Archive for August 2009

Dying Declaration

August 30, 2009

“So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, ‘It is finished!’ And, bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.”     –     John 19:30

 

Probably one of the most valuable pieces of oral evidence is known as the “dying declaration.”

 

I remember as a young police officer meeting the ambulance at the hospital to take the dying declaration of a man whose throat had been slashed in an argument over a parking place. Had it been necessary, I could be called to give that statement on his behalf in court.

 

The rationale is that a person facing death, knowing they are facing death, will, in those final moments, speak only things of truth and importance.

 

Jesus’ dying declaration is given to us in the verse above. Of course, He spoke only truth and things of importance, but these words should bring us great peace and comfort.

 

In His final moments on the cross, He was declaring our sin debt paid and His redemptive work done.

 

That’s a dying declaration we should love to repeat!

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“Let Your Light Shine”

August 21, 2009

“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”     –     Matthew 5:16

 

While on a mission trip, I was part of a team of people who were going into the community to invite people to the neighborhood church. Their attendance had dwindled down to the pastor, his wife and a few children they brought with them each Sunday.

 

I was sitting in the house next door to the church – right next door – and the young mother told me she, her husband and their small children would love to attend, but they didn’t think the church was ever “open”. “We never see any lights on over there,” she said.

 

It was true, the church did not have evening services, so the lights were never on.

 

I wonder how many times people – some very close to us, don’t know we are Christians, because our “lights” are never on.

 

Throughout the New Testament, we are told to “walk in the light, as He is in the light”, that we are to be “children of light.” In the verse above we see the reason is so that God may be glorified. So, make a conscious effort to let your light shine on someone today – and glorify God in the process.

Everyday Greatness

August 10, 2009

“Everyday Greatness” is a collection of stories originally published in Reader’s Digest. There are seven life goals, each supported by three values for a total of 21 chapters. In each chapter there are stories from people who have demonstrated the application of these values and principles in overcoming challenges in their own life. Each chapter closes with a collection of quotes on the topic.

Some of these stories are from the lives of people whose names you know, from Reba McEntire to Joe Paterno to Henry David Thoreau. But, most of them are from people whose names are not widely known, yet they have impacted the lives of others from Nazi concentration camps to high school football fields in Texas and beyond.

Each of them is a story of inspiration and encouragement to do what is right for the sake of right and to take stand when everyone else has left the field.

The collection of quotes alone is worthy of the price of the book, but the stories which are profiles of applied virtues are ones you will want to read to your children and teach your students.

“Everyday Greatness” is great volume for reference as well as inspiration.

(I will be posting a few of these book reviews as a member of Thomas Nelson’s Book Review Blogger Program J

Who’s your Hero?

August 7, 2009

Who are your heroes? Who do you try to pattern you life after?

As a child, my main hero was the Lone Ranger. I have photographs of me at about 4 or 5 years old, wearing the cowboy boots, the cowboy shirt, hat, and the six-shooter on my side. (Maybe that’s why it was so hard to transition to a semi-automatic!)

I wanted to walk like The Lone Ranger, talk like him and be like him. The trouble was the Lone Ranger was make believe. So many of our heroes are either not real (TV characters etc) or human beings with their own frailties and faults.

The Bible tells us, in Ephesians 5 to be “imitators of God.” We should desire to look like Him, act like Him, to love like Him. He is to be the hero we are to model our life after! Imagine what that would look like if you walked, talked, and acted like Him each and every day.

What a difference that would make in each of lives and those around us!