Thursday, July 27, 2017

Today’s Verse – Isaiah 57:15

For this is what the high and lofty One says — he who lives forever, whose name is holy: “I live in a high and holy place, but also with him who is contrite and lowly in spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly and to revive the heart of the contrite.

Isaiah 57:15

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

Jesus’ coming to earth is wholly and holy consistent with the LORD God who reveals himself in the Old Testament. God is high and holy. God is righteous and majestic. Yet the LORD God is the God of incarnation — the LORD who sees our needs, hears our cries, and comes down to help us. God loves people, especially people who come to him knowing that they need his love and grace. To those who seek him with passion, humility, awe, and reverence, God brings revival that touches the spirit and heart.

My Prayer…

Holy and Righteous Father, thank you for loving me and coming to save me in Jesus. Father, I do come humbly to you asking that you fill me with your Spirit in a more powerful way and revive my heart and stir my spirit to work for your glory in my life today. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

Date: July 28, 2017
From: “Today’s Verse from Heartlight”
via original RSS feed: http://ift.tt/2v3iBD0
Reposted by: To Live Like Jesus Clothing Company
Category: Today’s Verse (NIV)

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Presentations

1 Thessalonians 5:23

Dear Father, all honor to you,

I present my body to you, O Lord. Give it health, energy and stamina. Give it healing, as needed.

I present my soul, my personality to you, my God. Impress on it the characteristics that honor you and are pleasing to other people, for their good.

I present my spirit to you, dear God. May I be wholly joined to you, one spirit with the Lord.

In Jesus’ precious and glorious name. Amen.


Ⓒ 1996-2017 Heartlight, Inc. This material may not be reproduced in part or whole for commercial use without written consent. Heartlight appreciates Eldon Degge and Meridian Publishing for permission to make this available on our website. Praying with Paul is available in a very attractive book that may be ordered directly from Eldon Degge.

Date: July 28, 2017
From: “Praying with Paul from Heartlight”
via original RSS feed: http://ift.tt/2v4KhGZ
Reposted by: To Live Like Jesus Clothing Company
Category: Praying With Paul

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Giving Back

To Live Like Jesus Clothing Company, works with Feeding America (feedingamerica.org). For every dollar donated, the Feed America network of food banks secures and distributes 11 meals to people facing hunger.

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The mess that’s called life

**reposted from May 2015. Maddie is still Maddie. She’s now in grad school figuring out the next steps of this “messy life.” She continues to struggle with directions and singing off key, but she’s living intentionally and can often be found resisting the temptation to overthink. Perhaps you need this reminder today. 

You probably don’t know me. Hi, I’m Maddie. Here’s a glimpse into some of the things that I call my life:

  • There’s a big difference between the energy I’m exerting when I say I’m “going for a run” and when the METRA train pulls into the College Avenue station and I’m a block away from the platform.
  • The only points I got marked off on my driving test (despite not having actually taken a real driver’s ed course) were for not following directions. Evidently I “left the course” when I was trying to back up next to the parallel parking cones. I didn’t even know that was something you could do.
  • I’m pretty much perpetually cold. So naturally, I decided to go to college in Chicago. Two years later and I still never remember to keep an extra pair of gloves in my backpack.
  • Speaking of being cold, I’m currently in one of my dad’s old sweatshirts that I found in the basement. Don’t tell him I’m wearing it. I’m just freezing and despite having carried 140 lbs of clothes home (literally one of my bags was 57 lbs. The lady at the airport made me take some of the clothes out and wear them – no joke, I walked through the airport with 4 shirts on,) I didn’t think to pack long sleeves.
  • I recently ran through the Target parking lot in the pouring rain and without shoes on to pull the car up for my sister and her friend. Except I couldn’t remember where I parked so I ended up running across the whole parking lot. Apparently, the crowd of people waiting in the doorway was thoroughly amused.
  • So there’s this boy…and I’m not even going to finish that sentence because the whole thing is so ridiculous. I’m laughing while I type this, but also I’m terrified that he would somehow see this and somehow know that I’m talking about him.
  • I’m finishing this post ten minutes before midnight on the night that it’s due. I require a lot of patience sometimes.
  • I blasted country music on my way home from babysitting tonight because my siblings don’t let me listen to it when they are in the car. No shame.
  • I’ve learned that with my terrible sense of direction and ability to sing incredibly off key and the way I always seem to end up in the most random situations, that I have to laugh at myself. Life’s too short to take myself too seriously. But I’m constantly reminding myself of that because I think it’s profound but unfortunately, it’s incredibly easy for me to slip back into patterns of overthinking and living in a lull of apathetic monotony. . .

“Ride the roaring wave of providence with eager expectation. To search for the stories all around me. To see Christ in every pair of eyes. To write a past I won’t regret. To reach the dregs of the life I’ve been given and then to lick the bottom of my mug. To live hard and die grateful. And to enjoy it.” N.D. Wilson

Maybe you don’t care about those details of my life. They really aren’t anything spectacular. Hopefully, they at least made you chuckle. But what I really hope they did is got you thinking about some of the simple moments of your life. Moments you brushed by. Things that seemed insignificant. I want us to press pause and just take in this crazy thing we call life.

Life is worth living in light of eternity because I’m not simply living for myself or tomorrow.

I get it. Relationships are strained. People are frustrating. The world is broken. Evil is present. But I think we buy into a lie when we believe that we can’t be fully present and emotionally honest at the same time. Enjoying the abundant life Christ draws us into doesn’t mean that we run from pain or live behind a facade of happiness. It means we are fully embracing every moment, with its tears and laughter and heartache and humor.

My life is messy. Sometimes it feels like a hot mess. Sometimes it’s like the mess on my dorm room floor that should be cleaned but I just haven’t gotten around to it, partly because the very fact that it’s messy asserts my independence and partly because no one is bothered by it. Sometimes my life feels like the mess my smoothie has made all over the kitchen when I’ve forgotten to put the lid on the blender, with the emotional tension of “this is hilarious” and “I might break something (or, more likely, break down) in frustration.”

Life is messy.

But I take comfort in the fact that Jesus didn’t run from the mess but towards it. It’s the very thing he stepped into when He took on flesh. It’s story after story of life that happened in between the parables, teachings, and climactic moments we read about in Scripture.

journals

I challenge you to embrace your story today. It’s not the grand, spectacular moments that make up your life. It is every squirrel that makes you laugh. It is every time you get more of a sunburn than you bargained for because you forgot sunscreen, again. It is every time a child looks at you with their big, wondering eyes . . . and then precedes to throw up on your shirt. It is every time your blood gets hot in anger or your eyes get wet in sadness or you have to look at those darn texting ellipses on your phone waiting for someone to respond. It is every time sweat drips from your forehead onto the bicycle machine because it’s the only one that doesn’t completely intimidate you. It is every ache you feel when reading of the unimaginable suffering of our brothers and sisters overseas or the joy that wells up when there’s an answered prayer within the Body of Christ. It is every time your heart beats, slowly when you are lounging on the couch during a Netflix marathon or faster when someone catches your eye. It’s the sound of every prayer on your lips, every echo of silence in your ears calling your heart to listen to Him, and every stroke of the pen on your journal page that almost always runs out of ink as soon as you sit down.

Take a breath. Look over your shoulder and laugh a little at the mess that is your life. See Jesus in it. It doesn’t mean you’ll always feel it. It isn’t permission to stop sitting with our brothers and sisters in grief and pain. But the Lord’s goodness and faithfulness endures from generation to generation. And that is the reason to be grateful and living physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually present today.

Enjoy your day. You only get one of this day, this time, on this planet. And the Maker of it has already gone before you.

Date: July 27, 2017 at 09:23PM
From: “Internet Cafe Devotions”
via original RSS feed: http://ift.tt/2tIyivi
Reposted by: To Live Like Jesus Clothing Company
Category: Internet Cafe Devotions

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Addicted to Quilting


Today’s category: Wives
Addicted to Quilting
      She learned to quilt on Monday.
      Her stitches all were very fine.
      She forgot to thaw out dinner.
      so we went out to dine.

      She quilted miniatures on Tuesday.
      she says they are a must.
      They really were quite lovely.
      But she forgot to dust.

      On Wednesday it was a sampler.
      She says stippling’s fun.
      What highlights! What Shadows!
      But the laundry wasn’t done.

      Nine patches were on Thursday –
      Green, yellow, blue and red.
      I guess she really was engrossed;
      She never made the bed.

      It was wall hangings on Friday,
      In colors she adores.
      It never bothered her at all,
      That crumbs were on the floors.

      I found a maid on Saturday,
      My week is now complete.
      My wife can quilt the hours away;
      The house will still be neat.

      Well, now it’s only Sunday,
      I think I’m about to wilt.
      I cursed, I raved, I ranted,
      Cause the MAID has learned to QUILT!


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Date: July 27, 2017 at 09:03PM
From: “ChristiansUnite Christian Joke of the Day”
via original RSS feed: http://ift.tt/2vOJt7a
Reposted by: To Live Like Jesus Clothing Company
Category: Joke of the Day

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Embrace the Race God Gives You

Embrace the Race God Gives You

You have a race to run. It’s a race you’ve been given, not one you’ve chosen.

It’s possible you wouldn’t have chosen your race at all, had the choice been yours. Or perhaps you wouldn’t have chosen this particular route. Or perhaps you wouldn’t have chosen your pace. Or perhaps you would have chosen different racing environments, teammates, or coaches. Or perhaps you would have chosen different capacities, strengths, and resources, ones you believe would help you run more effectively. Or perhaps you would have chosen a different distance.

But here you are: in this race, on this route, at this pace, on this terrain, in this climate, with these people, and your strengths, and your limitations, for this distance. Like it or not, this is your race.

And the question is this: Will you embrace your race or keep trying to escape it? What mindset will you choose? For though you may not have chosen your race, you do get to choose how you run it.

You Can’t Escape

Of course, escape is not a real option. However, fantasy provides a seductively compelling illusion of escape. And the world offers you an overwhelming number of fantastic virtual experiences to “relieve” you from the rigorous realities of your race.

By “fantasy” I don’t mean “imagination.” The two are not synonyms. Imagination is the God-given gift to human beings that allows us to fulfill our mandate to be sub-creators and stewards of our little corner of creation (Genesis 1:28–30). Nor by “fantasy” am I referring to the literary or cinematic “fantasy” genres, which, when used rightly, are imaginative sub-creations that can help us better understand and embrace reality.

By “fantasy” I mean something we are all very familiar with: the use of our imaginations for faithless ends — to faux-create an alternative to reality as a means of trying to “escape” reality. You know what I mean: sexual fantasies, anger fantasies, power fantasies, revenge fantasies. These are sinfully preferring a race God hasn’t given us; they are pretending we are in a race of our own choosing — a race in which we get to be God in our own way.

But the problem with such fantasies is that they aren’t real. They get us nowhere. They provide a temporary illusion of happiness, but as soon as we take off the virtual-reality goggles, so to speak, we are the same person, in the same race, on the same route. Nothing has changed, except that we have lost valuable time and burdened ourselves with more discontent and more guilt. We are more unhappy runners than we were before, which often just make us want to escape again.

How to Run Free

There’s only one way to real freedom and real joy: we must renounce our fantasy races, routes, paces, terrains, climates, teammates, strengths, or distances, and embrace the race we have been given. This is how to run free and for joy:

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:1–2)

This text shows us how to run our race and run it well.

1. Learn from great runners.

You are running a unique race, but not an unprecedented race. No one has experienced exactly what you have, but many have experienced the same emotions, temptations, and various other challenges common to man (1 Corinthians 10:13). That’s why the Bible includes a “great cloud” of examples of faithful race-running.

If you want to run well, study other runners. Hebrews 11 provides a helpful starter list, but it is by no means exhaustive. Study the great faith-runners. Examine all aspects of their courses. God did far more abundantly than all they asked or thought (Ephesians 3:20). He will do more for you, too, if you run faithfully.

2. Run as light as possible.

This is your race. God has given it to you. This truth is for your liberation, not your limitation. It’s meant to free you, not constrict you. It’s folly and sin to waste time wishing your race were different or resenting God’s choices. Most of those in the great cloud of witnesses had no idea all that God was doing while they were running very difficult races. Neither do you. But learn from the witnesses that God’s purposes are bigger and better than you can imagine.

Lay aside all the weights of fantasy and escape. Lay aside the weights of past sins and regrets. It makes for miserable, slow running. The cross pays for all the past, and the future joy will make all present difficulties now seem light and momentary (2 Corinthians 4:17). Focus on your race, and only carry what God gives you. His burden is light (Matthew 11:30).

3. Run with endurance.

Endurance is only increased by pushing our current limits. It’s hard, yes. And you don’t know how you’ll ever be able to run like other great faith-runners. Neither did they when they began.

Begin today, and push your limits. When tomorrow comes, run and push your limits. What exhausts you today will be much easier in six months, but then you’ll be pushing different limits. Don’t look at your fantasized ideal of a great faith-runner. Let Jesus make you into whatever runner he wants. You faithfully and prayerfully aim to increase your current endurance limits.

4. Keep your eyes on the prize.

Look to Jesus — he is your greatest example, your Savior, and your greatest intercessor (Hebrews 7:25). He is the source of your greatest joy — your one great prize for running well (Psalm 16:11; John 15:11). A race is only run for a prize. If the prize is not before your eyes, you will lose motivation. If you feel unmotivated to run your race, it may be because the prize has been obscured. First priority: eyes on the prize again, whatever it takes — whatever it takes! And then “run that you may obtain it” (1 Corinthians 9:24).

Embrace Your Race

This is your race. God has set it before you. There is more glory in it than you yet comprehend. How are you going to run?

You can’t change the past; stop trying. There’s much you can’t change about the present; stop trying. There are many fantasies singing like sirens to allure you into the illusion of indulgent escape; stop listening, and don’t let them eat your race time and weigh you down.

Embrace your race. Study the great faith-runners, run as light as possible, push your current endurance limits, and get your eyes on the Great Prize. Run freer, run faster, and run for joy.

Date: July 27, 2017 at 05:02PM
From: “Desiring God”
via original RSS feed: http://ift.tt/2uHuJqE
Reposted by: To Live Like Jesus Clothing Company
Category: Desiring God Blog

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Does John Piper Overplay Bible Literacy?

Does John Piper Overplay Bible Literacy?

Was Piper right to say, “You don’t have a chance against the devil unless you know how to read and understand God’s word”?

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Date: July 27, 2017 at 05:00PM
From: “Desiring God”
via original RSS feed: http://ift.tt/2v43Csa
Reposted by: To Live Like Jesus Clothing Company
Category: Desiring God Blog

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Giving Back

To Live Like Jesus Clothing Company, works with Feeding America (feedingamerica.org). For every dollar donated, the Feed America network of food banks secures and distributes 11 meals to people facing hunger.

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4 Simple Tips for Getting the Most out of Logos Bible Software

In my work as a Logos Pro, I sometimes hear users say, with a resigned, apologetic tone, “I probably use only 5 percent of the capabilities of Logos.” People with lots of responsibility, lots of training, lots of gifting, and lots of experience in ministry or scholarship (or both) all of the sudden grow bashful and embarrassed. They stare at the floor like it’s report card day. They crawl into nearby holes.

They should not. Logos is not that hard to use, because you honestly don’t have to use all its capabilities to be counted as proficient. Don’t believe me? Let me show you how simple Logos is: If you can (1) open books and (2) search them, you’re well on your way. All of the complicated things Logos can do essentially boil down to these two simple tasks.

And if you can (3) type topics and references in the Go box and (4) right-click, you’ll have quick access to all the most significant things Logos can do.

Logos is a pro-level tool. I won’t pretend that there are no complexities in it. But even as a Logos Pro, I mainly do the four things I just mentioned. Here’s how easy they are . . .

Opening and searching

1) How to open books in Logos

To open any book or resource you own, just call up the library by clicking the library icon or hitting Ctrl+L (Windows) or ⌘L (Mac). Then type the name of the book you want, or the series, or the author—anything we’ve tagged about the book should bring it up.

2) How to search books in Logos

To start any search, click the search icon. There are two kinds of books in your library: Bibles and everything else, and the search tabs reflect this.

A) Searching Bibles

You search all Bibles with the “Bible” tab and Greek/Hebrew Bibles with the “Morph” tab. One of the best ways to learn how to run these searches is to look at the sample searches we’ve already provided—like recipes in a cookbook. You can click on any example and run that search.

B) Searching Everything Else

You search everything that’s not a Bible with the “Basic” search tab. Here you can search “Everything” in your library, or just a portion of your library. Searching is that simple.

Two other things

3) How to type topics and references into the Go Box

To explore the Bible using Logos, you don’t have to watch tons of training videos (though you can, for free, at the Logos Pro page). Just launch Logos, type a topic (like “Covenant,” “Love,” or “Abraham”) or a Bible reference (like “John 3:16” or “Isaiah 40”) into the Go Box, and—here’s the hardest part—click the word “Go.”

If you type in a topic, Logos will open up a Bible, some dictionaries (opened to the entry for your topic), and guides linking you to more resources within your library. Type in a Bible passage, and Logos will open several Bibles, a commentary, and guides linking you to more resources.

4) How to right-click in your Bible

There are plenty of websites and phone apps with searchable Bibles. But only the thorough tagging built into Logos can bring you the power to search for all metaphors using “salt” or “light,” all interrogative sentences which are asserting information (in other words, rhetorical questions), or all references to Abraham or Babylon—even those using pronouns.

If you want to search for any of these things or many others, Logos has tagged them in Scripture for you. Just find one example in the Bible, right-click it, and all the tags that apply to that word or phrase will be visible on the right side of the pop-up menu. With a single click, you can select those tags and search for them elsewhere in the Bible.

All the things

Logos is two things and two other things. All the other things grow out of these four basic functions. Don’t be intimidated, or feel that you need to use every last tool or resource. Just start exploring, and you’ll quickly discover the value of studying with Logos Bible Software.


Mark L. Ward, Jr. received his PhD from Bob Jones University in 2012; he now serves the church as a Logos Pro. He is the author of multiple high school Bible textbooks, including Biblical Worldview: Creation, Fall, Redemption.

 

Learn the Secrets of Mastering Logos

In our free 10-day course, we’ll walk you through essential skills that will maximize the power of Logos in your Bible study. Plus, you’ll learn a proven method for understanding the biblical writers’ original meaning—and how to bridge the gap from ancient context to everyday life. Put essential Bible study skills into practice as you work step-by-step through a guided study on the book of Jonah.

Learn more about this free 10-Day Bible Study Challenge or click the button below to get started.

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The post 4 Simple Tips for Getting the Most out of Logos Bible Software appeared first on LogosTalk.

Date: July 27, 2017 at 02:00PM
From: “Logos Bible Software Blog”
via original RSS feed: http://ift.tt/2uC7waM
Reposted by: To Live Like Jesus Clothing Company
Category: Logos Bible Software Blog

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If you would like to share your thoughts and/or comments… please leave your feedback below. All comments and suggestions are not of our own, but that of our readers and customers. These comments may not reflect our (TLLJCC) views, but are meant for discussion purposes to talk about a variety of Christian subjects.

Giving Back

To Live Like Jesus Clothing Company, works with Feeding America (feedingamerica.org). For every dollar donated, the Feed America network of food banks secures and distributes 11 meals to people facing hunger.

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The Ear Hustle Podcast and Remembering Those in Prison

Posted on 07/27/17

The Ear Hustle Podcast and Remembering Those in Prison

The first rule of prison life is to mind your own business. In a world without secrets, eavesdropping on another's conversation—“ear hustling,” as it's known in prison-speak—can get you in serious trouble. But audiences have nothing to worry about when they tune in for Ear Hustle, a new podcast produced from behind the walls of San Quentin State Prison in California. Listening in on these biweekly conversations about prison life may even provide Christians a meaningful new way to respond to the biblical summons to “remember those in prison.”

Winner of Radiotopia's 2016 Podquest competition, Ear Hustle invites listeners to step inside one of America's most notorious lockups to hear its inhabitants' real-life stories, in their own words. It's made possible through a unique collaboration among Earlonne Woods and Antwan Williams, both of whom are currently incarcerated at San Quentin, and Bay Area visual artist Nigel Poor, a volunteer who works with inmates at the prison's media lab.

Each half-hour segment explores a different facet of life behind bars, featuring the hosts' first-person interviews and impromptu “yard talk” sessions with actual prisoners. Woods and Poor overlay these conversations with their own observations and experiences, framing each episode as a casual chat between a respectfully curious outsider and a comfortably self-aware insider. What emerges from their interactions are surprisingly relatable tales of human brokenness and personal identity in a world that feels both foreign and familiar at the same time.

In the lighthearted first episode, for instance, we hear about the domestic squabbles that crop up when two brothers, Eddie and Emile, request to share the same 4-foot-by-9-foot cell, only to discover that they don’t make very good roommates. “Living with someone in an apartment is difficult,” one of them explains, “but living with someone in a box—you have to be compatible in a lot of different ways.” At the end of the segment, Poor jokes about how finding a compatible cellmate at San Quentin seems—to an outsider—a lot like dating in the free world. You have to “court” each other and, if things seem to work out, eventually you have to “pop the question” and see if the other person wants to move in with you.

Things aren’t always so upbeat, though. In the more serious second episode, we hear from a former gangster named Shakur who has worked hard to distance himself from his old gang moniker “Joker.” His new Muslim identity enables him to embrace rather than retaliate against the brother of a rival gang member who murdered his mother and brother decades earlier. Woods ends the segment by commenting on how some in prison will forever see Shakur as “Joker” and expect him to live up to that image. But, he says, “if you’re going to change, the story you tell about yourself has to change—and that’s true if you’re inside or outside of prison.”

Such important gleanings make Ear Hustle more than just a novelty. It’s upbeat and positive, but it’s also honest and gritty. Contrary to what some might expect, it neither glamorizes prison culture nor unnecessarily complains about the miseries of doing time. Each episode is a deeply ethnographic encounter that gently challenges the easy stereotypes we apply to the people we incarcerate. Christians willing to listen to these prisoners’ stories with an open mind may discover that, despite their crimes, they aren't so different from the rest of us.

It's important for us to recognize that Christ's call to pay attention to prisoners doesn't necessarily mean getting involved in political advocacy, signing up to be an in-prison volunteer, or joining a pen pal outreach program. As good as such things are for the church, not every Christian will feel especially led to those kinds of ministries, and that’s OK. What’s not OK is for any of us to become so hardened to the men and women in prison that we forget that they’re still real people with real stories and real voices. Many are growing through their experiences of incarceration, and listening to their stories is a powerful gesture of solidarity—a way to identify with them in their brokenness and to be reminded of our own.

Simply tuning in for a podcast once every couple of weeks may seem like a small thing, but it’s not. In giving time and space for prisoners to speak, we affirm their right to be heard. What’s more, when we take an interest in their damaged lives, we mirror God's interest in ours.

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Date: July 27, 2017 at 12:54PM
From: “Think Christian Articles”
via original RSS feed: http://ift.tt/2v1IXW0
Reposted by: To Live Like Jesus Clothing Company
Category: Think Christian

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If you would like to share your thoughts and/or comments… please leave your feedback below. All comments and suggestions are not of our own, but that of our readers and customers. These comments may not reflect our (TLLJCC) views, but are meant for discussion purposes to talk about a variety of Christian subjects.

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Where to Begin in Bible Reading

Where to Begin in Bible Reading

Whether you’re a new believer or an older saint looking to take up the habit of regularly Bible reading, here is some helpful advice on how to begin.

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Date: July 27, 2017 at 06:52AM
From: “Desiring God”
via original RSS feed: http://ift.tt/2uGFt8u
Reposted by: To Live Like Jesus Clothing Company
Category: Desiring God Blog

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