Verse of the Day – Let’s support one another in our faith

They preached the good news in that city and won a large number
of disciples. Then they returned to Lystra, Iconium and Antioch,
strengthening the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to
the faith.
— Acts 14:21-22

Do you know a new Christian? Paul and Barnabas remind us that it
is difficult becoming a Christian; there are hard times for new
Christians! So let’s make sure we don’t just share the Gospel with
them. Let’s also stand by them, check on them, strengthen them, and
encourage them.

Loving Father, please be with the new Christians in our church.
Use me to be a source of encouragement to them and strength for
them. May my life always be a positive influence on them and other
new Christians as well. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

Daily Promise – October 30 – May we be reminded of who we are and who we belong to

Hebrews 12:28 KJV

Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace,
whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:

Hebrews 12:28

New King James Version (NKJV)

28 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we mayserve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.

Promise #303: I am giving you a kingdom that can never be shaken.
Even the most rock solid mountains on this planet can be shaken. The highest mountain can crumble at the blast of our Father’s nostrils. Wars, rumors of wars, economic recessions, global strife, and many other things can cause even the strongest of men to tremble. Such is the kingdom of this world. It is here today and gone tomorrow.

But the author of Hebrews is speaking of another kingdom that cannot be moved that is our inheritance. It is a kingdom that cannot be shaken. It is a kingdom that is safe and secure and beyond the influence of fallen men. It is a kingdom where the greatest will be the servant of all and its citizens, little children.

We are receiving a kingdom right now that cannot be shaken. Jesus taught us to pray in the Lord’s prayer (Matthew 6:9-11) …your kingdom come, your will be done as it is in heaven. May we never take this kingdom lightly. May the fear of the Lord fill us with an ever increasing awareness of this unshakeable kingdom that we are receiving NOW!

May we be reminded of who we are and who we belong to as we read this Scripture passage that just precedes today’s promise in Hebrews 12: 22-23 (a)… But you have come to Mount Zion, to the heavenly Jerusalem, the city of the living God. You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in joyful assembly, 23to the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. NIV   ~ Barry Adams

God speaks

“Speak, Lord.  I am your servant and I am listening.” 

I Samuel 3:9

We expect God to speak through peace,

but sometimes he speaks through pain…

We think we hear him in the sunrise,

but he is also heard in the darkness.

We listen for him in triumph,

but he speaks even more distinctly through tragedy.

~ Max Lucado

God will conquer death (What is real?)

(My note: What a perfectly timed message that ministers to my heart, and hopefully yours, especially as we celebrate the life of our beloved friend, Lori.)

What is real?

“O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?”

1 Corinthians 15:55 NLT

Redemptive Reality

“Roberto Benigni, who wrote, directed, and starred in Life is Beautiful, is a comic genius who has been called the Italian Charlie Chaplin. But the subject of his 1997 film, the Holocaust, is anything but funny.

Benigni’s character, a sad-sack waiter named Guido, courts the affections of a local schoolteacher and through various hilarious adventures wins her heart. They marry and have a son.

Then things take a dark turn: Father and son, who are Jewish, are sent to a concentration camp. To shield his son from the horrors they’re going through, Guido concocts a wild story, telling the boy that the whole experience is really just an elaborate game.

How did Benigni dare to use humor in a film about a great moral evil? He did it by expressing the Christian idea that there’s more to life than what we see. In the scene in which the father is being led away to be killed, he spots his son and makes a funny face. The message is that there is something that triumphs over even death, some transcendent reality that, even in this ultimate moment of gravity, enables Guido to make his son laugh.

Most of our cultural leaders operate from a purely naturalistic perspective, but Scripture teaches that there are eternal things. Life is Beautiful is not the gospel story, but it does point to the gospel because it’s about how God’s redemptive reality trumps the very worst this world has to offer.”

adapted from How Now Shall We Live? Devotional by Charles Colson (Tyndale) pp 581-82

Content is derived from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation and other publications of Tyndale Publishing House

Update regarding our friend, Lori Kennedy

Thank you all for your wonderful sentiments, prayers, and love.

Here is the latest update:

The service for our friend, Lori Kennedy, will be at 3:00 pm Thursday at the Parent-Sorenson Mortuary, 850 Keokuk St, Petaluma, CA. Phone number is (707) 763-4131 in case you want more specific information. The service will be in the Chapel, with a non-denominational pastor saying a few words, with a total of +/- 30minutes. Her friends and neighbors here at her apartment complex at The Commons on Enterprise Dr in Rohnert Park will have an additional gathering in honor of Lori at a later date to be announced. The coroner is supposed to do the autopsy tonight. If it is an obvious cause of death, then the family will let us know as soon as they know. If they have to do a more involved autopsy, the results may not be available for a few months. We do know that she died between 7:00 pm Friday night, October 21 and 11:30 a.m. Saturday morning. Neighbors and friends had not seen her per her usual routine and called the police, who contacted our apartment complex manager, who let the sheriff into Lori’s apartment, at which time they found her lying on her face in the hallway between the bedroom, bathroom, and living room areas. She had an emergency necklace which she wore constantly, even in the shower. The police or 911 operators had not received any indication from her pushing the button on her necklace. Therefore, we, at this time, assume she died so quickly that she didn’t have time to push the button for help. The family came today and all of us supported them in any way they needed help. Some of the furniture and pictures were removed from her apartment today and given to anyone who expressed an interest in having a memory attached to any of those items. The family will come back tomorrow, Thursday, and Friday at which time we will all wait in the wings for their instruction on how everyone can help. Several people have brought flowers, pumpkins (since she loved pumpkins so much), and a candle and placed them outside Lori’s apartment door. We have all met together quite a few times, including about a 12-hour sitting together on Saturday. We talk our feelings out. I express to them who from her facebook and personal friends are seeking information and sending condolences and tell them about how much each of you cared for Lori. I will continue to update any of you as I get any new information. There will be an announcement of services in the Press-Democrat Newspaper. Do not hesitate to contact me if we can help answer any of your questions or be of help in any other way. We know this is a particularly hard time for all of you who cannot be here personally. I know that your heartfelt expressions of love is appreciated by Lori. God bless each of you. Sharon

Related article:

We just lost one of our best friends

One of our best friends passed away yesterday. We are helping our other friends deal with this loss, and we will be helping the family in dealing with their loss.

Lori was 56 years old, had suffered from Brittle Bone Disease, but coped very well with it. Walking, pulling together neighbors to become friends, hosting holiday feasts, etc. She was one of a kind. A truly beautiful, loving person. One you could never out-give. She will be missed so much, because she was the hub of our community and a dear friend to all of us.

We are all still in shock. She had had an asthma attack that night, but had used her inhaler and everyone thought she was ok. We don’t know the circumstances of her death, except that the sheriff’s office found her lying face down in her hallway. Some of the neighbors had not received their regular morning telephone calls from her, and no one had seen her outside. She usually walked her dog early every morning. So the neighbors called the police and they took it from there. We were not able to see her body, because of the position they found her in. The coroner’s department said he couldn’t let us see her like that. We have to wait until tomorrow to find out about funeral arrangements, and we will be clearing out, and cleaning her apartment. This is going to be so hard for everyone involved.

We would appreciate all of your prayers as we try to minister to these other people.

God bless you and thank you for your prayers and support during this time.

Yours in Christ,

Sharon & Erick

You are Unique

Each of us is an original. 

Galatians 5:26, The Message

There are certain things you can do that no one else can. 

Perhaps it is parenting,

or constructing houses,

or encouraging the discouraged. 

There are things that only you can do,

and you are alive to do them. 

In the great orchestra we call life,

you have an instrument and a song,

and you owe it to God to play them both


~ Max Lucado

Daily Promise – October 21 – He will meet all our needs

2 Corinthians 9:8 KJV

And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye,
always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:

Promise #294: I will meet all your needs so you can overflow with good works.

It is by grace that you are saved, it is God’s gift to us so that we won’t be able to boast about it. (Ephesians 2:8) It is this same grace that abounds to us and meets all of our needs so that we will overflow in every good work. The NIV Bible says 2 Corinthians 9:8 this way… And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. NIV

This Bible verse really speaks of the principle of abundance. God wants us to overflow with His grace at all times and in every situation. I believe the key to this principle of abundance is found in Matthew 10:8. This is where Jesus is sending out His disciples to proclaim the good news of the gospel. His charge is simply this…  ‘freely you have received, freely give‘.

One of the things that I am learning in my walk with God is that I need to be in a place of receiving first before I can have anything to give to others. I am convinced that it is out of the overflow of His love and grace in my own life that others are touched.

So my simple encouragement today is for you to learn to receive all the grace that God wants to give you today. As you receive the abundant, never ending supply that flows from heaven, it will overflow in your life so that you will have all that you need to do every good work that He has planned for you.
Photo by Martin Smith

Who shares your umbrella?

Hello Friend!

The other day an afternoon thunderstorm blew in, cracking and laughing over the autumn-colored hills. I watched the clouds gather and then release raindrops from the hands that spattered the sidewalk.

From a few houses down, two children emerged under an umbrella. They hurried along with smiles on their faces. Each one holding the handle in the middle of them. It wasn’t a storm to be avoided in their lives but an experience to be shared.

That’s how it’s supposed to be, I thought. None of use are meant to walk through the rain alone. 

A gentle thunder send them scurrying inside a house but I lingered at the window and wondered…

Why is it so hard for us to go through life’s storms together?

It seems we either tend to carry the umbrella only for ourselves. We become scared or bitter and we’re afraid to let anyone close. It’s hard for us to give.

Or we are happy to offer our umbrella to others while we become soaked. We’re afraid that if we don’t sacrifice so much then we won’t be loved. It’s hard for us to receive.

But Jesus calls us to that middle place. He asks us to take hold of that handle. “Love one another,” he says. One another–that’s two people under the umbrella, giving and receiving.

Ah, yes. 

My thoughts clear.

The sky does too.

The children reappear and jump in puddles. Shared joy after the rain too. 

And I think I can just see a new bit of sunlight slipping unexpectedly into my day.



p.s. Who shares the storms in your life? {Thanks for sharing mine–I’m so glad you’re here!}


Invisible Pain « BROKEN BELIEVERS.

Excellent message written by a wonderful lady who truly understands Invisible Pain. I encourage anyone who is going through any kind of pain or depression to read what she has written.

We are here to help each other by sharing the love of our Lord in a personal way because of what He does in each of our own lives.

Verse of the Day – Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did

This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him
must walk as Jesus did.
— 1 John 2:5-6

Do you want to know who walks with Jesus each day? Look for
folks whose lives look like his! Do you want to walk with Jesus?
Look at his life in the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John).
See how he treated people; then do the same! Notice how he defeated
Satan and overcame temptation. Trust that you can do the same! As
you do these things, you will find that Jesus is not only walking
with you, he is also working through you!

Stir my spirit, O God, and empower me with your Spirit to live a
life of integrity and purity like Jesus. Please give me a heart for
people, dear Father, like your Son Jesus has. Help me to not only
see their needs and hear their cries, but to also respond with love
and compassion. In the name of my Savior Jesus, I pray. Amen.

What about struggling?

As you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so continue to live in him. 

Colossians 2:6

Struggling with life’s difficulties makes us a little wiser,

a little more capable,

enabling us to comfort others who experience pain.

Any difficulties we face in life are short-lived;

all rewards are eternal. 

A divine inheritance will be our reward for faithfulness

to our heavenly Father.

~ Max Lucado

Daily Promise – October 20 – The angel of the Lord surrounds you and me!

Psalm 34:7 KJV

The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them
that fear him, and delivereth them.

Promise #293: My angels will surround all who fear Me.

There are many references in the Bible that talk about angels and how they relate to God’s people. In Psalm 91:11 we read that God commands His angels to take care of us. In Hebrews 1:7 angels are called servants flames of fire and in Hebrews 1:14 angels are called ministering servants to the heirs of salvation. In today’s promise from Psalm 34:7, we read that the angel of the Lord actually camps around those who fear Him.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t think of angels that often. I know they are real and I know that they are involved in our daily lives. I choose to focus on Jesus, the author and perfecter of my salvation and on growing in my relationship with my heavenly Dad through the very active work of His Spirit. But today, I want to encourage you, that God has sent His angels to minister to us and to protect us because we are His heirs.

Just because we can’t see angels, doesn’t mean that they are not close by. And the reason why they are there and active on our behalf is because we belong to God and are His kids. The presence of angels surrounding each one is of us, is simply a token of our Father’s affection. What an amazing thought! The angel of the Lord surrounds you and me!

Give all your worries to Him

Give all your worries to him, because he cares about you. 

1 Peter 5:7

Maybe you don’t want to trouble God with your hurts. 

After all, he’s got famines and pestilence and wars;

he won’t care about my little struggles, you think. 

Why don’t you let him decide that? 

He cared enough about a wedding to provide the wine. 

He cared enough about Peter’s tax payment to give him a coin. 

He cared enough about the woman at the well to give her answers.

~ Max Lucado