Sunday, February 19, 2012

Mercy, Mercy, Mercy

"Have faith, dear reader, to believe that you need mercy.  Mercy is not for those who think they have merited it.  Such people seek justice, not mercy.  Only the guilty need and seek mercy.  Believe that God delights in mercy, delights to give grace where it cannot be deserved, delights to forgive where there is no reason for forgiveness but His own goodness.  Believe also that the Lord Jesus Christ is the incarnation of mercy.  His very existence is mercy to you.  His every word means mercy.  His life, His death, His intersession in heaven, all mean mercy, mercy, mercy, nothing but mercy... He is the Savior for you."

Charles Spurgeon, Spurgeon on Prayer and Spiritual Warfare

Monday, February 13, 2012

Give Me Faith

My friend, Camille just shared this song. You should listen, share and like.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

How to Abide

My church has been going through the book of First John for the past few months.  Over the past few weeks we have been talking about what it means to 'abide' in Christ.  As I thought about how this practically looks in my moment to moment life I realized I was giving myself headaches thinking about it.  I was trying too hard.  Why is it difficult to remain in Christ?  Well there are the three general reasons: the world, the enemy and the flesh.  I do not know exactly under which - or what combination - of the three my trouble lies, but as I 'randomly' came to John 17:24 I found my fundamental problem.

Jesus says, "Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am..."
Desire.  Jesus desires me to be with Him!  The NIV Bible translates the word as 'want'.  In the Greek the word is, thelō - to will, have in mind, intend, to be resolved or determined, to purpose, to desire, to wish, to love, to like to do a thing, be fond of doing, to take delight in, have pleasure Now in my life I have had my share of people who made it clear to me that I was not wanted.  I typically swung the pendulum of, "What did I do? How do I fix it?" to, "Fine, forget you".  If we do not realize and internalize that Jesus wants us, that God desires us, we may find it difficult to abide in Christ because of our own insecurity and/or pride.  These two sin patterns come from our misunderstanding of who God is and who we are before Him.  

For me, the beginning of abiding in Christ is accepting that I am wanted by God.  Then I may rest in Him, assured. 

Bid Our Spirits Rise

Christian, meditate much on heaven, it will help thee to press on, and to forget the toil of the way. This vale of tears is but the pathway to the better country: this world of woe is but the stepping-stone to a world of bliss.

"Prepare us, Lord, by grace divine, For Thy bright courts on high; Then bid our spirits rise, and join The chorus of the sky."

C.H. Spurgeon, "Arise, and depart", Morning and Evening.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

"They shall sing in the ways of the Lord."

"They shall sing in the ways of the Lord."
Psalm 138:5

     The time when Christians begin to sing in the ways of the Lord is when they first lose their burden at the foot of the Cross. Not even the songs of the angels seem so sweet as the first song of rapture which gushes from the inmost soul of the forgiven child of God. You know how John Bunyan describes it. He says when poor Pilgrim lost his burden at the Cross, he gave three great leaps, and went on his way singing-- "Blest Cross! blest Sepulchre! blest rather be The Man that there was put to shame for me!"
Believer, do you recollect the day when your fetters fell off? Do you remember the place when Jesus met you, and said, "I have loved thee with an everlasting love; I have blotted out as a cloud thy transgressions, and as a thick cloud thy sins; they shall not be mentioned against thee any more for ever." Oh! what a sweet season is that when Jesus takes away the pain of sin. When the Lord first pardoned my sin, I was so joyous that I could scarce refrain from dancing. I thought on my road home from the house where I had been set at liberty, that I must tell the stones in the street the story of my deliverance. So full was my soul of joy, that I wanted to tell every snow-flake that was falling from heaven of the wondrous love of Jesus, who had blotted out the sins of one of the chief of rebels. But it is not only at the commencement of the Christian life that believers have reason for song; as long as they live they discover cause to sing in the ways of the Lord, and their experience of His constant lovingkindness leads them to say, "I will bless the Lord at all times: His praise shall continually be in my mouth." See to it, brother, that thou magnifiest the Lord this day.
"Long as we tread this desert land, New mercies shall new songs demand."

C.H. Spurgeon, Morning and Evening