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27th June 2021

We praise You, Father, that we have received grace in place of grace through Jesus Christ.

O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good!

We praise You, Christ Jesus, that we have received grace upon grace because of Your birth, perfect life, death and resurrection.

Thank You for Your love, grace, salvation and hope for eternal life in heaven with You!

We praise You, Holy Spirit, that You have given us faith in Jesus and keep us in that faith. Thank You for exuberantly giving us gift after gift after gift!

Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honour and glory for ever and ever, Amen.

The author of the following song was William D. Pennick. He served as a Salvation Army officer for some 40 years, most of that time overseas, until his Promotion to Glory aged just 58. Regarding this song he said that in southern India there is a vast network of waterways, some of which are extremely narrow and even go tunnelling through the hills. He wrote this prayer of adoration and consecration in Sri Lanka, in circumstances which reminded him of these ‘narrow waters’, when his heart cried out for some new blessing in song – ‘ something beautiful that would help and inspire the souls of men’. The song, entitled : Every hour and power for Jesus! was published in The Musical Salvationist in December 1919.

King of love so condescending,

Spurning not our sinful race,

Bearing death, our cause defending,

Lavishing thy gifts of grace,

We adore thee, we adore thee,

And thy Kingdom’s cause embrace.

Spurning now the world’s enticing,

Love of ease and passing show,

Heavenly grace our souls sufficing,

We obey thy word to go

Bearing tidings, precious tidings,

All the world may Jesus know.

When the toils of life are over

And the realms of Glory won,

We shall reap in Heaven the harvest,

Hear the Saviour’s glad well done.

Hallelujah! Hallelujah!

Jesus’ reign has now begun.

Each day I read one song from the 1986 song book as part of my prayer-time. When I read that recently I was struck particularly by verse 1, especially by the first word on the fourth line ~ “lavishing”.

What a beautiful word describing God’s generosity to us.

We are saved, adopted into God’s family, we are filled with His Holy Spirit, and we know the confidence of belonging to Him every day.

What great blessings God gives to us – as Follliott Sandford Pierpoint expresses it in song 28 :

For each perfect gift of thine

To our race so freely given,

Graces human and divine,

Flowers of earth and buds of Heaven,

Father, unto thee we raise

This our sacrifice of praise.

Reflecting on the beauty of worship in his Jottings from my Journey, (The Salvation Army, Canada, 1998) Commissioner Ed Read utters this prayer :

“Open my eyes, Lord. Let me, in awe, admire and adore. May I see your face, its serenity, its joy and its compassion. So shall I know I am welcome in your presence. So these eyes, touched by grace, shall be satisfied with the sight, here and now, in part, there and then, of the unveiled splendour.”

How deep the Father’s love for us, How vast beyond all measure, That He should give His only Son To make a wretch His treasure. How great the pain of searing loss – The Father turns His face away, As wounds which mar the Chosen One Bring many sons to glory.

Behold the man upon a cross, My sin upon His shoulders; Ashamed, I hear my mocking voice Call out among the scoffers. It was my sin that held Him there Until it was accomplished; His dying breath has brought me life – I know that it is finished.

I will not boast in anything, No gifts, no power, no wisdom; But I will boast in Jesus Christ, His death and resurrection. Why should I gain from His reward? I cannot give an answer; But this I know with all my heart – His wounds have paid my ransom.

Stuart Townend Copyright © 1995 Thankyou Music (Adm. by excl. UK & Europe, adm. by Integrity Music, part of the David C Cook family,

My Dad was from Cookstown in Co. Tyrone, Northern Ireland. He hadn’t been able to visit his family for some years when, in 1963, he took my Mum, my younger brother (Sean) and I on holiday to a seaside town in Northern Ireland. It was arranged that we would spend several days going to see our aunts, uncles and cousins, as well as other people my Dad had grown up with. My parents got a good deal from a local one-man taxi firm who would drive us wherever we needed to go around the area. We duly arrived at the first house about 9:30 a.m. and within a few minutes were asked if we would “like a cup of tea”, which we accepted. The offered cuppa seemed a long time arriving however! But after half-an-hour we were asked if we would ‘step into the parlour’ for some tea. There laid out on the table was a feast fit for a king! This was no mere cup of tea! Many loaves of different types of home-made bread, cakes, sweets, chocolates, jam, marmalade, cheese, meat, sausage rolls, pasties. . . and much more!

What a marvellous meal!

Although we had not long had our breakfast we tried to do justice to the generous spread!

Eventually, after my Dad had a long catch-up conversation, it was time to move on to the next visit.

Immediately on arrival there we were asked if we would “like a cup of tea”, and – yes, you guessed it – we were treated to a table full of delicious food.

And the pattern was repeated in home after home that we visited over those days.

At one relatives house we were asked how we had travelled there, and my parents explained about the taxi, the driver of which (Mr Jim Lexey) was sat outside reading a book. Our relatives insisted that we couldn’t “leave the poor man out there”, and he was invited in to join the feast. The same invitation was given at the remaining houses that we visited. Mr Lexey (although a total stranger to all present) was treated as though he were a long-lost relative!

After the first day we learnt not to have breakfast before setting off in the morning!

What amazed us was the generosity of our relatives in providing such wonderful amounts of food for us, even though they hadn’t seen Dad for many years, or (in many cases) met my Mum or my brother and I.

We were also pleasantly surprised at how generously Jim Lexey was accepted into the company in such a lovely way.

Think of the word ‘lavish’ and that would describe the hospitality of my relatives.

Think of the word ‘lavish’ and how that describes how much God loves us.

Ephesians 1 verses 7 and 8 say, “ In him (the Lord Jesus Christ) we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us.”

God has given us so much. Not just a begrudging, “Well I suppose I’ll let you into Heaven,” but out of God’s generous heart He pours out upon us His great and precious blessings.

We have received so much from God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

In terms of our spiritual life we have received all we need from God – He has not held anything back that would make us more like Jesus, and true citizens of the Kingdom of God here and now.

Look how David the shepherd boy acknowledges God’s complete provision for him in Psalm 23 :

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

Don’t we long to be like Jesus, and lovingly fulfil His will and purpose for our lives? How is it possible? By our trusting God completely, and having an open heart and mind to receive the many blessings that God has promised us.

The beautiful and inspiring poetry of Annie Johnson Flint encourages us to simply look to God and humbly ask for His Divine provision for our greatest needs:

He giveth more grace as our burdens grow greater, He sendeth more strength as our labours increase, To added afflictions he addeth his mercy, To multiplied trials he multiplies peace. When we have exhausted our store of endurance, When our strength has failed ere the day is half done, When we reach the end of our hoarded resources Our Father's full giving is only begun. His love has no limits, his grace has no measure, His power no boundary known unto men; For out of his infinite riches in Jesus He giveth,

and giveth,

and giveth again.

Retired Commissioner Harry Read has written a very helpful book of prayers entitled, “Language of the Soul”. This prayer is entitled, The Timeless Resource :

There are no limits to the Spirit’s power to teach;

Did not the Christ say he would teach all things?

All that we need is, therefore, within reach,

Because when he draws near, all things he brings.

If we need power, then power is near at hand;

If we need peace, then peace is there to take;

Security? Safe in his grace we stand;

Adventure? He is ready to command.

Do we need wisdom? None as wise as he;

And does he not give power to endure?

He meets our needs so very easily

Because his hold on everything is sure.

So generous his love – so vast his store,

Whatever we may need, he offers more.

1 John 3 verse 1 says this : See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!

Professor Kenneth Wuest explains it like this : “There is enough grace in God’s heart of love to save and keep saved for time and eternity, every sinner that has ever, or will ever live, and then have enough left over to save a million more universes full of sinners, were there such, then some more.

There is enough grace available to give every saint constant victory over sin, and then some more.

There is enough grace to meet and cope with all the sorrows, heartaches, difficulties, temptations, testings and trials of human existence, and more added to that.

God’s salvation is an oversize salvation.

It is shock proof, stain proof, unbreakable, all sufficient.

It is equal to every emergency, for it flows from the heart of an infinite God, freely bestowed and righteously given through the all-sufficient sacrifice of our Lord on The Cross.

Salvation is all of grace.

It is super-abounding grace.”

(Golden Nuggets from the Greek New Testament page 82)

My faithful Father, enduring Friend Your tender mercy's like a river with no end It overwhelms me, covers my sin Each time I come into Your presence I stand in wonder once again Your grace still amazes me Your love is still a mystery Each day I fall on my knees 'Cause Your grace still amazes me Your grace still amazes me Oh, patient Saviour, You make me whole You are the Author and the Healer of my soul What can I give You, Lord, what can I say I know there's no way to repay You Only to offer You my praise Your grace still amazes me Your love is still a mystery Each day I fall on my knees 'Cause Your grace still amazes me Your grace still amazes me It's deeper, it's wider It's stronger, it's higher It's deeper it's wider It's stronger, it's higher than anything my eyes can see Your grace still amazes me Your love is still a mystery Each day I fall on my knees 'Cause Your grace still amazes me Your grace still amazes me

Writers: Connie Harrington, Andrew Shawn Craig

This prayer was written by General Shaw Clifton (Rtd). It formed part of an article entitled God The Father, written in 1999. It was inspired by the famous painting by the Dutch artist, Rembrandt, of the Return of the Prodigal Son.

“O Father God, whose being transcends the limits of our human lives, look upon us with your perfect love, as a parent regards a cherished child. Seeking to find you, we come trusting in your justice, needing your forgiveness, and ready to receive gladly your correction. In the sacred name of Jesus, to whom we look to see the Father. Amen.”

Jesus Christ, I think upon Your sacrifice You became nothing, poured out to death Many times I’ve wondered at your gift of life And I’m in that place once again I’m in that place once again

And once again I look upon the Cross where you died I’m humbled by Your mercy and I’m broken inside Once again I thank You Once again I pour out my life

Now You are exalted to the highest place King of the Heavens, where one day I’ll bow But for now I marvel at Your saving grace And I’m full of praise once again I’m full of praise once again

And once again I look upon the Cross where you died I’m humbled by Your mercy and I’m broken inside Once again I thank You Once again I pour out my life

Thank You for the Cross Thank You for the Cross Thank You for the Cross, my Friend

(words and music by Matt Redman)

A prayer for the church throughout the UK :

Awake – God is on the move

Awake – the times are serious and He is calling His people to prayer.

Awake – as in days gone by – He is stirring a passion for revival.

Lord, shake us from our slumber, wake us up, stir us up to cry out to you in word and spirit for the salvation for our nation. We pray that those who don’t know you might encounter you through your church, make us ready Lord, and for all those who have ever considered themselves to be a Christian may they return wholeheartedly to you. Amen.”

(Source unknown)

Thank you for reading

Prepared by Major Paul M

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