Tag Archives: around

While I Kept Partying, My Parents Kept Praying – Part 2: Something Was Missing

There was something that relationships, drugs and wild parties just couldn't fill.

Written by Luis Palau
Tags: Partying, Testimony
This article was written by Andrew Palau.

By the time I attended the University of Oregon, I blended right in with my fraternity buddies. On the outside it seemed like I was a happy guy and could juggle classes, work, and the party life. But on the inside I was miserable.

I felt guilty about so many of the poor choices I had made because they were diametrically opposed to the way that I had been brought up. It seemed like there was a void in my life- that something was missing. Something that relationships, and drugs, and wild parties just couldn’t fill.

A sense of emptiness continued, even after I graduated from college and began working in Boston. I kept partying, felt no peace, and drank to hide the pain inside. I felt like I was sinking into the depths of despair. I would look into a mirror and ask myself, What really matters? Where can I go?

At that point, it was as though God tapped me on the shoulder and said, Andrew, look at your parents’ example. What does your dad care about most?

I couldn’t get away from the answer. The center of Dad’s life is the Gospel. He had preached about it around the world, and had written dozens of books. Books I had never read, even though I was an English literature major.

Finally, not knowing where to turn, I pulled Dad’s book, “Say Yes! How to Renew Your Spiritual Passion” off of the shelf and actually read it. Although I was convinced that what Dad wrote about Jesus Christ was true, my heart was still not convicted.

If you've been far away from God sometime in your life, how did God begin to gently draw you to Himself? What advice would you give someone who is related to a person living far from God? 

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Care for People All Around You

The book of Ruth in the Old Testament tells a beautiful story about love and loyalty among family.

Written by Hope on 28/04/2013
Series: Weekly Devotional
Tags: God, Love, Loyalty, Relationships
"And may the Lord make your love for one another and for all people grow and overflow, just as our love for you overflows." (1 Thessalonians 3:12)

The book of Ruth in the Old Testament tells a beautiful story about love and loyalty among family.

Naomi, an Israelite, had traveled with her husband and sons to the foreign land of Moab to escape a famine. Her sons married local women, one of them being Ruth. When the husband and the sons died, Naomi chose to return to Israel and her people.

Love Each Other
Naomi and her daughters-in-law loved each other dearly. Wanting them to be provided for, Naomi urged them to remain in Moab to remarry. However, Ruth chose to stay with Naomi, dedicated to serving her mother-in-law — and God. She demonstrated a love and loyalty the Apostles Paul and John would describe many years later: “those who won’t care for their relatives, especially those in their own household, have denied the true faith” (1 Timothy 5:8) and “those who love God must also love their Christian brothers and sisters” (1 John 4:21).

Avoid Evil and Pray
In Israel, Ruth provided for herself and Naomi by gathering leftover grain. She chose a field owned by Boaz, one of Naomi’s distant relatives. Boaz told Ruth to keep gathering on his land, where she’d be safe from dangerous men elsewhere. This mirrors God’s warning to His people against close contact with those who chose evil: “If you do, you will follow their evil ways and be trapped” (Exodus 34:12). If we can’t avoid harm, though, Jesus said to “Pray for those who hurt you” (Luke 6:28). We should avoid evil ways, but care about, and pray for, people who choose evil.

Care – No Matter What
Naomi loved Ruth, wanting to see her married and settled. She instructed Ruth to ask Boaz to take care of her (and Naomi) by marrying Ruth. Although Ruth was a poor foreigner, Boaz treated her with godly care and agreed. Jesus spoke of providing for others: “when you [cared for] one of the least of these people, you [cared for] Me” (Matthew 25:40). We, too, should show godly concern for others, especially those in need.

When Ruth chose to go with Naomi rather than stay with her own people, she said, “Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God” (Ruth 1:16).

Naomi’s devotion to the Living God caused Ruth to turn from the idols of her native Moab. Wouldn’t it be awesome if your love for God and for people would inspire others to turn from sin and follow God?

Prayer, Care and Share Jesus
Care for people in need around you!

Scripture: "Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me"

Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, and thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?'

"The King will reply, 'Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.' (Matthew 25:35-40)

The Prayer, Care & Share Jesus guide, encourages you to care for people around you because of what Jesus said in the Bible. People in the passage above could hardly believe that Jesus compared their deeds for others to the way they served Jesus. But, it is really that important to Jesus because his love and care is unconditional and he wants us to live like He did as much as we can.

How do we care for people the way Jesus would every day? Be aware of the needs of people around you – for the homeless, the poor, the hungry, the broken, the discouraged. Use the Prayer Care Share guide as a way to reach out to them. Pray for God's blessing and care, on them. Prepare yourself to care for them. Remember, Jesus did warn that sometimes, the person he wants us to help, may be a person that we don’t want to help. But, he tells us to even love and pray for our enemies.

When someone has a need, you can help them or encourage them. Or if you can’t solve the problem, ask the Lord to solve it.

There are all kinds of things that cause people to be in need. Take a moment and think about ways people in your life may need to be cared for right now. They may be saying things like:

My child is ill.
My brother was wounded in battle.
I have no money for transport to go home today.
My mother is an alcoholic.
My computer crashed and I don’t know how to fix it.
I am writing an important test tomorrow and am worried about it.
I need a job.
When you hear this, it’s possible the Lord has called you to care for them. How will you respond to His call?

Pray this week:

The book of Ruth in the Old Testament tells a beautiful story about love and loyalty among family.

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Speak Blessings To Everything Around You

God wants us to take His Word to the nations, and
that means a lot. But you see, when He said to
preach the Gospel to every creature, He wasn’t only referring
to preaching to someone who doesn’t know Jesus. Preaching
the Gospel to every creature means preaching to
EVERYTHING that exists! Romans 8:19 says, “For the earnest
expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of
the sons of God.”
The term “creature” actually means “creation.” So, it’s
saying, “The earnest expectation of the creation waits for the
manifestation of the sons of God.” There’s depreciation in the
human world, including human life; and so, everything in life
is waiting for your manifestation; waiting for you to liberate
them. All around the world, there’s fear. Many scientists
provide evidence of ozone layer depletion. Global warming
remains an issue of widespread political debate, with world
leaders in dire need of a solution.
These things aren’t new; the scientists only just found
out. The Bible already talked about them: The twentieth verse
of Romans chapter eight says, “For the creature (creation)
was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of
him who hath subjected the same in hope.” The creation was
made subject to vanity; no wonder it’s in terrible depreciation,
groaning in pain. And we’re the ones to bring that deliverance
to all creation through the Gospel.
Revelation 21:5 says, “And he that sat upon the throne
Speak Blessings To Everything
Around You
THURSDAY
31
said, Behold, I make all things new….” The renewal has begun.
Preach the Word to the things in your home and they’ll have
new values. Speak the Word to your finances and they won’t
depreciate. Proclaim the Word over your physical body and
it’ll never be ravaged by sickness, disease, and infirmities.
Speak blessings to things around you.
Use the Word to rule your world! In your home,
school, or place of work, speak blessings. For your country,
do the same; speak words of blessings, for the Bible says,
“By the blessing of the upright the city is exalted…” (Proverbs
11:11).
CONFESSION
I bring deliverance to every
creation in my world, taking them
out of bondage and corruption,
into the glorious liberty of the
sons of God. I give life to the
things around me through the
power of my words, for these are
the days of the manifestation of
the sons of God. Hallelujah!
1 YEAR BIBLE
READING PLAN:
Luke 8:40-56
Joshua 7-9
2 YEAR BIBLE
READING PLAN:
Romans 5:1-11
Psalm 103
FURTHER STUDY:
Luke 6:45
Proverbs 18:20-21
Pastor Chris

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People around the world waited in line for 13 hours to buy this new phone

It's approaching midnight when the last customer finally scurries out of the door and into the crisp London night. The shop doesn't normally keep such late hours, but tonight is a special occasion.

The customer stands in the dim light outside of the storefront, giddily looking through the contents of his shopping bag, but it doesn't contain a new suit or any other tailored piece of menswear that would typically be sold during the bespoke tailor’s business hours.

It's a smartphone.

Some arrived 13 hours in advance, to be joined later by hundreds of people anxiously awaiting the store opening at 3pm.
Like hundreds of eager Londoners before him, he had to brave a massive crowd that lined several blocks on Brushfield Street since the early hours of the morning in order to get it. Some arrived 13 hours in advance, to be joined later by hundreds of people who anxiously awaited the store opening at 3pm.

Just hours before, the scene looked the same outside of Colette on Rue Saint Honoré in Paris — before that, outside of Firmament on Mitte, Linienstraße in Berlin.

And as the doors of Joshua Kane locked in London, a line started to form outside of Magnum Soho in New York City.

Over the next few days, thousands of fans flocked to the bustling streets of Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore as the anticipation and excitement spilled over to India. Each location had been transformed, for a mere handful of hours, to accommodate the most anticipated smartphone release of the year.

But this phone — the one that compelled fans across the world to travel up to hundreds of miles to eagerly wait for hours on sidewalks — might not be the one you have in mind.

The phone you'll be willing to wait for
On June 14th, OnePlus launched its newest flagship device, the OnePlus 3. The following day, the phone was made available at a series of pop-up stores across the world. Now, for any casual smartphone user, it would be enough to sit back, order the phone online and patiently wait for the new device to arrive at their doorstep days later.

But for the OnePlus community, waiting isn't in the cards.

Eager to scoop up the phone at the first opportunity, rabid technophiles flooded the streets outside each pop-up location in New York, London, Paris and Berlin.

Thousands showed up for the phone's debut, and each store stayed open longer than anticipated in order to meet the demand.

While they were waiting, some OnePlus fans shared why they were so excited for the new phone, and why they keep coming back to the growing tech player.

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