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Let us not become weary in doing
good, for at the proper time we will
reap a harvest if we do not give up.
(Galations 6:9)

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Entries in Faith (252)


God Says... "It's all about..."

By Nick (My Experience As...)

I have a student that hasn’t been attending Sunday services very regularly lately. She is really solid in the Youth, and used to be really solid on Sundays. Most of the time she has some kind of excuse, he brother was sick and wanted her to stay home, her dad didn’t want to get up to take her, she had a school event, she had homework … Lot’s of excuses.

Recently I asked her why she was flaking so much on Sundays. She started to give me the list of excuses and I asked her to step back. There have been times she came with much more solid excuses. On Wednesdays I’ve seen her come and do her homework before and after service. I’ve even heard her comment that she had homework, but would get it done before school because she didn’t want to miss church. She has called for rides when her dad didn’t want to take her and I know she has left her sick brother to fend for himself … if she wanted to do something else. So the excuses are just something to get between her and the real reasons.

Once we got through that she told me the truth. She said she loved coming to Youth and got a lot out of it, but on Sundays, it just doesn’t make her feel the same. She doesn’t feel God, doesn’t get anything, doesn’t feel like the effort is worth it.

I have to admit, I get that. I spend my Sunday in the sound booth try to keep the old, twice fried by lightening system running without a hitch. I’ve been able to find pretty much every buzz, bad channel, and anything else causing problems. Things are working great, but I struggle to get into worship. I find myself distracted and rarely get anything out of the service. That’s a pretty rough place to be, and I totally get how this young lady feels.

Then I put a question to her. “Why do we have church?”

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Prepare Him Room!

By Pat

Well, another holiday season is here...each year it seems to come more quickly than the one before it, and I find myself unprepared! It's time to start getting ready for Christmas, my favorite time of the year. It's time for preparations to be made. We will go soon to buy our tree, and I will rearrange my living room furniture so that it will fit...but will I rearrange my heart to make room for Jesus?

I must decorate my house, inside and out. I will remove my everyday knick-knacks so that I can display my Christmas candles, music boxes, figurines and other assorted items. But will I ask Jesus to remove the things in my heart that prevent me from truly celebrating the joy of His birth? Will I discard my pettiness, temper, jealousies and sharp tongue so that my heart will have more room for peace, joy and brotherly love? Will I push away the stress so that I can feel the peace?

I will make cookies-lots of delicious cookies, and I will present them to my family and friends. Yes, I will feed them my cookies! But will I also remember to feed and nourish them with words of encouragement, love and understanding? And will I remember to feed myself a little more of the Word, maybe an extra morning devotion, a longer prayer, an Advent study?

I will play Christmas music, so that we hear the lovely songs of the season. Indeed, my house will have music! But will I also remember to add the music of laughter, love and warmth, the sounds of inner joy and kindness?

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The Trees

By Pat

This afternoon I was standing on my front porch just looking around, marveling at the beauty of the lovely trees and their bright fall colors. As I looked at the trees, I was struck by something I had never noticed before; although each tree in the yards of my neighbors was planted at the same time, eleven years ago when our houses were built, and even though each tree is the same kind, each tree looked different. The only thing about them that was the same was the shape. Their sizes vary. One tree has red leaves, one yellow, one almost all still green, and yet another almost totally bare.

It made me think if us, how alike we are, and yet how different. I have friends who are my age, yet even though our ages are the same, we are each at different stages of growth and maturity in our faith walks. We are very alike, but find joy in celebrating our differences, and it only serves to make us, collectively, a strong unit of Christians.

We should never compare ourselves with others. Just like the trees, God made each of us different, unique and beautiful in our own ways. With our differences, we help one another, and yet our sameness unites us with one another. So don't despair if you think you should look like every other tree in the forest, or be bigger, taller, or more colorful. Just trust in the Lord to grow you as He sees fit, and serve Him joyfully!

"The righteous will flourish like a palm tree, they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon; planted in the house of the Lord, the will flourish in the courts of our God. They will still bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green, proclaiming, 'The Lord is upright; he is my Rock, and there is no wickedness in him,' " (Psalm 92:12-15)

Pat is a good friend who is passionate about her faith and her family. She works from home supporting a family business, and loves to read, write and garden when she can, and spends every spare moment with her grandkids.



By Michelle (Graceful, Faith in the Everyday)

"Last year I used to think that maybe I didn't believe in God, but now I know I do." He announces it at the dinner table, and I pause, a spoonful of lentil curry soup poised halfway to my mouth.

"You thought you didn't believe in God last year?" I ask, trying to keep my voice light and bouncy.

"Yeah, but I'm good now. I feel better again," my ten-year-old son Noah says.

"So what made you change your mind?" I ask, soup spoon still steady in mid-air. "How did you come back to believing in God again?" I need to know how he did this. I want to be reassured it won't happen again. I need to know that my son won't spend his childhood mired in fear and unbelief, like I did.

"I don't know. I guess I just sort of waited," he answers. "And then, after a while, I felt like I believed again."

There is much wisdom in that little-boy answer.

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God Says... "I will meet your need."

 By Dusty (Reflections on the Life of a Christian)

We want and ask for the moon. We want perfect families, great jobs, fancy houses, sweet cars, and so much more. We want to go through life problem free, never encountering trials or hardships.

We want. We want. We want.

But what we want is not necessarily what we need. And should we have those things we 'wanted', often we find the happiness associated with them is short lived and quickly replaced with more wants.

Unfortunately some never learn that lesson and spend their entire lives chasing after their earthly material desires. They go from one dream to the next constantly seeking that will satisfy their want and fill their life with joy.

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