Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Hearing God

The young man had lost his job and didn't know which way to turn. So he went to see the old preacher.

Pacing about the preacher's study, the young man ranted about his problem. Finally he clenched his fist and shouted, "I've begged God to say something to help me. Tell me, Preacher, why doesn't God answer?"

The old preacher, who sat across the room, spoke something in reply -- something so hushed it was indistinguishable. The young man stepped across the room. "What did you say?" he asked.

The preacher repeated himself, but again in a tone as soft as a whisper. So the young man moved closer until he was leaning on the preacher's chair. "Sorry," he said. "I still didn't hear you."

With their heads bent together, the old preacher spoke once more. "God sometimes whispers," he said, "so we will move closer to hear Him."

This time the young man heard and he understood. We all want God's voice to thunder through the air with the answer to our problem. But God's is the still, small voice... the gentle whisper.

Perhaps there's a reason. Nothing draws human focus quite like a whisper. God's whisper means I must stop my ranting and move close to Him, until my head is bent together with His. And then, as I listen, I will find my answer. Better still, I find myself closer to God.

From The Daily Encourager To subscribe to The Daily Encounter, send an email with your email address in the body and the word Subscribe in the subject line to:

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Soon to be Gone

I think today's post is such a lovely tribute to our veterans. I can say that because I didn't write it. :-)

Men and women from WWII are dying at a rapid rate. Korean and Vietnam vets are passing too. Those brave men and women who fought or assisted our troops, such as medical personnel, are seldom recognized as heroes, but they are. Without their sacrifices, we would not be the nation we have been. Yet, many of them are like my father was, silent on the subject of personal war experiences. There are many great stories that are lost daily. They need to be recorded before they are lost forever. Have you taken the time to sit down with a relative, neighbor or someone in a nursing home to listen to the personal experiences of that individual? Or to tell your own story for posterity? It's a great gift for your family.

This story is appropriately called "Soon to be Gone." It is written by by CPT. Stephen R. Ellison, M.D.

"I am a doctor specializing in the Emergency Departments of the only two military Level One-Trauma Centers, both in San Antonio, TX and they care for civilian Emergencies as well as military personnel. San Antonio has the largest military retiree population in the world living here. As a military doctor, I work long hours and the pay is less than glamorous. One tends to become jaded by the long hours, lack of sleep, food, family contact and the endless parade of human suffering passing before you. The arrival of another ambulance does not mean more pay, only more work. Most often, it is a victim from a motor vehicle crash.

"Often it is a person of dubious character who has been shot or stabbed. With our large military retiree population, it is often a nursing home patient. Even with my enlisted service and minimal combat experience in Panama, I have caught myself groaning when the ambulance brought in yet another sick, elderly person from one of the local retirement centers that cater to military retirees. I had not stopped to think of what citizens of this age group represented.

"I saw 'Saving Private Ryan.' I was touched deeply. Not so much by the carnage, but by the sacrifices of so many. I was touched most by the scene of the elderly survivor at the graveside, asking his wife if he'd been a good man. I realized that I had seen these same men and women coming through my Emergency Dept. and had not realized what magnificent sacrifices they had made. The things they did for me and everyone else that has lived on this planet since the end of that conflict are priceless.

"Situation permitting, I now try to ask my patients about their experiences. They would never bring up the subject without the inquiry. I have been privileged to an amazing array of experiences, recounted in the brief minutes allowed in an Emergency Dept. encounter. These experiences have revealed the incredible individuals I have had the honor of serving in a medical capacity, many on their last admission to the hospital."

To read the rest of the story and view the photos, click here. It's a good story.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

The Auschwitz Album

I looked at a photograph album the other day with great sadness for all the innocent victims of the Holocaust. It is the only surviving photo album from the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland. These are the last photos taken of many Jews who were "exterminated" upon their arrival. This horrific time in history is now denied by many to have ever happened. Mankind does not learn from history, thus he tends to repeat it. This atrocity should not be allowed to disappear from history books. It is not a fabrication.


This Album memorializes the arrival of Hungarian Jews to Auschwitz in May of 1944.

It is the only one of its kind, and it is solely due to this album that we have a visual history of what occurred in the Auschwitz-Birchenau death camp.

The album was discovered after the war by an Auschwitz survivor, Lily Jacob, who donated it to Yad Vashem in 1980.

Now, with the aid of the Internet, it can be viewed by millions of people, anywhere in the world.

Click here to view the Auschwitz Album

If you would like more information on Auschwitz, click here.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Adopted for Life

Albert Mohler wrote a beautiful story on his blog about the adoption of a young Haitian boy. The story will both bring you to tears and make you smile, as he uses it to illustrate the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Adopted for Life .... and in Death

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Where Were You

Job has never been one of my favorite Bible books. I always found it very hard reading and Job's friends speeches incomprehensible. (Sorry, just being honest here.) But the last few chapters have always intrigued me. The ones where God asks Job, "Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth?"

The next four chapters extol some of God's awesome power and majesty to a chastened Job. I have always found these chapters awesome, but never as much as when I read it today -- very slowly -- in the New American Standard Bible.

God's wisdom and power make my, or rather our puny problems appear inconsequential. Whatever the difficulty that needs to be resolved, God is able to handle it. He is omniscient and omnipotent and he does deliver His children.

We are fortunate to have the words of Job to encourage us to seek to know God as He actually is and not as we tend to want to embrace Him.

When God finished speaking, Job, thoroughly humbled, said, "I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You." What a blessing!

If you would like to read any or all of Job in the New American Standard Bible, click here.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Hammering A Toe

Now, that might sound like a strange title but it's very apropos for this post. Those of you who are still subscribed to this blog (which I call MAP) undoubtedly know it has been a long time since I posted regularly here. I have been busy with life and trying to build up another blog, Jan's Funny Farm, in order to find a means to survive financially. Plus, I've had a lot of excess stress since my mother died three years ago and I haven't felt prepared to post on this blog.

It stays on my mind that I want to continue it. But in what capacity? For some time I thought of posting a Bible verse a day, but I was so overwhelmed with things that have to be done I never got around to it. Then I made a decision to post something, anything until I could figure it out. So at 10:53 am on Friday, January 15th, I dived in and just posted an entire chapter, Matthew 1. I didn't think MAP had any readers left, so it didn't matter. It was a beginning.

Now, at this time I had a recovering cat and a sore toe, but both were improving. I fed the dogs about 6:30 pm, Buddy on one side and Sam & Merci on the other. Buddy (about 40 pounds) finished his food and suddenly leaped at Sam's dish. One foot landed squarely on my sore toe so hard I thought he'd broken it. I screamed! Still, they had to go for their after dinner walk. It was a short one! When we turned toward home, Sam (about 65 - 75 pounds) started barking at something across the street. I stopped to peer into the darkness. Sam, highly excited, leaped into the air while swinging his body around. When he does that, it just about knocks me down. This time he landed squarely on the painful toe. I screamed.

There were two more incidents at bedtime. There was a lot of screaming that night. And during the next week because the mishaps kept occurring and the infection set in around the toenail. My recovering cat took a sudden turn for the worse. By Wednesday, pain, exhaustion and a couple of other health issues crowded out all thoughts of MAP posts. (Imagine hitting your thumb nail with a hammer. And then again and again and ..... Pain would cloud your mind.)

In the early hours of Sunday, January 24, my cat died. Before I could get dressed and bury him, I knocked a large spray bottle off a table directly onto my toe. It burst the sac of infection. I screamed and cried. Yet the nightmare wasn't finished. There was another blow to the toe to come at bedtime. Were there more after that? I can't and don't want to remember!

Although MAP posts fell by the wayside through this, my faith in God has not. When I can't sleep for the pain, I try to remember the good things God has done for me -- for us -- and praise/thank Him for it. Going through a painful trial does not mean He has abandoned us or is any less deserving of praise. In fact, our praise/thanksgiving is more precious at such times. It's easy to be thankful when things are going well.

The last few days, Ephesians 6 has been running through my mind. So today as I was reading it, I decided to share it with you. Ephesians 6 is the "Armor of God" chapter. I've heard a few jokes recently about needing steel toed boots, but what I really need is the armor of God to protect me in my struggle "against principalities, against powers against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places."

You can pooh-pooh this connection if you want or call it coincidence, but consider that I spent several days limping on a sore toe without incident and my cat was doing well. However, within a few hours of posting the first Bible chapter, things changed, and posting was soon neglected. Again.

I don't promise to post here daily, but I do intend to post more frequently. Even if only a Bible verse. Sometimes a Bible verse is all it takes to turn a cloudy day into a sunny one.

I know God does help us through the emotional pain of losing someone close to us, as well as through the pain of losing a beloved pet. And he also helps us through the physical pains of life, even when they seem overwhelming and God is silent. My toe is still painful and ugly but I am hopeful it will heal soon.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Psalm 148

Psalm 148 kjv

1Praise ye the LORD. Praise ye the LORD from the heavens: praise him in the heights.

2Praise ye him, all his angels: praise ye him, all his hosts.

3Praise ye him, sun and moon: praise him, all ye stars of light.

4Praise him, ye heavens of heavens, and ye waters that be above the heavens.

5Let them praise the name of the LORD: for he commanded, and they were created.

6He hath also stablished them for ever and ever: he hath made a decree which shall not pass.

7Praise the LORD from the earth, ye dragons, and all deeps:

8Fire, and hail; snow, and vapours; stormy wind fulfilling his word:

9Mountains, and all hills; fruitful trees, and all cedars:

10Beasts, and all cattle; creeping things, and flying fowl:

11Kings of the earth, and all people; princes, and all judges of the earth:

12Both young men, and maidens; old men, and children:

13Let them praise the name of the LORD: for his name alone is excellent; his glory is above the earth and heaven.

14He also exalteth the horn of his people, the praise of all his saints; even of the children of Israel, a people near unto him. Praise ye the LORD.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Psalm 46:1

This is one of my favorite Psalms. And it's a good one to review when you have one eye swollen shut and one painful, swollen toe that won't go into a shoe, and ..... This, too, shall pass, as the poem reminds us.

Psalm 46:1 KJV

To the chief Musician for the sons of Korah, A Song upon Alamoth.
1. God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
2 Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;
3 Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah.
4 There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the most High.
5 God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved: God shall help her, and that right early.
6 The heathen raged, the kingdoms were moved: he uttered his voice, the earth melted.
7 The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah.
8 Come, behold the works of the LORD, what desolations he hath made in the earth.
9 He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth; he breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear in sunder; he burneth the chariot in the fire.
10 Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.
11 The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Psalm 103

If anyone wonders why I posted Matthew 1, then Matthew 2, and now Psalm 103 --

I am trying to get myself back in the habit of posting on mercyandpercy and if a Bible verse or chapter is all I can manage on any given day, I decided to go with it. As I can, I will be posting other items. If I am the only one who reads MAP postings, so be it. I'm not doing this for readers. I'm doing this to acknowledge God in my life.

Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name.
2Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:
3Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases;
4Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies;
5Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle's.
6The LORD executeth righteousness and judgment for all that are oppressed.
7He made known his ways unto Moses, his acts unto the children of Israel.
8The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy.
9He will not always chide: neither will he keep his anger for ever.
10He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities.
11For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.
12As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.
13Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear him.
14For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.
15As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth.
16For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more.
17But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him, and his righteousness unto children's children;
18To such as keep his covenant, and to those that remember his commandments to do them.
19The LORD hath prepared his throne in the heavens; and his kingdom ruleth over all.
20Bless the LORD, ye his angels, that excel in strength, that do his commandments, hearkening unto the voice of his word.
21Bless ye the LORD, all ye his hosts; ye ministers of his, that do his pleasure.
22Bless the LORD, all his works in all places of his dominion: bless the LORD, O my soul.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Matthew 2

1Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,

2Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.

3When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.

4And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born.

5And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet,

6And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.

7Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, enquired of them diligently what time the star appeared.

8And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.

9When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.

10When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.

11And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense and myrrh.

12And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.

13And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.

14When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt:

15And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son.

16Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently inquired of the wise men. Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet, saying,

18In Rama was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not.

19But when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeareth in a dream to Joseph in Egypt,

20Saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and go into the land of Israel: for they are dead which sought the young child's life.

21And he arose, and took the young child and his mother, and came into the land of Israel.

22But when he heard that Archelaus did reign in Judaea in the room of his father Herod, he was afraid to go thither: notwithstanding, being warned of God in a dream, he turned aside into the parts of Galilee:

23And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Matthew 1

Matthew 1
King James Bible

1 The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.

2 Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren; 3 And Judas begat Phares and Zara of Thamar; and Phares begat Esrom; and Esrom begat Aram; 4 And Aram begat Aminadab; and Aminadab begat Naasson; and Naasson begat Salmon; 5 And Salmon begat Booz of Rachab; and Booz begat Obed of Ruth; and Obed begat Jesse; 6 And Jesse begat David the king; and David the king begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Urias; 7 And Solomon begat Roboam; and Roboam begat Abia; and Abia begat Asa; 8 And Asa begat Josaphat; and Josaphat begat Joram; and Joram begat Ozias; 9 And Ozias begat Joatham; and Joatham begat Achaz; and Achaz begat Ezekias; 10 And Ezekias begat Manasses; and Manasses begat Amon; and Amon begat Josias; 11 And Josias begat Jechonias and his brethren, about the time they were carried away to Babylon:

12 And after they were brought to Babylon, Jechonias begat Salathiel; and Salathiel begat Zorobabel; 13 And Zorobabel begat Abiud; and Abiud begat Eliakim; and Eliakim begat Azor; 14 And Azor begat Sadoc; and Sadoc begat Achim; and Achim begat Eliud; 15 And Eliud begat Eleazar; and Eleazar begat Matthan; and Matthan begat Jacob; 16 And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.

17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; and from David until the carrying away into Babylon are fourteen generations; and from the carrying away into Babylon unto Christ are fourteen generations.

18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. 19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily. 20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. 21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. 22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, 23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. 24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: 25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Bring My Children Home

I received a link to a beautiful song I'd like to share. "Son, Go Bring My Children Home," written by Jerry Thompson and performed by the Rex Nelon Singers.

The music might begin automatically for some of you, but it didn't in our browser. There is a little slidebar in the upper left of our screen. We clicked on the second button from the left to start or pause the music.