Karen's Devotions

This is a selected collection of my devotions e-published on Daily Devotions, Journey Christian Church, Irvine, California; George Bragg, Editor. To join the mailing list, email George, gbragg@cox.net.

My Photo

As a 25+ year homeschooling vet, post-cancer, math prof, mother of five, master's track and field athlete, and certificated private pilot, I have a lot to share about what God has done in my life. In 2000 I began writing devotions as something to try when it seemed like accoustic pianists were becoming an endangered species at church. I have since found great blessings from writing and sharing. God is good.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

You're A Winner!

First Published February 26, 2010

…But the gift of god is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

All of us who have accepted Christ into our hearts have experienced an exuberant joy of being given new life and new hope. For me it was like winning one of those sweepstakes:

Ding-dong! Congratulations! I am the Promise of Salvation. (My friends call me P.O.S!) By accepting Christ as your Lord and Savior, you, yes You, have just been given the Gift of Eternal Life! This is an all expense paid in full trip to be in God’s presence FOREVER! Excited, huh? I love this job! Ahem, this also includes the exclusive No Pain, No Fear, No Sickness features. And in addition…what? Well, no I got it correct. Nope. It doesn’t say, “trip for two.” Well, I have been doing this fulltime for centuries, you know! Ah, that’s in the manual under “spreading the good news!”

And with all that joy, I also felt a twinge of sadness at the thought that someone I cared about was on a fast track path away from God. They were missing the wonderful gift of salvation, and as my fictitious messenger said, the answer could be found in the Bible.

Each of us has friends or relatives who know that we follow the Good News of the Bible and have committed our lives to Jesus Christ. And some of these souls really don't know the true meaning of Christian. Do many of them dwell upon the human side of Christianity? "They are all hypocrites!" "All they do is ask for money." "How can there be a savior when there is sickness in the world?"

Well, the truth is that each day is like getting word that you are an instant winner! You have Acceptance (Romans 8:15), Comfort (Matthew 5:4), and Hope (1Peter 1:3) that YES, this is the first day of the rest of your life! Congratulations!

And about those you care about who haven't realize this fantastic prize, on a note card write out the word "Winner" and include a couple of your favorite promise verses like I've referenced above. Now send this to a special person "snail" mail. Commit him or her to prayer and wait for the wonderful results. It doesn't say "trip for two." It does say "trip for all!" (Luke 2:10)

Copyright 2010, Karen Vaughn

A Stitch In Time

First Published February 8, 2010

Acts 8:34-35
The eunuch asked Philip, “Tell me please, who is the prophet talking about, himself or someone else?” Then Philip began with that very passage of Scripture and told him the good news about Jesus.

Recently I started a crochet project. I knew the chain, single and double crochet stitches, but I hadn’t touched a crochet needle in, oh decades. The chain stitch came easily, but the other instructions just seemed unintelligible. I decided to just make up something. After a few failed experiments, I got a pattern that seemed to work. I took my project with me when we visited family in Florida. Sue, my mom-in-law who is a crafter/seamstress par excellent, took a look at my work and remarked that she didn’t bother with complicated stitches. Hm. I watched her connect double stitches correctly and then I understood.

The story of the Court Treasurer of Ethiopia may be found in Acts 8:36-40. The official was returning from his trip to Jerusalem. God led Philip to intercept and “join this chariot.” I suspect that being an important official, the treasurer was not alone. However, Philip was able to have a conversation with him. The official was reading Isaiah, but did not fully understand it. Philip revealed that the prophet in question was Jesus and led the official to be baptized.

Our Christian walk is never complete here on earth, so we should be seeking the truth daily. I was too lazy and stubborn to ask for and seek out instructions for crocheting correctly. Likewise, I am too lazy to make deep spiritual inquiry, so I may better understand God’s word.

Well, today’s account gives us a good start. The treasurer was found reading Isaiah. So I too need to read God’s word. The treasurer and Philip discussed the text. I need to be in a discussion of Biblical content. And finally, the treasurer asked questions. I need to be bold and seek answers.

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find;
knock and the door will be opened to you. Matthew 7:7

**** ****
Lord, help me to be strong and brave to ask questions. I seek to know your word and your will. I pray that as I seek, I will open my mind to learn and heed, in the way that pleases you. Amen.

Copyright 2010, Karen Vaughn