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Luke 21:34

“But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly”
Luke 21:34

Jesus was explaining to His disciples the signs of His second coming, and issues a warning here for us to not let His return come on us unexpectedly, and He specifically mentions three things that can weigh down our hearts and cause us to become off guard. The first two items, carousing and drunkenness, ought to be readily apparent if they have crept into our lives. However, the third item the “cares of this life” is the easiest one to creep in and the hardest one to detect.

Job, school, homework, commute, doctor’s appointments, car repairs, grocery shopping, chores, children’s sporting events, birthday parties, graduations, vacations and on and on. On top of that, throw in things like financial worries, job security, your own health issues or those of a family member. (In case you are wondering where social media fits into all of this, carousing can also be translated as dissipation, and social media certainly fits that bill.) All of these things can crowd Jesus out of our lives, and we don’t notice it because these things in and of themselves seem innocuous, but on the whole they place a weight on our heart. Jesus though does not leave us without a solution. He tell us in verse 36 to watch and pray always. What does this mean practically? Pray Jesus into the mundane of our lives. Bring Him into all of our cares and worries. He wants to walk with us daily and wants us to fellowship with Him. How glorious that our Savior cares so deeply for us! May we lead prayerful lives, and be on the lookout for His return

Jeff Mericle

Ephesians 1:7-8

In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence,
Ephesians 1:7-8

The crucifixion of Jesus on the cross and His resurrection from the dead three days later are the most important events in all of history. They were planned before the world was and will be celebrated forever in heaven. His blood bought us our redemption. His death absorbed the wrath of God that we deserved. The justice of God was satisfied, the mercy of God was realized, and the grace of God was demonstrated. The glory of God shines brightest through the cross.

These wonderful truths should not just be facts we understand intellectually, but they should stir in our hearts wonder, amazement, praise, and thankfulness. They should ignite our emotions in an overflowing joy unspeakable and full of glory as we behold the Lamb of God, our Savior. He is our Lamb whose blood has made possible the forgiveness of all our sin according to the riches of His grace which He lavished upon us. The immensity of the price that purchased our forgiveness is expressed here, for the riches of His grace are immeasurable.

The astonishment of the psalmist in the light of this truth compelled him to exclaim, “As high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His compassion toward those who fear Him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us!” (Psalm 103:11-12)

This is the story that should never grow old, but should stir us every morning to live lives that demonstrate the infinite value of Jesus Christ—to live for His glory. Since His grace and love was lavished on an undeserving sinner such as I, then surely I should lavish grace and love on the undeserving around me, without resentment. We were all created to showcase His glory, so shine for Him today!

Tom Day

Romans 8:18

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
Romans 8:18

The previous verses to this passage above speak towards living in the Spirit of God verses continuing to live in the flesh that we have been freed from once we put our faith in Jesus Christ. We have a new identity, a new man (or woman) where we have access to God as the Holy Spirit now lives in us. However, living out our new identity will come with certain sufferings. We have to resist certain habits and tendencies that we used to carelessly enjoy in our flesh that we can longer enjoy being in the Spirit. Putting off these things do come at a cost and sometimes that cost is so great that it feels like suffering.

But Paul encourages us in our fight to remain living in the Spirit of God that any suffering we face for Jesus now, will seem to be of little significance when we finally get to be with Jesus face to face. Meaning, everything we do today that costs us now, will be oh so ever worth it later.

You never lose doing it Jesus’ way, no matter how much your flesh groans the opposite.

Pastor Jason Witt

Proverbs 14:12

There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death.
Proverbs 14:12

Jesus says in Matthew 7:13 that wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction. At the time you are on this wide path, it seems like you are going the right direction. You see everyone going the same way. Everyone seems to agree on the same things. It seems right, yet the end of the road here is death. Jesus in the next verse says, because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life.

The warning is to pay attention to the road you are on. When I get on the freeway to head to San Francisco, I need to pay attention to where I am going. If for some reason the signs say San Diego, you can be assured that I will not make it to my destination. If it seems right and feels right, I’d caution you that it’s probably a good idea to check where that path leads to.

Join me on that narrow and difficult path which leads to life.

Joshua Navarro

John 6:35

And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.”
John 6:35

Prior to this verse, Jesus had fed over 5,000 hungry people who had traveled to see Him. The Lord’s compassion for the crowd moved Him to multiply one boy’s lunch, miraculously feeding everyone in attendance with leftovers to go. Jesus demonstrated His capability to meet the needs of those who would seek Him using a physical example, but He wanted them to understand that He could feed a person’s soul with heavenly nourishment forevermore.

Many did follow Jesus to His next destination, but for some, it was the earthly bread that they were after. The Lord has so much more to offer than bodily sustenance. For the believer who desires to feast on His word, digest His precepts, and be filled with His Spirit, the hunger and thirst of the soul will never lack fulfillment. Today, may we long to be richly fed with the love and righteousness that only Jesus Christ can provide. Bon Appétit!

Jeff Deal

1 Corinthians 2:1

And I, brethren, when I came to you, did not come with excellence of speech or of wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God.
1 Corinthians 2:1

There is great power in your story and people need to hear it. Many times, we think that there are issues that we need to work through before the Lord can use us and our testimony. But the truth is you will always be working through issues and if you are waiting to be perfect, have the Bible memorized, or have a testimony that rivals others, you will be with Jesus before you ever share your story and that would be a shame.

The power of your testimony is in God and the lengths He went to make you right with Him. Your testimony is your walk with Jesus now, that’s why it’s so precious. People don’t see who you were, but they do see who you are now in Christ.

How many can be reached through the hearing of your testimony? I don’t know and neither will you unless you step out and share it. Why don’t you tell someone what Jesus has done for you and find out?

Pastor Doug Hardin

Matthew 11:28-30

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
Matthew 11:28-30

Don’t you love the promises of God? There are people in this world who will turn their backs on you and disappear the moment things get difficult. God is the exact opposite; when things get difficult, hard, or even downright ugly, God draws near and says, “Come to Me and I will give you rest for your soul.” That’s the beauty of the gospel, our worst for God’s best!

This year has been extremely difficult; people are hurting financially and are feeling stressed and overwhelmed. In the midst of it all, God gives an invitation to come to Him and exchange it all for rest. Today, if you are weighed down by the worries of this world, go to the Lord and trade your stress for rest!

For the King,

Pastor Daniel Batistelli

1Thessalonians 5:24

He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it.
1Thessalonians 5:24

Have you ever forgotten how faithful God is? I don’t mean you don’t know He is faithful, but with our attitudes, complaining, and countenance, we have a lapse in memory. I know for me, I seem to forget God’s faithfulness when I think something should be done in my way, not remembering that God is faithful to do many things His way, according to His will. God will do what He has promised you. It may not be how you imagined it or within the timing you thought, but He will do it.

Resting in Him,

Pastor Sean Boehm

Proverbs 17:6

Children’s children are the crown of old men, And the glory of children is their father.
Proverbs 17:6

When Jesus is the center of your home there is no better reward than to see your children move into their own independent and personal walk with the Lord. But then when they have children and you see your grandkids loving Jesus, that is glorious. As grandparents, we should never neglect the opportunity and responsibility we have to pour into the lives of that next generation. And as the Proverb says, we can also teach our little one to love and respect their parents because that is how a godly home works.

From this generation to the next,

Pastor Gerard Deleeuw

1 John 2:3

Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.
1 John 2:3

As Christians, we need to regularly gauge our spiritual walk and this verse helps to do so. Do you question if you really know Jesus? Ask yourself, are you keeping His commandments?

This doesn’t mean we don’t stumble occasionally, but we shouldn’t be living a life where we’re constantly breaking the Lord’s commandments. That’s why it’s important to always read the Bible, pray, and go to church, so that God can speak to you about how you’re walking in Him.

Today, ask the Lord, as David did in Psalm 139:23, to search me, O God, and know my heart. God gives us every tool we need to be able to abide with Jesus.

Wanting to know Jesus better,

Pastor Ron Kitchell

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