Make a Joyful Noise

Make a joyful noise unto the Lord;
Praise Him with the joy of your salvation.
Praise Him with the joy of your salvation,
And make a joyful noise,
Make a joyful noise,
Make a joyful noise unto the Lord!

Make a joyful noise unto the Lord;
Praise Him for His every perfect gift.
Praise Him for His every perfect gift,
And make a joyful noise,
Make a joyful noise,
Make a joyful noise unto the Lord!

Make a joyful noise unto the Lord;
Praise Him for His every answer to prayer.
Praise Him for His every answer to prayer,
And make a joyful noise,
Make a joyful noise,
Make a joyful noise unto the Lord!

About This Song:
Trying to identify the various verses from the Psalms that comprise “Make a Joyful Noise” would be like trying find specific grains of sand at the beach.

I did an online Bible search for “joyful noise” since that’s definitely a biblical reference. Just for the heck of it, I did my search in the King James version–the original 1611 one–and found the following verses…

Psalm 66:1
Make a joyful noise unto God, all ye lands:

Psalm 81:1
Sing aloud unto God our strength: make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob.

Psalm 95:1
O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation.

Psalm 95:2
Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.

Psalm 98:4
Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all the earth: make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise.

Psalm 98:6
With trumpets and sound of cornet make a joyful noise before the Lord, the King.

Psalm 100:1
Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.

Thanksgiving is many months away. Nonetheless, what better time than now to “make a joyful noise” of praise to God?

That seems like a no-brainer, doesn’t it? What do you have to make a joyful noise of praise to God about today? How about leaving a comment.

 

     

Links you might be interested in:

Look for me again next Wednesday. Better still, subscribe to receive these weekly posts by email.

Best regards,
Roger

 

 

Posted in Gifts, Joy, Noise, Praise, Prayer, Psalms, Salvation, Thanksgiving | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Only Hope I Have

God’s love and mercy never fail;
They’re fresh as every brand-new day,
Sure as every sunrise.
God helps those who place their trust in Him
He is the only hope I have.

I know how it feels to be punished by the Lord,
Locked in His prison, with no hope for release,
Thrown into such darkness that each day seems like the night,
And choked by the poison of my own bitter thoughts.

Then in my depression, hope returned.

God’s love and mercy never fail;
They’re fresh as every brand-new day,
Sure as every sunrise.
God helps those who place their trust in Him
He is the only hope I have.

About This Song:
The really depressing part of “The Only Hope I Have” is based on Lamentations 3:1-18. I’m including only verses 7-9 here, but take my word for it (better yet, look it up yourself in the Bible), the rest of it is depressing, too…
He has walled me in so I cannot escape; he has weighed me down with chains.
Even when I call out or cry for help, he shuts out my prayer.
He has barred my way with blocks of stone; he has made my paths crooked.
(NIV)

The transition from depression to hopeful comes in Lamentations 3:19-21…
19 I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall.
20 I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me.
21 Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:
(NIV)

When hope comes in this passage, it’s like a blackened sky that fireworks have suddenly brightened like daylight. Here are verses 22-25…
22 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.”
25 The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him,  to the one who seeks him;
(NIV)

All of us go through tough times, and I doubt that many of us have been totally free of depression. Depression can be crippling. Dangerously so at times.

Don’t some of us tend to blame God for the bad things in life?  Although God is big enough to listen to those accusations without growing angry, He’s really not to blame.

The free will God endowed each of us with has resulted in sin, and sin has brought about suffering and death.

But no matter how deep we sink into depression, those of us who’ve become God’s children through faith in Jesus Christ still have hope. If we examine God’s Word closely, we find all kinds of promises God has made to provide for His children.

He may not do it in our time or our choice of ways, but He’s always faithful.

What earthly father fails to provide what’s best for his children? That sometimes means allowing them to suffer the results of bad decisions and wrong words and actions.

Can’t we expect even more from our Heavenly Father and put our hope in Him to fulfill His promises?

 

    

Links you might be interested in:

Look for me again next Wednesday. Better still, subscribe to receive these weekly posts by email.

Best regards,
Roger

 

 

Posted in Depression, God's Promises, God's Provision, Hope, Lamentations, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Special to God Almighty

I am special to God Almighty,
For He made me in His image,
And He always wanted me to be His child.
Long before the start of earth time
God planned my life in detail;
He knew everything I’d ever be and do.

In my mother’s womb God formed me;
He handcrafted all the pieces,
And He made sure each part fit in place just so.
As I grew there in the darkness,
I remained safe in His watch-care
I developed just as God Himself designed.

Now that I’m born and grown up,
I’ve begun to call God ‘Father,’
For I know I’m who I am because I’m His.
God knows all my deepest feelings;
He knows what I will think next.
He knows what I’ll say before one word is formed.

I’m surrounded by things I don’t grasp,
While God understands them clearly.
Can I ever hope to understand the Lord?
Where is there that He can’t find me?
Can the night hide me from His eyes?
What’s more special than His constant love for me?

About This Song:
“As I Come Singing” is based on Psalm 139. If you’re not familiar with it, let me just share that it’s one of pro-Lifers’ key passages–and probably one of abortionists’ most hated.

Here are just a few verses from it in the New International Version. . .

13 For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.

Often when I pray I thank God for making me exactly the way He made me. That’s a lot better than griping about my face or my hair or my height or my weight.

It’s also better than wishing I had the talents this person or that one has.

God intended for me to be the person I am. That should be enough not just to satisfy me, but to make me be proud and make me want to live up to God’s highest expectations of me.

Do you feel that way about yourself?

I’ll be back again next Wednesday.

Best regards,
Roger

 

 

Links you might be interested in:

 

 

 

Posted in Abortion, God's plan, Pro-Life, Psalm 139, Psalms, Satisfaction, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

As You Would Have Other People Do to You

As you would have other people do to you,
So you must do to them.
So you must do to them.

Love your enemies; do good to those who hate you.
Bless those who would curse you,
And pray for those who would abuse you.

How can God’s love reach out through you
If you love just your friends and family?
Even the least of all men
Gives to those who would pay them back.

Love your enemies; ask for nothing in return.
Then they’ll know you are God’s children.
Don’t ask back for what you’ve given them.

Let them see you living by the
Kind of love you’re giving away.
As you would have other people do to you,
So you must do to them.
So you must do to them.

About This Song:
“As You Would Have Other People Do to You” comes from Luke 6:27-28 and 31-35. . .

27 “But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.
31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.

32 “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. 34 And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. 35 But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.
(NIV)

Jesus’ outlook on how to treat other people is quite different from the way we’re too often inclined to do it. Sometimes we’d rather say, “Don’t do to others what you don’t want them to do to you.”

Hmm. But Jesus’ words put a different spin on that. An incredibly more positive one.

Do you love your enemies? I’m happy to say I’ve never had but one or two, but they gave me fits. Being civil to them–much less kind and loving–didn’t come easily.

But you know what I forced myself to do?

I prayed for them. On a regular basis. I didn’t pray for them to change. . .to become more likeable. I simply prayed for God to bless them. I tried to be sincere in praying that. Sometimes I succeeded and sometimes I didn’t.

I’m not sure those people ever became good friends, but my opinion of them changed for the better. Maybe I did learn to love them. At least a little bit.

With a large dose of God’s help.

Is there someone in your life you’d rather not pray for? Check with God. Maybe He wants you to pray for them.


Links you might be interested in:

I’ll be back again next Wednesday.

Best regards,
Roger

 

Roger

Posted in Enemy, Golden Rule, Goodness, Love, Prayer | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

I Can Do All Things

I can do all things,
I can do all things,
Not on my own,
But through Christ who strengthens me.

If I should walk on the water
Or move a mountain to prove my faith,
Such power would accomplish nothing at all
Unless as an act of love.

I can do all things,
I can do all things,
Not on my own,
But through Christ who strengthens me.

If I love the Lord my God,
I’ll love my neighbor as I love myself;
I’ll feed him and I’ll forgive him,
And I’ll turn the other cheek.

I can do all things,
I can do all things,
Not on my own,
But through Christ who strengthens me.

About This Song:
I’ve never been physically strong, but that hasn’t stopped me from doing a number of things I couldn’t have done on my own.

Years ago, in Toowoomba (Queensland), Australia, I refused to let the rough terrain above keep me from climbing Tabletop Mountain to enjoy the sights from the smooth, flat, grass-covered surface at the top. I believe God helped me make that climb. And that’s just one example.

But challenges often require something other than physical strength.

God led me to make several career changes over the years–always to something better than the one before. But making changes is scary…unsettling. I not only couldn’t have found the new positions on my own, I wouldn’t have had the courage to make the change without His help.

“I Can Do All Things” is based on several Scripture passages, including Philippians 4:13…
I can do all this through him who gives me strength. (GNT)

and 1 Corinthians 13:1-3…
1  I may be able to speak the languages of human beings and even of angels, but if I have no love, my speech is no more than a noisy gong or a clanging bell. 2 I may have the gift of inspired preaching; I may have all knowledge and understand all secrets; I may have all the faith needed to move mountains—but if I have no love, I am nothing. 3 I may give away everything I have, and even give up my body to be burned—but if I have no love, this does me no good. (GNT)

And let’s not ignore Mark 12:33…
And you must love God with all your heart and with all your mind and with all your strength; and you must love your neighbor as you love yourself. It is more important to obey these two commandments than to offer on the altar animals and other sacrifices to God. (GNT)

1 Corinthians 13 really emphasizes the importance of love–and the fact that love is the most important thing God gives us and allows us to share with others. I couldn’t agree more.


 

Links you might be interested in:

I’ll be back again next Wednesday.

Best regards,
Roger

Posted in 1 Corinthians 13, Accomplishments, Change, God's Help, Love, Mountains, Strength | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Strength Alone

My strength alone cannot compare
With power God gives to me through prayer.
I draw fresh power both day and night
To walk by faith and not by sight.

My batteries need charging, Lord;
My power’s running low.
My will is bending to itself;
Without You, I can’t go.

My charge has drained since my last prayer
While doing what I would.
Lord, plug me in and fill me up.
Help me do what I should.

My batteries need charging, Lord;
My power’s running low.
My will is bending to itself;
Without You, I can’t go.

About This Song:
God gives each of His beloved human beings a certain amount of physical and mental strength, and some people have more than others. He expects us to use the resources He’s provided us with.

But our resources are limited. Sometimes they run out.

I can’t speak for you, but all too often I don’t have enough strength to face the daily challenges of life on my own. “My Strength Alone” isn’t good enough.

I find that praying for God’s help is like plugging a battery charger into an outlet in order to give run-down batteries a fresh charge. To return them to useful condition. In effect, to give them new life.

Do you find yourself running out of strength sometimes? Are you having difficulties keeping up with the demands of life?

Plug into God’s unlimited resources and let Him provide the strength you need.

 

 

Links you might be interested in:

I’ll be back again next Wednesday.

Best regards,
Roger

Posted in Batteries, Power, Prayer, Recharge, Strength | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Foundation Has Settled

The foundation has settled;
Now let it grow.
We’ve been safe inside our building,
But outside we must go.
Inside, we’re warm and loving,
But outside our love must show.
The foundation has settled.
Let us grow.

About This Song:
Sometime during the early 1980s, the First Baptist Church of Easton (Maryland) celebrated its 25th anniversary. As part of the preparation for the celebration, members submitted theme ideas. “The foundation has settled; now let us grow” won. I took the liberty of writing this song from the winning  theme.

New churches are apt to be vibrant. The members are excited.

But as they settle into a routine, the excitement often diminishes.

So this song–and the theme it’s based on–is a reminder that Christians can’t afford to sit on their laurels. The world outside the church is lost and needs their loving outreach.

 

Links you might be interested in:

I’ll be back again next Wednesday.

Best regards,
Roger

Posted in Anniversary, Church, Easton, Foundation, Growth, Love, MD, Outreach | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment