Month: January 2022

News Of The Day – January 13th

Ann Graham Lotz Asking For Prayers For her Daughter

The granddaughter of Billy Graham is in hospital after having two back-to-back heart attacks. Anne Graham Lotz, the daughter of the late evangelist Billy Graham, is asking people to pray. Lotz’s daughter Rachel-Ruth was rushed to the hospital on Saturday. “She was rushed to the hospital on Saturday night with a heart attack, followed by a catheterization,” says Lotz on Tuesday with a Facebook post. “Sunday afternoon, she had a second heart attack, followed by another catheterization.”  According to Lotz, the doctors do not know what caused the heart attacks. Read more about Rachel-Ruth’s struggle here.

 

Board’s Approval Of After School Satan Club For Elementary Students Raising Eyebrows

Parents at an Illinois elementary school are expressing concern after the local school board approved a new extracurricular club for children that will be led by members of The Satanic Temple and held in school facilities. the so-called “After School Satan Club” was approved by the Moline-Coal Valley School District Board of Education.  The club will hold meetings at Jane Addams Elementary in Moline, Illinois, beginning immediately after school. It is open to children in first through fifth grade, although students first need permission from a parent. The school district said it had a legal obligation to approve the club, just as it approved an evangelistic Good News Club. Read more about the club here.

 

U.S. Religious Donations Rebound But Still At All Time Low

Donations to charities rebounded in 2021 among U.S. adults, although donations to religious organizations remained at an all-time low, according to a new Gallup survey. Eighty-one percent of American adults say they donated money to a charitable cause in 2021 – a major rebound from a poll in 2020 that found a record-low 73 percent answering that way. Donations to religious organizations, though, did not experience an increase, with only 44 percent of Americans – the same percentage as 2020 – saying they donated to a faith-based organization. It’s the lowest percentage in the history of Gallup, which began asking the question in 200. Read more about the poll here.

 

Christian Singer Natalie Grant Wows Audience With Rendition Of National Anthem

Acclaimed singer Natalie Grant’s rendition of the National Anthem during Monday’s college football championship game led to widespread acclamation. The nine-time Grammy-nominated Christian singer delivered a powerful rendition of The Star-Spangled Banner before the national championship game in Indianapolis between Georgia and Alabama that immediately drew applause from sports and non-sports fans alike. Grant stated, “Beyond grateful for the opportunity. Last words in my mind before the first note, ‘Jesus, be glorified.’” Read more about her performance here.

 

 

January 13th – Matthew 6:25

Matthew 6:25

For the past two hears, humanity has been involved in the turmoil of the pandemic. And the anxiety it’s caused has taken its toll in the lives of so many people! But we cannot let it oppress us nor enslave us! For there is a solution. And in God’s Word, Jesus taught His followers, who were also dealing with oppression, the steps to follow. Yes we should stop being worried, uneasy, and distracted. You might say it is easier said than done, but when you realize WHO you are putting your trust in, than you can freely rest on Him and put ALL your confidence in your Heavenly Father!

When we are worried and anxious about the material things of life we behave like pagans. Like idol worshippers, we set our trust on our own efforts and set out hearts on our needs. But our Heavenly Father knows exactly what we need, and in the exact time He will provide. But we need to trust Him enough to let go. What is distracting you from receiving the blessings of His Provision for each aspect of your life? Blessings, Mari

January 12th – Psalm 25:5

Psalm 25:5

For some, anxiety is brought on by worrying about the future or how future events will unfold. For Christians, we know that our eternal future is secured because Jesus settled that on the cross long ago. He is the God of our salvation. Each moment that passes between today and our last physical breath will be a journey that shapes our preparation for Heaven and our influence on this Earth.

No two lives will be the same and there are many obstacles and deceptions that the enemy will place in our path to make us falter, stumble and lose our way. The Psalmist knew that it was foolish to try and navigate life on his own. He knew that it was best to trust in the guidance of God. God wants us to be teachable in all of the moments and events that make up our lives. He wants to help us recognize truth and avoid deception. 

God also wants us to trust His timing. That can be hard for those of us who get anxious when things seem chaotic and we want to rush in to “fix” or handle a situation on our own. So many times I have been amazed to discover that when I place something in God’s hands and relinquish the details and outcomes to Him, He  gives me peace and He shows me His mighty hand at work. Sometimes He works to change the circumstances and sometimes He works within those circumstances to change me.  Either way, I am learning as the Psalmist that it’s always best to wait for the Lord….Becky

News Of The Day – January 11th

Dave Ramsey Under Fire For Saying Raising Rent And Displacing Family Not Un-Christian 

Dave Ramsey, personal finance radio host and evangelical Christian, was the target of social media criticism Saturday, as outraged individuals slammed him for saying that if tenants at his residential properties are displaced because he raised rental rates to meet market price, it does not make him “a bad Christian.” Ramsey stated, “I own rental property, single family homes, among many other properties that we own. And if I raised my rent to be market rate that does not make me a bad Christian. I did not displace the person out of that house if they can no longer afford it.” Read more about his comments here.

 

Bishop TD Jakes Makes Potter House Permanently Virtual Due To Covid

TD Jakes, bishop of the megachurch The Potter’s House, has made the decision to go virtual permanently. Citing financial pressures due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, The Potter’s House of Denver has decided to sell its 137,000-square-foot building and take its worship and other services to the community completely online. The megachurch had been at the same location for 32 years. First known as the Heritage Christian Center, it transformed into The Potter’s House of Denver in 2010 with thousands of members assembling for worship services every week. Read more about the move here. 

 

Ex Youth Pastor Sentenced To 20 Years For Molesting Boys 

A former Goshen youth leader is going to prison for admittedly molesting several young boys between the ages of 11 and 13 during the better half of the last decade. Scott Christner is starting a 20-year prison sentence on Wednesday, which is the most time he could spend behind bars because of the terms of his plea deal. However, the judge ordered a 21-year suspended sentence that could land him back in prison if he violates probation within the 10 years following his prison term. “Christner was a trusted member of the church and was considered family,” a parent of a victim was quoted as saying. Read more about the sentence here. 

 

Baby Donkey Named Betty White To Honor Her Support For Animal Sanctuary 

For years, television star Betty White had donated to the Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue in San Angelo, Texas. Now, upon her death on December 31 at the age of 99, the animal sanctuary has introduced an adorable baby donkey as her namesake. “This beautiful little jennet was born on Christmas Day but we were unable to come up with the perfect name until New Year’s Eve,” the rescue donkey group wrote on Facebook. Ms. White has supported the group since 2006, and to honor her memory, Peaceful Valley is also naming their newly constructed nursery in her honor. Read more about this precious little donkey here. 

 

 

 

January 11th – 1 chronicles 16:34

1 Chronicles 16:34

Did you know there is great power found in a grateful heart? It’s true, and they have research to prove it! “Scientific studies have proven gratitude increases neural modulation in the brain, in the prefrontal cortex, which regulates negative emotions. It also activates dopamine, the neurotransmitter responsible for making you feel good.” That’s scientific talk that basically states that the results of maintaining an attitude of gratitude is instant happiness that will prompt you to continue to giving thanks.

A good friend of mine once confessed that she had been hospitalized due to a nervous breakdown and what helped her most to recover was reading her Bible and writing down 12 things she was thankful for in a journal each day- a practice she still swears by and practices today!

Gratitude also curbs other symptoms of anxiety, helping us to deal with the disorder more effectively according to a study published in the National Center for Biotechnology Information in the United States.

  • It can reduce Insomnia
  • Reduces stress hormones in the body
  • And can positively impact bodily functions, memory, and emotions.

 BUT more importantly, giving thanks is something that each one of us are commanded to practice on a daily basis; anxiety, or no anxiety. (Phil. 4:6-7Col. 3:151 Thes. 5:16-18, and many others)

So, How Can We Best Practice Maintaining an Attitude of Gratitude? 

(These are just a few suggestions and if you have any other proven habits, I hope you’ll share them with us as well)

1.) Keep a Journal

Write down all that is causing any anxiety, sadness, fear, etc. And then find at least 3 things to be thankful for right now. Even if it’s, ‘I’m thankful I woke up and I’m still breathing!’

2.)  Stop to Meditate

“Finally, brothers and sisters, 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.” – Phil. 4:8

 Focus on all the good things in your life and start thanking God for each. You’ll eventually become a thankful person by nature.

3.) Share Your Gratitude with Others 

This may seem silly, but it goes a long way towards practicing gratitude.

Writing down your thoughts,  dwelling on the positives and then sharing your positive thoughts with God and others will go along way to develop an attitude of gratitude and squelch all those anxious thoughts that try to take over.

Blessings,

sue

January 10th – James 4:8

James 4:8

What if I told you that fear is a sin? How? Because fear stems from pride. And pride submits to no one, thinking we ourselves know best. It’s the same with fear. When we let fear dictate our actions, we’re telling God we trust more in that fear than in His promises. So how do we knock fear off the throne in our lives? In writing his letter to the Jews, James gives us the tools. Humility and faith. Humility is never an easy pill to swallow. Because admitting we are wrong, being vulnerable and submitting is hard. But when we come to God with a truly humble heart, He welcomes us with open arms, inviting us to draw near to Him. To in faith, leave our fear at the door and safely shelter in His mighty fortress. An impenetrable fortress of power, mercy, and wisdom. So draw near to Him, and lay your fears at the feet of Jesus. Give Him your sorrows, worries, tears, and anxiety. Receive His healing of your heart and mind, and walk in the Lord’s freedom!

 

 

January 9th – Hebrews 13:6

Hebrews 13:6

Too many times we put our confidence in the wrong things. And sadly, faith misplaced in possessions and people always leads to disappointment. In turn, disappointment leads to fear and anxiety. True peace can only be found through faith in God to meet all of our needs. And not just physical needs, but our need for security, safety, protection, and peace. I heard it said that fearless love never comes without facing fearful situations. And let’s face it, this world is filled with fearful situations. But God gives us His promise to never leave our side, no matter who or what we encounter. And when we put our faith in Him alone, we stand on the unshakable foundation of the Creator and Ruler of all things. So whatever the circumstance, or who tries to hurt us, we know we have nothing to fear. For with God as our helper, we too can confidently declare, “What will man do to me?”

January 8th – Deuteronomy 31:6

Deuteronomy 31:6

I love the quote by Max Lucado which says, “The presence of fear does not mean you have no faith. Fear visits everyone. But make your fear a visitor and not a resident.” Even though fear is a part of life, not all fear is bad. For instance, there is the healthy fear that helps keep us from harm. And lets not forget the fear of the Lord which is the “beginning of knowledge” (Prov. 1:7) But far too often the fear that fills us, keeps us stuck and under the thumb of the Enemy. Think of Joshua. Taking over leadership of Israel was quite a task. But Moses gave him some sage advice. “Be strong and courageous. The Lord is the one who goes ahead of you. He will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.” (Deut. 31:6,8) By applying these words to our own lives, we can break the grip of fear and its hold over our minds and hearts. If you are struggling, give it all to God. Open your heart to His love and your ears to His words as He says to you His precious child, “Fear not, for I am with you.” (Is. 41:10)

God Has Mercy on Whom He Chooses – Romans 9:14-29

Romans 9:14-29

In the previous section of Romans, Paul wrote of God’s sovereign power to save His people and of the inability of any other power to separate us from His love. But now, Paul is primarily dealing with the issue of election, or God’s choice. The apostle wants to show us that membership in the family of God has always been by God’s choosing based on His own will and purposes, not on man’s ancestry or anything he does. …

January 7th – Isaiah 26:3

Isaiah 26:3 

Everyone is in search of peace. That’s why between self help books, online programs, and support groups, finding tranquility is a billion dollar industry. But we needn’t search for the latest thing, or spend even a dollar to find serenity. All we have to do is look to Jesus who promises to give us His perfect peace. The one place the Enemy loves to attack the most is our minds. Because as Proverbs 23:7 tells us, “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” So when our focus is on our circumstances instead of on the Lord, our minds become playgrounds for Satan to wreak havoc. But when instead of trusting our fallible thoughts we trust God, we welcome His perfect peace into our hearts and mind. Life is hard. And the battle for our minds is real. But perfect peace is obtainable through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. For no matter what goes on the world we can count on this. “He himself is our peace.” (Eph. 2:14)