Remember What God Can Do

The Lord is righteous in all his ways
    and faithful in all he does.
18 The Lord is near to all who call on him,
    to all who call on him in truth.
19 He fulfills the desires of those who fear him;
    he hears their cry and saves them.”

Psalm 145:17-19 NIV

Don’t give up…keep going.  God is with you.  We may not understand everything right now…yet we must continue on in faith.  Remember in previous times and old struggles how God showed up even though you thought the situation was hopeless or impossible?  Keep praying and be courageous even when though you are unsure of the outcome.  May God’s comfort and peace be with you.

Haven’t Seen It Yet by Danny Gokey

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“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”

Romans 12:12 NIV

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

Persistence

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, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”

Hebrews 12:1-3 NIV

Do not give up…don’t assume you know the outcome…they say failure is a stepping stone to success…or the next attempt maybe the one that brings success.  We will always have the opportunity to stop trying to do something.  Maybe the answers for a situation are related to trying a new approach or a new way rather than quitting.  If we are able to surrender control and trust in God and His plan, we may find new outcomes we didn’t imagine were possible.  Bring your worries and struggles to the Cross and let Jesus lead the way.  Amen.

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“Let us not become weary of doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”

Galatians 6:9 NIV

(This photo was taken in June of 2013 near Pike’s Peak in Colorado)

Renew Your Perspective And Strength

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:[a] The old has gone, the new is here!”

2 Corinthians 5:17 NIV

Many aspects of life on earth can make us weary and tired, shaping our perspective to approach life with negativity, doubt and fear.  We often forget, daily, that we can choose our attitude and perspective for this day.  If we focus all our thoughts and energy on our problems and why me, then we may get stuck and begin to spiral downward.  We can be renewed and draw strength by turning our focus to the Lord.  No matter what you are facing remember God is in control and if you put your trust in Him, your strength will be renewed.  Amen.

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“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.  Even youths grow tired and weary and young men stumble and fall;  but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. 

They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary they will walk and not be faint.”

Isaiah 40:29-31 NIV

(This photo was taken in March of 2018 while traveling through southern New Mexico)

Don’t Quit

Let us not become tired of doing good. At the right time we will gather a crop if we don’t give up. 10 So when we can do good to everyone, let us do it. Let’s try even harder to do good to the family of believers.”

Galatians 6:9-10 NIRV

Our lives are filled with moments and memories…some are good times and some are difficult.  We all tend to embellish a bit in our memories, the memory of good times seems to be really good and the memory of bad times seem to be really bad.  Sometimes our bad memories start to take a person down a road where even the present moments are seen through their eyes with a negative perspective.  This is a quick spiral downward and we can get stuck in the swirl of negativity.  We have to have the courage to choose a new perspective, a more balanced view things and we are fed that perspective when we read the Word of God.  When times are hard and it feels like you are making no progress on anything…don’t give up, keep pressing on, keep believing…that is your faith at work.  Goodness will come to those who believe in the hope that God provides through Jesus Christ.  May God’s peace be with you.  Amen.

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“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”

Colossians 3:12 NIV

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

Developing Who We Are

But the Lord is faithful; he will strengthen you and guard you from the evil one.[b] And we are confident in the Lord that you are doing and will continue to do the things we commanded you. May the Lord lead your hearts into a full understanding and expression of the love of God and the patient endurance that comes from Christ.”

2 Thessalonians 3:3-5 NLT

The faith journey takes us on a road of self-awareness and growth.  As we read God’s Word and the teachings of Jesus, we hear messages about our attitudes, our behaviors, our words and our actions.  These are all things that we can control in our everyday life.  Instead of wasting our time worrying and wringing our hands about what other people are doing, thinking or saying we would do well to focus that effort on developing the Fruit of the Spirit in our own lives and relationships.  After all, we have the most control over one thing more than any other…how we choose to respond.  May we strive to grow the Fruit of the Spirit in who we are in the world.  Amen.

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“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.  Against such things there is no law.”

Galatians 5:22-23 NIV

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

Along The Way

“While they were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.”

Luke 24:36 NIV

As we live our day to day lives and experience each and every detail of life we are easily distracted from recognizing God is with us.  He is in everything…He is the Creator and the Author of our faith…“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”  Hebrews 13:8 NIV

Just like the two individuals in Luke 24, they were ‘On the Road to Emmaus’.  They were busy discussing what had happened over the previous three days…Jesus of Nazareth who they believed was a prophet was handed over and crucified but he was supposed to be the one to redeem Israel.  They and all the disciples thought…’ok now we have a king who is powerful and will be sure to set things right for us in this world’…just like many of us today who latch on to something or someone and think ‘ok this is the thing or the person who is going to make everything right in my life’.

Then the two ‘On the Road’ encountered another while walking.  He asked them questions and they explained their dismay at what had occurred, even though Jesus himself had told them several times before he died what was going to happen…even though it was stated by many of the early prophets that He will come, be sacrificed and will be raised from the dead.

They couldn’t understand, they were so distracted by the events of their everyday life to even notice that Jesus was right there with them the whole time.  He was walking right beside them listening, teaching them and while they were sharing a meal with Him…Finally!  They could see He was right there with them the whole time.

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Friends, God is with us…right here, right now.  Jesus said in the Gospel according to John…

“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

(This photo was taken in February of 2022 at Cascade State Park along the North Shore of Lake Superior)

Put Your Hope In God

Why am I discouraged?
    Why is my heart so sad?
I will put my hope in God!
    I will praise him again—
    my Savior and my God!”

Psalm 42:11 NLT

Where is your hope?  What do you put your hope in?  Do you put your hope in worldly values and worldly perspectives?  I certainly have in my life.  Is your hope in something that can be taken away from you and leave you disappointed and discouraged?  Yep, been there done that.  We must stop trying to fill the void in our hearts with the things or people of the world as that only leads to frustration…we were created for relationship with our God.  Only God can satisfy the desires of our hearts through a relationship with Jesus Christ.  Put your hope in God.

Find Rest by Fracesca Battistelli

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Have you never heard?
    Have you never understood?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of all the earth.
He never grows weak or weary.
    No one can measure the depths of his understanding.
29 He gives power to the weak
    and strength to the powerless.
30 Even youths will become weak and tired,
    and young men will fall in exhaustion.
31 But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength.
    They will soar high on wings like eagles.
They will run and not grow weary.
    They will walk and not faint.”

Isaiah 40:28-31 NLT

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

Persevere

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.”

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.

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“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)

Remember What God Can Do

Don’t you know who made everything?
    Haven’t you heard about him?
The Lord is the God who lives forever.
    He created everything on earth.
He won’t become worn out or get tired.
    No one will ever know how great his understanding is.
29 He gives strength to those who are tired.
    He gives power to those who are weak.
30 Even young people become worn out and get tired.
    Even the best of them trip and fall.
31 But those who trust in the Lord
    will receive new strength.
They will fly as high as eagles.
    They will run and not get tired.
    They will walk and not grow weak.”

Isaiah 40:28-31 NIRV

Haven’t Seen It Yet by Danny Gokey

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“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”

Romans 12:12 NIV

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

Persevere Under Trial

My brothers and sisters, you will face all kinds of trouble. When you do, think of it as pure joy. Your faith will be tested. You know that when this happens it will produce in you the strength to continue. And you must allow this strength to finish its work. Then you will be all you should be. You will have everything you need. If any of you needs wisdom, you should ask God for it. He will give it to you. God gives freely to everyone and doesn’t find fault.”

James 1:2-5 NIRV

Don’t give up…keep praying…keep trying…be persistent…have courage…believe.  Everyone is challenged by something in life.  Everyone is fighting a battle of some kind.  It is in these situations that we can see the power of God, we can see His mercy and His grace when we shift our perspective off of worldly treasures and back on to Jesus.  God is holding on to you through everything the world is throwing at you.  Trust in Him and persevere through trials.  Amen.

I Am by Crowder

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“Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.”

James 1:12 NIV

(This photo was taken in October of 2018 standing on one of the Bridges of Madison County near Winterset, Iowa)