Category Archives: Pastors Corner

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

Directing Traffic

By Mark Hopper

My wife taught sixth grade at Chaparral Middle School in Diamond Bar California. She loved her students and they loved her too. She made learning fun and helped students succeed.

One of the worst things about teaching at Chaparral was the volume of traffic at the beginning and end of each school day. Like most teachers Jeanne got to school early to avoid the crush of cars.

When I was driving to my office one day I noticed the traffic light near Jeanne’s school was out. There were no flashing red lights either. Most people were stopping but some were not. Clearly this was a dangerous situation. There was a long line of southbound cars trying to turn on to the street leading to the school. There were also a long line of cars on the residential street trying to get away from the school after they had dropped off their students.

But the cars going northbound lane of Diamond Bar Blvd were not stopping. They drove right through the intersection without slowing or stopping. It seemed like there would be an accident at any moment.

I pulled over on the side street and got out of my car. I carefully walked out into to the middle of the intersection and motioned for all of the approaching cars to stop. Then I began to direct traffic on all four sides of the intersection. I would allow 10-15 cars to go one way and did the same with the traffic going the opposite way. I also alternated the cars making left turns. Gradually traffic improved and accidents were avoided.

Eventually a motorcycle officer arrived on the scene. I asked him if he wanted to take over but he told me I was doing a pretty good job. One of my wife’s students ran into her classroom to report that her husband was out in the middle of Diamond Bar Blvd directing traffic. She didn’t believe him at first but several other students confirmed his story.

Finally the police officer did take over and I went on to work. It was a crazy situation but thankfully no one was hurt. There is a passage in the Bible in Luke chapter 15 about a Good Samaritan who stopped to help a stranger who had been robbed and injured. Let me encourage you to follow his example and be willing to stop and help when you face an unexpected situation. You may save a life or prevent serious injury to a stranger. You will be glad you did and they will too. 

Read 365 more stories and articles (one for every day of the year) in the book Let me Encourage You by Mark Hopper. You can purchase two copies for only $30 plus postage ($5). Buy one for yourself and one to give a friend. Order your copies at mark@efreedb.org.

Depth

By Pastor Dennis Morales

“Let your roots grow down into Him, and let your lives be built on Him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.” Colossians 2:6-7

There are many advertisements for virtual tours of homes everywhere you turn nowadays. Cyberspace has opened opportunities and a whole new world of virtual experiences to the online and “connected” generation. But one thing we can agree on is that the virtual experience isn’t reality. Its life like, but not the real thing. On TV we see house hunters who get to see and smell the home, we are just spectators. Online you can have a 360-degree view, but with a virtual experience, you don’t see the neighborhood, you don’t hear the neighbors you can’t appreciate the colors or materials up close and personal. The virtual world is a copy of the real world. The virtual world is not a true measure of the world, but a copy, and a superficial one at most. It’s possible as a person in this life to live superficially, and walk a talk a good game, but have no depth.

The Apostle Paul encourages the Colossian church to “let your roots grow down…let your lives be built on Him.” He was calling the church to grow and not be superficial. Paul says don’t live life as though we’re on a virtual tour. We do this when we live as if there is no deeper meaning or purpose to our lives. Sadly, people seem to be completely unaware of the danger of living only on the surface. Paul says don’t measure by the world’s standards. Build on him, grow your faith, and you will overflow with thankfulness. Some measure others by height – that is, how high they climb the ladder of achievement. Someone may be worth a million bucks, but also be empty inside.

Scripture says that it measures a person by his depth. Like a tree, everything depends on its roots. The psalmist said “…his delight is in the law of the Lord… he will be like a tree firmly planted…” (Psalm 1:1-3). The true measure of a person isn’t influence, stature, or success, but the depth of his life. Be sure your foundation is the Lord; Build your house on the rock.

Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets Sundays 8:30 & 10:30 am at Eastvale Elementary. Visit their website at http://www.calvaryeastvale.org. Download their app to be up to date on all events. Livestream, YouTube live, and Facebook live is available.

One Opinion

Pastor Dennis Morales
Pastor Dennis Morales

By Pastor Dennis Morales

“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven…” Matthew 7:21-23

An umpire named Babe Pinelli once called Babe Ruth out on strikes. When the crowd booed with sharp disapproval at the call, the legendary Ruth turned to the umpire with scorn and said, “There’s 40,000 people here who know that the last pitch was a ball, tomato head.” Suspecting that the umpire would erupt with anger, the coaches and players braced themselves for Ruth’s ejection. However, the cool headed Pinelli replied, “Maybe so, Babe, but mine is the only opinion that counts.”

When it comes to Heaven, God’s opinion is the only one that counts. I believe people tread shaky ground when they assert their own personal philosophy as to how God will judge. These two verses in Matthew chapter 7 are known to be among the “scariest” or thought provoking in Scripture. Toward the end of the Sermon on the Mount (which begins in Matthew 5), Jesus gives a final warning about what true faith is. Jesus warns His disciples that there will be wolves in sheep clothing who preach a good game and can even perform miracles, but they are not His followers. Jesus wasn’t referring to their works, he was referring to their hearts. He knows the thoughts and hearts of men (1 Samuel 16:7).

Christianity without faith is nominal. Nominal Christianity is religion. Nominal Christianity doesn’t get us into His presence for eternity, it’s faith. Scripture says “without faith, it’s impossible to please the Lord” (Hebrews 11:6). Scripture also says it is by “faith that we are made right with God” (Romans 5:1). In Mark 10, Jesus encounters a “Rich Young Ruler.” The Rich Young Ruler said “Lord, how can I have eternal life?” Jesus replied, “sell everything and follow me.” The Ruler went away sad and dejected. Why? Because it would have taken “faith” to give up everything he owned and follow Him. Jesus, our good physician, will always give you the right advise (Mark 2:17).

Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets Sundays 8:30 & 10:30 am at Eastvale Elementary. Visit their website at http://www.calvaryeastvale.org. Download their app to be up to date on all events. Livestream, YouTube live, and Facebook live is available.

Trees

By Mark Hopper

My wife loved to make attractive trees for friends and family members. She purchased cone-shaped Styrofoam trees and decorated them with costume jewelry. She used a hot-glue gun to apply adhesive to the tree and arrange the jewelry in a variety of patterns.

She got this idea when she saw some trees at Roger’s Garden in Newport Beach. The decorated foam trees were priced at several hundred dollars. She decided to make one for herself with some of the jewelry she had at home. It turned out very nice. When people learned she had made the tree herself, they asked if she would make them one also. Women gathered costume jewelry in their home and gave it to my wife and she crafted a beautifully decorated piece for them. She made more than one hundred jewelry trees for friends and family.

Many women shared how much they enjoyed their tree. Jewelry that was just sitting in a drawer was now on display for everyone to enjoy. Some have additional sentimental value when the jewelry is from a parent or grandparent. One woman had several watches that belonged to her father and grandfather. Another woman had commemorative pins with emblems from places she had visited with her husband.

Every tree was unique. While she was making each tree she prayed for the family or individual she was making it for. She enjoyed working with her hands and using her time to craft these attractive display pieces. There is a verse in the Bible that says, “Use the gifts and abilities that God has given you to serve others (First Peter 4:10).  I believe everyone has skills and abilities they can use to help other people. Older adults have experience in woodworking, pottery, sewing and painting. Younger adults have skills in technology, music and sports. The list is endless.

Let me encourage you to use the gifts and abilities that God has given you to help other people. A wonderful way to do this is by volunteering at a local school, hospital or nursing home. One of the greatest things you can share is your time. When you share your time, skills and abilities with other people you will encourage them and you will feel encouraged too.

Read 365 more stories and articles (one for every day of the year) in the book Let me Encourage You by Mark Hopper. You can purchase two copies for only $30 plus postage ($5). Buy one for yourself and one to give a friend. Order your copies at mark@efreedb.org.

Through The Fire

By Pastor Dennis Morales

“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the Lord your God…”. Isaiah 43:2,3

The kingdom of Judah seemed to fear Babylon’s army and captivity. This verse is comforting because God encourages His people through the most difficult of circumstance and guides them. This is a reminder that He is not just with us in times of blessing, but also in difficulty. Sometimes our trials come in the way of waters, or rivers, or even fire. I’m reminded of the three friends, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, thrown into the fire because they wouldn’t bow down to an idol. They were thrown into the furnace but didn’t burn. The King who had them sentenced to death looked into the fiery furnace and quickly realized they were not alone. The Lord was with them in the fire. Imagine the conversation they had with the Lord! (Daniel 3:19-25). What is your conversation like when you realize God is in total control of your trial? When you realize that the “flame is NOT consuming you?” Where do you turn when things get difficult? Seek the one who created the waters, rivers, and fire. The One who has dominion over them. When king Hezekiah was sent a threatening letter from the enemy, he took this letter and spread it before the Lord. God told him to go to sleep. And he did! He woke up to a defeated enemy army. (2 Kings 19:35)

We are reminded to “fear not” in Scripture. In fact the Bible mentions “fear not” 365 times. That’s one “fear not” per day. Scripture tells us “Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thessalonians 5:18). The emphasis on “all circumstance,” great or small. Whether it be water, river, or fire, the Lord is with you. Won’t you trust Him today?

Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets Sundays 8:30 & 10:30 am at Eastvale Elementary. Visit their website at http://www.calvaryeastvale.org. Download their app to be up to date on all events. Livestream, YouTube live, and Facebook live is available.

Pray for your Kids and Grandkids

By Mark Hopper

University of Arizona baseball Coach Jerry Kendal shared a wonderful story at a Men’s Conference I attended in the 1980’s. When Jerry was a young boy he burst into his grandfather’s bedroom while Jerry was playing hide and seek with his siblings. He was startled to find his grandfather kneeling by his bed in prayer. When Jerry tried to apologize his grandfather told him to not worry – he said he was just praying for Jerry.  

I’m sure that every parent and grandparent prays for their children and grandchildren every day. I always prayed for their health and safety.  And I prayed for their faith, their friends and their future.

I prayed that they would have a vibrant personal faith in Christ. Each generation must decide for themselves if they will become followers of Jesus. Parents and grandparents can sow the seeds of faith in the next generation but each one must decide for themselves who they will follow. The Old Testament leader Joshua said he and his family chose to follow the Lord (Joshua 24:15).

Friends are a vital part of a child’s development. This is true for young children and teenagers, too. Friends have a large influence in a child’s development. Teenagers are impacted by peer pressure too. Friends also provide encouragement and reassurance during those formative teenage years. Friends can draw your children closer to God or steer them away from Him. I prayed for good friends with a common faith.

I also prayed for their future. I prayed God would help them in their studies and guide them in their choice of careers. I also prayed they would find a spouse who shared their faith and values.

Author Tim Kimmel wrote a book titled – Extreme Grandparenting. In his book he emphasized how important grandparents are in the lives of their children and grandchildren. One of the most important things they can do is to pray for their children and grandchildren. The Apostle Paul instructed older men and women to live lives that the younger generations would follow (Titus 2:2-4). I’m sure this included prayer. Let me encourage you to pray for your children and grandchildren every day. Pray for their faith, friends and future. Pray for their health and safety too. You will be glad you did and they will too. 

Read 365 more stories and articles (one for every day of the year) in the book Let me Encourage You by Mark Hopper. You can purchase two copies for only $30 plus postage ($5). Buy one for yourself and one to give a friend. Order your copies at mark@efreedb.org.

New Hillcrest Baptist Church Pastor

Nathan King

Hillcrest Baptist Church is pleased to congratulate and welcome Matthew Miles as its new pastor. Pastor Matt has served as an Assistant Pastor at Temple Baptist Church in Lacey, WA since 2017. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree from West Coast Baptist College in Lancas-ter, CA and a Master of Divinity from Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA. He and his wife, Rizza, have three wonderful children.

Our church is excited to have Pastor Matt with us starting in July. We invite our community and neighbors to our church every Sunday morning at 10:30am! The meeting location is at Vandermolen Elementary (6744 Carenlian St. Mira Loma, CA 91752). Our church also provides children and nursery programs. In addition, we provide a Chinese service for those that are comfortable with Mandarin. For more information about our church, go to visithillcrest.org or give us a call at 951-357-6737. Please pray for our church in these exciting times!

A Hope and a Future (Part Two)

By Mark Hopper
There are several examples of suicide in the Bible. None of them are good. Judas was the disciple who betrayed Jesus. When he realized the terrible thing he had done, Judas took his own life (Matthew 27:5). A wise man named Ahithophel killed himself after David’s rebellious son Absalom rejected his advice (Second Samuel 17:23). The Apostle Paul prevented a Roman soldier from killing himself. Paul reassured the guard that he and all of the prisoners had remained in the jail after a powerful earthquake opened the doors. Paul’s quick action and words stopped the soldier from killing himself (Acts 16:28).
I continue to read and hear about the declining mental health among teens and adults during the Covid19 pandemic. Reports of attempted suicides and self-inflicted harm is increasing among students at an alarming rate. What can parents and peers do to help those who are struggling and at risk of taking their own lives?
First, pray for the hearts and minds of students and adults around you. Ask God to give them hope and help to face these uncertain times.
Second, be alert to conversations and conduct that might signal a person is considering suicide. My son is now an Assistant Principal at a local high school. He launched a program with the staff and administrators to do a mental health update every Monday of students on their campus who might be at risk of harming themselves.
Third, provide hope and encouragement through your own words and actions. Offer to spend time with those who are struggling. Offer to connect them with a local pastor, counselor or mental health professional. Ask the person to make a commitment to you that they will call you before they take any steps to harm or injure themselves.
Fourth, don’t let them dwell on the negative but focus on the positive things in their life (Philippians 4:6-9). When a person takes their own life they leave a trail of pain and heartache in the lives of others. If you or someone you know are in a dark place, let me encourage you to get help right now. Make a call or get to someone’s office or home right now. Don’t wait until it is too late. You will be glad you did and your friends and loved ones will too. (continued)
Read 365 more stories and articles (one for every day of the year) in the book Let me Encourage You by Mark Hopper. You can purchase two copies for only $30 plus postage ($5). Buy one for yourself and one to give a friend. Order your copies at mark@efreedb.org.

Continue in Humility

By Nathan S. Kang
1 Peter 5:5-7
Peter was writing to Christians across the world who were persecuted for their faith. In 1 Peter 5, he encourages the elders to lead the church and the younger to submit to the elders. To the rest, he says to be clothed in humility. Peter knew a thing or two about being humbled by the Lord. The phrase “be clothed” is a Greek word which describes a serving slave tying a knot on a garment or an apron. He was identified by it. Likewise, Christians ought to be clothed with humility. The mark of a Christian life is humility. Why? Peter gives the reason which is that God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble. It’s the same phrase found in Proverbs 3:34 and in James 4:4-6.

In Proverbs 6:16-17, the first abomination to God is a proud look. In verse 6 he calls upon the believers to humble themselves under the mighty hand of God. The Greek word “humble” indicates one to bring themselves lower. How do we humble ourselves? We bring ourselves lower and under the mighty hand of God. Remember God’s mighty hand. He is a sovereign God and in control of everything. It is when we humble ourselves that God would exalt us according His time. Then Peter concludes this portion of his letter by stating in verse 7 to cast all of our care to God for God cares about us. What are we casting? Our anxiety and worries. Remember he was writing to persecuted believers. He encourages them to cast their anxieties and sufferings to God because God cares about them.

God cares about you. The Psalmist in Psalm 55:22 says we can cast all of our burdens unto Him. Jesus said in Matthew 11:28, we can come unto Him to find rest. In Hebrews 4:16, believers can come to Him and find mercy. It all begins with humility. If we are prideful, we won’t cast our cares upon God because we think we have it all figured out. We don’t, we must be humble. That is why in verse 8-11, we see that through humility, we can resist the Devil, remain steadfast in faith, and be strengthened by Jesus through the gospel. We were humbled when we accepted Christ as our Lord and Savior, likewise let us continue in humility!

Hillcrest Baptist Church Pastor Nathan S. Kang Website: visithillcrest.org . Meets at Vandermolen Elementary School on Sundays at 10:30am 6744 Carenlian St. Mira Loma, CA 91752

“Life Is…”

By Pastor 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 at Eastvale Elementary located at 13031 Orange St, Eastvale. Sundays 8:30/10:30am. Livestream, YouTube Live, and Facebook Live is also available. http://www.calvaryeastvale.org.

He Will Show You

By Pastor Dennis Morales
“…Leave your country, your family, and your father’s home for a land that I will show you.” – Genesis 12:1
It can be tough after 2 years of pandemic to really gather up any hope for a better year this year, but we make the best of it and hope for a better outcome. Sometimes in God’s economy, He will lead us to take a step of faith not revealing where He’s taking us. Hebrews 11 is known as the hall of faith. We see many people in the Bible leading with steps of faith. They’re ordinary men and women taking great steps of faith. God told Abraham to leave his homeland, and trust where He would lead him and his family. Hebrews 11 gives us insight to Genesis 12. It was by faith that Abraham obeyed when God called him to leave home and go to another land that God would give him as his inheritance. He went without knowing where he was going (Hebrews 11:8). God cares about your future (Jeremiah 29:11). So many people walk fearfully through the days and months because they don’t know who to trust. But rest assured, God “will show you.” God may not map out all the details for you. It would be nice sometimes to know everything now, like who we’ll marry, where you’ll be in 10 years, or what will be our profession. But God “will show you.” He will take you one step at a time. When He takes you through a door, He will direct you to the next one. Abraham was called by God to leave his homeland and go to an unknown place that “God would show him.” God chose Abraham from a place of idols and took him to a place of faith in Him. Put your trust in God (Proverbs 3:5-6), walk by faith, and “He will show you” (Hebrews 11:1). Corrie Ten Boom once said, “Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.” Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets at Eastvale Elementary located at 13031 Orange St, Eastvale. Sundays 8:30/10:30am. Livestream, YouTube Live, and Facebook Live is also available. http://www.calvaryeastvale.org.

Fear of Heights

Pastor Mark Hopper

By Mark Hopper
There are a lot of things you probably didn’t know about your spouse before you got married. But when you begin married life together you may discover some things you weren’t aware of. One of the things that I didn’t realize was that my wife was afraid of heights. I learned this on our honeymoon when we met the church youth group on the back-packing trip into Havasu Canyon. I rode in a helicopter from the rim to the campground in five minutes while my new wife hiked into the canyon with most of the students for five hours.
One of the activities during our four days in Havasu Canyon was climbing down to the bottom of the Mooney Falls. This was a steep climb through a couple of small caves and down the face of the canyon wall using steel pegs and chains. My wife didn’t want to participate in the climb to the bottom of Mooney Falls but I insisted everyone had to come. She wasn’t very happy but she did make it down with the others. However, the climb back up was very frightening. She froze about half way up and couldn’t move. It took a lot of pleading and encouraging to get her back to the top. I had no idea how afraid she was of heights.
A few years later we led a group of teenagers on a ski trip from Dallas to Colorado. We chartered a bus that left on Christmas night and returned on New Year’s Eve. We stayed at a church camp outside of Denver and enjoyed four days of skiing in the Rocky Mountains.
My wife and I had no experience skiing. But we were willing to try. The students were quick learners but we struggled to figure it out. After a day of basic lessons we ventured up the slopes on the chair lift. My wife didn’t like being so far off the ground and was worried about getting off the ski lift at the top of the mountain.
Things went okay while we followed a level trail to the ski slope. When we turned the corner and looked at the slope it was breathtaking. It looked like we were going straight downhill. Did I mention that my wife was afraid of heights? It was a long fright-filled struggle down the slope. After that my wife decided she preferred to stay in the ski lodge and drink hot chocolate and leave the skiing to the younger students.
All of us are afraid of something – spiders, the dark, flying and heights. There are many verses in the Bible that say, “Fear not for I am with you” (Joshua 1:8 / Isaiah 41:10). Let me encourage you to face your fears and trust God to help you when you are in a fearful situation. You will be glad you did and He will too.

You Can Only Play So Much Golf

By Mark Hopper
In the 1990’s, I led a small team of adults from our church in California to Guatemala. We were going there to help with the construction of a school near Guatemala City. My wife and I had led a younger team of high school and college students to Guatemala in the 1970’s. This time we went with a seasoned group of older adults.


Guatemala is a beautiful country with beautiful people. Several dormant volcanoes tower over the countryside. The vegetation is lush and green. Guatemala is known for its popular coffee beans and wonderful Avocadoes.


While we were working on the construction site we met a man who was doing electrical work. He was a retired engineer who had come by himself at his own expense to pull wires and install electrical outlets in the classrooms. He was planning to be there for a month


I don’t remember his name but I do remember something he said. When I asked him why he had come to Guatemala to work on this project he replied, “You can only play so much golf”. He went on to explain that when he retired from his career as an electrical engineer he spent a lot of time playing golf with some of his buddies. But after a year of retirement he felt he needed to do something more with his time. When he heard about the project in Guatemala, he decided to put his golf clubs in the closet and spend some time helping other people.


Please don’t misunderstand. I like golf. In fact, my wife says I don’t play enough golf. But I think we all know that there are other things that are more important. We may get a sense of enjoyment from a good round of golf. But we can get an even greater sense of fulfillment when we use our time and talents to serve others.


There is a passage in the Bible that says, “Put yourself aside and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with your own interests. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand” (Philippians 2:4 – The Message Bible). You won’t find lasting fulfillment just doing things that you like. Real fulfillment is found when we volunteer our time and use our abilities to help others. You won’t find happiness looking for it. You stumble across it when you serve others. Let me encourage you to volunteer some of your time to serve at your church or in your community. Don’t sit home and watch TV. Get off the couch and get into the community and help people. And allow yourself a little time for a round of golf with your buddies too! You will be glad you did!

Read 365 more stories and articles (one for every day of the year) in the book Let me Encourage You by Mark Hopper. You can purchase two copies for only $30 plus postage ($5). Buy one for yourself and one to give a friend. Order your copies at mark@efreedb.org.

Praise Him

By Pastor Dennis Morales
“Through Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of [our] lips, giving thanks to His name.” Hebrews 13:15
Words are powerful, especially words of praise or thanks. God is honored with our words of praise and thanksgiving. It is easy to praise God when the sun is shining, or when our kids are getting good grades in school, or maybe if we have received a promotion at work. Scripture says that praise is also a sacrifice at times. That’s when things are not too good. When we praise God in the difficulty, it is the praise of sacrifice. When we praise Him, we proclaim our faith in Him.

The Psalmist writes “As for me, I will always have hope. I will praise you more and more (Psalm 71:14). A sacrifice of praise is something that we offer to God — in times of well-being and in times of sorrow. Never allow praise to become a habit of only a celebratory activity. When times are tough, praise has the ability to lighten our hearts and fill us with a sense of possibility, love, and security that can only come from Heaven’s throne. When you are able to praise God in the difficulty, you are trusting what God sees and His provision.

In the late 1800’s George Mueller operated an orphanage that at one time had 1,000 orphans. One morning there was no food to eat, but he called all the children and staff together and prayed thanking God for the provision of food, even though no food was on the table. A few moments later a baker knocked on the door. He told Mr. Muller that God had led him to bake bread the night before and give it to the orphanage. Before the bread was given to the children, a milkman knocked on the door. He said that his milk truck had broken down and he wanted to give the milk to the orphanage. George Muller gave thanks, even when it took faith to do so.

Praise is another word for admiration, and it’s often linked to thanksgiving. Take some time and praise Him today for all He has done. Praise Him because He is able. “Praise Him because He is worthy” (Psalm 145:3).

Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets at Eastvale Elementary located at 13031 Orange St, Eastvale. Sundays 8:30/10:30am. Livestream, YouTube Live, and Facebook Live is also available. http://www.calvaryeastvale.org.

A New School Year

By Melody Kraemer

A new school year! Who is ready? I have enjoyed these past summer months with my kids at home, and it seemed we were off to some adventure almost every day. 

It could be that we subconsciously are making up for the summer before when we were in “lockdown.” The summer, let alone this year, has flown by in a blink of an eye. Now the kids will be starting school, and though that much-needed break between us is probably needed. I will miss the lazy days of sleeping in, the swimming, the extended sunshine days, no schedules, and all the downtime. Now isn’t that what summer is all about?  

In a few short days, we will buckle back down and get back on our daily schedule. It won’t be easy, and granted, I should have stayed on a schedule during the summer, but my kids needed this break and had only a few short weeks of summer. With my boys having ASD, autism spectrum disorder,  they attended ESY (extended school year). So these few weeks of summer were precious to us, we enjoyed them and made as many memories as we could.  

My youngest will even be going back to school with a brand new look. He decided to find his daddy’s beard trimmer and start shaving his head. There’s never a dull moment in our world, now onto the next season of life. Reach out and let me know if you are ready for school. 


Ecclesiastes 3:1
1. For everything there is a season, and a time for every a purpose under heaven


 Melody Kraemer is the Editor and Publisher of  AutismMomAdventures.com

Follow her on Instagram @So_Cal_Autism_Mom_Adventures and Facebook.com/autismmomadventures 

For more information or general encouragement, feel free to email her at: autismmomofboys@gmail.com.

Deliberate Confidence

By Pastor Dennis Morales

“But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me…” 2 Timothy 4:17

What gives you confidence?  Watching the “2020” Olympics, I can’t help but to be impressed by the confidence of the athletes who are on one of the biggest stages of their lives.    Families and whole countries are cheering them on and hoping they bring home the gold.   It would seem a lifetime of training, a strong support system, a focused mind, and for some faith, has given these athletes such strong confidence.   Paul the Apostle used athletic metaphors often.  One of his last metaphors he employed was of both a fighter and runner.   As Paul was penned his swan song letter to Timothy, he says “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith” (2 Timothy 4:7). What is most impressive is that he wrote these words from prison, with few friends left.  In prison for his faith in Christ.  Having few friends willing to stand with him for fear of their own lives, or because of societal shame.  What then gave Paul confidence?  Paul experienced God standing with him in past circumstances and difficulties.  He also knew countless others were spurred to faith in Christ through his chains as his faith was on display (Philippians 1:12).  Many saw the reality of Christ power in his willingness to suffer for Christ.  Oswald Chambers once said, “Faith is deliberate confidence in the character of God whose ways you may not understand at the time.”   Paul found himself at times in chains, being beaten, shipwrecked, and even abandoned, but those were times when he knew the Lord was closest and stood with him (2 Timothy 4:17).  Paul said, “none of these things move me” so to finish his race with joy (Acts 20:24).  Joy in the fact that he would finish his race on this side of Heaven with unwavering faith.  Deliberate confidence is (Faith) that God is always in control.  The Lord stood with Paul as Paul stood with the Lord.  I pray you that you live deliberately confident in the fact that God hears you and is standing with you. 

Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets at Eastvale Elementary located at 13031 Orange St, Eastvale.  Sundays 8:30/10:30am.  Livestream, YouTube Live, and Facebook Live is also available.  http://www.calvaryeastvale.org. 

India

By Mark Hopper

One of the most memorable places my wife and I have visited is India. Several years ago we flew from Los Angeles to Taiwan then on to Singapore and arrived in Mumbai on the west coast of India. It was a long journey. We spent several days in Mumbai seeing some of the sights and visiting some ministries working among the poorest people in the city. Then we flew to Hyderabad where our host met us at the airport and drove 3-4 hours outside the city to a boarding school and orphanage.

We were surprised by the heavy traffic. Driving in India is not for the faint hearted. Hundreds of cars, trucks and scooters crammed together honking their horns as they waited for the traffic lights to change. When we left the city behind us we found the two-lane highway heart stopping too. Cars and trucks struggled to pass each other on the busy highway.

The countryside provided a different perspective of life in India. We saw people working the fields and were impressed by the variety of agriculture that stretched to the horizon.

We spent a week at the boarding school and orphanage working alongside the staff and leading a children’s program with over 300 students participating. We shared Bible lessons, led recreation and engaged the students in making crafts and art projects.

We were impressed with the hard working staff and the enthusiastic students. Students were respectful and energetic. The school provided meals, housing and a rigorous education for the children. It was a week we will always remember.

Our host drove us back to the airport in Hyderabad where we caught a flight to Delhi in northern India. We couldn’t leave this beautiful country without seeing the Taj Mahal. This magnificent structure is located about two hours outside of Delhi. It is listed as one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

Several of our neighbors in Diamond Bar are from Indian descent. They are delightful people who are proud of their heritage. I love to tell them about our trip to India. It is a beautiful country with beautiful people. Let me encourage you to set your sights on visiting other parts of the world. Get outside the tourist centers and catch a glimpse of daily life in the country. And get to know your own neighbors who have come from other parts of the world. You will be glad you did and they will too!   

Read 365 more stories and articles (one for every day of the year) in the book Let me Encourage You by Mark Hopper. You can purchase two copies for only $30 plus postage ($5). Buy one for yourself and one to give a friend. Order your copies at mark@efreedb.org.

Healing Faith

By Pastor Dennis Morales

“Be of good cheer, daughter, your faith has made you well.” Matthew 9:22

As Jesus would pass through the region, people would crowd him to see Him, hear Him, or seek to be healed by Him.  His reputation preceded Him as a prophet and healer, but little did they know at the time that He was the Christ, who was prophesized about going back to Genesis 3:15.   As Jesus made his way through this particular city, and as crowds were pressing into Him, He says “who touched me?” (Luke 8:45).  One of His disciples says with exuberant confidence “Master everyone is touching you.”  Yes, obviously, many seemed to be touching Him, but Jesus said this was different.  He says, “I perceive power has gone out from Me.” (Luke 8:46).   Something was different about this person’s touch.  When Jesus asked the question “who touched Me,” the crowd dissipated a bit and all who was left was a woman on her knees trembling.   This woman reached out and touched the hem of Jesus’ garment and was healed instantly.   She “reached out” as a last resort after 12 years of seeking physicians and exhausting her every dime.   She was a woman most likely ostracized for her condition as she was considered “unclean.”  Ostracized from family, friends, and being able to worship at the temple.  Jesus then reaches out to her and speaks to her.  He calls her “daughter.”  Something that she needed and possibly longed to hear.  A term of endearment.  Having a stigma follow her for years, she had little contact with people.  He fulfilled her emotional need, but most importantly, He says to her, “your faith has made you well.”   Her greatest need was for a Savior.  Faith was necessary for her healing.  She, in the midst of years of disappointment, believed God could heal her.  Religion or a church cannot heal you, but if you reach out to Jesus and ask Him into your heart, He can touch you spiritually.  Believe He can transform you today.   

Calvary Chapel Eastvale meets at Eastvale Elementary located at 13031 Orange St, Eastvale.  Sundays 8:30/10:30am.  Livestream, YouTube Live, and Facebook Live is also available.  http://www.calvaryeastvale.org. 

Wash Your Car & Meet Your Neighbors

By Mark Hopper

I love the long summer evenings in Southern California. I love to get more things done after dinner with the extra daylight we enjoy in June and July. I was surprised the clock read 8:30 PM when I came into the house after washing my car.

An added bonus to the long summer evenings has been meeting more of my neighbors. There are a lot of men, women, and young adults walking past our house every evening. Many of them are doing laps around our block and come by several times. And many of them are walking with a spouse, children or exercise partner.

I like to pause what I am doing and say hello as people pass by. Some share encouraging comments on how nice my car looks. I like to return the compliment and tell them what a good job they are doing as they walk through our neighborhood.

Some people pause when I ask them their name or where they live. It has been challenging to learn new names and remember them the next time I see them. But I enjoy our brief conversations and I like getting to know my neighbors better.

There is a verse in the Bible that says, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and love your neighbor as yourself” (Luke 10:27). It is hard to love your neighbors if you don’t know your neighbors. One of the biggest obstacles to getting to know your neighbors is the garage door. People drive down the street, press the garage door opener, pull into their garage and close the door. It is pretty hard to get to know them when you can’t even speak to them.

Other obstacles include the back yard patio and the indoor air conditioning. It is interesting that older homes were built with a front porch. People would get out of their warm house on a summer evening and sit outside to enjoy a cool evening breeze. The front porch provided a natural setting to greet people walking by. It enabled neighbors to meet other neighbors.

Let me encourage you to get to know the neighbors who live around you. Why not wash your car during these long summer evenings and say hello to the people who walk by. Why not set up a lawn chair in your front yard instead of sitting in your air conditioned house or the back yard patio. You will be glad you did and your neighbors will too!

You can read 365 more stories (one for every day of the year)  in the book Let Me Encourage You. by Mark Hopper for only $25  (includes postage). Order your copy this week at markh@efreedb.org. Visit Mark’s website to read his latest stories at Letmarkencourageyou.com

Strength

By Pastor Dennis Morales

Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved. Psalm 55:12

We read of Daniel being a fearless follower of God (Daniel 2).  The Babylonians were trying to assimilate the young Jewish males in order to control them.  They knew the young men had strong religious ties, so the Babylonians sought to change the names of the young men, change their worship, and change their diet.  Daniel resisted the king’s delicacies, purposing in his heart not to defile himself and honor God.  Another occasion finds Daniel resisting mandated worship of the king and continued to pray to his God.  Scripture says that “when Daniel learned that the law had been signed, he went home and knelt down as usual in his upstairs room, with its windows open toward Jerusalem. He prayed three times a day, just as he had always done, giving thanks to his God” (Daniel 6:10).  As a result, Daniel eventually finds himself in the lion’s den, where God delivers him.  You can’t help but to notice a truth in this Biblical account of Daniel.   God delivers Daniel while in the lion’s den.  As we walk with the Lord, we can experience God delivering us from our troubles on occasion.   Many times, our prayers are requests for God to take us out of any given difficulty.  One of the things that may be hard to process is that sometimes God wants to deliver us while in the time of difficulty.  No doubt, the Lord was with Daniel in the lion’s den and God delivers him.   What gave Daniel the strength to stand against the enemy?  In Daniel 6:10, it says that Daniel “always prayed.”  He was accustomed to praying.  Daniel heard God often, and it would appear that Daniel drew strength from his prayers.  Do you need strength today?  You will find great strength in kneeling before the Lord (Philippians4:7).  Due to school closures, Calvary Chapel Eastvale is temporarily meeting in a “Drive In format” at American Heroes Park in Eastvale.  Livestream, YouTube Live, and Facebook Live are also available at 8:30am and 10:30am Sundays.  Starting Sunday JULY 11, Calvary Eastvale will be moving to a new location at Eastvale Elementary School.