Totality in One

Context: A quiet day today. I made breakfast and took it back to bed, which is something I very rarely do. The morning brought the reflective verses below, whilst part of the afternoon was spent gardening in breezy sunshine under a beautiful blue sky.


God said to Moses, “I am Yahweh – ‘the LORD'”
(Exodus 6:2; NLT).

God,
Totality in One,
More brilliant than the rising sun;
No time, beginning, limit, end:
I love you.

God,
Eternity within,
No hate, or fear; no greed, or sin;
Pure love, light, fire; pure truth and peace:
I praise you.

God,
The mystery in all,
Concealed by darkness, yet you call
On me to worship, learn, and grow
Like you.

Put on your new nature, and be renewed
as you learn to know your Creator
and become like him (Colossians 3:10; NLT). 

God’s presence

I will lie down and sleep peacefully,
for you, Lord,
make me safe and secure
(Psalm 4:8; NET). 

1. I sleep in your presence,
Absorbing your love,
Soothed by your peace, Lord,
And safe in your arms.

2. I wake in your presence,
Suffused by your light,
Hearing your voice, Lord,
And learning your truth.

3. I rise in your presence,
Accepting each loss,
And, trusting your strength, Lord,
I take up my cross.

If any of you wants to be my follower,
you must turn from your selfish ways,
take up your cross daily, and follow me
(Luke 9:23; NLT).


References 

1. God is love (1 John 4:8; NLT).

He loves us with unfailing love (Psalm 117:2; NLT).

The Lord is peace (Judges 6:24; NLT). 

I myself will tend my sheep and give them a place to lie down in peace, says the Sovereign Lord (Ezekiel 34:15; NLT).

The everlasting Gods is a refuge, and underneath you are his eternal arms (Deuteronomy 33:27; NET).

2. When I wake up, you are still with me! (Psalm 139:18; NLT).

God is light (1 John 1:5; NLT).

God speaks time and again, but a person may not notice it (Job 33:14; CSB). 

The Spirit is truth (1 John 5:6; NKJV).

Mary sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught (Luke 10:39; NLT).

3. Rise and stand on your feet; for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to make you a minister and a witness both of the things which you have seen and of the things which I will yet reveal to you (Acts 26:16; NKJV). 

Should we accept only good things from the hand of God, and never anything bad? (Job 2:10; NLT).

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

The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord (Job 1:21; CSB). 

Though the Lord gave you adversity for food and suffering for drink, he will still be with you to teach you (Isaiah 30:20; NLT).

The Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength (Isaiah 26:4; KJV).

The Lord is my strength and shield. I trust him with all my heart. He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy (Psalm 28:7; NLT). 

In your strength I can crush an army; with my God I can scale any wall (Psalm 18:29; NLT). 

Faith

Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see (Hebrews 11:1; NLT).

The Apostles said to the Lord, “Give us faith” (Luke 17:5; WNT). 

Please give me, Lord, the faith I need
To talk with you both night and day,
To listen, learn, and grow like you,
By following your way.

Please give me, Lord, the faith I need
To pray for others day and night,
And serve you in all humankind,
By walking in your light.

Please give me, Lord, the faith I need
To worship you unceasingly,
To praise your name, and seek your face,
By trusting you implicitly.

It is by grace you have been saved, through faith and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God (Ephesians 2:8; NIV).

Through Christ you have come to trust in God. And you have placed your faith and hope in God because he raised Christ from the dead and gave him great glory (1 Peter 1:21; NLT). 

Gain and loss

Naked I came from my mother’s womb,
and naked I will leave this life.
The Lord gives and the Lord takes away.
Blessed be the name of the Lord (Job 1:21; CSB).

Rejoice always, pray continually,
give thanks in all circumstances
(1 Thessalonians 5:16-18; NIV). 

Lord,
You give me all I have,
And also take away:
May I welcome every loss
With praise and thanks, each day.

Lord,
You give me all I have,
And also take away:
May I learn from all you send,
Grow, serve you, and obey.

Lord,
You give me all I have,
And also take away:
May I trust you, cling, rejoice,
And never cease to pray.

Lord,
You give me all I have,
And also take away:
So, I beg you to bring good
From all things, come what may.

We know that in all things God works for good with those who love him,
those whom he has called according to his purpose
(Romans 8:28; GNT).

A step ahead

The Lord went ahead of them (Exodus 13:21; NLT). 

1. Lord,
You’re just a step ahead:
My hope, my strength, my wine, my bread;
I want to learn from all you said
And serve you.

2. Lord,
You’re always very near:
My help, when I am faced with fear;
I want to follow, thank, revere
And serve you.

3. Lord,
You’re just a breath away:
My light, my truth, my life, my way;
May I grow more like you each day
And serve you.

Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine,
you did for me (Matthew 25:40; NIV).


References

1. My hope is in you (Psalm 39:7; CSB). 

The sovereign Lord is my source of strength Habakkuk 3 10; NET).

He took the cup of wine after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant between God and his people – an agreement confirmed with my blood. Do this to remember me as often as you drink it” (1 Corinthians 11:25; NLT). 

I am the living bread that came down from from heaven (John 6:51; NLT).

Learn from me (Matthew 11:29; NIV). 

Serve only the Lord your God (Deuteronomy 13:4. NLT). 

2. We give thanks because you are near, Lord (Psalm 75:1; NLT). 

God is my help (Psalm 54:4; NIV). 

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

Follow me and be my disciple (Matthew 9:9; NLT).

Give thanks in all circumstances (1 Thessalonians 5:18; NIV). 

Let all the people of the world revere him (Psalm 33:8; NIV).

Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all (Mark 9:35; NIV).

3. The Spirit of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty gives me life (Job 33:4; NLT).

I am the light of the world (John 8:12; NLT).

Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6; NLT).

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). 

Serve the Lord with all your heart (1 Samuel 12:20; NIV). 

Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me (Matthew 25:40; NIV).

If you can’t imagine God

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord.
“And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine”
(Isaiah 55:8; NLT).

God’s voice is glorious in the thunder.
We can’t even imagine the greatness of his power
(Job 37:23; NLT).

1. If you can’t imagine God,
Picture Christ, alone.

2. If you can’t believe in God,
Trust in Christ, alone.

3. If you long to know the truth,
Learn from Christ, alone.

4. If you cannot find your way,
Follow Christ, alone.

5. If you’re walking in the dark,
Cling to Christ, alone.

6. If you thirst for inner peace,
Rest in Christ, alone.

7. If you feel unheard, unloved,
Pray to Christ, alone,

8. And if you want to live in God,
Unite with Christ, alone. 

Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father!
(John 14:9; NLT).


References

1. The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being (Hebrews 1:3; NIV).

In Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form (Colossians 2:9; NIV).

Christ is the visible image of the invisible God (Colossians 1:15; NLT).

2. Trust also in me (John 14:1; NLT). 

3. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me (Matthew 11:29; NIV). 

4. If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me (Luke 9:23; NLT).

5. Listen to his voice and cling to him (Deuteronomy 13:4; NLT). 

6. Jesus said, “Come to me all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28-30; NLT).

7. He loves us with unfailing love (Psalm 117:2; NLT).

Pray continually (1 Thessalonians 5:17; NIV). 

8. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them (1 John 4:16; NIV).

Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.” Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!” (John 20:26-8; NIV). 

So you also are complete through your union with Christ (Colossians 2:10; NLT). 

More questions

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

1. What makes life on earth worth living?

Loving people, and forgiving;
Prayer, rejoicing, and thanksgiving –
Letting Jesus in.

2. What makes faith in Christ worth choosing? 

Peace, despite the world’s abusing;
Gain, in spite of all we’re losing –
Following our King.

3. What makes trouble worth enduring?

Learning, growing, and maturing;
Meeting others, helping – turning
Minds and souls to Him.

4. What makes Jesus’ way worth taking?  

Service, though our hearts are breaking –
So, choose Christ, all else forsaking,
And unite with Him.

For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with him (Philippians 3:9; NLT).


References 

1. My life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus – the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God (Acts 20:24; NLT). 

Rejoice always, pray constantly, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18; RSV).

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

Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends (Revelation 3:20; NLT).

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

I am leaving you with a gift – peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid (John 14:27; NLT).

Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will leave this life. The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord (Job 1:21; CSB). 

If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me (Luke 9:23; NLT).

On his robe at his thigh was written this title: King of all kings and Lord of all lords (Revelation 19:16; NLT).

3. When troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow (James 1:2-3; NLT).

God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him (James 1:12; NLT).

Grow to maturity (2 Corinthians 13:11; NLT).

Whoever wants to be first must take last place and be the servant of everyone else (Mark 9:35; NLT).

Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone (Mark 16:15; NLT). 

Each of you must repent and turn to God, and be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38; NLT).

4. Father, if you are willing, please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine (Luke 22:42; NLT). 

Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing (Luke 23:34; NLT).

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

You also are complete through your union with Christ (Colossians 2:10; NLT). 

Two short prayers

1. I love you, Lord 


You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind (Luke 10:27; NLT).

I love you, Lord,
With all my mind,
And trust in you alone.

I love you, Lord,
With all my heart,
And follow you alone.

I love you, Lord,
With all my soul,
And worship you alone.

I love you, Lord,
With all my strength,
And serve you, Lord, alone.

🖤

Serve him alone (Matthew 4:10; CPDV).

Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me (Matthew 25:40; NIV).

 


2. I love you more, Lord


I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding (Philippians 1:9; NLT). 

I love you more, Lord,
Every day,
And pray to you alone.

I love you more
With every step,
And learn from you alone.

I love you more
With every test,
And cleave to you alone.

I love you more
With every breath,
And live in you alone.

🖤

We know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them (1 John 4:16; NIV).

 


Joined

When I wake up, you are still with me (Psalm 139:18; NLT).

Don’t you know that your bodies are a part of Christ’s body?
(1 Corinthians 6:15; CSB).

Wake with Jesus, joined in love;
Talk with Jesus, joined in prayer.
Go with Jesus, joined in hope;
Serve with Jesus, joined in care.

Laugh with Jesus, joined in cheer;
Weep with Jesus, joined in grief.
Eat with Jesus, joined in thanks;
Rest with Jesus, joined in peace.

Learn with Jesus, joined in truth;
Kneel with Jesus, joined in praise.
Live with Jesus, joined in faith –
One with Jesus, all your days.

🖤

The person who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with him.
(1 Corinthians 6:17; NLT).

 


Show us your Son


“Mary!” Jesus said. She turned to him and cried out, “Rabboni!”
(which is Hebrew for “Teacher”).
(John 20:16; NLT). 

Lord,

Show us your Son
Till all of us turn to him.

Show us his fire
Till our icy hearts burn.

Show us his peace
Till all of us trust in him.

Show us his truth
Till our stubborn hearts learn.

Show us his way,
Till all of us follow him.

Show us his love
Till our hearts are made new.

Show us his light
Till all of us worship him.

Show us his life
Till, at last, we see you.

✝️

Jesus replied, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and yet you still don’t know who I am? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father!”
(John 14:9; NLT).