Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Together we praise

The whole choir blesses God. Like a fountain of praise, Israel blesses God. ~ Psalm 68:26 (MSG)

May God, who gives this patience and encouragement, help you live in complete harmony with each other, as is fitting for followers of Christ Jesus. Then all of you can join together with one voice, giving praise and glory to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. ~ Romans 15:5-6 (NLT)

KEY IDEA:

Our goal as believers is to join together to praise God as a harmonious choir.
PRAYER:
Lord, you are worthy of all praise and honor. It's easy for me to say that. But sometimes it's not so easy to be praising you with all those other people around. I don't like the way that do music. Some of it is too old and boring. Some of it is too loud and annoying. They wave their hands and dance around. To my way of thinking this isn't the right way to honor you! But maybe the most important thing is that we work together to worship you. Maybe that's what brings you the most honor. Help me to adjust my worship goals and expectations. WE'RE going to give praise and glory to God. Amen.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The Lord defeats sorrow.

Lord, you saved me from death. You stopped my eyes from crying; you kept me from being defeated. ~ Psalm 116:8 (NCV)

In fact, he was so sick that he nearly died. But God had mercy on him—and not just on him but also on me, because his death would have caused me great sorrow. ~ Philippians 2:27 (CEB)

KEY IDEA:
The Lord defeats sorrow.
PRAYER:
Lord, thank you for being present with me when things make me really sad. You have had mercy on me, too. Since you are here I need you to help me focus less on the sorrow in my life. I don't want to deny those sad things happen. But sometimes I let those things define my life -- consume all my energy. Hold my hand. Make me strong. Fill me with your divine energy and confidence so that I can stand up and move forward. All glory to Christ Jesus who defeats death and all its allies. Amen.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Pray for leaders

I’ll give you good shepherd-rulers who rule my way, who rule you with intelligence and wisdom. ~ Jeremiah 3:15 (MSG)

The first thing I want you to do is pray. Pray every way you know how, for everyone you know. Pray especially for rulers and their governments to rule well so we can be quietly about our business of living simply, in humble contemplation. ~ 1 Timothy 2:1-2 (MSG)

KEY IDEA:
Ask God for wise leaders.
PRAYER:
Lord, you are the good shepherd -- the greatest leader ever. Thank you for appointing wise people to lead us -- if we'll ask. I confess, though, that it is far easier to complain -- to whine and moan -- about the leaders we have. Help me to change that -- to more often keep my mouth shut -- and to pray that the leaders would receive a miraculous dose of your wisdom. I am starting that right now -- asking you to fill those who lead with extreme wisdom and solid faith in you. Amen.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Love talk

The 7th Sunday after Pentecost

Don’t go on and on, talking so proudly, spouting arrogance from your mouth, because the Lord is the God who knows, and he weighs every act. ~ 1 Samuel 2:3 (CEB)

Our love should not be just words and talk; it must be true love, which shows itself in action. ~ 1 John 3:18 (GNT)

KEY IDEA:
The kind of love that the Lord recognizes is the kind which has more action than words.
PRAYER:
Lord, you created the universe through your Word. So you know the true power of words. We, however, and I'm thinking of me, are too casual with our words. We like to think that if we say a lot or write a lot on Facebook that we're pretty good people. But you know what is inside us and how it needs to come out to be real. Help me to focus more on loving actions and less on words that draw attention to me. I'm going to act with love -- the same as Jesus my sacrificing Savior. Amen.