Monday, May 11, 2015

Devotional Themes from May 2 Saturday Evening Prayer Service

Resistance and Solidarity 

The sole and basic source of our strength is the solidarity of workers, peasants and academics, the solidarity of the nation, the solidarity of people who seek to live in dignity, truth, and in harmony with their conscience. Lech Walesa 

We are up against the unseen power that controls this dark world and the spiritual agents are from the very headquarters of evil. Therefore, we must wear the "whole armor of God" that we may be able to resist evil in its day of power, and that even when we have fought to a stand-still, we may still stand our ground. Corrie ten Boom 

The strength of the good soldier of Jesus Christ appears in nothing more than in steadfastly maintaining the holy calm, meekness, sweet-ness, and benevolence of his mind, amidst all the storms, injuries, strange behavior, and surprising acts and events of this evil and unrea-sonable world. Jonathan Edwards 

R e a d :   ( P s a l m   4 0   f r o m   N a n   M e r r i l l ) 

I waited patiently for my Beloved Lord, who heard my cry and came to me. He raised me from the pits of despair, out of my confusion and fear, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. There is a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to the Lord. May many see and rejoice, may they put their trust in God. 

Blessed are those who make the Lord’s Love their home, who do not turn to the proud, to those who follow false gods. O Beloved, how wondrous are your gifts to us; your thoughts are beyond our comprehension. What joy to live in oneness with you! Were we to proclaim and tell of your beauty and blessed grace, to what could we compare it? 

Sing: Nothing can trouble, nothing can frighten, 
Those who seek God shall never go wanting. 
Nothing can trouble, nothing can frighten, God alone fills us. 

Sacrifice and offering are not what you desire from us; for you have opened the eyes of our heart. Burnt offerings are not required. My heart yields and surrenders to you; in the Book of Life may it be written: “I abandon myself into your hands, God. I love you and wish only to live with you at the center of my life, O my Beloved, for you are the Life of my soul forever.” 

I tell the glad news of Love's way to all who will listen. Yes, I raise my voice, with praise and acclamation. I tell of Love's saving grace within my heart, I speak of Love's faithfulness and healing power. I desire to reveal your steadfast love and truth through the witness of my life. Do not, O Beloved, withhold your mercy from me. Let your Love, your Light, and Faithfulness ever guide and uphold me. 

Sing: Nothing can trouble, nothing can frighten, 
Those who seek God shall never go wanting. 
Nothing can trouble, nothing can frighten, God alone fills us. 

In your mercy, O Lord, deliver me! O Lord, make haste to help me! Let my fears be put to rest, fears that separate me from You; Let all that keeps me from love, from peace and gratitude, be removed from my heart. 

And may all who seek Love rejoice and be glad; may all who desire to live in truth and justice, continually call upon your love. As for me, though often broken and weak, I know that Love dwells within my heart. I give witness to your Peace and Love, O Teacher and Friend to All! 

Sing: Nothing can trouble, nothing can frighten, 
Those who seek God shall never go wanting. 
Nothing can trouble, nothing can frighten, God alone fills us. 

S i n g :   I n   G o d   A l o n e

L e t   u s   p r a y   t o g e t h e r :   f r o m  H i l d e g a r d  o f   B i n g e n 

Jesus Christ, the love who gives us love. 
You are higher than the highest star. 
You are deeper than the deepest sea. 
You cherish us as your family. 
You embrace us as your own spouse. 
You rule over us as your subjects. 
You welcome us as your dearest friend. 

S i n g :   I n   G o d   A l o n e 

Spirit of God, the life that gives us life. 
You are the cause of all movement in life. 
You are the breath of all creatures. 
You are the medicine that purifies our souls. 
You are the salve that heals our wounds. 
You are the fire that warms our hearts. 
You are the lamp that guides our feet. 
Let all the world praise you. 

S i n g :   I n   G o d   A l o n e 

O Eternal God, turn us into the arms and hands, 
The legs and feet, of your beloved Son, Jesus. 
You dwelt with him in heaven before the creation of the earth. 
You gave birth to us on earth to become his living body. 
Make us able to be his limbs, and worthy to share his eternal bliss. 

S i n g :   I n    G o d   A l o n e 

P r a y :   L e t   u s   s p e n d   f i v e   m i n u t e s   i n   c o n t e m p l a t i v e   
p r a y e r 

S c r i p t u r e :   E p h e s i a n s   6 : 1 1 - 1 8   J e r u s a l e m   B i b l e 

     Finally, grow strong in the Lord, with the strength of his power. Put God's armor on so as to be able to resist the devil's tactics. For it is not against human enemies that we have to struggle, but against the Sovereignties and the Pow-ers who originate the darkness in this world, the spiritual army of evil in the heavens. 
     That is why you must rely on God's armor, or you will not be able to put up any resistance when the worst happens, or have enough resources to hold you ground. So stand your ground, with truth buckled around your waist, and integ-rity for a breastplate, wearing for shoes on your feet the gospel of peace and always carrying the shield of faith so that you can use it to put out the burning arrows of the evil one. 
     And then you must accept salvation from God to be your helmet and re-ceive the word of God from the Spirit to use as a sword. Pray all the time, ask-ing for what you need, praying in the Spirit on every possible occasion. 

S i n g :   L a m b   o f   G o d                                                                      # 2 1 1 3 

S i n g :   I n   t h e   L o r d   I ' l l    B e   E ve r   T h a n k f u l 

In the Lord I'll be ever thankful, 
In the Lord I will rejoice! Look to God, do not be afraid. 
Lift up your voices, the Lord is near, Lift up your voices, the Lord is near. 

G o   i n   P e a c e : 

Let us not lie down tonight with sin, nor shall sin nor sin’s shadow 
lie down with us this night or any other night. 
O God of life, this night, O darken not to us Thy light. 
O God of life, this night, close not Thy gladness to our sight. 
O God of life, this night, Thy door to us, O shut not tight, 
O God of life, this night, be our refuge and our comfort. 
And be it on Thine own beloved arm, O God of grace, 
that we in peace shall waken. 
The peace of all peace be ours this night in the name of the Father, 
and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. 

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