Praise Befitting

Praise the Lord ! Praise the Lord , O my soul! I will praise the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.
[Psalms 146:1‭-‬2 ESV]

Praise is befitting You for You are glorious.
Your beauty is beyond words,
for when I gaze at Your creation I stand in silent awe.
And that is just the tip of the iceberg,
for to see Your full glory and beauty would short-circuit my brain;
not to mention that as a sinner I can’t see You face to face and live.
Your beauty is beyond words,
and,
Your holiness is perfect.
And thus as a sin-stained creature I am nothing in Your sight.
But You, Oh Lord my God, are full of
Mercy
Grace
Compassion
Forgiveness
Yes, praise is befitting You for You do not give to me as I deserve.
But You gave me Jesus.
Oh wow, You gave me Jesus.
Your beauty is beyond words.
Your holiness is perfect.
and Your love is amazing.
Yes, Lord, Your love; for You are love.
Ohhhh,
I am at a lose for words as I meditate on You.
May even my groanings and sighings be praise befitting You.
Praise to You, oh Lord!
Praise to You!

Beautiful Jesus

We worship God because he sent Jesus to reveal His love and grace to sinful people through his death and resurrection. As you prepare to worship on this Lord’s Day, reflect on the beauty of Jesus; the glory that shines forth revealing the Father. Don’t enter your places of worship out of a sense of duty to one another, but because of what God has done through Jesus Christ. As the psalmist says, in Psalm 27:4, “One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple.

The following poem is dedicated to the beauty of Jesus…

Lord Jesus you are beautiful,
And your heart is full of mercy.
Your love is all encompassing,
Your compassion has no boundary.

Your presence gives me holy peace,
Your comfort soothes my broken heart.
I was weak, blind and oh so lost,
From you I’ll never be apart.

You shine forth the Father’s glory,
Your face glows brighter than the sun.
Your beauty takes my breath away,
And with you I am so undone.

I long to gaze upon your face,
And to bask in your loving glow.
Lord Jesus you are beautiful,
And its you that I want to know.

Holy Trinity Prayer

On this Holy Trinity Sunday, I offer this prayer that I wrote for the Great Thanksgiving in the service of Holy Communion. To God be the glory…

It is indeed right and salutary that we should at all times and in all places give thanks and praise to you, oh God. As our heavenly Father, You have shown a love that has secured our salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. You have sent Your Holy Spirit to guide and inflame our lives that You would be glorified. You have kept us from the evil one and have promised us a place at Your table where we can feast in peace; worshiping You forever without hindrance. You are our awesome God and thus are worthy of all glory. For that reason, we join with the Church on earth and the hosts of heaven in singing Your unending praise…

Father’s Day Prayer

Happy Father’s Day to all the men out there. You are being honored today for showing godly love to others and for living out your calling to reflect God’s glory. The following is a prayer that I have adapted from a Mother’s Day prayer that I came across years ago.

Have a great day, guys, and to God be the glory.

God our Father, in your wisdom and love you made all things. Bless those fathers, who have been called and accepted the responsibility of parenting and/or showing fatherly love to others.
Bless those who have lost a spouse to death or divorce.
Bless those who, through various circumstances, find themselves parenting their children alone.
Bless those men who have been called to parent children through adoption or the foster care system.
Bless grandfathers who share their wisdom and love with multiple generations.
Bless those fathers who have had to bear the grief of mourning the death of a child.
We give thanks for uncles and godfathers and neighbors, who share fatherly love with so many children; and for far too often overlooked stepfathers.
We give thanks for those who choose to remain without biological children, sharing love with the world in many ways.
We pray for those who struggle with infertility, whose desire for a child is met with frustration.
We pray for the fathers of children with special needs and chronic illness, who know anxiety and exhaustion better than most.
We pray for those who were given abuse and heartbreak by the ones called to love them.
We pray for fathers who have made the difficult and loving decision to entrust a child to adoptive parents.
Strengthen all these men by your love that they may become the loving, caring persons they are called and meant to be; reflecting Your love and glory. Grant this through Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.

The Name

The following is part of the Great Thanksgiving for Holy Communion today, Pentecost Sunday. It picks up on themes from the sermon for today…

It is indeed right and salutary that we should at all times and in all places give thanks and praise to You, oh God, for through the name that is above all names, Jesus, You made a name for us through faith by the Holy Spirit. You have revealed the truth of who You are and have sealed our names in the Book of Life. You have given us peace and intimacy with You and have promised us a seat at Your table. Oh God, our Father, You are worthy of all worship, and so with the Church on earth and the hosts of heaven we join in singing Your unending praise…

Bold Witnesses

Today is Ascension Sunday and thus I will be preaching on Luke 24:44-53. The following is the Great Thanksgiving liturgy I wrote for Holy Communion with this context in mind. Stand firm for the Truth and never, ever shrink back in fear…

It is indeed right and salutary that we should at all times and in all places give thanks and praise to you, oh God. You have shown us Your glory through Your son Jesus Christ.
You have opened our eyes to the Truth.
You have cradled us in Your arms.
You have given us hope.
Oh God, Creator and Redeemer, through faith in Jesus’ death and resurrection we rest secure. My we live as bold witnesses of that Truth that others may come to know You as their Lord and God. May we not shrink back but stand firm; ready to die if called to do so. And so, since we have such a sure and certain hope we join with the Church on earth and the hosts of heaven in singing Your unending praise…

Pastor’s Prayer

Holy God,
You have called me to the awesome task
of preaching Your Word and
presiding at Your table.
You have called me to lead Your people in worship.
On my own I am incapable of discharging this call.
On my own I will surely mess it all up.
On my own I will surely attempt to rob You of all glory.
Oh God, mighty Father,
walk with me hand in hand that I may give You all the glory.
Hold me tight that I may not stray.
Grant me Your Spirit that I may be faithful with Your Word.
I praise You that You have chosen me to be Your instrument this morning.
To You be all praise and glory.
In Jesus name I pray,
Amen.