1. The Western New York Dairy/Ag Festival Weekend starts today in Springville, New York. The theme for the event is “200 Years of Farming in the Town of Concord.” While FCFI is not officially represented our prayer is that the farming community and its products are promoted and that Jesus Christ is exalted in all that happens at this well attended festival less than an hour’s drive from Buffalo, New York.
  2. “Hey, my friend, can you spare a buck… or two or three or, maybe, could you spare a week?” You see, FCFI is still very much involved in helping folks “get back on their feet” after severe weather damages in both the Henryville, Indiana and Schoharie Valley, New York areas and we need all the help we can get. Prince of Peace, we pray today for the folks and the businesses that have endured serious damages and also for the men and women who are giving of their time and treasure to give needed aid and we thank you for being the rock that we can all depend on.
  3. Big Red Juicy Strawberries! Strawberries are one of my favorite foods and today they are having a Strawberry Festival in Madison, Connecticut. Bill Brown and other FCF workers are there to present another “treat,” a free walking stick with the five colored beads that tell the story of Jesus Christ and His offer of grace and forgiveness. Messiah, use the FCF team in a mighty way to renew faltering commitments and bring new life to the un-churched.
  4. “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts, boast in this: that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord… ” Jeremiah 9:23,24. Do you understand and know the Lord? I am afraid that most of us can do little boasting. Teacher, our knowledge and understanding of you is limited. Open our eyes, improve our vision of who you are and who we are in you.
  5. Our friend, Joe, is struggling with prostate cancer and requests prayer and other, unspecified needs for prayer have been requested. Jehovah Rapha, our healer, sickness, injury, and age related ailments plague all of us at one time or another. We ask you to address first the spiritual needs of the afflicted and those close to them. Minister to the physical needs as only you can and we praise you for being there for us no matter what problems we may face.
  6. We often pray with our mates but, if you are like me, you often neglect to pray for your mates. Head of the Church, I thank you for my mate. I ask you to bless her (him) in all the she (he) does, wherever she (he) goes and whomever she (he) is with. Thank you for the family we share, the provis-ions you supply us with, and the friends and associates that enrich our lives. I also pray for your mate, the universal church, that is your lips, hands, and feet. Bless and use your church to expand and glorify your kingdom, we pray in Jesus name.
  7. Bill and Kathy Brown were the first area leaders for FCFI and have served in that capacity for thirteen years. Bill, a former dairyman, has set the standard for area leaders and is largely responsible for FCF’s expansion into Canada as well as providing guidance to the other area leaders. Jehovah Rohi, the Lord Our Shepherd, we thank you for Bill and Kathy and for all the work that they do in your name.
  8. Our Lord provides us with so many things that we take completely for granted. That list could be several pages long but the one I want to emphasize today is time. We all have time to work, play, rest, eat, and all the other functions of daily living including wasting time itself, a most precious gift. Alpha and Omega, thank you for giving us the gift of time. Inspire us to use our time wisely, to draw close to you, to minister to others, and to support and encourage all of those around us.
  9. The two day Meredith Dairy Festival begins today in Meredale, New York. Bill Brown is at it again, setting up a tent, and contacting workers to “market” the “walking stick” message of hope, grace, and deliverance from Satan’s grip. Thank you, Redeemer, for yet another opportunity to share your priceless message of salvation to all who might inquire. Bless this outreach and all the people who are both “givers” and “receivers”.
  10. Have you ever wondered why most of us get up in the morning long after the sun is up (especially in the summer months) but stay up long after the sun “sets” in the evening? It seems that many of our “social” activities happen after sundown. Could it be because “men loved darkness instead of the light because their deeds were evil” (John 3:19)? Bright Morning Star, we are a flawed people who desperately need your guidance so that we can see the light and avoid all the pitfalls that darkness hides.
  11. The 19th Annual FCFI Conference will be held in Branson, Missouri from July 27 to 29, 2012. Troy Meeder, co-founder of the Crystal Peaks Youth Ranch, will be inspirational speaker. Sons of the Silver Dollar will provide special music and there will be several workshops as well as mission reports. There is no time like right now to sign up to attend this inspiring and fun filled conference. Call the FCFI office at 309 365 8710 for details and directions.
  12. I would like you to meet our FCF Board Vice President, Todd Brace. Todd and Ellen who have been married for thirty-five years live in East Canton, Ohio and have three children. Todd, a farm boy, is a graduate of Kent State University and is a Conservation Program Chief in the Farm Service Agency, a division of USDA. Immanuel, continue to bless Todd and Ellen as they serve you in their home community, in their church, and as they assume leadership in FCFI. Use their unique talents to inspire others and provide direction whenever and wherever it is needed
  13. Dennis Schlagel will be a long way away from home as he ministers at the New Zealand Field days in Hamilton, New Zealand from June 13 to 16, 2012. But the message Dennis will share is appropriate wherever it is spoken. Light of the World, precious souls are waiting for someone to explain
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    to them how Jesus can save them from eternal damnation. Give Dennis and his helpers all the tools they need to meet every need they encounter at this show and build a foundation in New Zealand for a vibrant arm of FCFI.

  14. The Old Testament is a history lesson in how Creation began, how God used people to build a society, and how He used one man in particular, Abraham, to establish a people chosen by God. Do you realize that all the trials and heartaches in the Old Testament happened for our benefit? It is a major part of God’s Word to us today. Paul tells us in 1Corinthians 3:10, “I have laid the foundation… but let each one take heed how he builds on it”. I Am, help us to take Paul’s advice to take how we build on the history, prophesy, and direction of the Old Testament.
  15. “Remember the Sabbath Day by keeping it Holy. Six days shall you labor and do all your work…” Exodus 20:8,9. I sometimes wonder if we violate this commandment by working only five days. Yet, it is far more important that we keep the seventh day Holy. Verse ten goes on to say, “The seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord, your God”. Everlasting Father, we don’t do a very good job of setting the Sabbath aside for you. Forgive us and guide us to honor you every day but especially on the seventh day.
  16. Exodus 20:17 tells us “you shall not covet .”. basically it means not to desire what belongs to someone else. And, I believe it is not limited to possessions. Things like job, fame, position or rank should be included along with personality, popularity, or a certain skill or talent. Wonderful Counselor, you have blessed me with certain possessions, talents, and abilities. You have also blessed others with their own special attributes. Help me to rejoice in the gifts of others at least as much as I rejoice in my own.
  17. Today many people around the world celebrate Father’s Day. Exodus 20:12 gives us the Fifth Commandment which is “Honor your father and mother”. My father worked hard, provided for his family, loved and respected his wife (my mother), cared deeply for his children, and tried to bring us all up to love, serve, and depend on our Lord. But, he wasn’t perfect and I thank God that I have a Heavenly Father who is perfect, who loves and cares for all fathers and their children. Praise God for this gift.
  18. “The Lord said to Gideon, the people who are with you are too many”, Judges 7:2. This was the case when Gideon prepared to face the Midianites. How can you have too many soldiers or too much money or too many of other resources? The answer is “when you put your trust in anything other than God.” King of Kings, we often become so confident in our own abilities or resources that we forget about you. We give you permission to correct that situation in me as well as in others.
  19. “What does the Lord require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God”, Micah 6:8. It is hard to believe that God does not require that we work hard, work smart, give generously, and praise often. But, there is a difference between require and desire. God can get along just fine without us, He is not for sale. Thank you, Savior, for saving us only by grace so that we cannot boast, but rather work out of gratitude for the greatest gift known to man.
  20. Recently our church added several new members. Most were relatively new to the church and had already become active in the life of the church through teaching Sunday School, serving with the worship team, or some other aspect of the church’s ministry. A few had attended the church for twenty or thirty years. Why did they wait so long? I don’t have an answer and the reason isn’t important anyway. Colossians 1:3 says, “We give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ praying always for you”. We pray for those who just started coming to church and for those who have been faithful in attendance for many years. Bless each one and draw them closer to you.
  21. “If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to myself that where I am there you may be also”, John 14:3. Hallelujah! Life can get pretty rough at times and I don’t know about you but I struggle with unwholesome thoughts and ideas sometimes. But, thank you, Jesus, you have prepared a place for me that is free from fear, pain, and suffering. And, that place, is where you will be too. I really like that idea.
  22. “Oh how I love your law. It is my meditation all the day”, Psalm 119:97. Can you say that you meditate on God’s Word all day? I am afraid that I cannot. But, when I do, I realize that another name for the Bible could be “God’s Book of Promises”. Here are just a few examples: “Whoever believes in Him shall not perish”, John 3:16; “In all things God works for the good of those who love Him”, Romans 8:28; “My God will meet all your needs according to the riches of His glory”, Philippians 4:19. Thank you, Living Word, for your “Book of Promises”.
  23. “But God said to him, You fool, this very night your life will be demanded from you. Then, who will get what you have prepared for your-self”, Luke 12:20. This is the harsh word Jesus had toward the rich man who had enjoyed a bountiful harvest and built bigger barns to hold it but failed to acknowledge God in all his doings. It reminds me of FCFI’s founding verse, “for what shall it profit a man to gain the world but lose his soul”, Mark 8:36. Bread of Life, thank you for the bountiful harvest that many of us enjoy. But don’t allow us to entertain the foolish idea that your hand was not involved in that bounty or that possessions are more important than our soul.
  24. “Honor the Lord with your wealth, with the first fruits of all your crops. Then your barns will be filled to overflowing and your vats will brim over with new wine”, Proverbs 3:9,10. This advice from Solomon still holds true today. Who doesn’t want “overflowing barns and full to the brim wine vats”? But, Lord, we tend to be greedy and also keep some of the “first fruits”. Forgive us our folly and redirect our hearts to honoring you.
  25. Have you ever heard of Shamgar? Probably not since only one verse in the Bible mentions his name. Judges 3:31 says, “After Ehud came Shamgar… who struck down 600 Philistines with an ox goad. He, too, saved Israel”. You don’t have to have a famous name or possess mighty weapons to accomplish much for the Lord. Faithful Witness, here we are with meager talents and modest weaponry but we are available to serve you in any way we can.
  26. “Be transformed by the renewing of your mind”, Romans 12:2b. Is there any hope for those of us called “senior citizens” to renew our minds? If I read this verse correctly, it is never too late. Rabboni I need to “renew my mind” continually. Place the people, lessons, and situations before me that I need so that I “do not conform to the pattern of this world”, (Romans 12:2a) but have a mind that is more Christ like.
  27. “Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also the interests of others”, Philippians 2:4. This could easily be the by-word for FCFI. It is dedicated to helping others devastated by calamity, taking the word and action of our Lord to places near and far, and telling others about Jesus so that they, too, can know the blessing of eternal life. Image of the Invisible God, let me not become “weary in well doing”. Keep our eyes on the needs of others and our ears tuned to the pleas of those less fortunate.
  28. The South Dakota AgXchange begins today in Pierre, South Dakota. I don’t know what kinds of things will be exchanged there but I do know that Eldon Babcock and his FCFI helpers are hoping to effect change in the folks who stop by their tent. Holy One, people hungry to receive Christ (even if they don’t know it yet) will be stopping by to get a “walking stick”. Use this opportunity to pour out your spirit on each one and draw them into your kingdom.
  29. The 28th Chapter of Deuteronomy gives a long list of blessings and curses. Each one of these lists begins with the big word IF and though there are fourteen verses of blessings IF we fully obey the Lord, and there are thirty verses of curses IF we don’t obey the Lord. Lion of Judah, I am afraid we don’t take the “if we don’t obey the Lord” curses very seriously. Only with your help can we accomplish these goals and only through Jesus can we expect to be forgiven for our many failures.
  30. “Be strong and courageous”. This command and one’s similar to it are found throughout the Bible. Three times in the Book of Joshua God gives this command to Joshua. Do you think Joshua might have been a little intimidated by the responsibility of taking over the leadership of the Hebrew nation after the death of Moses? God is giving us that same command today. He is telling us “be strong and courageous” because “if God is for us who can be against us”, Romans 8:31. Thank you, Lord of Lords, for that wonderful command and promise.