak of righteousness for the display of Your splendor.  Help him to grow in wisdom and stature, and in favor with You and with man. (Eph.4:15; Is.61:3; Lk.2:52)

Interested in further resources: http://www.praymag.com/

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Teach Me

by Cherry Bieber

Teach me to sing from a broken heart....


Psalm 145:2 
"Every day will I bless Thee;  And I will praise Thy Name forever and ever."


So beautifully expressed, thank you,Cherry.

I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.

I have always had a "what's wrong with that?" take on things certain women in my life have said.  I wasn't involved in their "groups" and so I shrugged off what they said, but always with a nagging, "what's wrong with that?"

My fault.  I was in my own little safe and happy world, and they were in a "strange one".   I now know that these women were deceived into a wrong way of Biblical thinking.  It fed on itself among them and they were all heavily caught up into it.  I was too niave to understand or even be able at that time to have conversations of God's truth with them.  

It was not surprising that many of their conversations were about health issues.  We live in a fallen world and illnesses of every degree abound.  It is now years later, and I now realize how trapped they were into their wrong thinking, and I grieve for them.  My prayer for them is that they have escaped this way of wrong Biblical thinking into the freedom of God's grace as the man, Brian D., I referrence below, has escaped.

When our family tragedy enveloped us over a decade ago, some of those same people from our past have made inquiries about our health through the years.  Not "how is God carrying you?, or how can you continue in your pain?"  But always, "how is your health"

I knew something was strange with their questions ("what's wrong with that?") because it didn't seem like they really cared about us or our health.  It was more like a curiosity to them, a shaking of the head, and an acknowlegment to our situation as if we had caused it.

Lately this has raised anger in my inner person against these "friends?" because at the time I took them as caring Christians, but it seems they were just curosity seekers.   Now I must take my anger to the LORD and lay it at His feet...His feet of GRACE. 

Can you see how people can be caught up in Biblically wrong thinking?  They try to solve their own illnesses in their wrong thinking, and then go around diagnosing everyone else's  illnesses (unrighteously judging others).   One wrong choice leads to another and sin abounds. 

These women I have spoken of were deceived into the teachings of Bill Gothard.  Their wrong thinking spread like a disease ~~~ a spiritual disease ~~~ to even those of us who were not involved, even to this day.  They were so concerned about other peoples' sin when they were causing more sin in spreading their false teachings through their own families and the communities in which they lived.

LORD, have mercy on we sinners!

There is a place to go for information and God's grace if you have been invovled in Gothard teachings or have been hurt on the outskirts of it.  The blog, Recovering Grace on December 7, 2011, has The Disease Catalogue by Brian D.  It is quite eye opening to the way some Gothard-educated people think.  It is more than eye opening~~~it is a travesty!  

Brian D. ends his entry so encouraging, and so I will end with his words:

Those of us who are struggling with disease need not try to trace it back to a specific sin problem.  Are you dealing with sin?  Of course you are.  All of us are struggling with the problem of sin on one level or another.  How do you find growing victory over a sin to which you are enslaved?  Freedom from sin and peace with God can be found as you experience His grace by faith–and faith alone–in His finished work on the cross.  The more we grow in faith and the more we understand grace, the more we experience the peace of God.

“Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.” Romans 5:1-2

So how should a Christian who is struggling with disease respond?  Ask for prayer, seek out medical attention, and then remember the words of Paul, as he also struggled with physical ailment:

And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 2 Corinthians 12:9

Gentle women...may you be encouraged that God has not forgotten you in your pain.  He is there for you full of His grace and compassion.  Cry out to Him and He will incline to you and hear your cries.

Prayers for Prodigals by B.J. Reinhard # 4 of 7

Today I am keeping you on your toes by putting the card to the right.

This is my forth installment
from the prayer card,
Prayers for Prodigals:

These Scripture-based prayers are designed to be prayed for any loved one (a son, daughter, grandchild, the child of a friend, or even a spouse or parent) who has strayed from God into a destructive lifestyle. For the sake of clarity, the prayers are written with a son in mind. Please adapt them to fit your situation.

10. Produce in my son a humble spirit that is yielded to You. Teach him  how to live in You, and show him that apart from You he can do nothing. (Jas.4:10; Ro.6:13; Jn.15:5)

11.  Lord, reveal to my son how valuable and significant his life is.  Give him a vision for his purpose in the world, and show him the possibilities for his future.  Through You, he can do all things. (Is.43:7; Jer.29:11; Phil.4:13)

12.  Help my son to see that he doesn't need to condemn himself.  Show him that he can experience complete forgiveness through the work You've already finished on his behalf.  Give him the grace to repent of and let go of the past.
(Jn.19:30; Acts3:19; Is.43:18-19)

Interested in further resources: http://www.praymag.com/

Friday, December 9, 2011

Prayers for Prodigals by B.J. Reinhard # 3 of 7

Praying for your own dearly loved prodigals can become difficult.  Usually we call them "prodigals" because of the length of time that has transpired in their waywardness from God. 

Because of the time factor we become so weary on how to pray.  In our weakness we do not know how to pray, but according to the will of God, the Holy Spirit intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. (Romans 8:26-27) 

When I came across Prayer for Prodigals the LORD lifted my head in my weariness~~~may these prayers remind you that the great God of the universe hears your cries even if they are only groans.

This is my third installment
from the prayer card,
Prayers for Prodigals:

These Scripture-based prayers are designed to be prayed for any loved one (a son, daughter, grandchild, the child of a friend, or even a spouse or parent) who has strayed from God into a destructive lifestyle. For the sake of clarity, the prayers are written with a son in mind. Please adapt them to fit your situation.

7.  Remove my son's heart of stone and replace it with a new, soft heart.  Make this heart into a bed of fertile soil so that the seed of truth sown into it will grow deep roots and bring forth a rich crop of life. (Ezk.36:26-27; Mt.13:23; Col.2:6-7)

8.  Lord Jesus, reveal to my son that lasting refreshment and satisfaction can only be found in You.  In You he will find an abundant life.  (Jn.4:10, 10:10; Ps.1:3)

9.  Lead my son to friends who will graciously point him to You.  Cause him to be attracted to those who are attracted to You.  Scatter like chaff in the wind any friends who will bring him harm.  Give him the courage to please You, not man.
(Prov.13:20; Gal.1:10)

Interested in further resources: www.praymag.com

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Two "every day" Sparrows for a Cent

I have been contemplating Romans 5 and 6.  The depth and richness of just those two chapters is worth celebrating with great joy and glorifying God with happy shouts and the clapping of hands!  The work which Jesus did for us is practically too awesome for any words.

Just a few feet away out my kitchen window it is a joy to see God's creations at our bird feeder every single day.  We mostly get many English Sparrows.  People tend to think of them as "trashy" birds, or as "every day" birds, thus they do not even matter; but if you were to observe them for a while they are actually lovely.

In Matthew 10:29 Jesus was speaking of "every day" birds when He said, "Are not two sparrows sold for a cent?  And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father."  Were they English Sparrows?  How incredibly awesome for Jesus to use "every day" birds as well as our individual hairs to express how valuable we are to Him.

Last week, while I was thinking all these things, the feeder was full of sparrows and one "popped" out at me.  He must have had a white feather or two on the tips of a wing because his back had a white spot.  "It is all about genetics", I said to myself in wonder.  I decided to name this unique little creature instead of saying, "the sparow with the white feather is here again!"

The little bird touched me so because of his uniqueness.  I  do not know why I thought of "Nicodemus".   I suppose it was because of my deep thoughts of how Jesus has saved us.  

This man was a Pharisee who came by night to speak with Jesus, and then asked Him how a person could be born again after he was old.  It is an incredible account beginning with Nicodemus admitting that Jesus is from God, to Jesus explaining about being born in the Spirit by using the wind as an example---'not knowing where it comes from nor where it is going'.  Jesus speaks of Moses lifting up the serpent and likens it to the Son of God being lifted up with those who believe in Him having eternal life.  It continues with the famous John 3:16 and 17, to the sad fact of men loving the darkness rather than the Light.  Jesus ends with those who practice truth come to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.

I see my little Nicodemus everyday now and that little sparrow reminds me of my great God who saved even me.

Jesus said, "Do not be amazed that I say to you, 'You must be born again.' " John 3:7

Prayers for Prodigals by B.J. Reinhard # 2 of 7

Gentle women...

May you be encouraged to cry out to God for your prodigals.  LORD, hear our prayers!

This is my second installment 
from the prayer card,
Prayers for Prodigals:

These Scripture-based prayers are designed to be prayed for any loved one (a son, daughter, grandchild, the child of a friend, or even a spouse or parent) who has strayed from God into a destructive lifestyle. For the sake of clarity, the prayers are written with a son in mind. Please adapt them to fit your situation.

4.  Give my son the courage to be honest with himself and with You.  Spirit of God, convict him of sin and his need for You.  Don't allow my son to blame other for troubles in his life.  Show him that he alone is responsible for his choices.
(Jn. 16:8; Gen. 3:12-13; Ezk. 18:20)

5.  Lord, thank You for drawing my son with love and tenderness to Yourself, even in his desert place.  Show him that You are with him.  You delight in him.  Amid the clamor for his attention and affections, may he hear Your voice calling him and respond to Your deep, deep love.
(Jer. 31:3; Hos. 2:14; Zeph. 3:17)

6.  Cause my son to call out to You in his distress and confusion.  Cause him to seek You with abandon.  Thank You for promising to answer him.
(Ps. 91:15; Jer. 29:13)

Interested in further resources: www.praymag.com

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Prayers for Prodigals by B.J. Reinhard # 1

May each of you find great comfort in these prayers which I plan to post:  3 prayers in 7 blogs totalling 21 prayers. 

The prayers of a righteous person are powerful and effective.  The LORD inclines to us and hears our cries.  (James 5:13-16; Psalm 40:1-3)

From Prayers for Prodigals:

These Scripture-based prayers are designed to be prayed for any loved one (a son, daughter, grandchild, the child of a friend, or even a spouse or parent) who has strayed from God into a destructive lifestyle.  For the sake of clarity, the prayers are written with a son in mind. Please adapt them to fit your situation.

1. Lord, protect my son.  Build a hedge around him to guard him physically, emotionally, and spiritually.  Block his paths so that he cannot move toward activities and relationships that would harm him.  (Job 1:10; Hos. 2:6-7)

2. Deliver him from evil.  Rescue him from a destructive lifestyle.  Restore him to his senses, bring him home from the land of the enemy. 
(Mt. 6:13; Ps. 91:14; Lk.15:17; Jer. 31:16-17)

3.  Guide my son into truth.  Teach him to recognize deceptive ideas and thoughts.  Make him alert to the lies of the enemy, and teach him how to resist the devil by faith.
(Jn. 16:13; 1 Cor. 2:16; 1 Pet. 5:8-9)

Interested in further resources: www.praymag.com