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You are welcome to use the writings on these pages or pass them on to others who might find a touch from God in the words. Our purpose is always to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with the world. Please remember to give credit to the Author who has given you everything, and keep in remembrance the vessel which He used to bring these words to you. We pray that this site may be a blessing to you and anyone with whom its been shared. All rights reserved. Peggy Hoppes

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Our Lord is so good, He grants us many blessings. We can see Him in the daily course of events, in our homes, our jobs, our lives. I pray that these words help you to grow in your faith and recognize His hand in even the most mundane circumstances.

The picture to the right is of a Celtic Chapel located in Cornwall England. This building is approximately 1700 years old, and contains a holy well known for its healing powers.

(Click for enlarged)

A WORD FOR TODAY, April 19, 2024

“After these things, the son of the woman, the mistress of the house, became sick; and his sickness was so severe that there was no breath left in him. She said to Elijah, ‘What have I to do with you, you man of God? You have come to me to bring my sin to memory, and to kill my son!’ He said to her, ‘Give me your son.’ He took him out of her bosom, and carried him up into the room where he stayed, and laid him on his own bed. He cried to Yahweh, and said, ‘Yahweh my God, have you also brought evil on the widow with whom I am staying, by killing her son?’ He stretched himself on the child three times, and cried to Yahweh, and said, ‘Yahweh my God, please let this child’s soul come into him again.’ Yahweh listened to the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came into him again, and he revived. Elijah took the child, and brought him down out of the room into the house, and delivered him to his mother; and Elijah said, ‘Behold, your son lives.’ The woman said to Elijah, ‘Now I know that you are a man of God, and that Yahweh’s word in your mouth is truth.’” 1 Kings 17:17-24, WEB

Professor Craig Keener tells the story of a miraculous resurrection in Africa. A two-year-old girl was bitten by a snake. She cried for help but was as good as dead by the time her mother reached her. By the time they reached medical help in a neighboring village, the little girl had been unresponsive and not breathing for at least three hours. She certainly would have had significant brain damage if she was even alive. The mother sought a friend who was an evangelist. They prayed over the girl, who began to breathe again. It was obvious the next day thta she was not only alive, but undamaged. The little girl grew to a pastor in her country. Craig knows the skepticism we have about stories like this. He has them too, except that this story happened to relatives.

We don’t always know why someone experiences something miraculous. We are skeptical because we have not seen anything like this happen. We credit some things as miracles, but if we are honest with ourselves, we can usually see scientific or natural explanations for those wonders. Many even suggest that the stories of resurrection in the scriptures can be explained. They weren’t really dead. It is good for us to be skeptical about the claims of miracles in the world, because not all claim is real. People die and stay dead every day around the world, though there are stories of people who were not really dead when they were buried. A man named Johann Gottfried Taberger created a bell system for coffins in 1892. He attached strings to the body which were connected to a bell above ground which could be heard if someone awoke in the coffin. Even those who are brought back from the brink of death (or miraculously death itself) will die again. All healing is temporary.

Today’s text continues the story we began with Elijah and the widow from Zarephath. Yesterday, God through Elijah blessed the woman’s mercy with unending jars of meal and oil so that she and her son could survive the famine. She saw this miracle with her own eyes this miracle, and yet she was still skeptical. She did not believe in the God of Elijah (see 1 Kings 17:12.) Her disbelief came to a head when her son died. “Why save me if you were going to take my son anyway?” She blamed Elijah for her loss and wished he had never entered her life.

Elijah took the boy into his room, cried out to God, and God raised the boy. This sign was the one to turn her doubt to belief. She accepted that Elijah was a man of God, that God’s Word is real and true. In this story we see that God grants glimmers of the miraculous to build faith.

We are reminded that we are like the widow of Zarephath: we don’t always believe. We are skeptical. We doubt that what we are hearing is true. We look for scientific or natural explanations for these wonders. Yet, we are reminded by any miracles, especially those recorded in the scriptures, that Jesus is Lord over everything, even death. God’s proof is the resurrection of Jesus, and we can rest in the knowledge that we will have new life, too, because we believe. We might not know miraculous healing or be raised from the dead, and those who do experience these wonders will die again one day. We, however, have the hope that does not disappoint that we will one day be raised with Christ and dwell with God forever and ever in His eternal kingdom.

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A WORD FOR TODAY, April 18, 2024

“After a while, the brook dried up, because there was no rain in the land. Yahweh’s word came to him, saying, ‘Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and stay there. Behold, I have commanded a widow there to sustain you.’ So he arose and went to Zarephath; and when he came to the gate of the city, behold, a widow was there gathering sticks. He called to her, and said, ‘Please get me a little water in a jar, that I may drink.’ As she was going to get it, he called to her, and said, ‘Please bring me a morsel of bread in your hand.’ She said, ‘As Yahweh your God lives, I don’t have a cake, but a handful of meal in a jar, and a little oil in a jar. Behold, I am gathering two sticks, that I may go in and bake it for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die.’ Elijah said to her, ‘Don’t be afraid. Go and do as you have said; but make me a little cake from it first, and bring it out to me, and afterward make some for you and for your son. For Yahweh, the God of Israel says, “The jar of meal will not run out, and the jar of oil will not fail, until the day that Yahweh sends rain on the earth.”’ She went and did according to the saying of Elijah; and she, and he, and her house, ate many days. The jar of meal didn’t run out, and the jar of oil didn’t fail, according to Yahweh’s word, which he spoke by Elijah.” 1 Kings 17:7-16, WEB

All these constellations have ancient stories about how they ended up in the sky. Orion was a hunter and he is still hunting with his dog, another constellation located nearby. Cassiopeia was a queen who still sits on her throne in the sky. Ursa Major and Ursa Minor are two bears with stories of their own, but they also look like big dippers in the sky with a story explaining how a dipper could end up in the heavens.

There was famine and drought; people were dying from thirst, including the mother of a young girl. The girl, desperate to help her mother, took a ladle and she searched for water. She found a spring, nearly dry and dripping very slowly. With great patience the young girl held the ladle to the dripping water and filled up the cup of the ladle. She went home carefully so as not to waste a single drop, but she met a dog suffering from thirst along the way; she had mercy and gave him a few sips. When she got home, her mother insisted that the water go first to a servant who’d worked very hard all day. Then the mother had her fill. The girl’s humble ladle had turned into a miraculous silver dipper that never ran out of water. Just as the girl thought there might not be enough for her, a stranger knocked on the door and asked for water. The girl gave him the ladle. After he took a drink, he spilled the water which became a cool fountain bubbling up from the floor. The ladle turned into a diamond and was taken into the heavens by the stranger where we still see it today. The girl’s mercy was returned with great blessings.

We know the myths that surround the mysteries of the heavens are not scientific truth, but they are the way the ancients shared important lessons with the younger generations. When star gazing with their children, parents could use the constellations as object lessons about faith, trust, honesty, courage, wisdom, strength, and other virtues. Many of these lessons have been passed on from generation to generation, though not often as myths from the heavens.

There are those who consider the stories found in the scriptures as nothing more than myths, something not to be believed as true. They often agree that there are valuable lessons, but reasonable people do not believe in bottomless flour and oil jars. Yet, in faith we see this story of the widow of Zarephath, and we know that God has done miraculous things for those who love Him. The widow heard the word of God and believed that He would provide for her and her son, giving her final meal to Elijah. I often wonder if I ever came to the point of being down to my last meal whether I could have the same mercy as that young girl or the widow. I don’t think we could guess. We can only pray that God will give us the strength to trust His promises and know His faithfulness in our times of need, for He will provide.

The following links provide some specially chosen scripture that tell the stories of the Birth and Passion of our Lord as Saviour Jesus Christ, as well as a fictional perspective of the Crucifixion. Spend time in God's Word, read about His life and learn of the wonderful gifts He has for you. Know Jesus Christ and honour Him today. Thanks be to God.

The Birth of our Saviour

The Story of our Saviour's Passion

The Crucifixion, a fictional perspective

When researching, I use several versions of the bible, including the New International Version and English Standard Version. Due to copyright restrictions, I have not included quotes for the scriptures on some of the archives, but highly encourage you to open your own bibles to read the scripture passages for yourselves. Where scripture is quoted, it is usually the American Standard Version or World English Bible which belong to the public domain. Any other versions used in quotes are identified.

The devotion posted on Wednesday is based on the Lectionary texts used by millions of Christians each Sunday. The Lectionary consists of four texts: an Old Testament passage, a Psalm, a passage from one of the Epistles and a Gospel text and follows the church calendar. Archives for these writings are found at Midweek Oasis.

You are welcome to use these words to share the Gospel of our Lord Jesus. Please remember to give credit to the Author who has given you these gifts, and keep in remembrance the vessel which He used to bring them to you. We pray that this site may be a blessing to you and anyone with whom you've shared it. Peggy Hoppes