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Pastor's Corner

Short stories with spiritual principles from the life experiences of Pastor Mark

The Law of What?

by Pastor Mark Fisher

July 11, 2017

Man, I had it all in control or at least I felt like I did. You know the feeling; young, strong, free and independent with not a real care in the world. Anyway, it was my excuse for the heavy foot on the gas pedal of my sporty Fiat. Well, that was the pleasant feeling I had until I saw the Sheriff approaching me in the oncoming lane. My feelings were about to change, and quite quickly.

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My Mother

by Pastor Mark Fisher

May 23, 2017

With April showers came the May flowers; and just in time for Mother’s Day! As a child I always looked forward to the beautiful colorful springtime. Living in the North meant white winters and showery springs, with May being the month of colorful tapestry. I could easily see why Mother’s Day was celebrated at this time of year.

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Manhood or Madness?

by Pastor Mark Fisher

March 21, 2017

Was it really a test of manhood? Was it simply madness? Was it the result of months of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) otherwise known as Cabin Fever? As a teen I knew it was manhood related.

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Running Wild

by Pastor Mark Fisher

March 7, 2017

We loved it when rookies came on board our crew, especially those who had never been in the backwoods. As for our latest crew member who was from the inner city? He had never been in any type of forest at all. Man, we were going to have some fun!

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It Really Was SAD!

by Pastor Mark Fisher

February 14, 2017

February! Three months down and another long three to go. SADness had set in; SAD being the abbreviated form of what the pros call Seasonal Affective Disorder, or what the rest of us call Cabin Fever. Yes, growing up in the north with over six months of winter took its toll.

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Pulling or Letting Go?

by Pastor Mark Fisher

February 7, 2017

Startling! Never in my life had I felt such a massive fish on my line. It hit my bait with a vengeance. I was even struggling to bring this record fish near the ice hole. Pulling and ripping, the fight was on!

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My Vow, His Promise?

by Pastor Mark Fisher

January 26, 2017

Here I go again! I thought I had it under control, and guess what? I was wrong. My dad had challenged me regarding my struggle with alcohol and my vow to stop drinking had lasted only a few days.

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Enlightened

by Pastor Mark Fisher

December 6, 2016

Never before had the words made any sense; for the first time in my life I actually understood the words of this most beautiful Christmas carol.

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Big Brothers

by Pastor Mark Fisher

November 15, 2016

My big brother was a beast, or at least I thought so when I was a boy. He was six years older and six times bigger than me! And unfortunately, I was his favorite guinea pig! He was also very devoted to experimentation; he would lay awake developing new methods of torment. Well maybe not, but to a ten year old runt it sure seemed like it. 

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A Close Call

by Pastor Mark Fisher

November 10, 2016

It was the perfect morning for duck hunting, cold and cloudy with ice forming on the lakes. We had been anticipating this hunt for days. Our destination was a remote lake in a wilderness area of northern Minnesota which seldom saw hunters; and being late October meant that the Canadian born ducks would be flying south at this very time.

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Pesky Parasites

by Pastor Mark Fisher

October 27, 2016

Sorry folks, northern Minnesota beats western Colorado hands down when it comes to parasites; both in quantity and variety. Besides the dreaded mosquito, there are sand flies, deer flies, horse flies, black flies, deer ticks, wood ticks, no-see-ums and other nameless creatures! Also, the lakes are blood sucker (leech) hatcheries. And they have one thing in common; they all want your blood to keep their species from becoming extinct. As far as I know there are no "save the parasites" action groups, so they must be holding their own. Enough bragging...

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Human Suffering Overcome by God's Salvation

by Pastor Mark Fisher

October 20, 2016

This August trip to Minnesota was different; it was his last. The 25 year old man was dying of AIDS. Outwardly, he was weak and thin, weighing only ninety pounds, with his physical life quickly ebbing away. Internally, he was grappling with the concepts of life, death and eternity.

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Just In Time

by Pastor Mark Fisher

October 3, 2016

A letter had been written. A decision had been made for the young man who had no hope.

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The Call for Help - Part 2

by Pastor Mark Fisher

September 20, 2016

The dilemma was unmistakable! I had no idea which way to go and to make it worse, my parents had no idea that I was lost. For an eight-year-old boy that is a bit of a problem. 

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The Call for Help - Part 1

by Pastor Mark Fisher

September 15, 2016

Summer was blissful in northern Minnesota, for it was the time of the year that you could in some way enjoy the outdoors. You could fish to your heart’s content, boat and canoe, swat mosquitoes all day long and actually swim in the lakes instead of driving on them. But it also meant camping, and even better yet, camping in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCA) near our home. We often went fishing or camping in the BWCA for it had large lakes, great fishing and few people.

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Unforgettable

by Pastor Mark Fisher

September 8, 2016

The rain was coming down in sheets, the thunder was rolling and we were stuck in a mud hole in the bush of eastern Uganda. But it was unforgettable!

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Ill Prepared

by Pastor Mark Fisher

August 18, 2016

With the snow melting and the ice leaving the lakes, springtime in northern Minnesota was psychologically welcomed. (The long winters can cause psychosis in some.) I could hardly wait to go fishing. And so it was, a quickly planned overnight hike to a backwoods trout lake with 3 young teens (I talked them into it). Plus the weather appeared unusually warm for this time of year.

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Terror By Night

by Pastor Mark Fisher

July 28, 2016

I was not a happy camper! It was a cold winter’s night in northern Minnesota; I was 15 years old and at the mercy of others regarding transportation. The dilemma was we lived 5 miles from the nearest form of civilization, the old rough-edged community of Winton.

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His Burdens Were Lifted

by Pastor Mark Fisher

July 21, 2016

It was part of my job as an inspector; I was enduring another Minnesota construction certification course. Being held in another county, it was another not so fun week away from home.

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How Forgetful I Am

by Pastor Mark Fisher

July 14, 2016

I normally love fishing, but at this point I never cared to fish again. Besides horrendous motion sickness, time was in slow motion. I now had 3 hours, 45 minutes and 10 seconds left before docking! I was miserable!

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God's Deliverance - Part 2

by Pastor Mark Fisher

July 6, 2016

Yes, my brother and I made it home after extensively exploring (we were lost) the wilderness area north of our lake home. We were cold, wet, hungry and tired. But it was nothing compared to the Christmas Eve that was to follow two years later.

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God's Deliverance - Part 1

by Pastor Mark Fisher

June 29, 2016

My brother claimed he knew where we were going, so he thought. We had been wandering through the woods for quite some time. Here we were, deer hunting in a remote area with not a soul within miles. He was 23 years old and I was 17.

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An Old Friend

by Pastor Mark Fisher

June 7, 2016

It was one of those beautiful white winter days. I was working near my boyhood stomping grounds, when by chance I ran into a high school buddy. He had been away and I had not seen him for years. During that time I had become a Christian, while he had continued on the destructive path I had once been on.

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He Knew Better

by Pastor Mark Fisher

June 1, 2016

For many of us October is our favorite time of the year; the cloudless colorful days, the cool clear nights and of course good hunting and fishing. For us northern Minnesotans, we especially enjoyed these days and nights, for they did not come that often. But personally, another reason I enjoyed this time of year was because I was able to work alone and tour the county inspecting bridges. That was after a summer of supervising teenagers.

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Unprepared - Part 2

by Pastor Mark Fisher

May 9, 2016           

This Minnesota Fall day was cold, heavily overcast with a constant drizzle. As we were working in a remote area, we thought we were alone. While we were cutting the survey line through the woods, we heard a faint gunshot followed by what sounded like a voice yelling. The three of us debated as to what it was; it happened again. Two of us decided we needed to check it out. We got back to the truck and headed south. We found a car parked in the middle of the single lane dirt road with the driver’s door wide open. The story came together.

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Unprepared - Part 1

by Pastor Mark Fisher

May 2, 2016

Fall in Northern Minnesota was the time of the year I enjoyed most. Cool days, grouse hunting, dead mosquitoes; the yellows, reds, and purples of the leaves turning color; and, of course, Vikings football with the hope of another successful season! I loved being outdoors that time of year, whether hunting or working. Ah… could life get any better? (I was fairly ignorant of Colorado at the time.)

Well it so happened that my job with the U.S. Forest Service sent me and my crew on a low class dead end road. The three of us were surveying a new timber sale access road into a remote area. It was a swampy, wet area with heavy underbrush.

While we had been spending our days surveying, a young man from the Twin Cities had been preparing to grouse hunt in this same area. He had gathered all the right gear, but he lacked one thing; his belief and understanding of the outdoors were misguided.

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The Face Plant

by Pastor Mark Fisher

April 14, 2016

It surely wasn’t planned. With my skills, I was sure it would be amusing. And it happened right in front of the swampies!  (Definition of Swampy:  1. Any tourist visiting northern Minnesota. 2. Greenhorn, novice, or illiterate pertaining to our way of life. 3. Anyone lacking a Scandinavian accent.)

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By the Lakeside

by Pastor Mark Fisher

April 11, 2016

Ah… these jobs didn’t come often; relaxing by the lakeside at a public picnic grounds directing the building of a new pavilion and play area. Another unique feature; I was training an out of state civil engineering student. He had come to Minnesota hoping to gain engineering skills and also to satisfy his appetite for fishing. Yet, something greater was to happen of which he was unaware.

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Almost Gone?

by Pastor Mark Fisher

March 31, 2016

Regarding the work place, being the lowest person on the totem pole is both a blessing and a curse. The blessing: you don’t have to sit at a desk looking busy and important. The curse: you get the nasty jobs nobody else wants.

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Anticipation

by Pastor Mark Fisher

March 28, 2016

It was finally here. Spring had sprung, the snow was gone, ice was off the lakes, mosquitoes were not yet hatched, and my jail term (my parents called it school) was almost up. It was mid May and to northern Minnesotans that meant the highly anticipated fishing opener. The prized walleye was now within hook’s reach!

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Without a Compass

by Pastor Mark Fisher

March 10, 2016

It was an overcast snowy Northern Minnesota afternoon and the hunt was ending. I stepped down from the old rickety deer stand located in the heart of a brush infested swamp. Finding my buddy’s footprints I began to track him in order to get to the boat and cruise home before the stormy darkness overtook us.

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