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Archive for July, 2014

The church which fails to recognize the dangers in ignoring scriptural teaching is headed for trouble.

Pastor Bill

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Learn to live up to the expectations God has for you.

Pastor Bill

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Ouch! I must have chosen the hardest piece of “real estate” in the Cascades to sleep on during the night! It seemed as if every muscle in my body was complaining as I pulled the folds of the parachute away from my face and gazed at my surroundings in the pre-dawn light. I shivered as my breath fogged out in front of my face. Say, now, it was just a bit cool this morning!

I rose up on one elbow to get a better look. Though it would not be long before the sun crawled up over the horizon to the east, the moon was still high in the sky to the west, large and bright, appearing to be in no great hurry to let go of its place of prominence as this day was beginning. From my vantage point on the high, narrow ridge, I was able to look down into a deep canyon to the west where patches of mist lay silently among the high tree tops. A nearby squirrel began to chatter nosily and was quickly answered by one of his friends or relatives a short distance away. I wondered if they were discussing the two intruders who had spent the night in their mountaintop domain.

My partner, lying on the other side of a fallen tree from me, began to stir as I sat up. I wondered if he was as uncomfortable as I was. A loud grown followed by several uncomplimentary comments about the ground answered my question. I threw the parachute away from me and stood up, stretching my arms and legs to loosen them up. Yesterday had been a hard one! Hopefully, this day would prove to be much easier and a good deal more pleasant.

As the sun crept over the horizon the gray of the approaching dawn began to be pushed aside and was soon replaced by the sharp, bright colors found in this small corner of God’s creation. The sunlight bathed everything in its light and warmth. In a few minutes we began to pack our parachutes away in preparation for leaving this mountain. Say, could I ever have enjoyed a warm, cleansing shower and a hot breakfast of bacon and eggs, right about then! The thought came to me that maybe—just maybe—if we could find a quick and easy route off this rocky precipice, I could have what I was craving.

We walked a few feet away from where we had been sleeping and looked down over a high rocky cliff. It was obvious that it had been in our best interests to stop the night before, without attempting to go further. We would have been flirting with serious injury, or possibly even death, if we had continued in our attempt to walk out of the mountains after dark. Now, in the light of day, we were able to find a game trail and begin to wind our way down from the ridge top into the canyon below us. Our travel was reasonably easy and was a “piece of cake,” compared to what we had gone through the night before!

As we descended deeper into the canyon, we left the sun behind us for a time—it would catch up! We stopped for a break and as our heavy and rapid breathing slowed and became quieter we realized we could hear water running. Great! A drink of fresh, clean and cold mountain stream water was just what we needed! It seemed like a long time since we had enjoyed fresh water—and all that we might want! We shifted our heavy packs around on our shoulders, trying to find a somewhat more comfortable position for the burden we carried, and continued our slow descent into the canyon.

In a short time we found we were approaching some low brush, but it slowed our progress only a little. The sound of water was much louder now, and soon we were able to see it sparkling through the trees ahead of us as the rushing stream flowed and tumbled over rocks and fallen trees. Moments later we were standing at its side. It was a little wider and deeper than we might have expected but we soon found a large fallen tree that stretched from one side to the other. We found some sticks to help us keep our balance and, one after the other, walked slowly across the fallen tree to the other side of the rushing water. Once on the other side we set our heavy packs down on what was clearly a man-made trail. Hooray! We had finally found signs of civilization!

We stepped to the edge of the stream and drank to our hearts content, the water so cold it made out throats ache. When we had our fill, we stepped back onto the trail and slumped down, leaning back against our packs. As we rested, the sun finally reached a point high enough in the sky where this low spot in the canyon could begin to enjoy its touch. It was still a bit cool in this location. The warmth of the sun felt grand!

Psalm 65:8-9 remind us that “Those living far away fear your wonders; where morning dawns and evening fades you call forth songs of joy. You care for the land and water it; you enrich it abundantly….”

As I considered these words I was reminded, again, of how very good God is to those who love Him—to those who call Him, Lord. When we cease our stumbling around in the darkness of sin, and invite Jesus to forgive us of all the rotten things in our past, and come into our hearts, then the morning dawns upon our lives where the Son provides the light for every step we take. Sure, we may experience some days filled with hardship and nights when sleep does not come easily, yet, we can rest assured that the light and warmth of our Heavenly Father’s love and presence reaches into the lowest places in life we may be walking through. As we are told in Psalm 30:5, “Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning” (New Living Translation)

Prayer: Lord, we are so thankful for the reality that you do lead us through life; you will never leave us nor forsake us. Thank you! In your Son’s Name we pray. Amen

Pastor Bill

 

 

Unless otherwise noted, Scriptures are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.™  Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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May God help us to be so sensitive to his leading, guiding, direction and the continual whispering of his Spirit, that we do not find ourselves ever slipping into a spiritual famine.

Pastor Bill

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You can’t have any resentment or bitterness towards others and still be at peace with God and with yourself. It can’t happen! Ask God’s forgiveness, and His help to forgive others. He will do it!

Pastor Bill

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If God is calling you to do something you think you could never do, remember that God never calls people to fail! He will help you do it!

Pastor Bill

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If you continue to be reminded of your sins, be aware that God does not remember them. Therefore, it is Satan who keeps throwing them in your face.

Pastor Bill

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