Thought For The Day 01/08/13

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The Original “Jail House Rock(ers)”! 

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paul and Silas

https://www.lds.org/liahona/2003/10/paul-and-silas-in-prison?lang=eng

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As a child born in the 50’s but growing up in the 60’s etc, my perception of the term “Jailhouse Rock” stems from the tune made famous by Elvis Presley and re-released by the Blues Brothers. It is a song whose lyrics begin with these words…”The warden threw a party in the county jail…”. But this morning I got a whole new perspective of the term  “Jailhouse Rock” as I passed the message board in front of a local church while I was taking Landon to daycare. And since the inspiration for my posts often comes out of the blue, today I am going to talk about two of the very first “Jail House Rock(ers)”. Yes, we are talking pre Elvis. In fact, we are talking pre dates with three digits! The “Jail House Rock(ers)” I am referring to rocked the world around AD 49-52!

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As told to us in the Book of Acts, the Apostles, left with the mission of spreading God’s message throughout the “world”, chose to divide and conquer, so to speak, and head out in many different directions, knowing that this was the way to reach the multitude. Two men, Paul and Silas, were both Roman citizens, but they were also believers who sought to share God’s word, and together, on what would be Paul’s second missionary journey, they head out, directed by a vision from the Holy Spirit. The pair arrive in Philippi, Macedonia, and on the Sabbath, go to the river to pray and share testimony with others who are also there. One, a women named Lydia, listened, believed and was baptized into God’s family. She provides food and shelter to Paul and Silas, enabling them to continue their mission of spreading God’s word in the region.

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Another woman who was drawn to Paul and Silas was a slave girl who was possessed of an evil spirit. She was also able to predict the future and made much money because of this “gift”, for her owners, who were both rich and influential men in the area. Now even though she followed the pair, shouting that they were sent to show others the way to salvation, she was, in fact, a distraction, through her actions, to others coming, and so the Holy Spirit allowed Paul to banish the demon from the woman. Acts 16:16-18 ESV tells the tale.  “As we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a slave girl who had a spirit of divination and brought her owners much gain by fortune-telling. She followed Paul and us, crying out, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to you the way of salvation.” And this she kept doing for many days. Paul, having become greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And it came out that very hour.” And while this had liberated the woman possessed, it certainly angered her wealthy owners who capture Paul and Silas, and take the pair to the market place for the community. Once there, the words of the slave owners turn the population against the Apostles, and Paul and Silas are condemned, beaten and imprisoned!

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Now the jailer was ordered by the leaders to keep Paul and Silas secured in such a way that it would be impossible for them to get free, and so the jailer places them into “stocks”. However, despite being bloody and wounded from abuse, they did not lament their circumstances. Instead, Paul and Silas began singing songs of praise, knowing that Jesus had suffered far worse than they were. (Acts 16:25, “And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard.”) Their songs began turning the hearts of other prisoners who had been found guilty of terrible offenses against society, when suddenly, a huge earthquake struck, and it not just opened the cell doors but the chains fell from the bodies of the prisoners, as well! The jailer, who had been sleeping, awoke at the quaking and became frantic, sure he would be killed. But Paul calms his fears telling him, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you andyour household.” from Acts 16:31 NASV. His heart touched by the finger of God, and now, seeing the truth, the jailer believed, and before long, the man who had treated them so cruelly, began to wash the wounds of the Apostles.

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Now rather than being angry at what happened, the leaders who had Paul and Silas imprisoned, realized the folly of their ways, given the legal status as Roman citizens of the pair, begged them to leave the city. But the mission had been completed. Paul and Silas had completed their mission as  “Jail House Rock(ers)”. But their time of sharing the good news was not over, and they leave to continue teaching and preaching in others places!

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Be ready to spread the word whether or not the time is right. Point out errors, warn people, and encourage them. Be very patient when you teach.

2 Timothy 4:2 (God’s Word 1995)

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During the up-coming days of a brand New Year, please remember the millions of our brothers and sisters who continue to suffer from the effects of Superstorm Sandy. Give as much as you can, as often as you can to the following organizations. Your gift might just mean a family who has lost everything might just have something to smile about!

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Staten Island Gift Cards For Relief
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For information, visit
or

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The Robin Hood Relief Fund

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121212concert

“121212” The Concert For Sandy Relief

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Call 1-855-465- HELP (4357)

or visit

http://www.121212concert.org/

or

Twitter #121212concert

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Copyright © 2011-2013 “MandysPath” Ministry

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About Mandy Bruscella

Mandy's Story: As a Registered Professional Nurse with Certification in a number of specialties including home care, I was afforded the opportunity of working closely with various Social Service Agencies in NY and NJ. ~ A lifelong Christian, I was ordained as a Presbyterian deacon in 1993 and, after relocating to SC in 2000, elected to become ordained as a non-denominational minister. ~ I established "MandysPath" Ministry in 2011. "MandysPath" Ministry is a member of Pacific Life Church, El Sobrante, CA, network of ministries. ~ I direct an outreach ministry in an alternative setting, providing spiritual care to a congregation of more than 500 people from around the world via the Internet. ~ As part of this outreach, I write a daily faith based blog. In March, 2012 I was asked to become a board member of Heroes For Children which is a non-profit foundation, established to assists the Guardian ad Litem program of Horry County, SC. Guardians ad Litem are a group of court appointed advocates who represent the best interests of children in Family Court proceedings involving allegations of abuse or neglect. Working closely with these men and women who make a difference in the lives of children, I completed training and have been sworn in to serve as a Guardian ad Litem for the state of South Carolina . ~ I have been married since 1975 to a wonderful man, Daniel. I have a son Daniel and his wife Melissa who live in NYC. My daughter Sabrina and my grandson Landon live here in SC. ~ My father Harold continues to share his wisdom with me and is responsible for many of the ideas I write about!

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