6 “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
John 14:6 NIV
We all have different lives and different choices to make in our lives. Depending on where we live, what the weather is like, the environment of our home and where we spend our days. This can be all different…what is common among all people? The place in our hearts that is made to be filled by God. He is the Creator and He made us with this special space that can only be filled properly by a personal relationship with Him. Now that certainly hasn’t stopped the human race from trying to fill it with just about anything other than God. If anything other than God is in that space you will not feel complete, content or know true peace. Make time to be alone with God and invite Jesus into the place reserved for Him every day. May you know God’s comfort and God’s faithfulness.
13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
Matthew 7:13-14 NIV
(This photo was taken in March of 2018 near Winterset, Iowa)
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
Matthew 11:28 NIV
“He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee…”
Luke 24:6 NIV
Easter is a time to gather and praise the Name that is above every Name on earth…Jesus. Throughout the Scriptures He invites us to come to Him and it is only with Him that we can find peace. So, amid the busyness we bring on ourselves…make time to stop…sit in the quiet and worship our Savior and Lord. He came so that we could be with God. He suffered and died on the Cross to do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. In the spirit of the season, I extend an invitation to all of you. No matter where you are in the world you can come to worship service for Easter at Eagle Brook Church Online. Below is a link to their website so you can find times for online worship services next week. May we all know the peace that God provides by sending His one and only Son for us. I invite you to come, now is the time to worship.
Eagle Brook Church
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.”
John 3:16-17 NIV
(This photo was taken in April of 2016 during sunrise at a lake in central Minnesota)
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”
James 1:2-4 NIV
Purposeful…dedicated…courageous…committed…determined…resolute. It takes strength to run the race of faith. The evil in this world will bring us many forms of darkness and struggle, it will work hard, very hard to keep us away from God. We have to be willing to fight just as hard to stay close to God and trust in the hope that faith gives us…even when…especially when we can’t see it. Don’t give up, keep the faith, when you get knocked back or pushed down trust in God and keep running the race of faith. Amen.
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.”
Hebrews 12:1 NIV
(This photo was taken in July of 2016 on Beartooth Pass in Montana)
“Taste and see that the Lord is good;
blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.”
Psalm 34:8 NIV
If ever there was a time to explore faith…to grab a bible, sit down and ask God the questions you want to ask…if ever there was a time to be able to step away from the busyness and read what God has said in the bible. As with everything, the current days are all about your perspective…you can choose to complain about what you can’t do or where you aren’t able to go…and focus on why a self-serving life is not satisfying…or you can take the opportunity to learn more about God your creator and to seek a relationship with Jesus Christ…take time to taste and see what faith is all about. Amen.
“Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. 2 Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, 3 now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.”
1 Peter 2:1-3 NIV
(This photo was taken in December of 2018 while visiting the Bahamas)
“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord,
whose confidence is in him.
8 They will be like a tree planted by the water
that sends out its roots by the stream.
It does not fear when heat comes;
its leaves are always green.
It has no worries in a year of drought
and never fails to bear fruit.”
Jeremiah 17:7-8 NIV
A vital element to any relationship is trust. If there is a lack of trust everything else that comes after that will be filled with negativity and the relationship will erode and break apart. Trust takes effort, commitment and humility. Trust works like a bank account…you build it over time making deposits and it can disappear quickly with big withdrawals. The most important relationship for each of us is our relationship with Jesus Christ. We can trust in Him because of who He is and what He has done for us…to learn more read about Him, His birth, His life, His death and His resurrection and know that He did it for you…because He loves you. Amen.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Jeremiah 29:11 NIV
(This photo was taken in August of 2012 while hiking on the North Shore of Lake Superior)
“The Lord is my light and my salvation—
whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life—
of whom shall I be afraid?”
Psalm 27:1 NIV
When we wander off course or make poor decisions…when we go our own way instead of drawing near to God…life is harder, we struggle more and get discouraged and defeated. When we turn towards God first with every decision, every day…the light of Christ will shine bright for us and illuminate our path. When we choose to put God first and we will see a light in the darkness. Thanks be to God for the Light of life. Amen.
“For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.”
2 Corinthians 4:6 NIV
(This photo was taken this morning at sunrise over a lake in northwestern Wisconsin)
“For nothing will be impossible with God.”
Luke 1:37 NIV
“But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
Matthew 19:26 NIV
Spend time in your relationship with God…remember the things He teaches us. Keep doing good things and doing your best according to His Word. Keep praying, keep believing…keep moving towards God. The next moment might be the best moment…a breakthrough is coming if you are willing to be persistent and patient. Anything is possible with God…God is working even when you can’t see it. Praise be to God.
Haven’t Seen It Yet by Danny Gokey
“As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. 2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. 3 Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. 4 There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism; 6 one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.”
Ephesians 4:1-6 NIV
(This photo was taken in July of 2019 at a lake near Plymouth, Minnesota)
“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
Romans 12:1-2 NIV
Jesus Christ is born…the promised Savior has come! Now what? What difference is He making in your life? Are you aware of God’s presence in your daily life? Believe…seek Him…pray…read God’s Word…pay attention to how God is at work in your life. Choose to live different…allow Jesus Christ to impact every area of your life.
Different by Micah Tyler
“I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. 27 And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.”
Ezekiel 36:26-27 NIV
(This photo was take in September of 2022 in Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming)
The bible states things very clearly…it doesn’t say you may or might face trouble in this world, no…it is clear that we will face trouble and hardship. Jesus gives us the bad news and then immediately gives us the Good News when He says…
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
John 16:33 NIV
He tells us take heart, which means be strong, be courageous and today rise up from the ashes of trouble and suffering because He is with you. Trust the words of Jesus, believe and Rise Up! Amen.
Rise Up by CAIN
“Arise, shine, for your light has come,
and the glory of the Lord rises upon you.
2 See, darkness covers the earth
and thick darkness is over the peoples,
but the Lord rises upon you
and his glory appears over you.
3 Nations will come to your light,
and kings to the brightness of your dawn.”
Isaiah 60:1-3 NIV
(This photo was taken in August of 2016 near Arches National Park in Utah)
“I know the plans I have for you,” announces the Lord. “I want you to enjoy success. I do not plan to harm you. I will give you hope for the years to come. 12 Then you will call out to me. You will come and pray to me. And I will listen to you. 13 When you look for me with all your heart, you will find me.”
Jeremiah 29:11-13 NIRV
Have you had moments like this? “That’s not what I meant”…”I wish they knew me better”…”I don’t feel like I fit in”…”Nobody understands me.” I have been there before. You can be surrounded by people but feel like you are isolated. God knows who you are, He knows what you can do, He knows how you think and He cares for you. If you feel like you are off the rails in your life, it is time to get back to God. He is waiting to hear from you. He is the Creator, the one who formed you and has been right there with you every step of the way in life. Turn towards God. Trust in Him. May you see the blessings from God in your life each day. Amen.
“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”
Psalm 139:23-24 NIV
(This photo was taken in July of 2018 on the shore of Lake Superior in Ashland, Wisconsin)