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  • Weekly Devotion | Glenbrook Presbyterian Church - Part 15
    Will my health be good or will there be illness Will my elderly loved ones still be here this time next year As I embrace my little grandson and he feels secure in the comfort of that embrace I am reminded that we need to let our Heavenly Father embrace us each day as well Our faith in Jesus does not mean we escape life s trials and tribulations but it does mean that Jesus through our Heavenly Father will be there to hold us carry us strengthen us and comfort us through them D Bruce Fligg D C M T S Gather the Clan and Make a Plan January 19 2011 in Weekly Devotion by hyperweb1 Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads Teach them to your children talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road when you lie down and when you get up Deuteronomy 11 18 19 NIV As I drove my teenaged daughter to school one morning we passed the local fire station There on their announcement board was the following message Gather the clan and make a plan As a writer I enjoyed the clever play on words But as I returned home I reflected on those words and what they mean in a Christian context The fire fighters of course were talking about devising a family evacuation plan in case of fire Fire stations encourage families to devise and communicate an escape route to ensure everyone gets out safely should a fire break out It struck me that as Christians we too need a family plan to ensure the safety of our family this time it is not a fire plan but a salvation plan Oh I guess that is an escape the fire plan Just like a fire evacuation plan our salvation plan won t happen unless we set aside time and decide how we are going to accomplish our goal As one Pastor friend of mine commented it doesn t happen organically you have to be intentional In other words our faith may not just rub off on our children Consider starting a conversation today about how to best teach and model Christian values in your home The support of a Christian community will be of tremendous help as you do so Ultimately it will be our children s decision whether to follow Christ and to be active disciples but unless the clan has a plan will we be successful D Lim The cure for disappointment January 10 2011 in Weekly Devotion by hyperweb1 When they had gone an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream Get up he said take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt Stay there until I tell you for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him So he got up took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt where he stayed until the death of Herod And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet Out of Egypt I called my son Matthew 2 13 15 NIV By now most of us will have taken down our Christmas trees packed away the decorations and resumed our regular routines I admit that after the beautiful music lights food and festive parties I am somewhat disappointed when it is all over Perhaps many of you feel the same This year God revealed something new to me in the Christmas story that gave me a fresh perspective and empathy for Mary and the disappointment she might have felt in the days and weeks after Jesus birth For most new mothers and fathers the joyous birth of their children is matched only by the joy of showing off their new offspring to grandparents siblings and friends We burst with pride as toes and fingers are counted and we recognize some of our features in the newborn face But Mary and Joseph were not allowed to return to Nazareth and share their excitement with their parents and village Instead they were told to flee to Egypt where they were to remain until Herod s death As a new mother Mary was denied the support and advice of her extended family and the comfort of her own home Instead she and Joseph were refugees in a strange land The trials of new parenthood would be faced alone It doesn t seem fair that Mary who had endured the shame innuendo and even the threat of death because of her pregnancy was now also denied a joyous homecoming with her infant son Nowhere in scripture does it record her reaction to the news that they were to flee to Egypt so we are left to assume that she accepted this news with the same radical obedience that she had displayed when Gabriel told her of God s favour In fact obedience seems too tame a word for her reaction For Mary wasn t merely obeying a command she was surrendering control of her life and destiny Never again would she be viewed in the same way by her family and community This year when I face disappointments I will think of Mary Her cure for disappointment was obedient surrender to the will of God and for that she was promised eternal blessing Will we have the courage to do the same D Lim The Gift or the Giver December 27 2010 in Weekly Devotion by hyperweb1 Read Genesis 22 1 19 This week finds us in the midst of a season of hospitality and giving But how would you react if a few days after Christmas your best friend came over and asked for their presents back Would you feel anger shock bewilderment or something else Having something precious snatched back is exactly what Abraham experiences in this week s passage In Genesis 21 after years of waiting Abraham and Sarah finally have a son Isaac was their long awaited miracle baby Their joy must have been immense Imagine their shock therefore when in chapter 22 God asks that the child be returned to him Genesis 22 is one of the most difficult and troubling chapters in the Old Testament For some it confirms a view of God as a mean spirited ogre For others it leads them to pit a violent Old Testament God against a much more kindly and gentle New Testament God While neither of these views is warranted even the most sympathetic reader can feel that God is dealing harshly with his faithful servant Abraham Throughout his life Abraham has trusted God and now toward the end of his life God seems to pull the rug out from under him Here in the final words God speaks to Abraham he says Take your son your only son Isaac whom you love and go to the region of Moriah For the Hebrew reader these words follow the pattern of the very first words God spoke to Abraham back in Gen 12 1 There God had commanded Abraham Leave your country your people and your father s household and go to the land I will show you In both passages God s words open with a command followed by a three part instruction that becomes more specific and difficult as it goes along In each case there is also a command to journey to a specific place For the ancient Israelite reader of 22 1 this specific phrasing was a clue that chapter 22 needed to be understood in the light of chapter 12 In chapter 12 God calls Abraham from the comfort of family and civilisation to a lonely and perilous journey to an underdeveloped and foreign land This is a journey with a purpose however for immediately afterwards God promises Abraham that he would possess a land father a mighty nation and become a blessing to the entire world Gen 12 2 3 7 In rescuing the local rulers from foreign oppressors Abraham showed himself to be a blessing to other nations Gen 14 14 24 Through all of this time however the more personal promises of land and descendants remained unfulfilled This changes in Gen 21 1 7 with the announcement of the birth of Isaac In Isaac Abraham is given the first proof that he will indeed be the father of a nation At the outset of chapter 22 however God seems to reverse himself Having just given him a son he now asks for that child back The text presents God s command as a test that relates to the promises we have just looked at In calling Abraham out of Ur of the Chaldees God called him to a life that would be lived so that others might be blessed the gifts of land and descendants were to be the means by which God would enable Abraham to bring blessing to the world The test that God sets before Abraham therefore poses a basic question Why does Abraham follow God Is it because of who God is or because of what he can get from God The fact that Abraham is willing to relinquish the child of promise shows that his love for God does not depend on getting things from God In the wake of Abraham s obedience God intervenes and through his angelic messenger reaffirms in even more expansive terms all of the promises made back when Abraham first encountered the Lord 22 15 18 For Christians Abraham s harrowing trial reminds us that we do not worship God because of what we can get from him we worship God because of who he is Like Abraham we have been chosen to bring blessing to the world and the gifts he gives to us must be held with that purpose in mind Eph 2 10 Understanding this helps us through those confusing times when circumstances might lead us to believe that God hasn t held up his end of the bargain The question Do we love the Giver or the gift is one that Christians need constantly to keep in mind At this time of year however we are reminded of the remarkable fact that in Jesus Christ the Giver and the gift are one and the same God himself came into our world to live and walk with us The words the angels spoke to startled shepherds tell us that in this child of Abraham the task of being a blessing to the world is fully and finally fulfilled I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you he is Christ the Lord Luke 2 10 11 B Irwin The Miracle of Christmas December 20 2010 in Weekly Devotion by hyperweb1 The King will reply I tell you the truth whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine you did for me Then he will say to those on his left Depart from me you who are cursed into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink I was a stranger and you did not invite me in I needed clothes and you did not clothe me I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me They also will answer Lord when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison and did not help you He will reply I tell you the truth whatever you did not do for one of the least of these you did not do for me Matthew 25 40 45 NIV Here in Mississauga a suburb of Toronto there exists an important ministry in the midst of one of Canada s busiest shopping malls This ministry is THE OPEN DOOR www theopendoordropin org a Christian drop in and information centre that for the past 31 years has ministered to people s practical emotional and spiritual needs Last year alone they had 10 000 visits to their centre For 25 years I have been part of a volunteer team of approximately 50 people from 20 different churches helping out at THE OPEN DOOR s annual Christmas Dinner This dinner serves about 200 people who are poor hungry alone etc For me this dinner is what the miracle of Christmas is all about These guests receive a full turkey dinner with all the trimmings together with some gifts During the meal there is Christmas carol singing a page ant and wonderful fellowship Truly the ministry of THE OPEN DOOR is an expression of God s love to these often neglected and forgotten people and I have been so blessed to be part of this ministry It is incredible to see the cooperation of so many churches who help donate cook and serve the food so that others can see Christ s love in action At this year s dinner there were 240 people in attendance and I have included a picture of the event showing the children playing out the pageant For many of these children it is the first time they have heard the story of Jesus birth For me one way of knowing God s love is being God s love to these people and being this love is what makes the Miracle of Christmas so real Merry Christmas and God bless B Fligg D C M T S Let there be light December 13 2010 in Weekly Devotion by hyperweb1 What has come into being in him as life and the life was the light of all people The light shines in the darkness and the darkness did not overcome it John 1 4 5 NIV This past week my wife and I went out to buy some mini lights for our Christmas tree The first place we went was out of stock of the colour we wanted The second place we went had what we were looking for and they were even on sale So we bought two boxes We brought them home took the first string of mini lights out of the box plugged them in and they lit up beautifully Took the second string of mini lights out of the box plugged them in no light My first thought was to take them back for a refund However my wife realized it could be that one of the mini lights was not connected in its socket so she started to check each light along the string Sure enough she found one mini light that was not making the connection and as soon as it was pushed further into the socket the whole string lit up Let there be light The theme of the Gospel of John is that if you want to know who the true God is look long and hard at Jesus As this gospel suggests the one whom we know as Jesus is identical with the Word who was there from the very start the Word through whom all things were made the Word who contained and contains life and light The same Word that brought light out of darkness before creation comes in Jesus Jesus in human form and brings into being a new creation challenging the darkness that is found tragically within creation itself During Advent and Christmas we celebrate the reality that the light has come Jesus has come and shines in the darkness and the darkness did not overcome it Let there be light Pastor Ian McWhinnie Wearing the Logo December 6 2010 in Weekly Devotion by hyperweb1 Speak to the Israelites and say to them Throughout the generations to come you are to make tassels on the corners of your garments with a blue cord on each tassel You will have these tassels to look at and so you will remember all the commands of the LORD that you may obey them and not prostitute yourselves by chasing after the lusts of your own hearts and eyes Then you will remember to obey all my commands and will be consecrated to your God Numbers 15 38 41 NIV Starbucks and Kraft Foods were in the news last week as Starbucks sought to end a 12 year deal under which Kraft Foods sells and markets Starbucks coffee to supermarkets and other retailers Starbucks is seeking the divorce because it says it wants to gain control of their brand and because there have been major marketing blunders that have eroded brand equity Companies the world over spend billions of dollars annually to manage their brands and to craft unique corporate logos that convey a certain feeling in the hearts and minds of consumers We all can instantly recognize the McDonald s arches and the Nike swirl each of which conjures a certain emotional reaction As Christians we too have a logo a powerful symbol yet so few of us promote it The symbol of course is the cross When we wear the cross be it as a necklace a lapel pin or a ring it proclaims to the world what we believe and to whom we belong It is also a reminder of who is ruler of our lives In the passage from Numbers above God instructs Moses to speak to the Israelites He tells them to attach tassels to the corners of their clothing You can imagine that as the Israelites walked those tassels would swirl around acting as excellent memory prods to obey God s commands Today won t you consider wearing the cross It will be a good reminder for you and excellent promotion for Christ D Lim Stones of Remembrance November 29

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  • Uncategorized | Glenbrook Presbyterian Church
    cherish the times we ve spent together including at least one game of golf every year up until last summer when he turned 89 he was still hitting the ball straight down the fairway We ve had many memorable times in the past 22 years including completing wood working projects together teaching me how to do plumbing connections and having lively discussions about alternative financial investments for his portfolio It was our mutual love for each other that made these times together so special However the most enriching times I spend with him are when we talk about his faith and love for his God and saviour Jesus Christ He has a strong faith which is very evident to me in the way he lives out his life I am so thankful for the love of this earthly father of mine and what he means to me and my family God our heavenly father loves us more than we can ever imagine I make every day a heavenly father s day by lifting up thanksgiving to Him for His love blessings in my life Colossians 1 12 14 reveals joyfully giving thanks to the Father who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light For He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son He loves in whom we have redemption the forgiveness of sins The Son in this passage is Jesus Christ when you believe in Jesus birth life ministry death and resurrection you are qualified to experience God the father s amazing love now that s a promise to be truly thankful for Submitted by Randy R This Sunday May 10 2015 May 8 2015 in This Sunday Uncategorized by Webmaster

    Original URL path: http://www.glenbrook.ca/category/uncategorized/ (2016-02-13)
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