Thursday, March 22, 2007

If God Himself Be for Me

If God Himself Be for Me

1. If God Himself be for me,
I may a host defy;
For when I pray, before me
My foes, confounded, fly.
If Christ, my Head and Master,
Befriend me from above,
What foe or what disaster
Can drive me from His love?

2. This I believe, yea, rather,
Of this I make my boast,
That God is my dear Father,
The Friend who loves me most,
And that, whate'er betide me,
My Savior is at hand
Through stormy seas to guide me
And bring me safe to land.

3. I build on this foundation,
That Jesus and His blood
Alone are my salvation,
The true, eternal good.
Without Him all that pleases
Is valueless on earth;
The gifts I owe to Jesus
Alone my love are worth.

4. My Jesus is my Splendor,
My Sun, my Light, alone;
Were He not my Defender
Before God's awe-full throne,
I never should find favor
And mercy in His sight,
But be destroyed forever
As darkness by the light.

5. He canceled my offenses,
Delivered me from death;
He is the Lord who cleanses
My soul from sin through faith.
In Him I can be cheerful,
Bold, and undaunted aye;
In Him I am not fearful
Of God's great Judgment Day.

6. Naught, naught, can now condemn me
Nor set my hope aside;
Now hell no more can claim me,
Its fury I deride.
No sentence e'er reproves me,
No ill destroys my peace;
For Christ, my Savior, loves me
And shields me with His grace.

7. His Spirit in me dwelleth,
And o'er my mind He reigns.
All sorrow He dispelleth
And soothes away all pains.
He crowns His work with blessing
And helpeth me to cry,
"My Father!" without ceasing,
To Him who dwells on high.

8. And when my soul is lying
Weak, trembling, and opprest,
He pleads with groans and sighing
That cannot be exprest;
But God's quick eye discerns them,
Although they give no sound,
And into language turns them
E'en in the heart's deep ground.

9. To mine His Spirit speaketh
Sweet word of holy cheer,
How God to him that seeketh
For rest is always near
And how He hath erected
A city fair and new,
Where what our faith expected
We evermore shall view.

10. In yonder home doth flourish
My heritage, my lot;
Though here I die and perish,
My heaven shall fail me not.
Though care my life oft saddens
And causeth tears to flow,
The light of Jesus gladdens
And sweetens every woe.

11. Who clings with resolution
To Him whom Satan hates
Must look for persecution;
For him the burden waits
Of mockery, shame, and losses,
Heaped on his blameless head;
A thousand plagues and crosses
Will be his daily bread.

12. From me this is not hidden,
Yet I am not afraid;
I leave my cares, as bidden,
To whom my vows were paid.
Though life and limb it cost me
And everything I won,
Unshaken shall I trust Thee
And cleave to Thee alone.

13. Though earth be rent asunder,
Thou'rt mine eternally;
Not fire nor sword nor thunder
Shall sever me from Thee;
Not hunger, thirst, nor danger,
Not pain nor poverty
Nor mighty princes' anger
Shall ever hinder me.

14. No angel and no gladness,
No throne, no pomp, no show,
No love, no hate, no sadness,
No pain, no depth of woe,
No scheme of man's contrivance,
However small or great,
Shall draw me from Thy guidance
Nor from Thee separate.

15. My heart for joy is springing
And can no more be sad,
'Tis full of mirth and singing,
Sees naught but sunshine glad.
The Sun that cheers my spirit
Is Jesus Christ, my King;
That which I shall inherit
Makes me rejoice and sing.

by Paul Gerhardt, 1607-1676

Monday, March 19, 2007

Jesus My Redeemer, My King

Jesus My Redeemer, My King

Thou art my Rock and my Fortress
Thou art my hiding place
Under Thy wing of protection
Thy Word I truly embrace

Thou givest me song in the nighttime
Thou givest me light on the way
Directing my every footstep
Protecting my night and my day

A Shepherd Thou art in my life, Lord
Thy rod and staff guide my way
Gently prodding, pulling and guiding
My heart at Thy Throne I do lay

What comfort Thou givest this pilgrim
What peace and joy lies within
Tis nothing I could do for myself, Lord
Only Thy Blood cleanseth me from this sin

Dear Jesus, Thou art my Deliverer
On Thee will I focus my heart
Thou hast given me life eternal
My name from Thy Book will not part

I will meet Thee, my Lord, my Redeemer
When my course on earth has been run
And my eyes will be able to see Thee
Then in person I'll worship the Son!

Oh come join me all ye who love Him
Let our voices ne'er cease to sing
Cast thy burdens at Jesus' Precious Feet
Shout Hosannah to our Heavenly King!

June 16, 2006
Kate Plourde
Used With Permission

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Forgiven

Not far from New York is a cemetery lone.
Close guarding its grave stands a simple headstone,
And all the inscription is one word alone - “FORGIVEN.”

No sculpture’s fine art hath embellished its form,
But constantly there, through the calm and the storm,
It beareth this word from a poor fallen worm - “FORGIVEN.”

It shows not the place of the silent one’s birth,
Reveals not his frailties not lies of his worth,
But tells out its tale from those few feet of earth - “FORGIVEN.”

The death is unmentioned; the name is untold;
Beneath lies the body, corrupted and cold;
Above rest his spirit, at home in the fold - “FORGIVEN.”

And when, from heavens, the LORD shall descend,
This stranger shall rise and to God ascend,
Well known and befriended, to sing without end - “FORGIVEN.”

We Christians are not perfect – just “FORGIVEN.”

Author Uncertain

I tried doing an online search for this poem and could not find it or its author listed. I am not even sure if the last line is part of the original poem - but it was sent to me today by my pastor.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

I've Found The Pearl Of Greatest Price

I've Found The Pearl Of Greatest Price

I’ve found the Pearl of greatest price,
My heart doth sing for joy;
And sing I must, for Christ is mine!
Christ shall my song employ.

Christ is my Prophet, Priest, and King;
My Prophet full of light,
My great High Priest before the throne,
My King of heav’nly might.

For He indeed is Lord of lords,
And He the King of kings;
He is the Sun of Righteousness,
With healing in His wings.

Christ is my Peace; He died for me,
For me He shed His blood;
And as my wondrous Sacrifice,
Offered Himself to God.

Christ Jesus is my All in all,
My Comfort and my Love,
My Life below, and He shall be
My Joy and Crown above.

My Christ, He is the Tree of Life
Which in God's garden grows;
Whose fruits do feed, whose leaves do heal;
My Christ is Sharon’s Rose.

Christ is my Meat, Christ is my Drink,
My Medicine and Health;
My Peace, my Strength, my Joy, my Crown,
My Glory, and my Wealth.

My Saviour is the Heaven of Heavens,
And what shall I Him call?
My Christ is First, my Christ is Last,
My Christ is All in All.

~John Mason~

(Taken in part from the website linked above, and partly from two other sources.)

Click here for a study on the theme of Jesus Is Prophet, Priest And King

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Testing

Are you passing through a testing?
Is your pillow wet with tears?
Do you wonder what the reason,
Why it seems God never hears?
Why it is you have no answer
To your oft-repeated plea,
Why the heaven still is leaden
As you wait on bended knee?

Do you wonder as you suffer,
Whether God does understand?
And if so, why He ignores you,
And fails to hold you in His hand?
Do black doubts creep in, assail you,
Fears without, and fears within,
Till your brave heart almost falters
And gives way to deadly sin?

All God's testing have a purpose-
Some day you will see the light.
All He asks is that you trust Him,
Walk by faith and not by sight.
Do not fear when doubts beset you,
Just remember - He is near;
He will never, never leave you,
He will always, always hear.

Faithful is He who has promised,
He will never let you fall,
Daily will the strength be given;
Strength for each and strength for all.
He will gladly share pain with you,
He will gladly give you peace,
Till your tired and weary body,
Finds its blessed, glad release.

When the darkened veil is lifted,
Then, dear heart, you'll understand,
Why it is you had to suffer,
Why you could not feel His hand.
Giving strength when it was needed,
Giving power and peace within,
Giving joy thru tears and trial,
Giving victory over sin.

So till then just keep on trusting,
Thru the sunshine and the rain,
Thru the tears and thru the heart-aches,
Thru the smiles and thru the pain.
Knowing that our Father watches,
Knowing daily strength He'll give,
Victory for each passing hour,
This is life, so let us live!

~Author Unknown~

I found various versions of this online, and adapted it to what seemed to be the most common lines. If someone knows the original author and/or edition of this poem, please let me know. Thank you.

Monday, March 12, 2007

This Is Jim Checking In

THIS IS JIM CHECKING IN

A minister passing through his church in the middle of the day,
decided to pause by the altar and see who had come to pray.

Just then the back door opened, a man came down the aisle,
the minister frowned as he saw the man hadn't shaved in a while.

His shirt was kinda shabby and his coat was worn and frayed,
the man knelt, he bowed his head, then rose and walked away.

In the days that followed, each noon time came this chap,
each time he knelt just for a moment, a lunch pail in his lap.

Well, the minister's suspicions grew, with robbery a main fear,
He decided to stop the man and ask him, "What are you doing here?"

The old man said, he worked down the road. Lunch was half an hour.
Lunch time was his prayer time, for finding strength and power.

"I stay only moments, see, because the factory is so far away;
as I kneel here talking to the Lord, this is kinda what I say:

I JUST CAME AGAIN TO TELL YOU, LORD, HOW HAPPY I'VE BEEN,
SINCE WE FOUND EACH OTHER'S FRIENDSHIP AND YOU TOOK AWAY MY SIN.
DON'T KNOW MUCH OF HOW TO PRAY, BUT THINK ABOUT YOU EVERYDAY.
SO, JESUS, THIS IS JIM CHECKING IN TODAY."

The Minister feeling foolish, told Jim, that was fine.
He told Jim he was welcome to come and pray just anytime.

Time to go, Jim smiled, said "Thanks." He hurried to the door.
The minister knelt at the altar, he'd never done it before.

His cold heart melted, warmed with love, and met with Jesus there.
As the tears flowed, in his heart, he repeated old Jim's prayer:

"I JUST CAME AGAIN TO TELL YOU, LORD, HOW HAPPY I'VE BEEN,
SINCE WE FOUND EACH OTHER'S FRIENDSHIP AND YOU TOOK AWAY MY SIN.
I DON'T KNOW MUCH OF HOW TO PRAY, BUT I THINK ABOUT YOU EVERYDAY.
SO, JESUS, THIS IS ME CHECKING IN TODAY."

Past noon one day, the minister noticed that old Jim hadn't come.
As more days passed without Jim, he began to worry some.

At the factory, he asked about him, learning he was ill.
The hospital staff was worried, but he'd given them a thrill.

The week that Jim was with them, brought changes in the ward.
His smiles, a joy contagious. Changed people, were his reward.

The head nurse couldn't understand why Jim was so glad,
when no flowers, calls or cards came, not a visitor he had.

The minister stayed by his bed, he voiced the nurse's concern:
No friends came to show they cared. He had nowhere to turn.

Looking surprised, old Jim spoke up and with a winsome smile;
"the nurse is wrong, she couldn't know, that in here all the while

Everyday at noon He's here, a dear friend of mine, you see,
He sits right down, takes my hand, leans over and says to me:

"I JUST CAME AGAIN TO TELL YOU, JIM, HOW HAPPY I HAVE BEEN,
SINCE WE FOUND THIS FRIENDSHIP, AND I TOOK AWAY YOUR SIN.
ALWAYS LOVE TO HEAR YOU PRAY, I THINK ABOUT YOU EACH DAY,
AND SO JIM, THIS IS JESUS CHECKING IN TODAY."

(Author: Sonny Salsbury)