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From the Pastor's Desk

The potential of a new year is always exciting to me. However, in light of what we have encountered the last couple of years in the world, there is an element of uncertainty about the future. It is a challenge to face all of that in a godly and biblical manner.

God certainly does not want us to be fearful or unrealistic about the nature of the world in which we live. In the book of Psalms, we run the full gamut of human emotion. There are great mountain peaks of praise and rejoicing, and there are also psalms of lament. For example, Psalm 44:25 says, "Our soul is bowed down to the dust; our body clings to the ground." With the unprecedented levels of material prosperity that America has experienced in recent decades, both the nation and even the American church have developed a tendency to want to focus only on the positive. That is neither a healthy nor faith-filled response. It leaves us ill-equipped to handle life's challenges. It is alright to lament on occasion.

God never expects us to live in denial. While verse 25 quoted above describes a person who has gone about as low emotionally as one could, verse 26 says, "Arise for our help, and redeem us for Your mercies sake." It is a matter of focus. It is OK if we're honest about how we feel. You just can't stay there for too long, which is our tendency. You have to get your mind on the Lord and keep it on Him. We don't know what the future may hold. But we do know that through Christ, we will find the strength to rise above it and bring glory to God. That is all He ever asks for.

-Pastors Mark and Jennifer

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