Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely , whatever is of good report, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, ponder on these things. - Philippians 4:8

Saturday, April 30, 2011


Do not judge according to appearance... John 7:24a (NAS)

      It was Monday morning and Mindy and Stella had gotten together at the park to talk. As they strolled over to the swings sets, Stella caught a glimpse of someone on the far side of the park and froze. Grabbing Mindy’s arm she whispered “Do you see him?”

      Slowly Mindy turned her head to see who Stella was talking about but she didn’t see anyone. “You must be seeing things again.” she told Stella, “There’s no one there.” “But I’m sure I saw him.” Stella told Mindy, “And he looked just as weird as when I saw him yesterday at church.”

      “Yesterday at church?” Mindy thought out loud. “You’re not talking about that weird looking kid that sat in the back are you?” “I sure am.” Stella told her. “I always thought Harold was weird but that kid was really weird. Did you see what color his hair was?” “You’re right, Stella.” Mindy told her, “He is weirder than you brother, not even Harold would dye his hair orange.” 

      “Are you talking about me?” came a familiar voice. It was Harold who had snuck up behind the girls and was listening to their conversation. “Hi, Harold, Bye Harold.” came his sister’s reply. “We’re talking about that weird kid in church on Sunday.” Mindy told Harold. “You mean the weird one with orange hair and sunglasses?” Harold asked.

      So, you saw him too?” Mindy asked Harold. “Of course I did,” Harold told her, “How could you not see him?” “Did you find out who he was?” Mindy asked. “No,” Harold told her, “He left too quickly after church.” As Harold and Mindy started talking about how weird the kid was, Stella started waving and pointing “There he is, There he is.”

      As everyone turned to look, Stella yelled out “Hey, what’s your name?” When the weird kid heard Stella he quickly disappeared. “Who does he think he is?” Stella said with anger in her voice, “No boy walks away from me without telling me his name.” “I’ll go see if I can catch him.” Harold said and took of following him.

      “Are you going to follow him too?” Mindy asked Stella. “Are you crazy?” Stella replied, “I don’t want to be any where around him.” “But,” Mindy replied, “I thought you wanted to know his name.” “I do,” Stella answered, “It’s Harold I don’t want to be around.”

      How do we see the people around us? Suppose someone comes into your church meeting wearing nice clothes and a gold ring. At the same time a poor person comes in wearing old, dirty clothes. You show special attention to the one wearing nice clothes and say, “Please, sit here in this good seat.“ But you say to the poor person, “Stand over there,“ or, “Sit on the floor by my feet.“ What are you doing? You are making some people more important than others, and with evil thoughts you are deciding that one person is better. - James 2:2-4 (NCV)

      Many time in the Bible we are cautioned about judging others.
  • James 4:12 - God is the only Lawmaker and Judge. He is the only One who can save and destroy. So it is not right for you to judge your neighbor. (NCV)
  • John 7:24 - "Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment." (NAS)
  • Matthew 7:1-2 - "Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. (ESV)
  • Romans 2:1 - Therefore you have no excuse, O man, every one of you who judges. For in passing judgment on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, practice the very same things. (ESV)

      Samuel was a prophet in the Old Testament who looked at someone and thought he looked good enough to be king but he forgot to look at the person the way God does. Now the Lord said to Samuel, “You have mourned long enough for Saul. I have rejected him as king of Israel, so fill your flask with olive oil and go to Bethlehem. Find a man named Jesse who lives there, for I have selected one of his sons to be my king.” But Samuel asked, “How can I do that? If Saul hears about it, he will kill me.” “Take a heifer with you,” the Lord replied, “and say that you have come to make a sacrifice to the Lord. Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you which of his sons to anoint for me.” So Samuel did as the Lord instructed. When he arrived at Bethlehem, the elders of the town came trembling to meet him. “What’s wrong?” they asked. “Do you come in peace?” “Yes,” Samuel replied. “I have come to sacrifice to the Lord. Purify yourselves and come with me to the sacrifice.” Then Samuel performed the purification rite for Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice, too. When they arrived, Samuel took one look at Eliab and thought, “Surely this is the Lord’s anointed!” But the Lord said to Samuel, “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”- 1 Samuel 16:1-6 (NLT)

      I found this poem in my Encyclopedia of 15,000 Illustrations by C. R. Hembree.

I dreamed death came the other night:
And heaven's gates swung wide.
With kindly grace an angel
Ushered me inside.
And there, to my astonishment,
Stood folks I'd known on earth.
Some I'd judged and labeled
Unfit or of little worth.
Indignant words rose to my lips,
But never were set free;
For every face showed stunned surprise...
No one expected me!

      Here's Something to Ponder
  • In what way would you like to be judged?
  • How are you seeing those around yourself?

Saturday, April 23, 2011


But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. Romans 5:8

     It was a beautiful Easter morning as Helen Grey welcomed a room full of kids to her Sunday school class. "Does anybody know why today is such a special day?" she asked.

     "It's Easter today." Bernadette answered to which Stella added, "And the Easter Bunny hides a bunch of eggs for us to find when we get home from church." And Harold who's always hungry chirped in, "And he brings us baskets full of candy to eat." Not to be left out, Mindy and Cindy wanted to know if that meant they were going to look for Easter eggs for class.

     "You are right, Bernadette." Helen told her, "Today is called Easter, and a lot of the things that you kids mentioned are done on Easter, but that's not what Easter is all about. Easter is also called Resurrection Sunday. It's not about a bunny hiding eggs and giving candy to kids but about Jesus dying on a cross, being buried in a tomb, and than rising from the dead. Our story this morning will start just a couple days before the Passover."

     As Helen went on to explain that the Passover was a special holiday that the Jews celebrated every year, in remembrance of how God passed over the Israelites while they were in Egypt and killed all the first born of the Egyptians so they could be set free, Harold started making funny faces. "HAROLD!" Helen called out he sat up straight and stared forward with a blank expression on his face.

     "Now the Passover was just a couple days away," Helen continued, "and the chief priests and the scribes got together to plan a way to get Jesus and kill him. At the same time Satan entered into Judas Iscariot, who was one of Jesus' disciples. Now Judas went and talked to the chief priests and scribes about how he could help them by betraying Jesus. Than Judas agreed to lead them to Jesus when he was alone, and they payed him thirty pieces of silver."

     "Judas, you scoundrel!" Harold shouted as he jumped up out of his chair and soon everyone was looking at him. "Oops!" Harold said and sat back down and started staring at the ceiling.

     "As we continue our story," Helen continued, "the day of the passover arrived, and Jesus sent Peter and John to prepare a place for them to eat the Passover meal. "Where do You want us to prepare it?" they asked Jesus, and Jesus told them, that when they had entered the city, a man would meet them who was carrying a pitcher of water; and they were to follow him into the house that he enters, and say to the owner of the house, 'The Teacher says to you, "Where is the guest room in which I may eat the Passover with My disciples?"' "And he will show you a large, furnished upper room; prepare it there." And that is exactly what happened."
"Now when evening came, Jesus was reclining at the table with His twelve disciples. As they were eating, He told them that one of them would betray Him. Being deeply grieved, each one of the disciples began ask Him if it was him. In response Jesus said that, "He who dips his hand with Me in the bowl is the one who will betray Me. The Son of Man is to go, just as it is written of Him; but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been good for that man if he had not been born." After Jesus said that Judas, who was betraying Him, said, "Surely it is not I?" As they continued to eat, Jesus took some bread, and after a blessing, He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, "Take, eat; this is My body." And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you; for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins. "But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father's kingdom."

     As Helen continued to tell the story, Harold started snoring and soon he was snoring so loud that Helen had to stop. Suddenly Harold let out one loud snore and woke up but when he did everything had changed. "Where am I?" Harold said as he looked around, "This doesn't look like my Sunday School classroom. It looks more like a garden path." "Barney! Stella! Where are you? What kind of joke is this?" He called out but all he heard in response was some singing. "I hear you guys and I'm coming to get you," Harold yelled out as he started down the path, but before he got too far he was run into and knocked down.

     "Barney, there you are." Harold said as he stood back up. "Barney who?" said the one who knocked him down. "I'm Judas. Now out of my way, I have a job to do," and he ran off. "Judas? Judas?" Harold started to puzzle but than he heard more voices coming down the path and thought he would try and sneak up on them to find out what was going on..

     As He snuck up behind them Harold heard someone say, "You will all fall away because of Me this night, for it is written, 'I Will strike down the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered.' "But after I have been raised, I will go ahead of you to Galilee" "That's weird," Harold thought to himself, "that almost sounds like Jesus. I better follow them and see who it really is."

     Soon the voice spoke again "Peter, Peter," it said, "truly I say to you, that this very night, before a rooster crows twice, you will deny Me three times." "Peter?" Harold whispered, "Simon Peter? Deny Jesus? I would never do such a thing. Hey, they're moving; I'd better follow," and with that he crept along behind them in the shadows.

     As they neared a garden Harold heard that voice again, "Peter, James, John," it called out, "Will you please come with me into the garden to watch with me? My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even unto death." After saying that Harold was sure that it was Jesus who was talking especially when he hear Him start to pray.

     Feeling a little braver now that he was sure it was Jesus and the disciples, Harold went to ask Peter a question but when he got to them they were sleeping. "How can anybody fall asleep on Jesus?" Harold started to say but quit when he remembered that he was always falling asleep in church.

     When he heard Jesus coming back he chickened out and went and hid in a bush where he stayed until he heard a familiar voice. "OH NO! It's Judas and a bunch of soldiers," he said. "What's that scoundrel doing here? And why is he kissing Jesus? And why are they taking Jesus away?" Harold's head began to spin and he became scared. "I think they see me, I've got to get out of here." He screamed and took off running only to trip over a root and fall flat on his face.

     When Harold stood back up everything had again changed and instead of being in a garden he found himself in the middle of a busy street with his teacher directly in front of him. "Hey, boy, get out of the way," she yelled at him. "Teacher?" Harold asked. "Where am I?" " You're in Jerusalem and as for the teacher Jesus," she pointed, "He's on trial up there."

     As Harold tried to comprehend what he had been told a girl that looked just lie his sister came up to him and asked him if he knew Jesus. "I don't think so." Harold told her and turned away to look for his teacher but there was another girl asking him if he was following Jesus. "NO!" Harold shouted and why do you look like Bernadette? "Who's Bernadette?" came a familiar voice, and when Harold turned to see who was talking he saw his best friend Barney or at least he thought it was Barney or was it Judas or, he was getting confused. "Hey," The boy said, "Do you believe Jesus is who He says He is?" "I don't think so,"Harold responded. "They took Him away so He couldn't be," and as Harold muttered those words he heard a rooster crow and started crying, "NO!! Jesus, why did I do it?"

     After Harold had been crying for sometime, a man tapped him on the shoulder and asked him if he was alright. "They took Jesus, and... and I denied Him just like he told Peter he would do" Harold responded with out looking up. "I wouldn't worry too much about that," that man told him, "they're probably just going to kill Him."

     "Kill Him!?" Harold shouted as he looked up and found that he was talking to someone that looked just like his Grandpa. "Yeah," the man replied, "I've been following the trial really closely and I thought He might have been the Messiah, but..." "But what?" Harold wanted to know.

     "Well," the man continued, "from what I've learned, after they arrested Jesus, they took him to Caiaphas, the high priest. There all the scribes and chief priests tries to find some legal reason to have Him killed. They even tried to use false witnesses against Him, but none of their stories agreed. Finally they asked Him if He was the Christ, The Son of God, and He told them He was. Poor man, why did He say He was the Christ. Anyways, after that they began mocking Him, hitting Him, why they even blindfolded Him to see if He could guess who was hitting him. After that, they sent him to Pilate. I guess Pilate couldn't get anywhere with Him so he sent Him to Herod. Than, just a little while ago Herod sent Jesus back to Pilate in a purple robe with a crown of thorns on His head. Funny person this Jesus, He seemed so peaceful and calm through it all."

     As Harold listened all he could do is shake his head in disbelief. "Look, boy," the man interrupted himself, "Pilate is going to give a speech." Soon the crowd started yelling 'Barabbas' over and over again. "I can't hear him," Harold told the man. "What's he saying? And who's Barabbas?"

     "I'll tell you." said the man, "Pilate said he wants to let Jesus go but the people want him to release the murderer Barabbas instead. I think he's going to do it." As he continued to tell Harold what was happening the crowd quit yelling for Barabbas and started chanting, "Crucify Him... Crucify Him...."

     "No!" Harold cried out in response, "They can't crucify Him, He's Jesus," but his words fell on deaf ears. Soon he saw a beat up man trying to carry a cross down the street by him. As the man approached he could see it was Jesus, and he was falling down because he was so weak. Than somebody came up behind him and shoved him out into the street and told him to carry the cross for him. As Harold picked up the cross he turned to Jesus and said "You can stop them, I know you can." but Jesus never responded.

     Soon they came to a hill and he was pushed away as some soldiers nailed Jesus to the cross. "No! No!" Harold cried, " I can't watch." As he turned away another soldier asked him if he wanted to gamble with them for Jesus' robe, but Harold just turned away and cried.

     Several hours later he noticed it was getting dark, very dark, and as time passed he heard Jesus cry out from the cross, "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do." "Jesus? Is that you?" Harold called out. Than he heard Jesus cry out again, "My God, My God, Why have you forsaken Me? AAAHHH!!" and with those words the ground began to shake. "Jesus," Harold called out, "Jesus don't die. No, Jesus, don't die. No, Jesus don't die, don't die," Harold started to back away in fear and tripped over a rock and fell out of his chair and onto the floor. "Harold! Harold!" Helen yelled at him, "You've been sleeping in class again." "But I wasn't sleeping," Harold protested, "I was there! I saw them crucify Jesus. "You were sleeping, Harold." His sister Stella told him, "There is no way you could have been there and saw Jesus die."

     "Ahem!" Helen injected, "Shall we continue?" Quietly Harold and Stella shook their heads yes and sat quietly back in their seats. "Now when the evening had come," Helen went on to tell the class, "There was a disciple of Jesus named Joseph. He was a rich man from Arimatheae and he went to Pilate and asked him for Jesus' body. After Pilate made sure the Jesus was dead, he gave it to him and Joseph took the body and wrapped it in cloth, and laid it in his tomb which he had made out of rock. Than a large stone was rolled in front of the door and the priests had guards put at the tomb."

     As Helen moved the story forward to the first day of the week Harold blew some pepper at his sister and Stella started sneezing uncontrollably. When she finally sneezed her last sneeze, she looked around her and found that everyone had disappeared, in fact, her classroom had even disappeared. "This can't be happening to me." she thought. "Things like this only happen to Harold. He must be behind this."

     As Stella started wondering about trying to figure out where she was and what had happened she heard two familiar voices. "Hup two, Hup two" they kept saying, "Hup two, Hup two." As she headed towards the voices she heard the one which sounded like Barney say "This is kind of silly watching a grave. What do they think this man is going to do, walk away?" "Yeah," replied the other voice, "I've never seen a dead man walk yet."

     As Stella got ready to yell at her brother, or at least the one she thought was her brother a bright light started to shine all around her. Than the ground began to shake and as she came into a clearing she saw a huge stone start rolling away from the entrance to a tomb, and, and, a body came out and , and "It's Jesus!" she exclaimed, "He's Alice!". Upon hearing that the soldiers hightailed it out of there knocking Stella down in the process.

     As Stella rolled over onto her back she found herself looking up at her Grandma. "Are you okay little girl?" the woman asked as she reached out to Stella up." "Huh?" Stella mumbled as she brushed herself off, "What happened Grandma Grey? where am I? And why are you dressed funny?"

     "Grandma Grey?" the woman said with a puzzled look, "No, I Mary Magdalene. I've come to anoint Jesus' body with these spices. I just hope the guards can roll the stone away. Why don't you come with me, little girl, and help me and... " She stops abruptly and looks up. "The stone, it's moved! we can go, Let's go! The next thing she knew, Stella was being drug along into the tomb but when they entered it, the body was gone and an angel was sitting in there and told them that Jesus was risen and that they should go tell the disciples.

     Not sure what she should believe, the woman started crying "Where oh where did they take the body?" she sobbed. "Why don't you ask that man over there?" Stella said trying not to cry herself. "Why are you crying?" the man said as he walked over to them. "The body is gone." the woman said "Can you tell me where it is?" but instead of telling her where the body was he simply said "Mary."

     "M M Master" came the woman's reply and she fell down before Him. Than Stella realized who the man was, it was Jesus. "Don't touch me yet, He said, "For I have not yet ascended to My Father, but go to My disciples and tell them I ascend unto My Father and your Father and to My God and your God."

     Excited now, the woman tugged at Stella's shirt "Let's go," she said, "Let's go tell the disciples." As they took off to find them Stella tripped over a rock and fell out of her chair. "Mary, Mary, wait for me." Stella called out as she stood herself back up but now she was back in her classroom and everyone was staring at her. With her face turning bright red, she quietly sat back in her chair as Helen finished her story.

     "Afterward," Helen went on, "He appeared to the elven as they sat to eat and chewed them out for their unbelief and harness of heart because they didn't believe those that had seen Him after he had risen. And He told them to go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believes and is baptized shall be saved but he that doesn't believe will be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe. In my name they will be able to cast out devils and they shall speak in tongues, they'll be bit by snakes or drink poison and it will not hurt them, they will lay their hands on the sick and they will be healed. So after the Jesus had spoken to them, He was taken up to heaven in a cloud and sat down on the right hand of God."

     As the class ended Bernadette came over to Stella and asked her what happened when she sneezed and why she was calling for Mary. "I was there!" Stella replied, "I was at the tomb, I saw Jesus rise from the grave, I saw Mary Magdalene!! Bernadette, Jesus really is ALIVE!"

     Here's Something to Ponder
  • How would you have responded had you been at the crucifixion
  • What would it have been like to see Jesus rise from the grave

Saturday, April 16, 2011


I am amazed that you are ... believing something different... Galatians 1:6
      Randy, like many a preacher, was having trouble trying to put a title on his sermon for next Sunday and needed to take a break. Since the grass was getting long he thought he’d go do some mowing and headed outside to the churches shed but he never got inside. “Randy! Randy! Come quickly!” he heard some one shout, “We need your help. Hurry! Hurry!”

      As Randy turned to see who was calling him for help, Bernadette ran into him almost knocking him down. “What’s wrong Bernadette?” he asked. “It’s Harold!” Bernadette replied. When Randy heard that his heart sank for all he could think of was Harold had died while in the hospital.

      “Harold’s out of the hospital but his got Amnissieas.” Bernadette said as she tugged on his arm. “He’s home but he can’t remember anything.” “Harold? Amnesia? What do you need my help for?” Randy had to ask. “Because Harold can’t remember who Jesus is.” Bernadette answered. “Let’s go.” said Randy and away they went.

      When Randy and Bernadette made it to the Peterson’s backyard they found Harold mumbling something about trying to remember who Jesus was. “Harold,” Bernadette hollered, “I brought Randy to help you remember who Jesus is.” “Who’s Randy?” Harold asked, “Do I know him?”

      “Randy is the preacher at our church. He knows all about Jesus and you do know him.” Bernadette told Harold. “You helped chase a bird out of the church just before you got hit and lost your memory.” Upon hearing that, Harold started to remember. “I think I know you.” he said to Randy, “But I can’t remember anything about Jesus.”

      For the next couple of hours Bernadette and Randy tried to help Harold remember who Jesus is. They told him about His birth and growing up as a child. They told him about all the things he did while He was on earth and how Jesus eventually died on the cross for the every bodies sins.

      As the evening sun started to set, Harold finally told them he was starting to remember but needed more time to figure everything out and Randy had finally figured out his sermon title. He was going to call it Remembering Jesus. “All too often,” Randy thought, “The people in the church were like the Galatians 1:6 that quickly deserted Him who called them by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel and needed to be reminded about Jesus.

      God, by his grace through Christ, called you to become his people. So I am amazed that you are turning away so quickly and believing something different than the Good News. Really, there is no other Good News. But some people are confusing you; they want to change the Good News of Christ. We preached to you the Good News. So if we ourselves, or even an angel from heaven, should preach to you something different, we should be judged guilty! I said this before, and now I say it again: You have already accepted the Good News. If anyone is preaching something different to you, he should be judged guilty!
Galatians 1:6-9 (NCV)

      Forgetting the good news of Jesus and the ways of God is a common problem It appears to happen in the Pupperville Church and when you look through the Bible you find that it was a problem than too.
  • Psalms 106:12-15 - Then the people believed what the Lord said, and they sang praises to him. But they quickly forgot what he had done; they did not wait for his advice. They became greedy for food in the desert, and they tested God there. So he gave them what they wanted, but he also sent a terrible disease among them. (NCV)
  • Galatians 4:8-9 - In the past you did not know God. You were slaves to gods that were not real. But now you know the true God. Really, it is God who knows you. So why do you turn back to those weak and useless rules you followed before? Do you want to be slaves to those things again? (NCV)
  • Hebrews 5:12-14 - You have been believers so long now that you ought to be teaching others. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the basic things about God’s word. You are like babies who need milk and cannot eat solid food. For someone who lives on milk is still an infant and doesn’t know how to do what is right. Solid food is for those who are mature, who through training have the skill to recognize the difference between right and wrong. (NLT)
      Bernadette and the rest of Harold's friends need to get the preacher to tell Harold about the ggod news of Jesus, but why? Should we not all have the knowledge to share the good news of Jesus and God's ways? After all, we do have the Bible readily available to learn from and check things out to make sure what is know is correct..
  • Romans 15:4 - For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. (NAS)
  • Acts 17:10-12 - That very night the believers sent Paul and Silas to Berea. When they arrived there, they went to the Jewish synagogue. And the people of Berea were more open-minded than those in Thessalonica, and they listened eagerly to Paul’s message. They searched the Scriptures day after day to see if Paul and Silas were teaching the truth. As a result, many Jews believed, as did many of the prominent Greek women and men. (NLT)
      Of course, we could know the Bible inside out and never tell anyone the good news but we are suppose too.
  • Mark 16:15 - Jesus said to his followers, “Go everywhere in the world, and tell the Good News to everyone. (NCV)
  • 2 Timothy 4:2 - Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching. (NLT)
  • Romans 10:13-14 - Anyone who calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved. But how shall they ask him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? (TLB)
      Here's Something to Ponder
  • Are you learning or ignoring the good news of Jesus
  • Are you looking for ways to share that good news

Saturday, April 9, 2011


Remember Jesus Christ, - 2 Timothy 2:8a (NCV)

      It had been two weeks since Harold’s accident put him in the hospital and Stella had been enjoying every minute of it. Not that she wanted to see her brother Harold in the hospital but for two weeks Harold had not been able to play any mean tricks on her. Not only that but for two weeks she had the house to her self because her parents spent most of their time at the hospital. That was all about to change.

      As Stella walked around the house into the backyard she met up with a boy that looked like Harold with a big bandage on his head. “Hi pretty girl,” he said, “What’s your name?” “You know who I am, Harold,” Stella replied, “We live together.” “You mean we’re married?” asked a puzzled Harold in return. “No, stupid.”Stella quickly responded, “I’m your sister.”

      Just than Bernadette showed up. She had come to see how Stella was doing but when she saw Harold standing there she froze. When she got over the shock of seeing him she blurted out “Harold, you’re back!” Upon hearing those words, Harold wanted to know who she was, what was wrong with his back and what a back was anyways. Than when Bernadette asked Harold if he was feeling okay he wanted to know how you feel an okay. Stella told Bernadette he was just acting his dumb old self again.

      An hour later when Barney stopped by, Harold had even more questions like who Barney was, and why was his skin was black and why everyone keeps talking about his back When Barney asked him if he wanted to go play at their favorite hideout all Harold could do was shrug his shoulders and say “What’s a hideout?”

      As Stella, Bernadette, and Barney stood around Harold wondering if he was playing dumb or if he really didn’t know, it was Bernadette that suggested that he might have amnissieas. “Do you mean amnesia?” Stella asked. “Yeah.” replies Bernadette.

      “I have an idea.” Barney piped up, “Let’s ask him the question he always knows the answer to and never jokes about.” “Harold,” Barney continued, “Who is Jesus?” Harold couldn’t answer it. “Who is Jesus?” he asked “Do I know him? Do I know all of you? I wish I could remember.” he continued.

      “If he can’t remember who Jesus is, he must really have amnissieas.” Bernadette declared.“This is terrible.” Barney said “2 Timothy 2:8 says we are to Remember Jesus.” “I don’t know.” Stella said, “I think I might like it if Harold has amnesia.” “I think I might know how to help Harold” Bernadette than said and she took off on the run.

      Remember Jesus Christ, who was raised from the dead, who is from the family of David. This is the Good News I preach,
2 Timothy 2:8 (NCV)

      How good is your memory? Do you suffer from amnissieas? (as Bernadette calls it)

      According to the Merriam Webster dictionary, "amnesia" as it it really called is difined in one of three ways
  • loss of memory due usually to brain injury, shock, fatigue, repression, or illness - This would be Harold's problem in the story
  • a gap in one's memory - This is what happens when we start getting...
  • the selective overlooking or ignoring of events or acts that are not favorable or useful to one's purpose or position - This is the one many have when it comes to Jesus and God.

      In the Old Testament book of Numbers 15:37-41 we read of one of God's commands to remember - The Lord said to Moses, "Speak to the people of Israel, and tell them to make tassels on the corners of their garments throughout their generations, and to put a cord of blue on the tassel of each corner. And it shall be a tassel for you to look at and remember all the commandments of the Lord, to do them, not to follow after your own heart and your own eyes, which you are inclined to whore after. So you shall remember and do all my commandments, and be holy to your God. I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt to be your God: I am the Lord your God." (ESV)

      Unfortunately, the people of Israel had a problem of amnesia and would forget what God told them as in Judges 3:7-8 And the people of Israel did what was evil in the sight of the Lord. They forgot the Lord their God and served the Baals and the Asheroth. Therefore the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and he sold them into the hand of Cushan-rishathaim king of Mesopotamia. And the people of Israel served Cushan-rishathaim eight years. (ESV)

      Remembering Jesus, God, His commands etc. is something the Bible reminds us we should do.
  • Hebrews 12:2-3 - Let us look only to Jesus, the One who began our faith and who makes it perfect. He suffered death on the cross. But he accepted the shame as if it were nothing because of the joy that God put before him. And now he is sitting at the right side of God’s throne. Think about Jesus’ example. He held on while wicked people were doing evil things to him. So do not get tired and stop trying. (NCV)
  • Ecclesiastes 12:1 - Remember your Creator while you are young, before the days of trouble come and the years when you say, “I find no pleasure in them." (NCV)

      Along with remembering, we also need to be a reminder to others so that others remember.
  • 2 Timothy 2:11-14 - This is a trustworthy saying: If we die with him, we will also live with him. If we endure hardship, we will reign with him. If we deny him, he will deny us. If we are unfaithful, he remains faithful, for he cannot deny who he is. Remind everyone about these things, and command them in God’s presence to stop fighting over words. Such arguments are useless, and they can ruin those who hear them. (NLT)
  • 1 Corinthians 4:16-17 - I urge you, then, be imitators of me. That is why I sent you Timothy, my beloved and faithful child in the Lord, to remind you of my ways in Christ, as I teach them everywhere in every church. (ESV)

      Here's Something to Ponder
  • Are you remembering what you are to remember
  • Are you helping others to remember

Saturday, April 2, 2011


So then each of us will give an account of himself to God. - Romans 14:12 (ESV)
     It had been a long day for Randy Smith. What was suppose to be a fun day helping the McDonald’s move into their farm house quickly turned into a day filled with sadness when Bill called to say Harold had been hit by a truck and was in the hospital. To make it even worse he learned that it was the McDonald’s that were driving the truck that hit him. Instead of helping them unload, he spent the day counseling them and praying for Harold.

     When Randy finally got home that night, he was heading to the kitchen to get a bite to eat before heading to bed, when he thought he heard Louie crying. “Not more problems.” he thought to himself as he headed to Louie’s room to find out what was wrong.

     “Why did we do it? Why did we do it?” Louie was saying over and over when Randy stopped outside his door and than he let out a loud scream when Randy called his name. “Who are you talking to?” Randy asked. Half afraid to answer, Louie said “I’m t-t-t-talking to G-G-G-God.”

     After a moment of silence Randy asked Louie if he was the one who had been hiding in the bushes when Harold was hit by the truck. “How did you know?” Louie asked in return. “Harold’s Dad told me someone was hiding in the bushes and I remember you saying you were going to be playing with him. Do you want to tell me the rest of the story?”

      “It sounded like fun,” Louie began to say “and than we ran to keep from getting in trouble and than, than... Harold wasn’t suppose to get hit by that truck. Is he going to die?” “I don’t know if he will die or not.” Randy replies “ But, what I want to know is why did you run?”

     “Your not going to repeat your sermon on Jonah are you?” Louie asked with a sigh. “Do I need too?” Randy asked in return. “No.” Louie answered, “I still remember what happened to Jonah when he tried to run away.”

     Running away never helps,” Randy went on to tell Louie, “I think you and Harold learned that the hard way. You need to be responsible for your actions. 2 Corinthians 5:10 says we must all stand before Christ to be judged. We will each receive whatever we deserve for the good or evil we have done in this earthly body (NLT) And you know what Louie? You won’t be able to run.”

     “What’s going to happen now?” asked a saddened Louie. “For you, you’ll be grounded,” answered Randy, “and for Harold, we need to keep praying.”

      So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord, for we walk by faith, not by sight. Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.
2 Corinthians 5:6-10 (ESV)

     In the book of 2 Samuel we read of King David and his departure from doing what was right for an evening of pleasure with a woman named Bathsheba. We also read that he got her pregnant, and tried to cover up the fact by having her husband, Uriah, come home form battle to sleep with her but he wouldn't and so David went to plan B and had Uriah killed, made Bathsheba his wife, and no-one would ever know the truth but plan B had a problem - God saw it all.

     As one continues to read, one learns that David was confronted by the prophet Nathan and ends up judging himself guilty of death. And while God spared David the death sentence, he still had to suffer consequences for his actions.
  • His first child by Bathsheba died (2 Samuel 12:18)
  • His household rebelled against him (2 Samuel 15:13)
  • His wives were given to another in public view (2 Samuel 16:20-23)
  • Murder became a constant threat in his family ( 2 Samuel 18:14-15)

     We would be good to remember that there are and will be consequences for what we do.
  • Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. - Galatians 6:7 (ESV)
  • So then each of us will give an account of himself to God. - Romans 14:12 (ESV)
  • God will judge everything, even what is done in secret, the good and the evil. - Ecclesiastes 12:14 (NCV)
  • But remember that anyone who does wrong will be punished for that wrong, and the Lord treats everyone the same. - Colossians 3:25 (NCV)
  • And I saw a great white throne and the one who sat upon it, from whose face the earth and sky fled away, but they found no place to hide. I saw the dead, great and small, standing before God; and The Books were opened, including the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to the things written in The Books, each according to the deeds he had done. The oceans surrendered the bodies buried in them; and the earth and the underworld gave up the dead in them. Each was judged according to his deeds. - Revelation 20:11-13 (TLB)

     Here's Something to Ponder
  • Actions have consequences
  • What are the potential consequences of your actions
    • For self
    • For others