Nara ekele mo (Thanksgiving)

What shall I render to Jehovah? For he has done so very much for me.

Where is the thanksgiving in your praise? How often do you reflect on your life and just think, God has been there for me in ways no one else can or will? It is our Father’s will (1 Thessalonians 5:18) for us to give thanks in ALL circumstances, even the ones that don’t make much sense to us at the time. But remember all the times God has brought you through difficulty or given you direction in a tough time. Remember that God has a perfect will planned for your life, and all He asks in return is for you to join in covenant with Him and obey His word. He teaches us how to love and forgive, and gives us the greatest gifts.

What more, then, can we do but praise and worship Him with thanksgiving?

The song says:

He’s done so much for me
I can not tell it all eh
Nara ekele mo (Take my thanksgiving)
If I Had ten thousand tongues
It still won’t be enough Jesus
Nara ekele mo (Take my thanksgiving)
Chukwu na gwom o ria le (God that heals my disease/sickness)
when You heal You heal completely
Nara ekele mo (Take my thanksgiving)
Chukwu mara obim o (God that knows my heart)
isi ikendu le (Living water)
Nara ekele mo (Take my thanksgiving)

Let us make this our confession this morning as praise and worship our God!

All Things Get Better

This song opens up with a question of what God sees in us. How can God see what goes in our lives and in our minds, and still love us? How can we make mistake after mistake, and He will forgive us? How can we face judgement on a daily basis from the those around us who we do see, but have faith that God sees beyond that?

You are filthy and unworthy of the love of God. You have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, you don’t deserve love. You got yourself in your situation and God is not going to rescue you. You are depressed. You are poor. You are a liar. You have little faith! These are the lies the Devil tells us, but the Bible says:

1 John 3:1 “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!”

1 Peter 2:9 “But you are A CHOSEN RACE, A royal PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR God’s OWN POSSESSION, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light”

Ephesians 1:4-5 “He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will”

Romans 8:29-30 ”
For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.”

Matthew 26:28 ” for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.”

This song reminds us of a powerful truth: “Not one mistake can undo grace. Your love is forever.” No matter what lies the Devil is filling your head with, remember the God you serve is already victorious over death and sin, that salvation is a gift freely given and that God is waiting with open arms! Praise God for all He has done and know that your worst days are behind you, all things will only get better! Selah.

Photo provided by Ben White

Everything

Everything. This song is an anthem for the true believer.

What is your commitment level to God? He is fully committed to you, with arms wide open He is always there to comfort us. His glory is great and His grace and mercy is sufficient for us. Jesus came to earth and executed the ultimate mission for our salvation. God is continuously operating in His power and purpose.

Our purpose as followers and believers is to worship Him.

The bible says:
Isaiah 43:7:”Everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made.”
Revelation 4:11:“Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created.”
Hebrews 13:15:”Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name.
Romans 12:1: “I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.

How many of us give God everything? How many of us can truly say that in everything we do, in our praise and worship, in prayer, in our daily lives, that we give EVERYTHING to God? Every Sunday, do you worship God in Spirit and in Truth? Do you pray continuously? Do you reflect on yourself to make sure you are doing these things? Do you have someone you are accountable too?

Today, let us this song inspire you to give more of yourself to Him, and see what God will do. Selah!

Photo provided by unsplash-logonatasha tirtabrata

Speak To My Heart

In this time as we are praying to God and asking Him for guidance for the ministry, let us also reflect that desire for direction in our worship lives. God sent the Holy Spirit to be our guide and our comforter after Jesus’ departure from earth, so let us lean on Him. The song says:

“Speak to my heart, Lord, give me your holy word
If I can hear from You, then I’ll know what to do
I won’t go on, I’ll never go on my own
Just let Your spirit guide and let Your word abide”

John 16:13 says “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.”

Hold on to these promises in your time of prayer, whether it be for the ministry or your personal circumstance, and know that God is in control. Amen.

Photo provided by sydney Rae

Something About the Name Jesus

FIRST: PLEASE WATCH THE ENTIRE VIDEO!

This worship experience is unique. The message behind their movements is that the Devil will always try to disrupt your praise because he knows how powerful it is. So why do we give him ammunition by not praising God in Spirit and in Truth? I hope this video inspires you this morning to take a few extra minutes to give God what he deserves. Shout to Him to break the chains in your life. Realize that there is nothing more powerful than the name of Jesus and that He is all you need in this life. Nothing else matters except serving God and sharing His message of love and salvation.

Your problems cannot beat God. So stop worrying, and praise Him! In the name of Jesus, every knee shall bow, and every tongue shall confess, that He is Lord!

Photo provided by Jason Betz

King of Glory

Let us never forget in our praise that God is the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords. He is the King of Glory and His majesty reign over everything. Not just the earth, but the heavens and over all of time, from the beginning to the end. This song reminds us not only of God’s great glory but that we are commanded to praise Him always and pray without ceasing. When you think of all the wonders of God, it should be a natural response to worship Him. Sometimes we get to a place where we forget to put God first, but setting aside personal time every day to incorporate worship in your life is a sure way to keep Jesus at the forefront.  Psalm 24 says:

“A Psalm of David.
24 The earth is the Lord’s, and all its fullness,
The world and those who dwell therein.
2 For He has founded it upon the seas,
And established it upon the [a]waters.

3 Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord?
Or who may stand in His holy place?
4 He who has clean hands and a pure heart,
Who has not lifted up his soul to an idol,
Nor sworn deceitfully.
5 He shall receive blessing from the Lord,
And righteousness from the God of his salvation.
6 This is Jacob, the generation of those who seek Him,
Who seek Your face. Selah

7 Lift up your heads, O you gates!
And be lifted up, you everlasting doors!
And the King of glory shall come in.
8 Who is this King of glory?
The Lord strong and mighty,
The Lord mighty in battle.
9 Lift up your heads, O you gates!
Lift up, you everlasting doors!
And the King of glory shall come in.
10 Who is this King of glory?
The Lord of hosts,
He is the King of glory. Selah”

David entreats us to remember that it is he who has clean hands and pure heart, who is not worshipping an idol in God’s place, that is the man who shall ascend to the throne with Jesus. Don’t you want to be in that place? Don’t you want to be of Jacob’s generation? Then let us never forget who God is and always put the King of Glory first. Amen.

Photo provided by frank mckenna

Praise Him

We all know David was a serious worshipper. David said:
“Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice,
and let them say among the nations, “The Lord reigns!”
Let the sea roar, and all that fills it;
let the field exult, and everything in it!
Then shall the trees of the forest sing for joy
before the Lord, for he comes to judge the earth.
Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
for his steadfast love endures forever!” – I Chronicles 16-31-34

Let us take moments today to remember the greatness of God, and praise Him for all that He is to us. Thank you, God for being our provider, for being with us, for being our shelter, for being our peace. Thank you, Jesus, for being our salvation! Let us take time today and praise Him as the song says, in spirit and in truth. Selah!

Again and Again and Again

First, take a minute to LISTEN TO THIS ENTIRE SONG!

When has God never been there for you? Even when you think you are alone, God is there! And He will solve all your problems. He will heal all your pain. He has the PERFECT plan for your life. When are you going to praise God like you REALLY trust Him? When are you going to truly give up on trying to things on your own and allow God to be GOD in your life? I mean, when are you going to let Him be first and foremost, let Him guide you and take care of you and let the endless depth of His love pour over you? Stop worrying and praise the King of kings! He is the Lord of lords! He is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end.

Psalm 113 “Praise ye the Lord. Praise, O ye servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord.
2 Blessed be the name of the Lord from this time forth and for evermore.
3 From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the Lord’s name is to be praised.
4 The Lord is high above all nations, and his glory above the heavens.
5 Who is like unto the Lord our God, who dwelleth on high,
6 Who humbleth himself to behold the things that are in heaven, and in the earth!
7 He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth the needy out of the dunghill;
8 That he may set him with princes, even with the princes of his people.
9 He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the Lord.”

AND IF HE DID IT BEFORE, HE WILL DO IT AGAIN! That difficult thing you are going through? GIVE IT UP TO GOD!! LET HIM HANDLE IT! Be empowered! Get up and praise Him now! Selah.

He’s faithful God
He’s an on-time God
He’s a healing God
You will come through once again!
Just in the nick of time!
Satan is defeated!
You WILL come through once again!

He’s a wonder, He’s a wonder! He’s a mighty God!

Photo provided by unsplash-logoJessica Felicio

The Day of Pentecost

Welcome to Summer! In Bible study we have been discussing the book of Acts. Today we discuss the Day of Pentecost. What happened at Pentecost in the Bible? How does it relate to Christians today? Read Acts II.

Starting in Acts II, we read an account of the Holy Spirit coming upon the believers at Pentecost. This is in Jerusalem after Jesus has ascended to Heaven to be with God post-crucifixion and after the disciples are reaffirmed in their mission for the Kingdom of God. The Day of Pentecost signifies the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the disciples and we see Peter acknowledge the fulfillment of prophecy from Joel:

17 “‘In the last days, God says,
    I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
    your young men will see visions,
    your old men will dream dreams.
18 Even on my servants, both men and women,
    I will pour out my Spirit in those days,
    and they will prophesy.

Before Jesus ascended to Heaven, He spoke to the believers about being baptized in the Holy Spirit and the significance. This spectacular event not only signified the pouring out of the Holy Spirit on the disciples and followers of Christ Jesus, but it signified the birth of the new church. Peter spoke a sermon over a crowd of thousands in Jerusalem, converting 3,000 people to Christianity from many nations and backgrounds. From that day on, the revived church began and the good news of the Gospel of Salvation was being spread.

Acts II: 42-47The Fellowship of the Believers: 42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.”

God used the Day of Pentecost as a revival for the Kingdom of God after the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Ever since that day, believers have been working in as servants of God to spread the message of the gospel to all who have ears to hear with a mission of saving as many people as possible. They met daily fellowship and talk about the goodness of God to those who had yet to hear.

God’s promise is that all people will have heard the good news of Salvation before the second coming of Jesus Christ, and the Day of Pentecost signifies a call to action for all believers to spread to gospel of Jesus: “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16. The mission began at Pentecost and continues with all of us who have given our lives to God today. It is our calling and the will of God that we use our gifts and the direction of the Holy Spirit to spread the message of love and salvation to all who are lost.

Prayer: Father, allow me to be used by You to fulfill the mission of Jesus Christ. Allow the love, grace, and mercy that You have shown me give me the ability to show a lost soul the way to Jesus Christ. Transform my heart and fill my heart with the compassion of the disciples and believers at Pentecost. Allow the Holy Spirit to lead me to those who need to hear about You, and give me the boldness and confidence to share Your gift with the world. Amen.

Photo provided by unsplash-logoSunyu

Man of Faith: Abraham

Happy Father’s Day! Today we discuss Abraham, the father of all nations and a true man of faith.

Abraham is the man who took his son Isaac on a mountain as a sacrifice to God.
Abraham is a man who started out as Abram, who believed in God but was still unsure of his calling.

We are the descendants of Abraham, the father of all nations. We’ll look at Abraham’s life and learn from what God spoke to him. Today we’re going to talk about TRUST.

God’s call is a call to trust.

Proverbs 3:5 “Trust the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.”

Abram’s journey to becoming Abraham in the Bible reveals a man who was obedient but struggling with depending completely on God. It is fascinating to think that the same man who lied to protect himself would end up taking his only son to serve as a sacrifice to the Lord. Abraham’s overall growth is a journey we all face, to lean not on our own understanding but to depend completely on the direction of God and the Holy Spirit.

Abraham’s growth reveals man who learned to trust along with his obedience.

God established his covenant with Abram, changing his identity to align with the calling that is on his life which is signified by the change in his name from ‘exalted father’ to ‘father of many’ (Abraham).

Genesis 12:2-3 “I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” 

God uses people He calls to fulfill His promise.

God’s promise was fulfilled through the birth of Abraham’s eight sons, and nations would be forthcoming that would lead to the birth of Jesus Christ. God accomplished this through His servant Abram who He called, just like He has called and chosen each one of us to fulfill a promise and purpose in our own lives that will impact the Kingdom of God.

Prayer: Father, let my faith be made strong in mt weakness and just as You established Your covenant with Abraham who struggled with trust, establish Your will with me that I may fulfill the purpose You have designed for my life. Teach me to trust in You and learn to lean not on my own understanding, but instead follow Your guidance and direction, and be obedient to Your word. In the name of Jesus I pray, Amen.

Photo provided by unsplash-logoAaron Burden