Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Thanksgiving Challenge

I recently preached a sermon at Denton Community Church on Ps. 107, and I'd like to recommend a devotional activity. Read through the Psalm thanking God for his great redemption and steadfast love (I recommend ESV, because it uses steadfast love [loyal love, covenantal love]). Notice the 4 examples of those who were in a place of humility, lowliness, need, and even on the brink of fainting, death, and insanity. Notice the structure of each of the 4 examples.

Then, take some time and write your own story of His redemption of you through salvation. Here's the structure:
1) A description of who you are, where you are, and the problem you have
2) A cry out to God for deliverance - Then they cried out the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress.
3) God delivers you and meets your specific need
4) A challenge to thank God for his steadfast love and wondrous works - Let them thank the LORD for his steadfast love, for his wondrous works to the children of man!
5) A further explanation of God's specific redemption of you and / or a further challenge to praise God with sacrifices of thanksgiving, songs of joy, and public praise of His glorious name and steadfast love.

Here is what I came up with for my own redemption story. Enjoy:

Some were following a form of godliness
Yet denying it’s divine power.
For they had established a law for themselves,
Attainable by their own will
A false hope in their “holy ways”
Unknowingly rejecting God’s necessary enablement
So by the sin of their hearts, He convicted them
By the blood on their hands, He rebuked them
They beat their chests for mercy knowing their enemy lay beneath
Of which the skin, muscle, and bone could not hide
A heart of stone beating tainted blood
Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble,
And he delivered them from their distress.
He transformed hearts, stone to flesh,
And purified their blood in the Sacrificed Lamb
A covenant of Grace and a life of the Spirit
A new law, a new godliness, a new walk
Let them thank the LORD for his steadfast love,
For his wondrous works to the children of man!
Let them praise His holy name among all people,
Let them shout with songs of joy to all the earth.