This will be my last post as the Pastor of Peace. This coming Sunday is my retirement day. God has been good to me, my family and the family of Peace for the past almost 25 years. Thanks to all of you who have been partners in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

May the Lord who has begun a good work in us being it to completion in th e day of our Lord Jesus Christ!

James chapter 4

James uses a word in this chapter most of us don’t like. It is submit. We want to be in charge. We want to be the master of our own fate. But we don’t have control of what the future will bring.

I didn’t see the Corona Virus Crisis coming and know that I would have a face mask in my future. Did you? I didn’t see the race riots coming and the efforts by some to totally try to change our nation. But they are here.

I have been asked to serve as an interim pastor at a church starting in August. I’m planning on doing that but don’t have a guarantee that will happen.

Faith calls us to submit our lives to God who loves us and calls us into His family. Faith means letting go and letting God be in control. That isn’t easy to do. But it is the right thing to do. God the Father does know best!

James chapters 2-3

Controlling our tongues, being careful about what we say can be a real challenge. I think we can add being careful about what we post on social media. Our words can tear down or build up. We should be in the construction business, building up other people.

There are two kinds of wisdom, the wisdom of the world and Godly wisdom. When it comes to matters of faith, values and morality we need to listen to God’s wisdom, not the world’s.

James chapters 1-2

We are not saved by the good things that we do. The good that we do are the result of faith in our lives. We can’t just talk about our faith. We need to live as God’s people.

Every good thing we have comes from God. So we should thank Him and use all that we have for the good of others and to the glory of God.

We may go through tough times. We may face persecution. James readers did. But God will always be with us and help us.

Hebrews chapter 12

I used to run four or five days a week. I ran for exercise. I trained for races. I ran as a way to deal with stress. But my knees won’t let me run now. So I try to bike, walk, work around the house. My college cross country coach taught me a lot of life lessons.

Paul tells us to keep running the race of faith and keep looking for Jesus. We can never stop running our personal faith race. But sometimes we have to pass the baton, hand off a ministry or service to another person.

The time is almost here for me to pass the ministry baton for Peace to Pastor Andy. He will take up the ministry at Peace. I’m praying that God will give me the opportunity to pick up the ministry baton in a different place.

But for now keep running your race of faith. It is too soon to quit.

Hebrews chapter 11

God’s people live by faith. Sometimes that might mean seeing God at work to bring about good things in this life. Other times it might mean have the courage and endurance to face tough times and even persecution as a follower of Jesus.

Faith believes that regardless of circumstances God is with us and will help us.

Hebrews chapter 10

Christians face the challenge and the temptation to try to earn God’s love and forgiveness. We are not restored to God’s family by the combination of faith and the things we do. The Gentile converts to Christianity did not have to be circumcised to be saved. We are saved by Grace through faith. The good things that we do as Christians are the product of God working in our lives.

God brings us together in the Christian faith family to encourage, support and serve together. We need each other. That is why it is so great to be able to worship God together again.

Hebrews chapters 1-2

Jesus came to set us free from sin and death by His death and resurrection. The price for sin has been paid in full. Death has been defeated. We are no longer controlled by sin.

But we still live in a sinful world. Jesus knows what that is like. He can help us overcome temptations. He can see us through tough times. When all is said and done we know that God is in control.

So as we go through these chaotic times we can trust Jesus to be with us and to see us through whatever the future might bring. It is too soon to quit.

Second Timothy chapter 2

What do you do when life is not going the way you want? Paul was in prison in Rome for preaching the Gospel. Emperor Nero was persecuting and having Christians killed. But Paul held onto his faith and encouraged Timothy to remain faithful in his life and ministry.

2020 is not turning out like anyone expected. We have seen Christians blamed for the spread of the Corona Virus and a church in Washington D.C. burned. What is next? We don’t know.

Hopefully things will settle down, peace will be restored and real solutions can be found to the racial inequalities in our land. Every human life is a gift from God. Everyone should be respected as a child of God. We need to pray that God will heal our land beginning with each one of us!

Second Timothy chapter 1

We are living in a time of change filled with fear and doubts about the future. But we do not have to live in fear. God’s Spirit gives us power to live self disciplined, self controlled lives full of love.

That is the kind of people our nation needs right now. We should pray for God’s Spirit to empower us to live as God’s people in our world today.