Archive for September 2020

I Come Seeking You

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.
(Psalm 119:105, NIV)

It’s easy to read the Bible merely out of habit, without any thought of why we’re reading or what we’re looking for.

God has prompted me to pray briefly before reading, in order to center my thoughts, my search, and my need on Him.

As I read, I look to Him for understanding. I need Him to meet me and speak to me.

More than specific information, I need to gain His mind, His perspective on my life. I need to know Him.

Jesus, as I read,
I come seeking You.

All-seeing God,
You see our reality more
deeply,
broadly, and
truly than we.
Show us the truth by
Your Spirit and
Your Word.
Give us listening ears and
seeing hearts.

Hymn: We Come Seeking You

Christ in Psalm 67

In the human Jesus Christ
we see our Father in all His
majestic,
tender,
holy magnificence!
Know Him!
Trust Him!
Praise Him!

Recording
Printed Music

Unfathomed God, complete in Christ,
You sing and dance Your love in Christ.
The riches of Your boundless life
All flow to us in Jesus Christ.
In all that history surveys,
In all creation’s vast displays
We glimpse Your wise and tender ways.
They shine complete in Jesus Christ.

O God, let all the peoples praise
And earth and heaven join to raise
The Name reality obeys:
Your Son, our Brother, Jesus Christ.
O Truth and Grace, O Joy and Light,
O Wisdom, Wealth, and Sovereign Might,
Pure Love in all its depth and height –
All praise to You in Jesus Christ!

by Ken Bible, © 2019 LNWhymns.com.

Psalms of Desiring God

Fresh Views of Timeless Truths

For the next two weeks, nurture your hunger for God with Psalms of Desiring God, a free pdf download. It focuses on ten Psalms with scripture, devotional reflections, and recorded hymns that will fuel your longing for Him.

It is part of the new series, Fresh Views of Timeless Truth, focused reflections on key topics.

LINKS:
Free pdf of Psalms of Desiring God
Complete list of available volumes in Fresh Views of Timeless Truths

Embracing Our Ignorance

As the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways
And My thoughts than your thoughts.
(Isaiah 55:9, NASB)

I treasure God’s Word and have spent much of my life reading and studying it. Thus I have strong opinions on some theological issues.

At one point I had just finished studying an important section of scripture and came away with the conviction, more powerful than ever, that those who disagreed with me on the interpretation of that scripture were wrong, and dangerously wrong. I prayed and asked God what He wanted me to do about their “serious error”. He told me, “Do what I trained you to do: write a clear and practical hymn based on that passage.” I did, and when finished, I felt good about the hymn and the accuracy of its message.

But as I looked at the completed hymn, I realized that it was just as acceptable and meaningful to my “theological opponents” as it was to me.

Perhaps that was because hymns are best when they are heartfelt and life-centered.

And while believers often disagree about theology on a theoretical level, they rarely disagree about the way we all should live and long to live. For the most part, we are one in that living faith.

I’ve often experienced a strange silence from God about theological positions I consider erroneous. I’ve sensed that somehow, He was more tolerant than I. I kept expecting Him to send me out against the misguided with my sword drawn. He never has.

God gradually helped me realize that He hadn’t called me to straighten out all that is false in the world and in His Church. He has called me to lift up Jesus Christ so that all may find the truth in Him.

Let’s face it. Ignorance is something we all have in common. We are small, short-lived, often self-centered creatures. We are tiny specks in a sea of time, space, and spiritual reality. Our ignorance, at least in this life, is inherent and inescapable. If God couldn’t put up with our ignorance, He would have nothing to do with us.

I pray that God keeps me conscious of my own ignorance and patient with everyone else’s. At the same time, I want my life to boldly, unfailingly proclaim the beautiful, living truth that is in Jesus Christ alone.

Father,
we try to bind You with the ropes of our own
ignorance and
weakness.
But You are beyond all
our limitations,
our control,
our understanding, and
our imagination.
You are the I AM.

Hymn: I Have the Truth

Father, We Come

Father,
glorify Yourself through this need.

Recording
Printed Music

Father, we come at Your love’s invitation,
Drawn by the weight of all our weakness and need,
Lifting our eyes with a child’s desperation,
Mighty God, gracious God, so pure, so complete!

Often we cry from today’s situation.
Fear is our master, and we beg for relief.
Now, Lord, we ask, and with no reservation:
Glorify, glorify Yourself thro’ this need.

Here in the silence of love’s adoration,
Drawn by the wonder of Your life all within,
Lifting Your name with a child’s jubilation,
Trusting You, trusting You, our prayer now begins.

by Ken Bible, © 2008 LNWhymns.com.

A word of encouragement and challenge

Lovers of hymns and lovers of praise music, LISTEN! Christ’s Church is bigger and broader than either of you. Raise your eyes! Unity through diversity is His foundational principle for His people (Ephesians 4:1-16). Support each other! Lift each other! Celebrate each other! Sing TOGETHER!

Humility

From Him and through Him and to Him are all things.
To Him be the glory forever. (Romans 11:36, NASB)

Humility is seeing God.
Humility is worshiping Him.
Humility is loving Him with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength.

Humility is loving others fully and joyfully.

Humility is truth.
It is seeing the world and ourselves as we really are.

Humility is sweet freedom from life’s
most constant and most crushing burden:
the burden of self-concern.
Humility is the freedom to release selfish anxiety and
embrace Christ for all He is.

Father, humility is knowing You.
It is one of the gifts of knowing You are with me.
Thank You, my Lord!

Don’t despise your own
weakness and smallness.
They glorify God.
He uses them to display
His power and greatness.

Hymn: Meekness

Psalm 126

As we sing of God’s faithful deliverance in the past,
we gain new strength for the present.
Set to a familiar tune.
Psalm 126 is part of the Psalms of Ascents series on Psalms 120 – 134.
To download a pdf of the entire “Psalms of Ascents” series,
complete with companion devotional readings,
click here.

Recording
Printed Music

O Father, we remember You.
What mercies without end!
All history sings Your faithful love,
Redeemer, Savior, Friend!

So now as darkness seems to fall,
We sing of victories won,
For passing shadows simply prove
The presence of the Sun.

With need as constant as Your grace,
We come to You again.
Unchanging God, our childlike faith
Awaits Your how and when.

Give now or when the harvest comes,
We trust Your loving choice.
With longing hearts we work and watch
And always, Lord, rejoice!

by Ken Bible, © 2019 LNWhymns.com.

Christ All-in-all

Fresh Views of Timeless Truth

For the next two weeks, reflect on the universal, all-encompassing, all-sufficient Christ with Christ All-in-all, a free pdf download. Its ten devotional reflections and recorded hymns will help fill your heart and mind with all He is.

It is part of the new series, Fresh Views of Timeless Truth, focused reflections on key topics.

Links:
Free pdf of Christ All-in-all
Complete list of available volumes in Fresh Views of Timeless Truths

Pride

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. (Philippians 2:3, NIV)

Pride focuses thought, energy, and attention on me –
a poor,
pitiable,
helpless creature –
rather than on our
magnificent,
loving,
eternal Father.

Pride steals glory and praise from God.
It distracts those He would draw to himself.

Pride is a lie.
It cloaks me in
darkness and
self-delusion
rather than in
light,
love, and
truth.

Pride focuses inward rather than
upward and
outward.
It makes my world smaller.

Pride perverts,
binds,
blinds, and
destroys.

Merciful Jesus, save me from the foolishness of pride.

Father, since You are who You are and
I am who I am,
help me to starve my gluttonous ego,
not feed it.

Hymn: I Fix My Thoughts on You