Wait For The Lord

Portions of this post were originally published in September of 2018…

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.
24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion;
    therefore I will wait for him.”

Lamentations 3:22-24 NIV

Our lives are usually so busy moving from one thing to the next, that planning and preparing become dominant activities…the thing is if we are always planning and preparing for what’s next when are we living in the present moment?  A difficult part of surrender for all of us is not always trying to control what’s next.  A life of faith doesn’t mean we always go and do what we want…Jesus said in Luke 9:23 “…If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”  

We all have a cross to bear in life, it is different for everyone…and bearing a cross is doing what we should be doing, doing what needs to be done.  It means being obedient to God and we do these things because of love.  Be in prayer and talk with the Lord about what He needs you to do then wait and listen.  May you be surrounded by the love of God each day.  Amen.

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“The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord,”

Lamentations 3:25-26 NIV

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

Goodness

Portions of this post were originally published in December of 2018…

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

This is one of the Fruits of the Spirit.  In our dictionaries it is defined as ‘the quality and state of being good.’  I see it as a summary word…things that go into goodness can include…being helpful, selfless, supportive, kind, generous, a good listener or serving the needs of others.  There are several ways to express goodness in our everyday life.  It is up to us to choose an attitude that will reflect goodness in our actions and our behaviors.  I pray we all tune into the Holy Spirit living within us and seek goodness and righteousness wherever we are in life and the world.  Here is a quote associated to John Wesley that speaks about doing good:

“Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as ever you can.”

John Wesley

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“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.”

Matthew 5:6 NIV

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

Humility And Patience

Portions of this post were published in December of 2020…

“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

What we need in the world more than ever is less “look at me” thinking and more of a “how can I help you” way of life.  Think about your daily life and what you do…how much is to serve just yourself and how much includes serving a community or group of people.  The best way to work on making this change in your life is to have time every day with God and His Word…reading, prayer and listening time with the One who is with you, loves you and wants to be a part of your daily life.  Turn towards the Lord, seek to learn about Him and He can lead you to humility and peace.  Amen.

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“The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”

2 Peter 3:9 NIV

(This photo was taken in May of 2020 along the North Shore of Lake Superior)

Freedom Isn’t Free

This post was originally published in May of 2019…

Freedom requires humility, sacrifice and a willingness to put the needs of many before one.  Freedom is the result of human beings working together for a common cause…not by shouting and trying to tear others down.  Freedom is earned through courage and a belief in something greater than self.  Jesus Christ is the one who provided the example of sacrifice and the willingness to forgive…we all would do well to read about Him and His example of love.  Time to put down the flaming arrows of hate and to serve one another in love.

Thank you God, for all the people who serve and have served in the military services of this country…thank you for their willingness to put themselves in the line of fire so others can prosper.  I give thanks for them and their families that sacrifice so much in the name of freedom for all of us.  Amen.

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“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.  Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.”

Philippians 2:3-4 NIV

(This photo was taken in June of 2013 at Mount Rushmore National Memorial)

Daily Living

You are God’s chosen people. You are holy and dearly loved. So put on tender mercy and kindness as if they were your clothes. Don’t be proud. Be gentle and patient. 13 Put up with one another. Forgive one another if you are holding something against someone. Forgive, just as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these good things put on love. Love holds them all together perfectly as if they were one.”

Colossians 3:12-14 NIRV

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Let the peace that Christ gives rule in your hearts. As parts of one body, you were appointed to live in peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the message about Christ live among you like a rich treasure. Teach and correct one another wisely. Teach one another by singing psalms and hymns and songs from the Spirit. Sing to God with thanks in your hearts. 17 Do everything you say or do in the name of the Lord Jesus. Always give thanks to God the Father through Christ.”

Colossians 3:15-17 NIRV

(This photo was taken in July of 2021 in the Black Hills in western South Dakota)

Humility

Being humble comes from having respect for the Lord.
    This will bring you wealth and honor and life.”

Proverbs 22:4 NIRV

“All those who lift themselves up will be made humble. And those who make themselves humble will be lifted up.”

Luke 14:11 NIRV

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You are God’s chosen people. You are holy and dearly loved. So put on tender mercy and kindness as if they were your clothes. Don’t be proud. Be gentle and patient. 13 Put up with one another. Forgive one another if you are holding something against someone. Forgive, just as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these good things put on love. Love holds them all together perfectly as if they were one.”

Colossians 3:12-14 NIRV

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

Our Hearts

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.”

Deuteronomy 6:5

Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
    bind them around your neck,
    write them on the tablet of your heart.”

Proverbs 3:3

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will make your paths straight.”[a]

Proverbs 3:5-6

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“But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”

1 Samuel 16:7

(This photo was taken in July of 2021 at a park near Sioux Falls, South Dakota)

The Spirit He Gave Us

Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God 22 and receive from him anything we ask, because we keep his commands and do what pleases him. 23 And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us. 24 The one who keeps God’s commands lives in him, and he in them. And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.”

1 John 3:21-24

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“This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit. 14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15 If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God. 16 And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.

God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. 17 This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. 18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.”

1 John 4:13-18

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

The Fruit Of The Spirit

“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”

Matthew 5:14-16

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But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.”

Galatians 5:22-23

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

Humility

Pride goes before destruction,
    a haughty spirit before a fall.”

Proverbs 16:18

Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.”

Philippians 2:1-4

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“…All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because,

“God opposes the proud
    but shows favor to the humble.”[a]

1 Peter 5:5

(This photo was taken in May of 2020 at the High Falls in Tettegouche State Park in northern Minnesota)