No Translation Required

no-translation-required.pngDating back as far as 1911 in the March 28th issue of the Syracuse Standard the cliché, “A picture is worth a thousand words,” was first used by the newspaper’s editor Tess Flanders. This fascinating cliché quite literally has stood the test of time. Regardless of the era in which it is used people understand its intent.

From incredibly creative works of art and sculpture, to cleverly captured photographs, millions have stood amazed and awed at an artist’s ability to portray a moment in time. Be it on the battlefield, in nature, or in everyday life, these pictures tell stories that defy the barriers of language, time, culture, or circumstance.

Rembrandt and Van Gogh were Dutch. Picasso was Spanish. Monet French. Da Vinci was Italian. Yet, when we view their works, we’re mystified by how much they transcend human language to tell stories through their works. Why is that? Some things don’t require translation.

Pictures taken from 9/11 tell the horrific story at times even better than eyewitness accounts, because sometimes a picture is indeed worth a thousand words.

Prior to the Vietnam War, the American public had spent the better part of a century insulated from the atrocities of combat, while soldiers witnessed first-hand the barbaric bloodshed. But the moment the public was provided with pictures and video of the horrors of war, their conscience was assaulted as they viewed the violence from the comfort of their living rooms.

Some things do not require a translation.

While these examples spell out stories of tragedy and hardship, there are other things in life we experience everyday that require no translation but have immediate and profound implications upon our lives and those with whom we interact.

Kindness, courtesy, compassion, mercy, and care seldom if ever require translation – they’re known as love in virtually an language.

A smile, a firm handshake, a warm embrace, eyes welled up with tears – no real translation necessary. With very few exceptions, we can all relate on some level to these feelings and moments. They speak to us in ways no human language ever could.

Now, I point you to a blood-soaked tree with the remnants of a brutally beaten and battered innocent man who was precariously nailed and pierced through, leaving a fountain of blood and water streaming out of his side splashing on the ground below; no translation required.

But three days later, a miracle of monumental and galactic proportions took place that defied description. A sight no one had ever witnessed before; This same man who had been carefully laid to rest had triumphantly risen from that grave by the resurrection power of God! An empty tomb where once the very much dead Christ laid? No translation required.

Peter attempts to describe a state of joy as “unspeakable,” defying description, a joy so profound and so powerful that the human language falls short every single time. This is what we can enjoy in the life of the Risen Savior Jesus Christ.

His unwavering love, His unending mercy, His boundless compassion toward His children? Mortal words fail us.

Whom having not seen, we love; in whom, though now we see him not, yet believing, we rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: (1 Peter 1:8)

Some things not only do not require a translation. They defy description altogether.

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute.  One Minute Inspirational Sermonettes, Devotionals, and Sermon Ideas for Busy Christians, Pastors, Teachers, and Bible Students!  Visit our ABOUT PAGE  for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you.  ~ RD Mangold

When Words Aren’t Enough

WordsNOTEnoughSometimes mere words aren’t enough. Sometimes what we’re facing escapes the bounds of language and human description. Sometimes what we face defies our ability to make any sense. It’s in moments like this that our hearts are broken, our faith is challenged, and we’re so crushed that to even pray seems impossible.

Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Romans 8:26

In another portion of scripture we learn we have a high priest which can be touched with the feeling of our infirmities (Hebrews 4:14-16). How could something like this even be possible? Jesus didn’t just teach and preach compassion, He was and is the embodiment of it.

Jesus, upon the death of His friend Lazarus, and seeing Mary weep, “He groaned in the spirit, and was troubled.” (John 11:33)

For the man, Christ Jesus, mere words could not describe the grief He was experiencing in that moment of loss. Let the irony, transparency, and humanity of that moment sink in; the ONE whom John said was THE WORD (John 1:14), had no words. He wept. He groaned. He was troubled.

Why is Jesus so qualified to come to your aid? He doesn’t sit idly by and witness your pain and suffering, He too groans in earnest empathetic pain, and He’s ready to do something about it.

Have any hopes and dreams that are “3-Days-Dead” and you fear smell so bad you couldn’t bear the sight of even thinking they could be brought back to life? Not only is your pain real, your God is real. His creative and regenerative powers are ready to swoop in and remedy your hurt! His resurrection power can and will breath new life into those long-forgotten dreams, hopes, and God given promises!

Before God’s Spirit would eventually intercede with unutterable “groanings” that were too great, too intense, too overwhelming, and too painful for words, Jesus groaned and wept with humanity, committing to never leave us nor forsake us. Praise God…now we can boldly say, “The Lord is my helper!

When words aren’t enough – God’s love is always enough!

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute.  One Minute Inspirational Sermonettes, Devotionals, and Sermon Ideas for Busy Christians, Pastors, Teachers, and Bible Students!  Visit our ABOUT PAGE  for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you.  ~ RD Mangold

Truth without Charity? Not a Chance!

truthcharity-e1532095436348.jpgThough I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. 2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. 3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing. (Passage Link: I Corinthians 13: 1-3)

Many of us are so good at being religious that we spend more time polishing our crown and our religious attitude than we do actually evangelizing the lost. We are never called to be religious just simply servants. He set the greatest example in the upper room the night of his betrayal when he washed the feet of the disciples. He said, but he that is greatest among shall be your servant.

We are to love one another and remember all the while that it was God who so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son to die for it. We can’t be religious and not have love; otherwise everything we do is in vain.

If you want to add more depth to your spirit try loving people’s souls as much as you do your own. Try loving their heart as much as you do your own. Share with them the only true love there is to be had and that’s the love Jesus has for them. Don’t be judgmental of people, killing them, making them despise anything with a religious label on it. We are living in a very difficult day where many religious groups are labeled as HATERS. We supposedly hate gays, drug abusers, prostitutes, and every person that hasn’t got a religious background like us. We don’t hate them we hate the sin and the effects it has on mankind. Where’s your compassion tonight, where’s the mercy you so willingly accept from the Lord, where’s the love and charity that will take your walk with God from being like tinkling brass and a sounding cymbal to something far deeper and more powerful?

Is it possible to have truth without charity? God says NO!

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute.  One Minute Spiritual Sermonettes and Sermon Ideas  for Busy Christians, Pastors, Teachers, and Bible Students!  Visit our ABOUT PAGE  for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you.  Rev. RD Mangold

Looking Your Miracle in the Eye

Now there is at Jerusalem by the sheep market a pool, which is called in the Hebrew tongue Bethesda, having five porches. 3 In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the moving of the water. 4 For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had. (Passage Link: John 5:2-9)

This compelling story finds Jesus amongst a multitude of sick and infirm surrounding the mystical pool at Bethesda. One man stands out, who had been ill for 38 years.

Jesus’ question cut to the chase, “Wilt thou be made whole?”

The disenfranchised man replied, “Sir, I have no man!”

On the contrary Jesus must have been thinking – “I AM THE MAN!”

–       Jesus must have thought, “I don’t care what’s going on in that pool, this man needs a miracle NOW!”

–       This man so focused on what he thought was going to get him his miracle, he failed to recognize he was looking his miracle in the eye!

He had an urgent need, but felt he was at the mercy of an angel, some troubled water and a man…

–       The only mercy he ever needed was the mercy of God!

–       The only man he ever needed was the man Jesus Christ!

Today he could stop guessing whether or not someone would come to his rescue…

JESUS WAS READY TO PERFORM THE MIRACLE – NO GUESSING INVOLVED!

Guessing whether or not today is the day for your miracle is like doubting God can or will perform it.

JUST LIKE THE MAN AT THE POOL OF BETHESDA JESUS HAS GOOD NEWS…

 YOU AREN’T WAITING FOR YOUR MIRACLE…YOUR MIRACLE IS WAITING FOR YOU!

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute.  One Minute Spiritual Sermonettes and Sermon Ideas  for Busy Christians, Pastors, Teachers, and Bible Students!  Visit our ABOUT PAGE  for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you.  Rev. RD Mangold

Big Lessons in Small Packages – Pray vs. Prey

Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: 32And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you. Ephesians 4:31 – 32

One day while I was waiting for the light to change, a brown blur of feathers entered the intersection. Three sparrows were entangled in what resembled a World War II “dogfight.” Tragically, the embittered birds were so engulfed in warfare they never saw the vehicle that seconds later wiped out all three combatants in one fell swoop.

The analogy was inescapable. The misguided birds were so fixated on attacking each other they all lost their lives. Paul warned us, For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places (Eph. 6:12).

Our enemy is NOT each other! Satan is our foe, and a defeated one at that! He wants to destroy all hope of you spending eternity with Christ. But, “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world (I John 4:4).

Let brotherly love continue, building up rather than attacking each other. Let’s stop “warring” against each other or the enemy of our souls could easily destroy us “unawares!”

Sparrows are NOT birds of prey. Likewise, we should pray for, not prey on, each other.

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“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute.  One Minute Spiritual Sermonettes and Sermon Ideas  for Busy Christians, Pastors, Teachers, and Bible Students!  Visit our ABOUT PAGE  for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you.  Rev. RD Mangold

God's View Inside vs. Man's View Outside

But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD sees not as man sees; for man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart. I Samuel 16:7

When reading this text we could view man’s inability to see through to the heart as a negative; it’s not – it’s a reality. When God looks on the heart, only He can fairly judge the “thoughts and intents of the heart.” But, man is not helpless in making some judgment calls.

On several occasions the bible indicates man’s judgment is based on what he sees outwardly. Unfortunately, that doesn’t always tell the whole story if our intent is to mask our true feelings. Good or bad our outward appearance tells a story.

Even Jesus indicated this by saying, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works (outward appearance – my addition), and glorify your Father which is in heaven (Matt. 5:16).” In other words, what you do reflects your relationship (or lack thereof) with your Heavenly Father.

Next time you feel it doesn’t matter what you do, and people shouldn’t judge based on the things you say and the choices you make – remember, man looks on the outward; it’s the only way he can judge your character. There may be some bias, but it’s a reality even God knows exists. The best way to be properly judged by both God and man is to ensure both your heart and your actions align properly with God’s perfect will!  

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

Where Were You God?

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. 9For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8 – 9

Facing calamities that challenge our faith to its core, our tendency may be to lay blame. “Where were you God, you should have done something!” We’re quick to point our human finger in the face of our Creator and accuse Him of inaction.

I do not purport to have an answer that will assuage our anxiety, but I will caution against recklessly “blaming” God or saying it is “God’s fault.” God doesn’t owe us an answer or explanation. In the face of his trial, Job demanded an audience with God. When God actually showed up, Job was dumbfounded! God had a few questions for him, “Gird up now thy loins like a man; for I will demand of thee, and answer thou me. Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding.” (Job 38:3-4)

We celebrate getting something we don’t deserve when it’s good. However, when getting something we don’t deserve, and it’s bad, we question God’s sense of fairness and justice. Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. (Galatians 6:7 –8)

If you’re finding yourself feeling slighted, and pleading your case before God, be careful questioning God…He may have a few questions of His own!

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold