Titanic

Robert Ballard was a man on a quest. He wanted to find the Titanic. And on September 1, 1985, he discovered the sunken ship in the North Atlantic, more than 350 miles off the coast of Newfoundland.

I got chills when I read his account for the first time. He sent down that bright probe light and saw that sight more than two miles below the surface of those icy waters. “My first direct view of Titanic lasted less than two minutes, but the stark sight of her immense black hull towering above the ocean floor will remain forever ingrained in my memory. My lifelong dream was to find this great ship and during the past 13 years the quest for her has dominated my life.”

What quest is dominating your life today? What do you dream about when you are laying in bed late at night? What would you do if you could do anything? What is the carrot that keeps you going?

God created us with passion. Ask him to give you a passion worth committing your life to.

The Rushmore Report: The Power of a Godly Touch

Oh the power of a godly touch. Have you known it? Remember the doctor who treated you or the teacher who dried your tears? Haven’t you known the power of a godly touch? Can’t we offer the same? Perhaps you already do. You can use your hands to pray over the sick and minister to the weak. There are other ways to extend the power of a godly touch. Let me explain.

If you aren’t touching those who suffer personally, your hands can write them notes, dial the phone to make some calls, or you can use your hands to bake them a cake. Each time you do any of these things, you are extending the power of a godly touch.

But many of us forget how significant one touch can be. Or we fear saying the wrong thing, so we say nothing at all. Aren’t we glad Jesus didn’t make the same mistake? Keep in mind the perspective of the lepers in the ancient world. They aren’t picky or finicky. They’re just lonely – yearning for a godly touch. Jesus touched the untouchables of the world. Will you do the same?

Never underestimate the power of a godly touch.

About the Author

Max Lucado is a best-selling author and the senior pastor of Oak Hills Church in San Antonio.

Televised Watergate Hearings Begin – 44 Years Ago Today

It’s hard to believe it’s been 44 years. On this day in 1973, a U.S. Senate committee headed by Senator James “Sam” Erwin of North Carolina began televised hearings on the June 1972 break-in at the Watergate office complex in Washington, D.C. The Senate Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activities was investigating the incident at which police had arrested five men for the unlawful entry to the Democratic National Committee headquarters, where they installed illegal wiretapping equipment.

Information obtained from the wiretaps would have been useful to those who wanted to assist President Richard Nixon in obtaining a second term in office. Erwin’s folksy approach, combined with his extensive knowledge of the law and the Constitution, made him an ideal choice to head the controversial investigation. The Senate hearings gripped the nation, especially when former White House counsel John Dean testified that Nixon himself had been aware of the crime and subsequent cover-up. Nixon resigned the presidency on August 3, 1974, rather than face impeachment and removal from office.

Here’s the lesson. No man is above the law. And when we break the law – man’s or God’s – there is always a price to pay. From Richard Nixon we know this: we choose our actions, but not the consequences.

The Greatest Gift

At the tender age of 20, Solomon was king of Israel. His kingdom was so respected that Pharaoh, the Egyptian monarch, formed an alliance with the new king by giving Solomon his daughter in marriage. Because Solomon understood that his youth and inexperience could topple the kingdom, he cried out to God for help, asking for divine approval and guidance. Solomon was so sincere that he offered 1,000 burnt offerings to God. Then the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream with an incredible offer. “Ask for anything you want.”

What would you have asked for?

As you probably know, Solomon asked for wisdom. Wisdom is the ability to discern and apply what you know. And the foundation for wisdom is Scripture. Samuel Chadwick said it best: “No man is uneducated who knows the Bible, and no one is wise who is ignorant of its teachings.”

Let me ask you again. If God came to you with the same offer – ask for anything you want – how would you respond?

Dark Clouds

There is a really odd verse in the Bible. You may have skipped over it a hundred times. It’s found in 1 Kings, a book you probably have never read with much intent.

“Then spoke Solomon, ‘The Lord spoke from a dark cloud'” (1 Kings 8:12).

I’m all about God speaking through the beauty of nature. I see God in sunrise, sunset, birds chipping, rivers flowing, and snow falling.

But dark clouds?

Here’s the message. When you and I are traversing easy ground, God is there, to be sure. But it is during the storms of life that we need him the most. And he is always there.

Are you going through a storm right now? Are the clouds gathering overhead? When your world gets darkest and the sun is not shining, take heart. The voice of God is about to speak.

Shoe

Jeff MacNelly used to write an old comic strip called Shoe. In one of the comic strips, Shoe is pitching in a baseball game. In a conference on the mound, his catcher said, “You’ve got to have faith in your curve ball.”

Shoe grumbled, “It’s easy for him to say. When it comes to believing in myself, I’m an agnostic.”

Unfortunately, that is the way a lot of people think about themselves.

I love the words of Charles Schwab. “When a man has put a limit on what he will do, he has put a limit on what he can do.”

Let me suggest you follow the advice of Jack Canfield. In his book, The Success Principles, he recommends the following four steps to transform limiting beliefs into empowering beliefs. First, identify a limiting belief that you want to change. Second, determine how the belief limits you. Third, decide how you want to be, act, or feel. Finally, create a turnaround statement that affirms or gives you permission to be, act, or feel this new way.

Leadership expert John Maxwell says it like this. “Practice a small discipline daily in a specific area of your life.”

Great advice! Don’t be an agnostic. Don’t be the Shoe.

The Rushmore Report: What Steve Harvey Told His Audience when He Thought the Cameras Were Off

Steve Harvey is looking to help people get in touch with the Holy Spirit to live their best lives, with his latest book, Jump: Take the Leap of Faith to Achieve Your Life of Abundance. The comedian and #1 New York Times bestselling author has written about love and success. Now he is talking about God and his personal faith. It’s perfect for anyone wanting more out of life.

“Steve beautifully and thoughtfully explains what faith is and how it can work miracles in our daily lives. He also talks in-depth about the power of human imagination and how we can use it to make our dreams come true,” the description reads. “As God inspires us to build and create a larger vision for our lives, Steve shows us that when we combine our inherent power with God’s divine plan, we can each achieve anything.”

Harvey, who has overcome homelessness and several failed marriages, gets candid about the trials and tests he had to overcome. The inspiration for Harvey’s book came from the Family Feud host speaking to his studio audience after a show last year, thinking the cameras had stopped rolling.

While it was not aired on television, Harvey’s team captured a special moment where the host encouraged his audience by letting them know that God wanted them to live their lives more abundantly.

All they had to do was take a leap of faith by jumping.

“Your Bible says your gift will make room for you – your gift, not your education,” he told his audience. “If you don’t use your gift, that education will only take you so far. I know a lot of people that have degrees and don’t even use them. It’s your gift that matters.”

While Harvey admitted that the process of taking this leap of faith can be painful, he urged his audience to trust in God who has never left them.

“You cannot name one single thing God has not gotten you through. If He’s not gotten you through it, He’s getting you through it now. Your Bible says He came so you can live abundantly. If I were you, I would jump because that’s the only way to get to that abundant life. You’ve got to jump.”

The Rushmore Report: Five Things Mom Wants for Mother’s Day

Before you send the flowers or make the phone call, and before you send her a gift card to her favorite department store, let me offer some insight as to what most moms really want for Mother’s Day. Expressions from your heart are what touch her. So here are five things your mom probably wants for Mother’s Day, but likely won’t tell you herself.

1. A piece of your past

The older a mom gets, the more she realizes that time is fleeting and days gone by are precious. Give her a cherished memory in the form of an old photo of you that she might have forgotten, a framed menu from the restaurant where the two of you shared a special memory, or a childhood drawing you came across that you never gave her.

2. A project from your heart

Anyone can walk into a store and purchase a gift card. You can even buy them online without leaving your house. But a project from the heart goes a lot further with mom. Consider putting together a scrapbook of memories of mom, drawing or painting her a picture, or writing a poem. Tell her how she has blessed your life.

3. The gift of your presence

Has it been awhile since you’ve seen your mom? Taking the time to visit will go further than anything else you can give her. But rather than surprise her, let her know you plan to visit soon so she can experience the anticipation of your arrival as a gift, as well. If the distance is too great to drive to see her that day, make plans for when you will see her and gift her with the news and the date to put on her calendar.

4. Your spiritual well-being

Moms worry about their children’s physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being. Assure your mom that you are doing well by telling her what you’ve been learning spiritually. If you find that you don’t have much to tell her about spiritual growth in your life, make a point of reading or studying something she’d be thrilled to hear about.

5. Your prayers

Assuming your mom was a spiritual mentor in your life, it would thrill her soul to know you are praying for her health, her comfort, and her joy. Even better, pray with her. And if your mom is not a believer, or not one who is vocal about her faith, your private prayers for her may be the best gift you can give her on Mother’s Day.

About the Author

Cindi McMenamin is an award-winning writer and national speaker. She is author of When Women Walk Alone and Letting God Meet Your Emotional Needs. She is also a pastor’s wife and director of women’s ministries at her church.

The Rushmore Report: Kim Kardashian – ‘I Would Have Gone to Heaven’

Kim Kardashian says she’s certain she would have gone to heaven if she had been killed during the high profile robbery that left her shaken in Paris last October. In her first interview in six months, on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Kardashian recounted the horrific experience of being bound and gagged while her jewelry was stolen at gunpoint. In the interview, Kardashian opened up about her prayer life and readiness to meet God.

The 36-year-old entertainer and television personality shed tears on the show as she recalled praying for the lives of her rap mogul husband, Kanye West, and their two children as she sorted through thoughts of her life coming to a sudden end.

“Automatically, your stomach drops, it’s a feeling you just can’t describe,” she said, visibly emotional while remembering the ordeal. “I said a prayer. I said, ‘I know I’m going to heaven. I hope my kids and my husband are okay.'”

The ordeal has changed Kardashian, who admitted that she was materialistic before millions of dollars in jewelry were stolen from her. For two years, the men who robbed her were following her on social media where she often flaunted her jewelry and possessions.

Now, she insists, she’s a better person and mother who has a different outlook on life.

“I was definitely materialistic before, not that there’s anything bad with having things and working hard to get those things, and I’m really proud of everyone around me that’s successful,” she said. “But I’m so happy that my kids get this me and that this is who I’m raising my kids to be. I don’t care to show off the way I used to.”

While Kardashian has admitted to showing off her possessions, she has also showcased her faith in the past. Before marrying her rapper husband, she was pictured attending services at Life Change Community Church in Agoura Hills, California, and previously spoke about starting her own Bible study.

“On my way to church with the girls,” she tweeted before attending a service on New Year’s Day in January 2012. “I want to start a Bible study group with my friends.”

About the Author

Christine Thomasos is a frequent writer for The Christian Post.

Garry Kasparov’s Lost Chess Match

It happened 20 years ago today. The impossible took place. Garry Kasparov, widely recognized as the greatest chess player who ever lived, lost. The grandmaster resigned before official “checkmate” could take place. Even more amazing than his loss was the fact that Kasparov’s opponent had never won a single chess tournament in his life, nor was he world-ranked. He had never won a single trophy or beaten another chess champion.

Still, he beat Garry Kasparov on May 10, 1997.

Who was it? He went by the name of Deep Blue. And “he” was actually more of an “it.” Deep Blue was a supercomputer designed by IBM. It was able to calculate over 100 billion moves in three minutes.

Kasparov’s resignation to Deep Blue was his first ever. And for its victory, the computer was donated to the Smithsonian Institute. Kasparov retired from competitive chess in 2005, and is now a writer and political activist.

I can sort of relate. I used to play chess – a lot. In high school, I won the school championship and the Houston High School Chess Championship. I loved to play chess. But I didn’t win every match. Nobody does. The thing is, man is fallible. We make mistakes. We fall short.

But that’s okay. That’s where grace enters the picture. Where man falls short, God shows up.