Monday, April 30, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 30

“But as God is true, our word toward you was not yea and nay. For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by us, even by me and Silvanus and Timotheus, was not yea and nay, but in him was yea. For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us” (2 Corinthians 1:18-20).

Today’s Morsel:  We hear a lot from Veterans today that the promises made to them are not being kept. However, we hear politicians saying that they are going to fulfill those promises, but never about when.  The Bible says, “For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself, Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee. And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise” (Hebrews 6:13-15).  One of the things about promises is we must have the patience to wait for them.  Abraham and Sarah tried to help God out with His to them, and we see what condition the world is in today because of it.  The things that God promises us we can be assured He will fulfill.  We just need to trust Him and wait on His timing.  He knows what is best in our lives.

 Sing: Standing on the promises of Christ my King, through eternal ages let His praises ring, glory in the highest I will shout and sing, standing on the promises of God.Standing, standing, standing on the promises of Christ my Savior.  Standing, standing, I’m standing on the promises of God.

Thought For Today:  He will fulfill what He has promised.

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 28

“Have ye not known? have ye not heard? hath it not been told you from the beginning? have ye not understood from the foundations of the earth? It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in: That bringeth the princes to nothing; he maketh the judges of the earth as vanity. Yea, they shall not be planted; yea, they shall not be sown: yea, their stock shall not take root in the earth: and he shall also blow upon them, and they shall wither, and the whirlwind shall take them away as stubble. To whom then will ye liken me, or shall I be equal? saith the Holy One. Lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things, that bringeth out their host by number: he calleth them all by names by the greatness of his might, for that he is strong in power; not one faileth. Why sayest thou, O Jacob, and speakest, O Israel, My way is hid from the LORD, and my judgment is passed over from my God? Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint” 
(Isaiah 40:21-31).

Today’s Morsel:  Surprising news seems to take people a-back.   usually respond with, “What, I can’t believe it.” Or, “WOW, that is so awesome.”  The people in Isaiah's day felt that God had forgotten them. They felt that their cause and case was neglected by Him, and that He did not undertake their cause, nor plead against their enemies, or right their wrongs, and avenge the injuries done them, or deliver them out of the hands of those that contended with them.  And so he asked them, “Why sayest thou, O Jacob, and speakest, O Israel, my way is hid from the LORD, and my judgment is passed over from my God? Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”  If someone has done you wrong, wait on the Lord, be of good courage, and He will make all things beautiful in His time.

Sing:  I know the Lord will make a way for me.  I know the Lord will make away for me.  If I live a holy life, I shun the wrong, and do the right; I know the Lord will make a way for me.  

Thought For Today:  Let God work!

Friday, April 27, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 27

“Then Saul's anger was kindled against Jonathan, and he said unto him, Thou son of the perverse rebellious woman, do not I know that thou hast chosen the son of Jesse to thine own confusion, and unto the confusion of thy mother's nakedness? For as long as the son of Jesse liveth upon the ground, thou shalt not be established, nor thy kingdom. Wherefore now send and fetch him unto me, for he shall surely die” (1 Samuel 20:30-31).

Today’s Morsel:  One of the things about hurt is it can drive you to be angry.  Saul became jealous and angry because he knew that God had rejected him for someone else because of his rebellion.  And when he realized that someone else was David and that his son Jonathan loved David, he wanted to kill them both.  Some people do not realize that God places people in our lives to help us, not to hurt us.  If we allow people who have talents better than we to use them, it helps make the body of Christ more effective.  But if we are afraid that someone else will receive more accolades then us, we will fear and become hurt and angry and go about to inflict pain and suffering on them.  We must remember, that before leadership is discipleship.  If we do not display self-discipline, we can never lead God’s people effectively.

Sing:  Let Jesus lead you.  Let Jesus lead you.  All the way from earth to glory, let Jesus lead you all the way.

Thought For Today:  Before leadership, there must be discipleship.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 26

“Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil; Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow. Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land: But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it” (Isaiah 1:16-20).

Today’s Morsel:  One of the longest-running game shows on television is, “Let’s Make A Deal.”  During the game, if a contestant wins, they are offered a deal for something better.  However, they could get something worse than what they have.  They call that a zonk.  You see, that’s what Satan does to so many.  He tells them let’s make a deal.  You give up the church and that Jesus stuff, and I’ll give you something better.  But most people soon realized it was a zonk.  However, with Jesus, when He says let’s make a deal, He tells you what He will give you, so you know you’re not going to get zonked.  He says, “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”  If we want freedom, then we must be willing to exchange our sins for it, because freedom is never free!

Sing:  I came to Jesus weary worn and sad, He took my sins away, He took my sins away.  And now on Him, I roll my every care, He took my sins away.

Thought For Today:  What are you willing to exchange for freedom?

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 25

“Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks; I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars: And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name's sake hast laboured, and hast not fainted. Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent. But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate” 
(Revelation 2:1-6).

Today’s Morsel:  One of the things that I have come to realize is the world cannot get better until the church gets better.  If the church never gets back into her rightful place, the world will always be turned upside down and lost.  The Lord told the church at Ephesus, “I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.”  The church must always have a love for God, reflect the love of God, and teach the love of God and the things of God.  “For God, so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved” Jesus said, (John 3:16-17).  If the church leaves its love, it leaves Jesus; and if it leaves Jesus, then the world has no hope.

Sing:  It’s the old ship of Zion, it’s the hope for the lost and dying; It's a soul-saving station, it’s the tower of salvation. Well, it’s the Church Triumphant, O’ Lord and it’s built by the hand of the Lord.  I’m talking about the church in the Book of Revelation.  It’s built on the Rock, it’s got a firm foundation.  It’s been through the flood and it’s been through the fire, but one of these days, the Church is gonna move up higher.  It’s the Church Triumphant, O’ Lord, and it’s built by the hand of the Lord.

Thought For Today:  The only hope for the world is the Apostolic Church.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 24

“And the same day, when the even was come, he saith unto them, Let us pass over unto the other side. And when they had sent away the multitude, they took him even as he was in the ship. And there were also with him other little ships. And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into the ship, so that it was now full. And he was in the hinder part of the ship, asleep on a pillow: and they awake him, and say unto him, Master, carest thou not that we perish? And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith? And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?” (Mark 4:35-41).

Today’s Morsel:  One of the things about tests is that most people start grading themselves right in the middle of them.  Some people get so worked up over tests, that they stress themselves out for fear of failure.  So, what is the purpose of tests?  Are they to kill us or to allow us to see what we’ve learned and to make us wiser?  We should never grade ourselves while we are having a test.  We should do the best that we can and see what the outcome is.  The disciples awakened Jesus in the middle of their test for fear of dying.  To which Jesus asked them where their faith was?  Why were they so fearful?  If the test causes you stress and fear of failing or even dying, that means you didn’t pay attention in class.

Sing:  I trust in God, wherever I may be, upon the land, on the raging seas.  For come what may, from day to day, my Heavenly Father, watches over, over me.
I trust in God, I know He cares for me, upon the land, or on the stormy seas.  Though billows roar, He keeps my soul>  My Heavenly Father, watches over, over me.

Thought For Today:  It is only a test.  

Monday, April 23, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 23

“And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4).

Today’s Morsel:  “With a timid voice and idolizing eyes, the little boy greeted his father as he returned from work, "Daddy, how much do you make an hour."  Greatly surprised, but giving his boy a glaring look, the father said: "Look, sonny, not even your mother knows that. Don't bother me now, I'm tired."  "But Daddy, just tell me please! How much do you make an hour?", the boy insisted.  Finally giving up,  the father replied: "Twenty dollars per hour."  "Okay, Daddy.  Could you loan me ten dollars?", the boy asked.  Showing his resentment and positively disturbed, the father yelled, "So that was the reason you asked how much I earn? Go to sleep and don't bother me anymore!"  Later, after it was dark and the father was meditating on what he said and feeling guilty, he thought maybe his son wanted to buy something very special.  Finally, trying to ease his mind, the father went to his son's room. "Are you asleep, son?" asked the father. "No, Daddy. Why?" replied the boy, rubbing the sleep from his eyes.  "Here's the money you asked for earlier," the father said. "Thanks, Daddy!" rejoiced the son, while putting his hand under his pillow and removing some money. "Now I have enough! Now I have twenty dollars!" the boy said to his father, who was gazing at his son confused at what his son had just said.  "Daddy, could you sell me one hour of your time?”  By P.D. Buford.

Sing:  To be like Jesus, to be like Jesus, on earth I long to be like Him.  All through life’s journey, from earth to glory, I only ask to be like Him. 

Thought For Today:  Time, use it wisely.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 21

“Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed? For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:1-5)

Today’s Morsel:  I think one of the toughest things for some people to deal with is their wounds.  Some wounds are caused by ourselves while others may be caused by someone else.  Physical and verbal abuse can leave lasting wounds in a person and many people do not know how to deal with them.  When Jesus told the story of the good Samaritan, he said, “A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead” (Luke 10:30).  Notice, this man's wounds were caused by someone else.  Luckily for him, someone came by to help him.  You may not realize it, but as Mordecai told Esther, who knows whether you have been brought to the kingdom for such a time as this (Esther 4:14).  One of the gifts of the Spirit is the gift of healings, which I believe are physical, emotional, and spiritual.  Do you know how to deal with and to help others with their wounds?  You see, you were not just saved for you, you were saved to assist and help others recover as well.  Jesus said that you shall lay hands on the sick and they shall recover.  Use the Holy Ghost that is in you to help others heal.  

Sing: He was wounded, for our transgression, He was bruised for our iniquities.  Surely, He bore all our sorrows.  And by His stripes, we are healed.

Thought For Today:  Be the change!

Friday, April 20, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 20

“Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was. Then after that saith he to his disciples, Let us go into Judaea again. His disciples say unto him, Master, the Jews of late sought to stone thee; and goest thou thither again? Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world. But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him” (John 11:5-10).

Today’s Morsel:  Sometimes in our walk with God, we enter what I call danger zones.  It may be a place that you’ve been threatened before.  It may be a city that you desire to start a church, but you were rejected.  It may be in a home where someone wants a bible study, but there are drug dealers in the area.  These danger zones can sometimes try to inflict fear in us.  But we must remember that if it is of God, nothing will be able to separate us.  They had threatened to stone Jesus at Bethany before.  And so, when He told His disciples that He was going there again, they were concerned for His safety because they knew this was a danger zone.  Even the apostle Paul having been stoned and left for dead at Lystra, he re-enters that danger zone to preach again.  And scripture says, “And when they had preached the gospel to that city, and had taught many, they returned again to Lystra, and to Iconium, and Antioch, Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God” (Acts 14:21-22).  Always remember, greater His He that is in you than he that is in the world.

Sing:  Greater is He that is in me.  Greater is He that is in me.  Greater is He that is in me, than he that is in the world.

Thought For Today:  Don’t be afraid of your danger zone.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 19

“I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all” (Ecclesiastes 9:11).

Today’s Morsel:  They say that the fruit that ripens the fastest, also rots the fastest.  Fruit which is seen outward on trees seems to rot faster than fruit which grows underground.  Therefore, I believe that the fruit of the Spirit must first be developed inside of us.  If we do not have any roots when the trials and tests come, we will rot away (see Luke 8).  Jesus told the religious leaders, “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity” (Matthew 23:27-28).   Jesus said we must “either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit” (Matthew 12:33).  If your fruit is going to remain then it must first be developed within.

Sing: Will you decide now to follow Jesus?  Will you decide now to follow Jesus?  Will you decide now to follow Jesus, no turning back, no turning back.

Thought For Today:  The fruit that ripens the fastest also rots the fastest.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 18

“And I charged Baruch before them, saying, Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Take these evidences, this evidence of the purchase, both which is sealed, and this evidence which is open; and put them in an earthen vessel, that they may continue many days. For thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Houses and fields and vineyards shall be possessed again in this land. Now when I had delivered the evidence of the purchase unto Baruch the son of Neriah, I prayed unto the LORD, saying, Ah Lord GOD! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee: Thou shewest lovingkindness unto thousands, and recompensest the iniquity of the fathers into the bosom of their children after them: the Great, the Mighty God, the LORD of hosts, is his name, Great in counsel, and mighty in work: for thine eyes are open upon all the ways of the sons of men: to give every one according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings” (Jeremiah 32:13-19).

Today’s Morsel:  Someone asked the question, “If you were on trial for being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?”  If we can determine the false prophets by their fruit, shouldn’t we also be able to determine a true Christian by theirs?  The Lord told Jeremiah to buy his uncle's son’s property, as He would return His people to the land again.  And so, he brought it and he told Baruch; “Take these evidences, this evidence of the purchase, both which is sealed, and this evidence which is open; and put them in an earthen vessel, that they may continue many days.”  Notice, the evidence was both sealed and opened and he placed it into an earthen vessel.  Paul said, “But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us” (2 Corinthians 4:7).   Jesus purchased us with His blood.  Therefore, we must have the evidence of His purchase within and without.  Acts 10:44-48 says, “While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word. And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost. For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter, Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we? And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord.”  Do you have the Holy Ghost?   It’s the evidence that we must have within and without to show that we are His.

Sing:  Our Lord God, thou hast made the heavens and the earth, by Thy great power.  Our Lord God, thou hast made the heavens and the earth by Thine outstretched arm.  Nothing is too difficult for Thee, nothing is too difficult for Thee; Great and Mighty God, great in counsel, mighty indeed, nothing, nothing, absolutely nothing, nothing is too difficult for Thee.

Thought For Today:  Do you have the evidence? (Parker)

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 17

"And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches” (Revelation 3:14-22).

Today’s Morsel:  The city of Laodicea was located on the ancient highway leading up from Ephesus going on to Syria.  The city was founded about 250B.C. by Antiochus II, who named it after his wife, Laodice, and populated it with Syrians and Jews whom he had transplanted from Babylonia.  It was situated on an almost square plateau a hundred feet above the valley and was surrounded by extensive fertile fields and good grazing grounds.  It soon became famous for its beauty and its wealth, derived largely from sheep, whose glossy black wool was woven into garments and carpets.  The city was also a center for banking and other financial operations, conducted for the most part by a prominent and wealthy Jewish circle. We can see why that church would have easily been drawn into the attitude of trusting in their wealth and stating that they have need of nothing.  Paul told the church at Colossi, “Salute the brethren which are in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the church which is in his house. And when this epistle is read among you, cause that it be read also in the church of the Laodiceans; and that ye likewise read the epistle from Laodicea” (Colossians 4:15-16).  You see, Colossi was only about six miles from Laodicea, and it would be easy for this church to share his concerns with them.  We must never get to a point that we think that we do not have need of anything because of our wealth and status in life.  As Paul told Timothy, “For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out” (1 Timothy 6:7).  Our daily need for Christ is always great.  

Sing:  For above all else, I must be saved.  For above all else I must be saved.  Lord whatever you have to do to me, don’t let me be lost for eternity.  For above all else I must be saved.

Thought For Today:  Be careful. Riches can be here today and gone tomorrow.  

Monday, April 16, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 16

“Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever” (1 John 2:15-17).

Today’s Morsel:  If someone were to ask you to define the world, what would be your reply?  I think that once we understand Truth, we can determine what the world really is.  We live in this world, it is not our permanent home yet not everything in it is bad for us.  We must have the wisdom and the knowledge to determine what is good and what is evil, we must know the difference.  We know that God created the heavens and the earth and that everything that He made was good.  John tells us to love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. The reason being is that if we love something, that’s where our heart will be, and it will be easy for that thing to draw our heart away from God and cause us to want to stay here; and we know that's not what God desires.  John lists three things that are associated with this world that we must avoid.  Those three things are lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes, and the pride of life.  I believe that these three things are associated with this world and will destroy your walk with God.  They will turn your heart from Him.  Therefore, they must be avoided if we are truly born-again believers.  Do you know the difference?

Sing: This world is not my home, I’m just a passing through.  My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue.  The angels beckon me from heaven’s open door, and I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.
O’ Lord you know I have no friend like You, if heaven’s not my home then Lord what will I do.  The angels beckon me from heaven’s open door, and I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.

Thought For Today:  Don’t put stock in this place (Parker).

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 14

“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know. Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way? Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:1-6).

Today’s Morsel:  As I sit and read magazines and the daily paper, I'm saddened by the number of young people who are filled with troubled lives.  Many of the stories that I read offer no hope for these people or the reader that is reading them that may be seeking help for themselves.  They are writing to sell these periodicals, but they offer no hope or no help.  Jesus said, “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me” (John 14:1).  Jesus is still the answer and hope for the world today, even though many are afraid to say so.  Until we get Jesus back in His rightful place, in our lives and homes, many more are going to have troubled hearts and minds.  For without me you can do nothing, Jesus said (John 15:5).  But as Isaiah encourages us, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting strength” (Isaiah 26:3-4).  A new life starts with a new reason.  And Jesus is that reason.

Sing:  Something beautiful, something good; All my confusion Jesus understood.  All I had to offer Him was brokenness and strife, but He made something beautiful out of my life.

Thought For Today:  A new life starts with a new reason.  Jesus

Friday, April 13, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 13

“Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time. For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me” (1 Corinthians 15:1-10).

Today’s Morsel:  I believe that the most important thing in any person’s life is when they have a clear understanding of the gospel and how it is applied to their life.  I believe that the reason so many people are having troubles in their lives and homes is that the gospel is missing.  Jesus said, “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me” (Revelation 3:20).  If we never allow Him to come in, we will never understand His love for us and His desire to help us.  First, we must understand that the Gospel is Jesus Christ Himself.  It is His death, His burial, and His resurrection.  And this is how His life becomes our life: “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin. Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God. Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:3-11).  If you want to see a change in your life obey Acts 2:38.  The gospel is not only the good news, it’s the best news.

Sing:  I’ve got the Holy Ghost, down in my soul, just like the Bible said; I’ve got the Holy Ghost, down in my soul, just like the Bible said.  Well I’ve been to the water and I’ve been baptized in Jesus Name, my soul got happy and I’m so satisfied; I  wouldn’t take nothing for my journey now, just like the Bible, just like the Bible, just like the Bible said.

Thought For Today:  The Gospel is not only the good news, it’s the best news.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 12

“A talebearer revealeth secrets: but he that is of a faithful spirit concealeth the matter” (Proverbs 11:13).

Today’s Morsel:  In today’s world, it seems that the intelligence community is having lots of trouble retaining secrets.  Secrets are posted on social media and on the airwaves quicker than one would have ever expected. Hackers are hacking personal accounts and people's personal data.  Companies are losing personal information of others because of a few talebearers.  And these talebearers fail to realize that they reap what they sow.  In today’s world, you need to know what you are telling, why you are telling, and to whom you are telling it to, as loose lips sink ships.  And the ship that sinks just might be the one you are sailing on.  Get in the habit of praising Jesus and praying often and you will be of a faithful spirit and able to bridle your tongue.   Remember, there is a time to speak and a time to keep silent (Ecclesiastes 3:7).

Sing: Praise Him, Praise Him, Praise Him in the morning, Praise Him in the noontime.  Praise Him, Praise Him, Praise Him when the Sun goes down.
Thought For Today:  Hush, somebody might be listening!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 11

“Oh that I knew where I might find him! that I might come even to his seat! I would order my cause before him, and fill my mouth with arguments. I would know the words which he would answer me, and understand what he would say unto me. Will he plead against me with his great power? No; but he would put strength in me. There the righteous might dispute with him; so should I be delivered for ever from my judge. Behold, I go forward, but he is not there; and backward, but I cannot perceive him: On the left hand, where he doth work, but I cannot behold him: he hideth himself on the right hand, that I cannot see him: But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold. My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined. Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food” (Job 23:3-12).

Today’s Morsel:  When I was a kid, I liked to play hide-and-seek.  It was lots of fun.  Sometimes, if we had a very good hiding place, we could see the person that was looking for us and when we had an opportunity, we could run to the home-base and be safe.  Job said that he was looking for God, but he couldn’t find him. He said even though he couldn’t find God, God knew where he was and the way that he goes.  I think in some way, this is what the scripture points out to us, “Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy; To deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine” (Psalms 33:18-19); For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him...” (2 Chronicles 16:9).  Don’t ever think that you can hide from God.   He knows your every move.  We can also take great comfort that He knows exactly where we are and carefully watches over us.    

Sing:  Why should I feel discouraged, and why should the shadow come, and why should my heart be lonely, and long for heaven and home. When Jesus is my portion, a constant friend is he, His eye is on the sparrow and I know he watches over me.
 Chorus: I sing because I’m happy. I sing because I’m free.  His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches over me.

Thought For Today:  There’s an all-seeing eye watching you.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 10

“There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band, A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God alway. He saw in a vision evidently about the ninth hour of the day an angel of God coming in to him, and saying unto him, Cornelius. And when he looked on him, he was afraid, and said, What is it, Lord? And he said unto him, Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God. And now send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose surname is Peter: He lodgeth with one Simon a tanner, whose house is by the sea side: he shall tell thee what thou oughtest to do” (Acts 10:1-6).

Today’s Morsel:  I have heard many people say that all you must do be saved is just believe in Jesus.  Salvation is more than just believing.  The Bible tells us, in James 2:19, that the devil believes, and he trembles.  And we know that he’s not saved nor can he be saved.  Even Nicodemus was a believer in Jesus (See John 3:3-5); and Jesus told him that he must be born again of the water and the Spirit to enter the Kingdom of God, so simply believing was not enough.  According to Luke’s writings, Cornelius was a stronger believer in Christ.  He states, “There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band, A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God alway.” With this type of resume, one would think he would be saved.  But the angel told him to send for Peter and he would tell him what he ought to do.  Cornelius did not delay but sent for him.  Cornelius needed to be born again the same as Jesus told Nicodemus in John3:3-5 of the water and the Spirit, as we see in Acts chapter 10, verses 44-48, after Peter told Him what He ought to do. Salvation is more than just believing. On the day of Pentecost, they asked Peter and the other apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do? Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation. Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers” (Acts 2:37-42).  Don’t settle for the easy believism.  You must be born-again of the water and the Spirit.  He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.  (Mark 16:16)

Sing:  I know I’m saved, and I’m so glad about it, I found the joy my spirit craves.  It is so real that I could never doubt it, O’ praise the Lord I know I’m saved.

Thought For Today:  Salvation is more than just believing.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 9

Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments; As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the blessing, even life for evermore” (Psalms 133:1-3).

Today’s Morsel:  We sometimes hear on the news of certain states that want to break away from these United States.  One of Satan’s goals is to break unity.  Not only in a nation, but also in the home and church.  He knows that scripture says that a house divided against itself cannot stand.  If he can create disunity among church members and families, he will have no problem fulfilling his goal. Writing to the church at Ephesus, Paul states, “I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, with all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all” (Ephesians 4:1-6).  You see the body of Christ must not be divided.  Notice what Paul says, there is one body, one spirit, one hope, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God.  He’s showing that God is one.  And if we say that we are in His body, then we must do everything we can to keep the unity of His body, as it is good and pleasant.

Sing:  Bind us together, Lord, bind us together with cords that cannot be broken.  Bind us together, Lord, bind us together Lord, bind us together with love.

Thought For Today:  Unity requires U-N-I for it to happen (Parker).

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 7

Blessed is every one that feareth the LORD; that walketh in his ways” (Psalms 128:1).

Today’s Morsel:  To fear the Lord is to reverence Him. It is to acknowledge Him as our Lord.  The psalmist said, “Blessed is everyone that feareth the LORD; that walketh in his ways.”  Are you blessed?  If not, why not?  The quickest way to be blessed is to reverence God.  As David again says, “O fear the LORD, ye his saints: for there is no want to them that fear him” (Psalms 34:9).  When we fear God, so much goodness is laid up for us.  The heart of God is towards us, the secret of who He is is with us.  His eye is upon us, and the sun of righteousness rises on us, and both grace and glory are given to us as well as eternal life which is to come.  Are you blessed?  Fear of God always proceeds the blessings of God.

Sing:  I am blessed, I am blessed, every day that I live I am blessed.  When I wake up in the morning, till I lay my head to rest, I am blessed, I am blessed.

Thought For Today:  Fear of God always proceeds the blessings of God.

Friday, April 6, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 6

“Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad” 
(2 Corinthians 5:9-10).

Today’s morsel:  I remember the first time I had to appear before a magistrate for speeding on a military base.  The military police had clocked me going 30 miles per hour in a 15 mile per hour speed zone in a military housing area on base.  As I sat listening to the judge hand out fines and charges for infractions done on base (which many of them I felt were steep for the infraction), I could only sit and imagine what mine would be.  And so, when it was my turn to stand before him, I didn’t try to find an excuse for my speeding.  When he asked me how I pled, I told him I was guilty.  He asked me if I knew the danger of my actions?  And I told him, yes sir.  And so, he charged me $50 and told me to not let it happen again.  I felt relieved and remorse at the same time.  I was remorseful because I knew that I could have hit someone’s child by speeding, and I was thankful and relieved that I did not go to jail.  Paul said that we all must appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. What will be your judgment?  Will He say, “Well done thy good and faithful servant, or bind him and cast him into everlasting darkness?”  What you do now determines your judgment then.  

Sing:  If when you give, the best of your service, telling the world that the Savior has come; be not dismayed, if friends don’t believe you, He’ll understand and say, “Well done.”

Thought For Today:  Remember it will be the word that judges us.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 5

“For wrath killeth the foolish man, and envy slayeth the silly one” (Job 5:2).

Today’s Morsel:  I keep shaking my head trying to find out why there are so many educated fools.  So many seem to be angry about everything.  They are angry with the president.  Angry with media.  Angry because their parking spot is taken.  Angry because parents ground them.  Angry because they didn’t get a good grade.  Angry because someone rejected what they said.  Angry because they didn’t get their way.  Angry because they didn’t make the team.  This is all vanity of vanity, and foolishness of foolishness.  They fail to heed the songwriter's advice when he wrote, “You can’t always get what you want.”  Solomon said that anger killeth the foolish man. He stated, “Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools” (Ecclesiastes 7:9). And his father David said, “The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God…” (Psalms 14:1).  I think that it’s time that schools and churches get back to the basic teaching of character.

Sing: Falling in love with Jesus, falling in love with Jesus, falling in love with Jesus, is the best things I've ever, ever done.

Thought For Today:  Don’t let anger destroy you.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 4

“Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men. Avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away” 
(Proverbs 4:14-15).

Today’s Morsel:  I’m afraid that so many are not being taught the ways of wickedness for fear.  Children are being left to decide for themselves.  Satan has painted a picture of good as being evil and evil as being good.  So many are entering into the path of wickedness because they want to be people pleasers instead of God pleasers.  They are overthrowing the righteous for the ways of the wicked.  They are siding with the wicked man over the righteous man.  They are calling for the removal of righteous ways for the ways of the wicked.  How can we determine the path of the wicked?  We must know the word of God.  David said, “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my pathway (Psalms 119:105).  We need to be able to see where we are going.  The apostle Paul asked the church at Corinth, “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any” (1 Corinthians 6:9-12).  Once we put our feet in path of the wicked, there is no telling when we will fall into a trap or snare.  Jesus has brought us out of the wicked way, and we must continue to stay clear.

Sing:  He brought me out of the miry clay, He set my feet on a Rock to stay.  He put a song in my soul today, a song of praise hallelujah.

Thought For Today:  Know what path you trod.

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Morning Manna by Rufus Parker - 2018 April 3

“Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding. For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold. She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her. Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her” (Proverbs 3:13-18).

Today’s Morsel:  Often, when my wife asks me to help her with storing things or getting boxes out for her to decorate for certain seasons of the year, I will come across items that I had forgotten that we had. Sometimes I find items that I had misplaced or forgotten where I had placed them.  A smile usually comes across my face when I reminisce about them.  Solomon said, "Happy is the man that findeth wisdom."  It seems today that so many have lost this precious trait of character, as we see by the many despondent or depressed faces.  Have you lost your wisdom? She dwells with prudence.  If you’ve lost her, why not seek for her, because who so findeth wisdom findeth life, and shall obtain favor of the Lord.

Sing: Deeper, deeper in the love of Jesus daily let me go; higher, higher in the school of wisdom, more of grace to know.
O’ deeper yet I pray, and higher every day; and wiser, blessed Lord, in Thy precious holy word.

Thought For Today:  Happy is the man that finds wisdom and the man that gets understanding.