Run To The Lord

Don’t hesitate…don’t come casually…decide to come to the Lord and then run to Him.  He is waiting for you…He will comfort you, strengthen you and guide your way.  Amen.

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The name of the Lord is a fortified tower;
    the righteous run to it and are safe.”

Proverbs 18:10

(This photo was taken in July of 2018 at a park near Bayfield, Wisconsin)

 

Trust In The Lord

“Trust in the Lord and do good;
    dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
Take delight in the Lord,
    and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Commit your way to the Lord;
    trust in him and he will do this:
He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn,
    your vindication like the noonday sun.

Be still before the Lord
    and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when people succeed in their ways,
    when they carry out their wicked schemes.

Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
    do not fret—it leads only to evil.
For those who are evil will be destroyed,
    but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land.”

Psalm 37:3-9

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But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

Matthew 6:33-34

(This photo was taken in July of 2016 while traveling through North Dakota)

Stand Firm

When a person stands firm in faith they are often persecuted and told that their thinking is outdated or wrong.  This is because the way of the world and the way of faith are constantly in conflict with each other.  The world wants faith to be convenient, easy, self-pleasing and self-serving.  The way of the world is about following the sinful nature.  The way of faith is not about the self-first…it is about God’s Word and Jesus Christ…the way of faith is about being humble, admitting that sin is wrong and confessing our sins…the way of faith is about surrendering your will and following God’s will according to His word.  The way of faith is about your relationship with Jesus Christ.  Stand firm in faith.  Amen.

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God[a] may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

2 Timothy 3:16-17

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

1 Corinthians 16:13-14

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

All People

Are created by God.  He has a plan and He values all people.  If we choose to judge others by the standards of the world, we are forgetting about what God teaches us.  Often times we know very little about others we encounter in our daily life…yet we are quick to assume things about them.  Pick up God’s word and strive to see people through the eyes of Jesus.  Like many aspects of our faith journey it is simple, but it’s not easy.  Peace be with you.  Amen.

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Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom, 13 because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment.”

James 2:12-13

(This photo was taken in October of 2018 at a park in Winterset, Iowa)

The Experience Of Following

Jesus was very clear about what it takes to follow Him. It does not mean life will be easy and you will not have to face any trouble or suffering…it means we will have trouble because we live in a world that pursues the exact opposite of what Jesus teaches us. It also does not mean your life will be miserable…again it is the opposite, you can have joy and peace and contentment. It all comes down to what do you believe? Your beliefs will drive your values, your perspective and even your attitude. And so, Jesus said…“Follow me”Matthew 9:9

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And calling the crowd to him with his disciples, he said to them, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 35 For whoever would save his life[a] will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel’s will save it. 36 For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?”

Mark 8:34-36

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

The Price Of Salvation

Today is the third day since Resurrection Sunday and we must caution against taking our salvation for granted.  For most people by now they are focused solely on the tasks of work or daily tasks at home and the glory of Christ sacrifice for us is in the rear-view mirror.  The faith journey and spiritual growth is about so much more than checking in on Sunday and checking out the rest of the week.  Seek your relationship with Jesus Christ every day, spend time with Him and in God’s Word.  May the peace of the Lord be with you.  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

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

Add To Your Faith

The faith journey is an on-going learning and growing process.  It is about our relationship with Jesus Christ and how it impacts life.  It is not a to do list of check the box things and move on to the next…it is interwoven into our daily life.  We can choose to acknowledge it or not.  If we want to know peace that surpasses all understanding…we should choose to explore faith and see what God has planned for our journey.  Amen.

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For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

2 Peter 1:5-8

(This photo was taken in July of 2016 along Beartooth Pass in Montana)

Walk In The Light

Our faith is about more than what we believe…it is also about how we put what we believe into actions.  A faith journey is best lived inside-out…start with you…what do you believe…what is your relationship with Jesus Christ…your sin…your confession…this isn’t a check the box in the process type of thing, it is a daily surrender of self-centered desires.  As we build our faith on the foundation of coming to the Cross, we can take the things we learn and put them into practice in our daily lives and interactions…this is a journey that requires commitment, it requires a willingness to sacrifice and it provides peace and joy that is beyond our imagination.  May peace be with you.  Amen.

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If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all[a] sin.”

1 John 1:6-7

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

Stay Connected

Both to God and to others.  Yes, the world has changed and things are very different than they were a few weeks ago…most if not all of it was outside of your control…still today how you choose to respond is completely up to you.  You can connect to/stay connected to God by reading His Word and praying or you can reject the opportunity to explore your faith and build your relationship with Jesus Christ…you can choose to find simple or creative ways to connect to family and friends or you can focus your time on what was lost with the changes you can’t control.  Yes, we are all different and we all deal with change in different ways…and God gives us free will to choose our response…so how will you choose to respond?  Choose God (verse above the photo), choose life (verse below the photo).  Amen.

“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

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Though one may be overpowered,
    two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.”

Ecclesiastes 4:12

(This photo was taken in July of 2016 in Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota)

Come Near…

Listen to songs of worship…go to a quiet place and pray…read God’s Word…reflect on where and when have you seen God at work in your life…have gratitude and give thanks for the blessings you have in your life…share whatever you can with those who are in need…these are just a few of the ways you can come near to God…none of them cost money, only a willingness and a desire to have a relationship with Him.  Use this time to connect or reconnect with God the Father, Jesus Christ His only Son our Lord and the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

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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. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”

James 4:7-8

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