Memorial Day. Thank you.

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At the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, that long wall of black marble engraved with the names of those killed in the war, people come to remember their friends and loved ones. People often leave tokens of their remembrance: flags, sealed letters, pieces of clothing, photos. Volunteers collect these tokens daily and store them at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Collection.

A book entitled, Offerings at the Wall, pictures many of these mementos. One man left dog tags, a headband, and a letter that reads, “To all of you here from Echo Company, 1st Marine Division…I leave you my headband which contains my sweat from the war, my dog tag, and a picture of me and Mike. Another time, another place. I’ll never forget you.”

A woman left a braid of hair and a picture of a house with an American flag hanging on the porch. Her note read, “Wayne, I think of you every day and miss you so much. I love you.” Written on one flag was the message, “May all of you who died, all of you still missing, and all of you who returned home never be forgotten.” This weekend may we never forget their courageous sacrifices for the freedoms we enjoy today in our great country.

Because of those who gave their lives while serving our country, we enjoy freedom as Americans. May we never take it for granted. If you ever get a chance, please visit Arlington National Cemetery. I promise you, it will give you a greater appreciation to being an American.

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Of course, at the top of my list of courageous individuals is our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Jesus willingly surrendered Himself as the sinless Son of God and became sin for us (2 Cor. 5:21) even though He was innocent and did no wrong. Because of Jesus’ ultimate sacrifice and defeat over death, hell, and the grave, you and I don’t have to be alone and separated from God by our sin with no hope. By faith in Jesus, we can be eternally set free from the bondage of sin by the blood of Jesus.

Thank you to those who displayed a Christlike love when you laid down you life for your country, and thank you Jesus for laying down your life so mankind might enjoy eternity in heaven where there will be no war, no death, no disease, no sorrow…Thank you.

-Mark Kannarney

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I Need Thee…National Day Prayer

“I Need Thee Every Hour” for National Day of Prayer. We all want control as individuals and as a nation. Sometimes we feel as though we are self sufficient and we don’t need the Lord. Whether we realize it or not, we not only need the Lord every hour, we can’t even walk without Him.

I know many who are reading this are tired and hurting. I just want you to know I’m thinking of you right now and more importantly, I’m praying for you. God is faithful and He is able. Let’s all pray for each other and our nation that we each would realize our need to “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6).
Love in Christ,
Pastor Mark

See no one but Jesus!

This morning during my devotion time I was reminded of the transfiguration of Jesus after He led Peter, James, and John up to a high mountain in Matthew 17. It was there that Jesus was transfigured and the three disciples saw the glory of God as Jesus face shined like the sun and his clothes were as white the light. It was during this that Moses and Elijah also appeared with Jesus talking to him as the three disciples witnessed this powerful and magnificent display of the glory of God.

Can you imagine what it must have been like to have been there with the disciples at the transfiguration? Peter responded to what he was witnessing by suggesting that three tabernacles be made so that they could worship Jesus, Moses, and Elijah. It’s easy to be critical of Peter but Mark’s gospel explained that it was fear that led Peter to suggest worshipping all 3 (Mark 9:6). While Peter was speaking a bright cloud covered them and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him” (Matthew 17:5). When Peter, James, and John heard this they fell to the ground in fear and reverence which led Jesus to tell them to get up and to not be afraid.

What really spoke to me this morning was the fact that after Jesus told his three disciples to get up, they only saw Jesus. I can’t tell you LFBC how I’m praying for that every week for our church that we’ll only see Jesus! I know that Pastor’s, church staff, teachers, and leaders want to do great things for the Lord, but if man becomes the focus then we’re missing it! I ask you to join me in praying that Jesus would be what we see here at LFBC because He alone is worthy. We need Jesus, and Jesus is enough! Pray with me that we’ll encounter the living God through His power. I believe that when Jesus is all we see it will impact us and change us by the power of God for His glory and our good. We’ll never be the same again!

Love in Christ,

Pastor Mark

“And when they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no man, save Jesus only” (Matthew 17:8)