Episode 3 – Device of Torture

We can lean on God … even when struggling with our own devices of torture.

God’s presence so often provides peace and strength when we face periods of struggle, if we will only remember to rely on and trust in Him.

In Psalm 46, we are reminded that “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”

In the early 1800s, an English engineer created a new device intended to be used in prisons as a form of punishment for the inmates. The device forced prisoners to stress every part of their bodies, pushing their arms, legs and minds to their limits. This device is still around today, but it has made its way into more common areas. In fact, some of you may have one in your homes. What is this device of torture device created in 1817 by Sir William Cubitt? None other than the treadmill.

So the next time you face trials and struggles in your life, remember the words of the Psalm and turn your eyes to God. And just think, it could always be worse … you could be exercising.

Episode 2 – The Seal Says It

What lesson can we learn from an old version of the Alabama state seal … and how can it impact us this week?

From 1868-1939, the circular red, white, and blue Alabama state seal featured an image of a bald eagle flying with a banner in its beak. Written on the banner were the words, “Here we rest.”

In Matthew chapter 11, verse 28, Jesus tells us, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”

Or as it says in the Message: “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life.”

Throughout our lives, we experience temporary periods of rest, but they are undoubtedly followed by periods of stress and struggle. The permanent, deep-in-the-soul rest and peace we all seek is available to us, if we trust in Jesus and turn our worries and burdens over to Him. He is the provider of soul-reviving rest.

Episode 1 – Two Brothers

Two brothers … each one making a completely different impact on the same family. How will you influence others today?

Near the end of 1864, a critically-acclaimed, world renowned actor grabbed the shirt collar of a young man who had fallen off a railway platform onto the tracks of a moving train, pulling him away from danger and saving his life. A few months later, the actor received a letter commending him for his act in saving the young man, whose name was Robert Lincoln, son of Abraham Lincoln. As for the name of the actor who had saved him? Edwin Booth, estranged brother of John Wilkes Booth. Two brothers, one bringing a family incredible joy, while the other brought the same family incredible grief.

In Matthew 5, Jesus tells each one of us, “You are the salt of the earth … You are the light of the world … Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in Heaven.”

What we do and say will have an impact on others, and you never know what kind of eternal difference you can make in the life of someone else. Be intentional and pray that you will influence others for the glory of God.