Category | Food for Thought

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Mary is the ultimate example of a life yielded to God's purpose.

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In 1900, if a father put a roof over his family’s head, he was a success.
Today, it takes a roof, deck, pool, and 4-car garage. And that’s just the vacation home

In 1900, fathers passed on clothing to their sons.
Today, kids wouldn’t touch Dad’s clothes if they were sliding naked down an icicle.

In 1900, fathers and sons

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Back during the dark days of 1929, a group of ministers in the Northeast, all graduates of the Boston School of Theology, gathered to discuss how they should conduct their Thanksgiving Sunday services. Things were about as bad as they could get, with no sign of relief. The bread lines were depressingly long, the stock market had plummeted, and the

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“Praise be to you, O LORD,
God of our father Israel,
from everlasting to everlasting.

Yours, O LORD, is the greatness and the power
and the glory and the majesty and the splendor,
for everything in heaven and earth is yours.
Yours, O LORD, is the kingdom;
you are exalted as head over all.

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  • If you feel far away from God, guess who moved?
  • Fear knocked. Faith answered. No one was there.
  • What you are is God’s gift to you. What you become is your gift to God.
  • I am God’s melody of life and He sings His song through me.

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Jesus had no servants, yet they called Him Master.
Had no degree, yet they called Him Teacher.
Had no medicines, yet they called Him Healer.
Had no army, yet kings feared Him.
He won no military battles, yet He conquered the world.
He committed no crime, yet they crucified Him.
He was buried in a tomb, yet He lives today.

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The people stood yelling, “Crucify!”
and it breaks our hearts every time.
For Jesus’ death occurs every time
someone is ignored, mistreated, oppressed.

“Crucify!”
tears away at God’s Beloved.

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There is a time for everything,
And a season for every activity under heaven:
A time to be born and a time to die,
A time to plant and a time to uproot,
A time to kill and a time to heal,
A time to tear down and a time to build,
A time to weep and a time to

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What is Christmas to you?
Is Christmas all about shopping, waiting in line, going in debt, gaining weight, visiting relatives, and holiday music and Christmas parties?

Apparently a lot of American’s associate those things with Christmas and aren’t too merry about it. In fact it seems that most American’s have something about Christmas they they dread. Here are some survey

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“The absence of thankfulness does not mean that we are merely ungrateful. It means that we are missing the thrill of appreciation and pleasure.”

Shannon Pollack

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What is it in your life that you don’t really need?

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It has been reported that Susannah Wesley, the mother of John Wesley spent one hour each day praying for her 17 children.

In addition, she took each child aside for a full hour every week to discuss spiritual matters.

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Anonymous

An old man going a lone highway
Came at the evening cold and gray
To a chasm vast and deep and wide,
Through which was flowing a swollen tide.
The old man crossed in the twilight dim
That swollen stream held no fears for him
But he paused when safe on the other side
And built a bridge to

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“A garden is so much like a church. So much care and feeding. Such competitiveness among the plants — some of them literally choke each other to death if you don’t get out there and put a stop to it. The big gorgeous ones get lots of attention, but then one comes along that looks almost dead all season and

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The Parable of the Sower is a notable study of preaching, showing its differing effects and describing the diversity of hearers. The wayside hearers are legion. The soil lies all unprepared either by previous thought or prayer; as a consequence, the devil easily takes away the seed (which is the Word of God) and dissipating all good impressions, renders the

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PRAYER governs conduct and conduct makes character. Conduct, is what we do; character, is what we are. Conduct is the outward life. Character is the life unseen, hidden within, yet evidenced by that which is seen. Conduct is external, seen from without; character is internal — operating within. In the economy of grace conduct is the offspring of character. Character

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You say: “It’s impossible”
God says: All things are possible (Luke 18:27)

You say: “I’m too tired”
God says: I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28-30)

You say: “Nobody really loves me”
God says: I love you (John 3:16 & John 3:34)

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“In God’s sight, my giving is measured not by how much I give, but by how much I have left after I make my gift. Not by its size is my gift judged, but by how much of me there is in it. No one gives at all until he has given all! No one gives anything acceptable to God

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You cannot believe what you do not know.
You cannot respond to what you cannot understand.

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Whether he was born in 4 B.C. or A.D. 6, in Bethlehem or Nazareth, whether there were multitudes of the heavenly host to hymn the glory of it or just Mary and her husband–when the child was born, the whole course of human history was changed.

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Should Christians participate in Halloween or have an alternative? I am not going to takes sides on the issue. But should you want to do an event in October on Halloween or another night, a Harvest Festival is a Biblical concept.

Get Creative Youth Ideas: "Holiday Collection" ebook Holiday Collection
Games and Activities in Celebration of common Holidays.

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“Self-esteem is never self-made. It grows from the esteem of others given in response to all our lives produce”
Maurice Wagner in “The Sensation of Being Somebody” (Zondervan 1975)

Have you helped build the self-esteem of your youth?

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100 years from now, it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in, or the kind of car I drove…

But the world may be different because I was important in the life of a child.

Anonymous

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Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it. (Prov. 22:6 KJV)

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  • God won’t ask what kind of car you drove. He’ll ask how many people you drove who didn’t have transportation.
  • God won’t ask the square footage of your house, He’ll ask how many people you welcomed into your home.
  • God won’t ask about the clothes you had in your closet, He’ll ask how many you helped to clothe.

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“I have four things to learn in life:
To think clearly without hurry or confusion;
To love everybody sincerely;
To act in everything with the highest motives;
To trust in God unhesitatingly.”

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I’m skeptical of New Year’s resolutions. They’re too easy to make, rarely carried out, and often cover up what really needs to change. If we’re honest, few of us really want things to be completely different. We just want life to get better, or easier. We can handle a tune-up or face-lift, but drastic change? Medication, yes; surgery, no. Reform,

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“I wish we could put up some of the Christmas spirit in jars and open a jar of it every month.”
– Harlan Miller

“Peace on earth will come to stay, when we live Christmas every day.”
– Helen Steiner Rice

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“This Advent we look to the Wise Men to teach us where to focus our attention. We set our sights on things above, where God is. We draw closer to Jesus… When our Advent journey ends, and we reach the place where Jesus resides in Bethlehem, may we, like the Wise Men, fall on our knees and adore him as

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“Whatever else be lost among the years, Let us keep Christmas still a shining thing: Whatever doubts assail us, or what fears, Let us hold close one day, remembering its poignant meaning for the hearts of men. Let us get back our childlike faith again.”
– Grace Noll Crowell

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“The Grinch hated Christmas! The whole Christmas season!
Now, please don’t ask why. No one quite knows the reason.
It could be that his head wasn’t screwed on quite right.
It could be, perhaps, that his shoes were too tight.
But I think that the most likely reason of all
May have been that his heart was two sizes too

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Christmas is the season of Giving

“Christmas is doing a little something extra for someone.”
– Charles Schulz

“A Christmas candle is a lovely thing; It makes no noise at all, But softly gives itself away; While quite unselfish, it grows small.”
– Eva K. Logue

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I recently read with interest about some recent research by the MacArthur Foundation into the use of the internet involving 800 youth and their parents over a period of three years.

Source: Facebook, MySpace Beneficial To Teens by By Mike Sachoff

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Simply put, prayer is communicating with God. As a child of God you are invited to come boldly before His throne. ‘Since we have such a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God,’ the apostle Paul writes, ‘…then let us approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy

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Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveller, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth.

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“It doesn’t take a wise person to know that people long for more than earth. When we see pain, we yearn. When we see hunger, we question why. Senseless death. Endless tears, needless loss. Where do they come from? Where will they lead? Isn’t there more to life than death?

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“When it comes to irritations, I’ve found that it helps if I remember that I am not in charge of my day… God is. And while I’m sure he wants me to use my time wisely, he is more concerned with the development of my character and the cultivation of the qualities that make me Christlike within. One of his

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It takes a minute to find a special person,
an hour to appreciate them,
a day to love them,
but then an entire life to forget them.

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“Every Christian family ought to be as it were a little church consecrated to Christ, and wholly influenced and governed by His rule. And family education and order are some of the chief means of grace. If these fail, all other means are likely to prove ineffectual. If these are duly maintained, all the means of grace will be likely

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Have you ever wondered why the stone was rolled away?

It certainly wasn’t so that Jesus could get out — Later when the disciples are in the upper room with the doors locked, Jesus simply appears in their presence.

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Among the apostles, the one absolutely stunning success was Judas, and the one thoroughly groveling failure was Peter.

Judas was a success in the ways that most impress us: he was successful both financially and politically. He cleverly arranged to control the money of the apostolic band; he skillfully manipulated the political forces of the day to accomplish his goal.

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If everything is coming your way, you might be in the wrong lane!

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I think that I shall never see
A church that’s all it ought to be.
A church whose members never stray
Beyond the straight and narrow way.

A church that has no empty pews
Whose pastor never has the blues.
A church whose deacons always deak
And none are proud and all are meek.

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Great leaders don’t change the way we do things–they change the way we think.

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“The man who forgets to be thankful has fallen asleep in life.”
Robert Louis Stevenson

Get Creative Youth Ideas: "Holiday Collection" ebook Holiday Collection
Games and Activities in Celebration of common Holidays.

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The roots of the American Thanksgiving holiday celebration are found in the faith of our American Founders and Forefathers. For many people, like the pilgrims and puritans, it was the quest for religious freedom that brought them to America. Yet it was their faith in God that brought them through the tests and trials of day to day life.

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“Prayer goes by faith into the great orchard of God’s exceeding great and precious promises, and with hand and heart picks the ripest and richest fruit.”
E. M. Bounds

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“The prayer power has never been tried to its full capacity. If we want to see mighty wonders of divine power and grace wrought in the place of weakness, failure and disappointment, let us answer God’s standing challenge, ‘Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things which thou knowest not!”

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When you have to put up with mean people,
Think of them as sandpaper.
They may scratch you,
Rub you the wrong way
But eventually…
YOU end up smooth & polished

And the sandpaper….?
It’d be worn out & ugly!

Makes you think, doesn’t it?

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There are a lot of arguments against celebrating Halloween.

While many people believe we should redeem the event for Christ, others wonder, is a Fall Festival or Harvest festival just a replacement for the pagan holiday? I’ll leave that judgment up to you but here’s some food for thought for those who DO have a Harvest Festival as a Halloween

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Jesus Christ, the very Son of God, found it necessary to have definite and extended periods of fellowship alone with His Father. Who could be busier than He? His day was filled from morning to night, speaking to crowds, healing, holding private interviews, traveling and training His disciples; yet He found it necessary to have time alone with God…

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“I prayed for faith, and thought that some day faith would come down and strike me like lightning. But faith did not seem to come. One day I read in the tenth chapter of Romans, ‘Now faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.’ I had closed my Bible and prayed for faith. I now opened by

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“The vigor of our spiritual life will be in exact proportion to the place held by the Bible in our life and thoughts…I have read the Bible through 100 times, and always with increasing delight. Each time it seems like a new book to me. Great has been the blessing from consecutive, diligent, daily study. I look upon it as

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For teens, your presence will always mean more than your presents.

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“Your written instructions are miraculous.
That is why I obey them.
Your word is a doorway that lets in light,
and it helps gullible people understand.
I open my mouth and pant because
I long for your commandments.”
Psalm 119:129-131

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“Courage is the power to do well when the air is turbulent and the going gets tough. It is having the character to do well when things are tempting, when things are painful.

It is easy to be a mother when a baby is cooing and gurgling over breakfast; it takes courage to be a mother when the child suffers

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Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at something that doesn’t really matter.

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We’re important,
but not essential;

valuable,
but not indispensable.

We have a part in the play,
but we are not the main act.

A song to sing,
but we are not the featured voice.

God is.

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“If we will not be governed by God, then we will be ruled by tyrants.”
William Penn

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“It is impossible to enslave mentally or socially a Bible reading people. The principles of the Bible are the groundwork of human freedom.”
Horace Greeley

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It is the place where the worship is a time to be entertained
Where the tithe is whatever change you have in your pocket
Where the message is something to make you feel good about yourself
Where the hymn of commitment is “I Surrender Some.”
Where Instead of “Standing on the Promises” we are merely sitting on the premises.

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Let me not wait for the right place, the right time, to celebrate Your presence. Let me go rejoicing through my days, abiding in You and delighting in You, praising You now and forever.”

B. J. Hoff- “Faces in the Crowd”

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We need to learn this secret of the burning heart. Suddenly Jesus appears to us, fires are set ablaze, and we are given wonderful visions; but then we must learn to maintain the secret of the burning heart–a heart that can go through anything. It is the simple, dreary day, with its commonplace duties and people, that smothers the burning

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According to Dr. T. Berry Brazelton, a father’s involvement with a child increases the child’s IQ, the child’s motivation to learn, and the child’s self-confidence. In addition, children with involved dads are more likely to develop a sense of humor as well as an “inner excitement.”

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  1. Be a mentor to a boy without a father through Big Brother or some other agency
  2. Contact your local junior or senior high school to tutor a needy kid
  3. Teach Sunday School
  4. Become a leader in Awana, Pioneer Clubs, or Adventure Club

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“A good father is one of the most unsung, unpraised, unnoticed, and yet one of the most valuable assets in our society.”

Billy Graham

Get Creative Youth Ideas: "Holiday Collection" ebook Holiday Collection
Games and Activities in Celebration of common Holidays.

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“The way to God has properly been described as ‘letting oneself fall,’ and has been compared with the first flight of a baby eagle, pushed out of the nest by its parents, and then discovering to its amazement that the invisible ocean of light in which it is dropping is capable of bearing it up. The presence of God which

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“No man is poor who has had a godly mother.”
-Abraham Lincoln

Get Creative Youth Ideas: "Holiday Collection" ebook Holiday Collection
Games and Activities in Celebration of common Holidays.

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I will worry less about my children and trust God more.
I will commit them into the Lord’s care.
I will love my children unconditionally and let them know I do.
I will believe in them constantly and encourage them often.
I will pray for them daily.
I will teach them responsibility for their own actions.
I will try to

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Always keep your eyes open for the little task, because it is the little task that is important to Jesus Christ. The future of the Kingdom of God does not depend on the enthusiasm of this or that powerful person; those great ones are necessary, too, but it is equally necessary to have a great number of little people who

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After the christening of his baby brother in church, little Johnny sobbed all the way home in the back seat of the car.

His father asked him three times what was wrong.

Finally, the boy replied, “That pastor said he wanted us brought up in a Christian home, but I want to stay with you guys!”

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The evidence for Jesus’ resurrection is so strong that nobody would question it except for two things: First, it is a very unusual event. And second, if you believe it happened, you have to change the way you live.

­Theologian Wolfhart Pannenberg

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The life of Jesus is bracketed by two impossibilities: a virgin’s womb and an empty tomb. Jesus entered our world through a door marked “No Entrance” and left through a door marked “No Exit.” And for all who feel it is impossible to overcome the situations facing them—sickness, death, divorce, persecution, loneliness, despair, addictions—Jesus stands at the human door marked

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“The people who hanged Christ never, to do them justice, accused him of being a bore—on the contrary, they thought him too dynamic to be safe … He was emphatically not a dull man in his human lifetime, and if he was God, there can be nothing dull about God either.”

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“Somebody has well said that there are only two kinds of people in the world there are those who wake up in the morning and say, “Good morning, Lord,” and there are those who wake up in the morning and say, “Good Lord, it’s morning.”

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“To make the value of obedience just as practical as possible let’s play ‘Let’s Pretend”.

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I tried to teach my child with books
He only gave me puzzled looks
I tried to teach my child with words
They passed him by often unheard
Despairingly I turned aside
“How shall I teach this child?” I cried
Into my hand, he put the key
“Come, he said, play with me.”

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helen_keller_and_anne_ sullivan.jpg

“Life is either a great adventure or nothing!”
-Helen Keller

[PHOTO: Helen Keller (left) with her mentor, Anne Sullivan]

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“Even if you are on the right track, you will get run over if you just sit there.”
Will Rogers, Humorist

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The Church is a Hospital for sinners; Not a Museum for Saints.

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“People grow old only by deserting their ideals. Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up interest wrinkles the soul. Worry, self-doubt, self-distrust, fear and despair; these are the long, long years that bow the head and turn the growing spirit back to dust.”

Douglas MacArthur

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“If we work upon marble, it will perish; if we work upon brass, time will efface it; if we rear temples, they will crumble into dust; but if we work upon immortal minds, if we imbue them with principle, with the just fear of God and love of our fellowman, we engrave on those tablets something that will brighten to

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Hear, oh, hear! The Christmas bells are ringing peal upon peal, chime upon chime! Full and clear they ring, and the air quivers with joy. What is the burden of their music as it floats far and wide? Awake! Awake! it says. A great Change is coming — peace upon earth, good-will to all men….

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“Beware in your prayers, above everything else, of limiting God, not only by unbelief, but by fancying that you know what He can do. Expect unexpected things, ‘above all that we ask or think’… ”
Andrew Murray

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Labour mightily for a healing spirit. Away with all discriminating names whatever that may hinder the applying of balm to heal your wounds…Discord and division become no Christian. For wolves to worry the lambs is no wonder, but for one lamb to worry another, this is unnatural and monstrous.

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“O Lord, that lends me life, lend me a heart replete with thankfulness.”
–William Shakespeare

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Games and Activities in Celebration of common Holidays.

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“Pride slays thanksgiving, but an humble mind is the soil out of which thanks naturally grow. A proud man is seldom a grateful man, for he never thinks he gets as much as he deserves.”
–Henry Ward Beecher

 

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Games and Activities in Celebration of common Holidays.

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“We ought to give thanks for all fortune: if it is ‘good,’ because it is good, if ‘bad’ because it works in us patience, humility and the contempt of this world and the hope of our eternal country.”
–C.S. Lewis

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Games and Activities in Celebration of common Holidays.

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“The Pilgrims came to America not to accumulate riches but to worship God, and the greatest wealth they left unborn generations was their heroic example of sacrifice that their souls might be free.”
–Harry Moyle Tippett

 

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“Adore God. Be just. Be true. Murmur not at the ways of Providence.”
— Thomas Jefferson

 

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“A thankful heart is not only the greatest virtue, but the parent of all other virtues.” –Cicero

 

 

 

 

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“The worship most acceptable to God comes from a thankful and cheerful heart.” –Plutarch

 

 

 

 

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Games and Activities in Celebration of common Holidays.

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Arguments AGAINST Halloween

  1. Halloween originated as a pagan holiday, and it’s still considered the most sacred night for those involved in the occult. Much evil is committed on that night by people who delve into the evil side of the spiritual world.

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Perhaps to be able to explain suffering is the clearest indication of never having suffered. Sin, suffering, and sanctification are not problems of the mind, but facts of life-mysteries that awaken all other mysteries until the heart rests in God.

-Oswald Chambers

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Bernard Malamud wrote “Life is a tragedy full of joy.” Later, Josh Billing agreed and wrote, “Life is a grindstone. Whether it grinds you down or polishes you up depends upon what you are made of.” Then, Louis Ginsberg wrote: “Life is ever since man was born – Licking honey from a thorn.”

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Once walking through the twisted little streets of Kowloon in Hong Kong, I came upon a tattoo studio. In the window were displayed samples of the tattoos available. On the chest or arms you could have tattooed an anchor or flag or mermaid or whatever. But what struck me with force were three words that could be tattooed on one’s

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Money will buy:

A bed BUT NOT sleep,
Books BUT NOT brains,
Food BUT NOT appetite,
Finery BUT NOT beauty,
A house BUT NOT a home,
Medicine BUT NOT health,
Luxuries BUT NOT culture,
Amusement BUT NOT happiness,
A Crucifix BUT NOT a Savior,
A Church pew BUT NOT Heaven.

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Once there was a congregation in which every member was just like you. Each one cooperated and supported every church program just the way you have been doing. Everyone worked as hard and attended the same services and church functions as you do. The elders, the deacons, and the preacher were all as interested in the church as you are

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Man has made a start on the meaning of life when he plants shade trees under which he knows he will never sit.
– Trueblood

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Carve your name upon hearts, not upon marble.

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