DayBreaks for 4/30/14 – The Moment of Recognition

DayBreaks for 4/30/14 – The Moment of Recognition

In the Greek myth The Odyssey we read the epic of Odysseus. Odysseus was the mighty warrior who fought in the Trojan War, but according to legend, his journey home after that war was interrupted for many years as the gods had decided to test his true mettle through a series of trials. His journeys carried him far and wide as he encountered mythic beasts and lands, many of which have passed into common parlance: the Cyclops, the Procrustean bed, Scylla and Charybdis, the sirens’ voices.

Meanwhile, back at his home, Odysseus’ wife and family presume he must have died en route back from Troy. Finally, however, the gods released Odysseus and he arrives home. Instead of simply walking through the front door and crying out the Greek equivalent of, “Honey, I’m home!” Odysseus decides he wants to determine if anything has changed during his absence. Did his wife still love him? Had she been faithful? In order to find out, Odysseus disguises himself so he looks like a stranger needing temporary lodging.

The housekeeper, Euryclea, welcomes the apparent traveler and performs for him the then-standard practice of foot-washing. As she does so, Euryclea regales the stranger with stories about her long-lost master, Odysseus, whom she had also served as a nurse when he was young. She tells the traveler about how long her master has been gone and she noted that by then Odysseus would be about the same age and build as the man whose feet she was washing. When Odysseus had been a young boy, he was once gored by a wild boar, leaving a nasty scar on his leg. As Euryclea went about washing his feet, suddenly her hand brushed against that old scar and instantly her eyes were opened and she recognized, with great joy, her beloved friend and master!

Recognition scenes like that have long exercised a strong effect on our hearts. Sometimes it is used for comedic effect, as in many episodes of the old I Love Lucy show when Lucy would disguise herself so as to worm her way into one of her husband, Rickie’s, shows. Jesus seems to have engaged in a similar recognition scene when he walked the road to Emmaus and met Mary in the garden after the resurrection. 

The moment of recognition is sheer delight. We shall be seen by Him, and we shall know Him – and He will know us!  The anticipation is almost too much to bear as we await that moment.

PRAYER: Thank you, Jesus, for knowing us and claiming us as your very own! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2014 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

To subscribe to DayBreaks, use this link: https://daybreaksdevotions.wordpress.com and click on the Subscribe button at the right of the page.  If you wish to unsubscribe, at the bottom of each email you receive about DayBreaks, you should find an “Unsubscribe” ink at the bottom of the email.

NOTE: Galen is a missionary with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI) and raises his own support.  DayBreaks is free – and will remain so – but if you wish to help Galen in his ministry work, you can donate on his behalf.  Donations (one-time or recurring) may be made by going to this link: http://www.medicalambassadors.org/donate.html. Look down the left side of the page until you find the SUPPORT MISSIONARIES section then click on “Galen Dalrymple” and you’ll be taken to PayPal where you can make your donation.  If you prefer to donate via check, you may do so by writing your check payable to Medical Ambassadors International and put S090 in the “memo” field. Mail the check to Medical Ambassadors International, P.O. Box 1302, Salida, CA 95368.  All donations are tax deductible as MAI is a 501.c.3 organization certified with both the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability and Guidestar.

Thank you!

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DayBreaks for 4/29/14 – Not a Single Miracle

DayBreaks for 4/29/14 – Not a Single Miracle

Miracles.  They are the stuff of Bible stories and wonder, are they not?  There are those who dismiss them outright as being preposterous, and even some Christian theologians do so, much to my chagrin.  But, don’t we have to admit that miracles, by definition, strain the rules of the universe and nature and make us not just amazed but puzzled and wondering?  I mean, walking on water is not something that I’ve ever seen anyone demonstrate.  Calming the storm, turning water into wine..those just don’t happen…at least not usually.  I have never been witness to someone rising from the dead, or who was blind since birth being given sight by someone rubbing muddy spittle on their eyes.  Maybe you have…but me?  Not.

Miracles.  I believe in them.  I know people who desperately pray for them and expect them. Perhaps that’s why I’ve not seen them…I may not expect to.  I have faith in God’s power to do a miracle whenever and wherever it suits His purposes…and not to do them at my request.

There are those that don’t receive the miraculous answer they pray for.  Let’s face it: if God granted every request for a miraculous healing, would anyone ever have died on the face of this earth?  (There may be a few, but most who are loved and cherished have someone beg God to heal them as they lay on their sick bed or death bed.)  Does that mean that there isn’t enough faith in the requestor?  No.  Does it mean there’s not enough power in the God they pray to?  No.

Do you realize that in the entire story of David, the man after God’s own heart, that there is not even one single miracle?!  Does that mean that God was not in the story of David, or that God was uninvolved in the life of the man after His own heart?  Absolutely not.  God was at the center of every plot twist, every event and in every detail of David’s life, but He was usually silent and seemed to be hidden based on many of David’s psalms of lament and complaint.

Why?  As Eugene Peterson said in his book about David, Leap Over a Wall, the story of David is the story of everyman.  It is a story that doesn’t go outside the bounds of the ordinary, the everyday life of a perfectly flawed human being.  God didn’t do a miracle for David from the outside, but He did from the inside – patiently, steadily, and in secret.  Why not miracle we could see?  Perhaps it is because we needed to see someone just like us – alternatingly prideful yet humble, arrogant but meek, driven by passions and impulsive…a human full of flaws who was forced to come to grips with faith and life and God without miracles.  In short, it is because we needed to see that it is possible for every person to wear the description: a person after God’s own heart.

Miracles?  You don’t need it.  David didn’t.  If God wants you to have a miracle, you will see it.  But just because you don’t get one doesn’t mean your faith is weak or that you don’t matter to God.  You do!  

PRAYER: Thank you, Father, for your wisdom in how you treat us and change us miraculously from within! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2014 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

To subscribe to DayBreaks, use this link: https://daybreaksdevotions.wordpress.com and click on the Subscribe button at the right of the page.  If you wish to unsubscribe, at the bottom of each email you receive about DayBreaks, you should find an “Unsubscribe” ink at the bottom of the email.

NOTE: Galen is a missionary with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI) and raises his own support.  DayBreaks is free – and will remain so – but if you wish to help Galen in his ministry work, you can donate on his behalf.  Donations (one-time or recurring) may be made by going to this link: http://www.medicalambassadors.org/donate.html. Look down the left side of the page until you find the SUPPORT MISSIONARIES section then click on “Galen Dalrymple” and you’ll be taken to PayPal where you can make your donation.  If you prefer to donate via check, you may do so by writing your check payable to Medical Ambassadors International and put S090 in the “memo” field. Mail the check to Medical Ambassadors International, P.O. Box 1302, Salida, CA 95368.  All donations are tax deductible as MAI is a 501.c.3 organization certified with both the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability and Guidestar.

Thank you!

DayBreaks for 4/28/14 – The Minimizing “Just”

DayBreaks for 4/28/14 – The Minimizing Just

“I’m just an ordinary guy/gal.”  “You’re just an employee!”  “You just have a high school education.”

“Just” is one of those words, like “but”….and you know when you hear it that nothing good will follow.  It is a way to minimize something or someone else by comparison.  On the examples above, the person who is saying those things is implying that the person they are speaking to probably can’t do much or will never amount to much.

David was a prime example.  Oh, sure, by the time that his life ended, he had become a king – and a pretty good one, too.  But, when Samuel came (at God’s direction) to anoint a king from among the sons of Jesse, David wasn’t even invited to the selection process.  Why should he be?  He was the youngest and runtiest of all of Jesse’s sons – and he was just a shepherd boy.  That’s how people saw him. 

But it wasn’t how God saw David – or the rest of Israel.  In Exodus 19:6, God declares of David’s ancestors, “You shall be to me a kingdom of priests…”  That would have shocked them at the time.  They’d been in Egypt for 400 years – and in Egypt, the priests held the power, controlled the rituals and ran most of the affairs of the nation from their temples along the Nile.  No one would have dared said, “You’re just a priest!” 

Yet, it is what God decreed.  They were to have priests (the Levites), but they were all to BE priests, too.  They were priests who didn’t wear robes, who had no temples and little to no training…but they were priests, nonetheless.

But how about you?  Do you realize that Christians are given the same identity?  Once we were freed from our sin, Jesus not only made us holy and righteous, but priests as well (1 Pet. 2:5, 9; Rev. 1:6; 5:10; 20:6). 

People who see you may think you aren’t much…they may say that you are “just” this or that.  They can’t see the identity you have in Christ as a priest given the great privilege of representing the God of creation to mankind and to present mankind to God.  This is the most important “job” that has ever been held by a human being. 

Don’t let anyone tell you that you will never amount to much because you’re just too insignificant.  Remember your identity.  You are a priest of the Almighty God.  And you are also His son or daughter.  THAT is your identity.  THAT is your reality.  Some day everyone will see it.  Until then, fulfill your role – embrace the truth about yourself as God sees you!

PRAYER: Even in our flesh, You have given us significance and great value!  May we remember our true identity is how You see us and what You have declared to be true of us! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2014 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

To subscribe to DayBreaks, use this link: https://daybreaksdevotions.wordpress.com and click on the Subscribe button at the right of the page.  If you wish to unsubscribe, at the bottom of each email you receive about DayBreaks, you should find an “Unsubscribe” ink at the bottom of the email.

NOTE: Galen is a missionary with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI) and raises his own support.  DayBreaks is free – and will remain so – but if you wish to help Galen in his ministry work, you can donate on his behalf.  Donations (one-time or recurring) may be made by going to this link: http://www.medicalambassadors.org/donate.html. Look down the left side of the page until you find the SUPPORT MISSIONARIES section then click on “Galen Dalrymple” and you’ll be taken to PayPal where you can make your donation.  If you prefer to donate via check, you may do so by writing your check payable to Medical Ambassadors International and put S090 in the “memo” field. Mail the check to Medical Ambassadors International, P.O. Box 1302, Salida, CA 95368.  All donations are tax deductible as MAI is a 501.c.3 organization certified with both the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability and Guidestar.

Thank you!

DayBreaks for 4/25/14 – He Still Does!

DayBreaks for 4/25/14 – He Still Does!

I have good news for you: God has a resurrection for you! He wants to bring you out into the light again. He wants to bring you out of that tomb of oppression and give you a new start. And listen! He has the power to do it. He can bring you back to life.

This powerful story in John 11 speaks to this. Remember it with me. Mary and Martha who live in Bethany are some of Jesus’ closest friends… They send word to him that their brother, whose name is Lazarus, is desperately ill. “Please come. We need your help. Hurry. He is sinking fast.” But by the time Jesus gets there, Lazarus has died… and has been in his grave for four days. Mary and Martha come out to meet Jesus and they express their grief: “He’s gone. We’ve lost him. O Lord, if only you have been here, our brother would not have died.”

The family and friends have gathered and in their deep sorrow, they begin to weep over the loss of their loved one, Lazarus. The heart of Jesus goes out to them… and Jesus weeps with them. He loved Lazarus, too… and he loves them… and he shares their pain. Jesus goes out to the cave-like tomb and he says to them: “Roll back the stone!” Martha, always the realist and ever ready to speak out, protests: “But Lord, we can’t do that. He has been in the grave for 4 days. By now there will be a terrible odor.” Jesus says to her: “Martha, only believe and you will see the power of God.”

So they roll the stone away… and Jesus cries out in a loud voice: “Lazarus, come forth!” And incredibly, miraculously, amazingly, before their very eyes… Lazarus is resurrected! He comes out of the tomb. He still has on his grave clothes. His head and feet are still wrapped with mummy-like bandages. Jesus then turns to the friends and family and says to them, “Unbind him and let him go. Unwrap him and set him free.”

In this graphic and dramatic story, three awesome lessons jump out at us. Three great truths emerge which can be so helpful to us today. Let me list them for us: Jesus wept with those he loved and he still does. Jesus raised people up and he still does. Jesus included others in the healing process… and he still does…

PRAYER: Thank you now for all the resurrections you’ve performed in my life, Lord, and for the ultimate resurrection that you have yet to perform for me!  Thank you that you still are the Almighty God who never grows weary! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2014 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

To subscribe to DayBreaks, use this link: https://daybreaksdevotions.wordpress.com and click on the Subscribe button at the right of the page.  If you wish to unsubscribe, at the bottom of each email you receive about DayBreaks, you should find an “Unsubscribe” ink at the bottom of the email.

NOTE: Galen is a missionary with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI) and raises his own support.  DayBreaks is free – and will remain so – but if you wish to help Galen in his ministry work, you can donate on his behalf.  Donations (one-time or recurring) may be made by going to this link: http://www.medicalambassadors.org/donate.html. Look down the left side of the page until you find the SUPPORT MISSIONARIES section then click on “Galen Dalrymple” and you’ll be taken to PayPal where you can make your donation.  If you prefer to donate via check, you may do so by writing your check payable to Medical Ambassadors International and put S090 in the “memo” field. Mail the check to Medical Ambassadors International, P.O. Box 1302, Salida, CA 95368.  All donations are tax deductible as MAI is a 501.c.3 organization certified with both the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability and Guidestar.

Thank you!

DayBreaks for 4/24/14 – Pandora and Hope

DayBreaks for 4/24/14 – Pandora and Hope

Some days it is easier to have hope than others, isn’t it? 

Recently, the story of Malaysian Airlines flight 370 has captured vast amounts of time on the airwaves, in print and in the hearts and minds of people throughout the world.  I have found it very compelling myself, reading nearly everything I can get my hands on about it…even when those things are contradictory or proven to be flat out incorrect.  But you know what touched me perhaps more than anything?  It was that the family members and loved ones of those who were on the missing flight keep holding out hope that perhaps, somewhere in the Indian Ocean, there is a life boat with their relative on it awaiting rescue.  Alexander Pope famously put it this way: “Hope springs eternal in the human breast.” 

It seems that no matter how bad the circumstances, we always hope for the best – thinking that better things will come down the road. We want to believe, and cling to the hope that, no matter how bad things have been, they can always get better.

The reality is that, if we figure to survive in this world, we had better have hope. The ancients knew that. Do you remember Pandora? Mythology has her as a lady endowed with every charm…the gift of all the gods. She was sent to earth with a little box which she had been forbidden to open, but curiosity finally got the better of her…she lifted the lid and out from that box escaped every conceivable kind of terror. Pandora made haste to close the box up again, but it was too late. There was only one thing left…HOPE. That was the ancients’ way of saying how important hope is. Even when all else is lost, there is still hope.

It was hope that had sustained the Israelite faithful from generation to generation. This was what energized the crowd along Jesus’ parade route on Palm Sunday…the hope that this was the long awaited Messiah.  And it is hope that has sustained believers in Christ ever since his resurrection and ascension.  We DO believe that the best is to come….we hope for it, we long for it.  We watch for His return and for the full and complete exercise of His unlimited power.

There is a difference between wishful thinking and hope.  Wishful thinking is for those who have no Lord and Master who can speak the cosmos into existence.  Hope is for those who know His words are true!

Romans 5:5 (NIV)  And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.     

PRAYER: Thank you for the hope you have put into our hearts by your Spirit and the love that assures us of our ultimate deliverance and delight! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2014 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

To subscribe to DayBreaks, use this link: https://daybreaksdevotions.wordpress.com and click on the Subscribe button at the right of the page.  If you wish to unsubscribe, at the bottom of each email you receive about DayBreaks, you should find an “Unsubscribe” ink at the bottom of the email.

NOTE: Galen is a missionary with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI) and raises his own support.  DayBreaks is free – and will remain so – but if you wish to help Galen in his ministry work, you can donate on his behalf.  Donations (one-time or recurring) may be made by going to this link: http://www.medicalambassadors.org/donate.html. Look down the left side of the page until you find the SUPPORT MISSIONARIES section then click on “Galen Dalrymple” and you’ll be taken to PayPal where you can make your donation.  If you prefer to donate via check, you may do so by writing your check payable to Medical Ambassadors International and put S090 in the “memo” field. Mail the check to Medical Ambassadors International, P.O. Box 1302, Salida, CA 95368.  All donations are tax deductible as MAI is a 501.c.3 organization certified with both the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability and Guidestar.

Thank you!

DayBreaks for 4/23/14 – The Offensive Jesus

DayBreaks for 4/23/14 – The Offensive Jesus

Matthew 13:55-57 (KJV) – Is not this the carpenter’s son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas? 56  And his sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all these things? 57  And they were offended in him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house.

In his book, The Freedom Revolution and the Churches, Robert Spike recalls an incident from the early years of the turbulent civil rights movement. Flying out of Jackson, Mississippi, Spike overheard the conversation of a Catholic sister, sitting across the aisle from him, with her seat companion. The sister was lamenting all the unrest in Mississippi, and she complained about the “outside agitators,” the students and church leaders who had come to her state in support of civil rights, certain that their presence was provoking violence on the part of white racists. “I do not question their dedication, nor even the rightness of their position,” said the sister. “But surely it is a bad thing to create turmoil by stirring up people who feel differently.” As the sister talks, all the while she is nervously fingering a cross hanging around her neck.

There’s a tragic irony in the sister’s words and actions, not unlike that of the very first Holy Week. For the one whose cross the sister holds most dear, Jesus, would never have taken the risk of going to Jerusalem and proclaiming a new way of living, would never have confronted comfortable patterns and ultimately endured the cross, had he followed the sister’s philosophy.

Jesus created turmoil.  Sometimes turmoil is the fertile soil in which positive change and truth can take root.  It seems that his true followers create turmoil, too…not in blatantly offensive ways, but just by the proclamation of the Truth that called himself a “stumbling block”.

When you stop to think about it, who did Jesus not offend during his life?  He offended the religious.  He offended his mother and brothers when he refused to see them.  He offended kings and procurators.  About the only people who weren’t offended by him were those who were broken…and knew they were broken.  Sinners found him incredibly appealing because in him they found love and mercy and forgiveness.  He loves the broken hearted, but offends nearly everyone else.

Sometimes I think that we are too eager to please everyone and afraid of “offending” anyone.  Truth often hurts…especially when it is truth about ourselves. 

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, if I need to be offended by the truth you have to show me, please proceed!  Help me to be more concerned about those in danger of eternal damnation so that I may boldly speak truth in your name, in love! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2014 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

To subscribe to DayBreaks, use this link: https://daybreaksdevotions.wordpress.com and click on the Subscribe button at the right of the page.  If you wish to unsubscribe, at the bottom of each email you receive about DayBreaks, you should find an “Unsubscribe” ink at the bottom of the email.

NOTE: Galen is a missionary with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI) and raises his own support.  DayBreaks is free – and will remain so – but if you wish to help Galen in his ministry work, you can donate on his behalf.  Donations (one-time or recurring) may be made by going to this link: http://www.medicalambassadors.org/donate.html. Look down the left side of the page until you find the SUPPORT MISSIONARIES section then click on “Galen Dalrymple” and you’ll be taken to PayPal where you can make your donation.  If you prefer to donate via check, you may do so by writing your check payable to Medical Ambassadors International and put S090 in the “memo” field. Mail the check to Medical Ambassadors International, P.O. Box 1302, Salida, CA 95368.  All donations are tax deductible as MAI is a 501.c.3 organization certified with both the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability and Guidestar.

Thank you!

DayBreaks for 4/22/14 – Promising, But Alas…

DayBreaks for 4/22/14 – Promising, but Alas…

Do you recall this NT story of Jesus and the disciples? The disciples come upon a fig tree which was flourishing with a burst of leaves. Jesus went to the tree and looked among the leaves, but found no figs. It is the nature of the fig tree to get its fruit before the leaves, so Jesus had an expectation of finding fruit!

This is an illustration of the age-old story of promise without fulfillment. Charles Lamb shared an anecdote about a certain man in whose life, he said, there were three stages. When he was young, people said of him, “He will do something.” As he grew older and did nothing, they said of him, “He could do something if he tried.” Towards the end of his life they said of him, “He might have done something, if he had tried.”

That could be the epitaph of too many Christians…and too many churches.  What will your epitaph say?  What will God say of what you did with the potential that He created and placed inside of you?

PRAYER: Father, teach us to eagerly pursue living up to all the amazing potential you have placed in each and every one of us, and help us to encourage others to live up to the potential that you created in them, too! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2014 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

To subscribe to DayBreaks, use this link: https://daybreaksdevotions.wordpress.com and click on the Subscribe button at the right of the page.  If you wish to unsubscribe, at the bottom of each email you receive about DayBreaks, you should find an “Unsubscribe” ink at the bottom of the email.

NOTE: Galen is a missionary with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI) and raises his own support.  DayBreaks is free – and will remain so – but if you wish to help Galen in his ministry work, you can donate on his behalf.  Donations (one-time or recurring) may be made by going to this link: http://www.medicalambassadors.org/donate.html. Look down the left side of the page until you find the SUPPORT MISSIONARIES section then click on “Galen Dalrymple” and you’ll be taken to PayPal where you can make your donation.  If you prefer to donate via check, you may do so by writing your check payable to Medical Ambassadors International and put S090 in the “memo” field. Mail the check to Medical Ambassadors International, P.O. Box 1302, Salida, CA 95368.  All donations are tax deductible as MAI is a 501.c.3 organization certified with both the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability and Guidestar.

Thank you!