Weddings can be expensive, even if you do all kinds of resourceful things to keep the costs down. Couples can enjoy watching the video of their wedding once in a while, but they won't have to redo the wedding. Can you imagine if a husband or wife kept saying every few months, "I think we need to have another wedding. I want to make sure we're married." They don't need to do that because they are already married.

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    So Near, Yet So FarA lot of young women complain about a condition they find rampant in young men these days - commitment phobia. A guy is willing to show interest and he's willing to date a girl, charm her, agree with her, spend money on her, and they reach a level of mutual compatibility. Then, on the edge of commitment, he's gone.

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      Has there been a moment when you've taken Jesus' hand and made the commitment to live for him? Many church people have discovered Jesus, and they have increasingly grown to appreciate Him and even love Him.

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        He had waited a long time for this. He had loved this girl for a long time and she loved him. Now it was time to ask her to spend the rest of her life with him. He asked her to go with him on an old horse-drawn carriage ride along some beautiful mountain paths. In cahoots with the driver, he asked if they could stop to take a picture on a nearby footbridge - just out of sight, of course. Well, the driver was loving every minute of this. On that bridge, overlooking a picturesque little stream, he declared his lifetime love and he asked the woman he loves to become his wife. She was not surprised that he would ask someday, but this day she was overwhelmed. He awaited her answer and it was more beautiful than he could have ever scripted. She just said, "It would be my highest honor."

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          It can be hard for you to leave home for a long period of time, both hard on you and your family. Though you might have a nice meal together beforehand and then some special hugs and kisses at the airport, you still have to leave. It can be really tough, especially if you have children who are obviously hurting. You might manage to hold yourself together in their presence, but once you leave the tears may come. There is one thing that can make it okay: the parting is only temporary. You can be reunited.

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            The Difference Between Life and DeathA man facing a seemingly deadly situation, had a series of amazing interventions and the arrival of a rescuer just in the nick of time who was his only hope. Maybe that's not just a story from the news, but it's your story. If it's not your story, it could be. It's the story of millions whose only hope was a rescue...a spiritual rescue.

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                No matter how big you expect the Grand Canyon to be, it's bigger. It is an awesome, divine masterpiece. One big problem is that some people have this irresistible urge to venture out as far as possible on the rocks that overlook the canyon. Of course, one false step, and it's all over - actually, you're all over. In one case, two young men went to an overlook and one never came back. He ended up dead at the bottom of the canyon. It was all because he got too close to the edge.

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                    Behind the Happy FaceBehind many a happy face hides a hurting heart, and maybe that describes you. The happy face helps you live in a temporary denial of the pain inside, and it keeps other people from knowing a you that you're afraid they might not accept. Like the beach ball that you push farther and farther under the water, the deeper you bury it, the higher it's going to go when it's released. You can't bury the real you forever. As far as everyone knows, maybe you're the happy one or maybe even the hero, but you know that there's a wounded monster inside you. You're a wounded person with no place to bleed.

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                      Sometimes it's easy to feel like you're a bird locked up in a cage wanting to be free. Your cage may be your painful memories, a broken heart, or a broken dream.

                      Maybe you're caged in by an addiction, a habit, or some anger that is eating you up inside. It also might be depression or even suicidal thoughts that have you held in. There's a cover on that cage, whatever it is. It's dark in there and there isn't anything to sing about.

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                        There’s a little town in West Virginia situated in a long, narrow valley. The sun doesn't rise high enough to shine on that town until mid-morning, so it is dark for quite a while each day. There is a mountain that overlooks the valley, and from up there, the view is beautiful. When you can get above the valley, that panoramic view makes everything look different. If you're spending some time in your own valley right now, that may be something you need to remember.

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                          Maybe you have a "banged-up" life. You've been treated poorly, you've been made to feel that you never measure up or that you're a loser, people have undervalued you and passed you by, or maybe you've ended up pretty hard and angry inside.

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                            There are people that look great on the outside and even religious, but they have problems on the inside. It could be true of a marriage, a church, an organization, a leader, or maybe even you.

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                              Is there a vacancy in your heart? There are times when a hotel or motel has run out of rooms and there is no vacancy. You are turned down and you can't stay there.

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                                The Deepest Cry of the Human HeartIn our world today, there are so many people crying for love. So many human hearts are saying, "Somebody, somewhere, love me." For many who believe in God, there is still that awful vacuum. It's possible to believe in God, to do God's things, and to still miss the deep experience of His love. Without that love, the emptiness and loneliness in your heart is never satisfied - no matter how many human love relationships you experience.

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                                  Drinking lots of water is good for your health - drinking it at home, at work, and while traveling. When your cup or bottle is empty, you can just trade it for a full one.

                                  It's a great idea - taking what is empty and replacing it with what is full. You can also hand Jesus a life that is pretty empty, and He will gave you back a life that is amazingly full. He's done that for countless people, and He would love to do that for you. He said in John 10:10, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy" - that's the devil He's talking about - "I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full."

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                                      How to Be Safe in Dangerous TimesA tide table is a little tool that is smart to have if you are going to be spending time next to the ocean. It tells you what time high tide and low tide will be each day. That's good to know, especially if you're going to really set up shop for a while on the beach, which many people do. Some people bring their own little civilization to the beach with them: tarps, coolers, toys, and appliances. You'd think they were planning to live on the beach.

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                                        Flowers are always special, but they just seem even more special in the winter. When you see a vase of beautiful flowers, especially in the colder months, it's hard not to walk up and smell them. The truth is that if there's no smell, they're fake!

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