Your Rescue Story

Everyone has the ability to be rescued from certain death and carried into all eternity in the arms of Jesus.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16 (NASB)

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Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

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Let’s Pray Together

Heavenly Father, we stand in your presence in awe of your awesome power and love.  We seek that which is your will in our lives and look forward to the return of your Son Jesus Christ.  Please Father, wrap your arms around each of us and provide for us all of our needs.  Forgive us Father, for all of our mistakes and failures in our pursuit of righteousness.  Develop in us the ability to also forgive those who disrupt our lives.  Open our eyes Father, to the enemy who is in pursuit of our souls.  Let us see clearly the evil trying to control our lives so that we can avoid destruction.  We offer this prayer in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

Your Rescue Story

(Less than 30 minutes total time)

We are all standing on a tiny ledge perched above jagged cliffs below, in the midst of total darkness, until that day when we reach out and take the hand of God.  Those who have trusted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior each have a profound personal rescue story to tell.  Those who are still searching and seeking, need only turn away from this world and walk toward Jesus.  Everyone has the opportunity to be rescued.  What is your rescue story?

“He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”  Colossians 1:13-14 (NASB)

God created each of us with the ability to accept or reject his offer of salvation.  Our inborn selfish nature prevents us from joining God in his eternal kingdom.  As a remedy, God sent his son to die on our behalf so that we might live.  When we admit our inadequacies and place our faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus, we regain our ability to live forever with God.

“He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”  2 Corinthians 5:21(NASB)

There is absolutely nothing we have to do to earn God’s favor other than love him with our whole heart and to reach out to others with that same love.  When we walk with Jesus, we are filled with the Holy Spirit that provides us direction, protection from evil, and an intimate connection to God.  There is no list of good deeds we need to accomplish to achieve salvation through Jesus Christ.  Salvation is a gift from God available to all – everyone has the ability to be rescued from certain death and carried into all eternity in the arms of Jesus.

“So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men.”  Romans 5:18 (NASB)

Praise God for sending his Son to rescue us all!  Praise God for your specific rescue story!  Praise God for those who still have the opportunity to be rescued from darkness and carried into the light!  None of us are worthy – all of us are eligible.  God knows you by name and prepared your rescue story before you were born.  Praise God now and forever!

Let this song fill your spirit.

Who Am I – Casting Crowns

Who am I, that the lord of all the earth

Would care to know my name

Would care to feel my hurt?

Who am I, that the bright and morning star

Would choose to light the way

For my ever wandering heart?

Not because of who I am

But because of what you’ve done

Not because of what I’ve done

But because of who you are

I am a flower quickly fading

Here today and gone tomorrow

A wave tossed in the ocean

A vapor in the wind

Still you hear me when I’m calling

Lord, you catch me when I’m falling

And you’ve told me who I am

I am yours

Who am I, that the eyes that see my sin

Would look on me with love

And watch me rise again?

Who am I, that the voice that calmed the sea

Would call out through the rain

And calm the storm in me?

Not because of who I am

But because of what you’ve done

Not because of what I’ve done

But because of who you are

I am a flower quickly fading

Here today and gone tomorrow

A wave tossed in the ocean

A vapor in the wind

Still you hear me when I’m calling

Lord, you catch me when I’m falling

And you’ve told me who I am

I am yours

Not because of who I am

But because of what you’ve done

Not because of what I’ve done

But because of who you are

I am a flower quickly fading

Here today and gone tomorrow

A wave tossed in the ocean

A vapor in the wind

Still you hear me when I’m calling

Lord, you catch me when I’m falling

And you’ve told me who I am

I am yours

I am yours

I am yours

Whom shall I fear, whom shall I fear?

‘Cause I am yours

I am yours

Worth Fighting For

Often, after we’ve been rescued, we continue to struggle with life in this world.  There is a myth among some, that the Christian life is a life of endless comfort – this is not the case for most.  Our time spent in this world is purposefully difficult.  God is using our life in this world to teach us everything we need to know to join him in our eternal life to come.  Central to our instruction is the battle between good and evil.  We need to be masters over the darkness and deliverers of the light.

“You were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light.”  Ephesians 5:8 (NASB)

Followers of Jesus are part of the constant battle between good and evil – darkness and light.  We will be pushed around and challenged in many different ways as a result.  While this can be quite difficult at times, there is great value in fighting this battle – our reward in heaven is unimaginable.  Our eternal existence with God in His kingdom will be never-ending.  Our time spent in this world will eventually be completely forgotten.

“Momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison.”  2 Corinthians 4:17 (NASB)

Every battle we face builds our spiritual character.  Just like an athlete who endures a painful workout in order to achieve victory, we must also be willing to fight for our life to come.  Indeed, our fight is not only for our eternal existence, but we are at the same time fighting for each other, as we all stand toe-to-toe with the evil that permeates this world.  Together, we will without question, eventually achieve victory.

“We also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”  Romans 5:3-5 (NASB)

Ultimately, this fight has already been won.  God fought for us by sending His Son to die on our behalf.  As a result, the devil no longer has the power of death over our lives.  Just as Jesus conquered death, we too have been granted that ability when we placed our faith in Him.  God has an awesome future planned for us as long as we keep fighting on his behalf as he did for us.

Let this song penetrate your heart.

Worth Fighting For – Brian Courtney Wilson

You met me deep in my despair to show me you

Would never leave me there you claimed

Be’Cause I was made for so much more

I am your child and I’m worth fighting for

Though heavy with the weight of my mistakes

You carried me and refused to let me sink under the pressure

You meant for me to soar. I am your child

And I’m worth fighting for. eyes haven’t seen

Ears haven’t heard all you have planned

For me and nothing can separate me from

Your love when there’s so much

More still worth fighting for

Now I’m moving by faith and not by

Site towards victory by the power of your might

You’re straightening out my past and opening

Every door I am your child and I’m worth fighting for

Eyes haven’t seen ears haven’t heard

All you have planned for me and nothing

Can separate me from your love when

There’s so much more still worth fighting for

That’s why I’m pressing

It’s worth it

Towards the mark

‘Cause the calling

On my life is worth fighting for

And I’ll keep my mind

stayed on you Jesus

Because the peace it brings is worth fighting for

And I’ll be faithful, for my wife and children

because my family

Is worth fighting for

No this world

is not my home

But your kingdom

Here is worth fighting for

I got a mansion

Over in glory

And my new home is worth fighting for

Til I see it I’ll shout

Hallelujah, hallelujah

Life with you is worth fighting for

Oh fighting for

Eyes haven’t seen. ears haven’t heard

All you have planned for me

There is so much more still worth fighting for

We Are Nothing Without Jesus

Without being rescued by Jesus, we are nothing.  Without Jesus, we are lost in this world.  Without Jesus, we are deep in darkness.  If you have not trusted Jesus as your Lord and Savior, now is a perfect time to consider that option.  There is no hope for the lost, and even though those of us who are walking with Jesus continue to fight a difficult battle, we have enormous hope.  We have hope for all eternity and hope for the bright moments in this life that God delivers to his children on a daily basis.

“I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.”  John 15:5(NASB)

It is our connection to Jesus that brings us joy and gives us the strength to deal with difficult times.  What a joy it is to overcome evil when it confronts us in our lives.  We have that power through our relationship with Jesus.  What a joy it is to share the love of God with others.  What a joy it is to be blessed with loving friends and family.  What a joy it is to live a life supported by the power of the Holy Spirit.  We owe everything to Jesus.

“Though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls.”  1 Peter 1:8-9(NASB)

God has provided us with the opportunity to travel from death to life.  No matter where we came from, God was ready to take us in and provide us the rescue needed to save our souls.  Nothing can compare to the love God has for his children.  Nothing can compare to the sacrifice Jesus made on our behalf.  Nothing in this world is of any value in the world beyond.  Our love for God, demonstrated in our loving service to others, is the only thing that matters in this world and throughout all eternity.  Praise God for his awesome love and his willingness to rescue us all.

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.”  1 Peter 1:3-5 (NASB)

Let this song lift your spirit.

Rescue Story – Zach Williams

There I was empty-handed

Crying out from the pit of my despair

There You were in the shadows

Holding out Your hand You met me there

And now where would I be without You?

Where would I be, Jesus?

You were the voice in the desert

Calling me out in the dead of night

Fighting my battles for me

You are my rescue story

Lifted me up from the ashes

Carried my soul from death to life

Bringing me from glory to glory

You are my rescue story

You are, You are

You are my rescue story

You are, You are

You were writing the pages

Before I had a name

Before I needed grace, oh

Singing songs of redemption

‘Cause every time I ran away

You were louder than my shame

And now where would I be without You?

Where would I be, Jesus?

You were the voice in the desert

Calling me out in the dead of night

Fighting my battles for me

You are my rescue story

Lifted me up from the ashes

Carried my soul from death to life

Bringing me from glory to glory

You are my rescue story

You never gave up on me

You never gave up on me

You are my testimony, ohh, oh-ohh

You never gave up on me

You never gave up on me

You are my testimony, ohh, oh-ohh

You never gave up on me

Oh, You never gave up on me

Oh, this is my testimony

Oh, You were the voice in the desert

Calling me out in the dead of night

Fighting my battles for me

You are my rescue story

Lifted me up from the ashes

Carried my soul from death to life

Bringing me from glory to glory

‘Cause You are my rescue story

You are, You are (You are my rescue story)

Oh, You never gave up on me, never gave up on me

You are, You are

Yeah, You are my rescue story

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

Finding Peace

When we put God first there’s no room for the devil’s deception.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16 (NASB)

________________________________________

Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

________________________________________

Let’s Pray Together

Heavenly Father, we stand in your presence in awe of your awesome power and love.  We seek that which is your will in our lives and look forward to the return of your Son Jesus Christ.  Please Father, wrap your arms around each of us and provide for us all of our needs.  Forgive us Father, for all of our mistakes and failures in our pursuit of righteousness.  Develop in us the ability to also forgive those who disrupt our lives.  Open our eyes Father, to the enemy who is in pursuit of our souls.  Let us see clearly the evil trying to control our lives so that we can avoid destruction.  We offer this prayer in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

Finding Peace

(Less than 30 minutes total time)

Make no mistake about it, each and every one of us is part of the daily battle between good and evil.  Evil is everything that pushes us away from God.  Evil is the worldly deception that panders to our selfish desires.  Evil is that overwhelming urge to have more.

 “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”  Romans 12:21 (NASB)

The antidote for all things evil is the loving heart that God provides.  When we reach out to others with a helping hand, we step around evil and shield ourselves with good.  When we put God first, there’s no room for the devil’s deception.  Unfortunately, the world we live in is often hostile toward good – mocking those who do the right thing and supporting those who accumulate wealth through selfish schemes.  Who we hang out with can make a big difference in our effort to fight evil.

“Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good morals.”  1 Corinthians 15:33(NASB)

As followers of Jesus Christ, it’s important to engage the lost in meaningful conversations and friendships.  At the same time, we need to protect ourselves from those who might lead us astray.  Those who are more concerned with others than themselves are moving in the right direction.  Those who are more concerned with themselves rather than others, are lost and need our guidance.

“Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.”  Philippians 2:3-4(NASB)

As we travel through this fragile battleground our only hope is in our connection to Jesus.  Our human nature is prone to wander off in the wrong direction if we don’t keep Christ as our guiding light and the savior of our soul.

Let this song fill your spirit.

Lord of My Life – Matt Maher

A sky without a North Star

A ship without an anchor

Caught up in the current

My heart is prone to wander

All the roads I’ve taken

Lead me back to nowhere

You’re the destination

You’re the way to get there

You can have it all

Be the song I sing

Be my guiding light

Savior of my soul

Be the Lord of my life

Every step I take

Always by my side

I am yours, You are mine

Be the Lord of my life

Mercies never failing

Forgiveness overflowing

The love that You’re unveiling

A beauty just keeps growing

This is all I want

I surrender all

Be the song I sing

Be my guiding light

Savior of my soul

Be the Lord of my life

Every step I take

Always by my side

I am yours, You are mine

Be the Lord of my life

I wanna go where you go

Wanna move where you move

Wanna love who you love

Watch it break on through

Be the song I sing

Be my guiding light

Savior of my soul

Be the Lord of my life

Every step I take

Always by my side

I am yours, You are mine

Be the Lord of my life

I am yours, You are mine

Be the Lord of my life

I am yours, You are mine

Be the Lord of my life

Finding Peace in Jesus

As the battle between good and evil rages on, we find comfort and peace in the arms of Jesus.  The closer we are to Jesus the more peace we experience.  To that end, our primary objective has to be following carefully in his footsteps.  When we follow the teaching of Jesus, we connect with the spirit of God in a special way.

 “Let no one seek his own good, but that of his neighbor.”  1 Corinthians 10:24 (NASB)

When we spend time taking care of our own needs at the expenses of others, there is often a feeling of guilt that follows.  On the other hand, when we spend time serving others, we experience joy and a sense of peace unlike any other – this is because we are fulfilling the teaching of Jesus.

 “Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.”  Galatians 6:2(NASB)

The evil forces in this world want us to feel good about satisfying ourselves.  God wants us to satisfy ourselves by satisfying others.  This simple equation can be found repeated many times in the pages of the Bible and is a central theme in the life of Jesus.

“And do not neglect doing good and sharing, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.”  Hebrews 13:16 (NASB)

Our mission as Christians is to live for Jesus.  We accomplish this mission by structuring our lives in the manner prescribed to us in the pages of the Bible.  By trusting in Jesus and him alone, we cannot be shaken by the darkness of this world.  A peace that surpasses all comprehension (Philippians 4:7) will fill our hearts when we put ourselves aside and get busy doing something for God.

Let this song sink into your soul.

Build My Life – Pat Barrett

Worthy of every song we could ever sing

Worthy of all the praise we could ever bring

Worthy of every breath we could ever breathe

We live for you

Jesus the name above every other name

Jesus the only one who could ever save

Worthy of every breath we could ever breathe

We live for you

Oh we live for you

Holy there is no one like you

There is none beside you

Open up my eyes in wonder

Show me who you are and fill me

With your heart and lead me

In your love to those around me

Jesus the name above every other name

Jesus the only one who could ever save

Worthy of every breath we could ever breathe

We live for you

Oh we live for you

Holy there is no one like you

There is none beside you

Open up my eyes in wonder

And show me who you are and fill me

With your heart and lead me

In your love to those around me

And I will build my life upon your love it is a firm foundation

And I will put my trust in you alone

And I will not be shaken

And I will build my life upon your love it is a firm foundation

And I will put my trust in you alone

And I will not be shaken

Holy there is no one like you

There is none beside you

Open up my eyes in wonder

And show me who you are and fill me

With your heart and lead me

In your love to those around me

And I will build my life upon your love it is a firm foundation

And I will put my trust in you alone

And I will not be shaken

And I will build my life upon your love it is a firm foundation

And I will put my trust in you alone

And I will not be shaken

Our Plan of Action

Nothing happens in our lives until we take a step forward and put our plan into action.  Following Jesus is not a passive endeavor.  Every moment of every day is an opportunity to take hold of the teachings of Jesus and put them into practice.

“But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does.”  James 1:25 (NASB)

Every step we take closer to Jesus brings us one step closer to the peace-filled life we all crave.  Showing appreciation for loved ones on a regular basis is one of the ways we follow the teachings of Jesus.  Asking those in need how we might be of help rather than simply offering to pray is another step closer to Jesus.  Working together with others to provide assistance to those in need, is yet another way we can bring about the peace that serving others provides.

 “Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth.”  1 John 3:18 (NASB)

The darkness of this world will try to convince us we don’t have time for anyone else’s needs, but that’s a lie.  The darkness of this world wants us to believe we need to spend more time taking care of our own needs if we want to be happy – that’s also a lie.  We know these are lies because our experience demonstrates these things to be untrue.  When we get busy doing God’s work, the devil’s lies drift away.

“In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”  Acts 20:35 (NASB)

No one else can do what God has called you to do.  You have been placed where you are by God.  You have been given special talents and resources by God.  God intends for you to use your talents and resources to serve those around you to his glory.

Let this song inspire you to do more.

Do Something – Matthew West

I woke up this morning

Saw a world full of trouble now, thought

How’d we ever get so far down, and

How’s it ever gonna turn around

So I turned my eyes to Heaven

I thought, “God, why don’t You do something?”

Well, I just couldn’t bear the thought of

People living in poverty

Children sold into slavery

The thought disgusted me

So, I shook my fist at Heaven

Said, “God, why don’t You do something?”

He said, “I did, yeah, I created you” (now listen)

If not us, then who

If not me and you

Right now, it’s time for us to do something, yeah

If not now, then when

Will we see an end

To all this pain

Oh, it’s not enough to do nothing

It’s time for us to do something

I’m so tired of talking about

How we are God’s hands and feet

But it’s easier to say than to be

Live like angels of apathy who tell ourselves

It’s alright, “somebody else will do something”

Well, I don’t know about you

But I’m sick and tired of life with no desire

I don’t want a flame, I want a fire and

I wanna be the one who stands up and says

“I’m gonna do something”

If not us, then who

If not me and you

Right now, it’s time for us to do something, yes it is, come on

If not now, then when

Will we see an end

To all this pain

Oh oh, it’s not enough to do nothing

It’s time for us to do something

We are the salt of the earth

We are a city on a hill

We’re never gonna change the world

By standing still

No, we won’t stand still

No

If not us, then who

If not me and you

Right now

It’s time for us to do something

If not now, then when

Will we see an end

To all this pain

It’s not enough to do nothing

It’s time for us to do something

It’s time for us to do something

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

The Rational Bible: Exodus

Dennis Prager has been teaching the Bible to people of all religions for over forty years.  His primary focus has been on the first five books of the Bible, known as the Torah.  The “Rational Bible” series is the culmination of that effort and an awesome resource for people interested in a deeper understanding of these founding documents of the Judeo-Christian faith.  As a faithful Jewish man, one might assume Prager’s perspective will be in some ways hostile to Christian believers; however, that is not at all the case.  In his introduction to the series, Prager acknowledges some of his greater understanding of the Torah comes from Christian Bible scholars.

In this series, Prager approaches the material with the intent to explain every element in rational terms, hence the commentary title.  As you read through the pages of this commentary, you will be skillfully guided in historical facts, a deeper understanding of the original language used in the writing, and how it all fits together.  Nothing needs to be accepted by faith alone; everything is carefully explained and made easy to understand.

Prager begins his series with the second book of the Bible, Exodus, because he considers it to be more informative in regards to life, law, and theology.  The book of Exodus contains the Ten Commandments, which is considered by Prager, and all Christians, to be the most important moral code in world history.

Exodus is the only volume of this series I have read to date and I look forward to completing the other four volumes.  The Rational Bible: Exodus is an easy-to-read book that makes complex details thoroughly enjoyable.  Prager writes in a comfortable, conversational style that flows seamlessly from one topic to the next.  Prager is a master of opening up the mind to deeper thought and a broader range of understanding.  Every Christian should be interested in the perspective of a Jewish man and his understanding of the Torah – Jesus was a Jewish man who was fully observant of the Torah law.

Overcomer

Our biggest problems are often minuscule when compared to the problems of others.  Sometimes, our most difficult emotional challenges are nothing more than selfish desire standing in the way of God’s clear direction.  We live in a complicated world that frequently requires us to go beyond the superficial to reach the truth.  This is the case for high school basketball coach and history teacher John Harrison.  When his chances for building a winning basketball team fall apart, John is pushed in a new direction – he is called by God for a higher purpose.

As the result of a local manufacturing plant closing and all of his star players moving out of town, John’s chances of victory drift away.   In addition, staff cuts at his school make it necessary for him to coach the cross country team for which he has only one runner, Hannah Scott, who happens to have asthma.  John’s self-pity is push aside when he discovers Hannah’s estranged father is a patient in the local hospital.  Hannah, who is being raised by her grandmother, believed both her parents were dead, but it turns out her father is still alive.  The reason for the confusion is Hannah’s grandmother, who hates Hannah’s father, and has therefore perpetuated this lie.  John’s assignment becomes finding a way to reunite Hannah with her father who is now a deeply regretful Christian man fighting a life threating disease.  The stumbling block is of course Hanna’s grandmother, who does not want this reunion to take place.

Overcomer, is a complex story with a beautifully crafted story structure.  Every character is fully developed and plays an important role in the overall drama.  The acting is exceptional, the music is wonderfully crafted, and the complete production is a textbook example of fine filmmaking.  The Kendrick brothers have made several successful faith-based films; Overcomer, in my view, is by far their best effort.  My harshest criticism would be that they are sometimes a little heavy handed in their emotional pandering, but that’s a forgivable overindulgence when it works, and in this case it does.  This is a thoughtful and deeply satisfying film.

God is Good

The endless love of God is the awesome power that fuels the universe.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16 (NASB)

________________________________________

Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

________________________________________

Let’s Pray Together

Father God, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, we worship and adore you.  Fill our hearts with that which is your will and control our steps as we celebrate your approaching kingdom.  We look to you for all our basic needs and thank you for all that you provide.  Please forgive us Father for all the mistakes we make along the way and soften our hearts so that we may forgive others.  Keep us safe from the enemy who wanders about looking to devour our souls.  Fill our minds with your wisdom and our hearts with your love.  We ask these things in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

God is Good

(Less than 30 minutes total time)

Each and every person created by God is completely unique – including you.  We each travel our own personal path in this world.  We have been designed by God to be dependent on him, not as a punishment, but as an act of love.  We become one with God when we acknowledge that dependency.  We are then transformed spiritually and filled with the Holy Spirit.  This transformation grants us victory over the demonic powers of this world.

“But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.”  Ephesians 2:4-7(NASB)

When we trust in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ for our salvation, we, like Jesus, are born again into a new life – an eternal life.

“For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit.”  1 Peter 3:18 (NASB)

As reborn spiritual beings, we travel through this life in search of truth, following the light of Jesus.  Our ultimate goal is to witness the return of Jesus, either in this life or in our life to come.  When Jesus returns to establish his kingdom, the whole world will witness the event.

“For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God.”  1 Thessalonians 4:16 (NASB)

It was God’s never-ending love that sent his Son to die on the cross on our behalf.  It was the resurrection of Jesus that demonstrated his power over death and confirmed our salvation.  Now we stand ready for the glorious day of his return.

Let this song confirm your understanding.

Glorious Day (Living He Loved Me) – Casting Crowns

One day when Heaven was filled with His praises

One day when sin was as black as could be

Jesus came forth to be born of a virgin

Dwelt among men, my example is He

One day they led Him up Calvary’s mountain

One day they nailed Him to die on a tree

Suffering anguish, despised and rejected

Bearing our sins, my Redeemer is He

Hands that healed nations, stretched out on a tree

And took the nails for me

Living, He loved me

Dying, He saved me

Buried, He carried my sins far away

Rising, He justified freely forever

One day He’s coming

Oh glorious day, oh glorious day

One day the grave could conceal Him no longer

One day the stone rolled away from the door

Then He arose, over death He had conquered

Now is ascended, my Lord evermore

Death could not hold Him, the grave could not keep Him

From rising again

Living, He loved me

Dying, He saved me

Buried, He carried my sins far away

Rising, He justified freely forever

One day He’s coming

Oh glorious day, oh glorious day

One day the trumpet will sound for His coming

One day the skies with His glories will shine

Wonderful day, my Beloved One bringing

My Savior Jesus is mine

Living, He loved me

Dying, He saved me

Buried, He carried my sins far away

Rising, He justified freely forever

One day He’s coming

Oh glorious day, oh glorious day

Glorious day

Oh glorious day

The Love of God

As members of God’s spiritual family, followers of Jesus Christ are known as children of God.  There is no better place to be than in the loving arms of our God.  To the uninformed – those who have turned their back on God – Christians appear to be foreigners.  This is as it should be.

“See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are. For this reason the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.”  1 John 3:1 (NASB)

Followers of Jesus Christ are members of the Christian community and demonstrate their faith by loving others.  By acknowledging our sinful nature and trusting in Jesus, we are transformed into receptacles of God’s love and it is our duty to share that love.

“We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.”  1 John 4:16(NASB)

Love is the true sign of a follower of Jesus.  Many signs and wonders have passed through the church; however, love is the only one that remains constant.  Love is the engine that drives our relationship with God.

“Love never fails; but if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be done away.”  1 Corinthians 13:8 (NASB)

The endless love of God is the awesome power that fuels the universe.  There is no greater force, or power, or guiding principle.  Love is central to understanding, worshiping, and knowing God.

Let this song fill your spirit.

One Thing Remains – Jesus Culture

God is Good

Jesus identifies our God as the only One who is truly good.  Right and wrong are established by God.  Our salvation is delivered through God’s mercy.  Our eternal life is a gift from God.

“And He said to him, “Why are you asking Me about what is good? There is only One who is good; but if you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.”  Matthew 19:17 (NASB)

God’s goodness is the foundation on which we stand as Christians.  When we trust God, when we seek to follow his commands, when we fill our hearts with his love, we find shelter from the dark world around us.

“O taste and see that the Lord is good; how blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him!”  Psalm 34:8 (NASB)

Every unique individual created by God has access to his grace and his awesome love.  No one is excluded from experiencing the goodness of God.

“The Lord is good to all, and His mercies are over all His works.”  Psalm 145:9(NASB)

From now until the end of time, God will be with us guiding our every step.  As followers of Jesus Christ, we have a special relationship with God that transcends the understanding of those who have turned their back on God; nevertheless, God is still available to those lost souls.  God’s love never fails and never gives up.  God’s desire is for all to turn to him and accept his warm embrace.  Our mission as Christians is to point the way to the goodness of God.

Let this song lift your spirit.

You Are Good – Israel Houghton

Lord, You are good

And Your mercy endureth forever

Lord, You are good

And Your mercy endureth forever

People from every nation and tongue

From generation to generation

We worship you

Hallelujah, Hallelujah

We worship you for who you are

We worship you

Hallelujah, Hallelujah

We worship you for who you are

Who you are, who you are

You are good

You are good all the time

All the time You are good

You are good all the time

All the time You are good

You are good all the time

All the time You are good

You are good all the time

All the time You are good

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

Beyond Tomorrow

Everything God puts in front of you was designed specifically for your personal development.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16 (NASB)

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Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

________________________________________

Let’s Pray Together

Father God, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, we worship and adore you.  Fill our hearts with that which is your will and control our steps as we celebrate your approaching kingdom.  We look to you for all our basic needs and thank you for all that you provide.  Please forgive us Father for all the mistakes we make along the way and soften our hearts so that we may forgive others.  Keep us safe from the enemy who wanders about looking to devour our souls.  Fill our minds with your wisdom and our hearts with your love.  We ask these things in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

Beyond Tomorrow

(Less than 30 minutes total time)

When we fall to our knees and let God know we fully depend on him and seek only that which is his will in our lives, we establish an unconditional bond that will carry us through our entire life.  No matter how difficult your life becomes, God is with you.  Even though there may be tremendous struggle, you cannot fall – you are protected by God.

“Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.”  1 Peter 5:6-7 (NASB)

Your relationship with God was planned well in advance.  You have an assignment from God that includes difficult and challenging life experiences.  It is your love for God, expressed in love for others that will carry you over every hurdle.

“You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.”  John 15:16 (NASB)

Of course, our ultimate gift from God is our salvation, granted by the grace of God, and delivered through our faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  We are new creations with a profoundly personal connection to God and a completely different view of the world around us.

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” 1 Peter 1:3(NASB)

When the ominous shadow of trouble crosses our path, we stand firm and look to our Father for the strength to endure.  Time after time we find him there waiting with outstretched arms.  Without fail, our heavenly Father is always there when we need him.

Let this song strengthen your soul.

Run To The Father – Matt Maher

I’ve carried a burden

For too long on my own

I wasn’t created

To bear it alone

I hear Your invitation

To let it all go

I see it now

I’m laying it down

And I know that I need You

I run to the Father

I fall into grace

I’m done with the hiding

No reason to wait

My heart needs a surgeon

My soul needs a friend

So I’ll run to the Father

Again and again

And again and again

Oh, oh, oh

You saw my condition

Had a plan from the start

Your Son for redemption

The price for my heart

And I don’t have a context

For that kind of love

I don’t understand

I can’t comprehend

All I know is I need You

I run to the Father

I fall into grace

I’m done with the hiding

No reason to wait

My heart needs a surgeon

My soul needs a friend

So I’ll run to the Father

Again and again

And again and again

Oh, oh, again and again

And again and again

Oh, oh

My heart has been in Your sights

Long before my first breath

Running into Your arms

Is running to life from death

And I feel this rush deep in my chest

Your mercy is calling out

Just as I am You pull me in

And I know I need You now

I run to the Father

I fall into grace

I’m done with the hiding

No reason to wait

My heart needs a surgeon

My soul needs a friend

So I’ll run to the Father

Again and again

I run to the Father

I fall into grace

I’m done with the hiding

No reason to wait

And my heart found a surgeon

My soul found a friend

So I’ll run to the Father

Again and again

And again and again

Oh, oh, again and again

And again and again

Oh, oh, oh

Again and again

No More Worries

Worries are like snowballs that grow larger as they roll downhill toward tomorrow.  When we rest in the capable hands of God, we dispatch each worry immediately upon its arrival preventing it from expanding our problems.  Knowing that God is on our side makes tomorrow a non-event.

“So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”  Matthew 6:34 (NASB)

Everything created by God, including you, has tremendous value to him.  He keeps meticulous track of all of his creation.  Each individual element of God’s creation has an indispensable component in the overall machine.  Nothing can be harmed or removed without damaging the mechanism to a point of inoperability.  God is keeping tracking of every minute detail and you can be certain that your circumstance is precisely what is needed at this moment in time.

“Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So do not fear; you are more valuable than many sparrows.”  Matthew 10:29-31(NASB)

We accomplish nothing by worrying.  Spending time in prayer is a far more productive use of our time.  When we humbly stand before God with deep appreciation for all he has done in our lives, he is more than ready to hear our petition and to render onto us all that is needed.

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”  Philippians 4:6 (NASB)

There is nothing that can’t be made right by God.  There is no injustice that will not be corrected by God.  There is absolutely no need for concern when God is on your side.

Let this song lift your spirit.

Sparrows – Jason Gray

Keep a Smile on Your Face

In every moment of struggle you can know for certain that God is using that experience to build your spiritual character.  Like a world-class athletic coach, God knows precisely what you need to develop into the best version of yourself.  Everything God puts in front of you was designed specifically for your personal development.

“Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.”  James 1:2-3 (NASB)

No matter what comes our way, it pales in comparison to what is to come.  No matter what comes our way it is of no consequence in our relationship with God.  As followers of Jesus Christ, we have been granted eternal life in the kingdom of heaven.  Our love for God makes it possible for us to share that love with others regardless of any obstacles placed in our path.  While troubles may persists in this world, they are meaningless whispers in the world that is to come.

“Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”  2 Corinthians 4:16-18 (NASB)

When we stand firm in our love for God, demonstrating our sincerity through loving service to others, the fruits of our labor will be abundant.  When we let go of ourselves and seek to follow Jesus, we are clearly on the path to victory.

“Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win.”  1 Corinthians 9:24 (NASB)

When we run in the footsteps of Jesus, there is nothing that can defeat our effort.  There isn’t any obstacle standing in our way that can’t be overcome when we follow the teachings of Jesus.  As a follower of Jesus, it doesn’t matter what’s going on in your life at this moment – in the end – you win!

Let this song lift your spirit.

We Win – MercyMe

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

Revival

Revival is an outpouring of God’s love through believers that travels into unbelievers.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16 (NASB)

________________________________________

Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

________________________________________

Let’s Pray Together

Almighty Creator of the universe, watching over us all, we praise your holy name.  Guide us toward your approaching kingdom as loyal followers of your every desire.  Thank you for all that you provide in our lives.  Bless us Father with your goodness and mercy, as we stumble our way through this life, and provide us with the ability to bless others in the same manner.  Keep our minds ever vigilant to the disruptive powers of the evil one.  Guide us on a path that avoids destruction.  You alone are our protector and deliverer.  We ask these things in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

Revival

(Less than 30 minutes total time)

Those who have trusted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, by placing their faith in his death and resurrection as payment for their sinful nature, are granted eternal life in the kingdom of heaven.  That’s the simple message of Christianity.  Beyond salvation, is a life lived here on earth as a follower of Jesus.  On our way to the kingdom of heaven, we have to travel through this life in preparation for our eternal existence with God.  The purpose of our time spent in this life is spiritual development.  God has given us this life in order to grow in the Lord – in knowledge and in experience.

This life is where we learn the difference between good and evil.  To that end, God has populated this world with believers and unbelievers.  As believers, our goal is to guide the unbelievers into the footsteps of Jesus.  Sometimes we can do that with words, but the most effective tool for bringing the lost to the saving knowledge of Jesus is through our actions.  Revival – a great awakening of unbelievers – is not likely to materialize as a result of wonderful sermons or well written evangelical messages; revival is more likely to come about as a result of Christians demonstrating their love of God by serving others with that same love.

“We love, because He first loved us. If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves God should love his brother also.”  1 John 4:19-21(NASB)

Jesus was the ultimate servant who walked the earth serving others, eventually giving up his life for all humanity.  When believers demonstrate that same servant’s spirit, unbelievers see the life of Jesus reflected and seek to know him as well.  People find hope in the loving spirit of Jesus brought to life through sacrificial service to others.  When help arrives, fear is diminished.  When we stand together helping on another, we have unlimited strength.  Revival will be born out of service to others.

When Jesus returned to Jerusalem on his way to the cross, the crowds welcomed him shouting “Hosanna” which is a cry for salvation from God.  They knew Jesus was declaring himself to be the Messiah and they were calling on him to deliver them from their Roman oppressors.  At this point, they did not fully understand how far Jesus was willing to go on their behalf.

Let this song lift your spirit.

Hosanna – Paul Baloche

Praise is rising, eyes are turning to You, we turn to You

Hope is stirring, hearts are yearning for You, we long for You

‘Cause when we see You, we find strength to face the day

In Your Presence all our fears are washed away, washed away

Hosanna, hosanna

You are the God Who saves us, worthy of all our praises

Hear the sound of hearts returning to You, we turn to You

In Your Kingdom broken lives are made new, You make us new

‘Cause when we see You, we find strength to face the day

In Your Presence all our fears are washed away, washed away

Hosanna, hosanna

You are the God Who saves us, worthy of all our praises

Hosanna, hosanna

Come have Your way among us

We welcome You here, Lord Jesus

‘Cause when we see You, we find strength to face the day

In Your Presence all our fears are washed away

Hosanna, hosanna

You are the God Who saves us, worthy of all our praises

Hosanna, hosanna

Come have Your way among us

We welcome You here, Lord Jesus

Surrender to God

The world we live in has a way of turning unbelievers against God.  Sometimes unbelievers feel they are in a battle against a God that is trying to force them into a lifestyle they don’t understand.  The truth is, there is no battle with God; the battle is with the evil forces of this world and the spiritual world beyond.

“Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.”  Ephesians 6:12 (NASB)

Those “spiritual forces of wickedness” have a great deal of control over this world.  Their main weapon is deception.  They convince unbelievers it’s best to turn your back on God or aggressively resist him at all cost.  When Christians demonstrate God’s love with a servant’s heart toward unbelievers, they will begin to realize their real fight is with the devil.

“Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.”  James 4:7 (NASB)

Revival will take hold when Christians live their lives filled with the fruits of the spirit – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23).  In so doing, unbelievers will see the dramatic contrast between this world and the life of a follower of Jesus Christ.

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.”  Romans 12:2 (NASB)

Revival begins when unbelievers lay down their weapons and surrender to God.  Believers move closer to God when they give all of their life to Jesus by living as a servant to others.

Let this song speak to your heart.

White Flag – Chris Tomlin – Passion 2012

The battle rages on

As storm and tempest roar

We cannot win this fight

Inside our rebel hearts

We’re laying down our weapons now

We raise our white flag

We surrender

All to You

All for You

We raise our white flag

The war is over

Love has come

Your love has won

Here on this Holy ground

You made a way for peace

Laying your body down

You took our rightful place

This freedom song is marching on

We raise our white flag

We surrender

All to You

All for You

We raise our white flag

The war is over

Love has come

Your love has won

Your love has won

We lift the cross

Lift it high lift it high [x8]

We raise our white flag

We surrender

All to You

All for You

We raise our white flag

The war is over

Love has come

Your love has won

We raise our white flag

We surrender

All to You

All for You

We raise our white flag

The war is over

Love has come

Your love has won

We lift the cross

Lift it high lift it high [x4]

Walk in the Light

When we trust Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we are given a newly awakened spiritual and eternal life.  All the darkness found in this world is fully illuminated when we begin a relationship with Jesus.

“Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.”  John 8:12(NASB)

Believers are transformed by the light of Jesus; when this transformation is fully matured, that light is reflected in the good deeds done in service to others.  The recipients of those good deeds are also washed in the light of Jesus.

“You were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light.”  Ephesians 5:8 (NASB)

This light is the true source of revival.  It is the light of Jesus that will bring about a great awakening of unbelievers.  His light shining down from heaven, through believers, and into the lives of unbelievers is the generating force of revival.

“Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.”  James 1:17(NASB)

Revival is an outpouring of God’s love through believers that travels into unbelievers.  This can be accomplished individually, as a group, or through an entire church congregation.  God’s love is flowing through the hearts of every believer and his light is shining in the darkness for all to see.  It’s up to those of us who have trusted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior to share his love and light with the world.

Let this song lift your spirit.

God Of Brilliant Lights – Aaron Shust

Come and break through the darkness

Come and break through the darkness God

Your love is like an ocean

Sing it out, shout it loud

Cover all the earth

Let the sound of the saints

Everywhere be heard

Praise the God who has come

To cure every broken heart

He is lord over all

His reign will never end

Through the fire and the flood

He draws his children in

He’s the light of the world

Brighter than the brightest star

The god of brilliant lights

Is shining down over us

Breaking through the darkness

Covering all the earth

Oooh, his love is like an ocean

Oooh, forever overflowing

The god of brilliant lights is shining over us

Sinners come to the cross

And lay your troubles down

At the feet of the one whose mercy will abound

He’s not afraid of our filth

He will never turn away

The god of brilliant lights

Is shining down over us

Breaking through the darkness

Covering all the earth

Oooh, his love is like an ocean

Oooh, forever overflowing

The god of brilliant lights is shining over us

Is shining over us

Like the morning rises

God your light is shining

Shining over us

Is shining over us

Like the morning rises

God your light is shining

Shining over us, shining

Is shining over us, shining

Like the morning rises

God Your light is shining over us

The god of brilliant lights is shining down over us

Breaking through the darkness

Covering all the earth

Oooh, His love is like an ocean

Oooh, forever overflowing

Oooh, His love is overtaking

Oooh, we’ll never be forsaken

The god of brilliant lights

Oh, the god of brilliant lights

Is shining over us

He’s shining over us

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

Here I Am To Worship

As we stand before God with our praise, worshiping his holy name, we surrender our soul into his hands.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16 (NASB)

________________________________________

Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

________________________________________

Let’s Pray Together

Heavenly Father, we stand in your presence in awe of your awesome power and love.  We seek that which is your will in our lives and look forward to the return of your Son Jesus Christ.  Please Father, wrap your arms around each of us and provide for us all of our needs.  Forgive us Father, for all of our mistakes and failures in our pursuit of righteousness.  Develop in us the ability to also forgive those who disrupt our lives.  Open our eyes Father, to the enemy who is in pursuit of our souls.  Let us see clearly the evil trying to control our lives so that we can avoid destruction.  We offer this prayer in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

Here I Am To Worship

(Less than 30 minutes total time)

Open your Bible anywhere right now (I’ll wait. An online Bible will do).  Look at the text in front of you and know this to be an absolute fact – you are looking at the Word of God.  This is our source for all knowledge of God.  The Word of God is the unchanging foundation of our faith.  As followers of Jesus Christ, we find peaceful reassurance, strength, hope, and guidance in the pages of the Bible.  When we study the Bible, we are filled with wisdom and gratitude; this is the fuel that stimulates our desire to praise and worship our God.

“Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.”  Colossians 3:15-17 (NASB)

There’s a great old hymn, written in 1897, that most people know, titled “Count Your Blessings.”  This hymn is a simple encouragement to make a list of all the things God has done in your life.  Unfortunately, many of us tend to get so caught up in dodging the attacks by the enemy we fail to give credit to all that God is doing in our lives.  We can start with the simple fact that we are alive, and then add to that everything else that God has provided.  If we look back at the years gone by, there will be a long list of times that God came through for us and blessed our lives in some profound way.  Spending a few minutes to actually write out a list of all that God has done in our lives is a good way to stimulate a need for praise and worship.

“Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His name; bring an offering, and come before Him; worship the Lord in holy array.”  1 Chronicles 16:29 (NASB)

There is, of course, one thing above all others that God has done for all Christians:  God sent his Son Jesus Christ to pay the price for our sin, granting us each eternal life.  Stop reading right now and sit for a moment contemplating that astonishing undeserved gift granted by the mercy of our God.

“But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; for you once were not a people, but now you are the people of God; you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.”  1 Peter 2:9-10 (NASB)

Jesus Christ is the light of the world that came down from heaven to sacrifice his life on our behalf.  He is altogether worthy of all of our praise and worship.

Let this song prepare your heart for our continued worship.

Here I Am To Worship – Anthem Lights

Light of the world

You stepped down into darkness

Opened my eyes, let me see

Beauty that made this heart adore You

Hope of a life spent with You

Here I am to worship

Here I am to bow down

Here I am to say that You’re my God

You’re altogether lovely

Altogether worthy

Altogether wonderful to me

King of all days

Oh so highly exalted

Glorious in heaven above

Humbly You came to the earth You created

All for love’s sake became poor

Here I am to worship

Here I am to bow down

Here I am to say that You’re my God

You’re altogether lovely

Altogether worthy

Altogether wonderful to me

Well, I’ll never know how much it cost

To see my sin upon that cross

Well, I’ll never know how much it cost

To see my sin upon that cross

Well, I’ll never know how much it cost

To see my sin upon that cross

Here I am to worship

Here I am to bow down

Here I am to say that You’re my God

You’re altogether lovely

Altogether worthy

Altogether wonderful to me

God’s Love is Overwhelming

You are God’s creation.  You were created by the hand of God.  You were created with love.  God so loves you, he has allowed you to pursue your own path in life.  Even when you make a decision to turn your back on him, God continues to love you.

“You, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness and truth.”  Psalm 86:15 (NASB)

Jesus paid the ultimate price for our salvation.  There is no greater love.  We owe our eternal existence to God’s love and mercy; therefore, we should come before God with reverence and submission to his will.  As followers of Jesus, we are empowered by the Holy Spirit guiding and protecting us every step of the way.  As followers of Jesus, God is with us through all of our struggles.  No matter how difficult life becomes, our loving Father is with us ready to catch us if we fall.

“For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.”  Ephesians 3:14-19(NASB)

Trusting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior brings you into the family of God.  As Christians, we are children of God.  This single act is a clear demonstration of the profound love God has for his creation.  No matter how far away from him we wander, he is always ready to receive us back into his loving arms.  There is nothing we can do to separate ourselves from the love of God.

“See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God.”  1 John 3:1 (NASB)

As we stand before God with our praise, worshiping his holy name, we surrender our soul into his hands.  Our hearts are overflowing with love, gratitude, and reverence for our awesome God.

Let this song open up your spirit to God.

Maker of the Heavens – Mosaic MSC

You gave away Your freedom for my heart

The price You paid to give eternal life

The limits of Your grace go past the heavens

The universe could not contain Your love

How great is Your love, my soul surrenders

To who You are and, all You’ve done

I’ll lift my praises, to You, my Savior

For who You are and, all You’ve done

Passion moved Your heart to save my soul

The universe declares Your love for us

The splendor of Your glory came from heaven

The proof of God pursuing us with love

How great is Your love, my soul surrenders

To who You are and, all You’ve done

I’ll lift my praises, to You, my Savior

For who You are and, all You’ve done

Maker of the heavens, there is none like You

My soul longs for You, and I believe

Holy is Your name, the most beautiful

None can stand against my King

Maker of the heavens, there is none like You

My soul longs for You, and I believe

Holy is Your name, the most beautiful

None can stand against my King

How great is Your love, my soul surrenders

To who You are and, all You’ve done

I’ll lift my praises, to You, my Savior

For who You are and, all You’ve done

How great is Your love, my soul surrenders

To who You are and, all You’ve done

I’ll lift my praises, to You, my Savior

For who You are and, all You’ve done

Resting in the Arms of Our God

When we fully commit our lives to following Jesus, there is a peace of mind that allows our soul to rest in his capable hands.  God has provided for us in remarkable ways.  Following in the footsteps of Jesus is the key to finding the peace that he has promised.

“Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”  Matthew 11:28-30(NASB)

Jesus came into this world on our behalf, took on our sin and died on the cross to set us free.  In his resurrection he demonstrated his power to overcome death and transmit eternal life to those who believe in him and trust him as their Lord and Savior.  When Jesus tells us there will be peace in knowing him, we can be certain he will deliver on that proclamation.

“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.”  John 14:27 (NASB)

There are many reasons to rejoice in the Lord.  His love, mercy, and peace are the cornerstones of our desire to worship him.  Our salvation and the gift of the Holy Spirit are the solid structure built on that foundation.  Our eternal destiny is the guarantee that our relationship with him goes on forever.

“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 4:4-7 (NASB)

Let this song fill your spirit with praise.

Come Alive – Red Rocks Worship

Lay down your burdens, lay down your pride

Rest in the mercy that Jesus provides

Come all ye weary, broken inside

Lay down your burdens, lay down your life

Come and lift your voice

At the throne of grace, we come alive

Let the lost rejoice, in Jesus Christ

His arms are open wide

Lay down your burdens, lay down your pride

Rest in the mercy that Jesus provides

Come all ye weary, broken inside

Lay down your burdens, lay down your life

Come and lift your voice

At the throne of grace, we come alive

Let the lost rejoice, in Jesus Christ

His arms are open wide

Let these mountains shake

From the sound of voices multiplied

As our souls awake, in Jesus Christ

His arms are open wide

We come alive in You, Jesus

Oh, there’s nothing like Your presence

Mmm

In this moment

In this moment, in Your presence

Overwhelmed by love, we come alive

We cry holy, King of Glory

Jesus Christ, Your name be lifted high

In this moment, in Your presence

Overwhelmed by love, we come alive

We cry holy, King of Glory

Jesus Christ, Your name be lifted high

In this moment, in Your presence

Overwhelmed by love, we come alive

We cry holy, King of Glory

Jesus Christ, Your name be lifted high

In this moment, in Your presence

Overwhelmed by love, we come alive

We cry holy, King of Glory

Jesus Christ, Your name be lifted high

Come and lift your voice

At the throne of grace, we come alive

Let the lost rejoice, in Jesus Christ

His arms are open wide

Let these mountains shake

From the sound of voices multiplied

As our souls awake, in Jesus Christ

His arms are open wide

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

The Way

To unbelievers, The Way of Christianity is often seen as fanatical, and that may not be a bad term.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16 (NASB)

________________________________________

Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

________________________________________

Let’s Pray Together

Almighty Creator of the universe, watching over us all, we praise your holy name.  Guide us toward your approaching kingdom as loyal followers of your every desire.  Thank you for all that you provide in our lives.  Bless us Father with your goodness and mercy, as we stumble our way through this life, and provide us with the ability to bless others in the same manner.  Keep our minds ever vigilant to the disruptive powers of the evil one.  Guide us on a path that avoids destruction.  You alone are our protector and deliverer.  We ask these things in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

The Way

(Less than 30 minutes total time)

Christianity caused quite a commotion in its early days after Jesus ascended back into heaven.  When the apostle Paul was preaching the gospel in Ephesus, it caused a riot – demonstrating the dramatic impact of what was then known as “The Way.”

“About that time there occurred no small disturbance concerning The Way.”  Acts 19:23 (NASB)

The extraordinary story of the death and resurrection of Jesus was being told by eye witnesses as well as the astonishing stories of the miracles he performed – healing the blind, casting out demons, and bringing the dead back to life.  At that same time, the apostles were performing similar miracles of their own.  The power of God was on clear display; however, many skeptics continued to challenge The Way as nothing more than a crazy sect.

“This I admit to you, that according to The Way which they call a sect I do serve the God of our fathers, believing everything that is in accordance with the Law and that is written in the Prophets.”  Acts 24:14 (NASB)

Even today there are many who label Christians as crazy or at least delusional for their absurd belief in a God who promises eternal life as the result of someone who was crucified on a cross over two thousand years ago.  Of course, the truth is that the mere continued existence of the Christian church for over two thousand years tends to demonstrate the miraculous is clearly at play.  Followers of Jesus are obviously convinced that he is in fact, The Way.

“Jesus said to him, “I am The Way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.”  John 14:6 (NASB)

Jesus Christ is the King of King and the Lord of Lords.  There is no other. He sits at the right hand of God the Father and will one day return to build his kingdom here on earth.  There’s nobody like our God.

Let this song lift your spirit.

Nobody Like Our God – Myron Butler

Our Lord

He Reigns

Nobody Like Our God

Our Lord

He Reigns

Nobody Like Our God

Our Lord

He Reigns

Nobody Like Our God

Our Lord

He Reigns

Nobody Like Our God

Who Is Strong And Mighty

Our God

Seated On the Throne

Our God

High Above the Heavens

Our God

He Is God Alone, Ohh

Our Lord

He Reigns

Nobody Like Our God

Our Lord

He Reigns

Nobody Like Our God

Who came down from glory

Gave his life for me

World with all power

To save and set us free

Our Lord

He Reigns

Nobody Like Our God

Our Lord

He Reigns

Nobody Like Our God

The Whole earth is filled with his glory

The heavens declare he’s mighty

All honor be known to our God

Righteous in every way

The Lord God ancient of days

There’s nobody, nobody like our God

There’s nobody like our God

He is Lord

Nobody like our God

He is Lord

Love is The Way

Our God is righteous, and he is faithful.  Our God is all powerful.  Our God is sovereign and just.  Our God is compassionate and gracious.  Our God is good.  Our God is holy.  Our God is forgiving and merciful.  Our God is our refuge and help.  But above all, our God is love.

“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love.”  1 John 4:7-8 (NASB)

The love of God is all encompassing, it’s not a directionless emotion; God’s love is a moral direction pointed toward the kingdom of heaven.  God’s love is about looking outside of yourself and caring deeply for others.  God’s love is a source of spiritual energy.  God’s love is an uncompromising sense of joy that fills your heart even in the darkest of times.

“Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor; not lagging behind in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer, contributing to the needs of the saints, practicing hospitality.”  Romans 12:9-13 (NASB)

When we act out of love, we step into the same spiritual space as our God.  It is our expression of godly love that fuels our eternal existence guaranteed by our salvation.  Through loving fellowship with God and by lovingly following the teachings of Jesus, we deliberately work our way towards the kingdom of God.  Staying within the boundaries of God’s love in this hostile world is not an easy exercise; it requires diligence, self-discipline, and perseverance.

“I do all things for the sake of the gospel, so that I may become a fellow partaker of it.  Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win.”  1 Corinthians 9:23-24 (NASB)

Victory is ours when we stop fighting and start spreading God’s love.

Allow this song to lift your spirit.

Let Love Win – Carrollton

Lord Your love builds bridges that cannot be burned

It speaks truth that cannot be learned

It’s a treasure we can never earn

Oh, it goes places we’re afraid of going

It’s not a fist it’s a hand wide open

Reaching out to the down to the low and broken

We believe Your love is the strongest way

You’re tearing down walls and You break our chains

Even in this darkness hope will rise again

When we lay down our weapons we will let love win

Lord we lay down our weapons and we let love win

Lord Your love is a friend to its enemies

It takes a hit then turns a cheek

You laid down Your life for peace

Oh, love won’t cast a single stone

It’s never proven by words alone

You come alive in our flesh and bones and in our souls

We believe Your love is the strongest way

You’re tearing down walls and You break our chains

Even in this darkness hope will rise again

When we lay down our weapons we will let love win

Lord we lay down our weapons and we let love win

What if fighting for our beliefs

Looks more like surrendering

Though that’s the hardest thing

And what if standing up for what’s right

Means laying down our pride

Even laying down our lives

We believe Your love is the strongest way

You’re tearing down walls and You break our chains

Even in this darkness hope will rise again

When we lay down our weapons we will let love win

We believe Your love is the strongest way

You’re tearing down walls and You break our chains

Even in this darkness hope will rise again

When we lay down our weapons we will let love win

Lord we lay down our weapons and we let love win

Some Say Christians are Crazy

To unbelievers, The Way of Christianity is often seen as fanatical, and that may not be a bad term.  In fact, radical and fanatical is precisely the path followers of Jesus need to follow in a world that is largely going in the opposite direction.  When believers are born-again, their old life in this world has gone away and their new radical, fanatical self comes alive.

“Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.”  Romans 6:3-4(NASB)

Christians are in fact, different.  Frightened, insecure people often label different as crazy.  Followers of Jesus present their whole being into fellowship with God so as to shine the bright light of truth on a fallen world.  Followers of Jesus avoid the faithless pattern of living found in this world and focus on the spirit of God through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

“Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.”  Romans 12:1-2 (NASB)

Those of us who are followers of Jesus have a profoundly different position in life than those who have turned their back on God.  Believers look different, act different, and respond differently to those around them because believers are, in fact, different.  Believers are awesome eternal spiritual beings spreading God’s love.

“Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, is never to die again; death no longer is master over Him. For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.”  Romans 6:8-11 (NASB)

When you live for God rather than the pleasures of this world, some will call you crazy.  When you follow The Way of Jesus Christ rather than the way of the world, some will see you as fanatical.  Praise God that your light is shining in such a way that you are clearly seen as different.  True followers of Jesus live and love to be different.

Allow this song to lift your spirit.

Crazy – Newsboys

You turned the world on its head with Your words

Said, “the first will be last and the last will be first”

You loved the traitor, those who spat in Your face

And You gave up a throne for a cross and a grave

Oh, I wanna be that radical

Oh, fearless and fanatical

Crazy!

I don’t care if the whole world calls me

Crazy!

I don’t care if it looks like I’ve lost my mind, I’m alive

To live a reckless, righteous, foolish life

Maybe

I was born to be crazy

I was born to be crazy

You said the meek would inherit the earth

And the wise of the world came to call You absurd

You spoke of kingdoms that no eye has seen

And proclaimed You’re the way to eternity

Oh, I wanna be that radical

Oh, fearless and fanatical

Crazy!

I don’t care if the whole world calls me

Crazy!

I don’t care if it looks like I’ve lost my mind, I’m alive

To live a reckless, righteous, foolish life

Maybe

I was born to be crazy

I was born to be crazy

Some say strange

Some say odd

I say child of the living God

Some say mad

Some say wrong

I say child of the living God

Crazy!

I don’t care if the whole world calls me

Crazy!

I don’t care if it looks like I’ve lost my mind, I’m alive

To live a reckless, righteous, foolish life

Maybe

I was born to be crazy

I was born to be crazy

I was born to be crazy

I was born to be crazy

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

Life Can Be a Struggle

Our plans are irrelevant and likely fall far short of what God has designed our life to be.

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Colossians 3:16 (NASB)

________________________________________

Let this be a time of worship to God.  Pray each prayer and add your own personal message to God.  Read each scripture as though reading it for the first time – listen carefully for the voice of God.  Listen to each song paying close attention to the lyrics provided.  These songs were carefully chosen.  Even if the music is not your favorite style of music, know that the musicians performing are sincerely making music to the Lord.  Try to feel the passion in their words and their musical expression.  Give thought to the message presented and confirm the truth therein by opening your Bible and taking some time to do your own personal study.  May you be greatly blessed.

________________________________________

Let’s Pray Together

Father God, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, we worship and adore you.  Fill our hearts with that which is your will and control our steps as we celebrate your approaching kingdom.  We look to you for all our basic needs and thank you for all that you provide.  Please forgive us Father for all the mistakes we make along the way and soften our hearts so that we may forgive others.  Keep us safe from the enemy who wanders about looking to devour our souls.  Fill our minds with your wisdom and our hearts with your love.  We ask these things in the Holy name of Jesus.  Amen.

Life Can Be a Struggle

(Less than 30 minutes total time)

To many of us, it often seems that life is just a series of difficulties disbursed among moments of peace.  Everyday problems punctuate the rhythm of life with a constant need to reevaluate, renegotiate, or reimagine the path forward.  Small problems turn into big problems and big problems turn into insurmountable roadblocks that completely stop our forward progress.  Life can be full of struggle.

 “You do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.”  James 4:14 (NASB)

As a follower of Jesus, we live our lives knowing (not simply believing, but knowing) that God is on our side and He will intervene on our behalf as He sees fit.  The unbelieving skeptic, on the other hand, looks at the difficulties in a believer’s life and questions why God would allow a believer’s life to be so difficult.  From the outside looking in, the Christian life looks no different than the life of an unbeliever.

“I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”  Romans 8:18 (NASB)

The unbeliever fails to see the bigger picture.  We are here in this life for a brief moment in all eternity.  Every difficult step in this life is preparation for our eternal existence with God.  Nevertheless, even mature followers of Jesus will become overwhelmed with struggles from time-to-time and wonder why life is so difficult.  We simply have to trust in the Lord, knowing that everything in our life has a purpose in his great plan.

“Many plans are in a man’s heart, but the counsel of the Lord will stand.”  Proverbs 19:21(NASB)

Our plans are irrelevant and likely fall far short of what God has designed our life to be.

Let this song speak to your heart.

Faith Is Not A Feeling – Josh Wilson

Suffering is Part of Our Walk with God

Our faith in Jesus is not a feeling that overcomes us; it is a decision to follow his teachings.  There is no promise of a perfect life.  Jesus suffered greatly on our behalf.  The Apostle Paul suffered throughout his life.  Suffering is to be expected.  There is value in suffering.

“In the day of prosperity be happy, but in the day of adversity consider—God has made the one as well as the other.”  Ecclesiastes 7:14 (NASB)

Believers are being trained by God to fully understand all aspects of life.  Wisdom comes from suffering.  Struggles in life are strength building experiences.  We should consider every struggle to be a challenge designed to stimulate our spiritual endurance.

“Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.”  James 1:2-3(NASB)

As a follower of Jesus Christ, you are never alone.  No matter what you are going through, God is with you every step of the way.  He’s not there to do it for you – He’s there to catch you if you fall.  Believers have access to the power of God through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.  There is no better helper than the spirit of God.

“My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.”  Psalm 121:2 (NASB)

Therefore, believers sing praises to God for every struggle.  Every difficult moment in your life is an indication that God believes you are capable of overcoming the adversities placed in your path.  Every struggle is another opportunity to trust God and walk with him through the storm.

Let this song speak to your heart.

Praise You In This Storm – Casting Crowns

I was sure by now

God, you would have reached down

And wiped our tears away

Stepped in and saved the day

But once again, I say “Amen,” and it’s still raining

As the thunder rolls

I barely hear your whisper through the rain

“I’m with you”

And as your mercy falls

I raise my hands and praise the God who gives

And takes away

And I’ll praise you in this storm

And I will lift my hands

For you are who you are

No matter where I am

And every tear I’ve cried

You hold in your hand

You never left my side

And though my heart is torn

I will praise you in this storm

I remember when

I stumbled in the wind

You heard my cry to you

And raised me up again

My strength is almost gone

How can I carry on

If I can’t find you

But as the thunder rolls

I barely hear your whisper through the rain

“I’m with you”

And as your mercy falls

I raise my hands and praise the God who gives

And takes away

And I’ll praise you in this storm

And I will lift my hands

For you are who you are

No matter where I am

And every tear I’ve cried

You hold in your hand

You never left my side

And though my heart is torn

I will praise you in this storm

I lift my eyes unto the hills

Where does my help come from?

My help comes from the Lord

The maker of Heaven and Earth

I lift my eyes unto the hills

Where does my help come from?

My help comes from the Lord

The maker of Heaven and Earth

And I’ll praise you in this storm

And I will lift my hands

For you are who you are

No matter where I am

And every tear I’ve cried

You hold in your hand

You never left my side

And though my heart is torn

I will praise you in this storm

Though my heart is torn

(Though my heart is torn)

I will praise you in this storm

(Praise you in this storm)

Struggles Are An Opportunity to Experience God’s Love

When we’re caught up in the middle of an especially difficult time, it’s hard to see the bright future that will surely follow.  It’s important for us to expand our perspective beyond the present and look back at past experiences.  Remember how God came through for you over and over again in your life.  There is nothing that can separate us from the love of God.

“In all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  Romans 8:37-39(NASB)

Even when we stumble and fall victim to the schemes of the enemy, God remains by our side ready to wrap his arms around us when we come out the other side.  Our God is a never-ending source of love and mercy.

“You, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness and truth.”  Psalm 86:15 (NASB)

As a follower of Jesus Christ, we receive and transmit God’s love every moment of every day.  It is God’s love that has transformed us into children of God.  It is God’s love that has empowered our Christian life and carries us forward into all eternity.

“We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.”  1 John 4:16(NASB)

Life can be a struggle.  We all make mistakes.  In every circumstance, God is with us.  God’s love fills the heart of every believer and is the power that lifts us up from despair and moves us forward to a bright new tomorrow.

Let this song speak to your heart.

Lift Me Up – The Afters

Waiting for the sunrise

Waiting for the day

Waiting for a sign

That I’m where you want me to be

You know my heart is heavy

And the hurt is deep

But when I feel like giving up

You’re reminding me

That we all fall down sometimes

But when I hit the ground

You lift me up when I am weak

Your arms wrap around me

Your love catches me so I’m letting go

You lift me up when I can’t see

Your heart is all that I need

Your love carries me so I’m letting go

I know I’m not perfect

I know I make mistakes

I know that I have let you down

But you love me the same

And when I’m surrounded

When I lose my way

When I’m crying out and falling down

You are here to

Lift me up when I am weak

Your arms wrap around me

Your love catches me so I’m letting go

You lift me up when I can’t see

Your heart is all that I need

Your love carries me so I’m letting go

I can see the dawn is breaking

I am feeling overtaken with your love

With your love

I don’t know what I can offer

In this moment I surrender to your love

To your love

You lift me up when I am weak

Your arms wrap around me

Your love catches me so I’m letting go

You lift me up when I am weak

Your arms wrap around me

Your love catches me so I’m letting go

You lift me up when I can’t see

Your heart is all that I need

Your love carries me so I’m letting go

I can see the dawn is breaking

I am feeling overtaken with your love

You lift me up with your love

You lift me up with your love

You lift me up with your love

You lift me up

Thank you for spending this time worshiping God.

His door is now open to you.  You are in God’s presence.  Don’t leave without Him.  Keep Him with you throughout your day.

Go in peace.

 

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