Your cross (for Keith)

Image: Ruth Kirk


🧡

The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction.
But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God
(1 Corinthians 1:18; NLT).

1. Your cross
Is all that gives me patience:
It’s my peace, my truth,
My guide.

2. Your cross
Is all that gives me comfort,
Showing me
You’re at my side.

3. Your cross
Is all that gives me courage
In my fear, and grief,
And pain.

4. Your cross
Is all that gives me strength
To call upon
Your holy name.

He made you holy by means of Christ Jesus,
just as he did for people everywhere
who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,
their Lord and ours
(1 Corinthians 1:2; NLT).

🧡

What can I offer?

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✝️

What can I offer the Lord for all he has done for me?
(Psalm 116:12; NLT).

I offer you my weak, frail flesh,
Stripped of all the health and strength of youth.
It’s yours already, Lord, for you conceived it,
Yet I have nothing else to give, in truth.

I offer you my damaged mind,
Stripped of all my hopes of paradise.
It’s yours already, Lord, for you ordained it,
But I have nothing else to sacrifice.

I offer you my small, hard heart,
Stripped of all my faith, and peace, and trust.
It’s yours already, Lord, for you assigned it,
Yet I have nothing else to yield, but dust.

I offer you my sinful life,
Stripped of all grace, though you dwell in my soul.
It’s yours already, Lord, for I’m your temple,
But you are the only part of me that’s whole.

Offer every part of yourself to him
(Romans 6:13; NIV).

✝️

Hold me fast

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❤️

Your right hand will hold me fast
(Psalm 139:10; NIV).

1. Hold me fast, Lord,
When I stumble.

2. Hold me
When I go astray.

3. Hold me close
When I’m in danger.

4. Hold me
When I cannot pray.

5. Hold me safe, Lord,
When I suffer.

6. Hold me
When I plead, and cry.

7. Hold me tight
When I’m afraid,

8. And hold me, Lord,
When I must die.

Though I walk in the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil: for thou art with me
(Psalm 23:4; KJV).

❤️


References

1. They have stumbled off the ancient highways (Jeremiah 18:15; NLT).

2. I have strayed like a lost sheep (Psalm 119:176; NIV).

3. The Lord will hold me close (Psalm 27:10; NLT).

4. We do not know how to pray as we ought (Romans 8:26; RSV).

5. You hold me safe (Psalm 18:48; NLT).

In all their suffering he also suffered (Isaiah 63:9; NLT).

6. Hear my prayer, O Lord; let my cry come to you (Psalm 102:1; ESV).

7. Your strong right hand holds me securely (Psalm 63:8; NLT).

When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you (Psalm 56:3; NLT).

8. No one can live forever; all will die (Psalm 89:48; NLT).

I am continually with you; you hold me by my right hand (Psalm 73:23; NKJV).

Humility

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Always be humble and gentle
(Ephesians 4:2; NLT).

The Bible tells us that God wants us to grow in humility. Mother Theresa of Calcutta, who is now a Saint, saw the process of learning to become more humble as a set of specific, concrete measures we can practice every day.

Her advice is easy to understand, but much harder to follow. Over time, though, by embracing her approach and making it our own, we can gradually learn to respond to people and events with greater acceptance and humility.

I first posted these teachings as a series of daily quotations on Twitter and Facebook. When that project was complete, I decided to draw them together, and make them available here.

Each quotation is followed by an illustrative verse from the Bible or few words of clarification. I hope very much that you will find Mother Theresa’s clear, practical advice as helpful as I do.


1. Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters:
You must all be quick to listen
[and] slow to speak
(James 1:19; NLT).



2. Aspire to live quietly,
to mind your own affairs,
and to work with your own hands
(1 Thessalonians 4:10; RSV).


3. You should mind your own business
(1 Thessalonians 4:11; NIV).



4. They have an insatiable curiosity to hear new things
(2 Timothy 4:3; NET).



5. Be patient with each other,
making allowance for each other’s faults
because of your love
(Ephesians 4:2; NLT).


6. Whoever learns from correction is wise
(Proverbs 15:5; NLT).


7. How can you say to your brother,
‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’
when all the time there is a plank in your own eye?
You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye,
and then you will see clearly to remove the speck
from your brother’s eye
(Matthew 7:4-5; NIV).



8. Do not judge others, and you will not be judged.
For you will be treated as you treat others.
The standard you use in judging
is the standard by which you will be judged
(Matthew 7:1-2; NLT).


9. He was oppressed and treated harshly,
yet he never said a word
(Isaiah 53:7; NLT).


1o. He was led like a lamb to the slaughter,
yet he never said a word

(Isaiah 53:7; NLT).


11. The wisdom from above is first of all pure.
It is also peace-loving,
gentle at all times,
and willing to yield to others
(James 3:17; NLT).

NB: This doesn’t mean letting people walk all over you. It means letting others choose, and gladly going along with their choice, rather than insisting on having your own way.



12. He was despised and we did not care
(Isaiah 53:3; NLT).



13. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way
(Isaiah 53:3; NLT).


14. A gentle answer deflects anger,
but harsh words make tempers flare

(Proverbs 15:1; NLT).



15. They brag loudly about themselves
(Jude 1:16; NLT).

Don’t do your good deeds publicly,
to be admired by others
(Matthew 6:1; NLT).


16. Whoever wants to be first among you
must be the slave of all
(Mark 10:44; NET).



17. Do not be wise in your own opinion
(Romans 12:16; NKJV).


18. Even the Son of Man came not to be served
but to serve others,
and to give his life as a ransom for many
(Matthew 20:28; NLT).


Reference

All the quotations used here can be found by doing a Google search for: “Mother Theresa humility list”. I am very grateful to Mother for putting her advice list together, and to all those who circulate various versions of it online.

Life brings trials

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🤎

1. Life brings trials and suffering,
But hardest of them all
Is living without faith in God
When we reject his call.

2. Life brings riches, fame, success;
We think these things are good,
But we don’t see how poor we are
When we reject his love.

3. Life brings failure, loss, regret,
Which we will have to bear,
And we must face them all alone
When we reject his care.

4. Life brings battles, thrills, and spills —
We think we’re doing well,
But when we spurn the Lord, our God,
We truly live in hell.

🤎


References

1. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows (John 16:33; NLT).

Don’t let the excitement of youth cause you to forget your Creator. Honour him in your youth before you grow old and say, “Life is not pleasant any more” (Ecclesiastes 12:1; NLT).

The fool says in his heart, “There is no God” (Psalm 14:1; NIV).

2. You say, “I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.” But you do not realise that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked (Revelation 3:17; NIV).

3. When times are good, be happy; but when times are bad, consider this: God has made the one as well as the other (Ecclesiastes 7:14; NIV).

Remember him – before the silver cord is severed, and the golden bowl is broken; before the pitcher is shattered at the spring, and the wheel broken at the well, and the dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it
(Ecclesiastes 12:6-7; NIV).

They do not fear God (Psalm 55:19; NLT).

The Lord looks down from heaven on all mankind to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God. All have turned away, all have become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one. Do all these evildoers know nothing? They devour my people as though eating bread; they never call on the Lord (Psalm 14:2-4; NIV).

4. The people replied, “Don’t waste your breath. We will continue to live as we want to, stubbornly following our own evil desires (Jeremiah 18:12; NLT).

You lived in this world without God and without hope (Ephesians 2:12; NLT).

She says to him, “Stolen water is sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant.” But he does not know that the dead are there, that her guests are in the depths of hell (Proverbs 9:16-18; NKJV).

You will see what an evil, bitter thing it is to abandon the Lord your God (Jeremiah 2:19; NLT).

There is a great chasm separating us. No one can cross over to you from here, and no one can cross over to us from there (Luke 16:27; NLT).

Fear only God, who can destroy both soul and body in hell (Matthew 10:28; NLT).

When we cannot walk by faith (with thanks to David)

Image: Mareks Steins, Unsplash


🤎

We walk by faith, not by sight
(2 Corinthians 5:7; NKJV).

1. When we cannot walk by faith,
The Lord is with us:
We are safe.

2. When we cannot see his light,
Jesus guides us
Through the night.

3. When we cannot praise, or pray,
His Spirit pleads for us
Each day;

4. And even when we lose all trust,
He’s still holding fast
To us!

Your strong right hand holds me securely
(Psalm 63:8; NLT).

🤎


References

1. I know the Lord is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me (Psalm 16:8; NLT).

You alone, O Lord, will keep me safe (Psalm 4:8; NLT).

2. If you are walking in darkness, without a ray of light, trust in the Lord and rely on your God (Isaiah 50:10; NLT).

I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life (John 8:12; NLT).

3. The Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with sighs too deep for words (Romans 8:26; RSV).

4. My God, my God, why have you abandoned me? (Psalm 22:1; NLT).

Your strong right hand holds me securely (Psalm 63:8; NLT).

Look for the Father

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✝️

1. Look for the Father
Who dwells deep within,
Stirring our hearts
To repent of our sin.

2. Seek the Messiah
Who comes from above,
Sharing our anguish,
Outpouring his love.

3. Search for the Spirit
Who falls from on high,
Comforting everyone,
Hearing each sigh.

4. Turn to the Godhead
Who lives in us all –
Ask his forgiveness,
And welcome his call.

✝️


References

1. You are the temple of the living God (2 Corinthians 6:16; NLT).

Repent of your sins (Matthew 4:17; NLT).

2. I have come down from heaven to do the will of God who sent me (John 6:38; NLT).

In all their suffering he also suffered (Isaiah 63:9; NLT).

Christ is all that matters, and he lives in all of us (Colossians 3:11; NLT).

3. The Holy Spirit fell upon them (Acts 11:15; NKJV).

He will give you another Comforter, that he may be with you for ever (John 14:16; DBY).

Don’t you realise that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you? (1 Corinthians 3:16; NLT).

4. Turn to God (Matthew 4:17; NLT).

In him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead (Colossians 2:9; ASV).

We will come and make our home with each of them (John 14:23; NLT).

Perhaps even yet they will turn from their evil ways and ask the Lord’s forgiveness before it is too late (Jeremiah 36:7; NLT).

He calls people (Romans 9:12; NLT).

Hold fast!

Image: Alexander Sopin, Unsplash


1. Walk by faith
And not by sight:
God is in
Your darkest night.

2. Never cease to pray
And love:
Blindly, trust
Christ’s saving blood.

3. You will see his face
At last:
So never give up hope –
Hold fast!


References

1. We walk by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7; NLT).

Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me (Psalm 23:4; NLT).

2. Never stop praying (1 Thessalonians 5:17; NLT).

The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love (Galatians 5:6; NIV).

3. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face (1 Corinthians 13:12; NRSV).

Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance (1 Corinthians 13:7; NLT).

Hold fast to the Lord your God (Joshua 23:8; NIV).

Your will

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❤️

I desire to do your will, my God (Psalm 40:8; NLT).

1. Father,
Please remove from me
All foolish pride and vanity;
All judging of my fellows, Lord:

Your will, my mind –
In full accord.

2. Father,
Please remove from me
All selfishness and jealousy;
All quarrelling, and hatred, Lord:

Your will, my heart –
In true accord.

3. Father,
Please remove from me
All arrogance and gluttony;
All callousness, and slander, Lord:

Your will, my soul –
In one accord.

❤️


References

1. I will not endure conceit and pride (Psalm 101:5; NLT).

Do not judge others, and you will not be judged (Luke 6:37; NLT).

Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus (Philippians 2:5; NKJV).

2. When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarrelling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties and other sins like these (Galatians 5:19-21; NLT).

He has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love (Romans 5:5; NLT).

I will give them one heart and one purpose: to worship me forever (Jeremiah 32:39; NLT).

3. From within, out of a person’s heart, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, wickedness, deceit, lustful desires, envy, slander, pride, and foolishness. All these vile things come from within; they are what defile you (Mark 7:21-22; NLT).

I hate pride and arrogance (Proverbs 8:13; NLT).

I will not tolerate people who slander their neighbours (Psalm 101:5; NLT).

He who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with him (1 Corinthians 6:17; NKJV).

Love for God

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Choose today whom you will serve
(Joshua 24:15; NLT).

1. Our love for God
Cannot be forced –
It grows throughout the years,

2. With prayer and worship,
Faith, and trust;
With sacrifice, and tears.

3. As we live
In his presence,
He will fill us to the brim,

4. Until we overflow
With love,
Becoming 
more like him.


References

1. The Lord must wait for you to come to him so he can show you his love and compassion (Isaiah 30:18; NLT).

2. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows (John 16:33; NLT).

If we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering (Romans 8:17; NLT).

3. We know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love (Romans 5:5; NLT).

4. May the Lord cause you to increase and overflow with love for one another and for everyone (1 Thessalonians 3:12; CSB).

The Lord – who is the Spirit – makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image (2 Corinthians 3:18; NLT).