So what about Jesus’ family?

  1. Here in the Urbanova congregation this is the month of the family, for our messages. Last Sunday, on that first couple to be created. Today, the roles of husband and wife.

  2. So that people don’t freak out, on the 23rd, we’ll talk about Jesus’ physical family. What should I say about them?

  3. Much font search and experimentation today. That ought to do me for the rest of the year.

  4. What is our life but a vapor, but a vain attempt to drive down a stake to hold us here, when every connection to earth will soon be broken?

  5. Heaven and earth and hell are in the hands of God, and every creature, man himself and all his plans and dreams.

  6. An original verse: The name of man and all his fine devices / Avail him nothing, neither his sacrifices.

  7. A Bible verse: “Then I confessed my sin; I no longer covered up my wrongdoing. I said, ‘I will confess my rebellious acts to the Lord.’ And then you forgave my sins” Psa 32.5.

7P: False word from God

1. Got the Bible lesson for tonight at the gym printed out with fill-in-the-blanks. People seem to like that. Not my style, but if it works for most, go with it.

2. Need to get the blinds up for my office window. Afternoon sun makes it almost impossible to work.

3. Hard to find stuff after the cleaning lady rearranges my office. I spent no little time looking for books that had been on my desk. Now …

4. Time to pull out another box or two of books from the containers. Getting slow on putting them on the shelves.

5. The reason the old prophet from Bethel told the young man of God he had a message from the Lord was selfish. (See 1 Kings 13.) People make up divine communications because it’s about them.

6. An original verse: God gives his order, waits for man to obey; / In matters of faith the obedient has no say.

7. A Bible verse: “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful” Lk 6.36.

Old disappointments

1. Mondays are good days, but the energy level sometimes drags.

2. A good group assembled last night, and the lesson on the first family (Adam and Eve, not the US prez and wife) was well received.

3. The logic that says since God is one, all paths lead to him, is deeply flawed. Better this: God is one, and the path to him is also one—in Jesus Christ.

4. Two Christmas parties this week, one Friday night at a restaurant, the other a big barbecue on Saturday. Does anybody fast for the holidays?

5. Ever get a hankering to watch an old Perry Mason show? Were you disappointed afterwards? Most old shows do.

6. An original verse: A wealth of options makes decisions hard, / To get the choices right there’s more to discard.

7. “The Lord of Heaven’s Armies will be exalted when he punishes, the holy God’s authority will be recognized when he judges” Isaiah 5.16.

Three going on four

  1. Ammo Girl wrote, “I wouldn’t go back to high school for a billion trillion dollars.” I agree.

  2. KFC is now in SJC. Never was a favorite place of mine, and even less so for being in a mall. Missus wanted to try it out tonight. Done.

  3. Three good, solid days of work and writing. Can tomorrow be four?

  4. Much rain. Reservoirs ought to be full. I don’t mind the cooler temps that come with it.

  5. Book of a few of this year’s outlines of lessons and studies topped 60 pages today. I started this sometime in the second semester.

  6. An original verse: Addiction binds the body and soul, / The empty eye can never be full.

  7. A Bible verse: “The one who covers his transgressions will not prosper, but whoever confesses them and forsakes them will find mercy” Prov 28.13.

Simplest music

  1. Does age increase injuries to muscles? Asking for a friend.

  2. Started to ask a friend about what his writing plans were for 2019, if he was going to make any changes. Then I thought: I need to start making plans.

  3. Has weather ever been dependable? Beginning to have my doubts. Our memory of it probably isn’t accurate. Nor weatherman’s measurements.

  4. Finally got out a new UPLift email to subscribers today. Have you signed up?

  5. What is the simplest music that might be edifying to God’s saints? Much of our hymnology is hard for people to learn.

  6. An original verse: Lowliness will shrink the ego’s size; / The Lord exalts the man of humble eyes.

  7. A Bible verse: “O Lord, my heart is not proud, nor do I have a haughty look. I do not have great aspirations, or concern myself with things that are beyond me” Psa 131.1.

7P: True love serves

  1. Eddie Lawson’s evangelistic sheet turned up recently while moving papers to the home office. Thinking how to translate it into Portuguese and format it for use.

  2. A second box of books has been removed from the carport containers and contents distributed on the shelves.

  3. I mentioned Covey’s 8th habit of finding your voice recently and a friend enthusiastically picked it up. Now to read the book.

  4. Service to God permeates everything, everywhere: home, office, school, streets, gym. I see people doing it.

  5. In a word, true love serves and builds up the other person. That’s the point of 1 Cor 13.

  6. An original verse: Movement is life, the struggle to be free, / Unless it’s a falling rock, from gravity.

  7. A Bible verse: “Because you have turned away from the Lord, the Lord will not be with you” Num 14.43.

7P: Long week with many blessings

  1. Has been a long week. Many blessings perceived in the midst of hard times.

  2. Hard times can bring you together or pull you apart. Which do you want them to do?

  3. Bible reading last night (10 to 10.30 pm!) at the gym focused on Psalm 1. Good text for non-Christians.

  4. Brazil turned Black Friday, in many businesses, into Black Week and Black November. No White Christmas here, so …

  5. Study late, study early. Tomorrow, at 6.30 am, with neighbor. We’re working on the covenants.

  6. Original verse: Where’s that special niche for me, / And what is my own voice? / To find and use my gifts from God / Will cause me to rejoice.

  7. A Bible verse: “… the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins” Mk 2.10.

7P: Pick up the pace

  1. Wife had rapid heartbeat last night and again this morning. The spell has passed but she feels weak. Please pray for her.
  2. New issue of mag coming along with theme on “total dedication.” If you have an article on it, still might be room, dunno.
  3. Needing to pick up the pace on Prof. Horner’s Bible reading plan.
  4. Also pace pick-up needed on getting those books out of the containers and on to the shelves.
  5. Come kick the tires on this social-media spot, open source, might be what you’re looking for. I’m here.
  6. An original verse: Fallen leaves and empty limbs, / Life stripped away to barest soul.
  7. A Bible verse: “but we speak God’s wisdom in a mystery, the wisdom once hidden [from man, but now revealed to us by God, that wisdom] which God predestined before the ages to our glory [to lift us into the glory of His presence]” 1 Cor 2.7 AMP.

7P: One of the gravest sins of all

  1. One website lists hundreds of sins mentioned in the Bible. One is refusal to be baptized, Lk 7.29-30. I know some people committing that sin.

  2. When a good deed turns out not so good? Just keep going forward.

  3. The abstract mind struggles to get specific. God’s Word helps greatly with that problem, among so many others.

  4. The brotherhood, in some places, is now into titles and degrees. They are flaunted to impress. Before long, insistence on calling them doctors and reverends will follow.

  5. Ladder to new home office was just installed this morning. Now to move in my books from the old office.

  6. An original verse: Work with joy, and give the task your best; / At day’s end, you can truly rest.

  7. A Bible verse: “The Lord stands aloof from the wicked, but he listens to the prayer of the righteous” Prov 15.29 REB.

7P: Lunch with a guest

  1. Went to meet with the saints in Eugênio de Melo (the other congregation in town) this morning, preached at their invitation. Good to see some old friends. Attendance was down. Did they hear I was coming?

  2. We had lunch at Empório Ancheita and invited José Roberto along, since we were taking him home.

  3. Much cooler today than normal. Not complaining. Cool is me.

  4. Sore in the lower back today from exercises yesterday morning at the gym. Case of the old gray mare?

  5. Bought a book lately? Try this one: Choose! Easy to read, challenging to practice.

  6. A verse of mine: Pounding drums from a distance, / The party invades our privacy, / No one knows or cares, / Gone the spirit of civility.

  7. A Bible verse: “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, sure and steadfast, which reaches inside behind the curtain, where Jesus our forerunner entered on our behalf, since he became a priest forever in the order of Melchizedek” Heb 6.19-20.