We are getting close to wrapping up the month of June before we head into the 7th month of July but before we get ahead of ourselves lets start this week off with these words of wisdom. We must pay the most careful attention . . . so that we do not drift away. —Hebrews 2:1
At the end of one school semester, my wife and I picked up our daughter from her school 100 kilometers (60 miles) away. On our way back home we detoured to a nearby beach resort for snacks. While enjoying our time there, we watched the boats at the seashore. Usually they are anchored to prevent them from drifting away, but I noticed one boat drifting unhindered among the others—slowly and steadily making its way out to sea.
As we drove home, I reflected on the timely caution given to believers in the book of Hebrews: "We must pay the most careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away" (Heb. 2:1). We have good reason to stay close. The author of Hebrews says that while the Mosaic law was reliable and needed to be obeyed, the message of the Son of God is far superior. Our salvation is “so great” in Jesus that He shouldn’t be ignored (v. 3).
Drifting in our relationship with God is hardly noticeable at first; it happens gradually. However, spending time talking with Him in prayer and reading His Word, confessing our wrongs to Him, and interacting with other followers of Jesus can help us stay anchored in Him. As we connect with the Lord regularly, He will be faithful to sustain us, and we can avoid drifting away. —Lawrence Darmani
What do you know about Jesus that keeps you wanting to be near Him?
Share your thoughts at odb.org
To avoid drifting away from God, stay anchored to the Rock.
INSIGHT: The word translated “drift away” appears only once in the New Testament (Heb. 2:1). It means to flow from alongside, flow past, or slip away. It is used figuratively to illustrate the gradual giving up of one’s belief in the truth or a drifting away from belief. The writer of Hebrews uses this uncommon word to warn the Hebrews to pay careful attention to and not ignore the message and miracles of Jesus. They announce and confirm the salvation He brings. Dennis Moles
Here is the June Issue of CCFA Newsletter Of All the things that are taking place within the Organization Letter from our President & CEO
I hope your summer is off to a fantastic start! I'd like to use this month's note to remind you about our CCFA Partners initiative. If you haven't already, I encourage all of our patients to enroll in this important research project. All you need to do is complete an online survey every six months, and you will be making a valuable contribution towards finding cures. Find out more at www.ccfapartners.org.
President & CEO
May was an incredibly busy month for CCFA! First, on May 12, more than 100 patients and their loved ones visited congressional offices as part of IBD Day on the Hill—urging legislators to support the Patients' Access to Treatments Act, which would help limit medication costs. Read our June action alert for more information.
Then, on May 19, over 200 CCFA staff members helped raise awareness about IBD and gave back to the community by participating in World IBD Day. These activities also reached 1.2 million people online through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more. Check out our photo album for highlights!
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IBD and Fatherhood
Actor Benjamin King is known for his role as Pete Rooney, the father on Disney Channel's show "Liv and Maddie"—but in real life, he's also an IBD patient and father to two beautiful daughters. King was diagnosed with proctitis when he was 15-years-old and, in 1996, he was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis. After having an ileostomy for six months, his diagnosis was then changed to Crohn's disease in 2009.
In honor of Father's Day, we spoke with King about his disease journey, his children, and how having Crohn's has affected him as a father. Read his whole story here.
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Donate to CCFA
Your gift today will fund critical research on Crohn's and colitis—and provide support to people suffering from these debilitating diseases.
Race in Orange for IBD Cures
Whether you want to walk a 5k or do a mud run, you can now help support CCFA's mission with no fundraising commitment! Set your own goal—and watch the rewards roll in. Take the first step TODAY.
REGISTER TODAY ►
Learn About Biosimilars
While not yet available in the U.S., the FDA recently approved a biosimilar (a "similar" but not identical copy to another biologic therapy) for the treatment of Crohn's and colitis. Watch this webinar to learn more.
WATCH NOW ►
Summer Eating Tips
When the temperature goes up, the barbeque grills come out! Here are seven ways to manage your diet while enjoying a fun summertime activity.
LEARN MORE ►
CCFA provides a comprehensive database of studies, clinical trials and other research on Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. Below are two of the recently added studies:
A Phase 2, Multicenter, Randomized, Double-Blind, Parallel, Placebo-Controlled Study of LY3074828, an Anti-IL-23 Humanized Antibody, in Patients with Moderate-to-Severe Ulcerative Colitis
A Phase 1 Study of Autologous Mesenchymal Stem Cells in the Treatment of Perianal Fistulizing Crohn's disease
Deciding whether to participate in a clinical trial is an important personal decision, best made with a full understanding of the drug development process and a participant's role.
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Made it to the end of the week it's FRIDAY! YES! As we are enjoying the first week of Summer lets take a moment to reflect on these words of wisdom Read: Hebrews 13:1-6
Bible in a Year: Job 1-2; Acts 7:22-43
Never will I leave you. —Hebrews 13:5
Our hearts sank when we learned that our good friend Cindy had been diagnosed with cancer. Cindy was a vibrant person whose life blessed all who crossed her path. My wife and I rejoiced when she went into remission, but a few months later her cancer returned with a vengeance. In our minds she was too young to die. Her husband told me about her last hours. When she was weak and hardly able to talk, Cindy whispered to him, “Just be with me.” What she wanted more than anything in those dark moments was his loving presence.
The writer to the Hebrews comforted his readers by quoting Deuteronomy 31:6, where God told His people: “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you” (Heb. 13:5). In the darkest moments of life, the assurance of His loving presence gives us confidence that we are not alone. He gives us the grace to endure, the wisdom to know He is working, and the assurance that Christ can “empathize with our weaknesses” (4:15).
Together let’s embrace the blessing of His loving presence so we can confidently say, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid” (13:6). —Joe Stowell
Lord, thank You for the promise that You will never leave me. May the reality of Your constant supporting presence fill my heart with comfort, confidence, and courage.
During hard times, tough questions often arise such as “Where is God?” For help, read Out of the Ashes at discoveryseries.org/q0735
There is peace in the presence of God.
INSIGHT: The opening verses of Hebrews 13 are among the most practical in the New Testament. The chapter begins with a reminder that as followers of Christ we are to love one another (v. 1). The writer then challenges us to show hospitality to others (v. 2), followed by a strong call to give mercy, help, and kindness to those imprisoned and those who have been mistreated (v. 3). Verse 4 challenges us to sexual purity in marriage, while verse 5 calls believers to a contentment that can defeat covetousness. These practical statements find their culmination in the challenge to rest in the never-failing presence of God (vv. 5-6). Bill Crowder
It's been 2 months since the untimely Death of our PURPLE King Prince Rogers Nelson On April 21, 2016 at his Paisley Park compound Prince Transition between space and time, he would often said, "Time is a Tick" throughout his journey here on earth so on Today I just wanted to take a moment to reflect on these past 2 months. Let's begin "The Ride" Of the Purple Rollercoster this is a Lyric taken from one of his songs off the Album Crystal Ball
If U got the time, baby
I got the ride
If U got the time, baby
I got the ride
I feel like this is the question Prince was asking us ALL Do you have the time to take this ride on the PURPLE ROLLERCOSTER? and the answer was simply YES! These past 2 months have truly felt like I've been on a Rollercoster and then there are days when it feels like a BIG BLURR. I've often have said that it's going to hit me in stage's a today it has this is Stage 2, 2 months ago a couple of day after he pass I wrote a letter 2 my Purple Family & Friends called The Purple Letter PLEASE go back and read that Letter. Today as I reflect that it has been 2 months I am comforted NOT only in God that in due Season my Heart will heal but the GREATEST gift that Prince gave me was my Minnesota Family Sara Savoy, Jesse Jenkins, Dorothy Anthony, Marina, Jay Scott, Martin Homet, Ida, Donna, Hannah, Joshua, NPG HORNZ, Liv Warfield, Shelby J, Elisa Fiorillo, Shelia E and The E Family and countless of others I am eternal Grateful 2 have you ALL in my corner 4 Life. These past 2 months haven't been easy BUT with God on my side it will get easier. In closing I always say this, "This Cali Queen LOVES her Minnesota King!" I have LOVED every moment of Riding the PURPLE ROLLERCOSTER!!!
Hope everyone's Father's Day Weekend was Blessed just want to wish ALL the Father's a HAPPY FATHER'S DAY! As we celebrated our Father's this weekend we are kick starting our New Week on this FIRST Day of Summer with these words of encouragement Read: Psalm 68:7-10,19-20
Bible in a Year: Esther 1-2; Acts 5:1-21
Blessed be the Lord, who daily loads us with benefits, the God of our salvation! Selah. —Psalm 68:19 nkjv
The US Army's expression "hoo-ah" is a guttural response barked when troops voice approval. Its original meaning is lost to history, but some say it is derived from an old acronym HUA—Heard, Understood, and Acknowledged. I first heard the word in basic training.
Many years later it found its way into my vocabulary again when I began to meet on Wednesday mornings with a group of men to study the Scriptures. One morning one of the men—a former member of the 82nd Airborne Division—was reading one of the psalms and came to the notation selah that occurs throughout the psalms. Instead of reading “selah,” however, he growled hoo-ah, and that became our word for selah ever after.
No one knows for certain what selah actually means. Some say it is only a musical notation. It often appears after a truth that calls for a deep-seated, emotional response. In that sense hoo-ah works for me.
This morning I read Psalm 68:19: "Blessed be the Lord, who daily [day to day] loads us with benefits, the God of our salvation! Selah" (nkjv).
Imagine that! Every single morning God loads us up on His shoulders and carries us through the day. He is our salvation. Thus safe and secure in Him, we’ve no cause for worry or for fear. “Hoo-ah!” I say. —David Roper
Day by day and with each passing moment, strength I find to meet my trials here. Trusting in my Father's wise bestowment, I've no cause for worry or for fear. Lina Sandell Berg
Worship is giving God the best that He has given you. Oswald Chambers
INSIGHT: Psalm 68 is written from the historical context of the Hebrew worshipers. The psalmist declares the awesome power of God by calling Him the “One of Sinai” and the “God of Israel” (v. 8). By doing this he reminds the Hebrews of God’s faithfulness. Who is this God who goes out before the people? (v. 7). He is the God of Israel who spoke to Pharaoh through Moses and Aaron saying, “Let my people go” (Ex. 5:1), and He is the One of Sinai who gave them the Ten Commandments (Ex. 19-20). The psalmist reminds Israel that the God who heard their cries in Egypt still hears, and the One who provided in the desert still provides. Dennis Moles
Another week has come an gone we have made it to FRIDAY! YES! Thank You Jesus for bring us through another week with these word of wisdom Read: Nehemiah 8:1-8
Bible in a Year: Nehemiah 7-9; Acts 3
They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people understood what was being read. —Nehemiah 8:8
When the sun came up on the first day of the seventh month in 444 bc, Ezra started reading the law of Moses (what we know as the first five books of the Bible). Standing on a platform in front of the people in Jerusalem, he read it straight through for the next six hours.
Men, women, and children had gathered at the entrance to the city known as the Water Gate to observe the Festival of Trumpets—one of the feasts prescribed for them by God. As they listened, four reactions stand out.
They stood up in reverence for the Book of the Law (Neh. 8:5). They praised God by lifting their hands and saying “Amen.” They bowed down in humble worship (v. 6). Then they listened carefully as the Scriptures were both read and explained to them (v. 8). What an amazing day as the book that “the Lord had commanded for Israel” (v. 1) was read aloud inside Jerusalem’s newly rebuilt walls!
Ezra’s marathon reading session can remind us that God’s words to us are still meant to be a source of praise, worship, and learning. When we open the Bible and learn more about Christ, let’s praise God, worship Him, and seek to discover what He is saying to us now. —Dave Branon
Lord, thank You for this amazing book we call the Bible. Thank You for inspiring its creation by the writers You chose to pen its words. Thank You for preserving this book through the ages so we can learn Your people’s story and the good news of Your love.
The goal of Bible study is not just learning but living.
INSIGHT: Nehemiah was the “cupbearer to the king” (Neh. 1:11), a position of great trust and influence in ancient cultures. The cupbearer was responsible to serve wine at the king’s table and would be positioned at the king’s side as an advisor during times of deliberation. Since ancient monarchs were often assassinated by poison, the cupbearer was sometimes required to taste the wine before serving. The person who handled the king’s cup was important and needed to be trustworthy. Bill Crowder
We are getting ready to start a New Week off with these words of wisdom to help us get through this week with Read: Psalm 141
Bible in a Year: Ezra 6-8; John 21
Take control of what I say, O Lord, and guard my lips. —Psalm 141:3 (nlt)
When Rebecca stood on stage to speak at a conference, her first sentence into the microphone echoed around the room. It was a bit unsettling for her to hear her own words come back at her, and she had to adjust to the faulty sound system and try to ignore the echo of every word she spoke.
Imagine what it would be like to hear everything we say repeated! It wouldn’t be so bad to hear ourselves repeat "I love you" or "I was wrong" or “Thank You, Lord” or "I'm praying for you." But not all of our words are beautiful or gentle or kind. What about those angry outbursts or demeaning comments that no one wants to hear once, let alone twice—those words that we would really rather take back?
Like the psalmist David, we long to have the Lord’s control over our words. He prayed, "Take control of what I say, O Lord, and guard my lips” (Ps. 141:3 nlt). And thankfully, the Lord wants to do that. He can help us control what we say. He can guard our lips.
As we learn to adjust to our own sound system by paying careful attention to what we say and praying about the words we speak, the Lord will patiently teach us and even empower us to have self-control. And best of all, He forgives us when we fail and is pleased with our desire for His help. —Anne Cetas
Can you think of something you said recently that you would like to take back? Ask the Lord to help you become aware of careless words.
Part of self-control is mouth-control.
INSIGHT: This psalm is filled with meaningful prayers for protection and can be an encouragement for all of us. Because we live in a world cursed by sin, we need prayer for protection from the damage we can inflict on others in attitude, speech, and behavior (vv. 3-4) as well as protection from those who plan evil against us (vv. 9-10). Dennis Fisher
Here is Actor Benjamin King sharing his story about IBD. Fathers play a critical role in the growth of their children. Fathers are role models, playmates, teachers, and so much more. But when you are a father with a debilitating digestive disease, balancing your illness with taking care of your children can be difficult.
Actor Benjamin King is known for his role as Pete Rooney, the father on Disney Channel’s show "Liv and Maddie." He’s also an IBD patient and a dad in real life to two beautiful daughters. King was diagnosed with proctitis when he was 15 years old. In 1996, he was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis. After having an ileostomy for six months, in 2009 King’s diagnosis was changed to Crohn’s disease.
In observance of Fathers’ Day, we had the opportunity to speak with King about his disease journey, his children, and how having Crohn’s disease has affected him as a father.
How did having Crohn’s impact you and your wife’s decision to have children?
Having IBD did not affect my decision [to have children] at all. I always wanted to be a dad. My wife and I knew from very early on that we would start a family together.
How has having a chronic illness affected you as a father?
There are days where my energy is below what I’d want it to be. I lucked out marrying my wife, for many reasons, but also in that she lets me get the rest that I crave. I try to give her breaks when I can, but there’s just no comparison - she bears a much heavier load because my stores of energy are often very sacked. As far as my kids are concerned, they know that I have this condition, they know that sometimes I hurt or I need to rest or I can’t eat what they eat. That said, my relationship with each of my girls feels very full, and active. Could I be more active? Of course. Even at their young ages, 10 and 9, they are really understanding and sympathetic kids. We find ways to have fun, even if it’s in the quiet of our home.
What is the hardest part of having Crohn’s and being a father?
Though I’m in remission and have been on the right program for several years now, there is that lingering possibility that things can go south and I could end up in the hospital, taken away from my family. For me, that’s the worst part of this deal. I know what it’s like to see the fear in my kids’ faces, and no parent wants to feel responsible for that. But it also teaches them that life is delicate and not to take for granted the really good days. Our girls have an understanding of how fortunate we are to get to enjoy so many amazing life experiences together - set visits, vacations, holidays with friends and family, and Disneyland. We do what we can to provide as many happy, long lasting memories for them and all of us as a family. But some days are just tough - and there’s no telling when those days are going to come.
Do your daughters understand what your disease is? How did you explain it to them?
They know that I have a disease that affects me in lots of different ways. I don’t know that I fully understand what this disease is, so I am sure they can’t possibly grasp what it is. They do know that a piece of me needed to be taken out, a piece that was very sick, and that I’m healthier because of it. They don’t understand all the details yet, but I’m comfortable sharing my full story with them when the time is right.
What advice do you have for other dads with Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, or other chronic illnesses?
Keep it as real as you can, starting with yourself. Pretending you’re fine when you’re not fine can lead to stress and things spiral from there. I’ve learned that lesson. If you’re married, or are raising your kids with a partner, it’s important to communicate when you’re feeling unwell, which obviously also applies if you have a cold or flu. My wife took the “in sickness and in health” part of our vows to heart, as did I, but she’s unfortunately had to deal with that from early on in our marriage.
If you’re fortunate enough to have that type of commitment with someone, I suggest leaning on them during the tough times. You’ll find ways to make it up to them on the good days.
Another week has come an gone and we have made it to FRIDAY! Yes, the week has come to an end with these words of wisdom Read: Revelation 2:12-17
Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 34-36; John 19:1-22
I will also give that person a white stone with a new name written on it. —Revelation 2:17
She called herself a worrier, but when her child was hurt in an accident, she learned how to escape that restricting label. As her child was recovering, she met each week with friends to talk and pray, asking God for help and healing. Through the months as she turned her fears and concerns into prayer, she realized that she was changing from being a worrier to a prayer warrior. She sensed that the Lord was giving her a new name. Her identity in Christ was deepening through the struggle of unwanted heartache.
In Jesus’s letter to the church at Pergamum, the Lord promises to give to the faithful a white stone with a new name on it (Rev. 2:17). Biblical commentators have debated over the meaning, but most agree that this white stone points to our freedom in Christ. In biblical times, juries in a court of law used a white stone for a not-guilty verdict and a black stone for guilty. A white stone also gained the bearer entrance into such events as banquets; likewise, those who receive God’s white stone are welcomed to the heavenly feast. Jesus’s death brings us freedom and new life—and a new name.
What new name do you think God might give to you? —Amy Boucher Pye
May I live out my new identity, sharing Your love and joy. Show me how You have made me into a new creation.
Share your story on odb.org
Followers of Christ have a brand-new identity.
INSIGHT: In the book of Revelation, the Lord Jesus is referred to as having a “sharp, double-edged sword” (1:16; 2:12). In chapter one, John described this sword as coming out of Jesus’s mouth (v. 16). In today’s passage, Jesus is seen using this sword to fight against and slay His enemies (2:16). In a later vision, John saw Jesus as the “Faithful and True” rider of a white horse (19:11), whose name is “the Word of God,” using the “sharp sword” to conquer the nations (vv. 13-15). Christ, the Word of God (John 1:1-4), will come again to judge this world and will rule it “with an iron scepter” (Rev. 19:11-15). Sim Kay Tee
On April 21, 2016 our Purple King Transition into heaven it was very devastating not only to me but to the millions of Supports ALL over the world, so on what would have been his 58th Birthday this is what I would like to share.
Dear Prince, I know that U don't Celebrate U're B-Day so I'm just going 2 Celebrate the many memories U have given to me and the millions that LOVE U!
We have enter into the 6th month of the New Year it's JUNE ALREADY! WHAT! Time is moving as we start this New Week hear are so words of wisdom to help you get through the rest of the week. Read: Psalm 119:71-75
Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 25-27; John 16
I know, Lord, that your laws are righteous, and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me. —Psalm 119:75
During World War II my dad served with the US Army in the South Pacific. During that time Dad rejected any idea of religion, saying, “I don’t need a crutch.” Yet the day came when his attitude toward spiritual things would change forever. Mom had gone into labor with their third child, and my brother and I went to bed with the excitement of soon seeing our new brother or sister. When I got out of bed the next morning, I excitedly asked Dad, “Is it a boy or a girl?” He replied, “It was a little girl but she was born dead.” We began to weep together at our loss.
For the first time, Dad took his broken heart to Jesus in prayer. At that moment he felt an overwhelming sense of peace and comfort from God, though his daughter would always be irreplaceable. Soon he began to take an interest in the Bible and continued to pray to the One who was healing his broken heart. His faith grew through the years. He became a strong follower of Jesus—serving Him as a Bible-study teacher and a leader in his church.
Jesus is not a crutch for the weak. He is the source of new spiritual life! When we’re broken, He can make us new and whole (Ps. 119:75). —Dennis Fisher
What is on your heart that you need to talk with God about? Bring Him your brokenness and ask Him to make you whole.
Brokenness can lead to wholeness.
INSIGHT: A commonly understood characteristic of Psalm 119, the longest chapter in the Bible, is that it celebrates the goodness and usefulness of God’s commandments. Referring to these laws by various names, the author suggests that God’s commands are the very core of how life is meant to be lived. The thought is simple yet intriguing—God’s laws help us to live in the way that we were created and intended to live. They are not restrictive; they are freeing. That helps us understand why the psalmist had such a high regard of God’s laws. J.R. Hudberg
So here we are at the end of the week YES! It's FRIDAY! I'm so EXCITED! about it but we have also ended the week in the 6th month of the New Year YES! we have already entered into the month of June time is moving so as we end the week let's remember these words of wisdom. Read: Isaiah 40:27-31
Bible in a Year: 2 Chronicles 19-20; John 13:21-38
Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. —Isaiah 40:31
On a beautiful, sunny day, I was walking in a park and feeling very weary in spirit. It wasn’t just one thing weighing me down—it seemed to be everything. When I stopped to sit on a bench, I noticed a small plaque placed there in loving memory of a “devoted husband, father, brother, and friend.” Also on the plaque were these words, “But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint” (Isa. 40:31 esv).
Those familiar words came to me as a personal touch from the Lord. Weariness—whether physical, emotional, or spiritual—comes to us all. Isaiah reminds us that although we become tired, the Lord, the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth “will not grow tired or weary” (v. 28). How easily I had forgotten that in every situation “[the Lord] gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak” (v. 29).
What’s it like on your journey today? If fatigue has caused you to forget God’s presence and power, why not pause and recall His promise. “Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength” (v. 31). Here. Now. Right where we are. —David McCasland
Lord, thank You that You do not grow weary. Give me the strength to face whatever situation I am in today.
Share this prayer from our Facebook page: Facebook.com/ourdailybread.
When life's struggles make you weary, find strength in the Lord.
INSIGHT: After prophesying that God would use the Assyrians (Isa. 1-38) and Babylonians (Isa. 39) to punish Judah, Isaiah comforts Judah with the hope of future deliverance and restoration (Isa. 40-66). In chapter 40, Isaiah speaks of God’s sovereignty, majesty, and loving providential care. Addressing the Jews’ sense of abandonment (v. 27), Isaiah assures them that God has the power to restore them and will indeed do so. Isaiah reminds them that the everlasting, omnipotent, Creator God is the source of their strength (vv. 28-29) and calls on these despondent Jews to persevere in their faith, to rise to a new level of commitment, and to wait for God to bring His promises to fulfillment (vv. 30-31). Sim Kay Tee