Saturday, March 31, 2012

Happy Saturday

There Are Two Plans for Your Life

By Dr. Larry Ollison

There are two plans for your life. God has a plan, which is abundant life, and Satan has a plan, which includes defeat. These two plans are diametrically opposed to each other. 

Notice the contrast in John 10:10 where Jesus said, "The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly."
We must recognize this: God's plan is prosperity, health, abundance, peace, love, and life. Satan's plan is poverty, sickness, lack, stress, hatred, and death. And as strange as it may seem, the choice is ours. Both plans are set before us and we must choose. Do we want life or do we want death. It seems like a "no brainer" of a choice, but many are choosing death. How can this be? 

Well, it's this way. Even though they are choosing death, they think they are choosing life. They are deceived.
Satan is a liar. Jesus said in John 8:44 when He was talking to the Pharisees, "You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him." Then Jesus goes on to say, "But because I tell the truth, you do not believe Me." 

Satan is the master of deception. He can take darkness and make it look like light. Second Corinthians 11:14-15 says, "For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works." 

Do not allow yourself to be deceived. Satan wants to destroy you. If you are not a Christian, he wants to keep you from accepting Jesus and becoming one. If you are a Christian, He wants to derail you, to distract you, to destroy your life and your witness any way he can. He is relentless and he does not give up. 

But today I have good news. We do not have to accept Satan's plan for our lives. We have a choice, but more than that, we have been given authority over the devil. Jesus has paid the price and defeated Satan. He took back the authority that man gave up in the Garden of Eden. Jesus then gave that authority to everyone who would accept Him as Lord and Savior. Every Christian has been given authority over the forces of evil and can live a life of victory. 

But there is one catch. You must not only know you have the authority, but you must take authority. 

In Luke 10:19, Jesus said, "Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you." 

A person can be given authority but unless that authority is exercised, it is useless. Again, Satan is a liar and he does his best to convince Christians that they do not have authority over him. He uses fear and intimidation to cause Christians to step back and do nothing. But this should not be. Jesus defeated Satan and made a public display of him. As a Christian you are a part of the body of Christ. You have nothing to fear. Victory is yours if you believe the truth and discard the lie. 

Remember, "Greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world." 

Daily Smile: 
My boss phoned me today.

He said, "Is everything okay at the office?"


I said, "Yes, it's all under control. It's been a very busy day, I haven't stopped for a minute."


"Can you do me a favor?" he asked.


I said, "Of course, anything, what is it?"


He said, "Hurry up and take your shot, I'm right behind you on the 7th hole."


 

 Would you like to read more of The StarLight News???
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Richard

 

Friday, March 30, 2012

Happy Friday

Today's Discussion - Comfort
Ask ye of the Lord…for the idols have spoken vanity, and the diviners have seen a lie, and have told false dreams; they comfort in vain – Zechariah 10:1-2

There are a thousand different places and people and pleasures that promise comfort and healing and satisfaction…but their comfort is vain, their promises are empty. Cosmetics are not the fountain of youth they claim to be, cars do not satisfy the cavernous need for pleasure that people have, and college will not fill the need for knowledge that every one of us feels. They comfort in vain.

Many religious leaders or philosophical seers or academic icons pretend to understand the needs of mankind and claim to have found the answers to life's big questions. But they have seen a lie. They are just as blind in their own musings and speculations as those whom they persuade to follow them.

The only true promise, the only full comfort that is to be found in all the universe is found at the feet of Jesus. He is the Way, He is the Truth, in Him is the Life. Everything else and everyone else that makes a pretense of substituting the creator God is telling you a lie, is offering empty promises, is plying a false comfort.

Are you looking today for a soul-filling, need-meeting, pleasure-supplying comfort? The greatest pleasure the world will ever know is the satisfaction of submitting to God, confessing our desperate condition apart from Him, and begging Him to fill us with Himself.
Ask ye of the Lord.You will not be disappointed. His comfort is not in vain.

Daily Smile:
A young woman brought her fiance to visit her parents. After a nice dinner, the father invited the fiance to the library for a talk.

"So what are your plans?" he asked the young man.

"I am a seminary students," he replied.

"A seminary student. Hmmm," said the father. "Admirable, but how will you provide a home for my daughter?"

"I will study," the young man said, "and God will provide for us."

"And how will you buy her an engagement ring, such as she deserves?"

"I will focus on my studies and God will provide for us."

"And how will you support your children?"

"Don't worry, sir. God will provide."

The conversation continued like this; each time the father questioned, the young man insisted that God would provide.

Later, when the mother asked about the male conversation, the father sighed, "Well, he has no job and no plan, but the good news is: he thinks I'm God!"
 

 Would you like to read more of The StarLight News???
Then go to
 and Happy Reading...
Richard

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Happy Thursday

Living Water and Crack-free Cisterns!

"My people have committed two sins: They have forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water." Jeremiah 2:13, NIV

There were many different things that God’s people did when they turned their back on the living God – the list of sins that would be needed to describe all their ungodly activities would have been very long! But when, through the prophet Jeremiah, God began to speak words of rebuke, he reduced all their sinful behaviour into just two categories.

Firstly, they had deserted the only source of living water and secondly, they had tried to generate their own ‘water supply’ as a substitute for the living water that flows from the heart of God.

In Israel, underground cisterns were vital for the storage of water for use during the dry season. Without a good cistern people would die through lack of water. A cracked cistern was useless, water would flow into it alright. But the water would all leak away through the cracks so that when the water was most needed, there would be no water there.

God uses this picture to speak to His people about what they had been doing. He uses the need for physical water as a parable of the need for the living spiritual water, which sustains God’s people through all the ups and downs of life. The first sin of God’s people was to decide that they wanted an alternative source of supply, so instead of constantly coming back to the only source of living water, they did what mankind has tried to do throughout history – they built their own cistern, which embraced everything from idolatry to sexual immorality. They finished up believing that good was bad and bad was good and going in the opposite direction to the ways of God.

God had provided for them everything that was needful for living in covenant relationship with the God who had created the world and everything in it. But pride in the heart of man will always want to build an alternative way, and say it’s better than what God provided in the first place. Ultimately this is the foundation for every alternative belief system, false religion or moral order that has ever risen up in the heart of man and practised on the face of the earth.

It’s easy to look at the people of Jeremiah’s day and ask, “How could they?” But all we need to do is look at our own generation and see that 21st century man is no different. Part of the reason why I believe God put the vision for Ellel 365 into my heart was to ensure that within Ellel Ministries there’s a constant flow of living water from God’s Word and that people are able to know how to build a cistern in their own lives that is sound and without cracks.

Prayer: Help me, Lord, to only ever want the living water which flows from your heart to the heart of man. And give me the determination to rebuild sound and crack-free cisterns in my own life, so that the Water of Life will always be available to me throughout my days – even in seasons of drought. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Today's Writer : Peter Horrobin

Daily Smile:
A lady who was speeding had an officer pulled her to the side of the road.

She didn't have her seat belt on so as soon as she stopped, she quickly slipped it on before the officer got to her window.

After talking to her about speeding, the officer said, "I see you are wearing your seat belt. Do you believe in wearing it at all times?"

"Yes, I do, officer," she replied.

"Well," asked the officer, "do you always do it up with it looped through your steering wheel?"

 Would you like to read more of The StarLight News???
Then go to
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Richard

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Happy Wednesday

Living a Life of Conviction
 
"For we know, brothers loved by God, that He has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not simply with words, but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and with deep conviction." - 1 Thessalonians 1:4-5a 

Everyone lives a life of conviction. Whatever we give our greatest time, our greatest energies, and our greatest resources to is a good indication of where our convictions lie. Some live a life of conviction about sports. Some live a life of conviction around pleasure. Still others live a life of conviction about very little that matters at all. 

Whenever God chooses to do a deep work in a life, a strong conviction is born of the Holy Spirit. Conversions in the early Church resulted in changed lives that held to a deep, life-transforming conviction regarding what they believed and how they lived out that belief. Paul explains that the gospel they received came not just in words, but also in power, with the Holy Spirit and with deep conviction. 

In order to impact the workplace for Jesus Christ, each of us must be reflecting a faith that is demonstrated through deeply held convictions. Are you living a life of deep conviction that spurs you on to reflect the power of Christ in your life and the lives of others? Paul was willing to suffer great persecution for his faith in a living God. God calls each of us to a life that is supernatural, not simply a good, moral life. The early Church understood the role the Holy Spirit played in demonstrating this power of the gospel. It was this deep work that resulted in living the gospel with great conviction. If you are not living the gospel with great conviction, ask the Holy Spirit to so fill your life today that the power of His Spirit is truly reflected in your life so that you may impact others in your community.  

Daily Smile:

A juggler, driving to his next performance, is stopped by the police. "What are those machetes doing in your car?" asks the cop.
"I juggle them in my act."


"Oh, yeah? Says the doubtful cop. "Let's see you do it.” The juggler gets out and starts tossing and catching the knives. Another man driving by slows down to watch.


"Wow" says the passer-by. "I'm glad I quit drinking. Look at the test they're giving now!
 

 Would you like to read more of The StarLight News???
Then go to
 and Happy Reading...
Richard

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Happy Tuesday

Sorry I missed Monday... I was delivering April's paper from early morning until late afternoon... This morning I will finish the delivery and hopefully get a little rest before going to get the grandchildren from school... 
Happy Reading... 
Richard

 The Challenges of God’s Call

"The Lord is with you, mighty warrior."
Judges 6:12, NIV

At a time when Israel was living in disobedience to the Lord, and behaved in the evil ways of the nations surrounding them, they were oppressed by marauding bands of Midianites.

Midian so impoverished the Israelites that they cried out to the Lord for help. In response to their cry, He sent a prophet who reminded them that the reason for this oppression was because they have been disobedient and not listened to the Lord.
Then the angel of the Lord came to Gideon as he was threshing wheat in a winepress, hiding from the Midianites. The angel said, ‘The Lord is with you, mighty warrior’ (Judges 6:12).

At this, Gideon asks, ‘If the Lord is with us, why has all this happened to us? Where are all His wonders that our fathers told us about? Now the Lord has abandoned us and put us in the hands of Midian.’

Then the Lord says, ‘Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian’s hand. Am I not sending you?’

I wonder if there are times when we become a bit like Gideon, when we find the going tough, making feeble attempts to survive and our faith falters to the point of doubt. In such circumstances what is God trying to say to us?

Could it be that God wants us to look back to those experiences of the past, where He brought us out of a severe bondage and oppression, and how He helped and delivered us? This could be the point where He says, ‘Go in the strength you have - My strength. I will be with you, and you will overcome this problem.’

When we know we have drifted from the Lord, and we’re aware of our own weakness and inability, and yet we recognise the power of The Lord’s presence, we’re on the road to victory, whatever the enemy might throw against us. God being with one individual results in a powerful majority.


Like Gideon, there may be things we need to put right before we go into battle. We may need to put aside some things we consider essential for success. But when the Lord has promised ‘I will be with you, and you will be successful’, we can rest assured that this will be the outcome. Again, it is all a matter of dealing with any sin, and responding to God’s call with an obedient heart.

Prayer: O Lord God, please forgive me for those times when I’m disobedient to You and help me to recognise that You’re still with me and ready to help. Forgive me for those times I doubt and question where You are in a situation. Please enable me to recognise that however helpless and hopeless I might feel, You’re always with me to help me be an overcomer, in Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Today's Writer : David Silvester


Daily Smile:
A cocky State Highways employee stopped at a farm and talked with an old farmer. He told the farmer, "I need to inspect your farm for a possible new road."

The old farmer said, "OK, but don't go in that field." The Highways employee said, "I have the authority of the State Government to go where I want. See this card? I am allowed to go wherever I wish on farm land."


So the old farmer went about his farm chores.


Later, he heard loud screams and saw the State Highways employee running for the fence and close behind was the farmer's prize bull. The bull was madder than a nest full of hornets and the bull was gaining on the employee at every step!!


The old farmer called out, "Show him your card!!"

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Happy Sunday

Sudden Storms

"He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken." Psalm 62:2, NIV

Here in Scotland we’re famous for many things. One is the amazingly dramatic weather changes we can experience in a short space of time. There have been many times when I’ve set off from home in t-shirt and sunglasses for a quick shopping trip, only to have the heavens open and rain thunder down on me, soaking me right through. But if I take my water-proof jacket with me, when the weather turns, I’m ready and prepared. Walking in the rain still isn’t necessarily pleasant, but it isn’t so terrible either.

And that’s how life is. Life can throw things at us so suddenly that it shakes us up. It may be a traumatic event, a harsh word, a shocking discovery, an accident or any number of things that you just can’t see coming. It shakes your security. It changes the direction of your life in a day, (or even a single moment).

Just as I need to have my protective coat with me at all times (even when I think I don’t need to), we need to be in the protection of God at all times. We need to know that whatever turmoil may come our way, He is there to give us protection, security and peace. As the rain washes over my protective jacket, so can the turmoil that rages around us, when we’re steady on our Rock.

This doesn’t make us immune to bad things happening to us; just as wearing a coat doesn’t make the rain stop falling. It may not be an enjoyable experience, but we can work through the turmoil knowing that God will keep us safe to the end.

So let’s set our foot on the Rock of our Salvation and enjoy the security and protection of knowing, whatever happens, He will always protect us - as long as we allow Him to.

Prayer: Father God, You’re the rock of my salvation and my protection in times of trial and trouble. I ask You to help me live my life under Your protection, (even when I think I am safe). In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Today's Writer : Lindsey Hanekom 


Daily Smile:
At New York's Kennedy airport today an individual was arrested, and later determined to be a public school teacher, trying to board a flight while in possession of a ruler, a protractor, a slide rule, and a calculator.

Home Land Security believes the man is a member of the notorious Al-gebra movement. The man was being charged with carrying weapons of math instruction. "Al-gebra is a very fearsome movement, indeed", the Home Land Security reported. "They desire average solutions by means and extremes, and sometimes go off on a tangents in a search of absolute value.

"They consist of shadowy figures, with names like "x" and "y", and, although they are frequently referred to as "unknowns", we know they really belong to a common denominator and are part of the axis of medieval with coordinates in every country. "As the great Greek philanderer Isosceles used to say, there are three sides to every triangle."

The Office of Homeland Security commented, "If God had wanted us to have better weapons of math instruction, he would have given us more fingers and toes."

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Happy Saturday

The Ultimate Sacrifice

For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16, HCSB

On a trip to South Asia I visited an area where the gospel was spreading rapidly. People would come to the missionary and say, “We heard you are telling about a religion that provides the forgiveness of sins.” When the missionary told them of God’s love and His Son’s sacrifice for their sins, they readily responded.

I asked, “Before you heard of Jesus Christ dying for you, what would you do about your sins?” They explained they knew their wrong actions had something to do with what happened to them when they died. They recalled how they would make sacrifices to the spirits, but went on to say, “We never had assurance our sins were forgiven until we heard of a God who loved us and sacrificed His Son for our sins.”

People all over the world make sacrifices to gods they don’t know. They diligently carry out religious devotion in hopes of getting to heaven. But the sacrifice of the sinless Son of God is the only means by which we can be saved.

The wonderful thing is His payment for sin is for everyone everywhere who Father, thank You that “whosoever” includes me.


Daily Smile:
Over breakfast one morning, a woman said to her husband, "I bet you don't know what day this is."

"Of course I do," he indignantly answered, going out the door on his way the office.


At 10 AM, the doorbell rang, and when the woman opens the door, she was handed a box containing a dozen long-stemmed red roses. At 1 PM, a foil-wrapped, two pound box of her favorite chocolates arrive. Later, a boutique delivered a designer dress. The woman shouldn’t wait for her husband to come home. "First the flowers, then the candy, and then the dress!" she exclaimed. "I've never spent a more wonderful Groundhog Day in my whole life!'


Editor's Note:
     Which, by the way, is one of my favorite movies to watch... Imagine getting to live a day over and over again until you got it right... 
     Unfortunately, life does not follow movies, either you are saved or not... Please be sure...

Friday, March 23, 2012

HAPPY FRIDAY - YEA!!!!!

Alone, No One Cares

As apostles of Christ we could have been a burden to you, but we were gentle among you, like a mother caring for her little children. We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well, because you had become so dear to us. --1 Thessalonians 2:6-8

From 1986 to 1990, Frank Reed was held hostage in a Lebanon cell. For months at a time, he was blindfolded, living in complete darkness, and chained to a wall, kept in absolute silence.

Reed was beaten, made ill, and tormented, but he felt the most hopeless because it seemed that no one cared. He said in an interview with Time magazine, "Nothing I did mattered to anyone. I began to realize how withering it is to exist with not a single expression of caring around [me]....I learned one overriding fact: caring is a powerful force. If no one cares, you are truly alone."

Christians are never truly alone because we are fortunate to have God's gracious watch care over our lives, as well as that of the Church. This type of caring can provide the strength needed for a believer to endure anything.

Do you know someone who feels as though no one cares for them? Can you think of a few people right now who are living in loneliness? We have been called as believers to minister to those who are lonely. And in turn, we never have to be lonely because there are other believers who will care for us.

Remember the promise of Jesus: "I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me" (Matthew 25:40).

PRAYER CHALLENGE: Ask the Lord to open the doors of opportunity for you to pour out love, care, and concern for someone who needs it, just as Jesus did.


Daily Smile:


His father sends a small boy to bed. Five minutes later....

"Da-ad...." 


"What?" "I'm thirsty. Can you bring drink of water?" "No. You had your chance. Lights out."


Five minutes later: "Da-aaaad....."


"WHAT?"


"I'm THIRSTY. Can I have a drink of water??"


"I told you NO!" If you ask again, I'll have to spank you!!"


Five minutes later......"Daaaa-aaaad....."


"WHAT!"


"When you come in to spank me, can you bring a drink of water?"


Editor's Note:
     Today is a happier day than usual for me... Leaving in a little while to get the April '12 StarLight News and start delivering them... For those outside the regular delivery area, you can still read it online at http://the-starlight-news.blogspot.com/... 
Happy Reading...

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Happy Thursday

The Training Ground of God

"Praise be to the Lord my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle." - Psalm 144:1 

David was a man skilled in war. From his days as a shepherd boy to the days of serving in Saul's army to leading his own army, David learned to be a skillful warrior. How does one become a skillful warrior? 

The only way one can become a skillful warrior is to be trained and placed in the middle of the battle. It is only when we are placed in the furnace of battle that we truly learn to fight the real battles. Practice doesn't make you battle ready. War games won't prepare you for facing your real enemy in the battlefield. The stark reality of being in the midst of the battle makes us effective warriors. 

Simply reading your Bible will not make you a warrior for the Kingdom. Knowledge without experience is mere folly. Only when you are placed in situations where there is nothing or no one who can save you but God will you learn the lessons of warrior faith. This is the training ground of God, which will make you into a soldier for Christ in the workplace. Consider it to be suicidal faith - faith that says I want to be dead to anything that keeps me from fulfilling God's purposes for my life. It is when your efforts can do nothing to change your circumstance and you are at the mercy of God. These are the real training grounds of God. Do not shrink back from the battle that God may be leading you to today. It may be a training ground that is necessary for the calling He has on your life.
If you can trust Him in these times, you'll know that you have gained a faith that will move mountains and will sustain you in the most difficult of circumstances. "Praise be to the Lord my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle." 

Daily Smile:
That’s Politics
    During a terrible storm, all the highway signs were covered with snow. The following spring, the state decided to raise all the signs twelve inches at a cost of six million dollars. “That’s an outrageous price!” said a local farmer, “but I guess we’re lucky the state handled it instead of the federal government.” “Why’s that?”


    “Because knowing the federal government, they’d decided to lower the highways.”



To Read More of The StarLight News, Just Click The Link Below 
Happy Reading

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Happy Wednesday

The Challenges of God’s Call

"The Lord is with you, mighty warrior." Judges 6:12, NIV

At a time when Israel was living in disobedience to the Lord, and behaved in the evil ways of the nations surrounding them, they were oppressed by marauding bands of Midianites.

Midian so impoverished the Israelites that they cried out to the Lord for help. In response to their cry, He sent a prophet who reminded them that the reason for this oppression was because they have been disobedient and not listened to the Lord.

Then the angel of the Lord came to Gideon as he was threshing wheat in a winepress, hiding from the Midianites. The angel said, ‘The Lord is with you, mighty warrior’ (Judges 6:12).

At this, Gideon asks, ‘If the Lord is with us, why has all this happened to us? Where are all His wonders that our fathers told us about? Now the Lord has abandoned us and put us in the hands of Midian.’

Then the Lord says, ‘Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian’s hand. Am I not sending you?’

I wonder if there are times when we become a bit like Gideon, when we find the going tough, making feeble attempts to survive and our faith falters to the point of doubt. In such circumstances what is God trying to say to us?

Could it be that God wants us to look back to those experiences of the past, where He brought us out of a severe bondage and oppression, and how He helped and delivered us? This could be the point where He says, ‘Go in the strength you have - My strength. I will be with you, and you will overcome this problem.’

When we know we have drifted from the Lord, and we’re aware of our own weakness and inability, and yet we recognize the power of The Lord’s presence, we’re on the road to victory, whatever the enemy might throw against us. God being with one individual results in a powerful majority.

Like Gideon, there may be things we need to put right before we go into battle. We may need to put aside some things we consider essential for success. But when the Lord has promised ‘I will be with you, and you will be successful’, we can rest assured that this will be the outcome. Again, it is all a matter of dealing with any sin, and responding to God’s call with an obedient heart.

Prayer: O Lord God, please forgive me for those times when I’m disobedient to You and help me to recognize that You’re still with me and ready to help. Forgive me for those times I doubt and question where You are in a situation. Please enable me to recognize that however helpless and hopeless I might feel, You’re always with me to help me be an over comer, in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Today's Writer : David Silvester

Daily Smile:
A lady who was speeding had an officer pulled her to the side of the road.

She didn't have her seat belt on so as soon as she stopped, she quickly slipped it on before the officer got to her window.

After talking to her about speeding, the officer said, "I see you are wearing your seat belt. Do you believe in wearing it at all times?"

"Yes, I do, officer," she replied.

"Well," asked the officer, "do you always do it up with it looped through your steering wheel?"
 To Read More of The StarLight News, Just Click The Link Below 
Happy Reading 
More Happy Reading: 
     April '12 Paper to be posted by Friday, March 23...
 

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Happy Tuesday

DOING THE IMPOSSIBLE
"`Come,' [Jesus] said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came towards Jesus" (Matthew 14:29 NIV).


Miracles are extraordinary events manifesting divine intervention in human affairs. They are what we consider impossible. Most of the miracles are God's clever responses to impossible situations. It is a fact that God will not come down from heaven to do any miracle. He uses people. At times, the people that He uses are the very ones that the miracles will happen in their lives. This was what happened in the narrative that was found in Matthew 14:25-33. Two people (Jesus and Peter) did something that is impossible: walking on water. One may not be surprised that Jesus walked on water. After all, He is the Lord over everything. However, for Peter, an ordinary man, to do the impossible by walking on water he had to do some things that are worthy of note.


The first thing that Peter did was that he recognized the Lordship of Jesus (verses 25-28a). Earlier, when the other disciples with Peter saw Jesus Christ walking on turbulent water at night, they thought that Jesus was a "ghost." Jesus had to reassure them that it was He. Peter later addressed Jesus as "Lord." Many people also do not recognize Jesus as the Lord because of the circumstances around them.


The second thing that Peter did was that he took initiative (verse 28b). He saw Jesus doing the impossible, and he took the initiative of asking Jesus to ask him also to do the same thing. Our heavenly Father knows what we need, but He wants us to take the initiative of asking Him for them (see Matthew 6:8). No wonder, Jesus asked Peter to come to Him after Peter had taken the initiative.


The third thing that Peter did was that he was ready to leave his comfort zone (that is, the comfort of the boat) (verse 29a). In spite of the fact that the boat was been buffeted by the waves, it was safer to be in the boat than to be out of the boat on the water. 


Psychologically, leaving the other disciples behind in the boat would have been a problem for Peter, but he did not consider that. Anyone that will do the impossible will be ready to leave his/her comfort zone regardless of anything that might cost him/her. Such a person will not be satisfied with the average situation he/she finds him/herself.

Are you ready to do the impossible of walking on the trouble water of your life? Then be ready to do these three highlighted things. 


More of what Peter did to do the impossible will be highlighted next week.

In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor)


Daily Smile:
It was the first day of school, and the first grade teacher decided to see how much her students knew about math. “Steven, can you tell me what is 3 and 2?” 

Steven said, “That’s when you should watch very, very carefully before you swing at the next pitch.”

 To Read More of The StarLight News, Just Click The Link Below 
Happy Reading 
More Happy Reading: 
     April '12 Paper to be posted by Friday, March 23...

Monday, March 19, 2012

Happy Monday

"Taking Aim"
(Author Unknown) [Edited]

A young lady named Sally, relates an experience she had in a seminary class, given by her teacher, who we'll call Brother Smith. She says Brother Smith was known for his elaborate object lessons.

One particular day, Sally walked into the seminary and knew they were in for another fun day. On the wall was a big target and on a nearby table were many darts. Brother Smith told the students to draw a picture of someone that they disliked or someone who had made them angry, and he would allow them to throw darts at the person's picture.

Sally's girlfriend (on her right), drew a picture of a girl who had stolen her boyfriend. Another friend (on her left), drew a picture of his little brother. Sally drew a picture of a former friend, putting a great deal of detail into her drawing, even drawing pimples on the face. Sally was pleased at the overall effect she had achieved.

The class lined up and began throwing darts, with much laughter and hilarity. Some of the students threw their darts with such force that their targets were ripping apart. Sally looked forward to her turn, and was filled with disappointment when Brother Smith, because of time limits, asked the students to return to their seats.

As Sally sat thinking about how angry she was because she didn't have a chance to throw any darts at her target, Brother Smith began removing the target from the wall.

Underneath the target was a picture of Jesus . . .

A complete hush fell over the room as each student viewed the mangled picture of Jesus; holes and jagged marks covered His face and His eyes were pierced out.

Brother Smith said only these words, "In as much as ye have done it unto the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto Me."

No other words were necessary; the tear-filled eyes of each student focused only on the picture of Christ.

"And the King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.' Matthew 25:40


Daily Smile:


What did the tired chess player do?
He took the knight off


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More Happy Reading: 
     April '12 Paper to be posted by Friday, March 23...

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Happy Sunday

Today's Discussion - Gratitude
Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ – Ephesians 5:20
We are here admonished to give thanks for all things. We know we should give thanks for our daily provisions and for the mercy of God in saving us; but sometimes we don't take the time or make the effort to truly thank Him, or to consider all the things for which we should be grateful.

The Apostle Paul frequently expressed his thanks to God for the faith, love and work seen in the churches where he had labored. He acknowledged that these godly fruits were because of God's blessings on them and therefore gave thanks to God. He constantly expressed thankfulness for his godly fellow laborers, but consistently expressed thankfulness to God for even their faithfulness (Romans 1:8; 1 Corinthians 1:4; Philippians 1:3; 1Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Thessalonians 1:3).

Astonishingly, Paul also expressed appreciation for tribulations (Romans 5:3), and even acknowledged that he took pleasure in "infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake" because God's strength is made perfect in weakness (2 Corinthians 12:10). If God's sufficiency is displayed in my insufficiency, Paul said, then I am thankful for each opportunity for His strength to be shown in my weakness.

And above all, the Apostle gave thanks for the Savior. He wrote, "Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift" (2 Corinthians 9:15). Words are inadequate to describe the glory of our Savior Jesus Christ, but we should continually give thanks for Him and His love for us.

Daily Smile:
 During a terrible storm, all the highway signs were covered with snow. The following spring, the state decided to raise all the signs twelve inches at a cost of six million dollars. “That’s an outrageous price!” said a local farmer, “but I guess we’re lucky the state handled it instead of the federal government.” “Why’s that?”

“Because knowing the federal government, they’d decided to lower the highways.”

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Saturday, March 17, 2012

Happy Saturday

God Sees It All
Who can discern his errors? Forgive my hidden faults. Keep your servant also from willful sins; may they not rule over me. Then will I be blameless, innocent of great transgression. --Psalm 19:12-13

Time-lapse photography compresses a series of events into one picture. A photo such as this was published in National Geographic once. The photo was taken from a Rocky Mountain peak during a heavy thunderstorm, and the picture captured a brilliant lightning display that had taken place throughout.

The time-lapse technique created a fascinating, spider-like web out of the individual bolts. They all looked interconnected, but you could definitely see each bolt as it was in its uniqueness.

In such a way, our sin presents itself before the eyes of God. Where we see only isolated or individual acts, God sees the overall web of sin. What may seem insignificant-even sporadic-to us and passes with hardly a notice creates a much more dramatic display from God's panoramic view.

The psalmist wrote, "Who can discern his errors? Forgive my hidden faults. Keep your servant also from willful sins; may they not rule over me. Then will I be blameless, innocent of great transgression."

Sin is truly deceptive (Heb. 3:13), divisive (Isa. 59:1-2), and deadly (Rom. 6:23). And it is destructive to the believer if not recognized (John 8:24).

Sin is sin-no matter how big, small, or sporadic it may seem. We must constantly remain pure and holy before the Lord, asking Him to forgive our transgression every day-those that we know and those that we don't. Thank God He sent his Son, Jesus, to cover those sins by His death on the cross so that we might have freedom through salvation in Him!

PRAYER CHALLENGE: Ask God to make you aware of every sin in your life, so that you can strive to rid yourself of it by the blood of Jesus Christ and live holy before Him. Thank Him for salvation and forgiveness of sins through His death on the cross.


Daily Smile:
A little boy returned from the grocery store with his mom. While his mom put away the groceries, the little boy opened his box of animal crackers and spread them all over the kitchen table.

"What are you doing?" asked his mom.


"The box says you shouldn't eat them if the seal is broken," said the little boy. "I'm looking for the seal."


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Friday, March 16, 2012

Happy Friday

GIVING THANKS ALWAYS
by David Wilkerson
"Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Ephesians 5:20).

This matter of giving thanks always was so important in Paul's theology, he repeats it three times. (1) "Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs," (2) "Singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord," and (3) "Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Ephesians 19-20).

Without faith we cannot do this as we ought. We are pressed down by so many problems and distresses. Of course God does not want us to fake it. It seems to me Paul has given us the key to it all when he tells us, ".do it unto the Father." That great preacher John Calvin said that such singing and giving thanks always is all feigning and hypocrisy unless we are fully persuaded that God is our Father.

Our mouths quiver sometimes with grief so that we cannot sing; we do not feel like giving thanks. Dire circumstances shatter our spirits. There are times the heart cries, "Lord, do you really expect me to sing and make melody when I Hurt so badly?" "Lord, I am so burdened down with cares, I can barely lift my head." "Lord, I find it hard to praise and speak hymns in my heart. There is too much fear, grief and doubt."

Yes, it is not easy to respond to this important truth. God is not severe with us when we hurt. We are his children. But these words are given us to find solace and relief in such times. We become so focused on our difficulties that we lose more than our song-we drift further and further away from God's eternal promises. In spite of all we face, our Lord says, "GIVE THANKS ALWAYS."

We become ungrateful for all he has done in the past. We get swallowed up in praying only for ourselves, our needs, our families-we cannot lift up our eyes to other's suffering-suffering more than us.

I am truly convicted by this word from Paul. I want to face tomorrow determined to sing to my Lord and give thanks for an entire day-for all things-in all things. It may be an inaudible song; it may be weak at first; but there must be a power in doing it, by faith, or it would not have been repeated three times.

Oh that ten thousand reading this message would endeavor to sing along with me-what a joy it would bring to Father's heart. Then, to follow it up by resting in the truth that God has heard your cry, he is working out the solution even now and every day-so go on giving thanks always and never stop singing love songs to our precious Lord and Savior.



Daily Smile:
Mrs. Swanson declined to serve on the jury because she was not a believer in capital punishment and didn’t want her beliefs to get in the way of the trial.

“But, Madam,” said the public defender, who had taken a liking to her kind face and calm demeanor, “this is not a murder trial. It is merely a civil lawsuit being brought by a wife against her husband. He gambled away the fifteen thousand dollars he’d promised to spend on a chinchilla coat for her birthday.” 

“Hmmm,” reflected Mrs. Swanson. “Okay, I’ll serve, I could be wrong about capital punishment.”

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Thursday, March 15, 2012

Happy Thursday

Today's Discussion - Sin and Its Effects
by Kunal Michaels
Exhort one another daily, while it is called Today; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin – Hebrews 3:13

We cannot help but notice from this exhortation the deceitfulness of sin, the swiftness with which it can deceive us, and the urgency with which we must battle against it.

Sin lies to us, causing us to harden our hearts and draw away from God in unbelief (12). When we give in to any sin, we are not able to think as clearly and joyfully and trustingly as before.

Whether the sin is lust or anger or pride or greed, sin deceives us into thinking that satisfaction is found somewhere else than in God. It promises fulfillment through sensual pleasure, or putting others down, or lifting ourselves up, or gaining more "stuff."

But this is a lie. True and lasting joy is only found in the path and presence of the living God. Everything else is just a dead, limp substitute that has been painted and polished and perfumed to look enticing.

But how swiftly we give in to the lie! The writer reminds us that we need daily exhorting, lest sin have its hardening effect on our hearts. We can walk faithfully for a week, a decade, or half a lifetime and then suddenly fall in a day! Constant vigilance, and the exhortation of others, is needed in order to avoid sin's pitfalls today, no matter how successful we've been so far.

Finally, the writer presses the urgency of our situation. It is only called "Today" for 24 hours! Then tomorrow will come, and soon the end of all days. Do not put off the vital work of repentance and faithfulness. Today is already almost over, and our Lord that much closer to returning.

Daily Smile:
Peter called his doctor’s office for an appointment. “I’m sorry,” said the receptionist, “we can’t fit you in for at least two weeks.”

“But I could be dead by then!”

“No problem. If your wife lets us know, we’ll cancel the appointment.”


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Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Happy Wednesday

If Only
by T. Suzanne Eller

“But godliness with contentment is great gain.” 1 Timothy 6:6 (NIV)

Have you ever lived in the land of the “if onlys”?

If only I had more money, then things would be easier.

If only I lost 10 pounds, then I’d be happier.

If only they’d recognize my talent, then I’d feel more appreciated.

Not too long ago my husband and I were praying about his career. Not only did the answer not come, but every door shut that we thought would open easily. As time passed I started listing my “if onlys.”

If only we had clear direction.

If only we could begin that dream God placed in our hearts. If only, if only, if only …

Soon those unspoken words steered my thought life. They crept into my prayer time. They tiptoed into my relationship with my husband.

One day these words from King’s Cross by Timothy Keller leaped from the page:

The Bible says that our real problem is that every one of us is building our identity on something besides Jesus. Whether it’s to succeed in our chosen field or to have a certain relationship—or even to get up and walk—we’re saying, “If I have that, if I get my deepest wish, then everything will be okay.

Suddenly I saw myself. My deepest wish had shifted. Where once I longed for God, now my thought life and actions revolved around what I didn’t have. What I couldn’t control.

That night I confessed to my husband that I had not only moved into the land of the “if onlys” but had anchored there. I promised that instead of focusing on what wasn’t taking place, I would began to treasure what I did have.

Today we have food. We have shelter. Our home is warm. Thank You for that gift, Father.

Today I hold a grandbaby in my arms. See her precious smile? I delight in that, Lord.

Today I sit in the living room and laugh with my husband. Thank You for joy.

Today and everyday I am Yours, Jesus. You are more than enough.

Godly contentment isn’t passive, but an active faith that says God is enough. You and I are okay because our deepest wish doesn’t revolve around losing 10 pounds, our career, another person, or whether we’re noticed for our efforts.

Are you living in the land of the “if onlys”? If so, are you willing to change your deepest wish from the “if only” to focusing on what you have and thanking God for it?

Dear Lord, I trust that You are enough and You are good. You are my sufficiency. I find my identity and joy in You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.


Daily Smile:
A young man just had his first customer, which turned out to be a BIG BURLY truck driver. The young man walked up to the table where the truck driver was sitting and asked; can I take your order sir? 

The truck driver replied, sure kid I want three flat tires and two headlights. 

The young man was very puzzled and said, I beg your pardon? 

The truck driver said again, look kid; I want three flat tires and two headlights. 

The young man was still puzzled, but replied; yes sir, whatever. The young man then took the request to his boss who was the head cook. He told him about the truck driver's order, and that he wanted three flat tires and two headlights, “I think he's in the wrong place.” 

The head cook said, I know what he wants, he wants three flap jacks and two eggs sunny side up; the truck driver is just trying to be smart, I know him. 

 The cook said to the waiter here, take this bowl of beans, give it to him and say this. 

The truck driver said, Listen kid, I didn't order this; I said I wanted three flat tires and two headlights. 

The waiter replied, Well sir, the head cook said while you wait for your parts, you can gas up!

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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Happy Tuesday

Did you know that Friday the 13th falls on a Tuesday this month???
 
GREAT IS THY FAITHFULNESS
"Through the Lord's mercies we are not consumed, Because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness" (Lamentations 3:22-23, NKJV).


Almost all the Christian hymns have touching and striking stories that made their composers to compose them. Interestingly, the popular hymn - "GREAT IS THY FAITHFULNESS" - did not have any such story. The writer of the hymn, Thomas O. Chisholm, confessed that there were no special circumstances that prompted him to write this great hymn. He got his inspiration just from his experience and Bible truth. He said in a letter written in 1941 that in spite of the fact that his small income as a result of impaired health in his earlier years, he was aware of the unfailing faithfulness of a covenant-keeping God and that God had given him many wonderful displays of His providing care.


In the hymn, like Jeremiah in his lamentations, Chisholm declared that because the compassion of God never fails, great is the faithfulness of God. God renews this faithfulness during summer, winter, springtime and harvest, in fact, every morning. This faithfulness is manifested in the courses of sun, moon, and stars above. The whole nature joins in witnessing this faithfulness. The faithfulness includes pardon for sin and an enduring peace, God's cheering and guiding presence, strength for today, bright hope for tomorrow, and countless blessings. Indeed great is the faithfulness of God!


You are also experiencing this faithfulness of God every day. Do you realize this? If yes, do you appreciate God for it? If you do not realize it, it means you are not focusing on God and you have placed your trust either in yourself or any other thing apart from God. Focus on God and you will have many reasons to declare His faithfulness over your life.


Great is thy faithfulness, O God!


In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor)


Every day with Jesus
Every day with Jesus
Is sweeter than the day before
Every day with Jesus
I love Him more and more.
Jesus saves and keeps me
And He's the one I'm waiting for
Every day with Jesus
Is sweeter than the day before


Daily Smile:
Little Johnny comes home from his first day of school. His mother asks, "What did you learn in school today?"

Little Johnny calmingly replied, "Not much. They want me back tomorrow. "


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Monday, March 12, 2012

Happy Monday

Today's Discussion - Repentance
I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the LORD; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin – Psalm 32:5
Two things we are clearly meant to take away from this account: sin must be confessed and, when it is, sin will be forgiven.

The psalmist reports that he was brought to the place of acknowledging his sin. He was not trying to hide it, or justify it, or excuse it. He held nothing back during his confession; he admitted to God his every fault and failing.

As he freely admits his sin to the Lord, we should notice, the psalmist also freely acknowledges it as sin (not just a mistake or personality flaw). He confesses his transgressions to the Lord. They are his (no one else is to blame) and they are transgressions (willful offenses against the law of God).

Have you gone to the Lord in confession and owned up to your own willful disobedience and pride? Have you utterly opened your heart to Him, acknowledging the wrongs you have done against his good and just law?

Then—but only then—will we have the same assurance in which the psalmist rejoices, that our sin is forgiven and every transgression pardoned. What a sweet, powerful thing is a clean conscience before our holy God!

Do not delay the repentance that God deserves or the forgiveness that you need.


Daily Smile:
A young man, who was in love with a girl and wanted to marry her, went to his dad and asked: "Daddy, how much does it cost to get married?

His father replied, "I don't know, son. I'm still paying for it."

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Happy Sunday & Happy Daylight Savings Time

If you forget to spring forward one hour????? You Are LATE!!!

A Childlike Amazement
By Steve Troxel, God's Daily Word Ministries

Matthew 18:3 "And He (JESUS) said: 'I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.'"

When my daughter was four years old, we read about young Samuel. While discussing this story, my daughter showed me the excited faith God calls us to maintain. Perhaps her faith could teach us all...

As a young boy, Samuel was ministering with an old priest named Eli. One night God called to Samuel, but Samuel thought it was Eli's voice. Eli said he didn't call and told Samuel to go back to bed. After God called a few more times, Samuel realized who was calling and answered: "Speak, for Your servant is listening" (1 Samuel 3:10). God then gave Samuel a message - but the message was all about Eli.

My daughter asked, "Why did God speak to Samuel if the message was really to Eli?" We talked about how we must be ready and willing to hear God. I said Eli may have had some problems or distractions in his life which kept him from hearing God, so God spoke His message through a child. I said little kids (like her) can often hear God better than older people (like me).

"But, I don't hear God talk to me," she said, with a little disappointment in her voice. I explained how God doesn't usually speak so we can hear Him with our ears; rather, His Spirit speaks to our heart and we hear Him as we listen to our heart. Her little eyes widened, "Like today when I was going to sit on one of the baby toys - Jesus told my heart I was too big and shouldn't do it so I listened to what He said."

I encouraged her that this is exactly how God speaks to us, we just need to learn how to listen and then obey. My daughter thought for a moment and then slowly shook her head in amazement: "Wow! That's sooooo cool!!"

Heavenly Father, I pray that Your Word never becomes just an interesting collection of stories. You created us, loved us, and will one day call us Home to be with You for all eternity - and Father, that's sooooo cool!! Help us to come into Your presence with a thankful and loving heart. Strengthen our faith every day and allow us to continually look on You and Your wonders with a childlike amazement.  Amen


Daily Smile:
Steven was invited to an old friend's home for dinner. His buddy preceded every request to his wife by endearing terms, calling her Honey, My Love, Darling, Sweetheart, etc. Steven was impressed, since the couple had been married almost 50 years.

While the wife was off in the kitchen, he said to his buddy: "I think it's wonderful that after all the years you've been married, you still call your wife those pet names."


His buddy hung his head. "To tell you the truth," he said, "I forgot her name about ten years ago."