No Plan B

When a man makes a vow to the LORD or takes an oath to obligate himself by a pledge, he must not break his word but must do everything he said.
Numbers 30:2

Legend has it that when Spanish explorer, Hernando Cortes, landed in Mexico, on the Yucatan Peninsula, in the 1500s, he ordered his men to burn the ships that had brought them there, to remove the possibility of doing anything other than going forward into the unknown.  He was there for a purpose, to take control of this country’s treasures.  He was committed to a victory, there was no backup plan, no Plan B.  It was all or nothing for his soldiers.  If they wanted to get home, they had to conquer the soldiers of the Yucatan and take their ships.  And so they did.

So many times in our lives we live with a Plan B, a backup plan.  If our marriage doesn’t go the way we want it, we get divorced.  If our job isn’t to our liking, we quit and move on.  If our pastor says something we don’t like, we go to a different church.  If God doesn’t do want we want him to do for us, we give up on him.

Joseph was a following of God who had no Plan B.  He had dreams as a young child of his family bowing down to him. His older brothers didn’t think much of this idea and one day they decided it was time to get rid of him.  They sold him to a group of traveling gypsies and off to Egypt he went.  He was sold as a slave to a guy named Potiphar, who was the captain of Pharaoh’s guard.  One day he was falsely charged with rape and thrown into prison.  Life wasn’t really going so well for Joseph, he went from bad to worse, yet he never cursed God nor turned his back on God.  One day Joseph was brought before the Pharaoh and he interpreted his dream and the Pharaoh was so impressed with Joseph that he put him in charge of all the land of Egypt, second only to himself.  Joseph ended up saving not only Egypt during an intense time of famine, but also his family, including his brothers who began this chain reaction of pain so many years before. God honored his commitment of faith.

We live in a society that lacks commitment.  But as a follower of Jesus, we need to be different.  The Word tells us:  Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. (Romans 12:2)

I have a couple of questions for you to ponder; do you have a Plan B?  Is it time to burn your boat?

Father, thank you for teaching me how to be committed to you.  Thank you for the examples of commitment that you give us, the greatest being your love for us.  When I am ready to give up, give me that burst of encouragement that I need to stay just a little bit longer. 

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

God Bless You!

Love,
Joyce

Sticks and Stones May Break My Bones
But Words Can Kill My Spirit.
The Lies That Get Stuck Inside.
Now Available!
http://www.sticksandstones.cc

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April Living Stone – Keith Harris

Keith Harris  – April  2011   Tree of Life Living Stone

Keith Harris lives by the motto:  Do The Next Right Thing.  And the next right thing for him  is to serve The Lord!  He faithfully sits at the computer each Sunday morning and runs the screens for the service.   He is also involved in the Food Pantry Ministry, helping with unloading the truck twice a month and distributing the food on give away day!  Keith has a great attitude with life and we are so grateful to honor him as our April Living Stone!

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

Back Pack Servolution Project

As one of our Servolution projects in April, we collected toiletries for the homeless and put them into back packs.  Thousands of items were collected.  We gave away 43 back packs.  A simple way to share God’s love!  Thank you to all who participated in this worthy cause!

From Commoner to Royalty

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
I Peter 2:9

On Friday, April 30, 2011, the world was mesmerized by the wedding of the year, maybe the century, as Kate Middleton married Prince William.  It was a royal affair, truly a wedding of fairy tale dimensions. I so enjoyed watching Kate and William riding through town in their horse drawn carriage escorted by hundreds of soldiers on horseback.  It was a sight that made me forget, just for a moment of tornadoes and brushfires, and earthquakes and tsunamis.  Yes, it was extremely extravagant, but the look of happiness and love on that young couple’s face made me smile as well.

I heard several reporters stating the fact that Kate woke up as a commoner, but would go to bed royalty.  Before she married Prince William, she wasn’t a princess or a duchess, she was simply Kate Middleton of Chapel Row, a small village 55 miles west of London.  But one day she met Prince William, they fell in love, were married and she immediately became Duchess of Cambridge, married to the second in line for the throne of England, a royal among royals!

Going from a commoner to royalty may seem like an impossible quest … yet for Kate it happened.   And it has happened to me as well.

One day, I was just Joyce Schneider, a commoner, a sinner, living my life for me.  Then I met the King of Kings, Jesus Christ, and I gave my life to him.  And that encounter changed me.  I became part of his royal priesthood, I became his chosen one.  He poured his extravagant love over me and into me and my life was no longer about me, but rather his working through me.  I became the child of the King.  So maybe that makes me Princess Joyce?  Not really sure of the title, I don’t need a title.  But what I know is, I am no longer common.  I am royalty, because of the Spirit of Jesus inside of me! 

And the very best part of this story is that it can be your story as well.  Jesus has room for everyone in his kingdom.  No one who comes to him is turned away.  The world is becoming more and more difficult to experience.  Devastation and destruction abound … but Jesus turns pain into blessings and brings peace into turbulent hearts.  He is the answer to every question.  And he is waiting for you.

I hope Kate and William have a fairy tale ending.  I hope they live happily ever after.  But with Jesus I know how my life ends.  I will live happily ever after with him … forever!

Jesus, thank you so much for saving my soul.  Thank you for bringing peace into my crazy life.  Thank you for allowing me to be your child.  Thank you Jesus that nothing about me is common as long as I am dwelling with you!  You are the King of Kings and I am so thankful to be a part of your kingdom.  Thank you that I am a part of your royal priesthood, I am chosen, I am your special possession.  You did call me out of darkness into your glorious light!  This is the very best ending to any story!

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

God’s Blessings To You,

Love,
Joyce

The Choices You Make Today …
Will Affect Your Tomorrow!
http://www.alifedecision.org