Quiet Times

by Friday, 26 April 2013 05:59

A Biblical Case for Self-Love


The idea to love yourself is not just a concept fraught with conflicted emotions or fear of conceit. It is a command from God that takes self-denial, reflection and input from others to achieve. Here are a few scriptures to meditate over in our journey.
by Wednesday, 17 April 2013 12:46

When Your Finish Line Moves - Aftermath Thoughts: The Boston Marathon

I cry for the city I love. When we moved from the southern part of the US to Boston, over 25 years ago, I quickly felt I’d found the place I was meant to live. There is no place I know with more charm, four season beauty, gutsiness, and sports enthusiasm. Truly, God has set my boundaries in pleasant places (Psalm 16:6).

Though tragedy struck here yesterday, inspiration abounds. I’m inspired by those who ran the marathon, I’m inspired by those who supported the runners and I’m inspired by those who ran to help.

One particular younger friend of mine inspired me, who...when her finish line was moved…just kept running.

I’m reminded how we painstakingly prepare for the course of life we know.  We study, train, and try to equip ourselves to be successful.  However, as the scriptures state:

In his heart a man plans his course,
        but the Lord determines his steps. Proverbs 16:9

Many are the plans in a man’s heart,

        but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails. Proverbs 19:21

This is what the Lord says–
        your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel:
    “I am the Lord your God,
        who teaches you what is best for you,
        who directs you in the way you should go.  Isaiah 48:17

Rachel planned for this marathon all year long. Yet, because of someone’s senseless act of terrorism she was not able to cross the finish line for which she was headed.

What do you do, when in the middle of your race, everything changes and you don’t know where you are going?

Well, Rachel kept on running. Some of her friends ran beside her, and her husband with some friends marked out a new course….complete with a finish line and tape.

I realize how often life doesn’t go quite as we plan. Circumstances of life change, things around us and things within us change.  As Solomon states:

    I have seen something else under the sun:
     The race is not to the swift
        or the battle to the strong,
    nor does food come to the wise
        or wealth to the brilliant
        or favor to the learned;
    but time and chance happen to them all.  Ecc. 9:11

However, for a disciple of Jesus we have something (someone) to hold on to and someone who has gone ahead and marked our course.  It may be a different course than what we have planned.  In fact, it likely will be. There is a course marked out for you and me… those who have gone before will help cheer us through to the finish line.

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Hebrews 12:1

Thanks Rachel, for not being bummed out when your finish line changed. I’m so grateful, as I  run the course marked out for me, that I’m surrounded by my spriritual family that cheers me on, and runs along beside me. It makes a difference.

I remember fondly, though with tears, standing by my Dad’s side as he crossed the final finish line. Knowing he had lived his life wholeheartedly following his Lord, and loving His Word….when he breathed his last my sisters and I were able to exclaim, “You did it Dad. You made it!!”

However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me–the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace. Acts 20:24

For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time has come for my departure. [7] I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. [8] Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day–and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing. 2 Timothy 4:6-8

Please help with the Boston Relief Fund of the Boston Church of Christ that will go directly to the victims.

Shared from Jeanie's blog, My Morning Cup--Refilled...
Sunday, 24 February 2013 01:42

Purim - The Upside Down Holiday

This weekend commemorates a special time on the Jewish Calendar known as Purim. Jews around the world will begin on Wednesday evening to celebrate several days of joyful activities and reminders of God's faithfulness in preserving their people. For several reasons, all disciples would do well to recognize and celebrate this popular Jewish holiday.

Saturday, 12 January 2013 06:48

Free 40 Day Quiet Time Download from Nigerian Churches

Two years ago, the ICOC, Nigeria staff began publishing a 40 Days Devotional book to help the entire Nigeria church jump start the new year as we all embark on a church wide 40 Days Fast for Spiritual renewal.

This year's 40 Days Devotional book, is titled, "The Most Excellent Way".

Saturday, 17 November 2012 05:25

Personal Best for God - Conclude with Jubilee and Press On

Your Personal Best 7: Jubilee / Pressing on

"Consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you; each one of you is to return to his family property and each to his own clan. " Leviticus 25:10

Sunday, 28 October 2012 02:32

An Active Ambassador - Your Personal Best for God

I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ. Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints. Philemon 1: 4-7

We have been looking at various aspects of spiritual growth that will help us to do and be our best for God. This section addresses our identity as Ambassadors for Christ. Part VI

Monday, 08 October 2012 17:25

Beyond Good Intentions: Your Personal Best for God

This is Part V in a series where we are all striving to reach a new “personal best” in our relationship with God. Last time we looked at “living sacrifices”, and how we can grow in our faithful, daily sacrifices.

In this study we focus on the need to go beyond good intentions. It is easy to fall into the trap of “Someday, I’ll …”.

We pretend that the intention is good enough. Here are some scriptures to start:

Thursday, 20 September 2012 01:58

Your Personal Best For God - Faithful Sacrifice

This is part 4 of a 7 part series in which we are studying ways to reach a new “personal best” in our relationship with God. Last week we looked at “prayers that get heard”, and how we can grow in our reverent submission.

This week we focus on faithful sacrifice. Faithful personal sacrifice may be the most important aspect of maintaining and growing our relationship with God. Lack of sacrifice leads to a lukewarm heart. Consider these scriptures:

Saturday, 08 September 2012 02:08

Your Personal Best for God - Part #3

“During the days of Jesus' life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission.“ Hebrews 5:7

This is part 3 of a 7 part series helping us strive to reach a new “personal best” in our relationship with God. Last week we looked at “participating in God’s divine nature.” This week we will focus on praying and look at Jesus. How can his praying teach us so much about effective prayers?

Saturday, 01 September 2012 17:31

Reaching Your Personal Best for God - Part 2

Part 2 - Participating in God’s Divine Nature

“His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires."  2 Peter 1:3-4