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Posts tagged ‘Domestic worker’

{ Day 253 }.

Guard my life, for I am devoted to you. You are my God; save your servant who trusts in you. Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I call to you all day long. Bring joy to your servant, for to you, O Lord, I lift up my soul. —Psalm 86:2-4

Like Jesus many years later, David was born in Bethlehem, the youngest of eight sons of Jesse and the lowest in rank and privilege in the family structure. In his early years, he became a shepherd. David lived for several years in what amounted to solitary confinement in a desert environment. His flock was small, so he was the only one needed to do the tiresome work (1 Sam. 17:28). He was very much alone in harsh terrain. You have to wonder what God saw in David that He didn’t see in his brothers, who are little known except as scoffers. The key is in these Bethlehem years. David was too young to have done anything extraordinary. He hadn’t cast out demons, healed the sick, or preached anointed sermons. His great exploits all lay in the future. We might think of him as a gas station attendant or a janitor. His life was filled with menial tasks nobody wanted to do, yet he did them with a spirit of devotion toward the Lord. That was David’s first victory. He had a heart that sought God when seeking God seemed the least obvious thing to do.


Father, I often wonder what You saw in me that qualified me for Your work of grace and gift of righteousness. I devote my life to You, and say yes to whatever You desire for me to do. I love You with my whole heart.

David had a yes in his spirit, even
in his routine, boring job.


The Secret to Running a Strong Christian Race.

(© Peter van der Sluijs / Creative Commons)

For most of us, envisioning how God wants to use us is easy. The real work comes in faithfully taking steps each day in the direction of His will.

At times, the way seems clearly laid out for us. But at others we feel confused, unprepared and inadequate.

You’ve undoubtedly had the experience of ministering to someone and coming away thinking you had utterly failed. But a few days later you encountered that person again, and she told you your ministry was an answer to prayer!

Admittedly, my greatest foe in pursuing God’s purposes has been my own fear of my heart’s intentions. The Scriptures say we can’t fully know why we do what we do (see Jer. 17:9). There have been times when I decided that it was easier to “err on the side of caution” rather than risk offending God because I acted out of impure motives.

But God brought powerful conviction to me through the story of the “wicked, lazy servant” who failed to invest what his master entrusted to him because he was afraid (Matt. 25:26; see also vv. 24-25,27-30, NIV).

In The Message his behavior is characterized as “criminal” (v. 26). Look at the reason this servant offered for being unproductive: “‘Master, I know you have high standards and hate careless ways, that you demand the best and make no allowances for error. I was afraid I might disappoint you, so I found a good hiding place and secured your money. Here it is, safe and sound down to the last cent’” (vv. 24-25).

According to this passage, the servant feared and blamed his master. He saw him as cruel, demanding, unmerciful and evidently powerless to undo any mistakes the servant might make.

My personal anxieties are similarly rooted in a narrow, distorted view of God’s love and grace. Once I embrace certain misconceptions about Him, it becomes necessary for me to play it safe in order to protect myself.

But God does not commend me for avoiding risks. The unfruitful servant’s careful behavior greatly angered his master, whose verdict on his behavior was swift.

“‘Take the thousand and give it to the one who risked the most. And get rid of this “play-it-safe” who won’t go out on a limb. Throw him out into utter darkness’” (vv. 28-30).

At the close of her online Bible study Believing God, Beth Moore declares that God credited righteousness to Abraham because of His faith—not his perfection. She concludes that it is better for us to believe God and act on what we believe than remain within our comfort zones “faithlessly.”

The secret to running a strong Christian race is consistently walking with God in faithful obedience, trusting Him with the outcome of every step. Often the safest thing to do will appear to be the most risky. But don’t ever be afraid to “go out on a limb” for God.


Ask God for the kind of faith that pleases Him and moves you to action. Pray for the courage needed to step out and do His will whatever the cost. Pray that believers would truly reflect the love of God while at the same time stand for righteousness and abide by His Word. Pray that God’s love and truth would permeate the darkness, lift the veil of deception in the church and across the nation, and bring lasting change by His Spirit and through revival. Continue to pray for the persecuted church, Israel and those in authority over us. 1 Tim 2:1-4; 1 Pet. 5:6-11; James 2:17-26



Four Simple and Radical Words: “Not So with You”?.

Ambition has become something of a dirty word in our day. To many people it implies an overwhelming desire for personal advancement regardless of the cost and regardless of who is hurt in the process. Let’s face it. There is entirely too much of that kind of ambition in the business world. In every company or office you can almost always find a few people who are willing to play fast and loose with the truth if it will help them climb the corporate ladder. They cut corners, they lie on their expense reports, they spread malicious gossip, they abuse their authority, and they know how to stab you in the back and walk away laughing. In the truest sense of the phrase, they are looking out for number one.

Jesus knew all about men and women like that. And he understood that his followers would be tempted to use the same tactics. With four simple words he radically broke with that kind of ambition: “Not so with you” (Luke 22:26). Then he painted an entirely picture of ambition. “Do you want to be a leader? That’s great because the world needs good leaders. Here’s what I want you to do. Become a servant. Pick up a towel and start washing dirty feet. Think of yourself as a slave and not as a master.”

No doubt the disciples recoiled at the thought of taking the menial role of a servant. After all, these were the geniuses who had just been arguing about who was going to have the seat of honor at the big banquet in the Kingdom. The whole point of picking the seat of honor is to have someone else serve you.

“Not so with you.” With those four words Jesus turned the values of the world upside down and established a new fraternity—the Royal Order of Servants. Want to join?

Who is the most Christlike person you know? He (or she) is probably busy washing dirty feet because that’s what servants do. Want to be like Jesus today? Find a towel and basin and get started.

Taken from “Servant” by Keep Believing Ministries (used by permission).

Ray Pritchard

Being a better friend…

“I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.”
-John 15:15

How would you feel?

You’re with a friend and one of his or her friends, who you do not know, talk for a while completely ignoring you. Your friends-in-need know they can call on you at any time, but they don’t call. Your family members live close by but don’t talk to you unless they need something. You throw a big party, inviting everyone you know, and no one shows up.

I know how I would feel…unimportant, rejected, unloved, used…

Can you imagine how Jesus feels? He is the friend who walks with you and is beside you at all times but is not introduced. He is the friend who has promised to be there for you in all of your needs, yet isn’t asked to do so. He is the friend who is always with you, but you don’t talk to him. He is the friend who has invited you and your friends to a salvation party, but you have other things to do.

Together, let’s all be better friends with Jesus. We will be blessed and he will be filled with joy to be closer to us in everything we do.

Prayer: Dear Lord, I want to be a better friend to you. And I desire your blessings in my life. I love you with all my heart. Amen.

Devotion: How do you neglect your friendship with Jesus? When do you feel the closest to him?

By Fred Gillett, Crystal Cathedral Pastor.

Silent Change.

When the ruler of the feast tasted the water now become wine, and didn’t know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the ruler of the feast called the bridegroom, – John 2:9

Christ wrought this miracle without noise or ostentation. He said nothing to call attention to what He was going to do. The people about Him did not know of the wonderful work He had wrought. So He works today. He is not in the storm, the earthquake, the whirlwind; but in the “still small voice.” His kingdom comes into men’s hearts, not with observation and show, but silently, without parade. The bad life is changed, by His work, into moral purity, and yet no one saw the change made or the hand that wrought it. Silently help comes in the hours of need; silently prayer’s answers glide down; silently the angels come and go.

It is significant also that the “servants which drew the water knew.” Those who work with Christ are admitted into the inner chamber where omnipotence is unveiled. The lesson is very simple and beautiful. Christ takes into His confidence those who serve Him; calls them no more servants but friends. Those who do Christ’s will know of His doctrine, and see His ways of working. If we would see Christ’s power and glory, we must enter heartily into His service. Ofttimes it is in the lowliest ways, and in the paths of humble, self-denying service, that the most of His glory appears.

The ruler did not know whence the wine came; is it not often so with us? People do not know whence the blessings come which glide so softly into their hearts. Many a troubled Christian kneels in prayer in great fear, oppressed by a sense of need, and rises with new rich joy in his heart, yet knowing not whence the strange sweet blessing came. We drink the cups which God fills for us with heavenly sweetness, we receive the gifts which are brought down to us from the very throne, and yet ofttimes we do not know whence these things come, nor recognize the divine presence that works so close beside us.

By Vine.

Bible In A Year: March 5th…

By Book Old Testament New Testament Proverbs & Psalms
Joshua 7-9 Leviticus 13:1-59 Mark 12:28-44 Proverbs 6:20-29

Strike hits Greece in bid to derail austerity plan.


ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greek trade unions launched a general strike and nationwide protests on Tuesday against a new package ofausterity measures, to be voted on this week, which would condemn Greece to more years of hardship in exchange for rescue loans.

Flights to and from the country stopped for three hours at the start of a 48-hour strike that closed schools, halted train and ferry services, and left Athens without public transport or taxis while state hospitals ran on emergency staff.

More than 35,000 people marched in two separate demonstrations in Athens organized by labor unions. Another 20,000 gathered to protest in the country’s second largest city of Thessaloniki.

Police were on alert for potential violence, as most major anti-austerity protests over the past three years have degenerated into riots.

The demonstrations will culminate Wednesday, when lawmakers vote on a €13.5 billion ($17.3 billion) package of spending cuts and tax increases over the next two years.

The outcome of the vote is far from certain due to disagreements in the five-month-old coalition government and a reluctance among center-left lawmakers to approve yet more austerity measures. But the rejection of the savings package would leave Greece facing the threat of a default on its mountain of debt that could force it to eventually exit the euro bloc.

This is the biggest political crisis Conservative Prime Minister Antonis Samaras has faced since he formed the coalition in June. His small Democratic Left coalition partner has said it will not back the measures, while a handful of lawmakers from the third coalition party, the Socialists, are expected to vote against the austerity package.

“The government’s majority is narrowing and the general strike further puts pressure on MPs to vote against the government’s plans,” said Martin Koehring of the Economist Intelligence Unit. “On balance, however, we expect the package to be approved by MPs because the alternative would be the government running out of cash … and facing default and potential euro exit.”

The government combined has 176 of Parliament’s 300 seats, and needs an absolute majority of those present to pass the bill. Without the Democratic Left, Samaras’ conservatives and the Socialists control 160 votes — not counting dissenters.

The main opposition Radical Left Coalition has urged demonstrators to surround Parliament during Wednesday night’s vote.

“The new measures must not pass for they will turn the country into a financial and social desert,” a party statement said. “They will lead us decades back, without medicine or state healthcare, without schools and universities, without a future, with endless armies of unemployed, suicides and desperate people.”

The deeply unpopular measures include new deep pension cuts and tax hikes, a two-year increase in the retirement age to 67, and laws that will make it easier to fire and transfer civil servants. The country is suffering a deep recession set to enter a sixth year, and record high unemployment of 25 percent.

If Parliament rejects the package, Greece will lose access to the rescue loans from the European Union and International Monetary Fund that have kept it afloat since May 2010.

The country would then run out of money — as soon as by Nov. 16, according to Samaras — default on its debts and, most likely, abandon the 17-member eurozone. That would create hyperinflation as the new currency plummets in value, intensifying Greeks’ misery.

A Greek exit from the euro would also have severe international repercussions, fueling fears that other troubled eurozone members could likewise leave the currency bloc.

Sky-high interest rates have kept Greece out of international bond markets since 2010. However, the country retains a market presence through regular short-term debt issues — mostly bought up by domestic lenders that need the paper as collateral for vital European financing.

On Tuesday, Greece raised €1.3 billion ($1.6 billion) in a 26-week treasury bill auction that saw its borrowing costs ease slightly to 4.41 percent, from 4.46 percent last month. Demand was 1.7 times the amount on offer.


Costas Kantouris in Thessaloniki contributed to this report.


By NICHOLAS PAPHITIS | Associated Press

Is Tim Tebow a Chauvinist?.

Tim Tebow says he wants a wife with “a servant’s heart.” Does that make him a misogynist?

Jezebel, a feminist website, picked up on comments Tebow made in an interview with Vogue magazine, in which he said he wanted a wife who lived up to the high standards set for him by his mother and sisters. He wanted to find a woman he found beautiful, he said, but, beyond that, he wanted a wife with a “servant’s heart.”

Jezebel (their name for themselves; I’m not name-calling) summed this up as that Tebow’s perfect woman is “hot, kind and servile.”

I’ve been saying for years that I don’t think Christians ought to be “outraged” by what the outside world says about us. And I’m not outraged by this. But I think it’s a good opportunity to tell our non-Christian neighbors what Christians mean when they say “a servant’s heart.”

What we don’t mean is that this is something unique to women. I know, I know. You hear this language and you assume Tebow wants a Stepford wife in a French maid’s uniform, massaging his feet and refilling his glass of sweet tea. But this isn’t what evangelical Christians mean when they say “a servant’s heart.”

First of all, in Christianity, a “servant” isn’t a slur.

Now, I get why that’s hard to understand. Our apostolic fathers didn’t get it either. They debated who would be the “greatest” and the “leader” among them. Jesus pointed out that he was the one serving them broken bread and poured-out wine, and he is the king of the entire cosmos. “Who is greater,” Jesus asked, “The one who reclines at table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at table? But I am among you as the one who serves” (Lk. 22:27).

Jesus serves his Bride, the church, by washing her feet in the upper room. This is what greatness is, Jesus tells Christians, to serve one another and to outdo one another in building one another up. That servant-heartedness isn’t unique to women; all Christians are called to it. And it isn’t antithetical to strong leadership. Serving is precisely how Jesus rules as king, and how he prepares his people, men and women, to rule with him in the reign to come.

Husbands serve wives. Wives serve husbands. Children serve parents. Parents serve children. Pastors serve churches. Churches serve pastors. That concept might be demeaning in the world of Vogue, but it’s not in a new creation where “the leader is the one who serves” (Lk. 22:26).

I’m not upset at our feminist friends for reading Tebow wrong on this. It’s easy to do, if you don’t know the back-story. But it’s a good reminder to all of us, because we Christians have a hard time differentiating between servanthood and servility too. I know I do, and Jesus has to keep breaking in here and reminding me.

When Tim Tebow says he wants a wife with “a servant’s heart,” he is, like any Christian man, hoping also for a woman who is seeking a husband with “a servant’s heart.” It doesn’t mean he wants a doormat. It just means he wants a Christian.

(Image Credit)

By Russell Moore

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