From: Rich Carlson
Date: October 21, 2020
Subject: It's October 21; Good Morning Union

“He does not treat us as our sins deserve, or repay us according to our iniquities…”          Psalm 103:10-13

Dad’s third verse on the theme of the Absolute Love of God, reminds me that He not only loves me and has given His life for me, but that He “does not treat me as my sins deserve or repay me according to my iniquities.” Then the psalmist gives three examples to try and explain the Father’s love. It’s as:

  1. High as the heavens are above the earth
  2. Far as the east is from the west
  3. Great as a Father’s love

So, how high are the heavens? How far is east from west, and how great can a father’s love be? I like to remind myself that no one has ever reached the end of the heavens, and he didn’t say “as far as the north is from the south.” If I go north long enough I’ll start going south and if I go south long enough I’ll start going north. North and south have an end, but no matter how far I go west I’ll ever start going east!!

And a father’s love never ends; at least not THE Father’s love! And that love does not keep score or even treat “fairly.” I don’t get what I deserve, I get so much more from my Father.

When I was a kid I remember singing a chorus in church. It came back to me on my walk this morning.

“Thank you Lord for saving my soul,

Thank you Lord for making me whole,

Thank you Lord for giving to me

Life more abundant, so full and free.”

There may have been legalists in my church growing up but my church has not been “legalistic!” It’s always been about Jesus- “saving my soul… making be whole… giving me life so full and free.” David Kinneman talks about “sustainability” and “resilience” as two qualities in a Christian that will help him or her “stay the course,” and not just survive but thrive in spite of the junk of this world. James called is “perseverance,” and says that it comes as I learn to confront the trials of life, not trying to defeat the enemy but to focus on the Father. When I do, says James, I will be “perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” It can’t get any better than that while I wait for Jesus to come and finish the process of completeness in Him.

Focus, focus, focus, don’t get distracted. Sustainability, resilience, perseverance come as I learn more about the absolute love of God, beyond what I deserve, and focus on Him.

Have a great day focusing,

Pastor Rich


Quote for the day:      “All of us could take a lesson from the weather. It pays no attention to criticism, it just keeps on doing what it’s supposed to do-- producing weather.”


PS        Operation Christmas Child boxes are now available in front of Campus Ministries. Pick up a box (or more) and a label, choose a gender and an age for your child and then go to some place like the Dollar Store and pack your shoebox full of goodies for kids who are living in war-torn or famine-stricken places around the world. It’s great fun and a great way to do something for someone else. Last year we packed over 200 boxes!! The only restrictions are no chocolate (it melts) and now guns or war toys- make it fun and make a little child happy at Christmas!