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.

Arise and Give Thanks

Arise and give thanks unto the Lord,
For his mercies are new every day.
His love is wide.
His grace is abundant.
His faithfulness is unending.
His glory is radiant.
He is worthy of all praise,
Each and every second,
Each and every moment,
He is worthy.
Arise, oh believer, arise,
For New Life is yours through Jesus.
Arise, oh believer, arise,
Give thanks unto the Lord.

Clubhouse

The joy of a childhood clubhouse is that it is a place for a child to get away from the world and hang out with their friends. The clubhouse is secret – only for those who are members. Others may know of its existence, but they know they are not welcome. The clubhouse is a meeting place for the members. What happens in the clubhouse, stays in the clubhouse. To break the clubhouse code could mean excommunication. To bring guests is met with skepticism from the others. Clubhouses can serve a purpose – for a time – but in the end they become obsolete. A church that adopts or becomes what I have described, will be obsolete. They will serve a purpose for a limited time, but in the end, they will be no more. Jesus didn’t form a clubhouse of like-minded people. Jesus formed a Church that was to change the world.

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…

Subpoenaed

Sunday, June 2 is Ascension Sunday and the text that I will be preaching on is Luke 24:44-53. The following is the opening paragraph of the sermon that God is laying on my heart. If you want the rest, you can now watch the sermon on our congregation’s website at: http://www.livingwordlutheranchurch.com.
The sermon should be posted next week sometime. In the mean time, here is a little sermon teaser for you…

Shortly before his ascension, Jesus issues a subpoena (You are witnesses to these things) to all who know the Father as revealed in Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit. The Subpoena is to testify to the Truth. It is not something that someone chooses. You don’t choose to be witness but rather you become one and thus are called and commanded to testify. Your testimony is not to be about your opinions or theories. You are not called to speculate or guess. You are called to testify to the Truth. The facts of the matter. And the facts are this, thus saith the Lord, Jesus has suffered and died and rose from the dead for the forgiveness of sins. He has ascended and is seated on the right hand of the Father. He WILL come again to judge the living and the dead. Amen? These are the facts. Now, what say you?

Witnesses

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” [Acts 1:8 ESV]

Witnesses don’t share their opinions.
Witnesses don’t share their theories.
Witnesses don’t speculate.
Witnesses don’t guess.
But rather…
Witnesses tell the truth.
the whole truth,
and nothing but the truth.
So helped by the Holy Spirit.
And YOU, Christian, are called to be a witness for Jesus.
You’ve been subpoenaed by Jesus.
But here’s the thing…
The Holy Spirit will give you power to witness.
Jesus doesn’t send you empty-handed.
Jesus sends you equipped.
Jesus sends you.
Jesus goes WITH you.
You are not alone.
Don’t be afraid of the Truth.
Proclaim the Truth boldly and if the world hates you, then so be it.
Jesus loves you.
You are witnesses.
So go and give them Jesus.