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Gracious Love

“Gracious love be with all of you.” Heb 13:25 (Simple English Bible)

No one really knows who wrote the Hebrew Letter. Most scholars say Paul did, others opine Apollos or Barnabas. An interesting idea is that Luke translated one of Paul’s sermons or lessons, which then became the amazing book of our New Testament. Early church tradition consistently confirmed that the apostle Paul wrote it, being a rabbi and learned at the feet of a great teacher of the Law, Gamaliel.

Continually, as with most of Paul’s epistles, he used peace and grace in the greetings and salutations. The peace of being God’s child and in a forgiven state with the Father was an important component of Christian living. It promoted boldness and confidence, it provided strength and comfort, it allows the believers to be less concerned with worldly values and more focused on Heavenly ones.

The second component Paul used was grace. The amazing grace of Christ. The overwhelming mercy afforded to all believers, which no one deserved. The hand of God reaching down to lift mankind up. And the love of Jesus, which saves any and all who obey.

Gracious love be with all of you!

Steve

Jack’s $100

“”My dear friends, it is good that you continue to help the brothers — even brothers you do not know.” 2 John 5 (Simple English Bible)

Jack and Rob stopped for gas. They had to wait in line because it was so busy. It was the first day of summer vacation and they were driving to help out at a church a few hours away. The pastor had called and said they needed extra bodies for an intercity program for the homeless and destitute. Finally, it was their turn. Rob filled the car and saw an older man with a backpack approach. He spoke to Jack.

Evidently, the man’s car had broken down and was stuck at the side of the road. He needed $50 to take a bus to get home, where his kids were waiting. Rob was skeptical but his friend questioned the man and then handed him $100! The man set down his backpack and cleaned all the windows of the car before leaving. Rob voiced his skepticism but Jack was of a different mind. He said that they were on their way to help those in real need. The older man said he was a believer but needed help and Jack wanted to do what they’d come to do!

Helping strangers isn’t always clear cut. There are so many scams, tricksters and frauds with emotional tales and stories that cause us to sympathize. But there are others who are in genuine need, too. Christians should help where they can, even if it means, someone who isn’t familiar. Once, we needed help and our Savior was there for us.

Steve

Dancing

“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about learning to dance in the rain.” A wise man

Gerald was unfortunate. When he was a child, his folks were killed in a car accident and he was badly injured. For as long as he could remember, he was partly disabled and nearly deaf. His younger years were a series of painful operations and physio. His grandparents were already retired but they took Gerald in and patiently taught him how to speak despite his hearing loss.

He was in his mid-twenties by the time he graduated from high school and enrolled in a Christian university. Gerald studied hard and tried to make friends but many avoided him because of his strange gait and slurred speech. But he always smiled, always greeted people and patiently pressed ahead despite his loneliness. One day, one of the professors asked Gerald why he wanted to be a missionary in a foreign country. It would be very difficult given his problems. Gerald answered, “Because nobody else is going.”

We all have problems, some greater, some not so serious. If we let our troubles and tribulations hinder us while we wait for a solution, not much will get done! Our Father empowers us. The Holy Spirit guides us. And our Lord has promised to be with us always, even to the end of the age. If you haven’t tried dancing in the rain, maybe you should.

Steve