Life Through Christ

Therefore Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved.[a] They will come in and go out, and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”

John 10:7-10

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“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”

John 15:5-8

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 in Glacier National Park in Montana)

Prepare The Way For The Lord

God’s story and God’s plan is greater than our self-oriented desires…we are a part of His story, not the other way around.  We all have been given certain gifts to use while we are here…our job is to recognize the gifts we have been given and to use them to help others.  We are to do our part to Prepare the Way for the coming of the Lord when He returns.  Amen.

“…as it is written in Isaiah the prophet:

“I will send my messenger ahead of you,
    who will prepare your way”[a]
“a voice of one calling in the wilderness,
‘Prepare the way for the Lord,
    make straight paths for him.’”[b]

Mark 1:2-3

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“Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them.”

John 3:36

(This photo was taken in October 0f 2014 at sunrise on the island of Maui, Hawaii)

Jesus Set The Example

For everything…His character…His goodness…His compassion…His response to questions…His attitude…His selflessness…His love.  No matter what our struggle is, no matter where we are in life…Jesus has an example of how we should try to respond, react, proceed.  This morning I read about one of the most unbelievable things He did…while hanging on the Cross, blood draining out of His body…taking the punishment we and those who put Him there deserve, He spoke these words:

“Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”[a] And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.”

Luke 23:34

No matter what is happening in your life turn towards Jesus Christ, learn from Him and you will find peace.  Amen.

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Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.”

Romans 12:9-13

(This photo was taken in June of 2018 by a lake in Plymouth, Minnesota)

The Word Of The Lord

Your word is a lamp for my feet,
    a light on my path.”

Psalm 119:105

“You are my refuge and my shield;
    I have put my hope in your word.”

Psalm 119:114

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“For,

“All people are like grass,
    and all their glory is like the flowers of the field;
the grass withers and the flowers fall,
25     but the word of the Lord endures forever.”[a]

And this is the word that was preached to you.”

1 Peter 1:24-25

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 in Glacier National Park in Montana)

To Make Him Known

Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.”

Matthew 28:16-18

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Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Matthew 28:19-20

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

The Word Became Flesh

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome[a] it.

There was a man sent from God whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light.

The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.”

John 1:1-13

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“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.”

John 1:14

(This photo was taken in June of 2013 at The Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota)

The Message

“…but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, 24 but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.”

1 Corinthians 1:23-24

“Who has believed our message
    and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?
He grew up before him like a tender shoot,
    and like a root out of dry ground.
He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,
    nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.
He was despised and rejected by mankind,
    a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.
Like one from whom people hide their faces
    he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

Surely he took up our pain
    and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God,
    stricken by him, and afflicted.
But he was pierced for our transgressions,
    he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
    and by his wounds we are healed.”

Isaiah 53:1-5

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“Do you now believe?” Jesus replied. 32 “A time is coming and in fact has come when you will be scattered, each to your own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me.

33 “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 16:31-33

(This photo was taken in July of 2015 at a lake in central Minnesota)

Greater Is He

Make it a priority in your life to spend time with Jesus Christ your Savior and Lord.  He has conquered all things and nothing you are facing or will face in your life is greater then Him and His saving grace.  Amen.

“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

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“He must become greater; I must become less.”

John 3:30

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

The Good News

“And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.[a]

The Shepherds and the Angels

And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. 10 And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”

Luke 2:6-11

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“This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
    and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

Luke 2:12-14

(This photo was taken in June of 2013 at the Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota)

He Has Set An Example

Throughout history the phrase “What would Jesus do?” has shown up in popularity and faded and shown up again.  Taken at its most basic level the question is valid to reflect upon.  His behaviors, His kindness, His generosity, His goodness, His mercy, His forgiveness, how He treated others and especially, His love.  We would do well to learn more about what He would do according to the Scriptures.  May the peace of Christ be with you.  Amen.

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“I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.”

John 13:15

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 in Glacier National Park in Montana)