“In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.”

Psalm 4:8

“I thank you, my Heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ, Your dear Son, that You have kept me this night from all harm and danger; and I pray that You would keep me this day also from sin and every evil, that all my doings and life may please You. For into Your hands I commend myself, my body and soul, and all things. Let Your holy angel be with me, that the evil foe may have no power over me. Amen.”       ~ Luther’s Morning prayer


Anything Good?

Photo by Laura Jostes

Photo by Laura Jostes

“Many are asking, “Who can show us anything good?”

Let the light of your face shine upon us, O Lord.

You have filled my heart with greater joy

than when their grain

and new wine abound.

I will lie down and sleep in peace,

for you alone, O Lord,

make me dwell in safety.”

Psalm 4:6-8

* * * * *

Photo by Laura Jostes

Photo by Laura Jostes

Lord God, You are good.  When we look for something “good” in this world it dims in light of Your grace and mercy.  You have given us peace in our hearts by turning Your face towards us–we have seen You face to face through Your Son Jesus Christ our Lord who obediently became the sacrifice for our sins.  There are no greater riches than the freedom from sin and guilt found in Your forgiveness.  Help us to live this day in joyful response to all of Your good gifts to us. For Jesus’ sake, Amen.

May 2 Hey Soul!


Photo by Laura Jostes

Judges 15:1-16:31;  John 2:1-25;  Psalm 103:1-22;  Proverbs 14:17-19

Hey Soul–

have you thought about the Lord today–

while we were running errands?

Did you thank Him for safe travels and

kindly clerks?

While you got your blood drawn,

did you thank Him for convenient

health care and the

gentle touch of the technician?


Photo by Laura Jostes

Hey Soul–

did you think of the Lord as you

walked through the city park

and thank Him for the city fathers

who provide green space

to refresh and see

God’s Handiwork?


Photo by Laura Jostes

Hey Soul–

did you send some thanks

up to the Lord for

family that surrounds you each day,

for forgiveness that smooths

the rough places

and keeps peace?

Well, if you haven’t done theses things

my Soul,

you still have time yet this Friday so

Praise the Lord!


“Praise the Lord O my Soul; all my inmost being, praise His Holy name!  Praise the Lord O my Soul, and forget not all his benefits–who forgives ALL your sins, and heals ALL your diseases; who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with GOOD things so that your YOUTH is renewed like the eagles.”  Psalm 103:1-5


O give thanks unto the Lord,

for He is good

and His mercy endures



Photo by Laura Jostes




January 14 Heads Up


Photo by Amanda Petty


Genesis 30:1-31:16;  Matthew 10:1-25;  Psalm 12:1-8;  Proverbs 3:13-15

“Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.  Beware of men, for they will deliver you over to courts and flog you…drag you before governors and kings, to bear witness before them and the Gentiles…Do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say, for what you are to say will be given you in that hour.  For it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.”  Matthew 10:16-20

Up to this point in Jesus’ ministry his twelve disciples had only witnessed the joyous results of Christ’s mission:  the sick were healed, the demon possessed were freed, sins were forgiven and lives were changed.

Yet, Jesus knew what lay before them so he gave them a “heads up.”  Just as he would be arrested, flogged, and dragged before kings–so would they.

Jesus likewise gives us a similar heads up.  “In the world you will have tribulation, but take heart, I have overcome the world.”  John 16:33

Whatever difficulties, challenges or issues you face simply because you are a believer in Jesus, don’t be surprised or dismayed.

Jesus’ grace and mercy will see you through.  His victory over sin, death and the devil is our victory through faith!

Thank you, Lord, for the heads up–and for keeping our heads and hearts looking up to you.  Give us courage and strength to continue proclaiming your name and your salvation to those around us.  In your name we pray, Amen.

Oh, Lord, you will keep us safe and protect us from such people forever.”  Psalm 12:7


December 13 Trapped or Free?


Photo by Charise Orozco

Obadiah 1:1-21;  Revelation 4:1-11;  Psalm 132:1-18;  Proverbs 29:24-25

“The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is safe.”  Proverbs 29:25


Being more concerned about approval ratings from peers rather than God’s approval can get us into all kinds of trouble.

It can be very subtle…just like catching a wild animal with a snare is oh, so subtle.  What would knowingly walk right into something designed to bind and hold it captive, right?

I’ve walked into my share of snares in my lifetime.  I imagine you have too. I’ve said “yes” to what I should have said “no” to.  Sometimes it’s hard to say no, because we want so much to please and be accepted and fit in–whether we are a teen, or young adult, or middle age empty- nester or octogenarian.

Is there a way out of the snares we’ve become entangled in? 

You bet!

1.  Admit that you’ve been caught in the trap (and there are many kinds and varieties designed by the world, our sinful flesh and Satan to trap us).

2. Confess your sin to God our Father.

3. Receive the forgiveness that was won for us on the Cross by Christ.

4. Keep your eyes on Jesus, the “author and perfecter of our faith.”  Let His word dwell in you richly

5. “Trust in Him with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.”  Proverbs 3:5-6

Father in Heaven, thank you for saving us from the sin that entraps us–for setting us free.  May we keep our eyes on you.  Give us wisdom to see temptation for what it is–an opportunity to become stuck–and to turn away from it.  Help us not to fear what others may think of us–what the world judges us to be.  Help us to be faithful to you and loving to those who want to see us fall.  Thank you for being our refuge–our safe house.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

“It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in man.”  Psalm 118:8


July 30 Avenger

Image2 Chronicles 26:1-28:27;  Romans 13:1-14;  Psalm 23:1-6;  Proverbs 20:11

Iron Man?

Captain America?



Haven’t met any of them.  But I personally know an avenger–Ben.

Ben wears the uniform and the badge and keeps his community safe.  He rounds up wrongdoers and writes speeding tickets.  He’s a solid young man with a good heart and a zeal for justice.  I’m glad God led him into law enforcement as a career.  I’m sure a lot of others are too!

What a blessing God’s avengers are to our communities.  Let’s pray for them–they have a tough job to do.  Pray for their protection even as they protect;  for fair administration of their duties;  for courage and steadfastness under pressure.

“For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad.

Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority?

Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval

for he is God’s servant for your good.

But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear

the sword in vain.

For he is a servant of God, an avenger

who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer.”

Romans 13:3-4

Lord God Heavenly Father, thank you for civil governments and the public servants that keep the peace.  We pray for all who serve in one of the many roles of “avenger.”  Help them to do their jobs well and in a manner that pleases you.  Grant to each one of us a deeper appreciation of their sacrifices and a desire to give them the respect and honor due to them.  We ask this in Jesus’ name, Amen.

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death  I will fear no evil,

for you are with me;

your rod and your staff they comfort me.”   Psalm 23:4


July 2 Safe Tower


2 Kings 20:1-22:2;  Acts 21:17-36;  Psalm 150:1-6;  Proverbs 18:9-10

“The name of the Lord is a strong tower;

the righteous man runs into it and is safe.”  Proverbs 18:10


The name of the Lord

      hung above his head

               as he hung upon the tree.

The cross still stands as my

strong tower.

I look to it and know

         my sins have been forgiven.

The righteous, 

He considers me

and to Him He bids me run.

‘Come to me you weary one,

       Come to me you frightened one,

               Come to me you worried one,

I will keep you close to me;

                                       I will keep you safe.’

Lord God, thank you for being our strong tower, a tower that never decays, one that will never be destroyed.  Thank you for preserving us and keeping us safe this day.  May we use the time you give us on this earth to serve you–to love others and speak your truth.  May we never be afraid to speak the name–Jesus–to proclaim that He is the one who saves.  He is the one we run to.  He is the one who keeps us safe.  In His name we pray, Amen.

“Praise the Lord!

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord!

Praise the Lord!”  Psalm 150:1,6


“The name of the Lord is a strong tower;

the righteous man runs into it and is safe.”