Friday, October 23, 2009

Loving Hands

Mark 8:38
Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.

A little girl sat beside her mother as she read her a story from one of her favorite books. While listening to her mother read she realized that her mother was wearing white gloves. She thought for a moment and could not remember a time when her mother didn’t wear gloves. This sparked the girl’s curiosity. When her mother finished reading the book she ask her a question, “Mother, why do you always wear those gloves?” Her mother replied, “Because my hands are ugly.” With a quizzical look on her face her daughter asks, “What do you mean they’re ugly?” “Well they’re all scarred and crooked, they’re just not pretty to look at,” was her tender reply. The girl asks her mother how it happened; her mother thought for a moment and then shared this story with her.

“When you were a lot younger, you were playing in the house with your puppy. You were having a good time when you backed into the heater. Your clothes caught on fire and you started to run. I caught you and forced you onto the floor and started putting out the fire with my hands. You didn’t get hurt, but while putting out the fire my hands received third degree burns. I had many surgeries to make my hands look better, but it only made things worse. I began to notice that others would look at my hands, turn their heads and whisper to those around them. I became embarrassed about my hands and started covering them up so no one would see them.”

Her daughter gently placed her hands in hers and said, “Can I see them?” Her mother was afraid that if she removed the gloves it would frighten her daughter. Trying to avoid the situation she replied, “They’re not pretty to look at they’re awful.” Not easily swayed her daughter continued to plea with her. Looking at her daughter, seeing the compassion in her eyes she slowly removed the gloves.

Watching her daughters face for any signs of fright, she was touched by what she saw. Her daughter slowly felt of her hands and then lifted them to her face. Her soft blue eyes welled with tears and gently flowed down her cheeks moistening her mother’s hands. Both their eyes met and her daughter said in a quivering voice, “Oh mother, these are the most beautiful hands I’ve ever seen. Please, don’t ever cover them again.” They both sat embracing one another in silent love.

Have you been embarrassed about sharing Gods love? Are you afraid others will whisper and talk about you? Jesus’ suffering was far greater than anyone can understand. He gave His all on the cross. So don’t be embarrassed to share with others what he has done for you. Let His scars show so others may see and feel His love.

By Louis Edwards

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Three Elderly Sisters

Three sisters, ages 92, 94, and 96, live in a house together. One night the 96-year-old draws a bath. She puts one foot in and pauses. She yells down the stairs, “Was I getting in or out of the bath?”

The 94-year-old yells back, “I don’t know. I’ll come up and see.” She starts up the stairs and pauses. Then she yells out, “Was I going up the stairs or down?”

The 92-year-old is sitting at the kitchen table having tea and listening to her sisters. She shakes her head and says, “I sure hope I never get that forgetful.” She knocks on wood for good measure. She then replies, “I’ll come up and help both of you as soon as I see who’s at the door.”
Turning Points Magazine & Devotional June 2009 Pg. 46

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Under His Wings

Luke 13:34
…as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings…

My pastor while preaching one Sunday morning shared with the congregation a frightening experience he encountered as a child on the family farm. Early in the morning and as he turned over in his bed, he noticed a bright orange glow from his bedroom window. Jumping to his feet to investigate this unusual light, he ran to his window and saw the barn on fire. He rushed to his parent’s room, woke his father and told him what was happening. His father along with his older brothers rushed to the barn to release the live stock. Later that morning while looking over the damage, he noticed his prize hen had been killed in the fire. When they removed the hen, three little chicks emerged unscathed by the fire protected by a mothers love.

Most parents understand this sort of selfless love. When a little one is sick with fever, we’ll spend sleepless nights trying to comfort them, and if necessary take them to a doctor no matter the cost. Some mothers will risk their own life to save the life of their child. All mothers for a brief moment walk through the valley of the shadow of death, giving birth to a child whom they love dearly. On occasion a parent will even give an organ to extend the life of the one most precious to their heart.

There have been times in my life when I wasn’t aware of the danger that surrounded me. Hidden dangers the enemy had waiting for me, hoping to trap me and bring me into his snare. He’d lurk in the shadows, eager to bring me down into the pit of despair. Many times he tried to destroy my testimony for the Lord. Sometimes he would bring railing accusations against my character. He has tried to break up my family and leave it in shambles. The enemy has tried to make me question my love for the Lord. During these times of despair in my life, I’ve found shelter under his wings.

As a child of God, are you facing trials and dangers in your life? Do you feel that the devil has you in his sights? Is the pressure becoming insurmountable and you feel that it’s all about to end? Don’t give up, run to the out stretched arms of Jesus. He’s waiting to place you under his wings and protect you from all harm. His love to protect us was proven on the cross of Calvary.

By Louis Edwards

Monday, October 5, 2009

The Journey Home

Luke 24:32

And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?

I remember as a child living in north central Texas, my brothers, sisters and I looked forward to summer vacation. One summer was particularly exciting to us; it was the summer we went to see our grandparents. You have to understand, we hadn’t seen them for more than four years.

The day had finally arrived for us to start our journey east. It would be a long and exhaustive trip traveling from Texas to North Carolina. One filled with excitement, restless moments, urgent bathroom breaks, and five kids cramped for space. One question that kept popping up amongst us kids was, “Are we there yet?” I think that must be a universal question that has been passed down from generation to generation.

This particular trip seemed to be more challenging than others we had taken. Along the way we experienced car troubles, my sister got sick, and all of us got a spanking at one time or another. But in the end it was worth it all to see the ones we love so dearly while spending time together with them.

As a child of God talking of our heavenly home stirs our emotions, brings about a feeling of excitement, and great anticipation. Some of the exciting moments in ones life on this journey home can be the salvation of a loved one or friend. It could be the announcement of the calling of God on your life. The union of a man and woman as husband and wife brought together by God. It could be the birth of a child who was given no hope of survival, but became possible by the intervention of a loving Lord. It could be the answer to a long awaited prayer.

The journey home can also be filled with pot holes, bad curves, drop-offs, and unexpected delays. Things like life-long sickness, untimely deaths, divorce, job loss, spiritual disappointments, and the feeling of failure. The trials we face while on our journey home can make us feel like throwing in the towel and giving up. We’ve all experienced it at one time or another in our life.

The two on the road to Emmaus experienced defeat after the one they expected to deliver Israel had been killed. They had given up, thrown in the towel, called it quits and were even discussing it on their way back when Jesus showed up. The burning presence of Christ started filling their hearts. Despair and doubt started to flee. A newness of life started filling their souls, giving them great comfort and hope, a new outlook on life and their journey home.

As a child of God, when the journey home feels hopeless and it seems there’s no help in sight, just remember Jesus is with us on our journey home.

By Louis Edwards