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Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Fri 26 Dec 2014, 9:03 pm

A SPECIAL ISSUE OF DAILY ENCOUNTER
December 26, 2014 

Dear ACTS Friend,

It’s that time of the year when we remember with thanksgiving, not only the greatest Christmas gift of all time—the birth of the Savior—but also all our many faithful prayer and support partners, as you have made ACTS gospel outreach ministry possible for another year. You are greatly appreciated.

This has been an unusually busy year for us—especially the last few months—as we have been in the process of downsizing and moving into a smaller home, which also included moving our ACTS office as it is also in our home, thanks to the “computerized world.”

In the midst of this we were once again “attacked” via email. According to our server, somebody sent out many spam emails making it appear that they came from acts@actsweb.org
 email. Also both Joy’s and my email accounts were bombarded with endless spam emails. I received a total of 8,586 of these spam email messages, and Joy received over 5,000—a total of over 13,000 spam emails—all in one day! No doubt we are attacked because we are publishing the gospel and message of Jesus Christ and God’s Word. 

Undoubtedly these attacks will continue … and perhaps increase … as we are totally committed to reaching as many people as possible worldwide with the saving gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ—a task that ACTS has been committed to for the past 46 years and, by the grace of God, will continue to do so for as long as we possibly can.

While 2014 has been another encouraging year of blessing, we can’t let up. Daily, Weekend, and Prayer Encounters, combined, have 387,131 worldwide subscribers—375,553+ of these are Daily Encounter subscribers who receive a daily Bible message via e-Mail every weekday of the year. By year’s end we will have sent out more than 97 million Daily Encounters this year alone. Who could have ever imagined this possibility happening even a few short years ago? 

To reach people worldwide and “have them visit” ACTS gospel websites and subscribe to Daily Encounter doesn’t just happen; it takes ceaseless advertising—something we budget for every day of the year. As a result we are communicating the gospel to mega thousands of people worldwide 7-24-365!

Since going online in 1998 we have received 44,085 salvation and re-commitment to Jesus Christ responses from 165 countries that we know about. They have come from Afghanistan to Argentina … Bahrain to Brazil … Cambodia to Cuba … Germany to Guatemala … Iran and Iraq to Italy … Jamaica to Jordan … Netherlands to New Zealand … United Arab Emirates to U.S.A. … Venezuela to Vietnam … Zambia to Zimbabwe! Every month, on average, people from 194 countries and territories visit the ACTS gospel websites.

The words of the late great missionary statesman, Oswald J. Smith, remind us that: “The supreme task of the church is the evangelization of the world,” which is in direct harmony with Christ’s last command/ commission to His followers: “You are to go into all the world and preach the gospel to everyone everywhere.” Thus the last command of Jesus needs to be every Christian’s first priority!”

The reality is that people without Christ are lost—without hope—for all eternity! So let us continue to work together to see as many people won to Jesus Christ as possible. To this task ACTS is totally committed. To continue reaching people for Christ, however, we need your continued prayer and financial support. This is a critical need.

Please help us finish 2014 well! Unfortunately, we have lost a considerable amount of support again this year owing to the state of the U.S. economy. Consequently, we urgently need $23,000 to finish this year with all expenses paid, and be able to make an excellent start in the New Year of 2015! Please note too that we also need many new monthly subscribers who will donate just $5, $10, $25, or more per month to replace our many lost supporters to keep ACTS on the front line of gospel outreach.

In thanksgiving to God for His unspeakable gift to the world at Christmas 2,000 years ago, will you prayerfully consider giving a special sacrificial gift for the publishing of the gospel this month through ACTS International—a gift that will help make a difference for all eternity in the lives of thousands of people? 

A special word of thanks for every donation—be it large or small—as every dollar is critical for keeping ACTS on the front line of worldwide gospel outreach. As you stand with us at this critical time, may God greatly bless and reward you in His own abundant way. May we please hear from you today?

Gratefully in Christ,

Dick and Joy Innes

P.S. "Our greatest legacy will be those who live eternally in heaven because of our efforts.” 

Donations can be sent on the ACTS secure donor site at:
https://actscom.com/donate.php

ACTS International is registered in the State of California as a non-profit 501 (c) (3) tax deductible organization (for U.S. donations).

Or support can be sent via PayPal at: https://actscom.com/paypal.php

Or mailed/posted via check/cheque or Money Order to:

ACTS International
PO Box 73545
San Clemente, California 92673-0119
U.S.A.
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Fri 26 Dec 2014, 1:49 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Celebrate Christmas  

“He [Jesus] was despised and rejected--a man of
sorrows, acquainted with bitterest grief. We turned our
backs on him and looked the other way when he went by.
He was despised, and we did not care. Yet it was our
weaknesses he carried; it was our sorrows that weighed
him down. And we thought his troubles were a punishment
from God for his own sins!"1

Today is Christmas...the day we celebrate the birth of
the Savior ... the One who was rejected by men ... the
One who came from heaven to earth to give his life a
ransom for your sins and mine ... the One who is now in
heaven preparing a place for his followers ... the One
who is coming again to take us to be with him in heaven
forever. How can we ever thank God and the Son of God
enough for so great a salvation?

One of my favorite gospel songs written by Keith Green
expresses my feelings very well. I trust it will yours
too. Let's make this our suggested prayer for today:

    Oh Lord, You're beautiful,
    Your face is all I seek,
    And when Your eyes are on this child,
    Your grace abounds to me.

    Chorus:
    I wanna take Your Word
    and shine it all around.
    But first help me just to live it, Lord!
    And when I'm doing well.
    Help me to never seek a crown.
    For my reward is giving glory to You.

    Oh, Lord, You're wonderful,
    Your touch is all I need,
    And when Your hand is on this child,
    Your healing I receive.

    Oh Lord, please light the fire,
    That once burned bright and clear,
    Replace the lamp of my first love,
    That burned with holy fear.2

Gratefully, in Jesus's name. Amen.

Note: If you have never accepted God’s gift of
forgiveness, for help go to: http://tinyurl.com/8glq9

1. Isaiah 53:3-4 (NLT).
2. Keith Green.

<Smile)))><    
 
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.

Today's Daily Encounter

Will Jesus Come to Earth Again?  

Jesus said, “In my Father's home [heaven] there are
many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I
am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go
and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take
you to be with me."1

Year after year with “tireless regularity and eternal
patience," God reminds the world every Christmas that
he sent his Son, Jesus, to save lost mankind. Christmas
is also God's reminder that Jesus is coming back to
earth for all who have accepted him as their personal
Lord and Savior.

His first coming is an indisputable fact of history.
His second coming to end this world age is just as
certain. According to Bible scholars, there are 1,845
references in the Old Testament and 318 in the New
Testament about Christ's second coming to earth. This
means for every prophecy in the Bible about Christ's
first coming--every one of which was fulfilled in
minute detail--there are eight about his second coming!

Jesus is coming again. God has promised this in his
Word, the Bible. Jesus himself promised it as well. And
all the signs that Jesus and the Bible said would
immediately precede his return are evident today, also
reminding us that Christ's return could be very soon.
If it were today, would you be ready?

Christmas is also a reminder to all Christians that
Jesus has commissioned all of us to spread his message
of salvation to everyone everywhere.2 Jesus said that,
“This gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the
whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the
end will come."3 Never has this been more possible than
it is today because our generation has the greatest
means of worldwide communications the world has ever
seen.

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, how can I ever thank You
enough for Your great CHRISTmas love gift to me and to
the world. In appreciation for all You have done for
me, I surrender my heart and life afresh to You. Please
make me usable and use me in whatever way You will to
be a part of Your plan to spread the gospel to the
world in which I live ... and in some way to people
around the world. Thank You for hearing and answering
my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus's name. Amen."

Note: If you have never received Jesus as your Savior I
encourage you to read God’s Invitation at:
http://tinyurl.com/6k49w or if you would like to make a
recommitment of your life to Jesus Christ, do let us
know by filling in and checking the appropriate box at:
http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php

1. John 14:2-3 (NIV).
2. Mark 16:15.
3. Matthew 24:14 (NIV).

<Smile))><    
 
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Fri 26 Dec 2014, 9:52 am

Today's Daily Encounter

Missing the Point  

“The people of this generation ... are like children
sitting in the marketplace and calling out to each
other: 'We played the flute for you, and you did not
dance; we sang a dirge, and you did not cry.'"1

On a December day back in 1903 at Kitty Hawk in North
Carolina, Orville and Wilbur Wright, after numerous
failures to fly a heavier-than-air machine, made
amazing history. They achieved something that no man
had ever done before. Ecstatic, they sent a telegram to
their sister Katherine: “We have actually flown 852
feet. Will be home for Christmas."

Overjoyed, Katherine ran down to the local newspaper
and pushed the telegram--the greatest news story of the
new century--into the hand of the editor. After reading
it, he smiled and said, “Well, well! How nice the boys
will be home for Christmas."

The religious people of Christ's day who were actually
anticipating his coming as their Messiah also totally
missed the point. They failed to recognize him--and
ironically had him crucified--because he didn't come,
and didn't operate, the way they expected him to.

How sad it is that so many miss the full meaning of
Christmas in that they have never thanked Jesus for
dying for their sins, nor accepted the most profound
and precious Christmas gift ever given ... the gift of
the Savior and his pardon for all their sins and his
gift of eternal life.

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, thank You for the most
wonderful Christmas gift ever given--the gift of your
Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Please use me to share Your
great gift of salvation with as many people as possible
for as long as I shall live. Use me every day to be 'as
Jesus' in some way to whomever You bring into my life,
and grant that they, seeing Jesus in me, will want You
for themselves. Thank You for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully in Jesus's name. Amen."

Note: If you have never accepted God’s gift of
forgiveness, for help go to: http://tinyurl.com/8glq9

1. Jesus Christ in Luke 7:32 (NIV).

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Tue 23 Dec 2014, 8:47 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Willing to Give His Life for His Brother  

“You see, at just the right time, when we were still
powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely
will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good
man someone might possibly dare to die. But God
demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were
still sinners, Christ died for us."1

In the October 2000 issue of Decision magazine, an
anonymous young man wrote in with the story of how he
came to Christ. Many years ago, this young man was
caught in a downward spiral of drugs and alcohol abuse.
His older brother, Terry, had once participated in this
lifestyle, too, but Terry had recently become a
Christian. It had caused an immediate change in his
life. He shared his faith with anyone he came across.  

A few months after Terry's conversion, the supermarket
where he worked was robbed. One of the robbers shot
Terry in the back. As Terry hung between life and death
in the hospital, the younger brother finally turned to
God and began to pray. He finally gave his life to
Christ. He was able to tell Terry of his decision to
receive Jesus Christ as His Savior just a few days
before Terry's death.  

A few months later, this young man got a job at the
same supermarket where Terry had been shot. He began
telling a colleague about his faith in Christ. The
young man remarked that Terry had done the same thing.
Then he added, "Your brother said that he would give
his life if you could come to know the Lord Jesus."2

Suggested prayer, “Gracious God, how can I ever thank
you enough for the gift of your Son, Jesus, who came to
earth as a babe at the first Christmas some 2,000 years
ago, so He could give his life on the cross in my place
to pay the just penaly for all my sins, so that I could
have all my sins forgiven and spend forever in Heaven
with you. And Jesus, because you gave your life fully
for me, please help me to live my life fully for You
and for Your Kingdom. Gratefully in your name. Amen."

Note: If you have never accepted God's forgiveness for
all your sins and His gift of eternal life, I encourage
you to do this today. For help, read the article, "How
to Be Sure You're a Real Christian--Without Having to
Be Religious" at: www.actsweb.org/christian. 

1. Romans 5:6-8 (NIV).
2. "My Brother's Love," Decision, October, 2000, p. 30.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  
  Daily Encounter is published at no charge by 
  ACTS International, a non-profit organization, 
  and made possible through the donations of 
  interested friends. Donations can be sent at: 
  http://www.actscom.com
  
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Mon 22 Dec 2014, 5:44 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

For Those Who Mourn  

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be
comforted."1

A Daily Encounter reader asks: “I have a friend who
grieves her husband's death. He was a Pastor. How can I
comfort her?"

One of the best things we can do for grieving friends
is to be there for them--to give them our presence.
That is, to lend them a listening ear and a shoulder to
cry on as well as to pray for them. Better still is to
weep with those who weep.

This is needed at holiday times, especially so as we
come into the Christmas season. Such times can be
bitterly lonely for the grieving.

What our grieving friends don't need is someone to give
them advice, preach at them, or tell them they
shouldn't feel the way they feel. When we lose a loved
one, we grieve deeply. The pain can be insufferable.
When Jesus' friend Lazarus died, Jesus wept. We need to
do the same when we lose a loved one--and grieve/weep
with our friends when they suffer loss. Rare is the
friend who knows how to weep with those who weep.

Realize, too, that grieving is a process that takes
time. Broken bones heal in six weeks. Broken hearts
don't. They take so much longer to heal, so always be
patient and understanding with grieving friends.

However, if a friend’s grieving continues, say, for
more than a year and it is obvious that they are not
recovering, kindly suggest that they might consider
joining a grief recovery group and/or seeing a skilled
counselor to help them.

For further help, read the article, “Grief and Loss
Recovery" at: http://tinyurl.com/7l5xd

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, thank You for the gift of
tears that helps relieve our pain when we lose a loved
one. Grant that all my grieving friends will know Your
presence and blessing in a very special way at this
time of loss and pain. And please help me to be a
supporting friend and comfort to them. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’s
name, amen."

1. Matthew 5:4 (NIV).

<Smile)))><    
 
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Sat 20 Dec 2014, 4:30 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Accountability  

"For we must all appear before the judgment seat of
Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for
the things done while in the body, whether good or
bad."1

My friend Graham was only 44 when cancer struck him
down. When they discovered the disease, it had gone too
far. Not long before he died I asked him, "What does it
feel like to be 44 and in your situation?"

He sat in silence for quite a while as he pondered the
question. And then he said some things I will never
forget. He felt angry in that there was so much more he
wanted to do with his life and now it was too late. He
felt guilty because he had been too busy too much of
the time and hadn't spent enough time with his wife and
children and now that opportunity was gone forever. And
then, after more thought, he said, "I wonder if I have
ever done anything that has been truly worthwhile with
my life."

Those words certainly made me think--and I’ve never
forgotten them.

According to God’s Word, the Bible, "It is appointed
unto men once to die, but after this the judgment [of
God]."2 The good news is that if we have lived for and
served God faithfully, we will be rewarded accordingly.
If not, we will also be rewarded accordingly.

Hopefully for all our readers when we meet God face to
face, it will be a very exciting time as we hear Him
say to each of us, "Well done, good and faithful
servant. Enter into the joy of your Lord."3

But if we are NOT true followers of Jesus, we will hear
God say something terrible: "Depart from me for I never
knew you."4 Fortunately, none of us ever has to hear
God say this to us for He has provided a full and free
pardon for all of our sins and has the gift of eternal
life for all who accept His wonderful and FREE gift of
forgiveness and salvation.

If you haven't done so already, be sure to accept God's
pardon and His gift of eternal life today. Whatever you
do, don't leave Earth without it! To help you do this
go to: http://tinyurl.com/8glq9

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You that You gave
Your Son, Jesus, to die on the cross to pay the penalty
for all my sins and provide for me a free pardon and
the gift of eternal life. Help me to so live for You
that when I meet You face to face, I will hear Your
wonderful words, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.
Enter into the joy of Your Lord.’ Thank You for hearing
and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’s name,
amen."

1. The Apostle Paul (2 Corinthians 5:10).
2. Hebrews 9:27.
3. Jesus (See Matthew 25:21).
4. Jesus (See Matthew 7:23).

<Smile)))><    
  
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Thu 18 Dec 2014, 5:47 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Making Beautiful Music  

"But we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know
that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance,
character; and character, hope."1

"A piece of black ebony wood was being cut and broken
by a woodmaker. The wood complained but the woodmaker
desisted from bowing to the complaints. He was carving
a flute. The woodmaker seemed to be saying, 'Little
piece of wood. You think that I am hurting and abusing
you but without these holes and cutting, you would not
be able to bring others beautiful music to soothe their
souls and calm their hurts and fears for a time.'"

Pain is the great motivator. It can be and often is
God's wake-up call to help us change and grow. So who
wants to change and grow when everything is going
great? Not me. I only grow when I am uncomfortable with
the way things are or the way I am. And that's the way
it's meant to be. God wants to make "beautiful music"
out of your life and mine. It's up to us to allow him
to do so. The process at times can be painful, but the
end result can be something beautiful.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, I surrender my heart and
life to You. Please help me to become the person You
want me to be so that my life will be an instrument of
peace and harmony in Your hands to touch the lives of
all with whom I come into contact. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’s
name, amen."

1. The Apostle Paul (Romans 5:3-4, NIV).

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
   When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Wed 17 Dec 2014, 11:05 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Making the World Right  

“Will you be made whole?"1

It’s an old parable but still relevant. You’ve probably
read about the pastor who was having a difficult time
on a Saturday trying to prepare his sermon for the
following day. He couldn’t concentrate because his
young son kept pestering him because he had nothing to
do that would interest him.

His dad thumbed through a magazine trying to get an
idea to occupy his son for most of the morning. He
found a map of the world, tore out the page, and cut
the map into many small pieces, mixed them up and,
placing all the pieces facing upwards on the floor,
told his son that if he could get all the pieces
together, he would give him 50 cents.

The son accepted the challenge. In a very short time
the son had all the pieces together. He realized that
on the other side it appeared to be a photo of a man,
so he carefully turned all the pieces over and in not
time had his “jig-saw" puzzle all put together. Placing
a sheet of paper over the finished puzzle, he carefully
turned it over and there was the map of the world!

“Son, how did you get this done so quickly?" his father
asked.

“It was easy," he replied, “on the other side was a
man, I just put him together and turned the paper over,
and the world got right."

The minister smiled and handed his son the promised
fifty cents and said, “And you’ve given me my sermon
for tomorrow too. If a man is right [made whole], his
world will be right."2

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to live a
life that is in harmony with Your will so that my world
will also be right and harmonious. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’s
name, amen."

Note: For help to be sure you’re a real Christian go
to: http://tinyurl.com/8glq9

1. John 5:6
2. Source: Encounter magazine (ACTS Int., Australia),
June-July, 2007, p. 17.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
   When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Tue 16 Dec 2014, 9:56 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

A Sad but Needed Warning  

“Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to
face judgment."1

A Daily Encounter reader asks, “If you have a parent
that died and was an abusive, mean person but you still
love them, is there a way to pray for them to have
another chance and not go to hell forever?"

Sad to say we can only hope that our loved ones made
their life right with God before they passed away. I
don’t want to give anyone false hope as there is
nothing in God's Word, the Bible, that says that anyone
can make a decision to accept God's forgiveness after
they die. As the Bible says, “Behold, now is the
accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation."2

As a poet wisely said:

    Only one life
    ‘Twill soon be past,
    Only what’s done for Christ
    Will last.

The only thing you and I can do--and the most important
thing--is that today we  make absolutely sure that we
have put our life right with God by asking him for
forgiveness for all our sins and accepting Jesus
Christ, God’s Son, as our personal Savior. For help to
do this read the article, “How to Be Sure You’re a Real
Christian" at: http://tinyurl.com/8glq9

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, I admit that I am a sinner
and need Your forgiveness. Please help me to be sure
today that I am forgiven and will spend eternity in
heaven with You forever. Thank You for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’s name, amen."

1. Hebrews 9:27 (NIV).
2. 2 Corinthians 6:2 (NKJV).

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  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
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  Daily Encounter is published at no charge by 
  ACTS International, a non-profit organization, 
  and made possible through the donations of 
  interested friends. Donations can be sent at: 
  http://www.actscom.com
  
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
   When copying or forwarding include the following: 
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Mon 15 Dec 2014, 11:30 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Living with the End in Mind  

“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of
Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for
the things done while in the body, whether good or
bad."1

One night Diane Sawyer was interviewing Billy Graham on
ABC News. She asked the question, “Billy, when you die,
how do you want people to remember you?" Billy said, “I
don’t know what people will think of me, but what I’d
really like is to hear the Lord say to me when I get to
Heaven, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.’" Then
he paused and looked at her and said, “But I don’t
think that He will."2

We would think that if anyone was going to hear this
statement from God, it would be Billy Graham. But what
I think Dr. Graham meant was that while what we do for
God is important, loving God for who he is is
considerably more important and significant that what
we do for God.

I don’t know who first coined the phrase/s, “Living
with the end in mind" and “Living life backwards." But
the idea is that if what we want said of us at the end
of life’s journey--especially by God when we stand
before him face to face--we need to clearly define our
God-given life purpose today. And then we need to start
living now to ensure that we fulfill this purpose. That
is, we need to live life with the end of it in mind.

So my question to you, Dear Reader, is this: “When you
die, how do you want people to remember you and what do
you want God to say to you?"

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, please help me to clearly
define my God-given life purpose and what I want to
hear you say to me when I die--and help me to start
living today with this end in mind. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’s
name, amen."

Note: If you are not sure of your eternal situation, be
sure to read the article, “How to Be Sure You’re a Real
Christian" at: http://tinyurl.com/8glq9.

1. 2 Corinthians 5:10 (NIV).
2. Dr. John Ankerberg, http://tinyurl.com/2x3kxp

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  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  Daily Encounter is published at no charge by 
  ACTS International, a non-profit organization, 
  and made possible through the donations of 
  interested friends. Donations can be sent at: 
  http://www.actscom.com
  
  
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Fri 12 Dec 2014, 9:56 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Getting It Right When Things Go Wrong  Part III  

“In all things God works for the good of those who love
[and trust] Him."1

When things go wrong, as well as having a positive
attitude, being realistic about our situation, and
accepting what has happened, there are several
additional helpful actions we need to take.

Fourth, express emotions. When things have gone wrong
in my life, I've learned not to deny my feelings, so
when I'm grieving, I cry. God not only gave us laughter
to express our joy, but tears to express our hurt and
sorrow. Crying has a healing effect. It soothes the
soul. Plus, when I'm frustrated, I share my feelings
with a friend. Or if I'm angry, I share my feelings
with the person I'm angry at or I write them out and
throw away the piece of paper.

Fifth, give thanks. I constantly make a point of giving
thanks to God for the many good things in my life which
far outnumber my few problems. I give thanks for these
too knowing that God has a valuable lesson for me to
learn. As God’s Word teaches, “Always giving thanks to
God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord
Jesus Christ."2

Sixth, trust God. I have learned to trust God--not
always without doubt or confusion. I don't always
understand why bad things happen. However, one thing I
do understand, while Satan and his forces of evil want
to use my difficult times to try and destroy me, God
wants to use them to strengthen me. The choice is mine.

The only times in my life when I have grown have been
during difficult times. Who wants to change when
everything is going well? Also, if there is any quality
to my writing and other work, it has all come out of
life's struggles.

While I don't believe in quick fixes or simplistic
solutions to life's complex problems, I do know that
God teaches us many lessons through difficult and
challenging times--if we let him. In spite of outward
appearances, I also believe that “in all things God
works for the good of those who love [and trust]
him"1--even if it is eventually!

Can you accept your difficulties as opportunities to
grow and ask God to show you what he wants you to learn
through them? If so, your life will be greatly
enriched, and you can become a happier, healthier
person.

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, please help me to see that
in all my circumstances when I commit and trust my life
and way to You, all things do work together for good.
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully in Jesus’s name, amen."

1. See Romans 8:28.
2. Ephesians 5:20 (NIV)

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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Thu 11 Dec 2014, 11:24 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Getting It Right When Things Go Wrong  Part II  

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is
noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is
lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent
or praiseworthy--think about such things."1

It is true that everybody has times when things go
wrong. These times can either make us or break us. The
following steps will help us to benefit and grow
through these times.

First, attitude. If we respond to our difficulties
positively, determined with God's help to overcome
them, we will. If we react negatively with a defeated
attitude, we will be defeated.

As Zig Ziglar says in his book, See You at the Top,
“Attitude is much more important than aptitude....
Despite the overwhelming evidence which supports the
importance of the right mental attitude, our entire
educational system from kindergarten through graduate
school virtually ignores this vital factor in our life.
Ninety percent of our education is directed at
acquiring facts with only 10 percent of our education
aimed at our feelings--or attitudes.

“These figures are truly incredible when we realize
that our thinking brain is only 10 percent as large as
our feeling brain. A study by Harvard University
revealed that 85 percent of the reasons for success,
accomplishments, promotions, etc. were because of our
attitudes and only 15 percent because of our technical
expertise."

Ziglar also pointed out that William James, the father
of American psychology, stated that the most important
discovery of our time is that we can alter our lives by
altering our attitudes.

Second, being realistic. To grow through our problems
it is also critical that we face them realistically.

A doctor friend of mine tells about a family where the
mother broke her arm. The husband and son had to force
her to the doctor and hold her while the doctor put her
badly broken arm in plaster.

“There's nothing wrong with my arm, Doctor. It's
perfectly all right," she insisted.

“I see," said the doctor setting the badly broken arm.
Several weeks later the woman returned to have the cast
removed and the arm was healed.

“There," said the woman, “look at that. I told you
there was nothing wrong with my arm!"

This woman was of a certain religious conviction which
led her to believe that there was never anything wrong
with her. Fortunately, her family was a little more
realistic. We also need to be realistic about our
problems if we are going to resolve them.

Third, acceptance. Furthermore, whatever happens to us
needs to be accepted. It's no use saying, “If only…."

Several years ago a close relative suffered a massive
stroke and was left partially paralyzed. Doctors felt
that the stroke could have been avoided so it was
extremely tempting to say, “If only we would have
known."

However, it's useless to say, “If only." The family
couldn't go back and do things differently. We all had
to accept the reality of what had happened, pick up the
pieces, and go on.

And as I like to say to my son who is Bi-Polar, “In
your thinking remind yourself that you are living with
a challenge--not a problem." That’s something we all
need to do when things go wrong and we are facing
difficult times. We may not be what we think we are,
but what we think, we are--or will become. Our thinking
makes it so. To be continued….

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, when things go wrong in my
life please help me to have a constructive attitude, be
realistic, and accept what has happened as an
opportunity for both personal and spiritual growth and
therein become a stronger, healthier person as a
result. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully in Jesus’s name, amen."

1. Philippians 4:8 (NIV).

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  
  Daily Encounter is published at no charge by 
  ACTS International, a non-profit organization, 
  and made possible through the donations of 
  interested friends. Donations can be sent at: 
  http://www.actscom.com
  
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Wed 10 Dec 2014, 10:19 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Getting It Right When Things Go Wrong  Part I  

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face
trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing
of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must
finish its work so that you may be mature and complete,
not lacking anything."1

You've no doubt heard about the bricklayer who applied
for time off work for the following reason: “When I got
to the building, I found that the hurricane had knocked
off some bricks around the top so I climbed onto the
roof and rigged up a beam with a pulley and hoisted a
couple of barrels full of bricks to the top of the
building.

“Then I went to the bottom, and holding onto the line,
I began releasing it. Unfortunately, the barrel of
bricks was much heavier than I was and before I knew
what was happening, the barrel started coming down,
jerking me up. I decided to hang on since I was too far
off the ground by then to jump. About halfway up I met
the barrel of bricks coming down fast. I received a
hard blow on my shoulder. I then continued to the top,
banging my head against the beam and getting my fingers
pinched and jammed in the pulley.

“When the barrel hit the ground hard, it burst its
bottom allowing the bricks to spill out. I was now
heavier than the barrel, so I started down again at
high speed. Halfway down I met the barrel coming
up-fast-and received severe injuries to my chin. When I
hit the ground, I landed on the pile of spilled bricks,
getting several painful cuts and bruises.

“At this point I must have lost my presence of mind
because I let go of my grip on the line. The barrel
came down fast, giving me another blow on my head,
putting me in the hospital. I respectfully request sick
leave."

Everybody has times when things go wrong. But when
troubles come, it's not so much what happens to us, but
how we react to it that counts the most. Troubles
destroy some people. Others become stronger. The
difference lies in our attitude, being realistic about
and accepting what has happened, and what we do about
resolving our situation.

To be continued….

Suggested prayer: “Dear God, when things go wrong in my
life, please help me to ‘hear’ what You might be saying
to me and to see what I need to do in order to turn my
situation into a blessing so that I will become more
mature and complete. Thank You for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’s name, amen."

1. James 1:2-4 (NIV).

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  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
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  ACTS International.
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Wed 10 Dec 2014, 12:23 am

Today's Daily Encounter

Nothing Changes If Nothing Changes  

“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and
forever."1

I don’t know if the following story is true or not.
Either way, it has in it a very valuable lesson. “One
day, there was a blind man sitting on the step of a
building with a hat by his feet and sign that read ‘I
am blind, please help.’

“A creative publicist was walking by and stopped to
observe. He saw that the blind man had only a few coins
in his hat. He dropped in a few more coins and, without
asking for permission, took the sign and rewrote it.

“That afternoon the publicist returned to the blind man
and noticed that his hat was full of bills and coins.
He paused awhile and the blind man asked him if he was
the person who had rewritten his sign and, if so, what
did he write?

“The publicist responded: ‘Nothing that wasn’t true. I
just wrote the message a little differently.’ He smiled
and went his way.

“The new sign read: ‘Today is spring and I can't see
it.’

“Sometimes we need to change our strategy. If we always
do what we've always done, we will always get what
we've always got."2

Did you ever stop to think that the New Testament part
of the Bible is almost silent on methodology? I think
the reason is obvious. If it weren’t, some of us would
stick to the same methods used in Paul and Peter’s day
religiously and rigidly. While God never changes and
while his Word never changes, oftentimes our means of
communicating it need to change with the changing
times.

For example, for the first 25 years or so of ACTS
outreach ministry, we used printed literature to reach
the masses. However, as the Internet grew, the sales
and distribution of our printed literature here in the
U.S. collapsed. Had we not changed our method of
communication from the print media to the electronic
media, our organization (at least in North  America)
would now be non-existent. While we have not changed
God’s message of salvation one iota, we needed to
change our method of communicating it with the changing
times.

Remember, “Nothing changes if nothing changes." In
other words, if what we are doing in our relationships,
our family life, and in our churches isn’t working, we
may very well need to change ourselves and/or our
strategies and methods.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to see when
what I am doing isn’t working or bringing about needed
change, if I’m the one who needs to change, or if I
need to change my methods--or both. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’s
name, amen."

1. Hebrews 13:8 (NIV).
2. Author Unknown.

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  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
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  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
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  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * *
  
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Mon 08 Dec 2014, 4:24 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

The Open Door  

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears
My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and
dine with him, and He with me."1

Alton Gansky, in his book, 40 Days, talks about Harry
Houdini who “made a name for himself by escaping from
every imaginable confinement--from straightjackets to
multiple pairs of handcuffs clamped to his arms. He
boasted that no jail cell could hold him. Time and
again, he would be locked in a cell only to reappear
minutes later."

It worked almost every time. “He accepted another
invitation to demonstrate his skill. He entered the
cell, wearing his street clothes, and the jail cell
door shut. Once alone, he pulled a thin but strong
piece of metal from his belt and began working the
lock. But something was wrong. No matter how hard
Houdini worked, he couldn't unlock the lock. For two
hours he applied skill and experience to the lock but
failed time and time again. Two hours later he gave up
in frustration."2

The problem? The door wasn’t locked. All he needed to
do was push on it and it would have opened for him.

Now isn’t that just like so many people who believe
they have to earn their way into heaven through their
own efforts or some man-made religion when all they
need to do is believe in what God’s Word, the Bible,
teaches; that is, believe that Jesus Christ is the Son
of God who died on the cross to pay the penalty for all
their sins, and in all sincerity confess their
sinfulness to God, ask for his forgiveness, and accept
his free gift of eternal life--and repent of their
sinful ways and ask God for his help to live in harmony
with his will.

For help to accept God’s invitation to accept His gift
of forgiveness and eternal life go to:
http://tinyurl.com/6k49w

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You that there is
absolutely nothing for me to do to enter your Heaven
except to admit that I am a sinner and believe that
Jesus died to pay the penalty for all my sins, and to
ask for and accept Your forgiveness and gift of eternal
life. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully in Jesus’s name, amen."

1. Revelation 3:20 (NKJV).
2. Source: Preaching Now, Vol. 6, No. 20,
http://www.preaching.com/newsletter/

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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Sat 06 Dec 2014, 1:28 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Criticism  

“Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words,
and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior."1

“A man was criticized for failing to provide for his
family. Times were hard. He couldn’t find a job so he
decided to go into the fish business.

“After his first catch, he set up shop underneath a
sign he made: ‘Fresh Fish for Sale Today!’ The first
passerby offered a criticism: ‘Why would you use the
word today?  Everyone knows you don't want to sell them
yesterday or tomorrow. That leaves only today to sell
them.’

“So he sawed off that last word and mounted the new
version: ‘Fresh Fish for Sale.’ The next passerby
asked, ‘Why use the word Fresh? Do you mean to imply
that at other times the fish are not fresh?’ Again he
changed his sign. Now it said, ‘Fish for Sale.’

“The next critic said, ‘Why not leave off the words for
Sale? Any numbskull would know that's why you have a
fish market?’ Finally, he wound up with only the word
‘Fish.’ Even then, he still had a critic. The next
passerby said, ‘Why do you need to put up a sign at
all? Anyone who comes within half a mile of this place
knows from the smell what you are selling!’

“Folks who are determined to leave no stone unturned
will find something to criticize about any endeavor we
undertake."2

Criticism: A killer of worthy endeavors and a killer of
relationships!

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please deliver me from the
sin of a negative critical attitude. Help me to become
more and more like Jesus in every way. Thank You for
hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’s
name, amen."

1. Ephesians 4:31 (NLT).
2. Jack Wilhelm. Source: KneEmail by Mike Benson,
www.forthright.net/kneemail/.

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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Thu 04 Dec 2014, 7:57 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Consequences of Sin  

“I could ask the darkness to hide me and the light
around me to become night--but even in darkness I
cannot hide from You [God]. To You the night shines as
bright as day. Darkness and light are the same to
You."1

I have read how, “Two fellows were driving a delivery
truck down a road when they came to a tunnel. The sign
above said: ‘Warning: Maximum Height 10 feet zero
inches,’ so they got out and measured their
truck. Unfortunately, the truck was just over 12 feet
high.

“They didn't know what to do, when finally one of them
looked in both directions and said, ‘I don't see any
police, let's go for it!’"

The result was obvious.

I guess far too many of us knew very well we shouldn’t
do a certain thing or commit a certain sin, but we did
it anyhow because we thought no one was watching.

We may not have seen the immediate effects but we
always reap what we sow--even if it is eventually.
Furthermore, acting wrong too often because no one is
watching can easily become a habit.

As George Dana Boardman wisely said, "Sow an act ...
reap a habit; Sow a habit ... reap a character; Sow a
character ... reap a destiny."

The reality is that we can never hide from God. He sees
all. He knows all. And He judges all unless we confess
our sins and receive His forgiveness. As God’s Word
also says, “Be sure your sin will find you out."2

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me always to
be honest with myself and with You and always do good
and refrain from doing bad, not because anyone is
watching or not watching, but because I believe in
doing right and living in harmony with Your will. Thank
You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in
Jesus’s name, amen."

1. Psalm 139:11-12 (NLT).
2. Numbers 32:23

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  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * * * * * 
  
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
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Today's Daily Encounter

Pegs on Which to Hang Anger  

“Behold, You [God] desire truth in the inward parts,
And in the hidden part You will make me to know
wisdom."1

As a general rule, loved people love people and hurt
people hurt people. And angry people, besides angering
other people, are constantly looking for pegs on which
to hanger their anger.

I was watching a TV interview recently and the person
being interviewed was obviously a very angry person
with a not-too-hidden agenda. This person avoided every
question the interviewer asked and continued to spew
out his bitter negative comments.

This type of person, who has a negative axe to grind,
sees only what he wants to see and hears only what he
wants to hear. And he will twist what he hears to make
it match his distorted perception of reality. Reality
is not on their agenda.

It’s the same with people who have a critical attitude.
They’re angry too and are constantly looking for pegs
on which to hang their anger. They will read into
situations exactly what they want to see and hear as a
way to avoid facing their own reality. They live in
denial--an ultimately dangerous and self-destructive
way to live.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please deliver me from the
sin of denial and help me to be courageously honest
with myself and with You and see in myself any
unresolved anger, a critical attitude, and/or any other
personal problem I may have. And lead me to find the
help I need to resolve and overcome my problems. Thank
You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in
Jesus’s name, amen."

1. Psalm 51:6 (NKJV).

Note: For further help read, “Taming Your Anger," at:
http://tinyurl.com/b439f

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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Tue 02 Dec 2014, 11:21 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Perfectionism  

"Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is
perfect."1

A Daily Encounter reader writes, "I am a Christian, but
here is my dilemma. I see Christians who have such a
joy in the Lord, but I find that Christianity is a very
difficult walk, knowing that it is impossible for me to
achieve perfection. Thus, I constantly fail, which
makes for a depressing life (yes, I'm quite the
perfectionist). And yet logic tells me that if I were a
Christian, I would have the joy of the Lord, and that
life wouldn't be such a battle."

How sad! Just because we are God's children doesn't in
any way take away our human weaknesses and doesn't heal
us of our emotional wounds. Perfectionism is an
emotional issue and, while it will affect us
spiritually, it isn't a spiritual problem any more than
a bad cold is, which can also make us feel depressed.

The word “perfect" in the Bible, can equally be
translated complete, whole or mature. Knowing this can
help us avoid the perfectionism trap. True, we need to
strive for excellence, but perfectionism is an
emotional sickness. It is also a curse, as it keeps the
perfectionist forever in a state of bondage.

Perfectionism usually goes back to one's developmental
years where a child has to "be perfect" in order to
feel loved--but this isn't love. It's conditional
"love" and control and is based on one's performance
rather than on one's being. Therefore, a perfectionist
cannot be happy in this state of mind because nothing
he ever does is perfect and therefore not good
enough--and he can never feel loved for who he is. And
he can be nigh to impossible to live with because those
around him cannot reach perfectionism either.

So what can the perfectionist do to overcome his/her
problem?

First, he needs to see and admit that he is a
perfectionist. Admission is the first step in resolving
any problem. Denial keeps one forever stuck.

Second, he needs to see that perfectionism is an
emotional sickness, and that he needs healing.

Third, he needs to ask God to help him see the root
cause/s of his perfectionism and to lead him to the
help he needs to overcome it. Remember, too, that "God
is merciful--when we have unresolved problems, he gives
us symptoms." Perfectionism is the symptom--or the
fruit--of a deeper root and one needs to resolve that
deeper issue to overcome the symptom.

Fourth, I would encourage him to see a competent
Christian (professional) counselor to help him work
through and resolve his problem; otherwise he will
struggle with it for the rest of his life. 

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to realize
that I don't have to be perfect for you to love me, but
also that you want me to keep growing in both spiritual
and emotional maturity so I can know and experience
your peace in my everyday life. Help me to admit every
area in my life where I need healing and lead me to the
help I need to fully recover. Thank you for hearing and
answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."

1. Matthew 5:48 (NIV). 

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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Mon 01 Dec 2014, 11:44 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Giving Your Best  

"Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your
might"1

One of my favorite quotes is from a former American
president, Theodore Roosevelt, who said: "It is not the
critic who counts; not the man who points out how the
strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could
have done them better. The credit belongs to the man
who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by
dust and sweat and blood; who errs and comes short
again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the
great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause;
who, at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high
achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at
least fails while daring greatly, so that his place
shall never be with those timid souls who know neither
victory or defeat."

Does this mean that we all have to be highly gifted?
Not at all. The important thing is that we use the
gifts that God has given to each of us and use these to
the best of our ability.

Or as Martin Luther King, Jr. said, "If a man is called
to be a street-sweeper, he should sweep streets even as
Michelangelo painted, or as Beethoven composed music,
or as Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets
so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will
pause to say, 'Here lived a great street-sweeper who
did his job well.'"

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to know
what my God-given gifts are, and develop and use them
to the best of my ability for serving You and
mankind--always for Your glory. Thank You for hearing
and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’s name,
amen."

1. Solomon (Ecclesiastes 9:10, NIV).

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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Thu 31 Jul 2014, 10:29 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
The Thrill of Temptation  

Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men [and
women] of courage; be strong."1

Kent Edwards wrote how the tuna fish "were running for
the first time in forty-seven years only thirty miles
off Cape Cod."2 They were apparently biting furiously
so many would-be tuna fishermen in their excitement to
catch a large tuna ignored Coast Guard warnings. What
they didn't realize was that the problem didn't lie in
hooking a tuna but landing it in the boat.

One boat, the Christi Anne, capsized while battling
with a large tuna. The same day another boat, Basic
Instinct, met with the same fate. And Official Business
was swamped when trying to land its catch. The tuna
pulled the boat below the surface of the water. 

What these fishermen didn't realize was the power of
large tuna fish. That's pretty much like what
temptation does to us. At first it can seem very
exciting and enticing but once we take the bait, we're
the ones that get hooked and it can quickly overpower
us and pull us under.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to be
always on guard so that I will avoid the lure of
temptation and not get hooked or entrapped by it. Thank
You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in
Jesus's name, amen."

1. 1 Corinthians 16:13 (NIV).
2. Kent Edwards. Cited in Encounter magazine (ACTS
Australia), January 2007.

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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Wed 30 Jul 2014, 8:05 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

To Be "As Jesus"  

"Then he [Jesus] said to them, 'Watch out! Be on your
guard against all kinds of greed; a man's life does not
consist in the abundance of his possessions.'"1

The story is told how "a wise woman who was traveling
in the mountains found a precious stone in a stream.
The next day she met another traveler who was hungry,
and the wise woman opened her bag to share her food.
The hungry traveler saw the precious stone and asked
the woman to give it to him. She did so without
hesitation. The traveler left, rejoicing in his good
fortune. He knew the stone was worth enough to give him
security for a lifetime.

"However, a few days later he came back to return the
stone to the wise woman. 'I've been thinking,' he said,
'I know how valuable the stone is, but I give it back
in the hope that you can give me something even more
precious. Give me what you have within you that enabled
you to give me the stone.'"2

Some readers may remember the debacle caused by the
death of Anna Nicole Smith several years ago. On a TV
interview I recall hearing Jill Dobson of Star Magazine
saying that Anna Nicole "had everything: money, fame,
attention...." Maybe so, but in reality she had
nothing, for the true riches of life have nothing to do
with fame and fortune.

All sorts of legal battles followed Anna Nicole's
death, including those by other men seeking to gain the
legal rights of her infant child, claiming they were
the father. Do you think this would have happened had
Anna Nicole been a penniless pauper? Not likely.

And how much of Anna Nicole's fortune did she leave?
All of it. Like the rest of us--rich or poor, famous or
infamous. The reality is that only what we send ahead
(via our service in and support of God's work here on
earth) do we gain for eternity--providing of course
that we have put our life right with God before we
leave. I only hope this was true of Anna Nicole.

One of my daily prayers is that God will help me to be
"as Jesus" in some way to every life I touch and that
they, seeing Jesus in me, will want him for themselves.
This for me is the most precious and priceless gift I
could ever give to anyone.

Could you imagine the tremendous impact we Christians
would make on today's world if every one of us would
make and pray the following commitment.

Prayer: "Dear God, I am available today. Please use me
today to be 'as Jesus' in some way, first to my family,
and then in some way to every life I touch. Thank You
for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in
Jesus's name, amen."

1. Luke 12:15 (NIV).
2. "The Wise Woman's Stone," Author Unknown. Cited on
Inspiration Peak, www.inspirationpeak.com

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Today's Daily Encounter

Healing the Whole Person  

"Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for
each other so that you may be healed."1

Medical science, numerous self-help and recovery
programs, and personal experience indicate that
emotional, as well as spiritual growth is an essential
and often lacking ingredient of physical health, inner
peace, and meaningful relationships.

Jesus said, "Do you want to be made well/whole?"2 His
purpose was not only to save us from our sins and give
us the gift of eternal life, but also to bring us
healing and wholeness--not only spiritually, but also
physically, emotionally and relationally.

Sadly, many of us, even those of us who are committed
to the Christian faith, still have some physical ills
that could be healed. Many carry around unresolved
feelings of anxiety, fear, anger, depression, guilt and
shame. Some struggle with addictions, and many have
never found the loving relationships the human heart
craves. These are the issues/stresses that either cause
or greatly aggravate many of our physical ills and
relational conflicts.

As God's Word points out, in order to be healed of
some, if not many, diseases we need to confess our
sins--this includes our sins of the spirit such as
unresolved anger, resentment, grudges, unforgiveness,
bitterness, grief, guilt, fears, lack of trust in God,
and so on.

Speaking personally, when I resolved a lot of buried
grief by getting in touch with it and sobbing it out, I
was healed of hay-fever that plagued me for years. And
when I got in touch with a lot of buried anger from
childhood days, expressed it creatively, and got it off
my chest, I was healed of painful bursitis in both of
my shoulders. When we bury our emotions, where do they
go? We never bury them dead but very much alive and,
what we fail to talk or weep out creatively, we will
inevitably act out in one way or another destructively.

I'm not implying that if we confess all our sins that
we will be cured of all ills such as being bitten by a
malaria mosquito, eating bad food, or of problems that
come from aging. However, if we put into practice and
live by the principles found in God's Word, many of us
would be a whole lot healthier, happier and more
fulfilled than we presently are.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You for the
guidelines that are found in your Word that, if adhered
to diligently, will greatly improve my physical, mental
and emotional health and lead to a more fulfilled life
and loving relationships. Please help me to so live.
Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer.
Gratefully in Jesus's name, amen."

1. James 5:16 (NIV).
2. John 5:6 (NKJV).

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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Fri 11 Jul 2014, 3:34 pm

Today's Daily Encounter
Out of the Shadows  

"I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he
will stand upon the earth."1

The year 1741 was a very depressing one for George
Frideric Handel. His latest opera failed. His Italian
opera company in London was disbanded. That same year
Queen Caroline passed away and the commissions Handel
had received for composing music for royal occasions
all but dried up. A stroke experienced several years
prior not only affected him physically, but affected
his music. It seemed as if he had lost the genius that
made his music so popular.

Late that year Charles Jennens, a poet known by few,
sent Handel a manuscript with a request that Handel set
it to music. When Handel read the copy, the words
gripped him. Suddenly he came alive. Immediately he
began to put the words to music. He labored all through
that night and much of the following day. In fact, he
worked day and night for 22 more days barely stopping
to eat or sleep.

When his composition was finished he sensed that it
would be a true masterpiece. His Messiah was performed
the following year and was an immediate success.

The words that Jennens wrote that inspired Handel and
lifted him out of the pit of despair were about the
Savior: "He was despised and rejected of men. He looked
for someone to have pity on him, but there was no man.
He trusted in God. God did not leave his soul in hell.
I know that my Redeemer lives. Rejoice. Hallelujah!"

I would dare to suggest that it was the period of
disappointment and despair that prepared Handel in
heart and mind to write this masterpiece of musical
genius. How grateful we are that he invested his pain
wisely.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You for putting the
gift of music in the heart and mind of mankind. And
thank You for using George Frideric Handel to give us
the awe-inspiring Messiah.' Help me to find music in my
sorrows and so bless others through my pain. Thank You
for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in
Jesus's name, amen."

1. Job 19:25 (NIV).

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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Thu 10 Jul 2014, 12:15 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

A Powerful Prayer  

"Oh that you would bless me wonderfully."1

One very effective prayer I was taught in my youth was:
"Dear God, today I commit and trust my life and way to
You as I do that of my family (stating their names)." I
have prayed that prayer daily ever since.

To that prayer I have added another powerful prayer
based on a prayer from an almost unknown character,
Jabez, whose name, as far as I know, is mentioned in
only one chapter in the Bible.

He prayed to the God of Israel: "Oh, that You would
bless me wonderfully. Please be with me in everything I
do. Greatly expand my borders and keep me from all evil
and disaster."

The result? "God granted him his request!"

I can't always see how God is leading and blessing me
especially at those times when I feel my prayers don't
go any higher than the ceiling. However, as I look back
over my life I can see how God has blessed me
wonderfully and greatly "expanded my borders" more than
I ever dreamed possible.

In a nutshell: ACTS gospel literature outreach has
expanded to be used around the world by several
thousand churches, missionaries, other organizations,
business and professional people, individuals, and
military, hospital and prison chaplains. And now
through E-mail and the Internet we are receiving
salvation responses almost daily from around the world.
God has used ACTS ministries to help introduce many
thousands to the Savior. You can see how God has and is
answering this powerful prayer in our latest report at:
www.actsweb.org/acts_in_action.php.

I encourage you also to commit and trust your life and
the lives of your loved ones to God and pray the prayer
Jabez prayed--every day. I've done this for many years
and plan to continue doing so every day for as long as
I live. Do this and God will grant you your request
too.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, O that You would bless me
and my family wonderfully again today. Please be with
us in everything we do. Greatly expand our (Christian)
borders and keep us from all evil and disaster. Thank
You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in
Jesus's name, amen."

1. 1 Chronicles 4:10.

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Today's Daily Encounter

Who Are You Working For?  

"Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your
might."1

No matter whose employ we are in every one of us is
working for him or herself. We delude ourselves if we
think otherwise.

I have read that when former astronaut Frank Borman
became head of Eastern Airlines, he was determined to
make the service of his company the best in the
industry. On one occasion he noticed an employee
sitting with his feet perched on a desk ignoring the
telephone which was ringing relentlessly.

"Aren't you going to answer the phone," Borman asked.
"This isn't my department," the employee answered
without any hint of concern. "I work in maintenance."

"Not anymore you don't," Borman barked.

It's the person who is faithful in the little things
who gets entrusted with bigger and better
responsibilities.

That is true in both man's economy and God's. As
Christians in the hereafter we won't be judged for our
sins as Christ took that judgment on himself at
Calvary. But we will be rewarded according to our
faithfulness in serving the Lord here on earth.

It pays to be faithful and dependable in all our
responsibilities. As another has said, "The greatest
ability is dependability." Of equal importance is
response-ability!

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, help me today and always
to be ever ready to serve and glorify You in everything
I am and do. Thank You for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully in Jesus's name, amen."

1. King Solomon, in Ecclesiastes 9:10, (NIV).

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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Tue 08 Jul 2014, 6:49 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Mr. Eternity  

"Therefore He [Jesus] is able also to save to the
uttermost (completely, perfectly, finally, and for all
time and eternity) those who come to God through Him."1

Perhaps you have heard of Arthur Malcolm Stace, who
became affectionately known as Mr. Eternity and lived
in Australia. Early in life he was an alcoholic
derelict who, before reaching middle age, was converted
through a rescue mission and later himself became a
street-corner preacher.

Shortly after becoming a Christian, he heard a sermon
entitled "Echoes of Eternity." He was so captivated by
the importance of the word "eternity" that he began
using his free time to spread the one-word message
across Sydney. "Eternity went ringing through my brain.
Even though I could scarcely write my own name, I felt
the divine urge to write this word."

Fifty times a day for over thirty years, Arthur Stace
wrote Eternity on the sidewalks of Sydney, usually in
the early morning, with white chalk and with faultless
script. When he passed away, the Sydney morning
newspaper carried a story of this unusual man who had
chalked Eternity on the city streets over half a
million times in that metropolis of significant
population. The thought of eternity impresses upon us
the seriousness with which we must regard our soul.2

Multiplied thousands of Aussies saw this message on
Sydney sidewalks. Plus on the eve of the new millennium
celebrations more than a million people, gathered
around the Sydney  Harbor Bridge, saw it emblazoned in
neon lights across the bridge. It was also beamed
around the world to more than two billion TV viewers
and shown again at the closing ceremony of the Olympic
Games later in the year.

Eternity. It is a powerful word with eternal
consequences. In his own simple but profound way,
Arthur Stace was posing the question, "Where will you
spend eternity?"

Eternity! Where will you spend it?

If you should die tonight are you 100% absolutely
certain you would spend eternity in heaven with God? If
not, be sure to read the article: "How to Be Sure
You're a real Christian Without Having to Be Religious"
at: http://tinyurl.com/8glq9.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You that You have
provided the way through the sacrifice of your Son,
Jesus, so that all who believe in and accept Him as
their Savior have Your promise and guarantee of
spending eternity with You in heaven forever. Thank You
for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in
Jesus's name, amen."

1. Hebrews 7:25 (Amplified Bible).
2. Echoes of Eternity, Dennis Kastens, CSS Publishing
Co.

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Today's Daily Encounter

Part Truth: The Most Deceptive Lie  

And he [Satan] said to the woman [Eve], "Has God indeed
said, 'You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?'
And the woman said to the serpent, 'We may eat the
fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of
the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has
said, 'You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it,
lest you die.'"1

When God placed the first man and woman, Adam and Eve,
in the Garden of Eden, he gave them a free will to
choose whether or not they would follow God's ways or
go their own way. He did this because he didn't create
mankind to be puppets on a string. God gave Adam and
Eve total freedom with one exception. That was they
could eat of every tree in the garden but not of just
one tree--the tree of "the knowledge of good and evil."

Then came Satan (the father of all lies, deception and
evil) disguised in the form of a serpent to tempt Adam
and Eve. He said to the woman, "You will not surely
die. For God knows that in the day you eat of it your
eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing
good and evil."2

True, if they ate of the forbidden fruit, they would
know the difference between good and evil, but what
Satan didn't tell them was that if they ate of this
tree, they would be forever confirmed in a state of
evil and that they would die spiritually and be forever
separated from God. Tragically, Adam and Eve took the
bait and ate of the forbidden fruit. Mankind has paid
the price ever since. They were deceived by a part
truth--the most deceptive form of lying--and chose to
believe Satan rather than God.

Satan has been deceiving people the same way ever
since. Every false religion has an element of truth.
This makes their teachings believable to those who
don't know and believe what God says in his Word, the
Bible.

Satan also makes temptation sound very appealing by
luring us with part truths. But he never reveals the
tragic consequences of all sin--the ultimate end of
which is spiritual death and eternal separation from a
holy and just God.

The good news is that God, because he loves us with an
eternal love, gave his own Son, Jesus Christ, to die in
our place on the cross to pay the penalty for all our
sins and defeat Satan's evil purposes for mankind. Be
assured, according to God's Word Jesus is the only way
to God and only he has the gift of forgiveness and
eternal life. Whatever you do, believe and trust
God--never trust or believe Satan and/or man-made
religions that claim there is any other way to God
other than through accepting the Lord Jesus Christ as
your personal Lord and Savior.3

To believe and follow what God says leads to eternal
life. To believe and follow Satan's lies leads to
eternal death which is eternal separation from God in
the place God's Word calls hell. Whatever you do, read
and accept God's only plan of salvation at:
http://tinyurl.com/8glq9.

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please give me a hunger to
study and know what Your Word teaches so I will never
be deceived by Satan's lies. And help me to understand
and accept Your only plan of salvation so that I can
have the assurance that all my sins are forgiven and
that I have received Your gift of eternal life. Thank
You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in
Jesus's name, amen."

1. Genesis 3:1-3 (NIV).
2. Genesis 3:4-5 (NIV).
3. See John 14:6 and John 3:16 in the Bible.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * * *
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.
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Re: Daily Encounter with: ACTS International

Post  Admin on Tue 01 Jul 2014, 10:59 pm

Today's Daily Encounter

Opportunity Lost  

"Almost you persuade me to be a Christian."1

When Mahatma Gandhi was attending university in London,
he became almost convinced of the validity of
Christianity, seeing it as possibly the one true
supernatural religion.

After graduation, he continued to seek evidence that
would persuade him to become a committed Christian.
When he accepted employment in East Africa, and lived
with a family who were members of an evangelical
Christian church, he believed this would be his
greatest source of evidence for the Christian faith.

Gandhi lived with this family for seven months, but
after seeing their causal attitude towards God, hearing
them complain about making sacrifices for Christ, and
becoming acutely aware of their religious apathy, he
became disillusioned.

"No," he concluded, "Christianity is not the one true,
supernatural religion I had hoped to find. A good
religion, but just one more of the many religions in
the world."

While the circumstances were vastly different between
King Agrippa who heard Paul's testimony and rejected
it, Gandhi, too, was almost persuaded to become a
Christian, but didn’t become one because of a
Christian's very poor testimony.

May God grant that that may never be true of me. Every
day I seek to pray the following prayer: (Can I
challenge you to do the same?) 

Suggested prayer: "Dear God, I'm available today.
Please make me usable and help me to be an effective
witness and be 'as Jesus' in some way to every life I
touch today. Thank You for hearing and answering my
prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen." 

NOTE: If you are not sure you are a real Christian,
please don't be like King Agrippa or Gandhi and miss
the opportunity to receive God's forgiveness for all
your sins and his gift of eternal life. For help click
on: http://tinyurl.com/8glq9.

1. Acts 26:28.

<Smile)))><    
  
  NOTE: If you would like to accept God's forgiveness
  for all your sins and His invitation for a full pardon
  Click on: http://www.actsweb.org/invitation.php. Or
  if you would like to re-commit your life to Jesus Christ, 
  please click on http://www.actsweb.org/decision.php to note this.
  
  * * 
  
  Copyright (c) 2014 by ACTS International. 
  When copying or forwarding include the following: 
  "Daily Encounter by Richard (Dick) Innes (c) 2014
  ACTS International.
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