Tag Archives: Church

Come, Ye Blessed Of My Father

If Jesus Christ showed up in your life today, at your church, job, or neighborhood, would you recognize him?

Would he stand out?

When he came the first time, he was of no reputation.  He didn’t stand out.

He didn’t hand out business cards.

He didn’t dress like a wealthy man.

“But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” Philippians 2:7-8

Would you notice him?

Would he look like the perfect gift to you?

Would you see the treasure that is in him?

Or would you ignore him?

If he asked for a drink of water from your water bottle, would you freely offer it to him?

If he asked you for money, would you walk on by or would you reach into your pocket and give him some dollar bills?

If he had no where to go, would you buy him a hotel room for the night? Or would you invite him to stay at your home on your couch for a night or a week or indefinately?

If he didn’t look dressed for church, or the office, or presentable to go to dinner, would you sit next to him?

Would you avoid him or try to prevent him from sitting in the most desired seat, where the wealthy in your community, or church, or the most esteemed in your job or neighborhood sit?  Would you willingly give him your seat?

Would you stop him from walking to the front of the church and taking the microphone to read the scriptures out loud?  Would you stop him from speaking from the pulpit, or leading the church in singing?

If he tried to share his gifts and talents would you let him?  Would you have eyes to see the perfect gift of God?

Would you have room in YOUR ministry for him?

Would you pass over his gifts, would your mind be clouded by his appearance and lack of degrees and fame?  Would you prevent him from handling the offering plate, or greeting others at the door, or even sitting up front in a noticable seat?

If he tried to speak up and tell you that he must share his gifts anyway possible, would you let him?  Or would you let him know he is not a good fit for your church, let him know you will pray for him, and wish him luck to move on and find a church he is a “better fit” for?

Do you even know the voice of the master?

“Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” Revelation 3:20

Would you recognize him?

Would you recognize someone he sent in his place?

“Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I was hungry, and you gave me meat: I was thirsty, and you gave me drink: I was a stranger, and you took me in: Naked, and you clothed me: I was sick, and you visited me: I was in prison, and you came unto me.

Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when did we see you hungry, and fed you? or thirsty, and gave you drink? When did we see you as a stranger, and took you in? or naked, and clothed you? Or when did we see you sick, or in prison, and came to visit you?

And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, In as much as you have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, you have done it unto me.”   Matthew 25:34-40

 

I pray that each of us can recognize each and every opportunity to be a blessing to those in need, and that we can see Jesus Christ in each person.  I pray we are found worthy and faithful servants, and we will hear those precious eternal words, “Come ye blessed of my Father.”

Be wise and be blessed!

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Praise

Did you know that PRAISE is mentioned in the bible 477 times?   Praise is very important to God.  The bible says that God inhabits the praises of his people.  Imagine that for just a minute.  God inhabits…your praise…

Webster’s dictionary says that inhabit means “to occupy as a place of settled residence” and it means “to live in”.  source

Webster’s dictionary also says that praise is an “expression” and it means “to glorify”; “to esteem”; “to express a favorable judgement, or to commend”; and that it is an expression of “love, thanks, appreciation, respect, in spoken or written form”. source

Praise is God’s home.  Let me say that again, just incase you missed it.  Praise is God’s home.  God dwells in praise. God lives in YOUR expression of praise whether you vocalize it (speak, sing, shout, pray, mutter, mumble, groan, hum, etc) or write it out.  How awesome is that ?!

Do you celebrate when you offer praise?  I noticed a key theme in researching the bible about praise.  It should be filled with celebrations!

Praise should include:  shouts of joy, shouts of praise for all that God has done for us, prayer, offerings, lift your hands to God, praise him by dancing, playing instruments, play the harp and the tambourine, trumpets, stringed instruments, and woodwinds, cymbals and clashing cymbals, new songs, thankful heart, celebrate God’s wonderful deeds and victories over evil and enemies, sing songs and praise his name every day and announce “He has saved us”, sing praises to God in every nation of the earth, and so much more.   If you don’t believe me, do a search of the bible’s 477 verses that contain the mention of praise and find out for yourself.

In addition to telling us He lives in our praise, He also offers us a promise.  He will bless us because we obey Him and because we praise Him.

“The Lord will BLESS everyone who PRAISES him and who gladly obeys his teachings”.                      Psalm 112:1

One of the most amazing leaders of praise and worship of the Lord God mentioned in the Bible is King David. David sang, wrote, danced, layed prostrate, prayed, and played instruments in his worship of the Lord.  The bible says that God was pleased with his praise and worship.  Even so much that when others mocked him praising God, they brought a curse upon themself.  His own wife mocked him one time when he sang loudly, clanged cymbals, and danced naked before Lord in public and she was cursed. God was that protective of David’s praise.  Wow!

My dad was a Praise and Worship leader most of his adult life.  I loved growing up watching him lead the assembly of believers in praise.  It was really special to be a part of the congregation singing praises to the Lord with him.  He was so gifted in music and could harmonize in any key.  He died when I was 25 and I cherish those memories of my youth singing with him in church.

I too have served the body of Christ as a Praise and Worship minister.  I joined a Praise team in Kansas City when I was just 14 years old.  I continued participating in church choirs, high school and college choirs, and served on Praise and Worship teams for most of my adult life.  It has been one of my greatest joys in life.  My heart was and is always to lead the assembly of believers into a place of true worship of God as David did. To sing and praise and please God in our worship of who He is.  He is the same yesterday, today, and forever.  He never changes.  His love for us never changes.  His mercies are new every day.  He is the beginning and the end.  The is the creator.  He is the author.  He is the provider.  He is the healer.  He is the king.  He is the warrior.  He is the savior.  He is the deliverer.  He deserves our highest praise everyday that we are blessed to take a breath.

Do you need help getting to a place of praise?  First of all, pray and ask God to help you in your praise of him.  Then spend some time learning about what God says about praise in the scriptures.  You will truly be inspired, and maybe even shocked if you have never praised him before, or if you have been part of a religious culture that has rules and limitations regarding praise.

Get encouraged by the example and testimony of other believers who are offering praise and worship to God…

One of the most amazing Praise and Worship Leaders I have ever witnessed in my lifetime is Rick Pino.  I was blessed to be in the crowd of Christian worshipers in August 2008 at Greenville, SC at a Youth Conference with over 5 Thousand people, both young and old.  That is OVER 5,000!  The songs we sang rang out to the heavens!  He led us for hours in the most sincere atmosphere of praise of Father God that I have ever experienced in my life.  His genuine worship of God was contagious and everyone caught it.

That must have been what it was like to praise and worship Father God when King David worshipped.  The bible says David was a man after God’s own heart.  God was pleased with David’s worship.

 

TRANSFORM YOUR PRAISE

Do you want an experience of praise and worship like that?  Do you want to be so overcome with praise of God that nothing else matters?  Do you know that if you don’t praise God, that rocks will cry out in your place?  He is that holy and deserving of our highest praise, that all creation including rocks will praise him!  AMAZING!

He longs for our sincere praise.  He longs for our hearts to worship him in spirit and in truth.  He wants to encourage “normal people”, you and me, to live supernatural lives, to receive supernatural blessings, and experience supernatural praise and worship of the only supernatural God.

My three favorite songs from Rick Pino’s albums I purchased back in 2008 at the youth conference are “Mighty Warrior” , “We Have The Best Dad” and “I Can Hear The Sound”.  I love these songs!  They truly transform your perspective and your praise.

Mighty Warrior: The Lord is with you mighty warrior, so rise, mount up, mount up on the wings of eagles, mount up, so rise, the Lord is with you mighty warrior”.

We Have The Best Dad: We have the best dad in the whole world!

I Can Hear Can Hear The Sound: This song is absolutely one of my most favorites. He sings in this song that he “can hear the sound of the river coming down.. its coming down…your sons and daughters will prophesy…it satisfies…come and drink from the rock…I can hear the sound.”

ABBA:  Abba, I belong to you…you wont leave us as orphans…Abba…I belong to you…

 

PIONEER: I love this song called Pioneer.   “There is a wilderness calling you, and you are the pioneer to keep pressing forward, only a fire (of the Lord) goes before you, your own frontier, you are a pioneer.”

 

You and I are pioneers on the path of life, telling those in our circle of influence (our wilderness) about God.  And if we don’t cry out with praise to God, the rocks will do it in our place.  Yikes!  I don’t want a rock to do what I was created to do!  God longs for me and for you to praise him.  He longs to dwell with us in our praise.

Are you ready?

When you transform your praise, and worship in spirit and in truth, you please the Father, He will dwell with you, He will bless you, and your life will be transformed through your expression of praise.

Give praise a try.  Lift your hands, lift your heart, celebrate, pray, worship the only true living God, and sing out…”Abba, I belong to you…”

 

 

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