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Friday, November 7, 2008

Kissing Camels

I played golf yesterday at Kissing Camels, one of Colorado’s premier courses. A golf buddy had bid on golf for four at an auction, and won. He graciously included me in the foursome.

Kissing Camels sits on a mesa directly across from Garden of the Gods, a popular tourist attraction. A massive rock formation in Garden of the Gods resembles two kissing camels. Nearly every fairway offers a clear view of Garden of the Gods, Pike’s Peak, and Cheyenne Mountain. But, as we played, we were also treated to a close-up look at deer herds and a coyote. A regal buck stared menacingly at us when we looked for an errant golf ball (not mine) in a stand of ponderosa pine.

Viewing the spectacular scenery and wildlife yesterday reinforced my conviction that the Creator is all wise, all powerful, and benevolent. What a wonderful environment He provided for us! But nature rests under a curse, and therefore doesn’t rival the beauty and majesty of the original creation. However, when Jesus returns to Earth, He will restore the planet to Edenlike conditions. I can hardly wait to play a premier golf course then.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Life Begins at Any Age

“I am still as strong today as the day Moses sent me out; I’m just as vigorous to go out to battle now as I was then” (Joshua 14:11).

Next time you order a chicken breast—original or extra crispy—a side of mashed potatoes, and a side of baked beans at KFC, consider this fact: Harlan Sanders started the Kentucky Fried Chicken chain of restaurants when he was 66. Sure, a younger person could have concocted the “secret blend of eleven herbs and spices,” but only the white-haired, white-suited 66-year-old colonel took the chicken by the neck and launched a successful nationwide chain of fingerlickin’ good food. Starting in Corbin, Kentucky, he signed up five restaurants. Four years later, he ruled the roost over 200 franchises. Ten years later, he sold his interest in the company for $2 million.

Take a lesson from the Colonel, life can begin at any age. We shouldn’t let ambition and productivity die before we do.

When I was 16, I took a week’s leave of absence from high school and worked my father’s bread route so he could drive to Ottawa, Canada, in response to a medical emergency. My grandmother had suffered a stroke, and the doctors predicted she would die within several days. However, Grandma was a bit contrary by nature, and I think she took great pleasure in contradicting her doctors. Not only did she not die within a few days, she lived another 15 years, and used those additional years to pursue a new hobby—landscape painting.

Grandma’s paintings were actually very good, and our family seized the opportunity to refer to her as Grandma Moses.

You and I may not launch a chain of restaurants or become creators of fine art, but we can turn our creativity towards pursuits that keep us young and stretches our horizons. Continuing education opportunities abound in most
communities and include almost everything from computers to ceramics and German to gourmet cooking. Golf courses and tennis clubs host beginner classes. And job training is available for those who want to enter a new career.

So whatever you choose to do, as Nike says, “Just do it!”

The Lord is no respecter of age. When He looks for someone to serve Him, He doesn’t look at a birth certificate, He looks at the heart. Noah was 480 years old when the Lord commanded him to build an ark. Moses was 80 when the Lord appointed him to lead the Hebrews out of Egypt. Caleb was 85 when he drove giants from the mountain the Lord had promised to him. Rocking chairs would have been inappropriate retirement gifts for these men. You see, their lives were just beginning!

“Lord, may each new day radiate with magnificent opportunities and fresh challenges. Grant me the necessary faith, wisdom, and energy to make the most of them.”

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The Ultimate Vote

Millions of Americans will elect the 44th President of the United States today. The outcome will profoundly affect our nation's future. I hope wisdom will prevail.

What each voter thinks of the two presidential candidates is extremely important, but of far greater importance is what each person thinks of Jesus Christ. That opinion decides one's eternal destiny.

Jesus asked His disciples who people said he was. The reply indicated varied opinions. Some said Jesus was John the Baptist risen from the dead. Others said He was Elijah. Others said He was Jeremiah. And others said He was some other prophet. Probing the hearts and minds of His disciples, Jesus aked, "Who do you say I am?"

Not surprisingly, Peter spoke first. His response was perfect. "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God."

If you believe Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God, you don't have to be concerned about your eternal destiny. Heaven is Your eternal home. Also, you can be encouraged to know Jesus Christ will accomplish His will on Earth regardless of who occupies the White House.

If you haven't voted yet, do so as soon as possible. If you haven't "cast your vote" for Jesus Christ, the Son of the living God, by believing on Him, why not do so right now?

"He who believes in the Son has everlasting life" (John 3:36a).