Choir Devotion time

Some of you may know that I attend The Salvation Army and sing in the local choir ( in the Army they are referred to as Songsters).

For as long as I care to remember it has been customary either during or at close of practice. The devotional period is usually about ten minutes and consist of a thought/bible reading and prayer

Our practice is on a Thursday night and last nights thought was about “When you think someone doesn’t care they actually do”

Here is the words and music of two retired Generals John Gowans and John Larsson of The Salvation Army.

Do you sometimes feel that no one truly knows you,
And that no one understands or really cares?
Through his people, God himself is close beside you,
And through them he plans to answer all your prayers.
Chorus
Someone cares, someone cares,
Someone knows your deepest need, your burden shares;
Someone cares, someone cares,
God himself will hear the whisper of your prayers.

2. Ours is not a distant God, remote, unfeeling,
Who is careless of our loneliness and pain,
Through the ministry of men he gives his healing,
In their dedicated hands brings hope again.

Being renewed day by day

2 Corinthians 4 New International Version

Present Weakness and Resurrection Life

Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart. Rather, we have renounced secret and shameful ways; we do not use deception, nor do we distort the word of God. On the contrary, by setting forth the truth plainly we commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God. And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,”[a] made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.

But we have this Image result for Corinthians 4 16 -17treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side,but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 10 We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. 11 For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may also be revealed in our mortal body. 12 So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you.

13 It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.”[b] Since we have that same spirit of[c] faith, we also believe and therefore speak,14 because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you to himself.15 All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.

16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

Broken Hearts

See the source image

Matthew 11:28-30 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

There are  of course several other bible verses I could list.

John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

2 Corinthians 12:9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.

As we are reminded in this video throughout the pain we suffer we can come to him in prayer and put our Trust in him to heal that broken heart because God loves us and cares for us

Pentecost Sunday

Acts 2; 1-4

The Holy Spirit Comes at Pentecost
1 When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues[a] as the Spirit enabled them.

Image result for pentecost

Yesterday we celebrated Pentecost (the start of the Christian Church) and the above passage of scripture has to be one of my favourites I must admit. The way the Holy Spirit fills the house and what happened to each of them must of been awesome.

1.
Spirit divine, come as of old
With healing in thy train;
Come, as thou did’st, to sanctify;
Let naught of sin remain.

Chorus
Come, great Spirit, come,
Make each heart thy home;
Enter every longing soul;
Come, great Spirit, come.

2.
Spirit divine, purge thou our hearts
Make us to understand
Thy blessed will concerning us,
And teach us love’s command.

3.
Spirit divine, cleanse thou our souls
With Pentecostal flood;
Breathe into us the life that shows
The Father-love of God.

God’s Holy Spirit

Acts 2:1-21.

When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them.

This is a verse of scripture and song mainly used at Pentecost came to me this morning and I thought it doesn’t have to be kept until then to be sung, you can sing it most of the year because it’s a song where we ask the Holy Spirit not only to heal us but to help us to understand God’s will and finally to cleanse our souls and make them anew.

1.
Spirit divine, come as of old
With healing in thy train;
Come, as thou did’st, to sanctify;See the source image
Let naught of sin remain.

Chorus
Come, great Spirit, come,
Make each heart thy home;
Enter every longing soul;
Come, great Spirit, come.

2.
Spirit divine, purge thou our hearts
Make us to understand
Thy blessed will concerning us,
And teach us love’s command.

3.
Spirit divine, cleanse thou our souls
With Pentecostal flood;
Breathe into us the life that shows
The Father-love of God.

I heard God laugh

I heard God laugh;

And sunshine broke into a thousand pieces

To plunge into the hearts of men,

Earth pored out her singing into mountain’s crystal silences,

Trees pulled their ancient roots and danced for joy

Flowers sang, birds and bees understood

And stopped, in listening wonder:

Shuddered the old, old fears to vanish into living light

And man, set free at last from all the weariness of doubt,

Ran to gaze up into the eyes of heavenly reason,

In the sudden knowledge that in the true centre

Love breathes on life, healing and making whole.

God the begining, God the victorious end.

The Lithurgy of Life

Homeless in the cold weather

Image result for homeless in the cold weather

Isaiah 58: 6-8 6″Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? 7Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter- when you see the naked, to clothe them, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood? 8Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.

Although I poked a little fun on the British weather in yesterday’s blog we mustn’t forget how it’s affecting the homeless. We hear on the news about the good work the homeless shelters are doing but unfortunately they fill up pretty quick in this weather which means some people are still sleeping rough.

We pay a particular thanks to those who are prepared to go out  at night and look for these people.

I would also like to pay tribute to those who did or still may be doing the  neighbourly /friendly thing by bringing food and drink to those stranded in vehicles and lorries through out the country.

Instructions

1 Thessalonians 5 New International Version (NIV)

Final Instructions

12 Now we ask you, brothers and sisters, to acknowledge those who work hard among you, who care for you in the Lord and who admonish you. 13 Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other. 14 And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone. 15 Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.

16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

19 Do not quench the Spirit. 20 Do not treat prophecies with contempt 21 but test them all; hold on to what is good, 22 reject every kind of evil.

23 May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.

25 Brothers and sisters, pray for us. 26 Greet all God’s people with a holy kiss. 27 I charge you before the Lord to have this letter read to all the brothers and sisters.

28 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

Personally I had never heard of this hymn or the tune attached to it. The tiune is a tune called ‘None of Self’

O the bitter shame and sorrow
that a time could ever be,
when I let the Savior’s pity
plead in vain, and proudly answered:
All of self, and none of thee!

Yet he found me: I beheld him
bleeding on the accursèd tree,
heard him pray: Forgive them, Father;
and my wistful heart said faintly:
Some of self and some of thee!

Day by day his tender mercy,
healing, helping, full and free:
sweet and strong, and ah! so patient,
brought me lower, while I whispered:
Less of self and more of thee!

Higher than the highest heaven,
deeper than the deepest sea;
Lord, thy love at last hath conquered;
grant me now my supplication:
None of self and all of thee!

Someone Cares

Matthew 11:28-30  (NIVUK)

28 ‘Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 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. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.’

Do you sometimes feel that no one truly knows you,
And that no one understands or really cares?
Through his people, God himself is close beside you,
And through them he plans to answer all your prayers.
Chorus
Someone cares, someone cares,
Someone knows your deepest need, your burden shares;
Someone cares, someone cares,
God himself will hear the whisper of your prayers.

2. Ours is not a distant God, remote, unfeeling,
Who is careless of our loneliness and pain,
Through the ministry of men he gives his healing,
In their dedicated hands brings hope again.

I was certain I had done a blog of this title in the past, but looking back I discovered I hadn’t. It’s a song that is well known is The Salvation Army, in fact it started of in one of the Army musicals “Take over Bid”.

The words by General John Gowans is as you can hear put to a simple tune written by General John Larsson.  As you can see by the words it a song used in times of reflection.

This is the arrangement by Andrew Mair

 

Trusting in Jesus

Psalm 37 New International Version – UK

Psalm 37[a]

Of David.

Do not fret because of those who are evil
    or be envious of those who do wrong;
for like the grass they will soon wither,
    like green plants they will soon die away.

Trust in the Lord and do good;
    dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
Take delight in the Lord,
    and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Commit your way to the Lord;
    trust in him and he will do this:

he will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn,
    your vindication like the noonday sun.

Be still before the Lord
    and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when people succeed in their ways,
    when they carry out their wicked schemes.

Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
    do not fret – it leads only to evil.
For those who are evil will be destroyed,
    but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land.

‘Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to take Him at His Word;
Just to rest upon His promise,
And to know, “Thus saith the Lord!”

Refrain:
Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him!
How I’ve proved Him o’er and o’er;
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!
Oh, for grace to trust Him more!

Oh, how sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to trust His cleansing blood;
And in simple faith to plunge me
‘Neath the healing, cleansing flood!

Yes, ’tis sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just from sin and self to cease;
Just from Jesus simply taking
Life and rest, and joy and peace.

I’m so glad I learned to trust Thee,
Precious Jesus, Savior, Friend;
And I know that Thou art with me,
Wilt be with me to the end.