This I know…

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“Then my enemies will be turned back in the day when I call. This I know, that God is for me.” Psalm 56:9

In any situation that you may be in,
these words remind that God wants you to win.
This I know, that God is for me…
lifts you above the things that are “stormy.”

P. A. Oltrogge

Jesus loves me, this I know,
for the Bible tells me so.
Yes, Jesus loves me…

“In the same way, the Spirit helps our weakness, for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.” Romans 8:26-27 NASB

“With all prayer and petition, pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.” Ephesians 6:18 NASB

On the Porch of the Lord

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A place of refreshment, the porch of the Lord…
Pull up a chair, take in spiritual air.
Jesus always has time, and His is the power–
Receive there His touch in this end-time hour.
Like Mary, take time to sit at His feet;
Come to His porch for relief from life’s heat.
Only one thing is needful and truly can please–
His Word and His presence, felt on each breeze.
He offers living water, quenching everyone’s thirst;
And that’s yours there daily, by seeking Him first.
There’s joy on His porch, with your sisters and brothers,
As you find your needs met while caring about others.
The healing and peace which only Christ can bring
Are found there at all times—an everlasting spring.
Taste there His love, so generously poured;
Your “cup will run over” on the porch of the Lord.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, ‘Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.’ And Jesus answered and said to her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things; But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.'” Luke 10:38-42 NKJV

“But one thing is needful…” verse 42, KJV

A Glorious Choice

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First Easter by Pauline Voorhees Eikenberry

First Easter by Pauline Voorhees Eikenberry

Jesus Christ of Nazareth had taken His destined place
On a cruel cross upon a hill–for the task He’d been born to face.
His sinless life had made Him the chosen Lamb of God–
Though now He sits at God’s right hand and bears a Shepherd’s rod.
Three days after Christ’s burial, and just at the brink of dawn,
Some, in love, had come to the tomb and had found that His body was gone.
But the pain of their grief concerning His death had then given way
To amazing angelic tidings on that glorious Resurrection day!
Jesus, the Man on the center cross, on the hill of crucifixion had been
The focus of God’s judgement upon all of mankind’s sin.
But now, with joy, the angels reminded that just as He had said,
Jesus, God’s Son, had risen in victory, up from the dead!
His Father’s gracious plan of redemption for all people had been met;
And all of their faults or sins, a holy God could now forget!
There’s just one requirement remaining; and it’s your choice–
To believe in your heart He’s Savior, and confess it with your voice.
Angels rejoice in heaven over one sinner who’ll repent,
And put their faith in Jesus Christ–the One Whom God has sent.

P. A. Oltrogge

“For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”
Romans 10:10 (New King James)

“In the same way, I tell you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
Luke 15:10 (New American Standard)

“For He says: ‘In an acceptable time I have heard you, and in the day of salvation I have helped you.’ Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.”
2 Corinthians 6:2 (New King James)

“Therefore, I will divide Him a portion with the great, and He shall divide the spoil with the strong, because He poured out His soul unto death, and He was numbered with the transgressors, and He bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.”
Isaiah 53:12 (New King James)

Resurrection references: Matthew 28; Mark 16; Luke 24; John 20

Christ and the Rich Young Ruler

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Christ and the Rich Young Ruler by Pauline Voorhees Eikenberry

Christ and the Rich Young Ruler by Pauline Voorhees Eikenberry

A rich young ruler, with eternal concerns, made a mental list–
Then sought out Christ to see if there was anything he’d missed.
In contemplating heaven, he hoped he’d done God’s will
By following His laws, from his youth, but wondered still.

He addressed Christ as a good teacher, but didn’t realize
That Christ wasn’t just a good teacher, but God before his very eyes.
He asked the Lord what he could do to aid him on eternity’s quest,
And Jesus confirmed that to keep the commandments is best.

The young man replied he’d done that from as early as he could recall–
Then Jesus told him of his need to follow Him and surrender all.
His wealth and possessions had become too strong of a hold
And kept him from seeing the purity of God’s desires–true gold.

With sadness, the ruler left because he couldn’t see the reward.
He hadn’t yet grasped the higher life offered through Christ, the Lord.
You see, making Christ your Lord doesn’t actually cost–in fact, it pays,
With dividends of God’s blessings throughout all your days.

The greatest blessing of all is getting to know God as you should–
A loving heavenly Father whose care and plans for you are good.
Then, committing your life and resources, in faith, as He leads
Will help you to reach exactly those He knows of who have needs.

God knows that when possessions become your highest treasure,
You’ll fail to find the things that He knows are of greater measure.
Christ looks for our faith and love for Him and where our loyalty lies;
Let’s not fail to see that investment in His Kingdom is certainly wise.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Now behold, one came and said to him, ‘Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?’ So He said to him, ‘Why do you call me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But, if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.’ He said to Him, ‘Which ones?’ Jesus said, ‘You shall not murder; you shall not commit adultery; you shall not steal; you shall not bear false witness; honor your father and your mother; and you shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ The young man said to him, ‘All these things I have kept from my youth. What do I still lack?’ Jesus said to him, ‘If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.’ But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.”

Matthew 19:16-22 (New King James)

No Accident

…just a little encouragement regarding the many trails we all take each day….

We can apply our faith against accidents (of any kind) on any given day. On this, I appreciate the words that a wise minister of faith had to say.

He told how his mother had worried for his safety, as he traveled on the road;
but he, himself, did not, for he’d given over to the Lord that worry load.

Then, he told her that God’s Word had become such a part of him,
that he trusted it completely—no fear could cause his faith in it to dim.

He relied on Psalm 91 as he traveled in ministry throughout the nation;
and, “No accident shall overtake thee,” he’d heard, was a Swedish translation.

I don’t personally know that language, but it seems like the truth to me.
To declare that, agrees with my Bible, which says, “There shall no evil befall thee!”

Sure, we’ve all heard of accidents sustained by others or ourselves to some degree, but it’s logical that our loving God would want us to live lives that are accident-free.

We also read (Proverbs 21:31) the declaration that “Safety is of the Lord.”
We can claim the covering of Jesus’ blood and use God’s Word, the trusted sword.

Of course, we should be listening for guidance from the Lord as we go throughout the week. It’s by the inward witness (peace to proceed or not) that He will often speak.

So whether we’re at home or are away—whether in the air, on land or sea or in a storm—let’s keep our faith out for the protection that God and His angels are so well able to perform.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation?” Hebrews 1:13-14 NKJV

“For He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways.”
Psalm 91:11 NKJV (And all of Psalm 91)

“The horse is prepared against the day of battle: but safety is of the Lord.” Proverbs 21:31 KJV (also “victory” in other Bible translations)

Because we’ve all heard of accidents, some very serious, it was easy to hesitate about posting this. But the thought was that perhaps we can all learn to be more trusting in this area. If, for whatever reason, an accident was in your past, don’t let fear of such cloud the future, but focus on God’s Word….

The Lord bless you and keep you…

The minister referenced in this poem was Kenneth E. Hagin,
Founder, Rhema Bible Church and Rhema Bible Training College, Tulsa, OK.

Angels on Assignment

The delicate beauty of this Queen Anne’s Lace
was designed by the Lord, who gives amazing grace…
Those who make Jesus their Lord, gain the gift of salvation;
and angels are assigned to minister to them in every nation.


When Joseph, betrothed to the virgin Mary, learned that she was pregnant, a situation troubling for him to understand,

an angel in a dream revealed to him that the child had been conceived by the Holy Spirit, for the Savior’s birth, which God had planned.

At Jesus’ birth, in Bethlehem, then, the skies were filled with rejoicing angels of great number,

appearing to shepherds, keeping watch over their flock, amid people’s nighttime slumber.

Again, in a dream, an angel spoke to Joseph, to flee to Egypt to escape Herod’s attack,

until he would tell him, at a later time, when and where it would be safe for them to come back.

As an adult, and after His baptism by John, Jesus experienced a time of temptation.

He fasted in the wilderness and withstood the devil’s taunts. Then angels ministered to Him after its duration.

Much later, at prayer in Gethsemane’s garden, Jesus began to feel very great distress

about fulfilling His Father’s will at the cross. So His Father sent an angel there to bless,

strengthen, and comfort Him…as the time for His trial and crucifixion had begun to loom.

Perhaps the angel reminded Jesus that He would be raised up—in victory over the tomb.

Scripture states that Jesus endured the cross because, ahead, He could see the joy—

He would be loved as our Redeemer…from the devil’s works, which He had come to destroy.

Upon His resurrection, heaven sent angels to greet early mourners at the tomb’s site,

to tell them that Jesus had been raised from the dead, dispelling any sorrow they’d had or fright.

Then, we read in Acts, of when Simon Peter, the Lord’s disciple, had been wrongfully jailed,

that God sent an angel to work a jailbreak, proving that Peter’s brethren’s prayers hadn’t failed.

And the apostle, Paul, was on a ship to Rome, sailing in a turbulent storm at sea—

when an angel appeared to him with a message, that no loss of life would there be.

Angels are noted throughout scripture. They minister to the heirs of salvation.

As believers, we are recipients of their aid, and they serve throughout every nation.

I thank the Lord for their service, for their presence as we walk life’s many trails.

I can think of times past when I sensed their protection. Through faith, prayer, and their help, God’s Kingdom never fails.

P. A. Oltrogge

References: Matthew 1:18-24; Matthew 2; Luke 2:1-20; Matthew 4:1-11; Mark 1:9-12; Luke 22:41-44; Hebrews 12:2; 1 John 3:8; Matthew 28:1-10; Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24:1-12; John 20:11-13; Acts 12; Acts 27:23-25; Hebrews 1:13-14

“I sought the Lord and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears…
The angel of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him, and delivers them.” Psalm 34:4, 7 NKJV

“Bless the Lord, ye his angels, that excel in strength, that do his commandments, hearkening unto the voice of his word.” Psalm 103:20 KJV

“Bless the Lord, O my soul! O Lord my God, You are very great: You are clothed with honor and majesty, Who cover yourself with light as with a garment, Who stretch out the heavens like a curtain. He lays the beams of His upper chambers in the waters, Who makes the clouds His chariot, Who walks on the wings of the wind, Who makes His angels spirits, His ministers a flame of fire.” Psalm 104:1-4 NKJV

“Then the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David, a Savior, who is Christ, the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.’” Luke 2:10-12 NKJV

“Take heed that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that in heaven their angels always see the face of My Father who is in heaven. For the Son of Man has come to save that which was lost.” Matthew 18:10-11 NKJV

“…looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:2 NKJV

”He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.” 1 John 3:8 NKJV

“Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation?” Hebrews 1:13-14 NKJV

“For He shall give His angels charge over you , to keep you in all your ways.” Psalm 91:11 NKJV

“Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord from the heavens; Praise Him in the heights! Praise Him, all His angels; Praise Him, all His hosts! Praise Him, sun and moon; Praise Him, all you stars of light!” Psalm 148:1-3 NKJV

Photos/Unsplash

Notes on the Benefits of Praying in Tongues

The following are simple notes taken recently from a message on praying in tongues:

Praying in tongues helps you to pray longer…to pray much…without ceasing….to pray without words…. (Remember, Jesus wanted His disciples to pray with Him one hour…)

tongues are a strong avenue for prayer, communicating with God

helps you in overcoming the flesh….

praying in tongues causes you to pray beyond your own thinking….the Holy Spirit does perfect praying….

In John 7, Jesus’ brothers did not believe in Him… They basically were saying “Go to Judea and prove Yourself there…” but Jesus only was guided by His Father’s direction and timing…

God’s plans for our lives are timing dependent… We must seek the Lord on it… Praying in tongues helps us synchronize with God’s timing….

In Acts 16:6-10, the Holy Spirit forbade or blocked certain routes… Some translations say “the Spirit of Jesus”… That night Paul had a vision…directing him to go to Macedonia… The vision gave him the map or plan…

Holy Ghost prayer will get you to where you’ll know for sure….(God’s direction in any matter of life)

Praying in tongues makes us sensitive to God’s plan(s)….

You dictate when the utterance comes… It will give us boldness in sharing the Lord…

In Acts 2:14, Peter, on the day of Pentecost, shared with the people regarding the filling of the Holy Spirit… “This is that, which was spoken by the prophet Joel.” (Acts 2:17-21) The people had said, “We hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.” A wonderful work of God is praying in tongues… (3,000 came to know the Lord, Acts 2)

In Acts 3, the man at the Beautiful Gate was healed….(5,000 came to the Lord). Peter and John were taken into custody, then were released and came to their own companions and prayed… Acts 4:29-31: “‘Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word, by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus.’ And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.”

We are to be overflowing with the Holy Ghost. The end time is a prophesying generation…

Matthew 26:69-75 relates Peter’s denial about knowing Jesus. But he went on to win souls after he was filled with the Holy Spirit…

Praying in tongues is getting drunk in the new wine (the Holy Ghost)…

Drink the Spirit of God… Use “draws” of Him…from the well, through speaking/praying in tongues… You’ll start feeling His presence….

In Acts 19:1-7, Paul at Ephesus found some disciples and asked them “‘Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?’ So they said to him, ‘We have not so much as heard whether there is a Holy Spirit.”… And when Paul had laid hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke with tongues and prophesied. Now the men were about twelve in all.”

Preachers with most notable miracles (of healing) are certainly always baptized in the Holy Ghost.

Praying in tongues…from 1 Corin 14:15-17… spirit and understanding… you’re blessing God… “What is the conclusion then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will also pray with the understanding. I will sing with the spirit, and I will also sing with the understanding.”

Colossians 3:16 “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.”

Commune with the Lord daily…speaking in other tongues… Purpose in your heart to start praying in tongues…..

Then (after the message) came a Word from the Lord on how He has ordained, by such, to work through His people…

The notes above are from a message given at http://www.covenantfamily.cc pastored by Keith Eggert. The message above was given by Dan Walter, who has been much involved in the healing ministry. Further messages on the ministry of the Holy Spirit or other topics are available in the website archives.

For reading material, you could visit http://www.rhema.org and browse their bookstore (recommend “Why Tongues” booklet) or other teaching books and articles.

Led by the Light of the Lord

We read of Jesus: “And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.” Mark 1:35 KJV

When the sun is up and shining, there’s still a greater light…
that’s with us through the daytime and deep into the night.
God’s Word lights every pathway when, on it, we’ve meditated;
its everlasting words are the Truth that will never be outdated.

Before the day would dawn, Jesus prayed and sought to hear
direction from His Father–very early, drawing near.
As believers, we need prayer, the Holy Spirit, and the Word–
We walk in greatest confidence once the voice of God is heard.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Now it came to pass in those days that He went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.” Luke 6:12

“Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.”
Psalm 119:105 KJV

“Your testimonies are wonderful;
Therefore my soul keeps them.
The entrance of Your words gives light;
It gives understanding to the simple.” Psalm 119:129-130

“I cry out with my whole heart; Hear me, O Lord!
I will keep Your statutes. I cry out to You;
Save me, and I will keep Your testimonies.
I rise before the dawning of the morning,
And cry for help; I hope in Your word.
My eyes are awake through the nightwatches,
That I may meditate on Your word.
Hear my voice according to Your lovingkindness;
O Lord, revive me according to Your justice.
They draw near who follow after wickedness;
They are far from Your law.
You are near, O Lord, And all Your commandments are truth.
Concerning Your testimonies, I have known of old that You have founded them forever.” Psalm 119:145-152

“For with You is the fountain of life; In Your light we see light.” Psalm 36:9

“And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper (Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor—Counselor, Strengthener, Standby), to be with you forever— the Spirit of Truth, whom the world cannot receive [and take to its heart] because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He (the Holy Spirit) remains with you continually and will be in you.” words of Jesus in John 14:16-17 AMP

“I have told you these things while I am still with you. But the Helper (Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor—Counselor, Strengthener, Standby), the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name [in My place, to represent Me and act on My behalf], He will teach you all things. And He will help you remember everything that I have told you. Peace I leave with you; My [perfect] peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be afraid. [Let My perfect peace calm you in every circumstance and give you courage and strength for every challenge.]” John 14:25-27 AMP

“The grass withers, the flower fades,
But the word of our God stands forever.” Isaiah 40:8

Scriptures NKJV or as noted.

The Creator of the Ends of the Earth

Have you not known?
Have you not heard?
The everlasting God, the Lord,
The Creator of the ends of the earth,
Neither faints nor is weary.
His understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the weak,
And to those who have no might He increases strength.

Isaiah 40:28-29 NKJV

As the deer pants for the water brooks,
So pants my soul for You, O God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God….

Psalm 42:1-2 NKJV

Photos/Unsplash: Top, Gleason Falls, Hillsborough, NH, U.S., by Forest Simon
Bottom, Rocky Mountain State Park, Estes Park, U.S., by Steve Adams

Paul’s Rough Sea Voyage and Shipwreck to an Island

Photo by Porch of the Lord

I’ve shared this Biblical poetic account previously, but would like to add, if you’ve not yet come across it, recommendation of the book, by Robert Cornuke, The Lost Shipwreck of Paul. In it, the author takes you on his captivating journey to Malta to research the actual location of Paul’s shipwreck and any possible remains of the ancient Roman anchors mentioned in the Biblical account. The book is available at Amazon.com, where you can also find many positive reviews of it.

(Having appealed to Caesar, Paul is sent to Rome…
a poetic narrative of Acts 27-28)

When it was decided to go to Italy, Paul and some other prisoners entered a ship at Adramyttium and were put to sea, to sail along Asia’s coasts.

Julius, a centurion of the Augustan Regiment, treated Paul kindly, letting him receive care at Sidon from people who were Paul’s friends and hosts.

From Sidon, they sailed under the shelter of Cyprus due to the strong, contrary gales.

Then, over seas off of Cilicia and Pamphylia, they came to Myra, Lycia, where they were put aboard another ship bound for Italy in their forthcoming sails.

They sailed slowly many days, arriving with difficulty off Cnidus—the wind didn’t permit them to proceed.

So they sailed under the shelter of Crete off Salmone, passing it also with difficulty, coming to Fair Havens, a stop of need.

They’d lost a lot of time, and the weather was becoming dangerous as it was so late in the fall.

So Paul spoke to the ship’s officers about it—that he perceived trouble ahead, with great damage to the cargo and ship and even to the lives of them all.

But the centurion was more persuaded by the pilot and captain of the ship than by anything that Paul had said.

And because the harbor wasn’t suitable for wintering, the majority reached the decision to put out to sea, going ahead.

If, somehow, they could reach Phoenix, a harbor of Crete, facing southwest and northwest, they could spend winter there, they thought.

So when a moderate south wind came up, they supposed they’d attained their purpose, weighed anchor, and began sailing along Crete, on the route they sought.

But before very long, a violent wind, called Euraquilo, rushed down to sea from the land.

And when the ship was caught in it, and couldn’t face the wind, they gave way to it and were driven along—totally unplanned.

Running under the shelter of a small island called Clauda, they were scarcely able to get the ship’s lifeboat under control.

After they’d hoisted it up, they used supporting cables in undergirding the ship and let down the sea anchor. Avoiding being run aground on the shallows of Syrtis was the goal.

The next day, as they were being violently storm-tossed, they began to throw the cargo overboard.

On the third day, they threw the tackle over, another thing the ship was carrying but which they could no longer afford.

Sun nor stars appeared for many days, and of the thought of being saved, they’d gradually lost hope.

After having gone without food for a long time, Paul reminded them that if they’d listened to him, with this storm and loss they wouldn’t have had to cope.

Yet he urged them to not lose courage, saying there would be no loss of life among them, but only of the ship.

He shared that this he knew by way of the appearance of an angel of God, who had come and stood before him on the trip.

The angel told Paul that he would yet stand before Caesar and that God had granted him the lives of all those sailing along.

So Paul, again, strongly encouraged them, saying that he believed God and that God’s predictions were never wrong.

He added, however, that on a certain island, they would run aground.

And after the fourteenth night in the Adriatic Sea, about midnight, some of the sailors began to sense that land ahead might soon be found.

They took soundings as they approached; and not wanting to run aground on the rocks, they cast four anchors from the stern, wishing for dawn’s light.

Then the sailors tried to abandon the ship, lowering the lifeboat as though they were going to put out anchors from the front, but they couldn’t quite…

for Paul said to the centurion and his soldiers, “Unless these men remain in the ship, you yourselves cannot be saved.”

So the soldiers cut away the ropes of the lifeboat and let it fall away before any escape could be braved.

Until the day was about to break, Paul encouraged them that not a hair of their heads would perish—that they should not be anxious, going without eating—but to take some food.

He himself took bread and gave thanks to God in their presence and began to eat. So all the others on board took food as well, encouraged and their spirits renewed.

Two hundred seventy-six persons were aboard; and when all had eaten enough, they lightened the ship by casting overboard their wheat.

When day broke, they couldn’t recognize the land but observed a certain bay with a beach. They resolved to drive the ship onto it, if they could accomplish the feat.

So, casting off the anchors, they left them in the sea, loosened the ropes of the rudders, and hoisted the foresail to the wind—then headed for the beach.

But they struck a reef where two seas met and ran the vessel aground. The prow stuck fast and remained immovable. The stern began to break up by many a wave’s forceful reach.

The soldiers had planned to kill the prisoners so that none would swim away and escape; however, the centurion wanted to bring Paul safely through.

So, he kept them from those intentions and commanded that those who could swim should jump overboard first—the others to follow on planks from the ship or anything with which they could make do.

Thus it happened that all were brought safely to the land—they found that Malta was this particular island’s name.

There, the natives showed extraordinary kindness… Due to rain that had set in and the cold, they received them all and kindled for them a fire’s warming flames.

When Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks and laid them on the fire, a viper came out, due to the heat, and fastened on his hand.

Seeing this, the natives expressed the thought that, likely, Paul was a murderer, lucky to escape the sea, but that death by snakebite was somehow justice served—perhaps divinely planned.

But Paul shook the creature off, back into the fire—the incident, for him, was not ill-fated.

Then the natives, who had expected him to swell up and die, suddenly changed their minds and said that with a “god” he could be equated.

In that region, there was a leading citizen, Publius, by name, at whose estate they were welcomed for three days.

The father of this man lay sick with a fever and dysentery. So Paul went in to him, laid his hands on him, and he was healed. Paul was continuing to follow his Lord Jesus’ compassionate healing ways.

When this was done, other natives on the island who had illnesses also received from Paul’s healing ministry during his stay.

The islanders honored Paul in many ways, giving him and the others much in provision before the time when they would again sail away.

P. A. Oltrogge

“For last night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve stood beside me, and he said, ‘Don’t be afraid, Paul, for you will surely stand trial before Caesar! What’s more, God in his goodness, has granted safety to everyone sailing with you.’ So take courage! For I believe God. It will be just as he said.” Acts 27:23-25 NLT

An archived post, “Lost at Sea,” from 2015, could be a blessing to you if you’ve not heard of or would like to review Michelle Hamilton’s modern-day true account of accidentally drifting out in a small craft into the vastness of the ocean and how she was rescued by the Lord.

A Baby in a Basket Ark

The following is reprinted in light of this year’s March for Life taking place in Washington D.C. today…. To join others in prayer, refer to http://www.ifapray.org

An account from ancient Egypt…

The Bible tells of a Pharaoh who sought to kill every newborn Hebrew boy.
One woman, Jochebed, hid her baby, to weaken the plot to destroy
his valuable life, which God had ordained, for a great work He had planned–
the deliverance of the Hebrew people from out of Pharaoh’s hand.

When she no longer could hide the baby after three months had passed by,
she put him in a basket by the bank of the river, leaving him under the sky.
At that place, Pharaoh’s daughter came to bathe, never thinking she’d find
an unusual woven basket there, with treasure of the greatest kind.

Jochebed’s daughter, Miriam, watched to see how her baby brother would fare–
she waited, staying at a distance, after they’d placed the little child there.
Not only that, she was ready to speak up when the baby, then, was found;
her courage to “find” her mother as a nurse turned the whole situation around.

Jochebed’s faith, and her daughter’s caring heart, helped save her baby that day,
when Pharaoh’s daughter beheld the child, and God turned her heart his way.
The compassion she felt caused her to want the child, to raise him as her own,
with no realization it was divine intervention of God reigning upon His throne.

For that particular child was destined to grow up to become Moses, the liberator–
hidden, at first, among reeds–but then welcomed into Pharaoh’s palace later.
Yet God put within Moses a knowing that he was no Egyptian royal;
instead, to his own Hebrew people and their God, his heart was strongly loyal.

In present times, God is pleased to find other “Jochebeds” and their assistants,
who work to save the very young and are today’s abortion trend “resistance.”
Their prayers are protective baskets for children fashioned by God’s hand–
Like Miriam, they seek to bond mother and child–or place them in the home
He has planned.

And who of us knows the destiny of any child not fully born or even grown?
It’s only by the God of the universe, that such things are surely known.
Moses was deemed a special child upon the very day of his birth;
yet to God all children are destined and special, and He counts them of
incalculable worth.

P. A. Oltrogge

“Now a man from the house of Levi went and married a daughter of Levi (Jochebed). And the woman conceived and bore a son; and when she saw that he was beautiful, she hid him for three months. But when she could hide him no longer, she got him a wicker basket and covered it over with tar and pitch. Then she put the child into it, and set it among the reeds by the bank of the Nile. And his sister (Miriam) stood at a distance to find out what would happen to him. Then the daughter of Pharaoh came down to bathe at the Nile, with her maidens walking alongside the Nile; and she saw the basket among the reeds and sent her maid, and she brought it to her. When she opened it, she saw the child and behold, the boy was crying. And she had pity on him and said, ‘This is one of the Hebrews’ children.’ Then his sister said to Pharaoh’s daughter, ‘Shall I go and call a nurse for you?’ And Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, ‘Go ahead.’ So the girl went and called the child’s mother. Then Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, ‘Take this child away and nurse him for me and I shall give you your wages.’ So the woman took the child and nursed him. And the child grew, and she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter, and he became her son. And she named him Moses, and said, ‘Because I drew him out of the water.’” Exodus 2:1-10

Lessons from Snowstorms

I’m thinking of life in the winter months in America’s midwest
when sometimes heavy snowfalls there have put us to the test…

Not only have we had to work hard to dig our driveways out;
but it can be quite hazardous, driving out onto an icy, snowy route.

There’ve been the occasional times when we have even slid off the road;
but, then, people would stop to help so that we wouldn’t need to be towed.

These good Samaritans would push us as the wheels of the car were spinning…
because we had tried to back out on our own, with little success at winning.

It often took some time as the car rocked back and forth or swayed…
but the volunteers were confident that they could push us up the grade.

The piles of heavy snow and hidden ice, at last, had to give way…
to the determined push of the strong good guys who definitely saved the day!

When things in this world are troubling and certainly don’t seem right,
remember this picture–of determined teamwork and its breakthrough might.

With faith in God, we can even have His joy and an inner knowing….
We don’t have to stay in a “ditch,” though it’s been so heavily “snowing”!

P. A. Oltrogge

Postscript:

We might think the problems we’re facing are more like blizzard conditions;
but storms subside or end, so let’s persevere, giving God our fervent petitions.

The remembrance above is from country roads years ago, which didnt have the busy traffic of today; but the image in my mind spoke of Christian teamwork in action and of earnest continued prayer for life in today’s tough situations….so that we may not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality.

“Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion.

“Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. Therefore

“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
If he is thirsty, give him a drink;
For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.”

“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” Romans 12: 9-21 NKJV and all of Romans 12

“And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” Galatians 6:9 KJV

“I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” Psalm 27:13 NKJV

“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 NKJV

Encouragement day or night at http://www.govictory.com and Morning Prayer at 9:30 a.m. ET

Come, as a Little Child

“And Jesus called a little child unto Him, and set him in the midst of them, and said, ‘Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me.’” Matthew 18:2-5 (KJV)

A heart that is very tender, like that of a little child,
is needed to perceive God’s chosen Lamb, who was perfect and undefiled.
Sweetly, Jesus came, long ago, as a baby on the hay;
and, tenderly, He calls to each person yet today,
to recognize God’s pathway to the Way, the Truth, and the Life,
for eternity and, also, in this present world of strife.
Jesus laid down His life on a cross, and rose again, so that we can be free
to draw from His strength in our own lives, helping others to also see
that they can be restored–to a heavenly Father who is gracious
to lead them in this life and to a heaven, fair and spacious.
There’s room there for any person, who, like a little child, took
the gift freely offered by Jesus Christ, as recorded in God’s Holy Book.
Remember, please, its warning–not to be too “wise,”
but to take of the offer that is proper in His Father’s eyes.
Harden not your heart, for you’re meant to be relieved,
of search for Truth by any other, than by Christ, in whom we’ve believed.

P. A. Oltrogge

“That is why the Holy Spirit says, ‘Today when you hear his voice, don’t harden your hearts as Israel did when they rebelled, when they tested me in the wilderness. There your ancestors tested and tried my patience, even though they saw my miracles for forty years.'” Hebrews 3:7-9 NLT

“So God set another time for entering his rest, and that time is today. God announced this through David much later in the words already quoted: ‘Today when you hear his voice, don’t harden your hearts.'” Hebrews 4:7 NLT

“Come to Me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” spoken by Jesus in Matthew 11:28 NASB

“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” John 14:5-7 KJV

“Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” John 17:17 KJV

“And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:13 NKJV

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the Lord and depart from evil. It will be health to your flesh, and strength to your bones.” Proverbs 3:5-8 NKJV

“Then people brought little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked them. Jesus said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.’ When he had placed his hands on them, he went on from there.” Matthew 19:13-14 NIV

“Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves Him who begot also loves him who is begotten of Him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world–our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” 1 John 5:1-5 NKJV

“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23 NKJV

The Name of the Lord Jesus

The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous runs into it and is safe.” Proverbs 18:10 NASB

Whenever there’s a “darkest hour,”

the name of Jesus is our strong tower.

When things are rough and are looking bleak,

it’s then that faith must confidently speak.

All things are possible with our God…

He makes flowers to rise through the stubborn sod.

God hasn’t given us a spirit of fear–

the message from Him is to be of good cheer!

We often want to be able to see the victory first,

but faith sees a good outcome when things seem at their worst.

Look past any image that speaks of defeat.

See (and say) it as God sees it–your victory’s complete!

P. A. Oltrogge

“Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place.” 2 Corinthians 2:14

“But Jesus looked at them and said to them, ‘With men this is impossible, but with God, all things are possible.’” Matthew 19:26 

“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” …spoken by Jesus in John 16:33

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7

“For we walk by faith, not by sight.” 2 Corinthians 5:7

“…looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith….” …from Hebrews 12:1-3

“So Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.'” …from Mark 11:20-26

“Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” Acts 2:36

“Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” Romans 5:1-5

“Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves Him who begot also loves him who is begotten of Him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world–our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” 1 John 5:1-5

“Therefore also God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those who are in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2:9-11 (NASB)

Scriptures NKJV or as noted