Idols in our hearts

Reading: Exodus 32:1-6

Have you heard this story before?  Did you know that God was so angry with the Israelites for making a golden calf that Moses killed 3,000 men for worshiping that idol (Exodus 32:28)?

Most Americans can’t ever imagine bowing down to a statue the way that the Israelites did.  But people don’t realize that anything can be an idol if it comes before our love for God.  For example, when we are greedy and covetous, that is a form of idolatry (Colossians 3:5).

Do you remember that when the Israelites entered Canaan, God told them to destroy all the people and all their idols?  He did not want any of that to remain.  God knew that idol worship would make the Israelites forget their love for him.  And the same thing can happen to us if we put anything before God.

How to be Happy was written by Lydia Sigourney and published in 1833.  Now out of print, the book is in the public domain and may be read freely online.  The following is an excerpt from one of the chapters.

LOVE YOUR SAVIOR

His character, so beautifully related in the Bible, is worthy of your warmest love. You remember his obedience to his mother, his being subject to her will, even when his wisdom astonished the most learned men of the realm. May you also, my dear children, as you “grow in stature, grow in wisdom, and in favor with God and man.”
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Posted in Bible History, Heart, Holiness/purity, Idols, Loves children, Savior, Worship. Comments Off on Idols in our hearts

Day By Day

Reading: Philippians 4:4-13

Philippians is one of my favorite books in the Bible, and this passage is my favorite one in Philippians.  We are reminded to guard our hearts and fill them with joy.  We’re reminded to be content and to trust in Christ.

Paul was in jail when he wrote these verses.  His faith didn’t become this strong overnight; he practiced it over and over, through all the good and bad moments of his life.  Every step of his day was an important battle for his soul.

Our lives today aren’t filled with the same hardships that Paul endured. Are we spending our days fighting Christ’s battle, or are we too caught up in our daily pleasures and wants?  Are we daily taming our thoughts and emotions, bending them to holiness instead of to sin?  Are we building that peaceful trust in our Master, day by day?

The following story is from Tiger and Tom and Other Stories for Boys.  The book was published in 1910 and is now in the public domain.

THE BOY AND HIS SPARE MOMENTS

A lean, awkward boy came one morning to the door of the principal of a celebrated school, and asked to see him.

The servant eyed his mean clothes, and thinking he looked more like a beggar than anything else, told him to go around to the kitchen.

The boy did as he was bidden, and soon appeared at the back door.

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Posted in Heart, Holiness/purity, Hope. Comments Off on Day By Day

Doing Good

Reading: Luke 6:27-38

The following tale is an excerpt from the story “Metempsychosis.”  This tale can be found in the book, The Wonderful Pocket and Other Stories which was written in 1869 by Chauncey Giles.  Now out of print, the book can be read freely online.  It is an interesting story that encourages young boys and girls to do good to others.

METEMPSYCHOSIS

“O Father!” said little John Clive, “what is the meaning of this long, hard word?”

“What word?” asked his father.

“I cannot pronounce it. It is too long and hard for me,” said John… John brought the book to his father.

“That is metempsychosis.”

“Me-temp-sy-cho-sis,” said John, pronouncing it very slowly. “What a long, hard word! It must have a big meaning, I am sure. But I don’t see what they make such long, hard words for.”

“They make them to express ideas,” said his father.

“Well,” replied John,” metempsychosis must express a bigger idea than I ever had.”

“Very probable,” said his father; “but it contains a very interesting one, nevertheless; and when I have explained it to you, I will tell you a very strange dream I had about it last night.” Read the rest of this entry »

Whole-Hearted Love

Reading: 2 Kings 10:21-31

Jehu the king did many good things for God. However, Jehu had learned how to worship idols just like his father. Jehu never did remove idol worship completely from Israel. He was not “careful to walk in the ways of the Lord with all his heart.” There were things that Jehu allowed his heart to love more than God. Isn’t that sad?

No matter how much good we do, it doesn’t help us if we love other things more than God. There are many good people in the world. But God wants our hearts. If we give God our whole hearts, then goodness will follow. Learn to love God now with your whole heart, while you are young and can choose a godly life. Give Him your heart!

“Only This Once” appeared in Tiger and Tom and Other Stories for Boys. This book of short moral stories for children was published in 1910 and can be read freely online.

ONLY THIS ONCE

“I’ll be in again very soon, mother; I am only going ’round the corner to see the new billiard rooms;” and, cap in hand, Harry was closing the parlor door when his mother called him back.

“I cannot consent to your going there, my dear,” she said; “you must know that both your father and myself disapprove of all such places.” Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Bible History, Courage, Heart, Holiness/purity, Idols, King/Judge, Youth. Comments Off on Whole-Hearted Love

Letting our Lights Shine

Reading: Matthew 5:13-16

Many times when we think of “letting our light shine,” we think of the heroic and miraculous things that people did in the Bible. However, letting our light shine for the Lord doesn’t have to be something majestic or spectacular. It means doing what you can, at every moment, to show others that you belong to Christ. It is the steadfastness of our light that Christ sees, not how far it reaches or the praise we receive about it.

“Helping Fingers” was written by Bruce S. Wright and published in The Children’s Six Minutes in 1922. Now out of print, the book may be read freely online.

HELPING FINGERS

For three years I lived in Manila, Philippine Islands. Not far from my home was an orphanage for children who were deaf … Read the rest of this entry »

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The Beattitudes

Reading: Matthew 5: 1-12

How to Be Happy was written by Lydia Sigourney and published in 1833. It is now out of print but may be read freely online.

LOVE ALL MANKIND

It is easy to love the good. It is pleasant to love those who love us. It is possible to be kind to others, even if they are not kind to us. But we should try to love all human beings, because our Father in Heaven made them. They are his family. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Anger, Heart, Humility/Pride, Jealousy, Joy, Kindness. Comments Off on The Beattitudes

Boast in These Things

Reading: Jeremiah 9:23-24

What are the things which delight you? Delight means happiness. What are the things which make you happy?

What are the things which make your parents happy? Do you like to see your parents delighted in you? Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Benevolence, Family, Heart, Humility/Pride, Kindness, Loves children, Talents, Work, Youth. Comments Off on Boast in These Things