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Hope

Discovering Hope in the Psalms

January 26, 2018

Have you ever gone through a difficult time? A situation that lasted awhile? If so, you know we need hope.

Raising a disabled son was like that for me. I tell people, it felt like swallowing razor blades for breakfast. He wanted to be normal, like everyone else. How excruciating to watch him try and fail. His tears shredded the depths of my soul.

I made it through with the Psalms. The writers of the Psalms did not hold back. In their brutal honesty we can find comfort.

You’ll notice Psalms start off with sadness or distress, but end up joyful, as if the author found the answer in his faith. The only one that doesn’t is Psalm 88, which draws a pic of depression. I think God put it in the Bible for those really tough times when we need to grieve.

 

Pam Farrell has written a study on the Psalms called Discovering Hope in the Psalms.

Learn more about her here.

Apologetics, Commitment to Christ, Communication, Death, Easter, Educating your children, Heart of the Matter, Hope, Passover, Resurrection

Why Easter is the Most Important Christian Holiday

April 14, 2017

Why Easter is the Most Important Christian Holiday

Rabbits don’t lay eggs, they bear live young. Someone told me the story of a pagan holiday combined with Christianity. Something about a fertility celebration? It wasn’t Christian, but it got mixed in. However, I found family movies of my first Easter. My brother and I had Easter baskets, chocolate eggs, and fancy outfits. Watching my parents follow me around while I wore my pretty dress almost makes tears come to my eyes. (They are both in heaven.)  In later years, I do remember picking out my fancy clothes and dying eggs for Easter egg hunts. We always went to church to sing and praise God for the resurrection.  However, despite the fact what we celebrated every year, I didn’t”t realize how important Easter was until I got older.  It may have been my fault for not listening, but I didn’t get it. Now I do.

My guest is my husband, Ray Simmons. He’s a Bible teacher and elder at Grace Community Church. We chose a different tradition raising our children, and he will explain why Easter is so important.

Ray Simmons leading Passover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1:00 Why is Easter so important?

2:10 What evidence do we have that Christ rose?

 

[tweetthis]He is risen. He is risen indeed![/tweetthis]

[tweetthis]Because Jesus lives, we have eternal life[/tweetthis]

 

 

 

Learn more about doing a Messianic Passover here or here.

Armor of God, Bible, Commitment to Christ, Emotions, Encouragement, Heart of the Matter, Hope, Keeping our focus, Living through heartache, Making choices, Perseverance, Walking by Faith

Spiritual Warfare: Persevere with the Armor of God

April 12, 2017
Persevere with the armor

Spiritual Warfare: Persevere with the Armor of God

We are in the midst of a war, how can we find the stamina to keep going? Let me tell you a story.

Let me tell you a story. I have a disabled child and I homeschooled. I took him in for evaluation and the person I used recommended I take him to professionals several days a week for therapy. Leaving that lady’s office, I wondered how I could follow her instructions with my four other kids. I chuckled to myself that I would have to put somebody up for adoption, something I’d never do.

This child’s issues broke my heart every day. When I tried teaching him the simplest jobs, he collapsed into brought blood-curdling screams. “I’m stupid. I’m stupid, I’m stupid.” For instance, teaching a child to count is easy. You pick up blocks and say one for the first, two for the second.The only problem was my son couldn’t do that. Picking up a block required he use his fingers with the right amount of pressure. It took too much concentration.  Saying the numbers in the right order, sequencing was also terribly hard. He could never do the two things at once. I never did do what the lady recommended.

I hired part-time therapists and worked on their goals until we met again. However, it was an inch by inch proposition whenever I taught him anything. He had neurological issues due to his seizures, and he could not concentrate. I had three seconds if I held my face to his, almost touching his nose. That makes teaching really tough. Many mornings I prayed fervently in my bedroom before I went downstairs to work with him.

As wives and mothers, we will face challenges. Where and how will we find the courage and perseverance to stick to the task? Katy Kauffman is my guest today. She has written a Bible study based on 2 Timothy, and it’s about perseverance.

2:50 What does God have to say about not giving up?

3:50 Describe perseverance for Jesus.

5:00  What do you think of Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane prior to his crucifixion?

6:10 How can we deal with those who reject Christ without being preachy?

8:00 What does the heart of a warrior look like?

Katy Kauffman

 

Learn more about Katy here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[tweetthis]Helmet of Salvation: Protect your mind[/tweetthis]

[tweetthis]Don’t forget your armor today, Christian[/tweetthis]

 

Bible, Church, Commitment to Christ, Communication, Emotions, Encouragement, Family, Forgiveness, Freedom, Guilt, Heart of the Matter, Hope, Love, Making choices, Parenting, People Pleaser, Sex, Surrender to Christ, Venereal Disease, Walking by Faith

Bob Fife’s Experience: Gaining Freedom

March 17, 2017
Gaining Freedom

Bob Fife Shares his Experience Gaining Freedom

I don’t know if you have an itch to be perfect, but I do. I was a straight a student in school, and I worked so hard not to make any mistakes.  That tendency to long for good grades has snuck into my everyday life. I cannot bear to err.  And I know I fail all the time. The older I get, the more I am aware of the wickedness that resides in me. I wish it was not there.

Romans 3:23 says “For All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Everyone agrees none of us are perfect, but some have a leaning toward different sins. Sin separates us from God, but the consequences of some sins are more extreme than others.

Either way, we can become snared in sin and be unable to free ourselves.

In 2 Peter, the apostle speaks of false teachers when he writes:  “They promise them freedom, but they themselves are slaves of corruption. For whatever overcomes a person, to that he is enslaved.” This verse makes it clear that a person can become a slave of sin.  Fortunately, the Apostle John shares you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

Bob Fife was enslaved by homosexuality for twenty years. His book, Out, tells his story of breaking free.

Learn more about Bob here.

2:10 Did the church reach out to you as you entered the lifestyle?

3:10 What was your family situation growing up?

4:38 What was your relationship like with your father?

6:20 I understand you were molested as a child.

9:00 A lot of people believe a homosexual cannot claim faith in Christ. Tell me how you did.

10:35 What keeps people in the lifestyle?

11:44 What was the catalyst that brought you out of perversion?

13:45 You said the homosexual community has conditional love. Can you explain that?

 

[tweetthis]You can be freed from homosexuality[/tweetthis]

Bob Fife

Abuse, Authority of Scripture, Commitment to Christ, Crying out to God, Emotions, Freedom, Grief, Heart of the Matter, Hope, Rape, Restoration, Waiting

Overcome Abuse: Rewriting Emotional Script

February 4, 2017
Rewrite your emotional Script

Overcome Abuse: Rewriting Emotional Script

You can overcome abuse, and we are going to talk about how that’s done.

The mind is incredible. God designed us so we can access our memories and relive events. As we do that the emotions wash over us again as if it was happening in that moment.  In fact, that’s one reason Worry is bad for us because we imagine something bad happening and our bodies respond as if it did happen. All the negative chemicals start flowing through our bodies. Those bad chemicals can make us ill.

Ladies, If you’ve lived very long, you’ve been through heartrending stuff, you’ll have baggage. Stuff from the past that weighs you down and impacts your actions and even reactions.  What can we do about that?

2 Cor. 10 5 says, “We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ,”

Today we are going to talk about how you can implement that verse and how Scripture can help you heal:

I have Becky Harling with me, and she wrote, Rewriting Your Emotional Script

2:25 Why pray Scripture? Isn’t that magical thinking?

3:12 How can God heal you with the Word?

4:00 How can we be ‘poor in spirit’?

5:30  We need God.

6:45 How is letting go different from being a victim

7:50 Why would God make you wait?

10:25 God suffers too. Is that correct?

11:40 Hard times make you grow.

Learn more about Becky here.

Becky Harling

 

 

 

[tweetthis]God hates abuse[/tweetthis]

[tweetthis]You can find emotional healing in Christ[/tweetthis]

 

 

Bible, Christmas, Christmas holiday, Communication, Depression, Emotions, Encouragement, Family, Grief, Heart of the Matter, Hope, Living through heartache, Love, Redemption, Rest, Restoration, Time, Walking by Faith

Cynthia Ruchti: Christmas and God’s Restoring Love

December 23, 2016
restoring Christmas

Cynthia Ruchti: Christmas and God’s Restoring Love

Psalm 51:12 Restore to me the joy of Thy salvation, And sustain me with a willing spirit.

  We celebrate Christmas because God came to earth as a baby to die for our sins. That’s a pretty huge event, very worth celebrating.For many people, it’s a painful time. You may have sustained a loss during the year or miss someone who died years ago.  We don’t often think about Christmas and restoration in the same sentence, but my guest, Cynthia Ruchti wrote a book, Restoring Christmas. What an interesting concept!  I looked up the word restore and found it occurred about seventy times. (depending on your translation, that may vary.)

After giving the matter some thought, I agree with Cynthia. Jesus came to earth to be our redeemer. He came to pay the price for our sins so we can have restored fellowship with God.  But what about all those other hurts we experience? Cynthia shares her heart on heartache during Christmas.

 

1:45 Share the basic story of the book

5:35 Did any event in your life prompt this story?

12:10 Talk about restoration for those hurting places.

19:50 Jesus is close to the broken-hearted. Share with people who may be there this year.

21:25 What about folks who are stumbling through Christmas with sadness or depression?

[tweetthis]I can’t unravel, I’m hemmed in hope[/tweetthis]

[tweetthis]Christmas is all about God’s love[/tweetthis]

Restoring

Cynthia Ruchti

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Learn more about Cynthia here.

 

 

Christmas, Christmas holiday, Commitment to Christ, Encouragement, Hope, Keeping our focus, Praise, Putting Others First, Rest, Trust, Walking by Faith

Christmas Meditations: Words to Live by: Author Linda Gilden

December 4, 2016
Words to Live By
Linda Gilden

Linda Gilden

Christmas Meditations with Author Linda Gilden

Have you ever looked up the phrase Christmas rush?  I just did that. I saw pictures of people buried in lights that didn’t work, or under a pile of packages. One picture had Santa Claus pointing to a clock.  Another showed a distressed lady surrounded by piles of bows and ribbons. The one I liked the best was shoppers pushing carts heaped with gifts. One lady in the foreground is trying to hold a package in place as she hurried to the register. Shopping can be a huge distraction for me this time of year. After all, we are celebrating the birth of Christ. Right after Jesus arrival here as a baby, God saw fit to send an angel chorus to earth to sing:

Luke 2:14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”

Without a doubt, this his message of peace was pretty important. God didn’t send angel choruses often in history. He was announcing hope for our broken world, yet sometimes I get forget and still get caught up in the craziness of the holiday. How can we keep our focus and not get obliterated by the holiday?

 

Author Linda Gilden shares thoughts from her newest book and meditations from her newest book, Words to Live By. 

Learn more about Linda here.

1:40 Discuss the word joyful.

3:45 How can we continue to rejoice despite the horrors going on around us?

6:05 Abide is often mentioned in John 15. Discuss how that word can impact our thoughts.

7:50 Romans 1 discusses how serious it can be to stop being thankful. Share how thankfulness can permeate our lives.

9:05 Things around us don’t last. How can we keep our focus on the eternal?

11:35 Share about a servant mindset

13:50 How can we celebrate Christ’s birth appropriately?

[tweetthis]Celebrate the Birth of Christ![/tweetthis]

 

 

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