Have We Forgotten How to Act?

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Lupine in a field of Indian Paintbrush. Each flower, each color enhances the others.

In this time of incivility and rancor, how should we act?

He has showed you, O man, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8

What does it mean to act justly?  It is to treat others rightly.

He (God) defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow, and loves the alien, giving him food and clothing. And you are to love those who are aliens, for you yourselves were aliens in Egypt. Fear the Lord your God and serve him. Deuteronomy 10:18-20

Stop doing wrong, learn to do right!
Seek justice, encourage the oppressed.
Defend the cause of the fatherless,
plead the case of the widow. Isaiah 1:16-17

What does it mean to love mercy? It is to love others as God loves you.

“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.” John 15:12

To walk humbly with God is to walk in His way not your own. Then you will be enhancing not subtracting from creation, and pleasing to behold.

Taming Your Anxious Thoughts

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Arrowleaf Balsamroot soaking in the sunshine

Worry is a sticky thought––once touched it is hard to brush it away.

The flowers of the field remind us there is a way to take care of worry:

“And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these…seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:28-34

To get rid of worry for tomorrow requires actively pursuing the Kingdom of Jesus today (letting Him forgive past wrongs and rule in every area). Then humbly walk with God allowing the Holy Spirit’s help you make right choices. If you mess up, or another worry pops up start again with step one. Worry itself is not a sin, but it is the temptation to take your eyes off of Jesus.

The Steep Edge of Life

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On the edge with Mountain Penstemon

These Mountain Penstemon cling to a steep edge along the Icicle Creek, living life in a precarious place. Sometimes my life feels like these wildflowers––I am just barely hanging on. Psalm 33 is given to us for such times.

A horse is a vain hope for deliverance;
despite all its great strength it cannot save.
But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him,
on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,  Psalm 33:17-18

Great wealth cannot save.
Great intelligence cannot save.
Great beauty cannot save.
Great power cannot save.
Instead put your hope in Jesus, the unfailing love of God, whose sacrifice brings us unassailable deliverance from our worst fears.

Lupine Lifting Up Praise

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Lupine lifting up to praise God

Praise the Lord, O my soul.
When I praise God, I begin to review all he has done for me.
He has forgiven me, and removed my shame.
He has redeemed my life from sorrow and death.
He satisfies all my desires.
He leads me into goodness and guards me on the way.
His love for me knows no bounds, and he will not let anything come between us.
He shares himself with me, and gives me his name that I should call upon him.
Even the flowers of the field praise the Lord.
What a blessing it is to praise God
Praise the Lord, O my soul.

A paraphrase of Psalm 103

Hope Like Wildflowers

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Wildflowers along the Wonderland Trail, Mt. Rainier NP 

The smallest trouble is like a tiny blister on your foot,
With walking it will soon grow to unbearable proportions.
But I can put up with the most difficult circumstance if I have hope.
For hope is like wildflowers along the trail, they take my mind and heart to heavenly places.

Remember Your word to Your servant,
for You have given me hope.
My comfort in my suffering is this:
Your promise preserves my life. Psalm 119:49-50

Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. Hebrews 12:2-3