Thursday, March 19, 2009
At the next stop, passengers got off, so Wayne and I scooted into seats. The influx of passengers was amazing. People packed into what I thought was an already full car. At every stop more passenger packed into the Metro with only one or two departing. The hands that clutched the metal rod were diverse. Some were chubby while others small and dainty. The assortment of colors representing ethnic diversity was wide. The economic diversity was also stark and wide. Some slept standing, which was amazing to me. We were jozzled back and forth with such spunk it seemed we might be spit out at any moment. Some gripped the rail passionately, while others balanced lightly touching the rail, while I sat comfortably enjoying the ride.
I was kinda glad none of the hands were wrinkled, because manners and kindness would have dictated that I give up my seat.
The rumbling ride required that you hold on...the rumbling ride of life requires that we hold on to the promises on God until they bring us to the place of possessing that promise. God's Word works and I am so thankful that it brings stablity in my life.
I'm off to see more sights in Washington DC. This time we waited until rush hour was over.
Friday, March 6, 2009
For this object lesson you will need Life to Death
Miracle Screen; green silk; money bag or gold silk; mouse or animal trap;
cardboard or large foam cross; 3 large nails; (Show
the Life to Death Screen with the Jesus side out.)
Because God really, really loved this
world He gave it His most precious, perfect gift-His son
Jesus. Jesus came to give life, not just life, but abundant
(Fold and open the
screen using the directions that came with the screen to
show the Satan side of screen. This takes a little practice,
but it is sooooo worth it! Make sure you practice this move
so you don't expose the load.)
Satan came to
kill, steal and destroy. (Pull trap from the
load. inside the screen.) His trap was working or so
it seemed to him at the time.
He stirred the hearts of religious
leaders to jealousy, (pull the green silk out
of the load inside the screen.) Yes, they were green
with envy. So much so that they wanted to get rid of
Then there was Judas, he was a
disciple of Jesus. He was chosen by the perfect son of God
to become part of Christ's elite team. He was chosen to do
miracles-lay hands on the sick, heal the blind and the lame
and cast out demons through the power of God.
But Judas wanted something else.
(Pull gold silk or money bag out of load.)
He wanted money! Satan gave Judas, what Judas
must have thought was a brilliant idea. It was an easy, get
rich quick scheme birthed in the heart of hell-betray Jesus.
The priest will give you money!.
(Pull cross out) His
plan worked. Jesus was dead. Hell celebrated. Nature
sobbed with a great earthquake. Finally, he had defeated the King of Kings and
the Lord of Lords. Jesus, the Son of God was dead.
(Pull the three nails and the cross out of the load.)
Satan's method of destruction-3 nails and two boards. But Satan did not understand God's math.
He thought 3 nails would hold Jesus to those splintered,
rough boards fashioned into a crude cross. But it took a
force more powerful than nails to hold Jesus to the cross.
Only love was that powerful.
Satan didn't realize that 3 nails, plus 2 boards does not equal five. Not
Let's do the math. (Tear the bottom off the cross so you have a plus sign in
one hand and a minus sign in the other)3 nails, plus 2 boards
equals 5; if that were the end of the story. But it's not
Something happened on that cross. Something Satan didn't
anticipate. Jesus paid the penalty of sin. With His precious
blood He paid the price to take away the guilt of sin
once and for all.
So let's do the math again 3nails plus 2 boards equals
5; take away the guilt of sin equals four (for)-given.
Satan didn't understand God's math. You see with Christ's
death on the cross, He subtracted (took away) the penalty of
sin. He subtracted (took away) your sickness. He subtracted
(took away) your fear. He paid the debt of sin with His
life, so you could go free from sin.
Satan thought a cross and 3 nails could
reduce Jesus to a zero-a nothing. Satan thought death
was the end of the Son of God, but not even death could hold
Jesus; because He had never sinned. Jesus broke the power of
death when He paid its penalty with the precious gift
of His blood.
This amazing feat of victory, snatched from the jaws
of defeat was possible because Satan couldn't take what
Jesus had already freely given. Jesus laid down his life as
a substitute for mankind, because Jesus loved you so much,
He laid his life down freely, He redeemed mankind from sin.
But God's message of the cross does not end with the things
he subtracted. The cross is also a place of addition. Jesus
came to give...to add to your life. He came to add life and
that life more abundant. He came to add peace, to add joy to
add eternal life.
The message of the cross goes beyond subtraction and
addition. Because Jesus never sinned death could not hold
him. On the third day God raised Jesus from the dead and
brought Him back to life. Think about that. Dead for three
days yet God gives Him life. God is all powerful.
loving, awesome God would send His precious Son to die so
you could be born into His family; so multiplication could
take place; so many sons could become joint heirs, enjoying
the privileges that belong to a member of God's family.
Now you can have
Life-- abundant life. God wants you to enjoy eternal life.
The God kind of life that can only comes from knowing and
making Jesus Lord of your life. Receive His gift. Receive
Jesus as your Savior.
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
It snowed in the mountains Sunday. The only time it has snowed at our house the entire winter. While it wasn’t a blizzard, the snow continued all day. I wish I could have been there. I love the snow. It would have been perfect cuddling weather too. I was ministering at the West Florida District Christian Education conference. It was a great weekend. I got to catch up with old friends and teach some workshops. I even got to preach at my dear friend, Pastor Alice Burdeshaw’s church. They are such good folks. That is my idea of an awesome weekend.
Wayne sent me a picture of the dazzling beauty of the pure, white snow. Snow is so white that it is used as a metaphor in Isaiah 18:1 niv "Come now, let us reason together," says the LORD. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.”
It is hard to imagine how white it really is until you have something to compare it too. A man looked out his window and saw a little dog bouncing and playing in the snow. What was that dingy, dog doing in his yard,” was his first thought. Then he realized it was his own little dog that he had always groomed and kept perfectly clean. The dog only looked dingy when compared to the brilliantly white snow.
Pure white, white as snow…white a symbol of purity and righteousness. How can that purity be attained? Trying really, really hard to do the right thing? Going to church? Moving away from everyone and everything that is impure—maybe like a cabin in the woods with no neighbors? No, while all these things are good, they won’t make you as white as snow.
We have all sinned, all of us. Those sins keep us from attaining the goal or hitting God’s mark of being righteous. But through the gift of God’s Son, Jesus, we can be forgiven. We can be pure, like snow. Not because we earned it, but because Jesus freely gave His life so we could be saved.
This routine was written to be used with the Color Changing Rope. An easy to use magic trick to illustrate the salvation message. Use it for Easter or anytime you want a salvation visual.