Friday, March 30, 2012
Open hands....trusting heart
When you've been hurt by someone you love...
When you're going through a breakup...
When you want to hold on so tightly, even though you know you need to let go...
Remember that "God redeems loss and pain, and heals the heart to love again." When you RELEASE all you are holding onto, He can RESTORE and fill your empty hands and heart again.
Letting go you are holding on to hope...to His power...to His presence...
And things begin to change.
Jackie M. Johnson is an author and freelance writer in Colorado. Her hope-filled and encouraging books include "Power Prayers for Women," "When Love Ends and the Ice Cream Carton Is Empty" and "Powerful Prayers for Challenging Times." Jackie also writes the Living Single blog on Dr. James Dobson's Family Talk website.
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
No matter what you are going through today. Look up. Ask God to come into your situation. Invite him into your mess or heartache.
He is with you. Always. He cares. And God has the POWER to do something about it. He can make real and lasting changes in your life and the lives of those you care about.
So right now, we pray, "Lord, help every person who read this today. Give them HOPE. Lord, we ask that you would heal their situation. Make things right. Bring justice and peace. Help us to wait with confident expectation for your will in your time. We ask believing. In Jesus' name. Amen."
Walk into this day with hope.
Friday, March 9, 2012
The Power of Camp Can Change Lives
Today’s kids have a more isolated and indoor life than in previous generations. They miss the life lessons one can learn at camp—not just about nature and the outdoors—but about the Greatest Adventure of all: learning about a God-centered life.
Check out these stats—and the infographic above. The average child:
. Spends 3.5 minutes in meaningful conversation with their parents each week.¹
. Plays outside an average of four minutes a day.²
. Spends an average of 7.5 hours a day using entertainment media.³
Those are some reasons why Christian Camp and Conference Association (CCCA) recently kicked off “The Power of Camp,” a national marketing initiative to raise awareness of and esteem for Christian camp ministry through various media outlets and social media.
The Power of Camp is the power of hope and an opportunity for a life-changing experience.
Plus, part of this initiative is Corners of the Field, a program to raise funds to send impoverished kids to camp. Wouldn’t it be great if every kid had the ability to go to camp regardless of their ability to pay? For more info on how you can help, go to: www.ccca.org/go/corners.
What’s great about camp?
Approximately 6 million people attended a CCCA member camp each year. There are more than 850 member camps in some of the most beautiful settings in North America—places where caring adults invest in the lives of kids and their families. A safe place to explore, make friends and ask some of life’s most important questions while also enjoying the environment and moments of quietness. Camp provides high adventure like ropes courses, water sports, horseback riding and other activities that help build self-esteem and confidence.
What can you do?
We’re looking for people to help spread the word about The Power of Camp. Here are some social media things you can do:
1.“Like” www.facebook.com/thepowerofcamp and watch for news and updates about the campaign. Repost Facebook and Twitter info about the national campaign.
2. Visit the Web site: www.thepowerofcamp.com to learn more. If you’re a parent looking for a camp to send your children to, check out the Find a Camp link.
3. Send powerful stories (and photos) of how camp has changed your life—or your child’s—to Julie Hill at email@example.com.
4. Link to, download or share The Power of Camp infographic (the visual piece, also shown above, helps people quickly understand some of the issues facing young people and how The Power of Camp brings help) and send through your email, social networks and blogs.
Christian camp ministry can make an eternal difference in a child’s life. It did for the president of CCCA, Gregg Hunter. As a teen, someone provided a camp scholarship for him and it was there he made a life-changing decision to follow Christ.
Check out The Power of Camp at www.thepowerofcamp.com.
Spread the word through your social media channels. Send your child to a CCCA member camp—or donate so a child in need can go.
And you can make a difference in a kid’s life, too!
Sunday, March 4, 2012
“Where do we stand?”
Are we dating or just friends?"
It's confusing. It's maddening. It's the peculiar place between friendship and dating; I call it the Unknown Zone. You hang out with someone of the opposite sex. But it's so uncertain. Your relationship has not been defined.
Sure, it could turn into something real and lasting, or it may not. How can you know when he doesn’t communicate or his signals are mixed?
Michelle McKinney Hammond gets to the heart of the matter in The Unspoken Rules of Love: “If he does not ask you to have an exclusive relationship with him, assume that you are not in one.”
The guy needs to be initiating and pursuing you. If not, she continues, “Consider and enjoy your other options. Do not behave as if you are in a committed relationship when you are not. Doing so will only entangle your heart and set you up for disappointment and heartbreak. If he doesn’t tell you he wants to be in a committed relationship, consider yourself officially ‘just a friend.’”
Entangled. Yikes. That’s a hard place to be—not really in a real relationship, not really out of one and full of uncertainty.
A pastor I know once said, “The proof of desire is in the pursuit.” If a man wants to get to know you, you will know his intentions. You won’t have to guess. Don’t pretend it's okay because of excuses like: maybe he’s just busy, maybe he’s shy, maybe he’s had a family crisis, or maybe (fill in the blank).
The bottom line is for whatever reason (you don’t even have to know what it is) if he is not pursuing you, then you need to let it go. March forward with your life and trust God for the right man for you.
Sure, it may be hard to let go. But when you do, you free yourself up for the Real Thing. Don’t settle for “it's sorta something” when God want the very BEST for you.
And when the right one for you comes along, you’ll know—-because he will show you and tell you.
Today's post was a reprise of one of the most popular blog posts on A New Day Cafe.
Saturday, March 3, 2012
Imagine you're at a wedding, and you see the bride walking down the aisle. But she is not looking at the groom, her intended. No, she is looking at the best man--and flirting with him! You are shocked. Appalled.
Who would DO such a thing!
Then imagine the bride is you. The bridegroom is Jesus Christ and you are ignoring him. Instead you're focused on the "best man" of what you THINK are the best things in life...He tries to woo you away from the True Best Man who promises lasting love; the best man is not the intended.
How would He feel? The One who loves you most would do anything for you, and your heart is toward another.
This poem captures that intensity...and offers hope. Remember Who loves you.
Flirting with the Best Man
Staring at the bridegroom
Stands a radiant, stunning bride.
Draped in silk and taffeta
And yet her vision slides…
To the man standing beside him
With a grin a mile wide.
Looking handsome as he can be
Is the bridegroom’s own best man.
The bride looks down and clutches hard
The bouquet between her hands,
Wondering how this new distraction
Will affect her wedding plans.
The best man tries to woo her,
The bride becomes confused.
She thought the bridegroom was the one,
Yet now she has to choose.
Will she pass the tempter’s test?
What does she have to lose?
Though lured for just a moment
Her heart cries out, “No, wait!”
For the bride could see the look of love
Upon the bridegroom’s face.
How could another ever take
Her dear beloved’s place?
A test, indeed, for we, the Bride,
The Church, have often spurned
The One, True Bridegroom, Jesus Christ.
O, how our hearts have turned!
We try to seek and find true love,
But lessons must be learned:
No flirting with the best man.
Don’t let the feelings start.
For the best man is not always
The best man for the part.
The Bridegroom is the Chosen One,
And He must have your heart.
-- Jackie M. Johnson