Rejoice in What?

By , October 9, 2019

“…we also rejoice in our sufferings…”
Romans 5:3 (NIV)

Man with raised arms looking into the sunset

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As someone who does a lot of public speaking I will often seek for a phrase or comment that makes people stop and ponder what I just said. When a public speaker thinks the audience is tiring of the speech or sermon, saying something that seems to be contrary to reality can cause interest to be renewed in the speech.

Our verse today is one of these curious comments in the Bible that seems to be nonsensical. Psychologists would say that people who find pleasure in times of suffering appear to be unbalanced. Rest assured this has nothing to do with our text.

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Who Was David Brainerd?

By , October 8, 2019

“I am torn between the two: I desire to depart
and be with Christ, which is better by far;”
Philippians 1:23 (NIV)

Dawn light through the trees

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David Brainerd, an American, was one of the most influential missionaries in church history. Yet, for all of his remarkable influence on missions, he was a most unlikely missionary. David’s father died when he was 9 and his mother when he was 14.

At 21 years of age he entered Yale to prepare for the ministry. However he was expelled in his third year because of his remark about a tutor named Whittelsey.

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How Much Is Enough?

By , October 7, 2019

“Give us today our daily bread.”
Matthew 6:11 (NIV)

Expensive car

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The question, “How much is enough?” was once put to a billionaire with reference to his immense wealth.

His answer was shocking because he responded, “Just a little more.” In other words he thought that he needed more than he had.

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Time Outs, We All Need Them

By , October 6, 2019

“Come with me by yourselves
to a quiet place and get some rest.”
Mark 6:31 (NIV)

Man walking along beach

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I recall a Christian worker in conversation with several of us making the comment that he was weary and needed a good vacation. He said that he was really looking forward to a rest. One of the people listening was better at speaking than thinking. He responded to the tired Christian, “Satan never takes a holiday!”

The comment may have been well meaning but it was a silly suggestion. I tried to defend the worn out preacher by responding that we are not doing the devil’s work so how he conducts himself is not relevant. I further said that we needed to follow Jesus’ method of working and not Satan’s.

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“The only blessing greater than good health is illness.”

By , October 5, 2019

“Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches,
in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake:”
2 Corinthians 12:10 (KJV)

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The title of our devotional today is a quotation from a truly remarkable preacher of the late 1800’s. His name was C.H. Spurgeon. His preaching alone was responsible for the first mega-church the world has ever known. He did not use gimmicks and business principles for growth to develop his church, he simply preached the Bible with extraordinary power.

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