RISKY BUSINESS

girl-ice-skating

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=To-BnDwld8M

 

Romans 8:38-39 New International Version (NIV)
38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[a] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

It was a cool December morning and the ice was perfect on the local pond. Rachel grabbed her ice skates. She had finished her chores as fast as she could. Now, the walk in the feather of snow with the sun glistening was luring her.

The local forestry workman had started a fire in the round rocks on shore. The flickering flames gravitated her to warm her hands there. Some of her neighbors were there already. Most of them were about the same age between 8 and 12 years old. They were already wet from melting snow on their legs.

Soon it would be Christmas, and they were all so excited about the plans that were made. Some were going to visit relatives out-of-town. Linda, her best friend was staying and decorating with lights. They had already planned a Christmas Caroling Party.

This tight friendship began at their church. They were part of the younger choir group. At school, they both were persecuted for their beliefs in Jesus. They would not go to the wild parties these kids would attend with teenagers using drugs. They would not date or sleep with boys as other girls did. So they were mocked.

Rachel and Linda started singing and skating in circle eights and left and right turns, enjoying the easy gliding. Rachel had taught Linda how to do some figure skating. What a contest they started amongst the group.

A loud cracking noise was heard throughout the whole pond. The ice had broken, and Linda had fallen into the icy water. Rachel rushed over to where Linda had last been seeing being very careful herself. Where was Linda? She had floated under the ice. Rachel could see her, but could not reach her.

There was no time. Rachel made a quick decision. She jumped into the freezing water and held onto the unbroken ice. She grabbed for Linda. Someone threw a rope to Rachel and she went under the ice. Rachel grabbed Linda. She brought her above water and tied her to the rope so she could be pulled out.

Linda was safe. Rachel however started sinking into the icy water. Her woolen clothing had soaked up so much water, and her hands were so frozen she could not hold onto the edged ice. She disappeared.

Many people were asking “Why, why Rachel?” Why did God let her die? Why did Rachel risk so much? Her Pastor was engulfed at the service with these questions.

Rachel risked her life for another whom she loved. Linda was her best friend. She read books with her, laughed and cried with her, and had planned a Christmas Caroling Party with her. Now, she was gone.

It is not really the why we should ask God, but for what purpose. He has a purpose in everything. Rachel knew Jesus as her personal savior. She knew Jesus had “risked” His life for her.

She knew He would always be with her. Jesus had taught her the real value of risk. Risk for life. His death on the cross was for eternal life. Her risk had enabled Linda her life.

The Christmas Caroling Party was still celebrated. The group met at Rachel’s parents home. There was a table full of yummy cookies, Rachel’s favorites. Each of the 20 children lit candles and sang, “Joy to the World” in her memory. They said a prayer together and as they walked down the sidewalk to town, the snow began to softly fall. They sang, “Silent Night”.

There is a poem I love written about this time of our lives. If you have not heard of it, please read it here: “The Dash Poem”
http://www.linda-ellis.com/the-dash-the-dash-poem-by-linda-ellis-.html

I ask myself everyday, “How much am I willing to risk for Jesus?”
I will admit some days I fall into a mess of me. Most days though, He grabs me with Joy in the morning! I stay there until I go to bed and thank Him for a beautiful day.

Are we willing to believe His Words in Romans 8:28-29? Many of us have memorized this and say it often. In reality do we really understand what it means? To risk our lives with Jesus includes so much. He tells us this in His Words.

Matthew 5:11-12 New International Version (NIV)
11 “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Are you ready to take that risk?

soldier-at-the-cross

PRAYING FOR OUR VETERANS

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STRETCH OUT YOUR HAND

reaching-out-of-jesus-hand

Good Morning!  Good Morning JESUS, Good Morning FATHER GOD, good morning HOLY SPIRIT.  Good Morning and thank you for all Your blessings!

Shhhhhhhhh, did you hear Him?  Try it again, empty all other thoughts….shhhhhh

Good Morning JESUS……He whispers…“g o o d morning my child”….Good Morning FATHER GOD…. He whispers…..“g o o d morning my daughter” (or son)…..shhhhhh,

Good Morning HOLY SPIRIT……shhhhhh….“g o o d  m o r n i n g my Love”.

He takes my breath away not physically, but spiritually…..shhhhhh, “just hold me”; He says.  He takes my out stretched hand and holds me close.  At that moment, it is only He and I in total peace.

Is there possibly more that I could want or need?

Jesus says, “ I have given you everything.  Everything you need.  He says, “I am your great supplier of all there is”.  Dare I say what He says next….shhhhhh listen.

“Now let’s go my child, let’s pack your bag.  It will be for the long haul.  It will not be ready anytime soon, we will carefully fold, cover, and bring gifts I will provide along the way.  There will be songs, words, smiles, laughter, tears, righteous anger, unfailing love and compassion I am providing all of these supplies for our packing.  Before, I bring you Home again to me, the bag will be full of all My riches needed in Heaven.  Just take hold of my hand.”

We have all heard about the Red Sea and Moses, what do you think God said to him?  The Lord speaks to him more than once, about the Red Sea, this one is very well known.

 

Exodus 14:15-16New International Version (NIV)

15 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on. 16 Raise your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea to divide the water so that the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground.

 

Then much later, Jesus uses this same scripture phrase to show the strength and power of His mighty Will.  These are His miracles and yet many denied every one of them.  From the beginning to now, they still do not believe because they have no faith.

Mark 3:1-6New International Version (NIV)

Jesus Heals on the Sabbath

3 Another time Jesus went into the synagogue, and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Some of them were looking for a reason to accuse Jesus, so they watched him closely to see if he would heal him on the Sabbath. Jesus said to the man with the shriveled hand, “Stand up in front of everyone.”

Then Jesus asked them, “Which is lawful on the Sabbath: to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?” But they remained silent.

He looked around at them in anger and, deeply distressed at their stubborn hearts, said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was completely restored. Then the Pharisees went out and began to plot with the Herodians how they might kill Jesus.

In my devotions today, it was not the usual way.  I normally read a written message provided through one of my sources I receive.  Not today.

Yes, our Father told us more than once…stretch out your hand.  This is His message to us.

I awoke this morning praying for faith in this world.  God has provided faith in each of our spirits.  In the time of Moses He was showing us how to stretch out our hands in faith to Him.

Moses stretched out his hand in great faith to God.  This was not the first time God told Moses to stretch out his hand.  In God’s dealing with Pharaoh, Moses was commanded to stretch out his hand in six of the 10 plagues.  These were the plagues where God was insisting, “Let my people go.”  The final plague became known as “The Passover”.

Through reading these plagues again and again, we watch Pharaoh in our desperation of his cruelty.  He allowed such devastation, and was so hardened, he would not stretch out his hand, to his own people.

The man, whose withered hand was incapable of working, accepted faith, only God could give.  Jesus told him to stand up for all to see.  Does this sound familiar?  Moses was in front of everyone too.  Why do we suppose they are in front of everyone?  Both of these incidents could have been done in private.

Jesus had already healed the man’s hand and by faith showed everyone this miracle done on the Sabbath.  God had already shown Moses His power many times.  These times were to elevate the source of His Miracles.  Not the men, but God Himself.  He shows us this:

2 Corinthians 5:7New International Version (NIV)

For we live by faith, not by sight.

 

“What is more important”; Jesus had asked the Sadducees and the others.  Is it more important to watch this man in pain and work as you do in the Temple, or to show compassion for his need?  He also asked them if their own animals who fell on the Sabbath would not be taken care of.  They too would have to stretch out their hand in this care on the Sabbath.

I wonder what these two were thinking.  I wonder what they thought with this commandment, “stretch out your hand”.  They could not do anything out of their own hand.

His Word lives, He stretches out for our hands.  “Open the God breathed scriptures in faith”; He pleads.  Can you hear Him asking you: “My child, stretch out your hand”?

Ephesians 2:8New International Version (NIV)

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—

https://video.search.yahoo.com/yhs/search?fr=yhs-adk-adk_sbnt&hsimp=yhs-adk_sbnt&hspart=adk&p=Reach+out+to+Jesus#id=3&vid=f90159fe7d5a42f0f1db91f38640c36c&action=click