John 8:31, "Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;"

To be a disciple, a pupil, a student of the Lord and His Word - what a desire and goal for each of us! Christ invites men to follow Him to become what He desires them to become! As we desire to "Follow Jesus," it will entail some effort on our part - some sacrifice, some time, some commitment that must be surrendered and submitted to Him.

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The past year seemed to fly by for me. I'm excited about the new year! I love the new opportunities that a new year brings with it. However, there can be a tendency to head into a new year with trepidations. You may be frustrated by the fact that you didn't accomplish what your intentions were last year. Or you may be overwhelmed by what you feel we have to achieve this new year.

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"For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord." (Luke 2:11). Merry Christmas to each of you! As families gather today to exchange gifts, sing songs, and enjoy the fellowship and the food, let's be sure to take time to worship Him who is the reason for the day. Though we are aware that Christ was probably not birthed on December 25, we take this day to commemorate and celebrate His coming.

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Have you ever read a passage in the Bible several times and keep reading it in the same mindset you always have? Unfortunately, there are several passages that I thought I understood, only to learn later that I did not fully grasp them in the context in which they were written.

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One of the television channels I find myself frequenting is focused on car restoration. I find it amazing to see the rusty heaps of metal that people find and then restore them to works of beauty. At the beginning of each show, I'm a classic skeptic, thinking: "It's too late; this mess is too far gone!" But by the end of the process, my opinion has changed. In the hands of the right person, what appeared to have been a total loss has turned into a thing of beauty. The restoration is successful!

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