I've been blogging about my nephew Rob, his wife Patricia, and the Budapest MinistryNet conference. They left today -- but won't get to Budapest until Friday. Keep them in your prayers.
Tuesday Rob blogged about requesting prayers for visas for the participants to the conference. At that point they needed 11 -- but read the post for today:
UPDATE #4 (31 Mar): 1 more visa granted. 1 potential attendee stopped pursuing it since doing so would require travel from the Philippines to Indonesia (then Hungary) with no guarantees of getting past Indonesia.
** 2 remaining ** - These two individuals are now in transit from Mali and Ghana, hoping to receive visas in Paris and London respectively. Pray for these remaining two!!
My nephew Rob and his wife Patricia leave for the MinistryNet conference in Budapest tomorrow. They are certainly in our prayers -- not only for safe travel but for a successful conference.
Rob shared some specific prayer requests on the MinistryNet blog site for visas for conference attendees. Here's his post from yesterday:
We told you about a prayer request for some potential conference attendees were having trouble getting their visas to come to Budapest.
Here is the latest update:
* We originally had 11 needing visas
* 3 received theirs
* We still have 8 needing a visa to attend
Will you please pray for these 8 people? Please pray they will be able to get their visa and travel arrangements in time.
UPDATE: 1 visa came through! Please pray for the remaining 7.
Happy Birthday to you!
Happy Birthday to you!
Happy Birthday Olivia
Happy Birthday to you!
Rejoice, rejoice O Christian,
Lift up your voice and sing
Eternal hallelujahs to Jesus Christ the King!
The Hope of all who seek Him, the Help of all who find,
None other is so loving, so good and kind.
He lives! He lives! Christ Jesus lives today!
He walsk with me and talks with me along life's narrow way.
He lives! He llives! Salvation to impart
You ask me how I know He lives -- He lives within my heart!
"I Serve A Risen Savior" by Alfred H. Ackley
Paul Willis, pastor of The Cathedral Of His Glory in Greensboro, tells a story of sailing with his grandfather off the coast of North Carolina when he was a young boy. One day as they were sailing the wind stopped -- the sea became a dead calm -- and their sailboat began floating aimlessly in the water. Try as they might, they couldn’t get the ship to head in the direction of home -- and it was getting dark. Young Paul panicked -- and did not know what to do. He knew they couldn’t swim to shore -- they were much too far out.
What were they going to do?
His grandfather knew that all they could do was wait -- and -- being an experienced sailor and fisherman -- he knew the wind would begin blowing again.
Darkness fell -- and still no wind.
Young Paul knew they were doomed.
Grandfather knew that the wind would come back in time.
Finally -- late into the night -- grandfather woke Paul and told him to trim the sails. Paul did not understand why -- the wind was still not blowing -- but off in the distance he heard a faint sound. The sound became stronger and stronger until finally he could feel the wind. With the sails trimmed, the boat made its way home.
Willis likens the unexpected -- to him -- wind to the new life God offers us.
Just when we think things are at their worst --
there is the wind -- the Spirit -- of God -- giving us new life --
new hope -- for our lives.
Today we are invited to embrace the mystery of the cross by recalling the events of Christ’s physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual agony. Grace beckons us to an assent of absolute faith that Christ suffered and died. As Paul reminds us, “If Christ had not died and risen, our faith is worthless!” Our own continual dying to sin, a process that unfolds over the course of our lives, enables us by His grace to ever more fully realize the potential of Christian charity in our daily living.
Most of us have been asked the very simple question, “what’s on your mind?” As I was reading today’s lectionary scriptures, I imagined God asking the same question of Jesus, as they talked about the salvation plan for all humankind ...
Jesus, bearing the power and equality with God, chose self-sacrificing, humility and love as the way of bringing salvation to people in the world.
In today’s world of convenience, comfortableness, busyness and tensions, are we willing to walk in steps of humility and selflessness?
May our life reflect the mind of Christ, by serving God and other people humbly with love, and obeying the word of God.
When his eyes grew weak with sorrow, his soul and body with grief; when anguish consumed him and affliction took his strength, Jesus called out from this psalm (v 5). Broken like pottery by his enemies (v 12), forgotten in his dying, Jesus delivered his life into the hands of God, His Father.
Throughout the day we should face the trials head on because we know that God is giving us the strength.Take the opportunity today to smile and talk to that person who is challenging you so that you might show them God’s love!
my cheeks to those who pulled out my beard (Isaiah 50:6(b))
I take for my sureties:
The power of God to guide me,
The might of God to uphold me,
The wisdom of God to teach me,
The eye of God to watch over me,
The ear of God to hear me,
The word of God to give me speech,
The hand of God to protect me,
The way of God to go before me,
The shield of God to shelter me....
Christ be with me, Christ before me,
Christ behind me, Christ within me,
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ at my right, Christ at my left,
Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me,
Christ in the mouth of every man who speaks to me,
Christ in every eye that sees me,
Christ in every ear that hears me.
We had names for a man like this: anarchist, liar, thief. He went around talking about bringing down the government, saying he was the “king,” like it was a funny joke. And that donkey he was riding on? He had his followers steal it for him in broad daylight. The happy bring-down-the-system party had to stop. The people shouting “Hosanna!” and parading about in the streets had to get back to work. The only way to stop the hullabaloo was to give him a death sentence.
UNC will beat Duke -- Wake Forest will beat Illinois.
The winner of the championship game?
Week by week, month by month, from one Advent to the next, and now 12 years have passed us by. I don’t know where we are going with this. A part of me wishes every Sunday were my last, and another part of me lives in fear that one day someone will grab my elbow and say, “That’s enough, Cowboy. Turn in your spurs and hand over your saddle. Let’s give someone else a turn at this.”
And indeed, the day will come when this weary cowboy will pack it in and return to the pew from which he came. But today is not that day.
* If you eat chocolate, only eat dark chocolate.
* Only eat chocolate if you're healthy.
* Consume it in moderation.
There will always be many who love Christ's heavenly kingdom, but few who will bear his cross. Jesus has many who desire consolation, but few who care for adversity. He finds many to share his table, but few who will join him in fasting. Many are eager to be happy with him; few wish to suffer anything for him. Many will follow him as far as the breaking of bread, but few will remain to drink from his passion. Many are awed by his miracles, few accept the shame of his cross.
servanthood is the other side of love. In Jesus we witness the creative suffering of God.