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Attempting to obey God and follow Jesus Christ our Lord

Archive for February 22, 2013

New injectable hydrogel encourages regeneration and improves functionality after a heart attack | KurzweilAI

 

New injectable hydrogel encourages regeneration and improves functionality after a heart attack | KurzweilAI.

University of California, San Diego bioengineers havedemonstrated in a study in pigs that a new injectable hydrogel can repair damage from heart attacks, help the heart grow new tissue and blood vessels, and get the heart moving closer to how a healthy heart should.

The gel is injected through a catheter without requiring surgery or general anesthesia — a less invasive procedure for patients.

There are an estimated 785,000 new heart attack cases in the United States each year, with no established treatment for repairing the resulting damage to cardiac tissue.

Lead researcher Karen Christman, a professor in the Department of Bioengineering at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering, said the gel forms a scaffold in damaged areas of the heart, encouraging new cell growth and repair. Because the gel is made from heart tissue taken from pigs, the damaged heart responds positively, creating a harmonious environment for rebuilding, rather than setting off a chain of adverse immune system defenses.

“While more people today are initially surviving heart attacks, many will eventually go into heart failure,” said Christman.  “Our data show that this hydrogel can increase cardiac muscle and reduce scar tissue in the region damaged by the heart attack, which prevents heart failure. These results suggest this may be a novel minimally invasive therapy to prevent heart failure after a heart attack in humans.” Read the rest at New injectable hydrogel encourages regeneration and improves functionality after a heart attack | KurzweilAI.

 

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The End Time: Heavenly minded is good

The End Time: Heavenly minded is good.

In John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress we read of a moment when two pilgrims on their way to the celestial city (heaven) are conversing,

One of the two pilgrims says to the other, “When do you find yourself in the most wholesome and most vigorous spiritual state?” To which the other pilgrim says, “When I think of the place to which I am going.” 

Bunyan understood that. When he wrote that he understood that heaven on your mind changes your life. The living in a joyous anticipation of the presence of God changes everything.

Sadly, I suppose most Christians are more like the cynical Mark Twain who when told about heaven remarked flippantly, “You take heaven, I’d rather go to Bermuda.” Read the rest at The End Time: Heavenly minded is good.


John Bunyan and Pilgrim’s Progress

American Minute with Bill Federer

FEB. 22 – John Bunyan and Pilgrim’s Progress

John Bunyan was a poor, unskilled tinker by trade.In 1657, at age 29, Bunyan became a Baptist minister and was arrested for having religious meetings, preaching without a license from the government.

John Bunyan wrote in aRelation of My Imprisonment:

“Upon the 12th of…November 1660…the justice…issued out his warrant to take me…as if we that were to meet together…to do some fearful business, to the destruction of the country; when alas! the constable, when he came in, found us only with our Bibles in our hands, ready to speak and hear the word of God…

So I was taken and forced to depart…But before I went away, I spake some few words of counsel and encouragement to the people, declaring to them…that they would not be discouraged, for it was a mercy to suffer upon so good account…we suffer as Christians…better be the persecuted, than the persecutors.”

John Bunyan was imprisoned for 12 years, during which time he tried to support his family by making shoelaces.

He wrote The Pilgrim’s Progress, published FEBRUARY 18, 1678.

It was an allegory of a pilgrim, named Christian, who fled from the City of Destruction and was directed by Evangelist to follow the narrow path, overcoming temptations, depressions, deceptions, and persecutions till he reached the Celestial City of Zion.

Pilgrim’s Progress was translated into over 100 languages and, after the Bible, was the world’s best-seller for hundreds of years.

It was found in nearly every colonial New England home, along with the Bible and Fox’s Book of Martyrs.

Benjamin Franklin wrote in hisAutobiography:

“My old favorite author, Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress…has been translated into most of the languages of Europe, and suppose it has been more generally read than any other book, except perhaps the Bible.”

It inspired many subsequent books, such as Mark Twain‘sInnocents Abroad or the New Pilgrim’s Progress (1869); C.S. Lewis’ Pilgrim’s Regress (1933); and L. Frank Baum‘sWizard of Oz (1900).

Pilgrim’s Progress began:

“As I walked through the wilderness of this world, I lighted on a certain place where was a den, and I laid me down in that place to sleep: and, as I slept, I dreamed a dream. I dreamed, and behold, I saw a man clothed with rags, standing in a certain place, with his face from his own house, a book in his hand, and a great burden upon his back.

I looked, and saw him open the book, and read therein; and, as he read, he wept, and trembled; and, not being able longer to contain, he brake out with a lamentable cry, saying, What shall I do?”

Later in the book, John Bunyan wrote:

“Christian ran thus till he came at a place somewhat ascending, and upon that place stood a cross…So I saw in my dream, that just as Christian came up with the cross, his burden loosed from off his shoulders, and fell from off his back.”

Further in Pilgrim’s Progress is written:

“Then said Christian, You make me afraid, but whither shall I fly to be safe?…To go back is nothing but death; to go forward is fear of death, and life-everlasting beyond it. I will yet go forward…

Frighted with the sight of the lions…Christian to himself again, These beasts range in the night for their prey; and if they should meet with me in the dark…how should I escape being by them torn in pieces?…

He lift up his eyes, and behold there was a very stately palace before him…He entered into a very narrow passage…he espied two lions in the way…

The porter at the lodge…perceiving that Christian made a halt as if he would go back, cried unto him, saying, Is thy strength so small? Fear not the lions, for they are chained, and are placed there for trial of faith where it is, and for discovery of those that had none. Keep in the midst of the path, and no hurt shall come unto thee…

He went on, trembling for fear of the lions, but taking good heed to the directions of the porter; he heard them roar, but they did him no harm…”

John Bunyan continued:

“But now, in this Valley of Humiliation, poor Christian was hard put to it…a foul fiend coming over the field to meet him; his name is Apollyon. Then did Christian begin to be afraid, and to cast in his mind whether to go back or to stand his ground.

But he considered again that he had no armour for his back; and therefore thought that to turn the back to him might give him the greater advantage with ease to pierce him with his darts. Therefore he resolved to venture and stand his ground…

The monster was hideous to behold; he was clothed with scales…wings like a dragon, feet like a bear, and out of his belly came fire and smoke…

Apollyon straddled quite over the whole breadth of the way, and said…prepare thyself to die; for I swear by my infernal den, that thou shalt go no further; here will I spill thy soul. And with that he threw a flaming dart at his breast; but Christian had a shield in his hand, with which he caught it…

Apollyon as fast made at him, throwing darts as thick as hail; by the which, notwithstanding all that Christian could do to avoid it, Apollyon wounded him in his head, his hand, and foot…

This sore combat lasted for above half a day, even till Christian was almost quite spent; for you must know that Christian, by reason of his wounds, must needs grow weaker and weaker…

Christian’s sword flew out of his hand. Then said Apollyon, I am sure of thee now. And with that he had almost pressed him to death, so that Christian began to despair of life;

but as God would have it, while Apollyon was fetching of his last blow, thereby to make a full end of this good man, Christian nimbly stretched out his hand for his sword, and caught it, saying, Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy; when I fall I shall arise; and with that gave him a deadly thrust, which made him give back…

And with that Apollyon spread forth his dragon’s wings, and sped him away, that Christian for a season saw him no more…

A more unequal match can hardly be, –
Christian must fight an angel; but you see,
The valiant man by handling Sword and Shield,
Doth make him, though a Dragon, quit the field.”

Ben Franklin wrote in hisAutobiography:

“From a child I was fond of reading, and all the little money that came into my hands was ever laid out in books. Pleased with the Pilgrim’s Progress, my first collection was of John Bunyan’s works in separate little volumes.”

President Theodore Roosevelt stated while laying the cornerstone of the office building of the House of Representatives, April 14, 1906:

“In Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress you may recall the description of the man with the muck-rake, the man who could look no way but downward, with the muck-rake in his hand, who was offered a celestial crown for his muck-rake, but who would neither look up nor regard the crown he was offered, but continued to rake to himself the filth of the floor.”

President Grover Cleveland had memorized Pilgrim’s Progress as a youth, and commented:

“I have always felt that my training as a minister’s son has been more valuable to me as a strengthening influence than any other incident in life.”

President Ronald Reagan greeted Australia’s Prime Minister, June 30, 1981, referring to John Bunyan:

“Robert Louis Stevenson wrote, ‘We are all travelers in what John Bunyan calls the wilderness of this world. And the best that we find in our travels is an honest friend – they keep us worthy of ourselves.'”

President Franklin Roosevelt referred to John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress on January 19, 1936:

“When Theodore Roosevelt died, the Secretary of his class at Harvard, in sending classmates a notice of his passing, added this quotation from ‘Pilgrim’s Progress':

‘My sword I give to him that shall succeed me in my pilgrimage, and my courage and skill to him that can get it. My marks and scars I carry with me, to be a witness for me that I have fought His battles who now will be my rewarder.'”
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House of the Stone Breakers

Stained glass at St John the Baptist's Anglica...

Stained glass at St John the Baptist’s Anglican Church http://www.stjohnsashfield.org.au, Ashfield, New South Wales. Illustrates Jesus’ description of himself “I am the Good Shepherd” (from the Gospel of John, chapter 10, verse 11). This version of the image shows the detail of his face. The memorial window is also captioned: “To the Glory of God and in Loving Memory of William Wright. Died 6th November, 1932. Aged 70 Yrs.” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Kerry Mauldin

First day in the villages!!
We went to Ramnagar to see construction on church by Fairlland
Assembly of God.  Church is coming up well, and plaque looks nice, but
in Oct. when we shared and gave for church, a villager gave double the
land and so instead of a small church, this is coming up much
bigger–seat 150-200.  Pray they have enough to complete it.  A joy
was the woman, Elishamma that came to Christ and we were there when
she held hands with her husband and he also accepted Christ.
Both are in church and growing stronger!

Cherlagoraram Village- We sit in front of simple home of people who
break stones for 4 rs each and the whole village is stone breakers.
The first believer in the village is Inkula, now 60 and has 6
children.  They have all come to Christ and are now about 30 believers
of 1000 in village, but growing and good spirit!!
They spoke up quickly that 1 of 10 stones broken belong to God.  All
children have come and “Naga Raju”, “snake King, now called Daniel, 25
was the last to come 2 years ago.
It was blessing to hear and see a large family sitting on the mat in
front of the house sharing how God has changed their life since coming
to know Him.  The debts and misery are gone since they have learned to
tithe and give…  Daily, the whole family sits and reads the Word of
God together.  The younger ones whoa can read, read to all.
We look where they have been building a stone church the past 5 years,
but have no more money.  Publicly we stood and committed among
themselves, one by one to give 24,000Rupees, then we matched it and a
nice church will be complete.

The joy is this pastor, Paul, who came 9 years ago was only 20, but
has led them and 3 other villages to Christ.  These are the only
churches in the villages.
Paul, we helped with his first village church in RA Nagar in 2011.
Dr. Mast and I pulled up early AM in Feb 2011 and no one met us and
small concrete stone church.  Today, we visit and the church regularly
has 80 members that totally overflow the church and is growing so so
much!!

6 took baptism today.  One woman who was Laxmmama and is now “Saramma”
stepped in for baptism.  She is about 26 and the power of God hit her
and she shook and cried as she went under.  Then she shared how 1
month ago, she worshipped hannamun, the monkey.  She got a tumor and
had no hope, but a brilliant light filled the room she was in and a
man stood there that she came to know was Jesus.  She said “all I
could do was shout HALLALEUJAH and shake”.  Jesus healed her last
month and now she follows in baptism.
She stood with her 2 small 2 year old boys, tears streaming down her
face and thanking the Lord for all He is doing in her life!!  We named
her Sarramma.

Christ is revealing himself to many in this way.  Miracles are
happening and so many are coming to Christ!
Another man, Ramalu, 28, rode motorcycle, wanted baptism.  After he
took baptism, his name is now Phillip.  He shared this one year since
accepting Christ, everything he does is prospering, even as Phillip
kept being blessed and prospering everywhere he went…

We had an easier day today.  JUst 4 villages after the drive from
Hyderabad.!!  Our team of Jeff Oaks, Melody, “superwoman” Mauldin and
myself!!  We are blessed and so so thankful for your prayers!!

With so much thanks, prayers and joy to serve the Lord,

Kerry, Melody and Jeff


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