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It is not just 'full-speed ahead'

Maybe life is a little complicated for us right now - every day brings new reports of worsening pandemic, more loss of life, riots, disagreements, and the list goes on. Why would we ever want to leave the safety of our homes? We have all experienced those moments when the "mess" of our present "muddled circumstances" seems like more than enough to handle - then along comes someone telling us to get "deeper" into the "muddle"! I think we all probably might have responded similarly to the one who tells us to get ourselves into a deeper muddle - it probably went something like, "Are you nuts! Things are more than I can handle right here and you want me to do what?" Hey, this is not a new response! In fact, there is are tons of similar ones recorded in the Bible - I think God doesn't want us to think we are alone in this muddle! But David's men said, "We live in fear of our lives right here in Judah. How can you think of go
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Let it go

But now you have arrived at your destination: By faith in Christ you are in direct relationship with God. Your baptism in Christ was not just washing you up for a fresh start. It also involved dressing you in an adult faith wardrobe—Christ’s life, the fulfillment of God’s original promise. In Christ’s family there can be no division into Jew and non-Jew, slave and free, male and female. Among us you are all equal. That is, we are all in a common relationship with Jesus Christ. (Galatians 3:26-28 MSG) No division - no WE/THEY. In Christ's family there can be no division. Let that one sink in a moment. Take even two minutes to think about the present circumstances in our nation and you will realize there is even more division and 'divisiveness' these days than ever. We have families and friends 'divided' over this pandemic - divided over if it is real or is it a hoax? We have neighbors within communities 'divided' over which 'lives matter'. We have a

Under God

Pushed to the wall, I called to God; from the wide open spaces, he answered. God’s now at my side and I’m not afraid; who would dare lay a hand on me? God’s my strong champion; I flick off my enemies like flies. Far better to take refuge in God than trust in people; Far better to take refuge in God than trust in celebrities. Hemmed in by barbarians, in God’s name I rubbed their faces in the dirt; Hemmed in and with no way out, in God’s name I rubbed their faces in the dirt; Like swarming bees, like wild prairie fire, they hemmed me in; in God’s name I rubbed their faces in the dirt. I was right on the cliff-edge, ready to fall, when God grabbed and held me. God’s my strength, he’s also my song, and now he’s my salvation. Hear the shouts, hear the triumph songs in the camp of the saved? “The hand of God has turned the tide! The hand of God is raised in victory! The hand of God has turned the tide!” (Psalm 118:5-6 MSG) Sometimes I feel like I have been 'pushed to the wall' - pin

Going all in

So roll up your sleeves, put your mind in gear, be totally ready to receive the gift that’s coming when Jesus arrives. Don’t lazily slip back into those old grooves of evil, doing just what you feel like doing. You didn’t know any better then; you do now. As obedient children, let yourselves be pulled into a way of life shaped by God’s life, a life energetic and blazing with holiness. God said, “I am holy; you be holy.” (I Peter 1:15-16) We are faith-filled risk-takers intent on being holy as our God is holy. Does that describe you? We all come to Christ exactly as we are - none of us is better than any other person - all are able to be faith-filled risk-takers intent on being holy IN CHRIST JESUS. We receive this gift of 'new life' and almost without us realizing it, do you know what God does within us? He 'pulls us into a way of life shaped by god's life'. Now that should make all of us more than just a little bit hopeful, my friends. We have been given a gift we

At the end of it all

What do your 'treasures' reveal about you? About your focus in life? About who or what you consider to be important? Did you realize what you treasure most is a good indication of where you will invest the greatest amount of your time and talent? If your 'treasure' is in your family, you likely spend a great deal of time with members of your family, helping them to complete tasks, enjoying leisure pursuits together, and even just 'hanging' in front of the screen watching a good movie at times. If your 'treasure' is in your career, you likely invest a great deal of time, talent, and sometimes even money into that career. You better your education, so you are more proficient at what it is your are doing, looking for the next big move you can make to stay relevant and 'in demand' within your job market. If you don't know where your 'treasure' is, look at where you spend the majority of your time, or focus the greatest part of your attent

We all hide, now seek

If you ever played that childhood game of 'hide and seek', you are probably aware someone is given the task of 'finding' and the others are given the task of 'hiding'. The challenge was to find the 'best' hiding place so you didn't get found. Back in the day, we had a great neighborhood for hiding - lots and lots of really well-concealed hiding spots on my property and the two that adjoined it. We had 13 citrus trees, a huge mulberry tree, and two pretty impressive sized junipers in my yard alone - not to mention the chicken coop, the fenced in pool area, shrubs, shed, and the like. All provided ample hiding space for one who could scurry up the trunk, duck behind a wall or two, or into the cover of the leaves fast enough. As I recall all the places I hid, none was as safe as the place I run to now! I run to the safety of God's arms. Today, it isn't so much that I am playing a childhood game of 'hiding' as much as I find I am 'h

BE strong

There are days when I feel ever so grateful and aware of each breath, each rhythmic thump of my heart, and each wisp of air as it gently passes through my hair. As I am on the 'back-half' of my life now, I think I fully appreciate each morning I awaken without an ache or pain bothering me, find my blood pressure within normal range, or just simply start the day with a leisurely pace. There haven't been many of these moments, but I have had a couple of those "life or death" moments - car spinning out of control on an icy roadway, or even narrowly missing a multiple car pile up because I was able to pull up onto an embankment quickly. Perhaps we get too caught up in life at times to even realize the type of fight we are really in - more moments than we might imagine as "life or death" occurring all around us. In the moments we take to actually pause long enough to look around, we often discover we are in the fight of our life! God is strong, and he wants