Saying goodbye

The Bergstedt Family at our goodbye lunch.

Family is so very very important to me. I am unfortunately having to deal with one of my children moving across the country from Sacramento to Florida. She leaves on her cross-country drive on Friday and my wife and I had to say our goodbyes today. My daughter is a specialist in the area of customer service and call centers where she has been working for over 15 years.

As she leaves us behind, we are also losing the mom and dad of our puppy, Chewie. Foxy and Frankie are traveling with my daughter as she drives the 3000+ miles to her new home in Florida. My daughter is dealing with physical issues that are very very impacting to her life. She will be addressing the illness with new medical staff/doctors in Florida and we will be very interested in following her progress in her pursuit of proper medical follow through.

If you are so inclined, it would be great if you would say a prayer for her safe travels over the next week and for her to settle in to her new home, city and work.

My daughter, Allison, is a special young lady. She was so thoughtful that she created a special day for me for Father’s Day 2019 early where we played miniature golf and went out for lunch afterwards. Her card to me was so thoughtful. My wife and I have been blessed to have her in our same geographic location her whole life which is making it so difficult to see her leave us now. We will miss her terribly but we know God will watch over her life and bless her in her locale.

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Keep it or shave it?

I have been ignoring the growing stubble on my face. Several people have pointed it out to me and have wondered when I will be shaving it off. So, I decided to make an inquiry on Facebook on my timeline and on several other groups that I participate in.

This is the picture I posted to Facebook:

The majority of responders voted for me to keep it. However my wife held the trump card and the result shows here.

This is the post-battle result:

Dealing with Media and my spiritual life

Media has influenced people since the beginning, not just in the technology age. The images we see, the music we hear, and all other varieties of media change our hearts and minds which in turn, shape our attitudes and actions. The ideas that will be presented in this series of articles  aren’t a set of new stricter rules or boundaries for me to follow. That would become just one more arbitrary moral code for me to reject in my life. The goal is to reset my heart and mind and focus them on my relationship in Christ.

I want to challenge myself to make the most of the technology and media in my life to point others to Christ, then share God’s love, and to ultimately draw me closer to Him.  He will speak to me about the way I use media and expose how I may be allowing media to use/abuse me.  This is the verse to consider regarding the discussion questions:

1 John 2:15-17 — ‘Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. ‘

1 John 2:15-17
https://my.bible.com/bible/1/1JN.2.15-17

I need to discuss these questions:

What does it mean to crave the things of this world?
What sorts of things should I crave?
What ideas do you have for how you can redirect your cravings for the things of this world toward the things of God?

You Version – Bible app

Have you ever tried to read the Bible? Maybe or maybe not. An app you should investigate is known as You Version.

This app will let you download multiple versions of the Bible and for some you can have the app read the passage to you.

It also has daily reading plans in a wide variety of topics. Check it out!!!!!

Go to the App Store or Google Play and look for You Version.

Prayers for a man of God for Father’s Day 2019

Prayer is a life-changing, uninterrupted connection to our heavenly Father and oh how he loves to hear his children pray! Check out these 10 prayers to pray for your life using God’s Word.

1. Pray for your work.

“Lord, I pray that You would bless my work. That I would be diligent and prosperous. That You would give me wisdom and discernment. God, I pray You would give me strength to walk the opportunities you provide. Thank you, Lord.”

Do you see a person skilled in his work? He will stand in the presence of kings. He will not stand in the presence of the unknown. Proverbs 22:29 CSB

2. Pray for your heart, soul, and mind.

“Father, I praise You for my life as Your unique creation. Please guard my heart and mind, Jesus. Protect me from temptation and fill me up with the good things I needs. You’ve promised to fill my soul with what I need and I ask You to do just that.”

For he has satisfied the thirsty and filled the hungry with good things. Psalm 107:9 CSB

3. Pray for healing from the past.

“God, would You heal the wounds of my heart? You’ve promised healing to those who submit to You. Lord, please smooth the scars of past hurts and brokenness. May Your healing permeate my being, inside and out.”

Heal me, Lord, and I will be healed; save me, and I will be saved, for you are my praise. Jeremiah 17:14 CSB

4. Pray for courage.

“Lord, You are gracious and merciful, yet You are all-powerful and understanding. This world can be a fearful place and I pray that You would give me courage. Lord, infuse my character with courage for daily decisions and the difficult ones as well.”

The fear of the Lord leads to life; one will sleep at night without danger. Proverbs 19:23 CSB

5. Pray for your leadership.

“God, You have provided Your Word and I am so grateful. May Your Word guide me as the leader of my home. May my leadership skills be empowered by your wisdom. I trust that You will lead in my hand and heart in my relationships, my work, my home, community and church.”

Now if any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God—who gives to all generously and ungrudgingly—and it will be given to him. James 1:5 CSB

6. Pray for wisdom in finances.

“Lord, money yields the greatest potential to cause problems in a home. Please give me wisdom as I seeks to honor You with finances. I praise You for the blessings You’ve provided and I pray that You would help me to always honor You first.”

Keep your life free from the love of money. Be satisfied with what you have, for he himself has said, I will never leave you or abandon you. Hebrews 13:5 CSB

7. Pray for a heart for the Lord.

“Father, please give me a pure heart for You. May I seek to love You and trust You with everything I have. Protect me from opinions intended to sway me from Your Word.”

Don’t work only while being watched, as people-pleasers, but as slaves of Christ, do God’s will from your heart. Ephesians 6:6 CSB

8. Pray for my speech.

“Father, in a day when the world speaks with complete corruption, keep my words pure before You. I pray that I would use my words just as You would have me to. I ask You for purposeful conversations in my life with all I come in contact with.”

No foul language should come from your mouth, but only what is good for building up someone in need, so that it gives grace to those who hear. Ephesians 4:29 CSB

9. Pray for my friendships.

“Lord, I pray that You would provide additional encouraging friendships for me. That I would know I am never alone because You are with me, but I ask for others to speak into my life and sharpen me as I sharpen them.”

Iron sharpens iron, and one person sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17 CSB

10. Pray for me to be a good father.

“God, I thank You that You are the good, good Father. Would you help my parenting to reflect You? May my children know Your heavenly love personally and experience it through me, their earthly father.”

Fathers, don’t stir up anger in your children, but bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. Ephesians 6:4 CSB

Do you want to know when Jesus will return?

The disciples asked Jesus about the time that He was going to come to rule in Jerusalem — Then they gathered around him and asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”

This is what His response was:

He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

Jesus established the truth that God is in control of the times and dates that different events would occur in the life of the church. But, He also promised that the Holy Spirit was going to come to empower them to be His witnesses all the way around the world.

The question we should ask is “Am I allowing the Holy Spirit to work through me and am I being a witness where my mission field is?”  Being missional is an important part of my Christian life.  I have been wrapped up at times in my Christian experience and not been able to be a witness.  Witnessing was the farthest thing from my mind.  I would have nothing to witness about!!  I am experiencing a different focus now that I feel better mentally. How long will this experience last is what I don’t know? I am trying to take steps to prevent a relapse into depression.

One of the things I am doing is becoming an online missionary with a group that uses the internet to challenge readers/visitors to experience God.  I also have been given the opportunity to participate in the missions committee at my church.  Another step, I’ve taken is to be more open about my illness.  I have asked friends to challenge me if they recognize that I am spinning down into a depressed state.  Another important way to stay in a positive mental state is to be gainfully used in the lives of other people.  So, I have been given another chance to perform in this way by teaching senior citizens how to use their technology devices more effectively.

All of these efforts must be driven by the gifts that I have been given by God.  Dealing with mental illness has been a negative influence throughout my career. It has caused me to make job changes several times.

But in each change God was in control!! I didn’t know it at the time but He carried me through. Our knowledge of the dates He will perform the miracles told of in the Bible is not important, what is important is what are we doing for Him today.

May God grant you the desires of your heart today!!