Sacred Spaces- September 22, 2020

Silence, Stillness and Centering before God (2 Minutes)

Scripture Reading & Devotional:

…he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. —1 John 4:4 

As a follower of Jesus Christ, God Himself takes up residence in you. You have nothing to fear for the One who is all powerful, all wise, and understands everything, is with you and in you. But let’s look for a moment at what it says before and after this part of the verse that we are memorizing this week.

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 3 and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already. 4 Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. 5 They are from the world; therefore they speak from the world, and the world listens to them. 6 We are from God. Whoever knows God listens to us; whoever is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error.  —1 John 4:1-6 

There are many spirits in this world and they speak through people, in books and media. They expose us to ideas, thoughts, and beliefs that cause us to think things or even believe things that are not the TRUTH. Just because a spirit speaks to us, should we believe what it says? We are to test the spirits to see first and foremost where this spirit is from. According to this text, there is one test that must be asked to see if the words are from God. That question is, “What does it say about Jesus?”  The answer that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is indeed from God.

Should we fear these spirits that bring deception and lies? No! If you have confessed Jesus as Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead on the third day and that He is seated in the heavenly place at the right hand of God the Father, then you have OVERCOME the spirits of the world and He, the Spirit of the Living God, has taken up residence in you–HE is GREATER than he who is in the world.

Because of Jesus’ work on the cross and in us, we can confidently say that we are from God and we have fellowship with others who are from God.

But this verse is not primarily about us. It is about God. He who is in us is the One who is greater. The focus is not on us but on Him, the truly “Greater One.”  There is no substitute for our God. He is the awesome One, there is no one who compares to Him. He is God and there is no other. He is the One that has all power over the one who takes up residence in this world. We have nothing to fear when we remember who God is and that He is in us.

This world is sometimes very confusing. But this world is temporary and we are only passing through it. The One who is in us is the Eternal One and He will win the final battle. So even when people won’t listen to us, someday they will know that what we have said about Jesus is true and He is greater than the one they chose to follow. Our prayer is that they, our friends and our enemies, will come to realize that there are opposing spirits in the world trying to get their attention, but there is One greater who is from God and secures our victory. May they come to know the Greater One that can live in them and is the Spirit of Truth.

Question to consider: Which word or phrase stands out to you. What might God be saying to you?)

1. If He who is in us is truly greater than he that is in this world what do we have to fear?
2. Name some of the great characteristics of our God. Write them down on a piece of paper or a card and post it on your refrigerator, or carry it with you today.

Prayer:  Conclude with Silence (5 Minutes)

The Our Father (slowly pray this)
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever, Amen.

 

 

Weekend Worship- September 20, 2020 / Culto de fin de semana- 20 de septiembre de 2020

Scripture Reading/Lectura bíblica:  Philippians 1:21-30 / Filipenses 1:21-30

27 Pase lo que pase, compórtense de una manera digna del evangelio de Cristo. De este modo, ya sea que vaya a verlos o que, estando ausente, solo tenga noticias de ustedes, sabré que siguen firmes en un mismo propósito, luchando unánimes por la fe del evangelio 28 y sin temor alguno a sus adversarios, lo cual es para ellos señal de destrucción. Para ustedes, en cambio, es señal de salvación, y esto proviene de Dios. 29 Porque a ustedes se les ha concedido no solo creer en Cristo, sino también sufrir por él, 30 pues sostienen la misma lucha que antes me vieron sostener, y que ahora saben que sigo sosteniendo.

Confession/Confesión:

We search for joy and meaning in our world. We look for it in our careers, our social circles, and along many of our paths in life. But these things are often fleeting, and our search is unsustainable. God forgive us for not seeking Your kingdom first. Remove those blinders that prevent us from seeing what You are doing in the world and in our lives. Help us to have our eyes focused only on You. May we seek the ultimate treasure which is Your salvation. Help us to trust that we are a forgiven people, who find joy in the assurance that we are Yours. In Jesus’ Name we pray, Amen.

Buscamos alegría y significado en nuestro mundo. Lo buscamos en nuestras carreras, en nuestros círculos sociales y en muchos de nuestros caminos en la vida. Pero estas cosas suelen ser fugaces y nuestra búsqueda es insostenible. Dios perdónanos por no buscar tu reino primero. Quita esas anteojeras que nos impiden ver lo que estás haciendo en el mundo y en nuestras vidas. Ayúdanos a tener nuestros ojos enfocados solo en ti. Que busquemos el tesoro supremo que es Tu salvación. Ayúdanos a confiar en que somos un pueblo perdonado, que encontramos gozo en la seguridad de que somos Tuyos. En el Nombre de Jesús oramos, Amén.

Pause for 2 Minutes of Silence/ Pausa por 2 minutos de silencio

 

 

 

A43: The Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost, Year A (2020) from A Sermon for Every Sunday on Vimeo.

 

Pause for 1 Minute of Silence/ Pausa por 1 minuto de silencio

The Our Father (slowly pray this)/El Padre Nuestro (reza lentamente esto)

Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever, Amen.

Padre nuestro que estás en los cielos, santificado sea tu nombre. Venga tu reino, Hágase tu voluntad en la tierra, como en el cielo. Danos hoy nuestro pan de cada día. Y perdona nuestras ofensas, como perdonamos a los que nos ofenden. Y no nos dejes caer en la tentación, sino líbranos del maligno. Para ti es el reino, el poder y la gloria para siempre, Amén.

Espacios Sagrados 17 de septiembre de 2020

Silencio, quietud y centrado ante Dios (2 minutos)

Lectura bíblica y devocional:

El Salmo 84 fue escrito en un momento en que la morada de Dios con Su pueblo estaba en el templo, planeado por el rey David, construido por Salomón, el hijo de David, y ubicado en la ciudad de Jerusalén. El Templo de Salomón fue el centro de la vida espiritual de la nación de Israel y todos los seguidores de Jehová.

El templo era una estructura espectacular de hecho, pero lo que transformó este edificio hecho por el hombre en una potencia sobrenatural fue la gloria de Dios, que llenó el templo después de la oración de dedicación de Salomón.

Tan pronto como Salomón terminó su oración, descendió fuego del cielo y consumió el holocausto y los sacrificios, y la gloria del Señor llenó el templo (2 Crónicas 7: 1).

Al comienzo del Salmo 84, los hijos de Coré están peregrinando a Jerusalén con una canción en la boca. ¿Qué les hizo cantar? ¡El templo y su belleza (Salmo 84: 1)! ¡Seguro que sí! Pero experimentar esa belleza no fue el objetivo de su viaje. Los hijos de Coré cantaron:

Anhela mi alma, sí, desfallece los atrios del SEÑOR; mi corazón y mi carne cantan con gozo al Dios vivo (Salmo 84: 2).

Fue ese anhelo, ese deseo sediento de la presencia de Dios, lo que sostuvo e incluso alimentó su fuerza mientras realizaban su viaje a través del árido Valle de Baca. Cualesquiera que fueran las dificultades de su viaje, fue insignificante porque sabían …

Porque mejor es un día en tus atrios que mil en otros lugares (Salmo 84: 10a).

De verdad … ¿mil? Cogí mi bolígrafo y enumeré algunos de mis mejores días …

los días en que mi esposa dijo “sí” y luego “acepto”
el día en que nació mi primer hijo … y cuatro maravillosos días de adopción después de eso
días preciosos con aquellos que amo que están en la presencia de Jesús en este momento
días felices creciendo en una pequeña granja en el sur de Minnesota con padres increíbles
noches llenas de asombro empapándose de la belleza y la maravilla de las galaxias de arriba
muchos días disfrutando de la belleza de la creación: las majestuosas montañas Rocosas, el Parque Nacional Glacier, el área de canoas de Boundary Waters … y un viaje increíble desde Red Lodge, Montana a través del paso Beartooth hasta la entrada norte del Parque Nacional Yellowstone … solo para nombrar solo un pocos
He tenido algunos días maravillosos … y estoy agradecido con Dios por ellos, sin embargo, este versículo pone esos días en perspectiva. Todos mis mejores días combinados y todos tus mejores días combinados no se compararán con un día en Su presencia.

Se acerca un “único” día y una eternidad en el que experimentaremos

… Las riquezas inconmensurables de su gracia en su bondad para con nosotros en Cristo Jesús (Efesios 2: 7).

Al considerar el pasado glorioso de Dios que habita en el Templo de Salomón y el futuro alucinante de Dios que habita con Su pueblo (Apocalipsis 21: 3), recuerde que somos el templo de Dios debido a la obra suficiente de Jesucristo. . A su muerte, la cortina del templo se rasgó en dos, dándonos acceso directo al Padre a través de Jesús, para que podamos acercarnos con valentía al trono de la gracia.

¡Oh creyente, seamos aquellos de quienes se pueda decir: “Confiamos en el SEÑOR de los ejércitos”!

Porque el SEÑOR Dios es sol y escudo; el SEÑOR concede gracia y honra. No niega nada bueno a los que andan en integridad (Salmo 84:11).

… Mi corazón y mi carne cantan de gozo al Dios vivo (Salmo 84: 2).

Pregunta a considerar: qué palabra o frase se destaca para usted. ¿Qué podría decirte Dios?)

Reflexione sobre la bondad del Señor en sus “mejores” días.
¿Dios es menos bueno en sus días “no tan buenos” o “malos”?
¿Puedes comprender lo que les espera a quienes confían en la suficiencia de Jesús?
¿Estás buscando el trono de la gracia con regularidad?
Lea y considere el Salmo 23: 6, el Salmo 27: 4 y Juan 14: 2-3.

Oración: Concluir con el silencio (5 minutos)

El Padre Nuestro (reza lentamente esto)

Padre nuestro que estás en los cielos, santificado sea tu nombre. Venga tu reino, Hágase tu voluntad en la tierra, como en el cielo. Danos hoy nuestro pan de cada día. Y perdona nuestras ofensas, como perdonamos a los que nos ofenden. Y no nos dejes caer en la tentación, sino líbranos del maligno. Para ti es el reino, el poder y la gloria para siempre, Amén.

Sacred Spaces – September 17, 2020

Silence, Stillness and Centering before God (2 Minutes)

Scripture Reading & Devotional:

For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness. 11For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly. [12O LORD of hosts, blessed is the one who trusts in you!] –Psalm 84:10-12

Psalm 84 was written at a time when the dwelling place of God with His people was in the temple—planned for by King David, built by David’s son Solomon, and located in the city of Jerusalem. Solomon’s Temple was the hub of spiritual life for the nation of Israel and all followers of Jehovah.

The Temple was a spectacular structure indeed, but what transformed this man-made building into a supernatural powerhouse was the glory of God, which filled the Temple after Solomon’s prayer of dedication.

As soon as Solomon finished his prayer, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices, and the glory of the LORD filled the temple (2 Chronicles 7:1).

As Psalm 84 opens, the sons of Korah are making their pilgrimage to Jerusalem with a song in their mouths. What caused them to sing? The Temple and its beauty (Psalm 84:1)! For sure it did! But experiencing that beauty was not the point of their journey. The sons of Korah sang,

My soul longs, yes, faints for the courts of the LORD; my heart and flesh sing for joy to the living God (Psalm 84:2).

It was that longing, that soul-thirsting desire for the presence of God, which sustained and even fueled their strength as they made their journey through the arid Valley of Baca. Whatever the difficulties of their journey, it was insignificant because they knew…

For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere (Psalm 84:10a).

Really…a thousand? I grabbed my pen and listed a few of my top days…

  • the days my wife said “yes,” and then “I do”
  • the day my first son was born…and four wonderful adoption days after that
  • precious days with those I love who are in the presence of Jesus right now
  • joyful days growing up on a small farm in southern Minnesota with incredible parents
  • awed-filled nights soaking in the beauty and wonder of the galaxies above
  • many days enjoying the beauty of creation—the majestic Rocky mountains, Glacier National Park, the Boundary Waters Canoe Area…and an amazing drive from Red Lodge, Montana through the Beartooth Pass into the north entrance of Yellowstone National Park…just to name just a few

I’ve had some great days…and I am thankful to God for them, yet this verse puts those days into perspective. All of my best days combined, and all of your best days combined will not compare to one day in His presence.

A “one” day is coming, and an eternity to follow when we will experience

…the immeasurable riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 2:7).

As you consider the glorious past of God dwelling in Solomon’s Temple, and the mind-blowing future of God dwelling with His people (Revelation 21:3), remember that we are the temple of God because of the all-sufficient work of Jesus Christ. Upon his death, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, giving us direct access to the Father through Jesus, so we can boldly approach the throne of grace.

Oh believer, let us be those of whom it can be said, “We trust in the LORD of hosts”!

For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor. No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly (Psalm 84:11).

…my heart and flesh sing for joy to the living God (Psalm 84:2).

Question to consider: Which word or phrase stands out to you. What might God be saying to you?)

  1. Reflect upon the goodness of the Lord in your “best” days.
  2. Is God any less good in your “not-so-good,” or “bad” days?
  3. Can you fathom what is in store for those trusting in the sufficiency of Jesus?
  4. Are you pursuing the throne of grace regularly?
  5. Read and consider Psalm 23:6, Psalm 27:4, and John 14:2-3.

Prayer:  Conclude with Silence (5 Minutes)

The Our Father (slowly pray this)
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever, Amen.

 

 

SACRED SPACES – SEPTEMBER 15, 2020

Silence, Stillness and Centering before God (2 Minutes)

Scripture Reading & Devotional:

Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of your name; deliver us, and atone for our sins, for your name’s sake! —Psalm 79:9

God’s glory is the sum total of all His infinite perfections. God, being who He is and how He is, by necessity, does all that He does for the glory of His glory. Nothing exists that is more glorious than God’s glory, more precious than God’s glory, nor more deserving of love and praise than God in all His glory. So it makes sense that since God is perfect love, God must love perfectly with perfect love that which is perfectly worthy of perfect devotion, namely God’s glory.

It took me a while to understand the necessity of those conclusions and, admittedly, it took me even longer to grasp the application that truth requires: If God honors and loves and does all He does for the furtherance of His glory, then it is His glory, not me and my need, for which God primarily acts. God is not all about me. He is all about His glory. Take that, O proud ego of mine!

But here’s the glory of it. God’s pursuit of His glory includes me; it includes my spiritual and temporal well-being; it includes my joy! God’s satisfaction in His glory expands to include us and make us pursuers of His glory with Him, so that we might share in His satisfaction in His glory.

Which brings us to Psalm 79:9. Israel has been invaded and Jerusalem is in ruins. The invading army laid waste to the citizenry. Many are dead, their bodies left unburied, food for scavengers.
Israel is the butt of international jokes. God’s anger has been poured out on His wayward, covenant-breaking, faithless people. It is at this point Asaph pours out his plea: “Help us, O God
of our salvation, for the glory of your name; deliver us, and atone for our sins, for your name’s sake!”

The psalmist does not here appeal to God’s love or to His mercy, rather to God’s glory. He appeals to that which is most precious to God and most worthy of God’s attention. He does not base his appeal on himself, his need, his country, or the need of his people. He turns to God, rightly, and pleads for God’s glory. Help us for your glory. Deliver us for your glory. Atone for our sins, for your glory. Inherent in this faithful, desperate prayer is the desire for God to make Himself known as He truly is to those who observe Israel’s plight.

It is right to pray, to intercede for ourselves and for others, but what is the best motive for our requests? God’s glory. It is good to seek the Lord and desire His presence and power in our lives, but to what end? God’s glory! We might be tempted to think that God should act on our behalf on account of His love for us. How much better for us when we arrive at the understanding that there is no greater, nobler, perfect motive for God’s action than God’s glory. When we come to desire what God desires, the earth full of the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, then we are ready to have our prayers for help, deliverance, and forgiveness answered.

“Our Father, who art in heaven, . . . Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven,” for your glory.

Question to consider: Which word or phrase stands out to you. What might God be saying to you?)

  • In this Fighter Verse, the psalmist gives us an example of making God’s glory the focus of his prayer. How would you make God’s glory the focus of your prayers?
  • Does the knowledge of God’s love for His glory change your motivation in loving others and doing good? How?
  • Seeing in Scripture that God acts for the sake of the glory of His name, is your joy and trust in Him increased?

Prayer:  Conclude with Silence (5 Minutes)

The Our Father (slowly pray this)
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever, Amen.

 

Weekend Worship- September 13, 2020 / Culto de fin de semana- 13 de septiembre de 2020

Scripture Reading/Lectura bíblica: Matthew 18:15-20/ Mateo 18:15-20

15 “If your brother or sister[a] sins,[b] go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. 16 But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’[c] 17 If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.

18 “Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be[d] bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be[e] loosed in heaven.

19 “Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.”


15 »Si tu hermano peca contra ti,[a] ve a solas con él y hazle ver su falta. Si te hace caso, has ganado a tu hermano. 16 Pero, si no, lleva contigo a uno o dos más, para que “todo asunto se resuelva mediante el testimonio de dos o tres testigos”.[b] 17 Si se niega a hacerles caso a ellos, díselo a la iglesia; y, si incluso a la iglesia no le hace caso, trátalo como si fuera un incrédulo o un renegado.[c]

18 »Les aseguro que todo lo que ustedes aten en la tierra quedará atado en el cielo, y todo lo que desaten en la tierra quedará desatado en el cielo.

19 »Además les digo que, si dos de ustedes en la tierra se ponen de acuerdo sobre cualquier cosa que pidan, les será concedida por mi Padre que está en el cielo. 20 Porque donde dos o tres se reúnen en mi nombre, allí estoy yo en medio de ellos».

 

 

Confession/Confesión:

O God, we think we love You well on many occasions, but the truth is our love for You is diluted and weak. Our hearts are divided, and our passion for Your Kingdom half-hearted. Our trust in You seems pure only for brief moments. Our affections are drawn away too quickly, and our devotion to You dies far too easily. Forgive us. In Your deep mercy, rekindle our love for You as we see anew Jesus’ love for us. In His name we pray. Amen.

Oh Dios, pensamos que te amamos bien en muchas ocasiones, pero la verdad es que nuestro amor por Ti está diluido y débil. Nuestros corazones están divididos y nuestra pasión por Tu Reino es poco entusiasta. Nuestra confianza en ti parece pura solo por breves momentos. Nuestros afectos se alejan demasiado rápido y nuestra devoción por Ti muere con demasiada facilidad. Perdónanos. En tu profunda misericordia, reaviva nuestro amor por ti al ver de nuevo el amor de Jesús por nosotros. En su nombre oramos. Amén.

Pause for 2 Minutes of Silence/ Pausa por 2 minutos de silencio

Pause for 1 Minute of Silence/ Pausa por 1 minuto de silencio

The Our Father (slowly pray this)/El Padre Nuestro (reza lentamente esto)

Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever, Amen.

Padre nuestro que estás en los cielos, santificado sea tu nombre. Venga tu reino, Hágase tu voluntad en la tierra, como en el cielo. Danos hoy nuestro pan de cada día. Y perdona nuestras ofensas, como perdonamos a los que nos ofenden. Y no nos dejes caer en la tentación, sino líbranos del maligno. Para ti es el reino, el poder y la gloria para siempre, Amén.

Sacred Spaces – September 10, 2020

Silence, Stillness and Centering before God (2 Minutes)

Scripture Reading & Devotional:

But godliness with contentment is great gain, 7for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world.—1 Timothy 6:6-7

This verse refers to the love of money being the root of all kinds of evil. At the heart of wanting and loving money more than God is unbelief. There is no godliness with contentment in this world apart from the saving sacrifice of Christ and obedience to the teaching that accords with godliness.

Matthew Henry comments: “Money of itself answers nothing; it will neither feed nor clothe; but, as it is the instrument of commerce, it answers all the occasions of this present life. What is to be had maybe had for money. But it answers nothing to the soul; it will not procure the pardon of sin, the favor of God, the peace of conscience; the soul, as it is not redeemed, so it is not maintained, with corruptible things as silver and gold.”

The Bible says: “You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions” (James 4:2b-3). While our souls are regenerate, our flesh is not. Therefore, my desires are sin-tainted. Jesus alone accomplished a life of pure desire and motive: the will of His Father.

Imagine what life in this day would be like if there was absolute trust in the Lord for everything needed and all our heart longings were according to His perfect will and commands? One day “the peace of God which surpasses all understanding” (Phil. 4:27) will be everlasting and without fleshly struggle. That promise gives hope and assurance of what will be when we are with our Lord face to face.

For now, true godliness with contentment is only possible when we seek God with our whole heart, mind, and soul and love Him above all else. Let’s pray to flee from sin and the love of money, cling to Jesus and the Word, trust the Holy Spirit to counsel, and be content with our lot in life. Let’s encourage one another with grateful hearts to “run with endurance the race that is set before us” (Heb. 12: 1). Let’s heed the wise words of Paul to his young charge, Timothy, and remember that “naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return” (Job 1:21).

May we use and enjoy the spiritual and material gifts we have been given to further the Kingdom work of our Father who is the great provider of all things.

Question to consider: Which word or phrase stands out to you. What might God be saying to you?)

1. What is the “great gain” referred to in this text?
2. What do I treasure and what attitudes need to change?
3. Am I willing to memorize and burn this message into my heart?

Prayer:  Conclude with Silence (5 Minutes)

The smile of the Father shines on me – I am approved of; [i]

I have the mind of Christ – I have important things to say; [ii]

Upon me is the anointing of the Holy Spirit – I am empowered. [iii]

 

Jesus is my Lord and Savior and I dwell in his Kingdom of the Heavens; [iv]

He is my Teacher and I am his beloved apprentice – [v]

I urge people to join me and be with Jesus to become like him. [vi]

 

The Word of God is alive and active and it dwells richly in me [vii]

And the Holy Spirit reminds me of Jesus’ words of truth and grace – [viii]

So I can minister the Word of life to others and it will not return void. [ix]

 

The Spirit that raised Jesus Christ from the dead lives in me [x]

So I do not speak with human wisdom or worldly excitement [xi]

Or rely on my own strength – I count on the power of Almighty God.[xii]

 

As I teach I listen to the voice of God and invite others to listen too; [xiii]

As I serve I join the intercessions of the Holy Spirit, [xiv]

Praying that we all cry out with the Spirit, “Abba Father!  Jesus is Lord!” [xv]

 

The Lord is glorious in all things and captivates me continually;

So I do not draw attention to myself, but to Jesus Christ alone;

Nor do I base my identity on what people say about me.

 

I am Christ’s Ambassador; [xvi]

My citizenship is in heaven’s kingdom; [xvii]

My message is simply: “Follow me as I follow Christ!” [xviii]

 The Our Father (slowly pray this)
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever, Amen.

Sacred Spaces – September 9, 2020

Silence, Stillness and Centering before God (2 Minutes)

Scripture Reading & Devotional:

Out of my distress I called on the LORD; the LORD answered me and set me free. 6The LORD is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me? 7The LORD is on my side as my helper; I shall look in triumph on those who hate me. 8It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in man.
—Psalm 118:5-8

Enemies. Hate. Persecution. Distress . . . tempters at the door, laying siege to hope and joy. What do you do when you are treated unfairly? Where do you run when faced with injustice? Do you fight or despair? Get angry or afraid? Maybe you sink into the slough of despond or valiantly resolve to never be a pushover again.
“Out of my distress, I called on the LORD and he answered me and set me free.”

Psalm 118, a messianic psalm, possibly authored by Moses, points us to the Lord who has conquered every temptation. There is a secret in this psalm that conquers the temptation to respond sinfully to persecution – it is the LORD, our refuge. Run to Him. He is sovereign. His steadfast, covenant love endures forever. We can’t fight this battle alone. He is Savior and will help us. “It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in man.”
The Lord is on our side. Man, by his very nature, breaks trust, but the Lord is trustworthy. He never breaks trust! His name is “Faithful and True” (Revelation 19:11)–turn to Him, take refuge in Him–He will set us free from every destructive scheme of our enemies.

We have earthly enemies–Jesus said the world would hate us because we belong to Him. But He has disarmed our earthly enemies through the cross and has stripped them of any eternal power over us. He Himself has become our refuge of protection from the firestorm of hate in this world.
“The LORD is on my side, I will not fear.
What can man do to me?”

And with the courage He provides us (He has gone before us), He has told us what to do;
“But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” (Matthew 5:44).

The treasure trove of God’s love through Jesus Christ is infinitely deeper and more powerful than hate. He has set us free to respond to our enemies as He responded. We can engage our enemies, love our enemies, and pray for their blessing because our trust is in the Lord who has triumphed through the cross. I once read a story of a little boy who would go hungry at school because his lunch money was daily stolen by the class bully. The boy turned to God, prayed and read his Bible looking for a way to win his enemy. One day, his eyes settled on “if your enemy is hungry, feed him” (Romans 12:20). He showed the Bible verse to his mother and the next day she baked chocolate chip cookies for her son to offer in the name of Jesus to the bully. The bully could not resist the cookies, grabbed a handful and ate them – but he still stole the lunch money. In the days that followed, the bully was given a variety of things to eat from the boy, always with acknowledgement of Jesus, and was eventually won over. He became a friend of the boy, a friend of Jesus, and never stole from anyone at school again.

We also have supernatural enemies–rulers, authorities, cosmic powers over this present darkness, spiritual forces in heavenly places (Ephesians 6). The enemies of the LORD abound, but He intends we rely on His help (“I will ask the Father and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive.” John 14:16-17) – We are in a war not against flesh and blood, but against spiritual powers and authorities. Our help comes through God’s provision of the indwelling Holy Spirit who is working in us to equip us through God’s Word to win every battle, defeat every devious speculation raised up against Him, and take every thought captive to obey Christ.
“The LORD is on my side as my helper;
I shall look in triumph on those who hate me.”

Every Christian was an enemy of God, but now we have been washed, sanctified, justified in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God (1 Corinthians 6:11). We have been made friends through Christ’s victory at the cross. He triumphed over every enemy, including death.

“This [the record of debt, the legal demands against us] he set aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him” (Colossians 2:14-15).

“But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet” (Hebrews 10:12-13).

Whether a person loves or hates the cross of Christ, everyone is ultimately conquered by it, though the culmination of that reality is yet to be revealed. He has told us in His Word about that day – “That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord to glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:10-11).

Christ’s victory is for all those who will seek refuge in Him. “For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life” (Romans 5:10).

“Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good;
for his steadfast love endures forever!” Psalm 118:1

 

Question to consider: Which word or phrase stands out to you. What might God be saying to you?)

1. Read through Psalm 118 looking for evidence of the trinity. Write down what you find.
2. What identifies a person as an enemy of God?
3. Are you praying for your enemies? Make a list of those you are tempted to hate and start praying for them today.
4. Ask God to give you tangible ways to bless someone who persecutes you for the sake of Christ.

Prayer:  Conclude with Silence (5 Minutes)

The smile of the Father shines on me – I am approved of; [i]

I have the mind of Christ – I have important things to say; [ii]

Upon me is the anointing of the Holy Spirit – I am empowered. [iii]

 

Jesus is my Lord and Savior and I dwell in his Kingdom of the Heavens; [iv]

He is my Teacher and I am his beloved apprentice – [v]

I urge people to join me and be with Jesus to become like him. [vi]

 

The Word of God is alive and active and it dwells richly in me [vii]

And the Holy Spirit reminds me of Jesus’ words of truth and grace – [viii]

So I can minister the Word of life to others and it will not return void. [ix]

 

The Spirit that raised Jesus Christ from the dead lives in me [x]

So I do not speak with human wisdom or worldly excitement [xi]

Or rely on my own strength – I count on the power of Almighty God.[xii]

 

As I teach I listen to the voice of God and invite others to listen too; [xiii]

As I serve I join the intercessions of the Holy Spirit, [xiv]

Praying that we all cry out with the Spirit, “Abba Father!  Jesus is Lord!” [xv]

 

The Lord is glorious in all things and captivates me continually;

So I do not draw attention to myself, but to Jesus Christ alone;

Nor do I base my identity on what people say about me.

 

I am Christ’s Ambassador; [xvi]

My citizenship is in heaven’s kingdom; [xvii]

My message is simply: “Follow me as I follow Christ!” [xviii]

The Our Father (slowly pray this)
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever, Amen.

Sacred Spaces – September 8, 2020

Silence, Stillness and Centering before God (2 Minutes)

Scripture Reading & Devotional:

Your way, O God, is holy. What god is great like our God? 14You are the God who works wonders; you have made known your might among the peoples.
—Psalm 77:13-14

Our Fighter Verse this week is found in a psalm of lament where the psalmist is crying to God in his time of trouble. We aren’t told what the nature of his trouble is, but we do see that he is so troubled that he refuses to be comforted (v 2) and cannot speak (v 4). Clearly, he is under great duress!

We would do well, then, to see how he works through his sadness. Asking himself if the Lord will spurn him forever, the psalmist begins to meditate upon God and His amazing works (v 12) as a means of turning his sadness into hope and his sorrow into joy.

Acknowledging God’s perfect holiness, the psalmist asks if there is a god like our God (v 13). Not needing to answer that question, he begins to describe God as one who works wonders, who has made His might known among the peoples (v 14). For the balance of the chapter, then, he recounts what God has faithfully done in the past for His people.

Today, in our times of sadness and despair, in order to renew our hope in God, we would do well to look back at what God has done. Unlike the psalmist, we have the single greatest event in all of redemptive history that we can look back upon—the cross! God’s might was most manifest in the power of Jesus Christ and His atoning death and resurrection. Jesus completed the culminating work in all of redemptive history and we have been given the privilege of living in a time when we can look back on that has already been done.

Therefore, like the psalmist before us, may we look to what our wonder-working God has done through Christ in saving a people for His glory and for their joy. May our hope and confidence in God be like that of Abraham, whose faith grew strong as he was convinced that God was able to do what He had promised (Rom 4:21).

It is instructive to note that at the end of this psalm of lament there is no resolution. For those who are followers of Jesus Christ, we do know what the ultimate resolution will be. Regardless of the plight that God may have ordained for us while on earth, we know that one day we will all be in the presence of the fullness of joy where there are pleasures forevermore (Ps 16:11). Until that day comes, may we all continue to look back upon the mighty and wonderful works of our holy God!

Question to consider: Which word or phrase stands out to you. What might God be saying to you?)

  1. How do you think meditating on God having lead His people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron (v. 20) comforted the psalmist?
  2. How does meditating on what God has done in the past serve to comfort us for the future?
  3. Are you experiencing sadness or lack of hope that meditating on God’s faithful works can help with?
  4. What works of God from the past most encourage you?

Prayer:  Conclude with Silence (5 Minutes)

The Our Father (slowly pray this)
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever, Amen.

Weekend Worship- September 6, 2020 / Culto de fin de semana- 6 de septiembre de 2020

Scripture Reading/Lectura bíblica: 2 Timothy 1:8-1213-18