DayBreaks for 3/28/17 – Watch Out for the Snake

DayBreaks for 3/28/17: Watch Out for the Snake

CHINA – “When arriving at the bottom of a tequila bottle after a long night with the guys, someone is always dared to take down the worm. However, very rarely, if ever, does the worm fight back. In China, alcoholic drinks such as rice wine contain preserved snakes or other creatures in place of the ever-popular worm. As a man named Li cracked open a bottle during his lunch break, the pickled snake lunged out of the bottle and bit him in the neck. The victim was taken to a hospital where he was not believed to be in any danger. According to the Xin Bao newspaper, the bottle’s stopper was made from wood or cork and allowed air in the vessel, helping the snake to survive in the bottle for a year.”

You know, I find that there are things in my life that I thought were dead and gone, but then they come back to bite me.  It seems to be at a time when I’ve been thinking, “Whew…I’m glad I’ve got that licked!” that they often raise their ugly head once again.  Such is the my constant need for reminders that I’m not so good or strong as I’d like to think. You’d think that at some point I’d learn how weak I really am.

Sometimes I wonder if it’s that I’m that weak or that evil is that powerful.  And when I reflect on it that way, I think that both are true.  I am far weaker in the flesh than I’d like to be, or than I want to admit to being.  But Satan is not a novice at this game – he’s been around the block more than once since the days of Adam and Eve.  And it’s not just me – everyone has fallen to his schemes.  It’s no excuse, though, for stronger than Satan is Jesus, and God won’t let me get away with excuses.

It only took a small fracture in the cork to allow enough air into the bottle to keep the snake alive.  Sadly, sometimes in our lives we don’t just leave a little crack for Satan to slither through, we leave the door wide open and hang out the “Welcome – come on in!” sign.  Would that we shut the door entire to Satan and opened the door wide for Jesus!

Beware – the snake will be on the prowl until his head is crushed one final time.

PRAYER: Help us to learn from our mistakes, to love You more, and to be alert to our enemy.  May we open the door of our hearts fully to Your Spirit!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2017 by Galen Dalrymple.

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DayBreaks for 05/29/13 – I Want to Know THAT God!

DayBreaks for 05/29/13 – I Want to Know THAT God

abrahamisaacNOTE: I am back but weary!  New DayBreaks will resume no later than the first week of June, 2013!  Thanks for your prayers while I was away!!!

In The Ragamuffin Gospel, Brennan Manning told the story about a pastor he knew who was teaching one morning from Genesis 22, where God commanded Abraham to take Isaac and offer him as a sacrifice.  After a bit of exposition, the pastor asked the class: “But what does this story mean to us?”  Manning continued: “A middle-aged man spoke up.  I’ll tell you the meaning this story has for me.  I’ve decided that me and my family are looking for another church.

The pastor was astonished, “What?  Why?”

“Because,” the man said, “when I look at that God, the God of Abraham, I feel I’m near a real God, not the sort of dignified, businesslike, Rotary Club God we chatter about here on Sunday mornings.  Abraham’s God could blow a man to bits, give and then take a child, ask for everything from a person, and then want more.  I want to know that God.”

The child of God knows that the graced life calls him or her to live on a cold and windy mountain, not on the flattened plain of reasonable, middle-of-the-road religion.  For at the heart of the gospel of grace, the sky darkens, the wind howls, a young man walks up another Moriah in obedience to a God who demands everything and stops at nothing.  Unlike Abraham, he carries a cross on his back rather than sticks for the fire…like Abraham, listening to a wild and restless God who will have His way with us, no matter what the cost.

This is the God of the gospel of grace.  A God, who out of love for us, sent the only Son He ever had wrapped in our skin.  He learned how to walk, stumbled and fell, cried for His milk, sweated blood in the night, was lashed with a whip and showered with spit, was fixed to a cross and died whispering forgiveness on us all.”

Can you identify with the man who longed for the God of Abraham?  That kind of God is clearly spelled with a capital “G”.  Perhaps much of our problem, the reason that our Christianity today seems so powerless, is because we don’t want a God “…who demands everything and stops at nothing”.  That kind of a God isn’t comfortable.  But there is no doubt that He is God and that He will have all of our life or none of it.  Will you serve that God?  Don’t you want to know and serve a God who acts like God rather than the predictable business-like God of so many churches today?

Whether you want Him or not – it doesn’t change the fact that He is that kind of a God.  He always has been and He always will be.  The question is: do you want to know Him?

Copyright 2002 by Galen C. Dalrymple.  ><}}}”>

Copyright 2013 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

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NOTE: Galen has started working with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI) (medicalambassadors.org) and is responsible for raising own support.  DayBreaks is free – and will remain so – but if you wish to help support Galen in his ministry work with MAI, you can make a donation on his behalf.  One-time donations may be made by going to this linke: http://www.medicalambassadors.org/donate.html and look down the left side of the page until you find the SUPPORT MISSIONARIES section.  Then look for “Galen Dalrymple”.  Click his name and you’ll be taken to PayPal where you can donate to his support.  If you wish to make a recurring donation, contact suzette@med-amb.org or call her at 209-543-7500 ext. 219.  You can also write a check to Medical Ambassadors International (a 501.c.3 non-profit – meaning your donations are deductible) and put S090 in the Memo field.  Mail the check to Medical Ambassadors International, P.O. Box 1302, Salida, CA 95368.

Medical Ambassadors International is a 501.c.3 organization that has been serving the needy, sharing the gospel and helping them become self-sufficient for 32 years.  Check them out!  They are also members of ECFA (the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability). Your support is greatly appreciated!!!!  Thank you!

DayBreaks for 04/01/13 – The Day the World Grew Dangerous

DayBreaks for 04/01/13 – The Day the World Grew Dangerous            

dangerousChristianity is unlike any other religion for any reasons.  First, it’s not a religion – it’s about an intimate relationship with God, but we’ll not to into all the other differences, except to note that unlike other religions, Christianity can trace its origin to one particular events in one moment on a single day in history: the resurrection. 

When Jesus appears to the women at the tomb, he is very nonchalant in the Greek when he said, “Greetings!”  It’s as close as you could come to saying something so ordinary, like: “Hi!  How are you doing?  Nice day, isn’t it?”  Almost as if Jesus were saying, “You were expecting this, right?  I told you I’d do this!”

John Ortberg wrote about it in Who Is This Man?: “Sunday changed everything, but not in the way many people think.  From our point of view 2000 years later, many people think of Easter as a comforting story that says, ‘Spring is coming.  Flowers are blooming.  Life is eternal.  Everything is going to work out.’  But the response to the resurrection on the first Easter in the Gospels consistently includes fear.  In fact, people were more afraid after the resurrection than they were before.  And none of the gospel accounts have Jesus or the angels saying, ‘Now  you don’t have to worry about dying anymore.

“What Jesus does say to his followers is that there is work to be done.  In effect, ‘The cross didn’t stick.  Their plan to stop my movement didn’t work.  It’s going to go on.  Matter of fact, my plan to love even  your enemies, to be willing to sacrifice, suffer, and even die for the sake of love has been vindicated by my Father.

“They’re really going to be ticked off now.  Pilate and the chief priests have already plotted to squelch this news.  They are furious.  They are desperate.  I’ve leaving now.  So you go, you women, you disciples.  Tell them all that the cross failed, Caesar failed, Pilate failed, the chief priests failed.  Now they have you to contend with.”

Ortberg continues: “On Sunday their lives didn’t get safer; their lives got a lot more dangerous.  What got released on Sunday was not comfort.  Also, what got released on Sunday was not assurance about life after death. 

“What got released on Sunday was hope.  Not hope that life would turn out well.  Not even hope that there will be life after death.  Hope that called people to die: die to selfishness and sin and fear and greed, die to the lesser life of a lesser self so that a greater self might be born.  And many people did.”

What did you celebrate yesterday?  It isn’t wrong to celebrate the resurrection.  But did you also consider what it means – what the implications are for the rest of your temporal life?  I doubt few of us gave that much thought, but we should.  It was the day the world became dangerous if you wear the name “Christian.”     

PRAYER: Sometimes in our celebrations we forget the seriousness of our calling, Lord.  Let us not fear what man can do to us, but boldly proclaim the resurrection!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2013 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 has started working with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI) (medicalambassadors.org) and is responsible for raising own support.  DayBreaks is free – and will remain so – but if you wish to help support Galen in his ministry work with MAI, you can make a donation on his behalf.  One-time donations may be made by going to this linke: http://www.medicalambassadors.org/donate.html and look down the left side of the page until you find the SUPPORT MISSIONARIES section.  Then look for “Galen Dalrymple”.  Click his name and you’ll be taken to PayPal where you can donate to his support.  If you wish to make a recurring donation, contact suzette@med-amb.org or call her at 209-543-7500 ext. 219.  You can also write a check to Medical Ambassadors International (a 501.c.3 non-profit – meaning your donations are deductible) and put S090 in the Memo field.  Mail the check to Medical Ambassadors International, P.O. Box 1302, Salida, CA 95368. 

Medical Ambassadors International is a 501.c.3 organization that has been serving the needy, sharing the gospel and helping them become self-sufficient for 32 years.  Check them out!  They are also members of ECFA (the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability).

Your support is greatly appreciated!!!!  Thank you!

DayBreaks for 05/01/12 – Am I Some Dangerous Revolutionary?

DayBreaks for 04/30/12 – Am I Some Dangerous Revolutionary?

The world's most dangerous revolutionary was born in Bethlehem

Matthew 26:52-55 – “Put away your sword,” Jesus told him. “Those who use the sword will die by the sword. 53 Don’t you realize that I could ask my Father for thousands of angels to protect us, and he would send them instantly? 54 But if I did, how would the Scriptures be fulfilled that describe what must happen now?” 55 Then Jesus said to the crowd, “Am I some dangerous revolutionary, that you come with swords and clubs to arrest me? Why didn’t you arrest me in the Temple? I was there teaching every day.”

There are so many things about the night before Jesus’ crucifixion that touch our hearts and capture our imaginations.  Clandestine meetings, friends who betray, high drama as the disciples fear for their own lives, the solemnity of the Last Supper, the wrestling in the Garden with sleep and despair.

One of the most amazing things is that, aside from the agony in the Garden, how Jesus remained so calm.  In the passage for today, Judas has just led the soldiers to the Garden where he has given Jesus the kiss of betrayal and Peter cut off the ear of the servant.  Have you ever thought about Jesus’ astounding statement: “Am I some dangerous revolutionary, that you come with swords and clubs to arrest me?”  How would you answer that question?

Absolutely!  He was dangerous to all that was opposed to God and in league with the devil.  He has led the greatest revolution in all history, so in that sense it was dangerous, but in many ways it was not because it is a revolution based on love, as demonstrated in his healing of the one arresting him.  There has never been a more dangerous revolutionary in the entire world.

The question, however, is whether the revolution that Jesus came to initiate has reached into your heart and mine.  No matter how long you have been a disciple of Jesus, there are parts of the revolutionizing of your heart and mind that have yet to be realized.  Ask the Spirit for the power to change and not to resist.

PRAYER: Lord, it is often hard for us to believe that Your plan for us is really the best or even that it is good!  Often, Your plan seems confusing and painful.  Let us trust in Your character, and Your promise, that Your plan for us to for good and to give us life and a future!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2012 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

I Am 2 is now engaged in a project to provide temporary shelter, food, water and adult care to 37 orphans in Migori, Kenya.  We are trying to raise up an army of compassionate people who will each contribute whatever they can – even $5-10 each, to help us provide care for these children until our partner in the project, BrightPoint for Children, can secure sponsorships for these 37 kids.  If you want to contribute, follow this link and scroll down to find the “Donate” button: Help the 37 Migori Orphans

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DayBreaks for 02/28/12 – Hand Grenades, Sky Divers and Sin

DayBreaks for 02/28/12 – Hand Grenades, Sky Divers and Sin

We are better off to leave some things alone...

An elite squad of six Chinese soldiers, performing a training ritual for a public audience in Hong Kong in January, stood in a circle and passed a satchel of live grenades from man to man, counting down to the expected moment of explosion. At the last possible second, the man caught holding the satchel discards it, and all dive into a hole for protection. At the exhibition, according to Chinese Central
Television, it worked out fine. [Daily Telegraph (London), 1-23-2012]

Why is it that people play Russian roulette, play with live grenades, tease and play with live cobras and do other such wild and dangerous things?  There seems to be something about us humans that likes to live on the edge.  We want to push the limits.  We throw ourselves out of perfectly good airplanes for a rush…daring death, but certainly hoping for life.

But it doesn’t always work that way, does it?  There will be the time when the chute doesn’t open, when the world-class free climber loses his/her grip on the vertical rock wall and plunges to their death.

I suppose a lot of it has to do with the exhilaration of knowing what could happen if things go wrong, but knowing that the odds are with us to survive.  And we bank on those odds.

When it comes to sin, we like to live on the edge, too.  We “play with fire” hoping to not get burned.  And we may get away with it for years – decades, even.  But if Scripture is clear about one thing, it is this: that our sins will “find us out” and we they will eventually be revealed.  “But don’t be afraid of those who threaten you. For the time is coming when everything that is covered will be revealed, and all that is secret will be made known to all.” – Matthew 10:26

We read stories like this about the Chinese soldiers playing with a live hand grenade and think, “That’s crazy!” but we tend to not believe that sin is far deadlier than any live hand grenade.  If we did, we wouldn’t play games with it like we do.

PRAYER: Forgive us for thinking that you don’t notice our sin, that it is innocent and doesn’t harm either us or others.  Help us see and understand the deadliness of playing around with deadly things!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2012 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

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