Monday, September 21, 2009

Opened Eyes

A man walking to work one day noticed a little boy on the street corner with a box full of puppies. On the side of the box was a sign that read, "Methodist puppies for sale."

A week later the same man noticed the little boy with the same puppies. Realizing the sign had been changed from, "Methodist puppies for sale to Baptist puppies for sale," the man stopped to enquire about the change.

He ask, "Son, when I came through here last week the sign read; Methodist puppies for sale and now you have a sign that says Baptist puppies for sale.

"The boy responded, "That’s right."

The man asks, "Aren’t these the same puppies?"

The boy replied, "Yes sir."

The man asks with a puzzled look, "Well, what's the difference between last week and this week?"

The boy answered with a grin, "last week they couldn't see, this week their eyes were open."

Monday, September 14, 2009

Diamonds are Forever

James 1:3
Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.

Practically everyone loves diamonds, especially the ladies. If you don’t believe it, watch her face when presenting her with one.

I remember the first diamond I purchased for my wife to be, it was a promise ring with a diamond chip. Ok, so it wasn’t a cut diamond, but it was all I could afford at the time. When I gave her the ring and asked her to marry me, her face beamed with joy. I later learned in our marriage, that her aunt asked her for a magnifying glass so she could look for the diamond. Reflecting back to that time in our life, we both laugh at the moment.

What is it about diamonds that make them such a coveted possession? Is it the value of the gem? Could it be the brilliancy of its beauty? Maybe it’s the design or the prestige of owning one? Its cost can range from just a few dollars, to millions of dollars. Many people around the world desire this priceless gem. Its beauty has been displayed by royalty, and worn by the most meager of souls as a promise given. What ever it is that attracts us to it, the diamond is a gem that demands attention.

The diamond starts its arduous journey as a piece of coal. Subject to extreme pressure and heat over a period of years, later becoming a diamond in the rough. To the untrained eye it would appear to be nothing more than a stone, but to a gemologist it’s a jewel in the making. Not all diamonds make it to the display case of the jewelers to show forth its beauty, some are used for industrial purposes.

The creation of a beautifully cut gem like a diamond requires years of training and skill. With this knowledge, a Master Diamond cutter can transform what would appear to most as an ordinary stone, into a beautiful master piece for all to admire. First he examines the stone for any flaws that may obscure its beauty. If any are found, the stone will be carefully marked to remove them during the cutting process. Next he will draw a blue print of the master piece he’s creating. Once all steps have been completed, he will begin shaping the stone to bring out the beauty for which it was designed.

In the early stages of our development as a child of God, we were nothing more than an old chunk of coal. But through the fiery trails and pressures in our life, they start shaping us into a diamond in the rough. Then the Master takes us into his hands and starts cutting away the flaws, removing the rough edges, and places us on the cutters wheel. When all is finished, He will examine us for brilliancy, color, and grade; later to be sent to a jeweler and placed into a set for all to see.

If the trials of you faith are wearing you down, and it seems like there is no hope. Just remember, you are a diamond in the rough, placed in the Master’s hands. Let him bring out the best in you, so that all may see and glorify Him.

By Louis Edwards

Monday, September 7, 2009

When the Sun Sets

My wife and I recently received word of the passing of a dear friend and neighbor. We were in awe, and heart broken from the news. The words spoken earlier that morning from my wife continue to ring in my mind; “Louis she’s gone.” There were two other times in my life when those words rang out; the passing of my Dad, and my wife’s sister.

As the day passed on, I began to ponder memories of the past. You know, those wonderful times you had as a child or even as an adult; memories that seem like it was only yesterday. Like the time I was playing in the snow with my friends, when suddenly out of nowhere a snow ball hit me from behind. I turned to see who the sneak was that hit me, and there stood my dad grinning ready to throw another. That’s just one of the many fun memories I have of my childhood.

Other memories that come to mind are those that my dad taught me as a young man. Things like working hard for your keep; taking care of your family and keeping a good name. He often told me, “Son, you’re not rich, and the only thing you have in life is your name; so take care of it.” One of the memories of my dad is his love for fixing cars. He would often allow me to help by cleaning parts to the car, removing the engine, taking it apart and various other tasks involved in rebuilding engines. Because of his hard work, love for his family, and instructions in life; I too continue to pass these values on to my children.

The recent death of our friend caused me to think of the legacy she left behind for her family. Here was a single mother that had raised two girls without any help from the father. While this situation forced her to become independent and self-supported, she worked hard to provide them with the necessary things they needed in life. Because of this, both grew up to become fine ladies and are doing well for themselves and now have children of their own. One thing I noticed about her was her love for her girls, and especially for her grandchildren. This was evident by the love and support she gave for her family; legacies that I now see reflected in them.

Seeing the legacy she left for her family, and what my dad left for me, I think of 2 Timothy 1:5, When I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also. I wonder what kind of legacy I’m leaving for my children and their family. Will others be able to look back at my legacy and see God? Or will they say, my, my, my, what a shame? I hope the legacy I leave behind will be one that glorifies God. What about you? What kind of legacy will you leave behind?

By Louis Edwards