Are We There Yet

November 12, 2017 • Pastor Tyler Gramling

Have you ever heard the phrase, “Are we there yet?” Maybe it came out of the mouth of your child during a road trip, or maybe when you found yourself lost when trying to get to a new friend’s house. The truth is, much of life can be filled with waiting—with a journey that never seems to reach a destination. So how are we to handle the “waiting”? Is God with us even in the wilderness? Pastor Tyler Gramling shares God’s plan in the wilderness, and how God uses the waiting to strengthen our faith!

Superman Saves The Day

Day 38 • February 21, 2018

Their home was about to be foreclosed on. There was no hope among them as they packed the boxes up one after another... getting ready to leave the place they loved and grew up in. The home had been in the family since the 1950s... but it looked like the financial trouble the current members of the family found themselves in would be the end of the decades-old connection they had with the house. That is until Superman saved the day. In a dark corner of the garage sat an unmarked and long-forgotten box filled with comic books . In that box sat a copy of Action Comics #1 in great condition. What’s so special about that book? It was the very first appearance of Superman. Street value? Well north of a million dollars. That old comic from someone who lived long ago in the house was going to pay the amount due and keep the property safe. Miracles still happen. Sometimes superheroes save homes. Cancer re-checks come back unexplainably clear. Doomed marriages end in reconciliation not divorce. God hasn’t given up answering prayer... and He does so in any and every way He sees fit. Find yourself praying for something that seems hopeless? God wants to remind you that He is the author or hope. About to give up on something? Ready to quit on someone or yourself? Keep praying... God is working behind the scenes in ways you may not realize. Stay patient. Keep the faith. And don’t quit. And when things seem darkest and you don’t know where to turn... reach out. You’ll find yourself in the loving arms of a Savior who counts your tears and loves you more than you realize. Superman may be able to fly... but only Christ can heal a broken heart and bring joy to the beaten down. Hang in there... God’s got you.

Getting Into Harvard

Day 37 • February 20, 2018

Have you ever wondered how tough it is to get into Harvard? Recent data tells us that nearly forty thousand people apply to the school each year... and only five percent are accepted. In fact, the president of Harvard once stated that they could fill their entire incoming freshmen class with valedictorians from high schools around the country twice over. They only take the crème de la crème... the best of the best. It requires a near perfect transcript, an impeccable entrance essay, and just plain luck to get in. It’s a good thing Heaven isn’t like that. In fact, you don’t have to be perfect... or know how to play an instrument... or be at the top of your game in any discipline at all. You don’t have to submit an application or worry about receiving a rejection letter after trying so hard. The requirement for entry into a perfect eternity? A relationship with Jesus Christ. It’s simply telling God that you are giving up your way and accepting His. That you want Him to come into your heart and salvage you... to save you. It’s giving everything you understand about yourself to everything you understand about God. And the Bible says that when we do that we are guaranteed entry into a place far more spectacular than any ivy league building. We spend forever with Christ. In a perfect place free from pain, suffering, and worry. If you’ve never asked Christ into your life, I encourage you to reread that paragraph above and pray those things to Him. If you have prayed that prayer already... share it with someone you love. It could change them forever... and it’s the best decision they will ever make.

First Night Effect

Day 36 • February 19, 2018

There are many that find it very difficult to get a good night’s sleep away from their own bed. They toss and turn desperately looking for a few hours of uninterrupted rest... but it never seems to happen. Why? What is it about a different place that challenges the mind and body? Scientists have discovered that when we sleep in an unfamiliar place, the left side of our brain stays semi-awake while the right-side rests. We are more vigilant... ready to spring awake at a moment’s notice. The phenomenon is called the “the first night effect” and it affects millions of travelers every year. Does the brain not completely pause because it’s the body’s way of protecting itself? Is it the stress of different lights, smells, and sounds in a strange place? We may never know. For some of us the reason for not sleeping isn’t “the first night effect” at all. We go to bed stressed. Worried about the next day. The reason we can’t sleep isn’t some kind of brain issue... it’s a trust issue. We just can’t seem to put the pressure of the day behind us and it blocks our ability to slumber. Jesus has the answer. Look what He says in Matthew 11:28 “Then Jesus said, ‘Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.’” Want to sleep better at night... whether you’re at home or on the road? Trust God with what’s worrying you. Pray and ask God to shoulder what’s weighing you down. Leave your stresses at the foot of the cross and refuse to go back and pick them up. God is already working on those things in ways you can’t see yet... and your worry doesn’t help Him do that. Trust more. Worry less. A stronger faith leads to a deeper sleep.