Grasping the Wonder of Grace

“For every one look you take at your sin, take ten looks at Jesus.” Robert Murray M’Cheyne spoke these words to his congregation in Scotland in the early 1800s. We do well to heed M’Cheyne’s counsel as we regularly confess our sins to the Lord and experience anew the assurance of forgiveness. The regular discipline … Continue reading Grasping the Wonder of Grace

A Prayer of Confession for Good Friday

Merciful Father, we meet each other today at the foot of the cross. We wait with each other as those who inflict wounds on one another: Have mercy on us. As those who spurn Your love for other loves: Be merciful to us. As those who put our trust in power and prestige: Be merciful … Continue reading A Prayer of Confession for Good Friday

Barabbas and Jesus – A Prayer of Confession of Sin

Luke 23:18 - But they all cried out together, “Away with this man, and release to us Barabbas (whose name means 'son of the father').” 23:22 - A third time he [Pilate] said to them, “Why? What evil has he done? I have found in him no guilt deserving death. God, our heavenly Father, we … Continue reading Barabbas and Jesus – A Prayer of Confession of Sin

Putting on Airs vs. Putting on Armor

A Prayer of Confession Gracious heavenly Father, we confess that we put on airs more often than we put on Your armor. Forgive us for our self-promotion, self-protection and self-reliance. Pardon us for not cherishing and trusting in Your gifts of righteousness, faith, and salvation during times of temptation and spiritual conflict. Transform us by … Continue reading Putting on Airs vs. Putting on Armor

In the Presence of a Holy God – Isaiah 6

It was a devastating blow.  Like all devoted citizens, Isaiah had venerated King Uzziah. For fifty-two years, King Uzziah had led Judah in an administration of peace and prosperity. It was an era of expansion and achievement. Now he was dead.  The throne sat empty.  It was unfortunate that the king had rebelled against the … Continue reading In the Presence of a Holy God – Isaiah 6

Word-Saturated Worship

Scripture suffuses every part of our worship services. We call one another to our awesome task of worshipping God with Scripture. We sing God’s praise with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs in order to make God’s Word memorable and vivid. The Spirit uses God’s Word to convict us of sin and to show us our … Continue reading Word-Saturated Worship

Psalm 32

Psalm 32 instructs us that the only people who are truly happy are those who experience God’s forgiveness. Therefore, the refusal to openly confess our sins leads only to spiritual and physical misery.  Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity, … Continue reading Psalm 32

A Three-fold Cycle of Worship

There is a notable pattern to many of the worship encounters that we find in the Bible. For example, the prophet Isaiah’s encounter with the great God of heaven in Isaiah 6 offers us a three fold cycle for corporate and personal worship: Praise-Pardon-Petition. This pattern serves as a broad structure to our church's worship … Continue reading A Three-fold Cycle of Worship