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Archive for February, 2014

Close friends, truly close friends, have earned the right to say some very pointed things to us.

Pastor Bill

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Each and every person has the capacity for greatness in God’s eyes!

Pastor Bill

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As the world grows darker, the light of God grows brighter!

Pastor Bill

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My friend, Robert, and I stood in the snow-covered roadway, looking across the small stream into the timber covered area on the other bank. As I think back over the years, I am not quite certain what it may have been that triggered the next part of this episode. For some reason, we determined that we needed to get across the stream and over to the other side. Maybe we saw something beneath the low-hanging branches of the tall cedar trees that stood on that small, flat area on the other side of the stream. But, for whatever reason, we decided we wanted to get over there! In looking back, I am not sure that was the smartest decision the two of us made that day!

The small river was not all that deep, especially at this time of year when portions of its surface were covered with ice and a layer of fluffy snow. But, we weren’t about to go wading in that cold, icy water. Yet, there was that big old pine tree that had fallen across the stream and, even with a layer of snow on it, we apparently decided that was to be our bridge to the other side. We would just have to go slowly and very carefully.

Looking back downstream to where the large pine tree lay, the river seemed to be quite a bit wider, but that was alright. The tree was a big one and we were confident in our ability to walk across it. We would just push the snow off of it as we went along. We had a brief but lively discussion on who would go first, and I lost—or maybe I won. In any case, Robert would go first.

He scrambled through the snow around the roots of the tree that were now sticking upward at the edge of the road, right next to the stream. I realized Robert would have to be the one cleaning the snow off the trunk of the tree as he went over the water. Better him than me, I decided, though and don’t remember that I told him that!

After a few grunts and groans he finally worked his way past the roots of the tree and was standing in the snow on top of the trunk of the tree. He looked around at me and said, “Well, here goes!”

Robert then turned and faced forward and began scooting slowly along with his large boots shoving the several inches of snow off the surface of the log. It didn’t take him too long and he was out of the water. Suddenly he stopped and, without turning around said, “I don’t know about this. I’m starting to have second thoughts!”

I wasn’t surprised. In fact, my friend was probably shaking in his boots just about then. He was standing directly over the cold water, and it soon became obvious he didn’t want to keep going. The other side of the stream seemed a good distance away. He was just barely maintaining his balance, it appeared, and didn’t seem to know how he might be able to turn around. That snow-covered tree trunk was not the most hospitable place at the moment! It reminds me of a verse out of the Old Testament Book of Psalms where King David was going through a difficult time and he said, “I am losing all hope; I am paralyzed with fear.” (Psalm 145:4)

I think my friend, Robert, might have been able to relate to that statement at the moment! And if you keep reading in that chapter of Psalms you find David saying things like the following: “Come quickly, Lord, and answer me, for my depression deepens. Don’t turn away from me, or I will die. . . . Show me where to walk, for I give myself to you. . . . May your gracious Spirit lead me forward on a firm footing. For the glory of your name, O Lord, preserve my life. Because of your faithfulness, bring me out of this distress” (Psalm 145:7, 8, 10-11).

I’m not sure Robert was praying that kind of a prayer as he stood on the tree, just above the surface of that cold water moving past beneath him. But I am sure he was wishing he was back with both feet planted securely in the middle of the road, like mine were!

Prayer: Lord, thank you for the reality that, whenever we find ourselves in a tough spot in life, sometimes with no obvious answer to the challenges we are facing, we can call out to you. Thank you for always being there, always being faithful and always ready to help us. Thank you for your willingness to walk with us through the “deep waters” of life, or sometimes over them! Thank you, Lord. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.

Pastor Bill

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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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Keep your salvation up to date. Don’t get lax or careless about it.

Pastor Bill

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“Don’t ever rush into the presence of God.” ~ Dr. Gordon Wetmore

Pastor Bill

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Christian, don’t allow yourself to ever fall into the trap of thinking you are beyond the need for confession and forgiveness.

Pastor Bill

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