DayBreaks for 8/22/16 – Misunderstanding Life – and the Father

 

DayBreaks for 8/22/16 – Misunderstanding Life – and the Father

There is no greater example of the gospel than that found in Luke 15 where Jesus tells three stories: the lost sheep, the lost coin…and the “prodigal son” story (and that’s a huge misnomer!) So, my dear, dear friend…this is a story for you…

Luke 15:17-20 (ESV) – But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have more than enough bread, but I perish here with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Treat me as one of your hired servants.”’ And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.

Our lead teacher (Randy) has been doing a series on this chapter and it has been so rich! Sunday, he spoke about this son – this younger, prideful, rebellious son and about his return home. There were some key points that I wanted to share from his message because they blessed me and I think they’ll bless you, too.

FIRST: this young, headstrong and inconsiderate man thought that in license there would be freedom. He wanted to cast off the restraints of living in the presence of the father, thinking that if he could only go and do what he wanted, to be in charge and control of his own life, that he could find happiness. But, as Randy noted, “License always ends in bondage.” We think that the lack of restraints is what will not only bring us joy, but bring us freedom. It won’t. It ends in bondage. License doesn’t set you free – the Truth is what sets us free!

SECOND: the son totally misunderstood the father. He is hoping against hope to be welcome to serve as a hired hand in the father’s house and business. That’s all he could aspire to, all he could imagine after what he’d done to his father. But this just shows how badly he misunderstood the father. There is no way that the father would take his son back as a hired hand! No! This son was treated to the father’s very own rob, to shoes for his feet, a ring for his hand…but far more than that, what was the greatest gift of the father was his embrace and kiss. Fathers don’t embrace and kiss hired hands…but they do their sons and daughters. This son had no idea how much he was loved by the father until the embrace and kiss took place!

THIRD: perhaps most importantly – and I hope you don’t miss this one – the embrace and kiss are NOT given to the son because he came home.  They are given because he was a son…a child so deeply loved by the father that no other response from the father was even possible! The embrace and kiss had to be given because the father couldn’t not constrain his love.

In order to come home, we have to believe in the love of the father. The young man believed – or rather hoped – that there was some compassion in the heart of his dad.  He just didn’t know the love that was in the father’s heart.

And so it is with you and me. We won’t come home (not to a physical or metaphysical place) but into the relationship of the Father’s person, unless we begin to believe He loves us. And when we make the first step, oh sweet joy! – the Father runs to us, encircles us with His almighty arms, and gives us a “welcome home” kiss!

Are you away from “home”, thinking that maybe if you’re super lucky, that the Father might let you inhabit the darkest corner of heaven as a sweeper of the golden street? Forget it! You will be welcomed as a beloved child – and the greatest celebration of all eternity will begin – and never end!

PRAYER: Oh, Father, Father, Father! Your love is so overwhelming! Help us believe that You love us like this – even more than this – and that we are welcome in the home of Your embrace forever! In the name of Christ Jesus, our Lord, Amen. 

Copyright 2016, Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.

 

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DayBreaks for 6/8/16 – Boldly Presumptuous

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DayBreaks for 6/08/16 – Boldly Presumptuous

From our worship bulletin this past Sunday:

“My dog is boldly presumptuous. She presumes that everyone who comes to our home is there to see her. Whether you’re a friend, solicitor or a delivery or repair person, if you come to our house and ring the doorbell, she’ll run to greet you with yelps and howls, and when we open the door, she’ll rush out and jump up on you. If you visit often, she gets even more excited. She may even bring a toy in her mouth because she’ll assume you want to play with her. Once you’re safely inside and things have calmed down a bit, she’ll sit at your feet expectantly looking up at you, waiting for you to pet or scratch her. If you don’t get the hint, she’ll start nudging your arm with her nose or even scratching at you with her paws in an effort to remind you of the real reason you came to our house in the first place, to see her! If you sit on our den sofa, she’ll jump up next to you. She’s truly bold and presumptuous!

“If you look up “presumptuous” or its root word “presume” in the dictionary, you’ll find definitions like, “expect or assume especially with confidence”; “suppose to be true without proof”; “go beyond what is right or proper”; “over-stepping the due bounds”; or “taking liberties”. You’ll find synonyms like audacity, brashness, chutzpah, immodesty, gall, nerviness, overfamiliarity and temerity, and you’ll find an example sentence like this one: “It’s a little presumptuous of you to assume I’m your new best friend just because I invited you along.”

“The apostle John was boldly presumptuous. He called himself, “the disciple Jesus loved” six times in his own gospel account. John only says that about himself, not about any of the rest of the twelve. He’s boldly proclaiming that he’s “Jesus’ BFF” (best friend forever), his favorite disciple.  That’s a pretty presumptuous statement on  his part since nowhere in scripture do we have a record of Jesus saying that to John. In fact, the Pharisees correctly said of Jesus, “You are impartial and don’t play favorites” (Mt. 22:16).  Just because Jesus spent some extra time alone with Peter, James and John and gave them some special attention, John presumed he was Jesus’ favorite.

“I once read a story about a toddler who was boldly presumptuous. One day, he was walking with his mother through the White House. Suddenly, he broke away from her as toddlers often do, and he ran as fast as his little legs would carry him right past the Secret Service agents and into the Oval Office where he interrupted an important meeting. He then proceeded to run right over and jump up on the President’s lap! The little boy just presumed he’d be welcomed by one of the most important people in the world. He was confident of that because he was the President’s son, John (John-John) Kennedy, Jr.

“The Bible says we can “come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and grace to help in time of need” (Heb. 4:16).  Just like little John-John, we can rush into the throne room of the most important One in the universe; we can interrupt Him and ask for whatever we need, and we can do this because we’re His children. You are one of God’s favorites because of what Jesus did on your behalf. As His children, we can be confident He loves us and wants to help us, protect us, and do what’s best for us.”

PRAYER: Thak You, King of the universe, for boldly welcoming us with open arms to Your throne room!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2016, Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.

DayBreaks for 5/10/16 – Come to Me

DayBreaks for 5/10/16 – Come to Me

Matthew 11:28 (NLTse) – Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest…”

Sometimes the most profound things are easy to miss, aren’t they? We often look for thunderbolts, and I suppose that figures because they tend to get our attention rather clearly and suddenly. We like things that aren’t hard to miss and don’t like to have to look hard for those nuggets of truth, but there’s one in today’s verse.

Jesus’ statement is one of the most beloved in Scripture for good reason – we’re all weary, all carrying burdens…and all in desperate need of rest. So, what do we focus on in this verse? On the rest part, right? And that’s where we miss it.

The most important words in this passage are the first three words out of Jesus’ mouth: Come to me…

Think about what Jesus didn’t say: he didn’t invite us to come to a synagogue (or church), he didn’t invite us to come to a social or gospel meeting or even to worship. He didn’t invite us to come participate in some program or project. He invites us to come to him.

It is in Christ that we will find all we long for – and far more.

PRAYER: Jesus, I want to come to you. I accept your invitation. Thank you for inviting us into your very Presence. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2016, Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.

 

 

DayBreaks for 6/26/14: I Won’t EVER

DayBreaks for 6/26/14 – I Won’t EVER

Romans 15:5-7 (NLT) May God, who gives this patience and encouragement, help you live in complete harmony with each other, as is fitting for followers of Christ Jesus. Then all of you can join together with one voice, giving praise and glory to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, accept each other just as Christ has accepted you so that God will be given glory.

Recently I read this story: “I saw him in the church building for the first time on Wednesday. He was in his mid-70’s with thinning silver hair and a neat brown suit. Many times in the past I had invited him to come. Several other Christian friends had talked to him about the Lord and had tried to share the good news with him. He was well respected, honest, a man of good character. He acted much like a Christian would act, but he never came to church or professed Christ.  After I got to know him well and we had talked about a wide range of subjects I asked him if he had ever been to a church service.

“He hesitated. Then with a twisted grimace told me of an experience he had as a boy. He was raised in a large family. His parents survived the depression but they struggled to provide food and clothing for the family. When he was around ten years old a friend invited him to go to church with his family.

“He went – the Sunday School class was great. The songs were fun to sing and the stories, oh the great Bible stories, were exciting to hear. He had never heard anyone read from the Bible before. As class ended the teacher pulled him aside and said, “Son, please don’t come again dressed as you are now. We want to look our best when we come into God’s house.”

“He looked down at his old hand me down overalls that were certainly worn and tattered. He thought about that for a moment and said softly, “No ma’am I won’t ever.” Then he looked at me, the author wrote and said, “And you know what… I never did.” It was clear that he was done with that conversation.

I am sure that the Sunday School teacher meant not harm and was probably reflecting the feeling of perhaps the majority of the folks in that church at that time. But what if, what if she had put her arms around the dirty little boy in the ragged overalls and said, “Son, I am thrilled that you came this morning and I hope you will come every chance you get to hear more about Jesus because he loves you so much.” Moreover, what if she would have talked with her pastor or her friends in the church and mobilized a full blown outreach effort to help this family make ends meet.

How might this story have been different if that church “Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. Or whoever gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones in the name of a disciple will receive a great reward.” (Matthew 10: 40 & 42)

The story ended like this: Yes I saw him in the church house for the first time on Wednesday and I cried as I looked at the immaculately dressed old gentleman lying there in his casket. He was looking his best. But all I could think of were those words of an impressionable little ten-year-old boy echoing in my mind, “No ma’am I won’t ever.”

PRAYER: For all the times we have meant well, but have harmed, forgive us!  Help us love as You do, those who are so different than us.  Teach us to welcome the poor and the outcast and those the world might consider unworthy.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

NOTE: Galen, a missionary with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI), raises his own support.  DayBreaks is free – but if you wish to help support his mission work, you may donate (one-time or recurring) by going to this link, then scroll down until you see SUPPORT MISSIONARIES section.  Below that header, on the left, scroll and then find and click on “Galen Dalrymple” and you’ll be taken to 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 putS090 in the “memo” field. Mail the check to Medical Ambassadors International, P.O. Box 1302, Salida, CA 95368.  MAI is a 501.c.3 organizations so all donations are tax deductible and Medical Ambassadors takes NO administrative fees of any kind out of your donations!

Your support would be deeplyy appreciated!

DayBreaks for 01/17/14 – How Could I Give You Up?

Is this one of those days when you really need to be reminded of how God feels about you?  We all have days like that.  Today may be one of them for you.  If so, I hope you’ll take the time to spend a brief moment in prayer right now, making this selection of passages from the prophet Hosea personal.  How do you do that?  Simple!  Every time you see the word “Israel” in the following passage, simply put your name in its place, and I think you’ll have new appreciation for what God has done and how He feels about you:

“Israel, how could I give you up?

My heart turns against it.

When Israel was a child, I loved him,

I myself taught him to walk,

I took him in my arms;

Yet he has not understood that I was the one looking after him.

I led him with reins of kindness,

With leading-strings of love.

I was like someone who lifts and infant close against his cheek;

Stooping down to him I gave him his food.

How could I treat you like Admah,

Or deal with you like Zeboiim?

My heart recoils from it,

My whole being trembles at the thought.

I will not give reign to my fierce anger,

I will not destroy Ephraim again,

For I am God, not man:

I am the Holy One in your midst

And have no wish to destroy.” – Hos. 11:1a, 3-4, 8c-9 (NAB)

Spend the rest of this day knowing that you are loved by the Almighty God of heaven.

PRAYER: Thank You for these words of consolation and peace! For all today who are struggling to believe in Your love, let the Spirit whisper these words deep into the heart! 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 serves as a missionary with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI) and must raise his own support.  DayBreaks is free – and will remain so – but if you wish to support Galen in his ministry, you can donate (one-time or recurring) 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 a link 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 01/16/14 – Close Enough to See His Face

DayBreaks for 01/16/14 – Close Enough to See His Face

NOTE: I am traveling for work this week so I’ll be recycling some DayBreaks from previous years.  New DayBreaks will resume again on 1/20/2014.  Thanks for your understanding!

From the DayBreaks archive, 1/15/2004:

Luke 8:20 (NLT)  – “Someone told Jesus, ‘Your mother and your brothers are outside, and they want to see you.’”

I doubt that there are Christians who don’t look forward to seeing Jesus.  Sure, there may be times when because of our sin, we may not want to see him at that particular moment, but when we think of seeing Jesus, we do have a sense of joyful expectation, don’t we?  Most of the time when we think of seeing Jesus, we picture it either in the context of His second coming, or the setting of our death or resurrection.  Yes, we’ll see Him then.  Every one will see the eyes of Jesus!  When we behold him, in that instant, I’m sure that we’ll learn a great deal about him.

But perhaps there is another time when we would do well to get close enough to him to see his face, so to speak.  In A Deeper Walk, Ben Pasley wrote about the reality of our frustration and anger with God at times because of how life is treating us or someone we love.  At times, when things are bad, we act as if God has offended us, let us down, or is failing to do his duty towards us.  Pasley suggests that at those times that we should “Tell him.  Do you think he can handle it?  Maybe he needs us to pound his chest and slap his face until things begin to make sense again, or at least until we have exhausted our anger.  Most people discover that when they move close enough to see his face, even in the rage of misunderstanding, that there is something to learn.  They discover the unexpected God.  Stereotypes begin to melt from the heat of his compassion and the washing of his tears.  How he reacts to human pain makes a difference.”

The passage from Luke records an instance in the life of Jesus where his mother and brothers sought to see him, but were prevented by the crowd that pressed around him.  What is admirable to me is that they wanted to see Jesus.  When things aren’t going the way I think they should in my life, rather than being angry at God and withdrawing from him in my anger and frustration, I’d be much better off to go to God and get close enough to see his face.  It’s there that I’ll learn something that could change my life.

How long has it been since you’ve been close enough to see his face?

PRAYER: Teach us new truth about You this day and every day until we finally see You face to face, Lord Jesus!  Let us seek Your face always! 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 serves as a missionary with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI) and must raise his own support.  DayBreaks is free – and will remain so – but if you wish to support Galen in his ministry, you can donate (one-time or recurring) 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 a link 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 07/11/13 – My Friend Douglass

DayBreaks for 07/11/13 – My Friend, Douglass    

lincoln.douglassRomans 8:31-34 (NLT) – What can we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? 32 Since God did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t God, who gave us Christ, also give us everything else? 33 Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? Will God? No! He is the one who has given us right standing with himself. 34 Who then will condemn us? Will Christ Jesus? No, for he is the one who died for us and was raised to life for us and is sitting at the place of highest honor next to God, pleading for us.

Frederick Douglass approached the front door of the White House, seeking admission into Abraham Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Ball. Just as Douglass was about to knock on the door, two policemen seized him, barring the black man’s entrance. Douglass, a large, powerful man, brushed the officers aside and stepped into the foyer. Once inside, two more officers grabbed the uninvited guest, all the while uttering racial slurs.

As Douglass was being dragged from the hall, he cried to a nearby patron, “Just say to Mr. Lincoln that Fred Douglass is at the door!” Confusion ensued. Then suddenly the officers received orders to usher Douglass into the East Room. In that beautiful room, the great abolitionist stood in the presence of the esteemed President. The place quieted as Lincoln approached his newly arrived guest, hand outstretched in greeting, and speaking in a voice loud enough so none could mistake his intent, the President announced, “Here comes my friend Douglass.”

The President had called Frederick Douglass friend. Who dared demean Douglass if he was a friend of the President?  Can you imagine for a moment how those guards at the door must have felt? 

Jesus Christ, the Lord of the universe, has called us not just his friends, but much more: his brothers and his sisters. God the Father has also called us His own children.  We have an accuser, someone who would stand at the gateway to heaven and attempt to deny us entrance.  His name is Satan.  He will be shamed in his accusations against us as Jesus, with a voice like thunder that could shake the universe, will proclaim, “Here comes my sister/brother!  Welcome!” and will overrule him.  Satan will be silenced!

Let us not think that because we’re in His family that we can just sit back and forget about those who don’t have Him as a brother.  There are many persons who lie stripped and beaten by the side of the road (think the Good Samaritan story). He or she may not yet be our brother or sister in Christ, but they are our friend, our neighbor, and by God’s grace they may one day be family. So let us pause and help, because once there was a man who paused on a cross for us.

PRAYER:  Lord, we long to hear You silence the accuser and put him to shame in his accusations!    We long to enter into our family Home to be with You forever!  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 is working as a missionary 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 link: 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 in good standing with ECFA (the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability).

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