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Archive for January, 2012

I Give You Me

Here is a true story about a nine year old boy who lived in a rural town in Tennessee. His house was in a poor area of the community. A church there had a bus ministry that came knocking on his door one Saturday afternoon.

The kid came to answer the door and greeted the bus pastor. The bus pastor asked if his parents were home and the small boy told him that his parents take off every weekend and leave him at home to take care of his little brother. The bus pastor couldn’t believe what the kid said and asked him to repeat it. The youngster gave the same answer
and the bus pastor asked to come in and talk with him.

They went into the living room and sat down on an old couch with the foam and springs exposed. The bus pastor asked the kid, “Where do you go to church?” The young boy surprised the visitor by replying, “I’ve never been to church in my whole life.”

The bus pastor thought to himself about the fact that his church was less than three miles from the child’s house. “Are you sure you have never been to church?” he asked again.

“I sure haven’t,” came his answer.

Then the bus pastor said, “Well, son, more important than going to church, have you ever heard the greatest love story ever told?” and then he proceeded to share the Gospel with this little nine year old boy. The young lad’s heart began to be tenderized and at the end of the bus pastor’s story the bus pastor asked if the boy wanted to receive this free gift from God.

The youngster exclaimed, “You betcha!”

The kid and the bus pastor got on their knees and the lad invited Jesus into his little heart and received the free gift of salvation. They both stood up and the bus pastor asked if he could pick the kid up for church the next morning.

“Sure,” the nine old replied.

The bus pastor got to the house early the next morning and found the lights off. He let himself in and snaked his way through the house and found the little boy asleep in his bed. He woke up the little boy and his brother and helped get them dressed. They got on the bus and ate a doughnut for breakfast on their way to church.

Keep in mind that this boy had never been to church before. The church was a real big one. The little kid just sat there, clueless of what was going on. A few minutes into the service these tall unhappy guys walked down to the front and picked up some wooden plates.

One of the men prayed and the kid with utter fascination watched them walk up and down the aisles. He still didn’t know what was going on. All of a sudden like a bolt of lightning it hit the kid what was taking place.

These people must be giving money to Jesus. He then reflected on the free gift of life he had received just twenty-four hours earlier. He immediately searched his pockets, front and back, and couldn’t find a thing to give Jesus.

By this time the offering plate was being passed down his aisle and with a broken heart he just grabbed the plate and held on to it. He finally let go and watched it pass on down the aisle. He turned around to see it passed down the aisle behind him. And then his eyes remained glued on the plate as it was passed back and forth, back and forth all the way to the rear of the sanctuary. Then he had an idea. This little nine year old boy, in front of God and everybody, got up out of his seat. He walked about eight rows back, grabbed the usher by the coat and asked to hold the plate one more time. Then he did the most astounding thing I have ever heard of. He took the plate, sat it
on the carpeted church floor and stepped into the center of it. As he stood there, he lifted his little head up and said, “Jesus, I don’t have anything to give you today, but just me. I give you me!”

Do you have a willing heart… willing enough to give Jesus EVERYTHING.. anywhere, anytime, any place… your whole self?

Take the first step today. It’s so simple. Close your eyes and tell Jesus, “Jesus, today I give you me. Help me to be on fire for you.”

As you take one step, He will come running to you, with arms wide open.

“Give to God what is God’s.” Give to God that which is made in His likeness. Give yourself to Jesus.

Bonded With A Whale

A year ago I went through one of the most difficult times in my life.

I had lost my family and my business all within a month. The heartache was numbing.

I decided to go to Mexico and see if I could renew my perspective and outlook on life. To say I arrived in Mexico with a heavy heart is an understatement. I booked a hotel on the Baja choosing one of the less populated areas for tourists.

It was in late February which also happens to be when the grey whales swim down to have their babies.

I decided that I may as well do something other than sit in the sun and feel sorry for myself so I booked a day trip to see the whales.

I was not prepared for what happened.

On arrival at the marina, we were chaperoned into little motor boats. I have seen pictures of people out whale watching and at least they had boats larger than the whales. Not here. Each boat seated 6 people and off we went in search of whales.

We soon saw a couple of water spouts which our guide said were whales. The captain of our boat took off in that direction. Soon there were a number of grey whales swimming close enough to get a look and some pictures.

Our guide alerted us to a huge spot moving closer to the boat. We were a little apprehensive because these whales were at least twice as long as our boat.

To my utter amazement, all of a sudden one surfaced right in front of my face. It had swum under the boat and came up on my side. I thought I was imagining that it took a very good look at me.

Well, let me tell you that was some sight. Everyone was trying to take pictures of her under the water before she swam away. Within a few minutes she was back. Once again surfacing right beside me. Once again, she looked me right in the eye.

The next time I was ready for her. She surfaced in front of my eyes and I reached out to touch her. She stayed on top of the water long enough for me to rub her beautiful barnacle covered, scarred head and snout. She did that twice. Incredible.

Everyone was busy taking pictures while I got soaked. I didn’t care. It was a miraculous feeling. She swam away and the captain steered the boat toward other whales we could see in the distance.

Then the guide yelled again that two were coming close to the boat.

There was my new found friend with her baby. It was unbelievable to see how she nudged her baby toward our boat. She was bringing her baby to meet me!

Before long, I was within 5 feet of the most beautiful baby whale you can imagine. The mother swam just on the other side of her and after I had long enough to absorb what I was seeing, she guided her baby away from the boat and out into the waters.

That was the last we saw of her.

On the bus trip back everyone was cheerfully talking about the experience and my “bonding.” The guide told us that in 18 years of conducting tours to see whales, only once before had they witnessed a whale allowing someone to touch them.

Why did this happen?

I have no explanation why she chose me for the privilege. Maybe the mother whale sensed my sadness. It was a humbling experience.

She helped me to see the light even though I was in a very dark place. To describe it as a religious experience is the best I can do. It brings tears to my eyes when I remember the day I came back from the pit of desperation and bonded with that whale.

I appreciated the obstacles that mother whale had to overcome on her long journey to the place she would have her baby. That magical encounter paved the way for me to put life back into perspective and I came home a much wiser person.

That huge beautiful creature made me understand, that despite the obstacles life puts in your way, there is always an opportunity for a new beginning.

You must never give up.

by: Lynn Perrier

The Picture of Peace

There once was a King who offered a prize to the artist who would paint the best picture of peace. Many artists tried. The King looked at all the pictures, but there were only two he really liked and he had to choose between them.

One picture was of a calm lake. The lake was a perfect mirror for peace, towering mountains were all around. Overhead was a blue sky with fluffy white clouds. All who saw this picture thought that it was a perfect picture of peace.

The other picture had mountains too, but these were rugged and bare. Above was an angry sky from which rain fell, in which lightening played. Down the side of a mountain tumbled a foaming water fall, and this did not look peaceful at all.

But when the King looked, he saw behind the waterfall a tiny bush growing in a crack in the rock. In the bush a mother bird had built her nest. There, in the midst of the rush of angry water, sat the mother bird on her nest….perfect peace.

Which picture do you think won the prize?

The King chose the second picture. Peace does NOT mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble, or hard work. Peace means to be in the midst of ALL those things and still be calm in your heart. That is the real meaning of peace.