Category Archives: God’s love

In Love

Holy and awesome God,
In love You created the world and all that exists.
In sadness You watched this world plunge into darkness through sin.
In compassion You sent the prophets to warn Your people.
In patience You waited.
In grace you sent Your one and only son to this world.
In mercy Jesus suffered and died for me.
In power Jesus rose from the grave for me.
In love You give me salvation through faith in Jesus.

Holy and awesome God,
I am humbled and blown away
when I reflect on this story.
I am grateful and thankful
when I reflect on what You did for me.

Oh God,
You are indeed holy and awesome.
May You receive all
worship,
honor,
glory,
and praise;
for in love You have given me hope;
in love You have given me peace.
Oh God,
I am so in love with You.
Amen.

The Pastor -|—

Majestic God

When I drive to and from the church office each day (and when the skies are clear) I am blessed with beautiful views of Mount Rainier. Each time I see this magnificent mountain I am reminded of God’s creativity and power. And each time I see this mountain I give God thanks and praise. Only God could create something so magnificent and glorious and beautiful and awe-inspiring.

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But also…

This mountain is not lost in the midst of other mountains around it. Nothing is close to it to steal its glory. Mount Rainier stands alone in all it’s splendor. In this part of God’s creation, nothing compares to Mount Rainier. And when the clouds shield the mountain from view, I am saddened, but I know that she is still there.

And then…

as I view this glorious mountain, I am reminded that God is still bigger and this bigger God is for me and with me. This glorious God redeemed me through Jesus Christ. This spectacular God loves me. This creative God cradles me in his powerful yet gentle hands. This magnificent God is in complete control. God is not lost in the midst of other Gods, but stands alone in power. Nothing compares to God almighty. And, there are times when God seems distant and out of view, but God is still there. God has not left.

And so…

As I continue my blessed drives to and from the office I will continue to ponder this awesome God of ours and give God thanks and praise for His gentle reminders of his glorious magnificence. And when the clouds shield Mount Rainier from view, I will remember that she is still there and will never leave; reminding me of God’s ongoing faithfulness to always be with me.

All praise be to God!!!

The Pastor -|—

Open Letter to the Doyle Rices of the World

[From a story posted on Kare11 in Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN; written by Doyle Rice from USA Today. This is in reference to the winter solstice (first day of winter).]

And why is the Earth tilted? It’s probably the result of collisions with various proto-planets and other massive objects during the formation of the solar system billions of years ago, according to NASA. Just a bit unsettling to realize that the reason the Earth has the perfect temperature for life to form is a few random collisions with other space rocks a few eons ago.

Oh Doyle Rice, if only you knew that the reason the earth is perfectly tilted isn’t due to “random” collisions. If only you knew that this perfect planet was created and put into perfect motion by God Almighty, our Creator. If only you knew that the only “unsettling” part of all of this is that your very life (and ours) are in the hands of an Almighty God.

But…

The Good News is that your very life (and ours) are in the hands of a loving, Almighty God who came to us on Christmas Day in Jesus Christ. And through faith in Jesus Christ, redeemed a lost and sinful people.

Therefore, when you look at creation, it should send you to your knees in humble worship of an awesome and powerful and loving God. There is NOTHING random about God. Creation is NOT a fluke. Life DIDN’T just happen. There are hundreds (maybe thousands) of details about our universe, galaxy and planet that have to be perfect in order for life to exist. That is NOT random. That was NOT an accident. Collisions DIDN’T just happen and bump things into perfect place. Nature doesn’t work that way. If any collision is responsible for the earth being tilted PERFECTLY then God’s mighty hand guided that collision to make sure it was perfect; as God guided and formed all of creation.

One CAN NOT just pass off life as a cosmic accident.

And so to all the Doyle Rices in the world, I appeal to you to meditate on creation and consider the perfectness of all those thousands of factors and then look to God Almighty and worship HIM through Jesus Christ; for you are not random but rather wonderfully created.

So don’t be “unsettled” over randomness and accidents and chance, but rather worship and praise this awesome God of ours as we live in this perfect masterpiece called creation.

All praise and glory and honor and worship be to God, always and forever.

The Pastor -|—

 

Morning devotions ~ Be nice and love…EVERYONE

But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful. [Luke 6:35-36]

Wow, that’s a tough one. Love my enemies? Do good to them and lend to them? Expect nothing in return? This seems to be asking a lot. And why should I do all of this since my enemies have very little interest in loving me or doing good to me or even lending to me?

In a culture of, “an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth”, we are not used to returning good for evil. If someone hurts you then you withhold love and goodness as a form of punishment. But more than that, we often withhold love and goodness as a way to protect ourselves from further injury and pain. We have a tendency to distance ourselves from our enemies

But this is not the way of the Gospel.

Instead, Jesus says love your enemies. What better way to proclaim the Gospel than to show love to those who are not expecting it or to those the world is not expecting you to show love to. This is the whole “heaping burning coals on their head” (Romans 12:20-21) thing; that we should not be overcome by evil but over come evil with good. A tall order. A difficult task. An awesome command.

Lord have mercy and help me.

But consider something else: Who are we to call people evil when we ourselves are evil? That’s right, God shows love and goodness and mercy to you and me; filthy sinners; evil; enemies of God. God sent Jesus to die for us because we are evil and sinful. God did not withhold his love from us even though in the economics of this world he had every right to do so. This, my friends, is what makes God’s love through Jesus Christ so amazing…

It’s undeserved.

Therefore, what better way to show God’s love than to love those we consider enemies, because who knows, we might win a new friend. Better yet, we might win a new brother/sister in Christ.

As God loves you through Jesus Christ, love one another…EVERYONE, to the praise and glory of God our Father.

Have a glorious and blessed day 🙂

The Pastor -|—

Morning devotions ~ Messing with heads

but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. [Romans 5:8]

Isn’t this awesome; that God would show such an amazing love even though we are sinners. But better yet, God shows this amazing love because we are sinners. This is what is called unconditional love. And praise be to God for that because we would never live up to God’s demands and expectations.

So if God shows us this kind of love shouldn’t we show this same kind of love to one another; especially our enemies?

[In case you’re wondering, the answer to the previous question is ~ YES]

Too often we make our love for people conditional. If they are nice to us then we are nice to them. But Jesus says, what reward is there in that, even the Gentiles do that; even those outside the faith. But when you show unconditional love to those you feel don’t deserve it and those who are not expected it, you proclaim the love of Christ and show people that there is something “usual” about you.

I have always enjoyed this fun-loving quote:
Love your enemies. It messes with their heads.

I giggle at this but there is Gospel truth there. Your enemies are not expecting love from you. They expect revenge or apathy or coldness from you but not love. So try it sometime. Show Christ’s love to an “enemy” and see what happens. It may tick them off at first, but keep at it. Keep at it and proclaim Christ’s love. Keep at it and Praise God always and forever.

God of love, your love is amazing. You love is life-giving. And your love is something I don’t deserve. Help me to receive this love into my heart so that I can show this love to others; not to my glory but to your glory Oh God. Thank you, God, for showing me unconditional love, in Jesus name I pray. Amen.

The Pastor -|—