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A Light for My Path

The Solar Eclipse
Sat, 19 Aug 2017 12:47:39 +0000

A Light for My Path is a ministry of Christian Counseling & Educational Services.

Volume 563

This devotional can be read online at www.ccesonline.com/devotionals/

Isaiah 45:6-7 (NKJV) That they may know from the rising of the sun to its setting that there is none besides Me. I am the Lord, and there is no other. I form the light and create darkness, I make peace and create calamity; I, the Lord, do all these things.

August 21, 2017 will be a remarkable day in American history as we experience the first total solar eclipse visible in the continental U.S. since 1979! This time, though, the 70-mile-wide path of total blackout will stretch from Oregon diagonally southeast to South Carolina, making it the first time a total solar eclipse has traveled from shore to shore in America since 1918.

Although the duration of totality will be only a second or so in some places along its journey, it will last around two and a half minutes along the center of the path. The moon will completely cover the sun and its atmosphere blocking out all light so that it will look and feel like the middle of the night. Even bright stars will most likely be visible. Areas near this path will experience a partial eclipse with some darkness, and the areas farther away may not notice much out of the ordinary.

There are many different views on what this astronomical event means and how people want to spend their day. Many folks plan to celebrate this event with wild parties without seeing God's hand in it, while others will delight in viewing the eclipse as one of His most striking displays of power and beauty. Some Christians view this dramatic act of nature as a message from God calling for America to repent and turn back to Him. There are believers who also feel this is a fulfillment of Bible prophecy signaling the coming of Christ.

In reality, August 21, 2017, should be no different than any other day for Christ's followers. Every day we should acknowledge as a gift from God, recognize His power and total authority over all of nature, and delight in the beauty of creation around us. And at all times we are called to celebrate His goodness and love as we seek to live righteously before Him.

For more details about the solar eclipse, check out the NASA website: https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov and Answers in Genesis www.answersingenesis.org

PRAYER: Almighty God, we truly thank and praise You for the opportunity to witness Your awesome greatness in this once-in-a-lifetime event. May it stir our hearts to see anew the wonders of your power.

WORDS TO PONDER: 'To me, this is the most incredible thing in all of creation.' -Dr. Danny Faulkner, Staff astronomer for Answers in Genesis

By Ann Shorb ©Copyright, Ann Shorb, 2017 The New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


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The Source of My Power
Sat, 12 Aug 2017 15:37:22 +0000

A Light for My Path is a ministry of Christian Counseling & Educational Services.

Volume 563

This devotional can be read online at www.ccesonline.com/devotionals/

JOHN 15:5 (AMPC) I am the Vine; you are the branches. Whoever lives in Me and I in him bears much (abundant) fruit. However, apart from Me [cut off from vital union with Me] you can do nothing.

Mmmm . . . The blueberry muffin I brought home from the store looked and smelled delicious as I placed it in my tin to keep it fresh until morning. I was tempted to eat it right then, but I didn't. It was my special treat for breakfast'-and I could hardly wait!

The next day was a special one, and I was celebrating by making a delicious breakfast. The table was set with nice dishes, fresh fruit, and a pot of steeping tea. Finally, I placed the muffin in the toaster oven to heat while I plated my omelet and sausage. I had timed everything carefully so it would all be ready at the same time, but when I reached for my piping hot muffin, it was cold! My heart sank, as I realized the oven was not plugged in-and without the necessary power, it just couldn't do its job.

While this was a disappointment and a temporary delay, I knew the remedy was simple . . . just put the plug in the socket and let the power flow from the electrical current to the heater and all would be well.

How quickly my thoughts flew to the words of Jesus as He instructed His disciples just after their last supper together!

'I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing,' (John 15:5, NKJV).

Christ pictured for them their essential need to stay closely connected to Him so that His strength, and all of His life-giving resources, would flow from Him through them. Only then could they do the job He gave them to do and produce an abundant harvest of fruit.

Maintaining that vital union with Christ means spending time alone in His Word, in study, and in prayer. It means listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit who not only guides us, but empowers us to do the job for which we were designed. All this takes time, and intentional planning and effort on our part, but Christ alone is the source of our power for daily living. There absolutely is no other!

PRAYER: O Lord, I need You desperately! Truly You are the source of all my strength. I realize that without You, I can accomplish nothing.

WORDS TO PONDER: 'The phrase 'abiding in Christ' pictures an intimate, close relationship, not just a superficial acquaintance.' -Unknown

By Ann Shorb © Ann Shorb, 2017

Scriptures taken from Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC). Copyright © 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation The New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


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Guidelines for Christian Conduct
Sat, 05 Aug 2017 08:59:59 +0000

A Light for My Path is a ministry of Christian Counseling & Educational Services.

Volume 563

This devotional can be read online at www.ccesonline.com/devotionals/

PSALM 48:14 (NKJV) For this is God, Our God forever and ever; He will be our guide Even to death.

Knowing the right thing to do isn't always easy! There are many specific principles given in the Word of God telling us how He wants us to live, but what about those "gray areas" where nothing specific is stated? The Bible gives us general principles to follow in determining what to do in those cases. Here are several guidelines that will help you find direction in those unspecified areas:

I Corinthians 10:31 (NKJV) Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.

I Corinthians 6:12 (NKJV) All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.

Romans 14:13 (NKJV) Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather resolve this, not to put a stumbling block or a cause to fall in our brother's way.

II Peter 3:11, 14 (NKJV) Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness . . . be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless.

Read these scriptures and meditate on them. Then ask yourself these three questions about the conversation or actions you are questioning:

Will doing or saying these things honor and please the Lord?

Would doing or saying these things help me or hurt me in the long run? Will it help or hurt others?

Would I do or say these things if I could see Jesus standing right next to me?

Just imagine how different life would be if you and I lived daily by the principles in these verses! Knowing that God's Spirit is ready and to guide us each day, the question becomes, 'Am I willing to ask God to help me make the changes necessary to live His way?'

Get a printable copy of this worksheet.

Lord, in a generation where holy living seems to be a thing of the past, please help me to be so in tune with You, Your Spirit, and Your Word that every decision I make is guided by Your thoughts.

By Ann Shorb

©Copyright 2011, Ann Shorb

Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved


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A Dedicated Life
Sat, 29 Jul 2017 13:55:55 +0000

A Light for My Path is a ministry of Christian Counseling & Educational Services.

Volume 563

This devotional can be read online at www.ccesonline.com/devotionals/

II TIMOTHY 4:7 (KJV) I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.

In the last three devotionals, we've looked at three different songs:

What do all these have in common? They were written by the same person'-Eliza Jane Edmunds Hewitt (1851-1920). Interestingly, publishers in her era hesitated to include in their hymnals too many songs by the same author, so she and other writers used pen names for many of their works.

Raised in a loving Christian home in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Eliza was taught the Word of God all through her youth. At age 18, having lived through the Civil War era, and completing high school as valedictorian of her class, Eliza became a dedicated teacher, not only in the public schools, but in her church as well.

At age 33, her days of school teaching ended suddenly when an unruly student stuck her with his slate injuring her back so severely that she spent six months bedridden in a heavy body cast. Years of recovery and limited activity followed.

Faced with her inability and inadequacy, Eliza buried herself in deep study of God's Word, and simply shifted gears. Instead of teaching in a classroom, her love of children and her deep passion for leading them to Christ found an outlet through the songs, stories, and Sunday School literature she wrote.

She also wrote the lyrics to many well-known hymns such as 'Sunshine in My Soul', 'Will There Be Any Stars in My Crown', 'More About Jesus Would I Know', 'Singing I Go Along Life's Road', 'Give me Thy Heart', and 'Stepping in the Light'. Would she have written any of these if she had not been forced to stop her teaching?

Although the effects of her injury continued, Eliza Hewitt had an active and productive life serving in children's ministries in various churches in the Philadelphia area. She died at the age of 68 having lived a life committed to knowing and serving the Lord Jesus Christ in spite of challenges and changes. What a testimony and inspiration!

PRAYER: Dear Lord, saints like Eliza Hewitt inspire me to know and serve You more each day. Please use my inadequacies for Your glory.

WORDS TO PONDER: 'Our inadequacy can turn out to be a blessing by driving us into a stronger relationship with God. We can say with Paul, 'I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me' (2 Cor. 12:9).' -Charles F. Stanley


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Teaching Through Songs
Sat, 22 Jul 2017 13:07:58 +0000

A Light for My Path is a ministry of Christian Counseling & Educational Services.

Volume 563

This devotional can be read online at www.ccesonline.com/devotionals/

COLOSSIANS 3:16 (KJV) Let the word of God dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms, hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

One of the most popular and effective methods of teaching children is through the use of songs and choruses. E. E. Hewitt (1851-1920) knew this well'-so well, in fact, that she spent much of her life writing lyrics, and often composing music for children's ministries.

She often took stories or other truths from the Bible and put them in rhyming form to capture youngsters' attention. The little song below was included in the Dew Drops Hymnal for young children which was published in 1895 by William J. Kirkpatrick. He wrote the music for this chorus and many of E. E. Hewitt's other songs.

THE TWO MITES

A certain poor widow in Zion one day, Went up to the beautiful Temple to pray; A gift of affection she gratefully brought To honor our Father, whose blessing she sought.

Chorus: Give, give, ev'ry one give Whatever we can let us cheerfully bring; Give, give, ev'ry one give Some off'ring of love to Jesus our King.

No money had she but those two little mites, But 'tis in the lowly His mercy delight; The best she can offer she would not withhold, Tho' others were bringing their silver and gold.

Chorus

But there by the treasury Jesus she found, His holy eyes watching the people around; Like dewdrops of blessing His worlds gently fall, The widow's small off'ring is worth more than all.

Chorus

For Jesus is watching the treasury still; He knows all we're doing for good and for ill; The mites of the children, if given in love, Will gain sweet approval, His smile from above.

Chorus

The biblical truths presented in E. E. Hewitt's songs were simple yet profound. You can be certain that long after they left the children's Sunday School department, many of the children she taught through music remembered them for years to come.

If you had the privilege of attending church when you were young, take a few moments to think back to the songs and principles you learned and how they blessed and guided you over the years. There's a good chance it will bring a smile to your face and put that song in your heart once again!

PRAYER: Thank You, Heavenly Father, for talented writers who used their gifts to give us songs that teach us about You and Your Word. Thank You, too, for teachers who faithfully taught us and gave us the gift of learning through music.


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My Faith Has Found a Resting Place
Sat, 15 Jul 2017 12:28:35 +0000

A Light for My Path is a ministry of Christian Counseling & Educational Services.

Volume 563

This devotional can be read online at www.ccesonline.com/devotionals/

Assured by the Word of God that the death of Jesus Christ on the cross is the foundation for our salvation, Lidie H. Edmunds penned the words to her famous hymn "My Faith Has Found a Resting Place".

My faith has found a resting place, Not in device or creed; I trust the Ever-living One, His wounds for me shall plead.

REFRAIN: I need no other argument, I need no other plea, It is enough that Jesus died, And that he died for me.

REFRAIN

Enough for me that Jesus saves, This ends my fear and doubt, A sinful soul, I come to Him, He'll never cast me out.

REFRAIN

My heart is leaning on the Word, The written Word of God, Salvation by my Savior's name, Salvation through His blood.

REFRAIN

My great Physician heals the sick, The lost He came to save; For me His precious blood He shed, For me His life He gave.

REFRAIN

Each verse of this joyous hymn declares the shed blood of Christ to be our healing from sin and our certainty of salvation. There's no worth in our good works, wealth, education, or fame. It is through Christ alone that we are saved. Therefore, every true believer can say without doubt, "It is enough that Jesus died, and that He died for me!"

PRAYER: Father, thank You for the sacrificial death of Christ on the cross, and for the assurance and hope we have in Him.


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Sing the Wonderous Love of Jesus
Sat, 08 Jul 2017 08:23:34 +0000

A Light for My Path is a ministry of Christian Counseling & Educational Services.

Volume 563

This devotional can be read online at www.ccesonline.com/devotionals/

PSALM 100:2 (KJV) Serve the LORD with gladness: Come before His presence with singing.

One morning I woke up singing 'When We All Get to Heaven'- a song I learned in childhood. Its catchy tune is one we sang often in my church and I frequently sang it at home as well.

If you take a minute to read through the words, you'll find this little song has a powerful and uplifting message as it encourages us to keep our eyes fixed not on the here and now, but on the heavenly prize that awaits those who belong to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Sing the wondrous love of Jesus, Sing His mercy and His grace; In the mansions bright and blessed, He'll prepare for us a place.

REFRAIN: When we all get to heaven, What a day of rejoicing that will be! When we all see Jesus, We'll sing and shout the victory.

While we walk this pilgrim pathway, Clouds will overspread the sky; But when trav'ling days are over, Not a shadow, not a sigh.

REFRAIN

Let us then be true and faithful, Trusting, serving every day; Just one glimpse of Him in glory Will the toils of life repay.

REFRAIN

Onward to the prize before us! Soon His beauty we'll behold; Soon the pearly gates will open, We shall tread the streets of gold.

REFRAIN

-Eliza Edmunds Hewitt, 1851-1920

Thinking about the joy that lies before me certainly puts everything else in focus. It motivates me not only to sing, but to serve the Lord every day as I walk my earthly journey. As you focus on these thoughts, I hope you'll be blessed like I was this morning, and that you'll have a song of joy and hope in your heart the rest of the day!

PRAYER: Lord, thank You for starting my day in such a wonderful way!

RELATED DEVOTIONAL: Praise the LORD! Sept. 26, 2015

By Ann Shorb ©Copyright Ann Shorb, 2015


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The Battle, The Price, The Victory
Sat, 01 Jul 2017 08:15:20 +0000

A Light for My Path is a ministry of Christian Counseling & Educational Services.

Volume 563

This devotional can be read online at www.ccesonline.com/devotionals/

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!

ROMANS 6:23 (NKJV) For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

York County Pennsylvania is an interesting place to live. While it's known for its Pennsylvania Dutch culture, beautiful rolling hills, and farming and food production, what most people don't know is that York County sent more volunteers to the Revolutionary War than any other area involved in that fight. In fact, although it was temporary, the very first U.S. capitol was set up in York, Pennsylvania. There's a tremendous amount of history in this south central section of the state.

Most history buffs who visit Pennsylvania, though, spend their time in Philadelphia, about 100 miles east of here. It's a city filled with museums, memorials and monuments that tell the stories of how our country was established and our freedom won. The most famous building, of course, is Independence Hall where the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were signed. Just walking through the corridors of that great hall reminds us that our freedom wasn't free. There was a battle to be fought, a price to be paid, and a victory to be won.

At another time in history, another war was fought. This one was more intense, and the impact more profound as the Lord Jesus Christ fought and died to gain our freedom from sin and death. There on the lonely Hill of Golgotha, the sinless Prince of Peace allowed Himself to be beaten, bruised, and berated as He became the sacrifice for our sin so that we might live in victory both in this life and in eternity. There was a battle to be fought, a price to be paid, and a victory to be won'-and He did it all for us.

How thankful we should be each and every day for our forefathers whose dream, and desire, and determination all focused on giving us a place to live where we can worship the God who gives us true freedom. May we live to honor Him who, on our behalf, fought the fight, paid the price, and won the victory over sin and death.

PRAYER: As we celebrate our national independence, Father, let us also celebrate the freedom that we have through our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

WORDS TO PONDER: 'To the distinguished character of a Patriot, it should be our highest glory to add the more distinguished character of a Christian.' -George Washington

By Ann Shorb ©Copyright Ann Shorb, 2017 Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


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Nuggets of Hope
Sat, 24 Jun 2017 08:20:22 +0000

A Light for My Path is a ministry of Christian Counseling & Educational Services.

Volume 563

This devotional can be read online at www.ccesonline.com/devotionals/

I CHRONICLES 16:11 (KJV) Seek the LORD and his strength, seek his face continually.

Things just didn't go right last week! It started on Monday morning when I poured hot tea in my stainless steel mug and it came out the bottom! It went from bad to worse through the whole week-a speeding ticket (my first ever!), bad news from a friend, problems with the flooring in my home, a big business disappointment, difficulties for my family, and my own personal physical problems. Everything seemed to go wrong!

Thankfully, right after my very rough Monday morning, the books in my library needed to be arranged and God used that little chore to give me an extra boost that stayed with me through the rest of the difficult week. It's hard for me to put books on the shelf without rummaging through most of them. In fact, the only one I easily managed to move without opening at all was my dictionary! It amazed me how things I previously underlined stood out to me that morning. Here are some of the nuggets of assurance and hope the Lord handed me as I thumbed through the pages of my books:

Psalm 139:17-18 (KJV) How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.

Psalm 37:3-5 (NKJV) Trust in the LORD, and do good; Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness. Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.

Commit your way to the LORD, Trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass.

Isaiah 43:19 (NKJV) Behold, I will do a new thing, Now it shall spring forth; Shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness And rivers in the desert.

Psalm 119:105 (NKJV) Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.

2 Corinthians 9:8 (NKJV) And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.

Hebrews 13:5-8 (NKJV) Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, 'I will never leave you nor forsake you.' So we may boldly say: ' The LORD is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?' Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

Matthew 28:20 (NKJV) . . . lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.'

What precious thoughts! God is with me and God is for me! He will never leave me! No matter how difficult things may be, I simply need to seek His face and He is there providing all I need for every need. Even when I don't see or feel Him, I know He is there.

Thank You, Lord, for giving me reminders of hope that I could carry with me all week long. It helped to remember Your faithfulness and love when the hard things of life came my way.

By Ann Shorb ©Copyright Ann Shorb, 2011

*Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


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The Perfect Model
Sat, 17 Jun 2017 08:22:31 +0000

A Light for My Path is a ministry of Christian Counseling & Educational Services.

Volume 563

This devotional can be read online at www.ccesonline.com/devotionals/

Happy Father's Day!

JOHN 13:15 (NKJV) For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you.

For years I've been telling parents, 'The best way to teach your children anything, is to model it for them.' Children learn how to behave and how to speak by looking at the adults around them. If you want your children to be honest, then you be honest. If you want them to be kind to others, then you demonstrate kindness regularly. If you want them to exercise patience, then be an example of that before them. Modeling is the best way to teach character and virtue to your children'-and there is no exception to that rule!

God the Father teaches His children how He wants us to live in the same way. He instructs us not only through His written Word, The Holy Bible, but He models for us all of the traits of goodness and righteousness that He wants to instill in us.

Ephesians 4:32 (NKJV) And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.

Leviticus 19:2 (NKJV) You shall be holy, for I the LORD your God am holy.

I John 4:7-11 (NKJV) Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

Romans 2:11 (NKJV) For there is no partiality with God.

2 Peter 3:9 (NKJV) The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

Everything that God expects of us as His child, He models for us. Everything! Search the scriptures and you'll see it time after time. But God not only models these qualities for us, but He gives us His indwelling Holy Spirit to actually produce them in us as we yield to Him. We can stop living in our own wisdom and strength, look to Him as the perfect example, and rely on His Spirit to make us all that He wants us to be. It's His desire and delight to be our example. Indeed He is the perfect model for His children.

Prayer: Loving Father, we are so blessed to have such a clear example of how You want us to live. Thank You for the gift of the Holy Spirit who works day by day in our lives to make us more like You.

By Ann Shorb

©Copyright Ann Shorb Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


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