October 2, 1999

A ‘Thank You’ is in order to get things rolling.

Since I posted yesterday, I have gained 4 new followers! Click here to read that post.

It humbles me and honors me to realize that people follow this blog. So thanks!

50968019 - businessman hands holding thank you sign vector


If my title has piqued your interest, good. That was the intent.

Where were you on October 2, 1999?

What were you doing? Who were you with that day?

For me, I remember it like it was yesterday. In fact, even better than yesterday because I don’t even remember what I ate for breakfast!

It was a brisk Saturday morning, The sun was bright and clear but a fall breeze was forecasting winter temperatures.

My girlfriend and I were planning on heading to the Minneapolis area to spend time with my family. This was to be the first time my parents were meeting this wonderful woman I had spoken about so many times.

On the way, we stopped in the Waupaca (central Wisconsin) area, specifically, Spencer Lake Bible Camp.

Earlier in July, we had both been counselors at the camp for a teenager bible camp. Sorry, I don’t have enough time to recall the details but needless to say, I got a pretty girl’s phone number before the week was out. =-)

We had been calling and emailing ever since.

Now the time had come to get on my knee, pull out the ring, and ask a question.

She said YES!!!

The following April, we were married.

So, babe, happy anniversary on getting engaged.

getting-engaged-profile

And if you ever see me in person, you may ask this question:

“Do you regret proposing to your girlfriend?”

My answer will always and forever be: “No. Not even for a second.”


I started with a ‘Thank You’ so I will end with one as well.

To my Lord, my life is incredible. You have blessed me beyond what I could dream. Thank you for my wife.

To my wife, thank you for being awesome and sticking with me for the last 20 years.

How about another 20?

Where to begin…October 1.

Hello Reader. I hope your day is running smoothly. Perhaps you have just woken up. Maybe sleep is coming very soon.

Whatever time of day it is for you, enjoy it.

For me, there are many things in my life right now that can be looked at as negative. I won’t even list them because they are not negative things.

If I choose to look at a circumstance or situation and be depressed, that is my choice.

If I see the joy in the chaos, that is also my choice.

positive-attitude

Today starts a campaign if you will.

No, I am not running for public office. However, I am out to make a change.

Not a change in you but a change in me.

I want God’s best in me. Writing this blog is more for me than you, the reader.

So for October, I am posting every night.

This will allow me to see my journey. It is almost as if the words that are typed out are a signpost of where I have been.

The plan is to keep looking forward; progressing.

Looking back only serves to slow things down or worse, cause an accident.

If you choose to read along every day, I am cool with that decision.

If not, no worries because, again, this is really for me.

May God grant you grace and mercy today in ways you have never seen before!

See you tomorrow!

Even the angels…

Hello friends!

I realize it has been a while since I posted. Busy times.

In the meantime though, there have been two ideas rolling around in my head.

idea cloud

But let me catch you up first, in case you have missed my posts.

catch up

For the last number of posts, I have been going through I Peter. Today, this post will cover through verses 8-12 of chapter 1. Click here for the most recent post.

I have also stated that it seems to be taking a long time. Well, so what. Okay, on to verse 8.


Here is the first of the two ideas that have been taking up space in my brain:

1. I have never seen Jesus but I have given my whole life to Him.

“Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.” I Peter 1:8-9

More than just getting something, I have purpose.

My life is justified in Jesus. There is hope.

In a word, salvation.

It would take many more posts to explain all the many facets of salvation and the scriptures that support them. I probably have other posts that would accomplish this but I don’t recall which ones would have that information. Maybe read a few of them…?

Now, as for the second idea…

2. Angels are curious.

Apparently, angels are concerned with the things of man. God sends these heavenly being to do His bidding. Human life would be vastly different if there were no angels.

But about this salvation…they are curious. They don’t get the same perspective that we get. The Holy Spirit resides in those who follow Christ. That spirit empowers us to live according to God’s purpose. God, via the Holy Spirit, is with us every step of our lives.

Angels don’t that privilege.

sad-angel

“Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of the Messiah and the glories that would follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things.” I Peter 1:10-12

Have you ever been to a sting ray tank? You can buy little fish and feed these magnificent creatures. Watching them glide through the water is amazing. It is really cool how you can look over the side to see into their world.

You want to lean close to get a good glimpse or maybe even to touch one of them as they swim by.

stingray

That is how the angels feel about us!

Even the angels long to look into these things…they want to know about us and our world!

I am greatly encouraged by these things. God is really cool that way.

Gold!!!

Guy walks into a jewelry store and proceeds to steal a gold watch. As he is running away, the store owners yells at him. “AU, that’s not your watch!”

gold watch

If you didn’t get that joke, go back to the periodic table of elements. Find number 79. It should make itself clear at that point. =-)


My last post, Trials and Chocolate, ended with the promise to blog about Gold bars.

According to www.usmint.gov, here are some fun facts about gold:

  • Amount of present gold holdings: 147.3 million ounces.
  • The only gold removed has been very small quantities used to test the purity of gold during regularly scheduled audits. Except for these samples, no gold has been transferred to or from the Depository for many years.
  • The gold is held as an asset of the United States at book value of $42.22 per ounce.
  • Highest gold holdings this century: 649.6 million ounces (December 31, 1941).
  • Size of a standard gold bar: 7 inches x 3 and 5/8 inches x 1 and 3/4 inches.
  • Weight of a standard gold bar: approximately 400 ounces or 27.5 pounds.

Now for the spiritual side of gold.

We are in I Peter, and, if I say so myself, not moving very fast. No problem. It is good to meditate on God’s word. Here is verse 7 of the first chapter:

“These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.”

If I read that correctly, my faith has greater value than gold.

Why do we go through trials and tribulations?

So that our faith can be proven.

Gold is put through fire. It needs the fire to be purified.

By itself, the gold cannot remove any impurities.

This process of refining gold is complicated and multi-faceted. I don’t understand it either. But the basics are worth catching.

Gold can be found on all seven continents. Regardless of where it was mined, the gold coming out of the earth is not yet pure. It has a long way to go before it gets to your fiance’s finger.

Hence, the refining process. The fire of God.

gold refining

For us, that comes in the form of hard times, temptations, or struggles.

God is desiring that the impurities are removed.

When Jesus comes back, our lives will reflect His glory. Or they won’t reflect His glory.

We can choose to rely on God through the trial or we can try to stick it out ourselves. 

Think about that last sentence.

Who are we to say that we know better than the Almighty God?

Who am I to ignore His grace just for a moment of pleasure?

As much as it hurts or is uncomfortable, let the refining process happen.

I know that I am trying.

I want to be super shiny when Christ returns. I will reflect His character, praise, honor, and glory so much more that way!


At some point soon, you will probably see gold. It might be your wedding band. Perhaps a gold crayon. Maybe the sky will provide golden hues.

Let that color remind you of these two things:

  1. God is letting you go through the refining process to become pure.
  2. God will also never let you go through it alone.

gold bullion

 

Trials and Chocolate

They come in all shapes and sizes.

Their names are different.

Some are strong; others are weak.

Minutes, hours, or days can be the duration.

Each person reacts differently to varying types.

To what am I referring?

questioning

Trial. Storms. Temptations. Sufferings. Tests. Hardships. What do you call them?

Peter gives some timely words for us.

Here is verse 6:

“In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.” I Peter 1:6, NIV

Here are my thoughts on Peter’s words.

  1. Trials are diverse. Chocolate might be a weak spot for me but french fries will get my wife every time. We have different trials that affect us.
  2. Trials are distracting. If I am looking at the chocolate, I might miss the meal.
  3. Trials are dividing. I say chocolate is good. My wife likes potato chips better. We are divided on the topic of dessert.
  4. Trials are depleting. My money goes to buy more chocolate. Will I have enough for a regular dinner?
  5. Trials are depressing. What if I eat too much chocolate?

You get the point. And, by the way, chocolate is not that bad for you.


But why are we talking about trials? Didn’t we just get through a few verses of a fantastic inheritance set aside for us?

The answer is, “Yes!” We do have an inheritance. Read my last post to find out more on this topic.

Look at verse 6 again, from earlier. “…for a little while…”

We are not there yet.

We are in a trial period.

trial period

And we can celebrate in the suffering.

We can have joy in the journey.

We can smile in the storm.

We can be happy in the hardship.

We can rejoice (greatly!) during the rain.

Why? Because God is bigger than the trials. He reigns supreme over the hardships.

Out faith will come out like gold when all is done!

gold

And that will be the topic of my next post, Gold bars!

But for now, look to God if you are in a trial. He will see you through it.

And help yourself to a chocolate bar.