Publisher Shearon Hurst         Issue 48    December 22 2004


Psalms 34: I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.

Do you remember the Lay’s potato chip commercial? Lays boasted that their chip was so good that you could not eat just one and stop. The commercial showed people trying their best to stop after eating one potato chip, but the taste and urge for another was so strong and they would end up eating more than just one (wonder what they put in those chips). The commercial went on to encourage viewers to try Lays potato chips and issued a challenge to them that when they did, they wouldn't be able to eat just one.  …And guess what, no one could eat just one.

I issue a similar challenge to you today.  I challenge you to think about all that God has done for you, and try to say “THANK YOU JESUS” just once.  Come on.  Stop right now and think about all that He has done……… The time He healed your body when the doctors didn’t know what to do.  The many times He put food on your table when you didn’t know where your next meal was coming from.  The times He did opened a door for you that even you knew should have been closed.  The time He brought your child back home when you didn’t know where they were. Times when your back was against the wall, bills were past due, and just when you thought all hope was gone, God sent someone by to bless you.  

Betcha can’t say it just once… THANK YOU JESUS!!!  THANK YOU JESUS!!!

Can you imagine ever giving thanks to God and trying to stop at just one? I can’t. When I give thanks to the Lord, the taste, the desire and urge become so strong that stopping after just one is impossible.

 Psalm 34:8  O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.

We need to take more time out and just look at what God does for us on a daily basis.  If we did this, the number of “ Thank you Jesus” would continue to grow and grow so that we wouldn’t have time to worry about anything.  You wouldn’t have time to think about what so and so said, or what they are trying to do to you. You would be so busy praising the Lord that nothing - I mean nothing - would bother you. HALLELUJAH!!!! THANK YOU JESUS!!

 Offer Praise and Thanks to the Lord

(Scripture Reading 2 Chronicles 20:1-30

No matter what you are going through this day, God is bigger than anything you will ever face.  Nothing should stop you from praising Him.  Nothing!

Let’s take a short look at the story of Jehoshaphat as he points out the importance of the praise and thanksgiving we offer to the Lord. Jehoshaphat, king of Judah, was faced with an overwhelming enemy and found great victory by turning to the Lord and trusting Him and giving Him praise. 

Jehoshaphat’s enemy was a vast army that had come to make war against him. Perhaps, that’s how you are feeling (or were feeling before you starting saying THANK YOU JESUS) In light of your own trials and tribulations, you can readily identify with Jehoshaphat’s great concern over this situation. He was alarmed.  Afraid and discouraged he realized that he had no power to face this vast army, and did not know what to do.   Although he did not know what to do, one thing he did know.  He knew that his only hope was to turn to the Lord for help. Amen! He "resolved to inquire of the Lord, and he proclaimed a fast for all Judah". He sought the Lord and prayed: "…We do not know what to do, but our eyes are upon You". There is no shame in telling the Lord you don’t know what to do. You may pretend with others and try to fake it, but you can never fool the Lord. He knows!  Jehoshaphat knew that even though he was powerless over the enemy, the Lord has awesome power: "O Lord…are You not the God who is in heaven? You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. Power and might are in Your hand, and no one can withstand You".  God has ALL POWER!  Thank you Jesus!!

Do as Jehoshaphat did. Go before the Lord with prayer, and fill your heart with praise to the Lord.  Put on some praise music and "to sing to the Lord and to praise Him for the splendor of His holiness…saying, ‘Give thanks to the Lord, for His love endures forever’". You will experience what Jehoshaphat did. For it was when they began to sing and praise that the Lord set the ambushes against the enemy.  So don’t fret over what your enemies are trying to do.  Your focus should be on praises to the Lord.  Your praises to the Lord will destroy the enemy!!  Betcha won’t praise Him just once!

You see, even before the Lord begins to help us with our troubles, we can begin to praise and thank Him for His faithfulness to help those who call out to Him. Don’t wait to see the miracle come to pass.  Shout the victory over your situation now!

We should continue to praise and thank Him as He begins to work, and rejoice even more once He brings us through our time of trouble. "…I will sing of Your strength, in the morning I will sing of Your love; for You are my fortress, my refuge in times of trouble. O my Strength, I sing praise to You; You, O God, are my fortress, my loving God" (Psalms. 59:16-17).

As we delight ourselves in Him, He gives us the desires of our hearts (Psalms. 37:4). "Praise be to the Lord, for He has heard my cry for mercy. The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to Him in song" (Psalms. 28:6-7).

Giving thanks to the Lord is an opportunity for us to adore Him, to worship Him. It also provides encouragement for us as we see just how much God is concerned about and takes care of us. If you want something that tastes and feels really good, give thanks to God. Oh yeah, I betcha can't praise Him just once!  PRAISE HIM!!!!

Isaiah 45:4-6 (60k)


Verse 1-5, 21-22

Praise the LORD, I tell myself; with my whole heart,
I will praise his holy name.  Praise the LORD, I tell myself, and never forget the good things he does for me.

He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases.
He ransoms me from death and surrounds me with love and tender mercies.
He fills my life with good things.  My youth is renewed like the eagles!

Yes, praise the LORD, you armies of angels who serve him and do his will! Praise the LORD, everything he has created, everywhere in his kingdom.  As for me--I, too, will praise the LORD.


By Deaquelynn Williams

 "Stop quarreling with God! If you agree with him, you will have peace at last, and things will go well for you.  Listen to his instructions, and store them in your heart.  If you return to the Almighty and clean up your life, you will be restored.  Give up your lust for money, and throw your precious gold into the river. Then the Almighty himself will be your treasure. He will be your precious silver!  "Then you will delight yourself in the Almighty and look up to God.  You will pray to him, and he will hear you, and you will fulfill your vows to him.  Whatever you decide to do will be accomplished, and light will shine on the road ahead of you.  If someone is brought low and you say, `Help him up,' God will save the downcast.  Then even sinners will be rescued by your pure hands."
Job 22:21-30, NLT


Did you realize that every time you complain about your life, you are quarreling with God? Eliphaz realized it and today's Scripture offers Eliphaz's advice to Job as he sat in self-pity.

Eliphaz's advice offers not only rebuke, but also words of encouragement to Job as well as to us today. I especially like verse 21 which says, ""Stop quarreling with God! If you agree with him, you will have peace at last, and things will go well for you."

Encouragement: Quit complaining... stop quarreling with God and allow Him to bless you like only He can

 Psalms 145:2 Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever.


James 1:17


"The Night Before Jesus Came"


'Twas the night before Jesus came and all through the house  
Not a creature was praying, not one in the house.
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Their Bibles were lain on the shelf without care
In hopes that Jesus would not come there.
The children were dressing to crawl into bed,
Not once ever kneeling or bowing a head
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And Mom in her rocker with baby on her lap
Was watching the Late Show while I took a nap.
When out of the East there arose such a clatter,
I sprang to my feet to see what was the matter.
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Away to the window I flew like a flash
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash!
When what to my wondering eyes should appear
But angels proclaiming that Jesus was here.
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With a light like the sun sending forth a bright ray
I knew in a moment this must be The Day!
The light of His face made me cover my head
It was Jesus, returning just like He had said.

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And though I possessed worldly wisdom and wealth
I cried when I saw Him in spite of myself.
In the Book of Life which He held in His hand
Was written the name of every saved man.
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He spoke not a word as He searched for my name;
When He said "It's not here" my head hung in shame.
The people whose names had been written with love
He gathered to take to His Father above.
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With those who were ready He rose without a sound
While all the rest were left standing around.
 I fell to my knees, but it was too late;
 I had waited too long and this sealed my fate.
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I stood and I cried as they rose out of sight;
Oh, if only I had been ready tonight.
In the words of this poem the meaning is clear;
The coming of Jesus is drawing near
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There's only one life and when comes the last call
We'll find that the Bible was true after all!

Written by Dorte Capel

I come to the Mountain
Called: "The Lord Will Provide,"
When in Christ
I trust and abide

In His provision
I peacefully rest,
For He alone knows
What will work for the best

Not by power or might
Do I get what I seek
It's in Christ I reach
That Mountain peak

Praise God
I can cease to strive
For Jesus is risen,
He is alive

And when in Him
I trust and abide,
He will always
Fully provide

For He is the Rock
Of my salvation,
I need no other
Worldly persuasion

I praise you Lord,
My mighty Mountain,
My everlasting
Life giving fountain

Author unknown to me

Take twelve whole months.
Clean them thoroughly of all
bitterness, hate, and jealousy.
Make them just as fresh and clean as possible.
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Now cut each month into twenty-eight, thirty, or
thirty-one different parts,
but don't make up the whole batch at once.
Prepare it one day at a time out of these ingredients:
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Mix well into each day:
One part of faith,
One part of patience,
One part of courage,
and one part of work.
Add to each day one part of hope,
faithfulness, generosity, and kindness.
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Blend with one part prayer,
one part meditation,
and one good deed.
Season the whole with a dash
of good attitudes,
a sprinkle of fun, a pinch of play,
and a cupful of good humor.
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Pour all of this into a vessel of love.
Cook thoroughly over radiant joy,
garnish with a smile,
and serve with quietness, unselfishness,
and cheerfulness.

You're bound to have a

Contributors to this newsletter:
Dana Ahern – Editing

And all of your prayers and words of encouragement