VIDEO Blessings From Above

Jun 24, 2013

A Wedding Prayer song. Words, Music, and Video by Esther Mui. Performed by Grace Soon

Lyrics:

Verse 1:
In this place, Lord, our praises we bring
Our hearts are filled with joy and adoration
We thank You for the hearts You have joined
We thank You for the lives You have united as one
As they start their lives together
As they put their hands in Your hand

Chorus:
We pray for blessings from above to fill their lives
We pray love of the Father to flow through their hearts
We pray for joy of the Spirit, peace of the Son
And in Your presence each day they’ll find
The strength to see them through

Verse 2:
In this place, Lord, our worship we bring
To You, our Lord and King, and the Rock of our salvation
To You and only You we will sing we bring
For You alone are worthy of the praises we bring
You’re the One who made this union
You’re the source of love eternal

© 1991 Esther Mui. All rights reserved.

The Word Among Us

Reading Bible
Your testimonies also are my delight and my counselors. —Psalm 119:24

The Word of God comes to us in many forms. Bible-centered preaching, Scripture reading, songs, study groups, and devotional articles bring to us the truths of God from Scripture. But we can’t overlook personal reading and studying either.

My heart has recently been touched by a careful, paragraph-by-paragraph study of Deuteronomy alongside the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5–7. Both passages contain codes of belief: The Ten Commandments (Deut. 5:6-21) and the Beatitudes (Matt. 5:3-12). Deuteronomy shows us the old covenant—the law God wanted His people to follow. In Matthew, Jesus shows us how He has come to fulfill that law and establish the principles of the new covenant, which frees us from the burden of the law.

The Holy Spirit comes alongside the Word of God to teach, empower, instruct, convict, and purify us. The result is understanding, repentance, renewal, and growth in Jesus. Theologian Philip Jacob Spener wrote: “The more at home the Word of God is among us, the more we will bring about faith and its fruits.” Let’s pray with the psalmist: “Open my eyes, that I may see wondrous things from Your law” so that we might live it out in our lives (Ps. 119:18). By David C. Egner

Psalm 119 is a celebration of God’s law, broken down into 22 sections that follow the letters of the Hebrew alphabet. When we take a look at the individual sections, we see that the psalmist personally looks to God’s law as a source of life and guidance. In today’s passage, the psalmist celebrates God’s grace as he acknowledges that it is only through Him that he can keep His Word (v.17).

“Heavenly Father, we bow in Your presence. Let Your
Word be our rule and guide, Your Spirit our teacher,
and Your greater glory be our supreme concern,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.” —John R. W. Stott

When the Word of God is within us, it flows out from our life.

Developing a Tender Heart

Ezekiel 36:25-28

The Lord wants to give each of us a “heart of flesh” so that we will be pliable and responsive to Him. When touched by the finger of God, a tender heart yields to the pressure and assumes the form He desires, much like a lump of clay that allows the potter to determine the shape of the vessel.

To aid in this process, God has sent the Holy Spirit to indwell each believer and awaken responsiveness in him or her. By yielding to the Spirit’s promptings with ready obedience, the heart becomes increasingly tender and sensitive to His leading. The Lord is able to impart greater understanding of His Word to a soft heart because it has faithfully accepted and obeyed previous teachings.

Any resistance to God will result in hardening. But those who are accustomed to intimacy with Christ—which is the result of submission to Him—will be quick to deal with sin and return to the place of obedience and blessing.

People with tender hearts stay closely connected to the body of Christ, seeking to build up and encourage others in their walk of faith. Such individuals are not only receptive to what God wants to tell them; they are also teachable, in that they are willing to listen and are open to being corrected by others.

This week when you read your Bible and pray, let your heart be soft toward the words of God. As He pokes His finger into each hard area, listen to His instructions, and rely on the Spirit’s power to help you yield and obey. Let Him shape you into a beautiful and useful vessel.

Lifelong Love

“Live joyfully with the wife whom thou lovest all the days of the life of thy vanity, which he hath given thee under the sun, all the days of thy vanity: for that is thy portion in this life, and in thy labour which thou takest under the sun.” (Ecclesiastes 9:9)

The above wise advice was written by King Solomon in his later years, after many years of searching for happiness through intellectualism, worldly pleasures, riches, and power, and finding that all of it was mere “vanity and vexation of spirit” (Ecclesiastes 1:14).

Solomon had 700 wives, all of whom were “princesses” and thus at least partially for purposes of prestige and politics, but various references in his Book of Proverbs suggest that these were more a problem than a help. It is interesting that he had only one son, Rehoboam, plus two daughters, as far as the record goes.

That one son was born a year before he became king, while he was still very young, and Naamah (Rehoboam’s mother) was thus very likely the only wife he really loved (compare 1 Kings 11:42; 14:21), as described so beautifully in his Song of Solomon, which Solomon himself called his “Song of Songs.”

So it seems poignant and significant that, near the end of his life, Solomon is counseling young men to cultivate that special love “with the wife whom thou lovest all the days of the life of thy vanity.” (Note also Proverbs 5:18-19). The Bible very seldom refers to romantic love or marital love (nearly always biblical love is “agape” love), so this rare reference to romantic love (as between a young bride and bridegroom) is especially noteworthy. The admonition to “live joyfully” is from a word usually translated “alive,” so his advice was to keep that young marital love alive and fresh all through life! HMM

Wild-Eyed Fanatics

Quench not the Spirit .Despise not prophesyings. Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. —1 Thessalonians 5:19-21

This is a crude illustration, but let me tell you what we did after planting a field of corn when I was a young fellow in Pennsylvania. To save the field of corn from the crows, we would shoot an old crow and hang him by his heels in the middle of the field. This was supposed to scare off all of the crows for miles around. The crows would hold a conference and say, “Look, there is a field of corn but don’t go near it. I saw a dead crow over there!”

That’s the kind of conference that Satan calls, and that is exactly what he has done. He has taken some fanatical, weird, wild-eyed Christians who do things that they shouldn’t, and he has stationed them in the middle of God’s cornfield, and warns, “Now, don’t you go near that doctrine about the Holy Spirit because if you do, you will act just like these wild-eyed fanatics.”

Keep us, Lord, from shying away from such valuable truth and experience as the ministry of the Holy Spirit because of the excesses of a few fanatics. We lose too much, and we can’t afford the loss. Amen.

Divine Love: Necessity for the Church on Earth

To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne… He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches. Revelation 3:21, 22

The kind of Christianity that relies upon the influence of its own human and earthly power makes God sick, for the church of Jesus Christ is a heavenly institution.

For myself, if I could not have the divine power of God, I would walk out and quit the whole religious business. The church that wants God’s power will have something to offer besides social clubs, knitting societies and all of the other side issues.

If any church is to be a church of Christ, the living, organic member of that redeemed Body of which Christ is the Head, then its teachers and its members must strive earnestly and sacrificially with constant prayer to do a number of things.

We must strive to make our beliefs and practices New Testament in their content. We must teach and believe New Testament truths, with nothing dragged in from the outside.

We must keep our little field of God’s planting healthy, and there is only one way to do that: keep true to the Word of God! We must constantly go back to the grass roots and get the Word into the church.

We must live to gear ourselves into things eternal and to live the life of heaven here upon the earth, empowered by the Spirit of God with that same power that came on the earliest believers. We must put loyalty to Christ first at any cost. Anything less than that really is not a Christian church!

Our Highest Happiness

If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them. JOHN 13:17

Let me call it to your attention that the happiness of all moral creatures lies in the giving of obedience to God, the Creator.

The psalmist cries out in Psalm 103:20: “Bless the Lord, ye his angels, that excel in strength, that do his commandments, hearkening unto the voice of his word.”

The angels in heaven find their complete freedom and highest happiness in obeying the commandments of God. They do not find it a tyranny—they find it a delight!

Here is something that we should know and realize: Heaven is a place of surrender to the whole will of God, and it is heaven because it is such a place.

I thank God that heaven is the world of God’s obedient children. Whatever else we may say of its pearly gates, golden streets and jasper walls, heaven is heaven because children of the Most High God find they are in their normal sphere as obedient moral beings.

Dear Lord, thank You for Your patience with me as I learn to obey You more fully in my daily walk with You.