Archive for The Point Is

The Point Is … Do You Know the Story? 4/1/2021

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by James Collins

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.Luke 2:11 

There once was a very famous professor of chemistry. This man discovered several industrial chemical compounds, and he wrote many books on chemistry. As a result, he became financially well-off and retired. In his retirement, he became a guest lecturer at colleges and universities.  

As the professor got older, he developed poor eye-sight. His poor vision made it difficult to drive. Therefore, he hired a chauffeur. Over the years, the professor and his chauffeur became best friends.  

The chauffeur drove the professor to dozens of speaking engagements. He heard the professor give the same speech hundreds of times. One day, on the way to another speaking engagement, the chauffeur said, “Professor, I believe I could give your speech myself; I’ve heard it so often.” The professor said, “I’ll bet you $50 you can’t.”  “You’re on,” said the driver.  

The chauffeur stopped the car and the two exchanged clothes. They got to the college and they went into the lecture hall. The chauffeur was dressed in a tuxedo. He sat at the head table. The President of the College stood up and introduced him.  

The chauffeur stood up and he gave the professor’s speech without missing a word. It was perfect. It was as if the professor gave it himself.   

There was a standing ovation when the chauffeur finished. The President of the College got up and said, “You know, we are so fortunate to have such a fine resource with us tonight, and since we have a little extra time, let’s have some questions and answers.”  

A student stood up in the back and asked, “Professor, the element, strontium when combined with radioactive isotopes does not produce a normal reaction. Why is this?” The chauffeur just stood there for a moment. He had a nervous look on his face. Finally, he said, “That’s just about the dumbest question I ever heard. In fact, it is so dumb I bet even my driver could answer that question!” 

The point is: Sometimes we hear something so many times that we can lose the meaning. How many times have you heard the Christmas story? I’m sure you could stand up in public and tell the story. You have heard it hundreds of times. Even non-Christians know the story of Mary’s unexpected pregnancy, Joseph’s confusion, and the visits by angels. Everyone knows the story of Caesar’s tax, the trip to Bethlehem, and the Christ-child born in a stable. We’ve heard it thousands of times. We even hear Linus tell the story every year on A Charlie Brown Christmas. We all know the story. 

Could it be we have heard the story so many times it has lost its meaning. We think we know all there is to know about the Christmas story, but maybe we don’t. Maybe we don’t understand Christmas.   

Christmas is God coming to earth in the person of Jesus Christ. Christmas is Jesus being born to save us from our sins. Christmas is the Savior of mankind living with mankind. Christmas is God with us.  

I am sure that you know the story, but do you know the Savior. I am sure you know about Christmas, but do you know Christ? The Christmas season brings familiar sights and sounds. Don’t let the familiarity of the season cause you to lose sight of the baby in the manger.  

Get to know Him this Christmas.

The Point Is...

James Collins

James Collins

James Collins is pastor, columnist, and author. You can write to him by email at james@thepointis.net.

 

 

 

 

 

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The Point Is … Going Home 3/11/2021

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by James Collins

For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. Philippians 3:20

On an overcast day, we gathered to mourn the death of Tammy Combs. Her metallic gray casket sat toward the front of our hometown church. Flower arrangements of pinks, yellows, reds, and purples surrounded it.  

The church that had seemed so big to me as a child, now seemed so small. It was crowded with people who had known her, who had loved her, and who still did. The pews filled up quickly. Latecomers sat in folding chairs in the aisles and along the back wall. Those who couldn’t find a seat stood in silence in the foyer. Grief is shared best in silence. 

The old preacher walked up on the platform and stood tall in the pulpit behind the casket. He read Scripture in a baritone voice, “…that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.” His funeral sermon was filled with words of comfort. He ended by saying, “And she lives on.” 

When the preacher finished speaking, a recording of Tammy singing The Old Rugged Cross was played. Throughout her life, Tammy often sang in church. Now in her death, she sang there again. 

I grew up with Tammy, but I hadn’t seen her in years. We stayed in touch only through Facebook. It took her funeral to bring me back home. Over twenty years had passed since I had stepped foot in our hometown church. After high school graduation, I joined the U.S. Army. Trips back home became less frequent. Everything seemed so different. The place had changed. 

The church was filled with people from my youth. I didn’t recognize many of them. Some didn’t recognize me. Age has caught up with us. Everyone seemed so different. The people have changed. 

Somehow, I feel different. When I left home, I was lost. Then Jesus Christ found me, and He saved my soul. I am different. I have changed. 

There is an old saying: You can’t go home again. I think I understand that saying a little better now. The old hometown will never again be the same place I left all those years ago. I will never again be the same boy who left all those years ago. That home exists only in my memory. 

When I think about home, I don’t think so much about a place. When I think of home, I think of people. I think about my wife, Amanda, and our children. They make home – home. At least, on this earth. 

However, this world is not my home. The Bible says that if you are a believer in Jesus Christ, your citizenship is in heaven. When I think of my future home, I think of a Person. I think about Jesus. He makes heaven – heaven. 

The point is: All of us are pilgrims on a journey in this land. Someday, if the Lord tarries, each of us will die and go to our eternal home. If you belong to Jesus, then you’ll be with Him in a home called heaven. If you don’t belong to Jesus, then you’ll spend eternity separated from Him in a home called hell. The choice is yours. 

The death of my friend, Tammy, has made me homesick. Not for a small town in Southeast Oklahoma. No. I am homesick for heaven. I am homesick to be with Jesus.  

My heart longs for home.  

The Point Is...

James Collins

James Collins

James Collins is pastor, columnist, and author. You can write to him by email at james@thepointis.net.

 

 

 

 

 

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The Point Is … Perfume on a Pig 3/4/2021

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by James Collins

The rich and poor meet together: the Lord is the maker of them all. Proverbs 22:2

“Collins,” the old sergeant snorted. “Putting you in that fancy dress uniform is like putting perfume on a pig.” The old sergeant was Sgt. 1st Class Luster, my platoon sergeant. Behind his back, we called him, Luster the heart-buster, because he ran us ten miles a day. He had served multiple tours in Vietnam. He was a hard man, but he knew his stuff. That was why I asked him to inspect my dress uniform. I had to look my best.  

The year was 1992. I was a young enlisted soldier in the U.S. Army. Somehow, I had been chosen to have dinner with the President of the United States, George H.W. Bush. To this day, I still don’t know how I was chosen. Maybe it was White House charity. Maybe some politician said, “I’ve got an idea that will make us look good with the common folk. Let’s find the dumbest redneck in the armed forces and send him to an official state dinner.” It must have been something like that because I knew I didn’t belong there from the moment I entered. 

The place was full of big-shots – corporate presidents, heads of state, politicians who hadn’t been caught yet, and Hollywood celebritiesSylvester Stallone walked past me with a famous swim-suit model clinging to his arm. Tom Brokaw stood behind me in the entrance line.  

We were ushered past a reception area. President Bush grabbed my hand and gave me a firm handshake. A photographer snapped our picture – a photograph which still hangs in my office today. 

 A man in a tuxedo escorted me to my table. I was seated across from President Bush next to a man from Boston. I think he owned Massachusetts or something. He had more money than the Kennedys. 

“What’s your racket, young man?” he asked striking up a conversation with me.  

“I’m an artist.” I could tell my answer surprised him.  

“What kind of artist?”  

“I’m a painter. I paint men and women.”  

“Is your work well known?” 

“Yes, it is in some of the most respected places,” I said, which wasn’t a lie. I painted MEN and WOMEN on the bathroom doors at Fort Knox.  

When it was time to eat, I panicked. There were four forks. I didn’t know which one to use. So, I watched George H.W. and the rich guy next to me. I just used whatever fork they used. The meal was elegant – seven courses. If I had to pay for it, I am sure it would have cost my mortgage.  

All evening long, even in my Luster the heart-buster inspected uniform, I felt out of place. If you put perfume on a pig, the pig still stinks. I was just a penniless boy from the country. I was worried one of those elegant sophisticates would discover an imposter was among their midst. I didn’t belong. We had nothing in common. 

Yet, when President Bush died in November of 2018, I realized we did in fact have something in common – the Lord is our Maker. Both millionaire Bush and minimum-wager Collins have the same Creator. The Lord is the maker of us all.  

The point is: God has given life to both the rich and the poor. No matter where you fall on the income scale, you owe your existence to God Almighty.  

Since He has given life to you, wouldn’t it be wise to live for Him?  

It makes more sense than putting perfume on a pig. 

The Point Is...

James Collins

James Collins

James Collins is pastor, columnist, and author. You can write to him by email at james@thepointis.net.

 

 

 

 

 

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Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening Devotionals Podcast – Listen live at 6am Pacific and 6pm Pacific. Visit http://anchor.fm/russell-sherrard any other time to listen to all of our episodes. Now on EDIFI.APP. Download from GooglePlay or AppleStore and start listening.
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The Point Is … Stop Global Whining 2/25/2021

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by James Collins

Do all things without murmurings and disputings: That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world. Philippians 2:14-15

Uncle Elmer lay in a bed in a darkened hospital room. He was attached to a maze of tubes, wires, and machines. Near the end of his life, he struggled for consciousness one last time. Next to him was my Aunt Maimy, his wife of 55 years. Elmer reached for the hand of the person he had known for more than five decades of marriage. 

Maimy, is that you?” he asked. 

“Yes,” she said. “I’m here.” 

Maimy, you have been with me for 55 years of marriage.” 

“Yes, I have been with you.” 

“I remember in our first year of marriage when a fire destroyed everything we owned, you were there with me.” 

“Yes, I was with you.” 

“I remember when I lost my job and was unemployed for over a year, and you were beside me.” 

“Yes, I was with you.” 

“And several years ago, after my first stroke, you were with me then.” 

“Yes, I was with you then.” 

“Now, in these final months, as I lay dying in this hospital bed, you’re with me again. 

“Yes, dear, I am with you.” 

Uncle Elmer paused for a moment and said, “Maimy, you’re nothing but bad luck.” 

Do you know someone like that? Do you know someone who finds something to complain about no matter how good things are going? 

There is a woman in our church, Lois Steam, who complains about everything. “I don’t know how anybody can praise Jesus in this icebox,” she said two weeks ago. “What is this, a church or a walk-in freezer?” The following Sunday she quipped, “It’s so hot in here that you could poach eggs in the baptistry.” 

Lois would complain if her ice-cream was cold.  

“You shouldn’t talk so loud when you preach. I’m not deaf,” Lois said a while back. When I toned it down she yelled, “Speak up! You, soft-spoken nitwit!” 

I was tempted to rebaptize her and hold her under for a while. 

“We need more young people around here,” Lois said when I first came to the church. “Why are all these kids running in the halls? Why do we have all these kids in in here?” she said last week. 

Lois makes me want to fire the church and form a congregation search committee. 

The point is: Complainers can drain the joy not only out of their own lives, but also out of the lives of everybody around them. Clearly, complaining is no laughing matter to God. God hates complaining. The Bible says to do everything without murmurings and disputings. In other words, stop complaining! 

The next time you feel like complaining, resist the urge and look for a way to pay a compliment. Who knows, if you do that enough, you may be cured of your complaining? 

The Point Is...

James Collins

James Collins

James Collins is pastor, columnist, and author. You can write to him by email at james@thepointis.net.

 

 

 

 

 

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Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening Devotionals Podcast – Listen live at 6am Pacific and 6pm Pacific. Visit http://anchor.fm/russell-sherrard any other time to listen to all of our episodes. Now on EDIFI.APP. Download from GooglePlay or AppleStore and start listening.
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The Point Is … What Do You See? 2/18/2021

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by James Collins

…For the Lordseeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lordlooketh on the heart. 1 Samuel 16:7b

My nine-year-old son, John, has quite an imagination. He loves to build things with Lego bricks. The other night he said, “Look at this rocket ship I built.” He held up what looked like a square glob of tiny, multicolored, plastic bricks. To me, it looked more like a toaster than a rocket ship. 

John spends hours in his room playing with Legos. He builds everything from tractors to towers, from cars to castles, from submarines to space stations. He has quite an imagination.  

When I look at those toy plastic bricks, I see toy plastic bricks. When John looks at them, he sees knights slaying dragons, airplanes flying across the sky, and heroes on a jungle quest. In his imagination, Legos are not Legos at all. They are robots, Batmobiles, and skyscrapers.  

What people see in their minds and what they see outside are two different things. 

Not too long ago, John saved his money to buy a new Lego set. He saved allowance, birthday, and Christmas money. When he had enough for the set he wantedI took him to Walmart.  

As we pulled into the parking lot, we noticed a family sitting in an old station wagon. The father sat on the hood. He held a cardboard sign that read, “WILL WORK FOR FOOD.”  

The station wagon looked to be on its last leg. The family inside looked dirty and disheveled. They appeared to be living in their car. 

I looked over and noticed John was staring at the family. Neither one of us said anything. 

We went inside and made our way back to the toy aisle, but John didn’t seem interested in Legos. He looked up and asked, “Can I use my money to buy those people some food?” I choked back tears and answered, “Sure.” John said, “I can’t wait to tell them about Jesus. 

There was an excitement in our steps as we filled up a cart with groceries. We hurried through the checkout, loaded up our car, and drove to the end of the parking lot. John leaned out the window with two bags of groceries, and said, “Sir, I want to give you some food.” The man put down his sign, took the groceries, and said, “Thank you.” John said, “You are welcome, and Jesus loves you.” 

To tell the truth, most likely, I would not have noticed the needy family in the station wagon. I am proud of my son. He sees things that I miss. 

What people see in their minds and what they see outside are two different things. 

We need to see people as God sees them. 

The point is: God looks at people differently than you and I look at people. We look at people on the outside. God looks at the heart. It doesn’t matter if you are freshly bathed and wearing a three-piece suit, or dirty wearing a t-shirt, and torn jeans, God looks at your heart.  

The Bible says that the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked. God loves everyone, but all have sinned, and come short of His glory. Every person we meet is lost without Jesus. The only cure for the sin-sick heart is the Lord Jesus Christ. Without Christ, even people who look nice on the outside go to hell. 

When you look at people, what do you see? 

Do you see somebody who needs Jesus?  

Tell somebody about Him today.

The Point Is...

James Collins

James Collins

James Collins is pastor, columnist, and author. You can write to him by email at james@thepointis.net.

 

 

 

 

 

Inspirational Image of the Day
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Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening Devotionals Podcast – Listen live at 6am Pacific and 6pm Pacific. Visit http://anchor.fm/russell-sherrard any other time to listen to all of our episodes. Now on EDIFI.APP. Download from GooglePlay or AppleStore and start listening.
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This site contains Third Party Advertising, using online behavioral tracking technology. Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we believe will add value to our readers.
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The Point Is … Use me 2/11/2021

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by James Collins

but stand thou still a while, that I may shew thee the word of God. 1 Samuel 9:27b

I am lonely for your company. For the past few years, you have promised to spend time with me. This year was no different. Why do you let others take your attention away from me? 

Most resent being used, but I don’t. I want you to use me. 

Use me and will be many things to you. 

When you are weary, I will be your strong staff. 

When you sit in darkness, I will be your glorious light. 

When you are hurting, I will ease your pain. 

Use me. 

When you are discouraged, I will whisper messages of hope. 

When you are carrying a burden, I will give you rest. 

When you are confused, I will offer clear advice. 

Use me. 

When the storms of life rage around you, I will be your anchor. 

When you are alone, I will be your friend. 

When you need knowledge, I will be your teacher. 

Use me. 

When you are afraid, I will calm your soul. 

When you are lost, I will help you find your way. 

Take hold of me, I will keep you from stumbling. 

Use me.  

Use me. I am crying out for you to use me. Use me and I will change your life. Use me and I will change the lives of those around you. Use me and I can change the world.  

I am the Bible. Long ago, you put me away. Over and over, you have said that you were going to bring me back into your life. Around the beginning of each year, you come back to meBut in no time, something else has your focus and you neglect me. A day becomes a week. A week becomes a month. A month becomes a year. Until I am no longer really a part of your life.   

The point is: I want you to use me. I’m only asking for a few minutes of your time each day. Start now. I am right where you left me.  

Pick me up.  

Open me.  

Use me. 

The Point Is...

James Collins

James Collins

James Collins is pastor, columnist, and author. You can write to him by email at james@thepointis.net.

 

 

 

 

 

Inspirational Image of the Day
========================================
Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening Devotionals Podcast – Listen live at 6am Pacific and 6pm Pacific. Visit http://anchor.fm/russell-sherrard any other time to listen to all of our episodes. Now on EDIFI.APP. Download from GooglePlay or AppleStore and start listening.
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This site contains Third Party Advertising, using online behavioral tracking technology. Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we believe will add value to our readers.
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The Point is … What In the World Are You Talking About? 2/4/2021

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by James Collins

And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come. Matthew 24:14

The frying pan was held high in her right hand as she talked to me. My wife, Amanda, usually holds something in her hand when she talks to me – a rolling pin, a hairbrush, nunchucks. I think she holds something to emphasize her point. Last Tuesday night, she was holding a frying pan.  

Amanda opened the dishwasher door, turned around, held up the frying pan and asked, “What in the world are you talking about?” I was sitting at the kitchen table working on my sermon for Sunday. I said again, “I am worried about my message Sunday. I think it’s going to be the worst sermon in the world.” She said, “That’s impossible. That will never happen. You preached the worst sermon in the world last week.” 

As soon as Amanda finished boosting my self-confidence, she stepped back. She obviously forgot the dishwasher door was open. She tripped, threw the frying pan in the air, and fell backwards. As Amanda was falling, she reached out to grab the countertop. She missed and slammed her right thumb down on the corner of the open dishwasher door. Somehow, the dishwasher door cut a deep gash in her thumb. 

Amanda grabbed her bloody hand and said something spiritual. I think she said, “Oh Lordy!” I grabbed a towel and applied pressure to get the bleeding to stop. Not long after we arrived at the emergency room. 

Walking in, holding her bloody hand, Amanda said, “I need to see a doctor. I need stitches.”  

The lady behind the counter looked at Amanda’s hand and said, “We just ordered queso dip and chips.”  

Another lady, a nurse in the back, said, “I just love the queso from El Charro. It’s a good thing you ordered it before they closed.”  

“I know, right?”  

“Do you know what else is good? Their guacamole. I could eat a gallon.” 

Amanda was bleeding to death and they were talking about chips and dips. 

In the same way, the world is bleeding to death, but Christians are too busy talking about unimportant things. This world is dying and going to hell, and we’ve got the Way to save them, but most Christians act like the good news of Jesus Christ is a secret.  

The point is: Jesus commanded us to share the gospel with others (Matthew 28:19; Acts 1:8). He ordered us to take the gospel to the world (Matthew 24:14). He will hold us accountable for how we shared the gospel when we stand before Him (2 Corinthians 5:10).  

You may be thinking, “I wouldn’t know what to say.” It’s simple. Just tell them that Jesus, the Son of God, came to earth and died to forgive your sins. Everyone who believes in Him is saved from the penalty of their sins and will spend eternity with Him in Heaven. Believing in Christ means to turn away from your sins and turn to Him. Confess Jesus as your Savior and Lord. 

You could be the person that God uses to have an eternal impact in someone’s life, or you could just talk about chips and dips. 

When was the last time you shared your faith? When was the last time you told somebody about Jesus?  

What in the world are you talking about? 

The Point Is...

James Collins

James Collins

James Collins is pastor, columnist, and author. You can write to him by email at james@thepointis.net.

 

 

 

 

 

 

========================================
Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening Devotionals Podcast – Listen live at 6am Pacific and 6pm Pacific. Visit http://anchor.fm/russell-sherrard any other time to listen to all of our episodes. Now on EDIFI.APP. Download from GooglePlay or AppleStore and start listening.
========================================
This site contains Third Party Advertising, using online behavioral tracking technology. Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we believe will add value to our readers.
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The Point is … Periodically 12/24/2020

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by James Collins

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:23   

understand people today don’t believe in spanking kids, but I was raised in a different time. Spanking was a daily occurrence for me.  

Corporal punishment was still in the public-school system when I was growing up. I used to get spankings at school. At my school, they used the board of education. They used a wooden paddle.  

When I was in the eighth grade, we were studying the periodic table of elements in science. I struggled memorizing the periodic table. I was as lost as a goose in a snowstorm.  

Who came up with those abbreviations anyway? Some of them made sense. For example, hydrogen is H. Oxygen is O. But some of them don’t make any sense. Take potassium for example. Potassium is K. There isn’t even a K in the word potassium. Sodium is NA. I thought NA meant “not applicable.” Silver is AG. Isn’t AG the abbreviation for agriculture?  

In the eighth grade, I could not remember the periodic table for the life of me. There was a big test over the periodic table coming up. So, I decided to cheat. I took an ink pen that was made of clear plastic. I copied out the entire periodic table on a very small piece of paper. Then I rolled up the piece of paper and put it inside the pen. All I had to do was look at the pen for the test answers. 

My plan would have worked if not for my cousin, Bubba. Bubba’s real name was Jimmy Joe Jeff Johnny Paul Ray Elmer Junior. But that was a mouthful. We called him Bubba. Bubba was in Mr. Alford’s Science Class with me. He was sitting in the desk behind me on the day of the test.  

When the test started, things were going great. I was filling in all the blanks on the test thanks to the periodic pen. Suddenly, Bubba whispered, “What’s the abbreviation for Mercury?” I tried to ignore him because I didn’t want to get caught.  

He was persistent. He asked again louder, “What’s the abbreviation for Mercury?” I still didn’t answer.  

Finally, Bubba stood up and said, “Mr. Alford, my pen quit writing. Can I borrow James’ pen?”  

Mr. Alford walked over, took the pen, and marched me out into the hall. Mr. Alford had my pen in one hand and the paddle in the other. It was a bad day after that. 

I cheated, got caught, and had to pay the price.  

The point is: There are consequences when we sin. When we disobey God, there are consequences. God is just and because He is just, He must punish sin.  

The Bible says the wages of sin is death. For the lost, it means death in hell. For the Christian, it can mean physical death pre-maturely. Sometimes God will kill a Christian if that person loses his testimony and lives like a non-Christian. Sin brings physical death.  

Sin can also bring death to your marriage, to joy in your life, and to your relationships. Sin destroys. Sin kills.  

However, God has given us a gift. God gave us His Son, Jesus Christ. Eternal life is waiting for those who call on Him in repentance for salvation. Get off the path that leads to death. Get on the highway to Heaven. Turn to Christ today. 

The Point Is...

James Collins

James Collins

James Collins is pastor, columnist, and author. You can write to him by email at james@thepointis.net.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening Devotionals Podcast – Listen live at 6am Pacific and 6pm Pacific. Visit http://anchor.fm/russell-sherrard any other time to listen to all of our episodes. Now on EDIFI.APP. Download from GooglePlay or AppleStore and start listening.
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This site contains Third Party Advertising, using online behavioral tracking technology. Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we believe will add value to our readers.
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FREE eBook Interactive Romans Road American Standard Version This is the ideal and easy way to share the gospel using your Kindle http://bit.ly/2xvdXNY #free
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The Point is … The Broken Wise Man 12/17/2020

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by James Collins

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16

Over the years, my wife, Amanda, and I have amassed a collection of Christmas Nativity sets. At the beginning of each Christmas season, we pull boxes out of storage and decorate the house. One of our sets is just a little more special than the others – the first one that I purchased for Amanda on our first Christmas as husband and wife. 

This past year, I changed jobs and we had to move. One of the Wise Men figures in our special Nativity was broken in the move. When we brought the box out, we were sad to find the broken Wise Man. Somehow, the piece had been broken into two pieces. He was split in half. 

At first, I thought about replacing him. I searched eBay and found a new one for a cost of fifty dollars. Fifty bucks is a lot of money and I’m cheap. I am so cheap, for example, that when Amanda once asked for diamonds for our anniversary, I gave her two of them… the eight and the queen. 

Anyway, since I didn’t want to spend that much money, I decided to glue the Wise Man back together. The results were less than perfect. The glue held fine. However, there was an obvious defect. His paint had chipped away in the break. The Wise Man now had a crack running right through his midsection. He appeared scarred and flawed.  

I placed the Wise Man into the scene next to his two companions. The three were bowed in homage facing the newborn Christ Child. I looked at Amanda expecting a frown. Instead, she smiled and said, “I love it. It’s perfect because we are all broken people.” 

The point is: There is much wisdom in my wife’s words. We are all broken people. But God loves broken people.  

Today, if you will turn from your sins, turn to Jesus, and ask for forgiveness, God will fix your brokenness. That is why Jesus was born. God loves you so much that He sent His Son. If you will put your faith and trust in Him, you will have life abundantly and eternally.  

When I look at the broken Wise Man, I am reminded of God’s great love for me. He fixed my brokenness. He can fix you too.  

That’s what Christmas is all about… 

The Point Is...

James Collins

James Collins

James Collins is pastor, columnist, and author. You can write to him by email at james@thepointis.net.

 

 

 

 

 

 

========================================
Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening Devotionals Podcast – Listen live at 6am Pacific and 6pm Pacific. Visit http://anchor.fm/russell-sherrard any other time to listen to all of our episodes. Now on EDIFI.APP. Download from GooglePlay or AppleStore and start listening.
========================================
This site contains Third Party Advertising, using online behavioral tracking technology. Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we believe will add value to our readers.
========================================
FREE eBook Interactive Romans Road American Standard Version This is the ideal and easy way to share the gospel using your Kindle http://bit.ly/2xvdXNY #free
========================================

The Point is … Black Friday 12/10/2020

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by James Collins

“O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.”  

1 Chronicles 16:34 

 Years ago, my wife, Amanda, talked me into going shopping with her. Shopping with Amanda is dangerous and stressful enough, but, we went shopping on the Friday after Thanksgiving. We went shopping on Black Friday.  

The name “Black Friday” sounds awful. It brings to mind being blackmailed, the black plague, and the black death. It sounds bad.  

Black Friday has always puzzled me. Why is it that on Black Friday Americans are willing to kill over materialistic items just one day after celebrating what they are already thankful for?  

I have heard that the term “Black Friday” refers to the pattern of pedestrian and vehicle traffic that hits large cities. However, that is not true. Retailers coined the term to describe the day of the year when their shops go from being in the red to going into profit or into the black.  

Black Friday has become the largest day of shopping both on the internet and in retail stores. Last year on Black Friday, Americans spent an average of $938.58 per shopper, and Americans spent $655.8 billion overall.   

Anyway, years ago, before our children were born, Amanda talked me into going shopping with her on Black Friday. And I went shopping on the Friday after Thanksgiving for the first and last time in my life.  

At first, I thought it would be fun. I thought it might become a family tradition. I thought we might do a little shopping. Then we would hang out and have breakfast. I thought it would be a nice way to spend time with my wife, but I was wrong. 

The day started out okay. We got up early before dawn. We had coffee. Then we went to Walmart at 5 in the morning. I have never seen anything like what I saw that morning. Three-hundred people lined up waiting for Walmart to open. I can’t get three hundred people to get up that early and come see a new believer get baptized. Man! I can’t even get thirty people to get up that early and come see a new believer get baptized. To tell the truth, I can’t even get three people to get up that early and come see a new believer get baptized. 

When they opened the doors, I was almost trampled by a wild pack of shoppers. Inside the store wasn’t any better. I made the mistake of standing in front of a door-buster sign. People pushed me out of the way to get to a video game that was on sale. 

They wheeled out a blue flashing light. Grown men and women ran from all over the store to the blue light to get a Tickle Me Elmo toy.  

Two women almost got in a fistfight. They were both going after the last coat on a 50% off rack. All over the store people were running, pushing, shoving, fighting, and cussing. I’m telling you, those people were crazy.  

The point is: We have lost our way. On that Black Friday, I realized America has become a nation which has slipped away from worshipping God to a nation that worships material things. One day after giving thanks to God for all their blessings, Americans fight over TVs and toasters. On the day that kicks off the Christmas season, Americans act anything but Christ-like.  

As we celebrate the Thanksgiving Holiday this week, let us pause and give thanks to almighty God for all His blessings. Let us reflect on our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, as we decorate for Christmas. Let us spend quality time with family and friends. It is okay to go shopping, but don’t let shopping come between you and your relationship with God.  

Besides, I have discovered that Black Friday equals Broke Saturday. 

The Point Is...

James Collins

James Collins

James Collins is pastor, columnist, and author. You can write to him by email at james@thepointis.net.

 

 

 

 

 

 

========================================
Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening Devotionals Podcast – Listen live at 6am Pacific and 6pm Pacific. Visit http://anchor.fm/russell-sherrard any other time to listen to all of our episodes.
========================================
This site contains Third Party Advertising, using online behavioral tracking technology. Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we believe will add value to our readers.
========================================
FREE eBook Interactive Romans Road American Standard Version This is the ideal and easy way to share the gospel using your Kindle http://bit.ly/2xvdXNY #free
========================================