God’s Promises

God has made many promises and He keeps His word.  Too often we think God has failed because we expect Him to work on our timeline, when we want or we believe is the right time or way for something to happen.  That is our mistake not God’s.  We are not in control; humankind did not create the world and we do not determine its outcome.  What God has asked us to do is to trust Him and to care for one another.  Read God’s word and learn about His promises, they are the only promises you know will be kept.  Amen.

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“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

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 while traveling through Utah)

Comfort And Peace

It is astonishing to discover the comfort and peace that God can provide with His presence when we surrender control and strive to not only listen to the Word of God but actually do what it says.  The process of surrender takes time and I have only sensed this amazing comfort and peace on few occasions because…well old habits die hard.  The self is stubborn.  One occasion most recently was when my Dad went home to the Lord, unexpectedly.  I clung more tightly to the words in my bible and prayed more passionately…and as promised, God carried me through and is still carrying me and my family onward.  The hardest part is trying to avoid slipping back into old habits or old ways of thinking, especially after sensing such a closeness with the Lord.  The comfort and peace we seek and that God offers every single person is available to us today and everyday…if we are willing to put aside our selfish ways and desires and put our hope in God.  Amen.

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“The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love.  The Lord is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made.”

Psalm 145:8-9

(This photo was taken in September of 2016 at a lake in central Minnesota)

We Believe

Today is a day of worship and praise.  The faith journey is often a struggle and feeling alone…we are not alone and we can never forget the foundation of our faith, Jesus Christ.  We must persevere, be strong, have courage and believe.  I offer praise and worship this Sunday through song.  This one by The Newsboys, here are the lyrics and a link to We Believe

We Believe by The Newsboys

In this time of desperation
When all we know is doubt and fear
There is only one foundation
We believe, we believe
In this broken generation
When all is dark, You help us see
There is only one salvation
We believe, we believe

We believe in God the Father
We believe in Jesus Christ
We believe in the Holy Spirit
And He’s given us new life
We believe in the crucifixion
We believe that He conquered death
We believe in the resurrection
And He’s comin’ back again, we believe

So, let our faith be more than anthems
Greater than the songs we sing
And in our weakness and temptations
We believe, we believe!

We believe in God the Father!
We believe in Jesus Christ!
We believe in the Holy Spirit!
And He’s given us new life!
We believe in the crucifixion!
We believe that He conquered death!
We believe in the resurrection!
And He’s comin’ back again!

Let the lost be found and the dead be raised!
In the here and now, let love invade!
Let the church live loud, our God we’ll say
We believe, we believe!
And the gates of hell will not prevail!
For the power of God, has torn the veil!
Now we know Your love will never fail!
We believe, we believe!

We believe in God the Father
We believe in Jesus Christ
We believe in the Holy Spirit
And He’s given us new life!
We believe in the crucifixion!
We believe that He conquered death!
We believe in the resurrection!
And He’s comin’ back,
He’s comin’ back again!
He’s comin’ back again!
We believe!
We believe

 

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“Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life.  He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.”

John 6:35

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

Learn To Listen

The skill of listening is becoming less and less frequent in today’s world.  It seems people are so intent on speaking and spend more time preparing a response then seeking to understand others.  It is a form of selfishness.  All of us are cursed with some form of selfishness…it does not go away or become less present over time unless we are actively working on reducing its presence in our lives.  In order to strengthen our abilities to see things from the perspective of another person we can start by listening and seeking to understand them.  Listening does not mean you automatically agree with them rather it means you are willing to consider more than your own opinion.  We do not have all the answers, nobody on earth does…nobody.  The only one who knows is God…and if we can’t listen to Him we will struggle more than is necessary.  May God’s love and peace be with you.

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“Listen to advice and accept instruction, and in the end you will be wise.”

Proverbs 19:20

(This photo was taken in June of 2016 at a lake place in northwestern Wisconsin)

Choose Love

Relationships can be hard if we strive to seek power or control.  If our self is driving during our interactions with others things will often end poorly.  There will be bitterness, anger, frustration and all the things we don’t want to be a part of our relationships.  There is a better way.  There is love.  Unconditional, never-ending love.  This does not mean just let the other person walk all over you and do whatever they want whenever they want.  This means both people do things to make life better for both of them.  It is important in any relationship to build your time together on a foundation of faith.  There will be times when each of you will need to lean on the Lord in prayer as each of you will have your moments when self will try to take over.  Be strong together and God will watch over your life.  Today my wife and I are celebrating 23 years in marriage, we were joined in marriage by God and nothing will keep us apart.  We have had to fight some battles and we continue to get stronger as we go because we both know that there is nobody who will love us like we do each other.  I am thankful for every day God gives us together.  May you find God’s love and joy in your relationships.

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

Romans 12:9-13

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

The Joy Of Faith

The true form of joy comes from believing and knowing that the Lord your God created you out of love, knows the about the deepest part of you and will never leave you or abandon you.  Faith has been and is the only thing that can overcome sadness, darkness and sin.  Jesus came down from heaven and showed the power of faith by His actions and His sacrifice.  He defeated sickness and illness, He defeated the devil in the desert, and He defeated death.  He did it all for you and He did it out of His love…and that is why true joy is found only in Faith and nowhere else on earth.  May you find joy in God’s peace and love.

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“Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”

1 Peter 1:8-9

(This photo was taken in June of 2016 at a lake near Plymouth, Minnesota)

Bring Your Burdens To The Lord

When something is weighing you down, constantly causing angst and worry, bring it to the Lord in prayer.  Our minds often deceive us that we can take care of things or just distract ourselves long enough and everything will be alright…yet that concern finds its way back to the forefront of our mind and if we are not careful we could continue this cycle endlessly.  When we come before the Lord in prayer and offer these worries up to Him and we trust in Him to guide us we can make our way forward.  We still have a role to play as we need to pay attention and listen for God’s guidance and then we will begin to see a change in that burden or belief.  God is always working for our good, we just need to talk with Him and get out of our own way.  May God’s peace be with you.

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“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

Matthew 11:28

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

Worship And Praise

Music is one of the ways I sit in praise and worship of our Lord.  We have so much to be thankful for in our lives.  Take time to be with the Lord.  Some times it is just sitting and listening to songs of praise like one of these…

10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord) – Matt Redman

What A Beautiful Name – Hillsong Worship

I encourage you whatever you do and wherever you go to sense His presence the most, go to that place and thank God for all you have and all He has done and then invite Him to guide you going forward…He is always there waiting for you and He will never leave you.  May God’s love, joy and peace be with you.

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“The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love.  The Lord is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made.”

Psalm 145:8-9

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

Parenthood

When life on earth begins we are completely dependent on loving parents to care for us, feed us, hold us and watch over us.  As time goes by and the phases of life change a child begins to learn about interacting with others in the world, all the while the father and or mother each offer their unique perspective based mostly upon their own experience with their parents.  The generations go on…unfortunately the family structure has been under attack by darkness and evil for a long time now and in today’s society the vast majority of people are ruled by selfishness and they show little respect for family or parents mainly because of how people who are given the gift of children have not honored their role of parenthood.  When we become parents, we should be prepared to sacrifice things in order to help a child become a contributing adult in community.  One of the greatest joys of parenthood is watching your child succeed and do well because you were willing to have patience and willing to be persistent in doing what God has asked you to do with the gift of a child.  We are all God’s children and He is patient and persistent in loving us.  We would do well to pass it on.  May God’s peace be with you.

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“Train a child in the way they should go, and when they are old they will not turn from it.”

Proverbs 22:6

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

True Peace

There is only one way to find real peace while living on earth.  There is only one who is our Savior, who gave himself up for us so that we may have life.  There was no bargaining…He didn’t say I will do this for you if…He did it because He loves us unconditionally.  In all the world and in all of human history you can only find true peace in Christ Jesus.

Several years ago I was a chaperon for a lock-in with the youth at the church…we were playing a game through out the church, I forget the name, but if your got caught during the game you had to go to prison.  While in prison you would compete against others in bible trivia…if you answered correctly you were free to leave.  One young lady decided early on no matter what the question, she had one answer…Jesus.  She would say it quickly and excitedly even before I could finish reading the question…I would read ‘What was the name, Jesus! she would say…it seems she had figured out faith more quickly than most of us.  No matter what questions or situations you are facing in your life the only answer is…Jesus!

May God’s peace be with you.

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“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”

1 Peter 5:7

(This photo was taken in June of 2016 at a lake near Minneapolis, Minnesota)