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SALVATION:

TRUE STORY: A little boy decided to make a sailboat — a little toy sailboat. He fashioned it out of wood, carved it, and painted it red. He took it down to the stream to sail it, when a puff of wind blew it from his hand and finally, out of his sight. He was dejected and heartbroken. Several days later, as he was passing a secondhand store, he looked in the window, and there was his own boat. Someone had found it and was trying to sell it. He went into the store and demanded it. The proprietor said, “Son, I cannot give it to you. I purchased it from someone. It is for sale, if you want it, you may purchase it.” The little fellow said, “How much is it?” The man told him. The youngster went, worked, and earned the money. He then went back to the store, put the money upon the counter, and said, “Now, let me have the boat.” The little boy took the boat that was the work of his own hands, and walked out of the store caressing it and talking to it. He said, “Little boat, you’re mine; you are twice mine. You are mine because I made you, and you are mine because I bought you back.” God can say that to every one of us sitting here: “You are mine. You are mine because I created you, and you are mine because I redeemed you. I bought you back.”

SEEKING GOD:

TRUE STORY: The life of a man named Martin Luther shows what can happen when someone decides to give everything they are and have to God. Martin Luther lived from 1483 to 1556 in Germany where, at the time, Catholicism was the faith of 99% of the people. Martin’s father, a poor man, rose from his poverty and became the owner of a copper mine. His father was determined to see his son ascend to civil service and thereby bring honor to the family. At the age of seventeen, in 1501, Martin entered the university. Martin received his bachelor’s degree after just one year in 1502! Three years later, in 1505, he received a master’s degree. In the summer of 1505, Martin Immediately enrolled in the law school of that same university. Shortly thereafter, a lightening bolt struck near to Martin as he was returning to school. Terrified, he cried out, “St. Anne if you will help me, I’ll become a monk!” Martin survived, and he kept his bargain. He dropped out of law school and entered the monastery there. Martin fully dedicated himself to his monastic life. As always he gave it everything he had. He devoted himself to fasts, punishing his flesh for long hours in prayer. He travelled on pilgrimages, and daily made constant confession. However, the more he tried to do for God, it seemed, the more aware he became of his sinfulness. Martin felt like he just could not find peace with God. Martin Luther’s superior was a man named Johann Von Staupitz. This man decided that young Martin needed more work to do to distract him from all this thinking. He ordered Martin to pursue more academics.

In 1507 Martin Luther was ordained to the priesthood. In 1508 he began teaching theology at the university of Wittenberg. Martin kept studying and studying. On 19 October 1512, the university of Wittenberg conferred upon martin Luther the degree of doctor of theology. But Martin did not stop there either. He kept studying the Bible, he kept praying and seeking, and doing all kinds of things trying to repent. Martin could not be satisfied until he got closer to God. One day, Martin came across a verse in in the book of Habakkuk, chapter 2, verse 4 which said, “The just shall live by his faith.” (See Rom. 1:17, Gal. 3:11, Heb. 10:37-38) One day Martin Luther had a break through. Martin now believed and taught that salvation is a gift of God’s grace, received by faith and trust in God’s promise to forgive sins. This comes to us freely by Christ’s death on the cross. This, he believed was God’s work from beginning to end. Martin began to write some articles called “The 95 Thesis.” It so happened at the time, there was a Dominican priest named Johann Tetzel. Mr. Tetzel was trying to raise money for the church. He was being very successful. How he was doing this was by the selling of indulgences. He told people if they would give him huge amounts of money, the payment would be accepted to get their dead relatives out of purgatory. (Purgatory being the place where people go who are not right with God.)

Knowing the truth, the just shall live by faith in Christ’s death on the cross Martin Luther began to get a fire inside of him. Martin took his 95 Thesis and nailed it to the door of the church. Martin stated, this is not right, I protest!” Martin was locked up and thrown in jail by the church! So … since there was nothing else he could do he began translating the Bible from Latin into German. It was also about that time (You see God is always on a time schedule) Johannes Guttenberg was inventing the printing press. What better thing to try it out on, than Martin Luther’s Bible in German. They began to print, they began to pass them out, and revival began to sweep the country of Germany.

Martin Luther was so on fire, that this action is believed to be the beginning of the protestant movement. Today, we call ourselves protestant. The problem is we have forgotten what we are protesting. We need to continue to protest sin, and protest disobedience to God’s Word.

SELFISH:

I gave a little party this afternoon at three. It was very small, three guests in all: I … myself … and me. Myself ate all the sandwiches, while I drank up the tea. And it was I … and myself Who passed the pie to me.

I love you for loving me. You love me for loving you. So much in love with us are we that you could kiss you, and I could kiss me. (Tommy Smothers)

There’s a clever young guy named Somebody Else, there’s nothing this guy can’t do. He is busy from morning till way late at night, just substituting for you. You’re asked to do this or you’re asked to do that, and what is your reply? Get Somebody Else to do that job. He’ll do it much better than I. There is so much to do in this weary old world, so much and workers so few. And Somebody Else, all weary and worn, Is still substituting for you. Far too many have been content to let Somebody Else do the work. The problem with this is, that there aren’t that many Somebody Else’s out there. And those there are have grown weary and tired.

“The Property Laws of a Toddler.” 1. If I like it, it’s mine. 2. If it’s in my hand, it’s mine. 3. If I can take it from you, it’s mine. 4. If I had it a little while ago, it’s mine. 5. If it’s mine, it must never appear to be yours in any way. 6. If I’m doing or building something, all the pieces are mine. 7. If it looks just like mine, it’s mine. 8. If I saw it first, it’s mine. 9. If you are playing with something and you put it down, it automatically becomes mine. 10. If it becomes broken, it’s yours.

SIGNS:

I understand (I’ve been told) there is a Boy Scout summer camp located in Arnold, California, called Camp Wolfeboro. Apparently there is a rock there one can use as a sign for weather conditions. The following weather indications are listed: If the rock is wet, it’s raining – If the rock is swinging, the wind is blowing – If the rock casts a shadow, the sun is shining – If the rock does not cast a shadow and is not wet, the sky is cloudy – If the rock is not visible – it is foggy – If the rock is white – it is snowing – If the rock is coated with ice – there is a frost – If the ice is thick, it’s a heavy frost – If the rock is bouncing, there is an earthquake – If the rock is under water, there is a flood. – If the rock is warm, it is sunny – If the rock is missing – there was a tornado – If the rock is wet and swinging violently – there is a hurricane – finally, If the rock has white splats on it, watch out for birds.

SIN:

The Bible says, “Be sure your sins will find you out.” (Num. 32:23)

Two young adults were involved in a fender bender. At first they were angry with one another, each accusing the other of being at fault. Finally, calmer heads prevailed and they decided to call the police and let the officials settle the matter. As they waited for the police to arrive they got involved in a conversation. They discovered that both of them were single, and that they had a lot in common. As a matter of fact, the chemistry began to seem to flow between the two. Finally the young woman said, “You know, maybe it was God’s will that we had this accident, and we get to meet one another.” The young man, who was really attracted to the young woman, said, “I think you are absolutely right!” And then the young woman said, “Its silly for us to stand out here in the cold. Let’s get inside my car & sit where it will be a little warmer.” And the young man agreed. As they sat talking in the car the young woman said, “You know, I just happened to be at the store and I bought a bottle of wine. I have some paper cups. How about if we have a toast to this chance meeting.” The young man thought, well, I don’t want to lose this moment so he agreed. They made their toast, and he gulped down his wine. It was then he noticed she hadn’t toasted. So he said, “Aren’t you going to drink yours?” She said, “No, I think I’ll just wait for the police to arrive to assess the damages.

Paul Harvey tells the story of 4 high school boys late one morning. They said it was due to a flat tire. The teacher told them they had missed a test. But she was going to let them make it up. She put them in the four different corners of the room. There was only one question on the test, which tire was flat?

A busload of politicians, were headed for a convention. They had to go on a detour due to highway construction. The driver lost control of the bus and they hit a tree head on. A farmer saw the mess shortly after it happened. He got his tractor and buried all the politicians. The police came to investigate. They asked the farmer why he didn’t call the coroner to make sure they were dead. The farmer said, “Well some of them told me they weren’t. But, you know how those politicians lie.

STUBBORNESS:

TRUE STORY: In the summer of 1986, two ships collided in the Black Sea off the coast of Russia. Hundreds of passengers died as they were hurled into the icy waters below. An investigation revealed the cause of the accident. It wasn’t a technology problem, like radar malfunction, or even thick fog. The cause was human stubbornness. Each captain was aware of the other ship’s presence nearby. Both could have steered clear, but according to news reports, neither captain wanted to give way to the other. Each was too proud to yield first. By the time they came to their senses, it was too late.

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