Greater Is The One Inside Of You

“You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.”

1 John 4:4 NIV

Greater by MercyMe

DSC_0734 publish

“What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?

Romans 8:31 NIV

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

Faithfulness

“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.”

Hebrews 10:23 NIV

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
    for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness.”

Lamentations 3:22-23 NIV

God is with you…He cares for you…He is faithful in everything…nothing can separate you from His love.

DSC_0044 publish

Your faithfulness continues through all generations;
    you established the earth, and it endures.”

Psalm 119:90 NIV

(This photo was taken in September of 2020 at a lake in northwestern Wisconsin)

Stay Committed In Faith

Commit to the Lord whatever you do,
    and he will establish your plans.”

Proverbs 16:3 NIV

Success in life is most often tied to commitment…when you learn the details of a success story there is always a moment or moments along the way that a person had to make a choice to stay committed to a vision or mission in order to see it through.  It is a willingness to commit that leads to success in relationships and our everyday life.  When we reflect on our lives, we all are committed to something right now…what is it for you?  Then ask the question how does that commitment tie into my faith and my relationship with God?

DSC_1448 publish

“Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be people of courage; be strong.  Do everything in love.”

1 Corinthians 16:13-14 NIV

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

Do Not Be Overcome

“You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.”

1 John 4:4 NIV

The bible tells us that we will have trouble in this world…and it states clearly that we can persevere through trials and temptations.  The bible also gives us examples of others who lived and suffered and how they interacted with God and lived their lives with faith.  At times it wasn’t pretty, they didn’t live lives that were sweet and easy all the time.  Read about Abraham and Sarah, read about Joseph in Genesis.  Look through the pages of David’s life in 1 Samuel.  Take time to read about the life of Jesus.  Yes, there are struggles, trials and suffering and living a life of faith and in God’s love doesn’t mean these will disappear…what it does mean is you will receive the courage and the hope to get through the difficult times.  Do not be overcome by darkness and evil look to God, pray and you will see hope.  Amen.

DSC_1245 publish

“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”

Romans 12:21 NIV

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 in Mount Rainier National Park in Washington)

With God In Control…

“I can do all things through [a]Christ who strengthens me.”

Philippians 4:13 NIV

We can be conquerors of sin…we can overcome obstacles…we can be blessed with wisdom to find our way. If we are willing to cast our worries and burdens on Him and trust His love for us anything is possible. There is nothing that can separate us from God’s love and God’s plan for us. Believe and you will receive.  Amen.

DSC_1556 publish

“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”

Romans 8:37 NIV

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 at Sapphire Point near Dillon, Colorado)

Contentment

But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction.”

1 Timothy 6:6-9 NIV

The worldly ways and worldly values say ‘get more’, ‘you need more’, ‘you are not enough’…this is evil working to keep us focused on ourselves and not on God.  The truth is we are not enough on our own and I am not talking about in the pursuit of worldly values…I am referring to our need for God and our relationship with Jesus Christ.  When we recognize that because of sin we will never be good enough on our own we can turn towards God who has saved us by sacrificing His Son and live content knowing we are saved by faith.

DSC_0081 publish

I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. 12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”

Philippians 4:11-13 NIV

(This photo was taken in April of 2020 at a lake near Plymouth, Minnesota)

Faith Over Fear

So do not fear, for I am with you;
    do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
    I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

Isaiah 41:10 NIV

“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.”

2 Timothy 1:7 NIV

DSC07538 publish

Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. 14 Do everything in love.”

1 Corinthians 16:13-14 NIV

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

I Will Praise You In The Storm

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”

James 1:2-5 NIV

Even though I walk
    through the darkest valley,[a]
I will fear no evil,
    for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.”

Psalm 23:4 NIV

Praise You In This Storm by Casting Crowns

DSC_0765 publish

But now, this is what the Lord says—
    he who created you, Jacob,
    he who formed you, Israel:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
    I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters,
    I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
    they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
    you will not be burned;
    the flames will not set you ablaze.
For I am the Lord your God,
    the Holy One of Israel, your Savior;…”

Isaiah 43:1-3 NIV

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

Peace That Surpasses Understanding

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

John 14:27 NIV

We will not find peace in the things or people of the world…if we do it will be fleeting, a moment in time that will be gone again.  God has told us in this world we will have trouble…this means all of us.  Just because you don’t see the trouble someone else is experiencing doesn’t mean they have none.  Our refuge and the giver of peace that lasts is God.  Put your trust in Him every day and you will find peace that surpasses understanding.  Amen.

DSC_0262 publish

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness[d] be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 4:4-7 NIV

(This photo was taken in July of 2021 at Bear Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado)

Humble Yourselves

“Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’

13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’

14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

Luke 18:10-14 NIV

Jesus taught us about humility in the bible.  We need to remember…it’s not about me first.  There is a significant difference between self-care and being self-centered.  To be humble takes courage, to admit that we make mistakes and poor choices with an attitude that seeks redemption is a path to peace.

DSC01182 publish

“…if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

2 Chronicles 7:14 NIV

(This photo was taken in April of 2016 at a lake in central Minnestoa)