Friday Morning Prayer:)… December 15, 2017

December 15, 2017 - 6 minutes read
I stand amazed in the presence
Of Jesus the Nazarene,
And wonder how He could love me,
A sinner, condemned, unclean.
How marvelous! How wonderful!
And my song shall ever be:
How marvelous! How wonderful!
Is my Savior’s love for me!
For me it was in the garden
He prayed: “Not My will, but Thine.”
He had no tears for His own griefs,
But sweat drops of blood for mine.[1]
“But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy.  Spread your protection over them that those who love your name may rejoice in you.”[2]
As we sat together for family time and closing prayer at Alpine Youth Center, a brother reminded the kids and all of us really, that Christmas was our season to celebrate Jesus.   I thought, how necessary to constantly remind myself and others to intentionally put Jesus at the center of our attention.  He puts difficulties into perspective.  Jesus comforts through times of grief and sorrow.  He is the greatest gift we can receive.  The cross, forgiveness of sin, and a regenerate heart.  Joy overflowing comes from Jesus indwelling.  Brother/sister, resist the commercialism so prevalent during this season.  Love others deeply, carry the burdens of others, pray without ceasing, be joyful, and stand amazed in the presence of Jesus the Nazarene!
Like the Apostle Paul, we too pray with joy because others partner with us in the gospel.[3]  We need each other and joyfully pray for one another.  Diverse people created in God’s image, all in need of redemption through the cross.  The precious blood of Jesus shed for our salvation.  Yes!  How marvelous! How wonderful!  And my song shall ever be: How marvelous!  How wonderful!  This is the Christmas story.  Jesus Christ is born!  Our Savior born to die for our sins and raised from the dead for us to truly live![4]
In Christ, we share in God’s grace and long for one another with the affection of Jesus.  The love of God is manifest through our everyday lives.  In fact, Paul prayed that this supernatural love would abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight.[5]  “The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.”[6]  Thank God this agape (love) is intelligent and morally discerning.  It is not heedless sentiment nor misdirected emotion!  We praise God we are in Christ, and filled with the Holy Spirit.  Moreover, we rely on recognized principles from the Word of God and love accordingly.  In other words, Knowledge and depth of insight through the illumination of the Spirit to understand the living Word of God empowers and equips us to love others well.
 Beloved, my prayer is that you are experiencing the joy of Jesus all the time!  I want to know and experience the love, joy, peace… of Christ more and more.  Growing in grace and continually progressing in our shared faith is a joy!  I absolutely love encouraging and being encouraged by brothers and sisters in our shared faith.  This life in Christ is not commonplace nor a religious exercise!  No!  We share a living faith that constantly calls us to fellowship with our gracious Father, through the Son, and in the power of the Holy Spirit. 
Since you have encouragement from being united with Christ, and comfort from his love, and fellowship with the Spirit, and tenderness and compassion…[7]  make joy complete by being like-minded, have the same love, be one in spirit, and purpose.  I have to put to death selfishness and vain conceit daily!  I need Jesus indwelling to be humble and consider others before I consider myself.   As I am intentionally putting Jesus at the center of my attention, I will pursue the attitude of my Savior in all circumstances.   Humble, how we roll in Christ!  Truly, let’s stand amazed and overflow!
In pity angels beheld Him,
And came from the world of light
To comfort Him in the sorrows
He bore for my soul that night.
He took my sins and my sorrows,
He made them His very own;
He bore the burden to Calv’ry,
And suffered and died alone.
When with the ransomed in glory
His face I at last shall see,
’Twill be my joy through the ages
To sing of His love for me.
Sisters are meeting to pray.  First Baptist.  1912 Arnold Way.  Alpine. 0900.
You are invited.  Share with a sister in Christ and go join for a time of encouragement and prayer.  Local gals from various fellowships joining to love one another and enjoy God through a sweet hour of prayer.  Check it out.
Brothers are meeting too!  First Baptist.  (3rd Friday)  0730.
Come join us!  Brothers in Christ enjoying a time of fellowship and intentionally pursuing our gracious God through necessary prayer.  If your schedule allows don’t hesitate.   Week after week we rely on the Holy Spirit to lead our time together.

[2] Psalm 5:11
[3] Philippians 1:5
[4] Romans 6:4
[5] Philippians 1:9
[6] Galatians 5:6
[7] Philippians 2:1-5