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Archive for September, 2012

With Jesus we have a choice. We can attempt to subdue Him and keep Him out of our lives; or we can welcome Him in. That choice has eternal consequences.

Pastor Bill

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We might crush Jesus under years of indifference, prayerlessness and lack of interest. But He is always ready and willing to accept us when we come to Him.

Pastor Bill

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Has God been more patient with me than I am with those around me? It’s something to consider.

Pastor Bill

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CAMP COFFEE

I lay in my sleeping bag, peering out at the beginning of this new day. My partner was still snoring away, oblivious to the beauty surrounding us on this new morning. After several minutes I concluded it was time for action and left the warmth of the sleeping bag to climb into clothing that was filthy and smelled strongly of smoke. Hopefully we would get to experience a hot shower before this day was over.

I pulled on the jacket from my jump suit for a little protection from the chill in the air and moved over to what appeared to be a good spot to build a breakfast fire. I gathered dry twigs and branches from beneath a tall white fir tree and in a matter of minutes had a nice little fire blazing away. Its warmth felt mighty good on this particular morning. I knew that it would warm up plenty by the middle of the day but, right now, that little fire was the real deal. I pulled an old coffee can out of my gear and filled it with water from a gallon jug that we had brought along with us. After the water had begun to boil steadily, I measured out what I thought was an appropriate amount of coffee and dropped it into the can. Say, now! This was going to be real “camp coffee!”

I heard a groan from the direction of my partner and saw that he was moving around in his sleeping bag. He poked his head out and rose up on one elbow to look at me. “What time is it?” he asked.

“Time to get up,” I responded. “In fact, the day is half gone. You best roll out of the sack!”

He responded with an unintelligible mutter and began to pull himself out into the brisk, early morning air.

“Brr! It’s freezin’!” he yelled. “This is crazy! Tell me when the coffee’s hot.” With that he slid back into his sleeping bag.

“What a wimp!” I hollered back at him. “You’ll probably still be laying there when I have left for civilization. I’ll think about you when I am enjoying steak and eggs this evening. On second thought, maybe I won’t think of you!”

The good-natured bantering went on between us for several minutes until I told my partner the coffee was about ready. “I’m not serving you coffee in bed this morning. If you want any, you gotta’ come and get it!” I said.

“Okay, okay,” his muffled voice spoke from inside his bag. “What a friend you are!”

Ah, yes—friends. We all need a close friend or two that we enjoy being around and having conversations such as I and my jump partner were having on that cool summer morning. The word “friend” is found often within the pages of the Bible. The Apostle Paul spoke to and about his friends often. In the New Testament book of Romans, in chapter 5, verse 11 the word “friends” is used in an intriguing way: “So now we can rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God because our Lord Jesus Christ has made us friends of God.”

That is something to mull over in our minds—the truth that you and I can be friends of God when we have invited Jesus to take charge of our lives. When we ask Jesus to forgive us of our sins and come into our hearts, an immediate relationship is established with the Heavenly Father—God. We become his friend! And that friendship grows and develops from that point onward. Just think about that…….you and I can be friends with God! It is hard to imagine, but it’s the truth!

Prayer: Lord, thank you for the reality of the fact that I can be friends with you. It seems like too much to even imagine, yet, I believe the Bible and the truths within its pages. Therefore, I can claim you as my friend. Thank you, Lord. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.

Pastor Bill

 

 

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996, 2004. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.

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God is patient. We see that demonstrated in Scripture time and time again. Thank you, Lord!

Pastor Bill

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Don’t be the kind of a person who always has the right answer, but not the right action.

Pastor Bill

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There are people who rarely speak about the great things they are doing for the Lord, but if you looked closely at their lives you would see convincing proof that their lives demonstrate Christ’s love. Such folks are great examples for all of us.

Pastor Bill

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God does not care about our past, except in relationship to our sins.

Pastor Bill

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A BRAND NEW DAY

Ooohie! Say, now, it had become downright cold during the night! I poked my head out of the sleeping bag and could see that there was beginning to be just a hint of light over the tops of the pine and fir trees on the east side of the meadow. There were still plenty of stars painting the sky overhead so it was going to be a while yet before I needed to roll out of my sleeping bag. But I was cold! In fact, I realized I could see my breath! Man, I had to get warmed up. I gave an involuntary shiver as I unzipped my bag enough to where I could get my arms out and begin rummaging in my gear bag for an old sweatshirt I had begun packing with me for just such an occasion. It took several minutes before I found it, at the bottom of the bag. By the time I had pulled it over my head I was really getting cold. And this was supposed to be summer!

Before I scooted down into the sleeping bag, I grabbed folds of the cargo parachute canopy that I had placed my air mattress on, and pulled as much of the nylon as possible over the top of me. I was finally ready and slid back down into the warmer temperature of my bag, and zipped it up. I groaned a bit as I pulled my knees up and wrapped my arms around them. Now was one of those times it would have been nice to be laying next to a blazing campfire.

As I finally began to get warmed up I realized my partner was apparently oblivious to the cold temperatures. His snoring signaled that he was apparently doing just fine. I pulled the top of the sleeping bag more tightly around my head, took another look at the beauty of the sky overhead, and closed my eyes. Sleep took some time in coming but, as I began to awaken the next time, I realized daylight had arrived. I blinked open my eyes and saw the sun glowing on the mountainside above us on the far side of the meadow. What a beautiful morning. There just is simply nothing quite like the early mornings in the mountains! It was the beginning of a brand new day!

Such reminiscing takes me to the Old Testament book of Lamentations. In chapter 3, beginning with verse 21, we find these inspiring words: “Yet I still dare to hope when I remember this: The faithful love of the Lord never ends!His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning. I say to myself, The Lord is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!”

Each day God gives us is a brand new day with endless possibilities. When you begin each day with your Heavenly Father, you can walk into it trusting that He will be your constant companion and friend—no matter what! So walk with God!

Prayer: Lord, thank you for the words of inspiration and encouragement that you provide us in your Word! What a blessing to have you speak to us through the scriptures. Thank you for the truth that you will walk with me throughout each new day. With Jesus as my Lord and Savior, I never walk alone. Never! In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.

Pastor Bill

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996, 2004. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.

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One’s intentions for the future have more power to shape a person’s future than his/her experiences of the past.

Pastor Bill

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