great stories

ernest reading pose

Rev. E. Anderson

THE KNOCK AT MY DOOR

Taken from  Another Long Soak

by Claudia Leaman

At first I did ‘t listen. Finally I did. I could hardly believe what my older brother, Hal, was saying to me. His suggestion was ridiculous, absurd – he wanted me to get down on my knees and give my life to God! I was shocked and repelled. My brother had become a Jesus freak!

It was the last night of my weekend visit with him in Cambridge, where he was studying. We were sitting in his apartment, on the rollaway couch that served as my bed, discussing religion. He could not have chosen a touchier subject, for I had recently decided that I was an atheist. I was just eighteen and a few months earlier had started college, leaving home for the first time.

I tried to explain to Hal the way I felt. ‘Ever since I can remember,’ I told him, ‘I’ve gone to church and Sunday school just because it was the thing to do. But now that I’m in college, I realize that I never thought any of it out for myself. I can’t justify my old beliefs to myself or to the kids in the dorm. I think I’ve been an atheist all along.’

‘Barb,’ Hal said slowly, calling me by my family nickname, ‘God is still there. All you have to do is ask him into your life.’

I had noticed in Hal a new kind of strength and assurance, and I admired that – but then I had always admired Hal. Ever since I was seven and my father died, Hal had been special to me, helping me with my lessons, giving me books to read. Now it seemed that if I couldn’t trust Hal, there was no one I could trust. Hal kept telling me what he thought I should do. Finally, just to please him, I did the last thing I ever pictured doing on a visit to my brother. I went down on my knees and repeated the words he suggested: ‘God, please come into my life.’ Nothing happened. I only felt awkward and embarrassed. After a short while I got up. Hal embraced me and said good night. I was grateful that he didn’t ask me how I felt.

When he left the room I began to cry. I cried all night and most of the next day. Because I could no longer understand Hal. Because I was confused and alone.

The next time I saw my brother was a few months later at a family gathering. He made a point of talking to me alone. ‘How do you feel about accepting God into your life?’ he asked.

‘It may be all right for you,’ I blurted, ‘but not for me.’ Hal could see I didn’t want to be questioned about it.

For ten years we dropped the subject, and I tried to put the experience out of my mind. During that time I graduated from college and began my acting career. I fell back into my old, half-understood ways of occasionally going to church. But I never quite knew why or what I was looking for there.

Early in 1977 I found myself in a rehearsal room with the direc­tor and cast of Jesus Christ, Superstar. I had a role as one of Jesus’ fol­lowers, and we were preparing for a major production. Five months earlier I had played Sonya, also a follower of Christ, in Godspell.

When I got the role in Superstar, I promised myself that what had happened to me in Godspell wouldn’t happen again. Acting in that play, in a local Pennsylvania production, had been one of the most frustrating experiences of my life. Night after night I saw something happen in the theatre that I had never seen before – an audience no longer made up of strangers, but of friends, singing and rejoicing together. But although I felt their exhilaration, I was unable to share it — the gospel narratives that the play is built around just didn’t come alive for me.

Because acting was my whole world, I was willing to do anything to be a better actress – even if it meant going to the Bible to research my role for the first time, I really read the gospels carefully. Now, waiting backstage at the theatre, I thought I was thoroughly prepared for the scene we were about to rehearse.

The director, an enthusiastic man, gave us our directions:

Jesus has just been arrested. You run to the spot where he was where he was taken away. You look everywhere for him, unable to believe what has happened. It is though all your dreams have been shattered –all you had hoped for is gone.

As I began to play the scene, I felt a tremendous sadness rise and clutch my throat. Deeply moved, I burst into tears and allowed them to pour down my face. Everyone thought I was only acting. Afterward another member  of the cast came up to me and said, ‘How did you do it?’

I don’t know. I told her. And I really didn’t. It didn’t occur to me that I was acting out of my own deep feelings of loss, fear and loneliness, that the scene in the play was actually a scene from my life.

When the run of the play was over, I returned home to a routine that seemed emptier and more aimless than before. I spent some nights in front the television set wondering why my life had so little meaning.

One cold night in January, restless and unhappy, I opened the Bible. Io came upon  Revelation 3:20: ‘Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man will hear my voice, and open the door, I will sup with him, and he with me.’ I began to think that Christ had been knocking at the door for a long time, at least that long-ago night with Hal. Only God could know how to reach me through my desire to be a good actress, a desire that finally led me to the Bible.  to him. Suddenly, an overwhelmingly surge of longing and gratitude flooded through me. At last I knew that my life was complete, and that I was made whole.

About a year after playing in Superstar I saw Hal again at another family get-together. Over coffee, I told him about the changes that had entered my life along with Christ. For the first time I really feel I know what’s important. It’s not as if everything has been all roses, but when something disappointing happens – say I’m rejected for a part – I always have somewhere to turn. I’m never completely alone any more.’

Hal was silent for a while. Then he said, ‘Well, I’m not surprised. I knew you were put in those two plays for a reason.’

We ended that evening with thanksgiving for God’s hidden guidance, for each other and for the role that moved from the stage into my real life: a disciple of Christ.

falls

 

gospel nuggets

ernest - computor

Rev. E. Anderson

THE CHRIST OF CHRISTMAS

The Christmas season is a special time and a favourite time for many people in the world.  You probably have observed however, as I have, the efforts of many in our modern society to do away with the true meaning of Christmas.  Many do not even want to use the word “Christmas” to describe this holiday season.  At the time of this writing there is a dispute among public officials in Boston on whether their large public tree display should be called a ‘Christmas” tree or a “holiday” tree.  In addition, the writer has recently observed a large display of “Christmas cards” in a large department store.  Only a few of the large display of cards contained the word “Christmas”.  Even less had an appropriate Bible scripture verse.  Some, in schools and other places, are afraid to say “Merry Christmas” to others lest they might offend someone.  These things are all part of a larger agenda to do away with “The Christ of Christmas” and the God who created them. 

In this message we want to focus on the true meaning of Christmas by considering “The Christ of Christmas”.  The Christmas story is really about His coming into the world, the coming of God’s Saviour for mankind.  By way of outline we want to consider;

1. THE PROMISE OF THE SAVIOUR’S COMING

Back in Genesis, chapter 3, we read about the fall into sin of our first parents, Adam and Eve.  Because they wilfully sinned and disobeyed God, He pronounced judgment upon them and they were sent forth from the presence of God.  Their sin brought death and judgment upon them as well as all their posterity.  Because of the sin of Adam we have all been put into the category of sinners.  We are all born into this world possessed with a sinful nature that is at enmity with God.  This soon manifests itself in sinful thoughts, sinful words and sinful practices.  Sin is in the root of our nature and this will soon be seen by the fruit of sins in the life.  We read in, (Romans 5:12) “Wherefore, as by one man (Adam) sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned”.  “Sin” signifies missing the mark, and denotes a failure on the part of man to fulfill the purpose that God had for man in his creation.  Sin is universal because it says in, (Romans 3:23) “ALL have sinned and come short of the glory of God”.  Sin is deadly because it says in, (Romans 6:23) “The wages of sin is death”.  William McDonald said, “The mortuary, the hearse, the graveyard mock our complacent attitude of permanent residence here.  Not a day passes without its reminder that “the crib and the coffin are carved from the self-same tree”.  It says in, (Hebrews 9:27) “It is appointed unto men once to die, but AFTER THIS the judgment”.  Each day 150,000 people pass into eternity – 55 million per year.  Many hope that death is the end.  But, God says in His Word, THERE IS AN AFTER LIFE AND THEN JUDGMENT.  Dear reader, are your sins forgiven?  Have You ever confessed that you are a sinner in need of God’s salvation?  Have you repented of your sins, which means to change your mind and to take sides with God against yourself?  It is a wise person indeed who has faced the question of his personal guilt before God and cried out to God like the publican in,(Luke 18:13)”God be merciful to me a sinner”.  God, in knowing the devastating affects of sin, promised a Saviour. When God sent His Son into the world He proved and demonstrated His love for a world of sinners lost.  We know this is true because it says in, (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”.  But, why would He come?  

2. THE PURPOSE OF THE SAVIOUR’S COMING

When the Lord Jesus Christ came into the world the angel announced, (Luke 2:10) “I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a SAVIOR, which is Christ the Lord”.  In Matthew’s gospel the angel said to Joseph, concerning Mary’s first born son, (Matthew 1:21) “Thou shalt call his name Jesus: for He shall SAVE His people from their sins”.  The name “Jesus” means “SAVIOR”.  The apostle Paul tells us very directly of “THE PURPOSE OF THE SAVIOR’S COMING”. He said in, (1 Timothy 1:15) “Christ Jesus came into the world to SAVE sinner’s”.  Dear reader, are YOU saved?  Is Jesus Christ YOUR Lord and Savior?  Was there ever a time in your life’s experience when YOU put your faith and trust in Him and received Him as YOUR lord and Saviour?  

3. THE PASSION AS THE RESULT OF THE SAVIOR COMING

We read concerning the Lord Jesus Christ in, (Acts 1:3) “He showed himself alive after his PASSION by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days’.  The word “passion” is taken from the Greek word “pascho” which means “to suffer”.  It refers to the suffering and death of Christ at Calvary.  The Saviour’s death on the cross was a voluntary death.  He said in, (John 10:17, 18) “Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again.  No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself.  I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father”.  The Saviour’s death on the cross was a vicarious death because, (1 Corinthians 15:3) ‘Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures”.  He suffered at the hands of sinful man.  The Saviour was crucified.  Nails pierced His hands and feet.  He hung upon the cross for three hours while He was mocked and ridiculed.  Then, He suffered at the hands of a holy God.  We read in, (Matthew 27:45) “Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour”.  When mid day was turned to midnight the wrath and judgment of a holy God was poured out upon the Saviour.  He was bearing our sins in His own body on the tree.  He was (Isaiah 53:4) “Stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted”.  Dear reader, have YOU ever realized that when Jesus Christ died on the cross, He died for YOUR sins personally? 

4. THE POWER DEMONSTRATED AT THE SAVIOUR’S COMING

Death had no claim upon the Saviour for He is the holy, spotless, sinless Son of God.  The testimony of the apostles was. “He knew no sin”, “He did no sin”, “In Him is no sin”.  Because He is the Son of God “He could not sin”.  He was the “lamb of God”, without blemish and without spot”.  (1 Peter 1:19).  “THE POWER DEMONSTRATED AT THE SAVIOR’S COMING” is evident by His resurrection out from among the dead and His ascension into Heaven.  (1 Corinthians 15:3, 4) “Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures, He was buried, He rose again the third day according to the scriptures”. We read in, (Acts 1:9-11) “While they beheld, He (Jesus) was taken up; and a cloud received Him out of their sight”.  “They looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up”.  “This same Jesus, who is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen Him go into heaven”.  The Saviour is not on the cross.  He is not in the tomb.  He is now seated at the right hand of God.  He said in, (Revelation 1:18) “I am He that liveth, and was dead: and, behold, I am alive for evermore”.  Dear reader, do you believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ? You can not be saved unless you believe.  It says in, (Romans 10:9, 10) “If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus (Jesus as Lord) and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved”.  “For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation”.  Have YOU openly confessed that Jesus Christ is YOUR Lord and Saviour?  The resurrection of Christ from among the dead and His ascension into heaven, signify God’s acceptance of His work on the cross.

5. THE PREACHING OF THE SAVIOUR’S COMING

It was an angelic visitor that preached the first gospel message when he said in, (Luke 2:10, 11) “Behold I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord”.  A heavenly messenger spoke a heavenly message.  The message was good news that would bring great joy.  It was the announcement of the greatest event ever recorded in the history of mankind.  THERE IS BORN A SAVIOR.  We are told in, (Romans 1:16) “The gospel of Christ is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth”.  Dear reader, do YOU believe the gospel message?  It says in, (1 Corinthians 1:18) ‘For the preaching (the Word) of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God”.  Notice, there are only two classes of people, “those who are perishing” and “those who are being saved”.  WHICH CLASS ARE YOU IN?  There are only two reactions to the message.  To one class the message is foolish, silly, stupid and absurd.  To the other class, the message is the power of God to save them.  WHICH CLASS DESCRIBES YOU?  

Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God”.  Have YOU been reconciled to God?  The estrangement is on your part.  It says in, (Isaiah 59:20 “Your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid His face from you, that He will not hear”. God has done everything required for your salvation when, “He spared not His own Son but delivered Him up for us all”.  (Romans 8:32).  This Christmas season, which is a time of giving and receiving, would be a good time for you to receive God’s gift to YOU.  (Romans 6:23) “The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord”.  You must come to Him in faith and receive Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.  It says in, (John 3:36) “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him”.   Are YOU a believer or a non-believer in “THE CHRIST OF CHRISTMAS”?  You are travelling the “HIGHWAY OF LIFE”, passing through time into eternity. Now that you have read this message, you have come to “THE CROSSROADS”.  Which way will you go?  Please give this matter your most serious attention.  YOUR ETERNAL DESTINY DEPENDS ON YOUR DECISION.  Remember that “no decision” IS a decision.

orange tree

 

 

a time to laugh

ernest kitchen

Rev. E. Anderson

USHER FUNNY

Six-year-old Angie and her four-year-old brother Joel were sitting together in church. Joel giggled, sang, and talked out loud.

Finally, his big sister had had enough. “You’re not supposed to talk out loud in church.”

“Why? Who’s going to stop me?” Joel asked.

Angie pointed to the back of the church and said, “See those two men standing by the door? They’re hushers.”

DOCTOR FUNNY

Doctor: “I see you’re over a month late for your appointment. Don’t you know that nervous disorders require prompt and regular attention? What’s your excuse?”

Patient: “I was just following your orders, Doc.”

Doctor: “Following my orders? What are you talking about? I gave you no such order.”

Patient: “You told me to avoid people who irritate me.”

A TEETH FUNNY

A little old couple walked slowly into McDonalds one cold winter evening. They looked out of place among the young families and young couples eating there that night.

Some of the customers looked admiringly at them. You could tell what the admirers were thinking. “Look, there is a couple who has been through a lot together, probably for 60 years or more!”

The little old man walked right up to the cash register, placed his order with no hesitation and then paid for their meal. The couple took a table near the back wall and started taking food off the tray. There was one hamburger, one order of French fries and one drink.

The little old man unwrapped the plain hamburger and carefully cut it in half. He placed one half in front of his wife. Then he carefully counted out the French fries, divided them in two piles and neatly placed one pile in front of his wife.

He took a sip of the drink, his wife took a sip and then set the cup down between them.

As the man began to eat his few bites of hamburger the crowd began to get restless. Again you could tell what they were thinking. “That poor old couple. All they can afford is one meal for the two of them.”

As the man began to eat his French fries one young man stood and came over to the old couple’s table. He politely offered to buy another meal for the old couple. The old man replied that they were just fine. They were used to sharing everything.

Then the crowd noticed that the little old lady hadn’t eaten a bite. She just sat there watching her husband eat, occasionally taking turns sipping the drink. Again the young man came over and begged them to let him buy them something to eat. This time the lady explained that no, they were used to sharing everything.

As the little old man finished eating and began wiping his face neatly with a napkin the young man could stand it no longer. Again he came over to their table and offered to buy some food. After being politely refused again he finally asked a question of the little old lady.

“Ma’am, why aren’t you eating? You said that you share everything. What is it that you are waiting for?”

She answered… “the teeth”.

gate

 

 

focus

ernest reading pose

Rev. E. Anderson

GUARDING YOUR HEART

“Listen, my son, and be wise, and keep your heart on the right path” –  Proverbs 23:19

The workplace is fraught with obstacles that can knock our hearts off the right path.

There are opportunities to covet our co-workers’ positions and envy their possessions. There are opportunities to flirt with or engage in sexual immorality. There are opportunities to fudge numbers, cut corners, and hide the truth from vendors or clients. There are opportunities to gossip, belittle our colleagues, and stab our co-workers in the back. And the list goes on. So how do we keep ourselves from falling prey to any of these temptations?

By guarding our hearts.

Charles Swindoll puts it this way: “The quest for character requires that certain things be kept in the heart as well as kept from the heart. An unguarded heart spells disaster. A well-guarded heart means survival.”14

It’s not difficult to determine what to keep out of our hearts—we can start by not lingering on any of the temptations listed above. But what do we have to keep in our hearts if we want to survive? Philippians 4:8 holds a key: “Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”

How well are you guarding your heart? Are you taking intentional steps to avoid the danger zones? Are you staying out of places that might invite you to succumb to temptation? Are you actively filling your mind with Scripture on a daily basis? Are you making it a habit to focus on things that are true, lovely, and pure? Your answers will determine the kind of protection your heart is getting.

lane

christian testimony

susieflashmanjarvis

Susie Flashman

I HELD A GUN TO MY HEAD

Ex-model: was saved drugs hell

A FORMER topless model revealed hot heroin nearly killed her – before Jesui saved her.

Susie Flashman Jarvis was a Page 3 girl for popular red-top tabloids. She was a well-known model in magazines and TV but became hooked on heroin.

But life changed for Susie when she picked up the Bible and started to read the Psalms.

She said: “I started losing work and I was going from relationship to re­lationship, becoming more and more promiscuous.

LOVE

“I wasn’t a prostitute, as such, but I was basically- giving my body away for drugs. I just couldn’t come off them. I tried for a long time, but I was unsuc­cessful – until God saved me.

“At first I thought I had to pay God back for everything I’d done, but we can never pay him back. He just says: ‘Hove you because I love you.'”

Susie has written a book ‘Potholes and Belly-flops’ about her life as a model and conversion to Christ.

plant

 

minor prophets

ernest - computorRev. E. Anderson

NO ESCAPE

Jonah 1

This is a very intriguing and instructive story recorded in God’s Word. It reveals the Lord’s dealings with a man in order to deal with a pagan and wicked city. In both cases it is to be observed that the Lord was most gracious. For Jonah there was to be no escape from fulfilling the divine call and his important destiny. Jonah was the man and messenger who was on the run and became a fugitive. Up to this point in time he must have been a prophet to his own people but then the Lord redirects his call and ministry. And he doesn’t like or favour it and so seeks an escape route. Although he tried to escape on a number of fronts yet there was to be no escape.

1/. THERE WAS TO BE NO ESCAPE FROM PAYING HIS OWN FARE -1:3

This was not God’s way, will and choice, so he had to foot the bill. His expenses were not covered by this kind of action. He thought it was cheaper doing what he wanted rather than doing God’s plan. But it became in the first instance a financing of his own mission.

2/. THERE WAS TO BE NO ESCAPE FROM THE STORM -1:4

No sooner is he en-route and out to sea and feeling some-what comfortable, the sea lets loose its ferocity. He finds that wind and wave combine together in violent protest to the prophet’s decision and action. He is not going to get away so easily from his moral and spiritual responsibility. They rise in testimony against what he is doing and so all is threatened by his rebellion.

3/. THERE WAS TO BE NO ESCAPE FROM THE MARINERS AND THE CASTING OF THE LOTS -1: 6-14

He now discovers that the captain and sailors are now in no mood to tolerate what is occurring. They sense that this unusual storm has some significant reason for its occurrence. For this to happen, somebody is responsible. To stir up the wrath of the gods means something existed amongst them that needed sorting out. The seeming quiet trip is turning out to be horrendous, a horrible nightmare. The truth is made known and there is no escape for Jonah amidst the seeming godless.

4/. THERE WAS TO BE NO ESCAPE FROM BEING THROWN OVERBOARD -1:15,16

He now has to be cast to the mercy of the sea away from the security of the boat. He is now himself in real jeopardy. And when all is suddenly quieted he must have been aware of the gravity of his sin. But he is alone in the great waters.

5/. THERE WAS TO BE NO ESCAPE FROM BEING SWALLOWED BY THE FISH-1:17

He must have been somewhat shocked and surprised to find this big fish waiting to take him on board. There is no way of escaping the Lord. He’s in charge!

tree

 

 

 

pastor’s weekly thought

ianwilliams Rev. Ian Williams

MY CUP OVERFLOWS!

Once again I am reminded that God is generous in all He does and He equips us to live in the abundance of the ‘overflow’.

Overflow is defined by the dictionary in the following ways;
· to flow over the bounds
· to be abundant
· to flow over the top of
· to extend beyond the borders
· to have in great measure.

It’s easy to live life in “not/just enough” instead of living life in the “overflow”. The Children of Israel are a good example of this. They lived as slaves in Egypt, walking around the desert for forty years having just enough – surviving on manna and quail until they took possession of Canaan, the promised land. Then they experienced having “more than enough”, in other words “overflow”!

I want to encourage you:
· not to be enslaved to your past and live with “not enough”
· not to settle in your walk and live on “just enough” BUT TO:
· live in the promise and know what it is to have ‘more than enough’ – overflow!

David could say that his cup overflowed – begin to pray and believe that we will also live in the overflow of God’s Blessing!

scene

womens’ page

joycemeyer

Joyce Meyer

YOU HAVE GOT TO HAVE A DREAM

‘What do you want out of life?’ asks world renowned speaker Joyce Meyer, in a brilliant new column for iBelieve

Do you have a dream for I your life, your children, your finances or your marriage? Is there something you are hoping for – an idea, a goal, a plan or vision? Whatever it is that you want, what is it going to take to reach it?

We need to be reaching towards our dreams all the time because God didn’t create us to be static. So if you’ve got your life in park, you need to get it in gear and start moving towards the dreams God has put in your heart.

The things you want are not going to just fall into your lap. You are going to have to reach out and grab them.

You’re going to have to get a holy determination in you that says, “If anyone can have the life God wants them to have, then it’s going to be me!” But you need to remember that you’re probably not going to get there overnight, so it’s important to find the balance between being content and striving toward those desires.

Paul said he learned to be content in all situations. “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situa­tion, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want (Philip-plans 4:12). He never got upset about where he was, but at the same time, he continued to look forward to what God had in store for him down the road.

I was good at looking forward. God gave me a big dream for this ministry, but at the time, I didn’t fully understand the contentment part Paul was talking about -enjoying where you are until you get to where you’re going. So I spent a lot of years allowing the dream God gave me to torment me, instead of enjoying the journey. Overtime I discovered that while it’s important to keep your God-given dreams in front of you, you also have to learn to be content so you won’t be miserable on the way to the fulfilment of your dreams.

“Maybe it’s time for you to make a new commitment today to go after your dreams and stir up your faith”.

At the same time, we should never al­low contentment to make us so comfort­able that we forget about the vision. God wants you to dream. He wants you to plan. He doesn’t want the demands and routines of life or things like fear to keep you from moving forward in life. So when those things come, we have to be ready to rise up against them.

Even something as simple as waking up every morning and saying, “Something good is going to happen to me today,” can put fear and other distractions in their place.

Proverbs 18:21 says our words have the power of life or death in them, so we need to focus our words on proclaiming the promises of God over our lives. When you connect spiritually with God by proclaiming his promises, that’s when your dreams start being fulfilled.

You can be like Abraham and Sarah if you’ll just believe and press toward God’s best for you.

They were old and having a child seemed impossible, but God gave Abraham a vision that he would be the father of many nations. Because Abraham believed God, that vision was fulfilled through Isaac and the many generations that followed.

If you have a dream that seems impossible, start saying, “I will have everything God says I can have. I will do everything God says I can do. I will be everything God says I can be.” Because with God, all things are possible!

Maybe it’s time for you to make a new commitment today to start going after your dreams. I encourage you to decide right now to stir up your faith, shake off any fear, remember who you are in Christ, and make a decision to trust God to do the impossible every day you get out of bed.

Then you’ll enjoy the journey, one day at a time, until you reach the fulfilment of your dreams!

scene 1

 

wisdom’s ways

ernest reading pose

Rev. E. Anderson

THE LADY OF THE LOAF

“She …. eateth not the bread of idleness” – Proverbs 31:25-27

Because she denies herself of “the bread of idleness”, her household benefits from the “bread of industry”, the family of such a woman will never starve for want of food; she is not only the bread-baker, she is the bread-winner. She manages the house so well that her husband is free to mingle and make his mark with “the elders in the gate”, that is, the important town officials. Notice five qualities of this “virtuous woman”.

Regard her DIGNITY. “Strength and honour are her clothing”, that is she is a pillar of the household, upholding all its affairs with her strength of character. Not only so, she does this with a dignity that calls for the esteem of all who know her.

Regard her DESTINY.She shall rejoice in time to come”. Rejoice that her industry and effort has set the house on a firm economical foundation. Rejoice that she has given her children the best of beginnings. They make their way in the world because she has moulded their characters in the home. Rejoice in that she can look back with complacency on a life well-lived, a home well-kept, a husband well-content, and a reward well-earned.

Regard her DISCRETION. She guides her household with good sense. “In her tongue is the law of kindness”. Yes, there is “law”, for someone must give orders and maintain discipline in the home; but it is done with “kindness”. She is firm but compelling. She gives instructions, but not in a domineering tone of voice. She is wise, but winsome; strong, but tender.

Regard her DIRECTION. “She looketh well to the ways of her household”. She not only plans the day’s routine, selects the menus and orders the duties, she sees that her wishes are duly carried out. There is nothing slipshod about her management.

Regard her DILIGENCE. She disdains “the bread of idleness”, being always well occupied with her many commitments. She derives her energy from a strong sense of loving care, and from her devotion to the ideals of womanhood implanted in her by the fear of God, a fear lest she should fall short of what the Lord would have her be and do. She is a fulfilled woman because she fulfils the will of her Creator.

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sermon s of note

ernes1

Rev. E. Anderson

OUTSTANDINGLY BLESSED

Readings  Job 1: 1-3; 42:10; 3 John 2

Introduction

One of the great things of and in life is to truly know what it is to be fully blessed by the Lord; to be counted as one of His blessed ones. It is a choice and glorious knowledge to be aware of, the fact that you have been singled-out to be significantly blessed by the divine Blesser, the Blessed One. It is important to know by revelation that this is to be your experience, and it is fantastic when the revelation turns to realisation – prayers evolving into realities.

God is in the order of blessing and His purpose at the outset with mankind and throughout his dealings with him was to see him truly blessed – Genesis 1: 25, 26. Nothing has changed in this respect and it become most fully apparent in the Gospel of Christ.

But His objective is not to simply bless, which is a good thing, but to be ‘outstandingly blessed’ – not a little but a lot – not in a minor but major manner – Genesis 12: 3,4; Hebrews 6: 13 ‘in blessing I will bless you’.

Illustration   Smith Wigglesworth – Double blessing. He used to ask for Christians in his meetings to put up two hands if they were desirous of double blessing

It is noteworthy how many characters in the Bible knew the experience:

1/. ADAM WAS THE FIRST ONE TO TASTE IN LARGE DEGREE BEFORE HIS FALL FROM FAVOUR

What boundless, infinite blessings were his at the outset before he forfeited the lot by his notable transgression. Over quite a period he and his wife were the recipients of the extreme goodness of the Lord. It was heaped on him. It was so full and overflowing that Satan was envious/jealous. He did not like what he saw and worked to spoil the situation. Adam lost his God and blessed state.

2/. ABRAHAM WAS CHOSEN IN A PAGAN ENVIRONMENT TO EVENTUALLY MIRROR WHAT IT WAS TO BE OUTSTANDINGLY BLESSED

His beginnings and history may not have been all that one desired, but God saw an individual who he could move on and in a remarkable way. He would make the right responses. Three things mark him out as a candidate: love, faith and obedience. Happy to reply in the affirmative and see God give him identity, significance, destiny and fulfilment. A person of enormous influence, impress history.

3/. JACOB WAS A MAN WHO SOUGHT IT IN A WRONG WAY BUT KNEW ITS IMPORTANCE AND FINALLY SECURED IT

He was to discover it by a costly route. He was conscious of the worth and wealth of the birthright and bartered for it – Genesis 25: 29-34, and then through guile sought for the blessing – Genesis 27. His time with Laban and relatives was painful and thro’ further subterfuge and deceit outwitted them as he enriched himself. He then had an encounter with God which changed him and his future – Genesis 32: 322-32. But he is blessed to see his son exalted – blessed Pharaoh, his sons, Joseph – Genesis 47: 10; 48 & 49.

4/. JOSEPH WAS A PERSON SET TO KNOW FROM EARLIEST DAYS THAT HE WAS TO BE OUTSTANDINGLY BLESSED

He was the kind of individual who had a hold of God when young and a person whom God had hold of. He sensed through dream and revelation that there was something up front that was worth pursuing even though it was to prove costly. He wasn’t going to find it easy at home or when he was made a slave in Potiphar’s household, and when he became prisoner and prime minister. There were problems and crises etc., to be encountered and successfully negotiated, but he made it – Genesis 49: 22-26.

5/. RUTH WAS A WOMAN WHO MOVED OUT OF POVERTY INTO A BOUNTIFUL STATE – Ruth 1-4

Four chapters are designated to this outstanding female who made the Biblical history book. It occurred she purposed to be a blessing and to trust God and was amply rewarded. She is blessed with a good husband, child, progeny of note to Israel and the world – Ruth 4: 13-21

CONCLUSION

Many more could be referred to and highlighted: Moses, Joshua, Caleb, David, Jabez, Elisha, Peter etc. The challenge is  to be more than ordinary and such can only be in and thro’ God and his blessing. He wills to bless you so that you will inspire others to a path of fullness of blessing.

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