Tag Archives: Peace

The Life-Boat Of Free Grace!

The life-boat of free grace!

(James Smith, “The Complaint!” 1864)

“I am cast down!”

And why are you cast down?

“My heart is burdened with a sense of my short-comings! Every duty I perform is so imperfect. Every purpose I form is so soon frustrated. Every hope of seeing better days is so soon beclouded.

My heart is so fearfully depraved.
My life is so unlike the life of Jesus.
My temper is so unholy.
My prayers are so brief and heartless.
My praises are so feeble and fitful.
I do so little good.
I live to so little purpose.
My evidences are so dim.
My prospects are so overcast.
I am harassed sometimes with the fear of death.
I cannot realize the glories of Heaven.
I am dissatisfied with the world — and yet glued to it!
I hate sin — and yet fall into it!
I am a riddle, a mystery, a mass of inconsistency!
Is it, then, any wonder that I am cast down?”

No, if you look at yourself, and pore over the things you have named — then it is no wonder that you are cast down! They are enough to cast anyone down! But if you carry them to the throne of grace, if you there confess them before God, if you look to Jesus to save you from them — then, in spite of them — you will not long be cast down.

I know it is difficult to do this. There is a natural proneness to pore over such things. One feels at times a secret liking to indulge in gloomy thoughts.

But we must look away from self — for if we do not, we shall become anxious, doubting and gloomy! We must run the race, not looking at our imperfections, short-comings, and failures — but looking unto Jesus. He knows what we are. He knew what we would be — before He called us by His grace; yes, before He shed His blood for us!

He loved us, as sinners.
He died for us, as sinners.
He called us, as sinners.

He saves us, as sinners. He will have all the glory of saving us, and He will get great glory by doing so, because we are such great sinners; and do not, cannot, do anything to repay Him for His wondrous love! Salvation is by free grace — from first to last! Believe this, and it will raise up your drooping mind!

The life-boat of free grace has put you on board the vessel of salvation, and that will convey you safely to the port of glory! Do not look at your spiritual destitution, or feebleness, or incapacity, or imperfections — but trust in your Pilot, rely on your Captain, and expect His mercy and merit to land you safe in Heaven at last!

As imperfect as you now are, and as imperfect you will be — your dying prayer will still be, “God be merciful unto me — a sinner!”

Hope in God!
His mercy is great unto the heavens,
His grace is as free as the air,
His love is as changeless as His nature,
His promise is as immutable as His love.

Hope in God, for you shall yet praise Him. He will save you for His own sake, and present you before assembled worlds as a monument of His mercy, and a trophy of His grace!

🎄 The Glorious Incarnation #23 ~ Meaning Of Christmas

“This is the meaning of Christmas. Oh, that God would waken your heart to your deep need for mercy as a sinner! And then ravish your heart with a great Savior, Jesus Christ. And then release your tongue to praise him and your hands to make his mercy shine in yours.”

John Piper, The Dawning of Indestructible Joy: Daily Readings for Advent

🎄 The Glorious Incarnation #14 ~ Christmas Gift

“Say to the next generation again and again: God is truthful; God keeps his word; God does not lie; God can be trusted! That’s one blessing of Advent. Receive it as a wonderful Christmas gift, and give it to as many people as you can.”

John Piper, The Dawning of Indestructible Joy: Daily Readings for Advent

🎄 The Glorious Incarnation #12 ~ Mission Of God

“Advent is a season for thinking about the mission of God to seek and to save lost people from the wrath to come. God raised him from the dead, “Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come” (1 Thess. 1:10). It’s a season for cherishing and worshiping this characteristic of God—that he is a searching and saving God, that he is a God on a mission, that he is not aloof or passive or indecisive. He is never in the maintenance mode, coasting or drifting. He is sending, pursuing, searching, saving. That’s the meaning of Advent.”

John Piper, The Dawning of Indestructible Joy: Daily Readings for Advent

Christian Community

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“Christian community is like the Christian’s sanctification. It is a gift of God which we cannot claim. Only God knows the real state of our fellowship, of our sanctification. What may appear weak and trifling to us may be great and glorious to God. Just as the Christian should not be constantly feeling his spiritual pulse, so, too, the Christian community has not been given to us by God for us to be constantly taking its temperature. The more thankfully we daily receive what is given to us, the more surely and steadily will fellowship increase and grow from day to day as God pleases.”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Life Together: The Classic Exploration of Faith in Community

The Simple Way

A couple of weeks ago, Paul (one of our preachers) asked if i’d like to share a song that’s on my heart before his sermon (which was yesterday). It’s not a full band song, but one where i accompany a single singer, a prayerful and reflective song. My first thoughts were “Oh yeah i’d love to go up to the front and terrify myself while i share some words and try to play a song”. So i said “Yes i’d love too”. He said “Great, the theme is unity”. 

As i went away i said “Wow, thank you Lord” as for nearly 2 months now i’ve been doing a personal daily expositional bible study on Ephesians 4 & 5, which is all about unity. Verses suddenly flooded my mind about unity in the Spirit through the bond of peace, unity in the faith, unity in the body and on and on they came. I started getting excited and thought instead of sharing a song, i’d share all of the things i’d been learning for about 6 hours instead! lol. 🙂

Then the more sobering verses and thoughts came along…

“If we are not growing in the knowledge and understanding of Christ, if Jesus isn’t the head, and if He is not leading the way, then unity is impossible!” Jesus who is The Way, The Truth and The Life, simply said “FOLLOW ME!”. 

✞ Song “The Simple Way” by Sara Sargent

I then went to ask my loving sister in Christ Sara if she would bless us with her beautiful voice while i accompany her on acoustic guitar, and to maybe show me some of the songs she had written but kept quiet. So last week Sara came and showed me “The Simple Way”, wow! 🙂

This is a short section of the song which i recorded on my iPhone as i was learning the guitar chords. The quality isn’t brilliant, but i hope you too are blessed by Sara’s beautiful voice. 

After the service people were saying that we should record it. I’d love to go to the local recording studio and record this song (and maybe a few others) What do you think?

✞ Music “I AM” by Jill Phillips

Oh gently lay your head upon my chest
And I will comfort you like a mother while you rest
And the tide can change so fast, but I will stay
The same through past, the same in future, same today

I am constant and I am near
I am peace that shatters all your secret fears
I am holy, I am wise
I’m the only one who knows your heart’s desires
Your heart’s desires

Oh weary, tired and worn, let out your sighs
And drop that heavy load you hold ’cause mine is light
And I know you through and through, there’s no need to hide
I want to show you love that is deep and high and wide

‘Cause I am constant and I am near
I am peace that shatters all your secret fears
I am holy, I am wise
I’m the only one who knows your heart’s desires
Your heart’s desires

I am constant, I am near
I am peace that shatters all your secret fears
I am holy, I am wise
I’m the only one who knows your heart’s desires
Your heart’s desires

Oh gently lay your head upon my chest
And I will comfort you like a mother while you resthttp://www.songlyrics.com/jill-phillips/i-am-lyrics/#mzHRFrV4slW5s9cE.99

The Peace Of God & The Blessing Of The Church Family

Sunday was especially blessed for me, as not only did i get to drum with the worship team, but i was asked to play a reflective song on guitar with my lovely wife Sarah on flute & Sara (the voice) singing. I chose the song “In Your Hands” by Unspoken (see video below) and shared a little about worry, and how we need to trustGod and  have more confidence in this promise to let his peace, the peace that’s beyond all understanding to guard our hearts and minds, as we offer everything (not some things) in prayer. 

After the service a group of us went down to the coast at Littlehampton and had a great day walking along the beach after eating chips then doughnuts! It was fantastic spending time with sisters & brothers and i felt truly blessed! 🙂 

A group photo of us in front of the beach and sea

⇧ From left: Ben, Hope, Mary, Sally, Sara & Me at front ⇧ 

Group photo in front of the beach and sea

⇧ From left: Ben, Sarah, Hope, Mary, Sally & Sara ⇧ 

close up of the groups shot

⇧ From left: Ben, Sarah, Hope, Mary, Sally & Sara ⇧

Me  Sarah

⇧ Me & Sarah ⇧ 

Sarah  Sara

⇧ Sarah & Sara ⇧

Hope  Sarah 3

⇧ Hope & Sarah ⇧

Sara  Hope

⇧ Mary & Hope ⇧ 

Sally  Sara

⇧ Sally & Mary ⇧

Ben  Me

⇧ Ben & Me ⇧ 

Little Hampton 1

⇧ From left: Sally, Mary, Hope, Sarah & Ben ⇧ 

 

In Your Hands Lyrics

The dawn is breaking and I can hear Your whisper in the breeze
The world is waking and I am here to meet You on my knees
When I’m with You my soul finds rest
Cause I can leave it in Your hands


The day keeps coming pulling me a different million ways
I’m always running but never seem to catch the things I chase
When I’m with You my soul finds rest
Cause I can leave it in Your hands


(Chorus)
 Every sorrow, I leave it in Your hands
Every sickness, I leave it in Your hands
All my failures, I leave them in Your hands
Amen, I leave it in Your hands



So I am laying the weight of all these burdens at Your feet
No more waiting, cause You’ve already won my victories
In Jesus my soul finds rest
Cause I can leave it in Your hands


(Chorus 2)
 Every promise, I leave it in Your hands
Every healing, I leave it in Your hands
And my future, I leave it in Your hands
Amen, I can leave it in Your hands


(Bridge )
It’s Your hands that form the mountains
Your hands set boundaries for the seas
And in Your hands You hold tomorrow
The same hands that took the nails for me


(Chorus 1)
(Chorus 2)

✞ Promise: Rejoice and Exult

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Romans 5:2 Amplified Bible

Through Him also we have [our] access (entrance, introduction) by faith into this grace (state of God’s favor) in which we [firmly and safely] stand. And let us rejoice and exult in our hope of experiencing and enjoying the glory of God.

✞ Music “Shadows” by David Crowder Band ft Lecrae

“Shadows”

When shadows fall on us
We will not fear
We will remember

When darkness falls on us
We will not fear
We will remember

When all seems lost
When we’re thrown and we’re tossed
We’ll remember the cost
We’re resting in the
Shadow of the cross

With every breath I take, every heart beat
Sunrise and the moon lights in the dark street
Every glance, every dance, every note of a song
All a gift undeserved that I shouldn’t have known
Every moment I lie, Every moment I covet
I’m deserving to die, I’m earning your judgment
I, without the cross there’s only condemnation
If Jesus wasn’t executed there’s no celebration
So in times that are good, in times that are bad
For any time I’ve had it all I will be glad
And I will boast in the cross, I boast in His name
I will boast in the sunshine, boast in His reign (rain)
What’s my life if it’s not praising You
Another dollar in my bank account of vain pursuit, I do
Not count my life as any value or precious at all

Let me finish my race, let me answer Your call

Update #1 On ‘Join Me In Prayer For Sarah’

Riding The Wave Of Prayers

 First i have to thank all of you amazing loving people for the show of extravagant love to me and Sarah. We’ve been simply overwhelmed with your prayers, kindness and love through this journey.

The Plan…

The plan was set. Go to the chemist to get pain killers (Sarah is not allowed d to leave the house for a few days), nip into the doctors to sort out a sick note for the next two weeks, then go for a [Cortado’ coffee at Costa at the train station with half an hour to enjoy our new fave coffee (mainly keep Sarah as relaxed as possible), then Sarah can put her last eye drops in before we catch the 11:04 train that will get us to Kings College Hospital, Denmark Hill, London ready for the operation. 

The Hypo…

This was all going well up until Sarah had locked herself in the toilet by passing out with a hypo. The idea was that she went in to put in her eye drops as we still had 15 minutes until the train arrives (the platform is about 1 minute away from the coffee shop. As i was stood outside the door while staff kept walking past suspicious of the weird man lurking around the toilets. With 5 minutes left i knocked on the door, with the sound of the music and the coffee machines i could just make out what i thought was Sarah. Then as i realised too much time had passed and we’d missed our train i asked one of the passing staff if they could open the door as i think my wife is having a hypo. Sarah had know her blood was creeping down and she had a biscuit and sugar in her coffee but she felt and seemed ok.

I opened the door to find Sarah in a zombie like state (the only description i can find that closely resembles a hypo) not knowing where she was, what she was doing or where we were going! I’d like to state at this point that we only really had one must do for this morning, and that was to try and keep Sarah’s blood sugar stable as they won’t operate if it’s too high, low or on the move. I prayed:

“Jesus, There is no way they can operate now, i did my best but i don’t know if there’s another train, if Sarah can even stand up, never mind walk,  and Sarah’s blood sugar always ends up too high after a hypo and we always have a long struggle getting it back down. i hand it all to you, please help”.

I got Sarah to her feet and she could just about stand up without her knees giving way. We managed to leave the coffee shop and after catching Sarah from behind as she started to fall back down the platform steps (i was behind trying to push her up) we finally got to the platform. This is where Sarah normally guides me as she knows the trains. Usually the trains are announced, but today there were none, but a train arrived straight away and we got on anyway. I told Sarah to just sleep on my shoulder and hope that this train is going the right way! The inside train announcement only said which station it was pulling up to and not the stations of the full journey. 

Sarah woke and asked “where are we?” “I’m not sure, but i hope it stops at Clapham Junction”. Then a few minutes later we arrived at Clapham Junction. We then walked to the other platform and a train was waiting there too. We finally arrived at the day surgery unit a couple of minutes before the 12:30 appointment.

Sarah did a blood test and it was 8.6 which is really good for her, but we knew that it often goes into the 20’s after a hypo and there’s no way they’ll operate if it goes any higher or continues to rise. Sarah went in around 13:00 but there were 4 people before her, I stayed in the waiting room.

The Waiting Room

I wanted to update everyone but i’d never used the mobile WordPress app to post before, so i kept the post “Praying in waiting room for Sarah” short so i could begin praying. I started with my voiceover reading all of your prayers, i prayed through each comment individually about 2 times each from the 1st post “Please Join Me In Prayer For Sarah” then i had about an hour of personal prayer before loving sister Janet would arrive to drive us home.

The Operation

Sarah’s op happened around 16:30, her blood sugar stayed perfectly stable at 6.8 the whole time! (Amazing!) Her main worry was the really painful needle that she sees going into her eye and it feels like her eyeball is bursting out of her face! I need to quote Sarah at this point:

“I felt a real peace i’d not felt before, i knew everyone was praying for me and i knew God was with me the whole time. I felt no pain at all with the needle and the surgeon was surprised how well the operation went. I also heard him say:

‘There are always bubbles in this (not sure what he was talking about) always bubbles, but there aren’t any at all, i can’t explain it?!’ 

The Next Morning

I’m typing this post Saturday morning  at 11am while Sarah is sleeping. I’d like to thank you all once again for giving time in prayer and the loving encouraging comments that helped us through this amazing journey (and still help us as we read back through them). I’ll update again soon.

Sarah said to me this morning:

I felt like the whole day you had your arms around me, and God had his arms around both of us!

✞ Music “Always Been About You” by Fellowship Creative

It’s just gone 2am here in the UK and i’ve just saved Sarah from another nasty hypo (yay, i didn’t need to call the ambulance out!). This song was playing on the radio and helping me stay awake. I’ve never heard this song before so i thought i would share it with you now all is well! 🙂

Above All, Put On Love

Verse Logo

Colossians 3:12-17 (VOICE)

Paul tells them the key to remain unified is to show compassion and forgiveness toward one another.

Since you are all set apart by God, made holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with a holy way of life: compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Put up with one another. Forgive. Pardon any offenses against one another, as the Lord has pardoned you, because you should act in kind. But above all these, put on love! Love is the perfect tie to bind these together. Let your hearts fall under the rule of the Anointed’s peace (the peace you were called to as one body), and be thankful.

Let the word of the Anointed One richly inhabit your lives. With all wisdom teach, counsel, and instruct one another. Sing the psalms, compose hymns and songs inspired by the Spirit, and keep on singing—sing to God from hearts full and spilling over with thankfulness. Surely, no matter what you are doing (speaking, writing, or working), do it all in the name of Jesus our Master, sending thanks through Him to God our Father.

For Paul it isn’t enough just to believe the right things. Right belief always produces right living. The gift of salvation demands that we put into practice the character of our King. Just as we take off and throw away old, worn-out clothes, we must strip off certain attitudes and actions of our old selves. Since our lives have been made new in Him, things like sexual immorality, greed, anger, lies, and the rest must find no place in us. But it is not enough to strip off the old; we must put on the new. And that new creation has many qualities of Jesus: compassion, gentleness, and humility; putting up with each other, forgiving each other, and above all, loving each other. These are the ways of Jesus, so they must be our ways too.

The Peace Of God

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Philippians 4:6-7 (VOICE)

Don’t be anxious about things; instead, pray. Pray about everything. He longs to hear your requests, so talk to God about your needs and be thankful for what has come. And know that the peace of God (a peace that is beyond any and all of our human understanding) will stand watch over your hearts and minds in Jesus, the Anointed One.

In Perfect Sync With God’s Spirit

Verse Logo

Galatians 5:13-26 (VOICE)

Brothers and sisters, God has called you to freedom! Hear the call, and do not spoil this gift by using your liberty to engage in what your flesh desires; instead, use it to serve each other as Jesus taught through love. For the whole law comes down to this one instruction: “Love your neighbor as yourself,” so why all this vicious gnawing on each other? If you are not careful, you will find you’ve eaten each other alive!

Here’s my instruction: walk in the Spirit, and let the Spirit bring order to your life. If you do, you will never give in to your selfish and sinful cravings. For everything the flesh desires goes against the Spirit, and everything the Spirit desires goes against the flesh. There is a constant battle raging between them that prevents you from doing the good you want to do. But when you are led by the Spirit, you are no longer subject to the law.

It’s clear that our flesh entices us into practicing some of its most heinous acts: participating in corrupt sexual relationships, impurity, unbridled lust, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, arguing, jealousy, anger, selfishness, contentiousness, division, envy of others’ good fortune, drunkenness, drunken revelry, and other shameful vices that plague humankind. I told you this clearly before, and I only tell you again so there is no room for confusion: those who give in to these ways will not inherit the kingdom of God.

Paul has been preaching about the call of God to freedom, and so he now spells it out: we are done with the demands of the law; now we are free to live in the Spirit and to be truly right with God. As free people, the Spirit gives us the characteristics of Jesus; we, too, can freely love in joy and peace. We can have patience along with kindness and faithfulness that can only come from the Father. We can reflect the goodness of God while being gentle in operating with self-control. For those who follow Him and live in the Spirit, these characteristics or fruits are a gift from God. As we grow in the faith, we find that we belong to God and can walk daily in the Spirit.

The Holy Spirit produces a different kind of fruit: unconditional love, joy, peace, patience, kindheartedness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. You won’t find any law opposed to fruit like this. Those of us who belong to the Anointed One have crucified our old lives and put to death the flesh and all the lusts and desires that plague us.

Now since we have chosen to walk with the Spirit, let’s keep each step in perfect sync with God’s Spirit. This will happen when we set aside our self-interests and work together to create true community instead of a culture consumed by provocation, pride, and envy.

There’s No Ceiling To Hope

Hope Logo

This is a post for all of my sisters & brothers out there who are struggling at the moment. I just wanted to try and inspire you with some of the Songs/Poems i’ve posted on here. Some will have already read them, but its really on my heart to try and help you as you fight with your day to day struggles. Peace be with you.

page links for my Songs/Poems: 

I Hope these songs/poems will reach out to people who can relate to some of the feelings i went through on my Journey! But i want you to know that you are never alone and a new Life of Love, Joy & inner Peace are waiting for you. Check out my “About” page to read a little more about my journey.

The Crossroads

 

📖 Verse 4 2day – Jeremiah 6:16 (NIV)

This is what the Lord says: ‘Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. But you said, “We will not walk in it.”

The Message (MSG)

God’s Message yet again: “Go stand at the crossroads and look around. Ask for directions to the old road, The tried-and-true road. Then take it. Discover the right route for your souls. But they said, ‘Nothing doing. We aren’t going that way.’

📖 Another Verse 4 2day – John 14:23-27

Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me.

“All this I have spoken while still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. 

My Thoughts 💭 

Why do we choose to set our ‘Simple Disobedience’ button to on in our human settings, even when we know God loves obedience from us?

 Are there any switches that need turning ‘OFF’ in your obedience walk?

Do you have the ‘Holy Spirit’ set to ON? 

🙏 Prayer 4 2day! 

Holy Spirit, open my eyes today as I stand at the crossroads. Guide me away from where my flesh wants to go. Give me the wisdom to obey and hear your loving words as you gently guide me towards the light, Amen.

 

Password??

Password

📖 Verse 4 2day! 

John 14:6 (NIV)
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

My Thoughts 💭

When we struggle with Guilt, worry, fear, people or any problem at all, the Bible says that we should take it to Jesus and he will free you from your chains and give rest to your soul.

So why, when we know the correct password to unlock all of these problems and issues is “Jesus”. Why do we constantly insist on entering the wrong one!

Are you screaming at the issues for not accepting your password??

Try “Jesus”

📖 another Verse 4 2day! 

Matthew 11:28 (NLT)
Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.


🙏 Prayer 4 2day! 

“Dear Father,
I need you now because I am full of stress and anxiety. Reading your Word brings comfort, as I ask you to come and take my heavy burdens. I take each burden, one by one, and lay them at your feet. Please carry them for me so that I don’t have to. Replace them with your humble and gentle yoke so that I will find rest for my soul today. I receive your gift of peace of mind and heart. I know that you, Lord, will keep me safe. I am not afraid because you are always with me, Amen”



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