BIRTH OF JESUS

 

SELF STUDY & DEVOTIONAL GUIDE

 

By Rev. Dr. Jerry Schmoyer  jerry@schmoyer.net 

http://india.christiantrainingonline.org/

 

You need a Bible, a notebook and a pen to do these devotions.  Each lesson you will be asked to write some things down.  These will help you learn and remember.  They will be important for you to keep for future use and reference, and will be invaluable if you some day teach the birth of Jesus.

 

If you want to send me your answers I would be glad to read them and offer comments or suggestions that might help you.  If you don’t send them to me that is fine as well.  You can write me at jerry@schmoyer.net.  If you have any questions or prayer requests please feel free to write to me.

 

 

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By Jerry Schmoyer

 

 

DAY 1

Luke 1:6  Both of them (Zechariah and Elizabeth) were upright in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commandments and regulations blamelessly.

READ Luke 1:5-9

MEDITATE:  If both Zechariah and Elizabeth were “upright” and “blameless” why did God withhold blessing them with children?   What blessing does it seem God is withholding from you?  Why may God be withholding it?

PRAY

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CONFESSION of sin:  MATTHEW 6:12,14  Is there anyone against whom you hold a grudge?  Is there anyone  you hate?   Do you  justify a wrong attitude toward another?

PRAISE/THANKS

REQUESTS – OTHERS

REQUESTS – SELF

Faith & patience for withheld blessing in your life

 

 

 

DAY 2

Luke 1:13 “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard.

READ Luke 1:10-14

MEDITATE:  How long do you think Zachariah and Elizabeth prayed for a child?  Had they stopped praying?  What have YOU given up praying for?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: MATTHEW  6:33  Is there anything in which you have failed to put God first?  Do any of the following in any way interfere with your surrender and service to God: ambition, pleasures, loved ones, friendships, desire for recognition, money, plans?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

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REQUESTS – SELF

Pray again for things you’ve given up praying for

 

 

 

 

DAY 3

Luke 1:17       And he will …turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous

READ Luke 1:15-17

MEDITATE:  What does it mean to “turn the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous”?  Do you have God’s wisdom?  In what areas do you need more of it?

PRAY

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CONFESSION of sin: MARK 16:15  Have you failed to seek the lost for Christ?  Have you failed to witness consistently with your mouth for the Lord  Jesus Christ? Has your life shown to the lost the Lord Jesus?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

Thank God for all the ways you are ‘highly favored.’

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Ask God for wisdom in areas which you have need of it

 

DAY 4

Luke 1:25  “The Lord has done this for me,” she said. “In these days he has shown his favor.”

READ Luke 1:18-25

MEDITATE:  Why did Zechariah doubt God’s promise?  What promises of God are you now doubting (be honest)?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: JOHN 13:35  Are you secretly pleased over the misfortunes of another?   Are you secretly annoyed over the accomplishments or advancements of another?  Are there people whom you deliberately slight?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Claim promises from God which you have been doubting

 

 

 

 

DAY 5

Luke 1:28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”

READ Luke 1:26-29

MEDITATE:  In what ways was Mary “highly favored”?  What did she do to deserve that?  In what ways are you highly favored by God?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: ACTS 20:35  Have you robbed God by withholding His due of time, talents, or treasure? Have you given less than He wants you to give to God’s work? Have you failed  to support mission work in prayer or offerings?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

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Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Ask God to make you more aware of and appreciative of His blessings to you

 

DAY 6

Luke 1:30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God.

READ Luke 1:30-33

MEDITATE:  God told Mary she would give birth to the Messiah.  He didn’t ask her opinion.  Why?  What is God asking you to do without asking your opinion?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: I  CORINTHIANS 4:2  Are you undependable so that you cannot be trusted with responsibilities in God’s work? Are you allowing  your emotions to be stirred for things of the Lord but not following through?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

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Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Submit to God’s will in what He is asking of you, even if your opinion would differ

 

 

 

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DAY 7

Luke 1:37 For nothing is impossible with God.”

READ Luke 1:34-38

MEDITATE:  Write this verse on a piece of paper and put it where you’ll see it all day.  What in your life are you tempted to feel is impossible with God?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: I CORINTHIANS 6:19-20  Are you in any way careless with your body?  Do you fail to care for it as the temple of the Holy Spirit?  Are you guilty of intemperance in eating or drinking?  Do you have any habits which are defiling to the body?

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PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Ask God to increase your faith, especially in things which seem impossible?

 

 

DAY 8

Luke 1:41  When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.

READ Luke 1:39-44

MEDITATE:  Why did Mary go to Elizabeth?  Why did she need Elizabeth?  Why did Elizabeth need her?  Who can you go to today (visit, letter, phone) that you need or that needs you?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: I CORINTHIANS 10:31  Do you take the slightest credit for anything good about you, rather than giving all the glory to God?  Do you talk of what you have done rather than of what Christ has done?  Are your statements mostly about “I”?  Are your feelings easily hurt?  Do you pretend to be something that you aren’t?

 

 

PRAISE/THANKS

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Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Ask for wisdom and courage to contact the person you need or who heeds you.

 

 

 

 

DAY 9

Luke 1:46-50  46      And Mary said: “My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant.  His mercy extends to those who fear him.

READ Luke 1:45-50

MEDITATE:  How did God show mercy to Mary?  How is God showing mercy to you?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: EPHESIANS 3:20  Are you self-conscious rather than Christ-conscious?  Do you allow feelings of inferiority to keep you from attempting things you should do in serving God?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

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Thank God for the mercy He is showing you today

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

 

DAY 10

Luke 1:51-53  He has performed mighty deeds with his arm; he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts. He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble.  He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty.

READ Luke 1:51-56

MEDITATE:  List everything Mary said God did for her.  List all you can that God has done for you this past year.

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: EPHESIANS 4:28  Do you do  little in your work?  Have you been careless in the payment of debts?  Do you waste time?  Do you waste other people’s time?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

Thank God for all He’s done for you this past year

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Ask God to make you a more grateful, thankful person

 

 

 

 

DAY 11

Luke 1:58  Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown her great mercy, and they shared her joy.

READ Luke 1:57-63

MEDITATE:  Who do you know that is currently a recipient of God’s mercy? What can you do to share their joy?  Do it.

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: EPHESIANS 4:32  Do you complain?  Do you find fault with others?  Do you have a critical attitude toward any person or things?  Are you irritable or cranky?  Do you get angry?  Do you become impatient with others?  Are you ever unkind or harsh?

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PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Claim promises from God which you have been doubting

 DAY 12

Luke 1:64  Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue was loosed, and he began to speak, praising God.

READ Luke 1:64-66

MEDITATE:  Zacheriah publicly praised God to everyone around him.  Who can you praise God to today?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: EPHESIANS 5:16  Do you listen to unedifying radio or TV programs? Do you read unworthy material? Do you find it necessary to seek satisfaction form any questionable  source? Are you doing certain things that show you are not satisfied in the Lord Jesus Christ?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Ask God to put people in your life today to whom you can praise what God has done for you.

 

 

 

 

DAY 13

Luke 1:69-72  He has raised up a horn of salvation for us … to show mercy to our fathers and to remember his holy covenant,

READ Luke 1:67-75

MEDITATE:  In what ways was God’s mercy shown to Israel?  In what ways was God’s mercy shown to you in past years (starting in childhood)?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: EPHESIANS  5:20 Have you neglected to thank Him for all things, the seemingly bad as well  as the good?  Have you virtually called God a liar by doubting His Word?  Do you worry?  Is your spiritual temperature based on your feelings instead of on the facts of God’s Word?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

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Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

Thank God for the mercy He’s shown you your whole life

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

 

 

DAY 14

Luke 1:79  to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.”

READ Luke 1:76-80

MEDITATE:  How does God shine His light on those in darkness today?  How can you be used today to shine His light on someone in darkness?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: PHILIPPIANS 1:21  Are you taken up with the cares of this life?  Is your conversation or heart joy over things rather than the  Lord and His work?  Does anything mean  more to you than living for & pleasing God?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

Thank God for shining His light on you

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Ask God to continue to shine His light on you

 

 

DAY 15

Matt 1:20  But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.

READ Matthew 1:18-21

MEDITATE:  Joseph ‘considered’ (thought and prayed long and hard) before God revealed His will to him.  What should you be considering more than you have?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: PHILIPPIANS 2:14  Do you ever, by word or deed, seek to hurt someone?  Do you gossip?  Do you speak unkindly concerning people not present?  Do you carry prejudice against true Christians because they are of some different group or church than  yours?  Do you think less of people who do not see everything exactly like you?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

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REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Things you need God’s wisdom on before acting:

 

DAY 16

Matt 1:25  But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

READ Matthew 1:22-25

MEDITATE:  “Jesus” means “Savior.”  Name as many things as possible that Jesus saved YOU from?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: PHILIPPIANS 4:4  Have you neglected to seek to be pleasing to Him in all things? Do you carry any bitterness toward God?  Have you complained against God in any way?  Have you been dissatisfied with His provision for you?  Is there in your heart any unwillingness to obey God fully?  Do you have any reservations as to what you would or would not do concerning anything that might be His will?  Have you disobeyed some direct leading from God?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

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Thank God for all the things He has saved you from (mention them individually)

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

 

 

 

 

DAY 17

Isa 9:6  For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

READ Isaiah 9:2-7

MEDITATE:  List the names of Jesus in this passage and give an example for each of how He functions in your life .

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: COLOSSIANS 3:9  Do you engage in empty and unprofitable conversation?  Do you ever lie?  Do you ever exaggerate? Do you ever cheat?  Do you ever steal?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

Thank God for each name of Jesus listed and what it means to you personally

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REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

 

DAY 18

Luke 2:4  So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David.

READ Luke 2:1-5

MEDITATE:  How does this passage show God is in control of world events?  What difference does it make in your life today that God is in charge of all the world?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: II TIMOTHY 2:22  Do you have any personal habits that are not pure?  Do you allow impure thoughts to stay in your mind?  Do you read that which is impure or  suggest unholy things?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Deeper faith in God’s sovereign control over everything

 

 

 

DAY 19

Micah 5:2  “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.”

READ Micah 5:1-2

MEDITATE:  Why does God pick small and insignificant things and places to use?  How does this apply to your life?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: HEBREWS 10:25  Do you  think about other things while God’s Word is taught?  Are you as faithful in your attendance as God wants you to  be?  Have you neglected or slighted daily private times of worship?  Does your family have regular family worship together?  Are you neglecting studying the Bible as you should?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

Thank God that He uses small things for His glory

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

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REQUESTS – SELF

Ask God to use little things in your life for His glory

 

DAY 20

Luke 2:6-7  While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

READ Luke 2:6-9

MEDITATE:  Was it fair that He didn’t have a home?  Didn’t He deserve at least a nice room to be born in?  Why do you think isn’t fair in you life?  Why doesn’t God always give us what we think we deserve?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: HEBREWS 13:17  Do you hesitate to submit to leaders in the church ? Are you lazy?  Do you in any way have a  stubborn or unteachable spirit?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

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REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Ask God to give you peace & patience about things that     

     aren’t fair in your life

 

 

 

DAY 21

Luke 2:13-14  Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,  “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”

READ Luke 2:10-14

MEDITATE:  Why were angels praising God?  What should you be praising God for this very day?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: JAMES 1:27  Is your manner of dress pleasing to God?  Do you spend beyond what is pleasing to God on anything?  Do you neglect to pray about things that you buy?

 

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PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

What can you praise God for today, like the angels did?

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

 

 

 

 DAY 22

Luke 2:17-18  When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.

READ Luke 2:15-20

MEDITATE:  Why did the shepherds tell others about Jesus’ birth?  Make a list of those you can tell about what Christmas is really all about?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: JAMES 4:6  Do you feel that you are doing quite well as a Christian?  Do you feel that you are not so bas as others?  Do you feel you are good enough for God?  Are you  stubborn?  Do you insist on having your own way?  Do you insist on your “rights”?

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

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REQUESTS – SELF

Pray for wisdom and courage to tell people about the real

       meaning of Christmas

 

 

 

DAY 23

Matt 1:25  But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus.

READ Luke 2:21-24

MEDITATE:  Why was Jesus dedicated to God?  Have you been dedicated to God?  If not, do it now.  What possessions of yours have not been dedicated to God?  Do that now/

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin: JAMES 4:11  Have you dishonored Him and hindered His work by criticizing God’s servants?  Have you failed to pray regularly for your pastor and leaders?  Do you find it hard to be corrected?

 

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PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

Thank God for all the things He has saved you from (mention them individually)

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

 

 

DAY 24

Luke 2:30  For my eyes have seen your salvation,

READ Luke 2:30-35

MEDITATE:  In what way did Simeon ‘see’ God’s salvation?  In what ways have you seen God’s salvation?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Time to spend with Jesus alone, thanking Him for coming to

       earth to provide salvation for you

 

 

 

DAY 25

Luke 2:37  and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying.

READ Luke 2:36-38

MEDITATE:  How could she ‘fast and pray day and night’?  Make every effort to find some extra time to pray and worship God today.  Fasting (especially after overeating yesterday) might be good — then you can use meal times to spend with God.

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

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REQUESTS – SELF

Think about and write some prayer requests for 1999

 

 

 

DAY 26

Num. 24:17  “I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near. A star will come out of Jacob; a scepter will rise out of Israel.  … A ruler will come out of Jacob.”

READ Numbers 24:17-19 

MEDITATE:  What does this prophecy say about Jesus?  Has all of it been fulfilled?  When will the rest be fulfilled?  What should our attitude be toward the coming year and the future in light of this?

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PRAY

CONFESSION of sin:

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Ask God to help your come up with His goals for your job

     and finances during 1999

 

 

 

 

 

DAY 27

Matt 2:1  After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi (wise men) from the east came to Jerusalem

READ Matthew 2:1-6

MEDITATE:  Why would wise men need Jesus?  Why would they spend so much time coming so far to see Him?  In what areas and ways do you need God’s wisdom today and for the coming year?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Ask God to help you come up with His goals for your

      emotional and relational life in the coming year.

DAY 28

Matt 2:12 Having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.

READ Matthew 2:7-12

MEDITATE:  God protected the Magi from danger they weren’t even aware of.  In looking back in your own life, where do you see God protected you when you weren’t even aware there was danger?

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PRAY

CONFESSION of sin:

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Ask God to help you come up with His goals for your

     family life in the coming year.

 

 

 

DAY 29

Matt 2:13-14 When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up,” he said, “take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt.”  So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt,

READ Matthew 2:13-18

MEDITATE:  What if Joseph did not obey immediately?  Is there an area where you are slow in obeying God?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin

 

PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

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REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Ask God to help you come up with His goals for your

     spiritual life in the coming year.

 

 

 

DAY 30

Matt 2:21-23  He got up, took the child and his mother and went to the land of Israel.  But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning in Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there. Having been warned in a dream, he withdrew to the district of Galilee, and he went and lived in a town called Nazareth. So was fulfilled what

READ Matthew 2:19-23

MEDITATE:  God chose the place where Jesus would live, and it was different than Joseph and Mary would have chosen.  How do you handle it when God leads you differently than you would choose?  How should you handle it if (when) it happens in 1999?

PRAY

CONFESSION of sin

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PRAISE/THANKS

Thank God for answers to yesterday’s prayers

Thank God for all He has done for you in 1999

 

REQUESTS – OTHERS

 

REQUESTS – SELF

Commit yourself unconditionally to do live for God in 1999

Ask God to help you come up with His goals for your

     church involvement in the coming year.

 

 

 

If you have completed this study please let me know.  I would enjoy knowing what you thought of it, what you learned, and what I can do to improve it.  Thanks and may God continue to bless you as you serve Him.     Jerry Schmoyer   jerry@schmoyer.net

 

C t O Rev. Dr. JERRY SCHMOYER
Christian Training Organization
jerry@ChristianTrainingOrganization.org
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