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Learning from Past Failures – By Dr Glenn Cummings

One day Samson encountered a lion and slew it. The Bible says, “Sometime later, when he went back…he turned aside to look at the lion’s carcass. In it he saw…some honey. He scooped out the honey with his hands and ate as he went along” (vv. 8-9).
There’s a lesson here for you. When you take time to stop and reflect, you discover “honey” in your experiences that you can eat and grow stronger and wiser. When you reflect, you are able to put things into perspective; you gain new appreciation for things you didn’t notice before. Few of us have clear perspective in the heat of the moment. Most of us who have survived a traumatic experience usually avoid similar situations at all costs. This can leave us with unresolved issues that leave us tied up in knots. Reflective thinking enables us to distance ourselves from the intense emotions of an experience and see it with fresh eyes. Indeed, this process is one of the first steps to getting rid of our emotional baggage.

Make the Most of Your Time – By Dr. Glenn Cummings

The life of John Wesley is a great example of the scriptural principle “making the most of your time.” He averaged three sermons a day for fifty-four years, preaching a total of more than 44,000 times in his life. In doing this he traveled by horseback and carriage more than 200,000 miles—about 5,000 miles a year. Even for a very productive man, that would seem to be a full-time effort.
Still, Wesley found time to write and edit. His published works include a four-volume commentary on the entire Bible, a five-volume work on natural philosophy, a four-volume work on church history, and a dictionary of the English language. He also wrote histories of England and Rome; grammars on the Hebrew, Latin, Greek, French, and English languages; three works on medicine; six volumes of church music; and seven volumes of sermons; and he edited a library of fifty volumes known as the “Christian Library.”
Each day he rose at 4 a.m. and didn’t go to bed until 10 p.m., allowing only brief periods for meals. Yet he declared, “I have more hours of private retirement than any man in England.”
Our days are like identical suitcases—all the same size. But some pack more into them than others. These are purpose-driven, goal-oriented people—unlike the man whose tombstone read, “When it came time to die, I discovered I had not lived.” So heed this Scripture: “Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity” (vv. 15-16 NIV).

Dealing With Grief – By Dr. Glenn Cummings

I want to share something that I pray will help those who are dealing with the loss of a loved one.
If you’ve ever lost a loved one, you know the aching emptiness of grief. Often the pain is beyond measure – an overwhelming and profound sadness that words can barely begin to describe.  If you’ve walked this dark valley, then I’m sure you can relate to these words from someone who found herself sinking under the pain of bereavement.  “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” (John 11:21) I’m sure those words are familiar to many of you. They were spoken to Jesus by His close friend Martha following the death of her dear brother, Lazarus. And they reveal to us the painful questions of a grieving heart…. “I thought you loved me, Jesus.”   “Why didn’t you do something, Lord?”   “Were you not able to answer my cry for help?”
Perhaps you recognize the cry of your own heart in Martha’s heartfelt plea. If so, then you need to cling to the promises of God that will pour healing balm on your wounds of grief.
Here are two truths to help heal your hurting heart:
First, God understands your pain even when you feel like no one could ever know what you’re going through. As Isaiah 53:3 says, “He was…a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.”
Second, God will hold you firm even when you feel like you’re sinking in the storms of grief. Psalm 46:1 says, “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” Read more…

The Rest of the Story – By Dr. Glenn Cummings

I used to enjoy the radio spots that Paul Harvey had entitled “The Rest of the Story.”  Beginning as a part of his newscasts during the Second World War and then premiering as its own series on the ABC Radio Networks on May 10, 1976, “The Rest of the Story” consisted of stories presented as little-known or forgotten facts on a variety of subjects with some key element of the story (usually the name of some well-known person) held back until the end. The broadcasts always concluded with a variation on the tag line “And now you know the rest of the story.”
Christmas has come and gone for 2018, and how we have been thrilled again at the story of the star, the shepherds and the Savior.  We love to get in our minds the picture of the baby lying in the manger, the shepherds kneeling, the angels singing, and the stars shining.  But the story of Christmas is not the complete story of Jesus.
Most stories have three parts – an introduction, a body, and a conclusion.  The story of Jesus has 3 chapters, with Christmas being the first. The first chapter is about God coming to identify with us in a human body.  Maybe John 1:1 says it best, “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God.”  We must understand that the baby born of the virgin Mary in that lowly stable was none other than God who had come in human flesh.  John 1:14 says “and the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.”