Standing in this Place

Standing in this place

I hear you Lord

Above the sound of song

You touch my heart

All around continues

You move in me

Standing in this place

I hear You Lord

I hear You Lord

 

All praise to You Lord

All worship to You

Your name above all names

In all the earth

You reign, Lord,

You reign above all

You reign over me, over me

 

In the stillness of my heart

I feel You there

In the quiet of my mind

I hear You Lord

Singing praise to You

For all You’ve done

Standing in this place

I hear You Lord (echo)

I hear You Lord

We Have One Messiah

We have one Messiah, His name is Jesus,

He sits with the Father in heaven,

From time begun, our King was present,

Became one of us, to save us,

Humble servant, majestic Lord,

We bow down to worship only You.

 

We have one God, we praise Him now,

Higher than anything, He is Lord,

Grace and mercy flow through Him

To us, sinners below, unworthy

Forgiveness and assurance,

We are eternally thankful to You.

Trial

The next step is video, another scary step but one I will take when the time comes. For now this is scary enough, getting used to hearing my own voice recorded, warts and all. This recording is from the service last night in Millstreet. There are things I would do differently in hindsight but don’t we love that hindsight chip. And there was one part of the message I couldn’t deliver because there were so many visitors, I will get it in sometime there, because it is a very special congregation who have taken me into their hearts. They love because first He loved them. Praise the Lord for Millstreet Methodist. Praise the Lord for their new vision of visibility. I thank the Lord that I took that scary step one day eighteen months ago and arrived into their congregation for a trial service that didn’t happen for someone else. They are a blessed bunch of people.

The first half of the sermon is not recorded and sadly it was Kirby’s last outing, she will be made into soup this week by the beautiful Eileen. Clare will be struggling with plantain and okra. I like to challenge people!

 

Sermon Twelve the ways of obtaining God’s blessing

john                        audio clip

 

We have a God of abundance, he is not skimpy in giving blessings to us. He is generous and abundant.

Now for me blessings are the tools given by God in order that I can be steadfast in the storm with his help and guidance. Wesley goes at it from a different angle.

He begins with the rituals of the church, specifically the sacrament of Holy Communion. He begins at the beginning of Christianity, when believers lived together with a common purse. He often comes back to this model of living and I concur with him that it is the ideal. When streetpastors go out on a Saturday night there is a core group praying for them and praying for the people they meet. When a remnant, or core group gets together in fellowship, great things can be done for his glory. The people in the New Testament, the early church were blessed and they blessed others and because they blessed other they were blessed more and the more they reached out to other.

But people like hierarchy, they like power, human power and the church became a monstrous edifice mirroring the world, it was not set aside and blessed. It was grunt work, a struggle, weighed down by the centuries of ritual. The reformation blew new life into old Christians. It shook up the world first in Europe and then spread. It threw away the pomp and ceremony and became simple again, referring back to the early church. Different factions grew up into different denominations of which Methodism is one.

There are things done in a Methodist church that are not done elsewhere and likewise there are things of other churches not done in the Methodist church. BUT…

God’s Blessings for us Has Always Come Through Faith in Christ

It is not about bricks and mortar church, it is about the body of Christ church. People. So denominations don’t mean squat.

The church now and in the past has mistaken the means for the end. Mistaking outward performance of ritual rather than seeking the truth in the renewal of our lives in the image of Christ.

It is all about Jesus.                      Not you.                       Not me.

Whatever rituals we go through from ceremonial footwashing, to raising our hands when we sing. They don’t mean anything if it is a habit alone, or ritual, or because everyone else is doing it, we have to be free in the Spirit to learn the way God wants us to worship him, it may be the same way as the person next to us but it might be different. My balance is impaired, I cannot clap in time to music, watching me dance is painful, a mere shuffle at the edge of a dance floor and then in my kitchen as I scrub my floor my toes are tapping in time to imagined music in my head, I stop to clap, I stand to jump up and down, I fall on my knees and cry out to the Lord, thanking him for immeasurable blessings in my life, I count some but there are too many to mention.

Reading the bible and understanding how those ancient words can apply to our lives – that is a gift of God’s grace

Praying, communicating with the Living God – that is a gift of the grace of God

Baptism by the Holy Spirit – that is a gift of God’s grace

Holy Communion – that is a gift of the grace of God

If we are ritualistic or habit forming in our worship then we are not free to change, to move as the Spirit wills us.

We place our trust in the Lord not in the ceremonies. We take part in the ceremonies to remember what Christ has done for us, that it is his blood that was shed to free us from the slavery of sin.

In Christian circles Methodists are seen as people who do. We seem to be seeking salvation through good works, but the outside does not see what motivates us. We do not do good works to outweigh our sin on the eternal scales of justice.

We do good works as a response to the change that has taken place in our lives, we give, we feed, we visit, we live simple lives as a response to the immeasurable love of God.

A person who has been convicted by the Holy Spirit so they become an unwilling sinner sitting under the law, suddenly needs to find a church, suddenly needs to begin studying the bible, suddenly begins to hear more and seek more and read more and pray more until they come to the realisation, possibly through the taking part in the Lord’s supper, they are using all the means of grace, until they fall on the ground before the Lord and give their lives to the Lord, they are then living in a state of grace.

Let our song forever be of the lovingkindness of the Lord

R.E.S.P.E.C.T. fully Submitted

Deep honour and bright glory to the King of All Time-One God, Immortal, Invisible, ever and always. Oh, yes! 1 Tim 1:17 (The Message)

Honour was always a tough one for me, honour means respect and I was sadly lacking respect for most things from a very early age. The first teacher that said “get down from there Susan, do you climb on your furniture at home” got a surprise when I said “yes”. Then I got a clip round the lughole for being cheeky. 

It’s been, therefore a struggle to get to the point where I could respect stuff, respect people, respect me and most of all how because of all this I was falling short honouring God.

The synonyms of honour are: 


account, adoration, adulation, aggrandizement, apotheosis, approbation, 

attention, canonization,celebrationconfidence, consideration, credit,deference, 

deification, dignity, distinction, elevation, esteem, exaltationfaith, fame, fealty, 

glorification, glorygreatness, high standing, homage, immortalization, laud

laurel, lionization,notice, obeisance, popularity, praise, prestige,rank,

 recognition, renown, reputation, repute, reverence, tribute, trust

veneration, worship,wreath

When I look at these certain words stick out for me in relation to God, we adore and exalt him, we praise and worship him, we celebrate his victory over death, we put our trust in him, we have faith in him, and we have confidence in our glorious great God.

So in my journey I got the honour aspect of worshiping God in all the different forms we tend to do in churches. THat didn’t help on a personal level, of being in relationship with him. I returned to scripture and discovered among other things there’s a huge difference between worthless and unworthy.

It was in my quest for trying to get my head around this that I realised I had skipped being a Chrisitan 101, the basics, and had jumped right in where people expected me to be. Wow, what an eye opener and I suspect I’m not the only one around Christian circles who thought one thing about their faith only to discover they too were in the lane at bowling with bumpers.

So how do you move from wearing stabilisers to cycling on your own – there an awful lot of bruising on the way. With each bump and bruise a rough edge is smoothed. The results are palpable, unmistakable, unequivocal. And there’s no turning back, not because you can’t but because you just cannot imagine wanting to.

It’s a whole new way of life. A few years back someone said to me that new Christians wear their new found status on their sleeve, that they talk about it all the time. They said it in a disgruntled way, as if this was not a good thing. Thinking about it now, I’d wear it on both arms and wherever else God wanted it because I can’t stop, and the barriers that seemed to be there when talking to non Christians aren’t there anymore. I want to jump up and down and shout and sing, honouring God all the day, I also want the times of stillness when hearing my own heart beat I spend time with him.

There are different ways of honouring God, loud noisy ways and quiet silent ways and a whole gamut of ways in between – including standing on the furniture if it’s done in his glory, to praise his name.