by Jim Ramsey
Mark’s Gospel is a “busy” book in which Jesus seems the busiest, moving from one event to another. In his “Gospel of the Servant” narrative, the emphasis is on the deeds of Jesus more than on the words of Jesus. One of those many deeds is recorded in the first twelve verses of chapter 2. It is an account that displays the extremes to which four men went to take a paralyzed friend to Jesus, the only One who had the power to change his condition. This “quartet” literally “raised the roof” to lower their friend into Jesus’ presence. Get the picture? They didn’t let the curious crowd that was in the way deter them, they didn’t let the necessary labor involved discourage them, and they didn’t let possible criticism and opposition diminish their faith in Jesus’ ability to help their beloved friend. Motivated by love, they found a creative way to accomplish the seemingly impossible task at hand.
By Joe Monds
I’m not a native Okie, but I’ve come to appreciate aphorisms of Will Rogers. He says,
“It takes a lifetime to build a good reputation, but you can lose it in a minute.”
By Andrew Calabrese
This may seem like an obvious question, but I want you to think about it anyway. Are you ready? Here it is: what is your most valuable, non-replenishing resource? The answer is—ding, ding, ding—time. You can always make more money, but you cannot make more time.
By Jesse Becker
Things change. The weather. The political scene. The stock market. Our health. Our families. Our attitudes and outlooks.
Near the very beginning, after God created a perfect world, sin entered in and everything changed. God’s relationship with man was interrupted, and the curse of sin prevailed throughout the universe.
But God set a plan in motion to reconcile sinful man back to Himself, and it all centered on the cross. For centuries those who believed God looked forward with hope to the sacrifice and salvation He would provide. And for 2,000 years since, those who believe God look back to that day when Jesus laid down His life and took our punishment — our separation from God.
By Teri Dorrell
This is the time of year when we realize how fast time flies! We have so many good intentions in January that were never accomplished because we didn’t “make” them happen. Making memories has to be intentional and purposeful. Life is about moments. Don’t wait for them, create them!
by Jim Ramsey
Ah, the subway! Allow me once again to reflect on a vacation experience (sorry no photos) that, believe it or not, I really enjoyed. I am a “people person,” and riding the subway in Boston was a time to rub elbows (literally!) with a great host of them as we spent a couple of days getting from place to place. What a blessing it was not to have to drive in the sometimes terrible traffic, and especially to avoid parking on the busy streets.
By Daniel Fleet
The words that we use are powerful and they have an impact on those around us. A hammer can be used to tear things down or build things up and our words are no different. The words we speak, text, or write can be used to nurture, heal, and protect, or, they can be used to ruin, tear down, and destroy. How you use your words will determine how successful you are in the relationship with your wife, kids, family, and co-workers.
by Jim Ramsey
Would you like the world to be a better place for your having been here?” This is the question posed by Ken Blanchard in his forward to Bob Bickel’s book Finishing Well. The premise of the book and its entire focus is on individuals who had a plan that they followed in an effort to make their later life one of significance, not just one of success. Bickel speaks of “Life I” when we have to “prove ourselves,” and “Life II” when we should “give back and make a difference.”
by Pastor Troy Dorrell
According to the data provided by a Harvard study on dietary habits to stave off type 2 diabetes, sometimes people may choose to live greatly diminished lives rather than change. That last statement is probably overstated and doesn’t consider a number of variables. However, it is true that Harvard researchers found that many people chose to suffer the consequences of refusing to make dietary changes in the face of serious health consequences. The point is that ingrained behavior is hard to change even when we have incentive to do so.
By Jim Ramsey
An old song written by Dottie Rambo just came to mind that says:
“The holy hills of Heaven call me to mansions bright across the sea
Where loved ones wait and crowns are given when the hills of home keep calling me
This house of flesh is but a prison! Bars of bone hold my soul
But the doors of clay are gonna burst wide open when the angel sets my spirit free!
I’ll take my flight like a mighty eagle when the hills of home start calling me.”
We should praise the Lord for the wonderful life He has given us here on earth, in this “dressing room for eternity,” if you will. The greatest thing, however, is that the best is yet to come! Here’s an encouraging promise from God: “But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” I Corinthians 2:9