I HAVE BEEN POSTING THIS BLOG WEEKLY SINCE JULY 2014. I NOW NEED YOUR FEEDBACK ON ITS CONTINUATION. PLEASE LET ME KNOW IF IT’S CONTINUATION IS HELPFUL TO YOU IN THINKING THROUGH THE TOPICS I ADDRESS. FEEL FREE TO COMMENT ON YOUR NEEDS AND THOUGHTS ABOUT IT.
REV. RICHARD C. EYER
ISAIAH 8: 17
Waiting for one who is hiding is frustrating. When will he show himself? That’s exactly what God is doing now, showing Himself. Although he has shown Himself in Jesus, many have not yet seen him with the eyes of faith. God is all around us and has revealed himself for our salvation in Jesus Christ. God is not some sort of abstract idea or a constructed ideal we have created in our minds. Read all about Him in the Bible. Further, come to church in worship of the God who has made Himself known in the God-man, Jesus. There we can see Him with the eyes of faith. This doesn’t mean we will see Him in the flesh with our eyes, at least not until he reveals Himself on the Last Day, on the Day of Judgment. But speak to Him now in prayer! Worship Him Sunday by finding him in His body and Blood in the Sacrament of Holy Communion. We may want to believe in a god of our own making, in our own mind, to be what we want him to be if we could, but He is who He is and with the eyes of faith we can see Him in the Bread and Wine of Holy Communion. And we can hear Him in the sermon that speaks to the heart of our needs. God lives and will judge our trust in Him through our acceptance of Jesus as God in the flesh. The Lord be with you here and now!
Almighty God, as you have revealed yourself to the world through the ages, reveal yourself
“The living but unborn are persons in the sight of God from the time of conception.”  Abortion is the start of things that signifies change for the worse in our world. The subject is hot again in Congress and the media. “You shall not kill” is the fifth commandment in the Bible. “Do you believe in God and in Jesus as God-in-the-flesh who came to earth to save us from our damnation for our sins?”
Life is full of conflict in this world. Wars and rumors of wars persist daily throughout the world. But God brings peace, beginning with peace of mind as a result of our repentance for our sins and the promise of forgiveness and the start of a new day. Of course, this forgiveness doesn’t mean, “do whatever you want because God will forgive you.” God reads deeper into us than that and offers us healing for the inclination itself, both through forgiveness and the offer of His inner presence that transforms our lives. There is no sin that can destroy us in this life for the next if we repent now and live for Him today. Living for Him means learning to confess our wrongs and finding peace in His forgiveness. And with forgiveness comes our return to God in faithfulness to Him. Rejoice, God loves you! Do you love Him?
Almighty God, Father Son and Holy Spirit, as you have revealed yourself to us through our repentance and the forgiveness you offer, work in us your forgiveness that changes our lives and makes us one with you through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen
 Jeremiah 1:5 in the Bible.
I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail.
Faith wavers at times. It’s not as though it is lost, but we are distracted at times and human nature takes charge of us, brushing aside faith. It can happen easily such as in moments of stress or when distracted by something or someone and temptation draws near. I am thinking for example, when driving in heavy traffic and someone cuts you off. Faith takes a back seat and human nature at its worst takes over. We curse the driver or pull up to him closer than we should. We get so used to sinful human nature taking over that we forget our calling in Christ to “love one another.”
Our faith can be very genuine, but at times we slip back into habits and behaviors that don’t fit the faith. Husbands and wives can slip back into old patterns of their weaknesses that they thought they had laid aside, and arguments arise. We’re all human and we’re all sinners, but we are also saints. A saint is not someone who never does wrong. A saint is someone who recognizes when he has done wrong and apologizes for it and asks for forgiveness, often from the partner we love and cherish. Faith plays a big role in marriage as it does elsewhere.
A failed faith is one that has completely abandoned God. We know he’s there, but He has been set aside and we go the way of human nature without Him. Jesus knows us better than we know ourselves, and still he offers us forgiveness as a lifestyle with Him and with others. Talk to those you love and support each other in times of sinful behavior so that you might be one with Him again. God loves you! Jesus died for you! The Holy Spirit lives in you. Go forth in faith; in confidence that His forgiveness renews your life.
Lord Jesus, help me to live my faith! Amen
“Be strengthened by the grace that is in Christ Jesus.” 2 Timothy 2:1
What keeps you going each day when you are worn out and tired in the day-to-day energies required to make you responsible and accountable to others and to God? I suppose exhaustion is no excuse for ignoring of things that need to be done and will mess things up if you just didn’t do them. The result of not doing things is often guilt and anger toward oneself. But God knows we are not perfect and yet still loves us even when we are at our worst in things. The Lord loves us when we are down as much as he does when we are on top of things. In fact it is God’s love that comes down on us when we need it at times like this. “Come to me, all you who are heavily burdened down and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28).
Living the Christian life is not easy, but it is certain. That is, the certainty is that God loves us in Jesus and even gave his life for us. We are called to live in that certainty even when we feel down. Feelings are fickle and certainty is faith; be certain that God loves you even when you don’t live up to everything you want to do and be. Jesus death on the cross might look like failure to others, but to us who put our faith in God, we know that Jesus’ death is a victory, not a failure. Likewise, our lives are a victory over every failure and frustration we may feel or experience because we live under God’s forgiveness and can rejoice in it! Be strengthened by the grace and love that is in Christ Jesus.
Lord Jesus, make me to walk in your ways even when everything looks dark for me because I am yours and your victory over sin and death have become mine by faith and by your love for me. Amen
To develop a personal devotional life, begin by deciding what kind of a person you are: a night person or an early morning person. Are you most clear-headed at the beginning or end of the day? Mid-day devotional life is hard to sustain due to demands and distractions around us. Select a time of the day best for you. Make it part of your regular schedule. Let me suggest practicing your personal devotions Monday through Friday. Next, provide for yourself some visual aids to prevent your mind from wandering off to other things that occupy your life. A cross on the wall before you may help focus your attention.
The central focus is the Word of God. Read just a few verses or even one verse that strikes you as personally important. After reading, sit back and think about what you have read and how it applies to you at this time in your life. Turn to prayer. Begin with the Lord’s Prayer or with Psalms used as prayers. You might include in prayer a confession of sins, thankfulness for God’s gifts and the particular needs you have for his help. In praying for personal needs you will no doubt list worries and anxieties that trouble you. Trust your heavenly Father to carry through on things you prayed for so you can live at peace and do what needs to be done faithfully. This letting go, by putting things into God’s hands, will lead to the gift of God’s peace that makes your life a life of peace in the midst of stress. We are not alone with Christ. We are with brothers and sisters in Christ who stand before him in prayer.
Lord Jesus, help me to open my heart and mind to you and ask for your help and guidance today. Help me to be faithful in all challenges of the day that call me to live with you in heart and mind. Come, Lord Jesus. Amen
Isaiah 60: 1-2, and 9b
“. . . the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. . . . He has made you beautiful!”
God has made you beautiful, not referring to physical beauty, but to the beauty of his holiness in you. This is the message of Easter and of the whole Christian life. This doesn’t mean life will always go well for you in this fallen world, but it does mean that the Lord is always with you in all of life’s troubles. Life has its ups and downs, but the Lord walks with you to assure you that whatever comes, He is with you to pick you up again when you stumble. Ultimately, to carry you in his arms to heaven some day.
But even now in the midst of life’s struggles he holds us up with his arms of love and care around us. He has suffered himself in his suffering. He knows what you are going through and he will not abandon you. In all your struggles he is there with you and knowing that, is the beginning of your comfort. As once a hospital chaplain I was part of God’s outreach to those in distress. I saw the comfort and relief of suffering people felt in knowing that God was with them and in me as his messenger. When life gets us down at times, lift your head up and pray to God for his presence, comfort and help to come to your rescue. Trust in Him, whatever may come.
Lord God, heavenly Father, send your Son Jesus Christ to stand with me, and fill me with your Holy Spirit that I might bear all that comes my way, knowing that you will lift me up and give me new life again. Amen