1 Peter 3:8-12
--1 Peter 3:8
British and American computer scientists have created artwork
that changes according to how the viewer feels. The computer
program analyzes the position and shape of the mouth, the angle
of the brows, the openness of the eyes, and five other facial
features to determine the viewer's emotional state. The artwork
then alters, based on the viewer's mood. If joy is seen on the
face, the artwork will show up in bright colors. If there's
a scowl, the image will become dark and somber.
Our moods can also affect the people around us - our family,
friends, co-workers, and acquaintances. Our life touches people,
whether for good or bad. Each person is responsible for his or
her own reaction to us, of course. Yet the way we behave makes a
difference in others' lives.
The apostle Peter encouraged us to have compassion for others, to
love, to be tenderhearted and courteous, and not to return evil
for evil but rather blessing (1 Peter 3:8-9). Following his
instructions may be difficult for us on a day when we feel
cranky. By depending on the Holy Spirit, we can have a positive
impact on everyone we meet - even if all we do is smile or
Let's paint our world in bright colors today. --Anne Cetas
My life will touch a dozen lives
Before this day is done,
Leave countless marks for good or ill
Before the setting sun. --Anon.
A HEART TOUCHED BY GRACE BRINGS JOY TO THE FACE.
Ask for the old paths,
where the good way is,
and walk in it; then you
will find rest for souls.
On a cold winter day in Michigan, a woman in labor was being
rushed to the hospital when the unthinkable happened. The
ambulance slid off an icy road into a ditch. A passing four-wheel
drive truck stopped and tried to haul the emergency vehicle out
but couldn't get a grip. That's when help arrived. An Amish
man driving a two-horse team stopped to offer help. He told the
ambulance service that the horses' shoes had been sharpened so
they would bite into the ice. Once he hooked up the horses to the
ambulance, they walked it right out of the ditch.
By today's standards, this young mother received help from a
source of strength that was old-fashioned and outmoded. But on
that day, old ways helped to ensure the safe arrival of new life
into the world.
Most of us wouldn't want to return to the old-fashioned ways. But
more than 2,500 years ago, Jeremiah reminded us that there is
nothing more relevant than the truth of the past. Even though he
was regarded as a relic of his time, he urged his neighbors to
walk in the old paths of truth so that they would find peace and
rest for their souls (Jer.6:16). Today, we can still find rest
and peace in Jesus, our eternal source of truth (Matt.11:28).
--Mart De Haan
Upon Thy Word I rest, so strong, so sure;
So full of comfort blest, so sweet, so pure,
Thy Word that changest not, that faileth never!
My King, I rest upon Thy Word forever. --Havergal
THE OLD TRUTH OF GOD'S WORD IS EVER NEW.
THE POWER OF PENTECOST
You shall receive power
when the Holy Spirit
has come upon you;
and you shall be
witnessess to Me.
A pastor I know and love is discouraged.... Yet when I think of
the alcoholics, drug addicts, and sexually immoral people he has
led to the Savior and a new way of life, I see him as one who
witnesses in the power of the Holy Spirit.
Because of what happened on the Day of Pentecost (described in
Acts 2), we tend to associate the Holy Spirit's presence and
power with amazing phenomena and large numbers. We forget that a
little later the same people filled with the same Holy Spirit
were rejected, flogged, imprisoned, even executed. But through it
all they were powerful witnesses! The Holy Spirit's presence and
power can be evidenced in a dynamic preacher who attracts great
audiences. But it is seen as well in the volunteer who carries on
a one-on-one prison ministry, in the person who witnesses to a
co-worker or a neighbor ...
The power of Pentecost is not especially reserved for the highly
gifted. Rather, it is available to all believers in Christ who
want to serve Him. --Herb Vander Lugt
God's guidance and help that we need day to day
Are given to all who believe;
The Spirit has come and He is the source
Of power that we can receive. --Branon
THE POWER OF GOD'S SPIRIT GIVES POWER TO OUR WITNESS.
Her children rise up
and call her blessed;
her husband also,
and he praises her.
On Mother's Day, 2007, British ational television ran an
intriguing story. Peggy Bush's daughter had died, so Peggy
absorbed the responsibility of caring for her daughter's three
children while her son-in law worked. Then, tragically, her
son-in-law also died. With both parents gone, Peggy took her
three grand-children in and raised them as if they
were her own.
In a world where wrong is glamorized and the lurid is presented
as appealing, we seldom hear of the good things that happen. Yet
this woman's love and sacrifice were recognized, acknowledged,
and honored as the nation took note of her as Britain's "Best
Mum" for 2007.
Today is Mother's Day in the US. Most of the efforts, sacrifices,
and expressions of love our mothers have given us will not be the
lead story on the news. Their recognition will be more personal.
But what matters is not the scope of the appreciation but its
On this special day, may we thank God for the mothers who have
molded our hearts. As we honor them, we fulfill the truth of
Proverbs 31:28, "Her children rise up and call her blessed; her
husband also, and he praises her."
A Christian mother's love contains
A gospel all its own,
Because the King of love has found
Her heart an ample throne. --Crawford
NOTHING TOUCHES A CHILD LIKE A MOTHER'S LOVE.
A CHILD'S WONDER
That they may arise and declare
[God's law] to their children,
that they may set their hope in
In 19th-century Scotland, a young mother observed her 3-year-old
son's inquisitive nature. It seemed he was curious about
everything that moved or made a noise. James Clerk Maxwell would
carry his boyhood wonder with him into a remarkable career in
science. He went on to do groundbreaking work in electricity and
magnetism. Years later, Albert Einstein would say of Maxwell's
work that it was "the most fruitful that physics has experienced
since the time of Newton:"
From early childhood, religion touched all aspects of Maxwell's
life. As a committed Christian, he prayed: "Teach us to study the
works of Thy hands ... and strengthen our reason for Thy
service." The boyhood cultivation of Maxwell's spiritual life and
curiosity resulted in a lifetime of using science in service to
The community of faith has always had the responsibility to
nurture the talent of the younger generation and to orient their
lives to the Lord, "that they may arise and declare [God's law]
to their children, that they may set their hope in God" (Ps.
Finding ways to encourage children's love for learning while
establishing them in the faith is an important investment in the
future. --Dennis Fisher
Our children are a gift from God
On loan from heaven above,
To train and nourish in the Lord,
And show to them His love. --Sper
WE SHAPE TOMORROW'S WORLD BY WHAT WE TEACH OUR CHILDREN TODAY.
REFRAMING THE PICTURE
As an eagle stirs up its
nest, hovers over its
young, spreading out its wings...
so the LORD alone led [Jacob].
For 3 months I had a ringside seat or should I say a bird's-eye
viewof God's amazing handiwork. Ninety feet above the floor of
Norfolk Botanical Garden, workers installed a web cam focused on
the nest of a family of bald eagles, and online viewers were
allowed to watch.
When the eggs hatched, Mama and Papa Eagle were attentive to
their offspring, taking turns hunting for food and guarding the
nest. But one day young, when the eaglets still looked like fuzz
wings.... balls with beaks, both parents disap peared. I worried
that harm had come to them.
My concern was unfounded. The webcam operator enlarged the camera
angle, and there was Mama Eagle perched on a nearby branch.
As I pondered this "reframed" picture, I thought of times when I
have feared that God had abandoned me. The view in the forest
heights of Virginia reminded me that my vision is limited. I see
only a small part of the entire scene.
Moses used eagle imagery to describe God. As eagles carry their
young, God carries His people (Deut.32:11-12). Despite how it may
seem, the Lord "is not far from each one of us" (Acts 17:27).
This is true even when we feel abandoned. --Julie Ackerman Link
Under His wings I am safely abiding;
Though the night deepens and tempests are wild,
Still I can trust Him - I know He will keep me;
He has redeemed me and I am His child. --Cushing
BECAUSE THE LORD IS WATCHING OVER US, WE DON'T HAVE TO FEAR THE
DANGERS AROUND US.
Neither this man nor
his parents, BUT
that the works of God
should be revealed in
If you didn't know him, you might think Nick Vujicic has
everything going for him. Nick has never had a sore arm. He's
never had knee problems. He's never smashed his finger in a door,
stubbed his toe, or banged his shin against a table leg.
But that's because Nick doesn't have a shin. Or a toe. Or a
finger. Or a knee. Or an arm. Nick was born with no arms and no
legs. Before you begin to feel sorry for Nick, read his words.
"God won't let anything happen to us in our life unless He has a
good purpose for it all. I completely gave my life to Christ at
the age of 15 after reading John 9. Jesus said that the reason
the man was born blind was 'so that the works of God may be
revealed through him.' ... I now see that glory revealed as He is
using me just the way I am and in ways others can't be used."
Nick travels the world to spread the gospel and love of Jesus.
Nick says, "If I can trust in God with my circumstances, then you
can trust in God with your circumstances ... The greatest joy of
all is having Jesus Christ in my life and living the godly
purpose He has for me."
Can we say that? Can we look beyond our limitations and have the
same trust in God that transformed a man with no arms or legs
into a missionary for Jesus? --Dave Branon
Lord, shape my life as only You can,
Guiding each day by Your loving plan;
Take what You need and give what You will;
My life is Yours to use and to fill. --Branon
TRUSTING GOD TURNS PROBLEMS INTO OPPORTUNITIES.
To be continued