This was my daily reading today and it made me feel so blessed I wanted to share it.
How wonderful to be alive and able to give an offering of praise and thanks to God today. Some might not have the ability to offer more than that but how sweet a sound in God’s ear such praise will be.
I woke up this morning thinking of the words of this wonderful old hymn. Hymns are beautiful and declare precious truths about God. I hope these words from How Great Thou Art bless you this morning. I hadn’t realised but according to information I have read, the words were originally a poem by Swedish Carl Boberg. The title was translated as “O Mighty God”.
It was years later that a missionary in Ukraine heard locals singing the song who translated it into the English version we know today.
I pray today that with all this terrible situation in Ukraine that this song and it’s words will be once again be a mighty declaration over that country of How Great God Is. May these words be heard ringing in Heaven’s courts today,
Oh Lord, my God When I, in awesome wonder Consider all the worlds Thy hands have made I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder Thy power throughout the universe displayed
Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee How great Thou art, how great Thou art Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee How great Thou art, how great Thou art
And when I think that God, His Son not sparing Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in That on the cross, my burden gladly bearing He bled and died to take away my sin
Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee How great Thou art, how great Thou art Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee How great Thou art, how great Thou art
When Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart Then I shall bow, in humble adoration And then proclaim, my God, how great Thou art
Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee How great Thou art, how great Thou art Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee How great Thou art, how great Thou art How great Thou art, how great Thou art
Last week as I was walking to church, I started humming the song “You are my Sunshine, My only Sunshine, you make me happy when skies are gray ” ☀️
It really made me smile because I knew that the Lord had put this song on my heart as a worship song to him. It’s a secular song but I knew the Lord wanted me to sing it to Him.
The only reason I discerned this was from the Lord was because I had been to a prayer conference the day before and one of the teaching sessions was about singing in the Spirit to the Lord. Not just singing in tongues but singing our own songs as the Spirit leads and also using different tunes/songs but with different words.
I started singing the song but I changed some of the words:
You are my sunshine My only sunshine You make me happy When skies are gray Oh Lord I Love you How much I love you Please don’t take your presence away.
Oh Lord I love you I really love you You make me happy When skies are gray You are my sunshine My only sunshine Praise and glory to you today.
I really enjoyed just singing along to a familiar tune but changing the words to praises as the Lord led me. I had such a joy in my heart at this spontaneity and freedom.
What are some of your favourite songs that you really enjoy singing and make you smile. Songs that bring you joy or move you emotionally. How about using those tunes and changing them up to a praise & worship song to the Lord as He leads you.
Today’s testimony I am sharing with you is available on this YouTube link from our church service on Sunday. It is a powerful testimony from our dear brother, Rob Giles. Rob has agreed to me sharing the link to his testimony with you. Rob was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer this last week. I encourage you to listen to Rob share how every step in these difficult circumstances, God has been with him and given him a song. He has woken in the night or early hours to a worship song going over in his mind. He calls them Songs in the Night.
I know that Rob’s testimony will bless you and especially the words of the song that he sings for all of us. He knows that there will be difficult times ahead but that God will be with him through it all. Rob talks about moving forward and chasing down what he calls the Elixir of Life, through worship of God, true fellowship with each other and Jesus who is the living water.
The second line of his song says “my soul thirsts for you in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water” Psalm 63.
Rob’s testimony starts at about 9 minutes into the service so you can fast forward to find it. I know you will be encouraged and blessed by it. It is very powerful and moving.
Morning friends. Today’s prayer post is simply to encourage us to remember who it is that we are praying to – God our Father in heaven. It sounds so obvious but this simple truth can sometimes be overlooked. Focusing our minds on God and who He is gives us great confidence and builds our faith in our prayers.
The translated word “God” of itself does not convey fully all the aspects of God’s character from the original text and the names of God revealed in the Bible help to give us a much fuller understanding of who God is. The God who is on our side.
Imagine for a moment that you needed something urgently today. Who you would ask for help. Who would come to mind. Most of us would probably think of someone we knew could give us what we needed. Someone who would have the resources to help. No good asking someone with empty hands.
We would also need to feel comfortable asking that person for help. Confident that they would want to help us, either because of our relationship with them, or because we know them to be kind and generous. It would be in their nature to help.
When we have an informed understanding of God’s character as revealed in the Bible then we can have confidence in our prayer requests.
We may have the wrong impression of God either because of lack of knowledge, misunderstanding or projecting on to God characteristics which are not His that come from our own life experiences or relationships – good and bad. That will impact our prayer life. It’s important for us to take some time reflecting on whether that could be the case so we can put it right.
Our experiences don’t define who God is -His character as revealed in Scripture does.
We discover in the Bible that God definitely has the resources and ability to help us and that He also longs to do so. We are in relationship with God because of the work of salvation and our belief in His son, Jesus Christ who has redeemed us and brought us into relationship with God. We are God’s Children and He is a loving Father who desires to help us. We do need to understand what is pleasing to God. That way we know that our prayers are in line with God’s will – His purposes and plans.
So let us start our prayers with being determinedly God focused as we consider the different characteristics of God revealed by his names.
Jesus taught his followers that their prayers should start by being focused on who and where God is and acknowledging His glory- He is “Our FATHER – in heaven- and Hallowed be HIS NAME”
Hallowed means to revere, worship, lift up and exalt HIS HOLY NAME. If Jesus said it then for me that is the best example to start my prayers. Giving praise to God by:
1 PROCLAIMING the truth of who God is;
2 ACKNOWLEDGING who God is to us in every aspect of our lives; and
3 CONTEMPLATING an aspect of God more deeply.
As we do, we cannot help but be stirred up in our faith. Our words become statements of faith reinforcing our understanding of God’s Character,His Works, His Wonders, His Glory. We proclaim our belief in God and His promises and His Word. Our eyes and our mind’s focus is on God (not ourselves or circumstances) whose thoughts and ways are so much higher than ours and who can do exceedingly more than we could ever think or imagine.
Names themselves have great significance in the Bible and in the spiritual realm. A name denotes not only character and identity but authority and power as well.
The Hebrew word for name is “onoma” and was used to signify rank or authority, character and reputation. Understanding this will help us to appreciate what it means when we pray in Jesus’ name and the authority and power in that name.
“ELOHIM” – GOD THE CREATOR – Genesis 1:1 – This is the first name attributed to God in the Bible. GOD is revealed as the creator of heaven and earth who has all authority, power, greatness, dominion and glory in the whole of the universe. Elohim is the plural form because Jesus and the Holy Spirit were there at the beginning with God when the world was created.
As we meditate on that awesome truth, then in our prayers we acknowledge and thank God that He alone is the Creator and Sustainer of all things and that He is sovereign God. We acknowledge His glory and power demonstrated in creation.
My prayer for us today and the week ahead: Father God, the bible says that in the beginning you created the heavens and the earth. By your Word light was created and broke into the darkness. Jesus your son is the light of the world. Jesus is the living Word. We acknowledge today that you were before all things. There is none like you. You alone are the God of creation. You created us and all things that live and have breath on this earth. You alone are worthy of all praise and glory. You are seated on the throne in heaven. You are Sovereign and ruler of all things. Please take your rightful place in our lives today. We thank you today that you are mindful of us and that you love us and care for us. Help us today to grow in the knowledge and understanding of who you are as we read your Word and by the revelation of the Holy Spirit at work in us. Show us where we may be in error or have any false belief or understanding about you. Lead us into the Truth. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Do you need some joy in your hearts today my friends? A re-discovering of the joy in knowing the love of Jesus that is down deep in our hearts – a deep, deep, deep joy.
I was reminded this week of the deep, deep, deep down joy of the Lord. Have you experienced and can you remember that deep, deep, joy of when you found Jesus as Lord and Saviour. When you realised that you were forgiven, loved, cleaned up, restored, healed, redeemed and part of God’s family.
There is a praise song about that deep, deep, deep joy found in Jesus. It’s a children’s song but the words are so profound we adults can definitely benefit from the reminder that because of Jesus we have a deep, deep, well of joy inside us that we can tap into. It’s rooted deep in our hearts.
When things get tough and we are going through hardships, trials and all sorts of tests we need to dig deep into our faith. The Joy of the Lord is our strength and how precious it is to know that deep down in the reserves of our heart and soul there is that deep, deep, deep joy just waiting to be re-discovered.
If you need a reminder of that joy today (and you might think this is a bit silly) but I encourage you to have a listen to the words of this children’s praise song again – I hope it will have you smiling, tapping your toes and singing along before you realise it. You might even have a dance around the kitchen!! I dare you. Guaranteed joy x.
I was reminded this week of how easy it can be to neglect our worship times with God especially in the current COVID circumstances. I can get distracted by doing life, work and the busyness of doing and then my times of personal worship to God suffer.
The Lord prompted me through a dream not to neglect the former things but to return to the heart of worship. There is a song about this by Matt Redman with beautiful lyrics which say:
“When the music fades All is stripped away And I simply come Longing just to bring Something that’s of worth That will bless Your heart I’ll bring You more than a song For a song in itself Is not what You have required You search much deeper within Through the way things appear You’re looking into my heart
I’m coming back to the heart of worship And it’s all about You, It’s all about You, Jesus I’m sorry, Lord, for the thing I’ve made it When it’s all about You, It’s all about You, Jesus
King of endless worth No one could express How much You deserve Though I’m weak and poor All I have is Yours Every single breath I’ll bring You more than a song For a song in itself Is not what You have required You search much deeper within Through the way things appear You’re looking into my heart”
Those words really spoke to my heart and as I listened to the song, I realised again how gracious God is when He gently reminds me to check my heart and draws Me back to Him. The source of life and perfect peace.
A glimpse of heaven awaits us in our times of worship. We lift up our eyes to His throne and His glory. Heaven’s seat of might and power. As we worship we see the Lamb of God..His beauty, His power, His glory. Heaven’s darling. We saturate ourselves in His presence through our praise and worship. We get a heavenly perspective of things and clearer revelation to help us be steadfast in faith and overcome things. We ascend those hills of praise and answer His call to come up higher to Him. To ascend the hill of the Lord. Our faith rises up as we gain fresh understanding and revelation of our great God and Jesus. We encounter the refreshing power of His Holy Spirit as we meet with Him.
I encourage myself (and I hope you) to keep the music of heaven and worship alive in our hearts. We exchange the spirit of heaviness for the garment of praise and are filled with the joy of our salvation.
“As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God” Psalm 42:1
I had a dream the other night which was so vivid. In the dream my daughter burst into my bedroom and shouted loudly for me to wake up, wake up..you have overslept. I woke bolt upright in a state of confusion. I couldn’t understand why I had slept through my alarm which I had set the night before as usual.
When I looked, my alarm clock was flashing brightly but the number displayed was 00:00. There was no beeping sound coming from the alarm clock though just the flashing of the bright white numbers. 00:00.
I understand that 00:00 is used in military time to show the midnight hour and so the midnight hour is the hour in the dream that the Lord was calling to my attention.
At midnight Paul and Silas were singing hymns and praising the Lord when the power of God came in a miraculous way for freedom and salvation. Praise God 👏👏 Hallelujah 🔥🔥🙌
“About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose.” Acts 16:25-26
I believe that there is a season in prayer that the Lord is calling His people to in the midnight watch. Let’s the Saints arise and the power of their praises and prayers shake the heavens.
Whilst walking in the park the other day, these words kept coming to me, “Bless the Lord oh my soul, forget not all His benefits, who heals all our diseases”. I started singing the words from the song 10,000 reasons to bless the Lord by Matt Redman which starts with the same words , “Bless the Lord oh my soul” but I also remembered includes the line “May I be singing when the evening comes”.
I pray for those who are going through very difficult times at the moment that God will strengthen you by His grace. His grace is sufficient for us and His mercies are new every morning. Keep going, hold on, keep your eyes lifted to Him. He is sovereign and on the Throne. He loves us with an everlasting love. Remember His faithfulness and promise to be with us at all times and in all circumstances. I encourage you not to give up your confidence in Him but hold on so that when the evening comes you will be able to say “Bless the Lord Oh my soul”.
Psalm 103 is a beautiful and uplifting Psalm. I have posted it below and hope as you read it today that you are blessed, edified and inspired by Gods Word.
Bless the Lord, O my soul; And all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, Who satisfies your mouth with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
The Lord executes righteousness And justice for all who are oppressed. He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the children of Israel. The Lord is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy. He will not always strive with us, Nor will He keep His anger forever. He has not dealt with us according to our sins, Nor punished us according to our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him; As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us.
As a father pities his children, So the Lord pities those who fear Him. For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust. As for man, his days are like grass; As a flower of the field, so he flourishes. For the wind passes over it, and it is gone, And its place remembers it no more. But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting On those who fear Him, And His righteousness to children’s children, To such as keep His covenant, And to those who remember His commandments to do them.
The Lord has established His throne in heaven, And His kingdom rules over all. Bless the Lord, you His angels, Who excel in strength, who do His word, Heeding the voice of His word. Bless the Lord, all you His hosts, You ministers of His, who do His pleasure.
Bless the Lord, all His works, In all places of His dominion. Bless the Lord , O my soul! Psalm 103:1-22
I have added the link to Matt Redman’s song 10,000 reasons below.
Some weeks ago just after my posting on Praise 24/7, the Lord encouraged me and a few friends to go and give Him praise on the High Hills. Observing of course social distancing 😀
We went to a local beauty spot -Waseley Hills and from the top of the hills there are the most incredible 360 views all around. You can see for miles.
We had an incredible time praising and worshipping God. There was a tangible presence of the Holy Spirit as we sang about how awesome our God is and how worthy our God is to receive all honour and Glory. He alone is worthy of all the glory.
The Holy Spirit inspired us with bible readings and songs to sing. We sang, prayed and read aloud. It was so freeing and joyful especially after being cooped up for so long in isolation. There is something so special about being outside in creation, involved in the beauty of it and praising the Creator with fellow believers.
The Lord gave us 3 words to declare from those High Hills which we did. I also recorded them. I have transcribed them and will post on here shortly but having looked back at some earlier words this year I am struck by their similarity to previous posts. The key messages were for us as the people of God to Awaken & Rise up and be Christ’s light shining in the darkness. There is a clear sense that we are to be about Gods work and trust in Him. To be alert and watchful not sleeping. To be doers of the Word not just hearers.
If you have the opportunity then I encourage you to go do something similar. Go somewhere outside where there is lots of space and declare aloud how great our God is. We are lacking corporate praise whilst our fellowships are not able to meet and singing aloud is not possible with COVID 19. Let’s not be silent but let’s get creative. Satan hates our praises. Let’s not let him rob our praise. Praising God changes the spiritual atmosphere! It’s a catalyst for so much. It puts things into perspective and the focus on our great God. We look up and not down at our circumstances. It changes us.