Daily Devotion for September 24, 2010
Our Father, who 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 evil.
For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever.
From the 2011 Junior School Choirs Competition in the UK, the Ballyhome Primary School Choir sings Purify My Heart.
Purify my heart,
Let me be as gold and precious silver.
Purify my heart,
Let me be as gold, pure gold.
My heart's one desire
Is to be... holy;
Set apart for You, Lord.
I choose to be... holy;
Set apart for You, my Master,
Ready to do Your will.
Purify my heart,
Cleanse me from within
And make me holy.
Purify my heart,
Cleanse me from my sin, deep within.
Music and Lyrics by Jeff Nelson
The Love of Christ
Oh holy Christ, I thank you and love you for seeing who I really am. You know things about me that I don't even know myself, for you see with the clear eye of God, and not through the psychological tangle of human emotion and self-deception as others see me and I see myself. I most especially thank you, I fall upon my knees in gratitude, that you love me despite all of the sin and ugliness you see in me. You can see my beauty and heart, also, though, and love me as nobody else possibly could.
Like a father, you love me. Like a perfect brother, you love me. Knowing that you see me so clearly, and yet love me enough to suffer torture and death to save my soul, transcends my comprehension. I would be sick with shame, except that you have forbidden it, and by the power of God forgive my wrongdoing.
I give myself to you wholly, freely; every part of me blesses you. Take me to your bosom, holy Christ; let me live your love and reflect your light, that others may see a dim reflection of your magnificence in my lowly life, and that despite my many grievous faults, I might please you by doing better today, and every day. And this I vow: I will try, at least once today, to take a step closer to you, by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Thank You Lord
Sometimes I stop and wonder why you’re still here; Or what is good about me, and why you even care.
You’re always there with me to help me out each day; Even though I seldom listen to the words you have to say.
The things I always pray for, I know they will come true; My joy and peace you give me when each day is new.
You continue to forgive me for all that I have done; When nights are filled with sorrow, the day will bring the sun.
In days full of trouble, and friends won’t say hi; I know you will be there with me to take me if I die.
For who am I to deserve the grace you have shown; Thank you Lord for keeping me, when life for me was cold.
by Gary R. Ferris
[If everything were easy, we would not need the cross.]
Lord, in utter humility I thank you and glorify you, that you might hear the prayer of one so small as myself, amidst the billions of souls among billions of stars in one of billions of galaxies in your universe. Let me go forth in your peace, keeping your Spirit always in my mind; and bless me, I pray, that I might always follow your will and live in the radiance of your blessing.
Think of the day ahead in terms of God with you, and visualize health, strength, guidance, purity, calm confidence, and victory as the gifts of His presence.
Psalm 63:1 (NKJV)
O God, You are my God;
Early will I seek You;
My soul thirsts for You;
My flesh longs for You
In a dry and thirsty land
Where there is no water.
John 19:28-30 (KJV)
After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst.
Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a sponge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth.
When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.
Notes on the Scripture
eading and remembering the death of Jesus is the saddest day in the church year. We mourn, fast, we strip our altars bear. But why do we mourn the death of Christ, a death ordained by Christ himself, especially when we know he will rise again in a few days, in great glory?
It is human to mourn when a loved one dies. Even most devout Christians will mourn and grieve the death of a loved one, though they are certain that the deceased has gone on to a better existence. We mourn the pain they have suffered and we mourn the pain we feel at their departure. So it is natural to mourn the death of one who is so innocent, so perfect, the very Prince of Peace.
We also mourn for Christ’s pain. Never does he seem as fully human as when he says he is thirsty. Thirst is used throughout the Gospel of John to stand for spiritual yearning; and Christ repeatedly offers to quench others’ thirst with a river of water that will never run dry. But now, he himself thirsts; he seeks the spirit of his Father to comfort him in his agony. It lets us know, without question, that God has experienced the most extreme pain of being human and thus gives us confidence in his sympathy for us.
And we mourn for the sinfulness of those who killed him and for the pain we, ourselves, have caused in our lives. Despite our best efforts, all of us have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, and we regret it. It is the ultimate day of penitence.
Although the accounts differ among the gospels, Christ receiving vinegar is the source of a lot of controversy and confusion. People can’t even agree on what the “vinegar” actually was, or whether it was an act of cruelty or an act of mercy to give it to Christ. One must think that in John’s version, vinegar on hyssop was intended as an act of kindness, because hyssop was a medicinal herb used widely in Jewish purification ceremonies.
One thing we can say with certainty: The act fulfills and ancient Biblical prophesy: “They gave me also gall for my meat; and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.” (Psalm 69:21)