“The Author and Perfecter of Our Faith”

by DanWolgemuth on August 10, 2018

The author… the craftsman who uses words as his/her paint brush. The author… communicates with authority and power and reliability. An author leverages credentials, life experience, training, pedigree, and origin for the good of those who are the object of the communication.

That is why, when the Apostle John took dictation from Jesus using the pen of the Holy Spirit, he started seven letters to seven different churches by making the resume of the author the opening sentence.

“The words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand, who walks among the seven golden lampstands.”

“The words of the first and the last, who died and came to life.”

“The words of him who has the sharp two-edged sword.”

“The words of the Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and whose feet are like burnished bronze.”

“The words of him who has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars.”

“The words of the holy one, the true one, who has the key of David, who opens and no one will shut, who shuts and no one opens.”

“The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God’s creation.” (ESV)

The words… awe inspiring and humbling.

Several things are clear as I read the preamble to each of the seven letters; Jesus is not to be trifled with. He holds seven stars in His hand. His words are a two-edge sword. His eyes are like fire and His feet shine. He is awe producing. He occupies holy ground. Treating Him like “one of the boys” is a gross miscalculation. We do our best to walk worthy of our King, not to earn His favor, but to show that we have some comprehension of just how costly His grace is.

But He’s also approachable. He opens the door that He alone has the key to. He is our Savior who came and died and rose again. He is the creator, a witness… faithful and true. Our Amen.

His words matter. They convict and reassure. They penetrate and they soothe. They propel and they interrupt. They comfort and they condemn.

Shame argues against His love and mercy; just as sin offends His justice and holiness.

The words of Jesus… worship inducing and hope inciting. He will not be mocked by our arrogant defiance, and He will not recoil at our confession.

Grace and truth in words…

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An Epilogue

by DanWolgemuth on August 3, 2018

Dear July (an Epilogue) –

Okay, I know, you’re now officially a part of the past. History. Archives. But lingering reflections have caused me to continue to ponder what it is that I should be learning, remembering, changing, abandoning, embracing, and trusting as a result of the 31 days I spent with you.

A quick glance at my calendar and I realize that not a single day was unimportant. No throw-aways, no mulligans.

Every day inspired and exposed. Every day.

Fears. Worries. Ego.

Exposed.

But so were joy. Hope. Beautify. Simplicity.

During the month we got updates on dear friends with cancer, others battling Alzheimer’s. During the month we shed tears of laughter and tears of pain. None of them were wasted. None of them are wasted.

You keep track of all my sorrows.
You have collected all my tears in your bottle.
You have recorded each one in your book. (Psalm 56:8, NLT)

Every tear, every moment. Collected. Recorded.

Not to be used against us, but to remind us, to propel us, to challenge us, to embolden us.

God is for us. God delights in us. God loves us. God is with us.

Again, God is with us.

During the fireworks on the 4th, and the tears on the 10th. Jump starting my van, and hiking Mt. Princeton.

At a family reunion on Green Lake, Wisconsin, and in the solitude of my study.

Sharing popcorn with my 93-year-old mother-in-law, and Fruit Loops with a one year old. Grilled filet and Pop Tarts.

From the 1st to the 31st. In celebration… of birthdays, of anniversaries. In gut honest and embarrassing times of confession. In quickening memories of cycling accidents, and in the adventure of 36 hours with seven grandkids on a road trip to YFC Camp.

In awe. In submission. To the keeper of the calendar. To the giver of life. To the Master of the Universe.

Every day of my life was recorded in your book.
Every moment was laid out
before a single day had passed. (Psalm 139:16, NLT)

All 31 days. Every moment. Nothing wasted.

July.

Dear August…

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Dear July – continued…

July 6, 2018

This past week, while the World Cup Soccer tournament roared, and Major League Baseball edged past the midway point in the season… many in the world of sports focused on a 33-year-old from Akron, Ohio. LeBron James officially became LABron, with a four-year commitment to play basketball for the Los Angeles Lakers. What’s clear is […]

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Dear July –

June 29, 2018

Welcome back, dear friend. I’m looking forward to being with you soon. There’s always been something very special about you, but this year, more than ever, I wait to embrace you with renewed urgency and need. Rest has been illusive this past eleven months. I’ve been consistently in the classroom of trust and faith, and […]

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Jesus in the kitchen

June 22, 2018

Grace Wolgemuth loved to bake bread. I remember vividly walking through the back door of our home on Park Street in Wheaton, Illinois into the smell of freshly baked bread. It was a culinary hug. A whole wheat welcome mat. My Mom had the recipe, technique, baking and timing down to a science. But before […]

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My True-Blue Line

June 15, 2018
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Acadia National Park is a national treasure. A tribute to the creativity and power of God. Mary and I just concluded a week in Bar Harbor, Maine that included an exploration of several of the robust Acadia hiking trails. While notably different than the trails we’re used to in Colorado, they were equally as awe […]

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“Unless you turn and become like children…”

June 8, 2018

There weren’t many on the route from Colorado to Nebraska. The migration pattern typically leads in the other direction. But we had Lake McConaughy on our mind. And so, we rendezvoused at a camp site… three camp sites to be precise. It was our first family camping weekend, with eight adults, ten children (our grands), […]

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Scotland 1996

June 1, 2018

I had just finished an intense six month project in Folkestone, England with General Electric. As a family, we chose to end our assignment with a trip north into the beautiful west coast of Scotland. Rustic, rough, underdeveloped and breathtaking. On a blustery July day we stumbled upon a “Sheepdog Contest”. Authentic and poignant, we […]

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From Bernice to Juni… with love

May 25, 2018
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Knitting needles in the hands of Bernice Cargo. Mary’s Grandmother was a master. And last night, in our kitchen, Bernice’s legacy was on display. Juni, our 18-month-old granddaughter was a willing dress-up doll for Mary as she pulled an aged wardrobe back into public view.  When Juni was clad in a meticulously constructed blue sweater […]

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In the Classroom at Smitty’s

May 11, 2018

I was completely perplexed, inexperienced, and exceptionally cheap. A sprinkler system malfunction was not going to stump me. I’ve drained and restarted the same system for 12 years, and year 13 was not going to be any different… but it was, and is. Multiple zones operating simultaneously and inconsistently was beyond my capacity to diagnose […]

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