Why do we pray before meals? Habit? Tradition? For the answer, click here:
When I read this eight years ago it changed my pre-meal perspective and consequently my prayer. Now instead of asking God to bless my food, I bless God, the provider of my food.
Filed under Bible, childhood memories, devotional, family, food, God, inspiration, Jesus, philosophy, praise, prayer, reflection, religion, worship
“Grandma is this a front cold?”
“Yes Michaela, I think it is,” I answered as I took my grandaughter’s hand and ran toward the car. She must have heard her Dad (my oldest son) and I talking earlier about the expected cold front.
Before we entered the store, the wind was calm and the temperature was in the 70s. Ten minutes later, we stepped outside to a blast of wintry air and cold misty rain. The sudden chill sent us scurrying to our warm Toyota shelter.
Life’s climate can change suddenly too. One phone call delivering tragic news can cause our lives to go off course. The death of a loved one, a serious illness or a severed relationship can chill us with shock and disbelief. Yet in spite of life’s “front colds” our God is constant (Malachi 3:61). He doesn’t change.
So when I’m overwhelmed, I sprint to the one who’s steadfast and sure. I run to Jesus–my rock.
From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I. Psalm 61:2
During a weary time in my life I asked the Lord,
How Long? How long do I stay faithful?
Later that day I found the answer.
. . . be thou faithful unto death and I will give thee a crown of life.
The more sand has escaped from the hourglass of our life, the clearer we should see through it.
The Story of Flash E. McManus and Sted E. Eddie
Last week we had a Kids Crusade. It was based on a Nascar theme and the highlight of each night was a race between Flash E. McManus and Sted E. Eddie. Flash thought he was all that. He thought he could take it easy and enjoy the adoration of his pit crew and fans. After all, he had earned the title Flash–not only for his speed, but for his style as well.
However, in the other lane was Sted E. Eddie. He wasn’t as flighty as Flash. He didn’t have a record of fast finishes but he had something that Flash didn’t have–sticktoitness. He took race car driving seriously. Even when the fans clapped and cheered, Eddie waved back to them, maintaining his solemn race day face.
The two competitors stepped into their cars. Their hands gripped the steering wheels. The crowd and engines roared. Their cars vibrated in their respective lanes. The starting flag signaled and they were off. Around and around they sped. After a couple of laps Flash thought he’d relax and sit a while. You see, he was Flash and he’d always won his races by a long shot. It wouldn’t hurt to get a drink, wave to the fans and share some laughs with his crew. “I’ve got it made,” he muttered.
Meanwhile, Sted E. Eddie stayed true to his name and continued the race. Just when Flash thought he could cinch another win, he jumped into his car, stomped on the gas and sped away to catch Eddie. But this time his clutch jammin’, foot slammin’ skills didn’t work. Sted E. Eddie was leading and Flash was in trouble. Sted E. Eddie saw his fellow racer lagging behind. He let Flash catch up to him and shouted, “Come on Flash, let’s cross the finish line together!” And they did.
Isn’t that what life’s race is all about?
Helping each other to the finish line?
He that endureth to the end shall be saved. Matthew 10:22b
For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up. Psalm 69:9a
And his disciples remembered that it is written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up. John 2:17
Although God can be worshipped any time and at any place, there’s something about going to His house. In church our spirits connect with His Spirit and with one another. We’re free to release the cares of life and focus on Him–the object of our worship and reason for living. We greet each other, pray and sing praises. We give our tithes and offerings. We break spiritual bread by reading and listening to someone explain His word and tell us how to apply it to our lives. In the tabernacle of His presence He renews our minds, refills our spirits, restores our soul and refreshes our strength. Finally, when the lights are turned off and the doors are closed we step out empowered once more to do His will–to be salt and light.
May I always have a zeal for you and your house.
Filed under apostolic, Bible, devotional, encouragement, God, inspiration, Jesus, life, philosophy, prayer, reflection, religion, worship
The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change, the realist adjusts the sails. William Arthur Ward