Saturday, April 9, 2011

BOOK REVIEW - Indivisble

Author, Kristen Heitzmann has written another incredible book.  This book was one of the hardest books to put down.  Police Chief Jonah Westfall has experienced the dark side of his life battling alcholism.  In his town he continues to battle the dark side in gruesome act investigations. Seeking to unmask the perpetrator before the crime escalates and destroys the tranquility of his small mountain town, Jonah fights for answers.  Besides Jonah's never-ending conflicts with his childhood friend, Tia Manning whom he has more than a passing history, he has another women in town that is passionate to have all of his attention.  But Jonah can't penetrate every wound or secret, especially one fueled by a love and guilt teetering on madness.  Kristen Heitzmann has written a spellbinding tale of severed connections and the consequences of lfe lived alone.  This book was not a disappointment to read.

Matthew 8:28

"When Jesus arrived on the other side of the lake, in the region of the Gadarenes, two men who were possessed by demons met him. They lived in a cemetery and were so violent that no one could go through that area."
Jesus deliberately went where everyone else knew one should not go. He had no fear of demon-possessed men, because he knew he had authority over them. Remember that Jesus is never afraid to go where you fear danger lurks. Nothing is dangerous to him. He has authority over everything, even demons. And if you're with him, you are always completely safe. Because nothing can harm him, nothing can harm you, either. He shares that utterly safe place with you.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Genesis 25:29-34

"One day when Jacob was cooking some stew, Esau arrived home from the wilderness exhausted and hungry. Esau said to Jacob, 'I'm starved! Give me some of that red stew!' (This is how Esau got his other name, Edom, which means 'red.')

 "'All right,' Jacob replied, 'but trade me your rights as the firstborn son.'

"'Look, I'm dying of starvation!' said Esau. 'What good is my birthright to me now?'

 "But Jacob said, 'First you must swear that your birthright is mine.' So Esau swore an oath, thereby selling all his rights as the firstborn to his brother, Jacob.

 "Then Jacob gave Esau some bread and lentil stew. Esau ate the meal, then got up and left. He showed contempt for his rights as the firstborn."
Jacob apparently wanted the firstborn's rights and was looking for a way to get it. He seized his opportunity when he saw that Esau would do anything for some food right now. Esau had his eyes only on the now; Jacob looked to the future. Esau lost, Jacob won. Esau never even seemed to understand what he'd just done. But Jacob would remember. Are your decisions made with an eye to what has lasting value, or only to temporary pleasure?

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Proverbs 4:10-13

"My child, listen to me and do as I say,
  and you will have a long, good life.
I will teach you wisdom's ways
  and lead you in straight paths.
  When you walk, you won't be held back;
  when you run, you won't stumble.
Take hold of my instructions; don't let them go.
  Guard them, for they are the key to life."
Wisdom's ways are straight paths. Wisdom allows us to get where we need to be faster and easier. Wisdom leads to a fulfilled life. Are you seeking God's wisdom for today? You know where to find it—in his Word, and by praying for specific guidance from the Holy Spirit.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Matthew 8:23-27

"Then Jesus got into the boat and started across the lake with his disciples. Suddenly, a fierce storm struck the lake, with waves breaking into the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke him up, shouting, 'Lord, save us! We're going to drown!'

"Jesus responded, 'Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!' Then he got up and rebuked the wind and waves, and suddenly there was a great calm.

"The disciples were amazed. 'Who is this man?' they asked. 'Even the winds and waves obey him!'"
The disciples were terrified. A fierce storm kicked up, and that's all they could see. They did not reason that nothing would happen because Jesus was in the boat with them. He was asleep. Sometimes it feels like Jesus is "asleep" when we go through our storms. We think he's asleep because he's unaware or he doesn't care. That's "little faith." In reality, he's asleep only because he's not worried. If we believed that, we'd have "more faith" and would feel peace in our storms as well. It starts on the inside, with faith in the one who is not worried in our storms because he knows he has them under control.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Genesis 25:20-21, 26c

"When Isaac was forty years old, he married Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel the Aramean from Paddan-aram and the sister of Laban the Aramean.

"Isaac pleaded with the LORD on behalf of his wife, because she was unable to have children. The LORD answered Isaac's prayer, and Rebekah became pregnant with twins. … Isaac was sixty years old when the twins were born."
Like Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebekah also had trouble conceiving a child. Could it be that God had Abraham and Isaac wait for their hearts' desires so that they would seek him, and so that it would be quite obvious that these children came from God? Note too that Isaac pleaded on behalf of his wife—this drew him closer to Rebekah and to God. When God is doing something in our lives, it is always about him getting the glory, about our coming to know him more deeply and drawing closer to the relationships he's given us.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Matthew 8:19-22

"Then one of the teachers of religious law said to him, 'Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.' "But Jesus replied, 'Foxes have dens to live in, and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place even to lay his head.'

 "Another of his disciples said, 'Lord, first let me return home and bury my father.' "But Jesus told him, 'Follow me now. Let the spiritually dead bury their own dead.'"
Following Jesus means putting him ahead of all else, from our own comfort to social obligations. There is to be no, "first let me …" situation. Are you truly following Jesus? It's not an impulsive decision. It needs to be made after soberly counting the cost. It's not going to be easy, Jesus warns. But it will be worthwhile, because he's the one leading. Remember that you are following Someone—and that it means he will be with you. It is not just a way, it is a person