Matter

All of the dreams that haven’t come true,  (Ps. 38:9, Ps. 119:49, Prov. 13:12)
and all of the hurt that happened to you –  (Jer. 10:19)
it matters, I hope you know it matters…

You felt the pain of a bitter defeat  (Bible verses)
where the weight of the grief is more bitter than sweet –  (Lam. 3:32)
it matters, I’m telling you it matters

to the One Who spoke and set the sun ablaze;  (Gen. 1:14-19, Ps. 8:3)
to the One Who stopped the storm and walked the waves;  (Mark 4:39, Matt. 14:25)
to the One Who took the tree so He could say:  (1 Pet. 2:24, John 15:13, John 10:18)
You matter, I hope you know you matter!  (Matt. 10:29-31)

I know it’s not easy, not saying it’s fair,  (John 16:33)
but close as a prayer, Somebody cares –  (Matt. 28:20, Heb. 13:5, 1 Pet. 5:7)
you’re a treasure, I hope you know you’re treasured!  (Ex. 19:5)

So hold your head high, wait for the dawn;  (Ps. 27:14)
keep hanging on, your sadness will turn into laughter!  (Ps. 126:5-6, Is. 61:3)
Watch it turn into laughter…

Chorus  (Rom 8:31-32)

Let the water spill from your eyes;  (Ps. 56:8, Mark 9:24, Heb. 5:7, 2 Kings 20:5)
let it wash the wounds of those lies…
Oh, let the water spill from your eyes…
All that you are, all that you’ll be –
Someone put the beat in your heart so that you’ll see
you matter…  (Matt. 10:29-31, Is. 43:4)

Chorus

~ Written by:  Luke Smallbone, Joel Smallbone, Seth Mosley
Performed by:  for King & Country ~

Flawless

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wjLlLPZderk

There’s got to be more than going back and forth
from doing right to doing wrong  (Romans 7)
‘cause we were taught that’s who we are…
Come on, get in line right behind me –
you along with everybody
thinking there’s worth in what you do…  (Ephesians 2:8-9)

Then like a Hero Who takes the stage when
we’re on the edge of our seats saying, “It’s too late…”
Well, let me introduce you to amazing grace…

No matter the bumps, no matter the bruises,
no matter the scars;  still the truth is:
the Cross has made, the Cross has made you flawless!

No matter the hurt or how deep the wound is,
no matter the pain;  still the truth is:
the Cross has made, the Cross has made you flawless!

Could it possibly be that we simply can’t believe
that this unconditional kind of love would be enough
to take a filthy wretch like this  (Romans 7:24)
and wrap him up in righteousness?  (2 Corinthians 5:21)
But that’s exactly what He did!

Chorus

Take a breath smile and say:
“Right here, right now, I’m OK, because
the Cross was enough…”

And like a Hero who takes the stage when
we’re on the edge of our seats saying, “It’s too late…”
Well, let me introduce you to grace, grace, God’s grace…

Chorus

No matter what they say or what you think you are,
the day you called His Name He made you flawless!

~ Performed by:  MercyMe
Written by:  Bart Millard, Mike Scheuchzer, Nathan Cochran, Robby Shaffer; Barry Graul; Solomon Olds; David Garcia; Ben Glover ~

Ephesians 2:8-10
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:  Not of works, lest any man should boast.  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”

2 Corinthians 5:17
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature:  old things are passed away;  behold, all things are become new.  And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ… reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them… For He hath made Him to be sin for us, Who knew no sin;  that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.”

John 19:30
“When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, He said, “It is finished“: and He bowed His head, and gave up the ghost.”

Further Scripture reading

Remember Who you belong to!

When you feel like you can’t handle the task and you ask yourself:  “Who’s your Daddy?” You can feel secure – not because of you, but because of Who you belong to.  Remember Who He is, and that you belong to Him:

He is the First and Last, the Beginning and the End.  (Revelation 22:13)  He’s the keeper of creation and the Creator of all.  (Genesis 1:1, John 1:3, 2 Peter 3:7)  He’s the architect of the universe and the Manager of all times.  (Psalms 8:3, 147:4)  He always was, always is, always will be (Hebrews 13:8) – unmoved, unchanged, undefeated and never undone.  He was bruised, but brought healing.  He was pierced, but eases pain.  He was persecuted, but brought freedom.  He was dead and brings life.  He has risen to bring power and He reigns to bring peace.  (Isaiah 53:3-5, 61:1-3)

The world can’t understand Him.  Armies can’t defeat Him.  Schools can’t explain Him.  And leaders… they can’t ignore Him.  Herod couldn’t kill Him;  Nero couldn’t crush Him;  the New Age cannot replace Him, and Oprah cannot explain Him away.

Remind yourself that He is Light; (John 8:12) He is Love; (1 John 4:8) He is longevity and He is the LORD!  (Philippians 2:11)  He is goodness and kindness and faithfulness, and He is God!  (Exodus 34:6) He is holy and righteous, powerful and pure.  (Psalm 145:17, 29:4)  His ways are right, His Word eternal, His Will unchanging, and His Mind is on us!  (Deuteronomy 32:4, John 6:68, Malachi 3:6, Psalm 115:12)  He’s our Saviour, our Guide, our Peace, our Joy, our Comfort, our LORD, and He rules our lives.  (Matthew 18:11, Luke 2:11, Psalm 48:14, Isaiah 9:6, John 15:11, John 14:16, Psalm 103:19)

I serve Him because His bond is love, His yoke is easy, His burden is light, and His goal for us is abundant life.  (Colossians 3:14, Matthew 11:30, John 10:10)  I follow Him because He’s the Wisdom of the wise, the Power of the powerful, the Ancient of Days, the Ruler of rulers, the Leader of all leaders!  (Proverbs 8:12-35, Revelation 7:12, Daniel 7:9, 7:22, John 19:11, Romans 13:1)

His goal is a relationship with me…  (John 3:16, Revelation 3:20, John 15:14)

He’ll never leave you, never forsake you, never mislead you, never forget you, never overlook you, and never cancel your appointment in His appointment Book.  Never!  (Hebrews 13:5, Isaiah 49:16, Jeremiah 29:11, Ephesians 1:6)

When you fall, He’ll lift you up.  When you fail, He’ll forgive you.  When you’re weak, He’s strong.  When you’re lost, He’s your way.  When you’re afraid, He’s your courage.  When you stumble, He will steady you.  When you’re hurt, He’s gonna heal you.  When you’re broken, He will mend you.  When you’re blind, He will lead you.  When you’re hungry, He will feed you.  When you face trials, He is with you!  (Psalm 147:6, Psalm 103:3, 2 Corinthians 12:9-10, John 14:6, Joshua 1:9, Proverbs 3:23, Malachi 4:2, Psalm 34:18, Psalm 23:3, Isaiah 42:16, John 6:51, John 4:10, Matthew 28:20)

When I face persecution, He shields me.  When I face problems, He will comfort me.  When I face loss, He will provide for me.  And when we face death, He will carry us all Home to meet Him!  (Psalm 33:20, Psalm 23:4, Philippians 4:19, Isaiah 40:11, 46:4)

He is everything, for everybody, everywhere, every time, and in every way!  (Ephesians 1:21-23)

He is your God, and THAT is Who you belong to!

~Taken from sermon by Priscilla Shirer ~

It is well

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

It is well with my soul,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ hath regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.

My sin—oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!—
My sin, not in part, but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more!
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!

For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life
Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.

But, Lord, ’tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul!

And Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.

~ Written by:  Horatio G. Spafford ~

2 Kings 4:8-37
And it fell on a day, that Elisha passed to Shunem, where was a great woman; and she constrained him to eat bread.  And so it was, that as oft as he passed by, he turned in thither to eat bread.  9 And she said unto her husband, “Behold now, I perceive that this is an holy man of God, which passeth by us continually.  10 Let us make a little chamber, I pray thee, on the wall; and let us set for him there a bed, and a table, and a stool, and a candlestick: and it shall be, when he cometh to us, that he shall turn in thither.”  11 And it fell on a day, that he came thither, and he turned into the chamber, and lay there. 12 And he said to Gehazi his servant, “Call this Shunammite.”  And when he had called her, she stood before him.  13 And he said unto him, “Say now unto her, Behold, thou hast been careful for us with all this care; what is to be done for thee? wouldest thou be spoken for to the king, or to the captain of the host?” And she answered, “I dwell among mine own people.”  14 And he said, “What then is to be done for her?”  And Gehazi answered, “Verily she hath no child, and her husband is old.”  15 And he said, “Call her.”  And when he had called her, she stood in the door. 16 And he said, “About this season, according to the time of life, thou shalt embrace a son.”  And she said, “Nay, my lord, thou man of God, do not lie unto thine handmaid.”  17 And the woman conceived, and bare a son at that season that Elisha had said unto her, according to the time of life.  18 And when the child was grown, it fell on a day, that he went out to his father to the reapers.  19 And he said unto his father, “My head, my head.”  And he said to a lad, “Carry him to his mother.”  20 And when he had taken him, and brought him to his mother, he sat on her knees till noon, and then died.  21 And she went up, and laid him on the bed of the man of God, and shut the door upon him, and went out.  22 And she called unto her husband, and said, “Send me, I pray thee, one of the young men, and one of the asses, that I may run to the man of God, and come again.”  23 And he said, “Wherefore wilt thou go to him to day? it is neither new moon, nor sabbath.”  And she said, “It shall be well.”  24 Then she saddled an ass, and said to her servant, “Drive, and go forward; slack not thy riding for me, except I bid thee.”  25 So she went and came unto the man of God to mount Carmel. And it came to pass, when the man of God saw her afar off, that he said to Gehazi his servant, “Behold, yonder is that Shunammite:  26 Run now, I pray thee, to meet her, and say unto her, Is it well with thee? is it well with thy husband? is it well with the child?”  And she answered, “It is well.”  27 And when she came to the man of God to the hill, she caught him by the feet: but Gehazi came near to thrust her away. And the man of God said, “Let her alone; for her soul is vexed within her: and the Lord hath hid it from me, and hath not told me.”  28 Then she said, “Did I desire a son of my lord? did I not say, Do not deceive me?”  29 Then he said to Gehazi, “Gird up thy loins, and take my staff in thine hand, and go thy way: if thou meet any man, salute him not; and if any salute thee, answer him not again: and lay my staff upon the face of the child.”  30 And the mother of the child said, “As the Lord liveth, and as thy soul liveth, I will not leave thee.”  And he arose, and followed her.  31 And Gehazi passed on before them, and laid the staff upon the face of the child; but there was neither voice, nor hearing. Wherefore he went again to meet him, and told him, saying, “The child is not awaked.”  32 And when Elisha was come into the house, behold, the child was dead, and laid upon his bed.  33 He went in therefore, and shut the door upon them twain, and prayed unto the Lord .  34 And he went up, and lay upon the child, and put his mouth upon his mouth, and his eyes upon his eyes, and his hands upon his hands: and he stretched himself upon the child; and the flesh of the child waxed warm.  35 Then he returned, and walked in the house to and fro; and went up, and stretched himself upon him: and the child sneezed seven times, and the child opened his eyes.  36 And he called Gehazi, and said, “Call this Shunammite.”  So he called her.  And when she was come in unto him, he said, “Take up thy son.”  37 Then she went in, and fell at his feet, and bowed herself to the ground, and took up her son, and went out.

One day Jesus will call my name

Some days drag and some days fly.
And some days I think of the day I’ll die…
Some days fill me and some days drain.
And one day Jesus will call my name!

One day Jesus will call my name –
as days go by, I hope I don’t stay the same!
I wanna get so close to Him that it’s no big change,
on that day that Jesus calls my name!

Most days I pray, but some days I curse;
A sad number of days I put myself first.
But it’s not what I do – the cross made that plain!
And one day Jesus will call my name!

~ Written by:  Phil McHugh
Performed by:  Lynda Randall ~

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qz58xcJHAJ4

Unworthy of the Blood

I know not why the Sovereign King would leave His throne on High
to dwell here in this barren land with mortals, such as I…
He left His home in Paradise, oh why, I’ll never know…
but His precious Blood has made me purer than the virgin snow!

Here am I, so unworthy of the Blood
Unworthy of the Blood that sets me free!
Here am I, so unworthy of the Blood,
and yet, it flowed for me…

For every time I falter and I bring the Father shame,
a droplet of His precious Blood then falls upon my name…
I’ll never know the reason why this thing has come to be,
all I know is that He did it, just for you and me!

~ Written by:  Jeff Ross
Performed by:  Jimmy Swaggart ~

Ephesians 1:7
“In Whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace…”

Ephesians 2:13
“But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.”

Colossians 1:14, 20
“In Whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins…  And, having made peace through the blood of His cross, by Him to reconcile all things unto Himself; by Him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.”

1 Peter 1:18-19
“Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;  But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a Lamb without blemish and without spot…”

1 John 1:7
“But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.”

Revelation 12:11
“And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.”

Count your blessings

When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed,
when you are discouraged, thinking all is lost…
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
and it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.  (Psalm 143:5)

Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
and it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?  (Matthew 11:28, 1 Peter 5:7)
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?  (Matthew 16:24)
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly,
and you will keep singing as the days go by.

When you look at others with their lands and gold,  (Proverbs 11:28)
think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold.  (Matthew 6:20, John 14:2-3)
Count your many blessings:  Wealth can never buy  (Acts 8:18-20, Ephesians 2:8)
your reward in heaven, nor your home on high.

So, amid the conflict whether great or small,
do not be disheartened, God is over all…  (Ephesians 1:21-23)
Count your many blessings:  angels will attend,  (Psalm 91:11)
help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.

~ Words:  Johnson Oatman, Jr.
Music:  Edwin O. Excell ~

The end of the beginning

I was taking a trip on a plane the other day, just wishing that I could get out,
when the man next to me saw the book in my hand and asked me what it was about.
So I settled back in my seat. “A best-seller,” I said, “a history and mystery in one.”
Then I opened up the Book and began to read from Matthew, Mark, Luke and John…

“He was born of a virgin one holy night in the little town of Bethlehem.
Angels gathered ’round Him underneath the stars singing praises to the great I AM.
He walked on the water, healed the lame, and made the blind to see again;
and for the first time here on earth we learned that God could be a Friend…
And though He never, ever did a single thing wrong, the angry crowd chose Him.
And then He walked down the road and died on the cross and that was the end… of the beginning.”

“That’s not a new book, that’s a Bible,” he said, “and I’ve heard it all before.
I’ve tried religion, its shame and guilt, and I don’t need it anymore.
It’s superstition, made-up tales, just to help the weak to survive.”
“Let me read it again,” I said, “But listen closely – this is gonna change your life!”

“He was born of a virgin one holy night in the little town of Bethlehem.
Angels gathered ’round Him underneath the stars singing praises to the great I AM.
He walked on the water, healed the lame, and made the blind to see again;
and for the first time here on earth we learned that God could be a Friend…
And though He never, ever did a single thing wrong, the angry crowd chose Him.
And then He walked down the road and died on the cross and that was the end… of the beginning.”

“The end of the beginning?” he said with a smile. “What more could there be?  He’s dead.
You said they hung Him, put nails in His hands and a crown of thorns on His head.”
I said, “I’ll read it again, but this time there’s more, and I believe that this is true:
His death wasn’t the end but the beginning of life that’s completed in you.
Don’t you see?  He did all this for you…”

“He was born of a virgin one holy night in the little town of Bethlehem;
all the angels singing praises to the great I AM.
He walked on the water, healed the lame, and made the blind to see…
And for the first time here on earth, did you know that God could be a Friend?
And though He never did a single thing wrong, He was the one the crowd chose.
And then He walked and He died, but three days later, three days later, three days later… He rose!
Three days later He rose!

You see, He came, and He lived, and He died, but that was the end of the beginning.”

~ Lyrics and Music by:  David Phelps ~

Nail it to the Cross

Each worry, stress or sorrow,
each need you’re thinking of…
Nail it to the Cross
and entrust it to Christ’s love.

A trial or temptation,
a challenge hard to face…
Nail it to the Cross,
and give it to His grace.

For Christ redeemed all suffering,
all struggle, loss, and death…
He “nailed” the world’s salvation
as He took His final Breath.

~ Author unknown ~

In the shadow of the Cross

In the shadow of the Cross

Wounded, our stripes were laid upon Him
He was bruised; a crown of thorns for our iniquity
A Man of sorrows – despised and rejected:
He was nailed to the Cross to bear the sins for you and me

In the shadow of the Cross, I stand forgiven
And by the power of His precious Blood, I’ve been set free
In the Cross I’ve found the love that only He could give –
In the shadow of the Cross on a hill called Calvary

Suffering, in shame He hung upon that tree
An offering for sins – His life’s Blood He freely gave
They laid Him in the tomb, so soon to be forgotten…
But He arose – He is the Victor over the grave!

~ Unknown author ~

Isaiah 53

1  Who hath believed our report?  and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?  2  For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground:  He hath no form nor comeliness;  and when we shall see Him, there is no beauty that we should desire Him.  3  He is despised and rejected of mena Man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief:  and we hid as it were our faces from Him;  He was despised, and we esteemed Him not.  4  Surely He hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows:  yet we did esteem Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.  5  But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities:  the chastisement of our peace was upon Him;  and with His stripes we are healed.  6  All we like sheep have gone astray;  we have turned every one to his own way;  and the LORD hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all.  7  He was oppressed, and He was afflicted, yet He opened not his mouth:  He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so He openeth not his mouth.  8  He was taken from prison and from judgment:  and who shall declare His generation?  for He was cut off out of the land of the living:  for the transgression of my people was He stricken.  9  And He made His grave with the wicked, and with the rich in His death;  because He had done no violence, neither was any deceit in His mouth.  10  Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise Him;  He hath put Him to grief:  when thou shalt make His soul an offering for sin, He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in His hand.  11  He shall see of the travail of His soul, and shall be satisfied:  by His knowledge shall My righteous Servant justify many;  for He shall bear their iniquities.  12  Therefore will I divide Him a portion with the great, and He shall divide the spoil with the strong;  because He hath poured out His soul unto death:  and He was numbered with the transgressors;  and He bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

Further reading:  Matthew 26-27, Mark 14-15, Luke 22-23, John 18-19