One Thing

[Inspired by Luke 10:38-42]

One thing and one thing only,
that is all that’s required,
for with Jesus the Savior,
You will never be lonely.

You don’t need to add to this.
No works, no deeds, no actions.
Jesus is all that you need,
To enjoy eternal bliss.

For God’s grace is sufficient.
There’s nothing else that’s needed.
Attempts to self-justify,
will always be deficient.

So focus your attention,
and away from your attempts.
Jesus has finished the work,
to release all your tension.

Oh God, You are Lord of All

[Inspired by Job 38-42]

Holy God; Creator and Father, Lord of all,
The depths of Your being is beyond comprehension.
There is no limit to Your knowledge.
Your strength and power is unmatched.
Your authority is absolute; even the waves and the waters obey you, and creatures without understanding know their prescribed limits. You have set everything in motion and You sustain all that You have made.
Oh God, You are Lord of all.
You know the deepest recesses of the earth – nothing is hidden from You.
You know the secrets of all living things – You breathed the breath of life.
Your providence is unmatched in all the world – only from You do we have our sustenance.
Oh God, You are Lord of all.
Darkness is not dark to You for You are the Light, and nothing can overcome You. The most heinous of evil is no match for Your power and rule; for it has already been overcome. Actually, it never had a chance. You are King and sovereign.
Oh God, You are Lord of all.
You are the source of all wisdom – You are omniscient.
You are the source of love – You are love.
You are the source of all morality – everything is judged by You.
Oh God, You are Lord of all.
You are filled with majesty and honor – clothed with splendor unmatched.
You are enthroned on high – King of all creation.
You and You alone are worthy all all praise and worship.
Oh God, You are Lord of all.
Who am I to question You – to doubt Your actions?
Who am I to make suggestions – to dare tell You what to do?
Who am I to resist Your commands – to disobey, to act contrary to Your will.
I am but a worm in Your presence; nothing but clay molded by You; a creature without understanding.
In all my ways and words, I despise myself and repent. For the sake of Jesus Christ forgive me, heal me, remake me, mold me.
Oh God, You are Lord of all.

Faces

Psalm 27:7–8 (ESV) ~ Hear, O Lord, when I cry aloud; be gracious to me and answer me! You have said, “Seek my face.” My heart says to you, “Your face, Lord, do I seek.”

Whose face do you seek? Is it the face of a political leader in hopes they will acquiesce to your demands to remake this world into your image?

Whose face do you seek? Is it the face of success in hopes you can build a nest egg in order to gain a sense of peace in this life?

Whose face do you seek? Is it the face of a false prophet who refuses to hold scripture to a high standard and thus waters it down to make it easier for you to accept?

Whose face do you seek? Is it the face of laziness so you can blindly ride the shirt-tails of cheap grace in order to enjoy the labors of others.

Whose face do you seek? Is it the face of busyness in an effort to justify yourself before others and God.

Whose face do you seek? Is it the face of a worldly fortress so as to secure rest, peace and comfort for your weary body and soul.

Whose face do you seek? Is it the face of affirmation so you can feel better about your life.

But…

These faces care nothing about you. They only look at you with disdain, apathy and disinterest. They make promises and they look good for a while, but eventually these faces become disfigured; sending you on another search for a new face.

But there is a face out there waiting for you. A face that shines brighter than the sun. A face of love. A face of grace. A face of truth. That face is Jesus. He doesn’t promise you the easy life, but he does promise you Life. Don’t be fooled. The faces of this world falsely promise you an easy life, but can go no farther. Only Jesus cares enough for you to give his life for the forgiveness of your sins that you may see God face to face someday. Don’t settle for anything less. Seek HIS face and truly be at peace.

Singing His Song

You are right and You are strong,
But they tell me I am wrong.
You are Life and You have won,
But they tell me I am done.

But…

Mighty You are in power,
And gentle as a flower.
A rock solid foundation,
The King of all creation.

There is no God quite like You,
And thus to You praise is due.
But they bow to other lords,
When in them there’s no rewards.

They’re striving after the wind,
And to death they are destined.
Oh, send me to preach thy Name,
So it is You they acclaim.

For…

Sinners we are that is true,
Death is due, that’s nothing new.
Falling short of Your glory,
But that’s not the whole story.

For Jesus was crucified,
And through faith I’m justified.
My sin is covered and gone,
Your wrath has now been withdrawn.

So send me with Your power,
That I may never cower.
They will tell me I am wrong,
But I’ll always sing Your song.

Praying the Psalms ~ Psalm 27:1-6

Psalm 27 is the Psalm reading for worship this Sunday (July 21). As I read and meditated on it, I wrote this prayer for the first 6 verses. Adversaries will always oppose you if you follow God through Christ Jesus our Lord, but let them oppose, for God is your defender. Let us pray…

Oh God,
the Light of my life;
You are my salvation and my hope.
You are my strong fortress – a shield about me.
You are my hedge of protection – a guard for my life.
You are a mighty warrior – none can overcome.
You are victorious and You are for me.
Therefore, oh God, whom shall I fear? Why shall I be afraid?
What can overcome me?
Who can bring me down?
Adversaries oppose me; they oppose Your Church, but they shall not prevail.
They strike me on the left and the right; in front and behind,
but when they fight against me, it is You they oppose; for You are my God and my Defender.
They will be spin their wheels and gain no ground against You.
I am at peace as adversaries make war against me and Your Church;
for You have overcome them all.
Oh God, I hide in You.
I long to gaze at Your beauty and to know You better.
I long to dwell in Your temple; my home, to worship You without end.
I long to sing Your praises with the hosts of heaven as You lift me above my adversaries.
You are my salvation – my hope, and thus I do not fear.
Victory is Yours.
I am Yours.
And thus I will sing my praises to You,
here on earth and in Your courts forever.
Alleluia and Amen!

Overflow

This is part of the Holy Communion liturgy that I wrote based on the preaching text, Luke 10:25-37, the Parable of the Good Samaritan…

It is indeed right and salutary that we should at all times and in all places give thanks and praise to you, oh God through Christ Jesus our Lord. For through Jesus’ death and resurrection, You have shown mercy and compassion to an unclean, sinful and lost people. You did not pass us by, but You have bandaged our wounds of sin and have brought healing to our souls. You have given us a home for which we long. You have given us hope. May our hearts be filled with Your love, so much so, that it overflows into acts of compassion and mercy to our neighbor; as we walk humbly with You. And so, with the Church on earth and the hosts of heaven we join in singing Your unending praise…

Just the Gospel

From the sermon this morning. This can not be said enough. So I am going to just leave this right here…

My friends, through faith in Jesus Christ, your sins have been forgiven and thus you have been justified in the eyes of God. You cannot justify yourself. But your filthy rags have been removed and the white robe of righteousness has been placed on you. Jesus has personally dressed you with the wedding garment and has seated you at the banquet table. Through his death and resurrection, you have been made new. This is not from you. This is not something you can obtain through self-justification for you are unclean, dirty and filthy; always falling short of the glory of God. You are sinner. The justification that places you in God’s holy courts; His kingdom, is pure gift. It is all grace. Confess that you are a sinner and know a love like no other.