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The Cracked Acorn

The Cracked Acorn: Anchor

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It has come that time again to think of hooking up to the boat trailer and going after “the one that got away”. My uncle and I made many of these trips to the rivers and lakes of Kentucky. We had a checklist of things we needed: fishing tackle and lures, life vests, oars, fuel for the motor, food, and cold drinks. We always made certain that we had that one most important item – the anchor attached to a cement block with a good length of rope, without the anchor we would not be able to remain in a promising fishing spot or stay close to the shore.

All ships and boats require an anchor. In a great storm, the anchor was needed as drag to slow the ship and keep away from the rocky shores. The world’s largest cruise ship, the Queen Mary 2, because of its size cannot navigate the Panama Canal. The ship has three anchors,each at 23 tons. The three are each attached to a chain that is 1/2 mile long. Anchors and chains weight 273 tons.

Anchor-anything that provides security and stability, and makes firm and provides support. The Scriptures stress the need for an anchor. In Hebrews 6:18c-19,“We who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to seize the hope set before us.(19) We have this as sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner shrine behind the curtain.”

The keys words are “hope” and “anchor”. These words could be interchanged and still provide the same encouragement, as in II Corinthians 3:12,”Since we have such a hope(anchor), we are very bold,” and Ephesians 2:12,”Remember you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope(anchor) and without God in the world”, finally I Peter 1:21, “Through him you have confidence in God, raised from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope(anchor) are in God.”


Will your anchor hold in the storms of life, When the clouds unfold their wings of strife? When the strong tides lift, And the cables strain, Will your anchor drift or firm remain?

WE HAVE AN ANCHOR THAT KEEPS THE SOUL STEADFAST AND SURE WHILE THE BILLOWS ROLL, FASTENED TO THE ROCK WHICH CANNOT MOVE, GROUNDED FIRM AND DEEP IN THE SAVIOR’S LOVE. – (Faith & Praise #467)

It was the schooner Hesperus That sailed the wintry seas,
And the skipper had taken his little daughter, To bear him company.

The up and spake an old sailor, Had sailed to the Spanish Main,
“I pray thee,put into yonder port, For I fear a hurricane.

Down came the storm and smote amain The vessel in its strength;
She shuddered and paused,like a frighted steed,Then leaped her cable’s length

The skipper wrapped his daughter in his seaman’s coat Against the stinging blast;
He cut a rope from a broken spar,And bound her to the mast.

Then the maiden clasped her hands and prayed That saved she might be;
And she thought of Christ,who stilled the wave On the lake of Galilee.

At daybreak.on the bleak sea-beach,A fisherman stood aghast,
To see the form of a maiden fair,Lashed to a drifting mast.

-THE WRECK OF THE HESPERUS by Henry w. Longfellow,1840)

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The Cracked Acorn: Ark of the Covenant

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“The question of whatever happened to the ark of the covenant, an ornate box containing the laws handed down to Moses on Mount Sinai, has been a source of intense speculation for over two millenniums. The ark had a pre-eminent role in the Bible from its creation until the time it was placed in the Temple’s holy of holies during the days of David and Solomon. But sometime between 970 B.C. and 586 B.C., the ark disappeared, and no one knows what became of it. Does it still exist? Or was it destroyed thousands of years ago?” (From Eden to Exile by Eric H. Clines)

If you, like myself, believe that the Bible is the spoken, inspired literal word of God, you know that without a doubt that the ark of the covenant did exist. It was constructed of acacia wood, a little over 4 feet long and 2 ½ feet high, and 2 ½ feet in width, was covered over with hammered gold, a gold lid, and two cherubim of hammered gold, and could have weighted between 400 and 500 pounds.

Exodus 25 and 37 give us details of how it was made. Eventually, it contains two tablets of the Ten Commandments, Aaron’s rod (had sprouted. It not only sprouted, but it had also put forth buds, had produced blossoms.) and a pot of manna.

If it has survived through the ages, it is:


Popularly thought to be in a secret chamber deep within the Temple Mount, underneath the present-day Dome of the Rock. This could have been done before the destruction of the Temple in 586 B.C.

Or

In January 1979, Ron Wyatt claimed that his team had found the ark in a cave system north of the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem, but something happened that they were never able to retrace their steps to document their discovery.
Or

The ark was removed during the reign of Manasseh and taken to Egypt. The latest claim is that the ark has been seen in a church in Aksum, Ethiopia.

In my opinion, since the ark was never used in a profane manner and did carry with it the fear that one could be struck down that when Nebuchadnezzar in 585 B.C. destroyed the Temple, the collapse of the roof, walls, columns – the ark of the covenant was crushed and reduced to rubble, lost in the destruction or unearthed to be melted down for its gold. The people had been taken into slavery and so closed a great chapter of the nation in bondage.

The ark of the covenant is a great topic to study. The past three weeks could not cover in depth the details about how the ark was used, abused, and then lost.

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The Cracked Acorn: Am I Crazy?

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“As they went out, behold, they brought to him a dumb man possessed with a devil. 33 when the devil was cast out, the dumb spake: and the multitudes marveled, saying, It was never so seen in Israel. 34 But the Pharisees said, He casteth out devils through the prince of the devils.” – Matthew 9:32-34

One of our adopted sons was a delayed learning child and eligible for school programs that required him to meet with a psychiatrist and a psychologist, all needed for education. The Washington area has a large market for counseling psychology and mental health problems, but you may have to wait several months for appointments.

Consider the following from WMAL Radio, a short dose of British Humor:…Peter Cook and Dudley Moore in “Roger Goes to the Psychiatrist.”

“Good morning, Roger, and how are you?”
“I am happy and really love life, and I can’t really explain it to you !”
“Well, this is most encouraging, and I can see that your visits are paying off for you, and is there something that has given you this new lease on life?”
“Yes, doctor! It is because I have fallen in love with someone.”
“Oh, this is good news, with a woman?”
“Yes, doctor, and her name is Stephanie!”
“What a coincidence, Roger, that’s my wife’s name.”
“I know, and I can’t stand the thought of you touching her, and I want to hate you, NOW!”
“You are doing so well, and I understand your love for my wife, but this is most inconvenient that you want to hate me at this moment; could you pop by on Wednesday at 2 o’clock and hate me then ?”
“Yes, doctor, I can do that.”
“Goodbye, for now, Roger. You are doing so well, and I can’t wait to see you again on Wednesday.”


The Great Physician now is near, The sympathizing Jesus; He speaks the drooping heart to cheer, Oh, hear the voice of Jesus!
His name dispels my guilt and fear, No other name but Jesus; Oh, how my soul delights to hear the precious name of Jesus! (from SACRED SELECTIONS)

A last jab at psychology: Once, I had multiple personalities, but now we are feeling well.
I don’t suffer from insanity; I enjoy every minute.
I used to be indecisive. Now I’m not sure.
The best thing about being schizophrenic is that I’m never alone.
Just because you are paranoid doesn’t mean people aren’t out to get you!
Hypochondria is the only illness that I don’t have.

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The Cracked Acorn: The Bible

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The story is about a young man preparing for a long trip. He told his friend, “ I am just about packed; I only have to put in: a guide book, a mirror, a microscope, a lamp, a telescope, a volume of fine poetry, a few biographies, a package of old letters, a book of songs, a sword, a hammer, and a set of books I’ve been studying.”

“But you can’t get all that in your bag!” said his friend.

“Oh, yes, I can,” he replied, “It doesn’t take much room!” and with that, he placed his Bible in the corner of his suitcase and closed the lid. (told by Ernie Ford)

The preceding echoes the verse of 2 Timothy 2:15


(Work hard to present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker who does not need to be ashamed and correctly explains the word of truth.) NLT

We all want to successfully get through this life to our goal, which is heaven. I

n 1871*, JESUS, SAVIOR, PILOT ME- a well-known and sung from about all the hymnals that appeared in print. The author, Edward Hopper, had a small church near the New York harbor and met the spiritual needs of sailors going to and from their ships. Based on Matthew 8:23-27, he wrote of “tempestuous seas, of chart and compass, and boisterous waves” that obeyed God, who said, “Fear not, I will pilot thee.” Those who knew Edward Hopper kindly accredited him with this – “Happy is the man who can produce one song which the world will keep on singing after its author shall have passed away.”

(*1871 was a year that the German Empire was born, North Carolina was the first state to impeach and remove its governor, the Franco-Prussian war ended, the first photographs of Yellowstone National Park were taken, 33 whaling ships were caught in the ice, and abandoned off the north coast of Alaska, Orville Wright was born and Charles Babbage – credited with the origin of today’s computers, died.)

“Eternal Father, Strong to Save, Master the Tempest is Raging, Let the Lower Lights Be Burning, Throw Out The Lifeline, There Is A Sea, and Wonderful Grace Of Jesus” are a few of the songs that mention the seas or oceans and its perils, all written in an era when families suffered tragic events that were connected with the unknown of the deep and might sea.

“What is a pirate’s favorite kind of cookie? ”
“Ships ahoy”

“Why do pirates have both ears pierced? ”
“It only costs them a buccaneer!”

Pirates were the first to insulate their ships!
They did it for the “RRRR” value.

 

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The Cracked Acorn: The Un-Truth

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I remember on the farm when we got our first TV set (Yeah, I know the vast wasteland!)

Ask people if they watch anything, and most will say that they have seen the CLOSURE. Consider Season 11, #5: – I’ve seen this one twice (a Los Angeles Murder Unit, Chief Brenda Johnson) A teenager has been caught in a domestic situation and hit twice by bullet fragments. Little hope if he recovers. The nurse tells the Chief that his mother is on her way from Hawaii.

Brenda is now sitting at Donnie’s bedside – “Mother, is that you?” (there is a pregnant moment)
Chief: “Yes, I am here!”
Donnie: “I have always been a problem for you, and sorry!”
Chief Johnson: “I have always loved you!”
He slips into a drugged coma and is gone!”
Brenda steps into the hallway & met by one of her Units.
“Are you OK, Chief? Sit down here for a while!”

Conclusion: the Chief is known for her talent that she can make anyone tell the truth, and here she broke the rule, but we were not there. In all episodes, Brenda is always nibbling on bits of candy and looking for her large purse. She puts on the air that she doesn’t have much of a brain and foils the guilty. Management knows that she should give it up…but knows that will never happen. { must confess that the times I have seen this particular episode, I have dewy eyes.}


ENDING: the SPIRITUAL -Were You There? Mark 15:25 verse – “Were you there when they crucified my Lord?” (Were you there?)

Sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble.
Were you there when He rose up from the grave?
Sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble.
Were you there when the Savior calls my name (I’ll be there!)
Sometime it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble.
I’ll be there when the Savior calls my name (I’ll be there.)
Sometime it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble.
[Problem sinner, Are you there?} Please say. “I’m here!]
================================================:
When tomorrow starts without me
And I’m not there to see;
If the sun should rise and find your eyes
All filled with tears for me.

I wish so much you wouldn’t cry
The way you did today;
While thinking of the many things
We didn’t get to say.

I know how much you love me
As much as I love you;
And each time that you think of me,
I know you’ll miss me too.

But when tomorrow starts without me
Please try to understand,
That an angel came and called my name
(David Romano)

P.S. I always told my late wife at the end of the day that I loved her. Her reply was, “I know!”

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The Cracked Acorn: Wealth

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John 6:9 – .. lad here, hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many?

A man had done well and made a fortune in the business world. He had everything. You name it!! He could buy it. The years went by, and he contacted a local establishment that honored the final wishes of his estate. His will would read that he was to be dressed in a tuxedo and top hat, sitting in the back seat of the biggest limousine, and driven to his resting place. The world turned and turned, and after many years, the day came, and he was placed dressed as instructed and sitting in the back seat, ready for his last luxury ride. The limo passed by two children playing; they saw this rich display, and one little boy remarked, “Wow, that’s living!”`

Today there are lots of such illusions. If we could just buy one more lottery ticket, it might be the one that would set us up as a multi-millionaire, and then all our problems would be over, or would they? Many think so!! I was always told that behind every dark cloud is a silver lining and a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. The Taj Mahal in India is an illusion, a beautiful building with only one purpose in mind.

“I care not today what tomorrow may bring, If shadow or sunshine or rain. The Lord, I know ruleth o’er everything, and all of my worry is vain. LIVING by faith in Jesus above, Trusting, confiding in His great love; From all harm safe in His sheltering arm, I’m LIVING by faith and feel no alarm.” Songs of Faith & Praise#560


Matthew 25:33 – But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things shall be yours as well.
Luke 18:22 – One thing you lack. Sell all that you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.
Mark 8:36 – For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? 

The Bible does not condemn the possession of wealth. The danger is in the love of wealth, whereby a variety of temptations and danger to our immortal soul enter. The cautions of wealth mentioned in the Scriptures are just as important today. (I Timothy 6:10)

I would rather have one small rose
From the garden of a friend
Than to have the choicest flowers
When my stay on Earth must end.

I would rather have one pleasant word
In kindness said to me
Than flattery when my heart is still
And my life on Earth has ceased to be.

I would rather have a loving smile
From friends I know are true
Than tears shed round my casket
When this world I’ve bid Adieu.

Bring me all your flowers today
Whether pink, white or red:
I’d rather have one blossom now
Than a truckload when I’m dead.

“Golden Gates” by J.A., McClung

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The Cracked Acorn: Time Wings

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What time am I afraid? I will trust in thee. (Psalm 56:3)

I’ve heard that time can move fast or slow. I think that it moves the slowest when you are in a store line waiting to pay. This would be at eleven in the morning on a weekday. I have been caught in these and try to reason it out and think that this is life. I do begin to wonder why this person is returning the third time to the car to ask their mother for more money. I notice that the lady in front of me has a fifty-dollar bill ready to pay for a pack of smokes. In the other line (this is a two-line gas convenience store), a patron is turning out his pockets to pay for gasoline. He is beckoning his fellow passengers to come in and help with the money. The person at the head of my line is using a credit card to pay for a loaf of bread. Wow! At card rates, this loaf may become rather pricey. (Oh, I had wings like a dove! For then would I fly away and be at rest. – Ps. 55:6)

When I finally pay and escape this store, I wind up in another line at the grocery store. No 10 or 15 items line here! You wait your turn. Carts are piled high. Food has not gone out of style. Are these people inviting everyone in the nearby town to lunch and dinner? I begin to think of ways to let management know that life is threescore & ten. I am there in life, so could I cut to the front line and enjoy my remaining time elsewhere?

The news media tells us that there are more senior citizens yearly. Well, I think that there should be stores for us. We should be able to have all the time we need to pick over the shelves without concern about those long lines. It is cutting into our time when we observe the weather and watch the clouds. Someone close to me will also mention that it is probably shortening my naps. I would miss the little ones. I couldn’t go without all the cellphone conversations that I am party to while in line.


When the cell plays its merry tune, the rest of us become invisible. “Yes, Aunt Bea is doing better if she would only take her pills and follow the doctor’s advice. Yes, I know the new Mercedes is in the showroom.” Parents are using the cell to track the kids at home, or are they at home? I can’t help but wonder if our native Americans did the same thing with smoke signals. Two puffs-your mother-in-law is here from Shawnee. Three puffs-are you on your way home? Four puffs-it’s buffalo again tonight. One puff- a long and slow one meaning “I still love you.”

Remember how short my time is: wherefore hast thou made all men in vain? (Psalm 89:47)

So be careful how you act; these are difficult days. Don’t be fools; be wise: make the most of every opportunity you have for doing good. (Ephesians 5:15,16- The Living New Testament))

The customer ahead of me at the supermarket checkout counter had written a check for her purchases and was waiting for the clerk to package them. Instead, citing “company policy,” he asked her for identification. The shopper looked astounded, then finally managed to say, “But David, I’m your mother!” ( SUPERMARKET humor)

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Fall Bazaar will be held Friday, Sept 30th, from 4:30 – 6:30 pm, and Saturday, October 1st, from 8 am – 2 pm, in the Front Royal United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall. Baked goods, jewelry[...]
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Fall Bazaar @ FRUMC Fellowship Hall
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Fall Bazaar @ FRUMC Fellowship Hall
Fall Bazaar will be held Saturday, October 1st, from 8 am – 2 pm, in the Front Royal United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall. Baked goods, jewelry and accessories, Silent Auction, holiday decorations, and apple dumplings[...]
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Fall Farm Days: The Nature of Sk... @ Sky Meadows State Park
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Historic Area. During Fall Farm Days’ Nature Weekend, get in touch with nature and explore a managed landscape rich in biodiversity. Discover native flora and fauna, learn the craft of beekeeping, the importance of various[...]
11:00 am The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
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Historic Area. The forge is fired up and the blacksmiths are hard at work in the Historic Area. Members of the Blacksmith Guild of the Potomac have set up shop and are ready to show[...]
5:00 pm WATTS 3rd Annual Fundraiser @ Bowling Green Country Club North
WATTS 3rd Annual Fundraiser @ Bowling Green Country Club North
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11:00 am Fall Farm Days: The Nature of Sk... @ Sky Meadows State Park
Fall Farm Days: The Nature of Sk... @ Sky Meadows State Park
Oct 2 @ 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
Fall Farm Days: The Nature of Sky Meadows @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area. During Fall Farm Days’ Nature Weekend, get in touch with nature and explore a managed landscape rich in biodiversity. Discover native flora and fauna, learn the craft of beekeeping, the importance of various[...]
11:00 am The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
Oct 2 @ 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
The Farmer’s Forge @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area. The forge is fired up and the blacksmiths are hard at work in the Historic Area. Members of the Blacksmith Guild of the Potomac have set up shop and are ready to show[...]
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