No better gift

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🔴

1. There is no better gift, Lord,
Than the faith you give each day.

2. There is no sweeter pleasure
Than to trust you, praise, and pray.

3. There is no higher joy, Lord,
Than to serve as you ordain.

4. There is no greater honour
Than to share your grief and pain.

5. There is no higher path, Lord,
Than to live as one, with you.

6. There is no finer witness
Than to serve in all we do.

7. There is no dearer hope, Lord,
Than to long for your embrace.

8. There is no deeper rapture
Than to see you face to face.

🔴


References

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

2. He is my God, and I trust him (Psalm 91:2; NLY).

This is my God, and I will praise him (Exodus 15:2; NLT).

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

3. Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself’. The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments” (Matthew 22:37-40; NLT).

O people, the Lord has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God (Micah 6:8;’ NLT).

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

5. God has united you with Christ Jesus (1 Corinthians 1:30; NLT).

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

7. As the deer longs for streams of water, so I long for you, O God. I thirst for God, the living God. When can I go and stand before him? (Psalm 42:1-2; NLT).

I long, yes, I faint with longing to enter the courts of the Lord (Psalm 84:2; NLT).

So he returned to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him (Luke 15:20; NLT).

8. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known (1 Corinthians 13:12; NIV).

There is no path

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✝️

1. There is no path like yours, Lord,
And no better way to turn.

2. There is no life like yours, Lord,
And no finer truth to learn.

3. There is no light like yours, Lord,
And no deeper joy to share.

4. There is no grief like yours, Lord,
And no greater cross to bear.

5. There is no peace like yours, Lord,
And no sweeter voice to hear.

6. There is no love like yours, Lord,
And no other god to fear.

✝️


References

1. Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it” (Isaiah 30:21; NIV).

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

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

I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete (John 15:11; NIV).

4. He told them, “My soul is crushed with grief to the point of death” Mark 14:34; NLT).

Whoever does not bear his cross and come after me cannot be my disciple (Luke 14:27; NKJV).

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

Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you (John 14:27; NKJV).

After the fire [came] a still small voice (1 Kings 19:12; KJV).

6. God is love (1 John 4:16; NLT).

There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends (John 15:13; NLT).

I am the Lord your God, and there is no other (Joel 2:27; NKJV).

You must fear the Lord your God and worship him and cling to him (Deuteronomy 10:20; NLT).

Everything (with thanks to R.O.)

Image: Hans Braxmeier, Pixabay


There is […] one God and Father,
who is over all and in all and living through all
(Ephesians 4:5-6; NLT).

1. Everything is fashioned
Through God’s Word,

2. So everything is shining
With his light.

3. Everything is dancing
In his fire,

4. For everything is sharing
In his life.

5. Everything is broadcasting
His peace,

6. For everything is given
From above.

7. Everything is brimming
With God’s truth,

8. For everything embodies
His great love.

 


References

1. The heavens were made by the word of the Lord (Psalm 33:6; CSB).

There is only one Lord, Jesus Christ, though whom God made everything (1 Corinthians 8:6; NLT).

2. God is light (1 John 1:5; NIV).

The Lord will display his glory, the splendour of our God (Isaiah 35:2; NLT).

3. God is a consuming fire (Deuteronomy 4:24; NIV). 

Though the bush was engulfed in flames, it didn’t burn up (Exodus 3:2; NLT).

I see four men, unbound, walking around in the fire unharmed! (Daniel 3:25; NLT).

4,8. There is […] one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all (Ephesians 4:5-6; NLT).

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

God in all his fullness was pleased to live in Christ, and through him God reconciled everything to himself. He made peace with everything in heaven and earth by means of Christ’s blood on the cross (Colossians 1:20; NLT).

The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge (Psalm 19:1-2; NIV).

6. All things come from you (1 Corinthians 29:14; NLT).

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

The meadows are clothed with flocks of sheep, and the valleys are carpeted with grain. They all shout and sing for joy! (Psalm 65:13; NLT).

8. God is love (1 John 4:16; NIV).

Your way

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Take my yoke upon you and learn from me,
for I am gentle and humble in heart
(Matthew 11:9; NLT).

1. Please guide me
On your gentle way,
In all I think, and say, and do.
Then I will gladly serve all those
Whose lives I touch, Lord,
Just like you,

2. Please lead me
On your humble way,
And let me share your heart and mind.
Then I will gladly love all those
I meet, Lord,
And all humankind.

3. Please keep me
On your narrow way,
Although its comforts may be few.
Then I will gladly be the slave
Of everyone, Lord,
Just like you.

 


References

1. Be gentle to all (2 Timothy 2:24; NKJV).

We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5; NIV).

I will watch what I do and not sin in what I say (Psalm 39:1; NLT).

Do everything with love (1 Corinthians 16:14; 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).

Even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others (Mark 10:45; NLT).

2. Strive to be humble (Zephaniah 2:3; NET).

Look, your king is coming to you. He is righteous and victorious, yet he is humble (Zechariah 9:9; NLT).

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

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).

May the Lord make your love for one another and for all people grow and overflow (1 Thessalonians 3:12; NLT).

3. The gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life (Matthew 7:14; NASB).

Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head (Luke 9:58; NKJV).

Whoever wants to be first among you must be the slave of everyone else (Mark 10:44; NLT).

Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross (Philippians 2:6-8; NLT).

Open our eyes

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

Lord,

1. Open our eyes,
So we see your face
In all we greet.

2. Open our minds,
So we know your pain
In those we meet.

3. Open our hearts,
So we share your love
With all mankind.

4. Open our souls,
So we cease, at last, Lord,
To be blind.

 

Image: Andi Graf, Pixabay


References

1. “Lord,” they said to him, “open our eyes” (Matthew 20:33; CSB).

Let me see your face (Song of Songs 2:14; NLT).

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

There is one Lord […] who is over all and in all and living through all (Ephesians 4:5-6; NLT).

2. Then he opened their minds (Luke 24:45; NLT).

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

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

3. The Lord opened her heart (Acts 16:14; NLT).

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

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

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

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

4. I will open the windows of heaven for you (Malachi 3:10; NLT).

He restored sight to many who were blind (Luke 7:21; NLT).

Together

Image: Jesus365.church, Yandex


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

1. I love you, Christ Jesus:
Let’s walk here together,
Linking our hands, Lord, as one.

2. I love you, Christ Jesus:
Let’s talk here together,
Yoking our minds, Lord, as one.

3. I love you, Christ Jesus:
Let’s pray here together,
Binding our hearts, Lord, as one.

4. I love you, Christ Jesus:
Let’s stay here together,
Bonding our souls, Lord, as one.

5. I love you, Christ Jesus:
Let’s cry here together,
Sharing our pain, Lord, as one.

6. I love you, Christ Jesus,
Let’s die here together,
Joining our Father, as one.

I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one – as you are in me, Father, and I am in you […] I have given them the glory you gave me, so they may be one as we are one. I am in them and you are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me (John 17:21-3; NLT).


References

1. I love you, Lord (Psalm 18:1; NLT).

The Lord holds them by the hand (Psalm 37:24; NLT).

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

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

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

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

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

The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

My first thought

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1. May you be my first thought
When I wake up, Lord.
May you be my last thought
Before I sleep.

2. May I talk every problem through
With you, Lord:
My sins and fears;
The hurts that make me weep.

3. May I share all that happens here
With you, Lord,
Including all I feel, think, say,
And do.

4. May I spend all my time, Lord,
In your presence,
Until you live in me,
And I in you.

Image: Giani Pralea, Pixabay


References

1. Evening and morning and at noon I will pray, and cry aloud, and he shall hear my voice (Psalm 55:17; NKJV).

On my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night (Psalm 63:6; NIV).

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

3. Pray about everything (Philippians 4:6; NLT).

4. I walk in the Lord’s presence as I live here on earth (Psalm 116:9; NLT).

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

The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

Contemplation: a different approach

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Introduction

Do you find contemplation difficult, or even impossible? Does your mind constantly slip away from observing the thoughts, emotions and physical sensations bubbling up within you, becoming caught up with them, instead? If so, you might like to try a different approach.

A fresh approach

1. Sit, lie, or stand comfortably, or walk, if you feel restless.

2. Ask God to help you with everything you are going to share with him.

3. Let your breathing be however it is. If you are still, you can close your eyes if you wish.

4. Notice the thoughts, emotions, and physical sensations arising within you, and share them honestly with God. You can do this silently, or aloud, whatever suits you best. Tell him anything you want to, even if you think you shouldn’t feel, or think, that way.

5. Ask God to help you with each issue you tell him about, listening for his still, small voice in response. It doesn’t matter if you move on to a new concern before you have finished talking to him about something else. It doesn’t matter if you fall asleep. You are always in God’s arms, like a little child, and he already knows everything you are experiencing and sharing with him. This kind of contemplation is about being yourself, and being honest with God.

6. Do this for whatever amount of time you wish, long or short; again, it doesn’t matter. Thank God for listening, understanding, caring, and helping you. Then continue with your day.

Conclusion

With practice, you may find that you can continue sharing your thoughts, emotions, and physical sensations with God whilst you are doing simple tasks. He lives within you, so you can commune with him in your heart whenever, and wherever, you want.

In time, always aware of his presence, you will unhesitatingly share everything with him, and this is a vital part of what it means to love both God and yourself.

Image: Anja, Pixabay


References

Introduction

As I stood there is silence – not even speaking of good things – the turmoil within me grew worse. The more I thought about it, the hotter I got, igniting a fire of words (Psalm 39:2-3; NLT).

A fresh approach

1. Be still in the presence of the Lord (Psalm 37:7; NLT).

I cannot be still (Jeremiah 4:19; NLT).

2. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer (Psalm 19:14; NLT).

3. The life of every living thing is in his hand, and the breath of every human being (Job 12:10; NLT).

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

Lord, you are searching for honesty (Proverbs 11:5; NLT).

Pray about everything (Philippians 4:6; NLT).

5. He will be gracious if you ask for help (Isaiah 30:19; NLT).

Tell God what you need (Philippians 4:6; NLT).

Listen to his voice (Deuteronomy 13:4; NLT).

The eternal God is your refuge, and his everlasting arms are under you (Deuteronomy 33:27; NLT).

He knows the secrets of every heart (psalm 44:21; NLT).

6. Lord, you are so good, so ready to forgive, so full of unfailing love for all who ask for your help (Psalm 86:5; NLT).

Conclusion

I know the Lord is always with me (Psalm 16:8; NLT).

There is […] one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all (Ephesians 4:4,6; NLT).

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

Commune with your own heart (Psalm 77:6; KJV).

Pray constantly (1 Thessalonians 5:17; CSB).

Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength (Mark 12:29; NLT).

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

The love of Christ


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My old self has been crucified with Christ.
It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me
(Galatians 2:20; NLT).

1. The love of Christ
Shines in my hands.

2. He walks with me
To light the way.

3. The breath of Christ
Sustains my life.

4. He gives me hope
And strength each day.

5. The blood of Christ
Beats in my heart.

6. He touches me
To make me whole.

7. The peace of Christ
Calms all my fears:

8. He makes his home
Within my soul.

 


References

1. He had loved his disciples during his ministry on earth, and now he loved them to the very end (John 13:1; NLT).

2. 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. He breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit” (John 20:22; NLT).

4. May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal comfort and a wonderful hope, comfort and strengthen you in every good thing you do and say (2 Thessalonians 2:16-17; NLT).

5. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins (Matthew 26:28; NIV).

6. When Jesus touched her hand, the fever left her (Matthew 8:15; NLT).

7. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you (John 14:27; NKJV).

He will calm all your fears (Zephaniah 3:17; NLT).

8. 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).

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

My spirit rises up


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1. My spirit rises up, Lord God,
To join with yours, in prayer.

2. I share my pain and fear with you,
Each fault, each sin, each care,

3. United with you, Father God,
Your Spirit, and your Son,

4. With all the living, and the dead,
For in you, all are one.

 


References

1. Come, let us join ourselves to the Lord (Jeremiah 50:5; ESV).

Pray constantly (1 Thessalonians 5:17; CSB).

2. Pray about everything (Philippians 4:6; NLT).

You desire honesty from the womb (Psalm 51:6; NLT).

Pour out your heart to him, for God is our refuge (Psalm 62:8; NLT).

3. I have given them the glory you gave me, so they may be one as we are one (John 17:22; NLT).

4. He is God of the living, not the dead, for they are all alive to him (Luke 20:38; NLT).

There is […] one God and Father, who is over all and in all and living through all (Ephesians 4:5-6; NLT).

I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one – as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. And may they be in us (John 17:21; NLT).