TODAY

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Today
I awoke
To rich life found in grace,
Strong faith that abides
And promise that makes me whole.

Today
I arose
With fresh hope in my heart;
New thoughts on my mind
and feelings I’ve never known.

Today
I composed
A glad song full of joy,
To sing of great love
And mercy that ever grows.

Today
I will give
An offering of true praise
To honor the One
Whose compassion fills me so.

Welcome

This blog is dedicated to expressing all of the good things of God.  It is specifically christian on purpose.

If you’re thinking, “Oh no:  Religion!”  Relax.  To quote a saying from the Jesus Movement, “Christianity:  Not a religion, a relationship.”  This is about knowing the loving god.  It is not about “do’s and don’ts,” doctrine  or dogma (sorry dogs!)  Do feel free to raise contravercial topics; just be respectful.  Please refrain from name calling, criticizing specific people and crude language.  Thank you.

 

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead…”  1 Peter 1:3

 

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13

OH WORSHIP THE LORD

For years now, I have been intrigued by a principle that shows up in Scripture, more by wording than content:
“I will…”
“trust in the Lord,” “put my trust in Him…”
“Praise Him,” “glorify His Name.”
Both trusting god and worshipping Him are matters of will/choice, not responses to feelings.
Interesting!
Lately, I have been asking the Lord questions about worship, partly because I hear so many variations on what worship is and why it is important.
One comment I have heard in the past few years is, the quality of music and level of musicianship aren’t important; only God’s presence is. I am troubled by this: I say it’s both. Excellence in playing and performing is an offering to the Lord that draws others in; God’s presence makes worship complete.
I have also heard people say that we worship to give to God; therefore, His presence is not a measure of success. Mmmm, yeah; okay(???)
What do you believe?
What is your experience?
Why do you worship and how do you know that you succeeded?

ONE MINUTE

Here’s a question:

If you had 60 seconds to tell the whole world one thing, what would it be?

For me, I think it would be this:

God loves you so very much! He knows everything there ever was or ever will be to know about you and treasures all that you are, from the tiniest, most minuscule particle to the greatest and most glorious aspect of your being.
He loves to bless you; His will is for you to be whole.
Draw close to Him; He will gather you up in His arms and pour out His affection on you.
God really is good, all the time, every day!
His provision, protection, healing, forgiveness, gifts and salvation are as much for today as they were for the Apostles in the Book of Acts.
Come, taste and see that the Lord is good; put your trust in Him and know the wonders of His love.

Okay, that would probably fill my minute and the powers that be might be cutting me off at this point, but if one person gets even one point, I will have accomplished an important work.

HIGHER PERSPECTIVE

Randy Clark wrote this a little over two years ago. I have read it several times, and consider it to be worth attention:
” All things are possible to him who believes”
Verse/Context: “So (Jesus) asked his father, ‘How long has this been
happening to (your son)?’ And he said, ‘From childhood. And often he has
thrown him both into the fire and into the water to destroy him. But if You
can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.’ Jesus said to him, “If you
can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.’ Immediately the
father of the child cried out and said with tears, ‘Lord, I believe; help my
unbelief!’” (Mark 9:21-­‐24).
Lower Perspectives – The boy’s father could have concluded that:

There were no solutions in the present because there had been none in
the past.

Jesus got a little carried away in the moment and really meant to say
that a few small things are possible if God is in a good mood that day.

Begging Jesus is more vital than believing in the person of Jesus.

God is not that concerned about children being emotionally free.

Jesus was insensitive to focus on his level of faith.

Declaring, “Lord, I believe!” was a lie. His experience proved otherwise.

Elevating truths:

1. A main key to overcoming obstacles is to develop our beliefs – The
father said to Jesus, “But if You can do anything, have compassion on us
and help us.” Jesus turned the focus from divine willingness and ability
to the father’s personal beliefs. Jesus said, “If you can believe, all
things are possible to him who believes.” The father was invited into a
higher perspective that would change everything.
2. The duration of a problem does not determine the likelihood of
breakthrough – The Bible frequently reported the time span of an
unresolved difhiculty to stir hope in us that longstanding issues have
solutions (and are still to be pursued for a miracle). Our perspective
about apparent unmovable situations is a bigger problem than the
problem.
3. Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith – “immediately the
father of the child cried out and said with tears, ‘Lord, I believe; help
my unbelief!’” This man of seemingly small faith received a great
miracle because of his humility and for “looking unto Jesus, the author
and finisher of (his) faith” (Hebrews 12:2). We can do the same.
Giving God Something to Work With: 1) Memorize Romans 12:2 and John
8:31-­‐32; 2) Cry out to God for a revolution to happen in your beliefs about a
long-­‐standing issue; and 3) Take a specihic step to bring freedom to children
and youth.
Declarations that Create Higher Perspectives: 1) Jesus is the author and
finisher of my faith; 2) God has surprising solutions to my long-­‐standing
concerns; and 3) My life protects and delivers children from darkness.

PRAYER FOR THE CHURCH

Jesus,
We repent from carrying burdens that have not been put on us by You:
The choices that others have made or refuse to make, trying to prove Your reality because it has been demanded from us.
Working to be acceptable

Your yoke is easy; Your burden is light; to do what You command is not burdensome at all.

We are released from responsibility that did not come from You, but has been put on Your body, the Church, by religion, reputation, our own particular histories and judgement against us by the world.
We lay all of that down before You.

We rise up in the authority that You have given us, without fear or shame; with courage, boldness, hope and great joy!
Forgive us for trying to conjure up opportunities. We repent from our own works.
with our arms free to reach, we stretch out our hands to grasp Kingdom possibilities!
We call forth all of the connections You have for us:
With You first; then within our selves.
Next in the Church; then in our neighborhoods and communities.
We call forth connections around the world., until Your Kingdom has been spread everywhere.

Thank you that we are Holy and acceptable in Your sight; that we are dearly loved by You.
Thank You for revelation and wisdom,
For Your Word;
For blessing, healing, good will and favor.
We stand tall, a royal priesthood, an army of sons and daughters, clothed in grace; equipped with everything we need. As You call us, we obey.
We live as reflections of You, unhindered, powerful and free.

To the glory of Your Name. Amen.

GOD’S HEART

God’s heart beats for you:
The everyday person
With a job, chores and obligations;
Bills to pay, a house to clean,
The yard and garden;
Children to raise.

God’s heart beats for you:
The one without a home;
Wondering where to turn for food and help,
No place to go ’til evening,
A shelter and meal;
Another day.

God’s heart beats for you:
Successful and wealthy;
With a plan, dreams and great ambition;
A price to pay, more to gain;
Employees and board room,
Hard work each day.

God’s heart beats for you:
Old ones and small children;
Who live with vulnerability;
Neighbors, friends and family
Mean so much to you,
“Bless them,” you pray.

God’s heart beats for you:
In poverty and fear;
Whose bodies are thin, sick and injured;
Who search for food and water;
Grateful for small things,
Living today.

God’s heart beats for you:
Wherever you might be;
Whatever your name or vocation;
Richest of all or most poor;
Public or hidden;
He meets your gaze.

LIGHT OF THE WORLD

Light of the world,
You shine in me;
Shine even brighter
So that all may see
You:
Your wonderful love;
Your magnificent grace
Your awesome expression
Reflected on my face.

King of all kings,
You reign in me;
Rule even more fully
So that all may be
Filled
With Your holy presence;
Your compassionate ways;
Peace, joy and hope;
True worship and praise.

God above all gods,
You live in me;
Awaken me fully
So that I will be
True
To faith in Your goodness,
Your joy, hope and peace;
Your mercy and kindness;
Your power released.

Oh Breath of Life,
You flow through me;
Flow ever more freely
So You may be
Real
To all I encounter;
To this world that You love;
Until we all join You
In Heaven above.