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Apples of Gold

Apples of Gold contains articles to help you draw closer to God and grow in your worship of Him.  It is our desire that these truly will be words "fitly spoken" to encourage you in your walk with the Lord.

The Holidays Are Upon Us

Rob Stroup
Written by Rob Stroup

Thanksgiving and Christmas are just around the corner, as you can tell if you walk into the local grocery store. Retailers look forward to these days more than anyone else, as they project profits during the last quarter of the year. Although it is a very busy and sometimes exhausting season, I look forward to the time of celebration. Do you eagerly anticipate these days?

Read more: The Holidays Are Upon Us

Killing the Root (Bitterness)

Rob Stroup
Written by Rob Stroup

Remember the sickle? I loved using one when I was a young teen. I could swing it and clear a path almost a foot deep into thick weeds with one sweep of my arm. In my enthusiasm, sometimes I would swing the cut weeds all the way up into the air, only to have the wind blow them down all over my head, neck and back! It only took a time or two before I learned to be a little less aggressive with the sickle! One hot summer day I remember being on my hands and knees, crawling through our garden between the vegetables. Green beans and corn, as I recall, were the six inch plants in rows on each side of me. My job was to pull up anything that was growing but was not going to be a stalk of corn or a bean plant. “Mom, wouldn’t it be easier to just take our sickle and chop them down? It would take a lot less time than pulling them each up by hand!” As I recall, my mother’s response was, “No, we have to get the roots out of the ground so they will die. If we leave the roots in the ground, the weed will come right back and we will have to do it all over again.” The sickle was not sufficient to get rid of the weeds completely.

Read more: Killing the Root (Bitterness)


Rob Stroup
Written by Rob Stroup

Even when surrounded by a crowd, we can feel lonely. Sooner or later, each of us will experience loneliness. We might have a trial that no one else understands, or we may be physically alone. Whatever the circumstances that precipitate the emotion, God has a remedy for the sorrow! The greatest consolation to our loneliness is the fact that God is with us.

Read more: Loneliness

Hallway Conversations

Rob Stroup
Written by Rob Stroup

Pastor Hurst and I were meeting briefly the other day when he made this comment, “It is not the meetings in the office that concern me most, but the times I get stopped in the hallway that I really pray for the Lord to give me the right response.”

Read more: Hallway Conversations

Help ... God's Way

Rob Stroup
Written by Rob Stroup

2 Kings 5:10-12 And Elisha sent a messenger unto him, saying, Go and wash in Jordan seven times, and thy flesh shall come again to thee, and thou shalt be clean. But Naaman was wroth, and went away, and said, Behold, I thought, He will surely come out to me, and stand, and call on the name of the LORD his God, and strike his hand over the place, and recover the leper. Are not Abana and Pharpar, rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? may I not wash in them, and be clean? So he turned and went away in a rage.

Read more: Help ... God's Way