Finding God in the Mystery of every day

Leviticus 19:15 You shall do no injustice in judgement; you shall not be partial to the poor nor defer to the great, but you are to judge your neighbor fairly. (NASB)

A strange and horrifying thing has taken place in American jurisprudence. Civil courts seem to have supplanted the law courts as the rule, rather than the final recourse. Understandably, it is a response to the absolute failure of the law itself as it seems to have been stretched beyond all understanding, no doubt, by well- meaning individuals.

The verse above is clear enough, but a further reading and meditation of this often overlooked, but extremely important chapter will no doubt give you insight into God’s heart of compassion for all people.

Larry M Lawrence

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Finding God in the Mystery of every day

The thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy. But I came that hey may have life and have it abundantly. John 10:10 (NASB)

Sooner or later it seems that everyone encounters the predation of thieves that live among us.

How we respond to thieves after the initial rush of anger and frustration should I think in the long run be a little more creative than just tossing them into jail.

Jesus would have us forgive the thief, of course. But perhaps we should also try to learn from the experience and discover if possible better ways to provide for our own security tapping in to the knowledge base used by those thieves.

Justice will come to the thieves by God’s hand. If we do our part to interdict them they will soon look elsewhere for their thievery.

Sending for the next few days via cell phone. Computer hacked, in for repair.

Finding God in the mystery of every day

030601 Finding God in the Mystery of every day

Your comments or questions are welcome

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Matthew 6: 31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

            Sometimes we need to take a moment and bring things into focus. It is axiomatic that what Jesus is telling those who are listening, no doubt the twelve, but possibly others wandering by as well, that they would not really be able to achieve that righteousness of which He spoke with any kind of (and here’s the trendy word) “sustainability”. We might by our own strength of will be able to frame a righteous response to a situation, but to live up to the simplest expression of the law of God, the decalogue, the Ten Commandments, (Exodus 20) is frankly impossible without divine help, which in this instance foreshadows the coming of the empowering Holy Spirit. (Acts 2)

            For many years I heard the words of the “Sermon on the Mount” (Matthew 5-7) thrown down as a gauntlet, daring me to take it up and face Jesus’ words as a challenge. In my failure, I despaired and soon gave up even trying all the while haunted by the words. Only when I began t see the Bible as a whole and to read it with that expectation did I come to understand the internal sickness of sin and its viral effect upon the whole human race, The only cure for sin is the indwelling Holy Spirit of God, the mediate presence of Christ in the world today.

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Blessings

Larry

Finding God in the Mystery of every day

030507 Finding God in the Mystery of every day

Your comments or questions are welcome

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Acts 4 Now as they spoke to the people, the priests, the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees came upon them, being greatly disturbed that they taught the people and preached in Jesus the resurrection from the dead. And they laid hands on them, and put them in custody until the next day, for it was already evening. However, many of those who heard the word believed; and the number of the men came to be about five thousand.

 Acts 5:12b And they were all with one accord in Solomon’s Porch

            In regard to the matter of ecclesiastical authority it should come as no surprise that there is a need to manage the movement, safety and comfort of large groups of people. No matter how I think about it I believe that the disciples were hard put to manage the success of Peter’s preaching without the help of the Holy Spirit. Many of you have no doubt participated in some sort of mass demonstration in your lifetimes. (i.e. the million man march, promise keepers, pro-life etc.) For every gathering larger than a couple of dozen people someone or several someones had to organize, procure, and provide for the safety and satisfaction of the people who had chosen to participate. Scripture does not elaborate unfortunately God no doubt believing that the need was obvious.

            “So what?” You may ask in frustration. The point is this. That need over the centuries has been filled either well or poorly by people who like yourself came to the Lord full of sin and self-interest. Rising to positions of power either by accolade or usurpation they have constituted the authority and expression of the Christian church from the beginning. The thing that must be understood is that none of these are God or Jesus. Their authority and their power over the people of Christ is ever under scrutiny and should always be taken “with a grain of salt”.

Cover image Found in the Rubble, a prequel

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Blessings

Larry

Finding God in the Mystery of every day

030506 Finding God in the Mystery of every day

Your comments or questions are welcome

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Matthew 21:23When He entered the temple area, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to Him while He was teaching, and said, “By what authority are You doing these things, and who gave You this authority?”

            Jesus was confronted by the priests as He entered the Temple courts. Quite the contrast. A simple carpenter’s Son with no appearance of position or authority and yet he commanded the attention of the people and incurred the ire of the priests who saw in Him a threat to their positions of comfort and authority. It is just so today. Large denominations are falling apart as the leaders of these groups seek to bend and mold themselves to the times and “adapt” scripture for a new age. Just as the priests in Jesus’ day these leaders want to water down the harder aspects of scripture that call you and I to turn away from sin and walk a straight and narrow upward way following our Shepherd and King Jesus.

            From the very beginning there has been foreshadowed the disconnect between Godly authority as spoken by Jesus in the Gospels and the scriptures and what I would have to term Ecclesiastical authority. There is a blueprint to be found in the Bible that shows the way to deal with the aberrations of culture. Perhaps the words of Paul to the Colossians say it most clearly. 3Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them.

Finding God in the Mystery of every day

030505 Finding God in the Mystery of every day

Your comments or questions are welcome

Contact me at larrymlawrence.com or,

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Hebrews 10:35-36 (New American Standard Bible)Therefore, do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God, you may receive what was promised.

            When we attempt to compartmentalize our faith and the expression of that faith in the public arena we are literally setting our spiritual lives adrift in a very polluted sea of conflicting ideas. With out the guidance of the Holy Spirit we lose all sight of what God has said constitutes righteousness, and the pioneer of our faith, that is Jesus.

            If you do not want the world to know that you are a Christian then you should plan now for the “second death” promised in Revelation 2, 20, 21. When our cowardice shows most plainly is in the moment when, just as Peter in the outer court of the priests (Matthew 26, Mark 14, John 18). It is at that moment when we are suddenly reminded of Jesus’ patient and forgiving love, we find ourselves convicted and ashamed to the point of tears for our sin of omission and our denial.

Help us, Lord Jesus. Grant us courage.

Finding God in the Mystery of every day

030504 Finding God in the Mystery of every day

Your comments or questions are welcome

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Job 14:1“Man, who is born of woman,
Is [a]short-lived and full of turmoil.
Like a flower he comes out and withers.
He also flees like a shadow and does not remain.
You also open Your eyes on him
And bring]him into judgment with Yourself
.

            The plant above is an orchid. Beautiful by any standard, but fragile in the extreme. So, what’s the point? In the passage above Job is speaking about death. He is quite familiar with the human condition and is grieving the loss of everything in his life. The faith life of many who at one point accept the grace of God in Jesus’ sacrifice for their sins, if not nurtured n the warm and comforting fellowship of the body of believers will soon wither and die just as in the illustration above. We cannot walk alone apart from the body. If we do then death is certain and we will face the most terrible of judgements. We need each other. We are meant to be parts of a larger whole that is one body made up of many members.

            As a pastor I feel I wasted many hours chasing after, praying for and beseeching half-hearted folk who chose worldly pleasures over the rigors of fellowship in the body, that is the Church. Hear this, COVID IS NO EXCUSE. Sitting alone and watching a worship service on a computer screen is in no way participating in the fellowship of believers. You will wither and die in your faithlessness.

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Introducing the Much Anticipated Book 5 in The Whitney Chronicles Suspense Series

Xulon Press presents historical fiction intertwined with suspense and Christian themes – for anyone who loves an adventure and a mystery.

MAITLAND, FL—Author Larry M. Lawrence continues his fiction book series

in The Whitney Chronicles 5: Echoes of the Past ($15.99, paperback, 9781662855344; $7.99, e-book, 9781662855351).

In this fifth installment of the series, Lawrence begins this suspenseful story with a disturbing nightmare followed by a mysterious phone call. Olivia, the wife of Josiah Whitney, is awakened to thoughts of a life shattering reality. Described is the appearance of an old farmhouse, long abandoned, or so it seems. It sits on the brow of a hill off the beaten path, on a little used road in the Western Piedmont region of North Carolina. When passing by the house on the highway below during evening hours, one might hear or think they hear, the sound of human sobbing coming from the old place. As the plot thickens, readers will witness how often times, memories can make an unexpected comeback during restless nights. Like waves crashing on a stormy shore, those memories force their way into the conscious mind.

When asked what inspired Lawrence to pen the topic of book 5 in his riveting series, Lawrence said he was inspired by, “Travels in the Western Piedmont and the Blue Ridge. Stories and tales from the Appalachian highlands.”

Larry M. Lawrence was born in upstate New York. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Biblical Studies. He is an author, songwriter, musician and a retired Pastor. In addition, he was a former caterer and sporting goods store owner, among several other professions. Lawrence had the extreme privilege of serving as lead pastor in Olean NY, Niagara Falls NY, La Fargeville, NY and Laurinburg NC. He has been married to his wife, Jane, for nearly fifty years and they reside in the countryside west of St. Louis. He is currently serving as Worship leader at his home Church in Union, MO. Lawrence began this journey of ministry of writing to encourage others, especially those of retirement age or beyond to try new things, to hope for the here and now and to re-establish ties with family and friends. He publishes a devotional blog each day at larrymlawrence.com titled, Finding God in the Mystery of every day. Although he is semi-disabled, he loves to spend time with his grandchildren. He also enjoys contemporary Christian worship music and has even travelled with a band in the Carolinas, Pennsylvania and in New York.

###

Xulon Press, a division of Salem Media Group, is the world’s largest Christian self-publisher, with more than 15,000 titles published to date. The Whitney Chronicles 5: Echoes of the Past is available online through xulonpress.com/bookstore, amazon.com, and barnesandnoble.com.

Finding God in the Mystery of every day

030503 Finding God in the Mystery of every day

Your comments or questions are welcome

Contact me at larrymlawrence.com or,

e-mail- larrymlawrence@larrymlawrence.com  (*New e-mail), or

on facebook search Larry Lawrence Mysteries, Twitter search @LarryLa27767062, LinkedIn, Instagram, Tumblr

Acts 8: But Saul began ravaging the church, entering house after house; and he would drag away men and women and put them in prison.

Philip in Samaria

Therefore, those who had been scattered went through places [c]preaching the word. Philip went down to the city of Samaria and began proclaiming the [d]Christ to them. The crowds were paying attention with one mind to what was being said by Philip, as they heard and saw the [e]signs which he was performing. For in the case of many who had unclean spirits, they were coming out of them shouting with a loud voice; and many who had been paralyzed or limped on crutches were healed. So there was much rejoicing in that city.

            No, it’s not a model of the Star Wars Death Star. It’s a dandelion head ready to scatter its seed. So what? You might ask. Well, I only shar this along with the accompanying text to illustrate Jesus’ desire for His disciples to bloom where they are planted. It was the same for the Israelite captives carried off to exile in Babylon many years before Jesus was born. Jeremiah the prophet told the captives to settle down, yes settle down in their captivity and blossom where He had placed them. (See Jeremiah 29:4-9)

            Philip was merely obeying the edict from Jesus to make disciples as he was going along. (My translation) The miraculous aspects of this text are not up for debate. The location (Samaria) was a place traditionally “offensive” to the Jews. But, in the wake of this home-grown diaspora Philip merely acted in character for one who obeys Christ.

…more to come

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Contact: Larry M Lawrence

Email: larrymlawrence@larrymlawrence.com

https://larrymlawrence.com

Forget the Politics – Human Beings Are In Need and In Danger

Xulon Press presents an original work of Christian suspense.

MAITLAND, FL—Author Larry M. Lawrence delights fans with this fourth installment of The Whitney Chronicles 4, No Greater Love ($17.49, paperback, 9781662855320; $8.99, e-book, 9781662855337).

Josiah returns in this newest book and wastes no time in coming face-to-face with coyotes and drug cartels that take advantage of immigrants and their families, caring more for their pockets and politics than their passengers’ prosperity.

“Living in North Carolina where there is a significant Hispanic population, I sensed a sort of underlying desperation and stoic resolution among the people to avoid interaction outside of their small groups. I hope to communicate through this story that there are those who would like to come alongside and welcome newcomers,” said Lawrence.

Larry M. Lawrence is an author, songwriter, musician and retired pastor of 22 years with a BA in Biblical Studies. He currently resides in Missouri with his wife Jane and serves as worship leader at his home church in Union, MO.

###

Xulon Press, a division of Salem Media Group, is the world’s largest Christian self-publisher, with more than 15,000 titles published to date. The Whitney Chronicles 4, No Greater Love is available online through xulonpress.com/bookstore, amazon.com, and barnesandnoble.com.

Finding God in the Mystery of every day

030502 Finding God in the Mystery of every day

Your comments or questions are welcome

Contact me at larrymlawrence.com or,

e-mail- larrymlawrence@larrymlawrence.com  (*New e-mail), or

on facebook search Larry Lawrence Mysteries, Twitter search @LarryLa27767062, LinkedIn, Instagram, Tumblr

Luke 22:25 And He said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those who exercise authority over them are called ‘benefactors.’ 26 But not so among you; on the contrary, he who is greatest among you, let him be as the younger, and he who governs as he who serves. 27 For who is greater, he who sits at the table, or he who serves? Is it not he who sits at the table? Yet I am among you as the One who serves.

            Once again Jesus “undoes” the perceptions and ideas of the twelve, and for all of the rest of us. In this society of ours, so much like the social picture then the “exalted ones” were basking in their privilege to the detriment of others and the most lowly suddenly in this moment were exalted far above their perceived station. How antithetical to our thinking I this idea? Remember the old camp song from Sunday school summertime picnics? “If you want to be first in God’s kingdom, Learn to be the servant of all…”

            This seems to be forgotten by most of us as time goes on and we continue to “elevate” the least worthy of our neighbors to higher and higher positions of authority over us. We really should pray for those pathetic souls as in the final analysis so much will be demanded of them. The accounting at the last for the choices they have made, the policies they have implemented and the people they have excluded in their lust for power will ultimately be a price they will be unwilling to pay. Yes, pray for our leaders, no matter what they are doing, no matter what they have inflicted upon you for they are in God’s hands. See also Romans 13:1. Proverbs 21:1 et al

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

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Email: larrymlawrence@larrymlawrence.com

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Exciting Third Book in Fictional Series is a Must-Have For Readers who Appreciate Suspense and History Mixed With Hope and Inspiration

Xulon Press presents entertaining fiction for anyone who has experienced loss and made new relationships in the wake of tragedy.

MAITLAND, FL—Author Larry M. Lawrence pens book 3 in the series, returns with more edge-of-your-seat suspense in The Whitney Chronicles 3: The Weight of Mountains($16.49, paperback, 9781662855306; $7.99, e-book, 9781662855313).

In this third installment of the series, Larry M. Lawrence provides the continuing adventure in the life of Josiah Whitney. While honeymooning in the Blue Ridge Mountains with his new wife, Olivia, he receives an urgent call from his son, John. Then, in a matter of mere hours, Josiah meets up with an old colleague and is swept up in a deadly game of smuggling and intrigue, leading to a desperate kidnapping. Readers will be enthralled to discover that smuggling of animal parts and plants, a lucrative business, is mainly controlled by criminal interests from different parts of the globe. This unscrupulous situation leads to an explosive confrontation. Will Josiah and Olivia, survive this treacherous encounter?

When asked about the inspiration for the topic of his third book in the series, Lawrence said, “I lived in North Carolina at the time of the rockslide in the story. I have also been concerned with, and have taught hunter safety and I am concerned about the illicit and unscrupulous killing of bears and plundering precious plant resources for profit in foreign markets.”

Larry M. Lawrence was born in upstate New York. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Biblical Studies. He is an author, songwriter, musician and a retired Pastor. In addition, he was a former caterer and sporting goods store owner, among several other professions. Lawrence had the extreme privilege of serving as lead pastor in Olean NY, Niagara Falls NY, La Fargeville, NY and Laurinburg NC. He has been married to his wife, Jane, for nearly fifty years and they reside in the countryside west of St. Louis. He is currently serving as Worship leader at his home Church in Union, MO. Lawrence began this journey of ministry of writing to encourage others, especially those of retirement age or beyond to try new things, to hope for the here and now and to re-establish ties with family and friends. He publishes a devotional blog each day at larrymlawrence.com titled, Finding God in the Mystery of every day. Although he is semi-disabled, he loves to spend time with his grandchildren. He also enjoys contemporary Christian worship music and has even travelled with a band in the Carolinas, Pennsylvania and in New York.

###

Xulon Press, a division of Salem Media Group, is the world’s largest Christian self-publisher, with more than 15,000 titles published to date. The Whitney Chronicles 3: The Weight of Mountains is available online through xulonpress.com/bookstore, amazon.com, and barnesandnoble.com.

Finding God in the Mystery of every day

030501 Finding God in the Mystery of every day

Your comments or questions are welcome

Contact me at larrymlawrence.com or,

e-mail- larrymlawrence@larrymlawrence.com  (*New e-mail), or

on facebook search Larry Lawrence Mysteries, Twitter search @LarryLa27767062, LinkedIn, Instagram, Tumblr

Psalm 46:9He makes wars to cease to the end of the earth;
He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two;
He burns the chariots with fire.
10 “Stop 
striving and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted on the earth.”
11 The Lord of armies is with us;
The God of Jacob is our stronghold. 

Orion Nebula from the Hubbel telescope

            This call from God to “stop striving” seems so antithetical to the way we live our lives today. In our day we have replaced the one true God with the various Gods of entertainment, money, what we call success, sport, and every other excess of the human mind and body. From the beginning of the day our faces reflect the glow of whatever screen we watch rather than reflecting the glory of God. We have forgotten the very first words of the Ten Commandments; Exodus 20:3 “You shall have no other gods before Me. The image above from the Hubbel space telescope reminds me that there is far more in this universe than my pitiful preferences. When God commanded “BE STILL” (Perhaps more familiar translation NKJV Psalm 46:10) the “sons of Korah” (Descendants of Moses’ cousin) It was to encourage the Israelites to look to their God and not to the nations around them for their validation. Today, nothing presented as “normal” in most cinema or music reflect the truth of God as we understand it.

…more to come

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Larry M Lawrence

Email: larrymlawrence@larrymlawrence.com

https://larrymlawrence.com

If You Ever Thought The Adventure Left Your Life After Retirement, Think Again!

Xulon Press presents an original work of Christian suspense.

MAITLAND, FL—Author Larry M. Lawrence continues his series with this second installment in The Whitney Chronicles 2: Still Life ($16.49, paperback, 9781662855146; $7.99, e-book, 9781662855153).

Josiah and Olivia must lean heavily on God to survive after an elderly woman disappears in the Great Dismal Swamp of eastern North Carolina.  Josiah must confront an old nemesis in a tale of treachery, revenge, smuggling and international money laundering.

“I began this journey of ministry of writing to encourage especially those of retirement age or beyond to try new things, to hope for the here and now and to re-establish ties with family and friends,” said Lawrence.

Larry M. Lawrence is an author, songwriter, musician and retired pastor of 22 years with a BA in Biblical Studies. He currently resides in Missouri with his wife Jane and serves as worship leader at his home church in Union, MO.

###

Xulon Press, a division of Salem Media Group, is the world’s largest Christian self-publisher, with more than 15,000 titles published to date. The Whitney Chronicles 2: Still Life is available online through xulonpress.com/bookstore, amazon.com, and barnesandnoble.com.