Sent: Thursday, October 11, 2001

Subject: The Most Important Minutes of the Day

Dear Ethan & Emily:

Yesterday, I shared some great Bible verses about happiness & obedience.  Just to finish up with several more….from this morning’s quiet time:

“If you want a happy life and good days, keep your tongue from speaking evil, and keep your lips from telling lies.  (v11) Turn away from evil and do good.  WORK HARD at living in peace with others. (and sometimes we do really have to work at this as some people are so difficult to get along with!)  (v12) The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right, and His ears are OPEN to their prayers.”  1 Peter 3:10-12   Certainly, it’s worth it to “put up” with some people who “push our patience” if we can know God is attentive to our prayers!

Before you can be obedient, you must have the “intent” to obey (this does along with determination) and you must arrange your life so that you are in an environment where you associate yourself with others that honor God.  As in all obedience, this takes a conscious and deliberate act on our part.  “Get out of my life, you evil-minded people (it is very important who we “run” with), for I INTEND to obey the commands of my God.” Ps. 119:115.  Of course, true blessing comes after we not only “intend” but as we follow thru and demonstrate our obedience.

And…one of the greatest benefits of obedience is that we have the peace that comes with having ASSURANCE of our salvation:  “And how can we be sure that we belong to Him(the Lord)?  By obeying His commandments….those who obey God’s Word really do love Him.  That is the way to know whether or not we live in Him.  Those who say they live in God should live their lives as Christ did.” 1 John 2: 3-6

These early morning moments along with God reading His Word are the best moments of the day for me (other than the loving moments I have with your Mother!).  For many years I “piddled” at quiet times, but now that I have a definite and regular time to be alone and quiet in God’s presence, I regret I waited so long to get a habit and schedule established.  I pray you will also find such a time. 

Early morning works best for me after I have breakfast and coffee.  Trying to concentrate while being tired or hungry is not good in my opinion.  That is why “before bedtime” or right after waking up sometimes just do not “work.”  God expects us to consciously find a time and place that fits our nature and physical attributes best so that we can enjoy these special times alone with Him.

Well…….enough sermon today.  Have a great day………I love you both!