Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Matthew 28:18-20, Mark 16:15, Luke 24:47-48, John 20:21-22, Acts 1:8 Jesus Final Command...The excitement in the air is thickening! The crowds are coming from all around the nation, from around the world. My eyes are open and I see people of all colors, backgrounds, sizes, ages, on foot, on bikes, on motorcycles, in cars, buses, trucks, horse and buggies. They are literally everywhere! It took me over 45 minutes to get into the city to pick up my husband. That’s over twice as long as an average day. Then getting out was just as challenging. I'm talking Indianapolis, SuperBowl week. You got it...I'm living in it, driving in it, experiencing it. And I'm not even a sports fan. (Sorry, nothing against it, I'm just not one of them, not my nature.) It is exciting though, crazy, stressed, overcrowded, but exciting. A song on the radio fills my ears, words that say to let your light shine on the city, don't let your light go out. Scripture verses fill my eyes, The Great Commission-Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I Jesus have commanded you, I Jesus am with you always, even to the end of the age. And my mind is full of thinking, waiting for what God wants me to do with the $10 FOTC Challenge, who, when, where, how...the what is already known...God gave us, each of us his one and only Son, Jesus Christ our Savior so we can spend eternity in Heaven, living for God almighty Our Holy God who is Holy indeed! This exciting time reminds me of 1987, the year we first moved to Indianapolis, the year of the Pan Am Games. I was new to a state, city, and church. I went downtown Indianapolis to do volunteer missions. I thought serving food, handing out bags of groceries, working in the office running errands as needed. Not knowing what to expect I overdressed, wearing a dress to a sports function was not the norm. (Like I said earlier in this blog, I’m not a sportsman and this proves it. I didn’t even know what the Pan Am games were.) I found myself in a classroom learning how to walk the streets; I was petrified, talking about stepping out of my comfort zone. I remember walking the streets handing out tracks and doing nothing more than that. I remember a lady who caught my eye. She was also in a dress, an old worn dress, and she was following me block by block, and she was watching me. I was able to talk with her, give her a track that was all. Very simple, but I felt on top of the world. She smiled and walked away. It was like she just needed to be reminded that somebody loved her. Isn’t that the way most of us are? God knows our needs better than we do ourselves. So that’s where I stand. Maybe tomorrow I’ll have something to write about. Until then…May God Richly Bless and Fill you with the Holy Spirit, overflowing you to share with those around you. J
Monday, January 30, 2012
Matthew 9:35-38 Pray for Workers in the Harvest...What did I write about not too long ago in this blog? That God talks to me in themes...it's so cool. Today on the way home from work the radio was on and they were talking about Make a difference Monday, KLove station. They were telling a story about how because one person obeyed God and shared the gospel, a 62 year old man came to know Christ. Then they shared the scripture of how the Harvest is ready, but the laborers are few. Then tonight as I was reading my verse for the day, wouldn't you know but the verse Matthew 9:37 The Harvest is ready, but the laborers are few. What have I been praying for? That God give me what I need to share His truth with others? Yesterday our church did a bold and out of the box challenge. Our pastor gave everybody in the church an envelope with a $10 bill in it. Yes, you heard me, our church gave us money. But it had a string attached, a challenge. We are to go do something with it that shows others the truth, salvation, who God really is. Now my first thought was, this is too easy. I'll just give it to WellSpring. Now if you've been keeping up with my FaceBook, you'll see that I also have a WellSpring page. This ministry is dear to my heart and a very vital part of JVR. But, that would be too easy. Too easy, because I feel that God wants me to get out of my comfort zone and give it or be creative with it, somehow to be face to face so I can verbally share who God is. I thought of writing a note of encouragement and the plan of salvation and the challenge along with the address of some churches they could go to. But then again, I felt the Lord telling me, too easy. Get out of my comfort zone. This week, before next Sunday is when I need to complete this challenge. Then, when we accomplish this task we are to share what we did, and the outcome on the FOTC FaceBook page. You should go there and see all the wonderful things God is doing. So I've got my eyes, mind, and heart open to what our Holy precious Lord will have me to do. I'll keep you posted.
Friday, January 27, 2012
Luke 16:19-31 and Luke 21:25-28 Live with Urgency...When I read and hear these and similar passages I want to run and shout and share the good news with everybody! I want to go up to people I don’t even know and tell them the great news of our Lord and Savior! How God gave up His son for our benefit so we can spend eternity in Heaven not the Hell we're all destined for. I definitely feel the urgency to run out and tell the world. Then life happens...a wall shoots up in my face stopping me in my tracks. My excitement, zeal, urgency, words, motivation is all taken away, escapes like air let out of a balloon, leaving a defeated blob of nothing good for nothing but a choking hazard. Life, self, satan, all those things are so strong and get in the way. But...our Holy God is stronger than all of those! Keep our eyes on our Heavenly Savior!
Matthew 7:7-11, James 5:13-20 Praying for Those Yet to Believe...Praying for people I know need the Lord is a privilege as well as a responsibility. I know that nothing is more important than salvation. A person can be the wealthiest, happiest most popular person in the world his whole life, but without knowing Jesus as savior that person will live eternity in hell. What is eternity compared to a mere 100 years or so? When I open my eyes and ears I see a whole world of people around me. There are people driving next to me, in front of me, in back of me, around me. There are people walking around me in the stores. There are people calling on the phone selling things, taking surveys. We deal with people every day. When I think of them as real people instead of well, I don't know, instead of obstacles I have to deal with? I realize that I need to be more loving, more caring, more patient, more sharing. I wonder how many people I don't even know that I come in contact with in some way each and every day. How can I share God's truth with them? A smile, and friendly hand, a prayer? It puts a whole new perspective on things. And we're not even talking about people we know or family members. The old saying, I might be the only Jesus a person may see? No, this doesn't mean I have to be perfect, because believe me that will never happen. It means that I am a witness for Jesus, and the character that Jesus has should be reflected through me. If I get angry with the driver next to me, or grumpy with the cashier at the store, or hateful with the telemarketer caller on the other end of the phone, or slam a door on a Jehovah Witness or Mormon at my door, what message am I relaying to those people? Surely not the truth of the Loving Holy Almighty God we serve!
Monday, January 23, 2012
John 1:35-51 Survey Your World- First let me add on to yesterday's blog, Day#13. At church our pastor talked about who God is and how He is not just a loving God, but He is a Holy Loving God. This is different and so much more than just a loving God. It puts God in a different perspective, well not really a different one, but a more humble one. We mere humans don't really understand what 'Holy' is. Well, I know I don't...really...I just accept it and know that God is God and He can do whatever He wants, whenever He wants. I know that I'm just a little peon, yet so important in His eyes. This is where I get confused or overwhelmed. It seems an oxymoron, yet it makes sense. And I praise God that it does make sense. Today's posting is totally different than what came to me. Today's posting talks about bringing people with you to be disciples of Jesus. What really spoke to me however was the last verse, v 51. The Heavens open up and the angles go to and fro to God and Jesus. If I was to wake up tonight or look up right now and see a stranger I would be so scared. Reading God's word whenever angels appeared they would always start saying, 'fear not'. I use to wonder why anybody would be afraid of an angel. No I shudder to think of having an experience like that myself. Not that it wouldn’t be an honor or exciting, just fearful, at first anyway. When I think of miracles, and angels, and spiritual things, I realize that you God made us out of dust with a breath. And then I realize that you Lord, can take in a deep breath and just as quickly we can all be dust again. But you Lord, chose not to do that. You God gave us another chance; everyone who is alive has another chance. My prayer Lord is to show me, guide me, lay out the path, open the door, let me walk through and keep my eyes on you Lord! Let my hands be yours! My feet yours! My mouth yours! My brain yours! My pen yours!
Sunday, January 22, 2012
The Power of Love John 13:34-35 and John 15:9-17 The power of love is a strong power. It's a power that is stronger than any superpower known to mankind. Unfortunately it's not as easy to be found as one might hope. This world of ours is so full of hate and bitterness that even in the best surroundings it's hard to keep that power of Love alive. But, then again life is full of surprises. Today my daughter went to the laundry mat to wash a large blanket that wouldn’t fit in our washing machine. She was short a quarter and called me in a quandary on what to do. She had already put the soap, blanket, and all the money she had into the machine. Being on the other end of the phone, I was trying to tell her she needed to come home to get more money. Such a small thing, but I hear her voice full of excitement when I hear "awe, thank you! That was nice, thank you!" Somebody had given her a quarter and that little act of kindness filled my daughter with hope and love. Love doesn't have to be anything large, in fact the little things we do are sometimes the largest vessels of love we can show. When we show love, we show God. When we fail to love we fail to show God. In fact, in my opinion, as a child of God, if we fail to show love, we do more harm to the witness of God than anything.
The Blessings of Obedience John 14:15-23 and Matthew 7:21-27 Obedience is a bad word in our world today. Obedience is a negative word, a word that shows weakness, unhappiness, and control. A child cannot be taught to be obedience without the parent or teacher being accused of abuse. A wife cannot be expected to be obedient without being accused of having a controlling or abusive husband. A man cannot be expected to be obedient without being accused of being a weakling, controlled, or being walked over. So when we hear that God expects obedience, how can we expect our world to embrace this teaching? The problem is the understanding of the word 'obedience' in the way God expects it. God is not a controlling God, we would still be living in the Garden of Eden like robots doing and saying exactly what God wanted us to do or say. Or we would not exist. God has so much for us, so much more than any of us can even comprehend. All He wants is for us to Love. Love Him, His Son, each other. I speak to myself when I ask, what is so hard about being obedient to God? The Holy One! The One who created me, you, our world, our existence. Really, what is so hard about that?
Surrendered Lives Romans 12:1-2 and 1 John 3:16 The prayer guide tells about people who had a heart for slaves in another country. They felt led to go and share the truth with the slaves. They found out that the slave owners would not allow them to preach the gospel to the slaves. So they devised a plan that they would sell themselves as slaves to live among them and share Christ. The Count wouldn’t allow it saying it was too high a price for them to pay. They insisted it was what God wanted them to do. After prayer they felt led and went only to find they were allowed to share without selling themselves. Isn’t this what we've learned all these years as Christians? This is what we've taught our kids. But do I live it? Really? I have a spoiled comfortable life. Yes I would like to believe I'd do anything for God. And yes I've crept out of my comfort zone before. But now in my aging life I'm settling more and more in my comfort zone. Lord, fill me again with your zest and excitement and urgency to share you with others! Again I pray for your wisdom, knowledge, and guidance along with support, encouragement, and motivation to do your will! I'm yours! Take me! Use me!
Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Revelation 2:1-5 Return to your first Love. It's so easy to get involved with church, volunteer work, helping others, doing what's right. I remember when our children were young and we were so involved in church, that was our life. We ate, breathed, and slept church. And there's nothing wrong with that. In fact I think it's an excellent way to raise a family, especially in this world of ours. Where the problem comes in is when our First Love is lost in all of the involvement, things to do, places to go. Yes, I do admit that saying no sometimes is best. I've learned that listening to God means sometimes saying no. And sometimes, ummm, most of the time, even God's children don't seem to understand when you have to tell them no. I remember one time a member of a church was asked to work in the nursery. This member answered, I'll need to pray about it and I will let you know. The remark was, why would you need to pray about that? We need nursery workers, you were asked, so the answer should be yes. Well, I can't really agree with that, simply because if we are truly in Love with God we will want a relationship with Him. And in a strong loving relationship we will want to do what God's wants of us. Sometimes we know immediately, but sometimes we need to pray and wait for an answer. All this to say, we as God's children, doing God's work, can lose our first love. I guess when we get an attitude about doing God's work we need to return to our First Love!
Matthew 5:23-24, Mark 11:25 Reconcile Broken Relationships. So I'm trying to figure out Matthew 5:23, 24 where it says if somebody has anything against you-go take care of it. The devotion says that means if you've wronged anybody go ask for forgiveness and make restitution if needed. And yes, that makes sense. My confusion comes in when somebody has a problem with you even if you've done nothing wrong, or don't know that you've done anything wrong. Falsely accused, or refused to forgive you when you've asked and made restitution. What do you do in that case? I guess the only answer to this is to pray for God to give wisdom, open the eyes to see, and then follow through with asking forgiveness and restitution. I always seem to over think things. I need to just trust in God, open my heart in His presence, and give my all to Him!
Saturday, January 14, 2012
Luke 24:45-49, Acts 1:1-8, Ephesians 5:18 Be Filled with the Spirit. Goes along with yesterday, in order to be filled with the Spirit you need to be empty of the ugly stuff. I find it interesting for some reason that before Jesus returned to Heaven, he told His followers to wait for the filling of the Holy Spirit. It was 40 days later before they were filled. I don't know why it intrigues me, but they weren't filled immediately, but 40 days later. Another interesting verse I found in this days devotion, 2 Chronicles 16:9 "The eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to show Himself strong for those whose hearts are completely His." Now I just recently read through the entire books of Chronicles and I don't remember this. But that doesn't surprise me a bit. When I read the personal questions in this day's readings I'm to ask myself if I'm empty or not and to ask God to cleanse me and the Spirit to fill me. I want this so bad, but I ashamed to say I do hesitate. Not because I don't want to do Gods work, oh no. I really do, my heart’s desire is to. It's because I'm afraid. I'm afraid that if I open up and expose my heart that I'll be smacked upside the head and then I'll close up and layer another layer of armor over my heart. I say this because it's happened before and I'm just not strong enough to handle the enemy. So I'm taking a huge breath and asking God to take all of me, cleanse me squeaky clean, Overflow me with the Holy Spirit, and then hold on to me tight! Pull me through the smuck, the uglies, over to the other side where it's peaceful, incomparable, and where nothing else matters but your Glory! Be with and in me so I will respond to others in words, actions, attitude, and spirit that's without guilt, swaying, nor second thoughts, but know that it's all from you, not me, not satan, but you! Breathe...thank you Lord! I give you all the praise and Glory!
Friday, January 13, 2012
2Corinthians 13:5, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Galatians 5:19-25 What is the evidence? Hmmm. Test myself to see if I am in the faith...The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality...no, impurity and debauchery...no, idolatry and witchcraft...no, hatred...mmmm...no not really, aggravated, disappointed maybe, frustrated, but not hatred, discord...mmm...sometimes, jealousy...mmm...at times, fits of rage...ummm...once in a great moon, selfish ambition...uuuu...might think about it, but dismiss it, dissensions...ouch...more than I want to admit, factions...no, and envy...uuuuh...like jealousy...at times; drunkenness...nope, orgies...nope, and the like...no. So these are the things of the flesh. I'm embarrassed to have to admit to some of this. I wish I could say I don't do any of it, but unfortunately there is some of this inside of me. These fleshly things need to be replaced with the fruit of the Spirit, love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. The thing is, we as humans cannot replace our fleshly acts with these spiritual fruits by ourselves. We must be a child of God, living in the Spirit allowing the Holy Spirit to cleanse us and replace our fleshly acts with these fruits of the Spirit. Too many times I think we are told that we need to replace these ourselves. I think that is so dangerous because of many reasons. One, we just can't do it and we will fail and fall into depression. Two, we may be able to pull it off for a time and become prideful and conceited before we fall even harder bringer others with us. Three, we fail to depend on God and let God take us, use us, hold us. Well, I kind of went out on a limb on this blog with some personal ideas and opinions. But most importantly, if you are reading this and you do not know Jesus as your personal savior, pray right now to receive Him. He loves you as you are. You don't have to be good enough for Jesus, because, well, none of us are. God sent His Son on this earth to live as a man, suffer, die, and then come back to life. He did that for you and me. He did that because we messed up and He Loves us so much He's given us another chance to live eternity with Him. It's this simple, we all die. There is a Heaven and a hell. When we die we go to one of the two places. We all are doomed to hell because of our sin, Adam and Eve being kicked out of the Garden of Eden, the perfect place given to us from the start but then we, mankind, Adam and Eve messed everything up. So yes, we are all doomed to go hell. But, because of God's Love for us, He has given us another chance, Jesus! We have a choice, God doesn't make us choose. And God doesn't doom us to hell, we do that all by ourselves! Oh boy am I on a soap box tonight! Well, I'll call it quits for now. If I've totally confused you, just comment. I'd be glad to answer any questions I can, if I can.
Thursday, January 12, 2012
Proverbs 28:13 Confession I find that one of the hardest things to do is to ask God to show me my blind spots. To show me the un-confessed sin in my heart. I hate it because inevitably there is sin, even if I don't want to admit it. Take for instance, road rage...:/ I consider myself a pretty calm, easy going, laid back sort of person. It usually takes quite a bit to upset me, or just the right button to push. I remember one time I was on my way to work. I was listening to the Christian Radio Station, enjoying, worshiping, singing God's praises. Yes, I said praising God, when all of the sudden somebody cut me off. Boy I tell you out of my "Heavenly Worship Mood" came an ugly attitude shouting what are you doing stupid? I surprised myself with the outburst. God used that moment to teach me how ugly my insides are, without Him. This morning after my quiet time I grudgingly prayed the prayer of God to reveal to me my un-confessed sin. He showed me my pride, as I didn't want to do a simple polite thing. My rotten attitude, again during traffic when a car pulled out in front of me. Actually, this morning twice did I have a road type of testing. The first was a taxi behind me honking his horn at me to make a right on red, when the sign clearly says no right turn on red. I held my cool, pointed to the sign and jestered (a friendly one at that.) I couldn't turn. My attitude was cool to moderate, and no name calling or anger. I was feeling pretty prideful, there it is pride! Yes, it wasn't a few blocks later that I was making a left on a green left arrow when a car pulled out in front of me making a right on red. (Isn't God clever?) Well, my anger rose to the top of my head and I laid on the horn, pressed the gas, giving the other driver a look of "I dare you!" Yes, some Christian attitude hugh? So yes, I confess my pride and ask God to forgive me and cleanse me of it, filling me with the Holy Spirit that I be made pure and give God the Glory in everything. That I remember to keep my eyes on Jesus always!
Wednesday, January 11, 2012
Isaiah 40:1-5 So why does God have us here in Martinsville? Why did He bring us here? Why did He not let us leave when we tried to? Why did He give me details of JVR over 10 years ago and still nothing? Those questions lurk in my brain every once in a while. But then you answer me, again, so patiently. Thank you Lord for bringing me back to prayer, the very foundation, basis of a relationship and obedience to you Lord. Today's readings talks to me about my need to be serious about prayer for Martinsville and everybody JVR-the Novel will touch. So yes prayer for Martinsville and everything, every living soul that is touched or touches JVR-the Novel here is my prayer for you: 1) Bring conviction to all in Martinsville and all who read and hear about any part of JVR-the Novel that they will put away sin and doubtful habits. That you Lord will direct my pen, word, and witness to this in all I do. 2) I pray that so many people will come to faith in you Christ, that Martinsville and all that are touched by JVR-the Novel will be changed for good for God's Glory. That JVR-the Novel will be known as the life changing book for Gods Glory for communities at a time. 3) Bring me to the next level in your Ministry JVR, to write the blog, book, website, whatever that next step will be-for Your Glory not mine!
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Making the Gospel Attractive Titus 2:9-10 and 1 Peter 2:11-12 Wow! Does this one hit home. Everybody is watching me! My family, children, strangers, co-workers, everybody. How do I respond to my husband when I've had a hard day? How do I react when somebody cuts my off in traffic or walks in front of me at the grocery store when I'm trying to pick up something. How do I answer the phone when a telemarker calls? Yeah, uhu, that's right! A telemarker is a person! Oh yes, and the sale people or peopel from other churches come to your door? Yes they are peopel too. I know, it's hard isn't it? After all we are all human, and nobody is perfect right? Like I said this is a hard one. We need to be attractive to others so people will want to know our God! Easier said than done! Again Lord, I need your help!
God's Pattern for Revival and Awakening 2 Chronicles 7:13-14 Sorry I didn't get on the computer at all yesterday. I feel that God is bringing me back to where I need to be strong before I can move on. Prayer...I need to learn again to be in Prayer for every single thing in my life and trust God with every single thing in my life. Sometimes I feel that it will take the rest of my life to get this one. So much so that I have to wonder if I'll ever be able to be used by God. But I'm getting older and time is getting shorter and I know that God wants to use me because He showed me. So, here I am Lord! Lead me, talk to me, Use me! In my family, church, community, work, city, state, country, world.
Saturday, January 7, 2012
Zechariah 1:1-6 What did I just write about? How God speaks in themes in everything around me until I get what He's telling me? Today is about prayer, and wouldn't you know...I just received my lesson for children's church tomorrow and it's about prayer! :) Prayer, what is prayer? Communication with the Heavenly Father. I've always prayed, for as long as I can remember. Before I was a Christian I prayed. Growing up I prayed for school, tests, grades, friends,boys, just about everything. In fact, by time I was a teenager I prayed every night. I was afraid not to pray. I was afraid that if I forgot to pray, bad things would happen. As I became a Christian prayer became a totally new concept. Still talking to God, but now in a true relationship. A relationship that talks back to me too. It hasn't been too terribly long since I struggled with that. And I can't say that I totally understand today, but I have a much better understanding or should I say, peace about it. A few years ago, we had a Bible study at our church, Calvary Heights Baptist in Martinsville. The study was Experiencing God. This Bible study, it's been probably about 14 or 15 years ago, is the one of the best Bible studies I've ever been to. I learned so much. I learned how to listen to God, how to know what He is saying and when he speaks. How to keep my eyes, heart, spirit, mind open to everything around me. You see, God speaks to us in everything! Remember the Bible verse "even the rocks will praise Him"? Luke 19:40 and Isaiah 55:12,even the hills, mountains, trees, animals. They know God because God made them, God made us. So, even though I don't always remember that fact, and sometimes I forget to really listen...Thank you God for speaking to me right now as I write. Praying isn't just bowing your head and talking with God in your mind. Praying can be many different ways of communication. And wouldn't you know, my favorite way is Journaling. Yes many prayers are scattered throughout my journals, notes, blogs. :)
Acts 19:1-20 What...Do not try to do God's work without the power of the Holy Spirit, without a personal relationship with Christ. Who...Confess Jesus as savior and be filled with the Holy Spirit. Why...Share the truth with everyone to give God the glory and praise, to increase our faith, to live a victorious life in Christ. When...Now, not tomorrow, not next week, not next year, but now. Where...Here in my community, my family, my world. The days questions are, What do you want me to do Lord? What are you wanting me to hear? What are you revealing to me? I thought these verses were very interesting. I've read them before, but they never spoke to me like they did today. To be baptized by the Holy Spirit is to be filled and over filled busting at the seams to share Christ with all. Tying to do God's work without God is asking for trouble. Trouble that mankind cannot handle on his own. These TV shows that show evil in a romantic theme, with mankind escaping or being seduced by the evil only to be romantically doomed. How dangerous this territory is and we don't even realize it. Even God's elect, God's children are seduced by this romantic evil spell. If satan can seduce even God's child, what use is that child to the rest of the dying world? When the world ends, and it will, what will happen to all those who did not hear the gospel, those who heard the gospel but laugh at it as rubbish and judgmental. Yes, lets believe in a world of the dead where there is no hope and no happiness, but the world where there is hope, happiness, and peace...rubbish all rubbish...:( I don’t know about you, but that sounds backwards to me. From a world that wants world peace and seeks the romantic evil, it seems all an oxymoron to me. Since when does evil give peace and Christ give hate?
Thursday, January 5, 2012
At work today I was challenged to a 21 day prayer guide...Awaken 2012 by Claude V King. It's ironic that it's the very thing I was just blogging about. But then again, God does that. He works on a subject or theme until I get it. Sunday preaching, songs I hear on the radio, work devotions, conversations with friends and families. I just love the way God works! ‘It's Time’ Romans 13:11 "Another reason for right living is that you know how late it is; time is running out. Wake up..." I think that's pretty cool. So I'm going to take this challenge. Sometimes I'm not up to these types of challenges. It's not that I have anything against them, it's just I'm so busy. And I usually have at least one Bible Study I'm working on in my quiet time at least. Definitely not bragging, because I need all the help I can get and I don't do near enough study. But what I do I really enjoy! So, I feel that this challenge is closely related to JVR. In that sense, I'm going to be blogging about this challenge. I'll be sharing what God shares with me.
Tuesday, January 3, 2012
Yes, it's 2012 and already three days are gone of the new year. Time goes so fast any more. I remember the days when summer seemed to never end. I remember the days when an hour seemed like an eternity. Where have those days gone? Time is so precious, once it's gone you can never get it back. Is it our age or the age we live in? The bible speaks of the end times...Mark 13:20 "Unless the Lord had shortened those days, no life would have been saved; but for the sake of the elect, whom He chose, HE SHORTENED THE DAYS." It makes you wonder doesn't it?