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Showing posts from August, 2019

God's unfailing love

"I see Your mercy in front of me. I walk in the light of Your truth" (Psalm 26:3).  In Your mercy, Lord, open up for us a new way of living - a way of living that is shaped by Your truth, a way of living that is filled with Your light.

"I have always been mindful of Your unfailing love and have lived in reliance on Your faithfulness" (Psalm 26:3). Have we always been mindful of God's unfailing love? Have we always trusted in His faithfulness? We know the answer as soon as we ask the question. Often, we have failed the Lord - but He has never failed us. Many times, we have let Him down - but He has never let us down. It's His love for us that's unfailing - not our love for Him.

"The Lord is my light and my salvation" (Psalm 27:1).

“They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light” (Revelation 22:5).
No fear of a power cut! This is brighter than the Eurovision Song Contest!"The Lord is my light and my salvation — whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life — of whom shall I be afraid?" (Psalm 27:1).
The "light" that brightens up our life is the light of God's "salvation." It's the Saviour who brings us out of darkness. He brings us into His light. This light gives us strength. God's salvation is more than forgiveness for the past. It is strength for every day.

What's so special about the Lord?

“Lord, the God of Israel, there is no God like You in heaven above or on earth below—You who keep Your covenant of love with Your servants who continue wholeheartedly in Your way. You have kept Your promise to Your servant David my father; with Your mouth You have promised and with Your hand You have fulfilled it—as it is today" (1 Kings 8:23-24).

There is no God like the Lord. What's so special about Him? It's His love. It's His faithfulness. He loves us with a faithful love. His love is great. His faithfulness is great. Where else could we find such love? Where else could we find such faithfulness? - Nowhere else! It's only the Lord who loves us with a perfect love. It's only the Lord who will remain completely faithful, when others let down and leave us feeling discouraged. There is no God like the Lord. There is no love like His love. There is no faithfulness like His faithfulness.  In love, He gives us His precious promises. In love, He fulfil…

Anchored in Jesus

"To You, Lord, I call; You are my Rock" (Psalm 28:1).
"I’ve anchored in Jesus, the storms of life I’ll brave,
I’ve anchored in Jesus, I fear no wind or wave.
I’ve anchored in Jesus, for He hath power to save,
I’ve anchored to the Rock of Ages" (Lewi­s E. Jones).

At the heart of true worship, there is thanksgiving.

"I will honour You highly, O Lord ... O Lord my God, I will give thanks to You forever" (Psalm 30:1,12). At the heart of true worship, which gives much glory to God, there is thanksgiving. We must never forget that we are sinners, who have been saved by His amazing grace. We receive His grace at the Cross of our Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. Let us give thanks to God for our Saviour. "You have turned for me my mourning into dancing" (Psalm 30:11). What the Lord does for us - This is truly amazing. He does for us what we could never do for ourselves. He does for us what no-one else could ever do for us. We look at what we are. We look at what the Lord has done for us. We say, This is 'amazing grace.' We say, 'To God be the glory. Great things He has done.'  "This is the Lord's doing; it is marvellous in our eyes" (Psalm 118:23). "Not to us, Lord, not to us but to Your Name be the glory, because of Your love and faithfuln…

God's Power, God's Love

"The Lord sits enthroned over the flood; the Lord is enthroned as King forever. The Lord gives strength to His people; the Lord blesses His people with peace" (Psalm 29:10-11). The Lord is "enthroned" - This is the God of power. The Lord "gives", the Lord "blesses" - This is the God of love. When we think of the God of power, we must always remember that He is also the God of love. When we think of the God of love, we must never forget that He is also the God of power. The Lord is the King of love.

Is God a faraway God?

"O my God, do not be so distant from me. Come quickly to help me, O Lord, my Saviour" (Psalm 38:22). Is God a faraway God? If we think of God in this way, we've missed the point. We don't just ask Him to come to us. We thank Him that He has come to us. Jesus is our Saviour (Matthew 1:21). Emmanuel - God with us (Matthew 1:23). "I wait with hope for you, O Lord. You will answer, O Lord, my God" (Psalm 38:15). We look at Jesus, and we are filled with hope. We bring our problem to God. He gives His answer - Jesus, our Saviour.

"My hope is in You" (Psalm 39:7).

Hope - what does this mean? We speak about hoping for the best' when we fear the words. We say, 'I hope so', when we're not too sure about saying, 'I think so.' What kind of hope is this. It's human optimism. It's wishful thinking. There is another hope, a better hope. This hope begins when we see that our human situation is hopeless. It begins when we look away from ourselves to the Lord, when we look to Him, and say, "My hope is in You."

Social Concern and Spiritual Worship

"Blessed is the one who has concern for helpless people ... Thank the Lord God of Israel through all eternity" (Psalm 41:1,3). Social concern and spiritual worship - Both are important. There's an earthly situation which we cannot turn our back on. There's an eternal dimension we dare not lose sight of.

My Saviour and my God

"My soul thirsts for God, for the living God ... He is my Saviour and my God ... my Rock" (Psalm 42:2,5,8). The living God is our Saviour and our Rock. When we come to Him, our life can never the same again. We were lost. Now, we've been found. We were falling apart. Now, we're standing on the solid Rock. "Why are you discouraged, my soul? Why are you so restless? Put your hope in God, because I will still praise Him. He is my Saviour and my God" (Psalm 42:11; 43:5). These two verses are the same as each other. Some things are worth repeating. We need to hear them over and over again. We get discouraged. Our heads go down. We get restless. We're being pulled in different directions. The pull of the world seems so strong. Does this kind of thing happen now and again? No! It's happening all the time. There's never a time when we don't need to hear the words, "Put your hope in God." There's never a time when…

My heart is overflowing with Good News ...

"My heart is overflowing with Good News ... Grace is poured on your lips ... O warrior, strap your sword to your side ... Ride on victoriously in your majesty for the cause of truth, humility, and righteousness" (Psalm 45:1-4). As we read this Psalm, we catch a glimpse of our Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ - "You are the most handsome of Adam's descendants" (Psalm 45:2). The Good News comes to us from Jesus. Grace comes to us from Jesus. We hear the Gospel. we believe in Jesus. He forgives our sins. He leads us in the way of victory. He teaches us truth, humility and righteousness. His truth sets us free - to become less self-centred and more Christ-centred. He teaches us the truth about ourselves. This keeps us humble. We're never any more than sinners who've been saved by His grace. He teaches us the truth about Himself. He is our Saviour. He is our Lord. As we learn of Jesus, our Saviour and Lord, He creates in us a desire …

"With God we shall gain the victory, and He will trample down our enemies" (Psalm 60:12).

When, Lord, we're feeling defeated, Your Word gives us great encouragement. The battle isn't ours. It's Yours. The victory isn't ours. It's Yours. In the heat of the battle, You are our "strong tower against the enemy" (Psalm 61:3). When we're feeling the ferocity of Satan's hostility towards the truth of Your Word and the Gospel of Your grace, help us to remember that You, Lord, are "enthroned for ever" (Psalm 61:7).

"Within Your temple, O God, we meditate on Your unfailing love" (Psalm 48:9).

What do we do when human love fails? We look beyond human love. We look to divine love.  God's love never fails. It's an "unfailing love." We should think, often, of the love of God. We should think of Jesus - "God so loved the world that He gave His only Son" (John 3:16). We should think of the supreme demonstration of God's love - "God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us" (Romans 5:8). Think of Jesus. Thank God for Jesus.

Create in me a clean heart ...

"Create in me a clean heart, O God... Cast me not away from Thy presence... Restore to me the joy of Thy salvation" (Psalm 51:10-12).These words come to us from the ancient past. They were first spoken many centuries ago. They can be the words which change your future. Make them your words. Make a new beginning with God.

God's faithful love

“God sends His love and faithfulness” (Psalm 57:3). Whatever may be happening in our lives, let’s remember God’s faithful love. Let's will look beyond everything that's happening to us. Let's catch a glimpse of God’s presence and purpose. : God is there, and He is fulfilling His purpose of “love and faithfulness.” In Jesus Christ, the love and faithfulness of God are seen more clearly than anywhere else. Rejoicing in God’s faithful love, let us say, from our hearts, “Be exalted, O God, above the heavens; let your glory be over all the earth” (Psalm 57:5).

With God we shall gain the victory ...

"With God we shall gain the victory, and He will trample down our enemies" (Psalm 60:12). When, Lord, we're feeling defeated, Your Word gives us great encouragement. The battle isn't ours. It's Yours. The victory isn't ours. It's Yours. In the heat of the battle, You are our "strong tower against the enemy" (Psalm 61:3). When we're feeling the ferocity of Satan's hostility towards the truth of Your Word and the Gospel of Your grace, help us to remember that You, Lord, are "enthroned for ever" (Psalm 61:7).

Our Rock And Our Salvation

You, Lord, are "our rock and our salvation" (Psalm 62:2,6). We think of Your Son, Jesus Christ - the "Rock of our salvation" (1 Corinthians 10:1-4,16), and we say, "Your steadfast love is better than life ... I will praise You as long as I live" (Psalm 63:3-4). We look at Jesus, our great Saviour, and we say, "Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift" (2 Corinthians 9:15).

Praying Through God’s Word: 2 John

“Look to yourselves, that you may not lose what you have worked for, but may win a full reward” (2 John 8). Your work is at stake. Your glory is at stake. Help us, Lord, to keep on going. Help us not to give up. How dare we take it easy when You’re calling us to be earnest? Help us to be more committed to You. Your work will suffer, if we are half-hearted. Lord, help us to love You and serve You with our whole heart.

Praying Through God’s Word: Hebrews

Hebrews 1:1-2:9 We thank You, Lord, for Your Son, Jesus Christ. He is our Lord.  He came from heaven, where He is worshipped by angels (Hebrews 1:6). He is our Saviour. He came to earth where “He suffered death, so that, by the grace of God, He might taste death for everyone” (Hebrews 2:9). Help us, Lord, to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus – to catch a glimpse of His heavenly glory and His saving grace. Hebrews 2:10-3:19 We thank You, Lord, that You invite us to become Your “children” (Hebrews 2:13) – through faith in Your Son, Jesus (John 1:12). When we hear Your voice, calling us to come to Jesus, help us to open our hearts to Your love (Hebrews 3:7,15) – and receive Your Son as our Saviour. Hebrews 4:1-5:10 When, Lord, You speak Your Word to us, You say to us, “Do not harden your hearts” (Hebrews 4:7). These are words that we need to keep on hearing – again and again. This may not be what we like to hear – but it’s what we need to hear. Help us to hear what You’re saying, …

Praying Through God’s Word: James

James 1:1-27 Lord, there seems to be nothing but hard times. What are we to do? We turn to You. We ask You, “Lord, what are You teaching us?” You’re teaching us to trust You. You’re teaching us to be changed by You. Even when everything seems so hard, help us to pray, “Your will be done.” James 2:1-26 The world says one thing. Your Word says something else. Who are we to listen to? We know what our answer should be – but it’s not always the answer that we give to You. You’re speaking to us – and we’re not listening. Help us, Lord, to listen to You, to hear what Your Word is saying to us, and to become “rich in faith” (James 2:5). James 3:1-4:12 Lord, our words can be so fiery. We speak first – and think later. Help us, Lord, to be fired up by another fire – the fire of the Holy Spirit. Help us to speak with wisdom – “the wisdom that comes from above” (James 3:17-18). James 4:13-5:20 What’s going to happen next? We worry about things that might never happen. We imagine the wo…

Revised Common Lectionary - Year B

YEAR B First Sunday of Advent: Isaiah 64:1-9; Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19; 1 Corinthians 1:3-9; Mark 13:24-37 Jesus Christ is God’s Answer to our prayer. We confess our sins to God - ‘We sinned... All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags’. We look to God for forgiveness - ‘Do not remember our sins for ever’ (Isaiah 64:5-6, 9). We know that God hears and answers our prayer. Jesus Christ is God’s Answer to our prayer. He has ‘come down’ from heaven to earth. ‘The Son of the Most High’ has been ‘born’ into our world. Jesus Christ is God’s way of saying ‘Here am I! Here am I!’ He is ‘God with us’ (Isaiah 64:1; 65:1; Luke 1:32, 35; Matthew 1:23). ‘The blood of Jesus, God’s Son, cleanses us from all sin’. Let us ‘confess our sins’. ‘The blood of Jesus, God’s Son, cleanses us from all sin’- Let us come to God with faith, believing that He ‘will forgive our sins’. (1 John 1:7, 9). Let us rejoice in Jesus, our Saviour! We pray for salvation…