You Ways and Your Thoughts

Holy God,
the prophet Isaiah records Your words,
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,
declares the LORD.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
Those words can be frustrating to sinners
who want what we want,
but I also take great comfort
that when everything seems out of control
and doesn’t make sense,
You really are in control.
And so, I come before You this morning in faith.
My life is in Your hands.
I don’t understand many things,
(and forgive me when I claim I do),
but You are God and thus I trust in You.
Mold me and shape me.
Renew me and remake me.
Guide me and lead me.
Transform me so that
my thoughts become Your thoughts,
and You ways become my ways.
I pray this through my Lord and Savior,
Jesus Christ,
Amen.

The Pastor -|—

Strength and Shield

The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him.
[Psalms 28:7 ESV]

Oh Lord,
You are my Strength.
You are my Shield.
In You I am found safe and secure.
In You I am on firm footing.
In You I shall never to be moved.
And thus I praise You,
oh Lord,
for many would assail me,
Satan’s torments crash against me as the waves of the sea.
Sin is constantly enticing me to turn away from You.
On my own I am weak.
On my own I would surely succumb to the evil one.
On my own You are not glorified.
But You ARE my Strength.
You ARE my Shield.
And thus I am here to praise You.
My heart exalts.
My heart is over-joyed.
For You help me,
and You shield me.
You place a hedge of protection around me.
And there is nothing and no one that can snatch me out of Your hands.
And so, as I begin this new day,
may I ever remember You as my Fortress,
and say with confidence and boldness,
Satan, bring it on.”
To You, oh God, be all glory and honor and strength and praise.
In Jesus name I pray,
Amen.

The Pastor -|—

Be at Peace

The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.” [Numbers 6:24‭-‬26 ESV]

Let that blessing begin your day and carry you though as you live and serve in God’s kingdom. What grabs me this morning is “…and give you peace.” The enemy seeks to hinder the kingdom and your work within. Be at peace, Christian, the LORD’s blessing will be your shield.

The Pastor -|—

Rejoice and Be Glad

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.
[Psalm 118:24]

There is much in this life in which to be depressed.
There is much in this life in which to be angry.
There is much in this life in which to be frustrated.

I recently read a blog post (I won’t get into details as they aren’t important here) that made me frustrated. Nearly ever day I watch/read something in the news that makes me roll my eyes. Each morning I wake up in some degree of back pain as I deal with arthritis. There is much in this life in which to complain.

But…

…there is much in this life is which to rejoice.

Namely?

God made this day.
God is in charge.
God has redeemed this creation through Jesus Christ.
God has created you for a purpose.
God is sovereign.

When one reflects on that (and the many other truths that could be written) how can one’s heart not rejoice?

This is indeed the day that the Lord has made; I will rejoice and be glad in it 🙂

Praise be to God!

The Pastor -|—

The Morning

The scene
A quiet house
The sound of chirping birds drifting in through an open window
The words of Scripture marinating in my soul
And a good cup of coffee to top it off

God’s blessings to start the day
God’s presence to renew my soul

The prayer
Oh God,
Your mercies are new everyday
Your blessings abound
Your love is wide and deep
Your grace is unending

Your Son, Jesus, is Lord of all
My Savior, Jesus, died for me

Renew my faith this day
Embolden my witness
Bless my words
Guide my decisions

May Your mercies and blessings;
Your love and grace
Be evident to all

Glory and honor be unto
You
Oh God
This day and always

Amen

The Pastor -|—

Walking Closer

Allow these words from this great hymn to be spoken over you. Let them soak in and drip from your being. Receive these words through faith in Jesus Christ and know the grace of God.

I am weak, but Thou art strong;
Jesus, keep me from all wrong;
I’ll be satisfied as long
As I walk, let me walk close to Thee.

Just a closer walk with Thee,
Grant it, Jesus, is my plea,
Daily walking close to Thee,
Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.

Through this world of toil and snares,
If I falter, Lord, who cares?
Who with me my burden shares?
None but Thee, dear Lord, none but Thee.

Just a closer walk with Thee,
Grant it, Jesus, is my plea,
Daily walking close to Thee,
Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.

When my feeble life is o’er,
Time for me will be no more;
Guide me gently, safely o’er
To Thy kingdom shore, to Thy shore.

Just a closer walk with Thee,
Grant it, Jesus, is my plea,
Daily walking close to Thee,
Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.

The Pastor -|—

Morning Lifting

Holy Father, mighty God,

I lift my prayer to you this morning as I begin my day; ready to face all that will confront me.

I lift my prayer to you this morning as I begin my day; seeking Your will and the faith to stand strong.

I lift my prayer to you this morning with a heavy heart for those who are around me; those who know you and those who know you not:
~ For the lost that they may see Your redeeming face.
~ For the misguided that they may know the Truth of Your son, Jesus Christ.
~ For those who serve false gods as they should serve You; may they see the error of serving gods that will not and can not save.
~ For those who have heard Your name but live in fear of living for You. Grant them confidence, hope and peace.
~ For those who believe in Your Son, Jesus Christ, but feel they have nothing to offer; show them their worth.
~ For those who believe in Your Son and live boldly; may they continue to live boldly for You.
~ For those in leadership that they may live above reproach; giving glory to You through their lives.
~ For the Church that it may be faithful with it’s gifts and talents; boldly proclaiming the coming Kingdom and serving those in need.
~ For those who have heard the name of Jesus but have turned away; carry them home as a shepherd seeking and restoring a lost sheep.

And I pray for those who I have not thought of praying for; may they be brought into my life that I may serve them as You would have me serve them.

Receive my prayer this morning, oh God, that Your glory may shine bright in this dark world.
Receive my prayer this morning, oh God, that I may live for You.
Receive my prayer this morning, oh God, that Your Kingdom may come and Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

And as I do this “heavy lifting” this morning, lighten my load with the knowledge and faith that all those who come to You will find a burden that is easy and a load that is light; for it is You that does the “heavy lifting”.

So…

I lift this prayer to you as I head out into this wonderful creation.
Guide me,
Teach me,
Show me
Your most holy way.

In Jesus name I pray, Amen

The Pastor -|—