Proverbs 22:3

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Rich and poor have this in common:
    The Lord is the Maker of them all. - Proverbs 22:3

Dear Lord,

All people are equal in your eyes.  The are equally special and wonderful for you to behold because you made them just the way you wanted and put them in their time and place.  You also love them all the same.  Your Son was the high price you paid for each one.  In heaven there will be no earthly distinctions such as rich or poor.  Instead, we will all be seen as the precious gems that you have made us.  Give me your divine acceptance of all people so everyone feels their worth when they deal with me in whatever moment we find ourselves, whether stressful or calm, whether fun or serious, whether good or bad.  Make me a gracious lover of people so they feel your grace coming through me.   

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

All people are worth being loved with unconditional acceptance.  

Revelation 9:13-16

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The sixth angel sounded his trumpet, and I heard a voice coming from the four horns of the golden altar that is before God. 14 It said to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, “Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates.” 15 And the four angels who had been kept ready for this very hour and day and month and year were released to kill a third of mankind. 16 The number of the mounted troops was twice ten thousand times ten thousand. I heard their number. - Revelation 9:13-16

Dear Lord,

My dear friends who have watched the news lately sat with me over lunch and decried the terrible things going on in my country and all over the world. It seems that you let things spin out of control. But you don't. You moderate the the evil that Satan rages to wreak on the earth. You are not responsible for evil but you will not rid the earth of all evil until the end. I know, I know. You want us to preach the gospel to all those whom you give the wake up call too. Lord, help us, your church to stay focused on relieving suffering through the hope of Christ as you allow the devil to torment people. Beat him at his own game by using the sorrows he creates to drive people into our churches and your arms.

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

These are the worst of times and best of times at the same moment.

Revelation 9:1-6

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The fifth angel sounded his trumpet, and I saw a star that had fallen from the sky to the earth. The star was given the key to the shaft of the Abyss. When he opened the Abyss, smoke rose from it like the smoke from a gigantic furnace. The sun and sky were darkened by the smoke from the Abyss. And out of the smoke locusts came down on the earth and were given power like that of scorpions of the earth. They were told not to harm the grass of the earth or any plant or tree, but only those people who did not have the seal of God on their foreheads. They were not allowed to kill them but only to torture them for five months.And the agony they suffered was like that of the sting of a scorpion when it strikes. During those days people will seek death but will not find it; they will long to die, but death will elude them. - Revelation 9:1-6

Dear Jesus,

How will we ever know for sure what you were picturing for us in the locusts coming up out of the abyss of hell to torment the earth? Many people think the are false teachers led by Satan and his demons. They lead the church astray and they lead governmental leaders to do terrible things to your true saints. The five months represent the era of chaos in which we live until the end. I know many people are enduring terrible lives. Thank you that you have given us a living hope of eternal escape from this rough time. We will learn to wait patiently for your return even though the going get's tough. Honor yourself in our lives no matter what we go through.

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

The best part about the difficulties that we endure is that we will outlive them for sure.

1 John 4:11-12

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Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. - 1 John 4:11-12

Dear Heavenly Father,

I haven't seen you. And here John admits that he hadn't seen you either. But he had experienced pure love through your Son. We have experienced that unconditional love too. You have empowered me to love people who have been difficult to love. I have been loved even when I was difficult to love. It's a spiritual awakening to live in unconditional love for others. You are living in us and are making us like you. Today, I hope to love the people close to me without criticizing them. Give me words of encouragement for them and make me stop myself from complaining about them in my heart. And about that person that gets on my nerves, well, help me not have a nerve for them to step on. I want to be the love you have been for us.

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

Loving someone hard to love helps them feel the gospel not just hear it.

Proverbs 19: 17

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Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord,
and he will reward them for what they have done. Proverbs 19: 17

Dear Lord,

The whole world is yours an all who live in it. You watch over every person, rich and poor. You love to see me share with those who need it. Make me an outward person who fills the bucket in other people's hearts with good things. When I give to them, I'm giving to you. And since you have given your only Son for me I am forever in your debt. Take my life and let it be an offering consecrated to thee.

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

To give without regret is a great gift from God.

Revelation 8:13

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As I watched, I heard an eagle that was flying in midair call out in a loud voice: “Woe! Woe! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth, because of the trumpet blasts about to be sounded by the other three angels!” - Revelation 8:13

Dear Jesus,

Your vision to John provokes anxiety in my heart. It shows me an eagle flying around shouting that although you have already prophesied calamities on the earth that even more and more are to come. It's like there is nowhere to hide from your judgement on a broken human race. But I know you are the redeemer who has already forgiven us. Be merciful to us your children as you frustrate the idolatry we have for created things. And as you take away our little kingdoms please draw near to us and bless us with your kingdom of grace and peace. Help us to rest in the quiet of your promises and to wait through the hard times for the rising Sun of that last great day when all trouble will be over. Give me the knot in your rope to hold onto!

Pastor Don Patterson

Hang on to God's promises even when he allows the fiercest storms and he will pull you through.

Revelation 8:6-12

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Then the seven angels who had the seven trumpets prepared to sound them.

7 The first angel sounded his trumpet, and there came hail and fire mixed with blood, and it was hurled down on the earth. A third of the earth was burned up, a third of the trees were burned up, and all the green grass was burned up.

8 The second angel sounded his trumpet, and something like a huge mountain, all ablaze, was thrown into the sea. A third of the sea turned into blood, 9 a third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed.

10 The third angel sounded his trumpet, and a great star, blazing like a torch, fell from the sky on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water— 11 the name of the star is Wormwood. A third of the waters turned bitter, and many people died from the waters that had become bitter.

12 The fourth angel sounded his trumpet, and a third of the sun was struck, a third of the moon, and a third of the stars, so that a third of them turned dark. A third of the day was without light, and also a third of the night. - Revelation 8:6-12

Dear Jesus,

You showed John through these visions of angels sounding trumpets that you control all the forces of nature and the entire planetary system. You have consigned this universe to decay since our first parents fell into sin. For the rest of our lives and into eternity we will see natural disasters. Snow and ice storms, tsunamis, hurricanes, earthquakes, fires and so much more will keep coming. We can expect for you to touch our planet with trouble in order to call some people home and to cause the rest to reach out to you in prayer. You are God and you will have your way with your planets. I'm so thankful that you came to this planet and saved us so we can be sure we will survive every calamity even if you use one to call us out. We are safe in grace. Help us to tell more people about you before their expiration date arrives.

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

We're just passing through so don't get too bogged down by collecting things you have to leave to others.

Revelation 8:1-5

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When he opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour.

2 And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and seven trumpets were given to them.

3 Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all God’s people,on the golden altar in front of the throne. 4 The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of God’s people, went up before God from the angel’s hand. 5 Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and hurled it on the earth; and there came peals of thunder,rumblings, flashes of lightning and an earthquake. - Revelation 8:1-5


Dear Jesus,

I'm comforted by this vision where your angels bring all the prayers of your people to your throne.  It assures me that every single one of my prayers is heard by you.  You don't miss a thing.  It's so easy to think my prayers don't make it past the ceiling of my home because I don't yet see you or hear your voice.  But your word reminds me that you and all your angels are studying my prayers along with those of all other Christians.  By grace you listen to us like a loving parent listens to the slightest coo of her newborn.  I see too in this vision that although you hear my prayer and plan to rescue me, I might have to go through more trouble before I get there.  Your angel hurled the sensor to the earth and ushered in more announcements for earthly tribulation.  Give me patience Lord to not grow weary in my prayers or to become unbelieving about your attentiveness as earthly trouble marches on.  Help me to be a light of hope for those around me as we wait for our deliverance.  Give me friends who pray to you also and who will encourage me from the heart.  Be our God and Savior as sojourn here.  

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson 

God hears your heart beat, how much more, then, your prayers!

Revelation 7:13-17

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 Then one of the elders around the throne in the vision asked me, “These in white robes—who are they, and where did they come from?”  14 I answered, “Sir, you know.”  And he said, “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15 Therefore,

“they are before the throne of God
    and serve him day and night in his temple;
and he who sits on the throne
    will shelter them with his presence.
16 ‘Never again will they hunger;
    never again will they thirst.
The sun will not beat down on them,’
    nor any scorching heat.
17 For the Lamb at the center of the throne
    will be their shepherd;
‘he will lead them to springs of living water.’
    ‘And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.’” —-
Revelation 7:13-17

Dear Jesus,

What a powerful and peaceful scene you give us of heaven.  You remind us that this life is "The Great Tribulation." and that the oasis of solitude where death and trouble will never harm us again is in heaven with you.  You show us that our reason for getting there is your righteousness that covers our lives like a beautiful white robe.  You eliminate the doubts we have that you would ever receive us.  You comfort us with the promise that you will wipe our tears away and replace them with smiles and gladness. I am comforted even now when I remember the suffering of my parents toward the end of their lives.  They are now in your tent and the beast of suffering that wiped them out will never touch them again. In my most difficult days on earth to come, please bring this scene to mind. Use it to hold me up in faith and to make me triumph in love to those around me instead of sink into self indulging self pity.  Make me a champion of hope for myself and others. 

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

Be comforted!  God knows where he's taking us through this jungle of sorrow.   

Revelation 6:9-11

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When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God and the testimony they had maintained. They called out in a loud voice, “How long, Sovereign Lord, holy and true, until you judge the inhabitants of the earth and avenge our blood?” Then each of them was given a white robe, and they were told to wait a little longer, until the full number of their fellow servants, their brothers and sisters, were killed just as they had been. - Revelation 6:9-11

Dear Jesus,

I avoid horror movies so I won't have their sad or gruesome picture plaguing my mind. Then you put in Scripture a picture like this of people who died for you and your gospel crying out for justice. I cannot get the picture out of my mind. You hear the prayer of every one of your children who suffer injustice or abuse. But you still make us wait until all your people are gathered to heaven. It's the waiting through tragedy that's so painful. It tests our faith in your goodness. But the white robe you give us to wear in your righteousness comforts us. We are given Christ who righted every wrong on the cross to wear over our pain torn lives. Give me the power to cling to your gift of salvation in Christ while I wait through this veil of tears for our rescue. And help my Christian brothers who are suffering terrible persecution to hang on in faith that you will rescue them and all believers when the last Christian gets put on the ship to heaven.

AMEN

Pastor Don Patterson

God gives his people the power to wait with him for his gracious plan to reach it's fulfillment.


Revelation 6:7-8

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When the Lamb opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, “Come!” 8 I looked, and there before me was a pale horse! Its rider was named Death, and Hades was following close behind him. They were given power over a fourth of the earth to kill by sword, famine and plague, and by the wild beasts of the earth. - Revelation 6:7-8

Dear Lord Jesus,

It's a horrible reality but it's true.  Until the day you return there will be famine and plagues that kill people.  You pin the entire planet to the mat and make us look up for the answers.   Your answers have to do with rescue and not restoration of the earth.  You came and died so that death could be the doorway to heaven.  That alone gives us peace in the face of famine and plague.  This ain't heaven and it never will be.  Your word seals the deal.  So, I will evermore put my hope in the perfect redemption you have won for me.  Thank you for getting me out of here alive, forever.  I will live in this hope and do my best to share it with others.  

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

Death will prowl the earth until the end of time but because of Jesus it will lose it's grip on all believers.  

Revelation 6:5-6

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When the Lamb opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, “Come!” I looked, and there before me was a black horse! Its rider was holding a pair of scales in his hand. Then I heard what sounded like a voice among the four living creatures, saying, “Two pounds of wheat for a day’s wages, and six pounds of barley for a day’s wages, and do not damage the oil and the wine!”  - Revelation 6:5-6

Dear Jesus,

Here in your word you promise that there will be run away inflation at different places on the earth throughout the ages and until the end of time. Some places on earth right now even food prices are rising astronomically.   I know that in my country we haven't experienced inflation near as much as others.  And yet when prices spike we chaff under the load.  It makes us feel hopeless and worried.  You use inflation to frustrate our lust for temporal wealth and to make us learn to depend on you for everything.  How powerfully you bring us back home in concrete ways.  Lord, take care of our needs and preserve us through our hard times.  Give us what we need to get through it all and make us generous toward those who are experiencing your chastening through inflation so they will find your love coming from our hands.  

AMEN

Pastor Don Patterson 

The price for grace never goes up or down.  It's free for us but cost God everything.  

Revelation 6:3-4

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When the Lamb opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, “Come!” 4 Then another horse came out, a fiery red one.Its rider was given power to take peace from the earth and to make people kill each other. To him was given a large sword. - Revelation 6:3-4

Dear Jesus, 

The rider on the fiery red horse brings a hard message.  You are showing us that as long as we live this side of heaven, earth will be a violent place.  People will be killing other people off and on until the end of time.  You want us to know that this place will never be heaven.  It will always be a war zone.  It makes me long for you and the eternal peace and protection you will give us in heaven.  I know you are with us now and protect us with your angels throughout our lives but you also use the chaos here to bring us to glory.  I will live a life of honesty and love while staying around murderous people.  I will not kid myself that somehow earth will become a place where there are no threats.  Stay near me Lord Jesus and help me Lord Jesus and protect me from the dangers that lurk around me. 

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

We walk with God all day through dangers toward the peaceful fortress called heaven.  

Revelation 6:1-2

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I watched as the Lamb opened the first of the seven seals. Then I heard one of the four living creatures say in a voice like thunder,“Come!”  I looked, and there before me was a white horse! Its rider held a bow, and he was given a crown, and he rode out as a conqueror bent on conquest. - Revelation 6:1-2

Dear Jesus,

Horses have always been the symbol of war and conquest.  I see in this first seal that opens and reveals insights about future events - that while this world is at war spiritually, you and your word and your people are in the battle to conquer with the truth about your grace that leads many to righteousness.  We are in a battle but we have your weapons.  Souls are being saved and many who look defeated (like the thief who died next to you/ will be saved by the white horse at the very end.   You are telling us that you and the good you bring will be with us in battle until the end.  With your ever present help, we will fight on until your angel blows the trumpet for the end to come.  It give us hope that helps us keep telling your story.  Harden us in our resolve to saddle up and spread the word. 

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

We live in a war zone between God and Satan.  By grace we have been adopted to the right team. 

Revelation 5:7-10

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The Lamb had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits[a] of God sent out into all the earth. 7 He went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who sat on the throne. 8 And when he had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of God’s people. 9 And they sang a new song, saying:

“You are worthy to take the scroll
    and to open its seals,
because you were slain,
    and with your blood you purchased for God
    persons from every tribe and language and people and nation.
10 You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God,
    and they will reign[
b] on the earth.” - Revelation 5:7-10

Dear Jesus, 

Your worthiness to hold our future in your hands is because those hands are scared for us. You died for us to wash away our sins and give us the identity as kings and priests. We have value and heavenly purpose because you singlehandedly saved us all. Help me to live for my divine purpose from you no matter what challenges come my way today. Make me reflect love and truth to all whom I meet today. 

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson 

On Christ’s team everyone gets to play. 


Revelation 5:1-5

Then I saw in the right hand of him who sat on the throne a scroll with writing on both sides and sealed with seven seals.  And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming in a loud voice, “Who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll?”  But no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth could open the scroll or even look inside it. I wept and wept because no one was found who was worthy to open the scroll or look inside. Then one of the elders said to me, “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals." - Revelation 5:1-5

Dear Jesus,

I wonder how many people realize that what you showed John in this vision is that only you have the right to see and tell the future.  No palm reader, pendant, witch or warlock has that power or insight.  No angel or demon, not false god or political self absorbed personality.  Only you, the lion of the tribe of Judah, who was born of a real woman and yet is God himself, knows the future along with the Father and Holy Spirit and chooses to tell it.  So, since you hold back so much detail so I will focus on the gospel themes about the future, I accept your comfort that you are with me and that you will unroll the scroll of my life before my eyes as you see fit.  I am your Lord Jesus, drive my life into the future you have for me.

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

The father who sits on the throne in heaven has given only Jesus the right to run things for him.  So, don't try to run things yourself.  

Revelation 4:7-11

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In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back. The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying: “‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty,’ who was, and is, and is to come.”

Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever, the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say: “You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.” - Revelation 4:7-11

Dear Jesus,

What a grand picture in heaven that shows that all creation and the church in heaven completely realize that you are worthy of praise and glory for your holiness and power. You created all things. In Romans 1, you tell us that your creation on earth shows your divine power and attributes. Here in this vision, your creation in heaven proclaims the same. All this makes me live in greater awe of your right to govern our lives and to judge them in the end. We are all a product of your mind and hand. Give me holy respect for your creative ownership of me and everything else around me. I know that you will judge all creatures at the end of their lives and if you had not come to save, I would be doomed. Because of your grace I can love and respect the beautiful natural world because I know that the awesome mind that invented it all, also invented redeeming grace for those of us who have fallen from your image. Oh Jesus, you are worthy of all the praise you exploit in heaven.

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

Everyone in heaven gets how wonderful Jesus is. Pray those on earth do too before it's too late for them.

Revelation 4:2-6

At once I was in the Spirit, and there before me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on it.  And the one who sat there had the appearance of jasper and ruby. A rainbow that shone like an emerald encircled the throne. Surrounding the throne were twenty-four other thrones, and seated on them were twenty-four elders. They were dressed in white and had crowns of gold on their heads. From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder. In front of the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the sevenfold Spirit of God. Also in front of the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal. - Revelation 4:2-6

Dear Jesus,

Thank you for giving us visions of heaven that symbolize the glory and grandeur you, the Father and the Holy Spirit have.  I see that all believers are represented by the twenty four elders in the vision, twelve for the Old Testament believers and twelve for the New.  All of creation is represented in the four living creatures and the Holy Spirit is pictured as seven lamp-stands and the seven fold spirit. The beauty and power that surround you in heaven is thought provoking.  It reminds me that you are far above all earthly rule and authority and you dwell in immeasurable splendor.  To think that you left all that to be slain for my soul's rescue!  Thank you for denying yourself all that splendor to welcome a poor soul like me to join you there.  Help me do everything I can to give other people the same gift you have given me.  And help me live in optimism today because by grace I will someday be there in the vision with you no matter how many dark alleys I must traverse to get there.  

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson

Words cannot describe the full glory where God dwells.  In fact, they barely describe the magnitude of his love that made him leave heaven to save us.  


Revelation‬ ‭4:1

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After this I looked, and there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And the voice I had first heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.” - Revelation‬ ‭4:1

Dear Jesus,

From heaven you know everything that is going to happen in all of our lives. You see the struggles, the successes, the failures and the dreams come true. You see the good, the bad and ugly. You see the injustices we experience and the blessings. We see none of those. We have to take them as they come. Give us peace about not knowing how our lives will go. Help us to focus instead on faithfully using our gifts to bless others. Since I know you will be with me in the future, I can more easily take what comes. I will be okay with you being my leader. 

Amen

God knows our future. Our job is to know God. 

Revelation 3:14-22

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To the angel of the church in Laodicea write:

These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God’s creation. 15 I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! 16 So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth. 17 You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. 18 I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see.

19 Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent. 20 Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.

21 To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat down with my Father on his throne. 22 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” - Revelation 3:14-22

Dear Jesus,

I have always felt that your church in America is most like the church in Laodicea.  We live in peace and luxury.  You have protected us from persecution that your people in other parts of the world experience.  And we have reasoned that we are rich and need little.  But we are just as much in need as anyone and everyone else.  We fall prey to sin and we barely know how to suffer.  And death spares no one.  Please do not reject your complacent believers but fill us with your Holy Spirit who will make us serious and honest believers who value your grace, salvation and fellowship with you, more than the temporal blessings you have showered on us.  Make us trust in you like Job who could not be bought and would not forsake you even though you let all his wealth, family and health drift away.  Make us wealthy in true faith so we honor you before the old evil foe who wants to ruin us with our wealth. 

Amen

Pastor Don Patterson 

God wants us to value Jesus as much as he values us.