July 27 2009
Oh Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world: Spare me
Oh Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world: Pardon me
Oh Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world: Hear me.
Lord God, that today I will not forget my deep need for grace, nor your abundant depth of it. I thank you for granting Ann and I measurable success in our fitness efforts, and I ask you to continue to do so. Thank you for helping me learn self-discipline in the process. Lord, help this, your church, to see measurable successes from our efforts to follow you. We ask for your grace to cover our sins, and for your power to be in what we do.
As I begin to see the goal that I think I should work for, it is becoming easier to conceive of time in long amounts. The idea of spending several years to accomplish something seems far less daunting than it was even two years ago. I see this in Jacob and Leah and Rachel. I also see the idea of an intermediate reward. Jacob had to work a total of 14 years, but he received his reward, Rachel, half-way through, although he couldn't have left with her until the 14 were up. I wonder how often our setbacks would be followed by an intermediate reward if we didn't give up?
I wonder what James would say about our celebrity obsession in American Christianity? How we'll fall all over ourselves for Miss California or Mel Gibson or Tim Tebow, but for an ordinary Christian, we could hardly give consideration? What of young women who have chosen to honor God by keeping all of their clothes on? What of people that present the Gospel through relationships, not on the movie screen? What about for the Christian that overcame much adversity to be a clarinet player in the band, not a star quarterback? We may not automatically fly to the rich, but we will dance with joy over 1 celebrity while quietly ignoring a thousand ordinary people. Lord God, let me develop a love for everyone, from the famous to the infamous, and the totally non-famous in the middle.
Then there's the whole technology in church debate. Lord, keep me from being so overly techie that I lose the people in church that just aren't there. And I will strive to realize that worship and technology aren't either mutually exclusive or mutually necessary.
The whole law stands and falls together, and it is not for us to show favor for those who break the parts we don't mind against those who break the parts we dislike. We may not have pet sins that we'll ignore and pet sins that we'll disdain. As believers, we need to take a stand against all sin, especially in our own lives and the behavior of our churches.
Proverbs 27 (HCSB)
Proverbs 27:1 ->Don't boast about things you have no control over. Boast in the greatness of God instead. And remember, the world is incredibly unpredictable, though it is completely in God's hands.
Proverbs 27:2 ->As my old pappy used to say, “Don't break your arm patting yourself on the back.”
Proverbs 27:5 ->Let's live this one in our churches. Done with grace and consideration, love and truth, and based on God's standards. But let's quit keeping silent when correction is necessary.
Proverbs 27:7 → Modernized: Them that hath remarkable medical coverage, consider not those that will suffer at the hands of their legislation and change.
Proverbs 27:12 → What danger do you see? And are you just going to take it? Or will you take cover? What about we Americans? Will we take cover? Make preparations to deal with the danger?
Proverbs 27:13 → I think if we took people's clothes for going into debt, we'd have fewer financial collapses now, because who wants to roam about naked just for wanting a new car? Maybe this would be a good punishment for the people that wrote, approved, and profited from the bad loans and complex market derivatives. Take their clothes away. As my old pappy used to say, “I'll slap you naked and hide your clothes!”
Proverbs 27:14 → Be certain that what you intend to be a blessing is presented such that it is received that way.
Proverbs 27:17 → I need that iron.
Proverbs 27:18 → Look after your leaders. They'll look after you.
Proverbs 27:21 → How do you handle positives? That reveals a lot about you.
Psalm 86:10 → He alone is God! So, I need to quit acting like I'm trying out for his position.
1 Peter 2:10 → Peter's referencing Hosea, and God's promises of redemption and restoration. When we know the Word, we see how God has always been the same, and always been in the redemption business.
1 Peter 2:12 → There will always be slander of the church. Let's make sure it's about stuff we can be proud of. For example, let's have the world slander us for not being materialistic enough, for being too responsive to each other's needs, for, not being holier-than-thou, but for being too much like Christ.
May today be met with abundant effort towards obedience by me, and abundant grace for the task by Him. Lord God, let your power come in fullness on we your people, that we may do the tasks you have given.