ADORATION – Reflect on God’s Greatness
GOD IS MERCY, GRACE, AND PATIENCE
God’s mercy, patience, and grace may be seen as three separate attributes, or as specific aspects of God’s goodness. These three characteristics of God’s nature are often mentioned together, especially in the Old Testament. When God declared his name to Moses, he proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness” (Exodus 34:6). David says in Psalm 103:8, “The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.”
Praise the God who is Merciful, Gracious and Patient
Think for just a moment about mercy. God has not given you what you deserve. Consider saving grace for a moment. God has given you what you could never earn; salvation and freedom from sin. Think now about God’s patience. He waited for you to repent. He is patient now in leading you to become like His Son. Praise Him and thank Him for His mercy, grace, and patience towards you.e He can relate with you personally. He is infinite and all-powerful, but He can also relate with you. Praise God because He can personally lead you and shepherd you.
CONFESSION: Confess your sins to God and receive his continued mercy.
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9
THANKSGIVING: Giving thanks to God for his specific blessings in our lives.
“Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.” Psalm 100
SUPPLICATION: Bringing our requests to God.
- Bring your personal prayer requests to God.
- Pray for Christian Challenge. Pray that college students would grow in the faith. Pray that their time together under the word would be sweet and encouraging. Ask God to move among them tonight.
Acts 17:22-31 – The Message
22-23 So Paul took his stand in the open space at the Areopagus and laid it out for them. “It is plain to see that you Athenians take your religion seriously. When I arrived here the other day, I was fascinated with all the shrines I came across. And then I found one inscribed, to the god nobody knows. I’m here to introduce you to this God so you can worship intelligently, know who you’re dealing with.
24-29 “The God who made the world and everything in it, this Master of sky and land, doesn’t live in custom-made shrines or need the human race to run errands for him, as if he couldn’t take care of himself. He makes the creatures; the creatures don’t make him. Starting from scratch, he made the entire human race and made the earth hospitable, with plenty of time and space for living so we could seek after God, and not just grope around in the dark but actually find him. He doesn’t play hide-and-seek with us. He’s not remote; he’s near. We live and move in him, can’t get away from him! One of your poets said it well: ‘We’re the God-created.’ Well, if we are the God-created, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to think we could hire a sculptor to chisel a god out of stone for us, does it?
30-31 “God overlooks it as long as you don’t know any better—but that time is past. The unknown is now known, and he’s calling for a radical life-change. He has set a day when the entire human race will be judged and everything set right. And he has already appointed the judge, confirming him before everyone by raising him from the dead.”
God is not a heavenly “grandfather,” he is the almighty King. But this King has a heart like a loving grandfather. At least in this sense, he loves being with his kids and grandkids. He isn’t just a taskmaster who is concerned with getting lots of things done in a “timely” fashion. He is concerned with who we are becoming as we do things together with him. He wants us to learn to trust him and love him. He wants us to reflect HIM in what we do and how we do what we do. Our focus tends to be mostly on “what”; his focus is largely on “who.” He is very interested in who we are becoming as we do the various “whats” of our lives. He is after us being conformed into the image of his Son. What can he use to bring about this transformation? Everything. The good, the bad. The hard, the easy. The exciting, the boring. The easy to understand, the impossibly confusing. He is working in all things to conform us to the image of Christ. If we understand his goal for us, we are positioned to thrive in his plans for us.