Friday Men’s Group 1/15/21

Tree Sap

“For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature,
have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.”
(Romans 1:20

Hi Men:

I hope you had a good week “in” the Lord.  As we look out across the horizon, it should be quite evident that it is more important now than ever we keep our eyes fixed on Christ.  Most of you will recall the verse in Hebrews 12:

“……….let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with perseverance
the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfector of our faith………….”

In light of what’s going on right now, it would be very easy to get entangled in areas that we may have no business getting involved in which could easily take our eyes off Jesus.  Remember what the Bible says about entanglement:

“No soldier in active service entangles himself in the affairs of everyday life, so that he may please the one who enlisted him as a soldier.”  (2 Timothy 2:4)

As believers, we are soldiers for Christ, guarding oneself to not get overly involved in the in the affairs of this world, so we can bring glory to the One that called us into service.  It might also be good to reflect on 1 John 2:15, “Do not love the world nor the things in the world.  If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.”  That verse is pretty clear and can be connected with Romans 12:2We have a lot to pray about………


 So what’s with the photo above?  Tree sap?  Like my good friend John Hartshorn in Colorado, we both have been working with our trees lately.  John to a larger extent, but he got an earlier start and has a larger inventory 🙂   As I trim my Mondale Pines, in a short order as you all know, the trees put out sap…..  and as kids we all got sap on us from climbing trees.  I never did any serious thinking on tree sap (like who would), so the weirdo side of me took a little time to study it.  Well, there is more information out there than I could have ever imagined.  Most of you know that when a branch breaks or is cut, the sap oozes out which acts like a band aid to keep it from being infected, mainly by various bugs that will bore in and lay eggs.  By the way, in the above photo, the red color at the top of the cut is just the paint from the blade of my reciprocating saw.  But if you made a cut from this tree, it would bleed red.

This tree is called the “Dragon’s Blood Tree” and when cut the resin is blood red.  The resin is used for treatment of diarrhea, superficial wounds, bleeding ulcers, dysentery, fever and also for lipstick, glue and varnish for violins.   As you can tell the tree itself looks like a giant mushroom, but look at the symmetry of its branches……… amazing!  Now guess where this tree grows?  You’re right, good guess……….. this particular species only grows on the island of Socotra, off the southern coast of Yemen.
Well anyway, there are hundreds of uses for the resin from trees, some of which are varnish, lacquer, turpentine, numerous medicines, chewing gum, incense, maple syrup and possibly Noah even used the pine pitch to waterproof the Ark.  

It all boils down to this; as we look around at God’s amazing creation, “we are without excuse!”  For a person not to believe in the only begotten Son of God………. “Has been judged already” (John 3:18).  That gentlemen… is terrifying.  Share with your friends to covenant today to make Jesus Christ the Lord of their life.

“He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me” (John 14:21)

Much Love in Christ,
(Galatians 2:20)

A memory verse for all of us is the one that Walt Henrichsen placed in Day 11 below.  In the parable of the Vine and the Branches, Jesus said,
“I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.  (John 15:5)
Do you believe that apart from Jesus you can do nothing?

Failing God’s Tests – Red Book Day 11
The purpose of these devotionals is to help you think Biblically

 Solomon said, “As a man thinks, so is he”

 1 – Romans 5:3-5

Men:  A great letter, written 20 years ago………… to think about for such a time as now!

 Facts of the Matter


Good Morning!

Life is unfair: The righteous suffer while evil men prevail. Justice is capricious as life appears to unfold in random fashion: Innocent children are victims of war and flood, while piggish dictators ravage their people for personal gain. Good people get cancer and the brutish often live in wealth and enjoy good health into old age.  (Ecc. 3:11;7:15; 8:14; Dan. 4:35; Job 11:7-9;33:13; Rom. 11:33,34)

One could reason: If God is good, then He is weak. Otherwise He would stop the suffering and injustice.  If He is strong and sovereign, then He is cruel or indifferent for allowing the carnage to continue. The book of Job however, shatters such thinking. 

Here is the essence of JobOne day Satan, in conversing with God, accuses Job of following God because He is blessing him. In order to demolish his argument, God gives Satan permission to take everything of Job’s except his life.  As Job loses his health, children, and resources, his “friends” argue that his suffering is due to his sin.  In the end, God vindicates Job, and restores everything twofold. 


#1  God reserves the right to use us for His glory as He so chooses:

 “But I have raised you up for this very purpose, that I might show you my power and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth…Would you discredit my justice?  Would you condemn me to justify yourself?”  (Ex. 9:16; Job 40:8)  (See Isa. 45:9; 64:8)

#2   Job demonstrates the fact that it is possible, amidst extreme suffering to maintain one’s faith:

 “At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said: ‘Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart.  The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.’”  (Job 1:20, 21)  (See Job 1:22; 13:15)

 #3  Job’s counselors wrongly assumed that his tribulations were related to sin; that righteous people always prosper, while suffering is always our punishment for engaging in evil:

“If [the righteous] obey and serve him, they will spend the rest of their days in prosperity and their years in contentment.”  (Job 36:11)

#4  Suffering deeply enhanced Job’s relationship with God:

“My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you.”  (Job 42:5)

#5  God owes us no explanation for His actions. He gave Job none.”

“Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.” (I Cor. 13:12)

This week, may you experience His grace, peace, and protection.

R. Dwight Hill

My wife sent me this poem by Seth Lewis of Ireland.
I thought these 3 stanzas were timely.

When all around my soul gives way
When towers fall and skies turn grey
My heart will still look up and say:
“Now we will see what God will do”

When enemies have gathered strong
A mighty throng to do me wrong
My soul can still break into song:
“Now we will see what God will do”

When friends have left me all alone
When every failure is my own
I rest upon the Cornerstone:
“Now we will see what God will do”

Great Closing Prayer from the Apostle Paul
(Read a few times then slowly reflect on the words. Very powerful and encouraging)

[May the Father] grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.  (Eph 3:16-19)

See ya tomorrow at the MIM half day teaching!