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“Take Courage” is our sermon series.  It also means to “be of good cheer.”  We all realize, with this pandemic, that many things have changed.  Some industries are straining to meet demand, others are being pushed to the brink of collapse.  Some treatment methods for the COVID-19, which seemed promising, are not offering the benefits that everyone had hoped.  Our government is having to make decisions on a constantly changing environment.  Jobs, livelihoods, even human lives hang in the balance as we confront the future.  What will we trust as we move out of isolation and into a social world? Masks? Hand sanitizer? The news?  This question haunts us.  What can we trust?  One of our national motto’s is, “In God We Trust.”  This motto has never been any truer than today!  In the sermon, “God’s Promise,” we turn to Zephaniah 3:12-20 where God’s people are told to “take courage,” because the Lord God was with them, a Mighty Warrior, to save them!  Even though God had been disgusted with the deceitful actions of his people and their willingness to mistreat each other, God was determined to be faithful to his promise to them.  Perhaps, this is the only thing we can trust, God’s promise! How can we cling to God’s promise in the middle of this pandemic?  Zephaniah gives us some solid advice amid the uncertainty that is all around us.  As you read Zephaniah 3:12-20, may you be filled with the power and presence of God’s joy over you!  Zephaniah 3:12-20 But I will leave within you the meek and humble. The remnant of Israel will trust in the name of the LORD. 13 They will do no wrong; they will tell no lies. A deceitful tongue will not be found in their mouths. They will eat and lie down and no one will make them afraid.” 14 Sing, Daughter Zion; shout aloud, Israel! Be glad and rejoice with all your heart, Daughter Jerusalem! 15 The LORD has taken away your punishment, he has turned back your enemy. The LORD, the King of Israel, is with you; never again will you fear any harm. 16 On that day they will say to Jerusalem, “Do not fear, Zion; do not let your hands hang limp. 17 The LORD your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.” 18 “I will remove from you all who mourn over the loss of your appointed festivals, which is a burden and reproach for you. 19 At that time I will deal with all who oppressed you. I will rescue the lame; I will gather the exiles. I will give them praise and honor in every land where they have suffered shame. 20 At that time I will gather you; at that time I will bring you home. I will give you honor and praise among all the peoples of the earth when I restore your fortunes before your very eyes,” says the LORD.  (NIV)