God knows the plans He has for us. Wonderful, glorious plans. And just like He did with David, God He will send us helpers to see those plans done. People to strengthen, support, challenge, guide, protect, encourage, and love us. From Jonathon, the son of David’s greatest enemy, to men who would eagerly give their lives for their king, God provided mighty friends to help David fulfill what the Lord intended. And we can rejoice because He’ll do the same for us. Life can be hard, and at times lonely. But God never intends our spiritual walk to be one of solitude. We were created for fellowship with both Him and others. As such, we all need the love and support of godly friends. And if we let Him, God promises to place in our lives the people we need to accomplish the marvelous purpose He has for each of us.
What better cause do we have to rejoice, than knowing how generously the Lord showers us with gifts. And one of the greatest is the gift of salvation. Salvation has nothing to do with who a person is or what they do. Instead it is the result of God’s grace. No matter how hard we work, how much we obey, or how many good things we do in this life, none are enough to save us. No, salvation only comes through Jesus Christ and His saving grace. It is His blood that clothes us, covering us in His precious robe of righteousness. So no wonder our souls delight in the God of our salvation. The One who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. (Eph. 1:3) And all because we put our hope and faith in God and in His only begotten Son.
Parents Of Child On Life Support Getting Chance To Appeal Court Decision Allowing Doctors To Stop Treatment
Archie Battersbee, 12, was found unconscious with a ligature around his neck at his home in Southend, Essex, England, on April 7. He was later declared brain-dead at the hospital. The High Court that had previously decided to end all lifesaving care, has now been told to reconsider its decision to allow doctors to switch off the life support of the brain-damaged boy. Archie’s mother, Hollie Dance, who is fighting to keep her son on life support said, “Until God decides, then I will continue to fight for him and I will continue to be his voice.” Read more about the case here.
Two Faith leaders to be Awarded the Presidential Medal Of Freedom
Two faith leaders, a Catholic nun and a Greek Orthodox Christian priest, will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor in the United States. Sister Simone Campbell, former executive director of the lobbying group NETWORK, and the Rev. Alexander Karloutsos, the former vicar general of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, will be among the 17 Americans recognized in a ceremony at the White House. The medal is given to “individuals who have made exemplary contributions to the prosperity, values, or security of the United States, world peace, or other significant societal, public or private endeavors. Read more about the recipients here.
Pope Francis Condemns Abortion Compares It To Hiring A Hitman
Pope Francis has reaffirmed his opposition to abortion after the repeal of Roe v Wade by the U.S. Supreme Court. He is quoted as saying, “I ask: ‘Is it licit, is it right, to eliminate a human life to resolve a problem? It’s a human life – that’s science. The moral question is whether it is right to take a human life to solve a problem. Indeed, is it right to hire a hit man to solve a problem?” adding, “a human being is never incompatible with life. The Pope has also refuted recent claims that he intends to retire soon. Read more of his opinion here.
Firefighters Rescue Kitten Stuck In Vending Machine
A Tennessee Walmart employee was on her break when she heard cries coming from the Pepsi vending machine. There she found a small grey kitten lodged inside. When all attempts to free the feline failed, the employees called the local fire department. Arriving firefighters unplugged the vending machine and removed the back cover, but still could not see the crying kitten, according to the post. Eventually, firefighters found another opening where they could see the kitten and coaxed it out. The kitten was fine and found a new home in the employee who originally heard her cries. Read more about the heart warming rescue here.
We’ve all heard stories about someone passing and then their spouse passing soon after. Often times, scientist’s say, this happens from a condition called “broken heart syndrome.” And it occurs in response to sudden emotional stress, particularly grief. Long has it been known the toll joylessness takes on the heart, leading to both mental and physical consequences. Although we all face trials, Christians never need be crushed in spirit. For our joy isn’t found in anything this world can offer. Oh our spirits make take a bruising. And we may suffer heartbreak. But no injury can withstand the healing of the Lord when we keep our eyes and focus on Him. For Jesus is our great Physician. The ultimate source for our joy, even in the darkest of times. And there is no better medicine for the heart, than the joy that comes from knowing Christ.
The moment we receive Jesus as our Savior, the Holy Spirit enters into our hearts and gets to work. And the result of His labors is evidenced by the spiritual fruit we produce. Described by Paul, this fruit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, gentleness, and self-control. Throughout the Bible we are told of the importance of love. So no wonder Paul lists it first. But a very close second is joy. Because no matter our circumstances, God wants us to experience the fullness of His joy. An everlasting joy that can never be taken away. The Greek word for joy is chara, and is described as the natural reaction to the work of God, whether promised or fulfilled. There’s nothing that will humble us quicker than when we truly realize the favor and grace God shows us daily. So with thankful heats, how could the fruit of joy not be in spilled over into all we do!
I can remember as a little girl singing in Sunday school, “I’ve got the joy, joy, joy, joy, down in my heart…” I love that song! Even now I can’t hear it without singing along. Because I do have joy in my heart. Joy over the love and fellowship I have with Jesus. Drawing from His unending love, Christ came in the flesh to save you and to save me. And the privilege of having a relationship with my Savior overflows me with gladness! Unlike Peter, I have yet to meet my Lord. But even if I have not yet been physically touched by Him, I have been touched by His love, mercy, goodness, and care. John tells us that blessed are we who believe without seeing. (John 20:29) But I think the greatest blessing of all, is the inexpressible, glorious joy of knowing how much we are loved by our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
John Calvin once said, “No man is excluded from calling upon God, the gate of salvation is set open unto all men: neither is there any other thing which keepeth us back from entering in, save only our own unbelief.” Membership in the family of God has always been by God’s choosing. And nothing man does, nor his lineage, impact His choices. So how wonderful it is that God hasn’t limited His mercy to any one group. Not even to His own chosen people. Instead, in His great love, the Lord has shown mercy to every tribe, tongue, people, nation, class, age level, and gender. All we have to do is receive His free gift of salvation. Christians everywhere can clap and sing in joy knowing we are personally chosen by God. A heavenly Father whose nature is to be tender hearted, loving, and caring to all He calls His own.
When each day brings with it new stories of violence, atrocities, and horrors, it’s getting harder to find the good in the world. I often find myself crying out, “Why God? Why did you allow this to happen?” During the time of James, the scattered Jewish Christians shared these same feelings. Tired of the injustice, poverty, and corruption of Rome, they were angry at God for the evil of the world.
I’m a morning person. I love the freshness of each new day and the promise it holds. That being said, I learned long ago that nothing sucks the joy out of the morning quicker than waking up and immediately turning on the television, or getting on the internet. Filled with stories of disasters, tragedies, and divisiveness, far from feeling encouraged or empowered, I feel joyless. So instead I try to start my day with goodness. A goodness that carries me through any trial. That means going to God first. For God is good. And not because He does good, but because He is good. The Lord is the constant and unshakable source of every good thing in our lives. Ruler and Creator of heaven and earth, there is no darkness in Him to be found. And in a world that grows darker by the day, keeping our focus on God and His goodness, allows us to experience joy despite an Enemy who seeks to steal it.