VIDEO The USAF Band 2014 Christmas Flash Mob

Dec 3, 2014

The USAF Band Christmas Flash Mob 2014 at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center

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Another One for Jesus!

But did He not make them one, having a remnant of the Spirit? And why one? He seeks godly offspring. Malachi 2:15

Raymond Riggs grew up in the age of large families, and every year or so during his childhood he’d be sent to neighbors for a couple of days while his mother had another baby. One year his mom’s labor pains came too quickly, and Raymond heard everything through the thin walls of the family’s tenant house. “As a boy who had never experienced anything like this, I was all ears,” he recalled. “I heard Mrs. Clark give instructions to my mother. Finally, after severe labor pains, I heard the cry of a newborn baby. I heard my mother shout, and then she said, ‘Thank the Lord, Ernest. Here’s another one for Jesus!’”1

Sure enough, Raymond and his siblings all grew up to serve the Lord.

No home is perfect, and we all struggle with faults and failures under the roof. But when Christ comes into a home, He helps us raise godly offspring. The joys of being raised in a Christian household cannot be overstated. Love thrives when Christ is the center of the home, and we long for every child to be “another one for Jesus.”

A Pattern for Prayer

Matthew 6:7-15

In Matthew 6:7, Jesus cautioned against meaningless repetition when talking to the Father. Just two verses later, He left a pattern to help us pray. However, in using this passage, which is known as the Lord’s Prayer, we’re often guilty of the very thing Jesus warned against: Instead of thoughtfully praying each line, we run through the words mindlessly. But if we take time to carefully examine Christ’s words, we’ll find the pattern that can transform our prayer life.

Adoration of the Father
(Matt. 6:9). God the Father is the focus of all our prayers. We should never forget what a privilege it is to bend our knees on earth and reach almighty God in heaven.

Submission to His Will
(Matt. 6:10). Prayer should reflect a desire to align ourselves with God’s goals and purposes, not to get Him to follow our plans.

Petition God for our needs
(Matt. 6:11). We are dependent upon the Lord, and He wants us to come to Him with our requests.

Confession of sins
(Matt. 6:12). When we repent and forgive others, we maintain fellowship with God. But if we hold grudges, that fellowship is broken. God loves to answer our prayers when the lines of communication are not disrupted.

Deliverance from evil (Matt. 6:13). Our enemy is too strong for us, but Christ has already won the victory over him.

Jesus ended the prayer where He began—with praise to the Father for His kingdom, power, and glory (Matt. 6:13). Next time you say this prayer, concentrate on each verse. Then, following this pattern will result in a more dynamic and effective prayer life because it will be God-centered.

The Name of David

“Now these be the last words of David. David the son of Jesse said, and the man who was raised up on high, the anointed of the God of Jacob, and the sweet psalmist of Israel, said, The Spirit of the LORD spake by me, and his word was in my tongue.” (2 Samuel 23:1-2)

The name of David is uniquely important in Scripture. Except for the name of Jesus Christ Himself (of whom David is a remarkable type), no other name (not even Abraham or Moses or Paul) occurs nearly so often in the Bible. In the New Testament—again, other than Jesus Christ—David’s name is both the first mentioned (Matthew 1:1) and the last mentioned (Revelation 22:16).

As the “sweet psalmist of Israel,” David was largely responsible for this longest book in the Bible. As we see in our text, his claim to divine inspiration in the writing of his psalms is perhaps the most meaningful and clear-cut statement on this subject by any of the biblical authors. It was both “God’s Spirit” and “me” who spoke, giving “his word” through “my tongue,” said David in his last words shortly before he died.

David was not a perfect man. We remember his grievous sin, not only against Uriah the Hittite, but even more against the Lord (2 Samuel 12:9-14), thus giving “great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme.”

He had to suffer greatly because of this, but his repentance was genuine, and he was graciously restored by God to fellowship and service. The Lord’s own testimony concerning him was this: “I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfill all my will” (Acts 13:22).

It is little wonder that so many loving parents over the many centuries—both Jews and Gentiles—have named their own sons David, for the very name means “beloved.” HMM

Delighted Wonder

Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the LORD: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth. —Hosea 6:3

God always acts like Himself, wherever He may be and whatever He may be doing; in Him there is neither variableness nor shadow of turning. Yet His infinitude places Him so far above our knowing that a lifetime spent in cultivating the knowledge of Him leaves as much yet to learn as if we had never begun….

So imperfectly do we know Him that it may be said that one invariable concomitant of a true encounter with God is delighted wonder. No matter how high our expectation may be, when God finally moves into the field of our spiritual awareness we are sure to be astonished by His power to overwhelm the mind and fascinate the soul. He is always more wonderful than we anticipate, and more blessed and marvelous than we had imagined He could be.

Great God of wonder, help me to know You well enough to be awed by that knowledge. Help me to have the type of encounter with You today that would leave me in speechless wonder. Amen.

Glory to God Rest On You

The spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you. (1 Peter 4:14)

When the Holy Spirit comes among us with His anointing, we become a worshiping people! Now, that does not mean that all Christians everywhere must all worship alike—but that under the guidance of the Holy Spirit believers everywhere are united in their praises to God.

When Jesus came into Jerusalem presenting Himself as Messiah there was a great multitude and there was a great noise. Very often our worship is audible, but I do not believe it is necessarily true that we are worshiping God when we are making a lot of racket. But I think there is a word for those who are cultured, quiet, self-possessed, poised and sophisticated. If they are embarrassed in church when some happy Christian says, “Amen!” they may actually be in need of some spiritual enlightenment.

If some believer’s “Glory to God!” really bothers you, it may be because you do not know the kind of spiritual blessing and delight the Holy Spirit is waiting to provide among God’s worshiping saints. I can only speak for myself, but I want to be among those who worship!

God says to you, “Fear not, I am thy shield”

God says to you, “Fear not, I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.” Believer, grasp the divine word with a personal, appropriating faith. Think that you hear Jesus say, “I have prayed for thee that thy faith fail not.” Think you see him walking on the waters of thy trouble, for he is there, and he is saying, “Fear not, it is I; be not afraid.” Oh, those sweet words of Christ! May the Holy Ghost make you feel them as spoken to you; forget the others for a while—accept the voice of Jesus as addressed to you, and say, “Jesus whispers consolation; I cannot refuse it; I will sit under his shadow with great delight.”