A prayer during this unusual time

I love you, Lord.
You are my protector and my shield.
You are my vaccine from every virus.
You are my wisdom in the face of change.
You are my provision in the famine.
You are my assurance when the numbers are short.
You are my comfort when I suffer.
You are my joy in boredom.
You are my energy when I am overwhelmed.
You are my hope for better days.
You have loved me well in every situation.
So, I love you this day.

Responding thoughtfully to coronavirus

If you are interested, let me weigh in on coronavirus. There is a good chance that this threat is overblown – and wouldn’t that be great? However, the mysteries behind the virus have leadership on all levels forced to respond. These actions produce two unhealthy reactions – panic or mocking disregard.

I think our leaders are trying to be responsible. The call for measured behavior changes is appropriate. To nurture the vitality of the economy is also a collective concern. Since no one knows what we are facing, let’s provide each other some latitude. Different individuals and entities will respond differently due to their unique needs.

In my sphere of leadership, I know not everyone will agree with decisions or preventative measures. Still, with God’s help, these decisions are made through love.

Frantic month points to a needed center

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I am reflecting this morning on all the activity in my family and our church the last 30 days with amazement. It seems like we have had a year’s worth of life in the past few weeks. Joyful celebrations, sentimental milestones, tough decisions, endings, and promise of new beginnings.

Yet, in the midst of issues that are bigger than life to me, the problems of the nation and world continues. The Middle East is still in chaos, the world is at a vulnerable tipping point on nuclear weapons, and America can’t figure out how to keep children safe from murder at school.

I want to solve the problems of the world, but I am overwhelmed with the pressing tasks that life demands. Like never before, I need the Christian faith to center me, and give meaning to my existence.

“O Lord God, without the pardon of my sin
I cannot rest satisfied
Without the renovation of my nature by grace
I can never rest easy
Without the hope of heaven I can never be at peace
All this I have in thy Son Jesus
Blessed be His name.”
– Valley of Vision, a collection of Puritan prayers.

* Painting is Banks of the Seine, Vétheuil, 1880 by Claude Monet.

Happy Birthday Israel!

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From our friends at the ICEJ:

“Today, Israel celebrates 69 years of independence!

In May of 1948, David Ben-Gurion, the first prime minister of Israel, publicly declared Israel’s Independence. At that time, the fledgling state had only 806,000 residents. Today, Israel’s population exceeds 8.6 million!

Israel’s existence is clear evidence of God’s faithfulness to His promises given to Abraham thousands of years ago. We salute Israel today and rejoice with her! We know her future is secure, because God watches over her day and night!

We congratulate the people of Israel on their 69th year of independence!”

Easter Continues!

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(Painting is “Disciples John and Peter on their way to the tomb on Easter morning” by Eugène Burnand in 1898)

Easter continues! Easter is not one Sunday, it is a season to celebrate the resurrection power of Jesus in fresh and powerful ways. On Sunday, I will be preaching from 1 Peter 1:3-9 a message called “The Resurrection Brings Us…”

 
We’ll have Forward 101 lunch afterwards and 242 Groups through out the day.
 
What a Sunday! Bring yourself and a friend.
We have an alive God to celebrate and enjoy!
 

Good Friday Service

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I can’t think of a more meaningful service of the year than our Good Friday Service.  CIL will have a time of worship on Friday, April 14 at 7:00 p.m.  I invite you to come as a family as we remember Jesus’ death and sacrifice for us.   Service will last less than an hour and we will take communion as a church.   Join me and my family in honor of Jesus to begin this special weekend.