A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 0-9
1. Listen to Jehovah. Many think they know the answers, but they don't even know the questions.   2. Study regularly, study deeply. We can be desensitized by what we see and hear, thinking it isn't bad, i.e., x-mas songs. We hear them; next thing we know the tune is running around in our head. In a short time we are humming them just as Satan wants.   3. Do we spend pioneer time in front of the TV or computer, and token time in service? Psalms 119:37, 'Make my eyes pass on from seeing what is worthless.'   4. Jesus is countless billions of years old ... and one day we will be as old as Jesus is now, and he'll only be twice our age.   5. The Bible is inspired of the Sovereign of the Universe. It's a masterpiece, give it careful attention.   6. The reasons some give for not being at the meetings is the very reason why they need to be there.   7. Too busy because of the high cost of living, or living high? You can't put enough money in the bank to get through Armageddon.   8. A couple of young brothers are going to a movie. When asked if it has bad language, they reply, 'yes, but we hear it all the time in school.' Do we want to pay to hear more? It should hurt our ears.   9. Every meeting is a holy, sacred occasion. Never be absent by choice.   10. Some are slowly losing the sense of urgency. We are in the heart and heat of a universal emergency. All in heaven have their attention focused on earth and what we are doing.   11. If we had the cure for cancer we would tell everyone? We DO have the cure for cancer, AIDS, and even death. People desperately need to hear. Our ministry is an extension of God's love. When you talk with someone they are face to face with a representative of Jehovah God.   "Jehovah's people never see each other for the last time"  

I would like to introduce you to four brothers in the congregation, Brother Somebody, Brother Everybody, Brother Anybody and Brother Nobody. All four brothers are very different from the rest of the congregation...it's too bad...but that's the way it is...really...it is a shame that it is that way.

Here are some of the problems these brothers have: Everybody failed to take advantage of the weekend time he had to go in service. He was always staying home from service on Sunday because he had some company or sometimes just because he had something else to do.

Now as for Anybody...he wanted to go in service but he didn't because he was afraid that Somebody would not be there to work with him. So do you know who went out? Nobody.

As it turns out Nobody was the only active one of the group. It was Nobody that always supported the meetings for service, it was Nobody that always showed up to clean the hall. It was Nobody that always made return visits on the literature he placed. And why? Because Nobody kept a house to house record.

One time at a meeting, the theocratic school overseer needed a brother to give one of the talks on the school program. Everybody thought certainly Anybody could do it, so he didn't offer. Anybody thought Somebody would do it. Do you know who offered to accept the assignment? That's right...Nobody.

There was an interested person that came to the meeting one Sunday. Everybody thought Somebody should approach the new one and offer to study with him. Anybody could have done it. But, again ... guess who did it?

Nobody.

 

Based on the account as found in Genesis chapters 12-15.   The speaker started off by asking if we personally were going to experience life in paradise. He stated that we will, if we keep driving the birds away. He also mentioned that in order to receive Jehovah's blessing and approval, we MUST continue to drive the birds away.   He draws our attention to the account of Abram where Jehovah has stated to him that he's going to bless him. Abram now builds an alter to Jehovah and in Genesis 15:9, 10 Jehovah tells him which animals to sacrifice. Abram does just so. He cuts the animals in half (all except the birds) and lays one half of the animal on the left and one half on the right. We read in Genesis 15:11 that the 'birds of prey' (the first mention of birds of prey in the Bible) began to descend on the sacrifice... but Abram kept driving them away! The brother then asked, why did Abram do that? For what reason? The answer: Abram wanted his sacrifice to Jehovah to be clean, acceptable, uncontaminated in his view and in Jehovah's view. He didn't want those birds to 'dirty-up' his sacrifice.   He then asked what kind of sacrifices are we personally offering to Jehovah. What Birds could contaminate our sacrifice to God? How can we drive them away?   First, he defined what our sacrifices are: #1 - Ourselves (Romans 12:1) whole-souled service, #2 - Our public Ministry (Heb. 13:15) 'Bulls of our lips' #3 - Good Deeds (Heb. 13:16) Cleaning the Hall, RBC, Disaster relief for brothers & non-believers, and #4 - Giving of thanks (Ps. 116:17-19). He then asked .. what birds might be affecting/dirtying- up/contaminating our sacrifices to Jehovah? He then defined "Birds": anything, anybody, any thought that could have a negative affect on our sacrifice to Jehovah! Where do these 'birds' come from? Mostly from inside ourselves..attitudes within us: fear, doubt, envy, greed, pride, love of material things, desire to have a 'normal' life. We may be contaminating our own sacrifice to Jehovah!   He mentioned examples of things that happen in every day life that could contaminate our sacrifice in Jehovah's view: over-indulgence in alcohol/food or immorality (things that contaminate the body) and asked us to read with him 1 Cor. 6:15. He also mentioned watching things such as Soap Operas. Here is one that he said occasionally presented a problem at Bethel: Sports! The brothers have an arrangement for the Bethelites to engage in sports. But what sometimes happens is that the brothers play hard/rough and end up getting injured and are unable to work. He says he asks them: 'has this 'messed-up' your sacrifice to Jehovah? He mentions another 'bird' that could negatively affect our service to Jehovah (if we allow it to) is gossip that's been spread about you personally.. people who may attribute bad motives to something you've done.   He mentions how young David went to take some food & other things to his older brothers who were serving in battle. When he heard the giant taunting Jehovah's people, he became angry and wanted to defend Jehovah's name. However, his brother said to him: "You only came because you want to see the battle!" How did David react? He turned aside from his brother and continued on with what he'd planned to do! He knew what his intentions were. He simply turned aside from those who could have a negative affect on his attitude or thinking and in turn, his sacrifice to Jehovah.   He gave a couple of modern-day examples: Suppose a sister has a beautiful singing voice and sings proudly at the meetings. Someone may say "Who does she think she is?!" Should that sister come to the hall and lower her voice when singing? Not if her motive is to praise Jehovah God with her gift! She should sing loud and proud! How about this one: A sister in the hall is widowed/divorced and has been for some time. When the circuit overseer comes, she offers to prepare a meal for him. Some in the congregation say "She's trying to get a husband" while others say "She's just showing off her cooking!", when the sister was simply showing hospitality! If we should find ourselves in such a situation, would we allow it to negatively affect our sacrifice to Jehovah? And if we do, we should consider whether the bigger issue is what was said, or how we took it. Should we not pursue peace, perhaps by simply overlooking the matter? He reminded us that when Cain and Abel made their sacrifice, Jehovah took note of the men first, then their sacrifice. Jehovah took note of their motives and that's why he accepted Abel's sacrifice. So, regardless of what others may say about us we can rest assured that Jehovah knows the situation and our motives so we should not allow these situations to have a negative affect on our sacrifice to Jehovah.   He reiterated that anything, anybody or any thought that could contaminate our sacrifice to Jehovah, we should drive away! He then drew our attention back to Abram. He was constantly driving the birds away from his sacrifice. How did Jehovah view his efforts? As foolish? He then asked us to read with him Genesis 15: 12, 17, and 18. Abram's sacrifice was acceptable to Jehovah and he was blessed.    The same can be said of us if we (and he asked the audience to say it with him) Keep Driving the Birds Away!  

FACT 1: As each goose flaps its wings, it creates an "uplift" for the birds that follow. By flying in a "V" formation, the whole flock adds 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew alone. 

LESSON: People who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going quicker and easier, because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.

FACT 2: When a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of flying alone. It then quickly moves back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird immediately in front of it. 

LESSON: If we have as much sense as a goose we will stay in formation with those headed where we want to go. We will be willing to accept their help and give our help to others.

FACT 3: When the lead goose tires, it rotates back into the formation and another goose flies to the point position. 

LESSON: It pays to take turns doing the hard tasks and sharing leadership. As with geese, people are interdependent on each other's skills, capabilities and unique arrangements of gifts, talents or resources.

FACT 4: The geese flying in formation honk to encourage those up front to keep up their speed. 

LESSON: We need to make sure our honking is encouraging. In groups where there is encouragement, the production is much greater. The power of encouragement (to stand by one's heart or core values and encourage the heart and core of other) is the quality of honking we seek.

FACT 5: When a goose gets sick, wounded or shot down, tow geese drop out of formation and follow it down to help and protect it. They stay with it until it dies or is able to fly again. Then, they launch out with another formation or catch up with the flock. 

LESSON: If we have as much sense as geese, we will stand by each other in difficult times as well as when we are strong.

As you travel through life

there are always those times

when decisions just have to be made

when the choices are hard, and solutions seem scarce

and the rain seems to soak your parade!

 

There are some situations where all you can do

is to simply let go and move on

gather courage together and choose a direction

that carries you toward a new dawn.

 

So pack up your troubles and take a step forward

the process of change can be tough

but think about all the excitement ahead

if you can be stalwart enough!

 

There could be adventures you never imagined

just waiting around the next bend

and wishes and dreams just about to come true

in ways you can't yet comprehend!

 

Perhaps you'll find friendships that spring from new interests

as you challenge your status quo

and learn there are so many options in life,

and so many ways you can grow!

 

Perhaps you'll go places you never expected

and see things that you've never seen

or travel to fabulous, faraway worlds

and wonderful spots in between!

 

Perhaps you'll find warmth and affection

and caring--a somebody special who's there

to help you stay centered and listen with interest

to stories and feeling you share.

 

Perhaps you'll find comfort in knowing

your friends are supportive of all that you do

and believe that whatever decisions you make,

they'll be the right choices for you!

 

So keep putting one foot in front of the other

and taking your life day by day.

There's a brighter tomorrow that's just down the road.

Don't look back--you're not going that way!

Doves are a prevalent symbol of Christians in the Bible. At Matthew 10:16, Jesus told his followers to be cautious (wise) as serpents, yet gentle (harmless) as doves. What is so special about doves? Why were they used rather than some other bird?

A number of years ago, my family had a lot of bird pens and raised chickens, pigeons, roosters, doves and assorted other creatures.

Most birds, even those not meat eating, are predators even against their own kind. That is, they will kill the eggs and destroy the nests of other birds in order to make themselves and their offspring superior. Many humans and nations are like this also destroying others to keep themselves from being destroyed or even to keep themselves from merely losing some monetary objectives.

But doves are not like that. Rather than destroy the nests of other doves, all in the pen will take turns sitting on the nests... even the single males. Pigeons and chickens will not do this.

Doves mate for life in male/female pairs and others will not interfere in these relationships trying to steal a dove's mate. Other birds are likely mated all to one dominant male (like chickens). (A few bird species such as eagles, parakeets, pigeons will mate for life, but are still aggressive, fighting type birds).

Doves care for each other; cuddle together for warmth; help care for eggs/nests/infants; and will only reject a member once the illness or injury is unrecoverable. Then they will isolate the member from the rest. Most bird species will peck an injured one to death at the first sign of illness or injury. They will also peck to death the babies of other birds including their own kinds.

Doves, therefore, naturally mimic much of the conduct expected of Christians as shown in the following Bible verses:

1 Thessalonians 5:14; Hebrews 11:34; Romans 15:1; Hebrews 4:15; 1 Corinthians 13:4; Hebrews 10;23-25; Romans 1:12; Hebrews 13:4; 2 Timothy 2:24; 2 Corinthians 10:3

Even though we live in the world, a world full of Satan's birds who would pick us and our seeds to death, we do not wage war as the world does as Paul stated above.

Let us act like doves and not other birds. Matthew 13:3, 4, 18, 19. Do not allow the birds to pluck away that which you have received in learning Bible truth. Your fellow doves are always around to help if you are willing to make use of them.

Did you hear of the man that had a horse for sale? This man did not speak too much English, so when the buyer came he told the buyer that the horse was "not-looking-so-good".

The buyer insisted that this was a beautiful animal and that the price was right. So he bought the horse.

Two days later he was back complaining: "Why did you not tell me the horse was blind!" The man replied: "I did tell you the horse was not-looking-so-good!"

Doesn't this remind you of the times that we should be "paying more than the usual attention"? This can be applied to the service as well as paying attention at the meetings.

On certain sections of the earth there grows a tree which has been named the Judas Tree, because of its deceitfulness. This tree, it is said, has most beautiful crimson blossoms. These appear before the leaves. Their flaming beauty attracts innumerable insects. The busy bee, ever on the lookout for honey, is drawn to the flowers. But every insect, and every bee, that alights upon the blossoms imbibes a fatal opiate, and drops dead from among the crimson blossoms to the earth. Beneath the Judas Tree the earth is strewed with its victims.

How marvelously this tree illustrates the deceitfulness and the danger of sin! The poisonous insect and the useful bee, alike, were enticed and met a similar fate—death.  Even with the best of intentions, one may meet disaster by endeavoring to be something you are not, showing deceitfulness, hypocrisy, and misleading the unwary.

« Start Previous 1 2 Next End »