Hope-Filled Heart

Merry Advent everyone! That’s right, Advent is here but better yet, Jesus is coming. No, not some earthly birthday party where presents are exchanged in celebration, but rather our King is coming – here – soon – to bring his Church home.
That’s the joy in my heart.
That’s the excitement in my soul.
That’s the longing of my heart – my hope.
So join me in worship as we sing praises to God our Father through Christ Jesus the Lord.


Father in heaven, it is fitting and natural to sing Your praises at all times and in all places as joy overflows from our hearts. You sent Jesus to be born in our likeness – to take on our frail form and then to suffer and die, only to shatter the fetters of death that we may be free. And now we anxiously await Jesus – this time to gather his church for an all-out banquet feast as we engage in uninhibited worship of You, oh God, with all the saints. And so, we prepare our hearts to receive our King as we join with the church on earth and the hosts of heaven in singing our joy-filled refrains of praise to You.

Reformation Praise

On this Reformation Sunday, I give thanks to God for raising up Martin Luther and the other Reformers to show us the truth of the Gospel – that we are not saved by/through works of the Law, but apart from the Law through the grace of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. We are saved by Faith alone in Christ alone by God’s grace alone as revealed in the Word alone all to the glory of God alone. And so let pray together and sign God’s unending praise.


It is indeed right and our pleasure to give thanks and praise to You, oh God, our Creator and Redeemer. We are sinful creatures who only want to glorify ourselves – looking out for number one – but through the Law You have convicted us and showed us how we fall short. But through Jesus, You saved us through his death and resurrection. And now, through faith in him, You have given us hope. How can one not be excited about this? How can one not rise up and praise You? How can one not live out loud, proclaiming Your glory through word and deed? And so we do just that by joining with the Church on earth and the hosts of heaven in singing Your unending praise…

Yes, Yes, YES

WOW, this one just flew through my fingers and onto the keyboard. No other words of introduction. So i’m just going to leave this right here. To God be the glory!


Oh yes, yes, YES! it is right and it is our joy to give You thanks and praise, oh God. You are our mighty Rock and Foundation, our Strong Fortress and Shelter, our Father who has redeemed us through Jesus Christ. You are our Life. Enliven us with Your Spirit that joy may spill forth from our beings and soak all those around us with Your love. May no one be missed. May we not show partiality but run to the lost and outcast. May we embrace our enemies and those difficult to love. May we beam with delight, so much so, that people are blinded and see nothing but Your glory. We love You and worship You, oh God, and thus we join with the Church on earth and the hosts of heaven in singing Your unending praise.

Guarding

I am preaching on Romans 10:8-17 this morning. Earlier i posted, A Gospel Poem, that flowed from this sermon prep. Now, i have written this Holy Communion liturgy that was inspired by that text. To God be the glory, always and forever, Amen.


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 You have given us the word of truth that saves us our souls –
Jesus Christ,
Your only Son,
our Lord.
And through Jesus, You have given us a “good deposit” that is to be guarded with our lives, not hidden away and protected as gold or silver, but maintained in all its integrity. For it is only through the unadulterated Gospel of Jesus Christ that people are saved.
And so,
may You send our feet to people who have not heard –
that faith may come through their hearing of the Gospel that flows from our lips and may those who hear this Good News come to call upon Your most holy name.
Oh Lord,
my God,
You are mighty to save and thus we join with the Church on earth and the hosts of heaven in singing Your unending praise…

Doer

The preaching text for today is James 1:19-27 as I continue working through the Epistle of James. The following is the Holy Communion liturgy I wrote with this James text in mind and heart. 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, for You and You alone are worthy. But words are not enough to fully express our worship, and so may we not get caught up in only spouting off words of doctrine – falling into complacency – but may we also be doers of the Word. May we control our tongues, care for the vulnerable and be holy as you are holy. Oh Lord our God, Creator and Redeemer, Shepherd and Fortress, our hope and salvation. You call us to action and thus grant us Your Spirit that we may respond and so glorify You. And so with the church on earth and the hosts of heaven we join in singing Your unending praise.

Being Built Up

This is the liturgy I wrote for Holy Communion today based on the preaching text, James 1:1-18. 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, for, of Your own will You brought us forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of first fruits of Your creatures. (James 1:18) You brought us forth through Jesus Christ and thus You have promised to bring us to completion and place on our head the crown of life. You put us through trials in order build us up that we may remember who we are and whose we are – becoming more and more Christ-like. You do not desire our destruction but rather our salvation. May our endurance bring You the glory that You rightly deserve. And so, with the Church on earth – redeemed sinners through the blood of the lamb – and the hosts of heaven, we join in singing Your unending praise.

Striving

The Gospel text that I am preaching on is Luke 13:22-30 ~ strive to enter through the narrow door. May we not strive to serve sin; being workers of evil, but may we strive to know God better through Christ Jesus our Lord. Let us pray…

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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 Jesus Christ You have saved us from our sins – forgiving an obstinate people. You have redeemed our lives from the pit. You have snatched us from Satan’s grip. Jesus has purchased our very lives through his very own blood. To recount all Your deeds is an impossible task. Oh God, Father and King, grant us Your Spirit that we may live a life of striving that we may not be left knocking on a closed door. May we not seek to cater to our old and dead life but may we seek to give You thanks and worship for the New Life we have through Jesus Christ – for he has striven that we could be saved. And so, with the church earth and the hosts of heaven we join in singing Your unending praise…