Monday, December 20, 2010
Friday, December 17, 2010
Sunday, November 28, 2010
Being able to travel freely is a new experience for some IJM clients. While trapped in slavery, even if granted permission to temporarily leave the facility, forced laborers are often required to leave a family member behind as “collateral” to ensure their swift return. They watch those who try to escape suffer brutal beatings. Every day, they are reminded that they live in a confined world; they are not free to leave, to move.
IJM Bangalore clients, including Theerthagiri (top image, far left), test out their new bicycles.After partnering with local authorities to rescue victims of slavery, IJM walks alongside the former slaves, empowering them to rebuild their lives after years inside the brick kiln, rock quarry or rice mill. And as part of this process, IJM Bangalore invests in clients’ futures by presenting them with their own bicycles. Regional Aftercare Manager Robert Amirtharaj explains: “IJM decided to give bicycles to released victims when we realized the potential this simple, often taken for granted provision could have on the lives of deserving victims and their families.”
We realized the potential this simple, often taken for granted provision could have.— Robert Amirtharaj, IJM Regional Aftercare Manager Being able to travel for work opens up new opportunities: Rather than settling for underpaid work and treatment reminiscent of their former bondage simply because a job is nearby, these men and women can take advantage of expanded options to secure adequate compensation for their labor.As one client explains, “I take the bicycle and I go to work in a town five kilometers from here. When I go there for work, I get paid more there than at my village.” “Now we are happy to go to work” Theerthagiri, who was rescued from slavery in a brick kiln in May 2009 and received a bicycle in October 2009, conveys how the bicycle has impacted his life: “Since receiving the bicycle, [my wife and I] are happy… I used to feel discouraged … because I had to travel such long distances… [But] having the bicycle helps me look around for work. Finding work has become relatively easy now that we have a way to get around. Now we are happy to go to work, even if it’s farther away…We can get there in time and go back home afterward.”
Saturday, November 27, 2010
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Sunday, July 11, 2010
We lose sight of what is true.
Productivity become our idol
Always seeking more to do.
It's a trap we all fall into,
Thinking more is always best.
Relaxing seems a waste of time
The world keeps moving faster.
Feeling worthless when we're tired;
And need a break from life's cruel race.
Lord, You never called it lazy
It's in those quiet moments
That Your presence can shine through.
Let us just remember
As we go about our days
In His presence rest is given
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Friday, July 2, 2010
Thursday, July 1, 2010
Sitting amidst the raging sea
A storm of great intensity,
Threatens to over turn the boat
I've used to keep my life afloat.
Ferocious winds whirling around
Create a chaotic deafening sound.
Infiltrating mass confusion,
Injecting doubt with fierce intrusion.
I brace myself, holding tight,
At Satan's attempt to shake my life.
Breeding fear with my boat's destruction;
Tearing at it's sound construction.
But I've got faith in the One who saves.
I'll look to Him to calm the waves,
And quell the worries in my mind...
In trusting Him, true peace I'll find.
In the midst of this impending storm
I'll find myself mended instead of torn,
Because Jesus is there in the boat with me.
Comforting, strengthening,and setting me free.
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
Monday, May 10, 2010
Trust in the Lord with all your heart
Lean not on your own understanding.
When we try to go it on our own
We're in for a bumpy landing.
Faith in God requires action
Stepping out, so fear steps back
Relying on God to move us forward
Any way else, our courage will lack.
If we find ourselves looking inward
Dwelling on our own efficiency
The only answer is acknowledging God
Submitting to His sufficiency.
Then we can rest in God's provision
Faithful, He meets all our needs.
Never will we have to worry
When we walk the way our Father leads.
Let us then take heart, and not grow weary
With our hope in Christ, we're not alone
Each step we take, we lay up treasure
For the day our Father calls us home.
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Pondering His word
Delighting in His way
Praying through the day
Humbled by what He has to say.
Resting in His hands
He eases life's demands
Comforting my pain
Peace and joy exclaimed
Shining sunbeams through the rain.
Showered by His grace
Puts a smile on my face
Praise to Him I sing
My heart to Him I bring
Giving to Him thanks in everything.
Monday, March 29, 2010
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
1 O LORD, you have searched me
2 You know when I sit and when I rise;
3 You discern my going out and my lying down;
4 Before a word is on my tongue
5 You hem me in—behind and before;
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
7 Where can I go from your Spirit?
8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
10 even there your hand will guide me,
11 If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me
12 even the darkness will not be dark to you;
13 For you created my inmost being;
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
15 My frame was not hidden from you
16 your eyes saw my unformed body.
17 How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!
18 Were I to count them,
19 If only you would slay the wicked, O God!
20 They speak of you with evil intent;
21 Do I not hate those who hate you, O LORD,
22 I have nothing but hatred for them;
23 Search me, O God, and know my heart;
24 See if there is any offensive way in me,
Monday, March 15, 2010
Sunday, March 14, 2010
I think we can all relate to the apostle Paul and the story of the thorn in his side, given to keep him humble and leaning on God's strength. (2 Corinthians 12: 1-10) We can also relate to the life of David, who loved God so much but found himself in all kinds of trouble and trials before God lifted Him up to his prosperous position. (1 &2 Samuel and Psalms) And Elijah who believed God to win a battle but then turned around and doubted Him when he heard that Jezebel wanted to have him killed.(1 Kings 19) It seems in some things we can easily trust God will handle the storms in our lives and in others, we get in our heads that this next storm must be too big and we withdraw from Him. I can almost hear God asking as He did Elijah" What are you doing here?"(after he ran for His life, from fear and discouragement.)
That's the question we need to ask ourselves ..."What are we doing here?" Are we trusting God in our storm or are we withdrawing, fighting our on our own and forgetting God in the process?
Discouragement can be looming enemy in our life. Once allowed to take root, It does just what it's name reveals...it takes our courage, replacing it with fear, doubt, anxiety, and self -centeredness. It isolates, stripping us of God's perspective.
We are no different than those great men from the bible. God put their stories in His word to show us the way, encourage us to keep our faith, comfort us in our trials, and reveal that it is in His power and timing that His purposes are accomplished. God says "humble yourselves before Me and I will lift you up."
Sometimes we need a little or a lot of help getting to that humble state. We feel justified to stew in our self righteousness. God is not interested in our works, successes, or victories in the world...His interest lies in our hearts. Till we come to Him with our broken and contrite heart/spirit, we will not experience his full presence. We have to come to the end of ourselves before we can live in God's power and presence. The offer is open, He beckons us to come and lay our burdens at His feet. He invites us to cast our cares on Him, He tells us over and over to take courage and not to fear. And yet somehow it's easier for us to hold on to the discouragement that infiltrates our lives. Why? Why is it that when we are offered treasures and jewels we settle for mud and rocks? We proclaim to believe in God...but do we really believe Him? Think about it. Will you trust Him? As Peter stepped out of the boat onto the water, we too must keep our eyes fixed on Jesus as we step out of our own boat, and just as Peter, when we find ourselves sinking...we need to cry our to the Lord, grab His hand and continue along the water...the only other option is drowning in the storm! (Matthew 14:22-35)
So let's choose to get ourselves out of His way, let's choose His encouragement over the enemies discouragement. Storms will come. They may last long. But with our hearts and eyes fixed on Jesus, we can rest assured that the storms of life will not destroy us.
God extracts the courage from our discouragement when weather the storms of life in trust and obedience to Him.
Saturday, March 13, 2010
Thursday, March 11, 2010
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Sunday, March 7, 2010
Saturday, March 6, 2010
Thursday, March 4, 2010
Our worth is not measured by material successes or possessions but rather by the successes of the heart and those characters of God possessed with in it. It is so easy to be sucked into focusing our problems, but where does that lead? Unfortunately only to more problems. When we focus on the promises of God however, we have hope; because God is all good and when we choose to believe what He says we can approach His throne of grace with confidence and know that His grace over our lives abound.
So many times we look to God for the things He can do for us, but we so often forget to ask what we can do for Him. When you really think about it, God was not created for us, but we for Him. As I went through the painstaking possibility of once again losing my son, it hit me, God loves him so much more than I ever could. God has a plan and purpose for his life, and God will use this for His glory somehow. So what is my role here? I want to glorify God with my reactions. I heard God's voice say trust Me. I serve the God who has put the planets, stars and moon in place, created mountains, land, and sea. He fashioned each human being, with unique and intricate detail. Knowing this, how could I NOT trust Him? God holds the universe, our world, and each one of us lovingly in the palm of His hands, he always has our best interests in mind.
All who belong to God are family, family sticks together, and I am forever grateful to be part of it!
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
Monday, March 1, 2010
I started writing this collection of poetry a few years ago, during a difficult time in my life. In many ways it is my journey with God through that time. Thus I entitled it "Hand in Hand with God" He has been my "coach" so to speak, in this experience, and I give Him all the credit for training me to score!
I wanted to share a little bit about this journey in my life, because I think so many times God uses difficult circumstances to reveal the direction and purpose He has for our lives. He reveals diamonds in the hard, dirty walls of our caves, and shines light and perspective in dark places of our lives. God brings beauty from ashes, and turns mourning to gladness.
God has taken the ashes in my life and transformed them into something beautiful as only He can. I look forward to sharing more as publication nears and especially to share God's love with you.
Sunday, February 28, 2010
Saturday, February 27, 2010
The Truth Principle
Do you struggle to live out God's truth from your heart? Many Christians know more truth than they actually apply. Leslie offers a unique 5-step process called The TRUTH Principle that will help you:
· Respond to difficult situations without losing your temper or your faith.
· Break free from internal lies in order to fully embrace Gods' truth.
· Develop the discipline to take your desires from dreams to reality.
Lord, I Just Want to Be Happy
It's not the new circumstances we often pray for that move us toward lasting happiness, but rather something entirely different. Drawing on her own struggles and those of people she has counseled, and using scriptural insights in fresh ways, Leslie offers practical and simple steps to help you:
· Recognize and change habits that, day by day, keep you from experiencing happiness.
· Develop the skills that will enable you to let go of negative and painful emotions quicker.
· Transform difficult circumstances so you can live with gratitude, joy, and purpose.
Leslie will be doing a video shoot during these presentations and welcomes community participation. Please post this information in your church bulletin and announce it from the pulpit. If you'd like to receive a publicity flyer via email that can be posted at your church, please contact our office at (610) 298-2842.
by author and counselor
Friday, March 19, 2010
7:00 pm at
6528 Hamilton Blvd.
Allentown, PA 18106
For more information
610-298-2842 or www.faithefc.com
To register for this free event, please call our office at 610-298-2842 or email us at email@example.com Christ Centered Counseling PO Box 784 Fogelsville, PA 18051
Saturday, February 20, 2010
"No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it." Hebrews 12:11
"Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent." Rev. 3:19
Friday, February 19, 2010
Mary DeMuth, Author and speaker, Mary DeMuth helps people turn their trials to triumph. Her books include Ordinary Mom, Extraordinary God; Building the Christian Family You Never Had; Watching the Tree Limbs; Wishing on Dandelions; Authentic Parenting in a Postmodern Culture and the first two books in the Defiance, Texas Trilogy: Daisy Chain and A Slow Burn.National media regularly seek Mary’s candid ability to connect with their listeners. Her radio appearances include FamilyLife Today, Moody Midday Connection, Point of View and U.S.A. Radio Network and is frequently featured on Chuck Colson’s BreakPoint. She has published articles in In Touch, HomeLife, Writer’s Digest and The Writer.Mary lives with her husband Patrick and their three children in Texas.
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
"...When God spoke from Mount Sinai his voice shook the earth, but now he makes another promise: “Once again I will shake not only the earth but the heavens also.” This means that all of creation will be shaken and removed, so that only unshakable things will remain. Since we are receiving a Kingdom that is unshakable, let us be thankful and please God by worshiping him with holy fear and awe. For our God is a devouring fire.(Hebrews 12:26-29)
Singing His praises all day
Hiding His word in my heart
Coming before Him to pray.
Delighting in His commands
Loving Him in all I do and say.
Trusting God for all my needs
Walking in His way
Obediently I'll follow
And in His presence I will stay.
Fix your eyes on Jesus...especially knowing that the things of this world will pass away. Do not let any obstacle keep you from God's presence...He is the source of your strength continually call Him to mind...He helps replaces all feelings of dread with His perspective and peace of resting in His strong arms. Unceasingly "consider Him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart." (Hebrews 12:3)
Sunday, February 14, 2010
Entangled by the toils, temptations, and troubles of daily living, not to mention those lies we believe from the past, the stress of finances, wayward children, troubled marriages, financial difficulties, mood disorders, jam packed days, sleepless nights, caring for elderly parents, and the list goes on... have a tendency to hold us captive and hinder our walking in freedom with God, keeping us from the person God intends us to be. God has a predestined plan for each of us to carry out in His kingdom here on earth.
So how do we throw all these things off so we can run the race set out for us?(Hebrews 12:1-12) How do we grab hold our freedom offered us as followers of Christ? We need to know him. We need to spend time in his presence,we need to become fully dependent upon him and live out of the strength He provides. We need to become aware of our weaknesses and quickly repent of our sins, becoming willing and thankful for the discipline he brings to our lives. We need to be in constant communion with Him. Placing our full faith in His word. When this way of living becomes our goal and our passion, we make room for Gods power to work in us and through us. The chaos in our lives will no doubt still be there, but our perspective in reacting and dealing with it changes. We can see it as a way to bring glory to our great God through our response to it. We know that God will bring us through it.
What if you were entering into a game or a business deal or trying to earn your degree for your career and you already knew you were guaranteed to achieve a victory...how would that change the way you approached the project? Do you feel a sense of relief at your impending victory? All You have to do is show up with a willing obedient heart. This is how we as followers of Jesus Christ need to proceed, so that we may walk before the Lord in the land of the living.
When we make it a priority to walk hand in hand with God through the labyrinth of life, we have the promise not to get lost, but navigate through it successfully; but as soon as we let go(because He never will) we lose our footing and our focus. Letting go is the only thing that will trip us up and throw us of course. In letting go we jeopardize the victory. We will eventually make it out and our salvation will be intact, but God offers us so much more, we don't need to just squeak by, when God offers freedom, celebration and abundant life! God's hand is always extended and always close. Will you take hold of it today, so that you may walk with your head held high before the Lord in this world full of trouble and temptation? Will you give Him the emphasis rather than your troubles? He is there and He is waiting. Grab His hand and hold on! Your very life depends on it!
Lord, Thank You for the freedom You offer all who come to You. May we choose You as the strength in our lives, continually coming to You for restoration and refuge. May our walk on this earth be pleasing to You, bringing honor and glory to Your name. Lord I ask You to make Your presence unmistakable for all those lost in the labyrinth of life at this time, that they will reach out their hand to You, admitting their need for You in their life. For it is in You aloneLord, where the victory lies. Thank You for securing this victory for us! Humbly in Your Name I pray,Amen.
Thursday, February 4, 2010
Friday, January 29, 2010
4. Lord I Just Want To Be Happy by Leslie Vernick (non-fiction)
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Monday, January 25, 2010
Thicker than Blood
by C.J. Darlington
Published by Tyndale House
Winner of the
2008 Christian Writers Guild Operation First Novel Contest!
Christy Williams finally has her life on track. She’s putting her past behind her and working hard to build a career as an antiquarian book buyer. But things begin to unravel when a stolen Hemingway first edition is found in her possession, framing her for a crime she didn’t commit. With no one to turn to, she yearns for her estranged younger sister, May, whom she abandoned after their parents’ untimely deaths. Soon, Christy’s fleeing from her shattered dreams, her ex-boyfriend, and God. Could May’s Triple Cross Ranch be the safe haven she’s searching for? Will the sisters realize that each possesses what the other desperately needs before it’s too late?
To my blog readers...Every now and then I like to take time to read, it stretches my imagination and thinking, taking me to places and situations that I would normally not get to experience. As many of you know, I also like to write, and so in my own writing journey I have come across many wonderful authors. When I read a good book I like to pass the good news on! This is most definitely one of those books...Personally I give it 5 stars+. I highly recommend picking up a copy of "Thicker Than Blood", settle into your favorite spot and let this intriguing story carry you away! There are links at the bottom of this post to order from Amazon or Christian Books, or you could go to your local book store, if they don't have it, they can order a copy for you!
Thicker Than Blood is an endearing story of two sisters, who lead very different lives, estranged by tragedy, shame and guilt. C.J. Darlington weaves suspense and very real and raw circumstances so intricately into this book that I had a hard time putting it down. The characters are real, the situations are relatable and each chapter builds upon the next creating such a desire and curiosity to what will happen next. This book is filled with adventure, packed with emotion and wrapped with a ribbon of God's redeeming love and amazing grace!
With careful attention to detail, emotion, and scene-setting, C.J. Darlington scores with her debut effort. Here is a special writer you won’t want to miss.
--Jerry B. Jenkins, New York Times best selling author
If you love a good read filled with adventure and ultimately redemption, I encourage you to brew the tea, settle into your favorite chair and pick up the page turner that is C.J. Darlington’s imaginative new novel of a modern day sisterhood that triumphs over separation and the raw challenges of life to find the real endurance of both family ties and God’s amazing grace.
--Rebecca St. James, Grammy award winning Christian singer and bestselling author
With Thicker than Blood, C.J. Darlington proves she's a novelist for the long-haul, a strong new voice in Christian fiction. This book speaks to the heart, from the heart, about the heart. Readers will not soon forget it.
--Sibella Giorello, Christy award-winning author of The Rivers Run Dry & The Clouds Roll Away
About the Author:
C. J. began writing the story that would become Thicker than Blood (her first novel) when she was a fifteen-year-old homeschool student. She has been in the antiquarian bookselling business for over a decade, scouting for stores similar to the one described in the novel before cofounding her own online bookstore. Thicker than Blood was the winner of the 2008 Christian Writers Guild Operation First Novel.
C. J. co-founded the Christian entertainment Web site TitleTrakk.com with her sister, Tracy, and has been actively promoting Christian fiction through book reviews and author interviews. She makes her home in Pennsylvania with her family and their menagerie of dogs and cats. Visit her website http://www.cjdarlington.com/ for more info.