Good afternoon and Blessings on this Palm Sunday...
As we enter now yet another week of a sequestered life style, deprived of the normalcies we have all our life had the privilege to participate in and taken for granted... I want to encourage and remind you how incredibly grateful I am for each of you. I could never have imagined I would be dealing with such things in my business life, nor could I have imagined it even possible to believe all the earth would be on “pause”. No planning or strategy could have prepared us for this day but yet in the midst of these turbulent waters I have complete calm we shall overcome this and be stronger for it. I also would not have wanted to go through nor could I have gone through this without each of you... you truly are the best of the best in so many ways beyond your talent and effort... you are unique and wonderfully made in His image.
I pray today you will take time to reflect on all the good that is coming from this, take a moment to give the Lord thanks for His presence especially during difficult times. This week we found out Dianne is CANCER FREE... oh my dear God what a wonderful praise report He gave us right in the craziness of these days. I know each of you can see hope and promise in your own lives as well... reflect on it and give Him thanks.
As you take time today to just rest in His presence know that tomorrow you will be needed to fight another day... I thought you might like this devotion which reminds us our Lord understands trials and suffering as He has suffered in all ways. He will see us through this that I am sure but the pain of it will still be felt but we can and will endure it...
"On him they laid the cross, that he might bear it after Jesus."
We see in Simon's carrying the cross a picture of the work of the Church throughout all generations; she is the cross-bearer after Jesus. Mark then, Christian, Jesus does not suffer so as to exclude your suffering. He bears a cross, not that you may escape it, but that you may endure it. Christ exempts you from sin, but not from sorrow. Remember that, and expect to suffer.
But let us comfort ourselves with this thought, that in our case, as in Simon's, it is not our cross, but Christ's cross which we carry. When you are molested for your piety; when your religion brings the trial of cruel mockings upon you, then remember it is not your cross, it is Christ's cross; and how delightful is it to carry the cross of our Lord Jesus!
You carry the cross after him. You have blessed company; your path is marked with the footprints of your Lord. The mark of his blood-red shoulder is upon that heavy burden. 'Tis his cross, and he goes before you as a shepherd goes before his sheep. Take up your cross daily, and follow him.
Do not forget, also, that you bear this cross in partnership. It is the opinion of some that Simon only carried one end of the cross, and not the whole of it. That is very possible; Christ may have carried the heavier part, against the transverse beam, and Simon may have borne the lighter end. Certainly it is so with you; you do but carry the light end of the cross, Christ bore the heavier end.
And remember, though Simon had to bear the cross for a very little while, it gave him lasting honor. Even so the cross we carry is only for a little while at most, and then we shall receive the crown, the glory. Surely we should love the cross, and, instead of shrinking from it, count it very dear, when it works out for us "a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory."
In His Grace
President/CEO Manna Development Group
1 Peter 4:8-11
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