Advent Day 26 – Good News for December 23

23 12 2010

Luke 1:57-66

When the time arrived for Elizabeth to have her child she gave birth to a son. Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown his great mercy toward her, and they rejoiced with her.

When they came on the eighth day to circumcise the child, they were going to call him Zechariah after his father, but his mother said in reply, “No. He will be called John.” But they answered her, “There is no one among your relatives who has this name.” So they made signs, asking his father what he wished him to be called. He asked for a tablet and wrote, “John is his name,” and all were amazed. Immediately his mouth was opened, his tongue freed, and he spoke blessing God.

Then fear came upon all their neighbors, and all these matters were discussed throughout the hill country of Judea. All who heard these things took them to heart, saying, “What, then, will this child be? For surely the hand of the Lord was with him.”

The Daily Path: Is your tongue locked in fear? Save your “Seasons Greetings” and “Happy Holidays”. Speak Christmas!





Touch Him – Good News for September 7

7 09 2010

Luke 6:12-19

Jesus departed to the mountain to pray, and he spent the night in prayer to God. When day came, he called his disciples to himself, and from them he chose Twelve, whom he also named Apostles:

Simon, whom he named Peter, and his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, Simon who was called a Zealot, and Judas the son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.

And he came down with them and stood on a stretch of level ground. A great crowd of his disciples and a large number of the people from all Judea and Jerusalem and the coastal region of Tyre and Sidon came to hear him and to be healed of their diseases; and even those who were tormented by unclean spirits were cured. Everyone in the crowd sought to touch him because power came forth from him and healed them all.

The Daily Path: This morning I woke up feeling a great heaviness after a night of troubled dreams. Then I read the words of Luke’s gospel: Everyone in the crowd sought to touch him because power came forth from him and healed them all.

Room to Chat: Jesus, count me among the great crowd of disciples who come to you for healing.





Mountain Scene – Good News for February 28

28 02 2010

Luke 9:28-36

Jesus took Peter, John, and James and went up the mountain to pray. While he was praying his face changed in appearance and his clothing became dazzling white. And behold, two men were conversing with him, Moses and Elijah, who appeared in glory and spoke of his exodus that he was going to accomplish in Jerusalem.

Peter and his companions had been overcome by sleep, but becoming fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men standing with him. As they were about to part from him, Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good that we are here; let us make three tents, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”

But he did not know what he was saying. While he was still speaking, a cloud came and cast a shadow over them, and they became frightened when they entered the cloud. Then from the cloud came a voice that said,  “This is my chosen Son; listen to him.”

After the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. They fell silent and did not at that time tell anyone what they had seen.

The Daily Path: Today is Sunday! Where will you see God?





Work Ethic – Good News for January 13

13 01 2010

Mark 1:29-38

On leaving the synagogue Jesus entered the house of Simon and Andrew with James and John. Simon’s mother-in-law lay sick with a fever. They immediately told him about her. He approached, grasped her hand, and helped her up. Then the fever left her and she waited on them.

When it was evening, after sunset, they brought to him all who were ill or possessed by demons. The whole town was gathered at the door. He cured many who were sick with various diseases, and he drove out many demons, not permitting them to speak because they knew him.

Rising very early before dawn, he left and went off to a deserted place, where he prayed. Simon and those who were with him pursued him and on finding him said, “Everyone is looking for you.” He told them, “Let us go on to the nearby villages that I may preach there also. For this purpose have I come.”

So he went into their synagogues, preaching and driving out demons throughout the whole of Galilee.

The Daily Path: Be nice to your mother-in-law!





Dribbling – Good News for January 4

4 01 2010

John 3:22 – 4:6

We receive from him whatever we ask, because we keep his commandments and do what pleases him. And his commandment is this: We should believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and love one another just as he commanded us.

Those who keep his commandments remain in him, and he in them, and the way we know that he remains in us is from the Spirit whom he gave us.

Beloved, do not trust every spirit but test the spirits to see whether they belong to God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. This is how you can know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges Jesus Christ come in the flesh belongs to God, and every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus does not belong to God.

This is the spirit of the antichrist who, as you heard, is to come, but in fact is already in the world.

You belong to God, children, and you have conquered them, for the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. They belong to the world; accordingly, their teaching belongs to the world, and the world listens to them. We belong to God, and anyone who knows God listens to us, while anyone who does not belong to God refuses to hear us. This is how we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of deceit.

The Daily Path: I coach a third grade CYO basketball team. One of the things we stress at this level is for players to look up as they dribble the basketball. This enables them to see the entire court and know where their teammates and the opposition are positioned. If players are looking down as they move, they can only see one thing… where the ball is. This myopic vision means the player will miss the best opportunities, or end up in a position on the court where they don’t want to be.

It strikes me that in this morning’s reading “Coach John” is asking us to look up so we can see where we are on the court. Sometimes I get so busy focused on living (dribbling the ball) that I can’t see the bigger picture (the whole court). Am I aligned with the spirit of Christ? Am I where God wants me to be? Or have I dribbled myself into a corner with few options, exactly where the opposition (antichrist) wants me to be?

Room to Chat: Father, as I go about this business of living, grant me the vision to see where I am headed at all times. Keep me focused on the one true Spirit.





Immediate Surrender – Good News for November 30

30 11 2009

Matthew 4:18-22

As Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon who is called Peter, and his brother Andrew, casting a net into the sea; they were fishermen. He said to them, “Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men.” At once they left their nets and followed him.

He walked along from there and saw two other brothers, James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John. They were in a boat, with their father Zebedee, mending their nets. He called them, and immediately they left their boat and their father and followed him.

The Daily Path: Peter, Andrew, James and John. Four men, who, with nothing more than an invitation, immediately surrendered their lives to follow Christ.

Room To Chat: Lord, show me the way. Let the example of your disciples resonate in my mind and heart. Fill me with your grace.

 





Fellowship – Good News for October 28

28 10 2009

Luke 6:12-16

Jesus went up to the mountain to pray, and he spent the night in prayer to God. When day came, he called his disciples to himself, and from them he chose Twelve, whom he also named Apostles: Simon, whom he named Peter, and his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, Simon who was called a Zealot, and Judas the son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.

The Daily Path: On Sunday, I will join a group of old friends for a few days of golf on the Monterey (CA) Peninsula. We all used to work together on the corporate treadmill and had the chance to play a fair amount of golf with each other while entertaining our customer base. About ten years ago we decided to start a fall tradition of blending a few days of bad golf with exceptional fellowship. Last year I wasn’t able to attend. The guys all knew about my business and financial struggles and didn’t want to embarrass me by making a big deal over my absence. For this I was grateful.

Not much had changed for me when the 2009 event planning began this past spring. Recognizing my situation, some of the guys got together and discussed the likelihood that once again I wouldn’t be able to attend. Apparently that option was not acceptable to them. Over the summer they reached out periodically with a barter approach, quietly ensuring I’d be able to make all the deposits and payments for the trip. They even found ways to get me out on the golf course to play a bit… without any cost to me.

I can’t comment on all the reasons that Jesus brought his fellowship of men together. I can offer that He knew dark hours lay ahead when the company of trusted friends would be of great comfort. And I’m sure that the Apostles did bring a smile to His face, thus helping Him along the way. The Apostles couldn’t possibly comprehend Jesus’ trials, just as no one can completely walk in our own shoes. But having friends who look beyond their own steps to make another’s journey a little bit easier must be another one of the lessons to be learned from Christ’s example of fellowship.

Room to Chat: Lord, thank you for the comfort and grace of fellowships in my life.

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