Sunday's Coming has been posted to Don's blog.
Thank you for your prayers for us and for sharing your prayer requests with us. God is still on His Throne and He still answers prayer.
Because He gave,
Don & LaVon Baker
Here are some scriptures that you might find helpful or encouraging.
"For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh, so then they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate."
Ephesians 4:26-27, 32
"Be angry, and do not sin" : do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8
Love suffers long and is kind;
love does not envy;
love does not parade itself,
is not puffed up;
does not behave rudely,
does not seek its own,
is not provoked,
thinks no evil;
does not rejoice in iniquity,
but rejoices in the truth;
bears all things,
believes all things,
hopes all things,
endures all things.
Love never fails.
Amplified Bible (AMP)
But seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right),
and then all these things taken together will be given you besides.
Directive Prayer for couples, most powerful when prayed together:
In the name of Jesus, we rejoice and delight ourselves in You and in one another. I pray You'll draw us nearer to You so that we can know You more intimately, walk with You closely and experience greater intimacy together. I pray that we're conformed to the image of Christ, and that we may be one so that the world may see You in our relationship, and Christ will be glorified in us.
As Your Word says, may we be better together than apart and continually lift each other up. Please strengthen us by Your great power and fill us with all Your fullness so we may walk worthy of Your calling. Let us prefer one another always and walk in Your love.
I pray we're patient and kind to each other; that we're not envious or prideful. I pray we won't behave rudely, seek our own or be easily provoked. May we never go to bed angry, but let us walk in forgiveness continually towards one another, just as You have forgiven us. I pray we won't think evil of one another or rejoice in iniquity, but I pray we'll rejoice with truth. May we bear all things, believe all things, hope all things, and endure all things together. Give us Your love that never fails! Be glorified in us, Lord.
In Jesus' name I pray,
LUKE 18:37 They told him, Jesus of Nazareth is passing by. (identifying His humanity)
38 And he cried out, saying, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” (identifying His Divinity)
39 Then those who went before warned him that he should be quiet; but he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”
40 So Jesus stood still and commanded him to be brought to Him.
41 saying, “What do you want Me to do for you?”
He said, “Lord, that I may receive my sight.”
42 Then Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight; your faith has made you well.” 43 And immediately he received his sight, and followed Him, glorifying God. And all the people, when they saw it, gave praise to God.
If your situation has seemingly reached a point of no return, this is a very effective prayer in many situations:
JESUS, YOU ARE GOING TO HAVE TO HANDLE THIS. I’M DONE.
**Faith When You Can’t See a Thing** (audio message)
The Power of Forgiveness (powerful audio message)
Listen to this and hear it…
A good friend posted on FaceBook, at 3:00 A.M., 2 Corinthians 5: 17. I needed that verse this morning, particularly, and felt that I needed to meditate on it for a while…
17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
I love this verse. It’s one of my favorites. (I say that a lot about many verses.)
I have learned, from my preacher man, Don, if a verse starts with ‘therefore,’ or ‘For,’ or ‘So,’ or ‘and’, or ‘ Now then,’ or ‘However’ … you get the picture… that I should read the previous verse to keep the verse in context and get all out of it that God intended.
This morning, I got a good chuckle out of God’s method, as you notice 2 Corinthians 5:17 starts with ‘Therefore,’ my first clue to read the verse before it.
16 Therefore, from now on, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, yet now we know Him thus no longer.
Among other things, here I learn that ‘the flesh is mentioned,’ confirming the mention of ‘a creation’ and defining ‘old things’ in verse 17.
What? Verse 16 also begins with ‘Therefore,’ so I am intrigued to read verse 15.
15 and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.
The big picture is becoming more clear. But, hey, this verse begins with ‘and’ and ‘and’ isn’t even capitalized in the NKJV, which means that I need to read the first part of that sentence, so I read verse 14.
14 For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died;
‘FOR?’ Now, I’m smiling. God is pointing me to verse 13… that’s 5 verses I’ve read thus far. (Yes, I said ‘thus.’) So, reading backwards…
13 For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; or if we are of sound mind, it is for you.
Do you see it?! Another ‘For!’ Now, I’m really smiling.
12 For we do not commend ourselves again to you, but give you opportunity to boast on our behalf, that you may have an answer for those who boast in appearance and not in heart.
I laughed out loud. Not laughing at the content, but at how much fun I was having at the way God tied these verses together to keep verses from being taken out of context. You think He knew we humans might be tempted to do that? You think?
11 Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are well known to God, and I also trust are well known in your consciences.
How creative, using the word ‘knowing’ to prick my interest to, once more read the previous verse. AND if that wasn’t enough…. ‘therefore.’
10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.
I am getting the whole picture of the content much better now.
9 Therefore we make it our aim, whether present or absent, to be well pleasing to Him.
(Seriously?) I love this!! Stay focused on the content here, LaVon. Yes! It’s about Him.
8 We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.
I have just read ten verses ‘tied’ together to help me understand my life in Christ Jesus.
I love God’s Word!
Of course, now I am all in. This is fun!
7 For we walk by faith, not by sight.
Ahhh, there is is again! I recognize this verse as one that is quoted often, but I must read the previous verse.
6 So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord.
5 Now He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who also has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.
Oh, I see where my confidence comes from ‘now.’ Guaranteed by the Holy Spirit! Yes!
4 For we who are in this tent groan, being burdened, not because we want to be unclothed, but further clothed, that mortality may be swallowed up by life.
This verse certainly not only causes me to want to read the previous verse, but it certainly indicates why I would need to read forward. “This tent?” “Burdened?” “Unclothed??” “Mortality?” Wow!
3 if indeed, having been clothed, we shall not be found naked.
(No capital letter.)
2 For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed with our habitation which is from heaven,
Oh, how I want to go Home, but I must remain until God calls me. He’s not finished with me yet. More accurately, I am not yet fully prepared for my ‘job.’ in Glory.
For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.
He began a chapter with ‘For???’ Well, it is the fifth chapter, after all, and there are chapters before it.
2 Corinthians 4:
16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.
17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory,
18 while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.
Reading the chapters backwards is really fun. It gives a whole new meaning to: “He (or she) knew the Bible backwards and forwards!”
Got to go now. Must read 2 Corinthians 4:… verse 15!
I AM A NEW CREATION!!
March 14, 2014
Dearest family and friends!
It has been another long month and so much to tell you about Kris and about my visit for a week with her in late February. The photo above was taken when we visited her very favorite place, RED Arena Therapeutic Riding Ranch near Dripping Springs, Texas. Kris goes there once a week (weather permitting, of course) to ride Sven, their beautiful Swedish Fjord horse. While I was there that week, Kris and I had several opportunities to go places on our own and RED Arena offered two of those opportunities!
The next great news is that Kris no longer has to wear that cumbersome AFO, a leg brace, on her right leg! The ankle surgery back in December to repair and lengthen her Achilles' tendon was so successful, the doctor has ruled she doesn’t need the brace anymore. Hurray!!! And, as of Thursday’s monthly care meeting, I learned by conference call to that meeting that Kris is now walking ALL the time while there at CORE. Her wheelchair is available if needed, but she walks as much as seven hours a day or more with and without her walker. Someone is always with her, of course, but that walking is amazing.
Her posture is much better and she is now working toward tying her own shoes. That has been helped to a great extent by the steroid injections she received a few weeks back in her right elbow and her right shoulder. It means her right arm is working so much better. Kris is amazing!
With an increase in her nutrition intake amount from four cans to five cans per day, her stamina and her energy seems to be doing better, too. Her walking and sit-to-stand has improved enormously and, believe it or not, they are working with Kris to walk backwards! That, of course, is very tenuous but it serves to help her balance herself even more.
Swallowing continues to improve with more and larger ice chips. The more the better now and, hopefully, some real smooth, light yogurt may be tried again soon. She is improving with the use of a communication board, as well, and her impulsivity is 80 percent gone. I am simply amazed every evening when we Skype at the words she says and things she types. Communication is so improved using her board that she can now contribute to a group therapy session for the gals. How wonderful for Kris after years of not being able to say what she thinks and needs, or expressing her thoughts. God is tremendous! Kris is absolutely delighted with her accomplishments and rightly so. She has earned every bit of praise and all the accolades are hers!!!
As for John, please know that he finished his four rounds of chemo at the Cancer Treatment Center (CTC) near Chicago back in February and, as I write, he is there again now for implantation of a pain pump. The surgery for that was yesterday (Friday) and other procedures and things will be done to relieve some severe pain today. The outcome of the chemo will not be known until they do another scan, so pray, pray, pray.
He has done very well each trip out there for the sessions of chemo, but it really wears him down for several days afterward. We are rejoicing, however, that his wife, Robin, did contact CTC back in the fall. John is far better mentally and has great hope, as do we all.
We continue to be blessed with wonderful friends and loved ones who offer their encouragement and prayers. I simply don’t know what we would have done or would do without that. We rely on God’s strength day to day and keep busy: George is preparing to help put new siding on our house, and I am working part time again at The Palms of Sebring plus writing, writing, writing!
Please continue to pray. It is our greatest encouragement through God.
Blessings and love,
Carol and George