December 2013

Merry Christmas! May this be your best Christmas ever. It will be my 45th one in prison but I’m praising God with the host of heaven, shouting, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” 1

What Pleases God?

Many of us have lived our lives being a man pleaser. I know I was one. This is the way I received my acceptance and identity, but it was never enough to satisfy my deepest need.

So naturally, when I asked Christ into my heart, I tried hard to please God with good works. But I found out that I could never do enough to please God religiously, no matter how much I prayed, read His word or went to church.

Finally, the LORD showed me that only Jesus, His Son, could please God for us through His sacrifice on the cross for our sin. “For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.2

Faith Pleases God…

We make it so complicated, but it really is simple to please God. We try hard, but the LORD wants us to simply trust in His finished works at the cross.

Jesus made it possible for us to please God. According to Scripture, we can only please God by faith in Christ.

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January 2011

Welcome to a new year of monthly views at the Abounding Love website. I pray this will be an exciting year as you build your trust in God. For me, I am dedicating this year to Restorative Justice, both for victims and offenders to be reconciled to God through the finished work of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Restorative Justice

If you were to Google "restorative justice," several different views would come up. For instance, one view may stress spiritual restoration more than another. Any effort is a step in the right direction, but from my experience, it is hard to see a work of "justice" without God's grace working in our hearts to restore righteousness through faith in Christ. This work provides the ability to restore damaged relationships through a divine flow of truth, justice, peace, love, mercy, compassion, and humility available only through God.

Justice has to do with what is right and fair for all mankind. In the spiritual sense, we are all guilty, have sinned against God, and done His kingdom great harm, but...

"...God in His gracious kindness declares us not guilty. He has done this through Christ Jesus who has freed us by taking away our sins. For God sent Jesus to take the punishment for our sins and to satisfiy God's anger against us. We are made right with God when we believe that Jesus shed His blood, sacrificing His life for us. God was being entirely fair and just when He did not punish those who sinned in former times. And He is entirely fair and just in this present time when He declares sinners to be right in His sight because they believe in Jesus."1

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March 2011

It is always a joy to come to you with another Monthly View. The Lord has a wonderful month of blessings in store for us by faith. "I pray that God, Who gives you hope, will keep you happy and full of peace as you believe in Him. May you overflow with hope through the power of the Holy Spirit."1

We're All Connected

A study in restorative justice must go back to the beginning of time to see how things were, in order to restore things back into a former state of righteousness. We're all connected to one another, whether you believe in the theory of evolution, or in God's creation of mankind. My faith is based on God's Word, where He says:

"Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth. So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him, male and female He created them. Then God blessed them, and God said to them, 'Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it, have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.'"2

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May 2011

What a privilege it is to bring forth another monthly view from a Biblical perspective. This perspective may be a whole new reality for you, but as you humble yourself, a new identity will spring forth, causing new boundaries to be set in your life. "The Word is a lamp to your feet, and a light to your path."1

Restorative Promise

When I reflect on the early years of my life, I have many regrets. I did things that bring deep remorse, and I regret things I didn't do. If you think and feel the same way, I have some good news for you. God promises to restore all those years, so you can live above all those regrets with victory and vision. Listen to God's promise to you spoken through the prophet Joel:

"I will restore to you the years the swarming locusts have eaten...you shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the LORD your God. Then you will know that I am in the midst of Israel."2

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July 2011

Welcome to the abounding-love view for the month. "...God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. And since we have been made right in God's sight by the blood of Christ, He will certainly save us from God's judgment."1

What about guilt?

Once in a while, a letter arrives that I must share. Since I know many are struggling with guilt, I share what this dear woman wrote:

"I'm twenty-five years old. I just got married, and we have a two-year old with another on the way. I am writing to you because I read that you found God and became a Christian.

First, let me tell you that I am glad to hear that. I'm sure that prison is a difficult place, and I'm sure having faith helps a great deal.

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September 2011

Welcome to aboundinglove.org. This month we are celebrating Recovery Month with the rest of the recovering addicts throughout the United States. I pray that your visits to this website will be a healing experience to be remembered forever.

Recovery Month

National Recovery Month (September) is a national observance that educates Americans on the fact that addiction treatment and mental health services can enable those with a substance use or mental disorder to live a healthy and rewarding life.

Each September, thousands of treatment and recovery programs and services around the country celebrate their successes and share them with their neighbors, friends, and colleagues in an effort to educate the public about recovery, how it works, for whom, and why. There are millions of Americans whose lives have been transformed through recovery. These successes often go unnoticed by the broader population; therefore, Recovery Month provides a vehicle to celebrate these accomplishments.

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November 2011

Welcome to a new Monthly View, celebrating with thanksgiving all that Jesus Christ did for us through His finished works two thousand years ago to secure our salvation.

"Always be joyful. Keep on praying. No matter what happens,
always be thankful, for this is God's will for you who belong
to Christ Jesus."1

Thank God For You...

Your e-mails and letters of encouragement, comfort, acceptance, and love means so much to me. I received a letter recently which was humbling to read, saying:

"I have read your testimony in your book "Will You Die For Me?
I wanted to tell you that your story is inspiring to all who will
listen to in the future. Stay strong in the faith for better
days are always ahead. Your brother in Christ Jesus. Aaron"

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January 2010

As you read this month's view, let us declare a mighty move of God in our lives for 2010. In the book of Exodus, the Lord used a mighty strong west wind to blow a plague of locusts from Pharaoh's land into the Red Sea.1 For 2000 years, the mighty wind of the Holy Spirit has been blowing from the throne room of God to remove the sin and darkness from our lives. By faith, all we have to do is be willing to call upon the Lord for deliverance.

Call Upon Me

The Lord says, "Call to Me, and I will answer you and show you great and mighty things which you do not know."2 One way to call out to the Lord is to simply cry "HELP!" He promises to answer you and to show you great and mighty things which you don't know. He is waiting for you to respond.

Another way to call out to the Lord is to proclaim what God's word says about the blood of Jesus. We over come the world, the flesh, and the devil by the blood of the Lamb, and the word of our testimony, while laying down our lives.3 That is, we overcome by confessing what God's word says about the blood of Jesus.

The blood of the old Testament sacrifices cleansed the temple, so the Holy Spirit could dwell therein. In the same way, the blood of Jesus cleanses our sin, so the Holy Spirit can dwell within us. We are the temple of the Holy Spirit.4 We are not our own, for we are bought with the price of Jesus's blood.5 The Lord "...loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen."6

After Jesus' death and resurrection, He told His disciples to wait in Jerusalem for the promise of the Father, until they would be clothed with power from on high.7 Fifty days later (on the day of Pentecost), "...there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them, and they were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance."8

From the Mailbox

This same power of the blood and of the Holy Spirit is still available today. You may be in a similar situation as Jessika, a young woman who wrote, saying: "I happened to come across your web site today, and I'm really impressed! I'm so glad you've embraced the Lord. You are an inspiration to me. It's really hard for me, but I'm trying. Sometimes, well a lot of the time, I wonder if God really could love me. Have you ever felt like that?

My mom says she can always feel the spirit of Jesus with her. I wish I had that feeling. How can I get there, you know? I'm so lonely. I have friends. I know men who want to be with me, but this isn't fulfilling to me. I want something real. I want to be happy. Are you happy? What if I'm just a lost soul for good. Is is possible? Love, Jessika."

Today, the mighty wind of the Holy Spirit is flowing from the throne room of God to fill our hearts to overflowing. The Lord is no respecter of persons.9 He loves us all the same, and stands ready to bless us [make us happy] through faith in His precious blood and righteousness. As King David wrote, "Oh, how happy are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Happy is the man to whom the LORD shall not impute [charge] sin."10

Proclaiming the Blood

I encouraged Jessika to print out The Blood of Jesus Christ Scriptures from the home page Study Chart Galleries link. This chart not only offers the Scriptures, but instructions to meditate, recognize, confess, pray and praise God for Jesus' precious blood. Jessika agreed to give it a try, but she said, "To be honest, I'm kind of scared to do this, and I don't know why." I think I know.

First, "God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."11 Satan is the author of deception, which brings fear and confusion, hindering us from understanding the revelation of the blood of Jesus Christ. Secondly, worldly leaders, even religious ones, can bring deception. "...the rulers of this world have not understood it [the wisdom of God], if they had, they would never have crucified our glorious Lord."12

This is the wisdom of God's love: "He alone made it possible for you to be in Christ Jesus. For our benefit, God made Christ to be wisdom itself. He is the one who made us accepted to God. He made us pure and holy, and He gave Himself to purchase [with His blood] our freedom."13 This is foolishness according to man's wisdom.14

As you slowly meditate on the blood of Jesus, recognize that you are bought with a price, and brought into the presence of God. Confess each Scripture with your mouth daily. God's glory and presence will follow. Pray from your throne room position in the Name of Jesus Christ. Praise God that because of the blood of Jesus, you are seated with Christ in the heavenly places.

Confessing the Blood Scriptures

It is important for you to find a quiet place to prepare for a time in God's presence. Be sure to have your Bible, along with the Blood of Jesus verses. Confession means "to say the same thing that God says," concerning who you are in the precious blood of Jesus.

Begin to speak to your Heavenly Father, acknowledging His Word, His blood, and the Holy Spirit. Simply say, "Father, I am so thankful for the promises of Your Word. You say if I call on You, You will answer, and show me great and mighty things that I do not know. I do not know Your presence right now, but I believe You will reveal it to me if I will just call. So I call on You by faith to enter into Your presence with the blood of the Lamb.

Your Word says: I am loved and washed from sin by Jesus' blood, Who made me a king and a priest. I am blood bought for Your purpose, causing me to reign as a priest in Your kingdom. I overcome the devil by the blood of the Lamb and the word of my testimony. I am purchased from the slave market of sin with the blood of Jesus. I am justified by grace, redeemed by Christ and declared righteous by faith. I am made right in Your sight by the blood of Christ and saved from Your judgment. I am bought with a high price, therefore I glorify You in spirit and body, which is Your temple. I am blessed, because I share in the benefits of the blood of Jesus Christ.

I have in remembrance who I am in Christ, because of the blood of the New Covenant. I am purchased by grace, free through the blood of Your Son and my sins are forgiven. I am Your property, once far away from You, but now I'm near to You by the blood. I have peace with You through the blood of the cross, and I'm reconciled to You. Jesus took His blood into heaven's Most Holy Place, securing my salvation forever. His blood purified my heart from dead works to serve and worship You, the true and living God. I am forgiven of my sins, which would be impossible without the shedding of blood.

I have boldness to enter heaven's Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus. I have a new and living way to enter into Your presence, open to me through the death of Jesus. I have come to Jesus, the mediator of the New covenant, and been forgiven by His blood. I am set apart unto You and made holy by the blood of Jesus, Who suffered for my sin. I have an everlasting covenant, signed in Jesus' blood, the Great Shepherd of the sheep. I am made holy by the Spirit, because I've been cleansed by the lifeblood of Jesus Christ. I am paid for with the precious blood of Jesus, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God. I have fellowship with You, my Father, because the blood of Jesus cleanses me from all sin. Amen."

Praise God for His Presence

Begin to praise God for His presence in your life. "With Jesus' help, let us continually offer our sacrifice of praise to God by proclaiming the glory of His name."15 If the works of the flesh [bitterness, unforgiveness, resentment, retaliation, fear, anger, hatred, violence, lust, and etc.] are quenching the Spirit in you, continue to praise your way through the blood verses, until your soul is freed to experience the mighty wind of the Holy Spirit. It is time to press in with fervency and faith.

When I first came to the revelation of the blood of Christ, it took me twenty or more minutes to break the darkness from my soul. I was born-again, but I wasn't aware of the revelation of the blood of Jesus. I needed to take authority over the enemy of my soul by overcoming him through the blood of the Lamb and by applying the word of my testimony. As I confessed Jesus' blood and yielded my life to God, the Holy Spirit began to flow freely through my soul. The truth concerning the blood of Jesus set me free to experience God's love, peace, and joy.16 As the Psalmist proclaimed: "In God's presence is fullness of joy, at His right hand are pleasures forevermore."17

The more time I spent meditating the blood of Jesus, the less time I needed to enter in into His presence. Before long, I experienced the presence of the Lord by just mentioning the blood of Jesus. As a result, the Lord used me to help others enter into God's presence. The Lord can use you to help others enter into God's presence through the blood of Jesus. Will you strive for God's presence, so you can be effective in ministering to others?

A Prayer For You ...

"When I think of the wisdom and scope of God's plan, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. I pray that from His glorious, unlimited resources, He will give you mighty inner strength through His Holy Spirit. And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in Him. May your roots go down deep into the soil of God's marvelous love. And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His love really is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it. Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

Now, glory be to God! By His mighty power at work within us, He is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope. May He be given glory in the church and in Christ Jesus forever and ever. Amen."18

Scripture References:

1 Ex. 10:19
2 Jere. 33:3
3 Rev. 12:11
4 1 Cor. 3:16, 17
5 1 Cor. 6:19, 20
6 Rev. 1:5, 6
7 Luke 24:49
8 Acts 2:2-4
9 Acts 10:34
10 Rom. 4:7, 8
11 2 Tim. 1:7
12 1 Cor. 2:8
13 1 Cor. 1:30
14 1 Cor. 1:17-28
15 Heb. 13:15
16 John 8:32
17 Psa. 16:11
18 Eph. 3:14-21

Acknowledgement: A special thanks to Sherry for transcribing this months view!

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March 2010

What a blessing it is to share another monthly view, affirming God's love for you. An affirmed person knows the love of Jesus and expresses God's abounding love even in an emotional way with something as simple as a hug or a kiss. The apostle Paul commanded the church at Rome, Corinth, and Thessalonica to "Greet all the brethren with a holy kiss."1

The Unaffirmed Person

An unaffirmed person has never felt genuine care and concern from a mature adult. Can you find yourself in this partial list of characteristics of an unaffirmed person?

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May 2010

It is always exciting to hear that you look forward to each month's view. I pray that God may always be glorified, and not myself, because of what He has done in my life. Jesus made it quite clear that "...apart from Him, we can do nothing."1

Sharing God's Grace

As a follower of Jesus, my purpose is to share God's grace, which is His favor and ability working through me to do what I can't. The apostle Paul provides an example: "...whatever I am now, it is all because God poured out His special favor on me--and not without results. For I worked harder than all the other apostles, yet it was not I, but God who was working through me by His grace."2

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July 2010

It is such an honor to have you return to the site once again. I will be reporting on the death of a dear Christian brother who went home to be with Jesus. In light of his passing, I will share the importance of believing in Jesus for eternal life. As Jesus prayed, "...this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent."1

Norman Ezell's Passing...

normanEzell-2010bOn May 8, 2010, Norman Ezell stepped into the arms of his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. "For we know that when this earthly tent we live in is taken down--when we die and leave these bodies--we will have a home in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God Himself and not by human hands...For we will not be spirits without bodies, but we will put on new heavenly bodies...Yes, we are fully confident, and we would rather be away from these bodies, for then we will be at home with the Lord."2

I met Norman in 1966, where he and four other men played in a rock band known as the "Five Americans." They were riding the wave of Beatle mania, with their forty hits like "I See The Light" and "Western Union." Then, in 1977, a couple of years after we were both saved, we met again when he visited the prison chapel with Teen Challenge as a music minister. It wasn't long until we were best friends. In 1979, he was my best man.

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February 2011

It is always exciting to be used by the Lord to bring forth another monthly view. I pray that our heavenly Father will give us deep insight into true justice. Justice is "...the ability to conform to the will and standard of God -- a practical righteousness that matches one's positional righteousness in Christ," quoted from the John MacArthur Study Bible notes.1

The Foundation of Justice

Our foundation in life determines if we will stand or fall, whether built wisely upon rock or foolishly upon sand, as taught by Jesus.2 The founding fathers of the United States understood the importance of establishing the foundation of this great country upon the wisdom of God's Word, that says:

"Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; Mercy and truth go before Your face. Blessed are the people who know the joyful sound! They walk, O LORD, in the light of Your countenance."3

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April 2011

This month's view may offer a radical view of justice for some, but be assured, it is the only way to heal our broken justice system. I pray that God will open your ears to hear what He is saying through many of His servants. That if we will humble ourselves, pray, and turn to God, He will forgive, and heal our land.

Crime and Justice

The purpose of the criminal-justice system is to punish the guilty, whereas restorative justice promotes respect and restoration for victims, offenders, and their communities. The Scriptures declare:

"The authorities are established to punish those who do wrong. So you must obey the government for two reasons: to keep from being punished and to keep a clear conscience."2

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June 2011

It's wonderful to have you as a visitor to this site. If you could visit me in person, you'd see that my desire is to have you feel loved by knowing and believing that God loves you. "He showed how much He loved you by sending His only Son into the world so that you might have eternal life through Him."1

Spiritual Restoration

Many people try to gain God's approval through good works. My parents strove for perfection through religious performance and legalism. Religion can't change the heart. It is man's attempt to know and please God apart from the finished work of Jesus.

But with my conviction, they found their religious works were not enough to sustain their lives due to all the pain I had caused. As a result, they turned their wills and lives over to the care of God by trusting in the work of Jesus: His death, burial, and resurrection. At last, they experienced a glorious relationship with God their Father.

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August 2011

Welcome to another monthly view reminding you that God loves you! "God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. And since we have been made right in God's sight by the blood of Christ, He will certainly save us from God's judgment."1

A New Direction

Once in awhile, I receive a letter that I must share with you so you can rejoice together with me. This young lady just lost her grandmother to cancer, and writes:

"I'm new to God. I picked up a Life Application Study Bible and I am searching around for a church. No one in my family goes to church, so I'm doing this on my own. There's only one lady at work that goes to church and none of my friends do either. But still, I'm doing it on my own. I'm easy with meeting new people.

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October 2011

Welcome to a new monthly view. God promises to guide us on the right pathway of life if we put our trust in Him rather than try to do it ourselves. Turning your will and your life over to God will be humbling, but it is the only way to lead a life pleasing to Him. .

God's Perfect Peace

During the past 36 years, it has been my joy to spend thousands of hours renewing my mind with God's Word. One of my favorite Scriptures is Isaiah 26:3, which states:

"You [God] will keep in perfect peace all who trust in You, whose thoughts are fixed on you!"

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December 2011

One of our purposes at the Abounding Love website is to encourage you to worship God, especially during the month of December, as we celebrate the birth of Jesus. After His birth in the manger, the physician Luke records:

"And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude
of the heavenly host praising God and saying, 'Glory
to God in the highest and on earth peace, goodwill
toward men.'"1

Are you at peace with God because of His love and goodwill toward you in Christ? If not, you can be at peace now.

God's goodwill...

For the first 29 years of my life, I didn't understand that God sent His Son, Jesus, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God. 2 This is the Good News, which I'm called to share with you.

"For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ.
It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes -- Jews first and also Gentiles. This Good News tells us how God makes us right in His sight. This is accomplished from start to finish by faith. As the Scriptures say, 'It is through faith that a righteous person has life.'"3

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February 2010

It is such a joy to know that you are reading the monthly view. It is my prayer that while viewing this site, you will be affirmed in God's abounding love. A dear saint, Anna Terruwe, M.D., says: "God's love in Christ Jesus is the ultimate affirming love that heals human wounds and patiently awaits our graced response." May the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all, just as we do to you.1

Affirmation of God

Webster's dictionary defines affirm as "to validate, confirm, state positively, assert as valid or confirmed," and affirmation as "the act of affirming, something affirmed: a positive assertion."

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April 2010

It is so exciting to share God's abounding love through the monthly view. I'm so thankful for your response. If you would like it placed on the website, make the subject: What People Are Saying. It is my prayer that what you say will be a blessing to others around the world.

Study Chart Booklet

Update: August 2014 - This booklet is no longer available in black and white. We are working on a new download in color. When this is ready, we'll add a link to it. Thank you!

Praise Report

"My name is Jeremiah, and I'm a graduate student at Bob Jones University in Greenville, S.C. I'm getting my Masters in Performance Studies, and I'm in the processing of preparing for my graduate recital speech. I just wanted to contact you and let you know that your story greatly impacted my life so much so that I'm going to share it as part of my recital speech.

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June 2010

Welcome to this month's view. I'm glad to hear that you enjoy not only the views, but the entire web site. As you read, I pray that God's love will be revealed to you by the Holy Spirit.1 Remember, "We love God because He first loved us."2 We are beloved by God!

KLove.com

Do you find it hard to stay focused on your relationship with the Lord throughout the day? If so, one way to focus is by listening to contemporary Christian music on KLove. com. As you do, God's word of love and grace will renew your mind to the finished work of Jesus, producing a sense of righteousness and perfect peace.3

"Therefore by Him [Jesus] let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name."4

Serenity Prayer

My mother's favorite prayer was the Serenity Prayer. Often, she would pray it out loud to overcome as things got too tough for her to handle. I recall her cry:

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August 2010

It is wonderful when you visit our site for a word of encouragement. It is important for us to remember that in these troublesome times, "The Lord is our strength and song, and has become our salvation...This is the day the LORD has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it...Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever."1

Rejoice in the Lord...

It could be that you find very little to rejoice about these days. Maybe you have not experienced your deliverance the way the above verses depict; but rejoice anyway, because the provision for your salvation was given 2000 years ago through the finished work of Jesus Christ. He died and rose again for your salvation, freedom, and rejoicing.

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