Life brings trials

Image: Sebastian Kolpert, Pixabay


🤎

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).

Thank you

Image: Duncan Sanchez, Unsplash


🤎

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

1. Thank you, Lord,
For all you give
To us, both good
And bad.

2. Thank you, Lord,
For all you send:
The joyful,
And the sad.

3. Thank you, Lord,
For all you grant:
For life, and health,
And loss.

4. Thank you, Lord,
For all you share:
Our fear, our pain,
Our cross.

🤎


References

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

2. 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).

3. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised (Job 1:21; NIV).

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

I have no words

Image: mystraysoul, Pixabay


💙

Rejoice always, pray continually,
give thanks in all circumstances;
for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus
(1 Thessalonians 5:16-18; NIV)
.

1. I have no words
To praise you, Lord,
To thank you,
Or accept your will.

2. I have no strength
To cry aloud;
Instead, I wait,
Alone, and still.

3. I have no voice
To beg for help,
Rejoice in you,
Or mourn my loss.

4. I have no breath
To worship you –
All I can do
Is share your cross.

💙


References

1. Praise him forever (Psalm 111:10; NLT).

If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine (Matthew 26:39; NLT).

2. My strength has dried up like sunbaked clay. My tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth. You have lain me in the dust and left me for dead (Psalm 22:15; NLT).

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him (Psalm 37:7; NIV).

Turn to me and have mercy, for I am alone and in deep distress (Psalm 25:16; NLT).

3. I am so troubled that I cannot speak (Psalm 77:4; ESV).

From the depths of despair, O Lord, I call for your help (Psalm 130:1; NLT).

Pour out your heart to him (Psalm 62:8; NLT).

I grieve over my loss (Lamentations 3:20; NLT).

4. My strength is gone, and I can hardly breathe (Daniel 10:17; NLT).

Worship the Lord in all his holy splendour (1 Chronicles 16:29; NLT).

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

Let’s go, too – and die with Jesus (John 11:16; NLT).

If we die with him, we will also live with him. If we endure hardship, we will reign with him (2 Timothy 2:11-12; NLT).

Growth (dedicated to A.K.)

Image: truthseeker08, Pixabay


❤️

Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?
(Job 2:10; NIV).

1. Lord,
May I accept my lot,
For you, alone, send joy, and pain.
Then I will grow, in exile here,
Until we meet in heaven, again.

2. Lord,
May I accept my lot,
For you, alone, bring good from ill.
Then I will grow through suffering,
And never fail to love you, still.

3. Lord,
May I accept my lot,
For you, alone, send hurt, and loss.
Then I will grow in care for all,
And comfort those who bear their cross.

4. Lord,
May I accept my lot,
For you, alone, send every test.
Then I will grow in humble faith,
And gain, at last, eternal rest.

💙


References

1. Enjoy prosperity while you can, but when hard times strike, realise that both come from God (Ecclesiastes 7:14; NLT).

2. We know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them (Romans 8:28; NLT).

When your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow (James 1:3; NLT).

3. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised (Job 1:21; NIV).

He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us (2 Corinthians 1:4, NLT).

4. The Lord your God is testing you to find out whether you love him with all your heart and with all your soul (Deuteronomy 13:3; NIV).

Then we will be with the Lord forever (1 Thessalonians 4:17; NLT). 

May I love

Image: Keith Johnston, Pixabay


🌹

There is […] one God and Father,
who is over all and in all and living through all

(Ephesians 4:5-6; NLT).

1. May I love each child, Lord God,
Because they are your cradle.

2. May I love each neighbour, Lord,
Because they are your home.

3. May I love each stranger, Lord,
Because they are your temple.

4. May I love each enemy,
Because they are your throne.

5. May I love you, Father God,
Because you make and keep me.

6. May I love you, Jesus Christ,
Because you cleanse my sin.

7. May I love you, Holy Ghost,
Because you never leave me;

8. And may I even love my self –
Because you dwell within.

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

🌹


References

1. Anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me (Matthew 18:5; NLT).

Jesus, […] though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men (Philippians 2:5-7; ESV).

2. Love your neighbour (Luke 10:27; NLT).

Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them” (John 14:23; NLT).

3. Love the stranger (Deuteronomy 10:19; NKJV).

Show love to foreigners (Deuteronomy 10:19; NLT).

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

4. Love your enemies! (Matthew 5:44; NLT).

He loves all his people (Deuteronomy 33:3; NLT).

5. 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).

Your hands shaped me and made me (Job 10:8; NIV).

The Lord keeps me alive! (Psalm 54:4; NLT).

6. Lord, you know everything. You know that I love you (John 21:17; NLT).

I will cleanse them of their sins (Jeremiah 33:8; NLT).

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

I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, [Comforter, Encourager, Counsellor] who will never leave you (John 14:16; NLT).

8. Love your neighbour as yourself (Luke 10:27; NLT).

All who live in love live in God, and God lives in them (1 John 4:16; NLT).

Instant friend

Image: see reference below, Creative Commons

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Love the stranger
(Deuteronomy 10:19; NKJV).

1. Be an instant friend
For strangers –
Everyone whose path you cross.

2. Be an instant friend
For strangers –
Those in trouble, need, or loss.

3. Be an instant friend
For strangers –
Helping is our sacred task.

4. Be an instant friend
For strangers –
Love is all our Father asks.

🤎


References

1. See the Parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:30-37; NLT).

2. Which of these three would you say was a neighbour to the man who was attacked by bandits?” Jesus asked. The man replied, “The one who showed him mercy.” Then Jesus said, “Yes, now go and do the same” (Luke 10:36-7; NLT).

3. I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me (Matthew 25:35-6; NLT).

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

Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them (Romans 12:9; NLT).

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

In due season God will judge everyone, both good and bad, for all their deeds (Ecclesiastes 3:17; NLT).


Image: “Good Samaritan (detail) – Rossano Gospels – 6th Cent. – Folio 007” by jimforest is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Love God


Image: Mabel Amber, Pixabay


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

💙

1. Love God, and all.
Give thanks, and pray.

2. Rejoice; forgive;
And serve, each day.

3. Be kind, and humble.
Bear your cross;

4. And follow Christ
Through every loss.

💙


References

1. Jesus replied, “The most important commandment is this: ‘Listen, O Israel! The Lord our God is the one and only Lord. And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’ The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these” (Mark 12:29-31; NLT).

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18; NIV).

2. If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you
(Matthew 6:14; NLT).

Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all” (Mark 9:35; NIV).

3. A servant of the Lord must not quarrel but must be kind to everyone (2 Timothy 2:24; NLT).

Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves (Philippians 2:3; NLT).

Then he said to the crowd, “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).

4. God called you to do good, even if it means suffering, just as Christ suffered for you. He is your example and you must follow in his steps (1 Peter 2:21; NLT).

Humility

Image: TheRevSteve, Creative Commons


❤️

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).

1. Help me, Lord, to be more humble
In my thoughts, and words, and deeds.
Then I’ll grow more like your Son,
And concentrate on others’ needs.

2. Help me to be more forgiving
When I’m wrongfully accused.
Then I’ll grow more like your Son,
And turn my cheek when I am bruised.

3. Help me, Lord, to be more loving
To all those whose path I cross.
Then I’ll grow more like your Son,
And gladly share their pain and loss.

❤️


References

1. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves (Philippians 2:3; NLT).

He gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being (Philippians 2:7; NLT).

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

2. If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you (Matthew 6:14; NLT).

He did not retaliate when he was insulted, nor threaten revenge when he suffered (1 Peter 2:23; NLT).

If someone slaps you on one cheek, offer the other cheek also (Luke 6:29; NLT).

3. Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them (Romans 12:9; NLT).

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

Mourn with those who mourn (Romans 12:15; NRSV).

Start afresh

Image: Marc Torfs, Pixabay


His mercies begin afresh each morning (Lamentations 3:22; NLT).

1. Lord,
I want to follow you,
So may I start afresh today
By turning from my selfish ways,
And taking up my cross.

2. Lord,
I want to follow you,
So may I start afresh today
By spreading patience, joy, and love,
Whilst welcoming each loss.

3. Lord,
I want to follow you,
So may I start afresh today
By thanking you for all you send,
And praying without cease.

4. Lord,
I want to follow you,
So may I start afresh today
By seeing you in everyone,
And living in your peace.

Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past
(Isaiah 43:18; NIV).

 


References

1. Then he said to the crowd, “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).

2. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-3; NRSV).

The Lord gave me what I had, and the Lord has taken it away. Praise the name of the Lord! (Job 1:21; NLT).

Always rejoice (1 Thessalonians 5:16; NIV).

I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake (2 Corinthians 12:10; NLT).

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

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

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

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

Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone (Romans 12:18; NLT).

Start afresh


His mercies begin afresh each morning (Lamentations 3:22; NLT).

1. Lord,
I want to follow you,
So may I start afresh today
By turning from my selfish ways,
And taking up my cross.

2. Lord,
I want to follow you,
So may I start afresh today
By spreading patience, joy, and love,
Whilst welcoming each loss.

3. Lord,
I want to follow you,
So may I start afresh today
By thanking you for all you send
And praying without cease.

4. Lord,
I want to follow you,
So may I start afresh today
By seeing you in everyone,
And living in your peace.

Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past
(Isaiah 43:18; NIV).


References

1. Then he said to the crowd, “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).

2. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-3; NRSV).

The Lord gave me what I had, and the Lord has taken it away. Praise the name of the Lord! (Job 1:21; NLT).

Always rejoice (1 Thessalonians 5:16; NIV).

I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake (2 Corinthians 12:10; NKJV).

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

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

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

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

Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone (Romans 12:18; NLT).