Sunday, June 30, 2013

Free to Focus

“Unite my heart to fear Thy name.  I will praise thee, O Lord my God, with all my heart… for great is Thy mercy toward me: and Thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest hell” (Psalm 86:11-13).  “Take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? …for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.  But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you” (Matthew 6:31-33). 

My heart by God is now invited
To praise Him now without distraction.
Let all within me be united
To make the Lord my Sole Attraction!

My hopeless future was so grim:
He plucked me from the lowest hell! 
I’m free to focus now on Him,
For by His mercy, all is well!

How great His mercy is on me: 
He rescued me from endless loss!
I’ll praise Him through eternity:
He took my hell upon His cross.

His love for me is wonderful;
His care for me is so complete!
Since Jesus died to save my soul,
My every need I know He’ll meet!

This is the liberty He gives
To focus on His kingdom first: 
I only live because He lives,
And but for Him I would be cursed!

No other name but His I’ll mention;
No other righteousness but His!  
My Lord now has my FULL attention;  
How sweet His gracious freedom is!

Lord, truly there is none like You:
How wonderful are all Your deeds!
My heart is free now to pursue
Your heart which cares for all my needs.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Revival's Recipe

“Wilt Thou not revive us again: that Thy people may rejoice in Thee?  Show us Thy mercy, O LORD, and grant us Thy salvation.  I will hear what God the LORD will speak: for He will speak peace unto His people… Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.  Truth shall spring out of the earth; and righteousness shall look down from heaven… Righteousness shall go before Him; and shall set us in the way of His steps” (Psalm 85:6-13). 

Revival has a recipe 
Which God will show to those who seek.
He gives us eyes of faith to see;
He gives us ears to hear Him speak.

Salvation has ingredients: 
There’s more than mercy here inside, 
For sin must have a consequence,
And judgment cannot be denied. 

God’s mercy AND His truth are met,
He is both Just AND Justifier,
There was a ransom that was set
Which our salvation must require. 

God’s judgment cannot be dismissed;
Our peace from God comes at a price:
Yet righteousness and peace have kissed,
Through Christ, our perfect Sacrifice!

Revival comes with adoration,
Recalling that there was a cost
That Jesus paid for our salvation
To rescue and redeem the lost!

Our Savior gave for us His all
That justice may be satisfied!
Revival comes as we recall
The reason that our Savior died.

O Lord, we thank You that You’ve shown
The steps You took to save our soul.
We fix our eyes on You alone,
For You alone have made us whole.

O Lord, You’ve satisfied our thirst!
Revival’s recipe is true:
As we recall You loved us first,
Our hearts respond in love to You.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Blessing in Baca

“Blessed is the man whose strength is in Thee, every one of them in Zion appeareth before God... who passing through the valley of Baca (Heb. Weeping), make it a well… They go from strength to strength… the LORD will give grace and glory” (Psalm 84:5-11).  “The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up… And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee… saith unto them, Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men” (Matthew 4:16-19). 

There is a strength that heaven gives
To every person who appears
Before the Lord who ever lives
To heal hearts and dry their tears.

There is a course, God knows the length,
That we are called each day to run.
We daily go to God for strength;
Without His grace, we would have none.

There is a valley filled with sorrow
Where death’s dark shadow daily looms.
Yet there is blessing we may borrow
In Baca’s valley filled with tombs. 

For Christ has entered Baca’s vale;
His light has shined upon her shore! 
His grace and glory shall not fail
To conquer death forevermore! 

Our world here is thus extended
In Baca’s valley of distress:
So why has not her weeping ended,
Since Christ has come to save and bless?

Alas!  So many have ignored
The truth that calls for a decision:
Unless they will receive the Lord,
There’s no escape from Baca’s prison!

Our Lord has called us in this place,
As long as we have any breath,
To preach the Gospel of His grace
That saves a soul from sin and death.

We follow Christ in this pursuit
Who makes us fishers now of men. 
He calls us here to bear much fruit
And labor till He comes again.

O Lord, we gladly follow You
To fish for men, to feed Your sheep,
And show the Gospel that is true
Where souls in Baca’s valley weep.

O Lord, until we’re called to rest
By shout above or through the grave,
In Baca’s valley we’ll attest
That You alone can bless and save!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Praise and Prudence

“My son, be wise, and make My heart glad, that I may answer him that reproacheth Me.  A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself; but the simple pass on, and are punished” (Proverbs 27:11,12). 

Our Father calls us to be wise
And make Him glad by what we do,
That He may answer Satan’s lies
By demonstrating what is true.

Our God is true, though we may fail;
His absolutes shall not be moved,
Yet shouldn’t grateful love prevail
And by obedience be proved? 

Let God be magnified with praise,
And let this be the motivation
By which our joyful heart obeys:
Our gratitude for His salvation!

Consider what He saved us from:
He saw the hell we could not see!
His love alone caused Him to come
And bear our sins to set us free. 

A prudent man can see ahead;
He hides himself in saving grace.
The fool will close his eyes instead
To punishment that he must face. 

So let us now be circumspect
And walk with prudence in our way,
Persuading souls whom we direct
To turn to Jesus Christ today. 

O Lord, we hear the declaration
That Scripture makes so very plain:
In You alone we have salvation;
All other hope is surely vain.

Lord, help us wisely use our time,
Since we are here a little while,
To praise You for Your love sublime
And, by our prudence, make You smile. 

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Dangerous Darkness

“They know not, neither will they understand; they walk on in darkness” (Psalm 82:5).  “And now I have this day declared it to you; but ye have not obeyed the voice of the LORD your God” (Jeremiah 42:21).  “Where is He that is born King of the Jews?  For we have seen His star in the east, and are come to worship Him.  When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him… And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judea: for thus it is written by the prophet” (Matthew 2:2-5). 

The people are in darkness still,
Though light from God has clearly shined.
How clearly He expressed His will,
Declaring it to all mankind! 

Yet many still refuse the light
That God has sent into our land.
They’d rather have the cloak of night;
They’ve chosen not to understand.

They cannot claim they did not hear:
The Lord has stripped them of that cloak,
For God has made His Gospel clear,
Fulfilling what His prophets spoke. 

We see how wise men traveled far
To seek the King of kings on earth.
The Scriptures and the guiding star
Shed light upon the Savior’s birth. 

They knew the time, but not the place;
Your Word gave light:  In Bethlehem!
Now by the Scriptures we may trace
God’s light for us as well as them!

For though our Lord came to the Jews,
He came for every soul as well,
That by His mercy we may choose
To turn to Him and flee from hell.

How dangerous the darkness is
Deceiving people on their path!
Yet God gives light to all of His
And saves them from eternal wrath.

O Lord, we see the looming danger
For those who will in darkness walk:
They choose to be Your foe and stranger,
Befriending those today who mock. 

Lord, send us forth to show Your favor
As wise men traveled far to do,
In danger, showing You’re the Savior;
In darkness, You’re the Light that’s true.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Surely Should

“The haters of the LORD should have submitted themselves unto Him: but their time should have endured forever.  He should have fed them also with the finest of the wheat: and with honey out of the rock should I have satisfied thee” (Psalm 81:15,16).  “Thou shalt call His name JESUS: for He shall save His people from their sins… and they shall call His name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us” (Matthew 1:21-23). 

God came to those whom He created;
He gave Himself in matchless love.
They should have loved Him, yet they hated
The Lord who left His throne above.

Alas!  They surely should have turned,
Submitting then for their own good,
But haters of the Lord have spurned
The God of grace whom they withstood.

He would have fed them with the best
That heaven’s love could well afford.
He would have given them His rest
If they had trusted in the Lord. 

The prophets had foretold the place,
The time, and line of Jesus’ birth.
His own then should have seen the grace  
Of “God With Us” upon the earth.

The angel had announced His name,
Which meant Jehovah’s own salvation.
They called Him JESUS, for He came
To save our souls from condemnation.

He came to save our souls from hell,
And He alone was qualified.
His name was called EMMANUEL,
For “God with Us” would thus abide.

Since God had preannounced our Savior,
His people surely should have known
And trusted in His saving favor,
Assured that JESUS saves alone.

O Lord, there’s surely no defense
In view of Your prophetic Word.
The mountain of Your evidence
Has rendered unbelief absurd. 

The battle lines, O Lord, have formed:
Now with Your Gospel truth we hold,
Should not gates of hell be stormed?
With You we surely should be bold!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Seal not the Sayings

“If thou forbear to deliver them that are drawn unto death, and those that are ready to be slain; if thou sayest, Behold, we knew it not; doth not He that pondereth the heart consider it?  And He that keepeth thy soul, doth not he know it?  And shall not He render to every man according to his works?” (Proverbs 24:11,12).  “Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand… And the Spirit and the bride say, Come.  And let him that heareth say, Come.  And let him that is athirst come.  And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely” (Revelation 22:10-17).  

Let not the knowledge that we hold
Concerning Christ and His salvation
Be sealed up, but rather told,
As we extend His invitation.

The Lord who saved our souls from hell 
Has sent us now to show His favor
To those who may be saved as well
By trusting Jesus Christ our Savior.

The souls around us need to know
That Jesus Christ will save them too! 
The Gospel seed is ours to sow,
As God commands us now to do. 

Do not withhold the prophecy
Which God has given to reveal.
We have the truth that makes us free
Which God commands us not to seal.

The time is surely now at hand
When Christ shall come, as we have heard.
No wonder we have God’s command
To seal not His precious Word!

The signs are like a beating drum
Which now grow louder every day. 
The Spirit and the bride say, Come;
Now come to Christ without delay!

Yes, come to Christ all you who thirst
And freely drink of saving grace!
Now come to Him who loved you first;
The time has come to seek His face! 

O Lord, we thank you that You came
To save the souls of sinful men.
We would not seal, but proclaim,  
The Gospel till You come again.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Endeavor's End

“Labor not to be rich: cease from thine own wisdom.  Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not?  For riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven… but be thou in the fear of the LORD all the day long.  For surely there is an end; and thine expectation shall not be cut off” (Proverbs 24:4-18).  “He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be My son” (Revelation 21:7). 

Our labor surely has an end:
We ought give this careful thought.
Will it be worth the price we spend,
Or do we hope for what is not? 

It’s time to clarify our goals
And live for things that last forever!
Our Savior lived and died for souls;
He leads us still in this endeavor. 

We cannot work for our salvation,
But we can live to please our Lord.
We have our Savior’s invitation:
What treasures here may be explored!

Our Father knows we need such things
For living such as daily bread. 
Yet earthly riches make their wings
And fly away when we are dead. 

We ought to live for things that last
Beyond the soon approaching grave.
This life on earth will soon be passed,
But souls endure which Christ would save.

It matters not where we are from,
But rather now where we are going.
By faith we’re saved and overcome,
Yet if we’re saved, it should be showing.

Our labor here on earth is flawed;
The work that saves us has been done!
We are redeemed now by our God,
And by new birth, we’re called His son.  

You are, O Lord, our only Peace:
By grace we’re saved and have Your favor.
Our work and wisdom here must cease:
We trust in You, our Lord and Savior!

May our endeavors, Lord, express 
Our grateful love in all we do,
And may our labors serve to bless
And draw more souls to trust in You!

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Quietly Qualifying

“He chose David also His servant, and took him from the sheepfolds… to feed Jacob his people, and Israel his inheritance.  So he fed them according to the integrity of his heart; and guided them by the skillfulness of his hands” (Psalm 78:70-72).  “By humility and the fear of the LORD are riches, and honor, and life… Train up a child in the way he should go… Have not I written to thee excellent things in counsels and knowledge, that I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth; that thou mightest answer the words of truth to them that send unto thee?” (Proverbs 22:6,20,21). 

King David was trained as a shepherd of sheep
Before God would take him to reign as a king.
The workings of God are both quiet and deep
Whereby He equips us for some greater thing.

God quietly works as He looks on the heart
To mold in us traits we must have to succeed.   
Integrity!  This is the place God will start,
To lay the foundation He knows we will need.   

Humility comes with the fear of the Lord
As God shows how greatly we need His salvation,
And thus we depend on the grace He’ll afford
To live for His glory and His commendation.

We train up our children to trust and not doubt
By teaching integrity to them as well.
We show them God’s Word is a Fountain in drought:
Its truth makes us free and will save us from hell.

O Lord, we give thanks for the work that You do
To quietly qualify us with the skill
To serve You with love and to show You are true
As You mold within us Your purpose and will.  

Friday, June 21, 2013

Counsel Correction

“I call to remembrance my song in the night: I commune with mine own heart: and my spirit made diligent search. Will the Lord cast off forever?  And will He be favorable no more?... And I said, This is my infirmity: but I will remember the years of the right hand of the most High… I will meditate also of all Thy work, and talk of Thy doings… who is so great a God as our God?” (Psalm 77:6-13).  There is no wisdom, nor understanding, nor counsel against the LORD” (Proverbs 21:30). 

I’ve called to remembrance my song in the night
And sought for the counsel my heart could afford. 
How often I’ve found that my thoughts were not right
Until I had turned and remembered the Lord!

Praise God for the counsel He gives with perfection!
Our counsel without Him is foolish and weak.
God speaks to our heart with His tender correction
When we turn to Him for the counsel we seek.

How great is our God!  Oh, how could we forget?
His wisdom and mercy have always sufficed!
The greatest of needs in salvation were met
By God’s grace and truth through our Lord Jesus Christ!

Let’s go to the Word, then, with this expectation:
His wisdom is greater that all of our own!
For who counseled Him when He fashioned creation?
How great is His counsel He kindly makes known!

How strangely so many in our day refuse
The counsel God gives by His gracious instruction!
How vain is the option they sadly will choose
That leads them in darkness by Satan’s seduction! 

O Lord, we give thanks that Your counsel is plain
To all who will seek You with all of their heart!
Correct and replace now the thoughts that are vain
With counsel that You by Your Word will impart.