A place to find Hope

Tag: church

There Needs to be a Change in what we Think About

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I am very tired of reporting post after post, about rioting, looting, the Pandemic, shootings, wild fires, etc. It is hard, at best, to dicuss them.

What I want to do today is just give each of us hope and contentment. So if all of this is going on, how am I going to be able to do that??

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I have a huge amount of notes from church and books I have read. I am going to share some of them and let you decipher what they mean to you:

  1. If you still struggle with sin after you are saved, you are still saved. No one can take that away from you.
  2. C.S. Lewis once said, “We have to be against the world FOR the world.”
  3. We must rejoice no matter what we face.
  4. God rules! He is control of your destiny.
  5. Pray for the well being of those who have no thought of following the Lord.
  6. We are wine to God, and God breaking new ground in us. He is making new wine.
  7. Am I really comitted to God? Am I a true light that shines so others can see it?
  8. Our fear doesn’t stand a chance when we stand in God’s love.
  9. Wise in your own eyes, is worse than a fool. (proverbs)
  10. You come to a crossroad, one way is wisdom and the other is folly, which way would you choose?
  11. Like a river wash me over, and fill me to overflow with your love.
  12. Do not judge others. That is God’s job to do.
  13. During this awful time, think of those who have what they need.
  14. Break the walls around your heart.
  15. Jesus said, “Fear not!
  16. I will trust only you God.
  17. Am I just living, or am I living well?
  18. Am I trusting the Lord to lead me, or am I wanting to do it my way?
  19. Are you desparete to read Gods word? If not, why Not?
  20. Anger comes from envy.
  21. If I fall I am going to need all of you around me.
  22. In this world, some are rich, some are poor, some struggle with health, others are healthy. Some are sad, some are happy.
  23. We need to come together as one to reach out to others.
  24. If one of us suffers, we all suffer. If one is honored, we are all glad.
  25. The weight is not on you to prove you are worthy.

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I hope these notes and thoughts helped you in some way. Think about each statement and how it pertains to you.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

Stress is a Huge Part of Life These Days

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It has been very stressful the last six months. Where I live we add the wild fires to our stress. Hundreds of homes are gone. Millions of acres burnt. People have died.

We just got some news that arsonists started two of the deadly fires. Two people have been arrtested, and will face a long time in prison if anyone is killed.

The question is how will we be able to handle all of this. Besides the wild fires, there is the Pademic, rioting, looting, shootings, beatings, etc. Pretty overwhelming for a every day Joe like me.

I was watching my church online yesterday, and our Pastor spoke to this very concern.

When a virus hits that attacks the vulnerable, isolates individuals, and shuts down the economy and schools. We can say, the harder it gets the better I live. 

When protests stop being peaceful, when elections become polarizing, when families, friends, communities, and churches become divided. We say the harder it gets the better I live. 

When everything you own is burned to ash, when families flee for their lives, when the smoke makes the day night. We can say “the harder it gets the better I live. 

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Let me explain what he means.

His theme was God knows what to give us.

He is saying that God knows what is going on. He knows the dangers we are all facing. He knows what to give each of us ACCORDING TO OUR NEEDS.

Every person has different fears. Each person faces storms every day.

God doesn’t want us to compromise so He knows what to give us to help us face those who try to sway us.

What the thoughts are from the pastor is, we should know that the harder it gets the better we live. We are sons and daughters of God. He will not gives us more than we can handle.

He may give some peace. He may give others courage. He may give some knowedge to help others.

When it comes to your daily life; choose your battles carefully. Choose your friends wisely. Choose your solutions intentionally. Do not waver God has given you a path to take. Stay the course.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all….never, ever, give up!

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+If you like what you see, please subscribe at the top of this page where it says, “subscribe.” When you do, all future posts will come directly to your inbox. Also, if you know some else who could benefit for the site, please let them know about it. Your comments will not be seen by other people, just me, and I will connect with you to see if you are OK to share it.

It is Pretty Depressing to be in This World Right now

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It has been hard times here in Salem, Oregon. I live very close to Portland, Oregon, and it is breaking my heart to see all the violence and looting going on there. Another person has been shot and killed.

We are living in very different times. In Portland, there was a time when they closed the streets to go to church. Now they close the streets to rioting.

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We need to look beyond the struggle. We need to seek what ahead of us.

I was fearing for our country, and yet my fear doesn’t stand a chance when I stand with God’s love. It seems we are all broken at this point. We need healing.

Every night before I go to sleep I pray the following prayers:

I pray for the leaders of our country.

I pray for the local leaders of Oregon.

I pray for my children and their spouses.

I pray for my grandchildren.

I pray for my wife.

I pray for all my relatives.

I fall asleep in the hope of the Lord.

We need to have important people in our lives to also give us hope. This is needed in case we fall. We are better together. We can not take on this world on our own.

There are some who are happy, some are sad. Some are healthy, and some are ill. There are many who are poor and others who are rich. This is the main reason we need to come together as one. Reaching out to each other. Giving support to those who need it.

Does it seem too hard in our world today? We need to get back to when it wasn’t hard.

Do I love the rioters? Am I really concerned about their well being? If I truly follow Jesus, I do love them and are concerned for them. If we don’t have God as our center piece we will fail.

We need to find encouragement in discouraging times. It is hard, I know. We need to seek it, and we can find it in the Bible. It has a complete guide for encouragement.

I thought about all of this and it honestly sounded pretty depressing. Again I remembered that God doesn’t purposely take us down the worst path, He takes us through the best path possible for us.

He knows there are good things coming. He knows that we will be freed from our burdens. We can’t think that God has turned away from us, we will lose all hope. He is there with you each and every day.

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+If you like what you see, please subscribe at the top of this page where it says, “subscribe.” When you do, all future posts will come directly to your inbox. Also, if you know some else who could benefit for the site, please let them know about it. Your comments will not be seen by other people, just me, and I will connect with you to see if you are OK to share it.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all….never, ever, give up!

You have to Go Through Basic Training to Survive in This World

I was in the Military. I am a Army veteran. I was deployed to South Korea. My heart goes out to all those who are serving now around the world.

Before you get trained in your MOS (job,) you need to go through basic training. This is eight week of torture and pain.

You have the crawling on the ground with live ammo go over your head. You have a gas chamber you have to go through without a mask. You throw grenades hoping you get it out of your hand. Then there is the shooting range. Don’t forget the many push-ups you do all day, because the drill sergeant loves you.

Now think of this as a Christian. You have to go through basic training once you accept christ into your heart.

Being a Christian is not for sissies.

God wants you to be part of His Army. He wants to train us in a certain way. The grace that saves us is the same grace that trains us.

When we have storms and trials, we should consider them as training.

Where do we get the training? The Bible. Even long time Christians need the Bible. We are never too old to need to learn more. The Bible bridges all racial, cultural, and social deviations. The Bible is for everyone, not just Christians.

Reading the Bible is not the goal. The goal is to grow spiritually while reading the Bible.

However, just reading the Bible is not enough.

  1. We go to church.
  2. We Read the Bible.
  3. We serve in the church.

What we really need to do is to be concerned about God’s glory.

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How are you doing? Do you feel you still need a lot of training? Are there times when you slide just a little bit and not go to church one Sunday? That is where it starts. Never shrink backwards when it comes to God.

Always keep learning. Always keep training. The world is tough out there. Put on the armor of God, and be ready for what comes.

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Remember:


You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

Garbage in Garbage out, or God in God Out

It seems like our country is on a pace of complete disarray. Rioting, shootings, burning buildings, people getting beat up.

How did we get to this point?

As retired teacher I can say that as each year went by, the students became more aggressive. I would talk to their parents about it and they would say, “They are just being kids,” and shrug it off.

If children aren’t disciplined properly at home. They grow up to be those who are on the streets causing havoc.

They have lived their lives with garbage in and garbage out. All they hear is garbage, and it is planted in their brains. Therefore garbage out, is what comes from them.

How do we turn this kind of problem around? We need to start in the homes. We need to teach what is right and wrong.

If there is a Godly home, the family will have a God in and God out. They will teach their children about God. Make sure they grow spiritually, and get them involved in a church.

As they grow, they will see that their lives are much more acceptable to others, and keep growing.

How about you? Do you talk garbage in, garbage out, do you have God in and God out at your home.?

I look at it this way. It is the monkey see, monkey do theory. If you guide you children and the proper path and be a good example. Your example will have then saying, “I want to be like them.”

But if you do drugs, drink heavily, and use bad language in your home Your example will have your children also wanting to be like you. Garbage in garbage out.

Take inventory of your life. See if your path is the right path for your children to follow.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

We Need to Spread Love, Not Hate

How can we exist will all the turmoil going on around us? The Pandemic is growing fast again, with even other strands coming with it that are much more contagious.

We still have huge unrest in our country. Rioting, arson, tearing down statues, killings, Looting, and terror.

Where do we go for help? What can we do to overcome this?

We have a ugly new problem raising in our country. It is the “Karen’s,” that are causing it. They verbally attack black people with hateful words and even have pointed guns at them.

They have no concept of love. They only know hate.

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What the world needs now is love, sweet love! Where do they get it?

Well… it is simple to figure out of you are a Christian. We are suppose to be the poster child’s for love, right? Unfortunately that is not completely true. There are people right in my home church who seem to love to degrade others.

I am very saddened by this. I can not understand how someone can hate so much. They must hate themselves.

What we need to do is put God first in our lives. We need to try to live a life like Jesus. He never sinned. He never was mean to anyone. He loved everyone.

Speaking of posters child’s. We should be a poster child that shows love to everyone. What a difference that would make in our world today.

If you are struggling with thinking about wrong things, take an inventory of your life, and see where it is coming from. Push the negatives out of your mind and feel it with love and understanding.

Love is not just a four letter word. It is the word that changes the world.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

So many Problems Attack us All At Once

I had a great message online from my church on Sunday. I also was on a phone conference with a dynamic young man who is on fire for the Lord.

From the phone call I wrote down two of the quotes from Taylor Wilkens, area leader for FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes.)

  1. Everything can be chaos around us, but God will help us through the storm.
  2. There are so many bad reports coming from TV and newspapers, when will the good reports start coming in?

He is spot on, and we need to realize that. We are never alone in this world. God is always there for us through the good times, and the bad times.

We are overwhelmed with negative TV, and news in general. When is the last time you saw a feel good story? We need to be strong and block out all of the negativity.

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Referring to the protesters, My Pastor said, “Fireworks are exciting. The start is good, but then it is just a pull of smoke.” This reminds me of all the protesters who think what they are doing is right, but in the end they are causing more harm than good.

My Pastor also said, ” You have a house that you have built. You worry about room sizes, where to put the windows, the paintings, etc. Did you think about the foundation? Most people don’t.” Our foundation is the Bible. We get all our guidance from it. If we live by the Bible, our foundation will be strong.

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We were told that in reality we are just apprentices for God. We are still learned and growing. You never out grow being an apprentice. I am up in years and I am still learning much.

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There is an abundance of fear in our world. We can help others with fear. Reach out to those around you. See how they are doing. Help them if they are struggling. It may be right in your own neighborhood.

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We read the story about Peter wanting to get out of the boat and walk to Jesus. We need to get out of our boat and help others. What fear is holding you back from getting out of your boat? Ask yourself, “Why can’t I get out of my boat? Remember, God is not done with you yet. He needs you out of your boat. If we walk with Christ and not towards Him in the water, we are at the safest place to be. I realize that stepping out of a boat right now with all the storms around us is hard, at best, but we Have Good on our side. We win!!

Sorry for the many different topics here, but they were building up in my head, and I was getting a headache. :0

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never every give up!

Have You Ever Lost Something Precious to You?

Had a wonderful message this morning from my online church. The theme was not to forget those who are not saved.

Pastor Chris started out with a question. Have any of you lost something that was precious to you?

He shared a story about his three year old son who went missing while they were at a restaurant. The Pastor panicked when a waitress asked them if they were missing a child. They realized that they were. She said “There is a boy out in the drive through in front of the cars.”

Pastor Chris leaped over a barrier to the drive through and sure enough. There was his son, with not a care in the world, admiring the flowers along the drive through.

He ran to him grabbed him and held him his arms. He kissed him and was too relieved to be angry.

What if a driver was looking down when they pulled out and didn’t see the boy???

They saved their precious child.

I have had not one, but to things have I lost that are precious to me.

The first one was my four year old son. We were at Disney Land. We were walking through all the hundreds of people when my wife said “Where is KC?”

He was gone! I couldn’t see him in the mass of humanity. We panicked and rushed to the “lost child,” center. They put out a plea to our son that said, “KC, your parents are lost. Please come to the center.” They gave him very clear directions. Nothing! We felt the fear of losing our son.

I told my wife that I was going out to our car to get something. (Forgot what it was.)

KC was only about four years old at the time. I couldn’t imagine him finding us in that mass of humanity.

I got near the car and there was KC. He was sitting there and waiting for us! How my son found our car out of the thousands that were parked, I do not know to this day, but we had our precious one back. I picked him and told him how much I loved him. I too was too relieved to be angry.

The second precious thing that was lost was my wedding ring. It, of course, means a great deal to me.

I woke up one morning. Walked to the den where I always put my watch and ring, and the ring wasn’t there. I did the whole house search routine. Nothing.

I remember that I had stayed at a buddies house after a late football game. I called him and told him about my ring. He told me he would look in the room where I slept. Nothing.

I have been searching for that ring ever since. I have never found it. When I do though, there will be great rejoicing like when I found my son.

What the Pastor’s message told us about, was the parable about the one sheep that was missing out of the flock. The Shepard left all 99 sheep and hunted for that one sheep. When he found it he rejoiced. He even went back to his town and told everyone about his blessing.

Yes, we have to think…leave the 99 and try to find one?

What is taught here, is that we may have some lost sheep in our neighborhoods, at work, even at church. We need to reach out those few and try to save them.

Then we can rejoice, and be blessed, because that one person has become one of the flock.

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If you are down and out. Reach out for help. Don’t wallow in your own self pity. None wants to come to your pity party. Seek help. Pray to God for His love, and His guidance. He will be there to see you through your storms.

Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

How Can we be Humble Through the Pandemic, and Rioting?

Pandemic, rioting, businesses being burnt, statues being tore down, people being killed, and much more. So what can we do to counter all of this?

I have been thinking of this for several months. It was overwhelming for me, and I did not have good answers.

I watched my church message online yesterday, and they shared some ideas.

The first quote I heard was, “Nothing is impossible with God on your side.” That got me in a better mood.

Then they spoke of being humble. What? I am suppose to be humble when the world is crashing around me?

Then they hit me with a verse that woke me up! “Everyone who exalts himself will humbled, he who humbles himself will be exalted.” Matthew 5:4-6.

They mentioned that we need to stop going on rabbit trails. They are scattered and often lead to nowhere. I was doing that. I was running around trying to understand what was happening.

Then our Pastor give us four things to help us be humble:

  1. Love God more than yourself. We need to know who is in charge and lean on Him during the storms.
  2. Love others by serving them for God’s glory. When we reach out and help, not only does the person we help feel good, but so do we.
  3. Ask God to fill you with His Holy Spirit. I often take this for granted. We need the Holy Spirit to guide us at hard times.
  4. We need to hang out with people who are also pursuing a God fearing life. Just being in a group of believers can give us a lot of confidence, and love.

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Are you fearful of what is happening? Are your storms getting to hard to face? Do you want to stay in bed all day to avoid the world?

You certainly are not alone.

I feel your pain, and I suggest you totally depend on God as your fortress. he is stronger than any Pandemic, He will hug you during the rioting. He will give you wisdom to understand. He has told us many times:

“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10

Pretty clear there. We just need to rely on Him to protect us and guide us.

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Remember:

You are not alone.

You are not forsaken.

You are not unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

Why Can’t we All Just Get Along

One of the hardest things for me to face is how the United States is so divided. It breaks my heart to see this happening, and I am not sure how to correct it.

The recent happens in Congress has even the most loyal Americans cringing.

Our country is so divided. What can we do to try to heal our wounds?

It is easy to say everything will be OK, but not everyone agrees with that.

There are people protesting and causing riots. There are people who boycott businesses they disagree with.

I have all kinds of suggestions, but people have to follow through to make them work:

  1. Pray for our leaders. This is a tough one for many, because they hate our leaders. To me it doesn’t matter what party is in charge I will be praying for the president.
  2. Don’t believe much of the news you see. The fake news is running rampant now.
  3. Take care of your own nest. Make sure your family is happy. They are your inner circle.
  4. Spend time at your church meeting people who agree with your beliefs are. That sounds kind of silly doesn’t it? However, we need to make friendships with the right people. The people of your church may be the pillar you need to lean on.
  5. Speaking of church, I have also seen people coming to the services, and leaving with a blank look on their faces. They didn’t hear anything. They just come to show people they are “Christians.”

I exercise at least twice a week. I do the treadmill for one half hour. It gets me going, and the rest of the day I am eager to do things. Talking more about # 5 above, It is great to be in good physical shape, but it is even better to be in good spiritual shape.

Thoughts:

  1. God has work plans for you. Even if you are a senior citizen like me. Serve God just as hard as the others. God will use you no matter what you age is.
  2. We only on this planet called earth for a short time. Use you time wisely.
  3. People are so afraid of failure. I can’t tell all the times I failed and grew more because of them. Do not fear failure.

Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all… never, ever, give up!

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