Sunday, December 24, 2017


A pinpoint of light isn’t much, but in a dark place it can shine brighter than day. We are God’s pinpoints of light, meant to light the way for others who abide in the darkness of their soul.

Eternal Perspectives              by Sally Bair

A friend recently had a vision that caused me to take note of God’s immensity. She saw, within her soul, a huge map of the world, so huge it covered her vision. The only light she saw came from a tiny dot, like a pinpoint, positioned directly on our prayer group and spanning from us to God in heaven.

In a heartbeat, I perceived God as viewing the entire world but pinpointing each one of us, as small and insignificant as we appeared. His light illuminates us so we can be   a reflection of Himself. The picture of God as light, in size, strength and power, is more than we can comprehend. When we see the enormous mountaintops compared to our Midwest flatlands, when we visualize the power of the sea against our little lakes, we get a glimpse of God’s power and light. And when we consider the light He sent to the Bethlehem manger, powerful enough to guide shepherds and magi, it can cause us to tremble before Him.

We seemingly insignificant beings need not fear, however. He promises to care for us and light our way through the dark influences of this world. “The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear?” (Psalm 27:1) As God looks down at His enormous creation, He considers us valuable enough to guide us through anything we face. 

Jesus is our main source of light. He calls Himself the light of the world. He also calls us to be reflections of His greater light. “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:14-16)

God has given all of His followers the job to reflect His light. As His pinpoint of light shines into our lives, we can reflect it into the world’s darkness.

Lord, thank You for shining Your light of love and salvation on us. By Your strength and power, help us follow Your command to reflect Your light outside ourselves so others will see You. In Jesus’ name, amen.       

Wednesday, December 20, 2017


I pray that all of us, especially me because I tend to be impetuous and always in a hurry, will journey with the Lord at HIS pace. His is always best, after all.

Eternal Perspectives          by Sally Bair

The journey

My family’s 3,500-mile journey to Alaska in 2005 took us four days. Six of us crowded in a pickup camper, determined to travel on a prayer and a shoestring. The destination, that of visiting my son, kept us from getting too road weary. In fact, my four-year-old granddaughter hardly ever said, “Are we there yet?”

Once we arrived, my son and his family treated us like royalty. We fished and enjoyed a bounteous variety of fresh Alaskan wildlife. The long daylight hours brought opportunities to enjoy the family and the surroundings.

Mary and Joseph’s trip to Bethlehem was long, too. From Nazareth they traveled probably by donkey about one-hundred miles. Like us, the trip might have taken four days. And much of the trip likely had to be taken during the darkness of short winter days. How tired Mary must have been! Perhaps she kept wondering, “Are we there yet?” Once they arrived, unlike us, they were not treated as royalty—until the shepherds came to worship Mary’s newborn, the Messiah, and the wise men traveled from the east to pay Him homage with extravagant gifts.

Like the shepherds and wise men, we can follow the star of God’s Word that will guide us to Jesus, God’s Son, no matter where we are or what we face in life. Like Mary, the journey we face may be difficult and long and dark. But by accepting God’s Son as our Lord and Savior, by His grace through repentance and faith we can look forward to reaching our promised destination of eternity with Him now and forever.

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. …In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.” (John 1:1-5)

Lord, thank You for guiding us on our life’s journey through every dark obstacle we face. Fill us with Your light and love, Your joy and peace as we focus on Your Word and grow into the people You want us to be. In Jesus’ name and for His glory, amen.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017


Our hearts can be filled with music year-round as we contemplate and rejoice in the birth, death, and resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ. May yours be filled this season of love and hope.

Eternal Perspectives   by Sally Bair

Ever since I attended a youth symphony concert as a sixth-grader, I’ve considered classical music one of my favorite forms. I especially enjoy the old compositions, including The Messiah, my all-time favorite.

George Frideric Handel composed his famous work following a series of adversities. He suffered a stroke which rendered him unable to play an instrument because of a paralyzed right arm. The stroke also left him with blurred vision. Over several years he fell in and out of favor with English royalty. In debt and depressed, he came across a piece of music composed entirely of Scripture portions, mostly Old Testament.

It affected so him deeply that it inspired him to create the oratorio, The Messiah. Its  three-part composition includes prophecies of the coming Messiah, taken mainly from the book of Isaiah; the birth, life, ministry, death and resurrection of Christ; and the end times with Christ’s final victory over sin and death as told in John the Apostle’s book of Revelation.

In 1741 as Handel wrote his piece, he is said to have been in tears as he composed the final Hallelujah Chorus, stating “I did think I saw heaven open and saw the very face of God.”

Such is the power of God-inspired music. As we listen to The Messiah and other great
music about the Lord, we can envision angels singing along with the choirs. And the best
part is that we can join in. The Psalms are full of references to singing and playing music to God
with our voices and various instruments. Paul tells us to “… be filled with the Spirit,
speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in
your heart to the Lord …” (Ephesians 5:19)

Our melody to our Savior must come from the heart, the center of our being, the deepest part of our existence. Rather than allowing our hearts to be anxious, fearful or bitter, may they make music of praise and thanksgiving, love and worship. The Christmas bells of joy from our hearts can ring out to reach every person around us, like ripples of sound waves.

Lord, thank You for making us an instrument of praise to You. As we worship You and meditate on the wonder-filled Word about Jesus’ birth, may we exude music that will glorify You, giving You and others joy. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017


Eternal perspectives   by Sally Bair

‘Tis the season to give

Nowadays the opportunities to give toward a worthy cause seem endless. We can drop coins in the Salvation Army buckets, send money to a non-profit that gives goats to poor people in Nigeria or help clothe an orphan in Mexico. Surrounded by so many needs, we may find it hard to choose. But once we choose, we often feel better for our giving.

Research shows, in fact, that giving to someone in need releases oxytocin, a chemical in our brain that causes us to feel warmth toward others. And once our body produces more oxytocin by our compassionate act of giving, it spurs us to give even more, which produces more … you get the picture of the cumulative effect of giving.

We feel joy when we offer our money, time or talents for the benefit of those less fortunate. The very act of giving can change our mood from grumpy or sadness into a big smile. Giving also can fight loneliness by connecting us with others. And, of course, cheerful giving benefits us spiritually.

Giving is a godly act of sacrifice. The Bible has plenty to say about it being a discipline as well as a spiritual benefit. “He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity, for God loves a cheerful giver.” (2 Corinthians 9:6-7)

The author, Paul, is telling us that giving is like sowing seed, with the amount of the harvest determined by the amount of the seed sown. When we give, God is able to give us more so we can keep giving even more. He is generous in providing us with our own needs when we give others what they need.

God’s generosity knows no bounds. It began with Creation and has continued throughout the ages. We see it especially in the gift of His Son, Jesus. During this holy season, we do well to spend time meditating not only on His miraculous birth, but on His ultimate sacrifice on the cross for our sins. We find it hard to imagine such a gift!

We have the special privilege and calling to give out of the abundance of our hearts. Just as Jesus did and still does.

Lord, thank You for Your unending generosity. May we never take it for granted. May we, instead, follow Your example with open hearts, especially during the season of Jesus’ birth. In His name we pray, amen.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017


Honor and hats off to the thousands of rescuers: the EMTs, firefighters, military including U.S. Coast Guard, doctors and nurses, and more. And the most honor to our Lord, Jesus Christ, the ultimate rescuer for those who trust in and obey Him. Are you one of them?


Rescue Missions

Many of you know how, in December 1996, my son and four other professional fishermen were rescued while on the way home from a fishing trip in the Bering Sea. Williwaws (violent gusts of wind) came over the mountains of the Alaska Peninsula at nearly 100 mph, slamming into the sea and into their boat. My son and the other crew members tried frantically to chip fast-building ice from the boat so it wouldn’t become top heavy and capsize. But their efforts proved futile. They donned their survival suits and sent an emergency message to the U.S. Coast Guard before jumping off the 72-foot boat into a tiny life raft. They followed all the rules of survival at sea.

Huddling in the cold, wet, tossing raft, they waited until finally a Coast Guard helicopter crew arrived from the Kodiak station. The pilot lowered a swimmer to rescue the men, one at a time, while he kept the ‘copter hovering about 400 feet above the sea. None were lost in spite of the terrible sea conditions, the ‘copter running low on fuel, its windshield unable to remain clear of freezing salt water spray, and the rescue swimmer’s depleting energy.

We hear of rescues every day. Emergency crews rescue men trapped from auto accidents. First responders and some concerned citizens keep children from harm, rescue victims held at gunpoint and carry people from burning buildings. Environmental groups prevent forests from being clear cut, save rivers from pollution and clean up toxic areas.

But the ultimate rescuer is God. His greatest rescue came in the form of His Son, Jesus Christ, sent to save the world from sin and give us peace with God. “Having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ …”  (Romans 5:1)  We don’t deserve entry into heaven because we’re born in sin. But God in His love has rescued us.

Just as my son and the fishing crew couldn’t rescue themselves from their sinking ship, we cannot rescue ourselves from sin simply by trying to follow rules and commandments. Only by turning away from sin and, in faith, embracing the truth of Jesus’ death on the cross and His bodily resurrection from the dead, can we have any hope of rescue. He is our ultimate rescuer.

Lord, thank You for rescuing us from sin through Your Son, Jesus. Thank You for the hope of eternal life, for peace, for joy and for righteousness. In Jesus’ name, amen.