Posts Tagged ‘grace’

1 Peter 5:1-5

A word to all the elders
Of their duty to their flock
To not outsource what matters
To the newest on the block

Zeal is no replacement for
Years of humble loving service
Yet instead of arrogance
Knowing this should us nervous

That we not become motivated
By doing any of this for our gain
For the foundation we do any of it
Is to bring glory to one Name

The chief shepherd is returning
To share glory never fading
So we can encourage all the sheep
There will come an end to our waiting

We must put on true humility
(Not false airs of self denial)
As servants of new sheep arrived
Not judges at a trial.

We serve as we have been served
And Love as He’s Loved us
Empowered by the Spirit given
And through whom we place our trust

He will return to complete everything
His promises He’ll keep
Until that day we continue in Love,
To serve and pursue His sheep

Luke 15:1-7

We see the mighty shepherd
Rejoice over His sheep
He sings over His flock with Love
Where no predators can creep

But sometimes He shifts His focus
To one whose wandered away
They didn’t stay within the flock
Or listen to what He’d say

His Loving heart compels Him
To go and seek the one
Even after much time has passed
And setting of the sun

His work He won’t have given up
He continues to pursue
No matter whether the sheep turns out
To be a lamb, a ram, or ewe

His eyes filled with emotion
He looks wherever He can
For losing even a single sheep
Wasn’t in His plan

The other sheep grow restless
Safely in their pen
They stamp their hooves indignantly
For the Shepherd to return again

We’ve heard the illustration
Perhaps one too many times
For we too quickly dismiss the fact
We may not be the ninety-nine…

1 Peter 1:23-25

Have I still a seed imperishable,
Somewhere planted deep inside?
Or has such seed germinated already
The perishable having died?

The good news was something I’ve heard
In more than one way as I’ve grown
Although I’ll confess, in the beginning
It wasn’t good soil to be sown

But for years now I’ve tried to nurture
The right conditions for growing
And I believe by the Spirits power
There’s even some fruit that is showing

I see His Love reflected
In my home, and the way we exist
But there’s still a holy examine
For something I may have missed

I do not want to live anxious
Wondering if I bear “enough” fruit
For the “good news” also reminds us
That our efforts to measure are moot.

It is not our achievements or fruit bearing
That will cause God’s heart to inflame
It’s the way that we set performance aside
And humbly call on His name

Knowing full well that He loves us
Throughout His Word He assures
It’s not the the things that we do in His name
But only His Word, that endures.

John 12:1-11

This final cast of characters
From years of Jesus’ service
Would be enough to make any good Jew
More than a little nervous

Gathered in the home of Lazarus
(Who was raised from unclean dead.)
And in comes an emotional woman
Washing his feet with the hair of her head

Her hair was filled with fragrance
That filled the home with scent
Making Judas seem indignant
At what such a gesture meant

Surely the value of such things
Could be used in better ways
(“Trust me”, he may have thought to himself
“I know someone who pays.”)

An awkward meal, it may have been
The dead serving the dying
And more than one among them
Who would end the week by lying

What dinner conversations
Do such moments offer friends?
When you know the lives you share
Are coming to an end?

Still Jesus welcomed all who came
From curiosity or Love
No matter our motivation
A desire to know more is enough

Enough to join a moment
Where He offers to break bread
There’s no better time, or week than now
To read through all He said

His words were not spoke hastily
For God knew they’d be received
Every word was spoken that we
His Love would come to believe.

Matthew 21:1-11

As Jesus was preparing
To enter the city of Gods people
He didn’t demand a fanfare
Or ornate windows, pews, and steeple

He chose a humble way to enter
As prophets had foretold
Even though such entry still
Invited His followers to be bold.

To be bold in their humility
To not give their Lord a steed
To not publicly declare that here
Is the King all people need.

To follow His example
And respond to the prophet’s voice
He offered them a moment
For their hearts to make a choice

Is Christ the Lord He says He is?
Or can I make Him the Lord I desire?
Is it enough to ignite a spark
That inflames a Holy Fire?

Or do I demand to see results
And see Caesars be deposed?
These were thoughts of His followers then
And we can be sure, He knows.

He knows that we have similar ones
We want a Lord who acts
We want to know if we follow Him
That God will have our back.

In the way Jesus enters, though
He invites us from the start
Not to follow to get what we want
But because New Life is in our Heart.

Lamentations 3:55-66

Just in case we might forget
Or think our suffering unique
God has included in His Word
More than just a peek

A look into the sufferings
His people have endured
And all the times He’s come back
And helped them feel assured

Not that He would swoop in
And end their situation
(Although sometimes that’s what He did
For both individuals and nations.)

But there are many other times
The words that we now read
Were written by those for whom it seems
God didn’t intercede

It’s good for us to remember
God’s faithfulness remains
Even if the road we’re on
Doesn’t seem to change

God reveals in Jesus
A reality yet unseen
The place that helps us understand
What our reality means.

A more foundational dimension
Where God exists complete
Where Jesus is Lord over all things
And there’s no enemy to defeat.

The crazy thing about it as
We wait for such a reality to come near
The good news proclaimed by Jesus
Is that it is already here!

Will we help reveal it
Or will we get distracted?
That’s why each Sunday we remember
The resurrection He enacted

Philippians 1:21-30

To be so deeply loving Christ
He’s unsure which to choose
To die and be with Christ himself
Or stay alive so Christ may use

Paul wrestles briefly with this choice
(But for the readers’ sake-
As he himself is facing death
And knows their hearts would break.)

He wants every word to encourage
Whether he’s with them or apart
That they would live in ways that proclaim
And reveal their Saviors heart.

He knows that they are suffering
The same struggle that he had
And doesn’t sugar-coat the truth
Or tell them “it’s not so bad.”

He acknowledges what they endure
While drawing close together
That as they live by one spirit
No opponent can ever sever

Where God has brought salvation
By the gracious Love of Christ,
No enemy can stand against
Or charge a greater price

So stand firm, church, and know that Paul
Will do the same however he can,
And he will share in your gospel boasting
When he joins you again.

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