Outreach Center Network News Letter
In this issue:
Snow and Ashes – a Devotion
Outreach Center updates
The 7 Ups!
A POSITIVE THOUGHT
Each article will begin with ###. You may move to the next article by searching for this.
### Snow and Ashes
Reading this I have to assume you are inside, warm and comfortable. Many parts of the U.S. have had lots of snow this winter. Snow makes the roads difficult for driving and walkways treacherous for walking. Having had physical sight for 11 years, I remember looking out a window and viewing snow as pretty. It blankets everything in a white clean covering. In its own way it is pretty and delightful. And now, being blind, I love to step out onto the porch just after a snowfall to hear the quiet that blankets the world. Snow makes the sounds different, almost unnoticed, and peaceful.
Ashes are dirty and they make other things dirty. They are a result of a fire: a fire which burned up what was once there, leaving only the dirty remains.
“Earth to earth, ashes to ashes, and dust to dust.” Those are the words used
at a funeral. Those words are God's words concerning sinful fallen humanity. Like it or not, this means you and me.
What a contrast of color and content: snow and ashes.
What a visual picture of god’s love: snow and ashes. Even the taste, smell and touch of snow and ashes are completely different from one another.
As the white snow covers up the black ashes, so too the red blood of Jesus covers up the stain of sin on our souls.
Snow can be pretty to look at but it’s a mess to drive in. So too is our life: At times it’s pretty nice but at other times it’s a mess.
During Lent which begins on Ash Wednesday, February 26, we consider Jesus and the extreme mess and death he experience, all for you and me.
During Lent, which begins with Ash Wednesday, we consider Jesus and how he is rebuilding our lives from the ashes. He renews our life!
Isaiah 1:18 "Come now, let us reason together," says the Lord. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.
I recently went through the list of outreach centers, updating those which are open and closed. In all there were 87 centers. The first center was opened in March of 1999 in Pittsburgh PA. It remains open. The last center to open was in Bay City MI in June of 2012. It remains open as well. Of the 87 centers 48 centers remain open and 39 centers have closed. Of the 48 open centers I have not heard anything from seven centers for several years. This leads me to believe they are not open, but I am not 100% sure.
In conclusion, there are 41 active outreach center scattered around the country. Praise God for his wonderful work. Pray for their outreach and their sharing of Jesus with others who are blind.
### The 7 Ups!
1. Wake Up!!
Decide to have a good day.
'This is the day the Lord has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it.'
2. Dress Up!!
The best way to dress up is to put on a smile.
A smile is an inexpensive way to improve your looks.
'The Lord does not look at the things man looks at.
Man looks at outward appearance,
but the Lord looks at the heart.'
1 Samuel 16:7
3. Shut Up!!
Say nice things and learn to listen.
God gave us two ears and one mouth,
so He must have meant for us to do twice as much listening as talking.
'He who guards his lips guards his soul.'
4. Stand Up!!
. . . For what you believe in.
Stand for something or you will fall for anything.
'Let us not be weary in doing good; for at the proper time, we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good...'
5. Look Up!!
. . . To the Lord.
'I can do everything through Christ who strengthens me'.
6. Reach Up!!
. . . For something higher.
'Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and lean not unto your own understanding.
In all your ways, acknowledge Him, and He will direct your path.'
7. Lift Up!!
. . . your Prayers.
'Do not worry about anything; instead
PRAY ABOUT EVERYTHING.'
### A POSITIVE THOUGHT
If God had a refrigerator, your picture would be on it.
If He had a wallet, your photo would be in it.
He sends you flowers every spring, and a sunrise every morning.
Whenever you want to talk, He'll listen.
He could live anywhere in the universe, and He chose your heart.
What about the Christmas gift He sent you in Bethlehem; not to mention that Friday at Calvary.
Face it, He's crazy about you.
God answers Knee-Mail!
I have kleptomania, but when it gets bad, I take something for it.
My short-term memory is not as sharp as it used to be. Also, my short-term memory is not as sharp as it used to be.
In just two days from now, tomorrow will be yesterday.
I may be schizophrenic, but at least I have each other.
I am Nobody. Nobody is perfect. Therefore, I am perfect.
Dyslexics have more nuf.
In Memoriam: With all the sadness and trauma going on in the world at the moment, it is worth reflecting on the death of a very important person, which almost went unnoticed last week. Larry LaPrise, the man who wrote “The Hokey Pokey,” died peacefully at age 93. The most traumatic part for his family was getting him into the coffin. They put his left leg in. And then the trouble started. . .
When you work here, you can name your own salary. I named mine “Fred.”
Money isn’t everything, but it sure keeps the kids in touch.
Red meat is not bad for you. Fuzzy green meat is bad for you.
I am having an out-of-money experience.
Don’t sweat the petty things. Don’t pet the sweaty things.
Corduroy pillows are making headlines!
I want to die while asleep like my grandfather, not screaming in terror like the passengers in his car.
### Final Thoughts
In upcoming issues we can and will look at many of the same topics as well as others. If you have questions, thoughts or suggestions, please send them to me or post them on the blind ministry email list.