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From the Editor -
Toni Smothers
Hearing God SpeakBe Careful How You Live
By Toni Smothers

"So be careful how you live, not as fools but as those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity for doing good in these evil days. Donít act thoughtlessly, but try to understand what the Lord wants you to do. Donít get drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, let the Holy Spirit fill and control you." (Ephesians 5:15-18 NLT)

Paul contrasts getting drunk with wine, which provides a temporary "high", to being filled with the Spirit, which brings everlasting joy. Today, getting "high" may look different. Thereís always the alcoholic beverage of choice, but now you guys are faced with pot, ecstasy, crack, cocaine, and all other kinds of illicit drugs. But as hard as it can sometimes be, getting "high" has to be part of a former way of life. Unfortunately, many are still trapped by the lure of the drugs and it is still a current way of life for them. That stuff is all about selfish desire and temporary fixes and it is sinful. In Christ, we have a better joy, higher and longer lasting cure to our depression, monotony, or anxiety and nervous energy.

Itís funny, but the world fears the power of the atom, yet we belong to the God of the universe, who not only created that atomic power but also raised Jesus Christ from the dead! Think about it. Godís incomparably great power is available to help you. There is nothing too difficult for Him.

Remember always that the long awaited Messiah has come to break the power of sin and begin Godís personal relationship with his people. You are one of those people. To identify with human beings, Jesus had to endure Satanís temptations too. Although Jesus is God, He is also man. He was human; he was born into the line of Abraham, whom God had chosen to be the father of a great nation, through which the whole world would be blessed. We are blessed because of what Jesus Christ, Abrahamís descendant, did for us.

Being fully human, Jesus was not exempt from Satanís attacks.

Read Complete Article...
A Wisdom Dream
By Toni Smothers

I dreamt that God
came to talk to me.

He asked me why I
didnít contact him more.

I didnít know
exactly what to say.

I took a
stab in the darkÖ

"Maybe I didnít
think you listened."

God smiled. "Iím
listening now."

"Okay, I guess I do
have a few questions.

Why do people yearn
to leave childhood behind?

But, once weíve grown
up, yearn to return?

Or why do we try
to make others love us,

When all we can
do is to love others?

Why canít we learn that
forgiveness feels
better than pride?

Or why do people injure
even loved ones
with cruel words?

Or resist you God,
pretending that
youíre not there?

We live as if
nothing really matters."

God took my hand
in His and said,

"Itís all written
down, Beloved,

Read it sometime
and youíll seeÖ
It all matters."


Hearing God SpeakDyed with Good Colors
By Violet Nesdoly © 2000

"Did you see the top April was wearing?" Twyla asked Clarissa, on the drive home from school.

"Way un-cool! And her hair is just too gross! Itís lucky if it sees a comb once a week!" Clarissa replied. They seemed to both warm up to the insulting comments, as if putting April down was great fun and somehow made them feel better about themselves.

"Probably crawling with cooties," Twyla said, and the girls broke into giggles.

"Whoís April?" little Stephanie asked, from the front seat.

"You donít know who anybody is, do you!" Clarissa replied sharply.

Read Complete Article...

If you would like to accept Godís free offer of salvation, pray this simple prayer and by faith invite Him to fill you with His Spirit:

Dear Father, I need you. I confess that I have sinned against you by living my life as if I actually knew what I was doing. I have made many bad decisions and done many things I am ashamed of. I thank you for forgiving my sins through the blood of your precious son Jesus Christ who died on the cross for me. I now invite Jesus to take His rightful place in my heart as ruler of my life. Fill me with the Holy Spirit. I believe that you love me just as I am and I ask you to teach me how to love you back. Create in me a clean heart as you show me how to live each day for You.