Be Still…Wait For The Lord

“Be still before the Lord
    and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when people succeed in their ways,
    when they carry out their wicked schemes.

Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
    do not fret—it leads only to evil.
For those who are evil will be destroyed,
    but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land.”

Psalm 37:7-9 NIV

Be Still And Know by Amy Grant

DSC_1625 publish

“I remain confident of this:
    I will see the goodness of the Lord
    in the land of the living.
14 Wait for the Lord;
    be strong and take heart
    and wait for the Lord.”

Psalm 27:13-14 NIV

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

Seek First His Kingdom

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.”

Matthew 7:7-8 NIV

Living a life with faith first…it sounds so simple, yet living in this fallen world it is often hard to do.  The bible is a great guide for life…the world will tell you it is not…there are those who believe it is an outdated book filled with stories that are more like fairy tales…that the world is so different now than when it was written that it is not applicable to life today.  That is exactly what Satan wants us to think.  The fact is the bible is the truth, based on actual events and it is the Word of God…take time to read it every day and it will change your life.

DSC07415 publish

So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Matthew 6:31-34 NIV

(This photo was taken in June of 2013 while driving in northern Colorado)

Stay Close To The Word Of God

God has breathed life into all Scripture. It is useful for teaching us what is true. It is useful for correcting our mistakes. It is useful for making our lives whole again. It is useful for training us to do what is right. 17 By using Scripture, the servant of God can be completely prepared to do every good thing.”

2 Timothy 3:16-17 NIRV

We are often easily distracted…taking our eyes off of Jesus and focusing on things we can’t control.  Much like Peter who stepped out of the boat to walk on the water by faith (Matthew 14:22-33)…we learn that as soon as he took his focus off of Jesus, Peter began to sink.  The first step of putting our faith in Jesus is extremely important that is how we get started on our faith journey…yet the next steps are just as important, keeping our eyes on Him, even when, especially when the winds of evil and darkness blow strongly against us.  Keep God’s Word close to you and within your heart.

DSC09023 publish

“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.”

Psalm 119:105 NIV

(This photo was taken in May of 2014 at a lake in central Minnesota)

Listening

“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. 21 Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.

22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”

James 1:19-22 NIV

Listening is a skill we all need to use more often and a way of communicating that could get us much closer to peace in our life.  If we were better at listening there would be less divorce and broken families…if we were better at listening there would be less violence and crime as hate and anger would not be stirred up so quickly.  Listening involves taking time to understand what the other person is saying, it involves empathy.  It means not being so quick to respond with your own will and desires as first priority…it takes humility to really listen…it takes a willingness to admit we don’t have all the answers.  Think about recent interactions in your life…when are you hearing and when are you listening?  I know I can do better.  Lastly, communicating with God takes more than just talking, if we are doing all the talking in prayer when do we take the time to listen to Him?  May we all be blessed with courage and humility to listen better.  Amen.

DSC_0604 publish

“Show me your ways, O Lord, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.”

Psalm 25:4-5 NIV

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

Believe…Overcome

Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves the father loves his child as well. This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands.”

1 John 5:1-2 NIV

Believe in Jesus Christ, confess your sins and seek Him.  He is the Way…He is with you and He will strengthen you to overcome anything in your life.  Trust in the Lord and you will find peace.  Amen.

DSC_0229 publish

In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.”

1 John 5:3-5 NIV

(This photo was taken in July of 2021 at Bear Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado)

God Is Love

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.”

1 John 4:8 NIV

Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.”

1 John 4:11 NIV

It has been said that in order for people to receive and understand a message they must see/hear it a minimum of three times…may these verses help each of us to know and understand God is Love.  May God’s peace be with you.  Amen.

DSC_0176 (2) publish

“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.

19 We love because he first loved us. 20 Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen. 21 And he has given us this command: Anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister.”

1 John 4:16-21 NIV

(This photo was taken in July of 2021 in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado)

Power In The Name Of Jesus

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
    and gave him the name that is above every name,
10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
    in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
    to the glory of God the Father.”

Philippians 2:9-11 NIV

When life is difficult and frustrating, where do we get the ability to move forward?  What could possibly renew us?  What makes some people so resilient?  It has been my experience that there is only one thing powerful enough to lift us up out of any tragedy or trial…and His name is Jesus.  A relationship with Jesus Christ in the way to strength in the battle and rest when we are weary.  To experience His presence, we must do our part and be willing to spend time in devotions and prayer building our relationship with Him.  God made a promise, He will never leave you nor forsake you and He always keeps His promises.  Invite Jesus into your heart and into your life daily and you will be renewed each day.  May God’s peace be with you.  Amen.

There Is Power by Lincoln Brewster

DSC_1250 publish

“The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.”

Proverbs 18:10 NIV

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 in Mount Rainier National Park in Washington)

Follow Jesus

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

John 14:6 NIV

Commitment…dedication…devotion…faithfulness.  The faith journey is more than a one time decision to invite Jesus Christ into your heart and life…that is absolutely the right first step.  The journey continues and spiritual growth occurs with a daily giving of ourselves to the will of God for our lives.  It is prayer about everything, it is learning to let go of those things we cannot control.  It is about learning to accept the love and forgiveness of God in your heart and mind and then turning outward toward others to share that truth in service and kindness.  My prayer is for all of us to follow Jesus each day.  After all, He gave all He had of His life in this world to save us.  Amen.

DSC_0084 publish

“Then he said to them all:  If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”

Luke 9:23 NIV

(This photo was taken in October of 2018 at City Park in Winterset, Iowa)

Wisdom

“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”

James 1:5 NIV

“But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.”

James 3:17 NIV

Seek the wisdom of God in all things.  All good things come from God and the Kingdom of God is upside down from the world’s perspective.  Take time to learn from Jesus and spend time reading God’s Word.  Gather with others who are encouraging…for we will not find what we are looking for in worldly wisdom.

DSC07425 publish

“But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.”

John 14:26 NIV

(This photo was taken in June of 2013 in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado)

To Know Him…

For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives,[a] 10 so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, 12 and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you[b] to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light.”

Colossians 1:9-12 NIV

From the very beginning God created us out of his love.  As we try to find satisfaction and happiness in worldly things we will come to find that only by God’s grace will we find true joy and peace in life.  Wisdom is found in spending more time with God and less time on social media and watching news shows.  The more we know Him rather then just know about Him…our eyes are opened and the better we begin to understand that we are broken, sinful people in need of a Savior and Jesus Christ is our Redeemer.

DSC09023 publish

 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”

Colossians 1:13-14 NIV

(This photo was taken in May of 2014 at a lake in central Minnesota)