As we have come to the end of the week and wrapping up the end of the month of February let's take a moment to reflect on ALL that as transpire in our lives with this He knelt down on his knees . . . and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days. —Daniel 6:10
Read: Daniel 6:1-10
Bible in a Year: Numbers 17-19; Mark 6:30-56
While studying the book of Daniel, I was struck by how easily he could have avoided being thrown into the den of lions. Daniel’s jealous rivals in the government of Babylon laid a trap based on his consistent practice of daily prayer to God (Dan. 6:1-9). Daniel was fully aware of their plot and could have decided to pray privately for a month until things settled down. But that was not the kind of person he was.
“When Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem, he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days” (v.10). Daniel did not panic, nor bargain with God. Instead, he continued “just as he had done before” (v.10 niv). He was not intimidated by the pressure of persecution.
The lesson for me was the power of Daniel’s life of consistent devotion to the Lord. His strength came from God, whom Daniel wanted to please every day. When a crisis came, Daniel didn’t need to change his daily practice to meet it. He simply stayed committed to his God. —David McCasland
Father, I want to stand for You when persecution
comes as Daniel did. Give me that same bold
commitment to pray and not to be ashamed of
knowing You. Help me to live my faith publicly.
God empowers us to stand for Him as we bow to pray.
Here is a Team Challenge story brought to you by Jenna. Jenna shares her story of how she conquered crohn's through Team Challenge. While she managed to graduate, during her time at the Naval Academy she had 11 surgeries—and a few months after graduation, had ileostomy surgery, which was later reversed.
In late 2008, she was medically retired from the Navy since she couldn’t deploy with Crohn’s. It was extremely difficult to come to terms with this, especially since she had envisioned spending her life in service to her country.
While her dream got sidelined by disease, she has moved on to create a great life, of which Team Challenge is a huge part. Running is a key disease management tool for her, and Team Challenge is the perfect fit—meshing her love of running with helping to find cures. While she worried about not having fundraising experience, the Team Challenge system really helps newbies reach their goals. The training runs are a great chance to build teamwork and camaraderie. And whether you’re running your tenth half marathon or walking your first, the coaches are extremely helpful!
Here is our CCFA February 2015 Newsletter Issue Letter from our President & CEO
We would like to take a moment to thank our President Corporate Circle members for their continuous support of CCFA's mission. CCFA is able to provide education and support services to hundreds of thousands of IBD patients across the United States thanks to these partnerships.
We would like to extend our appreciation to the following companies who have joined us in the battle against Inflammatory Bowel Diseases: AbbVie, Actavis, Celgene, Covidien, Janssen, Pfizer, Prometheus, RedHill Biopharma, Salix, Shire, and Takeda.
Richard J. Geswell, CCFA President and CEO
Richard J. Geswell
President & CEO
Jenna's Story: Chasing a Different Dream
Jenna graduated from the Naval Academy despite undergoing 11 surgeries to address her Crohn's disease while she was there. Unfortunately, she was unable to deploy with IBD, so Jenna was medically retired from the Navy in 2008. Though her dream to serve her country was sidelined by IBD, Jenna eventually came to terms with this devastating blow and moved on to create a great life, of which Team Challenge is a huge part. Running is a key disease management tool for Jenna, and Team Challenge is the perfect fit – combining her love of running with her goal of helping to find cures.
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Partner with us to improve IBD research!
You're invited to join CCFA Partners, a revolutionary research network for individuals with Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis. It's easy to join – just create an account and complete a short online survey to get started! In return, you'll have access to these great features:
* Tools to better understand your health and what treatments and lifestyle choices work best for you.
* Participate in groundbreaking research.
* Influence IBD research by proposing, discussing, and voting on research questions.
Get started by clicking here. After you join, we'll ask you to complete an online survey every 6 months.
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Just for Teens
In response to the growing number of kids with IBD, we teamed up with the NASPGHAN Foundation for Children's Digestive Health and Nutrition, to launch "Just Like Me," a website for teens with IBD. The interactive site will feature stories and videos from teens with IBD as well as information on things that matter most to young people: school, dating, diet, and coping advice.
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You Can Make a Difference
We can – and must – conquer IBD. Your donation helps fund vital research and support programs at CCFA. Please donate today!
Healthy Living Tip
Though certain times of year may make people more susceptible to depression, overall depression affects between 15 and 35 percent of IBD patients. It is important for patients to discuss their emotions with their doctor. Learn more on our website or contact the IBD Help Center at email@example.com.
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Join us for our next CCFA Facebook Chat!
Join us on Wednesday February 25 at 5PM ET for our next CCFA Facebook Chat. The discussion will be hosted by Peter Higgins, MD, from the University of Michigan Health care System and the topic is "What's new and on the horizon in IBD Research". Look out for an invitation on our Facebook page. We're looking forward to your thoughts and questions!
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Managing the costs of IBD
Managing the costs of IBD can be a challenge. For help in this area, the NeedyMeds website has developed a page dedicated to people with Crohn's and colitis who are looking for financial assistance for their medication, less expensive doctors' visits and more. Visit them online or contact the IBD Help Center at firstname.lastname@example.org.
VISIT THE NEEDYMEDS SITE ►
CCFA Partnership with AGA & Janssen
AGA, CCFA, and Janssen are delighted to announce a new funding opportunity for young investigators and early career scientists looking to understand the role of epigenetics in the pathogenesis of IBD. The grant, which will be awarded in June 2015, is for $300,000 over a period of three years ($100,000 per year) and is inclusive of all indirects (up to 10%).
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Sign up for Camp Oasis!
Camper applications are live and our camps are filling up! Register today and secure your child's spot at Camp Oasis this summer. We try to ensure that every day brings opportunities to try new things, make memories with friends, and just have FUN. Visit our website for more information and to apply!
It's time to Take Steps & walk with us!
If you're reading this, you're just in time to register for an upcoming Spring Take Steps walk. We have 140 walks happening nationwide, so there's sure to be one in your community. We would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate the winner of our early registration contest – Jamie Mendelsohn from Orlando, FL will receive a hot-off-the-shelf Apple Watch when they are released in April! Thanks to everyone who registered early and entered our contest.
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In honor of Black History month I would like to Celebrate our culture by some of the poignant moments that cause for a Celebration in 2015 some of these moments may have cause you to think about some of the injustice that we are still facing today. So I want to honor my culture and my people for some of these Outstanding moment's in 2015 during this Black History Month with these videos. Here are some Historic highlights of 2015 in Honor of Black History month this is Black History in action.
John Legend & Common at The 2015 Golden Globes
John Legend & Common "Glory" LIVE at Edmund Pettus Bridge
David Oyelowo Prays On The Edmund Pettus Bridge
Prince at the 2015 Grammys-Black Lives Matters
Common, John Legend Live performence at Oscar 2015 - Glory
John Legend and Common’s ‘Glory’ Wins Best Original Song at 2015 Oscars | Acceptance Speech
So here we are gearing up to start the last new week of February with The Angel of the Lord [was] standing in the way. —Numbers 22:23
Read: Numbers 22:21-31
Bible in a Year: Numbers 7-8; Mark 4:21-41
Did you know that the microbes on just one of your hands outnumber all of the people on the earth? Or that millions of microbes could fit into the eye of a needle? These one-celled, living organisms are too small for us to see without a microscope, yet they live in the air, soil, water, and even in our bodies. We constantly interact with them, even though their world is completely beyond our senses.
The realities of the spiritual world are also often not visible to us humans, as the prophet Balaam discovered. He was trudging along the road with his two servants when his donkey “saw the Angel of the Lord standing in the way with His drawn sword in His hand” (Num. 22:23). To avoid the angel, the animal walked into a field, crushed Balaam’s foot against a wall, and lay down with Balaam still on her back. Balaam was angry and struck the donkey. He didn’t realize something supernatural was going on—until God opened his eyes (v.31).
The Bible tells us that a spiritual world does exist, and we may sometimes encounter realities from that realm—both good and bad (Heb. 13:2; Eph. 6:12). Because of this, we are encouraged to be watchful, prayerful, and prepared. Just as God rules the world we see, He also rules the unseen world.—Jennifer Benson Schuldt
Heavenly Father, help us to be strong in You and in the power of Your might. Open our eyes so that we may see the spiritual realities You have for us.
All that is seen and unseen is under God’s sovereign power.
We have made it to the end of the week YES! it's Friday and here is some words of wisdom to reflect on as we head into the weekend with Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. —Hebrews 12:1
Read: Hebrews 12:1-5
Bible in a Year: Leviticus 26-27; Mark 2
August 10, 1628, was a dark day in naval history. On that day the royal warship Vasa set out on her maiden voyage. After taking 2 years to build, being lavishly decorated and holding 64 cannons, the pride of the Swedish navy sank only one mile out to sea. What went wrong? The excessive load was too heavy to make her seaworthy. Excess weight pulled the Vasa to the bottom of the ocean.
The Christian life can also be weighed down by excess baggage. Encouraging us in our spiritual journey, the book of Hebrews says: “Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith” (12:1-2).
Like the lavishly decorated ship, we may project to others an impressive exterior. But if on the inside we are weighed down with sin, our perseverance can be impaired. There is a remedy, however. By relying on God’s guidance and the empowering of the Holy Spirit, our load can be lightened and our perseverance buoyant.
Forgiveness and grace are always available to the spiritual traveler.—Dennis Fisher
Father in heaven, too often I try to mask the burden and weight of sin in my life with the outward activities of the Christian life. Forgive me. Help me to set aside the things that keep me from running a good race.
Perseverance is as much about a strong won’t as a strong will.
INSIGHT: We are told in today’s passage to lay aside everything that hinders our daily walk of faith. The writer of Hebrews tells us that the example of “a cloud of witnesses” helps us to persevere (12:1). These witnesses are most likely the people listed in chapter 11 who walked in faith looking for the promises of God. We are also told to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus (12:2), who is the Author and Finisher of our faith. He is our example of patient perseverance, having endured the cross and the hostility of sinners, and He is now seated at God’s right hand (vv.2-3). With the saints behind us and Christ ahead of us we can press on.
I know that we have already Celebrate the New Year on January 1st but in most culture the have a different and Unique way that they celebrate New Year well today is known as Chinese New Year as the Chinese celebrate there New Year which is the Year of the Goat, May this year be prosperous for ALL. So I just want to wish every one a HAPPY CHINESE NEW YEAR! GONG XI FAT CAI
Singapore 2015 Fireworks New Year Countdown HD
Chinatown Singapore - Chinese New Year 2015 Street Light Up Ceremony - Fireworks
Chinatown Singapore - Chinese New Year 2015 Street Light Up Ceremony - F...
As we begin to start a New Week on this Presidents' Holiday let always remember to stay in the present and enjoy the moments so here is some wisdom to help us do that with No man can tame the tongue. —James 3:8
Read: James 3:1-12
Bible in a Year: Leviticus 19-20; Matthew 27:51-66
From Vietnamese pot-bellied pigs to Siberian foxes, humans have learned to tame wild animals. People enjoy teaching monkeys to “act” in commercials or training deer to eat out of their hands. As the apostle James put it, “Every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind” (3:7).
But there is something we cannot tame. All of us have trouble getting a little thing called the tongue under control. “No man can tame the tongue,” James tells us (v.8).
Why? Because while our words may be on the tip of our tongue, they originate from deep within us. “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” (Matt. 12:34). And thus the tongue can be used for both good and evil (James 3:9). Or, as scholar Peter Davids put it, “On the one hand, [the tongue] is very religious, but, on the other, it can be most profane.”
If we cannot tame this unruly tongue of ours, is it destined to be a daily problem for us, always prone to speak evil? (v.10). By God’s grace, no. We are not left to our own devices. The Lord will “set a guard” over my mouth; He will “keep watch over the door of my lips” (Ps. 141:3). He can tame the untamable.—Dave Branon
Lord, my mouth sometimes speaks words that don’t honor You. Thank You that by Your Spirit my untamed tongue can be brought under divine control. Please guard my mouth today.
To rule your tongue, let Christ rule in your heart.
INSIGHT: James’s letter is filled with practical wisdom that deals with responding to trials (ch.1), living out our faith (ch.2), taming the tongue (ch.3), interpersonal conflict (ch.4), and waiting on the Lord (ch.5). James is sometimes called “the Proverbs of the New Testament.”
Today when we woke up we woke up with the word LOVE on our minds, so I just want to take moment to reflect on this day and the word LOVE now I know there are so many meanings and definition on the word LOVE but what keeps coming to my mind is the ULTIMATE LOVE something that no other as done and that is the LOVE of JESUS CHRIST in John 3:16 it states, For, God so LOVE the word that he gave is only begotten son that who so ever believes in him shall not perish but have everlasting life now to me that sounds like the ULTIMATE LOVE to me. So as I take a moment to reflect on this Valentine's Day I am consistently reminded about what TRUE LOVE really is it's giving of yourself to and for others, because that's what JESUS did for ALL of us. So YES! I am DECLARING LOUDLY that I am in LOVE with JESUS! I just want too wish every one a HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY! Blessings and Love
WOW! What a week it has been but we have made it to the end of the week, we can breath a sy of relief it's FRIDAY! YES! let's take a moment to be grateful for ALL that we have gone through this week with Your testimonies also are my delight and my counselors. —Psalm 119:24
Read: Psalm 119:17-24
Bible in a Year: Leviticus 14; Matthew 26:51-75
The Word of God comes to us in many forms. Bible-centered preaching, Scripture reading, songs, study groups, and devotional articles bring to us the truths of God from Scripture. But we can’t overlook personal reading and studying either.
My heart has recently been touched by a careful, paragraph-by-paragraph study of Deuteronomy alongside the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5–7. Both passages contain codes of belief: The Ten Commandments (Deut. 5:6-21) and the Beatitudes (Matt. 5:3-12). Deuteronomy shows us the old covenant—the law God wanted His people to follow. In Matthew, Jesus shows us how He has come to fulfill that law and establish the principles of the new covenant, which frees us from the burden of the law.
The Holy Spirit comes alongside the Word of God to teach, empower, instruct, convict, and purify us. The result is understanding, repentance, renewal, and growth in Jesus. Theologian Philip Jacob Spener wrote: “The more at home the Word of God is among us, the more we will bring about faith and its fruits.” Let’s pray with the psalmist: “Open my eyes, that I may see wondrous things from Your law” so that we might live it out in our lives (Ps. 119:18).—David C. Egner
“Heavenly Father, we bow in Your presence. Let Your Word be our rule and guide, Your Spirit our teacher, and Your greater glory be our supreme concern, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.” —John R. W. Stott
When the Word of God is within us, it flows out from our life.
INSIGHT: Psalm 119 is a celebration of God’s law, broken down into 22 sections that follow the letters of the Hebrew alphabet. When we take a look at the individual sections, we see that the psalmist personally looks to God’s law as a source of life and guidance. In today’s passage, the psalmist celebrates God’s grace as he acknowledges that it is only through Him that he can keep His Word (v.17).
Here we GO we are starting off a New Week with A man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. —Genesis 2:24
Read: Genesis 2:18-25
Bible in a Year: Leviticus 6-7; Matthew 25:1-30
It was her yellow raincoat that caught my attention, and quickly I became increasingly interested in this cute freshman with long, brown hair. Soon I worked up my courage, interrupted Sue as she walked along reading a letter from a guy back home, and awkwardly asked her for a date. To my surprise, she said yes.
More than 4 decades later, Sue and I look back and laugh at our first uncomfortable meeting on that college campus—and marvel how God put a shy guy from Ohio together with a shy girl from Michigan. Through the years, we have faced innumerable crises together as we raised our family. We’ve negotiated parenting four kids, and we’ve struggled mightily with losing one of them. Problems big and small have tested our faith, yet we’ve stuck together. It took commitment from both of us and the grace of God. Today we rejoice in God’s design, spelled out in Genesis 2:24—to leave our parents, to be unified as man and wife, and to become united as one flesh. We cherish this amazing plan that has given us such a wonderful life together.
God’s design for marriage is beautiful. So we pray for married couples to sense how awesome it is to enjoy life together under the blessing of God’s loving guidance. —Dave Branon
Lord, the first thing You organized during society’s earliest days was marriage. Thank You for how You designed this amazing institution. Show me how to help strengthen others in their marriage relationship.
Marriage thrives in a climate of love, honor, and respect.
INSIGHT: In Genesis 1–2 we see two tellings of the same story. Genesis 1 gives a sweeping overview of the creation of the universe, including the creation of the first human beings (Gen. 1:26-28). Genesis 2, however, describes more specifically the distinctive relationship the man and woman have with their Creator and their roles in His world.
We have made it to FRIDAY! YES! let's take a moment to reflect on ALL that as happen this week with these words of wisdom Oh, how great is Your goodness, which You have laid up for those who fear You. —Psalm 31:19
Read: Genesis 45:4-8
Bible in a Year: Exodus 39-40; Matthew 23:23-39
In the weeks after my husband survived a heart attack, we often thanked God for sparing his life. I was asked many times during the next few months how I was doing. My answer was often a simple one: “Blessed. I feel blessed.”
Blessings, however, come in different sizes and shapes. In fact, we don’t always recognize them. Even when we are doing everything we think God wants us to do, we may still experience suffering. We are sometimes surprised that God does not answer the way we want or that His timing appears to be tardy.
We see this in Joseph’s life. From a human perspective, we would think that God had forgotten all about him. For more than a decade, Joseph experienced suffering. He was tossed in a pit, sold into slavery, falsely accused, unjustly put in prison. Finally, however, God’s faithfulness to him became evident to all as he was lifted up as a ruler of Egypt and saved many people from famine (Gen. 37–46). C. S. Lewis wrote: “When we lose one blessing, another is often most unexpectedly given in its place.”
God had always had His hand of blessing on Joseph, as He does for all who trust Him. “Oh, how great is Your goodness” (Ps. 31:19). —Cindy Hess Kasper
Lord, You love us with an extravagant love, but so often we don’t trust You in the crisis. Help us to learn and appreciate that You have everything we need—and so much more.
True happiness is knowing that God is good.
INSIGHT: Because of severe and widespread famine, Joseph’s brothers came to Egypt to buy grain to take home to feed their families (Gen. 42–45). Though Joseph recognized his brothers, they did not recognize him. It seems that from this point forward he set out to bring reconciliation to his broken family. Eventually, Joseph reveals himself to his brothers (45:4-8), forgives them, and promises to care for them (50:16-21). Joseph’s story is one of the great reconciliation stories of all time.
WOW! Guess What Day it is... It's GROUNDHOG DAY! Yes, today marks the day February 2, 2015 which is know to millions as Groundhog Day. Let's hope he/she didn't see it's shadow because if he/she did see it's shadow that means six months of Winter.
Here we are jump starting a New Week in the 2nd month of the New Year ALREADY! So here is some words of encouragement to help us in this New month. Oh, give thanks to the Lord! —1 Chronicles 16:8
Read: 1 Chronicles 16:7-14
Bible in a Year: Exodus 29-30; Matthew 21:23-46
According to a prominent Duke University Medical Center researcher, “If thankfulness were a drug, it would be the world’s best-selling product with [health benefits] for every major organ system.”
For some, being thankful means simply living with a sense of gratitude—taking time to recognize and focus on the things we have, instead of the things we wish we had. The Bible takes the idea of thankfulness to a deeper level. The act of giving thanks causes us to recognize the One who provides our blessings (James 1:17).
David knew that God was responsible for the safe delivery of the ark of the covenant in Jerusalem (1 Chron. 15:26). As a result, he penned a song of gratitude that centered on God instead of simply expressing his delight in an important event. The ballad began: “Oh, give thanks to the Lord! Call upon His name; make known His deeds among the peoples!” (16:8). David’s song went on to rejoice in God’s greatness, highlighting God’s salvation, creative power, and mercy (vv.25-36).
Today we can be truly thankful by worshiping the Giver instead of the gifts we enjoy. Focusing on the good things in our lives may benefit our bodies, but directing our thanks to God benefits our souls.
—Jennifer Benson Schuldt
Gratitude is our natural response to God’s grace.
Nothing so takes the heart out of a person as
ingratitude. Gratitude is not only the greatest of
virtues, but the parent of all the others. —Cicero
True thanksgiving emphasizes the Giver rather than the gifts.
INSIGHT: The ark of the covenant, the symbol of God’s covenant and presence with His people (Ex. 25:17-22), was neglected by Saul and left abandoned in the Benjamite town of Kirjath Jearim for 20 years (1 Sam. 7:2). After David became king, one of the first things he did was to bring the ark back to Jerusalem (1 Chron. 13:3-14; 15:1-28; 2 Sam. 6:1-3). To commemorate the ark’s return, David composed a song of worship celebrating God’s presence and exalting God’s power (1 Chron. 16:8-36). Asaph (v.7) was one of David’s three music directors (see 1 Chron. 25:1) who sounded the bronze cymbals as the ark was moved into Jerusalem (15:16-19).