Teens & Jesus at the County Fair

Last month I was a volunteer storyteller in the Little Red Schoolhouse at the county fair.   My job was to tell children the story of Jesus.  What fun!

The LRS, a ministry of Child Evangelism Fellowship, was positioned near the horse show, the pig races and the barnyard animals.  We met teenagers from 4-H Clubs and Future Farmers of America that were showing their goats or getting ready to auction their cows or lambs.  In between cleaning their pens and feeding them, they had time to visit us.

Consequently, instead of little children, most who heard the story on my shift were teenagers.  I was amazed at how many did not know the true message of salvation. Several did not know that Jesus had risen from the dead!  I told them we have a holiday every year when we celebrate His resurrection. “Can you name that holiday?”  Only one teenager guessed Easter.

Fortunately, all the groups that came to listen to the story were receptive!  They listened with interest. They asked questions. They learned that everyone who is willing to turn away from their sins and follow Jesus will have their sins forgiven. Moreover, they will also receive the Holy Spirit and all the fruit of the Spirit. They only need to exercise the fruit they will now receive. Now they will have the power to resist the temptation to sin.  “Do we need more patience?  Do we need more self-control?  Do we need more love?”  To each question they responded,  “Yes!

The teenagers prayed. They said they wanted to follow Jesus! Many chose to join The Mailbox Club and receive free Bible studies in the mail so they could continue to learn and grow in their faith.

I was impressed that when it came time to leave, each group displayed an attitude of gratitude and respect.  Perhaps it comes with training in the raising and caring for animals.

  • God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.    Romans 5:8  
  • Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under Heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.    Acts 4:12   
  • The Mailbox Club is an exciting Bible correspondence club designed to disciple children and adults. For more information:  http://www.cefonline.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=483&Itemid=100260/ 
  • What are your thoughts?  Are you surprised there are teens who don’t know the meaning of Easter?    
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    [This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:    http://www.whoisjesus-really.com/  and www.godlife.com
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We Came to Discuss an Abortion

It was another Sunday afternoon at the beach when a young couple approached our Bible table.  They were looking over our free Bibles and books when the young woman noticed the tiny metal baby feet pinned to our tablecloth.

“What’s this?”

I explained, “These little feet are the exact size and shape of a baby’s feet in the mother’s womb, 10 weeks after conception. This is also a common age for a baby to be aborted—at just 2 ½ months.

She immediately backed away,  put her hands to her face and broke into tears! Her boyfriend went to console her.  Then he returned and explained privately, “My girlfriend is 10 weeks pregnant.  We came to the beach to discuss an abortion.”

There were two men working at our table. They took the young man aside and talked with him for over a half-hour.  Meanwhile,  two of us women talked with his girlfriend.  We learned they’d been feeling pressured to have an abortion, but neither was comfortable with it.

That afternoon they both decided to give their lives to Christ—right on the beach promenade! We prayed with them and they agreed to start coming to a home group Bible study with one of the married couples at our table.  The older couple became mentors to the young couple, who soon married and continued attending Bible study and then church.

“Thank You Lord for putting us in the right place at the right time for that precious young family.”

  • For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.     Psalm 139:13-14
  • What do you think about this? Was it a coincidence that they stopped at our table? Was it a coincidence that she asked about the baby feet pin?  To leave a comment, click on this story’s TITLE, then scroll to the bottom.
  • Read how you can obtain a Precious Feet pin for yourself:                               http://www.hh76.org/default.aspx?GroupID=141
  • ONE BUSINESS IN LIFE –Quote by John Wesley, circa 1780; Remaining words and music by Kathleen

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[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:    http://www.whoisjesus-really.com/  and www.godlife.com

 

 

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He Loved God & America

It was World War II and 6-year-old Dietrich was playing with his brother when he saw the soldiers marching up the road. Their uniforms were a different color than the German uniforms.  He ran indoors to tell his mother.

“It’s the Russians!” she cried, as she grabbed the boys’ hands and began running. The soldiers opened fire, perhaps just to frighten them—because they missed. The little family continued running. They ran for nearly two years, begging bread and sleeping in barns and farmhouses.

While waiting to board a ship carrying refugees to safety,  Dietrich had a premonition not to go.  He hid behind a woodpile while his mother searched frantically.  It was after the ship departed that Dietrich came out of hiding. His mother was angry with him until they watched in horror as the ship exploded in the harbor.  Dietrich believed it was God guiding him that day to protect his family.

Their parents died in the war and the boys were adopted by an uncle in America.  Dietrich later married my cousin and became a successful businessman. He believed God had blessed him so he could bless others. They raised four sons and were strong followers of Jesus Christ.

Dietrich loved America.  He longed to see a tall American flag at the entrance of their little town.  The city council issued him a permit.  When it was erected, Dietrich and his wife celebrated by hosting a free tri-tip BBQ for the entire community!

When Dietrich passed away last month, there was no local church large enough to handle the expected crowd.  So they used the fairground! What a tribute it was to a strong man of God, a man whose kindness and generosity was inexhaustible.

  • One person gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.    Proverbs 11:24

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[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:    http://www.whoisjesus-really.com/  and www.godlife.com

 

 

 

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Why Did You Come Tonight?

I had a responsive group of minors in my Bible study at the juvenile hall.  I asked them why they had come.  Their answers were typical: “I need to find God” or “I’ve messed up and I need to turn my life around.”

I said, “Let me tell you why I think you’re here.  Jesus once said, ‘No one can come to me unless the Father draws him.’  You see God loves you and is drawing you to Himself—and you have responded.”

I noticed a couple guys wipe away tears as they listened. I added, “It could be that God is also drawing some of the other guys in the day room (who chose not to come) but they are not responding.”

About five minutes later one of the guys from the day room knocked on the classroom door.  He asked if he could join us.  A boy in the back called out, “Tell him why he’s here!”

Several new boys wanted to receive Christ.  It was a precious time.  After praying, one said with a smile, “I feel lighter, as if a huge weight has been lifted from me.”

  • Jesus said, “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them, and I will raise them up at the last day. It is written in the Prophets: ‘They will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard the Father and learned from him comes to me.”                      John 6:44-45
  •  I KNOW HIM – Click here to listen:

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[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:    http://www.whoisjesus-really.com/  and www.godlife.com

 

 

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Young Man From China Despairing

Recently as an online missionary for Global Media Outreach, a young engineer from China wrote.  He said his girlfriend had broken up with him and he was despairing over his loss. Could I offer any reason for him to go on living?

I encouraged him with Scripture and wrote out a prayer for him.  I urged him to sign up for our free 30-day online Bible study.  He did.

Five days later he wrote, “Every time I do the Bible study a peace seems to settle over me.”  Ten days later he wrote, “I’m still doing the Bible study and learning a great deal. I’ve been thinking less and less about my ex-girlfriend.”

Every few days he continued to write to ask questions or share new things he was learning.

One day he wrote, “I am overjoyed with the new life I have in Jesus.  I am forever a changed man.”  He now calls me his “Spiritual Mom.”

How privileged I am to witness the transforming changes God continues to make in lives.

  • Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.     James 1:17
  • Perhaps you’d like to take the free 30-day online Bible study:  http://www.30daynextsteps.com/  or check out:  http://godlife.com/
  • Learn more about Global Media Outreach:  http://globalmediaoutreach.com/about

[To leave a comment, simply click on the story’s title, then scroll down to “Leave Comment.”]

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[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:    http://www.whoisjesus-really.com/  and www.godlife.com

 

 

Posted in DOCTRINE, GLOBAL MEDIA OUTREACH, Other Religions | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

What is a Saint?

  • According to the Bible, a saint is a follower of Jesus Christ.                                              Romans 16:15,   1 Corinthians 1:2.
  • Scripture urges us to pray for the saints in Ephesians 6:18, not to them. The Bible does not instruct believers in Christ to pray to anyone other than God.   1 Timothy 2:5.
  • In fact, the Bible tells us that we believers on earth can “approach the throne of grace with confidence.”  Hebrews 4:16
  • We are to intercede for the saints in Romans 8:26-27 and help the saints in  2 Cor 8:4 and in 1Corinthians 16:1.
  • According to Ephesians 4:12, the work of pastors and teachers is to “equip the saints for the work of the ministry, for building up the body of Christ.”
  • Read more: http://www.gotquestions.org/prayer-saints-Mary.html#ixzz303bVMmFe

How Can You Know if You Are a Saint?

  • When you surrendered your life to Jesus Christ you changed from within.                        1 Cor. 6:11; John 3:3 and 3:7
  •  When you study the Bible it is for you personally.  Hebrews 4:12
  •  When you sin you are miserable.  John 16:8-11
  •  You enjoy being around other Christians.  1 John 1:7 – fellowship with one another
  •  You have a new awareness of sin in your life as the Holy Spirit begins to show you. John 15:26
  •  You love God’s Word and hunger for it.  1 Peter 2:2
  •  You desire to change your life, obey God and grow more like Jesus.  2 Cor. 5:17
  •  You desire to talk about Jesus Christ and share Him with others.  Romans 1:16
  •  There is an increase in testing and persecution.  Luke 21:16, 1 Peter 4:12-14 and              1 John  3:13
  •  You are almost constantly thinking about God.  Psalms 34:1
  •  You confess Jesus as Savior and Lord.  1John 4:15
  •  You desire to please God and obey Him.  1John 2:3
  •  Someone said that a saint confesses more and more—but actually sins less and less.
  •  You become more and more grateful for God’s blessings, beginning with salvation.

Does this describe you?                                                                                                            Would you like it to describe you?                                                                                                The following link will explain the basics of who Jesus is and how He can transform your  life: http://www.whoisjesus-really.com /

  •  These Inward Trials – Click here to listen:

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[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:    http://www.whoisjesus-really.com/  and www.godlife.com

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His Place of Blessing

Our friends Carol and Frank are retired with a fixed income. They live in a small house on three acres in a rural area. They love the Lord and wanted to serve Him in some special way.  Carol repeatedly felt the Lord directing them to step out of their comfort zone and do something bigger.

Their idea was to take much of their investment savings plus all of their emergency savings, and build a small two-bedroom apartment next to their home and share it with people in need. They would call it “His Place of Blessing.”

Carol decorated it with an American Patriotism theme.  Several friends donated furnishings, even a patriotic quilt!  She added a small bookcase containing a Bible and several good books.

Soon there was a call from the church secretary:  “An older woman who lives out-of-state has a son with a terminal illness.  She is a Christian and has called several churches asking if anyone could host her for a few weeks, as she cannot afford a hotel.”

Nancy was their first occupant. Daily she would visit her son who passed away after five weeks. Carol would check on Nancy every other day to see how her son was doing. There were opportunities to pray with Nancy and to encourage her.  She and Frank went to the hospital to meet and pray with her 49-year-old son who left behind a wife and three children. Nancy returned to her home after his burial.

Carol had just finished cleaning the apartment when three young men—college students from the Czech Republic arrived.  They came for a 6-week exchange program to learn English by immersion.  Carol and Frank simply loved these young men. They introduced them to their church and to the Christian fellowship for college students.

Carol found some Christian websites in the Czech language that the young men could enjoy:  http://www.whoisjesus-really.com/czech/whois.htm   http://www.everystudent.com / http://jesusfilmmedia.org/video/1_4432-cl-0-0/czech/the-story-of-jesus-for-children    A favorite comic in Czech:  http://www.chick.com/catalog/TractList.asp?language=Czech

Funny thing is,  “His Place of Blessing” is not just blessing people in need.  It’s blessing Carol and Frank as well!

  •  Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”      Psalm 20:4

[Reader: Is this something you might consider doing? Can you foresee any drawbacks?  To leave a comment, simply click on the story’s TITLE, then scroll to bottom of page.]                                                                                        _____________

[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:    http://www.whoisjesus-really.com/  and www.godlife.com
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We Moved in Together

I met Mario at the beach today. He spoke of his love for his 4-year-old daughter whom he gets to see three times a week. I asked if he’d ever been married to her mother.                 “No, but we were together for four years. We moved in together when we were 16.”

I said, “I suppose moving in with a girlfriend is common these days, isn’t it.”
“Yeah, it’s common. Everyone does it.”                                                                                           “Do you think if everyone is doing it, that it must be right?”                                               “Yeah, I’d agree with that.”

“Do you know what God thinks about couples living together when they aren’t married?”

“Not really. Do you?”

“Let me show you something in the Bible.”  I opened to Revelation 21:8 and let him read for himself … “the sexually immoral, etc … will have their place in the fiery lake of burning sulfur which is the second death.”                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         His eyes widened and he quietly said, “Wow!”

I said, “The Bible hasn’t changed, Mario. God hasn’t changed.  It has never been easy to obey God, but it is possible. There are some young people today who choose to obey God and honor Him with their lives. They wait until marriage before becoming intimate, and God rewards them for their obedience.

“Jesus once talked about the two roads in life.  He said there’s a wide road and many people are on it, but it leads to destruction.  Then Jesus said, ‘The narrow road leads to life, and only a few find it.’  Did you hear that Mario?  Only a few find it.”

He said, “But isn’t there a middle road one can take?”                                                             “There is no middle road, Mario.”

His expression became serious and pensive. Then, “How can I find the narrow road?”

I said, “Why don’t you sit with me on the bench and I’ll explain.”

A half-hour later Mario chose to give his life to Jesus.

  •  But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.   Revelation 21:8
  • Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.    Matthew 7:13-14
  •  GOD IS READY – Click here to listen:

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[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:    http://www.whoisjesus-really.com/  and www.godlife.com
Posted in BEACH, DOCTRINE, Love & Romance | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

I Was So Worried

I was leading a Bible study in Oakwood 4 – a wing at the juvenile hall. There I met 17-year-old Mario who wanted to turn his life around and follow Jesus. Afterward he asked me if I had been to Oakwood 3.

He said, “There’s a kid there named Carlos, who just turned 14.  He lives next door to me and is like my kid brother. We used to sit on the porch and have long talks. He’s never been in trouble. I’m worried about him over there with those tough guys in Oakwood 3.”

“Mario, you’ll be happy to know that a little while ago Carlos gave his life to Jesus. There may be some tough guys in Oakwood 3, but there are also some fine Christians there. When I left Carlos, there was an older Christian guy helping him look up Bible verses for his first Bible study lesson.”

Mario’s eyes filled with tears. “Thank you for telling me!  I was so worried.”

I said, “Mario, you are older and I want you to be a good influence on Carlos. When you return home and sit on your porch again, things are going to be different. I want you to read your Bible together. I want you and Carlos to begin praying together. Pray that your families will come to know Jesus. Will you do that?”

Through tears, all Mario could say was, “Yes. Oh yes.”

I left Mario with some recommended churches with youth groups that he and Carlos could attend.

 [To leave a comment click on story title and then scroll down]

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[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:    http://www.whoisjesus-really.com/  and www.godlife.com

 

 

Posted in JAIL & COUNTY JUVENILE FACILITY | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 15 Comments

How Do You Know the Bible’s True?

I was leading a Bible study with incarcerated teens. There was a new guy in my group—he’d just turned 14.  The others were 17.  Three years is a big difference with teenagers.

The older guys in the group had already come to Christ and were growing in their faith.  I was impressed with their kindness toward Carlos who had never before opened a Bible.

Right off he asked me, “How do you know the Bible’s true?”

“You have asked an important question, Carlos.  After all, who am I?  Just because I say the Bible is true, does not prove that it is.  That’s why I have with me, some helpful information that gives us some reliable evidence.”

Together we examined some pages of evidence:

  •  The archaeological findings that substantiate the Bible’s truths
  •  The scientific evidence
  •  The historical evidence
  •  The fulfilled prophecies—made hundreds of years before they were fulfilled
  •  The indestructibility of the Bible—for thousands of years there have been many attempts to destroy it, but the Dead Sea Scrolls found in 1947 were proof the Old Testament writings are the very same today as when they were written.
  •  Finally, we see the evidence of changed lives in the followers of Jesus.

At this point the older teens began to share how Jesus had changed their lives.  Older teenagers can have a profound influence on younger ones.  That, plus the Holy Spirit!  Fifty minutes later Carlos made a decision to give his life to Jesus.

  • All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.       2 Timothy 3:16-17

[Do you agree with this evidence?  Are there better examples I could have used?   To leave a comment, simply click on this story’s TITLE, then scroll to the bottom where it says,  “Leave a Reply.”]

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  • [This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:    http://www.whoisjesus-really.com/  and www.godlife.com

 

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