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WORTHY NEWS

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Thu 18 Feb 2016, 10:57 pm

Elaine, look beyond the blessing! 

Psalm 3:8 Salvation belongeth unto the LORD: thy blessing is upon thy people.

Yeshua (Jesus) told His disciples to go into the deep waters and let down their nets for fish. When they did, their nets were filled up with fish to the point of breaking. Being fishermen and businessmen, they may have been tempted to start doing business. I mean, think how much they could make!

But God had a different purpose. The disciples' occupation as fishermen was just a vehicle for God to demonstrate His great power and love. He wasn't blessing them with fish so that they would get excited about fishing -- He was blessing them with fish so that they could get their eyes off their fishing and on to the greater call He had for them! Thankfully, they left the fishing business and went off with the Lord to do great and mighty things.

Too many of us are wrapped up in fish. We seek the Lord for His blessings, prosperity, and success. But true discipleship is focusing not on the blessings of the Lord, but on the Lord of the blessings! 

Elaine, We can rejoice in our blessings, but let's not dwell on them! Let's set our eyes on the Lord and the calling He has for us. When He sees that we have pure and willing hearts, He will be faithful to use us to accomplish His glorious plan!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Phoenix, Arizona 

Editor's Note: We hope to see you on our travels across the United States. Check out our schedule online. 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Wed 17 Feb 2016, 11:59 pm

Elaine, learn sacrificial love! 

Isaiah 53:2-6 For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, And as a root out of dry ground. He has no form or comeliness; And when we see Him, There is no beauty that we should desire Him. He is despised and rejected by men, A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

This pivotal passage of scripture, Isaiah 52 and continuing into Isaiah 53, profiles a suffering servant whom the nation of Israel would not recognize. The spiritual leaders of Yeshua's (Jesus) day were blinded to the messianic passages which pointed to the messiah's role as a humble servant and bearer of sins.

Expecting a conquering king who would vanquish the Romans and set up a restored Davidic kingdom, they completely missed and ultimately rejected the lowly servant that God sent, an unpretentious carpenter's Son from a not-so-respectable town who was virtually unknown until He was about thirty. Yeshua of Nazareth did perfectly fulfill God's messianic qualifications even though He arrived in Jerusalem riding on a donkey and not a majestic horse. [Zechariah 9:9; Matthew 21:7] One wonders what might have happened if he had been recognized and received, since He did come proclaiming that the Kingdom of God was at hand.

Since it was absolutely necessary that the Son of God would die for sins to restore the spiritual plight of the entire world which was separated from God, before He could restore the Kingdom to Israel, Yeshua came preaching repentance and righteousness. He drew large crowds, demonstrating His uniqueness among all of Israel's prophets by performing many amazing miracles and signs by the power of the Spirit, and delivering unprecedented, authoritative teaching which surpassed everything that had ever been heard before. Yet while His ministry was growing, so was His opposition, and His awareness that He was destined for suffering and death. This suffering also surpassed anything we can begin to imagine as the iniquity of the entire world was laid upon Him and He bore it willingly. Yeshua exemplified and revealed the profound connection between serving and suffering by becoming a suffering servant to all mankind. Later testifying that there was no greater love than that a man lay down his life for his friend, He made it clear that love, the deepest love, involves sacrifice.

We say that we want to be like Him. If so, we will be learning and practicing a lifestyle of sacrifice, not caring who sees or knows what we are going through for His sake, because we really just want to make Him happy, because we love Him and are infinitely grateful and full of admiration for Him. It's true for most of us that we naturally seek the spotlight, and are hungry for attention. But if we're truly honest we must admit that the praise of men is a hopelessly futile addiction that we need deliverance from. God's praise is the best praise, and His pleasure in us, the only really lasting kind. 

Elaine, Yeshua pleased His Father by suffering for us. We can afford a little discomfort to make Him happy. Don't you think?
Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Goodyear, Arizona 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Wed 17 Feb 2016, 12:53 am

Elaine, center your life on Him! 

Psalms 37:3-5 Trust in the Lord, and do good; Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness. Delight yourself also in the Lord, And He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, Trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass.

This is one of my favorite passages of scripture. What I've often noticed, however, is that we focus on receiving the desires of our heart. But if we look closely at this passage we have to realize that delighting ourselves in the Lord comes first, centering in Him, delighting in Him as the source and the fulfillment of our desires, and then, also, receiving from Him after your life is centered on Him.

Trust in the Lord...Delight in the Lord...Commit your way to the Lord...the center of the passage is Him.

Remember what Yeshua said, "Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, THEN all of these things shall be added unto you!"

Elaine, the Lord is the source, the heart, and also ought to be greatest object of our desire. There are lots of good things in this world but we have to be careful about what we want and why. When the Lord is our greatest, our first love, we are delighted in Him, every desire of our hearts will be perfectly fulfilled. That's the promise of this wonderful word.

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Goodyear, Arizona 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Tue 16 Feb 2016, 12:25 am

Elaine, walk in HIS righteousness! 

Romans 5:17-19 For if by the one man's offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ. Therefore, as through one man's offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man's righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life. For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man's obedience many will be made righteous.

Are you righteous? If you are truly a believer in the Lord, then you received His gift of righteousness! Righteousness is a gift we receive when we come to saving faith. Righteousness is not something we earn, but rather it's a gift to be received from our Messiah! According to this passage, you have received the gift of righteousness through Him. Not because we have kept the "law" or lived a holy life. It can't be bought with money, or earned through self-effort, or by doing "religious" works. It's a gift!

And in His free gift of righteousness, we have right standing with God! When you walk in His righteousness, then you can approach His throne boldly – expecting the Lord to answer! The devil would love to bring up your sins and keep you bound thinking you can't come to the Lord, however the Scripture is clear, "if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to CLEANSE US FROM ALL UNRIGHTEOUSNESS!" [1 John 1:9] 

Elaine, don't let the enemy bind you in sin – but claim fresh and anew today His gift of righteousness, approach His throne with boldness, and expect the Lord to answer – because you are walking in His gift of righteousness!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Phoenix, Arizona 

Editor's Note: We hope to see you on our travels across the United States. Check out our schedule online. 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Fri 12 Feb 2016, 8:53 pm

Elaine, are you insured? 

Psalms 118:8 It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.

When we first arrived in Israel about twelve years ago, my wife was almost eight months pregnant. We wanted to have everything concerning the birth worked out ahead of time because we knew we'd have so many other things to think about once we got here. So we made certain to pay for our Israeli health insurance coverage even before we arrived, just to be sure we would have no problems.

But something inconceivable happened -- the Israeli government went on strike before our payment information was entered into their records. When we tried to get prenatal care and sign up at the hospital, they had no record of our payment and thus, no way to help us (unless, of course, we were willing to pay an obscene amount of money, money we didn't have). Little did we know that the strike would continue on for four months!

To make a long story short, our baby was born on the kitchen floor of our little Jerusalem apartment. I can honestly say it was one of the most terrifying, yet profound experiences of our lives.

But this got me thinking about insurance. Why do we buy insurance? So that we can be insured that we will get the help or care we need, should we ever need it, right? SURE! Well, we even paid in advance to have that assurance, and we didn't get it when our time of need came!

We are living in crazy times. Times where anything goes -- and anything can happen. And there is really only one insurance company that has been found truly faithful to help us in our time of need through it all. No, it's not Red Cross, or Blue Cross... It's THE Cross! What's more, this insurance doesn't cost us a thing! You'd think more people would jump on this deal, wouldn't you? Yeshua (Jesus) already paid for it with His hard-earned blood sweat and tears, on the cross two thousand years ago.

Elaine, as the world markets continue to shake, there's only one true insurance policy that will protect you from the craziness of the world! So let's be sure to invest in our heavenly insurance today and don't forget to spread the word of it!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Phoenix, Arizona 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Wed 10 Feb 2016, 6:52 pm

Elaine, your victory is near! 

1 John 5:4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.

Growing up, one of my favorite Saturday activities was watching ABC Sports. I can still remember the opening line -- “The thrill of victory or the agony of defeat!” One of the greatest prophets of the Bible, Elijah, experienced his share of victories -- but he also knew that sudden feeling of defeat. If you recall, Elijah was on Mount Carmel, the only prophet of the Lord standing against four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal. (2 Kings 18) When it was all said and done, Elijah was absolutely victorious! But wouldn't you know that in the next chapter, we find Elijah under a juniper tree saying -- “Lord take my life!” (2 Kings 19:4)

We’re so quick to forget the victories that the Lord has given us, aren’t we? There are countless examples of great men of God who struggled this way. If they can go from victory to defeat so easily, how much more are we susceptible to the same attacks of the enemy? We must remember that this is precisely what they are -- attacks of the enemy upon our lives -- attempting to draw our attention away from all that God has done. 

Elaine, if you are finding yourself in the midst of a valley -- try focusing on the victories the Lord has already displayed in your life. And more importantly, focus on the power of victory you can walk with today!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Phoenix, Arizona 

Editor's Note: We hope to see you on our travels across the United States. Check out our schedule online. 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Tue 09 Feb 2016, 8:46 pm

Elaine, feeling empty? 

Ephesians 3:16-19 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.

In one sermon, D.L. Moody held up a glass and asked, "How can I get the air out of this glass?" One man shouted, "Suck it out with a pump!" Moody replied, "That would create a vacuum and shatter the glass." After numerous other suggestions Moody smiled, took out a pitcher of water, and filled the glass. "There," he said, "all the air is now removed."

He used this simple demonstration to explain that living a victorious life is not accomplished by "sucking out a sin here and there," but by being filled with the Holy Spirit.

Later, he said, "I believe firmly that the moment our hearts are emptied of pride and selfishness and ambition and everything that is contrary to God's law, the Holy Spirit will fill every corner of our hearts. But if we are full of pride and conceit and ambition and the world, there is no room for the Spirit of God. We must be emptied before we can be filled."

Elaine, let's begin emptying ourselves today! We need to be filled with God's Spirit so that we can be empowered to do great things! There's no way around it!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Phoenix, Arizona 

Editor's Note: We hope to see you on our travels across the United States. Check out our schedule online. 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Mon 08 Feb 2016, 7:48 pm

Elaine, who do you know? 

James 4:8 Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.

I've been married to my wife for almost fourteen years (we just celebrated our 5000 day wedding anniversary) and it would seem that I know her pretty well. But every once in a while, she says or does something that surprises me -- and I think to myself "Wow, I guess I didn't know her as well as I thought!" The more time I spend with her, the more I get to know her -- her heart, her character -- the more we become intimate.

The same is true with any relationship but especially our most important relationship, that is, our relationship with the Lord.

There's really no going around it. True intimacy doesn't come in an instant. It takes time. If we want to be close to the Lord, we must spend time with Him -- getting to know Him -- His heart -- His character.

Do you feel distant from the Lord? Let's commit to spending some special time with Him -- not only making requests and telling Him about our problems, but maybe listening a little. Perhaps there are some things He'd like to tell us! 

Elaine, there is much work to do for the Kingdom! Let's make intimacy with our Father a top priority so that we are able to get that work accomplished!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Pahrump, Nevada 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Fri 05 Feb 2016, 9:19 pm

Elaine, who can endure it? 

Joel 2:11-13 The Lord gives voice before His army, For His camp is very great; For strong is the One who executes His word. For the day of the Lord is great and very terrible; Who can endure it? "Now, therefore," says the Lord, "Turn to Me with all your heart, With fasting, with weeping, and with mourning." So rend your heart, and not your garments; Return to the Lord your God, For He is gracious and merciful, Slow to anger, and of great kindness; And He relents from doing harm.

In this prophetic passage the critical question is immediately followed by the powerfully convicting answer. Joel prophesies the Day of the Lord, and asks, "Who can endure it?" The next word "therefore", is followed by the prophet's urgent counsel: "Turn to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping and with mourning!" Real repentance -- not some superficial, wimpy, "I'm sorry God", but a deep, sorrowful, heart wrenching cry with fasting, that means business and recognizes the terrible danger ahead -- is what is required.

I have to ask myself, how willing am I to enter into this depth of repentance in order to restore, or deepen my relationship with my Lord, or to cry out in identification with a dying world full of lost souls. Are my emotions and my soul willing to be passionately engaged with the grim reality in and around me? How does this affect my prayer life? or my attitude toward my sins? As I look at this world, I clearly see the Day of the Lord looming on the horizon. This prophecy may never be more applicable than it is now, in our very day.

Elaine, let's take a serious account of things, and allow ourselves to be truly, profoundly moved by what we find. If, as the Lord told us, those that mourn are blessed, then let's not shrink back from what we see in ourselves and in the world around us.."There is a time to mourn"...the Lord will be rejoicing. For He is seeking those who will recognize and deeply repent of their sin...and He longs to forgive and restore us. 

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Pahrump, Nevada 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Thu 04 Feb 2016, 12:30 pm

Elaine, stay on guard! 

Proverbs 16:18 Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.

Anyone who has traveled to Edinburgh, Scotland has probably seen the Edinburgh castle. It is a tower of seemingly insurmountable strength. However, long ago that castle was attacked and seized.

One place in the fortress was protected by its steepness and impregnability, they thought, so no guards were posted there. But at an obvious weak spot was where the most guards were stationed. Wouldn't you know that at an opportune time, the attacking army sent a small band up that unguarded slope and surprised the garrison into surrender. Where the castle was strong, there it was weak.

In his autobiography, Benjamin Franklin wrote: "There is perhaps no one of our natural passions so hard to subdue as pride. Beat it down, stifle it, mortify it as much as one pleases, it is still alive. Even if I could conceive that I had completely overcome it, I should probably be proud of my humility".

I guess the even best of us struggle with pride in our lives -- wait, come to think of it -- it's most likely the best of us that struggle with pride the most! 

Elaine, the enemy of our souls would like nothing more than to cause us to stumble -- especially in the areas we feel most secure!! We need to be on guard. Let's never put our hope in our own strengths, or anyone else's for that matter. We must remind ourselves continuously that it is the Lord who is our strength, and He alone.

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Pahrump, Nevada 

Devotional Source: Jim L. Stegall, "Hardly a Coincidence," Changed Lives: USA Testimonies.

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Thu 04 Feb 2016, 12:23 am

Elaine, coincidence or GOD-incidence? 

Matthew 18:19-20 Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

His nightmares began each day when he awoke. James Stegalls was nineteen. He was in Vietnam. Though he carried a small Gideon New Testament in his shirt pocket, he couldn't bring himself to read it. His buddies were cut down around him, terror was building within him, and God seemed far away. His twentieth birthday passed, then his twenty-first. At last, he felt he couldn't go on.

On February 26, 1968, he prayed for it all to end, and his heart told him he would die before dusk. Sure enough, his base came under attack that day and Jim heard a rocket coming straight toward him. Three seconds to live, he told himself, then two, then...

A friend shoved him into a grease pit, and he waited for the rocket to explode, but there was only surreal silence. The fuse malfunctioned.

For five hours James knelt in that pit, and finally his quivering hand reached into his shirt pocket and took out his Testament. Beginning with Matthew, he continued through the first 18 chapters.

"When I read Matthew 18:19-20," he said, "I somehow knew things would be alright."

Long after Jim returned home, as he visited his wife's grandmother, Mrs. Harris, she told him a night years before when she had awakened in terror. Knowing Jim was in Vietnam, she had sensed he was in trouble. She began praying for God to spare his life. Unable to kneel because of arthritis, she lay prone on the floor, praying and reading her Bible all night.

Just before dawn she read Matthew 18:19-20. Then she immediately called her Sunday school teacher, who got out of bed and went to Mrs. Harris' house where together they claimed the Lord's promise as they prayed for Jim until reassured by God's peace.

Having told Jim the story, Mrs. Harris opened her Bible to show him where she had marked the passage. In the margin were the words -- "Jim, February 26, 1968."

Elaine, I don't think we are nearly aware enough of how crucial our prayers are for the lost and hurting. Sometimes we don't get to see the fruit, but God hears and answers our prayers! Don't be discouraged today -- keep lifting your voice in intercession and expect great things! There's so much work to be done!! 

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Pahrump, Nevada 

Devotional Source: Jim L. Stegall, "Hardly a Coincidence," Changed Lives: USA Testimonies.

Editor's Note: We hope to see you on our travels across the United States. Check out our schedule online. 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Tue 02 Feb 2016, 11:25 pm

Elaine, tear down the idols! 
Judges 6:24-26 So Gideon built an altar there to the Lord, and called it Jehovah Shalom. To this day it is still in Ophrah of the Abiezrites. Now it came to pass the same night that the Lord said to him, "Take your father's young bull, the second bull of seven years old, and tear down the altar of Baal that your father has, and cut down the wooden image that is beside it; and build an altar to the Lord your God on top of this rock in the proper arrangement, and take the second bull and offer a burnt sacrifice with the wood of the image which you shall cut down."

When Gideon was called by God, a mighty man of valor, his first task was to tear down the idolatrous altars of Baal and Asherah at his father’s house. Though he was ready to obey this command, his obedience was mixed with fear, so he destroyed the idols at night [Judges 6:27]. When the men of the city realized it was Gideon who destroyed their idols, their allegiance to Baal and Asherah drove them to demand Gideon's life.

But Gideon's father Joash came to his son's defense, rather than defending his own idolatry, saying to the men, “If Baal was destroyed by Gideon, then let Baal destroy him!” [Judges 6:31] Perhaps Gideon's father was convicted by his son's obedience. In any case his own love for Gideon and his courage to stand against the people of the town saved Gideon's life and must have encouraged him and given him faith to continue.

God saw in Gideon a man of faith with the potential to overcome his fears. So the Lord called him and brought him into a challenging situation which drew Gideon's fear into the light and gave him an opportunity to face it and overcome it. He used Gideon's father's courage which seems to have passed to his son after the idols were destroyed. But Gideon still needed to grow in trust to fully accomplish what God had called him to do.

Like Gideon, we are destroying the idols in our lives, and have the potential to even bring conviction to the lives of our parents, so that they too might be restored to worshiping the true God. Because of their love for us they may come to our defense and find themselves serving the Lord's purposes and even being restored to Him. Gideon's fear did not prevent him from obeying the Lord, and this is why he affected his father and was called a mighty man of valor. 

Elaine, this story of courage and restoration can inspire us in several ways. First, we must not allow our fears to prevent our obedience. Second, our obedience is likely to inspire repentance and loyalty in those close to us. And third, the Lord sees past our fears and He calls us according to His deeper knowledge of who we are as overcomers in Him.

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Pahrump, Nevada 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Mon 01 Feb 2016, 9:37 pm

Elaine, where's your chutzpah?! 

Proverbs 28:1 The wicked flee when no man pursueth: but the righteous are bold as a lion.

During his first year of graduate study at the University of California at Berkeley, George B. Dantzig arrived late for a statistics class. He saw two problems on the blackboard. Assuming they were homework, he copied them and a few days later turned in his solutions. One Sunday morning six weeks afterward, the professor appeared at Dantzig's door, waving a manuscript. It turned out that the professor had merely written two examples of unsolvable problems on the blackboard. The manuscript was Dantzig's work readied for publication. George Dantzig later became known as the father of linear programming.

Had this guy gotten to class little earlier to hear the professor say that these problems "couldn't be solved", sadly, he might have never even have tried to solve them -- probably like all the other students in the class. We humans give up way too easily -- someone says it can't be done and we don't give it a second thought! The word "chutzpah", in Hebrew, means nerve or gall. We often view those words in a negative light but God is calling us to to GREAT things and be bold for Him -- and most of the time those things require some chutzpah! 

Elaine, we need to be a bit more tenacious as believers. Is there something you feel God is calling you to do but others have been less than encouraging? Go for it! Be bold! Don't let others dictate what you should or shouldn't be doing -- leave that to the Lord!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
San Diego, California 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Fri 29 Jan 2016, 4:30 pm

Elaine, sometimes its hard to understand adversity -- but there's a purpose!

Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

I suppose one of the hardest questions to answer is: "Why do I have to deal with so much adversity?!"

Quite honestly, one of the best answers I've ever come across was written by C.S. Lewis in his book, Mere Christianity. Lewis likened God's use of adversity to walking a dog. If the dog gets its leash wrapped around a pole and tries to continue running forward, he will only tighten the leash more. Both the dog and the owner are after the same end: forward motion. But the owner must resist the dog by pulling him opposite of the direction that he wants to go. The master, sharing the same intention, but understanding better than the dog where he really wants to go, takes an action precisely opposite to that of the dog's will. It is in this way that God uses adversity!

We really don't like being pulled and corrected by the Lord -- but when we understand there's a greater purpose involved, then we can pass through adversity with hope, expectation and steadfastness knowing these events are for our greater good!

Elaine, let's learn from the trials and tribulations we go through because God has a purpose in them. We may not enjoy it, but when all's said and done, enduring trials faithfully will produce perseverance, character, and hope. And hope will not disappoint us for the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit...[Romans 5:4-5] We truly can trust in the God who loves us with an everlasting love because He knows the direction we need to go, AND He knows exactly how to get us there!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Los Angeles, California 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Thu 28 Jan 2016, 11:26 am

Elaine, you're covered! 
Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Have you ever heard how a pearl is formed? It is truly fascinating. A foreign object, often a grain of sand, somehow makes it's way into the tightly sealed crack of an oyster. Instead of spitting out this irritating object, the oyster covers it with layer upon layer of a substance secreted from it's own body. After months or even years, a beautiful pearl is formed. The longer the pearl stays in the oyster, the more valuable it becomes.
What a picture of God's mercy toward us! The Lord doesn't spit us out when we come to Him! "We are accepted in the beloved!" God has every right to cast us out because of our sin but instead, He brings us into His body and covers over our sin with His beautiful covering!
When God found us we were nothing more than an irritation but by His grace He keeps us under His covering, so that we can be made into something value to His Kingdom! God is using our time now under His covering to conform us into His image!
Elaine, let's cherish this time under God's covering and take this opportunity to grow more and more beautiful -- that we attract many for His Kingdom in these trying times!
Your family in the Lord with much agape love,
George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Los Angeles, California 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Wed 27 Jan 2016, 9:57 pm

Elaine, who is truly your enemy? 

Romans 12:21 Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.

A story is told of Peter Miller, a plain Baptist preacher of Pennsylvania, in the days of the Revolutionary War. Near his church, lived a man who maligned the pastor to the last degree. The man became involved in treason and was arrested and sentenced to be hanged. The preacher started out on foot and walked the entire way to Philadelphia roughly seventy miles away to plead for the man's life. George Washington heard his plea, but he said, "No, your plea for your friend cannot be granted." "My friend!" said the preacher. "He is the worst enemy I have." "What!" said Washington, "you have walked nearly seventy miles to save the life of an enemy? That puts the matter in a different light. I will grant the pardon."

Like this precious pastor, although we don't go out looking for enemies, we somehow seem to acquire them just by doing the work of the Lord! Many of you know how many times we've been attacked by hackers since we moved to Israel. These people probably spend weeks -- not hours, not days -- but weeks or even more trying to figure out pass codes and configurations in order to destroy our sites and all the work of the Lord going on there! It can be extremely upsetting to see someone steal away years of your hard work like that. You just want to know who?! and why?! and what did I do to deserve this?! 

Last Thursday and Friday, quite a few people sent emails asking where their Worthy Brief was. Last Wednesday night, hackers hijacked my email credentials and sent out 300,000 spam messages in my name! This happened just before a speaking engagement in California. Even though our servers were never hacked into, hackers were able use my good name to send spam -- in essence using my good reputation in order to flood the web with spam.

I'm sure many of you are experiencing your share of enemy assaults too and can relate to what I'm saying! But how should we react to these assailants? Should we curse them and hunt them down to get our revenge? This pastor had every earthly right to be satisfied with this man's sentence. After all, this man probably destroyed his reputation -- perhaps even his entire ministry! But this wise pastor saw right through the man. He realized that the offense committed did not originate with the man who slandered him. This man was merely a pawn in the hands of a cruel and crafty adversary, Satan himself. Clearly, it's our ultimate enemy, Satan, who is out to slander us, to steal from us, hurt us, lie, kill and destroy us and he'll use any means possible to do it.

In the same way, we must realize who is truly our enemy and come against him the best way we can -- determine to press forward for God's Kingdom even more than before! 

Elaine, when we strive to do the work of the Lord, we will undoubtedly gain some enemies! But we must ambush our archenemy who is manipulating these people and situations! How? By praying more! Learning the word more! Sharing the Gospel more! Forgiving more! Becoming wiser and stronger in the Lord! Becoming more like Yeshua (Jesus)! Press forward toward the Kingdom of God today -- your great reward will be with Him!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Los Angeles, California 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Tue 26 Jan 2016, 12:43 pm

Elaine, build and repair! 

John 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

The word for builder in Hebrew is "bo-neh". It is also translated repairer. When our Messiah came 2000 years ago, He came to repair lives -- to do a complete restoration of all that is broken in this world. Interestingly, the Hebrew words for son, "ben" and daughter, "baht" both also come from the word "bo-neh".

Perhaps you are a son or daughter from a "broken" family. Yeshua (Jesus) came to give you power to be restored to a family which can never be broken.....His family. Receiving Him and believing on His Name gives you a new identity as a son or daughter. You become a son or daughter of God. The sorrows of your family life here may endure for a season, but....

Elaine, no matter how broken that family or your life in this world has been, the Lord God has made a way for you to be completely restored and repaired through the resurrection life of His Son. Receiving this resurrection life through faith adopts you immediately into a new family whose destiny is eternally perfect loving relationship. This is a miracle which may seem too good to be true, yet the deep longing in each of us for loving family life was placed there by God, and He did it because He fully intended to fulfill that longing, more than any of us can yet imagine.

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Los Angeles, California 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Mon 25 Jan 2016, 10:02 pm

Elaine, it's time for the blossoming! 

Isaiah 35:1-2 The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose. It shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice even with joy and singing: the glory of Lebanon shall be given unto it, the excellency of Carmel and Sharon, they shall see the glory of the LORD, and the excellency of our God.

One thing I absolutely love about Israel is that fruit grows everywhere in abundance. Delicious citrus fruit, mango, pomegranate, grapes, cactus fruit, avocado -- and much much more! It's common to see people people pick and eat it as they walk by. And it doesn't taste like your average western fruit either. It seems to be especially sweet. It must be because God has blessed the land it's grown upon!

Today marks the Jewish holiday of Tu B' Shvat and the beginning of the new year for trees. It is customary to plant trees and partake of the fruits of the Land to commemorate the occasion. God has declared that fruit shall blossom from the desert of our dry land here in Israel and boy, has it ever!

I love this passage. It reminds me that even the dry desert areas in our lives can come to life! The Lord declares that He will restore the years the locusts have eaten! No matter how desolate we've been, this is the time to blossom!

Elaine, our lives are meant to flourish in the Lord! Let's ask Him to touch us in a special way this season. May we spring to life and blossom abundantly. May that which was once dead spring to life and may everyone around us may see the evidence of the glory of God!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Los Angeles, California 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Wed 20 Jan 2016, 3:34 pm

Elaine, He's in the midst of the fire! 

Daniel 3:17-18;23-25 If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up."

And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished; and he rose in haste and spoke, saying to his counselors, "Did we not cast three men bound into the midst of the fire?" They answered and said to the king, "True, O king." "Look!" he answered, "I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God."

Continuing our study of First (Old) Testament appearances of the "preincarnate" Yeshua (Jesus), we find ourselves in the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. These three men refused to bow and worship another God besides the God of Abraham, Issac and Jacob. While they knew that God was able to deliver them, they also knew that He might choose not to do so–and whether He delivered them or not had no influence on their loyalty to Him. These three faithful Hebrews were convinced that idolatry was a non-starter for them, no matter what! Their unquestionable loyalty brought wrath upon their heads. Nebuchadnezzar's violent rage moved him to increase the furnace fires seven times!

Elaine, isn't this the crux of the matter for all of us who live by faith? Whether He delivers us or not??!! Wasn't this the Lord's example in the Garden of Gethsemane? And don't we know that this kind of resolution will increase the intensity of the attacks against us? Our faithful obedience and loyalty UNDER PRESSURE is the most powerful testimony we can give of our love and faith in God. And one way or another, Yeshua (Jesus) will be standing there in the fire with us, just as He was with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. They were delivered. But what really stands out is that they didn't make their deliverance an issue with God. Will you?

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Sonoma, California 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Tue 19 Jan 2016, 7:09 pm

Elaine, is there anything too HARD for the LORD?

Genesis 18:1-2 And the LORD appeared unto him in the plains of Mamre: and he sat in the tent door in the heat of the day; And he lift up his eyes and looked, and, lo, three men stood by him: and when he saw them, he ran to meet them from the tent door, and bowed himself toward the ground,

Genesis 18:13-14 And the LORD said unto Abraham, Wherefore did Sarah laugh, saying, Shall I of a surety bear a child, which am old? Is any thing too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.

Genesis 18:17-18 And the LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?

John 8:56-58 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad. Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.

The (Old) Testament contains numerous appearances of God in the form of a man, sitting, speaking, even eating with those that love Him.

Abraham was sitting in front of his tent on the plains of Mamre, when the LORD (Yehovah -- Yud Hay Vav Hay) came to him and declared the fulfillment of a promise He had made to him many years before, saying that through Abraham's seed the world would be blessed! (Genesis 12:7; 13:15-16, 15:18, 17:7-9) For a long season, the Patriarch had patiently waited for the fulfillment of this promise, but it wasn't until the LORD came to him personally, speaking face to face, that the fulfillment of this promise drew near. No wonder Yeshua (Jesus) told the Jews of his day that Abraham rejoiced to see Him! It was the day that the promise -- the long awaited promise -- was coming to pass!

Elaine, the visitation of God, the Creator of the universe, to this Earth, in the form of a man, seems preposterous to normal human understanding; yet we know it is true, historical, and certain because God has revealed it to us by His Spirit and His Word. Because of this astounding Incarnation, every other promise of the Word is absolutely reliable. Faith and patience are all that are necessary for us to receive them. Is there anything too hard for the LORD? Follow the example of our Father Abraham and stand on the WORD He has given you. Every one of His promises will be fulfilled....... in His time!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Sacramento, California 
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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Tue 19 Jan 2016, 12:07 am

Elaine, the Lord is sending you! 

Judges 6:11-14 Now the Angel of the Lord came and sat under the terebinth tree which was in Ophrah, which belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, while his son Gideon threshed wheat in the winepress, in order to hide it from the Midianites. And the Angel of the Lord appeared to him, and said to him, "The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor!" Gideon said to Him, "O my lord, if the Lord is with us, why then has all this happened to us? And where are all His miracles which our fathers told us about, saying, 'Did not the Lord bring us up from Egypt?' But now the Lord has forsaken us and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites." Then the LORD turned to him and said, "Go in this might of yours, and you shall save Israel from the hand of the Midianites. Have I not sent you?" 

Biblical Hebrew uses a grammatical form called "s'michut". This form joins two words together to form a single word form. We have this in English: for example, a door and a knob are two nouns, which are used to form the word "doorknob", a compound noun. This form of joining nouns is found in Judges 6:12. The expression, "Angel of the Lord" is rendered, "angel-YHVH"; (Yud-Hay-Vav-Hay); in modern English -- "angel-Yehovah". Then, suddenly, the narrative changes from "angel-Yehovah" to simply, "Yehovah". Here we see another appearance of YHVH in human form in the Old Testament. The God-Man, Yeshua in a "pre-incarnate" appearance. 

When Gideon was called to fight the Midianites, he felt inadequate, unequipped and the weakest among his brethren -- but the Lord called him "you mighty man of valor"! Isn't it always interesting how God calls the weak things of this world to confound the natural wisdom of the world [1 Cor 1:18-21]? And sometimes He sees right through their perception of themselves, and calls them "mighty" ! 

Gideon, in the midst of overwhelming circumstances, felt as many feel today: weak, abandoned by God, wondering, "Where are you LORD?" But when the Lord suddenly shows up to call us to be part of His solution, what will we say? What will we do? Because He knows who we are deep inside, and He knows how to empower the weak to perform His works for His glory. 

Elaine, if you find yourself asking, "Where are you LORD?", you might want to prepare yourself to be the answer to the problem. Because He might just "show up" and give you an "impossible" commission, then equip you with the strategy for victory. Even you, alone, with the LORD, are an army that no enemy wants to face!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Sacramento, California 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Sun 17 Jan 2016, 11:16 am

Elaine, be broken! 

Psalms 51:17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.

The word contrite in Hebrew is 'dakah' which means one that is crushed to pieces. Paul wrote of being a 'living sacrifice' holy and acceptable to God. Being a living sacrifice means we often can walk off the altar. To be a continual living sacrifice we need to renew our minds day to day! Let your mind be renewed -- off the things which are worldly and onto those things which are Godly. When our minds are focused on those things above, on His holiness, His righteousness, His grace, and His mercy -- we realize that we can always be closer to Him! We understand what Isaiah meant when he said, "our righteousness is nothing but filthy rags before the Lord."

When God provided for Himself the perfect sacrifice, His Son, 2000 years ago -- His heart bursted! His heart was cut through -- cut for you! God desires you to be a living sacrifice and a necessary ingredient is a heart that has been cut through by God's sharp knife. When you allow your heart to be continually cut through by God's Spirit, then your life will be a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable before Him! 

Elaine, it's wonderful what God can do with a broken heart, especially when we give Him all the pieces!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Days Creek, Oregon 

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Elaine, claim your promises! 

2 Corinthians 1:20 For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us.

In a traditional Jewish marriage, a contract known as the 'ketubah',(which means 'that which is written', in Hebrew) is signed be both the bride and groom. Originally, it included the price of the bride, the promises that the groom must keep and the rights to which the bride is entitled.

The ketubah was the unalienable right of the bride. It promised that the groom would work for her, honor her, support her and maintain her in truth, but most importantly, that he would never leave her side all the days of her life.

Unfortunately, these days, this contract is often broken. There are many who haven't kept their promises like they should. But each of us who know the Lord, have been given a ketubah of sorts -- it's the Bible. Within our ketubah, are all the promises of God -- and God is not a man that He should lie! 

Elaine, we are His bride! Let's claim the many promises He has made to us and stand in faith, knowing that He will keep His Word!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Medford, Oregon 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Mon 11 Jan 2016, 12:31 pm

Elaine, it's time to volunteer! 

2 Corinthians 9:7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.

A wise man once said, "There's nothing more powerful than the heart of a volunteer". Webster describes a volunteer this way -- one who renders a service or receives a conveyance or transfer of property without giving valuable consideration.

It's so easy to get into the mindset that serving God is a chore, it's our job, our duty -- we give valuable consideration to our giving. The fact of the matter is that God loves a cheerful giver. He loves a volunteer. When I think of that verse, the first thing that comes to my mind is monetary giving, but God wants us to cheerfully volunteer every good thing He has so mercifully allowed us to have –- things we often take for granted -- our time, our energy, our abilities, our talents, our homes, our cars, our families –- all that we have – all that He has cheerfully given to us!

Elaine, let's make a point to volunteer some of these things to the Lord this week. Let’s begin to bless the Lord and those around us!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Roseburg, Oregon 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Sat 09 Jan 2016, 10:48 pm

Elaine, come, let us go to the mountain of the Lord! 

Matthew 14:23 And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone.

There were times that Yeshua (Jesus) separated himself from the multitudes -- and there are times when we need to separate ourselves from our lives and ministry, and spend some time with our Lord.

I love how Yeshua climbed a mountain. It made me think of an interesting analogy. Picture the shape of a mountain. It starts out wide at the bottom -- the higher we climb, the narrower it becomes -- and the more we must stay close to the center. As we go even higher yet, there's less room to move to the left or the right -- and there's less and less ground that can be compromised -- the more focused we need to be and the less we can afford to be distracted. The higher we go, the less room we have to fool around!

Whatever you may be dealing with, you may just need to separate yourself and climb up to spend time with the Lord -- get centered on Him and focused on what He's calling you to. 

Elaine, God wants us to learn to climb to the top and focus all of our lives on His will! Let's take out some time this weekend to try it!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Portland, Oregon 

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Re: WORTHY NEWS

Post  Admin on Thu 07 Jan 2016, 4:29 pm

Elaine, get on your sweat pants!

2 Timothy 2:3-4 You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier.

In Hebrew, the word for hardness is “kosher”. Interestingly enough, the word "kosher" also means "fitness", as from a workout in the gym. Yes -- it's a workout to serve the Lord in this world -- but God has called us to it!

These days, many people are working out intensely to beautify and strengthen their bodies. A lot of them are obsessed with appearance and youthfulness. It has virtually become a religion to be beautiful and/or "ripped", and people are willing to make serious sacrifices for the sake of their bodily condition.

Believers are called to a different kind of "workout" which can be equally or even more intense. Our "obsession" isn't with our bodies, but with our spirit. It is easy and "natural" to become caught up in the affairs of this life, even to adopt the worldly obsession with physical appearance. Yet our "workout" calls us to minimize the attention we give to worldly affairs, and to endure the hardness of spiritual warfare and service.

Are we aware of the reality of the eternal life which belongs to us, and of ALL its implications? Our life in this world is incredibly short, yet filled with tremendous opportunity for the Lord and our place in the world to come. If we want to please Him, (and we ought to think about why we would), we will make the most of our time, and work out with the greatest spiritual energy possible. That will involve saying no to worldly priorities and concentrating on spiritual ones.

Elaine, if we have been chosen to be soldiers for God’s great army this is no small thing! We will increasingly disentangle ourselves from prioritizing worldly pursuits, and be seeking first the things of the Kingdom of Heaven. When we do that we have two promises: earthly provision for all of our needs [Matthew 6:23], and treasure in Heaven [Luke 18:22]. Let's get free from the cares of this life and get focused on eternal blessings!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love,

George, Baht Rivka, Elianna & Obadiah
Spokane, Washington 

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