Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Puritan Prayer~ The Greatest Gift: The Incarnation

O Source of all good,

What shall I render to You for the gift of gifts,
thine own dear Son, begotten, not created,
my Redeemer, proxy, surety, substitute,
his self-emptying incomprehensible,
his infinity of love beyond the heart’s grasp.

Herein is wonder of wonders:
he came below to raise me above,
was born like me that I might become like him.

Herein is love;
when I cannot rise to him he draws near on
wings of grace,
to raise me to himself.

Herein is power;
when Deity and humanity were infinitely apart
he united them in indissoluble unity,
the uncreated and the created.

Herein is wisdom;
when I was undone, with no will to return to him,
and no intellect to devise recovery,
he came, God-incarnate, to save me
to the uttermost,
as man to die my death,
to shed satisfying blood on my behalf,
to work out a perfect righteousness for me.

O God, take me in spirit to the watchful shepherds,
and enlarge my mind;
let me hear good tidings of great joy,
and hearing, believe, rejoice, praise, adore,
my conscience bathed in an ocean of repose,
my eyes uplifted to a reconciled Father;
place me with ox, ass, camel, goat,
to look with them upon my Redeemer’s face,
and in him account myself delivered from sin;
let me with Simeon clasp the new-born child
to my heart,
embrace him with undying faith,
exulting that he is mind and I am his.

In him, you have given me so much
that heaven can give no more.

~ “The Gift of Gifts”
taken from The Valley of Vision

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Back Home

Well, it is now Tuesday and I have been back in the states for a total of 2 days. My heart is still processing all of things that took place on my recent trip to the Dominican Republic. Every time I go back, I leave a portion of my heart there. I am falling more and more in love with the people there.
Today, I am heading out to deliver Christmas to a needy family in our community that our church has adopted. I am so fortunate to be a part of a faith family that takes to heart the call to "the least of these" and the mandate to "do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly". It is the thing that resonates with me the most right now as I struggle with coming back to the states and feeling the urge to go and buy gift, after gift, after gift for my own family and pleasure. Yes, I am thankful and blessed that I can do these things but is it really what I am supposed to do, in light of the gospel?
We live during a time when the economy is not what it should be and nowhere near what it used to be. There are people who are hurting and in need all around us, and yet we will still stand in line for the newest gadget, pay top dollar for a 16oz cup of coffee, and drive for miles and miles to go get that "one special gift". Yet, all the while, people all around us need hope! They need the gospel lived out around them. They need the one and only thing that will get them through the trials and heartbreaks of life, Jesus!
On our last night in the Dominican, we took some time reflecting on what the Lord had done in us, to us, and through us. We asked questions like, "what does this mean for you, when you get back home". My answer was simple. More Sacrifice

Saturday, December 17, 2011


Today was our last day in the Dominican Republic. We had a great time this morning at breakfast and then spent the afternoon in Boca Chica at the beach. This has always been a great way for the students to have a relaxing day before heading back to the states. It also serves as an opportunity for them to reflect on all that has taken place these past 10 days.
We came back to camp this evening for our trip debriefing. This is always one of the highlights of the trip, as we get to hear the stories of the students and what the Lord has done in them during their time here. We asked a few questions that serves as our springboard tonight
1. Why did you come? Why did the Lord bring you on this trip
2. What changes took place during your time here? How have you changed?
3. How will this trip affect your life back in the states?
4. What can you do to change your school, church, community
5. What is He asking you to do? Where do you need to step in obedience?

Friday, December 16, 2011


Today we spent the morning at the CEA batay. We had a great time working with the people there. The students did a great job leading out in worship, sharing the gospel, and modeling the gospel with their attitudes and actions. They have been great
We spent some time walking around with Pastor Chile' trying to assess the needs of the batay. I am really excite about what we may be able to accomplish in the future with this batay.

The Lord continues to wreck me and my heart for these people. I will be writing soon about all of it.

We took the students to a baseball game this evening in San Pedro. Tomorrow will be spent in Boca Chica. And then we will head home on Sunday

Thursday, December 15, 2011


Today was our last day in the batays of Monte Largo and Dos Hermanos. The students did a great job sharing about the crucifixion, the death, and the resurrection of our Savior. It was a tough day because we know it will be awhile before we are able to see the people of these two batays.
We were also able to add two filling stations/ faucets to the water project in Monte Largo. It was awesome to see running water coming out of the tank and both faucets going at the same time. This water project will definitely change the future for this batay. I am super excited about what the Lord allowed us to do here.
Tomorrow morning we are heading out to see Bob and Diane. They are the ones who run the orphanage called Josiah's House.
We will also be spending some time in the batay called CEA sharing the gospel, playing with children, and looking for ways to partner with them in the future.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


Today has been an awesome day. Spent some time with Steve and our new friend Jonnie, which happens to be the guy who can speak French. We finished putting in the pipes for the water project and watched as water filled the tank and was used.

I also spent some time with my friend Roberto. I remember Roberto well from last year. We had some time just hanging out.

We did our backyard Bible club stories in Monte Largo and Dos Hermanos today. The students led worship an shared the story of the birth of Jesus

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


Today we went to Monte Largo first thing in the morning. We continued our work on the platform for the water tank to sit on. The guys enjoyed mixing the concrete by hand. 4 loads of sand+ 4 loads of rock+ 2 bags of cement. We are hoping to put the tank up tomorrow and put the pipes in.
We headed to Dos Hermanos this afternoon and started our backyard Bible club. The students led out in singing and then shared the story of David and Goliath.
The students are doing great. Today is the first day that we worked in two different batays, however we will keep this schedule for the rest of our time here. Looking forward to what He has for us the rest of this week. He has already done so much

Monday, December 12, 2011


We spent the morning today at Monte Largo where we are trying to finish the water project while we are here. We are working on fixing the pipes running from the water pump which will eventually attach to the water tank we are putting in, which will allow them to store water when the government turns it on. You can see that we are working on putting the platform together that the water tank will sit on. Once we get the foundation for the tank built, which needs to be about 6 feet in the air, we will install the tank and run new lines from pump to allow them to get water when they need it.

Sunday, December 11, 2011


This morning we went and visited the church in Monte Largo. The church in Monte Largo is pastored by Pastor Manny.
I had the opportunity this morning to share in the service. As soon as I walked in, Manny informed me tat I would be speaking. I spent some time this morning walking though Hebrews 1-4 talking about the fact that Jesus is greater than all.
We will be working there over the next few days building a pump system and installing a water tank. We will also be providing a backyard Bible club for 3 days as we share the gospel with the people.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Dominican Republic2

We spent the morning at the CEA batay. This was a new batay for us to visit and we feel in love with it and the people there immediately. We spent some time singing with the children in the school that is run by the church and Pastor Chile. There are nearly 1000 people living there an about 85 percent of them are Haitian refugees.
This afternoon we were able to make it to Juan Dolio to take the students to the beach for about 1 1/2 hours and we were also able to see Irene. Irene is the lady that Steve and I made contact with this last summer. I am not totally sure she remembered us, but she did invite us back. Please continue to pray for Irene

Friday, December 9, 2011

Dominican Republic ..

We are in the colonial district eating lunch. We spent the morning ministering at a school in Santo Domingo. We had a great time with the children and are looking forward to what the Lord has for us and the school. The students are excited about going to the batays and seeing the communities that we have an ongoing ministry with. They are really looking forward to seeing some of the kids they taught and played with last year.

Stay tuned, more updates coming soon

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Church... John Stott

The church lies at the very center of the eternal purposes of God. It is not a divine afterthought. It is not an accident of history. On the contrary, the church is God's new community. For His purpose, conceived in past eternity, being worked out in history, and to be perfected in future eternity, is not just to save isolated individuals and so perpetuate our loneliness, but rather to build His church, that is, to call out of the world a people for His own glory

Monday, December 5, 2011

Puritan Prayer~ Scriptural Convictions


I approach thee with encouragements
derived from thy character,
for I am not left to feel after thee
in the darkness of my nature,
nor to worship thee as the unknown God.
I cannot find out thy perfections,
but I know thou art good,
ready to forgive, plenteous in mercy.
Thou hast displayed thy wisdom, power,
and goodness in all thy works,
and hast revealed thy will in the Scripture
of truth.

Thou hast caused it to be preserved, translated,
published, multiplied,
so that all men may possess it and find
thee in it.

Here I see thy greatness and thy grace,
thy pity and thy rectitude,
thy mercy and thy truth,
thy being and men’s hearts;
Through it thou hast magnified thy name,
and favoured mankind with the gospel.

Have mercy on me,
for I have ungratefully received thy benefits,
little improved my privileges,
made light of spiritual things,
disregarded thy messages,
contended with examples of the good,
rebukes of conscience,
admonitions of friends,
leadings of providence.

I deserve that thy kingdom be taken away from me.
Lord, I confess my sin with feeling, lamentation,
a broken heart,
a contrite spirit, self-abhorrence,
self-condemnation, self-despair.

Give me relief by Jesus my hope,
faith in his name of Saviour,
forgiveness by his blood,
strength by his presence,
holiness by his Spirit:
And let me love thee with all my heart.

(Taken from ‘The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers,’ edited by Arthur Bennett)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Dead to the Gospel?

Men and women who hear the Gospel regularly, I often fear much for you. I fear lest you become so familiar with the sounds of its doctrines, that insensibly you become dead to its power. I fear lest your religion should sink down into a little vague talk about your own weakness and corruption, and a few sentimental expressions about Christ, while real practical fighting on Christ’s side is altogether neglected. Oh, beware of this state of mind! Be doers of the Word, and not hearers only. No victory—no crown! Fight and overcome!

~ J.C. Ryle

Monday, November 28, 2011

Puritan Prayer~ Heart Corruptions

May thy Spirit speak in me that I may speak to thee.

I have no merit, let the merit of Jesus stand for me.

I am undeserving, but I look to thy tender mercy.

I am full of infirmities, wants, sin;

thou art full of grace.

I confess my sin, my frequent sin, my wilful sin;

All my powers of body and soul are defiled:

A fountain of pollution is deep within my nature.

There are chambers of foul images within my being;

I have gone from one odious room to another,

walked in a no-man’s-land of dangerous


pried into the secrets of my fallen nature.

I am utterly ashamed that I am what I am in myself;

I have no green shoot in me nor fruit, but thorns

and thistles;

I am a fading leaf that the wind drives away;

I live bare and barren as a winter tree,

unprofitable, fit to be hewn down and burnt.

Lord, dost thou have mercy on me?

Thou hast struck a heavy blow at my pride,

at the false god of self,

and I lie in pieces before thee.

But thou hast given me another Master and Lord,

thy Son, Jesus,

and now my heart is turned towards holiness,

my life speeds as an arrow from a bow

towards complete obedience to thee.

Help me in all my doings to put down sin

and to humble pride.

Save me from the love of the world and the pride

of life,

from everything that is natural to fallen man,

and let Christ’s nature be seen in me day by day.

Grant me grace to bear thy will without repining,

and delight to be

not only chiseled, squared, or fashioned,

but separated from the old rock where I have

been embedded so long,

and lifted from the quarry to the upper air,

where I may be built in Christ for ever.

(Taken from ‘The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers)

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Meaghan's Notes~Nov13

Here are my daughter's notes form my sermon this past weekend. We covered Hebrews 3: 7-19. Here is the sermon text followed by her notes. I love her heart and her willingness to allow the gospel to transform her.
....I also love the idea of reading these and at least seeing what a 14 year old girl is hearing

Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says,
“Today, if you hear his voice,
8 do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion,
on the day of testing in the wilderness,
9 where your fathers put me to the test
and saw my works for forty years.
10 Therefore I was provoked with that generation,
and said, ‘They always go astray in their heart;
they have not known my ways.’
11 As I swore in my wrath,
‘They shall not enter my rest.’”
12 Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. 13 But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. 14 For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end. 15 As it is said,
“Today, if you hear his voice,
do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.”
16 For who were those who heard and yet rebelled? Was it not all those who left Egypt led by Moses? 17 And with whom was he provoked for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness? 18 And to whom did he swear that they would not enter his rest, but to those who were disobedient? 19 So we see that they were unable to enter because of unbelief.


Hebrews 3:7-19
Psalms 95:7-11
'The rest for the people of God'
-exhort one another every day as long as it is called "today"
Today; is telling us what is taking place, time of opportunity.
The background; people of Israel were slaves of Egypt, God redeemed them out of Egypt, was not Gods will for them to stay in Egypt or wonder in the land for 40 years but to enter into the lans of cannan.
-Holy God, but also a JUST God
He didn't need a reason to punish us, -God is Holy but has Grace
As a result of their disobedience they were not aloud into the Holy Land.
Hebrews think with their mind and heart, Israel went their own way. They continue in the false belief even after God had blessed them everyday, they had manna every day.
Israel put God to test.
Is their times in your life you test God?
Yes we all do, daily, but how often?
When we test God we are putting him on trial, when it doesn't work your way you just are done.

Rest- no activity, 'be still and know that I am God' getting into a place where we can in our own mind set rest.
scripture says for us to rest in Christ alone. We as people try to do things on our own and disobey, when Christ is in control. 'You of little faith why did you doubt me?'
Cease striving
God is in control
How often do I offend God?

-When I step out in my own human effort I'm just making noise.

Even with our talent we still must rest in the talent He has given you.
The more you dig into his word the holy spirit will lead you.
We need to be a people who will enjoy the rest we find in Jesus.

The gospel is not based on what we can do for him but what he does for us.

Eph 2:8-9 'grace'
I and the the father are one
Romans 8 'the apostle Paul' 39 nothing can separate from the love of God, God will glorify us, he wants us to enjoy him forever
What can we do to walk and hopefully get on the mind set of resting in him?
Encourage one another everyday!
Lead each other closer to christ and rest in him so none of us may be hardened by the deceitfulness of men.
We are called to love one another.
We are his house, God rules and rains.
Hold onto Jesus
Consider Jesus
When you got Jesus you can make it through anything.
Even on the mist of blessing they disobeyed so they had to wonder.
Eph 1:3-14
We shall be holy and blameless before him. In him we have obtained an inheritance. 14Who is guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of those who are Gods possession- to the praise of his glory.
At the time of doing our own thing that is when we start to have a hardened heart, praise be to God that we can have rest in him.
We need to find our rest in him, no matter what we go through.
Be the body that rest in Christ alone, Rejoice in ALL things

Sunday November 13

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


William Barclay said, "For most of us the thrust of life is not so much that we should plunge into disaster, but that we should drift into sin. There are few people who deliberately and in a moment turn their backs on God; there are many who day-by-day drift farther and farther away from Him. There are not many who in one moment of time commit some disastrous sin; there are many who, bit by bit and almost imperceptibly, involve themselves in some situation, and suddenly awake to find that they have ruined life for themselves and broken someone else's heart. We would do well to be continually on the alert against the peril of the drifting life"

Hebrews 2:1 "Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it"

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Meaghan's Notes- Nov6

Once again, these are the notes my daughter took from my sermon this morning. Loving that my daughter is listening and taking it all in.
I will also issue the warning that there is a great deal of type text in these notes. Hopefully you can follow. Thankful she is willing to share with me what she is getting out of the messages.

"Oh praise the one who paid my debt" Psalms 107

Hebrews 3:1-6- Jesus greater than Moses 

The builder of all things is God. 
We are to be holy because he is holy we must consider his holiness. He is an apostle and high priest. Consider Jesus

He is the high priest. He represents us, he pleads  with us the cause of God and pleads with God our cause.

Reconcile to our God, he was faithful to him just as Moses was faithful to his (God) house. 
Exodus 32:9
Delivering Gods people, did they even appreciate what Moses had done, were they rebellious, yea. 

Jesus came in the flesh to recapture and restore all of us! Jesus is our deliverer. Do we appreciate what He has done? Or are we just like those who Moses led out of captivity ?

Have we made other Gods in our lives? 
Moses delivering Gods people, Moses pleads for the forgiveness  of the people on their behalf. 

Even as Jesus walked in flesh, he still gave it all even when he was ridiculed by the people. Jesus is greater than Moses.
He is:: Creator

Moses was a servant for the house of God. Christ is faithful and over the house of God. He adopted us as children of God.
Jesus is Gods son, over Gods family which moses is apart of.
Moses is Gods servant. Jesus is the Son. Jesus is over the family. Moses is a part I the family.

Have we settled for something other than Christ alone?
He has for all of us great plans

Who is Jesus to you? Is he better than everything else to you? 

Thank Jesus for doing all that he does for you. 

We still have to be disciplined to what Christ wants us to do in our lives. 

Our body is the temple of the living God! We are the house. We are His. Our body is what God has given to us. 'Jesus you you hold me together when everything falls apart your the only hope for this heart.'          

  God teach me to what it looks like to be faithful to be an apostle to be a servant to walk in the gospel where ever I go.

Jesus is greater than everything. He is before all things. He was sent in the flesh,  He laid the foundation, he is our high priest, and He restores and rescues us.

God is in control even when I look around and see chaos I have to understand that He is in control. 
He will never leave you nor forsake you.
He is a Reckless lover. Created us.
Called us 2 worship him, will we worship in the fullness of who we are? EVERYTHING!!  
Consider Jesus!!


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Meaghan's Notes

These are the notes my daughter took on my wife's phone this morning during the sermon. Fair warning, there is a great deal of text type in these notes. I love the fact that she is listening and wanted to share these with us.

Hebrews 2:10-18
The founder of salvation
Why the incarnation? Why did this have to happen?
Sin entered into the world bc of Adam n eve
Psalms 22
Isaiah :17
Life long slavery, at the fall we began to be subject to evil. Jesus came in the flesh he is holy and divine n at the same time as he walked here on earth he was of the flesh. He understands the very things that we go through. He is able to help us when we are tempted
he came to rescue redeem us to reconcile all of humanity to him we have to believe we were created to be in a divine n intimate relationship with him. Everything that we do should bring glory to him.
To do justice to love kindness and walk humbly with our God.
He came to redeem the brokenness , the debt of sin had to be paid. God loves us so much that he gave his one and only son that so he could do what we can't do for ourselves.
He came in fulfillment of the scriptures and partook of the flesh he was arrested crucified he died put in A tomb n three days later he rose from the grave. He became flesh and blood bc he had to save flesh and blood. he came and fixed it to redeem sinners n to reveal a true and personal God who could help us through the things we walk through. Through his suffering he was made complete n perfect.
As we walk through suffering we can see that my God my king walked throughout it to because he came down n became flesh n suffered just like we suffer he was tempted by the devil and he stood and made it through. He himself has suffered so he can help us when we suffer. For he who sanctities and those who are sanctified all have one source.
God you are good u are all things u hold all things together I serve a risen savior!!
This has to be apart of the gospel if you leave him on the cross or tomb He is still dead but he rose from the dead!!
It was planned that a holy God came in flesh in blood and saved us.
Brings about restoration
What does it mean for you today?
Why is it important?
We are just not good enough to do it on our own.
Life is short ~it is important to do what you can to model the gospel.
As you walk through suffering, n help others through their suffering what can you do to lead them to the gospel
And he himself has suffered he is help to us who suffer

Became one of us
To walk with us
To help us through our suffering

God said it was GOOD and WE messed it up, so he sent his one and only son to come and die for us
God loves YOU
It is the reason by he came to walk among us n forgive us of our sins, we have all called to be reconciled to a Holy God
Take a risk to show that God is a Holy God
God has put you in this place for a reason to spread the gospel.
God will you continue to change me and help me walk through my struggle. He understands all that we have gone though and what we are going through

Made like us in everything so that he might become a merciful and high priest
We can stand on Christ Jesus
God created everything to be beautiful and we messed it up
I am victorious in-spite of who i am
He calls for us to be holy because he is holy rest in him the king of kings the lord of lords
"He's my brother he's my friend he the beginning and the end"
The one who created it all reconciled it all
He makes it good.


Monday, October 24, 2011

Puritan Prayer~ The Trinity

Three in One, One in Three, God of my Salvation,

Heavenly Father, blessed Son, eternal Spirit,
I adore you as one Being, one Essence,
one God in three distinct Persons,
for bringing sinners to your knowledge and to
thy kingdom.

O Father, thou hast loved me and sent Jesus to
redeem me;

O Jesus, thou hast loved me and assumed my
shed thine own blood to wash away my sins,
wrought righteousness to cover my

O Holy Spirit, you have loved and entered
my heart, implanted there eternal life,
revealed to me the glories of Jesus.

Three Persons and one God, I bless and praise thee,
for love so unmerited, so unspeakable,
so wondrous, so mighty to save the lost
and raise them to glory.

O Father, I thank thee that in fullness of grace
thou hast given me to Jesus, to be his sheep,
jewel, portion;

O Jesus, I thank thee that in fullness of grace
thou have accepted, espoused, bound me;

O Holy Spirit, I thank thee that in fullness of
grace you have
exhibited Jesus as my salvation,
implanted faith within me,
subdued my stubborn heart,
made me one with him for ever.

O Father, thou are enthroned to hear my prayers,
O Jesus, thy hand is outstretched to take my petitions,
O Holy Spirit, thou art willing to help my
infirmities, to show me my need,
to supply words, to pray within me,
to strengthened me that I faint not in supplication.

O Triune God, who commandeth the universe,
thou hast commanded me to ask for those
things that concern thy kingdom and my soul.

Let me live and pray as one baptized into the threefold Name.

(Taken from ‘The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers,’ edited by Arthur Bennett)

Friday, October 21, 2011

Puritan Prayer~ Divine Mercies

Thou Eternal God,

Thine is surpassing greatness, unspeakable
goodness, super-abundant grace;
I can as soon count the sands of ocean’s ‘lip’
as number Thy favours towards me;
I know but a part – but that part exceeds all praise.

I thank Thee for personal mercies,
a measure of health, preservation of body,
comforts of house and home, sufficiency of food
and clothing,
continuance of mental powers,
my family, their mutual help and support,
the delights of domestic harmony and peace,
the seats now filled that might have been vacant,
my country, church, Bible, faith.

But, Oh, how I mourn my sin, ingratitude, vileness,
the days that add to my guilt,
the scenes that witness my offending tongue;
All things in heaven, earth, around, within, without, condemn me –
the sun which sees my misdeeds,
the darkness which is light to Thee,
the cruel accuser who justly charges me,
the good angels who have been provoked to leave me,
Thy countenance which scans my secret sins,
Thy righteous law, Thy holy Word,
my sin-soiled conscience, my private and public life,
my neighbors, myself –
all write dark things against me.

I deny them not, frame no excuse, but confess,
‘Father, I have sinned’;
Yet still I live, and fly repenting to Thy outstretched arms;
Thou wilt not cast me off, for Jesus brings me near,
Thou wilt not condemn me, for He died in my stead,
Thou wilt not mark my mountains of sin,
for He levelled all,
and His beauty covers my deformities.

Oh my God, I bid farewell to sin by clinging
to His cross, hiding in His wounds, and sheltering in His side.

(Taken from ‘The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers,’ edited by Arthur Bennett)

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Puritan Prayer~ Worship

Glorious God,

It is the flame of my life to worship thee,
the crown and glory of my soul to adore thee,
heavenly pleasure to approach thee.

Give me power by the Spirit to help me
worship now,
that I may forget the world,
be brought into the fullness of life,
be refreshed, comforted, blessed.

Give me knowledge of thy goodness
that I might not be over-awed by they greatness;
Give me Jesus, Son of Man, Son of God,
that I might not be terrified,
but drawn near with filial love,
with holy boldness;

He is my Mediator, Brother, Interpreter,
Branch, Daysman, Lamb;
him I glorify,
in him I am set on high.

Crowns to give I have none,
but what thou hast given I return,
content to feel that everything is mine
when it is thine,
and the more fully mine when I have yielded it
to thee.

Let me live wholly to my Saviour,
free from distractions,
from carking care,
from hindrances to the pursuit
of the narrow way.

I am pardoned through the blood of Jesus-
give me a new sense of it,
continue to pardon me by it,
may I come every day to the fountain,
and every day to be washed anew,
that I may worship thee always
in spirit and truth.

(Taken from ‘The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers,’ edited by Arthur Bennett)

Monday, October 17, 2011

Puritan Prayer~ God Enjoyed

Thou Incomprehensible
But Prayer-hearing God,

Known, but beyond knowledge,
revealed, but unrevealed,
my wants and welfare draw me to thee,
for thou hast never said, ‘Seek ye me in vain’.

To Thee I come in my difficulties, necessities, distresses;
possess me with thyself,
with a spirit of grace and supplication,
with a prayerful attitude of mind,
with access into warmth of fellowship,
so that in the ordinary concerns of life
my thoughts and desires may rise to thee,
and in habitual devotion I may find a resource
that will soothe my sorrows,
sanctify my successes,
and qualify me in all ways for dealings with my fellow men.

I bless thee that thou hast made me capable.
of knowing thee, the author of all being,
of resembling thee, the perfection of all excellency,
of enjoying thee, the source of all happiness.

O God, attend me in every part of my arduous and trying pilgrimage;
I need the same counsel, defense, comfort I found at my beginning.
Let my religion be more obvious to my conscience,
more perceptible to those around.
While Jesus is representing me in heaven, may I reflect him on earth,
While he pleads my cause, may I show forth his praise.

Continue the gentleness of thy goodness towards me,
And whether I wake or sleep, let thy presence go with me,
thy blessing attend me.

Thou hast led me on and I have found thy promises true,
I have been sorrowful, but thou hast been my help,
fearful, but thou hast delivered me,
despairing, but thou hast lifted me up.
Thy vows are ever upon me,
And I praise thee, O God.

(Taken from ‘The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers,’ edited by Arthur Bennett)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Puritan Prayer~ Man's Great End

Lord of all being,

There is one thing that deserves my greatest care,
that calls forth my ardent desires,
That is, that I may answer the great end for which
I am made –
to glorify thee who hast given me being,
and to do all the good I can for my fellow men;
Verily, life is not worth having
if it be not improved for this noble purpose.

Yet, Lord, how little is this the thought of mankind!
Most men seem to live for themselves,
without much or any regard for thy glory,
or for the good of others;
They earnestly desire and eagerly pursue
the riches, honours, pleasures of this life,
as if they supposed that wealth, greatness,
merriment, could make their immortal souls happy;
But, alas, what false delusive dreams are these!
And how miserable ere long will those be that sleep in them,
for all our happiness consists in loving thee,
and being holy as thou art holy.

O may I never fall into the tempers and vanities,
the sensuality and folly of the present world!
It is a place of inexpressible sorrow, a vast empty nothingness;
Time is a moment, a vapour,
and all its enjoyments are empty bubbles,
fleeting blasts of wind,
from which nothing satisfactory can be derived;
Give me grace always to keep in covenant with thee,
and to reject as delusion a great name here or hereafter,
together with all sinful pleasures or profits.

Help me to know continually
that there can be no true happiness,
no fulfilling of thy purpose for me,
apart from a life lived in and for
the Son of thy love.

(Taken from ‘The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers,’ edited by Arthur Bennett)

Friday, October 7, 2011

Hebrews Series

Join us this Sunday as we continue our series over Hebrews. Over the next few months we will be looking at the superiority of Christ and the finality and completeness of God's revelation and saving work in Him. God spoke through the prophets in the Hebrew Bible. Now He has spoken to us through His Son, the creator and heir of all things. Jesus Christ is the express image of God and the brightness of His Glory. Christ is our great and faithful High Priest.

This week's message, Greater Than The Angels, will be over the Hebrews 1: 5-14

For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son, today I have begotten you”? Or again, “I will be to him a father,
and he shall be to me a son”? 6 And again, when he brings the firstborn into the world, he says,
“Let all God's angels worship him.” 7 Of the angels he says, “He makes his angels winds, and his ministers a flame of fire.” 8 But of the Son he says, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom. 9 You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.” 10 And, “You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of your hands; 11 they will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like a garment, 12 like a robe you will roll them up,
like a garment they will be changed. But you are the same, and your years will have no end.” 13 And to which of the angels has he ever said, “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”?
14 Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?

Friday, September 30, 2011

GFchurch.. New Series

Join us this Sunday as we begin a new series over Hebrews. Over the next few months we will be looking at the superiority of Christ and the finality and completeness of God's revelation and saving work in Him. God spoke through the prophets in the Hebrew Bible. Now He has spoken to us through His Son, the creator and heir of all things. Jesus Christ is the express image of God and the brightness of His Glory. Christ is our great and faithful High Priest.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

SYATP~ Holy Is The Lord

Students leading out in worship this morning @GCS

SYATP~ Inside Out

Students leading out in worship this morning @GCS

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Puritan Prayer~ The All Good


Thou hast helped me to see,
that whatever good be in honour and rejoicing,
how good is He who gives them,
and can withdraw them;
that blessedness does not lie so much
in receiving good from and in Thee,
but in holding forth Thy glory and virtue;
that it is an amazing thing to see Deity
in a creature, speaking, acting,
filling, shining through it;
that nothing is good but Thee,
that I am near good when I am near Thee,
that to be like Thee is a glorious thing:
This is my magnet, my attraction.

Thou art all my good in times of peace,
my only support in days of trouble,
my one sufficiency when life shall end.

Help me to see how good Thy will is in all,
and even when it crosses mine
teach me to be pleased with it.

Grant me to feel Thee in fire, and food and every providence,
and to see that Thy many gifts and creatures
are but Thy hands and fingers taking hold of me.

Thou bottomless fountain of all good,
I give myself to Thee out of love,
for all I have or own is thine,
my goods, family, church, self,
to do with as Thou wilt,
to honour Thyself by me, and by all mine.

If it be consistent with Thy eternal counsels,
the purpose of Thy grace,
and the great ends of Thy glory,
then bestow upon me the blessings of
Thy comforts;

If not, let me resign myself to
Thy wiser determinations.

(Taken from ‘The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers,’ edited by Arthur Bennett)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Puritan Prayer~ The Mover

O Supreme Moving Cause,

May I always be subordinate to thee,
be dependent upon thee,
be found in the path where thou dost walk,
and where thy Spirit moves,
take heed of estrangement from thee,
of becoming insensible to thy love.
Thou dost not move men like stones,
but dost endue them with life,
not to enable them to move without thee,
but in submission to thee, the first mover.
O Lord, I am astonished at the difference
between my receivings and my deservings,
between the state I am now in and my past gracelessness,
between the heaven I am bound for and the hell I merit.

Who made me to differ, but thee?
for I was no more ready to receive Christ than were others;
I could not have begun to love thee hadst thou not first loved me,
or been willing unless thou hadst first made me so.
O that such a crown should fit the head of such a sinner!
such high advancement be for an unfruitful person!
such joys for so vile a rebel!

Infinite wisdom cast the design of salvation
into the mould of purchase and freedom;
Let wrath deserved be written on the door of hell,
But the free gift of grace on the gate of heaven.

I know that my sufferings are the result of my sinning,
but in heaven both shall cease;
Grant me to attain this haven and be done with sailing,
and may the gales of thy mercy blow me safely into harbour.
Let thy love draw me nearer to thyself,
wean me from sin, mortify me to this world,
and make me ready for my departure hence.

Secure me by thy grace as I sail across this stormy sea.

(Taken from ‘The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers,’ edited by Arthur Bennett)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Puritan Prayer~ “Morning Needs

O God the author of all good, I come to Thee for the grace another day will require for its duties and events. I step out into a wicked world; I carry about with me an evil heart. I know that without Thee I can do nothing, that everything with which I shall be concerned, however harmless in itself, may prove an occasion of sin or folly, unless I am kept by Thy power. Hold Thou me up and I shall be safe.

Preserve my understanding from subtilty of error, my affections from love of idols, my character from stain of vice, my profession from every form of evil. May I engage in nothing in which I cannot implore Thy blessing, and in which I cannot invite Thy inspection. Prosper me in all lawful undertakings, or prepare me for disappointments. Give me neither poverty nor riches. Feed me with food convenient for me, lest I be full and deny Thee and say, Who is the Lord? or be poor, and steal, and take Thy name in vain.

May every creature be made good to me by prayer and Thy will. Teach me how to use the world and not abuse it, to improve my talents, to redeem my time, to walk in wisdom toward those without, and in kindness to those within, to do good to all men, and especially to my fellow Christians. And to Thee be the glory.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Puritan Prayer~ “The Prayer of Love”

Gracious Lord,

Thy name is love, in love receive my prayer.

My sins are more than the wide sea’s sand, but where sin abounds, there is grace more abundant.

Look to the cross of thy beloved Son, and view the preciousness of his atoning blood;

Listen to his never-failing intercession, and whisper to my heart, ‘They sins are forgiven, be of good cheer, lie down in peace.’

Grace cataracts from heaven and flows for ever, and mercy never wearies in bestowing benefits.

Grant me more and more to prize the privilege of prayer, to come to thee as a sin-siled sinner, to find pardon in thee, to converse with thee; to know thee in prayer s the path in which my feet tread, the latch upon the door of my lips, the light that shines through my eyes, the music of my ears, the marrow of my understanding, the strength f my will, the power of my affection, the sweetness of my memory.

May the matter of my prayer be always wise, humble, submissive, obedient, scriptural, Christ-like.

Give me unwavering faith that supplications are never in vain, that if I seem not to obtain my petitions I shall have larger, richer answers, surpassing all that I ask or think.

Unsought, thou hast given me the greatest gift, the person of thy Son, and in him thou wilt give me all I need.