Day 1/16 – The Biblical Basis of Significance

The Word  – 2 Timothy 3:16 (ESV)  “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,”  2 Timothy 3:16

“…what the mind chooses to think about or dwell on is controlled by the will.  You can choose to meditate on the goodness of God or on your wounded spirit from past hurts; the choice is yours.  The battle is won or lost in the mind through your will.”    Walter A. Henrichsen (“Walt”)

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This email contains, sequentially: Memory Verse (above), Daily Devotion from “Thoughts From The Diary of A Desperate Man” by Walter A. Henrichsen (“Walt”), Scripture Reading  (read the entire Bible in 1 year), and Prayer Requests. 

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The Biblical Basis of Significance

Day Sixteen

“Thus saith the Lord, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me…”  Jeremiah

9:23-24

The world derives significance from three arenas: Wisdom.  Bright people are great people.  We are impressed with those who excel mentally.  The kind of degree, where you earned it, your publications, these are the academic credentials that impress.  If you covet the acclaim of the world, you will find it in the intellectual arena.

Might.  Powerful people are either admired or feared.  Either way, it is the path to greatness.  In the United States, when you first meet a person and have exchanged names, “What do you do?” is the first thing asked. The amount of respect owed you is determined by the answer you give.  If you are a private in the army, or the janitor of the corporation, you receive one kind of response.   If you are a general in the army or the president of a large corporation, you receive an entirely different kind of response.

Riches.  Rich people are successful people; they are powerful people.  A number of years ago when a dirt farmer in the panhandle of Texas struck oil, it was amazing how significant he immediately became.  Overnight he was invited to serve on the boards of universities and charitable institutions.

If you wish an airport to bear your name, or have your likeness in the rotunda of the capitol, you must excel in one or more of these arenas.

In the economy of God, you are not significant because of who you are, but whose you are.  Jeremiah warns his readers that people are great for one reason only; the imputed righteousness of God.  You are created in His image, washed in His blood, and adopted as His children.  Knowing God, or more accurately, being known by God, is the mark of true significance.  When you look to any source other than God for your significance, you invite that source to define significance for you.  At that point you become his obedient servant, not God’s.

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Genesis 39-40 Matthew 11 (New King James Version)

Genesis 39-40

Joseph a Slave in Egypt

39 Now Joseph had been taken down to Egypt. And Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, captain of the guard, an Egyptian, bought him from the Ishmaelites who had taken him down there. The Lord was with Joseph, and he was a successful man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian. And his master saw that the Lord waswith him and that the Lord made all he did [a]to prosper in his hand. So Joseph found favor in his sight, and served him. Then he made him overseer of his house, and all thathe had he put [b]under his authority. So it was, from the time thathe had made him overseer of his house and all that he had, that the Lord blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; and the blessing of the Lord was on all that he had in the house and in the field. Thus he left all that he had in Joseph’s [c]hand, and he did not know what he had except for the [d]bread which he ate.

Now Joseph was handsome in form and appearance.

And it came to pass after these things that his master’s wife [e]cast longing eyes on Joseph, and she said, “Lie with me.”

But he refused and said to his master’s wife, “Look, my master does not know what iswith me in the house, and he has committed all that he has to my hand. There isno one greater in this house than I, nor has he kept back anything from me but you, because you arehis wife. How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?”

10 So it was, as she spoke to Joseph day by day, that he did not heed her, to lie with her orto be with her.

11 But it happened about this time, when Joseph went into the house to do his work, and none of the men of the house wasinside, 12 that she caught him by his garment, saying, “Lie with me.” But he left his garment in her hand, and fled and ran outside. 13 And so it was, when she saw that he had left his garment in her hand and fled outside, 14 that she called to the men of her house and spoke to them, saying, “See, he has brought in to us a Hebrew to [f]mock us. He came in to me to lie with me, and I cried out with a loud voice. 15 And it happened, when he heard that I lifted my voice and cried out, that he left his garment with me, and fled and went outside.”

16 So she kept his garment with her until his master came home. 17 Then she spoke to him with words like these, saying, “The Hebrew servant whom you brought to us came in to me to mock me; 18 so it happened, as I lifted my voice and cried out, that he left his garment with me and fled outside.”

19 So it was, when his master heard the words which his wife spoke to him, saying, “Your servant did to me after this manner,” that his anger was aroused. 20 Then Joseph’s master took him and put him into the prison, a place where the king’s prisoners wereconfined. And he was there in the prison. 21 But the Lord was with Joseph and showed him mercy, and He gave[g] him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison. 22 And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners who werein the prison; whatever they did there, it was his doing. 23 The keeper of the prison did not look into anything that wasunder [h]Joseph’sauthority, because the Lord was with him; and whatever he did, the Lord made itprosper.

The Prisoners’ Dreams

40 It came to pass after these things thatthe butler and the baker of the king of Egypt offended their lord, the king of Egypt. And Pharaoh was angry with his two officers, the chief butler and the chief baker. So he put them in custody in the house of the captain of the guard, in the prison, the place where Joseph wasconfined. And the captain of the guard charged Joseph with them, and he served them; so they were in custody for a while.

Then the butler and the baker of the king of Egypt, who wereconfined in the prison, had a dream, both of them, each man’s dream in one night andeach man’s dream with its owninterpretation. And Joseph came in to them in the morning and looked at them, and saw that they were[i]sad. So he asked Pharaoh’s officers who werewith him in the custody of his lord’s house, saying, “Why do you look sosad today?”

And they said to him, “We each have had a dream, and there isno interpreter of it.”

So Joseph said to them, “Do not interpretations belong to God? Tell themto me, please.”

Then the chief butler told his dream to Joseph, and said to him, “Behold, in my dream a vine wasbefore me, 10 and in the vine werethree branches; it wasas though it budded, its blossoms shot forth, and its clusters brought forth ripe grapes. 11 Then Pharaoh’s cup wasin my hand; and I took the grapes and pressed them into Pharaoh’s cup, and placed the cup in Pharaoh’s hand.”

12 And Joseph said to him, “This isthe interpretation of it: The three branches arethree days. 13 Now within three days Pharaoh will lift up your head and restore you to your [j]place, and you will put Pharaoh’s cup in his hand according to the former manner, when you were his butler. 14 But remember me when it is well with you, and please show kindness to me; make mention of me to Pharaoh, and get me out of this house. 15 For indeed I was stolen away from the land of the Hebrews; and also I have done nothing here that they should put me into the dungeon.”

16 When the chief baker saw that the interpretation was good, he said to Joseph, “I also wasin my dream, and there werethree [k]white baskets on my head. 17 In the uppermost basket wereall kinds of baked goods for Pharaoh, and the birds ate them out of the basket on my head.”

18 So Joseph answered and said, “This isthe interpretation of it: The three baskets arethree days. 19 Within three days Pharaoh will lift [l]off your head from you and hang you on a tree; and the birds will eat your flesh from you.”

20 Now it came to pass on the third day, which wasPharaoh’s birthday, that he made a feast for all his servants; and he lifted up the head of the chief butler and of the chief baker among his servants. 21 Then he restored the chief butler to his butlership again, and he placed the cup in Pharaoh’s hand. 22 But he hanged the chief baker, as Joseph had interpreted to them. 23 Yet the chief butler did not remember Joseph, but forgot him.

Footnotes:

  • Genesis 39:3 to be a success
  • Genesis 39:4 Lit. in his hand
  • Genesis 39:6 Care
  • Genesis 39:6 Food
  • Genesis 39:7 Lit. lifted up her eyes toward
  • Genesis 39:14 laugh at
  • Genesis 39:21 Caused him to be viewed with favor by
  • Genesis 39:23 Lit. his hand
  • Genesis 40:6 dejected
  • Genesis 40:13 position
  • Genesis 40:16 Or baskets of white bread
  • Genesis 40:19 Lit. up

Matthew 11

John the Baptist Sends Messengers to Jesus

11 Now it came to pass, when Jesus finished commanding His twelve disciples, that He departed from there to teach and to preach in their cities.

And when John had heard in prison about the works of Christ, he [a]sent two of his disciples and said to Him, “Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?”

Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and tell John the things which you hear and see: Theblind see and thelame walk; thelepers are cleansed and thedeaf hear; thedead are raised up and thepoor have the gospel preached to them. And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.”

As they departed, Jesus began to say to the multitudes concerning John: “What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind? But what did you go out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Indeed, those who wear soft clothingare in kings’ houses. But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I say to you, and more than a prophet. 10 For this is heof whom it is written:

‘Behold, I send My messenger before Your face,

Who will prepare Your way before You.’

11 “Assuredly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist; but he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. 12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force. 13 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. 14 And if you are willing to receive it,he is Elijah who is to come. 15 He who has ears to hear, let him hear!

16 “But to what shall I liken this generation? It is like children sitting in the marketplaces and calling to their companions, 17 and saying:

‘We played the flute for you,

And you did not dance;

We mourned to you,

And you did not [b]lament.’

18 For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, ‘He has a demon.’ 19 The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Look, a glutton and a [c]winebibber, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ But wisdom is justified by her [d]children.”

Woe to the Impenitent Cities

20 Then He began to rebuke the cities in which most of His mighty works had been done, because they did not repent: 21 “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 But I say to you, it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon in the day of judgment than for you. 23 And you, Capernaum, who[e] are exalted to heaven, will be brought down to Hades; for if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. 24 But I say to you that it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment than for you.”

Jesus Gives True Rest

25 At that time Jesus answered and said, “I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from thewise and prudent and have revealed them to babes. 26 Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight. 27 All things have been delivered to Me by My Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father. Nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and the oneto whom the Son wills to reveal Him.28 Come to Me, all youwho labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am [f]gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For My yoke iseasy and My burden is light.”

Footnotes:

  • Matthew 11:2 NU sent by his
  • Matthew 11:17 Lit. beat your breast
  • Matthew 11:19 wine drinker
  • Matthew 11:19 NU works
  • Matthew 11:23 NU will you be exalted to heaven? No, you will be
  • Matthew 11:29 meek

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“You cannot know until after you believe and speak; that is the order: believe, speak, know.” Walt

PRAYER REQUESTS 

Please Pray for Sister Marisa.  She has breast cancer that has gotten very painful. It is our understanding she has 2-4 weeks til she goes to be with Jesus. 

Please Pray for Albert Chong, Lee Yih’s son in law. Albert had a massive heart attack and is currently in an induced coma. Latest update from Lee’s daughter, Christie Chong:

Dear Friends and Family,

Thank you so much for the many emails, texts, and phone calls that we received today expressing your deep love and concern for Albert and our family.  It has helped to comfort, encourage, and support me through this incredibly harrowing experience.

Some of the details got a little fuzzy in my quick texts, so here is my more detailed account:

What Happened to Albert?

On Monday, Jan 14th, at 2:00am, Albert was awoken by chest pain that didn’t feel right.  He tried to go back to sleep and took some aspirin but didn’t feel better.  By 2:30am, he decided to wake me up to drive him to the hospital rather than risking driving himself.  He recognized the symptoms of a heart attack but remained calm.  We were out the door by 2:40amand left the girls sleeping in their rooms.  (We had WiFi monitors on them so we could check on them and by God’s grace, they slept through it all and my mother-in-law got to the house before they even woke up.)  I knew this was a serious emergency when Albert told me to leave the girls by themselves at home, speed-drive, and even run red lights (which is so against his nature).  We got to the ER in record time (13min), while Albert called ahead to let them know to expect him.  He got checked in while I parked and waited for a bit in the lobby.

At around 3:10am, I had enough of waiting and went inside to look for him in the ER bay.  He had gotten a first EKG and it looked normal.  What a relief.  He was getting pain meds for what felt like severe pain in his chest, causing him to sweat.  He said the pain was getting worse.  At around 3:30amthe ER doc called for a 2nd EKG and at first, the nurse had a hard time finding a reading because Albert was “fidgeting” and not holding still.  This was because his body was building up to a sudden violent convulsion.  He was going into cardiac arrest (V-TACH)!  It was the most terrifying thing I have ever seen and I will spare you the details.  Suddenly, everyone was rushing around him, pushing buttons that made lights flash, yelling for the docs, etc.  

One of the docs ushered me out of the room, saying, “You don’t want to see this as it’s quite traumatic.”  Stuck in the waiting room down the hall was so nerve-wracking as I kept hearing the “cardiac alert” announcement on the PA and knowing it was Albert.  I snuck back a few times to peek through the window only to see his toes sticking out at the end of the bed, people crowding around the bed, shocking him, giving him CPR, doing chest compressions, passing different medicines back and forth…  I couldn’t bear to keep watching.  I could only pray and beg God for mercy on Albert.  Later, I was grateful that we got there in time with about 30min to spare before he went into cardiac arrest.  It was close and I was sobered at the thought that he could have died had he been anywhere else but inside the hospital during that critical time.

Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, they stabilized him and the cardiology team arrived.  Later I found out that the ER team were having trouble resuscitating him each time.  They ended up shocking him a total of 12 times.  It was a very bad heart attack.  They were able to take him upstairs to the cath lab to find out where the blockages were.  The procedure started at 4:15amand lasted about an hour.  

Afterwards, they noticed abnormal shaking, which is a sign of a potential neurological problem.  So to be proactive in protecting his brain functions, they put him in a hypothermic coma to shutdown his body and give his brain a chance to rest and recover without being overtaxed.  This was troubling to me because Albert never came to and they didn’t get to evaluate him to see if he was OK after the cardiac arrest.  We would have to wait a grueling 48-72 hours to find out if there was any damage to his brain during such a long time of being in cardiac arrest.  But this is giving him his best chance at recovery at this point.  The cardiologist explained to me that this was not a “run-of-the-mill” heart attack, but quite a complicated one given the events.

How is Albert now?

For the hypothermic coma, they took a long time to cool his body down to 33oC (~92oF) and they have to keep it at that constant temp for 24 hours, taking his blood every half an hour, monitoring his breathing and heart rate, etc.  He had what seemed like a dozen IV bags of medicines and fluids, plus machines that were hooked up to him, and his skin felt cold to the touch.  Once the 24 hours are up (Tues morning), they will start to warm his body up 0.25 degrees per hour (or 2) until he reaches 36 degrees Celsius.  This could take 12 hours, or, if they go doubly slow, it could take 24 more hours.  The docs are leaning toward taking it slow since a brand-new study just got released about the positive effects of that slow rate.  So, we may be looking at another 24-48 hours before they try to wake him up.  That means we are looking at maybe Wed or Thurs possibly getting a chance to learn how Albert was affected.  Tomorrow, they will monitor brain waves to protect against seizures.  Later on, he will get a CAT scan or MRI to evaluate brain function.  So, for now, it is just a waiting game at this point.  Nothing we can do except Pray!

Brother Walt requests Prayer for Kathy his dear friend’s wife. Kathy was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune condition known as dermatomyositischaracterized by skin rash and muscle weakness, and which had a rapid onset about six weeks ago. There is no cure. Treatment is chemotherapy to kill the immune system, which is attacking her skin and muscle cells, and prednisone to reduce the inflammatory response.  They are headed to Stanford to engage medical treatment experts for this rare disease at the end of January. They have three beautiful and talented children. One goes to Brown, the other Stanford and the youngest is a sophomore in high school. Though Kathy is a kind, loving person, she has been a bit resistant to the Gospel; she has a new age concept of Elohim and not sure she knows Yeshua or whether He knows her.  Gerard is a faithful Catholic and believes in the power of Prayer. We Pray that in the midst of this trial, Kathy would accept Yeshua into her heart, and develop an insatiable appetite to execute Elohom’s will in all areas of her life.  That his mercy would abound in her life, including re-establishing a perfectly healed immune system; that he would repair every damaged cell, DNA strands or base pairs; destroy and clear any viruses or abnormal cells, and miraculously perfect all cells, molecules, nutrients, vitamins and neurotransmitters in her body. We Pray He would heal her mind so that she has an insatiable thirst for the Word and to be assured of her place in the Body of Christ. We Pray He would turn her test into a powerful testimony that transforms the lives of others He will assign to her, especially Sean, Daniella and Grant – her incredible children.  That they too would transformed into Disciples by her healing miracle.  Above all, Father, let your will be done! Amen. 

Please Pray for Brother John LaPorte’s sister, Cathy, who had her gall bladder removed. Please Pray there are no other associated problems. 

Brother Nate, wife Jellah and their daughter Jael arrived in Las Vegas from the Philippines on Christmas Eve.  Unfortunately, they arrived sick.  They are still sick almost 2 weeks later.  Please Pray that God would heal them and also keep Dave and his wife Sally from catching it.

Please continue to Pray for Brother Wayde Yeley’s mother‘s heart condition.  

Please continue to Pray for: 

1) Healing for baby Caden (Kevin Odor’s grandson) – born with Agenesis of the corpus callosum (rare neurological birth defect); and

2) Peace and healing for Marlene Webb – 84-year-old who recently received Christ as her Savior; Pray for her to truly embrace God’s Peace and Plan for her remaining time on earth. (She is very sick with congenital heart failure. )

Please continue to Pray for Brother Juan, David Frear’s father in law. He is recovering from a liver AND kidney transplant. 

Please continue to Pray for Sister Fabiola and her children in Mexico. And, please continue to Pray for her church caught up in the tragedies surrounding the murder of her husband, x-husband and one of her children.

Michelle continues to request Prayer for her husband and herself (Michelle and Jesus Arredondo) as they are wanting to start a family.

Please continue to Pray for Micheal Bolognini and his father, Louis Bolognini.  Louis was released from hospital and taken off cancer medication and went into hospice care. Pray they will experience God’s Presence and Hope in Jesus. 

Please continue to Pray for the Salvation of Hagen who is HIV positive and is deathly ill. 

We continue to ask for Prayers and Gods Grace and Mercy for Baby Grace and her parents, Lisa and Darren. 

Please continue to Pray for Alejandro Corral, his son Alejandro Jr., and his aunt Josefina. 

Please continue to Pray for Brother Steve Venable dealing with ALS. 

Please continue to Pray for our Persecuted Brothers and Sisters and their families that are suffering and giving their lives for our Faith.  10 WAYS TO PRAY FOR OUR PERSECUTED CHRISTIAN FAMILY.. Pray our brothers and sisters will:

1. Sense God’s presence (Heb. 13:5) 

2. Know we are praying for them (2 Tim. 1:3) 

3. Experience God’s comfort (2 Thess. 2:16–17) 

4. See God open doors to evangelism (Col. 4:3) 

5. Boldly share the gospel (Acts 4:29) 

6. Mature in their faith (Col. 1:28–29) 

7. Be granted wisdom in covert ministry work (Acts 9:23–25) 

8. Remain joyful amid suffering (Acts 5:41) 

9. Forgive and love their persecutors (Matt. 5:44) 

10. Be rooted in God’s Word (2 Tim. 3:16–17)

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Stand with your Brothers and Sisters in Prayer and Support. (See: The Voice of the Martyrs: https://www.persecution.com)

Please continue Pray for our President & government leaders that they will would seek God and Walk in His Ways.    

Please continue to pray for Biblical “headship” in families.

Please continue to Pray for all our children. 

Please continue to Pray that there would be a resurgence of Biblical “Fear of the Lord” in the church and in each of us… “to fear the Lord is the beginning of Wisdom.”

Please continue to Pray for Brother Ron Brink’s son who had 3+ military tours in Iraq and Afghanistan and who is now suffering brain damage and PTSD.  Pray for God’s Healing Power to fall upon Johnathon. (Ron is a 20 plus year missionary in Mexico with Touch Baja… for info on Touch Baja and how to touch the Mexican people for Christ, see http://www.touchbaja.com.)

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