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'Choosing to 'Choose Life''

St. Teresa of Jesus

Woe to you...

- Luke 11:47

The Pharisees are at it again--saying one thing, doing another! You can almost see Jesus shake his head as he says, "Woe to you!" And with good reason. As scholars of the Law, they should be well acquainted with God's edict, "I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. Choose life, then, that you and your descendants may live..." (Deuteronomy 30:19).

And yet, can we not also recall times we have not made a good choice and paid the consequences? As a parent, encouraging the practice of making good choices is one of the most valuable lessons we can impart to our children. While it may be difficult to let a child learn from their mistakes, by doing so, they will be less likely in the future to encounter a "woe is me," moment, a time when a decision could--or could not--be life-giving.

Let us then learn--and teach--to "choose life."

- Judy Schueneman
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Praying for your friends this evening, Ken.
Bill L | Posted on: 2020-10-16 00:17:40
I think this is important for me to share with you as I shared with our BSF students and discussed with them yesterday:

Discovery (to dig deeper)
* What is Sin? What is Confession? What is Repentance?
* What evidence of sin’s destruction do you see in the world today?
* How do you see God’s mercy in these situations?
* How could you be part of God’s mercy and care?

What is Sin?
* Rebellion/offense against God
* A thought, word or action against the law of God
* It is doing something that God said not to do
* It is not doing what God said to do

What is Confession?
* Admitting you are wrong without blaming others
* Agreeing with God that what you did was sin
* Confession of sin is the admission of what we did and the agreement with God that our actions or words were wrong.

What is Repentance?
* Changing your attitude toward someone or something
* The act of turning from sin and turning to God
* Repentance is a change of mind that results in a change of action
* To repent is to rely on God’s power to help us love Him more than we lover our sins

Test your Confession and Repentance skills
* Your friend says something mean about another friend. You participate in the conversation. What does confession look like? What does repentance look like?
* You pinch your sibling when they started to tell your parents something you didn’t want them to know. What does confession look like? What does repentance look like?
* You were frustrated with school and decided to play a video game instead of doing your homework. Your parents discover you and… What does confession look like? What does repentance look like?
Salina | Posted on: 2020-10-15 16:33:57
Join me in the next 3 weeks to study Noah (Genesis 5-11:9) at BSF. Come to know this One True God more and be encouraged :-)

Salina | Posted on: 2020-10-15 16:19:33
Sharing with you my BSF lesson with the students this week...

10/14/20 BSF Student Bible Lesson #4 Genesis 4:1-26

God’s Attribute: Righteous
Aim: To learn that sin spreads destruction but God offers mercy!

Dear Jesus, I am thankful for these students who take time to study Your Word and to know You personally! Thank You for BSF providing a disciplined structure to study Your Word and a safe place to ask questions. I learn this week that You are righteous and yet when we sin You offer us mercy! Help us to learn from the mistakes Cain and his descendants have made, so we don’t have to make the same mistakes. In Jesus’ Name we pray, Amen!

• By now, you have heard of COVIN-19, the Coronavirus, right? And you probably know how destructive the Coronavirus is?
• It has caused school, businesses, restaurants and everything else to close! Why? Because we want to stop the spread of the Coronavirus destruction!
• Well, in the same way: Sin spreads destruction, but God offers mercy in the midst of His righteousness.
• In Genesis 4, we learn how sin continues to spread to Adam and Eve’s children and all the people that follow including you and me. Let’s open our Bible to Genesis 4!

A. Cain’s Temptation (Genesis 4:1-7)
• God gave Adam and Eve two sons, Cain and Abel! Cain became a farmer and Abel a shepherd.
• They brought offerings to God. God looked with favor on Abel’s offering but not Cain’s! Why?
• We know God is righteous, that means God is right in all He does. All of God’s Words, actions and plans are right!
• We don’t know exactly why God favored Abel’s offering but not Cain, but we can gather some information from His Word on their offerings...
• In verse 3, Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil...where as Abel brought the FAT PORTION from some of the firstborn of his flock in verse 4. You see...‘Fat portion’ is the best part of the animal that Abel offered!
• Well, just like last week with Adam and Eve’s sin, God asked Cain questions one after another! He asked Cain, “Why are you angry?” (What’s wrong with your face? Ok, God didn’t really say that) He said, “Why is your face downcast?”
• In the midst of God’s righteousness and Cain’s sin, He offered Cain mercy to repent! He said to Cain, “If you do what is right, will you not be accepted?”
• Cain could have done what is right, but he chose not to listen to God.

First Principle Truth: Sin hurts us and everyone around us!
• Cain was jealous over Abel’s offering.
• God was so good to warn Cain about the sin in his heart.
• Sin hurts us and everyone around us!
• Think about these questions I am asking you, “Are you mad about something or someone? Is there sin knocking at your door?”

B. Cain’s Sin and Curse (Genesis 4:8-12)
• Cain chose to ignore God’s warning and disobey Him. He chose to sin!
• He killed his brother, Abel!
• Once again, God asked Cain questions, to give him a chance to confess and repent.
• But Cain lied and showed his disrespect for God saying, “I don’t know...Am I my brother’s keeper?”
• God gave Cain yet another chance to confess by asking him, “What have you done?”
• God is righteous...He punished Cain for killing Abel. Cain would no longer be a farmer, but a wanderer around the earth.

Second Principle Truth: Sin destroys!
• Sin brought destruction to Cain’s life and destroyed his relationship with God and his family!
• Let me ask you these questions again, “Are you mad about something or someone? Is there sin knocking at your door?”
• Don’t hold a grudge in your heart! Ask God for help!
• Confess and repent of your feelings, thoughts and actions.
• 1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, He (God) is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

C. Sin’s Spread and God’s Mercy (Genesis 4:13-26)
• When Cain heard the destruction that his sin brought to his life, did he confess and repent? Nope, he didn’t...
• He actually complained about how severe the punishment was.
• God was mercifulto Cain and He is merciful to us today!
• God protected Cain from being killed by giving him a mark, a mark of mercy, God’s mercy!
• In spite of God’s mercy, Cain went his own way – away from God!
• Cain spread his rebellious attitude and actions to generations in his family tree.
• God created marriage for one man and one woman. But one of Cain’s descendants, Lamech married two women and boasted about killing a man!
• Cain’s descendants seemed to be doing well as shepherds, musicians and metal workers. But there is no mention of God anywhere...
• Talk about God offers mercy...God granted Eve another son, Seth, in place of Abel! Eve praised God for His grace. Seth and his descendants began to call on the Name of the Lord!

Third Principle Truth: Sin spreads destruction!
• Adam’s disobedience and Cain’s rebellious attitude and actions spread to their children and their childrenand their children.
• So...”Are you mad about something or someone? Is there sin knocking at your door?” • You know what to do, right? Ask God to show you how to change your mind, heart and life, so you can rule over temptations and sins. They are not getting into the door. To that I say, Amen!

Conclusion – Sin hurts us and others. Sin destroys! And just like COVIN-19, sin spreads destruction but God offers grace and mercyin the midst of it! Thanks be to God who sent Jesus to rescue and save all who turn from sin and trust in Him. He also sent His Holy Spirit to help us to be able to say ‘no’ to sin. Everyone sins. But we do not have to keep sinning. Through Jesus, we can repent and be saved!
Salina | Posted on: 2020-10-15 12:52:49
As we make many choices in our daily lives, stopping and asking God to guide you can alleviate many of those consequences we have to pay.

I pray for all to make wise choices today and experience the joy and love as the consequence.

Blessings and continued prayers to all!
Sandy | Posted on: 2020-10-15 12:39:01
Amen Sandy!
Tillie | Posted on:: 2020-10-15 19:08:28
Holly | Posted on: 2020-10-15 10:35:22
freeter | Posted on: 2020-10-15 10:27:30
Thanks Judy for today's devotion. Lord be gracious to us and free us from all the harm and injury we are bound to suffer in this earthly life. Prayer for all living faith members.
Sham Peter Narine | Posted on: 2020-10-15 10:22:27
DearJesus, many came before me and there will be many after me, give us the chance to know you one on one in prayer.

You chose us to do your works, come and give us the strength not to ever let you down.

Keep fear and anxiety away from this life, so that we can Continue to do your necessary works here on earth.

Please hear the many prayers of our Living Faith Family today, and bring us the comfort you know we need, desperately today.

We pray, Amen.

Tim | Posted on: 2020-10-15 10:10:20
Lia | Posted on:: 2020-10-15 10:52:04
Amen. Thank you Holy Father for this beautiful day and for this Gospel today. Thank you Lord for my faith, my life and for my family. Thank you Holy Father, most of all, for your great sacrifice and for the opportunity of forgiveness and reconciliation. Please Lord have mercy. Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, have mercy on me, a sinner. Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ, now and forever. Amen.
A sinner | Posted on: 2020-10-15 09:56:42
Carol | Posted on: 2020-10-15 09:40:24
Yes..God lets us learn by our mistakes and He is always there as a loving Father calling us back to the straight and narrow of His Perfect Will. Thank You Father..I love You!
JimR | Posted on: 2020-10-15 09:21:58
Good morning living faith family I am going to keep you in my thoughts and prayers when I attend Mass this morning.
Please pray for my friends Maryann and Linda as they are going through some rough times.

Kjc | Posted on:: 2020-10-15 10:06:13
Great devotional, amen to that TimR. May we all learn from our experiences good or bad and continue growing as we journey the narrow road. Praying for your friends Ken.
Patrick | Posted on:: 2020-10-15 10:44:40
JimR, should have worn my glasses>
Patrick | Posted on:: 2020-10-15 11:08:49
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