Friday, 31 August 2012

Getting to know my Father....

Psalm 101:6  Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me: he that walketh in a perfect way, he shall serve me.
I have titled this post "Getting to know my Father" which of course refers to my Heavenly Father. I have written some posts here on my blog about my earthly father and I would encourage you to read them in the archives.
Our Heavenly Father is the perfect Father. Some of us have had earthly fathers who reflect some of the character traits of our Heavenly Father while others who read this may never have known a father who loves. Our Heavenly Father loves and cares for you and all that is true of His love for me in my life is available to you also.
The love of our Heavenly Father is a love that allows circumstances into our lives that are going to build our character and give us the opportunity to become more like Jesus. This kind of love is not always pleasant and includes the love of discipline.
God is my Father. He is my Father because I have become His child through salvation in the Lord Jesus Christ. As my Father, He is my Protector. His watchful eye is upon me to guard me against the evil intentions of those who would hurt me. His watching eyes see what is happening to me.
Proverbs 5: 21  For the ways of man are before the eyes of the Lord, and he pondereth all his goings.
My Father loves me and will not give me unheathly or useless things when I beg for them - simply because Father knows best. He has a goal in mind for me and since I do want that which He has planned for me, I choose to line up my desires and wishes with that which He decides is best for me.
I trust my Father. He wants only what is best for me. When He says "Don't do that" - it is for my own good and to keep me from getting hurt.
He disciplines me. I want that discipline because even though I may not like it, I do want to be in right relationship with my Father so I want to learn to live to please Him. He disciplines those who mistreat me - just because I am His child. When and if I am mistreated by other people, my Father sees it, He knows what is happening at all times because He has His eye on me.
He comforts me. My cares are His cares. When something bothers or troubles me, I can tell my Father. He is always available to me, listening to me when I talk with Him and responds to my questions.
1 Peter 5:7 Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.  
He provides for me. He is my Father. I can depend on Him to supply every need in my life. He sees my needs and provides for me.
My Father is always with me. He has promised to never ever leave me so I am never alone and not afraid.
Hebrews 13 - for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.  So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.
It's not about me - It's about bringing glory to His Name.  I am available to my Father - I want to be useful to Him - work in His kingdom and bring glory to Him. I hope and pray that through my life, my Father will further His plans for others in this world.
In His Will, For His Glory, To be used by Him is my prayer. Nothing happens by chance. The Lord God Almightly is my Heavenly Father.

You ask - How can I have this Heavenly Father in my own life? There is only just one way and that is through the Lord Jesus Christ. The Lord Jesus died on the cross to save us and to bring us into relationship with God the Father. While we are living in sin, we cannot be in relationship with the Heavenly Father simply because He is Holy and cannot tolerate sin in His presence. But He provided the way for us  when He sent His only begotten Son - the Lord Jesus Christ to earth. Jesus came as a baby born in Bethlehem, showed us how to live and then died on the cross for our redemption. He  died on the cross. was buried, and rose from the dead on the third day. He ascended into Heaven to the right Hand of the Father but the Holy Spirit is available to us to live within us.  Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and be saved today.
John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Planning for Tomorrow and for Life...

Life is a continual path of making choices and decisions and plans. Some of the decisions we must make are clear and straight forward while others are very difficult and in our minds we toss around the pros and cons. Praying for God's guidance, and seeking His direction from the Bible are the most important ways to receive the input that we need in our decision making. In James 4:13-15 we find these words:
13 Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain:
14 Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.
15 For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.
From this passage we understand that our lives are in the Hand of the Lord. The fact that we are breathing and have life in our bodies today is a gift from the Lord. We need to recognize that it is a gift from the Lord that we are able to have a job, earn money, and that His purposes for our lives override anything that we think we may personally want to do with our lives and for ourselves.   If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.
We look not to what other people have in their lives, or what they do with their lives and thereby choose to do what they do in order to live a happy copycat life.... No - we seek the direction and path that God has chosen for us as individuals and ask - Lord what do you have planned for me - how can I serve You and fulfill the plan you have for me?? The road God has chosen for you may be very difficult and unglamorous but still by the power of God filled with hope and joy as you see Him working and proving the truth of the Bible over and over again.
Where is God leading me and what does He want from me? - these are hard questions for many people but we need not doubt the Lord in His plans for us. No matter who we are or what age and stage of life we are in - God has plans for us.  Many elderly people wonder how they can be used of the Lord in their later years. I would like to encourage anyone who is house bound for any reason to take up the role of "prayer warrior." Pray for our churches leaders and Pastors to follow the Lord and  not shrink from their responsibilities in these last days, that they preach the truth and not give way to the soft fuzzy feel good preaching that abounds today. Pray for our children, students, and youth to say NO to the culture of moral corruptness that is everywhere. Pray government leaders to stop the homosexual movement and make God honoring choices for our country. Pray for the pornography and vile entertainment business to be shut down.  Pray for health for your loved ones etc. Pray for salvation for the lost and for a spiritual awakening in our land. Keep praying even if you don't see results in your lifetime.
For a stay at home Mom as I myself am, I know that having spent most of my so called "good years" raising my three sons and now caring for my special needs daughter, my life seems very unglamourous to many people who have careers and who travel and spend time in many different places. I want to be faithful to the Lord in what He has called me to do, to be a person of prayer,  and  I add my voice to John's and say with him in 3 John 1:4  where he says:   I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.

1 Peter 4: 19 Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.
So if you are in a place today where you are making plans and choices for your future or just wondering what you can do for the Lord in your stage of life, - may I encourage you to seek the Lord and remember to lay up your treasure in Heaven - forget about living a life of pleasure and ease, forget about the "American Dream" and rather serve the Lord in the place he calls you to serve.
In Jeremiah 29:11 the Lord says  For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Thoughts from Jan Markel on Israel, Iran, War, Muslim Brotherhood, etc

Matthew 24: 3-8 says  
And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?
And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.
For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
All these are the beginning of sorrows.

 I want to post an article written by Jan Markel as it is very informative in relation to the news of the day - including Hurricane Isaac, Israel/Iran conflicts, war, Syria, US politics.
I would encourage everyone reading this to get in touch with Jan Markel's ministry  -  www.olivetreeviews.org  where you can sign up for emails, newsletters etc. Please take the time to read all of Jan's article that I have posted here. She writes...

The Decent into Darkness  (written by Jan Markel )

Joel Rosenberg calls the Middle East the "epicenter." One Bible translation calls it the "navel (center) of the earth." While your church pulpit may not focus on it, the world's media does but they don't have their lens properly focused. Because of the silence in the church, most Christians yawn at the topic. I urge you to listen up!
Some news reports say that Iran will have "the bomb" by October 1.  OK, so you have "Iran fatigue." We've heard this news forever and by now it's just crying wolf. Actually, former U.S. Ambassador to Israel Martin Indyk called the whole situation "crying wolf." That is a reckless way to blow off a potentially lethal scenario.
Columnist Daniel Greenfield writes that Israel will act, and before the U.S. election November 6. He states, "The liberal West has its illusions about the enemy. Israel has little room for those illusions. It will act because it is alone as few other countries on earth are. It will act because it cannot afford to be Poland, Czechoslovakia or Tibet -- sacrificed in the great game of nations. It will act because it has no real choice but to act. It will act because for it this is not a set of talking points, a diplomatic program, or a regional agenda, it is life or death. It will act, because for all its flaws, its survival is on the line."   

There are many statements that Israel can only rely on herself. In their current state of spiritual blindness, most Israelis are not willing to say that God would never allow a nuclear strike against them. And I believe He would not.
But Israel cannot be called a "cancerous tumor" much longer and be reminded that Tel Aviv will be reduced to ashes any minute without responding.  British officials say Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has begun a process of 'sounding out' his voters to gauge support for airstrikes and build a case for military action.

Israeli leaders believe that President Obama, locked in a close election battle with Republican Mitt Romney, would be forced to back an Israeli strike -- even though US military chiefs are against it -- for fear of alienating Jewish voters in key swing states such as Florida. Thus now is the perfect time. The golden opportunity window is the month of September when both presidential candidates are focused like a laser beam on their election.

Moving on in the region, the destruction of Syria is now in full swing. What began as a popular uprising 18 months ago is now an all-out civil war fueled by regional and global powers that threaten to engulf the entire Middle East. Reports indicate that the Syrian "rebels" are just plain old al-Qaida terrorists who are doing what they do best: Terrorize. So there isn't even a side for which we can root! It's absolute evil vs. absolute evil. And that means that absolute evil is in charge of a massive number of chemical weapons. And according to Isaiah 17, there could be an Israeli strike on Damascus at any time.
Additionally, last week Iran's ally in Lebanon, Hezbollah, held its largest-ever military exercise which can only be seen as preparation for a possible imminent war between Israel and Iran.
Thanks to the White House and the State Department in the U.S., the Muslim Brotherhood is now ensconced in various parts of the Middle East. The current regime in Washington called them a "good-old boys' club" last winter. It was suggested that the Brotherhood somewhat resembled the Lutheran Brotherhood: They focused on good deeds. It was suggested that the Muslim Brotherhood was secular and anything but dangerous. Those benign, secular do-gooders in Egypt have been tormenting political opponents and Christians and crucified at least one innocent kid. The bottom line is that they are anything but a bunch of Boy Scouts.
Islamic critic Pamela Geller writes, "Egypt's President Morsi is instituting a reign of terror to consolidate power, and if Egypt is now descending into darkness, can other Mideast nations be far behind?"  

Egypt is the "King of the South" in Bible prophecy. She plays a prominent role in end-time battles which are forming alliances now.
Someone who tells the inconvenient truth as I often do is Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann. She has been raising questions about possible ties between the family of Huma Abedin, a top aide of Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, and the Muslim Brotherhood. She and a handful of others have called for an inquiry into a potential Muslim Brotherhood infiltration within the Obama administration.  

One who has tackled this issue is Andrew McCarthy, a former federal prosecutor who put the blind sheik behind bars in the first World Trade Center bombing. He is the author of The Grand Jihad: How Islam and the Left Sabotage America. He believes Bachmann has been proved right in her Muslim Brotherhood inquiries.

McCarthy states, "Congresswoman Bachmann knows Washington well enough not to be holding her breath waiting for an apology. What is really stunning and demoralizing to me, though, is that only 5 members of Congress out of 535 have had the conscientiousness and courage to stand up and be counted on this.

"We have an obvious national security problem, and it goes way beyond Huma Abedin. We have several people with significant Islamist ties being consulted by our government on foreign and domestic policy, including counter-terrorism policy. We are simultaneously seeing American policy shift dramatically in a direction that favors the Muslim Brotherhood, an avowed incorrigible enemy of America and the West."  

McCarthy concludes, "Yet we can't get even one percent of our elected federal representatives to raise an eyebrow? I speak to a lot of people around the country and a lot more than one percent of them are worried about what's happening."

The Muslim Brotherhood and its affiliates are being consulted on counter-terrorism policy -- to the point that our federal agencies are purging their training materials of references to Islam.

Another who has been diligently reporting on this is Walid Shoebat. Find out more info about his efforts here.
While I tend to vote for the right side of a political ticket, one can't help but wonder why this is the third Republican convention in a row to be interrupted by a hurricane! It got into gear this year just as they solidified a two-state "solution" as part of their platform last week.

Jewish Congressman Eric Cantor (R-VA) and AIPAC, the largest pro-Israel Jewish lobby, pushed for a "two-state" position to be included in the Republican platform. It was approved by vote last Tuesday (the day Isaac began) and is now awaiting formal approval at the Republican Convention. A Bachmann representative offered a one-state solution but Rep. Eric Cantor and AIPAC encouraged the two-state solution. The irony of ironies:  The Christians stand for Israel, while the Jewish voices prevailed with Palestinian accommodation!   
Hurricane Isaac falls on the seventh anniversary of Katrina, an event forever seared into our minds and hearts. To keep up on some incredible comparisons, sign up for White House correspondent Bill Koenig's postings and e-alerts. Find that info here. Bill is one of our speakers at "Understanding the Times 2012."  His weekly e-newsletter is essential to understand the times. 
So there you go. The pesky Middle East is just always in the way. It is always a nuisance. It is always whispering the inconvenient truth. And it's descending into darkness. 

Is anybody listening?
That is the end of Jan Markels letter. Please for more information on the above story, contact her at her ministry  www.olivetreeviews.org

Monday, 27 August 2012

Why Go to Church on Sunday??

Sunday Sermon Review, August 26, 2012
A sermon review from my home church that I attend regulary
Psalm 149:1 Praise ye the Lord. Sing unto the Lord a new song, and his praise in the congregation of saints.
This was the final service in the series on "Worship"
The service began with singing of several songs, which included "Lead Me to the Cross", "Nothing but the Blood of Jesus", and "In Christ Alone".
This was followed by a children's story where the children were asked the question - "Why do you always go to church?" Some of the answers were -  to worship the Lord, to sing with other people, and to learn new things from the preacher's message.
Hebrews 10:25  Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
Pastor Ben came up to preach and he continued with the same question - Here is some of what he said.
Why Come to Church on Sunday?
 Do we need to worship with others? and if so Why?
Worship is - our response to God for who He is and what He has done for us
While worhipping God alone is a very important part of the Christian life, worshipping together with others is a different experience. Pastor Ben compared worshipping corporately  to being at a sports event or concert and how the atmosphere in such a place is an experience much different than  watching a sports event on TV or listening to the same music on your ipod.
Worship changes our lives.
Jeremiah 2:5 Thus saith the Lord, What iniquity have your fathers found in me, that they are gone far from me, and have walked after vanity, and are become vain?
What we worship is what we become, It shapes the core of our being
Worshipping together as a congregation allows us to worship together as united in Christ
- someone who has cancer and knows the time is short here
- we can kneel before the Holy God together
- we can take part in communion
Worship is not just about "me and Jesus"
Our world is individualistic
Our world view shapes our thinking
Deuteronomy 16:11 says  And thou shalt rejoice before the Lord thy God, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite that is within thy gates, and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, that are among you, in the place which the Lord thy God hath chosen to place his name there.
Jews and Gentiles must worship God together - not separate
In the book of Revelation, we see community in worship before God
Our relationship with God and others is tied together
Worship is about pledging allegiance to God publicly - make God first in our life,
We pledge allegiance to God as King
Pastor Ben drew similarities to the ceremony of becoming a Canadian citizen - it is done publicly and it is a time of rejoicing.
So also worship is public
Pastor Ben quoted the words from the song Lead Me to the Cross as a recommitment to Christ and a pledging of allegiance to the Lord.
The closing song was "I am Free"
Here are the words to the song Lead me to the Cross:

Lead Me to the Cross 
(by Hillsong United)

Savior I come
Quiet my soul remember
Redemptions hill
Where Your blood was spilled
For my ransom
Everything I once held dear
I count it all as lost

Lead me to the cross
Where Your love poured out
Bring me to my knees
Lord I lay me down
Rid me of myself
I belong to You
Lead me, lead me to the cross

You were as I
Tempted and trialed
You are
The word became flesh
Bore my sin and death
Now you're risen

To your heart
To your heart
Lead me to your heart
Lead me to your heart

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Where did we all come from??

How did the planet Earth get here and how did you get to this planet? Was there a big bang or how was the earth formed? Where did we all come from? Scientists are searching for answers to these types of questions. The answer of course is in the Bible. We only need to read our Bibles as all these questions are directly answered for us. The reason people want evolution and the big bang to be true is because they do not want to be accountable to God for the way they are living their lives. If they refuse to believe in God, they somehow assume that they then will not give account. That is a lie of the devil. God is true, the Bible is the true Word of God and whether you choose to believe it or not does not change the fact that it is true. It remains the truth whether you and I choose to reject it or believe it. Our choice to believe or reject the truth of the Bible determines our destiny.
Genesis 1: 1-2 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
Day 1 - God forms day and night.  And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.  And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.
Day 2 - God creates the heaven we call sky.  And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.  And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.
Day 3 -God made the seas and the earth, grass and fruit trees.  And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good.  And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.  And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the third day.
Day 4  - God created the sun and the moon. And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years: And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.  And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.  And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,  And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.
Day 5 - God creates the birds and the sea creatures, whales.  And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.  And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying,  Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth. And the evening and the morning were the fifth day.
Day 6 - God creates human beings ( Adam and Eve) and the animals in the world. And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so. And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good.  And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.  So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.  And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.  And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.
Day 7 God rested from all His work. Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them.  And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made.  And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.

Thursday, 23 August 2012

My Roll Kuchen & Watermelon Pictures...

Psalm 34:1-3 I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.  My soul shall make her boast in the Lord: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad. O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together.

Sometime ago I wrote a post titled Roll Kuchen &Watermelon and Healthy Eating - posted July 29, 2012. Well today I picked 2 ripe watermelons from my garden and I made some Roll Kuchen. Roll Kuchen and Watermelon is such a super delicious meal. I want to share a few pictures of the watermelon and the Roll Kuchen that I made. I shared the recipe in my earlier post.
Doesn't this look delicious??

I also made some milk free Roll Kuchen since I am milk allergic. This is a picture of my milk free Roll Kuchen. They turned out very well too!

 Note: If anyone out there is interested in my milk free Roll Kucken recipe that I came up with today - I will gladly share it. Just leave a request for the recipe in the comment section.

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Declaration of Faith!!

Don't you just long for the time when President Obama or Prime Minister Stephen Harper would make a declaration that said this - It would be the top story on CBC, ABC and CBS for sure:

I make a decree, That in every dominion of my kingdom men tremble and fear before the God of Daniel: for he is the living God, and stedfast for ever, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed, and his dominion shall be even unto the end. He delivereth and rescueth, and he worketh signs and wonders in heaven and in earth, who hath delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.
The above decree of course comes from the Book of Daniel in chapter 6. Daniel 6 was a part of my morning devotions this morning and I just began to long for the day when my Canadian Prime Minister Harper or the USA President Obama would get a real glimpse of who God is and they would be willing to take this kind of a stand for the One and Only true living God. So many times we see our leaders embracing all religions. You see this being played out when a national tragedy happens, an interfaith ( all religions included) service is held. It is sad because people are trusting empty religions that can never help them at all. If only the LORD God had His rightful place and the true gospel of Christ - that is salvation through Jesus Christ alone, were proclaimed, then real comfort and hope could be seen in trying and difficult times.
In Matthew 11:28-29 Jesus says Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
and in Luke 4:18 Jesus says The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
So we see that the One who truly cares and can comfort and heal broken hearts is Jesus. None of the other religions that are out there are of any help at all ( not Islam, not Hinduism, not Mormonism, not Budhism, or paganism etc) . Come to Jesus today - Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you 1Peter 5:7
Prayer: Heavenly Father I pray that You would give special insight into the hearts of Prime Minister Harper and President Obama that both of them would come to know that You alone are Only One true God, the LORD God Almightly, creator of Heaven and Earth. I ask that You would arrange circumstances and provide a national opportunity for them to stand boldly for You and declare to all the peoples and nations of the world that You alone are God - in You alone is salvation.To You Father God be all glory and power now and forever, In Jesus precious Name, Amen

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Bucket List...

Only one life, twill soon be past; Only what's done for Christ will last. C.T.Studd
1 Timothy 6:7-9  For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.

Have you ever made up a bucket list? First let me explain what I mean by the term bucket list - it is a list of things that you would like to do or things you would like to accomplish before your life is done. It can be a written list or just a mental list - just some things in your mind that you know you would like to do. Personally I have never written up a bucket list. I have thought of few things that would be nice to do - that being taking a road trip to Prince Edward Island. The other idea is to visit the land of Israel and walk where Jesus walked and experience the locations at which many of Jesus's miracles etc took place. It is unlikely that I will do either of these in my lifetime though due to family and health circumstances.
But thinking about the concept of a bucket list brings me to ask the question - What really does hold value in your life? or the question could be worded in a different way - If you were told you have only 30 days to live, what would you do? How would you spend your time? Would you go on a trip or have one last drunken party? Buy a new car or go sky diving? Would you care to earn more money or win the lottery yet? OR - Would you spend that time deepening your relationship with the Lord and spending it with your family? Personally I think most of us would want to spend quality time with our family and good friends, and walk closer with the Lord than ever before. We would want to be 100% sure that we have been washed in the blood of the Lamb - the Lord Jesus and we are ready to meet the Lord.
A few years ago a friend of ours was diagnosed with cancer and was told he had only 3 months to live. He spent those last three months wisely preparing to leave this earth. He realized that in the end all that matters is your relationship with the Lord - are you saved? and ready to meet the Lord. And the second thing that has any real worth is your family and relationships with friends and coworkers etc. These things became clear to him as he would meditate on his early morning walks when sleep just was not possible. As his health deteriorated he prepared for his auction sale, met with the lawyer, and catching up one last time with many old friends. What would you or I do??
There is a sense of urgency here! If we are honest enough to admit that we would live differently if we knew our time was short here on earth, then it only makes sense that we make those changes today - even though we don't know how long we have here or when our days will end. Anyone of us could go to bed tonight and wake up on the "other side". We have no guarantee that we will be here tomorrow, next week or next year. Prepare today to meet the Lord. Money cannot save - only Jesus can save!  Come to Jesus Christ for salvation today!  Acts 4:12  Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
The Bible says in Hebrews 3: 12-15
12 Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.
13 But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
14 For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end;
15 While it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation.

Monday, 20 August 2012

Sermon Review - Friendship..

Sunday August 19, 2012 - Sermon Review - Friendships

The service began with singing several songs which included  "To the River, I am going, bringing sins I cannot bear" and also the song "Great is Thy Faithfulness".
This was followed by a children's feature encouraging children to pray when they wake up at night.
The focus of the service today was worshipping in Relationships using Hosea 12:6 as the basis for the message. Pastor Ben was speaking today and he started out by repeating the definition of  worship as our reponse to who God for who He is and all that He has done for us.
Hosea 12:6 says Therefore turn thou to thy God: keep mercy and judgment and wait on thy God continually. That is from the King James Bible.
Pastor Ben used the NIV version of Hosea 12:6 and it reads a bit different there - But you must return to your God; maintain love and justice, and wait for your God always
Here is what Pastor Ben said-
Turn back to God, Maintain Love and Justice.
Isaiah and Hosea were contemporaries and both warned that God was not pleased with how worship was being given. God detested the worship since the people had abandoned love and justice
Cling as a kitten clings - hang on to love and justice
Bring love into justice
Love and justice is about right living
Cling to both love and justice

Becoming Practical
Cling and hold fast to love
Love is fragile and can seem to disappear
Love is to risk ourselves - to let people in to see what we are thinking and feeling
Love is a risk and we can get hurt - our heart could get broken
The alternative to risking love is to build safety walls around ourselves and we end up alone
Many adults have no friends
We need to allow people to be vulnerable with us.
There is more to people than we can see on the outside
We need to encourage people to open up in our friendships, and allow them to be different
Allow people to share their opposing views in our friendships
Ask people questions
Allow them to change to become closer to the Lord.
Draw Closer to God
God wants to change us to the image of Christ.
Love is not about power

1Corinthians 13: 4-7
Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.

The service ended with singing.

Friday, 17 August 2012

Israel, Iran and the Psalm 83 War

We are constantly hearing in the news of the changes that are happening in the middle east. We wonder if the tension can get any tighter before everything comes to a head and an all out war takes place. We have seen dictators fall and the Muslim Brotherhood gaining power in many of these places. We see Israel preparing their people for war and Iran continually threatening to wipe Israel off the map. What does it all mean and where is it heading?
Many Bible prophecy experts are saying that we are witnessing the prophecy of the Bible being fulfilled right before our very eyes. They are saying that the falling of the dictators is a preparation for the Psalm 83 war to be fullfilled. Please read all of Psalm 83 here:
Keep not thou silence, O God: hold not thy peace, and be not still, O God.
2 For, lo, thine enemies make a tumult: and they that hate thee have lifted up the head.
3 They have taken crafty counsel against thy people, and consulted against thy hidden ones.
 4 They have said, Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance.
 5 For they have consulted together with one consent: they are confederate against thee:
 6 The tabernacles of Edom, and the Ishmaelites; of Moab, and the Hagarenes;
 7 Gebal, and Ammon, and Amalek; the Philistines with the inhabitants of Tyre;
 8 Assur also is joined with them: they have holpen the children of Lot. Selah.
 9 Do unto them as unto the Midianites; as to Sisera, as to Jabin, at the brook of Kison:
 10 Which perished at Endor: they became as dung for the earth.
 11 Make their nobles like Oreb, and like Zeeb: yea, all their princes as Zebah, and as Zalmunna:
 12 Who said, Let us take to ourselves the houses of God in possession.
 13 O my God, make them like a wheel; as the stubble before the wind.
 14 As the fire burneth a wood, and as the flame setteth the mountains on fire;
 15 So persecute them with thy tempest, and make them afraid with thy storm.
 16 Fill their faces with shame; that they may seek thy name, O Lord.
 17 Let them be confounded and troubled for ever; yea, let them be put to shame, and perish:
 18 That men may know that thou, whose name alone is Jehovah, art the most high over all the earth.

Notice verse 4 were it says exactly what Iran is saying very regularly-  Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance. Iran is saying those very words. I am no great prophecy expert but I would suggest that we lift up our eyes and watch what is on the horizon. Either Israel and Iran are bluffing or we are about to witness the group of countries (the confederate from verse 5) listed in Psalm 83 coming against Israel.  We can also see what the outcome of this war will be according to verses 17 and 18 Let them be confounded and troubled for ever; yea, let them be put to shame, and perish:
18 That men may know that thou, whose name alone is Jehovah, art the most high over all the earth.  In the end everyone will know that the Lord God Jehovah is the only One true God - the most high over all the earth.To explain some of what Psalm 83 is describing, I would like to post a few paragraphs from John McTernan's blog - www.defendproclaimthefaith.org
as he is pretty clear what he understands from Scripture. He says in his blog:
Israel is now publicly admitting what was so obvious; that the Muslim Brotherhood is trying to create a ring around Israel. This is the Psalm 83 and Obadiah war. Israel is now admitting what is happening. The key to watch is Jordan

The drumbeat for war in the Middle East is now non-stop. Israel is preparing for this war and all fronts. I have several articles to keep you on the cutting edge of what is happening.
This war is going to be much more bloody than most people can imagine. It will turn into an Islamic holy war to destroy Israel. The entire Muslim Middle East will be drawn in. In the end, Israel will be damaged but left standing while entire Arab nations are going to disappear along with Islam being shattered.

 It really does look like this Fall and into 2013 could turn into an incredible time of turmoil. If you are anchored in the Lord Jesus nothing will shake your faith. As crunch time approaches for war in the Middle East and the world economy, keep your spiritual eyes glued on Lord Jesus and His coming for the bride.
May the Holy God of Israel bless and protect you.
End of quotes from John McTernan
I would like to post a map of Israel and its neighbors just to get a picture in our minds some of the countries we are looking at.
John 14:6 says  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
At this time I would like to encourage everyone reading this blog post, regardless of the country you live or what religion you belong to, if you are a Muslim come to Jesus - He is the only way to be saved! - Come to Jesus for salvation today. It is better to be on the Jesus's winning team and we know without any doubt at all that Jesus wins!! For further information on the plan of salvation please click on my blog post titled "The Message of Salvation" from August 8, 2012

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Heroes of Faith - Billy Sunday

Who is Billy Sunday? He is one of the Heroes of Faith and in this post I will share some interesting things about his life as well as quotes.

Billy Sunday was born on November 19, 1862 in Ames Iowa. Sadly his father William Ashley Sunday died just three days after Billy was born due to pnemonia. Therefore Billy Sunday grew up without his father. Billy began to play baseball for the Chicago White Stockings at the age of 21 years. Things did not go so well as he struck out the first 13 times at bat. Three years later, Billy Sunday came to know the Lord in Chicago through the witnessing of a woman named Mrs Clarke.  At the age of 26 he married the love of his life - Helen Thompson and they had four children though only two survived.
Billy Sunday left his professional baseball career to become an evangelist. He held his first evangelistic service in Iowa in 1886 and he would continue this work for some 40 years. He would invite people to make a decision for Christ and as they came forward make that commitment they would also shake Mr Sunday's hand - they would walk up the "sawdust trail".  He consistantly preached against dancing, gambling and the use of alcohol - calling it "demon rum"  and warned people of the dangers of hell with fire and brimstone type preaching. He kept up with the news of the day hoping to see positive changes but he is quoted as saying "It's just like putting a new frame around an old picture-the picture is unchanged."
Billy Sunday passed away on November 6, 1935 after suffering a heart attack.  Only two weeks earlier, he had preached at the funeral service of a dear long time friend. It is estimated that he preached to 80,000,000 people during his life as an evangelist.
I would like to share twelve of Billy Sunday's notable quotes:
1) Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than going to a garage makes you an automobile
2) The backslider likes the preaching that wouldn't hit the side of a house, while the real disciple is delighted when the truth brings him to his knees.
3) The Bible will always be full of things you cannot understand, as long as you will not live according to those you can understand
4)The reason you don't like the Bible, you old sinner, is because it knows all about you.
5)  Listen, I'm against sin. I'll kick it as long as I've got a foot, I'll fight it as long as I've got a fist, I've butt it as long as I've got a head, and I'll bite it as long as I've got a tooth. And when I'm old, fistless, footless, and toothless, I'll gum it till I go home to glory and it goes home to perdition
6) One reason sin flourishes is that it is treated like a cream puff instead of a rattlesnake.
7)  Hell is the highest reward the devil can offer you for being a servant of his.
8) The rivers of America will run with blood filled to their banks before we will submit to them taking the Bible out of our schools
9) I believe that a long step toward public morality will have been taken when sins are called by their right names.
10) Temptation is the devil looking through the keyhole. Yielding is opening the door and inviting him in.
11) Try praising your wife, even if it does frighten her at first.
12) I believe the Bible is the word of God from cover to cover.

What a great inspiration it is to read about this hero of faith - Billy Sunday.

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Happy Birthday Sweetie!

Today is your birthday Sweetie! Happy Birthday to you! You've grown up so fast. I can hardly believe that you are already going into grade 8 at school. 

Some of your favorite things include: pizza, hamburgers at McDonald's,  chocolate cake, birthday parties, watching Veggie Tales, going to church, playing with your cat Binky, school, your friend Shelly, playing with bubbles, playing outside with home golf and basketball, going on trailer rides in summer and snowmobile rides in winter with family, the songs "When the Roll is Called Up Yonder", and "Trading my Sorrows" and many other praise songs.
I love you Sweetie, We belong to Jesus! God Bless you!
love from Mom

Monday, 13 August 2012

Miracles of God in our Lives!!

Psalm 106:8  Nevertheless he saved them for his name's sake, that he might make his mighty power to be known.
Many times as I have read my Bible, I have been wowed by the fact that God does things in order to make His great Name known. It is His will that we become familiar with how great and awesome He is, that He does mightly things for the glory of His Name. It pleases the Lord that we exalt Him in our daily life. He is active and present in our life everyday and we would see Him act if we would only want to live that close in relationship with Him.
Ezekiel 36:22 Therefore say unto the house of Israel, thus saith the Lord God; I do not this for your sakes, O house of Israel, but for mine holy name's sake, which ye have profaned among the heathen, whither ye went.
So the first reason that God actively works among us is to make His Great Name known but there is another reason that I would also like to mention. The second reason is that He acts on our behalf. He sees us in our situation and the need that we are in and He comes to our aid. We find ourselves in a situation and we see no relief or way to get out of our mess. And at just such a time, when we are at the end of ourselves, we find that the Lord has been waiting for us to get to the point that we will cry out to Him.
Psalm 76: 7-9 says  - You, Yourself, are to be feared;
And who may stand in Your presence
When once You are angry?
You caused judgment to be heard from heaven;
The earth feared and was still,
When God arose to judgment,
To deliver all the oppressed of the earth.

There are many stories in the Bible where God does great things that are humanly impossible. We can think of how the young boy David killed the giant Goliath. We think of Gideon and how he got victory with just 300 men in a battle against those much mightier or how God rained down bread (called manna) for the travelling Israelites. We can think of the stories of Samson or Esther - great Bible stories that show how God does what seems humanly impossible. Of course in the New Testament there are also the stories where Jesus changed water into wine, He healed people who were sick - the lepers, the crippled, those who could not speak and those who were possessed by demons, and others were raised from the dead. In many of these Bible stories I have mentioned, God was exalted and glorified and people were helped. These two concepts are found together quite frequently.
It would be encouraging to hear more testimonies today of how God met a need , a seemingly impossible situation turned by the direct touch of the Lord's hand. I invite you to share your stories in the comment section here. It would be glorifying to the Lord to tell of His great help and kindness to us.
A Couple of Stories from me: There would be many stories that I could tell but I will share two.
When my twin boys were about six months old ( they are 20 now so its been a few years), my younger twin developed croup. I can't tell you a lot about croup, but it is very frightening as the child struggles immensely, is very frightened and is almost unable to breathe as he gasps for air. My son was hospitalized and put into a contained crib tent where cool humid air was constantly being filtered into it. This was supposed to relieve the croup so that my son would be able to breathe until the virus passed. Days went by and there was no improvement to his condition. The doctors were at their wits end, not knowing anymore what to do to help my son. We invited our Pastor Al to come to the hospital to pray over our son. My husband stayed in the hospital that night by our son's side and as I drove back home to care for our other twin son, I just broke down and cried out to the Lord for His intervention. I still know exactly where I was on the highway when this happened. I went home and the very next day, the doctors decided to remove the humidity tent and see what would happen as nothing they had done so far had helped. As soon as the tent was removed from my son's crib, he began to breathe with ease - and he was ready to come home again after a very short time. I know for a fact that somehow, God healed my son when that humidity tent was removed. The Lord inspired the doctors to make that bold choice the very morning after our Pastor prayed and I had my moments of surrender on the highway. Praise the Lord for that healing!
The second story I will share happened just very recently. My husband and I have a very small farm here growing canola and wheat. It has been incredibley dry here all summer. We had frost, hail and a dust storm hit our crop as well as a real lack of rain.  The canola crop looked poor all summer and produced only half as much as we would expect on a normal year. No surprise there -But to our surprise when we combined the wheat, it was not a poor crop at all. The wheat produced what is a known as bumper crop - above the average of a good year. My husband was seriously shocked by the amount of grain he hauled off that field. It is a miracle from the Lord that in the midst of the drought, the hail, the frost etc, the crop was greater than what we see on a good crop year. Praise God for all that wheat but more importantly Praise God that He can make wheat grow without what we consider necessary for growth. He did it with His own Mighty Hand!!
That is just a taste of how I have seen the Lord work - there is so much more to share. As I said earlier, please feel free to share a story of how the Lord has worked in your life. God Bless.

Sunday Sermon - Worshipping Alone

Sunday Sermon Review - August 12, 2012  " Worshipping Alone"

This is a sermon review from my home church that I attend regulary.
The service began with singing several songs - "Pharoah Pharoah", and "How Deep the Father's Love for Us".
The worship leader came up and read Ephesians 3:14-21
This was followed by a two short videos on Worship - what it is and what it is not - again reminding us that it is not the entertainment by the music group that leads in the singing. The second video had young children explaining that to worship God by yourself you can pray, read the Bible and sing.

Pastor Frank came up to preach. The topic listed in the bulletin was entitled "Worship in Family" but Pastor Frank changed it to Worshipping Alone.

He began by reading Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Here is more of what Pastor Frank said:
You live your life in your head - that is in your mind. Our life consists of what we think about in our mind throughout the day. Our mind thoughts should be a continual awareness of God's presence.
Often times we spend most of our headspace either regretting the past or worrying about the future.
Instead of these regrets and worry, we need to learn to consider Scripture.
Phillipians 3:14  I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Regarding our future, the Bible tells us to not worry about tomorrow.
Matthew 6:34  Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.
Pastor Frank continued - Yesterday is dead and gone, tomorrow is out of sight.
We need to keep a continual awareness of the presence of God in our every moment and keep in converstaion with Him. He is the vine and we are the branches, so we need to keep connected with the vine.
John 15:5  “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
The time of our day that we spend in which God is not in our thoughts, we are living as athiests.
The question we should ask is not - did I surrender my life to Christ years ago?" but we should rather be asking - Am I living a surrendered life in this moment?
Practical Ways
- when the phone rings or while driving you come to a stop sign - quote Scripture.
-when you speak with another person, think about how much Jesus loves that person.
-with every breath, breathe in Jesus love and exhale compassion.
- use fridge magnets to remind yourself of Scripture verses.
The Battle is for your Mind
You are in charge of what is in your mind, in your thoughts.
"the dog you feed is the dog that grows bigger"
The closing song was " Mighty to Save".

Next Sunday the topic will be Worship in Relationships.
Note from me: I would just like to add a few thoughts of my own here. Pastor Frank spoke about the battle for our minds. It is important to remember to keep our eyes focused on the Lord Jesus and His coming for us - His bride. When we take our minds and thoughts off the pleasures and things of this world, and set our minds on Christ and His returning and our being with Him - we lose all interest in thinking lustful, worldly thoughts. Our interest are now with Christ and we long to please Him and to be with Him. The things of this earth ( even non sin type things) lose  their color and "grow strangely dim", just like the old song says.
Titus 2:13-14 says:
Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;
14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

Sunday, 12 August 2012

My son's Bannock...

Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

Today one of my sons taught me to make Bannock. My younger twin has been on staff working at Bible camp all of the summer so when he was home today, he decided to make bannock. He had made it once before so I knew it was very good. He learned how to make it from other staff that work at camp. It 's very easy to make and really is quite delicious. The taste resembles a baking powder biscuit. So I made up a pot of chilli to eat on along side of the bannock and that was our Sunday supper today.
Here is a picture of the pan of bannock that my son made:

Next is a picture of the pan of bannock that I made with him guiding me.

So here is the recipe for the bannock:

Sister Sparrow's Son's Bannock:
3 cups flour
2 Tablespoons of baking powder
1 tsp of salt.
Stir together in a medium sized bowl.
Now add 1/4 cup of oil
1 and 1/2 cups of lukewarm tap water
Mix well. Turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead for about 5 minutes.
Pat into greased cookie sheet. Prick with fork.
Bake at 350F for 15 - 20 minutes until golden brown.
Serve with butter or margarine and enjoy!!