I had to share this story. It’s beautiful.

: Many years ago, in a village on the border between Germany and Denmark, lived a man named Karl Schmidt, together with his wife, Mona, and his grandmother, Bertha.

One winter’s night, a cry of warning rang through the quiet village. “The enemy is coming! Flee! Flee for your lives!” People burst out of their cottage doors to see refugees pouring into the village. These poor people had fled from the village a distance away. “They’re burning and killing. If you don’t flee, you’ll also be destroyed!”

Karl looked at the frightened children and women, and at the silent men as they hurried past. He knew it was no use to flee. It was so cold that he was sure they would freeze to death before the night was over. Karl turned to his family.

“We will stay here and see what happens to us.”

Bertha looked at her grandson, “Karl, we won’t die. God will be our protection.” Frau Schmidt reached for her well-worn Bible and turned to the Psalms. Then she read: “The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him, and He delivers them…The righteous cry, and the Lord hears and delivers them out of all their troubles…Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers them out of them all.”

Karl was amazed at his grandmother’s faith. How could she believe these ancient words when death was staring her in the face? Mona sobbed silently, but the old grandmother grew more and more confident with every passing hour. Outside, a storm whistled and raged. Then, the wind stilled somewhat. At midnight, they heard tramping and shouting in the distance. Bertha prayed softly, “Oh, Lord, build a wall around us!”

Suddenly horrible shrieks pierced the night, and there was the sound of crackling flames. Destruction surrounded them, but in the cottage all was still. Eventually, the noise drifted away. Karl did not allow his wife and mother to move. Quietly, they waited in their cold room, till at last, it was morning. He couldn’t understand why the enemy had not touched them. Karl put one eye to the slit. Then he threw the windows wide open.

“Praise God, Grandmother! Here indeed is your wall!” Outside all they could see was snow. During the storm, the snow had been driven completely over the tiny cottage, hiding it from the eyes of the army.

Frau Schmidt looked at the glistening wall and declared:

“Faithful is He who has promised: He also has done it!”

—Footprints of Providence, J. McR

God bless, all my precious avids.

The Beautiful Gate; Acts 3.

He sat in the sun as it burnt down on his face. It was a hot day and all these two men could do was think of their next town. Perhaps they were thirsty? Tired maybe? Whatever their condition it wasn’t enough to keep them from feeling a man tug on their robes. The men looked down and saw a lame man. The men looked at each other.

“Sir? Please, sir, if you have just a little bit of money to spare for a poor lame man?” One of the men, Peter, smiled and shook his head. This man didn’t need money. Peter knew it. John knew it. The only one who didn’t was the beggar.

“I don’t any money for you, but I’ll tell you what I can give you. Get up, pick up your bed and walk.” The man looked at Peter and thought, ‘What have I got to lose? I’m sitting here lame’ he tried to get up and instantly he did something he hadn’t done since birth–he walked! He got up and looked at Peter and John as tears poured down his face. He thanked Peter as he wept, but Peter said to him, “It isn’t me that healed you, but Christ the Lord Who has worked wonders for His glory. I am just the one He used.”

The man then ran away leaping and praising God!

A short, but beautiful story of the power of God. If you sit in the presence of God and wait in prayer, He can use you and others around you to work His glorious wonders!

God bless and keep all of you, my precious avids. 🧡💖 I wish each and everyone of you a blessed and very merry Christmas!

Eutychus (Acts 20:7-10)

Today will be a very short, but poignant story. It has a very valid lesson and I will share this with you.

This story takes place on a Sabboth (Saturday) and involves the disciples and the apostle Paul. As the story goes, these men were in the process of breaking bread with each other and Paul was ministering with them right up into midnight. All the lights were burning on the third floor where they were all gathered and there was a young man who was sitting in the window by the name of Eutychus. He had fallen fast asleep while Paul was speaking and he struggled to stay awake. Eventually the sleep over-powered him, he fell out the window and died. Everyone was horrified and watched in horror as Paul ran down to see Eutychus. When Paul got to Eutychus, he fell on him, wrapping him in a warm embrace and said, “Don’t worry. He’s still alive!” Paul moved away so that Eutychus could get up and Paul and Eutychus went up back to the others. Paul continued his fellowship with them and left in the morning. They went down to where Eutychus was and found him alright and were completely over-joyed!

Right now, I am immediately reminded of how it is so easy to get accustomed to God’s Gospel that you “fall asleep” as it were and this can lead to our downfall (pardon the pun). Staying vigilant and keeping our eyes wide open is the only way to keep our footing in this crazy world. We have firm ground to stand on. We have a God Who catches us when we fall. He revives us when we fall and is there to minister to us.

Remember that. There is steady ground in Christ.

God bless all of you, my precious avids! 🙂

Lot; Genesis 18&19

I don’t know if you ever heard of the story of Lot? It’s a cautionary tale that is often referred to warn of the punishment of sin. If we take a look into Lot’s history we find that Lot was travelling in Canaan with his uncle Abram (later referred to as the famous Abraham) and there was a dispute between the servants of Lot and those of Abram. This caused them to split up. Lot chose to stay in the rich fertile land near the city of Sodom and Gomorrah and Abram moved to the barren lands on the opposite side. God blessed Abram abundantly and Lot prospered where he was, but Lot had no idea what the future held for him. God was use him as a witness as one of the most violent miracles recorded.

So what happened to Lot? The Bible gives us quite an apt description. It says, “And righteous Lot vexed his soul daily.” This phrase in the context is referring to the sin that was happening in the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. God saw what was going in those two cities and He saw Lot was righteous. God proceeded to send two “messengers of God”, as the Bible says, to Lot. Lot made the messengers comfortable, gave them something to drink, something to eat and then sat down to talk with them. This would not be as simple as it seemed, because the men in the city wanted Lot to give them these men that God had sent and Lot refused. He pleaded with them and even tried to negotiate with them, but they would not listen. These messengers of God pulled Lot back into the house, shut the door and then proceeded to blind the men of the city. These men had told Lot who they were and Who had sent them and Lot listened intently, knowing God was about to speak. “Lot,” they began, “The Lord God has cursed these cities and He will destroy them with fire and everyone in them, except for you, Lot.” Lot was terrified, but what Lot didn’t know was that his uncle Abram had already pleaded for God to spare the righteous men in that city. You can find this conversation in Genesis 18v23-32. God saw that Lot was scared and the messengers said to him, “Do not be afraid. Pack up your house, your wife, your two daughters and leave. God is going send fire from heaven and completely burn up these cities because of their wickedness. Leave and do not even look behind you. JUST RUN!” Lot was dumbstruck–God was going to destroy two cities. His wife, two daughters and himself would be the only survivors of so many people. The two messengers saw that Lot was taking too long and they grabbed his hand, his wife’s hand and his two daughter’s hands and rushed them out of the city before they were destroyed with it. Now God told Lot to escape to the mountains so that he wouldn’t be destroyed, but Lot was scared that something would happen to his family if they went into the mountains. Now it just happened that there was a small city nearby called Zoar and Lot said, “Can I go to the city of Zoar and live there since it will be safer?” God allowed him to move there and they fled. While the Lord rained down fire and brimstone from heaven, Job’s wife looked behind her and, right there and then, was turned into a pillar of salt. Job fled into Zoar, but he became scared and instead fled into the mountains of Zoar with his two daughters.

It says later on in chapter 19 God remembered that He had told Abram what was happening and God knew that he would be worried about Lot, so God told Abram that Lot and his family was safe and that Abram needn’t worry anymore.

This story is so amazing. It speaks of how as God’s children we are delivered from His wrath. Because of the cross we are saved by His amazing, boundless and unconditional love.

If you are in a bad place either physically or emotionally call out to God wherever you are and He will save you. God loves you already where you are and He’s waiting for you to call out to Him. If you don’t know what to say, don’t worry. Simply ask Him to save you and He will. There are no long fancy prayers that you need to pray, just ask Him.

God bless all of you, my precious avids😇💖 Have a lovely afternoon.

The Book of Job

The Book of Job.

I decided for thanksgiving I’d talk about someone who had to learn what being thankful was all about. He had a rough time, but still he had hope in God. You already know this man of faith was–Job. But our story doesn’t start with Job. Instead it starts in Heaven. Now there was a certain day when all of Heaven’s angels stood before God and Lucifer also came in God’s presence. This is where things get interesting for Job. God asks Lucifer, “Where have you been and what have you been doing?” Lucifer answers him, “I have been all over the world. Walking here. Walking there.”

And God said, “Have you thought of my servant Job? He is a righteous and honourable man. All He does is to my glory.”

“That is true,” Lucifer replies, “but that is because You have kept him from poverty and loss. Take everything he owns away from him and he will turn on You and curse You right to your face.” God knew Job’s faith and he replied, “Do what you want, but don’t hurt him.” So Lucifer did.

Enter Job. Job was offering sacrifices for his children because he knew they were not right before God and he was no doubt concerned and saddened. While he was offering his sacrifices a lone servant came running to him in a panic and, crying, said, “Master! Master! The oxen were plowing, the donkeys next to them and Sabeans (an ancient tribe of South Arabians) came and stole them. They killed all your servants and I escaped to come and tell you!” While Job was hearing this, another of his servants came rushing towards him trembling. “Master! Master!” He cried, “Fire from Heaven burnt up your sheep and all your servants. I’m the only one who escaped!” Job had just barely recovered himself when another servant came running. “Master! Master! The Chaldeans (for all intents and purposes, Babylonians) and stole the camels as well as killing the servants. While the men were trying to comfort each other another man came running as fast as he could. This man looked worse than the others. Job’s heart couldn’t handle it, but he remained calm. If God had a plan, Job would trust Him to the very end even if Job had to die. The servant was catching his breath, when he looked up. His face was covered in tears as he said, “Master, your sons and daughters were having a feast in their brother’s house and a powerful wind came and hit the house from all four sides and it fell down on them, crushing them!”

Job left them and was so devastated that he tore his clothes and his cloak. He shaved his beard and fell to his knees worshipping God. He said to God, “Naked I was born and naked I will die. You have given and You have taken. Blessed is your holy Name!” Despite all his pain, not once did Job turn on God.

Again there was a day when the angels all stood before God and Lucifer came too. God asked him, “And have you seen that despite all you have done, Job still is faithful to me.” But Lucifer was not ready to give up and instead, again, challenged God, “You are right. He lost everything, but if you hurt him, he WILL turn on you–any man would.”

“Alright,” God replied, “go ahead, but don’t kill him.” So Lucifer went and struck Job with boils all over his body–even down to the soles of his feet. While Job sat in his sorrow and pain, scraping the boils with a piece of pot, his wife came along and with disdain said to him.

“What on earth is wrong with you?! God has taken everything–our sons, daughters, wealth even your own health! Yet you still say God is good! Curse God and just die!” Job looked up at his wife and said to her, “What is wrong with YOU? You are acting like a foolish woman! Do you think that all God does is bless? Do you claim to know his heart? Are we exempt from the world’s evil?” Even in his loss and discomfort, he never once betrayed God.

Word of Job’s suffering came across to his three friends, Eliphaz, Bildad and Zophar. While they were on making their journey, they saw Job from far away. All three of them wept for Job’s suffering and tore their clothes and cloaks joining him in his mourning. 7 days and nights they sat quietly and mourned with him.

After Job chapter 3 until chapter 38 it alternates between Job cursing his existence and his friends asking him what he could’ve done to bring this on himself. After chapter 37, we see God speaks to Job out of a whirlwind and asks him all kinds of questions. Questions that God knows Job can’t answer, but that is God’s point. He is telling Job that He is the Creator of all things. All the questions He asked Job were all to bring Job to that conclusion.

You see from the very beginning God knew what was going to happen. From the day that Job was born God knew Lucifer was going to do what he did and that Job would remain faithful even at his weakest. In the very last chapter Job comes to this same realization. He says to God that he knows God is capable of all things and that He is a good God.

You’re probably wondering why I chose Job on Thanksgiving, well it’s quite simple. I chose Job because at the very end Job realizes that everything God gave him was a blessing and he was thankful for what God had given him. In the last chapter God doubles Job’s wealth and restores all his children. Job even names his daughter in the last chapter and includes them in his inheritance.

Yesterday we took a day to look at our blessings and be thankful for what was given to us. If anyone was thankful for what he had, it was Job.

Please do go and read for yourselves. Job is my favourite character in the Bible. His story always gives me strength.

God bless you all today, my precious avids.

“On His Blindness” by John Milton (1608-1674)

When I consider how my light is spent
Ere half my days in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodg’d with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest he returning chide,
“Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?”
I fondly ask. But Patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies: “God doth not need
Either man’s work or his own gifts: who best
Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best. His state
Is kingly; thousands at his bidding speed
And post o’er land and ocean without rest:
They also serve who only stand and wait.”

Paradise Lost; John Milton

Excerpt pages 62 – 63; Book III.

“…But yet all is not done; Man disobeying,

Disloyal, breaks his fealty, and sins

Against the high supremacy of Heaven,

Affecting God-head, and, so losing all,

To expiate his treason hath nought left,

But to destruction sacred and devote,

He, with whole posterity, must die,

Did he or justice must; unless for him

Some other able, and as willing, pay

The rigid satisfaction, death for death.

Say, heavenly Powers, where shall we find such love?

Which of you will be mortal, to redeem

Man’s mortal crime, and just to unjust to save?

Dwells in all Heaven charity so dear?”

He ask’d, but all the Heavenly: on Man’s behalf

Patron or intercessour none appear’d,

Much less that durst upon his own head draw

The deadly forfeiture, and ransom set.

And now without redemption all mankind

Must have been lost, adjudg’d to Death and Hell

By doom severe, had not the Son of God,

In whom the fulness dwells of love divine,

His dearest mediation thus renew’d.

“Father, thy word is past, Man shall find grace;

And shall grace not find means, that find her way,

The speediest of thy winged messengers,

To visit all thy creatures, and to all

Comes unprevented, unimplor’d, unsought?

Happy for man, so coming; he her aid

Can never seek, once dead in sins, and lost;

Atonement for himself, or offering meet,

Indebted and undone, hath none to bring;

Behold me then: me for him, life for life

I offer: on me let thine anger fall;

Account me Man; I for his sake will leave

Thy bosom, and this glory next to thee

Freely put off, and for himlastly die

Well, pleased; on me let Death wreak all his rage.

Under his gloomy power I shall not long

Lie vanquished. Thou hast given me to possess

Life in myself for ever; by thee I live;

Though now to Death I yield, and am his due,

All that of me can die, yet that debt paid,

Thou wilt not leave me in the loathsome grave

His prey, nor suffer my unspotted soul

For ever with corruption there to dwell

But I shall rise victorious and subdue

My vanquisher, spoiled of his vaunted spoil

Death his death’s wound shall then receive and stoop

Inglorious, of his mortal sting disarmed;

I thought the ample air in triumph high

Shall lead Hell captive maugre Hell, and show

The powers of darkness bound. Thou, at the sight

Pleased, out of Heaven shalt look down and smile,

While, by thee raised, I ruin all my foes;

Death last, and with his carcass glut the grave;

Then, with the multitude of my redeemed,

Shall enter Heaven, long absent, and return,

Father, to see thy face, wherein no cloud

Of anger shall remain, but peace assured

And reconcilement: wrath be no more

Thenceforth, but in thy presence joy entire.

The above is Christ’s plan of salvation and the sacrifice He made for YOU AND ME. He loves us so much that from the very beginning He knew He would have to leave his home, his Father and die for OUR sin.

God bless you all, my darling avidReaders.