Category Archives: Pastors Corner

Inspirational faith based articles from local Pastors in the Eastvale area.

Pastor’s Corner: Easter is…

By Dennis Morales

I am the resurrection and the life…”  John 11:25

          When I think of Easter, I have cool memories of visiting family, going to church in brand new clothes, having conversations over big meals, eating chocolate like there’s no tomorrow, getting chocolate on those brand new clothes, and don’t forget the peeps!   Easter carries with it so many family traditions.  Easter for some can be bittersweet as we have fond memories of loved ones missed.  But we must not forget what Easter actually is.  It is about death and resurrection of life. 

Death is something that grips the world with fear.  Jesus often confronted death in His earthly ministry.  This was an occasion where one of Jesus’ good friends had passed away.  It was at the grave of Lazarus that Jesus wept.  He wept because He knew that death wasn’t part of God’s original plan.  God’s intention wasn’t for mankind to experience suffering and death.  Jesus wept because of the effect of sin over the world and because He saw the pain it caused in His friends Mary and Martha.  Martha told Jesus that if He had been there earlier, they wouldn’t be mourning.  Jesus’ response still resonates throughout time.  He said “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live” (John 11:25).  It’s interesting that in scripture we find that Jesus broke up every funeral He ever attended. Death could not exist where He was. When the dead heard His voice they sprang to life.   This Easter remember what Easter really is.  Jesus met death Himself, but the grave could not hold Him.  He rose.  If you put your faith in Jesus, the Bible says that you will live forever in the presence of God.  Jesus defeated death once for all (Hebrews 10:10).  Jesus is our living hope (1Peter 1:3).   

Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets Sundays 8:30 and 10:30am / Wednesdays 7pm @ Clara Barton Elementary (calvaryeastvale.org). 

Pastor’s Corner: 10 Confessions of a Christian- Confession #1: I’m a Liar

By Chris Kirish

I confess… I’m a liar.

Perhaps you can relate? Someone approaches and asks me how I’m doing.

Conjuring every ounce of strength I have left I force a smile.

“I’m good! How are you?”

Why did I just lie? Is it because I think it’s what they want to hear? Is it because it’s what American culture has trained me to do? Is it because I don’t really want to think about it? Is it because I don’t even know? Is it because I don’t know them? Is it because I don’t want to go that deep right now? Or is it because hidden somewhere deep down inside of me I’m afraid they won’t care if I told them the truth, and that would be worse than if they never asked me in the first place.

Whatever reason we have let’s be honest – we all lie. We lie about how we’re doing. We lie about who we are. We put on a face. We play the part. We act it out. We behave the way we think people want us to behave. We bury the feelings.

Now we have a million reasons why  we do this. It could be our up bringing, our lack of trust, or it could simply be because John Wayne said it’s “What a man’s got to do.”

Why is John Wayne so awesome?

But whatever the case is, we continue to suppress what we’re going through and we hide our struggles and sins from others. But, that does not erase the ever nagging question in the back of our minds… is this is the way it was supposed to be? Is this how life is supposed to be? Am I hardwired in my DNA to deal with everything on my own? Is this the way God wanted it to be? Does God want me to carry this weight alone?

I mean sure, not everyone needs to know your deepest darkest secrets and not everyone needs to know you’re not having a good day. But maybe someone should know. Maybe suppressing the pain, hiding our struggles, and lying is not what God wanted for us.

I find it to be fascinating that Jesus had a tremendous amount of compassion and grace for every sinner He came into contact with and yet He was extremely hard on the people who acted like they had it all together. We don’t have to guess as to why He felt this way – Jesus made it clear for us:

Matthew 25:27 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombswhich look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. 28 In the same way, on the outside you appearto people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.

I’m no theologian but it seems to me that Jesus really didn’t like it when people faked it. And although we like to picture Jesus as a blond haired hippy surfer, carrying a lamb on his shoulders, smiling all the time, and saying “God bless you” – it may not be too far of a stretch to say Jesus was pretty angry at these religious leaders and He may not have been smiling or carrying a lamb at this moment.

And if you think about it God has never liked it when we hide. In fact, this problem of hiding goes all the way back to the Garden of Eden. Genesis 3 tells us that when God came walking in the Garden after Adam and Eve sinned and ate from the tree God commanded them not to eat – they hid from God. This made God angry. And they weren’t the only ones. Jonah once tried hiding from God too. He got on a boat that was headed in the opposite direction from where God was calling him. Jonah though he could run and hide from God. I remember that not going very well for him.

Something about a big fish?

In the same way, many of us are still trying to hide from God today. We hide behind a smile. Behind a title. Behind a façade. A part we play for the people we think will judge us if they really knew us. Can I encourage you today? Drop the mask. You may be fooling people but you’ll never fool God. And God doesn’t want you to be perfect but he does demand that you’re honest. God can help a sinner but He can’t help someone who pretends like they’re not a sinner. God can do anything and He can save anyone but one thing God won’t do – He won’t save someone who won’t admit they need a Savior. Drop the mask. Tell God the truth and then go tell someone else the truth.

Pastor Chris Kirish is the Pastor of Ministries at VantagePoint Church. Contact at http://www.vantagepointchurch.org o: 909-465-9700 ex.711.

Pastor’s Corner: Sharing With Others

By Mark Hopper

Several years ago after my wife finished an extensive series of treatments for breast cancer, some friends invited us to use their house while they were away to give her an opportunity to rest and recover from this exhausting journey. Their home was on the water in Newport Beach, California. When we walked up to the house, we were amazed at how beautiful and peaceful it was. It was not on the beach with all the tourists and bicycles but on Newport Shores where it was quiet and restful.

She began to regain her strength as we went for short walks along the water. As the days went by, she felt more ambitious and determined to walk further. By the end of our stay she was walking all the way from the house to the pier and back. It felt like we were on an extended vacation even though we were only thirty miles from home.

On several occasions over the years other friends have shared their cabins in the mountains east of Los Angeles. My wife was a school teacher and after the end of a busy school year, we often went to the mountains to get out of the foggy June Gloom and enjoy the blue skies and warm sunshine. Our wedding anniversary was also in June so this provided a perfect setting to rest and celebrate together. When our children were younger, a friend loaned us his motorhome for our family vacation.

We are so thankful for the people who have shared so much with us. There is a verse in the Bible that says, “Instruct those who are rich in this present world to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and willing to share” (First Timothy 6:17-18).

You may not think of yourself as rich but I am confident that you do have things that you can share with others. You may have a mountain cabin, a beach house or a motorhome. You may have an extra car or some tools that you can lend. You may have experience, knowledge or skills that you can share with others. Let me encourage you to watch for an opportunity to share some things you have with neighbors, friends or people in need. You will be glad you did and they will too!

Pastor’s Corner: Navigation

By Mark Hopper

I grew up during the Space Race of the 1960’s as America and Russia worked furiously to be the first to land a man on the moon. It was an amazing time in our nation’s history. Apollo 8 was the first time men orbited the moon and Apollo 11 was the first landing of men on the moon in 1969. America won the Space Race.

It is hard to believe that was fifty years ago. In 2019 I enjoyed reading several books and watching TV documentaries and movies about both of those remarkable moments. One of the things that caught my attention was how essential reliable navigation was to the success of those missions. I learned that the American astronauts were required to memorize the locations of a number of stars and constellations. Even though they had computers and sophisticated navigational equipment the astronauts knew they could rely on the locations of constellations and stars to chart their course to and from the moon.

I have read that Polynesians used the stars to navigate their way across the vast Pacific Ocean. They rested in the day and paddled and sailed by night aiming toward certain stars and constellations. The European explorers like Henry the Navigator from Portugal and other nations used the location of the sun and the stars to identify their location and chart their courses, too. They knew the locations of the stars were predictable and reliable in ancient times and they still are today. Now we have GPS (Global Positioning Satellites) to chart the paths for ships, aircraft and our own automobiles. These provide a reliable source for navigation and travel.

The Bible says that God created the universe. He placed the sun, moon, earth and stars in their places. The planets follow predictable orbits and the location of the stars are consistent and trustworthy. The Bible says, “Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens – who created all of these? God calls each of the stars by name. Because of His great power and mighty strength not one of them is missing” (Isaiah 40:26).

Let me encourage you to reflect on the beauty and order of the stars in the sky. When you see a beautiful full moon rising up in the eastern horizon I hope it reminds you of the regularity of the seasons and the reliability of each day and month. Give thanks to God who created the world we enjoy. You will be glad you did and He will too!

Pastor’s Corner: Meet the President

By Mark Hopper

Recently my wife and I were traveling to Texas to meet some friends in San Antonio. Our flight on Southwest airlines took us to Dallas first and then we waited at Love Field for our short flight to San Antonio. After we found our departure gate we noticed a familiar looking person in the waiting area. I had just seen his picture in the Southwest Airline magazine on our last flight. It was Gary Kelly – the president of Southwest. He was going on the same flight we were to San Antonio.

I wasn’t sure it was him until I introduced myself and my wife and asked if he really was Gary Kelly. He greeted us warmly and assured us he was the guy in the magazine and he was glad to take a picture with us. I told him we loved Southwest Airlines and we had been flying Southwest since the time it began in Dallas when I was a graduate student in Dallas in 1971. I enjoyed our brief conversation and told him how much we appreciated the way Southwest has personally helped us on several occasions. I told him we had recently flown on one of the new Southwest flights to Hawaii a few months ago.

He was very gracious and gave the credit to the airlines’ helpful employees. As we prepared to board our flight I noticed Gary and his wife were in line with all the other passengers. He did not request or expect special or preferential treatment. I suspect most of the passengers on our flight had no idea that the president of the airline was flying with us. I have enjoyed reading many of Gary’s articles in the Southwest magazine. Many times he has stressed Southwest’s philosophy of customer service. I am confident he models being a servant leader and putting the needs of others ahead of his own. There is a verse in the Bible that says, “Jesus did not come to be served but to serve others and give his life for us” (Mark 10:45). Let me encourage you to watch for opportunities to serve people around you – in your company, your community and on your school campus. They will be glad you did and you will too.

Pastor’s Corner: The “Otel”

Pastor Mark Hopper of eFree Church in Diamond Bar

By Mark Hopper

In golf they have a term called a “Mulligan” which allows a player to hit another shot. It is like a “do over” after you hit a really bad one. Can you remember a time in your life where you wish you could rewind the clock or calendar and do something over? A few years ago, my wife and I were invited to attend a wedding north of Santa Barbara. She had recently finished chemotherapy so we decided to drive half way to the wedding, spend the night at a hotel and drive the rest of the way the next day.

I looked online and found a few hotels near Ventura. One looked nice and had a view of the harbor. There was also an Embassy Suite in the area on the beach where I had attended a pastor’s conference, but it was twice the price. I reserved the harbor one.

When we arrived a few days later, we were very disappointed. The paint was pealing, the TV in the room looked like it was from the 1950’s and the view of the harbor wasn’t like the website!

After we unpacked, I suggested we drive over to show my wife the conference site at the Embassy Suite. It was gorgeous with flowing waterfalls, an impressive lobby and an ocean view. The contrast was devastating. I felt terrible. I checked to see if they still had any rooms but they were double what we saw online. Why didn’t I book the Embassy Suite when I had the chance?  Why did I trust the website and select the hotel by the harbor? I wished I could have a Mulligan. As we drove back to our hotel we noticed the sign on the building was missing the letter “H” – it read “otel”.  It was clear I had made the wrong choice.

I’m sure that all of us have done something or said something that we wish we could “do over”. Thankfully, the Bible says God is willing to forgive us for our sins and mistakes. He is gracious, compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love and kindness (Psalm 103:8 / Jonah 4:2).  He is the God of the second chance. He gives us “do overs” we don’t deserve! Thankfully my wife was gracious and forgiving, too. I hope I don’t make this mistake again and hope you don’t either.  When in doubt, go with the Embassy Suite and not the “otel”. You will be glad you did!

This article was written by Pastor Mark Hopper of Efree Church of Diamond Bar. Sunday Services are held at 9:00 am & 10:45 am at 3255 South Diamond Bar Blvd. You can contact the church at 909.594.7604 or visit them online at Efreedb.org

Pastor’s Corner: Stand in Faith

“Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong…”

1 Corinthians 16:13
Pastor Dennis Morales
Pastor Dennis Morales

By Pastor Dennis Morales

This is the final encouragement to a church from the Apostle Paul.  Paul planted the Corinthian church, but the church had issues that needed addressing.  The final comments to them is a calling to “stand fast.”  This is actually a military term meaning to “hold your position” or “to refuse to be defeated.”  There is to be no retreat. Paul is encouraging the Corinthian church to remain strong in the faith because opposition will come.  Trials will ensue.  Are you going through a time of drought?  Are you going through a time of discouragement?   Paul says, “stand firm and be brave.”  I believe we need to share this encouragement all the more today.   I am reminded how “Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank; therefore, he requested of the chief of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.”   This Scripture says God had brought Daniel into the favor and goodwill of the chief of the eunuchs (Daniel 1:8-9).  Under Babylonian rule, Daniel turned his back on the luxuries of the king’s court because eating defiled food would have been a compromise of his faith.  God honored Daniel’s stand and he earned the respect of the chief of the eunuchs, because Daniel’s courage impressed him.   Daniel stood for God and was strong.  He didn’t seek man’s approval, but God’s will.   If we allow ourselves to be dissuaded from doing anything unless we have complete approval, it almost assured we will never accomplish anything of value. Instead of being discouraged by opposition, we should take comfort in (God’s faithfulness) and keep on doing what is right. Whatever you find yourself up against today, remember that “one,” with God, is the majority.   “If God is for “you” who can stand against you (Romans 8:31).  He sees what you don’t see.  Faith is trusting and believing God.  God does the impossible (Matthew 19:26).

Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets Sundays 8:30 and 10:30am / Wednesdays 7pm @ Clara Barton Elementary (calvaryeastvale.org)

Worry Not

Pastor Dennis Morales,
Calvary Chapel Eastvale

By Pastor Dennis Morales

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus”

Philippians 4:6-7

A recently licensed pilot was flying his private plane in a cloudy day. He was not very experienced in instrument landing. When the control tower was to bring him in, he began to get panicky. Then a stern voice came over the radio, “You just obey instructions, we’ll take care of the obstructions.”  The devil likes to keep our eyes on the obstructions.  These obstructions lead to a stress filled life. 

It’s no secret.  We are a stressed-out society today.  The American Institute of Stress (yes this is real), states that 77% of people in the US regularly express physical symptoms due to stress.  We’re constantly moving, going from one thing to another, from one worry to another. Stress has a tendency to grip or paralyze a life and steal us of joy.  We rush, we stress, we get frustrated, we feel unaccomplished, we feel depressed.  All are signs of worry.  Worry can be overcome.  Jesus encouraged us to “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” (Matthew 6:33).  The first step to defeating worry is to put God first among other options.   What’s the next step?  Communicate with God.  Prayer recently has been scientifically proven to have an effect on brain activity.  Dr. Andrew Newberg of Thomas Jefferson Hospital has been studying the effect of prayer on the human brain for more than 20 years, injecting radioactive dye into subjects and watching what changes inside their heads when they pray.  These changes, says Newberg, are signs of the power of prayer to heal. Said Newberg, “We see not only changes in the activity levels, but in different neurotransmitters, the chemicals in our brain.”  Funny how God already knew this.  Scripture says that prayer will also bring God’s peace, which is the most fulfilling peace. (Philippians 4:6-7)

Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets Sundays 8:30 and 10:30am/Wednesdays 7pm @ Clara Barton Elementary 7437 Corona Valley Ave. Eastvale.  (calvaryeastvale.org). 

Roaring or Running?

Pastor Tim Eaton,
Edgewater Lutheran Church

By Pastor Tim Eaton

There is an old adage about the instinct to fight or flight.  It suggests that when something challenging comes into our life we will react in one of two predetermined ways.  I believe that you are not necessarily a runner or a fighter, but different stimulus will create a different response.  Maybe your child is being bullied or not given a fair shake at school.  Would your blood boil?  Maybe you feel someone is trying to cheat you on a home or car repair.  Will the angry lion come out?

But how does Mr. Powerful Lion respond to things that overwhelm him?  Perhaps you have some debts that are looming over you.  Or is there a hard conversation you need to have with someone you care about?  What does running look like for you?  Is it retail therapy? Long hours working on anything but the elephant in front of you?

Proverbs 28:1 instructs us: “The wicked flee when no one pursues, but the righteous are bold as a lion.”  So, we don’t want to run from challenges.  But roaring like a child’s tantrum isn’t much better.  What option is left?  The bold, young David said this: “The Lord who rescued me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will rescue me from the hand of this Philistine,” (1 Samuel 17:37), With trust in Jesus, we can grow in the face of challenges and rise to meet them.

This summer, help your kids grow to meet the challenges of life.  Edgewater’s “ROAR” Vacation Bible School is a great place to start!  With free dinner every night, it might be a week without roaring or running for you!  It all happens June 10 – 14 from 5 – 7:30 p.m. at Harada Elementary School.  Save your spot now at EdgewaterEastvale.org.

Pastor Tim Eaton, Edgewater Lutheran Church, Sundays at 10am, Harada Elementary,12884 Oakdale Street, Eastvale, CA  92880, http://www.EdgewaterLutheran.org

The Proof

Pastor Dennis Morales

By Pastor Dennis Morales

But they found the stone rolled away from the tomb.…”

Luke 24:2

A man and his five-year old son were driving past a cemetery and noticed a large pile of dirt next to a freshly dug grave when the little boy said, “Look, Dad, one got out!”  Every Easter, we come to celebrate the central aspect of Christianity.  The foundation of the Christians faith is the empty tomb.  The truth is that the grave could not hold Him.  The stone was rolled away not to let Jesus out, but to let all those in the garden tomb in to be witness that Jesus had risen.   In 1901 Abraham Lincoln’s casket was opened because it was feared that his body was not there. Christ’s tomb was opened to prove He is not there.  Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life.  He who believes in Me, though he may die (physically), he shall live.  And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die.  Do you believe this?” (John 11) Because Christ died and rose, we can have the hope of heaven.  Our bodies will cease to function one day, but there is life beyond the grave (1 Corinthians 15:54–55).  Christ’s resurrection guarantees that all of His followers will be resurrected as well.  Because Jesus rose, we too will rise. He promised, “Because I live, you also will live”  (John 14:19).  If you have put your faith in the risen Lord, then you will live again. You no longer need to fear death. Because He came back in a resurrected body, He has given us the assurance that God will give each of us a glorified body one day.  Next time you drive past a cemetery, think of the One Whom the grave could not hold.

Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets Sundays at 8:30am and 10:30am, Wednesdays at 7:30pm at Clara Barton Elementary 7437 Corona Valley Ave, Eastvale. http://www.CalvaryEastvale.org.

Easter H.O.P.E.

Pastor Tim Eaton

By Pastor Tim Eaton

Hopeless.  What does that mean to you?  Does it resonate with you? Is it where you are at?  Hopeless means that we believe we are at the end of the road.  It means we believe that there is no more opportunity for positive change.  We are expecting things to get worse.  It’s a feeling that comes when we can’t see a way out or a way up.  It’s a feeling that comes with dire consequences.  When we are hopeless, we often become action-less as well.  Or worse, we act foolishly and make our situation worse!

But what if we believe the things we keep telling ourselves are wrong? What if there was hope?  What if there was no such thing as a hopeless situation?  Did you know that the joy and the events of Easter come at a seemingly hopeless time?  Jesus, the promised Savior, had died on a cross.  His story seemed over – hopeless.  But three days later, He was alive again! By overcoming death, he pronounced every situation HOPE-FILLED!

When you feel hopeless, remember this promise from Isaiah 40:31: “But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” 

You just never know what God is going to do in your story.  Find hope for your story, this Easter at Edgewater. Join us for Easter Sunday services at 6:30 and 10:00 a.m.; as well as a special Good Friday service on April 19 at 7 p.m., and our Annual Easter Egg Hunt on April 20 from 10 to 11:30 a.m. – all at Harada Elementary.

Pastor Tim Eaton, Edgewater Lutheran Church, Sundays at 10am, Harada Elementary,12884 Oakdale Street, Eastvale, CA  92880, http://www.EdgewaterLutheran.org

A Skunk in the Church

Pastor Mark Hopper

By Pastor Mark Hopper

Diamond Bar- California was a cattle ranch for many years.  It has an interesting history dating back to Mexican land grants and a variety of owners.  Our church is built on the site where the original ranch house stood.  In the 1960’s, Transamerica Corporation bought the ranch and developed it into a beautiful master planned community.

Although Diamond Bar does not look like a cattle ranch today, there are some other residents who still call it home. In the past we have seen deer on the hillside east of our house. We have seen coyotes trotting down our street.  And, we have seen skunks and raccoons.

Our church property used to have some undeveloped land behind the first building.  Hawks built nests in the tall pine trees and skunks were seen from time to time.

One day before a Sunday church service a child approached me with an urgent message. He said there was a skunk in the church!  At first I thought he was kidding, but when several of us investigated we found a skunk lying in the return air duct that ran under the floor. We could clearly see him but we weren’t sure if he was dead or asleep.

What should we do?  Should we evacuate the building or just wait and deal with the skunk after the service?  We decided to wait and not say anything so we wouldn’t cause a panic and risk waking him up. The service ended without incident.  After people left, a friend helped me investigate. We realized the skunk was dead. We removed him and buried him in the land behind the church.

Apparently, he had found his way into the furnace room which had a fresh air grill to the outside. He must have climbed into the return air duct, slid down under the floor and was unable to get back out.  We don’t know how long he was there. We actually saw two other skunks on the property that morning. They were probably looking for their lost friend who had disappeared in the church furnace room.

As a pastor, I like to think that everyone is welcome at our church. We encourage friends and guests to attend our services.  But, we may need to post a new sign, “No Skunks Allowed”!

This article was written by Pastor Mark Hopper of Efree Church of Diamond Bar. Sunday Services are held at 9:00 am & 10:45 am at 3255 South Diamond Bar Blvd. You can contact the church at 909.594.7604 or visit them online at Efreedb.org

Pastor Rob Norris, The Crossings

Are You Worthy of Imitating?

His delight is in the law of the LORD, and in His law he meditates day and night.

Psalm 1:2
Pastor Rob Norris, The Crossings
Pastor Rob Norris, The Crossings

By Pastor Rob Norris

As parents, we need to think about the priorities we are teaching our children by our words and our actions. Ask yourself, If I could pass on my relationship with God to my kids, would they be satisfied with what they receive? If my children could never experience anything more than what I have today, would they be given enough to navigate themselves successfully through life? Would they experience God? One thing I have learned is that your children will listen to what you say, and they will do what you tell them, but they will become who you are. If your daily experience with Christ is less than you want your children to possess, they probably won’t ever have it either.
Your model should be the man in Psalm 1–the one whose “delight” is in spending time with God and His Word (verse 2). The one who “meditates” on the things of God through the ins and outs of the day. The one who keeps him- or herself “firmly planted” by those “streams of water” (verse 3).
Live It:
Share honestly those things that are distracting you right now from your relationship with Christ. How are you showing your children the reality of truly walking with Jesus Christ?
Meeting @ 10:00 at River Heights Intermediate School 7227 Scholar Way, Eastvale CA. Trusting and believing with you.
Pastor Rob

Pastor’s Corner: The Cross

“Then He came and touched the open coffin, and those who carried him stood still…”


Luke 7:14 
Photo Courtesy: Pexels

By Pastor Dennis Morales

There is no arguing that one of the most painful occurrences in life is losing a loved one.  Jesus came upon a widow who had just lost her only son.  .  According to old Jewish custom, the women would precede a funeral procession because women were believed to have brought death into the world in the line of Eve.  This widow would be the first person He would see and He looked at her with compassion (Luke 7:13).  It was custom for family members and friends to come and touch the coffin, which would halt the procession, and say a few words of comfort to the survived. Then the procession would continue.  According to custom, Jesus stood at the procession and touched the coffin.  Jesus tells the woman “do not weep.”  He then tells the young man in the coffin to “get up.”  “So that he who was dead sat up and began to speak” (Luke 7:15).  What Jesus did was unprecedented.   Under normal circumstances the funeral procession would have continued.  But when Jesus stopped the funeral procession, and it never continued!  Jesus essentially stopped death in its tracks.  This is what Jesus has done for all mankind through the Cross.  He has halted the effect of sin and eternal death upon all those who believe in Him (Jn 3:16).  Jesus’ death on the Cross defeated sin and He further punctuates this by His Rising from the dead.  In this is the Easter message.  (1 Corinthians 15:21-22, 55-57)   Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets Sundays 8:30 and 10:30am/Wednesdays 7pm @ Clara Barton Elementary (calvaryeastvale.org).  EASTER SERVICES:  Good Friday @ 7pm and Easter @ 9:30am

Pastor Dennis Morales

A Unique Love

Pastor Dennis Morales
Pastor Dennis Morales

By Pastor Dennis Morales

Throughout his administration, Abraham Lincoln was a president under fire, especially during the scarring years of the Civil War. And though he knew he would make errors of office, he resolved never to compromise his integrity. So strong was this resolve that he once said, “I desire so to conduct the affairs of this administration that if at the end, when I come to lay down the reins of power, I have lost every other friend on earth, I shall at least have one friend left, and that friend shall be down inside of me.”  Proverbs says that a “friend loves at all times” (proverbs 17:17).    True friendship has a tremendous effect in life.  Research says that having strong and stable friendships can help us to manage stress, which can have a dramatically impact on our physical health. If you know that you’ll have people by your side in times of worry, it can make a huge difference when trying to manage the situation.  Jesus spoke highly of both love and friendship.  Jesus said loving one another is a mark of knowing Him.  “Love one another.  As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” (Jn 13:35).  As you read the famous 1 Corinthians 13 love chapter, we see words in our language that qualify as descriptors or adjectives.  In the original Greek language, these words are action words.  John 15:13 says “greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.”  God, with love in action, sent His Son.  His Son actively loved by sacrificing His life for all mankind (John 3:16), so that we can have the hope of Heaven. 

Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets Sundays at 8:30am and 10:30am, Wednesdays at 7:30pm at Clara Barton Elementary 7437 Corona Valley Ave, Eastvale. www.CalvaryEastvale.org.

The Lost Book

Pastor Mark Hopper

By Pastor Mark Hopper

Recently, my wife flew home from Arizona on Southwest Airlines. She had been in Phoenix for a few days visiting her family. Things went smoothly and her flight was on time. I picked her up and we headed home in heavy afternoon traffic. Suddenly she realized that she had left her book on the airplane that was going on to Oakland. She had changed seats shortly after she boarded the plane and had left the book in the seat pocket in front of her.

This was no ordinary book. The book she had been reading was the one that was just published with my name on it!  The book is titled, “Let Me Encourage You” by Pastor Mark Hopper. It is a collection of 365 articles and stories that I have written over the past ten years for this local paper. Over a decade ago, the publishers invited me to write a weekly article for their local advertising publication.  I have enjoyed the opportunity to write many different stories and articles.

A friend encouraged me to put these articles into a book.  It took a lot of time to read through hundreds of stories and decide which ones to include in the book. Many of the articles are about my own family. Other stories are about current events in our community or country.  It was fun reading these stories and articles again.

After my wife realized she had left my book on the plane, she called the airline. They gave her the local number for the Southwest baggage office at the airport. She explained she had left her book on the plane and wondered if it had been found. She emphasized that this was no ordinary book. It was a book authored by her husband!

We were pleasantly surprised to hear that they had found the book on the plane and it was safely in the lost luggage office.  We could come by and pick it up any time. What a relief. The lost book was found!  Maybe the helpful employee will read a little before we pick it up. If you would like to purchase a copy for yourself or for a friend, you can contact me at my email address (markh@efreedb.org). But you have to promise to not leave it on an airplane!  Pastor Mark Hopper  Efree Church of Diamond Bar 

This article was written by Pastor Mark Hopper of Efree Church of Diamond Bar. Sunday Services are held at 9:00 am & 10:45 am at 3255 South Diamond Bar Blvd. You can contact the church at 909.594.7604 or visit them online at Efreedb.org

Tax Time

Pastor Dennis Morales of Calvary Chapel Eastvale

By Pastor Dennis Morales

“Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus, that a census be taken of all the inhabited earth…” Luke 2:1-5

I ran across a quote that read “IRS auditor to taxpayer, as nurse prepares a syringe: “She is going to numb the area around your wallet.”  In most cases, when we hear the word tax, our minds do go to our wallets.   It was no accident that Dr. Luke mentioned the name of Caesar Augustus. This man signed a tax bill that the whole world (of that day) be taxed. He needed money to raise an army to control his vast empire and to live in luxury himself. 

It was prophesied that Jesus would be born in Bethlehem of the house and lineage of King David (Micah 5:2) 700 years before.  Mary and Joseph resided in Nazareth.  At the very time for Mary to give birth, all were summoned to the house of their ancestry for the census (Luke 2:1-5).  All who were of the lineage of David were to visit Bethlehem.  Both Mary and Joseph are of the lineage of David, so both had to go to Bethlehem.

Precisely according to Bible prophecy, and God’s sovereignty, Mary gave birth to Jesus in Bethlehem (Matthew 1:21-23, Isaiah 7:14 prophesied 800 years before). Such an event rooted deeply in prophesy and is proven that man could not orchestrate something of this magnitude. 

Joy came to the world in miraculous fashion.  This was a taxation time in history where we look back at the and its forever linked to our hearts, not our wallet.  God orchestrated when the Messiah, Jesus, was to be born into this world to save mankind from sin and instill hope forever into all who believe.  He did this for you.   

Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets at Clara Barton Elementary in Eastvale.  Services are held Sundays at 8:30 and 10:30am.  Wednesdays at 7pm.   Celebrate Christmas with us on December 23.

Joy Stealers

Tim Eaton

By Pastor Tim Eaton

Joy.  Its as much a part of Christmas as trees, gifts, mangers, and mall Santas.  We see signs that say it, and hear songs that sing about it.  But do we have it? The tragedy of Christmas is that we often find a million reasons not to have joy at this “The most wonderful time of the year.” Spending too much on gifts, the pressure to have the house, the clothes, or the family just right; juggling family time with other commitments; or extended family drama can drain the joy right out of Christmas.  For still others the joy of Christmas has been stolen more naturally by the onset of physical ailments or the loss of loved ones.

For a season of joy there sure seems to be a lack of it!  But that’s exactly why God sent his son into the world.  He sent him to be a gift to overshadow and overpower even the worst of joy stealers.  His gift of Jesus was announced with these words: “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.” (Luke 2:10)  Indeed, he is greater than whatever troubles you have! This Christmas clear away the stress and the clutter and remember the one who is the reason for the season is greater than the stressors of the season.  When your Christmas isn’t perfect remember that HE IS the perfect gift for you.

Some people love wrapping gifts – other can’t stand it!  To restore your holiday JOY, Edgewater will be offering totally free (no donation) gift wrapping in front of Kohl’s in Eastvale on Sunday, December 16th from 2 to 5 pm.  We are gathering a team that love wrapping just in case you don’t.

Put the JOY back in your Christmas: Christmas Music Celebration 12/23 5pm Christmas Eve 12/24 5pm. Pastor Tim Eaton, Edgewater Lutheran Church Sundays at 10am, Harada Elementary, 12884 Oakdale Street, Eastvale, CA  92880, http://www.EdgewaterLutheran.org

Pastor Dennis Morales

Pastor’s Corner: Things That Matter

By Pastor Dennis Morales

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, Ihave kept the faith.” 2 Timothy 4:7

Paul the Apostle is nearing the end of his life.  He is contemplating the things God had called him to accomplish.  This is his swansong.  I am immediately impressed with the confidence with which he is able to say “I finished.”  It’s been said that “a wasted life is really nothing more than a collection of wasted days. As God gives us life, each one of us starts the new year with the same number of opportunities—365—that we can choose to either use and invest in eternal things or allow to drift by without taking advantage of the gift we have been given.”  I was walking through a cemetery after afuneral service and my eye caught a headstone that read “a life stillunfinished.”  We would naturally say thatabout anyone that had passed from this world at a young age, but this wassomeone who passed at 78!  I don’t wantto come to the end and think of all the things I should have done or the ways Ishould have stepped out in faith.  Paulcalls life a “race.”  My favorite racesin the Olympics are the sprints.  Theseraces are literally over in seconds, but I am always impressed with the amazingspeed of the athletes.  The race referredto by Paul is likened to a “long distance” run. A long distance run takes faith, endurance, and focus.  Jesus “for the joy that was set before Himendured the cross, despising the shame.” (Hebrews 12:2).  God calls us to focus and invest in thingsthat matter so that we might finish well. 


Calvary Chapel Eastvale Meets Wednesdays at 7pm and Sundays at 8:30 and10:30 am  at Clara Barton Elementary 7437Corona Valley Ave, Eastvale. 

United We Stand, Divided We Fall

By Jeremy Mercer

Our country is more divided than it’s been since the Civil War. With politics creeping into every facet of our lives, from sports to movies to even the church, America is a divided nation. I’m a problem-solver. I always seek to understand so I can find solutions. My thoughts go to an important verse in the Bible. First Corinthians 1:10 powerfully says, “I appeal to you, dear brothers and sisters, by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, to live in harmony with each other. Let there be no divisions in the church. Rather, be of one mind, united in thought and purpose.”

 

For human beings, this is often very challenging. However, the Word of God gives us this instruction because (1) it’s what God wants for us, (2) we need to hear it, and (3) by the working of the Holy Spirit in our lives, IT IS POSSIBLE! God would never ask us to do something that we could not accomplish. But God DID instruct us to live this way so it IS something we can do.

 

We must allow the Holy Spirit to work in our hearts to humble ourselves under the mighty hand of God (1 Peter 5:6), to forgive each other, and to bring us into true unity, as God wants for His church to be. Ephesians 4:32 says, “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” Imagine if we lived that!

 

I believe the church is to be the answer, or rather, to be an example of the answer to the world. Jesus did tell us, after all, to be “salt and light.” (Matthew 5:13-16). We must each choose this. I am choosing this. Will you choose this with me?

Jeremy Mercer is the lead Pastor at Connection Church in Corona California

Location: 1441 E. 6th Street, Corona, CA 92879

Phone (951) 737-2822

Email office@connectcorona.com

Service Time: 10:30 am Sunday