spiritualsnippets.com

Seeing life's events in the light of God's Word.

Did You Know?

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I Corinthians 10:31- “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”

 

Have you been reading Spiritual Snippets each week, unaware that I am an author of Christian Fiction?

My first book, Runaways, the Long Journey Home, was based on a recurring dream. I consider that book, and the four that have come after it, as opportunities to declare the love and forgiveness of Jesus.

Authors bear tremendous publishing and marketing expenses. The revenue from book sales is what keeps us afloat.

These summer months, with Covid keeping many of us inside, have been the perfect opportunity for new readers to experience just how exciting Christian Fiction can be. 

Here is the book description of Runaways from my Amazon Book page:

No Mama. An abusive father. A dog for a best friend.

Ten-year-old Jake runs away from his remote Appalachian home in the dead of winter.

He and Hound, face freezing temperatures and near starvation as they travel through mountainous terrain.

And, they narrowly escape Father as he tracks them with the very rifle he used to kill Sam and Mama.

Then, when Jake hears about God’s unconditional love for him, he is confronted with the biggest decision of his life:

Will he keep running…

Or face his father?

**All of my books are available on Amazon, Kobo, or at the Barnes and Noble order desk. Formats: paperback, e-book, and Audible. You can find out more about me on my two websites:  www.spiritualsnippets.com and www.brendacpoulosauthor.org   

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Shine!

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Matthew 5: 14-16. You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”

 

God is light.

In HIM there is no darkness at all.

When we become a child of God, we bear witness to that light. We also become heirs to that light through Jesus Christ.

At this difficult time for all of us on this planet, it’s more important than ever to let our light shine before men.

That can mean serving in our communities, praying for people in all countries and giving our time and resources.

There are millions of people that need our prayers, our words of encouragement.

Because of technology, we are able to stay in our homes and still connect with others around the world.

Being proactive may bring a harvest of souls to Christ as we have never known before.

May our prayers be many and our lights shine brightly!

 

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His Purpose for YOU

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Esther 4:14- “Perhaps this is the moment for which you have been created.”

 

If you are like me, the time has come to set goals for the New Year. I like to think of it as getting myself on course.

I begin by reading Esther 4:14. Then, I read the Tale of Three Trees. Like many outstanding works, its original author is unknown, but Angela Hunt retold this beautiful folktale and published it in 1957.

To recap, three trees grew on a mountainside. Each dreamed of what it would be when it grew up. The first tree dreamed of being used to build a beautiful treasure chest; the second wanted to be used to build the strongest sailing ship in the world; the third’s aspirations were to remain on the mountain where he would grow to be the tallest tree in the world so that when people looked up at him, they would raise their eyes to heaven, and think of God.

Years later, the trees had grown to maturity. They were cut down. Each was disappointed. The first was made into a plain box for animal feed; the second was crafted into a simple fishing boat, and the third was cut into strong beams.

But, that’s not the end of the story… because God fulfilled His purpose for each of them. 

The first box was used as a manger for Baby Jesus; the second became a fishing boat for Jesus and his disciples; and the third was used to build the cross and every time people saw it, they thought of God.

Each tree became so much more than he could ever have dreamed—because in the hands of God they fulfilled His purpose.

As we stand on the brink of 2020, may we yield to our Maker, praying that He will guide our lives and ultimately fulfill the purpose for which He created us.

Keep Looking Upward.

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Hungry?

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John 6:35– “Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.”

 

I pull up to a stoplight, my eyes scanning the intersection as I wait for it to turn green.

I notice a man on the corner holding a cardboard sign with one word: HUNGRY.

I roll down the window, motioning for him to approach my car and take the bill from my outstretched hand. To it I have clipped one word: JESUS and a Bible verse written in calligraphy.

John 6:35. 

Even though money may have met his immediate need, the verse says that with Jesus acknowledged as Savior and Lord, he need never experience spiritual hunger again.

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Do You Get Hives?

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Romans 10: 14-15  “How can they call on Him to save them unless they believe in Him?  And how can they believe in Him if they have never heard about Him?  And how can they hear about Him unless someone tells them?  And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent?”

 

Three of my friends joined me for lunch. Our first topic of conversation was the lavish baby shower we had attended the previous week.

“Sorry you missed it Jean. It was really a fun time.”

Almost in tears, Jean replied that she hadn’t received an invitation!

Knowing there was no way her good friend wouldn’t have invited her to her daughter’s baby shower, we were all puzzled as to what might have happened to her invitation.

We cannot take it for granted that someone else will tell a friend or loved one about Jesus. 

Do you get hives (like I do) when you think about knocking on a stranger’s door and sharing the gospel?

Did you know that “cold calling” on doors has become a rare form of evangelism?

More often, nowadays, people come to know Christ in relationship/friendship settings. What starts as a social connection evolves into friendships where we both feel comfortable sharing our faith.

Taking a loaf of bread or pie to a new neighbor, inviting someone to a BBQ or coffee, offering to help with a home project or car repair—each of these can bring about opportunities to share our faith once we have first grown our relationship.

If we don’t, who will?

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Directions Are Essential

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John 14:6- “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

 

Friends invited us to their vacation home for the weekend.

Saturday morning, we set out early. It would take 5 hours to drive there.

Halfway to our destination, my husband turned to me and asked, “You do know how to get there, right?”

“Sure. I have the address. We know the area. How hard can it be?”

He rolled his eyes.

When we got into “town” we called our friends and they stayed on the phone with us, giving us directions for each turn until we arrived at their cabin. 

It was not enough to have only the address. We needed directions.

Heaven may be our destination, but we need to know THE WAY. We can help others find Jesus, The Way, through God’s Word, the Bible.

These ministries are looking for donations of money or physical Bibles. They also need people who will act as distributors of their FREE BIBLES to others.

Bible senders.org

FreeBibles.net

Gideons International

Giveawaytheword.com

International Bible Givers. (They can be contacted at biblegivers@gmail.com.)

Little Bibles – http://www.littlebibleministry

Spirit One Ministry

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EXPUNGED

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Romans 6:6-  “For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with…”

 

I recently received the good news that a person we’d been praying for for many years has accepted Jesus as his Savior—in a prison cell. 

I praise God for his new life in Christ—a life filled with new friends, interests, purpose.

Sam Adeyemi, Nigerian pastor and motivational speaker, has said,“Real and sustainable change in a person’s life begins with a change in their sense of identity.”    

There will be many changes ahead for our friend, but one of the greatest will be the realization that he is a child of God. That he is loved and forgiven.

The man he was before no longer exists. He is no longer defined by his mistakes… the laws he has broken… the people he has disappointed.

Those things are now a part of the past—a past that has been wiped clean by the blood of Jesus.

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The Navigator

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Matthew 7:13,14-  “Heaven can be entered only through the narrow gate! The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide enough for all the multitudes who choose its easy way. But the Gateway to Life is small, and the road is narrow, and only a few ever find it.”

 

Hospice invited all of its volunteers to a celebration dinner last month. I looked at the address of the hotel on the envelope, clueless as to where it might be located.

I punched the address into my car’s navigation system and followed the highway from my home, past dozens of intersecting roads, and finally arrived at my destination.

Roads.

Paul was blinded on one.

Palm fronds lined the road as Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey.

The disciples saw Jesus on a road after His resurrection.

Zacchaeus climbed a tree in order to see Jesus when he traveled down a road.

The Bible tells us that broad is the road that leads to destruction and narrow is the road that leads into heaven.

Not as many travel on it. 

It is easier to go the “way of the world” and follow after one’s own devices than it is to follow The Lord. For this reason, Jesus shows us the picture of masses traveling down a wide road—following each other to destruction instead of following The Lord through the Gateway to Life.

He encourages us to take the narrow road.

Just like Zacchaeus, Paul, Matthew and the other disciples. 

Just like believers everywhere who long to spend an eternity in Heaven with Him.

 

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Nature Obeys His Voice

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Luke 8:25– “Where is your faith?” he asked his disciples. In fear and amazement they asked one another, “Who is this? He commands even the winds and the water, and they obey him.”

 

The gulf coast is bracing for yet another hurricane.

Disturbances such as tornadoes, tsunamis, and tropical depressions are in weather reports every day.

Heavy rainfall, hailstorms, blizzards—each are experienced somewhere in our world every hour.

Meteorologists track them.

Newscasters report them.

Citizens try to prepare for them.

But, none of us can change the weather.

That’s why the stories of Jesus calming the storms in the Bible are so miraculous. All of nature, including catastrophic occurrences, recognize and obey, His voice.

Just as the disciples cried out to Jesus for help when they were on tempest-driven waves, we can ask Him to calm the physical seas and/or the “storms” in our lives. 

The verse in Luke reminds us that if we have faith, we can take concerns of every kind to Him in prayer and trust Him to answer in accordance with His sovereign will.

 

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The Cross Was No Accident

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John 3:16- “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

 

The Cross.

For Christians, the symbol of hope.

The death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. Salvation through the forgiveness of sins for all who believe.

The cross was no accident. 

His great love motivated the Creator to sacrifice His Son.

We have painted them, gold-plated them, encrusted them with jewels, decorated our walls with them, worn them around our necks…

What is it that draws our hearts to the cross?

The Bible says that we love Him because He first loved us.

I think we are drawn to the cross because it is there that He showed us the extent of His pure, unconditional, unending, indescribable love.

No, the cross of Christ wasn’t lovely. It was “rugged” as the old hymn describes it. Built with rough, splintered wood that was held together by crude nails.

Christ was nailed to it and died the death of a common criminal. How unbelievable He would do this for you and for me.

Yet, Jesus welcomed the cross. He had planned this moment from the beginning. It had all come down to this.

But the cross was no more the end for Jesus than it is for us. 

Coming to the cross with Thanksgiving for the love that put Him there, rejoicing at the open tomb announcing His resurrection, leaving our sin there and following Christ.

That’s just the beginning. 

Let’s celebrate it today. 

He is worthy of all praise. Crown Him with many crowns. Lord of Lords. King of Kings.

The precious  Lamb of God. 

 

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