ADORATION – Reflect on God’s Greatness
GOD IS FAITHFUL
Out of His faithfulness God honors His covenants and fulfills His promises. Our hope for the future rests upon God’s faithfulness. Psalm 89:1-8
I will sing of the steadfast love of the Lord, forever; with my mouth I will make known your faithfulness to all generations. For I said, “Steadfast love will be built up forever; in the heavens you will establish your faithfulness.” You have said, “I have made a covenant with my chosen one; I have sworn to David my servant:‘I will establish your offspring forever, and build your throne for all generations.’”
Praise God for His Faithfulness
Every promise God ever made, He has kept. It is no effort for Him to act faithfully and keep His word. He IS faithful. Praise God for faithfully keeping His covenant. Praise God for your future hope, because He is faithful to keep His promises.
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 as they meet tonight at River. Ask God to grow the student’s faith and grow their community. Pray for students far from God. Pray that they would turn to Him.
James 1:18-27 – The Message
16-18 So, my very dear friends, don’t get thrown off course. Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of heaven. The gifts are rivers of light cascading down from the Father of Light. There is nothing deceitful in God, nothing two-faced, nothing fickle. He brought us to life using the true Word, showing us off as the crown of all his creatures.
Act on What You Hear
19-21 Post this at all the intersections, dear friends: Lead with your ears, follow up with your tongue, and let anger straggle along in the rear. God’s righteousness doesn’t grow from human anger. So throw all spoiled virtue and cancerous evil in the garbage. In simple humility, let our gardener, God, landscape you with the Word, making a salvation-garden of your life.
22-24 Don’t fool yourself into thinking that you are a listener when you are anything but, letting the Word go in one ear and out the other. Act on what you hear! Those who hear and don’t act are like those who glance in the mirror, walk away, and two minutes later have no idea who they are, what they look like.
25 But whoever catches a glimpse of the revealed counsel of God—the free life!—even out of the corner of his eye, and sticks with it, is no distracted scatterbrain but a man or woman of action. That person will find delight and affirmation in the action.
26-27 Anyone who sets himself up as “religious” by talking a good game is self-deceived. This kind of religion is hot air and only hot air. Real religion, the kind that passes muster before God the Father, is this: Reach out to the homeless and loveless in their plight, and guard against corruption from the godless world.
Copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson
You have probably never looked in a mirror, saw something amiss and forgot about it. In fact, if we glance in a mirror and see that our hair is a bit crazy, or we have a blemish, or something else is “wrong” we can hardly keep from thinking about it. So, when James writes that looking in God’s word and not doing what it says is as crazy as looking in a mirror and immediately forgetting what we see there, the analogy is meant to get our full attention. In the same way, but on the positive side, when we look in God’s word and keep on doing what we see there, we will be blessed. So, what does it mean to be blessed? We all have our various definitions that will be based on personal preference and current life situations. For the most part what we consider to be blessing would be decreased “pain” in life and increased “pleasure.” I don’t mean just physical pain and pleasure. It could be less pain in relationships, or more pleasure in job contentment. The fact is when we begin to live life in line with the truth of God, we will increase our potential for “blessing” in every aspect of our lives. Mental, physical, and relational resiliency and thriving will improve. However, this will be both relative and temporary. It will be relative in that in comparison to God’s will for others you may have “less” health and pleasure in those areas. You will, if you obey God, maximize your own thriving, but again, if you compare to others you might become discontent. This will also be temporary. If you follow God, you will increase your potential for, say, marital happiness, but at some point, your marriage will end with death. I don’t want to diminish the tangible blessings of living in the truth of God, but those tangible blessings, as real as they are, are not the focus of the gospel. God’s greatest blessing is God himself. We have relationship with God that is ongoing and doesn’t end at death. We simply must make this blessing the focus our hearts and minds.