Heart That God Desires

Profound Respect for God;
Understanding Fully that He is God;
Responsive to His Touch
God desires a heart that fears Him which will lead me to worship Him with an awe-filled reverence and profound respect. God desires for me to keep all His commandments so that it may go well with me and with my children forever (Deuteronomy 5:29). This is the type of heart that I desire in me to worship Him with all of me.
God desires to change me from the inside out to know Him, understanding fully that He is Lord; I will be His and He will be my God. I will return to Him with my all of me (Jeremiah 24:7). I know that this is why David was a man after God’s own heart for though he sinned, he always returned to God with his whole heart. I, too, want to want others to see me that same way. When I fall short, I pray that I will return to God with my whole heart.
God has given me a new one and put a new spirit within me. He has taken my heart of stone and given me one of flesh, that is responsive to His touch, that I may walk in His statutes and keep His commandments and obey them (Ezekiel 11:19-20). Therefore, He has made me new and given me a heart that desires to serve, love, and worship Him. When I find myself in a foul mood, I need to return to Him and ask Him to renew a steadfast spirit within me.
God alone has the power to change any heart. What is the condition of your heart today?
My Prayer: Lord God, You alone have the power to change my heart. Forgive me, Lord, when I stray or when my heart has become one of stone. Renew a steadfast spirit within me. Amen.
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A Time is Coming!

The time is now to worship God. I had the honor of participating in a Passion play in March. It started off with the Samaritan woman at the well. I particularly like the passage of John chapter 4 where Jesus is talking to her about worship (4:19-24). He tells her that a time is coming when God will be worshiped neither on the mountain nor in Jerusalem. The Amplified Version emphasizes that in spirit is from the heart, the inner self. I think of it as heartfelt worship for who He is, what He has done, and what He is yet to do. It is not going to matter too much about form but more as a matter of the heart. God knows my heart, therefore, He knows when I worship Him in spirit and in truth.
One of the greatest weapons that Satan has is our battle over how others choose to worship. It is a driving wedge in congregations and church organizations. Who am I to judge how another chooses to worship as long as they are worshiping in truth according to God’s word? Jesus came to testify to the truth. He is the truth, the way, and the life. If people want to use praise music and raise their hands then they should be allowed that freedom. God wants our hearts to be filled with His praise and thanksgiving. Do not allow Satan to rob us of our true worship and the glory that it brings God. I need to focus on the condition of my heart and not be concerned over someone else. I can only pray for them. I cannot persuade them. I choose not to condemn someone if they want traditional hymns and liturgy. It may be right for them but for me my heart sings for God with both traditional hymns and contemporary praise music. The time has come to worship God for who He is.
One of my favorite phrase is, “The heart of the matter is a matter of the heart.” It is what is in my heart when I go to worship that is important. Humility is admitting to myself that in the face of God I am worthless but because of Christ I live. Therefore, I ask God to search my heart, to test me and know my anxious thoughts; and see if there is any wicked or hurtful way in me. Lead me, Lord in the everlasting way (Psalm 139:23-24). 
How is your worship? Have you found yourself to be critical of how someone else chooses to worship God? 
I leave you with Psalm 139:1-3;
O Lord, you have searched me [thoroughly] and have known me.

You know when I sit down and when I rise up [my entire life, everything I do];
You understand my thought from afar.

You scrutinize my path and my lying down,
And You are intimately acquainted with all my ways.
 
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God is Sovereign; In Control

In Light of Today’s Political Environment
This Remains True & Always Will Be!
Sovereign  means supreme; preeminent; indisputable. It also means greatest in degree; utmost or extreme. Therefore, God is supreme; preeminent; indisputable; greatest in degree and utmost. He is above all of the current affairs of man. I am reminded of Daniel 2:20b-22;
“Blessed be the name of God forever and ever,
to whom belong wisdom and might.
21 He changes times and seasons;
He removes kings and sets up kings; 
He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding;
22 He reveals deep and hidden things;
He knows what is in the darkness,
and the light dwells with Him.”
God alone knows the outcome of our elections and He has a purpose in it. I may not like the choices set before me but as a believer it is my duty, privilege, and honor to cast my vote. God knows my future and I know that this is not my home. At the appointed time, I will go to be with Him in heaven but for now, I am giving a task to be His ambassador to take forth the message of reconciliation. His grace is enough for me. Yet, I too often forget and begin to fret. Reading my Bible and taking time to spend time with God, He so easily reminds me that HE is in control.
My Prayer: Dear Sovereign Lord, You have the power to remove kings and set up kings. You are in control and I am to trust You in whatever comes my way. You alone know what the future holds and I am to be secure in that knowledge. Forgive me Father when I question You. I ask for wisdom to understand what is taking place. Amen.  
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Christ’s Ambassador(?)

What Does It Mean to be His Ambassador?
As His ambassador, God so desires to make His appeal through me (paraphrase of 2 Corinthians 5:15-20). I no longer live for myself but for Christ, therefore, I am to regard no one according to worldly standards and values. In Christ, I have been made new and the old is gone. Having been reconciled to God through Christ and made new by the Holy Spirit, I have been entrusted with the message of reconciliation.
Ambassador – an authorized messenger or representative. In the Bible, 2 Corinthians 5:20, ambassadors are those appointed by God to declare His will. An interesting note:To do injury to an ambassador was to insult the King who sent him. Therefore, God is insulted when His ambassadors are injured.
I am to forget the former things and not dwell on the past for God is making things new (Isaiah 16:18). In doing so, I can forget what is behind me and strain toward what is ahead pressing on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus (Philippians 3:13b-14).
Now I must examine myself as to how I am living my life as His ambassador.
Am I stuck in the past?
Have I regarded others according to worldly standards and views? 
How am I handling His message of reconciliation?
Am I straining toward what is ahead and pressing on to win the prize?
I must be honest and say that I am not doing a very good job at it but I know that with His help I can do better and strive to be His ambassador and carry forth His message of reconciliation.
My Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, I admit that I am not doing a good job as Your ambassador. I struggle to refrain from using worldly standards and values when regarding others. I do not handle Your message of reconciliation properly. Forgive me Lord. Cause me to be a better ambassador and give me grace to handle Your message. Amen.
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Ways to Worship God Daily

Looking at the Psalms
Psalm 29,66,95, & 96
 29:2, Ascribe to the LORD the glory due His name; worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness.  
There is a footnote that holiness could also be holy attire. This could be a reason that we dress so formerly for Sunday worship. But could we not also be mindful of what we wear on a daily basis out of respect for God and for ourselves? There many ways to worship Him on a daily basis.
 
 66:4, All the earth worships You and sings praises to You; they sing praises to Your name.
 We do sing Him praises when we gather to worship on Sunday but do we sing Him praises when we are not in church? Could we not incorporate some praise music into our daily lives? 
95:1-2, 6, Oh come, let us sing to the LORD; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation! Let us come into His presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to Him with songs of praise! … Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker!
Make a joyful noise? When was the last time you made a joyful noise unto the Lord? Bowing down is a matter of the heart and humbling oneself before our God. It signifies surrender.
96:3-4, Declare His glory among the nations, His marvelous works among all the peoples! For great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; He is to be feared above all gods.
When was the last time you shared your God story with someone and told them of the marvelous things that He has done in Your life? For me it has been amazing to share my God story with others. It has been healing, uplifting, and I have been a blessing to someone else.
Long and short of it is to tell of His marvelous works, make a joyful noise unto the Lord, and sing praises unto His name. This is just s few ways to worship His majesty. We honor Him in all we that do by remembering that it is in doing unto others and sharing Him with those we know that brings Him honor. If we live a life that is God honoring then others will want what we have.
May your life bring Him honor and thus be worshiping Him. In what ways can you worship God on a daily basis?
My Prayer: Lord God, may all that I say and do bring honor to Your Holy Name. Forgive me, Father, when my actions do not bring You honor. Amen.
 
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Study How God was Worshiped

In The Old Testament
Examples from
 Genesis, Exodus, Judges, 2 Samuel, 2 Chronicles
 
As I have been putting together a Bible study on worship, I have come across some really interesting people and times of worship in the Bible. They include people like Abraham’s servant, Moses, Gideon, David, and corporate worship of Israel. I particularly found one time that David worshiped God to be of interest because it came after a loss. You can find this story in 2 Samuel 12. Read 2 Chronicles 29 and learn how Israel worshiped together and why. I have learned that God is to be worshiped at all times and this includes times of despair or tragedy. Worship includes song and dance as well as cleanliness and proper attire.
 
In the study I am working on, I ask readers to look at what led people to worship and how they worshiped. Worship is more than just praise. There are many times in my life that have led me to worship Him. He has kept me from harm and has blessed me in so many ways. I am blessed to be called out to speak, to write a Bible study, and write this blog. He keeps me humble for I know that none of this would be possible without Him. Apart from Him, I can do nothing of significance for His kingdom, yet, with Him all things are possible. You see, I want to learn how I can worship the Lord anew. I am sharing some of what I have been working on so that you, too, might desire to worship Him anew.
 
Psalm 29:1-2
Ascribe to the Lord, O heavenly beings,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;
worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness.
 
 
My Prayer: Almighty God, You alone are worthy of all worship & praise. I do desire to worship You anew. Amen.
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Worship Hinges on Honor

Give God Honor For
Who He is, What He has done,
& What He has yet to do.
 
I have come to realize that I do not worship God enough for the above reasons. Worship is more than just praise. It is honoring Him in all that I purpose to do. God is worthy of my respect and esteem. After all He created the heavens and the earth and has given me life.
Giving Him honor for who He is; Lord God Creator of all that is and was and ever shall be, sovereign Lord full of grace and truth, and a God of steadfast love. By being a good steward of His creation and giving Him His rightful place in my life.
Giving Him respect for what He has done; rescued me from death and the devil through Jesus’ death and resurrection and the many other blessing in my life such as a son and my heart’s desire in my second marriage with grown children whom I have come to love with all my heart. By telling others of His goodness and grace, and loving my family & friends as well as in singing praise songs.
Giving Him Honor for what He has yet to do; prayers waiting for God’s timing to be answered and for the return of Jesus to bring God’s kingdom. By continuing to stay in His word, attending corporate worship, and giving to those who serve His Name.
How can you give God honor in your life?
My prayer: Dear God in heaven, hallowed be Your name. May all I do and say bring You glory and honor. Help me to at the end of my day to look and see where I did or didn’t give You honor and seek Your forgiveness. Amen.
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