Hebrews 12:1,2

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God
Hebrews 12:1,2

Today I watched a football game with Bobby. I don’t usually watch football, but I had been working all day at church and I was tired when I came home, so I sat down on the couch to rest.  And that’s when I saw this football player with Hebrews 12:1,2 written on his face.  Where most of the guys just put black under their eyes, he had black and white letters under his, referencing a verse from The Bible.  And during the game, the broadcasters actually read the verse, on National TV, in front of millions of fans.  How cool is that?

The player’s name is Tim Tebow.  If you live in Florida, you know he plays for the Florida Gators.  He is an incredible football player.  He was the first player to win the Heisman trophy as a sophomore.  He has been breaking records his entire career.  And that is wonderful.

But the best thing about Tim Tebow is that he loves Jesus and he’s not ashamed to share his faith with the world.  He wears his faith for all to see! 

In a world where sports heroes are really not role models, Tim Tebow is a breath of fresh air.

Tim Tebow … You ROCK!

Father, thank you for this young man who loves you and is not ashamed to share his faith in you.  I pray for you to continue to strengthen him and guide him as he goes on with his career.

I love you Jesus!
   In Your Name I Pray,
  Amen

God’s Blessing Upon You!

Love,
Joyce

It’s All Because of Jesus!

 

Living Stone – November 2009

Destiny Oakes and Antoinette Kirschke are two teens who have their heads on straight and their hearts focused on Jesus.  Each Sunday evening  they give of their time to watch the kids while their mothers attend Ladies group.   Both girls are leaders in Straight Up Youth and Destiny also helps out in the nursery on Sunday mornings.  Destiny and Antoinette, you girls ROCK!

November 2009 – Tree of Life Living Stones

 

As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to him— you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
   I Peter 2:4,5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s All Because of Jesus!

Church Work Day / Christmas Decorating

We had a full day of clean up and decorating for Christmas on Saturday. Thank you to everyone who helped out.  A special SHOUT OUT / THANK YOU to Gwen Adams and her mom, Shirley Gottschalk for organizing the Christmas decorations! Great job ladies! 

You Rock!!

Here are some photos of the day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s All Because of Jesus!

The Great Turkey Give-Away – 2009

Harry Chapin Food Bank gave us a whole bunch of turkeys to give away this week.  Jimbo donated his truck and he, Patrick, Be and Carletta drove to Ft. Myers to pick them up on Tuesday!  Tuesday afternoon and all day Wednesday we gave away turkeys … about 300 total!

Thank you to everyone who helped out with this opportunity to bless others with food for Thanksgiving!

Here are some pictures!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s All Because of Jesus!

An Attitude of the Heart

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6,7

This is the time of year that we take a moment and think about what we are thankful for. At our dinner on Thursday, some of us will share our individual thoughts of gratitude. We’ll be thankful for our families, and our friends and the kids are always thankful for their pets. But as I was lying in bed this morning pondering this holiday of thanks, I realized that these things are simply blessings, the real source of thankfulness should be to the Provider. That was how the holiday originally started. A day to give thanks to the Lord.

It all started back in the early 1600’s. A group of Pilgrims had left England because of religious persecution. They traveled to Holland and lived with the Dutch for several years. But when their children started speaking Dutch and becoming attached to the Dutch way of life, the English felt their morals were being threatened and decided to head to America.

On September 6, 1620, 110 Pilgrims set sail for the new world on a ship called, The Mayflower. The trip across the ocean took 65 days and many folks became sick and one even died during the voyage. They settled in Plymouth, but by this time, winter had already invaded New England, and their living conditions were sparse, to say the least. The Pilgrims did the best they could that first winter, but out of the original 110 who had set sail in September, less than 50 survived. Life was looking pretty bleak, but they didn’t lose faith.

Then in March, the weather started to clear up and the Pilgrims met a fellow that changed their lives. An Indian by the name of Squanto walked into their camp. He spoke English, he had traveled to England with other sailors and learned their language. He taught the Pilgrims how to survive in this new land. As a result of those lessons, their harvest that fall was plentiful. And they had a huge celebration to give thanks to God for the provision that He had shown them.

Thanksgiving isn’t just a day to stuff ourselves with turkey or to try to get the best shopping deals.

Thanksgiving is an attitude of the heart and one that we should live out all year round.

Father, You are so faithful. Those early Pilgrims simply wanted to live in peace in a place where they could worship you. And the journey that they endured to do that was truly amazing. And yet, in the midst of their challenges, you provided just what they needed. Father, forgive me when I fuss about my little discomforts, help me to have the fortitude to endure whatever comes my way. And Lord Jesus, thank you for all the blessings you have provided for me and that I can live my life in peace, worshipping you.

I Love You Jesus.
In Your name I pray,
Amen

God’s Blessings Upon You!

Love,
Joyce

It’s All Because of Jesus!

Lion Chaser?

Benaiah chased a lion down into a pit. Then, despite the snow and slippery ground, he caught the lion and killed it.
II Samuel 23:20

I read a great book this week, In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day, by Mark Batterson. The concept of the book is taken from a passage in II Samuel, a scripture that I might have read a time or two … but never really gave much thought.  This guy, Benaiah, was a valiant fighter who performed great exploits, according to the passage.  One day he actually chased a lion down into a pit and killed it.  I mean really?   He then went on to be in charge of King David’s Bodyguard and then Commander in Chief of King Soloman’s army.  Pretty impressive resume.

I wonder what he was thinking that day …  Hey, I think I’ll go kill myself a lion?

He actually chased the lion … and he won!  And he went on to have an amazing career in Israel’s army under the two most powerful Kings of all times!

David knew a little about lions and bears and giants. When he was pleading with King Saul to let him fight the giant, Goliath, he shared that he had actually killed a lion and a bear in his father’s pastures, while tending to the sheep.  Scripture tells us that David ran quickly towards Goliath that infamous day, and he won! (I Samuel 17).   And he went on to become King of Israel!

In his book, Mark says:  Your greatest regret at the end of your life will be the lions you didn’t chase. You will look back longingly on risks not taken, opportunities not seized, and dreams not pursued. Stop running away from what scares you most and start chasing the God-ordained opportunities that cross your path.

Your greatest regrets will be the lions you didn’t chase … I love that!

I don’t want regrets in my life.  I want to take the risks.  I want to pursue the dreams that God has given me.

I want to be a lion chaser.

Thank you Jesus for giving us dreams to pursue and lions to chase.  Help us Lord to not be complacent with status quo or comfortable.  Ignite that spark in each of our souls Lord to seek after YOU with our entire being.

   I love you Jesus!
   In your name I pray,
   Amen

God’s Blessings To You!

Love,
Joyce

It’s All Because Of Jesus!

Staying Warm

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
– Hebrews 10:24,25

It was a bit chilly this morning when we went out to the bus stop. Chase was dressed in jeans and a t-shirt and as we stood on the street, waiting for the bus to arrive, he was complaining of being cold. He’s just like me, he likes to be snuggly and warm. I hugged him close to me, actually tucked him up under one of my sweatshirts, I had on two, I knew one wouldn’t be enough for me. As we stood there, with him snuggled up next to me, he said he was nice and toasty. I was actually comfortable before I snuggled up with Chase, but as I snuggled with him, I got even warmer. He snuggled with me until the bus came, then headed off to school.

Chase had needed the closeness of my body to help keep him warm this morning. He was cold on his own, but standing next to me, he was able to gain the warmth he needed. And although I wasn’t cold, when he was snuggled up beside me, I was even toastier.

When I’m feeling cold in my spirit, it’s important for me to be around other Believers, to ignite that spark, get that flame going again. And on the flip side, even when I’m sailing along, pretty comfortable in my walk, when I get around other like-minded folks, it sparks my spirit even more and keeps the flame burning stronger, that iron sharpening iron concept. And I can help keep their spirits on fire as well.

A lone coal, regardless of how hot it is at any point, will eventually burn itself out if it’s left sitting on the hearth alone.

We need the encouragement and support of each other to keep our fires burning. That is why God tells us to not forsake the gathering of the body.

We need each other to stay warm!

Father, thank you for the wonderful support group that you have brought into my life. That I don’t have to sit on the hearth alone Lord. That you are always bringing people into my life to encourage me and who I in turn can encourage as well.

I Love You Jesus.
In Your Name I Pray!
Amen

God Bless You!

Love,
Joyce

It’s All Because Of Jesus!