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Daily Encouragement - October 22

The earth is the Lord’s and all that is in it, the world, and those who dwell in it.

         Psalm 24:1

I lift up my eyes to the hills – from where will my help come?

My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.

He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber. 

He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time on and forevermore.

    Psalm 121:1,2,8

Jesus said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat. Or about your body, what you will wear. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. of how much more value are you than the birds?                              Luke 12:22-24

I am a worrier. I come by it naturally from my father’s side of the family. These most recent weeks and months have given me new causes to worry: will this pandemic ever come to an end? Will my inbox ever stop overflowing with political requests for donations? I worry about what will happen if one candidate wins, and then I worry about what will happen if the other one wins. I worry that there is a Hurricane Epsilon out in the Atlantic. I worry because I need a haircut. I worry about my cousin who is not well. I just worry. I am good at it, and I too often find it hard to let go of my worrying and trust in God. From time to time I feel like the Almighty might need suggestions from me as to how he could fix things…or at least make them better. 

Rick and I are once again in the beautiful and ancient mountains of western North Carolina. Yesterday we went to Mount Mitchell, the tallest peak east of the Mississippi River. (6,684 feet). This mountain, these Appalachian peaks were formed 200 to 400 million years ago. From its summit, it is possible to view row upon row of mountains stretching out in every direction. It is a place of awesome and unfathomable beauty. 

And as I stood there among the mostly silent crowd of people atop that ancient peak and pondered how God had created it there, and how it had stood there, doing what it was created to do for years beyond my imagination, it occurred to me that maybe I could take a lesson from Mt. Mitchell. Once these hills were taller than the newer Rocky Mountains. Time and erosion have taken their toll, but the mountain remains, steady, unselfishly opening its spaces and its resources to all who come. God created this mountain. And God takes care of this mountain.

God created us too. And God takes care of us. Sometimes we may be worn down with the ways of the world, but still God watches over us. God neither slumbers nor sleeps. God created the whole earth and all that dwell therein. And though we may worry and fret, God has this. God can handle whatever troubles this world can bring. I drew a deep breath of fir-scented air. If God loves even this worn-down old hill enough to preserve it for 300 million years, how much more does God love us! Sometimes it takes an old mountain to put me in my place. 

I Sing Th’Almighty Power of God

I sing th’almighty power of God, that made the mountains rise,

That spread the flowing seas abroad, and build the lofty skies.

I sing the wisdom that ordained the sun to rule the day;

The moon shines full at his command, and all the stars obey.

God, our helper, you are strength greater than the mountains; you look to our needs and watch over us day and night. Teach us to hold confidently to your grace that in times of fear and danger we may know you are near and depend on you, our sure deliverer. Amen  (from Book of Common Worship, Daily Prayer)

Pastor Rachel Moser

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