Modesty…humbleness…meekness.  Let go of pride and trust the Lord to lead you.  It may be uncomfortable, it will be difficult…God never promised life would be easy but He has provided the Way, the Truth and the Life through His Son.  Invite the Lord Jesus into your heart and life circumstances, no matter what you have done or what you have not done, He wants to hear from you.  May the grace and peace of the Lord be with you.  Amen.

Who Am I by Casting Crowns

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“Submit yourselves, then, to God.  Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.  Come near to God and he will come near to you…”

James 4:7-8

(This photo was taken in June of 2013 in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado)

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A way of thinking…a point of view…outlook…perspective…belief.  How would you define your attitude toward God?  What is His role?  How much time during a typical week are we thinking about God?  The Bible has many of examples of different people and their attitude towards God, it describes their beliefs and actions.  There is a lot for us to learn from those people.  From Genesis to Revelation, we read about those who put God at the center of their lives and those who did not.  The best example of an appropriate attitude towards God is that of Jesus Christ…He took time daily to walk with God and this is what He seeks from us as well.  Spend time with Jesus every day and define your attitude towards God.  Amen.

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“He has showed you, O mortal, what is good.  And what does the Lord require of you?  To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”

Micah 6:8

(This photo was taken in July of 2012 on a walk in northwestern Wisconsin)

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Free Will

God has given us the gift of free will.  We are allowed to choose how we will respond to everything.  When you think about it after everything that God has experienced with the human race…why did He do this?  After all the things humans have chosen to do wrong starting with Adam and Eve, why allow us to choose?  I believe it is because real love, joy and goodness offered voluntarily is the only kind worth having…the risk, of course, is we are filled with sinful hearts and minds and we often choose poorly and that is why bad things happen in the world.  Use your free will to offer goodness, kindness, love and joy to others.  Amen.

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“You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free.  But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love.  The entire law is summed up in a single command:  “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

Galatians 5:13-14

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 near Arches National Park in Utah)

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Connection Through Prayer

The joy of the resurrection is more than a one day event or church service.  It is the fulfillment of God’s promise to never leave us or abandon us.  We can continue and grow our relationship with the Lord each day through prayer.  Prayer that is from the heart, that involves raw emotion, not a list of wants or a moment that we recite words before a meal with no feeling or emotion other than let’s finish praying so we can eat.  Our connection with God the Father exists through our personal relationship with Jesus Christ our risen Lord…start today…thank Jesus for what He did for you on the cross and ask Him to guide you and teach you through your prayers.  Amen.

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“May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance.”

2 Thessalonians 3:5

(This photo was taken in October of 2014 on the island of Maui, Hawaii)

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Easter Sunday…Christ Is Risen!

He is risen, indeed!  Alleluia!  Hope has been restored and renewed, Jesus Christ has defeated death.  Life is a gift, an experience to live and to share with one another, and with God in control all things are possible.  Put the risen Lord first in your life and you will find the Fruits of the Spirit.  Christ Is Risen!  He is risen indeed!  Alleluia!

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“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!  In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead…”

 1 Peter 1:3

(This photo was taken in March of 2013 at the Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in the Bellagio in Las Vegas, Nevada)

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Holy Saturday…Preparation Day

It is finished…Jesus, the Messiah, had been crucified and died.  We all know the coming glory of tomorrow…however, when these events were happening, it is hard to comprehend the level of sorrow and sadness that had to exist.  Unfortunately, there are people in today’s world who suffer at a deep level of sorrow because of sin and evil.  Our saving grace and our truth is we know that from the most devastating of tragedy, God will renew and restore us and He has shown us an example by what we will celebrate tomorrow.  Trust in the Lord for He is good and His love endures forever.  Amen.

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“Going to Pilate, he asked for Jesus’ body.  Then he took it down, wrapped it in linen cloth and placed it in the tomb cut in the rock, one in which no one had yet been laid.  It was Preparation Day, and the Sabbath was about to begin.”

Luke 23:52-54

(This photo was taken in June of 2013 in Badlands National Park in South Dakota)

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Good Friday…God’s Love

Sacrifice…Savior…Salvation.  God has shown us just how much He loves you, cares for you and values you.  He sacrificed His Son, our Savior for our Salvation.  Thanks be to God for His everlasting love.  Amen.

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“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this:  While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

Romans 5:8

(Photo credit: Stockphoto)

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Filling the Void

We all are born with a void in our spirit.  We all have free will, it is a gift from God.  As we go through this life we make choices about what is filling the void.  We choose sinful behaviors and we choose spirit led behaviors.  It is up to each and every one of us to invite Jesus Christ into our hearts and lives…He will not force His way in without an invitation from us.  Say a prayer and ask Jesus Christ into the void in you and see what God has planned for you.  Amen.

The Motions by Matthew West

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“O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where this is no water.” 

Psalm 63:1

(This photo was taken in July of 2016 in Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming)

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An offering…to give up something of value to serve a greater cause or to help others.  During this Holy Week we recount the events that led to the greatest sacrifice in human history.  Jesus Christ suffering and sacrificing Himself to death on a cross in order to save us from our sins.  And just when we may wonder ‘what more could He do’…He spoke these words while hanging on the cross, “…Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”  – Luke 23:34  Whenever I reflect on these events, I typically end up asking myself the same question in my mind…’what have I done for Him, after He has done so much for me?’

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“For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Mark 10:45

(This photo was taken in June of 2016 at a lake near Plymouth, Minnesota)

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Brave…bold…stouthearted…spirited…determined.  When we come to a situation or scenario that is beyond our control we get a glimpse of the powers that exist beyond ourselves.  It forces us to look at the world and our life with a different perspective.  It takes courage to have heartfelt compassion…it takes courage to be truly humble…it takes courage to admit we are broken and we need help.  It takes courage to move forward after a tragedy of any kind.  Our inspiration for courage should come from the One who was more courageous than any other in His life, His death and His resurrection.  Jesus Christ…turn to Him in prayer for your courage to face whatever is weighing on your heart today.  Amen.

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“Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and courageous.  Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Joshua 1:9

(This photo was taken in April of 2016 on a lake in central Minnesota)

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