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JEM-PRECIOUS STONES
(Issue #23 -- Symphony of Music -- November 2004)


Listen... Can you hear that? Itís the sound of praise being lifted up to The Father! What a marvelous combination of melody and harmony He must hear! At any moment, I can only imagine the beauty of hearts of praise and worship blending in a chorus of unfettered adoration for our Lord! Join us now, as we sing our little song or praise. Add your voice to ours, and, as we grow louder and fuller Ė richer and more diverse Ė we will, together, become an intricate part of His Symphony of Music

In His Service,
Matt

TABLE OF CONTENTS

ACROSTIC FOR NOVEMBER
BIRTHDAY GREETING
INSPIRATIONAL THOUGHT
POINTS TO PONDER
QUOTE OF THE MONTH
HEART SONG
A MOMENT OF 'HA HA'
CHALLENGE OF THE MONTH
RECIPE OF THE MONTH
QUICK TIP OF THE MONTH
CRAFT OF THE MONTH
SKIPPING STONES
BIBLE QUIZ
CHECK IT OUT!
JEM'S PUZZLER OF THE MONTH



ACROSTIC FOR NOVEMBER
By: Barbara Lea Campbell

Nature cries
Out in triumphant song
Voicing its praise to the Lord.
Eternally singing of His
Might and worth.
But what of us? We
Exist to glorify Him -- so let's
Raise our voices and praise!

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BIRTHDAY GREETING

We praise You, Lord, for life. May we never take it for granted. Bless those celebrating their birthdays this month. May their love for You grow each day as they see You working in their lives. In Jesus' name. Amen.

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INSPIRATIONAL THOUGHT
By: Gwen Tweedy

The Singer

I stand clean, fresh and ready to go!
I wait expectantly, almost upon bended knee, anticipating the praises I shall sing to my KING.
And I am ready -- every fiber of my whole being is prepared.
I have spent all day in great elation for this moment
When I shall go out into the world and make public my praises and worship to God.
I am, in fact, trembling with the knowledge that soon I can let it go for the whole world to know,
How I feel about my Coming KING!
My voice is primed, my lips are opened and ready to sing and say the first words of exaltation when instructed to do so.
And then I realize that it is not going to happen!
At least not upon this night!
As the seconds tick into moments
And I finally come to the realization that a snag has developed with my wheels and I must stay where I am for these hours of rehearsal.
But does that stop me?
Do I stop Praising? Do I stop worshipping?
No! Emphatically NO!
It just goes higher and higher!
Until my Lord hears
And answers me with an, "Amen" and, "Well done my good and faithful servant!"
And I am blessed!

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POINTS TO PONDER
By: Denise Imbody

Isaiah 55
9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.
10 For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater:
11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
12 For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.

Just a quick little "Point to Ponder" isn't it fascinating how creation takes time to praise our Lord?! Think about it for a minute...the wind blowing through the leaves, a bubbling brook as it moves along its way, the birds singing a song loud and clear, the crickets, frogs, waterfalls, the list could just go on...if you listen closely it is like you are hearing a praise song to our Lord...and what a beautiful sound it is.

Now, if the VERY earth that He created takes time to praise Him...how much more should we, His children, take the time? Praise Him in the morning, afternoon, or evening...praise Him with your words in a poem, or a song...it doesn't matter how you praise Him, as long as you take the time to praise Him!

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QUOTE OF THE MONTH


Cause when You move in me
It's like a symphony
The timeless melody
That soothes my soul
Though silent I can tell
That You're alive and well
Cause I can feel You move
In me
--Michael W. Smith

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HEART SONG
By: Barbara Lea Campbell

The story goes that Matt Redman's pastor challenged his church congregation to worship for one month without music. He feared that they were being swayed by the sound and rhythm of the music and not really thinking about what it meant. As a result of that 30 day ban on music, Redman wrote the song "Heart of Worship." In the chorus he says, "I'm coming back to the heart of worship and it's all about You, it's all about You, Jesus." And it is!

Music is one of the most awesome ways to express our feelings to the Lord, but if we are not careful we can get lost in the music and forget the one to whom we are singing.

I encourage you to take the time to stop and read the words to the songs you sing... even those you know by heart and have sung forever! Think about the words... consider what they are saying and why. Don't just sing them without conviction because they sound good. Heartless singing is nothing more than clanging gongs to the Lord.... vain repetitions.

The Lord wants us to sing and make music to Him. That is apparent in the Word:

"Sing aloud unto God our strength: make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob." Ps. 81:1

"Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing." Ps. 100:2

"My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed: I will sing and give praise." Ps. 57:7

"Sing forth the honor of his name: make his praise glorious." Ps. 66:2

"O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation." Ps. 95:1

"Is any merry? let him sing psalms." James 5:13b

"Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord" Eph. 5:19

"I will sing of mercy and judgment: unto thee, O LORD, will I sing." Ps. 101:1

In fact, He gives you the song to sing ... "And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD." Ps. 40:3 ... and that song is Himself "The LORD is my strength and song," Ex. 15:2a and can be found in the Word "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord." Col. 3:16

So there is no doubt that the Lord wants us to sing to Him. But we need to remember that the Lord looks at the inner man.. at the heart. He is not listening for someone with perfect pitch... the right breathing... the best sound. There is nothing wrong with being a good singer, but God is listening to your heart.

Mr. Willie sang in the choir as I was growing up.. he was a friend's grandfather and was old as long as I can remember. His voice wasn't all that good. In fact, he was known to hit a sour note on a regular basis. But Mr. Willie loved the Lord and he sang out strong! I have no doubt his off-tune singing was some of the sweetest music the Lord heard.

So sing to the Lord with all your heart -- think about the words you sing to Him -- mean them -- present them to Him as an offering of praise.

"O sing unto the LORD a new song: sing unto the LORD, all the earth." Ps. 96:1

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A MOMENT OF 'HA HA'

Larry the Cucumber: (Singing) But it's a musical
Bob the Tomato: Yeah, I know, but you don't have to sing every line in a musical. Talking is okay too.
--Veggie Tales

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CHALLENGE OF THE MONTH

We really should be getting into Godís word, as much as we possibly can. We would like to encourage you with a challenge each month, to memorize a portion of Scripture. So, we will provide a passage, and hope that you will take the time to study it daily. If you are already doing this on your own, that is great--we just thought with prayer, and making it a bit easier for some folks, that we could help those who may not be doing this yet. All passages will be from the King James Version of the Bible. We do not mind other versions, and you can study it in whichever version you like. We have chosen KJV, because it is public domain. We pray that you will hide His word in your heart.

Psalm 104
33 I will sing unto the LORD as long as I live: I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.
34 My meditation of him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the LORD.

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RECIPE OF THE MONTH
Submitted by: Julie Babudro

For holiday parties and gatherings, or any snack time!

Tex Mex Dip

Serve with round corn dip chips and bell pepper slices

Layer in a large casserole or lasagne dish:

1/4 or 1/2 inch thick layer of Neufchatel (low fat) Cream Cheese
Next, spread on 1 can chopped green chilies
Add onto this a blend of 1 can refried beans and 1/3 cup your heat of salsa
Finish with a topping of grated cheddar, any style you prefer.
You can garnish with chopped green onion, black olive slices, fresh tomato--customize to your liking. This dish is "guaranteed" a hit!

Bake at 350 or so, until hot, about 15 minutes.

God be with your gatherings!

Do you have an original recipe that you would like to share? Click here to submit it!

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QUICK TIP OF THE MONTH
Submitted by: Barbara Lea Campbell

Measuring Honey:
Measuring honey with a spoon is easy but getting it all off the spoon is another matter--so first rub the spoon with margarine, or cooking spray.

Do you have an original Quick Tip that you would like to share? Click here to submit it!

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CRAFT OF THE MONTH
Submitted by: Denise Imbody

Thankful Wreath

Materials Needed:
paper plates
construction paper
scissors
glue
markers
Index Cards

SIDE NOTE: If you are doing this craft with little ones, you will want to have steps 1 and 2 prepared ahead of time...and you'll need to help them with step 3.

What to do
1. Cut a circle out from the middle of the plate to form a ring.

2. Cut different shaped leaves out of the construction paper, in all different colors.

3. Have the child write 1 thing they are thankful for on each leaf (each thing being a different one of course). :)

4. Glue the leaves onto the paper plate, overlapping, but be careful not to cover up what they wrote.

5. On the Index Card write...

I AM THANKFUL FOR...

and glue it to the inside of the top of the plate, or the inside bottom..whichever you prefer. :)

There you have it, a Thanksgiving Wreath Decoration full of what your child is thankful for...hang it up for all to see, and enjoy!

***If you have an original recipe, quick tip, or craft, that you would like to share with us, please send it in with your first and last name, and your email address to Precious_Stones@JEMMinistries.org. If we use it, you will get full credit, but please know that due to the number of contributions, and other concerns, we will not be able to use all submissions.***

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SKIPPING STONES
(A word of encouragement)
By: Denise Imbody

I know this issue is primarily about music, but I really felt lead to write a short little article on encouragement, and thankfulness to our Lord about this past year events.

I know we had a lot of hard times this year, with it being an election year, and it seemed that even Christians were divided on who should become the next president...but I have to say, that I, for one, am VERY glad that so so so many folks went out and voted for their very first time this election year.

I don't really want to turn this into a GREAT big article on politics, because honestly, I don't understand it all...but I am glad that I am at least trying to understand, and with prayer, the Lord helps me figure out what the candidates are actually talking about at times. :)

I guess all I really want to say, before I pray, is this...it is encouraging to me to see how many stood for what they believe is right, moral, and that so many took the time to vote this year. If we continue in prayer, and stand firm, the Lord is going to turn His ear toward us, and answer our prayers.

Heavenly Father,
Thank You for all that You have done for us, but even more, thank You for who You are. We love You, and we know that with You all things are possible. Help us to continue to seek Your face in all we do, and please help us to stand firm, in Jesus' name, amen.

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BIBLE QUIZ

In this section, you will find five questions each month. Scripture references will sometimes be provided, but other times you will have to seek out the answers. We pray this will help you to get to know God's Word more.

Music Makers

1. What stringed instruments did John hear in his vision of the heavenly throne?

2. Who is mentioned as the father of those who play the harp and organ?

3. What prophetess played a timbrel and led the women of Israel in a victory song after the Red Sea incident?

4. At the dedication of Solomon's temple, 120 priests played what instruments?

5. When the foundation for the second temple was laid, the priest played trumpets. What did the Levites play?

Click here for the answers

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CHECK IT OUT!

In this section we will share, and recommend our favorite website, book, movie, or any other favorite things we can think of to share with you. These are all highly recommended.

CD of the Month: WOW Hits 2005
Recommended by: Denise Imbody

WOW Hits 2005 by Various Artists

Even though I normally get ALL the WOW Worship CD's that come out, I don't usually buy the WOW Hits. We recently bought, however, WOW Hits 2005, and I just LOVE it! It has a lot of the songs I was wanting to have in my collection...and didn't necessarily want to by EVERY individual CD they are all on. This is a great CD, and I highly recommend it. It has hits such as Never Alone by Barlowgirl, Grace Like Rain by Todd Agnew, When I Fall by Rachael Lampa, Sea of Faces by Kutless, and the list just goes on and on. I know this is a CD that you'll want to have in your collection...enjoy!

Book of the Month: The Sisterchicks Series
Recommended by: Barbara Lea Campbell

The Sisterchicks Series by Robin Jones Gunn

I have looked at the first book in this series several times and thought it looked silly. Well, it is.. but a good silly. The Sisterchicks books are the creative work of Robin Jones Gunn and are so fun and yet very insightful. In each book, Gunn focuses on 2 friends and their individual lives, as well as their friendship with each other. The friends always take a journey... not only a physical one, but a spiritual one also. There are three books in the series so far.... Sisterchicks on the Loose, Sisterchicks do the Hula and Sisterchicks in Sombreros. Sisterchicks Down Under is being released in 2005. If you want some easy, fun reading that encourages and uplifts, then the Sisterchicks series is for you! You can read more at the Sisterchicks site
--
http://www.sisterchicks.com

Idea of the Month: Thankful List
Recommended by: Denise Imbody

Before giving thanks, and eating our Thanksgiving dinner, it is a tradition that everyone list 10 things they are thankful for...even guest that we have over need to have this list (and I always tell them before hand so they can be prepared). It is so touching to take the time to do this, and it is fascinating to hear each person's list.

Now, you can make your list as long, or as short as you like...but why not take the time to begin a new tradition in your home, if this is not one that is already incorporated?! :) Thanksgiving is a time for GIVING THANKS...but please do not think it is only limited to this time of year, for we can give thanks all year round...have fun, and Happy Thanksgiving!

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JEM'S PUZZLER OF THE MONTH

In this section you might find a word search, An unscramble the words, OR any kind of word puzzle. We hope you will have fun with it! ‹

ALPHABET GAME CATEGORY--SYMPHONY OF MUSIC

We like to play the "Alphabet Game" sometimes on our chat list. We think of different categories, and take turns coming up with the next letter according to the category. I thought it might be fun to try it as a JEM Puzzler. I know we can't "take turns" with it, but I figured you could have fun trying it on your own.

Since this month's issue is devoted to "Symphony of Music" I thought it would be fun for you to come up with either song titles, lines, or words in a song that relate to praising our Father in Heaven. Let's give it a try...and I will have a list of answers, in the answer section, if you need some help...remember that if your answers do not match mine...that doesn't mean you are wrong..my list is to just help get you started, if you are stuck. :)

Click here for the answers

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Please feel free to pass this along! If you would like to be added to the JEM-Precious Stones mailing list, send an e-mail to Precious_Stones@JEMMinistries.org requesting to be added in the message field. If you are not a member of the JEM community, and you would like your name removed from this mailing list, please send a message to the above address, and request removal in the body of the e-mail.

Please e-mail us with any comments, suggestions, or feedback, at: Precious_Stones@JEMMinistries.org. We would love to hear from you! We would also love it if you would visit our JEM website, at: http://www.JEMMinistries.org As we continue with this monthly E-zine, you will also find a link to past issues there.

May God bless and keep you throughout this month! May He smile upon you, and show You mercy all of your days--and may You find peace in Him, and through Him! In Jesus' name, Amen






Answers for this month's BIBLE QUIZ:

1. Harps - Revelation 14:2-3

2. Jubal - Genesis 4:21

3. Miriam - Exodus 15:20 - 21

4. Trumpets -- 2 Chronicles 5:11 - 14

5. Cymbals -- Nehemiah 12:35 - 36

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Answers for JEM'S PUZZLER OF THE MONTH:

Above All
Blessed Be the Name of the Lord
Celebrate Jesus Celebrate
Days of Elijah
Emanuel. God With Us
Father, I Adore You
Give Us Clean Hands
Hallelujah, Your Love Makes Me Sing
I Can Only Imagine
Jesus, Lover of My Soul
Knock, Knock, Knock
Lift Jesus Higher
My Praise
None Like You
O How I Love Jesus
Praise Him
In the QUIET place (line from song)
Red Letter Day
Sanctuary
There is Power in the Blood
Unto Thee O Lord
Victory in Jesus
Washed in the Blood
How eXcellent, how eXcellent, how eXcellent is Your Name Oh Lord (LOL..sorry that is all I could come up with for "X")
You Are Holy (Prince of Peace)
Blow the trumpet in Zion (line from the song..and actual title)

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