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It is always discomforting to wake up in the morning and listen to the local news about all the violence that occurred in our city overnight. It was truly troubling to hear about a gunfight in a nearby business, only blocks from our home. I often worry about the horrible mess that we are leaving behind for our children and grandchildren. Perhaps, having two of our granddaughters with us this week makes it even more disturbing.

However, God spoke some words of hope and encouragement to me this morning from Joshua 1:9, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” I often tell our people, “Evil is everywhere, but so is God.” The Lord reminded me of this truth today, as I was exercising my body. He told me that I needed to also exercise my faith! We can rely on God for our protection and our provisions. He is ever faithful to meet our needs and to keep us safe from harm. We have seen His hands at work in our lives, guiding and guarding us. So, there is no reason to doubt Him or to fear the world.

The Lord spoke to my heart this morning, through His Word, to remind me that even the most wicked and powerful man on earth is no match for our Almighty God! Knowing this truth, we have no reason to feel fearful or anxious about anything. The power and presence of the Lord in our lives should give us cause for strength and courage. We can “be strong” because the strength of the Lord is always available to us. We can be “of good courage” because our God is always with us wherever we go. These are valuable lessons that we should instill in the hearts of our loved ones, to prepare them for whatever life throws at them throughout their journey.

As we look forward to celebrating the resurrection of our Lord on Easter Sunday, I am mindful of the truth that “I serve a risen Savior, He’s in the world today. I know that He is living, whatever men may say. I see His hand of mercy. I hear His voice of cheer. And just the time I need Him, He’s always near. He lives! He lives! Christ Jesus lives today. He walks with me and talks with me, along life’s narrow way. He lives! He lives! Salvation to impart. You ask me how I know He lives? He lives within my heart!” I pray that you have this same assurance of Christ’s presence and power in your life today. May you all have a Happy Easter!

Serving in love,

Bro. Jim


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