Nehemiah 8:3 He read it aloud from daybreak till noon as he faced the square before the Water Gate in the presence of the men, women and others who could understand. And all the people listened attentively to the Book of the Law. (NIV)

"The books you read may have much to do with your choosing of the road."—Katherine Logan

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A FEW THINGS TO THINK ABOUT ON THIS INDEPENDENCE DAY:

Psalm 33:12  “Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD.” (NIV)

“A thoughtful mind... sees not the flag only, but the nation itself... the principles, the truths, the history.”  Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887)

“Any nation that thinks more of its ease and comfort than its freedom will soon lose its freedom; and the ironical thing about it is that it will lose its ease and comfort too.” William Somerset Maugham (1874-1965)

“My country, right or wrong" is like saying, "My mother, drunk or sober.” G. K. Chesterton (1874-1936)

“America is still the land of opportunity: everyone can become a taxpayer.” - Anonymous

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Lead your household to serve God.

Joshua 24:15  "But if you refuse to serve the LORD, then choose today whom you will serve. Would you prefer the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates? Or will it be the gods of the Amorites in whose land you now live? But as for me and my family, we will serve the LORD.” (NLT2)

 “I cannot refrain from remarking that the most ominous sign of the coming destruction of our country is the passing of the American home. Americans live no longer in homes, but individually seclude themselves within the walls of the smart phone held in the palms of their hands. The members of many families hardly know each other, and the face of some popular TV star is too many spouses are as familiar as that of their wife or husband.  Let no one smile. Rather should we weep at the portent. It will do no good to wrap ourselves in the Stars and Stripes for protection. No nation can long endure whose people have sold themselves for bread and circuses. Our fathers sleep soundly, and the harsh bedlam of commercialized noise that engulfs us like something from Dante's Inferno cannot disturb their slumber. They left us a goodly heritage. To preserve that heritage we must have a national character as strong as theirs. And this can be developed only in the Christian home.”  --  Adapted from A. W. Tozer

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HIS WAY, not your way.

Jesus said "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” John 14:6 (NKJV)

“Every person has a terminal illness called sin.  The reason that followers of Jesus cling to him so tightly is because he is a great Physician who has the only cure. We could try to scrub away our sins with good deeds. Friends, it will not work. We can sincerely think that there are other ways of dealing with it, but we would be sincerely wrong.” —Lee Strobel

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Work at it.

Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might. [So,] whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as though you were working for the Lord and not for people.  Ecclesiastes 9:10 (NASB), Colossians 3:23 (TEV)

“It is not only prayer that gives God glory but work. Smiting on an anvil, sawing a beam, whitewashing a wall, driving horses, sweeping, scouring, everything gives God glory if being in his grace you do it as your duty. To go to Communion worthily gives God great glory, but to take food in thankfulness and temperance gives him glory too. To lift up the hands in prayer gives God glory, but a man with a dungfork in his hand, a woman with a slop pail, gives him glory too. He is so great that all things give him glory if you mean they should.”  Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889)

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HIS WAY, and not the world’s way.

Jeremiah 10:7 “Who would not fear You, O King of the nations? For this is Your rightful due. For among all the wise men of the nations, And in all their kingdoms, There is none like You.” (NKJV)

Romans 12:2  Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.  (NLT2)

“A good many people fret themselves over the rather improbable speculation that the earth may be blown asunder by nuclear weapons. The grimmer and more immediate prospect is that men and women may be reduced to a subhuman state through limitless indulgence in their own vices—with ruinous consequences to society.”  Russell Kirk

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How much longer will we be favored?

Psalm 44:3 "For they did not gain possession of the land by their own sword, Nor did their own arm save them; But it was Your right hand, Your arm, and the light of Your countenance, Because You favored them." (NKJV)

Here in Psalm 44:3, it speaks of the Israelites being given the Promised Land "because God favored them." The Psalmist acknowledges that the Israelites' conquest of the land did not come about due to their fierceness or military strength. Their success did not depend upon their own efforts or skills. Their achievement was made possible by One Source--that source of their blessing was God, and God alone. All of which prompts a very pertinent question for America today. How much longer will we as a nation be blessed by God's favor when people march in parades to celebrate the sins of the LGBTQ community, or when countless babies are slaughtered week after week by Planned Parenthood, or when arrogant, demeaning, rude and hate-filled words continue to emanate from the very top of our countries political leadership--both from Democrats and especially from the top of the Republican panicle of power? Just a few matters to ponder as we approach the Fourth of July celebration this week. -- Pastor Darvin

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GOD HAS CHOSEN YOU, SO MAKE HIM YOUR ROCK.

1 Peter 2:9  But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.  (NKJV)

“A thousand voices clamor for our attention, and a thousand causes vie for our support. But until we have learned to be satisfied with fellowship with God, until he is our rock and our fortress, we will be restless with our place in the world.”  Erwin W. Lutzer

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Be careful of the things you say.

Luke 6:45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks. (NKJV)

Matthew 12:36  But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. (NKJV)

“Words are born in the heart, not in the head.”  Oswald Chambers (1874-1917)

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A CLEAR CONSCIENCE

1 Timothy 1:18-19  18  This charge I commit to you, son Timothy, according to the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you may wage the good warfare, 19  having faith and a good conscience, which some having rejected, concerning the faith have suffered shipwreck. (NKJV)

“A sleeping pill will never take the place of a clear conscience.” Eddie Cantor (1892-1964)

“An uneasy conscience is a hair in the mouth.” Mark Twain (1835-1910)

“A man could not have anything upon his conscience if God did not exist, for the relationship between the individual and God, the God-relationship, is the conscience, and that is why it is so terrible to have even the least thing upon one's conscience, because one is immediately conscious of the infinite weight of God.”  Søren Kierkegaard (1813-1855)

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There will be no justice until we all walk humbly with God.

Micah 6:8 No, the LORD has told us what is good. What he requires of us is this: to do what is just, to show constant love, and to live in humble fellowship with our God. (TEV)

"The principles of the Bible are the groundwork of human freedom." Horace Greeley (1811-1872)

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