Life

Suicide has been in the news the last couple of days in our community due to the death of officer Skuza of the Fargo Police Department.  The Lighthouse family will be praying for the Skuza family.

Suicide has become far too common in our day.  I have found that for people seeking recovery, the majority have attempted or considered taking their own life as they’ve walked through the darkness.  I want you to know that life is precious and that it is worth living.  God is a God of life and He longs to bring healing and hope into our lives.  If you are in such a place in life I ask you to reach out to someone and ask for help.  There is a God who created you and who loves you so very much.  There are also people who follow Jesus who love you and who will walk through the darkness with you.  The Lighthouse is just one church of many who wish to help.

I personally know what it is like to feel empty and to walk in a dark place.  It can be very lonely.  Very painful.  I also personally know that God is a God of hope and restoration.  He can and will make a difference in your life if you give Him a chance.  Your pain does not justify causing a deeper pain in the life of others.  Instead, by seeking help, you can turn your hopelessness into joy. 

“You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing.
You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy.”  Psalm 30:11 NLT

You are precious.  A masterpiece created by God.  Don’t let anyone tell you different.  Don’t tell yourself anything different.  You are loved!

See you at the Lighthouse,

Dale

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Shorts

You’ve heard the old joke, you know you’re from North Dakota if….you’ve worn a parka and shorts at the same time:)  I remember a picture in the Fargo Forum some time ago of a man blowing snow wearing shorts and a t-shirt.  It wasn’t me, but I’ve shoveled in shorts and a t-shirt.

Well, for those that know me this won’t surprise you, yes, I broke out the shorts today!  Yay!!! I had shorts on in the house yesterday, which I do much of the winter.  But today – OUTSIDE!!!  And it was awesome.  Beautiful.  39 when I left this morning, 49 (so says my car) when I returned home.  Yep, that’s shorts weather!

For those who don’t know, it has been a very long winter.  I know we have a tendency to forget the past, but this is the coldest winter I remember.  It got cold very early, and has lasted until this week with very few days of reprieve.  I’m talking bone chilling cold, below zero with a steady wind blowing most of the time cold; and this is from someone who likes it cool.  Come on, you can agree, it’s been a long winter.

It’s been a long winter in other ways too.  Those who suffer from depression have had it especially hard.  The days are short and the nights long.  We don’t see the sun a lot.  You often hate to go outside because of the cold, so we tend to isolate ourselves.  I know that many of you reading this know exactly what I’m talking about.  In fact many of you have told me so, it has been a long winter of the soul.

The thing about winter in Fargo is you begin to think that everything is dead and that spring and new life will never return again.  We have winters outside, and we have winters of our soul.  Yet on days like today let us be reminded that even though the earth is covered by snow and ice, God continues to work and to prepare for spring underneath.  The trees will bud again, the flowers bloom and the grass turn green.  Even as we go through the winters of the soul and we feel that God is absent and that everything inside is dead, God continues to work in us to prepare for springtime.  Today, I’m reminded that though we doubt it, spring does come.  The SON will shine, smiles will return and spirits will be renewed.  You can bank on it.  “Sorrow may last for a night, but joy comes in the morning!”

Now yes, I know we’ll have more cold this month and probably more snow, but today the shorts have appeared and there is hope.  In Fargo there are smiles on people’s faces again!  Talk of weather continues, but it is positive…a very nice change.  And best of all, perhaps those of us who suffer from depression and the struggles of life can see that yes, there is hope!  Spring will come again.  There is hope of new life!  God is present after all.  Why did I doubt? 

Soooo, you with me?  Get out the shorts and run around outside for a few minutes.  It will make your day and lift your spirits!  God is a God of the seasons of life, and indeed, He is good.  Alright…here I go!  Neighbors, get ready to see some white legs!!!!

See you at the Lighthouse,

Dale

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