Surrender

What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.”

James 4:1-3 NIV

When we pursue goals to satisfy the self, we will become frustrated and disappointed…wondering why things don’t go our way.  We must learn to surrender our desires for what God has planned.  He can see everything; we can only see a small part of our lives.  This doesn’t mean do nothing…our job is to learn from God’s Word and keep doing good things as best we can with what we have been given.  Submit whatever you do to the Lord and you will find peace.  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. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.”

James 4:7-10 NIV

(This photo was taken in July of 2019 at a lake in northwestern Wisconsin)

Turn Towards God

Taste and see that the Lord is good;
    blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.”

Psalm 34:8 NIV

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.”

Psalms 37:3-4 NIV

Don’t go your own way…come near to God.  Trust His way and most importantly His timing.  The world pushes us to be impatient and to seek immediate gratification…this is the work of evil.  Set aside self-serving desires and learn about God’s promises.  Turn towards God and put your hope in Him and you will know peace.

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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. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.”

James 4:7-10 NIV

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

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)

Surrender

Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. 24 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it.”

Luke 9:23-24 NIV

God doesn’t need us to make the plans and try to control the outcomes…and frankly living this way often leads to disappointment and frustration.  I read some place last summer these words…God does not need our help or cooperation in establishing purpose in our lives…only our surrender.  This is true, we need to remember that God is with us and within us always and at all times…instead of thinking He is only near when we pay attention or recognize His presence.  What or how do you need to surrender to God?

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“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”

Galatians 2:20 NIV

(This photo was taken in July of 2019 at a lake near Plymouth, Minnesota)

With God In Control…

“I can do all things through [a]Christ who strengthens me.”

Philippians 4:13 NIV

We can be conquerors of sin…we can overcome obstacles…we can be blessed with wisdom to find our way. If we are willing to cast our worries and burdens on Him and trust His love for us anything is possible. There is nothing that can separate us from God’s love and God’s plan for us. Believe and you will receive.  Amen.

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“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”

Romans 8:37 NIV

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

Surrender…Be Transformed

And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. 24 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it.”

Luke 9:23-24 NIV

“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”

Galatians 2:20 NIV

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Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Romans 12:1-2 NIV

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

It Takes Courage…

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Joshua 1:9 NIV

Courage is not the absence of fear…Courage is the willingness to move forward without knowing the outcome…to admit we don’t know the answers…to be patient…to share and be vulnerable with another person.  Having courage is placing your trust in God ahead of fear…it is about not allowing fear to stop you or defeat you.  It takes courage to seek the Light…to surrender your plans for God’s plan…it takes courage to live the life that God has intended for you…and where can you find courage?  In a relationship with Jesus Christ.  There you will find strength and courage to seek His will and live with hope from God.  Amen.

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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 NIV

(This photo was taken in July of 2018 on Lake Superior near the Apostle Islands)

Surrender and Rest

This post was originally published in November of 2021…

Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. 24 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it.”

Luke 9:23-24 NIV

The more we try to take control and hold on tight to all circumstances the more life slips through our fingers.  We were never meant to carry all of our burdens alone; we are not meant to fix everything or try to get things to meet our expectations.  God doesn’t need us to define our purpose in life, only our surrender to bring us to it.  Turn towards Him and daily give yourself to His way in your life.  Trust the Lord with everything.  Amen.

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“Come to me, all you who are tired and are carrying heavy loads. I will give you rest. 29 Become my servants and learn from me. I am gentle and free of pride. You will find rest for your souls. 30 Serving me is easy, and my load is light.”

Matthew 11:28-30 NIRV

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

Surrender and Rest

Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. 24 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it.”

Luke 9:23-24 NIV

The more we try to take control and hold on tight to all circumstances the more life slips through our fingers.  We were never meant to carry all of our burdens alone; we are not meant to fix everything or try to get things to meet our expectations.  God doesn’t need us to define our purpose in life, only our surrender to bring us to it.  Turn towards Him and daily give yourself to His way in your life.  Trust the Lord with everything.  Amen.

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“Come to me, all you who are tired and are carrying heavy loads. I will give you rest. 29 Become my servants and learn from me. I am gentle and free of pride. You will find rest for your souls. 30 Serving me is easy, and my load is light.”

Matthew 11:28-30 NIRV

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

Trust In The Lord

This post was originally published in October of 2020…

“I will praise the Lord, who counsels me;
    even at night my heart instructs me.
I keep my eyes always on the Lord.
    With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.

Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;
    my body also will rest secure,
10 because you will not abandon me to the realm of the dead,
    nor will you let your faithful[a] one see decay.
11 You make known to me the path of life;
    you will fill me with joy in your presence,
    with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”

Psalm 16:7-11 NIV

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The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
    my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
    my shield[a] and the horn[b] of my salvation, my stronghold.”

Psalm 18:2 NIV

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