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      Nurturing people in the image of God since 1868.                                                                          POB 397/520 Dry Creek Rd./Smithville, TN

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JUST A LITTLE PUSH

A very wealthy man once bought a huge ranch out in Arizona, and he invited some of his closest associates out to see it. In an effort to show off his spread he took his group on an all day tour of the ranch. He explained how on his 15,000 acres he had cattle, horses and various other livestock grazing as far as the eye could see. He talked about the mountains and rivers and grasslands that he was now the proud owner of. At the end of the day he took the group back to his house. The house was just as spectacular as the scenery. Behind the house was the largest swimming pool you have ever seen. However, this gigantic swimming pool was filled with alligators.

The rich owner explained, "I value courage more than anything else. Courage is what made me a billionaire. In fact, I think that courage is such powerful virtues that if anybody is courageous enough to jump in that pool, swim through those alligators and make it to the other side, I'll give them anything they want, anything — my house, my land, my money."

Of course, everybody laughed at the absurd challenge and proceeded to follow the owner into the house for dinner... when they suddenly heard a loud splash. Turning around they saw this guy swimming for his life across the pool, thrashing at the water, as the alligators swarmed after him. After several death defying seconds, the man made it, unharmed to the other side.

The rich host was absolutely amazed at what he had just seen, but stuck to his promise. He said, "You are indeed a man of courage and I will stick to my word. What do you want? You can have anything — my house, my land, my money — just tell me what you want and it is yours." The swimmer, breathing heavily, looked up at the host and said, "I just want to know one thing — who pushed me into that pool?"

Do you need someone to give you a little push to live the Christian life? It seems, at times, that life is like trying to swim the length of a swimming pool filled with alligators. When we try to live our lives in a way that completely leaves God out of the picture we're just asking for trouble. Why not exert a little courage and stand up for those things that are right and get more involved? Need a little push?

For His Cause,
Tim Woodward