The Sonshine posts by Pastor Walter Olsen

The Prodigal Son

The Sonshine   June 2022

The Prodigal Son  by Walter Olsen

Luke 15:1-24

Introduction

In reading the parable of the Prodigal Son recently, the Lord seemed to impress on me how much this message is needed in our world today. There are very many who are hurting because of poor choices made by the youth of today, hurting both the youth themselves and their parents. Thankfully, there is a way to bring comfort and restoration to those who are so hurting if they will acknowledge their rebellion and turn to the only One who can restore them and give them abundant life.

 

I think a consideration of the following observations may be helpful to those who are in the midst of such a problem. Consider the following applications from the illustration of the prodigal son.

 

Knowing Him

 

The Sonshine  May 2022    By Walter Olsen  

Knowing Him

Introduction

In many ways,  we are known by whom we know. I know that sounds kind of redundant, but I have a point. Knowing others is a significant part of our lives for many reasons. It may determine opportunity, a sense of special blessing, or any number of other things. It may be a source of pride also in declaring our special relationship to other significant people.

However, there is One whom it is crucial for us to know and that, of course, is the Lord Jesus Christ. To know Him is the greatest blessing of life and not to know Him is the greatest loss of life.

In this article, I would like for us to consider the various aspects of knowing Him, that is, the various claims of knowing Him. There is a very great difference between claiming to know Him and the reality of knowing Him. Jesus said to Phillip on one occasion, A...have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known Me, Phillip?@ (Jn. 14:9).  It was not that Phillip didn=t know who Jesus was, but perhaps that he didn=t know Him more intimately. He knew Him externally, kind of from a distance. It is the way many people know Jesus today. They are generally familiar with who He is as the Son of God, and even their Savior, but often there is little or no personal fellowship with Him.

 

Blessing Others

The Sonshine

April 2022 by Walter Olsen

Blessing Others

Introduction

When Jacob was about to separate from his uncle Laban he said to him, “The Lord has blessed you since my coming” (Gen. 30:30). This should be the testimony of every believer in his relationship to others. Others should be blessed because of our relationship to them.

 

Some of the ways others should be blessed by our presence among them would include the following:

 

They should be blessed with a witness of God’s presence in our life. They should see something of the love, joy, and peace in our lives as we walk daily with the Lord Jesus. Generally, people are encouraged by the love, joy and peace that they see in the lives of others. Jesus said, “Ye are the light of the world...Let your light so shine before men...” (Matt. 5:14, 16). Love, joy, and peace are really the fruit of the Spirit. No one can really produce such fruit in themselves, though there may be a limited  imitation of such. If it is not of God, it will be limited and lack in reality. The fruit that endures regarding love, joy, and peace is the fruit of the Spirit. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace...” (Gal. 5:22). It is the genuiness of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer that truly blesses others.

 

Turning Aside to See

The Sonshine    March 2022 

By Walter Olsen

 

Turning Aside to See

Introduction

Our attention is gained in many different ways as we live out our lives. Maybe it is a beautiful landscape such as the Rocky Mountains, or the birth of a baby, or the meeting of a special friend. Maybe it is by coming across an accident along the highway. Multitudes of things get our attention in this life. Some things are beautiful and much appreciated. Some are very sad and regretful. We must all deal with such incidents of life.

 

Have you ever thought about how God seeks to get our attention? In His grace, He works in all of our lives to get our attention so that we might  know Him, love Him, serve Him, and live for Him.

 

Preparation for the Future

Preparation for the Future by Walter Olsen

The Sonshine

January 2022

Preparation for the Future

Introduction

We prepare for many things in life. In many ways, we are what we are today because of previous preparations we have made. Of course, some fail to prepare much and so mostly stumble along the way. We prosper or fail to prosper because of the preparations we make or fail to make. This is true in every area of life.

In this paper, I would like to discuss some of the more significant spiritual preparations we either make or simply refuse to make. These are not decisions one makes without serious and eternal consequences.

Preparation for the Future

The Sonshine  by Walter Olsen,  January 2022

Preparation for the Future

Introduction

We prepare for many things in life. In many ways, we are what we are today because of previous preparations we have made. Of course, some fail to prepare much and so mostly stumble along the way. We prosper or fail to prosper because of the preparations we make or fail to make. This is true in every area of life.

 

In this paper, I would like to discuss some of the more significant spiritual preparations we either make or simply refuse to make. These are not decisions one makes without serious and eternal consequences.

 

Christmas Is:

The Sonshine,  December 2021   by  Walter Olsen

Christmas Is:

Introduction

Who doesn’t enjoy Christmas, especially as we think back to the days of our childhood. We anticipated it for many days, even months maybe. Of course, in many ways, we did not very well understand the real meaning of Christmas. We thought more about family, food, and presents! Certainly these things create many memorable memories. We can be thankful for them.

 

As we get older, however, we think more of the special meaning of Christmas. This is especially true if one has grown up in a Bible believing church where the truth of the Bible is taught. This article is a reminder of some of the very important things we should remember about Christmas, the birth of our Savior.

 

The birth of Jesus is a fulfillment of Biblical prophecy. What God says about the future is sure to come to pass. There is never any deviation  from what God has decreed to be. God’s Word, the Bible, is an expression of truth that can be counted on for total accuracy and fulfillment. That’s why His Word is a great comfort regarding our future.

 

Remembering His Benefits

The Sonshine by Walter Olsen

November 2021

Remembering His Benefits

We think of thanksgiving as a special time of the year to remember the great goodness of God for all His blessings in the previous year. That is a  wonderful idea and, as believers, we should be careful to do that. Further, as believers we should be conscious of the Lord’s blessing to us all the year through. We are urged in the Word of God to remember all the benefits we have in Him. “Bless the Lord, O my soul and forget not all His benefits” (Psa. 103:2). That is not a one time activity but a continuing frame of mind and heart. Sometimes it is easy to think of that, but so many things seem to get in the way! Daily keeping our hearts right with God will help us to rise above the challenges of the day and help us to have a continuing thankful heart. When our hearts are right with God, we can say with David, “Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless His holy name” (Psa. 103:1). For anyone to really thank and praise God, there must be a deep desire within his soul created by the presence of God in his life. Apart from that, our thanksgiving is relegated to a duty and is mostly short lived.

 

Truth to Live By

 The Sonshine    October 2021  by Walter Olsen

Introduction

If one is a believer in Jesus Christ and thus is truly saved, he seeks to live his life by the truth of God’s Word. The Bible is not just an interesting book to periodically read, but it is a book of life. The Bible contains truth needed to sustain one’s spiritual life in a healthy condition. It is a book that, through the ministry of the Holy Spirit, he will be able to maintain personal contact with God and also to bear spiritual fruit in his life. Jesus said, “Now ye are clean through the Word which I have spoken unto you. Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in Me” (Jn. 15:3-4).

 

In this article, I would like to call attention to some verses of Scripture that are especially significant to me. Of course, all of the Bible is significant because it is the Word of the living God. None of it can be neglected. Still, some verses are especially important for daily living. They give us special encouragement and comfort. Some of the veses I find especially helpful to me are the following.

 

A Plea For Forgiveness

The Sonshine

By Walter Olsen

 

A Plea For Forgiveness      September 2021

Introduction

The title, A Plea For Forgiveness, is taken from the heading of Psalm 51 in the King James Bible. I use it here because it adequately summarizes the truth of the chapter. Further, it speaks of the great need of humanity today.

 

Psalm 51 is King David’s plea to God after the acknowledgment of his  sin with Bathsheba. His sin brought shame and a sense of separation from God. Thankfully, he was able to reestablish his fellowship and walk with God.   This truth is so much needed today in the lives of all believers as we become convicted of our sins and see them for what they really are in the sight of God.

 

The purpose of this article is to walk through Psalm 51:1-7 and make some needed applications to our own lives including the following: