Jake Bohlender

Yesterday my heart was ripped out of it’s socket. I got a phone call from
DeWayne Bohlender at about 9:00am. I knew he wasn’t involved with the
church set up anymore, so it had to be about Jake. My heart stopped!

It was confirmed – Jake had a rough night and had died about 5 minutes
before DeWayne called me. Shoot! We had prayed in earnest. We had prayed
for healing. We had done an anointing. We thought the best. If you were
to sum it up in Destaney’s words (Jake’s 6 year-old daughter) “If I were
God, I would have healed him!” Me too, Destaney, Me too! In fact, I am
sure there isn’t anyone who knew Jake that wouldn’t have chosen that very
thing for Jake, except God.

But God came out in this story. God was here – right where he was when his
own son died. He was right there, crying with us. This isn’t the way he
designed us to have to live. This isn’t his ultimate plan. But there’s
still a war going on between good and evil and we’re getting caught in the
crossfire. It hurts. It’s painful. It’s wrong. But I know that someday
God is going to put an end to it. Someday God is going to put an end to it
and make things right.

Jakes Testimony is a strong committed one. He told me that he lived the
wild life for awhile when he was going through his divorce. He probably
lived a little on that side before he got married too. But he made things
right with God. He was ready to go. Not too many of us could actually say
the same thing. Are we as sure of our salvation, as Jake was of his? Many
people aren’t. Are you?

I really struggled with the idea that in the New Testament, people were
raised up, healed, resurrected. But in the end, I sought to trust God’s
sovereignty. He knew what was best. He heard all of our earnest prayers.
He knew Jakes heart. And he made the ultimate choice. I trust him with
that.

So, yesterday we lose a good man. We lose a friend. We lose a person who
had some responsibilities in life in raising a daughter by himself. But in
the end, God’s still in charge. He will see us through this. He will see
us through the darkness.

Lord, I pray for DeWayne, Connie, Destaney, Angie and all the other people
in the extended family. I pray you will fill them with your peace. I pray
that goodbye will not be forever, but that all of the family will be
reunited at the coming of Christ. I pray you will fill them with the Holy
Spirit and will fill them with a desire to follow you. Please wake up any
latent ideas about following you and help all of us to meet Jake again.
Thank you for his life, his testimony and his friendship, Lord. Amen.

Fear God and Keep His Commandments

S: “Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter:
Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. For
God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing
whether it is good or evil.” Ecclesiastes 12:13-14

O: In this book, Solomon outlines many wise and foolish things. But
here he says is the conclusion of the matter. Fear God and keep his
commandments. He’s saying it matters how we act. This passage is also very
similar to Revelation 14:6-12

A: Question for you today. Do you fear God? Do you honor God with
your beliefs AND your actions? That’s really the heart of the
message – how we act affects the outcome of our lives.

P: Lord, I pray you will help us today to serve you in word and
action. Please fill us with the Holy Spirit who changes our hearts and
changes who we are into men and women that are like you.

Calling to Holiness

S:</b? "As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life
worthy of the calling you have received.” “…put off your old self…be
made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created
to be like God in the true righteousness and holiness.” Ephesians 4:1,
22-24

O: Paul is not a believer in cheap grace, but a true believer towards
seeking AND obtaining holiness. He very much puts this in our camp,
for us to accomplish. The direction is for us to take action, not to sit
around and wait for God.

A: My problem, I don’t take enough action. I prefer passivity rather
than action when it comes to changing my life. Thus I’ve gotten myself in
trouble many times, because I refused to take a decided effort and make
change in my life. Sometimes I fear the changes that will be required of
me. Sometimes I fear the things asked of me.

P: Lord, I know that you are my king and my God. I know I can trust
you. Please help me to fear you or fear to follow you where you want to
lead me. I submit to you today and ask you to lead me to holiness. Please
change my heart and change who I am into the kind of man you want me to be.
I come, Lord, to you. I want to follow you. Please direct my life to
listen and change with you.