Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus
Devotions taken from the messages of Adrian Rogers.BIBLE MEDITATION: “And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.” Mark 11:22
I ask some Christians, “How are you doing?” They say, “Okay—under the circumstances.” How did you ever get there?
Circumstances are like a mattress. You’re supposed to be on it, not under it. Under the circumstances, you suffocate; on them you rest pretty well.
The only way you can run the race is to take your eyes off things or people around you and look to Jesus. He’s the author of the race. He’s the goal to which you run. If you look to Jesus to supply your every need for the race, you’ll find faith growing in your heart and in your life. You see, it’s not great faith in God; it is faith in a great God.
Do you have a hymnal in your home? Find the hymn “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus” by Helen Lemmel and make it your anthem today!
Turn your eyes upon Jesus
No light in the darkness you see?
There’s a light for a look at the Savior,
And life more abundant and free!
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.
He passed, and we follow Him there;
Over us sin no more hath dominion—
For more than conquerors we are!
Believe Him, and all will be well:
Then go to a world that is dying,
His perfect salvation to tell!
A wise old gentleman retired and purchased a modest home near a junior high school.
He spent the first few weeks of his retirement in peace and contentment. Then a new school year began. The very next afternoon three young boys, full of youthful, after-school enthusiasm, came down his street, beating merrily on every trashcan they encountered. The crashing percussion continued day after day, until finally the wise old man decided it was time to take some action.
The next afternoon, he walked out to meet the young percussionists as they banged their way down the street. Stopping them, he said, "You kids are a lot of fun. I like to see you express your exuberance like that. In fact, I used to do the same thing when I was your age. Will you do me a favor? I'll give you each a dollar if you'll promise to come around every day and do your thing." The kids were elated and continued to do a bang-up job on the trashcans.
After a few days, the old-timer greeted the kids again, but this time he had a sad smile on his face.
"This recession's really putting a big dent in my income," he told them. "From now on, I'll only be able to pay you 50 cents to beat on the cans."
The noisemakers were obviously displeased, but they did accept his offer and continued their afternoon ruckus. A few days later, the wily retiree approached them again as they drummed their way down the street.
"Look," he said, "I haven't received my Social Security check yet, so I'm not going to be able to give you more than 25 cents. Will that be okay?"
"A lousy quarter?" the drum leader exclaimed. "If you think we're going to waste our time, beating these cans around for a quarter, you're nuts! No way, mister. We quit!"
And the old man enjoyed peace.
In The News:
Ceasefire Deal Between Israel and Hamas Announced
After a deadly eight-day conflict, Israel and Gaza militants agreed to a ceasefire effective Wednesday at 9 p.m. (2 p.m. ET), Egypt's foreign minister announced at a press conference, Fox News reports. Mohammed Kamel Amr made the announcement in Cairo, flanked by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. "Egypt is assuming the responsibility and leadership that has long made this country a cornerstone of international peace," Clinton said. The ceasefire agreement was later confirmed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Reuters reported that Netanyahu warned in a statement that more forceful action may be necessary if the ceasefire deal is unsuccessful. President Barack Obama called Netanyahu and commended the decision; Obama also spoke with Egyptian president Mohammed Morsi and thanked him for his efforts in the deal. According to a copy of the agreement obtained by the Associated Press, Israel will end its policy of assassinating top Hamas officials, and Hamas is promising to stop all rocket fire from the many militant groups operating in the Gaza Strip. After a 24-hour cooling-off period, Israel pledges to ease its blockade of Gaza, though there are no firm assurances on how that will be done. Israel has maintained that blockade since Hamas seized power in Gaza in 2007, and has gradually lifted many of the restrictions.
Iran Speaker Confirms Military Aid to Hamas
Iran has supplied military aid to the Islamist group Hamas in Gaza, Iran's parliament speaker said Wednesday, reports AFP. "We are proud to defend the people of Palestine and Hamas ... and that our assistance to them has been both financial and military," Ali Larijani said without elaborating. Iran has never made a secret of its support for Israel's foes Hamas and Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip, but generally avoids mention of sending military aid. Israel has accused Iran of supplying Hamas with its Fajr 5 missile, used to target Tel Aviv since Israel launched its offensive on Gaza on Nov. 14. The Fajr 5 rocket can hit targets up to 75 kilometers (46 miles) away, a far greater range than the home-produced Qassam rockets used in the past by Palestinian militants in Gaza to target Israel. Iran's Revolutionary Guards chief Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafari claimed Wednesday that Tehran was only responsible for having shared the missile's "technology." According to Jafari, "Iran provides technical assistance to all Muslims who fight against world arrogance," a term used by Iranian officials to describe the West and Israel. Iran also stepped up calls for Gazans to be "armed to defend" themselves and urged the Muslim world to retaliate against Israel.
Church of England Rejects Women Bishops
In a surprise move that shocked both sides of a years-long debate, the Church of England on Tuesday (Nov. 20) rejected an expected move to allow women bishops, the Religion News Service reports. Many of the 470 members of the church's three-tiered General Synod (bishops, clergy and laity) were stunned that the House of Laity couldn't garner a two-thirds majority in favor of women bishops. The vote failed by just five votes, 132 to 74, after easily passing the bishops and clergy. "The consequence of the 'no' vote of terminating any further consideration of the draft legislation means that it will not be possible to introduce draft legislation in the same terms until a new General Synod comes into being in 2015," a church statement said.