It Is Fitting and Right to Hymn You

It is fitting and right to hymn you (to bless you, to praise you), to give you thanks, to worship you in all places of your dominion.  For you are God, ineffable, inconceivable, invisible, incomprehensible, existing always and in the same way, you and your only-begotten Son and your Holy Spirit.   You brought us out of not-being to being; and when we had fallen, your raised us up again; and did not cease to do everything until you had brought us up to heaven, and granted us the kingdom that is to come.  For all these things we give thanks to you and to your only-begotten Son and to your Holy Spirit, for unseen benefits that have come upon us.

Preface to the Eucharistic Prayer from

The Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom

Sunday Night Thoughts

Post #3156

Tomorrow marks the unofficial beginning of summer.  The temps are beginning to remind me of summer.  I have enjoyed the rainy weather of late, except for the fact that it makes the grass grow like crazy.  The original forecast for this weekend was much hotter than it turned out.

I can’t believe that the kids are almost out of school.  All of our students get out this coming Friday, so summer vacation begins in earnest for them.  Our Vacation Bible School is just two weeks away.  We are going with the Go Fish Guy’s Praise program.  It is a solid Bible-based program.  We may use some different songs, but all the Bible teaching will be the same.  There is a great staff lined up for this program.  I am looking forward to it.

This marks my first week side-lined with a non-running injury.  Hopefully this week I will hear from my doctor and get the surgery scheduled.  It will be strange because I’m working tomorrow – the first Memorial Day in about five years.  I remember working quite a few Memorial Days back when I worked for Radio Shack.  I’ve opted for more days at shorter hours so I am not standing for as long.

This morning during worship we celebrated Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit came and the church began.  We had a good service.  I ended up playing bass for more than half the songs.  We did some older songs such as “Pentecostal Power,” and “Fill Me Now” and some 60’s and 70’s songs – “Come, Holy Spirit” and “Sweet, Sweet Spirit.”  At the moment we are watching our second race of the day – the Coca Cola 600.

Following worship, we had a very nice picnic at church.  We had a great time of fellowship.  To finish off the day, we went to Taco Bell – to get some Doritos Tacos and then to Kline’s (a local ice cream shop.) It was a great way to finish off a day.

Tomorrow we take time to remember those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our country.  Thank you!

Seize the Day!

Sunday Set List

May 27, 2012

Pentecost Sunday

Welcome and Announcements

Call to Worship and Invocation

Songs of Worship

Send It On Down

He Abides

Holy Spirit, Rain Down

Worship Through Prayer

Songs of Worship

Come, Holy Spirit

Sweet, Sweet Spirit

Worship Through Giving

Song of Worship

Pentecostal Power

Worship Through God’s Word

Building A Love That Lasts

Finding Fulfillment

John 10:10

Song of Commitment

Fill Me Now


Dry Bones

Day of Pentecost (May 27, 2012)

Acts 2:1-21 or Ezekiel 37:1-14; Psalm 104:24-34, 35; Romans 8:22-27; John 15:26-27; 16:4-15

Ezekiel 37:1-14

New Living Translation (NLT)

37 The Lord took hold of me, and I was carried away by the Spirit of the Lord to a valley filled with bones. He led me all around among the bones that covered the valley floor. They were scattered everywhere across the ground and were completely dried out. Then he asked me, “Son of man, can these bones become living people again?”

“O Sovereign Lord,” I replied, “you alone know the answer to that.”

Then he said to me, “Speak a prophetic message to these bones and say, ‘Dry bones, listen to the word of the Lord! This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Look! I am going to put breath into you and make you live again! I will put flesh and muscles on you and cover you with skin. I will put breath into you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.’”

So I spoke this message, just as he told me. Suddenly as I spoke, there was a rattling noise all across the valley. The bones of each body came together and attached themselves as complete skeletons. Then as I watched, muscles and flesh formed over the bones. Then skin formed to cover their bodies, but they still had no breath in them.

Then he said to me, “Speak a prophetic message to the winds, son of man. Speak a prophetic message and say, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Come, O breath, from the four winds! Breathe into these dead bodies so they may live again.’”

10 So I spoke the message as he commanded me, and breath came into their bodies. They all came to life and stood up on their feet—a great army.

11 Then he said to me, “Son of man, these bones represent the people of Israel. They are saying, ‘We have become old, dry bones—all hope is gone. Our nation is finished.’ 12 Therefore, prophesy to them and say, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: O my people, I will open your graves of exile and cause you to rise again. Then I will bring you back to the land of Israel. 13 When this happens, O my people, you will know that I am the Lord. 14 I will put my Spirit in you, and you will live again and return home to your own land. Then you will know that I, the Lord, have spoken, and I have done what I said. Yes, the Lord has spoken!’”

What happens when the Holy Spirit fills the life of a believer?  I think as we look at these words from Ezekiel, we learn how the Spirit moves and breathes and lives in the life of the believer.  Only when the Spirit breathes in us, can we have the power to do what God has called us to do.

I once heard it said that there are two things the Holy Spirit empowers us to do:

  1. Live the holy life (a life set apart)
  2. Live a life of service.

As we gather for worship this Sunday, remember how the Holy Spirit came upon those early believers and they changed the world.

A Party of One

The other day, Ron McClung, of Indianapolis, Indiana, wrote the following piece based on an excerpt from Filled Up, Poured Out: How God’s Spirit Can Revive Your Passion and Purpose by my good friend, Mark Wilson.  I trust that it will shed some light and encourage you.

A Party of One

My wife and I walked into a restaurant the other day and the hostess said, “Party of two?” and I replied, “Yes, there are just the two of us.”
If I had been alone, I doubt if she would have asked, “Party of one?” because it’s hard to have a “party” by yourself, unless it’s a pity party – in which case you’re almost sure to be alone.
My friend, Mark Wilson, a pastor in northern Wisconsin, wrote a delightful book,Filled Up, Poured Out, in which he suggests four problems with pity parties:
1. There is no music.
If you’re feeling sorry for yourself, you are not simultaneously giving thanks for the things he has done for you. As Mark says, “Nobody brings a banjo or accordion” or any other instrument. In your head, you might hear the melancholy strains of a lonely violin or the spooky sound of a dirge played on an organ. But in all likelihood, there’s just no music at all.
2. There are no refreshments.
Think about it: there’s nothing really refreshing about a pity party. Instead we dish up a “stew of rehashed offenses and complaints.”
3. There are no guests.
If you send out invitations to your pity party, I can almost guarantee no one will come. It’s true that misery loves company, but I have seldom seen people stand in line to spend time intentionally with those who chronically feel sorry for themselves.

4. There is no hope.
This is the saddest of all. As long as we feel sorry for ourselves, we are consumed with our problems, not looking for a brighter future.
The apostle Paul could have thrown a pity party, because he face huge difficulties in life. He was beaten several times, shipwrecked, faced danger from bandits, and others. He often went without sleep and suffered both hunger and thirst. Yet he said, “For Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:10 NIV).
He could have had a pity party. If anyone had reason to feel sorry for himself, it was Paul. Yet he learned to trust the Lord and believe that in Christ better things lay ahead. So trust in the Lord. In your weakness, he can make you strong.