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**January 20-21, 2012**
Hey, You Scripture-Memory-Mad Women!
I hope your Memorial Day weekend was wonderful and that your appreciation of our nation’s heroes got a fresh stir. I looked around our sanctuary on Sunday at all those who had served in wars and I marveled over the few World War II veterans we have left. My Dad was one of them and, had he lived, he would be ninety. Such a powerful part of our history was written in their blood. My dad lived well over half a century with a bullet fragment lodged near his heart. He took a hit right through his cheek and, ultimately, surgeons grafted skin from his hip to cover the severe indention in his face. If you have a family with a weird sense of humor, perhaps you can imagine that it was fodder for a few jokes, most of which he told himself.
Of course, heroes come in all generations and both genders. I have two framed pictures in prominent places in my office of women soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan who have done Bible studies on their tours of duty. Flabbergasting to me. May Christ hold our soldiers tight and let them lose neither their lives nor their faith and may He return them to their families as whole people, twice the wiser.
Well, Girlfriends, it’s JUNE! Our temperatures in Houston are already well into the upper nineties and we are experiencing the severest drought in decades. It seems that few areas of our country are free of something ranging from brow-raising concern all the way to destruction and devastation. What on earth?? I don’t pretend to know the details of what is happening around us but I really do feel that Kingdom history is being written in these days entrusted to us. I believe there is a bold dot on the divine time line representing this era with a label Heaven alone knows for now, but generations will talk about until Christ’s Kingdom comes. We must stand firm in our faith and love twice as much. These are days when our words must be backed by our hearts or dismissed entirely by the world. Remember Christ’s warning in Matthew 24:12 that the hearts of many will grow cold. Our love will not endure extended seasons of difficulty by accident. In our self-protectiveness, the first natural casualty will be our emotions. We will either set our hearts on things above (Col. 3:1) where Christ is seated at the right hand of God, or we’ll lose our footing here below.
We are called to live by faith and to love by faith.
Part of how we stand firm is to know Scripture, and not with swollen heads but swollen hearts. One of the verses in my quiet time this morning was Psalm 119:57 – “The LORD is my source of security. I have determined to follow Your instructions.” (The NET Bible) One thing is certain: we are finding out how little security this anguishing planet can offer us. “The LORD is the source of security.” Personal. National. Global. Universal. The Lord alone. And, so, like never before, we need to know His instructions…and follow them.
One of my favorite portions of the Book of James has turned out to be the last half of 5:11 – “…you have seen the Lord’s purpose, that the Lord is full of compassion and mercy.” The Lord cannot set aside His compassion and mercy to deal with this world. Oh, I’m not saying He won’t ultimately deal with this world. His Word promises that He will. But I am saying that He cannot set aside His compassion and mercy to do it. They are elements of His immutable character and the first descriptions He used to introduce Himself to Moses by name in Exodus 34:6-7.
OK, Sisters. I better get to our purpose here on this first of June. The pages are flying off the calendar like leaves in the wind and it’s time for our 11th verse! God has had me in 2 Timothy recently for my memory work so here’s mine this time around:
Beth, Houston. “Because of this, in fact, I suffer as I do. But I am not ashamed, because I know the one in whom my faith is set and I am convinced that He is able to protect what has been entrusted to me until that day.” 2 Timothy 1:12 The NET Bible
You can bet your life on it.
You are treasured here. May Christ continue to captivate you. He loves you so much.
PS. OK, I can’t stand it anymore. SO HOW ABOUT THAT TIMER AT THE TOP OF THIS POST???? That, my beloved Siestas, is exactly how much time we have to go until our SSMT celebration! Wooooooohoooooooo!!! Bring it, Jesus! Kudos to my wonderful coworker, Kimberly McMahon, for making that happen. I told her I thought we needed a little extra incentive for this second half of our Scripture memory commitment. I WANT EVERY ONE OF YOU TO COME if you possibly can. With the numbers where they are right now on our 1st and 15th entries, we have room to fit all of you in our sanctuary. Save your money! Ask for it as a Christmas gift! Remember, the event is our gift to you but it’s not too soon to start saving for travel and accommodations. This is one of the biggest events on the calendar to us at Living Proof so please know how wanted you are and how loved you are. Celebrating a faithful work of God to a woefully dependent people was His idea in the first place. He loves festivals so, Girlfriends, let’s have one.