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Thursday, July 28, 2011

Testing Our Faith

Devotion:

While Satan uses
Trials to tempt us to fall,
God allows trials

To test our faith and
Foster perseverance that
Will mature our faith.

Blest is the person
Who perseveres when tested;
He'll receive the crown.

Place your faith in God;
Trust His good and perfect ways;
All things work for good.

Bible Readings:

"Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4"

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28"

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Summer 2011 Vacation at Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada

At Niagara
Gateway on The Falls, our choice
Of lodging this trip,

Our journey began.
Delightful first impression,
Our room faced The Falls.

Incomparable
Breakfasts, with fresh fruit, oatmeal,
Omelet station,

And more, prepared us
For many breath-taking sights
Viewed throughout each day.

Concierge service
Competently helped us plan
Each day’s adventure.

A convenient
Hotel with shuttle service:
Transportation ease.

Niagara Falls –
Powerful and majestic,
Wonder of nature;

Created by God,
Twenty percent of water
In the world flows here.

Illuminated
Each night, the thundering Falls
Display their grandeur.

The Maid of the Mist,
A diesel-engined boat tour,
Carries visitors

To the base of the
American Falls and to
The basin of the

Quite magnificent
Canadian Horseshoe Falls –
A historic ride.

Eighteen forty-six
Provided the first boat ride
To The Fall’s basin.

Niagara Parks
Botanical Gardens house
Over two thousand

Fluttering, soaring
Butterflies amid flowing
Water and green’ry.

Leisurely walks in
The Royal Botanical
Gardens are stunning.

The views and fragrance
Of the abundant flowers
And verdant shade trees

Awake reflective
Thought and visionary dreams –
It’s beauty beheld!

A picturesque drive,
Niagara-on-the-Lake
Is not to be missed.

This historic town
Of elegant, landscaped homes,
And architecture

Of colonial
And federalist design,
Is most impressive.

Once the capital
Of the Upper Canada,
History abounds.

Cute bed and breakfasts
And many winery tours
Are available.

Stop at a fruit stand
To sample the local wares
Before going home.

A jacuzzi tub
Relaxed us from our travels
After each day’s trek.

Marriott’s Gateway
Provided a grand setting;
We’d like to return.

Place a visit here
On your lifetime agenda –
You’ll be glad you did!

Patience

Devotion:

Patience: willingness
To wait without frustration
On God's timetable

Patience: acceptance
Of difficulty without
Giving God deadlines

Patience: accepting
What the Lord gives, in His time,
Or what He does not.

Patience: inner peace
As we seek God's direction
And His perfect plan.

Bible Reading:

"Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him...Psalm 37:7"

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Seek the Lord

Devotion:

Come to the Savior;
Seek the Lord and call on Him
That your soul may live.

God will have mercy;
He will freely pardon sin
When you call on Him.

Spend time in the Word;
God's Word won't return empty:
It will accomplish

What He intended.
God will lead you forth in peace;
You will leave in joy.

Bible Reading:

"Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters...Give ear and come to Me; hear Me, that your soul may live...Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on Him while He is near...As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is My Word that goes out from My mouth: It will not return to Me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands...Isaiah 55"

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

God is in Control

Devotion:

Whenever we can't
Comprehend God's divine ways,
We trust His goodness.

We may not know why
Natural catastrophes
And bad things occur;

We can be assured,
With absolute certainty,
God is in control.

God permits events
Or sovereignly ordains;
We trust His wisdom.

Any disaster
Brings a call to repentance,
A time to listen

To God Who loves us;
It's an opportunity
To draw close to Christ.

All catastrophes
Open our ears to hear Christ
Who loves us dearly.

He works everything
According to His goodness
And worthy purpose.

Bible Readings:

Romans 8:28; Psalm 103:19; John 3:16; Deuteronomy 29:29

Monday, July 18, 2011

God Answers Prayer

Devotion:

Prayer is a gift;
Approach God confidently --
There is strength through Him.

In your life events,
Call to Him in Jesus' name --
He will answer you.

Wait for His timing --
He will work all for your good;
You can count on Him.

He enables you
With His comfort and presence
To have joy and hope.

Bible Reading:

"To the Lord I cry aloud, and He answers me from His holy hill. Psalm 3:4"

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Good Will Come

Devotion:

(A Haiku Poem)

God never allows
Anything to affect us
That will not bring good.

All that will happen
Will be for our good
Filtered through God's grace.

For us, His children,
Our God orchestrates events,
Or filters each one,

To ultimately
Bring us closer to Himself
And grant us blessing.

When events are tough,
Trust Him to bring good for you;
Our God will not fail.

There is a divine
Purpose for everything
God allows in life.

Bible Reading:

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28"

"(Habakkuk's Complaint)...How long, O Lord, must I call for help, but You do not listen?...Why do You tolerate wrong? Destruction and violence are before me; there is strife, and conflict abounds...(The Lord answers)...The earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord...the Lord is in His holy temple; let all the earth be silent before Him...(Habakkuk's Prayer)...Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength... Habakkuk 1 - 3"

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

FREEDOM

Celebrate the Fourth

With family and friends;

Thank God for freedom.



The Fourth of July

Calls forth patriotism,

American pride.



Independence Day:

Americans celebrate

Freedom won for us.



Freedom is not free;

Freedom comes with a high price . . .

Someone died for it.



We remember those

Who strove to build our nation

And fought for freedom.



They risked their lives to

Secure freedom for others

And a better life.

Jesus died for us.
He gave His life to free us
From sin, death, and the devil.


The Holy Spirit

Sets us free from old ways

To reflect Christ’s love.



Religious freedom –

A responsibility

And a privilege.



We fall on our knees

And we pray for our nation

That God may bless it.



Turn from evil ways;

Awake us, Lord, to follow

Your laws and values.


Let Your will be done

In me, the church, our nation;

May we follow You.






Saturday, July 2, 2011

Waiting on the Lord

Devotion:

The Holy Spirit
Works in our times of waiting
To mature our faith.

Fix your eyes on Christ,
Confess sin, and turn to Him;
Seek to know God's Will.

Examine motive:
Does my request honor God?
Trust His good timing.

Bear fruit for the Lord,
Ask, according to His Will,
Pray, in Jesus' name.

Love one another;
His response will be for your
Good and His glory.

Delight in the Lord;
Commit all your ways to Him;
Trust in Him always.

God is our stronghold;
In Him we will take refuge;
The Lord will help us.

Be still before God;
Wait patiently and don't fret;
The Lord will answer prayer.


Bible Readings:

Psalm 33; Psalm 37; 1 John 3:21ff.