Month: December 1998

The Ultimate Real Estate

The University of Colorado's Fiske Planetarium needed money, so its director dreamed up a comical fund-raiser. He printed brochures that offered 1,000-acre lots on the planet Mars for only $20.

The Power Of Words

One major area of breakdown in marriages and families today is communication. The apostle Paul used the word corrupt to describe speech that has the power to tear people down, adults and children alike (Eph. 4:29). He also stated that good communication is "necessary edification," for it has the power to build people up.

Terror Or Trust?

A sudden squall swept down with almost hurricane force through the funnel-like ravines above the lake of Tiberias, 682 feet below sea level. Huge waves washed into the little boat, threatening to sink it.

Secret Service

When we serve God in secret, we receive a double reward. Not only will God one day reward us "openly" (Mt. 6:4), but we will enjoy the memory of what we did.

More Than Giftwrap

Every year at Christmas, James Baxter watches people rip apart his company's product and throw it away. All the hours of creative design and careful manufacturing are gone in a flash. And he has no regrets. As president of the nation's largest maker of Christmas giftwrap, Mr. Baxter says, "What we don't want is our product sitting in somebody's closet."

Through The Eyes Of Faith

What a touching scene—an aged man holding the baby Jesus in his arms and praising God! (Lk. 2:27-32). Simeon had been assured by the Holy Spirit that he would not die till he had seen the promised Messiah, and he came into the temple at the very moment that Joseph and Mary entered with the baby Jesus.

Big Plans

Two thousand years ago, there were no earthly plans for celebrating Jesus' birth. Quietly and unannounced, Joseph and Mary entered Bethlehem and searched for a place to spend the night.

'I'm A Present!'

A few days before Christmas, the 3-year-old daughter of Pastor Jeff Callender was caught up in the excitement of gifts and giving. He writes, "One morning she was picking up, examining, shaking, and guessing what was inside every package. Then, in a burst of inspiration, she picked up a big red bow that had fallen off one present and held it on the top of her head. She looked up at me with twinkling eyes and beamed a smile as she said, 'Look at me, Daddy! I'm a present!'"

The Truth About Sin

A man rebuked me for admitting that I still sin and often need forgiveness. He quoted verses 6 and 9 of 1 John 3 and said that a Christian does not sin, implying that I was not a Christian. I assured him that I don't want to sin, but that I can't say I'm Christlike in everything I think, say, and do. I suggested that the verses in 1 John 3 refer to a sinful lifestyle, and I pointed him to other verses in 1 John which teach that Christians still need forgiveness (1:8-10; 2:1).

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