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Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Change in Direction

by Jimmy Tai-On Lin

Scripture Reading — Acts 16:1-10

What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open. — Revelation 3:7

I have changed careers three times. While teaching school in Hong Kong, I felt called to be more equipped to serve the Lord, so I left my position to attend seminary in the United States. Little did I know that the Lord would prepare a pastoral vacancy back home for me by the time I graduated. Even further from my mind was that I would return to the States later to serve God in media ministry.
Summer is a good time for relocation and job changes. The weather is nice, and children are out of school for a few months. But how do we know if the change we are making is the right move? Or at the right time? Or in line with the will of God? In our reading from Acts today, Paul and his companions used their God-given wisdom and knowledge to plan a route for spreading the good news of salvation in Christ. Their work was all for God’s glory, but twice the Spirit prevented them. Then a door opened for them to go to Macedonia.....

read more here.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

1 Corinthians 7:7

Do you enjoy rich coffee in the morning? I do, in fact I often bribe myself with the hot beverage to get myself out of bed on a cold winter day. I’m sipping a fresh cup now as I write this, feeling the warmth flow through me. But what about those hot summer dawns, when the last thing you want is to pour something hot? Isn’t iced coffee a great substitute? Just add a cup of ice to coffee brewed a bit stronger, and you’re all set.
Your outer life can be like this if things feel too hot, or intense. Ice them down. Slow down. If a relationship becomes too hot, put it on ice for while. If you are spending too much time on a hobby or idle activity, put it on ice for a while. Use the summer days to read your Bible or some meaningful devotionals. Use the days to seek out your spiritual gifts. Or have a cup of iced coffee and talk to your kids.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

First Day of Summer

June 21
Psalm 22:10

June 21 is the first day of summer and the longest (sunlight) day of the year. Since it is also my birthday, my mother likes to joke that yes, indeed, the day she was in labor with me was the longest day of that year! Like the start of a new season, being re-born is the spiritual birth we can choose to accept. There can be labor pains in being born again as well, taking a hard look inside ones’ self and changing some things can be exhausting.
        So that much like your birth to your earthly parents, you can celebrate birth
        with your Heavenly father. As summer starts this year, recommit to your rebirth.

         Then you will have two birthdays to enjoy each year.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Father’s Day
Exodus 20:12

I have a wonderful father. He has been married to my mother for fifty years and they still get along very well. They are best friends. Growing up, I could always count on Dad to help me with school projects or games at home. He was always there to take me sledding in winter and boating in the summer, and we had a lot of quality time on the weekends, despite the long hours he had to work to support our family. My dad exhibits so many characteristics that we depend on our Heavenly father to have: loyalty, caring, reliability, loving, strength. He will probably blush when he reads this (so let’s add humility to the list!) Please join me in wishing fathers everywhere a wonderful day today.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

June 11
Song of Songs 7:12

June is the traditional month for weddings, for men and women to celebrate joining together in love. And why not June? The beginning of summer produces warmer temperatures and fresh flowers. Picture yourself in a small country chapel, an organ playing softly, the scent of candles and roses in the air. People you love populate the wooden pews, dressed in their finest. Warm sunlight pours through the stained glass windows and you sigh, gripping your weathered copy of the Bible.  You absolutely feel His presence.

He loves to be within the site of love, of His children promising themselves to each other in holy matrimony. These bonds are just a hint at our relationship with Him, a preview. It’s comforting to know His love for us is this and so much more.