“For God is not a God of confusion but of peace…” (1 Corinthians 14:33).
Well… it’s been a whirlwind of a summer, and I quite clearly haven’t gotten around to updating this blog in a long time. I have seen countless demonstrations of God’s grace over the past months and am confident I will see His good works continue through the upcoming quarter at UC Davis and on into eternity. After all, “… to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift” (Ephesians 4:7 NASB). Why is grace on my mind in the first place?
Though my thoughts are somewhat jumbled at the moment, I can think of three main reasons for a grace-centric disposition. 1) I feel disappointed in myself that I have not dedicated the time to blogging my spiritual reflections for the past many weeks given that doing so strengthens my relationship with God and keeps me focused on things Heavenly. Thankfully, the Father’s grace tells me not to worry about my countless shortcomings. 2) I realize I will face many trials during the upcoming academic term, and a holy abundance of grace will prove invaluable during this period. 3) I have had several recent experiences that highlight God’s grace in allowing me to do the things I love (e.g. hiking, mountaineering) and not kill myself in the process! Here’s a very brief background on reason number three.
This blog demonstrates that I love hiking in the great outdoors and worshipping God in the process. Some would debate the theological basis and significance of what I feel is one of my spiritual “callings,” but I feel that the Father has guided me to pray over His people and Creation from the mountaintops. To these ends I had two primary adventures this summer. In light of God’s graciousness for brevity, the photos and captions will tell the rest of the story.
Freedom is not a gift bestowed upon us by other men, but a right that belongs to us by the laws of God and nature. –Benjamin Franklin
Today is a day when many Americans celebrate their liberty and the birth of the United States with family get togethers, backyard barbecues, and evening fireworks. But let’s not forget the sacrifices that countless individuals have made to secure this freedom—the young men who fought on battlefields ranging from the American Revolution to Iraq, those oppressed or lost in moments of social reform. These are individuals that dedicated their lives to the preservation of righteous ideals, and they deserve our utmost gratitude. In a similar vein, Jesus died upon the cross to bring us freedom from sin, death, and the heinous grip of the devil. So today, take a moment to remember the privilege of freedom, not only of our constitutional freedoms, but also of the spiritual freedom secured for us through Christ’s death and resurrection “because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death” (Romans 8:2 NIV).