Tuesday, June 1, 2010


Praise to the Lord, the Almighty the King of creation!
O my soul, praise him for he is your health and salvation!
Let all who hear
Now to his temple draw near;
Joining in glad adoration!
I had hard time singing that song yesterday afternoon.  We were up at Lindstrom for a wedding and I nearly lost it as our daughter Naomi stood up front next to her childhood friend Emily.  Emily had been at our house most days for many years, or Naomi had been over at her house, and as I sat in church, with my wife on my left and Naomi's boyfriend on my right I could hardly sing at all.  They had arranged it so the wedding party was facing the congregation.  I saw Naomi and Emily singing and was filled with thankfulness--thankfulness overflowing into tears for how faithful God has been over the years.
Praise to the Lord, who o'er all things is wondrously reigning
And, as on wings of an eagle, uplifting sustaining.
Have you not seen
All that is needful has been
Sent by his gracious ordaining?
We'd gone over early to our old hometown so I could visit a dear spiritual warrior friend at her home.  Sylvia always challenged me to go deeper with God.  She studies the scriptures and praying that I and others would be surrendered to God's Truth.  We met about 18 years ago when I came to Taylors Falls, and even back then she was suffering from scleroderma. She will tell you how faithful God has been to her, but now she's suffering so much that she asked me to pray that she would die.  We read Galatians 6 about the armor of God, Second Corinthians 4-5 about our earthly bodies, and First Corinthians 15 about the resurrection.  Then we prayed for God to take her home--and for continued faith and patience until that day comes.  Please pray for her, and for her husband Les.
Praise to the Lord, who will prosper your work and defend you;
Surely his goodness and mercy shall daily attend you.
Ponder anew
What the Almighty can do
If with his love he befriend you.
Now I'm back in Cokato and am looking at the scriptures for this coming Sunday. All of the scriptures push the supernatural.  Jesus raises a young man from the dead (Luke 7:11-17).  Elijah does the same (1 Kings 17:17-24).  In Psalm 30 we join with them and others who have experienced God's mighty power and, finally, we begin a several week long reading of Galatians where it says plainly that the good news of Jesus is not "from human origin."  It comes directly from God.
Praise to the Lord! Oh, let all that is in me adore him!
All that has life and breath, come now with praises before him!
Let the amen
Sound from his people again.
Gladly forever adore him!
When I tried to join Naomi and Emily and the congregation in singing that song I was just overcome.  I just have to pray and praise in thanksgiving--for God's work in the lives of Naomi and Emily, for God's work in the lives of Sylvia and Les, and for your continued work in our lives here.  Hallelujah, God, you are so good!
I praise you, Lord God, that you do not leave us to live life on our own, or to figure you out by ourselves.  I praise you for your Word, which reveals you to human beings!  I praise you for being higher and better and more wonderful than we can imagine, for sustaining young and old, rich and poor, those who are sick and those who are strong.  I praise you, Father, for being real, even if my eyes, for now, cannot see you.  Draw me, Holy Spirit, nearer and nearer to you, so I may never depend on my own strength.

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