Saturday, October 31, 2009

GUEST BLOGGER: Dr. James L. McIntosh

I'm pleased to present my dad as a guest blogger today. He is an Instructor and the Academic Dean at Brookes Bible Institute in St. Louis, MO. A couple of years ago, he wrote this short message for the back of a church bulletin. With his permission, I am sharing it with you now....

I Love Fire Departments

While teaching a class in our small Bible Institute, one day a student asked what it means to be a disciple and how that relates to going to heaven. The Lord provided me with a good answer, as we have a fire department across the street.

In response, I told [the students] how one could become a “disciple” of the fire department. (They do like visitors, you know.) Each week, I could go there and learn what they have to do to put out fires. They could teach me about cleaning the equipment, getting it all ready for the next emergency, and what wax to use to polish each item. They could show me what mask to use for each kind of fire and what tank to use to breathe properly in each situation. They could teach me how to put the hoses away. They would call me by name and be glad I came, as we all are friendly. However, when the bell rings and they leave, I would be left behind. You see, I am only a learner, or a disciple. Not a part of them.

Each week, we have in our churches the same situation. Many friendly folk come and are learners. They can tell most of the facts of what Jesus Christ did for mankind. They can tell of His virgin birth, sinless life, death, burial, resurrection, and even ascension. Yet, when it is time to leave this earth and go to heaven, they will be left behind, as they were only learners. They were not a part of Him.

A disciple is a learner. Become a “truster” in what He did, not just knowing what He did. Place your TRUST in Him today.


Saturday, October 24, 2009

Be a Blessing Today

Its that time of year - cold and flu season. So many people are, or already have been, sick with one thing or another. I’m not going to take the time right now to tell you all the best ways to keep from getting sick, what or what not to eat, what supplements to take, etc. There are many other websites out there that have already covered that. What I would rather focus on is how we can help each other during the times our friends and family are not feeling well. Here are just a few suggestions. You can do these without even entering the person’s home and exposing yourselves to their illness:

  • This may be obvious to some of you, but prayer is very important. Don’t just pray a blanket prayer like “Lord please help all the sick people get well.” Pray a specific prayer for each person you know who needs healing.
  • Send a “Get Well” card, or a note of encouragement, letting them know you are thinking of them. Even an e-mail or a note on Facebook can help to brighten someone’s day, if only for a little while.
  • Make them a simple meal, such as soup and crackers, especially if the main cook of the family doesn’t feel well enough to prepare meals. Or, for those of you who can afford it, ask the family what they like and go buy frozen dinners, or order take-out for them.
  • Drop off a basket of videos, books and/or games for the family to borrow while they are stuck at home. Or, go buy the kids a new toy or some coloring books to help pass the time.
  • Call the family up and ask if there are any errands you can run for them around town.
I think its important that we all try to remember each other in our times of need. Ask the Lord to show you who needs a special blessing today; and, most importantly, when some names have been brought to your attention, go and BE a blessing.

(click on the title above to hear the tune)

Words by Ira B. Wilson
Music by George S. Schuler

Out in the highways and byways of life,
many are weary and sad;
Carry the sunshine where darkness is rife
making the sorrowing glad.

Make me a blessing,
Make me a blessing,
Out of my life
May Jesus shine;
Make me a blessing, O savior, I pray,
Make me a blessing to someone today.

Tell the sweet story of Christ and His love;
Tell of His pow'r to forgive;
Others will trust Him if only you prove
true ev'ry moment you live.


Give as 'twas given to you in your need;
Love as the Master loved you;
Be to the helpless a helper indeed;
Unto your mission be true.


Sunday, October 18, 2009

GUEST BLOGGER: David Stankus

We have a guest blogger today: My husband, David. He has been involved with Emergency Services for over 20 years now. Here's what he has to say about seeing the fruits of our labor... 

As a Paramedic, I don't usually get to see the end results of my work. I do as my medical protocols command, then let the doctor worry about the outcome. One day, my partner and I were thrilled to see the results of our labor as we had a direct hand in saving someone's life.

We received a call for a person choking. When we arrived, we found a man who was indeed choking. He was unconscious and not breathing. We followed our protocols and training and in a matter of a few seconds, we had the object out and his airway was clear. We began helping him to breathe and on the way to the hospital, he started to breathe on his own. About an hour later, we returned to the hospital with another patient and we checked on him and found that he was awake and doing fine.

It was exciting to see the results of our labor. Usually, when we deal with a patient, we assess the problem, begin treatment in our ambulance, and deliver him to the ER. That's the last we see or hear of the patient. We know we make a difference in that person's life but, sometimes, we don't get to see it.

This also has a spiritual application. We labor in the cause of Christ and, many times, do not see the fruits of that labor. It is easy to get discouraged and believe that you are not really making an impact or a difference for Christ. However, God said His Word will not come back empty. He does do something with the seeds we sow. Occasionally, we get to see the fruit of our labor. But, even if we don't, we must remember to do as Christ commands us, then let Him worry about the outcome.

Isa 55:11 - So shall My word be which goes forth from My mouth; it shall not return to me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding {in the matter} for which I sent it. (NAS)


Sunday, October 11, 2009

I Just Came to Praise the Lord

When I was growing up, my parents enjoyed listening to various types of music and collected a large number of different LP’s for us all to listen to (an LP is a Long Playing record, for those of you who were wondering). Those were the days when the only thing available for listening to music was either the radio, a cassette player, or a record player. My parents instilled in me a love for a variety of good, wholesome music, as we would spend an afternoon or evening listening to our newest album.

One of the Christian albums we all enjoyed was by The Imperials; and, a song they made popular is a very simple chorus about praising the Lord.

I just came to praise the Lord.
I just came to praise the Lord.
I just came to praise His holy name.
I just came to praise the Lord.

On this beautiful Autumn day, I am coming to this blog to do just one thing - to praise the Lord and thank Him for His goodness. Through good times, and difficult times, He has been there for me and my family. I am thankful for all He has done for us.

Ps 146:2 - I will praise the LORD all my life;
I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Happy 90th Birthday, Grandma!

Yesterday, a gathering of 50-60 family and friends met at my grandmother’s church to help celebrate her 90th birthday! It was a nice day - a time to fellowship, share, cry a little, and laugh a lot - a time to remember the good times we’ve had, and to look back and laugh at the things that may not have seemed so funny at the time it first happened. It was a day to recognize a wonderful “young” lady who has touched so many lives with her love and compassion, her sense of humor, her strength, and her love for the Lord.

Grandma has been such an inspiration to me, and to many others as well. I am so “proud” to call her my grandma. She isn’t perfect (Who is?), but the overall way she has lived her life is a testimony of how I want to be remembered when I am her age.

Grandma’s favorite hymn is “Because He Lives.” As I listen to the lyrics, I can see how perfect they are, and how well they fit with my Grandma’s life. Through all the struggles she has encountered, as well as all the joyous times in her life, she has never forgotten what really matters.... Because HE lives, we can face tomorrow....

Even if you don’t know my grandma, please take some time to listen to this song and be reminded of how our lives are soooo worth living.... Just because HE lives....