Worship

Children, loud and boisterous, running and jumping, they laugh loudly and giggle uncontrollably. Somebody needs to tell them to be quiet they are getting on my nerves. They are marking up the walls and scratching the floor and one of them just spilled his juice on the pew cushion. 

And yet the best clue we have as to what kind of worship style Jesus prefers is found in Mark 10:13–16;  Then they brought little children to Him, that He might touch them; but the disciples rebuked those who brought them. But when Jesus saw it, He was greatly displeased and said to them, Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of God. Assuredly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will by no means enter it.” And He took them up in His arms, laid His hands on them, and blessed them.” (Mark 10:13–16)

            We are sending the children out of the room and telling them to be quiet because we are trying to worship, but Jesus is saying, “Hey leave them alone”!  Do you want to know what worship in heaven is like?  Then watch the little children. They crawl all over Jesus. They laugh, they giggle and Jesus tickles them so they will laugh some more. When they get tired, they sit in his lap and cuddle with Him.

            Maybe, just maybe, we can get it through our thick heads that worship is not for our sake. Worship is for God’s pleasure. That is what He tells us in Psalms 149:2-4, Let Israel rejoice in their Maker; Let the children of Zion be joyful in their King. Let them praise His name with the dance; Let them sing praises to Him with the timbrel and harp. For the Lord takes pleasure in His people.”   

            Let’s learn to worship with joy, laughter and even dancing. Then when we get tired we can climb up unto His lap, lean back and rest in our Savior’s arms. 

Douglas & Deborah Huff

From Down Where The Pavement Ends

Thanksgiving

I love Thanksgiving. Families spend time together and there’s always plenty of turkey, dressing and gravy. Thanksgiving comes at the best time of the year. I love the falling leaves, the cool days, the cold nights and the smell of smoke from someone’s fireplace. I love Thanksgiving for many reasons, but most of all I love the fact that grateful people are giving thanks to our good and gracious God.

In First Thessalonians, Paul the Apostle teaches us about thanksgiving. He begins by showing us that we should give thanks always for one another. We should be thankful for our churches, church leaders and our pastors. As we thank God for our friends and loved ones, we should also constantly lift each other up in prayer.

The Word of God tells us that it is His will that we should give thanks in everything. Now, I do not think that God is insisting that we give thanks for all things because there are some things that we are just not going to be thankful for. However, God has promised never to leave us or forsake us. Therefore, no matter what circumstance we are in, we can always give thanks because we know that God is in it with us.

The Bible teaches that we are to rejoice always, because there is always joy to be found in Jesus. We should pray without ceasing, because we have a God who never ceases to listen to our prayers. In everything we can give thanks, because God is victorious over all things.

I love Thanksgiving because on this day and every day, I know that my gracious God is worthy of all my gratitude.

Douglas & Deborah Huff

From Down Where the Pavement Ends

Anyhow

We are a blessed people. We woke up in a dry and comfortable place this morning. Most of us had a good breakfast, if we wanted it. Indeed, God has given to most of us more toys, stuff and valuable junk than we ever had any right to expect. However, no matter how much stuff God has given us, we always want more. It seems that we are never satisfied.

The world has a way of convincing us that God’s gifts are not enough. Sometimes we accuse God of not being good to us just because we cannot afford the latest gadget. But, as much as we grumble and complain, we cannot deny that God has blessed us beyond anything we ever deserved. The fact is our Father in Heaven has provided our every need according to His riches in heaven.

As for me when I woke up this morning, I was cool, dry and comfortable. I knew I was going to have something to eat. I am healthy, so to God be the Glory. I said thank you Jesus for blessing me so much. However, I know that life can change in the blink of an eye. Tomorrow I may wake up in a cold damp cave. I may wake up hungry and sick. We never know what another day may bring into our lives. But this I do know, the God who is worthy of praise when life is easy, is also worthy of praise when life is hard.

In Philippians 4:11, the Apostle Paul tells us that he had learned to be content in whatever state he found himself. Paul knew that no matter what he faced in life, God was good and greatly to be praised. So let us learn to be content in what ever state we find ourselves. In good times or bad, in comfort or pain, in sickness or health, let us lift our hearts to heaven and praise God anyhow.

Douglas & Deborah Huff

From Down Where the Pavement Ends

This Old House

This Old House

On April 16,1978 Deborah and I were married. On that day, by God’s Grace the two of us became one . In 1979 we purchased a house and it has been our home every since . In this house we have laughed and cried, we have fought and made up, we have celebrated and mourned. This is were we live. In this house we raised our family and every inch of it is coated with memories. It is our home, but it is not us, it is not our marriage.

This house greatly reflects our personalities. We are familiar with all the creaks and pops and every crack in the walls. There is contentment to be found in its every flaw and we want no more comfortable place than is our house. But if it is taken from us tonite and if tomorrow we are homeless we will still have each other because what God has joined together nothing can put asunder. You see this house is our home, but it is not us, it is not our marriage.

All over this land there are buildings that people call churches. Some are beautiful brick and mortar structures while others look more like metal warehouses. In these buildings church members have laughed and cried, they have fought and made up and they have celebrated and they have mourned. In these buildings the family of God has grown and they are filled with memories. But if all these buildings were destroyed today and we had no place to gather, we would still gather and we would still worship God. These buildings are not the church, they are not our salvation.

The church is the bride of Christ, Jesus is the bridegroom . He loves the church and He gave His life for her. But when Jesus said,” I will build my Church” He was not talking about brick and mortar. No, He was talking about us. Those of us who are His followers, we are His bride, we are His church. We have been chosen by God to be precious, living stones in the spiritual house that Jesus is building.

One day all these buildings that people call churches will rot and burn, they were never meant to be permanent. However The church that is the bride of Christ is built on a firm foundation and will never fail. Christ loves the church and gave Himself for us, He has sanctified and cleanse us and one day we will be presented to Him as a glorious church, holy and without blemish.

Douglas & Deborah Huff

From Down Where The Pavement Ends

In Honor of Veterans Day

“Thank you for your service.” We always mean well when we say this but I have noticed many veterans seem to be embarrassed by the recognition. It is as if they would say,” I was just doing my job”. Yes, they had a job to do and they did it well. Veteran’s Day and everyday a grateful nation says thank you for a job well done. Myself, I will always be proud to be an American where at least I know I’m free and I will never forget those of you who served so faithfully to preserve that right for me.

This devotion is an audio podcast. In it I wish to say thank you and honor all brave Veterans who served our nation so faithfully. Please Click the link below to listem

https://podpoint.com/pavement-ends-ministry/in-honor-of-veterans-day?fbclid=IwAR1KSo1g3ku5FiscoCTVgaXVhZ1hWB5llj6WHHd6rQD4fkQsAbp_OitNpu4#

The One Who Gives the Most

Sitting in the synagogue next to the collection box, Jesus watched as the people brought their offerings. The wealthy and the influential put their money in with great ceremony. Their many large coins made a lot of noise as they were dropped into the box. The big shots wanted to impress everyone with their generosity. But Jesus wasn’t impressed.

That same day an old widow woman came into the synagogue. Quietly she dropped her two mites into the collection box. The wealthy and influential looked at her giving with great disdain. They considered her and her offering to be insignificant. But Jesus was excited about her giving. He was impressed with her generosity.

Now, the wealthy and the influential people are impressive to the world. They will have buildings named after them, they will sit on the board of directors and worldly people will call them great. But they do not impress Jesus, and He does not call them great. He knows they give from their overflow. He also knows their large coins are just a small part of their livelihood and will never be missed.

The old woman means nothing to most people. No buildings will have her name on them and no one will ask her opinion about anything. But Jesus is impressed with her giving and He is excited about her greatness. He knows that she is giving all she has and while most people see it as little, Jesus sees it as much. He knows that her offering is her life.

We must understand this, Jesus does not care about the haul of the offering plate. He only cares about the heart of the giver. One day we will all stand before the Savior. When you do, He will not ask how much money you gave or what great things you did for your church. You see, He does not care about the amount you give as long as you trust Him with all that you have. He does not need your money, but He longs to have your heart.

Douglas & Deborah Huff

From Down Where the Pavement Ends

Enoch’s Walk

Here is a riddle for you. In the Bible I lived longer than any other man, but I died before my father did. Who am I? Of course most people know that Methuselah is the man who lived the longest. But how is it possible for him to live the longest and yet he dies before his father does? Well, the simple answer is this. His father was Enoch, a man who never experienced death. Enoch was a righteous man. One day as he walked with God, the door of Heaven was open to him so he walked right in and he was never seen on earth again.

When we read the story of Enoch in Genesis 5, we find that he walked with God after the birth of his son Methuselah. Was he a righteous man before the birth of his son? I don’t know, but I do know that he did walk with God after Methuselah was born. I believe the weight of responsibility that came with this seven or eight pound baby boy drove Enoch to his knees. Enoch realized that walking with God was the only way he could ever be the father that Methuselah needed him to be.

The Bible teaches that, “Children are a heritage from the LORD. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth.” Arrows are made to fly high and fly far. They are also made to fly straight and true. But it is the strength of the archer that bends the bow and launches the arrow. It is the skill of the archer that aims the arrow and hits the target and it is the wise archer who develops arrows to be true and straight.

The Word of God is clear. It is the responsibility of daddy to train up a child in the way he should go. A father should encourage his children to fly high and fly far, but he also must teach them to fly straight and true. This is a terrifying responsibility because the truth is unless he trusts in God no man has the strength, the skill, or the wisdom that children need from their daddy. Therefore the challenge is for every daddy to be like Enoch and to become known as a man who walks with God.

Douglas Huff & Deborah Huff
From Down Where The Pavement Ends

Try a Little Kindness

I am determined to treat everyone with kindness. I do not care who you are, what color your skin is, or what lifestyle you have chosen, I am going to be polite to you. I may not agree with you about a lot of things, but when I speak to you, I’m going to use words like yes sir, no sir, please, thank you and excuse me.I am convinced that good manners would revolutionize this nation.

I also believe that crude, rude, vile and vulgar language have no place in a civilized society. People who persistently use such language are to be pitied. When you use such language, you cause other people to have a low opinion of you. You can go a long way toward improving your lot in this life if you will determine to only use good language.

The Bible teaches us that, “all bitterness, wrath, and evil speaking should be put away from you, . And that we should. be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.” And we are also told that, ” The meek shall inherit the earth. Another place in the Bible He tells us that, “ a gentle answer turns away wrath.”

In the world today, it seems that rudeness, crudeness, vileness and vulgarity are celebrated. It also seems that mean-spirited and cruel people are admired. However, the Bible teaches that kind, tenderhearted, forgiving, meek and gentle are all words that describe good people. This words also describe people with whom God is pleased.

God has commanded us to love our neighbor as we love ourselves. We are also commanded to love God with all our heart. If we love God with all our heart, His love will compel us to be polite to everyone. So it does not matter who they are, what color their skin is or what lifestyle they have chosen we must determine to treat everyone with kindness.

Douglas Huff

From Down Where The Pavement Ends

pavementendsministry@gmail.com

Jesus Loves Broken People

What kind of people do you think Jesus likes to hang around with? Some people think that Jesus would never be near a drug addict, an alcoholic, or any person who does bad things. The Bible teaches that we are to be perfect just as He is perfect. So does that mean Jesus only hangs out with perfect people? Do you think that He prefers to be around preachers, Sunday School teachers and other church people? After all, church people are perfect right? Righttt!

Do you have self-inflicted scars and pains from past mistakes? Do you have wounds on your heart that still fester years after someone has hurt you? If so, I have good news for you. You are the kind of person Jesus wants to spend time with. Jesus loves broken people. The Bible tells us that, “The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart,” So if you have a broken heart or a broken marriage, if you are the victim of broken promises or broken dreams, you can be sure that God has a special love for you.

Most people have serious problems in their lives. Maybe you are an addict of some kind. Most of us are. Maybe your marriage is closer to hell than it is to heaven. Perhaps you have a child who has broken your heart or maybe it is a parent that has broken your heart. If so read Psalms 147:3 and find the promise that God will not turn away from a broken and contrite heart.

All people have an element of brokenness within them, but few realize that God can turn their brokenness into a blessing. The blessedness of brokenness is this; God knows you by name and He wants to mend your wounds and heal your broken heart. Jesus said “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” Many of you have darkness in your hearts that comes from brokenness. But Jesus says we do not have to walk in darkness because His Light can overcome our brokenness.

Douglas & Deborah Huff