I AM – Devotional Style Short Stories – “The Spirit’s Alive”

Cars line to enter the already packed parking lot. The sun is bright and hot but it has not detoured the saints from coming. People are already standing at the doors waiting to enter the sanctuary and the women fan themselves as the men wipe sweat from their brow.

Music can be heard sifting through the rafters and seeping through the walls. The vibration can almost be felt in their feet as the excitement grows and suddenly the doors are thrown open and thousands rush to find a seat.

The music reverberates through the room and hands have already started to clap, bodies are dancing between the rows of seats, and others are doing little jigs as they walk down the aisles.

The music softens just a bit and through the loud speakers, as stragglers search for a seat, a voice roars, “Are you ready to worship the Lord?” The crowd roars, “Yes,” and the drums, guitars, and key board roars over the crowd.

Praise songs are sung, the music is ear-bursting loud, but nobody complains as they dance at their seats, raise their hands high in the air, and give the Lord their praises through the words of the songs.

The Man isn’t seen but He’s watching and listening.

The devil runs as the room is filled with His glory.

The drums quiet, the keyboard softens, and the voices fill the room in hushed reverence. Tears are filling eyes, heads are bowed, and the sound of “Holy is our Lord God Almighty,” is being sung softly.

A Wind blows across the room and suddenly the heavens are opened. Standing before the King is a choir of thousands and their voices are joining with the saints in this room.

Shekinah glory fills the room. Heavenly light flows through the room and some fall under the Power, they cannot stand, and yet they worship.

As the song ends, Jehovah Elyon’s eyes fill with tears of love and joy.

He has been magnified.

***

Psalm 34:3 – “O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together.”

***

When we magnify the Lord we are coming before Him and exalting who He is. We are glorifying His Name, we are honoring God Almighty and what He does. We are giving praise unto the King of kings and Lord of lords. No human can die for another and be saved and yet the Son of God chose to die so that our sins are forgiven and we have eternal life with Him in His heavenly kingdom. Have you asked the Lord Jesus to forgive you of your sins? Do you magnify Him through your thoughts, words, and actions? Magnify Him today through prayers of praise and songs of worship. Show your gratitude and love for He died that you may have life everlasting with Him.

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I AM -Devotional Style Short Stories – “The Game”

 

A pick-up truck pulls up and parks near the fence. A moment passes and three more pickup trucks pull up and park beside the first one. Close behind a car speeds across the gravel and slides to a stop. More cars and trucks arrive and before long the parking area is almost full.

Suddenly screaming kids are throwing open vehicle doors and running toward the fence. They gather together and are talking and laughing. One throws a ball to another. These little guys are decked out in their little blue and white uniforms with “Fireballs” stamped across the front and their name, in large letters, on the back.

They’re fired up and ready to play ball. They stand together and wait for the Coach to arrive while their parents take seats on the bleachers and chat with one another. A mother stares worriedly at her young son. He’s just joined the team after crying and begging to play with the other players. She argued for days with her husband that he’d be hurt, but finally gave in.

Little Sammy is strutting about the other boys slamming his fist into the mitt that is much too large for his small hand, just like his Dad does. Mom has to grin and then laughs out loud when the glove flies off his hand when he “takes the stance” and tries to sock the mitt harder.

Suddenly a truck pulls up and the Coach steps out. The kids roar and run to Him for their assigned positions. He greets each one joyfully and tussles each head of hair and tells each what position they are to play and the game starts.

“Strike one!” The Ref. yells. The crowd groans.

“Strike two!

“That was a good ball! You’re nuts, Ref!” A Dad yells from the stands.

“Strike three!” The Ref yells throwing his arm in the air.

The boy quickly glances up to the stands at his father as his father swears under his breath and throws his soda can down on the ground angrily.

The ball game continues and after the last inning all the boys run to the Coach laughing and yelling. They’ve had so much fun and in their joy and excitement the Coach finds Himself on the ground laughing with a bunch of little boys piled on top of Him.

***

Luke 18:16 – “But Jesus called the children to him and said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.”

***

A child’s laughter is infectious. The joy that bubbles up from within a child touches God’s heart like no other. Watching small children at play can be medicine for our soul. To see a group of youngsters having fun and being the child God created them to be is a blessing to all who watch – except some adults. Too many times there are some parents that press their distorted values onto their children. Dad wanted to be a great ball player and by hell or high water his son will be, whether he wants to be or not! How sad that some press their desires, live their lives, through their child. Let us look within and see what it is that we are doing to our offspring. Are we living a lost childhood through them or allowing their God-given talents, gifts, and innocence to be expressed in their play? Children are God’s gifts. Give them to Him and watch their joy spring forth.

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I AM – Devotional Style Short Stories – “A Jesus Encounter”

A Jesus Encounter

Entering the wide glass doors brings the woman into a whole new environment. The entrance is clean and friendly and glancing around one can see a modern, well-kept facility.

A long hall meanders off to one side of a large living space with comfortable chairs and couches. Another long hall winds toward a sitting around where games and Television can be enjoyed. Each hall is lined with doors and each door has a name and picture of the one who occupies the space behind the door.

Walking briskly down one hall the woman gently knocks on the door hoping she isn’t disturbing the occupant of the room. “Come in” is softly heard through the door. She opens the door slowly and steps inside.

Sitting in a recliner is an aged woman. Her smile lights the room as she enthusiastically greets her visitor, the one she calls her angel. The elderly woman stands with outstretched arms, “Give me a hug,” she states and her arms enfold her visitor.

Taking a seat they chat. The visitor can’t help but love this woman even though they have only been acquainted a few months. When she looks at her she sees Christ within her. Her soft-spoken, loving voice is like a soft melody floating through the air. Her graciousness and love for Christ is so evident it almost brings tears to her visitor.

So often we read in God’s Word how we are to love our neighbors as ourselves. This woman seems to love everyone, regardless of their physical or mental health. Each visitor is welcomed with love.

She speaks kindly of those in the community she now lives in. Her laughter is joyous, and although her eyes don’t always sparkle His light shines through them.

The visitor rises to leave after their short visit. She doesn’t want to tire her precious friend. Hugs are in order again as the elderly woman takes hold of her walker and walks her visitor to the door.

As the woman slowly walks down the long hallway toward the entrance of the Assisted Living and Memory Care Home she thinks, I have just encountered Jesus.

~~~~

Matthew 5:16 -“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”

~~~~

We have all met people of all walks of life and there are few that we know of their life stories. We often wonder what is in the heart of those with the sour expressions, the harsh words, and seem to be angry just for breathing. There are others we meet that seem to shine. Their faces are aglow and their smiles infectious, and their joy seems to just bubble up. Then there are those that are somewhere in between. We call those, “Normal,” or maybe even “Christian.” For those of us that have had the absolute pleasure of meeting someone that shines the light of Christ in what seems to be all they do and say, we are truly blessed. The Lord has said in His word to let His light shine through us. We don’t necessarily have to say a word and people can see His light within us. Our goal must be to let our words be His words, our love of others like His love for us and  our behavior as His. Our hope should be that when others encounter us they will see Christ in us and walk away thinking, “I have just seen Jesus.”

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The Narrow Road – True Story

Running along the trail, his footfalls resound upward and leave a deep resounding thump, thump. thump like a drum beat in a cave. The birds stop their singing and take flight as he lifts his head and screams, “Why God? Why?”

Suddenly dropping to his knees, his fingers dig into the damp soft ground and sobs rip through him from a heart that seems to have shattered into a million pieces. Peering from beneath a nearby bush, a rabbit sits twitching his nose with big brown eyes watching Brian. Brain is unaware as wet leaves soak his jeans.

Feeling exasperation and anger, he flings his arms heavenward with shaking, clenched fists. He yells to God, “How can you love me? You can’t when you let this happen!” Falling face down, Brian sobs into his folded arms. The still of the forest absorbs his cries.

The rabbit has scampered to safety and the birds have taken flight as Brian lies on the cold damp ground confused, frustrated, heartbroken, and doubting how God could ever love him.

 

“This book should be on the New York Best Seller lists.” Robert Filosi

“I have laughed and I have cried. I absolutely love this book!” Nell Dale

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Answered Prayer

Snow fills the valleys. Trees are laden with the white fluffiness of their intruders. Branches sag under the weight. A Cardinal, dressed in his bright red suit, sits on a snow-covered branch and chirps out his song for all to hear.

Nearby, a rabbit sticks his small black nose out from under a snow laden bush and peers out. Seeing nothing of danger he cautiously steps out onto the snow and hops a few feet, then stops. Leaving small prints in the white covering he ventures a little farther.

In the distance, A Man walks briskly while having to maneuver the large snow shoes his feet are anchored to. His heavy coat is buttoned tightly and His fur hat has sprinkles of snow embedded in the fur. His beard is dusted with white flakes.

What the rabbit doesn’t see is several yards behind the bush he was hiding in is a woman lying in the cold snow. She has been walking to get help when her car broke down  a mile back on the snow-covered road.

Her last words, before collapsing into darkness, “Jesus, help me.”

The Man kneels down beside her.

She’s unaware.

He places His hand over her heart.

It isn’t beating.

He looks heavenward and says a few words in Hebrew. The thump, thump, thump within her chest suddenly rings loud and clear.

When she opens her eyes, she finds herself safely within her car. The motor is running and heat has filled the car. Through the radio speakers the soft words, “Love lifted me, Love lifted me” are being sung.

She blinks several times, looks around, and wonders if she has had  a miraculous encounter with the King of kings and Lord of lords.

(Sue’s version) Psalm 17:6, 102:17

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The Unexpected Guest

Two children lie flat on their backs in the back yard of their home on the lush green grass. The sky is a beautiful blue with a few puffy clouds lingering about just to entice the children to try to guess what they look like.

Mom has given each a small sack with peanuts so they’ll have a snack while guessing what each cloud looks like. She watches out the kitchen window and chuckles when Timmy yells, “I see a rabbit!”

Sissy looks intently at the cloud her brother is pointing to and excitedly yells, “I see it, too.”

Mom turns from the window with a smile and a chuckle and thinks, “I wish you were here, Honey, to see this.” Her husband had gone to be with the Lord a few months before. Tears fill her eyes thinking of him.

The doorbell rings. Mom quickly dries her hands and places the dish towel on the counter, and goes to the door. A Man stands on the front porch. She’s never met this man before and cautiously asks, “Can I help you?”

“I am the I Am and I’m here to tell you that your husband, James, is so very happy.”

“What? Who did you say you are?” Mom demands as anger flares up at the thought that this is some sort of sick joke.

“I am the I Am. May I come in?”

Unexpected peace suddenly flows through her and she opens the screen door and steps back to allow the Man entry. She offers him a seat and some ice tea but He declines the tea and takes a seat in the chair across from the couch.

They chat for a little while and He tells her that her worries are taken care of. She need not worry that she’ll lose her home or the children will not have enough to eat or the bills won’t be paid.

By the end of the conversation Mom has tears streaming down her cheeks and can’t seem to thank the Man enough.

“May I hug you?” she asks as they stand near the door when He’s ready to leave.

“Of course,” The Man replies and as she hugs Him tight, He whispers in her ear. “I will take care you. I love you very much.”

Then He leaves.

(Sue’s version) Psalm 68:5

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