Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Daily Bible Reading - Nehemiah 6

In the midst of a good work, Nehemiah has a meeting with a man by the name of Shemaiah. Shemaiah tells Nehemiah that is life is in danger and that he needs to go to the temple for his safety. Now this seems like good advice for the great man of God. His life is in danger, but the advice is evil.

In fact, Nehemiah was able to perceive that Shemaiah was a liar. Nehemiah response to this little incident was to pray (6:13). He trusted God to take care of him.

Fact of life – Evil men were trying to destroy the ministry of Nehemiah. They were trying to do it through intimidation and fear. If they could get Nehemiah to over react to the threat, they could destroy his reputation and therefore the work on the wall. It was a subtle attempt to stop the good work. It was an incident that no one would know about but Nehemiah. But if Nehemiah had responded wrong, everyone would know.

Nehemiah was wise and able to see clearly because he was a man of faith. And a man of faith never lives a life of fear, but of trust in the Lord. Nehemiah continues his good work and the people follow with him.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

VBS - Having a great time

We are having a great week at Vacation Bible School. VBS is always a lot of fun and a great time to teach our children about Jesus Christ. I always am amazed at the faithfulness and time that people are willing to give in sharing the good news of our Lord. I asked that you be in prayer for us as we finish this week. Pray that the kids will understand the truth of God's Word.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Bible Study - 2 Chronicles 28

Just a thought for the day. 2 Chronicles 28:19 "For the Lord humbled Judah because of Ahaz king of Israel, for he had brought about a lack of restraint in Judah and was very unfaithful to the Lord."

How often are we influenced by another person's lack of discipline or rebellion to give us an excuse for our lack of restraint? It is so easy to blame others for our unfaithfulness to the Lord. Trouble is - our Lord is not amused - he will humble you because your unfaithfulness - it is your fault, not the lack of discipline in someone else's life.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

I just finished reading this book this week. It is a fascinating book on lessons learned from people who live in Sardinian, Okinawa, Loma Linda, California (Seventh Day Adventist), and Costa Rica. Each of these areas have a high number of people who have lived to be 100 years of age.

They studied each group and came up with a list of lifestyle choices that seemed to make life better for these people.

1. Move naturally - be active without thinking

  • Balance is critical as you get older - work on strengthening your balance.
  • Go easy on the knees - you will need them
  • 30 minutes of exercise - five days a week
  • Walk, walk, walk, walk . . .
  • Plant a garden

2. Stop eating when you are 80% full

  • Eat food with low caloric density (fruits and vegetables)
  • Make snacking a hassle
  • Eat slowly

3. Plant Slant

  • Beans, whole grains, & garden vegetables
  • Tofu
  • Eat meat, but very small portions
  • Nuts - each day, but small amounts

4. Purpose Now

  • You need a personal mission statement
  • You need a people to share life with each day
  • Learn something new - never stop using your mind

5. Down Shift - take time to relieve stress

  • Life is short, don't run so fast you miss it
  • Reduce the noise (turn off electronics - TV, radio, IPod, etc.
  • Be 15 minutes early to all events - less stress

6. Belong - Spiritual community

  • People who are faithful to their church are happier and healthier
  • Social network is critical to good life

7. Loved one First

  • Family life is critical to happiness
  • Smaller house makes families closer - large houses people tend to go to their own space
  • Ritual in family - have a consistency to times together

These are the key points that the book makes for life to be long and good.