Today we are reading Acts 1. In this chapter we read about Jesus’ Ascension. “So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.”” ‭‭Acts‬ ‭1:6-11‬ ‭ESV‬‬ Acts is a continuation of Luke’s Gospel. In this first chapter we read about the resurrected Jesus appearing to the disciples. He commands them to wait in Jerusalem for the Holy Spirit to give them power. He says they will be His witnesses throughout the world. He also says, Jesus is coming back! All three of these statements are true for us as well. Gods promises to give us the Holy Spirit. God commands us to be His witnesses and Jesus is coming back. Which of the three is most exciting to you? May God inspire you to tell everyone about Jesus! Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Luke 24. In this chapter we read about Jesus’ resurrection! “As they were talking about these things, Jesus himself stood among them, and said to them, “Peace to you!” But they were startled and frightened and thought they saw a spirit. And he said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Touch me, and see. For a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. And while they still disbelieved for joy and were marveling, he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate before them. Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance for the forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.””
‭‭Luke‬ ‭24:36-49 When Jesus rose from the dead, He appeared at specific times and places for specific reasons. Why do you think He appeared to the eleven like this? He had paid for the sins of the world. He had conquered sin, death and the devil. What was next for His followers? What is next for you? Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Luke 23. In this chapter we read about Jesus’ death. “Two others, who were criminals, were led away to be put to death with him. And when they came to the place that is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, one on his right and one on his left. And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” And they cast lots to divide his garments. And the people stood by, watching, but the rulers scoffed at him, saying, “He saved others; let him save himself, if he is the Christ of God, his Chosen One!” The soldiers also mocked him, coming up and offering him sour wine and saying, “If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!””
‭‭Luke‬ ‭23:32-37‬ ‭ESV‬‬ From the perspective of sinful mankind, a person’s basic desire is to save himself. Jesus, has the opposite desire. He wants to save everyone else. When have you ignored your desire for self-preservation to help others? How did that work out? May God teach you to love Him and your neighbors even more than yourself. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Luke 22. In this chapter we read about the night when Jesus was betrayed. “Then they seized him and led him away, bringing him into the high priest’s house, and Peter was following at a distance. And when they had kindled a fire in the middle of the courtyard and sat down together, Peter sat down among them. Then a servant girl, seeing him as he sat in the light and looking closely at him, said, “This man also was with him.” But he denied it, saying, “Woman, I do not know him.” And a little later someone else saw him and said, “You also are one of them.” But Peter said, “Man, I am not.” And after an interval of about an hour still another insisted, saying, “Certainly this man also was with him, for he too is a Galilean.” But Peter said, “Man, I do not know what you are talking about.” And immediately, while he was still speaking, the rooster crowed. And the Lord turned and looked at Peter. And Peter remembered the saying of the Lord, how he had said to him, “Before the rooster crows today, you will deny me three times.” And he went out and wept bitterly.” ‭‭Luke‬ ‭22:54-62‬ ‭ESV‬‬ This sad series of events records Peter and Jesus at a very low time. Peter loved Jesus and was willing to die for him…until he wasn’t. Jesus never stopped loving Peter. Isn’t it comforting to know that God’s love for us us is steadfast even when ours isn’t? If you are struggling in your faith, be comforted in knowing God is not struggling to love you. May He give you a gentle reminder of His love today! Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Luke 21. In this chapter we read about the widow’s mite. “Jesus looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the offering box, and he saw a poor widow put in two small copper coins. And he said, “Truly, I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all of them. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.” Luke‬ ‭21:1-4‬ ‭ESV‬‬ Why did the widow put in all she had? According to recent statistics, only 4% of Christians tithe. That is a tragic! There is so much joy in giving! We have tithed to our church and give additionally to many other Christian ministries. Is something holding you back from giving? Kim and I enjoy giving and get excited when God enables us to be generous. If you are not sure how to proceed or just want to talk about giving, I would be glad to talk with you about this. God is able to make you abound in all things and is eager to bless this area of your life also! Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Luke 20. In this chapter we read about the authority of Jesus. “One day, as Jesus was teaching the people in the temple and preaching the gospel, the chief priests and the scribes with the elders came up and said to him, “Tell us by what authority you do these things, or who it is that gave you this authority.” He answered them, “I also will ask you a question. Now tell me, was the baptism of John from heaven or from man?” And they discussed it with one another, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say, ‘Why did you not believe him?’ But if we say, ‘From man,’ all the people will stone us to death, for they are convinced that John was a prophet.” So they answered that they did not know where it came from. And Jesus said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.”” Luke‬ ‭20:1-8‬ ‭ESV‬‬ The Temple grounds were governed by a strict set of rules. No one was allowed to teach unless they had proper credentials—they had to be approved by the religious authorities. Imagine the irony of their questions! “By what authority…?” How about, by the Creator of the Universe! How do you think their questions appear to them now in eternity? What about your thoughts and words…will they seem wise in eternity? May God give you His perspective in your earthly affairs. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Luke 19. In this chapter we read about Jesus and Zacchaeus. “He entered Jericho and was passing through. And behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus. He was a chief tax collector and was rich. And he was seeking to see who Jesus was, but on account of the crowd he could not, because he was small in stature. So he ran on ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see him, for he was about to pass that way. And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, hurry and come down, for I must stay at your house today.” So he hurried and came down and received him joyfully. And when they saw it, they all grumbled, “He has gone in to be the guest of a man who is a sinner.” And Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, “Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor. And if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I restore it fourfold.” And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, since he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.””
‭‭Luke‬ ‭19:1-10‬ ‭ESV‬‬ Why do you think Zacchaeus was so eager to see Jesus? He was a “chief tax collector” and was rich. In spite of his wealth and power he was lacking something important. He didn’t have the peace that can only come from Jesus. He was so desperate to find what he lacked that he did the undignified act of climbing a tree. He didn’t care what other people thought. He wanted to have peace. Do you have God’s peace? Do you have the assurance of your salvation through faith in Jesus? May God bless you to share the peace that surpasses all comprehension. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Luke 18. In this chapter we read about Jesus healing the blind man in Jericho. “As he drew near to Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. And hearing a crowd going by, he inquired what this meant. They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.” And he cried out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” And those who were in front rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” And Jesus stopped and commanded him to be brought to him. And when he came near, he asked him, “What do you want me to do for you?” He said, “Lord, let me recover my sight.” And Jesus said to him, “Recover your sight; your faith has made you well.” And immediately he recovered his sight and followed him, glorifying God. And all the people, when they saw it, gave praise to God.” Luke‬ ‭18:35-43‬ ‭ESV‬‬ Being able to see is important to us. However, if we are blind there are a lot of resources that can help us to get along in society. In the time of Jesus, there were a few cultural/religious practices that encouraged charity but any person in such a situation lived on the fringe of survival. For Jesus to restore the man’s sight changed his life! As tenuous as blindness can be spiritual blindness is far worse. The result is eternal suffering. How can God use you to heal the spiritual blindness of others? May God bless you to witness the birth of a Christian! Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Luke 17. In this chapter we read about the Ten Lepers.“On the way to Jerusalem he was passing along between Samaria and Galilee. And as he entered a village, he was met by ten lepers, who stood at a distance and lifted up their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.” When he saw them he said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went they were cleansed. Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice; and he fell on his face at Jesus’ feet, giving him thanks. Now he was a Samaritan. Then Jesus answered, “Were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” And he said to him, “Rise and go your way; your faith has made you well.”” Luke‬ ‭17:11-19‬ ‭ESV‬‬ The rules for lepers were the ultimate social distancing. It was a very cruel separation from family, friends and society. How do you think the lepers felt being forced to stay away from their loved ones? Have you ever felt like a leper? Now imagine what it felt like to see your loved-ones after such a long separation! When we get to Heaven we will experience the ultimate reunion! Jesus healed the lepers for temporary joy and He heals us for eternal joy. God bless you as you anticipate the day when you see your love-ones in Heaven. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Luke 16. In this chapter we read about the Rich Man and Lazarus. “”There was a rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate was laid a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who desired to be fed with what fell from the rich man’s table. Moreover, even the dogs came and licked his sores. The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried, and in Hades, being in torment, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham far off and Lazarus at his side.” ‭‭Luke‬ ‭16:19-23‬ ‭ESV‬‬ When you read this story what do you think the point is? Are rich people bad and poor people good? No. But the key point is that your wealth means nothing in eternity. What you do with your prosperity indicates what kind of person you are. A person who has a relationship with Jesus is generous and compassionate. Is this true for you? I always believe that if God blesses you with abundance He wants you to do a lot with it! May God bless you with the joy of generosity! Pastor Tim